Monthly Archives: March 2009

Smugglers–Don’t Head North To Canada!

It is a given in modern life that nations seek to guard their borders against illegal immigrants, but throughout American-Canadian history the two nations have maintained relatively open borders to facilitate travel. A senior official in the Obama administration made clear that Canada would not be treated any different than what is happening on the Mexican border. OK, so there is extensive drug violence and kidnappings and murders on the US-Mexican border, but who is to tell that drug lords will not head north to Canada and continue the same sort of violence? Of course, common sense would dictate that Canada is NOT a threat to American interests. Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security, made clear “we shouldn’t go light on one (border) and heavy on the other.” Why not?

She also let Canadians know that regardless of past history, Canada and the United States have a border and she intends to safeguard that border against —?? There is no threat from Canada and it makes sense to lower restrictions on our neighbors to the north even while we maintain tighter ones on our neighbors to the south.

Jewish And Arab Extremists Clash In Israel

Jews carrying large Israeli flags and flanked by security forces marched on the outskirts of the town of Umm-el-Fahm which contains many Israeli Muslims who ostensibly are equal citizens in the state of Israel. Itamar Ben-Gvir, a leader of the group, announced to one and all, “We came to say that the state of Israel is a Jewish state. We came in a show of loyalty and to say whoever is loyal, welcome. but people who flout the law should get out of here.” In theory, and hopefully, practice, Israel is a democratic society in which mobs do not determine who is or is not “loyal.” We in America during the 1950s went through such a program of “loyalty” that Senator Joseph McCarthy endeavored to impose on others. Israel has to make a choice, if it wishes to continue being a democratic society, which was the dream of its founders, then imposing “loyalty” upon anyone– Muslim, Jew, atheist– violates the basic foundation of the nation.

Jews in the United States of America represent less than two percent of the population, not the twenty percent represented by Muslims in Israel. Although the vast majority of Americans are Christian they do not demand “loyalty” to their views from minorities. The world will know when Israel has become a democratic state when a Muslim is prime minister of that nation. The tragedy of Israel is that petty minded little thugs and bullies like Itamar Ben-Gvir have power.

Syria Ready To Discuss With Israel Government

The emergence of Benjamin Netanyahu as the new head of a right wing dominated government despite the presence of Labor in the coalition does not deem well for peace with Syria. Bashar Assad, president of Syria, expressed a desire for peace but did not expect much from the Netanyahu government. “We don’t expect much in the forseeable future.. since (President Obama) has announced clear positions on Iran and Afghanistan, but we haven’t heard an announced clear position on the peace process.” He can only wonder whether a Netanyahu government will go much beyond saying they want peace but when it comes to specific issues of compromise there is little in the background of the new government to suggest it thinks anything other than Palestinians should agree with their ideas.

There is no force for compromise and peace in the new Israel government. Unless President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton exert pressure, the prospect for peace in the Middle East is rather dim.

European Union Leader Blasts Obama Economics

The European Union has not been overly enthusiastic about economic plans advocated by President Obama to deal with the economic crisis. A top political leader, Czech Republic Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek, whose nation holds the presidency of the EU slammed the Obama stimulus package as a “way to hell” and warned that it would undermine the stability of the world economic structure. Most European leaders favor tighter financial regulation and do not support huge stimulus packages to jump start economies. The upcoming meeting of leaders of the Group of 20 might well be rather hectic.

It is doubtful if the Czech leader is among the world’s leading authorities on how to deal with economic issues. But, there apparently is a rather stark difference between the European emphasis on regulation versus the Obama drive to have a stimulus package that will send American debt to a new high. In a sense, both views will eventually be proven correct or not. Hopefully, the rest of us can survive if either one is wrong.

Turn Around! Big Brother Is Watching You Read This!!

As you read these words, have you considered the possibility that Big Brother government is leaning over your shoulder to read what you read and make note of what you read or send?Millions of people in the United Kingdom who use social networking sites such as Facebook or MySpace might soon have their every visit recorded in the big book of the government in order to continue the search for terrorists, or at least the search for subversives who for some reason do not agree with the government. British Ministers have aroused a storm or protest over their plan to store information about every phone call, email land internet visit. Vernon Coaker, the Home Office minister disclosed that social networking sites could be forced to retain information about the users’ web-browsing habits.

After all if we are really serious about dealing with terrorists and bad people and God knows who else who does not fit our definition of being a “nice person” isn’t it about time we really got serious about searching. I hear there are also plans to have the Home Office monitor when and for how long people go to the toilet in order to develop a “Shit Index” which would provide precise data on how long people are on the toilet shitting instead of checking their homes and streets for terrorists.

Gee, I wonder what the Government will do with all those Valentine Day messages–store them in order to develop a “love talk index?” We need more data, the more data one has, the more one can defeat terrorism.

Taiwan Still Problem Between US And China

It is now over a half century since the defeated forces of General Chiang Kai-shek left the mainland of China and sought refuge in Taiwan. The Communist world of the 1940s is not the world of today in which the United States and China are important economic partners but issus about Taiwan continue to crop up. In 1979, the United States Congress passed legislation requiring America to provide Taiwan arms of a defensive nature. Again this year Congress returned to this piece of legislation to once again express its view of its necessity. The Chinese government has every right to become angry at interference in the internal affairs of another nation.

The solution for Taiwan is clear– recognize it is part of historic China and then become an autonomous functioning part of the nation with its current freedoms intact and the right to continue conducting its economy as has been done in the past. It is time to put this problem to rest.

Welcome To “Overseas Contingency Operations”

Forget about any “war on terrorism.” The infamous Bush term which made absolutely no sense since one fights groups and individuals rather than abstractions has come to an end. The George Brush promise to fight terrorism “until every terrorist group of global search has been found, stopped and defeated” will never be since President Obama has decided this lofty goal could never be achieved, at least on planet Earth, and it must be supplanted with an expression that is closer to the target — “overseas contingency operations.” Obama dispatched an email informing everyone the “war on terror” has come to an end, let’s all get behind the “overseas contingency operation” which is must clearer and doable.

There is just one minor problem confronting President Obama. Does anyone who reads or writes in the English language have the faintest idea what is meant by “overseas contingency operation?” Anyway, if you happen to run across any one who is into “overseas contingency operations” grab hold of that person and send him directly to the White House.

Did Georgia Plan To Invade South Ossetia?

The German newspaper, Der Spiegel, has come into possession of information which indicates the Georgian government lied about its reasons for invading South Ossetia. Instead of responding to a Russian attack, evidence suggests that Georgia leader Mikhail Saakashvili, planned an invasion even before there was any indication that Russia would intervene. On August 7, 2008, Mamuka Kurashvili, commander of the Georgian peacekeeping force that had been stationed in South Ossetia, told the press in what appeared to be a carefully staged and prepared talk, that his forces had to intervene in order to “reestablish constitutional order in the entire region.” Der Spiegel sources believe the general was quoting directly from Order, No. 2, August 7.

The government of Georgia still refuses to release the controversial Order No. 2. After Russian troops entered the fight, President Saakashvili, argued that he learned at 10:00 p.m. that Russian tanks had entered, but on the morning of August 7, Georgian forces of 12,000 troops and 75 tanks already had entered South Ossetia.

President Bush and most members of Congress immediately sided with Georgia and condemned Russia for initiating the conflict. Will the American government now acknowledge the events do not reveal it was a Russian initiated war?

Kurdish Rebels Reject Peace Agreement

Among the longest fights that has been present in the Middle East is the struggle by Kurdish rebels to obtain a separate nation by carving out a piece of Turkey that claim is really Kurdish. Iraq President Jalal Talabani while meeting with Turkish President Gul urged members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) to lay down their arms and work for peace. Iraq is concerned the presence of an armed rebel group on its territory just adds one more complication to their efforts at ending violence in the country. Of course, the PKK believes it represents the interests of Kurdish people and the only way is the use of force.

The people of Iraq have known nothing but violence for over twenty years. During Saddam Hussein’s rule, Kurdish people were oppressed, but now there is an opportunity to work for peace. The path to peace is not easy, but the path to war only results in death and destruction.

Financial AIGgravation In Washington

US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner asked Congress for sweeping powers to take control of non-bank financial institutions to avoid the problems the government is having with AIG. Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Barnanke and Geithner defended their inability to do anything concerning payment of huge bonuses to AIG executives. “These were legal contracts and we’re a nation of laws,” insisted Geithner who warned about government intervening in the sanctity of contracts. Both emphasized the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation could take over banks but had no legal authority over insurers like AIG. Bernanke said if there was such authority he would have had the FDIC take over AIG. In New York, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has forced 15 of the top 20 recipients in the United States to return their bonus but he lacks authority to do so in other nations.

The American people are having bailout fatigue and President Obama should understand that most people will not endure more fiascos like the AIG bonus arrangements. There is also increasing concern that AIG used federal money to help foreign banks deal with their problems. Most probably, laws protect foreigners against being compelled to give back money because they are out of the jurisdiction of this nation.

The real question is: what has been learned from this fiasco?