Saturday, September 24, 2005

Bubbles For Peace

Belarussian girls blow bubbles in Minsk, Belarus September 21, 2005. Several dozen young people gathered in Belarus' capital to mark the International Day of Peace. REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko Wed Sep 21, 1:55 PM ET

Posted by Picasa

No Jews Allowed In Jordan

Andrew Bostom reports on laws in Jordan restricting Jews from obtaining citizenship, or from even entering the country (From Dhimmi Watch):

Only a non-Jew is entitled to Jordanian citizenship, as per Section 3(3) of the Jordanian Nationality Law, No. 6 of 1954 (Official Gazette, No. 1171 of February 16, 1954, p. 105). The subsection is numbered (2) in an amendment that appeared in the Official Gazette, No. 1675 of April 1, 1963, p. 270. No further amendment is known...since King Hussein declared his "abandonment" of the West Bank on August 7, 1988, nor since the 1994 peace treaty with Israel.

Further anti-Jewish discrimination appears in order No. 1282 of July 1, 1957 (attributed to the Jordan Official Gazette, No. 1282 by the Collection of Laws and Regulations [in Arabic], issued by the Jordanian Bar, Amman, Vol.1, 1957, p. 186). It exempts Syrian nationals from showing their passports on entering or leaving Jordan. They may use any identifying document, provided that 'they are not Jews'.

This comes a day after it was revealed that a recent poll shows that 100% of Jordanian citizens say that hate Jews. No wonder they have such laws.

The modern Muslim world resembles Nazi Germany in many ways. I'm glad they haven't begun rounding Jews up and killing them, but on the other hand, quite a few Arab countries have contributed directly to the Palestinian Intifada against Israel. So, they do try to kill Jews.

Maybe it's more accurate to say they just aren't as good at it. But, of course, if they had nuclear weapons it wouldn't be that difficult. This is why we can not allow Iran to get nukes.

Bomb Belt Barbie

The other day No Pasaran noted that there is a Muslim Barbie doll which comes complete with a prayer rug, in a post where they also made the prescient joke that about the bomb belt being sold separately.

Well, today Supernatural Blog brings us the news that Bomb Belt Barbie is already here just waiting to blow off the shelves.

Posted by Picasa

Just pull the cord and she ... well, uh she doesn't talk, exactly. Do you think Barbie will get 72 Kens when she gets to paradise to live out her wildest fantasies? If so, she'll never blow, I guess.

What's that? Oh no, you thought I ...? No, I meant she'll never blow herself up, because Ken is such a ...

Oh well, nevermind.

Posted by Picasa

Hitler: On War With America

"I understand only too well that a world-wide distance separates Roosevelt's ideas and my ideas. Roosevelt comes from a rich family and belongs to the class whose path is smoothed in the democracies. I was the only child of a small, poor family and had to fight my way by work and industry. When the Great War came Roosevelt occupied a position where he got to know only its pleasant consequences, enjoyed by those who do business while others bleed ...

As for the German nation, it needs charity neither from Mr. Roosevelt nor from Mr. Churchill ... It wants only its rights! It will secure for itself this right to live even if thousands of Churchills and Roosevelts conspire against it."

--- Hitler,
December 11, 1941

"I don't see much future for the American. It's a decayed country. And they have their racial problem, and the problem of social inequalities ... My feelings against Americanism are feelings of hatred and deep repugnance ... Everything about the behavior of American society reveals that it's half Judaized, and the other half Nefrified. How can one expect a State like that to hold together - a country where everything is built on the dollar."

--- Hitler
January 1942

Reading the above rhetoric one is struck by it's similarity to the vitriol hurled at America these days by the likes of Bin Laden, and the Left.

Bin Laden has also called the United States a decadent and Judaized nation. Bin Laden also claims he attacks America in order to secure the rights of Muslims. However, like Hitler - whose idea of his rights was to have the Third Reich stretch across Europe - Bin Laden's idea of Muslim rights is for the Caliphate to stretch all the way to Andalusia (Spain).

And, it almost goes without saying that the rest of Hitler's critique of America sounds almost exactly like that of the Left. American democracy is a sham which makes it easy for rich people like Roosevelt to enter the halls of power. We have racial problems and inequalities. Everything is built on the dollar.

These criticisms have been ringing around the world as long as America has been here. They are the rantings of disatistfied people who lust for power rather than liberty. And let's be clear, when these "freedom fighters" claims to want "equality," they do not seek equality of opportunity, but instead call for equality of result. In other words, they want to create the results which is not in anyway different from a desire to control the entirety of the state.

Our enemy is the same menace wearing a different face. It is the pride of man, wanting to take away the choice of another to satisfy his lust for power, and ultimately destruction.

Groundhog Day At The UN

Haven't we been reading this same freaking headline, and story, for over a year now? (From Reuters):

UN condemns Iran amid nuclear bomb fears

VIENNA (Reuters) - The U.N. nuclear watchdog passed a resolution on Saturday requiring that Iran be reported to the Security Council for failing to convince the international community that its nuclear program was entirely peaceful.

The International Atomic Energy Agency's (IAEA) governing board approved the resolution despite threats by Iran to begin enriching uranium and curtail IAEA inspections.

The resolution was drafted by Britain, France and Germany and backed by the United States, but it was watered down by the EU trio who had wanted Iran to be referred to the Council now.

With 22 votes for, one against and 12 abstentions, the outcome also highlighted the split between Western nations and others such as Russia, China and South Africa, which disagree with the EU three and Washington on how to deal with Iran.

Iran denies it is seeking atomic bombs and says its nuclear program is only for generating electricity. But it concealed its atomic fuel program from the IAEA for 18 years.

The resolution requires that Tehran be reported to the Security Council at an unspecified date, meaning Iran would probably not be referred until the IAEA board meets in November at the earliest, diplomats say.

Oop, there goes Grandma Europa, about to slip in a pile of dog crap again. I better help her across the street.

And wait, who is that distinguished looking African, with his hand out, taking money while those children are being raped? Why, isn't it? It is, it's Kofi Annan. Why don't I go suggest to him that there might be a better way he could serve the world?

And what is that racket? That endless prattle? Why it's all the Socialitst (read Communists) of the world, united in their hatred of the United States and Israel. Maybe I could teach them that Kumbaya doesn't mean "hate the Jews."

Yes, if only international politics were as nice as a Hollywood movie.

Friday, September 23, 2005

On Military Victory and Political Compromise

The Isreali concession of giving Gaza to the Palestinians is certainly a step towards full statehood for Palestine. The preponderance of world opinion seems to hope that once the Palestinians achieve statehood that political compromise and peace can be reached. Once they are a nation state they will have what they claim they want. They will have land, they will have independence. They will be accepted as a soveriegn nation. Then perhaps they will be allowed to succeed or fall on their own terms. Obtaining Gaza is one step in this direction.

Once Palestinians are given a state of their own, will they turn inward and seek to build a productive and viable society or will they continue to look outward and seek the destruction of Isreal? Unfortunately I fear I know the answer.

Careful observors of Palestinian rhetoric, commitments, and actions over the years know that statehood will not be a conclusion of the political or violent conflict, but a beginning of a new stage of agression against Isreal. Isreal knows this as well, but they must do something to alter the status quo. Isreal has decided to let the Palestinians have their land in Gaza and then seek to seal the border and wait for the inevitable Palestinian renewal of attacks. Will the continually aggressive posture by the Palestinians, no matter what concessions Isreal makes, even after limited statehood, cause world opinion to turn against Palestine? I wouldn't count on it...but we can hope for the best. Unfortunately, it is likely just a matter of time before Isreal will be called upon to defend its very existence yet again, and at that point, Isreal will likely defeat any agression by any state of Palestine (likely with an unduly high cost to its very professional military).

If or when Isreal does defeat the duly organized state of Palestine will the Palestinians then be willing to accept political compromise? Will the world then accept Isreal's right to impose a "just peace" upon the state of Palestine? Or will the larger world finally step in and support efforts to outlaw and eliminate, by force, the radical ideologies and organizations of Hamas? Who knows how a potential war between two nation states would play out. No one knows if such a conflict would alter the preponderance of world opinion regarding this longstanding conflict.
Unfortunately History only gives us a limited glimpse of the potential results. However, one lesson of history is that...

Often there can be no political compromise without decisive military victory.

Unfortunately human nature is fallen and fixed. Often, human, aggression will not end until some nations are brought to a place of humilty and utter dispair. Some people, some nations, will simply not accept compromise until their very survival as a people is in doubt. This crucial breaking of national will unfortunately only comes after large scale devastation, destruction, and massive loss of civilian and military lives. But in this fallen world too often such is the only path to a just peace.

German Fascists would not accept political compromise, or a just peace, until their country was devastated by fire bombings, war, civilian deaths, and ultimately occupation. Japanese imperialism would not yeild until put under the threat of total nuclear annihilation. Southern slaveholding secessionists in America would not accept a just peace until Atlanta lay in ashes and their people were left destitute and in fear for their lives.

Perhaps the unique geo-ethnic-religious dimensions of the Isreali-Palestinian conflict make it deeper and more complex than the above examples and thus not a good model for comparison. Perhaps the defeat of a duly formed Palestinian state will not provide the path to a just peace. Perhaps world opinion will never accept an Isreali-Palestinian war as a battle of equals, thus Isreal will never be vindicated through such a confrontation. How deep does the world's well of ambivilance and hatred of Isreal run? We may never know.

Furthermore, one might argue that Isreal has already achieved military victory on several occasions, but such victories have not achieved any lasting peace with the Palestinians. This is true, but through such decisive defensive strength they have achieved limited detente with the other nation states they did engage, such as Egypt and Jordan. Conversely, Palestinians have never had their national will embodied in the form of a nation state that is recognized by the international community. As a result any conflicts with Isreal have been seen as drastically asymmetrical. The morally reprehensable attacks on Isreali civilians have never been seen by the world as acts of war by a nation state, but merely desparate lunges by a desparate people. By hiding in the shadows of Palestine's nebulous political existance, Hamas and others have been able to refine and spread their the cancerous ideology without accountability. They have never been required to live up to accepted standards of international behavior and their culture of death has been allowed to spread unabated. The World's condescending paternalism that does not expect better of Palestinians is simultaneously demeaning to Palestinians, enables Palestinian terror and is destructive to Isreal's ability to defend itself. In the end, Hamas and the like have never had occassion to be faced directly "mano y mano" and thus ultimately to be brought fully to their knees. Isreal has never had a nation-state of Palestine to confront and subdue...for better or worse, now at least in Gaza, the Palestenians are forming something of the sort.

Do not misunderstand me. I wish and ache for peace in that region. I hope and pray that some semblance of order can be imposed in the new Palestinian territories and that reasonable leadership will somehow rise amongst the Palestinian people. I know there are good decent moderate Palestinians. But I also know decent Palestinians are weak, powerless, and in fear of the ruthless violence and dark hatred of those with power like Hamas. Somehow those hateful ideologies must be cut out of Palestinian culture like a cancer, but that is not easily done. I do not wish a war between Isreal and Palestine, I do not wish to see more bloodshed. I wish Hamas and the like would lay down their arms and abandon their desire to drive the "Jews" into the sea. But while I hope for the best, I also realize that we must ultimately learn at the feet of History, and through most of human history such deep seeded conflicts are only resolved when one nation is ultimately subdued and humbled by the sword. I wish things worked differently, I wish human nature were not so corruptable, but alas it is...

Will a true, military victory by one nation state over another finally open the door for a political solution? It has before, but as we all know this conflict is like no other and speculation about any future solutions is likely to be errant and firm conclusions elusive. But in the end we must seek to understand our world and we must hope that progress will be made, hopefully without more bloodshed and misery...unfortunately while History is our teacher, she is brutally honest, and she can often be a very stern schoolmaster...

Poll Says 100% of Jordanians Hate Jews

From The Washington Times, via Jihad Watch:

According to a July poll by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press on global attitudes toward religious groups, 100 percent of Jordanian respondents said they either had a "very unfavorable" or "somewhat unfavorable" view of Jews.

You might remember, a couple months back a similar poll was conducted in Lebanon which revealed the exact same thing. Anti-Semitism is monolithic in the Muslim world. Why? Because the Koran teaches it.

The Progress of Democracy In China Is Pragmatic

From the Asia Times, via Fjordman:

HONG KONG - Over the past 16 years, the Chinese leadership has tried its best to dodge democratic reform while looking for alternative measures to stamp out rampant corruption and increase government efficiency. However, it seems to have recently come to the conclusion that there is just no way other than democratic reform.

Chinese President Hu Jintao has indicated that China will institute a program of democratic reforms, and Premier Wen Jiabao has given more detail, pledging to introduce direct elections at the township level "within a couple of years".

Hu and Wen chose to make their announcements during international events shorthly before Hu's trip last week to the United Nations summit meeting in New York. This could be a sign that both are eager to project a reformist image to the international community as part of efforts to defuse the theory of a "China threat" from what is still officially a communist government.

"China will press for democratic progress, unswervingly reestablish democracy, including direct elections," the premier, who favors mild reform, told a news conference prior to the 8th EU-China summit on September 5.

"If we Chinese people can manage a village, I believe they can manage a town in several years. This system [of direct voting] will be realized step by step."

Visiting British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who sat next to Wen, was reportedly "shocked" when he heard the premier's remarks. Blair shouldn't be surprised. What Wen is talking about is only a mild democratic reform package.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

My Midlife Crisis

You've gotta be empty to accept God, but one thing I've learned recently is, if you don't empty yourself, the world will do it for you.

You wake up one day and you find the only thing worth living for is to give something to someone who is in need. All else is so empty, it is a pain unto death.

Agnus Dei

Lamb of God, Who Takes Away the Sins of the World
Have Mercy On Us

For the Lord God Almighty Reigns

Holy, Holy, Holy
Are you Lord God Almighty
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb
You are Holy

Posted by Picasa

Why Iraq?
Whither Saudi Arabia and Iran?

To everything there is a season, so I guess this tis the season of Belmont Club:

After Operation Enduring Freedom drove the Taliban from Afghanistan some analysts asked why America chose Iraq, and not Saudi Arabia or Syria, for a regime takedown. For example, Jeffrey Sachs wrote in August, 2003:

Within hours of the attack, the White House apparently understood that senior Saudi intelligence officials were probably involved and that 15 out of the 19 terrorists were from Saudi Arabia. They were no doubt stunned to realise that parts of the vast Saudi royal family were not only corrupt, but also deeply intertwined with anti-American terror and extremist fundamentalism. ... a substitute had to be found for the US military bases in Saudi Arabia. Like Saudi oil, the bases too were now under threat, especially because the US presence in the Saudi kingdom was known to be the principal irritant for al-Qaeda. ... the Bush White House needed to issue a powerful threat to the Saudi leadership: one more false step and you're finished. Attacking the next-door neighbour was no doubt judged to be quite persuasive.

But perhaps the strategic rationale for choosing Iraq versus Saudi Arabia consisted in that Iraq lay along a major fault line in the Muslim world, not simply with respect to religion, but in the case of the Kurds, ethnicity as well. It was the one place where America was guaranteed to find local allies whichever way it turned; it was the last place where the population could easily put aside their differences to oppose the United States. And if the objective were to set the region on its ears, here was the pillar in temple of Dagon around which everything could be sent crashing down.

Palestinian Postage Stamp
In Tribute To Jacques Chirac

Posted by Picasa

Hamas To Convert Synagogue Into Weapons Museum

From the New York Sun:

WASHINGTON - Emboldened by Israel's withdrawal from Gaza and part of the West Bank, Hamas yesterday announced its plan to turn a synagogue in Netzarim into a museum that would display weapons employed by the terrorist group's members against Israeli civilians.

Charles at Little Green Footballs comments:

Where the hell is the world’s outrage about this? Newsweek prints a false rumor that a Koran was dunked in a toilet, and the entire planet goes nuts. Hamas announces that they’re going to turn a Jewish house of worship into a memorial to mass murder ... and the silence is absolutely deafening.

Yes, where? This is one more thing the world ought to be outraged about, and yet they continue to blame the Jews for the Middle East conflict.

Hamas are literally Nazis.

Click here if that seems like an extreme comment. Because it is not in the least extreme.

(Sigh. Deep breath.)



What The Hell Is Up With Germany?

Germany had an election the other day and no one seems to have won. Jim Rose explains:

The German parliament is called the Bundestag. It currently has 617+ seats (this often flucuates for reasons that will be covered later), thus a political party or a coalition of parties need to have a little more than 300 seats in order to rule.

The Chancellor is chosen by a majority vote of the Bundestag, much the way our House of Representatives elects a Speaker, thus if one party doesn't win more than 300 seats, political deals become vital. So, here's what happened in this weekend's election:

Christian Democrats (Merkel): 225 seats
Socialist Democrats (Schroeder): 222 seats
Free Democrats (Free-Market Capitalists): 61
Green Party (Environmental Wackos): 55 seats
Left Party (Commies and extreme nutjobs): 54 seats

So as you can see, no one party got over 300 seats, so a coalition must be formed.

The Christian Democrats and the Free Democrats get along and would gladly form one, but that's only 286. The Socialist Democrats and the Greens like each other, but together they only make 277, and all four parties agree on one thing: they'd rather die than work in a coalition with the Left Party.

Ah, ok. So, aren't you glad you live in a country that has a two-party system? One of the benefits of the two-party system is that compromises have to be worked out BEFORE the elections. The party which would want to rule has to state who they are BEFORE they are elected.

Isn't that a keen idea?

Over there in Germany, they elect a party, and then after-the-fact, the Party defines itself through a series of negotiated compromises with people you may or may not agree with. The ruling party has no autonomy. And, in a multi-party system, the ruling party rarely has a mandate, which of course, many times leads to gridlock

The problem with multi-Party Parliamentary systems is that too many wackos get into positions of power. For instance, in one district of Germany, the neo-Nazi Party has won several seats. In fact (little remembered fact here) that's how Hitler gained power in the first place. He didn't win a a majority in a two-party system. He rose to Chancellor of Germany after winning just 35% of the vote in German elections.

In other words, he did not have the support of anywhere near half of the German people. You can understand why that is dangerous. Ten percent of Americans believe Elvis is alive. I'm guessing if you ran on the Elvis ticket, and threw in free pizza and a strong anti-illegal immigration rhetoric, you would be able to clear 35% of the vote in America, no matter who you were, or what the rest of your platform stated.

Now, I'm being absurd, but I think you get the idea.

Anyway, back to present day Germany and the pile of dog crap they slipped in. With the "results" of the election being what they are, Merkel's Party will have to form what is ironically known as a "Grand Coalition" with Schroeder's Party. Oh boy. That would be like George Bush having to share the White House with John Kerry.

And the problem is, both Schroeder and Merkel say they ought to be Chancellor. Them's some big huge shrivelled up testicles on that guy Schroeder to think he ought to have the Chancellorship when he didn't win a majority. But, hey, in Germany, his claim actually makes sense.

Check this crap out (from GeoBandy):

In an eerie echo of performances by recent Democrat presidential election losers Al Gore and John Kerry, leftist German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, whose Social Democrats were defeated in Germany’s national elections last week, is insisting that he actually won and should still be the chancellor.

BERLIN - A belligerent performance by Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder in a TV talk show after German elections, which his party narrowly lost, has drawn widespread criticism and fuelled alarm the country could be lurching into a political crisis.

Like most European nations, Germany has a parliamentary system in which the Chancellor, the equivalent of a Prime Minister, is chosen from the party with a parliamentary majority. When, as is the case in the German election, no single party wins a majority, a coalition government is formed by agreement among parties with enough members to total a majority.

Schroeder, however, is demanding that votes be counted differently than they have always been counted and insisting that, once recounted as he demands, his party will have won the election. (Sound familiar?) Schroeder’s performance on German television was, to put it mildly, surreal:

A grinning Schroeder first accused the TV moderators of having "an intellectual problem" and not being objective in their reporting and questioning.

Turning to a grim-looking Merkel he said: "Do you seriously think my party will accept this offer for talks with Frau Merkel? ... Under her leadership she will never get a coalition with my party."

What the hell does the dumb "Frau" think, she's supposed to be in power?

Islamic Jihadis Leaving Iraq
Going to France

More evidence that we seem to be coming closer to winning the war in Iraq comes from an unlikely source; a French judge who seems to have it in for America:

PARIS - Islamic extremists are returning to France from Iraq's battlegrounds with the skills and desire to carry out attacks in Europe, a top anti-terror judge said Thursday — warning that Europe needs a better-coordinated effort to face the threat.

The Iraq war is changing the face of militancy in France, investigating judge Jean-Francois Ricard said in an interview with The Associated Press. As with some of the suspects in the London bombings, some French Islamic radicals with violent intentions are unknown to authorities, he said.

Islamic militants from France have long participated in armed struggles and received battle training around the globe, in places such as Chechnya, Bosnia, Afghanistan and Iraq, Ricard said. But only rarely have such militants sought to bring violence back with them, he said.

"I have confirmation ... of this return (from Iraq) with action targeting our countries. We've been starting to see it this year" and in 2004, Ricard said. "It's very worrying."

"The return of some individuals is starting: They're taking round trips. You can't think that once in Iraq, there's no return," he said. "It is not true."

He declined to say how many French citizens could be involved, but said authorities must keep close watch over any potential suspects and their collaborators.

They wouldn't be returning to France if they weren't giving up in Iraq.

Belmont Club Is Uproariously Funny

Wretchard, not a guy I would usually associate with mirth, actually had me laughing out loud this morning. First he has an analysis of the Battle of Tal-Afar as told by Time Magazine. Wretchard notes that, while the Time article contains many negative phrases about the war in Iraq ("elusive and inexhaustible enemy""success" is "elusive""inexhaustible enemy emboldened by the US presence""gradual . . . erosion" in public support), it is almost singularly lacking in specifics.

Wretchard concludes that if a future historian were to rely on this article to tell the story of the Battle of Tal-Afar, he would believe America lost, and would, thus, write something like this:

Two groups of men fought in a place called Tal-Afar about 3,532 years ago. One group of men, called 'insurgents', soundly defeated another group called Americans, and their allies the Kurds, but for reasons unclear in the manuscript fragments, the insurgents evacuated the battlefield although they could hardly be pressed by the Americans, who were apparently a people who frequently cursed, yelled and ran from place to place in fear.


Rushdie To Muslims
"Speak Up Now"

Salman Rushdie calls on Muslims not to allow their religion to be hijacked by extremists:

LONDON: Novelist Salman Rushdie has urged the "silent majority" of Muslims to speak up to prevent their culture being hijacked by extremists.

"If it goes on being silent, then its culture and religion will be hijacked by the extremists and it will be very difficult to go on saying 'that's not us.' ... You've got to speak up,"' Rushdie said in an interview with the BBC World Service.

Rushdie said he believed the majority would speak out.

"Maybe it takes something as horrifying as the bombings in London to make people break ranks," Rushdie said, referring to the July 7 attacks in which four suicide bombers killed 52 subway and bus passengers in London.

"But I think there's a lot of evidence that there's a great deal of soul-searching and rethinking going on," he said.

I hope he's right. Thus far, all I see changing after the London bombings is a lot more Westerners are angry. Muslims don't seem to have changed their attitude a whole lot that I can see.

Why Insane People Should Not Have Nukes
Iran Parades Missiles
Warns "Death To America"
"Israel Must Be Wiped Off The Face of the Earth"

From Agence French Presse:

TEHRAN (AFP) - Under pressure over its nuclear programme, Iran flaunted its ballistic missiles and warned any nation considering attacking the Islamic republic would face a "destructive and fiery" response.

And, if you think that's bad, get a load of this:

On show at an annual military parade on Thursday were thousands of troops and a range of hardware including six of Iran's Shahab-3 ballistic missiles -- which sported banners saying "Death to America", "We will crush America under our feet" and " Israel must be wiped off the face of the earth".

They're just screaming, "Please come and kill me," aren't they?

Europe Died In Auschwitz

An article from Spanish journalist, Sebastian Villar Rodriguez. From Front Page Magazine:

I was walking along Raval (Barcelona) when all of a sudden I understood that Europe died with Auschwitz.

We assassinated 6 million Jews in order to end up bringing in 20 million Muslims! We burnt in Auschwitz the culture, intelligence and power to create.

We burnt the people of the world, the one who is proclaimed the chosen people of God. Because it is the people who gave to humanity the symbolic figures who were capable of changing history (Christ, Marx, Einstein, Freud...) and who is the origin of progress and wellbeing.

We must admit that Europe, by relaxing its borders and giving in under the pretext of tolerance to the values of a fallacious cultural relativism, opened it's doors to 20 million Muslims, often illiterates and fanatics that we could meet, at best, in places such as Raval, the poorest of the nations and of the ghettos, and who are preparing the worst, such as the 9/11 and the Madrid bombing and who are lodged in apartment blocs provided by the social welfare.

We also have exchanged culture with fanaticism, the capacity to create with the will to destroy, the wisdom with the superstition.

We have exchanged the transcendental instinct of the Jews, who even under the worst possible conditions have always looked for a better peaceful world, for the suicide bomber. We have exchanged the pride of life for the fanatic obsession of death. Our death and that of ourchildren.

What a grave mistake that we made!!!

When I visited France a few years ago, the impression I was left with was a country which had stopped in time. There was a funereal silence over the city of Paris, an air of oppession, not of government, but of spirit. People talked in hush tones, as if afraid to wake the dead.

It was the oddest sensation. My wife noticed it too. Our comments to friends were, of course, met with incredulity, because it is common to be charmed by Paris, to find it "romantic." But, I am quite sure that we were right. Why else would one hear songs from the fifties played everywhere throughout the city? They are still stuck in their Maurice Chevallier/Charles DeGaulle heyday, because that's when they died.

Europe did die as the result of Auschwitz. I believe that. Auschwitz dealt Europe a death blow, and it took about twenty years for the spirit to be extinguished. The soul of Europe is dead, but the people live on. And there is thriving culture there, but it has little to do with Europe. It is the culture of their immigrants, and that which they import from America.

Europe can use these things to build on, but they can not go back to what they were.

Ted Turner Proclaims Himself
The Center of the Moral Universe

Yesterday, as I was driving across the Arizona desert, I was listening to the Dennis Prager show on the radio and he was playing excerpts from a Wolf Blitzer interview with Ted Turner. The interview was so bizarre you have to wonder if Turner has entered the dementia stage of some undisclosed illness, or something.

The subject was North Korea. Turner said, he doesn't think Kim Jong Il is a bad a guy as everybody makes him out to be. He said, people said similar things about the Soviets, but he looked them in the eye and he knew they were good people.

Wolf Blitzer countered with something like, "Well, North Korea is one of the worst states in the world. Kim Jong Il is an evil man."

Turner replied that he couldn't be sure Kim Jong Il was evil because he hadn't met him. Although, he had seen pictures of him, and he looked just fine by Ted Turner's standards.

So, in other words, Ted Turner is able to make moral judgements about people based upon the way they look at him, which the rest of us are not able to make based upon the facts. Until Ted Turner actually gets to meet Kim Jong Il face to face, all the rest of us are just going to have to wait to find out whether or not he is really a bad guy or not.

I guess we can rest easier that Turner has seen photographs of the Il one, and he looks to be ok. But, you know, I think we had better get Turner on a plane over to NoKo pretty soon here, because as you can see from the post below, Kim Jong Il might be ready to pop.

If anyone finds the video of this bizarre interview, please let me know. I'd love to put up a link.

Why Insane People
Should Not Have Nuclear Weapons

Two days ago, North Korea agreed to relinquish it's nuclear program. Now, they claim the U.S. is plotting a nuclear attack on their country, so now they are sitting at the negotiating table and threatening America:

In a second day of bluster after its disarmament accord, North Korea accused the United States on Wednesday of planning a nuclear attack and warned it could retaliate.

North Korea "is fully ready to decisively control a pre-emptive nuclear attack with a strong retaliatory blow," the communist nation's Rodong Sinmun newspaper said in an English-language commentary carried by the state Korean Central News Agency.

At six-nation talks in Beijing on Monday, North Korea promised to give up its nuclear weapons program in return for economic aid and security assurances.

Since then, however, the North's rhetoric has underscored its unpredictability and cast doubt on its commitment to the accord hammered out with China, Japan, Russia, South Korea and the United States after four rounds of contentious negotiations stretching over two years.

Despite the tough statements, none of the North's negotiating partners said they expected a breakdown in the disarmament talks, which are scheduled to resume in November when the parties meet in the Chinese capital to begin the hard work of implementing the agreement.

North Korea makes the Mullahs of Iran look sane, by comparison. But their odd rantings about the Jews and the Great Satan tells us all we need to know about their mental health. We can not allow such people to have nuclear weapons.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Eyes Wide Open
Romney Says Wiretap Mosques
Islamists Get Very, Very Angry
Romney Says, "So What?"

From LGF:

BOSTON — A coalition of Muslim and civil libertarian organizations Friday demanded that Gov. Mitt Romney apologize for his comments last week, when he suggested that some mosques should be wiretapped.

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee of Massachusetts delivered a letter, which was co-signed by 21 other organizations, saying that Romney’s comments characterized Muslims living in the U.S. as potential or actual terrorists. “Governor Romney, the safety of Massachusetts is built upon the trust all residents — citizens and immigrants — have in their government,” the letter stated. “Your willingness to profile and scapegoat an entire community based on religious affiliation only serves to erode trust and increase fear.”

Romney said in a Wednesday speech to the conservative Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C., that U.S. counterterrorism efforts need to be focused on tracking Muslims that come into the U.S.

“How many individuals are coming to our state and going to those institutions who’ve come from terrorist-sponsored states? Do we know where they are? Are we tracking them?” the governor said, according to a transcript provided by his press aides.

He continued, “How about people in settings, mosques for instance, that may be teaching doctrines of hate and terror? Are we monitoring that? Are we wiretapping? Are we following what’s going on? Are we seeing who’s coming in? Are we seeing who’s coming out? Are we eavesdropping, carrying out surveillance on those individuals from places that sponsor domestic terror?”

While the Anti-Arab Discrimination Committee said Romney’s remarks were “dangerous” and asked him to retract them, Romney told reporters that he stood by his comments.

“When it comes to protecting our citizens, there is no place for political correctness,” Romney said at an unrelated press conference.

“We should be doing more in terms of intelligence and counterterrorism in the state to protect ourselves from terrorists. We spend a lot of our resources thinking about response, but response can’t protect us. We have to be able to prevent attacks.”

Romney said that if U.S. intelligence officials have information that a person is “preaching messages of hate and terror,” then there should be sufficient grounds to conduct surveillance on them in their places of worship.

“Surely, we have to recognize that some of this has gone on in mosques in the past,” Romney said. “Most mosques are teaching doctrines of love and consideration, but there have been places of extremism where certain teachers have been identified as having been involved in or led to terrorist attacks. Let’s not pretend that’s not the case.”

Camelback Mountain

I've been in Phoenix on business the past few days. I did alot of driving around. Man, is Arizona ever a beautiful state. The immensity of the landscape is breaktaking, and the surreality of the rock formations is sometimes unnerving.

One can't help think about the first pioneers of early America riding across these lands in wagons. They must have thought the land both blessed and haunted.

Anyway, every once in a while I have to trot out my liberal roots for show, so today I've got to comment on something that's going on out in Phoenix, which is just a travesty in my opinion. Many conservatives might disagree with me here, so I'll try to make my case well.


Here's the thing; good ole' Donald Trump (in many ways a man to be admired) wants to build a 14-story hotel on Camelback Road, right smack in front of Camelback Mountain. That sounds like a great idea. It will bring revenue into the city, give people jobs, and help tourism. Great.

The problem is the hotel he wants to build is 100 feet taller than existing regulations allow. The city council is considering it, and apparently the issue will be decided in the next few days.

The answer ought to be, "Mr. Trump, your hotel idea is fired."

Here's why: Camelback Mountain is beautiful. It is a tourist attraction in itself.

Camelback Road is the Rodeo Drive of the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. There is already ample shopping, dining, and hotels along Camelback Drive. The restriction on the height of buildings is there so that the view of the mountain is not obscured, thus destroying the tourism value of the area. In other words, by building this tall structure Trump wants to milk the golden goose and kill it at the same time.

Now, that's kind of an extreme statement, right? It's only one 14-story hotel, after all.

But, the truth is, it's always just one hotel, and then another, and then another. No, no, no, no, no.

You know what this reminds me of? A few years ago I was meeting with a wealthy man in Napa Valley. He was a developer. During the course of the meeting he complained to me about how the city of Napa was anti-business. I asked him what he meant. He said they have too many restrictions on land use. Land can not be broken down into areas of less than 10 acres. So, how is one to start a variety of businesses in Napa?

Well, the thing is, Napa is Napa because of it's restrictions. It is wine country, with beautiful vineyards, and it sports a wine industry which is the talk of the world. It's wineries bring big tourism. People flock to Napa by the tens of thousands to go wine-tasting for the weekend.

Understand, Napa is just a little sleepy town. Napa is no Phoenix-Scottsdale. It is not a huge swath of land. So, the tourism is disproportionate to the area already.

The point is this developer and Donald Trump are doing what developers do. They look at a piece of land and envision what value it has, and what they can do with it. But, the problem is, the value of the land is based upon what the land is before the developer does his magic.

Land development is like interior decorating. Sometimes developers, or decorators do a wonderful job and sometimes they ruin the place. Anytime a developer or decorator comes in and wants to make structural changes to an already picture-perfect living space, you know they are motivated more by ego, than by an instinct to improve.

Say no Phoenix.

Posted by Picasa

How Do You Spot An Anti-Semite?

The following story is a test. Those who maintain we should believe this, are anti-Semites.

NABLUS, West Bank (Reuters) - Hamas could one day amend a charter calling for the destruction of Israel and hold negotiations with the Jewish state, a political leader of the Islamic militant group in the West Bank said.

“The charter is not the Koran,” Mohammed Ghazal told Reuters in an interview in Nablus on Tuesday.

“Historically, we believe all Palestine belongs to Palestinians, but we’re talking now about reality, about political solutions ... The realities are different.”

So, as time goes on and Hamas makes more and more overtures in this direction, you will know that those who work with Hamas towards their new "reality, are the equivalent of Nazi collaborators.

Oh, and if you think my saying they are the equivalent of Nazi collaborators is extreme, then here is an excerpt from the Hamas Charter:

"Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it."

"After Palestine, the Zionists aspire to expand from the Nile to the Euphrates. When they will have digested the region they overtook, they will aspire to further expansion, and so on. Their plan is embodied in the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion", and their present conduct is the best proof of what we are saying."

The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said:

"The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, (evidently a certain kind of tree) would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews." (related by al-Bukhari and Moslem).

You see, there really is no doubt; that which animates Hamas is the same thing that animated Hitler. So, it is not at all unfair to say that anyone who works with Hamas for "peace" is the equivalent of a Nazi collaborator.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

The Secret War:
Evidence We Are Winning In Iraq

From an interview with Colonel Robert Brown, Commander of The 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, Multinational Force-Northwest, via Belmont Club:

Q How is the state of the insurgency different today than when you arrived to start your mission?

COL. BROWN: There's a significant difference from when we got here last October. Last October, we faced a foreign fighter that was very well-trained. I remember watching attacks out -- we had an attack that involved about 60 foreign fighters in a pretty complex ambush. By complex I mean three or four forms of engagement. They'll hit you with an IED, small arms, mortars -- a very complex attack. We saw that regularly in November and December. We also defeated -- in one of those fights, we killed 40 terrorists, and we did not lose anybody, and we defeated them every time they tried to do that against us. We really worked hard and aggressively at getting out. I mean, we conducted some 2,100 cordon and searches, and thousands of aggressive offensive operations -- 18 attacks a day against the insurgents back in that time period. I remember watching an attack and seeing the insurgents move against us, and I had to look and say, gee, are those our guys or their guys because they're moving very well around buildings. Now, that was November and December. What we saw is that that's faded away very quickly, as we captured and killed. And we killed some 550 enemy and captured over 3,000.

And as we got to February and March, we saw a completely different foreign fighter. We've captured Libyans. We've captured Saudi, Yemenis, Algerians. And many of these -- one Libyan that we captured about a month and a half ago -- he was clearly brainwashed. And he was told that, you know, what was going on here and brainwashed to come and be a -- what he thought was -- he was going to be a foreign fighter against this crusade against the Muslim religion. He got here. He saw that was not correct. They told he was going to be a suicide martyr. He said he didn't want to do that. When we happened to capture him, several other foreign fighters and the cell leader that was orchestrating them, he was very happy to talk to us about what he had seen and what they had done.

And very interesting that younger foreign fighter that we're seeing now -- very poorly trained. We would call them more like RPGs for hire. And we believe it's the -- we know that the leadership is severely disrupted. Again, from -- about 25 percent of the attacks were very complex prior to elections, as I described. Now we're down to five percent are complex. And we're at the lowest number of attacks by far over the last three months. And that is -- clearly the foreign network is disrupted. The leadership is severely disrupted. We captured Abu Talha, the number-two al Qaeda leader in the north of Iraq. And right after that we got Abu Bara, Madhi Musa (sp), Abu Zab (sp), the next six leaders that would step up and take over. Nobody's taken over now. It's not a very popular position because if they step up, they get captured or killed. And so they're really disrupted, totally different.

The other thing -- the other huge change is the population. And in a counterinsurgency, of course, the terrorists don't have to -- the people don't have to love them; they just have to remain neutral and not turn them in. And when we got here, the people were intimidated, and they were neutral. Now they are turning them in. We'd like to call it, you know, the terrorists swim in a sea of anonymity, and that sea has been taken away from them.

And for example, when we got here, they could fire mortars, and they did that. Three hundred mortar attacks a month was the average for the six months prior to us getting here. As we got the population more and more on the side of their government and their security forces, as they saw how the terrorists offered no hope for the future and their government did, they started turning these guys in. And in the beginning, a guy would fire a mortar; in a city of 2 million, it's pretty hard to track him down. Well, we've captured over 142 mortar systems, and now the average is six attacks a month in the entire province, from 300 to six.

And just a couple of weeks ago, when they did fire a mortar, the people told what they looked like, what their license plate was. In one case, they knew one of the individuals. The Iraqi army went out, tracked them right down, arrested them, and there you have it -- much different from that prior to elections, when, you know, they wouldn't say anything. It was -- we didn't see anything, and it was very hard to stop this.


UN Says Palestinians Better Off Economically
Than Other Arab States

Melanie Phillips analyzes the UN Development Prgrams Annual Report:

On the global political stage the UN is Israel’s implacable foe, helping create the impression that the country is grinding the Palestinians into abject poverty and destitution – that is, when it not committing genocide against them. Leaving aside the inconvenient detail that genocide wipes out whole populations while the numbers of Palestinians have actually been increasing, official data published this month by the UN gives the lie to its own propaganda about the lack of Palestinian well-being. The UN Development Programme’s Human Development Report 2005 is a massive tome. But chapter five which deals with violent conflict makes it clear that it was the second intifada beginning in Sept. 2000 which reversed a small trend towards improvement on the Human Development Index and resulted ‘in a sharp deterioration in living standards and life chances,’ more than doubling the poverty rate. Israel is commonly blamed for this deterioration. But as the report observes: ‘...violent conflict is one of the surest and fastest routes to the bottom of the HDI table’. And that conflict was started and promulgated by the Palestinians.

What is even more revealing is that in tables on p 220, the Occupied Palestinian Territories are in the medium cluster with an HDI of 0.729 – a better standard of living than the Arab states overall which have an HDI of 0.679. On the Human Poverty Index, the territories are ranked seventh on a list of 103 developing countries, with other Arab countries ranked below them. Saudi Arabia is ranked 32; Syria is 29; Iran is 36; Egypt is 55; liberated South Africa (all those who accuse Israel of ‘apartheid’, please note) is 56.

Now what is the one factor which the Palestinians have that other Arab states do not have, the factor which lifts their living standards above even those Arab states which have massive oil wealth? It is their close economic relationship with Israel, both in terms of the jobs that Israel provides for them and the massive amounts of aid that Israel pours in to the territories. And what has been the Palestinians’ response to this country which is so crucial to their living standards? Why, to murder its citizens in great numbers and try to destroy it altogether. And what has been the outcome of that genocidal campaign against Israel, apart from murdering large numbers of Israelis? Why, to put Palestinian development into reverse.

Is this the biggest self-inflicted wound in history?

There's that old saying, "Don't suicide bomb the hand that feeds.

Simon Wiesenthal Dead at 96

From Associated Press:

VIENNA, Austria - Simon Wiesenthal, the Holocaust survivor who helped track down Nazi war criminals following World War II, then spent the later decades of his life fighting anti-Semitism and prejudice against all people, died Tuesday. He was 96.

Wiesenthal, who helped find one-time SS leader Adolf Eichmann and the policeman who arrested Anne Frank, died in his sleep at his home in Vienna, said Rabbi Marvin Hier, dean and founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles.

"I think he'll be remembered as the conscience of the Holocaust. In a way he became the permanent representative of the victims of the Holocaust, determined to bring the perpetrators of the greatest crime to justice," Hier told The Associated Press.

A survivor of five Nazi death camps, Wiesenthal changed his life's mission after the war, dedicating himself to tracking down Nazi war criminals and to being a voice for the 6 million Jews who died during the onslaught. He himself lost 89 relatives in the Holocaust.

Wiesenthal spent more than 50 years hunting Nazi war criminals, speaking out against neo-Nazism and racism, and remembering the Jewish experience as a lesson for humanity. Through his work, he said, some 1,100 Nazi war criminals were brought to justice.

"When history looks back I want people to know the Nazis weren't able to kill millions of people and get away with it," he once said.

Pakistani President Musharraf
Reaches Out To Jews

From Daniel Pipes at Front Page Magazine:

When the Malaysian currency tanked in late 1997, the country’s then-prime minister, Mahathir Mohamad, said he had “definite information” that Jews were the cause. “We do not want to say that this is a plot by the Jews, but in reality it is a Jew who triggered the currency plunge, and coincidentally [financier George] Soros is a Jew.” Mahathir went on to say that just as “the Jews would rob Palestinians…this is what they are doing to our country.”

Mahathir’s anti-Semitism is so typical of discourse in the Muslim world over the last generation that I have found an “uneasy parallel” between it and Nazi Germany of the 1930s.

This background makes clear the historic nature of a speech by the president of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, to the American Jewish Congress on September 17. More coincidentally, he, too, singled out George Soros as a symbol of Jewish financial prowess, but very differently.

Lauding Jewish groups in the United States, Musharraf remarked that they “were at the forefront in opposing the ethnic cleansing of Muslims in Bosnia,” adding: “I am told that the largest contributor to the Bosnian cause was the Jewish-American businessman and philanthropist, George Soros.”

Most news coverage of the Musharraf speech focused on the prospect of Pakistan opening diplomatic relations with Israel (Reuters: “Pakistan leader urges U.S. Jews to help make peace”), but what is potentially of lasting importance about the Musharraf address – beyond the mere fact of its being delivered to a Jewish organization – was the president’s respectful, accurate, and constructive comments about Jews.

He began with the important observation that Jews and Muslims “have many similarities and few divergences in their faith and culture,” then listed three specifics: belief in the oneness of God, shared ways of greeting, and a common phrase in the Talmud and Koran. And Moses, he pointed out, is the prophet most often referred to in the Koran.

Musharraf noted how “our experiences and histories intertwine” and then elaborated on what he called the two communities’ “rich and very long” history of interaction. He mentioned the “shining examples” of Cordova, Baghdad, Istanbul, and Bukhara, the golden period of Muslim Spain, and the joint experience of the Spanish Inquisition. Generalizing from the inquisition, he correctly asserted that Jews and Muslims “have not only lived together and shared prosperity, but also suffered together.”

Against this background, Musharraf portrayed the period since 1945 as an aberration. As I have also noted, 1945 was the pivotal year when Jews stopped leaving Christendom for Islamdom and reversed directions. The past six decades, in other words, broke a pattern of thirteen centuries. Musharraf resisted ascribing blame for this gulf but limited himself to noting that the problems occurred during the “bloodiest century in human history.”

He commended American Jews for their role in protecting Bosnian Muslims and praised them for offering “legal and other assistance” to Muslims in the United States. “I wish to acknowledge and appreciate this,” he said. Musharraf also flattered Jews as “probably the most distinguished and influential community” in the United States. Looking to the future, he emphasized the role of compassion in repairing Muslim-Jewish relations.

Properly to appreciate the significance of this speech means hearing it with Muslim ears. It may not sound like much, for example, that he referred to the Holocaust as the Jewish people’s “greatest tragedy,” but the profusion of Muslim Holocaust deniers, including Mahmoud Abbas, makes this an important statement.

Musharraf’s speech can significantly affect Muslim views of Jews only if it is part of a larger effort. So, in the question period, I asked him if he would take steps to ensure that his vision of Jews be spread. He admitted to having not thought this through but on the spot there, in public, in view of a bank of television cameras, he made a commitment to do precisely that.

Musharraf’s reaching out to Jews is part of a much broader project of developing what he calls “Enlightened Moderation” in Islam. Although until now more talk than action, even the talk is a major achievement. Sadly, only Musharraf and one other Muslim leader, King Abdullah II of Jordan, are articulating a moderate version of Islam, but at least those two are doing so.

For his efforts, Musharraf deserves appreciation and encouragement.

(Pastorius comment): Yeah, he sure does. It's actually amazing that Musharraf would choose to make such a stand. There have been multiple attempts on his life over the past few years. A couple of them were rather close calls. He's either a very brave and visionary man, or this is part of a larger strategic plan the goal of which I can not imagine.

Monday, September 19, 2005

North Korea Agrees To
Drop It's Nuke Program

From Associated Press:

BEIJING - North Korea agreed Monday to stop building nuclear weapons and allow international inspections in exchange for energy aid, economic cooperation and security assurances, a breakthrough that marked a first step toward disarmament after two years of six-nation talks.

The chief U.S. envoy to the talks praised the development as a "win-win situation" and "good agreement for all of us." But he promptly urged Pyongyang to make good on its promises by ending operations at its main nuclear facility at Yongbyon.

"What is the purpose of operating it at this point?" said U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill. "The time to turn it off would be about now."

Despite the deal's potential to help significantly ease friction between the North and the United States after years of false starts and setbacks, Hill remained cautious.

"We have to see what comes in the days and weeks ahead," he said.

President Bush called it a positive step, but he expressed some skepticism about whether North Korea will live up to its promises.

"They have said — in principle — that they will abandon their weapons programs," Bush said. "And what we have said is, `Great. That's a wonderful step forward.' But now we've got to verify whether that happens."

Negotiation backed up by the threat of force. As Vito Corleone said, "You can get far with a kind word, but you can get much further with a kind word and a gun."

This is why the United States must remain the most powerful nation on Earth, if humanity is to stand a chance of surviving; France, Russia, China - and all the other civilized countries of the world, who sit with such dignity on the United Nations Security Council - would never act to stop North Korea, or Iraq, or Iran, the way the U.S. has done.

No, instead they would just continue to sell N. Korea the parts to make the bombs.

Iraqis Gather In Streets In Defiance of
Zarqawis Declared "All-Out War"

While the media does it's damndest to give us the impression that we are losing in Iraq, hundreds of thousands of Shi'ites are gathering in the streets of Karbala in defiance of the death threats from the "insurgents" (Islamic Jihadis). Just days before, Zarqawi had declared a massive "all-out war" on those who showed up:

KARBALA, Iraq - Hundreds of thousands of Shiites descended Monday on the holy city of Karbala, paying tribute to one of their most revered religious figures in what Iraqi officials called a defiant pilgrimage despite threats by militants.

In Baghdad, officials also announced that one of Saddam Hussein's nephews was sentenced to life in prison for funding the violent insurgency, and would stand trial on other charges.

Authorities said they had already uncovered a cache of explosives and arrested four insurgents for allegedly planning on the pilgrims attending festivities marking the birthday of the 12th Shiite imam, Mohammed al-Mahdi.

Similar gatherings in Karbala and other Shiite holy cities have ended in tragedy. In December, more than 50 pilgrims were killed in a series of bombings in Karbala, 50 miles south of Baghdad, and in March, at least 181 people died in coordinated bombings of Shiite pilgrims in Karbala and Baghdad. Both attacks were blamed on Sunni extremists.

Just days before this celebration, al-Qaida in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, in a recorded message, declared an "all-out war" on Shiites and others deemed American collaborators. But Iraqi Vice President Adil Abdul-Mahdi said Monday such threats would only "strengthen the defiance" of Iraqis.

Abdul-Mahdi said the Shiite pilgrims heading to Karbala were the "biggest (example of) defiance in the face of threats by al-Zarqawi," according a statement released by the Iraqi presidency.

The explosives cache found near Karbala was discovered late Sunday on farm land on the outskirts of the city, said police spokesman Rahman Mishawi.

Three "non-Iraqi Arabs" were arrested, Mishawi said, along with a man armed with several hand grenades who was caught walking with a procession of pilgrims.

Officials said they expected more than 1 million people to gather for the celebration marking Imam al-Mahdi's birth in 868 A.D. According to Shiite tradition, he vanished without a trace and will return before Judgment Day leading the faithful in a battle for a true and just Islamic state.

The Meaning Behind the Name "Arafat"?

The journey to Mecca, called the Hajj, is one of the pillars of Islam. Thus, it is a sacred journey, filled with signifigance. The Hajj demands "purity of soul, body, mind, and dress." Apparently, it is also a spiritual journey with room for hatred of Americans and Jews.

Should that surprise us?:

Amer Abbas, 45, came from war-ravaged Iraq to find serenity in the spiritual journey.

“I beg God to make the Americans leave our country and put an end to the occupation.
The Americans are responsable for all the destruction that has hit out country,” said Abbas, who is from “Diyala, in the Sunni Triangle which resists the occupation.”

Yeah, it's the Americans, not Hussein. Not the Iraqi's themselves. Right.

Somehow, the people of Iraq, unique among all the peoples of the Earth, themselves have no responsibility for their position in the world. And somehow the evil Americans control all. Think about it, Amer. What does that say about your people?

And then, we've got Ahmed:

Ahmed AbdelKarim, an Egyptian building painter based in Saudi Arabia, was performing the hajj for the eleventh time. But lacking the Saudi approval necessary to carry out the pilgrimage, the 37-year-old had no place in the camps and spent the day in a tiny tent on the pavement.“I want to pray that God rids Palestine of the Jews,” AbdelKarim said.

Now, I find this an interesting quote, because the title of the AFP article from which this quote is lifted is "Two million Muslims stand on Mount Arafat in hajj climax."

While it is notable that such a sentiment would be expressed on a mountain called Arafat, that is not actually why I find this a particularly interesting quote. The truly intereting thing about the quote is what it reveals about Arafat, his goals, and who he must have thought he was to his people.

Apparently, Mt. Arafat overlooks Mecca, which is the destination of the spritual journey of the Hajj. Does that sound familiar?

At the end of Moses' life, God took him to the top of Mount Nebo, so that he could look down on the Promised Land just before he died.

So too, the Muslims climb to the top of Mt. Arafat, just before they descend to the final destination of their Hajj Pilgrimage; Mecca.

Yasser Arafat's given name was not Arafat, it was al-Huesseini. The name al-Husseini was also the surname of Arafat's mentor Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem during the period of the 1930's and 1940's. The Grand Mufti worked with Hitler to insure that as many Jews as possible be put to death. Here is a photo of the Mufti with Hitler.

So, Yasser Arafat adopted the name Arafat at a later date. We are left to assume that the name Arafat meant something to him, if he was willing to abandon the name of his mentor to assume the new name of Arafat.

I'm guessing he thought of himself as a kind of Moses, leading his people to the promised land.

It is interesting to note that, in his mind, the final piece to the puzzle which must be completed before his people were able to reach the spiritual Mecca, was the removal of the Jews from the land of Palestine.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

It's All About The Ladies

A woman is about to drop her ballot paper in a ballot box in Kandahar, Afghanistan, Sunday, Sept. 18, 2005. Afghanistan held landmark parliamentary elections on Sept. 18, the first in three decades. (AP Photo/Saurabh Das)

Posted by Picasa

We Are Winning The War On Terror

I hope the Astute Blogger doesn't get angry with me, because I'm going to just steal his entire post here. I'm afraid that if I simply say, "God read it," only a percentage of you will do so. So, here it is:

Bush's bold post-9/11 moves have spurred a worldwide democratic revolution which is shattering old myths and splintering old tribes - ALL FOR THE BEST:

Today, in Afghanistan they're holding parliamentary elections (!!);

soon Iraqis will hold a constitutional referendum (!!);

Syira was kicked out of Lebanon (!!);

the AQ Khan nuke smuggling ring was broken up(!!);

Qaddafy renounced all WMD's and quit his WMD programs (!!) ;

Pakistan and India hold peace talks (!!);

Pakistan's Musharraf meets publically with Israeli officials and Jewish leaders - as do leaders from several Arab Gulf nations (!!);

AND THE U.N. LOOKS LIKE ITS FESTERING SORES OF INEPTNESS AND INCOMPETENCE (is the U.N. the Louisiana/New Orleans bureaucracy the world, or what!) is coming to end end and real reform - led by Ambassador John Bolton - will soon be undertaken; and so on...

As these great events occur, idiotic myths which shackled the world to vestigial thinking and stagnant inneffective polices fall by the wayside:

The Leftist myth that the Taliban had halted the herion-trade was debunked by Ahmed Rashid in 1999 - TWO YEARS BEFORE 9/11 - from The Taliban: Exporting Extremism by Ahmed Rashid November/December 1999 Foreign Affairs :

China, too, has been affected by the ascendance of the Taliban. Beijing shunned the civil war in Afghanistan until February 1999, when it first made overtures to the Taliban in an attempt to stem the tide of Afghan heroin flooding Xinjiang. The heroin was helping fund Islamist nationalist opposition to Beijing among the Uighurs and other Muslim ethnic groups. ...

Around Kandahar, poppy fields stretch as far as the horizon. In Herat, the Taliban have set up model farms where farmers learn the best methods of heroin cultivation. The U.N. Drug Control Program reports that Afghanistan produced 4,600 metric tons of opium in 1999-twice as much as in the previous year. Afghanistan now produces three times more opium than the rest of the world put together. Ninety-six percent of it is cultivated in Taliban-controlled areas, making the Taliban the largest heroin producer in the world. ...

Whereas Afghan opium was exported to the West through Pakistan in 1980, there are now multiple export routes through Iran, the Persian Gulf states, and Central Asia. As these routes expand, so do the beneficiaries. U.S. officials claim that, with most of his bank accounts frozen, bin Laden now finances his operations through opium.

Chinese officials report that drug smuggling from Afghanistan is similarly funding the Uighur opposition. Uzbekistan's government has drawn a direct drug-smuggling link between Afghanistan and the Ferghana Valley, where the IMU is based. The civil war in Tajikistan was partly fueled by Afghan drugs, and Pakistan's economy has been crippled by them.

Furthermore, according to governments in the region, heroin addiction is growing: there are now five million addicts in Pakistan, three million in Iran, and one million in China,largely in Xinjiang.

But because there was a temporary surge in herion production in the ensuing chaos after the Taliban were defeated, the Loony Left argued that perhaps this why the "Bush Crime Family" (a term Cindy Sheehan likes to use!) WANTED to crank up the drug trade.

WELL: the Karzai goverment is making a lot of progress on that front, and once again heroin production is declining.

Another long-time myth that has crumbled is the myth of Pan-Arabism. The burgeoning civil war in Gaza goes on (with genocidal racist/jihadist Gazans murdering corrupt racist/ nationalistic Gazans and nary an Arab nation takes sides. Sunni Arabs daily murder HUNDREDS of Shia Arabs in Iraq and nary an Arab nation takes sides. And these deadly clashes destroy another myth: the myth of Muslim unity; the myth that somehow Bush's Iraq War was "uniting the Muslim world against the USA." Well, if that was the case why is MOST of the terror and most of the killing Sunni on Shia, and NOT Muslim of non-Muslim!? And Iraq also exposes the fact that the ISLAMOFASCIST ENEMY is most willing to murder Muslims of their OWN SECT: the Arab Iraqi Sunnis are murdering Kurds - who are also SUNNIS!

What do all these shattered myths and the mayhem between these splintered tribes have common?

They were all brought on by the Bush Doctrine, which holds that a false peace and an "unstable stability" brought about by supporting tyrannies was NOT worth a thing, and that risking temporary instability - in order to increase liberty and democracy (and thereby prosperity) - would not only "drain the swamp" (by making life for those trapped in tyrannical nations more worth living), but would make us safer and the whole world more stable and more properous.

Though we are still in the obvioulsy unstable part of the struggle - obviously STILL IN THE DESTRUCTIVE PHASE OF THE "CREATIVE DESTRUCTION" of the previous global status quo, there are ample signs that it is working (see paragraph #2).

As the wise man says: FASTER PLEASE!

The Astute Blogger has one of the best blogs on the internet. I recommend reading him everyday.

Iran's Plan To Defeat The United States
In The War on Terror

From Amir Taheri at Benador Associates:

Incredible though it may sound there are signs that Tehran may be preparing for a military confrontation with the United States, and has convinced itself that it could win.

The first sign came last June with the election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as president of the Islamic Republic, an event that completed the conquest of all levers of power by the most radical elements of the establishment.

Since thenIran Readying for Conflict With US the revolutionary factions have conducted a little publicized purge of the military, the security, the civil service, and state-owned corporations and media.

The most significant purges have affected the military high command.

Among those replaced are the defense minister, the commander-in-chief of the regular army and his four deputies, 11 senior commanders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), and five commanders of the paramilitary Mobilization of the Dispossessed. Some of the purged officers have been "parked" in a mysterious new organ called "The Defense Guidance Commission" attached to the office of the "Supreme Guide" Ayatollah Ali Khamenehi.

The minister of intelligence and security and the minister of the interior, who controls the police and the gendarmerie, have also been replaced.

Another sign that Tehran may be preparing for war is the appointment of military officers to posts normally held by civilians, such as governors, mayors and directors of major public corporations.

But, perhaps, the surest sign yet is the military build up under way in the five provinces bordering Iraq. The region, with a population of 20 millions, has been put under the control of the IRGC which has also taken over units of the regular army, including the 88th Division, and the border police. Iran is estimated to have 250,000 troops in the area, its biggest military build-up since the end of the Iran-Iraq war in 1988.

One of the first acts of the new Cabinet led by Ahmadinejad was to approve an "emergency" fund of $700 million to be disbursed at the discretion of "the supreme guide" for "sacred defense purposes."

The new administration has also decided to speed up defense disbursements under a five-year plan approved by Khamenehi last year. The plan aims at doubling the military budget by 2010. But it now seems that, thanks to rising oil revenues, most of the plan could be completed by 2008.

In the past few weeks top regime figures, including Khamenehi and Ahmadinejad, have made a series of unscheduled visits to Mash'had, Iran's second largest city. One curious fact revealed during these visits is that a bunker-like structure to house the "supreme guide" is being completed close to the "holy shrine" of Reza, the eighth imam. The complex could also house the top echelon of government, including the president, the Cabinet and members of the Islamic Majlis (Parliament).

The choice of Mash'had is not accidental. The city is located 1,000 km from Tehran and thus as far as possible inside Iran from American fire power in Iraq and the Gulf. The US is also expected to shrink from attacks against the Mash'had bunker for fear of collateral damage to the "holy shrine" of the imam a few hundred yards away.

The summer's comings-and-goings in Mash'had have provoked rumors that Khamenehi plans to appoint Abbas Va'ez Tabasi, the mulla who runs the eighth imam's foundation, as "deputy supreme guide", just in case!

The belief that the Americans would not attack sites close to "holy shrines' has also led to the creation of a massive new military base at Fadak, a suburb of the "holy city" of Qom where the eighth imam's sister is buried, south of Tehran. Work on the base that covers an area of 7.2 square km started in August.

Piecing together the bits of the jigsaw one may guess the outline of Tehran's scenario for what it believes is an inevitable clash with the US:

• The diplomatic tussle over Iran's nuclear plans goes to the Security Council that will fail to take a decision thanks to Russian and Chinese vetoes.

• The US, after much huffing and puffing launches air strikes against Iran's nuclear installations. (Tehran loves Israel to also participate because that would give the Islamic Republic a better claim to be fighting on behalf of Islam as a whole.)

• Iran retaliates by ordering the forces it controls inside Iraq to attack American and British troops. At the same time the Lebanese branch of the Hezbollah launches massive rocket attacks against Israel while Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, whose leaders spent the past month in Tehran meeting Khamenehi and his aides, organize a wave of suicide operations against Israel from Jerusalem and the West Bank.

• The US and its British allies, stationed in southern Iraq, launch a three-pronged attack, from Shalamcheh, Hamroun and Shatt Al-Arab to seize control of Khuzestan, the province that accounts for 70 percent of Iran's oil production.

• Iranian Special Forces attack Iraq from the Zaynalkosh salient, south of the Kurdish provinces, some 80 km from Baghdad's first defenses in Ba'aqubah.

• Hazara Shi'ites strikes against Kabul, the Afghan capital, from Maydanshahr while Pushtun warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and the remnants of the Taleban, some of whom are under Iranian protection, attack across Afghanistan.

• The Americans and their allies attack Khuzestan.

• Iran closes the Strait of Hormuz.

• The Americans attack the Iranian provinces of Kermanshahan and Kurdistan.

• US-led forces attack across the Mandali-Ilam axis. The Iranians retreat to the Zagross mountain range, the first line of Iran's natural defenses. (To fight along the Zagross the IRGC is building new bases at Khorramabad, Pessyan, Borujerd, Zagheh and Malayer in the province of Luristan. The bases would assure the logistics of a quarter of a million troops, and provide temporary shelter for half a million refugees from the border. These bases will complement older ones further west, at Sahneh and Kangavar. )
• Oil prices top $100 and the global economy plunges into a crisis.

• Americans launch cruise missiles against "regime targets" in Tehran. But the regime is already in Mash'had.

• Global TV networks air images of "indiscriminate carnage" and "wanton destruction" in Iranian cities.

• The Security Council meets in emergency and orders a cease-fire while the American media and Congress revolt against President George W Bush and his "pre-emptive" strategy.

• Anti-Bush marches in Washington and dozens of other cities with Hollywood figures and other celebrities calling for Bush to be overthrown.

• Bush accepts a UN-brokered cease-fire and withdraws his forces.

• The Islamic Republic emerges victorious from what Ahmadinejad sees as "a clash of civilizations."

• The Americans leave Iraq and Afghanistan as Bush becomes a lame duck for the rest of his presidency.

• The Islamic Republic gains new domestic legitimacy and proceeds to crush its opponents as "enemies of the nation and of Islam."

• Iran can speed up making its nuclear weapons and long-range missiles without being harassed by Washington.

• Iran becomes "the core power" of a new "Islamic pole" in a multipolar system with China, the European Union and Latin America, Under the Bolivarist leadership of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez emerging as other "poles".

• Bush's successor acknowledges Iran's new status and sends Bill Clinton, who apologized to Iran for "our past misdeeds" in 2000, to Tehran to offer another formal apology on behalf of Bush's successor and offer Ahmadinejad "a grand bargain".

• The Islamic Republic is now free to proceed to address what Khamenehi has described as its "greatest historic task" which is the destruction of Israel.

Sounds outlandish? Well, it is.

The Islamic Republic is a fragile structure in a zone of political earthquakes. Logically, the last thing it should want is war. Nevertheless, former President Muhammad Khatami has warned that Tehran may be boxing itself into a position in which it will either have to surrender or fight.

The only question is, do maniacs surrender when they have nuclear weapons at their disposal?