These are all the Blogs posted on Saturday, 11, 2010.
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Clichés are the end of civilisation as we know it. End of.
Posted on 12/11/2010 7:57 AM by Mary Jackson
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Kurds Not About To Give Up What They Have Won
From International Business Times:
December 11, 2010
Kurd leaders in Iraq seek 'right to self-determination'
By SreeRam Banda
Iraq's top Kurdish leader Massud Barzani, on Saturday, has called for the 'right to self-determination' of the northern Iraqi region. The move could reinforce the demand for total independence to Kurdistan, which has already been accorded autonomy.
The region has been in constant disagreement with the Iraqi national government over oil revenues, especially in the city of Kirkuk. Kurdistan is split into three provinces, with an own legislative body which controls policy-making in the region.
At the congress of his Kurdistan Democratic Party(KDP), Barzani stated that the delegates attending the conference would be presented with the issue of 'self-determination', which he considered was 'a right' of the Kurdish people. The proposal would be voted upon during the week-long conference, said media reports. This is the first such gathering since 1999 and more than 1,000 members of the party would cast their vote to elect 50 new members for the leadership committee.
Barzani's remarks also came in the presence of Prime Minister-designate Nuri al-Maliki and President Jalal Talabani.
Iraqi political parties, last month, have broken a record 249-day post-election impasse and agreed to form a government. Shia leader Maliki was handed over another prime ministerial term. The talks that put an end to the eight-month political standoff were brokered by Barzani. The Kurd leader Jalal Talabani, retained the presidency and several prominent ministerial posts are likely to be given to his faction. The KDP is currently an important partner in Maliki's coalition government.
Bhagdad, however, has often accused Kurd leaders in Kirkuk and other neighbouring provinces over independently striking deals with international oil firms. The ethnically diverse city of Kirkuk has for long been a flashpoint in the country's revenue systems.
Speaking of Kirkuk, Barzani said, "when it returns to the region... we will make Kirkuk an example of coexistence, forgiveness and joint administration, but we cannot bargain on its identity."
Posted on 12/11/2010 1:47 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Whitehall - a week on. No Sharia.
To London again. In the week since I was in Whitehall with the Pakistani Christian Association much damage had been caused to windows, telephone boxes, sculpture, statues and more by agitators using the Student tuition fee protests to foment trouble. The worst of the damage had been cleaned of the statue of Sir Winston Churchill but all of Parliament Fields was cordoned off and other statues were receiving attention. I thought Nelson Mandela was the darling of the left but his statue was still daubed with pink paint and anarchist symbols.
I met up with March for England and we made our way to a point where we could encourage the English National Alliance's third delegation to Downing Street as they made their way down Whitehall.
I have a copy of the letter which was handed in. David Cameron was reminded of the previous two letters, neither of which has received a satisfactory reply. He is further reminded that prior to the election earlier this year the Conservative party said that a situation where Sharia courts were held in mosques as a secondary legal system was unacceptable and that they would make it a priority once in power.
"We want a single English legislative system that is, irrespective of race, religion, colour, culture or sexual preferences, inclusive."
Their speaker at Waterloo Place was Stephen Green of Christian Voice. While Mr Green and I would not see eye to eye on all matters of Christian or public policy on the subject of Islam in general and halal meat in particular I am in broad agreement with him.
"Christian Voice, a prayer and lobby group, is leading the fight back against halal meat, calling for labelling of all meat that is halal or ritually slaughtered so that consumers can make an informed choice over what to buy. Every halal carcase leaves the slaughterhouse fully labelled as such. There is no excuse not to tell us.
....those of us who have a moral or religious objection to eating meat dedicated to Allah need honest labelling as well.
For example eating Muslim ritually slaughtered meat is one of four cardinal sins for a baptised Sikh. For Christians halal meat has been offered to another god, or idol and the New Testament warns against it."
A pleasant surprise was to meet with four EDL friends who I had been with at the Justice for Asia Bibi rally last week. They had attended a conference today organised by the group One Society, many Cultures called 'Speak out against Islamophobia and racism'. The group's information sheet says that they campaign against all forms of racism and islamophobia (I don't know why they single Islam out for special protection. Actually I do, dhimmitude!) and celebrate our multicultural society. Speakers included the usual suspects, Ken Livingstone, Salmonella Yaqoob, writers from the Guardian, Lutfur Rahman the Grand Vizier of Tower Hamlets, Bruce Kent, tame MPs and my own Bishop.
During the session entitled No racist concessions to the BNP and EDL, featuring convicted Police kicking criminal Martin Smith my friends (gay, Jewish and Pakistani) stood to ask questions and challenge this continued incorrect assertion that the EDL are racist. The organisers were not happy. A mobile phone was snatched and photographs destroyed. My friend was shaken by the shoulders and held in a painful grip as she and the others were manhandled out of the hall. She called the police and they are considering whether to press charges of assault. I hope to be able to supply photos from a camera which was not touched, depending on how they come out when they are downloaded. This is an account by one of the men present.
News came in from the EDL demonstration in Peterborough that the turnout was good and there were fewer UAF than on previous occasions.
I then went to see whether anything interesting was happening at New Scotland Yard where a further student protest was expected. The students were heavily outnumbered by the press but called for their right to protest freely, chanting 'too much kettle, not enough tea'- 'We will not be the lost generation' and the one heard throughout Thursday 'No ifs or buts, no to cuts'. Their elders and betters of the EDL ask for no more and endure kettleing at many of their demonstrations.
I had it easy as a student 38 years ago with free tuition and a full grant. I look forward to seeing my daughter graduate in the fullness of time and don't want to see her (or my husband and I) in heavy debt.
But I cannot help wondering this.
Tuition fees were introduced by the Labour Government in 1998 and I don't recall riots on the scale of last week. Ditto the replacement of grants with loans. Ditto the increase in fees brought in by Labour in 2004. The agitators have only fomented this violent action now that Labour is out of power. Look at the graffiti in the photographs - this isn't actually about a 'lost generation' at all.
Onwards and upwards.
Posted on 12/11/2010 2:06 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Kissinger: Gassing Jews Is "Not An American Concern"
Kissinger: Gassing Jews would not be a U.S. problem
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Henry Kissinger is heard saying the genocide of Soviet Jews would not be an American problem on newly released tapes chronicling President Nixon's obsession with disparaging Jews and other minorities.
Kissinger's remarks come after a meeting between the two men and Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir on March 1 1973, in which Meir pleads for U.S. pressure on the Soviet Union to release its Jews.
The men dismiss the plea after Meir leaves.
"The emigration of Jews from the Soviet Union is not an objective of American foreign policy," the New York Times on Saturday quotes Kissinger, then the secretary of state, as saying on the tapes. "And if they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern. Maybe a humanitarian concern."
Nixon replies: "I know. We can't blow up the world because of it."
Six months later, during the Yom Kippur War, Nixon rejected Kissinger's advice to delay an arms airlift to Israel as a means of setting the stage for an Egypt confident enough to pursue peace; Nixon, among other reasons, cited Israel's urgent need.
Nixon secretly recorded his White House conversations. After this was revealed during congressional investigations, the tapes became government property and have in intervals been released over the years.
Elsewhere on the batch of tapes recently released by the Nixon Library, the late president repeats many of the racist slurs that had appeared on earlier such releases: Irish are "mean" drunks, he says, Italians "don't have their heads screwed on tight," Jews are "aggressive, abrasive and obnoxious" and it would take blacks "500 years" to catch up with whites.
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:35 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
More On Kissinger: Nagourney In The Times
In Tapes, Nixon Rails About Jews and Blacks
YORBA LINDA, Calif. - Richard M. Nixon made disparaging remarks about Jews, blacks, Italian-Americans and Irish-Americans in a series of extended conversations with top aides and his personal secretary, recorded in the Oval Office 16 months before he resigned as president.
The remarks were contained in 265 hours of recordings, captured by the secret taping system Nixon had installed in the White House and released this week by the Nixon Presidential Library and Museum.
While previous recordings have detailed Nixon's animosity toward Jews, including those who served in his administration like Henry A. Kissinger, his national security adviser, these tapes suggest an added layer of complexity to Nixon's feeling. He and his aides seem to make a distinction between Israeli Jews, whom Nixon admired, and American Jews.
In a conversation Feb. 13, 1973, with Charles W. Colson, a senior adviser who had just told Nixon that he had always had "a little prejudice," Nixon said he was not prejudiced but continued: "I've just recognized that, you know, all people have certain traits."
"The Jews have certain traits," he said. "The Irish have certain - for example, the Irish can't drink. What you always have to remember with the Irish is they get mean. Virtually every Irish I've known gets mean when he drinks. Particularly the real Irish."
Nixon continued: "The Italians, of course, those people course don't have their heads screwed on tight. They are wonderful people, but," and his voice trailed off.
A moment later, Nixon returned to Jews: "The Jews are just a very aggressive and abrasive and obnoxious personality."
At another point, in a long and wandering conversation with Rose Mary Woods, his personal secretary, that veered from whom to invite to a state dinner to whether Ms. Woods should get her hair done, Nixon offered sharp skepticism at the views of William P. Rogers, his secretary of state, about the future of black Africans.
"Bill Rogers has got - to his credit it's a decent feeling - but somewhat sort of a blind spot on the black thing because he's been in New York," Nixon said. "He says well, 'They are coming along, and that after all they are going to strengthen our country in the end because they are strong physically and some of them are smart.' So forth and so on.
"My own view is I think he's right if you're talking in terms of 500 years," he said. "I think it's wrong if you're talking in terms of 50 years. What has to happen is they have be, frankly, inbred.[he means: have to mate with whites] And, you just, that's the only thing that's going to do it, Rose."
These tapes, made in February and March 1973, reflect a critical period in Nixon's presidency - the final months before it was "devoured by Watergate," said Timothy Naftali, the executive director of the Nixon Library.
Mr. Naftali said that there were now only 400 hours of tapes left to released, and that those would cover the final months before the tape system was shut down in July 1973 after Alexander Butterfield, who was a deputy assistant to Nixon, confirmed its existence to the Watergate committee.
Mr. Naftali said he intended to have those tapes - actually, given changing technologies since Nixon's time, CDs, and available for listening online at the library's Web site - released by 2012.
An indication of Nixon's complex relationship with Jews came the afternoon Golda Meir, the Israeli prime minister, came to visit on March 1, 1973. The tapes capture Meir offering warm and effusive thanks to Nixon for the way he had treated her and Israel.
But moments after she left, Nixon and Mr. Kissinger were brutally dismissive in response to requests that the United States press the Soviet Union to permit Jews to emigrate and escape persecution there.
"The emigration of Jews from the Soviet Union is not an objective of American foreign policy," Mr. Kissinger said. "And if they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern. Maybe a humanitarian concern."
"I know," Nixon responded. "We can't blow up the world because of it."
In his discussion with Ms. Woods, Nixon laid down clear rules about who would be permitted to attend the state dinner for Meir - he called it "the Jewish dinner" - after learning that the White House was being besieged with requests to attend.
"I don't want any Jew at that dinner who didn't support us in that campaign," he said. "Is that clear? No Jew who did not support us."
Nixon listed many of his top Jewish advisers - among them, Mr. Kissinger and William Safire, who went on to become a columnist at The New York Times - and argued that they shared a common trait, of needing to compensate for an inferiority complex.[he misdiagnoses the problem, where it does exist -- insecurity, yes, of the kind that may be seen exhibited by Christian dhimmis in Muslim lands, inferiority complex, no]
"What it is, is it's the insecurity," he said. "It's the latent insecurity. Most Jewish people are insecure. And that's why they have to prove things."
Nixon also strongly hinted that his reluctance to even consider amnesty for young Americans who went to Canada to avoid being drafted during the Vietnam War was because, he told Mr. Colson, so many of them were Jewish.
"I didn't notice many Jewish names coming back from Vietnam on any of those lists; I don't know how the hell they avoid it," he said, adding: "If you look at the Canadian-Swedish contingent, they were very disproportionately Jewish. The deserters."
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:38 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Henry Kissinger, Fully Exposed
I never thought much of Kissinger. I observed himwhen he was using Harvard to promote himself every which way, including having a "Future Influentials of the World" Program -- or a name to that effect -- at Harvard Summer School, way back when, which allowed Kissinger to create a network of "Future Influentials" who would be forever grateful to him, Henry Kissiner, for bringing them, those Future Influentials, to Harvard, which name impressed them and which they hoped would, in their present as future influentials, and future as influentials, they thought would help them along. And so it did. And so they did for Henry Kissiner. I found him a tinpot machiavel, full of obvious tricks, including that German accent that deepened with time. He was not as intelligent as many others there at the time -- than Stanley Hoffman, for example.
And observing how he managed to persuade the cheerfully ithyphallic Nelson Rockefeller, for example, that he , Rockefeller, needed a "national security intellectual" to advise him, knowing how later on, in the post-Nixon period of his existence, he was so good at getting various Wall Street big shots to give him very large sums to pontificate about world affairs -- was it Hank Greenberg of Bear Stearns who lavished so much money on Henry Kissinger -- I came to dislike even more. As National Security Adviser I thought he performed terribly, terribly in Vietnam, terribly in the Cyprus matter, and terribly in not being able to hold more than one thing -- Soviet Communism -- in his head at one time, and thus missing, when it ought not to have been missed, the dangerous Resurgence of Islam. He had a cold spot for Israel.
But until today I never knew what a complete and utter shit and fraud he was, and how essentially fearful he was of showing any understanding, much less sympathy, for the Jews of the Soviet Union. This is what not Wikileaks, but more of the Nixon tapes, with their transcripts just released, have revealed - that Kissinger was a coward, a lickspittle, a Court Jew (dvornij evrej) afraid to show Nixon he might have sympathy for Russian Jews. In Kissinger's world, that is not something anyone of sense would have, but would reveal, he thought, a special sympathy, would be special pleading.
Thank god, then, for Senator Henry Jackson who didn't have to prove anything, and could work to pass the Jackson-Vanik Amendment, that did so much good, and for those -- Jews even -- who were not nearly so cringing, behind the scenes, and so vicious, behind the scenes, as that utter shit, Henry Kissinger.
Amusing to think what Kissinger is trying to explain away now. Could he tell the Sulzbergers, in whose paper, The New York Times, the story first appeared that he merely acting out of the same kind of fear of appearing "too concerned with Jewish issues" that caused them to minimize coverage of the mistreatment and murder of Jews in Germany all through the 1930s -- a story that is told by Laurel Leff in her excellent study "Buried By The Times."
And what can he say to ditzy Barbara Walters, who for the past two decades, whenever asked about a foreign-policy matter, would reply -- on television -- that she would have to "ask Henry."
Go ahead. Ask Henry.
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:00 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
The New Duranty Times #`1
A re-posting from April, 2007:
Walter Duranty was the New York Times correspondent in the Soviet Union in the 1930s. He also won a Pulitzer Press for his coverage of the Soviet Union. This was strange, because what he reported was nonstop apologetic nonsense, and perhaps worst of all was his supposedly splendid reporting in the Soviet-induced famine in Ukraine.
The Times did a terrible job in its coverage of the Soviet Union. But that was not all. It also did a terrible job in its reporting on Adolf Hitler, the Nazis, and the persecution of Jews throughout the 1930s, and then of course, on the mass round-ups ("Aktion") and murders during the war. Many things were not mentioned at all. Others were relegated to tiny paragraphs deep inside the paper. You can read all about it in excellent book by Laurie Leff (of Northeastern University).
Because of the miserable coverage of the Nazi war against the Jews, many of the readers of The Times, and readers of other less well-endowed newspapers that did not have foreign bureaus but took their lead from The Times, never published the truth. And many readers of The Times had relatives in Europe, and could have done things to save them, had they been properly informed, properly alarmed. And perhaps, too, those in Washington who treated the groups of Orthodox rabbis who went to Washington to implore that something be done, might have done more, might have done something, anything. Instead, they let a cabal of antisemites stymie their efforts. These included Breckenridge Long in the State Department -- see "The Truth About the State Department" by William Bendiner, a pamphlet written during the war, who was determined to keep Jewish refugees out, and John J. McCloy, that swinish "pillar of the establishment." As Assistant Secretary of the Air Force, McCloy prevented the bombing of the rail lines to Auschwitz, even though American bombers were successfully destroying targets just a few miles away. One of the pilots on the first daylight bombing raids over Berlin, incidentally, and a recipient of the Medal of Honor, was one of my relatives. He and those who flew with him would have gladly bombed any rail-lines leading to death camps, had they only been given the information, and the target.
Anyway, that's why The Times -- that failed to properly cover the Soviet system, and failed to cover, and hence to warn many who might have, had they known more, worked to get their relatives out, out, out in the 1930s, out even from Germany itself -- is called The New Duranty Times.
And it has now failed again, in its miserable coverage of Islam -- of what Islam inculcates, of what is in Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira. Does the Times even mention the Hadith and Sira? Have you learned a single thing about any teachings about Infidels in Islam from reading The Times over the past decade? Since 9/11/2001? Since last year? No, you have not.
What a paper. What an example of so much that is wrong with America, and the Western world. The ignorance. The arrogance. The lack of sense and lack of responsibility. I wish it ill. Don't you?
If you subscribe, unsubscribe and read it online. Don't give them money, if you can possibly help it. If you place advertising in The New Duranty Times, stop it. Use the Internet as much as you can. If you see glossy ads in The New Duranty Times, call up the advertiser. Tell him that you will only reluctantly patronize his store, buy his goods, act in whatever way his advertising was intended to make you act. Tell him you strongly urge him to, at the very least, cease for a month -- no make that six months -- in The New Duranty Times, until they change their editor. Oh, and their attitude. Newspapers With Attitudes, when that attitude consists not of intelligent and potent criticism of the Administration's "war on terror" (the kind that can be found, for now, almost exclusively at this website or in the columns of those who read this website and take it to heart), but of the revelation of details about programs designed only to make us safer.
Do it. And do the same thing to any other newspapers (e.g. The Boston Globe, with its Op/Ed page still open to bow-tied anti-Israel H. D. S. Greenway, anti-American Jonathan Power, the egregious William Pfaff, and others of that ilk) that may be owned by the cost-conscious owners of The New Duranty Times.
Do them damage in the only way that now counts. Until they start humming "I'm Beginning to See the Light."
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:49 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
The New Duranty Times #2
Another re-posting from several years ago about the New Duranty Times, Grey Lady, "Paper of Record," and so on and so bloody forth:
Read the absurd justifications by various editors at The New Duranty Times for their failure to exhibit the courage displayed by all sorts of European newspapers and print the Muhammad cartoons. The Duranty editors don't even have the courage of many smaller American papers and campus newspapers. Make those editors of those papers the future editors of The Bandar Beacon (a.k.a. The Washington Post) and The New Duranty Times (a.k.a. The New York Times). And columnists at the NDT dutifully followed suit in this lack of courage. One example that sticks in mind and craw was Michael Kimmelman's indignation about the supposed offensiveness of those Danish cartoons, followed by some faint praise for the principle of free speech.
There is Tom Friedman, who if he knew anything was supposed to know about the Middle East, and who made his name as a reporter. Yes, he was a mere reporter. He had and has no understanding of the men and events he reported on, because he was reporting without any reference to, or understanding of, what Islam does. He had and has no idea of how it affects everything, from the slight differences in position of Maronites and Greek Orthodox in Lebanon, to the behavior, often otherwise inexplicable, of the Alawite military caste that controls Syria and must simultaneously be alert to challenges from local Sunni Muslims, and yet at the same time is willing to promote the Muslim agenda with unusual ferocity. This is as if to prove that Alawites are, despite their worship of Miriam, plus islamiste que les islamistes. So he didn't understand Lebanon, and he didn't understand Syria. But he wrote a book, and won a prize for a book, on the war in Lebanon. And that is the book, and the prize, that won him his column, and his ability to pontificate on the entire world (about which he knows even less than he knows about Lebanon), and to play the officious fool at all sorts of settings, from Davos to the $45,000-per-lecture audiences of the innocent, who come to hear the world simplified and made plain to them, by simple-minded Tom Friedman, a monstrous product of The New Duranty Times.
And there is another columnist, Nicholas Kristof, who has described the mass murders in Darfur by Arab Muslims of non-Arab (black African) Muslims, but who appears to be constitutionally unable to understand why what is happening in Darfur is simply the expression of Arab supremacism that is part of Islam, for which Islam is a vehicle. He doesn't get it, or doesn't want to. He cannot relate the Arab looting, raping, and killing of black Africans, and their status in Arab Muslim eyes as inferior Muslims, not-conceivably-complete Muslims, because they are not Arabs, to the attitude of Arabs in Iraq toward the Kurds -- and the complete indifference of the Arab League to the Al-Anfal campaign of Saddam Hussein's Arabs carried out against the Kurds. Nor does Kristof manage to relate what is happening in Darfur to another example of Arab supremacism: the cultural and linguistic imperialism on display in Algeria against the Kabyles, or Berbers. Over the past decade or two they have been rioting in Tizi-Ouzou and elsewhere, demanding that the Berber language, Tamazight, be permitted in public places. Nor can Kristof relate any of this to the ruling Arab generals who run a stratokleptocracy (rule by thieving military) in Algeria, not unlike that of Mubarak, but with a greater infusion of French-trained technocrats and dipomats than the stolid Egyptian can call on.
Unless and until Kristof begins to connect the Arab supremacism for which Islam is the vehicle, to what is happening in Darfur, he should not be taken seriously. And just why, his readers have a right to ask (and to be given his answer), do Egypt and Libya so strongly oppose any introduction of effective, i.e. Western, troops, who might actually put paid to the Janjaweed? For the Janjaweed is now apparently conducting their freewheeling murders over the border in Chad. But what are borders to the umma al-islamiyya? What are the borders for doing what one believes is God's work, which is to spread Islam, preferably by taking the loot of Infidels? If you have a lot of oil money flowing, then you don't have to resort to that -- but in the Sudan they are impatient, and can't wait for the oil revenues to flow. Full-fledged attacks on Infidels in southern Sudan have been temporarily halted because of Western pressure and interest and publicity. Jihadists have therefore sought a substitute, and the substitute at hand are those quasi-Muslims, those Muslims who, not being Arabs but mere blacks, cannot possibly rank as high, or be as good Muslims as any Arab on a camel can, shooting his rifle, smashing that baby's skull with the butt.
No, none of that has appeared in Nicholas Kristof's many anguished reports from Darfur. He cannot connect the Arab mistreatment of Darfur blacks to Arab mistreatment of Berbers, or Kurds, or any other non-Arab Muslims. He cannot make the connection, just as Tom Friedman cannot explain the absurdity of the "two-state solution" and other things about which he, Friedman, has been so excitably enthusiastic. That is Friedman: excitable, an enthusiast above all for whatever little title-shtick he comes up with -- "the world is flat" or "the lexus and the olive-tree" or... well, I have a good one for Friedman, but as he comes to this site to be horrified at what is said about him, I won't bother helping him out.
The New Duranty Times, The New Duranty Times.
Jock Whitney's Herald-Tribune, the Boston Evening Transcript that the son of the St. Louis furrier used as the title of a poem, and for that matter hundreds and hundreds of other newspapers have lived and then have died. So also magazines have lived and died: the North American Review, Judge, Hound and Horn, and thousands of others. Even Punch, the famous Punch that seemed as if it could not possibly sink, finally did -- glug, glug.
Ubi sunt? They ask that of men, and also of newspapers. And it will be asked, sooner than people realize, of The New Duranty Times.
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:51 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
A Tribute To Henry Kissinger (2006)
I just ran across this I wrote about Kissinger, in September 2006. Were I writing it today, I would not be nearly as kind.
Henry Kissinger's accent has deepened ever since his Sammy-Glick days working for Nelson Rockefeller and training those Future Leaders of the World at Harvard Summer School (making his contacts, filling his Rolodex, spreading his fame, making his moves). He did all this no doubt to the chagrin of those who, purely in intellect but not in sammy-glickdom, were his clear superiors, such as Stanley Hoffmann (who alas came a cropper over Israel, and now over Islam --some who had taken his course "On War" thought he was Raymond Aron, and he turned out...not to be).
Kissinger never gave any sign of understanding Islam during his active career, before he began trading on government "service" to open Kissinger Associates and pocket a half-million a year from Bear Stearns. He is the kind of fellow whose "insights" and "understanding" are breathlessly reported by Barbara Walters ("well, Henry says this" and "Henry says that" to those on the other end of the telephone).
He also offers a kind of upscale version for the select few at some blend of Harmonie Club-Lazard Freres-Park Avenue Synagogue do, with a touch of busy, hectically busy, investment bankers and men of the world who don't have time to read or think for themselves, so they'll let the honorable Henry Kissinger of Kissinger Associates do it for them, tell them what it all means, tell them what makes sense. Not quite as bad as the groups of businessmen at conventions whose steering committee has rented, for an hour lecture of perfect simpleton-simpleminded simplicissimus simliplicity, Mr. Tom Friedman who 'splains it all to you. But close.
If Henry Kissinger says it, must it be true? The recycling of a by-now banality, "the clash of civilizations," is telling. He can't phrase things on his own, he can't see what's wrong with the prefabricated phrase, he thinks he has to run with it. Easy on his own mind, and easy on the minds of others. The kind of celebrity only Charlie Rose could love.
It is not a "clash of civilizations" -- the Indic, the Sinic, the Orthodox, the Catholic, and so on. If China is in a rivalry with the United States, it is not because of any natural "clash" between the "Sinic" and the advanced Western civilizations, but is merely a case of Great Power rivalry, of the kind that Great Britain and Germany in 1914, or England and France in 1860, exhibited.
Were China and the United States to become rivals, it would not be because of the "Sinic" clash with the "Western," and if China and India were to become rivals in Asia, it would not be because of some necessary clash of the "Sinic" with the "Hindu." In effect, all the non-Muslim powers are part of the same world. But Islam is different. Islam teaches its adherents to divide the universe between Believer and Infidel, Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb. Henry Kissinger fails to recognize this. The phrase "clash of ciivilizations" is not only prefabricated, a phrase on tap - it is also a telltale sign of mental laziness, as are other fixed phrases and received ideas which do not correspond to the truth.
The truth is not that there is a "clash of civilizations," nor that there is a clash of Islam and the West. Islam is as hostile to the Hindus, of India, of Kashmir, of Bali, of Malaysia, and to those still living in Bangladesh and Pakistan, as it is to Westerners. It is just as hostile also to the helpless black Africans, non-Muslim or non-Arab and therefore distinctly inferior Muslims, of the southern Sudan and Darfur and southern Nigeria and everywhere that the forces of Islam, of Arab Islam in this case, meet with any opposition or obstacles.
The war was declared 1350 years ago. It goes on, when and wherever it can, wherever the instruments of Jihad exist. It required the OPEC oil bonanza, and then the millions of Muslims were so foolishly allowed into the countries of the West, and then the technology of that same West was used to disseminate the full message of Islam and aid campaigns of Da'wa, in order to take the doctrine of Jihad and put it into effect. "Terror" is only one of its weapons - the only one that the timid Bush Administration seems inclined, at this point, to talk about. But Da'wa and demographic conquest, especially in Western Europe, are at present the main instruments of Jihad. They won't be, if the Muslim states acquire better weapons, or manage to seize control of the armories of Western countries, through the very effect of that demographic conquest that might allow them to take over, without military conquest, some or many or all of the Infidel states of Western Europe.
Kissinger is getting there, perhaps. But his solemn misstatements, and his record, are clear. Compared to Scowcroft and Baker and Brzezinski he may impress, but that is setting the bar right on the ground, and it is hardly much of an achievement if someone manages to step over it.
A little more is demanded. Kissinger was weighed and found wanting long ago. He hasn't gained weight, metaphorically speaking, since.
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:53 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
A Musical Interlude: Ain't He Sweet? (Annette Hanshaw)
Posted on 12/11/2010 3:55 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Suicide bomber in central Stockholm
From Stockholm News
A car exploded at the busy shopping street Drottninggatan in central Stockholm. Then there was another explosion some distance away and one man died. According to news agency TT, a man had blown himself to death. He carried six interconnected pipe bombs but only one exploded. He also had a backpack full of nails, according to newspaper Aftonbladet.
At least four ambulances were sent to the scene. Two people were taken to hospital with minor injuries, they had been in the vicinity of the explosions.
According to witnesses, the man shouted something in Arabic before the bomb detonated.
The Swedish news agency TT reports that both them and the Swedish Security Service received a video-film only ten minutes before the explosions.
In the film a man addresses to "Sweden and the Swedish people". He, among else, refers to the Swedish silence on artist Lars Vilks paintings of the muslim prophet Mohammed, the Swedish soldiers in Afghanistan, saying that "now shall your children, daughters and sisters die as our brothers and sisters and children are dying."
The Security Service and the Stockholm Police are in a meeting following the explosions. There is however still much confusion. The Security Service do not want to make any statement in the current situation.
Posted on 12/11/2010 4:44 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Saturday, 11 December 2010
BBC World Service on European antisemitism: Part 2
Part 2 of this series (Part 1 here) focuses on Holocaust denial. From Harry's Place:
The report concludes with some powerful observations by Howard Jacobson [o]n why the State of Israel is so important to Jews worldwide, regardless of what they think of its policies and actions:
"Country after country kicks Jews out. 'Out you go, out you go, go where the hell you like.' The idea that such countries can say, 'We kicked you out but we are absolutely appalled that you might now have decided to find a place where you might like to congregate and say that you would like to be be mainly for you.' You can't kick people out and then determine what they do when they go somewhere else. Given the history of them, it makes perfect sense. They would be mad not to do so."
Listen here. The points are well made, and it is always good to hear from Anthony Julius and Howard "Homunculus" Jacobson. But perhaps the BBC should look closer to home than Lithuania, and put its own house in order.
Posted on 12/11/2010 6:57 PM by Mary Jackson
Saturday, 11 December 2010
Cockroaches Turn Right
ScienceShot: Cockroaches Prefer Right Turns
Credit: Hong Liang/Texas A&M University
When a cockroach scuttles into a dark corner as we flip on the kitchen light, we feel revulsion, not kinship. But a new study reveals that most humans share a basic trait with Kafka's creepy creatures: right-handedness. In a new study, researchers released roaches into a Y-shaped tube, where scents of vanilla or ethanol enticed the insects to venture past the tube's splitting point. The researchers then recorded which direction the bugs turned. Cockroaches with intact antennae preferred the tube's right fork 57% of the time. This right-side bias persisted even after the scientists chopped off one of the bugs' sensitive antennae, used to sense touch and smells. The finding, which will be published in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Insect Behavior, adds to a growing body of evidence that even the tiniest brains show side-preference. The insight could aid bioengineers who hope to control cockroaches for search and rescue missions or pest control.
See more ScienceShots.
Posted on 12/11/2010 9:13 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald