Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Baghdad again

Stuff happening in Baghdad. Zeyad at Healing Iraq said:

I've been stuck at my aunt's house in Adhamiya since Sunday night. If you had followed the news, you would have learned by now that Adhamiya, which is the largest Sunni district in Baghdad, is witnessing fierce clashes since Sunday night, mostly between armed groups in police uniform, who had attempted to enter the area, and Adhamiya residents.

The district has been sealed off and no one can leave or enter the area. Electric power has been cut off for the last 48 hours, and the fighting severely damaged our street generator this morning.

I'm on dial up now so I have to sign off. I probably won't be able to post again until tomorrow night. Hopefully the situation would have calmed down by then; it's extremely tense at the moment.

Now the newspapers say:

Baghdad street battle smacks of open civil war

Post: Little Is Clear About Baghdad Battle

The Washington Post article above says:

From the beginning, it was unclear who was attacking and who was defending. Adhamiyah residents, who spoke in telephone interviews on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution, said gunfire erupted early Monday morning, an hour or two after midnight. U.S. military authorities said that unknown gunmen started shooting at an Iraqi army patrol and that an estimated 50 insurgents later attacked a checkpoint manned by U.S. and Iraqi troops. ...

For the next several hours, residents said, streets empty of everyone but fighters echoed with patter from AK-47 assault rifles, the deeper thump-thump-thump of RPK machine guns and the occasional explosion of a rocket-propelled grenade or mortar shell. The fighting flowed up Omar bin Abdulaziz Street, a broad road that is lined by produce stalls and markets and is home to one of Baghdad's most famous bookstores.

There's a special report at the Pajamas Media site including a map of where the clashes took place. That account may be a little a bit more prosaic than the Reuters account bannered "civil war". Apparently a police station was attacked by insurgents in a Sunni area and the Interior Ministry sent reinforcements which were then viewed with suspicion by the inhabitants. Another clash which may have been unrelated to the first took place in the vicinty of a nearby mosque. The fighting has died down now. Messages I've received from an acquaintance in Iraq suggest that fear of militias thrives in the air of unrelieved tension as people wait for the political deadlock to break. My own personal impression from the messages is that people are waiting for America to act decisively simply because they don't think the Iraqis can break the deadlock themselves, and can't understand what is causing this apparent paralysis. I really couldn't bring myself to explain either just what factors were causing the delay, having seen very little definite information about what exactly might be done to break the deadlock.


Blogger John Aristides said...

From what I've been hearing, the Coalition and Iraqi forces are planning a second (third?) clearing of Baghdad. I'm guessing the news got out, and the insurgents aren't waiting on events.

Of course, this could be blood-letting by the Shia "police" instead. I guess we'll find out.

4/18/2006 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Trying to kick off a civil war, again, probably? Sounds sort of deliberately chaotic.

4/18/2006 08:57:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

I don't think it has to be kicked off, dan, rather that it already is.

4/18/2006 09:08:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

I mean Civil War 2.0.

4/18/2006 09:11:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

A little O/T good news.

4/18/2006 10:08:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Our weakness is the liberalism of our system of democractic government. The splodey-dopes have attacked us at our roots... not so foolishly. Time will tell if their simplistic ploy is fruitful. For the sake of all that is good, I hope not.

4/19/2006 12:10:00 AM  
Blogger sam said...

Real bad news in Afghanistan:

The news comes in part from an interview with Hamid Mir, the only journalist to conduct face-to-face interviews with Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri in the wake of 9-11.

While the war dragged on in Iraq, Mullah Omar and other Taliban leaders returned to Pakistan, gained thousands of new recruits, secured control of much of the tribal areas, and launched the re-conquest of Afghanistan.

The Taliban soldiers are now accompanied by advisers and regulars from the Iranian army and, according to Mir, within Afghanistan, Mullah Omar has received visits from his old friend and fellow jihadi, Osama bin Laden.

Bad News

4/19/2006 01:05:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Mission of Frustration in Afghan Villages

"We get that every single time we go to a village," he said. "There's never any bad guys, there've never been any bad guys, and if there were any, they'd tell us immediately."
He attributed the reticence to a combination of fear and tradition. "It's part of their code . . . to shelter even your worst enemy if asked to do so," he said.

This spring, with bombings and gun attacks increasing across Afghanistan and reports of neo-Taliban groups forming shadow governments in tribal areas across the border in Pakistan, U.S. officials say it is especially important to learn where the insurgents are finding support and sanctuary in Afghanistan.

Most of the serious recent attacks have occurred in Kandahar and Helmand provinces southwest of here, where Taliban forces have found common cause with opium poppy traffickers and other anti-government groups.
But Khost abuts one of Pakistan's most volatile tribal areas, North Waziristan, and its ethnic Pashtun tribes have roots on both sides of the rugged border.

More often than not, the troops return with little more than vague promises of cooperation and staunch denials of any insurgent sightings.

Although the officers have a basic knowledge of local tribal politics and try to cultivate relationships with village elders, they often feel as if they are trying to cut through a thick, polite fog.

4/19/2006 02:00:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: Baghdad - Cull the heard.
Re: Afghanistan - Let the jihadis cluster.

4/19/2006 02:35:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Re: Waziristan let the Taliban regain strength, funding, and recruits in the land of many Nukes, where "stability" hangs on the breath of the General President.
Meanwhile, our President continues the Prevent Defense, in spite of the known consequences.
Many Jihadis are clustered, few are ever bombed, despite giving aid and comfort and support to those who cross the border to kill Americans and re-institute Taliban Rule.

4/19/2006 02:56:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Special Forces CAMEL DRIVER, Afghnistan

Mystery Hangs Over Baghdad Battle
(Wretchard's Post Article)

With rumor, speculation and fear filling the void of actual knowledge, the conflicting accounts resembled "Rashomon," the classic Akira Kurosawa film in which a crime takes place and each witness tells a completely different story of what happened.

Some residents, whose accounts could not be verified, said the Iraqi army came to the aid of Adhamiyah residents and fought off a coalition of Interior Ministry police, Shiite militiamen and "Iranians" -- a term many Iraqi Sunnis use to refer to Shiites, whom they suspect of loyalty to the Shiite theocracy in neighboring Iran.

4/19/2006 03:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree, Doug. It's time for a little more offense. I don't care which friggin border the jihadis are moving across, either. They're fair game whether in Afghanistan or Pakistan or Syria or Iran. If they're attacking US or coalition troops we don't recoqnize safe haven in the ME or south Asia.

I am beginning to see the problems inherent with the "Long War" theory. I don't think it will work. It's too much like the wars in 1984 and in today's hostile political environment, the extended effort is too politically costly to maintain. Then there'e the problem of how you wage a consistent war across successive Presidencies. I'm beginning to think, we need to clean Araby's house and be done with it. The only problem there is, we don't know how to be done with it.

4/19/2006 03:15:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

With increased tension with Iran, it is obvious that an Iranian strategy to encourage civil unrest or worse in Iraq makes sense. We have unfinished work in Afghanistan and Hamas is at it again in Israel. We have foolishly been sucked into a poker game with marked cards. Fortress Israel has been at this table of this losing game for a long time and we now are in it. Why? And why is there an urgency regarding Iran to open up another front and then have them retaliate opening up ten, twenty or a hundred more? It is obvious how they will retaliate, they are doing it in every theater; suicide bombers. We are expecting an atomic attack on Washington and they go to Wal-Mart and then onto paradise. Our ally Pakistan tells us we cannot go into the tribal areas and the Taleban regroups there. The new tactic, the same as the old tactic, suicide bombers. It is an Islamic birth right. We have entered a game where we think we can raise democrats faster than they can raise suicide bombers. We can't. We were attacked by suicide bombers at every stage of the way. We will meet them on earth, heaven or most likely hell.

Now think about this folks. Think hard. If you have an enemy that is using a strategy that guarantees their "soldiers" die, will a strategy to kill their "soldiers" ever work? Not no. Not hell no. Never. If you fear to see that the deck is stacked, and you fear to change the rules of the game, you will never win by ponying up more money. A twenty five year old once sung "You don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind blows". Well there is a sharp rising wind and it is no time to raise our profile.

We did not ask to be attacked on 9/11, but this was the second assault on the same buildings. Our ships, marines, soldiers, Spanish and English trains were all attacked with the same tactics. Nineteen did it on 9/11 and Iran is bragging they have 40,000 ready to go. I believe them. There is only one strategy that will work. Go silent. Go deadly.

We have to methodically target specific political and religious leaders and kill them in small steady quiet anonomous ways. Be they sitting on the throne or preaching in a mosque, kill them one at a time. Chicago math. They kill one of us, we kill ten of them. Not soldiers, not military bases, not nuclear sites. No, target clerics, politicians and theorists. Don't like it? You will never win any other way. By the way, there is no refuge anywhere and as when Chickie Chicken Man Narducci was hit on a busy South Philadelphia street, no one saw nuttin.

4/19/2006 03:24:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My reaction to your 3:03 post.
They're all idiots. Donkeys of men.

4/19/2006 03:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay, 2167, I like the idea.

Make it so.

But then it sounds good on paper.

What happens when the team screws up on the way to the target? Or what happens when the contractors won't do the job? Or if some Saudi Prince gets whacked along with the Preacher? Or if the helicopters burn in the desert? Or the poison pen in the neck doesn't work effectively?

I'm not saying don't do it, I'm saying we should do what whatever it takes to beat back this rising Death Cult.

4/19/2006 03:42:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry, make that "2164."

4/19/2006 03:59:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

10 Blunders That Gave Rise to Radical Islam, Terrorist Regimes,
And the Threat of an American Hiroshima

By Paul L. Williams

The war on terror has become a household subject since the attacks on September 11, 2001. In reality, the jihad against America did not happen overnight. It has been coming for quite some time. "The Dunces of Doomsday" documents 10 blunders that resulted in an invigorated radical Islam, terrorism worldwide, and the coming "American Hiroshima."

The blunders documented include:

The Peanut Farmer and the Ayatollah — How the worst president in America's history permitted and invigorated the rise of radical Islam

The Great Offense Against Islam — How the invasion of Iraq under President George H. W. Bush and the installation of U.S. military bases between Islam's holy cities of Mecca and Medina sparked the holy war and the plan for the American Hiroshima

The Poppy Fields Remain in Bloom — How the war on terror could have been averted by fire-bombing the poppy fields of Afghanistan

The Clinton Follies: From the Mullahs to Monica — How the Clinton administration, which largely ignored international problems, failed to address the growing threat of Al-Qaeda after the attack on the U.S. embassies, the counterresistance in Somalia, and the attacks on the USS The Sullivans and the USS Cole

W Uses the Wrong Word — How President George W. Bush's message that Islam means peace obscured the reality that Islam means submission to Allah.

"The Dunces of Doomsday" chronicles the mistakes that have been made and provides a guide for preventing radical Islam and terrorism's dream of carrying out the "American Hiroshima."

4/19/2006 04:28:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

No problem Whit. What is a "3" among friends. I do not minimize or overly simplify the strategy. All the problems you point out can and will happen. We know Guantanamo does not work. So, stop taking prisoners. We know bravado does not work, so we need to shut up. Helicopters did crash in the desert but if an ayotollah or two would have died in Paris, they need never have been there in the first place.

4/19/2006 04:35:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

And while the debate rages as to who will kill whom and how, the question needs to be asked: with what?

Under the rules of engagement, will be Kaffir or Kosher bullets?


Here's another reason that it may be a very long war.




4/19/2006 05:19:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Like killing al-Sadr?

4/19/2006 05:20:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

And this battle doesn't seem to've panned out into anything more than "reports of confusion." Has anyone found any follow-ups with a more settled picture of causes, effects and the players involved?

4/19/2006 05:30:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

whit, 3:15 AM

"Long War" theory

I, too, think the concept hopelessly flawed and unsupported by historical precedent.

Hundred Years War
Thirty Years War
Seven Years War

How long is a long war? What public has ever knowingly supported a long war? What politician has ever sold such an idea to a public?

First Punic War 23 years
Second Punic War 17 years
Third Punic War 3 years

The Third Punic War was the last and shortest. Wonder why?

4/19/2006 05:30:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Salted the fields, right?

Let's skip to the last, rather than "muddling through the process".

4/19/2006 06:10:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Been saying that since the day the "Long War" was announced, fellows.
We'll be Staying the Course.
Enjoy the trip.

4/19/2006 06:27:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari insisted Wednesday he will be the Shiite nominee for a new term, saying it is "out of the question" that he will step down. Al-Jaafari's comments, made in a nationally televised press conference, mean the deadlock over the premiership likely will continue.

Sunni and Kurdish objections to al-Jaafari have stalled efforts to form a unity government four months after national elections.

"As a matter of principle, I think the idea of making a concession is, for me at least, out of the question," al-Jaafari said.

Another day on the road to democracy. Any other good ideas?

4/19/2006 06:33:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Hey D.R.,

Tony Blankley of Real Clear Politics is saying -

"Politically unpleasant as it may be, they should promptly order a court of inquiry pursuant to Article 135 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice to determine if, as is widely suspected, or if not, the current military clamor for Secretary Rumsfeld to be fired involves any acts of insubordination."

4/19/2006 06:37:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

I wonder where Tony Blankley learned to salute?

4/19/2006 06:40:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

ahh, but why is it Mr al-Jaafari "must" be the problem.
Could it not be the Sunni representitives, the Insurgent population of the last three years, that is holding up the process.
Why are the Sunni portrayed as the staunch US supporters and Mr al-Jaafari as the "bad guy"?
If a Federal Iraq is important, why are the Kurds not "pressured".

Mr al-Jaafari and his Bloc are standing firm, despite repeated reports to the contrary. He could sit pat for years, wait and watch.

We are on Course, enjoy.

4/19/2006 06:41:00 AM  
Blogger Karridine said...

"Sshhh... I'm just a reporter, but I'm fanning the coals as fast as I can!"

* * * * *
Different subject:

wonders of Islam and
the criminality of (Thai PM) Taksin.

Apparently, some of the MP3s I
regularly post there UPSET him and his friends...

It might have been "Its In the Koran!"
or "Global Islamic Media Person=GIMP!"
or "Why Arab Armies LOSE!"
or "Pancake Corrie"
or "Zombie Explains France"
or "IslamoFascism in Sweden" by Fjordman
or "Rick Rescorla, American HERO!"

But I'm asking ALL Y'ALL to please
download an MP3 or 4 for your own pleasure, and to share with other Americans!
"Vicki and James" is poignant... touching...

I have a NEW blog at
and I'll KEEP POSTING MP3's for y'all...

That's how I came to think of you, 'cuz
I'm gonna record "Immigrants? This is AMERICA!" tomorrow, and I thought you'd like to listen when I post it.

You might also let your friends know about my hacked blog,

Praise the Lord, and
Thanks for passing the ammunition!

Karridine, faithful Belmonter

4/19/2006 06:41:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

2164, from Newt.

4/19/2006 06:42:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


Looking at this bio, I see no military history.

4/19/2006 06:45:00 AM  
Blogger Karridine said...

My blog was HACKED this morning, and now I can see it, but can't post to it.

(These were truncated by the Posting Gremlin in my earlier post, up there)

4/19/2006 06:46:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

Right on DR, I am sure we can create a brigade or two. By the way, while I am in such a good mood. May I suggest that if you never slid a food tray in a chow hall please refrain from calling Guanatamo, Gitmo. I broke two teeth listening to Chris Mathews.

4/19/2006 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

His daddy was carreer Army, Newt is a brat, born to it.
Mr Blakley was Newt's Press man

4/19/2006 06:48:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

2164: Behind the visible jihadis are the radical imams and madrassas that recruit them.

And behind THEM are the money men of the Golden Chain, plus the Iranians.

Cut off the financial support, and the jihad organizations will wither

4/19/2006 06:49:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I've slid my share of food trays.
Chris Matthews, doubt if he spent much time in the chow line.

4/19/2006 06:51:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

I knew that DR. Just a spurious comment to a wider audience, but thanks for paying attention

4/19/2006 06:55:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

papa bear,
Though my memory had gotten worse with time, I do recall that Golden Chain list. I believe the first I saw it was two years ago, as a freshman Clubber.
Tell me, if you know, have any of the names changed, since then?
Were there any mysterious deaths amongst the listees in the last two years?

The answer is a sure indicator of the seriousness our Government places on this War.

4/19/2006 07:01:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Hope is alive, guys
Scott McCellen, the Presidents Press Agent has resigned.
Great News!

Now, I have never met Mr McCellen and I have no doubt he is a nice and honorable fellow.
He was not a great Press Agent, though, for Mr Bush.
Doubt if Mr Flieshcer(sp) would return, he was GOOD.

Hope they find a GREAT replacement.

4/19/2006 07:10:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

2164 wrote:

"We have foolishly been sucked into a poker game with marked cards. Fortress Israel has been at this table of this losing game for a long time and we now are in it.


We have to methodically target specific political and religious leaders and kill them in small steady quiet anonomous ways. Be they sitting on the throne or preaching in a mosque, kill them one at a time. Chicago math. They kill one of us, we kill ten of them."

I guess you haven't followed the Israeli/Palestinian issue very carefully. This 'they kill 1 we kill 10" sort of strategy agmented by assinations has been pursued by Israel for decades. Eventually even the Israeli's noticed that it failed to acheive the objectives. Now they are trying 'the fence'.

4/19/2006 07:11:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Accoding to the NY Times:

Bush said McClellan had "a challenging assignment."

Man is that an understatement. Can you imagine trying to put a rational spin on the policies formulated by this administration???

4/19/2006 07:14:00 AM  
Blogger Smacko said...

Rummy for WH press secretary!!!!

Then DR can bitch about him every DAY!!

4/19/2006 07:20:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

My nomination for new press sec'y.

4/19/2006 07:20:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The trouble, ash, was they didn't really kill ten to one.

There have not been 90 Palistinians killed and 200 wounded by the ISF since Tuesday's attack in Tel Aviv.

If 90 does not do the trick, try 900.

That is War. Not tit for tat.
Either the Palistinians or the Israelis will have to be removed from the ground.
There will be never be a
"two state solution".
In Europe, after WWII, MILLIONS of people were "Relocated for Peace".

Someone has to lose, before there can be "Peace". It has always been that way, I see no reason to expect a change in Human Nature, now.

4/19/2006 07:22:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

paste a couple of quotes where "I" complained about Mr Rumsfeld.

not links to complaints by others, but my own words of disapproval.
There are not many, from years worth of postings.

Then the comments are about Policy, not the man.

4/19/2006 07:27:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


"The international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids."

4/19/2006 07:29:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Chompin' a cigar, that would send them scurrying, wouldn't it?

4/19/2006 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The General knew AIDS/HIV was a Commi conspiracy, even before there was an AIDS/HIV.

He'd be the one to tame the Press Corpse.

4/19/2006 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Yeh--he was the goat of the movie, but maybe he was, as Patton said of the sleeping soldier on his visit to his new command after Kasserine Pass, "Leave him alone, he's the only son of a bitch around here that knows what he's doing."

4/19/2006 07:40:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

"Women... women sense my power, and they seek the life essence. I do not avoid women, Mandrake, but I do deny them my essence."

Helen Thomas... Oh, man there's a screenplay there somewhere..

4/19/2006 07:41:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr1 said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

4/19/2006 07:46:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But back to Baghdad, the underlying challenge is the US seems to be acting like a Real Estate agent.
Putting together a "Deal" where everyone "Wins".

After 35 years of Oppression, there has to be a "new" Loser.
The Shia are resolved, they will not fill that role, for US, again.

Remember we ABANDONED them in '91, they know the value of a President's promise.

4/19/2006 07:50:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...


The Israelis have pretty well abandoned the policy and, granted, they did not have a strict 10:1 ratio but the policy was basically 'you hit us we will hit you back harder' which incorporates the same deterrence idea. Bulldozing suiciders family homes was one aspect of this policy.

As far as your notion that one side of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict will have to lose; it certainly doesn't sound very piratical. Sure, there is historical precedent for people being relocated but there is also historical precedent for genocide – History itself doesn’t supply much justification on its own. Ariel Sharon once proposed that ‘Palestinians already have a country of their own, it was called Jordan’. Even the Bulldozer himself came to realize the impracticality of that solution. Do you think we should move the Israelis out since they were last in? Are you on the side of the Iranian President on this issue?

4/19/2006 07:50:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Ash, these things are purpose-aimed at civilians.

Go into the links and check out the x-rays. The victims, live or dead, end up carrying more hardware than an aisle at Home Depot.

4/19/2006 07:55:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

No, I do not believe the Israelis would lose the War.

So far only one side of the Israeli / Palistinian conflict has been at War, the Palistinians.

Move well beyond dozing the bonber's home, doze the block, 100 homes around the bombers, redisplace the refugees, they have been refugees, now, for three of four generations, keep 'em moving.

Title of land is secured by force, even here in the US.
The Government retains Title to the land, as per recent SCoUS rulings.

That is what War is about. Death & displacement of populations. There has not been one in Palistine, yet, I fear there will be, soon.
The Palistinians will lose, far more than they bargained for.

Armegeddon is in Israel, as I recall.

4/19/2006 08:01:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

You know, GWB could take the bull by the horns, and announce that the Jihad-with-nukes is just too intolerably stupid an idea for the Jihad's targets to abide, and therefore, one of the two has to stop.

Continue the jihad with Iran's facilities kept bombed flat perpetually, or, stop the Jihad, and keep the nukes--so long as the Jihad is stopped, completely.

Hold the Mullahs hostage for a change.

I know, too simple.

4/19/2006 08:04:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Check out the goings on in Darfur, ash.
Just move the locale to Palistine.
Exchange Sudan for Israel in the scenario.

The World will "carry on", as in Darfur.

4/19/2006 08:05:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Buddy, I don't dispute that they are targetting civilians with vicious weapons.

4/19/2006 08:06:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

DR, so are you saying the Israelis are like the Janjiweed carrying out an ethnic cleansing? This is something you encourage?...or you at least think it is inevitable therefore we should acquiese and even facilitate?

4/19/2006 08:10:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I think, that because we did not enter Syria at the end of the Iraqi Offensive, we did not defeat the Enemy in the western ME.

Within the next 18 months the tensions between Iran and the World (US) will ignite. When they do, Hamas and Hezzbollah will attack Israel.
Syria may as well.

When the "real" War starts, the World will little care about Palisinians. The Israelis will take the opportunity to redraw the map.

IMO, by not being aggresive enough, early, we have ensured greater losses, later.

4/19/2006 08:17:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Ash, please, have you EVER seen a retaliation precede a provocation? You must get your sequences lined up with how they factually proceed.

Palis bomb, Israelis retaliate.

Palis bomb because they don't want Israel to exist. Israel is perfectly willing to let Palestine exist. Fundamental facts, dude.

4/19/2006 08:17:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


What has the Janjiweed analogy to do with the Isreali's?

To claim this moral equivolence is to take the Pali's side in the "genocide" of the Palestinian nation. Is that what you propose to defend?

4/19/2006 08:21:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Buddy, the cycle of violence has occurred for a long long time now. Depending on how far one wants to go back to the 'first' attack you can cast whom is retaliating against whom pretty well anyway you like. Both sides claim they are retaliating against the sins of the other. The trick is figuring out how to get it to stop.

The 'state' that the Israelis are willing to allow the Palestinians to 'exist in' isn't very habitable (mind you the Israelis are not of one mind on this as the Palestinians are not of 'one mind' on Israels existence).

4/19/2006 08:26:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

buddy is totally right, in that.
Today and yesterday the Israelis WERE willing to compromise, with ever more accomadations.
But the Palistinians, according to Mr Arafat, would kill him if he accepted Israel's existence. Could well be true that they would have.

When given the Opportunity of the Regional War or WWIII the Israelis will take it, I believe.

4/19/2006 08:27:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

danmyers, it is Desert Rat who introduced the analogy in his 8:05 post.

4/19/2006 08:27:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

DR, the value of their 'accomadations' is debatable. The rule of Jerusalem, control of aquifers, right of return, and borders (1948, 1967 or 'the fence') are just some of the issues of merit. I grant that the Palestinian positions are often not very coherent and they lack control of their own population. The Israelis are complicit in this as well (i.e. by denuding what ever power the PA had).

In short, picking a side doesn't do service to solving the problem.

4/19/2006 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


Speed-reading between the blog and work is not my friend. Apologize.. OK, DR, what about it?


The Palestinians elected their government that still says Isreal has no right to exist. There will has spoken.

Do you still stand by your statement? - snip(...as the Palestinians are not of 'one mind' on Israels existence).

4/19/2006 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

ash, 7:11 AM

trying 'the fence'

As you may have gathered, I do try to keep up with events in Israel to a, albeit, limited degree.

As you surely must know, Israel is trying both approaches, i.e. taking out terrorists and continuation of the wall. Indeed, April has all the makings of becoming a record month in, how did you say that, oh, yes, "assassinations" of "bad guys." As an American citizen, I can't quite get my head around the concept of calling capital punishment "assassination." But, to each his own point of view, he said, non-confrontationally.

Some are claiming that the failure to complete the wall is the reason for the last successful "mass murder" of "innocent Israeli civilians." Since I have never had much confidence in the wall as a realistic solution for Palestinian antipathy, I will reserve further judgment, not wishing to add insult to injury.

The problems of Baghdad, whether recent accounts are exaggerated or not, and our Iraqi policy in general has much in common with the Israeli idea of containment (the wall), I think. We will hold the bad guys in discrete manageable areas, under loose, extremely tolerant supervision, while the good guys maintain redoubts. Since I cannot think of a single instance, since the coming of gunpowder, where structural boundaries ultimately had that desired result, it seems an act of desperation rather than sound strategic planning.
Significantly, however, the defeat of an enemy in detail and the imposition of the rule of law on the defeated have, since the time of the Romans, been very strategically effective.

4/19/2006 08:50:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

danmyers, my understanding of the issues in the last Palestinian election was that it revolved around good governance and not policy vis a vis Israel. I think it is a mistake to read the election as a referendum on Israel's existence.

allen, capital punishment involves trials, due process, and the ability to defend oneself against the accusations made.

4/19/2006 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen, 7:55 AM

The "Peace of the Brave"

4/19/2006 08:59:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I am not debating the "rightousness" of the Israeli position vis a vie the Palistinians.
The Pali's have gotten a raw deal, from the World, not just Israel.
That all these people are multi generational refugees is the cause of the problem.
That no Arab Society, like Egypt or Jordon or ... would "take them in". Gaza was never "independent" it was an Ottoman "no where" or Egyptian, in modern times. The "west bank", Jordon, never anything but, since the Ottomans left.

From ABC News...

" ... according to a spokesperson for the Hamas-led government.

"The suicide bombing was a result of increased Israeli attacks on Palestinians," Sami Abu Zhuri said. "Israel is to blame."

The attack was the first suicide bombing since Hamas took power in January.

Diplomatic Strains

The Hamas government has refused to bow to international pressure to recognize Israel as a nation and insists on its right to use violence. ... "

At some point the Real War will start, the Israeli will respond, in kind and beyond.

It will not be "fair" nor "pretty".
But it will be Peace.

4/19/2006 09:00:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Yep, it's not so complex as you would have it, Ash.

Who can stop the war?

Israel? Nope, not without evaporating.

But the Arabs can stop the war today if they want.

In this case, one can abide by the self-evident truth--without having to learn the brick-by-brick history of every block in the Holy land.

4/19/2006 09:02:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

How often does any Grievance Cult help its members compete on the level playing field? And if the level playing field is not the objective of true progress, then what is?

4/19/2006 09:07:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...


This a great read - Michael Totten's travelogue of a spontaneous road trip from Istanbul into Iraqi Kurdistan.

4/19/2006 09:12:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But, for the course buddy has laid out to be followed, Iran would have to agree.
The Mohammedan Wars are ALL intertwined. From Kashmere to Bangladesh. Pakistan to Iraq. Tehran to Paris and beyond.

They are not individual Wars, but a series of battles within the greater conflict. When seen in that context the picture becomes both clearer and more panaramic then makes most people comfortable.

The scope and scale of the War has never been adequately explained, in fact it is, in reality, denied by the US Government.

4/19/2006 09:12:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


Really, do you believe that the Palestinians didn't know Hamas was striking Isreal?

From the Washington Post - January 22, 2006

"Hamas, formally known as the Islamic Resistance Movement, is at war with Israel and is classified by the U.S. government as a terrorist organization. But its reputation for competence and accountability in providing social services has made it a stiff rival of the secular Fatah movement, which runs the Palestinian Authority and has long been the largest party in the Palestinian territories."

Granted, their "social services" is mentioned, but please cut us ol' hicks some slack...

4/19/2006 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

I know you're not a Bush fan, Ash, but there is timeless truth in his phrase "the soft bigotry of low expectations".

It's the UN and it's deal with Arafatism that has put the Palis to begging handouts.

Left up to Israel, Palestine would be a strong, good peaceful prosperous neighbor--good trading neighbors strengthen one another, and can build value-adding plant, rather than defense plant.

4/19/2006 09:14:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Rat--be nice to have Iranian secret police working on stopping, rather than increasing, the Jihad, though. There's Saudism, too, but the West has far more economic control over that front.

4/19/2006 09:21:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

ash, 8:58 AM

With respect, you confuse a legal construct with the laws of the jungle and war. And the PA is a jungle and the PA is at war with Israel. But I won't quibble, "taking off the head" whether by order of the court or as the matter of self-preservation, it is all the same to me.

When a government gives public approval to cross border depredation by its citizenry, that is an act of war, covered by the Geneva Accords, I believe. You must hope that Israel does not exercise fully its rights to retaliation under the Accords. If it does so, it may act with impunity to take and hold the territory necessary to insure its sovereignty. Personally, I'm with you, Israel should act within the rule of law, the sooner the better.

4/19/2006 09:22:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

Then again, there's this..."'Mother of the Martyrs' Joins Hamas Parliament".

Ash, I could go on for a while.. Surely you don't think we are idiots, do you?

4/19/2006 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

If i were GWB, I'd start referring to the Iran Bomb as the Jihad Bomb.

4/19/2006 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger Handsome Hu said...

re: 2164's critiques

I think its important to remember that if one considers a terrorist network as a sort of pyramid, each 'level' of the pyramid may have different vulnerabilities and strengths and so the means to destroy these different origins of the terrorist threat will vary from the targetted assassinations (that in addition to harming enemy leadership etc, also make us feel safer) to the strange and inevitably appeasement-esque pursuit of "preference divergence".

Once you wipe out the top parts of the pyramid, your predator drones and AC-130s become less useful tools as far as destroying the remnant origins of terrorists.

Perhaps what is odd about Iraq is that we've pummelled several pyramids to largely their foundations, but there always seems to be another pyramid sprouting up or becoming newly obvious.

Maybe the issue is that we've just several pyramid foundations left and just a few bricks here and there can reconstitute a capable network (hence that although casualties and car bombs are down, they are still present). Maybe its these foundations that are the most difficult to raise if you are uncomfortable with genocide. If thats the case, the "Long War" is fought on Huntington's battlefield, and the tools are, again, words, pens and police.

It seems eerily like 9/10, but if we were successful in a given region of raising the given terrorist pyramids, what else would we expect to eventually see?

4/19/2006 09:25:00 AM  
Blogger geoffgo said...

Tony Snow of Fox News is one of the names in the running for press secretary. Word is he may not take it, to young family. B^(

4/19/2006 09:27:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

We had that at one time, buddy.
I was in Panama, when the Shah move there.
President Carter arranged for the Shah to leave Iran, as I recall.
With him gone, we lost the antiJihad Secret Police.
Mr Carter thought it a "good thing".

4/19/2006 09:27:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Yep--Carter may or may not've stopped the Jihad in its infancy--by sticking with an ally, in this case the Shah--but he sure as hell did the wrong thing in hindsight.

4/19/2006 09:32:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...


Hamas stance on Israel is well known and I presume very well known in the territories. Nevertheless, there were primarily two parties running and the incumbent was notoriously corrupt and it was this corruption that predominated the political dialogue, in my view. Basically the choice was the corrupt incumbents or the ‘other guy’.


True, I am not a fan of Bush and his policies but he is not always wrong, by any account. I think there is much more to the Israeli/Palestinian problem than the UN and Arafatism. Israel and the US and many others all play a part. Israel’s actions and policies do not lend one to the view that they wanted a Palestinian nation peaceful and prosperous alongside them. It was only recently that the dream of Eretz Israel has been abandoned (not all have abandoned that dream by a long shot) and that precludes a Palestinian nation on the west bank of the Jordan River. Israel’s discriminatory practices against non-Jews make life difficult for Palestinians living within Israel’s borders. In short, portraying the conflict as Israel Good, Pali Bad doesn’t do justice to the issues.

4/19/2006 09:32:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Which is, of course, why the li'l feller strives so mightily to smear GWB.

"Ever'thin wuz jus' FINE befo thet BUSH come along!"

4/19/2006 09:35:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

The war began in '48, Ash--the Arabs trying to eliminate Israel. Nothing has changed from that auspicious beginning. Sure there's been a reaction in Israel--jeez--

4/19/2006 09:39:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

fast food
" if we were successful in a given region of raising the given terrorist pyramids, ..."

In which Region have we accomplished this task?

The Sunni pyramids still exist, but have stood down the Insurgency while the Political Process works itself out.
The Shia pyramids, in varied Militias still exist, Mr al-Sadr still walks the earth as does his Shia rival SCIRI's militia commanders.
The Kurds are secure in their mountain redoubt.

The criminal elements of the aQI are being dispatched by Iraqis, either the ISF or the Militias doing the dirty wet work.

That is not enough, not nearly
enough to intimidate others.

4/19/2006 09:40:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Brezhnev Doctrine--once Communism (or, any system , then, right?) has been established, it is forever legitimate. Israel is not an argument against that--Israel merely wants to start the clock at the beginning, rather than after the scattering of the tribes. That's enough of a point to pick sides on, for me.

4/19/2006 09:44:00 AM  
Blogger Eggplant said...

Buddy Larsen said...

"You know, GWB could take the bull by the horns, and announce that the Jihad-with-nukes is just too intolerably stupid an idea for the Jihad's targets to abide, and therefore, one of the two has to stop."

Timing is everything. After we initiate our military options against Iran, we'll proabaly have a regional war in the Persian gulf with all the unavoidable economic implications. Here are some significant timing issues:

1) The diplomacy option must be obviously exhausted. The Europeans need to have their noses rubbed in the fact that the diplomatic option was played out to the fullest possible extent and failed utterly.

2) It's possible that the Iranians are dangling a decoy nuclear enrichment facility at us while the real work is proceeding at a hidden site. We don't want to destroy a near empty nuclear reprocessing complex containing only a few prototype centrifuges. We don't want a repeat of the Iraqi WMD cockup due to bad intelligence (MSM reports can not be trusted). The Israelis probably have the straight scoop on what is actually happening in Iran.

3) The Iraq thing remains half baked. Iran has almost certainly preposition terrorist cells in Iraq, Europe and probably in the US. The Iranians appear to have loaded the Iraqi Parliament with sleepers (that's probably why the Iraqis can not form a government). The Iranians will activate their terrorists and sleepers the moment we launch our attack against Iran. The Iranian terrorists and sleepers need to be taken out now (that's probably what's currently going on in Baghdad).

4) The military action against Iran needs to be properly timed in terms of the US Congressional elections in November. The American public has a memory span of about a couple weeks to a couple months depending on the significance of the issue and how the MSM plays it. In the context of the November elections, the absolute earliest that Bush should initiate military operations against Iran would be September. Again, there's no point in achieving military victory in July if it is to be thrown away in November through political success by the LLL.


On a different topic. The biggest thing that bothers me about Afghanistan is not the Taliban survivors but the opium production. Afghanistan has become the world's main producer of heroin. This is a big problem.

4/19/2006 09:45:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


Sounds like I'm trying to quibble, I'm not. You just happened to be there..after a phone call with a person that is so PC it dripped from the phone.. And there you were :-). Shows my state of mind, not yours...

4/19/2006 09:46:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat, 9:00 AM

If my memory is functioning well, I recall that some 60% of Jordan is Palestinian. Of course, there would be many more there if it weren't for Mr. Arafat's little indiscretion of attempted coup d’etat in 1970; whereupon, with bloody fury, the Jordanian government drove many Palestinians out of the country.

You may recall that Kuwait had taken in several hundred thousand peace-loving Palestinians, at least to the extent of guest worker status. When Mr. Saddam Hussein overran Kuwait in 1990, these Palestinians joined the Iraqi's in pillaging the country. With the restoration of Kuwait, most Palestinians were expelled.

As you may recall, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians made the Lebanon their home. Mr. Arafat resided there after his expulsion from Jordan in 1970. The experience of Lebanon was much like that of Jordan and Kuwait, a "cycle of violence" as ash calls it.

It does seem that wherever the peace-loving Palestinians show-up, so do the Four Horsemen, in short order. Yes, wherever they call home will have its "cycle-of-violence", host country notwithstanding.

You may agree with me that the PA would be better governed by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Perhaps, some portion of western Iraq would also benefit from the civilizing impact of Jordanian administration. Indeed, were the Hashemites to reassert their ancient right to parts of Saudi Arabia, including the cities of Mecca and Medina, I might be well disposed.

4/19/2006 09:49:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Ah. yes. the heroin-based religious purity war.

4/19/2006 09:52:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...


No, I wasn't there and my opinion of the issue is derived from my following it all the best I can. I do not believe there is very much affection for Israel in the Palestinian community, to put it very mildly. Nor, for that matter, is there very much affection for the Palestinians in the Israeli community.

buddy, I find it interesting that you should peg the war's beginning at '48. Aren't you one of the posters here who reviles the UN? Why is that particular decision a good one in your eyes but all others suitable to be ignored?

4/19/2006 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

All that really matter, buddy, is today and tommorrow
Hoy y manana
Yesterday is long gone, no to be seen, again.

As is evident by their Govermental Statements, Palistine is at War with Israel.

There is little doubt of this.

When Israel responds, with WAR, it will be justified and lethal.
The Palistinian "problem" will no longer be Israels, 'cause the Palistinians will be "moved along", or they'll die.
Just like in Darfur, or Poland.

When the balloon goes up, where are thirty million European Muslims going to emigrate to?

The maps of the World will be redrawn, that is Iran's real goal. Their Nuclear capacity is just a mile marker on the path to that Goal.

4/19/2006 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

The Hashemite is also the only bloodline that predates the schism, making the Hashemite acceptable to both Sunni *and* Shia.

4/19/2006 09:56:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


Did you see this? I know, the source is questionable, but there is a picture of it.

4/19/2006 09:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rat is 100% correct with his diagnosis and presription for the Israeli/Pali dilemma. Until his medicine is taken, there will be no peace.

One side must lose. Completely, forever.

You might say that applies to the donkey's current aspirations for jihad. The Dealth Cult fundamentalists must be stamped out in order to any sort of world peace.

4/19/2006 09:58:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

As a practical matter, allen, the Hashemite Kingdom could be extended to Baghdad.
The King seems competent and reasonable, as well as Mohammed's distant relative.

But I think the Brits tried that, leading eventually to Saddam.
As Mr Rumsfeld said a few weeks ago, the fellows there in Baghdad now, would be as bad as Saddam, if we left.

4/19/2006 09:59:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat,

If you are interested in seeing how life might turn out for Christians and other minorities both in Baghdad and most of Iraq, look at this short article by Brigitte Gabriel, formerly of Lebanon.


4/19/2006 10:02:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Ash, the UN started out as a force for good in the world. It hasn't fared too well under cold war, and then pc multiculti pressure. There was also that WWII thing with European Jewry left in something of an existential pickle. Plus the ancestral homeland was mainly a nomad goat pasture, it took the USSR and its AK-47s to make Israel into "the Occupation".

4/19/2006 10:02:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

whit wrote:

"Rat is 100% correct with his diagnosis and presription for the Israeli/Pali dilemma. Until his medicine is taken, there will be no peace.

One side must lose. Completely, forever."

DR, and/or whit, what will this war look like? The Israelis can occupy Gaza and the West Bank at will, they have numerous times. They can destroy the government, they can and have occupied the territories at will. So, what is this medicine you speak of? Extermination? Mass expulsion?

4/19/2006 10:11:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

And, Ash, wars have consequences. The Muslin Brotherhood sided with the Nazis in WWII (MB was formed in 30s Berlin). Look up the Grand Mufti and Hitler. Rommel always had the big tribal leaders behind him in N. Africa. In a way--and this is often lost in the history--Israel's case was that much stronger, with the Nazi/Arab alliance in mind.

4/19/2006 10:13:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Death, expulsion and submission. One side must totally dominate the other. As was done to as Japan.

If this occurs, in the long run, more lives are saved than are lost.

4/19/2006 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


How about a Mariel-like Boat lift to Cuba?

You Do have a point though. The riddle of the ages...

4/19/2006 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Whit--that point is made over and over in VD Hanson's work--that it is crueler by far to leave the killing-motivation alive.

4/19/2006 10:20:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...


Israel can occupy Eretz Israel with little military problem. The problem is the Israelis are a decent people who want to keep Israel a democratic jewish state. From what I can tell they will not, even though they could, kill, expel, and force the rest into submission...they have retained their humanity through these trying times.

4/19/2006 10:22:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I have said it, ash, the losers will move on or die.
Yes mass expulsions will be the norm.
In Israel, France, England, Holland, Spain. Peraps even in the US, depending on circumstance.
There is more than ample historical example.

The scale and scope of the coming conflict is not at all appreciated by most folks, left or right.

The Iranians, other Mohammedans and remnent Communists know how to hurt US and Europe.
They are Capable.
The belief is that if the "West" is hurt, it'll quit.

I doubt the clarity of that vision.
'Cause it's not what I foresee.

4/19/2006 10:23:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

danmyers, 9:56 AM

Yeah, I read several articles about this at the time, although the MSM, being bogged down in their Baghdad hotel quagmire, made "little" mention.

The Jordanians might have some interesting moves to make when the shooting starts. There are some old scores to settle. The King, heaven preserve him, appears to know which side has the winning hardware. The region would, I believe, benefit from the stability offered by this very acceptable monarchy.

This reminded me of trips into Mexico in 2001. At all the major border towns, the Mexicans had erected gigantic stanchions and hoisted the largest garrison flags I have ever seen. They could be readily recognized from miles away. I thought at the time a message was being sent across the border.

4/19/2006 10:28:00 AM  
Blogger DanMyers said...


No takers? The answer to the riddle of the ages is to show the people how the "Pyramids" were built..

Make them learn, as DR states, just exactly what we are capable of doing. I think it is time for the big guns to be pulled. A small demonstration of the complete destructive force that we possess. We show ours, let Iran show theirs. Let them see in the old Cold-War fashion what they can expect. A new Cold War? Possibly the only peaceful way to deal with Iran and the other Death Cultists. Howls are now appropos.

4/19/2006 10:38:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

ash, 10:11 AM


As you well know, the Israelis are not about to exterminate anybody. Case in point, the IDF has fired well over 1,000 artillery rounds into Gaza during the past few weeks, in ANSWER to unprovoked rocket attacks from Palestinians. Imagine the damage that could have been done if the Israeli government had the same nonchalance as Hamas and allowed the IDF to fire indiscriminately.

Moreover, after the mass murder in Tel Aviv last week, I would have killed every Hamas leader who stuck his head out of a hole. Fortunately for Hamas, I hold no portfolio, and the present Israeli regime has no stomach for revenge. And, yes, I most firmly support the notion of revenge - it clears the air of any pacific misgivings.

4/19/2006 10:40:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

I agree with rat--the enemies of liberty stay in power by opposing what happens to've come to be the western system.

The problem of anti-liberty systems is that the free systems give them the constant comparison, making the aggression against liberty a given, a natural force.

The aggressor is always after a man's property, for which he will fight. When the big one starts, expect migrations on the Biblical scale.

4/19/2006 10:41:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen, 10:14 AM

"Grand Mufti"

Yasser Arafat's uncle?

4/19/2006 10:42:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen,

"Grand Mufti"

Resided in palatial splendor in Germany until war's end.

Yasser didn't fall far from the tree. Something about northern Europe appeals to these guys. Switzerland?

4/19/2006 10:46:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Allen, I don't know--a Goo-goo project--?

4/19/2006 10:47:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen 10:47 AM


Do they even admit to the existence of the Zionist entity?

I'll check later. I certainly wouldn't want to disparage the character of the fellow who encouraged Der Fuehrer in the design of the "final solution." These characters just never learn - Jews and roaches are indestructible. (Of course, I mean that in the nicest possible way.)

Oh, have you seen this yet? http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,2144,1973870,00.html
Germany to Allow Opening of Huge Holocaust Archive
30 million files – 17.5 million victims.

___ Ash, now that’s genocide, of the non-parlor talk variety. And, its those numbers that make moral equivalence so infuriatingly insulting.

4/19/2006 11:02:00 AM  
Blogger Eggplant said...

Allen said...

"You may agree with me that the PA would be better governed by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Perhaps, some portion of western Iraq would also benefit from the civilizing impact of Jordanian administration. Indeed, were the Hashemites to reassert their ancient right to parts of Saudi Arabia, including the cities of Mecca and Medina, I might be well disposed."

This was attempted by the British after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. Highly educated people like T.E. Lawrence understood the importance of establishing Hashemite kingdoms in the Middle East. However it didn't work. The relatively civilized Jordanian government is all that remains of England's earlier attempts at managing the Middle East. The Baathist Party was the Arab reply to British imposed Hashemite monarchs.

I believe Bush was morally correct in attempting to establish democracy in Iraq. However if Bush's experiment in democracy fails then the only real alternative is to knock down the current political and social structure with a regional war and then put the whole works under military governors (essentially reestablish the Ottoman Empire with NATO or some international entity taking the place of the Turkish Sultan/Caliph). Needless to say, to achieve this would result in millions of casulties along with serious damage to the world's economy.

4/19/2006 11:04:00 AM  
Blogger Voltimand said...

Just to keep in sync with the somewhat yawpy tone of this comment thread, I append here the beginning of an AP report on how the West might well go about defanging Al-Quaeda. It's in the form of an attempt to "understand the root causes" of terrorist behavior, all of which suggests that more understanding, empathy, and a 12-step method would probably help:

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Sept. 11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui's isolation from family members and social support networks left him vulnerable to recruitment by al-Qaida, the terrorist network, an expert on cults testified Wednesday. Psychlogist Paul R. Martin, called by lawyers trying to save Moussaoui from the death penalty, said that French Moroccans like Moussaoui generally feel alienated from Western society and that his state of mind suffered even more when he left France in 1992 to study international business in London. "He's away from his family. He's lonely. He's complained about racism. He's in a new country, and he doesn't have any support group," Martin said, describing the period in the mid-1990s that Moussaoui began his move to radical Islam.

But he does have a support group: it's called the Democratic party.

4/19/2006 11:13:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"I believe Bush was morally correct in attempting to establish democracy in Iraq. However if Bush's experiment in democracy fails then the only real alternative is to knock down the current political and social structure with a regional war and then put the whole works under military governors..."

Exactamundo: the point is the rot, not the Liberal impulse. The ghetto from Iran to Cairo has to pulled down, in any case. If they don't like Republics, then they'll have to learn like Empire.

4/19/2006 11:25:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

allen wrote:

___ Ash, now that’s genocide, of the non-parlor talk variety. And, its those numbers that make moral equivalence so infuriatingly insulting."

Isn't that the scale of 'medicine' being contemplated here today? Another 'final solution'?

4/19/2006 11:25:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

eggplant, 11:04 AM

Your points are well taken.

There is no painless solution to the catastrophe overtaking the world. Please, understand, I am not being trite or dismissive. That is, in my opinion, a foregone conclusion. To some extent, the West can control the timing if it acts with some dispatch. However, time is not our friend, and the passage of time will tend to strengthen our adversaries and will undoubtedly make the losses you fear a more certain possibility.

You may be certain, when the smoke clears, we will all live in a completely different world. Whether it is even remotely to our liking will depend on the action taken now. It is true, "haste makes waste." It is equally true, "He who hesitates is lost."

Wish I could offer optimism, but we passed the point-of-no-return some time back. As d'rat says, we are all on the ride now.

4/19/2006 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Eggplant sees the future. Some authority has got to manage the birthplace of humanity.

That's a very interesting fact, The Nazi Grand Mufti and Arafat being close kin. Makes the pathology a tad more reasonably despicable. Who can feel empathy with the Palis, and not despise Arafat, and not be a duplicitous scoundrel? Or, hell-minion, take yer pick.

Somebody should've assassinated the Arafat snake on the kinship, or at latest, within a week or two of his hanging--was it Major Thomas Higgins?--while chortling on the phone (calls were intercepted/recorded and still exist).

If those numbers being released in Germany are so large as to boggle the mind, try taking it from statistic to tragedy (ht arts&letters.com).

4/19/2006 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...


"Another 'final solution'?"

I think you have us confused with Hamas. And, oh, GIVE ME A BREAK!

4/19/2006 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger John Aristides said...

Earlier this week I was reading David Hume's History of England, and something jumped out at me. As Hume relates it, Alfred the Great, a truly virtuous leader of men, granted his Danish enemies mercy in defeat, even though the rapine and pillaging of those terrible Danes was unsurpassed in its viciousness. Instead of slaughtering the Danes enmass, which is what they were doing to the Angles and Saxons, Alfred allowed them to become citizens and live in their own communities on the island. They were deemed equal under the law, so that murdering a Dane carried the same punishment as murdering a Saxon, and Alfred even allowed them their own Danish vice-roy to act as intermediary between the monarchy and the Danish people. For years these Danes flourished, in places like Northumbria and the "Five Boroughs", and for years England had peace. But the Danes still considered themselves first and foremost Danes, so when a new Danish invasion commenced some years later, the Danes of Northumbria and those in the Five Boroughs rose up against their Saxon neighbors and began, once again, their gruesome business of rape and pillage and wholesale slaughter. Their perfidy in the face of mercy and generosity knew no bounds, or shame. Alfred's humanistic virtues, in allowing the Danes to live freely after they had been defeated, almost led to the complete annihilation of the Anglo-Saxons in England.

It seems to me that history is full of lessons about what happens when one is not ruthless enough. Rare is the story that teaches "nice" as an imperative of survival.

4/19/2006 11:36:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

did anyone ever see the Monty Python skit where they were soldiers drilling, but using sorta umm, 'ballet' steps? And can you watch all those new march steps being tried out in the Iranian military parades, without thinking of that skit?
\:-D (sorry for being silly--it's the TV)

4/19/2006 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger Eggplant said...

Dan said...

"Exactamundo: the point is the rot, not the Liberal impulse. The ghetto from Iran to Cairo has to pulled down, in any case. If they don't like Republics, then they'll have to learn like Empire."

Yeah, but the $64,000 question is: Do we have the political horse power to manage a Middle Eastern empire? The British as an established world empire with long experience in such matters was not successful. We (the US) would have to metamorphasize from a self contained liberal democracy into a world empire (Can you imagine the United States running an empire with our current MSM, academia and moonbats?). I find the prospect of the US becoming an empire very frightening (think: Lucius Cornelius Sulla).

Unfortunately we will automatically follow that path if we revert back to a 10 September mindset with one or two of our cities getting nuked as a consequence. It's like predicting that the sun will rise.

4/19/2006 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen, 11:39

Great minds. I was thinking the same thing last evening. Then, I remembered that their air of ferocity didn't carry them very far in the Iraq war - sending little children to their deaths as mine detectors, as I recall. These dudes are your typical Muslim warriors. Bet on this, when they taste blood in real battle, they will evaporate like an Italian armored column in the face of a Matilda. (no disrespect, just historic perspective)

4/19/2006 11:52:00 AM  
Blogger John Aristides said...

How to Eliminate Iran's Nuclear Weapons, at Claremont Institute.

4/19/2006 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

eggplant, 11:41 AM

Lucius Cornelius Sulla

Another thought provoking post.

Sulla makes the generals' revolt a bit more ominous, doesn't?

Your concerns are entirely justified and, as you know, validated by a vast history of precedents. But, we are where we are. If we wanted a different world, we should have made one. Now, we must suck it up and deal with the mess we've made. That is all there is to it.

4/19/2006 12:00:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Well, comparison-wise, there's Saddam's army tearing 'em a new one in the 80s, then falling apart under a modern armored attack in Desert I (not to mention OIF). So there's that.

4/19/2006 12:01:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

No, ash, not a "final solution" at all.

There is no one to stop the flow of events. Each player to their part.
The Iranians feel they have a head of steam, that momentuen is on their side. They also have allah and the Imam's return from the well.
The Hamas and Hezzbollah players are not changing course. The Baathists in Damascus have not stepped aside.
Mr Bush and Cheney, along with Ms Clinton and Mr McCain are all options open and on the table.

The flow of time and events is swift and cascading, there is no one to stand against the current.

4/19/2006 12:02:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It's not just the Conventional Battle, that is the least of it.

The US and Europe are not Saddam's Iraq. The tactics used against Saddam may not be duplicated by the Iranians, against US.
It'll be a different kind of War all together, than Iraq vs Iran.

Our choke points are much different.

4/19/2006 12:13:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...


Sorry. I'm better now - stepped out for a moment - the trepanning was successfully performed.

4/19/2006 12:15:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

A fierce show of face by a unified West and East might slow the Iran snowball.

"Take your oil and shove it!"

4/19/2006 12:16:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

buddy, the plane to Fantasy Island, it left an hour ago.

4/19/2006 12:20:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

but we're not quiiite to the edge of the brink yet.

4/19/2006 12:22:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Look for the financial press to soon start generating some scenarios for an Iranian work-around.

This $72 oil may be pricing a zero for Iran's 5% of world-production, already.

Russia and China will make all the points they can with Islam before their finance men--and in China's case the need to employ their people--cause some sober reflection in the face of an unyielding Uncle Sam.

However, I'm only sanguine about the immedate crisis, the one with the end-of April tick-down.

4/19/2006 12:29:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If the Iranians back away, reference that exiled newspaper editor living in Europe.
It'll be a ruse, guarenteed, he says.
As Mr Hersh wrote, the Administration will not take Iran's word for it, and Inspectors will not be enough.
And that is just the Nuclear Issue.
Terrorism, Iraq, Hamas & Hezzbollah the Iranian proxies have to be addressed.
The Enemy is on the March,
because he has never been publicly identified, most do not even see the coming collision.

We are all in trains on a track. There is no switchman.

4/19/2006 12:31:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Let's just call it the Enough of Your Barbarian Ululating Bullshit War, and see what consequnces flow from there.

Regional war sooner than later would be to everyone's benefit. If the Democrats and Socialists would stop pushing so hard on the "We're Becoming Fascists!!!" theme there would be no danger to the Republic. The conditions for a Sulla are not there. The UN could useful as a cipher through which the target civilization - grandiose & ludicrous as it sounds - could be yanked up into UN-capable status.

Because the entire geographical zone in question is one gigantic wreck, so it's not as though there's some form of effective retreat. Time to start getting used to the "Long War," like it or not. The "Long War" began in August, 1914, anyway.

4/19/2006 12:33:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I don't think the Mohammedans are going to go for the "long war" option.

At least not in the short term.

Except in Iraq, where political settlement is a long way off.

4/19/2006 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger sammy small said...

re: 2164 post at 3:24

Hmmm...killing religious leaders, silent and deep.

Exactly how "los pepes" forced the Medellin drug cartel to collapse. Check out "Killing Pablo". It worked there, it will work elsewhere. The problem is the guts to do it and how to work around statutes that interfere.

4/19/2006 12:40:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat, 12:20 PM

Shortly after 9-11, Chris Matthews started having people on doing the "can't we all just get along" shuffle. I zipped off an e-mail to the effect that my father's generation, despite not having the benefit of expensive educations, did not have to have a nuclear attack to know they were at war.

Islam is at war with the West, and has been since the advent of Yasser Arafat and Co. We Boomers, it seems, are at war with nature. It will probably take a catastrophe of Biblical proportion to get our attention off our genitalia and hair long enough to seriously do something about Islam. To be sure, it may take the next generation to do what has to be done. That is a shame, because, then, it may be too late.

I mean, when supposedly serious folk spend precious time arguing the merits of using Israeli small arms ammunition or that of Taiwan against the bad guys, you have that surreal sense that you are witnessing doctors of divinity arguing about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. Then, when these same brain trusts are put in charge of operations in Baghdad, well, you get the point. And, no, it is never a good idea to have policy set by junior officers in the field, but I’ll any policy to blatant nonsense.

4/19/2006 12:43:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

y'know i bet everyone in gov't knows we have to get hit again bigtime in order to do what has to be done. imagine what the generals see, what the politicians know, and what the experts predict. i wonder if the hit's expected in USA, Europe, or some multi-continental coordinated jihad extravaganza.

4/19/2006 12:44:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

y'know i bet everyone in gov't knows we have to get hit again bigtime in order to do what has to be done. imagine what the generals see, what the politicians know, and what the experts predict. i wonder if the hit's expected in USA, Europe, or some multi-continental coordinated jihad extravaganza.

4/19/2006 12:44:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Ah - well, I don't think the Saracens actually know what they're doing. They're going to get a long war because of their obstinate nature. This post-Soviet holding pattern cannot continue, and it would be disappointing in the extreme for warfare between the competent powers to intervene in this the Great Intervention. When was the last time effective power radiated from Baghdad or the Arab Lands? 1250, or thereabouts? But the Mongol option is the last-last option. Let's pray they don't bring it on themselves.

4/19/2006 12:52:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...


"1914" and "Mongol"

Neither of these are often considered. Glad you brought them up.

4/19/2006 12:59:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

this site is inspirational--I think Ill do a bio, "Kafka, The Happy Years".

4/19/2006 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger bobalharb said...

The doctors of divinity never did argue about how many angels danced on the head of a pin. It's an old canard put out by rationalist enlightenment types to throw the hound off the scent. Really ticks me off too as I always enjoyed imagining angels dancing on a pin.

4/19/2006 01:22:00 PM  
Blogger bobalharb said...

DRat-12:31--and Death is the Engineer--didn't Churchill say something like that?

4/19/2006 01:27:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I thought I had conjured the train analogy from my own mind. Then again a line remembered in the subconscience is often self attributed.
The "with Death as the engineer" is good, I surely didn't think of that.
If Mr Churchill did, it's no wonder he understood the Mohammedan threat, and called it by name.

4/19/2006 01:36:00 PM  
Blogger bobalharb said...

Well, whoever thought of it, it wasn't me, and it's a really good image, one to keep in mind.

4/19/2006 01:46:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...



Let's keep those canards dry, OK. You work with what ya got.

I'm going to skip getting into any further examination of Medieval religious practices. Last time I mentioned the Inquisition and Galileo I thought I would have to do the auto de fe. Of course, that was Renaissance, wasn't it. Maybe I could get away with that. Nah.

4/19/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...


4/19/2006 08:13:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

buddy larsen,



4/20/2006 02:14:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

desert rat, re Golden Chain, I seem to remember that at least a couple of the Saudi names on the list met with untimely ends after the list fell into US hands

4/20/2006 06:22:00 AM  

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