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Open Thread: War Continues. 29 July 2006

Posted by marisacat in DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, WAR!.

       Norwegian UN observer, Israeli occupied Lebanon, 90s

From Reuters Alternet (full text): 

BEIRUT, July 29 (Reuters) – An Israeli air strike hit Lebanon’s main road to Damascus on Saturday just 1 km from the border with Syria, cutting the highway in both directions, witnesses and security sources said.

Three air strikes hit the road between Lebanese and Syrian immigration offices, but on the Lebanese side of the border, they said. There was no information on casualties.

The Israeli military said it had struck the road to cut arms supply routes from Syria to Hizbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.

“The military attacked the road from Lebanon to Syria to prevent the smuggling of weapons,” an army spokeswoman said.

Israeli aircraft have been pounding southern Lebanon, southern Beirut and other parts of the country in an 18-day-long war against Hizbollah.


Gore Vidal in The Progressive… from an interview he sat for in April so before some of the latest madness.  A snip or two tho… 😉

Q: Talk about the role of the opposition party, the Democrats.

Vidal: It isn’t an opposition party. I have been saying for the last thousand years that the United States has only one party—the property party. It’s the party of big corporations, the party of money. It has two right wings; one is Democrat and the other is Republican.

Q: What can people do to energize democracy?

Vidal: The tactic would be to go after smaller offices, state by state, school board, sheriff, state legislatures. You can turn them around and that doesn’t take much of anything. Take back everything at the grassroots, starting with state legislatures. That’s what Madison always said. I’d like to see a revival of state legislatures, in which I am a true Jeffersonian.


And arms dealers the world over stand up and cheer! – the refrain for war…

Asia Times takes a look at some nefarious deals and dealing for our 51st state (or is that Israel, and poor Iraq is 52nd?).  We are in the middle of the dark and nasty arms deals…  No shock!

But the latest and most interesting development on the small-arms front in Iraq was the news in May that the Pentagon has secretly shipped tens of thousands of small arms to Iraq from Bosnia-Herzegovina in the past two years, using a web of private companies. At least one supplier is a noted arms smuggler, Viktor Bout, blacklisted by Washington and the United Nations.

The US government arranged for delivery of at least 200,000 Kalashnikov machine-guns, together with tens of millions of rounds of ammunition, from Bosnia to Iraq in 2004-05, according to a report by Amnesty International, which investigated the sales. But though the weaponry was said to be for arming the fledgling Iraqi military, there is no evidence the guns reached their intended recipient.

While I am in the neighborhood of weaponry, Asia Times takes a look at the Syrian military… land sea and air.  I have no idea what is coming, but just read a not very substantial article in the Telegraphe (UK) that might well have been a float and yet made me so nervous. 

Who knows.  Trapped forever on the Champs de Mars.

    Fallujah 4/10/04  [AFP]

From the Toronto Star:

The roar across Israel’s hot blue sky was unmistakeably different.  I glanced at Capt. Doron, standing beside me at the border, the pine trees in Lebanon just a short walk away.

“F16,” he explained. “Now you’re using F16s to bomb Bint Jbeil?” I asked incredulously.   “No,” he said flatly, peering into the distance. “They’re flying further north in Lebanon.”

Then, the loud crack as the F16 attack aircraft, the “biggest bang” in Israel’s arsenal, unleashed its massive payload.

Capt. Doron counted. “One two three four five …”  The sound of a deafening explosion travelled back to us from a few kilometres away.

“Bint Jbeil,” he said, his own eyebrows now arching in surprise.


via Reuters (full text):

QANA, Lebanon, July 30 (Reuters) – An Israeli air strike on a south Lebanon village on Sunday killed at least 35 civilians, including 21 children, witnesses and rescue workers said.

They said several houses in the village of Qana collapsed and that a three-storey building where about 100 civilians were sheltering was partially destroyed.


GAZA – Round up piece from the Irish Examiner:

Israeli tanks and troops pull out of northern Gaza 

Israeli troops and tanks pulled out of northern Gaza early today after a bloody two-day sweep, killing 29 Palestinians, but Israeli aircraft pounded the area.

The Israeli army killed five Palestinians yesterday, including a 75-year-old woman and a child, and the body of a militant was found after the Israelis pulled back.

The raid produced the bloodiest violence since Israel launched its Gaza offensive a month ago, but the world’s attention is focused on Lebanon, where Israeli forces have been fighting Hezbollah guerrillas since July 12.

and a blog, A Voice from Gaza [thanks bayprairie]:

You know this silly plane called….hmm never knew the word in English will look it up and write it here. It is the one that takes pictures and monitor the movement on the ground. This has a sound of a bee. and it affects the satellite image. So if it is there, it is kind of annoying. Guess what? Only few months ago..This stupid plane started to actually targed people and bomb them.

It drops the bomb right straight on the target, while the Apache has to be away a little bit and has to have an angle to hit.

You know this not silly plane called F-16? This just hit a house that was evacuated few minutes before. Man….You know to bomb a house in a crowded residential area with a F-16 means at least 5 houses around that one will have at least broken windows, and broken door frames and will have sharp and killing debris. Doesn’t sound that bad..Does it?

I don’t want to follow more on news…I am sure the night will continue as long as the several silly planes are around.

His latest entry is on Qana, the south Lebanon village where now the count is up to 50.


I cant even stand any of the statements that concern “both sides”     I cant stand “peace”, negotiations”. Sorry, if you expect me to be rational…
Olmert is so proud and celebrates with Rice the Qana acievement.
What is wrong with those people. Did you know that 21 of them are under the age of 10. do u know that it was a big house and the 58 were sleeping! 50 raids…Qana recieved
So, If you like Hizbollah…you are bombed? Is there any other explanation!?

Qana of 1996…100 civilians in shelters were burnt
Qana of 2006 … about 60 … in their houses. the first hour of July 30th

Did you see reporters crying live? in the 1996 one and today’s!

forgive me..just needed to say something..

    Israeli tanks massing on the border with lebanon

israeli tanks massing on the border with Lebanon July 28 [Reuters]


Issacharoff, a deputy from the Israeli Embassy is on Wash Journal. I can barely stand his voice… but latest is Rice decides Beirut not too safe for her (my take anyway) .. from Reuters:

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Her diplomatic mission in jeopardy after Israel’s bombing of a Lebanese village, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice canceled a visit to Beirut on Sunday, saying she had work to do in Israel to get a truce.

Rice, who returned to the region on Saturday in a new push to bring the warring sides together, said she was “deeply saddened” by the Israeli bombing of the village of Qana in southern Lebanon, killing 40 civilians including 23 children. […]

She spoke after Lebanon’s Prime Minister Fouad Siniora said, after the latest Israeli bombing, he could not hold any talks on resolving the Middle East crisis before an immediate ceasefire.

“There is no place on this sad morning for any discussion other than an immediate and unconditional ceasefire as well as an international investigation into the Israeli massacres in Lebanon now,” Siniora told a news conference in Beirut.

Hundreds of protesters chanting “Death to Israel, Death to America” stormed the U.N. headquarters in Beirut after the bloodiest single attack of the war.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said he was in no hurry to strike a ceasefire before Israel had “reached the main objectives” set forth by the Jewish state.



From Angry Arab:

At this time: all Arab TV networks are covering live the recovery of bodies–children and women mostly–from the Israeli massacre in Qana. You saw them digging out children from under the rubble. Viewers were warned about the images. AlJazeera’s correspondent, `Abbas Nasir, broke down. Even the pro-Bush AlArabiya TV had to interrupt its Saudi stock coverage to go to Qana.

Al-Manar a aussi annoncé que le Hezbollah avait bombardé des avant-postes israéliens le long de la frontière. La milice aurait tiré au moins 47 roquettes dimanche sur le nord d’Israël, blessant légèrement dix civils.

Selon Tsahal, des roquettes Katiouchas sont tombées sur Nahariya, Kiryat Shemona et une région proche de Maalot. Mais elles ont atterri sur des zones non habitées, et il n’y aurait pas eu de blessés



1. Deepest Troat - 29 July 2006

Blair has problems of his own now.

Tony Blair was facing a full-scale cabinet rebellion last night over the Middle East crisis after his former Foreign Secretary warned Israel’s actions risked destabilising the whole of Lebanon.

Jack Straw, now Leader of the Commons, said in a statement released after meeting Muslim constituents that while he grieved for innocent Israelis killed he also mourned the ’10 times as many innocent Lebanese men, women and children killed by Israeli fire’.

Straw added that he agreed with the Foreign Office Minister Kim Howells that it was ‘very difficult to understand the kind of military tactics used by Israel’, adding: ‘One of the many serious worries I have is that a continuation of such tactics by Israel could destabilise the already fragile Lebanese nation.’

The Observer can also reveal that at a cabinet meeting before Blair’s Middle East summit talks with George Bush, minister after minister pressed him to break with the Americans’ position and publicly criticise the Israelis for the scale of death and destruction in Lebanon. No one, according to one senior minister at the meeting, weighed in to support the Prime Minister.

In addition to the cabinet pressure, one of Blair’s closest Labour confidants was understood to have privately urged him last week to ‘place distance’ between himself and Bush over the crisis.

I am pretty sure the Brits aren’t too happy knowing their country is controled by the US. Blair definitely Bush’s lap dog. woof woof.

2. observer - 29 July 2006

An interesting piece in the Sunday Times encouraging the Tories to part ways with Blair–and the U. S. on the ME.

A bit:

There’s a war on in the Conservative Party at present: the War for Cameron’s Ear. It matters, and so my own agitation matches Mr d’Ancona’s. Most readers may care little what the Leader of the Opposition thinks or says on foreign policy. We hardly noticed when Mr Blair invited Iain Duncan Smith into Downing Street to “confide” in him what he knew about Saddam Hussein and his weapons, and secure Tory support for the invasion and occupation of Iraq. But the result was to neuter the principal Opposition during the prolonged fiasco that has followed.

Mr Cameron should be alive to a comparable danger this weekend. There are some dangerous voices in the Parliamentary Conservative Party, and outside it among the set to whom senior Tories listen. One of these voices is Michael Gove, my fellow-columnist and the capable frontbencher who speaks on housing and has just had a notable success on housing information packs. Michael is a moral man, a subtle and persuasive writer, a spellbinding speaker and a powerful mind. He is also — on questions of foreign policy — stark, staring bonkers. He thinks the West is blithely unaware of a huge and pressing danger in the form of worldwide Islamist plotting, and that an urgent imperative to foil this should be at the centre of Western foreign policy. He has just written a book, Celsius 7/7 about it.

I have enough faith in Michael’s intellect and honesty to be confident that, in 20 years time, he will look back on this phase in his ideological journey as a passing embarrassment. But Michael is free to alter his opinions. Mr Cameron, if he gets stuck on the record with any variant of them, will not be.

This Conservative leader has no need yet to nail his colours to any mast. Let him give the good ship Neo-con a wide berth. In five years time her hulk will be with the fishes. And it will not be “anti-American” to say so.

3. bayprairie - 30 July 2006

What I’m reading this evening,…

A Voice From Gaza

About Me
Name: Naj
Age: 25
Gender: female
Astrological Sign: Pisces
Zodiac Year: Rooster
Location: Gaza City : Gaza Strip : Palestinian Territory

I am not a writer. and for sure not a good one. I am just a Palestinian who can manage with some language and internet access. I am one of the least angry residents of Gaza. But this very little anger is frocing me to scream through these electronic pages i am creating, hoping it can reach anyone who have some interest or concern to hear a voiceless. Forgive the poor language, forgive the unprofessional writing and designing. Try to read this anger and this love to life.

Saturday, July 29, 2006
Leaflets from Israeli Occupied skies…
Samples of Leaflets sent by Israeli Planes To the Residents of the Gaza Strip, signed by the Israeli defense Forces. In Arabic. These are few days old. There are many more were sent in different areas of Gaza. Mainly on the border areas.
I will try to translate

1- To the Residents of Gaza Strip: As a result of continuing terrorist attacks and continuing rocket launching from The Gaza Strip, The IDF will intensify its operations against weapons and munition stores and military supplies and will intensify the operations against the members and bases of terror who/which put the residents of Gaza and Israel in great danger. Do the Residents of Gaza strip have to keep on paying a high price because of the actions of those who (swagger) to solve the Palestinian cause? They are practically causing great losses under the false (mottos/claims) and “true/proven promises” similar to the ones Nasr Allah made to the Lebanese people and those that Hamas made to the Palestinian People.

Note: “true/proven promises” referring to the name of the operation by Hezbollah when it captured the two Israeli soldiers.
IDF: Israeli Defence Force

2-To the residents of The Gaza Strip: during the last few days, the IDF did operations against the people who executed terrorist actions and who helped them in launching the rockets and helped in military supply. These operations will continue as long as Gilad Shaleet is kidnapped and as long as the launching of rockets continues to be directed at the State of Israel. The IDF has different methods of fighting that hasn’t used yet, but if these terrorist attacks continues, the IDF will consider using those as appropriate. Remember that calm brings calm, and this way you would be able to live a graceful and a safe life you and your families. IDF command.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

…You know this silly plane called….hmm never knew the word in English will look it up and write it here. It is the one that takes pictures and monitor the movement on the ground. This has a sound of a bee. and it affects the satellite image. So if it is there, it is kind of annoying. Guess what? Only few months ago..This stupid plane started to actually targed people and bomb them.
It drops the bomb right straight on the target, while the Apache has to be away a little bit and has to have an angle to hit.

You know this not silly plane called F-16? This just hit a house that was evacuated few minutes before. Man….You know to bomb a house in a crowded residential area with a F-16 means at least 5 houses around that one will have at least broken windows, and broken door frames and will have sharp and killing debris. Doesn’t sound that bad..Does it?

I don’t want to follow more on news…I am sure the night will continue as long as the several silly planes are around…

From Gaza, with Love

Name: Mona El-Farra
Location: Gaza City, Occupied Gaza Strip, Palestinian Territory

I am a physician by training, a human rights and women’s rights activist by practice, in the occupied Gaza Strip.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006
home sweet home …I wonder

All that is happening right now in Gaza

26th of July
6:45 pm
Jabalia refugee camp,
Al Awda Hospital
Emergency Room

Shahd an 8 month baby girl
Maria a 4 years old child
Arrived the hospital dead

Somia and her remaining two daughters, arrived at the hospital suffering from their serious injuries, the 2 girls are now in the operating room , doctors are trying hard to save their lives, the mother’s injuries are very critical, she was referred to the town central hospital (AlShifa Hospital).

Samir,an extremely traumatized husband and father, was unable to believe what happened to his family.

Early this evening Israeli army tank launched one missile against this family’s home…

…reading, in between tears.

4. pyrrho - 30 July 2006

I have not been reading, sorry if someone pointed this out, but I and madman both mentioned google maps for use, but I was thinking about setting something up.

Then i remember Google Earth. It is a free program from google that uses the satelite data which is pretty good for beirut and puts it on a globe and already has a way to mark and share items… the info can pop up with pictures and html… I just installed it and was able to find a file showing the BBC anchors position in Beirut, allegedly.


5. pyrrho - 30 July 2006

the hariri bomb blast is also marked…

What you want is a complete list, havn’t seen one yet.

6. Deepest Troat - 30 July 2006

I have been wondering about the Aussies, I wonder if Howard feels like that forgotten step-child or is that just us here in the US tends to overlook the Aussies too. PM Howard is another Bush lapdog. Any way…

Australia asked to join Lebanon force

Australia has been asked to join a peacekeeping force in southern Lebanon, but its stretched military may be able to spare only a handful of troops.

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has asked Australia to be part of an international force which would move into the war-torn region once a ceasefire is negotiated.

Any peacekeeping force would need to be of at least 10,000 troops, and have the full political backing of both Israel and Lebanon, he said.

I wonder if plans are in the way to make an DMZ like the one between the two Koreas or its a fool ya kind of thing, one there it is meant to help Israel.

7. NYCO - 30 July 2006

This is going to be more and more about Americans (unfairly or not) asking why the Israeli military has such poor aim.

Israel’s vaunted military prowess and savvy is what has kept the averagely-informed American tolerant of U.S. support of that military. Their fast and decisive and “clean” victories in ’67 and ’73 are a big part of the mythos that has made supporting them seem like a good idea.

Americans like to back winners. Cruel, but true. And unfortunately the mythic past has been played up so much that even if there weren’t this many civilians getting killed, a lot of Americans would still be developing second thoughts.

That said, I think Americans also genuinely do care about the PEOPLE of Israel.

8. Deepest Troat - 30 July 2006

Israeli Attack Kills 56, Including 34 Children

An Israeli airstrike killed at least 56 people, including at least 34 children, in a southern Lebanese village Sunday, the Lebanese Red Cross said. It was the deadliest attack in 19 days of fighting. Lebanese security officials put the toll at 57 dead. Security officials said the toll rose dramatically after 18 people from two families were found in a single room of the building, where dozens of people had been taking refuge from the fighting.

The missiles destroyed several homes in the village of Qana as people were sleeping.

Israeli said it targeted Qana because it was a base for hundreds of rockets launched at Israeli, including 40 that injured five Israelis on Sunday. Israel said it had warned civilians several days before to leave the village.

Umm…if the purpose of an attack is to destroy a target by surprise how do you warn people they are going to hit the village? If you warn them, wouldn’t the suspected target figure out that Israel found out where the rockets were launched and if it were several days, ummm….wouldn’t it give them the chance to move them?

9. observer - 30 July 2006

Richard Silverstein thinks he’s been banned from dKos.

He may be right, but he has no confirmation despite asking for clarification by email. Of course, there’s hardly ever any confirmation. It’s like being on the “no-fly” list or having a bank file a Suspicious Activity Report on you. It’s part of the “law” that you can’t be informed of your status.

10. marisacat - 30 July 2006

Why on earth would I – should I even – care about the people of israel? US money cares for them. That is enough.

If the American people also wish to “care” for the ”people of Israel” (a very disparate group if one follows Israeli immigration practices for 60 years) then let them be that foolish. And iwth a hard hard hard right leadership?, a leadership antithetical to any sort of liberalism? A hard right nasty religious conservatism, as fundamentalist as any anywhere? And a hard right religious movement that is abusive to non observers? (check the Friday evening battles that rage in various neighborhoods in Israel, replete with cops, tear gas and mounted police to repel the religious)…

And a shrinking peace movement. And a never to be dislosed REVERSE exodus.

15, 20 years ago I thought there was a last moment sort of hope for Israel, in that a good number of the population would look at Europe – and they WANTED to be a comfortable, well off, not at war mediterranean society. That was a real hope, could they accept the realities that peace would mean? They cannot. Their leadership cannot.

I NEVER support the big weapons.

11. marisacat - 30 July 2006

I think people are foolish to write for “confirmation” of being banned.

That bunch loves for people to BEG.

The funniest thing about Dkos is all their hysteria (all about elections, really they could not care less, really…) over Bush. When they are the tiniest bullies. And all bullies are together in the end.

12. NYCO - 30 July 2006

Marisacat, all I know is that if some Al Qaeda guy transporting a nuclear suitcase bomb for detonation in Times Square, got in a car accident on the NYS Thruway and it blew up a few miles from my neighborhood, about 75% of the world would cheer my slow, radiation-induced death, regardless of the fact that I never vote Republican and hated the Iraq war and have progressive sentiments and am involved in progressive causes. They’d smile at my suffering.

That’s kind of a cold world to live in.

13. observer - 30 July 2006

I went to Red State to see how the Righties were handling Israel’s failure and happened across a front-page piece that surprised and impressed me. It’s here.

It comes from a front-pager who says he opposed the Iraq War from the beginning and now finds his views confirmed. Here’s a teaser:

From Burke we Conservatives have learned a hard principle: the “temper and character” of a people are “unalterable by any human art.” It matters not that the party which has been for twenty-five years the bearer of Conservatism in America has of late announced its repudiation of this principle: the Conservative must stand by it. The temper and character of Islamic peoples are indeed unalterable by human art; but in their veins not the blood of freedom but of piety and honor circulates. That our philosophers have since the 15th century worked to drive piety from the world of politics; that their epigones, marching with the preachment of their later implications, have forgotten this project; that, in short, we have made our own political theory ignorant as mud when it comes to religion, does not alter its influence elsewhere. A faction in our politics has worked itself into a frenzy over a looming Theocracy, erected by American Christians; this would [be] comical were it not so distracting from more important matters. In truth most of our Christians in politics are advancing a political theory that emerged from a revolt against the authority of Christianity. It is possible, though in my view unconvincing, to read John Locke as a friend of Christianity; it is not possible to extend that favor to Niccolo Machiavelli or Thomas Hobbes. Yet these are our teachers. Witness the immediate recourse of so many commentators to the language of economics, which is of course the issue of a political theory which cast God out of the public square and grounded human political equality on self-interest. All men are equal because they share a desire to possess, or to acquire, or to dominate and command respect. The philosophers who sought to free acquisitiveness, the libido dominandi of St. Augustine, from the chains by which earlier Christians (and earlier pagans) had bound it, were in point of fact subversive of Christian authority; and it is something of a puzzle why later moderns, many of them Christians, would come to imagine that the political creed of this revolt, should command assent on account of the status still afforded Christianity. According to Christian doctrine, all men are brothers under (1) the Fatherhood of God and (2) the judgment of the Fall. According to modern political philosophy, all men are brothers — and orphans — on account of their material desires.

14. Madman in the Marketplace - 30 July 2006

wow, that is on the Red State servers, and they didn’t explode from the dissonance?!?!

I might disagree with his goals, but that sums up the problem w/ the Republican party, and American political parties in general, very well.

15. observer - 30 July 2006

Ahmadinejad writes Bush as if religious faith is some common bond between them. I’m sure he knows better. Bush and Co. are on a Crusade at the behest of the Invisible Hand of the Rigged Market. Nothing to do with anything recognizable as Christianity.

16. Deepest Troat - 30 July 2006

It’s a cold world but at the same time, karma will come back and bite us in the ass for our past and current behaviors. Take a look at the Germans and I don’t mean Nazi Germany, the same Anti-German sentiment also occured during WW I when many countries attempted to dehumanize Germans as the enemy. It was done here when the US entered the war, some German-American immigrants were looked upon with suspicion and attacked regarding their loyalty. It went so far people thought German thinking was dominated by “prophets of war” like Nietzsche.

If you take a look at William L. Shirer’s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich Shirer does not separate the Nazi’s and the German people, those from the White Rose Society, he wrote that it was a German group think. For example, on page five he writes that “the German people” were “a natural instrument which he [Hitler, that is] was able to shape to his own sinister ends.”

He also wrote that Bismarck, Kaiser Wilhelm II, and HItler left a group think mentality upon the German people in the form of a “lust for power and domination, a passion for unbridled militarism, a contempt for democracy and individual freedom and a longing for authority, for authoritarianism.” And once more in thundering tones of pontifical certitude it is asserted that “Nazism and the Third Reich … were but a logical continuation of German history.”

And that thought still remains for a lot of us. If the Germans say something militaristic, first thought is Nazis.

Lets not forget the Japanese
120,000 Japanese and Japanese Americans were forced into Japanese internment. And it wasn’t just Americans who did the same thing, more than 22,000 Japanese Canadians were forcibly interned in Canada.

We are doing that now in ME and it will come back and bite us. Empires will always have a backlash.

17. marisacat - 30 July 2006

well no people are monolithic. I never ascribe that – not to the Japanese, the Germans, not even my own people (who are mess, all too often). But Israel is a small country, and the selling of it as purely post-Holocaust is out of date.

Meanwhile Blair is here in SF, on a self-promotion tour. Seems to be trodding the same route that Gorbachev took a few years ago. A soft landing in Northern California.

18. bayprairie - 30 July 2006

Richard Silverstein thinks he’s been banned from dKos.

He may be right, but he has no confirmation despite asking for clarification by email.

He is right, this is how these things are done. Many commenting here have had an identical experience, some more than once.

There are sometimes exceptions, Madman being the perfect example, where the enablers and assists get together in a celebratory thread and berate the recently banned. I see Richard’s drawn one of the standard “reasons” the management gins up when needed.

“Progressives”, my ass, certainly not at the top, anyway.

19. marisacat - 30 July 2006

“Progressives”, my ass, certainly not at the top, anyway.

campaign operatives. nothing more.

20. NYCO - 30 July 2006

Re the effects of the current events in the Middle East… my fascination with it, as it relates to America, is how previously unnoticed fault lines in the American supermyth may become exposed because Israel has not performed up to expectations.

I’m also interested in the mechanics of how America will start eating itself as it continues to lose standing and power in the world. (Actually, I’m intensely interested in this, as I feel I live in a region of the country that is going to be on the thin end of the stick no matter who gets into power.)

I’m trying to live 10-20 years in the future, right now. This is why I don’t particularly care who wins the White House in 2008. The difference seems academic.

21. marisacat - 30 July 2006

I only find 2008 interesting in terms of observing politics. Or the spasms that pass for politics. It truly does not matter. Our systems, such as they are, are moribund.

And the ISraeli putsch fails as we fail, spectacularly, in Iraq.

Neither country is able to admit what is clear and is standard, on the ground insurgencies, motivated to whatever purpose, will prevail.

They just will. Eventually.

LOL the Round table on This Week discussed that the US may have to pull back to … Kurdistan.

Which will be dicey in the end too.

Pity people have to die as we insist that the easily observable truth is not happening.

22. CSTAR - 30 July 2006


From a report on McClatchey news service today (no link, hardcopy) “They should choose their neighborhoods better”. This is a quote from a 21 year old Israeli soldier manning an artillery piece on the front line. There is an implication in this quote (well supported by the context — I am not including the entire graf, it’s just too long to type) that “target legitimacy” is transitive, that is “If you live in a Hezbollah neighborhhood or you use Hezbollah social services you are a legitimate target”. This is a dangerous slippery slope.

The Israelis have for the most part decided that this is a live-or-die struggle for them and apparently believe that by pure force of arms they can prevail. This war is different. Here is a typical quote from a former “Peace mom”

“Today, too, within this new war again, I do not think we were wrong. The exit from Lebanon was one of the boldest and most correct and most just actions done here in the last generation. The way it was done was also right. With no one killed and no one wounded. I do not accept the argument that this caused the intifada. I think we have no choice but to take our fate in our hands. We cannot sit and wait for the other side to mature.

Barring decisive action by a third party (the European Union perhaps), the outcome of this is now becoming sadly predictable.

Complete annihilation of Lebanon, meaning: relentless bombing of anything that moves on the ground, well over a million refugees, most of them with no homes to return to;

If that fails, aerial confrontation with Iran; If that fails
(for example by Iran in turn escalating into Iraq), Nukes.

Israel (supported broadly buy its population) has raised the stakes to such a high level that it cannot back down without declaring defeat.

23. marisacat - 30 July 2006


24. wilfred - 30 July 2006

Thanks for the Gore Vidal link, I hadn’t seen that yet… he is wonderful, as always.

25. pyrrho - 30 July 2006


the reason to care about the people of israel is because what is important is not that there is a proportional reserve of “pure” support, but that there are people that care about both. Only people that care about both are able to find diplomatic solutions to such thing, the whole, just care about one side fully, the other none, thing, is the heart of war.


if you see this… it’s google earth we need, if someone posts the data, I”LL make thep ointers and post them to the google earth bbs… this thing is free and uses all the google satelite imagery but better because it’s a stand alone application. you can mark things yourself and share them. It has beirut in high detail, but not the rest of lebanon…

26. marisacat - 30 July 2006

thanks pyrrho. Ever so enlightening. You always forget I am an adult. And quite capable of assigning my ”care” allotment.

As I said, people are not monolithic – and I know that well. My godmother is German and I have spent time in Germany my entire life, from the 50s onward.

But I will let US cash [and I am a tax payer] “care” for Israel. I have had it with vicious war.

“Diplomacy” is not about caring. It is an arm of government.

27. Mike the Mad Biologist - 22 August 2006

Watch Out For Those Draft-Dodging Elitists…

because you never know where they’ll show up.

28. Mike the Mad Biologist - 19 October 2006

I See Stupid People: The JD Hayworth Edition

Here’s a joke: a Republican staffer of a conservative Christian Republican goes into a synagogue and tells the congregation that his candidate is more Jewish than they are. It’s not very funny, and, sadly, it’s true. You see, Republican Congressm…

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