There will be many proposals for border security before the dust settles on what will be signed into law.
This morning I head an interview with Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia about his proposal to use drones all along the border, with immigration enforcement picking illegals up. He said that it is a more practical approach than (metaphorically) a 20' fence where someone will come along with a 21' ladder. He also proposes utilizing tunnel locating technology currently being employed with great success in Iraq. Enforcement manpower is going to have to be stepped up too, but technology will reduce the numbers needed as opposed to manning every single inch of the border with bodies.
Whether his proposal is accepted or not his thrust is to secure the border first where no one can come in, no one can leave so the ones effectively "trapped" here will be far more willing to comply with whatever documentation plan we come up with. He also indicated that they would have to leave and re-enter to fully comply with his proposal. Interesting and we'll see who else comes up with what.
The article posted refers to "fifth column" so looked it up on Wilkipedia for anyone not fully knowing what the term means, me included. Bold emphasis added by me.
The term is also used in reference to a population who are assumed to have loyalties to countries other than the one in which they reside, or who support some other nation in war efforts against the country they live in.
"FBI's Mueller: Hezbollah Busted in Mexican Smuggling Operation
Thursday, March 30, 2006 10:27 p.m. EST
"FBI Director Robert Mueller said this week that his agency busted a smuggling ring organized by the terrorist group Hezbollah that had operatives cross the Mexican border to carry out possible terrorist attacks inside the U.S.
"This was an occasion in which Hezbollah operatives were assisting others with some association with Hezbollah in coming to the United States,” Mueller told a House Appropriations subcommittee during a Tuesday hearing on the FBI's budget.
In a stunning revelation, Mueller admitted that Hezbollah had succeeded in smuggling some of its operatives across the border, telling the House committee: "That was an organization that we dismantled and identified those persons who had been smuggled in. And they have been addressed as well.”
Hezbollah was responsible for the single most deadly terrorist attack against the U.S. before 9/11 - the Oct. 1983 bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut, which killed 243 U.S. troops.
In November, an al-Qaida operative who was on the FBI's terrorist watch list was captured near the Mexican border, housed in a Texas jail and turned over to federal agents, according to Rep. John Culberson, R-Texas.
"A confirmed al-Qaida terrorist, an Iraqi national, was held in the Brewster County jail," Rep. Culberson told ABC Radio host Sean Hannity. "He was captured in Mexico. This was within the last six weeks. He was turned over to the FBI."
"If the economy is as strong as the Fed is worried about, that's going to mean better corporate earnings," ..........
"Techs lead Nasdaq to 5-year high
Mar 29, 2006 — By Jennifer Coogan
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rallied on Wednesday, led by sharp gains in the Nasdaq Composite to its highest since February 2001, after positive comments by a brokerage about wireless technology makers, including Qualcomm Inc. <QCOM.O>
The blue-chip Dow industrials got a lift from Boeing Co. <BA.N>, which received a $2 billion jet order, and from a brokerage upgrade of manufacturer 3M Co. <MMM.N>.
Stocks fell on Tuesday after the Federal Reserve lifted the benchmark fed funds rate and hinted that more rate increases may be needed to stem inflation.
"If the economy is as strong as the Fed is worried about, that's going to mean better corporate earnings," said John Augustine, chief investment strategist at Fifth Third Asset Management. "The driver is rotating from front-end consumer to back-end business spending. And business spending is being driven by the need to continually improve productivity, which brings in tech spending." .............
First link shows quite a stretch on freedom of speech. Don't let the door hit 'em on the way out ........
"Room But for One Flag
March 30, 2006
The Washington Times
In 1907, during one of the great immigration waves, President Teddy Roosevelt said that the immigrant who comes here "in good faith ... shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin." However, he added, "We have room but for one flag, the American flag."
Words well worth recalling as we noticed what student protesters decided to hoist up their high school flagpole while ostensibly demonstrating against immigration reform. In Spanish this is called reconquista, the reconquering of Mexican land lost during the Mexican-American war (1846-48), and its appearance in Los Angeles this week adds a dark dimension to the entire immigration debate.
In contrast to Mexican immigrants, those who emigrated to America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries came mostly from countries -- Ireland, Poland, Italy, Bohemia, Germany and Greece -- that had little if any significant historical dealings with the United States. Nearly all had never had colonial possessions in America, nor had lost territory on the continent in war. Their citizens emigrated because they were inspired by hopes for a new and better life, not redress for past indignities. In time they became Americans.
Something entirely different motivates the Hispanic radicals. Their inspiration is anti-Americanism, which they cheerfully articulate in banners proclaiming "This is our continent, not yours!" They claim citizenship, or at least the benefits of citizenship, to be theirs by right, rather than something to be earned. And their ultimate fantasy is no different than the radical Muslim immigrants living in the slums outside Paris: To retake what they think was formerly their ancestors' land, if not in name then in numbers. Tragically, they are able to dupe idealistic students into advancing their cause by masking their true intentions behind the facade of ethnic pride or civil rights. Nothing is more un-American, especially for those requesting American citizenship.
We acknowledge that a majority of protesters gathering in Los Angeles and San Diego this week do not believe in the reconquista agenda. Their disagreement is with Congress, not America. But by accepting radicals into their ranks, by allowing students to desecrate the American flag, they have given tacit approval of the reconquista message. If the leaders of the Latino community wish to bring public opinion to their side, they must condemn these verbal and symbolic calls for reconquest. "
Hillary advocates amnesty while salivating at the thought of all those votes for her presidential run in '08.
Arnie says amnesty is anarchy. Arnie's correct that we're a nation of law for without law we have no structure or framework in which to safely, freely live in an orderly society that's the envy of the world. Were it not why are illegals streaming across the border to get here???????????????
Knowing Hillary and her modus operandi, Dick Morris seems to be proposing a logical solution to the issue which meets needs of the majority, especially economically which was brought to my attention by both a very astute LP member and my hubby.
Without a free, sound, robust economy we have no nation ..... so economic interests absolutely must take precedence.
In 1964, the Republican Party, led by Barry Goldwater, was painted as sacrificing the interests of civil rights to its goal of attracting Southern support, although Republicans backed the bill in far greater numbers than Democrats did. But when Goldwater ran for president rejecting civil rights legislation, it doomed GOP chances among black voters for at least the next 40 years.
Will the Republican need to appease its anti-immigration base similarly vitiate President Bush’s efforts to appeal to Hispanic voters?
Hispanics, let’s remember, were the swing voter group in 2004. Having voted for Al Gore by 30 points in 2000, they sufficiently trusted Bush to back Sen. John Kerry by only an eight-point margin. If the Republican Party now turns its back on these newly swing Latino voters, it may permanently lose its ability to win America’s fastest-growing voter group, perhaps dooming the party altogether.
But the demands of the GOP base must also be accommodated. Here’s how:
One must separately consider the three key elements of immigration reform under discussion: The border fence, the guest-worker program and the criminalization of illegal aliens and those who employ them.
The GOP base wants a fence. It is vital to the entire concept of whether or not we can control our borders. All efforts to beef up manpower on the border have failed to stem the daily flow of illegal immigrants from Mexico. A fence is the only way to do it. By backing a fence and demonstrably taking control of our southern border, the Republican Party will appease the demands of its base.
But to prevent disaster among Latino voters, it must accompany the fence with a more liberal policy on guest workers and criminalization.
Simply put, the fence must have a gate that swings open for immigrants we want and need. To avoid permanently antagonizing our southern neighbors and to keep the labor supply on which so much of American business and prosperity depend, we need a guest-worker program.
The GOP base, happy with the fence, will probably go along with it. Whatever the Congress needs to do to differentiate the guest-worker program from amnesty it should do, but it must pass a generous guest-worker program. (If it is necessary for those here illegally to return to Mexico and reenter as registered and enrolled guest workers, to convince the right that a guest-worker program is not amnesty, so be it).
With a 4.7 percent unemployment rate, we will be slitting our own throats by denying our economy access to Mexican workers. We just need to make them legal, not illegal. With a border fence to enforce the difference, a guest-worker program will work politically.
And it is also important for the Republicans to avoid symbolic acts like making it a felony to be here illegally or to employ someone who is. The same practical deterrence is quite possible through the fence, and merely upgrading the jail time from a misdemeanor to a felony won’t make much practical difference.
Judges, in any event, are not about to crowd our jails with millions of felony illegal entrants. Deportation is and will be the answer to those we catch — and deportation has new meaning with a fence in place.
Yes to the fence, yes to guest workers and no to greater criminalization are the keys to giving the Republican Party access to Latino votes in the future while coping with an issue that roils tens of millions of Americans. "
Found this posted on another site.
Now for the flip side of the mindset ............
"Latinos: It's way overdue
|I am the first one to criticize Chicano/Latino politicos when they don't defend the interests of the community. However, during the present crisis, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and most Latino elected officials in Los Angeles have acted in a principled manner, forcefully speaking out against the racist nativism that is gripping the country. The same can be said of the Catholic Church and its refusal to go along with the hysteria. |
If the actions of right-wing radio hosts, virulent anti-immigrant groups, and opportunistic politicos were an aberration, there would be hope that people would come to their senses. However, this form of nativism has infected the United States since the birth of the Republic.
It led to the persecution of Irish immigrants; the burning of a convent in Charleston, Mass., in 1828; the burning of Catholic churches in Philadelphia in 1842; and fueled the illegal invasion of Mexico and the theft of 50 percent of its land. This was topped off with the creation of the Native American party of the 1850s, which became known as the Know Nothing Party, and later the Republican Party.
Every time that the nation had an economic depression or recession, the Greek Chorus pointed at the immigrant. Thus the Chinese were excluded in 1882, and in the 1920s immigration acts made national origins the basis of admission. The expressed intent of these laws was to keep America white by giving preferences to northern Europeans, who, the politicos said, were blonder, taller and had bigger brains.
In 1965, the nation went through an examination of conscience and passed an amendment to the immigration act based on family preferences. The result was that too many Asians came in and Latin Americans continued to migrate to this country.
Shortly after the passage of the 1965 amendments, politicians such as Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyoming, and ex-California Gov. Pete Wilson built careers on baiting Mexican immigrants. They criminalized them, calling them illegal and dehumanized them, calling them aliens.
With the advent of the right-wing think tanks and the Internet, immigrant-bashing became an industry. Playing on the fears of white Americans who have historically been narcissistic and consumed by angst, these groups have made millions by creating a living hell for people who just want what others want a place to live in peace and educate their children.
For too long the Mexican/Latino community has been silent. This has encouraged bullies and wannabe brownshirts to come out of
Samuel Johnson in 1775 said that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel. History will bear out his wisdom.
Aside from the mendaciousness of the nativist, their stupidity is mind-blowing. The United States has been criminally negligent when it comes to Latin America. Its drug market has converted many Latin Americans into suppliers of American demand for drugs. As a result, the governments of these countries have morally decayed. The U.S.' green revolutions have destroyed agricultural subsistence, and the North American Free Trade Agreement has destroyed nascent manufacturing industries.
Today, the only thing that is sustaining Mexico and Central America is the remittances sent back annually by hard-working compatriots. If it were not for these remittances, those economies would crash and there would be many more immigrant workers coming into territory that was illegally taken from their ancestors. They are illegal because the border was moved.
The demonstrators had no choice but to protest. I have no other choice but to urge my students and community to resist immoral laws.
As a historian, I remember the words of Martin Niem ller, a Protestant pastor and social activist:
When the Nazis arrested the Communists,
I said nothing; after all, I was not a Communist.
When they locked up the Social Democrats,
I said nothing; after all, I was not a Social Democrat.
When they arrested the trade unionists,
I said nothing; after all, I was not a trade unionist.
When they arrested the Jews, I said nothing; after all, I was not a Jew.
When they arrested me, there was no longer anyone who could protest.
Rodolfo F. Acñu a is professor of Chicana/o Studies at California State University, Northridge. "
Sincere thanks to all who read my blog entries.
Just came in email ....... live embedded links.
Today the Senate will begin debate on my Secure America's Borders Act (SABA) bill and tomorrow the first amendment offered will be the bill approved by the Judiciary Committee on Monday night.
In the coming days we will debate the merits of each. This debate will give Americans the opportunity to hear all sides of this important issue.
I believe this is an important debate for us to have, and equally important for us to act. For too long this problem has gone unaddressed and is now threatening our national and economic security.
As we enter into this debate, let me be clear with you where I stand:
We are a nation of immigrants built upon the rule of law. And so many legal immigrants have played by the rules when coming to this country and making a life for themselves and their families. We should not break faith with those who played by the rules, so I will not support amnesty. We respect the rule of law and those who made it here the right way, and are trying to make it here the right way, rather than reward those who came here the wrong way.
America needs to secure her borders and we need real interior enforcement. Which is why the bill I introduced prioritizes both as well as increases legal immigration, and in doing each, honors our heritage as a nation of immigrants who value the rule of law.
I am pleased that the Judiciary committee bill has strong border enforcement mechanisms - the inclusion of those in this bill is a big step in the right direction.
But we have much more work to do. The Senate will take the remainder of this week and next to complete that work.
During the course of the upcoming debate, there will be many amendments offered. Some of these amendments will be constructive and will bring us closer to comprehensive immigration reform. However some of these amendments will propose amnesty, weaken border security measures and strip away interior enforcement provisions. These we must oppose.
Our nation is one founded on the rule of law by generations upon generations of immigrants. We should not have to choose between these founding principles.
In the end it is my hope that we have a bill which has strong enforcement mechanisms and that addresses the humanitarian and economic crisis we are now facing.
Bill Frist, M.D.
Post Office Box 158552
Nashville, TN 37215
Office: (615) 386-0045
From the mouth of an immigrant pours the truth.
"Schwarzenegger: Amnesty is 'Anarchy'
"The "first order of business” for the federal government in dealing with illegal immigration is to secure the nation’s borders, Arnold Schwarzenegger declares in an Op-Ed piece.
And the California governor says that granting amnesty to illegals is "anarchy.”
"We learned on 9/11 that not all those who cross our borders want to share in the American dream,” Schwarzenegger writes in the Los Angeles Times.
"A few want to replace it with a nightmare. If we don't know who is coming over our borders, we won't know what they might do. And in a post-Sept. 11 world, that is a risk we cannot take. Congress must strengthen our borders.”Criminalizing immigrants for coming into the U.S. – as some have called for – is not an answer, according to the governor.
"Instead, I urge Congress to get tough on those illegal immigrants who are a danger to society. If an illegal immigrant commits a serious crime, he must leave the country — one strike and you're out. No excuses, no delays.”
Schwarzenegger also said the U.S. should pass "a common-sense temporary worker program so that every person in our nation is documented. We can embrace the immigrant without endorsing illegal immigration.
"Granting citizenship to people who are here illegally is not just amnesty … it's anarchy. We are a country of immigrants, yes. But we are also a nation of laws.”
Finally, he said, "We should assimilate immigrants into the mainstream. We want immigrants to not just live in America but to live as Americans.”
Schwarzenegger, who said "I don't just talk about immigrants — I am an immigrant,” concludes: "This is the time for a permanent solution to our broken immigration system. This is the chance to again become a country of immigrants and a nation of laws.”
The leftist media have tried to portray this weekend’s massive protests against House measures to curtail illegal immigration as the uprising of “The Other America”: forgotten, humble, hidden Hispanic members of the working poor simply demanding their “rights.” As events spanned from California to Detroit, Phoenix to Washington, D.C., the media kept up its anti-enforcement drumbeat. Although some have credited Latino DJs for the 500,000-strong illegal immigrant turnout in Los Angeles alone – and some credit is deserved – the real legwork was done by a more eclectic group of organizations: leftist labor unions, George Soros-funded agitators, Open Borders lobbyists, Roman Catholic clergy, and teachers unions.
Los Angeles predictably had the largest turnout – and the most disruptive. Half-a-million people crowded the streets demanding the “right” to flaunt this nation’s immigration laws, and underage students ran onto a California freeway, risking their lives and shutting down interstate traffic.
Andres Jiminez, director of the University of California's California Policy Research Center, told the media, “It's not only Latinos who are marching in the streets, its unions too: firefighters, farm workers and Hispanic students who had thought of U.S. law as protecting them and are now starting to see it as a threat to their future.”
He was right about this much: Latino organizations did not act alone. The media has failed to report that organized labor directed the illegals and minors. The L.A. Times revealed the rally’s “security” was handled by a union identified only as “Local 1877.” That would be local 1877 of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the far-Left union founded by New Left radical Andrew Stern, which called for the withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq in June 2004 and worked in concert with Ted Kennedy to roll back anti-terrorist Homeland Security measures. According to the L.A. Times, the SEIU’s goons kindly helped “herd marchers along the route.” That was not the extent of SEIU’s help, though. The union also “coordinated the more than 100 buses that dropped off marchers from throughout California, Las Vegas and a few Southwestern cities.”
In other words, the massive rally against Homeland Security – since that is what gaining control of America’s borders would promote – was staged by a leftist labor union and staffed primarily with illegal immigrants.
SEIU did not work alone in this. It was aided by other radical or left-wing political pressure groups, including:
· Southern California Human Rights Network (SCHRN), whose members are apparently affiliated with the International Socialist Organization. SCHRN drafted a resolution in Orange County declaring, “We believe that no human is illegal and oppose the criminalization, dehumanization, and exploitation of migrants, immigrants and or economic and political refugees, by means of media, legislation, ideology, rhetoric, etc. [This] includes augmenting border patrol units, commissioning other law enforcement agencies to work in conjunction with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and [includes] such policies as the Central American Free Trade Agreement, the North American Free Trade Agreement, and other policies that exploit the indigenous, peasantry, and environments of countries abroad.” In other words, capitalism and any form of immigration laws are exploitative.
· Pomona Day Labor Center, which helps employers hire “day laborers.” One must presume this organization knows its employees are illegals.
· Central American Resource Center, which advocates for illegals and lobbies for the government to make a “‘presumption’ of hardship” for and grant “permanent residency” to Central American illegals.
· Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA), founded in 1986 to “get as many people as possible through the amnesty program established” by Ronald Reagan.
The cause is being helped in another way by the Los Angeles Unified School District – where more than 25,000 walked out of classes: through taxpayer-subsidized lobbying courses. According to the district, students “would remain in their home rooms through the day for discussions on the immigration issue, how to influence lawmakers and the consequences of walkouts, said Rowena Lagrosa, executive officer for educational service.” (Emphasis added.)
Michelle Malkin obtained a copy of a letter Lagrosa wrote Monday to the students of the school district stating LAUSD would chauffer students to high school after they protested on the freeway. The letter states after the rally, the district “will provide buses to return students to schools when appropriate.” Moreover, “we will do everything we can to ensure that those students who do leave the campus are supervised as they leave the campus.”
Naturally, the leftist groups, illegals, and teachers unions could count on the media to cover for them. Mickey Kaus pointed out in Slate that the L.A. Times wrapped the protestors in the American flag, erasing all references to the Mexican standard, although the Mexican flag was hoisted at least as often in the crowd as Old Glory.
Gone from the media coverage, too, was mention that these protests had all the hallmarks of leftist riots of bygone days. Although depicted as nonviolent and mainstream, FrontPage Magazine columnist Tammy Bruce noted Hispanic protestors burned American flags at the L.A. rallies. Michelle Malkin has preserved some of the protestors’ other extremist messages. L.A. protestors ran onto freeways and threw rocks and bottles. LAPD Chief William Bratton – who put his men on tactical alert – said the protestors diverted police resources from fighting crime in the City of Angels. Fights broke out at protests in Watsonville, CA, and police arrested 21 minors and three adults for riotous behavior, including assaulting a police officer, in Escondido, CA.
On Monday, the “mainstream media” reported some 300 clergy met near the Capitol for a prayer service to support illegal immigrants. The rally flyer claims these concerns sacerdotal ministers objected to legislation that would “Deny basic civil rights to immigrants.” No outlet reported this meeting was organized by the far-Left Center for Community Change, a member of the United for Peace and Justice coalition, headed by atheist and Marxist Leslie Cagan. On the CCC Board of Directors are:
CCC is generously funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Ford Foundation, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the George Soros-funded Open Society Institute, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Tides Foundation.
Other event sponsors include:
The event was another attempt for the Left to wrap its message in clerical garb, this time executed successfully.
Also on Monday, several hundred underage students in Phoenix staged a walkout that culminated with protests at the state Capitol. Underreported was the role played in the rallies by MEChA, a radical Hispanic organization demanding the U.S. government give the Southwestern portion of the United States “back” to Mexican-Americans for the establishment of a new state called Aztlan. MEChA promotes its agenda alongside the National Council of La Raza, Mexican-American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF), and the American Friends Service Committee.
A sense of MEChA-like entitlement pervaded the entire rally, as an illegal alien told the media:
I'm not a criminal. I'm a good person and I deserve a quality education. That's why I'm here. To show that I'm willing to work toward that goal and that I've earned that right.
She did not elaborate on how she “earned” the “right” to illegally cross the border and access taxpayer-subsidized services restricted to U.S. citizens.
Last Friday, tens of thousand of Georgians, including not a few illegals, staged a “sick-in” to protest a bill that passed the state house the day before. CNN reported, “That bill, which has yet to gain Senate approval, would deny state services to adults living in the U.S. illegally and impose a five percent surcharge on wire transfers from illegal immigrants.” Not only do immigrants have the “right” to live in Georgia illegally and collect government services, they also have the “right” to use Western Union without paying an extra five cents on the dollar. That’s some willingness to contribute to one’s home country. These are supposedly the minority members willing to work tirelessly to help their host country at jobs no one wants.
FrontPage Magazine columnist Allan Wall – whose National Guard brigade recently returned from serving our country in Iraq – has pointed out the Georgia protest’s organizer, Teodoro Maus, acted as Mexico’s consul general in Atlanta for 12 years. During that time, this Mexican government official protested Georgia’s declaration of English as the state’s official language, opposed a talk show host who supported border enforcement, and petitioned the Peach State to issue drivers licenses to illegals. Maus’ involvement raises the question whether Friday’s unofficial labor strike had the sanction of the Mexican government.
Yesterday, area school districts estimated 4,000 students walked out in Dallas-Ft. Worth alone, staging a violent and disruptive rally to sanctify their illicit status.
Media accounts specify: “At Kiest Park, about 1,500 students from Dallas and Grand Prairie schools demonstrated. Dallas police outfitted in riot gear moved in on the crowd after some of the students started throwing rocks and bottles at a woman who staged a one-person counterprotest.” (Emphasis ours.)
Protestor Francisco Rojas, speaking in Spanish, told The Dallas Morning News, “It's like an animal that's waking from many years of sleep. We are very strong, and right now is our opportunity.”
These minor students then processed into a city council meeting, waving Mexican and El Salvadoran flags. To her credit, Councilwoman Elba Garcia courageously commandeered a police PA system to tell the truants to go back to school (where Dallas school officials said this week’s walkouts will be an unexcused absence).The warning came too late for one girl, whose hand was severed as a result of an accident that took place at the walkout.
Undeterred by the violence and harm done to their children’s education, leaders in the Open Borders Lobby set out plotting their next move. “At a dinner meeting of the Latino group LULAC, leaders announced a major rally on April 9. ‘We are going to be having, hopefully it will be the largest civil rights demonstration in the history of Dallas, Texas – 100,000-plus,’ said LULAC representative Domingo Garcia.”
No word on how many lone women will be battered the next time Mexican citizens exercise American First Amendment rights.
These massive gatherings of illegals, who denounced their government unmolested by police or immigration officials, had an immediate impact – on legislation and on border security.
Reporter Sara Carter of the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin says since these protests, border patrol agents have reported an explosion in illegal crossings from Mexicans (and others) keenly observing the Senate debate and emboldened by same. Some were under the impression amnesty had already been granted and hoped to be the first to take part in the second California Gold Rush. 
The rallies had a political impact, too. Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-CO, stated on Monday:
The immigration rallies over this weekend and today show how disordered our immigration system has become. For years, the government has turned a blind eye to illegal aliens who break into this country. It isn’t any wonder that illegal aliens now act as if they are entitled to the rights and privileges of citizenship.
As a sign of their political impact, Republicans immediately began discussing the potential threat their political careers face from an Hispanic backlash, should they have the temerity to pretend the United States is a sovereign nation with definable political boundaries.
Leftists and illegals began their massive protest – because they saw U.S. law “as a threat to their future” – the same day the Senate Judiciary Committee passed a bill that would allow illegals to attain American citizenship without facing deportation by a 12-6 vote. John McCain joined forces with Ted Kennedy to promote this amnesty measure. “It is not amnesty,” said Ted Kennedy, who has a 41-year history of fibbing about immigration bills.
The Judiciary Committee yesterday approved Dick Durbin’s amendment granting amnesty to individuals and non-profits that provide non-emergency aid to illegal immigrants. The committee had previously approved Durbin’s amendment to drop illegal immigration to a misdemeanor offense.
These measures are at odds with the will of the American people. According to the Associated Press, 59 percent of Americans oppose laws allowing illegal immigrants to apply for guest worker status, and 62 percent oppose easing the path to U.S. citizenship for those who are here illegally.
Americans know illegal immigrants account for nearly one-third of all inmates in federal prisons and add millions of dollars to their tax load every year. Even Mother Jones magazine exposed the health dangers posed to border towns throughout America, as a result of uninsured illegals bankrupting local hospitals – six years ago.
Americans cannot comprehend why Congress feels a need to add a guest worker program to mollify these disruptive, violent, lawbreaking protestors, who are occasionally political radicals and overwhelmingly individuals who are in violation of U.S. immigration law. What makes Congressmen think those whose first action in this country was to break the law will suddenly obey their newest futile measure?
These illegals claimed they marched to demand their “rights.” Those would amount to the right to a speedy trial, followed by rapid deportation. Illegal aliens have no additional rights under our Constitutional system, nor should they be given any. A more inspired leadership, with a requisite number of border patrol agents and paddy wagons, would have made these massive rallies an instructive object lesson in the enforcement of immigration law. Instead, political cowardice has transformed them into international exhibits of American impotence and paralysis.
Local news reported that Georgia Governor Perdue intends to read every word of this bill before signing it. Nevertheless Georgia legislators have taken a stance saying this was the toughest state immigration bill in the nation so far, that they worked diligently to make sure it complied with federal legislation.
"Immigration Bill Heads for Perdue
"PERHAPS THIS IS A SOLUTION TO THE ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION PROBLEM
Let's noodle this illegal immigration thing through for a minute. Why are these gate-crashers coming to America? Well, because nobody's stopping them, of course, but why do they want to be here? Hint: It's not to worship God as they chose, nor is it to have the right to free speech. It's economics. They come here because they have little hope of improving their lives where they live. History shows that free enterprise and capitalism do more to lift people out of despair and poverty than any other economic system. In spite of the best efforts of the socialist left in this country, free enterprise still pretty much powers our growing economy. Our low unemployment rate is the envy of the rest of the world.
So .. what if we were to crank up the economic engine in the United States to previously unheard of levels? What if the job-creation machine went into overdrive? What could bring this about? Well, how about a new tax code ( http://fairtax.org/ ) that completely removed all taxes from business and labor? What if such a tax code made America the world's number one tax haven for businesses? What if companies and manufacturing concerns from around the world started to make their plans to move manufacturing, production and distribution facilities into the United States to take advantage of our tax structure?
Two things would happen. First, job growth would be such in this country that we would have no problem at all assimilating the 11 to 12 million illegal aliens that now reside here. Remember, as I told you yesterday, these people are here to stay. They aren't going anywhere.
Secondly, other countries would start to become very alarmed by the drain of commerce to the United States. They would be unable to compete in a global economy with a country that places absolutely no tax component on labor or businesses. Oh, to be sure, these countries would start howling to the United Nations and to the European Union about "unfair tax competition" from those nasty Americans. Our response would be simple. You aren't going to beat us, so why don't you join us? Industrialized nations that want to maintain any significant portion of their manufacturing base would be compelled to play the same game America is playing. Understand, please, that these countries would have no choice. What are they going to do? Are they going to continue to tax the puddin' out of their own manufacturing base while the United States sits there across the pond, or north of the border, inviting all the world to come play in our tax-free business environment? Sooner or later, they have to play the game; and when they do it would usher in a new era of freedom and economic growth for the people of those countries. No longer would they have to leave their homes to find the opportunities they desire. The opportunities would come to them.
Now all we have to do is figure out such a tax system. Hmmmmmmm."
Powerlineblog.com referred to this systematic dissection of Associated Press's "reporting" in which Big Lizards blog rips them a new one. Since so much of the MSM depends on AP it might be good to read about what's being churned out as facts.
"Marines Notice Things
By Ralph Kenney Bennett
Source Tech Central Station Daily
"Hardened by the bitter experience of ambushes, roadside bombs and snipers, Marines on patrol in Iraq notice things.
They have to.
When they move through a village they size up groups congregated at corners or storefront doors. They scan faces. Are they welcomed? Feared? Ignored? They make mental notes and tuck away images that might be helpful on the next patrol.
They notice particular houses or buildings, walls or clumps of trees, irrigation ditches, junked cars. They notice things. Their lives depend on it
The men of Company I, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, are no different. Their personal radars were scanning, scanning as they patrolled the dusty little town of Al Hasa back in January.
That's when they noticed something at a particular house. That's why they showed up at that house last week.
They roared up in a couple of amphibious assault vehicles.
But they didn't kick down the door. They knocked.
The family inside was surprised, but they weren't frightened. Greetings were exchanged. The small group of Marines seemed to be holding back smiles and anxious to get to the point.
While on that patrol back in January they had noticed this large Iraqi family and particularly the cute little girl propped awkwardly in a big old rusty adult wheelchair. So, well... a bunch of the guys got together back at Camp Smitty and...
The Marines unloaded a shiny new pediatric wheelchair from one of their vehicles and rolled it into the house.
The little girl had suffered a severe spinal injury in a car accident two years ago. The old wheelchair was the best the family could do for her.
Until the Marines came.
The family's faces lit up with the smiles. The incredulous father picked up his daughter and immediately placed her in the new wheelchair. He shook the Marines' hands, saying "Thank you," again and again.
"They seemed pretty happy about it," said Cpl. Matthew Rivera.
"We knew we had to help out in some way," said Staff Sgt. Charles Evers.
The Marines didn't stay long. There were smiles and a few tears and then they jumped back into their assault vehicles and headed back to Camp Smitty.
I very much doubt you read about this little incident in your local paper, or heard about it on the TV news. I happened to spot it on one of my favorite military blogs -- www.Blackfive.net -- which tirelessly looks for things down in the nap of the earth in this war.
If you read Blackfive and some of the other "milblogs" you'd know that there have been thousands of such selfless little acts of humanity on the part of our military in Iraq and Afghanistan.
I felt great pride when I heard about this little visit to an Iraqi house. There's something about these Marines, these infidels, these Americans. Something special. And good. And right.
A lot of us forget or ignore such acts. But one Iraqi family won't.
How many times have you wanted to access a site but didn't want to go through the hassle of signing up, having your personal information "out there" for potential identity theft???
Can't remember where I found information about this site, but pretty useful, downright cool.
BugMeNot.com Bypass compulsory registrations on sites.
U.S. Redneck Special Forces (USRSF)
The Pentagon announced today the formation of a new 500 man elite fighting
unit called the US REDNECK SPECIAL FORCES (USRSF). These North Carolina,
Kentucky, West Virginia, Mississippi, Missouri, Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia,
Texas and Tennessee boys will be dropped into Iraq and have been given the
following facts about Terrorists:
1. The season opened today.
2. There is no limit.
3. They taste just like chicken.
4. They don't like beer, pickups, country music or Jesus.
5. They are DIRECTLY RESPONSIBLE for the death of Dale Earnhardt.
This mess in Iraq should be OVER IN A WEEK.
A friend sent me this from another blog, New Media Alliance. Noooooo bias ..... noooo agenda whatsoever. Who cares about accurate testimony from Saddam's General Sada who flew them out?????
Face it, the MSM considers us all mushrooms .... keep us in the dark and feed us BS.
Whatever it takes to BUY a vote ............... which is just what we need for border security.
Go here and sign up if you're concerned about illegals and border security. Sen.Frist is listening and trying to do something about it.
"Clinton vows to block bill criminalizing illegal immigrants
By BETH FOUHY
AP Political Writer
March 22, 2006, 2:51 PM EST
NEW YORK -- Invoking Biblical themes, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton joined immigration advocates Wednesday to vow and block legislation seeking to criminalize undocumented immigrants.
Clinton, a potential 2008 presidential candidate and relative latecomer to the immigration debate, made her remarks as the Senate prepares to take up the matter next week.
Clinton renewed her pledge to oppose a bill passed in December by the House that would make unlawful presence in the United States _ currently a civil offense _ a felony. The Senate is set to consider a version of that legislation, as well as several other bills seeking to address the seemingly intractable issue of immigration reform.
Surrounded by a multicultural coalition of New York immigration advocates, Clinton blasted the House bill as "mean-spirited" and said it flew in the face of Republicans' stated support for faith and values.
"It is certainly not in keeping with my understanding of the Scriptures," Clinton said, "because this bill would literally criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself."
Clinton did not specifically endorse any competing legislation, including a bill co-authored by Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) and another by Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), saying she hoped the Senate Judiciary Committee would produce a compromise incorporating the best elements of all the bills and would remove the harsh penalties contained in the House measure.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) has said the Senate will take up his proposal to tighten borders and punish employers who hire illegal immigrants if the Judiciary Committee doesn't complete a broader bill by next week."............
"Moody's is looking at downgrading the New York Times' credit rating. The Times' stock is doing badly. And other newspapers are in trouble, too -- the staff of the San Jose Mercury News has resorted to launching a "save our paper" website.
These certainly look like dark days for the newspaper industry generally. ABC's Michael Malone writes:
It was just a year ago that I predicted -- to considerable consternation and censure from the press -- that most major newspapers would be dead or dying by the end of this decade. Apparently, I was being conservative.
As I look around California, for example, I see the San Francisco Chronicle turning into the Daily Worker for baby boomers, the Los Angeles Times selecting stories based on political considerations, and now, the only real newspaper of any size left, the Mercury News, apparently orphaned. Meanwhile, McClatchy's strategy appears to be that of snatching up small-town papers, the last redoubt of daily print journalism. But that is just buying time before Yahoo and Google start putting local Little League box scores online.
Of course, Malone warns new media darlings, like MySpace, that they're likely to be next, victims of changing technology and fickle tastes on the part of a public that -- as it didn't in the halcyon days of the newspaper business -- has lots of choices.
Unlike, I suppose, a few bloggers I'm not cheering the demise of newspapers. I do think that the newspaper industry has dug its own grave through bias, disrespect for its audience, and simpleminded costcutting efforts that have seriously damaged its core competency (and killer app) -- actual gathering and reporting of truthful, accurate, hard news. But I don't think it's too late for imaginative newspapers to save themselves.
What would a new-era newspaper look like?
First, I think I'd skip the "paper" part. I've visited a lot of newspaper offices, and many of them proudly display the printing presses that produce their product, just as older newsmen often glory in the title of "ink-stained wretch." But their product isn't paper (in fact, for those of us who recycle, the paper is a drawback, not a plus, at least until it's time to pack things for a move). Their product is information. Paper is just an increasingly obsolete delivery platform. It's expensive, and on the way out. Get rid of it, or start a new "paper" without it.
Second, I'd put some of the money I saved by abandoning delivery trucks, printing presses, and the like into hiring reporters and writers, who have been the object of a lot of cost-cutting over the past couple of decades. And I'd expect a broader range of competency: My reporters would also all be photographers, equipped with digital cameras, and videographers, shooting clips of video that could be placed on the website along with their stories. This isn't asking too much, really. The world is full of people who can write and take pictures. I've heard editors at existing newspapers who doubt that their reporters could do this sort of thing, but if so, they need better reporters. I'd tell them to learn, or seek employment elsewhere. It's not that hard. This sort of approach might create union problems, which often forbid reporters from doing the job of photographers or vice versa; I'd tell the unions to go visit the Buggy Whip Museum and ponder the fate of work rules in that industry. (See examples of what I'm talking about in the video department here and -- from my local newspaper, complete with commercials -- here).
Third, I'd stop insulting readers. As Malone notes, many newspapers lean left; they're out of touch, as numerous surveys demonstrate, with the attitudes of most Americans. Often, like George Clooney (spokesman for another declining industry), they celebrate this disconnect. They shouldn't. People don't like being preached to, or manipulated, and they are increasingly unwilling to pay for that now that they have alternatives. So stop; give them the news, with as little bias as possible.
Fourth, I'd get readers involved. I'd incorporate readers and bloggers into the reporting, fact-checking, and revision of news stories. I'd be generous about handing out credit, too -- people will do a lot for a little bit of ego gratification. With digital cameras, cameraphones, etc., all over, there's usually somebody on the scene when something happens. I'd take advantage of that. I'd also take advantage of readers with special expertise in particular areas -- in fact, I'd build a roster of those people and use them as color commentators on stories in their areas. If union rules interfered, well, see above.
The bottom line is that there's plenty of market space for the news business, so long as it sticks to its core competencies of actually, you know, reporting news accurately and well. But the Daily Planet model of newspapers -- or, worse yet, the model shown in today's New York Times or San Francisco Chronicle, places where behavior that Perry White would never have tolerated is, sadly, routine -- is on its last legs. There's no reason that newspapers can't remain competitive -- no reason, at least, outside their own management. "
Found a link to this on another site. She says it so well ... a faction which degrades women so much that they're viewed lesser important than animals ...... embraces girl tactics for fighting their battles.
Makes you wonder if they're secure with their gender "identities" and preferences for homo sapiens.
"Anyone who has ever been in a schoolyard can see that boys and girls deal with conflict in diametrically different ways. When boys have a problem with each other, the cause of the feud is usually well known to both parties, and they tend to confront one another directly, often physically. The worst insult a boy can endure is to be told that he fights like a girl. While such battles can be violent, they are also short-lived. The victor often offers his hand and helps the defeated boy from the ground. More often then not, the fight is forgotten within days and the boys resume their friendship as if nothing had ever happened.
Girls, on the other hand, fight more subversive battles. Instead of confronting one another directly, they will wage a covert war by spreading rumors and ostracizing the object of their current anger. Very often, one party has no idea what caused the rift and may not even know that there is a war until she is blindsided by an unexpected attack, usually coming from another girl claiming to be her friend. Girls also tend to hold grudges and feuds can last for an interminable length of time. The attacks are often personal and aimed at emotional vulnerabilities as opposed to physical ones. Any parent of a middle-school age daughter can tell you that the focus of girls in grades 5-8 is to make each other miserable, and they are very good at it.
The Western way of war is rooted in the male style of fighting and is very much the way the United States has dealt with defeated enemies in the past. Confront them directly, hit them hard, and then give them the helping hand to rebuild and become an ally. Warfare has a set of rules, both written and unwritten, and there is the unspoken understanding that both sides will fight “like gentlemen.” An enemy who refuses to fight that way is often viewed as weak and too scared to “come out and fight like men.” In other words, they fight around the edges like girls.
The Global War on Terrorism is just such a war. The vast majority of Westerners, including our governments, had no idea that we have been in this war for decades. What we mistook as harmless rhetoric was really brainwashing of entire generations who were fed lies and propaganda. Despite previous smaller attacks, on 9-11 most Americans were genuinely bewildered that anyone could hate us so much and that anyone would hit us in such a “sneaky” way. Like a girl suddenly shunned by her friends, we weren’t even sure what we had done to raise such ire. Most experts agree that winning this war will require a paradigm shift in how we approach such an enemy. While there is no doubt that we can win the battles while engaged in open warfare, the military is struggling to understand this new enemy’s methods and how to tackle their shadow fighting. It is hard for soldiers brought up in the Western way of war to understand an enemy who refuses to confront them directly. But perhaps the key has been before us all the time. We need only look to the schoolyard and watch girls fight. It is somewhat ironic that a radical Islamic culture, which has so little respect for women, emulates their fighting style.
Western countries are hampered in this type of war since we will never stoop to purposeful targeting of innocents or using religious buildings as shields or targets. Moreover, we cannot follow our mothers’ advice to “ignore bullies and they will leave us alone.” Like most bullies, they will not go away until they get a sound thrashing, after which they will eventually self-destruct. The best thing we can do is to continue our rebuilding efforts, focus on the Iraqis and Afghanis who honestly want to build a better society, destroy the terrorists wherever they dare to show their faces and expose their treachery for the whole world to see.
As they mature, most girls learn to deal with conflict in more open ways. Those that do not find that their deceitful tactics backfire and they are soon ostracized. Girls break off the destructive friendships and concentrate on those that are mutually supportive. We are seeing this right now in Iraq. As terrorists try their best to incite civil war by targeting large groups of innocents, the Iraqis have shown remarkable restraint and have not succumbed to the temptation to target a scapegoat. Similarly, Afghanistan has continued its march towards democracy, shaking off those whole would distract them from this goal.
In both cases the terrorists’ tactics have backfired and turned public support against them. This is a sure sign that Afghanistan and Iraq are maturing. Their resoluteness is not lost on the rest of the Middles East and we are already seeing signs that other countries will follow their examples. Soon the terrorists will find themselves sitting alone at the lunch table wondering where all their “friends” went. "
Sharon Tosi Moore is a major in the U.S. Army Reserves. She is co-author of the forthcoming book Fresh from the Fight, and is a doctoral candidate at Leeds University in the U.K. The views expressed are her own. "
All on the left owe President Bush and his administration a huge public apology but am betting no one is ADULT enough to step up to admit they were wrong in their representations.
My gut has always said there's a strong Saddam/WMD/al Qaida connection so that's why I've stubbornly dug in, held my ground.
The MSM, Democrats who knew the truth in the first place because of intelligence briefings, all need to suck up big time on this one but they won't because it doesn't further their leftist not so hidden agenda.
Think Karl Marx who said "repeat a lie often enough and it becomes the truth."Seemed to work well before the internet and bloggers.
Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Lt. Gen. Tom McInerney, the co-author with Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely on their book Endgame: The Blueprint for Victory in the War on Terror. He is a retired Air Force Fighter Pilot who has been a Fox News Military Analyst for the last four and a half years and continues to appear regularly on Fox. He just returned from his second visit to Iraq in December, 2005.
FP: Lt. Gen. Tom McInerney, welcome to Frontpage Interview.
McInerney: Thank you Jamie.
FP: The released audiotapes of Saddam Hussein's conversations with his key officials are turning up more and more evidence of WMDs and the Osama connection. The documents released by the U.S. government last Wednesday, for instance, reveal more about the Saddam-Al Qaeda link. Can you shed some light on this for us?
This just supports the 12 hours of tapes we heard of Saddam Hussein’s that discussed using proxies (Al Qaeda) to attack the US with WMD i.e. nuclear or biological. The latest release has pictures of Zarqawi while he was in Iraq prior to our liberation. It is obvious that he was living there as a sanctuary after he left Afghanistan. Stephen
Hayes of the Weekly Standard has done a superb job in describing this relationship in great detail in several articles and TV appearances on Fox News. In addition the CIA director George Tenet confirmed this prior to the liberation of Iraq as did Under Secretary Doug Feith in a memo on Al Qaeda’s involvement with Iraq prior to hostilities. However some people are still in denial even with the latest release as it gets in the way of their agenda.
FP: It appears that many people also remain in denial about the WMD issue. The released audiotapes reveal Saddam Hussein and his key officials discussing their WMD programs from the mid-1990s onwards, correct?
McInerney: Yes, Jamie. It was a fascinating experience to see the transcripts of Saddam’s conversations. He discussed hiding WMDs from the UN inspectors and knowing where the inspectors were going to go in advance. He discussed their efforts to develop Plasma Enrichment for nuclear weapons totally unknown to the UN inspectors.
But the most telling to me was the conversation between Tariq Aziz his foreign minister and Saddam in which they discussed having proxies implant nuclear and biological weapons in US cities. They concluded that Iraq would be blamed for an explosion but not biological as they could use deception and blame US facility ( Ft Dietrick) which makes me conclude that Iraq was responsible for the anthrax attack in US less than 30 days after 9/11.
The FBI has not determined who did it although they tried to charge unsuccessfully a former Ft Dietrick employee. It is obvious that we should aggressively be translating the remaining 3,000 hours of tapes!
FP: So the evidence appears to suggest the Russians moved the WMD’s out of Iraq, correct?
McInerney: Yes -- to three locations in Syria and one in Lebanon (Beka Valley) in the Sept – Dec 2002 time frame. This information was provided by Jack Shaw, the former Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for international technology security. He charged that Saddam’s stockpiles of WMDs were moved by a Russian Spetznatz team headed by Yevgeny Primakov, the former Russian Intelligence Chief, who came to Iraq in December 2002 to supervise the final cleanup.
Mr. Shaw found this out through a meeting in London with the head of MI–6 (UK CIA), the Ukrainian Intelligence Chief and others in the summer of 2003. The Ukrainians were very close and supportive of the Russians at that time.
McInerney: The President is being ill served by his Intelligence staff. In some cases the diplomats don’t want the world to know this as the three primary violators were Russia, China and France -- all permanent members of the UN Security Council and whom they need to deal with Iran and future contingencies in the war on terror. I assume he did not want to trash our future “allies.” However, he directed in mid-Feb that they all be released and I understand that it is imminent.
FP: Your book instructs that we must go after the state sponsors of terrorism in order to win the terror war. You even argue that some nations might have to be invaded by U.S. forces. Can you talk a bit about this strategy and what it entails?
McInerney: There existed a Web of Terror group of nations before 9/11. They were Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and North Korea. Three have been removed two by regime change and Libya voluntarily. Iran is now our most serious threat and the regime must be changed -- but I would use the Afghanistan model using covert operations with massive coalition air support. We should let the Iranian people take back their country.
We are winning but it is a tough fight. 50 million people are now free in Afghanistan and Iraq and Saddam Hussein is on trial and Osama bin Laden is in hiding as are his aides moving every 3-6 hours. We still must change the regimes in Syria and Iran but I would use the Afghan model and let the Syrian and Iranian people take their countries back assisting them covertly. In addition Saudi Arabia must stop funding the expansion of this extreme form of Islam called Wahabiism which is driving the Extremists with funding and ideology
FP: Tom McInerney, thank you for joining us today.
McInerney: Thank you. "
Among the most moving scenes in film history occurs in "To Kill a Mockingbird," in which the little girl, Scout, who has been watching her lawyer/father plead for the life of a falsely accused black man in the old South, is exhorted by an elderly black spectator in the gallery to rise to her feet. "Your father is passing," he explains.
She began by describing the struggle in which we are engaged as one between "two opposites, between two eras." It is a clash, she said, "between civilization and backwardness, between the civilized and the primitive, between barbarity and rationality. It is a clash between freedom and oppression, between democracy and dictatorship. It is a clash between human rights on the one hand, and the violation of those rights on the other hand . . . "
Dr. Al-Khouli was clearly taken aback.
Are you saying, the host asked, "that what is happening today is a clash between the culture of the West and the backwardness and ignorance of the Muslims?"
"Yes," replied Sultan, "that is what I mean."
She wasn't finished. Not by a mile. She went on to scorn Muslim clerics who say out of one side of their mouths that Islam forbids them to offend the beliefs of others, and yet characterize Christians and Jews as "those who incur Allah's wrath" or as apes and pigs. She paused to consider the common Islamic description of Jews and Christians as "People of the Book."
"They are not the 'People of the Book,' they are people of many books. All the useful scientific books that you have today are theirs, the fruit of their tree and creative thinking."
Sultan then forthrightly explained that she herself is neither Muslim, Christian nor Jew, but simply a secular human being. She does not believe in the supernatural, but respects the right of others to believe what they wish.
"Are you a heretic?" demanded Al-Khouli in triumphant tones. "You can say whatever you like," she replied. In an age that has brought us the Theo van Gogh assassination, deadly riots over a series of Danish newspaper cartoons, the Pym Fortune assassination, the death threats against Salman Rushdie, Hirsi Ali and Ibn Warraq, among many others, it requires truly remarkable courage to stare into the Al-Jazeera camera and calmly permit yourself to be labeled a heretic.
Sultan was raised as a pious Muslim, but her faith was shaken when she was studying medicine at the Aleppo University in northern Syria. As The New York Times reported, terrorists from the Muslim Brotherhood burst into her classroom in 1979 and shot her professor as she watched. "They shot hundreds of bullets into him, shouting, 'God is great.'" It was a turning point in her life. She eventually left her home and moved with her husband and children to the United States.
Sultan's debate is available on The Middle East Media Research Institute's website at www.memritv.org. MEMRI says that the video has already received 3 million hits since it first aired on Feb. 21, 2006.
Courage is among the rarest of virtues. Most people will not risk even the displeasure of their boss, far less their very lives, for something they believe in. Sultan doubtless speaks for millions of Muslims who similarly deplore the barbarism that has come to dominate large segments of the Muslim world. But without leadership like hers, they must feel besieged and beleaguered. Her heroic stand deserves our awe and deep respect. Stand up: Ms. Sultan is passing.
|"Arab-American Psychologist Wafa Sultan: There Is No Clash of Civilizations but a Clash between the Mentality of the Middle Ages and That of the 21st Century|
Following are excerpts from an interview with Arab-American psychologist Wafa Sultan. The interview was aired on Al-Jazeera TV on February 21, 2006.
Wafa Sultan: The clash we are witnessing around the world is not a clash of religions, or a clash of civilizations. It is a clash between two opposites, between two eras. It is a clash between a mentality that belongs to the Middle Ages and another mentality that belongs to the 21st century. It is a clash between civilization and backwardness, between the civilized and the primitive, between barbarity and rationality. It is a clash between freedom and oppression, between democracy and dictatorship. It is a clash between human rights, on the one hand, and the violation of these rights, on other hand. It is a clash between those who treat women like beasts, and those who treat them like human beings. What we see today is not a clash of civilizations. Civilizations do not clash, but compete.
Host: I understand from your words that what is happening today is a clash between the culture of the West, and the backwardness and ignorance of the Muslims?
Wafa Sultan: Yes, that is what I mean.
Host: Who came up with the concept of a clash of civilizations? Was it not Samuel Huntington? It was not Bin Laden. I would like to discuss this issue, if you don't mind...
Wafa Sultan: The Muslims are the ones who began using this expression. The Muslims are the ones who began the clash of civilizations. The Prophet of Islam said: "I was ordered to fight the people until they believe in Allah and His Messenger." When the Muslims divided the people into Muslims and non-Muslims, and called to fight the others until they believe in what they themselves believe, they started this clash, and began this war. In order to start this war, they must reexamine their Islamic books and curricula, which are full of calls for takfir and fighting the infidels.
My colleague has said that he never offends other people's beliefs. What civilization on the face of this earth allows him to call other people by names that they did not choose for themselves? Once, he calls them Ahl Al-Dhimma, another time he calls them the "People of the Book," and yet another time he compares them to apes and pigs, or he calls the Christians "those who incur Allah's wrath." Who told you that they are "People of the Book"? They are not the People of the Book, they are people of many books. All the useful scientific books that you have today are theirs, the fruit of their free and creative thinking. What gives you the right to call them "those who incur Allah's wrath," or "those who have gone astray," and then come here and say that your religion commands you to refrain from offending the beliefs of others?
I am not a Christian, a Muslim, or a Jew. I am a secular human being. I do not believe in the supernatural, but I respect others' right to believe in it.
Dr. Ibrahim Al-Khouli: Are you a heretic?
Wafa Sultan: You can say whatever you like. I am a secular human being who does not believe in the supernatural...
Dr. Ibrahim Al-Khouli: If you are a heretic, there is no point in rebuking you, since you have blasphemed against Islam, the Prophet, and the Koran...
Wafa Sultan: These are personal matters that do not concern you.
Wafa Sultan: Brother, you can believe in stones, as long as you don't throw them at me. You are free to worship whoever you want, but other people's beliefs are not your concern, whether they believe that the Messiah is God, son of Mary, or that Satan is God, son of Mary. Let people have their beliefs.
Wafa Sultan: The Jews have come from the tragedy (of the Holocaust), and forced the world to respect them, with their knowledge, not with their terror, with their work, not their crying and yelling. Humanity owes most of the discoveries and science of the 19th and 20th centuries to Jewish scientists. 15 million people, scattered throughout the world, united and won their rights through work and knowledge. We have not seen a single Jew blow himself up in a German restaurant. We have not seen a single Jew destroy a church. We have not seen a single Jew protest by killing people. The Muslims have turned three Buddha statues into rubble. We have not seen a single Buddhist burn down a Mosque, kill a Muslim, or burn down an embassy. Only the Muslims defend their beliefs by burning down churches, killing people, and destroying embassies. This path will not yield any results. The Muslims must ask themselves what they can do for humankind, before they demand that humankind respect them."
BOSTON --U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia railed against the era of the "judge-moralist," saying judges are no better qualified than "Joe Sixpack" to decide moral questions such as abortion and gay marriage.
"Anyone who thinks the country's most prominent lawyers reflect the views of the people needs a reality check," he said during a speech to New England School of Law students and faculty at a Law Day banquet on Wednesday night.
The 70-year-old justice said the public, through elected Legislatures -- not the courts -- should decide watershed questions such as the legality of abortion."........
....... "He said code words such as "mainstream" and "moderate" are now used to describe liberal judicial nominees.
"What is a moderate interpretation of (the Constitution)? Halfway between what it says and halfway between what you want it to say?" he said." .................
The first batch of captured documents from pre-war Iraq and Afghanistan are now available online.
by Stephen F. Hayes
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) has created a website ( http://fmso.leavenworth.army.mil/products-docex.htm#iraq ) where it will post documents captured in postwar Afghanistan and Iraq. The website is hosted by the Foreign Military Studies Office Joint Reserve Intelligence Center at Fort Leavenworth and will be updated continuously with new documents.
The first batch of materials, released late Wednesday, includes nine documents captured in connection with Operation Iraqi Freedom and 28 documents previously released on February 14, 2006, in conjunction with a study of those documents conducted by analysts at West Point. Sources on Capitol Hill and within the intelligence community tell The Weekly Standard that hundreds of new documents will be made available in the coming days, including 50-60 hours of audiotapes from the Iraqi regime.
ODNI officials will concentrate their early efforts on making available audiotapes and videotapes that have come from the former Iraqi regime. Twenty-five Arabic language translators will be hired to review these recordings for potentially sensitive information before they are posted. According to officials familiar with the DOCEX program, the U.S. government has in its possession more than 3,000 hours of recordings from the Iraqi regime. Among the collection: recordings of meetings between Saddam Hussein and other regime leaders; videotapes of speeches that Saddam thought would be important; audio and video of Saddam's meetings with foreign leaders; videotapes from conferences sponsored by the regime; and even videotapes of regime-sponsored brutality.
Materials made public in the first wave of the release will be those least likely to raise objections from the intelligence community and U.S. allies. Negroponte plans to include many of the documents labeled "NIV"--for No Intelligence Value--in this first group of materials.
But Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, insists that documents relevant to the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003 will be released in short order. "There may be many documents that relate to their WMD programs. Those should be released," says Hoekstra. "Same thing with links to terrorism."
Among that next batch may be the approximately 700 documents that served as the foundation for a fascinating study by the Joint Forces Command in Norfolk, Virginia. Analysts from the Institute for Defense Analysis reviewed thousands of documents for that two-year study of the Iraq War from the perspective of Iraqis. Declassified excerpts of their final report were published in a highly illuminating article in the forthcoming issue of Foreign Affairs. And the full report will be published as a book in the coming months.
It is hard to say what, exactly, to expect with the coming release of documents. There will be documents that lend support to those who opposed the war in Iraq and, to be sure, documents that bolster the case for those who supported the war.
Importantly, after years of questions about the threat from the Iraqi regime, we will now be able to get some answers. How close were the French and the Russians to the former Iraqi regime? What kind of information was being passed to the Iraqis on the eve of war in early 2003? What is the real story of Iraq's WMD programs? Why did Saddam's military leaders and scientists fabricate their reports on the progress of those programs? Which terrorist groups had an active presence in Baghdad? How many Palestinian Liberation Front jihadists did the Iraqi regime train each year? How effective was Saddam Hussein in deceiving UN inspectors throughout the 1990s? What did Saddam Hussein privately tell Yasser Arafat when the Palestinian leader came to Baghdad? And what were the Western targets of the "Blessed July" martyrdom operation that was being planned as U.S. troops crossed into Iraq in March 2003? " ................
Document Exploitation Documents
By Bassem Mroue
March 15, 2006
BAGHDAD -- Security officials foiled a plot that would have put hundreds of al Qaeda terrorists at guard posts around Baghdad's Green Zone, home to the U.S. and other foreign embassies as well as the Iraqi government, the interior minister said yesterday.
A senior Defense Ministry official confirmed the plot and said 421 al Qaeda men had been recruited to storm the U.S. and British embassies and take hostages. Several ranking Defense Ministry officials have been jailed in the plot, the official said on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information.
The disclosure came amid a wave of apparent reprisal slayings, with officials saying police had found the bodies of at least 87 persons killed in execution style over the previous 24 hours.
They included four men shot in the head and hanged from electricity pylons in Sadr City, a teeming Shi'ite slum in which 58 persons died and more than 200 were wounded in car bomb and mortar attacks on food markets over the weekend.
Interior Minister Bayan Jabr said in an interview that the al Qaeda recruits were one bureaucrat's signature away from being accepted into an Iraqi army battalion whose job is to control the gates and main squares in the Green Zone. The plot was discovered three weeks ago.
"You can imagine what could happen to a minister or an ambassador while passing through these gates when those terrorists are there," Mr. Jabr said in his office inside the 2-square-mile maze of concrete blast walls, concertina wire and checkpoints known as the Green Zone." .........
"Are we running out of oil? That's what the doomsayers say. We are past our (Hubbert's) peak and it's downhill from here. War, famine, pestilence, perhaps even extinction – those are the apocalyptic scenarios posited by folks predicting the oil age is over and the era of stringency is nigh.
Whether we are running out of oil or not, one thing we're certainly not short of is people who claim that we are. The good news about this bad news is that, historically, the doomsayers have always been wrong.
Almost since the first discoveries of oil in the U.S. in 1859, people have been saying we're running out. In 1874, the state geologist of the nation's leading oil producer, Pennsylvania, warned the U.S. had enough oil to last just four years. In 1914, the federal government said we had a ten-year supply. The government announced in 1940 that reserves would be depleted within a decade and a half. The Club of Rome made similar claims in the 1970s. President Carter famously predicted in 1977 that unless we made drastic cuts in our oil consumption, "Within ten years we would not be able to import enough oil — from any country, at any acceptable price." And so it goes today, where a slew of books and Web sites make fantastic claims about dwindling supplies of crude.
The chief problem with those who say the world is running out is that they have always looked at the issue the wrong way. Questions about energy supply shouldn't be thought of in terms of how much is available, but in terms of how good mankind is at finding and extracting it.
In the years after Col. Drake discovered oil at Titusville, Pennsylvania, on the eve of the Civil War, wildcatters could only drill down several hundred feet. If we were confined to relying solely upon the technology available in the 19th century — or, for that matter, the tools available just three decades ago — then yes, quite possibly we could be looking at the end of oil.
But we don't use those outmoded technologies. Advances in seismology and engineering have placed well within our grasp supplies of oil previously considered inaccessible. Today they are easily and economically recoverable.
Today's drills don't stop at a couple hundred feet. They bore miles into the earth. They travel laterally as well, so that a well dug in one spot might recover oil underneath locations miles away. Because of directional drilling, today one derrick can do the work that once took dozens, reducing the surface footprint of oil extraction.
Energy companies today can drill far offshore, too, in very deep water. They recover deposits that doomsayers of the past thought would be impossible to get at. Other technologies and advanced processes have boosted the recovery rates of fields thought to be tapped out.
The Kern River Field near Bakersfield, California, for instance, pumped nearly 30,000 barrels per day throughout much of the first decade of the 20th century. After 1910, production declined for the next 40 years. The field was nearly abandoned.
Innovations like pressurized steam and hot water injections changed that. Production at the Kern River field steadily ramped up after 1960, and the field has produced more than 125,000 barrels of oil per day since 1980. Recent estimates suggest Kern River still holds an additional one billion barrels of recoverable reserves.
That example mirrors the larger trend about oil. In 1970, experts believed the world had 612 billion barrels of proved reserves. Over the next three decades, more than 767 billion barrels would be pumped. Did we use up all the world's oil and then some? Hardly. Conservative estimates today place the world's provable oil reserves at 1.2 trillion barrels. New deposits of oil haven't been created. It's just that human ingenuity has come up with ways to get hard-to-reach deposits.
Expect that trend of increasing reserves to continue. Earlier this month the Department of Energy released a set of reports suggesting that enhanced 21st century oil recovery techniques might quadruple the amount of recoverable oil in the United States. DOE predicted that carbon sequestration technologies that inject carbon dioxide into oil reservoirs could soon add perhaps 89 billion barrels to the 21.4 billion barrels of proven reserves. More fantastically, government researchers found that "in the longer term, multiple advances in technology and widespread sequestration of industrial carbon dioxide could eventually add as much as 430 billion new barrels."
The same goes for Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil producer. The Saudis have 261 billion barrels of proven reserves. A year and a half ago, the Saudi energy minister suggested that number was way too small. "There are big chances to increase the kingdom's producible reserves by 200 billion barrels," he said. "This will come either through new discoveries or through increasing production from known deposits."
Questions about global oil supplies also must take into account unconventional sources of oil, like Canada's tar sands or shale oil in Colorado. These offer the promise of many hundreds of billions of additional barrels of oil that are currently extractable using today's technology. Processes for shale and tar sand oil generally are more expensive than conventional oil drilling. If crude oil were trading at $20 per barrel, they wouldn't make to produce. With the global price of crude trading above $60, however, they are attractive economically.
None of this is to suggest the world won't run out of oil one day. That could happen. It just isn't going to happen anytime soon.
Max Schulz is a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute. He can be reached at [email protected].
If we could get the sun to sign the "Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change" then we might be onto something to slow down global warming!! Yeah anything that has to do with the United Nations is really sensible and beneficial to all. NOT!!!
I doubt any irrefutable evidence that our sun burning warmer would ever sink in to any member of the UN.
By Deborah Zabarenko
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Sun-spawned cosmic storms that can play havoc with earthly power grids and orbiting satellites could be 50 percent stronger in the next 11-year solar cycle than in the last one, scientists said on Monday.
Using a new model that takes into account what happens under the sun's surface and data about previous solar cycles, astronomers offered a long-range forecast for solar activity that could start as soon as this year or as late as 2008.
They offered no specific predictions of solar storms, but they hope to formulate early warnings that will give power companies, satellite operators and others on and around Earth a few days to prepare.
"This prediction of an active solar cycle suggests we're potentially looking at more communications disruptions, more satellite failures, possible disruptions of electrical grids and blackouts, more dangerous conditions for astronauts," said Richard Behnke of the Upper Atmosphere Research Section at the National Science Foundation."..........
This is so well written ..... it pulls together a large highly important picture into a capsule.
But Islamists need not consolidate a great-power imperial core to exert influence and expand their reach. Instead of focusing on uniting a modern Caliphate in areas outside of the West, the more effective strategy for Islamists may be to nurture the growth of the Caliphate within the West. Demography, as Mark Steyn recently observed in an essay for the New Criterion (reprinted here), makes this strategy workable. Birthrates in many European countries are too low to replace the existing populations, yet Europe needs bodies to sustain its economies and its welfare states. The Muslim lands near Europe, where high birthrates are the norm, are the closest source available to Europe for replenishing its population, making real the possibility that immigration could transform Europe into a Muslim-dominated region long before the feudal monarchies, police states, and Islamist governments (and now democracies) of the Middle East resolve their differences.
Given these trends, the continuing uproar in the wake of the Jyllands-Posten cartoons depicting the image of the Prophet Mohammed could become the rule, and not the exception, for the expansion of Islamist influence. Instead of imposing Islamic law through formal control of governments, Islamists might envision expanding the Caliphate by imposing one Islamic law at a time in places where large enough populations are willing to ignore local civil law and take enforcement of Islamic law into their own hands.
The success of such a program depends on non-Muslims not putting up much of a fight as the societies around them become increasingly restrictive. Steyn believes that Europeans, overwhelmed by demographic trends and lacking what he labels the "civilizational confidence" to defend their principles, might eventually submit.
Contrary to Steyn's assertion, however, the problem for Western liberals tends not to be a lack of confidence, but an overabundance of confidence in the wrong places. The progressive West doesn't lack confidence in its culture as much as it doesn't really believe that its culture -- or anyone's culture -- matters much. Western progressivism, secular and rationalist, has become defined by its belief that a perfect society here on earth can be brought about through the proper manipulation of material factors. Traditions and ideas that have played key roles in the success of the West -- such as freedom of expression -- are considered to be secondary factors.
Radical Islamists also seek to actively create a perfect society here on earth, though their definition of perfection obviously differs from the progressive definition. Radical Islamism has its roots in movements, like the Wahhabi movement founded in eighteenth-century Arabia and the Salafi movement founded in nineteenth-century Egypt, that seek to restore Islam to an idealized seventh-century form. What Western observers tend to overlook is that these movements do not only reject modernity in a Western sense, but also reject much of Islamic tradition. But since no one at the founding of Wahhabism or Salafism was around to see what Islam was really like in the seventh century, what they are trying to restore is based upon idealized images of what should be, not anything that ever was. In this sense, radical Islam is as utopian as Western progressivism.
Thus, when progressives confront radical Islamists, the result is two sides, each -- for different reasons -- disinterested in the traditions and culture and habits that have shaped the West, each confident that their version of an idealized utopia will prevail over whatever exists now.
The problem -- for progressives -- is that Islamists are willing to fight to impose their beliefs, while progressives don't believe that they need to fight for theirs. Modern progressive secular faith includes a belief that history follows an inevitable path driving people away from ideologies and cultures that don't promise earthly rewards and towards a state-centric philosophy that promises to deliver material comfort. Eventually, everyone's cultural and ideological differences will fall to the side, because everyone will desire to work together in a system that delivers generous welfare and cradle-to-grave healthcare.
But what Western progressives and multicultural liberals view as sensitivity -- like calls for "self-restraint" on free expression -- that is intended to ease the transition of those from outside of the West into Western provider states, Islamists view as a sign of weakness. They see a willingness to accept practices incompatible with the concept of freedom as a willingness to surrender cherished principles when the demand for surrender is made forcefully enough. Ultimately, if the West is led by those unwilling to defend Western ideals because they believe that impersonal material forces are, by themselves, enough to sustain the vibrancy of the West, then liberal Western governance may find itself replaced from within by a restored Caliphate that rose to power because the rejection of important principles like the freedom of expression went unchallenged.
The press is so eager to report President Bush's errors that it is too lazy to research terms of
(1) Overrun ..... flood waters so high that it runs over levees
(2) Breach ....... a hole in the levee .... holes allow flood water to flow unimpeded, often becoming larger the more water flows through
Powerline caught AP's negligent error, Drudge nailed it this morning.
High up on my list of annoyances are references to the United States as a democracy and the suggestion that Iraq should become a democracy. The word "democracy" appears in neither of our founding documents – the Declaration of Independence nor the U.S. Constitution.
Our nation's founders had disdain for democracy and majority rule. James Madison, in Federalist Paper No. 10, said in a pure democracy, "there is nothing to check the inducement to sacrifice the weaker party or the obnoxious individual." During the 1787 Constitutional Convention, Edmund Randolph said that "in tracing these evils to their origin every man had found it in the turbulence and follies of democracy."
John Adams said, "Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There was never a democracy yet that did not commit suicide." Chief Justice John Marshall added, "Between a balanced republic and a democracy, the difference is like that between order and chaos." The founders knew that a democracy would lead to the same kind of tyranny suffered under King George III. Their vision for us was a republic.
But let's cut to Iraq and President Bush's call for it to become a democracy. I can't think of a worse place to have a democracy – majority rule. Iraq needs a republic like that envisioned by our founders – decentralized and limited government power. In a republican form of government, there is rule of law. All citizens, including government officials, are accountable to the same laws. Government intervenes in civil society to protect its citizens against force and fraud, but does not intervene in the cases of peaceable, voluntary exchange.
Democracy, what the Bush administration calls for, is different. In a democracy, the majority rules either directly or through its elected representatives. The law is whatever the government determines it to be. Laws aren't necessarily based upon reason but power. In other words, democracy is just another form of tyranny – tyranny of the majority.
In Iraq, Arabs are about 75 percent of the population, Kurds about 20 percent and Turkomen and Assyrian the balance. Religiously, Shia are about 60 percent of the population, Sunni 35 percent with Christian and other religions making up the balance. If a majority-rule democracy emerges, given the longstanding hate and distrust among ethnic/religious groups, it's a recipe for conflict. The reason is quite simple. Majority rule is a zero-sum game with winners and losers, with winners having the power to impose their wills on the minority. Conflict emerges when the minority resists.
The ideal political model for Iraq is Switzerland's cantonal system. Historically, Switzerland, unlike most European countries, was made up of several different major ethnic groups – Germans, French, Italians and Rhaeto-Romansch. Over the centuries, conflicts have arisen between these groups, who differ in language, religion (Catholic and Protestant) and culture. The resolution to the conflict was to allow the warring groups to govern themselves.
Switzerland has 26 cantons. The cantons are divided into about 3,000 communes. Switzerland's federal government controls only those interests common to all cantons – national defense, foreign policy, railways and the like. All other matters are controlled by the individual cantons and communes. The Swiss cantonal system enables people of different ethnicity, language, culture and religion to live at peace with one another. As such, Switzerland's political system is well suited to an ethnically and religiously divided country such as Iraq.
By the way, for President Bush and others who insist on calling our country a democracy, should we change our pledge of allegiance to say "to the democracy, for which it stands," and should we rename "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" to "The Battle Hymn of the Democracy"?
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