.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}
Heavy-Handed Politics

"€œGod willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world
without the United States and Zionism."€ -- Iran President Ahmadi-Nejad

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Restore credibility to United Nations panel

Miami Herald

It seems a certainty that the discredited U.N. Human Rights Commission will be reformed, and the sooner the better. The goal should be to create an international protector and promoter of human rights, one that punishes violators and takes action before it's too late to stop genocide and crimes against humanity. Doing this, however, means departing from business-as-usual: The new panel must be insulated from politics and focused on objective standards of human rights.


In no way should the U.N. Security Council's five permanent members be assured permanent seats on the new human-rights council, as U.S. Ambassador John R. Bolton is arguing. Such a policy would promise seats to two nations with terrible human-rights records -- China and Russia. Their presence would damage the new council's credibility and defeat the purpose of the reforms in the first place.

Instead, the United States should advocate for a smaller, stronger and nimble human-rights protector that will intervene to prevent human-rights crises. Read it all here.


India, China boundary talks in Beijing from tomorrow
Hindu - Chennai,India
8 (PTI): India and China will hold two-day high-level Strategic talks in Beijing from Monday aimed at exploring ways to promote cooperation and sorting out ...

China's President Urges Corruption Fight
Houston Chronicle - United States
BEIJING -- China's ruling Communist Party called on its members Saturday to do more to fight widespread corruption and politically explosive problems such as unpaid back wages for

China to cut costs, extravagance in medical sector
Reuters AlertNet - London,England,UK
BEIJING, Jan 7 (Reuters) - China plans to stamp out wasteful medical projects and establish teams of health inspectors to raise standards of hospitals and ...

Education Minister to visit China to promote closer collaboration ...
Channel News Asia - Singapore
... on Sunday. The aim is to meet Chinese leaders and promote closer collaboration in education between Singapore and China.

China to encourage charity
Monsters and Critics.com - Glasgow,UK
BEIJING, China (UPI) -- The Chinese government plans to encourage charitable donations from businesses and rich individuals.

China uneasy as mediator on North Korea nukes
Seattle Times - United States
DANDONG, China -- Zhou Renlie marched across the Friendship Bridge spanning the Yalu River here as a teenage Chinese soldier ready to fight the Americans and ...

Ministry: China to increase aid to Africa
Xinhua - China
China's Ministry of Commerce says the country will expand its trade with Africa and continue the no-tariff policy on part of the imports to China from the ...

China must prevent population surge - official
Malaysia Star - Malaysia
BEIJING (Reuters) - China faces a population surge in the next five years and the government will enforce "one-child" policies to keep the country's numbers at ...

Ditch fantasies about China, president says
Taipei Times - Taiwan
Claiming that China is not going to change its policy toward Taiwan no matter how much goodwill Taiwan extends, President Chen Shui-bian...

China may help build more N-power plants
Pakistan Dawn - Karachi,Pakistan
ISLAMABAD, Jan 5: China is considering Pakistan's request to help it build eight more nuclear power plants at a cost of $8 billion aimed at generating 4,800 ...

Al Qaida News

Bomb plot closes UK embassy in Jordan
The Sunday Times - UK
... Counter-terrorism sources said the prime suspect was Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the Jordanian-born terrorist who is now head of Al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Iraqis blame Al-Qaida for violence
San Jose Mercury News - CA, USA
... recruiting station Thursday, they did something they had never publicly done: They blamed Al-Qaida in Iraq, the insurgent movement led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. ...

Terrorists recruiting for Iraq in Sydney
ydney Morning Herald - Sydney,New South Wales,Australia
SYDNEY supporters of al-Qaeda's leader in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, have tried to encourage Australian Muslims to join the insurgency and donate money to the ...

Former Mossad Chief Expects Palestinians to Test New Israeli Leader

Jerusalem (CNSNews.com)
– The Palestinians may try to test a new Israeli leadership by increasing terrorism, said the former head of Israel’s secret service. “It is possible that some warped minds on the Palestinian side might be tempted to test the mettle of a new Israeli leadership,” Ephraim HaLevy said. iIt would be a “grievous mistake” on their part, he added...


Heat, bushfires. Just another Australian summer, some hotter, some wetter, some cooler, some drier. As per usual, the northern hemisphere freezes and the blame game is in overdrive. At the 2005 UN Climate Change Conference in Montreal, Greenpeace's Steven Guilbeault stated: "Global warming can mean colder, it can mean drier, it can mean wetter, that's what we're dealing with." It is that simple! If it's hot, it's global warming; if it's cold, it's global warming.

Demonstrators in frigid temperatures in Montreal chanted: "It's hot in here! There's too much carbon in the atmosphere!" The same apocalyptic Guilbeault says: "Time is running out to deal with climate change. Ten years ago, we thought we had a lot of time, five years ago we thought we had a lot of time, but now science is telling us that we don't have a lot of time." Really.

Click Here For The Full Story



"Let's be clear about who's killing the Patriot Act—President Bush and the Republican Leadership. Twice last week, a Bi-partisan group of Senators tried to move forward on a three-month extension, but instead of joining us, the President and the Republican Leadership decided they would rather see the bill expire. It's time for the President to put politics aside and national security first. The President and the Republican leadership should join us in supporting the Patriot Act and protecting Americans."

--- Senator Harry Reid, (D-Searchlight)

It was only about three weeks ago Dirty Harry gleefully pronounced , "We killed the Patriot Act!" to a group of clapping supporters. See these news accounts, Drudge, The Washington Times, and The Political Teen has the video here.

O'Reilly on Letterman Show

Bill O'Reilly appeared on the David Letterman show and they had a spirited debate. O'Reilly writes about it:

David Letterman Proves Culture War Is Real
by Bill O'Reilly

Even though the war on terror dominates the headlines, the culture war in America is almost as intense. On one side you have traditionalists, people who believe the country was well-founded, does mostly good things, and has become the most powerful nation on earth by adhering to Judeo-Christian principles like generosity, justice, and self-sacrifice.

On the other side of the culture war are the secular-progressives (S-P's) who believe that the USA is fundamentally a flawed country, which has caused considerable misery both within and outside our borders. The S-P's want drastic change and a new direction for America.

The two most intense issues in the culture war right now are how to deal with terrorism and what role spirituality should play in the public arena.

The S-P's want little or no public displays of God or religion. That's what drove the attacks on Christmas images and traditions; knock down the big Christian holiday, and the secularists achieve a big victory.

On the terror front, traditionalists largely want aggressive action to wipe out the "evildoers," and if lraq is the battlefield, then so be it.

Secular-progressives are appalled by the Iraq war and generally believe the USA has no right to act unilaterally to hunt down terrorists or their enablers. Read the rest here.

Friday, January 06, 2006


You're walking down a deserted street with your wife and two small children. Suddenly, a terrorist with a huge knife comes around the corner, locks eyes with you, screams obscenities, praises something, raises the knife, and charges at you.

You are carrying a Glock .40 semi-auto, and you are an expert shot. You have mere seconds before he reaches you and your family.

What do you do?

The Liberal / New Age / Democrat Answer:
Well, that's not enough information to answer the question!
Does the man look poor or oppressed?
Have I ever done anything to him that would inspire him to attack?
Could we run away?
What does my wife think?
What about the kids?
Could I possibly swing the gun like a club and knock the knife out of his hand?
What does the law say about this situation?
Does the Glock have an appropriate safety built into it?

Why am I carrying a loaded gun anyway, and what kind of message does this send to society and to my children?
Is it possible he'd be happy with just killing me?
Does he definitely want to kill me, or would he be content just to wound me?
If I were to grab his knees and hold on, could my family get away while he was stabbing me?
Should I call 9-1-1?

Why is this street so deserted? We need to raise taxes, have a paint and weed day and make this a happier, healthier street that would discourage such behavior.

This is all so confusing! I need to debate this with some friends for a few days and try to come to a consensus.

The Republican / Conservative / Old Fashioned Answer:

The Conservative Southern Republican / Red Neck, Blue Collar, every day answer, Answer :

click...(sounds of reloading).

Wife: "Hun, he looks like he's still moving, whadda y'all kids think?"

Son: "Mama's right Daddy, I saw it, too."

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! click...(sounds of reloading).

Daughter: "Nice grouping, Daddy! Were those the Winchester Silver Tips or the Hollow Points?"

by Thomas Sowell

When you are boating on the Niagara River, there are signs marking the point at which you must go ashore or else you will be sucked over the falls. With Iran moving toward the development of nuclear weapons, we are getting dangerously close to that fatal point of no return on the world stage.

Yet there are few signs of alarm in our public discourse, whether among politicians, the media, or the intelligentsia. There is much more discussion of whether government anti-terrorism agents should be able to look at the records of books borrowed from public libraries.

The Iranian government itself is giving us the clearest evidence of what a nuclear Iran would mean, with its fanatical hate-filled declarations about wanting to wipe Israel off the face of the earth. But send not to know for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee.

Just last year, before the American election, Osama bin Laden warned that those places that voted for the re-election of the President would become targets of terrorist retribution.

We could ignore him then. But neither we, nor our children, nor our children's children will ever be able to ignore him again if he gets nuclear weapons from a nuclear Iran. PLEASE, READ THE REST.

Father imprisoned four girls in flat to 'teach them Islam'

The Telegraph (UK)

A Moroccan father of four girls who imprisoned his wife and children in their flat "in the name of Islam" received a 10-month suspended sentence and was stripped of his parental rights yesterday. The unidentified 45-year-old was found guilty of breaking French law on compulsory schooling for children over the age of six, which applies to three of the four girls - aged four, 10, 13 and 14. The man, from the town of Romans-sur-Isère in the Drôme region, said he had refused... READ ON.


We will know soon!! How, you ask?

The Italian court will soon decide. How comforting.

ROME (Reuters) - Forget the U.S. debate over intelligent design versus evolution. An Italian court is tackling Jesus -- and whether the Roman Catholic Church may be breaking the law by teaching that he existed 2,000 years ago.

Read on.

Ice cores show warming 'natural'

HUNDREDS of thousands of years worth of climate records in ice cores show there is nothing unusual in a global warming trend over the past 25 years.

Marine geophysicist Bob Carter, a professor at Queensland's James Cook University and leading climate change sceptic, said the effects of human activity would barely register in the long-term history of climate change.

He told The Weekend Australian that ice cores from Antarctica "tell us clearly that in the context of the meteorological records of 100 years, it is not unusual to have a period of warming like the one we are in at the moment".

Dr Carter disputed the theory that human activity was making a current - natural - warm period hotter: "Atmospheric CO2 is not a primary forcing agent for temperature change." He argues that "any cumulative human signal is so far undetectable at a global level and, if present, is buried deeply in the noise of natural variation". READ ON.

Night Raid!

By Shawn Macomber

MOSUL, Iraq -- It isn't as if American soldiers are expecting sissy embedded journalists to be warrior souls, but one still imagines most fearless (okay, scared witless) correspondents must strive to acquit themselves with a bit more aplomb than I was able to muster on my first night raid of a suspected terrorist hideout last week in the heart of Sunni Mosul.

As we closed in on the target the call to disembark from the Stryker armored personnel carrier came a bit too suddenly for me. In my haste I first got caught on the vehicle's fire extinguisher, tearing a mile wide hole in the back of my pants. I immediately followed this up by cracking my helmet festooned head into the steel lip of the Stryker's door, like some giant stumbling around a McDonald's play area.

Shawn Macomber is a embedded Boston-based freelance writer. Read the rest here.

Picture of the Day

Pictures like this must drive the ACLU crazy. How dare they demonstrate any religious behavior when they are wearing GOVERNMENTAL uniforms. That has to be a violation of the separation of church and state tenet.Photo Courtesy of the US Air Force
"Airmen and Soldiers take a moment to pray for each other's safety before heading out for another day of convoy duty in Iraq. The Airmen run the convoys into Iraq and the Soldiers, in their armored trucks, escort them."

--- Courtesy of The Officers' Club.


Iran'’s nuclear confidence game

A New Year'’s
surprise from the Islamic Republic of Iran! And guess what? They will be doing a little Research and Development on enriching uranium so that they may finally get to build that sought after Islamic Bomb. Teheran'’s move clearly violates its formal agreement with the Europeans to suspend all uranium conversion and enrichment activities -— namely the step by step process towards building a weapon of mass destruction. READ ON.

Iran can now produce its own yellowcake

in what has been regarded as a major step, has announced development of technology to separate uranium from its ore.

The Iranian Atomic Energy Organization has achieved indigenous capability to separate uranium from its ore, officials said. They said the technology, known as a mixer-settler, would enable the extraction of uranium from the mined ore to produce concentrated uranium oxide, or yellowcake. READ ON.

Hey, I know. Let's send Joe Wilson over there to check it out. That will solve our problem. He can go over there and claim there is no yellow cake being processed, and none has been purchased.... and walla..... problem solved. No yellowcake. End of story.

Well I guess that is really an incorrect summation on my part. HeavyHanded apologizes. That really wouldn't be the end of the story...for there would be great gnashing of the teeth on the left about Bush lying, forcing the CIA and Mohamed ElBaradei to fabricate and exaggerate. Sorry. What was I thinking?


Global Warming Can Cause Extreme Climate Change, Scientists Say

What would we do without scientists?

Thursday, January 05, 2006


From one of my favorites, Mark Steyn:
The Real Reason the West is in Danger of Extinction


On the Editorial Page


Democracy doesn't always produce prosperity. Consider the case of Chile.

Catch-and-Release Terrorism

Remember Rachel Corrie, who died in March 2003 in a accident she caused by standing in the way of an Israeli bulldozer that was filling in a weapons-smuggling tunnel in Rafah, Gaza? Her parents, who've taken up her cause, had their own brush with danger in Rafah this morning, the Associated Press reports:

Five gunmen burst into a house and tried to kidnap Rachel Corrie's parents, Craig and Cindy. The gunmen eventually relented after being told who their targets were.

When we described Rachel Corrie as a "terror advocate," we received lots of e-mails howling in protest. If this description was unfair, can someone please explain why these terrorists "relented after being told who their targets were"?

From Opinion Journal
News story here.


The Opinion Journal reports on a story out of Vermont (you know, Howard Dean's home state) on a case in which the man of the accused crimes was convicted. His crime? Raping a little girl, who was seven years old at the start of what turned out to be a series of rapes, many times, over a four year period. Prosecutors had asked for what I think was an almost laughably light sentence of eight to 20 years.

The judge, the SOB, gave Mark Hulett of Williston, Vt. 60 bleeping days!!!! Yes, folks. 60 freakin' days!!!!

The judge, according to the Opinion Journal article, said he no longer believes that punishment works. What a moron! Of course it works. Punishment works because, well .... it punishes. That is what it is supposed to do. This crazy liberal idea that everyone and everything is fixable and must be fixed, and that punishment is just too damn mean and demeaning must end.

As the editorial pointed out, sending someone away for 20 years keeps the little girls of the community safe from this despicable piece of trash for, by golly, 20 years. Sounds like punishment works to me. The imbecillic judge went on to say that anger does not solve anything. Can you believe that?
"I discovered it accomplishes nothing of value; it doesn't make anything better; it costs us a lot of money; we create a lot of expectation, and we feed on anger,"Cashman explained to the people in the court.
The Opinion Journal's last paragraph:
"Cashman explained that he is more concerned that Hulett receive sex offender treatment"--whatever that is--"as rehabilitation," according to the report. Bizarrely, "under Department of Corrections classification, Hulett is considered a low-risk for re-offense so he does not qualify for in-prison treatment." You almost have to wonder if the people who run Vermont are insane.

Read the op-ed piece here.
Read the news story Rapist's Prison Sentence Triggers Outrage here.

Tucker Carlson on Howard Dean

"More than once...I've turned to Howard Dean in desperation, looking for material. On a slow news day, when the usual sources of outrage and farce are tapped dry, Dean is always there: a bottomless well of almost unbelievable quotes. He's as reliable as taxes, and far more amusing. The average 10-minute Howard Dean interview contains more headlines than a month of the Congressional Record. For a journalist on deadline, Howard Dean is like Santa."

Bush and CIA Transformation

"The Washington Post on Friday reported the existence of a massive covert program within the CIA to catch, detain and interrogate terrorists worldwide. Like President Bush's NSA program to eavesdrop on terror suspects without waiting for a warrant from the notoriously sluggish FISA court, the CIA program has drawn its share of short-sighted condemnation, as if 9/11 never happened. Here is how the Post described the nation's ability to gather intelligence on terrorists nearly four and a half years ago: 'The CIA faced the day after the 2001 attacks with few al-Qa'ida informants, a tiny paramilitary division and no interrogators, much less a system for transporting terrorism suspects and keeping them hidden for interrogation.' President Bush changed all that. He has, according to the Post, created the largest covert CIA program since World War II. And it has been highly successful. 'Indeed, the CIA, working with foreign counterparts, has been responsible for virtually all of the success the United States has had in capturing or killing al-Qa'ida leaders since Sept. 11, 2001,' the Post reported. Pardon us if we don't become outraged that the President of the United States transformed a weak CIA into an impressively effective tool for finding and defeating America's enemies."

--- New Hampshire Union Leader

"If we allow a guest-worker program to pass, it will be 1986 all over again—amnesty first, enforcement never, and an unending wave of illegal immigration. Strict enforcement is the only way to stop illegal immigration. Sadly, that won't happen until the White House and congressional leaders stop seeing illegal immigration as a political problem to be finessed rather than an invasion to be stopped."

--- Rep. J.D. Hayworth

Thousands told to work longer or see their pensions cut

THE retirement plans of thousands of Britons were dealt a major blow last night when they were told they would have to work longer or have their company pensions cut.

International demand fuels market for U.S. coal

The American coal industry, supported by burgeoning international demand for energy and continuing U.S. reliance on the fossil fuel for electricity, has seen steadily rising sales, revenue and investment after almost 20 years of stagnation.


Shanghai GM overtakes VW joint ventures to become China market ...
Forbes - USA
... joint venture with Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp (SAIC), has overtaken Volkswagen's two joint ventures to become the market leader in China with car sales ...

China-US relations have broad prospects: Ambassador
People's Daily Online - Beijing,China
Chinese Ambassador to the United States of America Zhou Wenzhong recently accepted an interview by People's Daily, expressing his view on the China-US relations ...

World benefits from China's growth: senior press officer
Xinhua - China
4 (Xinhuanet) -- China's senior press officer Liu Jianchao said in an article published Monday in the World News Journal that China's development is a "good ...

AMD Signs China Accord
TheStreet.com - USA
Advanced Micro Devices (AMD:NYSE - commentary - research - Cramer's Take) said Tsinghua Tongfang, China's third-largest computer maker, will offer a series of ...

China accelerates pace on FTA establishment in 2005
People's Daily Online - Beijing,China
The past year has witnessed China's readiness to establish free trade areas (FTAs) with various trade partners, said sources with the Ministry of Commerce on ...

Taiwan's Chen Says Island Should Give Up Its `China Fantasy'
Bloomberg - USA
5 (Bloomberg) -- Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian, whose support for separate statehood has strained relations with China since he was elected in 2000, urged ...

China has 573,000 orphans: official
Xinhua - China
5 (Xinhuanet) -- China currently has 573,000 orphans, among whom 66,000 have been adopted by government-sponsored orphanages, said Li Liguo, China's vice ...

China snubbed as Australia, Japan, US discuss security
Sydney Morning Herald - Sydney,New South Wales,Australia
A SECURITY summit between the US, Japan and Australia in Sydney next week is expected to sharpen tensions with China, with deteriorating relations between ...

China hints at shift away from dollar
Financial Times - London,England,UK
China indicated on Thursday it could begin to diversify its rapidly growing foreign exchange reserves away from the US dollar and government bonds -- a ...

Japan,China economic ties still hot despite chilly politics
Financial Express - Bombay,India
TOKYO, JAN 5: Economic ties between Japan and China remain robust despite chilly political relations, though a long-term chill could lead to a serious situation ...

Snow says US trade action against China won't work
Reuters - USA
WASHINGTON, Jan 5 (Reuters) - US Treasury Secretary John Snow said on Thursday the United States was not satisfied with China's move toward currency reform but ...


Republican Culpability for Republican Woes
By Christopher G. Adamo

A mindset of “acceptable risk” is spreading throughout the federal government with regards to the War on Terror. The most recent example of this dangerous behavior involves the Patriot Act, which appears to be in its death throes. Unfortunately, the Patriot Act suffers from a widespread and undeserved reputation as a dire threat to the civil liberties of law-abiding Americans…


Politically Correct Suicide
By Alan Caruba

We live in a society in which virtually anything can be known about your buying preferences, your credit rating, where you live, where you went to school, your employment history, et cetera. Why, then, do some -- maybe a lot -- of Americans get upset when their government undertakes the intelligence gathering and surveillance needed to insure the nation remains safe from its enemies? READ ON.


Immigrant gang terrorizes train passengers in France

Dispute Over Boston Mosque Strains Muslim, Jewish Ties

Palestinians storm Egypt border

This Should Surprise No One ........

It's probably Bush's fault.
Democrats Call for Hearings on Mine Safety

(CNSNews.com) - Democrats are now calling for congressional hearings into mine safety and the Bush administration's enforcement of mine regulations, after the explosion and collapse in West Virginia that left 12 miners dead, the Washington Post reported. The Sago Mine was cited for numerous safety violations over the past two years.

(Emphasis mine - H.H.) How tiring. Story at the The Boston Globe.

Newspaper Lists Top Abramoff Recipients by Political Party

(CNSNews.com) - USA Today lists the top ten Republican and Democrat recipients of Abramoff's campaign contributions. Rep. J.D. Hayworth tops the list for Republicans, and Rep. Patrick Kennedy tops it for Democrats, but accepting contributions is not illegal unless a payback is involved. Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-Ariz.) told Fox News on Thursday that he met Jack Abramoff socially a few times, but that Abramoff never came to his office to lobby him on anything. Read it.

Democrats Benefited from Abramoff Contributions, Too

(CNSNews.com) -
The National Republican Senatorial Committee said Wednesday that 40 of 45 members of the Senate Democrat Caucus have taken money from lobbyist Jack Abramoff, his associates and Indian tribe clients. President Bush's re-election campaign plans to give away $6,000 in campaign contributions from lobbyist Jack Abramoff, the Associated Press reported. Full Story

Rift With West Widens as Iran Plans to Resume Nuclear ‘R&D’

– Iran’s decision to resume nuclear research has brought relations between Tehran and the West to a new low. Six months after his unexpected election victory, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad this week signaled a further shift in foreign policy, charging that his predecessors’ diplomacy and detente with the West had been a waste of time...

Gingrich: Abramoff Scandal Threatens ‘Contract’ Legacy

- Former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich asserted Wednesday that the legacy of the “Contract With America” -- the agenda he promoted in 1994 that helped the GOP win both houses of Congress -- is “hanging in the balance” because of the scandal involving former lobbyist Jack Abramoff...

Israelis Stunned by Sharon’s Second Stroke

Jerusalem (CNSNews.com) – Israelis woke up to a new reality on Thursday morning as they learned of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s “significant,” life-threatening, and probably incapacitating stroke. Sharon’s spokesman Dr. Ra’anan Gissin, took pains to assure the world that the Israeli government was running smoothly...


"In Norway (which has experienced considerable Islamic immigration), blind people with guide dogs now find it difficult get a taxi ride, since so many cabbies are Muslim. Islam supposedly allows dogs when they are employed in necessary uses, such as herding and guarding. According to Islamic authorities, there is no good reason for refusing a guide dog. Yet Grethe Olsen of Drammen, accompanied by her guide dog Isak, was rejected by no fewer than 21 taxis before finally getting a ride." From Relapsed Catholic. Hat tip to Lost Budgie.

Hamas demands return of Seville in internet children's magazine

Article from the Spain Herald. (Hat tip to Lost Budgie and The Religious Policeman.)
The children's website Al Fateh, property of the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, demands in its most recent issue the return of the Spanish city of Seville to the "lost paradise" of Al Andalus, as the Muslim part of Spain was called during its existence between 711 and 1492. The web magazine, whose name means "conqueror," says it is for "the young builders of the future."

Other tidbits from the article:
The web magazine, whose name means "conqueror," includes an article in which the city of Seville itself is the narrator, saying, "I beg you, my loved ones, to call me to return along with the other cities of the lost paradise to Muslim hands so that happiness may reign in my lands. Dress me, for I am the bride of the land of Al Andalus."

The Al Fateh website says it is for "the young builders of the future." It contains, along with typical children's content like drawings, poetry, and stories, a great deal of references to resistence and martyrdom. Its main subjects are Palestine and the Arab and Muslim worlds, especially their religious aspect. The lives and deaths of the Palestinian "martyrs," many of them suicide bombers, are a constant theme, as well as descriptions of important cities in Muslim history.

"The lost paradise of Al Andalus," explicitly mentioned in the text, is a common meme in the Muslim world. It has led to concrete fatwas declared in order to recover territories conquered by Christian "infidels," such as that of three years ago by the Islamist sheik Yousef Al-Qaradhawi, which explicitly says that "Islam will return to Europe as the conqueror." Al-Qaradhawi is the leader of the European Council for Fatwa and Research, the president of the International Association of Muslim Scholars, and the spiritual leader of many other Islamist organizations around the world.


Communist China government says jump, and Billy Gates says 'How high?' Details.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006


By Michael Barone

The American
economy continues to surge ahead, though you won't read much about it in the mainstream media. Economic growth in the third quarter was 4.1 percent -- despite Hurricane Katrina! -- the 10th consecutive quarter with growth over 3 percent. Unemployment is 5.0 percent -- lower than the average for the 1970s, 1980s or 1990s.

Read the rest at Townhall.com


Opinion Journal had an article by Holman Jenkins in which he debates the media spin that "corporate big oil" runs the world oil market, and contends that the nationalized oil industries abroad as well as the heavy regulation of private oil ownership here at home jeopardize steady economic growth. Read it here.

This Will Get Them to Re-think What They Have Done

UNRWA condemns the attack on a United Nations facility in Gaza
ReliefWeb (press release) - Geneva,Switzerland
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) condemns the attack on a United Nations facility in Gaza on the morning of 1 January ...

Old Fashioned Cops Threaten Democracy

"What al Zarqawi refuses to believe is that the civil war has been going on since 2003, and that more and more Sunni Arabs have decided that their side has lost. Moreover, many of these Sunni Arab leaders have also decided that al Zarqawi and his al Qaeda butchers are the enemy."

Read the rest at Strategy Page.

Rethinking Nation-Building
PakTribune.com - Pakistan
... Despite some obvious shortcomings of the United Nations and international financial institutions, the fact remains that if they did not exist they would need ...

What? No beer? No men?

What kind of party is this?

Women start 1st Islamic sorority

by Julia Duin

America's first Islamic sorority is more about God than being Greek.
There will be no beer at Gamma Gamma Chi functions, in obedience to Islamic law, nor will there be group fraternizing with the opposite sex.
"Partying is allowed in Islam, but it's how you party," said Althia Collins, an Alexandria businesswoman who has helped create it. "You can have fun with girls and it doesn't have to include men." Read on.

HO HUM....

Another insignificant story (Bolivia Will Join Anti-US Movement) unless you're one of those on the left who loses sleep at night worrying about "they" think of us.
(CNSNews.com) - The president-elect of Bolivia says his country is joining Venezuela in its fight against "neoliberalism and imperialism," a reference to the United States.

Global Warming

Hot, but don't blame global warming
The Australian

A HEATWAVE in the nation's southeast was a regular new year event and could not be linked to global warming.

Former director of the Bureau of Meteorology's National Climate Centre Bill Kininmonth said the temperature spike in Sydney on Sunday to 44.2C was "just one of those sorts of things we have" every summer.

"It was not extensive - although it was intense - and it was not unprecedented," he said.


.... [figures show] the number of extremely hot days has declined since the 1940s.

Sydney weather consultant Don White said heatwaves were becoming less frequent and anybody who believed the heatwave was linked to global warming should "go back and look at the records", which would show hotter days in the past.

In the 1940s, Sydney had 10 days of 40C or higher. From 1955 to 1980 there were seven such days, and from 1981 to 2005 there were five.

Between 1939 and 1964, Sydney recorded 37.8C, the old 100 Fahrenheit, on 18 days, but registered the mark only nine times, including on Sunday, since 1965. Read all of it.

The Abramoff Affair

Hugh Hewitt (via Beyond the News) sounds off on the Abramoff Affair and I could not agree more - it's more about greed than politics. And, they need to be held accountable and prosecuted, regardless of party or "stature".
Yesterday morning, Washington D.C. lobbyist Jack Abramoff pled guilty to numerous counts of criminal wrongdoing and pledged his cooperation with federal investigators on whether he improperly used money from Indian casino clients to influence official business. Some reports suggest as many as 20 members of the House and Senate may be under investigation. Though you might not know it from news coverage to date, possible targets include big names on both sides of the political aisle--like Nevada's Senator Harry Reid, leader of the Senate Democrats, and Ohio's Republican Congressman Bob Ney, a senior figure in the GOP House caucus.

Any elected official--Democrat or Republican--who took money in exchange for official favors, ought to be exposed, forced to resign and prosecuted. This is possibly a scandal that can be traced more to greed than partisan politics. Whatever course it takes, the mainstream media should report fairly on all suspected parties, whatever their affiliation.
-- Hugh Hewitt

The Abramoff Effect
By Rich Galen
CNSNews.com Commentary

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

"We must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt."
-- Thomas Jefferson


Two Germans vs. Radical Islam
By Daniel Pipes

The interior ministers of two German states recently advanced important measures for containing radical Islam. The moves merit close attention across the West…

Israel Bracing for Increased Terrorism After Groups Call Off ‘Calm’
Jerusalem (CNSNews.com)
– Israel is bracing for an increase in violence after several terrorist groups announced over the weekend that a “period of calm” had expired at the end of the year.....

I Say: Put Him Through the Shredder

Saddam prefers death by shooting
Saddam Hussein has told his lawyers that he wants to be shot by firing squad, not hanged, if sentenced to death during his murder trial, which resumes later this month in Baghdad.


China's fake 'Starbucks' is banned from using name
Independent - London,England,UK
... a Chinese company which opened a chain of coffee shops under the name Xingbake, Chinese for Starbucks, in a landmark judgment that signals China may finally ...

Tell us about China's Press freedoms, Your Excellency
Telegraph.co.uk - United Kingdom
In two weeks' time His Excellency the Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to the United Kingdom, Zha Peixin, will be talking to a group of journalists ...

China commentator urges tougher line against Japan
Malaysia Star - Malaysia
BEIJING (Reuters) - China should prepare for enduring conflict with Japan and embrace nationalism as a source of social unity, a senior commentator with the ...

China expects 820 mln phone subscribers in 2006
Xinhua - China
3 (Xinhuanet) -- China's total number of telephone subscribers is expected to top 820 million this year, Ministry of Information Industry has predicted. ...

AKI - Rome,Italy
London, 3 Jan. (AKI) - The government of Pakistan is holding talks with China to purchase six to eight nuclear power for between seven billion to 10 billion ...

Pak denies reports of acquiring nuclear reactors from China
Asian Tribune - Bangkok,Thailand
Islamabad, 04 January, (Asiantribune.com): Pakistan has denied reports that it was holding talks with China to buy up to eight nuclear reactors from Beijing in ...

Jihad Coming

Israel had better start taking al-Qaeda terrorism seriously
Dore Gold

For the first time, Israeli defense experts are noting that groups identifying with al-Qaeda - or the global jihad - are determined to acquire operational footholds close to Israel's borders. The most dramatic sign was the announcement of "al-Qaeda Mesopotamia" - the organization led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi - that it fired four Katyusha rockets from Lebanon on December 27 that struck northern Israel. Read on.

Global Warming Is Here

This article comes from the "well-known experts" in climatology, Teen Ink.

Reforming the UN

Reforming The United Nations
Forbes - USA
... Since the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the UN has faced criticism from the United States over its policies and operating procedures. ...

UN Is Concerned

Nepal truce breaks down; UN concerned
Bangkok Post - Thailand
Kathmandu (dpa) - The United Nations said today that it was "deeply concerned" over the Maoist decision not to renew its unilateral ceasefire which expired ...

Now THIS is what the UN does best........

Partial ban slapped on caviar trade
Aljazeera.net - Qatar
A United Nations body has slapped a freeze on exports of caviar from wild sturgeon, saying the move was essential to protect the endangered fish that produces ...


US wants five powers on rights body; problems loom
Reuters - USA
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - US Ambassador John Bolton wants the five Security Council powers to have a seat on a still-disputed new UN human rights body, a move ...

Monday, January 02, 2006

India kills top Kashmir guerrilla

Indian security forces say they shot dead a top Kashmiri Islamic militant on New Year's Day.
Read on...

India warns Pakistan to rein in terrorists

India has warned Pakistan to stop cross-border terror to preserve the ongoing peace process between the two countries.
Read on...

Radical clerics ignore decree on madrassas

Radical Muslim clerics have ignored an edict to expel all foreign students from Pakistan's madrassas, heightening fears that the Islamic schools will continue to be recruiting grounds for young Western-born suicide bombers. More.


China, Russia pledge stronger relations
Daily Times - Lahore,Pakistan
... to the 2006 celebration of the "Year of Russia" and promised to make it a "complete success." Russia will mark the "Year of China" in 2007. ...

Rising inequality in China
Hindu Business Line - India
THERE is much international interest in China's economy, because of its remarkable growth over the past quarter century. Recently ...

China's manufacturing might a rising concern for Thailand
Bangkok Post - Thailand
China will increasingly be a threat to exports from other Asian countries as it continues to boost manufacturing capacity in a wide range of industries ...

China closes several hundred porn websites
Indiantelevision.com - Andheri,Mumbai,India
MUMBAI: In what is being seen as a positive move in China's fight against online porn peddlers Chinese public security authorities have shut-down 598 porn web ...

China, US ties stable - China's ambassador to Washington
Forbes - USA
BEIJING (AFX) - Sino-US ties developed in a stable fashion in 2005, said Zhou Wenzhong, China's ambassador to the US. Zhou said ...

China's End-September Foreign Debt Rises 8.1% to $267 Billion
Bloomberg - USA
2 (Bloomberg) -- China's foreign debt grew at a slower pace in the first nine months of 2005 after the government limited the amount banks can borrow overseas ...

Civil Rights Group Appeals to United Nations Over US Torture
The NewStandard - Syracuse,NY,USA
... Appealing to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) for a resolution to condemn the interrogation and detainment practices Washington has made ...


United Nations asks to meet Syria'a Assad in Hariri case
NewKerala.com - Ernakulam,Kerala,India
BEIRUT: The UN commission probing the killing of Lebanese ex-Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri has asked to meet Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Foreign ...

Last UN Troops Pack to Leave Sierra Leone as Mandate Expires
New York Times - United States
(AP) - The last soldiers in what was once the United Nations' biggest peacekeeping force packed up over the weekend as their mandate expired Saturday ...

Sunday, January 01, 2006

War on Terror: The global war

Robert Cornwell has written a piece for The Independent that is full of the usual tripe of the left in regards to the global war on terror. One of his main premises is that the next three months is crucial for the United States' war on terror, without explanation as to why this 3 month window, versus say 6 months, or nine months is of such importance. Apparently if there is no civil war in Iraq within 3 months, then we are "in like Flynt" as the saying goes.

He correctly states that Iraq is but one battle in what will be a long worldwide campaign and offers this quote from George Bush: "Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes.......Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen."

This statement was made to Congress nine days after the 9-11 attacks. It is a statement that Congress, people left of center and unfortunately many of the general population conveniently like to forget.

Mr. Cornwell constantly puts the war on terror in quotes, indicating perhaps this really is not a war at all in his estimation. He defines terrorism as "the use of violence for political ends", but he would have been far more accurate, and it would have served him well to include in that definition, violence on innocent civilians.
It's hard to believe - but less than five years ago there was no "war on terror". You could make the case that terrorism, the use of violence for political ends, is the world's third oldest profession. This century especially, it has flourished - from the Middle East to Europe. Sometimes, in its Irish, Basque and Palestinian versions, it has been driven by nationalism. Other varieties, in Italy and former West Germany, have been fuelled by left-wing ideology. But it had primarily been a law enforcement and intelligence problem. Then came 11 September 2001 - and America's new war.

The new enemy is radical Islam, driven by both ideology and nationalism, and embodied by al-Qa'ida, its fury directed against the West in general and the US in particular. Already the "war on terror" has led America to embrace a new doctrine of preventive war. In its name, the US has invaded two countries - Afghanistan and Iraq - and some urge it to attack others. This amorphous conflict has already lasted longer than the Korean War and US involvement in the Second World War, and this may be only the beginning.

Cornwell points out the effectiveness of the war on Al Qaeda and its impact on their organizational structure, but then points out the various splinter groups loosely tied to Al Qaeda and their ability to strike out around the world, emphasizing, however, the notable exception - the U.S.; here he questions why this is.

Using the less than successful cases against Moussaoui, Padilla and Sami al-Arian (the Florida professor) he says, "These episodes have not been a glowing advertisement for US justice."
Because of these failings and because of many scares since 9/11, but no attacks on our soil, one false alarm after another, as he calls them, or "solid" evidence of sleeper cells here, Cornwell surmises that, "the conclusion is inescapable. Either the threat has been much exaggerated, or somebody must be doing something right." He does not go out on a limb here and say which he believes.

He writes that this is a war on many fronts (which I agree with), but that it is a war on so many fronts, that he questions whether the GWOT is really a war (with the disclaimer "in the normal sense of the word"). So we are finally getting around to the fact as to why he had to put quotation marks around his usage of the war on terror. Namely, that it really is not a war. Not an uncommon position from someone on the left.

He oddly tries to compare it with America's decades-old "war on drugs" and "war on poverty" because it entails more than military action. Semantics as I see it. Words, matter, yes. But sometimes we get hung up on labels; as is the case here. Cornwell states:
Briefly last summer, Donald Rumsfeld, the Defence Secretary, and others began to talk about "the global struggle against violent extremism", in an effort to play down the military component. But within a month the new moniker had disappeared. Mr Bush underlined the point by citing the "war on terror" a dozen times in a single speech."

I don't see those two monikers as saying anything radically different from each other. Nor would our approach to obtaining victory be any different or dependent upon what the "correct" or "preferred" moniker is.

He spews out the normal talking points of the American left like Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 partly or mostly because of the dislike between Saddam Hussein and Bin Laden. This is a silly and shallow argument; since when did you have to be loving blood-brothers to join together to fight a common enemy? Another talking point is espoused: The invasion of Iraq was a distraction from the original goal and the war in Afghanistan.

Cornwell then starts to display his, up to now, unknown skills of a tea leaf reader. He feels Americans are fed up with the conflict in Iraq, that Americans now believe that prewar Iraq was never a direct threat to the US, and that the war to remove Sadaam has made them less safe.

Mr Bush, he says, has tried to prove that "radical Islam is out to establish a new caliphate, stretching from Spain to Indonesia, governed by sharia law and casting the world back into the Middle Ages." Cornwell further states this has a zero chance of happening.

Am I to assume, then, that since he thinks this is an impossibility, we have no reason to act? Or that we should revert back to the good old days of treating it like a law enforcement and intelligence problem? That approach did not work out so well for us.

According to Cornwell, in order to win this 'war on terror', "Genuine victory will require political and societal change. It will require radical change in the Arab world's view of the US, and in Arab society itself." He then falls into the liberal trap of trying to explain away terrorism by claiming that its' root causes are poverty, despair, prejudices, stoked by religious bigotry. America is also guilty of ultimately being interested only in protecting Israel and oil and we will use force to "have our way". Just more tired leftist talking points.

"Somehow, the US and its allies must convince the Islamic world that they are not waging a religious war, or discriminating against Muslims. Unfortunately, deeds suggest otherwise," he laments, adding, "The image of the US is in tatters." And of course, according to Cornwell, it will stay that way until this present administration is gone.

Oh, but of course. For it is then, and only then, when the US will once again be loved and admired by everyone like it was before. Sorry. I forgot that period in history. I must have pulled a Rip Van Winkle. Just exactly when was this state of Nirvana?

He says, "In short, hostility to the US will persist." With this I do not necessarily disagree. But is that our chief concern? I know to many on the left, it is. It is an emotional want of the left - to be liked, admired, adored. (Hollywood comes to mind).

This one statement from Cornwell, I think, sums up his thoughts and attitude best: "Americans, in all probability, will develop a more European, more fatalistic attitude to terrorism: that it is a scourge to be contained, rather than eliminated once and for all."

That is the European way of seeing things. Appeasement. Accepting fate - that's just the way things are - we can't change it - we have no right to change it.

That's not our way; besides, their way presently looks like a colossal failure. We want to win; we want to change things for the better; and believe we can, and that we should.

Cornwall overlooks a third option. Despite the realistic realization that it cannot and will not be eliminated once and for all, drop the fatalism mindset, and attack it as we are now. We cannot contain it through passive means; relying on police tactics alone is a recipe for failure. 9/11 proved that.

Palestinian militants end truce, destroy UN club
Daily Times - Lahore,Pakistan
The targeting of both Israel and the United Nations served as a double blow to the crumbling authority of Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, who had issued a ... More.

Key elections ahead
USA Today - USA
... The United Nations and African Union are battling to defuse a long-running border dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea before it explodes again into bloodshed. ...More...

Officials at UN Seek Fast Action on Rights Panel
The Ledger - Lakeland,FL,USA
By WARREN HOGE. UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 31 - Officials of the United Nations, which has struggled through a period of scandal and mismanagement.....More...


United Nations, NY (PRWEB) January 1, 2006 -- For the first time in almost 27 years, the United Nations General Assembly will be debating the issue of establishing diplomatic relations with advanced Extraterrestrial Civilizations that may now be visiting Earth. On December 16, 2005, a Resolution to establish a United Nations Decade of Contact was formally transmitted to the incoming President of the General Assembly, H.E. Jan Eliasson of Sweden by the Institute for Cooperation in Space (ICIS), a Non-Governmental Organization. President Eliasson was Sweden's Ambassador to the United Nations from 2000 to 2005. Details. (That is, if you dare.)


The U.N. Secretary General's refusal to answer questions about his son's perks in the oil-for-food scandal shows how badly the world body needs a thorough house cleaning. The complete editorial at the Daily Breeze.


China bans production of ozone depleting substance CFC-113
China Daily - China
The Chinese government banned the production and consumption of CFC-113, a kind of ozone depleting substances (ODS), starting from Sunday. ...


Japan eyes India to check China
Indian Express - New Delhi,India
TOKYO, DECEMBER 31: Japan's military is stepping up its defence of islands also claimed by China and will propose talks with India on diplomatic and security ...

China to increase subsidy for rural cooperative medical system
China Daily - China
The State Council, China's cabinet, has decided to add allowances to Chinese farmers who join in the rural cooperative medical system and expand the pilot...

Taiwan warns of China 'threats'
BBC News - UK
By Caroline Gluck. Taiwan's President Chen Shui-bian has warned of growing economic and military threats from China. In his New Year ...

China economy grew 9.8 pct in 2005 - vice minister
Reuters India - Mumbai,India
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's economy grew 9.8 percent in 2005, a vice minister was quoted as saying on Sunday, revising up an earlier estimate and again ...

China's economy set to overtake France and the UK
New Zealand Herald - New Zealand
China's economy will probably expand at more than four times the pace of Europe and Japan this year as Premier Wen Jiabao boosts consumer spending and ...

China calls for cooperation with US on oil, nuclear power
Forbes - USA
SHANGHAI (AFX) - China and the US should deepen their cooperation in energy issues, including overseas oil exploration, transport of crude oil through ...

China's tax revenue hits record 3 trillion yuan in 2005
China Daily - China
China's total tax revenues reached a record high of 3.0866 trillion yuan (385.8 billion US dollars) in 2005, an increase of 20 percent, or 514.8 billion yuan ...

China faces growing pressure of employment
Xinhua - China
Du came to Shanghai, one of China's economic powerhouses, to look for a job as a senior in a faraway university in northeast China. ...

Taiwan's President Pushes for New Constitution, Despite China's ...
Voice of America - USA
The president of Taiwan began 2006 by pledging to pursue his goal of a new constitution for the island, despite opposition from mainland China. ...

In rural China, a time bomb is ticking
International Herald Tribune - France
NEW YORK The recent police killing in China's Guangdong Province of as many as 20 villagers who were protesting the government's seizure of land for a power ...

Al Qaida Suspect Said to Fake Death to Avoid Arrest

Suspected al-Qaida militant Syrian citizen Loa'i Mohammad Haj Bakr al-Saqa, center, shouts "Allahu Akbar," Arabic for "God is great," as he leaves from a courthouse between plainclothes Turkish policemen in Istanbul, Turkey, on this Thursday, Aug. 11, 2005 file photo. The Syrian accused of serving as a key point man between suicide bombers and al-Qaida flew so far beneath the radar that even fellow militants thought he was dead. Story here.