Wednesday, 10 August 2005
I don?t regard it as a grim task at all.
Topic: Islamic Jihad
is one of America's and the English speaking world's leading public intellectuals.
On The Persian Edition of Washington Prism
By Christopher Hitchens is one of America's and the English speaking world's leading public intellectuals. He is the author of more than ten books, including, most recently, A Long Short War: The Postponed Liberation of Iraq (2003), Why Orwell Matters (2002), The Trial of Henry Kissinger (2001), and Letters to a Young Contrarian (2001). He writes for leading American and British publications, including The London Review of Books, The New Left Review, Slate, The New York Review of Books, Newsweek International, The Times Literary Supplement, and The Washington Post. He is also a regular television and radio commentator.
For many years, Hitchens was seen as one of America's leading leftist commentators. Shortly after the September 11 attacks in the United States, he began publicly criticizing fellow leftist intellectuals for what he viewed as their "moral and political collapse" in their failure to stand up to what he saw as "Islamo-fascism". He publicly feuded with many of America's leading leftist intellectuals about the war in Iraq, which he supported, much to their anger. He subsequently resigned from his position as a columnist for the Nation, America's leading leftist magazine, in protest.
Born in England, Hitchens has lived in the United States for more than twenty years. He is one of America's most recognizable intellectuals and has taught as a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley; the University of Pittsburgh; and the New School of Social Research. He spoke with Washington Prism at his home in Washington D.C.
Q - Your much-discussed separation from the American left began shortly after the September 11 attacks. What prompted your displeasure with the left?
A - The September 11 attacks were one of those rare historical moments, like 1933 in Germany or 1936 in Spain or 1968, when you are put in a position to take a strong stand for what is right. The left failed this test. Instead of strongly standing against these nihilistic murderers, people on the left, such as Noam Chomsky, began to make excuses for these murderers, openly saying that Bin ladin was, however crude in his methods, in some ways voicing a liberation theology. This is simply a moral and political collapse.
But its not only that. It’s a missed opportunity for the left. Think of it this way: If a group of theocratic nihilists drive planes full of human beings into buildings full of human beings announcing nothing by way of a program except their nihilism and if they turn out to have been sheltered by two regimes favored by the United States and the national security establishment, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia to be precise, two of only three countries to recognize the Taliban, and if Republicans were totally taken by surprise by this and if the working class of New York had to step forward and become the shield of society in the person of the fire and police brigades, it seemed to me that this would have been a good opportunity for the left to demand a general revision of all the assumptions we carried about the post cold war world. We were attacked by a religious dictatorship and the working class were pushed into defending elites by the total failure of our leadership and total failure of our intelligence. The attack emanated partly from the failure of regimes supported by that same elite national security establishment– Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. If the left can’t take advantage of a moment like that: whats it for? whats its secularism for? Whats its internationalism, class attitude, democracy for?
You don’t get that many measurable historical moments in your life, but you must recognize them when they come. This was one of those moments and the left collectively decided to get it wrong and I realized at that moment that, to borrow a slogan that slightly irritates me, but is useful: "Not in my name.” I'm not part of that family. I wanted to force a split, a political split on the left to which a small extent I think succeeded. Today, there is a small pro-regime change left and I'm a proud part of it.
Q - It seems that the left had less difficulty accepting the war in Afghanistan as they did the war in Iraq.
That is true, but of the hard core left it isn’t true. They also opposed the removal of the Taliban. When it came to using force, the least they did was predict a quagmire. By the way, there weren't alone. The New York Times did so too. They said at minimum we would witness another Vietnam, which is a pretty serious charge to make as someone who believes that then and now the Vietnam war was a war of aggression and atrocity and racism. When someone says something is another Vietnam, they better be serious because that’s a serious charge.
But lets look at the case of Iraq and the left. If you asked someone who has the principles of a 1968 leftist the following question: what is your attitude to a regime that has committed genocide, invaded its neighbors, militarized its society into a police state, that has privatized its economy so it is owned by one family, that has defied the non proliferation treaty in many ways, that sought weapons to commit genocide again and cheated on inspections, that has abolished the existence of a neighboring arab muslim state? What is your view of this as anyone who is a 1968 leftist? For me, I would be appalled if anyone knew me even slightly would not guess my attitude. Iraq should have been taken care of a long time ago. Instead, when I made my view public, I was berated by the left and my view was seen as an insane eccentricity.
I should also note that I have friends and comrades in the Iraqi and Kurdish left going back at least till the early 1990s. For me, supporting the war was an elementary duty of solidarity. I said: I'm on your side and I’ll stay there until you’re in and they’re out.
Q - If there was a Democratic president on 9/11, would there have been a difference of opinion in the American left about the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq?
Not from people like Michael Moore (the American film director and strong critic of President Bush), who makes a perfectly good brownshirt [fascist]. Or Noam Chomsky. No, it would not. To them it would have been further proof that the ruling class just has two faces and one party. But I think, in the mainstream of the democratic and Republican parties, you would have seen an exact switch. Richard Holbrooke’s position (Holbrooke was Clinton's UN Ambassador and is a leading Democratic foreign policy thinker) would be Dick Cheney’s position. The ones in the middle would have just done a switch, finding arguments to support or criticize the war. In fact, I remember that people in the Clinton administration spoke of an inevitable confrontation coming with Saddam. They dropped this idea only because it was a Republican president. That is simply disgraceful. It is likewise disgraceful how many Republicans ran as isolationists against [former Vice-President] Al Gore in the 2000 elections. The only people who come out of this whole affair well are an odd fusion of the old left – the small pro regime change left – and some of the people known as neoconservatives who have a commitment to liberal democracy. Many of the neocons have Marxist backgrounds and believe in ideas and principles and have worked with both parties in power.
Q – In your book, Why Orwell Matters, you noted that Orwell once refused an invitation to speak at the League of European Freedom on the question of Yugoslavian freedom – a cause he believed in. He refused to speak because he felt that the organization failed to condemn British imperialism in India and Burma. He saw that as a fatal flaw. Do the neoconservatives have a fatal flaw: on the one hand supporting Middle East democracy, on the other refusing to condemn Israeli policies that stifle Palestinian freedom aspirations?
A – Orwell said, at the time, that he would not speak for any organization that was opposed to tyranny that did not demand British withdrawal from India and Burma. He also noted that the liberation of Europe did not include the liberation of Spain from the fascists or Portugal. He also noted that it had included the enslavement of Poland.
In the case of the Palestinians, it is generally true that United States political culture doesn’t care about the Palestinians. We are taught to think of them as an inconvenient people who are in the way of Israel and a regional settlement. They are people about whom something should be done or, more condescendingly, for whom something should be provided.
I've spent three decades writing about the Palestinians and publishing a book with Edward Said [leading Palestinian intellectual and critic of Israel] about it. All political factions in this country have been lousy on this issue, but none lousier than the Democratic party. The Democrat party truly is what some people crudely say: a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Israeli lobby. It is one thing it has never deviated on: that and abortion. The only two things the Democrats have never flip flopped about.
The neocons are honorably divided on Israel. Take Paul Wolfowitz, for example. He is very critical of settlements and the whole idea of Greater Israel. Whereas Richard Perle (a prominent neoconservative thinker) doesn’t regard the areas known as Judea and Samaria (the West bank) as occupied territory. He regards them as part of a future Israeli state. I'm looking forward to the neoconservative split on this getting wider.
Q - Some have said that only columnists and public intellectuals can afford principles, whereas politicians sometimes must succumb to realism. In your book, Why Orwell Matters, you admired Orwell because you said that he understood that that politics are fleeting but principles endure. In our day, can a politician rule by principle?
A - It depends on what the principle is. If the principle is that all men are equal or created equal, I don’t think its possible to observe that principle in practice. But if the principle is, say, something cruder such as: can we coexist with aggressive internationalist totalitarian ideologies, then I think you not only can but you should act consistently against that. Never mind the principles for one minute, but the lesson of realism is: that if you don’t fight them now you fight them later.
They [Islamist radicals or, as Hitchens calls them, Islamo-fascists] gave us no peace and we shouldn’t give them any. We can't live on the same planet as them and I'm glad because I don’t want to. I don’t want to breathe the same air as these psychopaths and murders and rapists and torturers and child abusers. Its them or me. I'm very happy about this because I know it will be them. It’s a duty and a responsibility to defeat them. But it's also a pleasure. I don’t regard it as a grim task at all.
I have been trying without succes to think of something I could add to the above without detracting from it, so I won't
Tuesday, 9 August 2005
State Change and the American Electorate.
Topic: Out of Flyover Land
The Last few years there has been a gradual shift from the Democratic Party to the Republicans. basically because those leaving the Democratic Party
have no where else to go. Post-9/11 ParityThe Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and Bush's response to the attacks, marked a major turning point in party identification. Republican party identification rose to 30%, while the Democrats fell to 31%, putting the parties into a virtual tie for the allegiance of the public.
Because Republicans traditionally turn out to vote in higher numbers than do Democrats, the current division in party affiliation among the public could provide the GOP with a slight electoral advantage, all other things being equal.
A striking feature of the post-9/11 shift in partisan identification is its breadth. The shift is seen in most major demographic and social groups in the population, and is fairly consistent in size.
Among these groups, the average decline in the Democratic advantage is five percentage points, but no group in the population shifted more than 10 points. Greater than average Republican gains in party affiliation are seen among white Protestants (nine-point shift after Sept. 11), white Catholics (eight points), and Hispanics (eight points).
Everyone expects this trend to continue either to the Left or the Right in a series of battles for gradual minute changes. I am not certain this will be the case.
State Change is a Chaos Theory Model in which a cusp point is reached and a previous gradual change suddenly becomes a rapid and total change of State.
An example would be water at 32 degrees Fahrenheit. At that temperature water can exist either as liquid water or solid ice. ANY withdrawal
of heat from liquid water at 32 degrees will result in rapid and massive crystallization into Ice.
Another example I hope you never encounter is Flash Steaming in a microwave.
a stationary cup of water in a microwave oven can heat past the boiling point without actually boiling. If that happens, placing an object (like a teabag) in the water or jarring the cup could cause the sudden — and explosive — conversion of part of the water to steam.
Few realize that it is possible to super heat water in a microwave. It will still be in liquid form but the SLIGHTEST disturbance in some cases just lifting a cup and jiggling the water can make the entire contents Flash into steam some people have gotten severe facial scalding that way.
I think the American Electorate is hovering just on the other side of a State Change, I mean when you consider ALICE COOPER is a registered Republican?
when I read the list of people who are supporting Kerry, if I wasn't already a Bush supporter, I would have immediately switched
The American Sheik
Topic: Iraq War
This story caught my eye, in a week old copy of my local newspaer, since they make you pay to look at anything but the current day's edition, I found the same story on the.The Salt Lake Tribune
U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Dale Horn, right, of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., speaks with a villager and Mohammed Ismail Ahmed, left, a local sheik. Horn's assistance to locals prompted them to make him a sheik. (Dale L. Horn/The Associated Press
U.S. soldier's aid to Iraqis earns him title of sheik
By Antonio Castaneda
The Associated Press
U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Dale Horn, right, of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., speaks with a villager and Mohammed Ismail Ahmed, left, a local sheik. Horn's assistance to locals prompted them to make him a sheik. (Dale L. Horn/The Associated Press)
QAYYARAH, Iraq - Sheik Horn floats around the room in white robe and headdress, exchanging pleasantries with dozens of village leaders.
But he is the only sheik with blonde streaks in his mustache - and the only one who attended country music star Toby Keith's recent concert in Baghdad with fellow U.S. soldiers.
Officially, he is Army Staff Sgt. Dale L. Horn, but to residents of the 37 villages and towns that he patrols he is known as the American sheik.
Sheiks, or village elders, are known as the real power in rural Iraq. And the 5-foot-6-inch Floridian's ascension to the esteemed position came through humor and the military's need to clamp down on rocket attacks.
Late last year a full-blown battle between insurgents and U.S. and Iraqi forces had erupted, and U.S. commanders assigned a unit to stop rocket and mortar attacks that regularly hit their base. Horn, who had been trained to operate radar for a field artillery unit, was now thrust into a job that largely hinged on coaxing locals into divulging information about insurgents.
Horn, 25, a native of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., acknowledges he had little interest in the region before coming here. But a local sheik friendly to U.S. forces, Mohammed Ismail Ahmed, explained the inner workings of rural Iraqi society on one of Horn's first Humvee patrols.
Horn says he was intrigued, and started making a point of stopping by all the villages, all but one dominated by Sunni Arabs, to talk to people about their life and security problems.
Moreover, he pressed for development projects in the area: he now boasts that he helped funnel $136,000 worth of aid into the area. Part of that paid for delivery of clean water to 30 villages during the broiling summer months.
Mohammed, Horn's mentor, eventually suggested during a meeting of village leaders that Horn be named a sheik.
Some sheiks later gave him five sheep and a postage stamp of land, fulfilling some of the requirements for sheikdom. Others encouraged him to start looking for a second wife, which Horn's spouse back in Florida immediately vetoed.
Cool we have at least ONE American Lawrence of Arabia. ;-) I bet (know) we have others no one hears about.
I Wonder What They Really Meant?
Topic: Out of Flyover Land
I spend a lot of time thinking, this fact has been, to paraphrase Jerome K. Jerome
the cause of much misery to myself and discomfort to every one about me--my lady friends especially complained most bitterly about it.
But still, I seem to persist in looking at the World and thinking about what I see.
Tonight I was on a meal break in the Plant Cafeteria. They have TVs running, to tell the truth, besides turning on a Movie, that's about the only time I watch that medium. I don't watch it to keep informed on World Events, certainly.
A commercial came on put out by BP. It is about how they are working to provide us energy in an environmentally friendly manner.
The Woman they had speaking had a strangely familiar caste to her features. I looked and thought, "where have I seen that expression before? Those drooping, half closed eyes looked mighty familiar."
Then I realized of what she reminded me. I quit even drinking 16 years ago. So needless to say I do not indulge in "Better Living Through Chemicals", however in my younger wilder days, I by no means lived in a Monastery.
I recall that half-closed drooping eye look, it was the look I used to see in people's eyes, just before they passed out. ;-)
My buddy Gabe, who I am usually with on breaks, was doing more "listening" than looking. He made the comment, "they should have her use simpler language, the words she uses do not speak to the average person."
I looked at him and said, "what if THAT is the point Gabe?"
On the surface this is a "How we supply you with energy and protect the environment" commercial.
What if it is REALLY
a commercial which says beneath the surface, "Look what complete idiots we have to put up with"?
Nah, that couldn't be it. I probably, as I said in the beginning of this, think
too much and tend to the cynical.
But still, the next time you see a BP commercial?
Look at the woman's eyes, listen to how she phrases he words and ask yourself.
I Wonder What They Really
Meant By That?
Looks Like He Choked
On The Warning Label
Topic: Out of Flyover Land
I once saw a Dilbert Cartoon, that had a guy laying stretched out beside a giant donut, stone cold dead.
Two Cops were standing looking down at him and the caption read.
Looks like he choked on the Warning Label
(If I can find that strip I will put it or a hyperlink here)
That flashed into my mind tonight at work on a smoke break, when a buddy started talking about yet another consumer group on a Crusade.
This one is to ban Sodium Fluoride. Gabe asked me if I had noticed the new warning labels on toothpaste. I responded, "Oh PLEASE, Who reads toothpaste tubes?"
"Well its poisonous", "Yeah that's true, makes good rat bait and is great for killing cockroaches, but in the levels in drinking water?"
Next thing you know they will want to ban Toxic Vitamins!
Then I thought, "Wonder how the Toxic Level for Sodium Fluoride compares the Vitamin A or Vitamin D?"
So I looked up the information for you good people.
I was Shocked, let me tell you SHOCKED to find that the Single Toxic Level for Sodium Fluoride for an Adult Male is.
Over a THOUSAND TIMES greater
than for Vitamin D and maybe 500 times greater than the long term Toxic Level for Vitamin A (I could not find a single dose level for it)
The Public doesn't need protected from Sodium Fluoride! It needs protected from KILLER TOXIC
Read the sordid truth.
Is fluoride, as provided by community water fluoridation, a toxic substance?
Acute fluoride toxicity occurring from the ingestion of optimally fluoridated water is impossible.104 The amount of fluoride necessary to cause death for a human adult (155 pound man) has been estimated to be 5-10 grams of sodium fluoride, ingested at one time.140 This is more than 10,000-20,000 times as much fluoride as is consumed at one time in a single 8-ounce glass of optimally fluoridated water.
In adults, a daily dose of 1.0 to 2.0 mg of vitamin D is toxic when consumed for a prolonged period. A single dose of about 50 mg or greater is toxic for adults.
Vitamin A toxicity can occur with long-term consumption of 20 mg of retinol or more per day. The symptoms of vitamin A overdosing include accumulation of water in the brain (hydrocephalus), vomiting, tiredness, constipation, bone pain, and severe headaches. The skin may acquire a rough and dry appearance, with hair loss and brittle nails. Vitamin A toxicity is a special issue during pregnancy. Expectant mothers who take 10 mg vitamin A or more on a daily basis may have an infant with birth defects. These birth defects include abnormalities of the face, nervous system, heart, and thymus gland. It is possible to take in toxic levels of vitamin A by eating large quantities of certain foods. For example, about 30 grams of beef liver, 500 grams of eggs, or 2,500 grams of mackerel would supply 10 mg of retinol. The livers of polar bears and other arctic animals may contain especially high levels of vitamin A.
And Folks Vitamins are not even half of what we face without knowing about it. I hesitate, but yes you have a right to KNOW about the hazards of
Frequently Asked Questions About Dihydrogen Monoxide (DHMO)
What is Dihydrogen Monoxide?
Dihydrogen Monoxide (DHMO) is a colorless and odorless chemical compound, also referred to by some as Dihydrogen Oxide, Hydrogen Hydroxide, Hydronium Hydroxide, or simply Hydric acid. Its basis is the unstable radical Hydroxide, the components of which are found in a number of caustic, explosive and poisonous compounds such as Sulfuric Acid, Nitroglycerine and Ethyl Alcohol.
For more detailed information, including precautions, disposal procedures and storage requirements, refer to the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for Dihydrogen Monoxide.
Yes, you should be concerned about DHMO! Although the U.S. Government and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) do not classify Dihydrogen Monoxide as a toxic or carcinogenic substance (as it does with better known chemicals such as hydrochloric acid and saccharine), DHMO is a constituent of many known toxic substances, diseases and disease-causing agents, environmental hazards and can even be lethal to humans in quantities as small as a thimbleful.
What are some of the dangers associated with DHMO?
Each year, Dihydrogen Monoxide is a known causative component in many thousands of deaths and is a major contributor to millions upon millions of dollars in damage to property and the environment. Some of the known perils of Dihydrogen Monoxide are: Death due to accidental inhalation of DHMO, even in small quantities.
Prolonged exposure to solid DHMO causes severe tissue damage.
Excessive ingestion produces a number of unpleasant though not typically life-threatening side-effects.
DHMO is a major component of acid rain.
Gaseous DHMO can cause severe burns.
Contributes to soil erosion.
Leads to corrosion and oxidation of many metals.
Contamination of electrical systems often causes short-circuits.
Exposure decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes.
Found in biopsies of pre-cancerous tumors and lesions.
Often associated with killer cyclones in the U.S. Midwest and elsewhere.
Thermal variations in DHMO are a suspected contributor to the El Nino weather effect.
Become informed Folks! You have unknown Dangers all around you.
But there IS a sinister plot to prevent these things from seeing the light of Day.
A City Counsel in a Western State, when they found out that DHMO was used in the manufacture of Styrofoam drinking cups, PLANNED to vote to ban the use of such items by City Employees but they NEVER VOTED on the Ban.
As a Courtesy to any of my readers for whom English is not their Native Language I wish to point out two things.
1) Dihydrogen MonOxide is the Chemical Compound commonly known as Water
2) All the facts above are absolutely true
Monday, 8 August 2005
Why and How I Started Blogging
Topic: Out of Flyover Land
A saw a cartoon once, a Man dressed in tails and a top hat was going over a ski ramp with a look of shock an bewilderment on his face. The caption read How did I get up HERE!?
Sometimes it's a good idea to stop, look around and ask that question.
Since I have noticed somebody is now reading my ramblings I thought I would take a few minutes and backtrack how I
I come from what you might call a "reading" family.
My Father loved books, as did my Mother, she read ravenously, poetry, novels and even read encyclopedias like some read paperbacks. I had a Great Aunt who had to leave school after the 3rd Grade to help in the fields, but Aunt Ruby learned to read
and she continued that practice her entire life, spending some 60 years of her adulthood reading and studying on her own philosophy and metaphysics. I remember, a prominent man in our community, very well educated, once told me, that my Aunt could hold her own, in his estimation, with any College Professor he had ever known.
The entire family were readers, but my nuclear family, was particularly known among the family as readers,it was a big one I am part Cherokee and my mother was the youngest of 14 in Kentucky we have CLANS not just families , :-) .
One of may Aunts once said half jokingly and half exasperatedly that a person could not bring up ANY subject, without one of the Kauffman's looking up and declaring, "I read a book once, that said---"
So when the Internet Arrived, and I discovered it, I dove in like a duck into water. Information, History, I could contact, correspond and exchange views with people from all over the world.
It was wonderful. I discovered, discussion boards, chat, then blogs. As I continued to read on the Internet, in particular blogs , I noticed something.
What I read in Newspapers, heard on TV, looked like what I was reading on blogs, but differed.
But with blogs, I often had links and sources, or I could use keywords and find original sources.
I discovered what I read in Newspapers, heard on TV was NOT the same as I found in original
sources, it had been changed
, altered, subtly at times, but in a way, that often the meaning
was not only distorted, but turned into the complete opposite of what had been said.
There is a perfect example of this process on theRight Wing News
website. It is a quote in Fahrenheit 9/11 of Condi Rice. I will first give you Michael Moore's version, then I will give you the full quote, with his version highlighted in it. You can see and decide for yourself who the Liar is.
Condi Rice-altered quote
"There is a tie between Iraq and what happened on 9/11"
Condi Rice-full text quote
"Oh, indeed there is a tie between Iraq and what happened on 9/11.
It’s not that Saddam Hussein was somehow himself and his regime involved in 9/11, but, if you think about what caused 9/11, it is the rise of ideologies of hatred that lead people to drive airplanes into buildings in New York."
You see the first quote contains the exact words she said, nothing added, noting moved around, just quite a bit left out. Makes a big difference doesn't it?
I don't like holes
in my information and news, I like to read the complete
Blogs allow me that. Oh it's true that some are biased and they too can slant things, but like Ed Morrisey's statement on the header of Captain's Quarters says, "Thus Every Blogger In His Kind, Is Bit By Him Who Comes Behind", you play too fast and loose and you WILL get called on it. The Blogsphere has some highly effective negative feedback mechanisms for those who distort the truth.
I started REALLY reading , as I read I would think, "I sure would like to try my hand at this, but with work and READING other blogs, I just don't have the time." Then one day I noticed something.
I was not only reading blogs, I was doing a fair bit of commenting
on blogs, just on other people's Blogs.
I think it was when I did a google search and discovered that no one was really using the Title
Committees Of Correspondence
that I made my mind up.
I started this Free Angelfire Blog, but I also purchased/leased the domain committeesofcorrespondence.com, when I get a better handle on how to do all this stuff I will transition to it, for as I wrote on the holding page there, it is my Belief that the Blogs are the
Committees Of Correspondence of the 21st Century.
I also believe we are today, at a Cusp in History, quite like the Founding Fathers of the American Revolution found themselves.
Only this time the Conflict between the Forces of Totalitarian Control and the Forces of Freedom and Liberty are engaged in a struggle that is GLOBAL in nature.
We face the same opponent, the same detractors, these word of Patrick Henry are as true today as they were then
It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace-- but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!
People of the World I tell you this, Our brethren are already in the field!
on the order of 5 to 10 million lay dead, slaughtered at the hands of the Jihadists, on the order of 50 million or more are displaced, driven from their homes by the Jihadists.Why stand we here idle?
Listen! Through the Fog of War can you not hear the Trumpet Calling? Can you not hear the Sound of the Guns and through the Fog, can you not see the Emblem waving at the front of those advancing?
What is that Emblem? It holds the Battle Cry uttered by Gen. John Stark over 200 hundred years ago!
"Live free or die,"
But those are not just Americans, falling to keep the Ensign untarnished they are a host of Nations. In the Coallition of the Willing and even Iraqis, Afghanistanis,and Iranians, not Allied but still dieing because they wish to be FREE.
Sunday, 7 August 2005
Many Thanks Captain!
Topic: Out of Flyover Land
Welcome Captain's Quarter's Readers.
If you have come here wondering what the Inspiration I provided was and are puzzled because you cannot find any posts referring to Matha Stewart?
It's because the Captain is referring to a comment I left on his site in.Air America: Spitzer's Difference"Holding the powerful accountable -- that sounds like what the media claims as its mission. The New York Sun and the New York Post do that, but the Paper of Record makes that mission conditional on whose power is in question."
Martha Stewart sold 4000 shares of stock for a bit under a 250,000. She was never convicted of Insider Trading she went to Prison for uttering a false statement to a Federal Agent,
You know that's peanuts compared to what Err America was up to and still is I might add
Posted by: Dan Kauffman at August 7, 2005 12:23 AM
But while my 15 seconds of glory lasts, if you look at anything here at all let me suggests browsing.MoveOn Memes
Which holds my thoughts of how the labels we places on events models ur perceptions, those of others, and why we should stop using the labels of the Past.
Also a VERY welcome announcement to the Blogvers,The Religious Policeman
A Saudi Arabian Blogger who has been absent for over a year is back! Living in England it seems where it is safer to blog frankly.
So once again thanks to a real gentleman and on of my Daily Reads, my First Read to tell the truth with my first (drinking it now ) cup of coffee.
Then why are you posting this so late in the day, Dan?
I woke nights and sleep days, What a nice surprise I woke to.
I now R a Slimy Mollusc! LOLUPDATE
And a VERY Hearty welcome to readers fromJaneane Garofalo for the rest of us
Tex the Pontificator
and last but of course not least
WINDS OF CHANGE
Saturday, 6 August 2005
Hiroshima, The Bomb, And Revisionist History
Topic: Out of Flyover Land
As I was reading the post in Weekend Pundit
for August 6
whose title I have "borrowed", I found myself nodding my head, yes, truth, yes.There has been a long running debate about the message the Japanese government sent to the US and their allies after the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. Some believe that it was a poor translation of the message that led to the dropping of the second bomb on Nagasaki. But Rhodes brings up the point that even after the bombing of Nagasaki, the Japanese military had no intention of surrendering. This was confirmed by communications intercepts between the high command and lower level units. They had been preparing the Home Islands for an invasion, working to convert every Japanese civilian into kamikaze troops. But the Emperor intervened, something highly unusual. He ordered the military to surrender, knowing that if they did not submit Japan and its people were doomed.
If we had not dropped the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and had instead invaded the Home Islands, the death toll would have been in the many millions, with Allied troop deaths calculated as between 500,000 and 1,000,000 men. Millions of Japanese would be dead rather than a couple of hundred thousand from the two atomic bombs.
But none of that is relevant to the revisionists. All they know is that we were wrong to drop the bombs. Never mind that we could have just as easily fire-bombed those cities instead with the death toll no different. The firebombing of Tokyo on the night of March 9, 1945, almost 5 months before Hiroshima, killed 150,000 Japanese in the city. That's more than died in Hiroshima. But we don't revise the history of that bombing raid, do we?
My own thoughts exactly and in some part prompted by the History of the Invasion of Saipan. I recall the first time I read accounts of that Battle. I was stunned
. I looked at the pages of the book and my mind leaped to what would have been the near Future for the men whose stories I was reading and I thought. No WONDER Truman chose to Drop the Bomb.
I left a comment on this on Weekend Pundit, here I will repeat and expound upon it."Millions of Japanese would be dead rather than a couple of hundred thousand from the two atomic bomb"
Those who doubt this have never studied the record of the Invasion of Saipan.
Due to the effects of propaganda by the Japanese Government, the Civilian Population and the Common Japanese were convinced, that they would be subjected to horrific, torturous, annihilation.
The Japanese Army, fought a mistaken, but what can only be described considering what they believed, heroic last ditch stand to buy time while many women and children jumped off the cliffs to their deaths,
An invasion of the Japanese Home Islands, had it followed the Saipan model, could have resulted in the Extinction of the Japanese as a Nation.
Consider the Horror the Peace Party faced, neither the Nation, nor the military would be deterred by massive death and destruction, for the Fire Bombing of Tokyo alone had resulted in far more devastation.
It was the fact that THIS destruction, was accomplished by the means of only two bombs that gave them the Courage to gain access to the Emperor, inform him of the Reality they faced, and get his Imperial Decree out to the People to Surrender without Resistance.
Nations have been defeated and Survived, Nations have been defeated and ceased to exist as Nations and their People have survived.
What they faced was neither of the above, but the almost certainty that the Japanese Race would cease to Exist.
One wonders what the Revisionist History of an alternate Timeline, where the Atomic Bombs were never dropped, would be.
Might the "Suicide of the Japanese People" have evolved into "The Senseless Slaughter of the Japanese??"
Might Future Historians in that Alternate History have claimed.
"Truman had it in his hands to drop the two devices in his possession, and shock the Japanese into surrender, but he chose not to, in order to ensure the Complete Destruction of the Japanese as People"?????
The Religious Policeman
Topic: Islamic Jihad
After an absence of about a Year!
I was going through my bookmarks and adding some of my favorite blogs to a blogroll and came to him and thought, it doesn't matter that he has taken a long leave of absence, the perspective of a man living in Saudi Arabia is VALUABLE.
Then when I went to his site to add him I discovered he had returned?
Here I am, back again, just like the proverbial bad coin.
Why? Well, in the last 12 months, events took me to the United Kingdom, where I was once schooled, and where I now work. I am much freer to post in safety, but it wouldn't have been very smart to do so the day after I arrived, so I've only just started up now. I will be returning to the Magic Kingdom from time to time, and so there will be gaps in my posting, which may or may not coincide with these intervals, just in case our heroic security forces are keeping track. As there are several thousand of us working here at any one time, and several hundred arriving or leaving each year, I am satisfied enough that I can maintain my anonymity.
I thought I'd got away from terrorist attacks but obviously that was a mistake. As someone with an obvious Asian appearance I feel a bit wary but that's not surprising. I think the British are starting to wake up to the "dark side" of Islam that we see so much in Saudi Arabia but is something new to them over here. Life as a moderate Muslim is getting increasingly difficult. Perhaps I should become a Christian, but where I come from they call that Apostasy and you get your head chopped off for it.
Thanks for all the comments in the meantime, which I'm always interested to read.
Friday, 5 August 2005
The Women of the WORLD Need US!
Topic: Islamic Jihad
Wow talk about Synchronicity.
When I read in
The Women of Iraq Need Us
The women of Iraq need our help now more than ever, as the Iraq Constitution is being drafted. It’s no secret that the state of women’s rights in the Arab/Muslim world is abysmal, but there is an historic opportunity now to begin setting things right by making sure the Iraq Constitution does not incorporate the repressive 12th century code of shari’a. The Middle Ground is fighting to get these issues noticed.
I almost wished I had named my earlier post yesterday
"The Women of Iran Need Us" instead of Submission
THEN the post I was planning to write about
Ayaan Hirsi Ali Could have been named
"The Women of Holland and Somalia, Need Us"
Quite some time ago before 9/11
I was aware
that someone could write
"The Women of Afghanistan Need Us"
I got that Idea from the
Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA)
RAWA's martyred founder
If you are freedom-loving and anti-fundamentalist, you are with RAWA. Support and help us
I am also aware and have been for some time we could write.
"The Women in Malaysia Need Us"
From the Website of Sisters in Islam we read about their dismay
at the thought of Strict Shar'ai being imposed upon them instead of Secular Law.
Hudud in Terengganu - A Law to Protect Rapist
9 May 2002
The Hudud Bill drafted by the Terengganu state government
constitutes a gross violation of the principles of justice and equality in Islam.
For those of the opinion that Iraq, Afghanistan,Malaysia,Somalia, and Iran
are far away and none of our busines,
let me point out these issues now
hit VERY close to home.
"The Women of CANADA Need Us"
Islamic group against Ontario use of sharia law
A Canadian Islamic group is trying to prevent the word shariah from being included in Ontario's Arbitration Act on the grounds it creates a "slippery slope" that blurs dangerously the lines between family and criminal law.
Currently, the law provides for voluntary faith-based arbitration, which allows Muslims, Jews and members of other faiths to use the guiding principles of their religion in settling private disputes such as divorce, custody issues and inheritances outside the court system.
But the Council on American-Islamic Relations Canada is worried that including the word shariah in the legislation would enshrine in law so-called shariah tribunals, which they say are a violation of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Critics of sharia tribunals say they permit Islamic jurisprudence to swell beyond the scope of family law, potentially exposing vulnerable groups, particularly women, to unjust treatment in the eyes of the Charter.
"They say women will be coerced and pressured and will be oppressed," said CAIR-CAN director Riad Saloojee.
"The differential treatment under Islamic law in certain circumstances will basically affect equality rights."
In addition to the Qur'an, shariah is based on the Hadith, a complementary collection of sayings, and the Sunnah, which are practices of Islam's founder, the Prophet Muhammad.
The scope of a traditional shariah tribunal is extensive and includes a canon of criminal law which, for the most part, is incompatible with the Charter, Saloojee said. The debate has polarized Canada's Muslim community, he added.
"There is enough by way of controversy in the Muslim house to make it interesting."
While CAIR-CAN supports faith-based arbitration as an alternative to litigation, Saloojee and others say safeguards are necessary to ensure that vulnerable groups, especially women, are not "coerced" into using the practice.
Ontario's Arbitration Act is mainly used for commercial arbitrations, where the parties are typically represented by lawyers who can protect their rights.
Those who want to take advantage of faith-based arbitration are typically less sophisticated and don't enjoy the same protection, Saloojee said.
"Many people feel very comfortable resolving their issues on faith-based principles," he said.
"If you were to give many (Muslims) a choice of resolving them in the legal system or resolving them quietly, quickly and according to faith-based principles they already believe in, and tend to expedite the process, they will do that."
Moderate Muslim cleric Ahmad Kutty, one of two Canadian imams who made headlines a year ago when they were kicked out of the U.S. on suspicions of terrorism, said he supports leaving shariah out of the act.
"Shariah is a loaded word; it includes all of the civil, criminal and other institutions associated with the Islamic legal system," Kutty said. "No one in his right mind would propose implementing this system of laws in Canada."
But Kutty said he still supports the concept of faith-based arbitration, so long as "sufficient safeguards and checks and balances" are in place to protect the rights of "those who are often vulnerable to exploitation."
Saloojee said the use of faith-based arbitration is on the rise for Canada's burgeoning Muslim community.
Islam is Canada's fastest growing religion, with 579,640 Muslims enumerated in the 2001 census, more than twice the number in 1991.
Some 61 per cent, or 352,500, live in Ontario.
As a result, the province has asked former attorney general Marion Boyd to conduct a review of the province's arbitration processes.
She is expected to deliver her recommendations in September, but said she has yet to decide whether to recommend using the word shariah to describe faith-based arbitration for Muslims.
"I haven't made up my mind yet," Boyd said. "I can tell you that CAIR-CAN is not the only group that has suggested that it is inappropriate to call this shariah."
Other groups, like the Institute of Islamic Law in Canada, have expressed support for the term shariah, Boyd said. The institute could not be reached for comment.
Cross Reference - Islamic Law in Canada
(Note the following will be active links on the website above)
Politicians in Quebec Urge Against Shari?ah Law (Canada)
Shari?ah Law Proposal Supported by B?nai B?rith, Sparking Ire of Islamic and Jewish Feminists (Canada)
Ontario Muslims Should Be Allowed to Use Shari'ah Law for Civil Disputes, Report Says (Canada)
CAIR-Canada Says Use of "Sharia" Law Creates "Slippery Slope," Muslims Divided Over Issue (Canada)
Concerns Continue Over Oppression of Women in Islamic Law Courts (Canada)
Islamic Law Courts Test Boundaries of Tolerance in Canadian Society (Canada)
Ontario Government to Review Plans for Use of Shari'a Law (Canada)
Women Speak Out Against Approval of Shari'a Law Tribunals (Canada)
Group Fights Islamic Law in Canada, Citing Infringment of Women's Rights (Canada)
Law Provision Allows for Use of Islamic Law Courts to Settle Civil Disputes (Canada)
Opinion: Islamic Tribunals Would Decrease Burden on Judicial System and Save Tax Dollars (Canada)
Canadian Muslims Able to Use Shari'a Law in Civil Disputes (Canada)
Editorial: All Canadians Should Abide By Same Laws (Canada)
Muslim Leaders Elect Council to Establish Shari'a Judicial Court (Canada)
First They Came for the Jews
First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.
Pastor Martin Niemoller
they come for Muslim Women
are you going to
Or just wait for them to come for
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