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Kuwait hunts key suspects after surge of violence
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
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Arabia
Soddies call for an international center to fight terrorism
We may yet end up with Team America before all is said done ...
Saudi Arabia, hit by a wave of attacks by suspected Al Qaeda fighters, used a counter-terror conference yesterday to call for an international centre to combat and pre-empt terrorism. "I call on all countries to set up an international centre for combating terrorism. Those working in it would be experts in this field," Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz told delegates from some 50 countries and international bodies at the start of the four-day gathering. The centre would "exchange and pass information instantly in a manner compatible with the speed of events and prevent them (terror attacks) before they occur," he said.

The crown prince's proposal for a global centre was backed by Arab League chief Amr Moussa, who said the league was prepared to help set it up. Abdullah said the fight against terror was linked to the fight against arms smuggling, drug trafficking and money laundering. "Hence, it would be difficult to prevail in our war on terror if it does not include a decisive confrontation with these three criminal networks," he said. Arab, Islamic and Western states are attending the conference. The US delegation is led by homeland security adviser Frances Townsend, and the British team by Edward Oakden, special representative for counter-terrorism. Also attending are the United Nations, the European Union and the Organisation of the Islamic Conference, whose Secretary-General, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, called on the UN to "issue a resolution prohibiting the linking of terrorism with any religion." The tolerant message of Islam "is not represented by the spurious slogans raised by those... who emerge from the caves of darkness and which are exploited by the enemies of Islam to tarnish its image," Abdullah said.
Posted by: Dan Darling || 02/05/2005 5:59:29 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [396 views] Top|| File under:

#1  If muslims have anything to do with it, it will be co-opted by terrorists the first day it is in operation.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 18:45 Comments || Top||

#2  called on the UN to “issue a resolution prohibiting the linking of terrorism with any religion.” We solve the problem by banning anyone from saying there is a problem. Brilliant!
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 18:53 Comments || Top||

#3  Yeah, I am sure that we will be able to come to a consensus real quick with our arab counterparts during a crisis. This counter terrorism conference is another mad hatters's tea party with good catering.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 02/05/2005 18:59 Comments || Top||

#4  In related news, John Gotti called for a crack down on organized crime.
Posted by: DMFD || 02/05/2005 19:38 Comments || Top||

#5  "We may yet end up with Team America before all is said done ..."

Sad to say, I think you're right. Along with the Paleos, the Saudis just don't "get it"...

Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu...called on the UN to "issue a resolution prohibiting the linking of terrorism with any religion."

...and I have a hunch they never will.
Posted by: Dave D. || 02/05/2005 19:39 Comments || Top||

#6  More like John Gotti calling for access to the FBI database.
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 20:04 Comments || Top||

#7  This is like COAST (an "anti-Spyware" consortium that has Spyware vendors as members).

Besides, there is already a center for anti-terrorism operations. It's in Arlington, Virginia, in a strangely-shaped building.
Posted by: jackal || 02/05/2005 23:23 Comments || Top||


Rice Backs Riyadh's Pace of Reforms
Well, that's the way the Soddies are spinning it, anyway...
Saudi Arabia should be allowed to experiment with democracy at its own pace and not be criticized as a dictatorship, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said yesterday. "Obviously countries are going to move at their own pace, they are going to move toward the liberalization of their politics in the context of their own traditions, religious, historical and others," she told a news conference at the end of her talks with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. "No one can seek to impose a particular model or a particular set of solutions to the question of how one answers the universal aspirations of people for liberty, the simple right for people to be able to say what they think," she said.
On the other hand...
"But we do expect that there should be movement toward reform in all of the countries of the Middle East." Rice said that building democracy often takes time, as it did in the United States, when equal rights were not immediately extended to groups such as women and blacks.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [256 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I think she's right -- and more importantly, I think we have a stake in the Saudis not imploding.

Not an excuse for status quo, which is clearly untenable anyway. But let's make this a controlled detonation, not a runaway nuclear event. Makes the cleanup easier and keeps the costs down.
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 7:06 Comments || Top||

#2  controlled detonation I like that term. I think the middle east holds a lot of surprises over the next few years. One is the controlled dismantling of the saudi regime. The good news is they get to keep Mecca.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 7:22 Comments || Top||

#3  too true: While the sight of the adult male members of the House of Sa'ud decorating the lamp-posts in Riyadh would be gratifying in so many ways, you're right--a "controlled detonation" is better. I suspect we've been seeing one in progress for the past three and a half years.
Posted by: Mike || 02/05/2005 7:28 Comments || Top||

#4  Once again, I think this is a mask of everybody's true intentions. If the US wants SA to have a slow evolution from dual monarchy and theocracy to democracy, the *last* thing it's going to do is let it take place in a natural, Darwinian manner. Instead, the US will intertwine its efforts into every single nuance of the process, to insure that it is as dull as a planning & zoning meeting, not some disaster like the fall of the last Czar, or the Shah of Iran. The optimum result will be the retention of the smart & powerful faction of the Saud family keeping much power and wealth, but through democratic means, and the purging of the stupid & weak parts of their family along with those Wahabbis who pretend to power, which is most of them; and an evolution of the national religion to middle and upper class Sufist Islam.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/05/2005 9:05 Comments || Top||

#5  Part of a 'controlled denotation' would be the creation of the Republic of Eastern Arabia, a 40 km wide strip of land ...
Posted by: Steve White || 02/05/2005 11:55 Comments || Top||

#6  Republic of Eastern Arabia.....
ahhhh, our 51st state and 2nd part of the ANWR "resource-security" park
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 12:04 Comments || Top||


Kuwait: Holy man blathers about root causes
We should deal with devious ideologies intellectually before launching security operations, Cleric Dr Mohammed Al-Awadi told Al-Watan. Describing terrorism as a crime, which is present in all religions, Dr Awadi said "such criminal actions have resulted in devious ideologies, which have been accumulating for a long time." This is a complicated problem, which involves social and ideological issues, he added. He also said "causes of such problems can change quickly. Sometimes they are intangible and hard to identify."

"We must locate the intellectual roots of this problem, their internal and external causes, psychological and security behaviours, international policies and religious beliefs, if we want to identify such misguided ideologies and their sources," Dr Awadi continued. Stressing all these factors must be identified and studied before security confrontations are launched, he said "according to Islam any person has the right to adopt any of such thoughts. However he doesn't have the right to impose his belief on others, especially if his beliefs are wrong." If any misguided person attempts to spread his ideology we have the right to discuss his thoughts and correct him if necessary, Dr Awadi added. "Citizens should not misuse the current exceptional security circumstances to settle personal disputes as this is not the right time for miscalculated heroic acts," Dr Awadi said. "All of us are in the same boat and we must cooperate to seal all holes to ensure the boat can sail safely."
This article starring:
MOHAMED AL AWADILearned Elders of Islam
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [285 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Translation: it's all the fault of the Jooooooooooooooossssssssss.
Posted by: DMFD || 02/05/2005 19:44 Comments || Top||

#2  How 'bout we start killing up your people by the massive f*ckload, and you can go ponder the root causes of that? That solution works best for me.
Posted by: BH || 02/05/2005 19:59 Comments || Top||


Bahrain seeks peaceful solution to US-Iran rift
Bahrain has said the current tension between the United States and Iran over the Islamic Republic's nuclear programme must not lead to a military confrontation.
It doesn't have to. But neither can the current situation continue.
Manama wants to see the issue left to the International Atomic Energy Agency to decide the appropriate course of action, Bahrain Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Shaikh Mohammad Bin Mubarak Al Khalifa was quoted yesterday as saying. "Iran has accepted the IAEA's inspection and we hope the UN watchdog would do its job and avoid any confrontation," he said in an interview with Bahrain newspapers in Abu Dhabi on the sidelines of His Majesty King Hamad Bin Eisa Al Khalifa's visit on Wednesday to the UAE. "We have always called for a Middle East free from weapons of mass destruction. But we also say let the IAEA deal with this issue," he added.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [260 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Of course, they become "target numero uno" once the s**t hits the fan. They are the main naval support base for the gulf as well as logistics and tactical support for SFO.
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 02/05/2005 6:13 Comments || Top||

#2  "But we also say let the IAEA deal with this issue."

Seems to me that was how we got into this situation in the first place...
Posted by: Dave D. || 02/05/2005 8:08 Comments || Top||

#3  I wonder where our next command posts and naval facilities will be.

We had a quiet presence in Qatar long before we officially moved the force command there from Arabia. But port facilities are more visible and take much longer to build -- plus there are fewer attractive places to build them.

Ultimately, the possibility of sea-based mobile centers has promise. The expense is huge, though, and it will take time to develop them.
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 8:14 Comments || Top||

#4  What I am hearing from Bush/Rice is Mullah ruled Iran with nuclear weapons is an unacceptable situation and must/will be stopped. However, the means have yet to be determined. I am fully in agreement with this assesment and await news on the means.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 8:28 Comments || Top||

#5  Okay fellow RB hard chargers, time for a hypothetical - how does this one end?

a) Iran complies w/the EU3's negotiations?
b) Bush beats Khamenei in arm wrestling match, Iran turns into peaceful representative democracy.
c) As soon as Iraq is stabilized U.S. backs fifth column and students in Iran to overthrow mullahs.
d) Khamenei calls U.S. "big headed dragon." Bush shrugs sends precision air strikes.
e) All of the above.

-any other input welcomed.

Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 11:47 Comments || Top||

#6  all but a and b
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 11:58 Comments || Top||

#7  You saying the shrub couldn't kick mullah ass in Laredo #3 arm wrestling?
Posted by: Shipman || 02/05/2005 12:47 Comments || Top||

#8  CONDI could kick mullah ass in arm wrestling.
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 12:51 Comments || Top||


Bahrain appeals to regional coutries to confront extremism
Bahrain Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Shaikh Mohammad Bin Mubarak Al Khalifa appealed to the regional countries to "confront extremist ideologies," which are threatening the region. "We know there are Friday sermons, fatwas, and [religious] camps that collect money, a good part of which goes to support extremist ideology. We ourselves should confront these terrorist tendencies. We should not just sit there and blame the others," he said.
Eventually we'll come for them, you know. We're actually still in the very early stages of the War on Terror.
However, he stressed that the region's religious teachings had nothing to do with the rise of militancy. "Our schools teach religion. They don't teach our children how to kill people," he said.
But your holy men do. Your neighbors do. Your culture — or at least that of the Lions of the Desert — does. The desert hard boyz have been beating up on their civilized coastal cousins for thousands of years. You really don't have to take it, you know.
On Iraq, he said Bahrain was "happy" that last Sunday's elections were successful. He criticised the factions that boycotted the elections, saying that anyone who wants to end the occupation should enrol in the political process in that country.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [277 views] Top|| File under:


Britain
Al-Qaeda attack on London inevitable
It is "inevitable" that Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda network will try to stage an attack in London, the British capital's new police chief said in an interview. Sir Ian Blair's warning in the Daily Telegraph newspaper echoed similar concerns expressed a year ago by Sir John Stevens, his predecessor as Metropolitan Police commissioner. "It is inevitable that terrorists connected with Al-Qaeda will attempt to carry out an atrocity in London," said Blair, 51, who took over as Britain's most senior police officer on Tuesday. "I know that because they have. It is difficult to calculate whether it is inevitable that they will get through."

Al-Qaeda, perpetrator of the September 11 attacks in New York and Washington in 2001, is regarded by the British government as "the most significant terrorist threat" to the nation. Besides day-to-day policing in greater London, the Metropolitan Police is responsible for anti-terrorist operations all over Britain. Blair told the Daily Telegraph that he backed the introduction of identity cards in Britain, saying they would help identify suspects in anti-terrorist raids. He also called for telephone wiretaps to be allowed as evidence in terrorist trials. Stevens, who has retired, spoke of the "inevitability" of an Al-Qaeda attack on London shortly after the Madrid commuter train bombings in March last year in which 191 people died.
Posted by: Dan Darling || 02/05/2005 5:53:16 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [269 views] Top|| File under:


Muslim apostates in the UK
A must-read, IMO. The multicultist Islam-appeasing Government and government agents' betrayal of those who reject Islam is their dirtiest crime. Slightly EFL.
THE first brick was thrown through the sitting room window at one in the morning, waking Nissar Hussein, his wife and five children with a terrifying start. The second brick went through his car window. It was a shock, but hardly a surprise. The week before, another brick had been thrown through the window as the family were preparing for bed in their Bradford home. The victim of a three-year campaign of religious hatred, Mr Hussein's car has also been rammed and torched, and the steps to his home have been strewn with rubbish. He and his family have been regularly jostled, abused, attacked, shouted at to move out of the area, and given death threats in the street. His wife has been held hostage inside their home for two hours by a mob. His car, walls and windows have been daubed in graffiti: "Christian bastard". The problem isn't so much what Mr Hussein, whose parents came from Pakistan, believes, but what he doesn't believe. Born into Islam, he converted eight years ago to Christianity, and his wife, also from Pakistan, followed suit.

While those who convert to Islam, such as Cat Stevens, Jemima Khan, and the sons of the Frank Dobson, the former Health Secretary, and Lord Birt, the former BBC Director-General, can publicly celebrate their new religion, those whose faith goes in the other direction face persecution. Mr Hussein, a 39-year-old hospital nurse in Bradford, is one of a growing number of former Muslims in Britain who face not just being shunned by family and community, but attacked, kidnapped, and in some cases killed. There is even a secret underground network to support and protect those who leave Islam. One estimate suggests that as many as 15 per cent of Muslims in Western societies have lost their faith, which would mean that in Britain there are about 200,000 apostates.
I would guess that number's going to rise. The younger generations know that Islam has nothing to offer them in Western society. The young are far more likely to be MINOs than immigrant parents.

For police, religious authorities and politicians, it is an issue so sensitive that they are accused by victims of refusing to respond to appeals for help. It is a problem that, with the crisis of identity in Islam since September 11, seems to be getting worse as Muslims feel more threatened.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Bulldog || 02/05/2005 1:05:44 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [302 views] Top|| File under:


Caucasus/Russia/Central Asia
Information About Death Of Warlord Basayev Is Mere Rumors
Head of the Chechen State Council Taus Dzhabrailov believes that the information about the death of warlord Shamil Basayev is mere rumors.
Drat. Rats. Phooey.
"I cannot either confirm or refute this information. I think that so far it is mere rumors," Mr. Dzhabrailov said in an interview with RIA Novosti on Friday, commenting on the reports in some mass media about Basayev's possible death. Mr. Dzhabrailov expressed the opinion that "for pacifying the situation Basayev's death would be very useful both for Chechnya and Russia on the whole."

The power structures in Chechnya share the opinion of the head of the State Council. "This information is most likely rumors spread, apparently, at the instructions of Basayev himself to have a breathing spell for himself and his band," a source in the republican power structures told RIA Novosti. He did not rule out that now Basayev might undergo a medical treatment somewhere abroad. The Russian law enforcement bodies do not have any data about Basayev's death, the source said.
This article starring:
SHAMIL BASAIEVChechnya
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [259 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Hope spring eternal. My hope is to see this bastards corpse swinging at the end of a rope. Hearing he got sploded or shot dead isn't the kind of revenge I need. I have hopes of him getting a pigskin lined coffin as well.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 3:45 Comments || Top||


Down Under
Tears fall as little Manny walks tall
IT was the moment Manuel Musu dreamed of - his daughter Manny, 5, the girl who captured Australian hearts when her life was smashed apart by the Jakarta Australian Embassy bomb blast, walking for the first time since the terror attack. Manny's beaming face tells a story of triumph as she holds the hand of her Aunt Esti, her mother's sister, in her father's photographs of the moment. She has overcome her grief following the death of her mother, Maria Eva Kumalawati, in the September 9 blast, endured months of agony with shrapnel still spread through her body, and defied the medical odds to take her first steps. Mr Musu, 31, said he choked back tears as he photographed his daughter's short but brave journey. "It happened just a few days ago," an emotional Mr Musu told The Sunday Mail. "It was a late Christmas present, but it was perfect." Manny will soon return to Singapore for an operation to remove a piece of metal wedged 7cm inside her brain. If it remained there it would always endanger her life. Mr Musu said that after the operation he planned to take Manny to her mother's grave in Jakarta, and to visit Maria Eva's other sisters in the Indonesian capital.

Manny, five, made world headlines when it emerged her genetic father was Australian police constable Dave Norman, 25, the result of an affair with Maria Eva, 27, which Mr Musu knew nothing of. After weeks of confusion that loomed as an international tug-of-war for Manny's custody, Mr Norman and Mr Musu agreed that she should be raised in Italy by Mr Musu, the only father she has known.
Posted by: God Save The World || 02/05/2005 2:38:02 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [276 views] Top|| File under:


Israeli envoy expelled from Australia
Australia secretly forced a senior Israeli diplomat to leave the country, and neither Israel nor Australia wanted to comment about the matter, according to a newspaper report. The Sydney morning Herald said the effective expulsion of the Canberra-based diplomat - described as a consul in Israel - was covered up for several weeks. But it said the matter had come to light in a report in the Israeli newspaper Ma'ariv. It said inquiries about the story were met by no comments from the Australian government.

The Ma'ariv newspaper speculated there might be some connection with last year's scandal in which two alleged agents of the Israeli spy service, Mossad, were arrested in New Zealand. The arrest came after they were caught trying to fraudulently obtain passports. The Sydney Morning Herald said it had been told by a source close to the Israeli cabinet that the reason for the incident must have been serious, given the friendly relations between the two countries. It came ahead of a scheduled tour of Australia by Israeli President Moshe Katsav early next month. The paper said the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade summoned a senior embassy official to a meeting at which it requested the immediate recall of the consul. It said if Israel did not withdraw its diplomat voluntarily, steps would be taken to declare him persona non grata and to initiate proceedings for his deportation. In response, the Israeli Foreign Ministry instructed the diplomat to pack his bags and return home immediately.
Posted by: God Save The World || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [275 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Bet there's gonna be some arrests in Australian intel agencies.
Posted by: Shipman || 02/05/2005 9:54 Comments || Top||


Downer calls for democracy in Nepal
Foreign Minister Alexander Downer has called for the reinstatement of multi-party democracy in Nepal in the wake of a political crisis sparked by the royal sacking of the government.
Well, that should do it...
The Himalayan nation was plunged into crisis after its King Gyanendra sacked the government and seized power, declaring a state of emergency and later installing a 10-member pro-royalist cabinet. Mr Downer said in a statement that the developments were of concern to Australia. "The action is contrary to the principles of multi-party democracy and is a setback to hopes for lasting peace and stability in Nepal," he said. "Australia supports the immediate return to multi-party democracy and respect for civil liberties and freedom of expression."
I don't think it's going to do any good. Gyanendra's a nut.
Posted by: God Save The World || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [264 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Are we sure this guy's Nepalese? He looks like Herb from Accounting...
Posted by: mojo || 02/05/2005 13:23 Comments || Top||

#2  :)
Posted by: Bruce || 02/05/2005 16:34 Comments || Top||


Europe
Woman will kill Hirsi Ali
Posted by: tipper || 02/05/2005 09:24 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [253 views] Top|| File under:


Dutch flag prohibited!
Posted by: tipper || 02/05/2005 09:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under:

#1  " The school says they need to do this because of the new social climate."

Kind of like global warming.
Posted by: Matt || 02/05/2005 9:54 Comments || Top||

#2  Oh geez, it's been a long time since the Dutch went bananas. When it does happen, however, I would suspect that it's much like a German on methamphetamine.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/05/2005 10:16 Comments || Top||

#3  This film ends bad.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 02/05/2005 10:22 Comments || Top||

#4  Are you sure this isn't ScrappleFace? *checks link* They're krutzed-up.
Posted by: Korora || 02/05/2005 10:33 Comments || Top||

#5  My heart bleeds for the Dutch.
Posted by: gromgorru || 02/05/2005 10:47 Comments || Top||

#6  They deny access to students who have flags on their bags or cloth. The school says they need to do this because of the new social climate. But they say prohibition is a big word, they do it in consent with the pupils...

This guy is contradicting himself. We deny access to those with a flag but we dont prohibit the flag? He also says they dont do it out of fear but because of the social climate (i.e. to avoid the violence from the Moroccans?).
Posted by: CrazyFool || 02/05/2005 11:05 Comments || Top||

#7  That the issued even had to be raised is pathetic. Do Dutch schools not fly the Dutch flag outside on their premises? If so, are they going to take that down because it may "upset" some students of moroccan descent? Fucking pussies.
Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 11:37 Comments || Top||

#8  Student to administrator: BIOYA.
Posted by: Weird Al || 02/05/2005 11:40 Comments || Top||

#9  Sounds like the Dutch Dhimmitude is ahead of schedule.
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 11:41 Comments || Top||

#10  Insane. Moroccans are taking over the country and the school admininstrators are helping aided by the government and elected Politicians. Freaking pussies.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 13:42 Comments || Top||

#11  I just got off the phone with the Netherlands. Everyone is back peddling like mad on this now. Some adults have apparently stepped in and taking control. The Dutch are used to consensus they need it because they live in such a small space. They just haven't learned it's not part of islamic culture. In Islamic culture you do as the religious authorities say and thats it. You don't need nor are you encourage to think for yourself or reach a group decision. Allah has already made all you decisions for you and your Imam will let you know what it is. That just isn't the Dutch way of doing things.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 15:27 Comments || Top||

#12  But they say prohibition is a big word, they do it in consent with the pupils...

Kind of like soliciting 'volunteers' in the military.
Posted by: Pappy || 02/05/2005 22:50 Comments || Top||


Turkey awaits Rice with growing concern
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrives here at the weekend facing the tough task of allaying Turkish fears that an independent Kurdish state — Ankara's long-standing bete noire — is taking shape in Iraq as Washington turns a blind eye.
Yep. That eye's blind. Hain't been able to see out of it since, oh... 'bout March, 2003.
Ties between the two NATO allies have failed to fully recover since hitting an all-time low prior to the US-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003, when Turkey stunned Washington by denying it access to its territory to mount an attack on Iraq from the north. Analysts fear new tensions may be now looming, with Ankara increasingly frustrated over what it sees as US reluctance to rein in Kurdish moves to take control of the oil-rich city of Kirkuk in northern Iraq as part of a suspected plot to break away from Baghdad. "The issue of northern Iraq is of vital importance for Turkey. The Americans say they understand Turkey but when it comes to action on the ground there is no reason for trust," said Bahadir Koc from the Ankara-based ASAM think tank.
Lemme see, here. The Kurds stood by us, did what they promised to do, and they've been friends to us. The Turks... ummm... make good coffee.
Independence-minded moves in northern Iraq, Ankara fears, will embolden separatism across the border in southeastern Turkey, where a Kurdish rebellion has already claimed some 37,000 lives. Turkish suspicions were reinforced when large numbers of Kurds said to have been expelled from Kirkuk under Saddam Hussein were allowed to settle and vote in the city in last week's elections, despite protests by rival ethnic groups that many of them have no bonds with Kirkuk. As the Kurds braced for large political gains, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed the United States this week, charging that "forces who say they came to the region to bring democracy have preferred to remain indifferent to anti-democratic ambitions."
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [411 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Erdogan slammed the United States this week, charging that "forces who say they came to the region to bring democracy have preferred to remain indifferent to anti-democratic ambitions."

That sounds like a nice Ottomaniac blather to me.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 1:39 Comments || Top||

#2  Erdogan ought to be in Paris crying on Chiraq's shoulder instead. Ol' Jacko's always been...shall we say, historically sympathetic to "anti-democratic ambitions" in that neighborhood.
Posted by: Ricky bin Ricardo (Abu Babaloo) || 02/05/2005 3:24 Comments || Top||

#3  Condi to Recep:

"You know, Recep, I was pricing Turkish rugs for the new office, and, you know, with the duties and taxes and all, they're just...so damned expensive. Crying shame, really...we'd signed that free-trade agreement with the Aussies, and some of us were thinking that 'TAFTA' had a nice ring to it..you know, 'Trans-Atlantic Free Trade Agreement'?

Oh, well, I'm sure Jacques and Gerhard were so grateful for your support...maybe they'll only make you wait five years before telling you Turkey'll get EU membership about the same time the Winter Olympics are held in New Guinea..."
Posted by: Ricky bin Ricardo (Abu Babaloo) || 02/05/2005 3:41 Comments || Top||

#4  When I saw that headline, I was thinking someone was preparing dinner.

Never read Rantburg on an empty stomach.
Posted by: jackal || 02/05/2005 11:15 Comments || Top||

#5  Turkey lost any chips they might cash in in a stoopid bid for EU/French love. Typically they now adopt the "you need to make nice to us to earn our love back". F*&k em. Kurd power!
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 11:40 Comments || Top||

#6  What a bunch of Turkeys ...
Posted by: DMFD || 02/05/2005 17:45 Comments || Top||

#7  Typically they now adopt the "you need to make nice to us to earn our love back".

Turks and Paleos: birds of a feather....
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 02/05/2005 23:32 Comments || Top||


Germany vows help on Iraq
Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder last night pro-mised to deepen Germany's commitment to Iraq and offer wider help in its reconstruction following landmark elections there. "We have a lot of experience with building functional institutions for countries," Schroeder said after talks with visiting US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. "And this is a kind of assistance that we would like to make available to the Iraqi government if it is desired," he said.

Schroeder suggested however that Germany would not send troops to Iraq in line with a long-term commitment not to play a military role in the war-torn country. He said that Germany would continue to train Iraq's fledgling security forces outside of the country. German politicians said Rice's visit could help pave the way to improved US-German relations, strained by the war in Iraq. Hans-Ullrich Klose, a foreign relations expert for Schroeder's Social Democrats, said: "I increasingly see the chance for tensions between some European countries and the US government to improve in the near future."
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [277 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Ah, the realpolitik! Is Schroeder affraid that CDU/CSU will sweep the next elections? The 'hate merkins' card was not that great card now, Gerhard, wuz it?
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 3:01 Comments || Top||

#2  "We have a lot of experience with building functional institutions for countries,"

Oh,yeah! Name one beside Vichy France, Quisling Norway, Fascist Austria, etc.
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 02/05/2005 6:17 Comments || Top||

#3  http://ridingsun.blogspot.com/2005/02/germany-comes-around.html

I guess they don't want to be on the wrong side of another U.S. war...
Posted by: GaijinBiker || 02/05/2005 9:26 Comments || Top||

#4  Sobiesky: “The 'hate merkins' card was not that great card now, Gerhard, wuz it?”

From what I’ve read anti-Americanism continues to play well in Germany.
Posted by: Anonymous5032 || 02/05/2005 12:19 Comments || Top||

#5  Yup, and he's trolling to see if we can give him some more outrage that will divert peoples' attention from the truly lousy economic shape they're in.
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 12:49 Comments || Top||


Danish imams snub call to boycott polls
Danish Muslim leaders yesterday rejected a radical group's call to boycott elections next week which Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who backs the war in Iraq and has clamped down on immigration, is expected to win. Rasmussen swept to power in 2001 with promises to clamp down on asylum-seekers. He has sent 500 troops to southern Iraq to support the US-led war, which initially had broad backing but is now losing popularity among Danes, according to polls. Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir ("Party of Liberation" in Arabic), which is outlawed in many countries, called for an boycott of Tuesday's elections because democracy is "in contradiction to Islam". But the Danish Muslim Society said 21 imams had advised voters to follow their own conscience.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [278 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Well, ummah has never been homogenous, there's a myriad of sects, too many to count... granted, most are not with a heavy membership.

It seems that some imams do get it that if they don't oppose wahhabi encroachment, there may be not much Islam to speak of in 50-some years.

If the real moderates manage to turn jihad into da "internal struggle" thingie, I can live with that.
For a while. Because time will come again when some fuquetard would interpret it again that it means "kill the infidel wherever you find him".
I maintain we need a believable deux ex machina to deal with contingencies in this regard.

Does anyone know about a reliable teleportation device that has a pattern recognition built in?
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 4:55 Comments || Top||


International-UN-NGOs
Newsday: Kluzeaux Klosing in on Kofi's Kid
Investigators probing alleged corruption at the United Nations oil-for-food program are scrutinizing thousands of pages of U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's documents, including e-mail and phone records, to determine whether he exerted influence in securing a contract for a Swiss company that employed his son.

Paul Volcker, the head of the independent investigation, confirmed the document search and told The Associated Press that new information had led investigators to delay publishing their findings about Annan's son Kojo, whose activities have embroiled the U.N. chief in the growing scandal. "There were things that came along that threw us back," Volcker said in an AP interview.

Dr. Mohammed al-Jibouri, Iraq's trade minister, said on Saturday that more has yet to be revealed on specific individuals' roles in the scandal. He did not specify any names in his comments, made to Associated Press Television News. "There are a lot of names, and I hope there will be some fairness on that _ not to shut out the light, and put this in the dark, under the carpet," al-Jibouri said.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 02/05/2005 6:51:14 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [474 views] Top|| File under:

#1 
It sure looks like a cover-up.
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 20:05 Comments || Top||

#2  Say "EU" and the AW shows up. Say "Kojo" and AW #2 shows up. Next AW #2 will refer you to #79...
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 20:14 Comments || Top||

#3  There are many degrees of cover-up.

The questions, Mr. Sylwester, are whether or not anything of substance will be 'found', whether the 'names' are the perpetrators or just ones chosen to be tossed from the troika, and whether or not the 'names' face justice or are allowed to avoid apprehension.

The organisation's track record doesn't exactly inspire confidence.
Posted by: Pappy || 02/05/2005 23:06 Comments || Top||

#4  The Guardian maintains the UN has touched bottom and things will get better from here. A minor classic of spin.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 23:33 Comments || Top||


Fox: DA Launches Criminal Probe of Sevan
Closing in on Kojo
UNITED NATIONS The Manhattan district attorney has launched a criminal probe into Benon Sevan, the U.N. Oil-for-Food chief who investigators said had "serious conflict of interest" while overseeing the program. Sources close to the case told FOX News that District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, who has been investigating financial relationships within the Oil-for-Food program, planned to probe the activities of Sevan, who has been accused of receiving about $1 million worth of lucrative oil vouchers. A report released Thursday pointed to significant management problems within the United Nations surrounding the $60 billion Oil-for-Food program. The report by a U.N.-authorized committee headed by Paul Volcker said that Sevan had "seriously undermined" the integrity of the United Nations. "Our conclusion is he placed himself in a serious conflict of interest," Volcker said at a news conference. "Our investigation continues into what other implications there may be if any." Morgenthau's investigation into Sevan, whose diplomatic immunity, the U.N. said, won't be lifted unless it's requested by Volcker or a prosecutor, marks the first step toward prosecution of the official.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 02/05/2005 6:05:19 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [400 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Looks like they are zeroing in on Kojo as well - For example, an article published in the Times of London late last month detailed contact between Kojo Annan and Hani Yamani, the son of a former Saudi oil minister, in a failed bid for an oil-for-food deal. The paper quoted two unnamed "business associates" of Yamani, who claimed Kojo traveled to Morocco to help finalize the $60 million oil sale which later fell through. Link
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 18:40 Comments || Top||

#2  phil, I just posted an article about that from Newsday. It appears Kojo is not being 100% cooperative.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 02/05/2005 18:52 Comments || Top||

#3  I guess the Law and Order episode will be on in March. Doink-Doink!
Posted by: Eric Jablow || 02/05/2005 21:47 Comments || Top||

#4  "PAUL VOLCKER: Now first and obviously the most disturbing finding is the accumulation of evidence that the Director of the Office of the Iraq Program, Mr Benon Sevan, in fact did repeatedly solicit oil allocations for a small trading company called AMEP (African Middle East Petroleum)."
http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2005/s1296027.htm
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 21:52 Comments || Top||

#5  ...Sevan, whose diplomatic immunity, the U.N. said, won't be lifted unless it's requested by Volcker or a prosecutor...

M'thinks any such lifting will occur within hours- of Mr. Sevan's flight landing in Cyprus.
Posted by: Pappy || 02/05/2005 23:10 Comments || Top||

#6  Seems there is a problem with lifting the diplomatic immunity. He lands in Cyprus.... he's in Cyprus's hands, and they have to give him up for any legal prosecution.
Posted by: Sherry || 02/05/2005 23:23 Comments || Top||


Idealism at the UN
An article from Policy Review, titled Idealism at the UN, by Michael J. Glennon, a professor of international law at the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University, and the author of Limits of Law, Prerogatives of Power: Interventionism After Kosovo

In ... 2003 .... United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan ... proceeded to appoint a group, the "High-level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change" to recommend reforms. The panel consisted of former governmental officials and in pursuing its task met at various points around the world. Hopes ran high that its ideas would breathe new life into an organization that needed, in Annan's word, "radical" change. In December 2004, it issued its report.

For a Burkean realist with any sense of institutional conservation, making the most of the United Nations is a useful project. Lots of capital, financial and otherwise, has been invested in the organization over the past 60 years. To the extent possible, humanity should profit from its investment. Even if the objective were merely to advance individual states' national interests, the UN may be a useful tool for doing so. In any event, it is hard to fault an organization that recognizes the need to reform itself, especially one that has borne the hopes of humanity so heavily as has the United Nations.
Realists, Burkean and otherwise, must also recognize that there are times when a project needs to be either written off in toto or broken up and the useful pieces salvaged, the ineffective allowed to die. It's fairly common for businesses to get caught up in white elephant projects, obvious and sometimes spectacular failures, and keep on slugging because of that reluctance to walk away from the sunk costs. The same occurs with government, as anyone knows who's listened to NPR...
Sadly, however, the core recommendations of the panel's report, concerning the use of armed force, rest upon wishful thinking rather than empirical evidence. The report evinces a view of a world governed by objective, universal morality rather than by competition for power and shifting national interests. .... The report, in short, exhibits all the familiar shortcomings of old-style Platonic idealism, ignoring the real-world incentives and disincentives to which states actually respond.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 3:31:36 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [301 views] Top|| File under:


Head of Oil-for-Food Program Disciplined
The United Nations vowed to discipline two officials implicated in a report that detailed conflicts of interest and flawed management in the UN oil-for-food program, while the man leading the investigation warned that more revelations were forthcoming.
So they haven't actually disciplined him, they've just vowed to do so...
The interim report, released Thursday, zeroed in on the chief of the oil-for-food program, Benon Sevan, saying Saddam Hussein's regime awarded oil allocations in his name to a trading company between 1998 and 2001. It said Sevan had "seriously undermined the integrity of the United Nations" and suggested he may have received kickbacks, possibly using an aunt to mask his trail. Sevan has denied he ever received any money.
"No, no! Certainly not!"
Based on the report, Secretary-General Kofi Annan will discipline Sevan and another UN official, Joseph Stephanides, who may have "tainted" bidding for an oil-for-food contract, said Mark Malloch Brown, Annan's chief of staff. Allegations that the United Nations itself was enmeshed in corrupt practices in the program led Annan to appoint former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker to investigate. Several US congressional teams are also looking into it. Volcker told the Associated Press that the investigation found no "systematic mismanagement" of the oil-for-food program. But he said there were serious problems. "It is not the whole story by a long shot," Volcker said at a news conference to release the report. Despite Sevan's claims that he never recommended any companies for oil vouchers, Volcker's Independent Inquiry Committee said it had evidence that Sevan asked Iraq to give a small Swiss-based oil company, African Middle East Petroleum Co. Ltd. Inc. the opportunity to buy oil. The company, known as AMEP, received the allocations and earned $1.5 million from them. The report did not say Sevan received kickbacks, but said it was suspicious of $160,000 he said he received from his aunt in his native Cyprus from 1999-2003. The report questioned this "unexplained wealth."
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [281 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I'm sure Koffi will speak quite sharply to Sevan (for not giving him a bigger cut).....
Posted by: CRazyFool || 02/05/2005 0:09 Comments || Top||

#2  Sevan is my candidate for suspicious death of the year's first quarter
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 15:12 Comments || Top||

#3  Either that or a nice retirement chalet on the Rhone.
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 15:37 Comments || Top||

#4  If this being "disciplined" doesn't involve dismissal and prosecution for the appropriate parties, then it doesn't mean a damned thing.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 02/05/2005 16:06 Comments || Top||

#5  160K? He came cheap, it seems. Why do I doubt that? Could there be, perhaps, other monies in accounts elsewhere, or under another name?

Nah, of course not! Silly me.
Posted by: mojo || 02/05/2005 20:56 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Senate Committee Focuses on CIA's Iranian Assessments
The Senate Intelligence Committee has launched what its chairman called a "pre-emptive" examination of U.S. intelligence on Iran as part of an effort to avoid the problems that plagued America's prewar assessments on Iraq. Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., said in an interview Friday that he had sought the unusual review because the erroneous prewar claims about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction had made lawmakers wary of the CIA's current assessments on Iran. "We have to be more pre-emptive on this committee to try to look ahead and determine our capabilities so that you don't get stuck with a situation like you did with Iraq," said Roberts, who also voiced concern about current intelligence on the insurgency in Iraq.

The White House has made it clear that Iran will be a focus of U.S. foreign policy in President Bush's second term. In his State of the Union speech earlier this week, the president identified Iran as "the world's primary state sponsor of terror, pursuing nuclear weapons while depriving its people of the freedom they seek and deserve." A recent CIA report concludes that Tehran is vigorously pursuing programs to produce nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. The aim of the Senate review, Roberts said, is to ensure that any weaknesses in American intelligence on Iran are being disclosed to policymakers, and that U.S. spy agencies have adequate resources to fill gaps in collecting information on the Islamic republic.

Roberts said the review was in its early stages and that the committee had not reached any preliminary judgments about the quality of U.S. intelligence reports on Tehran's alleged weapons activities. Senior aides on the committee stressed that the panel was not opening a formal investigation or inquiry. Rather, they said that the review of intelligence on Iran was part of a broader shift in the way the committee approaches its oversight responsibilities, toward anticipating problems rather than investigating intelligence failures after they occur. Roberts said the review of U.S. efforts to spy on Iran would largely take place behind closed doors, involving interviews with analysts and intelligence officials, and a review of classified documents. Aides said that unlike the committee's review on Iraq -- which culminated in a 500-page public report containing harsh criticism of the CIA -- there was no plan to go public with its findings on the quality of intelligence on Iran.
The real purpose is threefold: to make sure that the CIA (and State) is no longer occupied by Islamophiles or insolent schoolboys; to give all the other intelligence agencies a chance to disagree *now*, rather than later; and to totally neutralize any John Kerryism if we do go to war with Iran--if you vote "yes" you darn well better mean "yes".
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/05/2005 9:54:35 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [267 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Not to mention sending a clear signal to the mullahs .....
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 12:46 Comments || Top||

#2  there was no plan to go public with its findings on the quality of intelligence on Iran.

No doubt there'll be an 'unplanned' release of the findings.
Posted by: Pappy || 02/05/2005 22:36 Comments || Top||


Iran blasts Rice's speech
Iranian officials have criticised US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's speech, saying her comments were inaccurate.
Comes as a surprise, huh?
Speaking to Aljazeera from Tehran on Friday, adviser to the Iranian President Muhammad Shariati said Rice's comments were not warmly welcomed. "We reject the accusations Rice has directed at Iran, particularly those related to Iran's acts in 'destabilising the region' ," he said. "All her accusations were inaccurate as Iran has neither dealt with the Taliban nor Saddam's regime, but their relations with past US administrations have been friendly."
That's why we took them apart, of course. They just got too friendly...
Rice had said that a pre-emptive strike against Iran is not on the agenda adding that Iran needs to live up to its obligations and agree to verification inspections. But Iran maintains that it has the international right to possess nuclear technology like any other nation. "How come a country that has approved a non-proliferation treaty on nuclear arms could not have the right to possess peaceful nuclear technology," Shariati said. In her speech, Rice said that attacking Iran was not a current option as diplomatic talks were ongoing: "The question is simply not on the agenda at this point; we have diplomatic means to do this," she said.
"If that doesn't work, they'll think they've met a steamroller up close and personal...
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Iranian officials have criticised US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's speech, saying her comments were inaccurate.

Well of course they were inaccurate, she said Iran wasn't a target!
Posted by: AzCat || 02/05/2005 1:45 Comments || Top||

#2  Notice how they didn't criticize her lack of burqa wearing, lack of staying at home barefoot & pregnant, and her inherent female immorality stirring them to no emotion other than abject fear? I guess that means that they just don't "respect" her as much as one of their chattel servants they call mothers, wives, and daughters.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/05/2005 8:29 Comments || Top||

#3  "How come a country that has approved a non-proliferation treaty on nuclear arms could not have the right to possess peaceful nuclear technology,"

-because your statement is an oxymoron of your nation's policies toward one of your neighbors.
Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 12:16 Comments || Top||

#4  How great is the fact that Bush's right hand woman happens to be a non-burqa wearing Afro-American female who's threatening to lay the beating on the Mullahs - perfect, keep the head warmers off balance with a little chocolate thunder.
Posted by: Rightwing || 02/05/2005 12:38 Comments || Top||


Democracy after elections may encourage change in Iran — Kadivar
A successful transition to democracy in Iraq would increase pressure for change in Iran, a leading Iranian clerical dissident said on Wednesday. Mohsen Kadivar, whose views have earned him time in jail, also urged Iraq not to follow the Iranian model of granting ultimate power to a senior cleric. "I think the Iraqis can make what we wanted to create but were unsuccessful: a real Islamic Republic," he said in an interview. "By that I mean a republic with Islamic values, democracy with Islamic values ... (where) the clergy has no special rights."
It seems to have been done in Kurdistan. Maybe it'll work in Iraq as a whole...
"If they have a good government with Islamic democracy and without any special or divine rights for the clergy, the Iranian government won't be able to justify its situation to the Iranian citizens," the 45-year-old philosophy professor added.
Which is why they're determined it's going to fail...
His views echoed those of Iran's leading clerical dissident Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, who told Reuters last month that Iraq should learn from Iran's experience and not allow clerics to take a political role for which they are unqualified. After the Islamic revolution toppled the US-backed Shah in 1979 Iran erred by adopting the system of velayat-e faqih, or "rule of the Islamic jurisprudent," whereby a senior cleric, or supreme leader, was accorded ultimate power over all state matters, Kadivar said. "We replaced a kingdom with an Islamic kingdom," he said.
Goddammit. Every time I get on a role, expounding on how Islam is incapable of anything but rule by holy men and convoluted, self-contradictory logic, we have a day like today: Bahraini women demonstrating for their rights, Egyptians demonstrating against hereditary rule, the Kuwaitis on a serious Bad Guy hunt, the Kurds making the pseudosecular Turks look like conniving, brutal bastards, and Danish imams telling the Hizbis to piss off. Then we have this guy pop up, taking his life in his hands to express his opinions, and the opinions actually make sense and hold out hope for Iran, of all places. Good luck to him, and I will now attempt to return to my practice of actually thinking, rather than just reacting to the continuous steam of hackneyed cupidity and vitriol that's the normal day in the Muddle East.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Three years ago, as Rantburg and other sites really started disseminating information about Salafism, and before knowledge of it entered the mainstream, I Googled "wahabi" and came up with three or four pages of nothing but anti-wahabi websites (mostly Sufi and Shia would be my guess).

Shiite theologians had actually done a lot of work to try and reconcile Islam with modernity before the Shah fell. Even Khomeini's son has taken that position.

Most Germans and Japanese behaved pretty well after we rooted out the Nazis and militarists. Of course the Muslim world has other problems.

I think that besides Islam, the other real problem in the Middle East is the herd mentality. What tipped me off was the opinion polls. Results would keep coming back in the high 90's. No population is that homogenous in thought. When the pollsters arrive, _someone_ (mullah/sheikh/mukhabarat -- you pick) is putting the word out on the street to answer in such and such a way. We have to break the tribes. Only then does change come.
Posted by: 11A5S || 02/05/2005 1:00 Comments || Top||

#2  11A5S - Amen. Tribalism as a major root cause for grief (from corruption to jihadi support networks) is certainly spot-on, IMHO. One guy can make an entire region either a sanctuary - or a hotzone - as happened in this story yesterday - the only positive thing I've seen about tribes in years. Hell, I think all of Africa can be added to the M.E. as proof of your point. Being from the wrong side of the river, from one bend to the next, seems to be grounds for murder.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 1:14 Comments || Top||

#3  The reason the western world has advanced is because we have got rid of the tribalism . Every place the tribalist mentality flourishes is backwards and steeped in ignorance.
The US is the ultimate anti tribalist society. We are anti tribalism and pretty much anti class. That is why we are so far ahead of Europe. They still are very class based societies.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 3:13 Comments || Top||

#4  ...Europe. They still are very class based societiesSPoD, I would add: "...while they don't have much class to flaunt."
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 3:20 Comments || Top||

#5  Sobiesky, dear, you are such a New World snob! (Me, too, but dont't tell anyone)
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 8:55 Comments || Top||

#6  TW, I am not sure I am, if so, so be it, but considering that I lived in Europe for the first 30 years of my life, is it unreasonable to accept that I know my pappenheimers? :-)
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 9:11 Comments || Top||

#7  no tribalism? You've never seen an Oakland Raider home game, huh?
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 11:53 Comments || Top||

#8  You know Pappenheimers, I know Pfaffelhubers. I like to think we're the best kind of snob: those who are justified.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 12:02 Comments || Top||

#9  lol
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 12:05 Comments || Top||

#10  All I can tell you Frank G is look at that sheite hole Oakland. The state had to step in a run the bankrupt school system, It's the home of "ebonics" and Jerry Brown is the Mayor. Most people wearing Raiders jerseys are gang bangers, live in the Bario or getto. Tribalism at work.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 13:14 Comments || Top||


Iran Drops Case Against Ebadi
Iran's judiciary said yesterday it was not pursuing Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi, after investigations showed that a private complaint against her did not merit being taken to court. "The case was reviewed by the investigation department, and it turned out that the claim of insult was not valid. The investigator has decided to drop the case and Ebadi has been informed," Tehran's public prosecutor, Saeed Mortazavi, was quoted as saying by student news agency ISNA. In January, Ebadi said she had been summoned to appear before a branch of the feared Revolutionary Court to "provide some explanations" on her activities or else be arrested.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [378 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Passing as unsaid: the assumption that the "Revolutionary Court" has any right to call her on what she said in the first place.

Mind you, I'm not fond of what she said. But she has a right to say it, and the bozos on the court are fascist assholes.
Posted by: mojo || 02/05/2005 13:09 Comments || Top||

#2  this is what it looks like when Mullahs moonwalk
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 13:40 Comments || Top||

#3  Oh no! She's not veiled in that picture!!

Fifty lashes!!!
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 02/05/2005 23:13 Comments || Top||


Afghanistan/South Asia
Amnesty International Official Recounts Religious Strife in Pakistan
From the Pakistan Christian Post, answers given in an interview with Rehman Faiz, president of the Lahore unit of Amnesty International. He is active in promoting inter-faith dialogue in Pakistan and is the editor of the recently launched inter-faith journal Insight.

.... Things began to change in the late 1970s, when general Zia ul-Haq come to power and used a particular sect for promoting his own goals. He was supported in this by the USA and Saudi Arabia, which shared common interests and objectives with the then Pakistani army establishment.

At exactly the same time, the Shia Islamic revolution took place in neighbouring Iran, which had a major influence on the Shia population of Pakistan as well. Meanwhile, the establishment's support for the Deobandi sect as a sort of official Islam led, as a reaction, to the formation of the Tehrik-e Nifaz-e Fiqh-e Jaffria(TNFJ)in April 1979, by the Shias of Pakistan under the joint initiative of Mufti Jafar Hussain and Allama Syed Mohammad Rizvi. In order to display its strength, the TNFJ organised a massive demonstration of Shias in Islamabad in July 1980. It was the first demonstration of its type by the Shias in the history of the country. Following this, the Anjuman Sipah-e Sahaba (later called the Sipah-e Sahaba Pakistan or SSP) was set up in 1984, with the support of the then Pakistani establishment, in order to counter the rising force of certain Shia groups, who were said to have been backed by the Iranian intelligence. The sympathy of many Shias towards the Bhutto family helped set off alarm bells in the higher circles of the Pakistani government. Equally worried were forces like the USA and Saudi Arabia.

Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, a semi-educated khateeb who had received his religious education at the Darul Uloom, Kabirwala and the Khair-ul Madaris, Multan, was the founder of the SSP. To begin with, the SSP was not a violent organization, but within a few years it merged as a brutal outfit, leading to a major escalation of Shia-Sunni violence. Outside forces also supported and funded Shia-Sunni discord to achieve their goals. This has been recognized by several Pakistani scholars themselves. The daily Nation, in a report published on 20 January, 1995,quoting a confidential report of the Home Department of Punjab, stating: "[Under Zia], the Saudi Government started backing the Deobandi school of thought and, in the wake of the Afghan war, supplied funds and arms to the Deobandis. Indirectly, the USA and a few other Western countries also supported the SSP to counter the growing Shia and Iranian influence in this region". ....

The Mohajir Qaumi Movement [later renamed as the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM)] was set up in the 1980s by Altaf Hussain in order to counter the activities of the Sindu Desh movement under the late G.M. Syed, as well as to undermine the popularity of Benazir Bhutto and her Pakistan People's Party (PPP). When the MQM went out of the control of the establishment during the first term of Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto (1988-90), the establishment tried to weaken Altaf Hussain's popularity amongst the Mohajirs by trying to divide the Sunni and Shia migrants from UP and Bihar. But after failing to do this, a splinter group of the MQM was set up, the MQM Haqiqi(Real)in order to counter the MQM.

The SSP was armed, and its activists were trained and then inducted into Afghanistan in order to fight against the Russians. Among other Deobandi jihadi organizations involved in the war against the Soviets in Afghanistan were the Harkat ul-Jihad al-Islami(HUJI) and the Harkat-ul Mujahideen (HUM), which are considered to be the offspring of the SSP. Likewise, the Jaish-e Mohammad (JEM), which was formed in 2000 through an apparent division in the HUM.

In 1988, the Iranian intelligence, it is said, encouraged the Shias of Gilgit in the Northern Areas to rise in revolt and demand the creation of a separate 'Karakoram' province for the Shias. General Zia inducted jihadi tribal hordes into Gilgit, where they carried out a large-scale massacre of the Shias. Moreover, the SSP of Punjab was allowed to open an office in Gilgit, to rally round the Sunnis in the area against the Shias. This resulted in the spread of sectarian terrorism to the Northern Areas, before which it had limited mainly to Punjab and the NWFP. Then, in 1994, Alaf Hussain's MQM re-organized itself in interior Sindh. To counter this, the SSP, which had been largely restricted to Punjab, was inducted into Sindh in order to reinforce the position of MQM (H). This resulted in the spread of sectarian terrorism to Sindh as well. ....

As far as the current government is concerned, it appears to have taken some solid steps in a positive direction, including proscription of violent sectarian groups and imprisonment of many of their activists. This is one of the outcomes of the decision of General Pervez Musharraf to take part in the US led 'war against terrorism'. The decision has totally changed Pakistan's foreign policy, which has also impacted on the way in which Pakistan relates to Afghanistan and Iran, besides also having a positive influence on India-Pakistan relations.

The current upsurge of sectarian violence, especially in Balochistan, does not seem related to any 'internal agenda' of the government. Such violence does not provide any strategic benefit to the government. On the contrary, it badly harms its own policy. To me it seems perhaps a result of the dejection that violent groups in Afghanistan and along the Pakistan-Afghan border are today facing. This may also be a reaction to what they see as Shia support to the USA, especially in Afghanistan and Iraq. Whatever the reason might be, it is the duty of the government of Pakistan to provide protection and security to all its citizens. Repeated violence of the same sort and at the same places clearly points to major loopholes in the governmental system and gross negligence, which need to be urgently addressed. .....

In 1947, there were around 245 madrasas in Pakistan. In April 2002, Dr. Mahmood Ahmed Ghazi, the Minister of Religious Affairs, put the number of madrasas in the country at 10,000, with some 1.7 million students. In an analysis paper for the Brookings Institution in 2001, P.W. Singer estimated the number of madrasas in the country at 45,000.
However, if we look at the other side of things, we do have a lot to be optimistic about, such as the positive intentions of the current government and the emerging support for peace among many young Pakistanis. ....

Madrasas have played a major role in the rise of Shia-Sunni sectarian intolerance in Pakistan. In 1947, there were around 245 madrasas in Pakistan. In April 2002, Dr. Mahmood Ahmed Ghazi, the Minister of Religious Affairs, put the number of madrasas in the country at 10,000, with some 1.7 million students. In an analysis paper for the Brookings Institution in 2001, P.W. Singer estimated the number of madrasas in the country at 45,000, although he did not cite any source for this.

Both Shias and Sunnis have their own separate madrasas. Since the Sunnis form the majority of the population of Pakistan, Sunni madrasas are far more numerous. Among the Sunnis, the three major maslaks (schools of thought), the Deobandis, the Barelvis and the Ahl-e Hadith (Salafis), as well as the Jama'at-e Islami, have their own separate madrasas. The number of madrasas in the country increased rapidly during General Zia ul-Haq's rule (1977-1988). In the course of the war in Afghanistan against the Soviets, the United States sent in money, arms and ammunition to Afghan fighters, and much of this found its way to several madrasas. The Saudi organization, Harumain Islamic Foundation, is said to have generously helped the Ahl-e Hadith, because of which it emerged as a powerful force. The Lashkar-e Taiba, an organization that had been active in fighting in Afghanistan and Kashmir, is associated with the Ahl-e Hadith. In recent years, the influence of the Deobandis has also increased, as the Taliban were trained in their seminaries. It should be remembered that the number of Deobandi madrasas is the highest, and they are thought to be the basic source of manpower and resources for anti-Shia vehemence in Pakistan. ....

Except for a very small minority, there are no social differences between common Shias and Sunnis. Hence, one can confidently claim that Shia-Sunni conflict is limited to a fraction of the ulema and some of their followers, and that it is not widespread and deep-rooted among the common people. ....

In the early 1980s incidents of sectarian violence occurred primarily in the interior of Punjab, especially in the areas of Jhang, Multan, Bahawalpur, and Muzaffar Garh, etc.. However, with the passage of time it spread to other major cities such as Lahore, Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Quetta and Sargodha. There have also been incidents of Shia-Sunni violence in Peshawar, Gilgit and Karachi. Today, the areas of acute sensitivity are Quetta, Jhang, Lahore, Faisalabad, Multan and Bahawalpur. .....
This article starring:
HAQ NAWAZ JHANGVISipah-e Sahaba Pakistan
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 9:16:55 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [296 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Veeerrrry interesting! Thanks, Mike S.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 22:22 Comments || Top||


Pakistani Moslems Debate With Pakistani Christians About Religion
From the Pakistan Christian Post
.... The Story of Hanifan Bibi starts when on evening of 12th Jan 2005 Sharing Life Ministry Pakistan (SLMP) come to know through Mr. Joseph Francis, Coordinator CLAAS, that some Christian were taken to the General Hospital being seriously injured. The Sharing Life Ministry Pakistan team reached General Hospital and met Pervaiz Kala Masih 25, Kala Surjan Masih 58, Hanifan Bibi W/O Kala Masih 55 and Kashif Aslam Masih 17, who were seriously injured, sobbing and crying. Hanifan Bibi was very seriously injured. Her face was swollen and dark blue, red spots on her face were visible. Her back, buttock and ribs were seriously injured and swollen. She was weeping bitterly and heaving sighs. She was beaten brutally with bats and iron pipes.

Aslam Masih told "Hanifan bibi had been working in Saeedan Batni's house in Iqbal town as a maid servant. On 10th Jan. 2005, Saeedan Batni with Mohammad Baber, Mohammad Amjaad, Mohammad Rashid in car # LRB-5259 and other car was without # plate came to Hanifan's house. They broke the door of Hanifan Bibi's house and took Hanifan Bibi, Pervaiz Masih, Kashif Masih and Kala Masih to an unknown place. Moreover, Aslam said, " After two days we saw the car # LRB 5259 in the police station in which Kashif Masih, Hanifan Bibi, Kala Masih and Pervaiz Masih were kidnapped." He said, " When we went to the police station Factory Area, Cantt. Lahore, we saw gangsters who kidnapped their dear ones were sitting with Mohammad Shahid Iqbad (Member Provincial Assembly) taking tea with SHO.

Kashif Aslam Masih told Sharing Life Ministry Pakistan team " When we were taken to some unknown place, our eyes were kept closed with a piece of cloth, we were kept closed in an unknown place. There were empty wine bottles in a large number. Some heavy physique gangsters were present there. Moreover, 16,17 young girls were also sitting over there. I came to know later that four/five girls were Christians". Kashif told that " my clothes were taken off, they hanged me by tying my feet with cord and turned my body upside down on the ceiling. Those cruel people started beating me with hot iron pipe. While Pervaiz and Kala were beaten with sticks, pipe and bats. They kicked us very brutally and cruelly."

Kashif told SLMP team "when they were beating Hanifan bibi, they were continuously saying that she did not bring Christian girls so this was her punishment. We would implicate you in the case of stealing and you would be sent to jail. Sometimes, they said, "If you would ask your family members to arrange for 4 hundred thousand rupees, then you would get rid of this torture". Kashif told (weeping bitterly) "they put red chilies on the wooden stick and inserted in the anus." "I got severe injuries on my sex organs." Kashif Masih told SLMP team that "kidnappers burnt my body with hot iron."

Hanifan Bibi told Sharing Life Ministry Pakistan's team that those cruel people took off my clothes in front of my husband, son and nephew. They put bottle of wine on my lips and said " take this wine" they took off my clothes and made movie and took photographs". "They beat me with wooden stick and rods very cruelly; they kept us hungry and thirsty for two days." "They took us to police station to implicate us in the case of stealing."
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 9:02:53 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [284 views] Top|| File under:


Al-Qaeda still active in Pakistan, wotta surprise
Elements of al Qaeda remain in Pakistan, a senior U.S. defense official said Thursday, adding that unless more was done to stop the flow of recruits into militant groups the war on terror would never be won. U.S. Undersecretary for Defense Douglas Feith, in Pakistan for talks on security and defense issues, said disrupting and destroying terrorist networks was not enough. "We also have to address the flow of people into the ranks of the terrorists organizations," he told a news conference after talks with Pakistani defense officials in the garrison city of Rawalpindi adjoining Islamabad. "If we don't stop that flow of people into the ranks of terrorist groups, then we are never going to win the war."

But hundreds of al-Qaeda militants are still hiding in Pakistan's mountains bordering Afghanistan and in major cities. Feith said the Pakistani government was focused and quite active in tracking and pursuing the remnants of al Qaeda, including those groups that fled from Afghanistan. But he added: "To win the war, we have to deny terrorists what they need to operate, we have to deny them what they need to survive."

Feith said Islamabad's long-running effort to acquire more F-16 fighter aircraft from the United States was being considered. It was one of many issues discussed Thursday. "Pakistan has been developing various ideas about its priorities in defense trade," he said. Pakistan's Defense Secretary Hamid Nawaz Khan earlier told reporters the two sides had made tangible progress on many issues. He did not give any details. "There is a lot of hope in the air," Khan said. The Pentagon notified the U.S. Congress in November of three proposed arms sales to Pakistan worth $1.2 billion, including eight P-3C Orion surveillance aircraft Islamabad says would be used in the hunt for militants on its border with Afghanistan. In June, Washington declared Pakistan to be a major non-NATO ally, making easier for it to acquire U.S. arms.
Posted by: Dan Darling || 02/05/2005 5:50:18 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [281 views] Top|| File under:


Terror Networks & Islam
Jihad Unspun's Literature Awards -- First Prize
A story titled Madrassa-e-Yusufiye, by Biju Abdul Qadir

He re-read the paragraphs that he had scribbled down one last time.

Arabic had never been his particular strength. At least, not in the way that English was. Sadly, to Max's thinking, this was despite the fact that he had just missed being born in a nation that had Arabic as its mother tongue; despite the fact that he had almost all the happiest memories of his childhood and upbringing in a country that wholly belonged to a culture that is, and a people who still are, out and out Arab; despite the fact that his neighbourhood friends and their families with whom he mingled and lived in those wonderful growing up years were all Arabs or Arab expatriates living in the United Arab Emirates. There were Palestinians, Egyptians, Jordanians and even Somalis, he remembered. All of them Arabs who, with their innate sense of hospitality and brotherhood, made him feel for the land where he grew up as if it were his second home: his home away from home; who made him feel that the faces that sat around him now rocking in the now-violent, now-gentle motion of the train on its rails represented the poorer half of humanity: poorer for all the warmth and hospitality that was, to the Arabs he had known, second nature.
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 3:08:35 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [289 views] Top|| File under:


Jihad Unspun's Literature Awards -- Second Prize
A poem titled Abu Ghraib, by Ben Younes Majen

In Abu Ghraib prison
Pervert soldiers gathered
For an orgy of human flesh
Iraqi detainees enduring masochism
American and British sadism
Will launch a spectral war
By those with inhuman dusty minds
resting on their beastiality

* * *

The sex starved G.I's
And debauched homo-generals
Like white sharks
Dressesd as a doves
for playful lesbians
Rattling the bars of inner cages
Scars inflicted by the neo-devils
reflect the smiling faces of evil
Iraq is no longer a living souls
Dead, buried and degraded by the ghouls

The poem continues.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 2:50:45 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [441 views] Top|| File under:

#1  homo-general? Is that above, or below, brigadier?
Posted by: BH || 02/05/2005 20:29 Comments || Top||

#2  Is it true you work for the State Department, Mikey? If so, do you think you should be quite so anti-American?
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 20:35 Comments || Top||

#3  Someone here suggested that Condi should take a broom to the State Dept. I think a fire hose would be better. And if MS (damn appropriate initials, BTW) really does work there, she should start with his office.
Posted by: PBMcL || 02/05/2005 22:38 Comments || Top||

#4  A flamethrower would be even better!
Posted by: CrazyFool || 02/05/2005 22:58 Comments || Top||

#5  Hey, this stuff is better than what most English professors put out...
Posted by: Pappy || 02/05/2005 23:24 Comments || Top||

#6 
Re #3 (PBMcL) Condi should take a broom to the State Dept. .... If MS (damn appropriate initials, BTW) really does work there, she should start with his office.

I have two jobs. I work in the administration of a home-health-care business in Hackensack, NJ. And I work as a self-employed translator, translating mostly documents for the US Department of Justice's Office of Special Investigations.

I never worked in the State Department. I was in the US Air Force from 1978 to 1992, separating in the rank of major. Then I worked as a self-employed translator. I began working also in the home-health-care business in January 2003.

When I was in college I applied to work in the State Department. I passed the written test, was interviewed, and was not selected. That's as close as I got.
.
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 23:33 Comments || Top||

#7 
Hey, this stuff is better than what most English professors put out...

LOL.
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 23:34 Comments || Top||


Jihad Unspun's Literature Work of the Day
A story titled There Once Was A Great False God Called America!, by Lewis Attiyatallah.
..... The location is Afghanistan in the spring of 1634 H and the author endeavors to reflect how history will view the events of our times.

SCENE 1

Students of knowledge sitting around their Sheikh after Asr Salaah. A respectable sheikh with a black turban, he sits with his big white beard giving him the appearance of awe and majesty. The sheikh said: Praise be unto Allah, and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon our prophet Muhammad, upon his family and all his companions and those who befriend him, the following:

Read! Oh Omar bin Ahmed bin Lewis bin Attiyatallah.

He praises Allah and then reads. "The author of the book (Encyclopedia of false idols) said: Under the chapter Alif, (America)...and some (in Arabic writing) brought forward the Yaa' before the Raa':

The author said: It has been told to us...that behind the great ocean there once was a false God called (America). .... To create her, they brought slaves from Africa, builders from China and scientists from all around the world. She eventually became so great and famous and all knew of her, that she eventually became worshipped on this earth as an idol besides Allah. People worshipped her out of fear and want.

We have also been told that if she became angry at anyone, she would send bolts of fire from her land and she would destroy that land and burn their crops and offspring. If she was pleased with anyone she would shower him with money, women, wine, and worldly delights which words cannot describe. There were also those who worshipped her out of love, adoration and godliness.

[snip]
Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 2:47:56 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [286 views] Top|| File under:


With Islam We Fight Terrorism (Not ScrappleFace)
Some non-Muslims, especially those who do not know the basic principles and teachings of Islam, may wonder about the title of this article as Islam has been wrongly used as a synonym for terrorism and most Westerners consider Muslims terrorists. Actually, Islam has nothing to do with terrorism. Terrorism is an international phenomenon and is found in every country and society. All divine religions have categorically rejected terrorism.
E pur se muove...
Terrorism briefly can be defined as aggression committed by individuals and groups or countries against people including their religions, intellect, honor and land. Terrorism and extremism are the products of wrong thinking. Socioeconomic factors as well as enmity also breed terrorists.
Terrorism briefly can be defined as systematic attacks against civilian and non-military government agencies with the intent of destabilizing society by inducing fear and uncertainty in the populace for the purpose of imposing the perpetrator's idea of how things should be. The attacks can include indiscriminate bombings and murder, but also robbery, rape, mob violence, intimidation and other crimes.
In this article I would like to focus on Islam, which has been unjustly described by those who are uninformed as a religion of violence and oppression.
That could be because Islam — or at least certain schools of it — is a violent and oppressive religion. If you're looking for a root cause, it's because Islam, alone among major religions, punishes words with actions, usually the imposition of a death sentence.
Actually, if we had learned its teachings as explained in the Holy Qur'an and Sunnah and practiced them in our lives there would be no terrorists in our midst.
But there are, so I guess you don't...

Continued on Page 49
Posted by: tipper || 02/05/2005 11:23:08 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [724 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Yeah, I know, but I couldn't resist, such a target rich environment after all.

Allah honored human life in general. Nobody is allowed to kill a man *without a genuine reason.*

-which allows them to kill innocent folks & then make up any reason for it they think is genuine.

"In this verse, Allah did not restrict his honor to Muslims, rather it covers all mankind."

-Time to put down the bong. De jour vs. de facto.

Allah has prohibited Muslims from abusing the deities being worshipped by other communities.

-I thought the Taliban were the most into the koran? I guess they screwed up when they torn down the statues then didn't they?

Islam respects all human beings despite the differences in their faiths and ideologies *as long as they do not attack Muslims.*

-Oh, so that explains it. *Attack* being the interpretive verb. If the islamo-nut feels that he's been verbally slandered by an infidel or psychologically tempted by western decadence he easily rationalizes it as an *attack* on islam and therefore must kill said infidels in order to restore face. I get it now. How stupid of me. Clear as mud.
Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 14:04 Comments || Top||

#2  This is the socio-religious pathology that muslims use to justify islamic terrorism. It simply calls terrorism just and names it self defense. It labels anyone or thing that looks at islam sideways as an attack on Islam. I got half way through and realised this was an apologia for islamic murder and gave up. You can't win and argument against this type of psychological pathology. The only way to treat it is to disinfect the host and sterilize the space they occupy.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 14:26 Comments || Top||

#3  A very well annotated antidote to the cherry-picked version of Islam, of which this article is typical.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 15:32 Comments || Top||

#4  Interesting .com. I can't pollute my closed mind with that religiosity even with the quite interesting annotation however. The islamoids will have to burn in hell by themselves.

I would rather spend my time looking a pictures of naked wemmins. I have a good enough grip on Islam. They want me dead for who I am, what I think and my unwillingness to submit. They hate my country and label it as a work of Satan. It's all I need to know. My self preservation mode is in operation against islam. I can put up with Christians telling me I am going to hell. They are not desirous or willing to hasten my death as a tenet of faith. Islams practitioners more than willing to kill for their perverted moon god cult.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 15:56 Comments || Top||

#5  Can't argue with a single word, bro. The link is probably best viewed as a reference for those who wish to fisk articles like this joke.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 16:29 Comments || Top||

#6  Thanks for the link .com, a good cliff note version if you will of contradictions most would never even venture to look for.
Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 17:38 Comments || Top||

#7  All mooslimbs may not be terrorists......but, all terrorists are mooslimbs.
Posted by: Tom Dooley || 02/05/2005 21:05 Comments || Top||


Israel-Palestine
PA to declare cease-fire next week
The Palestinian Authority will announce a formal cease-fire with Israel at next week's summit in Sharm e-Sheikh, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) said Thursday. Abbas is expected to hold a series of meetings over the next few days with senior PA and Fatah officials to prepare for the summit. Many Palestinians here expressed hope that the summit would mark the beginning of a new era in relations with Israel. "The most important thing is to secure the release of all the prisoners held in Israel," said a top Fatah official.
I'd say the most important thing is to stop killing people. That's how those beauzeaux got to be in prison in the first place. Any release should be the very last occurrance...
"The people want to see real changes on the ground, and such a step would restore their confidence in the peace process. It will also boost Abu Mazen's status." But a newspaper editor cautioned against "excessive optimism," saying it was premature to talk about a major breakthrough.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 9:20:23 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [270 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Today it's a ceasefire. Two days ago Abbas said "Jerusalem will again belong to the Muslims". I guess he's planning some miraculous negotiations.
http://rantburg.com/poparticle.asp?HC=&D=2/3/2005&ID=55476
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 10:47 Comments || Top||

#2  I think he's got two sides to his mouth and speaks out both of them, sometimes simultaneously.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 10:48 Comments || Top||

#3  Cease fire #897.
Posted by: gromgorru || 02/05/2005 10:56 Comments || Top||

#4  Zionist tool gromgorru exaggerates, it's ceasefire 648 according to the lunar calendar.
Posted by: Shipman || 02/05/2005 12:51 Comments || Top||

#5  The Palestinian Authority will announce a formal cease-fire with Israel at next week's summit..

Would it be too much to ask for a permanent cessation of hostilities? Or is that something beyond Paleo ability?
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 02/05/2005 15:51 Comments || Top||

#6  Ship - he's counting the Hudnas too
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 16:08 Comments || Top||

#7 
Posted by: Sompon Phinthusontron4572 || 02/05/2005 16:12 Comments || Top||


Mishaal: Calming down depends on "Israel's" readiness to meet Palestinian conditions
The Hamas Movement could positively deal with a truce if and when the Zionist entity released all Palestinian prisoners interned in the Zionist jails and halted its aggressions on the Palestinians, said Khaled Mishaal, chairman of the Hamas Movement's political bureau. "Calming down isn't the major issue. It's only a step forward. The basic issue is that we should reach a stage at which we could end the occupation, stop the Israeli aggression, and realize the national project and all legitimate national rights," he added. "Realizing the truce depends on two main factors: The first is the Israeli position and readiness to meet the Palestinian terms. The second is the US administration's ability and/or readiness to pressure the Israeli party to abide by the Palestinian rights," he elaborated.

When asked about his attitude to the quartet summit to be held next Tuesday in the Egyptian winter resort of Sharm Al-Sheikh, he replied,"We look at such a summit meeting as a positive step. Of course, we still adhere to our permanent stance that the Zionist entity must set free all Palestinian captives and stop all forms of violence against our people. This all what we want, which is an expression of the Palestinian overall stand". Mishaal pointed out that the "Israeli" stance would be examined during that meeting, and affirmed that the Palestinian factions were only concerned with the Zionist entity's commitment to the Palestinian conditions to be put forward at that same summit. "As long as the Palestinian people didn't see a light looming in the horizon heralding that they would get rid of the occupation and regain their lands and looted rights, they would inevitably pursue resoluteness and resistance of the Zionist occupation," he pointed out.
Continued on Page 49
This article starring:
KHALED MISHAALHamas
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 9:15:10 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [292 views] Top|| File under:

#1  How about plan 'B'? That is, build a wall between us, and for every missile you lob over, we lob over accurate counter-battery fire? The neat part is that if you stop, we stop. Oh, and if you touch the wall, we kill you. If Paleos wish a right to return to where you live, fine and dandy. Don't be a stranger.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/05/2005 9:34 Comments || Top||

#2  How about Hamas proves it's capable of reining in the crazier sections of ther org before Israel concedes squat?

Just a thought.
Posted by: mojo || 02/05/2005 12:59 Comments || Top||

#3  How about Hamas proves it's capable of reining in the crazier sections of ther org before Israel concedes squat?

I got a better idea: how about a Hellfire enema for every member of Hamas.

Let's put them out of our misery, or have we forgotten they have declared war on the USA and have yet to resolve that war?
Posted by: badanov || 02/05/2005 15:32 Comments || Top||

#4  "Realizing the truce depends on two main factors: The first is the Israeli position and readiness to meet the Palestinian terms. The second is the US administration's ability and/or readiness to pressure the Israeli party to abide by the Palestinian rights," he elaborated.

Notice the complete lack of compromise on the part of the Paleos in that statement. It's all what the US and Israel have to do - no actions by the Paleos in this "deal" at all.

I'd say Plan B looks fine at this point.
Posted by: The Doctor || 02/05/2005 15:38 Comments || Top||

#5  Mishaal: Calming down depends on "Israel's" readiness to meet Palestinian conditions

Yawn.

How about Paleo action for once that has substance to it???
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 02/05/2005 16:11 Comments || Top||


PA minister says: Bush's efforts insincere
A Palestinian Authority official has predicted that US President George Bush's efforts to resolve the Palestinian-"Israeli" strife will fail.
Good chance of it. Hamas is going to do their best to make sure that happens...
Azmi Shueibi, PA Minister of Youth and Sport, said during a press interview Friday that Bush's efforts were insincere and motivated by parochial political considerations, not a genuine desire to force "Israel" to come to terms with Palestinian rights. "I think he is only trying to give the impression that he is doing something about the conflict. But I don't think he is sincere. We have to remember that Bush is the first American president to lend legitimacy to Israeli Jewish-only settlements and say that Palestinian refugees have no right to return to their homes."
Also the first American president to come out in favor of a Paleostinian homeland, but we won't go into that...
Shueibi said Bush was speaking in abstract and vague terms about democracy in the Middle East and Palestinian statehood.
Sounded neither abstract nor vague to me, Bub...
"If he is truly honest and truly serious about peace, he should force Israel to carry out UN resolutions." Bush in his State of the Union Address Wednesday night made no mention of the "Israeli" occupation of the Palestinian homeland although he said he reasserted his commitment to the creation of a Palestinian state. Bush said he would ask Congress for $350 to the Palestinian Authority to help bolster the government of PA President Mahmoud Abbas. However, Shuebi said "money alone" wouldn't help Abbas. "Even if they gave him all the money in the world, this wouldn't help him, because the problem here is the Israeli occupation of our homeland."
"Nobody suffers like we do!"

This article starring:
AZMI SHUEIBIPalestinian Authority
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 9:12:01 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [267 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Even if they gave him all the money in the world, this wouldn't help him, because the problem here is..." that major Palestinian powers view peace with Israel to mean extermination of Israel. Not only that, but Abbas is not what he appears to be. Remember his comment that "Jerusalem will again belong to the Muslims and worship will continue in Jerusalem until doomsday" of two days ago?
http://rantburg.com/poparticle.asp?HC=&D=2/3/2005&ID=55476
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 10:40 Comments || Top||

#2  PA Minister of Youth and Sport That would be the gentleman in charge of the summer terrorist training camps for children?
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 11:54 Comments || Top||


Africa: Horn
UN envoy: Darfur key to Sudan peace
Actually, I'd say Khartoum is the key to Sudan peace. If Darfur was the only place on fire, then Darfur would be the key. But Bashir splits his time between oppressing people and putting down rebellions. You'd almost think the two were connected or something.
A senior UN envoy has said a landmark peace agreement ending Sudan's two-decade-old war in the south will crumble if violence in Darfur persists. Jan Pronk, the UN special envoy in Sudan, urged the UN Security Council on Friday to approve his request for 10,000 troops and 755 police to enforce the new north-south peace deal, which would change the structure of the Khartoum government and army.
That would be point zero, I'd guess. Everything else that would happen would come after that. And nothing else will come until that's done...
But he said: "I am convinced that without a solution in Darfur, the north-south will not remain a sustainable peace agreement." Pronk and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan have urged the Security Council to adopt one resolution on the peacekeepers as well as the Darfur crisis, where pro-government militia have looted, killed and raped and made two million people homeless.
I dunno. I think that, rather than peacekeepers like they have in DRC, an army of occupation might be more to the point. They obviously are incapable of keeping their own house in order.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 9:06:16 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [266 views] Top|| File under:

#1  No, no, no! Justice for the Palestinians is the KEY to Sudan peace!
Posted by: gromgorru || 02/05/2005 11:01 Comments || Top||

#2  Ya know, we really haven't tested the MOAB in a simulated combat situation yet. Wonder if one can be strapped under the belly of a B-2? I know it's too big for the bomb bay. Maybe a fleet of C17s, escorted by F/A-18s, could drop a couple dozen on Khartoum. I'd bet the fighting in the south and in Darfur would end REALLY quickly after that...
Posted by: Old Patriot || 02/05/2005 15:40 Comments || Top||

#3  10,000 troops and 755 police?! Where are these people to come from?
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 22:24 Comments || Top||

#4  Two guesses.
Posted by: Dave D. || 02/05/2005 22:43 Comments || Top||


Israel-Palestine
Abbas talks with Fatah before summit
Palestinian Authority chief Mahmud Abbas has held talks with the revolutionary council of his Fatah faction, days before the Palestinian leader meets Israeli prime minister. Abbas on Saturday conducted talks with more than 100 members of his Fatah party, and a top aide said the aim of the summit on Tuesday was to declare a mutual ceasefire between Palestinians and Israelis. "The revolutionary council of Fatah is holding an important meeting in the presence of Abu Mazin (Abbas) to discuss the summit, political and security questions and the results of contacts with Israel," said Palestinian Authority spokesman Nabil Abu Rudaina.

"We intend to work so that a mutual ceasefire can be declared between the Palestinians and Israelis at the Sharm al-Shaikh summit," he said. "We are also demanding the liberation of 8000 Palestinian prisoners held by Israel and hope to be able to sort out the differences in this respect in 48 hours," he added.
This article starring:
NABIL ABU RUDAINAPalestinian Authority
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 8:57:33 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under:


Palestinians Seek Release of More Prisoners
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [412 views] Top|| File under:

#1  finish the wall and then release more - see how they actually like the thugs back in circulation
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 0:05 Comments || Top||

#2 
ignore the attention whore Syria can't feel that comfortable with the US and Israel on either side, and Israeli jets doing flybys over the capital and palace. Time to ratchet up the pressure and get the Baathists uncomfortable.;-) May can't come too soon. cue porn music: twangy guitar and bass nice picture - what is that? the Hokey Pokey? I got ya big dragon head, right here, Ali, ya big pussy the Islamists didn't come for democracy, LH. I seriously doubt they think that a Jew should have a say in their view of desired societal change, and all you wymens with uncovered ankles....cover up or else! looked like sarcasm to me, Dan out on DVD april 5th - plunk down the cash PD! it's tough to get back into the Juche-mood....possibly spring training needed great choice as visa guy...idjits. Time to clean house with a broom, Condi nope, AP - I bet Joooooo occupation of the oppressed innocent Paleos does, tho' as an unemployed gigolo I'd appreciate any references.... liked him a lot in "Outlaw Josey Wales" as well.... good actor and sounds like a good man as well. RIP I hope they don't fire him for his stupid free speech usage. Fire him for his doctored resume, fine. Firing him for his speech will only make him a martyr, when he should be the object of scorn and ridicule and when's the last time you did that on the battlefield, you ignorant backassward coward? Kinky's a kick. I saw this on Imus, and the great Asleep at the Wheel played as well.... I hope he goes and puts them on the spot. If they try to arrest him, it'll be the end of NATO and US protection over Germany. End the bases there. flaming bags o'dog poop every couple nights
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 0:23 Comments || Top||

#3  The red-headed stepchild of RB begs for more attention - on Fred's dime.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:28 Comments || Top||

#4  Sounds more like someone fed some of yesterday's posts into a Markov Chain program.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 02/05/2005 0:32 Comments || Top||

#5  Palestinians urged Israel yesterday to expand a prisoner release to ensure the success of the forthcoming summit as Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon accused the Palestinians of doing little to combat “terror.”

Lemme see here. Israel greets unilateral Palestinian demands with a flat turndown. Quite obviously Sharon's brain is still firing on all cylinders. "Demands" are usually accompanied with concomitant concessions. No concessions, no demands met. I realize this is difficult for the Palestinians to comprehend but reality is full of niggling little details like this.

Israel disappointed the Palestinian leadership by refusing to include those jailed for deadly attacks among the 900 prisoners whom Prime Minister Sharon and top Cabinet ministers agreed on Thursday to release in a goodwill gesture.

Israel didn't "disappoint" anyone. The Palestinians, as usual, set themselves up for failure by making unrealistic demands. Asking that known killers be released to commit even more mayhem really doesn't count as a noticeable bargaining chip unless it is accompanied by significant concessions towards making a lasting peace. This is nowhere apparent.

Meanwhile, Sharon said in a telephone conversation with his Norwegian counterpart Kjell Magne Bondevik yesterday, “The Palestinian side hasn’t done a thing except to deploy its forces in Gaza before taking significant steps in the war on terror.”

Sufficient reason not to release a whole bunch of skilled combatants.

BIG CLUE: The Palestinians should stop insisting upon major Israeli gestures without providing substantive moves on their own part. Otherwise, continued fence building and more targeted hits upon terror leaders will remain the norm. Logic is such a cast iron b!tch.
Posted by: Zenster || 02/05/2005 0:33 Comments || Top||

#6 
Speaking of attention whores, check out this thread, #79 and #88.
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 0:34 Comments || Top||

#7  I like #89, myself, asshole.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:42 Comments || Top||

#8  "reality is full of niggling little details like this"

Lol, Zen! They never do, and never will, get it. Only one of the two populations will come out of this alive, unless some serious magic occurs in Paleoland, IMHO.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:45 Comments || Top||

#9  Mike Sywester, what's the problem? Your usual posts are much more sensible.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 1:08 Comments || Top||

#10  tw - I beg to differ.

Mikey has 2 sides. 1) I don't like jihadis - and his posts in that vein are simplistic and uninformed. 2) I love the UN - and his posts in that vein are blind dogma - again insubstantial, pointless, uninformative. People who have a link they believe substantiates an argument, yet still post the entire text from that link - you recognize Mikey's MO in this description right?, as if volume make the point, are bandwidth hogs, attention whores, and trolls.

He's a troll - absolutely and clearly proven in the link he gave and in this thread, today. He brings zero substance to RB.

No offense meant to you - and thank you for your attention. ;-)
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 1:21 Comments || Top||

#11  I'm beginning to think Mike S. has been talking with Tony Forresta. And their AFDB's were left at home.
Posted by: Attaboid || 02/05/2005 1:35 Comments || Top||

#12  ignore the attention whore, sez Mikey in #2.

I'll be glad to oblige, Mikey.

Back to the topic.
Back before an utterly shitty day in 2001 I was known as Mr. Nice Guy, you just won't believe how nice. Since then, as Desert Blondie correctly recognized, I'm a Bad Man. (I still assume that was meant as a compliment! :-P)
Not that I was librul before, I were not. But one may say that on that shitty day, I was mugged, albeit in a symbolical fashion. This is just a backdrop from which my opinions are formed.

Baleos want prisoners returned? I would oblige, but with "Ooops, there has been a terrible accident" kinda routine, as the jihad-minded convicts would be already assuming the room temp, before handing them over.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 2:25 Comments || Top||

#13  Mike S.,"Your'a Ramblin man".
Posted by: Raptor || 02/05/2005 8:13 Comments || Top||

#14 
Re # (.com) bandwidth hogs, attention whores ... He brings zero substance to RB.

Everybody take a look at this thread, #88.
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 8:50 Comments || Top||

#15  "Everybody take a look at this thread, #88."

Why?
Posted by: Dave D. || 02/05/2005 9:26 Comments || Top||

#16  Dave, dunno. maybe Mikey's imaginary friends are there?
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 9:30 Comments || Top||

#17  Cadddie! Caddy! Cadddddie!
Posted by: Snipe Westercile || 02/05/2005 11:50 Comments || Top||

#18  as usual, MS posts someone else's words and opinions without offering his own. Kofi's butt boy
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 12:00 Comments || Top||

#19 

They Palestinian want convicted killers released. I doubt that is about to happen. They need to get over it.

As far as bandwidth sucking attention whores go. I pay my own way. I suggest that someone else do the same and use the Amazon or PayPal links. Better yet FOAD.

Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 12:04 Comments || Top||

#20  Daaaaissssyyyy Daaaaisssssyyyyyy giiiiive meeeeeeeee annnnnnn aaaaannnnsssweeerrrr dooooooooooo ...
Posted by: Syke Milwester || 02/05/2005 12:07 Comments || Top||

#21  At least Aris posts his own thoughts, Mike.
Isn't there something around the State Department that you can do to undermine American efforts around the globe, or don't they let you anywhere near the important stuff?
Posted by: Desert Blondie || 02/05/2005 13:25 Comments || Top||

#22  State Detartment? I thought he was on support staff for Kojo!
Posted by: Tom || 02/05/2005 13:32 Comments || Top||

#23 
As far as bandwidth sucking attention whores go .... FOAD.

I sure hope, SPOD, that .com takes your hint.
.
Posted by: Cleamp Ebbereling9443 || 02/05/2005 13:49 Comments || Top||

#24  Kids, kids, let's calm down here, 'k?
Posted by: Steve White || 02/05/2005 13:51 Comments || Top||

#25  ah c'mon dad! we wuz only funning!
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 13:54 Comments || Top||

#26  Well, this looks like just the latest instance of the Paleo habit of trying to induce the Israelis to do everything, while the Paleos themselves do little or nothing.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 02/05/2005 15:57 Comments || Top||

#27  Well BAR it is the islamiod way.
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 02/05/2005 16:02 Comments || Top||

#28  Caddy! Caddy? Caaaaddddddddddddeeeeeeeee!
Posted by: Snipe Westercile || 02/05/2005 16:38 Comments || Top||

#29  And they were eating their lunch, 'cause they
had little (wuz they premium salties?)lunch sacks, and they were drinking coke. The
main reason I remember 'em is, (youse paying me) after the last shot (BANG!) I
recall hearing and the car went down under the triple (good surgeons there)underpass there, I heard a crash of glass, and I looked
over there, and the kids had thrown down their coke
bottles, and commenced to jitter like in them UN moviesjust threw them down and just started running (ole black keds down fail me now)
towards the back and I ... Of course, I don't see
anything unusual in that because everybody else was
running that way, 'cause when I look over on my left
side, the people on the hill were all running back the
same way too.
Posted by: Sitzman || 02/05/2005 16:56 Comments || Top||

#30  At least Aris posts his own thoughts, Mike.

Spot on, DB.
Posted by: Zenster || 02/05/2005 23:59 Comments || Top||


Iraq-Jordan
Turkey Warned Not to Intervene in Iraq
A leading Iraqi Kurd told Turkey it had no right to meddle in Iraq's affairs and said any military intervention by Ankara aimed at stalling the creation of a Kurdish state would end in "disaster".

Turkey has expressed alarm at what it sees as a drive by the Kurds of northern Iraq to cement their autonomy and possibly to seek full independence from Baghdad. Ankara fears such moves could reignite separatism among the Kurds of southeast Turkey. Turkey is especially concerned that the Kurds may wrest control of the oil-rich city of Kirkuk at the expense of local Arabs and Turkish-speaking Turkmen. It has said it reserves the right to take unspecified action to protect its interests.

"Turkey should not intervene in our domestic affairs. The result of such an intervention would be a disaster for all parties," Masoud Barzani, head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party, told CNN Turk in an interview late on Thursday. Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and other senior officials have stepped up their criticism of the Kurds since last Sunday's historic elections in Iraq, saying Ankara could not stand idly by if Kirkuk fell into Kurdish hands.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [274 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "...Ankara could not stand idly by if Kirkuk fell into Kurdish hands."

Lol. Of course you can - and you will. You are not party to the situation in Iraq, Period. Full stop. Attend to your own affairs - stop trying to distract your citizen with this canard - they require your attention.

And, BTW, if the Kurds (which inhabit a rather sizable chunk of Turkey) chose to join their fellow Kurds in a new Kurdistan, well that would be peachy with most freedom-loving people. And your old empire would shrink a bit more. Life's a bitch, sometimes.

The Kurds have survived and maintained their identity under someone's boot-heel for 500 years. I'm beginning to think they are the most deserving group in all of the Middle East to get a shot at freedom and self-rule. And Kirkuk is definitely part of the majority Kurdish areas.

Sucks to be Turkey, today. Pissed away all of their goodwill, NATO capital, and US tolerance for a pig in a poke with France. Great job there, Tayyip. My sympathy reservoir is utterly dry.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:24 Comments || Top||

#2 
The Kurds have survived and maintained their identity under someone's boot-heel for 500 years.


Longer, I believe. I read Xenephon's "March of the Ten Thousand" a few years ago, and at one point they had to walk through a mountainous area between the Euphrates plain and the Black Sea while being constantly harassed by fiercely independent, rather nasty locals. Not Islamic Kurds, but I'd bet they're ancestors.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 02/05/2005 0:31 Comments || Top||

#3  RC - Prolly right, bro. I dug up an authoritative timeline for them once (lost in 2 computer changes since, sigh) which showed that for more than 500 yrs they had been a continuous homogeneous population under the name of Kurds - so that was why I used that line. Truly a remarkable march through history to have maintained their identity as they have. And what they do with their freedom (under the no-fly zones, for instance) is very impressive. I'm amazed by them, considering everything they're endured.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:41 Comments || Top||

#4  com, Kurds are descendands of Medes, a north-western iranic folk related to Circassians of Northern Caucasus. They have been established as an ethnicity already at about 1100 CE (Saladin/Salah al Din Yusuf Ibn Ayyub -- 1137–1193). So it is more than 5 centuries, at least 9.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 2:40 Comments || Top||

#5  Thanx, Sobiesky - I should have used Saladin as an anchor as it's an acknowledged fact he was a Kurd. Duh. Thanx, bro!
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 3:26 Comments || Top||

#6  Everyone thinks this Turkish anti-Kurd bandwagon is being pulled by the Islamist government but fail to recognize the influence here of the Armed Forces. Yes, there has been some reform such as taking away the automatic parliment seats to senior officers but the AF are still the real deal in Turkey even if it is pro-western, part of Nato and trying to get into the EU. To think that the AF in Turkey will sink back into political obscurity is to ignore their constant presence in stabilizing this country to the secular middle. It would not suprise me to see them back in the main picture soon if this kind of crap keeps up.
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 02/05/2005 6:22 Comments || Top||

#7 
The Kurds could relieve some of this tension by improving their relationships with the Turkmen in the area. One of Turkey's major concerns is to protect their own ethnic relatives in Iraq.
.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 02/05/2005 8:45 Comments || Top||

#8  As usual, I suspect deeper meanings. Please note the *value* of the occassional Turkish mumbled threat: it is a continual pressure for the Kurds to remain part of a federal Iraq, a de facto Kurdistan, rather than having the emotional gratification of being a de jure Kurdistan, and having the enmity of Sunni and Shia Iraq, Turkey, Syria, *and* Iran. In other words, who benefits from this Turkish threat? The U.S.; *and* the saner heads among the Kurds who understand the value of federalism; *and* the Turks, who now value the Kurds as their second largest trading partner after Europe. It also keeps the Kurds in Syria, Turkey and Iran from going into open revolt in the hopes of breaking off their lands to join a greater Kurdistan, as onerous an idea as was greater Serbia 20 years ago.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 02/05/2005 8:50 Comments || Top||

#9  Interesting point, Mike S.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/05/2005 11:43 Comments || Top||

#10  an actual opinion by MS! And a true one at that! Omens and Portents™ to be sure....
Posted by: Frank G || 02/05/2005 11:57 Comments || Top||

#11  I concur Mike, that sounds like a logical ajenda for the Turks. Especially since borders between nations in that region IIUC are more permeable & not seen the same as borders in western countries. Or, it's just a ploy for a casus belli for the underlying economic situation. Or, maybe legitimately both?
Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 12:14 Comments || Top||

#12  I wouldn't dissmiss the Turkish concerns too quickly. If they say they will do something, they mean it. Secondly, from what I have read, the Kurds haven't exactly treated the Christians in Norther Iraq with much kindness or respect.
Posted by: Phitle Phearong2964 || 02/05/2005 16:29 Comments || Top||


Tater demands date for US pullout
Found some more cannon fodder for his army, has he?
Iraqi Shia leader Moqtada al-Sadr has called on his community's senior religious leaders to insist on a timeline for a US troop withdrawal. "This is a message from Sayid Muqtada. I call on all religious and political powers that pushed towards the elections and took part in them to issue an official statement calling for a timetable for the withdrawal of the occupation forces from Iraq," Sayid Hashim Abu Raghif told worshippers gathered for Friday prayers in the Shia city of Kufa.
"Helmut, speaking for Boskone! Out!"
Al-Sadr, who earlier belittled last week's vote, said he would no longer refrain from commenting on political developments in Iraq after keeping quiet for months, according to a statement Abu Raghif read from al-Sadr to thousands of worshippers.
This article starring:
MOQTADA AL SADRMahdi Army
SAIID HASHIM ABU RAGHIFMahdi Army
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [384 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I like this picture of Mooky better:

Posted by: Robert Crawford || 02/05/2005 0:22 Comments || Top||

#2  Lol - an easy move, but oh so effective, lol!
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:26 Comments || Top||

#3  Why isn't this maggot dead yet?
Posted by: Zenster || 02/05/2005 0:38 Comments || Top||

#4  I recall Sistani jumped back on the Jet of Peace and humped it back from London just in time to demand a truce - just before Tater and his few remaining thugs were to be rooted out of the Ali Baba & 40 Thieves Shrine in Najaf by Iraqi troops backed by Jarines and the 1st Air Cav. As far as I can tell, that's the only reason, heh.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:57 Comments || Top||

#5  Why is he demanding a date?

He's got plenty of time before we pull out of Iraq to find a date for the US Pullout (Party). Maybe he can call one of those Jordanian escort services?

I think its a ploy- he wants be seen as dateless, so he can ask Condi Rice out, rrrrwaarrrrhwrrrr!
Posted by: Simple.Green || 02/05/2005 1:52 Comments || Top||

#6  SG, I am not sure that Moockadoo demands a wench. He's got a tiny wiennie, so it's got to be something else. A date fruit perhaps?

Well, on the other hand, it may be somewhat related to libido... instead of a white raisin, a date is his fetish.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 2:03 Comments || Top||

#7  If I heard correctly, Tater's party drew well south of 1% of the vote in the election last week . . . making Tater the Pat Buchanan of Iraqi politics: "an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."
Posted by: Mike || 02/05/2005 7:09 Comments || Top||

#8  an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing

Caddy! Caddy! CADDDIE!
Posted by: Snipe Westercile || 02/05/2005 10:37 Comments || Top||

#9  Why is it that Tater sounds just like Kennedy, Polosi, and Reid? Maybe they are sending him talking (yipping) papers to work from.
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 02/05/2005 10:44 Comments || Top||

#10  STFU Tater, your a second string bush league day-shifter. You've got no stroke and don't call shit anymore. Go back to fondling goats and slappin' around your momma, that's about your speed, buffet jockey.
Posted by: Jeamp Ebbereting9472 aka Jarhead || 02/05/2005 12:06 Comments || Top||

#11  I don't think he's smart enough to be scared. He should be, though. Sistani and his crew ain't pushovers, and may just decide to quiet him down permanently. High "crossfire" potential. Bad accident prone...
Posted by: mojo || 02/05/2005 21:05 Comments || Top||

#12  mojo: Sistani and his crew ain't pushovers, and may just decide to quiet him down permanently.

Actually, I think Sistani and his crew *are* pushovers, which is why they need Uncle Sam around to keep Sadr boxed in.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 02/05/2005 23:39 Comments || Top||


Kurdish leader demands PM's post
Kurdish political leader Jalal Talabani announced he would seek the office of either president or prime minister when the new National Assembly convenes. Talabani, head of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, made the announcement at a joint news conference with the leader of the other main Kurdish faction, Massoud Barzani. Talabani and Barazani said the Kurds should get one of the two posts in the new elected Iraqi government. "We as Kurds want one of those two posts and we will not give it up," Talabani said.

Meanwhile, the chief UN envoy met with the leader of main Sunni political party yesterday, amid mounting efforts to convince the wary minority community to participate in the next government. Ashraf Qazi expressed the hope that parties which boycotted Sunday's polls, in particular Sunnis, would "participate in drawing up the constitution ... and our efforts will continue in this direction."
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under:

#1  And the Sunni Arabs at Gulf News down in Dubai, UAE, hope to whip up Iraqi Arab, both Sunni & Shi'a, opposition by shouting it from the proverbial rooftop - as if it's inappropriate. Second day running for this Kurd-scare bit - maybe they want to make better friends with the Turks at the same time. If the Kurd slate garnered the second or third highest vote total, as appears to be the case, then this is nothing more than the customary reward, one of the top posts. That it seems to hack the Sunni Arabs is merely icing, IMHO.

Wait and see what the vote total are, boyz, then live with the obvious results. It's called democracy, Arabs. Take a good look - you'll be seeing more of it around soon.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 1:38 Comments || Top||

#2  Here's da beef:
Preliminary results from 15% counted Iraqi election votes place Sistani’s United Iraq Alliance in 42% lead, followed by 34% for united Kurdish list and 20% for Allawi group. Of 8 million vote, 2 million cast by Kurds.

I am not surprised by the Kurdish share, but Allawi was estimated that he would take about 8%.
Well, it is still 85% of votes to be counted, so the number may change a bit, but I would like to see Allawi in the next government with a substantial portfolio, as his group with Kurds would make a nice counterballance to Shia dominance.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 4:34 Comments || Top||

#3  I am surprised by the Kurdish share. 34% of 8 mill votes is 2.7 mill. While all ethnic numbers from Saddam's Iraq are suspect. It indicates the Kurdish population is higher than commonly supposed. May also be substantial immigration from Turkey, Syria and Iran (which I strongly suspect).

The media always talks about shiias and Kurds as separate when in fact large numbers of Kurds are shiias (and all are either sunni or shiia). They are clearly Kurds first and Shiias/Sunnis second. It remains to be seen whether the Arab Shiias are Arabs first (and find common cause with the Sunni arabs). BTW Debka called this day after the election.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 6:07 Comments || Top||

#4  May also be substantial immigration from Turkey, Syria and Iran (which I strongly suspect).

Those would be Iraqi Kurds returning after the 1st phase of the war.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 6:55 Comments || Top||

#5  All indications are Iraqi Kurdistan is booming economically. If I was a young Kurd in Iran, Iraq, or Turkey I know where I would be heading. Its not hard to see why the Iraqi Kurds scare the sh#t out of the Turks.
Posted by: phil_b || 02/05/2005 7:14 Comments || Top||

#6  It indicates the Kurdish population is higher than commonly supposed.

It may also indicate that they may have had higher turnout due to 1) a higher level of security making it less risky to vote, 2) having already introduced democracy they may better "get out the vote" programs, and 3) given their experience with voting, they may have advanced vote generating systems like those used in Seattle and Milwaukee.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 02/05/2005 7:19 Comments || Top||

#7  There is a rumor that Allawi group plans to make a coalition with Kurdish group, which would form a majority government. Would be interesting to watch as this develops.
Posted by: Sobiesky || 02/05/2005 8:04 Comments || Top||

#8  Mrs. D, they may also have hidden their numbers under Saddam and had difficulty getting people down from the mountains to register and then again to vote. IOW, the registration figures might have been misleadingly low.

A Kurdish / Allawi coalition would be interesting. It might put pressure on the Shia to remain moderate (if it didn't polarize them into a theocratic stance). The really subtle pressure would be on the Sunni Arabs -- they would HAVE to make an alliance with one or the other group.

My sympathy reservoirs seem to be all dried up and the warehouse is backordered.
Posted by: too true || 02/05/2005 8:12 Comments || Top||


Africa: North
IAEA finds no Egyptian nuke plan
Not that the IAEA not finding anything makes me sleep any better at night.
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [447 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Whoa Nellie! An Egyptian-born head of the IAEA is unable to find any evidence of an Egyptian drive towards nuclear weapons. Shuckey darn, I suppose all of my concerns can now be laid to rest ... NOT!
Posted by: Zenster || 02/05/2005 0:43 Comments || Top||

#2  Do I really need to link this back to just how effective the IAEA has been in Iran?

[crickets]

I didn't think so.
Posted by: Zenster || 02/05/2005 0:44 Comments || Top||

#3  Zen - Lol - here I was, all innocent and trusting, and you've turned the world on its head, lol! Mebbe I should take Mikey's Prozac... I was considering giving it back to him, but I dunno now...

In the real world it seems people with an obvious conflict of interest customarily recuse themselves and allow others to perform such investigations. But it's Mikey's beloved UN, so it must be okay. I've never seen such a lip-lock on the naughty bits before. Poor freak's gonna get lockjaw, if not AIDS.
Posted by: .com || 02/05/2005 0:51 Comments || Top||

#4  In the real world it seems people with an obvious conflict of interest customarily recuse themselves and allow others to perform such investigations.

.com, please try and remember that in this modern world there's a lot of people who aren't on speaking terms with the truth.

Anyone who unquestioningly accepts Islamist regimes getting access to nuclear technology has partaken of a Kool Aid so powerful as to make Jim Jones' concoction look like soda pop.
Posted by: Zenster || 02/05/2005 23:51 Comments || Top||


Africa: Horn
Annan warns gov't to stop Darfur killing or face punishment
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan demanded speedy prosecution of Sudanese officials and militiamen guilty of crimes against humanity in Darfur, as members of the Security Council came under renewed pressure to tackle the issue at last.
"But it's not genocide! No, no! It's... ummm... something else!"
The push to end what has been labelled the world's worst humanitarian crisis gained impetus after a UN panel released a report Monday that said government-backed militias were still conducting rape, mass killing and wanton destruction in Darfur. The Security Council, and by extension the United Nations, have been dogged by allegations that they are standing by and doing little as thousands of people die in Darfur. Annan said Wednesday that on a recent trip to Abuja, Nigeria, he warned Sudanese leaders to rein in the so-called Janjaweed militia or face punishment — possibly including sanctions.
Oh, no! Not sanctions! Think of the children!
He said that leading suspects in the killings, whose names were provided to him in a secret annex to the report, must be tried urgently. "I think the commission was right in saying that it is important that urgent action be taken, and the perpetrators be brought to justice," Annan said. "They have to be prosecuted."
That implies somebody is going to round them up and bring them to court. And that the Sudanese gummint is going to stand by with its Islamic thumb up its butt while that's happening. Is Jimmy the Greek still around? I need somebody to figger the odds on that happening...

Continued on Page 49
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [282 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Give it 6 months or a year,Fred.That would be about right for the Usless Ninnies.
Posted by: Raptor || 02/05/2005 6:32 Comments || Top||

#2  What are they going to do, sanction Sudan on wheat imports? That would be inhuman! Just think of all the militia who won't be able to steal the food from those who need it! How will they make a living!?
Posted by: Charles || 02/05/2005 8:12 Comments || Top||

#3  I suggest a cooling off period and the formation of a committee of stakeholders to do an indepth study of this region and its problems. Denmark is nice in the spring. Is there a UN approved caterer there?
Posted by: Shipman || 02/05/2005 9:00 Comments || Top||

#4  UN-approved caterer??

Hell, my daddy is Kofi himself.

We'll let out bid for the conference, but mine will be thousands less than anyone in the world could possibly do it. In fact it so so low the only food I could bring to Denmark, Muslims won't eat, hell, my dog wouldn't even eat it and he's a dog!

How I will get my money is from charging registration fees plus a banquet fee, my cut, plus a little ( and a nice hooker for Dada ) for others, I can take that ITT course on Petroleum Engineering, so I can get into other oil deals.
Posted by: AnnansDiscountCatering || 02/05/2005 9:21 Comments || Top||


Afghanistan/South Asia
Pakistan Backs Negotiated Settlement of Kashmir Issue
Posted by: Fred || 02/05/2005 00:00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [272 views] Top|| File under:



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Sat 2005-02-05
  Kuwait hunts key suspects after surge of violence
Fri 2005-02-04
  Iraqi citizens ice 5 terrs
Thu 2005-02-03
  Maskhadov orders ceasefire
Wed 2005-02-02
  4 al-Qaeda members killed in Kuwait
Tue 2005-02-01
  Zarqawi sez he'll keep fighting
Mon 2005-01-31
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Sat 2005-01-29
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Thu 2005-01-27
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