Monday, September 11, 2006

Five years later....

There is no running away from the requisite post about the 9/11 attacks today, and how it changed the world. I cannot believe it has already been five years , it seems like another lifetime.

Let me start by expressing my condolences once again to all the families who lost their loved ones on 9/11. May God help you move on with your life and bring you patience. Amen

This year there seems to be a concerted effort by all : media, governments, bloggers etc... .to ask 'how has your life changed after 9/11' ? or whether the world changed on that day ?

On that day, I was on vacation in the ME, it was afternoon and I had gone to visit a friend to use her internet connection. We had CNN- the international edition as background noise in the living room , and when I glanced up from the monitor, I saw the breaking news banner and footage of the first tower being hit. It's all so hazy now but for a split second I thought that CNN was advertising some new movie with a similar theme like Independence Day. So I did not pay attention and continued checking emails. The broadcast was continuing as H walked in with our late lunch, and we both looked and each other and grabbed the remote control to change to Al Jazeera TV. As I realised what had happened on the other side of the world and saw the second plane hitting the south tower 'live', while flipping between the various satellite channels only to settle on AJ and CNN while listening to the frantic analysis , speculations then accusations about it being an AQ signature attack; I felt deep sadness for the enormous loss of life and a deeper foreboding of the dark times awaiting .I imagined how a wounded giant would be hitting left and right in retaliation. I could not really blame that giant, because it had been delt a shocking blow yet I was praying that the giant had not been blinded and would see the truth.

Did I think the attacks were justified ? certainly not !
Do I think that this is terrorism ? Absolutely yes.
Do I sympathise with Americans? of course - we are all flesh and blood.

Certainly many countries rallyied around the US and expressed outrage, including Libya; messages of goodwill poured from all over the world.
But it would be hypocritical to say that this event is the most important one in history for the whole world, simply because for some people it may be their birthday or wedding anniversary, or they could be living in some village that never heard of America /Bin Ladin /Islamists/Bush or for others they could have experienced tragic attacks on their own countries and therefore have their own demons and ground zero.

Yet from my forrays into the blogosphere I'm aware that people have not forgotten and that 9/11 ( and its ramifications) are still a very hot topic and a raw wound. That means it has been a painful experience for America and the world ( Afghanistan, Iraq etc...) .

For example :

"Five years after the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, killed 2,973 in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., and New York, the country's mood is awash in emotions, balancing resolve with vulnerability, a need to remember with a desire to move on.[...] "People still talk about 9/11 as they did the first few months," said the Rev. Dr. Stuart Hoke of New York's Trinity Church. "It is one of the conversation topics at every event we attend -- every dinner party, every church gathering, it's still talked about with a great deal of intensity."" courtesy of
CNN

If this is so fresh and so painful for a one day attack ( not being callous here ) can you imagine how someone feels for years and years with no end in sight ? America has the right to seek justice but so have other nations.

On the personal level, nothing much changed for me (*) here DNA's words come in useful "[w]here I was raised, things like “civil liberties” were nothing but fancy text-book stuff. When push comes to shove, the po-lees have top dabs, whether you like it or not. It isn’t nice, it isn’t fair, but you get used to it, and you move on. "

(*) Disclaimer that is not meant as an offense but rather a comment on the quality of my life .



A lot of decisions were taken in the aftermath of the tragic attacks and the US wowed war on terror. I'm not here to judge the extend of the success of this war, but for many people in the US, I guess life has changed : the following are some statistics compiled by the BBC.

For others in the US life changed dramatically with some sort of witchhunts taking place after 9/11 .

Here is an unusual testimony which frankly disconcerted me:

I was an initial responder at the the World Trade Center. My son was six then. I didn't get a pin, even, and my son is not eligible for free camp and/or college scholarships, unlike the "9-11 families."
I am a woman. I am neither NYPD or NYFD altho' I took care of them. I called their unions to ask only that they help me put up a Christmas tree. I was physically incapable. Neither they nor the "9-11 families" responded. They also didn't respond further down the line when we were literally hungry.
I don't know why we aren't a "9-11 family" and I reckon my now 11 yo will wind up in foster care when my lungs give utheir final suck.
Some of us wish we were in those buildings.

Cynthia, Manhattan

(NO Comment)


An interesting poll/study was brought to my attention ( hattip you know who you are so if you want to be mentioned email me or say it out loud in the comment section :) ) . The article is called The Terrorism Index , from Foreign Policy and the Centre for American Progress.

Moneyshot :


"Despite today’s highly politicized national security environment, the
index results show striking consensus across political party lines. A bipartisan
majority (84 percent) of the index’s experts say the United States is not
winning the war on terror. Eighty-six percent of the index’s experts see a world
today that is growing more dangerous for Americans. Overall, they agree that the
U.S. government is falling short in its homeland security efforts. More than 8
in 10 expect an attack on the scale of 9/11 within a decade. These dark
conclusions appear to stem from the experts’ belief that the U.S. national
security apparatus is in serious disrepair.[...]Respondents sharply criticized
U.S. efforts in a number of key areas of national security, including public
diplomacy, intelligence, and homeland security. Nearly all of the departments
and agencies responsible for fighting the war on terror received poor marks. The
experts also said that recent reforms of the national security apparatus have
done little to make Americans safer. [..]The index’s experts were similarly
critical of most of the policy initiatives put forward by the U.S. Congress and
President George W. Bush since September 11. Eighty-one percent, for instance,
believe the detention of suspected terrorists at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba,
negatively affects the war on terror. The index’s experts also disapprove of how
America is handling its relations with European allies, how it is confronting
threatening regimes in North Korea and Iran, how it is controlling the spread of
weapons of mass destruction, and its dealings with failing states, to name just
a few. [..]To win the battle of ideas, the experts say, America must place a
much higher emphasis on its nonmilitary tools. More than two thirds say that
U.S. policymakers must strengthen the United Nations and other multilateral
institutions. At the same time, the experts indicate that the U.S. government
must think more creatively about threats. Asked what presents the single
greatest danger to U.S. national security, nearly half said loose nukes and
other weapons of mass destruction, while just one third said al Qaeda and
terrorism, and a mere 4 percent said Iran. Five years after the attacks of
September 11, it’s a reminder that the greatest challenges may still lie
ahead."


The war on terrorism although netting a lot of suspects does not seem to be faring well because it created more terrorists. It is worth noting that now President Bush is pushing for military tribunals for 'suspected terrorists', after admitting he okayed secret CIA prisons ( which were denied before) and tough interrogation techniques ( aka torture I guess no matter what he says ). Here is an analysis on why he may have changed his tune .



From all the above it looks like the results in the years to come will remain unchanged, because as already said you have to treat the cause and not the symptom. By treating the symptom you are giving an analgesic and putting a bandaid. This would only make the disease flare up stronger and deadlier.

I'll leave you with the words of Hani Hamdi an Arab -American from Boston also taken from the BBC 'have your say' forum ( where you can find hundreds of testimonies)

I'm a person of Arab origin living in the States.
9/11 was a despicable, horrifying incident. Unfortunately, I believe the US is less secure now.
Terrorism is not here because 1.2 billion Muslims hate US democracy.
Mid-East terrorism is spreading because US foreign policy is seen as supporting: 1) Israeli territorial expansion beyond its 1967 borders; 2) 40 years of occupation for millions of palestinians; 3) dictatorial and oppressive regimes in the middle east; and 4) the Iraq war which killed over 100,000 innocent civilians.
Terrorism will be cured by restoring strong moral credibility, and by surgically eliminating terrorists. This is not the US strategy today.
Hani Hamdi, Boston, United States


The above combined with action from our side in the ME against those warped minds would be the road map for the war on terror in a nutshell. May the world never witness again such an atrocity. Amen .

73 comments:

programmer craig said...

Hi Highlander,

Interesting post. Too much for me to comment on all of it, really, so I just picked one thing that caught my eye :)

I could not really blame that giant, because it had been delt a shocking blow yet I was praying that the giant had not been blinded and would see the truth.

What do you think the truth is? And do you think we saw it?

I'm going to go ahead and assume that we did not see your truth (whatever that is) because we don't live in your world. But I'm curious what you think America should have taken away from 9/11?

programmer craig said...

PS-That BBC article is bullshit. As usual. They allow an anonymous woman to claim she was a first responder, even though she admits she had no official status in the city of New York. Why wasn't that challenged? Virtually every person who was in Manhatten in September in 2001 could make the same claim. That was a smear. I'd like to say I expect better vof the BBC (and the British) but I absolutely don't. It's standard operating procedure to vilify America in the British press.

Highlander said...

Elementary my dear Programmer_Craig :) : not to be quick to judge that all Muslims hate democracy and freedom. That was my first thought when I was watching TV on that day. Thank you for reading the whole post, I know how long it is .

programmer craig said...

OK... sorry... I lied... I can't let it go with 1 little comment :)

The war on terrorism although netting a lot of suspects does not seem to be faring well because it created more terrorists.

As fighting crime creates more criminals. And fighting Nazis created more Nazis. Yes! It's common sense! We should have known! The best way to protect yourself from an aggressor is to submit, not to fight! It's the new normal! Why don't we get it?

It is worth noting that now President Bush is pushing for military tribunals for 'suspected terrorists'

Yep! They are to be charged with war crimes! Just as NBA wanted. You're hapopy about this one, I'm sure, NBA. Everyone who has been complaining the prisoners of war were being held without being charged with crimes, is now a happy person. Very very happy. Right?

From all the above it looks like the results in the years to come will remain unchanged

I don't think so, Highlander. When 80% of a population believe they are losing a war, do they let teh status quo continue? They just blindly march to the doom they see on the horizon?

I can't predict the future. But I do not believe things will remain the same. And I don't believe Americans plan on losing this war. We view militant Islam as an existential threat. I know... very funny. Haha. But it remains true, nontheless.

I assume you quoted this man because you agree with him, so I'll respond as if you said it, Highlander:

Mid-East terrorism is spreading because US foreign policy is seen as supporting:

1) Israeli territorial expansion beyond its 1967 borders;

2) 40 years of occupation for millions of palestinians;

3) dictatorial and oppressive regimes in the middle east; and

4) the Iraq war which killed over 100,000 innocent civilians.

This man is basically saying arabs/muslims are attacking America because we refuse to do what they want.

He's stating the obvious. Terrorism is violent political/religious extortion.

Yes. He gets it.

Terrorism will be cured by restoring strong moral credibility,

In other words, submitting to the demands of the terrorists. The extortionists. That's how we defeat terrorism. By rewarding it.

Huh. Good on him. Something tells me he isn't on America's side. Because I don't believe he's stupid enough to believe that his suggestion would amount to a victory for America. He's suggesting total surrender on every issue.

and by surgically eliminating terrorists. This is not the US strategy today.

This man is suggesting we treat the symptom and not the cause, right here. He explicitly suggests that, right there in that one sentence.

This is what you just said was a bad idea.


I also agree we must treat the cause and not the symptoms, Highlander. However, I don't think the cause is America's foreign policy. I think the cause is that a large percentage of muslim arabs think they have the God given right (more, the duty!) to attempt to force their will on the innocent.

That thinking must change. Or the people who think that way, must die.

We have been trying to change the thinking the last 5 years. 84% of Americans think we are failing wiuth changing the thinking. What is the logical next step for us, Highlander? Discounting your suggestion that we surrender, I mean.

programmer craig said...

one more comment before I get back to work :)

Kinda off topic but not so much. I'd really like to see you do a comparison of militant Islam in the past and compare it to today's "terrorism" - I see a lot of similarities, and I'd like to see where (and why) you don't agree. (I'm sure you don't)

The main difference I see between the 20th and 21st century and what was happening in the 9th to the fall of the Otooman Empire is that jihadis no longer have to use mere sworsd to get their point across. They have explosives, and soon they will have nuclear weapons.

But just as happened in the past, militiant Islam will eventually run afoul of somebody who is stronger, and is completely intolerant of their coercive tactics. I think that ha already happened, but we haven't seen the end result yet. Islam never even recovered from the last time it was stopped in it's tracks, and the jihadis are trying to start it up again. Islam may not survive at all this time, Highlander. You know that, don't you? It wouldn't take all that much to have Islam declared an illegal death cult by the other 6 billion people on the planet. Seriously. I don't think you realize how close to that precipace Islam is. It all dpends on how successful America is in the next few years, and what scale of attack the terrorists are able to mount.

AlanK said...

highlander

Interesting post, also have my own september 11 post, although not quite as detailed and long as your own

Not sure about those being asked about the danger now, possible the risk before september 11 was higher of terror attacks, with less resources trying to counter the many attacks planned before then,

It seems that terrorism will always exist, no matter what, perhaps to reduce it like John Kerry quote we have to get back to the place we were, where terrorists are not the focus of our lives, but they're a nuisance." is the best thing that can be done

also perhaps best thing to look on today was that possibility of some peace process starting in the middle east again, to end the violence in isreal and palestine. Although it will not stop terrorism, after all terrorists will find another excuse eg Iraq, Lebannon, Iran, Saudia Arabia, Pakistan, Chechnya etc it might reduce its "appeal"

Highlander, what is your opinion about what should have been done after september 11 attacks

tommy said...

Ditto on PC's first comment: interesting post. Thanks Highlander.

Libyan Warrior( KING OF AL-ANDLUS) said...

I wrote a very LONG comment, but out of respect for highlander, i shall not post it, and I shall not participate in this one, becuase let me just say Craigs "Americans Are the Victims Crap" really pisses me off more then words could possibly explain. Especially after everything that has happened. So I Will be Silent.

Libyan Warrior( KING OF AL-ANDLUS) said...

p.S One last thing. how can u possibly call anyone a War Criminal your president Is George W Bush and you are a American. your people have perpatrated some of the most heniouse war crimes imanganable, HOW DARE U!!!!!!! call anyone a war criminal!!!!!!!!

100,00 people have been killed in Iraq in the last 4 months. Thats all I am gonna say, i wont talk about all the countless poor sould who died in the Buildings that Israel bombed in Lebonan with US Bombs. Can U explain to me what Lebonan Did to the US craig, can U explain what iraq did to the US craig, that would cause u to dose them with chemical weapons??? That would make u kill the majority of the population, that would make u destroy one of the best countries one of the most bdeveloped countries, in the Middle East. And you sir have the AUDACITY to play the Victim. Well Fuck u and Fuck the 3000 in the towers, i am glad they are dead. And I hope they all burn in hell. I am not highlander and i will not smile in your face, and speak with a low tone, and Attempt to "UNDERSTAND U". the Quicker highlander realizes this the better. CHRISTIANS CAN NOT BE REASONED WITH. Thats it. End of Discussion. Just take a look at the Bible and thats all u have to see to know that the clash of civilizations is inevitable.


Way Before binladin the US has been funding the terrorist state of israel for their perverted Christian belifes. This terrorist state which is funded by the US has led a campaign of genocide like non the world has ever seen. christian facism must be stoped in my opinion. look at what the christians belive Highlander.

Numbers 31:17-18 (King James Version)
King James Version (KJV)
Public Domain

17. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him.

18. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

What type of sick religion is this. kill all the Boys, Women and Men and rape the little girls??? Many christians claim that this is no longer followed but The US evangelical Support for Israel and its genocide prove otherwise, and the Massacres in iraq prove that Christians are still following their bibles. These people highlander belive this is the word of god their is no reasoning with these savages. they hate u and they hate me and they would like nothing more then to kill us all. And tak our oil.

tommy said...

Good job sitting this one out LW. LOL.

programmer craig said...

Americans Are the Victims Crap

Libyan Warrior, you pigfaced whore, how can Americans be the victims? All the pundits are saying that we are losing this war. As any analyst of Middle-Eastern history can tell you, the "victims" always come out ahead. See Lebanon with all the whining and crying about Israeli aggression, followed immediately by the gloating proclamations that Israel had sufferred a humiliating defeat, for a recent example. But you can go back in history 1000 years and find that it's always the same story in the middle east. Plead for a ceasfire, on your knees if necessary, when you're losing... and then treacherosuly stab your enemy in the back when he's not expecting it, and declare heroic victory. And don't forget to accuse your enemy of desrveing to be stabbed in the back, though! Very important! That way, everybody knows you are the victim! Even though you won... and, well, your enemies are all fucked up and dead or enslaved, or forced to convert to Islam, or whatevr. It's theiur own damn fault for humiliating your honor by accepting your truce/ceasefire/surrender/whatever, right? And they were just kafirs anyway.

Pity, in the middle east, is for fools.

programmer craig said...

BTW, LibyanWarrior, I see I scored a lot of points against you, from your reaction. Thanks! You made my day!

Curt from Houston said...

Programmer Craig, let me suggest the obvious answer here. But first let me restate the real and repeatedly stated reason why we are in Iraq. It is to give the people of the Middle East their last and best chance to abandon their self destructive obsessions and reject the growing branch of Islam that has become nothing more than a death cult, or face the real wrath of the West. I just finished watching The Path to 9/11. My tolerance level for the Muslim victimology BS has once again been reset to zero. It has been the personally stated belief of Osama Bin Laden and his ilk, on film sent to Al Jazeera, that it would be better for Muslims to die than coexist with the infidels. I, at this point, am all for giving him his wish. It is now or never for the good people like you Highlander to take back their religion and great culture. Otherwise, we will have no choice but to remove it.

If there is a weapons of mass destruction attack carried out in the United States or one of our close allies, The Arab/Muslim world will not see the next day.

Sorry Highlander. If it comes down to me and my family or yours, I think you would understand. The lunatic in Iran is seeking just such weapons. Do you trust him not to use them on us? Even by proxy? Do you think that Americans will be picky about who we obliterate once we have lost several million of our own citizens? Is your country ready to accept the fury that America will become if he does? The Soviets were deterred by the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) do the fanatics in Tehran feel the same way?

You have suggested that we over reacted to 9/11. Trust me when I say that our reaction was restrained to a fault, a mistake that we will not make twice.

Highlander, I spent six years in the United States Navy and am fully aware of what a single ballistic missile submarine is capable of. I was in fact an anti-submarine warfare specialist. One of them could erase every major city in the Middle East. We have eighteen of them. I am not trying to be threatening or belligerent. I am merely stating a cold hard fact. You good people have to get a grip on the fanatics or we will destroy your civilization. Osama is playing a fools hand.

Curt from Houston said...

Programmer Craig, let me suggest the obvious answer here. But first let me restate the real and repeatedly stated reason why we are in Iraq. It is to give the people of the Middle East their last and best chance to abandon their self destructive obsessions and reject the growing branch of Islam that has become nothing more than a death cult, or face the real wrath of the West. I just finished watching The Path to 9/11. My tolerance level for the Muslim victimology BS has once again been reset to zero. It has been the personally stated belief of Osama Bin Laden and his ilk, on film sent to Al Jazeera, that it would be better for Muslims to die than coexist with the infidels. I, at this point, am all for giving him his wish. It is now or never for the good people like you Highlander to take back their religion and great culture. Otherwise, we will have no choice but to remove it.

If there is a weapons of mass destruction attack carried out in the United States or one of our close allies, The Arab/Muslim world will not see the next day.

Sorry Highlander. If it comes down to me and my family or yours, I think you would understand. The lunatic in Iran is seeking just such weapons. Do you trust him not to use them on us? Even by proxy? Do you think that Americans will be picky about who we obliterate once we have lost several million of our own citizens? Is your country ready to accept the fury that America will become if he does? The Soviets were deterred by the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) do the fanatics in Tehran feel the same way?

You have suggested that we over reacted to 9/11. Trust me when I say that our reaction was restrained to a fault, a mistake that we will not make twice.

Highlander, I spent six years in the United States Navy and am fully aware of what a single ballistic missile submarine is capable of. I was in fact an anti-submarine warfare specialist. One of them could erase every major city in the Middle East. We have eighteen of them. I am not trying to be threatening or belligerent. I am merely stating a cold hard fact. You good people have to get a grip on the fanatics or we will destroy your civilization. Osama is playing a fools hand.

tommy said...

It is to give the people of the Middle East their last and best chance to abandon their self destructive obsessions and reject the growing branch of Islam that has become nothing more than a death cult, or face the real wrath of the West.

Nah. I don't think anybody went to war in Iraq under the pretense that we are giving the Mideast its "last chance."

Realizations gleaned from this war will undoubtedly be incorporated into future perspectives in dealing with the Mideast, but I don't think Iraq is a test run for the Coming Arab Apocalypse. We will, however, get smarter.

I think that developments will not favor the view that democracy and Islam are compatible. Which is unfortunate. I also think any future actions in the Mideast will be made on the basis of greater national self-interest rather than altruism, as well. Military operations will be defined in more concrete terms in the future.

These tendencies may not be particularly liked by some Arabs, I'm afraid. Still, a democratic spirit is something that must be developed from within a nation. Ultimately, it comes down to the Arabs to change their societies. Westerners can (and should) only provide aid to those seeking to change their cultures, we cannot create the activists themselves.

And yes, while we are waiting for change, we should take common sense measures to protect our own societies such as restricting immigration as needed.

Non-Blogging said...

I won't comment the Craig & Libyan Warrior cockfight here, just a couple of other things ;-).

Highlander,

I almost fully agree with what you've written, so no need to comment more on that. If, however, you quoted Hani Hamdi from Boston because you fully agree with his points, that's something I disagree with. Terrorists always find "justified" reasons to do harm to outsiders. If the occupation of a small piece of Middle Eastern land ended, it would be Chechnya, Kosovo or Andalucia. Most countries and people in the world - mine included - have lost territories and fellow citizens in an unjustified way. The cream of the crop get over it and build a future instead of feeding bitterness for past events and avenging innocents because of them.

But the rest was great, balanced and analytical.

Craig,

PS-That BBC article is bullshit. As usual. They allow an anonymous woman to claim she was a first responder, even though she admits she had no official status in the city of New York. Why wasn't that challenged?

The woman (not really anonymous, she gave her given name) commented in the feedback section of a BBC article. BBC allows comments like that exactly like Highlander allows you to comment here with your first name only without challenging if you're really an ex-Marine or me commenting even without my first name without challenging what I've written about myself. That's called interaction between the media and its users ;-).

It is worth noting that now President Bush is pushing for military tribunals for 'suspected terrorists'

Yep! They are to be charged with war crimes! Just as NBA wanted. You're hapopy about this one, I'm sure, NBA. Everyone who has been complaining the prisoners of war were being held without being charged with crimes, is now a happy person. Very very happy. Right?


Still not completely happy but this is a morally important step forward to behaving like a normal civilized country. One just wonders why it took so long. Other similar steps should follow, though.

Are you yourself happy or unhappy about that decision ;-)?

I don't believe either that what this guy from Boston wrote is all about submission. Terrorists do want to topple the despotic regimes in the Middle East. The latter part is of course OK, it's just that I definitely don't want to see them in power afterwards. However, some of the terrorists' opponents - former or current governments in Iraq, Alegria, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia etc. - are not necessarily much better or democratic than their opponents; some are cleverly misusing the Islamist threat to gather naive Western support for their despotism while in the ideal situation the countries would be led by real democrats.

Curt,

First of all it's very childish to boast about the weapons you've used or your country has in its disposal. I guess normally young kids do that to make an impression.

Secondly, even if Iran developed nuclear weapons and used them against the USA, what on Earth would Libya have to do with that in order to justify a retaliation? I don't get the idea. Look at the map, they're quite faraway countries indeed and now the Libyan leader is even a US ally.

Thirdly, what about Pakistan's nuclear weapons, are you not worried about them? All in all, they're in the hands of a military dictator whose only real alternative might be even worse. This all in a country that has sold nuclear secrets to Iran, which is deeply corrupted, was the staunchest ally of the Taliban pre-9/11 and is currently only doing a half-hearted effort to combat terrorism except for in words. It's also very likely that due to Pakistan's official reluctance and dissent in their military and intelligence, OBL and the rest of the AQ leaders are living free in that country, presumably a staunch ally in the war on terror.

That's something we should be afraid of, shouldn't we? At least this is an already existing threat while the Iranian one is only in the pipeline.

Tommy,

I guess you supported the invasion of Iraq back then. Would be very interested in why (if I'm correct). Did you buy then the lies about WMD's and Iraq's links with Al-Qaida or did you see it already then as a first step towards democratizing the Middle East with a domino effect?

Libyan Warrior( KING OF AL-ANDLUS) said...

It is now or never for the good people like you Highlander to take back their religion and great culture. Otherwise, we will have no choice but to remove it.




WOW. Its very hard to do that do do to the FACT THAT THE US IS FUNDING THE PERVERTERS OF ISLAM!!!!!!
I am not ignorant of the situation. i know what is going on. The US has Created and promoted its puppets to spread a negative image about Islam. OBL and Al-Quidas actions, as well as that of all the "MUSLIM" Fundamentalists. Go in direct contrediction with the orthodox teachings of Islam,what OBL, Saudi Arabia, and every other US funded pervert preaches, is the exact oppisite of what Islam preaches. And hence I have come to the conclusion that any individual that OBL and his band of Ass Monkies are a ploy by the US and the Enemies of Islam to pervert Islam, and scare as many peopleaway from the Faith of Truth as they possibly can.
OBL is a product of the United States, and I am 100% dead sure that he is working with the US government in a plot to pervert Islam. The US has funded all of the enemies which it has claimed to be fighting, the US has no sincere desire to lok out for our great religion or history, it has only the desire to Subjagate us with currupt puppet governments. the US is run by radical christian facists, who will not stop until all muslims have been cleansed from the earth and all of the middle East from the nile to the Euphrates is labeled as ISRAEL. the US will not stop until the destrory Al-Aqsa mosque, and build the third shrine because they belive that Jesus(PBUH) shall come only when this has occured. Please stop playing the moral high ground, and just admit it. Stop talking about freedom and democracy and just admit that these are the US is objectives. The US is not looking to co-exist with anyone, and they are not looking to help anyone either. As far as wiping out Islam, u have another thing coming if that is your aims curt. 1 1/2 billion and growing will not disappear over night, and neither will nuclear pakistan, and neither will Iran. So let me just tell u this. The More the US pushes with its Christian facist Ideology the more support the Iranian Nuclear program gets. i would not make theats u can not back up. iran controls Iraq, and thank god they do, Iran controls the Gulf and Any move by the US against Iran will cause the majority of the worlds OIl to stop. And South America is 100% behind us as well. Yes WW3 is coming, and their is no denying it. the Lines have been drwn it shall be Islamic Socialims versus the heartless barbaric Chrisian Capatilist facists.


Just finished watching The Path to 9/11. My tolerance level for the Muslim victimology BS has once again been reset to zero.

WOW. The fact that u belive what is in a Fictional TV Movie, and pass it off as knowledge of the current global situations speaks numbers of your ignorance and stupidity Curt.

programmer craig said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
programmer craig said...

Libyan Pizzaface, what was that about perverts?

programmer craig said...

Hmmm.... had to delete a comment because I somehow accidentally threatened to annihilate India. Must be my childish temper tantrums kicking in again, eh, NBA? :P

Anyway...

Curt, good comment. That's the vibe I'm getting too, and the vibe I'm feeling. Most people I know (talking about Americans here) are not unhappy because they think the US response has been too much. They are unhappy because they think the US response has been too little. And in the case of Iraq, misguided. (I disagree with you about Iraq)

And there is no doubt in my mind that large parts of the earth will become radioactive wastelands if the US loses a city to a nuclear terrorist attack. It seems like it's obvious to me, but every time I've pointed it out people have called me an alarmist. Or worse :) But none of those people who called me an alarmist were Americans. Seems the rest of the world is about as out of touch with the US as we are with them.

On that note, I forgot to comment on this part of Highlander's post:

Asked what presents the single
greatest danger to U.S. national security, nearly half said loose nukes and other weapons of mass destruction, while just one third said al Qaeda and terrorism, and a mere 4 percent said Iran.


This question was poorly framed. If the US takes a nuke (or more than one) it will be either Al Qaeda or Iran behind it. These numbers just show that most Americans feel that we face a serious danger of terrorists using nuclear weapons against us.

That is a very BAD poll result, when it comes to gauging US public sentiment. At least for anybody who wishes there to be peace any time soon. There isn't anything that scares americans (or any other sane human being) more than the thought of nuclear war. And over half of us think we are likely to be attacked by nukes in the near future.

Bad. Very very bad. If that number gets much higher, I would not be surprised by a pre-emptive first strike (nuclear) against both Pakistan and Iran. At this point in time, we have a very good chance of destroying the capacity of both countries to counter-attack, before they get a chance to use nuclear weapons against us.

That is a doctrinal approach, by the way (meant for those who don't know US nuclear doctrine. I'm sure Curt does). And I'd expect it to be used, if the threat (or the perceived threat) becomes large enough. We don't even know what the hell is going on in Pakistan anymore, now that they made peace with the Mujahedin.

NBA,

BBC allows comments like that exactly like Highlander

Perhaps they shouldn't. Or, perhaps Highlander shouldn't copy paste such comments in her blog, since none of us have the opportunity to challenge the original commenter.

I'd rather the BBC just ended the hatemongering against the US though. It's sickening. The Brits are supposed to be our allies. BBC is more anti-American than Al Jazeera is. Seriously. And Highlander can tell you I am no fan of Al Jazeera :)

Still not completely happy but this is a morally important step forward to behaving like a normal civilized country.

It's interesting that a guy who sees the world in shades of gray would speak of morality. *shrug*

I see nothing immoral in having held those prisoners as long as we have, without trial. And longer. Neither immoral nor illegal. And I've explained why at great length. I gave you the required references to do your own research on the laws pertaining to prisoners of war.

PoWs get held for the duration. Unless the nation holding the prisoners decides to parole some or all of them, at THEIR OWN DISCRETION.

You know what would be IMMORAL, NBA?

Releasing known or suspected terrorist prisoners. We would have the blood of any innocent those bastards killed in the future on OUR HANDS.

One just wonders why it took so long. Other similar steps should follow, though.

Such as?

Are you yourself happy or unhappy about that decision ;-)?

Yes, I'm happy. I don't want them to ever be realeased. Ever. No, not ever. The terrorist hijacker who murdered an American and threw his body out on the tarmac at Beirut International Airport in 1985 was realeased by Germany a year ago. He has rejoined Hezbollah and particpated in the recent terrorist attacks on Israel.

No. No release for terrorists. Not ever. That's the MORAL position to take. Evil, once contained, should never be released. Not EVER.

Did I say, absoultely NEVER should they be realeased, yet!?

Hmmm. Yes. War Crimes trials make me happy. The sentence for war crimes is death. Death is what they deserve and I pray that death is what they recieve.

Look at the bright side. They will be martyrs.

Adam said...

Nice post Highlander, even the softest guys were getting tired of all the handbag fluff:) But I will try to keep my posts short.

Curt says:
You have suggested that we over reacted to 9/11. Trust me when I say that our reaction was restrained to a fault, a mistake that we will not make twice.

Exactly what should have been done? Nukes? Destroy more countries? Give us your list, thank you.

Not one of us here liked Saddam. Not one! But the destruction of Iraq only produced chaos. That chaos has made the world more dangerous for everybody. Even Craig has said that he did not support the Iraq war!

Do you think that a similar chaos in Iran would create more or less fanatics??

Non-Blogging, the great blogger!! Excellent point on Pakistan. The powers that be have shown flagrant double standars on Nukes/Pakistan/Iran. Thanks dude. Ah well back to work, before I get fired :)

Non-Blogging said...

Craig,

By the way, remember that the poll/study we're referring to was done among the US political elite. The general public thinks differently on many issues which you can read in that link.

BBC allows comments like that exactly like Highlander

Perhaps they shouldn't. Or, perhaps Highlander shouldn't copy paste such comments in her blog, since none of us have the opportunity to challenge the original commenter.


Yes, all we do. We just go to the BBC website and leave our comments there if we wish. You're free to do that as well ;-).

I've never left a comment there but I personally like very much that kind of, increasingly popular interaction between the media and its users.

It's interesting that a guy who sees the world in shades of gray would speak of morality. *shrug*

He he he. There's big evil, little evil, questionable evil, slightly good, very good, good but, divine and all the others shades of grey one can imagine. It's not that the world is divided into absolute good and absolute evil. A pickpocket is not good but neither as bad as a terrorist or mass murderer ;-).

One just wonders why it took so long. Other similar steps should follow, though.

Such as?


The BBC article Highlander linked has some suggestions. Personally, I think the most important thing to do would be just stopping the bullying and putting oneself above others. By this I mean behaviour showing that some important people in the US think they are no ordinary people but above criticism and punishment. That kind of behaviour is disturbing to me as I usually associate it with rogue states, despotic regimes and dictatorships, not democracies, exactly the type of countries the US officially wants to see the world without. It's also very questionable what the benefits of this behaviour are, if there are any.

For example, it wouldn't hurt if the USA made an effort to join the International Criminal Court. Not because there would then be a war crime charge readily available but to show that the US doesn't think it's a demigod.

If you look at the map in the link below, for example, I wouldn't say the US is there in a very good company (well, neither are all the signatory countries very nice, I admit). The US is shown on the map in the same colour as all the Axis of Evil countries, for example.

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

Hmmm. Yes. War Crimes trials make me happy. The sentence for war crimes is death. Death is what they deserve and I pray that death is what they recieve.

Then it should make you very very happy that your country signed the ICC treaty and participated in punishing war crimes at the highest possible level, unlike it's doing now, I guess :-).

Maya M said...

I agree with Programmer Craig and Curt. I wish to add that Cynthia's complaint reminds me my early youth. Then, the official Bulgarian media kept reporting how in America and other capitalist countries the poor exploited people have nothing to eat and sleep under bridges.
I know little about Kerry, but his words quoted by Alan are interesting. I also think that, while the intelligence and military people should pay the needed attention to terrorists, civilians must regard them as a nuisance. No matter how much they harm us and how many of us they kill, the survivors mustn't let terror affect their behaviour. E.g. after Madrid train bombings, Spaniard should have said, "How many people did you manage to kill? 200? Nothing special. Try and kill 200000, then we may give an ear to you. But we say we MAY, we promise nothing." Instead, Spanish voters rewarded terrorists by doint exactly what they wanted.
Alas, to have even minimal chance to win a war, you must lose much of the sensitivity to human life and death that characterizes civilized people. Otherwise, you must just submit.
Our history shows that rewarding terror isn't a good idea. When USSR occupied Bulgaria in 1944, the Communist terrorists were installed to power, first in a puppet coalition, then alone. This is exactly what all radical and most "moderate" Muslims actually propose as the way to end terror. Eh well, I assure everybody that it is far better to have classical terrorists in opposition than the same people in power.

programmer craig said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
programmer craig said...

Enjoyed your comment as usual, Maya. It's good to see that not all EUropeans are in opposition to the US :)

Adam,

Do you think that a similar chaos in Iran would create more or less fanatics??

Be careful before invoking me as being somebody on your side. I do support an attack on Iran, if necessary, and I would have supported it 5 years ago too. Iran is both an enemy of the United States and a country that is actively ivolved in international terrorism.

Don't take this is an invitation to start hurling anti-American rantings my way, please :)

Non-Blogging,

The general public thinks differently on many issues which you can read in that link.

I'm not sure how you come to that conclusion, NBA. I keep hearing non-Americans telling me what Americans really think, and what American public opinion is. Why don't you try asking soem Americans instead of watching Al Jazeera and BBC? You might learn something, and you might become less confused about why we behave in ways that seems so irrational to you. For iunstance, the vast majority of Americans support the Guantanamo Bay detentions, despite what you're saying about it being "uncivilized" behavior.

By this I mean behaviour showing that some important people in the US think they are no ordinary people but above criticism and punishment.

I'm not sure what you mean. No offical in the United States is above punishment. Any elected offical can be impeached, and most are subject to electoral recall. And those are only two methods Americans have for dealing with bad governance.

Or do you mean punished by some world body? Not gonna happen, NBA. Don't even go there. You think we are going to allow people who despise the United States to sit in judgemnet on our governemnt? Dream on.

For example, it wouldn't hurt if the USA made an effort to join the International Criminal Court.

I'll be willing to discuss this idea to you when the ICC indicts Hassan Nasrallah for cross-border kidnapping and murder.

You'd have us a join an international kangaroo court. Make it a legitimate court and then come talk to us. We're not really that stupid, you know. The only people who will ever be charged by that court are Europeans, Israelis and Americans. But, who are we kidding? The court exists to prosecute Israelis and Americans. Since Israel and the US have declined participation in it, the court sits idle.

While some of the worst human rights abuses in history go not only unpunished, but unchallenged.

I like the idea of an international system of justice, NBA. I really do. But we're no place near being able to implement it. Look at the mess the UN has made these last 60 years. Does the UN have a single success under it's belt? Even one?

Tater said...

"Does the UN have a single success under it's belt? Even one?"

Well I'd rate Korea as a success, didn't actually win, but the UN didn't lose either; and for the UN (or any ME country) that's a MASSIVE success!! ;-)

Me thinks you're letting fools get under your skin a bit there PC, you should know better!

But I did enjoy your comments...

Later

Non-Blogging said...

Craig,

Waiting for your answer to Adam's question as well instead of accusations of anti-American rants. Would be very interesting to hear your opinion on Pakistan's WMD's as well.

The general public thinks differently on many issues which you can read in that link.

I'm not sure how you come to that conclusion, NBA. I keep hearing non-Americans telling me what Americans really think, and what American public opinion is. Why don't you try asking soem Americans instead of watching Al Jazeera and BBC?


But I'm sure and I told it to you in my previous comment already. Check the popular front button in the sidebar of the link or if that's too complicated, here's the direct link which shows how differently the experts think from the American general public:

http://web1.foreignpolicy.com/issue_julyaug_2006/TI-index/thepopularfront.html

So, you can see, it's not from BBC or Al-Jazeera, the latter of which I even have no access to.

For iunstance, the vast majority of Americans support the Guantanamo Bay detentions, despite what you're saying about it being "uncivilized" behavior.

That something is popular doesn't make it civilized or uncivilized. Or would you for example call Hizbollah a civilized organization because it's popular in Lebanon? I wouldn't ;-).

Or do you mean punished by some world body? Not gonna happen, NBA. Don't even go there. You think we are going to allow people who despise the United States to sit in judgemnet on our governemnt? Dream on.

OK, let's ask this in a shorter way. Do you think the US government has the right to judge other countries while at the same time it reserves itself the right not to be judged by others? If that's your line of thinking, you are either biased or should logically reserve all countries in the world the right to judge and punish others as they deem best and at the same time think they're themselves above punishment.

That wouldn't be my ideal world, though.

For example, it wouldn't hurt if the USA made an effort to join the International Criminal Court.

I'll be willing to discuss this idea to you when the ICC indicts Hassan Nasrallah for cross-border kidnapping and murder.


Neither Israel nor Lebanon is party to the ICC, so that's impossible. Show them good example.

The only people who will ever be charged by that court are Europeans, Israelis and Americans. But, who are we kidding? The court exists to prosecute Israelis and Americans.

And this claim shows you suffer from some paranoia and lack of knowledge how the ICC works. Click the link I provided to learn the basics. For example, you'd learn that before any American individual would be charged there for, for example, a war crime, he would have first needed to commit one after which he would be tried in the US judicial system and in the ICC only if the ICC thought the US judicial system didn't treat the case well.

As we all know the US is above all criticism for its ways of waging a war and that the judicial system is perfect, that would surely be just theoretical.

While some of the worst human rights abuses in history go not only unpunished, but unchallenged.

That's very true, and many of them are committed by US (and European) allies. Show them an example. You can't demand punishment and judicial procedures for anyone as long as you're not willing to put yourself even in the theoretical situation where you could be charged.

tommy said...

Actually, Non-Blogging, I didn't support the war in Iraq. I certainly did believe Iraq possessed substantial WMDs, however. (I still believe Saddam may have, with the help of the Russians, ditched them in Syria.) I wasn't strongly convinced that Bush had made the case that Iraq was substantially more likely to give its WMDs to terrorists than countries like Iran and Syria. Furthermore, I have a great deal of faith in the notion that Islam and democracy are compatible.

I felt that if we were going to invade Iraq anyway, we should quickly partition in the country and let the natives figure the rest out. (Civil war will likely lead to partition anyway.) I thought we should also eliminate Saddam, the Baath leadership, and the WMDs. Winning hearts and minds and fostering democracy, on the other hand, are not concrete goals.

tommy said...

I wrote:

I have a great deal of faith in the notion that Islam and democracy are compatible.

I meant:

I don't have a great deal of faith in the notion that Islam and democracy are compatible.

Adam said...

Craig, you took my question: ”Do you think that a similar chaos in Iran would create more or less fanatics??” and replied as if it had been directed at you. Well, it simply wasn't.

That question was addressed to Curt. Maybe you thought of something else I said: “Even Craig has said that he did not support the Iraq war!”

” Be careful before invoking me as being somebody on your side.” I never said that you r on my side.” But:

As you well know I can dig up more than one quote from you on what you have said about the Iraq war. Your exact phrases such as ”mixed feelings” , “neocon brainstorm” and more, do not put you on the same side as me. (-: In fact, like NB, I do not regard this as just “sides”, as you well know by now :-)

But your own words about Iraq do not agree with Curt’s phrases either: "...our reaction was restrained to a fault...”

That is all I meant, no less, no more.

Adam said...

Non-Blogging man! Sometimes it is easy to see why Pumpkin is in love with your brain. Right side, left side & cortex !

"OK, let's ask this in a shorter way. Do you think the US government has the right to judge other countries while at the same time it reserves itself the right not to be judged by others?"

I too am expecting an answer...

programmer craig said...

NBA, I think I "answered" everything tht I wanted to answer, but I'll give it a second go-around just for you, because I like you :)

Waiting for your answer to Adam's question as well instead of accusations of anti-American rants. Would be very interesting to hear your opinion on Pakistan's WMD's as well.

What exactly are you accusing me of in regards to Pakistan, NBA? I confess, I'm too lazy to go back through these commenst and try to find exactly which accusation of American misconduct you expect me to answer for. Could you summarize?

In the meantime, I'll just say that I think Pakistan is going to be very sorry it decided to jump on the nuclear bandwagon, before all is said and done.

here's the direct link which shows how differently the experts think from the American general public:

I didn't see any way that the general public disagrees with the experts in a way that is favorable to your European attitudes, though, NBA... so I stand by my assertion that you don't really know what's going on with us. Example:

How likely is a major terrorist attack on America this year?

Experts: 35% likely
Public: 66% likely


OK, moving on...

So, you can see, it's not from BBC or Al-Jazeera, the latter of which I even have no access to.

You have the same access to both that I do. They are both on the internet.

That something is popular doesn't make it civilized or uncivilized. Or would you for example call Hizbollah a civilized organization because it's popular in Lebanon? I wouldn't ;-).

It depends on the society in which the action is popular, I suppose. I think it's laughable for Europeans to criticize the US holding PoWs at Guantanmo under legal and humane conditions for behaving in an "uncivilized" manner. Have you forgotten the Balkans? It wasn't that long ago!

In WHICH war did Europeans EVER treat prisoners as well as we Americans do, NBA? Show me the wall that we lined civilians up against for execution? Show me the mass graves wheer Americans buried the dead?

Europeans calling America uncivilized. Thanks for the input. But tell you what... you do things your way, and we'll do things our way, and lets leave it at that.

Do you think the US government has the right to judge other countries while at the same time it reserves itself the right not to be judged by others?

When has the US ever "judged" another country without having goe to war with them first, NBA?

Can you give me some examples? Concrete ones, not just your perception of reality, I mean.

I skipped all your commentary about the ICC because I consider it to be nonsense. Colin Powell was charged in a Belgian Court with War Crimes for the first Gulf War. What assurance do we have such stupidties would never happen again? So, a frivolous charge gets laughed out of US court, and the ICC gets to decide that the US hasn't handled it properly?

We haven't forgotten that you just gave Harold Pinter, the most ravingly anti-American hatemonger in the history of man, the nobel prize last year, NBA. Keep your insanity on that side of the ocean, please. You don't want to go to war with America, and if Europeans had their way, that's exactly what would end up happening. You'd push us one step too far, in no time flat.

I'll try to answer the rest later on, dinner time for me :)

Maya M said...

"Do you think the US government has the right to judge other countries while at the same time it reserves itself the right not to be judged by others?"
I think that, generally, this is what a superpower means.
I am for Pax Americana. If somebody has another idea of a world order, let's see it and estimate the chance for it to work. But, please, without suggestions how wonderful would it be if everybody just were nice. I always wonder when I hear the epithete "world policeman" being used as an insult. Don't people imagine what would it be to live in a district without police?
This discussion makes me feel uncomfortable, because I remember a quote from the pre-Sept. 11 al-Zawahri book "Knights under the banner of the Prophet": "If USA is attacked on its soil, its European allies will abandon it." If it were just some Eurabian government, it would be no problem - an election and it goes away. But I see that the ideas Zawahri wrote about transcend the minds of ordinary European voters.

Curt from Houston said...

"First of all it's very childish to boast about the weapons you've used or your country has in its disposal. I guess normally young kids do that to make an impression."

I am neither a young kid nor trying to make an impression other than just what I said. If one or two major American cities are destroyed by nuclear weapons, the American response is going to be swift and devastating to the governments in the Middle East perceived to be friendly to the terrorists. Syria and Iran would most certainly be toast. Mecca or Medina might also be targeted just to make a point, but I doubt that. At least in the first round of retaliation.

"Secondly, even if Iran developed nuclear weapons and used them against the USA, what on Earth would Libya have to do with that in order to justify a retaliation?"

Here you are correct. Unless Washington is the first target of a nuclear weapon (likely) and most of the current leadership is instantly vaporized. Then the Middle East would be at the tender mercies of whoever took over. My guess is that it would be someone not very well disposed to the Arab world at that point if you get my drift. At the very least, the world economy would collapse and Libya would be cut off from most trade from outside of the immediate region.

Once again, let me ask you guys in the Middle East this. If Ahmadinejad or Al Qaeda get their hands on nuclear weapons, do you think they would hesitate to use them against the United States? All they would need to do is smuggle one or two across our porous Southern border. Ahmadinejad has stated repeatedly that he wants to bring on the arrival of the Twelfth Imam. As far as I have been able to determine, this will only happen in the times of what we in the West call Armageddon. All I’m doing is taking them at their repeatedly stated words. Just what are we in the West supposed to think?

Curt from Houston said...

"Thirdly, what about Pakistan's nuclear weapons, are you not worried about them?"

Not really. If the shit hits the fan, India will use the opportunity annihilate Pakistan. Simple as that.

Curt from Houston said...

"Do you think the US government has the right to judge other countries while at the same time it reserves itself the right not to be judged by others?"

Yup. Sure do. As is the right of every other sovereign nation in the world. That's what that whole sovereignty thing is all about.

Curt from Houston said...

"Exactly what should have been done? Nukes? Destroy more countries? Give us your list, thank you."

If it were just me and if so many of the rest of my countrymen were not so brain dead from the current PC madness, I would have immediately declared war on Iran, Iraq, and Afghanistan. I would have then reinstated the draft to double the size of the US military, and once I rolled over these three countries, I would have had every Imam preaching this death cult executed along with any of their followers over the age of eighteen. How's that for an "If I were King" scenario?

Curt from Houston said...

For crying out loud people! These idiots have bloviated that the reason why they will uliimately win is because they love DEATH more than we love life. After a statement like that, there is no further reason to attempt any further dialog. What the hell is wrong with some of you folks? Do you just think that they're kidding, because after 9/11, I don't!

Curt from Houston said...

"Westerners can (and should) only provide aid to those seeking to change their cultures, we cannot create the activists themselves."

Ahhh... This is why the Islamist nut salads want us DEAD! Haven't you figured that out yet?

shlemazl said...

Too many "buts".

programmer craig said...

Hmmm... I was dreading coming back here but I don't have as much to cathc up on as I thought.

As we all know the US is above all criticism for its ways of waging a war and that the judicial system is perfect

It's none of your damned business how we wage war or how our judicial system works, NBA. Unless you are prepared to charge us with war crimes or treaty violations. Are you?

Because I openly challenged you to cite the sections of teh Hague or the Geneva Conventions that you though the US was in violation of, and you came back at me with an "it's immoral" argument.

You going to take Bush in front of the International Criminal Court for violating your own personal code of morality, NBA?

Or perhaps because you just plain don't like him very much?

Or maybe you don't like Americans in general much... is that grounds to indict somebody ina criminal proceeding?

It's a stupid implementation of a decent idea. The reason it's a stupid implementation is that it was implemented by people with a political axe to grind. They had an agenda before they even hatched the idea of the ICC - and that agenda was "how do we reign those yankee bastards in!?" - well, we won't be reigned in, NBA.

Sorry.

I'm constantly being told by Europeans that we need to do things their way because the US is supposed to be setting the standards and taking the moral high ground, but we're doing a piss poor job of it.

Isn't that a duplictous claim on it's face? If Euros really thought that the US was setting the example, Euros would be following teh example america sets. But that's not reality. Reality is euros are screaming and yelling and having pissy vits and temper tantrums because the US is not following Europe's example.

No. We aren't. We don't want to be like Europe. But if we did, just whose example would you have us follow, NBA? Specifically? Which country should we endeaver to be like? Which country has a better legal system, a better military, more freedoms, more prosperity, a better human rights record (and not just on paper, damn it!) - which one!?

And before you give your answer, keep in mind that the US is an immigrant society with a lot of inherent social problems, and also... last but not least... this is the most powerful country in the world, which believe it or not complicates issues quite a lot!

So, don't name me Denmark with it's 5 million people. Los Angeles alone has 3 times Denmark's population. And LA probably has a bigger economy as well.

Adam said...

Curt what you replied to NB seems to be a huge contradiction.
NB:
"Do you think the US government has the right to judge other countries while at the same time it reserves itself the right not to be judged by others?"
Curt:
”Yup. Sure do. As is the right of every other sovereign nation in the world. That's what that whole sovereignty thing is all about.”

You literally say that every sovereign nation can judge others nations and every sovereign nation can remain un-judged :00 Pretty unclear what you mean.

And Curt, Iraq. Iraq now is a large lawless land. It has become a tremendous recruiting ground for wannabe jihadis. So in what way is the world a safer place now? I think it is more dangerous. I think that Madrid and London would quite possibly not have happened without Iraq #2, but please answer my question. And do not answer WMD, not even the White House now maintains there ever were any.

And I have a more general question to Craig, but it goes out to Curt, Tommy and friends as well. How can it be that guys in the USA, Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore, Mark Morford (take your time), and also plenty of others can violently criticize US foreign policy? But if the BBC (or our own NBA) in much milder words point out wrongs then they are US bashers?? You so far never explicitly called BBC the enemy, (but just nearly). Why do you measure the Beebs words differently than those of fierce critics from home?? And by the way, every time NB mentions Guantanamo, why do you bring up the Hague conventions?

Non-Blogging said...

Thanks, my fellow Euro-softie Adam ;-).

Craig (& to some extent Curt in Houston),

I'm currently refraining from commenting more on this here. Not because I wouldn't have anything to comment but because due to some non-blogging private life reasons I currently need to refrain from commenting at all for some time to come.

Just wanted to note that while I think BBC is a good channel (unfortunately I have no access to any American channels at home except for their websites), I personally find Chomsky quite repetitive. He might have some good points but he's so boring and anti-American it makes me sleepy. Moore I haven't even seen except for glimpses. So before anyone claims my ideas are derived from them, I can say no and the next thing I want to say is that I'm not a leftist socialist either.

OK, that might only make you wonder how bad European leftist socialists are if I'm not one of them he he he ;-).

OK, this was the last note from me in the public blogosphere for some days or weeks (God knows how long) but if somebody wants to keep on exchanging ideas, my e-mail is pubic anyway.

Non-Blogging said...

He he he, what a Freudian slip. My e-mail is of course public, not pubic ;-).

Adam said...

Non-Blogging, the mother of all non-bloggers!

Pubic or not, you just gotta love this guy!

programmer craig said...

Hmmm... well, I'm going to violate my own rules and reply to you, Adam, but if you turn it into the Spanish Inquisition(Swedish Inquisition?) all bet are off. You don't have any God given right to insult me (or my country) and demand I respond to your insults.

How can it be that guys in the USA, Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore, Mark Morford (take your time), and also plenty of others can violently criticize US foreign policy?

Anybody, anywhere, can insult America. There's no law against it. Do you somehow feel that I have a better opinion about self-loathing Americans than I do about foreigners who hate my country and all it stands for? It's actually quite the opposite.

But if the BBC (or our own NBA) in much milder words point out wrongs then they are US bashers??

Hey, I never said NBA was an America basher! I like NBA. You, Adam, are an America basher. NBA plays along with you far too muhc and that's where I start having difficulties with him.

Now, when we get into the mass media, it's a different deal. It's the job of the US media to be critical of the US government. The media plays a vital role in keeping the government accountable. I don't like it that the media seems to be so far to the left in the way they do it (it's always been that way, I think journalism attracts people from the far left edge of the political spectrum, by it's very nature) but we're a lot better off with even a leftist hostile media than a media that's just a mouthpiece for the government.

Foreign media has no such role to play. If they say hateful or hostile things about America, it's because they damn well mean it, not because they are trying to play a role in the balance of powers. When the BBC slams and smears the US every single day on the front poages, tehy do so because they want to do America harm, not because they feel it's their duty.

Let me ask you, Adam... when was the last tiem you ever saw American media doing a hatchet job on the Brits? Or, really, on any other country that isn't an overt enemy of America? I can't even recall the last tiem I saw a negative story about any european country except France. But damn, we sure do love to hate the French these days.

Do Europeans hate America as uch as Americans hate France, Adam? It's been seeming that way for a while. We're going to start hating you back, you know. It's human nature.

And by the way, every time NB mentions Guantanamo, why do you bring up the Hague conventions?

Because the Hague Conventions (also known as the "Laws of War") govern the status of combatants/non-combatants/hostiles, legal versus illegal methods of waging war, the capture of prisoners, the status of prisoners, the status of armed forces, civilian militias, medical personnel, journalists, etc.

When somebody is charged with war crimes or crimes against hmanity, for instance, they are being charged with violating the Hague Conventions. Not the Geneva Conventions.

The Geneva Conventions apply specifically to the treatment of non-combatants, during a war. The Hague Conventions apply to the treatment of combatants.

Prisoners of War are non-combatants who were formerly combatants. So both conventions apply when discussing prisoners of war.

I'm currently refraining from commenting more on this here. Not because I wouldn't have anything to comment but because due to some non-blogging private life reasons I currently need to refrain from commenting at all for some time to come.

Sorry to har that, NBA. No need to reply to this or anything else I write. No need at all, man. I get way too stressed out by stuff I read on blogs sometimes, and the simple fact is there are much more important things in life than deciding who wins an argument :)

Sorry things got hot, and I hope I didn't add much to your stress level.

Adam said...

Other later but now on the Laws of War Craig:

Wikipedia on ”Laws of war” (Excerpt):
Conduct of warfare
Among other issues, the laws of war address declaration of war, acceptance of surrender and the treatment of prisoners of war; the avoidance of atrocities; the prohibition on deliberately attacking civilians; and the prohibition of certain inhumane weapons.

Wikipedia on “Declaration of war” (Excerpt):
Declaration of war
A declaration of war is a formal declaration issued by a national government indicating that a state of war exists between that nation, and one or more others.

So war according to the Hague Conventions, “war” is by definition between nations. Sure you may declare war on stupidity, war on obesity, war on illiteracy, war on mass poverty or war on terrorism. You may fight those wars. But the Hague conventions do not apply.

So what remains is morals. And morals are subjective. And subjective matters should be open to discussion. The US may say: “We do what we bloody please…”, but what boils the blood is when you continue: “…and you Europeans just shut up”.

NB expressed a fine point a month ago it went something like: “We may agree on the goals, but disagree on the means”.

Adam said...

Craig! I should get offline, to get some sleep, (it seems you are familiar with that feeling), but my wheels are spinning.

Let me ask you, Adam... when was the last tiem you ever saw American media doing a hatchet job on the Brits?
September 12 in the New York Times, my favorite US daily :)
Personally, I do not consider this UK-bashing. But you consider anything negative in Euromedia as US-bashing. You mentioned the BBC on obesity. So if "US Obesity" is US bashing then, by the same measure, so is "UK Cowardice":
LONDON, Sept. 12 - One of the received wisdoms about British life is that it is full of picayune rules that are meant to prevent injuries and accidents but are in fact patently ridiculous. Antigovernment newspapers delight in promoting the notion of a country ruled by what they call "political correctness gone mad," describing how, for example, a fire department in Devon removed its traditional firemen's pole last year, apparently on the grounds that it is safer to use the stairs.

Do Europeans hate America as uch as Americans hate France, Adam?
I do not know, I do not hate America. Ask someone who does. I am highly critical of American foreign policy yes. So is Michael Moore. & Why not read what Moby, the musician says on his blog. ( sep 10 ):
dear president bush,
stay out of new york.
you don't like us and we don't like you.
90% of us voted for john kerry in the last election. we don't trust you, and we believe, based on your record, that you've been a terrible president.


They, like me, are able to be highly critical without hating the nation.

programmer craig said...

Adam,

I am highly critical of American foreign policy yes.

I'd go a lot further than "highly critical" Adam, since you've basically accused the US of wholesale slaughter of the innocent, fascism, war crimes, crimes against humanity, unlawful imprisonment, massive human rights violations and such other silliness like that.

Highly critical. Ok, fine. I guess I'm merely "highly critical" of Hezbollah and Al Qaeda too, using your standards :P

Seriously, you talk about the US the way I talk about my enemies, Adam. Just something to think about. If you say you don't hate America I guess I have to accept that. I'm pretty sure what I said was that you bash America anyway, which you do. And just because Michael Moore bashes America, too, doesn't mean Americans have to think it's ok when you do it. We don't. At least, I don't. It might be marginally justifiable if your criticisms were valid, but most of them seem to be fiction. And no, I don't want to re-hash the issue. When I first ran into you on this blog I spent a great deal of time pointing out that the claims you were making were factually in error. You responed with more inaccurate accusations. So, lets leave all that be, please?

At least you haven't been trying to pretend it's only the Bush Administration you have a grievance with, since I busted you ranting about things that happened back in the 60s, 70, 80s and 90s, under multiple administrations of both political parties. Thanks for at least being that fair-minded.

Anyway, I attempted to load that article, but I'm not a subscriber so I couldn't. Based on the blurb, it appears to be a reprint of an article that was published in London , no? And the article was complaining government safety regulations that the author thought was silly?

Lets say for the sake of argument that the article originated from an American journalist and not a British one, even though I don't think that's the case. You think that's hate-mongering, Adam?

You're going to have to do better :)

Or we could just drop it. I don't really have an interest in proving who hates my country and who doesn't, and so on and so forth. It's important for you guys in EUrope to know how much ground you're losing in american public opinion, though. If you care. We see and hear what you say and write. We're not stupid. Believe it or not. Hatemongering works both ways, as always.

programmer craig said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Curt from Houston said...

"I am highly critical of American foreign policy yes. So is Michael Moore."

Michael Moore is a fat Marxist charlatan who has made a fortune with his anti American bile spewage. Europeans along with the far unhinged left in America are his primary audiences. Virtually every charge in his vapid videos have been debunked by folks on the Internet, but that doesn't stop the left from both idolizing him and at the same time distancing themselves from him come election time. He mostly reminds me of the character Worm Tongue from Lord of the Rings.

shlemazl said...

I have real trouble figuring out why Europeans are so anti-American.

Without the Yanks they would have been learning Russian right now and Russian is a difficult language to learn. They should be grateful.

Having said this it is even more amazing how Americans can be anti-American (Moor/Chomsky and the like).

Perhaps some people just can't forgive the US for winning the Cold War.

Maya M said...

I guess Arabic and Farsi are also difficult languages :).

Adam said...

Ok Craig:
If you say you don't hate America I guess I have to accept that.
Thank you. Because I really do not, and that was the point I was trying to make. I do think there is a huge difference between bashing governments, and a whole nation.

As for Michael Moore, I do not particularly like him. Sometimes he has sort-of-a point but he is a clown. And when he writes about US poverty from his fab Central Park view he is a greedy hypocrite. I mentioned him as an extreme example of a non-US-hater. I suppose I should have found a better example. I think such exist…

Seriously, you talk about the US the way I talk about my enemies, Adam
No, I do not think so. Yes, I have used such words about another country’s actions and leaders. Also, I have spoken of historic atrocities of many European nations. Has maybe your memory superimposed LW’s words and mine?

Also, you must have noticed that my commenting style is quite different now. Discussing with you makes me think real hard, before I make the sort of explosions I did initially. And I did apologize for my latest re-lapse. Look, you changed me. Well... just slightly: )

Adam said...

Maya M said...
I guess Arabic and Farsi are also difficult languages :).

Hilarious. Bulgarian humor is conquering the world.

programmer craig said...

Bulgarian humor is conquering the world.

:D

Sorry, Maya, but that was pretty good :)

Curt from Houston said...

"You literally say that every sovereign nation can judge others nations and every sovereign nation can remain un-judged :00 Pretty unclear what you mean."

No contradiction here Adam. Every nation can and does judge every other nation. Your country for instance can judge the US to your hart's content. This does not mean that Americans have to give a flying flip about what that judgement is.

Curt from Houston said...

"I have come to the conclusion that any individual that OBL and his band of Ass Monkies are a ploy by the US and the Enemies of Islam to pervert Islam, and scare as many peopleaway from the Faith of Truth as they possibly can.

LW, you really need to pry that tinfoil hat of one of these days and make an attempt to reconnect with reality. Man! It must suck to be you. How do you manage to crawl out of bed in the morning with your head crammed full of this kind of paranoid pretzel logic?

Curt from Houston said...

”They are unhappy because they think the US response has been too little. And in the case of Iraq, misguided. (I disagree with you about Iraq)

Craig, I agree. Most of the people here in Houston mostly keep to themselves on the Iraq war issue, but if you press them you usually get something like “Those people will never change. We should just get out and let them slaughter each other.” Or “Why don’t we just bomb them back to the Stone Age and have done with it.”

As for the question of what I personally think about the Iraq situation, I was actually surprised by the almost total lack of cohesion that this society has displayed. It goes way beyond any thing we have ever seen in any of our European or Asian adversaries in the past. At no point did I think that a modern, Western style Democracy would instantly spring up. However, the sheer, murderous brutality of these people towards each other is simply breath taking.

I still think that one of the main reasons that we went into Iraq in the first place was that it has come down to two basic scenarios in the Middle East. Either we drag these people into the twenty first century (kicking and screaming) or there will be nuclear war. And no Highlander, I don’t mean you or people like you. But admit it. You are scared to death of these sixth century barbarians. Folks like Sand Monkey and yourself stay anonymous for a very good reason. These savages would hack your heads of with rusty kitchen knives for your apostate views, all the while screaming Allah Akbar at the top of their lungs.

Let me end with this Highlander:

Do you think that it’s OK for your husband to beat you for being “disobedient”?

Do you think that the man should have the last word in family decisions?
Actually, I floated that balloon past my wife one time and she threw an ashtray at me.

Do you think that women should be prohibited from driving?

Do you think that women should have to be escorted every where they go by a male relative?

Do you think that women should be forced to wear a tent when they go out in public?

Do you think that it's a good idea to mutilate a woman's genitals to keep her chaste? I've heard that a high percentage of girls in Egypt have undergone this quaint little proceedure. Shudder

Do you think that a woman should be buried to her waist and stoned to death for cheating on her husband?

Do you think that women should be denied an education or married off to a much older man she has never met?

If you do, then welcome to Afghanistan or any number of other countries practicing Islam around the world.


And in advance, I know, It's not in the Koran. So why do you guys put up with it. You can see why we in the West are not overly eager to experience the peace that is Islam.

Curt from Houston said...

"And Curt, Iraq. Iraq now is a large lawless land. It has become a tremendous recruiting ground for wannabe jihadis."

Sounds like the same could be said for just about every Muslim country in the world. They already want to slit our childrens throats. We cetainely wouldn't want to piss them off any further, right?

Curt from Houston said...

"I always wonder when I hear the epithete "world policeman" being used as an insult. Don't people imagine what would it be to live in a district without police?"

I love this line. If the US is hit hard again, there's a good chance that we will go back to the "Fortress America" mentality that we had prior World War One and Two. Then the Neo-Stalinists in Russia can be your new world policemen. I'm sure you'll like their enlightened view of world politics much better. So long and thanks for all the fish.

Maya M said...

Highlander, I agree with Curt's questions. In fact, I had similar thoughts even before he wrote that comment. After carefully reading your post and remembering your older posts, I realized that I'm happier than you. I fear that my side will lose and because I'm a born pessimist, sometimes I estimate this probability to be 90%. (Of course this doesn't make me doubt my cause, I'm not of those folks who vote for the party supposed to win and so feel winners for a day.) But you find yourself stuck in a lose-lose situation. You fear that any attempt to Westernize the Arab world would destroy its culture. But you don't like our enemies, either. So you will be unhappy, no matter which side wins.
I don't know why you are so much transcended by Islam. It has so little cohesion with your views. I repeat my guess: Islam was introduced to you when you were very young (most likely you don't remember when - that means before 3).

Curt from Houston said...

Heres a comment that someone posted on Iraq the Model. Death cult indeed:

Ahmadinejad's World
http://mail.google.com/mail/? vie...0db2d87e07c9326
http://tinyurl.com/kvh3w

excerpts:

[The semi-official Iranian daily Ettela'at assured its readers,] "Before entering the mine fields, the children wrap themselves in blankets and they roll on the ground, so that their body parts stay together after the explosion of the mines and one can carry them to the graves." The children who thus rolled to their deaths formed part of the mass "Basij" movement that was called into being by the Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979.]

[Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, Chair of the Guardian Council,
goes so far as to describe the very existence of Iran’s
nuclear program as a triumph of those Iranians who
"serve the Basiji movement and possess the Basijipsyche
and Basiji-culture."

...in one of his first television interviews, the new President
enthused: "Is there an art that is more beautiful, more divine,
more eternal than the art of the martyr's death?"

The Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, held up the war
against Iraq, on account of the fearlessness of the Basiji,
as a model for future conflicts.]

Curt from Houston said...

"Before entering the mine fields, the children wrap themselves in blankets and they roll on the ground, so that their body parts stay together after the explosion of the mines and one can carry them to the graves."

I'd like to tie up this raving asshole in a blanket and stuff him face first into a land mine. Those were children you fucking monster! Children! I just hope that you have an immortal soul and that there is a hell foul enough to receive it. It's bad enough when children are killed in the general chaos of war. You are so far beneath contempt that you would need a telescope to see it.

Curt from Houston said...

Highlander, I apologize for my language in the previous post. I almost never use this kinds of language on line. But when I read that post on Iraq the Model, it reminded me of the stories about how the Iranians would send children out to clear mine fields with plastic keys to heaven placed around their necks made in China. Basically, I simply did not want to believe that it was true at the time. Now I know that it is. The death cult that these monsters worship does not even spare the children. In fact, it preys upon them.

Curt from Houston said...

The human wave tactic was implemented as follows: the barely armed children and teenagers had to move continuously forward in perfectly straight rows. It did not matter whether they fell as canon fodder to enemy fire or detonated the mines with their bodies: the important thing was that the Basiji continued to move forward over the torn and mutilated remains of their fallen comrades, going to their deaths in wave after wave.[8] The tactic produced some undeniable initial successes for the Iranian side. “They come toward our positions in huge hordes with their fists swinging,” an Iraqi officer complained in Summer 1982, “You can shoot down the first wave, and then the second. But at some point the corpses are piling up in front of you, and all you want to do is scream and throw away your weapon. Those are human beings, after all!”[9] By Spring 1983, the Pasdaran had sent some 450,000 Basiji in shifts to the front. After three months, whoever survived his deployment was sent back to his school or workplace.

Highlander said...

I understand your frustration Curt and your gracious apology is accepted even though you were simply venting your anger. As much as you are horrified by the Basiji you have to remmember that these are Iranians -Shia, and so cannot project their mentality on Muslims or Arabs. I'll probably write more another day but today I'm too tired.

programmer craig said...

Highlander,

Basiji you have to remmember that these are Iranians -Shia, and so cannot project their mentality on Muslims or Arabs.

Freudian slip there, the shia not being muslim part? :)

Or did you mean to say it that way?

The Basij are formed under the Revolutionary Guard Corps, in exactly the same way Hezbollah is.

So, when you say Iranian's cannot project their mentality on arabs, I think you were proven wrong in that over 20 years ago. Pretty decisively. Hezbollah is an arab terror group, not an Iranian one.

If you want to disqualify Hezbollah as muslims, that's fine with me :)

programmer craig said...

Oh! The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps has been working with both the major shia militias in Iraq as well. So, soon Iraq will have it's own Iranian sponsored terrorist groups/militias - if it doesn't already.

My best guess is that if they aren't stopped by an outside power (like the US) that the shia will be completely dominant in the greater middle east in the coming years.

The Shia already have Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, the Gulf States, they have Syria under their thumb even though it's not (yet) shia... Iran is also the p[rimary sponsor of HAMAS and Ilsamic Jihad in the occupied territories, at this point in time.

Who (in the ME) is going to stop them? Egypt? Egypt has a large population and a respectable military but it is no match for the kind of regional shia alliance that is currently forming.

I guess I'm saying that I believe there's a pretty good chance arabs are going to be shia in the coming years. Or at least, under shia rule.

Curt from Houston said...

"Who (in the ME) is going to stop them? Egypt? Egypt has a large population and a respectable military but it is no match for the kind of regional shia alliance that is currently forming."
This is exactly why I'm afraid that we will one day be forced to nuke the entire region or face annihilation ourselves. Once these death worshipers get nuclear weapons, they won’t hesitate to use them. We cannot afford to invade and occupy every country in the Middle East and sit on them until they join us in the twenty first century. So our options are fairly limited.

If some to these knuckle draggers get their hands on nukes and use them on us They are toast! The really sad thing is that they can never hope to even find any of our ballistic missile submarines let alone destroy them. That means that any nuclear attack on us is truly a suicide maneuver. It gets really scary if, as I said in a previous post, they succeed in killing most of our current leadership. There is a very good probability that after something like that, an extremist and hard core militant leadership would take power in the US and wipe out the entire Middle East. “Kill them all and let God sort them out.”

Curt from Houston said...

"Al-Qaida warns Muslims:
Time to get out of U.S.
Afghan terror commander hints
at big attack on N.Y., Washington
--WND"


www.wnd.com

Highlander said...

Programmer Craig :)

No it was not a Freudian slip but a misconstructed sentence:

"As much as you are horrified by the Basiji you have to remmember that these are Iranians -Shia, and so cannot project their mentality on Muslims or Arabs. "

I meant here that Curt or other Westerners cannot project the mentality of the Basiji on the rest of the Muslims or on the Arabs.
But thanks for pointing that out - I should be less hasty in replying next time :)

Enlightenment said...

One thing that struck me as odd in the days after 9/11 was Bush saying "We will not tolerate conspiracy theories [regarding 9/11]". Sure enough there have been some wacky conspiracy theories surrounding the events of that day. The most far-fetched and patently ridiculous one that I've ever heard goes like this: Nineteen hijackers who claimed to be devout Muslims but yet were so un-Muslim as to be getting drunk all the time, doing cocaine and frequenting strip clubs decided to hijack four airliners and fly them into buildings in the northeastern U.S., the area of the country that is the most thick with fighter bases. After leaving a Koran on a barstool at a strip bar after getting shitfaced drunk on the night before, then writing a suicide note/inspirational letter that sounded like it was written by someone with next to no knowledge of Islam, they went to bed and got up the next morning hung over and carried out their devious plan. Nevermind the fact that of the four "pilots" among them there was not a one that could handle a Cessna or a Piper Cub let alone fly a jumbo jet, and the one assigned the most difficult task of all, Hani Hanjour, was so laughably incompetent that he was the worst fake "pilot" of the bunch. Nevermind the fact that they received very rudimentary flight training at Pensacola Naval Air Station, making them more likely to have been C.I.A. assets than Islamic fundamentalist terrorists. So on to the airports. These "hijackers" somehow managed to board all four airliners with their tickets, yet not even ONE got his name on any of the flight manifests. So they hijack all four airliners and at this time passengers on United 93 start making a bunch of cell phone calls from 35,000 feet in the air to tell people what was going on. Nevermind the fact that cell phones wouldn't work very well above 4,000 feet, and wouldn't work at ALL above 8,000 feet. But the conspiracy theorists won't let that fact get in the way of a good fantasy. That is one of the little things you "aren't supposed to think about". Nevermind that one of the callers called his mom and said his first and last name, more like he was reading from a list than calling his own mom. Anyway, when these airliners each deviated from their flight plan and didn't respond to ground control, NORAD would any other time have followed standard operating procedure (and did NOT have to be told by F.A.A. that there were hijackings because they were watching the same events unfold on their own radar) which means fighter jets would be scrambled from the nearest base where they were available on standby within a few minutes, just like every other time when airliners stray off course. But of course on 9/11 this didn't happen, not even close. Somehow these "hijackers" must have used magical powers to cause NORAD to stand down, as ridiculous as this sounds because total inaction from the most high-tech and professional Air Force in the world would be necessary to carry out their tasks. So on the most important day in its history the Air Force was totally worthless. Then they had to make one of the airliners look like a smaller plane, because unknown to them the Naudet brothers had a videocamera to capture the only known footage of the North Tower crash, and this footage shows something that is not at all like a jumbo jet, but didn't have to bother with the South Tower jet disguising itself because that was the one we were "supposed to see". Anyway, as for the Pentagon they had to have Hani Hanjour fly his airliner like it was a fighter plane, making a high G-force corkscrew turn that no real airliner can do, in making its descent to strike the Pentagon. But these "hijackers" wanted to make sure Rumsfeld survived so they went out of their way to hit the farthest point in the building from where Rumsfeld and the top brass are located. And this worked out rather well for the military personnel in the Pentagon, since the side that was hit was the part that was under renovation at the time with few military personnel present compared to construction workers. Still more fortuitous for the Pentagon, the side that was hit had just before 9/11 been structurally reinforced to prevent a large fire there from spreading elsewhere in the building. Awful nice of them to pick that part to hit, huh? Then the airliner vaporized itself into nothing but tiny unidentifiable pieces no bigger than a fist, unlike the crash of a real airliner when you will be able to see at least some identifiable parts, like crumpled wings, broken tail section etc. Why, Hani Hanjour the terrible pilot flew that airliner so good that even though he hit the Pentagon on the ground floor the engines didn't even drag the ground!! Imagine that!! Though the airliner vaporized itself on impact it only made a tiny 16 foot hole in the building. Amazing. Meanwhile, though the planes hitting the Twin Towers caused fires small enough for the firefighters to be heard on their radios saying "We just need 2 hoses and we can knock this fire down" attesting to the small size of it, somehow they must have used magical powers from beyond the grave to make this morph into a raging inferno capable of making the steel on all forty-seven main support columns (not to mention the over 100 smaller support columns) soften and buckle, then all fail at once. Hmmm. Then still more magic was used to make the building totally defy physics as well as common sense in having the uppermost floors pass through the remainder of the building as quickly, meaning as effortlessly, as falling through air, a feat that without magic could only be done with explosives. Then exactly 30 minutes later the North Tower collapses in precisely the same freefall physics-defying manner. Incredible. Not to mention the fact that both collapsed at a uniform rate too, not slowing down, which also defies physics because as the uppermost floors crash into and through each successive floor beneath them they would shed more and more energy each time, thus slowing itself down. Common sense tells you this is not possible without either the hijackers' magical powers or explosives. To emphasize their telekinetic prowess, later in the day they made a third building, WTC # 7, collapse also at freefall rate though no plane or any major debris hit it. Amazing guys these magical hijackers. But we know it had to be "Muslim hijackers" the conspiracy theorist will tell you because (now don't laugh) one of their passports was "found" a couple days later near Ground Zero, miraculously "surviving" the fire that we were told incinerated planes, passengers and black boxes, and also "survived" the collapse of the building it was in. When common sense tells you if that were true then they should start making buildings and airliners out of heavy paper and plastic so as to be "indestructable" like that magic passport. The hijackers even used their magical powers to bring at least seven of their number back to life, to appear at american embassies outraged at being blamed for 9/11!! BBC reported on that and it is still online. Nevertheless, they also used magical powers to make the american government look like it was covering something up in the aftermath of this, what with the hasty removal of the steel debris and having it driven to ports in trucks with GPS locators on them, to be shipped overseas to China and India to be melted down. When common sense again tells you that this is paradoxical in that if the steel was so unimportant that they didn't bother saving some for analysis but so important as to require GPS locators on the trucks with one driver losing his job because he stopped to get lunch. Hmmmm. Further making themselves look guilty, the Bush administration steadfastly refused for over a year to allow a commission to investigate 9/11 to even be formed, only agreeing to it on the conditions that they get to dictate its scope, meaning it was based on the false pretense of the "official story" being true with no other alternatives allowed to be considered, handpicked all its members making sure the ones picked had vested interests in the truth remaining buried, and with Bush and Cheney only "testifying" together, only for an hour, behind closed doors, with their attorneys present and with their "testimonies" not being recorded by tape or even written down in notes. Yes, this whole story smacks of the utmost idiocy and fantastic far-fetched lying, but it is amazingly enough what some people believe. Even now, five years later, the provably false fairy tale of the "nineteen hijackers" is heard repeated again and again, and is accepted without question by so many Americans. Which is itself a testament to the innate psychological cowardice of the American sheeple, i mean people, and their abject willingness to believe something, ANYTHING, no matter how ridiculous in order to avoid facing a scary uncomfortable truth. Time to wake up America.