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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Was Obama inspired by his speech memorializing the 50th anniversary of the Martin Luther King speech to rethink an attack on Syria? At least, did it give him pause?

Listen to Martin Luther King talking about the US getting involved in a civil war:


Are there not enough American problems to address? Enough of these idiotic wars that only serve the political interests of ALL the usual suspects.




Enjoy his entire speech on opposing  government actions - Speak Out !:





Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence
By Rev. Martin Luther King
4 April 1967

Speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., on April 4, 1967, at a meeting of Clergy and Laity Concerned at Riverside Church in New York City

I come to this magnificent house of worship tonight because my conscience leaves me no other choice. I join with you in this meeting because I am in deepest agreement with the aims and work of the organization which has brought us together: Clergy and Laymen Concerned about Vietnam. The recent statement of your executive committee are the sentiments of my own heart and I found myself in full accord when I read its opening lines: "A time comes when silence is betrayal." That time has come for us in relation to Vietnam.

The truth of these words is beyond doubt but the mission to which they call us is a most difficult one. Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government's policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought within one's own bosom and in the surrounding world. Moreover when the issues at hand seem as perplexed as they often do in the case of this dreadful conflict we are always on the verge of being mesmerized by uncertainty; but we must move on.

Some of us who have already begun to break the silence of the night have found that the calling to speak is often a vocation of agony, but we must speak. We must speak with all the humility that is appropriate to our limited vision, but we must speak. And we must rejoice as well, for surely this is the first time in our nation's history that a significant number of its religious leaders have chosen to move beyond the prophesying of smooth patriotism to the high grounds of a firm dissent based upon the mandates of conscience and the reading of history. Perhaps a new spirit is rising among us. If it is, let us trace its movement well and pray that our own inner being may be sensitive to its guidance, for we are deeply in need of a new way beyond the darkness that seems so close around us.

Over the past two years, as I have moved to break the betrayal of my own silences and to speak from the burnings of my own heart, as I have called for radical departures from the destruction of Vietnam, many persons have questioned me about the wisdom of my path. At the heart of their concerns this query has often loomed large and loud: Why are you speaking about war, Dr. King? Why are you joining the voices of dissent? Peace and civil rights don't mix, they say. Aren't you hurting the cause of your people, they ask? And when I hear them, though I often understand the source of their concern, I am nevertheless greatly saddened, for such questions mean that the inquirers have not really known me, my commitment or my calling. Indeed, their questions suggest that they do not know the world in which they live.

In the light of such tragic misunderstandings, I deem it of signal importance to try to state clearly, and I trust concisely, why I believe that the path from Dexter Avenue Baptist Church -- the church in Montgomery, Alabama, where I began my pastorate -- leads clearly to this sanctuary tonight.

I come to this platform tonight to make a passionate plea to my beloved nation. This speech is not addressed to Hanoi or to the National Liberation Front. It is not addressed to China or to Russia.

Nor is it an attempt to overlook the ambiguity of the total situation and the need for a collective solution to the tragedy of Vietnam. Neither is it an attempt to make North Vietnam or the National Liberation Front paragons of virtue, nor to overlook the role they can play in a successful resolution of the problem. While they both may have justifiable reason to be suspicious of the good faith of the United States, life and history give eloquent testimony to the fact that conflicts are never resolved without trustful give and take on both sides.

Tonight, however, I wish not to speak with Hanoi and the NLF, but rather to my fellow Americans, who, with me, bear the greatest responsibility in ending a conflict that has exacted a heavy price on both continents.

The Importance of Vietnam
Since I am a preacher by trade, I suppose it is not surprising that I have seven major reasons for bringing Vietnam into the field of my moral vision. There is at the outset a very obvious and almost facile connection between the war in Vietnam and the struggle I, and others, have been waging in America. A few years ago there was a shining moment in that struggle. It seemed as if there was a real promise of hope for the poor -- both black and white -- through the poverty program. There were experiments, hopes, new beginnings. Then came the buildup in Vietnam and I watched the program broken and eviscerated as if it were some idle political plaything of a society gone mad on war, and I knew that America would never invest the necessary funds or energies in rehabilitation of its poor so long as adventures like Vietnam continued to draw men and skills and money like some demonic destructive suction tube. So I was increasingly compelled to see the war as an enemy of the poor and to attack it as such.

Perhaps the more tragic recognition of reality took place when it became clear to me that the war was doing far more than devastating the hopes of the poor at home. It was sending their sons and their brothers and their husbands to fight and to die in extraordinarily high proportions relative to the rest of the population. We were taking the black young men who had been crippled by our society and sending them eight thousand miles away to guarantee liberties in Southeast Asia which they had not found in southwest Georgia and East Harlem. So we have been repeatedly faced with the cruel irony of watching Negro and white boys on TV screens as they kill and die together for a nation that has been unable to seat them together in the same schools. So we watch them in brutal solidarity burning the huts of a poor village, but we realize that they would never live on the same block in Detroit. I could not be silent in the face of such cruel manipulation of the poor.

My third reason moves to an even deeper level of awareness, for it grows out of my experience in the ghettoes of the North over the last three years -- especially the last three summers. As I have walked among the desperate, rejected and angry young men I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems. I have tried to offer them my deepest compassion while maintaining my conviction that social change comes most meaningfully through nonviolent action. But they asked -- and rightly so -- what about Vietnam? They asked if our own nation wasn't using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today -- my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.

For those who ask the question, "Aren't you a civil rights leader?" and thereby mean to exclude me from the movement for peace, I have this further answer. In 1957 when a group of us formed the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, we chose as our motto: "To save the soul of America." We were convinced that we could not limit our vision to certain rights for black people, but instead affirmed the conviction that America would never be free or saved from itself unless the descendants of its slaves were loosed completely from the shackles they still wear. In a way we were agreeing with Langston Hughes, that black bard of Harlem, who had written earlier:


O, yes,
I say it plain,
America never was America to me,
And yet I swear this oath--
America will be!

Now, it should be incandescently clear that no one who has any concern for the integrity and life of America today can ignore the present war. If America's soul becomes totally poisoned, part of the autopsy must read Vietnam. It can never be saved so long as it destroys the deepest hopes of men the world over. So it is that those of us who are yet determined that America will be are led down the path of protest and dissent, working for the health of our land.

As if the weight of such a commitment to the life and health of America were not enough, another burden of responsibility was placed upon me in 1964; and I cannot forget that the Nobel Prize for Peace was also a commission -- a commission to work harder than I had ever worked before for "the brotherhood of man." This is a calling that takes me beyond national allegiances, but even if it were not present I would yet have to live with the meaning of my commitment to the ministry of Jesus Christ. To me the relationship of this ministry to the making of peace is so obvious that I sometimes marvel at those who ask me why I am speaking against the war. Could it be that they do not know that the good news was meant for all men -- for Communist and capitalist, for their children and ours, for black and for white, for revolutionary and conservative? Have they forgotten that my ministry is in obedience to the one who loved his enemies so fully that he died for them? What then can I say to the "Vietcong" or to Castro or to Mao as a faithful minister of this one? Can I threaten them with death or must I not share with them my life?

Finally, as I try to delineate for you and for myself the road that leads from Montgomery to this place I would have offered all that was most valid if I simply said that I must be true to my conviction that I share with all men the calling to be a son of the living God. Beyond the calling of race or nation or creed is this vocation of sonship and brotherhood, and because I believe that the Father is deeply concerned especially for his suffering and helpless and outcast children, I come tonight to speak for them.

This I believe to be the privilege and the burden of all of us who deem ourselves bound by allegiances and loyalties which are broader and deeper than nationalism and which go beyond our nation's self-defined goals and positions. We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy, for no document from human hands can make these humans any less our brothers.

Strange Liberators
And as I ponder the madness of Vietnam and search within myself for ways to understand and respond to compassion my mind goes constantly to the people of that peninsula. I speak now not of the soldiers of each side, not of the junta in Saigon, but simply of the people who have been living under the curse of war for almost three continuous decades now. I think of them too because it is clear to me that there will be no meaningful solution there until some attempt is made to know them and hear their broken cries.

They must see Americans as strange liberators. The Vietnamese people proclaimed their own independence in 1945 after a combined French and Japanese occupation, and before the Communist revolution in China. They were led by Ho Chi Minh. Even though they quoted the American Declaration of Independence in their own document of freedom, we refused to recognize them. Instead, we decided to support France in its reconquest of her former colony.

Our government felt then that the Vietnamese people were not "ready" for independence, and we again fell victim to the deadly Western arrogance that has poisoned the international atmosphere for so long. With that tragic decision we rejected a revolutionary government seeking self-determination, and a government that had been established not by China (for whom the Vietnamese have no great love) but by clearly indigenous forces that included some Communists. For the peasants this new government meant real land reform, one of the most important needs in their lives.

For nine years following 1945 we denied the people of Vietnam the right of independence. For nine years we vigorously supported the French in their abortive effort to recolonize Vietnam.

Before the end of the war we were meeting eighty percent of the French war costs. Even before the French were defeated at Dien Bien Phu, they began to despair of the reckless action, but we did not. We encouraged them with our huge financial and military supplies to continue the war even after they had lost the will. Soon we would be paying almost the full costs of this tragic attempt at recolonization.

After the French were defeated it looked as if independence and land reform would come again through the Geneva agreements. But instead there came the United States, determined that Ho should not unify the temporarily divided nation, and the peasants watched again as we supported one of the most vicious modern dictators -- our chosen man, Premier Diem. The peasants watched and cringed as Diem ruthlessly routed out all opposition, supported their extortionist landlords and refused even to discuss reunification with the north. The peasants watched as all this was presided over by U.S. influence and then by increasing numbers of U.S. troops who came to help quell the insurgency that Diem's methods had aroused. When Diem was overthrown they may have been happy, but the long line of military dictatorships seemed to offer no real change -- especially in terms of their need for land and peace.

The only change came from America as we increased our troop commitments in support of governments which were singularly corrupt, inept and without popular support. All the while the people read our leaflets and received regular promises of peace and democracy -- and land reform. Now they languish under our bombs and consider us -- not their fellow Vietnamese --the real enemy. They move sadly and apathetically as we herd them off the land of their fathers into concentration camps where minimal social needs are rarely met. They know they must move or be destroyed by our bombs. So they go -- primarily women and children and the aged.

They watch as we poison their water, as we kill a million acres of their crops. They must weep as the bulldozers roar through their areas preparing to destroy the precious trees. They wander into the hospitals, with at least twenty casualties from American firepower for one "Vietcong"-inflicted injury. So far we may have killed a million of them -- mostly children. They wander into the towns and see thousands of the children, homeless, without clothes, running in packs on the streets like animals. They see the children, degraded by our soldiers as they beg for food. They see the children selling their sisters to our soldiers, soliciting for their mothers.

What do the peasants think as we ally ourselves with the landlords and as we refuse to put any action into our many words concerning land reform? What do they think as we test our latest weapons on them, just as the Germans tested out new medicine and new tortures in the concentration camps of Europe? Where are the roots of the independent Vietnam we claim to be building? Is it among these voiceless ones?

We have destroyed their two most cherished institutions: the family and the village. We have destroyed their land and their crops. We have cooperated in the crushing of the nation's only non-Communist revolutionary political force -- the unified Buddhist church. We have supported the enemies of the peasants of Saigon. We have corrupted their women and children and killed their men. What liberators?

Now there is little left to build on -- save bitterness. Soon the only solid physical foundations remaining will be found at our military bases and in the concrete of the concentration camps we call fortified hamlets. The peasants may well wonder if we plan to build our new Vietnam on such grounds as these? Could we blame them for such thoughts? We must speak for them and raise the questions they cannot raise. These too are our brothers.

Perhaps the more difficult but no less necessary task is to speak for those who have been designated as our enemies. What of the National Liberation Front -- that strangely anonymous group we call VC or Communists? What must they think of us in America when they realize that we permitted the repression and cruelty of Diem which helped to bring them into being as a resistance group in the south? What do they think of our condoning the violence which led to their own taking up of arms? How can they believe in our integrity when now we speak of "aggression from the north" as if there were nothing more essential to the war? How can they trust us when now we charge them with violence after the murderous reign of Diem and charge them with violence while we pour every new weapon of death into their land? Surely we must understand their feelings even if we do not condone their actions. Surely we must see that the men we supported pressed them to their violence. Surely we must see that our own computerized plans of destruction simply dwarf their greatest acts.

How do they judge us when our officials know that their membership is less than twenty-five percent Communist and yet insist on giving them the blanket name? What must they be thinking when they know that we are aware of their control of major sections of Vietnam and yet we appear ready to allow national elections in which this highly organized political parallel government will have no part? They ask how we can speak of free elections when the Saigon press is censored and controlled by the military junta. And they are surely right to wonder what kind of new government we plan to help form without them -- the only party in real touch with the peasants. They question our political goals and they deny the reality of a peace settlement from which they will be excluded. Their questions are frighteningly relevant. Is our nation planning to build on political myth again and then shore it up with the power of new violence?

Here is the true meaning and value of compassion and nonviolence when it helps us to see the enemy's point of view, to hear his questions, to know his assessment of ourselves. For from his view we may indeed see the basic weaknesses of our own condition, and if we are mature, we may learn and grow and profit from the wisdom of the brothers who are called the opposition.

So, too, with Hanoi. In the north, where our bombs now pummel the land, and our mines endanger the waterways, we are met by a deep but understandable mistrust. To speak for them is to explain this lack of confidence in Western words, and especially their distrust of American intentions now. In Hanoi are the men who led the nation to independence against the Japanese and the French, the men who sought membership in the French commonwealth and were betrayed by the weakness of Paris and the willfulness of the colonial armies. It was they who led a second struggle against French domination at tremendous costs, and then were persuaded to give up the land they controlled between the thirteenth and seventeenth parallel as a temporary measure at Geneva. After 1954 they watched us conspire with Diem to prevent elections which would have surely brought Ho Chi Minh to power over a united Vietnam, and they realized they had been betrayed again.

When we ask why they do not leap to negotiate, these things must be remembered. Also it must be clear that the leaders of Hanoi considered the presence of American troops in support of the Diem regime to have been the initial military breach of the Geneva agreements concerning foreign troops, and they remind us that they did not begin to send in any large number of supplies or men until American forces had moved into the tens of thousands.

Hanoi remembers how our leaders refused to tell us the truth about the earlier North Vietnamese overtures for peace, how the president claimed that none existed when they had clearly been made. Ho Chi Minh has watched as America has spoken of peace and built up its forces, and now he has surely heard of the increasing international rumors of American plans for an invasion of the north. He knows the bombing and shelling and mining we are doing are part of traditional pre-invasion strategy. Perhaps only his sense of humor and of irony can save him when he hears the most powerful nation of the world speaking of aggression as it drops thousands of bombs on a poor weak nation more than eight thousand miles away from its shores.

At this point I should make it clear that while I have tried in these last few minutes to give a voice to the voiceless on Vietnam and to understand the arguments of those who are called enemy, I am as deeply concerned about our troops there as anything else. For it occurs to me that what we are submitting them to in Vietnam is not simply the brutalizing process that goes on in any war where armies face each other and seek to destroy. We are adding cynicism to the process of death, for they must know after a short period there that none of the things we claim to be fighting for are really involved. Before long they must know that their government has sent them into a struggle among Vietnamese, and the more sophisticated surely realize that we are on the side of the wealthy and the secure while we create hell for the poor.

This Madness Must Cease
Somehow this madness must cease. We must stop now. I speak as a child of God and brother to the suffering poor of Vietnam. I speak for those whose land is being laid waste, whose homes are being destroyed, whose culture is being subverted. I speak for the poor of America who are paying the double price of smashed hopes at home and death and corruption in Vietnam. I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours.

This is the message of the great Buddhist leaders of Vietnam. Recently one of them wrote these words:

"Each day the war goes on the hatred increases in the heart of the Vietnamese and in the hearts of those of humanitarian instinct. The Americans are forcing even their friends into becoming their enemies. It is curious that the Americans, who calculate so carefully on the possibilities of military victory, do not realize that in the process they are incurring deep psychological and political defeat. The image of America will never again be the image of revolution, freedom and democracy, but the image of violence and militarism."

If we continue, there will be no doubt in my mind and in the mind of the world that we have no honorable intentions in Vietnam. It will become clear that our minimal expectation is to occupy it as an American colony and men will not refrain from thinking that our maximum hope is to goad China into a war so that we may bomb her nuclear installations. If we do not stop our war against the people of Vietnam immediately the world will be left with no other alternative than to see this as some horribly clumsy and deadly game we have decided to play.

The world now demands a maturity of America that we may not be able to achieve. It demands that we admit that we have been wrong from the beginning of our adventure in Vietnam, that we have been detrimental to the life of the Vietnamese people. The situation is one in which we must be ready to turn sharply from our present ways.

In order to atone for our sins and errors in Vietnam, we should take the initiative in bringing a halt to this tragic war. I would like to suggest five concrete things that our government should do immediately to begin the long and difficult process of extricating ourselves from this nightmarish conflict:


End all bombing in North and South Vietnam.
Declare a unilateral cease-fire in the hope that such action will create the atmosphere for negotiation.
Take immediate steps to prevent other battlegrounds in Southeast Asia by curtailing our military buildup in Thailand and our interference in Laos.
Realistically accept the fact that the National Liberation Front has substantial support in South Vietnam and must thereby play a role in any meaningful negotiations and in any future Vietnam government.
Set a date that we will remove all foreign troops from Vietnam in accordance with the 1954 Geneva agreement.

Part of our ongoing commitment might well express itself in an offer to grant asylum to any Vietnamese who fears for his life under a new regime which included the Liberation Front. Then we must make what reparations we can for the damage we have done. We most provide the medical aid that is badly needed, making it available in this country if necessary.

Protesting The War
Meanwhile we in the churches and synagogues have a continuing task while we urge our government to disengage itself from a disgraceful commitment. We must continue to raise our voices if our nation persists in its perverse ways in Vietnam. We must be prepared to match actions with words by seeking out every creative means of protest possible.

As we counsel young men concerning military service we must clarify for them our nation's role in Vietnam and challenge them with the alternative of conscientious objection. I am pleased to say that this is the path now being chosen by more than seventy students at my own alma mater, Morehouse College, and I recommend it to all who find the American course in Vietnam a dishonorable and unjust one. Moreover I would encourage all ministers of draft age to give up their ministerial exemptions and seek status as conscientious objectors. These are the times for real choices and not false ones. We are at the moment when our lives must be placed on the line if our nation is to survive its own folly. Every man of humane convictions must decide on the protest that best suits his convictions, but we must all protest.

There is something seductively tempting about stopping there and sending us all off on what in some circles has become a popular crusade against the war in Vietnam. I say we must enter the struggle, but I wish to go on now to say something even more disturbing. The war in Vietnam is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit, and if we ignore this sobering reality we will find ourselves organizing clergy- and laymen-concerned committees for the next generation. They will be concerned about Guatemala and Peru. They will be concerned about Thailand and Cambodia. They will be concerned about Mozambique and South Africa. We will be marching for these and a dozen other names and attending rallies without end unless there is a significant and profound change in American life and policy. Such thoughts take us beyond Vietnam, but not beyond our calling as sons of the living God.

In 1957 a sensitive American official overseas said that it seemed to him that our nation was on the wrong side of a world revolution. During the past ten years we have seen emerge a pattern of suppression which now has justified the presence of U.S. military "advisors" in Venezuela. This need to maintain social stability for our investments accounts for the counter-revolutionary action of American forces in Guatemala. It tells why American helicopters are being used against guerrillas in Colombia and why American napalm and green beret forces have already been active against rebels in Peru. It is with such activity in mind that the words of the late John F. Kennedy come back to haunt us. Five years ago he said, "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable."

Increasingly, by choice or by accident, this is the role our nation has taken -- the role of those who make peaceful revolution impossible by refusing to give up the privileges and the pleasures that come from the immense profits of overseas investment.

I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a "thing-oriented" society to a "person-oriented" society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.

A true revolution of values will soon cause us to question the fairness and justice of many of our past and present policies. n the one hand we are called to play the good Samaritan on life's roadside; but that will be only an initial act. One day we must come to see that the whole Jericho road must be transformed so that men and women will not be constantly beaten and robbed as they make their journey on life's highway. True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring. A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth. With righteous indignation, it will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries, and say: "This is not just." It will look at our alliance with the landed gentry of Latin America and say: "This is not just." The Western arrogance of feeling that it has everything to teach others and nothing to learn from them is not just. A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war: "This way of settling differences is not just." This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation's homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into veins of people normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.

America, the richest and most powerful nation in the world, can well lead the way in this revolution of values. There is nothing, except a tragic death wish, to prevent us from reordering our priorities, so that the pursuit of peace will take precedence over the pursuit of war. There is nothing to keep us from molding a recalcitrant status quo with bruised hands until we have fashioned it into a brotherhood.

This kind of positive revolution of values is our best defense against communism. War is not the answer. Communism will never be defeated by the use of atomic bombs or nuclear weapons. Let us not join those who shout war and through their misguided passions urge the United States to relinquish its participation in the United Nations. These are days which demand wise restraint and calm reasonableness. We must not call everyone a Communist or an appeaser who advocates the seating of Red China in the United Nations and who recognizes that hate and hysteria are not the final answers to the problem of these turbulent days. We must not engage in a negative anti-communism, but rather in a positive thrust for democracy, realizing that our greatest defense against communism is to take offensive action in behalf of justice. We must with positive action seek to remove thosse conditions of poverty, insecurity and injustice which are the fertile soil in which the seed of communism grows and develops.

The People Are Important
These are revolutionary times. All over the globe men are revolting against old systems of exploitation and oppression and out of the wombs of a frail world new systems of justice and equality are being born. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are rising up as never before. "The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light." We in the West must support these revolutions. It is a sad fact that, because of comfort, complacency, a morbid fear of communism, and our proneness to adjust to injustice, the Western nations that initiated so much of the revolutionary spirit of the modern world have now become the arch anti-revolutionaries. This has driven many to feel that only Marxism has the revolutionary spirit. Therefore, communism is a judgement against our failure to make democracy real and follow through on the revolutions we initiated. Our only hope today lies in our ability to recapture the revolutionary spirit and go out into a sometimes hostile world declaring eternal hostility to poverty, racism, and militarism. With this powerful commitment we shall boldly challenge the status quo and unjust mores and thereby speed the day when "every valley shall be exalted, and every moutain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight and the rough places plain."

A genuine revolution of values means in the final analysis that our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Every nation must now develop an overriding loyalty to mankind as a whole in order to preserve the best in their individual societies.

This call for a world-wide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one's tribe, race, class and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing and unconditional love for all men. This oft misunderstood and misinterpreted concept -- so readily dismissed by the Nietzsches of the world as a weak and cowardly force -- has now become an absolute necessity for the survival of man. When I speak of love I am not speaking of some sentimental and weak response. I am speaking of that force which all of the great religions have seen as the supreme unifying principle of life. Love is somehow the key that unlocks the door which leads to ultimate reality. This Hindu-Moslem-Christian-Jewish-Buddhist belief about ultimate reality is beautifully summed up in the first epistle of Saint John:

Let us love one another; for love is God and everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. If we love one another God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

Let us hope that this spirit will become the order of the day. We can no longer afford to worship the god of hate or bow before the altar of retaliation. The oceans of history are made turbulent by the ever-rising tides of hate. History is cluttered with the wreckage of nations and individuals that pursued this self-defeating path of hate. As Arnold Toynbee says : "Love is the ultimate force that makes for the saving choice of life and good against the damning choice of death and evil. Therefore the first hope in our inventory must be the hope that love is going to have the last word."

We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked and dejected with a lost opportunity. The "tide in the affairs of men" does not remain at the flood; it ebbs. We may cry out deperately for time to pause in her passage, but time is deaf to every plea and rushes on. Over the bleached bones and jumbled residue of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words: "Too late." There is an invisible book of life that faithfully records our vigilance or our neglect. "The moving finger writes, and having writ moves on..." We still have a choice today; nonviolent coexistence or violent co-annihilation.

We must move past indecision to action. We must find new ways to speak for peace in Vietnam and justice throughout the developing world -- a world that borders on our doors. If we do not act we shall surely be dragged down the long dark and shameful corridors of time reserved for those who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight.

Now let us begin. Now let us rededicate ourselves to the long and bitter -- but beautiful -- struggle for a new world. This is the callling of the sons of God, and our brothers wait eagerly for our response. Shall we say the odds are too great? Shall we tell them the struggle is too hard? Will our message be that the forces of American life militate against their arrival as full men, and we send our deepest regrets? Or will there be another message, of longing, of hope, of solidarity with their yearnings, of commitment to their cause, whatever the cost? The choice is ours, and though we might prefer it otherwise we must choose in this crucial moment of human history.

As that noble bard of yesterday, James Russell Lowell, eloquently stated:

Once to every man and nation
Comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth and falsehood,
For the good or evil side;
Some great cause, God's new Messiah,
Off'ring each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever
Twixt that darkness and that light.

Though the cause of evil prosper,
Yet 'tis truth alone is strong;
Though her portion be the scaffold,
And upon the throne be wrong:
Yet that scaffold sways the future,
And behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow
Keeping watch above his own.
New comment section added January 16, 2012 

170 comments:

  1. Notable was the absence of the only black Senator from the proceedings.

    A Republican, he wasn't invited.

    Hard to believe but true.

    There were no black Senators 50 years ago, IIRC.


    >>>>Sen. Tim Scott wasn’t invited to event commemorating MLK march on Washington

    BY JOEL GEHRKE | AUGUST 28, 2013 AT 3:35 PM

    Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., did not get an invite to the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of...
    Sen. Tim Scott, R.-S.C., the only African American serving in the United States Senate, wasn't invited to the event commemorating the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King's march on Washington, though a host of Democratic luminaries spoke on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

    “Senator Scott was not invited to speak at the event,” Greg Blair, a spokesman for the South Carolina lawmaker, said in a statement to the Washington Examiner. “The senator believes today is a day to remember the extraordinary accomplishments and sacrifices of Dr. King, Congressman John Lewis, and an entire generation of black leaders. Today’s anniversary should simply serve as an opportunity to reflect upon how their actions moved our country forward in a remarkable way.”

    The event organizers didn't completely exclude Republicans from the event — former President George W. Bush, for instance, received an invitation, but he couldn't attend as he is recovering from surgery — but the slate of speakers was filled with names such as former President Clinton, Gov. Martin O'Malley, D-Md., Oprah Winfrey, Jamie Foxx and others.<<<<

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/sen.-tim-scott-wasnt-invited-to-event-commemorating-mlk-march-on-washington/article/2534830

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Saint Martin Luther King is turning in his grave, because he was a Republican. It was a no-brainer. The KKK was Democrat.

      Delete
    2. Saint MartinKing has been replaced by Saint HoodieMartin.

      Delete
    3. Martin said:

      10 days before his assassination, at the annual convention on the Rabbinical Assembly, Dr. King said:

      “The response of some of the so-called young militants does not represent the position of the vast majority of Negroes. There are some who are color-consumed and they see a kind of mystique in blackness or in being colored, and anything non-colored is condemned. We do not follow that course.... Peace for Israel means security, and we must stand with all our might to protect her right to exist, its territorial integrity and the right to use whatever sea lanes it needs. Israel is one of the great outposts of democracy in the world, and a marvelous example of what can be done, how desert land can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy. Peace for Israel means security, and that security must be a reality.”

      Delete
    4. The Israel of 1967 and 2013. About as different over time as Miley Cyprus.

      Delete
    5. Yeah, today there are over 1.2 MILLION arabs as full citizens.

      Delete
    6. You really dont KNOW squat about Israel.

      Delete
  2. Moscow: The artist behind mischievous portrayals of Russia's president and prime minister in women's underwear has fled the country, his colleagues have said.

    That's good, because otherwise he'd be given a ride to the police station and given a Strontium milk shake.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He'd be welcomed here.

      O'blunder is in a pickle, pickle, pickle now.

      I really haven't made up my mind yet to attack Syria or not, he says.

      Didn't he say just yesterday that Assad must be punished?

      Both Biden and Obama years ago said the President should be impeached if he did such a thing without Congressional approval if it were not an emergency situation, which this certainly is not.

      Pickle pickle pickle
      Piddle piddle piddle piddle

      as my favorite aunt used to say.



      Delete
    2. His moistened finger in the air is starting to tell him he better not move.

      Delete
  3. ...The peasants watched as all this was presided over by U.S. influence and then by increasing numbers of U.S. troops who came to help quell the insurgency that Diem's methods had aroused. When Diem was overthrown they may have been happy, but the long line of military dictatorships seemed to offer no real change -- especially in terms of their need for land and peace.

    The only change came from America as we increased our troop commitments in support of governments which were singularly corrupt, inept and without popular support. All the while the people read our leaflets and received regular promises of peace and democracy -- and land reform. Now they languish under our bombs and consider us -- not their fellow Vietnamese --the real enemy. They move sadly and apathetically as we herd them off the land of their fathers into concentration camps where minimal social needs are rarely met. They know they must move or be destroyed by our bombs. So they go -- primarily women and children and the aged.

    They watch as we poison their water, as we kill a million acres of their crops. They must weep as the bulldozers roar through their areas preparing to destroy the precious trees. They wander into the hospitals, with at least twenty casualties from American firepower for one "Vietcong"-inflicted injury. So far we may have killed a million of them -- mostly children. They wander into the towns and see thousands of the children, homeless, without clothes, running in packs on the streets like animals. They see the children, degraded by our soldiers as they beg for food. They see the children selling their sisters to our soldiers, soliciting for their mothers.

    What do the peasants think as we ally ourselves with the landlords and as we refuse to put any action into our many words concerning land reform? What do they think as we test our latest weapons on them, just as the Germans tested out new medicine and new tortures in the concentration camps of Europe? Where are the roots of the independent Vietnam we claim to be building? Is it among these voiceless ones?

    ReplyDelete
  4. ...This I believe to be the privilege and the burden of all of us who deem ourselves bound by allegiances and loyalties which are broader and deeper than nationalism and which go beyond our nation's self-defined goals and positions. We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy, for no document from human hands can make these humans any less our brothers.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Replies
    1. He thinks King was talking about equality of outcome, which depends on personal talent and ambition, when all King was talking about was equality of opportunity. But we already knew Obummer was a socialist.

      Delete
  6. So, too, with Hanoi. In the north, where our bombs now pummel the land, and our mines endanger the waterways, we are met by a deep but understandable mistrust. To speak for them is to explain this lack of confidence in Western words, and especially their distrust of American intentions now. In Hanoi are the men who led the nation to independence against the Japanese and the French, the men who sought membership in the French commonwealth and were betrayed by the weakness of Paris and the willfulness of the colonial armies. It was they who led a second struggle against French domination at tremendous costs, and then were persuaded to give up the land they controlled between the thirteenth and seventeenth parallel as a temporary measure at Geneva.

    After 1954 they watched us conspire with Diem to prevent elections which would have surely brought Ho Chi Minh to power over a united Vietnam, and they realized they had been betrayed again.

    When we ask why they do not leap to negotiate, these things must be remembered. Also it must be clear that the leaders of Hanoi considered the presence of American troops in support of the Diem regime to have been the initial military breach of the Geneva agreements concerning foreign troops, and they remind us that they did not begin to send in any large number of supplies or men until American forces had moved into the tens of thousands.


    We did the same thing in Iran with the CIA in 1953.

    ReplyDelete
  7. This is the message of the great Buddhist leaders of Vietnam. Recently one of them wrote these words:

    "Each day the war goes on the hatred increases in the heart of the Vietnamese and in the hearts of those of humanitarian instinct. The Americans are forcing even their friends into becoming their enemies. It is curious that the Americans, who calculate so carefully on the possibilities of military victory, do not realize that in the process they are incurring deep psychological and political defeat. The image of America will never again be the image of revolution, freedom and democracy, but the image of violence and militarism."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well yes, but after the war was over there were those 're-education camps' and the boat people, and in Cambodia the extermination of millions.

      Delete
    2. We caused the same instability that is now happening in Iraq. Al Qaeda is the new Khmer Rouge. Did you watch the video of the three truck drivers pulled over? Al Qaeda, our new ally, is doing that to Iraq. We hanged the one guy who kept al Qaeda out of Iraq.

      Had we minded our own business in Iran in 1953 there never would have been an Ayatollah.

      Delete
    3. The USSR and Chi-Coms did not exist back then, you idiot.

      Delete
    4. (anon is the idiot, to clarify)

      Delete
  8. Sounds like our quest to goad Iran into a war so that we can bomb her nuclear program is not original. Check this out:

    ...If we continue, there will be no doubt in my mind and in the mind of the world that we have no honorable intentions in Vietnam. It will become clear that our minimal expectation is to occupy it as an American colony and men will not refrain from thinking that our maximum hope is to goad China into a war so that we may bomb her nuclear installations. If we do not stop our war against the people of Vietnam immediately the world will be left with no other alternative than to see this as some horribly clumsy and deadly game we have decided to play. ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And on that note I'm going back to Fox so as not to get into a big to-do.

      Delete
  9. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    This article is about the American federal holiday. For Martin Luther King, Jr.'s actual birthday, see January 15.
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
    Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1964
    Official name Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
    Also called MLK Day
    Observed by United States
    Type National
    Date Third Monday in January
    2013 date January 21
    2014 date January 20
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is an American federal holiday marking the birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around the time of King's birthday, January 15. The floating holiday is similar to holidays set under the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, though the act predated the establishment of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day by 15 years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I remain confused:

      Please enlighten my sorry ass.

      Delete
    2. "I Have a Dream" speech day, I guess.

      Do we have 2 Washington's Days too?

      Delete
    3. No this is his speech against US involvement in Viet Nam.You really should listen to it. This is my second time. It is fascinating on many relevant levels.

      Delete
    4. We didn't need to be in Vietnam. We were the red coats in that one. But I was eight years old and still watching the Bugaloos when it was over.

      Delete
    5. How did they get past this?

      Why you won’t see or hear the ‘I have a dream’ speech

      By Josh Schiller, Published: August 27

      Josh Schiller is an associate in the New York offices of Boies Schiller & Flexner who has represented plaintiffs and defendants in copyright infringement lawsuits.

      Fifty years ago this week, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I have a dream” speech. But in coverage of events celebrating its anniversary, the entirety of King’s address will rarely be reprinted, if at all, nor will viewers see footage of his speech delivered in full.

      A few months after King delivered the speech, he sent a copy of the address to the U.S. Copyright office and listed the remarks as a “work not reproduced for sale.” In legal terms, this is also known as an unpublished work. He subsequently sued to enjoin two publishers from distributing phonographic reproductions of the address. One of the defendants, 20th Century Fox, had filmed and broadcast all of the speeches at the March on Washington at the request of the march’s organizers. From that material, it had reproduced the phonographs that were the subject of the injunction. But a court ruled that, although King had addressed a large public audience in an unrestricted public forum, reproduction without authorization was an infringement of King’s copyright. Performance of the speech, like the performance of a song or play in a public space, did not create a general waiver of King’s right to limit reproduction under the 1909 Copyright Act.

      Since 1963, King and, posthumously, his estate have strictly enforced control over use of that speech and King’s likeness. A few years ago, the estate received more than $700,000from the nonprofit foundation that created and built the monument to King on the Mall in order to use his words and image. The only legal way to reproduce King’s work — at least until it enters the public domain in 2038 — is to pay for a licensing fee, rates for which vary. (Individuals visiting the King Center can buy a recording of the “I have a dream” speech for $20. Licenses for media outlets run into the thousands.)

      Although it has been the subject of at least two lawsuits — the King estate sued CBS and USA Today for their use of the speech, reaching undisclosed settlements — a court has never examined whether and under what circumstances the “I have a dream” speech may be used without authorization in what’s considered a “fair use” exception.

      Delete
    6. Some time in 1964 "The Stars and Stripes" started printing the weekly death toll with names, rank, age and hometown. At first the list was short, mostly pilots, green berets, as many accidental deaths as combat. Within three years the weekly stretched to several columns, over 500, mostly 18,19,20 year old privates, Sgt.'s and lots of 2nd Lt.'s.

      Delete
    7. By '67 a popular game in the Shit was Frag The Looey.

      Delete
  10. One year to the day after this speech, Martin Luther King was murdered.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Early morning, April 4
      Shot rings out in the Memphis sky
      Free at last, they took your life
      They could not take your pride

      In the name of love
      What more in the name of love. . .

      (I actually cry when I hear this song)

      Delete
    2. My Motor Officer had invited me to dinner at his house in Olathe, Kansas.

      When the news came on, he said:

      "He got what he deserved."

      My face musta revealed everything.

      His good Christian wife said:

      "Oh, John!"
      (or whatever his name was)

      Delete
    3. Lieutenant Gooch, is all I can remember.

      ...he was my superior, after all.

      Delete
    4. The "conversation" that followed is a total blank in my "mind."

      Delete
    5. If you remember the Sixties you weren't there.

      Delete
    6. If you weren't wasted,

      the day was.

      Delete
  11. How 'bout a simple chronology of what he said, when he died, and what and when that stuff is commemorated?

    ...for this simple mind,

    PLEASE!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All I know is that I was extremely short when he was killed.

      ...and that I was in KC when Bobby got it in LA.

      Delete
    2. I had to go to KC for three weeks to learn to program a cable tester, not on my list of recommendations for stops when we make our Civil War Tour back east one of these days. Although there was one battlefield within walking distance of DIT-MCO Corp., where I was schoolin'

      Delete
    3. Bobby was closely tracking MLK.

      ...shades of the NSA.

      Delete
    4. They had some cool sixties display in some KC Museum:

      "The Magic Theater,"

      Or some such.

      Delete
  12. The entire speech is airing on MSNBC, right now. The March on Washington speech, not the Vietnam speech.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We now know how Rufus programs his "brain"

      ...a total audience which matches Limbaugh's in NY City alone.

      MSNBC

      Delete
    2. Hollywood, Teachers, and MSM, sadly, program our young minds in MSNBC's absence.

      Delete
  13. Jeezus Christ:

    All I'm asking is a list of what he said, when he died, and when and how we are supposed to remember it.

    ...or not.

    Is that too much to ask?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I just told you that his entire, copyrighted speech was being aired on MSNBC.

      Delete
    2. MSNBC is pulling numbers lower than the Puppet Show Channel.

      Delete
    3. What does that have to do with anything?

      Delete
    4. Proves you are among the elite.

      How did you not know?

      Delete
    5. Doug, dammit, you're too damned old to stupidly lock yourself into one way of thinking.

      Delete
    6. Locked and loaded, baby!

      Is there any other way?

      Delete
  14. If only Travon were here to represent MLK.

    :-(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At least his dad is still POTUS.

      (...dad in his own mind.)

      Delete
    2. If Travon really was his son, and if Travon had fathered a child with a white lady, would that child still be "black?"

      ...like BHO?

      Delete
    3. The Locked and Loaded Klan wants to know.

      Delete
    4. Lets see - Trayvon would be, what, 75% B?

      Mom 100% W

      Trayvon Jr. then would be -- what?

      help

      He'd be 50% plus 12.5% = 62.5% W?

      I guess it depends on the culture one lives in to say whether he is white or black. Or you could simply say he was an American young man.

      But Martin Luther King was a great man. All great men have some flaws, so did he. So what?

      Trayvon Martin's son with a white mom should be judged just like anyone else, by the content of his character, not genetic inheritance.

      Delete
    5. 75% + 0% /2 = 37.5% Black

      Mostly white, but with a larger than average pecker.

      Delete
    6. Which is why Sarah had such a case of Jungle Fever.

      Delete
  15. "I just told you that his entire, copyrighted speech was being aired on MSNBC."

    ***

    So the Mess gives a payoff to the King Offspring?

    Good to know they still have money to burn.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't get it. You asked for information; I gave you information; and you spit on it. That's just wrong.

      The Boss, and Pete Seeger

      Delete
    2. I ASKED FOR A LIST OF WHAT HE DID IT AND WHEN WE ARE SUPPOSED TO OFFICIALLY PAY TRIBUTE TO WHAT HE DID OR SAID and Date of Death and when we commemorate that.

      ...birth, death, speeches, indigestion, I'm willing to proclaim I still need to learn WTF?

      IT'S NOT A SINGULARITY!

      ...jeezee louisee!

      Delete
    3. You got google on that machine, right? It's spelled, "Wikipedia."

      Delete
  16. "I've always been in the right place and time. Of course, I steered myself there."

    - Bob Hope

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've always been a day late and a dollar short, and I steered myself there too.

      Delete
  17. We didn't need to be in Vietnam but that doesn't mean we were the only bad guys there. The communists were ruthless.

    Just for starters:


    >>>>EDITORIAL: Religious freedom for Vietnam
    President Obama gets an opportunity to bear witness

    By THE WASHINGTON TIMES Thursday, July 25, 2013

    Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang (left, shown here with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in June) will meet with President Obama while suppressing dissidents, bloggers and religious leaders. (AP Photo/Mark Ralston, Pool)


    President Truong Tan Sang of Vietnam visits the White House on Thursday, and this is a providential occasion for President Obama to speak up for religious liberty.

    Religion is a complicated topic in the communist nation, where the official state religion is atheism, the evangelistic belief in nothing. Nonetheless, 45 percent of the population are believers: 16 percent are Buddhist, and 8 percent are Christian, according to the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. In Vietnam, faith is not for the faint of heart. Buddhists and Christians have been oppressed by governments, communist and non-communist alike, throughout Vietnam’s long and tortured history.

    Since the country was unified in 1975 at the point of communist bayonets at the end of the long Vietnam War, Christians have suffered most, though there are some small signs of improvement. In May, the State Department noted that while “restrictions on religious freedom remain in Vietnam, the government took a step forward by allowing large-scale worship services with more than 100,000 participants.”

    The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom is less optimistic, warning that the government continues to deploy special religious police to suppress Buddhist, Catholic, Protestant, Hoa Hao, and Cao Dai communities through “discrimination, violence and forced renunciations of their faith.” Defenders of religious freedom are often imprisoned.

    The commission cites two high-profile cases. Le Quoc Quan, a human rights activist, lawyer and blogger who protested the Vietnamese government’s use of land belonging to Catholics, has been imprisoned since Dec. 27 on dubious charges of tax evasion. He hasn’t yet had the opportunity to defend himself at trial. The commission is further concerned over the plight of Cu Huy Ha Vu, who is serving a seven-year prison term for opposing the government’s taking of land from a Catholic parish in Da Nang as well as his advocacy of human rights.

    Vietnam hasn’t ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but Hanoi says it embraces some of the freedoms outlined in the document. But talk is cheap. The Vietnamese government must demonstrate its commitment to religious freedom by making a clean break from its past if it wants to rejoin the rest of the respectable world. To begin, Vietnam must release religious prisoners and return land confiscated from religious communities.

    There’s a financial motivation to do the right thing. Vietnam is currently negotiating a free-trade agreement with the European Union, and it wants the United States to sign the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a regional free-trade treaty that would affect the $25 billion in goods bought from and sold to Vietnam each year.

    The price of such benefits must be an internal political reform that goes beyond mere talk. Mr. Obama relishes his reputation for eloquence and persuasion. This is his opportunity to encourage Mr. Sang and his country to embrace the universal right to faith.<<<<

    Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jul/25/religious-freedom-for-vietnam/#ixzz2dKTPnfSk
    Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

    I could go into the oppression and execution of anyone with property, like Deuce, for instance, but it makes me sick.

    We got ourselves into a tough situation, but it doesn't mean our ideals were wrong though some of the methods surely were wrong.

    Don't turn to a Buddhist monk for political advice or political good sense. Other than that they are extremely interesting people.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. After all the Buddhists got pushed out of India because they would not fight back, like the Hindus, the Buddhists ending up far to the east and up in the hills, for the most part, while the Hindus saved their way of life and their country, for the most part.

      Delete
    2. If India had been big majority Buddhist it would be muslim now.

      Delete
  18. Good find on the Vietnam Speech, Deuce.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The worst group of all 'won' in Vietnam. The communists rode a wave of nationalism that started when the French wandered in there, rode it to victory, with a great deal of outside help. I don't know if it can be called a tragedy or not but it certainly is a sad, sad tale.

      Delete
    2. I disagree. The group that won was the group that was supported by the vast majority of the Vietnamese people - North, and South.

      Delete
    3. Both you and Deuce, if you had been property owning Vietnamese, as you are property owning Americans, would most likely have been dead long ago in Vietnam, as would I, rat, WiO.....this discussion has been mostly drivel today.

      g'nite!

      Delete
    4. While you were wasting your father's money stinking up some cow college, somewhere, I was busy drinking beer with the Vietnamese guys, and diddling their girlfriends. I got to know them pretty well. They, to a man, hated the S. Vietnamese government, and loved "Uncle Ho."

      You had a lot of bullshit pounded up your ass;

      I found out the truth the "kinda hard, but a hell of a lot of fun, sometimes" way.

      What never seems to get written about is, the Vietnamese were pretty damned nice people. They were friendly, and were pretty much wired to enjoy life. If they liked you, they would tell you over the 2nd or 3rd ba mui ba (they Were kinda lightweights in the beer-drinking dept) the truth as they saw it - and it would, invariably, be something along the lines of "you guys are pretty good guys, but you don't have a chance in hell of beating Uncle Ho - you want to go to the boom-boom house?"

      Delete
  19. As an anti-dote to Quirk, who seems of the opinion that the MB has already won Egypt -

    August 28, 2013
    The 'Strong Horse' Falters
    By Abraham Katsman

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/08/the_strong_horse_falters.html#ixzz2dKjAlWIZ


    >>>>But, like many revolutionaries before them, the Muslim Brotherhood failed to govern any better than its predecessors. In fact, violence, poverty, persecution, repression, and economic decline marked their year in power. If this dystopia was a taste of the coming caliphate, many wanted no further part in it. Thus, the army takeover has enjoyed popular support even among many who voted the Brotherhood into power.

    That failure is cataclysmic for a movement which feeds off its own success. Brotherhood forces may be as fierce as ever, but they are, evidently, not invincible. Nor is their ultimate victory any longer inevitable. That shattered sense of invincibility and inevitability poses a major problem for continued Islamist growth and popular support. The invincible strong horse just broke a leg.

    Not coincidentally, challenges from within to Islamist power are now emerging. In Tunisia, the emboldened secular opposition has taken to the streets and forced the Islamist government to negotiate for a new government. In Gaza, where the Brotherhood grip seemed unbreakable, a Palestinian Tamarod ("Rebellion") movement has emerged, vowing to "reject death under Hamas's security club."

    The Muslim Brotherhood is hardly a spent force -- and woe to its opponents if it emerges victorious. But as this unprecedented setback undermines its claim to divinely ordained power, its stock may have peaked.

    The battles in the streets of Egypt are not about principles of liberal democracy. They are not about which autocratic government will govern more efficiently.

    They are about the Muslim Brotherhood fighting for its life. Having won Egypt before, it cannot now afford to lose. If the Muslim Brotherhood is defeated in Egypt, Islamism will be shaken everywhere.
    For triumphalist Islamists, defeat is religiously unthinkable. The strongest horse isn't supposed to retreat from its forward march.<<<<

    ReplyDelete
  20. A couple go for a meal at a Chinese restaurant and order the
    'Chicken Surprise'

    The waiter brings the meal, served in a lidded cast iron pot.

    Just as the wife is about to serve herself, the lid of the pot rises
    slightly and she briefly sees two beady little eyes looking around
    before the lid slams back down.

    'Good grief, did you see that?' she asks her husband. He hasn't, so
    she asks him to look in the pot. He reaches for it and again the lid
    rises, and he sees two little eyes looking around before it slams
    down.

    Rather perturbed, he calls the waiter over, explains what is
    happening, and demands an explanation

    'Please sir,' says the waiter, 'what you order?'

    The husband replies, 'Chicken Surprise.'


    'Ah! So sorry,' says the waiter, 'I bring you Peeking Duck'.

    ReplyDelete
  21. August 29, 2013
    Is Iran the Real Target?
    Fay Voshell

    The chemical warfare perpetrated on innocent civilians in Syria by the Assad regime has produced at least two obvious effects.

    First, the attacks have instigated horrified outrage on the part of all civilized nations. There is something different about chemical weapons, even though rifles and missiles kill people just as surely as gassing does. There is something about watching soldiers, children, and infants gasping and struggling for air that reaches the most hardened hearts -- a special horror well captured in Wilfred Owen's WWI poem, "Dulce et Decorum Est." That unique horror is why all civilized nations have banned the use of chemical weapons.

    Second, and more importantly, the attacks have proved Syria has in fact used chemical weapons against its own citizens, thus providing the "red line"" the Obama administration needed for intervention in Syria.

    In response, the administration has moved military equipment into place near Syria in preparation for a retaliatory strike against Assad's regime. According to the Wall Street Journal, "Defense officials have said the U.S. is considering cruise-missile strikes from navy ships in the Mediterranean." In the meantime, according to the same WSJ piece, there appears to be a massive attack of self-preservation going on among the nations surrounding Syria.

    But while the world is focusing on Syria and the horrors unfolding there; while the administration is considering retaliation against Syria's regime, Syria may not be the main target of the massive military buildup and the scramble for sympathetic alliances. The real target may be Iran and the country's nuclear bomb sites.

    For years, Israel and the U.S. have warned about the danger of Iran having the bomb. Iran's leaders have long wanted to match nuclear weaponry with their gotterdammerung ideology. Israeli and American intelligence sources may have discovered a nuclear "red line" is about to be crossed.
    The consequence of such a discovery could mean "diplomacy" is finally ditched and a concerted and focused attack on Iran begins, with Syria providing the cover allowing the attack.

    The U.S. and Israel, supported by other allies, may have decided to attack now before the nuclear "red line" is crossed and nations see that line written in blood; before a nuclear holocaust makes Syria's chemical warfare seem relatively insignificant. We do live in dangerous times.

    Fay Voshell may be reached at fvoshell@yahoo.com


    ReplyDelete
  22. Anybody read about the wolf attack on a young male camper in Minnesota? Barely escaped. Big gash in the head of the young fellow. Wolf was shot later. If they shot the right wolf. Checking the wolf for rabies, giving the young man rabies shots. Wolf had a mal-formed jaw which may have somehow contributed to the incident.

    ReplyDelete
  23. What is Celibacy?

    Celibacy can be a choice in life,
    Or a condition imposed by circumstances.

    While attending a Marriage Weekend,
    My wife and I listened to the instructor declare,
    'It is essential that husbands and wives know the
    Things that are important to each other.."
    He then addressed the men,
    'Can you name and describe your wife's favourite flower?'

    I leaned over, touched my wife's hand gently, And whispered,
    'Self-raising, isn't it?'
    And thus began my life of celibacy..........

    ReplyDelete
  24. On this day in 2005, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin ordered people to evacuate the city prior to Hurricane Katrina.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Legislators Push for Vote Before Strike
    By ASHLEY PARKER

    Published: August 28, 2013


    “We strongly urge you to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering the use of U.S. military force in Syria,” read the letter, signed by 98 Republicans and 18 Democrats. “Engaging our military in Syria when no direct threat to the United States exists and without prior Congressional authorization would violate the separation of powers that is clearly delineated in the Constitution.”

    Speaker John A. Boehner weighed in as well, sending Mr. Obama a letter that stopped short of demanding a Congressional vote while calling on the president to provide a legal justification for force. Mr. Boehner’s letter also asked Mr. Obama to answer more than a dozen questions about potential military plans in Syria.

    On Thursday, according to a Senate aide, officials from the White House and the State and Defense Departments are set to hold a telephone briefing on the situation in Syria with Congressional leaders in both parties and top members of the national security committees.

    The letters come as the White House considers military action intended to, in the words of administration officials, “deter and degrade” the ability of the government of the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, to launch chemical weapons.

    Though Congress is not expected to reconvene until Sept. 9, the letter said that members were willing to return early to take up the question of using force in Syria. “We stand ready to come back into session, consider the facts before us, and share the burden of decisions made regarding U.S. involvement in the quickly escalating Syrian conflict,” read the letter, which was circulated by Representative Scott Rigell, Republican of Virginia.

    Mr. Rigell, in an interview, said he was motivated to push for the vote because of Mr. Obama’s decision in 2011 to authorize airstrikes in Libya without Congressional permission — a decision that, at the time, also led to bipartisan concern about the role of Congress in approving military intervention. “There really is bad precedent in recent American history in the expansion of the executive branch’s interpretation of the authority the president has, and I believe his conduct in Libya is instructive to us here,” Mr. Rigell said. “I’m deeply troubled by this. I’m hoping the president will see the wisdom, and really the necessity, to follow the clear guidance provided in our Constitution.”

    The ]question of whether the administration needs Congressional approval before using military force in Syria has bridged party lines, with Democrats and Republicans urging the White House to consult with Congress, at the very least.
    {...}

    ReplyDelete


  26. {...}

    On Monday, Senator Tim Kaine, Democrat of Virginia and chairman of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South and Central Asian Affairs, called the use of chemical weapons in Syria “despicable,” but said in a statement that any military action should first go through Congress.

    “I was pleased to hear Secretary Kerry say that the administration is consulting with Congress as response options — including potential military options — are being considered,” Mr. Kaine said, referring to Secretary of State John Kerry. “Absent an imminent threat to United States national security, the U.S. should not be engaged in military action without Congressional approval.”

    A few Republican lawmakers have called for an immediate response to the attack on Aug. 21; in a Sunday statement, Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and John McCain of Arizona called for “decisive actions.”

    Far more legislators have sought Congressional input. In a statement on Wednesday, Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, said there should be “an open debate in Congress” over United States intervention in Syria — and that final approval must go through the House and the Senate.

    “The Constitution grants the power to declare war to Congress, not the president,” he said.

    So far, White House officials have said only that they would consult with Congress before taking action — but have declined to say if they would seek Congressional authorization.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Momentum is sipping away from the Neocons. It must be killing them to be so close to completing their wet dream of having the US lead a military campaign against Iran and sense it to be faltering.

    Sit tight bastards, you may yet get your wish but maybe not.

    ReplyDelete
  28. If the Brits gets the Uck out of FUKUS, it is less than 50/50.

    Obama realizes he got himself out on a ledge. I could see it in his eyes during that interview. Must have got some bad polling numbers.

    The NY Times being hacked off helped.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zero % chance on Iran. IMHO.

      Syria - he'll look like a total fool if he doesn't at this point, having sent the ships over there and such. Posturing around. Making speeches. Leaking strike plans. Who would ever believe a word he say again? Most don't believe a word he says now.

      90% chance on Syria.

      Delete
    2. Syria is the new Sequestration.

      Delete
  29. Wolf Attack!!

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/08/27/16-year-old-survives-first-ever-documented-serious-wolf-attack-in-minnesota/

    (Wolves are desperately needed in Detroit to get those 50,000 wild dogs under control. Many of which are pit bulls my wife says. Wouldn't take the wolves long. They hate dogs. Then Quirk would have his wonderful state of nature at its finest right there in his back yard.)

    .....

    There's a very lengthy list of Republicans/'Neo-Cons' lining up against getting involved in Syria.

    Let's remember it's a 'Democratic' President, and Vice-President, too, that are doing the beating of the war drums.

    Where is Hillary and Billary on all this anyway?

    Sean Hannity is entirely against it. Michele Malkin thinks it's folly. So does that long haired blond Catholic girl, dang, what is her name, that you see on Fox. She wrote the book 'Mugged' I think. Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch, who has done so much to bring to light the insanity of islam, is against it. A long, long list......

    It would be really really surprising if Obama attacked Iran. I'd be shocked, myself. Don't worry so much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Even David Horowitz is against Syria, I believe.

      Isn't he the Neo-Cons Neo-Con?

      Delete
  30. Sam:

    I fed my Duck some Acid.

    Now I got Peaking Duck.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rufus awakes each day with visions of Peak Oil.

      No drugs required.

      Delete
    2. What we really have is Peak Rufus.

      Delete
  31. Inside Doug's skull:

    Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah... etc.

    I may have to give up taking showers, 'cause then the blahs become a veritable verbal shitstorm.

    If only I'd never learned English.

    ReplyDelete
  32. For SAM

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/the-top-10-cities-in-the-world-8788218.html?action=gallery&ino=1

    ReplyDelete
  33. Kim Jong-un's ex-lover 'executed by firing squad'

    Kim Jong-un's ex-girlfriend was among a dozen well-known North Korean performers who were executed by firing squad nine days ago, according to South Korean reports.

    Hyon Song-wol, a singer and rumoured to be a former lover of the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un
    By Julian Ryall, Tokyo10:09AM BST 29 Aug 2013

    Hyon Song-wol, a singer, rumoured to be a former lover of the North Korean leader, is said to have been arrested on Aug 17 with 11 others for violating laws against pornography.

    Hyon Song-wol starred in the video for her 2005 hit 'A Girl In The Saddle Of A Steed'

    The reports in South Korea's Chosun Ilbo newspaper indicate that Hyon, a singer with the Unhasu Orchestra, was among those arrested on August 17 for violating domestic laws on pornography.

    All 12 were machine-gunned three days later, with other members of North Korea's most famous pop groups and their immediate families forced to watch. The onlookers were then sent to prison camps, victims of the regime's assumption of guilt by association, the reports stated.

    “They were executed with machine guns while the key members of the Unhasu Orchestra, Wangjaesan Light Band and Moranbong Band as well as the families of the victims looked on,” said a Chinese source reported in the newspaper.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/northkorea/10272953/Kim-Jong-uns-ex-lover-executed-by-firing-squad.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She done got blasted out of the saddle, that's for sure.

      Delete
    2. That'll teach future girlfriends what happens if they nag.

      Delete
    3. Why didn't they force them bands to play along with the music of the machine gun?

      Delete
  34. There's hope for Ash after all -

    'Human brain' grown in lab...drudge

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-23863544

    ReplyDelete
  35. Fresno Bee:

    Top ten cities in the Universe:

    Stockton, CA

    Modesto, CA

    San Jose, CA

    Santa Rosa, CA

    Los Angeles, CA

    Oakland, CA

    San Francisco, CA

    Riverside,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hell, with Photoshop work like that, Fresno could outgleam San Francisco.

      Delete
    2. Oops, left out Reno Nevada, and Las Vegas.

      Delete
    3. Reno sucks, so does Las Vegas.

      I have heard from others though that the Australian cities are darn nice.

      Delete
  36. Top ten what, Doug? Candidates for municipal bankruptcy?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Naw, raw beauty by an unbiased California paper.

      8 out of 10 of those MoFos were England's offshoots.

      Where were Seattle, San Fran, etc?

      Delete
  37. UW scientists connect two brains via the Internet

    By next year the technology will be such I'll be able to get Bobbo to log on as Mr. Name rather than Mr. Who.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If our brains were connected Miss T we'd either end up killing one another or falling in love.

      We couldn't possibly be 'just friends'.

      :)

      Delete
    2. Signed,

      Peckerwood

      Delete
  38. Hey computer Genius and Linux Jihadi !

    The Times attack was on their DNS servers.

    Answer me this:

    What the Hell is wrong with my Verizon Account?

    Whenever I download anything from ANY site, the first download takes forever to start.
    Subsequent downloads behave normally, little delay.

    THIS HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR OVER A YEAR, and the delay affects everything, not just downloads, what the Hell is going on?

    Thanks,

    Your DNS Slave.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies

    Q

    TeresitaTue Aug 27, 10:04:00 PM EDT
    Sometimes the DNS lookup to my own website drops me on the GoDaddy signup page, and I have to use the raw IP. In your case, Doug, what are you running, XP? I betcha if I took a look under the hood it would look like the underside of a piece of plywood you left flat in the yard for a year. Potato bugs and shit.

    ---

    Vista.

    How would the bugs and shit explain why subsequent downloads from the same site start quickly?

    ReplyDelete
  39. There is no bobbo, only a boobie that cannot sign on to blogger.

    No mental capability to learn let alone retain any new knowlwdge

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That must be an insult coming from a self confessed gun toting, pot head like you....

      Delete
    2. It was such a deep thoughtful original bon mot insult WiO I simply can't tell you how it hurt.

      I will say it's getting a little old though. You'd think after months he'd think of something new.

      Daughter was supposed to have it fixed yesterday but she went off to see friends instead.

      It's not the password it's something else. I'm running the wrong something or something.

      And today I got a business meeting.

      Maybe I'll just keep it the way it is.

      After all, rat doesn't get much delight out of life, and seems to enjoy the opportunity, so, compassion being a virtue, usually, maybe I'll just keep it for this dear sake.

      Delete
    3. Another problem for me is I've been forbidden by my daughter to touch certain keys, many keys in fact. This may be a contributing factor in my trouble here.

      Delete
    4. It's hard for a blowhard like rat to come up with an original idea.

      Israeli/Jewish abortion, lester crown, city/state, eat chocolate all the same tripe all the time.

      Delete
    5. The old ideas work just fine, fellas.

      No need for anoni to be anything but a boobie.
      If he could sign on, he'd not need a skirt to get it done.

      As for our in-house Israeli, quot, he still is attempting to prove Israel's equivelence with anything 'Westen'

      No, the old themes have worked so far, I'm not bored with 'em yet.

      Delete
    6. We have no doubt you are not bored with your worn out tin hat ideas.

      Too much dope, too much murder you have done to have a normal mind or life.

      But not to worry, someday when you are sitting in your jail cell for the crimes against humanity that you have admitted too, you will have time to think of new ideas...

      Delete
    7. Think of the reality Rat...

      THOUSANDS of folks that have read this blog think you are nothing but a cold hearted, pot smoking killer...

      Perception is reality.

      You are what you are...

      A criminal on the run, afraid of the TSA.

      Delete
  40. An example, you type http://www.cleanposts.com/selah/mercurial.mp3 it goes out to a DNS lookup service, which returns 75.147.177.4, which is the actual IPv4 location of the hard drive of my pal in Renton who maintains my website. Download my next song http://www.cleanposts.com/selah/2%20-%20Far%20Country.mp3 and it's using those raw numbers, so it's faster. No mystique, no conspiracy.

    ReplyDelete
  41. But two years ago, the first download didn't take forever:

    What's changed?

    ReplyDelete
  42. Since I'm bitching and moaning, Deuce, another thing:

    Sometimes these pages take forever to finish loading while waiting for "Sitemeter" to respond.

    ReplyDelete
  43. b27sitemeter just delayed things by 10 seconds!

    The outrage!

    ReplyDelete
  44. Who is Sitemeter?

    He a webmaster or something?

    He never bothers me, whoever he is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A NSA watchman of some kind?

      Delete
    2. It tells Deuce what's happening to/with his blog:

      How much traffic, etc.

      Go to sitemeter.com

      Does it ever take awhile to load for you too?

      Delete
    3. Oh yeah, they have a disgusting ad that I can't seem to turn off.

      I really want to hear some young punk playing "music."

      Not

      Delete
    4. Sometimes it takes me awhile to get loaded.

      I got to go....later

      Delete
  45. "In mid-July, as whispers started to circulate around the fast-food chain about the founder’s health, Subway announced that DeLuca, who started the chain in 1965 to earn money for college, was battling leukemia.

    DeLuca’s condition hasn’t slowed expansion yet — subway has opened nearly 1,800 locations this year.

    In February, DeLuca said he hoped to reached 50,000 stores in four years.

    Rival McDonald’s is the No. 2 fast food chain with about 35,000 locations."

    ---

    I did not know that:

    McDonald's must have more traffic/revenue, right?

    ReplyDelete
  46. Another Neo-Con who doesn't seem to think Obama knows what he is doing with regard to Syria -

    Obama needs to justify Syria action, says … Donald Rumsfeld!

    POSTED AT 9:21 AM ON AUGUST 29, 2013 BY ED MORRISSEY


    The emphasis on Donald Rumsfeld’s name in the headline is for our friends on the Left, whose heads must be exploding right now. For eight years, they screeched about the warmongers of the previous administration, with Rumsfeld the warmongeriest of all the warmongers. Neil Cavuto asked the former Secretary of Defense whether action in Syria was warranted at this time, and Rumsfeld told him … no one knows, because Barack Obama hasn’t bothered to make a case as to why intervention serves our security interests:



    Former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld says the Obama administration has not yet justified an attack on Syria.

    “There really hasn’t been any indication from the administration as to what our national interest is with respect to this particular situation,” Rumsfeld told Fox News’ Neil Cavuto on Wednesday.

    “If you think of what’s really important in that region, it’s two things,” he added. “It’s Iran’s nuclear program and the relationship between Iran and Syria, the Assad regime, with respect to funding terrorists that go around killing innocent men, women and children including Americans.”

    Critics of the Bush administration’s war in Iraq may scoff, but George W. Bush scrupulously made the case for military intervention in Iraq. The Bush White House produced a detailed, sixteen-point justification outlining American interests in going to war with Saddam Hussein (of which WMD was a small subset), including the grotesque human-rights violations of the Saddam regime. Bush went to Congress and received authorization to use military force. He then went to the UN and at least made the case for intervention — based largely on Saddam’s refusal to abide by the 1991 cease-fire and seventeen subsequent UN Security Council resolutions.

    In contrast, Obama is barely talking with Congressional leadership about this military strike, and the only justification he’s offered for action to the American people is that Assad may feel emboldened to use chemical weapons against the US. That’s a rather laughable assertion, as Assad has no ability to reach the US with his artillery shells, and he’s got much more pressing fights at home.

    Rumsfeld is also “mystified” by the chatter coming out of the White House about timetables and proposals for the extent of the action. “I can’t imagine what they’re thinking,” Rumself tells Cavuto.

    The LA Times has a glimpse into that, actually (via Twitchy):

    One U.S. official who has been briefed on the options on Syria said he believed the White House would seek a level of intensity “just muscular enough not to get mocked” but not so devastating that it would prompt a response from Syrian allies Iran and Russia.

    “They are looking at what is just enough to mean something, just enough to be more than symbolic,” he said.

    Jeffrey Goldberg has an answer to that strategy:

    There’s nothing like acting out of an acute fear of mockery to get you mocked, I suppose. Remember“leading from behind”? This quote ranks up there in the did-someone-actually-say-that category. …

    If this is indeed the goal of the Obama administration — to look tough without being tough, to avoid threatening the existence of Bashar al-Assad’s regime, and to avoid angering Iran and Russia — then, really, let’s not bother with this attack at all. For other reasons, I’m opposed to this sort of attack on Syria — please see yesterday’s post on the subject. But if the goal is merely to save face in light of President Barack Obama’s (morally and politically appropriate) drawing of a chemical-weapons red line, then this forthcoming attack is a very, very bad idea.

    That may be why Obama isn’t providing a justification for it.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Really Donald Rumsfeld

    ReplyDelete
  48. as Chinese finger trap continues to tighten:

    "What’s really at stake in Syria is U.S. credibility

    MICHAEL BELL


    Britain is scheduled to submit a resolution to the United Nations Security Council that would authorize military action, under Chapter 7 of the Charter, formally aimed at protecting civilians in Syria, a euphemism for attacks on the military assets of the Assad regime. It is unlikely such a text will pass given an almost certain Russian veto. The United States and its allies are nevertheless virtually sure to act despite this seeming break with international law, as former U.S. president Bill Clinton did respecting Kosovo in 1999.

    To do otherwise would have seriously deleterious effects. Failure to take action would be seen by all: The Assad regime, the Syrian opposition, regional jihadists, both U.S. friends and enemies in the region and on a broader scale with Moscow, as a display of American impotence. By backing off now, Washington’s global power and influence would be undermined, particularly with President Barack Obama having promised the most serious of consequences when the Syrians used chemical weapons the first time this past March and then offering, what was seen by all, as a very weak response.

    Mr. Obama cannot sustain a second failure of nerve, real or perceived. Neither the international community nor his own domestic constituency will accept it, despite war weariness and a suspicion that intervention in the Syrian imbroglio carries the risk of unforeseen consequences possibly drawing the U.S. into another dubious venture in the quicksand of the greater Middle East, as with the tragedies of Iraq and Afghanistan. Nor does the Administration want perceived tolerance of Damascus’ actions to erode the universal ban on chemical weapons, in place since the end of the First World War and observed almost without exception since then.

    The U.S. is trapped in a conundrum. Despite being loath to engage in another Iraq or Afghanistan, Washington’s global credibility and influence are at stake.

    Even the most considered options, open to the President, carry risks. Moscow can be expected to do everything in its power to undermine any Western effort, not only using its Security Council veto but deepening its ties with Iran, as well as beefing up its traditional great power confrontation with Washington worldwide. Mr. Putin will not easily abandon his only remaining ally in the Levant.

    Rather than discourage Tehran’s nuclearization efforts, which by all evidence proceeds apace, a U.S. attack on its ally Syria could reinforce Iranian determination to reinforce the nuclear project. Iranian preoccupation with U.S. intent, paranoid or not, remains a guiding principle.

    The demise of Bashar al-Assad could well create a prime operational base for Sunni jihadists, advancing their aim of seizing power in Syria better to enable them to destabilize the region as a whole – their declared objective. Neither Mr. Obama nor British Prime Minister David Cameron, who is particularly robust, believes that tolerable given the chaos created by the Arab uprisings.

    The Israelis too are preoccupied with Syria’s turmoil, given the instability on their borders and the heightened risk of Zionist-focused terrorism, not only on their own turf but worldwide. They are making a maximal effort to ensure a tough line. The Israeli government is rock solid in its concern that Washington backing down would encourage Tehran to believe American resolve on nuclear issues would prove equally ephemeral.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Multi-fold options are available to the U.S. and its allies. Ground forces could be sent in to take possession of chemical weapons sites and utterly destroy them. But this would lead to a ground war with allies caught between the forces of the regime, the moderate opposition and increasingly powerful jihadists. It will not happen.

      A second possibility would be the establishment of no-fly zones, considered in the past, although this would do nothing respecting chemical weapons. It would require ongoing activity in Syrian airspace beyond the limits of such zones and tend to suck the allies into an all-encompassing commitment. Such a prospect seems unlikely.

      A third option is to target weapons delivery systems using aircraft and ballistic missiles by cratering Syrian military airfields, destroying parked aircraft, fuel depots and storage facilities. Some experts argue this would inevitably result in mission creep, while strengthening jihadists through weakening Mr. Assad. It would likely require allied air action over Syria with non-stealth aircraft. Given the Syrians still posses considerable military assets this, even if unlikely, could result in shoot downs, creating the nightmare scenario of allied prisoners cum hostages.

      A fourth alternative, most probable because it is the least risk fraught, is an attack on Syrian strategic facilities such as the Defense Ministry and other military headquarters. Costs would be manageable, targets would be fewer, and aircraft would likely not be required. If they were, bombers with air-launched missiles could be deployed beyond the range of Syrian air defenses. It appears Mr. Assad may consider such a step probable as it is rumored that command and control facilities are being relocated by the regime into urban areas, adjoining schools and hospitals.

      An attack on strategic installations can be criticized as ineffective because it would be largely symbolic. While this may not appeal to military planners, the power of imagery should never be discounted. The Middle East is replete with examples."

      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/world-insider/whats-really-at-stake-in-syria-is-us-credibility/article14018944/#dashboard/follows/

      Delete
  49. Evil, evil unions:

    "Fast-food workers staged strikes at McDonald’s and Burger Kings and demonstrated at other stores in sixty U.S. cities on Thursday in their latest action in a nearly year-long campaign to raise wages in the service sector.

    The strikes spread quickly across the country and have shut down restaurants in New York, Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Raleigh and Seattle, according to organizers.

    ...

    The fast-food workers want to form unions in the virtually union-free sector without employer retaliation and bargain for higher wages.

    They are demanding pay of $15 (U.S.) an hour, up from $7.25, which is the current federal minimum wage.

    Martin Rafanan, a community organizer in St. Louis, said local employees of McDonald’s and Wendy’s can’t make it on the salaries.

    “If you’re paying $7.35 an hour and employing someone for 20, 25 hours a week, which is the average here, they’re bringing home about $10,000 a year. You can’t survive on that.” Rafanan said. Missouri’s minimum wage is $7.35 an hour.

    “Unless we can figure out how to make highly profitable companies pay a fair wage to their workers, we’re just going to watch them pull all the blood, sweat, tears and money out of our communities.”

    McDonald’s profits totaled $5.47-billion in 2012.
    ..."

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/international-business/us-business/us-fast-food-workers-plan-nationwide-strikes-over-wages/article14018751/#dashboard/follows/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. McD's 35,000 stores and $5.47 billion

      Delete
    2. Each location averages $156,000 in the bottom line.

      Figure an averaage of thirty employees per store

      Mostly part~timers. A couple managers and shifter leaders on full time.

      Hard to double the payroll and maintain prices, sales and same store profitability.

      Delete
    3. I'm guessing a 5% increase in prices, Rat. That "Dollar Deal" will have to be "A Dollar and a Nickel," I guess.

      I think we can afford it. :)

      Delete
    4. Of course, I'm thinking Nine or Ten Dollars; not Fifteen. I doubt very seriously that that could happen.

      Delete
    5. yep! Something has to give - prices maybe? or simply keep the suckers working cheap - they should be happy to be employed at all.

      Delete
    6. Hourly payroll has to be more than 5% of sales, today.

      Betcha it is closer to 16%

      Delete
    7. As I said, I'm not figuring their going to go all whole-hog monty to $15.00 ( a double.)

      Also, those stores do pull some pretty large numbers (but, there's no way I care enough, at this stage, to go trying to find the actual gross/labor cost ratios.)

      :)

      Delete
  50. I wouldn't bet a nickel either way, but it seems like the "war fever" is subsiding just a bit.

    ReplyDelete
  51. A couple of cruise missiles

    Kill a convoy or two.

    Their Defense Ministry building.

    Call it a day.


    Doubt Obama is that dumb, though.
    Do not see how it advances the interests of General Dynamics

    Obama will dither the opportunity.

    Create more noise

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's what I would do. Stall the ball, and hope to be saved by the Brits, French, or Republicans.

      Delete
    2. or, sumbody.

      Buehler?

      Buehler??

      Delete
    3. If one bluffs one must be prepared for the bluff to be called. Was the 'chemical red line' a bluff? I'm guessing America will need be seen to be in the lead on this attack to escape being caught in a bluff. Are the threats re. Iran's nuclear weaponry a bluff?

      Talking tough can bite you in the ass.

      Delete
    4. Ah, there are ways to "walk it back."

      e.g. chemical weapons were used, but we're not sure they were "ordered" by the regime, etc.

      Delete
    5. Hard to walk it back given recent POTUS statements of culpability in this matter. Something will be done or America becomes a paper tiger. That something, likely, will be for show with as minimal risks as possible (here's to hoping anyway).

      Delete
    6. Maybe, just maybe, the UN inspectors will give him the cover he needs - but I doubt it. Would be nice if they came up with 'ah, it was just a virus - natural causes dontcha know?' 'They got gassed but we don't who by' won't be enough cover.

      Delete
    7. When it comes to nuclear proliferation, ash, the US has never been less than a paper tiger. Going back to Reagan and his empty threats to Pakistan. NorKorea has not been deterred by US threats.
      India gained an ally in GW Bush and the US by going nuclear.

      Japan and SouK are both a srewdriver twist away from joining the Nuclear Weapoms Capable Club.

      The nuclear issue with Iran is the red herring, it is an excuse, not the cause.

      Delete
  52. "What’s really at stake in Syria is U.S. credibility

    Read: Obama's credibility.

    That's an oxymoron like rap music, death benefits, Windows capable, and bad sex.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I dunno. Successive administrations have threatened various repercussions for a variety of things - i.e. Iran and nukes. When a POTUS draws a line in red the world listens. Old man Bush drew one in sand and look what happened.

      Obama is POTUS and hence his credibility is America's credibility. Sucks, but true.

      Delete
    2. Canada's Prime Minister:

      "Speaking with reporters in Toronto, Mr. Harper noted that he has been discussing the potential for a military response in Syria with Canadian allies, including U.S. President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Fran├žois Hollande.

      “Our government has been a very reluctant convert to the idea that there needs to be some Western military action regarding the Syrian situation. We have been, and remain concerned when we look at this conflict that it is overwhelmingly sectarian in nature and does not have at present any ideal or obvious outcomes,” he said.

      “With that all said, in talking to our allies, we are convinced that notwithstanding our reluctance, that the risks of the international community not acting in the face of what appears to be an escalation and likely further escalation without action in the use of chemical weapons as a weapon of warfare is an extremely dangerous precedent. This is a very big risk and we do believe, and we do support, our allies who are contemplating forceful action to deal with this. That said, at the present time, the Government of Canada has no plans, we have no plans of our own, to have a Canadian military mission.”"

      Delete
    3. .

      Hilarious.

      For a year now (at least) the crescendo has been growing amongst our 'allies' for the US to stop offering lip service to action in Syria and get involved directly and immediately. FUKUS, Turkey, Israel, the Arab League, NATO, the Commonwealth countries. Now, when Obama backs himself into a corner and appears to be getting ready to intervene they all send their well wishes and verbal support with these words:

      "Screw the UN, screw the lack of evidence, screw international law, we are behind you all the way. Way, way behind you, that is, cheering all the way."

      .

      Delete
    4. You got it Quirk! Don't you love the fact that America has donned the mantle of the worlds beat cop?

      Delete
  53. Forget peak oil. Peak driving.


    . . .average miles drivers individually rack up peaked in July 2004 at just over 900 per month, said a study by Transportation Department economists Don Pickrell and David Pace. By July of last year, that had fallen to 820 miles per month, down about 9%. . .

    . . ."The car as a fetish of masculinity is probably over for certain age groups," McGuckin said. "I don't think young men care as much about the car they drive as they use to." . . .

    The peak driving years for most people are between ages 45 and 55 when they are the height of their careers and have more money to spend, said transportation analyst Alan Pisarski, author of "Commuting in America." Now, the last of the baby boomers — the giant cohort born between 1946 and 1964 — are moving out of their peak driving years.


    Dudes are driving chick cars to and from work these days, that's it. No more stock car rallies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think there might be an unaddressed "affordability issue" at work here, also.

      Delete
  54. Bobbo: If our brains were connected Miss T we'd either end up killing one another or falling in love.

    We couldn't possibly be 'just friends'.


    That would be a swift dive into the shallow end of the gene pool.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would be double suicide by association.

      Delete
  55. Credibility is the currency of diplomacy. It prevents war when reliable.

    ReplyDelete
  56. .

    Red Lines?

    Obama needs a few of the colors removed from his crayon box.

    Unfortunately, it won't happen. Pentagon's 'Black OPs' budget increased to $56 billion. The additional 3.7 percent increase will be used for an increase in the usual stuff; false flag operation, renditions, assassinations, general mayhem, coups, prostitutes, corruption, ninja operations, safe houses, phony I.D.s, Cuban cigars, visits to Bangkok, disguises, snitches, replacement torture devices, Intelligence Committee boondoggles, pens that shoot, exploding cigars, pallets for transporting cash, new espresso machines at the Pentagon, blank cyanide capsules, new educational software like the bestselling Chaos, Confusion, and Anarchy for Dummies or Bending and Breaking the Truth: Dissembling, Misinforming, and Outright Lying for God and Country, historical records immolation, rubber stamps ('Classified', 'Top Secret', 'Pay to the Order of...', etc.), drop phones, dark sun glasses, black helicopters, etc.

    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Re: Red Lines?

      ...a few items for the list...

      "Just For Men", viagra, bobs (battery operated boyfriends, and made service

      Delete
    2. removable tattoos

      http://www.tattoofun.com/?utm_source=custom&utm_medium=adwords&utm_campaign=custom&gclid=CLOw78rPo7kCFalcMgodUDgAxQ

      TattoosRUs, once a sub of Souls, now independently owned since court ordered change of ownership.

      Best of recognizable identifying markings to fool any witness or police department.

      Delete
  57. (Reuters) - In a move marijuana advocates hailed as a historic shift, the Obama administration on Thursday began giving U.S. states wide leeway to experiment with pot legalization and started by letting Colorado and Washington carry out new laws permitting recreational use.

    Let's see how libertarian this blog really is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not only that, the IRS has decided to recognize Gay marriage regardless of the State.

      Delete
    2. Your state's SAT scores are going to crash, Miss T.

      Best carefully count your change at McDonald's from now on.

      Delete
  58. Ah, now I get it. Been told over the phone that I am not my own domain administrator, whatever that is, but rather my daughter is my domain administrator. I am not Prince over my own domain.

    ReplyDelete