Hezballah Speaks

From the mouths of Hezballah fighters come the chilling truth of their organization; they are indoctrinating children from birth, teaching them the military skills as youths, and raising a generation of warriors whose only purpose is to kill non-belivers in the name of Islam. They have a long view of war, and wait, patiently, for their opportunities to kill Israeli soldiers.  And when they run out of Israelis, they will move on to the rest of the unbelivers.

Read the whole sad story here.

H/T: Instapundit.

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More on Hezballah

Today, Tigerhawk says in a post:

The problem is, there is no way to settle this fight between Israel and Hezbollah.

He’s right, of course, and the light is going on for a few more pundits.  As evidence for his assertion, he links to a post by Jonah Goldberg in The Corner where the tired diplomatic concept of land for peace is finally laid to rest.  As Jonah says:

Hezbollah doesn’t want land-for-peace, it wants genocide for peace.

A hard truth for the diplomats, who never met a conflict they couldn’t postpone, but surely the new reality as Israel runs out of land to give.  The true character of Hezballah, and its parents, the Shia Islamists and Al-Qaeda, is soon going to be clear even to the folks in Europe and the UN who have allowed the propaganda organs of the terrorist outreach groupls to pull the wool over their eyes.

There is no diplomatic solution.  There is only the final solution, and that is for one side to beat the other out of existence.  A nasty, hard truth, but it is the truth.  As such, the seconds for each group can stand aside and let the fight continue, or they can pitch in and help their team win.

Here’s a column by Daniel Hannan in the Telegraph (UK), that offers a different take on the same problem. Hannan writes, in part:

It won’t be a "durable" ceasefire, Condi, and it won’t be "sustainable"; not while the ayatollahs are in power in Iran. This war isn’t about border security, or prisoner exchanges, or the status of the Shebaa Farms.

It isn’t really about Lebanon at all, for Hizbollah is not, in any meaningful sense, an indigenous Lebanese phenomenon. The paramilitaries, rather, are creatures of Teheran: the Levantine branch of the Islamic Revolution

He goes on to pour a little salt in the UN wound by noting the utter uselessness of diplomacy in this situation:

The ayatollahs’ contempt for national sovereignty was manifested in the very first act of their regime: the seizure of the US embassy. Diplomatic immunity is the foundation of all international relations.

Even during the Second World War, when irreconcilable ideologies fought to extirpate each other, embassy staff were peacefully evacuated through neutral countries. By seizing sovereign American territory, the revolutionaries were sending out a message: "We do not acknowledge your rules; we despise your notion of territorial jurisdiction".

He concludes, ominously, with this thought:

This is the poisonous ideology that we are fighting. Our chief purpose in defeating it should not be to restore the comity of nations, nor to bolster Muslim moderates, nor even to bring freedom to the long-suffering Iranian people – though all these would be happy side-effects. Our main object, rather, must be to forestall a nuclear attack.

Read the whole thing for a realistic review of the cards held by the players.

Today, the UN Security Council voted to impose sanctions on Iran if it does not agree to the latest demands of the IAEA.  The vote gives the Iranian regime until August 31 to respond……and does not acknowledge that Iran has already publicly stated it will not meet the "unrealistic" demands of the UN. 

Friends, we are very near the boiling point of the Islamo-Fascist Revolution.

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Hezballah & Hassan Nasrallah – An Inconvenient Truth

Here’s some background on Hezballah. Here’s some biographical information on its current leader, Nasrallah.

From Wikipedia comes this introduction to Hezballah:

Hezballah was inspired by the success of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.  It was formed by the Ayatollah Khomeini’s followers in the early 80s to spread Shia revolution and to combat Israeli occupation of following the 1982 Lebanon War.  Hezballah views Israel as " an illegal usurper entity, which is based falsehoods, massacres, and illusions", and follows a distinct version of Islamic Shia ideology developed by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran.

Please note that Hezballah’s raison d’etre was the expulsion of Israel from Lebanon.  Recall that Israel withdrew from Lebanon. Note that Hezballah has not disbanded, turned in its arms, or ceased terrorist attacks in Israel.  Now the stated reason for the existence of Hezballah is the destruction of the "Jewish State".

Now to Nasrallah.

Nasrallah’s biography explains how he got close to prominent clerics in Lebanon, Iran and Iraq, in particular the Sadr family. In 1975, when he was only 15, Nasrallah joined the ranks of the Lebanese Shi’ite movement Amal – which Hezbollah broke from after its creation in 1982 – led by Musa al-Sadr.

From 1976 to 1978 he was sent to study in Najaf, Iraq, at the famed Shi’ite seminary the Hawze. There he met most of his mentors, starting with Iranian ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (leader of the Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979) and also his tutor, ayatollah Mohammed Sadiq al-Sadr (Muqtada al-Sadr’s father). He also was in close contact with Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani (the leading Shi’ite spiritual force in Iraq today).

And finally, he was groomed by future Hezbollah leader Abbas al-Musawi, whom he succeeded after Musawi was killed by the Israelis in 1992. Those two years in Najaf definitely left a huge imprint on Nasrallah’s psyche.

And that’s why, when it was time to help his Shi’ite brothers in Iraq after the US intervention in 2003, and especially Muqtada, Nasrallah responded. Nasrallah, using the 1982 model of what had worked in Lebanon to kick out the multinational force, adapted some of his tactics in Iraq.

Indeed, Iraq in 2006 looks a lot like the Lebanon of 1983. For example, the Iranian man in charge of this whole operation is Hassan Qommi, who had the exact same job … in Beirut in 1982. Qommi helped Hezbollah instructors get to Iraq to train Muqtada’s Mehdi Army, which has staged several high-profile confrontations with US forces, notably at Fallujah.

Starting in 2003, Hezbollah began building up organizational and military apparatuses in Iraq. For instance, that April, Hezbollah opened two offices in the Iraqi cities of Basra and Safwan. The campaign, targeting moderate Iraqi Shi’ite clerics willing to work with the US, was most likely orchestrated by Muqtada and Hezbollah.

Keep in mind that even though Nasrallah greatly respects Sistani, he is totally at odds with him when it comes to fighting the US presence.

Also in 2003-04, Imad Mughniah, the top Hezbollah operative wanted by most Western secret services for his role in most of the attacks perpetrated by Hezbollah, including the bombings of the US Embassy and the US and French barracks in Beirut in 1983, was sighted in Iraq. Syria had most probably facilitated his entry on to Iraqi soil.

Hezbollah also had a specialty in Lebanon in the 1980s, which was kidnapping foreign citizens. Is it a coincidence that it was happening on a daily basis in 2004 in Iraq?

Knowing that Nasrallah called for suicide bombings against the US forces in Iraq, it was just a matter of time until Hezbollah was ready to strike. The connection with Muqtada is total. For proof of Hezbollah’s active participation in the insurgency there are the arrests made in February 2005 by Iraqi authorities of 18 Lebanese Hezbollah fighters taking part in the insurgency.

In a July 11 speech that was really focused on the situation with Israel, Nasrallah made a point of again talking about Iraq. He specifically called for Iraqis to step up their resistance against the US invader. In response, Muqtada offered to send members of his militia to south Lebanon to fight Israel. This is not surprising, since Muqtada declared in 2004 that he was "the striking arm for Hezbollah".

Obviously, Hezbollah as a multinational group cannot be simply reduced to Lebanon and Israel. Its expansion into Iraq fits strategically very well in the plans of its two sponsors: Syria and Iran.

Richard Armitage, former US deputy secretary of state, has said that the United States had a blood debt with Nasrallah’s organization. In light of the fact that Hezbollah was, prior to the September 11 attacks of 2001, the organization that had killed the most Americans, and the likelihood of additional killings of US soldiers in Iraq, now would be a good time to repay the debt.

Things are getting a little clearer now that we can identify patterns, relationships, and leadership.  Iran, the leader of the Shia Islamist Revolution, has birthed Hezballah. It has educated the children of the Shia in Lebanon, Iran, and now Iraq.  Such a child has turned into Nasrallah.  Fighting the good fight in  Lebanon, he has also committed to action against the US in Iraq.  His mentor and tutor is the vile Muqtada Al-Sadr, with whom the US has been actively fighting since his revolt in April, 2004 in Iraq. Many regard Al-Sadr as the leader of the Shia death squads killing Sunnis whenever and wherever they can be found.  Al-Sadr has, incidentally, pledged to send 1,500 of his "best men" to Lebanon to help defeat the IDF.

Now perhaps, it is easier to understand the US position on an Israeli-Hezballah cease fire.  It is NOT in our interest, in Iraq and anywhere else for that matter, to allow this group to gain a reprieve in a war that offers the opportunity for the destruction of Hezballah, and the damaging of Iran’s prestige.  In Iraq, our fight against Hezballah may serve to "clarify" for the Baathist remnants (Sunni Muslims) the point that pushing us out of Iraq only hastens their slaughter at the hand of their fellow Muslims. If the IDF can beat the stuffing out of Hezballah, it may take some pressure off Iraq.

On the other hand, defeating Iran by defeating its guerrilla army makes the situation even riskier.  Does Iran have the chutzpah (I could not resist) to raise the stakes?  The answer probably is yes. Thus we should expect to see something terrible happen in the Middle East in the near future.

But, if the UN, the Arab League, and various European states succeed in shaming the US and Israel into a cease fire, through reason or through Hezaballah propaganda regarded as truth in too many European capitals and news rooms, the risk of an escalation is probably delayed for a few years.

But no matter how this current affair ends, the Shia War will not end until one of the combatants is counted out on the mat.  And the collateral damage to the neighborhood is going to be extensive.

Update: The Telegraph (UK) as more on the subject here.

Continue reading “Hezballah & Hassan Nasrallah – An Inconvenient Truth”

The Bar Codes of Life

Today’s Wall Street Jounal (subscription required) has a fascinating topic in "The Science Journal", written by Sharon Begley. The subject is the use of genes to identify plants and animals.

From bugs to birds to people, research shows, short DNA sequences from the right gene can uniquely identify a species, like a bar code uniquely identifies consumer products.  The question is, which gene can serve as a bar code for the planet’s 2 million species of palnts and animals?

…zoologists have found a gene that works for animals.  Botanists are racing to do it for palnts.  If they succeed, any species of plant or animal could be identified just by dropping a leaf, feather or other sample into a hand-held device that would read the gene sequence, transmit that data to a central database, and receive the reply, "that’s a sword fern".

The gene that serves as a bar code for the world’s animals, called cytochrome oxidase, works because it is present in every animal but different in every one, too. "You can distinguish one clam from another," marvels Dr. Cameron.

…Bar coding plants has proven tougher than  bar coding animals, however.  Plants hybridize like crazy, and have so much identical DNA that finding a gene sequence that one species has and no others do is a challenge.

The story goes on to report that scientists are confident that they will solve the plant gene puzzle in the short term, and the bar coding of life on Earth will soon be complete.

What implications might this have for your scribe and his humble reader(s)?  Well, imagine a trip to the nearby Earthfare to purchase "Wild Alaskan Salmon", per your doctor’s orders, a return to the manse, where a scale from the evening meal is dropped into the Plant/Animal Bar Code Scanner, and, sacre bleu!, the result shows the purchase actually came from Joe’s Salmon Farm in Indiana, Pennsylvania.  Maybe those Johns Island beefsteak tomatoes just arrived by air from Camarillo, CA. Or perhaps your morning bowl of South Carolina strawberries actually originated in Georgia!

Better yet, take this zinnia (courtesy of Pam)

Zinnia_iiii_27_july_evening_2006_1_2Is it really Pam’s, or did she take a picture of someone else’s plant.  Imagine the opportunities for honesty and truth telling that will be the inevitable result of bar coding plants and animals. A new level of consumer confidence, the end of cattle rustling and horse stealing, and truth in grocery selling. With renewed confidence does your humble reporter face the challenges of the 21st century.

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Alone

Many years ago, Nova broadcast a show on the possibility that Man has an instinct to evolve, and that our growing understanding of biology and technology would allow us to create a newer Human Being.  This new HB would then migrate to the stars and perpetuate our species. It was a very powerful idea that has hung in your humble writer’s consciousness ever since.  Several thinkers have, over the years, refined this concept, the most notable being Ray Kurzweill.  His latest book, The Singularity, attempts to define the coming singularity as the next step in human evolution. Much of the analysis is beyond your humble scribe, a student of the softer side of academe, but the imagination is rife with implications. An instinctive imperative to survive, at any cost, coupled with the same drive to populate the universe, perhaps as the last chance to avert the inevitable extinction of our species, either through our own self destructive urges or the intervention of nature, as our study of geology tells us has happened more than once on this planet. Ah, to dream!

And it may be more important than a moment or two of personal wool gathering. This story serves to remind us that, after all, we may be alone in the Universe.  The only sign of intelligent life in the entire Universe! Says the author:

Those who want to believe sometimes argue that the mathematical probabilities against intelligent life may be less certain than we think. They cite "complexity theory"–which suggests there may be a certain irregularity and unpredictability even in the laws of nature. But others think the mathematical odds must be respected. "Nobody knows why equations work so well in describing things. Maybe it’s the handprint of God, or an ancient, advanced, powerful alien race," says NASA scientist David Grinspoon, but "there is something spooky about the way mathematical relationships are so enmeshed with the physical nature of our universe." For the moment, cold rationality suggests that Jacques Monod was right when he said that "Man at last knows he is alone in the unfeeling immensity of the universe, out of which he has emerged only by chance."

A chilling thought that we imperfect beings, fighters, exploiters of our planets resources, self-destructive, and small-minded, are the only race in the Universe to evolve into some sort of self-awareness, that it is in our hands to create the circumstances of our continued existence. Are we up to it?

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Villainous Company

A wonderful blog, Villainous Company, has recently been highlighted as Blog of the Week at Powerline.  The Clan of Agricola have been longtime fans, having been introduced to her by Tigerhawk, with whom she shares some unknown affiliation and posting rights. 

Cassandra has published today a wonderful piece that slaps down those on the left that continue to argue that the Administration is a fascist putsch, that Bushhitler wants to take away our freedoms, and that giving our our precious liberty is just not worth it as regards the Islamo-Fascist War.

To wit:

The HVES still have not figured out, after five years of listening to an unending stream of critics who "just want the administration to listen to Other Voices", (would those be the ones who elected neither him, nor the majority party in Congress?) precisely what these folks would like the White House to DO about tiresome Islamofascists who insist on flying planes into buildings full of innocent people. It seems any attempt to do something as revanchist as actually preventing future terrorist attacks, whether that takes the form of military action, law enforcement approaches, or tracking terrorist finances (which according to the NYT looked like a really super idea when employed ineffectively by a Democrat administration during peacetime but should be ruthlessly outed when used effectively by Republicans during wartime) launches yet another Eric Lichtblau article telling us how those awful neocons plan to resurrect John Ashcroft from the dead sans necktie and sporting assless chaps. And if America doesn’t do something about it soon, he’ll be riding Dubya’s Pet Goat backwards up Pennsylvania Avenue as Jeb Bush declares martial law in Florida, shoots a million or so blacks just like he did in 2000 and usurps the Presidency, making himself King-for-Life. I tell ya, it’s deja vu all over again. This is how Dynasties Are Born

She concludes with some wisdom that we all ought know, but apparently need to be reminded of rather frequently:

When we begin to forget this important idea, when we start to think our freedoms are in danger only from government and never from our fellow men, we risk losing the larger part of our precious liberties. And if you don’t believe that, walk down a dark alley in a bad part of town in any city – black or white – at night for a month and see how long you keep your wallet. Stop locking your doors and windows. Publish your social security number on the Internet. And go ahead – let your teenaged daughter post those photos on MySpace. We’re sure nothing will happen to her. People are inherently good. It is only the government we can’t trust.

Read the whole post here.

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Floyd – He Da Man

_41919028_floyd203 Today Floyd Landis won the Tour De France in an astonishing display of grit, determination, and courage.  Three days ago, he appeared headed to a non-podium finish after a disastrous stage in the Alps left him 8 1/2 minutes behind the leader.  He relinquished the Maillot Jeune and appeared headed for his much needed hip surgery and a nice retirement. To the astonishment of competitors, race officials, and commentators he girded his loins, hydrated, and came back to the course the next day and BLEW THE DOORS OFF THE COMPETITION in what many consider to be the finest effort in the history of the modern tour.  He won the state by 5:42 over the second place rider, an unheard of effort in the mountains.  That effort put him 30 seconds behind the leader in the overall cclassification.  Today, he finished 3rd in the final Time Trial, securing the Maillot Jeune for the meaningless ceremonial ride through Paris, where he will be crowned the Champion of the 2006 Tour De France. An astonishing performance for a worthy champion……and let it be known that an American has now won the last 8 Tours De France…..

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Who Says We’re Losing?

From Strategy Page comes this report, one of the daily nuggets that help us stay informed on the situation in Iraq.

Marines_stop_bomber The attached commentary tells the story:

U.S. Marines from 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment and Iraqi soldiers inspect the wreckage left from a suicide truck bomber against one of the Marines’ forward operating bases along the Iraqi-Syrian border, July 13, 2006. All that remains of the incident is a burnt chassis. The car bomb was described by Lt. Col. Nicholas F. Marano, the battalion’s commanding officer, as possibly the largest IED attack against Marines deployed near the border. One Marine, 24-year-old Lance Cpl. Lawrence F. Hiller of Austin, Texas, is credited to stopping the suicide bomber from breaching the Marines’ outpost and causing further damage. Hiller’s actions quite possibly saved lives, according to Marano. “Had Lance Cpl. Hiller not been alert at his post, this incident could have easily become catastrophic,” said Marano. Since the battalion arrived here four months ago, the Marines have encountered mostly IED attacks, they say. Firefights between insurgents and Marines in this area have become rare since a large-scale offensive operation was launched in November 2005 to hamper the terrorists’ control of the area. Back then, a previous Marine unit fought face-to-face daily with enemy forces during the four-week operation, which resulted in an estimated 150 insurgents killed or captured. Photo by: Cpl. Antonio Rosas

Emphasis mine. Sounds like we’re winning in that little corner of Iraq.  Maybe we’ll try to find other stories like this about other little corners.

Continue reading “Who Says We’re Losing?”

Those Who Don’t Rember History are Doomed to Repeat It

Every day reminds us of the omnipresence of the Blogosphere. The unparalleled access to information, unfiltered, every bias available for consideration. Every one of us can find somebody else writing something that we agree with, a comforting notion when the organs of the MSM seem to blindly hew to their set of beliefs absent any factual considerations.

Today is a particularly good day to observe the phenonemon.  Recently, Kofi Annan consented to an interview by Der Spiegel while in Germany for the World Cup. Among the subjects discussed was the US and its role in the world:

SPIEGEL: The biggest team, the United States, likes to play by its own rules.

Annan: There is a certain tendency on the part of some Americans to treat the UN as a multilateralism à la carte where you pick and choose where it suits you and when it doesn’t suit you, you pull back. In Iraq, they want us to work closely with the Iraqis and lead an international compact for economic reform. They are within the UN on Iran and they are working closely with us on avian flu. In these cases they are working very closely with us because they have nowhere else to go. You cannot put together a coalition of the willing.

SPIEGEL: Have the Americans changed their behavior as a result of problems in Iraq?

Annan: There has been a very important lesson that everyone has learned from Iraq. Future American administrations will be much more hesitant to embark on a military action. It will also make Congress much more reluctant to appove military action and much more demanding of the justification and rationale for going to war.

SPIEGEL: It seems that every US generation in recent history has had to go through the experience of losing a war.

Annan: Yes, and it is a bit sad to put it that way. One has to learn from history. Quite frankly, it is almost impossible to have a sense of vision without a sense of history. If history is learned, then it doesn’t have to repeat itself over generations.

Imagine the atmosphere in the room as the reporter and Annan smugly chided the world’s greatest democracy and bastion of freedom. How happy they must have felt to be in agreement that such a great nation was so blind to the lessons of history, while they, the international elite, who have contributed so very little to democracy during their lives, pat themselves on the back for their enlightenment.

Fortunately, the United States, unlike, say Germany,  has produced a journalist like Thomas Sowell, who can address the arrogance of the uninformed like few others. He writes today, at Real Clear Politics, on people like Kofi and the reporter.  He says, in part:

One of the many failings of our educational system is that it sends out into the world people who cannot tell rhetoric from reality. They have learned no systematic way to analyze ideas, derive their implications and test those implications against hard facts.

"Peace" movements are among those who take advantage of this widespread inability to see beyond rhetoric to realities. Few people even seem interested in the actual track record of so-called "peace" movements — that is, whether such movements actually produce peace or war.

Take the Middle East. People are calling for a cease-fire in the interests of peace. But there have been more cease-fires in the Middle East than anywhere else. If cease-fires actually promoted peace, the Middle East would be the most peaceful region on the face of the earth instead of the most violent.

Was World War II ended by cease-fires or by annihilating much of Germany and Japan? Make no mistake about it, innocent civilians died in the process. Indeed, American prisoners of war died when we bombed Germany.

There is a reason why General Sherman said "war is hell" more than a century ago. But he helped end the Civil War with his devastating march through Georgia — not by cease fires or bowing to "world opinion" and there were no corrupt busybodies like the United Nations to demand replacing military force with diplomacy.

There was a time when it would have been suicidal to threaten, much less attack, a nation with much stronger military power because one of the dangers to the attacker would be the prospect of being annihilated.

"World opinion," the U.N. and "peace movements" have eliminated that deterrent. An aggressor today knows that if his aggression fails, he will still be protected from the full retaliatory power and fury of those he attacked because there will be hand-wringers demanding a cease fire, negotiations and concessions.

That has been a formula for never-ending attacks on Israel in the Middle East. The disastrous track record of that approach extends to other times and places — but who looks at track records?

The most catastrophic result of "peace" movements was World War II. While Hitler was arming Germany to the teeth, "peace" movements in Britain were advocating that their own country disarm "as an example to others."

British Labor Party Members of Parliament voted consistently against military spending and British college students publicly pledged never to fight for their country. If "peace" movements brought peace, there would never have been World War II.

Not only did that war lead to tens of millions of deaths, it came dangerously close to a crushing victory for the Nazis in Europe and the Japanese empire in Asia. And we now know that the United States was on Hitler’s timetable after that.

For the first two years of that war, the Western democracies lost virtually every battle, all over the world, because pre-war "peace" movements had left them with inadequate military equipment and much of it obsolete. The Nazis and the Japanese knew that. That is why they launched the war.

"Peace" movements don’t bring peace but war.

The lessons of history cannot be revised, or twisted, to suit a modern political agenda. As Sowell notes, rhetoric cannot replace reality. President Bush understands reality, and it drives his opposition crazy. Kofi et al think that their rhetoric supercedes the reality of human nature, history, and conflict.

You tell me……..who has learned from history?

Update: TigerHawk adds his thougts…

Continue reading “Those Who Don’t Rember History are Doomed to Repeat It”

Imablog & Dan Conover

I’d like to take a minute to thank Imablog and Dan for all of their hard work in providing us Lowcountry types a place to be seen and read. A lot of hard work, offered freely, with the idea that providing a forum for the many voices, different opinions and subjects, can only be a good thing for our community. We are all fortunate to be able to participate in something that may be revolutionary, and it’s good to have Imablog and Dan as our "agents for change". The challenge for the rest of us is to participate in the process, and support each other in the days to come.

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