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Buy this book (not just because it contains two of my op-eds):
Americans on Politics, Policy, and Pop Culture:
The 101 Best Opinion Editorials From OpEds.com


An Interview With the G-Man:
My first (hopefully not last) experience in live radio, being interviewed by G. Gordon Liddy!



Perspective
Joe Mariani

Number of people freed from totalitarian dictatorships by precision use of American military force under George W. Bush:
50 million in just two years

Number of people freed from totalitarian dictatorships by anti-American Bush-bashing terrorist-appeasing whining elitists:
Zero. Ever.
...

The problem seems to me to be the definition of "free speech". Liberals define it as anything they want to say or do that opposes America. I say "speech" ends where "action" begins. Once you pick up a gun for the enemy, throw a rock at a cop during a "peace" march, send money to a terrorist organisation, or travel to Baghdad to block an American JDAM with your ass, you have crossed the line from free speech to costly action.
...

Saying the War on Terror is all about al-Qaeda is like saying we should have fought the Japanese Naval Air Force after Pearl Harbor. Not the Japanese Navy, not the Japanese Army, not the Empire of Japan -- just the Naval Air Force.
...

Complaining about the "waste" when human embryos are destroyed instead of being used in medical experiments is a lot like going to a funeral and complaining about the waste of perfectly good meat.
...

Blaming CO2 for climate change is like blaming smoke for the fire. CO2 is largely a following, not a leading, indicator of a rise in temperature.
...

Cavalier's First Theorem:
Every time, Liberals will fight to protect the guilty and kill the innocent, while Conservatives will fight to protect the innocent and punish the guilty.

Cavalier's Second Theorem:
Liberals are just Socialists who want to be loved... then again, Socialists are just Communists who lack the courage of their convictions.

Cavalier's Third Theorem:
Any strongly moral, hawkish or pro-American statement by a Liberal will inevitably be followed by a "but."


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The Ultimate War Simulation: Why does this scenario seem so familiar?

What Kind of Liberal Are You?
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Communists for Kerry

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Fellowship 9/11: Sauron never attacked Rohan, Saruman did! Yet a small group of elitists convinced Middle-earth to divert resources from the real war to attack Mordor for personal gain.


Analysis

When Democrats Attack
Did prominent Democrats switch positions on Iraq just to attack President Bush for political gain? (See the updated list.)

Was Iraqi Freedom Justified?
An honest, step-by-step analysis of the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq that Congress voted into law shows that it was.

Saddam's Philanthropy of Terror
Details of solid ties to organised international terrorism

How The Left Betrayed Iraq
by Naseer Flayih Hasan

Did We Botch The Occupation?
No, not of Iraq: of Germany. Read the media's take on how we "lost the peace" in 1946 and compare.

Debunking 8 Anti-War Myths About the Conflict in Iraq

Pictures from Hate Bush/Hate America/Hate Capitalism/Hate Israel/general wacko rallies
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The Fatal Conceit:
The Errors of Socialism
by F. A. Hayek



Articles Previously Published at
Useless-Knowledge.com

- When Good Liberals Go Bad - 05/29/03
- How Stupid Do Democrats Think You Are? - 05/31/03
- Who Are These 'Rich' Getting Tax Cuts, Anyway? - 06/02/03
- How Can We Miss The Clintons If They Won't Go Away? - 06/04/03
- Whining of Mass Distraction: How To Discredit A President - 06/05/03
- Liberal "Rules" for Arguing - 06/10/03
- Liberalism: Curable or Terminal? - 06/14/03
- Filibustering Judges: Hijacking Presidential Powers? - 06/17/03
- Is Hamas Exempt from the War on Terror? - 06/22/03
- How Malleable Is The Constitution? - 06/26/03
- Rejecting Our Biological and Cultural Heritage - 06/30/03
- I Need Liberal Assistance, Now! - 07/02/03
- Bring Them On - 07/03/03
- We Need You Arrogant Warmongering Americans...Again - 07/09/03
- Much Ado About Nothing, Again - 07/13/03
- Double Standard: Blindly Blame Bush - 07/18/03
- Was WWII Also Unjustified? - 07/20/03
- Clinton Backing Bush? Don't Bet On It! - 07/24/03
- How To Be A Hypocritical Liberal - 07/28/03
- The Clinton Legacy: In Answer to Mr. Stensrud - 07/30/03
-What Is 'Good News' To Liberals? - 08/02/03
- Bush's Big Blunder - 08/06/03
- The Meaning of Right - Why I Supported the Iraq War - 08/10/03
- More Liberal "Rules" for Arguing - 08/14/03
- You Can Have Cary Grant; I'll Take John Wayne! - 08/19/03
- Where Is The ACLU When It's Actually Needed? - 08/25/03
- Who's Afraid Of The Big Bad Ten Commandments? - 08/28/03
- From The Weasels: Thanks For Nothing - 08/30/03
- The Liberal Superfriends - 09/02/03
- Liberal Superfriends 2: The Sequel - 09/05/03
- Saddam and 9/11: Connect the Dots - 09/08/03
- Throwing Away the Southern Vote - 11/02/03
- Libya: The First Domino Falls - 12/20/03
- Is the UN Playing Games with American Politics? - 03/04/04


Blogs to Browse

Across the Pond
AlphaPatriot
Arts for Democracy
Betsy's Page
Bill Karl
Blonde Sagacity
Bull Moose Strikes Back
Common Sense & Wonder
Conservative Pleasure
Dangerous Logic
DowneastBlog
ElectionProjection
Everything I Know Is Wrong
Freedom of Thought
Sally Girl
Korla Pundit
LogiPundit.com
MarkLevinFan
Mark Nicodemo
Michelle Malkin
Moonbattery
My Arse From My Elbow
QandO Blog
RadioBS.net
Rebel Rouser
RightThinkingGirl
Sally Girl
Samantha Burns
Semi-Intelligent Thoughts
Sighed Effects
Sister Toldjah
Stark Truth
Take A Stand Against Liberals
The Resplendent Mango
The Right Society
The YNC
Tom's Common Sense
Tom DeLay
Tomfoolery of the Highest Order
Trying to Grok
TS Right Dominion
Violent Daydreams
Watcher of Weasels
Word Around the Net
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Sunday, July 18, 2004
How Far Left Can the Left Really Go?

Here's a quiz: What political group published this list of reasons they hope George W. Bush will be defeated in the upcoming Presidential election? Read them carefully and see if you can tell.

1. Bush is destroying workers rights and outsourcing jobs instead of protecting the right to organize and creating new jobs rebuilding schools, bridges, roads and hospitals.
2. Bush is privatizing Medicare, Social Security and public education with phony reforms instead of enacting health care for all, protecting retirement funds and full funding for public education through college.
3. Bush is bankrupting the Federal Government with giant tax cuts for the very rich and super-funds to the military instead of securing the budget for human needs by taxing the rich and spending on human needs.
4. Bush is rolling back civil rights gains instead of enforcing and expanding affirmative action to end racism in all areas of life.
5. Bush is curtailing women's rights and choice by undermining Roe v. Wade instead of upholding the right to choice and ending the gender wage gap.
6. Bush is abusing immigrant workers in low-wage jobs instead of providing a clear path to citizenship and equal rights.
7. Bush is exploiting and ruining the environment by protecting corporate polluters instead of conserving our natural resources for the public good.
8. Bush's war in Iraq is a disaster for our security and economy. He is pushing for more preemptive wars and for first strike nuclear military policy instead of negotiations and cooperation utilizing the UN.
9. Bush is denying civil liberties and free speech in the name of fighting terrorism instead of repealing the USA Patriot Act and helping cities, towns and states fund firefighters and police.
10. Bush discriminates against Gays and Lesbians with a Constitutional Amendment instead of expanding civil rights and liberties for all.

Just how true is the old phrase, "birds of a feather flock together?" As the Democratic party has drifted further and further left, many have speculated that it was only a matter of time before they became indistinguishable from our old enemies the Communists. Lo and behold, the Communist Party USA has recently published on its web site the above document, "Top Ten Reasons to Defeat Bush." It could just as easily have been taken from the Democratic National Committee's web page, word for word. In fact, the list could double as Kerry supporter talking points. Let's take them one by one.

1. Calling for a government jobs program is as close to Communism as one can get. The WPA was a necessary evil during the full-blown depression America suffered in the early 1930's, when unemployment rates ran as high as thirty percent. It was dismantled as soon as the economy recovered. Making more citizens dependent on the government for income isn't the sort of thing a society based on freedom and capitalism should advocate as a normal matter of course. As for outsourcing jobs, Democrats and Communists pretend not to know that outsourced jobs have been more than balanced by insourced jobs. That's free market capitalism at work. As long as the US provides an environment in which small businesses -- the backbone of our economy -- can thrive, business will be good.

2. Health care for all, a neat euphemism for socialised medicine, only increases one's dependence on the government -- an important pillar of Communism. Socialised medicine is unworkable. Under Great Britain's national health care system, for instance, patients often wait months for heart surgery... unless they have their operation in another country. As for public education, the interests of children would be far better served by holding the system accountable for giving them a real education, instead of processing them through the system like so many head of cattle. What good are functional illiterates with college degrees they can't even read? The No Child Left behind Act will force the system to actually educate children, although school vouchers would put the power to hold school systems accountable directly into the hands of the parents.

3. Democrats and Communists always say that they want to tax "the rich," but they never say how they plan to do so. Since the truly rich -- like Teresa Heinz-Kerry, for instance -- don't have an actual income, raising or lowering the income tax will never affect them in any way. When Democrats and Communists say they plan to raise taxes on the rich, they mean business owners and entrepreneurs -- the people who drive our economy. Raising taxes on their businesses would cause them to cut back on expansion, fire workers, and raise the prices of their goods and services to make up the loss. No one has yet been able to get a Democrat, Communist or Liberal to explain how that will improve the economy... unless large industries are nationalised, owned or at least controlled by the government. The last political party to do that was the National Socialist Party of Germany, otherwise known as the Nazis.

4. Affirmative Action will never end racism; it only covers it up while making it worse. As long as people are given advantages based on skin color, others will resent it and racism will flourish. It's just the usual Democrat attempt to keep people divided along racial and economic lines so they can promise reforms in exchange for power. The only way to end racism is to stop teaching people that their differences are more important than their similarities, that their character and abilities mean far less than the color of their skin. Racism will continue as long as groups like the NAACP -- now little more than a mouthpiece for the DNC -- undermine powerful black people like Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice for purely political motives. Instead of praising their high-level appointments, based on their suitability for the jobs, so-called "civil rights" organisations denigrate them as "sellouts."

5. Many people in this country continue to oppose abortion, despite "mainstream" media's euphemistically calling abortion exercising a "right to choose." A plurality believes it should be legal only under tighter restrictions than currently exist. President Bush has never tried to outlaw abortion, because he doesn't believe "the culture has changed to the extent that the American people or the Congress would totally ban abortions." A clear majority (68%, according to a CNN/USA Today/Gallup Poll taken in October 2003) supported the President's bill to make partial-birth abortions illegal. This puts Democrats and Communists in the bizarre position of demanding that the current President be replaced for doing what the people actually wanted him to do. Note that those polls were taken before it was shown that babies in the womb cry, smile, yawn and even play, as ultrasound pictures have since proven. Women who choose to stay home and raise their children are the largest contributors to the gender wage gap. (They could call it exercising their right to choose, but that choice isn't acceptable to the Left.) The only way to legislate it away would be to mandate that all children must be raised in State-run daycare centers... something that would please the Communists no end.

6. Obviously the Democrats and Communists are referring to illegal immigrants. The only "clear path" they should get is one that leads to the nearest border... and the majority of Americans agree. Three fourths of Americans say that the United States should not make it easier for illegal immigrants to become citizens, according to a January 2004 Gallup poll

7. Regulated private industry is actually the best guarantor of conservation of natural resources, as long as the laws are enforced. Unlike Liberals, Democrats and Communists, corporations plan for long-term use of natural resources, the same way a farmer plans to harvest his fields year after year. Locking sections of the country behind glass will never serve "the public good." Consider the terrible California fires of 2003. They spread so quickly and so far because the forest was unregulated and unharvested due to environmentalism gone wild. Dead trees were never removed and undergrowth never cleared. The animals that would have performed that function ceased to inhabit California decades ago; humans are responsible for taking on the job of forest maintenance. Instead, due to environmentalism, we have been forced to abandon that responsibility in the name of "preservation." American industry already has the most restrictive pollution controls in the world. According to the CIA World Factbook 2003, there are very few countries without environmental problems, most of them far worse than can be found in the US.

8. By removing a brutal totalitarian dictator who supported international terrorism and replacing him with a democracy, President Bush hopes to attack terrorism at its very heart. Congress approved the liberation of Iraq when they voted the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq into law, otherwise it could never have taken place. What kind of people argue against freeing people from brutal oppression? At one time, it was believed by some that Liberals actually stood for freedom from oppression, but their support for Communism and totalitarian dictatorships has finally uncovered the lie. As for the United Nations, it's doubtful that another such corrupt, self-serving, amoral gathering of international villains could be assembled outside of a James Bond film.

9. No one has yet been able to find a single case of a single American citizen's civil liberties being impacted by the PATRIOT Act. (Before you scream, "Jose Padilla," be aware that he is being held under the 1942 case ex parte Quirin, not the PATRIOT Act.) No one's free speech has been taken away, no one has been herded into death camps, no one has lost the right to own a gun. Whoops... that's one civil right the Left actually does want to remove from American citizens.

10. The proposed Constitutional amendment to define marriage was done in a perfectly legal manner, and was defeated fairly in the Senate. Preventing runaway courts from forcing a redefinition of marriage down the throats of a people that neither want nor need it is not discrimination, it's protecting the rights of the majority from being abused by a tiny minority. Marriage has deep roots in religion, biology and millennia of tradition; gay "marriage" is an attempt to force a change in a society by legislation when the people clearly want no such thing. According to a CBS poll taken in February 2004, the public "seems to have become even less receptive toward gay marriage in the past seven months. Although a majority has always opposed gay marriage, last July, 40% said they would favor allowing homosexual couples to legally marry, as did 34% in December. That figure is now 30%." Why do Democrats and Communists continue to push the issue? It divides people, creates tension, and distracts voters from the booming economy and successful prosecution of the war on terror. The Left believes that fomenting tension and division will convince Americans to vote for John Kerry, though there's no logical reason to do so.

And if the American citizens suffer from a damaged economy, lose ground in the fight against terrorism and take a severe blow to their self-confidence as Kerry raises taxes and moves the war on terrorism into the courtroom, then so be it, right? As long as the Democrats -- and by association, the Communists -- win.


Posted at Sunday, July 18, 2004 by CavalierX
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Saturday, July 10, 2004
The Edwards Effect

For his running mate in the 2004 Presidential election, John Kerry would have been wise to pick Dick Gephardt. A solid, respected, experienced man who appeals to voters on both sides of the aisle, Gephardt would have brought with him a great deal of union support (the rank-and-file, not the fat-cat union bosses who think they have Democratic politicians in their pockets while the politicians think the same about them). He might have picked Governor Tom Vilsack, with his years of experience in the executive branch of government. Either one would likely have brought with him at least one midwestern state, where the votes just might decide this election. Instead, Kerry chose to cast his lot with a slick-talking trial lawyer who couldn't even carry his home state in the Democratic primary elections.

What does Kerry think Edwards might bring to his campaign? Does he think the soft Carolina drawl and smug good looks will remind voters of Bill Clinton? So many pundits are cooing over Edwards' appeal to women that female voters should be insulted. Democrats seem to think of them of as nothing more than walking hormone factories with the inexplicable ability to vote. Women, it is believed, will vote for the "prettiest" candidate without doing all that nasty thinking about his policies or experience. Contrary to Democrat opinion, women do think. Just like men, they're thinking, "Is this man really ready to be Vice-President of the United States?"

During the Democratic primaries, Kerry attacked Edwards for not being experienced enough to run for office. Asked by a young woman at an event in Des Moines why she should vote for him instead of Edwards, Kerry said, "When I came home from Vietnam in 1969, I don't know if John Edwards was out of diapers then yet or not, I'm totally not sure. I don't know." John Edwards' entire political career consists of less than one term as a junior Senator. He decided not to seek reelection, possibly due to voter dissatisfaction over his abysmal attendance record. Edwards missed 32% of the votes in 2003 (90% in September alone), while Kerry missed a whopping 60% during the course of the year. (Note that President Bush is expected to be President 100% of the time while campaigning, vacationing or even sleeping.) During his short time in the Senate, Edwards introduced precisely zero bills that made the passage into law. That's it -- that's his entire political resume. His appeal on the campaign consists of a smooth line of patter, a wide smile and "better hair."

When asked by a reporter how John Edwards stacked up against current Vice President Dick Cheney, President Bush snapped right back, "Dick Cheney can be President. Next." Think about that for a second.

What is the job, the real job, of the Vice President? Besides presiding over the Senate -- a sure cure for insomnia -- his or her job is to be ready to step in and take over the country in the event of the President's death or incapacitation. In the best of times, that's an awesome and heavy responsibility to bear. In wartime, the most likely scenario for such a change would be the assassination of the President, with America in a state of chaos. In the kind of fight we face today, the Vice President may need to take over and run the United States smoothly in the midst of economic and social upheaval and fear the likes of which have never been seen before. The slightest mistake could cause a crash -- economic or otherwise -- from which the country would take decades to recover. What would an inexperienced politician like John Edwards do when faced with sole responsibility for America at war during a new terrorist attack, perhaps with weapons of mass destruction, with the President and thousands or tens of thousands of Americans dead in their own homes or places of business, and with no way to tell when or where the next strike will hit? What good will his smile and slick talk do any of us then? Who's he going to sue?

For that matter, what life experience makes John Kerry think he's capable of running any country, much less the United States of America? What experience does he have at running anything at all? Was he the mayor of even a small town? Has he been governor of even a small state? How about a list of the companies he has personally run as CEO? Has he managed a professional baseball team, or even coached Little League? Has he even been a board member of the local PTA? Kerry's entire list of qualifications (besides being in a war thirty years ago for a few months) consists of taking up one side of every issue, then the other, then maybe switching back to the first. Neither Kerry nor Edwards is qualified to run a hot-dog cart, much less the most powerful country on Earth. It would be equivalent to installing someone whose boating experience is limited to white-water rafting as Captain of the Queen Mary 2. Without a truly great first officer to balance the Captain's inexperience, that ship is destined to end up on the rocks, even without terrorists in the engine room. A Governor like Tom Vilsack might have provided the experience necessary to balance John Kerry's lack of executive credentials, but John Edwards can not do so.

This is wartime, and a new kind of war to boot. This is no time for on-the-job training in the White House. We just can't afford it.


Posted at Saturday, July 10, 2004 by CavalierX
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Monday, July 05, 2004
Are You Too Stupid to Vote Properly?

According to some Democratic lawmakers, you aren't capable of voting this year without a United Nations monitor making sure you get it right. Eleven prominent Democrats, elected members of the House of Representatives, have sent a letter to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, begging him to send UN monitors to oversee the 2004 election. Texas representative Eddie Bernice Johnson led the latest effort to subvert the sovereignty of the United States and place us under the control of the increasingly-corrupt United Nations. Besides Johnson, the letter was also signed by Julia Carson of Indiana, Jerrold Nadler, Edolphus Towns, Joseph Crowley and Carolyn B. Maloney of New York, Raul Grijalva of Arizona, Corrine Brown of Florida, Elijah E. Cummings of Maryland, Danny K. Davis of Illinois and Michael M. Honda of California.

Let me get this straight. A group of Democrats want to bring some people from countries like North Korea, Iran, Syria, China and Cuba -- people that have never seen a democratic election in their lifetimes -- to sit in judgment on our elections? What kind of voodoo politics is that? The last time a foreign body had any direct influence over the political process of this country, the situation was corrected by a war for our freedom from British rule. Are these so-called Americans so willing to surrender that hard-won right of self-determination now, and to such a shamelessly scandal-ridden group of anti-American dictatorships and terrorist sympathisers? We may as well dissolve the Union now and save ourselves the pain of watching it done for us.

Generations of Americans have fought, and many have died, to preserve this independent nation as a single sovereign entity, free of outside control. Those men would be appalled who declared "for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor." Where is the honor in those Democrats who can't admit that Al Gore lost the election fair and square according to the existing laws, four years after the fact?

That's what this election and this kind of partisanship is all about, in the end -- the bitter, unquenchable anger of Democrats who tried and failed to overthrow the election process when Al Gore lost the 2000 election. After calling President Bush to concede the election, Gore decided that he still wanted to win after all, and demanded a recount. As per Florida law, a machine recount was taken, and Gore still lost. Unfazed by and unwilling to accept his loss, unable to consider the good of the country more important than his own wounded pride and unfulfilled ambition, Gore sued the State of Florida to demand a manual recount. When the Florida Supreme Court allowed it... Gore still lost, even when the absentee votes of the military -- people whose votes deserve to be counted if anyone's are -- were throw out. After the recount was officially certified the second time and the deadline for recounts was reached, the Florida electors cast their votes. At that point, the election was over. In an act of almost unbelievable hubris, Gore demanded another manual recount, and the FSU allowed it again. Gore still lost. Never mind that the entire country was in an uproar over this subversion of the democratic process. Never mind that the pride and anger of Democrats was interrupting the smooth transfer of power as mandated by the Constitution. Finally, the Supreme Court decided that more recounts would be unproductive, and would be in violation of the Constitution. They decided that the three-times-verified election results would stand. Though the Democrats have resented that decision for nearly four years, it's important to remember that in the case of an unclear Presidential vote result (which this wasn't), Congress would have the right to decide. Article II, Section 1, Clause 3 of the Constitution states that "if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President." (The Twelfth Amendment shortened the list to the three highest.) George W. Bush would still have won in any case.

This latest attempt to brand the 2000 election as somehow "wrong" is an offshoot of Rep. Johnson's own unfounded attempt to claim that black voters were deliberately disenfranchised due to their color. According to the 17 August 2001 dissenting statement by members of the US Commission on Civil Rights, "Dr. John Lott, an economist at Yale Law School, was unable to find a consistent, statistical significant relationship between the share of voters who were African Americans and the ballot spoilage rate." In fact, the only people that weren't allowed to vote by Florida law were convicted felons. While there were problems with the 1998-mandated purge of convicted felons from the state's voting rolls, there was ample time for anyone who had been convicted, served their time and been released to ensure that their restored voting rights were properly recorded. As usual, personal responsibility is never an issue with Democrats. The problems with the voting rolls actually went both ways -- over 6,500 convicted felons who had no right to vote were allowed to do so anyway. The Democrats don't seem at all concerned with votes that were illegally cast for Gore, however. They also didn't seem concerned with the fact that the "mainstream" news outlets declared the Florida vote for Gore an hour early. 187,000 registered voters in Florida's heavily-Republican panhandle -- in the Central time zone -- did not vote. A poll conducted by McLaughlin & Associates indicated not only that two-thirds of them would have voted for George W. Bush, but that "the early and incorrect news network announcements declaring Al Gore the winner in Florida may have influenced thousands of last-minute voters." The Democrats are not concerned, as they pretend to be, for the rights of all voters... only those who might have voted for Gore. It's the ultimate in partisanship.

As Civil Rights Commissioners Abigail Thernstrom and Russell G. Redenbaugh stated in 2001, "[b]y basing its conclusion on allegations that seem driven by partisan interests and that lack factual basis, the majority on the Commission has needlessly fostered public distrust, alienation and manifest cynicism." Frankly, that sounds near-prophetic in retrospect. What have the Democrats done for the last four years except foster public distrust, alienation and manifest cynicism? It could almost be the party's motto.

And now, in their bitter rage and drive for power, Democrats -- some of them, at any rate -- want to turn over the most basic right of all Americans to the management of foreign countries. What purpose would be served by submitting our rights to those who have no motive to further American interests -- quite the opposite, in fact? Distrust, Alienation and Cynicism, to be sure.


Posted at Monday, July 05, 2004 by CavalierX
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Saturday, June 26, 2004
Exploding Liberal Myths 5: The Moral United Nations

The Left's dogmatic insistence that the answer to all of America's foreign policy questions lie within the hallowed halls of the United Nations continues to bewilder the clear-thinking. The persistent belief that the UN is somehow the world's "moral compass" is due more to hopes and dreams than fact and reason. The UN's record of incompetence and corruption is truly mind-boggling, and it seems to grow every day.

The most well-known moral failure of the UN in recent memory took place in Rwanda, in 1994. UN peacekeeping troops did nothing to prevent Rwandans from being slaughtered in a spasm of "racial cleansing." The UN did worse than nothing -- Canadian General Romeo Dallaire was ordered to withdraw UN troops as the killing began. Soldiers and civilians of the Hutu majority killed more than 500,000 minority Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus in 100 days; an estimated 800,000 were murdered altogether. According to UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy, "Ten years later, the children of Rwanda are still suffering the consequences of a conflict caused entirely by adults… For them, the genocide is not just a historical event, but an inescapable part of daily life today and tomorrow." Now the UN is repeating its Rwanda apathy in the Sudan, where Arab militia are murdering the inhabitants of Darfur (the western province) by the thousands. The Sudanese government -- dominated by the country's Arab minority -- denies that any ethnic-related violence is taking place against members of the Zaghawa, Fur and Masalit tribes. Vice President Ali Osman Taha accused the West of fabricating the situation. A statement from Andrew Natsios, head of the U.S. Agency for International Development, estimated that "[i]f we get relief in, we could lose a third of a million. If we do not, it could be a million." The government of Sudan is obstructing the flow of aid to the people of Darfur. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said he "cannot call the killing a genocide even though there have been massive violations of international humanitarian law." Apparently the phrase that became the UN's motto after Rwanda, "Never Again," meant "Until Next Time."

The UN's failures are not limited to inaction in the face of genocide. The UN's mismanagement -- to the point of complete bungling -- of the Balkans is appalling. After more than five years, the region is still in chaos. "The vagueness of the national status of Kosovo is a strain on people. Various nationalistic movements see this kind of a situation as insulting," said Harri Holkeri, the chief U.N. envoy in Kosovo. Racial violence is still a constant threat. Refugees still live in camps, afraid to return home. The people are so unhappy with the conditions there that they voted their former dictator Slobodan Milosevic a seat in Parliament, even as he sits in jail in The Hague.

As far as morals are concerned, the UN certainly has no right to claim the high ground. Sexual predators thinly disguised as UNHCR aid workers took advantage of their positions of power in West African nations to demand sex from children as the price of aid for their families. The BBC reported in 2002 that workers in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea had been exploiting those people who came to them for help. Now the sexual abuse in return for protection and food has moved to the Congo, where the 4,000 UN peacekeepers stationed in Bunia have fathered an unknown number of illegitimate children on unmarried girls. The head of the UN in Bunia, Dominique McAdams, said that she "requested evidence and proof on this matter, but I have not received anything from anyone." In the late 1990's, UN police in Bosnia were running a sex slave/forced prostitution ring. When it was discovered and reported by American policewoman Kathryn Bolkovac, she was fired from DynCorp, the company the UN had worked through to hire her.

The UN is also the seat of world-class fraud and corruption. The massive oil-for-food/oil voucher scandal (often nicknamed "UNSCAM" or  "oil-for-fraud") is only just beginning to make a dent in the "mainstream" news. Powerful and influential figures in UN member states, especially France and Russia, received millions of dollars in discounted oil vouchers, which could be sold on the open market. The list of 270 recipients (which covers just the year 1999) includes politicians, religious figures, and heads of corporations, many of whom figured prominently in the opposition to the liberation of Iraq. One name that stands out on the list is that of UN Undersecretary General Benon Sevan, head of the oil-for-food program that was set up in 1996 to guarantee that humanitarian aid reached the Iraqi people through the UN's sanctions. The UN itself oversaw each transaction, and took a 2.2% administrative fee, amounting to $1.2 billion over the years. Under UN mismanagement, deliberate or not, Saddam Hussein managed to siphon off over $10 billion with which to buy palaces, illegal weapons, and the United Nations.

Workers at the UN are well aware of the corruption surrounding them, but accept it as the only way to advance their careers. Deloitte Consulting LLC recently released the findings of the United Nations Organizational Integrity Survey 2004, which compiled responses of UN staff to a variety of questions concerning morals, integrity and organisational corruption. Of some 18,000 UN workers worldwide, about a third responded to the questions. The incredible results included such insights as, "Staff members feel unprotected when reporting violations of codes of conduct," by 46% unfavorable to 12% favorable responses. 65% of UN staff reported that they have observed breaches of ethical conduct. Only 15% agree that breaches are reported and 17% agree that they are investigated. 44% believe reporting violations is "career limiting." I have a feeling that Ms. Bolkovac would have agreed.

So this is the repository of moral superiority in the Western world, the organisation that Liberals feel uses its power more responsibly than the US. Even without debating the insanity of putting Libya in charge of the Human Rights Commission or Iraq in charge of the 2003 Conference on Disarmament (as was scheduled before Iraq was liberated a few months before), the UN is no more than the ultimate old-boy network of bribery and dishonesty. Sexual abuse, underhanded scandals, fraud, mass corruption and ethical breaches of all kinds permeate the United Nations while it pretends to hold a position of moral ascendancy. Putting the United States under its control, as many on the Left would do, would be just like having Bill Clinton back in the White House. Permanently.

Exploding Liberal Myths 11: Home Spying Hogwash 
Exploding Liberal Myths 10: The Plame Name Game
Exploding Liberal Myths 9: The Separation of Church and State 
Exploding Liberal Myths 8: The Nazi Meme 
Exploding Liberal Myths 7: Fidel Castro, Demigod?
Exploding Liberal Myths 6: A Less Safe Post-Iraq
Exploding Liberal Myths 4: Runaway Global Warming
Exploding Liberal Myths 3: Outsourcing Woes
Exploding Liberal Myths 2: The Eeevil PATRIOT Act
Exploding Liberal Myths 1: Nigerian Uranium  

UPDATE (28 June 04): The Washington Post is finally reporting on the Sudan situation. Representative Frank R. Wolf (R-VA) and Senator Sam Brownback (R-KS) recently visited a refugee camp. Perhaps they can get some help to those people before it's too late.


Posted at Saturday, June 26, 2004 by CavalierX
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Saturday, June 19, 2004
Paul Johnson and the Nature of the Enemy

How we Americans react to the horrible murder of Paul Johnson by al-Qaeda extremists will tell us a great deal about ourselves. We need to discover whether we are truly determined to stop terrorists or merely appease them, pushing the real fight down the road for another generation. The most common reaction was disbelief, but anyone who was surprised simply doesn't understand the enemy. Why is it such a shock that murderous extremists would kill one man, when they glory in committing mass murder nearly every day? Did anyone really think that prayer vigils and news footage of neighbors lighting candles would stop the terrorists from killing an "infidel"? It's about time we wake up and face the nature of this enemy. We cannot negotiate with them. We cannot bribe them. We cannot appeal to their better nature -- if they have such a thing, they already believe they're acting in accordance with it.

Terrorists firmly believe that God has instructed them to kill us all, en masse or one by one if need be. That's their grand scheme, their master plan, and everything they do works toward that end. Nothing can talk them out of that belief or weaken the resolve that springs from it. Exposing them to Western society only heightens their loathing of it, even as they partake of its freedoms. Their beliefs are rooted in a literal interpretation of the Qur'an, which contains passages such as:

Let those fight in the cause of Allah who sell the life of this world for the hereafter. To him who fighteth in the cause of Allah - whether he is slain or gets victory - soon shall We give him a reward of great (value).
- Sura 4.74

But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practise regular charity, then open the way for them: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.
- Sura 9.5

Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers (in battle), smite at their necks; at length, when ye have thoroughly subdued them, bind a bond firmly (on them).
- Sura 47.4

The Saudi ruling family has turned a blind eye to the rise of the fanatical Wahhabi sect (an 18th century fundamentalist movement of the Sunni form of Islam) for far too long. Worse -- in return for the forbearance of terrorist groups, the Saudis have actively assisted and funded them. That truce cost the Saudis dearly, according to testimony by Dr. Alex Alexiev before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Terrorism in June 2003. "Between 1975 and 1987, the Saudis admit to having spent $48 billion or $4 billion per year on "overseas development aid," a figure which by the end of 2002 grew to over $70 billion (281 billion Saudi rials)," Alexiev stated. "The Saudi money is spent according to a carefully designed plan to enhance Wahhabi influence and control at the expense of mainstream Muslims. In Muslim countries, much of the aid goes to fund religious madrassas that teach little more than hatred of the infidels, while producing barely literate Jihadi cadres. There are now tens of thousands of these madrassas run by the Wahhabis' Deobandi allies in South Asia and also throughout Southeastern Asia. In Pakistan alone, foreign funding of these madrassas, most of which comes from Saudi Arabia, is estimated at no less than $350 million per year." After 9/11, President Pervez Musharraf vowed to reform Pakistan's madrassa schools, but his efforts have had little effect so far.

So what form should our response to these terrible murders of American citizens take? Most Liberals and Democrats favor what they call a "nuanced" approach -- trying to come to an agreement with groups like al-Qaeda. Find out what they want and give it to them. Certainly the terrorists will make demands, but -- as always -- return to the attack after gaining the concessions they request. Ask Israel for examples of the futility of negotiating with terrorists. Trying to reason Islamofascist fanatics out of their beliefs is like trying to reason a mad dog out of its rabies -- it only gives the dog another chance to bite. There's no "nuance" to a knife -- it cuts you, or it doesn't. There's no "nuance" to death, either. One minute Daniel Pearl, Nick Berg and now Paul Johnson were alive, and the next they were dead, beheaded by Muslim extremists who believe they were told by God to "smite at their necks."

Killing or arresting the individuals who commit these atrocities won't be enough. We need to go to the source. One thing we can do is shut down the madrassas right here in the US, stop the funding flowing to them from so-called "charities," and pressure our allies to do the same. At one such school, the Islamic Saudi Academy in Northern Virginia, students "file into their Islamic studies class, where the textbooks tell them the Day of Judgment can't come until Jesus Christ returns to Earth, breaks the cross and converts everyone to Islam, and until Muslims start attacking Jews." At another, "[m]aps of the Middle East hang on classroom walls, but Israel is missing." Nationally, there are estimated to be 200 to 600 of these schools, with at least 30,000 students. Thousands of others attend Islamic weekend schools, according to Valerie Strauss and Emily Wax of the Washington Post. (Yes, even Washington Post stories can contain facts, buried as they are in prose overly sympathetic to the beleaguered students of jihad schools. Their story, written less than six months after 9/11, made it a point to report that "students in class also talk about the taunts they face outside the school gates -- being called 'terrorist' and 'bomber' -- and ask whether Osama bin Laden is simply the victim of such prejudice." It took less than six months to Blame America First.) We need to pressure the Saudi ruling family to stop the financing of terrorist groups from within their country. The bargain they had made with al-Qaeda is obviously over; the royal family must decide whether they want to be counted among our friends or our enemies. Saudi Arabia has been moving inexorably toward civil war since King Fahd's 1995 stroke left the government too weakened to contain the frustration among the citizens; now is the time to gain these concessions from them.

We have the ability to stop terrorism at its source, but do we have the will? The upcoming Presidential election will be a referendum on the war against terrorism more than anything else. Do we want to have a "nuanced" conversation with the kind of people who behead innocents on camera for their religion, or do we want to stop the "barbaric people" and "extremist thugs" that President Bush understands them to be? We'll find out in just a few short months.


Posted at Saturday, June 19, 2004 by CavalierX
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Sunday, June 13, 2004
Iran's Growing Nuclear Threat

For years, the Iranian government has been playing games with the world about its nuclear program, claiming that they were only interested in peaceful nuclear development. That lie is about to be disproved in the most terrible way possible -- by the emergence of Iran as a nuclear power.

For reference, ordinary natural uranium has an atomic weight of 238. Only .72 percent of naturally-occurring uranium consists of an unstable isotope with a weight of 235. Various complex methods can be used to separate the lighter uranium from the mix; the most common is by gas centrifuge, of the sort that was found buried under a rosebush in Iraq. Highly-enriched uranium (HEU) contains more than 20 percent Uranium-235. Weapons-grade HEU consists of more than 90 percent pure U-235. A power-generating reactor can be fueled with lower grades of uranium; there is no need for HEU unless you want a sustained nuclear fission reaction -- in other words, a nuclear bomb.

After months of playing hide-and-seek with the International Atomic Energy Agency, Iran has taken a hard-line stance against any restrictions on its nuclear program. Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi said, "Iran has a high technical capability and has to be recognized by the international community as a member of the nuclear club. This is an irreversible path." The "nuclear club" consists of those countries that admit to having nuclear weapons -- the US, the UK, France, Russia, China, and most recently Pakistan and India. North Korea claims to have working nuclear weapons, but has not yet openly tested one, and Israel is suspected of having them. Libya was close to achieving nuclear capability, but Moammar Ghaddafi wisely gave up his ambitions in that direction after the US-led coalition removed Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq in March 2003. Though Iran claimed to have halted its uranium enrichment program, inspectors from the IAEA have repeatedly found traces of highly-enriched uranium at multiple sites in Iran.

Iran has been caught in lies regarding its nuclear weapons programs before, and has covered up very badly. When IAEA inspectors tried in May 2004 to visit suspicious sites they had seen only months earlier, they found that the sites themselves had vanished. The buildings that the inspectors believed contained working enrichment facilities were gone, and in their place were freshly-planted flowerbeds. The Iranians pretended that no buildings had ever been there, even when shown aerial and satellite photographs of the missing buildings. Now, they refuse to keep up even a weak pretense. What else could it mean but the imminence of their nuclear ambition being fulfilled?

A radical fundamentalist government which sponsors global terrorism gaining nuclear capability is a horror that cannot be allowed to happen. If terrorists are willing to blow themselves up in cars packed with explosives or strap on "bomb belts" in order to kill innocent civilians in restaurants and buses, why would they balk at using nuclear weapons in the same way? If they believe they will be rewarded in the afterlife for killing a few children on a schoolbus, what reward do they think they'll receive for wiping an entire city off the map? It's no longer a matter of if, but when. If we allow Tehran to create nuclear weapons, how long will it be before we wake up to find that a nuclear bomb has destroyed a major city like Tel Aviv, Baghdad, Paris, New York, London or Washington DC? Every place on Earth that terrorists have struck, they would have attacked with nuclear weapons if it had been possible. Next time, it might be.

What can be done to stop this threat? If we think we have the time -- and that depends entirely on our intelligence services, which have not exactly had a good track record in the Middle East -- we can attempt to impose sanctions. Most of Iran's oil exports are shipped through the Straits of Hormuz, which can be blockaded with just a small percentage of America's naval force. With the bulk of its oil income halted, the Iranian economy would collapse, but not overnight. Will we have the determination to keep up the blockade long enough? Other oil-exporting nations would undoubtedly halt their exports to any participating nations, and gas and oil prices would rise higher than ever before. (One has to wonder whether this is why President Bush refuses to release oil from the nation's emergency reserve.) The only other option is to strike Iran's suspected nuclear facilities before they can enrich enough uranium to build a weapon, although knowing their locations depends on our intelligence services as well.

The only certainty either way is that the "mainstream" media, Democrats and Liberals would vilify President Bush even more than they already do, if that's even possible. One really has to wonder whose side they're on. Of course, they wouldn't be too kind to him if whole cities began to disappear, either.


Posted at Sunday, June 13, 2004 by CavalierX
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Thursday, June 10, 2004
Rewriting Ronald Reagan

The death of former President Ronald Reagan has brought out the worst and most vitriolic of his and America's critics, all trying to minimise the positive aspects and results of his eight years in office. Even CNN and the Associated Press are getting in on the action. When trying to focus public attention on the few negatives of his Presidency doesn't serve their purpose, the jackals resort to distorting and even creating the facts. Even when they speak well of him, they speak only of his winning personality, his inveterate optimism and his ability to communicate, while ignoring his policies and accomplishments. Most of us remember President Reagan as the man responsible for revitalising the American spirit, bringing the economy out of its tailspin and defeating the Soviet Union -- immense and daunting tasks at the time. The completion of any one of them would be cause enough to honor and respect the man; Ronald Reagan accomplished all three and more. The haters, as usual, focus exclusively on the negative, no matter how minor. They want to paint a picture of a President who "ignored" AIDS, started wars for fun, and just happened to be in the White House when the Soviet Union collapsed of its own accord. It's a false portrait.

The cry that "President Reagan ignored AIDS" is simply ridiculous. AIDS was not identified until 1981, and Reagan's government spent $5.7 billion on AIDS research, beginning in 1983. In 1988 - the last year he was in office -- there were only 32,311 cases of AIDS diagnosed in the US, and a drug had already been approved that held the promise of treatment. By way of comparison, there were over 62,000 cases of diabetes diagnosed in the United States that same year, yet no outcry about this was heard from the Left then or now. It amazes me that Liberals don't try to blame Reagan (or current President Bush, for that matter) for not halting the scourge of diabetes, a disease which has killed more people than AIDS. It's not about lives, of course, but lifestyle. Liberals have been trying to turn AIDS into a "romantic disease" (no pun intended, of course), much like consumption (tuberculosis) in the 19th century. Unfortunately, AIDS is often spread by the deliberate actions of the infected. There's no romanticising that, and no drug can stop it.

Liberals often excoriate Reagan for his liberation of Grenada and support of Nicaraguan rebels. His opposition to the spread of Communism in Central America (as well as the rest of the world) seems to infuriate them. Generally, the people actually liberated from those Communist regimes have a very different view of President Reagan. "Nicaragua is free because of Ronald Reagan," said Nicaraguan banker Roberto Arguello. "He was highly focused on getting rid of the Sandinistas. He made it part of his strategy to get rid of the evil empire that had planted seeds in Nicaragua, Cuba and Grenada. Ronald Reagan is revered by Nicaraguans." Reagan warned the nation of the growing Soviet threat in Central America in 1986. "A few years ago, then-Soviet Foreign Minister Gromyko noted that Central America was, quote, 'boiling like a cauldron' and ripe for revolution," Reagan said. "In a Moscow meeting in 1983, Soviet Chief of Staff Marshal Ogarkov declared: 'Over two decades ... there was only Cuba in Latin America. Today there are Nicaragua, Grenada, and a serious battle is going on in El Salvador.' But we don't need their quotes; the American forces who liberated Grenada captured thousands of documents that demonstrated Soviet intent to bring Communist revolution home to the Western Hemisphere." It was partly by halting the spread of Russia's influence and power that Reagan was able to defeat them.

While Liberals believed that the United States should be reconciled to the existence of the USSR and the continuation of the failed containment policy known as the Cold War, Ronald Reagan saw a way to bring that government to its knees -- now, in our time. He increased our military budget, forcing the USSR to increase their own military spending to match. In fact, given the 28.3% increase in the Gross Domestic Product during the 1980's, the overall increase in military spending as a percentage of the GDP only increased by .6% during Reagan's term, though it nearly doubled in dollar amount from $158 billion to $304 billion (in 1987 dollars). To the Soviet economy, however, a drastic increase in spending was unsustainable, and Reagan's proposed ant-ballistic missile defense system (Strategic Defense Initiative) a death-blow. The USSR could never hope to match it. The moment that Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev insisted that SDI research be stopped at the summit in Reykjavik, and Reagan walked away from the table, the Soviet Union was doomed. The critics may have a point -- if we had just waited another fifty or a hundred years, the Soviet Union may well have suffered an economic collapse. At what cost? During that time billions of people would have lived out their lives in fear and virtual slavery, and no one can tell how many would have died in its death throes. No collapsing government has ever gone quietly onto "the ash heap of history" of its own volition.

And Communist Russia needed to be defeated -- totalitarian governments which rob their citizens of life, liberty and the freedom to pursue happiness are the antithesis of what America is all about. We are by nature -- or ought to be -- opposed to such regimes. Though there were and still are other oppressive governments in the world, Ronald Reagan defeated the chief of them all, the one that funded and fueled so many others. In a way, his economic and foreign policies were cut from the same Conservative cloth. He believed in giving people a chance, not a handout.


Posted at Thursday, June 10, 2004 by CavalierX
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Sunday, June 06, 2004
Goodbye, Mr. President


more images of Ronald Reagan

The death of former President Ronald Reagan marks the passing of one of America's finest. As President, he took on the Soviet Union and won, he slashed taxes and brought back economic prosperity, and he rebuilt America's military as well as the Republican party, both suffering so badly from the after-effects of both Vietnam and Watergate. More than that, he gave us back our pride in being Americans. Ronald Reagan gave us back our optomism, our sense that as great as America is, it will be greater still.

The late 1970's were marred by a feeling of malaise and loss of control; that America had passed her peak and was spiraling downward to her end. Vietnam had damaged our national pride and our sense of purpose, and the Watergate scandal and resignation of the President introduced a profund distrust in both our country and our leaders. We were full of doubt about ourselves and our future. Nuclear war seemed inevitable. The recession with its high inflation and the energy crisis with its long lines at the gas stations caused the economy to stutter and stumble from bad to worse. The future loomed over the country like a dark cloud. Reagan reversed all of that. His upbeat, confident vision inspired all Americans. His detractors at the time faulted him for his sunny outlook and talk of a bright future. The American people ignored the nay-sayers and elected him over sitting President Jimmy Carter, 489 electoral votes to Carter's 49. When Reagan ran for re-election in 1984, he won 49 states and 525 electoral votes in the biggest landslide in American history. We believed in him, and he delivered.

His policies, however, were not what endeared him to the American people. It was his personal warmth and sense of humor, which he kept even in the worst circumstances. When he was shot by would-be assassin John Hinckley Jr. in 1981 and was rushed to the hospital, he looked around at the surgeons and joked, "I hope you're all Republicans." When he awoke to find his wife Nancy at his side, he told her, "Sorry, honey, I forgot to duck." When testing a microphone for a sound check in 1984, he quipped, "My fellow Americans, I am pleased to tell you I just signed legislation which outlaws Russia forever. The bombing begins in five minutes." Of course, it turned out that the microphone was live after all.

There's no way to pick out a particular favorite quote of his; there were so many. He was, after all, known as the Great Communicator. One of the most touching Reagan quotes, however, was from his speech after the Challenger shuttle disaster in 1986. "We will never forget them nor the last time that we saw them -- this morning, as they prepared for the journey, and waved good-bye, and slipped the surly bonds of Earth to touch the face of God."

Ronald Reagan has himself slipped the surly bonds of Earth, and he will be sorely missed.

Ronald Reagan Quotes from RightWingNews
Ronald Reagan Quotes part 2 from RightWingNews
Ronald Reagan's Farewell Speech to the Nation
The Reagan Legacy


Posted at Sunday, June 06, 2004 by CavalierX
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Saturday, June 05, 2004
Tenet's Resignation: Opportunity for Change?

The resignation of CIA director George Tenet is bound to become yet another political football for President Bush's vitriolic opponents in this most-vicious-ever election year. However, it could present an opportunity for the current Administration as well. The appointment of Donald Rumsfeld as Secretary of Defense led to the beginning of a sweeping transformation  -- America's military is becoming a more mobile, flexible, precise fighting force. A new CIA director with vision could and should reconfigure our intelligence service to meet modern challenges in the same way. In a post-Cold War, post-9/11 world, we need a less bureaucratic, more responsive, flexible, human-based intelligence agency.

The intelligence problems did not start with George Tenet's appointment as Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) in 1997. They began long before that, perhaps with the 1975 Church Commission report on covert action by the CIA in Chile, which stated that "covert action has been perceived as middle ground between diplomatic representation and the overt use of military force," and concluded that use of covert operations "may have been far too broad." The report recommended that "[g]iven the costs of covert action, it should be resorted to only to counter severe threats to the national security of the United States." This set the model for the CIA's opponents ever since, and has prevented any effective use of the Agency. Between Senator Frank Church and Stansfield Turner (President Carter's DCI from 1977-81), the Central Intelligence Agency lost most of its intelligence-gathering and covert operation capabilities, which were never fully regained. Turner revamped the CIA so that it ran, as he wrote to President Carter in 1977, "ethically and soundly." The only "ethical" way to gather information is by using technological means, instead of human. High-tech methods still worked against high-tech enemies like the Soviet Union, but (as we now realise) are almost completely useless for overhearing terrorists meeting in a cave in Afghanistan. The CIA designed for and focused on Eastern Europe was blind and deaf in the Middle East. We've been fighting a very hot war with a Cold War spy agency.

The "new and improved" ethical CIA's first major failure was the Ayatollah Khomeini's coup against the Shah of Iran in 1979, which no one was able to predict. After 241 Marines were killed in 1983 by a suicide bomber, a member of Iran-backed Hezbollah, the CIA's limited resources should have been increased and expanded to confront emerging enemies in the Middle East, but the CIA's ponderous bureaucracy resisted reform. Even after terrorists backed by Iraq bombed the World Trade Center in 1993, after the Cold War had already ended, the CIA was not reconfigured to meet the new threat. As a result, al-Qaeda and their affiliates were not prevented from bombing the Khobar Towers in 1996, the American embassies at Nairobi and Dar Es Salaam in 1998, or the USS Cole at a Yemeni dock in 2000. We also had no warning about 9/11, but that was due as much to the wall created between law enforcement and intelligence agencies by the now-infamous 1995 Gorelick memo as to lack of human intelligence.

Counter-terrorism isn't the only area where we have been nearly blind all these years, however. We had no idea, for instance, that North Korea reneged on their 1994 agreement to freeze their nuclear program before the ink was dry. We were unaware that Pakistan's top nuclear scientist, Abdul Qadeer Khan, was selling nuclear know-how to the highest bidders in North Korea, Iran and Libya. We didn't know that Libya was much closer to a nuclear weapon than previously suspected when Moammar Ghaddafi phoned Italy's Prime Minister Sylvio Berlusconi to say, "I will do whatever the Americans want, because I saw what happened in Iraq, and I was afraid." We only suspected that Saddam was cheating on the oil-for-food program with the complicity of France, Germany, Russia, China, and the United Nations itself. Worst of all, perhaps, was the fact that we could not tell how badly Saddam was cheating the UN's weapons inspectors, with what, where, and by how much. The threat of what Iraq might be doing right under our noses, with our enemies, was so severe that we needed to promise the use of force to make Saddam finally comply with his obligations under the 1991 cease-fire... and carry out that promise when he refused to do so.

President Bush's detractors seem to believe that we had no enemies during the 1990's. The truth is that we just didn't know who they were, where they were, or what they were doing. However, George Tenet can hardly be blamed for a systematic failure of our intelligence stretching back three decades. Instead of all the hand-wringing and finger-pointing that comprises the bulk of the workday in Washington DC, our elected officials should be looking for the person who can rebuild the CIA.

If the choice were mine, I might consider Dr. Paul Wolfowitz, currently the Deputy Secretary of Defense. Not only does he understand intelligence work from the perspective of its impact on policy decisions, but his selection would ensure smooth cooperation between the CIA and the Pentagon. If the White House is considering the option of combining various intelligence services into one, Wolfowitz would be a good choice to oversee that reorganisation. As a bonus, putting Paul Wolfowitz in charge of the CIA would drive the Liberals into a whirling dervish dance of hate and frustration.

Florida Congressman Porter Goss is a more likely choice, given that he was once a Central Intelligence Agency Clandestine Services Officer and is currently Chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence. He also served on the Subcommittee on Human Intelligence, Analysis and Counter Intelligence. He would bring insight and experience to the job that few others could, but may lack the drive to push through the exhaustive reforms necessary.

A bold choice would be Frank Gaffney, president of the Center for Security Policy, a non-partisan group whose analyses of defense policy are generally respected. Gaffney briefly served as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy under President Reagan. His views on the need for CIA reform with respect to human intelligence gathering and human analysis as well are widely known. Perhaps he'll have a chance to put his ideas into practice.

President Bush will most likely wait until after the election to name a new DCI, and that's wise. Few people would have the tough hide necessary to withstand the coming onslaught of criticism -- deserved or not -- from the Left. An appointee will have to face Senate confirmation hearings, if the Democrats in the Senate don't simply block the vote from taking place (as they blocked President Bush's judicial appointees from coming to a vote). The "findings" of the 9/11 inquisition will be made known in July... just in time for the Democratic National Convention.

After all, it's an election year, and the Democrats will stop at nothing to regain the White House.


Posted at Saturday, June 05, 2004 by CavalierX
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Monday, May 31, 2004
On the Dearth of Heroes and the Media

ABC. CBS. NBC. CNN. Time. Newsweek. The New York Times. The Los Angeles Times. The Washington Post. The leaders of the "mainstream" media have committed themselves to a relentless drumbeat of negativity concerning the war in Iraq, due to the ideological difference the vast majority of their journalists have with a Republican President as well as most Americans. The 2004 State of the News Media report found that 34% of national journalists consider themselves Liberals, while only 7% described themselves as Conservatives. That's nearly five times as many self-described Liberals in the media as Conservatives. Among the general American populace, 33% describe themselves as Conservatives, while only 20% think of themselves as Liberal.

Though almost no one actually likes wars, they occasionally become necessary, and our finest men and women are called to fight them. Liberals as a group consistently seek to avoid war at any cost whatsoever. They have been extremely vocal in their opposition to what they call President Bush's "adventure" in Iraq, since before the first soldier stepped over the border. They consistently seek to portray the conflict as something President Bush started for personal reasons, against the wishes of most Americans. In fact, Congress voted to give the President the authority to use military force in Iraq and the vast majority of the American people -- 72% according to an ABC News poll -- were behind the President when the fighting began in Iraq. Liberals -- especially those dominating the media -- did not approve the war, however, and have spared no opportunity to remind us of their position... and convince us that it was the position of most Americans as well. They also want us to believe that there was no Coalition of the Willing; that America fought Saddam alone, against the wishes of the entire world. In reality, it was only Saddam's trading partners France, Germany, Russia and China that were against us... but to Liberals, France and Germany ARE the world.

The media has the power to decide what stories from Iraq are reported, and how. If it weren't for smaller news outlets and the Internet, few of us would even realise that we are being deliberately and systematically robbed of Iraq war heroes. Few of us would realise how many people of how many nations are with us in this war, and how well they are doing in our common fight against terrorism.

The New York Times will probably never report the story of Corporal Samuel Toloza, one of 380 soldiers from El Salvador, which was carried in the Washington Times. Corporal Toloza, out of ammunition, bravely defended fallen members of his unit from Iraqi insurgents. He charged the enemy, armed only with a knife. "One of his friends was dead, 12 others lay wounded and the four soldiers still left standing were surrounded and out of ammunition. So Salvadoran Cpl. Samuel Toloza said a prayer, whipped out his knife and charged the Iraqi gunmen." The Iraqis broke, and more Coalition troops arrived before they could regroup. Phil Kosnett, who heads the CPA in Najaf, has nominated six El Salvadorans for the Bronze Star. "These guys are punching way above their weight," Kosnett said. "They're probably the bravest and most professional troops I've every worked with." Yet their story is almost completely buried by the mainstream media's endless liturgy of doom, gloom and quagmire.

You will probably never see the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders mentioned on ABC, CBS or NBC. When attacked by over 100 of Moqtada al-Sadr's so-called militia (in reality a gang of thugs with a religious motif), the 20 or so soldiers fixed bayonets and mounted a 19th-century style charge. Taking only three casualties, the Scots captured or killed 35 of the enemy. No American media outlet saw fit to even mention this action, except those who carry Mark Steyn's opinion column. Not one seems to have thought of the Highlanders' action as newsworthy.

Last but certainly not least, no major media outlet seems to have reported the brave self-sacrifice of Marine Corporal Jason Dunham except The Wall Street Journal. When a would-be terrorist captured during a traffic stop dropped a live grenade, Cpl. Dunham apparently pulled off his helmet and slammed it down on the grenade, covering it with his own body. He saved not only two nearby fellow Marines, but any civilians in the other cars in line as well. Lt. Col. Lopez has recommended Cpl. Dunham for the Congressional Medal of Honor. "His personal action was far beyond the call of duty and saved the lives of his fellow Marines," he wrote. The last Medals of Honor were awarded to the two Army Delta Force soldiers who gave their lives to protect a downed helicopter pilot in Somalia in 1993.

Why are the majority of news outlets ignoring these stories of bravery, honor, and self-sacrifice? Soldiers are only newsworthy, it seems, when their deaths can be used to turn popular opinion against President Bush and/or the liberation of Iraq. What right do "journalists" have to rob us of our heroes just to serve their anti-war, anti-Bush agenda... and still call themselves neutral? It's long past time to see through the lies and look at the mainstream media for what it really is.

UPDATE: Another hero ignored by the media, Marine Captain Brian R. Chontosh, recieved a well-deserved Navy Cross for "extraordinary heroism" for his actions in Iraq. He saved his platoon from being trapped in a kill zone by what has been characterised as a "ferocious" and "audacious" attack. When he ran out of ammunition for his rifle and pistol, he picked up two of the enemy's rifles and used them, and finally cleared the enemy using one of their own dropped RPGs. All in all, he killed twenty of the enemy and saved the lives of his fellow Marines. The media's stark refusal to report this incredible tale is an insult to every American. 

Thanks to Claudia at Freedom of Thought for finding this story.


Posted at Monday, May 31, 2004 by CavalierX
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