Archive for September, 2009

No, it most emphatically is not, Re: Is the US right to cut missile defense plan?, BBC News Website, September 19, 2009

Saturday, September 19th, 2009

President Obama’s decision to discard plans to install a missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic is idiotic and irresponsible. It is the clearest demonstration to date that the complexities of foreign policy and the linkages therein are beyond his depth. Foreign policy is a terrible area to make mistakes in and this decision is an awful mistake that will have disastrous consequences for America and the world.

The decision makes the United States and it’s allies more vulnerable to nuclear attack, reinforces the perception that Obama is weak, naive, ignorant and can be easily manipulated, encourages Iran and North Korea to continue developing their nuclear capabilities, sends a very clear signal to Israelis that they will have to deal with the Iranian nuclear threat themselves because the U.S. cannot be relied on to do so, calls into question the reliability of American defense commitments in Europe and elsewhere and guarantees a nuclear arms race in the Middle East as countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia seek nuclear weapons of their own. It also makes war in the region inevitable because sooner or later Israelis will be compelled to launch a preemptive strike on Iran to prevent an Iranian nuclear attack on them. The credibility of American deterrence no longer really exists and as a result nuclear calamity is a foregone conclusion.

Unless of course President Obama reverses his decision. Let’s hope that he has the capacity and fortitude to do so because if he doesn’t we’re all in deep deep trouble, in it up to our eyeballs as the saying goes.

The Goldstone Report-talk about war crimes!, Re: U.N. Smears Israeli Self-Defence As ‘War Crimes’, Wall Street Journal, September 16, 2009

Thursday, September 17th, 2009

The biggest war crime of all is causing a war in the first place and that is precisely what Hamas is guilty of. Hamas is entirely responsible for every single Palestinian death that occurred during Operation Cast Lead because their unrelenting attacks are what caused Israel to go to war to defend itself and because they chose to conduct hostilities in urban areas while surrounded by civilian populations.

Operation Cast Lead would simply not have happened if Hamas hadn’t constantly killed and maimed Israelis for years, especially civilians. Israel tried to stop the carnage with every means at it’s disposal prior to attacking Gaza. It really had no other choice as it was absolutely clear that nothing else would work. All things considered Israel showed remarkable restraint in waiting so long to reply with force and in trying to resolve the problem through non-violent means. Very few, if any, other countries would have done so, including countries on the U.N. Security Council and the U.N. Human Rights Council.

Israel also showed remarkable restraint during the three weeks of fighting. The vast majority of Palestinian dead were Hamas fighters. Any others who died did so as a direct result of the Hamas strategy of embedding itself in the civilian population, using civilians as human shields, firing weapons from schools and hospitals, storing weapons in mosques and so on i.e. asymetrical warfare. Israel went to great lengths to avoid civilian casualties and succeeded for the most part. There is no doubt that the Israeli Defence Force could have killed far more people than it did. It should be commended for keeping civilian casualties to a minimum despite the conditions it had to fight in and the methods it used should be studied in military academies everywhere.

The Goldstone Report is the latest in a long line of United Nations reports which villify Israel and all things Israeli, bear little or no resemblance to reality, are shallow and superficial in the extreme, absolve Palestinians of any blame or responsibility for anything and excuse or justify whatever they do, no matter how nauseating or odious. Goldstone’s report is so biased, one-sided and generally flawed that it is laughable and no objective, impartial observer could possibly take it seriously or give it any credence.

Nevertheless, a great deal of time and energy will have to be spent to refute it. Hopefully these efforts will be successful, particularly those directed toward the Americans. The last thing Israel needs now is for President Obama to use the report as an excuse to dither or equivocate in his support or to use it as some sort of hammer or bargaining chip, which wouldn’t be beyond him at all.

Barack, Benjamin and the bomb, Re: ‘Iran won’t discuss its nuclear rights’, Jerusalem Post, September 13, 2009

Sunday, September 13th, 2009

Barack Obama’s attempts to prevent Iran from developing and possessing nuclear weapons have been an utter failure and have made nuclear conflagration much more likely. In fact, unless the United States takes a completely different course, it is virtually guaranteed. Obama’s belief that he can convince Iran to halt it’s development of nuclear weapons through dialogue and the threat of sanctions and international opprobrium is dead wrong. If he doesn’t become much more realistic and resolute millions of people around the world wil be dead too, including large numbers of Americans. Iran is getting closer and closer every day to possessing nuclear weapons and the systems to deliver them. Can anyone seriously doubt that it’s regime would use those weapons as soon as it could, particularly against Israel? Not any objective person with a knowledge of history, Islam and the Middle East that’s for sure.

Obama’s path is obvious. First, he must set aside his faith in talk and make it abundantly clear to the Iranians that unless they cease and desist by a certain date the full weight of American diplomatic and economic power will be brought to bear, regardless of what anyone else might think or do. Second, he must make sure they understand that the United States military will take matters in hand if the problem isn’t resolved in due course. It is absolutely unacceptable to America for Iran to possess nuclear weapons and if this can only be prevented militarily, so be it. The regime must believe that this will be done if necessary and that there can be no compromises. As President of the U.S. and Leader of the Free World he can do no less.

Benjamin Netanyahu’s path as Prime Minister of Israel is also obvious. First, he must recognize that Israel can no longer depend on America to protect it and that the survival of the country depends on it’s military and no one else’s. Second, he must conclude that the likelihood of America changing it’s general approach to keeping Iran out of the nuclear club is low and that it’s chances of success are therefore practically nil. Third, he must be prepared to have the Israeli military destroy Iranian nuclear facilities on it’s own once it becomes clear that Iran becoming a nuclear power is imminent. Sad to say, Israel’s existence depends on him being willing to do so and not dithering when the time comes.

Come on Obama get your head out of the sand before it’s too late.

Oh, and by the way Mr. President, North Korea is set for it’s third nuclear weapons test and is well on the way to having bombs of it’s own. Substitute North Korea for Iran and South Korea or Japan for Israel and the same applies.

Death of a salesman, Re: The Salesman-In-Chief Back In Campaign Mode, Toronto Globe & Mail, September 8, 2009

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

The Globe & Mail’s headline says it all. Barack Obama is a consummate salesman who ran an absolutely brilliant campaign which ended with his election as President of the United States. Sales skills are completely different from leadership and management skills however and his lack of competence in these areas is very problematic and alarming. A President who cannot unite people and lead them on a particular path or understand and manage extremely complex portfolios cannot possibly govern effectively either. To date, Obama has been an exceedingly divisive President, has failed to show that he has an in-depth understanding of what being Leader of The Free World actually entails and has been rightfully and severely criticized for his management efforts in a number of key areas, by partisans and non-partisans alike. The prime examples are health care, foreign policy and the economy but there are others as well.

If effective universal health care is to become a reality in the United States the President must act as a catalyst…he must convince ordinary Americans and all the stakeholders involved that it is in their own best interests to have it and that it is possible to develop a system which provides it. He must then work with all concerned to make it happen. Bringing a wide variety of divergent interests together is key to the success of the process and he has been singularly unsuccessful in doing this. He has used his office as a bully pulpit and tried to ram his personal vision of a universal health care system e.g. one based on big government and a huge bureaucracy, down people’s throats. In doing so has alienated virtually everyone and arguably ensured that the present chaotic and deficient system will continue on for years. There is a real possibility his Presidency may founder on the health care issue alone.

In foreign policy he has frightened, disaffected and angered America’s friends and allies, emboldened and encouraged her enemies, denigrated and diminished American and Western values and accomplishments, shown an appalling lack of knowledge of history, demonstrated a disturbing naivete’ and willingness to consort with, appease and put faith in evil, intractable individuals and regimes who would like nothing better than to destroy the country, failed to take strong, uncompromising stands when required, set himself up for obvious failure in several different areas and generally made the United States much more vulnerable, the world much more dangerous and war much more likely. His Presidency could also easily founder on foreign policy.

Obama’s management of the economy has been no more successful. His highly touted stimulus package hasn’t worked, the nation’s finances are in a shambles, he has run up incomprehensibly large deficits, unemployment remains inordinately high, many federal government programs have been cut back, eliminated or are in peril, including longstanding entitlement ones, tax increases are a virtual certainty, home ownership, jobs and personal finances remain jeopardized, pessimism and gloom are pervasive and so on. The wretched state of the economy and his seeming inability to deal with it could bring him down even if health care or foreign policy doesn’t.

Unfortunately there is nothing in Obama’s make-up or past to indicate that he is willing or able to modify his attitudes and behaviour, change course and rescue his Presidency. Aside from the tragic consequences, potential or otherwise, for all of us, what does this mean for him? It means that he will not be re-elected and that his name will be forever included with Jimmy Carter in the ranks of failed, one term Presidents. It means the death of a salesman.

Metaphorically of course.

Misguided rant at Toronto International Film Festival, Re: Film Festival Joins ‘Israeli Propaganda Machine’: Celebrities, National Post, September 4, 2009

Sunday, September 6th, 2009

Too bad Palestinians don’t have the sense, intelligence and courage to build their own Tel Aviv. If they did they would be immeasurably better off and we wouldn’t have to put up with their continual bleating, nor would Israelis have to live with the constant threat of being killed or maimed or seeing their country destroyed.

In order for that to happen Palestinians would have to reject violence, recognize and accept Israel and get rid of the religious fanatics and islamofascists in their midst who do nothing but spout lies and propaganda, sow hatred and terror and war and hold everyone hostage to their  lunatic ideas and antiquated beliefs.

Palestinian failure to do any of these things is the true root of the conflict and the real cause of the plight they find themselves in. Call them anti-semitic or not, but the misguided rants of ‘celebrities’ like the one at the Toronto International Film Festival are disingenuous and actually make things worse for Palestinians because they reinforce their feeling of victimhood and place no blame or onus on them for anything, least of all creating or solving their own problems.

A Palestinian Tel Aviv? Not if the dolts who signed the TIFF letter have anything to do with it.

Now there’s something to be really angry about.

Palestinians make peace impossible, Re: What are your hopes for Mid East peace?, BBC News Website, September 3, 2009

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

There is no chance of peace between Palestinians and Israel in the foreseeable future because Palestinians make it imposible.

In order for peace to occur Palestinians must reject violence, recognize and accept Israel and get rid of the religious fanatics and islamofascists in their midst who do nothing but spout lies and propaganda, sow terror and hatred and war and hold everyone else hostage to their antiquated and lunatic beliefs. Since there is absolutely no reason to think that this will happen anytime soon there is also absolutely no reason to think that peace will happen anytime soon either, no matter who intervenes.

This of course includes President Obama, who in fact is making things worse because he is failing to deal with the real cause of the conflict, which is the inability or unwillingness of Palestinians to do any of the above.

It really is their own fault you know.

Muhammad decision raises questions, Re: Muhammad and man at Yale, Washington Times, August 31, 2009

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

Jytte Klaussen, author of “The Cartoons That Shook the World” should sue Yale University for loss of revenue over it’s inept and cowardly decision to publish her book without printing the cartoons themselves or other depictions of Muhammad that were also originally in it. The decision does more than violate one of our most cherished and fundamental Western values, freedom of the press, and capitulate once again to Muslim religious extremism, it also casts doubt about the veracity and accuracy of everything Yale did decide to publish.

What else didn’t they include? What did they distort? Why would anyone who wants an accurate rendering of the publication of the cartoons in Denmark in 2005 and their aftermath buy Klaussen’s book given the publishers willingness to censor material it deems sensitive or inflammatory, regardless of it’s relevance? I certainly wouldn’t and I have no doubt many other potential buyers wouldn’t either. The impact on sales and Ms. Klaussen’s income is obvious.

Do us all a favor Jytte and sue Yale. In addition to loss of income you could probably make a strong case for damage to your professional reputation as well since Yale’s decision to publish a palpably incomplete manuscript under your name could easily lead to questions about your qualifications and competence.