"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours." -Sir Charles Napier
BigEarth of New Mexico sez, The warmest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of great national moment, reserve their neutrality.
Bill Whittle's mom sez, If you can’t say anything of deep and meaningful scientific or political import that is not supported by fact, reason, historical precedent and in-depth step-by-step logical analysis then don’t say anything at all!
I snorted at this article last night: "Reporter Arnett: U.S. War Plan Has Failed" Having never forgotten Peter Arnett's involvement in a fake story about the US military gassing deserters in Vietnam, or his explantion that he just reported what was handed to him, I already knew his report would be not believable. This time, however, he can escape blame for a false report by offering this as his view or analysis. Is it any wonder that Arnett is not actually an NBC reporter this time as he reports this war for MSNBC?
At the time, in 1998, CNN was in the middle of being routinely called the Clinton News Network. After the falseness of the "Operation Tailwind" story was exposed, and amid comparisons to ABC for its demonizing Food Lion report, CNN realized that Al-Jazeera, just two years old at the time, was close to surpassing CNN in credibility. CNN apologized in such a way that even the conservative writers were generally pleased.
Which of the following is not an oxymoron?:
a. Pulitzer prize winner Peter Arnett
b. Pultizer Prize winner Janet Cooke
c. Nobel Peace Prize winner Jimmy Carter
d. Nobel Peace Prize winner Yasser Arafat
e. Justice Souter
f. Justice Breyer
If your answer was "none", tell me why and I'll buy you a beer!
:::::::::UPDATE - FIRED ! But you probably knew that by now already. That first article confused me.
:::::::::UPDATE - HIRED ! HA ! By the Daily Mirror HA !
He still blows:
'I report the truth of what is happening here in Baghdad and will not apologize for it...' writes Arnett in his first scribble on his new job.
Funny, I recall him apologizing earlier today, calling it a "stupid misjudgement," and I thought he would wait the usual 4-5 years before lying again. Anyone know if Al-Jazeera offered him a job as well?
So we have seen our first suicide bombing in the war. Odd, but I forgot to anticipate this. If Iraq is a secular state, then what is the reward for this? Would anyone in a victorious Iraq even remember his name?
If the bomber thought that in spite of Iraq's secular nature this would still please Allah, to kill infidels on the soil of Northern Iraq, then how does a devout Muslim balance the cult of personality, the outright idolatry, of Saddam Hussein? After all, with his photo in every room, every possible public space made an alter with an image of the despot, and his becoming Nebuchadnezzar in rebuilding the Hanging Gardens, I fail to understand the failure of Islamic leadership to comdemn this as idolatry and blasphemy.
Add to that the Mother of All Battles Mosque, representing the religion of peace with minarets designed after Kalashnikov rifle barrels, showcasing the Qu'ran written in Saddam's blood, and a pool in the shape of the whole Arab world with an image (idol) rising from its center bearing the image of Saddam's thumbprint.
In the meantime, ordinary people embrace this religion, many of which only end up surrendering their dignity by cheering on the suicide bombers and aspiring to be one. Their leaders seem to know better, they actually seem to know this religion is more a tool for Arab conquest than it ever was a faith. Just as Islam exploits human nature, its leaders exploit Islam's ordinary followers.
Jesse Jackson, in a spotlight grab reminiscent of Bill Clinton's after Bush became President, had martinis yesterday with UN Sec-Gen Kofi Annan and declared what needs to be done in Iraq:
"Perhaps there could be the Olympic Truce, where at least both sides agree to stop the shooting to allow food and medicine to get in and water can be turned back on," Jackson said.
News Flash, Reverend, the water that was turned off by the Iraqis was turned back on. And we are not going to hit the water supply.. why do you think that's where the human shields chose to camp out? What did you think they were throwing to Iraqi civilians out of the backs of those trucks? And do you think the Iraqi Republican Guard is going to stand there and let the civilians take the food and medicine we send them?
What doesn't belong?
*Iraqi soldiers are giving children guns and telling them to shoot US Marines.
*The Republican Guard are taking houses and setting up their anti-aircraft weapons systems in them.
*Iraqi soldiers are donning civilian clothes.
*Iraqi soldiers are waving white flags and then ambushing our troops.
*Iraqi soldiers are willing to cease-fire, lay down their weapons, and allow food and medicine to go through to the civilians, because deep down inside, there is good in everybody.
Most auspiciously, the Arab League has appealed to the United Nations Security Council to stop the war. One can only hope the Security Council will agree to intervene. How would they stop us? Would France threaten us with war? Young men across America would have to enlist as a matter of honor. The Army could use as its recruiting slogan: "Are you afraid to fight the French?" Even liberals would enlist as a way to pick up glorious service with no risk of injury.
James Taranto writes:
Saddam's friends are crowing. South Africa's SA news agency quotes weapons inspector turned Saddam apologist Scott Ritter, speaking in Lisbon: "Every time we confront Iraqi troops we may win some tactical battles, as we did for ten years in Vietnam, but we will not be able to win this war, which in my opinion is already lost." Yeah, and that girl is already 18.
I laughed out loud last night at a headline that read, "Al-Jazeera Calls on U.S. to Ensure Free Press." HA! While I do not understand why exactly The New York Stock Exchange kicked two of their reporters out, I really don't know what good they could do in there. What exactly do you report about the American financial markets to one of the two poorest places in the world?
Now that brings in the subject of Muslim rage, the focus of a documentary by Thomas Friedman which aired on the Discovery Channel last night. While interviewing teenage students at a surprisingly modern school (girls with uncovered hair) in Qatar, a 16 year-old boy spoke up and said his anger at we Americans is for thinking our blood is expensive and Arab blood is cheap. I have to admit I was very impressed with that remark. While I think the kid has been misled, that remark still beat the hell out of saying that Israel controls the Senate.
The problem with Islam, as I have already posted, is that it exploits human nature, meaning pride. Friedman reminded me that Islam's followers entertain a self-perception that their way, Islam, is the purest of the three great monotheistic faiths. This combination of pride and self-perception has irrefutably demonstrated its deadliness. (Please don't invoke the Crusades.)
And it's not just America's blood that is expensive, but everything we have is expensive. Add to that the perception that we look down our nose at them (guilty) and then add that to their self-perception. Pride is an awful enemy. It's no wonder they have all that rage.
Now contrast that with the rage of our demonstrators, who with increasing lawlessness protest what they call the lawlessness of our President. Taking advantage of the freedom to protest is not enough for them because the rest of us have the freedom to ignore them. Instead of facing the nonsense of being gay and marching for Palestine, where gays face death, or of being feminist and marching to keep the status quo where women are chattel, they will shut down a city of hard working people to force them to listen.
There is a lot to be said about being able to have faith in your leader. It didn't begin with Dick Cheney at the Republican Convention in 2000 saying to the military, "Help is on the way." It isn't because of the enormous contrasts between this President and the one before him (including Clinton's betrayal of US security by giving the Chinese access to our nuclear tecnology and Gore's lies about his own military service). It isn't just because of his Christian faith (think Jimmy Carter). It is a combination of things that are backed with reason but not entirely... I trust this leader we have. I know he has information we cannot see for a long time and I know he is acting on that while so much of the world continues to scream "no evidence!"
The deaths of our marines, in tens, this week got me down. The Mogadishu flashback got me way down. The sandstorm has had me worried about our troops just sitting there. While I laughed at the pink pickup with the mounted gun and and the shooting of the river in Baghdad on Sunday morning, it was still a clue that the people of Baghdad may strongly oppose what we are doing. But there we are.
On the other hand, surrendering Iraqis, even ones who shot their officers so they could be free, Iraqi parents running to the soldiers asking, "Where have you been?", people increasingly speaking out loud against Saddam Hussein, and Iraqi civilians even helping us as informants reflect the impressions I had all along: that they are waiting for us to free them. But the coverage of this by the media and the undue attention it continues to give to increasingly lawless anti-war demonstrators has me recalling the words of Gil Scott Heron:
The revolution will not be right back after a message about a white tornado, white lightning, or white people.
You will not have to worry about a dove in your bedroom, a tiger in your tank, or the giant in your toilet bowl.
The revolution will not go better with Coke.
The revolution will not fight the germs that may cause bad breath.
The revolution will put you in the driver's seat.
The revolution will not be televised, will not be televised, will not be televised, will not be televised.
The revolution will be no re-run brothers;
The revolution will be live.
THEY WENT TO FLIGHT SCHOOL... ARE THEY JOINING THE ARMY?
Yesterday Paul and I exchanged thoughts at Experimental Insanity about the US soldier accused of the grenade attack on our troops. He began by criticizing the media's initial word problems - its use of "terror" when reporting an act of war. I posted:
I must have tuned in just late enough to not hear the speculation of terrorism, but it doesn't surprise me that the media were asking that question. I don't think it is a double standard as much as another example of how they still aren't thinking when reporting the war any more than when the shuttle burned on re-entry.
On the other hand, when I first heard the report it was already known it was a US soldier - and I do not know if I am due some guilt here or not - but I correctly guessed the suspect's description, partly because of the DC sniper's description, and another incident the LA Times barely reported in 1996. Considering this suspect's description and (Muslim) educational background, terrorism might be worth a quick inquiry. We could still be surprised by what this investigation turns up.
They went to flight school... are they joining the Army?
Do you think any top brass are trying to figure out how to reassign the enlisted Muslims, black or not, out of this war zone? I would.
Now that we know it was a US soldier and not outside enemy forces it would make more sense to call it terrorism but the media has done the reverse.
From what I gather the army had already gotten bad vibes from this guy and were going to leave him behind when his unit moved to Iraq. I think the military has to stay on their toes and be on the lookout for any kind of inside job, sabotage. I don't think they should do a blanket reassignment of Muslims. It's racist, people should be seen as individuals first and Muslim second.
Paul is about the only person who could use that R word around me and keep my attention. He's right, but at the same time so am I. There is something about that religion that exploits human nature, and it is the reason I could correctly guess Asan Akbar's description when all I had was "US soldier." David Horowitz puts it in good words:
In fact, the culprit, Asan Akbar (aka Mark Fidel Kools) is a black Muslim from South Central Los Angeles, and a member of the Masjid Bilal Islamic Center there. What this incident would show us, if the press were doing its job, is that there is a connection between the ideas people devote themselves to and what they wind up doing.
Chris Regan at Junk Yard Blog has done his homework and posts a short, disturbing update related to this topic, and you should go there next.
This blog is for Tom in San Francisco, whose response to the protestors yelling beneath his window is blowing chili powder on them, a fairly successful technique tested earlier on loud drug addicts down below.
I watched 007 movies last night between TNN and F/X, and caught just enough of the Oscars to see Mickey Mouse announce a winner. That was enough. Thank God I didn't check in to see Michael Moore get the award for his self-righteous and not completely factual documentary (he grossly misrepresented the little Kayla story). I am surprised at the Academy for honoring a man to tried so hard to insult some of their own - not very academic, at least a lot of people gave him the booing he deserved. I also wondered why we can't have more James Bond movies like The Spy Who Loved Me. Today's 007 films tend to get too busy. And how about that white Lotus that was a part-time submarine? - that was my favorite Matchbox Car.
I also caught the last quarter of Armageddon on F/X, a movie almost as brain-damaged as Godzilla 2000, but it was worth it to watch the meteor strike Paris. Especially on the same day I read that Peace demonstrators in France stab 2 Jewish boys.
In the meantime, the score in Iraq is, according to Col. Mark Hildenbrand, something like "119 - 0". And our soldiers are encountering Iraqis who wonder what has taken them so long. I think it will have to be up to our soldiers to start taking down those ubiquitous portraits of Saddam since the people are still generally afraid to do so.
I hope the day comes when I can buy a couple of beers for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. He was super yesterday on Meet the Press, where I got a rare glimpse of Tim Russert stumbling, even in the same weekend that I swear I heard another Tom, Tom Brokaw, starting to cry.
ZIONISTS AGAINST ISRAEL
The Arab League is going to meet today to condemn Kuwait as a Zionist agent. Then what? declare war on Kuwait? Are they as suicidal as the Iraqi regime? We all know they aren't, but let me savor that for a moment....
This photo is unsurprising, but I was very impressed with the Iraqi soldiers who killed their officers so they might save themselves. They knew if they didn't fight, they would be executed, so they pre-empted their own executions by killing their would-be executioners. Tonight I will raise a glass to these men, who understand better than a lot of Americans why there is nothing quite like an armed populace to keep tyranny at bay.
Is anyone thinking about the Democrats' recent bid to re-instate the draft?
And in that photo at this morning's Drudge Report... is that Baghdad's city lights blazing at night during an air raid? Do the Iraqis have the idea that we are truly concentrating on military targets? Is it the valiant defense of the power plant by the human shields, or is it that the Iraqi people trust us enough that they are not killing the lights during a US air raid?
I wrote too soon about the good behavior of my city's protesters yesterday. While enjoying a sushi lunch, sake, the first day of spring, and an outdoor table about a block from the local peace rally, a peace-loving friend stopped by and asked, "Did you hear what happened yesterday? They arrested 21 people"
"Were they blocking traffic?" I asked. And guess what? I was right. "Charles, you can't do that. You can't block traffic. People are trying to get to work. A hip gets broken every day at the two downtown geriatric high-rise apartment buildings. The fire department is a block from the rally."
"But we need to be heard. Civil disobedience is necessary."
I had to make Charles understand that their message is already perfectly clear. Their voices are loud and their signs, even the misspelled ones, are very readable when written in standard 300-500 font.
These people, marching for "Jobs Not Bombs", need to think again about keeping people from doing their work by blocking traffic.
Here in Asheville we have a word we often use to describe our somewhat famous hippie population. A "trustafarian" is a fake poor person. One of those kids who comes from a good family, has a safety net, but entertains his alter ego by having contempt for anyone else who has more than he apparently does.
They are all protesting downtown, at the Vance monument, and behaving themselves except for not knowing what they are talking about. if you ask them about the torture chambers, the draining of the Iraqi wetlands, the monetary support of suicide bombers' families, the 39 scuds launched at Israel, the gassing of the Iranians, or even the Kalashnikov minarets at the Mosque of Saddam, you just get this glare that is a combination of rage and the dazed expression of a Special Olympian getting his medal, followed by the subsequent comment that your heart is obviously not beating.
Oh - a beating heart is important, isn't it? So what's with the sign, "Reproductive Rights Now! No War"? Now what exactly does that have to do with it? Abortion stops a beating heart, you know? You are campaigning to decrease your numbers, you dumbass. Good thing you have Ben Cohen's money.
Paul at Experimental Insanity offers another way of viewing some of these people. He posted this wonderful remark at my Rachel Corrie blog below:
The problem with people like her is they have Siding with the Underdog Syndrome. People afflicted with this syndrome will automatically and stupidly sympathize with what they perceive to be the underdog. This syndrome will defy the concept of good and evil, morality and intelligence and force the afflicted to side with the underdog no matter what the circumstances. In this situation, the afflicted girl with SWUS (siding with underdog syndrome) perceives the Palestinians as the underdog and Israelis as the top dog. At least she was put out of her misery.
William Pfaaf, writing in The Guardian UK, uses strange math, or thinks you are so dumb that he can lie to you with the contradicting facts right there in the same sentence.
And so we go to war, the United States, Britain and Australia - alone. George W Bush and Tony Blair see this as a Churchillian moment: alone?
I think China's opposition to this was ill-advised, not for choosing against doing right over wrong - Chinese communists clearly do not have such a phrase in all their Kanji, but because they are slightly admitting that they are too weak to win a war with a strong enemy. Does anyone think that China's opposition to this is based in a fear the the free world would view oppressed Taiwanese the same way we currently view the Iraqi people or the way we did the oppressed under the Taliban?
Let's go over the meaning of "alone" again, with an illustration from James Taranto:
Afghanistan, Albania, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Georgia, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and Uzbekistan
And Russia's oppostion makes sense. They knew that once conflict began, Saddam would fire his scuds, which as I write are landing in the sand in northern Kuwait or being shot down by our Patriot missiles. The Russians are too embarrassed to admit they built the damn things.
Last night, following the President's speech, former US Attorney General Janet Reno demonstrated the Democrat leadership's failure to understand human nature, as well as what disqualifies Democrats from leading, in a sentence. ''We will not solve the world's problems by might.''
It is interesting to me that someone so high-and-mighty in law enforcement would so consciously ignore that force is exactly what controls evil people who cannot be talked out of their ways. And was that not force at the Branch Davidian church camp? Nothing quite saves 22 children from child abuse like driving their keepers to self-destruction. But by her outlook last night, why didn't her agents simply arrest David Koresh on one of his routine trips to the grocery store?
Was that not force that took Elian Gonzales, bombed Belgrade, or destroyed the medicine factory in Khartoum?
And in further indication that she slept through the planning period of 9-11, as well as the day itself, she attempts to make up for losing her Florida governor bid by showing that she is more qualified to head Guantanamo-sensitive Amnesty International: ''Two citizens today are being held incommunicado in military brigs in this country, without being charged, without access to counsel, by the simple fact that the president has declared them what is called 'enemy combatants,''' Reno said, referring to ''dirty bomb'' suspect Jose Padilla and the Louisiana-born-Taliban Yasser Esam Hamdi.
We conservatives are sensitive to these headlines which describe SUV's as taking their own wheel and driving into people or buildings. The liberals are going to have fun with this: Israeli Bulldozer Kills U.S. Woman, 23
I wondered, just how did a bulldozer kill an American woman? Oh, she killed herself, by standing in its way. It was destroying the home of a suspected Palestinian militant.
She was a 23 year-old student from Olympia Washington, and an Evergreen College student. To clarify, that is the same Evergreen College that invited then-death row inmate and convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal to speak via videotape at the 1999 graduation ceremony. Is it any surprise that this school is producing people who think this way?
Even Otto in A Fish Called Wanda acknowledged that it was not the machine before he got steamrolled. "Look! It's K-K-K-K-KEN! C-C-Coming to k-k-k-k-kill me!
But if I must be reverent, at least this human shield actually stood in harm's way instead of complaining about the food and fleeing before harm came. Too bad this student wasn't from a school that doesn't glorify capital criminals. Too bad she chose to waste her life protecting them.
Joshua Wiznitzer posts at ISRAPUNDIT the headline, "Human shield to depart to Israel against Iraq," referring to a report that one hundred American college students are departing today to stand with Israel in defiance of Saddam Hussein. It's called "Operation Torah Shield."
There is a memorable moment in the current movie release, The Pianist, when the family is in the earlier stages of Nazi oppression and the father bewails the absence of obvious American Jewish support.
Well, they aren't asking where that support is now.
I have trouble calling them human shields, however. The idiots who went to Iraq have spoiled its meaning by pretending to stand in front of targets they know the US works very hard to avoid, while Operation Torah Shield will bravely stand with the specific targets of our enemy.
It just occurred to me. If the legs, torso, arms, shoulders, and even some of the neck are out, then it's not really partial. It's mostly.
It is mostly born abortion.
I wonder why the opponents didn't think of that. Or if it would have been a more effective name.
And the alarm is high. This on top of the recent Supreme Court ruling that RICO does not apply to abortion protesters has changed the topics of party conversation - get ready for the bombs and dead mothers.
This is where I need information: I fail to see how a partial-birth abortion could save the life of a mother. If a baby in the birth canal is a threat to her life, then why would a doctor take the added time to suck its brain out? why not simply force a premature birth, unless its death is the desired outcome at the same time life his hers?
And what is with the never-ending supply of vagina-centric art in coffee houses? It suggests, even if it is lesbian art, that the womb is something sacred, or at least special. Ya think? - unless the produce of that womb is the inconvenient result of a convenient decision.
And I love the "Bush is a Baby Killer!" anti-war protest sign. This from largely the same crowd that wails and quotes Ted Kennedy at pro-life court victories. The children! The children! The children! - Don't we have human shields for them?
In the meantime, we will continue to watch them protest the liberation of people in countries where women are treated like animals, where under theocratic (shariah) rule, men can divorce their wives with a phrase, but the wives must wait two years, or face death by stoning, because a wife of Mohammed was said to have carried a baby for that long.
This is easy for those of us with common sense.
"Don't we have human shields for them?" (above)
No, evidently, but we do have Xanax... recommended by your friendly flight attendant.
In spite of the above rant, I can understand his temptation.
On Sunday the NYT published Jimmy Carter's anti-war opinion, cleverly titled "Just War, or a Just War?" He begins with the obvious:
"Profound changes have been taking place in American foreign policy" Indeed they have, in the last decade we have gone from missile attacks on tents and medicine factories to delay impeachment hearings, to attacking regimes that sponsor terrorists. Foreign policy has gone from "Kiss my ass or I'll kick your head in" to "Stop sponsoring terror or I'll kick your head in."
"These commitments have been predicated on basic religious principles..." Democrats take note.
"As a Christian and as a president who was severely provoked by international crises, I became thoroughly familiar with the principles of a just war..." Too bad you didn't have the leadership skills to declare one. Iran would not have gone to the Russians for help. You simply let the Islamists know they could take our people for as long as they wanted until a leader took the White House.
..."substantially unilateral attack.." You forgot to say, "No blood for oil." as much as you forgot (left out) that a lot of countries are openly supporting us - or did you get Governor Douglas to write this for you?
"This is an almost universal conviction of religious leaders, with the most notable exception of a few spokesmen of the Southern Baptist Convention who are greatly influenced by their commitment to Israel.." Over half of liberal PCUSA clergy and elders surveyed approve of fighting to enforce treaty obligations. Iraq signed the 1971 torture treaty and the rest is obvious.
"Its violence must be proportional to the injury we have suffered. Despite Saddam Hussein's other serious crimes, American efforts to tie Iraq to the 9/11 terrorist attacks have been unconvincing." Very good, we wait to get hit and then we defend. 90-95% of liberal PCUSA clergy and elders now approve. Israel take note: you should have waited for Saddam to become nuclear ready before you hit Osirak, even if Iraq's other connections to terror (Salman Pak) have been convincing.
"...establish a Pax Americana in the region..."
Clever. But during the Pax Romana, they witnessed the spread of the Gospel.
.."it is quite possible that the aftermath... will... prompt terrorists to further jeopardize our security at home." Oh, so there is a terror link?
"The peace it establishes must be a clear improvement over what exists" News Flash, Mr. Carter, it doesn't exist there. You have been smoking too much Mandela.
"...in clear defiance of the United Nations..." United? They can't enforce their own resolutions and you refer to them as qualified to lead, like you do our 39th President.
Memo to Carter: Bobby Knight just returned his $250,000 paycheck because he felt his performance as coach this year was under par. Too bad you don't think of returning your peace prize, and for that matter, your Presidency. Bobby would sure as hell gotten our men out of Iran, or died trying.
Last night another one of those antiwar petition e-mails arrived from a friend. I am not sure exactly why they send these things to me, unless they wanted to see if I could be persuaded to change.
I love the reply-all button. Here's what you can do when you click it:
Dear Strangers and Friends,
About that "UN petition for peace", it is invalid. The signatures are being duplicated. Even if it were valid, I would still respectfully disagree, but it's not for a lack of doing my homework. Please consider two claims in the petition, "Islam is not the Enemy" and "War is NOT the Answer."
Do any of you know the penalty for missing a goal on the Iraqi soccer team? that Saddam's son Uday entertains himself by torturing the athletes? Did you know that in 1971 Iraq signed the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), agreeing that ''No one shall be subjected to torture."
Viewing The Pianist brought the following passage about the Holocaust from memory. From the state-controlled Egyptian daily, Al-Akhbar, 29 April 2002:
The entire matter, as many French and British scientists and researchers have proven, is nothing more than a huge Israeli plot aimed at extorting the German government in particular and the European countries in general. But I, personally and in light of this imaginary tale, complain to Hitler, even saying to him from the bottom of my heart, "If only you had done it, brother, if only it had really happened, so that the world could sigh in relief [without] their evil and sin."
Are you really concerned about human rights? or do you really think you will change them with your bumper stickers? Read "'Death threat' to Palestinian gays" and let me know.
Did anyone else notice that the first 23 signatures on that petition are from France? Click for this photo of current French president Chirac with Saddam Hussein at the Osirak nuclear reactor in 1975, six years before Israel destroyed it. At the time of this photo, the French were handing Iraq its needed nuclear ingredients on a plate.
(Surah 4, v. 34) Men are the maintainers of women because Allah has made some of them to excel others and because they spend out of their property; the good women are therefore obedient, guarding the unseen as Allah has guarded; and (as to) those on whose part you fear desertion, admonish them, and leave them alone in the sleeping-places and beat them; then if they obey you, do not seek a way against them; surely Allah is High, Great. (Surah 9, v. 5)
But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.
(Surah 9, v. 29)
Fight against such of those who have been given the Scripture as believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, and forbid not that which Allah hath forbidden by His messenger, and follow not the Religion of Truth, until they pay the tribute readily, being brought low.
(Surah 98, v. 6)
Lo! those who disbelieve, among the People of the Scripture and the idolaters, will abide in fire of hell. They are the worst of created beings.
Maybe the people of the Scripture, the ones known as Iraqi Jews, can look forward to seeing their homes again after this war is waged.
Gee, we missed our chance to see Dennis Prager proved wrong and those who opposed war in Afghanistan proved right. It took a long time for the United States to evolve enough to secure suffrage rights for women and blacks. It took 90 years for slavery to end. Imagine a Taliban-controlled Afghanistan just a century from now. Women might actually be exposing their ankles by then.
Just as men and women guided by the New Testament were shaping a free nation and securing freedoms, imagine men under the guidance of Allah the merciful, the compassionate, following an Afghan Ninth Circuit's advise to not pray for victory before slinging the dead calf in a game of buzkashi.
Bill Clinton has a one million dollar gig with CBS. I thought that was reasonable because I thought it was a one year contract. No, it is for ten weeks, once a week, for 45 + 15 seconds each week. This brilliant deal from the network whose Dan Rather gets chosen by neo-Stalinist Saddam Hussein for an interview.
He and Bob Dole will debate.
"I see this as an opportunity to try to have a really civil debate that enlightens people on the issues," Clinton told The New York Times.
So speeches for money aside, Clinton's first job in the private sector has him booked for about an hour a week, two if Christophe is still doing his hair.
Listen as Bob Dole exercises his manners in referring to Clinton as Mr. President. We will likely see civility from Clinton as well. Before the taping of the debates, statements will already be prepared. We won't get to see any classic Clinton blowups resulting from surprise questions from gutsy reporters.
The word implies new writing over old, rewriting history, evolution, or simply changing one's mind. It is actually a parchment or paper where writing has been erased and new text has been written in its place. It was what I wanted for a title for this blog, to imply that with enough discussion, I could change my mind about things. "Intelligent people do that," said George Will in a televised discussion about President Bush changing a policy.
However, Gore Vidal published memoirs a few years ago with that title, and since I aimed to start online discussion, "Prolegomena" got to be the title, with a sub-title of "Gore Vidal already took Palimpsest".
That second header got promptly erased as I learned of Vidal's odd hatred of the Bush Administration, calling it a "junta", and his name at the top of my blog got to be an embarrassment. Hence, my blog lived up to its original intended name and became a palimpsest.
Vidal has not stopped. His recent prediction that we will lose the war with Iraq has left me with no choice but to permanently place him in the Mandela File, a sub-file of Number 13.
There is a permanent record of the old page in a cache at Google. Now what would Google charge to be a palimpsest as well?
Two nights ago A&E broadcasted a documentary about Saddam Hussein. It brought to memory some old reading by Samir al-Khalil in his pre-Kuwait book, Republic of Fear, including a section about the climate Saddam created in his early days with Vishinsky-like show trials and his obsession with creating enemies.
While there is worry about the decline of our civilization evidenced by the viewership of MTV and "Joe Millionaire," I have been saying for some time that hope is in the success of the Learning, Discovery, and History Channels, plus people in bookstores after ten o'clock at night.
Doug M., from the Learning Channel category of TV viewers, contributes PROLEGOMENA's first guest blog:
Last night I happened to catch the biography of Saddam Hussein on A&E's "Biography." It was absolutely fascinating! I sure hope some of the peace protestors caught it as well and also pray that it opened their eyes to the true evil of the man.
One of the most interesting things I learned was that he has been involved (actually did the killing) in two assassinations of former Iraqi leaders. After the first, his cousin came to power and Saddam was the iron fist behind the throne (the real power). When that government was overthrone, Saddam went into exile. While in exile, he studied Hitler and Stalin. From Hitler, he learned that he first has to create an emotional bond with the people of the country. Like Hitler, Saddam built roads and created infrastructure where there was none before. That created the emotional bond that he needed to be excused for what was to come next.
Another thing he learned from Hitler is that people who are looking for peace are willing to give you the benefit of the doubt regardless of your past history. Hitler made Chamberlain look like a total buffoon on the world stage by signing whatever Chamberlain placed in front of him, then proceeded to launch the 'Blitzkrieg' on relatively defenseless countries like Poland. Saddam did the exact same thing right before he invaded Iran and Kuwait on separate occasions.
From Stalin, he learned that you only trust yourself, and you have to eliminate anyone that you believe is less than 100% loyal to you. During the show, it was estimated that Saddam Hussein has ordered the execution of more than 12,000 people for 'treason.' At one point, he even imprisoned his own son, Uday, and personally broke Uday's arm while he was already in a hospital bed for other injuries.
One of the things the show glanced over is the fact that Iraq's oil production, which is still quite strong, is nationalized, which of course means that the moeny goes directly into Saddam's pocket. The narrator did say, however, that hundreds of thousands of Iraqi's are dying annually of STARVATION while hundreds of millions of dollars are being spent on palaces and are going into personal bank accounts for Saddam.
Saddam was quoted as saying that Israel must be eliminated, and that was one of the main reasons he began his nuclear, biological and chemical weapons programs. The show documented the stockpiles of weapons that he had in the mid-90's when inspectors were in Iraq.
It was suggested that he was strapped for cash. With so many well-funded terrorist organizations in this world, is it really that hard to 'connect the dots' as so many peace-niks say we cannot? It just scares me to death to think that there are so many people out there who have no idea what kind of person Saddam Hussein is. They are probably the same people who think that prison is for 'rehabilitation.' Every time that he does something without consequence he is emboldened even more.
He will say anything and everything the peace, love, harmony crowd wants to hear, because he knows it's all about how it makes them feel about themselves that's important to them. I don't want war, but I don't want the problems that are destined for our shores to come home to roost, either. We have a military to fight and win wars in the cause of freedom. Use it! If murderous tyrants like Saddam Hussein are allowed to wield power, then God help us all, because that power will be unleashed on us at a time and in a place that is of his choosing, not ours. - Doug M.