Sunday, July 09, 2006

The Curse of Freedom

Two articles on Iraq. One from Omar at Iraq the Model. The other from Michael Yon. Omar describes the effect that the War on Terror is having on the Arab consciousness, based on an extensive monitoring of online forums. He thinks that, apart from the horrors which makes the front pages,  it has also been a vast learning experience which has enabled many thoughtful Arabs to distinguish between terrorism and fighting for their country. Michael Yon, for his part, is upbeat about Iraq and less upbeat about Afghanistan for the reason rooted in precisely what Omar mentions: the relative development of consciousness in both regions.


Omar at ITM says:

The reactions I gathered were posted on an Arabic forum on the BBC Arabic website. About three dozens of comments were made by Iraqis both inside Iraq and in exile and all these comments were supportive of Israel or at least against Hamas as far as the topic is concerned except for only three comments; that's a 10:1 ratio while as you probably have guesses, the opposite ratio is true about the comments by the rest of Arabs. These comments and some of the non-Iraqi Arab reactions they stimulated caught my attention. In fact Mohammed and I spent an entire day reading through the 500+ comments in that thread and thought we could share some of the best and most interesting stuff with you. ...

Perhaps our problem is that we in Iraq are evolving politically faster than we are doing when it comes to economy, security, etc. that we are even ahead of countries like Egypt or Kuwait in holding real elections and having a permanent constitution and fair representation of all the segments of the people. Of course this lag between political and material progress will bring on difficulties and challenges but at the same time what cannot be denied is the impressive evolution in awareness considering the short time elapsed since we got our freedom back.

But what really makes me feel optimistic about this new Iraqi way of thinking is that it shows how Iraqis are beginning to distinguish between terrorism and rightful acts of resistance not only in Iraq but also on a global level and are showing decreasing tolerance for extremism and this in my opinion is what builds peace in the region or any given region of this world.

He is not asserting that Iraqis have suddenly become uncritical admirers of America, but that as perhaps one of the only countries in the Middle East which is building its own future, its citizens have had to make reflective choices about the nature of responsibility; when and when not to use violence; and to distinguish between lawful combat and unbridled savagery. They've discovered that the Other is neither wholly devil nor angel; and that they themselves are neither.

Michael Yon, in There Be Dragons on July 6 makes a counterintuitive observation: Iraq is a more hopeful place than Afghanistan. And to understand this, you have to look to the people and not to the land.

From the ground in Iraq, my perception over time was that the Coalition and Iraqis were committed to their mission and making tremendous progress, despite ongoing violence. I believe Iraq will become a success. We went there with too few troops and an imprecise plan to maintain the peace, errors that a smart and determined enemy exploited fully. Despite delays and setbacks, there is a new government in place, democratically elected by Iraqis whose staggering turn-out numbers testify to their commitment to the process. The Iraqi Security Forces are increasingly competent, a learning curve I witnessed first hand. A first dispatch about the ISF was titled “Please Don’t Shoot Us,” but ten months later, I was writing about raids the US Army conducted using intelligence developed by the ISF. The fact that a US Army general recently invited me back to Iraq to see the situation is indicative of Army confidence that the progress is ongoing and substantial. By now the military knows what readers sometimes chide me about: if invited to a mess, I will report the mess.

My foray into Afghanistan was less positive. In fact, when I contacted the Army Public Affairs in Afghanistan, there was no response. Iraq is not a quagmire and might be a good ally some day, but Afghanistan is a stone-aged disaster. The Iraqis tend to value education, while Afghans value inertia, and while the progress in Iraq is rapid, obvious and palpable, Afghanistan is mostly a lawless giant hunting lodge where our Special Operations people stalk terrorists, but it’s like a managed preserve insuring that the hunters never run out of game — in this case, game that hunts back.

Like all judgments, both Omar's and Michael Yon's will be subject to modification depending on events. But their key argument is interesting. That campaigns must be judged by whether they alter conciousness. If nations can never be built for indigenes by others, then to the extent that Iraqis are able to self-organize, albeit often for destructive ends, they are constructing a future for themselves, which (or so Omar hopes) will eventually be rational and intelligent. The matter is altogether different when a country is left is a time warp of ritual hatred, with prescriptive resentments providing an easy escape from action. Rich Lowery, writing from Israel, bemoans the absence of this special consciousness in describing the state of Gaza in its current crisis with Israel. If Iraq is on a blood-bespattered but upward learning curve, and Afghanistan is a stone-age battleground in which cycles and eons are the measure of time, Gaza is the playground of fantasy. Here time has stopped in the way that is only possible within an asylum.

The cleanest solution is for the Palestinians to reform themselves. In this sense, Palestinian politics still very much matters to Israelis. “The question now is whether the Palestinians have the inclination and the capacity to build a state,” says Israeli elder statesman Shimon Peres.

Roughly speaking, Palestinian politics is dominated by terrorists — as represented by Hamas — and corrupt terrorist-enabling incompetents — as represented by Fatah, the late Yasser Arafat’s organization. Pity the Palestinians if Fatah is their best hope for rational government. Former Arafat negotiator and elected Fatah representative Saeb Erekat admits that Fatah needs to reform. “We’re not doing it,” he says, “and have no excuse for not doing it — I don’t feel like lying today.”

Something of a model for a way forward is southern Lebanon, where Hezbollah dominates and has a significant rocket capability that it handles with restraint. Like Hamas, Hezbollah is a terrorist organization with a role in government, but Israel has managed to establish a somewhat stable deterrent relationship with it. Hezbollah knows that if it goes too far, Israel will hit back hard.

Perhaps it will be possible to establish a similar deterrent relationship with Hamas. One senior Israeli security source says, for now, that means forcing Hamas “to choose between their regime and their terror.” It might be that Hamas can never be made to moderate its behavior. And still looming is yet another crisis — the approach of a nuclear-armed Iran, whose deterability Israel obviously can’t determine with trial and error.

It says something about Hamas when its enemies hope it can rise to the standard of the Hezbollah. Like asking Jeffrey Dahmer why he couldn't be more like Ted Bundy. But it says even more about the need to empower people in the thrall of murderous delusions. An empowerment which, for whatever reason, never occurred in Gaza; sixty years of UN refugee camps notwithstanding. Not humanity and democracy all packaged up. That might be demanding too much. But some way the ideas themselves can be left on the ground for people to pick up and embrace as their own.

88 Comments:

Blogger bandit.three.six said...

It's good to hear someone else say that we're winning in Iraq. I sincerely hope that it catches on.

7/09/2006 07:39:00 AM  
Blogger whit said...

The Guggenheim Foundation announced that it will build its largest museum to date in Abu Dhabi. The museum will cost $200 million dollars. A google of United Arab Emirates, Dubai, Bahrain, Qatar, and Kuwait will reveal Persian Gulf countries awash in petro-dollars which are "burning holes in their pockets." The dichotomy of the Arab world and Islam is an enigma. One brother is advancing a backward fundamentalism funded by the other whose oil dollars are also buying western amenities and materialism. How long will this symbiotic relationship continue and how much misery and devastation will it inflict on the greater Islamic world before that world realizes the madness of the hypocrisy?

7/09/2006 07:44:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

.."But it says even more about the need to empower people in the thrall of murderous delusions"..

Oustide interference and well intentioned external support has encouraged a cottage industry based on terror extortion and victimhood. Had Israel and the Palestinians been been ignored they would have had to deal with one another and this would be settled business. The good and some sinister intentions of numerous outside parties has brought us this horse designed by committee.

The same fix from outside mentality is at play in Iraq and Afghansitan and according to this read optimistic in Iraq. We all hope that is true. I cannot resist in expanding on the metaphor of Afghanistan being a game park. A stoned age game park might be more apt.

7/09/2006 07:52:00 AM  
Blogger Meme chose said...

Say what you like about GWB and his 'Neocon' advisors, but if you look closely at their statements at the time you will see that one reason they favored taking on Iraq was that they judged it to be by far the most favorable location in the Arab world where this valuable and necessary type of learning might be induced.

To that extent, they must be said to have successfully foreseen the emergence of this comparison.

7/09/2006 08:51:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

It is possible, but by no means certain, that Afghanistan's repulsion of British colonialism (on three occasions: 1843, 1880, and 1921) took away from Afghanis the prerequisite mentality for accession to modernity. Because of their prowess in defense, Afghanis have not had the day-to-day experience of colonial government that they could then process over several generations.

Human beings are learners, speakers, and imitators. Learning for the human is a non-abelian process. In simple terms, this means we have to learn algebra before we can understand calculus: the order in which we learn can be determinative on whether we learn.

If (as seems to be the case from these reports) Afghanis suffer from a missing link in their memetic history, it's reasonable to conclude this missing link is experience, over time, with enlightened colonialism. We're teaching them calculus, but their still on arithmetic.

In a few generations, perhaps.

7/09/2006 08:59:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Golda Meir said, "Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us."

But what we are seeing, increasingly, with the Palestinians is they *all* long for martyrdom. None of them - men, women, or children - want to live, they all aspire to death as the pinnacle of existance.

The men terrorists keep shooting off rockets and blowing things up, seemingly oblivious to the fact that they will become blowed up in return.

The women, we are told, are now adding a suicide belt to their negligee when they retire to sleep.

And the children are being fed a diet of "death to the infidel/Jew" concurrent with lots and lots of funerals showing dead people as hero's. So that the child, too, wants to grow up, as far as it is able, to become dead and a martyr'd hero.

Of *course* given this short-term goal of death, the Palestinians will never, ever, be able to put together a government because they will never, ever, be able to plan more than two weeks in advance.

So that the Palestinians have morph'd from Golda's concept of "loving their children" which at least hints that they will have children and want to provide a future for them, to a new concept, of "Peace will come when the Arabs will love their own lives more than they hate us."

7/09/2006 09:47:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

> But what we are seeing, increasingly, with the Palestinians is they *all* long for martyrdom

They are fighting for their country. Imagine that China occupied three quarters of the US, and was moving towards taking the rest. Say that small arms were all the weapons we had left, while China had tanks and the most modern weapons in the world. There wouldn't be much left we could do but die as martyrs.

7/09/2006 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger pst314 said...

"They are fighting for their country."

No, they are fighting for the restoration of the old systems where infidels knew their place and massa muslim would lynch any who got too uppity.

7/09/2006 11:04:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The Iraqis tend to value education, while Afghans value inertia, and while the progress in Iraq is rapid, obvious and palpable,
Afghanistan is mostly a lawless giant hunting lodge where our Special Operations people stalk terrorists, but it’s like a managed preserve insuring that the hunters never run out of game — in this case, game that hunts back.
"
---
Amen:
The more I learn about Afghanistan, tha more I have to admit Tony was right all along!

7/09/2006 11:31:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Afghanistan ca 2006:
Ghulam Haider, 11, is to be married to Faiz Mohammed, 40.
She had hoped to be a teacher but was forced to quit her classes when she became engaged.


The Bride Price
---
The Biographies of two Rocket Scientists:
---
"A man named Mohammed Fazal, 45, told Sinclair that village elders had urged him to take his second wife, 13-year-old Majabin, in lieu of money owed him by the girl's father.

The two men had been gambling at cards while also ingesting opium and hashish."

7/09/2006 11:37:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

It's like the difference between the immigrants we once encouraged to come here, and the ones that GWB encourages to come in by the MILLIONS.

7/09/2006 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

It is actually less simple. At the end of the eighteenth century Palestine was ruled for two centuries by the Ottoman Empire. By this time the Ottoman reign was weakening. Napolean wanted to secure the area when he invaded Egypt and England wanted to preserve it's trade routes to England. Both Naoplean and England wanted Jews from Europe to settle Palestine to bring capital and stability to the region where the Ottoman's were losing control.

The Ottoman Sultan and the Royal Navy drove the French from Egypt in 1801. British Protestants and English Jews remained enthralled with the idea of having the Jews of the Diaspora to return to the Holy Land.

The Macedonian General Mohammed Ali, who was sent to Egypt by the sultan to oust the French decided he enjoyed the power and set himself up as ruler of Egypt, Palestine and Syria. Ali defeated the forces of the Sultan right to the Turkish border. The European powers wished to terminate Ali's rule and did so by destroying his fleet and driving the Egyptian forces out of Syria and Palestine in 1839.

Israel became a country because of big power politics, English Protestant belief in the restoration of the Jews in the Holy Land and the European Jews wishing to return to a home land. It has been occupied for over four hundred years and settled and resettled.

It is hard to argue the value of one claim over another. It is also irrelevant. The Palestinians can become one of the wealthiest Arab states without being dependent on oil or they can continue their insane quest for martyrdom and ultimately lose. Israel has the capital, military might and the motivation to win ovwer any combination of Arab states. IMO it is time for the US to step back and let them sort it out amongst themselves.

7/09/2006 11:44:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

ot:
I would LOVE to see this:
"A source close to the ex-Congressman tells TIME that DeLay is planning an aggressive campaign to retake the House seat he quit in June if an appeals court lets stand a ruling by a federal judge last week that his name must stay on November's ballot—even though he has moved to Virginia.

"If it isn't overturned, Katy bar the door!" says a G.O.P. official. "Guess he'll have to fire up the engines on the campaign and let 'er rip."

---
For once the voters could get even with the courts!

7/09/2006 11:52:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

mem chose - Say what you like about GWB and his 'Neocon' advisors, but....one reason they favored taking on Iraq was that they judged it to be by far the most favorable location in the Arab world where this valuable and necessary type of learning might be induced.

To that extent, they must be said to have successfully foreseen the emergence of this comparison.


If true, it is the only thing they have sucessfully foreseen in their bungled postwar occupation.

And if true, was this "teaching the Iraqis self-awareness" moment worth the 25,000 casualties, blown relations worldwide, and the blowing of 700 billion from China and Japan that will have to be painfully paid off once Bush leaves office and loan payments start coming due?

=================================

Wu Wei - Imagine that China occupied three quarters of the US, and was moving towards taking the rest. Say that small arms were all the weapons we had left, while China had tanks and the most modern weapons in the world. There wouldn't be much left we could do but die as martyrs.

Pretty true, Wu. For 50 years the Zionists and their Jewish-American backers methodically lied about many aspects of their 5 Wars (primarily that they were always sneak attacked by Arabs who started each war) and deliberately went about creating myths to cover other inconvenient truths.

One myth many in the American public believe, especially the rube Christian Zionists down South, is that there is no such thing as an "indigenous Palestinian". The disingenous "sage" of pithy Israeli sayings, Golda Meir, spent many a tour of the US explaining how Palestine was an uninhabited land when the Jews arrived. The Jews, the 1st hard workers in 2,000 years, turned desert into a land of milk and honey...then "Arabs from elsewhere, the so-called Palestinians" arrived and sought to mootch and exploit the labor of the naive Jews.

All bunk as the 19th Century census numbers, Ottoman and British assessments on farmed lands the natives had going, and DNA testing revealed.

Which showed the Palestinians had lived there long enough to be - along with Lebanese and Syrians, readily distinguishable by genetic analysis from Muslims elsewhere, shared common genetic traits with Sephardic Jews too...but were as a group of common ancestry - quite different from Moroccans, Iraqis, Egyptians, Saudis, or Askenazi Jews. That the lands they farmed were not neglected but rich, and suffered only when Israelis tapped into acquifers on Palestinian land to "make the desert bloom" and now only works by prohibiting Palestinians from water other than strict rationing - so the acquifer water goes to historically desert land 20 miles away the zionists took or bought on the cheap. Or that present Palestinian population is expected given population numbers, modern medicine, and excessive Muslim birth rates.

The Palestinians have many faults. If not for their extremist - "no peace ever" stance, they could have had about 22% of their original land and avoided 20 of the last 40 years of Occupation if they had accepted peace before the Ultra-Zionist Begin came in determined to take all their land - then after Madrid. Or if they hadn't mirrored the Zionist "right of all Jews globally to return" with their own Palestinian "right of return" and unrealistically insisted on expulsion of Jews
from any pre-1948 land leased or owned by a Palestinian.

The distinction is while both sides had unrealistic goals - the Palestinians took the path of emotional, irrational counterproductive extremism - while the Zionists focused on organized nation building and a clever host of lies which though they failed globally - for an important period of time have really snookered their main military backer and cash cow.

Now that Americans are becoming better educated on ME matters and hearing the arguments from a broader assortment of people than once dominated the US media discussions, we are getting a more balanced perspective. Perhaps understanding that there are plenty of victims with plenty of just reasons not to be happy about their present circumstances in the ME.

7/09/2006 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger Starling David Hunter said...

Whit said: "A google of United Arab Emirates, Dubai, Bahrain, Qatar, and Kuwait will reveal Persian Gulf countries awash in petro-dollars which are "burning holes in their pockets." The dichotomy of the Arab world and Islam is an enigma. One brother is advancing a backward fundamentalism funded by the other whose oil dollars are also buying western amenities and materialism."

I have no doubt that there are people in the Gulf States that are sympathetic to Islamists. I have no doubt that there are some that send money their way. Whether its support or extortion, I don't know.

In my limited experience (1 year) of living, teaching, and travelling in the Gulf, I have concluded that the rulers and the vast majority residents/citizens of the Gulf states enjoy an excellent quality of life, one that they enjoy far too much to want the Islamists to succeed.

Take the Qataris for example. In December they are hosting the Asian Games in Doha. They also have a the major Education City initiative underway where 5 US universities - Carnegie Mellon, Virgina Commonwealth, Georgetown, Texas A&M, and Cornell are setting up shop. The plan is for this to become the premier educational hub in the entire Arab world. Note what universities from which countries were not invited in- no Saudis, no Sudanese, no Egyptians, no Iranians, no Syrians, but Americans.

Dubai has a similar effort underway that should be up to speed in 4-5 years.

I can't stress enough that the people with whom I interact and regularly converse- even those that are religiously conservative- don't exhibit any overt sympathy for the Islamists. It doesn't mean they love the US or Israel, but they don't want to give up what they've got- and they've got a lot- to live in the world Bin Laden or Mullah Omar or Zarqawi envisioned. The Gulf states, imho, are not funding their own suicide.

Just one American's view.

7/09/2006 12:50:00 PM  
Blogger Graytooth said...

whit-How long will this symbiotic relationship continue and how much misery and devastation will it inflict on the greater Islamic world before that world realizes the madness of the hypocrisy?

--good observation. it is important to remember that the symbiotic relationship isn't exactly that simple and includes a lot
more players. America being one, in the tangled web weaved. England/America actively sought deals with the House of Saud, the House of Saud came to power as the result of deals with the Wahhabi's. These gentlemen's agreements are all very fine and well, until the bombs start going off, and the planes start making mysterious turns.
and lets not even mention the gaggle of other groups/countries that have (and still have) had their fingers in the muslim oil pie. In many ways, EVERYONE's guilty. You certainly cannot pin the whole thing on America. But neither can grant Uncle Sam total absolution.
I don't doubt that most of the world sees the maddening hypocricy and says "oh well, that's just the way that is".
much of the foundation of the world is built upon maddening hypocricy.
Getting the world to see it isn't crucial.
Getting 'the world' to do anything about it isn't even crucial. Getting certain key players moved around on the chess board, or knocked off the chess board, is what it's all about. And will always be.

Afghanistan was never really a priority.
Rumsfeld moved spec. ops out of there
almost as soon as he finally moved em in (thanks to much George Tenet begging and bowing).

Pat Buchanan recently said, when asked where he thought the next Afghanistan was gonna be, He said, "Afghanistan".

Afghanistan was the CIA's deal, all along. And I most certainly think we got Bin Laden in Tora Bora. Hell, the CIA came in and threw bundles of cash at the northern alliance a month after 9/11. You don't do that if you are really seriously thinking of, later, building a stable nation. It's those same
northern outlaws that are growing the opiates and causing the headaches. duh!

7/09/2006 01:25:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Starling:
The folks we KNOW that's not true for are the Wahhabists in Saudi Arabia:
And the politicians there act like the politicians in Dubai or DC to keep their pork on the table.
(just had to get in the P word)
---
Steve Emerson made a video of the hate-spewing Mosques more than a decade ago, yet some DC pol was fighting for one within a few miles of the Capital a year or two ago.
---
---
...then there's the Mullahs.

7/09/2006 01:29:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"northern outlaws that are growing the opiates and causing the headaches. duh! "
---
I've heard the pure stuff doesn't cause headaches.

7/09/2006 01:33:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

My Hardin is strong, but my History is weak:
What's an "Askenazi Jew?"

7/09/2006 01:43:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hardin was NOT mispelled, Limbaugh's problems notwithstanding.

7/09/2006 01:44:00 PM  
Blogger Tom Paine said...

George Bush successfully freed 50 million people from two of the foulest governments on the planet.

He did this at a cost in lives (ours, theirs, collateral), and money that makes this war the *cheapest* war America has ever fought.

Then – instead of replacing those two governments with possibly benign, but certainly pro-American, dictatorships (the easy route) – he put huge amounts of time, effort, arm-twisting, and money into coaxing their peoples into setting up genuine consensual democracies.

If his critics say he's made a lot of mistakes along the way, I agree with them. If they claim that they, or any of their own “leaders”, would not have made even more mistakes – and/or worse ones – I laugh at them.

George Bush has vision. Most of his critics are shortsighted (at best) -- and some of them are simply insane
.

7/09/2006 01:44:00 PM  
Blogger Graytooth said...

To that extent, they must be said to have successfully foreseen the emergence of this comparison.

i kind of doubt that they had any foresight beyond "get shorty!".
The bush cabal (i say, affectionately)
was thirsting for Saddam's hide long before 9/11. And for good reason. Saddam was a bad player and it was time for him to go. Not because of WMD or Al Queda or anything like that. He was just simply a pain in everyone's ass. 9/11 provided the impetus for Iraq.

I think that the admin. stumbled ungloriously upon the right choice.
Accidently, they did the right thing.
I don't think there was any grand-headed strategery involved at all.
Hell, after Baghdad fell guys were flying Mission Accomplished flags.
The ends sort of justifies the means.
In retrospect, Iraq was a brilliant move...1) it wasn't muslim and 2) it's the heart of the middle east (he who controls baghdad controls etc....)

it would have been stupid to go into Saudi Arabia, Iran, or Syria. You would've risked a clash of civilizations.
Nobody liked Saddam and Iraq is central to the whole region. Not that Rumsfeld-Cheney had this fore most on the bean, their bloodlust for Saddam
was no surprise.

I wouldn't worry too much about the Iraqi gap--that of them evolving so much politically, but not evolving so much economically-- I somehow kind of think that having America as a trading partner will be good for them.
It's not like we are going to abandon them--and then start demanding payments.

7/09/2006 01:44:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Here are some folks who say Iraq has been badly bungled and the war is nearly lost and when it is lost bad things will happen in lots of other places.

Usually I'm a cheerleader for the war. In this case I'd have to agree with the asessment.

7/09/2006 02:00:00 PM  
Blogger Graytooth said...

But what we are seeing, increasingly, with the Palestinians is they *all* long for martyrdom. None of them - men, women, or children - want to live, they all aspire to death as the pinnacle of existance.

i don't think this is the case.

i will NEVER forget a video I once saw.
It was at a church lunch about islam.
They interviewed some average-ordinary Palestinian people.
A palestinian lady turned to the camera and said something to the effect of, "What we are hoping and praying for, what we beg for the most, the deepest desire of our souls is to have America come here (to fix things)".

I believe that many many people living in the crap holes of the world, past and present, yearn for some benevolent someone, something, some nation
to come rescue them from the living nightmare of warlords, criminals, and murderous thugs that rule the roost and make life for the average person hell.

Not everyone is a mind-numbed muslim crazy. Most are not.

Believe me, there were plenty of people who secretly wanted us to come into Iraq and put a slug into the Hussein's heads. Which we did, with 2 out of 3 of them. Dad will never see the light of day again.

The problem is that thuggery and oppression are fairly powerful
crowd control methods. Not everyone of stalins russia or hitlers germany were card carrying zombies. most were not, especially most in the army. but they go along with party line out of fear.
and fear is a very good motivator.
it works. seeing your friends and family members dissappear and or beheaded
reinforces the issue.

when you have no recourse against the murderous oppression, in order to survive, you go along with it.
you may even fervently join it...to try and ensure yourself/family a brighter day. all the while, not really believing it...but pushing that moral conscience out of the way, trading it off for survival.

this is ultimately what the war on terror is supposed to be about.

we'll see.

7/09/2006 02:06:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

And as per usual the ever present opiate problem:

Heroin

Which may in fact turn out to be a phantom menace;

Is Addiction Real?

The NIDA says drugs do not cause addiction. I can't wait until the masses catch up with the science.

As the FireSign Theater used to say: Everything you know is wrong.

7/09/2006 02:15:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

graytooth,

We will know the Palis have come to their senses when they ask to be occupied by America.

7/09/2006 02:19:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

People are getting it about "the Religion of Peace". The conclusion of a current London Times Opinion:

..." If the drifting apart of the Muslim and non-Muslim communities in Britain has increased the danger of terror, it follows that reconciliation and integration would make us safer. I do not mean what I write here to exacerbate the divisions in any way. Rather I believe that we can move closer if we are more honest about what is happening. Mayhem is being unleashed globally in the name of Islam. There is no point denying it, especially since most of those butchered have been Muslim. The British state is not the problem but part of the solution. A tolerant society can survive only if it bands together to suppress intolerance because we are all victims of that intolerance.

Every Briton must join in that effort, no ifs, no buts and no excuses. it and that means we are on a way to a solution."

7/09/2006 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

"Askenazi Jew?"

Some times spelled Ashkenazi.

Eastern European Jew

7/09/2006 02:31:00 PM  
Blogger Marlin said...

I love reading Michael Yon, but sometimes I believe his observations are overly harsh to make sure we don't miss his point. There was article in Canada.com a couple of days ago that presents a slightly different point of view about Afghanistan that I believe is worth considering.

---------------------

Canada's three-year commitment in southern Afghanistan will likely be a lot longer unless Afghan soldiers and policemen can be trained in sufficient numbers to replace them.

Few understand this challenge better than American Col. Paul Calbos a former paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne.

For the past 12 months, the U.S. army ranger has been with the Combined Security Transition Command as the chief of its Police Advisory Team. In this capacity Calbos has roamed the southern deserts in a lightly armoured vehicle, mentoring, equipping and training the Afghan National Police (ANP) to fight the Taliban.

"We the Americans and the Canadians are impatient. We expect good results in a year. This is a typical western expectation," Calbos said. "But this is a world that operates on a totally different wavelength.

"This country does not have a strong state identity. People identify with their clans and sub-clans, there are Sunnis and Shias and communists and anti-communists and those who fought with and against the Russians and the Taliban. This is all against a backdrop where it is considered normal to settle differences with war. It is terribly complex."

[...]

The Afghan's adviser laughed at published reports in Canadian and international media that the Taliban has been winning the war in recent months,

"Look, this is a very dangerous place," he said. "There has been a Taliban resurgence. They've rested and re-fitted and come back for more.

"But as for the war, it is not even a contest. Look at the casualty figures and the Taliban's inability to launch campaigns in the large population centres. They just don't do it."

A far greater concern to the soldier-teacher-diplomat was whether and for how long countries such as the U.S. and Canada will be interested in Afghanistan.

"The further away from 9/11 we get, the more people tend to forget," Calbos said. "There will be donor fatigue and a real fight to keep the international community interested. We are in a race to re-build the security forces. If they do not re-build we will be here longer and that is in nobody's interest. But I really do believe that we are getting there. We are making progress."

Canada.com: U.S. soldier warns Canada likely faces a long stay in Afghanistan

7/09/2006 02:36:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

C4,

Worth the 25,000 Iraqi casualties?

Compared to what? The number Saddam would have killed over the same period? Yep.

Compared to Morton Grove, Illinois. Nope.

Why is the standard always perfection and never better vs. worse? BDS.

7/09/2006 02:42:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

It's amazing how strong the reaction is when Sunnis get killed, like the slaughter today, yet when dozens of Shiites are killed in car bombings several times a week, the reaction is "Ho hum, another car bombing".

The car bombings are a constant, mostly one-sided civil war which has been going on for years. Foreign Al Qaeda wouldn't last two minutes without local Sunni support, so the Sunnis are responsible.

Maliki is making a huge mistake if his first priority is his huge, everything-included reconciliation plan. It is a disaster if he is putting all his eggs in that one basket.

His top priority should be to get a cease fire, to slow the move to a full scale civil war. That has to come one tiny step at a time. One of the first steps should be to ask everyone to agree to stop bombing mosques for a week, and to make foreign terrorists stop too. He could move from that to a cease fire on Iraqi civilians for a week, etc.

7/09/2006 02:49:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

I have concluded that Afghanistan no longer matters. We needed to take out Al Qudea's base of operations and that meant taking out their goofy sidekick, the Taliban, too, and we did. Good.

We needed to show the world that we could destroy a government without destroying a people. We did that. Good.

We needed to give the people there a chance to develop their own democracy. We did that. Good.

But if the tribes in the hinderlands are P.O.ed over not getting a bigger piece of the pie and want to take up arms, fine.
Let them. A couple of old B-52's on standby in the Seychelles will keep them suitably entertained. NATO can use the place as a test and training range. The tribes there are never going to be any kind of a threat to us, especially as long as we apply a minimum of military capabilities.

Afghanistan is too far away from just about everything, lacks useful resources, and ite people - Islamic but neither Arabs and nor Persians - are too unrepresentative to excite much interest anywhere else.

Iraq will be our "Restistance is Futile: Westernize or Die" example, and they have both oil and a strategic position to offer. Afghanistan will continue to be Afghanistan.

The Democrats who are saying to abandon Iraq so we can do a really
terrific job in Afghanistan are not just idiots - they are three stage idiots with strap-on boosters.

7/09/2006 02:51:00 PM  
Blogger crosspatch said...

I would say that the problems in Afghanistan are more of a cultural nature and will take a generation or two to actually turn around. You have a country that is rugged, has a harsh climate, and living is hard. There has been little enhasis on education and little tradition of success in matters beyond the tribe.

Iraq, on the other hand, has a history of education and industry. While they have vast areas of desert wilderness, they also have a long tradition of agriculture and huge water resources. Education has been valued and at one time in the past, they were one of the most advanced in the Arab region in terms of medicine, education, and industry.

Turning Afghanistan around is going to require building of infrastructure and education of the upcoming generations. Many in Afghanistan can't read. In fact, Afghan police recruits who can read are considered for more "elite" training and a course in basic literacy for the bulk of the illiterate recruits is offered as an option for those wishing promotion.

Their value for "inertia" is simply based on traditions of how they have survived over the centuries in that harsh land. Tribal traditions are pretty much as they have been since the Mongol hordes invaded. Lacking school, you learned from your father, grandfather, or tribal wise men. This results in "inertia" as old ways are perpetuated through the generations. One has little opportunity to learn ideas leading to such concepts as experimentation and research and individual analytical thinking.

Once a generation is educated and is of age to enter life as adults, they will need other tools to make best use of that education. They will need transportation, communications, access to higher learning. Only after that generation begins to take the reigns of power and the generation behind them becomes established will things truly change.

We need to be very patient in Afghanistan. The changes we hope to produce are going to take decades because they require cultural shifts that must happen through experiance and can not be purchased for any price.

We could speed the process up, I suppose, by educating and training as many Afghans as possible but since places for this education and training are limited in their country, it would probably have to be done outside of Afghanistan.

7/09/2006 02:53:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

No wonder Russia always vetoes sanctions against North Korea (and others).

washtimes.com
Russia secretly offered to sell North Korea technology that could help the rogue state protect nuclear stockpiles and safeguard weapons secrets from international scrutiny, but officials backed off after the arms flirtation was publicized.
Russian officials touted the equipment to the communist regime at an information technology exhibition in Pyongyang late last month -- just days before North Korea sparked international alarm by launching a salvo of short- and long-range missiles into the sea between the Korean Peninsula and Japan.
Aleksei Grigoriev, deputy director of Russia's Federal Information Technologies Agency, told a reporter for the Itar-Tass news agency that North Korea planned to buy equipment for the safe storage and transportation of nuclear materials.

7/09/2006 02:55:00 PM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

Cedarford said... Pretty true, Wu. For 50 years the Zionists and their Jewish-American backers methodically lied about many aspects of their 5 Wars (primarily that they were always sneak attacked by Arabs who started each war) and deliberately went about creating myths to cover other inconvenient truths.

Ah yes, the big bad jews have done it again, and YET, they RETURNED the Sinai TWO TIMES FOR PEACE, and got NOTHING, mr c4, your re-writing of history is amazing...

c4: One myth many in the American public believe, especially the rube Christian Zionists down South, is that there is no such thing as an "indigenous Palestinian".

correct, there ARE ARABS that live there, but the term PALESTINIAN was used to discribe JEWS until the 1966 INVENTION of the PLO by egypt with the egyptian ARAFAT

c4: The disingenous "sage" of pithy Israeli sayings, Golda Meir, spent many a tour of the US explaining how Palestine was an uninhabited land when the Jews arrived.

actually, read mark twain, MOST of what is Israel and the west bank had been deforested and deserted by the Ottomans, the recent wave of ARABS moving into the west bank came for jobs.

in the last 50 yrs the arab population of the west bank and gaza has exploded...

c4: Which showed the Palestinians had lived there long enough to be - along with Lebanese and Syrians, readily distinguishable by genetic analysis from Muslims elsewhere, shared common genetic traits with Sephardic Jews too...but were as a group of common ancestry -

which proves nothing, since most syrians views the area as part of syria, not PALESTINE

C4: That the lands they farmed were not neglected but rich, and suffered only when Israelis tapped into acquifers on Palestinian land to "make the desert bloom"

INTERESTING, But there were no "Palestinian lands" in 1928....

c4: so the acquifer water goes to historically desert land 20 miles away the zionists took or bought on the cheap

actually the lands the jews bought from the ARABS typically was priced at 10 times market, when we could buy land since it was ILLEGAL for a JEW to own land during the ottoman times.


c4: Or that present Palestinian population is expected given population numbers, modern medicine, and excessive Muslim birth rates.


There is very little water in gaza, it cannot support 1.4 million palestinians, i guess this is why lebanon has started to dam the waters upstream to starve out israel? to give to thier palestinian brothers?

or maybe, the palestinians farm like they did 5000 yrs ago and waste so much it aint even funny?

maybe if they spent 1% of the time working to improve farming and water preservation instead of bomb belts they too could have all the water they wished

c4they could have had about 22% of their original land

actually that opens the question why is it thier lands, the 1918 british mandate GAVE back all of the east and west bank to the jews , the League of Nations supported and endorsed this... so what is 22%, not counting jordan again? tsk tsk

c4: if they had accepted peace before the Ultra-Zionist Begin came in determined to take all their land - then after Madrid.

didnt begin give back the sinai? did not israel already give back over 90% of all disputed lands from 1967?

dont let historic facts stand in your way c4, go ahead make some facts up ...

c4: Or if they hadn't mirrored the Zionist "right of all Jews globally to return" with their own Palestinian "right of return" and unrealistically insisted on expulsion of Jews
from any pre-1948 land leased or owned by a Palestinian.

and yet israel has 25% arabs that live and work in israel, and the arab world is practically jewish free, so it's ok that 21 arab nations can throw their jews out that MIGRATED to israel and you still expect israel to some how offer more arabs the right to MOVE into israel?


c4:The distinction is while both sides had unrealistic goals - the Palestinians took the path of emotional, irrational counterproductive extremism - while the Zionists focused on organized nation building and a clever host of lies which though they failed globally - for an important period of time have really snookered their main military backer and cash cow.

yes let just forget that those lying israelis actually BUILT a state and if the arabs with all their oil and the ussr could not wipe them off the face of the planet just proves that once again, your just a hater...
cant stand to see israel actually succeed, cant be honest and say, israel actually withdrew from disputed lands AGAIN and gave them gaza back, along with billions in infrastructure only to see the so called fake peoples palestine go back to muder and mayheim..

c4: Now that Americans are becoming better educated on ME matters and hearing the arguments from a broader assortment of people than once dominated the US media discussions, we are getting a more balanced perspective.

yes, popularity for israel is at an all time high, and disapproval for palestinians is skyrocketing across the globe...

7/09/2006 02:55:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

In many ways the old Communism is back in Russia, the old days. Putin in a retro ex-KGB agent who has moved the economy and government many steps back. Democracy is really hanging by a thread, as Putin uses his super majority to make constitutional changes to take rights away from the legislature and the people. Economically, Russia is an oil producer riding the boom, but otherwise they have done everything wrong. China seems to see a positive side to free enterprise, and encourage it, as long as the dictatorship controls politically, but Putin seems to see the free market as poison. With his attempts to help rig elections and near country, and selling arms to rogues like North Korea, etc, it seems like he wants nothing more than the old days back.

7/09/2006 03:05:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

C4,

In time there will be no one to press the Palestinian claims. Just as there is no one pressing the claim for Carthage.

In the end right and wrong matter little. What matters is: can you hold the ground. Why?

Well, as you know, military power depends on economic power. The Palis depend on handouts from their friends and resources from their enemies. Not a very strong position.

Israel develops chips for Intel. Israel has rule of law which encourages economic development. The Palis have rule of thugs which discourages development.

In time the Palis will go the way of Carthage. A very distant memory. Couldn't happen to a nicer more friendly bunch.

7/09/2006 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

w.w.,
Read this piece in The National Journal "Putin's Russia"'

Paul Starobin makes the case that Mr Putin stays in front of popular sentiment there, but is not at all driving it. Riding the tiger, as it were.
The article describes a Russia that does not conform to my prejudged feelings toward Mr Putin or Russia, but makes for an informed report.

The cultural ascendency of the Cossacks, if accurate, could be the telling tale of 21st Century Russia, and all Europe for that matter.

7/09/2006 03:33:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

News in from Mexico City

There's gonna be a revolution

Enough of southern Mexico is radicalized, that with the defeat of Mr Orbrador, and his calling the elections "rigged", there will be little other option.

Mr Chavez has the weaponry,
come November, after the Havanna Summit and concurrent with US action against Iran, the Axis of Evil + 3 will pay as required to see Mexico afire. Petrochemical infrastructure in Mexico is lightly defended, at best.

Which will mean $6.00+ USD per gallon of gasoline here in the US of A.

Iran will have gasoline shortages, but so will the US, turn about fair play, they'll say.

Who has further to fall?
Who will fall the furthest?

Guerilla War at it's best.

If having everyone living in the 7th century is the objective, how much economic tit for tat will surburban dwellers take?

Before we invade Mexico to establish security for the infrastructure, or ....?

The Great Game at it's best.

7/09/2006 03:57:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Not to knock GWB/Iraq, but sometimes visions alone are not enough:
Just ask Tim Leary's Ghost.

7/09/2006 04:02:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Souix Indians, they had visions, too.
Paint & prayer that could stop bullets were also in the inventory.
It was not vision that failed the Souix, it was their culture.

The Visions could not stop the demographic tide.
Only decisive action can do that.

One nation from sea to shining sea
or from the Jordan river to the sea.

A "Country" of 5 or 6 million people, a Joke, perhaps. But for people to believe Israel, Palistine or any of the like populated places of the World to be "real" countries is funny.
To believe that each ethnicly diverse geographic sliver of aformer Empires should be or are "Countries" is PC to an extreme.

A one bomb State, is not a "Country" at all.
A City-State at best.

7/09/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

'Rat:
Whatever we do, we should NOT build a fence:
The Israelis only cut down bombing by 90%, which means 10 PERCENT STILL MAKE IT!
Surrender, it's the enlightened thing to do.
...and now they're lobbing them Russian Kartrishka Dolls or whatever over the fence:
Here we'll be dealing with mortar-fired M-80's.

7/09/2006 04:24:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"One nation from sea to shining sea or from the Jordan river to the sea."
---
...from Venezuela to the Canadian Border.
(Canucks hire Chicoms to protect their Forests and Oilfields)

7/09/2006 04:27:00 PM  
Blogger Craigicus said...

Cedarford and Wu Wei make simplistic statements about the nobility of the Palestinian cause but their truth bleaches out the dirty stains of many bloody hands on that hideous rudder.

Factor-in the hating of, loathing of, attacks on, and squashing of the once massive jewish populations in all of the Arab major cities, and the new land of Israel takes on unblemishded and perfect skin.

One need only look at a map to see how the Jews tried to hold on to some land and the city that is the city of Jews, Jerusalem. You can see the parts they've given back so easily -- all to try to keep something of a Jewish homeland -- while doing the least disruption of everyone else.

What does the Arab world do? It says "Oh my goodness, we can't let the Jews have JewTown, that is really ArabTown."

The Arab Pogroms against the Jews far surpasses any of the displacement that the Jews did when they came in to make their new modern home of Israel. And there was never an Arab compromise compassionate as the ones already made by the very young state of Israel.

As I began to learn of this history on my own, I started out a dispassionate and indifferent outsider. Now, out of only a sense of right and wrong, I'm closer to the Israeli survival cause than an American Pentacostal on the eve of Armageddon.

Funny how the Palestinians were forced out of Syria, Jordan, and Egypt, but keep their anger only at Israel. This is the result of a wicked application of genius statecraft that offers cartoon Jew Monsters to the populace every time a painful issue surfaces. "Here, here are your boogeymen!".

To Wu Wei and Cedarford, the Palestinians were just a bambi on a meadow, until the Jewzilla dropped a foot on their poor defenseless bodies.

Instead, the Palestinians are a mixed group of Arab diaspora, persecuted mostly by other Arabs who didn't want to have to think about dealing with the poor masses.

And their own Arab brothers would have them kill the one group of people that they could cooperate with to reach the fastest emergence from poverty to fantastic modern wealth for everyman.

For the Arab schemers who would send their own bretheren into the the pit of dispair just to make trouble for Jews, this works out well.

What would an Arab despot look like if he was standing next to a Jewish Prime Minister? Hmmmmmm... Leader of unwilling poverty sticken people turning on one another vs. Leader selected by happy people doing pretty well. The only thing that keeps this from being a calamity for the Arab Despot is the campaign to make the Jew the evil child of a pig and a dog.

7/09/2006 04:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Oh my goodness, we can't let the Jews have JewTown, that is really ArabTown."
---
I wish Condi could talk like that, but she's got much too much learnin for such.
Halfbright's Dad said so.

7/09/2006 04:34:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Never caught Jon-Bonet's killer, may as well make child molestation and murder legal.

That is the equvilent arguement to cutting the infiltration rate by 90%. Some will still get through.

There is a "very" interesting piece in NYTimes Mag. that presents both sides of the economic arguements concerning immigration. It seemed balance to me, presenting both doug's and buddy's positions.

"... To Borjas, a Cuban immigrant and the pre-eminent scholar in his field, the truth is pretty obvious: immigrants hurt the economic prospects of the Americans they compete with. And now that the biggest contingent of immigrants are poorly educated Mexicans, they hurt poorer Americans, especially African-Americans, the most. ...

...most influential of Borjas's critics is David Card, a Canadian who teaches at Berkeley. He has said repeatedly that, from an economic standpoint, immigration is no big deal and that a lot of the opposition to it is most likely social or cultural. ... ...Economists in Card's camp tend to frame the issue as a puzzle — a great economic mystery because of its very success. The puzzle is this: how is the U.S. able to absorb its immigrants so easily?

After all, 21 million immigrants, about 15 percent of the labor force, hold jobs in the U.S., but the country has nothing close to that many unemployed. (The actual number is only seven million.) So the majority of immigrants can't literally have "taken" jobs; they must be doing jobs that wouldn't have existed had the immigrants not been here. ..."


My personal observations put me in Mr Borgas's camp, but there is truth to the vibrancy issue. For myself if the US decides we need more immigrants, by all means bring some in. How many and at what the intellectual levels of the immigrants should be, can be debated.
Selling work wisas to the highest bidder seems like a viable market solution to me.

The Immigration Equation
by ROGER LOWENSTEIN

7/09/2006 04:39:00 PM  
Blogger Soldier's Dad said...

IMHO The difference between Iraq and Afghanistan is the level of education of woman. Testerone laden men, with nothing to moderate their behaviour but ignorant, uneducated woman, tend towards violence.

The Taliban drove a significant portion of the educated Woman from Afghanistan.

7/09/2006 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

rwe

"The Democrats who are saying to abandon Iraq so we can do a really
terrific job in Afghanistan are not just idiots - they are three stage idiots with strap-on boosters.'

2:51 PM

You better copyright that one.

7/09/2006 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

In addition soldier's dad, the Afghan's cash crop is a decentralized one. Each plot of land an independent producer. Each Afghani treasures their independence from "outside" control

In Iraq the cash crop is centralized and controlled. With each faction interested in it's "share" of the proceeds.

The Iraqi submitting for centuries, under foreign domination and rule, the Afghans never submitting to anyone.

Two very diverse and dissimilar cultures.
The Afghans are men of the old school, much like the Cossacks.

7/09/2006 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

As far as "peaceful religions" go, Christianity had some bloody days too. Here was the Christian equivalent of the Taliban, setting up God's kingdom on Earth:

Link

After the Peasants' War, a second and more determined attempt to establish a theocracy was made at Münster, in Westphalia (1532–1535)... Matthys identified Münster as the "New Jerusalem", and on January 5, 1534, a number of his disciples entered the city and introduced adult baptism. Rothmann apparently accepted "rebaptism" that day, and well over 1000 adults were soon baptized. Vigorous preparations were made, not only to hold what had been gained, but to proceed from Münster toward the conquest of the world. The town was being besieged by Franz von Waldeck, its expelled bishop. In April 1534 on Easter Sunday, Matthys, who had prophesied God's judgment to come on the wicked on that day, made a sally with only thirty followers, believing that he was a second Gideon, and was cut off with his entire band. He was killed, his head severed and placed on a pole for all in the city to see, and his genitals nailed to the city gate. Bockelson, better known in history as John of Leiden, was subsequently installed as king.

Claiming to be the successor of David, he claimed royal honours and absolute power in the new "Zion". He justified his actions by the authority of visions from heaven, as others have done in similar circumstances. He legalized polygamy, and himself took sixteen wives, one of whom he beheaded himself in the marketplace. Community of goods was also established. After obstinate resistance the town was taken by the besiegers on June 24, 1535, and in January 1536 Bockelson and some of his more prominent followers, after being tortured, were executed in the marketplace. Their dead bodies were exhibited in cages, which hung from the steeple of St. Lambert's Church; the cages still hang there, though the bones were removed later.

7/09/2006 05:13:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rat:
The TRUE COST of unregulated immigration is never figured in, and it never can ALL be figured:
Not too hard to see vast areas that were once nice places to live in CA with good schools, hospitals, etc. that are now similar to what Tiajuana was in the 60's.
...except with much more crime and a much higher growth rate.
Welfare breeds lots of those.
In AZ you haven't seen Nuthin yet:
Just ask VDH.

7/09/2006 05:16:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

In case you hadn't noticed wu wei, that was 470 years ago. Time does fly doesn't it?

7/09/2006 05:16:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Easy to talk theories and go home to your clean, neat, protected neighborhood.
I've had it with "Studies."
(except those I agree with)

7/09/2006 05:17:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

You are right, w.w., "Christianity" was surely something, possibly terrible, 500 years ago.

That and a nickle, you'll have a nickle.

No one today is physically threaten by the actions taken by "Christianity" 500 years ago.

Much of the New World Order's system is threaten by the Mohammedans, which is why there is a pretense of War, today.
Much like WWII in Europe, circa '39.

7/09/2006 05:19:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

News Flash

470 years ago on this date in 1536, Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII of England, is beheaded for adultery. Anne Boleyn was not only part of one of the most disorder families in history but she was a primary instigator of what she called "Church Reform". Her so called reform would cause the Church of England to form and break ties with the Roman Catholic Church and the See of Peter. Anne Boleyn, not only heavely influcened her husband but also was an inspiration to protestant heros Martin Luther and John Fox. While she was a inspiration to protestant she was at odds with her husbands chief advisor, Catholic Saint Sir Thomas More. Anne's daughter Elizabeth I would continue the power, contral and protestant / secular legacy of her mother during her 45 year reign as England's "virgin Queen" (1558-1603).

7/09/2006 05:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

There's also plenty of people that coudn't give a damn about our heritage, whereas regulated immigration would correct for that.
Studies don't take where people plan to go with themselves and their kids lives in the future.
Not too hard to tell, though, sometimes.

7/09/2006 05:20:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"No one today is physically threaten by the actions taken by "Christianity" 500 years ago."
---
Wu feels mentally threatened though, and thinks there's a Timothy McVeigh in waiting in every Tenth Church.

7/09/2006 05:24:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

My point is that a few bad Taliban apples don't spoil the whole Islamic tree. Divide and conquer.

Anabaptists who surrendered were promised leniency, but the Bishop was not in a charitable mood. The killing continued for two days. The bodies were stacked inside the cathedral. Jan van Leyden himself was captured, and tortured to death with hot irons. The cages in which the bodies of van Leyden and two other leaders were displayed still hang from the tower of the church.

7/09/2006 05:31:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

There could be a connection now that I reflect, Anne was beheaded after all. hmmmmm

7/09/2006 05:34:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

A sign of the times, bandit.three.six's photo is seen almost in silhouette.

The size and curve of the weapons clip immediately would have identified him as an enemy combatant, back in the day.

Today we have to id the enemy's uniform or lack there of, or decide that how that weapon is carried as well as where it is pointed threatening or not.

7/09/2006 05:38:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"id the enemy's uniform or lack there of."
---
Geneva for EVERYBODY.
Judicial Power Uber Alles!

7/09/2006 05:42:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Remember the guy on top of the building with the Cell Phone when we were going in?
I figured it was fair game:
If he wasn't an enemy combatant, he was a sure selection for the Darwin Award!

7/09/2006 05:45:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The battle against the Taliban, sponsor State of aQ, where Mr Hamadan was captured is, was not part of an International War.

It is a local conflict, unreleated to other aspects of Mohammedan violence, revolution, inssurection or aggression elsewhere in the World. Unrelated even to the Mohammedan attacks in NYC or DC.

That is what the Supremes "REALLY" decided.

7/09/2006 05:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

But not Clarence Thomas.

7/09/2006 05:52:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

jcjkjDr, you would have taken down bandit.three.six?

7/09/2006 06:01:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Tom Paine - George Bush successfully freed 50 million people from two of the foulest governments on the planet.

He did this at a cost in lives (ours, theirs, collateral), and money that makes this war the *cheapest* war America has ever fought.


Love to get what you're smokin'. In real inflation-adjusted dollar terms, this war is more expensive than WWI, Korea, or Vietnam to the US taxpayers who will be feeling the pain of Bush's foreign debts to finance it and the massive growth in "anti-evildoer" Federal flunkies and bureaucrats nearly as soon as he leaves office and his corporate cronies get their last fat check.

50 million freed? How so? I must have missed the bonfires of discarded buquas in Afghanistan and the joyous celebration of Liberation day where Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds gather and wave their freedom-loving purple fingers and invite Americans living in the neighborhoods to a thank-you dinner.

Not "freed" so much as given an opportunity...at massive cost to future generations of Americans in eliminating the sorry leaders of those sorry nations ...to change their culture and way of live.

No word on the prospects of America doing 6-8 other wars to "free" other foul nations from "foul leadership" - without even getting into the dozen or so basket cases of black Africa and our once-a-decade nation building to Haiti - once the morons there mess it all up again and refoul the place after the latest American "freeing the people and rebuilding the country" exercise.

7/09/2006 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Yes, in a number of situations, anyone armed an AK would have been a target.
The distinctive weapon features wwere used as an identifying feature. In Iraq, today, that identifying friend/ foe feature is forfeit with the ISF being Warsaw Pact equipped.

7/09/2006 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Tacer round coloring, green (them) vs red (US) also was an identifing feature.

Anyone one know what colors the ISF fires?

We also used selective fire vs full auto as an audio indenifier.
Guess which we were.

7/09/2006 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger Db2m said...

M. Simon,

re: "Is Addiction Real?"

I'm not entirely without sympathy for aspects of your quest. I too, think it is hypocritical for chronic-pain-free people to condemn people who suffer from chronic pain as "junkies", because they need more medication than society says is acceptable in order to control their pain. But in your quest to "render" substances such as heroin, meth, and cocaine "safe", we hereby part company, with myself planted on the deck of the liner, watching you throw yourself overboard.

If there are no "addictive drugs", only "addictive personalities" (i.e. imperfect people or "sinners"), then does that mean that only the Pope hisself is immune from drug addiction?

Why not voluntarily sign up, in the interest of Science & Humanity, to have Meth "involuntarily" injected into you several times a day. According to your theory, 6 months later you should be able to walk away cold turkey, with no problems. Ah, but you suppose you have an "Out". You will say, "No one would volunteer for such an experiment except for someone with an addictive personality." Well, try it anyway (we will accept your disclaimer) and let the Scientific Community (and yourself) find out whether you have an addictive personality, or conversely (should you experience "withdrawal difficulties" and have need of "detox"), establish once for all, through your own personal cognizance of not having an addictive personality, that the aforemention Meth is really addictive after all, and you would be free to drop your obsessive online quest to establish otherwise.

This would be heroically in the interest of Science & Humanity, and besides all that, would it not be putting your fanny where your mouse is? :-)

7/09/2006 08:32:00 PM  
Blogger The_Head_Jimmy said...

I don't know if someone else has seen THIS yet but it turns out frigging Ian Fleming was a frigging visionary. Except maybe for the hot chicks part.

7/09/2006 09:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Db2m,
I had a friend in college who worked with a guy that chose bioluminescence in marine algae as his field of study for his Phd:
Those poor addictive algae needed large quantities of Pharmaceutical Grad Meth in order to perform their light shows up to his expectations/experimentations.
Don't think he wrote too much about the stuff that made it's way home with him.
He once stopped at a Diner/Gas Station near my Hometown North of Bakersfield and ordered a Ham and Cheese Sandwich.

No problem for our home grown down-home waitress serving this long-haired, bespectacled and beaded, levi-wearing Hippy:
She stuck it in the Microwave and brought it promptly to him firmly stuck to the Plate:
She neglected to take off the Saran Wrap! :-)
Them Okies from Muskogee sure do have a sense of humor!

7/09/2006 10:37:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Here's Jimmy's LINK:
He's busy buying Flak Jackets for his Buddies to replace the standard-issue Canuckistanian Models.

7/09/2006 10:42:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Northern Ontario soldier dies this morning in Afghanistan
---
Our thanks and prayers, Jimmy.
---
Depeche Mode and the World Trade Center

7/10/2006 02:56:00 AM  
Blogger Starling David Hunter said...

Doug said " Starling:
The folks we KNOW that's not true for are the Wahhabists in Saudi Arabia: And the politicians there act like the politicians in Dubai or DC to keep their pork on the table.
(just had to get in the P word)"

True indeed. The Saudis are not our friends. They are not building any "American universities" there, nor are they trying to attract Western tourists or, for that matter, much Western capital either. Democratic political reform is negligible and the basic freedoms which we as Americans take for granted are all but a mirage (just had to work the M word).

Were it not for the dozen or so really wonderful Saudi students I have taught and met in the last year, I'd be tempted to write the whole place off as a lost cause. Maybe it still is and I just don't see it. It wouldn't be the first time I didn't see what was plainly so! ;-)

7/10/2006 03:18:00 AM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Db2m,

It is not my theory any more. It is the theory of the NIDA. Argue with them.

You know the deal. If you don't like the science argue with the scientists.

I'm just a reporter.

7/10/2006 04:09:00 AM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Db2m,

Besides the question was always the wrong question.

Are people that need insulin insulin addicts?

If we give up the idea that drugs are addicting the we can ask fundamental questions. Like why do people take drugs? Are they perhaps self medicating for problems not fully understood or treated?

My take: if you want to cut down on drug abuse first start with child abuse.

Suppose the people who take meth are not different from the folks we prescribe Ritalin to? Excepting the Drs. visit and the better quality of the drugs?

Novel ideas to be sure. You can't think and test such ideas if drugs are the cause of the problem rather than the result.

7/10/2006 04:24:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Suppose the people who take meth are not different from the folks we prescribe Ritalin to? Excepting the Drs. visit and the better quality of the drugs?"
---
Street Meth or Pharmaceutical Ritalin:
That's a close call.
One thing for sure:
Ritalin is overprescribed, and parenting is underappreciated.
DDD = Discipline Deficit Disorder.
Also boring crumby/commie schools.

7/10/2006 05:22:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

...the "active ingredient" in Ritalin may be as bad as some of the adulterants in Street Meth!

7/10/2006 05:25:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hey Rat!
...or Simon:
WHY is the Ak's clip curved?

7/10/2006 05:27:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Doug: The AK rounds are fatter at one end (the non-pointy end) than they are at other (the pointy end). So, if you line up a bunch of rounds side by side and touching they will form a circle.

The effect is much less pronounced with the 5.56 MM ammo we use on M-16's, since they are smaller at the non-pointy end, but if you line up enough of them the same way you will get a curved clip. The 40 round clips for 5.56MM I have are curved, but the standard 20 round magazines are not. For that matter, the five round magazines for the AK's and SKS are not curved either, but you don't see much of those in actual use.

Short fat ammo such as .45 ACP does not require curved clips at all.

I recall a guy I knew who served in Vietnam saying that they would take three 20 round clips down to the Honda shop in the village and get them turned into a 57 round clip. You can bet those were curved. When ambused they really lit up the jungle with return fire - but it was not clear oiy did any good - except psychcologically.

7/10/2006 08:05:00 AM  
Blogger Graytooth said...

....well according to Tammy Bruce, I'm completley wrong about the Palestinians wanting America to come in and help out......

**

Those Poor, Victimized Palestinian Civilians

Apparently aren't to be pitied nor are they victims at all. Instead, it's now completely clear they like what's been happening and completely support it. Surprise!

A new poll finds the so-called Palestinian civilians completely support the terrorism their terrorist government has unleashed. Kidnapping. Random and non-targeted rocket attacks into a neighboring country. Homicide bombings. Not only do they like it, they want it to continue.

Poll: Palestinians back Shalit abduction

An overwhelming majority of Palestinians support the abduction of IDF soldier Cpl Gilad Shalit and the firing of rockets at Israel, according to a public opinion poll published on Sunday by the Jerusalem Media Communications Center. [...]

A majority of respondents, 77.2%, expressed support for the Hamas operation that included the abduction of Shalit, while only 21.7% said they opposed it.

Also, a majority of 66.8% supported the continuation of such attacks aimed at kidnapping Israeli soldiers, compared with 30.7% who rejected them, saying they were harmful to the Palestinian national interests.

This shouldn't come as a surprise. I've noted repeatedly here and on Tammy Radio that if one was to take the Palestinians seriously, and not infantilize them, then you have to face what it meant when they all voted in one of the most barbric groups in the world to govern them.

Even the Germans never voted for Hitler. The Palestinian "people" are proving themselves to be as degenerate and hopeless as Arab terrorists everywhere.

**

thanks to tammybruce.com

7/10/2006 08:31:00 AM  
Blogger The_Head_Jimmy said...

Thanks Doug.

7/10/2006 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger Tom Paine said...

Cedarford (6:47 pm)

Non sequiturs drenched in snot do not refute argument.

Neither do any of the other logical fallacies in your post.

You will have to do your own homework on that, however.

www.fallacyfiles.org

7/10/2006 11:54:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

rwe,
And the M-14 7.62 was not curved because? ;-)

7/10/2006 03:07:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/10/2006 04:02:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

Doug: The M-14 uses a 20 round managine, so like the M-16 it is too short to need to be curved.

20 round was the standard M-16 magazine for years, but they came out with a 30 round mag and they may be more common now - and it is curved.

7/10/2006 05:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Gotcha, and Rat too in the next thread.
Thanks.

7/10/2006 06:33:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

Starling:
Michael Scheuer, former CIA employee was on a BBC Worldservice program and I was reminded that the Clinton government called off airstrikes against Bin Laden because of Persian Gulf Royals falconing in Afghanistan. Scheuer referred to them as "Emiraties."
(Bin Laden was visiting the Royals almost daily at their luxurious hunting camps.)

Scheuer said that the US was also negotiating the sale of F-16's at the time and did not want to ruin the deal.

Apparently Bin Laden has been known to them since long before 9/11. The extent of their support is not so apparent at least to the general public.

7/11/2006 03:04:00 AM  

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