Sunday, October 31, 2004

Osama Threat more Sinister

In typical herd mentality of the Main Stream Media, we find that it looks like they got it wrong once again.

According to The Middle East Media Research Institute, the MSM has run with a faulty interpretation of Osama bin Laden's most recent video that may prove it to be much more sinister than originally thought.

The tape of Osama bin Laden that was aired on Al-Jazeera(1) on Friday, October 29th included a specific threat to "each U.S. state," designed to influence the outcome of the upcoming election against George W. Bush. The U.S. media in general mistranslated the words "ay wilaya" (which means "each U.S. state")(2) to mean a "country" or "nation" other than the U.S., while in fact the threat was directed specifically at each individual U.S. state. This suggests some knowledge by bin Laden of the U.S. electoral college system. In a section of his speech in which he harshly criticized George W. Bush, bin Laden stated: "Any U.S. state that does not toy with our security automatically guarantees its own security."


So, for any state that bows down to Al-Qaida and turns blue November 2, Osama and company promises to remove it from its hit list. For those states that have the courage to vote for President Bush and face down terrorism, Osama promises retribution.

In this obvious attempt to divide the United States between state and party lines, we are left with one question...

Do we as a nation stand together against terrorism, or do we stand divided?

Saturday, October 30, 2004


What's that on his shirt? Posted by Hello

Terms of Surrender

Osama Bin Laden has laid out his terms for an American Surrender.

First he explains his reasons for the war against America.

But we fought you because we are free people, we don't sleep on our oppression. We want to regain the freedom of our Muslim nation as you spill our security, we spill your security.

In other words, there are those of us who seek to establish a Pan-Arabic nation in the model of Wahabism, similar to, and more powerful than the Taliban. Where we are free to oppress those who do not share our views, and are free to oppress our women who are similarly inferior to Arab men.

But after we were so fed up, and we saw the oppression of the American Israeli oalition on our people in Palestine and Lebanon, it came to my mind, and the incidents that really touched me directly goes back to 1982 and the following incidents. When the U.S. permitted the Israelis to invade Lebanon with the assistance of the 6th fleet.

Because you supported your ally, Israel, in its fight against the indiscriminate killing perpertrated by our Palestinian brothers (who by the way we kicked out of Jordan into Lebanon), we set our minds against you.

Next he meanders into a rehash of Fahrenheit 9/11.

We didn't find difficulty dealing with Bush and his administration due to the imilarity of his regime and the regimes in our countries. Which half of them are ruled by military and the other half by sons of kings and presidents and our experience with them is long.

Both parties are arrogant and stubborn and the greediness and taking money without right and that similarity appeared during the visits of Bush to the region while people from our side were impressed by the U.S. and hoped that these visits
would influence our countries.

Here he is being influenced by these regimes, royal and military. And was feeling jealous they were staying for decades in power stealing the nations' finances without anybody overseeing them. So he transferred the oppression of freedom and tyranny to his son, and they call it the Patriot Law to fight terrorism. He was bright in putting his sons as governors in states, and he didn't forget to transfer his experience from the rulers of our region to Florida to falsify elections to benefit from it in critical times.


George H. W. Bush came over and kicked Saddam's ass and we thought it might make our job easier in bringing down the other rulers in our region, but that didn't happen. Instead, he helped his sons get elected as governors and moved the Democratic Party closer to our distorted world view. So, now we are appealing to Michael Moore and the Democratic Party to continue our fight against America by spreading our version of the truth.

And finally, he lays down his terms for an American Surrender.

He should tell us why we didn't hit Sweden for instance.

Your security is not in the hands of Kerry or Bush or al-Qaida. Your security is in your hands. Each state that doesn't mess with our security has automatically secured their security.


Look at the mighty world leader nation of Sweden. You would do well to emulate their role in world politics. Leave us alone to destroy the nation of Israel and establish Taliban like rule over the portion of the world that holds such sway over your national economy. Allow us to determine who we want to receive oil and who shouldn't. And we promise to never ever attack your country again. No... really... Cross my heart and hope to die.

The choice is ours... do we accept Osama's terms of Surrender?

Friday, October 29, 2004

Great Minds Think Alike


It never occurred to us that the commander in chief of the American forces would leave 50,000 citizens in the two towers to face those horrors alone at a time when they most needed him because he thought listening to a child discussing her goat and its ramming was more important than the planes and their ramming of the skyscrapers. This gave us three times the time needed to carry out the operations, thanks be to God. . . .




When the plane hit the first World Trade Center tower a lot of people thought it was an accident. People didn't automatically think terrorism. But if you're the president of the United States, wouldn't your mind immediately go, Hmm, a plane has run into the only building in America ever attacked by foreigners in an act of terrorism. This could well be another attack. Maybe I had better get on this. Bush didn't. He continued to sit for another 10 minutes reading My Pet Goat to the kids in some classroom before he and his people decided this was an attack.




Had I been reading to children and had my top aide whisper in my ear that America is under attack, I would have told those kids very nicely and politely that the president of the United States has something that he needs to attend to.

Oops... except...

I was in the Capitol. We'd just had a meeting -- we'd just come into a leadership meeting in Tom Daschle's office, looking out at the Capitol. And as I came in, Barbara Boxer and Harry Reid were standing there, and we watched the second plane come in to the building. And we shortly thereafter sat down at the table and then we just realized nobody could think, and then boom, right behind us, we saw the cloud of explosion at the Pentagon. And then word came from the White House, they were evacuating, and we were to evacuate, and so we immediately began the evacuation.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Democratic Consultant: "If Bush Wins, We Will Make This Country Ungovernable By Christmas"

Ungovernable, indeed.

But the real news was Fund's report of a conversation he had with a Democratic consultant, whose name, he said, we'd all know. He didn't say the guy's name, but he said he had spoken to him in the green room during the taping of a recent show.

Fund asked what he thought of the election, and this man said, "Off the record, I think Kerry just might lose." But he then continued (paraphrased): "That doesn't mean it's over, though. Democrats will protest and fight so strongly that Bush won't have a win even if he wins. We will obstruct so much that this country will be ungovernable by Christmas."
Coming from the party that has made filibustering a well worn tool of politics, I can't say that this suprises me at all.

I am old enough to remember when the Democratic Party was firmly entrenched in the congress. I remember when Republican initiatives were routinely routed/minimalized by those who held the reigns of power.

In some ways, a split government is good because that is when they spend the least amount of money. But I have to wonder if 'making the country ungovernable' is a sign of a party that has the country's best interest in mind, or their own quest for power.

Perhaps this is just the view of one man... at least I hope so...

Hair

What can you tell about a man by the amount of effort he puts into the way his hair looks?

It's 'Real Men' vs. Metrosexuals!

A funny little spoof. With, of course, the appropriate political bent.

Humalia Akrawy: An Iraqi Woman Speaks Out

(via Winds of Change)

Robin Burk interviews an amazing Iraqi woman.

What would you do if you were a 22 year old Kurdish Muslim woman in March of 2003, when an army drawn from several countries invaded your homeland?

If you were Humalia Akrawy you would remember your brother, killed under Saddam -- and remember how they sent back just one leg and part of an arm to demonstrate his death and their power to your family. You would look at your father, who no longer has full use of his hands after being tortured by Saddam.

And then, despite the disapproval of many but with the blessing and support of your family, on 23 March you would volunteer to become a translator for the 101st Airborne Division of the U.S. Army.

But what would you do when Ba'athists and jihadists ambushed your car, injuring your brother and trying to kill you, and when they later killed your 24 year old sister thinking she was you -- pumping 60 AK47 bullets into her body? Or when you received a letter saying, "We know we missed killing you, but we will be back" and then your home was blown up, injuring another brother and killing the Iraqi policeman guarding it?

If you were the remarkable Ms. Akrawy you would help your remaining family members move to a safe area in the far north of the country and then return to your job. And this time, instead of insisting on a lower profile role, you would eagerly agree to become the translator for Lieutenant General Petraeus himself, the commander of the 101st - despite all the media exposure that entailed - and you would proudly do that job in the face of continued death threats against you.


Read more about this amazing woman.

Blogger's Head Explodes

Heh.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

A new 527 takes wing against Kerry

Could this be the October surprise ad that turns the election?

Electronic voting machines in Florida

Apparently they've released a video of a test run performed on the electronic voting machines they are going to use in Florida.

Is there something fishy going on here? It seems to work fine to me...

Be healed!

In an effort to counter John Edwards assertion that the lame will walk and the blind will see if John Kerry is elected as messiah... er... president, President Bush today, has been seen laying on of hands to his constituents at recent political rallies.







Sunday, October 24, 2004

John Kerry Represents the Majority of Opinion

I don't believe there can be any doubt that John Kerry represents the majority of opinion in this nation!

The Future of the Arab People

In response to a blogger's internal debate on whether to cast a vote for Bush or Kerry, Will Allen commented something profound. He doesn't believe terrorism to be an existential threat to the western world, but ultimately it is an existential threat to the Arab people.


I agree with you that the Islamic world does not pose an existential threat to the U.S.. However, if the Islamic world does not rapidly change, we pose an existential threat to them, and although being among a few hundred million slaughtered is about as bad as things get, being among those who do the slaughtering of a few hundred million is pretty damned awful as well, and it is worth taking great, great, risks to avoid such action.

In fact, this prospect is so grim, and in my view, so likely, absent rapid revolutionary change in the Persian Gulf , I see no way that Kerry, who is essentially a reactionary, can be worthy of a vote. A politically, militarily, and economically, and technologically backward people who sit atop of the natural resource greatly desired by far more militarily, economically, and economically powerful people, are going to meet an extraordinarily violent end if they exhibit any proficiency for hostile action against the more powerful people. Obtaining and using the technology of the more powerful people for hostile action merely seals their doom. Neither Bush or Kerry is likely to be the 21st century Andrew Jackson or Phil Sheridan, but he will be found in short order absent the people of the Persian Gulf modernizing rapidly.


The 'war on terror' isn't just about saving a few million Westerners from a WMD attack. Rather, it's about saving the hundreds of millions of Arabs that might suffer from a response to such an attack.

It offends certain Muslims that Westerners dare tread on the land of Muhammad? That Western armed forces are deployed to protect vital economic interests? Well, the harsh reality is that Western civilization is not going to roll over and allow radicals to hold such sway over our economy.

It's not going to happen.

Does this make this ultimately a war for oil? Perhaps it does.


Saturday, October 23, 2004

Stolen Honor

Watch the documentary, John Kerry doesn't want you to see.

UPDATE: Now in High Resolution format.

Observation of a Troop leaving the Theater

Combat Doc who writes A Candle in the Dark writes interesting observations about his time in Iraq.

Children will flip you off then wave to you and smile obviously not knowing what it means. It was taught to them by other units. I'm sure the guys did it and the kids saw it as a greeting. Children draw you pictures of Americans smiling and fighting for them. Raiding someone's house and searching it makes you feel guilty while you destroy their possessions; then you find the stash of RPG's and $10,000.


Another good read...

Bush as Queen

The Bohemians are turning this election into a Rhapsody.

or...

Some people have way too much time on their hands...

Rubbing Big Breasts and Saving Lives

The Questing Cat gives a powerful account about an attack on his unit.

You want to know the most terrible moment of a disaster? It is that split second when it begins. When all of a sudden there is a bright flash, that is nothing special except that it is the big break with reality to the fucked up world you are about to begin. A split second of bright light, and for the briefest second, there is no thought in your head, everything in you braces for....for what?


Read it.

Tribal Politics

A Glimpse of Iraq gives us a glimpse into the workings of modern day tribal politics.

I find this all reminiscent of the Hatfields and McCoys, or of you are more literary, the Montegues and Capulets.

Revenge is qualified by who it is that exacts the revenge. For those in 'modern' cultures, the state has taken over the responsibility of 'revenge'. Immanently less satisfying to those who have been wronged, but it does for the most part prevent the blood feuds this type of social structure seems to generate.

Friday, October 22, 2004

The World is Getting Worse... Not!

I am a kindergarten level student of history.

But, I seem to recall from classes that elections have always been pretty nasty.

I think the same is true about the so called 'media bias' getting worse. Just read a newspaper from 100 or 200 years ago. The shrill reports are pretty funny now that we have the distance of time to see them.

Human nature doesn't change all that much, I believe. We just forget how we used to be.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Not Voting for Bush

Nelson Ascher explains why he isn't going to vote for Bush.



(via LGF)

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Never,

ever, post a picture of yourself holding a sign on the internet...


My favorite...



Gimme your money! Posted by Hello

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

US troops guilty of Mass Murder?

(via CounterColumn)

Sy Hersh?

Never heard of him... at least I didn't recognize the name...

But... have you heard of My Lai? Abu Ghraib? Well, he's the guy who broke both of those stories.

Now he has another one...

Mr. Hersh spoke in front of a Berkley crowd on October 8th and dropped this bombshell on them.


In the evening's most emotional moment, Hersh talked about a call he had gotten from a first lieutenant in charge of a unit stationed halfway between Baghdad and the Syrian border. His group was bivouacking outside of town in an agricultural area, and had hired 30 or so Iraqis to guard a local granary. A few weeks passed. They got to know the men they hired, and to like them. Then orders came down from Baghdad that the village would be "cleared." Another platoon from the soldier's company came and executed the Iraqi granary guards. All of them.

"He said they just shot them one by one. And his people, and he, and the villagers of course, went nuts," Hersh said quietly. "He was hysterical, totally hysterical. He went to the company captain, who said, 'No, you don't understand, that's a kill. We got 36 insurgents. Don't you read those stories when the Americans say we had a combat maneuver and 15 insurgents were killed?'

"It's shades of Vietnam again, folks: body counts," Hersh continued. "You know what I told him? I said, 'Fella, you blamed the captain, he knows that you think he committed murder, your troops know that their fellow soldiers committed murder. Shut up. Complete your tour. Just shut up! You're going to get a bullet in the back.' And that's where we are in this war."



Now honestly, most of what I read from the article, the guy sounds like a tin-foil hat moonbat. But sheesh, the guy has credentials.

If this is true, there needs to be an investigation. If true, it would be damning and probably destroy all that has been accomplished. But the truth needs to come out.

One note of caution... if this is true, why is he spouting this out on a college campus instead of doing some investigative journalism? Why aren't there other journalists on a story like this. Certainly this is Pulitzer Prize material...

Monday, October 18, 2004

Reality is what you Make it

BREAKING UPDATE: The truth is revealed! Fellowship 9/11



Steven Moore from The Truth About Iraq posts an interesting email exchange between a Fahrenheit 9/11 producer and a freelance filmmaker in Iraq.

Of course, I think you would be hard pressed to find anybody that would claim that Michael Moore is objective and obviously he has talent for producing engaging documentaries.

But... if you're going to 'document' something, wouldn't you want to be there to actually... you know... document it?


On Jan 24, 2004, at 1:58 AM, tia lessin wrote:

Dear XXXXX:

I got
your name and email address from YYYYY. I am a
documentary filmmaker working
for Michael Moore. I am looking for video
footage from Iraq featuring
soldiers who disagree with the war and are
angry about being deployed there.
Do you have any footage like this
available for licensing?

Regards,
Victoria Lessin



-----Original Message-----
From: XXXXXXX
Sent: Jan 23, 2004 11:16 PM
To: tia lessin
Subject: Re: Footage needed

Tia:
I don't
really have much of anything that matches that description.
Most soldiers
don't have that perspective, but you can find it.

You can try ZZZZZ,
another doc filmmaker who has been here, I
think he's still here.
ZZZZZ@hotmail.com.
Best wishes,
XXXXX




On Jan 24, 2004, at 6:42 PM, tia@igc.org wrote:

XXXXX

Thanks for
your quick reply and for giving me SSSSS contact info.

Judging by the
thousands of emails Michael has received from deployed soldiers and their
families, that perspective may be more widespread than you think, or at least
more widespread than the mainstream media has shown.

Stay safe out
there.

Best regards,
Tia Lessin




From: XXXXX
Date: January 24, 2004 9:31:31 PM GMT+03:00
To: tia@igc.org
Subject: Re: Footage needed

Tia:
Oh, you can definitely find
that perspective! I simply said most.

I don't know what the mainstream
media is portraying, I don't see it.

I've been in Baghdad since before
the Americans came. Everyone can find infinite faults with the occupation, I
have tons of complaints myself... just as everyone can find some good in the
occupation, you'd have to be blind not to... if you end up spending enough time
here and get to know enough Iraqis you'll see for yourself. I hope the
Americans, and particularly the CPA, leave as soon as possible... I expect they
will. But these issues are not black and white, it's a sea of gray.

It's
certainly a great topic for a documentary.
best wishes,
XXXXX

P.S. BTW, I loved Bowling for Columbine.





Steve:
Here's the e-mail from Michael Moore's people... read the dialog from
the bottom to the top.

Please feel free to pass it on to your brother,
but don't create a big e-mail list about it if you can because I don't want to
have people start sending me hate mail or adding me to their Viagra spams. :-)
XXXXX

Begin forwarded message:


ADDED REFLECTION: Assuming this email exchange is accurate, isn't it odd that Mr. Moore would have to go hunting down GI's for interviews IF IN FACT he had been receiving 1000's of emails?

I mean... wouldn't it be easier to interview the GI's who were already emailing you?


Finance Reform Fails Miserably

Its called the Law of Unintended Consequences.

Good intentions don't always yield good results.

The idea of keeping big money out of politics is a noble one, but one that is destined to fail. Money is like water. It will go where it wants to go and usually there is little you can do to stop it.

The Washington Post examines how the Super Rich are driving the elections this year.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Bad News for Kerry

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi pledged loyalty to bin Laden according to a website previously used by his organization to post beheading video.

The war in Iraq is a diversion?

Mao, Abe, & W

Juan Cole's Informed Comment is a blog that I check on a regular basis. Recently he discussed Ron Suskind's article in the New York Times regarding George W. Bush and his faith.

Professor Cole compares Mr. Bush to communist leader Mao Zedong. He makes an interesting argument.

The above description of the way in which China fell apart under Mao sounds eerily like contemporary Iraq under Bush, since both situations were produced by the same mantra. Reality doesn't matter. Power creates reality. Suskind says that a senior Bush official told him, "We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do." This official may as well have been quoting Mao's Little Red Book: ""it is possible to accomplish any task whatsoever."

Personally, I thought a comparison of George W. Bush to Abrabam Lincoln would have been a better comparison than to Mao Zedong. Or perhaps a comparison of Abraham Lincoln to Mao Zedong.

Here you had this president who wouldn't face the fact that half the country thought it best to secede than accept a president that might work to limit their expansion of slavery. The end result of this 'inability to face the facts' was the largest loss of American lives in a single war. Rather accepting the fact that half the nation believed differently than he did, Mr. Lincoln held on to the 'blind faith' that the nation should remain united.

Personally, conviction to principal, is not something I see as a weakness in a leader. I view it as a strength. In a position of leadership, you will often find that many 'facts' contradict and ultimately you have to make decisions based on a confusing or incomplete picture. It is at this point that one must draw upon their core values of what they believe is right and decide accordingly.

Perhaps the 'intelligentsia' believes talking to God is a sign of mental unbalance or deficiency. Or... perhaps there is something in their inability to 'face the fact' that there are those who believe differently than they, that is threatening to them?

Friday, October 15, 2004

More Voices of Iraq

I recently wrote a short blurb about the documentary, Voices of Iraq, due to come out in November.

Well...

The Wall Street Journal is hopping on board and giving it a resounding 'thumbs up'.

At a time when shrill political diatribes dominate the documentary scene, along comes an authentic work that dares to let the subject speak for itself--literally.
Read the rest...

(hat tip: Melissa in DC)

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Calm before the Storm

J at Iraq Calling reports that despite the bombing in the International Zone, there actually has been a recent lull in insurgency attacks theater wide.

There has been a theater wide lull in enemy activity for the past week. Attacks are significantly below norms. The conventional wisdom is that there will be a surge during Ramadan as happened last year. Ramadan starts tomorrow.


and

In our neighborhood the bad boys have not been successful in their attacks, it seems that they are having difficulty even getting shots over the wire. The maneuver elements have been sweeping up a large number of weapons caches which appears to be putting a serious dent in the bad guys supplies. To me just the fact we are finding the caches is a positive sign. It means the locals are now more willing to tell us where they are. My guess is like in Samarra and Fallujah they see the insurgency as only affecting them negatively and are acting accordingly.



Read the rest...

Peoria Pundit on Images

Bill Dennis has some pretty good info about image techniques & etiquette.

A post I want to tuck away because I know I'll want to read it again as the need arises.

Another Side of Iraq

Steven Moore, blogger for The Truth About Iraq gets Interviewed by the Junkyard Blog.

Steven was an aid worker in Iraq and offers an 'alternate' version about the conditions in Iraq.

Iraqi SWAT kicking ass

(via Kommentariat)

Score one for the good guys. Stories like these make me think the Iraqis have a chance.

Today, some 175 Iraqis have made the team. They are taking the fight to the enemy, and, in many ways, are proving themselves capable of operating as an independent unit.

"This are an emerging force, and yet they are taking the lead in our operations against the insurgents," says Nevers. "We conducted an operation a month ago in which this force did most of the planning and then physically led the way. The operation was very successful, and it consequently set the stage for what we are doing right now."

and


When Iraqi SWAT commandos hit a target, they hit it hard. Racing forward in white pick-up trucks emblazoned with the unit's emblem — a black scorpion and dagger (an emblem designed by the Iraqis) — the raiders leap from the vehicles and rush toward their objective almost before the enemy has time to panic. The attackers — primarily in their early to mid-twenties — are armed with a variety of personal weapons including AK-47s and SIG Sauer assault rifles, shotguns, pistols, and grenades. They all wear khaki-colored assault suits (similar to zip-up flight suits) with an Iraqi-flag patch stitched on the shoulder. Khaki or black balaclavas cover their heads, concealing their faces. "The Iraqis like wearing balaclavas," says Douglas. "It makes them look fearless, and terrifies the enemy."

Rock and roll baby... rock and roll...

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The Gift of Freedom?

Citizen Frank highlights the story about Iraqis resisting the foreign insurgents. He also has this to add...

Here in Baghdad, on eman told me the story o fhis son being kidnapped. He raised a group of men, we would call it a posse back home, and went to the families of the kidnappers. Release the son or we kill the kidnappers families. Son released. Any questions about how Freedom spreads? It has to be fought for by the people wanting it.


Frank makes a brilliant observation.

Can anyone ever be 'given' freedom? Is freedom a gift, or does it have to be earned?

I give my kids a lot of freedom. But are they free? Not really. I have power and authority over them and if they step out of line of what I think they should do, I lay down the law.

I let my kids have the illusion of freedom, but they really aren't free. As long as they depend on me, they are in the cage I have created for them. They don't truly become free until they leave me. That is, when they take the responsibility and costs for their own freedom.

No country or people can truly be free until they grab hold of it themselves and make it their own.

Anything less is a gilded prison.

Joe Kane vs. Farnaz Fassihi

In the political blogging world there has been an email floating around that was written by a Wall Street Journal correspondent. In it, she paints a pretty dire picture of the conditions in Iraq.

A copy of her email can be found here.

Joe Kane, from AbleKaneAdventures, a military journalist, also in Iraq, responds to the email.


Part of the 'change in flavor' of this blog was to put an effort to learn more about the war in Iraq, the Iraqi people, and our role there. Here is an opportunity to view things from two different angles. Both are very good reads.


My kids in a few years? Posted by Hello

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

America vs. Old Europe

Are Americans justified feeling betrayed by Old Europe?

Does everyone in the world have to think, believe, behave as Americans do? Do they have the right to have an opinion different from our own?

Should Americans be upset if they do?

Why can't we all just get along?

I put my two cents in over at Iraqi Letter to America.

Americans have always had a love/hate relationship with "Old Europe" (and vice versa). A lot of it can probably be chalked up to "cultural differences".

American culture has so dominated the world for the last 50 years that many other cultures feel threatened. Everything is becoming 'Americanized'. While we here in America don't see this as a problem, others in the world feel threatened by this. (Perhaps this is one of the underlying motivators for current day terrorism?) If Americans spoke French, I have no doubt that we'd be in the middle of renaming english muffins into emancipation muffins.

The French in their desire to resist the 'americanization' of their culture have sought to distance themselves from us politically. Do we as Americans feel betrayed by this? Yeah, we do. Countless Americans are buried in Europe because we sought to protect 'Old Europe' from militarism and totalitarianism in not one but two world wars and one cold one. Does 'Old Europe' owe America a debt for this? Perhaps so, perhaps not. If so, for how long should this debt be held over their head?

Should 'Old Europe' be expected to follow America where ever we go because of old alliances? No.

But at the same time, you can't expect America to view as friends those who actively work against our interests.

To slant an old axiom... the friend who assists our enemy is our enemy.

A Lonely Voice

Lonely are the Brave and lonelier are the dead.

Good News from Iraq

Chrenkoff posts another in his series "Good News from Iraq". Many of these stories are the ones hidden in the back pages or below the fold.

Not that things are stuperspectacular right now. Many of the military blogs I read have noted an increase in attacks. (something to be expected leading up to the elections) But, this offers a really nice 'balance' to all the bombings and beheadings.

Terrorism Unveiled

Terrorism Unveiled chronicles a student's efforts to understand the Middle East and the root causes of terrorism.

After one month "in country", she has come up with an interesting analysis of 5 factors.

1. Israel is a problem.
2. The Revival of Islam
3. There are peaceful Muslims
4. Woman are oppressed in the Middle East
5. Democracy has many foes and many supporters

Monday, October 11, 2004

Road of a Nation

Road of a Nation | Iraq and the events inside Iraq from an Iraqi is an interesting site that offers Iraqi perspective.

Perhaps a little on the rosy/cheery side, but a perspective nonetheless.

Voices of Iraq

Voices of Iraq is a unique documentary in which 150 cameras were passed to regular Iraqis to document their lives and views. It seems like almost one of those "day in the life of" photo events, except in "talkie" form.

I hope a distributor picks it up so that I can see it when it comes out.

Check it out... it looks fascinating.

Take a sneak peek.

Baghdad Photos

Iraq calling has some interesting pictures taken in Iraq after meetings in the International Zone.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Kristallnacht

I'm sure that most by now have read or heard about the shootings, violence, and vandalism perpertrated against Bush/Cheney headquarters.

Stealing campaign signs is (yawn) expected.

Shooting guns into campaign headquarters is well... reminiscent of Kristallnacht.

A stretch?

Perhaps...

Then again, perhaps not...


Interestingly enough, something is eerily missing from all of this...

I'm listening...



Where are the calls for Kerry to denounce these actions of his supporters. Could it be interpreted that in his silence he tacitly endorses such behavior?



Would Bush be called upon to denounce such behavior if it were Kerry/Edwards campaign headquarters being trashed?


Something to think about...

Women and Children

For the last several days, I've been contemplating a post comparing AP's (the newswire) depiction of when women and children are killed in Iraq.

From what I read from the AP newswire stories, my impression is that women and children are only killed when Americans attack. When a terrorist bomb goes off, only "people" are killed. When America bombs a safe house, or mounts an offensive into a city, then AP is very careful to note how many women and children were killed.

I have no illusions that innocents are killed from American hands. It happens, and reading a number in a news story doesn't even begin to describe the absolute horror those families must be going through.

But...

In Beth's blog, A Labrats Journey, she mentions in passing about a corpsman who is recovering from injuries sustained from an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). She mentions...


We had a corpsman here who was injured from an IED that was a donkey cart being towed by a child, he was here for two weeks and finally left for the states.



I had to read this several times to make sure I read it right.

Using children as tools of war? Killing children in schools?

Are we supposed to believe that there is equivalence between accidental deaths and intentional ones?

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Good news from the Islamic world

Chrenkoff offers "Some recent positive developments along the road to greater democracy, freedom, free market and tolerance."

Interesting read...

Terrorists Intentionally Targeted the Children

According to R1 of Our Turn in Baghdad, the drivers of the two car bombs "swerved and deliberately aimed for a crowd of children".