The Logic Lifeline

A logical approach to sorting out world events. Where logic, opinion and speculation are combined to produce a reasoned, but entertaining reading experience. The unofficial hometown conservative blog of Woodridge, Il

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Ironic Last Words

In the new video shot with a cellphone it shows some interchange between Saddam and the observers. According to ABC Blog Bizarre Bazaar some in the crowd were taunting him with the name of the guy who should next be at the end of a rope: al Sadr. So Saddam is standing there with a rope around his neck with ticket to hell in his hand and what words does he choose to shoot back. He tells the taunters to "Go to hell". Quite ironic. Where he is now at, I am sure those words are taunting him.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Hugo Chavez Should Look to Saddam Hussein as a Warning

When I criticized Hugo Chavez on a blog once, I was asked why I disliked him so much. I had to retreat from my assault because I had no examples of such high crimes as Saddam Hussein. I also realized that many around the world do not have the ability to recognize a thug before it is obvious. To me it is already obvious that Hugo Chavez is a thug moving in a direction toward tyranical dictatorship.

Such people at this stage begin with solidifying their power base. Once the power base is secured to a strong enough degree, there is no stopping them in whatever they want to do within their own country. Any citizen who has something the dictator wants must yield it or die: a beautiful wife or daughter, valuable land, a successful business. To maintain the power base and guard against overthrow or assasination thousands must then die. They may be innocent, but their deaths will serve as an example to others who might think of such things.

Chavez has taken another step in solidifying his power base. Captains Quarters Blog is posting about Chavez shutting down a broadcast station he views as hostile to his regime. Chavez is denying freedom of speech and freedom of the press to Radio Caracas TV. This station 's actions that have garnered such loss of freedom:

- Support of the coup that briefly removed Chavez from power
- Support of a 2003 protest strike against Chavez
- Support of the opposition in the election against Chavez

Captain Ed also provided a good link to a Reporters Without Borders 2006 report listing several other attacks by Chavez against a free press. The writing on the wall is clear. The direction that Chavez is going is undeniable. However there are those who look at the social programs of Chavez, the cheap heating oil gestures to the poor in the U.S., the cheap shots against the U.S. calling Bush the Devil. Some think that loss of freedom of speech is worth it. Some think loss of a free press is OK. They think that the move toward tyrannical dictatorship is something to yawn over. They, however, will not be there to suffer when the murdering and torture begins. They will safely be in their country that enjoys freedom from such "inconveniences".

The world body yawns and shrugs against the same loss of liberty in other parts of the world: the middle east, Russia, China, North Korea. They only awake from their stupor to laugh when a "leader" from these regions attempts to shove a stick into the eye of America. They are only angered when such thugs are challenged by the U.S. It is these liberals who claim to care about people and yet let thousands fall under these threatening dictators. It is liberals who claim to care about freedom of speech and the press, yet look away when their hero takes away such freedom.

Hugo Chavez will go the way of Saddam Hussein. He may not commit atrocities to the level of Saddam; but if his direction is not successfully challenged, he will have much blood on his hands before he dies. Justice has come to Saddam. Chavez should look and fear, because it may come to him one day if he pursues this path.

Justice Served - Equation Balanced

With Saddam's passing I feel no surge of desire to engage in blood-thirsty fist pumping. Here is a soul that has committed atrocious crimes that has been sent back to his Maker for final justice. I wrote a few days ago about the scales of justice and the equation that cries out to be balanced in such crimes. My support of the death penalty is not about revenge or lust for blood. It is simply that until the death of the murderer, there is such a glaring imbalance: the victim(s) lie in the grave, the families of the victims suffer each day from the memory and the guilty one lives on.

In Saddam's case especially, he retained celebrity status even though he had lost all else. The media continued to fawn over Saddam. They bolstered his persona when he publickly rebelled against America and the new Iraq. Given his position these were really the acts of a clown, but the media was happy to mold it into something bigger. His continued existence fueled those like him. His life was a force of encouragement for those who supported his bloody ways.

Saddam had many victims. One life in exchange may not seem to balance the scales. However, considering the beginning of a long payment for crimes we look to his Maker to balance the equation. There is a strange reaction by some when a murderer dies before their trial. In this case Saddam was tried for only a fraction of his crimes and there are those who feel cheated. What poppycock! Saddam will be tried in the ultimate court before the ultimate Judge.

Now it is time for those in the Arab world to stand up and use this event for good. Unfortunately, many will not. Hatred and murder are the highest currency of the Arab world. Though Saddam caused the death of many innocents, there will be those who hold up his photograph as a symbol to rally around.

Finally, there are those saying that Iraq would have been better off keeping Saddam in power than what is happening now. Such thoughts can only come from those who are insane; or their thinking warped beyond repair. It is true that during Saddam's reign the Sunni's, Shias and Kurds sectarian violence was contained. At what cost and with what methods? By a very heavy hand and the frequent murder of any who was perceived to be an enemy of the state. By raping of wives in view of their husband. By torture. The world is either very forgetful of or very forgiving of Saddam to say that Iraq was better under his fist.

Goodbye Saddam. You will not be missed. Whether or not it is admitted, your death today is a sign of hope of a brighter future in Iraq.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

John Edwards' Snowball's Chance

When John Edwards announced his bid for the presidency in 2008, my first response was laughter. Within 2 weeks of Kerry naming Edwards as his running mate, Edwards revealed himself as an empty suit. Since Kerry's loss, Edwards has had a low profile. Two media darlings have all but declared their intent for 2008. Edwards' declaration seems at first glance as small as Chris "bread slice" Dodd, Joe Biden or Dennis Kucinich.

In the midst of my laughter, I saw something that caused me to pause. I have lost the link to the story, but it mentioned that Edwards has been making quite a few trips to Iowa in the last two years. In fact Edwards in a recent poll is tied at the top with Obama in Iowa. Here may be Edwards' snowball's chance at the nomination. A strong showing in Iowa, especially a win, would put Edwards in the spotlight through Super Tuesday. Edwards has a high chance, perhaps the best, in the South. Super Tuesday could clinch it for him. It is a long shot, but I am beginning to think it is possible.

An Edwards win would interest me on two fronts. It would be so much fun to see neither of the media darlings survive the nomination process. Also, I think Edwards would be revealed in the general election as the lightweight that he is. So here we are talking about 2008 when the winners of 2006 have not even been sworn in yet. I guess we are doomed for endless election cycles with little or no respite between.

The World of Mike Nifong About to Crumble

While the rest of the world looks forward to 2007, I cannot imagine Mike Nifong is opening his arms to ring in the new year. After it was determined that Nifong deliberately withheld DNA evidence from the defense and victim suddenly could not remember if she was actually penetrated; the rape charge was dropped against the 3 Duke players. In a move that shows clearly this is all about Mike Nifong, charges of kidnapping and sexual offense remained. Of course, these charges are solely based on the word of the accuser who has been thoroughly discredited. The right thing to do would have been to drop all charges and apologize. Instead Nifong is going to drop the charges piece-meal in an attempt to cushion the backlash against him.

In addition to his severe mishandling of the case, illegally withholding evidence and slow return to justice; Nifong is now facing ethics charges by the North Carolina Bar. According to AP:

The North Carolina bar filed ethics charges Thursday against the prosecutor in the Duke lacrosse sexual assault case, accusing him of saying misleading and inflammatory things to the media about the athletes under suspicion.

The punishment for ethics violations can range from admonishment to disbarment. The complaint could also force District Attorney Mike Nifong off the case by creating a conflict of interest.

The story also gives a short list of examples cited in the charges:

- Nifong referred to the lacrosse players as "a bunch of hooligans."

- He declared: "I am convinced there was a rape, yes, sir."

- He told ESPN: "One would wonder why one needs an attorney if one was not charged and had not done anything wrong."

- He told The New York Times: "I'm disappointed that no one has been enough of a man to come forward. And if they would have spoken up at the time, this may never have happened.

Also, Nifong was dishonest when tests failed to reveal DNA from the players by suggesting they used condoms. Nifong knew, however, that the accuser claimed they did not use condoms. Nifong's reckless behavior was tailored to exact maximum damage on the reputations of the players while helping his re-election bid. After committing to this path, Nifong failed to make it right when the case began to unravel. The ethics charges should be the tip of the iceberg of consequences to fall on Nifong's head. 2007 will not be a fun year for him.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Yet Another Terrorist Threat Against Civilians Who Have Nothing to Do With Israel

The events in Somalia recently have been interesting. The Somalian government joined by the Ethiopians have had some measure of success in forcing Islamic fighters to retreat. I am not familiar enough to comment in detail on the situation. The thing that jumped out at me is a comment at the end of a Washington Times article on the subject (emphasis mine):
Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, whose military openly joined the war Sunday after weeks of quietly aiding the Somali government, said his forces had completed about half their mission.
"As soon as we have accomplished our mission -- and about half of our mission is done, and the rest shouldn't take long -- we'll be out," Mr. Meles told reporters in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.
He also claimed Islamist militiamen had suffered heavy casualties, citing internal reports from Ethiopia's military.
"I hear reports of close to 3,000 injured in Mogadishu's hospitals ... and well over 1,000 might have died," Mr. Meles said.
Both sides have claimed to have killed hundreds of their enemy, but independent observers have not been given access to the battlefields to check on the reports.
Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed, leader of the Council of Islamic Courts' executive body, said the group had told its troops to withdraw from some areas.
"The war is entering a new phase," he said. "We will fight Ethiopia for a long, long time and we expect the war to go everyplace."
Sheik Ahmed declined to explain his comments in greater detail, but some Islamist leaders had threatened a guerrilla war to include suicide bombings in Ethiopia's capital.

First, we had the suicide bombings in Israel. These were highly criticized and in my opinion dealt a public relations body blow to the Palestinian cause. Suicide bombers were (and continue to be) glorified and their families provided with sums of money after the deed. Even Saddam Hussein was paying out to these families. We saw references in blogs and news reports that seemed quite sympathetic to these bombers. When challenged about these sentiments, they denied supporting the suicide bombers but understood them. These were people oppressed by Israel. They were desperate and had no other options but to take such drastic measures.

When the U.S. invaded Iraq we saw another wave of terror against civilians. Roadside bombs, car bombs, suicide bombs. Then the excuse was that Iraq was under "occupation". Again, no support for these drastic measures but they understood them.

Now in the Somalia conflict when the going gets a little tough for a group of Islamic radicals who want to impose their law by force on a legitimately recognized government the answer is--suicide bombings. This has nothing to do with Israel. Nothing to do with "American Imperialism".

Islamic radicals continue to make targeting civilians their weapon of choice to bend the world to their will. I have written on this topic many times. I have predicted that soon the excuse of the day for a civilian attack will become as trivial as not liking the look on somebody's face. Civilian targeting is the most dangerous thing threatening civilization at this time, yet the world yawns and sleeps or misplaces their concern in other areas. If the world body does not wake up, suicide bombing will come to the hometowns of many.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Saddam Could Meet Justice Soon

Saddam lost his appeal to reverse his death sentence in the Iraqi Supreme Court of Appeals. There are many on both sides of the political spectrum who oppose the death penalty. I favor the death penalty for one main reason: justice is not satisfied while murderous monsters are allowed to enjoy life; even if they are deprived of freedom. Justice is often pictured as a set of balanced scales. Justice is like a mathematical equation demanding to be balanced. Consider those innocent of crime who have no home or meals provided for them. They have no voice to be heard. Compare that to the murderer who is provided a place to live with meals prepared for them. When they speak, how often do we see the world hold a microphone to capture their words in their morbid fascination of death. How often do they use that microphone to ridicule what is right. Their victims are long in the dust deprived of life and liberty. To let them live is a mockery of justice. I do not thirst for blood or death, but I will feel that the equation of justice is balanced when Saddam breathes his last. However, I won't believe it until it happens. This will be a test of resolve for the Iraqi Government. I hope they pass.

Monday, December 25, 2006

America Secure on Christmas Because of Those in our Armed Services

As we all enjoy this special holiday of the year, it is important that we recognize a major factor that keeps it peaceful on our shores. It is those who put their life in danger to protect the lives and freedoms we cherish. Below I present a poem that was written by a serviceman taken after "The Night Before Christmas":
Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone,
In a one bedroom house made of plaster & stone.

I had come down the chimney, with presents to give
and to see just who in this home did live

As I looked all about, a strange sight I did see,
no tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.
No stocking by the fire, just boots filled with sand.
On the wall hung pictures of a far distant land.

With medals and badges, awards of all kind,
a sobering thought soon came to my mind.
For this house was different, unlike any I'd seen.
This was the home of a U.S. Marine.

I'd heard stories about them, I had to see more,
so I walked down the hall and pushed open the door.
And there he lay sleeping, silent, alone,
Curled up on the floor in his one-bedroom home.

He seemed so gentle, his face so serene,
Not how I pictured a U.S. Marine.
Was this the hero, of whom I’d just read?
Curled up in his poncho, a floor for his bed?

His head was clean-shaven, his weathered face tan.
I soon understood, this was more than a man.
For I realized the families that I saw that night,
owed their lives to these men, who were willing to fight.

Soon around the Nation, the children would play,
And grown-ups would celebrate on a bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom, each month and all year,
because of Marines like this one lying here.

I couldn’t help wonder how many lay alone,
on a cold Christmas Eve, in a land far from home.
Just the very thought brought a tear to my eye.
I dropped to my knees and I started to cry.

He must have awoken, for I heard a rough voice,
"Santa, don't cry, this life is my choice
I fight for freedom, I don't ask for more.
My life is my God, my country, my Corps."

With that he rolled over, drifted off into sleep,
I couldn't control it, I continued to weep.

I watched him for hours, so silent and still.
I noticed he shivered from the cold night's chill.
So I took off my jacket, the one made of red,
and covered this Marine from his toes to his head.
Then I put on his T-shirt of scarlet and gold,
with an eagle, globe and anchor emblazoned so bold.
And although it barely fit me, I began to swell with pride,
and for one shining moment, I was Marine Corps deep inside.

I didn't want to leave him so quiet in the night,
this guardian of honor so willing to fight.
But half asleep he rolled over, and in a voice clean and pure,
said "Carry on, Santa, it's Christmas Day, all secure."
One look at my watch and I knew he was right,
Merry Christmas my friend, Semper Fi and goodnight.

Please remember the sacrifices our soldiers make on this day as you celebrate in comfort among family and friends. I wish you all a Merry Christmas.


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Rosa Parks in Jerusalem

All who read my blog know I am a friend of Israel. There are a handful of Jews, though, that I need to take issue with. According to
A woman who reported a vicious attack by an ad-hoc "modesty patrol" on a Jerusalem bus last month is now lining up support for her case and may be included in a petition to the High Court of Justice over the legality of sex-segregated buses.

Miriam Shear says she was traveling to pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City early on November 24 when a group of ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) men attacked her for refusing to move to the back of the Egged No. 2 bus. She is now in touch with several legal advocacy and women's organizations, and at the same time, waiting for the police to apprehend her attackers.

In her first interview since the incident, Shear says that on the bus three weeks ago, she was slapped, kicked, punched and pushed by a group of men who demanded that she sit in the back of the bus with the other women. The bus driver, in response to a media inquiry, denied that violence was used against her, but Shear's account has been substantiated by an unrelated eyewitness on the bus who confirmed that she sustained an unprovoked "severe beating."

Apparently there are some Orthodox groups that don't think men and woman should sit in the same section on the bus. First, I think it is ridiculous. Second, if they really feel this is the way to go I do not understand why they do not let the women sit in the front while the men sit in the back. Women are man's crowning jewel and are to be treated with respect. Here they are treating women like yesterday's trash by making them go to the back of the bus. Well, Miriam Shear refused to be treated like trash and refused to move:
"Every two or three days, someone would tell me to sit in the back, sometimes politely and sometimes not," she recalled this week in a telephone interview. "I was always polite and said 'No. This is not a synagogue. I am not going to sit in the back.'"

But Shear, a 50-year-old religious woman, says that on the morning of the 24th, a man got onto the bus and demanded her seat - even though there were a number of other seats available in the front of the bus.

"I said, I'm not moving and he said, 'I'm not asking you, I'm telling you.' Then he spat in my face and at that point, I was in high adrenaline mode and called him a son-of-a-bitch, which I am not proud of. Then I spat back. At that point, he pushed me down and people on the bus were screaming that I was crazy. Four men surrounded me and slapped my face, punched me in the chest, pulled at my clothes, beat me, kicked me. My snood [hair covering] came off. I was fighting back and kicked one of the men in his privates. I will never forget the look on his face."

Shear says that when she bent down in the aisle to retrieve her hair covering, "one of the men kicked me in the face. Thank God he missed my eye. I got up and punched him. I said, 'I want my hair covering back' but he wouldn't give it to me, so I took his black hat and threw it in the aisle."
What a bunch of animals. Supposedly they make the rule in the name of God, yet they think God is pleased with this savage treatment of a woman? I am proud of this woman for standing her ground and not subjecting herself to being treated like a second-class citizen. She is like Rosa Parks, who refused to go to the back of the bus just because she was black. I love it that she was able to get a clear shot in the privates. I hope her efforts start a dominoe effect for better treatment of women all across the Middle-East.

Thug Terrorism

The Arab world continues to surprise the Western world on how low they can go. The Hamas and Fatah Palestinian factions have been at each others throats with open violence. Just when it was thought things were calming down, Hamas pulls a trick out of its hat usually saved for Jews and the great satan: killing women and children. According to the Media Line:
Hamas gunmen opened fire on a group of women and children to the north of Gaza City on Tuesday evening. Numerous women were wounded according to eyewitnesses.
The group was attempting to prevent Hamas fighters from breaking into Palestinian General Intelligence headquarters where Palestinian Authority armed personnel were holed up. The women and children were barred from advancing and then gunmen opened fire on them, eyewitnesses said.
Of course, from this description Fatah was trying yet another trick, using women and children as human shields to keep them out of PGI headquarters. Sorry, that trick only works on societies who give a rip. Hamas just mowed down the women and children. Of course, the low points did not stop there:
The violence reached a new peak on Tuesday morning when the street battles moved inside Gaza’s A-Shifa medical complex. Mortar shells were fired inside the hospital’s emergency room. A member of Hamas, Isma'il Abu Al-Kheir (25) was killed and 11 people were wounded during the battle.
Nine schoolchildren were wounded on Tuesday afternoon and two armed officers were killed. The dead men were loyal to Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud ‘Abbas. The bodies of two intelligence officers were discovered in a dumpster after they had been kidnapped.
Firing on hospitals, wounding school children and kidnapping officers from the other side. I wonder though if we will start seeing Fauxtography and Professional Wailing Women? So what does all this mean? It means what I have been warning about for some time. When such thug terrorism is sanctioned, sympathized with or overlooked by the world body; it will come home to roost. The Palestinians have been using excuses to target innocent Israeli civilians and received very little criticism for it. Now they don't like the look on the faces of another faction and suddenly they are using thug terroism on their neighbors. It is called reaping what is sown. It is time for the world body to exercise zero tolerance for this thug terrorism. If they don't, it will be coming to their hometown in their lifetime.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Total Disgust With Mike Nifong

I have been ruminating all weekend on the latest chapter in the Duke LaCrosse rape claim saga. Since I have posted on this story before and this by far is the most maliscious action by Nifong, I am driven to post on it. However, I am so dumbfounded I truly do not know what to say. According to the News & Observer:
The head of a private DNA laboratory testified Friday that he and District Attorney Mike Nifong agreed last spring not to report DNA results favorable to Duke lacrosse players charged with rape.

The testimony of DNA Security director Brian Meehan could create difficulties inside and outside the courtroom for Nifong. The district attorney did not challenge Meehan's testimony, but he said after court that he did not withhold evidence. He said the defense could have asked for that material all along.

North Carolina law requires Nifong to hand over all evidence regardless of whether it has been requested. The sanctions for violating this law could include a dismissal of all charges against the three players.

Friday's testimony also will provide grist for those calling for Nifong to be disciplined or prosecuted. A North Carolina congressman recently asked the FBI to investigate the case. And the N.C. State Bar has received a number of complaints calling for Nifong to be disciplined for his public comments condemning the lacrosse players and for directing a police photo identification lineup that violated Durham Police Department policies.

The DNA samples did not match with any of the players, but did contain semen from multiple men. The accuser had claimed not to have engaged in sex for the previous week. On her part this is either a blatant lie or a really bad case of hygienic negligence. On the part of Mike Nifong, it is criminal. His only excuse is that the defense did not ask for the information. He is bound by law to deliver it.

Fox TV has a good show called "Justice" that is in danger of being cancelled. That is too bad, because I liked it. However, I thought they go a little overboard in how they portray the prosecution. Basically, they show that once an indictment is made it does not matter what evidence points to the defendants innocence. They will pursue him like a bulldog. I have also seen this happen in some of the Court TV programs. The prosecution does not want to let go no matter what evidence is found. The situation with Nifong makes me wonder if Justice is not far off of the mark.

Mike Nifong has me completely disgusted. The charges of these kids should be thrown out of court today. Mike Nifong needs to be taken away in handcuffs along with the false accuser. I am sure there are those that are still pushing for a conviction. Their agenda based in race and hatred against these boys for being wealthy is more important than the truth.

When Truth and Lust Conflict

There is no doubt about it that the truth hurts sometimes. Sometimes it is very inconvenient or a great nuisance. Sometimes it gets in the way of what you want. In these cases truth can be dealt with in a number of ways. The best way is to recognize the truth and work to overcome any obstacle that truth may present. Others, however, use other methods. If the truth is not yet out, they try to cover it up and keep truth from seeing the light of day. Once the truth comes out, some try to spin the truth so that the perception of that truth is very different from reality. Still others will nakedly deny a truth that is known by all, such is their lust to get what they want.

Last week a big story was the conference in Iran that looks to deny one of the greatest tragedies of humankind: the Holocaust. It is widely felt that the genocide and suffering inflicted during the Holocaust generated such sympathy around the world for the Jews that it was a major factor in restoring the statehood of Israel that had been taken away 900 years earlier. Iranian lunatic president Ahmadinejad must wake up every day and see that Israel still exists and it pushes him further into insanity; such is his hatred against Israel. So he chooses to simply deny that one of the most documented tragic events in history ever existed to attempt to get what he wants.

In normal circumstances such a lunatic would be laughed off the world stage and never taken seriously again. These are not normal circumstances, though. There are millions who hate the “joooooos” worldwide and are more than happy to look like a fool in order to partake in scheme that might wipe Israel off of the map (no matter how the phrase is interpreted). The fact is that the Holocaust did take place. Millions of Jews including 1.5 million Jewish children were killed in gas chambers, were shot, died of starvation or disease, or died during cruel experiments.

There is no shortage of documentation of the Holocaust. Malott links to some footage on YouTube. SkyePuppy has a post on the Polish concentration camp Stuthoff. There are countless books, newspapers, films, photos and more documenting the reality of the Holocaust. When a man stands up and denies such undeniable truth, he looks small and foolish. He might as well deny the sky is blue or that the grass is green. The millions of puppets around the world that would follow such insanity also look foolish and insignificant.

The Arab world has tried many things to deal with the problem of Israel. They tried war and were driven back. They tried suicide bombers and a wall has been built. They tried kidnapping and rockets but faced a forceful response. They now want to try denying the truth. They want to turn into an army of clowns that perform somersaults, juggle bowling pins and crack jokes. They have tried everything now except peaceful co-existence. Truth can be an obstacle, but it is not the enemy. The truth always points us to what we need to do. The problem is that often what we need to do and what we want to do conflicts.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

If Israel Ceased to Exist We Would See Peace in the Mid-East - Wrong

The recent demonstrations in Lebanon pushing to have more Hezbollah presence in the government is one more proof that Israel is not the key to peace in the Middle East. The Sunni - Shia conflict would be raging on perhaps with greater aggression if Israel did not exist. In fact the existence of Israel is one of the elements that ever draws these two enemies together. Another element is the U.S. presence in Iraq.

According to an AP news story:
Buoyed by the big turnout after a week of street protests, the pro-Syria opposition gave Prime Minister Fuad Saniora an ultimatum of a "few days" to accept its demand to form a national unity government with a big role for Hezbollah or face an escalating campaign to oust him.
Lebanon had a great opportunity to be independent from Syria and many place their sectarian loyalties above that. Do these people realize that a stronger Hezbollah presence means more conflict? Do any of these marching in the streets for Hezbollah ever stop to think what is best for their future and for their families? Or do they only think of hatred and centuries-old hostilities?

In the U.S. we have a similar conflict on a lesser scale. The White/Black animosity from the days of slavery, second-class citizenry, bigotry and inequality cause many blacks to foment hatred for whites and the country in general. However, we see a trend that is very consistent: those that step up and put this hostility and hatred behind them see clearly to look at what is best for their future and the welfare of their families. Many in the black community are pressing ahead and meeting success and in some cases great prosperity.

In the Middle-East men and woman allow themselves to look to the right and left at what their neighbor is doing and saying. Instead of thinking for themselves in behalf of their families, they allow themselves to get swept up into the tornado of hatred and conflict. Opportunities pass them by every day. In the end, if they survive that long, they are old-still embroiled in hatred and conflict and nothing to show for it. In reality they are puppets on a string and pawns for other men who take advantage to gain power and wealth. Look around. The puppet masters who hold the strings live very well don't they?

The masses keep falling for the lie that Israel and now the U.S. is the enemy. Since the conflict would continue if Israel and the U.S. left the region, the real enemy is within the heart of the masses. This enemy is called hatred and is placed in hearts by the puppet masters for personal gain.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Is the Nominee for the House Intel Committee a Michael Brown?

It appears that Nancy "the Stumbler" Pelosi has picked a real loser to chair the House Intelligence Committee. Rep. Silvestre Reyes did so poorly during questioning that even CNN, normally friendly to Dems, has an online article with the title Incoming House Intelligence Chief Botches Easy Intel Quiz. Reyes was asked about two key groups embroiled in the Mid-East violence: Al-Qaeda and Hezbollah. Unfortunately, Reyes was not able to ask the audience or phone a friend and "botched" them. According to the article:
When asked by CQ National Security Editor Jeff Stein whether al Qaeda is one or the other of the two major branches of Islam -- Sunni or Shiite -- Reyes answered "they are probably both," then ventured "Predominantly -- probably Shiite."

That is wrong. Al Qaeda was founded by Osama bin Laden as a Sunni organization and views Shiites as heretics.
Reyes could also not answer questions put by Stein about Hezbollah, a Shiite group on the U.S. list of terrorist organizations that is based in Southern Lebanon.
As is common in Washington, Stein provides a baseball analogy:
"If you're the baseball commissioner and you don't know the difference between the Yankees and the Red Sox, you don't know baseball," Stein said. "You're not going to have the respect of the people you work with."
Of course this is much more serious than baseball. It involves our national security. George Bush took a lot of heat for nominating a former horse trainer to head FEMA. Failures in both jobs can cost lives - and a lot of them. Pelosi needs to take some heat for nominating one so ignorant of the groups that threaten the U.S. and its allies. Reyes should step aside from this nomination and get off the Intel Committee. This is not a position you want "on the job training" for. Pelosi needs to find somebody competent to head this committee or she may find herself looking down at a smoldering hole in the ground muttering "You're doing a heckuva job Reyes".

First the Rug is Pulled Now Comes the Pile-On

First Carter was hit with charges of falsehoods and distortions; then charges of plagiarism. Now there is some friendly fire from Michael Kinsley, a fellow liberal. The main point of dispute Kinsley has is the use of the word Apartheid. He states:
It's not clear what he means by using the loaded word "apartheid," since the book makes no attempt to explain it, but the only reasonable interpretation is that Carter is comparing Israel to the former white racist government of South Africa. That is a foolish and unfair comparison, unworthy of the man who won -- and deserved -- the Nobel Peace Prize for bringing Israel and Egypt together in the Camp David Accords, and who has lent such luster to the imaginary office of former president.
It was a bit hard for me to stomach that last part, but it does show that Kinsley is a friend and not a foe. I for one find the current trend of using extreme words to make a point very disturbing. I don't mean extreme as in superlatives, but words that represent some of the most heinous of events and activities of mankind. Words like Apartheid and Nazi. The use of these words in a context that does not even come to a 1% level of the original atrocity diminishes the word and weakens its power over time. For cheap political shots, the memory of the victims of these horrors will take a back seat to a lesser cause. For fairness I must admit that conservatives have long participated in this by calling those with a leftist idealogy "commie libs". Bu such a watered down use, many around the globe have forgotten the real terror of the gulags, the rape of Nan-King, the killing fields, the millions who died by purging, the millions who died by starvation due to failed policies.

The remainder of the Kinsley column details the differences between Apartheid and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It is worth taking the time to read. Jimmy Carter has truly stepped in it by revealing his incredible bias against Israel. This bias seems to be growing around the world and in the U.S. media. A slower rate in the increase in bigotry against Israel can be absorbed by the media, but Carter went too far too fast to get away with it. Now the pile-on is beginning. I hope there are more on the left that will step up and denounce it.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Rug Being Pulled From Under Jimmy Carter

A second charge in two days has been levelled against Jimmy Carter's new book Palestine: Peace not Apartheid. Yesterday Professor Kenneth Stein, the first director of the Carter Center, terminated his association with the organization. The entire letter of resignation can be found at Powerline Blog. While Stein's association with the center has waned, his letter makes clear that the shortcomings in Carter's new book was the deciding factor. He states:
President Carter's book on the Middle East, a title too inflammatory to even print, is not based on unvarnished analyses; it is replete with factual errors, copied materials not cited, superficialities, glaring omissions, and simply invented segments. Aside from the one-sided nature of the book, meant to provoke, there are recollections cited from meetings where I was the third person in the room, and my notes of those meetings show little similarity to points claimed in the book. Being a former President does not give one a unique privilege to invent information or to unpack it with cuts, deftly slanted to provide a particular outlook. Having little access to Arabic and Hebrew sources, I believe, clearly handicapped his understanding and analyses of how history has unfolded over the last decade. Falsehoods, if repeated often enough become meta-truths, and they then can become the erroneous baseline for shaping and reinforcing attitudes and for policy-making. The history and interpretation of the Arab-Israeli conflict is already drowning in half-truths, suppositions, and self-serving myths; more are not necessary. In due course, I shall detail these points and reflect on their origins.
Now tell us what you really think of the book Professor Stein. Wow. Of course nobody should be surprised to read that Carter has a warped view of the world, historical and present. It can be found clearly in who he chooses to criticize and who he chooses to embrace. The embraced list tends to lean toward dictators and enemies of the U.S.

Today a second person has stepped up to cry foul that Carter used maps in the book without authorization. According to FoxNews:

Ambassador Dennis Ross, a former Mideast envoy and FOX News foreign affairs analyst, claims maps commissioned and published by him were improperly republished in Carter's book.

"I think there should be a correction and an attribution," Ross said. "These were maps that never existed, I created them."

After Ross saw the maps in Carter's book, he told his publisher he wanted a correction.

When asked if the former president ripped him off, Ross replied: “it sure looks that way.”

So on top of the charges undermining the content of the book, it appears Carter committed plagiarism by using the maps without permission. It will be interesting to see how Carter reacts to these charges. In spite of the media's attempt to build up Carter, he continues to embarrass himself. Such is the caliber of Nobel Prize winners these days.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

They Call Her Stumbles

While many politicians stumble here and there in their career, I find it utterly amazing that so far Nancy Pelosi has done nothing but stumble since the election and vote made her the Speaker of the House in waiting. The sad and scary thing is that her stumbles are not trivial. In fact they reveal a serious lack in judgement accompanied by a catty nature and striking ignorance. Here is the rundown so far:

- After claiming the Dems would be running the most ethical Congress in history, Pelosi supported the election of Jack Murtha for the #2 position in the House. Only after the election did the media reveal the stench of corruption that surrounds Murtha. Pelosi's fellow Dems spared her from the ultimate embarrassment of Murtha, but bloodied her nose in the process.

- We have heard that the testosterone driven ego of male politicians are a major cause in many of the problems around the world. Perhaps this is true, but Pelosi's reluctance to select Jane Harmon to head the House Intelligence Committee due to the bad blood between the two reveals problems that can occur when a catty female politician is in power.

- Instead of selecting Harmon, Pelosi was willing to consider putting formerly impeached judge Alcee Hastings in the position. She and other key Dems had voted for his impeachment, but now seemed to think him worthy of this critical position involving our national security. Throughout the discussion of Hastings consideration, Pelosi did not rule him out until it became obvious how damaging the choice would be.

- The latest stumble is a recent statement regarding Iraq and Al Qaeda. Having stated the mantra that there was no Al Qaeda in Iraq before 9/11 so many times, Pelosi had a knee-jerk reaction recently against Bush when he claimed that Al Qaeda was a factor in the insurgency. There is no debate that Al Qaeda has been a major factor in Iraq in recent years. Ten days before Pelosi makes this idiotic claim, Al Qaeda had released a video making the claim that they had 12,000 members fighting in Iraq. (Hat Tip: Boortz)

Nancy Pelosi is now officially known here as the Stumbler. While most politicians may be able to point to some highlights, I cannot think of one highlight since being named Minority Leader. You would think that you could point to the recent election as a highlight, but if you recall, Nancy was in hiding the last weeks of the campaign to avoid hurting it. We have seen someone who is vain, shallow, catty, hypocritical, ignorant and having poor judgement. All this before day one of being House Speaker.