This is Blowback

The YouTube video depicting Mohammed is nothing more than the straw that broke the camel’s back. This kind of violent uprising against American power and interests in the region has been a long time in the making. It is not just the continuation of drone strikes which often kill civilians in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Afghanistan, either. Nor is it the American invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. Nor is it the United States and the West’s support for various deeply unpopular regimes such as the monarchies in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia (and formerly Iran). Nor is it that America has long favoured Israel over the Arab states, condemning, invading and fomenting revolution in Muslim nations for the pursuit of nuclear weapons while turning a blind eye to Israel’s nuclear weapons and its continued expansion into the West Bank.

Mark LeVine, Professor of Middle Eastern history at U.C. Irvine, writes:

Americans and Europeans are no doubt looking at the protests over the “film”, recalling the even more violent protests during the Danish cartoon affair, and shaking their heads one more at the seeming irrationality and backwardness of Muslims, who would let a work of “art”, particularly one as trivial as this, drive them to mass protests and violence.

Yet Muslims in Egypt, Libya and around the world equally look at American actions, from sanctions against and then an invasion of Iraq that killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and sent the country back to the Stone Age, to unflinching support for Israel and all the Arab authoritarian regimes (secular and royal alike) and drone strikes that always seem to kill unintended civilians “by mistake”, and wonder with equal bewilderment how “we” can be so barbaric and uncivilised.

All of these things (and many more) have contributed to Muslim and Arab anger toward the United States and the West. Yet the underlying fact of all of these historical threads has been the United States’ oil-driven foreign policy. Very simply, the United States has for over half a century pursued a foreign policy in the region geared toward maintaining the flow of oil out of the region at any cost — even at the cost of inflaming the irrational and psychopathic religious elements that have long existed in the region.

This is not to defend the barbaric elements who resort to violence and aggression as a means of expressing their disappointment with U.S. foreign policy. It is merely to recognise that you do not stir the hornet’s nest and then expect not to get stung. 

And the sad thing is that stirring the hornet’s nest is totally avoidable. There is plenty of oil and energy capacity in the world beyond the middle east. The United States is misallocating capital by spending time, resources, energy and manpower on occupying the middle east and playing world policeman. Every dollar taken out of the economy by the IRS to be spent drone striking the middle east into the stone age is a dollar of lost productivity for the private market. It is a dollar of productivity that the market could have been spent increasing American energy capacity and energy infrastructure in the United States — whether that is in oil, natural gas, solar, wind or hydroelectric.

And this effect can spiral; every dollar spent on arming and training bin Laden and his allies to fight the Soviet Union begot many more thousands of dollars of military spending when bin Laden’s mercenaries turned their firepower onto the United States, and the United States chose to spend over ten years and counting occupying Afghanistan (rightly known as the graveyard of empires). It is likely that the current uprisings will trigger even more U.S. interventionism in the region (indeed it already has as marines have already been dispatched to Yemen) costing billions or even trillions of dollars more money (especially if an invasion of Iran is the ultimate outcome). This in turn is likely to trigger even fiercer resistance to America from the Islamist elements, and so the spiral continues on.

The only way out of this money-sucking, resource-sucking, life-sucking trap that is very literally obliterating the American empire is to swallow pride and get out of the middle east, to stop misallocating American resources and productivity on unwinnable wars.

But neither major Presidential candidate is interested in such a policy. Perhaps it is because war is a great profit source for the military-industrial complex, the force to which both the Democratic and Republican parties are beholden?

In any case, we should expect to see much more of this:

Source: Reuters

About these ads

130 thoughts on “This is Blowback

  1. Pingback: The hornet’s nest of the Middle East, driven by American energy policy

  2. its time that we all move away from the violent acts of behaviour and follow the behaviour models that the religions preach anyway….

  3. Pingback: This is Blowback « Silver For The People – The Blog

  4. The blood-thirsty barbarian regime in Iran, which announced a few times its desire to destroy Israel is not symmetrical to Israel, as your post suggests. Also let me remind you that Muslim leaders sided with Hitler and against the west in ww2, long before the US was a factor in the region. There’s a much deeper issue here than energy policies. I agree that most US policies in the region are stupid, but I disagree with you that this is the source of the violence we’re seeing now. It’s just a focus point or an excuse. When the US exits the region (possibly because it’s broke and can’t afford it anymore) violence will continue, maybe in other avenues but it will continue.

    • I agree violence will continue when the US and the West exits the region. I think I am very clear that Islamism is a barbaric and psychopathic creed. Personally, I think it is a very bad idea to needlessly put yourself into the firing line of such a primeval force. (Israel is a different matter because its geography by definition puts it in the middle east, but I think Israel is overwhelmingly capable of defending itself).

      As for Israeli-Iranian symmetry, the point is not my opinion on the matter, but the perception of the wider middle east. They see an equivalence, and they see the United States unambiguously favouring Israel.

      • fair enough. I wish American leaders read Churchill’s account of his time in Afghanistan. Might have saved so much life and money

        “Nor are these struggles conducted with the weapons which usually belong to the races of such development. To the ferocity of the Zulu are added the craft of the Redskin and the marksmanship of the Boer. The world is presented with that grim spectacle, “the strength of civilisation without its mercy.” At a thousand yards the traveller falls wounded by the well-aimed bullet of a breech-loading rifle. His assailant, approaching, hacks him to death with the ferocity of a South-Sea Islander. The weapons of the nineteenth century are in the hands of the savages of the Stone Age.”

        • Precisely. Democracy only works when the people have level reasoned minds.
          I think we are entering a dangerous period where idiots posing as artists can denigrate religions so easily on the internet. Muslims are sensitive about these subjects and people should respect that.

          A child in a room somewhere could ignite WW3 in theory.

    • Of course the violence will continue because, as has already been stated, the U.S. has “stirred up the hornets nest”. The U.S. created the instability for their own nefarious purposes and to deny the pattern is to deny history. We have sided and or supported the most radical elements of Islam almost every time. Why? All wars are money wars and if you want to get to the bottom of it that’s where you will end up.

      I’ve seen so many interviews of Muslim people (despite what parts of the Qua ran may teach) who absolutely have no interest in “wiping out” Christians. Most of the peoples of the world have no real interest in war, they are but mere pawns in someone else’ game of chess, to be sacrificed for the “greater purpose” which ultimately turns out to be greed and power. Nothing more, nothing less.

      The Anglo-centric power elite is flexing it’s muscle because they are starting to lose their grip…. they are getting desperate and instability is good for business but thankfully due to the Age of the Internet and the free flow of information, it is becoming increasingly difficult for them to pull the wool of everyone’s eyes all the time. Yes, you can fool an awful lot of people most of the time but the internet is helping to, at least, tip the scales.

      • Lou Dobbs Tonight, the TV program, actually admitted we were “losing control” in parts of the world. Although it is obvious that we have sought to control the behavior of other nations, as if they weren’t sovereign nations, this is the first time I’ve actually heard someone admit that we are empire in search of global hegemony.

  5. Cut all support for the region, stop trading with them, and let irrationality find its own level. Without western production and western minds they would sink even further into poverty and starvation. Let them learn what an irrational Islamic world brings them: death. Maybe at the final threshold of oblivion they will choose to live and embrace reason and reality instead of faith and the supernatural.

    • I think we should trade with them as much as we can without occupying the region militarily. I think the saner elements in the Muslim countries will then have much more incentive to control the insane Islamist elements.

      • I agree. We don’t have to be occupiers to obtain our objectives. The Chinese get all the oil they need without a soldier on the ground. There is absolutely no evidence that our policy of military intervention accomplishes anything, and these people, given our absence, will attack one another.

        • Jeff and Ron, you are spot-on about the futility of trying to civilize Muslim nations and about letting them fight it out among themselves. But let’s use a rifle (specific facts, with hindsight) not a shotgun to blast folly. [Some truth in history can be readily found ONLY in " The Politically INcorrect Guide to American History" by Thos. E. Woods].

          Surely your are willing to look as far back as WW I — Wilson jumped into a bloodbath power struggle between European royal families, not for U.S. empire/hegemony, but in the foolish belief that he could dictate a peace that would end wars forever; result — Hitler. FDR pushed us unnecessarily — or at least early — into WW II, not for U.S. empire/hegemony, but to save Europe and Asia; result — victory in a horrible war, but NO U.S. territory/hegemony and DISSOLUTION of Europe’s African and Asian colonial empires and U.S. Pacific possessions. The U.S.-led Korean War, started by the USSR and declared by the even-then useless U.N., was probably a mistake and certainly fought “with one arm tied behind”; but the U.S. kept no territory [but still supports enormous military expenses in Korea and Japan]. Viet Nam was a mistake from start (one of a disastrous string of stupid CIA, et al adventures) to finish; but no territory/hegemony. The first Iraq war (short, cheap in blood (coalition’s) and treasure, was to secure Kuwait (and possibly Saudi) oil from terrorist nations’ control; no territory/hegemony. Afghan war was retaliation for 9/11 and (unsuccessful) prevention of further Taliban/al Qaeda attacks; result — we foolishly stayed and returned to “nation-build”; but no territory/hegemony. Second Iraq war was to destroy terrorism’s worst safe haven and financial supporter and WMD-developer; result — the third short war, but we foolishly stayed to nation-build; but no territory/hegemony, not even oil.

          And don’t forget that there must be energy “independence” before the civilized world can cut loose from Muslim oil production — another reason to replace Obama. And should we shrink from deterring obliteration of democratic Israel?

    • I agree. let them live the life they want. Let a tyrant rule the roost and control the oil and trade with the West. Sadam did a good job. So did Gadafi. And Mubarak. Let the wealthy smart people flee to the West. This will boost the Western economies.

      Democracy is a Western construction. We bred out all the violent frenzied people through total war over 2000 years. It is a genetic thing.

      • Your mention of breeding out violence remind me of the cult of war/violence that existing in Germany/Prussia for the 100 years before WWII. I get the feeling, especially when I see so many box office hits in the US being focused on war and violence, that we have a (somewhat) similar cult of war going on in the US.

      • Addendum to my last comment. The Swiss are armed to the teeth like Americans. But do they put violence on a pedestal like Americans? I think Americas obsession with violence is very unhealthy and is causing a lot of our problems.

        • To Casey’s and Doug’s posts of Sep 17; Question — how did our Constitutional Republic slide toward (into?) a “plutocracy” — rule of the wealthy/powerful?

          (My) Answer — negligent citizenry allowed greedy elites to accrue and misuse GOVERNMENT power. To prevent concentration of power, laws outlawed “combination in restraint of trade”, securities manipulation, banking excesses, non-transparency, non-competitive government purchasing, etc. But these laws often went unenforced against those with sufficient political influence, e.g., “Too big to fail”. Now we are teetering on the brink of unrestrained socialism — monopoly. Anyone remember the Soviet “Nomenklatura”? The soviet economic collapse?

          “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves that we are underlings.”

      • WHAT A CRASS REMARK. YOU OBVIOUSLY HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE OF WHAT LIFE IS LIKE UNDER THESE INSANE POWER MAD DESPOTS. DO SOME RESEARCH NUMBTY!

        • The internet allows the people not from the West to learn how to go about democracy. The ones that do learn realise their people will never change and they leave for the West. That is why the West should accept more refugees meeting strict criteria. It is the only way we will advance and breed out violence.

          If these refugees don’t follow the rule of law and reason, then they lose their rights as citizens.

          Religious violence has no place in a secular society. they have the right to open their places of worship for inspection and the right to distribute their religious material to potentially convert. But forced conversion is not the Western way.

      • We bred out all the violent people? I not so sure about that one, but some anthropologists and scientists do believe that behavior is just as much a heritable trait as eye color, etc.
        Asians seem to be the least violent, whites next, then blacks.
        I do agree that we would fare far better if we kept the Middle East at arm’s length. There are millions who hate us, and with some reason, and there is no reason to believe that military intervention in Muslim countries is an effective foreign policy.

    • Let’s deport the environmentalists, drill and drive down the oil price and bankrupt our enemies in the Middle East and Venezuela.

  6. If Mr. LeVine is a professor of of Middle Eastern history he is incompetent. These attacks are the Muslim Brotherhood’s 9/11 celebration. All was organized, and pre-planned. The “movie” is almost a year old and merely an excuse for the beginning of the reconstitution of the caliphate. Only the beginning of the violence towards all non muslin’s world wide and the rise of a Muslim empire.

  7. The YouTube video depicting Mohammed is nothing more than the straw that broke the camel’s back

    You believe that? If my daughter does an imitation of Andy Kaufman doing an imitation of Elvis doing an imitation of Muhammad, this would justify this vile behavior

    You are either a Muslim, demented PhD lefty like LeVine or british.

    I so delight in seeing Europe sink into the sea of Islam.

    Anybody with 1/10th of a brain knows that this was planned for weeks, if not months.

    I find that their is a common thread of giving Islam a pass on many economic blog sites such as yours, Max Keiser, SGT, Don’t tread on me, JSMineset,,,

    What pathetic excuses for men.

    • Of course it was, if not planned for months, then at least orchestrated. It’s not about the cartoons. That was the straw that broke the camel’s back, or as you might put it, a flimsy excuse.

      You seem to have missed the point anyway. The point is get away from the hornet’s nest or watch the American empire (and by extension, America) sink deeper into a quagmire of blowback and debt.

      Some arguments you just can’t win either by force or by rationality.

      • I can’t help but wonder if Muslim super sentivity about Islam has its origins in the suspicions by Muslims themselves that a ‘prophet’ who orders the murder of captives might just be a delusional sociopath.

  8. Pingback: Guest Post: This Is Blowback » A Taoistmonk's Life

  9. Aziz: listen to the rationality/reality of posts* in this thread. And please avoid false assumptions** and wishful thinking** when you are advising on foreign policy, not just hypothesizing on macroeconomics***.

    * Sammy, Gilad, Gleaves. And a guy named Aziz: “Islamism is a barbaric and psychopathic creed”

    **Churchill quote is NOT a “perfect SUMMATION of where we are right now”, only a piece of the problem.

    Yogiharoun’s “move away from violent acts of behavior” is NOT in the “behavior models that (all) the religions” preach. Whatever ambiguity may be found in the Quran’s decrees, modern Muslim ayatollahs and mullahs preach conquest, enslavement and killing. [Still waiting for reports of mass killing in the name of God by Buddhists, Hindus, Jews, Christians, etc.].

    Wrong! Israel is NOT capable of defending itself — against a first strike by nuclear weapons nor against a protracted war waged by multiple Muslim aggressors.

    *** Until the non-Muslim (and non-Russian, non-Venezuelan?) nations achieve energy independence, oil from Muslim nations will be required by civilized humanity.

    • Aziz: Re your “Some arguments you just can’t win either by force or by rationality”.

      We (civilized humanity) are not trying to “win an argument”.

      Don’t you agree that:

      (1) We are trying to survive and make life better for future generations?

      (2) Whether the enemy is disease, famine or enslavement, we should fight back?

      (3) While military war is detrimental to fighting disease and poverty, it is necessary against enslavement (e.g., WW II) — UNLESS war can be “deterred” (or nipped in the bud) by Peace through Strength and the Will to Use It? [Churchill wrote that Hitler's first invasion depended on horse-drawn artillery].

    • Wrong! Israel is NOT capable of defending itself — against a first strike by nuclear weapons nor against a protracted war waged by multiple Muslim aggressors.

      Israel is in the top 5 military forces in the world with a nuclear second strike, advanced aircraft technology, drones, chemical weapons, and effective surface to surface and surface to air missile defence. No military force in the middle east threatens them an inch, militarily. Threats to Israel are predominantly demographic in nature.

      • In cold war “war games” (with some of which I was acquainted), “second strike” was a possibility. With tiny Israel, I doubt it. Does “Mutually Assured Destruction” apply? Appeal?

        In any case, it’s best to deter war, especially nuclear. With U.S., U.K., NATO backing, deterrence surely would work. But with a former(?)-Muslim, pro-Muslim, anti-American president, who knows?

        • Israel has nuclear submarines that can launch ICBMs at any target on the planet. Iran knows this. Iran would be committing suicide to do anything directly to Israel.

          I agree deterrence is the best solution, 100%. But should deterrence involve attacking a country which we don’t know has a weapon and who claims to be enriching uranium for medical and energy uses? I don’t think so.

          People have been predicting imminent Iranian nuclear weapons since the 1990s and it has never happened. I can understand Iran wanting a nuclear weapon, for self-defensive purposes, but it would be grossly foolish for them to ever try and use it, and their military services seem professional and independent enough to ensure that this is very unlikely to happen.

        • But should deterrence involve attacking a country which we don’t know has a weapon and who claims to be enriching uranium for medical and energy uses?

          If you read the Qur’an you will find that it is permissible for Muhammadists to lie, cheat, steal, murder, or anything else to promote Islam. So in answer to you’re naive question is YES! Even the useless UN’s Mohamed ElBaradei (former head of the IEA) warned about the revolt in Egypt http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jun/15/egypt-mohamed-elbaradei-warning along with going on record to reveal that Iran blocked his inspections and impeded the inspections in general. And he is Egyptian. So, may I politely suggest you and yogiharoun acquire a bit more facts and do a bit of logical deduction before exposing yourselves as uninformed as you obviously are. It is painful to realize that there are Americans, if indeed you are American, with this type of blindness and mental incapacity.

        • If you read the Qur’an you will find that it is permissible for Muhammadists to lie, cheat, steal, murder, or anything else to promote Islam. So in answer to you’re naive question is YES!

          Getting a nuclear weapon is not promoting Islam. Getting and using a nuclear weapon against Israel ensures Iran’s destruction, because Israel has nuclear submarines. Iran know this, their military establishment is very rational and professional. Furthermore developing a nuclear weapon invites America and Israel to try and overthrow the present Iranian regime. As Mossad itself has noted, there is no evidence that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon, and as Mossad has also noted any intervention less than a full-scale invasion would not stop Iran achieving a nuclear weapon if it were developing one.

          Which brings us to the next point.

          We are continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy. Allah willing, and nothing is too great for Allah

          Osama bin Laden

          Can we afford this kind of intervention — a full scale invasion of Iran — even if Iran is developing a nuclear weapon? We are already hugely, hugely in debt. The economy was deeply depressed by the Iraqi and Afghani wars. A war against Iran would be a fiscal disaster for America.

          So given that Iran may not be a developing a nuclear weapon, and given that we know that in every single recorded case in history that mutually assured destruction has led to containment, it is clear that a war just is not worth the money even if — and it is a big if — Iran is developing a nuclear weapon. They cannot use it, and if they attempt to do so they will be destroyed. That was safe enough for the Soviets, it is safe enough for North Korea and China and India and Pakistan (who are arguably far less rational than Iran).

    • I think the Police should have avoided the use of dogs. Dogs are offensive to Muslims. This would just get the youths more emotional. Aussie Unionists chant violently and in Australia Muslims should be able to express emotion as well. Perhaps the Police should be a little more sensitive to keep emotions from reaching fever pitch.

  10. Pingback: Guest Post: This Is Blowback; zerohedge.com/news/guest-post-blowback « NonviolentConflict

  11. BR writes:
    “…We bred out all the violent frenzied people through total war over 2000 years. It is a genetic thing.”

    Well, let’s add up the violence gifted upon the world by the Romans, the Barbarians [of all stripes], the English, the Spanish, the Dutch, the English, the Portuguese, the English, the French, the English, the Americans, the Germans, the English, the Russians, the Soviets, the Americans, …

    In the West, violence has been brought to a much higher level, becoming, monarchy, state, then state/corporate-sponsored.

    The American war machine is truly something to behold.

    • My point was that the ‘wild eyed” soldiers died in battle and western man slowly became “tame” and “measured” suitable for democratic adversarial debate. There were certainly wars in the middle east, but the religion of Islam kept them at relative peace with one another.

      Any people fed up with their “wild eyed” brethren can migrate to the West and follow the rule of democratic law and secular religious tolerance.

      The Romans tried to “tame” the barbarians and failed. We should retreat and admit we made mistakes. The costs are too high and John’s article is aptly named.

      The Muslims in Australia are very peaceful and are integrating quite well. Life in Australia is too good for them to be disruptive. We have our share of terrorism threats but these are usually misguided youths under the influence of marginalised Imams. There is bad in all communities.

      Personally I have more to fear from a drunken 18 year old from a wealthy home, with a sense of entitlement, in the middle of Melbourne on a Saturday night, than I have for a Muslim going about their business. Near my home I actually watched Muslim youths playing soccer football and I threw the ball back and they thanked me politely.

      Let us concentrate on our own backyard and offer freedom loving refugees a home if they should seek it. If they pass the accepting nation’s moral and values standards, character, health (Physical and mental) and education tests then they should be welcomed.

      • BR, with all due respect, I believe that although your romanticized, aseptic version of the Western experience might play well down-under, most Americans who are aware out our own history, and that of North America [in general], well understand that man is an absolutely brutal animal who has brought forth atrocity after atrocity in the name of every damn thing.

        I don’t believe it really matters much how you wish to outfit your human specimen, as people come in all kinds of colors, shapes, sizes, and what-not. It is what resides within the temple at the top of his body that creates the need to do all the bizarre things he does.

        Get a group of these homo sapiens together and all Hell breaks loose.

        • The problem stems from leaders who have psychological issues such as attainment of power and low empathy (Psychopath) We need to recognise and root out these people early on.

          Student Political parties are a breeding ground for these people. Politicians should only come from society after they have lead a distinguished life of service. Not from a Party meetig where “Faceless” men choose the next “smooth forked tongued” Politician for the people to vote for.

          Then we won’t have war, because these puppets won’t do their “Masters” bidding. They will do what is good for the people.

          We have bred out violence. Lets breed out the “Puppet Psychopaths” so we nip the power of these 0.0001% control freaks.

        • Considering the fact that the U.S. can blow the entire planet to smithereens 100x’s over, I am not sure where you get the, “we have bred out violence.”

          What TPTB have done over the past 100 years is found more effective means to their end, i.e., waging undeclared, semi-transparent financial war.

          And, I am afraid you will never run out of people that will do EVERYTHING to get something for nothing.

        • Imp: I beg to differ — you seem to have given up on mankind, resigned to “Curse God and (watch people) die.”!

          Buddy’s* (presumably honest) report on Australia is not “romanticized”, and he is not creating a FANTASY to “play well”! He is DESCRIBING a society that works. Your “(not) outfit” — “all…colors, shapes,sizes and what-not” — but “within the temples”, is indisputably correct. But human brains are not programmed simply by aggregating a group, but rather one at a time by parents and community. This is a very complex subject, but let me offer a couple of anecdotes.

          Bill Gates built an enormous corporate empire and has dedicated most of his wealth (and Warren Buffett’s) to third world (mostly children’s) health and education. As anticipated, it appears that The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is performing** far better than U.N. and government bureaucracies.

          On the downside, U.S. health and social indicators — infant mortality, unwed pregnancies, school dropouts, imprisonment, unemployment, poverty, etc. — are in decline. But decline is not uniform across sub-cultures — not even close. African-Americans are at the bottom, then Hispanics, whites, and Asians on top***. Skin color? Not anymore. Discrimination held back blacks in most places for a long time after emancipation. Now it’s anti-family welfare and public housing, dumbed-down education, inciting class and race envy and anger for votes. It has climaxed this election year. The Democratic Party has abandoned Martin Luther King’s crusade for equal civil (Constitutional) rights and judging by character, not color. The current Democratic campaign is hate and fear non-blacks, and vote your skin color!

          * A nit-pick, Buddy: I suggest that motivation for Roman conquest of “barbarians” was personal political ambition, e.g., Julius Caesar & Gaul, and valuable loot, principally slaves — not to “tame” or integrate. [Exceptions were the Nile delta (for crops) and other resource areas].

          ** I’ve read that two big life-saving Gates innovations are mosquito netting and primitive toilets. High tech!

          *** I traveled to Washington D.C. in 1964, the year of Bobby Kennedy and M.L. King assassinations and riots (which were mostly, but not all, opportunistic “smash and grab”). The hotel doorman cautioned everyone not to walk to dinner, etc. When I asked my cab driver about his fears, he answered that at times and places he would be selective about picking up passengers; you guessed it — Asians safest, whites next, then blacks.

  12. Pingback: Too bad that it is so very, very profitable for so very, very few » Why Aren't You Outraged?

  13. Pingback: This is Blowback « Hawks5999

  14. The Saudi royal family is probably sweating bullets right now. It’ll get even more draconian there I imagine. And just image the SHTF if they are overthrown.

  15. To Aziz re your Sep 14 @ 23:17:34 & Sep 15 @ 00:57:00: So — we seem to agree that it all ls down to DETERRENCE — which, I agree, does not include preemptive first strike. Is Israel capability sufficient to deter ? You say “yes”, I think not – plus I argue “better safe than sorry”. [I hope you intellectuals sort of accept the crude formula Risk = Probability X Severity; well, nuclear war in the middle east would be severe].

    BTW today seems to be a day of binary choices. Muslim riots are NOT aimed at the U.S.(Obama WH pitch) vs. YES they are, with a video merely an excuse to strike on 9/11. It is ROMNEY’S pro-American/anti-Islamist statements that prolong the rioting vs. it is OBAMA’S foreign policy weakness. The U.S. government should continue to APOLOGIZE vs. we should threaten to CUT OFF $. Then there is the ole reality intrusion: both Suez Canal and Hormuz Strait — the lifelines of oil — are under Muslim de facto control. [I seem to remember that, a half-century ago or so, Egypt's closing the Suez Canal precipitated invasion by England, France and Israel, that ended only after a strong U.S. rebuke. With benefit of hindsight I think we were wrong.]

    • OOPS — the first line of my Sep 15 @ 03:51:22 post should end “…BOILS down”.

      SpruceGoose has raised a new* issue — “…ongoing theft of Palestinian lands and suppression of people ….”. Hindsight suggests that it was indeed a mistake to relocate post-WW II Jews there**. But that milk has been spilled for a long time!

      * New to these posts, not to the world!

      ** Looking at what the Israelis have achieved, my reaction is: what an asset to America they would have been!

  16. @Sammy
    You are either lying or severely ignorant. Where in the Quran does it allow lying, cheating, etc. to promote Islam? This kind of hateful bigotry from the likes of you produces the situation we are in. You are the problem.

    As a Muslim, let me state that the Muslim world would like nothing better than the West to get out of their lands, and keep your money with you.

    • Hello Imran,

      Can you please write here more often providing a Muslim’s perspective based on Koran principles of living. Economics is based on human decisions. Muslims have greater economic power now so their perspective needs to be considered.

      • Lieing is allowed in Islam provided it is done for one’s personal safety or the furtherance of Islam, and in such things as marital disputes.
        Some Muslims have not read their own book.

        • Undoubtedly some Muslims have not read their own books; I’m not one of them. The Quran says that if you are being severely tortured and falsely claim you are not a Muslim because of the torture, your forced recantation is not valid and legal you are still considered a Muslim, entitled to the legal privileges of membership in the Muslim community. All it talks about is the widely-accepted principle that confessions made under torture are not valid.
          The second point you are probably referring to is not in the Quran but in the ahadith, the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). It is the permissibility of a white lie to your wife in order to spare her feelings. The example mentioned is if your wife prepares a meal for you and asks if it tastes good, it is permissible to say it does even if it doesn’t. White lies are also permissible to prevent divorce. The instance was a third-party telling a wife to go talk to her husband because he was no longer angry with her, when in fact he was.

          So let’s review. From the invalidity of forced confessions under torture, and the permissibility of a little white lie to one’s wife if she asks if her cooking is good or equivalently if that dress makes her look fat, you deduce that Islam allows or advocates the most disgusting forms of lying or deception, to further its alleged aims of killing Christians.

          Who is the more truthful here, the Muslim or the Christian?

          This is the kind of Islamophobic smear job that creates the havoc we are all living under.

        • Good response! But how about being able to strike one’s wife, “Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them”; Do not take the Jews and Christians for friends…; “If a man changes his religion, then kill him” ; women are less intelligent than men; most of Hell’s occupants are women; a Christian being unable to testify in court against a Muslim; requiring two women to equal the testimony of one man; No particular punishment for killing a Christian; referring to Jews as monkeys and apes (some of them are);the blood of a kaffir being halal; Muhammad’s allowing the rape of hostages, participating in the murder of 400 Jewish hostages; allowing the murder of a personal enemy. There isn’t space here.

          Christianity contains within it many evil people (George W. Bush and his coterie of Neocons comes to mind), but these people are acting against the principles of Christianity, not in accordance with them. That is the difference.

          We started wars in Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and killed millions of people who were only defending their countries. That is evil pure and simple, but it is not Christianity.

        • Ron, what do you think about these passages from the Bible advocating violence?

          Numbers 31:17 “Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves” (murder, slavery)

          Kings 2:23 “And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the LORD. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them.” (violent divine retribution)

          Psalms 137:9 “Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.” (advocating murder of kids)

          Ezekial 9:5 “And to the others he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity: Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house. And he said unto them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain: go ye forth. And they went forth, and slew in the city.” (genocide against an entire city)

          Exodus 21:17 “And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death.”

          Matthew 15:1 “Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying, Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread. But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.”

          And there are many, many more verses like these in the Bible. I suppose Christianity is a religion borne in blood and violence and intolerance? If you’re going to try to paint the Quran in a negative light, might I suggest that it is unwise to use the Bible as the counter-example? When the pot calls the kettle black, do not expect the kettle to be impressed.

        • You are missing one essential point: Christ brought a new covenant. The eye for an eye, Old Testament religion was like Islam, intolerant, violent, merciless and unforgiving. Christ was born into this maelstrom of human evil, and the world has never been the same.
          Don’t misunderstand me. I realize the evil the U.S. has done in the world (you would have to be intentionally ignorant not to see it), but Islam is founded in violence, requires revenge, is intolerant of all other religions, proposes world conquest by violence, treats women as personal property, believes in theocracy, and its membership is largely composed of a people who are living in the 7th century.
          Honor killings, female mutilation, beheading and the amputation of limbs, stoning to death, are unique to Islamic societies, and the simple fact is Christianity and Islam are diametrically opposed in their basic tenets.
          America has done much evil in the world, and I am totally opposed to intervention in the affairs of other sovereign nations. Islamic societies must be left to decide their own fates, not us. All the West must do is leave these places, and their people will fall on each other like wolves.

  17. Another very fine post, Aziz. Much of what you say was outlined by Dwight Eisenhower in his farewell “military industrial complex” speech 51 years ago. It is well worth watching for anyone who has not, and not just for what Ike says but also as an example of what U.S. presidents were once like before the “great dumbing down.”

    Regarding Israel’s nuclear capabilities, from what I have been able to read on the internet it appears they have the capacity to utterly erase Iran and the Persian race from the face of the Earth a dozen times over at the press of a button (or several…) But apparently, judging by what seems to be their thirst to strike first, they don’t put all that much faith in their ability to deter Iran. I frankly don’t understand why they seem so worried about Iran. Their talk about giving Iran “a bloody nose” sounds like madness. Of course, their idea that they can live safely and happily via their ongoing theft of Palestinian lands and suppression of people is pretty daft also….

      • “Of course, their idea that they can live safely and happily via their ongoing theft of Palestinian lands and suppression of people is pretty daft also….” what is daft is this description of reality. Firstly, nothing was stolen. Israel won these territories from Jordan in the 1967 war, which was initiated by the Jordanians. How call you call that theft? Secondly, Israel was willing to give almost all of the territories to the Palestinians (I’m not saying give them “back to the Palestinians” because the Palestinians never owned them and never had a country). Thirdly, at the moment, 95% of the area that was concurred during the 1967 war is governed by the Palestinian Authority – a wholly corrupt and inapt group of murderers and anti-Semites that enjoy the support of idiots in the US and in Europe. Fourthly, the PLO was formed years BEFORE the 1967 war, and Arab leaders working with Hitler, plotted the slaughter of Meddle East Jews before Israel was even founded. So pointing at the 1967 territories as an issue that has any bearing on what is happening today is wrong.

        • Re Gilad’s history of Palestine, PLO: “Facts are stubborn things”, but frequently buried or simply forgotten. History (experience, the inductive partner of deductive hypothesis) is the best (only?) teacher, but only when written and interpreted honestly.

        • Probably should add: “Don’t confuse me with facts, my mind is made up.” “If ignorance is bliss (or curries favor with professors, politician/bureaucrat entitlement-dispensers, et al), ’tis folly to be wise.” Jefferson’s “I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”

  18. How about the assumption that this (the violent protests by Muslims) is exactly what is required by the people who direct history? It is not something that just happens…it is manufactured. The west needs enemies, it has actively created a Muslim ‘enemy’…building up the Muslim Brotherhood (during the Arab Spring) while at the same time warning us that they are creating a Muslim khilafat. The Bolsheviks were helped by Wall Street…

    see
    http://vho.org/aaargh/fran/livres10/SUTTONbolch.pdf

    The Muslim Brotherhood are a phony enemy. They legitimise Banking calling it “Islamic Banking” and they help the western military industrial complex and its financial system to become powerful. Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda were/are a phony enemy.

    Muslims are being played….the mobs in the streets are fools. They ought to concentrate on building up their power, uniting under one leader who does not embody democracy or banking….only this will genuinely undermine the western capitalist system.

  19. Israel is a warmonger (little poor defence less) Isreal even making Isreal look like a tiny bit of land surrounded by powerful enemies on maps, is just a propaganda technique. Israel I think was deliberately inserted into the ME by people who direct history as a red herring, a kind of foil. Ben Gurion used a similar technique when he wrote in his journal that they schemed to get Egypt to attack first..so they could take land without looking like the aggressor.

    An Iraqi Jew who migrated to Israel in the 1950s
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naeim_Giladi

    Giladi has strong views on Zionism and its negative effects and his article begins with the following passage: “I write this article for the same reason I wrote my book: to tell the American people, and especially American Jews, that Jews from Islamic lands did not emigrate willingly to Israel; that, to force them to leave, Jews killed Jews; and that, to buy time to confiscate ever more Arab lands, Jews on numerous occasions rejected genuine peace initiatives from their Arab neighbors. I write about what the first prime minister of Israel called ‘cruel Zionism’. I write about it because I was part of it.”

    Giladi’s position that the 1950–1951 Baghdad bombings were “perpetrated by Zionist agents in order to cause fear amongst the Jews, and so promote their exodus to Israel” is shared by a number of anti-Zionist authors, including the Israeli Black Panthers (1975), David Hirst (1977), Wilbur Crane Eveland (1980), Uri Avnery (1988), Ella Shohat (1986), Abbas Shiblak (1986), Marion Wolfsohn (1980), and Rafael Shapiro (1984).[5] In his article, Giladi notes that this was also the conclusion of Wilbur Crane Eveland, a former senior officer in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) who outlined that allegation in his book “Ropes of Sand”

    • Well, yeah. I don’t really agree that people have any ability to successfully “plan” history (economic planning problem), but I certainly think there are a lot of hidden forces trying to influence history.

      Each Islamic mob in the street that is coming out to protest this silly film made by a former drug-dealing FBI informant is playing into supporting Mitt Romney’s ultimate election and imminent war on Iran.

      And yes — one of the very many tragedies of the 20th century was the exodus of the Jews from the wider Arab lands where they had lived peacefully for thousands of years all because Zionism made this ancient integrationism untenable. Unfortunately while Zionism was an appropriate reaction to European antisemitism, but it upset a delicate middle eastern balance

      • Jews Poles and Ukrainians lived side by side in Galicia (Now Western Ukraine and Eastern Poland). Evil people with an agenda stirred up the pot, and religious (Jewish, Catholic and Greek Catholic) hatred resulted in Pogroms and other ethnic hostilities.

        Secular societies work well. Australia is very secular and we have no ethnic tensions. But if certain people had the ability to influence it could change overnight.

        It is easy to manipulate the young to forget what life was like before the strife.

        • Buddy re your Sep 15 @ 20:50:11: I assume the “evil people with an agenda” who destroyed the peaceful ethnic/religious coexistence were the Soviets, whose “religion*” was Communist subjugation by every means, including divide and conquer. The Bolsheviks/Soviets, having hijacked a revolution against Czarist tyranny, already held ABSOLUTE POWER.

          In the 1920s, with Germany ravaged by post-WW I hyperinflation, Hitler’s Nazi (national socialist) Party came to power in a legal democratic election; then the legislature legally granted Chancellor Hitler ABSOLUTE POWER. “The rest is history”!

          In America we are facing the same threat: indoctrination of Obama with the ideology of ABSOLUTE POWER by Communists Alinski, Davis and Ayres and by theocrats/racists Farrakhan and Wright, is packaged as “redistribution” and “diversity”. Reelection of a Marxist, Muslim, racist, corrupt ideologue President will be the END of the America’s democratic Constitutional republic — unless a Republican/Tea party Senate is able to reject additional anti-Constitution Supreme Court appointments and, with the House, override vetoes and ultimately impeach and convict President Obama for “high crimes and misdemeanors”.

          American voters should wake up!

        • “Evil people with an agenda stirred up the pot, and religious (Jewish, Catholic and Greek Catholic) hatred resulted in Pogroms and other ethnic hostilities.” almost sounds like the Jews committed those pogroms. and it had nothing to do with religion. Antisemitism is alive and present also in Japan,where you have no Jews and very little religion. Antisemitism is a psychopathy, not a religious thing.

  20. Reaction to Sydney Australia riots. Melbourne is more measured. I think it is a youth culture testosterone thing. This is what we need to focus on to win the war on terror. Calming young angry minds with say “Rock music”

  21. hahahah our inept ASIO (CIA) employing stupid Gen Z idiots for their spy ring.

    The heads should role at ASIO for employing such a lazy spy. Using U instead of you in a text shows how lazy and careless this Spy is. If you are going to be a spy, at least use code to meet in person, not blurt all over the phone. You should anticipate the messages being intercepted. At least by a jealous girlfriend, who may rat on her boyfriend. Idiots.

    The Australian Public sector is a bureaucracy of idiots.

    http://www.theage.com.au/technology/technology-news/islamic-centre-spy-was-outed-on-facebook-20120913-25v4y.html

  22. Excellent perspective! Nature abhors a vacuum. If men lack faith in the governance of the world by a Faithful Creator, they will make every effort to govern it themselves. Death and chains are the tools of choice. It is impossible to have life and liberty without True Faith.

    “When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.”
    -Proverbs 16:7 (NASB)

  23. There were two presidential candidates that advocated getting out of the mideast. The first and most well known was Ron Paul and the second is Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party. Paul can’t win so Johnson MUST WIN.

  24. Of course, we should get out. People, such as Pat Buchanan and myself, spoke out against the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq a decade ago. It had to be obvious to anyone with any knowledge of the Middle East that occupying these primitive places was a horrible mistake. Apparently, the Bush administration, then the Obama administration thought there was some profit to be had by the continuing waste of lives and resources on both sides.
    Invading these countries will rank as one of the greatest foreign policy mistakes ever made and, unfortunately, no one will be a held accountable for it.
    China, meanwhile, gets all the oil it needs without a single shot being fired.
    What did we do to deserve such people as the intellectually challenged George W. Bush, a man who did more harm to our country than all our enemies?

    • Well Rocket and Ron, you have figured out a simple scapegoating and simple solution to a super-complex problem. So you should have no difficulty making a simple binary choice: neither Bush nor Johnson has the slightest chance of being elected president in November — it’s either Obama or Romney.

        • Of course! Constructive change and, more urgently, halting Obama’s drive to socialism, bankruptcy, compromise with Islam (probably a series of “Munichs”), disarmament, shredding of citizens’ Constitutional rights, discarding Constitutional limits to government powers, etc. Before his 2008 GENERAL election campaign, we KNOW Obama disavowed any loyalty to the USA, supported many anti-American movements, and endorsed racism and socialism/Marxism. In office, he has put those values into practice as much/as fast AS HE COULD get away with. He has reversed every important general election promise: deficit, employment, domestic energy, transparency, bipartisanship, etc. An “open mike” caught him promising anti-American Russia, “after the election I will have more flexibility”.

          On the other side of the inequality, Romney would not face a Democratic legislature as in Massachusetts, but even there he pared government expansion and deficits. He has pledged to end Obamacare, and has chosen a VP (Ryan) who is Congress’s expert (second to Ron Paul) on government fraud, waste and abuse. Unlike Obama, Romney has no foreign/military record, but there is every reason (Bolton, Rice, McCain, et al) to be assured that he will follow Peace through Strength, deterrence, etc. Energy independence is no sweat if we shed Obama’s wealthy environmental lobby, anti-oil/free enterprise ideology and Arab and Venezuela cronies.

          If I’m wrong, please advise. If not, please help take our country back.

    • Addendum to my Sep 18 @ 00:44:01 reply to Ron: A lesson learned — in 1992 Ross Perot sure as hell offered constructive change, and, unlike Paul and Johnson, had the wealth to mount a third party campaign; I voted for Perot and elected the Clintons.

  25. Trouble with following the religion to peace in Islam’s case, is Mohammed was a warrior, who beheaded others by the hundreds. His disciples often expanded Islam with the sword rather than through peaceful means as this was the model of Mohammed. It seems quite different from any model of truly peaceful men like Jesus, Siddhartha or Confucious or Lao-Tsu or those that follow them …

    • What you say is true, and I have read the Koran, but not all. In the literal interpretation it was violent. However perhaps the English translation was not correct. War, fight may mean struggle to live a better life. Etc. The sword may have been a simple way to convert simple people to understand the moral precepts i.e. The sword is a wrong way to do it but not in the context of seeking unity for the greater good of preventing violence in the future. What scares me is Christian fundamentalists misread the Bible, just like Muslim fundamentalists.

      • How many murders, executions, amputations, enslavements have Christian fundamentalists committed lately? They send missionaries, not suicide bombers, to interact with foreign civilians. As I posted on one of the Azizonomics threads, whatever one interprets from the often-ambiguous Koran, modern-day Mullahs and Imams preach/brainwash the duty to convert, enslave or kill.

    • Both Bush and Obama have proclaimed Islam a peaceful religion, and both were dead wrong. Muhammed married a six year old girl, gave captive women to his friends as gifts, partook in the murder of several hundred Jewish captives, declared himself exempt from moral prohiibitions against robbing caravans, said, “If a man changes his religion, then kill him,” and “Take not the Jews and Christians for friends, for they are friends of each other, and whoever takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them, and Allah does not guide the unjust people,”
      Stating that jihad does not literally apply because the prophet meant a spiritual war, not a violent physical one, is simply so much chin music.

    • Trouble with following the religion to peace in Islam’s case, is Mohammed was a warrior,

      Muhammad (peace be upon him) was many things including businessman and statesman. As head of state, he led the Muslim army into battle – on the front lines mind you, not from the back – when the Muslims were attacked by their pagan enemies. But mostly he was an ascetic who spent the vast majority of his time in contemplative meditation and prayer. And like the other holy men you mention (and Islam does regard them as holy with the possible exception of Confucius), Muhammad cared nothing for wealth and gave away ALL his money. He routinely gave away all his food to destitute beggars who came to his door, Muslim or not. Read the biography of Muhammad by M. Haykal or Martin Lings if you want to begin to grasp who Muhammad was and what he taught.

      who beheaded others by the hundreds.

      This happened only once (and there is some dispute as to the accuracy of the event among scholars) when a Medinan Jewish tribe allied to the Muslims betrayed them during war to the Meccan pagans. It was the second or third instance of flat-out treason by this particular tribe. The leaders of that tribe begged to let a former tribesman pass sentence on them, and he judged them according to Jewish law, which was death for the adult Jewish males of the tribe, each of which had an individual duty to protect Medina from invaders, i.e. the Meccans.
      IN VIRTUALLY ALL OTHER CASES, MUHAMMAD FORGAVE HIS ENEMIES. When he conquered Mecca, he forgave everyone and allowed them to keep their property. He specifically commanded his followers not to take any revenge of any kind, and they didn’t.

      His disciples often expanded Islam with the sword rather than through peaceful means as this was the model of Mohammed.

      This is not really correct. Islam spread mainly by Sufism in the east, where 70% of the Muslims live, and trade in Africa. The old empires of Byzantine and Persia attacked the new upstart desert-dwellers, and the Muslims defeated both. In truth, the new Muslim rulers did not really want the conquered peoples of Iran and Syria/Lebanon to convert, because as Muslims they would be entitled to charity of the Muslim state. As a poor person or slave you are far, far better off as a Muslim (not to mention certain human rights of Muslim brotherhood), so guess what? Vast numbers of the poor and underclass converted to Islam among conquered people. Basically, Islam was a much better, fairer, kinder alternative to what they had, so why not convert?

      It seems quite different from any model of truly peaceful men like Jesus, Siddhartha or Confucious or Lao-Tsu or those that follow them

      The major difference you see is that these individuals excepting Confucius were secular. Islam is not. It conceives of a natural way of living given by God. That way of living includes political and socioeconomic norms, and it includes self-defense. It includes fighting all forms of oppression and standing up to unjust rulers.

      If you have other reasonable or sincere questions about Islam or Muslims, go ahead and ask, but I’ll state in advance that I don’t have time for bigotry and hate.

      • I have a reasonable and sincere question: is the following historical generality correct?

        A schoolmate and lifelong friend — an American, Christian (sort of), distinguished American economic analyst — retired and became a serious analyst-historian of religions. His overall conclusion, from analysis of secular behavior not theology, is that Islam was once the most — and Christianity (with inquisitions, crusades, witch-burning) the least — tolerant, erudite, civilized religion-culture; then, at some time* during/after “the middle ages”, they “switched” — Muslims becoming bad guys and Christians good guys per modern civilized standards.

        * I’m uncertain about the time, but his analysis wasn’t.

        • Re your question, if I understand it correctly, no I would not agree its correct. Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Hitler and Auschwitz, and the greatest evil in history – Western imperialism and colonialism – were all committed by Christians in modern times. The World Wars were Christian wars. By “modern civilized standards” Christians are certainly not the good guys. On the other hand, Muslims as a group are demonized for the actions of hundreds out of 1.25+ billion.

        • One can certainly argue that we Christians have a very bloody history, but I suspect that has more to do with who we are as a species than the fact that we are Christian.
          The difference between us lies in the fact that we as Christians have failed to live up to the tenets of our religion, while Islam was born in violence, propogated in violence and advocates the use of violence as a means of conflict resiolution.
          The prophet said, “Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them.” Christ said, “Blessed are the peacemakers…”
          The differences between these religions are irreconcilable, and the best policy for both is to keep one another at arm’s length in the interest of peace.

        • Unbelievable Ron. That is the supreme example of taking words out of context. That verse in the Quran was revealed during a battle, and referred specifically and exclusively to only those pagans that AT THAT VERY MOMENT were trying to kill the Prophet and Muslims in war. The verses immediately preceding it make it beyond obviously clear. It has always been understood as such among all Islamic scholars. Furthermore there are over a hundred verses in the Quran that advocate making peace with the pagans whenever possible and forgiving them. (Have you bothered to actually read the Quran?)

          When the verse you mention was revealed there were in effect treaties between the Muslims with other pagan tribes, where not did the Muslims not fight them, not only did the Muslims leave them alone, but the Muslims had the duty to protect and aid them against other tribes. It is like claiming that if a Marine in the middle of a battle with Al Qaida says “Shoot them”, it means the U.S. government advocates shooting every single Muslim on the planet.

          The main differences between Islam and Christianity are two: (1) Islam does not believe in a private realm for an individual or Ceasar, that is beyond or separate from God’s jurisdiction. All of life and the universe is under God’s Law. (2) Islam is logically rational, whereas Christianity believes in a being that is both mortal and immortal at the same time. Other than these two differences – and for some they are huge and for others they are not – Islam and Christianity are similar at their core.
          Think of Islam as a theistic alternative to Christianity. If you want to believe in God without the irrationality, and with socioeconomic justice, then Islam is a good alternative option to explore.

        • Imran, re your Sep 19 @ 14:26:03 reply to my question about Muslim and Christian violence and tolerance over two millennia: Thanks for your prompt answer. However you didn’t understand my question (mostly my fault), and you did grossly misrepresent 20th century history (your fault).

          World War II was aggression by Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany. The former was a military oligarchy of an Emperor-worship, Buddhist — whatever — nation, but NOT Christian. The latter was a mostly Christian population under absolute rule by a racist/anti-Jewish/fanatical dictator (Auschwitz, e.g.), (who did, BTW, find willing allies among Muslim rulers). Bombing of German and Japanese cities was mass carnage, but necessary to end the fighting. Nuking the two Japanese cities was correctly judged to be the most merciful/least horrible solution. Western colonialism was phased out after WW II, including allowing the Sheiks and tribal kings to take over oil, mining, etc. assets.

          “Actions of hundreds” is not even close to an honest description of global Muslim violence. For example, how many currently are in the streets committing violence and chanting “death to Americans”?

  26. Thanks for pointing out the foreign policy that makes them so angry, everyone there probably knows someone who has been killed, meanwhile Washington wants us all to believe a film, and solely a film is responsible.

    • Today (Monday in USA) I heard on TV a noted foreign policy observer say that the U.S. was the ONLY government believing (purporting to believe?) that the FILM was the cause of Muslim anti-American violence. He cited a Libyan official’s announcement that investigation showed that it was planned long ago for 9/11. BTW — can anyone recall the Obama administration’s ever blaming or criticizing ANY Muslim government or organization, other than designated outlaws Al Qaida and Taliban?

      • OOPS — I didn’t finish. Should have added this footnote to “….ANY Muslim government or organization”: * Not counting unorthodox Muslim dictators of Libya, Egypt and Syria; but including Hezbollah, PLO, and especially Obama’s much-admired Muslim Brotherhood.

        • Another addendum –this one a question: What about Shia vs. Sunni (and sub-sects of each) control of all these militant Muslim entities — especially Muslim Brotherhood? And can anyone answer that question for Obama’s father, Farrakhan, Malcolm X, and the various U.S. Muslim organizations?

  27. Maybe it is time for the Western world, while it is still strong, to wipe out all Muslims – yes, I mean death to them all – even my nice Muslim neighbor. Otherwise, in but a few years, Islam will take over the world and it will surely mean all Christian deaths!

  28. Its like you learn my mind! You appear to understand so much approximately this, such as you wrote the guide in it or something. I feel that you just can do with some p.c. to pressure the message home a little bit, however other than that, that is fantastic blog. A fantastic read. I will certainly be back.

  29. Interesting post, albeit somewhat marred by the cesspool of ignorance and confirmation bias that is the comments thread. The trouble with a non-mainstream blog like yours, Aziz, is that it draws out the cranks, conspiracy nuts, and delusional ideologues like rats to moldy cheese. The sad part is that your blog has so much potential for exchange of ideas, and yet it is mostly used by those who have all the answers and simply need an excuse to regurgitate the same tired rhetoric while plugging their ears.

    /smh

    • Q: So use this thread to give us the truth about Islam, without “tired rhetoric” and slander such as “cranks, conspiracy nuts, delusional ideologues”. Most of us have unplugged ears, but we OBSERVE what is being perpetrated in the name of Allah and left uncondemned by Muslim Mullahs (see Ron’s Sep 21 reply to your Sep 21 post). Were Arafat, Saddam, Ghadaffi, Osama, et al Buddhists, Hindus, Jews or Christians?

  30. What not 1 in 1,000,000 recognize is the moral dilemma posed by the United State’s own warfare upon its most innocent victims, the unborn. Over 58 million slaughtered. As God used the Middle Eastern tribes to punish Israel for her infidelities, so God is now punishing the U.S. for its sociopathic suicide. As we have chosen more luxury and money over most human life, and homosexuality, divorce, drugs, rock ‘n roll, rampant licentious imagery over internet porn and daily cable TV, shacking up and fornication are the order of the day, and virtually everyone has turned his or her back to Catholic teaching, why are any of you confused over the upheaval of Islam toward Israel and the U.S.? We have earned it by our sins, which almost every one of you will protest, “There is no such thing as sin, but you offend us all by your (honest, objective) statements and analysis.”

    Pray the Rosary. A grave chastisement is coming. And when the 3 days darkness occurs, as it did in the Bible at least once, and the denizens of Hell are released to unleash their terror upon the disbelieving secular worldlings, don’t say you weren’t warned.

  31. All wars are winable. If the ‘warfighters’ are allowed to fight. Take political correctness out of the battle field. Having been ‘there’, fight like ‘Grant’ and ‘Churchill’ dictated. Up to and including fighting like the US did in WW2. But of course no nukes in this case. Just brute force, End the war as quickly as possible. In this way casulaties will be less in the long run.

    • Yes, all wars are winable provided one is willing to pay the price for victory. We could have destroyed the rice crop in Vietnam and starved the population into submission, if you can call that victory.
      At some point the cost for total war so far exceeds the advantages of ‘winning’ that it is not worthy of consideration, something we need to keep in mind next time some moron in the White House decides to volunteer your life to further his political career.
      That so many are willing to follow such a leader is truly mind-boggling.

  32. I think the riots are more an end product of overpopulation. Over the past 30 odd years the economic growth has caused an increase in population in many countries. In some countries the under 30s age group is out of proportion to the rest of the age groups and that is usually where the trouble starts. Egypt has had over 100% population since they built the Aswan dam. Now with the planet poised to start running out of food these types of riots are going to get worse.

    • World population increases have, more or less, been compensated for by increased food production and new technology. I can’t see any reason why we should expect this to continue forever. At some point the problem of over-population will manifest itself in disastrous ways we haven’t yet imagined.

  33. Watch the PBS special about the censorship the Smothers Brothers faced. You may ask, “But what is the relevance?” Well, the stuff they were poking fun at was impolitic at the time.

    1968. Look at the parallels. But at the same time there is a strange dichotomy as well. Vietnam – a quagmire. Afghanistan – a quagmire. Instead of the blacks rioting at the Democratic convention in Chicago, we have a black (well, half anyway) Democrat in the White House whose adopted home is Chicago.

    There is a stiff Republican running for president and he is running against another liar. In case you don’t know, LBJ used the “Gulf of Tonkin” as the pretense to escalate the war in Vietnam; the “Gulf of Tonkin” NEVER HAPPENED. He knew that the bombing would be what won the war against North Vietnam. So much so, he was directing the war . . . making all of the decisions. He was killing HIS Bin Laden by remote control too.

    Except of course there were 500,000 troops, mostly men, in harm’s way and they had to go! No volunteer Army then! One was conscripted and sent to die “for His Country”. Sound familiar? Only thing that is different now is that the phisically and spiritually wounded are seen as heroes; you see the difference don’t you? Then it was the Commies now it’s the Muslim fanatics.

    LBJ’s so called “Great Society” saw government as the answer to society’s problems. He was a lot like Obama IS . . . take from those that have and give to those that don’t. That philosophy is much better than “a strong economy lifts all boats.”

    There is no dignity in standing in a line waiting for the government to decide what cubbyhole to put you in. Then standing in line to get your deserves . . . then, just when you think you’ve finally made it, you are stand in another line because the window closed just before you got there.

    Black society in America doesn’t feel empowered like they should. They own slavery as if they were the only society or race to suffer the indignity. Well, we will all . . . black, white, Hispanic, Jew, Asian . . . pick one . . . will know what slavery is if we continue on the current path. We’ll see how kind history is to Obama when people realize that his monetary policy is killing their wealth. The poor are in for a rough ride as are all of us and our heirs.

    Obama has a grand vision to make energy from fossil fuels so expensive that it will be painful to remain “addicted” to foreign oil. The joke is on the poor though. Unlike Lord Obama, they will die from exposure because they can’t afford the oil. It’s a stupid premise! I know there is enough oil and natural gas in the US and the immediately surrounding land that there is only to pump it from the ground. I also know that future technology will eventually solve our problems.

    As the economies of the world falter, food prices will explode. If you think that the Mullahs have control now, wait until the wrath of the starving hoards are unleashed. The Jews would do well to cede Israel to the Muslims . . . the only thing that will “save” them is the scorched Earth. Several million Israelis are going to be no match for the sea of hostile Muslims that will engulf them! Iran’s does have a nuke and the USA can’t stop it!

    Everyone thinks it about religious fervor or oil . . . pish posh! It is about stomachs. Period. In about 30 years, the mineable phosphorus will be gone. Why is that important? It is one of the two main components of fertilizer. The same fertilizer we are currently using to grow crops for erzatz gasoline (thank you visionary George W. Bush!).

    I told you the parallels were spooky!

    Well, I can only hope this ends well for the Republican . . . unlike Richard Nixon . . . I am pretty sure he’ll never have to say, “I am not a crook.” Let’s see if he can get us out of the mideast without having the whole house of cards coming down. I doubt it but I know Obama cannot . . . I AM CERTAIN!

    I am part of the 8% . . . the 8% richest people on the planet. I have access to $20,000 worth of assets and that makes me richer than 92% of the world population. The 99% idiots don’t know anything! They are babies with their cell phones and I-pads and air conditioning, and cable TV and “bigscreens”. Disenfranchised my ass!

    And if that egalitarian nitwit theorist and college professor . . . no, not Obama . . . Elizabeth Warren . . . doesn’t think big business is a “human being”, what the hell would she call government? What with its narrow definitions and laws that allow no grey areas for us to inhabit and can brook no quarter with anything but conformity . . . rigidity.

    We are doomed to repeat the mistakes that don’t teach us lessons.

  34. Barry: Your post is not written in my (old fashioned) style, but, as best I can tell, you correctly understand a whole helluva lot! Permit me to “translate” a few of your points:

    Obama’s “redistribution” is taking (by force — confiscating) wealth from some and giving it to others after skimming some off the top. “Taxing” is taking from all to pay for public services.

    When redistribution/entitlements finally bankrupt governments, it will be the dependents, not the taxpayers, who suffer first and worst.

    Stomachs, food and fertilizer are indeed what it is all about — in some places now and eventually everywhere.

    • Yes, government does confiscate money, but it may be a mistake to say that those from whom it is taken had a right to it in the first place.
      I have no problem with confiscating money from people like Bernie Madoff, Richard Fuld, Ivan Boesky, Michael Milkin, Stephen Weinberg, Sheldon Adelson, Jack Abramoff, James Cayne, Hank Greenberg, Lloyd Blankfein, Sandford Weil, Sam Waksal, Dennis Levine, Daniel Rothenberg, the Koch brothers, Sam Israel, Michael Bloomberg and a thousand others.
      It is more than obvious that great wealth accumulated in fewer hands, particularly when it is obtained by monopoly capitalism, corrupt bankers or financial slight of hand, has more political power than the masses and constitutes a threat to the kind of democracy our forebears had in mind.

      • Ron, surely you don’t think that it is fair for government to take your money and mine for no reason other than that a few don’t have a right to theirs. We have laws, regulations, courts and fines to do that. Government — lawmakers, regulators, prosecutors, and judges — are too often corrupt politicians instead of honest referees. We citizens must pay more attention and take back our governments — participate in a Tea Party of volunteer ciizens!

    • Oh Ron . . . you blame all of our problems on evil greed and criminal activity. You are just dead wrong!

      Sure there is greed and even “evilness” but the primary source of our grief is the loss of control of our government. It was never intended by the founders to be the entity we all must call to for our health and well-being. Nope, good old self-reliance, hard work and an ethos that we are free to choose how we conduct our lives as long as our conduct does not deprive another of a similar expectation and right.

      Where we got into trouble is allowing the government to lay an “income” tax. It is the single most intrusive (to date anyway with Obama-care being even more threatening) activity of the government. It allows the government to use its force to club us into submission. If we don’t obey? Well, jail, destruction and destitution soon follow.

      Further, idiotic and unworkable “plans” put forward by politicians and bureaucrats who have an unlimited amount of OPM (other people’s money) get us overarching control of education by them (hijacked by unions); bloated police departments that have become militarized and always brag about the big drug bust and asset seizure being a blow against the criminals who seem to multiply like rats in spite of their efforts while children are being traded as sex-slaves; ethanol, I mean . . . grow food for ersatz fuel when the pure physics of the plan PROVE that it is unworkable. How stupid is that?

      The real reason that our society is falling apart right in front of us is that politicians and bureaucrats lord it over us to control our lives because we are all too pathetically stupid to manage without there gentle tutelage and ever prescient and perfect foresight.

      Can you hear the sarcasm or am I being too subtle?

      Consider this: A young man of 18 years has just graduated at the top of his class from high school. He was never very popular and was generally shunned as an outcast by the “popular” clique. He goes to the prom and he is approached by someone at the party he doesn’t know well but has always admired from afar. Maybe a girl or a boy he was attracted to but to socially awkward to approach.

      Being needy, socially, he is talked into doing a little bit of drugs for the first time in his life. Later, as he is driving home, he is stopped by the police for a minor traffic infraction and in the subsequent (unnecessary and potentially unconstitutional) search of his car a small packet with a single rock of cocaine is found. His life has just been destroyed. If he happens to be black, well the hope in his life is completely wiped out by one moment of 18-year-old indiscretion.

      He is charged with FELONY possession of a controlled substance (because there is no non-felony possession of crack). He is CONVICTED of the charge. He can no longer join the military, vote, possess a gun or ammunition, apply for a government grant, get education benefits (which shouldn’t even exist . . . but I digress) and his hopes of a good job and a family have been flushed down the toilet.

      Cocaine in any of its forms would likely have never done so much destruction to his life. And all of this because an ill-informed president that was paranoid about the future of the country deemed it so harmful that society would surely collapse under the weight of drug use. Ironic isn’t it? Nixon went on to commit heinous crimes against the country and individuals and he walked free. But the boy grew into a bitter and jaded man with no hope for the future. (No, this isn’t about my life.)

      Ironic isn’t it that the president that declared, “I did inhale . . . that was the point”, has his “justice” department enforcing laws that fly in the face of “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness” and ignore the GOD GIVEN RIGHT I have to determine the course of my life and how I use MY body. I can fling it out of an airplane, or use it plummet down a salome, or cut off my penis and become a “woman” but I cannot use any drug I want for any purpose I choose.

      I can drink alcohol and stay completely drunk 24/7 but catch me with another drug and it is jail and treatment for me! I could consume a goddamn pint of gasoline and the government would only interfere if it made me high instead of killing me.

      RANT . . . RANT . . . RANT . . .

      I had the misfortune to be charged with a very serious crime that I did not commit. In the subsequent 8 months, I stayed in two different municipal jails. In the county where I live, the ratio of blacks and Hispanics is relatively average so most of the inmates were white like me. In the other jail, where the racial make up of the county is not primarily black the ratio of blacks to whites and Hispanics was about 95 to 1 including the jail staff.

      You see, I live in Cobb County Georgia: a mostly white and Republican suburb of Atlanta. The other jail was the Fulton County Detention Facility on Rice Street. I was shocked and dismayed to see the disproportional number of black faces given that Fulton County is not primarily black. It was especially heartbreaking to find out that most of those detained were from the south side of Atlanta where many blacks live.

      What I found was collectively the most discouraging result of an entire segment of the population deprived of the decent schools and opportunity I had in the 1960′s. Even those younger than me had either failed because of the system or because of the victim mentality that permeated it.

      My cellmate (thankfully a gentle giant of a guy) was not a stupid person: not by a long shot! He had only the misfortune, at the age of 7, to have seen his father murdered. According to Jeffery, he was a good and loving father who was working hard as a mason to better his life and that of his kids. He was gunned down in a case of mistaken identity.

      He also had the misfortune to be poor and black. Jeff’s only crime was bad judgment having been accused of rape by a jilted woman. She was later proved to be mentally unstable and Jeff was released but he might have well stayed. He was also a mason until the invasion of Mexicans undercut him and outworked him and he could no longer find a job.

      That wrecked his marriage by destroying his self-esteem and leaving him to have to turn to government and relatives to support his kids. He has been in and out of jail on a few minor charges since but somehow he has managed to press on. I have lost touch but I occasionally search the sea of humanity on the Fulton County Sheriff’s website to find his booking record. I am still both saddened and amazed by the fact that most of the mugshots are of black faces.

      So, I would ask that you direct your rightful anger at the true source of the sad state of our country and economy. Government manipulation of the monetary supply by the central bank will wipe out a lot of our debts and at the same time wiping out your assets through rampant and devastating inflation. The “monetizing” of the debt is done by the central bank printing dollars and buying government debt (bonds).

      Read up on how Great Britain couldn’t pay its massive debt after World War I. A war fought by imperialist governments and “royal families” over a crime committed in Bosnia-Herzegovina wherein Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria (heir apparent to the throne of Austria-Hungary) was assassinated. It was ended, in part, by the influenza pandemic of 1918-1920. It is pretty interesting to study because the World War was not foreseen as an outcome. And that was another digression . . .

      Will an assignation lead to WWIII? Parallels abound!

      I could go on and on and on . . .

  35. This what I get for not finishing what I start. Obviously this whole diatribe should have been posted a couple of comments up! Sorry ‘mantrid’.

  36. How strange that Obama’s enormous ego contributed to the mess yet throughout all of this discussion he gets a free pass. He is still convinced that he can sweet-talk anybody into anything, including the fanatic Muslims. And why not? It’s worked on the uninformed-by-choice American electorate. He’s also committed to reducing the perception of our leadership throughout the world. Then he crowns it all by insisting that we reduce our oil use, not when alternatives are available and practical, but by making it unavailable and expensive. Think Solyndra supported and pipelines rejected.
    If a larger war is in the cards, he will have stumbled us into it.

  37. David: A super summary! But your opening “How STRANGE” must be facetious — most of the media is part of the Obama/Democrat campaign! That’s no excuse for your well-named “uninformed-by-choice” American electorate, not to mention the racist, socialist, lazy, spoiled, etc. We must wake up and take bck our country!

  38. The problem is Israel, if the US could pressurise the Israelis to make peace with its Arab neighbours and give back occupied territories then the reason for Arab militancy would greatly disappate. This is unlikely because there are too many Jews with big money and influence in America and other western countries.
    With the US shortly to become energy independent (shale oil and gas) there will be no need to maintain the oil flow from the middle east which should allow the US more flexibilty in dealing with the whole middle east situation.
    Finally America cannot afford to police the world anymore it’s too expensive, crushing the dollar and making life a misery for a lot of its citizens (the 47% on food stamps).
    Wake up Uncle Sam, force the Israelis to give back land, make peace then withdraw all the GI’s and bring them back home.
    Le Brit.

    • I think forcing anyone to do anything is not usually an answer. It certainly hasn’t worked for us in places like Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. Instead I would suggest we learn to let some scenes work themselves out. When the smoke clears above the rubble, there will be a few more who realize that RPGs, machine guns and bombs don’t necessarily solve any problems.

  39. Pingback: Bush 3 vs Bush 4 « azizonomics

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s