“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Musharraf to Karzai, on madrassas: "no terrorists here."

President General Pervez Musharraf has been outright chatty lately:

"Madaris (madrassas) could not be closed on Karzai`s demand" -Musharraf
Thursday September 28, 2006 (0214 PST)
The Pak Tribune reports

"President General Pervez Musharraf has said that in his meeting with president George W Bush and Afghan counterpart Hamid Karzai, he will present the ’realities’ about Taliban.
"As far as Afghan president’s demand of closing Madiris within Pakistan is concerned, it is totally rubbish. We will not close Madaris on his (Karzai) demands. The religious seminaries are not involved in terrorist activities," he observed this while addressing a press conference at Roosevelt hotel here Wednesday.
The afghan president’s accusations against Madaris are baseless. He should speak openly. How could we shut down 10,000 Madaris. The Madaris are absolutely not involved in terrorism."

Musharraf decided he may as well irritate the living shit out of the Canadians while he was at it:

Liberals Condemn Musharraf's Comments
Globe and Mail Update

"Interim Liberal leader Bill Graham condemned on Wednesday comments made by the President of Pakistan, who said Tuesday that Canadians should stop complaining about the number of casualties in the war in Afghanistan.

General Pervez Musharraf said in an interview aired on the CBC late Tuesday that his country has borne the brunt of the fighting in Afghanistan and that any country participating in the war should expect casualties.

"We have suffered 500 casualties, Canadians may have suffered four or five," he said in the interview. "You suffer two dead, and there's a cry and shout all around the base that there are coffins. Well, we've had 500 coffins."

In fact, 36 Canadians have been killed in the war in Afghanistan."


  1. My thoughts:
    1. Musharraf certainly seems to be having a good time on his book tour. After signing the peace deal, I guess he feels that this is some much needed personal time. Apparently peace reigns in Pakistan.
    2. Musharraf doesn't seem to have any problem with speaking his mind. Actually, this is something I admire in a leader these days. I'm tired of neutered men who say nothing. So, I don't have a problem with him telling the Canadians to "suck it up."
    3. I feel sorry for the Canucks. They have actually lost more men to friendly fire than kia by hostiles.
    4. Like the militias in Iraq, the Afghani border with Pakistan must become a non-issue and soon. If Musharraf wants to handle his internal affairs and feels confident doing so, that's his business...but jihadis crossing back and forth are intolerable and must be addressed one way or another. If he feels more comfortable with us doing it then fine, let him maintain his "cover" but he should not thwart us in any way. The Allies have a limited window of opportunity to do something about the Taleban. Half measures that maintain a status quo will not be long tolerated by a public beginning to see the effort as unrewarding.

  2. The buck stops with Bill. And the search for OBL goes on, coincidentally.

    Emir of Dubai

    Emir's a gusher for Bill & Hillary

  3. whit,

    Does President Bush believe anyone fooled by his so called mediation between Musharraf and Karsai?

    What is needed is arbitration. The US needs to find Pakistan non-compliant with whatever agreement was created in 2001 - thereby putting Pakistan on notice of impending action against the sanctuary of Waziristan.

  4. whit,

    Talking about the refreshment coming from a man who speaks his mind,

    Rekindling an Ancient Rage

    “We do not think that we should blacken the pages of this book [The Muqaddimah] with discussion of their [Christian] dogmas of unbelief. In general, they are well known. All of them are unbelief. This is clearly stated in the noble Koran. To discuss or argue those things with them is not up to us. It is for them to choose between conversion to Islam, payment of the poll tax, or death.”___ Ibn Khaldun

    I await the repudiation of Ibn Khaldun by "moderate" Muslims.


    For Ibn Khaldun

  6. Some of you do not read links. Avoid reading Allen's at your peril, as I have found him to be a serious thinker.

    This is what his 7:06 link says:

    ..." Khaldun is considered perhaps the greatest mind the Islamic world ever produced. Here is his opinion of Christians:

    We do not think that we should blacken the pages of this book [the Muqaddimah] with discussion of their [Christian] dogmas of unbelief. In general, they are well known. All of them are unbelief. This is clearly stated in the noble Koran. To discuss or argue those things with them is not up to us. It is for them to choose between conversion to Islam, payment of the poll tax, or death.

    Conversion, subjugation, or death. Three choices."

    Now while we are surrounded by useful fools, and have many who have forgotten their faith and religion, the Islamic world has not. They have no doubts and no qualms. There is no room in their religion for you, Christian, Jew or agnostic. You better believe that in no uncertain terms, Islam is the problem.

  7. There cannot be terrorist trained in the Madrass System, 'cause it is so extensive that combating it would be next to impossible, so we define the "problem" away.

    "... How could we shut down 10,000 Madaris. The Madaris are absolutely not involved in terrorism ..."

    There is no problem, we should no longer be concerned. But never fear, Pakistan is, according to buddy, safe, sevure and offers a good return on investments.

    Fascist dictatorships are often like that.

  8. Taliban Office in North Waziristan Open for Business

    "The Daily Times also reports the Pakistani government and military are no where to be found in Miranshah. The police and Army are absent, leaving the Taliban to fill the security vacuum."

    "The Taliban “established their offices to control the law and order situation in the agency," and 'the move has been welcomed by a number of officials including [Pakistani] military [officers].'"

    The response of NATO (those are the allies the US is counting on in Afghanistan) may be best captured by Dymphna at Ramadan 2006. Burn, Rinse, Repeat.

  9. Allen,
    Thanks for you 7:31 repost. As I scrolled down there they were, the Twin Towers, burning.

    I have believed since 9-11 that every news broadcast should begin with a clip of those buildings being hit, of their collaspe, and finally the ghostly twisted remains thrusting obliquely skyward.

    Images are powerful things. Nothing I have seen in my almost 59 years surpasses those of the WTC carnage. If one needs an explaination of why we are in a war of conquest with Islam they need look no further than those pictures.

  10. Unpopular war, think of this and enjoy your merlot this evening.

    What it Takes

  11. Habu,

    The memory that sticks in my head was of a a live feed of firemen inside the lobby of one of the towers. I think it was shot by a French company. You could here these loud thumps in the background. One fireman asks another, "What the fuck is that?"

  12. Why, habu, you know that playing those images would just slow down the "healing" of America.
    Can't have that.

    At the Fourth Rail, Bill Roggio documents the two newest advances by the enemy in the Mohammedan Wars. The Brussels insurrection and riots additionally exemplify the Mohammedans on the march.

    Where is the counterattack?
    Where are we on the advance and not playing defense?
    No where that I can see, but then I'm just an old desert rat. The machinations of the "Master Plan" may just be beyond my grasp, but I doubt it. Truly do doubt it.

    The only good news that I've seen:
    "... "Regardless of politics, we sympathize with many Americans' concern over derogatory comments about our country and its leadership recently made by Venezuela's president," said a 7-Eleven spokeswoman, who'd obviously been hearing from the public. "Chavez's position and statements over the past year or so didn't tempt us to stay with Citgo."

    That's about 2,100 gas stations off the books for Citgo, cutting total outlets to 11,000.

    The rest are likely to remain targets of the infuriated American public's wildcat boycott of Venezuelan crude. If so, it would be the first time in modern memory a spontaneous consumer boycott had such a commercial impact.

    Watching from Caracas, Rafael Ramirez, Venezuela's energy minister, said he was stunned at the "brusque" tone of 7-Eleven's announcement, calling it "bitter to swallow."

    He blamed sentiment in "middle America," not quite grasping that Chavez's words have consequences in the country that is Venezuela's leading oil customer. ...

    ... As Ramirez indicated, the reaction from the slow-to-anger American public was more than Venezuela expected.

    What Caracas is staring at, dumbfounded, is the realization that Americans can use their formidable buying power to tell Chavez something he cynically thought he'd never hear: that his oil was not all that necessary.

    That's bound to send a strong message to Caracas because Venezuela needs the $4 billion in U.S. yearly oil revenue to stay afloat and continue to throw its weight around on the world stage.

    Chavez has made hay for years about America's addiction to foreign oil. He's always been firm in the belief that Americans were soft and would never go without buying it. He was wrong. ..."

    When I was back east, with Jr, I couldn't believe folks were buying Citgo gas. I certainly did not, ahead of the curve, once again.


  13. Doug quoted the authors of the NIE at BC earlier. Link

    "The jihadists greatest vulnerability is that their ultimate political solution—an
    ultra-conservative interpretation of shari’a-based governance spanning the
    Muslim world is unpopular with the vast majority of Muslims."

    With no disrespect to Doug, how and by whom was it determined that Sharia was "unpopular with the vast majority of Muslims?" Has anyone other than the authors seen any evidence of this, of any sort, anywhere in the world, during the past five years?

    For the authors of the report to write such a thing is about as credible as the President's insistence that Islam is the Religion of Peace.

    Why is the United States having such difficulty getting a firm handle on events in Iraq?

  14. Because, allen, as Iraq the Model's father said "The Iraqi chose religion" in their Elections.

    They do not want or did not have the opportunity to elect, the secular representitive government that we desired for them.
    We continue to insist, they continue to demur.

  15. Allen,

    Because in this situation, religious tolerance = suicide?

  16. DR,
    Your sagacity once again buttresses the clarity of your thought. Healing es muy bueno.

    Feelings, nothing more than feelings,
    Trying to forget my feelings of love.
    Teardrops rolling down on my face,
    Trying to forget my feelings of love.

    Thud!!! "What the hell was that?"
    "Just some people escaping a burning they jump..that's the thud..thud..thud..

    OK I'm healed. Not..I want revenge, massive and unforgiving revenge. My soul craves to kill them.

  17. "With no disrespect to Doug, how and by whom was it determined that Sharia was "unpopular with the vast majority of Muslims?" Has anyone other than the authors seen any evidence of this, of any sort, anywhere in the world, during the past five years?"

    There are different degrees of Sharia, I would say. Taliban style government may work in tribal Pakistan, but the Arabs are unlikely to eat it up.

    However in practice, Al Qaeda is in the position of the Democratic Party. They hold little land and little power. With this in mind, they don't even have to implement their vision, all they have to do is attack our implementation of our own. This is the perenial advantage of a critic. And unfortunately, blowing shit up and complainin is a lot easier than building it.

    In this way, they feed off the anger regardless of whether the Jordanians or Palestinians would actually want what Al Qaeda would impose. The fact that they stand up to and kill Americans is their primary quality.

  18. The sad part is that saying Jordanians, Palestinians, and other populations generally approve of the deaths of Americans is actually controversial, because this concept is so alien to the attitude of our political leaders that surely everybody is reasonable and sees America for what it is. And, even importantly, noone truly wants war, that'd be unreasonable and uncivilized.

    They already think we're in a war, and point to myths and lies concerning genocide against the Palestinians and 500,000 dead Iraqi babies through sanctions. To them, Al Qaeda is just fighting back for Muslims, even if technically their program isn't something that the average Muslim would really want to have to deal with. Besides, even those who are aware of what Al Qaeda wants believe that ultimately they'll never have to deal with it - because someone will save them from such a possibility in the end anyway.

    Normally I'd say this is a good time to repeat what we told Musharraf, but unfortunately we've got our hands full. Another reason to increase the size of the military, the jackals are out in force, and only respect available force. Hard to project it when your current rotations are already stretching your military.

    To be sure, we've still got a large reserve of air and naval power, but a garrison of 25,000 in Afghanistan does not threaten the Pakistani Army, it is threatened by the much larger Pakistani Army.

  19. To sum up aspects of the above: Many Muslism are schizophrenic. They want to enjoy "democracy, whiskey, sexy," but out of pride and resentment, they also want to believe, even if it is untrue, that the natural wisdom of Islam and Sharia is naturally more profound and a panacea. Because it is Islamic, and by definition Islam is better and more wise than anything that is Western. Self-delusion over what actually consists of Sharia, and how many of their sins would be fatal under such a regime, is suppressed by Islamic nationalism.

  20. cutler; 1:42:02 PM

    re: we've still got a large reserve of air and naval power

    There is no question as to power; however, neither the Air Force nor the Navy has extra hands to spare. At this writing, the USAF has thousands of troops doing Army jobs, with the result that the Army is not well served and the Air Force is, thereby, compromised.

    The whole business of reserves is a myth indulged by the Pentagon. You may be sure the people in the field are not fooled by the happy talk.

    Across the board, all the services need manpower. Nevertheless, the USAF will reduce its active duty personnel by 40,000 during the next three years. If the USAF brass has its way, the Army will no longer be able to scavenge desperately needed field hands.

  21. Thanks for the input Allen, I didn't realize that the Army wasn't just moving people around internally, but also sucking manpower out of the Navy and Airforce to fill their own commitments.

    Personally, I'm about ready to call for Rumsfield's resignation myself. I don't mind mistakes, but a failure to adapt is even more dismaying.