“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."

Sunday, January 05, 2014

It is Past Time to Take Off the Kid Gloves With Saudi Arabia and Put On the Brass Knuckles

"...Kerry made the comments as he left Jerusalem for Jordan and Saudi Arabia to discuss his effort to broker peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

John Kerry: U.S. to help Iraq


JERUSALEM — Secretary of State John Kerry said Sunday that America would support Iraq in its fight against Al-Qaeda-linked militants who have overrun two cities in the country’s west, but said the U.S. wouldn’t send troops, calling the battle “their fight.”
Kerry made the comments as he left Jerusalem for Jordan and Saudi Arabia to discuss his effort to broker peace between Israel and the Palestinians. He’s had three days of lengthy meetings with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Kerry said some progress was made in what he described as ” very serious, very intensive conversations,” but key hurdles are yet to be overcome.
On Iraq, Kerry told reporters the U.S. was very concerned by the Al-Qaeda linked gunmen who have largely taken over Fallujah and Ramadi in an uprising that has been a blow to the Shiite-led government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.
The two cities are in Anbar province, a vast desert area on the borders with Syria and Jordan that was the heartland of the Sunni insurgency that rose up against American troops and the Iraqi government after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. Fallujah became notorious among Americans when insurgents in 2004 killed four American security contractors and hung their burned bodies from a bridge. Ramadi and other cities have remained battlegrounds as sectarian bloodshed has mounted, with Shiite militias killing Sunnis.
“We are very, very concerned about the efforts of al-Qaida and the Islamic State of Iraq in the Levant, which is affiliated with Al Qaeda, who are trying to assert their authority not just in Iraq, but in Syria,” Kerry said before leaving to visit Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah. “These are the most dangerous players in that region. Their barbarism against the civilians in Ramadi and Fallujah and against Iraqi security forces is on display for everyone in the world to see.”
He said the U.S. stands with the Iraqi government and others seeking to push back militants who are trying to destabilize the region and undermine a democratic process in Iraq. He said the U.S. was in contact with tribal leaders in Anbar who are standing up to the terrorists.
But he added: “This is a fight that belongs to the Iraqis. That is exactly what the president and the world decided some time ago when we left Iraq, so we are not obviously contemplating returning. We are not contemplating putting boots on the ground. This is their fight. … We will help them in their fight, but this fight, in the end, they will have to win and I am confident they can.”
On another issue roiling the Middle East, Kerry did not dismiss the idea that Iran could play a constructive role in finding a resolution to the civil war in Syria, even if Tehran is not a full participant in a conference on Syria later this month in Switzerland. The U.S. has objected to Iran’s participation because it hasn’t publicly endorsed the principles from the first Geneva peace conference on Syria in June 2012, calling for a transitional government in Syria, and is backing militias, including the Iranian-allied Lebanese Hezbollah group that has backed the troops of President Bashar Assad.
“If Iran doesn’t support that, it’s difficult to see how they are going to be a ministerial partner in the process,” Kerry said.
“Now could they contribute from the sidelines? Are there ways for them, conceivably, to weigh in? … It may be that there are ways that that could happen,” Kerry said.
America’s top diplomat arrived in the region on Thursday to try to keep Mideast peace talks on track amid sniping between Israel and the Palestinians.
“Now is not the time to get trapped in the sort of up and down of the day-to-day challenges,” Kerry said before leaving for Jordan. “We don’t have the luxury of dwelling on the obstacles that we all know could distract us from the goal. … What we need to do is lift our sights and look ahead and keep in mind the vision of what can come if we can move forward.”
Kerry is trying to nudge Abbas and Netanyahu closer to a peace pact that would establish a Palestinian state alongside Israel.
The talks have entered an intense phase aimed at getting the two sides to agree on a framework and provide guidance toward a final settlement. Reaching a deal on that framework is not expected on this trip, Kerry’s 10th to the region for peace talks.
“This is deeply steeped in history and each side has a narrative about their rights and their journey and the conflict itself,” Kerry said. “In the end, all of these core issues fit together like a mosaic. It’s a puzzle. … I cannot tell you when the last pieces may decide to fall into place or may fall on the floor and leave the puzzle unfinished.”


  1. There would be no al Qaeda without Saudi Arabia.

  2. ...“We are very, very concerned about the efforts of al-Qaida and the Islamic State of Iraq in the Levant, which is affiliated with Al Qaeda, who are trying to assert their authority not just in Iraq, but in Syria,” Kerry said before leaving to visit Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah. “These are the most dangerous players in that region. Their barbarism against the civilians in Ramadi and Fallujah and against Iraqi security forces is on display for everyone in the world to see.”

    It is way past time... but it is Saudi barbarism, from the very top on down.

  3. Theories on Israel, Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia Foreign Relations

    Anti-Hegemonic coalition is one of the most discussed subject in International Relations. In the Middle East the it is difficult to answer. "Which country is the "hegemonic power" in the reigon? The candidates are Israel, Turkey, Iran and Saudi Arabia if we consider today's global military and political structure.

    To begin with, Israel with its well developped military industry, utilization of technology and global political support seems a little bit further among the countries mentioned above. It has also powerful intelligence institutions like Mossad which can operate globally. Israel today has the ability to manufacture its own battle tanks "Merkava" and combat aircrafts planes like Kfir. Not only in military but also in other manufacturing industries and agriculture new technologies are adopted by many Israeli companies. In global issues it has also economical and political support from the USA. The negative aspect for Israel is energy resources. Today Israel lacks its own oil and gas resources and a great portion of these materials are being imported.

    Second country which can be most powerful rival to Israel is Turkey. Following the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, the Republic of Turkey today has strong industry and military. Many different raw materials and end-products can be produced today and the GDP of the country especially in the last 10 years increased drastically. Turkey has plans to produce it own battle tank "Altay" and "TAI" produces combat aircraft F-16s for a long time. Turkey like Israel lacks the oil and gas resources for its domestic industry use. Additionally, despite being a member of NATO, it also lacks a global political support.

    Iran and Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, has natural resources like oil and gas and they are the biggest exporters of these material. Iran comparing to S.Arabia seems like having a stronger military power. It has rocketry technology and able to manufacture ballistic missiles with small and mid range. Not like Israel and Turkey but it has also developing industry. Today Iran has its own brand cars for middle class usage. Saudi Arabia on the other hand also has military and political support from the USA.

    During the famous six-day war we have noticed an anti-hegemonic coalition between the Arab countries against Israel. Also same had happened against Turkey between Iran and Syria durign the Cold War especially. Middle East today has changing dynamics and the definition of “new coalitions" is very necessary.

    - from an anonymous source

  4. Christopher HitchensSun Jan 05, 08:48:00 AM EST

    Here is American society, attacked under open skies in broad daylight by the most reactionary and vicious force in the contemporary world, a force which treats Afghans and Algerians and Egyptians far worse than it has yet been able to treat us.

    The vaunted CIA and FBI are asleep, at best.

    The working-class heroes move, without orders and at risk to their lives, to fill the moral and political vacuum.

    The moral idiots, meanwhile, like Falwell and Robertson and Rabbi Lapin,
    announce that this clerical aggression is a punishment for our secularism.

    And the governments of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia,
    hitherto considered allies on our 'national security' calculus,
    prove to be the most friendly to the Taliban and Al Qaeda.

    Here was a time for the Left to demand a top-to-bottom house-cleaning of the state and of our covert alliances,
    a full inquiry into the origins of the defeat, and a resolute declaration in favor of a fight to the end for secular and humanist values:

    a fight which would make friends of the democratic and secular forces in the Muslim world.

    And instead, the near-majority of 'Left' intellectuals started sounding like Falwell,
    and bleating that the main problem was Bush's legitimacy.

    So I don't even muster a hollow laugh when this pathetic faction says that I,
    and not they, are in bed with the forces of reaction.

    ―, Christopher Hitchens and His Critics: Terror, Iraq, and the Left

  5. Karen Elliott HouseSun Jan 05, 08:53:00 AM EST

    “The United States has a rich history of sticking with losers too long.”

    ― Karen Elliott House, On Saudi Arabia: Its People, Past, Religion, Fault Lines - and Future


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

    Farmer O-Bob-ma

  7. Tell Me Again, Why Did My Friends Die In Iraq?

    The proof of how pointless the entire endeavour was — if you even needed more — came Friday morning, with a report from Liz Sly in the Washington Post.

    "At the moment, there is no presence of the Iraqi state in Fallujah," a local journalist who asked not to be named because he fears for his safety told Sly. “The police and the army have abandoned the city, al-Qaeda has taken down all the Iraqi flags and burned them, and it has raised its own flag on all the buildings.”

    Fallujah has fallen, and the same scenario is about to happen in the even-larger city of Ramadi.

    It shouldn't be such a surprise the place my friends fought for is falling back into civil war. I shouldn't be surprised when the same thing happens in Afghanistan.

    1. Bremmer for Supreme Commander!

    2. Books: My Year in Iraq: The Struggle to Build a Future of Hope

      Education: Harvard Business School

      The Best and The Brightest!

      ...and he had good hair, a plus in W's book.

      Did Brownie have good hair, 'Rat?

    3. Was he really only there for a year?

      Seemed like forever.

      I'd call his shit, Wretchard would defend his actions.

    4. The die was cast when we put Fallujah I on hold, for political reasons.

      I protested, BC defended.

    5. Another early indicator that we were headed for a Vietnam Style outcome was when we needlessly sacrificed a Marines life in a very long firefight with a single sniper in an ammunition filled mosque.

      I commented that he could have easily been taken out in a second by a rocket firing Apache.

      Trish said there was some reason for doing otherwise, and sacrificing that Marine.

      Lifer Mentality.

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. Put on the brass knuckles?

    Perhaps we really should nuke the rock then?


    Place is the richest shithole on earth.......


    Perhaps Iraq will follow Syria and finally divide itself up........which is what we should have done with another God forsaken land in the first place......just as Miss T, Joe Biden, and Farmer Bob suggested all along......the only three long term strategic thinkers in USA........

    1. "Perhaps we really should nuke the rock then?"

      ...always been a popular option around here.


    2. “First Afghanistan, now Iraq.

      So who's next?
      Syria? North Korea? Iran?

      Where will it all end?'
      If these illegal interventions are permitted to continue, the implication seems to be, pretty soon,
      horror of horrors, no murderously repressive regimes might remain.”

      ― Daniel Kofman, A Matter of Principle: Humanitarian Arguments for War in Iraq

    3. Humanitarianism is most definitely spreading throughout the ME.

      Thanks to the US!
      (of America)

      US liberated ME !

    4. Almost sounds like a contradiction in terms.

      Hell, life's just an experiment, let's see what happens.


  10. While there has been internal debate and some fluctuation in US policy, much exaggerated in discussion here,
    it has been generally true that US support for Israel's militarization and expansion reflected the estimate of its power in the region.

    The effect has been to turn Israel into a militarized state completely dependent on US aid,
    willing to undertake tasks that few can endure, such as participation in Guatemalan genocide.

    For Israel, this is a moral disaster and will eventually become a physical disaster as well.
    For the Palestinians and many others, it has been a catastrophe, as it may sooner or later be for the entire world

    ― Noam Chomsky

    1. Give us what we want and demand or we blow up Western Civilization ...
      So sayith the Israeli…

      Israel threatened Henry Kissinger and Richard Nixon with the use of nuclear weapons on the third day of the 1973 Yom Kippur War, successfully blackmailing the White House to airlift much needed supplies;
      hat tip: mat
      hat tip: allen

    2. AnonymousSat Jan 04, 02:46:00 PM EST

      Give us what we want and demand or we blow Western Civilization ...
      So sayith the Israeli…

      • How Israel threatened Henry Kissinger and Richard Nixon with the use of nuclear weapons on the third day of the 1973 Yom Kippur War, successfully blackmailing the White House to airlift much needed supplies;


      The Israeli "Nuclear Alert" of 1973: Deterrence and Signalling in Crisis

      Read the entire report of 64 pages. Israel did not activate its nuclear assests nor did it threaten to do so. You have introduced more anti-Jewish sewage onto the followers of this site.

  11. "Did Brownie have good hair, 'Rat?"


    1. Brownie was a crook, Doug.
      He was also inept and incompetent.

      Which may be why he became known as crook.


  12. For Allen -

    January 5, 2014
    Remembering Phil Everly who died this weekend
    Silvio Canto, Jr.

    If you love pop music, and I do, then you have to appreciate how The Everly Brothers influenced the music that we grew up listening to.

    Just listen to John Lennon & Paul McCartney sing "If I fell" or "I'll be back" or a few others. What you hear is John and Paul singing just like Don & Phil, or the harmonies that they used to hear as aspiring musicians in Liverpool radio. Like so many of the British groups, they learned to sing listening to those tight harmonies recorded by those two Kentucky brothers dominating the US charts.

    As Scott Johnson wrote, another political blogger who loves pop music, Don & Phil Everly brought "....the close harmony singing of traditional country music into the mainstream of American popular music."

    Phil Everly died at age 74 and you can hear his legacy every time that you hear a duo on the radio:

    "With songs like "Wake Up Little Susie," "Bye Bye Love," "Cathy's Clown," "All I Have to Do Is Dream" and "When Will I Be Loved?," written by Phil Everly, the brothers were consistent hitmakers in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

    They won over country, pop and even R&B listeners with a combination of clean-cut vocals and the rockabilly strum and twang of their guitars.

    They were also models for the next generations of rock vocal harmonies for the Beatles, Linda Ronstadt, Simon and Garfunkel and many others who recorded their songs and tried to emulate their precise, ringing vocal alchemy. The Everly Brothers were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in its first year, 1986.

    The Everlys brought tradition, not rebellion, to their rock 'n' roll. Their pop songs reached teenagers with Appalachian harmonies rooted in gospel and bluegrass. Their first full-length album, "The Everly Brothers" in 1958, held their first hits, but the follow-up the same year, "Songs Our Daddy Taught Us," was a quiet collection of traditional and traditional-sounding songs.

    They often sang in close tandem, with Phil Everly on the higher note and the brothers' voices virtually inseparable. That was part of a long lineage of country "brother acts" like the Delmore Brothers, the Monroe Brothers and the Louvin Brothers. In an interview in November, Phil Everly said: "We'd grown up together, so we'd pronounce the words the same, with the same accent. All of that comes into play when you're singing in harmony."

    Paul Simon, whose song "Graceland" includes vocals by Phil and Don Everly, said in an email on Saturday morning: "Phil and Don were the most beautiful sounding duo I ever heard. Both voices pristine and soulful. The Everlys were there at the crossroads of country and R&B.

    They witnessed and were part of the birth of rock and roll."

    Yes, it's hard to talk about rock history without devoting a good section to Phil & Don Everly.

    RIP Phil Everly.

    1. ""Wake Up Little Susie," "Bye Bye Love," "Cathy's Clown," "All I Have to Do Is Dream" and "When Will I Be Loved?,""

      ...nuff said.

    2. Haven't we all been Cathy's Clown at least once?

    3. Crazy MaMa least once... :-) ...brought low by the gruesome trouser worm...


  13. Mia Love (R-Utah)

    In late 2012, polls showed that Love, the congressional candidate who brought down the house at the Republican National Convention, looked like a strong bet to defeat incumbent Rep. Jim Matheson, a Democrat in Utah’s Fourth District. Her loss was a stinging blow to the GOP.

    This time around, Matheson isn’t running, and the Republicans are confident that Love, a 38- year-old mayor of Saratoga Springs, who is also black and Mormon, can pick up the seat. She lost narrowly last time, and, this time around, observers say the candidate is more experienced and will have smarter messaging. The former city councilwoman is emphasizing a pro-business, limited government agenda likely to resonate in Republican Utah.

    The National Republican Congressional Committee has launched a new recruitment and promotion effort aimed at women called Project GROW. “Thanks to our women members leading the effort with the NRCC’s Project GROW, we have more women in competitive races than ever before,” said the organization’s spokeswoman, Andrea Bozek

    Read more:


    It's the difference between the USA and Israel on the one hand, and Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the other shitholes on the other.

    Go Mia Love !!

    1. The Dems saw a charismatic black make a mesmerizing speech and signed on.

      The Pubs see a dynamic conservative black woman and...

      Niki Haley, same same.

      Damn Squaw!

  14. A new wave of bombings hit Iraq's capital, Baghdad, killing at least 20 people Sunday, officials said, the latest assault by militants who have been fighting Iraqi security forces and allied tribes in country's west.

    The deadliest attack took place in Baghdad's Shiite northern Shaab neighborhood, when two parked car bombs exploded simultaneously near a restaurant and a tea house. Officials say those blasts killed 10 people and wounded 26.

    Authorities said that a parked car bomb ripped through in capital's Shiite eastern district of Sadr City, killing five and wounding 10. Another bombing killed three civilians and wounded six in a commercial area in the central Bab al-Muadham neighborhood, officials said. Two other bombings killed two civilians and wounded 13, police said.

    Medical officials confirmed the causality figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information.

    The attacks come as Iraqi security forces are besieging two key cities country's western Anbar province after they were taken over by militants from al-Qaida's local branch, known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant. Clashes have been taking place since Monday in Anbar's provincial capital, Ramadi, and nearby Fallujah between al-Qaida militants and pro-government Sunni tribesmen. The Baghdad bombings could be seen as an attempt by militants to distract security forces.

    Earlier on Sunday, a senior Iraqi military commander said that it will take a few days to fully dislodge al-Qaida-linked fighters from two key western cities.

    Lt. Gen. Rasheed Fleih, who leads the Anbar Military Command, told the state television Sunday that "two to three days" are needed to push the militants out of Fallujah and parts of Ramadi. Fleih added that pro-government Sunni tribes are leading the operations while the army only is offering aerial cover and logistics on the ground. He didn't elaborate on the operations.

    "The quiet and safe life that is sought by the Anbaris will not be completely restored before few hours or two to three days, God willing," Fleih said.

    1. Baghdad Bob.....the Quirk of Iraq.....


    2. Both men who can reorder reality through voice command......

    3. Christopher HitchensSun Jan 05, 10:18:00 AM EST

      Kurdistan. Having endorsed the covert policy of supporting a Kurdish revolt in northern Iraq between 1974 and 1975, with ‘deniable’ assistance also provided by Israel and the Shah of Iran, Kissinger made it plain to his subordinates that the Kurds were not to be allowed to win, but were to be employed for their nuisance value alone.

      They were not to be told that this was the case, but soon found out when the Shah and Saddam Hussein composed their differences, and American aid to Kurdistan was cut off.

      Hardened CIA hands went to Kissinger ... for an aid programme for the many thousands of Kurdish refugees who were thus abruptly created....

      The apercu of the day was: ‘foreign policy should not he confused with missionary work.’
      Saddam Hussein heartily concurred.

      East Timor. The day after Kissinger left Djakarta in 1975, the Armed Forces of Indonesia employed American weapons to invade and subjugate the independent former Portuguese colony of East Timor.

      Isaacson gives a figure of 100,000 deaths resulting from the occupation, or one-seventh of the population, and there are good judges who put this estimate on the low side.

      Kissinger was furious when news of his own collusion was leaked, because as well as breaking international law the Indonesians were also violating an agreement with the United States....

      Monroe Leigh ... pointed out this awkward latter fact. Kissinger snapped:
      ‘The Israelis when they go into Lebanon—when was the last time we protested that?’

      A good question, even if it did not and does not lie especially well in his mouth.

      It goes on and on and on until one cannot eat enough to vomit enough.

      ― Christopher Hitchens

    4. Christopher HitchensSun Jan 05, 10:18:00 AM EST
      Kurdistan. Having endorsed the covert policy of supporting a Kurdish revolt in northern Iraq between 1974 and 1975, with ‘deniable’ assistance also provided by Israel and the Shah of Iran, Kissinger made it plain to his subordinates that the Kurds were not to be allowed to win, but were to be employed for their nuisance value alone.

      It is a well written if somewhat desultory paragraph by one of the greats. But it is merely an opinion because it (and the rest of the "quote") has no source material. In that regard, it might as well be a short story.

      Scores of other conspiracists all salivating hungrily on Google will make use of this reference, investing it in the cache of truth. Before you can say "Guy", the quote will acquire the mantel of a reviewed primary source.

      Hitchens had the occasional flaw of letting his hatred for Kissinger override his otherwise finely tuned editorial instincts. When called on this, his pat response was, “Let him sue me”. Kissinger did not oblige.


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

  15. God willing......Too bad we can’t impeach God.

  16. John McCain and Lindsey Graham Want to invade Falluja Yet Again
    By Juan Cole | Jan. 5, 2014 |

    There were conflicting reports on Sunday morning about whether the Iraqi government and its allied tribal levies had regained control of the western city of Falluja, which had fallen to the Islamic…

    There were conflicting reports on Sunday morning about whether the Iraqi government and its allied tribal levies had regained control of the western city of Falluja, which had fallen to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS or ISIL) on Saturday. What was not in doubt was that some in the leadership of the GOP have a screw loose when it comes to foreign affairs.

    Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) tried to blame President Obama for the al-Qaeda presence in Falluja, saying that he had been wrong to withdraw all US troops from Iraq in December of 2011.

    It is really rich that these two should try to blame Obama for the problem that they caused. There was no al-Qaeda in Iraq in 2002 and the Iraqi government would not have allowed such a thing. McCain and Graham decided to invade Iraq with no justification in international law, overthrow its government, dissolve its army, fire most Sunni Arabs from their jobs, and dissolve most of the state-owned industries, creating massive unemployment. What did they expect to happen? In contrast, Obama opposed the Iraq War when he was in the Illinois Senate.


  17. {...}
    McCain and Graham are wrong on this matter for the following reasons:

    1. The Iraqi parliament rejected a Status of Forces Agreement with the US on George W. Bush’s watch and refused to reconsider. Without a SOFA, as Sen. McCain knows very well, US troops could not engage in combat without risking being brought to Iraqi courts and charged with war crimes.

    The only way Obama could have kept troops in Iraq would have been to invade the country all over again, abolish parliament and install a puppet government that would invite the US to stay. Actually, that is exactly what Leonid Brezhnev did in Afghanistan. How did that work out for the Soviet Union? In fact, McCain pursued in the 1980s more or less allied with Muslim holy warriors against the Soviets in Afghanistan, contributing the the rise of . . . al-Qaeda. So we have seen this picture.

    2. The Islamic State of Iraq and other extremist Sunni fundamentalists controlled city quarters of Falluja while the American troops were there! The US invaded Falluja twice directly in 2004 and then conducted a proxy campaign there in 2007-8 using tribal levies (the “Awakening Councils”) a third time! So the US military presence in Iraq 2003-2011 did not crush the Sunni extremists in Falluja, which they had to keep invading over and over again, as is proved by the way the extremists were back in control of the city just this past weekend. If a small contingent of US troops were in Iraq now, what would they do? Could they even tell which Iraqis in Falluja were the bad guys?

    3. Sen. McCain has never comprehended that the Iraqis did not want US troops in their country. Many Iraqis who don’t even like Sunni extremists would be perfectly happy to join them in fighting US troops were they again to be on the ground in Iraq. They’re just not that into you, Lindjohn. A US troop presence in a place like Iraq is radicalizing and destabilizing, not a solution to the problems.

    The two maintained that US power has declined in the Middle East in the past 5 years. But if we went back to 2007 we would find the US mired in two quagmires, in Afghanistan and Iraq, its forces over-extended and doing 3 and 4 18-month rotations. It was the bogged down US in 2007 that was weak and irrelevant. No one in the Middle East cared what W. thought.

    They also wanted a direct US intervention in Syria, apparently because their Iraq adventure went so well. There is no prospect that the US could intervene effectively in Syria. Even if it could, do they want to put the Syrian rebels in power in Damascus? Do they even realize that one major rebel group in Syria is — you guessed it– the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the same “al-Qaeda affiliate” they want to sent troops in to fight in Falluja!

    Some people think war is the answer to every problem. It isn’t even the answer to most problems.

  18. It was the answer to getting the Iraqis out of Kuwait......but Bush One stopped at that point, following the UN mandate.....


    1. “If you want to judge if a party is a Lebanese enough,
      let me say we take up arms and fight against the occupation of our land, is that Lebanese enough?”

      ― Sayed Hassan Nasrallah, Voice of Hezbollah: The Statements of Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah

    2. It was the compassionate thing to do.

      The Tree Stands,

      The Apple Falls...

    3. Niccolo MachiavelliSun Jan 05, 10:24:00 AM EST

      Whoever conquers a free town and does not demolish it commits a great error and may expect to be ruined himself.

      Niccolo Machiavelli


  19. “One of the hardest parts of my job is to connect Iraq to the war on terror. ”

    ― George W. Bush


    1. “Murdering people in order to prolong the age of your state,
      is like building a wall in front of your eyes to broaden your vision.”

      ― Chia A. Abdulkarim

    2. Send Paul Bremmer to be Viceroy.

      Harvard Grad.

      Good Hair.

      Wears Cool Boots.

  20. Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) tried to blame President Obama for the al-Qaeda presence in Falluja, saying that he had been wrong to withdraw all US troops from Iraq in December of 2011.

    So we're supposed to ROLL BACK the al-Qaeda affiliated rebels in Iraq, a Shia-dominated state, but we're supposed to ARM the al-Qaeda affiliated rebels in Syria, a Shia-dominated state. Got all that?


      How Perpetual War Became U.S. Ideology

      James Joyner

      The United States has found itself in a seemingly endless series of wars over the past two decades.

      Despite frequent opposition by the party not controlling the presidency and often that of the American public, the foreign policy elite operates on a consensus that routinely leads to the use of military power to solve international crises.

    2. Please don’t confuse Abbbadabba with facts.

  21. Iran ready to help Iraq fight al-Qaeda: Iranian cmdd.

    Sun Jan 5, 2014 2:49PM GMT

    Deputy Chief of Staff of Iran's Armed Forces Brigadier General Mohammad Hejazi says if necessary, the Islamic Republic is prepared to give military equipment to Iraq to fight al-Qaeda.

    Asked about some Iraqi media reports that Baghdad is seeking help from Iran and the US to assist its operations against al-Qaeda, Hejazi said on Sunday that no official request has been made on Iran in this regard.

    “Nothing has been discussed about a joint operation against Takfiri terrorists, but if Iraqis need equipment and consultation, we will help them,” the Iranian commander added.

    Certain Iraqi media had earlier claimed that the United States and Iran are both contributing troops to fight al-Qaeda in Iraq.

    The Iraqi cities of Fallujah and Ramadi have been the scene of deadly clashes between security forces and al-Qaeda-affiliated militants over the past days.

    According to security officials, the fighting left more than 100 people dead in the two cities on Friday.

    The violence broke out on December 30, 2013, when the army removed an anti-government protest camp in Ramadi. Authorities said the camp was used as "headquarters for the leadership of al-Qaeda."

    Iraq Defense Ministry spokesman, Mohammed al-Askari, said in a statement on December 23 that Iraqi forces had destroyed two camps belonging to an al-Qaeda-linked militant group in the western province of Anbar.


  22. The Model for Iraq was Ireland, 1692, Divide and Conquer as Imperial Rules
    By Conn Hallinan
    Global Research

    Investigative journalist Seymour Hersh’s revelations that the Israeli government is encouraging Kurdish separatism in Iraq, Iran, and Syria should ring a bell for anyone who has followed the long history of English imperial ambitions.

    It is no surprise that the Israelis should be using the tactic of “divide and conquer,” the cornerstone policy of an empire that dominated virtually every continent on the globe save South America.

    The Jewish population of British-controlled Palestine was, after all, victim to exactly the same kind of ethnic manipulation that the Israeli government is presently attempting in Northern Iraq.

    Following the absorption of the Ottoman Empire after World War I, the British set about shoring up their rule by the tried and true strategy of pitting ethnic group against ethnic group, tribe against tribe, and religion against religion.

    When British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour issued his famous 1917 Declaration guaranteeing a “homeland” for the Jewish people in Palestine, he was less concerned with righting a two thousand year old wrong than creating divisions that would serve growing British interests in the Middle East.

    Sir Ronald Storrs, the first Governor of Jerusalem, certainly had no illusions about what a “Jewish homeland” in Palestine meant for the British Empire:
    “It will form for England,” he said, “a little loyal Jewish Ulster in a sea of potentially hostile Arabism.”

    Storrs’ analogy was no accident. Ireland was where the English invented the tactic of divide and conquer, and where the devastating effectiveness of using foreign settlers to drive a wedge between the colonial rulers and the colonized made it a template for worldwide imperial rule.

    Divide and Conquer Revisited

    Former Israeli Prime Ministers Ariel Sharon and Menachem Begin normally take credit for creating the “facts on the ground” policies that have poured more than 420,000 settlers into the Occupied Territories.

    But they were simply copying Charles I, the English King, who in 1609 forcibly removed the O’Neill and O’Donnell clans from the north of Ireland, moved in 20,000 English and Scottish Protestants, and founded the Plantation of Ulster.

    The “removal” was never really meant to cleanse Ulster of the Irish. Native labor was essential to the Plantation’s success and within 15 years more than 4,000 native Irish tenants and their families were back in Ulster. But they lived in a land divided into religious castes, with the Protestant invaders on top and the Catholic natives on the bottom.

    Protestants were awarded the “Ulster privilege” which gave them special access to land and lower rents, and also served to divide them from the native Catholics. The “Ulster Privilege” is not dissimilar to the kind of “privilege” Israeli settlers enjoy in the Territories today, where their mortgages are cheap, their taxes lower and their education subsidized.

    The Protestant privileges were a constant sore point with the native Irish; although in fact, most Protestants were little better off than their Catholic neighbors. Rents were uniformly onerous, regardless of religion.

    Indeed, there were numerous cases where Protestants and Catholics united to protest exorbitant rents, but in virtually every case, the authorities successfully used religion and privilege to split such alliances. The Orange Order, the organization most responsible for sectarian politics in the North today, was originally formed in 1795 to break a Catholic-Protestant rent strike.


    1. The Model for Iraq was Ireland, 1692, Divide and Conquer as Imperial Rules
      By Conn Hallinan
      Global Research,

      Ireland as Imperial Laboratory

      The parallels between Israel and Ireland are almost eerie, unless one remembers that the latter was the laboratory for British colonialism.
      As in Ulster, Israeli settlers in the Occupied Territories have special privileges that divide them from Palestinians (and other Israelis as well).
      As in Ireland, Israeli settlers rely on the military to protect them from the “natives.”

      And as in Northern Ireland, there are political organizations, like the National Religious Party and the Moledet Party, which whip up sectarian hatred, and keep the population divided.
      The latter two parties both advocate the forcible transfer of all Arabs Palestinians and Israelis alike to Jordan and Egypt

      Prior to the Ulster experiment, the English had tried any number of schemes to tame the restive Irish and build a wall between conquerors and conquered. One set of laws, the 1367 Statutes of Kilkenny, forbade “gossiping” with the natives. All of them failed. Then the English hit on the idea of using ethnicity, religion, and privilege to construct a society with built-in divisions.

      It worked like a charm.

      The divisions were finally codified in the Penal Laws of 1692, divisions that still play themselves out in the streets of Belfast and Londonderry.
      Besides denying Catholics any civil rights (and removing those rights from Protestants who intermarried with them), the Laws blocked Catholics from signing contracts, becoming lawyers, or hiring more than two apprentices.
      In essence, they insured that Catholics would remain poor, powerless, and locked out of the modern world.

      The laws were, in the words of the great English jurist Edmund Burke,
      “A machine of wide and elaborate contrivance and as well fitted for the oppression, impoverishment and degradation of a people as ever proceeded from the perverted ingenuity of man.”

      Once the English hit on the tactic of using ethnic and religious differences to divide a population, the conquest of Ireland became a reality. Within 250 years, that formula would be transported to India, Africa, and the Middle East.


    2. The Model for Iraq was Ireland, 1692, Divide and Conquer as Imperial Rules
      By Conn Hallinan
      Global Research,

      Sometimes populations were splintered by religions, as with Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims in India. Sometimes societies were divided by tribes, as with the Ibos and Hausa in Nigeria. Sometimes, as in Ireland, foreign ethnic groups were imported and used as a buffer between the colonial authorities and the colonized.

      That is how large numbers of East Indians ended up in Kenya, South Africa, British Guyana, and Uganda.

      It was “divide and conquer” that made it possible for an insignificant island in the north of Europe to rule the world. Division and chaos, tribal, religious and ethnic hatred, were the secret to empire. Guns and artillery were always in the background in case things went awry, but in fact, it rarely came to that.

      It would appear the Israelis have paid close attention to English colonial policy because their policies in the Occupied Territories bear a distressing resemblance to Ireland under the Penal Laws.

      The Israeli Knesset recently prevented Palestinians married to Arab Israelis from acquiring citizenship, a page lifted almost directly from the 1692 laws.

      Israeli human rights activist Yael Stein called the action “racist,” and Knesset member Zeeva Galon said it denied “the fundamental right of Arab Israelis to start families.”
      Even the U.S. is uncomfortable with the legislation. “The new law,” said U.S. State Department spokesman Phillip Reeker, “singles out one group for different treatment than others.”

      Which, of course, was the whole point.

      Imperial Blowback

      As the penal laws impoverished the Irish, so do Israeli policies impoverish the Palestinians and keep them an underdeveloped pool of cheap labor. According to the United Nations, unemployment in the West Bank and Gaza is over 50 percent, and Palestinians are among the poorest people on the planet.

      Any efforts by the Palestinians to build their own independent economic base are smothered by a network of walls, settler-exclusive roads and checkpoints. It is little different than British imperial policy in India, which systematically dismantled the Indian textile industry so that English cloth could clothe the sub-continent without competition.

      Divide and conquer was 19th and early 20th century colonialism’s single most successful tactic of domination. It was also a disaster, one which still echoes in civil wars and regional tensions across the globe. This latter lesson does not appear to be one the Israelis have paid much attention to. As a system of rule, division and privilege may work in the short run, but over time it engenders nothing but hatred. These polices, according to Lt. Gen. Moshe Yaalon, foment “terror,” adding, “In tactical decisions, we are operating contrary to our strategic interests.”

      The policy also creates divisions among Israelis. Empires benefit only a few, and always at the expense of the majority. While for example the Sharon government spends $1.4 billion a year holding on to the territories, 27 percent of Israeli children are officially designated “poor,” social services have been cut.


    3. The Model for Iraq was Ireland, 1692, Divide and Conquer as Imperial Rules
      By Conn Hallinan
      Global Research,

      By playing the Kurds against Syria and Iran, the Israelis may end up triggering a Turkish invasion of Kurdish Iraq, touching off a war that could engulf the entire region. That Israel would emerge from such a conflict unscathed is illusion.
      Divide and conquer fails in the long run, but only after it inflicts stupendous damage, engendering hatreds that still convulse countries like Nigeria, India and Ireland. In the end it will fail to serve even the interests of the power that uses it. England kept Ireland divided for 800 years, but in the end, it lost.

      The Israelis would do well to remember the Irish poet Patrick Pearse’s eulogy over the grave of the old Fenian revolutionary, Jeremian “Rossa” O’Donovan:
      “I say to my people’s masters, beware.
      Beware of the thing that is coming.
      Beware of the risen people who shall take what yea would not give.”

      Conn Hallinan is a foreign policy analyst for Foreign Policy in Focus and a Lecturer in Journalism at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

  23. The Religious Freedom Coalition advertising campaign to expose the evils of Saudi Arabia is an ongoing effort. Our current ad details the arrests of Ethiopian Christian guest workers in Saudi Arabia for the “crime” of praying in private.

    William J. Murray, the chairman of the Religious Freedom Coalitions said: “We are targeting individual congressional districts to gain support in congress for demanding more accountability for Saudi Arabia. By 2015 the USA will produce more oil than Saudi Arabia and we no longer need to turn a blind eye to the killings, the torture and inhumanity of the Saudi royals. Let them peddle their oil elsewhere.”

    The ads, which are placed in key congressional districts, direct readers to an Internet site where they learn more about the persecution of Christians in Saudi Arabia. Once at the Internet site, a free fax can be sent to the reader’s congressman asking him to speak out against the brutality of the royal family which operates the criminal enterprise known as Saudi Arabia.


    1. Christians Discriminated Against by Israel

      By Donald Neff
      Former Israel Bureau Chief for Time Magazine
      Excerpted from Fifty Years of Israel

      On Dec. 29, 1977, Christians in Israel and the occupied territories protested a new law passed by the Israeli parliament making it illegal for missionaries to proselytize Jews.

      Protestant churches charged that the law had been
      “hastily pushed through parliament during the Christmas period when Christians were busily engaged in preparing for and celebrating their major festival.”

      The law made missionaries liable to five years’ imprisonment for attempting to persuade people to change their religion, and three years’ imprisonment for any Jew who converted.

      The United Christian Council complained that the law could be
      “misused in restricting religious freedom in Israel.”

  24. "Religious Proselytizing" – A Smear Term to Silence Christianity

    by Rev. Ted Pike

    The term "religious proselytizing" is being used to prejudice the public against Christian evangelism.

    It conjures up images of Moonies in airports or religious fanatics ranting on street corners.
    The very sound of the term (similar to "parasitizing") is threatening.
    Most people don't know what the word means, but of one thing they are sure: they are against it.
    Where has the phrase come from?

    It is used most frequently in Israel, becoming common with the passage on December 25, 1977,
    of Israel's infamous "anti-missionary" law.

    This is a statute that decrees a prison term of up to five years for any gentile attempting to proselytize a Jew away from his faith.

    Proponents say this is vital to the survival of Israel because so many young Jews are being seduced away from the fold, largely by Christianity. The severity of the sentence, they argue, is warranted because such theft of Jewish souls can lead to genocide, or the extinction of a race.

    Yet Judaism resents the encroachment of Christianity not just in Israel, but also throughout the world.

    With 40% of the American Jewish boys marrying gentile girls, and the Jewish birthrate not keeping up with the rest of humanity, Jewish leaders are desperate that the physical and spiritual unity of the Jewish race be preserved.

    Christianity: Keep Out

    Considering such a mindset against Christianity, we may understand why Billy Graham and other Christian evangelists have never held a crusade in Israel. Graham has held many meetings throughout the Soviet bloc and Russia.

    Yet not in Israel.

  25. Off Topic:

    Can you imagine skiing in Colorado on slopes shared with thousands of stoned snow boarders?

    1. :) And, the difference would be?

    2. I don’t know. I can remember me and maryjane trying to pull onto Rt. 22 in north Jersey mesmerized by flopping wind shield wipers and snowflakes attacking from all directions.


    3. It has been that way for years.
      A change in the Law does not change 'reality'.

      The mental state of the skiers will not change, because of the legislature of Colorado.

      But the Legislature certainly changed, because of the mental state of the skiers.

      It is referred to a 'Representative Government', at work


    4. How about 'drunk' skiers.

      Those little 'wine skins', they're all over the slopes.

    5. Attacking snowflakes are really scary, especially when it's snowing.

      But in the spring where ever a snowflake has fallen a flower will be growing.


    6. snowflake
      a deragatory term for a white person.

      "I tell you what, next time that snowflake looks at me the wrong way, I'll cap his ass."

  26. If we were to get into the 'Way Back' machine, it would be evident tha in 2008 there were very few, at the Elephant Bar, who saw the danger of electing John McCain as President of the United States.

    desert rat led the charge against electing John McCain and was pilloried for it.

    To bad he has retird and his sage advise and penetrating insights are no longer available.

    Bring back the desert rat!

    1. Anyone who opposes John McCain's call to support the government of Iraq, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Iran, in their fight to retake Fallujia from the al-Qaeda-backed rebels is an anti-Semite.

      Anyone who opposes John McCain's call to support the al-Qaeda-backed rebels in Syria against the Assad government, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Iran, is an anti-Semite.

  27. The law made missionaries liable to five years’ imprisonment for attempting to persuade people to change their religion, and three years’ imprisonment for any Jew who converted.

    A step up from the death penalty for the same, in most Arab countries, but still...

    1. The Synagogue LadySun Jan 05, 11:26:00 AM EST

      She was just a little pregnant!

    2. Teresita RedingerSun Jan 05, 11:23:00 AM EST
      The law made missionaries liable to five years’ imprisonment for attempting to persuade people to change their religion, and three years’ imprisonment for any Jew who converted.

      A step up from the death penalty for the same, in most Arab countries, but still...

      Actually Ms T you could not be more wrong. But who can argue anything with you? Your ignorant POV about Israel and it's laws to outlaw missionary attempts in the only Jewish state on the planet after a recent history of Christian nations geocoding Jews? Simply shows your bias and intolerance.

      To compare it to execution in arabs nations and call it "a step up"? Make me think you are the asshole you appear to be...


    3. - Sun Dec 22, 10:49:00 AM EST

      I wonder how long til the Palestinians get lucky and murder a few dozen Israeli kids…

    4. Ever think that Israel build more homes in response to Palestinian terror attacks?

      If not? they should


    5. Israel was founded by terrorists
      Israel is sustained by terrorism

      Without terrorism, there would be no Israel


    6. We know that both the Israeli and the NAZI embrace the concept of Lebensraum ("living space") as being a law of nature for all healthy and vigorous peoples of superior races …


    7. Three key features characterize Israeli apartheid:

      • Four million Palestinians in the Occupied Territories lack the right to vote for the government that controls their lives through a military occupation.

      In addition to controlling the borders, air space, water, tax revenues, and other vital matters pertaining to the Occupied Territories,
      Israel alone issues the identity cards that determine the ability of Palestinians to work and their freedom of movement.

      • About 1.2 million Palestinian Israelis, who make up 20 percent, or one-fifth, of Israel’s population, have second-class citizenship within Israel, ...
      ... which defines itself as a Jewish state rather than a state for all its citizens.

      More than 20 provisions of Israel’s principal laws discriminate, either directly or indirectly, against non-Jews, according to Adalah: The Legal Center for Minority Rights in Israel.

      Millions of Palestinians remain refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and elsewhere, unable to return to their former homes ...
      ... and land in present-day Israel.

      Even though the right of return for refugees is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.


    8. "I don't understand your optimism," Ben-Gurion declared.

      "Why should the Arabs make peace?
      If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel.

      That is natural: we have taken their country.

    9. Please provide the link from which this "quote" of Ben Gurion came.

      The 1947 United Nations partition borders were drawn precisely to include within the Jewish area those lands that had been purchased; had the Palestinians and Arab states not responded to partition by trying to snuff out the "Zionist entity," Israel today would be a quite tiny state delineated by the land purchased during the Mandatory era.___Daniel Pipes


  28. Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace

    Harry Elmer Barnes

    Although I'm only into the first hundred pages of this by Barnes et al,
    I already find this to be a fascinating work, and thus deem myself qualified to recommend it to any serious student of revisionist history.

    This one is really where you should start, and then maybe graduate, say,
    to Buchanan's examination on "the Unnecessary War".

    Reading both of these, you will have a thorough grounding on the history of this period.
    It may also leave you feeling angry--angry at the Establishment for having fed us so many lies for all of these decades, and angry at yourself for having believed them.

  29. It's past time to take off the brass knuckles and arm oneself -


    1. farmerbobsnapavalleySun Jan 05, 06:26:00 PM EST

      One February night long, long ago,
      Farmer Bob decided to make dinner for his wife.

      An idea took form.  
      For the finishing touch to her dinner plate,
      he fashioned a tiny heart-shaped cookie cutter and
      used it to cut his recently pickled beets into hearts for his sweetheart. 

       Word got around about his idea and by popular demand,
       Farmer Bob started producing and sharing his romantic idea,
       "Heart Beets."
        You too can share in the love
      — 16 oz. of pickled, preserved, delicious love—
       in a jar, just for you!

  30. 25 of 73 comments so far today by "Stunted Growth"


    1. stunt
      1. A feat displaying unusual strength, skill, or daring.

      noun: growth; plural noun: growths

      1. the process of increasing in physical size.

      synonyms: development, maturation, growing, germination, sprouting;

      antonyms: withering

      the process of developing or maturing physically, mentally, or spiritually.

      synonyms: expansion, extension, development, progress, advance, advancement, headway,

      antonyms: failure, decline

      2. the process of increasing in amount, value, or importance.
      synonyms: increase, expansion, augmentation, proliferation, multiplication, enlargement,

      increase in economic value or activity.

  31. New York City's new mayor vows to end inequality.


    This would be a good trick.

    Just because it goes against the natural order of things doesn't mean it shouldn't be tried again.

    But what would it mean for those who always attack their betters?

    What would they do without a target?

    Relax, it's not so easy to change the natural order of things.....


    1. When you stop doing things for fun you might as well be dead!


  32. Revealed: What your booze preferences say about your politics

    posted at 3:36 pm on January 3, 2014 by Guy Benson

    Frivolous “data,” but irresistible content for a slow news week — especially while arguing about vices and prohibitions is all the rage. Via the Washington Post:

    In a nutshell, Democrats like clear liquors (gin, vodka), while Republicans tend to go for the brown stuff (bourbon, whiskey, etc). Rum is bipartisan. Beer results — from a separate, um, analysis — are here. Finally, wine consumption is a strong indicator of voter participation rates:

    Dube found that 14 of the top 15 brands that indicate someone is most likely to vote are wines…Champagne, as it turns out, is mostly a Democratic drink.

    Of course it is. Smug liberals regularly pop the cork to congratulate one another on their moral and intellectual superiority, spotless intentions, ‘fairness’ fetishism, tolerance, and empathy. Results and empiricism are such buzz-kills. Disclosure: As a filthy RINO, my primary alcohol preference is imbibing in the warm cocoon of elite Beltway cocktail parties. When you’re busy sucking up to snobby liberals, the particular brand of poison is largely irrelevant, amirite?

    1. Has a nifty graphic and a special section to click on for beer drinkers like Rufus here -

    2. Dube found that 14 of the top 15 brands that indicate someone is most likely to vote are wines…Champagne, as it turns out, is mostly a Democratic drink.

      Black Velvet and ice, with chocolate milk. Makes me a Libertarian.

    3. Chivas Regal and Mountain Dew makes me unique........


    4. snowflake
      a person who think they are OMG-UNIQUE!, but is, in fact, just like everyone else.

      "you're a unique little snowflake, just like everyone else."

  33. New York City's new mayor vows to end inequality.

    Worked great in Detroit. Everyone who's left is equal.

  34. Hitler and Eva Braun lived happily ever after in Argentina -

    1. When I finally have to flee the Feds I am going to Argentina too.

    2. I will still be able to blog from there.

      Heh heh heh


    3. A plan, especially a very focused one,
      narrows down the possibilities of the future to just a couple of things:
      that things either go to plan, or they don't.”

    4. Fudd Busters InternationalSun Jan 05, 06:32:00 PM EST

      Born: April 20, 1889

      Today - January 5, 2014

      Happily Ever After = 129 years old

      It is extremely doubtful that he is


    5. “Everybody must have a fantasy.”

  35. Borderland Beat Reporter ddSun Jan 05, 06:39:00 PM EST

    Nine Dead in Attack on Tuxpan Prison in Guerrero State

    The Attorney General of the State (PGJE) confirmed that an armed group early Friday attacked the Center for Rehabilitation of Tuxpan, on Iguala, Guerrero, and 9 people, 4 inmates and 5 of the attackers, were killed.

    The attack occurred in the city of Iguala, about halfway between Mexico City and the Pacific Coast resorts of Acapulco.

    Unofficial sources said the six armed attackers approached the prison disguised as Ministerial Police and told a guard at the gate that they were bringing in a prisoner after midnight..

    Once inside the prison, they went immediately to the area where the prisoners slept and opened fire on the sleeping inmates.

    Four inmates were killed in the gunfire.
    The armed commandos then kidnapped a guard and held him hostage as they ran for the gate.
    They opened fire on the guard tower and gunfire was exchanged with the tower and other guards.
    Five of the attackers were killed in the shootout, while another attacker and a guard were injured.

    The motive for the assault on the prison was unknown.
    Yahoo news reported that one of the dead inmates was a convicted cocaine dealer,
    another was a kidnapper and the two others were inprisoned for carrying illegal weapons.

    In a statement Friday, the state prosecutors stated they had not ruled out the possibility of involvement by prison officials “by omission or participation”. Mexican prison authorities have a long history of colluding with criminals.

    Members of the country’s powerful drug cartels, meanwhile,
    have a long tradition of masquerading as law enforcement officials while doing some of their bloodiest business.

    The attack came less than 2 months after the Mexican human rights commission issued a report on the deplorable conditions of the country’s penal system, noting that 65 of the 101 most crowded prisons were effectively under inmate control.

    That report emphasized that in 2012, in Mexican prisons,
    261 inmates escaped and 174 were killed in riots, fights, and other acts of violence.

    In coordination with prison authorities, the 27th Battalion of the Mexican Army reestablished control of the facilty

    If any reader has any info on any “big name” inmates who are incarcerated in Tuxpan, please post it.


  36. Th Israeli set up Concentration Camp
    for the 'darkies'


    TEL AVIV (Reuters) – Thousands of African migrants, many holding banners demanding freedom for compatriots jailed by Israel, protested on Sunday in a Tel Aviv square against a new open-ended detention law which allows migrants to be sent to a desert prison.

    The protests prompted a rare and strongly worded statement from the U.N. refugee agency, saying that Israel’s incarceration of migrants, including family breadwinners, caused “hardship and suffering” and was “not in line with” a 1951 world treaty on the treatment of refugees.

    Human rights groups say more than 300 people have been arrested since the law, which allows authorities to detain migrants without valid visas indefinitely, was passed by Israel’s parliament three weeks ago.

    Dozens more have been summoned for detention, among them men with wives and children, rights activists and the UNHCR said.

    Some 60,000 migrants, largely from Eritrea and Sudan, have crossed into Israel across a once-porous border with Egypt since 2006, Israeli authorities say.

    Many live in poor areas of Tel Aviv and say they want asylum and safe haven. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he views the presence of many of the Africans as a threat to Israel’s Jewish social fabric.

    An Israeli border fence has cut off the African influx from Egypt since 2012, but migrants who have already crossed can be sent to what the government describes as an open prison in Israel’s southern desert.

    The new facility, which was the focal point of the protests by some 10,000 in Tel Aviv, is similar to a half-way house. Detainees can leave during the day but must report back by nightfall. Migrants can be held there without a time limit pending voluntary repatriation, implementation of deportation orders or resolution of their asylum requests.

    In a written statement, Walpurga Englbrecht, the UNHCR representative in Israel, said she was “particularly disquieted” about the newest Israeli facility that

    “would appear to operate as a detention centre from where there is no release.
    This means in effect indefinite detention.”

  37. The time-honored tradition is to support Israel in absolutely everything it does, to support and deal with the local ruling elites however loathsome ... and to leave the normal population to rot. America armed Saudi-Arabia and pissed off every Shia worldwide. America armed SaddamHussein and pissed off every Muslim worldwide. America helped Israel in every way conceivable to frustrate attempts at a settlement and *really* pissed off every Muslim. America sat and watched while people were gassed or shot wholesale but went to war to "liberate" Kuwaiti billionaire real estate. Short of carpet-bombing Mecca with pig blood, I cannot think of any way America hasn't pursued a foreign policy designed to annoy the locals.

  38. AIPAC has published the list of senators who so far have agreed to co-sponsor the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act of 2013, including John McCain (Likud, Arizona). This is in violation of the NPT Iran has signed. Very few of the 47 co-sponsors in the Senate have chosen to publicize their support for the bill to their constituents through local media or other means.

    1. Ms T, thanks once again for showing you have a hatred for all things Israel and or jewish.

      Do me a favor, if and when you have a cancer flare up? make sure no Jewish or Israeli doctors, medicine or equipment helps saves your ungrateful, pathetic ass...

  39. The Saudis are the cancer.

    1. The cancer has spread throughout the entire Middle East with the exception of Israel.

      My google name thingy is down again but I am working on it.

    2. Miss T you are slipping back into your thoughtless and normal anti-all things Jewish mode again.

      Please reflect before you post dear Catholic woman.

    3. Great game between San Francisco and Green Bay, which SF won by 3 on a field goal with a few seconds left.

    4. Looked colder than a witch's tit in Nome out there.

    5. Bob,

      I will not disagree with the observation that Saudi Arabia is an enemy. By what leap of logic she went from there to Israel being...I am not sure confusing.

      If Israel and its lobbiests had all the power feverishly imagined, why has Israel not received recognition during the last 65 years. It just ain't so and is silly when thought through.

  40. Non sense.

    The muzzie must pissed off at someone.

    It's what they do, always and forever.


  41. Replies
    1. Aha !!

      All because of the confidence Meister Ash instilled in me !!

      May each day of his new year be better than the previous day !!

    2. Hung over again, so the odds tell me.....

    3. A better way of stating your question:

      Where in Hell is Quirk?

      Those vodka hangovers are misery itself.....

  42. Kapernick had to call a timeout at the start of the Second Half because he forgot his wristband!

    Trade the Loser!

    1. Candlestick slated to be Demolished.

      Hosted the best Players in Baseball and Football in our lifetime:

      Willie Mays and Jerry Rice

    2. Was that it? I missed it taking a piss but my wife was blazing away......

    3. I never knew about wristbands being commonplace until this year.

      Haven't been following closely for a while.

      Would be interesting to know how they use them.

      Seems like with today's digital technology, they could have everything ever thought of.

      Being able to find/display it in real time might be difficult.

    4. Kapernick played without sleeves!

      7 rushes for 98 yards.

      Beat Rogers in Passing.

    5. For non-fans who might not know:

      Lambeau was below Zero.

    6. About half the players were without sleeves.

      I asked my wife if with sleeves would the sweat turn to ice?

      She didn't know........but said there are all sorts of new materials out there on the market now.....

      That play near the end when the pass rusher turned inside gave the open field to the outside for that long quarterback run for the first........

      Was a really good game I thought.

    7. They had massive hot air blowers on the sidelines.......the players huddled around those a lot when not in the game......

    8. Learned a week ago that the no-sleeves look is to intimidate the opponents.

    9. IMO, the NFL should quit keeping score, and keep up with our public schools.

      New Age Rules!

    10. This comment has been removed by the author.

    11. You'll be able to buy Candlestick Seats. pairs.

      How did they access my wetdream fantasies?

    12. This comment has been removed by the author.

  43. Last week two Jews were murdered by a sniper in Lebanon. Additionally, during the same time frame, rockets were fired into Israel from Gaza.

    The Jews have been remarkably restrained.

    When Israel goes into these places again, gas and bullets will fly. Global amnesia will suddenly overcome the media and politicians of the world, who will all forget simultaneously the provocation.

    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.

  44. Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday plans to announce an effort to expand trade between New York companies and foreign countries that will be led by former Morgan Stanley MS +1.55% CEO John J. Mack, said administration officials with knowledge of the plan.


    Until now, the state has relied largely on the Empire State Development Corp. to connect companies with distributors in Canada, Europe and South Africa, and on federal grants from the U.S. Small Business Administration for assistance entering the Chinese and Korean markets.

    No additional state funding would be allotted to the new program, administration officials said; rather, the state could use existing funding through Empire State Development to create its infrastructure.

  45. David Ben GurionSun Jan 05, 07:23:00 PM EST

    "I don't understand your optimism," Ben-Gurion declared.

    "Why should the Arabs make peace?
    If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel.

    That is natural: we have taken their country."

    Please, provide a link for this "quote".

    The 1947 United Nations partition borders were drawn precisely to include within the Jewish area those lands that had been purchased; had the Palestinians and Arab states not responded to partition by trying to snuff out the "Zionist entity," Israel today would be a quite tiny state delineated by the land purchased during the Mandatory era.___Daniel Pipes___Daniel Pipes

    1. .

      This is the Daniel Pipes you are so taken with?


      I wonder why?


    2. .

      According to The New York Times: "Among his supporters, Mr. Pipes enjoys a heroic status; among his detractors, he is reviled."[6] [From Wiki]


    3. I regard the New York Times as Gospel.


    4. You can Google it if you're really interested


    5. Danial Pipes, the fellow that says the Alawi are not Muslims?

      'Alawis reject Islam's main tenets; by almost any standard they must be considered non-Muslims.

      Some 'Alawi doctrines appear to derive from Phoenician paganism, Mazdakism and Manicheanism.
      But by far the greatest affinity is with Christianity.

      'Alawi religious ceremonies involve bread and wine;
      indeed, wine drinking has a sacred role in 'Alawism, for it represents God.

      The religion holds 'Ali, the fourth caliph, to be the (Jesus-like) incarnation of divinity.
      It has a holy trinity, consisting of Muhammad, 'Ali, and Salman al-Farisi, a freed slave of Muhammad's.

      'Alawis celebrate many Christian festivals, including Christmas, New Year's, Epiphany, Easter, Pentecost, and Palm Sunday.

      They honor many Christian saints: St. Catherine, St. Barbara, St. George, St. John the Baptist, St. John Chrysostom, and St. Mary Magdalene. The Arabic equivalents of such Christian personal names as Gabriel, John, Matthew, Catherine, and Helen, are in common use.

      And 'Alawis tend to show more friendliness to Christians than to Muslims.

    6. For these reasons, many observers - missionaries especially -
      have suspected the 'Alawis of a secret Christian proclivity.

      Even T. E. Lawrence described them as
      "those disciples of a cult of fertility, sheer pagan, antiforeign, distrustful of Islam, drawn at moments to Christianity by common persecution."

      The Jesuit scholar Henri Lammens unequivocally but gullibly concluded from his research that
      "the Nusayris were Christians"
      and their practices combine Christian with Shi'i elements.

      If Mr Pipes is an 'expert', then he must be correct, the Alawi are not Muslims



    7. Maybe they are just another "Lost Tribe"?


    8. For those that are not forgers, they can look, here.

    9. David Ben Gurion made no such statement. That is why you cannot give a link.

      Again, you lie.

      Daniel Pipes (PhD) happens to be one the foremost authorities on the ME. And Alawites are considered apostates as are the Kurds.

      But, that has nothnig to do with the alleged quote of Ben Gurion:

      "I don't understand your optimism," Ben-Gurion declared.

      "Why should the Arabs make peace?
      If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel.

      That is natural: we have taken their country."

      Ben Gurion made no such quote, liar

  46. "Doug Houle, PT, MS Doug Houle, PT, MS Assistant Instructor Functional Dry Needling® Course, Level 1 Doug is an honors college ..."

  47. "Still, with a cold drizzle falling across the stadium, the Chargers held a precarious 10-point lead for much of the fourth quarter, twice forcing the Bengals to turn the ball over on downs near midfield. All told, Cincinnati’s last nine drives ended as follows: lost fumble, field goal, punt, lost fumble, interception, interception, downs, downs, end of game. A.J. Green, Dalton’s favorite target, was limited to three catches for 34 yards.

    The harassment of Dalton “got to him pretty good,” Chargers linebacker Manti Te’o said. “The game is won and lost in the trenches. Our front did a tremendous job of getting pressure. Even when we were only rushing four [defenders] we were still getting pressure.”"


    I'm his new best boyfriend.

    1. .

      I thought being dead was one of the prerequisite for the job of Manti's BBF.

      I'm sure he's a nice guy but that sounds a little drastic.


  48. 3 or 4 Packers were flagrantly holding when Rogers escaped to pass in the fourth quarter. Not called.

    Rogers escape was a work of art, nonetheless.

    Jumps up and holds the ball high as if to pass, niners number 91 (Ray McDonald) is faked out of his jock and jumps up to block as Rogers comes down to run for enough safety to pass.

    ,,,Ray went to Florida State, Rogers, Berkeley.

  49. President Barack Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha left their vacation in Hawaii on Saturday, but left First Lady Michelle Obama behind on the islands, according to news agency reports. The president reportedly let his wife stay on in Hawaii with friends as a "birthday present." Michelle Obama will turn 50 years old on Jan. 17.
    It is a birthday present whose costs, in separate travel and security expenses, are likely to be borne, in part, by taxpayers. On a previous occasion, when Mrs. Obama left for a Hawaii vacation in advance of her husband, the additional cost to the Treasury was estimated to be at least $63,000, and potentially upwards of $100,000.
    Mrs. Obama's vacations have often been a source of controversy, beginning with a lavish holiday with friends in Spain's Costa del Sol in 2010, and continuing with high-end sojourns in the Bahamas, Martha's Vineyard and the Maine coast--the latter after urging Americans to vacation in the oil spill-stricken Gulf of Mexico.

    1. "The president reportedly let his wife stay on in Hawaii with friends as a "birthday present.""

      On us.

      Fuckin Pigs.

  50. This comment has been removed by the author.

  51. .

    It appears GOP leaders want to get rid of Justin Amish because he isn't a team player.

    Republican bigwigs hope the 2014 elections will be just like the 2010 midterms, except without the great unwashed masses of the Tea Party mucking things up. This time, the Republican establishment is launching a few primary challenges of its own.

    Sitting atop the target list is Justin Amash, the second-term congressman from Michigan. Dubbed the “most liberal Republican” by Karl Rove, Amash is a favorite of the Club for Growth, Heritage Action, FreedomWorks, and other Tea Party groups. But GOP moderates hope Gerald Ford’s former district isn’t an ideal base for the most influential Ron Paul Republican outside of libertarianism’s first family.

    His opponent in the primaries declares that rather than try to stop the NSA legislatively, that the job should be left to the courts. And how has that been working, Mr. Ellis?


    1. Been so long since Bush blew it and passed off to the Supremes, I've forgotten what it was.

      Roberts sure saved the day for Obamacare.

      Ginsberg sure is a toughie, hope she holds out for 3 more years. Not betting on it.


  52. His business dealings landed Mr. Stark on the front page of The New York Post on Sunday, with the headline
    “Who didn’t want him dead?”


  53. Reuters -

    NEW YORK (Reuters) -
    Liz Cheney, the oldest daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney,
    plans to end her bid to run as a Republican for Wyoming's U.S.

  54. Damn my google name went down again......maybe I have some google virus......anyway:

    I heard that the Alawites were Christians with a twist of paganism mixed in for flavor.......I got this from that unimpeachable source....... desert rat........

    He doesn't post here much anymore, but some of you might remember him......the most wonderful gentleman that ever graced this blog.....


    1. All you have to do, read Mr Pipes .... too

      That is what desert rat read, and posted on, the writings of Mr Pipes and T.E. Lawrence.

      allen claims he is an 'expert'.

      Who are you to dispute that?



    2. 'he' being Mr Pipes.

      heh, heh, heh



    3. I'd send my daughter over to help you out, anon, but she doesn't like bigots.

    4. Didn't Lawrence die on December 14th of last year?

    5. "After Aqaba, Lawrence was promoted to major, and the new commander-in-chief of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force, General Sir Edmund Allenby, agreed to his strategy for the revolt, stating after the war:

      "I gave him a free hand. His cooperation was marked by the utmost loyalty, and I never had anything but praise for his work, which, indeed, was invaluable throughout the campaign. He was the mainspring of the Arab movement and knew their language, their manners and their mentality."[25]
      Lawrence now held a powerful position, as an adviser to Faisal and a person who had Allenby's confidence."

    6. Petraeus woulda just paid them off and had time for a good fuck.

    7. Hondaley Davidson:

      "In the mid-1930s, Alfred Rich Child opened a production line in Japan with the 74 cubic inches (1,210 cc) VL.

      The Japanese license-holder, Sankyo Seiyako Corporation, severed its business relations with Harley-Davidson in 1936 and continued manufacturing the VL under the Rikuo name.[26]"

  55. See what I mean, folks?

    desert rat's noble place has been taken by some uncouth son of a bitch who always acts like a professional asshole.


  56. Thanatician

    "This would be the perfect one-stop solution to the problem of superfluous old people. Every hospital would be required to have a staff thanatician who would smoothly handle the transition from long-term care to assisted suicide. Recalcitrant patients could be persuaded by frequent "counseling" and reduction of palliatives such as opiates. Perhaps I'm being paranoid; I hope so.

    In summary, to paraphrase Yeats, this is no country for old men or women. It used to be."

    Read more:
    Follow us: @AmericanThinker on Twitter | AmericanThinker on Facebook

    1. "For lack of a better term, let's call such a hypothetical individual a "thanatician." Let's posit that carefully trained and closely monitored thanaticians would be permitted to provide medically screened, dying patients the same type of lethal medication now prescribed by physicians in Oregon and Washington -- under essentially the same restrictions and safeguards.

      But wait: Isn't this proposal a cop-out? Doesn't it merely place the moral issue of assisted suicide in the lap of the nonphysician, allowing the dying patient's physician to shuffle off with a clear conscience? Even worse: Would the use of such death-dealing personnel amount to abandonment of the patient, as Dr. Geppert recently suggested to me?

      Still other questions arise. As my colleague Dr. James L. Knoll has suggested, might not the training, monitoring, and supervising of thanaticians create more problems and headaches than it would solve?

      Finally, doesn't the very notion of "thanaticians" suggest that we have lost faith in what Dr. Knoll rightly calls "the intensely personal journey" of doctor and patient?"


    2. No Problemo:

      Put Rufus in charge of the licensing board for Thanaticians.

      He's got a clear conscience that Obama, Waxman, and Pelosi can do no wrong and will be able to make selections that we'll have to see at work before we can tell how good they really are.

      They have to be appointed so we can see what's in their hearts.

    3. The surgeon for my wife was seemingly 100 percent at the will of the patient's wishes. I decided not to argue with her, my son, and my wife.

      We could have waited and let her regain her strength on a temporary feeding tube, and she could have survived the anesthesia/post op pain shot.

      Son's argument was that she might have had to endure a lot more pain from multiple metastases.
      I've become a little more comfortable with that argument over the last 2 years.

      Still would have been nice to have had some talks having been given some sad new information.

      Whether I would have done at all well in such talks, I have no idea.

      If I had 20 20 hindsight I would have told her how much we love her almost constantly.

  57. David Ben Gurion allegedly said:

    "I don't understand your optimism," Ben-Gurion declared.

    "Why should the Arabs make peace?
    If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel.

    That is natural: we have taken their country."

    David Ben Gurion made no such statement. That is why you cannot give a link.

    Again, you lie.

    Ben Gurion made no such quote, liar

  58. Their religion is secret and seems to be a syncretistic mixture of extreme Shi'a (Ghulat), ancient pagan, gnostic and Christian elements. They are sometimes classified as a branch of Twelver Shi'ism, but are actually an independent religion. They do not keep the five pillars of Islam, and they have no mosques but meet in private houses for their religious observances. Their festivals include Persian and Christian holy days. They have a ceremony similar to the Christian mass and believe in a trinitarian manifestation of God.


    1. "Their religion is secret and seems to be a syncretistic mixture of extreme Shi'a (Ghulat), ancient pagan, gnostic and Christian elements."

      After saying this the article goes into considerable detail about this which does appear to be a syncretistic outlook, leaving one to wonder how anyone can know so much about that which has just been said to be a big secret.

      For a Christian outlook with a twist of pagan - desert rat - it does seem to be awfully heavy on the Shia, making Ali and if I read it correctly a couple of other dudes into the Deity in form. But this doesn't, again if I read it right, make it exactly a Christian Trinitarian formulation, where each branch of the Deity is said to be co-equal, like the branches of our government.

      As to mosques I recall seeing some pics of Assad dedicating a mosque.

      Interesting topic.

    2. "The 'Alawis believe in the absolute unity and transcendence of God who is undefinable and unknowable. God however reveals himself periodically to man in a Trinitarian form. This has happened seven times in history, the last and final revelation being in 'Ali, Muhammad, and Salman al-Farisi. (Salman was a Persian disciple and close companion of Muhammad).

      The first person of this Trinity ('Ali) represents the Meaning of the Deity (Ma'na) which is the inner essence of God. The second person (Muhammad) is the Name or the Veil of Deity (Ism, Hijab) - its outward manifestation. The third person (Salman) is the Gate (Bab) of the Deity, through whom the true believer can gain an entrance to the mystery of the Godhead as revealed in 'Ali.

      The first person, the Ma'na, is the real substance of God, the source and meaning of all things. The other two are derived from him and inferior to him. They are emanations of the Ma'na's light. In 'Alawi theology 'Ali is thus placed above Muhammad in the hierarchy of the trinity. All attributes and names of God are given to 'Ali and worship is directed to him."

    3. Perhaps Assad was dedicating a Sunni mosque and was out to build up a little good will.

      The idea of worshipping in a house I like better than the idea of worshipping in a large building built for the purpose, but best of all is out by a mountain stream, or under the stars.....there you find the real cathedral.....

    4. And if God is undefinable and unknowable one best be careful whom one picks as His manifestation - one might end up with, say....... Quirk.....

  59. David Ben GurionMon Jan 06, 01:23:00 AM EST

    For those that are not forgers, they can look, here.

    Other than Palestinian sites on wiki, the statement is considered apocryphal. That means it is made up to suit the occasion. No such statement is found in Ben Gurion's vast library of correspondence. No living person can recall having ever heard such a statement from Ben Gurion. Diaries etc. from his contemporaries mention no such statement. Had he made such a statement, the Zionists would have run him out of the country.

    That leaves you and the Palestinians making the claim. Who should I believe?

    1. If the choice is between rat and the Palestinians I'd think you might actually be marginally better off opting for the Palestinians.


  60. David Ben Gurion,

    Wiki gives a quote about Ben Gurion wherein lies part of your quote. The gentleman making the claim of a private meeting with Ben Gurion during which Ben Gurion made the quote is long dead.

    Wiki gives NO such quote by Ben Gurion.

    1. David Ben Gurion,

      What was the source of the information used by you to quote Ben Gurion? Asking for a specific link is a fair question, particularly when misrepresenting someone.

  61. Quirk,

    Re: "taken with"

    Adj. 1. taken with - marked by foolish or unreasoning fondness; "gaga over the rock group's new album"; "he was infatuated with her"
    enamored, in love, infatuated, potty, soft on, smitten
    loving - feeling or showing love and affection; "loving parents"; "loving glances"

    I am "taken with" Daniel Pipes because of homoerotic fantasies.

  62. King Rat,

    JennyFri Dec 27, 01:49:00 PM EST
    We must not disturb those Israeli defense contracts with the NSA and they are huge!

    allenFri Dec 27, 01:59:00 PM EST
    How much in dollars would you call huge?

    AnonymousFri Dec 27, 02:04:00 PM EST
    Since 1977, $110 billion, USD.
    That is HUGE
    Crazy Crapper Farmer Bob Fudd

    allenFri Dec 27, 02:30:00 PM EST
    Re: $110 billion USD

    Your link please - one specific to the NSA - no mumbo-jumbo about trade surpluses and military aid. I want your link that states the NSA has hired Israel at the cost of $110 billion USD.

    Desert Rat was unable to provide a link specific to the NSA.

    He Is A Liar and Racist

    1. But desert rat is a liar even if Judaism is not considered a race.

  63. WASHINGTON (AP) More than half of female Marines in boot camp can't do three pullups, the minimum standard that was supposed to take effect with the new year, prompting the Marine Corps to delay the requirement, part of the process of equalizing physical standards to integrate women into combat jobs.

    1. Because the important thing is they are trying. I'm sure the enemy understands.

    2. I will not bring down on the women if there be three among them that can do one pull up, saith the Commandant.

    3. Oh all right then, I'm tired of arguing, I will not bring down on them if you can find just one woman who can do just one pull up, saith the Commandant of All the Corps.

    4. "one woman, one pull up, one time"

    5. desert rat doesn't always lie......he did say he was a professional asshole......and we all know that to be true.......

      Back to beddie after the third piss of the night, relieved....

    6. Women in combat will bring peace unto the World.

      No Pullups, no War.

    7. Female Marines will challenge The Norkor Army to Arm Wrestling.

      No Counting Score.