|The War Against Some Terrorists
thanks to Cursor
Al Qaeda planning next phase
"That is baseless, absolutely baseless," Ahmadullah says. "Osama is alive, healthy, and safe. Last night our friends in Urozgan informed me by phone that he had met Osama somewhere near the border, and he said Osama was safe. He is always in close contact with Mullah Omar.
"I am personally requested by Mullah Omar and Sheikh Osama to go to Urozgan and take the command of new guerrilla war preparations, which will start as soon as possible, and you will hear the news in papers and on BBC," he adds. "We withdrew from major cities and provinces because the ruthless bombing of Americans had killed a lot of civilians as well as our holy warriors. We took that tactical step for our safety, and we will start our guerrilla campaign against our enemies as soon as we regroup."
thanks to follow me here...
Letter From Ground Zero
When the Bush Administration began its war on terrorism, announcing that if you weren't with us you were against us, did it imagine that from the dizzying heights of its sole superpowerdom it would command the nations, rewarding some, raining bombs on others, and dominating all, according to its sole interest and pleasure? The nations have had other ideas. Preferring American practice to American preaching, they have taken up arms in their own causes, just as previously many built nuclear arsenals whose use again urgently threatens the world. We have not one unified war on terrorism but many clashing wars. It's hard to say which are more dangerous--those that, like Israel's, seek to join the American one or those that, like India's, seem to undercut it. All are burning out of control. For now, the instruments that alone might stop them--negotiation, treaties, a readiness to compromise, measures of disarmament--have been cast aside.
thanks to wood s lot
Bringing the Holy War Home
It often happens that the lunatic right, in its feckless way, gets closer to the heart of the matter than the political mainstream, and so it was with Jerry Falwell's notorious response to September 11. In suggesting that the World Trade Center massacre was God's judgment on an America that tolerates abortion, homosexuality and feminism, Falwell--along with Pat Robertson, who concurred--exposed himself to the public's averted eye. For most Americans, from George W. Bush on down, resist the idea that the attack was an act of cultural war, and fewer still are willing to admit its intimate connection with the culture war at home.
Opponents of the "clash of civilizations" thesis are half right. There is such a clash, but it is not between East and West. The struggle of democratic secularism, religious tolerance, individual freedom and feminism against authoritarian patriarchal religion, culture and morality is going on all over the world--including the Islamic world, where dissidents are regularly jailed, killed, exiled or merely intimidated and silenced. In Iran the mullahs still have police power, but reformist President Khatami has overwhelming popular support and young people are in open revolt against the Islamic regime. In Pakistan the urban middle classes worry that their society may be Talibanized. Even in the belly of the fundamentalist beast, the clandestine Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) has opposed both the Taliban regime and the scarcely less thuggish Northern Alliance.
At the same time, religious and cultural reactionaries have mobilized to attack secular modernity in liberal democracies from Israel to the post-Communist countries of Eastern Europe to the United States. Indeed, the culture war has been a centerpiece of American politics for thirty years or more, shaping our debates and our policies on everything from abortion, censorship and crime to race, education and social welfare. Nor, at this moment, does the government know whether foreign or domestic terrorists are responsible for the anthrax offensive. Yet we shrink from seeing the relationship between our own cultural conflicts and the logic of jihad. We are especially eager to absolve religion of any responsibility for the violence committed in its name: For that ubiquitous current cliché, "This has nothing to do with Islam," read "Antiabortion terrorism has nothing to do with Christianity."
U.S. cooking up a coup in Venezeula?
THERE is the smell of a coup in the air these days. It was like this in Iran just before the 1953 U.S.-backed coup overthrew the Mossedeah government and installed the Shah. It has the feel of 1963 in South Vietnam, before the military takeover switched on the light at the end of the long and terrible Southeast Asian tunnel. It is hauntingly similar to early September 1973, before the coup in Chile ushered in 20 years of blood and darkness.
Early last month, the National Security Agency, the Pentagon and the U.S. State Department held a two-day meeting on U.S. policy toward Venezuela. Similar such meetings took place in 1953, 1963, and 1973, as well as before coups in Guatemala, Brazil and Argentina. It should send a deep chill down the backs of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and the populist coalition that took power in 1998.
The catalyst for the Nov. 5-7 interagency get-together was a comment by Chavez in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist assault on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. While Chavez sharply condemned the attack, he questioned the value of bombing Afghanistan, calling it "fighting terrorism with terrorism." In response, the Bush administration temporarily withdrew its ambassador and convened the meeting.
thanks to BuzzFlash
God Is On His Side
"God made Bush President"
Each of Michelangelo's flawed Sistine Chapel ceiling frescoes
has been restored to reflect the greatness of
the Church's new icon, George W. Bush.
In this panel, entitled "The Creation of Dubya, God
awakens Dubya, bestowing upon him a new gravitas.
At any rate, we're now informed by Time's Man of the Year and high ranking Church officials that God intervened and "made" Bush President. Then - although capable preventing terrorist attacks, just as He was capable of preventing Al Gore's votes from being counted - God allowed great tragedy and violence and sorrow to befall Americans, all so that Bush could shine. Because that's what matters. To God, and to all right-thinking Americans. Evidently.
According to Giuliani, Russert, the Cardinal, and Freepers, God is up in heaven, perversely manipulating human beings like toy soldiers, so that his - we presume they believe second son, Dubya - could save us all and get the credit the liberals have so unjustly deprived him of for so long.
thanks to BuzzFlash
Me and Big Media
How I learned to make the right answers to the wrong questions
by Ani DiFranco
Ever a slave to my mother's smile-and-be-sweet upbringing, I spent years trying to assimilate myself to the interviewers' culture long enough to answer their questions politely. And for years I was left feeling compromised and icky. For example, a semirhetorical icebreaker such as, "So, you're on tour supporting your new record?" could stun me at the outset. "Uh...yeah," I replied, until I developed the courage and composure to say things like, "Well, no. I am on tour...because that's my job as a working musician. In contrast to the commonplace industry model of: make an album then go on tour to sell the album, I do not play live music for the purpose of marketing a commodity. I see touring as an end in itself, as all folksingers do. Live performance is activism, exorcism and music school for me. Albums are peripheral. In fact, the scheduling of my touring itineraries and my periodic documenting of songs on albums is so disconnected that I have repeatedly found myself touring right up to album release and then taking an unstrategic but much-needed vacation."
thanks to wood s lot
Just when I start taking things too seriously, Weblog Wannabe comes through again.
Humans for Dummies™*
Smiling - Do these Primitive Response Mechanisms really work?
Yes they do!
Just as with computers, you cannot kick people and expect them to do what you want them to. Detailed re- programming, and often a complete re-formatting of their memory of you is required.
That sounds complicated, where do I begin?
Begin by smiling at people (but brush your teeth first). Gradually, over a number of weeks you will overwrite their previous experiences of you and, pixel by pixel, they will build a new picture of you.
You will, of course, need to be familiar with my Body Clean-Up™ and De-Hunchmenter™ programs before trying this simple exercise, so don't go frightening anyone just yet (see Attraction & Stalking - Vital Differences).
Celebrity Sound Boards
All I can say is that it seems as though making prank phone calls are back in style. I am overwhelmed by the people who request these calls every day.
To those of you that have no idea what any of this is, the links on the bottom are sound boards with clips taken from movies with the intent to play to people over the phone. Go ahead and check it out, you will understand in no time.
So, your hand is getting a little warm while playing or surfing the net? This little mod could help you. The basic function is somewhat similar to the device in bowling alleys where you can dry you hands and the bowling ball. Lets try out if this idea works :)