Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Libya: Farce and Tragedy

It's happening. The end is nigh for the story that began with progressive delusions and arrogance about the transformative power of Obama's soaring rhetoric--a rhetoric which could and would change the world and, most notably, make the Middle East not the Middle East. Enchanted by his own spell, Obama, leading from behind, allowed the USA to become the pointy end of the spear for the absurd EU, and take on and take out Qaddafi. That action would bring an Arab Spring to benighted Libya; the murder of our Ambassador and his staff, well, those were just "bumps in the road" on the way to Nirvana.

It, however, now seems we are marshaling forces for the imminent evacuation of our embassy in Tripoli as Libya descends into civil war.

As I wrote on Halloween of 2012 re our mad Libya excursion,
We went to war where we had no major interests; against a regime that posed no danger to us; and with a policy that neither defined our objectives nor gave thought to what would happen if we "succeeded." All that Obama and Clinton could do was hark back to the 1980s, and cite Qaddafi's past misdeeds. Obama seemed channeling Ronald Reagan. It proved absurd and completely counterproductive to our interests of today. Our policy was driven by what I have called the liberal foreign policy mindset, to wit, "send America's youth off to war but only if there is no U.S. interest to be protected or furthered." 
Our policy was also motivated by another trait of the liberal mind: See what you believe. The Obama cult believed that the magical powers of the Dear Leader from Chicago would transform the world into a peaceful Eden where Julia could tend her community garden free from the threat of unwanted pregnancies, medical expenses, or having to look for a real job. The Arabs and the entire Muslim world would abandon their 1400-year-old war against the rest of the world, and come join us around the camp fire. Ah, the Arab Spring . . . if just those pesky Jews living in Occupied Palestine would get over their paranoia everything would be great.
Even before the above citation, way back in March 2011, I wrote that,
Unlike Saddam, the Taliban, or Al Qaeda, crazy old Qaddafi posed no threat to the US homeland or to our interests abroad. One of the great achievements of the Bush administration was that it defanged Qaddafi-- dismantled his nuclear weapons program and turned him into a valuable source of information on Al Qaeda. That administration basically treated Qaddafi as though he were an aged sex offender, put him under house arrest and tagged him with a ankle monitor. Qaddafi, once the darling of the left, became just a cranky old man with an odd fashion sense selling his oil to whomever wanted it. Sort of an Arab Joan Rivers selling his wares on late night TV-- he did seem to wear a lot of that Joan Rivers jewelry, by the way. We didn't buy much oil from him--only about 0.3% of our consumption comes from Libya--but the Euros did. So we had an imperfect solution in an imperfect world. 
Then, Qaddafi got himself a rebellion. OK. People in Libya are unhappy. OK. He is a crazy gangster and responded like a gangster. OK. And our interests are what? Are they so pressing as to justify Obama's incredible abuse of Presidential power? Not even an attempt to get Congress, much less the American people on board? How do we justify sending our people into harm's way, spending hundreds of millions of dollars, probably billions by the time this is "over," however, that's defined? What is the mission? No Fly Zone, or blast Qaddafi into the arms of 72 virgins? What result will make any difference to American national interests? What are our interests in this?
No thought was given to our national interests, but we got what we "wanted": Qaddafi ended up trapped in a sewer drain, beaten, and shot to death by a mob protected by NATO planes and drones.

Then an odd thing began to happen: reality began to assert itself. The American Ambassador and three other Americans were murdered in Benghazi. Our misadministration in Washington, as covered extensively here, launched a campaign of lies and excuses for why and how that happened. The MSM, with one or two honorable exceptions, went along and helped cover this criminal incompetence and prevarication in the interest of assuring The One's re-election.

Our Ambassador died at the hands of the jihadis for whom we went to war. The entire region has  become increasingly unstable as the crazies come out in North Africa and elsewhere, seeing weakness and cowardice everywhere--for some inexplicable reason they don't seem to fear #hashtags.

There are consequences for failure,
The unpleasant drag queen who used to run Libya knew how to keep these groups under control. Instead of working with the old buzzard, we listened to the Europeans, and participated in an insane war to have him removed. By the time we decided that Qaddafi was the devil, he was cooperating with us in the battle against the Islamists, had given up his involvement in international terrorism, and abandoned his WMD program. He was like an old repentant Mafia chieftain who sought to make points with the FBI. He also, it turned out, preferred dealing with American oil companies than with European ones, the real source of Europe's sudden rage against Loretta of Libya. Back when he was sponsoring terror, the Euros were terrified of him and opposed Reagan's actions against him. When he no longer posed a threat, ah, well . . . time to go to war, well, have the Americans go to war, that is.
As noted, we are putting together an armada in Italy to go into Libya and evacuate our Embassy--and avoid criticism for the Obama misadministration by putting on a show of overwhelming force just as Trey Gowdy's Committee begins the task of uncovering the Benghazi cover-up. We will see calls that now is not the time to criticize the misadministration when it is trying to save our people in Libya. The Embassy, of course, should be evacuated, and now. There is nothing useful it can do under the present conditions. Those conditions in large part were brought about by the disastrous foreign policy of Obama, Clinton, and now Kerry: a policy created by progressive delusions and by a total misreading of the role and importance of a resolute, steady, and activist United States. Weakness and cloudy thinking will get you killed. Listening to the EU will get you nowhere, and that's where we are.

We assume that the President has learned about the disintegration of his MidEast policy from the media, and is "mad as hell."

It all proceeds as foretold.

50 comments:

  1. Diplomad, And thus the cesspool that is known as the "Middle East" is now infinately more dangerous and unstable than it was before Obama began his inept interventions.
    Is there no one advising the President who is over the age of 25!!?? I sure hope he stays away from the Pacific and lets Australia look out for "Western" interests in the region.

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    1. Two words....
      Tony Abbot

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    2. Very nice! I do a slightly earlier period (1775-1783) His Majesty's Marines. Did Napoleonics way back when I lived in Europe (42d Foot).

      Delete
  2. Yeah, this Administrations timing is impeccable, isn't it. Gowdy shouldn't pay any attention, just keep his eyes and efforts on the subject and there will be good to come from it. I hope the Republicans have made a video of all the officials holding #hashtag signs and run it constantly. Well like the old song "The Beat Goes On", but the tempo's picking up.

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    1. I like S.O.S. Band better.....

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSEbDN49bYM

      No One's Gonna Love You

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  3. Too bad I didn't take screen shots of the Benghazi consulate's website on the day of the attack. I recall that it featured a breezy "Come visit America! Get your visa here! We are here to serve you!" kind of message that would have been embarrassing enough if we were opening a new consulate in a second tier city in western Europe, never mind Libya.

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  4. I see that John Kerry was Yale's "class day" speaker a couple of days ago. In addition to calling the diversity of the graduating class "Donald Sterling’s worst nightmare," he shared deep thoughts like, "If we can't galvanize action, we invite instability. And I promise you, radical extremism is all-too-ready to fill the vacuum left behind." Good thing he is on the job! (Come to think of it, I'd rather have him taking selfies with undergrads than taking a hands on role in foreign policy.)
    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2014/05/19/full-text-of-john-kerrys-speech-at-yale-commencement/

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    1. I saw the cheap shot at Sterling, a man, who has his flaws but who unlike Kerry, made his own money and employs hundreds of people, many of them black. Kerry wind surfs.

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    2. Kerry also looks for the, "DADDY" but is not averse to fooking anyone. Somehow I don't think Sterling is that grade of narcissistic, "Buddy Fucker".

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  5. The whole house of cards is really coming down, just as many of us expected. In large measure it has taken too long: if Obama's ineptitude had bloomed full flower two years ago we might have a President Mitt putting things back together right now -- with the legacy media telling us how bad things are, of course, now that a Republican is in charge.

    And we are seeing the fundamental change Colin Powell promised us Obama would bring. Not just in foreign affairs -- the wheels are coming off the wagon at home too. Of course it's all Bush's fault. And Obama only learns about things going pear-shaped after the fact, from the news reporting. Is there no end to just how duplicitous this president and his supporters can be?

    My prayers are with the people being evacuated. It is never an easy thing, leaving domestic staff and friends behind in a dangerous setting.

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    1. Deny Deny..and then ignore...
      Such is an effective tool...
      if you are a tool.
      Are you a tool?
      BAAAAAA

      Delete
  6. This really not new. Clinton took GHW Bush's food program and turned it into Blackhawk Down. During the Clinton Administration, I think it was Foreign Affairs, which I used to read until it got too depressing, that had a cover story, "Foreign Policy as Social Work." That is the story of Democrats.

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    1. You'll Michael K please excuse my impertinence with (maybe) disagreeing with what I'm guessing is an incomplete appreciation of what "Operation Restore Hope" actually was and when.

      This sphincter tightening op - unlike Adm Smith & USMC Gen Zinni's participation - was a UN run thing. UNSCOM I seem to recall it was called.

      http://www.cna.org/research/1994/operation-restore-hope-summary-report

      *If you doubt some "Hillbilly Arkie" - who I hope will remain anonymous .. meaning pretty much, me - send Diplomad an email asking Ambassador Oakley's opinion how stuff "was going" before we [CENTCOM] handed off effective control to the DipShit United Nations to send Delta Force "orders" via its Command "Structure."

      Dip's made many references to how the UN works, "book all the best hotel rooms" etc - the UNITAF folks all laughed before the handoff the UN "required A/Cs" even before they could occupy their quarters.

      The Delta guys were subject to the UN, no US Commander would've done that. At the time.

      Clinton does bear responsibility for allowing that.

      Arkie

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    2. The UN..
      United Fools.
      We need dictators to be in charge de affairs...
      From everything to dictate...
      After all ..if you know how to Murder..you must know how to SAVE...
      DIME ME

      Delete
  7. My preferred foreign policy:
    "Has your population voted overwhelmingly in favor of pursuing accession to the United States of America?"
    "No?"
    "You don't have much oil. We've got nothing to gain. When you've changed your mind and come up with something that will help *both* of us, we'll talk about intervening in your troubles."

    If people can't admit that they can't create a successful government on their own, what are we even supposed to 'help fix'? It's like the alcoholic who wants me to give them my liver.

    - reader #1482

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    1. Are you calling the IMF for a pickup? Are you yelling about, "unfair, unfair" whilst taking from GMO's to picket pocket? Do you play Starving whilst laying more of a burden and doing nothing for?
      ...Snicker Snack...
      Run..to France....

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    2. That's ok.... but ... I think you left out one important proviso:

      "Any chance of bad things from your sector spreading us or to people we care about? Please do your best to contain whatever troubles you like to foster; I can assure you that you won't like our response if you don't."

      Delete
    3. I think the US is willing to put up with a whole lot, so long as there's something of value at the end. However, funneling money into a dictatorship... or the Newark school system, is supposed to reach a sanity limit at some point.
      I'm pretty confident that any screwed up country is going to be screwed up enough to want to 'maintain its independence'.

      - reader #1482

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  8. "Obama seemed channeling Ronald Reagan."

    I wish I could agree there Diplomad alas I'm afraid Obama was channeling this guy:

    http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/149429-mccain-calls-for-immediate-no-fly-zone-over-libya
    ______________

    But I guess I should add that I'm "ruminating" a little *theory* on this current imbroglio - this guy Khalifa Haftar *running things curiously enough spent 24 years in Virginia USA - odd thing these Libyan names, Virginia's DMV records the spelling as "Hifter" -

    Curious I find the 'timing' of all this. Don't know you saw the Charlie Rose interview of Mr. Gowdy fairly recently? Anyway Representative Gowdy represented to Charlie ... paraphrasing, I've had a beer or two since I watched, "One of the most egregious things to me Charlie is, nobody's been brought to justice."
    _____________

    Perhaps merely and "purely" coincidentally, the Congressional Research Service released a study on curiously enough, "Issues Re Libya" May 8th.

    The 200 (some reports give 250 plus some tactical air stuff) US Marines seem to've gotten somewhere into Spain a couple of weeks ago - then on the Sicily last week.

    I noted the only real Marine carrying ship (Bataan I'm pretty sure) was most recently open-source, there's certain things I will not do ... anyway the ship was positioned just south of the Red Sea.

    But as I mentioned above - for now all I'm doing is mulling over a

    theory.

    Arkie

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    1. Channeling Reagan? No.
      More like a moorlock taking a selifke for a moorcok on the death of the earth.

      Delete
  9. I dissent somewhat from your view (and most peoples' views I guess). First, I agree that the incompetence, cowardice, and lack of responsibility-taking [Ms Clinton] of this administration/State dept/Defense Dept regarding Benghazi should be thoroughly exposed and punished.

    However, I think we've been justified in taking out Khaddafi since Lockerbie. Or do we let tinpot dictators kill 270 people including 189 Americans and not demand blood in return? OK, yes, typically the US does roll over and let tinpot dictators do these things, but that doesn't mean we should.

    The mistake, just like Bush's mistake, was not preparing for the inevitable chaos afterward. Anyone with a brain should have known what would happen in Libya after the decapitation, and prepared accordingly. I don't care if Libya descends into chaos. That's their problem. That's part of the consequences of allowing themselves to be ruled by a dictator who kills innocent Americans.

    This should have happened 20 years ago.

    Mark in Portland

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    1. Good points, I would add, however, that while Khaddafi was a murdering creep, and I wish Reagan had taken him out thirty years ago, by the time the Obama train chugged into town, Khaddafi was a nothing in terms of threat to the US. He was helping us against AQ which was a threat and served as a powerful counter to the jihadi crazies which were emerging in North Africa. You deal with enemies one at a time; some times your enemy of yesterday can become useful tomorrow.

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    2. While I agree totally that Obama owns Benghazi, our getting into what could only be a cluster*** was foreseeable. At least to any who paid attention for some years to that cesspit.

      Andrew C. McCarthy (NRO 02 MAR 11) "Libya's Makeover"

      ‘The relationship has been moving in a good direction for a number of years now, and I think tonight does mark a new phase,” said Condoleezza Rice. President Bush’s secretary of state was taking time out from inventing the 70 percent of Palestinians who just want to live side-by-side in peace with the Zionist entity in order to reinvent Moammar Qaddafi.

      It was September 2008, and the Freedom Agenda was in full swing, with a few hiccups: Hamas taking over Gaza, Hezbollah strangling what passed for the government of Lebanon, al-Qaeda reassembling in Pakistan, the Taliban resurging in Afghanistan, and, in Iraq, the usual: Shiites killing Sunnis, Sunnis killing Shiites, and everyone killing Americans when they weren’t busy chasing any remaining non-Muslims out of the country.

      ...

      I didn’t buy the remaking of Qaddafi then, and I don’t buy the remaking of Libya now. That puts me among a breed that, if news accounts are to be believed, is increasingly rare: I don’t care about the Libyan people — I’m sorry, I mean the “brave Libyan freedom fighters.”

      ...

      Finally, to further grease the wheels for Secretary Rice’s historic visit with our new ally, the administration agreed to pay Libya reparations. Yes, you read that correctly. This was for what Qaddafi claimed were damages sustained in Reagan’s 1986 bombing campaign."

      http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/261063/libyas-makeover-andrew-c-mccarthy

      And very likely nobody remembers the George Will article (09 MAR 11) wherein he wrote

      Secretary of State Hillary Clinton fears Libya becoming a failed state — “a giant Somalia.” Speaking of which, have we not seen a cautionary movie — “Black Hawk Down” — about how humanitarian military interventions can take nasty turns?

      http://nypost.com/2011/03/09/stay-out-of-libya/

      The problem lies not with our media, per se, it resides in our Government.

      Arkie

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    3. However, I think we've been justified in taking out Khaddafi since Lockerbie. Or do we let tinpot dictators kill 270 people including 189 Americans and not demand blood in return? OK, yes, typically the US does roll over and let tinpot dictators do these things, but that doesn't mean we should.
      Will he, nil he..
      but no plan..
      like a nike plan on ads...
      Just do it.

      Delete
    4. Well sure *Anon @5/21 0032

      I'd be the last to argue with you on that "nicetie" - matter of fact we might got a whole heckuva lot of stuff done a little quicker, a heckuva lot more cheap had we enlisted our friends who had this guy - Abdel Baset al-Megrahi - to do all it takes to take out a tinpot.

      & for what it's worth Anon 5/21 0032

      I didn't need a Tom Cruise movie to let me in on what Grammarians would refer to as "a very rudimentary hexidiameter style effort crudely performed most likely intended to impress somebody."

      But then ... I do know the coordinates a GBU had to have to hit Bab al-Azizia ... not sure I'd known (at the time) there ever was a difference - or if - a Nike missile differed in kind from for instance, an Air Jordan.

      But then ... "wtf" as ya'll text experts on America's highways I'm given to understand at 80mph best understand it in traffic.

      Took me a heckuva long time to figure out Mach+ took less time than the average "LOL."

      Arkie

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  10. Eh, Diplomad?

    You can't see it - or if you have better contact with NSA than I do & can - but I have to admit I'm sputtering a few feathers of crow. What I'm admitting - and posting ... signed, is, I'm eating some - crow that is.

    For whatever reason I hit a few of your posts from the Pre-"However The Guy's Name Was Spelled" and came upon this sentence (bolding mine)

    The western mostly lefty elites have been in a tizzy.

    I apologize Diplomad Sir for, what is my negligence. (But I'll not be giving the date nor the post's title where that appeared, wouldn't want to mess with the atmospherics I hope you understand Sir.)

    I'm just guessing (having never read ... oh the dailyKos for instance) I'll ever be in a situation on those sorts of sites where I'd feel it incumbent to ... well. Admit to a repeat oversight.

    "Oversight" being a synonym for ...

    Arkie

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    1. So Sawwy!


      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55D-ybnYQSs


      Usa usa! nsa! nsa! yay!!!!!!

      Delete
    2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcJGAYjQFrQ

      Delete
    3. My Heart BLEEDS...I tell you..it BLEEDS...

      Delete
    4. From what we used to call the Admiral's Gestapo to ...

      Delete
    5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZEJ4OJTgg8

      Delete
    6. James?

      (I'm rather doubting you mainly 'cause you'd have allowed redress

      but from how those above "put their stuff" I'm pretty sure what they're telling/insisting to me is their insistent proclamations on "my acceptance of diversity" ... be it of their sort.

      I've seen so many examples of "diversity" on college campuses of late (examples too numerous to enumerate) that I've come to the conclusion diversity is the precise opposite of what our former premier educational institutions at least the student body actually want.

      I used to think Zombies were some species of TV show I needed to comfort my kids they wouldn't find in real life. Appears I was mistaken.

      I do wish I could get away with typing on Diplomad's site - admitting I've not searched the previous youtubes - without Diplomad deleting me out of hand,

      Fuck you very much in the nicest possible way.

      Arkie

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    7. DELETE THE ABOVE DIP PLEASE? SOONEST?

      None are from the "regulars" - the youtubes are from the nuts.

      I apologize for my language above - I should've searched first.

      Arkie

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    8. Wasn't me Ark. I've been off on one my feeble minded errands. Who ever it is, is well, just boring.

      Delete
  11. Contrary to your opinion, I must say that Obama’s handling of Libya is stunning. Truly an unmitigated success.

    Qaddafi was truly a blight on the world. Not only was a constant torment for over 40 years to his own people, he can be seen as the modern father of terrorism.
    He supported every violent terrorist group in the west, he provided support for Chavez in South America and for the despots in the Sahara and west Africa.

    In sharp contrast to Obama, the late Ronald Reagan completely FAILED in his attempted to get rid of this cancer of a man. He made a big international drama condemning him in 1981 but didn’t do anything. Once Qaddafi killed his soldiers in disco in Berlin, he pathetically bombed about a hundred random civilians in Libya and then just gave up. This reckless actions did absolutely nothing to weaken Qaddafi, in fact it even strengthen the mad dogs regime. Bush wasn’t much better, greeting this murderer with open arms and removing it from the state terrorism sponsor list in 2006.

    Obama, on the other hand, without ever landing troops on the ground and leading from behind, got this parasite running from his palace and hiding in a sewer, right where he belongs.
    I was glad when his own victims he tormented throughout the years finally put an end to this disgrace of a human being.

    Now, I am not an American, so I can’t comment on Obama’s domestic policies. I know my praise of him will get you blind with rage, seeing as you are loyal to Obama’s rival party. But as far as Obama’s polices go in regards to a country very close to me, I congratulate him.

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    1. Diplomad?

      Check your sitemeter Sir. Kepha (I think) might notice some grammar "I think" I do.

      & I Arkie will not be the least p'.....-off to have any, as you'd choose Sir, comments deleted.

      - Can't tell for sure Dip but I think (despite what your sitemeter might say) I'm seeing very southern Algeria. & I figure you know what I think about that. -

      Arkie

      Delete
    2. GoldenPistol, I am not blind with rage. I am delighted you read my blog and took the time to comment. I disagree with your views--and think you're just being a bit of a provocateur as labeling Obama's Libya policy a "stunning success" is a bit much. I, however, am a conservative/libertarian and we believe, unlike the left, in free speech. Please comment any time you wish.

      Delete
  12. Arkie....we have been a bit excited as of late? Thought maybe you were planning a holiday in the Mediterranean?

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    1. Keep an eye on him Whitey, he's getting a little wound up tight and might start saying what he really thinks. Any way it's off to annoy liberals!

      Delete
    2. Well. Maybe a "bit excited" ... I was worrying over Gibralter's apes & realizing I have an e-pal in the vicinity of Rhodes celebrating his birthday. Just thinking one of "our" LHAs or LHDs had made a movement I hadn't reckoned on.

      I was worried he'd be getting travel directions via his GPS - which if ya'll knew the guy, you'd get excited too. It appears the wife made him leave the thing in Somerset ... and, she's in control. Which is good.

      Still. That US Marines movement - it would appear - couldn't have taken place without advance notice. & surely mere coincidence, "we've" got FBI in the vicinity of Nigeria .. stuff appears active in northern Mali. Tunisia's "border patrol" appears busy ... Algeria looks to be active ... Chad of course.

      But yeah James I figure it's a good idea you and "Whitey" keep an eye on me.

      Probably just me but something looks "afoot." Meaning - out of the ordinary. I guess we'll see.

      Arkie

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    3. "But yeah James I figure it's a good idea you and "Whitey" keep an eye on me." I'll do what I can Ark, but I'm afraid I must leave international affairs to you younger guys. My Austin campaign to have fun by dazing and confusing liberals is going much better than expected and taking much of my time. The latest effort of explaining 'how things were in the days of steam radio' is quite a success, they believe it!

      Delete
    4. James, laughter and derision seem to work well against liberals.

      Arkie, I have an e-pal near Rhodes too, and recently sent him a lyric from a Mickey Gilley song from the 1970s about "closing time".

      Delete
    5. Whitewall,
      When I tell them about having to get up early to chop wood to raise steam in the boiler in time to catch the 6am news they marvel. Also the fact that steam radios have a much better signal to noise ratio really peaks their ironic hipster sensitivity.

      Delete
  13. "Good points, I would add, however, that while Khaddafi was a murdering creep, and I wish Reagan had taken him out thirty years ago, by the time the Obama train chugged into town, Khaddafi was a nothing in terms of threat to the US. He was helping us against AQ which was a threat and served as a powerful counter to the jihadi crazies which were emerging in North Africa. You deal with enemies one at a time; some times your enemy of yesterday can become useful tomorrow."

    A friend of mine was a pathologist in the army in Korea. The Japanese had performed many unethical experiments on Chinese and prisoners of war. As a result, they had learned a lot about a hemorrhagic fever common in Korea. The unit was called Unit 731 . After the war, in an excess of zeal to cover up Japanese war crimes, The army did not allow the pathologists and infectious disease specialists to learn what Unit 731 had learned about the hemorrhagic fever. It cost thousands if US lives in the war. Far more than Ghaddafi ever took.

    http://www.itg.be/internet/ebola/ebola-53.htm

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  14. On another blog, this question was asked:

    Can anyone name a significant American achievement in world affairs over the past five years?

    I started to think about that and I can't think of too many over the past twenty years, never mind five.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. With the collapse of the USSR we went into "end of history" mode.

      Delete
    2. Good point. Now we are in "repeat history" mode with some people in charge who were too often associated with the other side.

      Delete