Friday, February 28, 2003

A Great Canadian (and American) and She's Just 17:

    "Rebecca Willems, a 17-year-old Ottawa high school student, received a standing ovation yesterday from a crowd of military officers and high school students for scolding John McCallum, the Minister of Defence, over anti-American remarks by one of his Liberal colleagues.

    Mr. McCallum, speaking on North American solidarity at the Conference of Defence Associations, told the conference "never must we be smug and superior vis-á-vis the United States."

    His speech came one day after Carolyn Parrish, MP for Mississauga Centre, said she hated Americans, calling them "bastards" intent on going to war with Iraq.

    Ms. Willems, a dual citizen of Canada and the United States, took Mr. McCallum to task during a question-and-answer session.

    "You stated at the beginning of your speech that we as Canadians must not be smug and consider ourselves superior to the United States," said Ms. Willems, who was attending the event with her private school's history class.

    "Yet how can the government ask that of the Canadian people when careless and offensive remarks continue to come from Parliament, such as the unnecessary remark that was made yesterday by a Liberal MP after caucus?

    "How can Canada move forward with a positive attitude of our neighbours when our own leaders cannot?"
-- National Post

Thursday, February 27, 2003

Kurtz Way Off Track:

I'll start by saying that I'm a big Howard Kurtz fan. I think his take on media is usually pretty insightful and, at the very least, interesting. How, then, does one explain today's muliptle foolish missteps by my favorite media critic.

Howard says it's about time that some of the Sunday talk shows booked anti-war arguments. Hello, Howard, have you ever heard of Charlie Rangel, Dennis Kucinich, Al Sharpton and the many others who have spouted anti-war slogans on Sunday talk shows for the last six months? What Howard fails to mention is that with Stalinist/Communist/Pro-North Korean ANSWER as the anti-war movement's leader, it is difficult indeed to find a "normal" activist to go on the circuit. It has been mentioned many times before that if the KKK held a "Tax Cut Rally" how many big name conservatives would How many members of the KKK would be invited to discuss tax policy with Tim So why should it be any different with self-proclaimed defenders of heinous, anti-American dictators?

Howard fails again regarding the Rather - Saddam interview - a true debacle - by giving it relatively little ink. I hope he does more about it tomorrow.

And for all those boo hoos sobbed on behalf of Phil Donahue for only be given 6 months to get his show off the ground, I remind you that he was paid MILLIONS. The reason for the millions was his supposed "built-in" audience, an audience that never materialized. It was clear from the start of Phil's show that his "blame America first" attitude was not right for the times.

Better luck tomorrow, Howard.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

March, already?
President Bush is on a Roll Too:
Amazing that the Left has trouble understanding this.
    "It is presumptuous and insulting to suggest that a whole region of the world or the 1/5 of humanity that is muslim is somehow untouched by the most basic aspirations of life. Human cultures can be vastly different. Yet the human heart desires the same good things everywhere on earth. In our desire to be safe from brutal and bullying oppression, human beings are the same. In our desire to care for our children and give them a better life. We're the same. For these fundamental reasons, freedom and democracy will always and everywhere have greater appeal than the slogans of hatred and the tactics of terror." - President Bush

Steven Den Beste On A Roll Again:
    But for all their pontification about vast numbers of casualties, that's not what they really fear. What they are most afraid of is that the war will succeed rapidly and seem easy. They fear a rapid and nearly bloodless conquest. They fear that we'll move in, that the Iraqi military will mostly surrender without fighting, and that the war will end in days with almost no one dying. They'd rather see hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians be slaughtered than to see a fast and easy conquest, for their greatest fear is that if conquest of Iraq is too easy then the US will decide to do more of it. If war cannot be prevented, they want a huge body count, and if possible they want as many of those bodies as possible to be American. If there must be war they need it to be seen as a failure, just as Viet Nam was. This is not because they are bloodthirsty, but because they fear the alternative even more. An American war of global conquest would ultimately cause even more death and destruction, or so they fear.

    So they warn of another Viet Nam and speak in grave tones about quagmire because they're afraid it won't be one. They protest this war because they fear the US. American power is the true issue. It doesn't matter where it might be flexed or what the local issues are.

    In fact, you occasionally see comments from some to the effect that they'd actually support a military conquest of Iraq, as long as it wasn't America doing it. They bear no love for Saddam, but they fear him much less than they fear American power and American will to use that power. Saddam might create an Arabian empire but it would only directly affect the Arabs. If America creates an empire it will cover the world.

MP Calls Americans 'bastards' :


    "A Liberal MP has apologized for saying about Americans: "I hate those bastards." MP Carolyn Parrish was speaking to reporters about Canada's diplomatic initiative on Iraq. At the end of her comments Parrish said, "Damn Americans ... I hate those bastards."

Friedman on Target Again:

The debate on war with Iraq has never been on the merits for Left. It has been about Bush, Florida, Anti-Semitism, the Invironment and checking American power. Tom Friedman writes:
    " We all know what this is about: the Jewish question. "For too many Europeans, Arabs are of no moral interest in and of themselves," observes the Middle East analyst Stephen P. Cohen. "They only become of interest if they are fighting Jews or being manhandled by Jews. Then their liberation becomes paramount, because calling for it is a way to stick it to the Jews. Europeans' demonstrations for a free Palestine — and not for a free Iraq or any other Arab country — smell too much like a politically correct form of anti-Semitism, part of a very old story."

    The truth is, France is not interested in promoting égalité, fraternité and liberté in the Middle East. It is primarily interested today in managing American power. It is primarily interested in positioning France to become the world's next great "Uncola," the leader of the alternative coalition to American power."

Monday, February 17, 2003

Mayor of London Attacks Warren G. Harding as 'Racist':
    "This is a president [Bush] who uses the death penalty with complete abandon and disregard for any respect for life. This is no example. So let everyone recognise what has happened here today: that Britain does not support this war for oil. The British people will not tolerate being used to prop up the most corrupt and racist American administration in over 80 years."

This quote from London Mayor Ken Livingstone (via Andrew Sullivan) is a vicious slur against one of our American leaders. What the hell did Harding do to you, Ken?!!!
Actually, reading this short bio on Harding makes me think he could have been a pretty good and ineffectual leader of France in 2003:
    Before his nomination, Warren G. Harding declared, "America's present need is not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration; not agitation, but adjustment; not surgery, but serenity; not the dramatic, but the dispassionate; not experiment, but equipoise; not submergence in internationality, but sustainment in triumphant nationality...."

    A Democratic leader, William Gibbs McAdoo, called Harding's speeches "an army of pompous phrases moving across the landscape in search of an idea." Their very murkiness was effective, since Harding's pronouncements remained unclear on the League of Nations, in contrast to the impassioned crusade of the Democratic candidates, Governor James M. Cox of Ohio and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Friday, February 14, 2003

Before 9/11 This Would Have Been Big News:
    AUBURN, N.Y. — Robert Chambers, who became notorious in the 1980s as the "Preppie killer" when he strangled a young woman during a tryst in Central Park, was released from prison Friday after serving his full 15-year sentence for manslaughter.

Thursday, February 13, 2003

Monday, February 10, 2003

NATO Vote In Favor Of Protecting Turkey wins 16-3, Loses Via Veto:

France, Belgium and Germany continued the Old Europe unilateralism by denying protection to fellow NATO member Turkey. From a NATO press conference:
    Q: Klaus Pompers: Very short question, Secretary General: Who is to blame?

    Robertson: I don’t allocate blame. Three countries have broken silence. Therefore, 16 countries agree with the tasking.

Also of note from the press conference was a question from a reporter from Belgium. With the future of Turkey riding on this vote, this the question Belgium asked:
    Q: Jan Balliauw, Belgium Television. I’m here. Belgium is a small country and host country of NATO. Will it have consequences for the position of Belgium in the alliance? For instance, the location of headquarters?

What brave people....
Saddam, It's Time to Get Dressed:
When I have trouble getting my three year old daughter dressed, I tell her I will count to 3 and if she isn't getting dressed following the countdown then I will "do it for her".

The trouble comes when, after I've counted to 3 and I start to dress her by force, she begins to wail that NOW she is willing to comply to the dressing demand.

A parent has choice here. A parent can give in to the wailing, hoping the child will now comply, or a parent can continue to dress the child by force, all the while advising the child that a fair chance had been given to her and, unfortunately, once the count of 3 had passed, then alternatives to forced dressing were no longer negotiable.

I am like the latter parent. Once the count of 3 has come and gone, nothing, I mean nothing, can change the course of events. My daughter's decision to comply must be made PRIOR to the counting of 3.

Saddam, the US is counting and 3 will be reached on Thursday evening. Nothing you say on Friday will make a difference, none of your wailing will divert us from your forced compliance. You see, the USA is very good parent (and France and Germany are the horrible parents you see at the mall with the ill-behaved kids).

Saturday, February 08, 2003

Iraqis Flown to Hungary:

    Iraqi volunteers have started arriving in the village of Taszár (about 180km south-west of Budapest), with the local mayor saying fears among locals of becoming a target for terrorists are running high.

    A special plane carrying the first batch of Iraqi exiles and opponents of Saddam Hussein arrived in Taszár last Wednesday, for "non-combat training" from the US military. More were expected to arrive at the weekend, with exact numbers being kept secret.Stern explained that training would include learning interpreting skills and support functions (like translation and liaison work) in support of the coalition forces in the event of any conflict with Iraq.

    "They will also have basic training in self defense," he said, adding that when their training was over they would be flown to "outside of Hungary".

    Péter Matyuc, Director-in-Chief for Communication at the Hungarian Defense Ministry (HM), said that "dozens" of Iraqi exiles had landed in Taszár.

    Unconfirmed reports in the Hungarian media have speculated the numbers of arrivals at anywhere between 500 and 3,000.

    Stern did not rule out that some of those trained in Taszár could take part in any future administration which might be formed after the liberation of Iraq from what he described as "Saddam Hussein’s brutal grip".

Hungarian PM Supports US:
    "Now is the moment for us to realize that America and Europe will lose out if they are unable to forge a united stance regarding Iraq," said Medgyessy in an interview with Hungarian daily Népszabadság.

    Speaking in Athens last week, Medgyessy emphasized that, for the sake of UN prestige and the future, Baghdad could not be allowed to ignore the relevant Security Council decision.

Could someone please contact the NYTimes and inform them that Hungary is part of Europe?