Everybody else is taking a well-warranted dump on the Washington Post blogger —and an almost incredible asshole— William Arkin, so I thought I, too, should point to one of the kernels of his caprolytic thoughts (emphases mine):
I can imagine some post-9/11 moment, when the American people say enough already with the wars against terrorism and those in the national security establishment feel these same frustrations. In my little parable, those in leadership positions shake their heads that the people don’t get it, that they don’t understand that the threat from terrorism, while difficult to defeat, demands commitment and sacrifice and is very real because it is so shadowy, that the very survival of the United States is at stake. Those Hoover’s and Nixon’s will use these kids in uniform as their soldiers. If I weren’t the United States, I’d say the story end with a military coup where those in the know, and those with fire in their bellies, save the nation from the people.
I’m not sure what Arkin thinks he means, but it’s probably got something to do with his best try at referencing two unsuccessful Republican Presidents.
Or maybe Arkin intended to come up with two chickenhawk Republican Presidents! Hmm. That would be just a delicious twist! But, that wouldn’t work, either, see. Nixon served his country honorably in the Second World War as a first lieutenant in the United States Navy, serving in the Pacific Theater. He also spent the next half-century fighting Communism, having shaken hands with Mao, reached detente with the Soviets, and ended America’s involvement in the Viet Nam War.
And what about poor old Herbert Hoover? It’s as easy as falling down to demonize Richard Nixon —Watergate being the only thing that a dolt like Arkin knows of our 37th President— but what did Hoover do to earn Arkin’s notice? Oh! It must have been the Great Depression that did him in (and, of course, the thing about him never serving in uniform, which is always bad and which always disqualifies people from advocating war).
Well, Hoover was a Republican (that’s bad), but he was also one of the great humanitarians of his age (that’s good). Do ignorant people know this about Hoover, or is it simply enough to reference him as synonymous with the Great Depression or whatever it is?
Both during and after the First World War, Herbert Hoover worked tirelessly to save much of Europe from starvation, including our enemies and even the Russians. While the vindictive British and French politicians busily worked to starve the German people in the post-war period, Hoover helped keep them alive. During the war itself, Hoover’s power was so great in Europe that his German passport read:
“This man is not to be stopped anywhere under any circumstances.”
As I say, I don’t know if Arkin was alluding to their common Republicanism or Quakerism or what, but it was an ignorant remark to make about two of the most important figures of the Twentieth Century.
And, let me assure you, what I have just quoted to you from Arkin’s remarks is the least assholish part of them. Don’t read what he wrote unless you’re ready to get angry.
I called up a member of my family on my way home just then and was told that Molly Ivins has passed on.
I am sorry to hear it.
Ivins was a great wit, a distinct voice, and more informed about Texas and national politics than the next hundred bozos with a word processor combined, whatever her politics. Most importantly to me, she was a true ideological hero (do they say heroine anymore?) to my Momma.
I extend my condolences to Molly’s loved ones and to the keepers of the great liberal tradition of this greatest of American states.
David A. Bell, a professor of History at Johns Hopkins University, has written a piece for the Los Angeles Times in which he argues that the atrocities of 11 September 2001 didn’t really warrant America’s terrible vengeance. (Emphasis mine.)
Bell uses the numbers argument thus:
IMAGINE THAT on 9/11, six hours after the assault on the twin towers and the Pentagon, terrorists had carried out a second wave of attacks on the United States, taking an additional 3,000 lives. Imagine that six hours after that, there had been yet another wave. Now imagine that the attacks had continued, every six hours, for another four years, until nearly 20 million Americans were dead. This is roughly what the Soviet Union suffered during World War II, and contemplating these numbers may help put in perspective what the United States has so far experienced during the war against terrorism.
This isn’t an especially amenable argument to either Right or Left: to the Right, because of its notorious habit of being patriotic and taking offense at seeing our country attacked by jihadi mass murderers in whatever numbers and, to the Left, on account of its fetish for making intellectually degenerate comparisons between the number of those murdered on 11 September 2001 and the number of troops we have lost in Iraq.
But Bell doesn’t linger as much on this argument as one would have thought going in. Soon, he slinks into his college boy mode and blames the Enlightenment for America’s overreaction.
Yeah. The Enlightenment.
Until this period, most people in the West took warfare for granted as an utterly unavoidable part of the social order. Western states fought constantly and devoted most of their disposable resources to this purpose; during the 1700s, no more than six or seven years passed without at least one major European power at war.
The Enlightenment, however, popularized the notion that war was a barbaric relic of mankind’s infancy, an anachronism that should soon vanish from the Earth. Human societies, wrote the influential thinkers of the time, followed a common path of historical evolution from savage beginnings toward ever-greater levels of peaceful civilization, politeness and commercial exchange.
The unexpected consequence of this change was that those who considered themselves “enlightened,” but who still thought they needed to go to war, found it hard to justify war as anything other than an apocalyptic struggle for survival against an irredeemably evil enemy. In such struggles, of course, there could be no reason to practice restraint or to treat the enemy as an honorable opponent.
Preposterous sophistry. “The unexpected consequence” of what change? A change in the minds of a relative few who unaccountably regarded war as some sort of evolutionary relic? Speaking of anachronisms! There’s never been a time when such a theoretical and masturbatory notion ever actually mattered. That’s just a conceit of the over-schooled. And now Bell would have us believe that it was the Enlightenment that endowed all wars that followed with a puritanical or otherwise ideological quality that they had not theretofore possessed? Gibberish.
Mankind has been waging war amongst and against itself over questions of ideological purity and supremacy for ever. Whether any warring power has ever considered itself a product of some artificial category —such as an era or an age— is irrelevant.
So why does Bell make this lame argument and attribute to the War against Islamofascism an apocalyptic character that war had long before the Enlightenment? Because he wishes to insinuate that we Westerners have slipped our leashes and now wage war in some unprecedented way:
Ever since, the enlightened dream of perpetual peace and the nightmare of modern total war have been bound closely to each other in the West. Precisely when the Enlightenment hopes glowed most brightly, wars often took on an especially hideous character.
But we do not live in the Enlightenment, professor, however much the vermin need crushing and the tyrants need to bleed.
There is no legitimate reason for Bell to suggest that we are overreacting to the threat of Islamofascism. He wishes to dismiss the present struggle as a criminal matter that was blown out of proportion, but he ignores every other factor that informs this civilizational war. Could a handful of Arab and Muslim states have choked off the world’s energy supply a century ago? When was the last time a mentally ill Iranian demagogue could have threatened to incinerate an entire nation of Jews —and be regarded as potentially capable of such? What is the benefit to human and civil rights in the world to allow sharia law to encroach further upon the West and its friends? No liberal worth his salt can sit there on his stupid hippie ass and seriously declare that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are going to be just fine so long as we don’t let a little mass murder muss our hair.
Any liberal who doesn’t see the necessity of this struggle isn’t really a liberal in any respectable sense of the word, but an out and out Leftist who champions the goals of anti-Western anarchism. But these are the people who see themselves as enlightened in the modern world. They know better than the rest of us that war against the enemies of our way of life is just a game played by the hidden hands and secret cabals of international finance.
What makes their fate so pathetic is that the very people whom they defend against Bushitler would cut their empty heads off just as indifferently as they would mine.
With thanks to Professor Reynolds, have a look at this item at the blog It Shines for All:
We spoke to the former Executive Director of the Holocaust Memorial Council, Monroe Freedman, who confirmed a WorldNetDaily report that he had received a note from Jimmy Carter complaining that there were “too many Jews” on the Holocaust Memorial Council. Professor Freedman also said that Carter’s support for the Holocaust Memorial Council was “principally a political gimmick” based on getting political support from Jews.
Professor Freedman, now a law professor at Hofstra University, also confirmed that a respected Holocaust scholar was rejected as a board member by Carter’s office because the scholar’s name “sounded too Jewish” — although he was a Presbyterian Christian.
Thus did the feather fall from Moishe McGillicuddy’s cap.
Jim Hoft points us to this report:
Tehran, 29 Jan. (AKI) – Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, the Pasdaran, have threatened to abduct US troops if Washington does not release five Iranian officials kidnapped in the northern Iraqi town of Erbil in a raid on Tehran’s consulate earlier this year. In an article published by the Pasdaran’s mouthpiece, Sobhe Sadegh, the director of the centre for strategic studies of the Iranian presidency, Reza Zakeri, also says Iran will retaliate against any further abduction of Iranian nationals.
Five Iranian officials were detained in the Kurdish-controlled city on charges of being connected to a faction of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, the Pasdaran, that funds and arms insurgents in Iraq.
“The United States has put together a list including the names of 35 high officials of the Pasdaran and Iran’s atomic agency to kidnap and question them on the military and nuclear potential of the Islamic Republic but if they will try to kidnap even one person our reaction will be harsh and immediate,” Zakeri wrote in the article.
I’m trying to think of something that would piss us off more than for Iranians to take our troops hostage…
No, sorry. I can’t think of anything.
I think that would even cause Democrats to sound patriotic. You know: at first.
John Fund of The Wall Street Journal writes today about Sandy Berger, notorious thief and liar (emphases mine):
Officials of the 9/11 Commission are now on record expressing “grave concern” about the materials to which Mr. Berger had access. A report from the National Archives Inspector General last month found he took extraordinary measures to spirit them out of the archives, including hiding them in his pockets and socks. He also went outside without an escort and put some documents under a construction trailer, from where he could later retrieve them.
After archives staff became suspicious of Mr. Berger during his third visit, they numbered some of the documents he looked at. After he left, they reviewed the documents and noted that No. 217 was missing. The next time he came, the staff gave him another copy of 217 with the comment that it had been inadvertently not made available to him during his previous visit. Mr. Berger appropriated the same document again.
This wasn’t so much a search-and-destroy mission as it was a grab-anything-you-can-stuff-in-your-trousers-and-destroy mission.
What was so damned important about that document and the others that Berger would have stolen and destroyed them?
The Inspector General’s report found that the papers Mr. Berger took outlined the adequacy of the government’s knowledge of terrorist threats in the U.S. in the final months of the Clinton administration–documents that could have been of some interest to the 9/11 Commission, before which Mr. Berger was scheduled to testify. The Washington Post buried news of the Inspector General’s report on page 7; the New York Times dumped it on page 36.
The Clinton Administration’s knowledge of the perpetrators of the attack on the USS Cole was perfectly adequate. That is to say, they knew full fucking well who did the deed.
Still, they did nothing. Clinton was probably too busy thinking of criminals he could pardon for the benefit of himself and his family.
Now he can think more about his legacy —and how Sandy Bergler’s thievery will always be a part of it.
Jimmy Carter has owned a remark in his latest book in which he clearly advocates the use of terrorism by the Car Swarm People (emphases mine):
“It is imperative that the general Arab community and all significant Palestinian groups make it clear that they will end the suicide bombings and other acts of terrorism when international laws and the ultimate goals of the Roadmap for Peace are accepted by Israel.”
But what’s Carter saying now that he’s been busted?
“I apologize to you personally and to everyone here,” Mr. Carter said when asked about the passage by a student during his appearance at Brandeis University on Tuesday. After explaining that the passage was “worded in a completely improper and stupid way,” Mr. Carter said he has asked publisher Simon & Schuster Inc. to change the wording in future editions of the book.
Where does Carter’s Jew-hatred come from? I say it was from the time he was savagely attacked by that wild rabbi on a fishing trip.
Read this report in the Washington Post:
The Bush administration has authorized the U.S. military to kill or capture Iranian operatives inside Iraq as part of an aggressive new strategy to weaken Tehran’s influence across the Middle East and compel it to give up its nuclear program, according to government and counterterrorism officials with direct knowledge of the effort.
For more than a year, U.S. forces in Iraq have secretly detained dozens of suspected Iranian agents, holding them for three to four days at a time. The “catch and release” policy was designed to avoid escalating tensions with Iran and yet intimidate its emissaries. U.S. forces collected DNA samples from some of the Iranians without their knowledge, subjected others to retina scans, and fingerprinted and photographed all of them before letting them go.
Oh, but if we could only sit down and talk with these people, I’m sure they would listen to reason.
No more of this crap where we let the Iranians operate inside of Iraq with impunity and murder our best and bravest. It’s time to burn them.
Charles Johnson points us to this report in which Ian Blair, London’s chief of police, remarked to a conference on Islamophobia on the subject of the London bombing “suspects”:
“One of the really shocking things … is the apparent speed with which young, reasonably affluent, some reasonably well-educated, British-born people were converted,” police chief Ian Blair told a conference on Islamophobia.
He said the suspects had been converted “from what would appear to be ordinary lives in a matter of some weeks and months, not years, to a position where they were allegedly prepared to commit suicide and murder thousands of people”.
I don’t know why, but this sounds like early and mid-20th Century anti-Communist rhetoric with its quasi-demoniacal explanations of infiltrations and sudden blossomings among the impressionable youth at home.
Of course, we all know now that the so-called menace of the Communist ideology was just a trumped-up ploy foisted on the world by the capitalists. It was a “menace” that never enslaved hundreds of millions, nor waged wars of foreign conquest or internal subjugation. And it never laid siege to human nature —that dreams of individual rights, privileges, and achievements— by imposing a false egalitarianism and real nihilism upon its own citizens.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that we should always listen to the liberals. They’re so much smarter than the rest of us. They know that war never solved any problem that getting on one’s knees would have done for free. After all, when their self-loathing and loathesome ego-complexes become rattled by the reaction that normal Americans around them have to slave ideologies like Communism and Islamofascism, their only recourse is to embrace and manifest the worse qualities of our enemies, having no native sense of patriotism or gratitude to rely on among themselves. But that’s the lot of the cocksucker: you are what you eat.
I went to a few news sites today at work (there’s a phrase that would not have been written 20 years ago) where I happened to notice that John Kerry isn’t running for President.
The links to this story, wherever I went, were to be found in the same sections where one might also have learned that “Mrs. Ballard’s cat stuck in tree” and “Trash pick-up resumes Monday.”
Oh, well! My vote’s wide open now.
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