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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Houla: Who did it?



OR

 


How Bad Was It? It doesn't get any worse. This is about as appalling as the human mind and deed can sink. Who could do this? More people than you think possible.

 


Robert Fisk: The West is horrified by children's slaughter now. Soon we'll forget

The Algerian FLN regime got away with it, after 200,000 dead – compared to the mere 10,000 killed so far in Syria's war





Bashar al-Assad will get away with it. He got away with Deraa. He got away with Homs. And he'll get away with Houla. So will the armed opposition to the regime, along with al-Qa'ida and any other outfits joining in Syria's tragedy. Yes, this may be the critical moment, the "tipping point" of horror, when Baathist collapse becomes inevitable rather than probable. And dear Mr Hague may be "absolutely" appalled. The UN, too. We all are.

But the Middle East is littered with a hundred Houlas, their dead children piled among the statistics, with knives and ropes as well as guns among the murder weapons. And what if Assad's soldiers let their Alawite militia do their dirty work? Didn't the Algerian FLN regime use "home guard" units to murder its opponents in the 1990s? Didn't Gaddafi have his loyalist militias last year, and Mubarak his jailbird drugged-up ex-cops, the baltagi, to bash opponents of his regime? Didn't Israel use its Lebanese Phalangist proxies to intimidate and kill its opponents in Lebanon? Wasn't this, too, "rule by murder"? And come to think of it, wasn't it Bashar al-Assad's uncle Rifaat's Special Forces who massacred the insurgents of Hama in 1982 – speak this not too loudly, for Rifaat lives now between Paris and London – and so who thinks Bashar can't get away with Houla? The Algerian parallel is a frightening one. The FLN's corrupt leadership wanted a "democracy", even held elections. But once it was clear that the Islamist opposition – the luckless Islamic Salvation Front – would win, the government declared war on the "terrorists" trying to destroy Algeria. Villages were besieged, towns were shelled – all in the name of fighting "terror" – until the opposition took to slaughtering civilians around Blida, thousands of them, babies with their throats cut, women raped. And then it turned out the Algerian army was also involved in massacres. For Houla, read Bentalha, a place we have all forgotten; as we will forget Houla.

 And we Westerners, we huffed and puffed, and called upon both sides in Algeria to exercise "restraint", but wanted stability in France's former colony – and let's not forget that Syria is a former French "mandate" territory – and were very worried about al-Qa'ida-style insurgents taking over Algeria and, in the end, the US supported the Algerian military just as the Russians are supporting Syria's military today. And the FLN got away with it, after 200,000 dead – compared to the mere 10,000 killed so far in Syria's war.

 And it's worth remembering that, faced with their 1990s insurrection, the Algerians cast around desperately for countries from which they could take advice. They chose Hafez al-Assad's Syria and sent a military delegation to Damascus to learn how the regime destroyed Hama in 1982. Now the Americans – who six months ago were characteristically casting Bashar as a "dead man walking" – prefer a Yemen-type ending to the Syrian war, as if Yemen's crisis wasn't bloody enough. But replacing Assad with a thug from the same patch (the Sanaa "solution") is not what the Syrians will settle for.

 Yes, it's a civil war. And yes, Houla may be the turning point. And yes, now the UN are witnesses. But the Baath party has roots that go deeper than blood – ask any Lebanese – and we in the West will soon forget Houla when another YouTube image of death flicks on to our screens from the Syrian countryside. Or from Yemen. Or from the next revolution.

 Guns for hire: Assad's 'shabiha'

 The Egyptian revolution had to contend with Hosni Mubarak's thugs, or baltagi. The Syrian opposition faces what it calls the shabiha. The name comes from the Arabic word for ghost and describes the armed supporters of Bashar al-Assad, pictured, who have worked alongside the army to crush protests. The opposition has accused the gangs, recruited primarily from the President's Alawite sect, of a campaign of intimidation that has included executions. Some in the international community have accused the Assad regime of "outsourcing repression". Richard Hall

74 comments:

  1. "al-Qa'ida and any other outfits joining in Syria's tragedy" - You mean the same al-Qa'ida that the West flew in from Libya?
    These media ready Syrian atrocities show signs of a very cynical mehodology. The report from the last UN observer mission said that a third party was operating in the country, one that was attacking Syrian forces and civilians. Funny how that was not picked up by any media. There are military contractors of various nationalities, that have been arrested in numbers in Syria. What are they doing there?
    The 'Houla massacre' has all the signs of a wicked provocative stunt. Artillery and tank shells were reported as being fired at the time yet the bodies in the video show 1on 1 injuries. Where are these bodies? When will we have the autopsies performed? Don't hold your breath.
    The UN SC is in meetings to try to condemn the Assad regime for this event yet the only evidence that these crimes even happened are Youtube videos of unknown origin and the evidence of regime involvement? None.

    The 1st clues to even the lay observer of such 'ops' are: Think who gains? Not the Syrian regime. Also the slick coordination of the mass media and attempted UN statement coordination.
    The game: A huge Geo-political play for regime change in the region , part of a pincer movement against both Iran and Syria. Boatloads of Syrian deaths on all sides are nothing to these people and easy to arrange when the stakes are so high.

    Who gains? The Geography is plain to see. Israel removes a huge thorn in its northern side. The US are happy because they have been hypnotized unto believing their interests are Israel's interests, (btw UK 'advisors' are also already involved). The MI complex, the Oil, Banking and monopolistic media will all be big gainers and are playing their part.

    It would already be done if it wasn't for the Russians and Chinese, who know exactly what is up and are obstructing as much as they can.

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  2. These deaths are a great tragedy that has arisen as a consequence of political intrigue and conspiracy designed to achieve regime change and the dissolution of Syria to benefit Western hegemony.

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    1. Western hegemony.

      intp1 gives himself/herself away as a Chinaman.


      What a lot of horseshit.

      b

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  3. A bit of Chaos Theory involved there...worth a try!

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  4. That's what I figure:

    The Ruskies and the Chi-Coms are seeking truth, light and fairness.
    ...and the West is up to no good.

    As Always.

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  5. The majority of Syria's people support Assad. Like Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, Syria is tribal and the different tribes fight each other. Minorities have started a civil war there and such incidents like this happen in civil wars, and are even carried out by photogenic 'rebels'.

    We've made a mess of Afghanistan and Iraq and events after 'liberation' in Libya aren't encouraging. It's time to realise our pious attempts to enforce our standards on others are a waste of blood and treasure and that we have enough problems of our own without adding expensive new ones.

    Let those who advocate getting rid of Assad lead by example by going over there and doing it with their own blood and treasure, but I think that somehow that's not on their agenda.

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    1. Wrong-O.

      It's a wonderful situation seen through the eyeglasses of Fitzgeraldean analysis.

      Libya being the star at the top of the Christmas Tree.

      Not one USofA casualty there, and now the country is disfunctional. Only the oil still flows.

      What's not to like there?

      b

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    2. Jenny wrote:

      "The majority of Syria's people support Assad."

      Really, what poll suggests that fact? My understanding is that Assad is part of the Alawite (sp?) tribe and they are very much a minority. They have ruled for years and fear that once out of power they will be eradicated.

      Brit Hume was whining last Sunday night about the "Duty to Protect" and the lack of US response in Syria. I thought his head was about to explode with frustration. There are many bads things going on in the world and it would be nice to try to help put things straight in stead of sitting to the side shaking our heads.

      The problem is when the US acts unilateraly. Given that nations have interests and act accordingly it makes it impossible to, at the very least, appear to act for the greater good. Unfortunately the US, of late, has stubbornly refused to engage in multilateral institutions designed to try to address some of these thorny issues. It is quite the conundrum.

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    3. What a lot of horseshit, Ash. There's less of it out at the stables.

      Listen to this gibberish -

      "Unfortunately the US, of late, has stubbornly refused to engage in multilateral institutions designed to try to address some of these thorny issues. It is quite the conundrum."

      Yes, yes, quite so, hmmm, yes, certainly, hmmm, I say, we HAVE failed, have we not? Yes, yes, dear me, our modern multilateral institutions were designed to address some tribal shit in Libya, with a mohammedan chaser, that's goes back before the Romans. I say, we MUST do better.

      b

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    4. We could exterminate the brutes, repopulate with Swiss and Jews. But we won't.

      b

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    5. The ICC being one such institution boobie.

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    6. Name caller!

      I support the ICC, Ash, the Butler, I have strongly advocated, should appear before said International Tribunal, and not be gaoled in some Vatican dungeon, where, we are told, he is being secretly interrogated.


      FREE THE BUTLER!

      BUTLER TO ICC!

      Ash, I love ya, you are a gas!

      b

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    7. "Name Caller!"

      b, bob, bobal, bobbie, boobie - all refer to the same!

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    8. .

      The ICC?

      Good lord.

      Grow up and join the real world, Ash.

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    9. Ya, I know Quirk, you think the US should shoulder the burden of cop to the world.

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    10. .

      Someone questioned if Max might be Trish.

      I would suggest Jenny as a more likely candidate. She seems to think along the same lines.

      I agree with most of her post with the exception of Assad having majority support (don't know the mix) and her last sentence in which she seems (not sure) to suggest the US should get involved over there.

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    11. .

      Ya, I know Quirk, you think the US should shoulder the burden of cop to the world.

      Don't be obtuse, Ash. Nothing could be further from the truth.

      The fact is I am merely amazed at your prediliction for the PC. Support international institutions? Nonsense. Some of them may have some value at times, the World Bank, the IMF. others... Most of the time, they are merely used as propaganda tools by those who can.

      The ICC? Run by a bunch of Western elitists who plan to impose western morality on the world. Who have they ever prosecuted except African and Eastern European dictators. Do you ever expect them to prosecute one of their own? If so you are a naif.

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    12. It seems you can almost detect the hypocrisy in your position when you admit there is some value in them at times. Who needs the WTO, eh? or any other pesky institution of governance when might makes right? You are in favor of doing away with the US federal government which usurped the power of all those nice individual states back in the day I presume.

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    13. Quirk wrote:

      "Do you ever expect them to prosecute one of their own?"

      ummm, dude, it is designed that way - they are intended to prosecute in places where the institutional structures are unable or unwilling to launch the prosecution.

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    14. .

      How convenient.

      What elitist pap.

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    15. .

      It seems you can almost detect the hypocrisy in your position when you admit there is some value in them at times.


      Almost but not quite, right Ash?

      More crap floating south from Canada.

      You insinuate totality when you use the term 'them' without specifying the two organizations I actually mentioned, the WB and the IMF, two financial institutions, not the majority 'them' consisting of elitist do-gooders determined to impress on the world their own version of the 'it's the right thing to do', blissfully excusing any collateral damage along the way in their search of 'the greater cause'.

      Makes me want to puke.

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  6. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday voiced "revulsion" over the bloodshed in Syria, while accusing Iran and its Lebanese militia ally Hezbollah of being accomplices.
    He was "revolted was by the incessant massacres conducted by Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces against ... civilians ... which continued over the weekend in the town of Houla," the premier's office said.
    "Iran and Hezbollah are an inseparable part of the Syrian atrocities, and the world needs to act against them too," Netanyahu was quoted as saying.


    AND

    The US's top military officer has warned Syria it could face armed intervention as international outrage grows over the massacre of women and children by tanks and artillery in Houla.

    General Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, said that following the UN security council's condemnation of the slaughter – in which more than 100 people were killed, many of them children – there needed to be increased diplomatic pressure on Damascus. But he added that the US would be prepared to act militarily if it was "asked to do so".

    "There is always a military option," he told Fox News. "You'll always find military leaders to be somewhat cautious about the use of force, because we're never entirely sure what comes out on the other side. But that said, it may come to a point with Syria because of the atrocities.”

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  7. We will save the children with NATO bombing? No one knows for sure who did the killing, but it appears from the viciousness it was personal and tribal based. The only thing that seems to work in multicultural societies, based on tribe and religion is repression. Want to know how it is done in the Middle East, reread the reports on Arial Sharon, the Falange and what happened at the Palestinian camps of Sabra and Shatila between Sept. 16 and 18 in 1982.

    As awful as this is, it is not our business to get militarily involved in this. The idea that Netanyahu is now claiming the Iranians are behind it, is so transparent, reminiscent of “no crisis should be wasted.”

    There is no end to horror in human societies. This is not our problem and our intervention would work as well as it has in (pick your ME country).


    14 May: NATO air strike hit a large number of people gathered for Friday prayers in the eastern city of Brega leaving 11 religious leaders dead and 50 others wounded.[180]

    24 May: NATO air strikes in Tripoli kill 19 civilians and wound 150, according to Libyan state television.[181]

    31 May: Libya claims that NATO strikes have left up to 718 civilians dead.[182]

    19 June: NATO air strikes hit a residential house in Tripoli, killing seven civilians, according to Libyan state television.[183]

    20 June: A NATO airstrike in Sorman, near Tripoli, killed fifteen civilians, according to government officials.[184] Eight rockets apparently hit the compound of a senior government official, in an area where NATO confirmed operations had taken place.[184]

    25 June: NATO strikes on Brega hit a bakery and a restaurant, killing 15 civilians and wounding 20 more, Libyan state television claimed. The report further accused the coalition of "crimes against humanity". The claims were denied by NATO.[185]

    28 June: NATO airstrike on the town of Tawergha, 300 km east of the Libyan capital, Tripoli kills eight civilians.[186]

    25 July: NATO airstrike on a medical clinic in Zliten kills 11 civilians, though the claim was denied by NATO, who said they hit a vehicle depot and communications center.[187][188]

    20 July: NATO attacks Libyan state TV, Al-Jamahiriya. Three journalists killed.[189]

    9 August: Libyan government claims 85 civilians were killed in a NATO airsrike in Majer, a village near Zliten. A spokesman confirms that NATO bombed Zliten at 2:34 a.m. on 9 August,[190] but says he was unable to confirm the casualties. Commander of the NATO military mission, Lieutenant General Charles Bouchard says "I cannot believe that 85 civilians were present when we struck in the wee hours of the morning, and given our intelligence. But I cannot assure you that there were none at all".[191]

    15 September: Gaddafi spokesman Moussa Ibrahim declares that NATO air strikes killed 354 civilians and wounded 700 others, while 89 other civilians are supposedly missing. He also claims that over 2,000 civilians have been killed by NATO air strikes since 1 September.[192] NATO denied the claims, saying they were unfounded.[193] WIKIPEDIA

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  8. For Greater Glory Trailer
    Peter O'Toole Lives!
    (What's New Pusseycat? --- My model in college after I got my draft notice)

    Persecution of Christians in Mexico

    ...As a reaction against the strict enforcement of the above anti-clerical articles in the constitution of 1917 in Mexico, specifically Article 130, armed conflict broke out in the Cristero War (also known as the Cristiada) of 1926 to 1929. This was a civil war between catholic rebels called Cristeros and the anti-clerical Mexican government of the time that was mainly localized in central Western states in Mexico.

    The Cristero War came about in response to the anti-clerical laws of the Mexican Constitution of 1917, and its interpretation by the "violent atheist" President Plutarco Elías Calles.[14] Though conflict between state and church marked the presidency of Álvaro Obregón (1920–1924), who "accused the clergy of being insincere and of producing conflict" but "spoke of Jesus Christ as 'the greatest socialist who has been known to Humanity'",[15] it was with Calles' election in 1924 that anti-clerical laws were stringently applied throughout the country. Calles also added his own anti-clerical legislation including a requirement that prohibited priests from ministering unless licensed by the state.[14] State officials then began to limit the number of priests so that vast areas of the population were left with no priest at all.[14] After a zealous persecution of unlicenced ministry, decrepit churches were soon expropriated for use as garages, museums and the like, and the Mexican Bishops, deported or underground, as a last resort of protest suspended all remaining ministry and urged the people to protest the persecution of their faith.[1] Calles presided over the worst persecution of Catholics and clergy in the history of Mexico, including the killing of hundreds of priests and other clergy.[citation needed]

    One contemporary is quoted as saying that "while President Calles is sane on all other matters, he completely loses control of himself when the matter of religion comes up, becomes livid in the face and pounds the table to express his hatred."[16] Wearing clerical garb outside of churches was outlawed during his rule and priests exercising their right of political speech could be imprisoned for five years.

    On November 18, 1926, Pope Pius XI promulgated the encyclical Iniquis Afflictisque decrying the severe persecution of the faithful in Mexico and the deprivation of the rights of the faithful and the Church.[17]

    The formal rebellion began on January 1, 1927 with the rebels calling themselves Cristeros because they felt they were fighting for Christ himself. The Cristeros' battle cry was ¡Viva Cristo Rey! ("Long live Christ the King!"). When Jalisco federal commander General Jesús Maria Ferreira moved on the rebels, he calmly stated that "it will be less a campaign than a hunt." Just as the Cristeros began to hold their own against the federal forces, the rebellion was ended by diplomatic means, in large part due to the pressure of United States Ambassador Dwight Whitney Morrow. The war had claimed the lives of some 90,000: 56,882 on the federal side, 30,000 Cristeros. Numerous civilians and Cristeros were killed in anticlerical raids, while Cristeros killed atheist teachers and people suspected of supporting the government, and even blew up a passenger train.

    The persecution was worst under the rule of Tabasco's notorious governor Tomás Garrido Canabal. Garrido's rule, which marked the apogee of Mexican anti-clericalism, was supported by the Radical Socialist Party of Tabasco (PRST) of which he was the leader.

    Sounds like Heaven for some of the radical secularists here at the EB.

    Viva Green Socialism!

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    1. Want to know how it is done in the Middle East, reread the reports on Arial Sharon, the Falange and what happened at the Palestinian camps of Sabra and Shatila between Sept. 16 and 18 in 1982.

      Sure the CHRISTIANS murdered the Palestinians...


      Not one Israeli/Jew KILLED anyone...

      The report was they SHOULD have known that the christians did want to round up palestinians for arrest and questioning.

      Yep. Israel SHOULD have known that the Christians were savages too...

      Delete
  9. IRONY

    The food stamp program, part of the Department of Agriculture, is pleased to be distributing the greatest amount of food stamps ever.

    Meanwhile, the Park Service, also part of the Department of Agriculture, asks us to "please do not feed the animals because the animals may grow dependent and not learn to take care of themselves."

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    1. :):):):)

      Excellent, Gag.

      b

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  10. South Beach face feeder was on LSD. I can't recall whether or no the Reefer has allowed whether that should be available in our pharmacies.

    b

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  11. Face feeder may have been trying some new LSD type drug called bath salts. We need to get this off the streets and into the pharmacies, toot quick. Reports are it makes you heat up, growl, eat other people, and you can hold off six police, unless they go fire arms on you.

    Perfect for spring break, and to get in touch with your inner Homo Ergaster.

    b

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  12. Libya, Syria, Egypt, Yemen, Lebanon and others have hated Israel and the Jews for over a century. They have collectively supported suicide bombers, war and boycotts. They have embraced the darkside.

    Now?

    It's a shame their own guns are turned on their own children...

    I will really reflect their situation over a nice lox, bagel and cream cheese just thanking all that is good and holy in the world that my enemies (AND I DO MEAN ENEMIES) are self destructing.

    In fact I will go so far as to say, it aint over yet and before it's over? Many more than have plotted, supported and tried to genocidally murder the jews will get more punishment...

    Can't say I didnt tell ya it wouldn't happen...

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  13. But let's focus the blame where it should be...

    those pesky Jews are still providing homes, roads and schools for fleeing Jews (and africans and arabs) all around Israel.

    Bibi is dragging us into war....

    btw, the Egyptian election news? care to burn down the other side's HEADQUARTERS? lol Funkin savages...

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  14. When did we inherit the “duty to protect”? It had to be after the Germans, the US and the UK firebombed London, Coventry, Dresden, Hamburg, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as they were all composed of “innocent civilians”. It had to have been after Viet Nam and Cambodia. The Russians, Japanese and Chinese “duty to protect” must be in the very early stages. What difference does it make to the dead who kills them?

    It is not our war.

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  15. "Responsibility to protect


    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia



    The responsibility to protect (R2P or RtoP) is a United Nations initiative established in 2005. It consists of an emerging norm, or set of principles, based on the idea that sovereignty is not a right, but a responsibility.[1] R2P focuses on preventing and halting four crimes: genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and ethnic cleansing, which it places under the generic umbrella term of, Mass Atrocity Crimes.[2] The Responsibility to Protect has three "pillars".
    1.A state has a responsibility to protect its population from mass atrocities,
    2.The international community has a responsibility to assist the state if it is unable to protect its population on its own.
    3.If the state fails to protect its citizens from mass atrocities and peaceful measures have failed, the international community has the responsibility to intervene through coercive measures such as economic sanctions. Military intervention is considered the last resort.[3][4]

    In the international community R2P is a norm, not a law.[5] R2P provides a framework for using tools that already exist, i.e. mediation, early warning mechanisms, economic sanctioning, and chapter VII powers, to prevent mass atrocities. Civil society organizations, States, regional organizations, and international institutions all have a role to play in the R2P process. The authority to employ the last resort and intervene militarily rests solely with United Nations Security Council and the General Assembly."

    This is what Brit Hume was referring to I believe. I think it is referred to both ways.

    The wild west was tamed and the 'law' was imposed.

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    1. "
      The wild west was tamed and the 'law' was imposed."


      Thanks to good gun-slinging lawyers and lawmen like Ash and the International Criminal Court.



      b

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    2. .

      Hey, Ash.

      Canada is PC Paradise, the Geneva of North America, why don't you guys invade Syria.

      We'll sit this one out.

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    3. Yes, it does appear you will. No oil to get.

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  16. 'A wind is shaking the House of God' even though 'it's built on a Rock.'


    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2012/05/29/bloomberg_articlesM4RZ1S6TTDW301-M4SG4.DTL

    This is really getting interesting, and certainly beats Syria for intrigue. The Scandal in now deep into the Vatican's Spiritual Banking Circles, and has widened to The City of London, financial hub of Everywhere. The worldwide priestly pedophilia issues have been pushed far to the sidelines, as well as contraceptive payments at Catholic Hospitals. The devil is screaming, and gnawing on raw human facial flesh, the Swiss Guards and Vatican Police are at full alert, and the Pope, though in deep inner prayer, is 'aware of the situation'.

    b

    b

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    1. And at this very moment, when needed most, Quirk craps out on the rescue mission, heads to Cartegena instead.

      b

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    2. .

      Nonsense, Bob, me and a few of the boys from the TLC just left a meeting of the Illuminati, and as soon as we pick up some cash from the secret ATM over at trhe Rothschild's bank, we will be flying over to the Bilderberger conference in Switerland where Dan Brown is the guest speaker.

      .

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    3. I'm at the KFC compound in Lewiston. My chief of staff Dale is meeting me. We'll be at Itsyeeyaya later. I no longer believe a word you say but keep me informed.

      Dale is Missouri-Synod. He has no problem with breaking into the Vatican.

      I can work with him.

      b

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    4. .

      When did they let Dale out?

      Is he allowed to go over to the KFC with that leg bracelet on?

      Anyway, good luck. Don't forget to take your drugs especially that small, salmon colored one.


      The Jackal

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    5. I'm only on Simvastanin and Chlorthanlidone now. They do wonders for comprehensive thought and contingency planning. We'll be heading Woplandward down through the River of No Return Wilderness, then east. If we ever get out of the Wilderness. We may fish the Middle Fork first. We believe we've ascertained Paolo "Paolito" Gabriele, aka The Butler, is being held in safe room number 9.

      Dale has no metal on or in his legs. I'm the one with the titanium hip. You've forgotten.

      We're traveling in Dale's 79 Datsun Sedan for clandestine reasons.

      Plus, he put in a homemade cigar lighter.

      b

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    6. .

      We may fish the Middle Fork first.


      Sure, go ahead. I'm sure the Butler won't give a damn. Take all the time you want.


      We're traveling in Dale's 79 Datsun Sedan for clandestine reasons.


      Sure. Makes sense. I'm sure none here or at the Vatican would notice a '79 Datsun. Just to be sure, why don't you paint it red, white, and blue and get about 100 clowns to accompany you.

      .

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    7. The Butler is being pressed, but not for time. He's in a holding cell after all. He'll be OK. He can wait, but the chinook only move upstream this time of year. We want to bring him some chinook roe, those Italians will eat anything, which you misremembered again as a small salmon colored pill, and also salmon fillets. We intend to raid the Vatican Wine Cellar when we are there as well. We have found out they have some really expensive stuff, and well aged too.


      The Datsun has a bubble top that you can stand up in, from when Dale tore the top off at a drive through, and remodeled it in bubble. No one will notice.


      We had counted on you to bring along 99 other clowns with you, but you're in Cartegena. Maxine told me so, and she's everywhere.

      b

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    8. .

      I'm only on Simvastanin and Chlorthanlidone now.

      Be careful with the Simvastatin. In a small percentage of users, long term use of the Zocor or high dosages can result in muscle weakness and leg cramps.


      Clorthanlidone? Isn't that the drug they start giving to patients right before the lobodomy? Usual protocol: a close relative signs off, the clorthlidone is prescribed, and when the patient becomes docile enough, BAM, the lobodomy.

      But I'm sure you know this.

      .

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    9. "Isn't that the drug they start giving to patients right before the lobodomy?"

      I don't think it could possibly be, as I've already had what's known as the EB Lobotomy, and you can't have two, can you?

      As for docility, I am having leg cramps and weakness but that's from the Simmy, just as you said, and my wife calls me a spastic, and says there is nothing docile about me when I get like that. She says I'm not even domestic, never mind docile.

      As for mental acuity, it's remarkable what getting the chlorestorol and blood pressure down will do will do for contingency planning but I mentioned that, no matter if you've already forgotten.

      Thanks for the concern.

      b

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    10. P.S. to Quirk: The mortality rate from an EB Lobotomy - and it's a non-invasive, non-surgical procedure - is said to be extremely high. And so far, according to the records, if any records are kept, I'm still the only known survivor. I'm still here, albeit, not 'fully'.

      b

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    11. .

      ...if any records are kept, I'm still the only known survivor. I'm still here, albeit, not 'fully'...


      No, that's where you are wrong. One of the effects of the lobodomy.

      You don't happen to see a white light do you? I've always been curious.

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  17. "May 28, 2012, 8:36 pm
    Our Imbecilic Constitution

    By SANFORD LEVINSON


    Advocating the adoption of the new Constitution drafted in Philadelphia, the authors of “The Federalist Papers” mocked the “imbecility” of the weak central government created by the Articles of Confederation.

    Nearly 225 years later, critics across the spectrum call the American political system dysfunctional, even pathological. What they don’t mention, though, is the role of the Constitution itself in generating the pathology.

    Ignore, for discussion’s sake, the clauses that helped to entrench chattel slavery until it was eliminated by a brutal Civil War. Begin with the Senate and its assignment of equal voting power to California and Wyoming; Vermont and Texas; New York and North Dakota. Consider that, although a majority of Americans since World War II have registered opposition to the Electoral College, we will participate this year in yet another election that “battleground states” will dominate while the three largest states will be largely ignored.

    Our vaunted system of “separation of powers” and “checks and balances” — a legacy of the founders’ mistrust of “factions” — means that we rarely have anything that can truly be described as a “government.” Save for those rare instances when one party has hefty control over four branches — the House of Representatives, the Senate, the White House and the Supreme Court — gridlock threatens. Elections are increasingly meaningless, at least in terms of producing results commensurate with the challenges facing the country.

    But if one must choose the worst single part of the Constitution, it is surely Article V, which has made our Constitution among the most difficult to amend of any in the world. The last truly significant constitutional change was the 22nd Amendment, added in 1951, to limit presidents to two terms. The near impossibility of amending the national Constitution not only prevents needed reforms; it also makes discussion seem futile and generates a complacent denial that there is anything to be concerned about.

    ..."

    http://campaignstops.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/05/28/our-imbecilic-constitution/?hp

    ReplyDelete
  18. Finally, "a multilateral institution designed to try to address some of these thorny issues" is acting on the thorny issue of international tourism.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/may/29/robert-mugabe-un-international-envoy-tourism?fb=native&CMP=FBCNETTXT9038

    This is what we need, a positive sign as spring slips away into summer.

    ...

    It is good the Constitution is relatively difficult to amend. Keeps fools like Ash from monkeying around with it, and from Canada, too.

    b

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The more I think about it, though, the multilateral international institution of the UN may be making a severe error here. Mugabe perhaps should be UN Agriculture Minister. After all, he did the nearly impossible, flipping Rhodesia from the 'bread basket of Africa' over to starvation nation Zimbabwe. With some real ethnic cleansing along the way, of both whites and blacks.

      "We don't need all these people around here anyway", he is quoted as saying, as the starvation began to grip.

      And, think what he has done for the price of wheat in Zimbabwe - two trillion a spoonful, if you can find the cash.

      What farmer worth his hoe can't make it with prices like those?

      Yes, he should be UN Agriculture Minister. He is able to manipulate crop prices and production like no one else on the planet.

      b

      Delete
  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Who done it?

    I don' know; an I don' care.

    ReplyDelete
  21. .

    OK

    So once you've hit the magic 200 number on posts under this new system, how do you get to view the newer posts on a stream?


    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Click "Load More" at bottom of thread (Firefox).

      I will be adding no more to that thread. Posts keep getting overwritten.

      I'm not sure there is much more to say.

      Delete
    2. Footnote on the health care exchange couple threads back:

      I took the time to dig into some level of detail because I think the Dems have the right idea on health care (much in the same sense that Rufus says they are on the right side of the energy picture) and the Republican "consumer-choice" option is a nasty piece of misdirection that will do very little to control cost escalation, which is a 180 degree reversal from my original opinion.


      Footnote to the asshole behind the blogger: fuck you.

      Delete
  22. "Clorthanlidone? Isn't that the drug they start giving to patients right before the lobodomy? Usual protocol: a close relative signs off, the clorthlidone is prescribed, and when the patient becomes docile enough, BAM, the lobodomy."

    ---

    Good to know Rufus is finally getting the help he needs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chlorthalidone though is counter indicated in those who smoke leaf and drink shine. There is a very high likely hood Reef's head might explode, pre-op.

      This does save on the surgery bill.

      b

      Delete
    2. .

      Bob, quit trying to prove you survived.

      Go lay down and look at that white light.

      .

      Delete
    3. Oh, all right. I do feel a little weary right now.

      b

      Delete
  23. Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has called the Internet a threat to national security and a dangerous double-edged knife that has benefits as well as risks.

    Since 2009, Mr. Khamenei has instructed security forces to train and form units to battle cyberattacks to curb the influence of social-media websites.

    In March, Mr. Khamenei issued a decree ordering the creation of the Supreme Council of Cyberspace, a committee consisting of high-level military and intelligence officials tasked with supervising cyber activity and warfare.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Any serious assessment of the nuclear world of the future argues for keeping the triad and modernizing it rapidly. In a world with fewer nuclear weapon systems but more people and threats to deter, we need more survivability and less firepower: The “diversity premium” is rising.

    ...

    Arms control mavens could actually play a useful role in this environment. The Hoss report points out a “basic deficiency in the framework of ongoing nuclear arms talks: the exclusion of everyone except for Americans and Russians.”

    The relaxation in U.S.-Russia nuclear tensions ought rightly to be viewed as an opportunity to try to “globalize” arms control treaties​—​arguably the single most stabilizing thing that could happen in East Asia would be to limit Chinese inter-mediate-range missiles. Alas, it’s clear that our commander in chief and his favorite general would rather start with “American Zero” than go global.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Bashar al-Assad's regime was facing increasing isolation yesterday with nearly a dozen Western states expelling Syrian envoys in retaliation for the Houla massacre, and with renewed calls for the United Nations to impose far-reaching sanctions.

    ...

    Most of the 108 victims of the Houla massacre were executed at point-blank range in their homes and fewer than 20 were killed by shellfire, the UN human rights office said yesterday.

    ...

    Witnesses told Human Rights Watch that at noon on 25 May anti-government protesters gathered in Taldou. They were shot at by soldiers at a checkpoint.

    ReplyDelete
  26. The final immortality narrative is Legacy. It comes in two varieties: fame and progeny.

    ...

    People also want to live on through their children. Your genes live on through your children, but genes are simply machines for making proteins in response to environmental cues.

    You are merely the disposable container that genes use to make more copies of themselves. Reproduction, as satisfying as most people find it, is no way to preserve one’s individual consciousness.

    ReplyDelete
  27. On this day in 1953, two people successfully climbed to the top of Mount Everest for the first time ever. Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay of Nepal were the first people to reach the summit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought it was Edmund Hillary and Hillary Clinton.

      b

      Delete
  28. Since news of the unthinkable attack first broke, the big question has been, Why? Why did the man attack the other? Why were they naked? Why did the attacker turn into a cannibal on the causeway?

    Some believe he was under the influence of heavy drugs.

    The head of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, Armando Aguilar, said cases related to the type of drugs known as “bath salts” are not new locally.


    http://miami.cbslocal.com/2012/05/29/police-seek-witnesses-in-causeway-cannibal-attack/

    And I thought we'd seen everything.

    b

    ReplyDelete
  29. Houla looks to me to be a suburb of Homs, some 20 miles to the NW (map link)

    Regarding the Homs/Houla region:

    The couple even cracked jokes at the expense of the people of Homs, where scores of rebels have been killed in sieges and rocket attacks by Assad's forces, The Telegraph reported.

    On Jan. 16, Bashar Assad sent his wife an email with a subject line "Student who obtained 0% on an exam."

    The email contained a list of goofball one-liners, supposedly a dim-witted student's answers to test questions.

    For example, one question asked, "In which battle did Napoleon die?" The answer was, "His last battle."

    The next day, Asma Assad forwarded the message to family members with the subject line, "A really bright Homsi student!"

    ReplyDelete
  30. Mitt Romney has clinched the Republican nomination for president with a win in the Texas primary.

    ReplyDelete
  31. When the head of JPMorgan Chase met with shareholders to answer for a trading loss of more than $2 billion Tuesday, it was against an evolving political backdrop: Donors from big banks are betting on Mitt Romney to defeat President Obama and repeal new restraints on risky, large-scale investments.

    “There’s no doubt that there’s been a big diminution of support for the president,’’ said William M. Daley, Obama’s former chief of staff and a former top JPMorgan Chase executive. “People in the financial services sector are saying, ‘The president has been too tough on us, both in policy and on rhetoric.’ ’’

    The top five donor groups in Romney’s campaign are individuals and political action committees associated with large financial institutions, led by Wall Street giants Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase, according to information compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan research group that tracks campaign donations.

    LINK

    Must have been the teeth in the fine print of the Dodd-Frank legislation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dodd was the top recipient in the Senate of Wall Street dollars.
      Followed by BHO.

      Delete
    2. That was sarcasm of course. The Obama administration has done nothing to seriously impact banking, either regional commercial or Wall St investment.

      Delete
  32. Beijing also tightly controls the power market, limiting State Grid's ability to seek terms from power suppliers or pass on costs to customers.

    Beijing's leaders over the past few years have pushed State Grid as well as other state-run behemoths to invest overseas as part of a broader effort to use China's financial firepower to strike deals.

    The pressure has been especially strong on China's energy companies, which are seen as potential national champions in an increasingly competitive global market.

    ReplyDelete