Friday, April 09, 2004

Certifiably Insane
Fasten yer seatbelts. Here's a trip around cyberspace for worthwhile news and commentary bits, presented in no particular order.

Many people in Britain understand what we do not about Iraq, because of their nation's experiences imposing colonialism on other people--some of them in the Middle East. The Guardian spells it out: "This revolt shows every sign of turning into Iraq's own intifada, and towns like Falluja and Ramadi--centres of resistance from the first days of occupation--are now getting the treatment Israel has meted out to Palestinians in Jenin, Nablus and Rafah over the past couple of years. . . . Across Iraq, US soldiers and their European allies are now killing Iraqis in their hundreds on the streets of their own cities in an explosive revival of the Middle East's imperial legacy."

From syndicated columnist Ted Rall: "Read and understand: They hate us simply because we're there. Leave, and the hatred goes away. If you doubt that, visit Hanoi as a tourist."

From journalist Jim Lobe on Daniel Pipes, who wants to become the Islamic Martin Luther: "Within the United States, 'all Muslims, unfortunately, are suspect,' Pipes wrote in a recent book, which called for the authorities to be especially vigilant towards Muslims with jobs in the military, law enforcement, or diplomacy. Last year, he cited as evidence of this insight the arrest on suspicion of espionage of Muslim chaplain James Yee at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility that houses hundreds of prisoners from Bush's 'war on terrorism'. The Yee case later fell apart."

From ZNet, Jonathan Schell on the hollowness of the phrase "On June 30, the Coalition will hand over sovereignty to the Iraqi people." Schell says: "There is no 'sovereign,' American or other, in this Iraq; there is anarchy. The less 'sovereignty' the United States possesses, it appears, the more quickly it wants to surrender it."

TomPaine.Com blogger Robert Dreyfuss: "An establishment, bipartisan elite must emerge to order the bumbling president out of Iraq, now. Protests won’t do it, nor reason. Passionate speeches, even the best ones, such as Robert Byrd’s April 7, won’t do it. President Bush’s Iraq policy is now certifiably criminally insane, and only a soft coup d’etat, a la 1968, can stop him."

(Byrd's speech is magnificently old school, a throwback to the days when every school kid memorized the great poems of the English language, like "The Charge of the Light Brigade." I can't decide whether it loses some of its rhetorical power because people don't know the poem anymore, or if it gains because people rarely hear language like that coming out of the mouths of politicans anymore.)

And finally, on a lighter note, the World's Smartest Human explains why Miller beer is contraindicated for all refreshment applications.

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