Member Profile

Total number of comments: 132 (since 2013-11-28 14:42:45)


Showing comments 132 - 101

  • Roof, Dear and Tashfeen Malik: 'Self-Radicalized,' 'Terrorism,' 'Lone Wolf' and Double Standards
    • "Is there a double standard in our public discourse here?" ....I almost doubled over with laughter ! Where is there not a double standard in US discourse and actions?
      To borrow a saying from my mother the US "couldn't lie straight in bed" .

  • The National Security State gets Real: 9 Ways the US is becoming Bizarro World
    • The list is grimly hilarious ..and yes, extremely predictable to just about anyone/everyone outside of the US.
      The one consoling factor over years of US terror being that the USA will invariably 'reap what it sows' and /or Karma will come a knocking.
      So then noone outside the US I think is terribly surprised to see that your cops look and act like your army abroad, and very few outside the US will be surprised - or maybe overly sorry - when your army cum police start shooting up wedding parties on your own turf.- exceptional indeed.

  • We're all Iraqis now: How Bush's Wars Militarized Baltimore & Ferguson Police
    • The only surprising thing about the police violence in the US is how surprised people seem to be about it ...have they never heard that you reap what you sow. Welcome to Iraq, USA .

  • What would Happen if the Int'l Criminal Court Indicted Israel's Netanyahu?
    • "Without US participation, the ICC is a clown car dispensing victors justice." ( Steven Smith)
      You mean like the UN? ...oh no- that's like a clown car dispensing victors justice because the US is a member .
      About time to restructure the Security Council and do away with the US veto.

  • Israeli Gov't mocks 'Peace Talks' with announcement of 1200 New Squatter homes in Occupied Palestine
    • I'm always interested to see the comments in response to Israeli/Palestinian articles printed here.
      There appears to be far fewer responses than to many other similar stories.
      Is this really the case? and if it is what is driving this- lack of interest, self censorship, fear(of being labeled anti Semite)?

  • Israel's District 9: Its Biggest Ethnic Cleansing since 1948
    • the same reason this article here has only attracted 9 responses....theres no interest and ....well, its Israel.

  • US Drone Operator says, 'I became a sociopath', regrets 1626 Killings (Lest we forget)
    • Did he really say he 'regrets 1626 killings' ?? I thought he said they were bad guys and they deserved to die ...sounded a bit sad for himself but 'regret' I'm not so sure. Maybe a bit more so if he were put in front of a court.

  • We Misunderstood Barack: He only wanted the Domestic Surveillance to be Made Legal, not to End It
    • I have to agree .

      I've had to assume that the adoration ( and excuses) for Obama have come about because he appears so good compared to his predecessor ....but that was an extraordinarily low base line.

      Is there any way to annul the Nobel Peace Prize ??

  • Who's the Threat? Western Powers have invaded and Killed Millions of Muslims
    • You can talk about conflict driven by religious difference all you like but most of us -most of the time wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a Christian a Jew and a Muslim unless they offered the info themselves.

      In the Balkans there were maybe two big differences as I remember it :
      1) they were white Muslims
      2) they were on our TV's
      ....I remember quite vividly the scenes of those starved half naked men behind wire ( and didn't it remind us of other images -another time we said would never happen again?)

  • Why Obama doesn't want to intervene in Syria
    • You say that like it is not the norm for the US as well, the only real difference being that the US tend to project that force outwardly , and as you say the 'shows of force' ( that would actually be a rampaging global assault) has become very much 'enervating and exhausting'.
      I would long for the day the US stops feeling the need to save us from the boogey men they have had a leading hand in creating but they'd just be replaced by the emerging 'strongman' from behind the bamboo curtain .....nothing new under the sun :(

  • Top Ten Ways Islamic Law forbids Terrorism
    • Not entirely. Its not just coincidence that there's been a bombing in the US and we have a story about “Top Ten Ways Islamic Law forbids Terrorism”. It still reinforces the link between acts of violence and Islam.

      What we don't see are articles after every bombing by Christians ( including secular Christians ) trying to convince us that real Christians aren't violent and that such violence would be against Christian belief.

      Fortunately there is media in other countries which is more mature and responsible.

  • Israel at 65: Welcome to the Neighborhood (Map)
    • And that would be why there's no serious discussion [let alone action] re Palestinians and Israel .

  • Iraq 10 Years Later: The Bitter Days Continue because Policy didn't put People First (Al-Sheemary)
    • Thankyou for this essay.
      The USA has not learned anything - and will do it again as long as the country remains unpunished.

  • Mission Accomplished: Iraq as America's biggest Blunder (Van Buren)
    • That is absolutely F*'n hilarious...really . Except of course for the part where even this guy who actually understands what a total arse-up the whole Iraq Invasion was still misses the key point - the 'punch line' isn't
      "by invading Iraq, the U.S. did more to destabilize the Middle East than we could possibly have imagined at the time. And we — and so many others — will pay the price for it for a long, long time."
      The real punchline is that the US used superior power to commit war crimes and go unpunished . That didn't just send a message to the Middle East - it sent a clear message to the whole world - and that is what we will all be paying the price for a very, very long time.

  • "Argo" as Orientalism and why it Upsets Iranians
    • And right here is a good enough example of how the (US) media works in shaping your world view and distracting from the bigger/real issues.

      63 comments discussing the relative merits of a Hollywood film compared to 2 in response to a previous article about the death of a Palestinian in Israeli custody.

      If your biggest concern is whether or not you are getting your political & foreign policy history portrayed accurately in movies all I can say is you have much bigger problems.

  • Climate Change is turning Australia Purple with Blazing Heat
    • And looking at that map you think thats where all the major CO2 emitters are based??? There is no 'justice' in the already struggling populations of Central Australian communities sweltering while the likes of Gina Rinehart and her BIG business buddies lap it up in their air conditioned coastal mansions. ( or more likely overseas ski resorts).
      As usual it is those with the least power who suffer for the actions of others.

  • Senate Wraps up Investigation of CIA Rights Abuses but You'll Likely Never See it (Currier)
    • Your 'dirty laundry' is not hidden - we ( the rest of the world) are very well aware of the crimes committed by the US - unfortunately there still are people experiencing those criminal acts.
      Taking responsibility for those actions and punishing those responsible would not demonstrate a 'US capacity for exceptionalism' - but perhaps a well overdue rejection of that very flawed premise.

  • Dear Democrats: If you do That you have to do This
    • “it is and will remain the capital of Israel. The parties have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations. It should remain an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths.” ....Israel has proven to be word masters and the fact that this ONLY says the Jerusalem is an Israeli capital will not escape them in the slightest. The only thing that it leaves open to negotiation is how often and how many Palestinians will be allowed entry into the Israeli capital of Jerusalem .

  • Is Obama more Klingon or more Vulcan? & Michael Dorn Pitches "Captain Worf"
  • Top Ten differences between White Terrorists and Others
    • "4 The family of a white terrorist is interviewed, weeping as they wonder where he went wrong. The families of other terrorists are almost never interviewed."

      The family of other terrorists are terrified of becoming 'co accused' or being arrested for 'material support for terrorism' - they don't want to be interviewed - they want to hide and hope they don't get caught up in it too.

      11. White terrorists are not summarily executed via drone strike . White terrorists plead guilty and get life in prison .

  • If a Jammed Assault Rifle saved Lives, wouldn't no Assault Rifle?
    • Apparently in the US people kill people while in Iraq , Afghanistan Pakistan etc etc it is weapons that kill people ( Damn those smart bombs!) ...either way the solution is simple just don't let people and guns( weapons) mix - the result is nasty.

  • Morsi Reaffirms Israel Peace Treaty to Clinton
  • Drone Questions for Americans (Jamiol Cartoon)
    • Only if you assume that those are US missiles or that the US is the only one who would use them .
      US actions overseas have left the door open to any other country to go after US terrorists (Mr Bush right down to any of his civilian employee torturers ) with a drone strike.

  • How Obama changed definition of ‘civilian’ in secret drone wars (Woods)
    • The term 'military aged males' is not new Iraq the US frequently referred to 'Military aged males ' without being questioned .
      It would probably be more to the point if someone asked how old is 'military aged' ( I'd bet its younger than 18 ) and would you apply those same rules 'at home' since the effect is painting a big target on their backs ??

  • US Public Wants out of Afghanistan as 3 Western Troops Killed by Afghan Troops
    • I don't think they've learned anything.
      The public ..'our public' are turning against these wars because 'our troops' are being killed. If it was only a case of the 'others' being killed - regardless of numbers ( and in some cases the more the merrier) 'our public' would still be happy as pigs.
      Whats amazing ( to me at least) is how many people are surprised when Afghans kill US/NATO troops ..."How ungrateful" they cry, because of course if we had foreign troops conducting counterinsurgency ops on our soil we'd be behind them 100%.

  • Why don't we have better Reporting on the Afghanistan Army? It is our Best Hope for Getting Out
    • Does the Afghan army need to be able to take over from the US/NATO....are their interests the same really? Is it so surprising that the ANA doesn't show quite the same level of enthusiasm for killing its own countrymen and US troops do?
      And of course the Karzai government may well be intent on digging in and getting some powerful hardware - as would any puppet when the foreign power behind them pulls out ...I can't recall any sympathizers/collaborators who have been embraced with love by their peers once the occupier/protectors have gone home.

  • Israel to Demolish Solar Energy panels for Palestinians
    • And if you really believe that is the same situation as depicted in the article then I'm probably wasting my time trying to explain otherwise. That said, lets give it one more try.
      The US and Israel are both sovereign nations, they have laws and regulations about what is permissible which may include regulation over the installation of solar panels . If a citizen if either of those sovereign nations where to ( in this case) install solar panels without a permit then the authorities would be within their power to remove them.
      Area C in the West Bank however is NOT in Israel - it is NOT part of Israels sovereign territory ...and that is where your parallel falls down.

  • Israel's Atom Bomb Factory in 3D
    • And maybe that Nel comes close to the real explanation of why Israel has 400 nukes and also explains why such a little place has such a disproportionate amount of clout?
      Its not as though we haven't all been told ,'never again' - a mad man with 400 nukes might make a few governments decide there are worse options.

  • Afghans to US Military: Be at Least a Little Ashamed
  • Khamenei Takes Control, Forbids Nuclear Bomb
    • Its very hard to believe that the US really views any other country as a military threat and yet here we seem to be ,again, moving inexorably towards ANOTHER war. Why?
      Could it be that the real threat , the real reason for demonizing, perusing and fighting that 'other' is just a diversion - to unite and draw attention away from the real threat ..the one within your own borders and not so easily 'fixed' with precision guided weapons??

  • Afro-Asia, Global South Reject Boycott of Iran
    • I see that we in the North West are not participating in the boycott ( YAY!!) just the sheep though the midlands and Lara Giddings in the south surprises there - the sheep have always been opposed to trade with the middle east.

  • Ring of Iranian Bases Threatens US
    • Manufacturing the right job for the wrong tool? think there would be folk who would do something so duplicitous - that would end in "throwing good money, and good men and women and children, after bad."???

    • Page: 1
    • Bill I don't know what kind of word game you're playing with your nit picking responses but its very boring.

      The US has very large numbers of bases and troops (Assets) stationed in countries around Iran. I recon that if we were to do a quick survey of the troops there we would find two things:
      1) they are well aware who the current bogey man is (IRAN)
      2) which direction to fire their weapons when/if the order comes (IRAN)

      If the positions were reversed the US would be fairly pissy and would be (rightly) wondering what Iran was up to.
      Iran has even more justification for being a bit concerned ..there's been a lot of very threatening rhetoric and the US has an earned reputation for throwing its might around...

      But of course this could all be wrong and it might just be the case that the US - having such a MASSIVE military has absolutely nowhere to put them and its just an innocent coincidence that large numbers of assets have ended up in the Middle East in the neighborhood of Iran. And I might be Mother Theresa.

  • The Generals try to stop an Iran War
    • Actually that should be : "oh boy another war. more dead women and children at the hands of young men who have the courage to fight a war but not to ask if they should - whose parents will rally round their Leader to demand vengeance and kill the “Other.”

    • OMG!! that is the scariest thing I've read ...and scarier still is that it doesn't sound like something so inconceivable given those in power.

    • 'The underlying intent is to ratchet up the pressure on Iran to cave in'...what would that look like? I mean they keep saying that their nuclear program is non military , they have inspectors ...what would they have to do to remove the threat/s against them at this stage?
      I suspect it just isn't possible - and not because of 'Iranian Nationalism' - they are being asked/confronted with proving a negative when the other side has already decided that everything they say is a lie.
      We've been there before with Iraq but apparently that wont stop the same gambit from working again.
      And that is what happens when countries are not held accountable for their crimes.

    • But surely targeting Iran's nuclear facilities does mean 'taking out' Iran itself ??...I mean noone really thinks that Iran - having had its nuclear facilities bombed ( and probably other sites ) would just sit back and say "ouch that hurt ...betta completely fold and throw myself on the tender mercies of the US and her allies"?
      A more easily imagined response would be 'Ouch that hurt...see how you like it when its done to you' before firing off numerous missiles and ensuring the devastating war some seem to be thirsting after.

    • Who completely rebuilt the Iraqi infrastructure ??? I'm pretty sure the US just destroyed everything, said 'job done' and then handed over the mess.
      And keep in mind the cost of the Iraq war was AFTER Iraq had already been severely degraded by decades of war and sanctions AND the majority in that country opposed the leaders.

      As for the point made by JfL that we cant "reflexively assume that a bombing campaign will inevitably turn into a ground war" because we have the glowing example of Libya ( and yes there were ground troops ie special forces and no, we haven't heard the end of that adventure yet) ...well one would have to assume you'd be advocating a massive and extensive bombing campaign or there certainly would be a response and what then when you've bombed that country and destroyed its infrastructure ?
      And the question would remain ...would Israel feel any safer with a damaged and unstable Iran in the region?

  • Iran Hype undermined by Obama Administration Admissions
    • US 'hubris' might be a diplomatic way of putting it but I think its time to be honest and call it what it is - hypocrisy, lying and deceit.

    • And what kind of response would you suggest- I think we can guess how the US or Israel would respond - and it would result in the death of many innocents.
      Personally I think it would be nice to see an article in a major news paper with a title like ..."No War - Iran showing remarkable restraint against deadly provocations"

    • 'Israel is determined to maintain itself as the dominant regional power' ...( you could change Israel to US, and to a lesser extent - UK , France etc etc)
      However , this line in its various forms is repeated often but doesn't make sense and isn't correct.
      In the search for influence and maybe safety, these countries seek ( and achieve) Military Hardware Superiority - but nothing else.
      I remember reading a quote somewhere ,sometime which went something like " when all you've got is a hammer every problem will look like a nail" - well, the the US has some big sledgehammers but whats it managed to make???
      My point I guess is that Peace though Power is a well discredited illusion by now and it'd be nice if we could all grow up and move onto more positive models?

  • Iraq's al-Maliki Seeks Arrest of Sunni VP as Terrorist, Parliament in Uproar
    • Even if he was behind the bombing would that necessarily make him a terrorist? Are there no plain old political murders anymore?

  • Obama/ Maliki Conflicts on the Future of Iraq
    • al-Maliki can't do anything, however it shouldn't be up to him to either . Surely it is the role of the UN to stop powerful and aggressive nations from rolling roughshod around the globe?
      Will we ask sometime in the future how we got to this place where the world greatest aggressor OWNS the UN - the body set up to protect us from exactly that happening?

      ( and on the subject of the UN anyone know whose brilliant idea it was to have the Security Council?? - With veto powers??)

  • No War Crimes Trial for Bush/Cheney, While Chirac Convicted on minor Fraud
    • I've always thought it was pretty obviously to do with the color of your skin to be honest.

      There never seems to be much trouble identifying torture and war crimes when its 'the others' doing it...noone ever suggested that the Rwandans should 'look forward ,not back'.

  • Post-American Iraq by the Numbers
    • Although I agree with the sentiment I just can't think its ever a good thing to quote Colin Powell - hes either a first class patsy , a sniveling liar or an absolute driveling idiot - either way its telling that he was a US General. Anyone who could stand up in front of the world and present the rubbish he did should not ever have been allowed near anything pointier than a cotton bud.

    • Seems like a bit of 'splitting hairs ' here.

      "She made it quite clear that she was responding to the question of whether the effects of the sanctions were “worth it,” not the claim about the number, which she explicitly clarified she didn’t agree with." ...she thought the sanctions were 'worth it' in the full knowledge that they had resulted in the death of half a million babies?!

      I don't think that can be shrugged of with a 'meh' - collateral damage.

  • Israeli Ads against Marriage with American Jews are Part of a Population War
    • Awesome!- less black and white sounds like a good thing :)

    • Hmmm, could we put in our order for the 'educated, enterprising and energetic ' ones now then and somewhere else can have the rude, racist, religious extremists ( and tell them not to come by boat- Australia's not keen on boat arrivals)

  • Empire by the Numbers
    • Oh , please don't mention this - every time I hear mention of our new visitors I feel a bit sick. And 2500? ....I would bet my big fat arse that in no time there will be 10x that many ( and we'll still be wondering why that could possibly upset the Chinese)

  • Likud Government takes Revenge on Palestinians for UNESCO Membership
    • How embarrassing - I had hoped our pathetic government (Labor/Liberal- there's no difference) had at least abstained from the vote , but no, seems we are still playing the loyal 'Deputy Sheriff' . (cringe)

  • UNESCO Palestine Vote Isolates US Further
    • 'IF YOU FIND YOURSELF IN A HOLE, STOP DIGGING."- Why?? this works very well for them - before they were building with no justification at all - now at least they have the pathetic reasoning that they are land stealing/building as 'punishment' - so its open and justified ?!*
      So more apt in this case would be 'Change occurs when the cost of doing the same is greater than the cost of changing' ...and right now Israel is gaining land in the West Bank and loosing nothing.

  • Wagging the Dog with Iran's Maxwell Smart
    • "Contain" ???? - they don't want to contain Iran they want to use Iran as a replacement for Iraq ....I mean do you really think the government wants a whole load of angry and unemployed soldiers wandering the streets??

    • How about as a distraction form the 'Palestinian State' which seems to be scaring the begeevers out of both the US and Israel ....and when military states get worried they do the only thing they know how - go to war.

  • Al-`Awlaqi Should have been Tried in Absentia
    • No, of course not ....and all those Special Forces types are trained to deliver deep muscle massage, Tai Chi and flowers.

      In Europe ( and here in Australia for that matter) the Courts don't hand down death sentences but we have plenty of executioners on the payroll and just itching for some work.

    • Ha ha, see how far we have come - to a place where we debate whether or not its necessary for the trial before the execution .
      Rest assured that as you wrestle with this thorny issue your government is working to ensure it doesn't arise again, secret courts to hear the secret evidence ending in a secret conviction and inevitable death sentence carried out and celebrated way too publicly.
      What exactly did that guy do????- it must have been bad- it must have been truly heinous trust the government that much??

  • Helman: The Palestinians Seek UN Recognition
    • "As a deterrent, Israel has said that such a move would set back the peace process perhaps by years (although the press fails to report why Israel believes this need be so)." ...the same line is pushed by the US , but what does it mean?
      Does it mean anything more than - 'it wont work because I'll make sure it doesn't' ???

  • London Riots: Its the Economy, Stupid (Not a Clash of Civilizations)
  • Rebels claim Leader of Feared Khamis Brigade Dead
    • Hi

      everyone is probably way ahead of my understanding of this already but are the 'rebels' civilians or combatants or whatever? I thought the UN intervention was to prevent Gadaffi attacking civilians ( which seems perfectly right) but is that what these guys are?

  • 32 Nations Recognize Free Libya
    • Be fair ....JP has just taken the quote above and applied to to the US
      "Secretary of State Hilary Clinton made it clear that it took the US so long to take this step because Washington had been vetting the TNC leadership for signs it was actually committed to democratic elections and was free of radical Muslim tendencies."
      Honestly, the suggestion that the US is capable of anything that is genuinely well thought out ( not just 'in the best interests of the US') is pretty laughable by itself - that they take it upon themselves to vet foreign powers , confer the power of leadership to groups in other sovereign nations, even recognize the signs of democracy ( having been so long since they practiced it themselves) - and finally well, yes they should be well versed in recognizing Muslim radicals by now having had so many years creating them :(

  • The Audacity of the Gaza Flotilla
    • And when/if they are criticized they haul out the old chestnut " the UN didn't act - the UN is useless......" rather than taking responsibility for their own selfish actions.

  • Time to Begin Leaving Afghanistan
    • Thank goodness- I've been missing your comments :) I was close to giving up on IC - so nauseating has been the War-Fanboy flag waving of late.

      About the only thing I agree with JC on is that troops should leave Afghanistan, however unlike him I have never felt that war "morphed into something I could no longer support' - it was always a sh**ful idea - full of vengeance and little else.

      Anyway, thanks for the very healthy cynicism.

  • Obama right not to Release Usama Photo
    • "Then, while Americans have forgotten all the horrible photos that came out of Abu Ghraib, of Iraqis being tortured and abused, the Muslim world has not."

      Nor would I want my children seeing them -fortunately it is not about our children though - it is about children/families who are getting to see the results of the US military adventure first hand. For them photographs are just another proof of what they already know from first hand experience.

    • A very good example of setting the bar low . And if they were 'spat upon' then we could still say yes, 'but they weren't spat on twice'.

    • It is not - and has never been about the photographs/images of 'war pornography' as you put it - but rather the behavior those images depict. Change the behavior - photographs won't be a problem.

  • Saif admits Qaddafis are Brutal Foreign Occupiers
    • And the 'military age' was interpreted to just about be any male between the cradle and the grave ( I think it was between 12 -60?) At any rate they were sent back into the city to be legitimatize targeted as 'fighters' ...because as the military spokesman patiently explained "anyone who stayed behind was a fighter'.

  • Qaddafi Using Cluster bombs on Civilian Areas
    • Juan, could you please comment on the posts relating to US and UK ( especially) use of cluster bombs in built up areas and how that differs from Gaddafi using them?

  • Questions for Glenn Greenwald on Libya and the end of NATO
  • Answer to Glenn Greenwald
    • You betcha! Its not oil or even military adventurism, that stirs up the electorate but Immigration - particularly Refugees. No government wants the human flotsam of another countries crisis washing up on their doorstep and ruining their chances of reelection.

      Much better to 'fight to make it safe' for them to stay where they are - or to send them back to. Though in this case 'safe' is a a very subjective term especially when they're sent back to a country where our troops are still fighting
      (and dying) ..hardly what I'd think of as safe.

    • That's not about the war ('morphing') then its about personal realization. If they lied last time why would we assume they won't/aren't lying again?

    • "...Afghanistan, which has morphed into a war I can’t support."

      What does it take for a war to 'morph' into something you can't support? At what point did that happen in Afghanistan?

  • Obama on Libya vs. Trump, Palin, Bachmann, Romney, Gingrich and Carrot Top
    • Maybe a little to do with population as well - Iraq ( population 31 Million ) didn't seem to go real well , Afghanistan - land of Poppies,Donkeys and Mud Huts ( population 29 million) also seems a bit ....'impractical' in retrospect - whereas Libya has a population of only 6.5 million - that's gotta be a more 'practical intervention' ,right??

    • 'The United States reported a trade deficit equivalent to 46.3 Billion USD in January of 2011'

      link to

      ..America is not 'going bankrupt' and at this stage another $600 million per week isn't going to make a hell of a lot of difference.

    • Because then the very powerful military industries which have been doing very well thank you will not do so well- peace ...or even 'sitting this one out' is not good for their bottom line so you will continue as before 'bomb- wring hands- bomb'.

    • Amazing social conditioning ...a few( too many) years of "Cammo is cool, Bombing is 'surgical' , collateral damage is 'their' fault -patriots don't ask questions -SUPPORT THE TROOPS' claptrap works ,obviously, since now anyone with an ounce of caring and humanity( apparently) is behind the 'Killing for Peace' push.

      You would think that if there are so many smart people designing smart weapons there would have to also be at least on or two mildly clever people who could design a blueprint for to live harmoniously as Good Global Neighbors?

  • An Open Letter to the Left on Libya
    • Or Maybe it’s because he’s incredibly frustrated.....whatever the case I'm sure from reading the Professors comments in the past he can manage in a bitch fight without your help.

      I prefer a non interventionist approach myself - but I'm a leftie liberal pacifist christian vegetarian.

    • Bombs are not free. War is a big industry - one of the big US exports ....with things so dreary you should be happy someone is drumming up trade.

      & I can't agree with the sentiment of your last paragraph enough - yes, please go home and stop looking after us :)

    • think less about merit and more about business - not oil - the US other big export WAR ...its like the goose that lays the golden egg.

    • What is 'generally pacifist'? ...similar to 'mostly vegetarian' and 'virtually a virgin'????

  • It's Official: Tunisia Now Freer than the U.S.
    • Its common to refer to our diminishing rights as being "whittled away" - it allows us to claim ignorance - when in fact our rights were not taken, encroached ,abrogated or whittled away & certainly not by some big scary bogey man in a Dark Suit ......we just gave them up - a little at a time with none to blame but ourselves.
      Since we haven't had the guts to protect the rights we HAD it'll be interesting to see how we fare trying to get some back - I think we could take more than a few lessons from the ME.

  • Mubarak Defies a Humiliated America, Emulating Netanyahu
    • While I recognize and really enjoy the passion of your article you and the majority of your very supportive posters are so oblivious to your overwhelming sense of exceptionalsism that you can't see how distorted your view of the world and the US place and role in that really is.

      Your whole commentary is so 'US Wierd' its hard to know where to start but lets try with the title .."Mubarak Defies a Humiliated America, Emulating Netanyahu":
      -foreign leaders obviously acting on their own vrs a united America??
      -"Humiliated America" ...I dont think so , maybe 'humiliated Obama' 'humiliated foreign office' America is not humiliated- 'America' has another issue entirely.
      -'emulating Netanyahu' ..and that'd be because Bibi's not doing what hes told fact saying something much more like "f*ck U" ?? Where's that attitude come from- I always thought that was what the US prided itself on saying to the rest of the world.

      Foreign leaders aren't suddenly going crazy - nothings changing - Government , regardless of where it is , and the 'Elites' who back them and profit through that power are exactly the same everywhere including the USA. Just think on the last line in the article:
      "We are only one step away of being treated, with “protest zones” and “Patriot Acts” just as badly as the peaceful Egyptian protesters have been." The Egyptian army said it won't fire on the protesters do you believe the US army would not fire on its own citizens - are you one step away or one step past?

    • Starting wars and killing people where does that leave GW and Obama on the rankings??

  • Aljazeera's Leaks Reveal Sham 'Peace Process,' Israeli Stonewalling
    • Obama offered to veto 'unpleasant' UNSC votes as part of a deal ...Israel refused the offer since it was nothing the US doesn't already do for nix.

  • No News is Good News (for Them)
    • I think the problem stems from this belief .."the world’s most powerful country" [and variations of]
      If you are the 'worlds most powerful', 'the only superpower', 'the greatest nation on earth' then why would you need to bother with anything else?
      Its really not good if you start believing your own propaganda ...some little countries will start doing things you don't know about (until after) and others will start kicking your butt - and you won't know where they hell they came from...and while you're putting down those minor insurrections(with the greatest military the world has ever seen) the worlds other "greatest superpower" ( the one that's been buying your country) will move in and take over your shop and put up a sign that reads " Made in China".

  • New Wikileaks: US Knew Tunisian Gov. Rotten Corrupt, Supported Ben Ali Anyway
    • Adam, I find myself agreeing with everything you've written - right up to the point where you see the US as a follower , not a leader...
      "After a half-century of sidling up beside torturers and murderers is anyone truly surprised that the United States is now known for practicing torture?"
      Unfortunately the US hasn't been 'learning' torture and abuse by 'hanging around with the wrong crowd' as it were - the US has been practicing torture and abuse since the beginning and has exported it to other countries via their military and covert ops. (not to mention the wonderful role model the Prison system continues to be )
      The US behavior in this regard has added to an environment which normalizes such practices.
      That you haven't noticed any of this before now is just an indication of how bad the stink has become.

    • It is that 'slack' in systems which make them inherently unstable. In politics its the purpose of the 'opposition'- the party not in government to address this 'slack' by drawing attention to it when it becomes too pronounced - that's how the system is kept in trim.[in Australia small Parties hold a balance of power and "keep the bastards honest' ..or at least try] When there is no real opposition there's no checks to put the system back into trim and eventually the whole tears itself apart.

      Theres a couple of other posts which ask the same question re Egypt and the US...the same applies to all systems - when they are not balanced they tear themselves apart - -often the drastic actions taken to 'correct' the imbalance at that stage only serve to make it worse - its not a matter of 'if' its just 'when'.

  • Over 9,000 Murders by Gun in US; 39 in UK
    • Maybe no 'gun culture' then but guns + culture ...= America??

      Perhaps there might be more similarity in gun related deaths between America and Israel??

    • Something which has always seemed interesting to me since the US is so very fond of guns is the way they are apparently viewed by the US military as they deliver democracy and freedom to families in the ME as evidence that those with them are in fact 'terrorists/insurgents/anti government fighters'.

      The 'logic' seems to be something like - 'Gun + US American = Good , Gun + anyone else = Bad, Gun + brown skin = kill on sight"

    • You have to be joking!? Guns vrs cars ...that you can't see the absolute difference in design/use/function is frightening ( and to 'outsiders' quite "American")
      But for you I will explain the fundamental problem with your analogy ...

      Cars are for transporting people and goods from a to b. Cars are sometimes involved in people deaths - almost always the result of accident - I have never heard of a case where a would be murderer went out and purchased a car in order to kill someone with it. Cars replaced the horse and cart as a more efficient means of transport.

      Guns are designed for killing people. They are also used for hunting and target practice but they were developed and are primarily used to kill people.There is an argument that goes "guns don't kill people , people kill people" ...this is true but fails to add the obvious point that people with guns kill people- more efficiently (after all that's what they were designed for). Guns replaced the bow and arrow as a more efficient means of killing people in war.

      "Guns are not causal to the committing of crimes." No, not to 'committing crimes" but there certainly has to be a direct correlation between the use of a gun in a crime and the likelihood of someone being injured/killed by that gun. And that increases in a mass killing/shooting - minus the gun = less death/injury.

  • White Terrorism
    • Aren't those arguments AGAINST the Terrorist label rather than for? 'Terrorist' is an overused term - to the point now it realistically means little more than 'other'.
      Better to call a spade a spade - it was murder - hes a murderer.

  • Iran's Oily Revenge on US Drivers, US Troops
    • "President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad must enjoy sticking the West with this winter’s high prices, as a little revenge for the sanctions.

      Another petty act of revenge has to do with his blockage of petroleum trucks from entering into Afghanistan."

      These actually look like measured responses to pretty vengeful [unwarranted] sanctions imposed by the US on Iran.

      How else would you have Iran respond Juan?

  • Wikileaks: Israelis 'Intend to Keep the Gazan Economy on the Brink of Collapse'
    • "There must be a special place in hell…" fortunately God is infinitely more compassionate and forgiving than us, so since we can't sit back and wait for some kind of Divine comeuppance I have to ask "What can we do?"

  • Iraq has a Government: Can we Please Come Home Now?
  • Egypt: Israel's Nukes Destabilizing to Region (Wikileaks)
    • I always assumed that was a deliberate Israeli maneuver to test their control over foreign media - obviously total since they immediately returned to the old 'alleged' 'rumored' 'unconfirmed' BS.

  • Karzai Wishes he had Joined Taliban
    • Often these stories /talk backs seem to reflect a sentiment pretty close to 'damn those ungrateful bastards" . Almost as though the US/Nato was actually invited there in the first place- weird that the locals would be so ungrateful for the death and destruction delivered to their very doorstep.

  • Obama Should Let the UN apply Economic Sanctions to Israel
    • Why would you bag out the UN??
      I would really like to understand how anyone thinks the 'UN' could act any way other than how its member states direct? ...I mean its a vast committee isn't it? All it really does is reflect the imbalance of power and skewed politics which exist in the world, and which are exerted most overtly by those voting members of the Security Council - the US key amongst them ....surely??

    • Wow Adam - you managed to read a lot into 4 lines! But words are important and are very open to interpretation.
      That said could you please explain how Israel would not be a 'Middle Eastern' country ...or how it would be 'European' because I'm pretty sure its in the Middle East not Europe?

  • Israelis Jettison Peace Talks in Favor of Massive Land Theft; Brazil, Argentina Recognize Palestinian State
    • Exactly how long is a reasonable amount of time for negotiations???
      I think its absurd how the negotiations clock gets reset every time a new US or Israeli leader steps in - The 'Middle East Peace Process' has been going on longer than I can remember - since 1948 in one form or another and with various levels of seriousness and fluctuating levels of background/outright violence.
      Time to step back and butt right out - they will find a peace one way or another- & Israel can finally settle in as a Middle Eastern country [which it is] and not a Western [US] satellite.
      And we could all get on to marveling about how wonderful peace is ????

  • Wikileaks and the New McCarthyism: Maybe we Just Need a More Open Government
    • Hi,
      for some little while now I've wondered if you've gone a little Rocky Horror Show & taken " a step to the right" ??? Anyway, with that in mind I shouldn't be too surprised that you 'disapprove' of the Wikileaks (tsk tsk ), and I wouldn't have bothered posting except that I think you are just sooooooooo wrong in your analysis and trite dismissal ...."I feel about Wikileaks the way I feel about Ben & Jerry’s ice cream as a perpetual dieter. I wish they wouldn’t make it, but when I have a bowl, I have to say I really enjoy it."
      - its just about free speech isn't it , you don't think its illegal ( yet) ? So do you really think .."I feel about free speech the way I feel about Ben & Jerry’s ice cream as a perpetual dieter. I wish they wouldn’t make it, but when I have a bowl, I have to say I really enjoy it."????

      I think what Wikileaks has done is open a window on the lies and connivance's behind the crimes - what we are seeing in response is governments deciding to slam that shut again in a way that will make the search for truth and accountability - an honest reckoning of the past and map for our future impossible - scary and even illegal.
      I would have supposed that as a contemporary historian you would particularly have felt a strong need to protect against closed government , against making knowing a crime.

  • Looking for PETN, Scanning Grandma at the Airport, and the Future of Air Travel
    • "But if al-Qaeda and its sympathizers could manage to blow up only a few airliners with PETN, they could have a significant negative effect on the economy and could very possibly drive some American airlines into bankruptcy." ....I'm surprised that you haven't noticed but Mr bin Laden has already succeeded beyond his wildest is not just the American airlines which are flying toward bankruptcy but the whole USA. And I might add he would never have been so successful except for the enthusiastic help of American politicians ( whatever ilk) and the entire cast of the USA who have been as happy to throw away their rights as they have been to drop millions and millions of dollars in bombs on people they don't know...well done!!

  • Could Wikileaks leave Iraq without a Government?
    • No one is being damaged by Wikileaks or the documents -thats the same sort of false rationale we hear too often from the US military/government ... they are being damaged by their own behaviour as evidenced by the documents.
      Anyway ,what does it say if he is allowed to continue forming government ?? Don't we want democracy and justice for the Iraqi people ...isn't that why Saddam was put on trial and hanged?

  • Will Resumption of Israeli Colonization of West Bank End the Two State Solution?
    • I really wish it were that people are 'wising up'to the manouvers of the Israel but I dont think thats it. There was a time when (if pressed) they would find a pretence for their abusive treatment of the Palestinians ...they enacted laws which provided cover for them and us.
      However, Israel has become so blatant in its excess and exeptionalism that it just can't be ignored anymore. They have got to the stage that they just dont care what 'we' think anymore - they know from years of experience that they will get their way - powers that be will cover their asses.
      The Palestinians have very little to bargain with and the US routinley quashes even that - having been forced into negotiations 'with no preconditions' (like hell!) there was never anything to stop the Israelis continuing with building or anything else they might want.
      Its sad and humiliating to watch the whole charade - especially to know that we're part of it - Abbas should pack up while hes still got a little pride left.

  • Rumsfeld, Bush and the Supreme War Crime
    • Absolutley!

      "That the United States has failed to come to terms with its war crimes in Iraq only sets us up for a repeat performance." - it should not be up to the USA to 'come to terms' with its war crimes - it had demonstrated previously that it is unable/unwilling to do so.
      " For a nation that lives by laws and the esteem of allies to act like an outlaw will ultimately undermine its own foundation." - you obviously have a differnt persepective than I . The USA ( as above) has committed war crimes previously demonstrating a total disregard for 'laws' . Though I will say the USA has been very quick quoting and applying the same laws to others ( looks alot like double standards)
      "It is like playing golf in a bathroom– you’re going to end up with a lot of self-inflicted bruises." - this line perhaps sums up the whole underlying problem. The implication that its all about the USA you'll end up with 'alot of self inflicted bruises'. Its NOT like playing golf in the bathroom - its like giving kinder kids guns - a whole lot of OTHER people are going to get killed.

    • That quaint notion of 'Rule of Law' is all that holds civilisation together ...just because you can't reach that lofty ideal ( its not really) or impinges on your ability to wage war the way you might like - doesn't mean its outdated or wrong.
      In fact that is the evidence that it is very much needed - what is lacking is the will and ability to strive to enforce it - equally and consistantly.

  • Obama dismisses Iran War Prospects, overrules Clinton
    • And you would listen to a thing that man uttered this time round because he "seems determined to redeem himself" - hes' either a liar or an idiot - maybe even both.

  • 50 Dead, 128 wounded in Iraq Attacks
  • Amnesty: 30,000 Held in Iraq without Due Process;
    Evidence of Abuse
  • Top Ways 9/11 Broke Islamic Law
    • ....see what I mean- now you have a whole lot of talkback about about this religion vrs that religion + terror , big in there being discussion of 'Islamic Terror' . It doesn't help.

    • Language Matters-
      Headlines ( and stories) like "Top Ways 9/11 Broke Islamic Law"are not all that helpful in separating peoples perceptions of the Twin Towers attack from being a Muslim/Islamic attack, in fact every time you link the two things ( positively or negatively) it reinforces this connection.
      ( if we had 9 years of 'Christian Extremist' stories people would be avoiding churches )

      It would be more helpful if you were to have an article "Top ways 9/11 Broke International Law" and then continue the story referring to the perpetrators as what they are - criminals, attackers,murderers.

  • Top Stories More Important than Quran-Burning Nut Job
    • "There is no doubt that American soldiers have killed innocent Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan, but they don’t shout “In the name of Christ” or “Christ is great!” while they do it." - No , thank goodness they are acting purely out of - what exactly? Greed ( they all get paid) Revenge ( many have been quoted as saying they signed up after 9/11) or perhaps with no motivation at all exept than to follow orders - thats just soooooo much better?!
      "Imagine if, in the leaked video of Apache helicopters gunning down Iraqis, the gunners had been chanting about the grapes of wrath and God’s swift sword." ...No instead we heard them laughing and chattering away like a bunch of adolescent schoolboy bullies - nice.

    • Isn't this just a natural outcome of the totally unquestioning support demanded for 'our troops' - where any questioning is immediately equated with a lack of patriotism or worse.? Along with Rules of Engagement which sentence civilians to death for making the troops nervous (they can shoot if they feel 'threatened'???? they're soldiers FFS!)
      In such a protected environment its a natural development that the boundaries will be pushed ...a little at a time until you just can't hide what they've become.
      Don't be so surprised you recognise your government anymore - same deal.

  • The Invisible Deluge in Pakistan (Cole in Tomdispatch)
    • Perhaps the hypocrisy of USA groups organizing aid for a county which is currently being demonized and bombed by their own government would just be too much....or put more simply maybe Americans don't want to waste their money on saving people their tax dollars are going to be spent on killing anyway.

  • They used to Burn Catholic Churches, now they Burn Mosques
    • Most Americans might be indifferent to this story, and I'm sure most Iranians also think their economy is the biggest issues there however I believe you are wrong.
      The way your country is viewed by the rest of the world will ultimately make or break your economy. Put simply - if you were an employer would you give a job to the Dove Church Pastor ? Right now his is the voice of the USA around the world -a country currently known for two very nasty wars+++ and Guantanamo Bay- other countries might get a bit shy about doing business with what appears to be such a big mouthed bully.

      (+ it might also not be news there but we have all noticed USA bringing their own special brand of freedom and democracy to other countries as well)

  • Iraqi Soldier Kills 2 Americans, Wounds 9
    • I was wondering a similar thing.
      The article has so little detail ...there is always some background as though there must be some recent incident/personal link /hidden terrorist leaning as though it is the only way to explain why one of the natives would go mad and shoot the good guys.
      I wonder how many US troops have not been killed because the Iraqi was able to swallow their pride ......again.

  • 'Burn the Qur'an Day' Endangers US Troops: Petraeus
    • Actually, I think its much more likely to endanger unarmed ,very upset Afghani civilians than heavily armed and always very nervous American troops.....but I don't suppose that'd worry the good Christian folk @ the Dove Outreach Center.
      Doesn't the USA have any 'Hate Speech ' or 'Racial Vilification ' laws ???...& yes, I know it's religion not race..this time, but surely stirring up such hatred is covered by some kind of law?

  • Iraqi Military Acts Swiftly to Avert Minibus Bombing at Rusafa HQ
    • Have I missed something or is this a private argument?? I can't see anything in Christiane's post about the US State Department or the US as a 'Superpower" ??? But for what its worth I don't think we'll have to wait a century for that jaunt to end - in fact does anyone else use USA and Superpower in the same sentence anymore?

  • Republican National Committee Slashes New York Muslim Cabbie
    • "I repeat that it is the Gingrich’s and Lazio’s (and Malkins) who created the atmosphere in which this kind of incident occurs." ...Did they? or did they merely give voice to the dark thoughts of (too) many which were already there just waiting for the first person to to utter it aloud - to give it legitimacy ?
      Looks like the closet racists are 'coming out' ...wonder what that parade will look like.

  • Dear Rev. Graham: Obama was not born a Muslim and neither is anyone else
    • As a parent used to dealing with childish arguments I think the correct response to claims Obama is a Muslim is ...."and so???" (vacant look, turn back and engage in other activity/conversation)
      Any other response gives credibility to the the notion of the (bad) 'other' ....a group to whom we must (actively) prove we don't belong thus demonstrating their 'differentness'/'otherness'.
      Don't buy into it.

  • Israeli and Lebanese Armies Trade Fire; at least 4 Dead
    • Why not? They would respond the way they have been trained to .....soldiers think with weapons.

  • US Military Mission in Iraq ends not with a Bang but a Whimper
    • "Now if only the Afghan parliament would negotiate a similar SOFA for that country, and the other war could be wound down as well."

      Why is the onus on counties invaded by the USA such as Iraq & Afghanistan to negotiate a SOFA to give that same invading force a face saving pass out? ....Doesn't that just demonstrate the absolute moral bankruptcy of the whole venture, like " We are really tired of destroying your country now because you are just sooooo ungrateful but before we go you must thank us profusely and ask us very...... very nicely"

      And did the Iraqis gain anything at all from being 'saved' from the tyranny of Saddam?

  • War is Theft: Pentagon cannot account for $8.6 Billion of Iraq's Reconstruction Funds
    • Iraqis should reimburse the USA for bombs dropped on their homes, bullets used to kill their families?

    • You thought the Iraqis were going to pay for the destruction USA wreaked on their country? - all the USA should be getting is a bill for war reparations.

  • Repubs Plot Israel-Iran Apocalypse and the Collapse of the US Economy
    • Do you think that will stop them- I don't think they ask permission very much and care less what the response is?

  • Israeli Court Punishes Palestinian-Israeli for Passing
    • It doesn't look racist , the application of this (ridiculous) law in this situation is racist.
      I would like to know if she clearly asked him if he was Jewish or not ( I don't think she did - just assumed from the name).

      For this law to NOT be racist it would also have to be equally applied to all those other common little deceptions like :
      suit and tie- appears to have money/job
      no ring- unmarried
      nice smile- must be a nice guy
      not drooling - must be intelligent

      And what would a law like this do to 'consent'? - wow, glad I'm not teaching safe sex there.

  • Advice for General Petraeus on the Rules of Engagement:
    It’s Neither/Nor, Not Either/Or
    • Yikes!!!
      Don't say stuff like that- if they stop doing Counterinsurgency they will start doing Full Spectrum Warfare (or whatever ridiculous title overwhelming killingpower has these days).
      Lets just hope that USA rides the Military Machine onto the scrapheap of Empire BEFORE too many more (tens/hundreds of) thousands of lives are so thoughtless and needlessly destroyed.

  • Palin on the Ground Zero Mosque vs. the Founding Fathers
    • Perhaps while were on the topic of language - its use and abuse perhaps we could start to reign in some of the - well, quite sensational and provocative language that has become so commonplace but goes to show that maybe we're all often guilty of speaking without thinking first.
      A fine example has appeared numerous times in these feedbacks- 'Ground Zero' ........actually the site of the Twin Towers attack . Think about the connotations of this title and how it might sound to people in other countries perhaps which have suffered far worse attacks - catastrophes. What does this phrases use say about how the user views their place in the world?

    • V.Good :)
      Much funnier though if there wasn't the ever lingering fear that this woman ( and/or others of her ilk) are influencing USA politics and could one day be President - kinda wipes the smile off your face eh?

  • Abbas: Israeli Colonization Impedes Start of Direct Talks
    • Good luck with that though I'm pretty sure ( and sad) that you could safely write the words "Greater Israel" across the map now and save yourself the trouble of updating down the track.

      As for SA I'm pretty sure they had plenty of people from both inside and outside the country making some unmistakable 'red flag statements' which contributed greatly to the time when "the politicians instead chose life, and the soldiers and fighters stood down."

  • June Deadliest Month for NATO in Afghanistan;
    Congress cuts Civilian Aid by $4 bn.
    • Also, the 'cost overruns' etc that you describe are blackmail pure and simple want the job done/finished so you pay. To anyone looking at this system of deliberate under quoting , bonuses ( for actually delivering what is agreed!) ,and extra charges to cover 'cost overruns' to would clearly be corrupt.

    • Yes, it would be very nice if someone could explain to me the difference between 'tipping' - which appears to me to be pretty compulsory ( at least in the USA) and a bribe it to do with timing - one paid prior to service delivery the other after, or is it just dependent on who is telling the tale?

  • Obama's MacArthur Moment? McChrystal Disses Biden
    • Maybe McChrystal is looking for a future move into politics......I get the feeling there's plenty of ex military types who recon they know just what the USA ( and the rest of us who have to share Earth too) need, and they'd have plenty of backing.

  • Petraeus Memo Widens scope of US Military Covert Operations in ME
    • Thank goodness- I was wondering if I was the only one who had noticed. I've been in 'Shock and Awe' as a result of things which have in the past/ and continue to take place in the USA for years.
      The atrocious laws , attitudes towards your own citizens - the way the most vulnerable are treated/disregarded.... None of what has happened in the last decade ( since September 11) should be a surprise to anyone as it is merely a more visible continuation of what was happening before.
      If you didn't complain then I think it may be too late now - look to your poor and disenfranchised - its where the future is.

  • Why Economic Sanctions on Iran will Fail
    • this should be turned into an online competition or something might even get some people thinking...asking...

      Iran is our arch enemy because's easy to spell.
      Iran is our arch enemy because........we can't find Nauru.
      Iran is our arch enemy because........all the other crazy, gun totting, lunatics are on our side.

      I'm sure there are some good ones clever people ;)

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