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The Oil Cringe of the West: The Collected Essays and Reviews of J.B. Kelly Vol. 2
edited by S.B. Kelly
The Impact of Islam
by Emmet Scott
Sir Walter Scott's Crusades and Other Fantasies
by Ibn Warraq
Fighting the Retreat from Arabia and the Gulf: The Collected Essays and Reviews of J.B. Kelly. Vol. 1
edited by S.B. Kelly
The Literary Culture of France
by J. E. G. Dixon
Hamlet Made Simple and Other Essays
by David P. Gontar
Farewell Fear
by Theodore Dalrymple
The Eagle and The Bible: Lessons in Liberty from Holy Writ
by Kenneth Hanson
The West Speaks
interviews by Jerry Gordon
Mohammed and Charlemagne Revisited: The History of a Controversy
Emmet Scott
Why the West is Best: A Muslim Apostate's Defense of Liberal Democracy
Ibn Warraq
Anything Goes
by Theodore Dalrymple
Karimi Hotel
De Nidra Poller
The Left is Seldom Right
by Norman Berdichevsky
Allah is Dead: Why Islam is Not a Religion
by Rebecca Bynum
Virgins? What Virgins?: And Other Essays
by Ibn Warraq
An Introduction to Danish Culture
by Norman Berdichevsky
The New Vichy Syndrome:
by Theodore Dalrymple
Jihad and Genocide
by Richard L. Rubenstein
Spanish Vignettes: An Offbeat Look Into Spain's Culture, Society & History
by Norman Berdichevsky



















These are all the Blogs posted on Wednesday, 7, 2011.
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Advent Pub sign 7

A Dickensian Christmas card scene.

The Coach and Horses in Barton on Humber.

Posted on 12/07/2011 3:49 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Plan for Minto mosque changed to a craft centre

When I first read this I thought it was an update of this story from last month. But this is a different scheme thousands of miles away in New South Wales. From the Campbelltown Macarthur Advertiser

THE Muslim group that tried to build a mosque on environmentally protected land in Minto has not given up hope.

But they say the studio they now want to put there is just for crafts, not religious gatherings. "There's no relationship between our previous plan and this development," said a spokesman for the Australian Muslim Welfare Centre, Anisul Afsar.

When they bought the Eagleview Road lot they intended to build a mosque, multi-purpose hall, Islamic education centre, women's activity centre, library, sports centre, gym, playground and car park.

But Mr Afsar said the council told them the site was not zoned for a religious centre so they have submitted a development application to put a single-storey studio on the site. The 170-square-metre studio would be used by a private tenant who makes Bangladeshi cultural handicrafts.

But the group hopes the property will be rezoned in the next few years to allow for a mosque to be built.

They have the land - it is now space sacred to Islam. And they have the patience for the slow jihad.

Posted on 12/07/2011 3:57 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Dobie Gray Has Died

When the call came this morning and I heard my husband say his name, I thought it was Dobie with his usual Christmas phone call. He always called at Christmas time. Dobie sang at our wedding. He was a really fine gentleman and a good friend. He will be missed.

UPDATE: He died of liver cancer.

Gray was born near Houston, Texas, by his own account in Simonton although some sources suggest the nearby town of Brookshire.[3][4] His birth name was probably Lawrence Darrow Brown,[4][5] who is listed in the Fort Bend County Birth Records as being born in 1940 to Jane P. Spencel and Jethro Clifton Brown. Other sources suggest he may have been born Leonard Victor Ainsworth,[1] a name he used on some early recordings.

His family were sharecroppers, and he discovered gospel music through his grandfather, a Baptist minister.[3] In the early 1960s he moved to Los Angeles, intending to pursue an acting career but also singing to make money. He recorded for several local labels under the names Leonard Ainsworth, Larry Curtis, and Larry Dennis, before Sonny Bono directed him towards the small independent Stripe Records. They suggested that he record under the name "Dobie Gray", an allusion to the then-popular sitcom The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.[4] His first taste of success came in 1963, when his seventh single "Look At Me", on the Cor-Dak label, recorded with bassist Carol Kaye,[6] reached # 91 on the Billboard Hot 100.[5][7] However, Gray's first album, Look!, failed to sell.[6] Greater success came in early 1965 when his original recording of "The 'In' Crowd" (later recorded by Ramsey Lewis) reached # 13 on the chart. Written by Billy Page, arranged by his brother Gene,[8] and produced by Fred Darian,[5][9] Gray's record reached # 11 on the US R&B chart, and # 25 in the UK. The follow-up, "See You at the Go-Go", recorded with such top session musicians as Kaye, Hal Blaine and Larry Knechtel, also reached the Hot 100, and he issued an album, Dobie Gray Sings For 'In' Crowders That Go Go Go, which featured some self-penned songs.[6]

Gray continued to record, though with little success, for small labels such as Charger and White Whale, as well as contributing to movie soundtracks.[7] He also spent several years working as an actor, including 2½ years in the Los Angeles production of Hair.[1][4] In 1970, while working in Hair, he joined a band, Pollution, as singer and percussionist. They were managed by actor Max Baer Jr. (best known as "Jethro" in The Beverly Hillbillies), and released two albums of soul-inspired psychedelic rock, Pollution I and Pollution II.[6][10] The band also included singer Tata Vega and guitarist/singer James Quill Smith. After that, he worked at A & M Records on demo recordings with songwriter Paul Williams.[4]

In 1972, he won a contract with Decca Records, shortly before it became part of MCA, to make an album with producer Mentor Williams, Paul's brother, in Nashville. Among the songs that they recorded at the Quadrafonic Sound Studios, co-owned by session musicians Norbert Putnam and David Briggs, was Mentor Williams' song "Drift Away", featuring a guitar riff by Reggie Young.[4][11] Released as a single, the song rose to # 5 on the US pop charts, and remains Gray's best known song today.[1] The follow-up, a version of Tom Jans' much-covered song "Loving Arms", made # 61 in the chart. Gray also released three albums with MCA, Drift Away, Loving Arms, and Hey, Dixie, but later stated that MCA were unsure of how to market the albums - "They didn't know where to place a black guy in country music."[4]

In the mid-1970s he moved permanently to Nashville and signed for Capricorn Records, writing songs in collaboration with Troy Seals.[1] His biggest hit singles in the late 1970s were "If Love Must Go", # 78 in 1976, and "You Can Do It", # 37 in late 1978, his last solo chart hit to date.[5] He increasingly concentrated on songwriting, writing songs for a variety of artists including Ray Charles, George Jones, Johnny Mathis, Charley Pride and Don Williams.[4][7] Gray also toured in Europe, Australia and Africa in the 1970s. He performed in South Africa only after persuading the apartheid authorities to allow him to play to integrated audiences, becoming the first artist to do so in that country.[1] His popularity in South Africa continued through numerous subsequent concert tours.[3][4]

 more>>
Posted on 12/07/2011 8:12 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Iran And The Presidential Election

From realclearpolitics:

By Carl M. Cannon - December 7, 2011


The U.S. economy is sick, Americans are hurting, and war in Afghanistan continues without a decent resolution in sight. The Tea Party crowd registers outrage at profligate, ineffectual Big Government, while the Occupy Wall Street crowd focuses its anger on profligate and ineffectual Big Business.

There is much news to cover these days. Yet what if all those are secondary concerns? What if there is an existential threat to our way of life that makes most of the issues being discussed on the 2012 campaign trail seem minor? We've been here before, and not that long ago, and our political system didn't handle it very well.

In the 2000 presidential campaign, neither Al Gore nor George W. Bush discussed what they’d do as president about al-Qaeda. The two candidates barely mentioned Osama bin Laden and even the broader issue of terrorism rarely arose at all.

Considering what was going on in the world at that time, this was inexplicable; after 9/11 it seemed staggering. Here’s what had taken place in the five years prior to that presidential election:

Expelled from Sudan, bin Laden set up shop in Afghanistan, where he allied al-Qaeda with the Taliban and subsequently issued two ominous fatwas. The first, formulated in 1996, flatly declared war on the United States. The second decree, in 1998, proclaimed that it was the duty of every believing Muslim “to kill the Americans and plunder their money” everywhere in the world. Al-Qaeda followed through by bombing two U.S. embassies in Africa, killing some 225 people and injuring hundreds.

Two years later, as the U.S. presidential race entered the home stretch, suicide bombers blew a hole in the USS Cole, which was docked in Yemen, killing 17 American sailors and wounding 39. Attacking a naval vessel has always been considered an act of war, but bin Laden’s murderous designs never arose in three 2000 presidential debates and a fourth face-off between the vice presidential candidates.

Whose fault was this? Let’s start with the news media, which sent planeloads of reporters on the campaign trail with the candidates, and which moderated the debates, but did not make terrorism a priority. To underscore this point, let me be explicit: I covered that campaign, and never wrote about al-Qaeda or bin Laden at all. I will not make the same mistake again.

The Islamic Republic of Iran is apparently building atomic bombs, along with the missiles to deliver them. As recently as Nov. 18, the International Atomic Energy Agency issued a rebuke to Iran. Officials from Tehran responded as they have for years with an incongruous mixture of denial and defiance. “Iran will not bow to pressure,” said Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran's envoy to the IAEA.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the elected leader of that country, employs the same logic when discussing Israel: He denies the Holocaust while promising another. Ahmadinejad routinely asserts that the Holocaust is “a myth,” claims that “hidden elements” (i.e. Jews) were behind the 9/11 attacks, and has vowed to destroy Israel. “The uniform shout of the Iranian nation is forever 'Death to Israel,’ ” he said in 2009.

His standard rant is a mixture of historical gibberish and cartoonish anti-Semitism -- but with enough grim threats thrown in to keep anyone from finding him funny. Shortly after assuming power in 2005, Ahmadinejad said flatly that Israel must be “wiped off the map,” a sentiment he attributed to Iran's ranking cleric, the nation's "Supreme Leader," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who never denied it.


In other words, as unhinged as he sounds, Ahmadinejad is the moderate in Iran.

The civilized world is finally responding. The forms of this response vary, ranging from the increased economic sanctions being discussed in Australia and Great Britain to more direct action: mysterious explosions at nuclear facilities in Iran presumed to be the work of Israel and cyber attacks believed to originate from the United States.

Last week’s orchestrated mob attack on the British Embassy in Tehran were evidently an answer to this pressure, but what the ransacking really did was underscore the outlier quality of the regime. But uncivilized is not the same thing as unreasoning: Tehran’s leaders are showing the West that they will push back against the one economic sanction they really fear: Targeting the Central Bank of Iran -- and other banks that do business with it.

This step, advocated by the United States Senate on a 100-0 vote, would genuinely hurt Iran economically. But the likely retaliation -- a spike in gasoline prices -- would hurt the United States as well, and so far the Obama administration has been reluctant to take that step.

But it might be forced to. “If this brutal and terrorism-sponsoring regime achieves this goal -- if Iran gets the bomb -- we in the U.S. and freedom-loving nations around the world would have failed what is our generation's greatest test for securing the 21st century,” Illinois Republican Sen. Mark Kirk said Tuesday at an American Enterprise Institute forum in explaining the rationale for sanctions against Iran’s bank.

Even before the storming of the British Embassy, the problem of Iran had percolated into the 2012 presidential contest, although probably not enough. It has also dented the consciousness of the media in a way that Osama bin Laden did not in 2000. Have we learned our collective lesson? Perhaps.

Journalists are asking questions and producing the kind of pieces that were largely missing in 2000. Among the most notable, Jeffrey Goldberg wrote an eye-opening cover story for The Atlantic on Iran’s nuclear ambitions last year. Goldberg returned to this theme recently in sobering columns for Bloomberg News. Veteran network reporter Andrea Mitchell hosted her midday MSNBC show from Israel on Tuesday, with this matter front and center. In fact, that cable network, which often tries conservatives’ patience, has distinguished itself on this issue.

Last month, on “Morning Joe,” Mika Brzezinski hosted a program on which former U.S. diplomat Richard Haas and Iranian official Mohammad Javad Larijani discussed Iran’s nuclear program.

Aside from denying everything, and doing so with a mirthless smile, Larijani claimed that Iran had “fantastic relations” with all its neighbors, termed the United States the world’s biggest sponsor of state-supported terrorism, said it had supported the Taliban and al-Qaeda, and referred to “the renegade state of Israel” as the source of all the terror in the region -- all while of refusing to grant Israel even the right to exist.

Afterward, Brzezinski, who is well-informed on foreign policy issues, was shaken. “I was actually really disturbed by the entire interview,” she told her panelists. “It was chilling.”

A few moments later, Brzezinski added, “I also would love to hear each [presidential] candidate really, really, really talk about their perspective on the Iran situation.”

Me, too.

Posted on 12/07/2011 11:51 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Is Ali Daqduq To Be Allowed To End Up Free, And In Iran?

 From The Wall Street Journal:

Dec. 7, 2011

Obama and the Hezbollah Terrorist

In Jan. 2007, Ali Musa Daqduq helped kill five Americans in Iraq. He may soon be released into Iranian custody.

Call it the triumph of ideology over national interest and honor. Having dithered for nearly three years, the Obama administration has only a few weeks to bring to justice a Hezbollah terrorist who slaughtered five U.S. soldiers in Iraq in 2007. Unfortunately, it appears more likely that Ali Musa Daqduq will instead be transferred to Iran, to a hero's welcome.

In the early evening of Jan. 20, 2007, in the city of Karbala, south of Baghdad, five black SUVs approached the location of a regular meeting between U.S. and Iraqi military officers. Inside the vehicles, which mimicked U.S. transports (to avoid heightened scrutiny), were a dozen individuals dressed in U.S. military uniforms and bearing U.S. weapons. Their drivers spoke English.

Upon reaching their target, the occupants opened fire on the Americans. One U.S. soldier was killed on the spot. Four others were kidnapped, tortured and executed.

The mastermind of this brutal attack? Ali Musa Daqduq, a Lebanese national and Hezbollah commander. U.S. forces captured him in March 2007, and, in interrogation, he allegedly provided a wealth of information on Iran's role in fomenting, training and arming Iraqi insurgents of all stripes.

With U.S. troops set to exit Iraq at the end of December, all detainees in American custody there have been transferred to the Iraqis except for Daqduq. He is set to be turned over in a matter of weeks. Based on past experience with released detainees who were in Iranian employ, U.S. officials know that Daqduq will promptly re-emerge in Iran, shaking hands with dignitaries and leading parades, before rejoining his Hezbollah colleagues.

rivkin

Multinational Forces Iraq provided the photo of Ali Musa Daqduq during the briefing in July 2007.

This outcome would be an insult to the American servicemen who have lost many comrades to insurgents such as Daqduq, who consistently failed to comply with the laws of war. Indeed, the Iraq war is the first conflict in modern history where the U.S.—having complied with the laws of war by promptly prosecuting American troops believed to have violated those laws—did not bring to justice a single one of the hundreds of captured enemy combatants who have killed Iraqi civilians, American soldiers and contractors. Impunity for war criminals debases the laws of war, violates our international legal obligations, and is inconsistent with American values.

We have already failed to stop Iran's nuclear-weapons program. We have also failed to punish Tehran for facilitating the deaths of American soldiers, or for plotting to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington. Allowing Daqduq to slip through U.S. hands would further reinforce the impression of American impotence. That will have serious repercussions, measured in diplomatic defeats and lost lives.

There is an obvious solution: Transfer Daqduq from Iraq to Guantanamo Bay to be tried by a military commission there. But this is where the Obama administration's rigid ideology comes into play—beginning with flawed, self-defeating legalistic arguments.

A successful prosecution of Daqduq would be relatively easy. He killed American soldiers and, as an unprivileged belligerent, has no combatant immunity. Yet the administration purports to be troubled by our lack of an extradition treaty with Iraq. It also points out that the Iraqis have refused to accord the U.S. legal custody of Daqduq, although the U.S. has him in physical custody. The Iraqis, of course, are being pressured by the Iranians not to accommodate this legal-custody request.

Yet we don't need an extradition treaty with Iraq to transfer Daqduq, a Lebanese citizen captured by American forces in a war zone. Since his capture occurred when the U.S. and other coalition members were the occupying power in Iraq, there is ample basis in existing international law for the American exercise of legal jurisdiction over him.

A more serious obstacle is the administration's policy of eschewing military tribunals. Earlier this year, the administration considered bringing Daqduq into the U.S. to face trial in a civilian court. In response, six Republican senators wrote President Obama, warning against trying Daqduq in federal court, and urging the president to refer him to a military commission.

The administration briefly flirted with the idea of a military commission, perhaps in Charleston, S.C. or at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. That idea seems to have been dropped after a Nov. 8 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing where Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham told Attorney General Eric Holder that if the administration were to bring Daqduq to the U.S. for a civilian or military trial, "all hell would break loose."

The administration believes that bringing anyone new, even high-value detainees, to Guantanamo is inconsistent with the goal of eventually closing the facility. This proposition is absurd, and not only because that facility remains vital and relevant to this day. It raises the question of whether administration's detention policy is actually shaped by a crass political calculus of not antagonizing its liberal base in advance of what promises to be a difficult 2012 election.

The administration should press the Maliki government in Baghdad harder to allow the U.S. to maintain custody of Daqduq following the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq. If the Iraqis still refuse, the administration should unilaterally transfer Daqduq to Guantanamo to face justice.

While the Maliki government may protest publicly, it will rejoice privately, since Daqduq's rendition would demonstrate Washington's resolve in the face of Tehran's pressure. Allowing him to go unpunished is both inexcusable and dangerous.

Posted on 12/07/2011 11:57 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
A Musical Interlude: I've Got A Feeling I'm Falling (Annette Hanshaw)
Listen here.
Posted on 12/07/2011 1:11 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Lazy stab in the dark

Listening to Pergolesi's Stabat Mater is like drinking champagne with God.

- HC Robbins Landon (h/t Samizdata)

It is indeed a divinely biscuity and yeasty piece. Have a listen:

Problem is, I remember an old college friend asking me whether "stabat mater" means "stab your mother". That gets in the way. What a Sillius Sodus:

Posted on 12/07/2011 1:56 PM by Mary Jackson
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Remembering December 7, 1941

In December 1941, I was a member of the Junior Society of New York’s Temple Emanu-el. On Saturday evening December 6, 1941, the Junior Society held a formal dance.  I was within a month of my 18th birthday and the dance was the first time I wore formal dress. I actually wore an overly-formal, white tie and tails outfit, actually a hand-me-down. After the dance, all of us gravitated to 52nd Street, at the time New York’s café society center. Some of us stayed in one of the cafes until about 2:00 A.M. I got to bed at about 3:00 A.M. We were carefree.

I must have slept until 3:00 PM Sunday December 7.  The next thing I knew, a Junior Society friend was shaking me. “Wake up,” he said, “the Japs have bombed Pearl Harbor!” Almost immediately, I knew that the lives of all of the young men in our age group had irrevocably changed. A group of us found our way to Times Square where a huge, stunned crowd had gathered. All of us were watching the electric moving sign on the Times building which was doling out whatever meager information was available. We did not know for years the full extent of the damage Japan had wrought that morning, eight battleships, three cruisers and three destroyers damaged or sunk, 188 aircraft destroyed (almost all on the ground), and 2,402 Americans killed.

After a while, we gravitated to Emanu-el at Fifth Avenue and Sixty-fifth Street, and hung around in an available room. All of the men were of the age, 18-25, that would be the first to be called to serve. The girls stood around saying very little, but they clearly understood the situation. What a change from the frivolity of dressing up for a dinner-dance the evening before and the stark realization that some of us would not survive the war and that others would be permanently impaired by the injuries sustained in battle.

My situation was different from the other men. I had already made known to the Hebrew Union College (HUC) that I intended to enter in September. This meant that my draft classification was 4-D, divinity student exempt from service. In 1944 I had doubts about wanting to continue at HUC and volunteered for the army, but was turned down because of a minor back problem that has never bothered me since.

The United States was unprepared for the disaster in spite of the fact that we had credible warnings that the Japanese were planning something that would drastically affect US-Japanese relations, but complacent US officials ignored them.

Once again, the United States has been warned and once again has elected complacency in the form of sanctions (that the President seeks to weaken) to facing the peril that confronts us. From the start of the 1979 Revolution, enthusiastic crowds have responded to the Ayatollah Khomeini’s characterization of America as the “Great Satan” and Israel as the “Little Satan,” by chanting “Death to America; Death to Israel.” In the same spirit, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has asked rhetorically: “Is it possible to witness a world without America and Zionism? You had best know that this slogan and this goal is attainable and surely can be attained.” (Transcript of keynote address of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the World Without Zionism Conference, Teheran, 26 Oct. 2005, <http://www.iranfocus .com/modules/news/article.php?storyid=4164>)

The real question before America is whether our cultural narcissism will prevent us from seeing that the Iranian leaders mean what they say. Even without a nuclear arsenal, Iran has been responsible for the recent assault on the British Embassy in Tehran, a mini-replay of the 1979 assault on the US Embassy, plotted the assassination of  the Saudi and Israeli ambassadors to the United States, and engaged in numerous other  terror acts either directly or through client-proxies. These include the killings at the Mykonos Restaurant in Berlin (whose convicted killers were released by the German government in 2007), the bombing of the Beirut US Marine Barracks killing 241 servicemen, the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia killing 19 US servicemen and wounding 372 of many nationalities, the bombing of the Buenos Aires Jewish Community Center, killing 87 and wounding 100, and many more such attacks.

If the Iranian regime can act so brazenly at a time when they have yet to possess nuclear weapons, can anyone believe they will act with greater restraint if and when they acquire a fully operable nuclear arsenal? There is also the issue of whether the Iranian regime, headed by men imbued with an apocalyptic-messianic view of existence, might actually welcome a nuclear attack on the United States in the hope that the ensuing chaos and destruction caused by American retaliation would somehow hasten the “return” of the Twelfth Imam, the Shi’ite Messiah. Does this sound far-fetched? Of course it does, but apocalyptic messianism is not exactly the breeding ground of rational political calculation.

Posted on 12/07/2011 4:48 PM by Richard L. Rubenstein
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Gingrich: John Bolton for Sec. of State

Now, if he'd choose Andy McCarthy for Attorney General...

story here.

Posted on 12/07/2011 6:09 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Three Bloc-Notes By Yvan Rioufol
"Dire la vérité aux Français" : parions que l'expression va faire un tabac en politique ces prochaines semaines. Les crises incitent aux confidences démocratiques, quand nulle propagande ne peut plus rien dissimuler. Voici déjà deux aveux : oui, un État peut tomber en faillite ; oui, l'euro pourrait ne pas passer l'hiver. La cruauté serait de publier les démentis catégoriques et les insultes contre ceux qui osaient envisager ces issues. Le grand déballage promet d'autres sincérités forcées, tant les faits sont têtus. Ainsi, la non-viabilité du modèle social finira par être admise, puisqu'il faudra à la France toujours moins d'État et de ­dépenses. Mais derrière les confessions, il y a bien des mensonges et des désinformations.

N'en déplaise aux sermonneurs et aux rééducateurs, les désastres obligent à tout dire. Y compris sur l'état intime de la France, affaiblie par un processus de décivilisation (Décivilisation, Renaud Camus, Fayard) qui se lit dans l'ultraviolence des jeunes, la criminalité sans limites, l'impolitesse croissante, la déculturation qui gagne les élites. Cet échec de la transmission, le ministre de l'Intérieur, Claude Géant, l'admet quand, mardi au dîner de La Revue des Deux Mondes, il regrette le "déclin de la civilité" et défend "une politique de civilisation". Mais son projet de rétablir la morale civique à l'école est aussi timide que son désir de réduire de 10 % l'immigration légale après avoir reconnu, dimanche, qu'accueillir 200 000 étrangers par an, c'était "trop".

Le procès du progressisme irréfléchi et de ses endoctrinements s'est ouvert avec ces premières révélations officielles qui en appelleront d'autres. (La suite ici)
Ceux qui assurent qu'il ne faut pas diaboliser l'islamisme ni redouter les revendications identitaires au Maghreb sont les mêmes qui dénoncent un dangereux "populisme" dans le semblable désir des peuples européens, et singulièrement des Français, de reprendre leur destin en mains et de préserver leur identité occidentale. Cette position unilatérale et déséquilibrée est notamment celle de Tariq Ramadan ("Finissons-en avec la diabolisation des islamistes", réclame-t-il ce mercredi dans Le Parisien). Pour sa part, il a même décrété que la France était devenue multiculturelle et devait donc en finir avec ses 1 500 ans d'histoire construite sur l'assimilation : une arrogance de vainqueur autoproclamé, dont il a fait preuve face au maire de Montfermeil, Xavier Lemoine, et à votre serviteur, lors d'un débat télévisé diffusé hier soir sur France O. J'estime que l'"islamisme modéré", dont se réclame notamment le parti tunisien Ennada qui envisageait récemment de punir les filles-mères, de rétablir le califat et de soutenir la "reconquête de Jérusalem", mériterait, y compris de la part d'Alain Juppé et de Dominique de Villepin, davantage d'élémentaires réserves.

L'histoire n'est pas avare d'aveuglements collectifs. Ainsi en fut-il sur les Khmers rouges, dont les trois plus hauts responsables comparaissent actuellement devant le tribunal international de Phnom Pen pour répondre de génocide sur le peuple cambodgien, de crimes contre l'humanité et de crimes de guerre. Un lecteur rappelait, ce week-end sur le blog, comment ces criminels avaient été initialement soutenus par l'intelligentsia française, et notamment par Le Monde. Le 17 avril 1975, le journaliste Patrice de Beer se félicitait de voir Phnom Pen aux mains des communistes : "La ville est libérée". Il allait justifier l'évacuation de ses deux millions d'habitants en quelques heures par la crainte de voir la ville bombardée. L'apologie du régime de Pol Pot fut faite par Jacques Decornoy, dans un article du 18 juillet 1975 : "Tout le monde vit de la même façon, transporte, pioche, repique, ensemence, récolte, irrigue, depuis les enfants jusqu'aux vieillards. L'allégresse révolutionnaire a, paraît-il, transformé le paysage humain", etc.

 L'intégrisme étant à l'islam ce que la terreur est au communisme, je suggère plus de prudence chez nos habituels "humanistes", ces récurrents idiots utiles des totalitarismes.
Posted on 12/07/2011 10:16 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
How the US Navy Destroyed the Japanese Task Force That Attacked Pearl Harbor

Seventy years ago at 7:48 AM Honolulu Time (1:48 PM in Washington) on December 7, 1941, the powerful Japanese Task Force, called Kido Butai, under the command of Vice Admiral Cuichi Nagumo launched two waves of more than 350 torpedo planes, dive bombers and Zero fighters that wreaked havoc at the US Naval Base at Pearl Harbor and US Army airfields at Hickham and barracks at Fort Shafter. The task force was positioned 200 miles northwest of Hawaii’s capital island of Oahu. Initial radar indications were discarded mistakenly  thought to be a flight of approaching B-17s from the mainland thus setting the stage for the devastation that was to follow. The carnage resulting in 2,400 dead, over 1,170 alone entombed in the USS Arizona, with another 430 who ultimately died in the capsized USS Oklahoma. It was as FDR’s speech intoned at a joint session of Congress, a “dastardly act”’ and a “Day that will live in Infamy.” The Kido Butai suffered the loss of less than 29 aircraft and 54 crewmen.

Simultaneously, Imperial Japanese forces invaded Wake Island, Guam,  and the Philippines in another unprovoked attack that caught General Douglas  MacArthur’s forces unprepared. Japanese forces in rapid succession struck at the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong and Malaya that led to the siege and eventual capitulation of Singapore.  The Royal Navy suffered  losses of  HMS  Repulse and Prince of Wales on December 10th  to land based Japanese aircraft attacks off the coast of Malaya.  Australia was to suffer its Pearl Harbor, with the Japanese attack on the port of Darwin in February, 1942. The Japanese invaded the oil rich Dutch East Indies fulfilling their goal of a Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.

The powerful Kido Butai that attacked Pearl Harbor was composed of six carriers, innumerable surface ships and five mini-submarines.  The core of the Japanese strike force were the carriers Akaga, Kaga, Soryu, Hiryu, Shokaku and Zuikaku. These carriers, with a combined complement of over 450 aircraft, were capable of  launching attacks simultaneously.

Yet, the US Navy was able to destroy most of the Japanese Kido Butai within six months of the Day of Infamy at Pearl Harbor.

That story is told in a new book, The Battle of Midway by Craig L. Symonds. (See this WSJ review, here). The book documents how the US Navy in the Pacific was able to rebound after the devastation of the Japanese sneak attack on the fleet at Pearl Harbor.  That victory was the product of several important factors.

1. The Japanese 'naval strike force' did not launch a suggested last wave of attacks against the oil depots at Barber's Point northwest of Pearl Harbor. See this report on what happened to the Japanese strike force following the attack.

2.  Three US aircraft carriers USS Enterprise (CV-6), USS Lexington (CV-2), and USS Saratoga (CV-3). were off on patrols when the strike occurred. The Enterprise  was on a futile mission ferrying planes to Wake Island, subsequently lost to the Japanese.  The existence of those surviving US carriers was to bedevil and obsess Admiral Yamamoto who wanted to draw them out from Pearl Harbor and destroy them. Instead that obsession was his undoing.

3.    Six of the nine US   Battleships crippled or capsized during the Japanese attack were later resurrected to fight again in the Pacific War against Japan.


4.   The Japanese fleet was not equipped with surface radar, while the US Navy had begun installation on surface ships as early as 1937. That was to play an important role in tactical execution of the several US carrier task force battles following Pearl Harbor.

5. The unsung heroes after Pearl Harbor were the code breakers led by Commander Joseph Rochefort of the Combat Intelligence Center in the basement of CincPac at Macalapa at Pearl Harbor.  These analysts with their IBM card reader systems working 20 hour stints had successfully conducted traffic analysis of the Imperial Japanese Combined Fleet headquarters communications.  That enabled identification of the Kido Butai's plans to draw out and destroy US carriers at Midway. That effort also alerted Washington to the failed Japanese assault and brief occupation of the Aleutian islands of Attu,  Kiska and Dutch Harbor in Alaska.

6. That vital intelligence information enabled CINPAC commander, Admiral Chester E. Nimitz to plan immediate actions leading up to the strategic Battle of the Coral Sea in early May, 1942. This was the first carrier battle between the US and Japanese navies in WWII.  During that engagement a Japanese task force sought to invade Port Moresby in New Guinea but was frustrated by a combined US-Australian naval force. One of the Kido Butai carriers involved in the attack at Pearl Harbor, the Shokaku ,was damaged and put out of action. The US flattop, the Lexington was heavily damaged and scuttled. While the Yorktown sustained damage, it returned to Pearl where it was remarkably repaired in less than three days for action at Midway in early June.  

7.  The intelligence also led to identification of Admiral Yamamoto’s intended targets at both Midway and in the Aleutian Islands.  It set the stage for the ambush of Yamamoto's carrier strike force off Midway.   Four carriers of the Kido Butai, Akaga, Kaga, Soryu, Hiryu and several surface ships were destroyed by successful dive bomber attacks at the cost of one US Carrier, the Yorktown. Unfortunately two attacking US torpedo squadrons were annihilated   One of the carriers involved in the ambush at Midway, the Hornet, had been used to launch the famed raid on Tokyo of USAAF Col. Jimmy Doolittle and his complement of 16 B-25's in March, 1942. It was later lost to Japanese torpedo attacks during the battle of Santa Cruz in October, 1942.   The new Essex class Yorktown replaced the loss of the original at the Battle of Midway. 

The victory at Midway in June, 1942 ended the Kido Butai's six months of rampage ranging across the Pacific and into the Indian ocean.  Japan never regained the initiative in the Pacific. Sir Winston Churchill considered the US victory at the Battle of Midway as one of the most decisive in WWII.

As to the fate of the architect of the Pearl Harbor attack, Admiral Yamamoto, he was shot down while flying over New Guinea in April, 1943 by a flight of USAAF P-38's on orders of President Roosevelt after code breakers had uncovered his flight plan.

Posted on 12/07/2011 11:03 PM by Jerry Gordon

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