Monday, October 20, 2003

Not true followers of Islam

General William “Jerry” Boykin non-apologizes to any heathens offended by his remarks. "I do believe that radical extremists have tried to use Islam as a cause for attacks on America," he said. "As I have stated before, they are not true followers of Islam." Right, and as you’ve also stated before, followers of Islam are idol-worshippers. So the militants are not TRUE followers of FALSE gods, but rather FALSE followers of FALSE gods, who should try instead to be TRUE followers of their FALSE gods.

Boykin, I don’t think I’ve said before, was also an adviser on the Waco siege.

As I’ve pointed out in the past, the British will bet on anything. Anyway, if you want to bet on the outcome of the BBC’s competition for the UK’s favorite book, the bookies are favoring Pride & Prejudice 4:1, although if it turns out to be Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings, the internet will be to blame. Great Expectations is 8:1, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy 25:1.

Job opening for our outgoing governor?

From the WashPost: “President Bush said Sunday that he is willing to commit to a written guarantee not to attack North Korea in exchange for steps by the country toward abandoning its nuclear weapons programs.” So Bush made NK nervous with that whole axis-of-evil business, which as we know, but the Northies don’t, was just a rhetorical thing so the entire “axis” wouldn’t be Muslim, made them more nervous by refusing to sign a simple non-aggression pact, and now he wants to bargain about it. Regardless of whether NK should have nukes, if a paranoid nuclear power we don’t intend to attack asks for us to write down that we don’t intend to attack it, why not just fucking do it? They are using an implicit threat of military attack to leverage NK on nukes. Also, Bush is talking about NK disposing of its nuclear program in a verifiable way, which would be ok, even realizing that he means he wants to be given information on NK that the CIA can’t get, except for one thing: NK is almost certainly lying about or exaggerating its nuclear capacity, so we could wind up demanding that they eliminate weapons they don’t have. Sound familiar?

Must-read on massacres by the US Army in Vietnam in 1967 of hundreds of civilians, the killing and torture of prisoners, burning of villages, accessorizing with cut-off ears, etc etc. Six months before My Lai, ten miles away. No one was punished. The army ran a secret investigation years later, even then taking a year to get started. And the whole thing remained a secret, although hundreds if not thousands of Americans and no doubt one or two Vietnamese and the entire hierarchy of the Pentagon knew about it. Soldiers did complain, and were told to shut up. The year before, Ward Just wrote in a book that a Tiger Force soldier had mailed ears of dead soldiers home to his wife. Read the story and think about what else has happened in recent decades that we know nothing about. The story was broken by the Toledo Blade, which will continue through Wednesday. The Post has a good overview, the Blade has interviews and much more detail, and excerpts in MP3 files, which I can’t listen to. A lot of ex-soldiers talked, 137 of them, suggesting they were just waiting to be asked. Here’s a cute tidbit: the 327th battalion was given an order to achieve a body count of, wait for it, 327. Another key fact: the time it took US soldiers to descend into total brutality after setting up in the province: one week.

The racist Swiss People’s Party got 28% of the vote, making it the largest party.

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