Wednesday, March 18, 2015 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Netanyahu, reparations, finger, letter to Iran, and Victory Day

I did expect Netanyahu's Likud to win – and I wanted it to win in the Israeli parliamentary elections.



Off-topic: solar eclipse will arrive to Europe on Friday morning. An animated map shows the eclipse will be total at an Atlantic Ocean path avoiding the Eastern beaches of Greenland; partial in much of Europe.

The country isn't necessarily living at an unprecedented time – every moment is "special" in some way. However, the present may be dangerous enough, with the Iranian nuclear bomb on the horizon and indications that the government of the most important ally is effectively ready to abandon Israel as a growing portion of the left-wing politicians start to view the alliance with Israel as a partisan issue.

Those are obvious reasons to re-elect the existing prime minister whose positions were rather clear and who was doing his job very well, as far as I can say.



Czechs can't view this variation of the Moldau as an alien song – especially because the lyrics is based on the same simple land-centered theme as the Czech anthem.

The way how the Israeli polls were covered by the Western mainstream media up to this very morning was another example of these journalists' dishonesty. We were bombarded by speculations about the end of the Netanyahu era who was poised to lose. And even hours ago, the results were said to be "neck-to-neck", a tie, and so on. Sorry but there has never been a good basis for similar claims; the victory was as sound as most of the victories that are considered sound elsewhere.




Netanyahu is actually likely to move the coalition to the right. He isn't a fan of the two-state solution of the Palestinian problem and certain people view it as the end of the world. But it's not. There are alternatives, including expulsion of the Israel-incompatible Arab population under some conditions or others.




Many early Zionists did consider the two-state solution acceptable. But the times are changing. We must understand that they were planning – or dreaming about – these things after some 2500 years in which the Jews were denied the right to possess any territory at all. So they were modest. They didn't really know for sure whether Israel would be a success. They didn't know whether it could secure friendship with the Arabs in the area.

The answer of the last 60+ years is that Israel is a great success; it is viable; but it does need teeth because too many of the Arabs – and other Muslims in the region (and even non-Muslims at many places of the world, the so-called anti-Semites) – remain hostile to the very existence of the Jewish state. All these new data are reasons to become bolder, at least when it comes to the modest pieces of the historical Jewish land that Israel has supervised for many decades by now.

Israel is a civilized and reasonably wealthy country that is ready to make a generous "deal" as long as it makes sense – as long as it guarantees a sufficiently large and sufficiently safe territory for Jews to live in the way that is natural from their point of view. It could pay compensations for the emigration to the Palestinian Arabs and do other things. But to give up a piece of land that will be immediately used as a weapon to fight against the rest of Israel is obviously not a wise "solution".

I often hear that the Czech Republic is a small country. Interestingly, I almost never hear it about Israel even though it is 4+ times smaller than Czechia. Why? Because way too many people think that the only right size of Israel is zero. Sorry, I beg to differ. It's crazy for a nation to be as important as the Jews to possess a territory that is so much smaller than the territory controlled by other, comparable (and perhaps less important) nations such as Czechs, Hungarians, or Croats.

Greece: reparations and the finger

The Greeks are excited about hostile ideas that they should get some new obscene amounts of money from Germany as reparations from the Second World War. The happiness with which they combine this newly born meme with their liquidity and solvency problems shows that they have no taste and the very plan to reopen some disagreements that led to the worst war in the history so far betrays their complete irresponsibility.

These disagreements are something that sensible people want to keep in the bottle. We are certainly keeping it in the bottle in Central Europe. For all of us in this civilized region of Europe, the topic of the reparations and compensations after the war has been geschlossen and this fact is very important for our healthy relationships.

As you might expect, the proposal to urge Germany to pay reparations to Greece is opposed by the German government but you find German politicians – in the green party and the sufficiently similar corners of SPD, too – who are ready to endorse arbitrarily insane ideas as long as they sound left-wing enough.

Sometimes the Greeks only want to be paid something comparable to 10 billion euros – which would obviously make no difference in their medium-term and long-term financial problems. (Greece talks about its ability to confiscate a German archaeological building, or ludicrously unimportant yet amazingly hostile things like that.) Some of them would love to make a difference and they talk about amounts that are higher by an order of magnitude.

The main problem is that many other countries (most of Europe, in fact, plus places outside Europe) have suffered under the Nazis, too. Germany wouldn't have a similar problem with the other PIGS countries because most of them were Germans' fascist comrades. ;-) But Germany could have huge problems e.g. with Russia if the reparation lawsuits were reopened. It seems totally obvious to me that the legitimacy of the Greek claims and the Russian claims is pretty much the same.

And the Russian communist deputies who demand the reparations to be reopened want something like $4 trillion; the cost of reunification of Germany was just $2 trillion over 20 years. If Germany started to pay lots of money to Greece, it would make it a matter of basic justice that Germany has to pay about 10 times higher amount to Russia, too. And to others. I assure you that even if this virus of reparation claims got out of control and spread in dozens of countries, Czechia wouldn't be among them. We 1) feel that despite all the bad things that Germany did to us, the final post-war setup wasn't so bad, after all, 2) remember that Czechs were no angels during the war, either, 3) we may be worried that our demands or cheekiness could turn against us, 4) we simply have a sufficient (and sometimes excessive) respect to our German neighbors. The world would be a better place if other nations saw the things from a similar perspective as my nation, I believe.

But it is not hard to see how many divisive, emotional arguments would be raised if this talk were reopened. Let me stick to the Czech-German example because I am not really afraid of it – we like the thick line these days. But 300,000 Czechoslovak citizens were killed during the war due to the German Nazism. It sounds like a very, very big number and could be used as an argument against Germany. A problem with that – one that may be immediately raised – is that 90% of these casualties were Jews and they're not "the same demos" as the dominant population in the current Czechia or Slovakia. So why should the "pure" Czechs and Slovaks of the present be rewarded for those Jewish deaths? And you know, this complaint is morally true, too. Arguments would inevitably polarize the opinions (not in this situation of ours but in others).

It's right to kill all this talk before it's too late.

Another source of Greek-German tensions is a vastly overrated event. In a May 2013 seminar, the Greek finance minister Varoufuckis gave the finger to Germany as he was saying that it would be better to "stick the finger to Germany", default within the Eurozone, and demand that Germany solves all the problems.

First of all, some Greek diplomats were trying to say that the video was fake or doctored. This is complete rubbish. You may easily see that this is how he normally talks. It's what the temperament of the Southern nations normally does. There isn't the tiniest sign of doctoring in the video and there is no reason for that. The recording is pretty cheap and to doctor it in a convincing way would cost much more money than what was paid to record it. (A German presenter now claims that the gesture in the video was doctored by his folks in February 2015. Plausible but it's also plausible – and in the opinion of mine and many others, more likely – that this doctoring claim and the polite video accompanying it is fake. I don't really care. Update Thursday: ZDF indeed admitted that the admission of doctoring was fake, and the polite version of the video was fake, and the original video does contain the finger and is real LOL. Another reason to be nearly certain that the finger was there is that the video with the finger was posted on SkriptaTV, the YouTube channel of the conference organizers. Why would they use a video doctored by German TV folks?)

(Czech ex-prime minister Topolánek as well as finance minister Kalousek and top singer Karel Gott and lots of others have used the obscene gesture at some point. Topolánek explained it when he said that he was just signalling "you are the #1, Mr Kalousek" LOL.)

But I think that the content of the seminar is much more toxic than the gesture involving the finger – which an average Greek does more than once a day, I believe. It's still the same idea that it's the "others" who are responsible for all the problems and who are obliged to solve everything and pay for that. Sorry, the world can't work like that, Marxist scumbags, and because Greece tried to impose these "rules" internally, Greece became a failed state. You have devoured your future and no one else may be blamed for the bulk of it. It wasn't everything bad. You will live in misery for many years – but you have lived through the golden times, too. You can't have both. To move some of the luxury from the future to the present is what the loans mean!

And every individual, company, or nation has to be responsible for its acts and enjoy the consequences. It's simply not possible for someone "at the top" to be always there to adopt all the sins and debts of others and solve everything. Communism or the superstitious heaven may work like that but the real world of humans can't.

Letter to Iran

Almost 50 senators have sent a letter to Iran that says what should have been said. The power in the U.S. is divided and the executive power may only make decisions that may be reverted as soon as another president is elected (which may be a Republican, but even a Democrat may decide to stop the arrangements that the Obama administration made).

If some decisions fail to be approved by the U.S. Congress, by the legislative part of the government, they simply shouldn't be expected to last when the president is out of office. That's how democracy works! The people are able to control their lives by electing their representatives – lawmakers – who may define and redefine the limits in which the executive power may operate. Obama without the U.S. Congress simply cannot bind America by some eternal regulations in the long run.

Some (usually far left) pundits have called the senators "traitors" and invented lots of insane criticism of the letter. For example, this Huffington Post rant said that "Democrats and some academics say the letter undermines Obama's — and future presidents' — ability to set foreign policy." Sorry but it's good that "just the president" – whether he is a Democrat or a Republican – can't change and set foreign policy forever. We usually say that it's because he is not a dictator and because the U.S. is a democracy. It's a good thing that he can't do that, not a bad thing! The president may either "inspire" the lawmakers and make decisions that will affect future generations; or he (or Hillary) must live with the fact that his decisions only apply to his term or two terms.

Victory Day parade in Moscow

Aside from Putin, the leaders who will attend should include the presidents of Czechia and Slovakia along with: China, North Korea, Cuba... Are we in a good company? OK, it sounds too cruel, there may also be Cyprus etc. but the absence of most of the Western countries will probably be obvious. I think it is very unfortunate, and I am happy that my president is among the brave ones who is not afraid to do the right thing.

The Soviet Union has played a very important role – and perhaps the most important role – in the defeat of the Nazis. Millions and millions of soldiers have sacrificed their lives. And on May 9th, 1945, which will be 70 years ago, the war ended on the European continent – on that day, Prague was liberated by the Red Army, too.

This victory occurred during Stalin's reign and you know, Stalin wasn't a perfect democrat and humanist, to put it really nicely, and he wasn't perfectly respectful towards other nations, either. In spite of that, the Western leaders acted as his reliable allies. Everyone who hasn't lost his mind must know that Putin is a vastly more committed democrat than Stalin. So even if Putin were not a perfect democrat or things like that, it simply cannot be a reason to stick the finger to the Soviet soldiers who did their hard work, made huge sacrifices, and succeeded. The Russian government is the main and perhaps the only government in today's world that identifies itself with those soldiers.

It is very clear that the actual reason why some people want to stick the finger to Russia is that their reasoning is built in the same way as the reasoning of the Nazis. So nations who don't send their leaders to Moscow in May 2015: be ashamed, you are piles of fascist crap.

Add to del.icio.us Digg this Add to reddit

snail feedback (83) :


reader Fernando Leanme said...

Long term, Netanyahu is lousy for Israel. Those 47 Likhud Senators who signed the letter showed who controls whom. I agree with you on the Greek drama. Syriza has solid communist credentials (I heard from a venezuelan source they got money from Chávez), and we see communists surging everywhere trying to defend them. Right now it's fashionable to be anti Russian. But that's the result of a massive propaganda campaign associated with a USA neocon drive to domesticate the Russian bear.


reader MikeNov said...

Netanyahu himself said that the race was tight, he could lose. It looks like his last minute campaigning turned things around, as people understood the risk was too great.


Obama personally sent his top campaign people to organize against Netanyahu in Israel.


reader HenryBowman419 said...

Regarding the letter "sent" to Iran: my understanding is that it was not actually sent, but simply posted on the website of Sen. Tom Cotton. And, it really created a tempest in a teapot. It seems that lots of lefties simply went bonkers, demanding that all 47 Senators be prosecuted under the Logan Act, an act signed into law in 1799 and under which no one has ever been prosecuted.


reader BMWA1 said...

Isn't that against the law?


reader Ann said...

Pretty amusing that Obama's reason for not meeting with Netanyahu was bcz he did not want to appear to be influencing the upcoming Israeli election, when it's now quite clear that he through proxies very much wanted to influence its outcome. The Saudis are signing a nuclear deal with South Korea, apparently. Isn't this a step in a new arms race in the mideast - they are nervous about Iran's potential bomb capability. When Israel has made big concessions to the Palestinians, it never has led to peace. I don't understand how any civilized moral person can hate Israel and prefer their enemies in the neighborhood there.


reader Uncle Al said...

If Iran were given Czechoslovakia for Lebensraum, they would be satisfied and thereafter non-aggressive. It is our every hope and expectation that Secretary of Intestate John Kerry can achieve peace for our time. Kerry is every bit the far seeing, adroit statesman that was Neville Chamberlain. Barack Obama could transform a golden goose into a hen's egg.

Admittedly Czechoslovakia would need to be reassembled, and about 3000 Jews rounded up, again (Prague, Brno, Decin, Karlovy Vary, Liberec, Ostrava, Olomouc, Plzen, Teplice and Usti nad Labem). Theresienstadt? No problem, then or now.


reader QsaTheory said...

This is the origin of the story of the 47

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ps-v2NkoNVg


reader davideisenstadt said...

nah...they were organizing for a change in government, not against netenyahu..so it was all okay.
sure.


reader fsdfsdf said...

Lubos, even the Mossad and the CIA said that Iran is FAAAR from having a nuclear weapon.


reader BMWA1 said...

Didn't the Germans have their own special parade in Moscow in July 1944? Maybe Merklova could make it to the 79th anniversary of that one?


reader Isabelle Isaac said...

If Iran were given Czechoslovakia for Lebensraum, they would be pleased and thereafter non-aggressive. It is our every wish and anticipations that Assistant of Intestate David Kerry can accomplish serenity for our time. Kerry is every bit the far seeing, adroit statesman that was Neville Chamberlain. Barack Barack obama could convert a fantastic goose into a hen's egg.




Spybubble


reader papertiger0 said...

Sounds like a violation of the Logan Act to me ;)


reader Rehbock said...

Mostly I agree. However, I don't appreciate those who undermine our President overseas though. We have elected him. Foreign policy matters are within the job we elected him too. Senators are not to speak for us in these cases. It is bad enough that other nations may interpret words of one person two or more ways to the detriment of peace. 100 senators each can be interpreted differently with grave consequences.


reader Rehbock said...

No. The Act only applies to those not authorized. As president is his authority.


reader papertiger0 said...

What is your opinion on Secretaries of State using easily hacked unsecured servers for delicate overseas negotiations, exchange of confidential documents, information, secrets of foreign allies and foes. Or the transmission of spoof messages of third party actors impersonating the Secretary?


reader papertiger0 said...

Obama's overt covert campaign cretins, Obama mercenaries if you will, do not equal presidential authority.
We have a State Department for those things.
Nobody vetted, confirmed, or elected, Obama activists.


reader papertiger0 said...

I tried to get a visual aid for "sticking the finger" off of Bing.

This was what binged up. Not quite what Lubos meant but still useful.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OpDOuaFM0HQ


reader davideisenstadt said...

my favorite cankles quote?
"we came we saw, he died" wow...things in Libya are so much better now.


reader mesocyclone said...

The "traitor" label coming from Democrats is remarkably hypocritical. John Kerry, the current secretary of state, and former collaborator with the US enemy in Vietnam, visited with the leaders of communist Nicaragua as soon as Kerry was elected Senator.

So the Republicans send a public letter warning an enemy and they are "traitors."

But a Democrat hob-nobs with a communist enemy, and it's okay?


reader mesocyclone said...

So did you raise your voice against John Kerry when, as newly elected Senator, he visited with the Nicaraguan communists, who were enemies of the US?

I thought not.


reader papertiger0 said...

It's time for me to defend our President.

Lubos says Obama is a Nazi because he isn't showing up for the Russian Victory day, and that this is a protest based on animus between Barry and Vlad the Crimean invader.

Well at least Barry gave Vladimir a phonecall when Putin won the election for President of Russia.

http://hotair.com/archives/2015/03/18/white-house-refusing-to-congratulate-netanyahu-on-win/


reader Tony said...

What bothers me is that, at the time, Netanyahu was saying that war with Iraq would bring stability to the region.


I wasn't strongly opposed to war until I understood that evidence for weapons of mass destruction was phony and that my tax dollars are now used for 'nation building'.


I would hate to see variation on the similar theme.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear papertiger,


I've never said that Obama was a "Nazi". The word "Nazi" refers to the particular German form of fascism they had around 1940 - plus those who identify themselves with its heritage and idiosyncrasies.


Yes, Obama is a trained Muslim, a trained communist, a clueless politician when it comes to foreign affairs, and a harmful yet ultimately inconsequential person when it comes to Israel.


The fact he didn't congratulate Netanyahu is extremely painful, too.


LM


reader Luboš Motl said...

Well, I am not an agent of either Mossad or CIA so I obviously don't have to parrot what they say.


reader Luboš Motl said...

LOL, do you treat this whole comment of yours including the "history" behind it as a joke?

Germans have never reached Moscow - they tried but they heavily failed at the end of 1941 and early 1942

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Moscow



and in July 1944, the Third Reich was already losing places rather close to Berlin, too.


LM


reader papertiger0 said...

Not a "Nazi" but still a fascist!

I stand corrected.

But my sense of patriotism still compells me to defend the President.

When you say Obama is a well trained communist, I disagree.
He isn't very well trained. Obama is a scattered, indiscriminate, unreconstructed communist.

;)


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear papertiger, I appreciate your patriotism and see no urgent urge, desire, or need to argue with you. ;-)


reader BMWA1 said...

What about the good cheer a jocosity shown during this triumphal march:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrmV0aYUYLU


reader cynholt said...

Now that the two-state fantasy is buried, the only position for supporters of democracy to take is a single state with full voting, property and legal rights for all residents of the area under Israeli control. The two state idea allowed the US and the West to support Israel for nearly fifty years, while ignoring the profoundly undemocratic nature of the state. That will no longer be possible. To support Israel from now on will mean supporting an apartheid regime, and that will be come impossible. A Jewish state might have once been possible, but that day has past - thanks to fanatics like Netanyahu.

It's also worth noting that the one-state solution is the official position of the Islamic Republic of Iran - pending the outcome of plebiscite to determine the form of the government.

In practice, it could be modeled after South Africa: a two-stage constitutional arrangement, with an interim constitution followed by elections and a new constitution.


reader davideisenstadt said...

Yet we know we sold WMDs to hussein, and we can prove it, because we kept the receipts, and trained his military, and documented their use on the kurds and iranians.
The NYT reported that scores of US military members were injured handling and disposing of chemical warheads and stockpiles of WMDs found hidden in iraq...
Iraq didn't use them? we didn't sell the stuff to hussein, and train his people?
The NYT was lying when it reported on the injuries suffered by the US military?
Cant have it both ways, you know.


reader davideisenstadt said...

in short, yes.


reader davideisenstadt said...

The russians returned the favor in berlin in 1945, no?


reader Luboš Motl said...

Oh I see. ;-)


reader BMWA1 said...

I think that was from Operation Bagration, when the Allies did not believe the CCCP about the prisoners bagged from Army Group Center (nobody seems to trust them which must be annoying when they are telling the truth). At the end of the operation, in Eastern Poland in the second stage of the advance, the troops of Rokossovsky started Th.e liberation of the concentration camps. These are the camps that were not actually liberated according to some recent PL poodle politicos, who seem to think it was the UPA.


reader QsaTheory said...

From what I read is that the Israel(right and left[if there is such a thing]) think they cal have a Jewish state with Arabs on reservation like territories.

Let me tell you a story. When I has in the US as a student in UNM Albuquerque barely 20(1975) there was this radio station very powerful heard all over the area. They were discussing the ME issues at one time with live call in. Since most of the callers were pro Israel so I called to balance the debate.

Then the radio phoned me and tolled me to call this man who wants to speak to me, so I did. He invited to me to a meeting(with dinner) in a hotel, so I agreed. He took me to the meeting and told me that he is a scientist at the famous Los Alamos labratory(atomic Bomb) and he is working on "vectorising" a nuclear rocket.

The meeting was so surreal. about 10-15 people in a conference room discussing nothing but once and a while people would talk about senator Jackson( McCain of those days) and how great he is and his support for Israel. That is it , the subject of the meeting, surreal.


On the way back as I explained the conflict to him he sounded apologetic as the situation was an outcome of WWII. This big shot scientist was so gullible, are Americans so too. Cynthia, can you explain to me this irrational support, and do you think the video bellow is a reason or not.


reader cynholt said...

The Christian Zionists are a huge and obvious problem, Q' Theory, but it is simply absurd to claim that they are the driving force behind DC’s pro-Israel bias. Jews are the financial engine of the Democratic party, and increasingly the Republican party as well. You'd be hard pressed to find a Christian equivalent to Sheldon Adelson or Haim Saban.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/billionaires-adelson-and-saban-at-odds-in-campaigns-unite-on-israel-and-hit-obama/2014/11/09/92a40f68-6835-11e4-b053-65cea7903f2e_story.html

It's a near certainty that whenever Netanyahu addresses Congress, the Democrats will applaud just as much as the Republicans, it will resemble the Politburo groveling before Stalin.

Bottom line: AIPAC has a hell of a lot more than 47 useful idiots in the US Congress. It’s closer to 535.


reader QsaTheory said...

Yes, see my example of manipulation in my post above. The 10 years or so I spent in the US the Americans in general are nice people, but they gullible and more politically so. the TV has a tremendous hold on them.


reader davideisenstadt said...

The surreal part of it is that you, a guest in our country, received an education you couldn't have gotten in your country of origin, and were allowed to speak your mind, free of oppression and abuse, unlike virtually anyone living in the arab world today. Yet you seem not to have learned a thing from that experience.
When arab citizens and stateless residents of arab countries have a fraction of the civil rights and protections that islamic citizens of israel have, come back to the table and talk.
The base of the likud party is formed of jews who were forced to leave islamic states in the area...jordan, syria, lebanon, yemen, iran, iraq, and on and on.
they know and understand exactly what they are dealing with there...


reader Rehbock said...

why did you think not?
Kerry is no different. Senators right and left are without difference in such matters. They seem to forget that it is not about them.


reader Rehbock said...

Email is obviously unsuited to diplomacy and politics. They should never send anything on or even store any secret even near the internet.


reader cynholt said...

Americans have to stop electing the unintelligent to high office. We have the Affirmative Action administration in power now and they’ve brought us to the brink of a nuclear war. And before this fiasco, we had the Trust Fund administration that wasted thousands of lives and billions of dollars on unnecessary wars. The system appears to be in deep trouble.


reader cynholt said...

Is there any example in world history of a relationship similar to the US-Israeli relationship? A tiny little country exercises enormous influence on the foreign policy of a continent straddling superpower many times its size and power on the other side of the globe. I think historians centuries from now looking back on this relationship will be utterly stunned.


reader QsaTheory said...

I was a guest in the US the same way as many American companies operate in my country, mutual benefits for good, not for evil.


Israel as the video(endless on the web) show how these christian Zionist which are like ISIS with literal interpretation of the Bible has pushed to fulfill the prophecy so that the second Christ comes converts the Jews to Christianity and kill the ones that don't.


State of Israel was created long time before Jews left Arab countries which their numbers but a fraction of European Jews, and wasn't the Europeans who killed 6000000 Jews. Did the Arab do that Even After the heinous act of stealing Palestine and kicking their people out.


A lot of the Arab Jews have good memories and keep some affinity to the original cultures and they are mostly hated by the white Jews.


reader Shannon said...

Netanyahu is a caveman with a bludgeon. His voice sounds like a sewage regurgitation. Music to israelians' ears I guess.


reader Gene Day said...

Of course the Iraq war brought instability and such things as the emergence of ISIS. It could have been otherwise but only if we had been willing to occupy Iraq for a couple of decades and actually bring about reconciliation of the Sunnis and the Shiites.
This would have cost additional trillions and the political will in the US just wasn’t there.
“Nation Building” is possible but it is horrendously expensive. I don’t want my tax dollars used for it either, Tony.


reader Gene Day said...

Yes, he certainly should have telephoned Netanyahu.
I do disagree with everything else in your second paragraph, however, my friend.


reader Gene Day said...

Hasn’t Israel always had to choose between land and peace? They can’t have it both ways either. I am very encouraged that Israel has signed a big contract to sell natural gas to Egypt. Doing business together is the best way to insure peace.
Regarding Iran, that nation is slowly moving in the right direction. It is about as free and open as China today and about as civilized (and corrupt).
My wife and I have a friend who was in the Shah’s security service, the most despised group at the time of the revolution. He barely escaped with his life; he would have been shot if they had caught him. For decades he could not return to Iran but now he travels freely between the US and Iran. He was and is a Shah supporter and the clerics know that.
The election of the moderate Rouhani does represent a fundamental shift in Iranian politics. We need to encourage that movement; it could still be reversed.


reader Ann said...

It's so good that you remind us about the history. So many people now seem to think Iraq was a stable, happy place before 2003. If one goes back and reads the news from that era, everyone assumed that Saddam had WMD, they just disagreed about how best to contain his regime, e.g., to prevent him from another march on Kuwait or other neighbor. The no-fly zone was on-going, very expensive and resulted in civilian casualties and anger from the locals, the sanctions against Saddam's regime were hardships on the Iraqis, the oil for money program was very corrupt, there were dozens of UN resolutions condemning Saddam, they just wouldn't give Bush the final blessing to do the war. I was surprised when he went ahead with it, and would not have done it then. But the situation there was unstable and might have led to war a year or two later anyway. During the no-fly zone era, a long article in New Yorker described how Al Quaeda was freely moving in the desert north of the no-fly zone and setting up military camps. I worked with an Iraqi at a tech firm in 2003 and he loved Bush for going afterr Saddam, he said Saddam was a true monster, hated and feared by the majority.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Israel may have peace with Egypt, and your doing business with Iran may bring peace between the Islamic Republic and the U.S.


But those relationships don't imply peace between Israel and Iran, do they?


reader Shannon said...

You seem to be in favour of preventive wars, Ann? Saddam Hussein was a true monster but did you ask your Iraqi friend what he thinks of the new guys in charge ? Are they nicer ? Unitestatians have a Manichean view of the world. I guess the Hollywoodian cinema industry has been playing a big role in this. There is another way of dealing with foreign affairs and conflicts, it is called Diplomacy.


reader Gene Day said...

No, Shannon, he is just doing what any politician would do under the circumstances. His election is less than a tragedy in the long-term picture. I was neither surprised nor disappointed by his victory; it will be seen as a blip in the long run. There are much bigger things at play in the Levant.
Look, Israel is a reality and will remain so. Israel is protected by our nuclear umbrella; everyone knows that. That does not mean that the US automatically supports Israel’s government in all of it’s actions for we surely do not.
What the US needs as a country is a stable balance of power such that no one can afford to attack anyone else.
This is true for Israel and her neighbors as well as for the three major powers in the middle east, Turkey, Iran and Saudi Arabia. It applies also to the Ukraine and to the Shiite-Sunni schism. It also applies as well to the south China Sea, another potential conflict arena. It applies, too, to the India-Pakistan standoff and to various other situations where open war could arise.


reader Rehbock said...

The authority of the president is by his power U.S Const. Article II.. Authority of senators to act for this country is not in the constitution.


reader Richard Warren said...

I'm usually not inclined to see ethnic bigotry in mere political invective, but your post suggesting that the man is less than fully human (a caveman) and like sewage actually does seem reminiscent of Nazi antisemitic propaganda (of the "Jews are subhuman filfth" variety-isn't that what you are implying about this particular Jew and by extension the "israelians" who like him?). Did you come up with this stuff yourself?


reader Fer137 said...

The arab-palestinian leader and the holocaust:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haj_Amin_al-Husseini#The_Holocaust

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haj_Amin_al-Husseini#Al-Husseini.27s_attempts_to_block_Jewish_refugees

They have a great responsibility in the holocaust, and incomprehensibly almost nobody talks about it. ( I did not read about it until a few months ago)


reader QsaTheory said...

I know by now you are very good at changing subject, so you resort to some obscure issue of no value whatsoever. Read the article carefully and you will see that it works against you. This is what is in it

"and it seems unlikely that the Nazis needed any such additional encouragement from the outside"

I have a better one

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


reader papertiger0 said...

Sending Joe Biden, John Kerry, the CIA, or even the Marines is one thing. Sending Organize for America Obama pimps and Acorn to community activist the Israelis is something else entirely.


He basicly sent the bottom feeding scum of America to mao mao one of our best allies.


reader davideisenstadt said...

the large influx of sephardic jews occurred contemporaneously with the formation of the state of israel, the only difference between the half million or so sephardic and the islamic refugees from israel is the sephardic weren't kept in refugee camps for generations by arab states.
yeah, yemeni jews, who had liven in yemen for thousands of years just got up and fled willingly.
thers a reason the israeli left is dominated by jews who are the descendants of european jews...they dont and haven lived with camel pee drinking maniacs like the sephardic have...the backers of likud understand the islamic states they are surrounded buy, and harbor no illusions about their polices beliefs and aims.


reader davideisenstadt said...

they may not have needed the encouragement, but like the french , islamic people in the region certainly helped the nazis.
An inconvenient truth.


reader QsaTheory said...

The Palestinian being threatened by some strangers taking over their country they would ask anybody's help.


The majority of the Islamic countries are allies of your country.


reader QsaTheory said...

You are contradicting yourself, Yemenis Jews lived thousands of years, then they know their "aims". Got a better logic!


reader davideisenstadt said...

yeah.like the climate in the region hasn't changed? like the sephardi in yemen were safe?
You should at least be honest to yourself, if you can't bring yourself to be honest with others.
sad.


reader davideisenstadt said...

my country is the United Staes, and I dont see the middle east that way. sorry.


reader QsaTheory said...

You don't, you government does, that what counts.


reader QsaTheory said...

The US government did the same with french and the Japanese. Besides Israel encouraged such emigration, you know that but you don't want to be honest with yourself. very sad.


reader RAF III said...

Rehbock - Under the first amendment, everyone in the U.S. has the right to put an open letter, explaining the Constitution, on their website.
Senators, having taken a statutorily required oath to support and defend the Constitution (https://www.senate.gov/reference/reference_index_subjects/Oath_vrd.htm), may feel obligated to do so.
The current president has taken an oath (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oath_of_office_of_the_President_of_the_United_States ), required by the Constitution, to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution; he has violated that oath on numerous occassions.


reader davideisenstadt said...

well, a preventive war might have saved a few hundred thousand american boys' lives, as well a thirty to fifty million lives in europe last century.
Of course since you guys surrendered, there really wasnt much of a war in france, until we came, of course...just you french and your nazi co-conspirators, rounding up jewish kids and killing them, and your proud people working for and producing for the german way machine. A happy couple, i suppose.


reader Rehbock said...

The Logan Act states that persons without authority may not negotiate or speak with foreign governments in disputes with our government. Everyone has a right to put an open letter up. However, if the letter asserts to be official or take positions for the United States that could affect our national interests in a manner interfering with negotiations, it is also not protected speech and may be punished as surely as such a letter were it to threaten terrorism.


reader RAF III said...

Rehbock - The Senators did not commence or carry on any correspondence or intercourse with the Iranian government - they did not attempt to negotiate - they spoke. No court would ever say did otherwise, even if some prosecutor was foolish enough to bring charges. The letter did not assert a postition of the government on anything other than the Constitution. Likewise, there was no violation of separation of powers. Accusations of treason are risible.
First you claimed the letter was a usurpation of authority under the Constitution. Then you claimed it was a violation of the Logan Act. You're flailing.
I'm afraid it is you who is 'not knowledgeable of our values or legal system and unqualified'. But take heart! You are as great a legal scholar as Barack Obama.
You disapprove of their actions. I get it.
But stop making shit up.


reader davideisenstadt said...

like the governemts of egypt, iraq, lebanon, syria ,jordan, and the rest didn't "encourage" jews to leave?
Taquiyya? yeah its right here for all of us to read.
many westerners are familiar with the term
here we call people like that lying motherfuckers.


reader davideisenstadt said...

well, when iraq saw kuwait as being a part of their country, the arab world had no problem with our government.
The house of saud, installed by those fans of buggery, the brits, have no problems with their nation state...
The emirates, quatar...none of those entities doubt their legitimacy. All products of the british and the french carving up the defeated ottoman empire.
they're all rump republics.
a quarter of a million syrians are dead...copts are crucified by IS, not a sound from you.
The day that church bells are heard in saudi aria on sunday mornings is the day you will have a right to make any comment on freedom nd respect of cultures.
islamic citizens of israel have more rights than the hundreds of millions of islamic people in the rest of the middle east.
Its sad that islamic people depend on the jew for their freedom, isn't it.
you are a liar, hypocrite a shill.


reader QsaTheory said...

"islamic citizens of israel have more rights"



Israel takes over their homeland and gives them more "rights", very generous of them!


reader davideisenstadt said...

Better than the governments of any other country in the middle east.
get over it. When the world can hear church bells wringing in Saudi Arabia, then you have a right to bleat and complain. Until then you should count your blessings that this country allowed you to come as a guest and gave you an education that your own culture was incapable if giving you.
The Kuwaitis didn't complain about being carved out of Iraq, now did they...nor did they spend much of their lucre on the poor of that part of the world, nor do any countries in that neck of the world give anything close to the respect and rights that are given to citizens of israel.
As for taking land... when you fight a war and you lose...when you pick the wrong side in WW2 and you lose, you lose....why dont you ask the residents of what used to be called Danzig, in Germany, now called Gdansk, in Poland how they felt about things..
Why dont you consider that Germany took in over a half million refugees from parts of Germany lost to Poland after WW2?
You back hitler, you lose four or five wars, you "enjoy" the fruits of a backward, violent abusive culture, as arab citizens of the world are finding out. Enjoy your spring, Qsa.


reader Ann said...

I said I would not have done what Bush did in 2003, if you read it. I was only speculating that war might have erupted later in some unforeseen way and that the situation with no-fly zone, etc., was not going to be sustainable indefinitely.


reader Shannon said...

I would say the same of my own president Hollande so, please, stop your queer-like reaction to any criticism concerning a jew. Grow up. Maybe this interview of the good and courageous jews and rabbis, anti sionists, will calm you down or make you scream in horror... which ever way I do not care : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pVlDzSDcZM


reader cynholt said...

Yes, I can see how Netanyahu could easily pass as a club-waving, cave-dwelling Neanderthal engaging in nasty guttural talk straight out a sewer, Shannon.

It seems to me that many US Zionists were hoping for a more PR friendly face for Israel and its policies as opposed to Netanyahu's Chicago boss alderman schtick. The policies would be no different, just the new-and-improved personality which would allow Israel to buy another five years or so.


reader cynholt said...

What is so demeaning or bigoted about calling someone a caveman, Richard? Recall that it was the early humans who had enough intelligence and perseverance to survive the rather tortuous trek out of Africa to become what were known as the cavemen to the North. Most, if not all, Caucasians are descendants of the caveman. Now had Shannon called Netanyahu a knuckle-dragging or a lazy porch monkey, then I can see how you might think she was describing him as "less than fully human." If there is any group of people who are falling behind the curve in terms of human evolution, it is those who stayed behind in Africa, not the ones who successfully made their way out of Africa.

And I don't see how you can describe Shannon as a bigot against Jews just because she likened Netanyahu's pie hole to regurgitating sewage. The sights and sounds of regurgitating sewage aren't confined to the Jewish population. The stench of backed-up sewage can found all sorts of human populations. We have ours, they have theirs. Jews are no different in that respect.


reader Luboš Motl said...

Dear Cynthia, you don't believe yourself that your labels "caveman" and "Neanderthal" are not offensive.


They surely are because these groups of early humans were uncivilized in the usual sense of "civilization", they are extinct today - and that's indeed what hardcore anti-Semites like you want to do with the Jews as well - and in the case of Neanderthals, they were not even the same species as the humans - which is how Nazis like you want the Jews to be viewed, too.


Your attitude to the Jews has been on trial in Nuremberg and if you want to revive it, there should be new trials for you, too.


reader papertiger0 said...

Breaking a Decades long trend The World Gets More Violent

The spike in violence appears part of a broader multi-year trend. Research published last year by the Australia and US-based Institute for Economics and Peace showed a steady decline in world peace and rise in conflict related violence every year since 2007, bucking a multi-decade improvement since the end of World War II.

https://a.disquscdn.com/uploads/mediaembed/images/1850/833/original.jpg?w=480&h


reader papertiger0 said...

The sob's have the nerve to blame it on global warming.
Tell you what. If I had the money to be really independant. Do anything I wanted. I'd travel the world visiting each and every one of these Reuter's type reporters using global warming as an excuse for what is the obvious stupidity of leftist leaders, and kick them right in the slates.
Just ring the bell.
When they answer, "Are you Peter Apps?" I'd ask.
"Why yes I am."
Kick em right in the cahonies.
"Have a bad day." I'd say, as I flip them the bird, and went on my way to visit the next one.


reader Just a thought said...

How uncivilized. The leader of the only country in the M.E. that treats all it's citizens like human beings refuses to submit to thuggery and be bullied into committing national suicide. What an awful person. //sarc//

I have no doubt you hold the egalitarian leader of the palestinian Arabs in higher regard?


reader Just a thought said...

Rational criticism is always welcom. Lies and "Blood Libels" are not.


reader Just a thought said...

Lead investigator in search for WMD, David Kay, said that "Iraq May Have Been 'Far More Dangerous' Than Believed...".

And it doesn't matter what we know now, if we didn't know it then. Besides, there were plenty of reasons why Saddam had to go, without invoking Nukes, which he never gave up hope of acquiring,btw.

And, yes, Saddam really did have WMD.


reader Richard Warren said...

When I replied to your initial post I did not realize that you are French. Now I know better than to attach any significance to your remarks.