Jihadis Find The Enemy And It Is Them
Labels: Iraqi insurgents
A Division Of Halliburton
Labels: Iraqi insurgents
"KHAR, Pakistan, May 28 (Reuters) - Six pro-Taliban militants were killed on Wednesday when their vehicle packed with explosives blew up in a northwestern Pakistani region on the Afghan border, a militant and officials said.The explosion was caused by a hand grenade that went off accidently when their comrades were travelling through the Bajaur region, where Taliban and al Qaeda-linked militants operate, a militant said."The hand grenade blast blew up the ammunition and explosives in the vehicle killing six militants and wounding two," said a Taliban member who declined to be identified."
"My today’s thinking is substantially influenced by the fact that I spent most of my life under the communist regime which ignored and brutally violated human freedom and wanted to command not only the people but also the nature. To command “wind and rain” is one of the famous slogans I remember since my childhood. This experience taught me that freedom and rational dealing with the environment are indivisible. It formed my relatively very sharp views on the fragility and vulnerability of free society and gave me a special sensitivity to all kinds of factors which may endanger it.
"I do not, however, live in the past and do not see the future threats to free society coming from the old and old-fashioned communist ideology. The name of the new danger will undoubtedly be different, but its substance will be very similar. There will be the same attractive, to a great extent pathetic and at first sight quasi-noble idea that transcends the individual in the name of something above him, (of something greater than his poor self), supplemented by enormous self-confidence on the side of those who stand behind it. Like their predecessors, they will be certain that they have the right to sacrifice man and his freedom to make their idea reality. In the past it was in the name of the masses (or of the Proletariat), this time in the name of the Planet. Structurally, it is very similar.
"I see the current danger in environmentalism and especially in its strongest version, climate alarmism. Feeling very strongly about it and trying to oppose it was the main reason for putting my book together, originally in Czech language, in the spring of 2007. It has also been the driving force behind my active involvement in the current Climate Change Debate and behind my being the only head of state who in September 2007 at the UN Climate Change Conference in New York City openly and explicitly challenged the undergoing global warming hysteria. My central concern is – in a condensed form – captured in the subtitle of this book. I ask: “What is Endangered: Climate or Freedom?” My answer is: “it is our freedom.” I may also add “and our prosperity”.
"The book was written by an economist who happens to be in a high political position. I don’t deny my basic paradigm, which is the “economic way of thinking”, because I consider it an advantage, not a disadvantage. By stressing that, I want to say that the Climate Change Debate in a wider and the only relevant sense should be neither about several tenths of a degree of Fahrenheit or Celsius, about the up or down movements of sea level, about the depths of ice at North and Southern Pole, nor about the variations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The real debate should be about costs and benefits of alternative human actions, about how to rationally deal with the unknown future, about what kind and size of solidarity with much wealthier future generations is justified, about the size of externalities and their eventual appropriate “internalization”, about how much to trust the impersonal functioning of the markets in solving any human problem, including global warming and how much to distrust the very visible hand of very human politicians and their bureaucrats. Some of these questions are touched upon in my book.
"My deep frustration has been exponentially growing in recent years by witnessing the fact that almost everything has already been said, that all rational arguments have been used and that global warming alarmism is still marching on. It could be even true that “We are now at the stage where mere facts, reason, and truth are powerless in the face of the global warming propaganda” (R. McKittrick, private correspondence). We are regretfully behind it. The whole process is already in the hands of those who are not interested in rational ideas and arguments. It is in the hands of climatologists and other related scientists who are highly motivated to look in one direction only because a large number of academic careers has evolved around the idea of man-made global warming. It is, further, in the hands of politicians who maximize the number of votes they seek to get from the electorate.
"It is also – as a consequence of political decisions – in the hands of bureaucrats of national and more often of international institutions who try to maximize their budgets and years of careers as well regardless the costs, truth and rationality. It is in the hands of rent-seeking businesspeople who are – given the existing policies – interested in the amount of subsidies they are receiving and look for all possible ways to escape the for them often merciless, but for the rest of us very positive, general welfare enhancing functioning of free markets. An entire industry has developed around the funds the firms are getting from the government.
"The basic questions of the current climate change debate are sufficiently known and well-structured: 1) Do we live in an era of a statistically significant, non-accidental and noncyclical climate change?2) If so, is it dominantly man-made?3) If so, should such a moderate temperature increase bother us more than many other pressing problems we face and should it receive our extraordinary attention?4) If we want to change the climate, can it be done? Are current attempts to do so the best allocation of our scarce resources?
"My answer to all these questions is NO, but with a difference in emphasis. I don’t aspire to measure the global temperature, nor to estimate the importance of factors which make it. This is not the area of my comparative advantages. But to argue, as it’s done by many contemporary environmentalists, that these questions have already been answered with a consensual “yes” and that there is an unchallenged scientific consensus about this is unjustified. It is also
morally and intellectually deceptive."
A few years ago, more than I care to mention, I headed a large office at the State Department. I got tasked with hiring a couple of Presidential Management Interns (PMIs). These PMIs come from the elite of the elite student body at the elite of the elite universities. They get hired on a temporary basis and then, usually, get offered prestigious jobs in the government. I was told, in no uncertain terms, that whatever else I did, I had to hire women.
So I began to pore over the resumes. My heart sank. I felt inadequate and so, so inferior to these kids. Their resumes, impeccably printed and organized, using dozens of words ending in "-ization," and listing prowess with a dazzling array of complex software programs, described accomplishments beyond my wildest dreams -- especially for when I was the applicants' age!I thought I should resign and give
up my job to one of the "brilliant" child wonders.
Ah, naive me. I obviously had spent too much time overseas. I saw resumes as truthful documents actually written by the applicants, applicants, in this case, full of accomplishments and possessed of massive brains throbbing with energy and ideas. As I, however, kept reading, even slow-witted me began to notice oddities. They all began to look the same: the font, the format, the wording, the list of classes and even -- horrors! -- the "accomplishments."
I noted this in passing to a cynical old friend (now, alas, departed) who worked in "human resources" (what a great phrase that). He laughed, "You dope! They get classes on how to write resumes! They have professors and computer programs that put these things together for them." (Remember, folks, computers were new things back then.) He said, "Just randomly pick a couple of women students, they're all the same, hire'em, and move on."
I could not do that. I stole a friend's idea and devised "The World War II Test." I invited the applicants for interviews. These PMI wannabes came off as slick and somewhat rude. I noted something among my subjects, a sense of entitlement, they all, to varying degrees, emitted a message along the lines of "Why are you bothering me with this silly interview? I am obviously brilliant. I have a degree from Columbia. I am not going to spend my whole life as you have in this stupid bureaucracy. I just need this to add to my resume. I am in a hurry."
I hit them with the test, which consisted of about dozen questions about WWII and its aftermath. I recall a few,Can you tell me how US troops got into Europe in the first place? When was WWII? (I would accept a variety of answers as long as the applicant could defend the dates as the true start and end of WWII.) What nations comprised the principal Allied and Axis powers? Who was Neville Chamberlain? What he did he do at Munich and with whom? Who was Mussolini? What did he do to Ethiopia? Who was Stalin? Who was Hirohito? What was D-Day? What President ordered the dropping of the atomic bombs and why? Can you name a result of the Conference at Yalta? What was the Berlin Airlift?
Of the 14 or 15 applicants I interviewed, only one got them all right -- the only male in the crowd, by the way. None, zero, zip of the rest got even ONE right. Not a single one. A very irritated applicant asked me, "Do we really need to know this old stuff?" I noted that we worked with NATO and Europe, hence, it was important to know the background that led to the creation of NATO and the then just-concluded Cold War. She stared at me and said, "What does World War II have to do with NATO, the Cold War and Europe?"
I promptly offered the job to the male -- oh, the cries from "Human Resources" -- who turned it down for a more lucrative one in the private sector. In the best Foreign Service tradition, I stalled hiring anybody else, let my two-year assignment run out, and left my poor successor to get stuck with one of the clueless ones.
Labels: John McCain
"For it is not up to me, but Muslims themselves to tear out the hateful verses from the Quran. Muslims want you to make way for Islam but Islam does not make way for you. The government insists you respect Islam but Islam does not respect you. Islam wants to rule, submit, and seeks to destroy our western civilization. In 1945, Nazism was defeated in Europe. In 1989, communism was defeated in Europe. Now, the Islamic ideology has to be defeated. Stop Islamisation. Defend our freedom."
Dear Ayman al-Zawahiri:
I am a journalist for the U.S. publication Tiger Beat. When I heard you would be taking Web questions, I was like OMG, I totes have to write to him!!! Here are three questions we’re asking celebrities this month:
1. If you could be any character on “Gossip Girl,” who would you be?
2. Who would be a better friend, Lauren on “The Hills” or Ashley Tisdale in “High School Musical”?
3. Who is hotter, Zac Efron or Joe Jonas? (LOL)
—Stacy in Manhattan
Ayman al-Zawahiri writes:
May you and everyone at your magazine burn in Hell.
Greetings and compliments to you, my good sir:
I am the widow of the late Nigerian head of state, General Sani Abacha. Please wire $15,000 in U.S. funds to the bank information provided below and in two weeks’ time you will receive $150,000 for your kindly services, my goodly gentleman.
—Mrs. Maryam Abacha
Ayman al-Zawahiri writes:
What kind of simpleton do you take me for? I sent you $15,000 last month and I never heard back.
Dear Ayman al-Zawahiri:
I am a big fan of Osama bin Laden and would like to get his autograph. I have an eight-by-ten glossy of him but don’t know where to send it. Could you please give me his exact mailing address?
—Borge W. Gush
Ayman al-Zawahiri writes:
Please contact him directly. He’s on Facebook.
"Wilders, like Westergaard and the other Danish cartoonists, has been widely vilified for "seeking to inflame" the Muslim community. Even if this had been his intention, this criticism represents an almost supernatural coincidence of moral blindness and political imprudence. The point is not (and will never be) that some free person spoke, or wrote, or illustrated in such a manner as to inflame the Muslim community. The point is that only the Muslim community is combustible in this way. The controversy over Fitna, like all such controversies, renders one fact about our world especially salient: Muslims appear to be far more concerned about perceived slights to their religion than about the atrocities committed daily in its name. Our accommodation of this psychopathic skewing of priorities has, more and more, taken the form of craven and blinkered acquiescence.
"There is an uncanny irony here that many have noticed. The position of the Muslim community in the face of all provocations seems to be: Islam is a religion of peace, and if you say that it isn't, we will kill you. ...
"A point of comparison: The controversy of over Fitna was immediately followed by ubiquitous media coverage of a scandal involving the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS). In Texas, police raided an FLDS compound and took hundreds of women and underage girls into custody to spare them the continued, sacramental predations of their menfolk. While mainstream Mormonism is now granted the deference accorded to all major religions in the United States, its fundamentalist branch, with its commitment to polygamy, spousal abuse, forced marriage, child brides (and, therefore, child rape) is often portrayed in the press as a depraved cult. But one could easily argue that Islam, considered both in the aggregate and in terms of its most negative instances, is far more despicable than fundamentalist Mormonism. The Muslim world can match the FLDS sin for sin--Muslims commonly practice polygamy, forced-marriage (often between underage girls and older men), and wife-beating--but add to these indiscretions the surpassing evils of honor killing, female "circumcision," widespread support for terrorism, a pornographic fascination with videos showing the butchery of infidels and apostates, a vibrant form of anti-semitism that is explicitly genocidal in its aspirations, and an aptitude for producing children's books and television programs which exalt suicide-bombing and depict Jews as "apes and pigs."
"Any honest comparison between these two faiths reveals a bizarre double standard in our treatment of religion. We can openly celebrate the marginalization of FLDS men and the rescue of their women and children. But, leaving aside the practical and political impossibility of doing so, could we even allow ourselves to contemplate liberating the women and children of traditional Islam? ...
"The connection between the doctrine of Islam and Islamist violence is simply not open to dispute. It's not that critics of religion like myself speculate that such a connection might exist: the point is that Islamists themselves acknowledge and demonstrate this connection at every opportunity and to deny it is to retreat within a fantasy world of political correctness and religious apology. Many western scholars, like the much admired Karen Armstrong, appear to live in just such a place. All of their talk about how benign Islam "really" is, and about how the problem of fundamentalism exists in all religions, only obfuscates what may be the most pressing issue of our time: Islam, as it is currently understood and practiced by vast numbers of the world's Muslims, is antithetical to civil society. A recent poll showed that thirty-six percent of British Muslims (ages 16-24) believe that a person should be killed for leaving the faith. Sixty-eight percent of British Muslims feel that their neighbors who insult Islam should be arrested and prosecuted, and seventy-eight percent think that the Danish cartoonists should have been brought to justice. And these are British Muslims. ...
"It is time we recognized that those who claim the "right not to be offended" have also announced their hatred of civil society."
"Well, here you are at your college graduation. And I know what you're thinking: "Gimme the sheepskin and get me outta here!" But not so fast. First you have to listen to a commencement speech.And it just gets better from there.
"Don't moan. I'm not going to "pass the wisdom of one generation down to the next." I'm a member of the 1960s generation. We didn't have any wisdom.
"We were the moron generation. We were the generation that believed we could stop the Vietnam War by growing our hair long and dressing like circus clowns. We believed drugs would change everything -- which they did, for John Belushi. We believed in free love. Yes, the love was free, but we paid a high price for the sex.
"My generation spoiled everything for you. It has always been the special prerogative of young people to look and act weird and shock grown-ups. But my generation exhausted the Earth's resources of the weird. Weird clothes -- we wore them. Weird beards -- we grew them. Weird words and phrases -- we said them. So, when it came your turn to be original and look and act weird, all you had left was to tattoo your faces and pierce your tongues. Ouch. That must have hurt. I apologize."
Labels: P.J. O'Rourke
"During the April 16 debate between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, moderator George Stephanopoulos brought up “a gentleman named William Ayers,” who “was part of the Weather Underground in the 1970s. They bombed the Pentagon, the Capitol, and other buildings. He’s never apologized for that.” Stephanopoulos then asked Obama to explain his relationship with Ayers. Obama’s answer: “The notion that somehow as a consequence of me knowing somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was eight years old, somehow reflects on me and my values, doesn’t make much sense, George.” Obama was indeed only eight in early 1970. I was only nine then, the year Ayers’s Weathermen tried to murder me. ...
"In February 1970, my father, a New York State Supreme Court justice, was presiding over the trial of the so-called “Panther 21,” members of the Black Panther Party indicted in a plot to bomb New York landmarks and department stores. Early on the morning of February 21, as my family slept, three gasoline-filled firebombs exploded at our home on the northern tip of Manhattan, two at the front door and the third tucked neatly under the gas tank of the family car. ... Sunlight, the next morning, revealed three sentences of blood-red graffiti on our sidewalk: FREE THE PANTHER 21; THE VIET CONG HAVE WON; KILL THE PIGS. ...
"Though no one was ever caught or tried for the attempt on my family’s life, there was never any doubt who was behind it. Only a few weeks after the attack, the New York contingent of the Weathermen blew themselves up making more bombs in a Greenwich Village townhouse. The same cell had bombed my house, writes Ron Jacobs in The Way the Wind Blew: A History of the Weather Underground. And in late November that year, a letter to the Associated Press signed by Bernardine Dohrn, Ayers’s wife, promised more bombings.
"As the association between Obama and Ayers came to light, it would have helped the senator a little if his friend had at least shown some remorse. But listen to Ayers interviewed in the New York Times on September 11, 2001, of all days: “I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough.” Translation: “We meant to kill that judge and his family, not just damage the porch.” When asked by the Times if he would do it all again, Ayers responded: “I don’t want to discount the possibility.”"
"There's something about a good bomb … Night after night, day after day, each majestic scene I witnessed was so terrible and so unexpected that no city would ever again stand innocently fixed in my mind. Big buildings and wide streets, cement and steel were no longer permanent. They, too, were fragile and estructible. A torch, a bomb, a strong enough wind, and they, too, would come undone or get knocked down."