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JMB chief Abdur Rahman nabbed
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 4: Opinion
2 00:00 Vinkat Bala Subrumanian [381] 
2 00:00 N guard [258] 
1 00:00 Anonymoose [278] 
8 00:00 Jan [273] 
5 00:00 Frank G [373] 
10 00:00 Pappy [349] 
3 00:00 borgboy [271] 
8 00:00 JosephMendiola [259] 
8 00:00 anonymous5089 [275] 
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Page 3: Non-WoT
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-Short Attention Span Theater-
That pic of Bush with troops in Afghan we wanted to see
Lots of smiles and touches here!
Posted by: Sherry || 03/02/2006 14:09 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [381 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Opsss -- I didn't do the size thing!
Posted by: Sherry || 03/02/2006 14:19 Comments || Top||


The women in the Military are MUCH better looking than when I was serving!

Posted by: Vinkat Bala Subrumanian || 03/02/2006 16:43 Comments || Top||

Home Front: WoT
It's time for an American foreign legion
America's principal ground fighting force is stretched to breaking point. Both the active and reserve components of the U.S. Army have nearly reached their recruiting limits in strength, given attitudes in America. Fighting international terrorism simply does not have the same appeal for the post-Baby Boom generation as fighting fascism did for the generation of World War II.

Understanding that the draft was no longer viable in the post-Vietnam era, the army leadership developed the All Volunteer Army in the 1970s in order to meet the defense challenges of the late 20th century, which were mostly short- term conflicts.

This approach served well in Grenada, Panama and the first Gulf War. That same leadership also foresaw future situations involving protracted conflict, and determined that the army would only go into prolonged combat with the National Guard and army reserves fighting alongside the active component.

The army felt that this would not only assure that manpower would be available for land warfare contingencies, but also that civilian soldiers would share the sacrifices required, thus giving some pause to the White House prior to making the decision to commit forces to combat.

This arrangement has managed to delay the onset of manpower shortages in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it has not resolved the issue, and potential for conflict in Iran or Syria or elsewhere only exacerbates the problem. The United States does not have enough ground troops now, and the pace being set poses a grave risk to the army in terms of both morale and readiness.

Some propose that the United States resolve this problem by simply getting out of both Iraq and Afghanistan unconditionally. But most Americans with any logical strategic perspective of U.S. defense interests know that such a decision would be seen as a victory for international terrorism, bolstering our enemy's image and morale in a major way, enabling them to recruit more volunteers, and encouraging them to strike us again elsewhere. So we must remain committed until Iraq and Afghanistan can shoulder their own internal defense burdens. There can be no repeat of a Vietnam-type face-saving withdrawal in this conflict. The stakes are simply too high.

The good news is that there is a large untapped resource of potential manpower that has not ever been considered by the army: huge numbers of young foreign military age males who have green cards and are eagerly seeking U.S. citizenship, or are awaiting visas in their homelands.

In exchange for U.S. citizenship at end of enlistment, these young men could be vetted and recruited by the army on five-year terms at recruiting stations in the United States and around the world. Placed in their own infantry units, and led by seasoned U.S. citizen officers and noncommissioned officers, they could be trained in the latest techniques of light infantry tactics and counterinsurgent warfare, and appropriately equipped for that mission - forming, in essence, an American Foreign Legion.

Once ready, these Legion units could be folded into the deployment cycle of the all-U.S. units to Southwest Asia, thus easing the strain there. Eventually, this would permit a number of U.S. regular forces to be withdrawn from the deployment cycle and earmarked for other missions.

Equal pay and modified benefit issues would have to be worked out, and the overall expense might require some army hi-tech developments to be placed on hold, but that would be a small price to pay for relief of the current problem.

Most Americans would view such a project positively. It is certainly a more attractive and productive measure than the announced waiver policy on criminal records for army recruits.

All superpowers, from ancient times to the modern era, have seen their civilian populations grow more and more disinclined to serve in their national defense forces. Inevitably they have all turned to mercenaries to defend their interests, thereby extending their national integrity, their ways of life and their unchallenged supremacy. It is America's turn, and we need to get on with putting such a program in place - now.

Wayne E. Long, a retired colonel in the U.S. Army, lives in Nairobi.
Posted by: .com || 03/02/2006 04:05 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [259 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Australia is considering a similar initiative, specifically aimed at Pacific islanders; Fijians, etc.
Posted by: phil_b || 03/02/2006 5:11 Comments || Top||

#2  A mercenary captain is either able, or he is not...
Posted by: gromgoru || 03/02/2006 10:09 Comments || Top||

#3  The problem with the idea is that this could become a good way for bad people to (a) get nice US training and experience (b) citizenship.

The Neonazi's sent members into the US military hoping to get military training. I'm not opposed to the idea but it would have to be carefully done.

I would suggest using such a unit primarily for peacekeeping and rebuilding duties. Probably working for the UN. That way the US military doesn't have the edge of its blade dulled by this nonsense. The US military cleans house and hands over the baton to these guys who are trained for peacekeeping and rebuilding.

We should also charge the UN for sending them anywhere as other nations do. Eventually these units, under UN control would naturally expand to take over most UN peacekeeping duties.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 03/02/2006 11:24 Comments || Top||

#4  This is precisely why God created contractors.
Posted by: Visitor || 03/02/2006 15:38 Comments || Top||

#5  Both the active and reserve components of the U.S. Army have nearly reached their recruiting limits in strength, given attitudes in America.

False on all accounts.

1 - Congress sets the limits of the forces. When the Army was downsized in the early 90s it went from 750,000 to 482,000 by LAW. In FY 2005 Congress finally got around to authorizing a modest increase of 20,000 to 502,000. In one year the Army raised 10,000 additional without a major shift of existing personal resources into the training base to accommodate greater numbers in a short period of time. It takes far more time to build up with skills and qualification, than it does to downsize the force. Body bags can be filled in 90 days.

2 - The Army operated for over a decade at the 750,000 mark prior to Desert Storm. In a smaller population base of the 80s, the Army was able to man the force. That's at a level of 50% great than today and without the draft.
Posted by: Sleremp Spineger5137 || 03/02/2006 17:26 Comments || Top||

#6  Many problems would be avoided in such a thing if the recruiting was limited to certain countries, not opened to all comers.

I'm thinking the Philippines. 95% Christian and highly pro-American, English-speaking to a substantial degree, a long-time US ally, and with a tradition of direct recruiting into the US armed forces (the US Navy did this until the 1970's). With a large community (2-3 million) in the US already, with a proven track record of rapid assimilation. The US could recruit a million Filipinos easily, and the subsequent citizenship/assimilation problems should be minimal.
Posted by: buwaya || 03/02/2006 18:40 Comments || Top||

#7  "...God created contractors"

Posted by: .com || 03/02/2006 19:39 Comments || Top||

#8  Thought the USMC was America's Foreign Legion - to paraphrase a Marine General from the 1980's?, its the Army's job "to win Wars", the Marines "to win Battles". I have never been attuned to when anytime America develops new warfighting technologies, it has to create a separate Uniformed Service. I remember analysts proposing as many as 9-10 separate Services.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 03/02/2006 21:32 Comments || Top||

Steyn certainly calls 'em as he sees 'em
I wish I was one tenth as eloquent.
Posted by: JerseyMike || 03/02/2006 08:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [349 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I haven't posted anything in a while and as you can see, I like the picture feature. Nice work Fred. You can delete the helicoper if the mood strikes you.
Posted by: JerseyMike || 03/02/2006 8:19 Comments || Top||

#2  Damn, that boy can write. I'm ready to grab my pitchfork, head to NYC and burn the phoockers out.
Posted by: BrerRabbit || 03/02/2006 10:33 Comments || Top||

#3  I think we'll eventually pull out, but not for a decade or so.

Dubya is disinclined to do it, and we'll have to go thru a Dem revival in the interim; but after that, I think we will "regretfully" exit.
Posted by: Spomong Chomoling1248 || 03/02/2006 12:05 Comments || Top||

#4  And it's not just the UN, but the whole multi-culti thingy.

I'd like to give it to Babs and DiFi, JFK and Teddy, then give 'em a test on the content. No, come to think of it, I hafta rearrange my sock drawer.
Posted by: Bobby || 03/02/2006 13:21 Comments || Top||

#5  Who's on the UN train? Definitely not Skimbleshanks.
Posted by: Korora || 03/02/2006 20:02 Comments || Top||

#6  Time for the bright ones to fold and leave the table.
Posted by: Hupomoger Clans9827 || 03/02/2006 21:03 Comments || Top||

#7  Agreed, HC. Methinks Steyn attended Ed's School of Reality (our ed) - he echoes many points that I've seen posted here - particularly ed.

The article is as much a vivisection as opinion. Splayed open, the UN is rot and corruption in (almost?) every aspect, in every action, in every organ.

A dead rat on America's kitchen floor.
Posted by: .com || 03/02/2006 21:20 Comments || Top||

#8  Tell me, why are there so many train wreck graphics on the Burhg?
Posted by: Visitor || 03/02/2006 21:24 Comments || Top||

#9  With some of it's guts spattered into Canada. We've had our horror story of ineffectual UN crap that led to well, the usual horrors.

I have such a loathing for the UN now, but as a starry-eyed child of the 60's, it seemed like a great idea.

Over time, we of the 60's have fallen complacently into the comforts of our small individual lives -- lost in the picayune market economy and less challenging philosophies. Otherwise, the current UN wouldn't exist.

Even more so today, we are the "children of the universe" and with all the hope and responsibility encompassed in the task of shifting paradigms, we must complete the journey.

The philosophies and ideals of that era (and the necessities of this) are NOT nostalgia. They are our legacy.
Posted by: Hupomoger Clans9827 || 03/02/2006 21:38 Comments || Top||

#10  Tell me, why are there so many train wreck graphics on the Burhg?

Because there are so many 'train wrecks'?
Posted by: Pappy || 03/02/2006 23:48 Comments || Top||

The “Dream Deferred” Essay Contest on Civil Rights in the Middle East
Posted by: BrerRabbit || 03/02/2006 11:50 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [278 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I once saw an oil painting done by some Czech or Polish artist. It depicted Richard Nixon in a pseudo-Moses role, leading the people of eastern Europe out of slavery.

For several generations, eastern Europeans will remember who stood by them always in their dark times. We can hope that the people of the Middle East will eventually do the same.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 03/02/2006 13:03 Comments || Top||

Iran’s Murderous Course
By Robert Spencer

“If setting fire to embassies of countries that insult the Prophet aims to show that these countries no longer have any place in Islamic countries then this act is permissible.” So says Ayatollah Dorri Najaf-Abadi, the Chief State Prosecutor of Iran, in ruling in favor of burning down the embassies of countries in which newspapers print the notorious Muhammad cartoons. It is not surprising that the regime that triggered the Iranian Hostage Crisis of 1979 would deny the sanctity of embassies, but the Ayatollah’s words here fit into a larger pattern in Iran. According to the dissident Iranian publication Rooz, as reported by the Middle East Media Research Institute, Shi’ite clerics in the religious center of Qom have endorsed the use of nuclear weapons as well: “Mohsen Gharavian, a disciple of [Ayatollah] Mesbah Yazdi [who is Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s spiritual mentor], has spoken for the first time of using nuclear weapons as a counter-measure. He stated that ‘in terms of the shari’a, it all depends on the goal.’”
“In terms of the shari’a, it all depends on the goal” -- and that goal for the Iranian regime and the global jihad movement is to be ruthless to the unbelievers and to fight against non-Muslims “until they pay the Jizya [the non-Muslim poll tax] with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued” (Qur’an 9:29) under the hegemony of Islamic law. Anything that may advance that goal -- nuclear weapons, burning embassies -- is permitted. If Paradise is guaranteed to those who “slay and are slain” for Allah (Qur’an 9:111), there is no downside to a nuclear attack on Israel or even on American troops in Iraq, even if it draws a crushing retaliation.
Rest at link.
Posted by: ed || 03/02/2006 13:58 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [258 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Anything that may advance that goal -- nuclear weapons, burning embassies -- is permitted. If Paradise is guaranteed to those who “slay and are slain” for Allah (Qur’an 9:111), there is no downside to a nuclear attack on Israel or even on American troops in Iraq, even if it draws a crushing retaliation.

In plain speech, Iran regards nuclear weapons as the world's biggest bomb vest. Someone please tell me again why Iran's signature on the NPT means sh!t to a tree.
Posted by: Zenster || 03/02/2006 16:20 Comments || Top||

#2  Uh oh. Somebody somewhere (here?) predicted that the Mullahs would gin up a fatwa to justify mass murder of the innocent as a precursor to actualy doing the deed.

arrant speculation alert:
I've wondered if part of the foot dragging on taking down the mullahs will result in us taking down a nuclear armed state without our using nuclear weapons in return...
The subsequent panic from all the other nuclear armed states as they realize that the "silver Bullet" dosent work on the US Boogeyman after all would be a sight to behold. I wonder if that panic would be noisy or silent? I wonder how many repeats of Lybia's performance would then ensue? Cold comfort for the radioactive, but satisfying nevertheless.
Posted by: N guard || 03/02/2006 17:52 Comments || Top||

Neither Military Action Nor Diplomacy Will Resolve Iran Crisis
By Reza Pahlavi

Ladies and gentlemen,

It saddens me to reappear before you here today at a time when under the yoke of the clerical regime, my homeland is labeled as the greatest threat to international peace and security, and more importantly, from my vantage point, this threat comes at the cost of great pain and suffering for my fellow compatriots in Iran.

Fear of the first state-sponsor of terrorism acquiring nuclear weapons, with all of its implications for nuclear blackmail and terror, even unconventional delivery of a nuclear device to Europe or to these shores, has been widely discussed. But let me address how the strategic landscape is viewed by those in power in Iran:

Like all totalitarian systems, the Islamist regime in Tehran needs to expand in order to survive. Mr. Ahmadinejad has worked to become more popular on the Arab street than he is in Iranian homes. His instruments of oppression – special units of the Revolutionary Guards and the Basijis – feel intensely disliked and find their morale eroded while on patrol in major Iranian cities, but they walk ten feet tall in the souks from Mindanawa to Damascus; this is because they present themselves as champions of radical Islamism in front of the West.

As long as the Islamic Republic is in power, the project for democracy in the greater Middle East may actually pave the way for Iran’s expansionism. Witness the Islamic Republic’s ally Hamas’ victory in Palestinian elections. The coalition forces have removed Saddam and placed power in Iraq’s elected parliament. But who is the king maker in that parliament today? It is the leader of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iran who for twenty years was nurtured and prepared for his present role by the leaders of the Islamic Republic. Nor is Iran limiting its bet to one option. Three weeks ago, the leader of the most radical Shiite faction in Iraq, went to Tehran to receive financial, intelligence and organizational support.

When Iran’s protégés have the money, information, and support from those who are masters of manipulation, intimidation and violence against their political opponents, they have a strong upper-hand against their rivals in a nascent democracy such as Iraq. In Lebanon, if Hezbollah can spend more money than the government building schools, mosques and hospitals – thanks to generous Iranian contributions – don’t be surprised if they win elections.

A “Bermuda Triangle” from Iraq to Lebanon to Palestine is being taken over by Iran’s allies through the ballot box. It could pull in the Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt, and when it does the same to the Shiites of the oil-rich Eastern province of Saudi Arabia, the encirclement of the Persian Gulf will be complete. Islamists will have achieved what the Soviets could not, namely complete control of the Persian Gulf oil and the jugular of Western economies. They would then have a latter day Caliphate to lead all the forces that are against the post Cold War vision of the free world.

All the Islamic Republic needs in order to achieve this goal is to be able to use low intensity violence to supplement its financial, intelligence and organizational support for its allies. That, ladies and gentlemen, is why Iran needs the bomb: to neutralize the conventional military superiority of the West, and continue to use terrorism and low intensity violence without the fear of escalation to high intensity conventional warfare. For the free world, these are unacceptable outcomes. And yet, there isn’t much time to find a solution. The resumption of enrichment by the Islamic Republic has drastically reduced the window of decision. The vast number of commentaries and reports on the subject seem to come down to this: comparing diplomatic options with punitive ones, including military strikes.

I am here to tell you that neither is an option:

The fruitless Euro-three diplomatic efforts have already given the theocrats three years. Another three years of cat-and-mouse games with the Russians under the IAEA buys enough time to make a bomb: that is the Islamic Republic’s plan and hope.

The problem with these negotiations all along was the false assumption that the other side wants a solution to avert a crisis. Quite the contrary: Increasingly unpopular, the Islamic Republic needs an atmosphere of crisis to justify its increased militarization and harsh security measures at home, and divert attention from increasing poverty and the misery index – so long as this crisis does not result in a shooting war which they will lose. The fundamentalists’ assumption is that continuing on their present course will lead to a collision with the free world. Therefore, they believe they need a nuclear umbrella to force the other side off the road before the collision.

As for a military strike, it will rally nationalistic sentiments which will work to the regime’s advantage, and consequently, give the theocracy a much longer lease on life. Make no mistake about it; the question is what comes first in Iran: Democracy or nuclear weapons? The race is on!

Let me repeat: a military strike may delay the bomb by two or three years, but it will delay democracy several times over. It is not a smart choice, and no way to win the race! If neither negotiations nor punitive measures are the answer, the inevitable question becomes: how is democracy achievable in Iran?

Let us recall that a hundred years ago, Iran’s Constitutional Revolution introduced the first genuine democracy into the East, with more than half the population of the world. Let me assure you that today, there are more than a thousand circles of dissent and opposition in Iran against the regime. Their cumulative weight is far greater than that of the clerical regime. However, the problem is that they are kept isolated from each other; and this is the regime’s highest priority.

Local networks facilitating communications within these circles are beyond the regime’s control. When it comes to connecting all of these circles at the national level, however, the regime comes down with an iron fist. The Reform Movement, the Student Movement, the printed press, web loggers, provide examples of attempts to create national networks.

The regime’s response to the Reform Movement was to corrupt it from above by installing subservient leaders who later confessed their vow to defend the regime, not the people who elected them.

They fragmented the student movement through a combination of torture, imprisonment, building a fifth column, and even a vast drug ring. Can you imagine, a year prior to the vast student protests of 1999, you could seldom find drugs in dorms; a year later heroin was cheaper than tobacco! This does not happen in authoritarian states, unless underwritten by the state itself.

Living in the free world, you would expect that the natural means of communication with these circles would be a free press. Well, there are more journalists and web loggers in Iranian jails today than in any other country in the world.

While the roots of a national communications network has to be inside Iran, the conclusion from the observations above is that the hub of this network cannot be inside the country.

This is where the free world can help. I know of hundreds of young dissidents who have done organizational activity inside Iran, in effect connecting the aforementioned small local networks. Today they are sitting scared in places from Jordan to Turkey, or in refugee camps in European cities. With a little help from the free world, they can become the building blocks of a two-way communication network that aggregates the demands of the thousand circles of opposition into a national demand for democracy and against this theocracy.

I stand here before you, appealing on behalf of the many dissidents who simply ask for the support of the free world. And I hope that I am right to being optimistic that the free world is indeed committed to invest in democracy as the solution for Iran, rather than endless negotiations or military strikes.

Mr. Pahlavi, son of the former Shah, gave this speech at the National Press Club March 1, 2006.
Posted by: Steve White || 03/02/2006 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [386 views] Top|| File under:

#1  He predictably ignores the ethnic divisions, which will bring down the Iranian regime.
Posted by: phil_b || 03/02/2006 0:16 Comments || Top||

#2  I stand here before you, appealing on behalf of the many dissidents who simply ask for the support of the free world. And I hope that I am right to being optimistic that the free world is indeed committed to invest in democracy as the solution for Iran, rather than endless negotiations or military strikes.

ah yes, free the dissidents and magically Iran will become a democracy. It's all the west's fault that it is not, don't ya see. So don't bomb us, don't talk to us, don't santion us - just make your call to free the dissidents and all will be well. Please send, with your pleas, your credit card number and some cash to Reza Pahlavi. A woman did this last week and shortly after she did, she bought a lottery ticket and won the jackpot. Thank you.
Posted by: 2b || 03/02/2006 0:23 Comments || Top||

#3  good thing that you support Bush so well Rif Raf.

I'm glad you see it that way.
Posted by: Rafael || 03/02/2006 0:42 Comments || Top||

#4  diplomacy maybe not, but military action will resolve it, how long are we going to wait before they build the nukes, what kind of precedent are we setting here for other countries
Posted by: Ulemp Elmigum3652 || 03/02/2006 0:55 Comments || Top||

#5  ah yes, free the dissidents and magically Iran will become a democracy.

ah yes, another one who learns nothing from history.

This is where the free world can help. I know of hundreds of young dissidents who have done organizational activity inside Iran, in effect connecting the aforementioned small local networks. Today they are sitting scared in places from Jordan to Turkey, or in refugee camps in European cities. With a little help from the free world, they can become the building blocks of a two-way communication network that aggregates the demands of the thousand circles of opposition into a national demand for democracy and against this theocracy.

This was essentially one of the ways that communist propaganda was countered on the eastern side of the iron curtain. Information by itself, however, is not enough. There has to be a spark from within.
Posted by: Rafael || 03/02/2006 1:12 Comments || Top||

#6  Lol, this strikes me as three things...

1) a cash cow - with all the proceeds being filtered through Pahlavi and, likely disappearing right there

2) an amateurish parlor game that would result in exposing and a consequent roll up of the real dissidents inside Iran for death and / or 20 years of prison beatings

3) yet another way to give the MM's another 2-3 years to complete their acquisition of a deliverable nuke... only with a payoff - see #1

Yes, there will be nationalistic feelings generated if the Persians aren't part of the regime change / nuke takeout... It doesn't matter what they think if they fail to get their shit together in time. The non-Persians are likely to be rather happy about it. Circulating petitions and listening to a self-serving character like Pahlavi will have precisely zero bearing. It will happen and neither they nor Raphael nor Russian and ChiCom whores will be able to stop it.

Sucks to be behind the curve.
Posted by: .com || 03/02/2006 3:05 Comments || Top||

#7  It sucks even more to be behind the curve and dead.

Iran is running on borrowed time. We should start by rolling up their terrorist satelite groups anyway we can before cutting the head off the snake. Whats left of a Persian Iran can rot afterwards for all I care as long as it's another 100 years before they get their stuff together enough for anyone to have too pay attention to them again.
Posted by: SPoD || 03/02/2006 3:47 Comments || Top||

#8  Violence never solves anything.
The City Fathers of Carthage (RAH)
Posted by: gromgoru || 03/02/2006 10:10 Comments || Top||

#9  We should bankrupt them, destroy their means of making $$
Posted by: Ulamble Ebbomons7669 || 03/02/2006 11:19 Comments || Top||

#10  It will happen and neither they nor Raphael nor Russian and ChiCom whores will be able to stop it.

I wouldn't dream of it.
Posted by: Rafael || 03/02/2006 12:55 Comments || Top||

#11  If neither military action or negotiation will solve the problem but military action will delay acquisition of nuclear weapons, the choice is simple. Who gives a rip about how long democracy is delayed? Once Iran has nuclear weapons, they will gain an immunity that forever compromises any ability to act in the Middle East. Bomb the crap out of them immediately.
Posted by: Zenster || 03/02/2006 18:33 Comments || Top||

#12  Wholehearted agreement, Zenster - except for the "immediately" bit. We Want What We Want When We Want It (W8I). Bush lives in the real world, where that never happens on cue. I agree that sucks.
Posted by: .com || 03/02/2006 18:38 Comments || Top||

#13  More whine bitch moan. Iran, stand up for yourselves and get on with the damn overthrow.

A few well-placed bullets and you're on your way. Given the high horse of the "intellectuals" about how progressive iran and how different they are from all this Mahmoud crap, where's the action.

Sitting afraid and doing nothing will get you wiped out with Mahmoud. Help yourselves, like ya keep saying you want to. Gotta take risks youselves - the knight on the white charger is a little busy right now.
Posted by: Hupomoger Clans9827 || 03/02/2006 20:26 Comments || Top||

#14  Fact is: You don't know what you got till you kick the door down. Planning is good, contingencies are a given.

Fact #2: Can't wait for the disgruntled masses to pop their collective heads up. We are in a race against time, the clock is ticking.

Fact #3: Iran is the epicenter.

Fact #4: Regime change is mandatory. I can't envision Bush kicking the can down the street two or three years by strategic bombing target locations.

Fact #5: The EU faces a put-up-or-fuck-off decision within the next six months, as the coaltion of the willing is being formulated.

Fact #6: Take down launched in November or December 2006.

Posted by: Captain America || 03/02/2006 21:40 Comments || Top||

#15  Reza Pahlevi, Shah-in-exile, is begging us not to destroy his patrimony before he takes ownership of it.
Posted by: trailing wife || 03/02/2006 23:30 Comments || Top||

Terror Networks
The Key Strategic Question
Is Islam compatible with a free society?

This is the key strategic question of our day.
A 'yes' answer offers a far different set of strategic imperatives than a 'no' answer.

To say yes to our question, one assumes that there are aspects of being Muslim and faithful to Islam, that can coexist peacefully with liberty, tolerance, and equality. The strategy that follows is one of identifying the groups and sects within Islam that adhere to these notions of their religion, and then encouraging them, favoring them, propagating them, and splitting them off from the elements of Islamic practice that are all too incompatible with the portions of modernity that invigorate men's souls: free inquiry, free association, free commerce, free worship, or even the freedom to be left alone.

To answer no, one states that Islam itself is fundamentally irreconcilable with freedom. This leads to a wholly different set of tactical moves to isolate free societies from Islam. They might include:

-detention of Muslims, or an abrogation of certain of their rights;

-forced deportation of Muslims from free societies;

-rather than transformative invasions, punitive expeditions and punitive strikes;

-extreme racial profiling;

-limits on the practice and study of Islam in its entirety

And even some extreme measures if free societies find the above moves to be failing:

-forced conversion from Islam, or renunciation;


-extermination of Muslims wherever they are found.

These last are especially ghastly measures. But a society that thought Islam incompatible with freedom might in the long term slip towards them.

Not news to us, but a good rendering; read the whole thing.
Posted by: Glenmore || 03/02/2006 09:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [373 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The extreme measures are not imaginative enough. They are too straight laced, and black and white. They, also, show a lack of understanding of religion and how it goes away. The suggested actions might just make it stronger.

You destroy a religion by perverting it, seducing it members, making it irrelevant to life and embarassing to belong to. Silly works too.

So when ways are mentioned to accomplish this in a non-violent but invasive manner the religous supporters of this war blanch as they know many of the techniques are portable to their reality. Therefore, we must follow the blockhead courses..

Posted by: 3dc || 03/02/2006 10:40 Comments || Top||

#2  It demands a separation within Islam between the religion and the body politic to survive as a religion.

The question cannot be answered by infidels. To even pose the questions risks riots.

Posted by: Hupomoger Clans9827 || 03/02/2006 21:07 Comments || Top||

#3  Paging Isabella of Castille, paging Isabella of Castille ...
Posted by: DMFD || 03/02/2006 22:05 Comments || Top||

#4  I agree 3dc: You destroy a religion by perverting it, seducing it members, making it irrelevant to life and embarassing to belong to. Silly works too.

That's exactly what Ali Sina said here in a long polemicinterview. It was posted on the 'burg here.

Here's a choice quote:

Muhammad was an idiot, a psychopath, a crackpot. He needs to be laughed at not disproved. What is there to disprove about splitting the moon, climbing the seventh heaven riding on the back of a horse with human face and meeting dead prophets who tell him to bargain with God to reduce the number of prayers from 50 to 5 times per day? Is God stupider than his prophets? The entire Quran is a big joke. If it was not so violent, it would be the biggest comic book ever written.

Posted by: xbalanke || 03/02/2006 22:07 Comments || Top||

#5  not to mention the thobes, turbans, and curly-toed shoes
Posted by: Frank G || 03/02/2006 22:52 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Culture Wars
About 'Hispanics'
Low-skilled illegal immigrants are slowing the ascension of Latinos, as a group, into the U.S. middle class, the nation's most prestigious research group warned Wednesday...

(original opinion)

The article alludes to several characteristics about "Hispanic" immigration that are usually missing from most of the debate.

To start with, the very word "Hispanic" is a grotesque, politically correct term popularized by the US government first in the 1980 census. It really defines nothing, and is both irritating to the people thus labeled and confuses the issues surrounding legal and illegal immigration from a huge region of the planet.

Perhaps one of the most interesting definition of "Hispanics" is "people who do not interbreed with each other if they are from different countries, religions, ethnic groups, social or economic classes, education, or speak different languages." They are oddly unique in this way, that is, in not wanting to have anything to do with each other.

At least until they cross the US border, and at least as far as the US government is concerned. And no, they don't intermarry with each other up here, either, though they will intermarry under some circumstances with anybody else.

A minority of the "Hispanics" who are Mexican, which is to say mostly Indian, are a majority in the US only because their country of origin happens to be right next door. Not surprisingly, the next largest groups tend to be the Guatemalans, from "the next country down", and the Puerto Ricans, who technically at least are from the United States already. The next largest group would probably be the Cubans, from the theoretical 51st State, sooner or later, again to be part of the United States also. Maybe sometime, weather permitting. Though not the rest of the Caribbean. Especially Aruba.

I hope this clears things up a tad. No? Well, among the other countries labeled as "Hispanic", we have the mostly African negroes from Belize and the entirely white looking people, a lot of them at least, from South America, that speak both mostly Spanish, of some dialect or other, or Portuguese. Or some Indian language or frequently English.

Though it seems counterintuitive, it should be pointed out that neither the Spanish, from "Hispania", nor the Portuguese, also from "sort-of-Hispania", are not "Hispanic", and I probably shouldn't dream on speculating about the Catalans or the Basques, who get really snippy if you refer to them as "Spanish".

So, anyway, back to the Mexicans, who are most of our legal and illegal aliens these days. Pretty much like the other immigrants who came to the US uninvited, they integrate in about three generations. However, because we have learned that it's probably better that they integrate faster than do like Europe does with its immigrants, this integration is happening a lot faster than the norm. Which brings up the statement from the original quoted text:
Low-skilled illegal immigrants are slowing the ascension of Latinos, as a group, into the U.S. middle class, the nation's most prestigious research group warned Wednesday...

Since having a larger, younger, work-oriented middle class is a good thing, especially since we "non-Hispanics and others" are getting on in years and need somebody to pay for our retirements, and since "Latinos" (a subset of "Hispanics") do seem to integrate quickly and ascend to the middle class quickly, we should probably conclude two things:

1) Having a goodly degree of Mexican immigrants is a good thing, as long as it is not done to excess, and,

2) To help the Mexican immigrants who are already in our country ascend to the middle class as soon as possible is also a good thing.

Which basically means that we need to erect a wall mostly as a governor to limit the unrestricted flow of Mexicans into the United States; while, ironically, encouraging far more of them to legally immigrate to the US.

It also means that we should reconsider the label "Hispanic", and perhaps try to come up with some other labels when deciding what people we already have enough of for the time being, and what people we could add to the ol' melting pot without destabilizing the cosmic order.

For example, since he wouldn't dream of marrying a different "Hispanic", we might allow a female Peruvian Taoist who *also* speaks Japanese, has a masters degree in Botany, with an annual salary of $78,000; so at least that Peruvian "Hispanic" will have somebody to get married to. Otherwise he might have to marry someone who only has a bachelor's degree.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 03/02/2006 10:37 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [273 views] Top|| File under:

#1  argh where to start here.

Since having a larger, younger, work-oriented middle class is a good thing, especially since we "non-Hispanics and others" are getting on in years and need somebody to pay for our retirements DON"T SPEAK FOR ME!
If we as a people aren't able to look further into the future to see how this will have a negative impact on our children and their children, we are very much in trouble here. Our own children need to know what hard work is and appreciate what it means. To have our children grow up expecting to have all the "labor" related jobs done by illegals instead of doing the work themselves puts more of a wedge between us as people.
The educational level of our communities are lowering significantly and fast. I don't see us coming up with the next brilliant idea with most not even graduating from high school. When we're gone and these young uneducated Mexicans are at our age, and no longer able to work who will support them? With our exporting all of our high end jobs to India and other countries OMG.
Also they are costing our country so much more in medical expenses and the like compared to the few taking advantage of cheap labor. They are scabs, lowering the wage and lowering the benefits offered by many private companies. Not having insurance means they get emergency medicaid and that comes out of my pocket for the business owner to get a "break".
Also what melting pot? Illegals have been bringing with them their own culture, most don't seem to be interested in our culture at all here. They are interested in all of the free care, schools, and get it. There are many neighborhood businesses here in Colorado that don't speak english for you to communicate. The expense of interpreters is outrageous.
If imigrants want to come here because they like our credo, and want to be like us yes by all means, but to not accept any of what we're about and demand to have their culture and rights upheld is an outrage. Especially when they are here illegally. Don't misunderstand me with this comment, as I do feel we need to respect all cultures, but our own should be the dominating one followed here.
We need to not get hung up on the labels, we need to just see clearly and act on the fact that illegals are breaking the law and deal with it.
We don't need more monies spent on another agency coming up with another term for hispanic. They have already changed the term citizen to resident to allow the illegals to access our libraries and other services here in Colorado.
Posted by: Jan || 03/02/2006 13:49 Comments || Top||

#2  Personally I don't understand why Europe isn't doing there best to work out migrant worker programs with Latin America. The Latin Americans need the cash, Europe needs cheap labor. Latin Americans already speak a Europan language and are flush with Judeo-Christian beliefs which Europe could use some firming up on. The deal would also increase trade between the continents.

Yeah it would cost more to get them there but in the long run, compared to Islamic ghettos and riots, it would seem to be a far cheaper solution.

Come on home boys.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 03/02/2006 14:00 Comments || Top||

#3  #2: Personally I don't understand why Europe isn't doing there best to work out migrant worker programs with Latin America.

The Shipping costs are prohibitive. (Pun intended)
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 03/02/2006 14:04 Comments || Top||

#4  "Latinos also identify themselves differently"

The "open borders" crowd like to paint the false impression that all Latinos share their viewpoint. Contrary to that myth history shows that many legal Latino immigrants oppose their illegal counterparts.
Mexican hero and former president of the United Farm Workers Union César Chávez always maintained that illegal immigrants drove down wages. He even called INS to report the presence of illegal immigrants in the fields and demand that the agency deport them. UFW officials were even known to picket INS offices to demand a crackdown on illegal immigrants.

Shhhh...don't tell the Unions or the "Immigrant Rights" groups. They might call you a racist bigot.
Posted by: DepotGuy || 03/02/2006 15:33 Comments || Top||

#5  Jan: your arguments are true for illegal immigrants, but only initially for legal immigrants.

The Irish, Italians, even Germans entering the US were in the first generation, ghettoized in the way Europe does today. Second generation they became troublesome because they were neither integrated nor old world. Only in the third generation did they really become permanently Americans.

Because of the efforts of the US, Mexicans are going through these three generations all at once. You stop being Mexican in a hurry and are on the fast track to being an American--a good American.

And, on the plus side, if we *do* close the border, all of a sudden those who are already over here become major assets--they rapidly move into the middle class--the most productive, educated and profitable part of our demographics.

It's just not feasible to throw 2-10 million people, many of whom are already Americanized, back across the border to a country they have either left behind or never knew.

And ghettoization these days is tiny, compared to the vast numbers that fully integrate. Even in Phoenix metro, you could probably count on two hands the streets that have dominant Spanish-sign businesses; out of a metro area of 260 square miles, with thousands of streets.

Within the past week, it was suggested that the moribund radical "Hispanic" organization MeCha be reactivated. However, to show how times have changed, the middle-class Mexicans who proposed this immediately stated: "...but without the protests, the radicalism and leftist politics, we want someplace where we can network..."

In other words, they want a business club, a Mexican-American version of Rotary Club.

I just cannot get concerned about the possibility that Mexican Rotarians will somehow hurt our economy.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 03/02/2006 16:56 Comments || Top||

#6  Anonymoose, my mother in law when she came here from Germany (she escaped since she was jewish, unlike other family members that didn't make it out) needed a sponsor, and had to have money to start out with to get here. She worked from the age of 14 in the garment district in New York. Likewise my grandparents needed sponsors. I feel a big difference to compare with the flood of illegals coming over the border every day.
You do bring up some good points, that I don't see any easy answers to regarding the illegals that are here already etc.. But we really need to address this problem and not just let it continue to get worse every day.
I would like to see an english only law get established, and really teach english in the schools. This is maybe a bit off topic here, but would like to see all of our high school graduates commit 2 years of service to our country not all need to be in a military capacity, but I feel our youngsters need to do community service. My kids did in scouts throughout the years, and I think they are better because of it.
Posted by: Jan || 03/02/2006 19:09 Comments || Top||

#7  Jan: There is a huge demand for adult English as a second language and literacy classes, far more than can be handled through typical means. Something I've proposed in past was to use existing resources, in this case public libraries, as "open to close" English language and literacy centers.

That is, most public libraries have all the ingredients: meeting rooms, English language experts, written reading material, multilingual instructional material, graphic training aids and teaching resources. Library volunteers and librarians could have classes going on continually during business hours with all levels of instruction.

Not only do they learn English, but they have at their fingertips any number of practical books to actually *do* something with their skills, so they are improving other areas of their lives at the same time. Typically, after work, adults go to the library every night it is open and start reading something new, after they have learned enough English to start.

HOWEVER, that being said, as to your second point, about community service, I have to strongly disagree. Community service is HELL. It always begins with good intentions, but then the most despicable, swinish, nasty and useless people gravitate to the controls of the system, tormenting everybody who goes through it.

It could best be compared to a court mandated drug diversion program that you have to attend for six months because someone you carpooled with had a marijuana cigarette on him (guilt by association).

A drug diversion program ran by a control freak liberal who insists that you kiss his behind or he will keep you in the program forever. You must admit to drug use, even though you didn't, and you must show improvement, even if there are no drugs in your blood. If you don't do either, the diversion class can run for years. And best of all, you have to pay him for the privilege to abuse you.

Oh, it makes me shudder because I know the people locally who would run such a service program, and I would find it damn hard to get through such a program without gutting one or more of them with a grapefruit knife.

To recap, it always sounds good, but it never, never, never, ever, works.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 03/02/2006 20:13 Comments || Top||

#8  oh well, I did like my kids doing community service and giving back to society. But these programs are only as good as the people that run them.
Regarding learning the english language; in Denver, we had I think it was 7 libraries changed to spanish language to accomodate the neighborhoods they were located in. Instead of keeping them english and having folks learn english, they have no reason to learn english now that everything is offered in spanish.
It is an ugly problem, with no good or easy solutions.
Posted by: Jan || 03/02/2006 20:34 Comments || Top||

Pinkerton: Loaded for politics at the Oscars
So are you looking forward to the Academy Awards show Sunday night? Really? Can you name the five movies nominated for best picture? Have you seen any of them?

Most Americans haven't. The top-earning film among the best-picture nominees is "Brokeback Mountain," which has taken in about $75 million. That means that perhaps 10 million Americans have seen it. By contrast, the most recent "Harry Potter" movie and "The Chronicles of Narnia," each taking in four times as much money, were mostly ignored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

But, if the academy is overlooking popular films, it is paying close attention to progressive - even transgressive - films. As everyone knows, "Brokeback" is gay-friendly, but so is another film receiving nominations, "Transamerica." And let's not forget the preachily PC "North Country" and the overtly left-leaning "Syriana" and "Good Night, and Good Luck." And, oh yes, in Hollywood, there's usually special sympathy for a nonwhite-collar criminal, hence the Oscar-nominated song, "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp."

But a furor is starting to erupt around another movie, "Paradise Now," nominated as best foreign-language film. The film is obscure (director Hany Abu-Assad is not a name heard much around Hollywood), and it hasn't made much money (barely more than $1 million), but the topic is red hot: suicide bombing in Israel.

The tagline of the movie declares, "From the most unexpected place comes a bold new call for peace," and the film is nuanced and ambiguous. Still, it's hard to refute the argument that it humanizes Palestinian suicide bombers. A private group called The Israel Project has led the charge against "Paradise Now"; yesterday the project held a news conference in Jerusalem in which the Israeli father of a teenager killed by a suicide bomber referred to the film as "Hell Now." And the project is running an ad in Variety that asks, "Is it right to honor a film that puts a human face on deliberate murders of children?"

That's a great question, although Hollywood, of course, humanizes murderers all the time. "Capote," one of the films in contention for the best picture Oscar, puts human - and to Truman Capote, at least, sexually alluring - faces on the men who killed four people in Kansas, including two teenagers, back in 1959.

Still, "Paradise Now" might turn out to be too edgy for the Hollywood crowd. The Academy Awarders might not want to vote for the movie some say will encourage more suicide bombers in Israel - and maybe, too, in Iraq.

Instead, there's another film up for best foreign film that might actually cleanse some of the blood on Hollywood's hands. It's "Joyeux N"el," and it's about temporarily ending a war that never should have been fought, World War I. The French film is a fictionalized version of a true occurrence: the "Christmas Truce" that blossomed briefly along parts of the Western Front in France in 1914.

For a few hours the Brits and the Germans, inspired by the holy day, stopped killing each other. Indeed, the movie shows most soldiers joining in a Latin Christmas Mass - a lyrical reminder that the ancient language of the church once gave the continent a semblance of unity. Another unifying force in the film is Western music; men from the warring countries knew the same Christmas carols as well as the beauty of Bach.

Sadly, tragically, the truce ended and the fighting resumed; some 8.5 million soldiers died. Afterward, a ruined Europe stumbled into fascism, communism and Nazism, leading to the deaths of many millions more just a generation later.

Honoring "Joyeux N"el" with the Oscar for best foreign film won't change that painful history. But on Sunday Hollywood has a chance to remind us that audiences can be warmed and heartened by what unites us - not thrilled and chilled and bloodied by what divides us.
Posted by: .com || 03/02/2006 04:17 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [271 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I think it appropriate if the film glamorizing suicide bombers wins since this year, Hollywood is willingly and knowingly putting on its own suicide belt.

Nobody pays attention to them anymore so in an effort to get our attention, they become more and more outrageous every year. They glorify suicide bombers for the same reason all suicide bombers do, go make a call for attention that we can't ignore. Like with a suicide bomber, they will briefly get the attention they seek and then, five days later, only the people whose lives they destroyed will remember. But at least they got our atttention - right? Isn't that whats important to them? LOOK AT ME!!
Posted by: 2b || 03/02/2006 8:41 Comments || Top||

#2  So are you looking forward to the Academy Awards show Sunday night? Really? Can you name the five movies nominated for best picture? Have you seen any of them?

No. Yes. No. No.
Posted by: DoDo || 03/02/2006 12:53 Comments || Top||

#3  "Wallace & Gromit: curse of the Were Rabbit" rules!
Posted by: borgboy || 03/02/2006 16:06 Comments || Top||

The Return of Patriarchy
Posted by: tipper || 03/02/2006 01:24 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [275 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Drivel.
Posted by: phil_b || 03/02/2006 1:55 Comments || Top||

#2  I found the article actually rather persuasive. Its thrust is that selfish people see children as a burden, and therefore exterminate themselves by refusing to reproduce. They are replaced by real people who actually care about others.
Posted by: gromky || 03/02/2006 4:03 Comments || Top||

#3  I was referring to statements like this.

Patriarchy does not simply mean that men rule. Indeed, it is a particular value system that not only requires men to marry but to marry a woman of proper station. It competes with many other male visions of the good life, and for that reason alone is prone to come in cycles.
Posted by: phil_b || 03/02/2006 6:10 Comments || Top||

#4  This article fleshes out the Roe Effect and puts it in context.

A bit long-winded, but otherwise an excellent read.

Demographics truly is destiny. And all the platitudes in the world are trumped by DNA. We truly cannot legislate biology.

Some of the more extreme notions of modern feminism, even if well-intended, were doomed from the drawing board. All the wishing in the world won't change that.
Posted by: no mo uro || 03/02/2006 6:55 Comments || Top||

#5  Long but not long winded in my opinion. I thought the point about the unintended consequences of the welfare state was particularly insightful. How long till the entire New Deal is proven counterproductive and rolled back?
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 03/02/2006 8:24 Comments || Top||

#6  Somebody should tell grom-wife & grom-baby.
Posted by: gromgoru || 03/02/2006 10:48 Comments || Top||

#7  Interesting read; see also this, "Demographics and the Culture War By Stanley Kurtz", don't remember if I've posted here or not.

Two random thoughts :
- On a global level, the followers of a given "conservative" religion are outbreeding competition everywhere, regardless of ethnicity, even when their own natality numbers are falling. Guess which "conservative" religion? Oh, yaaas, a substantial part of the coming world's population will be "conservative", no doubt.


- Heard it on a conservative independent radio : France's demographical group with the highest natality is not black african wimmen (4,5, supposedly, as opposed to 1,2 for european french wimmen, theses are not official stats, since categorizing through ethnicit is forbidden), but would be traditionalist catholics (6,6 kiddies per woman)... theses are the most conservative part of french society, with lots of home schooling, latin mass, joining scouts, learnign musical instruments, reading books, studying in prestigious private schools (even if they mostly hails from middle-class), joining the army (80% of Saint Cyr military academy cadets supposedly follow traditional pre-Vatican II mass).

Why, I may be an evolutionary dead-end, and a bit of genetical deadwood, but this brings a lil' smile on my unlovely bloated face.
Posted by: anonymous5089 || 03/02/2006 15:41 Comments || Top||

#8  AHH forgot link :
Demographics and the Culture War by Stanley Kurtz - Policy Review, No_ 129
Posted by: anonymous5089 || 03/02/2006 15:42 Comments || Top||

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Two weeks of WOT
Thu 2006-03-02
  JMB chief Abdur Rahman nabbed
Wed 2006-03-01
  US journo trapped in Afghan prison riot
Tue 2006-02-28
  Yemen Executes American Missionaries’ Murderer
Mon 2006-02-27
  Saudi forces clash with suspected militants
Sun 2006-02-26
  Jihad Jack Guilty
Sat 2006-02-25
  11 killed, nine churches torched in Nigeria
Fri 2006-02-24
  Saudi forces thwart attack on oil facility
Thu 2006-02-23
  Yemen Charges Five Saudis With Plotting Attacks
Wed 2006-02-22
  Shi'ite shrine destroyed in Samarra
Tue 2006-02-21
  10 killed in religious clashes in Nigeria
Mon 2006-02-20
  Uttar Pradesh minister issues bounty for beheading cartoonists
Sun 2006-02-19
  Muslims Attack U.S. Embassy in Indonesia
Sat 2006-02-18
  Nigeria hard boyz threaten total war
Fri 2006-02-17
  Pak cleric rushdies cartoonist
Thu 2006-02-16
  Outbreaks along Tumen River between Nork guards and armed N Korean groups

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