Saturday, December 23, 2006

"Now: fanatics may arise in any society. They invariably arise. The question we put to the larger society is, what are you doing to suppress fanaticism?

In defence of persecuted Christians, and all others persecuted around the world, it is worth carrying into the Eve of Christmas this one simple “secular” thought. What happens in the world, and what has always happened, when no one will stand up to the fanatics."

"So "Pants" Berger is a coward of a special kind - a character out of a novel, something for a modern Tolstoy perhaps, a refined species of modern narcissist. He can also be looked at as an example of another highly-reviled category - traitor. I don't use that word loosely at all either. I don't regard Cindy Sheehan, for example, as a traitor or Michael Moore or any of those people, much as I disagree with them. They have vigorously espoused their opinions in a free society. Sandy Berger smuggled top secret documents out of our National Archives. We may never know what that was about, what was in them (or in their notes) or why he did it. He is a traitor. They are not."

On Dedication

"Shortly after 9/11, a US muslim was interviewed on radio. He was appalled at what had happened, and said "I dedicate my son to fighting the enemies of the US".

"You don't get it", I thought to myself, "you have no right to dedicate your son to anything".

East, meet West."

Friday, December 22, 2006

"INDEED: "Pundits lose grip on reality when dealing with Internet." "Bloggers should definitely be open to criticism by the mainstream media. That's America. But lumping everyone together with the crackpots is neither fair nor honest. And the fact that so many reporters and pundits can't seem to get the story right just proves the bloggers' point that too many of them don't know what they're talking about on everything else.""

Thursday, December 21, 2006

800,000 Pound House? D'oh!

"A military aide to the commander of British forces in Afghanistan appeared in court yesterday accused of spying.

Corporal Daniel James (left) interprets for Lt Gen David Richards in Afghanistan recently
Cpl Daniel James, 44, is charged under the 1911 Official Secrets Act with "prejudicing the safety of the state" by passing information "calculated to be directly or indirectly useful to the enemy".


***

Neighbours at his £800,000 house in Brighton, said his mother speaks only Farsi, the main language of Iran."
"Finally, it's worth noting that Germany is the only example of a federalist nation that fell victim to a totalitarian takeover despite its federalism. Except in cases where totalitarianism was imposed by foreign conquerors, every other transition to totalitarianism occurred under unitary governments. Even in the German case, federalism helped prevent earlier efforts at a totalitarian takeover in 1919 (by communists) and 1923 (Hitler's Beer Hall Putsch). Fascist Italy is not a counterexample, because Mussolini's dictatorship, although oppressive, never rose to the level of full totalitarianism and - not coincidentally - did not engage in mass murder and other atrocities on anything like the same scale as the Nazis did (e.g. - Italian Fascist officials actually refused to take part in the Holocaust).

The degree to which federalism impedes totalitarianism remains an open question. But if it does so to even a small extent, that fact alone might justify establishing a federalist system with strict limits on central government power - even if a unitary state would be preferable otherwise. The choice between unitary government and federalism is an important issue in many new democracies, including Iraq. In making their decision, they should take due account of Adolf Hitler's insight."
"It's not for nothing that many have termed the BCRA the Incumbent Protection Act. The restriction on political speech that keeps groups from buying advertising that names politicians violates the fundamental reason for the First Amendment -- to allow Americans to criticize their elected officials."
""The idea that in any circumstances you could be let through passport control wearing a veil is barely credible," he said. "Doing so when an all-persons bulletin for murder has been issued demonstrates that our borders are not just porous - they are non-existent.""
Sandy Burglar again: "This goes a bit beyond stuffing a few documents in socks. If you or I had done this, we'd be looking through the razor wire at the lovely terrain outside of Marion, Illinois."
"Was gang violence a real issue in Los Angeles before 1988? Of course. Was it something worth spending significant resources on and attempting to suppress? Yes.

But the monomaniacal focus on Los Angeles as the "Gang Capital of the World" created a false impression that Crips and Bloods ruled the streets. Where did that perception come from? From reporting th[at], like a hip-hop drumbeat, regularly pounded home the point."

"Ledeen, who always writes with such insight about Iran, makes the case that Ahmadinejad serves a purpose familiar to bloggers: sock puppet. The recent demonstrations have served as a check against the more radical factions of the mullahs in a power struggle that Ahmadinejad's antics help to mask. With Khameini's health failing, Ledeen argues that the US and the UK have to start pressing hard in support of the current student activists if they want to bring an end to Iranian radicals and their dreams of regional hegemony -- and that we are missing the opportunity."
"According to ABC News, British law enforcement officials say it will be a "miracle" if the holidays pass without an al Qaeda attack."
"One of the most salient characteristics of the Left is that it is peculiarly incapable of learning. In my lifetime, it has been ridiculously wrong about virtually everything, but it is as if facts and reality don’t matter. The same people who were trying to convince us of manmade global cooling in the 1970’s are now trying to convince us of manmade global warming. The same people who argued for our unilateral nuclear disarmament in the 1970’s and 1980’s are now telling us that it didn't matter that Saddam would have undoubtedly acquired nukes or that Iran and other terrorists are on the brink of doing so. The same people who successfully curtailed nuclear power plants in America are now insisting that we must be “energy independent” and that we are only in Iraq for the oil. The same people who argued that Reagan’s tax breaks would destroy the economy have, like everyone else, enjoyed the unprecedented economic growth of the past 25 years, and yet, still want to raise taxes. The same Democratic party that accommodated southern racists for decades continues to argue that race is all-important and that government should be engaged in the task of dividing people by race and gender and giving special privileges to some. And of course, the Democratic part is now the main repository and champion of mankind’s most ancient and vile prejudice, anti-Semitism."
"Merry Christmas to all."
"Local Muslim leaders lit candles yesterday at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum to commemorate Jewish suffering under the Nazis, in a ceremony held just days after Iran had a conference denying the genocide.

American Muslims "believe we have to learn the lessons of history and commit ourselves: Never again," said Imam Mohamed Magid of the All Dulles Area Muslim Society, standing before the eternal flame flickering from a black marble base that holds dirt from Nazi concentration camps. ." [ This is good news as Glenn notes. But probably too late if you peruse the last few posts... -ed. ]

Dershowitz On The Excreble Jimmah

"The next week Carter wrote a series of op-eds bemoaning the reception his book had received. He wrote that his "most troubling experience" had been "the rejection of [his] offers to speak" at "university campuses with high Jewish enrollment." The fact is that Brandeis President Jehuda Reinharz had invited Carter to come to Brandeis to debate me, and Carter refused. The reason Carter gave was this: "There is no need to for me to debate somebody who, in my opinion, knows nothing about the situation in Palestine."

As Carter knows, I've been to Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza, many times -- certainly more times than Carter has been there -- and I've written three books dealing with the subject of Middle Eastern history, politics, and the peace process. The real reason Carter won't debate me is that I would correct his factual errors. It's not that I know too little; it's that I know too much.

Carter's refusal to debate wouldn't be so strange if it weren't for the fact that he claims that he wrote the book precisely so as to start debate over the issue of the Israel-Palestine peace process. If that were really true, Carter would be thrilled to have the opportunity to debate. Authors should be accountable for their ideas and their facts. Books shouldn't be like chapel, delivered from on high and believed on faith."

A Harper With Brain Included

"“It’s unfortunate because with Hamas, and with Hezbollah in Lebanon, it has made it very difficult to have dialogue — and dialogue is ultimately necessary to have peace in the long term — but we are not going to sit down with people whose objectives are ultimately genocidal.”

“I think all of the civilized world is agreed — and it’s not just Canada — we can’t deal with organizations whose principle and only objective is terrorism and the eradication of the other side.”" [ Well why not? We saw how fabulously it worked for Chamberlain. He died in the middle of WWII not knowing whether Britain would survive because of his fascifist folly... -ed. ]

D'oh -- Part 73676

"So, Berger stole and destroyed classified material on multuple occasions — some of which had hand-written notations that are permanently lost — and his only punishment was a fine, some community service, and the temporary loss of his security clearance. At the very least, Berger should never have access to classified documents again."

Why They Hate -- Part 78936

". . . For generations, the leaders of these so-called Muslim countries have been spoon-feeding their populations a constant diet of propaganda similar to the one that generations of Germans (and other Europeans) were fed — that Jews are vermin and should be dealt with as such? In Europe, the logical conclusion was the Holocaust. If Ahmadinejad has his way, he shall not want for compliant Muslims ready to act on his wish."

On Footnote 55 and the "One Bomb State"

"Once Israel had a nuclear deterrent to conventional attack. Now however consider the words to be found in footnote 55 to the indictment of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for inciting to genocide. Footnote 55 to the indictment, the “Referral” to the International Court of Justice under the Genocide Convention described in the previous post, is the heart of the matter, the heart of darknesss.

These words, this genocidal sentiment, which I have been citing since 2002 in writing about the situation, in postulating the prospect of a second Holocuast, were uttered by the leader of what the Western press has lately taken to calling the “pragmatic conservatives” in Iran, Ayatollah Hashemi Rasfanjani:

If one day the world of Islam comes to possess the weapons currently in Israel’s possession [meaning nuclear weapons]—on that day this method of global arrogance would come to a dead end. This…is because the use of a nuclear bomb in Israel will leave nothing on the ground, whereas it will only damage the world of Islam.”

“Nothing on the ground” versus mere “damage”. In other words, as one rather dramatic version has it, Israel is “a one bomb state”. A state you can wipe off the map, along with its people, with a single nuclear device. Yes Tehran might be destroyed in return, other Muslim capitals as well perhaps, by Israeli retaliation. But at the end of that bleak day there will be “nothing on the ground” in Israel, once the homeland of five million Jews. And there will still be a billion or so Muslims, many of whom will be celebrating the outcome.

The Soviet Union was not suicidal, thus deterrence worked in the Cold War. There is no deterrent to suicidal fanatics who are willing to accept millions of casualties, aka “martyrs” to accomplish the murder of millions of Jews. All “a one bomb state” requires for its extermination is, well. one bomb." [ RTWT. Yes, Rafsanjani is the "sane" one. Welcome to the nightmare world of the Three Conjectures... -ed. HT Roger ]

I'm Betting You Can't Identify This Quote Since I Omitted The Only Phrase Not Yet Forced Down The Memory Hole

"“Let both sides unite to heed, in all corners of the earth, the command of Isaiah -- to "undo the heavy burdens, and [to] let the oppressed go free."

"In your hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course. Since this country was founded, each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony to its national loyalty. The graves of young Americans who answered the call to service surround the globe."

"In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility -- I welcome it. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it. And the glow from that fire can truly light the world.

***

... but what together we can do for the freedom of man.

"Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us here the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own
.”"

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

"Realists criticize the Bush Doctrine for its emphasis on expanding democracy. But such an approach can be found in Thucydides, who noted that an important goal of both Athens and Sparta was to establish and support regimes similar to their own: democracies in the case of Athens and oligarchies for Sparta. The inference one can draw is that the security of a state is enhanced when it is surrounded by others that share its principles and interests."

You Might Think...


... the Danes have thrown in the towel after the cartoon lunacy by running an ad like this in Tehran.

Think again.

Professor Norris conceded astronomers could not explain how such big objects formed so quickly after the Big Bang.

(via Hugh)

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Warren Again

"We may translate, “Oderint dum metuant” as, “Let them hate, so long as they fear.” It is the precise opposite of, “Win their hearts and minds.” And it is, once again, an attitude blessedly free of that panic which, I think, all Western policy towards the “Islamist” terror threat is now tending, starting with flight from Iraq.

...

What the older “just-war theorists” knew, or learned (starting with St Augustine, if you read his successive prescriptions for dealing with violent schismatics), is that war is ruthless. The very humane Clausewitz taught, that the war leader unprepared to be as ruthless as his enemy does not bring peace. He creates a quagmire, and his hesitations lead finally to defeat. The chemo-therapist does not negotiate with a cancer, nor grant it the benefit of the doubt. He does not weep for all the hairs that will fall out.

As to the enemy we presently face -- the same in the Sunni Triangle as over Manhattan in September, 2001 -- we cannot win their hearts and minds in the foreseeable future. They do not love us. Therefore let them hate, so long as we can make them fear us more than we fear them."

Today's Nutshell

"Japan was easier to occupy, but then we didn't nuke Basra and Kirkuk."

Sunday, December 17, 2006

"Imagine what the impact would have been if Olmert had rejoined, "Excuse me, but it is quite possible that at the end of the day a military strike against Iran will be the only way to prevent Iran from acquiring atomic bombs and so committing another Holocaust. Given this, your blanket opposition to the notion of military strikes constitutes Germany's effective acceptance of another Holocaust. Shame on you, Angie. Shame on Germany."

Such a statement would have changed the entire dynamic of the international discourse on Iran."

Oh, THAT Holocaust...

"Seized when Germany fell to the Allies in 1945, the documents were deposited in an archive in the German city of Bad Arolsen and have been tightly controlled for privacy reasons ever since. Sitting on 16 miles of shelving, they number 50 million pages covering 17.5 million victims, not only Jews but also millions of slave laborers, political prisoners, homosexuals and Roma. They reveal the horrible: For 90 minutes on Hitler’s birthday, a prisoner was shot every two minutes as a gift to the F├╝hrer. They tell the mundane: Lice on prisoners were counted and classified as small, medium and large."
"One would think that the threat of proliferation on the southern belly of Russia would give Putin and his regime some pause, but the Russian autocrat has his eyes on the wrong front. He sees his great conflict with Europe and the Western powers, which have come all the way to the doorstep of Russia, absorbing all of the buffer states that once shielded Russia from the West. That evolution of Westernization -- begun with the fall of the Berlin Wall -- has rattled Putin far more than it should, and it has kept his focus off of the real existential threat of a nuclear-armed radical Islam.

And we have no doubt that Ahmadinejad will share with his friends once he has a fully-developed nuclear process. His tip to the Kuwaitis only confirms his intentions to spread nuclear weapons throughout Southwest Asia in an attempt to eject the West from the area. He wants an end to the Israeli nuclear deterrent, and he's going to get it unless he's stopped. That would be true whether Putin hands him the fuel for his Messianic ambitions or not, but the day will come much more quickly now than before."
"The Palestinian Authority keeps coming closer to dissolving into two separate governments and two major bases of operation for each. Hamas already has primary control of Gaza, while Fatah holds the West Bank, although each has plenty of representation in both places. Both have their own armies, and both seek to gain full control over the state apparatus. The early elections will likely set off enough anger to end the facade of the PA altogether.

Perhaps this is the only way in which the Palestinians will get tired of war. It's unfortunate, because this could have been resolved a decade ago if Yasser Arafat had the courage to accept Ehud Barak's two-state solution. The Palestinians want it all from the Jordan to the Mediterranean, however, and they will instead reap the bitter harvest of all the violence they have sown. When they have had enough death, perhaps they will select leaders interested in peace. If that never happens, though, it seems more likely that they will exterminate themselves in an orgy of destruction."