blogger downtime

Alright, I overstretched myself (but i am not an empire). I take some of that back. Despite it being almost halloween (here I would link to my latest post on monotremetech.blogspot.com, but frankly I'm afraid that the Secret Service will get me and waterboard my ass, so, no, feel free to go there, but don't tell anyone I sent you. I'm talking about the post chronologically closest to this one) I don't actually think that he slavers and lusts for blood (that is, he probably isn't the Anti-Christ, but I'm not giving better than 40-60 on that). More likely he's just an incompetent nincompooping bastard who thought everything would go well and that he'd get out of the Iraq war with, oh, less than a hundred Americans dead (he still doesn't care how many non-Americans he kills) and now he has too much pride to accept that, after 650,000 dead in Iraq alone, the war in Iraq might have been a mistake.

Pride comes before the Fall.

I hope this is the last political post here. I've pretty much decided that my family and I are not going to the U.S. while GW Bush is president, and I wouldn't be surprised if we never go to the U.S. again. Much as I love certain individual Americans, I'm just not going to risk getting cavity searched and then taking a free flight to Afghanistan where the CIA will torture my ass merely for posting my thoughts here. My friends and family in the U.S. can visit me out here in the Free World.

Damn, how did that get out there. All I was going to say was that blogger had some scheduled downtime and I had to wait an hour or two before I could post a link to a hilarious hint. I have *got* to care less about what the Americans are doing to the world.


How many deaths

The question is asked, how many deaths will it take before he knows that too many have died.

First a quibble, possibly there is some sense of horror for the deaths that the United States is inflicting (much of it indirect, to be sure, but quite a lot of direct random civilian death too) on Iraqis, Afghans and those Lebanese (children or otherwise) that George W Bush pushed the Israelis (who might not yet have been ready to unleash random death on civilians, although they would have done it on their own eventually) to kill. But that sense of horror, if it's there, doesn't show (at least in that post, maybe it shows in previous posts).

Instead, the cost is measured only in American deaths. That's par for the course, I suppose. I should not be surprised.

But to the answer. Apparently, to George W Bush, Iraq is like a volkswagen beetle. There's always space for one more. It's not like anyone is going to be able to stop the Americans in their march to a million or two million dead. They're the hyperpower of the world. One can hope (although that dwindles steadily now), that, after all that death and blood, the American people will learn something, perhaps that they should stay home and stop killing the rest of us off, defend their country and not destroy countries all over the world. But I'm not too sanguine on that lately. It's that American can-do attitude. Of *course* you can destroy this or that country. The question is, should you do it? How many dead civilians are you willing to spend? (Not your own, foreigners, rag-heads, towel-heads, gooks, whatever). Perhaps the threshold is 100,000. But perhaps not, they're far beyond that now. Perhaps it's half a million. They're a bit beyond that now in Iraq, but they spent several million Vietnamese and Korean civilian dead to pacify those countries (there's nothing quite so peaceful as the dead), so my guess is, when half the Iraqis are dead, possibly George W Bush will be done. I think that won't stop the terrorism though. As a practical matter, he'll have to kill them all. And then not stop, but leave Saudi Arabia, Iran, the West Bank, Syria, Egypt and, oh, the rest of Northern Africa a dead zone. Then, possibly he might be ready to turn on the Indonesians, Malaysians, Nigerians, Sudanese (man, maybe there's the solution to Darfur, finally), Pakistanis (oh, never mind them, they've got the Bomb, maybe they can be bribed off). And after a billion dead, the Chinese will be an existential threat. There's another billion and a few right there.

It's not that I think the Muslims of the world should be exterminated, but because killing off a fraction of them is not going to help America. Either you kill them all, or you stop killing off their civilians (and, frankly, the US government should pay incredible reparations to the survivors, but the Americans will never do that either, they can do no wrong). Unfortunately, at this point, I don't think George W Bush, or Cheney and his gang know how. They *can't* stop. It would be too humiliating to their party and their ideology to be so wrong, and with so much blood on their hands. They have to go on. The only way they're going to stop is to be kicked out of office. But GW Bush has another two years to continue the killing. Possibly losing his majorities in both the House and the Senate will put a brake on the killing though. If only for that, I pray that the Republicans lose *big*. I normally root for Republicans since they are marginally (very marginally) more conservative and less stupidly leftist as the Democrats. But this year, and perhaps for another decade, they need to be kept away from the rest of the world. We'd rather not die, or be tortured, either by the US government or by countries to which the US will export us to be tortured. No thanks.


On trusting american foreign policy

From a post in The National Review, by Michael Rubin, one of the most powerful and lovely letters I have ever seen. On the other hand, the source is David Frum, so possibly it's not true, or, at any rate, is slanted toward untruth. But the letter itself is lovely, and it reflects on all american policy, not just whoever Frum's enemy at the time was.

Dear Excellency and Friend,

I thank you very sincerely for your letter and for your offer to transport me towards freedom. I cannot, alas, leave in such a cowardly fashion. As for you, and in particular for your great country, I never believed for a moment that you would have this sentiment of abandoning a people which has chosen liberty. You have refused us your protection, and we can do nothing about it. You leave, and my wish is that you and your country will find happiness under this sky. But, mark it well, that if I shall die here on this spot and in my country that I love, it is no matter, because we all are born and must die. I have only committed the mistake of believing you.

Sirik Matak, the author was offered the opportunity to leave with the Americans, he stayed in Phnom Penh instead and was shot in the stomach by the Khmer Rouge.

The post is meant to be a lesson for the "Abandon Iraq crowd". I don't see much point in that <rest of this rant deleted for being unworthy of Sirik Matak's memory>


The American Way of War

No, not really. I don't have either the time or the patience to find links, so I'm going to take a lot of quotes from one article out of context, and I'll generalize them.

The article is Korea: forgotten nuclear threats.

Napalm was invented at the end of the second world war. It became a major issue during the Vietnam war, brought to prominence by horrific photos of injured civilians. Yet far more napalm was dropped on Korea and with much more devastating effect, since the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) had many more populous cities and urban industrial installations than North Vietnam.

and a bit further down:

“Men all around me were burned. They lay rolling in the snow. Men I knew, marched and fought with begged me to shoot them . . . It was terrible. Where the napalm had burned the skin to a crisp, it would be peeled back from the face, arms, legs . . . like fried potato chips” (2).

That's a quote about friendly fire, napalm being dropped on American troops, here's what they did to the civilians:

“The inhabitants throughout the village and in the fields were caught and killed and kept the exact postures they held when the napalm struck - a man about to get on his bicycle, 50 boys and girls playing in an orphanage, a housewife strangely unmarked, holding in her hand a page torn from a Sears-Roebuck catalogue crayoned at Mail Order No 3,811,294 for a $2.98 ‘bewitching bed jacket - coral’.” US Secretary of State Dean Acheson wanted censorship authorities notified about this kind of “sensationalised reporting”, so it could be stopped (3).

One of the first orders to burn towns and villages that I found in the archives was in the far southeast of Korea, during heavy fighting along the Pusan Perimeter in August 1950, when US soldiers were bedevilled by thousands of guerrillas in rear areas. On 6 August a US officer requested “to have the following towns obliterated” by the air force: Chongsong, Chinbo and Kusu-dong. B-29 strategic bombers were also called in for tactical bombing. On 16 August five groups of B-29s hit a rectangular area near the front, with many towns and villages, creating an ocean of fire with hundreds of tons of napalm. Another call went out on the 20 August. On 26 August I found in this same source the single entry: “fired 11 villages” (4). Pilots were told to bomb targets that they could see to avoid hitting civilians, but they frequently bombed major population centres by radar, or dumped huge amounts of napalm on secondary targets when the primary one was unavailable.

MacArthur’s orders were “to destroy every means of communication and every installation, and factories and cities and villages. This destruction is to start at the Manchurian border and to progress south.” On 8 November 1950, 79 B-29s dropped 550 tons of incendiaries on Sinuiju, “removing [it] from off the map”. A week later Hoeryong was napalmed “to burn out the place”. By 25 November “a large part of [the] North West area between Yalu River and south to enemy lines is more or less burning”; soon the area would be a “wilderness of scorched earth” (7).

Without even using such “novel weapons” - although napalm was very new - the air war levelled North Korea and killed millions of civilians. North Koreans tell you that for three years they faced a daily threat of being burned with napalm: “You couldn’t escape it,” one told me in 1981. By 1952 just about everything in northern and central Korea had been completely levelled. What was left of the population survived in caves.

This is what the American military does best. In Iraq, the American invasion and occupation is directly and indirectly responsible for around 600,000 deaths.

That's only 600,000 though. I'm wondering when the Americans are going to get moving and kill off another million or two as they did in Vietnam. That's one good thing about modern media though, it keeps the Americans on notice that there's someone watching. So they only massacre piecemeal these days, instead of killing off a million civilians a year.

It's unfortunate that the American civilians don't learn anything. All they care about are the American dead and wounded. All they learn after another war is how to minimize American casualties by increasing enemy and civilian casualties.

I can hope that the international media can keep the Americans from Nuking Iran or North Korea, but given that George Bush is a nut (probably more of a nut now than when he started, frustration does that to nuts), as are most of his neoconservative cronies, although possibly Cheney is just in it for the war-profiteering, more war, more business for Halliburton), I don't bet too much on that. I'm not an American though and can't do anything about this situation. The Americans will have to clean it up for themselves. But since they don't learn, well, I don't have too much hope for that either. Maybe they'll kick out a lot of Republicans this November, but what good will that do? It'll probably just push Bush over the edge, that much closer to nuking someone, anyone.


Kids pray

Kids pray. Great post by Unaa at slibe.com.

And another image I can related to (although timmy isn't doing that yet, I think), is a baby's foot mark on a pregnant woman's belly. That's probably a photoshopped image though, given that the images is marked tonterias.com.