Clear condemnation of terrorism
At last! A clear, unequivocal condemnation of Islamic terrorists by a Muslim leader. I'm thrilled. I hope this group is influential.
I certainly is refreshing to read that. Not one mention of Jews or Israel, no waffling on "in light of American foreign policy..."
Posted On 8/31/2002
by Kieran Lyons
Why Arab students lose.
I found this from Charles Johnson's blog. I was going to post a comment there, but I thought it would be too long, so I'm going to make it a post here instead.
The article was fascinating as a first-person impression of Arab cultural issues and the impact they have on Arab militaries. I went to college (Computer Science Dept, School of Engineering) with a quite large contingent of Saudi and Iranian students. I want to add my observations to some points that were made in the article. I realize that isolated personal observations are not statistically significant, but the following is my personal experience.
[...] the complex mosaic system of peoples creates additional problems for training, as rulers in the Middle East make use of the sectarian and tribal loyalties to maintain power. The `Alawi minority controls Syria, east bankers control Jordan, Sunnis control Iraq, and Nejdis control Saudi Arabia.
The Iranians and Saudis absolutely despised each other. They were cliquish with everyone, but members of each group were at least polite to the rest of us. But, I never once witnessed a single civil word passed between any of the Saudis and the Iranians. I realize that Iranians are generally not Arab, and so the article may not directly apply, but I have to guess that tribal or ethnic rivalries were the cause.
Education is in good part sought as a matter of personal prestige, so Arabs in U.S. military schools take pains to ensure that the ranking member, according to military position or social class, scores the highest marks in the class. Often this leads to “sharing answers” in class — often in a rather overt manner or in junior officers concealing scores higher than those of their superiors.
This happened in spades with the Saudis. The Saudi students within each class level would take exactly the same classes at the same time. They would work on assignments collectively, and they would turn in slightly different versions of the same projects. They were caught cheating on exams dozens of times. The Iranians never did any of that kind of thing, to my knowledge. Oh, and one other thing: even when the Saudis were caught cheating, nothing was ever done to them. They graduated, just barely. I often thought at the time they were just going through the motions.
Apparently, that's how they train for war as well.
Posted On 8/29/2002
by Kieran Lyons
An arrogant, bigoted, ignorant left-wing nitwit
I've never tried this "fisking" thing before, but I am extremely riled by this steaming pile of 99.44% pure bulls**t linked above. The author, a Mr. John Sutherland, appears to consider himself an authority on Middle America. Well, he's talking about me. I live in rural America, in a county that went 67% Bush in 2000. I didn't vote for him, but that still puts me squarely in red state America. Having read Mr. Sutherland's malodorous eructation, I can definitively state that he is an ignorant bigot and a scrofulous cur.
Driving across America is to traverse a mosaic of local radio stations. Outside the metropolitan areas, two kinds of programme dominate: the God channels and "C&W".
On the contrary, what predominates is news and talk radio. I don't even know of any "God channels" in my area. In our local area we have an alternative rock/pop station, a news station, and a public access station, but no "God channels".
Bible-bashers threatening hellfire and fat guys with silly hats, twanging geetars, fu-manchus and pony tails, serenading purty gals, ... values of red neck and blue collar.
So much stupidity, so little time.
Silly hats? This from a country who's contribution to sartorial splendor includes bowlers and bearskin hats? At least cowboy hats are practical. If Mr. Sutherland has ever visited us out west, he would know it's hot during the summer and wet during the winter! Big hats are for protection from the elements! Extrapolating from his feebleminded ignorance, raincoats are "silly" for Londoners and sun hats are "silly" for Tahiti.
Why is it OK for bigots like him to use terms like "red neck"? I may own a small ranch, but I'm also a software engineer. Most people out here have "real jobs" and also run small farms or ranches. I guess white-collar redneck doesn't have the same ring. So much easier for Mr. Sutherland to assume he knows us, to stereotype and impugn.
Since July, one song has dominated the C&W charts, Toby Keith's Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American).,,Keith's "patriotic hit" has enraged liberals (what's left of them).
What's left of them? Presumably he means all the lefties we missed when we rounded them up and ground them into "Victory Sausage" for our Fourth of July barbecues.
He was scheduled to do the show-opener in the ABC's big July 4 TV celebration but was dropped at the last minute at the insistence of the presenter, Peter Jennings.
Jennings is singular within that distinguished generation of newscasters for trying to get into the panties of PLO mouthpiece Hanan Ashrawi, which he never admits to when he allows her to spew excuses for blowing up Jewish babies on his news program.
Jennings is from that distinguished generation of newscasters who dragged middle America back from the Vietnam madness.
Jennings took particular exception to the chorus:
Nothing wrong here. I like it. It simply says that anyone who attacks us will reap what they sow.
Oh, justice will be served
And the battle will rage
This big dog will fight if you rattle his cage
You'll be sorry that you messed with the US of A
Cause we'll put a boot in your ass
It's the American way.
The bit about the boot in the ass (which is, patriotically, not bleeped in broadcasts) gets wild applause at Keith's concerts.
Sorry John, but your ass is showing again. "Ass" is quite benign, and not often bleeped. Teddy Roosevelt would have said it even more bluntly: Walk softly and shove a big stick in their ass.
When the single was reissued on the CD Unleashed, with a picture of Toby and a pit bull out-scowling each other, the album sold 338,000 copies in its first week. On the 9/11 anniversary, sales will go nova.
Good for him. Free markets, free minds and all that. Oh, but that is another indictment of Keith to you EUnich socialists.
America likes to see itself as the world's mad dog.
No, America likes to see itself as the antidote to appeasement of Islamist terrorists and murderers by effete Europeans like you.
You cannot handle that from our perspective, you just don't matter. Europe is militarily weak and politically paralyzed. I doubt there is enough Viagra on the planet for you to stand up for yourselves.
Keith's battle hymn of George Bush's republic climaxes with the rabid threat:
Good, keep the dog metaphor going. If we're a rabid dog, Europe is a castrated poodle.
The "battle hymn" is good too. Can't let your readers forget that we're all Bible-thumping theocrats over here. First lesson of left-wing yellow journalism: trot out every trite stereotype at every opportunity. It acts as a cover for the lack of cerebration.
That's "avenge", not "revenge". Think deposed tyrants. Think proactive self defense.
Hey, Uncle Sam put your name
At the top of his list
And the Statue of Liberty started shaking her fist
And the eagle will fly
And there's gonna be hell
When you hear Mother Freedom start a-ringin' her bell
And it'll feel like the whole wide world
is rainin' down on you
Brought to you courtesy
Of the Red White and Blue."
And who is the "you" on whom "hell" will rain? Think axis of evil. Think blood, rubble and revenge.
Oh, but self defense isn't allowed to you Brits. You have to learn to live with victimhood. Just grab your ankles. You might learn to like it.
Dubya, country to the core, loves Keith.
I assume you prefer Boy George.
And who, you ask, was Clinton's favourite singer? ... Michael Stipe. A wimp president's wimp.
Wow, something I agree with. Clinton is a wimp. Don't let it go to your head.
Whew! Reading the Guardian is bad for your blood pressure, but I feel much better. Now, someone get this shit off my lawn...
Posted On 8/29/2002
by Kieran Lyons
Drooling simpletons and mendacious socialists.
Did you know you can watch streaming video of the bloviations going on at the World Summit on Sustainalble Development?
I listened to two conferences, and boy are they a cure for insomnia. I think the actors can essentially be broken down into three groups:
1. The third-world multi-culti apologists and socialists - the Moaners.
2. The academics and UN functionaries - the Droners.
3. The rabid America haters - The Foamers.
As with the three archetypes, there are essentially three solutions to every environmental problem, real or imagined:
The Moaners: America, give me your wallet.
The Droners: America, give them your wallet.
The Foamers: America, give them your wallet and drop dead.
They would be comical if they were less dangerous.
Posted On 8/28/2002
by Kieran Lyons
These are the guys protecting us?
Since Sept. 11th 2001, we have been told that homeland defense and domestic security are the most important tasks of our government. Well, let's take a look at the front lines of that effort, and what kind of track record our security agencies have.
The primary federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies are the FBI, the CIA, the DEA, the BATF, the US Marshal Service, and the Secret Service. In just the past 10 years, here are the ways that our vaunted security agencies have distinguished themselves.
August, 1992. US Marshals wander onto Randy Weaver's property in Idaho. These intrepid officers trigger a firefight and seige that lasts 11 days and results in the deaths of 1 marshal, Randy's wife Vicki Weaver, their 14 year old son Sammy, and his dog. Randy Weaver is charged with a whole assortment of heinous crimes, but is found not guilty of all but weapons violations. He later sues the government, and the feds settle out of court for $3.1 million. An FBI sniper was later indicted in Idaho for killing Vicki Weaver, but the indictment was dropped last year.
February, 1993. BATF, and FBI agents immolate 76 people, including 27 children in Waco, Texas. If you've never read this Cato Institute report on the incident, you should.
February, 1994. 31 year CIA veteran Aldrich Ames is arrested for espionage. He had been spying for Russia and the Soviet Union since 1985. During that time, he held the position of counterintelligence branch chief for Soviet operations.
In a statement read to the court at the time the plea agreements were entered, Ames admitted having compromised "virtually all Soviet agents of the CIA and other American and foreign services known to me" and having provided to the Soviet Union and to Russia a "huge quantity of information on United States foreign, defense and security policies."
December, 1996. John M. Deutch resigns out as head of the CIA, and soon after classified materials are found on his government-owned home computer. Anyone could have hacked it, even me.
July, 1997. George Tenet begins his tenure at CIA by shooting the bearer of bad tidings. In the words of Jim Hoagland,
Marik's story of the covert debacle, which cost at least $110 million, should have triggered investigations by the agency, the White House and Congress of this particular operation and the future of covert action. Along with the Bay of Pigs in 1961, Iraq stands as the agency's most expensive and embarrassing flop since it was founded on July 26, 1947.
And Tenet, the expert ass-coverer, is still there, and still in charge.
January, 2000. CIA counter-terrorism agents follow two Saudi (of course) nationals named Khalid Almihdhar and Nawaf Alhazmi to a condo in Malaysia. They were meeting with other Al Queda terrorists to plan attacks. The CIA tracked them back to San Diego, and never told any domestic law enforcement agency about them.
Malaysian intelligence chiefs, who kept tabs for the CIA on about a dozen of Osama bin Laden's operatives attending the Kuala Lumpur summit, said they were amazed by the agency's lack of interest in the weeks after the meeting.
Almihdhar and Alhazmi were aboard the plane that hit the Pentagon.
"We couldn't fathom it, really," Malaysia's legal-affairs minister, Rais Yatim, told Newsweek. "There was no show of concern."
With the FBI out of the loop, Alhazmi and Almihdhar lived openly in San Diego, taking flying lessons and using their real names on driver's licenses, Social Security cards and credit cards.
February, 2001. FBI counterintelligence agent Robert Hanssen is arrested and charged with spying for Russia. He got away with it for *15 years* despite erratic and bizarre behavior that should have made him an obvious security risk. At least two US agents were fingered by Hanssen and executed by the Soviets.
May, 2001. The FBI "discovers" that they witheld thousands of pages of evidence in the Tim McVeigh trail, forcing a hold to be placed on his execution and throwing his convicion into question. No heads rolled.
June, 2001. The FBI completely bungles the Wen Ho Lee nuclear espionage case, and then tries to cover up their own malfeasance.
July, 2002. Jon Messner takes control of an Al Queda website. He informs the FBI of it, hoping that they will use it for disinformation purposes. The feds do nothing with it.
August, 2002. Joseph Salvati sues the FBI for $300 million. The FBI covered up the identity of two murderers, and instead sent Mr. Salvati and 3 others to prison for 30 years.
Mr. Salvati, a former truck driver, now 69, had his sentence commuted in 1997 by Gov. William F. Weld. Last year, while he was still on parole, his murder conviction was dismissed by a Massachusetts state judge after the Justice Department task force made public documents suggesting his innocence.
And we all know how successful these champions of our liberty and safety were last September.
Two of the other wrongly convicted men died in prison. Their survivors have joined the fourth man, Peter Limone, in a $375 million lawsuit against the Justice Department. Mr. Limone was sentenced to die in the electric chair. His life was spared only when Massachusetts outlawed the death penalty in 1974.
Do I need to add my conclusion, or does this speak for itself? It's not anywhere near an exhaustive list. I'll wrap this up for those of you who still harbor the illusion that these chair warming bureaucrats and trigger happy thugs are going to protect you. I wouldn't trust these bozos to protect a herd of sheep from Wily Coyote. They are not only utterly incompetent, they are an actual threat to us. Not as much of a threat as the death-cult Islamists, but a threat nontheless.
In each of the debacles listed above, there are common themes. Heavy handedness, bureacratic buck-passing, lying and coverups, blatant criminality masquerading as law enforcement work. And, in most cases, no one pays any price for their misdeeds! In the immortal words of the air boss in Top Gun, I want some butts!
Bureaucrats are interested first and foremost in perpetuating and expanding their authority and power. Truth, justice, and your safety are way down the list. I have no faith at all in either their ability or their intentions, and with good reason. You'd best look to yourself for safety and security.
Posted On 8/27/2002
by Kieran Lyons
Sometimes you see an article you just have to link to, even though you know everyone is goint to see it anyway. This little piece of wit by Colby Cosh is priceless. Here is my favorite line:
Pop quiz: what country is the largest single supplier of crude oil and petroleum products to the United States? Saudi Arabia? Iraq? Nay: the correct answer is "Canada." We may be the retarded giant on your doorstep, in the words of National Lampoon, but we shit pure Texas tea.
I hope that is a Colby Cosh original.
BTW - there was no permalink in the original article, so I linked to the next one down. Scroll up to see the one entitled "F*** me if I can't take a joke".
Posted On 8/26/2002
by Kieran Lyons
This is a certified BLOGGER FREE ZONE™. That means this site's archive/publishing software actually work.
Yes, I once used blogger, but I just became fed up with its bugs and outages.
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