Monday, February 28, 2005
Also, I can't draw anything, let alone a cartoon. So may I suggest that someone more skilled in that area undertake the following:
Draw a cartoon with Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Rice pushing over a line of dominoes. The first domino Iraq is fully striking the second, Lebanon, which is tipping towards the third Syria and towards Iran. Add Palestine, Egypt and Saudi Arabia if you like.
At the other end of the tipping dominoes, have Osama bin Laden, Jaques Chirac, Kofi Annan and Ted Kennedy cowering as the imminent last domino is headed their way.
Election Shock Treatment: "Liberals are always hot for democracy once the struggles are over: It's in the struggles themselves they slip up. If the candidates favored by Brown and by Hertzberg--Carter and Mondale over Reagan; Michael Dukakis over George Bush the Elder, and Al Gore and John Kerry over George Bush the son--had been in power in moments of crisis, democracy would hardly now be on the march, the Berlin Wall would most likely be standing; the Sandinistas and other Communists might well still be spreading terror in Central America; Saddam Hussein would not only be in Iraq but in Kuwait and perhaps Saudi Arabia; and those brave happy voters would still be suffering under a vicious and sadistic tyranny.
Claiming credit in retrospect for things you opposed at the time is a new high in chutzpah, or, if not that, in delusion. But delusion is what people retreat to when reality is much too traumatic. 'Here's the great fear that I have,' said comedian Jon Stewart once the Iraq elections were over. 'What if Bush, the president, ours, has been right about this all along? I feel that my world view may not sustain itself, and I may, and again I don't know if I can physically do this, implode.' Why does one feel that he speaks for the Browns, and the Hertzbergs, and beyond them, for millions of others? 'We wait to see if Democrats can find a way to talk about the Iraqi elections that isn't madness personified,' The Note, the political newsletter of ABC News, said after two weeks of this madness. And so do we all."
Just see Senator Kennedy's rather ill-timed speech from last month which echoed much of this folderol if you need a refresher.
Well the Arab street is speaking and the shout is for FREEDOM! Previously, I quoted Walid Jumblat, the Lebanese Druze leader who credited President Bush's Iraq policy for the turnaround. That sentiment is now spreading in ever more visible form throughout the region faster than anyone would have thought possible.
I refer frequently to President Bush's Iraq policy as a "keystone strategy" to unlock the democratic and peaceful potential of the entire region and thus achieve for us a great victory in our wider war on terror. Others call this a domino effect and remind us of the wave of freedom President Reagan unleashed through his strong stand against Soviet tyranny.
It's likely to be a bumpy road ahead, with disappointments and tragedy the handmaiden of success. But if you recall, there were people concerned that the fall of the Berlin Wall would lead to disaster. Wrong then! Wrong now!
Here's what others have been saying the past few days:
A Mideast Makeover? (washingtonpost.com): "As thousands of Arabs demonstrated for freedom and democracy in Beirut and Cairo last week, and the desperate dictators of Syria and Egypt squirmed under domestic and international pressure, it was hard not to wonder whether the regional transformation that the Bush administration hoped would be touched off by its invasion of Iraq is, however tentatively, beginning to happen.
Those who have declared the war an irretrievable catastrophe have been gloating for at least a year over the supposed puncturing of what they portray as President Bush's fanciful illusion that democracy would take root in Iraq and spread through the region. They may yet be proved right. But how, then, to explain the tens of thousands who marched through Beirut last Monday carrying red and white roses and scarves -- the colors of what they call the 'independence intifada' -- and calling for 'freedom, independence and sovereignty' from neighboring Syria? Or the hundreds of Egyptian protesters who gathered that same day at Cairo University, in defiance of thousands of police officers, to chant the slogan of 'kifaya,' or 'enough,' at 76-year-old President Hosni Mubarak? "
Minds Are Changing By Michael Barone
Nearly two years ago, I wrote that the liberation of Iraq was changing minds in the Middle East. Before March 2003, the authoritarian regimes and media elites of the Middle East focused the discontents of their people on the United States and Israel. I thought the downfall of Saddam Hussein's regime was directing their minds to a different question -- how to build a decent government and a decent society.
I think I overestimated how much progress was being made at the time. But the spectacle of 8 million Iraqis braving terrorists to vote on Jan. 30 seems to have moved things up to be changing minds now at breakneck speed.
Evidence abounds. Consider what is happening in Lebanon, long under Syrian control, in response to the assassination, almost certainly by Syrian agents, of former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri. Protesters have taken to the streets day after day, demanding Syrian withdrawal.
The Tipping Points By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
he other night on ABC's "Nightline," the host, Ted Koppel, posed an intriguing question to Malcolm Gladwell, the social scientist who wrote the path-breaking book "The Tipping Point," which is about how changes in behavior or perception can reach a critical mass and then suddenly create a whole new reality. Mr. Koppel asked: Can you know you are in the middle of a tipping point, or is it only something you can see in retrospect?
Mr. Gladwell responded that "the most important thing in trying to analyze whether something is at the verge of a tipping point, is whether it - an event - causes people to reframe an issue.
Mr. Koppel was raising the question because he wanted to explore whether the Iraqi elections marked a tipping point in history. I was on the same show, and in mulling over this question more I think that what's so interesting about the Middle East today is that we're actually witnessing three tipping points at once.
Thanks to eight million Iraqis defying "you vote, you die" terrorist threats, Iraq has been reframed from a story about Iraqi "insurgents" trying to liberate their country from American occupiers and their Iraqi "stooges" to a story of the overwhelming Iraqi majority trying to build a democracy, with U.S. help, against the wishes of Iraqi Baathist-fascists and jihadists.
In Lebanon, the murder of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which Syria is widely suspected of having had a hand in, has reframed that drama. A month ago, Lebanon was the story of a tiny Christian minority trying to resist the Syrian occupation, which had the tacit support of the pro-Syrian Lebanese government and a cadre of Lebanese politicians who had sold their souls to Damascus. After the Hariri murder, Lebanese just snapped. Lebanon became the story of a broad majority of Lebanese Christians, Muslims and Druse no longer willing to remain silent, but instead telling the Syrians, and their Lebanese puppet president, to "go home." Lebanon went from a country where few dared whisper "When will Syria leave?" to a country where nearly everyone was shouting it, and Syria was having to answer.
The Israel-Palestine drama has gone from how Ariel Sharon will use any means possible to sustain Israel's hold on Gaza, which he once said was indispensable for the security of the Jewish state, to being about how Mr. Sharon will use any means possible to evacuate Gaza - with its huge Palestinian population - which he now says is necessary for saving Israel as a Jewish state. The issue for the Palestinians is no longer about how they resist the Israeli occupation in Gaza, but whether they build a decent mini-state there - a Dubai on the Mediterranean. Because if they do, it will fundamentally reshape the Israeli debate about whether the Palestinians can be handed most of the West Bank.
Jack Kelly: All but won
The media can't see that Iraq is close to secure
It will be some months before the news media recognize it, and a few months more before they acknowledge it, but the war in Iraq is all but won. The situation is roughly analogous to the battle of Iwo Jima, which took place 60 years ago this month. It took 35 days before the island was declared secure, but the outcome was clear after day five, with the capture of Mt. Suribachi.
Proof of this was provided by Sen. Hillary Clinton. Iraq is functioning quite well, she said in a press conference in Baghdad Feb. 19. The recent rash of suicide attacks is a sign the insurgency is failing, she said.
"When politicians like [Clinton] start flocking to Iraq to bask in the light of its success, then you know that the corner has been turned," a reader of his blog wrote to Bay.
More substantive signs abound. The performance of Iraqi security forces is improving, as are their numbers. Nearly 10,000 men showed up at a southern Iraqi military base Feb. 14 to volunteer for 5,000 openings. Only 6,000 had been expected.
Sunni Arab politicians have admitted they made a big boo-boo in boycotting the Jan. 30 election, and are pleading to be included in the political process. Some ex-Baathists are seeking terms for laying down their arms.
Those who get their news from the "mainstream" media are surprised by developments in Iraq, as they were surprised by our swift victory in Afghanistan, the sudden fall of Saddam Hussein, the success of the Afghan election and the success of the Iraqi election.
Journalists demand accountability from political leaders for "quagmires" which exist chiefly in the imagination of journalists. But when will journalists be held to account for getting every major development in the war on terror wrong?
Friday, February 25, 2005
Well I guess we learn the hard way. Whether it's "for the children" or "saving the Whales" there's usually more to it than that.
Before you accept on face value whatever face of reason one of these groups presents, consider the source. How is it funded, who do they work with on issues. The following web site can do just that:.
It has an exhaustive database of left wing groups and their connections and funding sources along with articles describing their activities. David Horowitz, himself a recovering leftist is the prime unmasker.
The databse features a nifty graphical database. For example, I wanted more information about the "Children's Defense Fund" so looked them up in the list of groups and a page describing the group pops up. But I didn't stop there. A feature called "Visual Map" opens an interactive graphic display of all the groups that have either funded or worked with the CDF. Now I'm not sure about you, but I wonder what abortion rights groups would have to do with children? Or how about anti-Israel Palestinian and other Arab groups?
Click on each of those links to "follow the money." Fun AND informative.
Thursday, February 24, 2005
The plan was an attempt to address historical injustice and be more â€œfair.â€� Also, it was thought that promoting diversity of previously excluded viewpoints represented by these same minorities and women would invigorate organizations with a fresh perspective on all aspects of the organizationâ€™s affairs.
O.K. Iâ€™ll buy that. But itâ€™s time to take the notion of â€œdiversityâ€� one step further. In a number of taxpayer supported institutions, most notably higher education and media supported outlets like the Public Broadcast System and National Public Radio, it wasnâ€™t enough to add some faces of color and feminine gender around the table.
Diversity and fairness were used as code to sanction, with tax payer dollars, a fresh cadre not of varied ideas and approaches, but left wing orthodoxy.
Is there anyone who could seriously suggest that tenured college professors, in the non-science area particularly, are NOT overwhelmingly liberal? Is it possible to conceive that taxpayer supported media outlets like PBS and NPR do not hire almost exclusively liberal reporters, producers and editors?
If the premise espoused by advocates of diversity is to be fairly applied, then itâ€™s time to correct this inequity. Shouldnâ€™t conservatives have the same right to compete for tax dollars as liberals?
Now, I understand that actually insisting on equality in funding is going to upset some who have grown comfortable with the notion that their point of view somehow entitles them to greater access to taxpayer resources than conservatives. But I think weâ€™ve overlooked this problem for too long and I am concerned that it contributes to divisions in our society.
Implementing such a program of fairness and diversity wonâ€™t be any easier than the first affirmative action programs were. There would likely be many persons displaced when the organization they represent is required to find places for conservatives in order to continue receiving federal funds and access to government contracts. However, Iâ€™m sure our more than generous unemployment benefits and federal worker retraining programs could be fine tuned to help them transition to other economic opportunities.
As I saidâ€¦ Iâ€™m all for fairness and diversityâ€¦ Letâ€™s just have MORE of it!
Beirut's Berlin Wall (washingtonpost.com): "Over by the Martyr's Monument, Lebanese students have built a little tent city and are vowing to stay until Syria's 15,000 troops withdraw. They talk like characters in 'Les Miserables,' but their revolutionary bravado is the sort of force that can change history. 'We have nothing to lose anymore. We want freedom or death,' says Indra Hage, a young Lebanese Christian. 'We're going to stay here, even if soldiers attack us,' says Hadi Abi Almouna, a Druze Muslim. 'Freedom needs sacrifices, and we are ready to give them.'
Brave words, in a country where dissent has often meant death. 'It is the beginning of a new Arab revolution,' argues Samir Franjieh, one of the organizers of the opposition. 'It's the first time a whole Arab society is seeking change -- Christians and Muslims, men and women, rich and poor.'
The leader of this Lebanese intifada is Walid Jumblatt, the patriarch of the Druze Muslim community and, until recently, a man who accommodated Syria's occupation. But something snapped for Jumblatt last year, when the Syrians overruled the Lebanese constitution and forced the reelection of their front man in Lebanon, President Emile Lahoud.
Over the years, I've often heard him denouncing the United States and Israel, but these days, in the aftermath of Hariri's death, he's sounding almost like a neoconservative. He says he's determined to defy the Syrians until their troops leave Lebanon and the Lahoud government is replaced.
"It's strange for me to say it, but this process of change has started because of the American invasion of Iraq," explains Jumblatt. "I was cynical about Iraq. But when I saw the Iraqi people voting three weeks ago, 8 million of them, it was the start of a new Arab world." Jumblatt says this spark of democratic revolt is spreading. "The Syrian people, the Egyptian people, all say that something is changing. The Berlin Wall has fallen. We can see it."
Wednesday, February 23, 2005
One of the quieter ways that Bush Administration diplomacy has been working is in consultation with Japan. You remember the Japanese? Attacked us at Pearl Harbor, swore unremitting war and death on us until we defeated them, occupied their country and imposed a constitution on them requiring democracy?
They are now of course one of our closest friends and one of the worlds great economic powers.
February 20th in Washington, D.C. Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Japan's Minister for Foreign Affairs Nobutaka Machimura and Minister of State for Defense and Director-General of the Defense Agency Yoshinori Ohno
met to declare a U.S.-Japan agreement on "common strategic objectives."
Among the objectives listed were:
- Promote fundamental values such as basic human rights, democracy, and the rule of law in the international community.
- Encourage the peaceful resolution of issues concerning the Taiwan Strait through dialogue.
- Encourage China to improve transparency of its military affairs.
- Support peaceful unification of the Korean Peninsula
Read the full statement here:e-Government Website/Homapage
The next time some ignorant, brain washed leftie starts spouting about how everyone in the world is against us, just sit them down, give them some herbal tea and tell them that not every nation in the world who IS our friend needs as much public ass kissing as the FRENCH!
Furthermore, would any of this be happening if John Kerry were Presdident? HA!
Tuesday, February 22, 2005
Logic Times: "How many civilians have died since the onset of the war in Iraq? There are varying reports, but the consensus appears to be between 3,000 and 18,000 people. An excellent argument can be made that these numbers are wildly inflated (the ratio of men to women killed in these supposedly random collateral events is a curious 10:1), however, for the purpose of debate, let us grant this claim and assign validity to the running tally kept on iraqbodycount.net.
What conclusion can one draw from this? That these activists are pacifists, people of conscience opposed to all military conflict? That these protestors are overwhelmed by the unique suffering and death caused by modern American imperialism? Or that these are decent people, simply horrified by man's inhumanity to man?
There certainly are a few classic pacifists sprinkled into this or any anti-war movement, but they are the rare exception rather than the rule. The evidence supports only one conclusion: it is not the death and suffering of innocents that is objectionable to these protestors, only the death and suffering caused by American policy. These people protest America, not war.
Saddam Hussein became president of Iraq on July 16, 1979 and was deposed in April of 2003. Over that twenty-four year period, Saddam Hussein killed between 600,000 and 1,000,000 Iraqis and was responsible for the deaths of over 700,000 Iranians and Kuwaitis (here and here). Utilizing only the Iraqi numbers, this is an average of between 25,260 and 42,108 people a year, or between 2105 and 3509 Iraqi citizens a month. The United States toppled Saddam Hussein twenty-two months ago now. If Saddam had remained in power for those 22 months, between 46,310 and 78,198 Iraqis would have died ï¿½ chilchildren starved in prisons, dissidents fed through industrial shredders, women strangled after visits to rape rooms all to be eventually reunited in remote mass graves. Using the maximum credible figures available:
77,198 Iraqi civilians that would have died were Saddam still in power
-15,612 Iraqi civilians that have died since Saddam was deposed
61,586 Iraqi civilians that the American military and President Bush have saved
The protestors above are indicted by their selective regard for death in our world and Iraq in particular. Those wielding signs did not stir themselves as Saddam harvested the boldest and brightest of Iraq for 24 years. The plight of the Sudanese or those in East Timor is met with general disinterest. Apparently one Iraqi child inadvertently killed by American soldiers risking life and limb to bring liberty to an oppressed people is more horrifying that hundreds of Sudanese children liquidated in Darfur.
The anti-war movement views Iraqi civilians deaths as grist for the anti-American mill. Dead Sudanese are a statistic. Dead Iraqis before the war are a memory. Dead civilians in Iraq today are an exhilarating opportunity for the socialist left to undermine American liberty, power and society. This fuzzy math cannot stand. Logic Times will keep, from this day forward, the Iraq Survival Count.
The fruits of staying the course with our Iraq policy may finally begin to bear some fruit throughout the region. With the Lebanese people themselves demanding an end to Syrian occupation and political pressure mounting on both Syria and Iran, the dominoes are beginning to fall.
Visit just about any of the clandestine Iranian web sites where every word President Bush and Secretary of State Rice utter on freedom is reported and passed on to generations weary of theocratic rule.
The political pressure which may be our best weapon for change would NOT have been possible without the clear demonstration of our commitment to use military power in Iraq.
Thanks to Neognostikos for pointing me to Ledeen's article.
Michael Ledeen on Democracy on National Review Online: Has there ever been a more dramatic moment than this one? The Middle East is boiling, as the failed tyrants scramble to come to terms with the political tsunami unleashed on Afghanistan and Iraq. The power of democratic revolution can be seen in every country in the region. Even the Saudi royal family has had to stage a farcical 'election.' But this first halting step has fooled no one. Only males could vote, no political parties were permitted, and only the Wahhabi establishment was permitted to organize.
This glorious victory is due in large part to the truly heroic performance of our armed forces, most recently in that great turning point, the battle of Fallujah. Our victory in Fallujah has had enormous consequences, first of all because the information we gathered there has made it possible to capture or kill considerable numbers of terrorists and their leaders. It also sent a chill through the spinal column of the terror network, because it exposed the lie at the heart of their global recruitment campaign. As captured terrorists have told the region on Iraqi television and radio, they signed up for jihad because they had been told that the anti-American crusade in Iraq was a great success, and they wanted to participate in the slaughter of the Jews, crusaders, and infidels. But when they got to Iraq and discovered that the terrorist leaders immediately confiscated their travel documents so that they could not escape their terrible destiny they saw that the opposite was true. The slaughter of which Fallujah was the inescapable proof was that of the jihadists at the hands of the joint coalition and Iraqi forces.
It would be an error of enormous proportions if, on the verge of a revolutionary transformation of the Middle East, we backed away from this historic mission. It would be doubly tragic if we did it because of one of two possible failures of vision: insisting on focusing on Iraq alone, and viewing military power as the prime element in our revolutionary strategy. Revolution often comes from the barrel of a gun, but not always. Having demonstrated our military might, we must now employ our political artillery against the surviving terror masters. The great political battlefield in the Middle East is, as it has been all along, Iran, the mother of modern terrorism, the creator of Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad, and the prime mover of Hamas. When the murderous mullahs fall in Tehran, the terror network will splinter into its component parts, and the jihadist doctrine will be exposed as the embodiment of failed lies and misguided messianism.
The instrument of their destruction is democratic revolution, not war, and the first salvo in the political battle of Iran is national referendum. Let the Iranian people express their desires in the simplest way possible: "Do you want an Islamic republic?" Send Lech Walesa and Vaclav Havel to supervise the vote. Let the contending parties compete openly and freely, let newspapers publish, let radios and televisions broadcast, fully supported by the free nations. If the mullahs accept this gauntlet, I have every confidence that Iran will be on the path to freedom within months. If, fearing a massive rejection from their own people, the tyrants of Tehran reject a free referendum and reassert their repression, then the free nations will know it is time to deploy the full panoply of pressure to enable the Iranians to gain their freedom.
The time is now. Faster, please.
Demonstrating the unity of this Christian and Moslem nation, a Lebanese man holding a crucifix in one hand and the Quran in the other protests for an end to Syrian occupation of his country. Pictures of slain former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri flank him on either side. Can this be the next domino in the Bush strategy to bring democracy to the Middle East?
Friday, February 18, 2005
Well.... here's an update: Rep. Sanchez (D-CA) trying to get the better of our Defense Secretary:
Transcript: Rumsfeld Testifies Before House Panel (washingtonpost.com): "SANCHEZ: I have Petraeus' numbers. They're different than your numbers, by the way.
RUMSFELD: Well, what's the date? They aren't different because these came from Petraeus. He may have two sets of numbers, but they are not different if the date's the same.
The date on my paper here is February 14th. What's yours?
SANCHEZ: December 20th.
RUMSFELD: Not surprising there's a difference. "
Not that this obvious ploy to embarrass Secretary Rumsfeld or President Bush will make the slightest difference to the "Hate America" crowd. They've gone so far off the deep end of reality that it's no longer a red state/blue state thing. Some of these folks are on another planet altogether. Maybe President Bush's support of a prescription drug benefit isn't such a bad idea.
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
Their last gasp was to attack the reporter for Talon News who tossed President Bush a softball at the last press conference. First they attacked him as being a "fake" reporter and using a nom de plume (pen name) . They went on in the darker recesses of lefty caves, chat rooms and coffee houses to smear him far worse.
If they get their way on this, we can expect that we will be treated to more of the slanted questioning the left favors, such as the "reporter" who repeatedly asked President Bush at a news conference last year if he had made "mistakes." They practically gave that guy a Pulitizer.
Apparently, the only good bias is left wing bias and smear.
Inside Politics - The Washington Times: Inside Politics - February 15, 2005: "Leaders of the White House Correspondents' Association plan to meet with President Bush's press secretary today to discuss tightening the White House press-credentialing process, Editor & Publisher magazine reports at its Web site (www.editorandpublisher.com).
The meeting follows the recent uproar over James Guckert, a former White House reporter for the Republican-linked Talon News, who had used the name Jeff Gannon and drawn fire for criticizing Democrats as part of a question to Mr. Bush.
Among the potential changes to the credentialing system: tighter restrictions on who can receive daily press passes, such as those Mr. Guckert obtained, and a more active role by the WHCA in approving requests for credentials, which are now handed out solely by the White House Press Office, reporter Joe Strupp writes. "
Sunday, February 13, 2005
Thus far, the Democrat's hate strategy has seen their numbers decline in both the house and the Senate over two consecutive elections. That same strategy caused the middle ground of the American electorate to walk away in disgust this past presidential election.
Shortly after the election, Democrats insisted that President Bush needed to "reach out" and be more bipartisan. While the President no doubt understands the biblical admonition in Matthew 5:43-48 "love those who hate you" I'm not sure that extends to embracing the political agenda of the haters.
Saturday, February 12, 2005
A take off on "Can the leopard change his spots" in the Economist. The article suggests that Democrats want to emulate the success of the Gingrich revolution in the early 90's by going even more hardcore in obstructing President Bush's agenda. The article goes on to point out that the difference is that Newt actually HAD alternatives to Clinton proposals and buckets of new ideas. One thing the article failed to point out is that Newt and the GOP actually worked WITH Clinton on NAFTA, welfare reform and national security topics.
I've got nothing against privately funded art.. even if my personal opinion of "The Gates" by that whacky Christo bunch looks more like barriers for a highway construction project. But I seem to recall a bunch of whining about the privately funded festivities at President Bush' second inuaugural (cheaper still than Clinton's second). I just wonder if some of the same whiners who boo-hooed about the party in Washington were among the artsy crowd who showed up to coo at this "marvel." Wouldn't the $20 million for this "art" buy alot of vaccines, clothes and blankets for Tsunami victims?
Wednesday, February 09, 2005
To stop Hillary, draft Condi: "To stop Hillary, draft Condi
As she tours the continent after her Senate confirmation, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is like a rock star her every movement, her every meeting covered by an adoring media.
America's first black female secretary of state is doing in public what she has always done in private speaking frankly about America's priorities and the realities of the post-Cold War world. As she jokes with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, loosening up his dogmatic anti-American policies, lectures Russia about freedom and warns Israel of tough decisions ahead, one thing is obvious: A star is being born.
Traveling without the entourage customary for secretaries of state, on time, mapping out in advance her first six months of travel, Rice is a new force in American politics.
As the Republican Party casts about for a viable presidential candidate in 2008 to keep Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) out of the White House, attention will inevitably focus on Rice, the woman who may stand between Clinton and the presidency.
Since Bush's success in Iraq has laid the basis for negotiation in the Middle East, there is every prospect that Rice may preside over a diplomatic triumph in catalyzing the discussions between Sharon and Abbas. The firm American stand in Iraq will also make more likely success in Korea and Iran, all of which would add to the prestige of Rice.
The political fact is that a Rice candidacy would destroy the electoral chances of the Democratic Party by undermining its demographic base. John Kerry got 54 percent of his vote from three groups that, together, account for about a third of the American electorate: African-Americans, Hispanics and single white women. Rice would cut deeply into any Democrat's margin among these three groups and would, most especially, deny Clinton the strong support she would otherwise receive from each of them.
Stamp your approval of the Reagan Revolution with this stamp honoring the late President... Just hope you post office actually HAS the stamp...
Thursday, February 03, 2005
"One of Iraq's leading democracy and human rights advocates is Safia Taleb al-Suhail. She says of her country: "We were occupied for 35 years by Saddam Hussein. That was the real occupation. Thank you to the American people who paid the cost but most of all to the soldiers." Eleven years ago, Safia's father was assassinated by Saddam's intelligence service. Three days ago in Baghdad, Safia was finally able to vote for the leaders of her country. And we are honored that she is with us tonight.
One name we honor is Marine Corps Sgt. Byron Norwood of Pflugerville, Tex., who was killed during the assault on Falluja. His mom, Janet, sent me a letter and told me how much Byron loved being a Marine, and how proud he was to be on the front line against terror. She wrote: "When Byron was home the last time, I said that I wanted to protect him like I had since he was born. He just hugged me and said: 'You've done your job, Mom. Now it's my turn to protect you.' "
Ladies and gentlemen, with grateful hearts, we honor freedom's defenders and our military families represented here this evening by Sergeant Norwood's mom and dad, Janet and Bill Norwood."
No Greater Love: First Lady Laura Bush (right) looks on as while her guest Safia Taleb al-Souhail comforts Janet Norwood (C), whose son, Marine Corps Sergeant Byron Norwood of Pflugerville, Texas was killed during the assault on Fallujah, as the Marine was honored during U.S. President George W. Bush's State of The Union address.
Wednesday, February 02, 2005
The following is a contribution found on:Razor Sharp Claws Not to be confused in any way with the author of said Blog: "Listening to George Bush give his inauguration speech, all I can think of are the thousands of people who are dead because of us; because our Congress failed in its duty to control the abuse of our military, because our people allowed fear to overwhelm intelligence, and because our president put greed and personal agendas over life and right.
Now we are going to kill hundreds more in order to hold an event that will resolve nothing. The upcoming election in Iraq is poorly timed and unwise. It will be meaningless and without value to everyone except the Bush administration, which is thoughtlessly driving it and the insurgents who will use it as a focal point for violence and death.
To the families and individuals who will die for this sorry and ill-conceived sham of democracy, I can only say I am sorry. For all our sakes, am very sorry."
People like this should be packed off to North Korea.
Next time you hear Jesse Jackson whine about "the long lines" at Ohio polling places during the 2004 presidential election, think back to this firsthand account of voting in Iraq:
Iraqi Bloggers Central: "I entered the school and the supervisors showed me the way to were I should vote. They and the ING guys were so polite and gentle. I cast my vote and got out, not in a rush at all. This is my Eid and I felt like a king walking in his own kingdom. I saw the same look of confidence and satisfaction in the eyes of all people I met. As I left one of the guards said to me as he handed me back my cellular phone,'God bless you and your beloved ones. We don't know how to thank you. Please excuse any inconvenience on our part. We wish we didn't have to search you or limit your freedom. You are heroes' I was struck with surprise and felt ashamed. This man was risking his life all these hours in what has become the utmost target for all terrorists in Iraq and yet he's apologizing and calling us heroes. I thanked him back and told him that he and his comrades are the true heroes and that we can never be grateful enough for their services."
Tuesday, February 01, 2005
A free Iraq, stepping slowly, even painfully towards some form of democracy is the keystone of a policy that can bring about positive change for the entire region and foster conditions leading to our ultimate victory in the war on terror.
No amount of Democrat sponsored denial will change that.
USATODAY.com - New kind of awe in the Mideast: " Regardless of its flaws and how it came about, Iraq's first free election in half a century is a historic event. Among other things, it has given quite a boost to a liberation process underway in the greater Middle East, sending tremors through both ruled and rulers.
Strange how one day's event can touch so many, even those outside Iraq. But it did not come from nowhere. To autocratic regional despots, the rush to vote by millions of trapped, terrorized and occupied Iraqis was a closure to tired arguments. The despots have never held an honest-to-God election, and now this embarrassing model sits there, across the border, in a major Arab nation.
In one fell swoop, this upset has brought to a halt years of despots' arrogant posturing toward Iraqis or hiding of domestic shortcomings behind missteps of the Americans and Israelis in Iraq and Palestine. Iraqis today stand like a phoenix amid the rubble of mediocre governance and corrupt autocracies.
As for the ruled, what can be gleaned from a quick harvest of views are early signs of separating profound dislikes of President Bush and his Middle East policies from the man's ability to deliver to their Iraqi Arab brethren a home run on human rights. It's like damn G.W. Bush, but, with a wink, also long live G.W. Bush.
Thanks to intensive satellite coverage aimed at a television-driven culture, some 200 million Arabs watched at homes, clubs and coffee shops, aghast at how wrong they may have gotten some of the Iraq equation. American occupation or not, their Iraqi brethren left no doubt that they were thrilled. They flocked to voting stations in Basra, Mosul and Baghdad and to polling centers set up abroad for expatriate Iraqis in Syria, Jordan and Iran to choose a government.
In interview after interview, Iraqis said such things as, "It is like a wedding ... It is a great day ... This is history."
Or did you momentarily feel an onrush of disappointment because you knew, you just knew, that this was going to redound to the credit of George W. Bush? This means you, Michael Moore. I'm talking to you, Teddy Kennedy.
And not just to the two of you, but to all those who follow in your train.
There are literally millions of Americans who are unhappy today because millions of Iraqis went to the polls yesterday. And why? Because this isn't just a success for Bush. It's a huge win. It's a colossal vindication.
It's a big fat gigantic winning vindication of the guy that the Moores and Kennedys and millions of others still can't believe anybody voted for.
And they know it.
Yesterday was a day for Democrats and opponents of George W. Bush to swallow their bile and retract their claws and join just for a moment in celebration of an amazing and thrilling human drama in a land that has seen more than its share of thrilling human drama over the past 5,000 years.
But you just couldn't do it, could you?
'My father helped bring this election today,' said Farezdak Abdel Nibi, 34, at a whitewashed concrete school building serving as a polling station.
When Nibi was 20, he and his father were eating breakfast when Iraqi security officials burst in and took them away, he said. Their arrest came during a large roundup of Shiites by Hussein's security apparatus. Nibi and his father, speechless in fear, were taken to a police station. Nibi said he was held for 15 days. The last time his father was seen alive was three years later. After that, there was no news about what happened to him, Nibi said.
'We kept our hope that he had survived. But when we saw all the mass graves Saddam had made, I knew that we had lost him,' Nibi said.
'This election is the fruit of every drop of blood that was shed in 1991,' Nibi said, referring to a Shiite uprising following the Persian Gulf War that was brutally suppressed by Hussein's forces. 'I thank my father. He had three sons who married. None of us had a wedding party, out of respect for him. Today, we can celebrate. Today, we will have a wedding party.'"
Appeasement cost millions of Jews and non-Jews their lives as England and France, allies at the time, negotiated and hesitated too long before they noticed that Hitler had to be fought, not bound to agreements. Appeasement stabilized communism in the Soviet Union and East Germany in that part of Europe where inhuman, suppressive governments were glorified as the ideologically correct alternative to all other possibilities. Appeasement crippled Europe when genocide ran rampant in Kosovo and we Europeans debated and debated until the Americans came in and did our work for us. "