Sunday, November 23, 2003

The Michael Jackson Creepshow. The infamous Michael Jackson documentary was on last night on Channel Two, I guess its been postponed in the US because of his arrest and frankly I’m not surprised. The picture I got from the documentary was of a seriously demented and dangerous individual. He appears to be the most violent case of arrested development I’ve ever seen. He looks, talks, acts, and apparently thinks like a twelve year old. Even worse, he seems totally oblivious to this fact. I normally despise the BBC interviewing style, but there was something seriously satisfying about watching the host bore in on Jackson’s denial, finally catching him in a series of obvious lies, evasions, and distortions. My friend remarked that there was clearly some very intense sexual abuse in his past, which would make sense, although I think the abuse may have been mainly physical/emotional. It’s also clear that Jackson has a major problem with children, which seems to be less a fetish than a desperate obsession. It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if he’s guilty of the charges against him and a great deal more besides. One wonders if there’s any possibility of salvaging this wreck of a human being, but considering the extent to which he’s mutilated his body in completely irreversible ways would seem to preclude such a possibility. All in all, the most striking thing about the film was how much it underlined Jackson’s complete isolation not only from normal society but from other human beings in general. He doesn’t seem to have any friends to speak of, any family he talks to, any of the normal human contacts we take for granted. He’s surrounded by people all the time, but they’re basically all employees, people dependent on him financially and therefore likely to tell him exactly what he wants to hear. A sad story, I suppose, and there doesn’t seem to be any way it can end except very badly indeed.

As a brief aside, I also can’t understand how anyone could allow this person to raise a child. He claims that his children have never been out in public except wearing masks, so they wont be recognized. I’m not sure I want to contemplate the psychological impact of something like that.

The Mind of Arik Sharon. They're also reporting that PM Sharon may be considering a unilateral seperation from the Palestinians, apparently involving the dismantling of outlying settlements, something along the lines of what Ehud Barak has been talking about for three years. This is an idea which, as anyone who’s been reading this blog knows, I think is a terrific idea, and, considering the impossibility of an agreement with the Palestinians at the moment, is frankly inevitable. I don’t know whether Sharon is just floating a trial balloon or if he actually is planning to go through with it. The main obstacle is the National Religious Party (Mafdal), which will likely bolt the coalition if Sharon starts dismantling settlements. Sharon might be counting on Labor forming a National Unity government if this happens, and might want to try and force the situation so it can happen before Peres is forced to step down as Labor Party Chairman, possibly in favor of the party’s loony Left wing. Of course, no one knows what’s going on in Arik’s mind at any given time, so the situation is, as it always is over here, dynamic.

The Kennedy Cult. Been watching CNN all morning (God bless cable), and they’ve been all over the 40th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination, which is understandable, but the liberal bias is all over this one. There’s nothing even approaching an objective analysis of Kennedy’s legacy, which I think is a mixed bag at best, and the chief witness is Robert Dallek, a thoroughly unimaginative liberal historian who has recently written a book claiming that, in his second term (which I think there is no guarantee he would have won) Kennedy woulf have made peace with Cuba, withdrawn from Vietnam, and ended the Cold War; which, of course, is quite obviously Messianic liberal balderdash. The fact that CNN seems to consider this raving partisan an objective voice on this question pretty much says it all. I think all in all, Kennedy’s record isn’t terrible. He did an excellent job on the Cuban missile crisis and took a tougher line on Russia than his predecessors (something his worshippers never bother to mention), but he punted the Bay of Pigs and basically coasted through most of the rest of his presidency. Nixon and Reagan’s records on foreign policy simply dwarf Kennedy’s, and the desperate attempts of the Kennedy worshippers to ascribe their achievements to Kennedy are just ludicrous. I think they also show a shocking inability to apportion blame for Vietnam as firmly on Kennedy as they do on Johnson, who they always despised for reasons of regional snobbery. Add to this the fact that Kennedy was a very sick man and probably physically unfit to be president, and the picture becomes decidedly less than luminous. Of course, the thing that no one wants to admit is that the main reason for Kennedy’s sustained legend and popularity is the trauma of his assassination, understandable, of course, but it shouldn’t, as it clearly has, get in the way of an objective assessment of his presidency.

Friday, November 14, 2003

Europe is Dead

It is time, my friends, for the unthinkable to be thought, for the unspeakable to be spoken. It had become unfortunately but abundantly clear that this world can no longer tolerate the cost, in human, financial, moral, and strategic terms, of the continued existence of Europe. How can such uncontemplatable things be contemplated, you ask? Consider the following: Europe is the single greatest diplomatic and political obstacle to the War on Terror, this was proven during the War in Iraq, where the objections of Europe were far more violent then those of any other country and European obstructionism in the United Nations emboldened Saddam Hussein and guaranteed that the situation would result in open hostilities. Europe in the world’s leading exporter of anti-Semitism outside of the Islamic world, it is openly engaged in genocidal rhetoric towards Israel and brutal oppression and violence towards its own Jewish populations, it lends legitimacy to such sentiments across the globe. Europe’s outdated and bloated Socialist economic system is dragging down the entire world economy and threatening it with imminent collapse. Europe enables, through political and financial assistance, Islamic fundamentalism and its attendant terrorist movements, thus threatening the freedom and physical safety of the entire non-Muslim world. Europe supports and encourages dangerous expansions of United Nations power which could easily lead to a degradation and ultimate loss of national sovereignty for its member nations. This is what two thousand years of European civilization has led to: a cowardly, spiteful, violent but utterly impotent failed society based on twin pillars of suicidal relativism and amoral appeasement. Clearly, Europe is simply an obsolete concept, a dangerous holdover from another time that is now nothing less than an existential threat to the rest of the world.

So, what is to be done? Fortunately, due to declining birthrates and aging populations, much of Europe’s population will die in the next 10-20 years, vastly simplifying the problem at hand. The remaining European population could easily be resettled in such unpopulated areas of the world as Siberia, the de-forested areas of the Amazon rainforest, and, for those with marketable skills, the US and Canada. Should these prove inadequate, extermination camps are always a possibility, a method which, although distasteful, is hardly without European precedent. The large Muslim minorities in Europe would no doubt be happy to be repatriated to their countries of origin, where they could live freely as Muslims without suffering the terrible racism and prejudice of which they constantly complain. The empty land and leftover infrastructure could easily be filled by settling immigrants from India and China, thus relieving them of their problems of overpopulation and giving the continent a hardworking and cultured population who have, thus far, proved themselves uninterested in genocide, imperialism, starting world wars, or the other more noticeable European vices.

Now, there will clearly be Europeans who object to this plan but, as all thinking people must acknowledge, the needs of world peace, security and human rights, far outweigh the objections of a few extremists who would no doubt be happier elsewhere once they get used to the idea. The end of Europe is nothing more than an acknowledgement of a situation which already exists, we are simply speeding up a process which demographic and political forces would eventually bring into existence in any event. This method, however, accomplishes the task with a minimum of bloodshed and chaos, and the rewards in terms of diplomacy, security, and peace can hardly be exaggerated. The sad truth is, Europe is not just bad for the Europeans, or bad for the West in general, Europe is bad for the world, and, I believe, my modest proposal is precisely the tonic needed to treat the disease. The European Question can be solved, it merely requires a little far sighted leadership and the placement of international concerns and multilateral prerogatives above narrow and parochial privileges. As some historical figure or another once said: if you will it, it is no fairy tale. Or something to that effect.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

The Lebanonization of Iraq? So, I've been thinking lately about Iraq, and I keep noticing similarities to Israel's war in Lebanon, or Operation Peace for Galilee, which started in 1982. Obviously, there is serious destabilization in the country, which was expected, and splintering along ethnic lines, which also was expected, and a growing resentment among ordinary Iraqis for the American presence (which I expected, although I'm not sure the administration did) which is similar to what happened to Israel in '82. Basically, Israel made the mistake of not getting out fast enough. They tried not only to destroy the PLO, which they succeed brilliantly in doing (it was only resurrected at the hands of the Leftists who signed the Oslo Treaty ten years later) but also to permanently change the political situation there, which was impossible to do. I think America might be attempting a similar fools game. We might want to face the fact that Iraq was never a real country in the first place, it was post-colonial aberration cobbled together by imperialist powers and held together by a totalitarian dictatorship of the ugliest kind. The best move might be to partition the country into three, its Kurdish section in the North and the Shiite portion in the South being independent of the Sunni Arab center. Obviously, the biggest obstacle to this is the desire of all three groups to have a share in Iraq's oil revenues and the problem of ethnic minority groups, but I think these can be worked out into some sort of working status quo.

Buying Jeans in the Promised Land. On a lighter note, I've discovered that buying jeans in Israel is something of an adventure. Apparently, all jeans in this country are sold according to waist size, they are all a uniform length, which is, to put it mildly, long. What this means in practicality is a) when you try the things on everything looks like shit, since everything's too long, so its basically impossible to choose anything and b) you have to have everything shortened, which means waiting a few days and paying more money. Forgive if this sounds whiny, but its one of those things that you just assume would be very commensensical to have but for some reason Israelis don't think they need it, like shower curtains, bathtubs and televisions you don't have to pay taxes for. (Anyone who's been here knows what I mean, the lack of bathtubs is particularly egregious, you have to dry the bathroom floor evertime with a cross between a mop and a squeegee.) Ok, I'm done now. But really, its a great country, come, spend money. They have showers in nice hotels, I swear...

Bill the Butcher on Bush's Trip to England. Apparently, enormous masses of Leftwing Neo-Nazis are expected to turn out for President Bush's upcoming trip to England, thus proving once and for all that Britain's greatness is highly unlikely to return in the near future. No doubt its all the Jew's fault anyways. All I can say is that the following expresses my sentiments far better than I ever could:

"If I had the guns Mr. Tweed, I'd shoot every last one of 'em..."
-Bill the Butcher, Gangs of New York

Now that is gonna come back to haunt me.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

The Historiography of the Historians. I'm about two weeks into studies right now (which is why blogging has been practically non-existent), and I'm becoming more and more struck by the difference between the Israeli History and Jewish History departments. The Israeli history professors absolutely tie themselves into knots of political correctness and post-Zionist (I am resisting the urge for scare quotes) goobledygook. The Jewish history professors on the other hand feel free to express their take on things without falling into paroxysms of trendy academic Leftspeak. I have one professor who expressed her absolute belief in the fact that the Arab States wanted a peace treaty with Israel in the '50s but Ben-Gurion rebuffed them. This is basically the line taken by Benny Morris, Avi Shlaim, and the rest of their post-Zionist proteges. The problem is that it amounts to history boiled down to propaganda, since those who cite it never elaborate on the facts that the Arabs demanded as prerequisites to negotiation that Israel cede the Negev to Egypt and assent to the return of the Arab refugees, in other words, half Israel in size and quadruple its Arab population, in other words, set the stage for another war. The deal Hitler offered the Czechs was better than that. In other words, the Arabs wanted a peace treaty on totally unreasonable terms that would have led to another, likely catastrophic military confrontation. The only way you don't deem that worthy of mention is ideological, either your own or the fear not fitting into the general ideological trend. That's just an anecdotal example, I admit, but it is, unfortunately, the generally dominating trend among Israeli academic, who seem embarrassed to express any idea that might present Israel or Israeli policy in a halfway favorable light. Of course, this leads to bad history and bad teaching of history, nothing new of course, but nothing to be proud of either.

Imposing A Status Quo. Had an interesting meeting today with a lecturer on counter-terrorism, who thinks that an agreement with the Palestinians is not going to be forthcoming in the near future and therefore Israel should impose a status quo along the lines of the Oslo Accords, where the IDF controls the borders of the West Bank, retains the unpopulated areas in perpetuity and essentially lets the bastards simmer on the other side of the wall until they realize that its in their interests to cut a deal. I think this isn't a terrible idea (its certainly better than Yossi Beilin's Geneva Capitulations, or anything the UN/EU Axis of Idiocy is likely to come up with) but it comes with two assumptions: 1) An end to settlement activity in the area Israel does not intend to retain under any circumstances and 2) a serious hasbara initiative on the part of the Israeli government, ideally involving an information ministry under direct Prime Ministerial control. I think given the current situation, this is probably what is going to happen (barring the Palestinians doing something really dumb, which I don't put past them) although I wouldn't be surprised if some sort of more total withdrawal occurs later on in the game. At any rate, I agree with his main point, which is that no agreement is going to be signed anytime soon, so we'd better start coming up with solutions that Israel can implement unilaterally and that aren't influenced by the sort of apocalyptic hysterics we've been getting lately from the Left.

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Fifty-nine percent of Europeans say that Israel is a larger threat to world peace than North Korea, Iran or Afghanistan, according to a European Commission survey of approximately 7,500 Europeans, scheduled to be made public on Monday.

Given a list of 15 countries, including Iran and North Korea, Israel was listed as the greatest threat to world peace, the Spanish daily El Pais reported.

The EU has denied allegations that it suppressed the results of the survey.

This is most humourous, of course, because the greatest threat to world peace is, in fact, EU-darling the United Nations, which has started more wars, provided more cover to more dictators, and enabled more terrorist organizations than any other institution in the past half-century. European cowardice and racism is, of course, a close second.