Archive for December, 2006

Hussein executed

Saturday, December 30th, 2006

I have been slowly rethinking my position on Capital Punishment thanks to my bride. It’s hard to get into because I’m still going back and forth in my own head. One thing I don’t think I’ll sway to much on however is the necessity of removing human trash from our planet. Several names jump to mind quickly; Hitler, Bin Laden, Zaraqawi, and yes Saddam Hussein.

The MSNBC report includes the quote of the year I believe:

NBC could hear cheers and celebrations in the background while talking to an official in the prime minister’s office.

“This son of a bitch is lying under my feet.… I can’t talk now because of all the cheers!” a witness said.

Heh.

The New York Times has posted their Obit for Saddam, no doubt written a while back. They include a pic spread. They lead off the spread with this one:

How quaint. A viscious barbarian “enjoying” his ahem-forcedunderpainoftortureandrapeoftheirchildren-ahem adoring public. No no…I prefer to remember him as I remember his sons (graphic picture below the fold).

(more…)

Merry Christmas to All

Monday, December 25th, 2006

This is the day the Lord has made.  Let us be glad and REJOICE in it! Psalm 118:24
Our Savior is born!  Hope has visited us.  Lived among us.  Shared our trials.  Witnessed our sins and promptly(if 33 years can be considered promptly) died for them.  Three days later He defeated death, walked out of His tomb, and showed us all He was serious about His Promise.  BELIEVE IN HIM AND HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE!

Luke 1:26-38

26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. 29 And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. 30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. 31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. 32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: 33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. 34 Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? 35 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. 36 And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. 37 For with God nothing shall be impossible. 38 And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.

Hoping and praying that everyone has a safe and Merry Christmas.

Watching for Santa

Saturday, December 23rd, 2006

It’s Open Season

Tuesday, December 19th, 2006

Reflecting back to an earlier post where I tried to define my use of the term Barbarian, I realize now that the effort was useless.  I’m trying to defend a term that should be clear to any objective observer such as Rich Ward of Stuck Mojo.

Uncle Jimbo at Blackfive turned me on to this video and it explains far better than my attempts the enemy we face and why I have no trouble with dumping them all into the same slim bucket.

Lyrics are here for those who can’t make them out.  Use headphones if naughty words will offend folks.

The chorus of the tune sums it up quite well:

My forefathers fought and died for this here
I’m stronger than your war of fear
Are we clear?
If you step in my hood
It’s understood
It’s open season

ISG Report

Thursday, December 7th, 2006

***UPDATE*** I’m changing the link to point to TLB’s HTML version. One thing TLB found while creating the HTML version of the report was the keywords included in the original PDF. Quite interesting:

As most folks are aware by now, I’ve posted a HTML version of the Iraq Study Group Report here. Why? Because a monolithic PDF document is rather unwieldy, and makes it difficult for bloggers to comment on particular sections of the document and refer their readers to that exact section.

So there you go. But in creating the HTML version, I also spent some time with the PDF file published by the ISG itself. And I found something interesting — if depressing — buried inside the file.

Adobe’s PDF format allows the author of a document to save keywords in the Properties of the file. These should be words that capture the sense of the document, and words that people might use to search for the document.

So here are the keywords defined by the Iraq Study Group for their report:

iraq study group report james baker lee hamilton co chairs middle east congress bipartisan strategies president bush america abroad military withdrawal troops civil war iraqi government sunni shia kurds christian sectarian violence conflict post-conflict

Yes, that’s right. If you’re looking for “withdrawal”, this is the document for you. If you happen to be looking for “victory”, however — you are out of luck.

I haven’t read the entire report as yet(no…not even Slate’s version of it)…I have it but haven’t finished reading it. From the snippets I’ve heard about I can say that I’m not at all surprised in general…with a slight bit of concern that Larry Eagleburger would be in agreement on the matter.

One thing does concern me, and that I have both heard about(Right Wing Radio is going nuts on this) and have read in the report is the suggestion that we bring Syria and Iran to the table to help “build Iraq”.

The Executive Summary of the report says:

Given the ability of Iran and Syria to influence events
within Iraq and their interest in avoiding chaos in Iraq, the
United States should try to engage them constructively. In
seeking to influence the behavior of both countries, the United
States has disincentives and incentives available. Iran should
stem the flow of arms and training to Iraq, respect Iraq’s sovereignty
and territorial integrity, and use its influence over Iraqi
Shia groups to encourage national reconciliation. The issue of
Iran’s nuclear programs should continue to be dealt with by the
five permanent members of the United Nations Security
Council plus Germany. Syria should control its border with
Iraq to stem the flow of funding, insurgents, and terrorists in
and out of Iraq.

“their interest in avoiding chaos in Iraq”???? HUH? Did I REALLY READ THAT? Yep…there it is in black and white…wow…MUST BE a clerical error. Typo…something. A buddy of mine brought back (and committed a SERIOUS crime in the process) syrian military IDs from Iraq. Anbar Province well into the interior of the country. I don’t think these guys were delivering humanitarian supplies.

“engage them constructively”? To what end exactly? They are already “engaged constructively” by building the world’s largest guerrilla movement! These guys have obviously not heard the President’s September 13th speech(I think it was the 13th) where he laid out the new rules for the American Diplomacy which is, put simply, Choose terrorism or not and act accordingly.

Recommendation 9 of the ISG:

RECOMMENDATION 9: Under the aegis of the New Diplomatic
Offensive and the Support Group, the United States
should engage directly with Iran and Syria in order to try to
obtain their commitment to constructive policies toward Iraq
and other regional issues. In engaging Syria and Iran, the
United States should consider incentives, as well as disincentives,
in seeking constructive results.

I love the “commitment to constructive policies” bit. Syria and Iran HAVE a commitment to constructive policies in Iraq…they are seriously committed to their own “constructive policies” which includes keeping ANY democratic government on it’s heels. Until a Syrian puppet government is installed Aasad will not be happy.

So…just from the bit I have read I have to agree with Mr. Fernandez of Belmont Club and PJM fame.

In sum, the ISG makes an attempt to reduce tensions in Iraq by engaging the parties responsible for the problem, but not in a way that obviously reduces their incentives to compete. The study reiterates the need for a stable and defensible Iraq while inviting regional “involvement” and undertaking to move American strength elsewhere. The effort might succeed, though it is not obvious why anyone should expect it to.

Why I call them Barbarians

Friday, December 1st, 2006

Before the November elections I was fed up with all the rhetoric flying around whether that was on the legacy media or the blogs. Certainly I was fed up with what the elected folks in DC were saying. I’d had it. Stopped posting here and had almost slipped into a worst case mentality…buy up the all the ammo you can and just wait. I chuckled at myself but all the rhetoric was just numbing me to everything.

Then the elections came and I realized that alot of people had become numb to th e constant stream of vitriol from both sides. Those quiet folks out there either sat out the election or voted for change of any flavor. Kick the bums out and let a new crop of bums give it a turn. Well…I’m no fan of the new bums either. Whittle’s note prodded me back to the keyboard and into the public forum of the debate. I did set out some ground rules for myself as a small concession to the winners of the elections. They are:

1) All the labels I have slapped on Americans over the past few years are hereby revoked. Senator Durbin is once again Senator Durbin in my book. The NY Times is once again the NY Times. Etc. Etc. Etc.(this does NOT apply to non-Americans…the French are still weasels and the barbarians are still barbarians)

2) Clean slate is the order of the day…Grace is a wonderful thing…whatever is in the past is in the past…whatever wrongs I feel may have been done (whether I was right or wrong) are forgotten. Gonna give everyone a clean shot again

3) …this is the hard one and it’s a hat tip to some friends…with my various news readings I will endeavor to read the moderate and left leaning blogs as well. I gave up on them about 2 years ago along with the NY Times.

I was immediately met with the following from a friend:

If I had decided not to be naturalized as a US citizen, would I be a barbarian because of the fact that my family comes from a heavily-Muslim part of the Philippines and I’m brown? If you feel comfortable saying these things outside of keyboard blustering–straight up, to my face, to my family’s face, to my husband’s face–then at least you’ve got real brass ones. If not, then leave such derogatory remarks out of it. It neither elevates my opinion of you or of our intelligence. (Just my $0.02.)

So…I had define my usage of the term barbarian. I knew my friend here was stretching my meaning significantly. My shot at the French was just that…a shot. I’m an American. We’re PAID to take shots at the French! My friend’s thoughts on my use of the term barbarian is another thing altogether. My definition is as follows:

Claiming as an article of faith the destruction of another country. Claiming killing of innocents as a proper method of achieving the destruction of another country. Claiming as your ultimate goal the take over of a continent(dare I say the world) and forcing the population to your ideas or be killed. I don’t think the Philippine people in general fall into any of those ideas.

I don’t think the average Iraqi or the average Muslim agrees with any of the above yet I am continually charged with whitewashing an entire race of people. Is there ANYTHING in the above that points to a particular race claiming they agree with the statements? No. In fact I go out of my way to exclude the Philippine People from the statements. I have nothing against Muslims in general…only those who would as soon cut my head off than look at me. That situation is sure to place me against ANYONE regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, or hair style.

Moving on alittle bit, in response to my post yesterday I get this from another member of our “Soggy Bottom Brain Trust”:

Whoa! Just finished reading this after my last reply. So I see you’ve come around to the “kill ’em all, it’s the only way to be sure” train of thought.

Um…no…that’s not at all what I said. My friend here went on to say that the US was perpetrating the killing of innocents which makes us just as bad as the barbarians(in his defense, we agree this is a semantic struggle…he fully understands that we are fighting barbarians…no idea what he thinks barbarians are but we’ll get to that…). I drag out my old friend Webster’s Dictionary:

Main Entry: per·pe·trate
Pronunciation: 'p&r-p&-"trAt
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Form(s): -trat·ed; -trat·ing
Etymology: Latin perpetratus, past participle of perpetrare, from per- through + patrare to accomplish, from pater father — more at FATHER
1 : to bring about or carry out (as a crime or deception) : COMMIT
2 : to produce, perform, or execute (something likened to a crime) perpetrate a pun>

So no…we, the US, are NOT perpetrating the killing of innocents. These deaths are incidental to our killing of the barbarians. We will mourn the loss of the innocents and give them better treatment than many people in America would get at our best hospitals. Webster’s says about “incidental”:

Webster sez:
1 : in an incidental manner : not intentionally
of some of his statements is incidentally hilarious — John Lahr>
2 : by way of interjection or digression : by the way
having a good teacher…–still living, incidentally — John Fischer>

Meanwhile…the barbarians blow an Iraqi Police post…they kill what they consider to be the badguys and blowup another group of children. They, the barbarians, celebrate the deaths of the kids claiming it furthers their cause.

That is a very distinct difference in what we do versus them. But, since we are already looking in Websters, let’s right to the nut of the matter. Websters says this about barbarian:

Etymology: Latin barbarus — more at BARBAROUS
1 : of or relating to a land, culture, or people alien and usually believed to be inferior to another land, culture, or people
2 : lacking refinement, learning, or artistic or literary culture

so…first we have the etymology pointing to Barbarous…more on that in a second…second we have “people alien and usually believed to be inferior to another land, culture, or people”. Yep, I believe these
PEOPLE to be ALIEN to the regularly Iraqi and INFERIOR to the regular Iraqis…now let’s look at Barbarous

Etymology: Latin barbarus, from Greek barbaros foreign, ignorant
1 a : UNCIVILIZED b : lacking culture or refinement : PHILISTINE
2 : characterized by the occurrence of barbarisms < barbarous language>
3 : mercilessly harsh or cruel < barbarous crimes>
synonym see FIERCE

Here we have UNCIVILIZED. Is it not out of line to say that Civilized behavior does not include driving truck bombs into markets? The second definition fits(Nick Berg comes to mind…Daniel Pearle as well ***GRAPHIC VIDEOS***). The third definition certainly fits and there is no doubt about the synonym.

My friends seem to be stuck on a perception that I am labelling based on a faith or race and I simply am not. I’m labelling based on behavior…you know…the whole “content of their character” bit.

yep…I think the BEHAVIOR of the individuals committing the acts making the news in Iraq meets with this definition. Therefore they are Barbarians. Individuals folks…not all Sunnis in Iraq. Not all Shiites in Iraq. Not all $Diety_Followers_by_name in Iraq. Not all $Race_of_choice in Iraq.

Will they argue that these individuals are “civilized”? Are not “mercilessly harsh or cruel”?

Go here for examples barbarians and examples of Muslims…see if you can spot them.