As always, Andrew Sullivan gets it absolutely right.
Monday, March 31, 2003
Once again, David Horowitz sounds the alarm. I retract my previous statement. These people should all be arrested. And the sooner the better.
Sunday, March 30, 2003
"Uday Hussein, faithfully obeying his father, immersed himself from April 2002 in creating a vast guerrilla-terrorist army 800,000 strong."
--The heartfelt thanks of the Hussein family must go, once again, to the French. For the gift of time.
Not much time for writing today, but I have a brief thought on anti-semitism in the anti-war movement. There seems to be a big debate at the moment in the US Jewish community on whether the war is good for the Jews, due to the almost certainty that the war will cause increased anti-semitism on the part of those opposed to it. What no one seems to be saying is that if there is a rise of anti-semitism in the anti-war movement, this is a problem not with the Jews but with the anti-war movement. They are the ones who need to confront and deal with this hatred in an honest manner. Their failure to do so so far indicates to me two things, 1) the anti-war movement, at heart, does not see anything particularly wrong with being anti-semitic, so long as you sign off on the rest of the radical left-wing program; and 2) anti-semitism is now so integral to the anti-war ideology that to remove it would be a danger to the very foundations of the movement itself.
This final point is particularly relevant to the major personalities of the anti-war movement, men such as Edward Said or Noam Chomsky who, were anti-semites to be purged utterly from the movement, would likely find themselves out in the cold. All ideologies are built on ideologists, and the anti-war movement has more then its fair share of theorists whose opinions in regard to Jews cannot stand the type of scrutiny necessary for the movement to truly cleanse itself. Nor, in my opinion, does a movement which is fundamentally predicated on its moral superiority show any signs of seeing itself in need of such a cleansing. Rather, it seems to view the rest of us as very much in need of some sort of moral baptism, a washing away of sins without which we will remain residents of the great, government manipulated unwashed. There may be, as Michael Walzer has put it, a decent Left; but much energy will need to be expended to find it, and I see no indication of anyone willing to undertake the task anytime in the near future.
Saturday, March 29, 2003
"There is the war between the allies and Saddam Hussein, and there is the other, hidden war between the opponents of war in the media and those in the field who seem to be prosecuting it with remarkable success."
Very true, but we're seeing more then this. We're seeing a once-hegemonic ideology fighting to hold on to the few institutions it still dominates. And like a cornered dog, they are fighting ugly.
"Corrie was in Gaza on behalf of a group called the International Solidarity Movement, at whose offices, the Associated Press reports, the Israeli Defense Forces yesterday captured a senior terrorist from Islamic Jihad."
Peace activists, my ass. Its amazing the press still falls for this nonsense, you'd think they were biased against Israel or something.
"British military interrogators claim captured Iraqi soldiers have told them that al-Qaeda terrorists are fighting on the side of Saddam Hussein's forces against allied troops near Basra," the Sydney Morning Herald reports. "At least a dozen members of Osama bin Laden's network are in the town of Az Zubayr where they are coordinating grenade and gun attacks on coalition positions, according to the Iraqi prisoners of war."
Confirmation. And do you really think that if Saddam had nukes he wouldn't give them to Osama in a New York minute?
This is the email address of the alumni association. I fully recommend contacting them, since they are usually more sensible then the university administration, and they also hold the purse strings. Meaning they can actually get something done by threatening to withhold their money.
The letter below is not mine, but I agree with most of the sentiments declared therein. I am not going to send it, however, because the issue to me is not that views like this are expressed, but that they are the only views expressed. Instead of campaigning against individual neo-nazi leftists, we should be demanding that the stranglehold on university appointments held by the left (illegally, I might add) be broken and a real diversity of views be allowed on campus. Any of you who disagree, however, are by all means free to send it.
PLEASE FELL FREE TO CUT AND PASTE THIS LETTER, and email it to email@example.com
To: Columbia University President Lee Bollinger
Re: Columbia University professor Nicholas De Genova
I would like to call attention to one of the faculty at Columbia University. The included link goes to an article quoting Professor De Genova as stating
"The only true heroes are those who find ways that help defeat the U.S. military" and "I personally would like to see a million Mogadishus."
The article continues to explain how he wishes to see the US lose this war, with a great loss of life to American troops. To be within the borders of the United States and openly advocate the defeat of our military goes beyond the calls for peace and voices of the anti-war movements. Rather, it crosses into the categories of sedition and treason, which is a dangerous line to step over.
I am requesting either a further explanation and clarification of his words, or a disciplinary action by the university against him. Furthermore, should Columbia University fail to take action against such comments, and distance itself from such views, I will be forced to begin boycotting Columbia University, politically and commercially.
Thank you for your time.
"Where but in America could these comments be publicly proclaimed without government storm troopers storming the lectern? Isn't this the most telling contrast between what we stand for and what we're fighting against? You've got to love the first amendment but it's awfully hard sometimes."
An emailer on the Columbia U KKK rally, I mean "teach-in". He's right of course. The very fact of these idiots' existence disproves their theories. However, this does not mean we should not express our criticism and disapproval of them in no uncertain terms, we have 1st Amendment rights as well. I advise anyone reading this to email Columbia and express your outrage in terms as unyielding and ferocious as you deem fit.
"Peace is not patriotic," DeGenova began. "Peace is subversive, because peace anticipates a very different world than the one in which we live--a world where the U.S. would have no place."
"U.S. patriotism is inseparable from imperial warfare and white supremacy," he said. "U.S. flags are the emblem of the invading war machine in Iraq today. They are the emblem of the occupying power. The only true heroes are those who find ways that help defeat the U.S. military."
--One of the speakers at yesterday's brainwashing session (they call it by the Orwellian name "teach-in") at Columbia University. I don't think I need to point out that what is being urged here is, incontrovertibly, treason.
I normally despise the opinions of both Nat Hentoff and The Village Voice, but this article is startling in its moral clarity and honest outrage. I don't agree, however, on one very important point: Saddam is a threat to the US and its allies, if not now then definately five years down the road. And its our responsibility, in light of the horrifying possibilities opened up by 9/11, to dispense with him preemptively, before he has a chance to realize any of his anti-Western ambitions.
"Kofi Annan has already made it clear he's more outraged by the possibility of an errant U.S. missile than he is by reports that Baath-party Brown Shirts are abducting the wives and children of Iraqi men and giving them a choice: Get mowed down by an Abrams or see your wife raped or son killed."
--This is the same Kofi Annan who stood by and watched while 500,000 Rwandans were slaughtered, and now presumes to preach to Israel about human rights. Why are we bothering to note his existence any longer, now that the UN is for all intents and purposes, effectively dissolved?
Hmmm, seems the Iraqi army is adopting tactics suspiciously similar to Al Queda and Hamas...Its almost as if they were training together and sharing information...Naaaah. No doubt left wingers are toasting these brave terrorists at cocktail parties the world over.
Friday, March 28, 2003
"One ought to be able to hold in one's head simultaneously the two facts that Dali is a good draughtsman and a disgusting human being."
Orwell on Salvador Dali. Turns the phrase and twists the knife perfectly, and all in a single sentance. Marvellous.
"The fallacy is to believe that under a dictatorial government you can be free inside. Quite a number of people console themselves with this thought, now that totalitarianism in one form or another is visibly on the up-grade in every part of the world. Out in the street the loudspeakers bellow, the flags flutter from the rooftops, the police with their tommy-guns prowl to and fro, the face of the Leader, four feet wide, glares from every hoarding; but up in the attics the secret enemies of the regime can record their thoughts in perfect freedom -- that is the idea, more or less. And many people are under the impression that this is going on now in Germany and other dictatorial countries."
--From my favorite writer, the indispensible George Orwell. I think most of the artistic, or "Hollywood" left, suffers from this fantasy. Does Susan Sarandon really think she could practice her art in Iran or Iraq? Does Rage Against the Machine think that Castro would tolerate their whole ethos of rebellion and revolution for its own sake were it directed against his regime? If they do, they are greatly naive. My guess is that such thoughts are inconveniant to their calculations, and therefore ignored.
Unless I'm much mistaken, this is the same India that has announced its willingness to use nuclear weapons over Kashmir. And war is not the solution to any problem? Lets see if he says that the next time China invades.
Another organizer stated that "Bush is no better than Osama and those 19 hijackers." Mitchel Cohen, from Green Party U.S.A., claimed that "corporations and terrorism are the same — corporations armed Saddam Hussein."
Putting aside the neo-fascist nature of the Green Party, one might note that corporations did not arm Saddam Hussein; the French, Germans and Russians did.
A middle-aged female protester passed three orthodox Jews who were observing the activities and gave them a little on-the-spot instruction: "I know you're against the war — true Jews are!"
From the NYC protests yesterday. Apparently the left now presumes to decide who is a Jew or not. Considering that the Jews have been fighting over this for the better part of 5,000 years, that's pretty ambitious. But then, humility has never been liberalism's strong suit.
Finally! The silent majority strikes back.
Throughout the past two years, Victor Davis Hanson has been an indispensible source of commen sense, knowledge, and resolve. This article is no exception. I agree completely.
"And what do they do in Europe when they want to get something off their chest? Oh, I don't know: beat some Jews with bars; carve a Star of David into some girl's wrist; burn a few synagogues; deface a Statue of Liberty copy; defile a 9/11 memorial."
"I guess those of us my age remember uprisings in Eastern Europe back in the 1950s when they rose up and they were slaughtered." Therefore, "I am very careful about encouraging people to rise up. We know there are people in those cities ready to shoot them if they try to rise up." He added, however, "Anyone who's engaged in an uprising has a whole lot of courage, and I sure hope they're successful."
Donald Rumsfeld on possible popular uprisings against Saddam. The lefties might do well to remember this the next time they express skepticism about the lack of popular resistance to Saddam. They're lucky enough to live in a country where they can act like treasonous fools without fear of mass extermination, they can't even begin to grasp the psychological prison that is a country like Iraq under Saddam.
Thursday, March 27, 2003
This is the best of them. Includes a concise review of the Moynihan Report, one of the watershed moments in the decline of American liberalism. A must-read.
There's a series of wonderful tributes to DP Moynihan at National Review. Here's the best of his many great lines:
"Liberalism faltered when it turned out it could not cope with truth."
Says it all.
Ah, the French...I have an ethnic relations professor who says that the French don't believe they have minorities. Their culture is so open, so tolerant, so accepting of all peoples into the rubric of greater French culture, there's no need for them to consider their citizens as belonging to a minority. If its true that the French really believe this, then we are dealing with a country that not only has delusions of grandeur, but is pathologically psychotic and delusional.
"There is one thing more, however, and Podhoretz is not the least averse to bringing it forward: Israel. It was at the time of the Six-Day War in 1967--the bombings, the boycotts--that for the first time American Jews were able to grasp the peril of Israel, a new nation hanging on from crisis to crisis. American support was indispensable--and yet on the American Left, a nascent anti-Semitism had begun to appear."
From an old article on Norman Podhoretz, by none other then the late, great Daniel Patrick Moynihan. Unfortunately, Podhoretz is in a minority in understanding this. He and a handful of others have stood alone against the blindness and oblivious loyalties of his fellow American Jews for over 30 years. The rest of American Jewry is, unfortunately, still sleeping with the enemy. I don't know what form the ultimate betrayel of the liberal Jewish majority will be, but it is coming, and it will take a generation to put the pieces back together when it occurs.
Just one of many I'm afraid. I can't say this enough, one can be as anti-semitic as you want, but as long as you're a leftist you are completely acceptable and mainstream.
"And if they can convince people to join them in public antiwar displays which are painful or disgusting or embarrassing or which cause the general public to react negatively, this has the effect of causing many or most of these new recruits to become bonded to the group, and thus potentially to coming to accept the larger agenda of the parent organization, which is to say, the WWP."
Bingo. But it goes deeper then this. The Marxist forces (ANSWER and the Worker's World Party being first among them) behind the anti-war movement hope to leverage the public violence around the war into a full scale revolution. It worked in Russia and they're hoping it will work here. I don't think I need to point out that this is also, by any objective or legal definition, treason.
An excellent critique of the most overrated writer in America today. I confess that I am at a loss to explain Tom Friedman's vaunted reputation. He is routinely wrong in his predications, sloppy in his history, and politically biased in his assessments. I would add to this the fact that he is, quite simply, a terrible writer. His prose is choppy, pedantic, and cliche-ridden in the extreme. Frankly, I find his work excrutiating to read on a purely aesthetic level. As for the substance of his analysis, "pop sociology" is the best description i've heard so far. I think his fame derives from one thing, he writes for the NY Times and his ideas routinely prop up the assumptions and prejudices of the elitist, center-left audience that reads him.
This article is right on. Al Jazeera has cache among Western intellectuals as some kind of moderating force, in reality (and you can see it easily on Israeli cable, along with Syrian state television, which is really funny) its as biased, racist, and propagandistic as any of the state media outlets its supposedly subverting.
Congratulations Saddam, you just pissed off the US Marines.
"4-The United States armed Saddam. This one grew over time, but when Iraq was on it's weapons spending spree from 1972 (when its oil revenue quadrupled) to 1990, the purchases were quite public and listed over $40 billion worth of arms sales. Russia was the largest supplier, with $25 billion. The US was the smallest, with $200,000. A similar myth, that the U.S. provided Iraq with chemical and biological weapons is equally off base. Iraq requested Anthrax samples from the US government, as do nations the world over, for the purpose of developing animal and human vaccines for local versions of Anthrax. Nerve gas doesn't require technical help, it's a variant of common insecticides. European nations sold Iraq the equipment to make poison gas."
Yet another example of how left wing control of the media and academia leads to the enshrinement of lies as facts in the public mind and gives the left power and control far beyond their meager numbers.
An interesting analysis from one of Haaretz's best writers. I'm a little more worried then he is. Iraq is clearly adopting a delay strategy, the idea being that the longer the war goes on and the higher the casualty lists go, the less support the US will have at home and abroad and the more the Arab world will slide towards conflagration. I think they're right and as a result we should hit Baghdad with everything we've got now and end this thing. The Iraqis think time is on their side and are playing their cards accordingly, the only response to that strategy is immediate initiative.
A giant was lost today. Senator Moynihan was the first major figure to raise serious misgivings about welfare, affirmative action, and most of all the United Nations. I recommend his book A Dangerous Place for anyone who wants to know just how scary the UN can be. A great, courageous, honest politician. Its a shame there aren't more like him.
Wednesday, March 26, 2003
"If you don't own a gun. Get one. If you do. Get another."
Ground rules for Buy a Gun for Michael Moore Day. Yep, I love America.
"Limited wars, by Mead's reckoning, fatally wounded three presidencies since 1945 — Truman's, Johnson's, and Nixon's."
Jonah Goldberg, who thinks the gloves should come off. I'm not there yet, but if we are being slowed up by orders from commanders who aren't in the field and are tying the hands of the men who are, then this is a serious problem. This quote is almost right, Nixon wasn't taken down by Vietnam, but the point is well taken.
"I will toss at you one rather paranoid concern: that the Left — or let's call them NPR liberals — "own" most of American education, K through graduate school, giving the NPR America more weight than it might naturally have."
From the ever-inspiring National Review. No might about it. This is artificial magnification of power through control of the means by which power is leveraged in a society. Classic Stalinism, by the way.
"According to the annual ADL "Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents", issued Wednesday, a total of 1,559 anti-Jewish incidents against Jews and Jewish institutions were reported in the United States in 2002, a slight increase from the 1,432 incidents in 2001. The increase on campus was higher, at 24%."
From the Jerusalem Post. I don't know when the organized Jewish establishment is going to start talking about this, but its clear that instiutions of higher learning are the single largest repository of anti-Jewish racism in America, and its only going to get worse.
A concise and brilliant analysis of one side of the culture war. I grew up among these people, and this piece is dead on. This class is far larger in Europe and the Third World then it is in America, which I think explains a lot. Friedrich Hayek basically theorized this would happen forty years ago, how state ownership and control eventually creates a stratified overclass suspiciously resembling the feudalism that the state was supposedly intervening to prevent. Chalk up another point for Friedrich Von.
So, I'm sure that tommorrow there'll be a march on Paris denouncing the Basra massacre...oh, I forgot, its only a massacre if the Israelis do it and it didn't really happen.
Still decidedly quiet on this front. I am worried about what will happen when Baghdad is invaded, but the Israelis don't seem worried about anything. I think two years of non-stop carnage have jaded them completely, they see Saddam as yet another in a series of existential dangers, and at least they have some distance from him, so why worry? Plus, they have Arik Sharon in power, who, despite (or perhaps because of) his reputation, most Israelis see as a comforting, benevelent grandfather who will keep them safe no matter what. More on that subject when I have the time.
Tuesday, March 25, 2003
DAVID DUKE (former KKK leader) -- "By any standard, this Iraq war is of no
benefit to the United States of America, nor is it of any benefit to the
commercial oil industry. So, for whose benefit does America wage this war?
The answer is Israel, Israel, Israel! Radical Jewish supremacists in
Israel launched this drive for war. Their agents all over the world, both
in government and media, have been the real power behind this war."
Tell me what the difference is between this and your average statement by Noam Chomsky, Edward Said, Pat Buchanan, or a host of other leftist or paleocon "anti-Zionists"? The answer is that there isn't any, not a word. Amazing, all it took to get the communists and the KKK on the same page was anti-semitism.
I agree completely. Like the persecution of the Jews of the Arab nations, the persecution of Jews in communist nations is still being resolutely ignored not only by academia and the press, but by mainstream Jewish organizations as well. Its high time that Jewish organizations in the West, and particularly in the United States, began to acknowledge that Jewish civilization is vast, and we need to fight for all of it, not just the part we are familiar and comfortable with.
"Emblazoned on signs and T-shirts throughout the crowds I faced were images of, to name only the most offensive, Yasser Arafat, Fidel Castro, Che Guevara, and Mumia Abu Jamal, who oddly can claim some level of moral superiority to the others in that he committed only a single murder."
From a cop who was posted outside the Oscars. Best line I've heard all day.
A lot of people have been charting Paul Krugman's descent into lunacy over the past few years, but the fact that he's crazy doesn't bother me. Its that special combination of arrogance and hypocrisy that he's so good at that makes the Krug such grating reading (not to mention the fact that he's as good a writer as your average academic, which is to say not). Here he manages to construct an end-of-the-American-Republic scenario around the pro-war movement, while utterly ignoring the communist, anarchist, anti-semitic, anti-democratic, pro-terrorist leadership of the anti-war movement, and never mentioning that these people are in de facto control of almost all major American universities and public television and radio. According to Krugman, capitalism in the media is the end of democracy, but a movement whose openly stated goal is the destruction of American democracy doesn't merit a mention. They should hang this column up in the Smithsonian's Slow Death of Liberalism wing. No wonder he writes for the New York Times, they deserve eachother.
"Just a little context on the opposition. Really, they are just a bunch of armed thugs. The only reason the Fedayeen is able to cause the trouble they are is because our troops are being so careful to not harm innocents. Understand, the Fedayeen's tactics are designed to take advantage of our superior morality. Saddam's evil will lose out, the clock is ticking."
On the terrorist-style units fighting against the coalition forces in Southern Iraq. I find this wonderfully ironic from a historical perspective. The terrorist groups who used to invade Israel in the '50s, kill a few people, and then scoot back over the border into Gaza or Jordan were also called fedayeen. The name means "self-sacrificers", since odds were good they would be killed during the operations. It means almost the same thing as shaheed, the Arabic term for suicide bombers. And we're already hearing rumors these groups may have learned their tactics from Al Queda. There's no place quite like the Middle East.
Great article on the Blair/Chirac rivalry. Its clear we've reached a decisive turning point in the re-structuring of the post-Cold War world. It is my sincere hope that as a result of this restructuring the French go down in flames.
Excellent news from Britain, and from Pravda, I mean The Guardian, no less. I think the reporter is right to point out that this may not be solid support, but it's still a very good sign that the British public is a lot smarter then the BBC gives them credit for. One factor this article unfairly leaves out is Tony Blair himself. He has shown himself a superb statesman and a visionary leader over the past few weeks and Britains appreciate a leader who's willing to debate his ideas and also stick to them in the face of seemingly insurmountable opposition. When the dust finally settles, our Tony will be the hero of this war, mark my words.
I have a weakness for movies, so I have to write a few words on the Oscars. First, I have to confess that I've only seen two films in contention, The Pianist and Gangs of New York. I thought The Pianist was overrated, it was too long in the second half and its whole tone was too cold and emotionally distant for me to accept in a film about the Holocaust. I found a great deal of it extremely problematic morally, for instance, the main character's indifferance to the Warsaw Ghetto Revolt, which, however you cut it, is one of the shining lights of Jewish (or human) heroism in the face of evil. I was even more put off by the ending, where the pianist goes off searching for the Nazi soldier who hid him during the war while being utterly indifferent to the fate of his entire family which has been shipped to Auschwitz and, in all likelihood, exterminated. It all adds up to a deeply disturbing (but typically Polanski) POV in which evil is inevitably triumphant and good is ultimately futile and pointless in the face of its power. This is all well and good in a film like Chinatown, but to deny the power of good in the context of the Holocaust is more then I'm willing to accept.
Gangs of New York, on the other hand, was a completely different story. To make my second confession, its swiftly becoming one of my favorite movies. I saw it again last night at the university cinema and I was stunned by how raw and passionate Scorsese's work remains after all this time. The opening battle sequence has to be one of the most simultaneously exciting/horrifying moments in modern cinema, and, seeing it again, I was amazed at how little blood you actually see. Its mostly shapes and implied action, the violence is all in the music, the cuts, the montage (to be extremely pretentious). Its spellbinding cinema, and you dont get much of that these days. Added to that, Daniel Day-Lewis was simply extraordinary. A massive, titanic, gargantuan performance. He's so good it's almost to the film's detriment, his presence is so electrifying, the scenes he not in start to seem dull by comparison. The part where he is almost killed and he's on his knees bleeding and lets out this animal shriek, like a great, wounded lion; I got chills seeing it again. Its by far the greatest film performance in decades.
However, the movie is, unfortunately not a masterpiece. It could have been Scorsese's Citizen Kane, but its more his Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid. A great, sprawling, ambitious work that tries to sum up his entire career up to this point and make a grand statement on a crisis moment in American history not unlike our own. Although the house of cards doesn't quite hold up, the unrealized nature of it adds a layer of poignancy and mystery that in a way makes the film more endearing and special then its more perfect counterparts. Like Pat Garrett, I have never seen anything like it.
Monday, March 24, 2003
"Over the last few weeks, Mr. Beck, whose three-hour program is heard five days a week on more than 100 stations, has helped promote many similar demonstrations under the banner of Rally for America. Some have been financed by radio stations owned by his employer, Clear Channel Communications, the nation's largest owner of radio stations, in an arrangement that has been criticized by those who contend that media companies should not engage in political advocacy."
The NY Times on the pro-war movement. What makes this hilarious of course, is that the Grey Lady has shown exactly zero interest in who is backing the anti-war movement and what their motivations and ideologies are. But suddenly, with the pro-war movement, it becomes a matter of the highest importance, in fact, over half the article is dedicated to this subject. The double-standard is absolutely spellbinding. The italics are mine, of course, since, with the exception of NPR, no media outlet engages in left-wing political advocacy with more oblivious vitriol then the NY Times.
--As an addendum, if your reading this in the states, get up get out and get involved in the pro-war movement now! If the last 24 hours haven't convinced you of the moral imperative to do so, the next 24 definately will.
Sums it up brilliantly. The worst thing about the left has always been their arrogant insistance that they simply posess insight and knowledge you don't. Even when they're lying through their teeth.
Everything here is as calm as can be expected. Everyone (including me) is still ignoring the orders to carry their gas masks around and people have stopped watching TV 24/7. Basically things are settling back to normal, which means, of course, infighting and political backstabbing. At the moment, everyone who wants to get in the news is savaging the Defense Minister for telling people to open their gas masks and thus waste millionsof shekels, etc...No one ever said democracy was pretty and Israeli democracy certainly isn't. Plus the Histadrut (Israel's biggest labor union, they used to run the country, now they just make a lot of noise) is threatening a strike, which is pretty much what the Histadrut does these days. Apparently they are deep in negotiations with Bibi Netanyahu over the new economic plan, which they feel does not take enough money away from people who work to give to people who dont. Plus ce change.
I cant tell if these folks are brilliant or totally out of their minds. Either way, there's some very sobering but I would say cautiously optimistic assessments of the situation on the ground. The POW incident is thoroughly disgusting, and of course its only going to serve to piss the Americans off. (Thank God we're not the French.) Showing them on TV was the stupidest move the Iraqis have made so far. It was also a violation of international law but I doubt your going to see any protest over it in San Francisco tomorrow.
Sunday, March 23, 2003
Reports are of some very serious casualties today, including POWs. I don't think this is going to be nearly as "painless" as the last few dust-ups we've had, we'll see how the American public takes it.
"Major Cate did not identify the detained soldier or suggest a motive, but military sources described him as a sergeant attached to an engineering unit, an American citizen, and a Muslim convert. He was found in a scud bunker when senior officers took a head count after the attack."
Fron the NY Times story, the italics are mine. Obviously, we shouldn't make too much out of this prematurely. and I dont mean to imply all Muslims are traitors, I actually think the organized extreme left is much more dangerous then anyone in the muslim community. But I have been saying for a long time that fifth column actions were going to be a much more serious problem this time around, and I don't think this is the end of it. Its going to get a lot worse, in my opinion. Unlike in previous wars, there are now very significant and well-funded social movements that are fundamentally anti-American and opposed to this war. They feared public reaction over Afghanistan, now they feel they have much greater freedom of action. I can see a couple of scenarios that I don't want to go into in detail, but it could get very bad on this front very soon.
Its official, from the Jerusalem Post. Its too late at night for outrage, so I'll just say this: this is war. I hope my brethren realize it sooner rather then later.
Saturday, March 22, 2003
Wait a minute, Ralph Nader thinks that people should be forced to give other people money even if they don't agree with what's done with it? What a shock! Socialists demanding money they haven't worked for? I'm stunned!
Yet another in a long line of self-righteous left-wing hypocrites. Thank the Lord even the Democrats hate him now.
"You people are some of the most disgusting examples of a waste of protoplasm I've ever had the displeasure to hear about.... If I see any of your names on a marquee, I'm going to boycott the movie. I will completely stop going to movies if I have to. In most cases it certainly wouldn't be much of a loss."
Charlie Daniels on anti-war celebrities. God bless that man.
According to Haaretz, two Jewish youths were attacked by anti-war protestors today in Paris. When I say neo-nazi left I mean it.
Two interesting lines in Fridays Jerusalem Post. The first from a PA official on Arafat's successor:
"We have red lines that no Palestinian leader can cross. These include, first and foremost, the right of return for the refugees...Even the most moderate Palestinian leader wouldn't dare cross the red lines." (Italics mine)
Very depressing stuff. Since the one issue Israel simply cannot compromise on is the refugee issue. If the Palestinians stick to this line then no amount of road maps are going to change the situation. I have a very simple view of our current impasse, the Palestinians have a right to self-determination, they do not have a right to determine themselves upon the destruction of the Jewish State. The refugees return would do exactly that, and until this demand is dropped the whole Palestinian national movement is, in my view, inherently illigitimate.
On a higher note:
"Communist regimes and the existential challenges of life under them made us keep alive those ideals and norms that used to constitute Europe decades ago. All those strange ideologies such as postmodernism or political correctness, which stem from the lack of real challenges, went past us."
From a very inspiring article by the ambassador to Israel from the Czech Republic. This is also great:
"Our first president, Tomas Garrigue Masaryk, once said that states survive on those ideals from which they were born."
I think in Israel we must remember this now more then ever.
Whenever Haaretz starts frothing at the mouth over an economic plan, you know its good news. Love him or hate him (or, if your like me, both) Netanyahu is a brilliant man who understands economics in a way most Israeli officials, who've come up through a fundamentally statist/beaurocratic system, simply don't. He's got a shitty reputation both here and in the States in many circles, but he's been proven right too many times to ignore him. He was one of the only major world politicians to predict that Arafat would use the Oslo Accords to launch another attack against Israel, and for this alone he deserves serious points not only for being right but for political courage. I seriously recommend his book A Place Among the Nations if you want to understand the ideology of the Likud Party outside of the caricature the world media portrays it as. He has an earlier book called Fighting Terrorism which, at the moment, seems frankly prophetic. Israel's been in need of a dose of Thatcherism for a long time, and I hope Bibi pulls this one off.
"Of course, San Francisco manages to make this about itself."
A local television anchor on the protests which are costing the city of peace $500,000 a day and are now close to bankrupting their very liberal network of municipal social services. Maybe SF will get a much-needed involuntary dose of Thatcherism, thanks to the anti-war movement. Probably too much to hope for.
I cant even discuss this. Their fear is totally justified, by the way. You should read about what happens to Israeli POWs.
Proof positive that the mainstream media is totally incapable of objective reporting when it comes to the extreme left. Nothing on the Marxist and anarchist groups financing these protests, nothing on Leslie Cagan being a longtime communist and the various nefarious organizations she's involved in, nothing on the ideological agendas of the groups involved...Taken all together, the coverage of the anti-war movement in the press has been a disgrace from start to finish. A total abdication of any and all standards of responsible journalism, coupled with wide-eyed indulgence and sycophancy all the way down the line. Sickening.
I agree 100%. We should have withdrawn from the UN in the '70s when it became the tool of the USSR and its Third World despot allies. Now its not only irrelevant, its dangerous. Anti-American, anti-semitic, and all on America's dime. We should withdraw our membership, withdraw our money, and throw 'em out of New York, they're stinking up the place.
Fat, unshaven communist stooge Michael Moore got a great write up for this film in Haaretz a few weeks ago. I dont think people realize how influential anti-American Americans are overseas. Moore might be an unknown in the States but he's huge in Europe and even here; and believe me, Israel is no hotbed of anti-Americanism. Noam Chomsky, the neo-nazi leftist prof at MIT is a joke in the States but in Europe he is completely mainstream. I would say the BBC and definately the French media have pretty much accepted his psycho-ideology as fact. This is a huge problem and cant be ignored if we want to win this thing.
Listening to a press conference with Gen Franks right now on the radio and it is not going well. They need to get someone out there who can tell these leftist European reporters where to get off. I've never heard such hostility from a press corps, he's keeping calm but he needs to start refuting these "when did you stop beating your wife" questions with a little more force.
Ok, time for some shameless plugs:
AllsFair a great conservative show at a socialist radio station in Allston, MA. Yes, its real, I used to be the co-host. Check out their website here.
Aviv Gefen he sounds like a merger of Oasis and Bob Dylan with Hebrew lyrics. Israel's best rock singer by a country mile. I don't know if he's available in the States, but its well worth trying to find. (No, I didn't name this site after him, every other person in Israel is surnamed Gefen.)
Amos Oz Israel's greatest novelist. Shamelessly left-wing but not a lunatic or an anti-Israel/American bloviater. In fact, he's gotton in a lot of trouble from his fellow leftists for criticizing some of their more outrageous propaganda. If you want a good intro to the conplexities at work in this neck of the woods, check out his collection of articles In the Land of Israel.
Finally. Its about time the grown-ups starting standing up to the neo-nazi left. I especially love little Eva Braun's call for "dialogue" at the end. She didn't seem much interested in dialogue at the speech by Bush 1. The left calls for democratic values when it suits them and rejects them when it doesn't. Ms. Braun is clearly a self-righteous hypocrite, thank God someone's finally dealing with these people.
This article pretty much sums up everything wrong with the NY Times. First of all, its totally wrong. Powell has long since embraced war as the only way to depose Saddam, and the only countries we've truly alienated are France, Germany and Belgium, who were alienated anyways. Second, its utterly self-centered and arrogant. Keller considers his opinions objectively true and is certain that his anecdotal experiences are representative of wider trends for which he has no evidence. Classic liberal self-objectification and self-delusion and, unfortunately, classic NY Times.
Haaretz, Israel's NY Times, has a big tendancy to shoot off its mouth. However, I think this scenario isn't unlikely, but the author seriously underestimates how much ground has been lost by anti-Israel nations in Europe like France and Germany. Blair basically got Bush to agree to the road map in order to avoid a French veto at the Security Council, a gambit which failed. After this war is done, there will be no need to appease France on anything to do with the Middle East (or anything else for that matter), France is finished as a world power. Marcus is obviously right about the need to start planning now for the day after, but there are strong voices emerging in the New Europe, and they are far more even handed in relation to Israel then France ever dreamed of being. He also doesn't mention the extent to which the Israeli public simply despises France, Germany, and Belgium, the anti-Israel European axis. They wont consent to any collaboration with them anytime in the near future.
On an added note, I recently saw a poll on Catholic Americans who are predominately pro-war. One of them was asked how he reconciled this with the Pope's opposition. He said something like "Its his job to shake his head at the evils of the world, its our job to do something about it."
Every time it wavers, my faith in humanity gets somehow restored.
Sorry, here's the link to the comment below.
Well, the neo-nazi left has begun its takeover of my hometown. I think the comments of the Episcopal bishop here are absolutely disgusting, so morally bankrupt I cant even discuss them reasonably. Apparently feeding men into plastic shredders and systemically raping virgins is not enough to raise the wrath of ths humble servant of God, but dare to erect the most powerful, successful, prosperous democracy in history and there's no end to his righteous moral outrage. I think the right reverand has already bought himself a slow boat to the fires of hell for this one. Isn't there some injunction in Christian theology against aiding evil? My knowledge of Christian theology is limited to say the least, but I cant imagine there's a major faith that doesn't at least pay lip service to the idea.
Unless I'm greatly mistaken, this is the same reverand who protested outside the Israeli embassy a year ago (in full bishopic dress, no less) in support of Yasser Arafat. In other words, murdering Jewish children is fine, but taking out a mass-murdering tyrant who's hellbent on acquiring nuclear capability is a crime against humanity. There's a word for that: Nazism.
great article in spectator.co.uk by Melanie Phillips on left-wing anti-semitism. There's no question in my mind that the left is currently the repository of the most virulent and dangerous anti-semitism outside of the Moslem world that we've seen since Nazism. Its all the more dangerous because so many Jews cant even recognize it as anti-semitism, since we've all been trained to look for jack boots and swastikas and not peace signs and hemp underwear. There's the added twist that some of the leaders of it are Jews themselves. Its important to remember that this is not unusual. In most eras of history, anti-semites of Jewish ancestry were prominent ideologists and polemicists of anti-Jewish movements. The first time the Talmud was publicly burned the instigator was a Jew who had converted to Christianity and proclaimed the Talmud a work of Satan. Karl Marx, a racist as well as an anti-semite, was of Jewish ancestry as well. In the current movement, we have the fascinating phenomenon of Jews who, rather then being converts to another faith, are converts to radical political ideologies which have caused them to turn to racism as a means of rejecting their ancestry and or proving their loyalty to their new chosen faith. All very interesting and very, very scary.
Friday, March 21, 2003
Day 2 of the Second Gulf War has almost passed here, and so far nothing has happened and pretty much no one thinks anything is going to happen. The order to carry gas masks has been almost universally ignored and everyone is going about their normal lives. The only people carrying their gas mask kits are the American students and old people. In Jerusalem people laugh at you if you carry one in public. (This is partly due to the fact that Jerusalem is a hugely unlikely target, it has a large Arab population which is violently pro-Saddam and a Scud into the Old City would make Saddam even less popular then he now, if he isn't dead). The radio and television were all news last night but they've already begun to move back to regular broadcasting. This plus the news that the missile bases that attacked us last time around have already been taken out is making everyone breath a lot easier.
The big question now for us is whether Saddam is actually still among the living. All the news I'm seeing and hearing indicate that he's either dead or severely incapacitated. Either way, he's clearly not in control of Iraqi forces in any serious way at the moment. The guy in big glasses on TV last night looks less and less like Saddam the more I look at him, and its certainly not impossible that a small cabal of loyal Ba'athists are trying to keep the illusion going as long as they can. I could be wrong, but I'm voting that Saddam is no longer among us.