Saturday, May 31, 2008

Bus Decimates Cooper Union

Barack Obama’s resignation from Trinity United Church of Christ over, in
part, “a cultural and a stylistic gap” raises additional doubts about him. The
obvious question is what “cultural and stylistic gap” exists now that hasn’t
existed during the last two decades,
The answer, of course, is none. Trinity United and Jeremiah Wright are what they
have always been; it is Obama — or more precisely, Obama’s political interests —
that have changed.

It’s been just over two months since Obama’s
Philadelphia speech on race — the one that was compared by the historian Garry
Wills to Lincoln’s Cooper Union address. In that speech Obama famously said he
could not more disown the Reverend Jeremiah Wright than he could disown the
black community or his own grandmother and spoke about how Trinity United
“embodies the black community in its entirely.”

Since that speech Wright
has been tossed under the bus — and now, so has Trinity United.

Wishing For Worse

The widespread conviction among Democrats that we are destined to fail in Iraq
was the key to Barack Obama's emergence as Presidential front-runner. He
postured himself as the candidate who had opposed the war from the beginning.

For the time being, Obama can dodge the problem by staying away from Iraq and speaking in platitudes before adoring audiences of hard-core Democrats. But the problem won't go away. Obama's Iraq policy is increasingly at odds with realities on the ground, and more and more voters are becoming aware of that fact. Obama can't stay away from Iraq until November. His advisers must be trying to figure out how to fit such a trip into a narrative that will hold water through the election. For now, they may just be hoping for things to get worse. But when they do finally announce a trip to Iraq, the nature of that visit will likely hold the key to how Obama intends to handle the increasingly dangerous (for him) issue of Iraq in the fall.

Weekend Bus

clipped from hotair.com

So he’s leaving because he doesn’t want TUCC to get further scrutiny, and not
because he wants to distance himself from the radical nature of the
church.  That’s not exactly a profile in courage.  Let’s recall what
Obama said just ten weeks ago about his membership at Trinity:


Given my background, my politics, and my professed values and ideals, there
will no doubt be those for whom my statements of condemnation are not enough.
Why associate myself with Reverend Wright in the first place, they may ask? Why
not join another church? And I confess that if all that I knew of Reverend
Wright were the snippets of those sermons that have run in an endless loop on
the television and You Tube, or if Trinity United Church of Christ conformed to
the caricatures being peddled by some commentators, there is no doubt that I
would react in much the same way….

This reaction combines the worst of both worlds — it says nothing that rejects
the radical rhetoric,

Smiling


The Telegraph observes European anti-Americanism, describes America as a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2008/05/30/dl3004.xml"
target=_blank>force for good
and somehow concludes Americans need to project
a better image in Europe. Americans - most likely inbound from href="http://pajamasmedia.com/instapundit/archives2/019880.php"
target=_blank>Instapundit
- respond in the comments. One of my
favourites.

I'm always slightly amused by these inane popularity polls.
Anyone who knows just a bit of the history of this country knows that our
forefathers thought very little of Europeans. Europeans were considered as
corrupt and effeminate (little has changed in 232 years). America was by design
the "anti-Europe." The fact that Europeans hate us today means we are doing
something right. John Adams must be smiling in heaven.

O'Hoover World

"It's the economy, stupid," James Carville famously said during the 1992
campaign, when a young Bill Clinton was running against the other President
Bush. The same could be said during this presidential campaign. The headlines
are full of economic bad news

Yet at the same time, the economic numbers are not so bad. A recession is defined as two quarters of contraction. But we haven't had one yet. The gross domestic product has grown, albeit only by 0.6 percent, in the last two quarters. As my U.S. News colleague James Pethokoukis blogged after the most recent numbers came in, "Dude, where's my recession?"

Polls suggest votes are not moving in response to local economic conditions.

But then Obama is advocating fiscal and trade policies -- higher taxes on high earners, more protectionism -- which are the opposite of John F. Kennedy's and the same as Herbert Hoover's. Yes, the economy matters in politics, but not in the way it used to.

Move Along Now. Nothing To See Here...

Obama's friend, neighbor, mentor and financier Tony Rezko waits for the jury to
come back in Chicago, and while he does, href="http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2008/may/29/fundraiser-faces-arrest-multiple-gaming-debts/">more
bad news arrives from Las Vegas
:




A Las Vegas judge has issued a felony arrest warrant for a politically
connected Chicago businessman whose ties to Democratic presidential contender
Barack Obama have become an issue in the campaign.

Antoin “Tony” Rezko, who is standing trial on federal corruption charges in
Chicago, is wanted in Las Vegas for failing to pay $472,275 in gambling debts to
Caesars Palace and Bally’s and related processing fees to the Clark County
district attorney’s office.

The total unpaid Strip bill comes to more than $800,000, however, because the
Bellagio obtained a judgment of default against Rezko a year ago for not
repaying $331,000 in gambling markers.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Remembering Blackjack

clipped from answers.yahoo.com
My grandfather's commanding officer Gen. John "Blackjack" Pershing, put down a Muslim rebellion in the Philippines in the first decade of the 20th century by refusing to return rebels' bodies to the families for burial. Instead, he cut their heads off and buried them in pig excrement. No paradise for them! The rebellion collapsed in short order.

The Other Side

Khalid Sheik Mohammed was subjected to this interrogation technique and was able to resist much longer than would have been expected from an individual who had not been trained to resist waterboarding. This is an indication that our enemies are being prepared for the possibility of being captured.

So, not only are Democrats insisting that we no longer use waterboarding as an interrogation technique with captured terrorists, they want Mukasey to spell out what kind of interrogation techniques we would use, which is useful information for terrorists in their training so they are prepared for such techniques in the event they are captured.

Whose side are the Democrats on anyway? They don't want us monitoring terrorist phone calls, they don't want to properly interrogate them, but they do want to inform terrorists of how we listen to them and what kind of interrogation techniques they should prepare for.

I Don't Think So Either


This was Obama's parting shot:

"Today, Sen. McCain refused to correct his mistake," Obama said in
remarks prepared for a rally Friday in Great Falls, Mont. "Just like George
Bush, when he was presented with the truth, he just dug in and refused to admit
his mistake."

Really? And when has Obama admitted that he was mistaken when he said that
the surge would fail and would cause an increase in violence in Iraq? Do you
suppose these same reporters will ask that question when they are next on a
conference call with Obama's campaign? No, I don't think so either.

Of course, McCain should correct his error and move on as Paul notes as it distracts from O's elephant problem on dissing the surge.

Mystery Metrics

May 30, 2008:  The U.S. is beginning its withdrawal from Iraq. U.S. troops strength is expected to decline from 170,000 to 140,000 by the end of the Summer. The reduction is made possible by the growing number of Iraqi army and police units that can do the job. U.S. military advisors have seen this coming for years, as they tracked dozens of different metrics (statistics on various aspects of Iraqi performance). The Iraqi armed forces and police had to be completely rebuilt. That's because the Saddam era army and police existed mainly to keep Saddam in power. Most of the leadership in that force was Sunni Arab, and the new Shia and Kurd dominated government did not trust these guys to serve a democratic Iraq.
These metrics are kept secret, as the enemy would love to have some
insight into the effectiveness of the security forces. But in the last year,
many Iraqi army and police units have revealed their capabilities through their
performance.

Morose

But the best news of all is the hammering the various Green and greenish
political parties of the Western world are going to be receiving at the polls,
very soon, as their reward for buying irretrievably into the “global warming”
hysteria.

The truck drivers are already blocking the roads in Europe,
consumers are showing their hands as voters, and every left-centre party that
plastered itself with the Green Label is racing to soak it off. For the
foreseeable future, electoral tolerance for politicians who propose to mount
more punitive taxes atop the soaring oil, will be hovering near zero.
Environmentalists ought to be celebrating high oil prices -- the market is doing
their work for them -- and yet they look so morose. That cheers me, too.


More From The Memory Hole

Saddam became a bit more responsive as the first U.S. soldiers began massing in the Persian Gulf in early 2003, but even after eight full weeks of inspections Hans Blix opened his status report before the U.N. on January 27, 2003 by saying:

Unlike South Africa, which decided on its own to eliminate its nuclear weapons and welcomed the inspection as a means of creating confidence in its disarmament, Iraq appears not to have come to a genuine acceptance, not even today, of the disarmament which was demanded of it and which it needs to carry out to win the confidence of the world and to live in peace.

At the point Bush made the decision to go to war in March 2003, Saddam had had more than four months worth of opportunities after the passage of Resolution 1441 (and another 12 years and 15 resolutions before that) to make a meaningful display of cooperation on the issue of WMD disarmament to the US and the UN. He never chose to do so.

and ends thus:

We now know one of the reasons Saddam never felt pressured to cooperate is because he had been running a multibillion dollar bribery scam through the U.N. itself. Support for sanctions was on the verge of crumbling. And everyone knew maintaining a huge U.S. military force on the Iraqi border to force continued inspections was untenable for any serious length of time.

In the end, the story of the run-up to the Iraq war is about intelligence, but not in the way most people think. Intelligence is always flawed and imprecise, even more so when you're dealing with a closed, paranoid and authoritarian regime like Hussein's. It's foolish to suggest Bush should have bucked consensus estimates on Iraq WMD built from more than a decade of intel, and it's even worse to suggest he lied for not doing so.

What President Bush did instead was put an end to the decade-long guessing game and place the burden squarely on Saddam Hussein by saying in front of the world: "This is what we think you have. It's now your responsibility to prove us wrong." In the aftermath of the worst terrorist attack in the history of America, it was absolutely the right thing to do.

Did I Forget To Mention Malaria?

It is well-established that the ancient Mayan, Aztec, Incan, and Toltec peoples offered human sacrifices, probably in the belief that such rituals would placate the gods who were in charge of nature; for instance, to help bring life-giving rains to their crops.

Although we shudder at the thought of such barbaric practices, I believe that we have unwittingly reinstituted human sacrifice in modern times. But while the list of justifications has grown immensely, our new rituals are still performed in the name of avoiding the wrath of the gods of nature.

Our environmental protection practices have already caused the deaths of millions of people, mainly in poor African countries. By far the most humans — mostly women and children — have been sacrificed in the mistaken belief that the use of any amount of the pesticide DDT would harm the environment. As a result, the preventable disease malaria has continued to decimate Africa.

On Malaria

clipped from reason.com

Copenhagen, May 27—Ranking proposed solutions to global warming, air pollution, disease control, and clean water were on the agenda today at the Copenhagen Consensus 2008 (CC08) conference. Leading public policy researchers proposed to a panel of experts, including five Nobel Prize-winning economics, what they would do with an "extra" $75 billion over five years to solve ten of the world's biggest challenges. The mantra of CC08 is "where in the world can we do the most good?"

According to their calculations, this third scenario does not "solve the climate problem" since it only lowers future warming from 3.5 degrees Celsius in 2100 to about 3 degrees Celsius. At the end of his presentation, Tol told the Youth Forum that if he had to choose whether to spend $100 on global warming or malaria, he'd spend it on malaria. If he could allocate between malaria and global warming, he'd spend $90 on malaria and $10 on energy research.

Today's Glimpse At The Memory Hole

clipped from www.tnr.com

In December, Al Qaeda's campaign of violence reached new depths in the eyes of many Muslims, with a plot to launch attacks in Saudi Arabia while millions were gathered for the Hajj. Saudi security services arrested 28 Al Qaeda militants in Mecca, Medina, and Riyadh, whose targets allegedly included religious leaders critical of Al Qaeda, among them the Saudi Grand Mufti Sheikh Abd Al Aziz Al Sheikh, who responded to the plot by ruling that Al Qaeda operatives should be punished by execution, crucifixion, or exile. Plotting such attacks during the Hajj could not have been more counterproductive to Al Qaeda's cause, says Abdullah Anas, who was making the pilgrimage to Mecca himself. "People over there ... were very angry. The feeling was, how was it possible for Muslims to do that? I still can't quite believe it myself. The mood was one of shock, real shock."

Thursday, May 29, 2008

A SERE-ing Experience

clipped from www.humanevents.com
S.E.R.E. training is not pleasant, but it is critical to properly prepare our most endangered combat forces for the reality of enemy capture. Was I “tortured” by the US military? No. Was I trained in an effort to protect my life and the lives of other American fighting men? Yes! Freedom is not Free, nor does it come without sacrifice. Every good American understands this basic principle of our country and prays for the young men and women who have sacrificed and are out on the front lines protecting us today.
Congress, you need to get the politics out of the war zone and focus on your job. Gaining information in non-lethal interrogations against non-uniformed terrorists is what is protecting our country today. If you had done your job the past twenty years perhaps one of my favorite wingmen in the F-14A would be alive today.

The Comrade Messiah. Seriously.

clipped from hotair.com

Wouldn’t you know it, not only is Obama surprised to find his friend of 20 years spouting the sort of rhetoric for which he’s famous in Chicago for spouting, but Pfleger himself sounds surprised. Amazing how much he and his circle of confidants managed to miss about their own behavior over the past few, er, decades.

Jeez, what kind of cloud does Obama live on? He thinks Afghanis speak Arabic, hasn’t had any hearings on Afghanistan while he’s the chair of the commitee, thinks a couple of Ag advisors can stop people in Afghanistan from growing poppies, doesn’t realize the church he’s belonged to for 20 years is racist and scary, doesn’t notice that the Reverends he’s listened to, even quoted, are racist demagogues, thinks there are 57 states, and thinks that most Americans like to eat arugula. What is up with this dude? Seriously.

That Nicorette gum must be fabulous stuff. Maybe I need to get me some...

Only The Credulous Are Baffled

The Bush administration is pressing U.N. inspectors to broaden their search for possible secret nuclear facilities in Syria, hinting that Damascus's nuclear program might be bigger than the single alleged reactor destroyed by Israeli warplanes last year.

Do not assume that Al Kibar exhausted our knowledge of Syrian efforts with regard to nuclear weapons," Hayden said. "I am very comfortable -- certainly with Al Kibar and what was there, and what the intent was. It was the highest confidence level. And nothing since the attack last September has changed our mind.

The absence of a clear fuel source for the reactor -- as well as a fuel-reprocessing facility for extracting plutonium -- has baffled experts who have studied the Syrian project. "It's like having a car but not enough gas to run it," said David Albright, a former U.N. nuclear inspector in Iraq and the president of the Institute for Science and International Security.

Stopped Clock Watch At The IAEA

clipped from hotair.com

Last year, the American intelligence community issued a national estimate that claimed with moderate confidence that the Iranians had ceased work on a nuclear bomb by 2003. The IAEA has documents which dispute that, and call into question the motives behind the creation of the NIE. Iranian documents dated in 2004 show design work being done on both a nuclear warhead and its delivery system, and the IAEA wants answers from Tehran:

A ranking International Atomic Energy Agency official called Tehran’s possession of a drawing showing how to make part of an atomic warhead ” alarming” Thursday and said the onus is on Iran to prove it had not tried to develop nuclear arms, said diplomats attending a closed briefing. …

While the IAEA demands answers from Iran, perhaps we could get a few from the American intelligence community. Why were they so intent on dismissing the threat from Iran that they reversed three years of high-confidence assessments of an ongoing nuclear-weapons program

Almost As If...

In the YouTube debate, the answer — the answer that Ygleisias rather persuasively argues defines the distinction between his view and Hillary — is clear: "I would."

Today the answer is, "he would reserve the right to choose which leaders he would meet, should he choose to meet with them at all."

It's almost as if one answer is designed to win votes in the primary, and another answer is designed to win votes in the general election...

Of course there is another alternative: He's a mental midget with A.D.D. Come to think about it, that's the description of pretty much any politician these days. Hard to name any exceptions actually.

And why we all need to seriously consider doing something radical this election. Voting "none of the above" would be one obvious choice. But I think we need to do better because this is no longer a joke. Our survival depends on making some changes that O -- and I'm afraid McCain only a little less so -- definitely does not have in mind.

Change You Can Send Down The Memory Hole

That was quick. Barack Obama has scrubbed Father Pfleger from his website now that a video has surfaced of Father Pfleger mocking Hillary Clinton. Google, however, has a cached version, and there he is:

This isn't change you can believe in. This is change you can delete from your website when a close mentor of yours embarrasses you.

Just Another Radioactive Day At O's Marxist Palace

Post below is video of Rev. Pfleger preaching at Obama's church. Pfleger argues that whites must give up their 401(k) money in order to have any hope of atoning for the sins of their ancestors. He also maintains that Hillary Clinton's unhappiness over losing out to Obama is specifically related to his race. In other words, Clinton would have been less distraught had, say, John Edwards bested her. In this account, of course, Clinton is a racist.

Here's the video, which I think needs to be seen to be believed:

Who needs nuclear war when you can have this as unremarkable fare? And "healing"...

Empire Of Unobtanium

clipped from chicagoboyz.net

In a multiple choice question, teenagers were asked why electric wires are made from copper. The four possible answers were that copper was brown, was not magnetic, conducted electricity, or that it conducted heat.

This question can of course be answered without knowing anything at all about either electricity or copper. Demonstration:

Why is unobtanium used to summon the Gostak?

1)Unobtainum is purple
2)Unobtanium is not magnetic
3)The Gostak has a strong affinity for unobtainum
4)Unobtanium is attractive to gnomes

It’s pretty clear that the desired answer is (3), even if you don’t know what unobtainium is or what (who?) the Gostak might be. The question on the U.K. “science test” might be a test of the ability to read and perform very simple logic; it has nothing to do with the measurement of scientific knowledge or the understanding of scientific methods.

Missing The Point

clipped from online.wsj.com


Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in an interview (audio only) with the San Francisco Chronicle, offers a curious explanation for recent American success in Iraq:

The purpose of the surge was to provide a secure space, a time for the political change to occur to accomplish the reconciliation. That didn't happen. Whatever the military success, and progress that may have been made, the surge didn't accomplish its goal. And some of the success of the surge is that the goodwill of the Iranians--they decided in Basra when the fighting would end, they negotiated that cessation of hostilities--the Iranians.

"This is an inexcusable slander," fumes Commentary's Abe Greenwald, who accuses Pelosi of "discounting the success of the American military, denying the accomplishments of U.S. allies, and giving the credit to our most dangerous enemies."

But doesn't this miss the point? Who needs Barack Obama if the Bush administration is generating so much Iranian goodwill?

How Exactly?

clipped from online.wsj.com
I really believe that she just always thought "This is mine" [laughter, hoots]. "I'm Bill's wife. I'm white. And this is mine. And I jus' gotta get up. And step into the plate." And then out of nowhere came, "Hey, I'm Barack Obama." And she said: "Oh, damn! Where did you come from!?!?!" [Crowd going nuts, Pfleger screaming]. "I'm white! I'm entitled! There's a black man stealing my show." [Sobs.] She wasn't the only one crying! There was a whole lotta white people cryin'!

It also renders doubtful one of the most frequent arguments for an Obama presidency: that he would diminish anti-American sentiment around the world through his conciliatory mien and tough diplomacy. His response to the political crisis over his spiritual advisers has been vacillatory, not conciliatory: first he stood by them, then he distanced himself from them. Now he pretends they don't exist--which differs from the putative Bush administration approach to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad & Co. how exactly?

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Lost (Islamic) "Founder"

clipped from pajamasmedia.com
Back in 1784, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson had to decide whether to appease or stand up to armed Middle Eastern pirates. Sound familiar?
Oddly though, in their rush to analogize by way of chivvying each other, neither candidate has actually pulled an example relevant to the region of the globe now under discussion.
the words of ‘Abd al-Rahman Adams were chilling enough to leave Adams and Jefferson in no doubt as to the sanguinary and messianic nature of their adversary.
was enough to get Jefferson to overlook his wariness of federalism and agree to a Constitution with a strong central government capable of building and keeping a powerful navy.
But the Philadelphia convention that drafted our national covenant in 1787 was hastened, and its welter of opinions unified, by the Barbary question. As the historian Thomas Bailey wrote, “In an indirect sense, the brutal Dey of Algiers was a Founding Father of the Constitution.”

The Book Store

What is the secular basis of Judaism?  Practical need, self-interest.  What is the worldly religion of the Jew?  Huckstering.  What is his worldly God?  Money.
Very well then!  Emancipation from huckstering and money, consequently from practical, real Judaism, would be the self-emancipation of our time."
  - Karl Marx; essay, The Jewish Question; 1844

Not having a theology degree, nor even a Ph.D., and being, too, a bit na├»ve regarding matters of high-brow philosophical currents throughout the ages, I have to admit that when I first read Karl Marx' essay, The Jewish Question, I was actually stunned by its contents. 
The thing that really got me to thinking, reading and searching for answers was the church bookstore.
I have visited perhaps 100 various Christian bookstores, both Protestant and Catholic.  In all of those places, one thing tied together the books for sale:  Christianity.

Not so in Obama's church bookstore.

Spotless

clipped from www.intellicast.com

While irradiance changes just 0.1% over the 11 year cycle, ultraviolet radiation changes 6 to 8% and shorter wavelengths even more. Ultraviolet radiation destroys ozone, an exothermic process which produces warming in the higher atmosphere in low to mid latitudes that works its way down to the middle troposphere in time. Labitzke (2001) has shown statistically significant differences of temperatures in the lower stratosphere into the middle troposphere with the 11 year solar cycle (warmest at max) which she attributes to solar flux induced ultraviolet variance. Shindell et al NASS GISS (1999) showed results from a global climate model including ozone and UV found UV induced stratospheric ozone changes and generated heat that penetrates into the troposphere, in effect confirming Labitzke’s findings.

 

Also an active sun causes a diffusion of cosmic rays, which have a low cloud enhancement effect through ion mediated nucleation. Low clouds reflect radiation and have a net cooling effect.

What Harm Can Possibly Come?

The following year brought the Cuban missile crisis, another sequel to Khrushchev's reading of Kennedy's weakness. Close as the Cuban missile crisis brought the two sides to war, however, it was perhaps not the most consequential effect of Khrushchev's reading of Kennedy's weakness. Persuaded that he needed further to demonstrate "fearlessness and backbone," in the words of William Manchester, Kennedy observed to Reston that the only place where the Communists were challenging the West in a shooting war was in Southeast Asia. Summarizing Kennedy's own evaluation of the aftermath of the Vienna conference in his 2003 biography of Kennedy, Robert Dallek writes that Kennedy "now needed to convince Khrushchev that he could not be pushed around, and the best place currently to make U.S. power credible seemed to be in Vietnam."

In short, the Vienna conference resolved no issue between the United States and the Soviet Union. On the contrary, if anything, it precipitated crises

RTWT

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

VDH In Europe

I have tried to visit various places in Europe each year since 9/11, and am currently leading a tour of battlefields here, ancient and modern, and things seem this season a tiny bit different. In a completely unscientific manner,after listening to various Europeans talk on politics, America, etc., a very funny thing impression seems to follow: while we are engaged in a campaign that may end up taking the country very much to the left in the sense of higher taxes, more government, and more foreign policy led by international consensus, the Europeans seem to be questioning the welfare state more than ever, and seem more pro-American than ever before.
In another completely unscientific observation, there are very few mothers with small children to be seen, very little new housing construction, and a lot of traffic jams, despite $9 a gallon gasoline.Europe still seems very much a society of the elderly and the thirty something single person.

O'Blarney (Part 94234)

Rand Simberg points out that Obama’s “Auschwitz” story is nothing new.


He was telling similar stories about his grandfather back in 2002, in his now-famous Iraq speech, which I’d never previously read:

My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton’s army. He saw the dead and dying across the fields of Europe; he heard the stories of fellow troops who first entered Auschwitz and Treblinka.

The first troops to enter those two camps (in Poland) were Soviet troops, so unless Patton was leading them, this can’t be true.

But Bad Now

It's been a bad day for the Dems' efforts to rewrite history. First Obama gets caught inventing American armed forces in Poland at the end of World War II, and then Zbigniew Brzezinski and William Odom give us this bit of puffery in the WaPo: "The United States would have a better chance of success (with Iran) if the White House abandoned its threats of military action and its calls for regime change."

It's a hoax. This White House ( I say with great regret) has NEVER called for regime change in Iran.

This nonsense gets published and debated, as if there were anything to debate. Meanwhile we might remind ourselves that Odom and Brezezinski served a president named Carter, who refused to sign a "no first use" promise with regard to nukes, with the Soviet Union. So it was fine to have it on the table then, but bad now.

For Better Or Worse

May 26,
2008:  In the last year, Iraq has bought
over $3 billion worth of U.S. weapons and military equipment. Those purchases
are increasing. According to Iraqi officers, many of whom served during the
1991 and 2003 operations, their former Russian equipment was clearly inadequate
compared to U.S. material.
The big orders will come when the Iraqis start looking for new tanks and
warplanes. The only two suppliers of new tanks are the U.S. and Russia, and the
Iraqis have had it with Russian stuff. The Europeans may snag some aircraft
sales with the adroit use of bribes (which European governments are more
tolerant of, and Iraqis very receptive to.) Tank and warplane sales could
amount to over a hundred billion dollars. Recent oil exploration activities in
Iraq, indicate new oil fields that could make Iraq's reserves larger than those
in Saudi Arabia (currently sitting the largest deposits of oil in the world.)
Iraq is thinking big, for better or worse.

Us As Well

clipped from pajamasmedia.com

I think that’s why Iranian society is careening into history’s septic tank, it is why the word most often used by sensitive Iranians to describe their country’s plight is “degradation.”  Persia is being gutted in order to fund the terror war against the West.  From the grim figures on the economy, to the mounting trafficking of Persian women to the brothels of the world, to the drug epidemic sabotaging the future of Iranian youth, to the torture cells reserved for anyone who speaks the truth, Persia is being destroyed.  All in the name of an evil ideology that drives a global war against civilization.

That war has been raging for nearly thirty years, and no Western government has yet found the will to engage in it.  The message Spengler delivers is that there is no way out of this war.  Left to their own devices, the mullahs will destroy Iran, and, if they can, us as well.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Gaffe Master

Barack Obama must be the most gaffe-prone politician in memory. Today, he delivered a Memorial Day speech in New Mexico. After greeting the local Democratic Party dignitaries, he began:

On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes -- and I see many of them in the audience here today -- our sense of patriotism is particularly strong.

Memorial Day honors those who have died in our nation's military service. Is it possible that Obama does not know this? Sometimes the things that come out of his mouth defy understanding.

What was really offensive about Obama's New Mexico appearance, however, was what followed his very brief, but generally appropriate, tribute to America's war dead. He continued with a town hall-style question and answer period that cast veterans in the only role with which the Democrats are comfortable--victims--and sought to politicize the holiday.

And if you visit the O website you'll find the gaffe has been sent down the memory hole. How predictable.