“This site is dedicated to preying on peoples vanity, ignorance, or loneliness, gaining their trust and betraying them without remorse.”

Friday, January 03, 2014

In 2005, Iran only had a few centrifuges for enriching uranium, negotiators were close to reaching an agreement to freeze its nuclear program. Negotiations faltered and George W. Bush refused the deal. Today, Iran has over 19,000 centrifuges. So why should things work out now?


'Chance of a Century': International Investors Flock to Tehran

Daniel Bernbeck has learned that in Tehran there's no point getting worked up about things like the gridlock between Gholhak, his neighborhood in the northern part of the city, and downtown, where his office is located. Here he is again, stuck in traffic, with everyone honking their horns. Tehran is a murderous city, says Bernbeck, even without international sanctions and threats of attack from Israel.
Bernbeck is sitting in a gray SUV. He's a wiry, tall blond man who wears lawyer-like glasses. The only departure from the standard business look is a narrow soul patch on his chin, which suggests a certain degree of individualism. His cell phone rings. Bernbeck's Iranian secretary is on the line. She's expecting him, and the deputy German ambassador has also arrived, along with two investment bankers from London and Hong Kong. They are asking about stock tips for Iran.
"Iranian stocks for Hong Kong?" Bernbeck exclaims with a grin, and then says in his best Farsi: "The same bankers would have said a year ago: You're crazy." Then he asks the driver to hurry up, although it doesn't do any good.
Bernbeck is the head of the German-Iranian Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Tehran. He paves the way for business ties in a country where Western politicians have been trying for decades to make such relationships impossible, especially since 2006.
At the time, the Islamic Republic started to rapidly expand its nuclear program. Intelligence agencies predicted that it would be only a matter of a few years before the Iranians had a nuclear bomb. Arab Gulf states in the region felt threatened, and Israel was determined to go to war with Tehran if a political solution could not be found quickly.
For over five years now, Bernbeck, 50, has been living between these two adversarial worlds, more specifically "on the dark side of Mars, where the cannibals and Holocaust deniers live." Bernbeck says that's how Iran is portrayed in the West.
Landmark Deal in Geneva
But his world has become much brighter since Nov. 24. That was the day when the five permanent members of the UN Security Council -- plus Germany and Iran -- signed a landmark deal in Geneva aimed at turning around the situation within the next six months. According to this agreement, Iran would roll back certain elements of its nuclear program and, in exchange, the West would ease economic sanctions.
Bernbeck believes in this possibility for a peace accord. Suddenly it appears to be there, the "chance of a century" that he has been waiting for, although this opportunity could still be dashed, like in 2005.
Back then, Iran only had a few centrifuges for enriching uranium, and negotiators were close to reaching an agreement that would have frozen its nuclear program at that level. But then the negotiations faltered and US President George W. Bush refused the deal.
Today, eight years later, Iran has over 19,000 centrifuges. So why should things work out now? Perhaps because this time both sides have made concessions on the issue. The Americans have dropped their absolute demand that the Iranians abandon their entire nuclear program. At the same time, Israel's threats of war and, above all, painful international sanctions have forced the Iranians back to the negotiating table.
For the past three years, there have been virtually no bank transfers between Iran and the outside world, and revenues from oil and gas sales have plummeted. Only the Chinese are still making purchases, but instead of paying in hard currency they are delivering only bulldozers and construction machinery.
Old Revolutionaries Are Skeptical
The sanctions have paralyzed Iran's economy. But Mohammed Hossein Rafi is one of the many Iranians who simply don't believe that. In fact, he says, the sanctions have only served to make his proud country even stronger.
Rafi ranks among the country's conservatives, the hardliners, the old faithful followers of Ayatollah Khomeini. He is sitting in the Iranian Artists' Cafe, and like most former revolutionaries, he wears his beard neatly trimmed around the chin. He keeps his cashmere coat on during the interview.
During the 1970s, he campaigned against the Shah, then fought in the Iraq-Iran war, and later had a long career with an Iranian intelligence agency. Now he is supposedly working at an institute for Islamic standards, which wants to create something akin to Germany's DIN industrial standards.
Rafi says that with the international pressure Iran has risen to become a leading country in the area of science and research. It has even discovered an effective AIDS drug, which will soon be presented to the world, he contends.
These are just some of the stories that war veterans recount in Tehran. The old revolutionaries take a highly skeptical view of the negotiations with their arch-enemy, the United States. They would prefer to see the negotiators fail. And the Revolutionary Guards' network, which was founded by Ayatollah Khomeini -- and includes Rafi -- still remains one of the most powerful organizations in Iran.
Rafi says that he doesn't believe in peace or the current nuclear negotiations: "Obama wants war," he says. Rafi maintains that 50,000 volunteers have already registered as suicide bombers, to be deployed if it should come to an armed conflict. But he refuses to divulge the identity of the organization that has recruited them.
Iran's new president, Hassan Rohani -- who the West is hoping has the strength to institute reforms -- will have to incorporate people like Rafi into his new Persia. Indeed, Rohani says that there should be no more "revolutions," but rather an "evolutionary process." It might be possible to win over the war veterans if they can benefit from future business deals, Bernbeck says.
Investors Flock to Tehran
Rohani needs economic success stories. He has to sweep aside the sanctions but, more importantly, move faster than inflation, which is eating away at the already meager income earned by millions of Iranians. The monthly minimum wage is only €140 ($190).
Iranians are suffering under the embargo, and they are not just holding the Americans responsible for this. The price of gasoline has multiplied; milk and cheese now cost three times as much as they did two years ago.
But it looks like the nuclear negotiations could spark an economic upswing in Iran. Although none of the sanctions have been lifted, droves of Western business people are already flocking to Tehran. Iran has the world's fourth-largest known oil reserves, and the second-largest gas reserves. Business deals worth billions of euros can be made here.
Bernbeck has finally arrived at the underground parking garage. He takes the elevator to the seventh floor, which is the home of the German-Iranian Chamber of Industry and Commerce. He lists the names of all the countries whose business people have already been here -- "except for the Germans again."
Bernbeck tells a story that he thinks perfectly illustrates the current situation in Tehran: Not a single top European official came to President Rohani's inauguration, as agreed by the EU member states' representatives in Brussels. But the very next day the government in Rome sent a high-ranking emissary to personally congratulate the new Iranian head of state.
Now the planes from Europe are "full of Italians," Bernbeck quips, including managers from Italian energy giant Eni. France is also on the move. In a deal worth billions, the French are about to renew their licensing contract for supplying Peugeot conponents to Iranian carmaker Iran Khodro. "And the Americans are already here with ExxonMobil, Chevron Corporation and other US companies," he says, adding: "They are responsible for renovating the old oil production facilities and refinery industry, as well as exploring new oil fields. That's a huge multibillion-euro business."

Bernbeck falls silent for a moment, but on his face one can read the disbelief of a man who is not only exhausted from the traffic of this megacity, but also from the political games of the other Western nations in Tehran. In front of his office door, he swings around again and says: "This here is not a matter of good and evil, or perhaps even the nuclear deal. It's really about a great deal of money."
"Salam, khub hastid, khoshhalam," Bernbeck greets a number of board members from the chamber of commerce who have been waiting for him. He bows slightly and places his right hand over his heart. Bernbeck knows Iran. As the oldest son of a Protestant priest, he grew up in Tehran in the 1970s. He experienced the oil boom under Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi. A few years later, he asked the Shah of Iran's daughter Farahnas for a dance after a day of skiing at a fancy resort in the mountains north of Tehran.
Then came the revolution in 1979, and the fledgling Islamic Republic made many of his childhood friends into Revolutionary Guards, who wore uniforms and sped through the streets in all-terrain vehicles. During the Iraq-Iran war in 1981, when blackouts were ordered throughout the city and the power was turned off, Bernbeck sat in the basement of the parsonage in the district of Gholhak, and played rummy together with his parents and siblings.
Today he speaks Farsi almost as well as he speaks German, and he hears the difference between t'aarof and the truth. T'aarof is a term that covers a broad range of polite etiquette that doesn't necessarily have to reflect reality. Westerners are often driven to despair by t'aarof, because they think they understand the content of the message.
When Bernbeck returned to Iran 26 years after spending his formative years there, he also had to deal with culture shock. The chamber of commerce was mired in the corrupt undertow of an Iranian mafia-like network before he took charge. Now Bernbeck is endeavoring to establish his notions of "transparency and truthfulness." Of course, it's not always easy.
Only recently one of his employees slipped him another one of those ubiquitous envelopes. It contained a heavy gold coin -- a bribery attempt. Bernbeck was asked to go to special lengths for a certain individual. But he personally returned the gold coin to the sender. "Send me flowers, cake, but nothing worth more than 100,000 toman," he said (100,000 toman is the equivalent of roughly €30).
Respect More Important than Peace
As someone who understands both worlds, Bernbeck has no problems imagining how the West came close to war with Iran. He says it has to do with a chain of observations, each of which is coherent in its own right, yet not necessarily understood by the other side.
An angry radical like former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad could only be elected because he represented the will for independence -- even if he spent billions on the nuclear program, ruined the economy and perhaps even endangered world peace. The Iranians thought that he would win back respect for their country, says Bernbeck. For many Iranians, respect is more important than peace.
Bernbeck packs his briefcase and puts on his winter coat. He wants to make an official visit to the new president of the Iranian Chamber of Industry and Commerce, where representatives of business organizations from around the world are standing in line.
On Vali-e Asr, the most prestigious avenue in the capital city, he gazes at a young couple. The two are walking hand in hand, and the girl's headscarf is only barely covering her hair in a halfhearted attempt to comply with the law. She is wearing black eyeliner and bright red lipstick. Behind the couple is a group of young, pious women dressed in black full-body hijabs that don't reveal a single lock of hair.
Looking at the couple, Bernbeck says that Iran has become a divided nation. Many Iranians long for freedom and individuality -- and their dreamland is the United States, he contends. The others still shout the same old hostile slogans -- like "death to America" -- after Friday prayers.
German Interest Comes Late
President Rohani would like to move his country forward economically, but he is hardly capable of easing the strict rules that govern Iranian society. The young woman wearing makeup can expect to be disciplined by the guardians of public morals. Bernbeck spreads out his hands like a horn of plenty. He says that the economy could perhaps change the country. But can money and prosperity also bring liberalization?
Since the beginning of Rohani's presidency, the pressure on young people has been even greater than at the end of Ahmadinejad's term in office. Private parties are raided by the guardians of public morals, websites are shut down, and the sites' operators are thrown in jail. An increasing number of prisoners sentenced to death row are hanged from construction cranes in the city streets.
The young people are going underground, literally. Many parties, concerts and art show openings are held in cellars, because it is cheaper and organizers are afraid of being persecuted.
"They play with us, get our hopes up and waste our time," says Gelareh Sheibani, "and I don't have that much time." She is 28, making her old enough to recall the enormous expectations that she pinned on earlier so-called attempts at reform, which ultimately failed. And now the hardliners in the country intend to show Rohani once again that they still call the shots.
Sheibani's dark hair falls down to her hips. She is sitting on a large velour armchair in a small recording studio in downtown Tehran basement. She is not wearing any jewelry, but she does wear eggplant-colored nail polish.
Sheibani is a singer. But solo singing by women is forbidden in Iran because it has an "erotic" effect on men, according to clerics. Nevertheless, she has launched her professional career and now regularly performs abroad.
Bernbeck rolls with his SUV into the garage of his home in Gholhak. With all the foreign delegations in Tehran he has to work late these days, and his three children are already in bed. Bernbeck checks his emails and discovers another three requests for information from Germany: What are the labeling requirements for energy drinks in Iran? How can I organize a pasta sales network? And, last but not least, please compile an analysis of merchant marine jobs on the Iranian coast.
The Germans are arriving late, but they are coming after all.
Translated from the German by Paul Cohen

The Real Enemy in The Middle East is Saudi Arabia:


170 comments:

  1. I have closed comments off to all except those with a blogger account. I apologize to those who are inconvenienced because of the aged delinquency of a few.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Gosh, that's gonna cut off Jenny. WiO will miss her.

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    2. Please don't mention me. I won't mention you.

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    3. Eff the ineffable, screw the inscrutable.

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    4. But in our camp, his story was everyone’s story,
      a single tale of dispossession,
      of being stripped to the bones of one’s humanity,
      of being dumped like rubbish into refugee camps unfit for rats.

      Of being left without rights, home, or nation
      while the world turned its back to watch or cheer the
      jubilation of the usurpers proclaiming a new state they called Israel.

      ― Susan Abulhawa, Mornings in Jenin

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  2. Someone may be sending a message to the Saudis.

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    1. There does not have to be an either/or outcome to the Syrian mayhem. That is, victory (whatever that is in Syria) need not go to al-Assad or a'Q. Let the strife continue until a leader emerges who is agreeable to Syrians and opposed to both Assad and a’Q.

      As for the Syrian forces and the "rebels" (how an invader becomes a rebel is a novel idea), there are no good guys. The longer they bleed one another the better for a new government. Moreover, as time passes, who is supporting whom (logistics) will become more apparent. This information will give a clearer picture of who will be a future friend or foe. Of further importance is observing how the sundry belligerents fight. This will yield information as to the level of leadership sophistication.

      It should be kept in mind that the degree to which Syria is weakened Lebanon may be strengthened. If Syrian air and armor are substantially degraded, Lebanon has a chance of ridding itself of the parasitic Hezbollah. With this in mind and to the extent possible, Hezbollah forces in Syria should be targeted, even if that means the occasional mysterious missile attack.

      Reports of the number of militant volunteers coming into Syria from outside the region vary by as much as 100%. Whatever the number may be, it is imperative that these fellows never return home for two reasons: 1) to deprive the enemy within the EU, for example, of knowledgeable veterans and 2) to send the message to would-be terrorists: If you fight you die. I suggest turning captured outsiders over to their opposite number as prisoners of war.

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    2. If Syrian air and armor are substantially degraded, Lebanon has a chance of ridding itself of the parasitic Hezbollah.

      So, yeah, expand the bombing to Cambodia. Four Dead In O Hi O.

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    3. The fight between the shits and the suns is far from over.

      No matter which western nation supports either.

      The shits? HATE the Suns. the Suns? HATE the shits. They hate each other even more than they hate Jews and Christians.

      The Jews and Christians? Are misguided, evil people of the "book". The Shits and the Suns view each other as APOSTATES.

      The blood letting between each other is historic.

      If Iran gets a nuke? The 1st place it would use it (indirectly or directly) would be on the Suns.

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    4. You almost have me hoping for the first time Iran gets the nuke.

      There's this old thing about hate - those that agree on most, but disagree on the details, sometimes end up hating each other more than they hate those that reject the whole outlook altogether.

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    5. Well let's look at the suns and shits world...

      From Pakistan, India and Indonesia on one side to Syria, Yemen, Sudan and Egypt on the other...

      (not to mention the communities of Europe, AmericaS and Asia (china) Islam is in a fight with it's self.

      Maybe the BEST thing to do is sit back and let each side beat the living snot our of each other....

      Look at fake nationalistic movement called "palestine".

      You have Abbas, the democratically elected president (who stopped having elections 5 years after his term expired) who can't even speak for 40% of the other folks in Gaza, who are represented by Hamas, who stopped having election after they tossed the Fatah members they didn't like off the roof tops...

      Now? Egypt is fed up with their Arab brother in Gaza for screwing with Egypt and supporting the Moslem Brotherhood, so Egypt bulldozed 1200 tunnels and is having daily shoot outs with Hamas members in the Sinai.

      On the Syrian front Assad is pissed at Hamas for initially supporting the rebels so they got thrown out of their historic terror headquarters in damascus and assay has displaced several tens of THOUSANDS of palestinians from their homes of 50/60 years. Scores and scores of these arabs have been murdered by assad, in some cases assad has blocked the exits of the palestinian camps causing real starvation...

      This was just one case in point..

      the islamists are self destructing.

      I got the extra buttery popcorn....

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    6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    7. “We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”
      ― Nelson Mandela

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  3. Not a mention of the 3 billion a year spent by Iran on funding, training and supplying Hezbollah and their 100,000 rockets aimed (and used) to murder Israeli civilians.

    Not a mention of the Iranians murdered in the streets by the Iranian revolutionary guards.

    Not a mention of the Iranian government's intentional targeting of, deploying and murder of civilian targets across the globe.

    The PEOPLE of Iran? Don't hate Israel. The government does.

    Iran, with or without sanctions (remember obama FOUGHT all sanctions and gave exceptions to over 21 nations) will spend 2-3 billion a year on it's nuke program. It is committed to a bomb. There is no need for 9/10ths of their program if they only want electricity.

    This will not end well...

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    1. I guess it's like the NSA saying you don't need 9/10ths of your privacy if you only want to Facebook and Skype your gramma. The right of Iran to enrich is a corollary of their right to be left the fuck alone. It also rolls out from our responsibility to mind our own fucking business.

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    2. Iran has no "right" to call for a full member state of the UN to be erased from the planet.

      America has every right to enforce freedom of trade and the seas. At last look America still is the lone superpower in the world and with the title comes the responsibility.

      Like it or not Iran and America are not equals, not even close.

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    3. That's really quite fucking inane, Miss T..........

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    4. America has every right to enforce freedom of trade and the seas. At last look America still is the lone superpower in the world and with the title comes the responsibility.

      We have seen the answer of the American People when Obama tried to start some shit in Syria. Americans are saying we don't want the title nor the responsibility. Israel wants to live in a tough neighborhood, they can send their own boys and girls to die. The time when Evangelical Christians could influence American policy so we have some skin in the end times game is over.

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    5. Israel wants to live in a tough neighborhood, they can send their own boys and girls to die.


      Wants? LOL you are funny..

      And they do send their sons and daughters to die. And their infants and their elderly.

      All of Israel and it's people are in the cross hairs of savages.

      you say "Israel wants to live in a tough neighborhood"

      No, Israel want to live in a peaceful neighborhood. You really have no idea about the real world, no matter how you squeeze a buck of the taxpayer....

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    6. The time when Evangelical Christians could influence American policy so we have some skin in the end times game is over.


      Gee, when those same "Evangelical Christians" opened up America for your historic people I guess they were misguided as well.. moron.

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    7. Evangelical Christians will be a force if energized to go to the polls. As the Duck Dump proved, when angered they will spontaneously come out of the woodwork by the millions.

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    8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    9. “A freedom fighter learns the hard way that it is the oppressor who defines the nature of the struggle ,and the oppressed is often left no recourse but to use methods that mirror those of the oppressor. At a point, one can only fight fire with fire”
      ― Nelson Mandela

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  4. Re: the legalized marijuana debate -

    So the reason to single out marijuana is the simple fact of its current (semi-)illegality. On balance, society will not be better off with another mind-altering legal substance. In particular, our kids will not be better off with another mind-altering legal substance.

    As the American Medical Association concluded in recommending against legalization last November, "Cannabis is a dangerous drug and as such is a public health concern." The association added: "It is the most common illicit drug involved in drugged driving, particularly in drivers under the age of 21. Early cannabis use is related to later substance use disorders."

    And this point, for me, is the most convincing: "Heavy cannabis use in adolescence causes persistent impairments in neurocognitive performance and IQ, and use is associated with increased rates of anxiety, mood, and psychotic thought disorders."

    A 2012 study of more than 1,000 New Zealanders from birth to age 38 found that "persistent cannabis use was associated with neuropsychological decline broadly across domains of functioning, even after controlling for years of education." Long-term users saw an average decline of eight IQ points.

    Once again, teenage toking was the problem. The decrease in IQ was linked only to those with adolescent marijuana use, not those who started in adulthood.

    "Impairment was concentrated among adolescent-onset cannabis users, with more persistent use associated with greater decline," the study reported. For those who started as teens, stopping didn't fully restore functioning. The results, it concluded "are suggestive of a neurotoxic effect of cannabis on the adolescent brain."


    Read more: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2014/01/03/the_perils_of_legalized_marijuana.html#ixzz2pLaLvXH3
    Follow us: @RCP_Articles on Twitter


    Why do they call it dope again?

    Dr. Ben Carson - who should be our Health Czar if we are to have one - was making the same points on Fox yesterday -

    It is a gateway drug, and it harms young minds.

    SAT scores are set to decline.

    California will get aboard this train soon, and Alaska too, and Oregon......

    Miss T will soon be living in a state whose youth are among the least bright bulbs in the entire country.....

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    1. I am not against decriminalization of pot.

      That being said? It will be a legal and cheap way to keep 25% of the population stoned and without anxiety.

      Some reefer, netflix and cheap McDonalds and a small room can house a 20 something boy who will never cause trouble or bother society.

      Welcome to the matrix

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    2. Bob,

      I do not disagree with most of what you say. However, tens of millions of Americans are unemployable and will never be employable. Is it better to have them calm or destroying malls as flash mobs?

      Delete
    3. give them pot, hot pockets and basements in their parents homes...

      then blink, they will be 50, fat and out of shape...

      Most "revolutionary" fighters are NOT in their 50's

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    4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    5. Hey Deuce, why not delete the offensive post (above)?

      you have no problem using that delete button on me for far less...

      Delete
    6. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  5. Security analyst: Hezbollah continues transferring arms from Syria to Lebanon


    Everything is connected.

    Why would Hezbollah transfer arms? They could be afraid of losing them to rebels. Assad could be afraid of losing them to rebels. Hezbollah is trying to compensate for lost troops with intimidating technology.

    Teresita,

    Re: Cambodia

    There is no comparison. On Wednesday and Thursday we used Hellfire missiles against Syrian “rebels” in western Iraq (Cambodia). If today’s reports are to be believed, our intervention had no effect; the “rebels” have taken over new additional territory in two, western Iraqi cities. Cambodia did not beg our help, Iraq is.

    My preference is for an infantry fight. This will reduce all combatants to a taxing crawl. That is just fine. When the war ends, I want all belligerents as weak as possible. To accomplish that, Syrian air and armor must be hammered.

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    1. Russia is resupplying Syria unabated.

      have not heard much about Russia's med port lately, so I don't know if they are bringing in the heavy stuff, but the flights from iran to syria are going strong bringing ammo and in some cases troops.

      Hezbollah and the republican guard are fighting side by side with assad's troops, don't know if that will weaken hezbollah enough, however it is causing local blowback in lebanon. With so many fighters in syria it is creating a vacuum in lebanon.

      Blaming al queda or the saudis in a knee jerk fashion in lebanon may be an overstatement.

      There is a sizable number of lebanese that hate hezbollah (from several quarters) they do not forget hezbollah coming into Beirut 2-3 years ago guns a blazing taking over the airport, radio stations and murdering their way into "political power"..

      Political vacuums are interesting..

      It's going to get ugly.

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    3. LOL look who woke up and created a login!!!!

      Now the rat droppings will continue...

      It was too good to last...

      Deuce your pal is back... LOL

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    4. Hegemony of Character
      On Blogger since January 2014
      Profile views - 1


      LOL

      Pathetic

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    5. At least we know it ain't Anonobob, who took three years to figure out how to make his name clicky.

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    6. A man who will lie about a NSA contract(s) to Israel in the amount of $110 billion USD plays a thoroughly mischievous part in the life of our body politic because he is an un-American liar and racist propagandist for Islam.

      Delete
    7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    8. There is no comparison. On Wednesday and Thursday we used Hellfire missiles against Syrian “rebels” in western Iraq (Cambodia). If today’s reports are to be believed, our intervention had no effect; the “rebels” have taken over new additional territory in two, western Iraqi cities. Cambodia did not beg our help, Iraq is.

      The Cambodia reference is to the concept of mission creep. Nixon went into Cambodia to interdict the Ho Chi Mihn Trail, but the effect was to put the Vietnam war in a posture of expansion at a time when the American people wanted to wrap things up. Now you're saying we should intervene in Lebanon. This will put the Syrian civil war on track to become a regional war, at a time when the American people are CLEARLY tired of it all.

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    9. He certainly has delusions of grandeur. "Captain America" just would not do.

      :-D))

      PS: I've had my shot at the troll for today and there is nothing else to say...almost

      Troll, troll go away
      Find another blog to play
      Sitting at your keyboard nude
      Writing always something crude
      Smoke that weed and go to bed
      Before another word is said
      Troll, troll, go away
      Find another blog to play

      Delete
    10. Teresita RedingerFri Jan 03, 10:35:00 AM EST
      Re: intervention in Lebanon

      I hope that was not the impression given. The US is involved in Iraq and Syria, as is Hezbollah. Therefore, bringing some hurt to Hezbollah in Syria and/or Iraq would be good.

      As to Lebanon, if Hezbollah is overextended in Syria, the Lebanese have a chance to free themselves. Hezbollah's attempts to bring into Lebanon arms prohibited by treaty is something Israel can handle.

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    11. Teresita,

      Lest I be misunderstood, the fight in western Iraq belongs to the Iraqi government. For ten years the Iraqi armed forces have been trained and equipped by America. It is time for them to earn their pay. If we can assist with some air power, fine; but no American boots on the ground and no American complaints if the Iraqis do not fight as neatly and ineffectually as we.

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    12. The Israeli government has, to a large extent, continued the Ottoman legal system in regard to land ownership. 

      Thus, today the vast proportion of land within the State of Israel (roughly 93%) is owned and managed either by the Israel Lands Administration (ILA) or the JNF.  This figure includes much of such extensive regions as the Negev and the Judean Wilderness (near the Dead Sea), which are sparsely populated. 

      Jewish settlements in the State of Israel usually are located on lands that are owned by the ILA or the JNF and that have been consigned to each settlement through long-term leases. 

      Less than 7% of the land in the State of Israel is privately owned.


      http://elearning.la.psu.edu/jst060/lesson_2/land-ownership

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  6. Hegemony of Character


    At least we now can scroll past his nonsense with out slowing down...

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  7. The Pentagon’s Incredible $1.5 Trillion Mistake

    But when they are put into active use, they have multiple tactical problems. They don’t have a long range, so they need to be close to the field of battle. They lack the weapons systems to adequately support ground forces. And they’re at a disadvantage in a dogfight because of limited turning capability.

    Even if the planes were perfectly functional, they were built for a different era. The United States has unsurpassed global air superiority. If the F-35 order is filled, DOD will have 15 times as many planes as China. The F-35 was designed to fight a war between large military powers, not ones against insurgents in Mali.


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    1. The DoD is planning on keeping this plane serviceable for 55 years! Right... It is already obsolete. Compare it to the F-22. Whether the stealth model recently exhibited by the Chinese is for real does not matter for the moment. What does matter is that China is working in that direction.

      Israel needs to resurrect its abandoned fighter plane program and live with the cost. Strategically, I do not see that it has any other choice.

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    2. I dare to say, luck is simply the advantage a true warrior gains in executing the correct course of action.
      ” ― R.A. Salvatore

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  8. By replicating what Deuce hoped to end, Desert Rat is mocking the host, saying, "I don't care what you want; you cannot touch me; I'll do as I please to your blog."

    Desert Rat's behavior can no longer be seen in the light of freedom of expression. The guy just will not play by the rules of the blog. His miscreant attitude should prove his undoing.

    Take the bum down!

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    1. Being read "The Riot Act" is not censorship; it is the law. If you do not like Deuce's policy, go elsewhere.

      Delete
  9. .

    1. DeuceFri Jan 03, 04:51:00 AM EST
    I have closed comments off to all except those with a blogger account. I apologize to those who are inconvenienced because of the aged delinquency of a few.


    I appreciate Deuce’s efforts to bring some sanity to the blog even at the expense of losing some interesting posters to the slugs here. Unfortunately, as is obvious from the tripe posted here this morning, the usual suspects will find a way around it.

    However, from the actions taken by Deuce I sense he nears the end of his patience and we are likely to see the bar, or now salon, closed down again soon. Therefore, I figured I would get in at least one more post in while I can. The following is merely my opinion.

    I believe the rat and his pathologies are evident to everyone here. He despoils every post stream he touches. Long ago, he evidently found individual thought burdensome and instead elected to befoul the blog with an endless loop of quotes from his betters. Unfortunately, the rat’s editing skills are lacking and his posts are for the most part inane non-sequiturs. When you actually stoop to quoting Susan Etheridge you know you have reached bottom. Even more unfortunate is the fact that even she remains his better.

    That being said, the rat has his enablers and foils, The Three Stooges as they were described recently. In my opinion, it was the redundant arguments between the rat and this cohort that precipitated Whit’s departure. The less than gentlemanly repartee between posters here (myself included) likely led to the departure of others such as the infrequent female posters. Again, just my opinion.

    As to the most important issues of the day

    I believe that the governments of EVERY country in the ME are a bunch of dicks, all striving for power and at least half of them striving for hegemony amidst a foul brew of nationalism, sectarianism, and religious fanaticism. This includes all of our so-called allies. My sympathies go out to the millions of ordinary people there who have been killed or turned into refugees by these dicks. For decades, the region has been sucking up US resources with little benefit coming back in the other direction.

    And that is not to say we don’t have our own problems here. History, is rife with instances of us contributing to the discord there. Only, these are our problems and we don’t need the advice from those who call themselves Americans but yet would put the interests of another country before those of the US. IMO, to the extent possible we should avoid getting involved in the miasma there. We have already proved ourselves incapable of affecting the region in a positive manner.

    As for the US, the biggest problems I see here are that we are rapidly turning into a police state and that the economic system is skewed to the benefit of the 1% at the expense of the other 99%.

    The proofs of the first assertion are too numerous to repeat. To this point, the people have reacted as sheeple, willing to give up basic rights in exchange for the big brother government's promise to protect them, a promise that is all but meaningless given the insignificant chance that the events would occur in the first place and the governments piss poor record of prevention.

    The only effective response I can see that will come to this executive overreach must come from either the courts or from Congress. In the past, I felt that SCOTUS would ultimately be the one place that the executive would be told no. Now, after reviewing the history of opinions that the current court members have been involved in on the First, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments, I am not quite as sanguine. Their record is a mixed on. It may come down to Congress being forced to act, a thin reed on which to pin your hopes.

    (continued below)

    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      (continued)


      With regard to the disparity we see between the progress of the 1% and the other 99%, it is apparent in our tax codes, government policies, the FED, education, you name it. It continues regardless of which party is in power. I view recent populist rhetoric by one side in this debate as merely the cynical tossing of trinkets to the natives in preparation for the 2014 elections. In the end, they are all the same.

      My view of the current administration is cynical as it has been of past administrations. This has led to my frequent arguments with my bud Rufus and others. While he may think I don’t like Obama because he is black, that is not really the case. I don’t like the man because he is arrogant, insolated, has no apparent concern about the rule of law or constitutional limits on the executive, refuses to accept responsibility for any mistakes, he lies (to be expected in a politician), and he has priorities that I disagree with.

      I do not have problems with the ACA or the push for alternative fuels in general. However, with regard to the ACA, I do have problems with specific aspects of the plan as it is being rolled out by HHS, with the way it was pushed through Congress without review, and with the ad hoc way it is being implemented. Likewise, there are specifics (such as the mandates) I disagree with on alternative fuels as well as with an unrealistic, IMO, optimism on timing and implementation that is evident in some.

      I also believe that for every drop of rain that falls a flower grows.

      .

      Delete
    2. .

      A buffoon by any other name will still stink up the joint.

      .

      Delete
    3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
    4. .

      An editorial note.

      After I put up the post above, I spotted an obvious misspelling, 'insolated' instead of 'insulated' in reference to Obama. I was going to apologize for the typo but then, wondering why spell check didn't kick in, I looked up the meaning of insolated. It actually means exposed to the sun. Therefore, I decided to leave it. After five years, Obama has been exposed to the harsh light of day and been found wanting.

      That he is also insulated goes without saying.

      .

      Delete
    5. A raped girl is bad for the family: it shows that they can’t protect their women;
      that they have little social standing; and that they’re not respectable.

      It’s worse for the victim because once a woman, or a girl—or a boy—is known as the target of a rape she becomes so despised, so shamed, so worthless that she turns into public property.

      No one is raped only once.

      ― Louise Brown,
      The Dancing Girls of Lahore:
      Selling Love and Saving Dreams in Pakistan's Pleasure District

      Delete
  10. He's getting what he wants, of course, which is attention. At least from some people.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Ask yourself this question...

    What have I created today?

    What have improved?

    Deuce has the power to publicly tell the disruptors to shut up. He has done that with me numerous times, including taking down my posts. Most of the posts Deuce has censored of mine? Hardly guilty of anything other than pissing off the host.

    Apparently the most obnoxious posts that we all agree are distracting, insulting, off topic and lies do not upset Deuce enough for him to take any actions.

    This lack of action? is action...

    ReplyDelete
  12. Man, oh man, the stuff you miss during the year when you’re too busy texting, making Angry Cat photos and unsuccessfully signing up for government health plans

    http://tbo.com/ap/technology/50-things-we-know-now-we-didnt-know-this-time-last-year-20131229/

    Number 45 will explain why you shouldn't have a couple of beers, during lunch, before returning to work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      We were talking about this very thing at the bar the other night. There was a heated argument about the connection or lack thereof of the of the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex, however, the conversation soon turned to women and son.

      .

      Delete
    2. .

      Actually what the guy meant was 'women and song' but he was pretty drunk at the time.

      .

      Delete
    3. .

      1. The morning-after pill Norlevo, an emergency contraceptive manufactured in Europe, is completely ineffective in women who weigh more than 176 pounds.

      Another reason a guy has to be careful in a bar after 1:00 am.

      .

      Delete
    4. .

      7. Sixty percent of all lice are now “super lice,” meaning they are resistant to the chemicals that are traditionally used to treat them.

      A fact proved true, by Deuce's failed attempts to correct the problem here this morning.

      .

      Delete
    5. It's also the hot topic when I'm sitting around the bar, but as we know when dealing with drunken men it always ends in a bar brawl.

      Delete
    6. Maybe I should test out that glass of wine. We can talk about Saudi Arabia at another time.

      Delete
    7. .

      I remember those days, Mel, but they didn't 'always' end up in a bar brawl.

      The wine sounds like a good idea.

      Thinking of you.

      Stay

      .

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

      Delete
    9. .

      This is where I get all my moves.

      Dynamite

      .

      Delete
    10. “The split in America, rather than simply economic, is between those who embrace reason, who function in the real world of cause and effect, and those who, numbed by isolation and despair, now seek meaning in a mythical world of intuition, a world that is no longer reality-based, a world of magic.”
      ― Chris Hedges,

      Delete
    11. .

      Mel: I get my dance moves from here.


      :)

      You're cute as a button.

      .

      Delete
  13. .

    With regard to the main topic, there is little doubt, IMO, that Saudi Arabia is the biggest enemy of the US in the ME.

    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With out a doubt Saudi Arabia & Iran are both enemies of the USA. This is not a contest nor a either or situation.

      Delete
  14. Happy New Year, Quirk

    What the hell is going on in here? :/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      Happy New Year to you Mel.

      Hope you had a good one on New Years Eve.

      .

      Delete
    2. .

      As for what is going on here, just the same old same ol. Mostly, the same bull from most, although the rat has gone off the deep end. I blame it on licking the toads.

      Hasn't been the same since the ladies left and took all sense of balance with them. I miss the days of you talking about road trips and Trish talking about shoes and family get-togethers, and of course the pirates and the music.

      Shit happens.

      .

      Delete
    3. Happy New Year, Mel...May it bring you all you wish.

      Delete
  15. The Jewish State and the Story the Palestinians Hold Dear

    In today’s Jerusalem Post, Khaled Abu Toameh reports that Palestinian sources have told the Palestinian daily Al-Quds that the “most dangerous” part of Secretary of State Kerry’s proposed “framework” is Israel’s demand that the Palestinians recognize it as a Jewish state. One can see why: if the Palestinians accepted it, they would have to end the conflict.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Topical Comments

    allenFri Jan 03, 11:30:00 AM EST
    This entire comment is off topic and meant to disrupt the flow of Deuce's topic for today. You should take it down and get with the program, assuming you have something germane to add.



    allenFri Jan 03, 01:20:00 PM EST
    By replicating what Deuce hoped to end, Desert Rat is mocking the host, saying, "I don't care what you want; you cannot touch me; I'll do as I please to your blog."

    Desert Rat's behavior can no longer be seen in the light of freedom of expression. The guy just will not play by the rules of the blog. His miscreant attitude should prove his undoing.

    Take the bum down!



    allenFri Jan 03, 01:30:00 PM EST
    Being read "The Riot Act" is not censorship; it is the law. If you do not like Deuce's policy, go elsewhere.


    This may be "tripe" when compared to gems such as "stinking up the place" and "licking toads", but it is measured, thoughtful, and the reader comes away with some grasp of reality.





    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      This may be "tripe" when compared to gems such as "stinking up the place" and "licking toads", but it is measured, thoughtful, and the reader comes away with some grasp of reality.

      :)

      In addition, this comment is pompous, supercilious, and typical.

      .

      Delete
    2. The Bolshevik decision to withdraw the Russian troops from Iran in favour of supporting the national liberation forces created a vacuum in Iran which the British attempted to fill. The dynamic impact of the Bolshevik Revolution on the Iranian liberation movement and the discovery and exploitation of huge reservoirs of petroleum in Iran made the British move in the direction of colonising Iran [63].
       

      Throughout the period from 1918 to 1920, the British permitted officers of Denikin and other white Russian generals to use Iran as a base from which to wage their wars against Lenin's Russia [64]. Apart from supplies furnished to the anti-Bolshevik Russians, the British troops, under the leadership of Dunsterville, moved north through Iran and, with the aid of Russian white Guards occupied the valuable oil provinces of the Caucasus. These military aggressions by the British forces could hardly fail to attract attention in Moscow

      Delete
    3. QuirkFri Jan 03, 05:43:00 PM EST
      In addition, this comment is pompous, supercilious, and typical.

      Right.

      To your comments I would add judgmental.

      Delete
  17. Al Qaeda Flag Flies over City Where Marines Fought Largest Battle of Iraq War

    “At the moment, there is no presence of the Iraqi state in Fallujah,” a local journalist told Post reporter Liz Sly. In the province’s capital of Ramadi, however, local tribesman who fought alongside U.S. troops have reportedly been successful at ousting Al Qaeda rebels from the city.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh well, Blackwater and defense contractors already cashed their checks.

      Delete
  18. Ratmeister: Palestinians are not struggling for a “state” but for freedom, liberation and equality,
    just like we were struggling for freedom in South Africa.


    Sure, their struggle for liberation takes the form of destroying the greenhouses in Gaza when they took over. They never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "The so-called “Palestinian autonomous areas” are Bantustans.
      These are restricted entities within the power structure of the Israeli Apartheid system."

      - N. Mandela

      The Palestinians are in their "Ghettos", on their "Reserves"

      Palestinian lackeys rule over the fractured and factionalized Palestinians, $100 million a month the Israeli pay their house boy Arabs in baksheesh.

      Just as the Germans used Ashkenazi guards in the Warsaw Ghetto.

      The first commander of the Warsaw ghetto was Józef Szeryński, a Polish-Jewish police colonel.

      Warsaw Ghetto archivist Emanuel Ringelblum has described the cruelty of the ghetto police as ...
      "at times greater than that of the Germans, the Ukrainians and the Latvians."

      Delete
  19. Rat is giving the dirty finger to Deuce.

    In addition to everyone else......

    "Take the bum down" -Allen

    I agree.

    He adds nothing.

    He detracts immensely.

    His whole point now is simply to disrupt the place.



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One properly loses one's freedom of speech when all one does is disrupt the conversations or speeches of others.

      Such a person is justifiably thrown out of the auditorium.

      Delete

    2. “We never see other people anyway, only the monsters we make of them.”

      ― Colson Whitehead

      Delete


    3. Farmer Bob's Emporium of Urbicultural Apocalyptica


      This blog by Bob6stringer, masquerading as Farmer Bob from 2001 - present.


      http://farmerbob.blogspot.com/

      Delete
  20. Israeli-Palestinian peace talks: Is Kerry offering up US troops?

    Last week the JP carried a story of Kerry's testing the water with Israel. Israel is firmly opposed.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Replies
    1. To determine whether there was ever a Jewish community in the town, a mikva must be found. Since a mikva must collect water from a free flowing spring or stream, a survey would be required to find if any were readily accessible or if town records refer to such sources. Given the passage of time, it is likely that the building housing the mikva would have been razed or been converted to some other use. Often the stonework of an abandoned mikva will be used for other nearby projects. Scholars would look for anything resembling writing in Hebrew, Aramaic, or Ladino.

      If a mikva can be found, the community was Jewish. This is the case because orthodox Jews, and especially women, have need of the ritual bath at least monthly. Therefore, a mikva would prove that Chinese wives had converted to Judaism; thereby, making their offspring Jewish. This is the case whether they are aware of it or not. It is the case whether they now practice Judaism or not. All female children born into a Jewish matriarchal line will carry on the ethnic tie.

      The article refers to documents. This suggests contact with a rabbi at some point. He may have come with the original traders, bringing with him the scrolls needed for worship. Rabbis were great travelers. Any documents or fragments should be examined for telltale signs of Jewish origin. For example, a rabbi on a mission to establish a Jewish community would have carried with him a Torah scroll. Every sentence in the Torah begins with a “vav”, the letter standing for “and”. Even a Chinese copy would carry this unusual characteristic.

      Delete


  22. "I also believe that for every drop of rain that falls a flower grows"

    Quirk

    Well God Bless ya, Quirk. What a wonderful thought. Overly maudlin and sentimental to the ends of the earth though it may be..........it's the thought that counts !!......

    You're obviously on the sauce again, a vodka fueled rush of pure love.....

    But if that's what it takes to so beautifully express a lovely optimistic joy in just being.....so be it !!!!

    Good ol' Quirk ! He's our man, he can be sappy if anybody can.......!


    Definition of maudlin (adj)

    Bing Dictionary
    maud·lin
    [ máwdlin ]


    1.sentimental: overly or tearfully sentimental, especially because affected by alcohol

    Synonyms: mushy · syrupy · overemotional · weepy · self-pitying · mawkish · soppy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      Yes and I also believe that somewhere in the darkest night
      a candle glows and that for everyone who goes astray
      someone will come to show the way.

      And I believe above the storm the smallest prayer
      can still be heard and that someone in the great somewhere
      hears every word.

      And that every time, I hear new born baby cry
      or touch a leaf or see the sky then I know why
      I believe.

      And I believe that Elvis has left the building.

      .

      Delete
  23. Comic relief --

    King Tut mummied up with a hard on -


    http://www.livescience.com/42290-king-tut-mummified-penis-explained.html

    King Tut's Erect Pecker Finally Explained

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At one time, the Erect Pecker seems to have 'gone missing'.

      Coincidentally, an ad appeared at this time in The Detroit Trader offering -- "King Tut's Pecker - will trade for pickup camper- send self addressed stamped envelope to Box 10000001, Detroit, Michigan for details"

      Delete
  24. Quirk,

    Is Jordan Palestine?

    One reason people are confused about the question of “Is Jordan Palestine” has to do the various stakeholder agendas and where the agenda lie on a timeline.

    This was posted several hours following a brilliant debate between you and WiO. I will resist the temptation to characterize your attitude during this argument; those interested can look back to 30 Dec ’13 and draw their own conclusions.

    Dr. Pipe’s wrote this paper in 1988. He has revisited it twice (1999 and 2009) only to reaffirm his position. That position, by the way, is the one held by you: Jordan is not Palestine. However, in the interest of intellectual integrity, he gave space to conflicting opinions. These opinions were not those of the man on the street; they were those of politically powerful people, rulers. While you may think quite highly of your opinion, that view is not shared by those who matter in determining such things; they concur with WiO.

    In the 1920s, Vladimir Jabotinsky asserted that Palestine is a territory whose chief geographical feature is that ‘the Jordan River does not delineate its frontiers but flows through its center.’

    In 1982, Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir wrote that, "reduced to its true proportions, the problem is clearly not the lack of a homeland for the Palestinian Arabs. That homeland is Trans-Jordan, or Eastern Palestine.... A second Palestinian state to the west of the River is a prescription for anarchy." A clandestine agreement in 1987 between the Likud party and Faysal al-Husayni, the Palestinian activist, reportedly recognized Palestinian sovereignty east of the Jordan River.

    Nor is this just the view of politicians; Mordechai Nisan, a scholar, explains that "nobody ever considered the two sides of the Jordan River anything but integral parts of a single land called Palestine." Many American supporters of Israel accept the Jordan-is-Palestine argument. Joan Peters premises her study, From Time Immemorial, on this notion. She routinely calls Israel a "corner of Palestine" and "Western Palestine," while "Eastern Palestine" is her term for Jordan. George F. Will states that "Jordan is Palestine-historically, geographically, ethnically."

    Continue Page 2

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here we arrive at a critical point for Jordan-is-Palestiners: the British now for the first time called their whole territory in the Levant the "Mandate for Palestine." In other words, starting in July 1920, Jordan formed part of Palestine, as least as far as the British were concerned.

      Churchill divided the Palestine Mandate into two parts along the Jordan River, creating the Emirate of Transjordan on the east bank and excluding Jewish immigration there. Churchill offered this territory to Faysal's older brother, 'Abdallah, who after some hesitation accepted. The Hashemite dynasty of 'Abdallah, his son Tallal, and his grandson Husayn have ruled Transjordan (or Jordan, as it was renamed in 1949) ever since. After March 1921, the east bank was no longer Palestine.

      The Palestine Liberation Organization has often declared Jordan a part of Palestine, and occasionally lays formal claim to it. The eighth conference of the Palestine National Council (PNC), meeting in February-March 1971, resolved that "what links Jordan to Palestine is a national bond and a national unity formed, since time immemorial, by history and culture. The establishment of one political entity in Transjordan and another in Palestine is illegal.

      Individual spokesmen have made even more specific claims. The PLO's first chief, Ahmad ash-Shuqayri argued that Jordan's 1950 annexation of the West Bank was actually an annexation of the east bank to Palestine. For him, Palestine "stretched from the Mediterranean Sea in the west to the Syrian-Iraqi desert." In 1966, a PLO representative to Lebanon declared Jordan "an integral part of Palestine, exactly like Israel."

      The establishment of Israel in 1948 hardly affected Hashemite claims to Palestine. The Jordanian prime minister declared in August 1959: "We here in Jordan, led by our great king [Husayn] are the government of Palestine, the army of Palestine, and we are the refugees." The king himself stated in 1965 that "the two peoples have integrated; Palestine has become Jordan, and Jordan Palestine." He also declared that "those organizations which seek to differentiate between Palestinians and Jordanians are traitors…

      Prime Minister Zayd ar-Rifa'i [Jordan] told an interviewer in 1975:
      Jordan is Palestine. They have never been ruled as two separate states except during the British Mandate.

      King al-Husayn [Jordan] asserted again in 1981 that "Jordan is Palestine and Palestine is Jordan."

      After a breakdown of diplomatic efforts between Jordan and the PLO in February 1986, the king announced that he speaks "as one who feels he is a Palestinian." Soon after, 'Akif al-Fayiz, President of the Jordanian Parliament, declared that "Jordan does not distinguish between its people on the East and on the West Bank…

      Is Jordan Palestine?

      Delete
    2. That homeland is Trans-Jordan, or Eastern Palestine....

      And the Galilee/Golan region is Northern Palestine.

      Haifa and Tel Aviv sit on Western Palestine.

      The Negev is Southern Palestine.

      Jerusalem is Central Palestine.

      Formerly known as Canaan.

      Delete
    3. .

      One reason people are confused about the question of “Is Jordan Palestine” has to do the various stakeholder agendas and where the agenda lie on a timeline.

      I am not in the least confused as to whether Jordan is Palestine though some may have a different interpretation than me and others may truly be confused. I merely define Palestine as I would assume it is defined today by most people in the US.

      In my initial comment, I said that Israel now possesses 100% of Palestine. In doing so I was referring to Palestine as it has been described since the Mandate was formed by the League of Nations, Palestine as it is designated in the maps included in this link

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestine

      Given the way I was using the word Palestine, my answer to the question 'Is Jordan Palestine' is no.

      Prior to the Mandate, Transjordan was already a semi-autonomously ruled region under the Hashemites though supervised by the British even in the pre-mandate period. While it was formally part of the British Palestinian Mandate it was generally spoken of separately from Mandatory Palestine. It remained autonomous and operated differently from that section of the mandate west of the Jordan known as Palestine. It was the land west of the Jordan I was talking about in my comment. It is land most people in the West would today think of when talking about Palestine.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mandatory_Palestine

      WiO challenged my interpretation of Palestine insisting that it was in error because it didn't include Jordan. I find his argument questionable on a couple of counts. First, take a look at the history of Palestine. What gives WiO any more right to define what is 'Palestine' than me? Why should I have to change the wording of my statement to accommodate WiO just because he picks his own time in the history of the region to define its geographical boundaries?

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Palestine

      If WiO, or you, want to say Jordan is Palestine that's fine with me. The obvious corollary then is Israel is Palestine. For some reason, WiO has objected to this designation in the past.

      As for me, my statement stands as initially posted. Jordan has been an independent nation since 1946.

      .

      Delete
    4. Jordan was part of it...

      your statement , "I said that Israel now possesses 100% of Palestine"

      Is bullshit. Gaza, a large portion of the West Bank and Jordan are not in 100% Israeli possession.

      To say that is to play fast and loose with the facts.

      As for the Jordan contention? By rights of self determination, by historic concepts, Jordan is arab Palestine. the "king" of Jordan is a carpet bagger.


      Delete
    5. .

      Jordan was part of it.

      Perhaps geographically, not politically. Regardless of its political status in the past or your opinion of it, it is not now. Jordan became an independent nation in 1946.

      your statement , "I said that Israel now possesses 100% of Palestine"

      Is bullshit. Gaza, a large portion of the West Bank and Jordan are not in 100% Israeli possession.


      Nonsense, I usually choose my words very carefully. Possession is both apt and applicable. I gave you the definition and an explanation of its applicability the other day. I won't bother to repeat it.

      the "king" of Jordan is a carpet bagger.

      Lordy, then what does that make Israel? It was Faisal and the Arabs that helped the Brits defeat the Ottoman Empire in the ME. It was the Arabs that were promised the land at the same time it was also being promised to the Jews.

      .





      Delete
    6. QuirkFri Jan 03, 10:30:00 PM EST
      I am not in the least confused as to whether Jordan is Palestine

      The world will sleep better knowing that. But you will not be making the decision. People in power will. Whether the outcome is to the liking of you and Dr. Pipes or WiO remains to be seen.

      As to what most Americans think about the question, I doubt they do. What most Americans do support is an unmolested Israel, that being the matter of fact.

      As to my opinion, I have not expressed it.

      You forgot that little matter of the unlawful occupation of the West Bank by Jordan in 1948 and the ethnic cleansing of Jews that followed, including a centuries’ old patrimony in the “Open” City of Jerusalem.

      Jordan did not renounce its sovereignty over the Territories until 1988.

      The purpose of my posting was to respectfully show that there is no uniformity of opinion on the question of “Is Jordan Palestine”. I hold Daniel Pipes in the greatest personal and professional regard; however, I disagree with the logic used to arrive at his conclusion. That would be true even if I totally agreed with his conclusion.

      Logically, one cannot have Jordan as Palestine without including Israel as Palestine. This is dilemma easily dealt with by the Palestinians, there is no Israel. In an earlier link, I reported that this denial of a Jewish state is the sticking point for the Palestinians in negotiating with Kerry. Abbas will never agree to accept a Jewish Israel, just as his counterparts have refused to accept a Christian Lebanon.

      I have enjoyed this exchange because it has forced me to think and study primary documents. My sole regret is the all too frequent lack of civility evident is such exchanges.

      Delete
    7. .

      You forgot that little matter of the unlawful occupation of the West Bank by Jordan in 1948 and the ethnic cleansing of Jews that followed, including a centuries’ old patrimony in the “Open” City of Jerusalem.

      I forgot nothing. My initial comment which started this was regarding the situation as it exists today. You talk of the West Bank as it existed in 1948. The question becomes, if it was an 'unlawful occupation' by Jordan in 1948 what do you call it today when Israel is occupying it?

      .

      Delete
    8. .

      As to the current peace talks, why even discuss the issue of Israel as a Jewish state. It is merely one of the many 'red lines' drawn by both sides in an ongoing dispute that will never be resolved on a negotiated basis. Any hope that there would ever be a settlement ended over 20 years ago, if it ever really existed at all. All that exists now is a long drawn out kabuki leading to Israel's settlement of the West Bank. Though Mr. Kerry obviously doesn't seem to get it.
      .

      Delete
    9. .

      But you will not be making the decision. People in power will.

      What decision are you talking about? Who are these people in power?

      .


      Delete
    10. QuirkSat Jan 04, 01:11:00 AM EST
      what do you call it today when Israel is occupying it?

      Jordan occupied in the since of running the territory as if it were a vassal. Anything done had to meet with Jordan's approval. And this at a time when Jordan had made every non-Jew a citizen of Jordan.

      Israel attempts to keep the lid on. It does not meddle in the day-to-day living of Jordan's now disenfranchised citizens.

      Delete
    11. QuirkSat Jan 04, 01:24:00 AM EST
      .

      As to the current peace talks, why even discuss the issue of Israel as a Jewish state


      It is not a red line. It is the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies to Israel. All the talk that has gone before and all that will follow is a waste unless Israel is recognized as a sovereign state. To accept less would make it a virus in the body of Arabia, to be erradicated.

      Delete
    12. .

      Israel has been recognized as a sovereign state. Surely, you recognize that fact. It has not been recognized as a Jewish state, a concept that is foreign to me personally being raised an American in the Western culture.

      I also don't know why Israel would give a shit if others recognize them as a Jewish as long as they recognize them as a sovereign state.

      To me it is merely one more excuse. There is no possibility of Israel willingly allowing the creation of a Palestinian state in the West Bank or Gaza. We have the words of Israeli prime ministers going back a couple decades, including the current one, indicating that they have willfully sabotaged formal peace talks.

      As I said, all the talk we see is merely kabuki in order to draw out the charade.

      You waste our time talking about specific issues as if they really meant anything in the big picture.

      .

      Delete
    13. .

      You didn't answer my question.

      The question becomes, if it was an 'unlawful occupation' by Jordan in 1948 what do you call it today when Israel is occupying it?

      .

      Delete
    14. .

      You also ignored my other questions.

      In talking about Jordan and Palestine, you said

      But you will not be making the decision. People in power will.

      What decision are you talking about? Who are these people in power?

      .

      Delete
    15. QuirkSat Jan 04, 09:09:00 AM EST
      .

      You didn't answer my question.

      The question becomes, if it was an 'unlawful occupation' by Jordan in 1948 what do you call it today when Israel is occupying it?


      I did not answer your question because I was sleeping.

      Israel is not occupying the disputed territory, as I believe I have said before.

      In 1948, Jordan "conquered" the West Bank with every intention of making it part of a sovereign Jordan. It garrisoned the place and gave citizenship to the Palestinian residents (later revoked). Courts were established and a police force put in place. Succinctly, the West Bank became a province of what would become the nation of Jordan. Contrary to UN resolutions, Jordan closed Jerusalem to Jews and ethnically cleansed its newly acquired province etc. etc. etc.

      Israel has done none of these things.

      Despite these egregious violations by Jordan, the UN remained mute. As far as the world community was concerned, it was tough luck for the Jews. Since this was all happening several years after the Holocaust, Jews came to the conclusion that they would have to obtain justice by other means, in their own way.

      Safe to say, you will not be one of the decision makers on the final partition of the disputed territories. As things stand today, Mr. Netanyahu and his political coalition will decide for Israel under what conditions an agreement can be reached. Assuming Mr. Abbas does speak for the Palestinians, he and his party will speak for that side. Hamas remains the wild card.


      Delete
    16. .

      Israel is not occupying the disputed territory, as I believe I have said before.

      A ridiculous statement.

      In 1948, Jordan "conquered" the West Bank with every intention of making it part of a sovereign Jordan.

      I won't even argue with that. However, what I will argue is that Israel has every intention of making the West Bank part of Greater Israel. The history of the peace talks, the words of Israeli politicians, the continuous march of settlements, the increased value of the land and resources, as well as, the kabuki known as the peace talks all argue that view. Only a fool would deny it.

      You piss and moan about the actions of Jordan then argue that Jews came to the conclusion that they would have to obtain justice by other means, in their own way, thus trying to justify Israel's current actions in the West Bank. Sell it to Bob. He is just gullible enough to believe it.

      Israel attempts to keep the lid on. It does not meddle in the day-to-day living of Jordan's now disenfranchised citizens.

      Good Lord, I hope you don't really believe this. If so, it proves you as dense as WiO.

      When questioned on your cryptic message on decision making and those in power you offer up

      Safe to say, you will not be one of the decision makers on the final partition of the disputed territories.

      which is bullshit since this was your initial statement

      allenSat Jan 04, 01:00:00 AM EST

      QuirkFri Jan 03, 10:30:00 PM EST
      I am not in the least confused as to whether Jordan is Palestine

      The world will sleep better knowing that. But you will not be making the decision. People in power will. Whether the outcome is to the liking of you and Dr. Pipes or WiO remains to be seen.


      Your statement was in response to my comment on Jordan and Palestine. It had nothing to do with the final resolution of the West Bank issue.

      It's obvious you make this shit up as you go along.

      .



      Delete
  25. If you have a little time this is a good read -

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2014/01/obamas_other_big_lie.html

    Recapping the biggest Obama lie of all -

    Deuce had it correct in one day, as I recall, calling it a forgery.....

    Report on our fraudulent 'President'.......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Matters of such import do not so easily go away.

      Delete
  26. Rat, old boy, you do appear to be.losing it. I used to have a fair amount if respect for your opinions but it appears boogie has got the best if you and.pushed you over the edge. I didn't see that coming for I've always felt the boob had a lessor grip on reality and has been often prone to implosion.

    shit happens I guess.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Rat, old boy, you do appear to be.losing it. I used to have a fair amount if respect for your opinions but it appears boogie has got the best if you and.pushed you over the edge. I didn't see that coming for I've always felt the boob had a lessor grip on reality and has been often prone to implosion.

    shit happens I guess.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why thankee, Ash..

      I will take that as the high compliment it was obviously intended to be.

      You my main man these days, Sir.......you were there to help when all the others left me floundering !!!!

      Blessed New Year to you, Sir.

      Delete
    2. I'm glad I could help. Now if we could only get rat to bury the hatchet and get back to his normal prolific posting we'd be good to go.

      Delete
    3. Deuce changes the rules, Rat still finds a way to shit the bed. And Blogger can't help. All he can do is delete the posts one by one.

      Delete

    4. Of course, Ms T.

      There are three options
      1. The posts are made, day after day, and Deuce or 'some one' has to spend time to delete them.
      2 The posts are made and left to stand
      3 Robert admits his past error.
      4 The Libertarian closes, because Robert will no admit his mistake...

      The Hegemony will not stop until it is satisfied with Robert's compliance.

      See you all, tomorrow!

      Delete
    5. Oh woe is you - bob offended you, nay, libeled your good name. Whippee fucking shit! It is the comments section of a google blog dude. Grow a back bone, stiffin your upper lip and take one for the team. He won't say uncle.

      Delete
    6. .

      Don't waste your time on him, Ash. He is a child. No one believes his bull. He stomps his little rat foot and pouts that his feelings are hurt. He tries to spread the blame for his actions by bringing Deuce into the conversation, Deuce, an adult who probably forgot about any insult real or imagined shortly after it was pasted.

      Rat is a small little fella who thinks he is making some kind of point when all he is really doing is making a fool of himself and irritating everyone he comes in contact with.

      He is a spoilt little tyke. You can't reason with a spoilt little tyke. They lack the maturity to understand.

      .

      Delete
    7. .

      To emphasize the 'small child' aspect, rat said

      There are three options
      1. The posts are made, day after day, and Deuce or 'some one' has to spend time to delete them.
      2 The posts are made and left to stand
      3 Robert admits his past error.
      4 The Libertarian closes, because Robert will no admit his mistake...


      thus making it obvious he has yet to master simple addition.

      Rat, is our own version of

      Spanish Inquisition

      :)

      .


      Delete
  28. PORTLAND, Ore. (CBS Seattle/AP) — One Oregon mother says that she is unable to afford health insurance for her and her 18-month-old son because it’s too expensive.

    The woman — who wishes to remain anonymous — tells KOIN-TV that she originally championed President Barack Obama’s signature health care law because she thought it would help people in her situation.

    “I’ve been a cheerleader for the Affordable Care Act since I heard about it and I assumed that it was designed for people in my situation,” she told KOIN. “I was planning on using the Affordable Care Act and I had done the online calculator in advance to make sure I was going to be able to afford it.”

    ReplyDelete
  29. Replies
    1. I read that. And scratch my head....

      Delete
    2. ...no adult supervision...

      Delete
  30. ATTENTION:

    If you have a cell phone or a computer and are concerned about your privacy, go to Rand Paul's face book page and sign on as a plaintiff in his class action lawsuit against the government and NSA for violating your constitutional rights.

    Several hundred thousand have signed on already.......Rand wants MILLIONS......

    I am getting to like this Rand Paul fellow.......my son voted for him by the way.....

    ReplyDelete
  31. She saw her loneliness in old age as the inevitable price of the mess she had made of her marriages. “I don’t like being alone,” she said in 1995, “but I’m getting much better at it. When you make a lot of mistakes, you always pay for them. Not at the time, not necessarily all at once, but you always do pay. And I pay by having to spend the rest of my life on my own.”
    She was appointed CBE in 2000.
    Elizabeth Jane Howard is survived by her daughter, Nicola.
    Elizabeth Jane Howard, born March 26 1923, died January 2 2014

    ReplyDelete

  32. Bad Luck - Same Family Killed By Assad In Syria - And By IDF Bombing In Gaza


    http://www.jihadwatch.org/2014/01/bad-luck-same-family-killed-in-syria-by-assad-and-by-idf-bombing-in-gaza.html

    Who says you only owe God one death?

    Jihadi propaganda, taking photo from Syria and posting it as being done by IDF in Gaza.......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is something you do not see everyday... ... ...other than on Palestinian TV.

      Delete
  33. Replies
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  34. Replies




    1. Age of Child Prostitutes in Israel Dropping

      Knesset study cites cases of 11-year-olds used for commercial sex that are among the several thousands of teenagers involved in prostitution.

      Vered Lee
      Haaretz

      http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/.premium-1.542420

      "Spengler's Laws": "When a nation is reduced to selling its women, it's lost."
      hat tip: allen

      Delete
  35. Replies




    1. Age of Child Prostitutes in Israel Dropping

      Knesset study cites cases of 11-year-olds used for commercial sex that are among the several thousands of teenagers involved in prostitution.

      Vered Lee
      Haaretz

      http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/.premium-1.542420

      "Spengler's Laws": "When a nation is reduced to selling its women, it's lost."
      hat tip: allen

      Delete
  36. Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  39. NORTH Korean leader Kim Jong Un sentenced his uncle to be eaten alive by a pack of 120 wild dogs in a punishment for treachery, Chinese media has reported.

    Jang Song Thaek, 67, along with five close aides, was allegedly stripped naked and thrown into a cage of dogs which had been starved for three days, according to the lurid details.


    Workers' Paradise doncha know.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is called:

      "Throwing the aides out with the uncle"

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
  40. "Our habit of constantly and zealously answering to any rabble has already done us a lot of harm and will do much more. ... We do not have to apologize for anything. We are a people as all other peoples; we do not have any intentions to be better than the rest. As one of the first conditions for equality we demand the right to have our own villains, exactly as other people have them. ... We do not have to account to anybody, we are not to sit for anybody's examination and nobody is old enough to call on us to answer. We came before them and will leave after them. We are what we are, we are good for ourselves, we will not change, nor do we want to.
    ___Jabotinsky

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
  41. http://www.commentarymagazine.com/article/the-closing-of-the-scientific-mind/

    The Closing of the Scientific Mind

    David Gelenter

    I was tempted to quote this in full, but opted for mercy, it being so long.

    However it is a really good article, and takes the scientists down a notch or ten.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Marijuana was scientifically proven to cause white women to seek black sausage, at least that story was used by apparatchik Harry Anslinger in the 1930s to convince Congress to outlaw cannabis so he could hire more DEA enforcement agents and expand his new empire.

      Delete
    2. Boy, were they dumb. Everyone knows American Indians are the best endowed (not talking trust fund).

      Delete
    3. Farmer BobSat Jan 04, 08:45:00 AM EST
      http://www.commentarymagazine.com/article/the-closing-of-the-scientific-mind/

      ...great read...

      Delete
  42. Óscar Omar Treviño Morales[1] (born January 26, 1974) is the current leader of the Mexican criminal organization known as Los Zetas and one of Mexico's most-wanted drug lords. He is the brother of former drug lord Miguel Treviño Morales.[2][3] The authorities believe he is the successor of his brother, who was arrested on July 15, 2013.

    Omar is allegedly responsible for several abductions and murders committed in Nuevo Laredo between 2005 and 2006 and the supply source for multi-kilogram loads of cocaine smuggled from Mexico to the United States.
    He is charged in a 2008 federal indictment in the U.S. District of Columbia, and

    the U.S. Department of State is currently offering a reward of up to $5 million
    USD for information leading to his arrest and/or conviction.

    ReplyDelete
  43. When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou; And when the LORD thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them: Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We have had the darnest time locating any Girgshites.

      Someone also wrote that no Moabite could enter the congregation of Israel. Ruth was a Moabite. She married Boaz. That union produced the line of David.

      What can I say? Don't believe everything you read. For anyone who missed it, the Tanakh is not a glowing endorsement of all things Jewish. Things are not always as they appear upon cursory examination.

      Delete
  44. Phil Robertson says you should marry a 16 year old. If you wait until she is 21 she is just a pick pocket.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jerry Lee Lewis, rock'n'roller, brother of Jimmy Saggart, did one better and married his 13 year old cuz. Great Balls of Fire!

      Delete
    2. I think they are cousins, T.

      Delete
  45. :)

    Hadn't thought of those two fellers in years.

    Swaggart did the very best "forgive me Lord" routine ever....

    I will go see if I can find it.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here's a somewhat dubbed over humorous take on the affair-

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czk3KqThfVE

      *****

      Yes, they are cousins.

      Delete
    2. By the way, I recall the prostitute in question saying Swaggart was really kinky......

      Delete









  46. Green Room



    Great news: Kim Jong-un’s uncle probably not executed by 120 hungry dogs. We think.

    posted at 2:18 pm on January 3, 2014 by Ed Morrissey






    Probably not. That rumor swept the Twittertubes of late, but it’s based on an unsourced report from one of Hong Kong’s least-reliable tabloids, which is somewhat akin to being one of Barack Obama’s least-credible promises. Max Fisher explains:


    If you’ve been on the Internet at all today, you’ve almost certainly seen the story claiming that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had his uncle executed last month by stripping him naked and feeding him to 120 hungry dogs. The story was first reported by a minor Hong Kong outlet on Dec. 12, was picked up by a Singaporean newspaper on Dec. 24 and since late Thursday has been sweeping through nearly every corner of the U.S. media. The only problem is that it’s probably – probably – not true.

    It was indeed a big surprise last month when South Korean intelligence revealed that Kim had purged his own uncle, Jang Song Thaek, which North Korea confirmed a couple of days later with a long screed in its state media. The highly public nature of the purge, which ended with Pyongyang announcing Jang’s execution, was totally unprecedented and legitimately shocking, which is a high bar for North Korea news.

    Crazy-sounding stories happen with some frequency in North Korea, where the government has a well-earned reputation for taking political punishments to medieval extremes. But there are five big reasons that this story just does not seem particularly plausible. The fact that the Western media have so widely accepted a story they would reject if it came out of any other country tells us a lot about how North Korea is covered — and how it’s misunderstood.

    Jang most likely met his end with a firing squad or some other more modern execution method, which makes him just as dead. Or maybe …


    “Bottom line is: unlikely but I can’t rule it out,” O’Carroll, whose NKNews site is known for its sober and careful coverage of North Korea, acknowledged. “While this one definitely feels exaggerated, who knows? With North Korea’s KCNA publishing films showing the destruction of effigies of [former South Korean President] Lee Myung-bak by hungry dogs last year, and of course publishing several cartoons depicting the gruesome death of the same president, at least parts of the story could be within the realm of true. Don’t forget the North Koreans even hosted competitions last year to think up the most gruesome way to kill ‘Traitor’ [Lee Myung-bak]; the prize? The winner could carry out that particular death sentence!”

    Be sure to read all of Fisher’s lengthy — and entertaining — essay.

    ReplyDelete
  47. ...glad I missed the "Administrator's" field day... And, no, I do not want to know.

    ReplyDelete