The Grim Milestone of Blogs "I find the language and rhetoric coming from America too confrontational" - Prince Charles "Nuts" - Gen McAuliffe America: Saving idiots from themselves since WWI

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

UN Oil-for-Food stonewalling continues

Claudia Rosett, deserving of a Pulitzer if those were meaningful any more, continues her one-woman crusade getting to the facts of the largest and most important scandal in geo-political history. The Left continues to believe 'legitimacy' comes from the UN. It's part of their catechism.

It's worth reading the entire op-ed. There must be follow-up on this issue particularly:
.....Another odd oversight in the Volcker report is the glaring lack of follow-up on suppliers--especially ones that were, according to Mr. Volcker, based in places such as Cuba and Afghanistan--that, as far as Mr. Volcker could determine, paid no kickbacks. That could mean they were just companies so honest, selling goods so desirable, that in these cases Saddam simply forsook his crooked ways. Or it could mean Saddam for more worrisome reasons was so eager to transfer money to these companies that he did not even bother to demand a kickback. These companies include U.S. suppliers of food and equipment, a drug manufacturer in Cuba; and a company listed by Mr. Volcker as operating out of both the United Arab Emirates and Afghanistan, some of that during the years in which Osama bin Laden, courtesy of the Taliban, was resident there, planning the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S.
The likeliest explanation of Saddam's growing zest to overpay for relief, and his apparent benevolence toward select companies in places not generally famed for their shopping centers, is that both these tendencies offered Saddam ways to transfer purloined relief money to suppliers who were in a position not only to sell him rice, soap and medicine, but to do sanctions-busting favors for Saddam--such as procure illicit goods, forward money to secret bank accounts, or send it onward to people whom Saddam wished to support. Arms dealers and terrorist groups come to mind. All that would have been possible, under cover of these U.N. contracts, no less. Saddam's suppliers under the U.N. program included companies based in or linked to such financial havens as Liechtenstein and Switzerland; such arms-trafficking hubs as Russia, China and Belarus; and such trouble spots as Syria, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and--as Mr. Volcker notes in passing--Cuba and Afghanistan......

An army of forensic accountants is needed to have any chance of getting to the bottom of this, if they can get the records before the UN shreds what remains. Despite years of UN shredding and cover-up, we're still left with this much evidence. As Rosett says at the top, we're facing a critical deadline before everything goes down the UN Memory Hole.
The most urgent implication of Mr. Volcker's incomplete findings is that his huge and expensively assembled archives must be preserved intact well beyond the Dec. 31 deadline by which Mr. Volcker now plans to start disposing of them. Above all, they must not be handed back to the U.N., where too much related to the corrupt Oil for Food program has already vanished--including, to a fascinating extent, Secretary-General Kofi Annan's own powers of recollection. The former head of the program, Benon Sevan, alleged to have taken bribes from Saddam, was allowed to skip town, U.N. pension in hand. Mr. Annan is even now resurrecting, via a new $4 million U.N. program called the Alliance of Civilizations, the career of his former chief of staff, Iqbal Riza, who officially retired earlier this year after it came to light that during Mr. Volcker's investigation Mr. Riza had overseen the shredding of three years' worth of documents that might have better illuminated the oil-for-fraud shenanigans of the U.N.'s executive 38th floor.

What we do know is damning. It's hard to imagine how far the corruption actually goes.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

With some irony given my last post, are the Chinese and Russians suicidal?

Backing Iran into space? That means Loony-Toon Ahmadinejad would have the capability to kill the infidel anywhere, including Russia and China. But that won't be as large a problem as Israel, Britain, France, and the United States realizing China and Russia just condemned us to death.

Note the article was written by a Shia whose name declares his allegiance to the founder of the Shia sect. Perhaps to be taken with a grain of salt. Or prepare yourself for the hereafter.
By ALI AKBAR DAREINI, Associated Press Writer
28 minutes ago

TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's space agency is trying to snap up technology from abroad as fast as possible for its satellite program, fearing the West will seek to impose restrictions like those put on the Iranian nuclear program.

Iran has major ambitions in space, looking to show off its technological abilities, monitor its neighborhood — where the United States has hundreds of thousands of troops — and establish itself as a regional superpower.

Others are concerned about the program's military applications, particularly Israel, whose existence is opposed by the hard-line Islamic regime in Iran. Iran's Shahab-3 missile, with a range of 1,240 miles, already can reach Israel as well as U.S. forces across the Middle East. [and most of Europe / Wonder why ALI AKBAR left that out? -- Me]

Iran says it only wants to be able to put its own satellites in space to monitor natural disasters in the earthquake-prone nation and improve its telecommunications.

It makes similar peaceful claims for its atomic program, but Washington and others suspect the real aim of that work is to acquire nuclear weapons and have sought to clamp down on Iran's nuclear facilities. Iran worries its space program will be targeted, too.

"The moment they feel Iran has made a breakthrough, they will impose restrictions more than those they have imposed on Iran's nuclear program," said one space official, Mohammad Reza Movaseghinia.

Iran joined the space club last month when it launched its first small satellite, the Sina-1, aboard a Russian rocket.

That orbiter was Russian-made, but Iran built its second satellite, the Mesbah, with help from the Italian company Carlo Gavazzi Space. Mesbah is due to be carried into space by a Russian rocket in about two months.

The two satellites will give Iran a limited capability to monitor the entire Middle East.

Iran's next goal is to launch a satellite with one of its own rockets. Iranian officials say they are developing a Shahab-4 missile that could lift a satellite into orbit, but have not given details on when it will be ready.

"We have to move quickly and achieve our goals in space. Otherwise, we will face political, economic and security threats," [a tacit admission they are building nuclear weapons, if this and the recent discovery of Iranian nuclear warhead design by the UN didn't do it -- Me] Movaseghinia said.

Space agency officials have not given details on what technology or expertise they need from abroad, but they have been racing to learn as much as they can. Under its 20-year plan, Iran aims to become a technological powerhouse of western Asia and a regional superpower by 2025.

Aerospace faculties have mushroomed at Iranian universities in recent years, and Iranian technicians are being trained in Italy, Russia and China on how to design and build satellites. The government has allocated $500 million on space projects for the next five years, Communication Minister Mohammad Soleimani said last week.

Iran is now the world's 43rd country owning a satellite, but the government aims higher.

"We have to build our own satellites, our own launchers. We need to be one of eight top countries mastering space technology," said Ahmad Talebzadeh, the head of the Iranian Space Agency.

Iranian officials point to America's use of space to monitor Afghanistan and Iraq before invading them and say they need similar abilities for their country's security.

Israel also is a leader in satellite technology. Cameras on its Ofek-5 spy satellite have been keeping tabs on activities in Arab countries and Iran since 2002.

Iran says the Sina-1 satellite is capable of monitoring Israel but has no military purposes. Officials describe it as a research satellite and say its camera can't pick out features that are smaller than 50 yards across. U.S. satellites can detect objects just a few feet wide.

Russia, which has helped the Iranians with their nuclear program, appears to be the main partner in transferring space technology to Iran.

"Nuclear officials told us that they don't have a good experience of dealing with Russia," said Talebzadeh, referring to Moscow's slowness in completing a nuclear power plant in Iran. "But countries we can obtain technology from is limited. And we can't ignore the fact that Russia is a world leader in space technology."

In January, Iran signed a $132 million deal with a Russian firm to build and launch a telecommunications satellite within the next two years.

Iran has also signed agreements to launch a joint satellite with China and Thailand.

"We are at the very beginning of a long, long road in space technology. But we have the potential to develop an indigenous space program," said Mohammad Entezari, who is in charge of Iran's Mesbah satellite project.

Hopefully it's typical AP propaganda written for American consumption by a devout Shia. The Chinese and Russians aren't suicidal, are they?

This sounds like bluffing of the highest order to stop civilization from defending itself from the insane leadership of Iran. That's my best guess which doesn't involve the inconceivable.

No American president will let the Iranians destroy us without employing the entire nuclear arsenal of the United States against the nations which made it possible.

Ohio Class submarine captains, start your engines.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Quiet Communist Casualties of the 20th Century: 148 million

I've been following Rummel's work for years. I call democide quiet casualties. Explosions make for exciting journalism, but don't tell the story of Saddam's (a secular socialist Baathist until he saw the upsurge in Islam) mass graves, Stalin and Mao's starvation regimes, or the horrors of the Belgian Congo, just to name a few.

Quiet casualties within Communist regimes alone killed over 140,000,000 people in the 20th Century.

R. J. Rummel, professor emeritus of political science and a Nobel Peace Prize finalist who has published dozens of books chronicling so-called "democide," or death by government, said the new Chinese figure – nearly double his previous estimate of about 38 million – was based on what he believes was Mao's duplicity in China's great famine of 1958 to 1961......

In all, Rummel estimates about 174 million people were killed during incidents of democide in the 20th century, "of which communist regimes murdered about 148 million," he said, adding, "Communists overall have murdered four times those killed in combat."

Don't expect to hear these numbers in an American university unless you take a class from Rummel himself.

China, Cuba, North Korea, and Vietnam (among others) carry the ignoble Communist tradition into the 21st Century.

The Freedoms We Fight For

Or, cringe like pitiful dhimmis.

The unheralded Islamist assault on free speech.
by Daveed Gartenstein-Ross

.....NOT SURPRISINGLY, THE ISLAMIST attack on free speech is even more successful outside of the West. There are numerous examples of people in the Middle East and elsewhere being silenced or seriously threatened because of allegedly offensive speech. In 2002, for example, the governor of Nigeria's Zamfara state issued a fatwa calling for the death of journalist Isioma Daniel after she suggested that, had Prophet Muhammad been alive, he may have wanted to marry one of the beauty queens at the 2002 Miss World pageant. After Daniel's article, riots by Muslim youths left more than 100 dead and 500 injured, and the pageant's organizers were forced to move it out of Nigeria. Daniel appears to be living in hiding to this day.

Another example is Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen, who had a fatwa issued against her in 1993 after the publication of her novel Lajja (Shame), which depicted the persecution of Bangladesh's Hindu minority. The Hindustan Times recently reported that Nasreen "had to leave the country overnight to save her life and his been on [the] run since then."

UNFORTUNATELY, WE IN THE WEST haven't always been vigilant about standing behind speech rights. Too often, when Islamists threaten free expression, some Westerners clamor to make excuses for them. In 1997, for example, Salman Rushdie and novelist John le Carré had a high-profile feud in the letters section of the Guardian. In the course of the feud, le Carré said that Rushdie bore the responsibility for the bounty on his head because "there is no law in life or nature that says that great religions may be insulted with impunity."
.....[read what came before and the rest please -- Me]

CAIR has been more successful in silencing the opposition than Joe McCarthy ever was.

A lie too far?

Now I'm just a simple country lawyer, but I recall the Senate voting it down by a wide margin.
By Peter N. Spotts, Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

MONTREAL - When the Kyoto Protocol took effect in February, many hailed the event as a significant political start in a long-term fight against global warming - despite President Bush's declaration in 2001 that the US no longer would participate.
Ke-rrect me if I'm wrong, but participating without Senate approval would have been unconstitutional exercise of Executive Branch power.

UPDATE: What'cha know? Wal, I reckon 95-0 means something, probably the same meaning as has been given the 1998 Iraqi Liberation Act in recent years.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

DNC open letter to our brave soldiers fighting in the wrong war at the wrong place and wrong time

Dear soldier, sailor, airman, Marine, transgender or otherwise,

It has come to our attention here at the DNC that some Americans feel it might not be the wisest course to criticize the war while soldiers are involved in combat overseas. While we are sympathetic to these concerns, we would like to make it clear that we fully support our men, women, and other in the armed forces. Though we feel the war was poorly-planned, badly executed, unnecessary, and has led to at least 1,000,000 dead Iraqi civilians, we have the utmost respect for our troops in the field. Though the war is a terrible mistake, the effort going into this travesty is top-notch.

When Korans are touched, bodies burned, illumination rounds used, or civilians shot, we will always be there to suggest you be charged with war crimes or handcuffed by your chain of command. Rule of law, which only applies to U.S. soldiers, must be upheld in every war zone, especially one where brave Iraqi freedom fighters must remove the heads of those suffering from encephalophilia.

Again, we commend you for your brave service on behalf of the United States in an effort doomed to failure.

Here's your subpoena,
Howard Dean, MD, BDS, STD's

"From each according to his ability, to each according to his need." -- Karl Marx

Who determines ability and need? -- Me
Ukranian famine
"People ate people, mothers ate their own children. They didn't realize what they were doing, they just were hungry," said Tuz, standing at a thousand-strong rally in the capital Kiev to commemorate victims of the Soviet-era forced famine that killed up to 10 million Ukrainians.

On Saturday, relatives and survivors lit 33,000 candles in Kiev — representing the number of people who were dying daily at the famine's height.

The Soviet dictator Josef Stalin provoked what the Ukrainians called the Great Famine in 1932-1933 as part of his campaign to force Ukrainian peasants to give up their land and join collective farms. During the height of the famine, which was enforced by methodical confiscation of all food by the Soviet secret police, cannibalism was widespread.

Those who resisted the confiscation were sent to Siberia; a person taking a wheat ear from a field was to shot on the spot.

"The state system that made possible such crimes should be punished by the court of history," Ukraine's President Viktor Yushchenko told the crowd.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Being free and intelligent doesn't mean smart or rational

The Oslo Syndrome
By Jamie Glazov | November 25, 2005

FP: Tell us how and why people under siege often end up internalizing the hatred against themselves and delude themselves about the malicious intentions of their enemies?

Levin: They do so because they are eager to feel some control over a painful situation which is, in reality, out of their control. Chronically abused children - more specifically those subjected to parental abuse - typically blame themselves for their victimization because to do so supports a fantasy that if they reform, if they become "good," their parents will treat them differently. To look at their predicament more realistically would force them to accept their helplessness to change their terrible circumstances, and children, and adults as well, prefer to fend off acknowledging such bitter realities.

Similarly, within populations under chronic siege - whether minorities marginalized, demeaned and attacked by surrounding societies or small nations besieged by their neighbors - some will invariably seek either to avert their gaze from the severity of the threat or rationalize the threat and blame themselves or others within their community for the danger. Their doing so reflects wishful thinking that if only they would reform sufficiently the danger would be alleviated.

Bada-bingo! With one proviso: it's not limited to small nations.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Turkey announces zero-tolerance policy, of Kurds

Turkey Vows No Tolerance of Kurd Militants Quick, admit Turkey to the EU. And U.S. out of Iraq! What could go wrong?
By SUZAN FRASER, Associated Press Writer
Fri Nov 25, 5:05 PM ET

ANKARA, Turkey - Turkey vowed Friday to offer no tolerance for Kurdish militants despite concern over actions of its own security forces after a convicted rebel was allegedly targeted in a grenade attack earlier this month.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan presided at a security meeting of Cabinet ministers and military commanders to discuss the Nov. 9 attack on a book shop in the mainly Kurdish town of Semdinli, which killed one person but not its apparent target.

The attack raised fears that security forces had attempted the kind of summary execution that was common in the fight against Kurdish rebels in the early 1990s. It sparked days of rioting by Kurdish rebel sympathizers that left four people dead.

The government has promised a thorough investigation and no cover-up, and parliament this week voted to set up its own committee to look into the attack.

Islam: starting the debate

With this post I suggested Ibn Warraq, among others, should be heard. His book, Why I Am Not a Muslim should be given much more attention than the works of former nun Karen Armstrong, among many others. Warraq knows of what he speaks. Some have alleged Armstrong is a secret convert to Islam.

In Chapter Eight, Arab Imperialism, Islamic Colonialism, Warraq dismisses the prevailing 'wisdom' as propaganda:
Open any modem introductory book on Islam and the chances are you will find that it begins by singing the praises of a people who conquered, in an incredibly short period, half the civilized world—of a people who established an empire that stretched from the banks of the Indus in the east to the shores of the Atlantic in the west. The volume will recount in positively glowing terms a time when Muslims ruled over a vast population of diverse peoples and cultures. One can hardly imagine a contemporary British historian being able to get away with similar eulogies on the British Empire, of a time when a large part of the world was colored red in English atlases to indicate the British Empire and possessions. While European colonialism and imperialism (both being general terms of abuse by now) are blamed for every ill on earth, and something of which all Europeans are made to feel ashamed, Arab imperialism is held up as something of which Muslims can be proud, something to be lauded and admired.

The Islamic exception seems to be a part of ordinary life.

Why is Israel besieged by critics for being a "Jewish State" despite the freedoms it gives its non-Jewish population while Saudi Arabia affords NO freedom to its non-Muslim population? The only exception is compounds which house foreign workers. It's not so much freedom as isolation.

I prefer the Guardian for my doomsday global warming news

Sea level rise doubles in 150 years
· Increase blamed on fossil fuel use since 19th century
· Cut in greenhouse gases futile, researchers say
Ian Sample, science correspondent
Friday November 25, 2005

The oceans will rise nearly half a metre by the end of the century, forcing coastlines back by hundreds of metres, the researchers claim.

You heard it folks. We may only have a hundred years to build sea walls a half meter high in some places. Is our advanced technological civilization up to the task? Only time will tell, and I doubt I have enough of it.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

The usual suspects get flustered

As I mentioned before some British bureaucrats floated a story which alleges President Bush suggested bombing Al-Jazeera to Tony Blair.

Reagan once said he was going to bomb the Soviet Union in five minutes during a sound check. What Reagan said was ridiculous and he didn't mean it.

Let's assume, arguendo, President Bush said it and meant it. What's wrong with the idea other than there are better ways to stop or use Al-Jazeera?

The media could not care less about terrorists killing American soldiers, blowing up children seeking candy, car bombs in mosques, or beheading snuff videos. Those happen to the peons. We must try to understand the root causes and legitimate grievances of the alienated underclass, blah, blah. But if someone notices the media is the primary weapon in the terrorists' arsenal, suddenly moral lines must be drawn in the sand.

"That's other people. Now you're talking about the MEDIA!"
Let me shed a brief tear for these brave media types who report nasty things about our soldiers from the safety of the Green Zone, or embed themselves with terrorists who kill our soldiers. OK, I'm finished.

How many op-eds have you seen taking on the many war crimes committed by terrorists? I don't recall any. Shouldn't the media which turns mass murderers into soldiers hold them to the standards of soldiers? In the real world, of course not.

Shock, outrage, disbelief!
We all hope and pray that the American President was engaging in nothing more than neo-con Tourette-style babble about blowing things up. We are quite prepared to believe that the Daily Mirror is wrong. We are ready to accept that the two British civil servants who have leaked the account are either malicious or mistaken. But if there is one thing that would seem to confirm the essential accuracy of the story, it is that the Attorney General has announced that he will prosecute anyone printing the exact facts.

To be fair to the Americans, we must also accept that they had good grounds for resenting al-Jazeera. The station is hugely respected in the Arab world, has about 35 million viewers, and yet it gives what can only be described as a thoroughly Arab perspective of current affairs. It assists in the glorification of suicide bombers; it publishes the rambling tapes of Bin Laden and others among the world's leading creeps and whackos; it is overwhelmingly hostile to America and sceptical about the neo-con project of imposing western values and political systems in the Middle East.

This from a Euro-weenie who thinks the UN is something more than a group of totalitarian kleptocrats.

They're not "western values" jackass, they're "universal" values.

Haughty, self-righteous, self-aggrandizing, selfish, faux-fair journalists should feel the terrorist acts they love to promote. Then, perhaps, the preceding document will apply to more than just the United States.

UPDATE: As if I need to prove what I just said, as it's self-evident to anyone who reads the news, I will anyway.

Typically value-neutral coverage of a mass murder of civilians by suicide car bomber

Suicide Car Bombing Kills 30 in Iraq

By BASSEM MROUE, Associated Press Writer
28 minutes ago

BAGHDAD, Iraq - A suicide car bomb detonated outside a hospital in the center of a town south of Baghdad on Thursday, killing 30 people including four police guards, three women and two children, a doctor said. The bomber was targeting U.S. military vehicles parked nearby, an Iraqi army officer said.

The U.S. vehicles were parked near the hospital in Mahmoudiya, about 20 miles south of Baghdad, where U.S. soldiers were distributing toys to children in the hospital, another Iraqi soldier said.

Dr. Dawoud al-Taie, the director of the Mahmoudiya hospital, said 35 people were wounded in the morning attack.

Iraqi army Capt. Ibrahim Abdeallah said two U.S. soldiers were among the wounded and one Humvee was damaged.

Mahmoudiya is a religiously mixed town in the so-called triangle of death, a region known for attacks on coalition forces and Shiites moving through the area to visit shrines south of the region.

In the southern Dora neighborhood of Baghdad, gunmen ambushed a police patrol on Thursday, killing four officers, police Capt. Qassim Hussein said.

In a separate attack, a bodyguard for the head of the Iraqi Islamic Party branch in Khalis, 50 miles north of Baghdad, was wounded in a drive-by shooting Thursday morning. Hussein Abid al-Zubeidi, who is also a member of the Diyala provincial council, said he escaped unharmed from the attack near Baqouba, 35 miles northeast of Baghdad.

In a similar shooting, former Iraqi army Col. Hussein Mohammed was killed late Wednesday in Baqouba, said Dr. Ahmed Fouad, a morgue attendant.

There have been repeated in insurgent attacks in the Khalis-Baqouba area, mostly focusing on Iraqis who join the security forces or participate in politics.

Elsewhere, three American soldiers from Task Force Baghdad died of gunshot wounds Wednesday, the U.S. military said. Two died in southwest Baghdad, while another died in central Baghdad, the statement said.

Government spokesman Laith Kubba predicted insurgent attacks would rise before elections on Dec. 15. "Muslim extremists and Saddam (Hussein's) criminals" will be making their last stand, he told a news conference on Thursday.

On Wednesday, gunmen wearing Iraqi army uniforms burst into the home of a Sunni Arab sheik, killing him, three of his sons and a son-in-law in an attack police said may have been aimed at discouraging members of the minority from participating in next month's election.

Khadim Sarhid al-Hemaiyem, who lived on the outskirts of Baghdad, was the leader of a branch of the Dulaimi tribe, one of the biggest in Iraq. His brother is a candidate in the Dec. 15 parliamentary election, three of his sons had been policemen and another son was slain last month north of the capital, police and family members said.

The brutal attack on the sheik and his family took place amid a major campaign by U.S. and Iraqi authorities to encourage Sunni Arabs to vote next month in hopes of luring them away from the insurgency.

Some insurgent groups have declared a boycott of the election and have threatened politicians who participate. Police said they suspected the sheik's death was designed as a warning to Sunni Arabs against heeding the U.S. call.

The Iraqi Islamic Party, the country's biggest Sunni political group, also condemned the assassination and demanded that the Defense Ministry "control its forces and punish the perpetrators."

Police Maj. Falah al-Mohammedawi denied that government forces were involved in the killings and blamed the insurgents.

Wascawy caws, always detonating! At least the shahid was trying to kill American soldiers. Just some collateral damage, nothing to see here.

OMG, a "brutal attack" on a sheik. Now THAT is something to be concerned about.

Training Iraqi security forces might take a little longer if they continue to 'fight' on both sides.

Heaven is Reno, Nevada with Paris Hilton's American Express Card

(MEMRI) If you tried, could you make up a more conflicted set of beliefs about sex than exists in Islam? The Shakers look like experts in quantum mechanics compared to this crap.
In a November 15, 2005 article in the Saudi daily Al-Iqtisadiyya, Sa'ad Al-Sowayan, a reformist Saudi researcher and columnist argued that religious cassettes, which are widely available in Saudi Arabia, advocate Jihad by emphasizing the sexual reward awaiting the martyr in Paradise. This is aimed at tempting teenagers who can find no sexual release in conservative Arab society. An English translation of the article was published in the Saudi Gazette on November 17.

Religious Cassettes Promoting Jihad

"So ubiquitous are the religious cassette shops that they are outnumbered only by groceries… The bulk of cassettes sold in these stalls are motivational. On closer scrutiny, you will realize that their contents are confined to a system of thought that serves to prepare youth to accept its ideas, yield to them, and adopt its Jihad program.

"These cassettes mostly urge people to carry out Jihad through taking up arms, without specifying the zero hour or the Jihad battlefield. As such they advocate Jihad for Jihad's sake. It's a mobilization campaign in which Jihad becomes a state of mind, a mode of living. They want you to give up this foul and mean earthly life, renounce worldly pleasures, devote your life to Jihad, and seek to die in the Jihad battlefield so as to win martyrdom."

Spiritual Martyrdom is Reduced to Jihad for Lust

"The basic Islamic issue - carrying out Da'wa (Islamic propagation), calling people to Allah, spreading monotheism (Tawheed), security and Islam, establishing justice, and treating people on equal terms - is reduced to a marginal matter in comparison to the pleasures in the Hereafter that the martyr can win, pleasures that supersede worldly pleasures and must be given up.

"The modern martyr has thus reduced spiritual martyrdom [for the sake of Allah] to a Jihad for lust, for the utmost pleasure and intoxication a Nirvana state of mind.


"The sweetest thing for a teenager, especially in a conservative society like ours, is sex, and the discourse of the religious cassettes is directed toward these very youngsters in their sexual peak of life. They access these youth through the Hoor Al-Een, just as how the youth of our time were drawn to slide pictures of actresses and female singers. So should we not consider sexual suppression in conservative societies as one of the factors leading to such deviation?…"

You can marry four women, but can't see an ad for underwear on a billboard. You can blow up crowds of civilians, but don't singe a Koran. You will get 72 virgins in heaven, but slice the clitoris off your wife.

Inbreeding must be a huge factor in all this. Marrying first cousins for generations may not be the best way to build a healthy society.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Hypocrisy Alert! - U.S., Muslims and Democracy

I'm not accusing the author, but warning my national leadership.

"American officials must recognize the contradiction in their simultaneous support for democracy and dictatorial Muslim regimes" -- Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
By Husain Haqqani
The Indian Express, November 18, 2005

A US-sponsored international conference on democracy in the Middle East ended last week without a final agreement because one of America’s closest allies, Egypt, insisted on retaining control over the pace and method of democratization. The Forum for the Future, a joint US-European initiative launched at the 2004 G-8 summit hosted by President Bush is part of the Bush administration’s plans for promoting democracy in the Islamic world. But the authoritarian governments that receive massive amounts of aid from the US do not want democracy.

As Egypt, which accounts for a quarter of the Arab world’s population and is the second-largest recipient of US aid, demonstrated at the Bahrain meeting of the Forum for the Future last week, Muslim dictators want to control the democratisation process and would love to get more American money in the name of building democracy. If Hosni Mubarak had his way, the way forward for the US and the Muslim world would be for the US to increase aid for the authoritarian Muslim regimes and declare these very regimes as democratic.

Officially, of course, Egypt neither objected to democracy nor to fostering civil society. It spoke in the name of national sovereignty and its officials emphasised that peace in the Middle East must precede full democracy. From North Africa to Pakistan , such arguments have always been the grounds for potentates to thwart real change in the way their countries are governed.

Slogans of “Palestine before democracy” or “Kashmir before normalisation” enable America’s authoritarian allies to carry on business as usual. For its part, Washington knows the game but continues to play along. Even after the setback at the Forum for the Future in Bahrain, US officials were muted in their criticism of the rulers they finance. For the sake of stability in the region, the US is willing to pursue a dichotomous policy. It keeps on defining democratisation as its priority but refuses to condemn those that obstruct its democratisation agenda, namely the Muslim potentates Washington trusts with ensuring stability.

.....[Read the rest if you please -- Chip]

There's that word again, "stability." The Soviet Union was stable under Stalin. Hitler was all about stability, and expanding it to other nations. If you were unstable in Pol Pot's Cambodia you found yourself in a pile of bones. And so on...

UPDATE: Americans aren't the only hypocrites. It's a big tent which includes Arab 'liberals.'

Indifferent to Democracy

Indifferent to Democracy
Why the Arab world roots for American failure in Iraq.


.....But even with respect to Iraqi nationalism, Arabs have little to cling to. Iraqi displeasure with the U.S. may be genuine, but has largely been framed parochially, not by a desire to re-create a broad Iraqi national self--though the impulse may yet be alive in some quarters. Is that letdown surprising? After all, Saddam Hussein's Baathist Iraq, like Hafez Assad's Syria, blended symbols of nationalism with the counterfeit comprehensiveness of Arab nationalism, all to burnish systems that were--are--duplicitous facades for minority rule.
It is politically, however, that Arab societies, specifically liberals, failed to see the advantages in the removal of Saddam, regardless of their antipathy to the Bush administration. Here was an opportunity to cheer on the emergence of an Arab democracy, with deep implications for democracy at home, and it was missed. More disturbing was that this need never have contradicted Iraqi sovereignty. Washington could have been repeatedly reminded by Arab democrats keen to see the Iraq project succeed for their own good, that true democracy meant, after a period of stabilization, allowing Iraq to be free of foreign interference. Yet other than from the Iraqis themselves, the argument was rarely heard in the Arab world; advantageous pragmatism was supplanted by stubborn attachment to principle--"principle" that, in yearning for American failure, ignored how Iraqis suffered from the ensuing carnage.

Saddam's fall was welcomed by shamefully few Arabs (I recall how, on the day of his capture, a liberal Arab intellectual living in the U.S. mainly regretted that this would bolster George W. Bush's popularity ratings): The "humiliation" of seeing an Arab leader toppled by Western armies far outweighed that of seeing one of the most talented of Arab societies, the Middle East's Germany, subjected to a ferocious despotism responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths. Nor was there much interest regionally in the discovery of the Baath's mass graves. One reason was the secondary concern that many Arab societies have for Saddam's foremost victims--the Shiites and Kurds; but the main cause of indifference was that Saddam's crimes, if acknowledged, threatened to imply the Arabs' inability to responsibly manage their own emancipation.

The self-abuse of language

It could make you go blind.

"Deferred Success" is new term for failure - report
By Arthur Spiegelman
Fri Nov 18, 1:40 AM ET

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - In 2005, some people wanted the word "brainstorming" replaced by "thought shower" so as not to offend people with brain disorders, and they also wanted "deferred success" to replace "failure" so as not to embarrass those who don't succeed.

Both phrases appear on a tongue-in-cheek list released on Thursday of the year's most politically correct words and phrases issued by Global Language Monitor, a nonprofit group that monitors language use.

The phrase that topped this year's list was "misguided criminals," one of several terms the BBC used so as not to use the word "terrorist" in describing those who carried out train and bus bombings in London that killed 52 people in July, according to Paul JJ Payack, the head of Global Language Monitor.

He added, "The BBC attempts to strip away all emotion by using what it considers 'neutral' descriptions when describing those who carried out the bombings in the London Tubes."

Second on the list was "Intrinsic Aptitude," a phrase used by Harvard University President Lawrence Summers to explain why women might be underrepresented in engineering and science. The phrase met with "deferred success" and Summers had to fight to keep to his job.

"Thought shower" was third and a French word for riff-raff or scum, "la racaille," was fourth thanks to being used by French Interior Minister Nicholas Sarkozy to describe rioters of Muslim and North African descent in suburbs outside of Paris.

"Out of the mainstream," which Payack said was used to describe the ideology of any political opponent, was fifth and in sixth place was "deferred success" the euphemism for "fail" that the Professional Association of Teachers considered using to bolster students' "self-esteem." The move met with "deferred success."

Seventh on the list was "womyn" for women in order to distance the word from men and eighth was using C.E. (Common Era) for A.D (Latin for "Year of Our Lord") so as to be more neutral in dates.

Ninth on the top 10 list was words and phrases that either de-Christianise the Christian holidays or neuter their genders. For example "God Rest Ye Merry Persons" replaces "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" and "Seasons Greetings" replaces "Merry Christmas."

In 10th place was a move aimed at the heart of Australian culture when security staff were banned from using the word "mate" to address members of parliament. The MPs rebelled and said not being called "mate" was unpatriotic.

These examples are mostly humorous, but point to a disturbing trend. If you check my profile - join the over 800 people who have! - you'll notice I list 1984 first on my list of favorite books. For me, the most fascinating aspect of the novel is Newspeak. Newspeak (the official language of the party) is based on the principle that thought cannot exist in reality if there are no words to express it. There is some truth to this notion and one must not be cowed by those who attempt to change language to suit their political agenda.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

AP sees the light, and it is good (thanks Yahoo)

Real gulags, not three squares a day in sunny Cuba, still exist. Someday, when the facts come out, if they ever do, I think we will find that the North Korean mass murder machine rivaled Pol Pot and Hitler,** if not Stalin and Mao. Nobody knows how many people have died in the gulags of North Korea since Stalin installed the first "Great Leader."

North Korea will imprison someone for the slightest insult of Kim Jong Il. Whole families will suffer the same fate so the 'crimes' of "counter-revolutionary thought" or "reactionary thinking" don't spread. Human beings are used as guinea pigs for chemical weapons testing, reminiscent of Unit 731*** (Japanese occupied China). Starvation, beatings, and summary execution are the norm. Forced abortions have been reported, along with persistent stories of cannibalism.

By KWANG-TAE KIM, Associated Press Writer
Tue Nov 22, 2:35 PM ET

SEOUL, South Korea - A former North Korean political prisoner Tuesday offered grim details of life in a communist regime prison camp, saying he saw many inmates die from overwork and starvation.

The ex-inmate, who survived the prison camp at Yodok, about 70 miles northwest of Pyongyang, said a former defector was beaten to death for having contacted Christian representatives in China, he said.

"Most people died of malnutrition and its complications," said the inmate, who used the pseudonym Kim Chol-soo to protect relatives in the North from retaliation. Wearing a dark hat and hospital mask to hide his face, Kim told a news conference that prisoners received a starvation ration of 21 ounces of food a day.

Kim said some inmates didn't mourn the deaths of fellow prisoners because they could get more rations if they buried them.

"I once buried a man, and it was good, as I ate fully that day," Kim said.

He gave reporters a list of inmates including 34 North Koreans who had tried to defect and 82 others including former senior bureaucrats, security officials and a diplomat. The identities of the prisoners could not be independently confirmed but Kim said he remembered their personal details because he was in charge of supervising fellow inmates.

Kim released the list in cooperation with the activist group Democracy Network against North Korea Gulag. The group's members include prominent defector Kang Chol Hwan, author of a memoir about his decade of detention at Yodok, who met this year with President Bush.

The North claims it doesn't violate human rights despite widespread accusations of torture, public executions and other abuses. Between 150,000 and 200,000 people are believed to be held in its prison camps for political reasons, the State Department said in a report earlier this year.

*Sorry, nothing here.

** Ignoring the fact Hitler started WWII for a moment. That body count would put him at the top of the list.

*** Some scientists from Unit 731 were later excused for their crimes against humanity to be employed by the United States, sans human experimentation.

UPDATE: Frontpage Mag - Ignoring the Desperate People

Ignoring the Desperate People
By Gordon Cucullu | November 22, 2005

President George Bush and South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun met in Kyongju just prior to the Asia-Pacific Economic Conference. They toured the famous Bulguksa temple and its grounds while discussing options to deal with another part of Korea overrun by aberrant ideology: communist North Korea under dictator Kim Jong Il. That the two leaders seemed to come away from their bilateral meetings with a common cause was heartening for many observers. There have been serious issues between the Roh and Bush administrations, most centered around North Korea.

The rift between America and South Korea has been growing since 1997 when committed leftist Kim Dae Jung was elected to the presidency. Kim actively moved the government of South Korea away from open conflict with North Korea. Moreover, in a diplomatic maneuver called “duplicitous” by former National Security Advisor Richard Allen, Kim positioned South Korea between North Korea and the U.S. as a supposedly neutral broker between the two. After decades of standing shoulder to shoulder with South Korea against hostile forces, Kim betrayed that relationship by cozying up to the North.

It was revealed after Kim left office and his like-minded successor President Roh Moo Hyun took office, that massive corruption and bribery characterized the Kim presidency. In fact, upwards to $1.5 billion US dollars were funneled surreptitiously to North Korea by Kim in order to establish a pretense that his vaunted “Sunshine Policy” was working. While the move won Kim the Nobel Peace Prize (joining luminaries like Yassar Arafat and Jimmy Carter) his real legacy will be his craven approach to South-North relationships and his disgraceful venality. Kim was willing to sacrifice as many of his Northern brothers and sisters as necessary in order to make his own legacy a success. Like many who value legacy over morality and who lack courage to do the right thing, Kim’s memory is forever tarnished.

Unfortunately, Roh Moon Hyun is following in his predecessor’s footsteps. His administration may not be as crooked, although cursory contemporary investigations would lead us to think that corruption is pervasive. Nevertheless, Roh has vigorously pursued a policy of appeasement toward the North and consistently voiced veiled hostility and suspicion toward the US. That said, some of the actions of the Roh government have been supportive of US regional and international policy. The South Koreans have fielded a 3,300-man troop contingent that is serving in Iraq as part of the Coalition forces.

So while President Bush owed a thank you to Roh for his country’s support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Iraqi reconstruction, Bush would have been justified in pushing Roh toward a more moral position on North Korea. Bush was firm, as had been expected, about Kim Jong Il’s continued development of nuclear weapons. Under Bush and Clinton before him, U.S. policy has been set against a nuclear North Korea. However, the two American presidents adopted radically different policies toward achieving that goal.

As detailed in my book Separated at Birth, the North Korean nuclear issue has dominated regional relationships with North Korea since the late 1980s. The original dictator of North Korea, Kim Il Sung, had nuclear ambitions as early as the mid-1960s. In 1994 when it seemed as if the crisis would reach a flash point, former President Jimmy Carter, at the urging of then Vice President Al Gore, was given the green light to cut a desperate deal with North Korea (See also Ben Johnson’s recent reviews of Carter’s new book). For a decade afterwards the world was able to pretend that North Korea had ceased nuclear ambitions. However despite promises to the contrary, nuclear and missile research dominated Kim’s priority list. Meanwhile, food aid poured into the small country in unprecedented amounts.

While receiving unimaginable amounts of food aid, fuel oil, medicines, economic investment, and hard cash transfers, the Kim Jong Il regime diverted the aid to military and party pockets. Using starvation as civilian control measures, Kim cold-bloodedly allowed upwards of 3 million innocent North Korean citizens to starve. In a country of mass hunger, Kim directed that 25% of collective farmland be converted to opium poppy growth. Kim liked to manufacture heroin and sell it for scarce hard currency. He expanded the concentration camps to clamp down further on his restless population, and reacted hysterically to any refugees unlucky enough to be captured and returned to North Korea by China’s harsh forcible repatriation policy. Summary public executions became common, and have even made a special program on CNN that showed smuggled video of refugees being shot at the stake amidst a public poverty and squalor that defies description.

We know from credible sources that experimentation with poison gas is common in Kim’s prisons along with testing of poisons and biological warfare agents. We have documented stories of forcible abortion of pregnant women, persecution of Christians, and elimination of families down through three generations by a paranoid, self-absorbed dictatorship. In America last year, after months of hard work, primarily by members of the North Korea Freedom Coalition, especially Suzanne Scholte and Mariam Bell, Congress passed and the president signed the North Korea Human Rights Act. This is a remarkable act in that it acknowledges the horrible abuses of the Kim regime and that requires all negotiations and interactions with North Korea include demands of immediate reform.

For this reason, it is a continuing disappointment that discussions with North Korea, South Korea, China, Japan, and Russia – all Six Party talk members – have failed to abide by both the spirit and letter of the new law. Even President Bush on this most recent Asia visit, at least according to preliminary reports, did not raise human rights issues along with the strategic arms limitations as is required. While we do not know for a fact that human rights in North Korea was not discussed, it is apparent that none of the covering media reported such discussions, nor were they mentioned in depth in any of the bilateral memoranda issuing from high level meetings.

While diplomats continue to posture and country leaders continue to maneuver, the people of North Korea continue to suffer. America leads the world in moral clarity and expressed values. In order to be true to that vision, we must speak for the people of North Korea until they are allowed to have their own voice.

This is an important read because it highlights the disconnect between Washington and Seoul on the critical issues of diplomacy, security, and crimes against humanity. Many South Koreans seem to think the United States is the problem. The obvious solution is withdrawl of all ground troops from South Korea. It will give the DPRK one less reason for paranoia. But I'm sure they will quickly adapt and find the withdrawl 'threatening' in some way.

A "Al Qaeda" P pumping up their 'insurgents' with more numerology

Hey, 'progressives' it's time for another round number party! Bring your own bong.

Another triumphant headline, lead story at Yahoo, from the treacherous mainstream media, supporting their forces of darkness with all their might.

Iraq Bomber Kills 17; U.S. Toll at 2,100

By BASSEM MROUE, Associated Press Writer
52 minutes ago

BAGHDAD, Iraq - A suicide car bomber attacked a police patrol Tuesday in the northern city of Kirkuk, killing at least 17 people, and three U.S. soldiers died in two separate attacks, pushing the American death toll in Iraq to 2,100, officials said.

In Saddam Hussein's hometown of Tikrit, insurgents fired a mortar at a U.S. ceremony attended by top officials to hand over a presidential palace to Iraqi authorities, sending the U.S. ambassador and top commander scrambling for cover but causing no injuries.

The attackers in Kirkuk lured the patrol to a busy commercial street by shooting a policemen, then struck with the suicide bomb as authorities investigated the shooting, said police Capt. Farhad Talabani. The bombing took place on a road leaving Kirkuk, 180 miles north of Baghdad.

Police Brig. Gen. Sarhad Qader gave the casualty figure of 17 dead and 26 wounded but did not say how many were civilians.

Attacks on the security forces in Kirkuk are common. Insurgents last week in Kirkuk opened fire on a police patrol, killing three officers, while a roadside bomb a few miles away killed two more police officers.

The U.S. military said a U.S. soldier assigned to the 2nd Marine Division wask killed after a bomb detonated near his vehicle Monday near Habaniyah, 50 miles west of Baghdad. There are several U.S. Army units assigned to the Marine division.

In addition, two soldiers from Task Force Freedom were killed Saturday by small arms fire while on patrol in Mosul, 225 miles northwest of Baghdad, another statement said.

As of Tuesday, at least 2,100 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq war in 2003, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,638 died as a result of hostile action, according to the military's numbers. The figures include five military civilians.

"Could be more! Don't give up killing! We love these stories. We here at AP / Yahoo / BBC / Fox / NYT (etc.) will do all we can to trumpet your accomplishments while downplaying and questioning everything U.S. troops do in Iraq."

The mainstream media is like a vulture, but without a useful niche in its ecosystem.

Open source knee-jerk reaction

[UPDATE: AKA "Pajamas Media" "Internet Brownshirts" "Philosphical Assassins" - pending Mary Mapes' latest appellation]
...on the "timetable" for pullout. Maybe letting bloggers shoot from the hip for analysis isn't all it's cracked up to be.

Um, guys, read the article. That's the Bush plan. Tying drawdown to the training of Iraqi security forces is not exactly "eyes only".

There is no "time"table. What they proposed is nothing new. If there were an actual date mentioned, then it would be a timetable.

Iraq's government, to Sunni Arabs ahead of parliamentary elections that have been put on shaky ground by weeks of sectarian violence.

About 100 Sunni, Shiite, and Kurdish leaders, many of whom will run in the elections Dec. 15, signed a closing memorandum on Monday that "demands a withdrawal of foreign troops on a specified timetable, dependent on an immediate national program for rebuilding the security forces," the statement said.

"The Iraqi people are looking forward to the day when foreign forces will leave Iraq, when its armed and security forces will be rebuilt, and when they can enjoy peace and stability and an end to terrorism," it said.

"By mid-next year, we will be 75 percent done in building our forces, and by the end of next year it will be fully ready," Jabr told Al Jazeera, the pan-Arab news channel.

The last paragraph is a bit like a timetable, but still dependent upon the prediction coming true. I prefer the Rumsfeld approach: "It happens when it happens."

Al-Jazeera almost became the story

Why didn't they talk about all the other things which could be done?
Back on my terrorism is for the media theme. What organization provides the jihadis with a voice any time they want to convey something to the world at large, and I mean ANY time? Al-Jazeera of course. The only story they refused to air was Fabrizio Quattrocchi refusing beheading without a fight so the 'brave' jihadis had to shoot him.
Report: Bush Talked of Bombing Al-Jazeera

By ROBERT BARR, Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 9 minutes ago

LONDON - A civil servant has been charged under Britain's Official Secrets Act for allegedly leaking a government memo that a newspaper said Tuesday suggested that Prime Minister Tony Blair persuaded President Bush not to bomb the Arab satellite station Al-Jazeera.

The Daily Mirror reported that Bush spoke of targeting Al-Jazeera's headquarters in Doha, Qatar, when he met Blair at the White House on April 16, 2004. The Bush administration has regularly accused Al-Jazeera of being nothing more than a mouthpiece for anti-American sentiments.

The Daily Mirror attributed its information to unidentified sources. One source, said to be in the government, was quoted as saying that the alleged threat was "humorous, not serious," but the newspaper quoted another source as saying that "Bush was deadly serious, as was Blair."

Blair's office declined to comment on the report, stressing it never discusses leaked documents.

In Qatar, Al-Jazeera said it was aware of the report, but did not wish to comment. The U.S. Embassy in London said it was making no comment.

The document was described as a transcript of a conversation between the two leaders.

Cabinet Office civil servant David Keogh is accused of passing it to Leo O'Connor, who formerly worked for former British lawmaker Tony Clarke. Both Keogh and O'Connor are scheduled to appear at London's Bow Street Magistrates Court next week.

According to the Crown Prosecution Service, Keogh was charged with an offense under Section 3 of the Official Secrets Act relating to "a damaging disclosure" by a servant of the Crown of information relating to international relations or information obtained from a state other than the United Kingdom.

What is so infuriating about this story is there are so many ways to use Al-Jazeera. Their communications could be monitored as a way to find terrorists. The U.S. could always jam them without bombing them. Furthermore, it would be easy to plant disinformation on Al-Jazeera.

Bombing the studios, though justifiable, shows US and UK strategic planners could use some new blood. It would produce a firestorm of criticism from the usual suspects, ruin the possibility of using Al-Jazeera to get at terrorists, and seriously anger a nominal 'ally' in the Middle East. Among Muslim nations, Qatar isn't one of the pressing concerns. Bombing their TV station would certainly make it one.

Two morning cups of irony from the BBC

Iran calls for US exit from Iraq

You first, mullaht-head (actually an ayatoolah). If the Iranians weren't providing advanced shaped charges and thousands of 'insurgents' to Iraq this article wouldn't seem so ridiculous.
The ayatollah also told Jalal Talabani that the US was mainly responsible for widespread violence in Iraq.

"Please leave so we can stop attacking the people trying to rebuild Iraq and move on to the bloody civil war."

The Iranians have not only supplied Shia terrorists with weapons, but Baathists and al Qaeda types as well. Iran loves the instability.


Typical BBC spin on every disaster:

"Not enough aid, you stingy Americans. You can do better. Your government is too cheap (ignoring billions in private charity, but that's for another topic). Look at Luxembourg, their $50,000 beats your billions on a per capita basis. Capitalist Anglo-Saxon dogs!"

Never mind.

Stop with the aid already!

Aceh aid 'may cause over fishing'
By Rachel Harvey
BBC News, Jakarta

The number of boats being provided to tsunami survivors in Indonesia's Aceh province could lead to problems of over fishing, relief workers warn.

The waters off Aceh are rich fishing grounds, particularly for tuna which can fetch a high market price abroad.

But the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies says if local fleets become too big, fish stocks could be put at risk.

The one great thing about being an American is I know whatever I do is wrong. And the world press will be Johnny on the spot to tell me. It's a liberating feeling.

Monday, November 21, 2005

A Song For Europe

Link to lyricskeeper

Artist - Roxy Music
Album - Stranded
Lyrics - A Song For Europe


Here as I sit
At this empty cafe
Thinking of you
I remember
All those moments
Lost in wonder
That we'll never
Find again
Though the world
Is my oyster
It's only a shell
Full of memories
And here by the Seine
Notre-Dame casts
A long lonely shadow
Now - only sorrow
No tomorrow
There's no today for us
Nothing is there
For us to share
But yesterday
These cities may change
But there always remains
My obsession
Through silken waters
My gondola glides
And the bridge - it sighs ...
I remember
All those moments
Lost in wonder
That we'll never
Find again
There's no more time for us
Nothing is there
For us to share
But yesterdays
Ecce momenta
Illa mirabilia
Quae captabit
In aeternum
Modo dolores
Sunt in dies
Non est reliquum
Vero tantum
Tous ces moments
Perdus dans l'enchantement
Qui ne reviendront
Pas d'aujourd'hui pour nous
Pour nous il n'y a rien
A partager
Sauf le passe

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Spencer, Ye'or, Bostom, Warraq, Sina, Fallaci (and others) need to be heard

I posted part of this at LGF. Don't worry, it's not scary deja vu.
I'm concerned about the lack of any criticism of the theology of Islam in the public sphere. Even if you weren't raised Jewish or Christian there's a good chance you know basic scripture. Jews and Christians are accustomed to their belief systems and holy texts falling under intense scrutiny, and publicly.

On the other hand, Muslim theology is being intentionally ignored (at almost every level) or changed (by groups like CAIR) for American consumption. CAIR's Koran sounds like it's the settle-down-dhimmi version.

The same pattern seems to repeat if there isn't overt warfare. Muslims move in, settle down, seem to get along. A couple generations later they start taking the Koran seriously again, especially later suras like Nine, and protective service stock looks like the only good investment.

If you can't criticize Islam in the Netherlands, try to imagine what living in Saudi Arabia must be like.

In other words, 'point' writers like Bat Ye'or, Robert Spencer, Ibn Warraq, and Bostom should be required reading, and discussed in the public, before we all have to live in bunkers and drive armored vehicles.

If it's going to come to a head inevitably, better it happen before the population of true believers gets any larger.

Islam must be civilized, or civilization must be Islamicized. I'll take the former.

Importantly, the 'MESA Nostra' (Hugh Fitzgerald) must stop deflecting and obfuscating for Islam. Let the debates begin, before we all need personal bodyguards.

There are hundreds of brilliant texts written on Islam in the past which are out-of-print or discarded due to 'harsh' langugage ("hate speech" is a fantastic term for ending debate on certain subjects). It's time to dust them off and read them again.

CNN pumping up 'insurgents' with lead story

Triumphant news coverage is exactly what the terrorists want, and almost every news outlet is more than happy to give it to them. U.S. victories over terrorists come with provisos and fretting over the dead terrorists. "Were they civilians?" Well, since terrorists don't wear uniforms, hide among the civilian population, and never follow the rules of war, in a sense yes is always the answer.

Mid-war intelligence

SGT Walter J. Rausch and 1st Platoon
Charlie Co. 2/327 Infantry Regiment
101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)


Be my voice. I want this message heard. It is mine and my platoon's to the country. A man I know lost his legs the other night. He is in another company in our batallion. I can no longer be silent after watching the sacrifices made by Iraqis and Americans everyday. Send it to a congressman if you have to. Send it to FOX news if you have to. Let this message be heard please.

My fellow Americans,

I have a task for those with the courage and fortitude to take it. I have a message that needs not fall on deaf ears. A vision the blind need to see. I am not a political man nor one with great wisdom. I am just a soldier who finds himself helping rebuild a country that he helped liberate a couple years ago.

I have watched on television how the American public questions why their mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters are fighting and dying in a country 9000 miles away from their own soil. Take the word of a soldier, for that is all I am, that our cause is a noble one. The reason we are here is one worth fighting for. A cause that has been the most costly and sought after cause in our small span of existence on our little planet. Bought in blood and paid for by those brave enough to give the ultimate sacrifice to obtain it. A right that is given to every man, woman, and child I believe by God. I am talking of freedom.

Freedom. One word but yet countless words could never capture it's true meaning or power. "For those who have fought for it, freedom has a taste the protected will never know." I read that once and it couldn't be more true. It's not the average American's fault that he or she is "blind and deaf" to the taste of freedom. Most American's are born into their God given right so it is all they ever know. I was once one of them. I would even dare to say that it isn't surprising that they take for granted what they have had all their life. My experiences in the military however opened my eyes to the truth.

Ironically you will find the biggest outcries of opposition to our cause from those who have had no military experience and haven't had to fight for freedom. I challenge all of those who are daring enough to question such a noble cause to come here for just a month and see it first hand. I have a feeling that many voices would be silenced.

I watched Cindy Sheehan sit on the President's lawn and say that America isn't worth dying for. Later she corrected herself and said Iraq isn't worth dying for. She badmouthed all that her son had fought and died for. I bet he is rolling over in his grave.

Ladies and gentleman I ask you this. What if you lived in a country that wasn't free? What if someone told you when you could have heat, electricity, and water? What if you had no sewage systems so human waste flowed into the streets? What if someone would kill you for bad-mouthing your government? What if you weren't allowed to watch TV, connect to the internet, or have cell phones unless under extreme censorship? What if you couldn't put shoes on your child's feet? You need not to have a great understanding of the world but rather common sense to realize that it is our duty as HUMAN BEINGS to free the oppressed. If you lived that way would you not want someone to help you????

The Iraqi's pour into the streets to wave at us and when we liberated the cities during the war they gathered in the thousands to cheer, hug and kiss us. It was what the soldier's in WW2 experienced, yet no one questioned their cause!! Saddam was no better than Hitler! He tortured and killed thousands of innocent people. We are heroes over here, yet American's badmouth our President for having us here.

Every police station here has a dozen or more memorials for officers that were murdered trying to ensure that their people live free. These are husbands, fathers, and sons killed every day. What if it were your country? What would your choice be? Everything we fight for is worth the blood that may be shed. The media never reports the true HEROISM I witness everyday in the Iraqi's. Yes there are bad one's here, but I assure you they are a minuscule percent. Yet they are a number big enough to cause worry in this country's future.

I have watched brave souls give their all and lose thier lives and limbs for this cause. I will no longer stand silent and let the "deaf and blind" be the only voice shouting. Stonewall Jackson once said, "All that I have, all that I am is at the service of the country." For these brave souls who gave the ultimate sacrifice, including your son Cindy Sheehan, I will shout till I can no longer. These men and women are heroes. Their spirit lives on in their military and they will never be forgotten. They did not die in vain but rather for a cause that is larger than all of us.

My fellow countrymen and women, we are not overseas for our country alone but also another. We are here to spread democracy and freedom to those who KNOW the true taste of it because they fight for it everyday. You can see the desire in their eyes and I am honored to fight alongside them as an Infantryman in the 101st Airborne.

Freedom is not free, but yet it is everyone's right to have. Ironic isn't it? That is why we are here. Though you will always have the skeptics, I know that most of our military will agree with this message. PLease, at the request of this soldier spread this message to all you know. We are in Operation Iraqi Freedom and that is our goal. It is a cause that I and thousands of others stand ready to pay the ultimate sacrifice for because, Cindy Sheehan, freedom is worth dying for, no matter what country it is! And after the world is free only then can we hope to have peace.

Pre-war intelligence (1998 Iraq Liberation Act)

This is a bit like trying to find life on Mars, but I'll give it a try. Whatever is politically expedient at the moment is not virtuous or reality. Maybe if politicians keep telling themselves it will sink in.

Iraq Liberation Act (1998)

Forgive me for thinking Congress and President Clinton were serious about this.

Recall the Shia uprising which the GHWB Administration supported, but was snuffed out by Saddam's army using helicopters we forgot to include in the no-fly agreement. Saddam's earlier Anfal campaign, including the use of chemical weapons on the Kurds, sent a message to any group which might choose to oppose him. The message was: "I'll slaughter you, your family, babies, and your neighbors if you even think about stepping out of line." Our unwillingness to support the Shia after the Gulf War sent a message as well: "You're on your own. Try not to get slaughtered (again) when you take our advice."

The Iraqi Liberation Act of 1998 was the right idea at the right time, without any follow through. Who would act against Saddam without overt support from the United States, not mere paper pushed through Congress? It's disingenuous when Democrats forget this bit of legislation as if it's enshrouded in the mists of ancient history. The only course to end Saddam's tyrrany, ensure U.S. security, enforce UN resolutions, and prevent any futher aggressive wars by Saddam on his neighbors, was to act as George W. Bush did, with the support of Congress.

Have we forgotten Saddam raining SCUD missiles down on Saudi Arabia and Israel? Israeli babies with gas masks pressed to their faces by their terrified parents?

Is our national attention span so short? Don't answer that.

I can live with the decision decision to topple Saddam.

I can live. Some people can't.

Or we could have waited around for more UN study of the situation. How's this report coming along?

Some post-war (WWII) intelligence

UPDATE: Vice President Cheney mentioned the ILA in today's speech. (full text via White House)

Mark Steyn rules

Senate adopts 'exit strategy' from reality

November 20, 2005


If Mark Steyn was a pretty girl, and I wasn't married... Wait. That's not where I want to go with this. Just read the damn column.

Mark's caustic sarcasm hits every target with GPS-guided precision. God help me, but I do love it so.
A taste:
Good to see that even in the viciously partisan atmosphere of today's politics, Republicans and Democrats can still work together to carry out the people's business [naming buildings after themselves -- Chip]. In the same spirit, I wonder whether the Senate chamber itself should not be renamed the Abu Musab al-Zarqawi United States Senate. With increasingly rare exceptions, just about everything that emerges from the chamber tends to support the Zarqawi view of Iraq -- that this is a psychological war in which the Great Satan is an effete wimp who can be worn down and chased back to his La-Z-Boy recliner in Florida.

Last week, the Republican majority, to their disgrace and with 13 honorable exceptions, passed an amendment calling on the administration to lay out its "plan" for "ending" the war and withdrawing U.S. troops. They effectively signed on to the Democrat framing of the debate: that the only thing that matters is the so-called exit strategy. The only difference between Bill Frist's mushy Republicans and Harry Reid's shameless Democrats is that the latter want to put a firm date on withdrawal, so that Zarqawi's insurgents can schedule an especially big car bomb to coincide with the formal handover of the Great Satan's cojones.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Jews gone wild! Christians threatening again!

Politics and / of Religion is my gig. This is something I didn't see coming.

Abe Foxman of the ADL.
Foxman went on to explain that the ominous agenda of the Christianizers includes working to confirm conservative judicial nominees, restricting abortion and stopping gay marriage.

“They intend to Christianize all aspects of American life, from the halls of government to the libraries, to the movies, to recording studios, to the playing fields and locker rooms of professional, collegiate and amateur sports; from the military to SpongeBob SquarePants,” the ADL chief warned. Is Sponge Pants Jewish? Has he been slated for forced baptism?

Perhaps Foxman could turn his conspiracy theory into a documentary for cable television – “Christians Gone Wild.”

Reform Rabbi Yoffie joins the fray.

By KRISTEN HAYS, Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 55 minutes ago

HOUSTON - The leader of the largest branch of American Judaism blasted conservative religious activists in a speech Saturday, calling them "zealots" who claim a "monopoly on God" while promoting anti-gay policies akin to Adolf Hitler's.

Rabbi Eric Yoffie, president of the liberal Union for Reform Judaism, said "religious right" leaders believe "unless you attend my church, accept my God and study my sacred text you cannot be a moral person."

"What could be more bigoted than to claim that you have a monopoly on God?" he said during the movement's national assembly in Houston, which runs through Sunday.

The audience of 5,000 responded to the speech with enthusiastic applause.

Yoffie did not mention evangelical Christians directly, using the term "religious right" instead. In a separate interview, he said the phrase encompassed conservative activists of all faiths, including within the Jewish community.

He used particularly strong language to condemn conservative attitudes toward homosexuals. He said he understood that traditionalists have concluded gay marriage violates Scripture, but he said that did not justify denying legal protections to same-sex partners and their children.

"We cannot forget that when Hitler came to power in 1933, one of the first things that he did was ban gay organizations," Yoffie said. "Yes, we can disagree about gay marriage. But there is no excuse for hateful rhetoric that fuels the hellfires of anti-gay bigotry."

There are some people who will be thrilled by this war (and it's ugly) of words. I'm not one of them. This is a classic case of I report, you decypher.

The giant elephant in the room crapping on the floor is doing a happy dance.

Do employees of news outlets have souls?

The reason I ask is that terrorist acts are only effective when they get maximum news exposure. As I mentioned several posts ago, referencing Victor Davis Hanson, terrorism captures no ground and offers no alternatives to the status quo. Terrorism only scares people and affects public opinion.

As I look at Yahoo, CNN, BBC, Fox, or at any major news outlet, the lead story is the car bombing of a Shia funeral in Iraq and a car bombing which killed five brave American soldiers.

If news outlets want to stop terrorism they should run the body counts of terrorists killed in Iraq. If they want it to continue, don't change anything.

I wonder what Dante Alighieri would say about the mainstream media? Bottom circle, or slightly above?

OSM, notably, doesn't feature the carnage.

Correction: "take as long as is needed"

Please reference my last post.

I stand corrected. There is a poll on withdrawl from Iraq. The largest category says "take as long as is needed" - 38% followed by "within one year" 33%.

Perhaps it's time to do a poll on when our troops are coming home from Germany, Japan, former Yugoslavia, and South Korea.


Friday, November 18, 2005

Latest flog poll

You've heard about the USA Today / CNN / Gallup Poll from every major news outlet in the nation by now. I'm sure you're familiar with the 'fact' 63% of us want to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq. Polls are used to flog President Bush and supporters of the war mercilessly. (If bloggers are "assassins" - look down a few posts - MSM writers using polling data they like are "floggers.")

There are many ways to introduce bias into a poll. One is to use a small or unrepresentative sample. Wording the question can swing results wildly. Rephrasing the actual poll question for a news story is propaganda (and as it turns out is very relevant in this situation). Another is to survey anyone when it's more appropriate to survey registered voters. Geography is critical. A survey which relies on Berkeley, California will not match the results when polling Salt Lake City, Utah. Most importantly on political issues, the sample must reflect the partisan distribution in the entire population.

Or, you can just pick a number and call people. As it turns out, that's the 'scientific method' the USA Today / CNN / Gallup Poll relies on.
Polls listed chronologically. All data are from nationwide surveys of Americans 18 & older.

CNN/USA Today/Gallup Poll. Nov. 11-13, 2005. Adults nationwide.

"Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling the situation in Iraq?"
N=1,006, MoE ± 3

Approve / Disapprove / Unsure
35% / 63% / 2%

Wait a minute. This poll doesn't even address whether we should be in Iraq. The negative opinion could be people who want to put more troops in Iraq to invade Syria or Iran. Who knows? The "disapprove" is lumped into one category. Whether you are more or less hawkish than GWB, you are in the same category.

Sometimes what they don't tell you is more important than what they tell you. Look at the poll below the poll being used to claim Americans want to cut and run.

As it turns out, American opinion on a question more related to withdrawal has been remarkably stable for months. There is no question which directly addresses withdrawl. This is the closest they get. The worst result came in September when the "did not make a mistake" registered 39%.

"In view of the developments since we first sent our troops to Iraq, do you think the United States made a mistake in sending troops to Iraq, or not?"
Form A (N=491, MoE ± 5)

Made a Mistake / Did Not Make a Mistake / Unsure
54 / 45 / 1

Given the lack of any information regarding breakdown of party, geography, registered or not, and sample size (among other things) the nation is split right down the middle, even if you accept their margin of error (which I wouldn't).

Now consider the phrasing of the question.

"make a mistake in sending troops to Iraq."

What percentage of people will consider any mistake in the conduct of the war to be "a mistake in sending troops to Iraq"?

If even five percent are fooled by the wording of the question, the results reverse.

What does the phrase "in view of the developments since" do to the question?

It becomes a referendum on all the horrible mosque and car bombings, troop and civilian deaths.

Is the phrase necessary in the question if the issue is withdrawal? No.

This is the question without forcing the surveyed to consider recent bloodshed:
do you think the United States made a mistake in sending troops to Iraq

What if we remove the word "in." "In" suggests, again, looking at the conduct of the war, not the war itself.

do you think the United States made a mistake sending troops to Iraq

That's the real issue, approaching a question on withdrawal, though not reaching it, isn't it? Now ask yourself why the question is so wordy. Perhaps I've already answered it.

Next time you hear the phrase "war growing increasingly unpopular with the American public" over the next few days recall this is the polling data the mainstream media is using to reach that conclusion.

Damn floggers.

UPDATE: It has come to my attention that I can't spell withdrawal. Apparently I think it's a word describing someone who can't shake a southern accent.

As the HoR (House of Representatives) (see, whore) flings poo, Iran gives UN bomb part instructions

Iran's peaceful nuclear program in action
By Mark Heinrich and Francois Murphy
40 minutes ago

VIENNA (Reuters) - Iran has told the U.N. nuclear watchdog that it received a black-market document with partial instructions for making the core of a nuclear bomb, diplomats said on Friday.

But a senior official close to the International Atomic Energy Agency, some diplomats and a U.S. nuclear expert urged caution over the disclosure in the latest IAEA report on Iran's nuclear project, saying further investigation was needed.

"Iran's full transparency is indispensable and overdue," IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei said in his confidential report to the agency's board of governors, due to meet on November 24 to consider again whether to send Iran's case to the U.N. Security Council, which has the power to impose sanctions.

The report, obtained by Reuters, said the IAEA was given documents including one "on the casting and machining of enriched, natural and depleted uranium into hemispherical forms." One European diplomat described it as a "cookbook" for the enriched uranium core of a nuclear weapon.

But the senior official close to the U.N. nuclear agency said: "We are not taking a position as to what it (document) is. We are still in the assessment stage."

A diplomat close to the IAEA called the document "damaging" as it dealt with an important aspect of making an atomic weapon.

"But this is not the blueprint the Libyans had," he said, referring to a Chinese bomb design given to Tripoli before it renounced its weapons-of-mass destruction program in 2003.

A former U.N. weapons inspector, David Albright of the Institute for Science and International Security, said the document fell far short of a building manual for a bomb core.

"Iran has gone from saying it got nothing on this subject to (saying it got) a little bit," Albright said. "But the question remains: did Iran get more than it admitted to?"

Tehran told the IAEA the document had come to it unsolicited from people linked to the black market set up by disgraced Pakistani nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan -- a point officials close to IAEA said warranted further investigation.

"This (document) opens new concerns about weaponisation that Iran has failed to address," the U.S. ambassador to the IAEA, Gregory Schulte, said in a statement.

"This has to have a weapons use ... The only question is 'Did they go looking for this'? The Iranians say they didn't," said another Western diplomat.


No, it just appeared in their e-mail box between the prescription drug and penis spam, you moron.

Operation Roundup

Sometimes I get behind in posting links to interesting articles. Other times I end up with so many I need to dump them in one post. This is one of those times.

Victor Davis Hanson in City Journal discusses asymmetrical warfare and military history. The most important point to digest is terrorist attacks are designed to sway your opinion, not accomplish any traditional military objectives.

Our Special Universe
What's life all about? Science and religion both help us find answers.
(Opinion Journal)
Ironically, science proved not too long ago that part of our brain wants to have faith.

How to Mix Religion and Politics (TCS)
Personally, I do it in my blog title. Both are faith-based belief systems where certain people are elevated beyond mere human status.

Changing gears somewhat. Remember when scientists were more rational and less alarmist than the most end times of all religious leaders? Doesn't seem that long ago.

Two-thirds of world's resources 'used up'

Tim Radford, science editor
Wednesday March 30, 2005
The Guardian,

I guess it depends on how you define "resource." Or maybe they're just insane.

Just a reminder:

France Backs China on Taiwan
As far as I know the French still believe it's fine for Communist China to attack little democratic Taiwan.

There is no backing down in the Chinese missile threat to Taiwan. Since the French announcement, a Chinese general threatened to use nuclear weapons on the United States if we intervene in any China versus Taiwan conflict. The Chinese government was notably silent.

Of course the destabilizing and possibly genocidal French stance is based on their desire to break the European high-tech arms embargo on China. French foreign policy is always measured in currency.

If such conflict does occur, we should task one Trident submarine on France.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Profile in Courage

Ayaan Hirsi Ali (Dutch MP) (BBC)
Dutch MP to make gay Islam film

Ayaan Hirsi Ali is also planning a book written for Muslims
A Somali-born Dutch MP who collaborated on the film that led to the murder of director Theo van Gogh has written a sequel, about Islam's attitude to gays.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali received death threats after her work on Submission, a film about Islam's treatment of women.

Van Gogh was shot and stabbed by a Muslim radical, Mohammed Bouyeri, as he cycled through Amsterdam in 2004.

The film will use anonymous actors and carry no credits in an effort to protect those involved in the project.

Ms Ali told Dutch media that she had co-written the script with Van Gogh in the summer of 2004, months before he was killed last November.

"I examine the position of homosexuals in Islam in the film Submission II," she told the De Volkskrant newspaper.

"In the movie, they are called Allah's creatures," she added.

The MP is an outspoken critic of Islamic values and describes herself as a "lapsed" Muslim.


Mainstream Islamic thought treats Islam and homosexuality as incompatible, and hostility to homosexuals is widespread in many parts of the Muslim world.


Ayaan Hirsi Ali has already been threatened with death countless times. She cannot travel anywhere without armed guards. Let her courage be an example to all of us. If you really believe in freedom you should be willing to fight and die for it. I don't mean a kamikaze for freedom. Fighting takes many forms, including the battlefield of ideas.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

France burning, a new reality which isn't newsworthy?

We've been watching weeks of car, stadium, school, house, nursing home, and supermarket burnings. Due to the lack of coverage in the mainstream media you might assume France is peaceful. Not exactly. The new baseline is 150+ cars torched per night and a church burning. Perhaps someone with mathematical abilities could extrapolate this baseline out for a couple years and predict the future of the secular French Republic.

No Pasaran (main page):

The State of Emergency is prolonged for 3 months. Last night, 160 vehicles were torched, 40 arrests were made, and a church was partially destroyed by fire in Romans (Drome). The French are settling into a comfort zone of 150+ cars burned per night just to be able to say that this thing is over.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Open Source Media takes off!

Charles Johnson (Little Green Footballs), the pajama-clad Lizard who lives under the Denver Airport, heavily funded by Zionists and Freemasons, has provided me with a quote which deserves its own post. In National Review, referring to the launch of Open Source Media.
"This whole left-right thing kind of sprung out of the French Revolution," Johnson said. "And I don't want to define myself by the French."

Tee shirt vendors, take note.

From the second link:
By ANICK JESDANUN, AP Internet Writer
Tue Nov 15, 2:32 PM ET

NEW YORK - A media Web site scheduled to debut Wednesday will seek to blend traditional journalism with the freeform commentary developed through the emerging Web format known as blogs.

Some 70 Web journalists, including Instapundit's Glenn Reynolds and David Corn, Washington editor of the Nation magazine, have agreed to participate in OSM — short for Open Source Media.

OSM will link to individual blog postings and highlight the best contributions, chosen by OSM editors, in a special section. Bloggers will be paid undisclosed sums based on traffic they generate.

The ad-supported OSM site will also carry news feeds from Newstex, which in turn receives stories from The Associated Press, Knight-Ridder/Tribune News Service and other traditional media organizations.

"We're deliberately trying to do something new by affiliating blog and mainstream people," said Roger L. Simon, a blogger and the venture's co-founder.

According to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, about 9 percent of adult Internet users in the United States have created their own blogs, and about 25 percent read them. The audience tends to be more influential: blog postings can affect what news organizations cover or politicians discuss.

Many details of OSM remain unsettled. For example, OSM wants to create a mechanism for citizen journalists, including bloggers, to submit original news during natural disasters, civil unrest and other newsworthy events. Simon said organizers still have to come up with ways to check submissions for accuracy.

Initially, OSM will create blog-like discussion panels surrounding major news events, with three or four bloggers and non-blogging experts chosen to contribute.

Although Simon and co-founder Charles Johnson are often described as conservative, Simon said the site will transcend labels and include bloggers of all political leanings.

OSM was founded last year as Pajamas Media, a play on bloggers' ability to opine from home at all hours, day or night. It has raised $3.5 million from venture capitalists.


On the Net:

This might be one of those days people remember for a long time.

Where was I? Getting my cable modem replaced by a friendly Bright House employee. I'm ashamed of the Orlando politician who criticized our Puerto Rican immigrants. America, Florida, and Orlando will survive. Our new residents will tan better. And isn't that the point?

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Women and Islam (again)

I come back to this subject over and over. My hope is that someday the rights of women in Islam will be as important to American feminists as a rich woman someday teeing it up in Augusta, Georgia without going as the guest of a member.

Top ten rules in the Quran that oppress women

Raped Pakistani Woman Brings Fight to U.S.
By WILLIAM C. MANN, Associated Press Writer
Tue Nov 1,10:54 AM ET

WASHINGTON - In a quiet voice — almost a whisper — Mukhtar Mai spoke of her fight against a system back home in Pakistan that allowed a tribal council to deem it acceptable that four men could rape her to avenge their honor after her brother allegedly had sex with a woman above his class.

"I am fighting a fight against oppression, where women and the poor are oppressed ... by feudal lords," she said Monday night through an interpreter, reading from a prepared statement and addressing a group of human rights activists. "They have power and money, and all I have is you and your support. God willing, truth will have victory."


Mai allegedly was ordered raped in 2002 by a council of elders in Meerwala, her home village in eastern Punjab province, as punishment for her 13-year-old brother's alleged affair with a woman from a higher caste family. Mai and her family deny any affair ever took place and say the brother was in fact sexually assaulted by members of the other family.

In Pakistan, the method of restoring a family's honor by rape is commonplace. Often, the victim kills herself in shame.

Not Mai, 36. Her outcry drew international attention and brought the men who attacked her to the national courts of Pakistan.

A trial court in 2002 sentenced six men to death and acquitted eight others in Mai's rape. In March, the High Court in Punjab province acquitted five of the men and reduced the death sentence of the sixth to life in prison.

After an emotional appeal by Mai, the acquittals were overturned in June and the 13 men who had been released were rearrested. They remain in jail while Pakistan's Supreme Court considers the case.

Mai said she has no intention of leaving Pakistan, as did another woman who says she was forced out of the country after being raped by an army officer.

"I think that the fight can be fought only by living in Pakistan," she said. "You cannot fight by leaving."

Even coming to the United States posed a significant challenge. Mai had been invited by the U.S.-based women's rights group Asian-American Network Against Abuse of Women earlier this year to tell her story in the United States. But authorities confiscated her passport.

After officials in the United States and other countries strongly condemned the move, Islamabad rescinded the ban and returned her passport.

Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf, a strong ally of Washington, acknowledged that he had ordered the travel ban to prevent Mai from casting Pakistan in a bad light.