Saturday, August 27, 2005

Walter Reed Protest

Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC has treated military patients for nearly a century. It has helped heal 3,985 patients from Operation Iraqi Freedom, 1,050 of them wounded in battle in Iraq, including Army Pfc. Jessica Lynch. Many of them are amputees injured by improvised roadside bombs. Walter Reed treats them in a large orthopaedic ward there where amputees are fitted with prosthetics made on site.

Code Pink, a Marxist organization posing as a group of spontaneously organized concerned citizens, has been demonstrating weekly against the war outside Walter Reed in a gesture of monumental insensitivity to the wounded. They have drawn conservative counter-protestors. Last Friday night I visited the demonstration and took these photos.

The Code Pink protestors (the name was taken from hospital code for a kidnapped baby or it's a spoof of the color-coded terror alerts, depending on who you read) set up camp on the south side of the main entrance to Walter Reed on Georgia Avenue, about five miles north of the White House. Whatever you think of them, you must admit that by taking pink as their color, they have branded themselves accurately. Portraying themselves as pink is truth in packaging if ever I saw it.

According to their website, Code Pink portrays their demonstration as an effort to "to shed light on the plight of injured soldiers. ... These are vigils, not protests ...." However, it's quite transparently an anti-war protest to the casual observer. When talking to friendly media like the liberal Independent from Great Britain, Ellen Taylor, Code Pink spokeswoman, is more candid about the Walter Reed demonstration, "I think that a lot of information about this war is being kept from the public. That is what we are protesting about." A protest, not a vigil.

Code Pink makes wild claims of a military coverup at the hospital: "Gravely and seriously injured soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan arrive at Walter Reed for treatment late at night, under cover of darkness, so that the public does not become aware of the number of soldiers wounded and the severity of their injuries." This parrots the same charge by the Socialist Worker Online that wounded soldiers are "brought back to the U.S. under the cover of darkness to keep them hidden from the media and the public." Yet Walter Reed regularly makes public the number of wounded soldiers it treats, as cited above.

The Air Force rebuts the paranoid accusation by citing the need for patient processing and German restrictions on the airfield, Ramstein Air Base, from which some of the aeromedical evacuation flights are launched. Walter Reed spokeswoman Lyn Kurkal adds, "Night arrivals are beneficial to the patient, as they allow for a regular night of sleep, and then for doctors in Europe to make final determination on their ability to make the long flight, move patients from Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Germany, to Ramstein Air Base, Germany, and board the plane."

However, Ramstein is not the only source of flights to Walter Reed. Wounded troops are also flown in from a military hospital in Rota, Spain during the day. Only the flights from Germany arrive at night, which blows a hole in the Code Pink conspiracy theory.

There is also criticism that the military prohibits the media from photographing incoming patients from Iraq. Apparently, the Left does not consider that such photography would be intrusive and abusive. No family would want to see a photo of their shattered son arriving on a guerney, intubated, with a bag of bloody urine hanging over the side. But the Left wants to exploit such wounded soldiers as bloody hand puppets in their protest horror show.

Accusations of war profiteering is a rather standard sample from the Marxist panoply of rhetoric. Halliburton, Code Pink's capitalist bogeyman, is singled out for taking multi-billion dollar no-bid contracts from the government to provide goods and services in Iraq. However, bidding out war contracts is no way to win.

As any business knows that has bid on a government contract, it can take a year to go through the normal bidding process. That's barely tolerable in peacetime but it's insufferable in wartime when speed is of the essence. After Pearl Harbor, military contracting officers fanned out across America to kick start the construction of a network of war plants to win WWII. Some aircraft plants were moving fuselages down the production line within two months of their no-bid contract. They started up on handshake deals and let the paperwork follow. The result was massive war production with remarkable little corruption. Just like now.

Andrea Buffa of CODEPINK claims, "Halliburton is the poster child for war profiteering. The company has made billions off the killing in Iraq, and is ripping off American taxpayers and Iraqis, but they’re never held accountable." If you listen to socialist sources such as "The Nation", then Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root (KBR) "has been authorized to take profits of up to $490 million." However, here in the real world, war work has hardly been a cash cow for Halliburton, which is only making a teeny tiny 1.5% net profit on its Iraq contracts. For most businesses, 6% is a decent average net profit. I could make more for Halliburton depositing their working capital in my savings account. Another liberal myth busted.

The bottom line is that Halliburton supports our troops far more than Code Pink by driving the beans and bullets to the troops at great risk, serving them hot meals all day, and keeping the plumbing and air conditioning working in their barracks. What has Code Pink done?

This Code Pink sign conveys another bogus criticism, accusing America of shortchanging the treatment of our combat casualties. In fact, our wounded are getting the best care. For example, amputees are fitted with hundred thousand dollar prosthetics at Walter Reed. Even Mark Benjamin, of the left-leaning Salon online magazine, concedes after examining Walter Reed:

"Nothing I uncovered in my reporting ever suggested that troops with serious physical wounds -- amputees or gunshot victims -- were getting anything less than the care and attention they deserve. Indeed, the Pentagon and Walter Reed have allowed reporters and photographers to cover amputees recuperating at Walter Reed and Army doctors pulling out all the stops to save critically wounded troops on the sandy battlefields of Iraq. By all accounts, these are the things the Army does well. They represent "good news" stories for the Pentagon, showing the great lengths the military goes to care for downed soldiers."

OK, so this lefty chick was kinda cute. For a minute, I thought maybe I'd sidle over to her and start laying a line on her about what a bitchin' righteous dude that Che was and wasn't that "Motorcycle Diaries" a great movie and hey I'm a veteran too and I'm in favor of peace, just like you. Maybe more. But then I snapped out of it. Hey, I'm only flesh and blood. I have weak moments. Forgive me.

Some of the peace protestors just looked pissed off, like this one. Somehow it just seems wrong to be an angry pacifist. Of course, Code Pink people are not really pacifists who oppose war. They just oppose America in this war.

Code Pink has cleaned up its protest. They got rid of the flag-draped mock coffins that did not sit well with the wounded troops or really anyone with any sense. They ditched the really obnoxious signs like "Maimed for Lies" and "Enlist here and die for Halliburton." Lately Code Pink has been claiming that those offensive signs were brought by right-wing infiltrators to sully their protest, but it turns out one of the organizers of the Code Pink protest was carrying the "Maimed for Lies" sign. Oops. They have sanitized their demonstration quite a bit, probably due to unfavorable publicity. But you can't hold an anti-war protest without having some moonbats fly in, like this guy.

His sign reads, "The extreme right slanders grieving mothers, shoots up peaceful vigils, runs over crosses. How long 'til they start burning them again?"

It just wouldn't be a real peace rally unless the loony lefties call you a klan member or a Nazi or both. However, the folks who oppose Code Pink's wrongheaded hospital protest are not the jack-booted Nazis nor sheet-wearing klansmen of their fevered paranoid dreams.

Across the main entrance on the north side stood the counter-protestors of "Operation Red, White, Blue." One of the organizers, Lori-Ann Smith, writes in their flier that they come out specifically to oppose Code Pink: "To say that their actions are in poor taste is an understatement. We should all be defenders of free speech, but the issue here is that these people are protesting in front of a hospital where our soldiers are coming home from war- this is their time and place to begin to heal. They and their families need our compassion. It is unfair that they be tormented by angry citizens with a political agenda right outside their gates."

The counter-protestors were a moderately boisterous lot, with individual voices occassionally shouting challenges at the Code Pink crew: "Take your protest to the White House where the politicians are! This place is for heroes!" and "Pretty shameful to use the wounded in a protest!" and "Let the troops heal in peace!" and "Leave the wounded alone!" and "You're expoiting the injured!" and "It's pretty low when you take advantage of the wounded for your politics!" and "You don't speak for the veterans" and "This is a place of honor" and "You are shaming this place!" and "We'll make a deal with you - we'll meet in front of the White House in a week!" and "Where's your thank you sign?!"

The Code Pink people remained quiet for most of the night. Only once did one of them raise his voice to reply, weakly, "We love the troops." It was not very convincing to me or to anybody else.

The counter-protestors were notably unsympathetic to Code Pink, as seen in this sign: "Hey Pinkos, You can support our troops by getting jobs and paying taxes!"

Many of the counter-protestor crowd were girlfriends and wives of military men, like these cutie-pies. They were unabashedly for the troops.
By comparison, Code Pink sported no signs thanking the troops. Nor did any of their signs wish them to get well.

As I stood with the counter-protestors, a car paused at the curb before turning right into Walter Reed. A soldier patient sat in the passenger seat with a healed scar across the right of his face. "Thanks," he said quietly to the counter-protestors who went silent. "Thank you very much."

Across the street from the main gate was another, larger band of counter-protestors with more and bigger signs. Code Pink takes a dim view of the counterprotestors in its website. It considers the counter-protests as "right-wing attacks." In the world of Code Pink, dissenting from their view is an attack. No disagreement with their position is legitimate. Nobody has the moral right to oppose their anti-war protests. In the lefty world, only lefties have free speech. To them, counter-protesting seems terribly unfair and wrong. They are uncomfortable with having their own tactics turned against them. That's what makes it all so delicious for a conservative.

The Right has learned that we can not concede the high ground of the media to the Left. We must oppose protests and offer a countervailing message lest the leftist view prevail by default.

Code Pink held one corner of the intersection while the counter-protestors held the other three. I counted 22 Code Pink protestors with 52 counter-protestors opposing them, outnumbering them more than two to one.

To be honest, the response of passing drivers was mixed. Some honked wildly and waved at the counter-protestors. Others honked and gave the peace sign to the Code Pink protestors. DC is a completely Democratic political stronghold. Driving through the north side of the District, where Walter Reed sits, during the last election I did not see a single Bush sign anywhere. So the show of support for Code Pink was not much of a surprise, considering the location. If I had to make an estimate, perhaps I saw slightly more honks for the counter-protestors but it was really too close to call.

Many of the counter-protestors were associated with Free Republic, the conservative web site, who are often called Freepers. One of the Freepers complaints against Code Pink is their gift of $600,000 in cash, food and supplies including medicine, antiseptics, sutures and blood pressure readers to the terrorist haven of Fallujah, ostensibly for "humanitarian aid." In the words of Code Pink co-founder, Medea Benjamin, "I don't know of any other case in history in which the parents of fallen soldiers collected medicine ... for the families of the 'other side'." And therein lies the problem: aiding and comforting the enemy.

While Code Pink accuses Halliburton of being unaccountable to the American public, they have made no account of the disposition of their cash and supplies to Fallujah, whose inhabitants were actively sympathetic to the most vicious jihadis who made camp there. It was there that Zarqawi set up his Al Qaeda headquarters, where four contractors were burned and hung from a bridge, where innocent captives were taken for beheading in snuff videos. After the Marines cleaned out the jihadis, one Fallujan woman, Umm Marwan, said, "You see when the mujahedeen saw all the attacks, many, many men began becoming mujahedeen. The place is now filled with mujahedeen; there is not a neighborhood in Fallujah that doesn't have mujahedeen."

It's intuitively obvious that much of the $600,000 in aid delivered by Code Pink benefitted the most savage jihadists fighting America in Iraq. The bulk of the civilian population left Fallujah before the Marine assault. Only the jihadis remained to fight, cocksure that Allah would grant them victory. Consequently, only the wounded jihadis would have great need of medicine, antiseptic and sutures. Code Pink delivered what the jihadis needed to recover and fight again another day. One wonders how much of the cash went to buying parts for bombs to kill more of our GIs and Iraqi civilians.

The bottom line is that if Code Pink really supported the soldiers they would have delivered that $600,000 to them at Walter Reed rather than to the jihadists who are killing and maiming them.

And while they were there in Fallujah, why didn't Code Pink urge the foreign jihadis to go home, as they do our troops? Why don't they mount protests calling the Baathists Nazis, as they quite literally are? Instead of a bogus protest that American conservatives are burning crosses, why didn't they protest Fallujans for burning contractors? What anti-war protest did they mount in Fallujah to convince the suicide bombers to lay down their bombs? If Code Pink is against war in general, why do they protest only the American side? When you cut through their phony pacifist rhetoric and examine the recipients of their aid and the targets of their protest, they are indisputably anti-American.

One of the Code Pink people, a polite but mildly irritated middle-aged woman, singled me out for some reason to earnestly complain about this sign calling the Code Pink people Marxists. I politely disagreed, saying that it was a fair sign and gently pointed out that Medea Benjamin, the co-founder of Code Pink, was a Marxist with a long history of supporting enemies of America. She blinked hard a couple times. My impression was that she had never heard that before.

She changed the subject to WMDs, saying the CIA had said there weren't any in Iraq. I politely disagreed, pointing out that while large stocks of WMDs had not been found, dozens of chemical weapons had been found, as documented in the Duelfer report. I added that a binary chemical shell with about a gallon of Sarin nerve agent had been used to attack two of our guys, who survived because it had not been rigged properly. She blinked hard again. Hadn't heard that, either.

She returned to the other side of the street to pick up her pink banner again. Later, when I ambled over, she struck up a conversation again which her banner-mate joined in. As we talked about Iraq, I pointed out that Iraq had attacked us. That made both their heads snap back.

The first attack came when Saddam attempted to assassinate ex-President Bush. Neither one of them had heard of that. The Nice Lady's banner-mate said it never happenned.

I also mentioned that Iraq had launched hundreds of SAMs at our aircraft patrolling the no-fly zones over Iraq after the first Gulf War. That constituted a casus belli. I forgot to mention the bounties Saddam vowed to pay to any Iraqi who shot down an American flier. They didn't have much to say about that provocation.

Her more strident banner-mate cut in, demanding, "Can you accept that a Marxist can support America?" I allowed it could be possible in theory, though I hadn't seen it in practice. It seemed a rather revealing question. She kept ordering me where to stand while we chatted. One thing I've learned from going to "peace" rallies in DC is that the commies love to order people around in the public streets. They're control freaks.

It seemed amusing that the Nice Code Pink Lady who complained about being called a Marxist didn't know there was a Marxist holding the other end of her protest banner. My impression of the few Code Pinkers I chatted with was that they were heavily invested emotionally in their cause but they had not made much of an intellectual investment in it. They didn't know current events relating to the war published in the newspaper and broadcast on the news. My speculation is that they acquired their opinions by word of mouth from their circle of radicalized friends. They find it difficult and frustrating to talk to people who don't share their frame of reference. They were unaware of the sinister character of their leadership and its connections.

This lack of intellectual preparation of their positions contributes to their desultory style of argument. Their positions are slogan-thin. When successfully challenged on one, they are unable to defend it in any depth, and hop to another topic, another slogan. They never concede a position, they simply retreat to another one, then another and another. In that sense, a Code Pinker's mind resembles the back bumper of the typical lefty's Volvo, a collection of bumper stickers for various causes. They adopt poses, not thoughtful positions.

They seemed naive, without much experience of the world. I suppose that makes it easier to subscribe to the cartoonish conspiracy theories they hold of the military and business world. They came across as well-intentioned but wrongheaded. All of them were polite and civil, which is not the case at all "peace" rallies. But they are very wrong to stage their protest in front of Walter Reed.

About a quarter to nine, a bus full of military patients pulled into the entrance. They take the wounded guys out for dinner and shows on Friday night. Lots of places around town give them free tickets and meals. The counter-protestors broke into a loud chant: "USA! USA! USA!" Some of the wounded flipped Code Pink the bird through the bus windows.

Code Pink lost the revolutionary spirit a few minutes after 9 PM and decamped from their perch on the main gate to leave this protest battlefield to the Freepers, who had enough adrenaline pumping to go on for hours more, from what I could see. They've been out here for eighteen Fridays so far and look game to be there for the duration.

They posed for a class photo and departed for home in triumph.

*** UPDATE ***

Tantor returns to the Code Pink protest a month later on September 23, 2005.

Friday, August 26, 2005

If You Protest, We Will Come

Counter-protestors are flocking to Crawford to oppose the anti-Americans supporting grieving mom and lefty moonbat Cindy Sheehan in her protest outside Bush's ranch. For many patriots and protestors, it's Vietnam all over again, dredging up the same emotions, with one difference. The patriots aren't going to turn the other cheek this time.

Kristinn Taylor of, a conservative Web site helping the counter-protestors:

"This time, (supporters of the war are) speaking out because they don't want to see happen to their sons and daughters what happened to the people in their generation who served in the military."

Tantor has peered into his crystal ball and predicts the protestors are opening a vast barrel of bad feeling from mainstream America that will inundate them in bad press in the days to come.

Putting The Casualties In Perspective

Joe Roche of the US Army puts the casualties from Iraq and Afghanistan in perspective:

"From 1983 to 1996, more than 18,000 soldiers died. That averages to more than 1,300 a year, far more than have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan each year. Yes, that was mostly from accidents, drunk driving and other mishaps. Yet, while protesters in Crawford, Texas and elsewhere would have you think that our military can't survive with the low casualty rates of this war, I wonder why they were willing to accept the much higher peacetime casualty rates of the past? We lost around 3,000 innocent people on September 11, and with four years of war and the toppling of two regimes, we haven't lost that many in combat."

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Kurilla Is Shot

Michael Yon continues his eyewitness reporting from the battlefield in Mosul with this hair-raising account of close quarters combat in an alley with the evil terrorist bastards. This time our guys won, but they paid a price. The heroic Lieutenant Colonel Kurilla got shot, but went down fighting.
"The Commander and the terrorist were both being prepped for surgery, when LTC Kurilla said, "Tell Major Bieger to call my wife so she doesn't get a call from the Army first." But someone gave the Commander a cell phone, and I heard Kurilla talking to his wife, Mary Paige, saying something like, "Honey, there has been a little shooting here. I got hit and there was some minor soft tissue damage." The X-ray on the board nearby showed his femur snapped in half. "I'll be fine. Just some minor stuff." That poor woman."

The photo is of CSM Robert Prosser standing over the terrorist sumbitch who shot Kurilla. Prosser beat him in hand to hand combat and flexicuffed him.

It makes you wonder how many heroic war stories are not told because the defeatist mainstream media only reports the insurgent victories, never our own.

*** UPDATE ***

Lt Col Kurilla is recuperating from his wounds inthe Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Washington. I would guess that get well and thank you notes would reach him at Lt. Col. Erik Kurilla, C/O Madigan Army Medical Center, Building 9040, Fitzsimmons Drive, Tacoma, WA 98431.

I note without surprise that the heroic Lt. Col. Kurilla is a 1988 graduate of West Point.

Code Pink Taunts Wounded Vets

Just when you thought the Left could not sink any lower, they start digging a deeper hole. Code Pink Women For Peace, in a vicious display of contempt for wounded veterans of Iraq, have set up weekly protests in front of Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC, where seriously wounded soldiers from Iraq are treated. They protest at the main entrance on Friday nights, picked as the time more families visit their wounded family, to set up signs saying: "Maimed for Lies","Enlist here and die for Halliburton." They chant slogans: ""George Bush kills American soldiers." They set up mock coffins draped in the American flag.

The coffins disturb the wounded veterans the most. Kevin Pannell, a soldier in the US Army's First Cavalry Division, had both legs amputated after being ambushed with grenades near Baghdad last year: "We went by there one day and I drove by and [the anti-war protesters] had a bunch of flag-draped coffins laid out on the sidewalk. That, I thought, was probably the most distasteful thing I had ever seen. You know that 95 percent of the guys in the hospital bed lost guys whenever they got hurt and survivors' guilt is the worst thing you can deal with. We don't like them and we don't like the fact that they can hang their signs and stuff on the fence at Walter Reed. [The wounded veterans] are there to recuperate. Once they get out in the real world, then they can start seeing that stuff (anti-war protests). I mean Walter Reed is a sheltered environment and it needs to stay that way."

Bill Floyd, of the D.C. chapter of, is one of the conservative counter-protestors that oppose Code Pink's protest: "[The anti-war protesters] should not be demonstrating at a hospital. A hospital is not a suitable location for an anti-war demonstration. I believe they are tormenting our wounded soldiers and they should just leave them alone."

However, Code Pink protestors are unapologetic for the protests and absurdly claim that it helps the wounded vets.

The co-founder of Code Pink, Medea Benjamin, has a long history of supporting America's enemies, including the Viet Cong, the Sandinistas, the Taliban, Saddam's Iraq, and Fidel Castro. Under her direction, Code Pink works closely with Communist front organizations such as the Not In Our Name and ANSWER who oppose the US in everything.

The lefties have learned from Vietnam that spitting on soldiers does not advance their cause with the American public. They think they can pose as supporting the troops and fool everyone. However, their hatred for the military trips them up with protests like this where they can not stop themselves from going too far and showing their real feelings. And they have enough contempt for the American public to think that they can talk their way out of it with some empty rhetoric pretending to support the troops.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

An Answer For Cindy Sheehan

Scott Ott of Scrappleface writes a draft answer for President Bush to send to Cindy Sheehan, grieving mother and crazed lefty anti-war protestor:

Dear Mrs. Sheehan,
You have asked me to identify the noble cause for which your son died. I have not answered you personally out of respect for the nobility of your son's sacrifice.

Being president forces me into the spotlight, but I would rather stand in the shadows of men like Casey Sheehan.

Directing national attention on my response to your protest creates a distraction from what matters. The focus of our attention, and our admiration, should rest on people like Casey Sheehan, who stand in the breach when evil threatens to break out and consume a helpless people.

The running story on the news networks should be the valiant efforts of our troops -- the merchants of mercy who export freedom and import honor. They trade their own lives for the sake of others.

As a result, we live in a nation where a woman can camp outside of the president's house and verbally attack the president for weeks on end without fear of prison, torture or death. And the number of nations where such protest is possible has multiplied thanks to the work of our military.

You ask for what noble cause your son died?

In a sense he died so that people like you, who passionately oppose government policies, can freely express that opposition. As you camp in Crawford, you should take off your shoes, for you stand on holy ground. This land was bought with the blood of men like your son.

Now, 25 million Iraqis cry out to enjoy the life you take for granted. Most of them will never use their freedom to denigrate the sacrifice of those who paid for it. But once liberty is enshrined in law, they will be free to do so. And when the Iraqis finally escape their incarceration, hope will spread throughout that enslaved region of the world, eventually making us all safer and more free.

The key is in the lock of the prison door. Bold men risk everything to turn it.

Mrs. Sheehan, everyone dies. But few experience the bittersweet glory of death with a purpose -- death that sets people free and produces ripples of liberty hundreds of years into the future.

Casey Sheehan died that freedom might triumph over bondage, hope over despair, prosperity over misery. He died restoring justice and mercy. He lived and died to help to destroy the last stubborn vestiges of the Dark Ages.

To paraphrase President Lincoln, the world will little note nor long remember what you and I say here. But it can never forget what Casey Sheehan did during his brief turn on earth. If we are wise, we will take increased devotion to that cause for which he gave the last full measure of devotion.

Our brave warriors have blazed a trail. They have enstrusted the completion of the task to those of us they left behind. Let's, you and I, resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.

Let's finish the work that they have thus far so nobly advanced.

George W. Bush

Bathing Chadors

From the fashion capital of the world, Riyadh, comes the newest Saudi fashions to hit the beach: bathing chadors! Forget bikinis and bothersome tan lines. This fashionable coverall will keep you safe from the sun's rays and the lecherous gaze of infidel dogs while making your local Islamic religious police smile. It comes in six colors, only $59. Order here.

Those Wacky Wahhabis

From deep in the heart of darkness in the evil Saudi Arabian totalitarian state, home of the ultra-stupid and bloodthirsty Wahhabi Islamic cult, comes the news of husbands who have never seen their wive's veiled faces in a half century of marriage.

Al-Jazyia, a twenty-something mother of three, said, "I received only primary education and since the day I got married, my husband, who happens to be my cousin, has never seen my face, neither before nor after the marriage. I make sure to wear my veil day and night, so that there isn t any chance to see my face."

Not only are there husbands who have never seen their wives faces, there are brothers who have never seen their sister's faces, sons who have never seen their mothers faces. Forget about seeing the faces of female aunts and cousins. However, for some women, even those customs are not radical enough. They won't even show their faces to other women.

Says Al-Jazyia,"This tradition has been part of my life since the day I opened my eyes on the world. Believe it or not, I have never seen the faces of even my closest female relatives my cousins and aunts. ... One day a big fight broke out between two women just because one of them tried to uncover her face. Thank God the fight didn't develop beyond that point. Otherwise, she would have been punished by the tribe. ... (Covering my face) is a hundred times better than mixing with men and painting our faces with make-up."

Umm Majed, a sixty-something housewife in her mid-60s, is proud that her husband and her children have no idea what her face looks like, and brooks no questioning of custom: "Why do you interfere in our personal affairs? We have been brought up to respect this particular tradition. It never even occurred to me to ask why I have to cover my face in the presence of my father, brothers and my husband whom I married 40 years ago. For God s sake, leave us alone. We are content with our way of life."

Umm Fawaz, a 50 something wife, said she only uncovers her face after her hubby and kids have left the house, "Only then I can feel free to change my clothes and remove my veil. One day I walked over to the living room with my face uncovered. I never knew my husband was sitting there watching the TV. He saw my face."

Her husband screamed at the sight of her unveiled face.

"I ran to my room and I locked myself up for several hours. When I came out, he was very angry at me. It took him several months to get over it. Even in my wild dreams, I could never think of uncovering my face."

Rushdie Must Die

Iran's Revolutionary Guards have announced that the death fatwa placed on Salman Rushdie's head is still in effect. Rushdie was sentenced to die in 1989 by Shiite fruitcake Ayatollah Khomeini for writing "The Satanic Verses," which was declared blasphemous. The Revolutionary Guards say only Khomeini can retract the fatwa. Fortunately for mankind but unfortunately for Rushdie, Khomeini kicked the bucket shortly after putting the hit out on Rushdie.

Say the Revolutionary Guards, "The day will come when they will punish the apostate Rushdie for his scandalous acts and insults against the Koran and the Prophet (Mohammed)."

Khomeini's successor as Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, agrees that Rushdie must die: "They talk of respect for all religions but they support an apostate worthy of death like Rushdie." The Khordad Foundation, an Islamic charity, says that the $2.8m bounty they put up for Rushdie's death remains ready to be awarded.

However, in another account, Salman Rushdie said he hadn't had any security for the last seven years. This may be an example of the disconnect between the rhetoric of the Islamic nutcases who run Iran and the ordinary Iranians who have grown contemptuous of their leaders and lack enthusiasm for death threats which keep them cut off from Western civilization.

Still, one is struck by the bloodthirsty face Islamic clerics of all stripes show the public from every Middle Eastern country.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Same Country, Different Dreams

Kelly Bulkeley, a dream researcher who teaches at the University of California at Berkeley, has been studying the difference between liberal and conservative dreams. Her findings:
"Conservatives sleep more soundly than liberals, and they have fewer dreams. In addition, the dreams of liberals are more "bizarre.""
Liberal women don't sleep well at all, remember more of their dreams, and dream a lot about homosexuality. Conservative men sleep like rocks, don't remember their dreams, and never have gay dreams.

Bulkeley finds that conservatives had more nightmares during Clinton's administration, but fewer nightmares when Bush was elected President. By contrast, liberal nightmares increased dramatically under President Bush.

Heh, heh, heh.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Britain Defeats Gas Attack On Parliament

Scotland Yard has defeated an Al Qaeda plan to attack Parliament with sarin nerve agent by reading the Muslim fanatics coded email. Evidently, a turncoat gave them the key to the code and the plot unravelled from there, thank goodness.

Put America First

The International Freedom Center (IFC) wants to build a museum at the site of the former World Trade Center where 2,749 people were murdered en masse by radical Muslims. The IFC has drawn on the International Coalition of Historic Site Museums of Conscience for advice about how the museum should interpret the atrocity. Their advice is: "Don't put America first."

They also worry about what religious Muslims would think if the museum was to portray the Sep 11 attack as a criticism of Islam. They claim that people in Bangladesh feel America has violated their human rights. They think the museum may suffer from telling the September 11 story from an American point of view.

There's more. If the US builds a new tower to replace the destroyed World Trade Center, then "the U.S. reasserts its power in an arrogant way. Does this mean the U.S. will not only build the biggest building, but also define freedom for the world?"

That's right, lefty pinheads, America needs to define freedom for the world because, so far, nobody else is much interested in spreading freedom around the world. Certainly not the Wahhabi fanatics who knocked down the World Trade Center. It won't get done without us.

And when we build a museum over a mass grave of Americans murdered by Muslim crazies, we do indeed need to put America first.

Evil Clown Convicted

Dennis Hinkamp was a volunteer working at the Burning Man counterculture festival in the Black Rock desert of Nevada. On the last day of the festival as the crowd surged toward the tall wooden man soon to be set afire, he was riding his bike away when he was jumped by a clown, who pushed him off his bicycle. When Hinkamp tried to stand up, the clown punched him in the face and rode away on the stolen bike. The attacker blended into the crowd, all of whom looked pretty much like clowns themselves. Poor Hinkamp broke his arm, requiring two plates implanted to fix it.

The clown was tracked via the Internet to a sect of evil clowns called Anarchoclowns. The culprit, Johnny Goodman, a nursing student in a hospital in Washington state, was convicted and ordered to pay $29,000 restitution.

Another Democrat Bites The Dust

Blogger Scott Randolph tells how he was finally pushed to the edge, then over:

I actually felt myself become a republican today. It was around 10am, when I read the latest update of the Cindy Sheehan saga in I then shot over to read some blogs about it, and perused the comments in some of them, which was nothing but a long series of petty (albeit entertaining) partisan bickering.

Then it happend. The good little democrat in me tied the little noose around his neck and jumped off the stool. He just couldn’t take it anymore.

Take what? The whining. The constant whining by the extreme left about the reasons for war, the incompetence of this administration, and how we’ve all been lied to, and how we should pull out of Iraq immediately, because, *gulp* our soldiers were in danger.
If the lefty radicals continue their war on Bush, and proxy war on America, eventually all the sensible Democrats will jump ship. Burning the flag will go out of style for them.

Re-Wilding America

Genius scientists from Cornell University want to bring back megafauna (big animals) to America to make it more like the Pleistocene era of ten thousand years ago, when cheetahs hunted antelope-like pronghorn and camels roamed free across North America.

The Cornellians complain that human arrival on the continent 13,000 years ago led to the extinction of many animals, creating holes in the Pleistocenian ecosystem. For example, there is no natural predator left to eat the remaining pronghorn. They propose to plug those holes by setting loose wild African cheetahs in southwest America. Other wild animals they want to set loose in American are feral horses, wild asses, camels, elephants, and lions.

They claim this re-wilding of America will not only save endangered animals from Africa but create jobs in America in land management and eco-tourism.

Josh Donlan of Cornell University, worries about whether Americans will like lions and cheetahs and elephants running around their back yards:

"Obviously, gaining public acceptance is going to be a huge issue, especially when you talk about reintroducing predators. There are going to have to be some major attitude shifts. That includes realising predation is a natural role, and that people are going to have to take precautions."

In other words, people are going to need to get used to the occassional stray child being eaten by lions. But once they get past that, re-wilding should be seen as a brilliant idea and the return to the Pleistocene era as an improvement on modernity.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Not In Our Name

Spc. Kyle Andrew Griffin was killed in a truck accident on a road between Mosul and Tikrit on May 30, 2003. His father, Ronald Griffin, gives his rebuttal to Cindy Sheehan's anti-Bush shennanigans:

I lost a son in Iraq and Cindy Sheehan does not speak for me.

I grieve with Mrs. Sheehan, for all too well I know the full measure of the agony she is forever going to endure. I honor her son for his service and sacrifice. However, I abhor all that she represents and those who would cast her as the symbol for parents of our fallen soldiers.


We refuse to allow Cindy Sheehan to speak for all of us. Instead, we ask you to learn the individual stories. They are glorious. Honor their memories.

Honor their service. Never dishonor them by giving in. They never did.
It's worth reading the whole thing.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Jean Charles De Menezes

Jean Charles De Menezes, an electrician from Brazil, left his apartment in Scotia Road, South London, at 9:30am to catch the subway to a job. Undercover police surveilling his apartment complex, the home of suspected Tube bombers, mistakenly identified him as one of the perpetrators, Hussain Osman. When he ran to catch his train, officers grabbed him and shot him seven times in the head, once in the shoulder. Three shots missed.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Bombing For Dollars

StrategyPage has an interesting rundown about how IED gangs work in Iraq. Most of the IEDs deployed are found before they can be employed. If you run StrategyPage's numbers, it looks like it takes about 48 IEDs to kill one US soldier.

The IED gangs are entrepreneurial businesses who will work for anyone, Saddam's old comrades, jihadis, whoever. The IED business is fueled by cash, most likely by the huge amount of cash Saddam's regime looted from Iraq during their reign. There are plenty of unemployed Iraqis who will do anything, ANYTHING, for a buck. Cut the cash flow and the flow of IEDs would wither away.

Says StrategyPage:

The bombs are built and placed by one of several dozen independent gangs, each containing smaller groups of people with different skills. At the head of each gang is a guy called “the money man.” That tells you something about how all this works. Nearly all the people involved with IED gangs are Sunni Arabs, and most of them once worked for Saddam. The gangs hire themselves out to terrorist groups (usually al Qaeda affiliated), as well as Baath Party or Sunni Arab groups that believe the Sunni Arabs should be running the country. You got the money, these gangs got the bombs.

The “money man,” naturally, calls the shots. He hires, individually or as groups, the other specialists. These include scouts (who find the most effective locations to put the bombs), the bomb makers, the emplacers (who place the bomb) and the trigger team, that actually sets the bomb off, and often includes an ambush team, to attack the damaged vehicles with AK-47s and RPGs. The trigger team also usually includes a guy with a video camera, who records the operation. Attacks that fail, are also recorded, for later examination for things that could be improved.

The specialists most in demand are the emplacers. This is the most dangerous job, as coalition and Iraqi troops watch carefully for IEDs being placed, and shoot fast, and to kill, if they see a bomb being planted. Needless to say, the highest casualties are among the emplacers.

Many of these specialist teams are independents, and hire themselves out to the money man who pays the best, or has a reputation for not losing people. Some of these teams have been found advertising on the Internet. Men in each team get from $50 to several hundred bucks for each IED worked on.

Warm Weather Warriors

Michael Yon, reporting from Iraq with our troops, notes an odd fact about the Baathists, or Former Regime Elements (FRE), fighting our forces to reconquer Iraq:

It's a fact here on the Iraqi battleground—though seldom mentioned—that the majority of FRE insurgents are climate-sensitive. They almost never attack when it’s cold, raining or even muddy. As a rule, if conditions are such that the Little League baseball game back home would be canceled due to inclement weather, these FRE insurgents will stay home and wait for the skies to clear.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Waiting For Allah

From the New York Times comes the story of Zeeshan Siddique, a 25 year old British Muslim of Indian descent from a London suburb, which he fondly recalls as a "vital organ of the minions of the devil," waiting in Peshawar to be a suicide bomber. He wrote a diary while waiting to meet Allah and get his seventy-two, count 'em, seventy-two virgins.

"All alone in a strange land. I can trust no-one except Allah."

The life of a jihadi was not all glory for the dimwitted Siddique: "Im constantly laughed at & ridiculed." He did not much care for his accommodations: "I can't live in filth unlike u animals." And he hated his Pakistani neighbors, who are "dirty geezers," and a Pakistani store owner who is a "monkey con artist." Siddique was furious at these Pakistanis who "claim 2 b Muslim" but "don't get it thru there thik heads" that it is their "fard," (religious duty), to wage holy war on the infidels. He hates Pakistan's president, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, better known to Siddique as Satan. He doesn't much care for the Prime Minister of Iraq, Ibrahim al-Jaafari, either, whom he calls "the dog of the hell fire."

Worst of all, he misses his parents but the only way he can spend eternity with them is martyrdom. The homesick Siddique soldiers on: "Do not waver or become weak. This is the only way I can be reunited with Mummy and Daddy."

Even so, Siddique had his happy moments listening to BBC radio tell of the death of "Yankee pigs" in Iraq and Afghanistan. He got a chuckle out of the deaths of Prince Rainier of Monaco and writer Saul Bellow. He gloats, "Excellent news. May Allah curse them." Best of all, Pope John Paul II died. Siddique gleefully wrote that "Allah will throw him in hell."

Siddique ran with a bad crowd, becoming friends with one of the wannabe July 21 bombers who failed to kill any infidels in the London Tube and friends with another Brit who became a hero of Islam by blowing himself up in a Tel Aviv nightclub in 2003.

Siddique mourns the superiority of those damned infidels but finds hope they'll be slaughtered in the end: "Indeed the kafrs do possess everything at the moment but for how long. Indeed the armies of Islam are coming."

Sadly for Siddique's dreams, what came were not armies of Islam but Pakistani security who raided his hole and dragged him off to prison, where he now will be imposing his long-awaited Islamic state on the cockroaches and bedbugs in his cell.

Facing The Families Of the Fallen

From Newsweek, of all places, comes a fair report of President Bush's meetings with families of soldiers killed in Iraq:

Privately, Bush has met with about 900 family members of some 270 soldiers killed in Iraq or Afghanistan. The conversations are closed to the press, and Bush does not like to talk about what goes on in these grieving sessions, though there have been hints.
Bush routinely asks to see the families of the fallen when he visits military bases, which he does about 10 times a year. It does not appear that the White House or the military makes any effort to screen out dissenters or embittered families, though some families decline the invitation to meet with Bush. Most families encourage the president to stay the course in Iraq.
The most telling—and moving—picture of Bush grieving with the families of the dead was provided by Rachel Ascione, who met with him last summer. Her older brother, Ron Payne, was a Marine who had been killed in Afghanistan only a few weeks before Ascione was invited to meet with Bush at MacDill Air Force Base, near Tampa, Fla.

Ascione wasn't sure she could restrain herself with the president. She was feeling "raw." "I wanted him to look me in the eye and tell me why my brother was never coming back, and I wanted him to know it was his fault that my heart was broken," she recalls. The president was coming to Florida, a key swing state, in the middle of his re-election campaign. Ascione was worried that her family would be "exploited" by a "phony effort to make good with people in order to get votes."

Ascione and her family were gathered with 18 other families in a large room on the air base. The president entered with some Secret Service agents, a military entourage and a White House photographer. "I'm here for you, and I will take as much time as you need," Bush said. He began moving from family to family. Ascione watched as mothers confronted him: "How could you let this happen? Why is my son gone?" one asked. Ascione couldn't hear his answer, but soon "she began to sob, and he began crying, too. And then he just hugged her tight, and they cried together for what seemed like forever."
Before Bush left the meeting, he paused in the middle of the room and said to the families, "I will never feel the same level of pain and loss you do. I didn't lose anyone close to me, a member of my family or someone that I love. But I want you to know that I didn't go into this lightly. This was a decision that I struggle with every day."

As he spoke, Ascione could see the grief rising through the president's body. His shoulder slumped and his face turned ashen. He began to cry and his voice choked. He paused, tried to regain his composure and looked around the room. "I am sorry, I'm so sorry," he said.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

The Muslim Boys Of London

Dwayne Daniels, 21, is a gang-banger from the bad side of London, part of the Muslim Boys gang which makes its living from robberies and murders. He was recruited by Marcus Grant, 20, with the pitch, "Bin Laden showed people what Muslims can do, he made a big scene, he was in the papers."

Not all the recruits are voluntary. Says one Muslim Boy, "If you not down with Muslim, we visit your home, maybe strip you naked in front of your f****** mother, we put a gun in your mouth. We give you three days, then if you not down with it, we f****** blow . . ." At least one young guy who refused to convert was shot several times in the head and left dead in a park.

Grant is an uneducated but cunning kid who bought the Muslim Boys line attacking the Bible, "They said it has been rewritten 10 times, and it’s being rewritten again. They said, ‘It’s not God writing it, so who is? It is just lies’." Christians were dirty, they said.

Islam provided a good foundation for gangster operations. Grant says, "They said the Koran says you can take things from people. And they said they were cleaning up the streets by killing drug dealers. And when that happens a few times you have other criminals thinking it might be sensible to join Islam or they’ll be killed too."

There is a subculture of these kids, who hail from broken homes with absent or negligent parents, for whom Islam provides power and structure in their otherwise empty and futile lives. The step from gangster to terrorist is a small one.

London Bombers Were Flying Solo

British authorities are beginning to believe that the Muslim terror cell that killed 52 innocent victims and wounded 700 was not connected to the July 21 terror cell which screwed its attack up. Neither cell is connected to Al Qaeda. There is no evidence that they were assisted by an outside mastermind.

The July 7 cell appears to have been organized and radicalized by the oldest member, Mohammad Sidique Khan, 30. The other three were young and dumb followers: Shahzad Tanweer, 22, Hasib Hussain, 18, and Germaine Lindsay, 19. It is not known where Khan acquired the skill to build bombs, but he could have picked it up on the Internet.

The good news is that it debunks the Al Qaeda boogeyman. Al Qaeda lacks the ability to run terror operations. Instead, it is lending its name to Islamist terror franchises like Zarqawi's in Iraq and opportunistically capitalizing on terror attacks such as the London Tube bombings to bolster the vigor of its brand, falsely claiming them as its own.

The bad news is that this means terror cells are spontaneously generating in the Pakistani Muslim population in England, something like poisonous mushrooms, rather than being seeded from outside. That points to a sickness in that dysfunctional population. While such isolation limits the damage the cells can do, it also makes them nearly impossible to detect and stop.

Oompa Loompa Imposter Outed

US citizen Ezzy Dame, 57, 3'11" tall, has been claiming for thirty years to have played an Oompa Loompa in the 1971 movie, "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory." His little charade came to a crashing halt when Rusty Goffe of England unveiled him as an imposter. Says Goffe:

"There were only 10 original Oompa Loompas. Six English guys, one English girl, one Turkish, one Maltese and one German. Unfortunately, six of them are now dead. And the girl is in a retirement home here in England. She is very old and now blind so I do like to keep her privacy. All are in poor health. I hope you understand. I guess Ezzy is a nice guy, but we have to be loyal and truthful to the fans."
Dame confessed to the hoax, saying his agent had talked him into padding his resume to get work. Acting parts for little people were scarce to come by. Once he made his boast, he had to spin an entire web of lies to maintain appearances.

This is the first case of a phony Oompa Loompa uncovered in America. Authorities refused to speculate on how many fraudulent Oompa Loompas are at large.

Remember The World Trade Center

This article from the Guardian features excerpts of emergency workers who witnessed the atrocities at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Firefighter Maureen McArdle-Schulman tells what she saw when she arrived at the WTC:
"Somebody yelled something was falling. We didn't know if it was desks coming out. It turned out it was people coming out, and they started coming out one after the other ... we saw the jumpers coming. We didn't know what it was at first, but then the first body hit and then we knew what it was. And they were just like constant ... I was getting sick. I felt like I was intruding on a sacrament. They were choosing to die and I was watching them and shouldn't have been. So me and another guy turned away and looked at a wall and we could still hear them hit."
The estimates of the number of people who forced to jump or were blown out of the World Trade Center ranges from fifty to two hundred.

All Options Are On The Table

President Bush told Israel's Channel One TV last Saturday that military force was an option to make Iran give up its covert nuclear program to develop atom bombs. Said Bush:
"As I say, all options are on the table. The use of force is the last option for any president and you know, we've used force in the recent past to secure our country. ... In all these instances we want diplomacy to work and so we're working feverishly on the diplomatic route and we'll see if we're successful or not."
That should give the mad mullahs of Teheran pause for thought, if they ever indulge in that pastime. We occupy countries on the east and west of Iran: Iraq and Afghanistan. We have forward air bases in nearby friendly countries like Turkmenistan. Iranian oil is forced to travel through the easily stoppered Strait of Hormuz. That's quite a lot of disadvantages for Iran to take a belligerent course of action.

And then there's the character of President Bush. When he says war is an option if need be, you don't need to wonder what he means by "is." The character of Bush is worth another ten divisions and ten air wings and a naval fleet in this confrontation.

However, on the negative side of the balance, it is uncertain that military force short of invasion and occupation will stop the Iranian atom bomb program. The Iranians are not as dumb as the Iraqis, who centralized their atom bomb development in one spot, Osirak, which was easily obliterated by an Israeli air strike. The Iranians have dispersed their nuclear research program over three hundred sites, twenty of which are hardened. That reduces the probability of success of a coup de main from the air, as a war game funded by the Atlantic Monthly magazine leads one to believe. You just can't be sure of taking out three hundred targets simultaneously. Experience in Iran shows that there are some buried bunkers that our penetrating bombs can not reach.

It looks like, despite our sabre-rattling, the mad mullahs are going to get their Bomb. Nothing good can come of that.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Brigitte's Story

Brigitte Gabriel is a Christian native of Lebanon who went on to be a news anchor of World News for Middle East television and the founder of As a child, she survived the Muslim assault on Lebanese Christians. She now lectures on the Middle East conflict.

She was raised to hate the Jews and Israel:

"Even though I was raised in a Christian country, it was still an Arabic country trying to please its neighbors, the Arab Muslims. Even the Christian private school I went to was effected. When we studied the Bible, we only studied the New Testament. I never saw the Old Testament or heard anything about it, because it was considered the enemy's bible. All I heard was Israel is Satan, Israel the devil, Israelis are demons, and they are the source of the problem in the Middle East. The Jews are evil, they are unstoppable and they want to control the world. I heard nothing but hatred toward the Jews."
When Jordan kicked the troublemaking Palestinians out in Black September of 1970 they set up shop in Lebanon along with other Muslim radicals to form a majority in the Christian country. They wanted the Christians out.

"When the Moslems and Palestinians declared Jihad on the Christians in 1975 we didn't even know what that word meant. We had taken them into our country, allowed them to study side by side with us, in our schools and universities. We gave them jobs, shared with them our way of life. We didn't realize the depth of their hatred to us as infidels. They looked at us as the enemy not as neighbors, friends, employers and colleagues.

A lot of Muslims pored in from other Muslim countries like Iran -- the founder and supporter of Hezbollah, one of the leading terrorist organizations in the world today. They came from Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. The Lebanese civil war was not between the Lebanese, it was a holly war declared on the Christians by the Muslims of the Middle East.

They started massacring the Christians, city after city."
They were between a rock and a hard place. Muslims in front. Israel in back. Which way should they go? They bet their lives on Israel.

One day when I was 13 one of our soldiers warned us that we are no longer able to fight and we are going to be attacked viciously that night. He wished us a merciful death as he left. Knowing we were going to be slaughtered that night I put on my Easter dress because I wanted to look pretty when I was dead, knowing that there would be nobody to prepare me for burial. I stood in my dress in front of the mirror crying as my mother combed my long hair and tied a white ribbon in it. I told her: “please I don't want to die I’m only 13.”

My town was 2 and half miles from the Israeli boarder. We in our Christian town were faced with the combined Muslim and Palestinian forces waiting to slaughter us. We knew our fate, knowing what they have done to other Christian towns and cities in the rest of Lebanon. To our back was Israel. The enemy, Satan, the demon possessed Jews. We had no where to turn but one way, to the devil Israel. After all we knew the Jews wouldn’t slaughter us because we had more shared values with them than we had with the Moslems. Under the cover of darkness, few men from our town went to the border, flagged down an Israeli boarder patrol, explained the situation and begged for help.

Israel agreed to help the Christians. Israel became our lifeline. ... The only reason we stayed alive is because Israel came into Lebanon and drove the Muslims away from the surrounding hills and set up positions in our town to protect us."
Nevertheless, they had to retreat into a store room turned bomb shelter to avoid the shelling and crawl to a spring under sniper fire for water. One day, their luck ran out and a shell came crashing down into their bomb shelter, wounding her mother. She took her mother in cabs to an Israeli hospital.

"We went into the emergency room and I was shocked at such a scene. There were many wounded people lying all over the place. Israeli soldiers, Lebanese Muslims, Christians and even Palestinians brought in from Lebanon! I was stunned at such a scene. I thought to myself why the heck are the Israelis helping the Muslims and the Palestinians? I am a Christian, I am their friend, but why are they helping the Palestinian and the Moslems? Little did I know about the principles and values of the Israeli people? The doctors treated everyone according to their injury. The doctor treated my mother before he treated the Israeli soldier lying next to her because her injury was more severe. They did not see religion, they didn’t see political affiliation, they did not see nationality, they saw people in need and they helped.


While I was standing there, I felt someone tapping on my shoulder. I looked up to see a nurse standing next to me. She asked me: "You are new here aren’t you?” I said yes they just brought my mother to this room. She put her arm around me and looked into my face and said don’t worry we’ll take good care of her, everything will be fine."

I broke out crying, I never felt such compassion and love. For the first time in my life I experienced a human quality that I know my culture would not have shown to their enemy. I experienced the values of the Israelis who were able to love their enemy in their most trying moments. That nurse didn’t even know if I was a Christian, a Moslem or a Palestinian. I spent 22 days at that hospital, those days changed my life and the way I believe information, the way I listen to the radio or to television. I realized I was sold a fabricated lie by my government about the Jews and Israel that was so far from reality. I knew for fact that if I was a Jew standing in an Arab hospital I would be lynched and thrown over to the grounds as shouts of joy of Allahu Akbar, God is great would echo through the hospital and the surrounding streets."
Her mother was placed in a room with other Lebanese women, a Muslim and a Druze.

"The Moslem woman who was in the room with my mother stayed in the hospital for about 12 days. And even after 10 days the doctors would come and change her bandages and check on her in their morning tour, as they would be leaving the room she would have the evil look on her face and say: "I hate you all. I wish you were all dead." For the first time in my life I saw evil. I realized that this Muslim couldn’t love the Jews even after they saved her life. And when you are unable to be grateful to the people that saved your life there is no hope."
Brigitte has a message for Americans based on her experience at the muzzle end of the Muslim jihad:

"We really need to realize…All Americans need to realize that these people hate us and want nothing but to eliminate us because as far as they are concerned we are the infidels. These are religiously motivated fanatics who you cannot negotiate with. These are people who are convinced that god has ordered them to kill us. Their motivation is tremendous. They believe that the minute they die, at the first drop of blood, a crown of pearl will be placed on their head and they will be carried by the angels to heaven and placed at the right side of god and 72 virgins are offered to them. We cannot drop our guard for a minute. We must be more vigilant than ever before. Wake up America."

All Cultures Are Not Equal

The fabulously clear-headed Mark Steyn takes on multiculturalism by making the obvious argument that all cultures are not created equal. Along the way, he points out two examples of what passes for thought in the Muslim world:

To pluck at random, take Abd Al-Sabour Shahin, respected Egyptian professor, lecturer at Cairo University and head of the Sharia faculty at Al-Azhar university, the Harvard of Sunni Islam. On Monday on Saudi Channel One, Dr Shahin told viewers:
'Our enemies weave many lies about us, which we are not necessarily aware of. For example: one day, we awoke to the crime of 9/11, which hit the tallest buildings in New York, the Empire State Building. There is no doubt that not a single Arab or Muslim had anything to do with these events. The incident was fabricated as a pretext to attack Islam and Muslims.'

Er, OK. So if no Muslim hit the, um, Empire State Building, who did? On that, Dr Shahin was in no doubt: 'I believe a dirty Zionist hand carried out this act.'
In Australia:

"Here’s the Sunday Age in Melbourne reporting on 31 July on Werribee Islamic College: 'The imam told the students that the Jews were putting poison in the bananas and they should not eat them.’

You don’t have to be bananas to teach in an Islamic school but it helps. That’s a college, by the way, that receives funds from Australian taxpayers of about $3 million a year. For three million bucks they can’t hire a catering guy who can find them Jew-free bananas?"

Us Or Them

Christopher Hitchens on the US war with Islamofacism:

"Never mind the principles for one minute, but the lesson of realism is: that if you don’t fight them now you fight them later. They [Islamist radicals or, as Hitchens calls them, Islamo-fascists] gave us no peace and we shouldn’t give them any. We can't live on the same planet as them and I'm glad because I don’t want to. I don’t want to breathe the same air as these psychopaths and murders and rapists and torturers and child abusers. Its them or me. I'm very happy about this because I know it will be them. It’s a duty and a responsibility to defeat them. But it's also a pleasure. I don’t regard it as a grim task at all."
So let's get on with it.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Improvised Explosive Device

This is a Talkabout two-way radio, a cheap walkie-talkie, rigged to act as a transmitter to detonate an IED buried in a road in Mosul. Using this, a dopey insurgent tried to kill the troops with which Michael Yon was riding. The dope panicked and blew his attack. The good guys caught the bad guy, and Yon gives his account of it:

"LTC Kurilla didn't want to leave the bombs buried in the road, so he pulled the Strykers further back, and tried to use the terrorist's radio control to detonate them. He dropped down inside the hatch and asked the terrorist how to use the transmitter. In the most shocking admission of guilt imaginable, the terrorist walked the Commander through the steps: 1) Re-install the AA batteries in the back, 2) Connect the 9-volt battery on the side. 3) Flip the black switch on the side. 4) Press #1 on the weird keypad. 5) Press #7. When you press 7, the bomb explodes."
The fearsome wannabe murdering insurgent lived with his mommy. Evidently, all the lefty claptrap about Abu Ghraib being a torture den hasn't made much impression on the Iraqi insurgents. They know better from experience.

"After ordering that the street be made "black," meaning closed to traffic, Kurilla then asked the terrorist where he lived. Without hesitation, he told us. Some soldiers stayed to watch the IED area while we drove to and raided the man’s house.

He lived with his mother. She was the only one home when we arrived. It was as if she knew we were coming. Many people saw us capture him; someone must have called on a cell phone to warn her that trouble was brewing. We searched every where.

She smiled the whole time, as if to say, That’s my boy! The translator heard her say to her son, “Don’t worry. You will be released soon.” She smiled at me.

The most serious terrorists do not fear prison here. Captain Jeff VanAntwerp, who commands Alpha Company, recently told me that Iraqis joke among themselves that they would pay 5,000 Dinar per night to stay at Abu Ghraib prison. It's air conditioned, the showers are good, the food is good, and the water is good. The mother seemed to know this and it curled in contempt behind her smile."

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Hiroshima Hails Atom Bomb

From Scott Ott at Scrappleface:

Hiroshima Survivors Celebrate Life-Saving Atomic Bomb
by Scott Ott
(2005-08-06) -- Japanese survivors of the atomic bomb blast at Hiroshima marked the 60th anniversary of the first use of nuclear weapons in war by celebrating the end of the totalitarian rule of Emperor Hirohito, whose blind ambition caused 1.5 million Japanese military casualities and some 672,000 civilian casualities.

The hibakusha, or bomb-affected persons, issued a statement condemning totalitarianism and urging people who now live in dictatorships to "bring down their own governments before some outside force must do so for the good of the world."

"Each year at this time we usually gather to call for nuclear disarmament," said an unnamed Hiroshima survivor, "but with age comes wisdom. We now realize that despite its horrors, the atomic bomb was a life-saving device that ushered in a new era of Japanese freedom and prosperity. If the American president had not intervened, Hirohito would have squeezed the blood out of our people to the last drop."

The survivors' statement urged the United Nations to "learn the lesson of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and thus give up the delusion that dictators will bend to reason, bribes, half-measures or concessions."

The hibakusha called on the U.N. to "rise up and live out the true meaning of its charter: collective preemptive action to ensure peace by removing threats to peace."
OK, so it's a joke news report, but in a perfect world this is what the whiny Japanese warmongers turned pacifists would really be saying.

Tolerating Intolerance

Irshad Manji applauds British Prime Minister Tony Blair's decision not only to kick radical Muslims out of the country but to take on the Left's tolerance of hate in the name of multiculturalism.

Says Manji, "As Westerners bow down before multiculturalism, we anesthetize ourselves into believing that anything goes. We see our readiness to accommodate as a strength - even a form of cultural superiority (though few will admit that). Radical Muslims, on the other hand, see our inclusive instincts as a form of corruption that makes us soft and rudderless. They believe the weak deserve to be vanquished."

Perhaps Manji has a point. Maybe it is time to review our tolerance of hateful cultures when radical Muslims like Mohammed Atta feel free to walk into government offices to request a loan to make their attacks on America. Perhaps the government should have taken an intolerant tone when Atta threatened to cut the throat of the government loan officer and steal the money or when he asked to buy the aerial photo of Washington in her office or when he asked how she would feel if the World Trade Center were destroyed or told her Osama Bin Laden would be the world's greatest leader. Perhaps, just perhaps, we should wake up and oppose murderous Muslim bigotry rather than simply accept it.

Suicide Dog Bombs

Iraqi insurgents have been strapping explosives to dogs and sending them off to Iraqi police positions to detonate by remote control.

Rasha Khairir, 25, an employee of a Baghdad stock brokerage, objects, "How can they use these lovely pets for criminal and murderous acts? A poor dog can't refuse what they are doing with him because he can't think and decide." However, the same can be said of the regular Saudi suicide bomber, who is no smarter than a beagle.

And, of course, there is the typical hypocritical statement that such practices are un-Islamic. Abdel Salam Kubaisi, spokesman for the Muslim Scholars Association, a group of Sunni Arab clerics rooting for the insurgents, "Our religion does not permit us to hurt animals, neither by using them as explosive devices nor in any other manner." Mr. Kubaisi had no statement on whether it was permissible for Muslims to hurt infidels.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Why No Suicide Attacks In US?

USA Today asks why haven't there been any suicide attacks in America since the Sep 11 attacks, when such attacks are proceeding apace elsewhere. The government says suicide attacks on the American homeland are inevitable. There are many theories why they haven't come to pass:

American Muslims are better integrated and less radical than Muslims in Europe and the Middle East. American Muslims think of themselves as Americans first while foreign Muslims think of themselves as Muslims first. That means that there are much fewer volunteers for suicide missions and very little infrastructure to support such attacks. In fact, the American Muslim community has thwarted some suicide attacks by informing the authorities.

Al Qaeda is pretty much dead now, its last few members expending the bulk of their energy on surviving, pausing only to make the occassional videotaped empty threat. On the other hand, some think Al Qaeda is biding its time, slowly preparing another spectacular attack. Meanwhile, the war in Iraq is sucking up the supply of suicide bombers, who are mostly Saudis.

The US is better defended now, having bunkered up the likely targets and awakened to the terror threat. The last theory is that we have just been lucky.

Friday, August 05, 2005

More Threats From Al Qaeda

Dr. Ayman al-Zawahari, No. 2 terror boy in the shattered Al Qaeda terror mob, crawled out of his hole to make another videotape full of threats against the civilized world, broadcast by Arab satellite channel al-Jazeera, the mouthpiece of choice for bloodthirsty terrorists. Zawahari blamed the London Tube bombings on Tony Blair: "Blair has brought you destruction to the heart of London, and he will bring more destruction, God willing." He went on to claim, like Western leftists, that Iraq was another Vietnam, "What you have seen, O Americans, in New York and Washington and the losses you are having in Afghanistan and Iraq, in spite of all the media blackout, are only the losses of the initial clashes. If you continue the same policy of aggression against Muslims, God willing, you will see the horror that will make you forget what you had seen in Vietnam." And so on and so on.

When are we gonna kill this evil bastard?

President Bush replied, "We will stay on the offense against these people. They're terrorists and they're killers and they will kill innocent people... so they can impose their dark vision on the world."

I'll second that.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Yasser Arafat Still Dead

Some Palestinians marked Yasser Arafat's 76th birthday by visiting his grave in the parking lot of his former headquarters in Ramallah, the Muqata, nine months after he finally died.

David Samuels takes a dimmer view of Arafat's legacy in "In A Ruined Country: How Yasir Arafat destroyed Palestine" in the current edition of The Atlantic Monthly. Samuels finds that the young Palestinians of the 1970s and 1980s who worshipped Arafat from afar as a hero found him something less than they imagined close up when the Oslo Accords of 1993 made him chairman of the Palestinian Authority. Arafat created a corrupt and disorganized environment that treated ordinary Palestinians as subjects to be fleeced with the proceeds going to buying the loyalty of his cronies instead of building up Palestine. Arafat was supposedly the chairman of the Palestinian Authority but the PA is nothing more than a hodge podge of independent ministries, security services, and prisons headed by people personally beholden to Arafat, not to a Palestinian state.

Samuels writes:

The amounts of money stolen from the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian people through the corrupt practices of Arafat's inner circle are so staggeringly large that they may exceed one half of the total of $7 billion in foreign aid contributed to the Palestinian Authority. The biggest thief was Arafat himself. The International Monetary Fund has conservatively estimated that from 1995 to 2000 Arafat diverted $900 million from Palestinian Authority coffers, an amount that did not include the money that he and his family siphoned off through such secondary means as no-bid contracts, kickbacks, and rake-offs. A secret report prepared by an official Palestinian Authority committee headed by Arafat's cousin concluded that in 1996 alone, $326 million, or 43 percent of the state budget, had been embezzled, and that another $94 million, or 12.5 percent of the budget, went to the president's office, where it was spent at Arafat's personal discretion. An additional 35 percent of the budget went to pay for the security services, leaving a total of $73 million, or 9.5 percent of the budget, to be spent on the needs of the population of the West Bank and Gaza. The financial resources of the PLO, which may have amounted to somewhere between one and two billion dollars, were never included in the PA budget. Arafat hid his personal stash, estimated at $1 billion to $3 billion, in more than 200 separate bank accounts around the world, the majority of which have been uncovered since his death.

The missed opportunities are enough to make the angels weep.

Monday In Mosul

Michael Yon sorties out with the troops in Mosul Monday to provide a first hand account of a couple bad guys who tried to run a roadblock but got their asses shot off instead:

The Strykers blocked in the car, and dropped ramps so the soldiers could dismount and check the suspects. Ramps down is always an interesting moment. One time, in another Stryker Battalion in Mosul, when the ramp dropped, bad guys started shooting into the back of the vehicle.

More devastating, though, are the car bombs. People driving car bombs are known to explode without warning. But this car did not explode; instead, the terrorists tried to run the road block. This required them to squeeze between a Stryker and a building, nearly running over soldiers, who began firing at the fleeing insurgents.

The terrorist were making a run for it. I followed behind with my new camera, and actually shot photos while running.

The lack of power of the American M-4 and M-16 rifles is astonishing. So many people and cars shot-up, but they just keep going and going. For a moment, it appeared the terrorists might get away.

But our guys shot them full of holes, and the terrorists crashed into a small roadside stand. Nobody had to yell, cease fire; These soldiers have fought enough to know when to start shooting, and when to stop. The two terrorists died at 8:04, Monday morning.

London Tube Bombing Survivor Speaks

Garri Holness is a Jamaican singer who was on his way to work via the London Tube the morning of July 7. Sitting near him was Jermaine Lindsay, Muslim fanatic and suicide bomber, who detonated himself. Garri survived. Twenty-six people died. He tells his story to BBC Radio 4:

"The second train came, which was also packed. And I thought, well, I have got to get to work, so I boarded that train. And on that train I think I was in the first carriage. So I got into there, holding to the pole, and then the train started going along. I don't know if it was about two minutes or five minutes, but something happened. I don't know what happened.

"And my head hit the blue pole that was in front of me. It smacked it, kind of thing. And I remained holding on to it with my left hand, and saying: 'I have got to keep focused, I have got to keep focused.'

"And I was looking around me, the lights were, like... doubling, and things like that, and it was like being in a rave where you could still make people out and still make out bits and pieces. I was kind of focusing in and around me.

"Now, at that point I didn't realise that my leg had already gone. The bottom part of my left leg had already gone.

"And I was on the floor. While I was on the floor, whatever overtook me I don't know, I started pulling people to one side, and saying: 'Calm down, calm down, we're going to get out'.

"And as I got a little way in, a woman called Alison was saying to me: 'Now look, Garri, calm down. Let's get onto the chair now.'

"At that minute a girl screamed: 'I've lost my leg! I've lost my leg!' And then I kind of looked at my leg, and I noticed that my leg was, like, hanging on - my left leg. And I looked at it, and it was such a funny angle I just knew I had lost my leg at that time.

"And then I pulled myself up, with the strength of my arms, onto a chair. And when I was on the chair, Alison was saying to me, like: 'Garri, you have got to stay with me'.

"And blood was, like, oozing all over the place, and I turned up and I was really, really faint, and faintness just kept on hitting me, and the next thing I remember was I was going down. And I said I kind of couldn't stay on the seat no longer and I kind of leaned down and stretched out to kind of go back onto the floor.

"But when I put my hands onto the floor, I felt, kind of... flesh. And it was gooey and it was horrible.

"And I thought, no, I'm not feeling that, and I moved my hand to another position, and there was like the exact same thing, and it was horrible.

"So I thought: 'I have got to stay up here'. And then Alison, I said: 'Alison, can you get me a bag or something to rest my head on?' And she says: 'No, rest your head on my lap.'

"And obviously this woman had superficial injuries herself, and she was sitting with me and she was there with me and she was there with me.

"And all of a sudden I saw flashlights coming from the driver's side. The ambulance and the police came in. And they took everybody out, bit by bit. And me and Alison was the last two to leave.

"The next thing I remember was waking up four days after at the Royal Free Hospital, still not knowing what's happened. And then my brother told me that there was four bombs that went off, and I was, like: 'What?' I couldn't believe it.

"I don't think... The only thing, I think, I need to know is where the bomb went off on the train exactly, but I kind of think I know where it went off.

"But I don't think I need to know any more details about the bombers as well, because they seemed like... sheep. Following a flock, you know? You know, they haven't got their own mind, they're brainwashed. I don't really need to know any more about them, because my mind is already set about them. They have been in the newspapers, I have read bits of articles about them so my mind is already set on them.

"I have worked out what kind of people they are, but apart from that that's about it as regards detail, apart from that I think it is time for me to move on."

(Sarah Nelson, the reporter, points out that the bomber was from Jamaica.)

"Exactly. My family is from Jamaica. And that's what I'm saying, in terms of I don't need to know any more, because, really, he is killing one of his own. And on top of that, as well, when I look at it, they said that the same individual has got a girlfriend who has got a child and a child on the way. Your mind must be really, really warped to be leaving a child, you girlfriend first and foremost but your child and a child on the way. Fatherless.

"He must have been brought up better than that, because as I say, I'm from West Indian background like this fellow's from a West Indian background, and I know for a fact how the West Indian background bring their kids up. They instill discipline, and manners. And respect.

"But I haven't got no malice against anybody, I'm just going to get on with my life, because if I have that malice or that anger or anything like that, I'm only going to be held back. And I don't want to be held back, I'm too positive and too strong to be held back. I need to just go forward now.

"I have just got to remain positive at the end of the day. Not being funny, but seeing silly little programmes like The Bionic Man, and Heather Mills, and seeing things like that, and reading in the paper about the man with the bionic arm and things like that is giving me hope, making me positive.

"You have football teams that have got amputees, amputee football teams. So little things like that are helping me.

"I'm not going that fast as to be playing football, but if I am able to go to work, come home, and do what I'm doing, and sing - I'm a singer, I do lots of work with Charles Bailey [hip-hop record producer] - as long as I can get along with doing that, because, like, my voice ain't going anywhere, then I will be happy. Because I have been blessed. God saved me for a reason.

"I have had that counselling, support and various other things, and I will use that in time. But as you can see I'm just naturally a bubbly person, you know. In time they say I might have my down periods, but I'm just me. I'm naturally a bubbly person, everyone says that to me. In fact, some woman came in and she said when she saw me on the table: 'That's not Garri, because he's not smiling, and the Garri we know he always has a smile on him'.

"So I'm just naturally the way I am. I might need counselling, but I don't think I will. The best thing for me is just to move on now."

Another glorious victory for Islam.