Monthly Archives: January 2007

Riffing on UN

Practically everything the U.N. is involved in is un-good, which fits an organization that so perfectly exemplifies the principles of newspeak in Brave New World. Third and fourth generation refugees anyone? Human Rights Commissions and Committees with Cuba, China, Libya, Saudi Arabia in positions of power? That’s why I like to pronounce it “Un” like the first syllable of undead, as in legions of undead vampires coming to suck the blood out of the suffering natives of the Congo.

So… along those lines, how about riffing on some less than awful (un-awful) adjectives for the Un?

Un goals are:

  • un-achievable
  • un-measurable
  • un-desirable

Un methods are:

  • un-practical
  • un-believable
  • un-moral

Un functionaries are:

  • un-truthful
  • un-ethical
  • un-trustworthy

Un troops are:

  • un-qualified
  • un-ready
  • un-reliable

Got another one? Another ‘un?

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Read a Citizen’s Report on Iraq

Read a Citizen’s Report on Iraq. Michelle Malkin has it. I have paraphrased a story from it to give you, dear reader, a taste.

Imagine if you will a checkpoint stop in Iraq. A vehicle drives erratically toward the checkpoint. U.S. soldiers fire warning shots. They shout. Adrenalin pumps through their bloodstreams. They wonder what new devilish trick approaches them to endanger their lives. They flash a light in the driver’s eyes. The vehicle stops just before they were going to fire the kill shots and the soldiers investigate. What they find is an Iraqi man strapped into the car so securely he cannot get out. He is crying as he nods at the passenger side floor. There, strapped in place and wrapped in enough explosives to destroy more than half their convoy, is the man’s six-year-old son. After they disarmed the bomb and freed the man and his son, the boy cried for hours as the Iraqi man thanked the U.S. soldiers for what they had done.

Read it all.

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Helmand: When you realize you dug yourself into a hole, put down the shovel and climb

NATO strategy in the Helmand province of Afghanistan has caused a fair amount of NATO bloodletting in the past year. Following American neglect of the province while securing Kandahar and Kabul, and in combination with a Taliban retrenchment across the border in Pakistan, the original policy of platoon houses (also known colloquially as hellholes) and the more recent policy of making truces with Taliban-affiliated locals have only resulted in more attacks on NATO forces in the province. While these attacks have been beneficial in that the attacks have all been repelled with hundreds of Taliban dead (The Telegraph says more than 1,000 Taliban dead and 17 Brits), they have damaged morale and killed more British soldiers than the smart set can stomach. On January 27, before Friday prayers, a humanitarian NGO that has set up offices in Helmand was hit by a suicide bomber. When the British venture out of their hellholes and bases they destroy the Taliban enemy, but they don’t have enough manpower to hold the land they take. NATO is surging into Helmand with 3,200 American and 1,000 Polish reinforcements and a new commander for NATO in the region. U.S. General Dan K. McNeil will replace U.K. General David Richards.

What must be done?

Luckily for our questions, the Telegraph found the most pessimistic local they could and got a quote out of him that hits every note:

But Amir Mohammed, 65, a farmer, said: “We have had nothing but fighting since the British came. A lot of people have been killed by them. The Taliban are back all over Helmand. They are in Musa Qala, Nawzad, Sangin and Garamsir. There is no security. At least there was security under the Taliban. Also they are now talking about destroying our poppy fields. How will we eat?” (source)

Let’s go over these points and see how to address them.

  • Problem: Lots of fighting and killing in Helmand. Solution: Communicate with the people. They approve of the killing of violent people who would attack them without warning. Don’t be the one who kills without warning. Be the talkative protector.
  • Problem: There is no security for people to go to the market or pray at the mosque. Solution: Establish security for people to do their everyday tasks. Protect them first. Help them protect themselves however you can.
  • Problem: The Brits killed lots of people. Solution: Tell people what you’re doing constantly, and brag about it when you kill a bunch of brigands and bandits who are out to kill villagers and destroy their village.
  • Problem: The Taliban are back all over Helmand. Solution: Kill them.
  • Problem: Taliban in Musa Qala. Solution: Find them and drive them out of Musa Qala, killing as many as possible in Musa Qala and with ambushes along the escape routes.
  • Problem: Taliban in Nawzad. Solution: See Musa Qala.
  • Problem: Taliban in Sangin. Solution: See Musa Qala.
  • Problem: Taliban in Garamsir. Solution: See Musa Qala.
  • Problem: We are growing poppy to make money (and selling it to the Taliban). How can we survive without the Taliban to buy our poppy? Solution: Isn’t there a shortage of medical opiates in Europe and America? Convince legitimate pharmaceutical companies to contract to buy all the poppy grown in the province, thereby stealing the Taliban’s funding out from under them.

Is this roughly what will happen? No doubt with the exception of the last bullet it is pretty close to plan.

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World’s longest beach hidden in Bangladesh

Though one of the world’s most spectacular beaches is here, the tyrrany of the Jamaat-e-Islami now prevents the locals from enjoying the beach, and it also keeps vacationing sunbathers away.

Cox’s Bazar owes its origins to the subcontinent’s British colonial rulers, who sent Capt. Hiram Cox to settle Buddhist immigrants from nearby Burma into the area in the late 1790s.

The 120 km (75 mile) unbroken stretch of beach here is the world’s longest, and a chain of hills that run parallel to the sea for almost the entire length, towering cliffs, colorful, ancient pagodas and Hindu temples, make it a natural attraction. (source)

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Foreign Terrorists in Pakistan?!

The Times of India reports:

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf on Tuesday said authorities were investigating the possibility of involvement of foreign elements in the recent spate of terrorist attacks in the country.

“We are trying to find out who is behind these attacks and the causes. We are trying to find out if foreign hands are behind these attacks,” he told reporters before leaving on a two-day visit to Indonesia and Malaysia. (source)

Conspiracy theories like this one are everywhere in the Muslim world. Where would the hypothetical infiltrators be coming from? Afghanistan maybe? Iran? Certainly not India: all the terrorist infiltration across that line attacks in the other direction.

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Divorce, Pakistani Style

In 2002, an amendment to the Pakistani 1964 Civil and Family Court Act reduced the mandatory reconciliation period for divorces requested by women to three months. Now, almost 50% of civil cases in Rawalpindi district are related to women seeking divorce.

Advocate Nasreen Akhtar, who specialises in family cases, says the amended law has made it easy for women to obtain divorce.

“It has made their life safer and more secure. Now women are more confident and their spouses more careful in their married life,” she remarks. She, nonetheless, stressed that women sought help from courts only after exhausting all means of reconciliation.

Iftikharun Nisa Hassan, director of the Women’s Research and Resource Centre, Fatima Jinnah Women’s University, sees the rise in divorce cases as the “awakening of women”.

“Today women are getting educated and securing jobs and are less inclined to put up with inhuman treatment by their husbands. They are financially viable and seek second marriages for a comfortable life,” she says. (source)

Muslim men can divorce their wives by saying “I divorce you” three times. The amendment is a step towards fairness that will provide some civilizing influence on Pakistan, and is already having beneficial effects.

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Turkish Al Qaeda Leader Arrested

Not much more is known. (source)

Update: The NYT has more.

TRABZON, Turkey, Jan. 29 — In simultaneous operations carried out in five Turkish cities on Monday, the police arrested 47 people suspected of being Islamic militants, including the leader of Al Qaeda in Turkey […]

Among those taken into custody on Monday was Ekrem K, identified as the suspected leader locally of Al Qaeda. Ekrem K, who the police said went by the name Usame, was captured in Konya, 150 miles south of Ankara, along with 22 other suspects. (source)

Persian Dawn

From a seat on the banks of the Euphrates the sun rises over Iran. Iran, the land that was once Persia, the country with the name that is linguistically identical to “Aryan” as in the Aryan ideal of Hitler’s National Socialist Party. Yes, they are a country of mystics, scholars and tyrants who spawned Darius and Alexander, Zoroaster and the Three Magi of Christ’s Nativity. The Iranian followers of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, who was one of the founding fathers of modern Jihad terrorism (the other main ones being Sayyid Qutb and Mohammed Amin al-Husayni), declared war on the United States in 1979 by invading the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.

There is a caricature of Democratic politicians whose ultimate response to every national security threat is not to go to war, but to send in stealthy, black, silent (!) helicopters and have teams of black-clad ninjas rappel down and slay all the enemy then pop back into the helicopters and be back in the U.S. in time to watch Jeopardy.

Jimmy Carter was the first president to give the black-clad-ninja theory a try in the real world. He weakly acquiesced to the Iranian act of attacking the Embassy, fuming privately over the insult to American dignity and too late launched Operation Eagle Claw a poorly conceived, futile, aborted attempt to rescue the hostages that caused the deaths of eight U.S. soldiers.

In these days when Iran’s dangerous neighboring countries have been neutralized by U.S. troops, thus freeing the Iranian Mullahs to engage in all sorts of wickedness via their proxies in Hezbollah and the Iraqi Shi’ite militias, the specter of nuclear weapons in the hands of Ahmadinajad is worth considering. The two main questions that are worth asking are “will he get nuclear weapons,” and “would he use them?”

Pakistan, which shares a border with Iran and has served as a sponsor to Iran’s nuclear weapons program, has working nuclear weapons. Healthy paranoia indicates that whether Iran has actually developed their own nuke or not, they could very well have some in storage. North Korea and Iran have been developing nukes in covert labs for about the same amount of time, both using Pakistani and Chinese designs, and North Korea has developed and tested several suitcase sized nukes. The chances are high that Iran has nukes or will have them soon.

As to whether Ahmadinajad would use nukes, we already have his testimony that he wants to wipe out Israel, and that Israel could be destroyed by several nukes while being unable to inflict correspondingly total destruction on Iran. But stranger than his threats are his beliefs.

Bernard Lewis, the great Princetonian scholar of Islam, says it best.

Outdated Cold war concepts, such as mutually assured destruction (M.A.D) are irrelevant when it comes to Iran , because the Iranian president and his circle see such a scenario “as an incentive, not a deterrent,” renowned scholar Bernard Lewis said during a lecture Monday evening at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. (source)

And yet, with this clearly unhinged holocaust denier in charge of Iran, Europe resists U.S. demands that they fulfill their responsibility to sanction Iran for its refusal to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

In December, Iran’s refusal to give up its nuclear program led the United Nations Security Council to impose economic sanctions. Iran’s rebuff is based on its contention that its nuclear program is civilian in nature, while the United States and other countries believe Iran plans to make weapons.

At issue now is how the resolution is to be carried out, with Europeans resisting American appeals for quick action, citing technical and political problems related to the heavy European economic ties to Iran and its oil industry. (source)

Even Saudi Arabia has warned Iran.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia warned that Iran is not only interfering in Iraqi affairs, but is attempting to spread Shiite Islam in the majority-Sunni Middle East.

The Saudi king told a Kuwaiti newspaper that he warned an Iranian envoy that Iran’s actions were endangering the Gulf. (source)

And how is this all playing out in the anti-American U.S. media?

The usual idiocy: It’s all Bush’s fault.

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Al Jazeera’s Paean to the Peaceniks

Hanoi Jane still thinks she is relevant. She still thinks that the U.S. President, a Republican this time unlike the Democratic John Fitzgerald Kennedy who was responsible for Vietnam, is wrong for involving the U.S. in a war halfway around the world. She’s not a deep thinker. Never was.

But who cares? Al Jazeera loves her! Here’s the lede.

Chanting “peace, salaam, shalom,” and carrying banners reading “Congress Inaction is Immoral” and “The Surge is a Lie,” “bring our troops home,” tens of thousands of American anti-war protesters gathered in front of the U.S. Capitol yesterday to hear many anti-war activists who included Jane Fonda, among other actress and actresses, war Veterans, military families, lawmakers, and a 12-year-old Massachusetts girl who called on the U.S. government to end the country’s military involvement in Iraq.

Follow the link to read all about the 12-year-old girl’s thoughts explaining how Al Gore’s movie led her to believe she should go to this anti-war protest along with communist Hollywood moguls Tim Robbins, Susan Sarandon, Sean Penn, and Hanoi Jane. I wouldn’t want to leave out Jesse Jackson, who has fallen a long way from being a protege of Martin Luther King to two-bit racism-hustler. This twelve-year old is no Einstein.

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Guantanamo Zak

A fascinating article about the Muslim cultural advisor at Guantanamo from AP.

“I have to use my experience and my commonsense. I don’t want to put myself in any situation that will jeopardize my life,” the 49-year adviser told The Associated Press in a rare interview in a conference room just outside the detention center’s razor wire-topped fences.

Zak recounted how on a recent night, he had retired to his quarters when he learned that four prisoners wanted to see him right away inside the prison. Zak, the only Muslim cultural affairs adviser at Guantanamo Bay, quickly returned to work, but after talking to guards, decided against the meeting.

He suspected the men were planning to attack him – most likely with a “cocktail” of bodily fluids.

“Sometimes, I see into their games,” said Zak, a lean man with salt-and-pepper hair, as he slowly shook his head as if talking about unruly children. (source)

Read it all.