Friday, April 20, 2007


a once proud nation reduced by the whims of the pathetic...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

guns in the gun free zone..

i'm in favor of sad-free..
Let's Make America a "Sad-Free Zone"
By Ann Coulter April 19, 2007

From the attacks of 9-11 to Monday's school shooting, after every mass murder there is an overwhelming urge to "do something" to prevent a similar attack.

But since Adam ate the apple and let evil into the world, deranged individuals have existed.
Most of the time they can't be locked up until it's too late. It's not against the law to be crazy – in some jurisdictions it actually makes you more viable as a candidate for public office.

It's certainly not against the law to be an unsociable loner. If it were, Ralph Nader would be behind bars right now, where he belongs. Mass murder is often the first serious crime unbalanced individuals are caught committing – as appears to be in the case of the Virginia Tech shooter.

The best we can do is enact policies that will reduce the death toll when these acts of carnage occur, as they will in a free and open society of 300 million people, most of whom have cable TV.
Only one policy has ever been shown to deter mass murder: concealed-carry laws. In a comprehensive study of all public, multiple-shooting incidents in America between 1977 and 1999, the inestimable economists John Lott and Bill Landes found that concealed-carry laws were the only laws that had any beneficial effect.

And the effect was not insignificant. States that allowed citizens to carry concealed handguns reduced multiple-shooting attacks by 60 percent and reduced the death and injury from these attacks by nearly 80 percent.

Apparently, even crazy people prefer targets that can't shoot back. The reason schools are consistently popular targets for mass murderers is precisely because of all the idiotic "Gun-Free School Zone" laws.

From the people who brought you "zero tolerance," I present the Gun-Free Zone! Yippee! Problem solved! Bam! Bam! Everybody down! Hey, how did that deranged loner get a gun into this Gun-Free Zone?

It isn't the angst of adolescence. Plenty of school shootings have been committed by adults with absolutely no reason to be at the school, such as Laurie Dann, who shot up the Hubbard Woods Elementary School in Winnetka, IL, in 1988; Patrick Purdy, who opened fire on children at Cleveland Elementary School in Stockton, CA, in 1989; and Charles Carl Roberts, who murdered five schoolgirls at an Amish school in Lancaster County, PA, last year.

Oh, by the way, the other major "Gun-Free Zone" in America is the post office.

But instantly, on the day of the shooting at Virginia Tech, the media were already promoting gun control and pre-emptively denouncing right-wingers who point out that gun control enables murderers rather than stopping them. Liberals get to lobby for gun control, but we're disallowed from arguing back. That's how good their arguments are. They're that good.

Needless to say, Virginia Tech is a Gun-Free School Zone – at least until last Monday. The gunman must not have known. Imagine his embarrassment! Perhaps there should be signs.
Virginia Tech even prohibits students with concealed-carry permits from carrying their guns on campus. Last year, the school disciplined a student for carrying a gun on campus, despite his lawful concealed-carry permit. If only someone like that had been in Norris Hall on Monday, this massacre could have been ended a lot sooner.

But last January, the Virginia General Assembly shot down a bill that would have prevented universities like Virginia Tech from giving sanctuary to mass murderers on college campuses in Virginia by disarming students with concealed-carry permits valid in the rest of the state.

Virginia Tech spokesman Larry Hincker praised the legislature for allowing the school to disarm lawful gun owners on the faculty and student body, thereby surrendering every college campus in the state to deranged mass murderers, saying: "I'm sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly's actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus."

Others disagreed. Writing last year about another dangerous killer who had been loose on the Virginia Tech campus, graduate student Jonathan McGlumphy wrote: "Is it not obvious that all students, faculty and staff would have been safer if (concealed handgun permit) holders were not banned from carrying their weapons on campus?"

If it wasn't obvious then, it is now.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

war posturing..

the looming Israeli, iranian showdown is heating up.. it could be that Israel and US forces strike a serious setback to the iranian nuclear plan, killing invested soviet engineers, creating the stage for a larger escalation.. we could certainly see a 2 front war opened up on Israel from the north and south, allowing iran to use it's proxy hizballah and puppet syria to inflict losses on Israel. Israel will more than likely be less inclined to offer a disorganized response as they did last summer, which could result in significant losses for both hizballah and syria.. it would not be out of the question to see syria use chemical/biological weapons on Israel, eliciting a nuclear response.

the summer could be rocky..

Espionage Galore under a Middle East Nuclear Cloud
DEBKAfile Special Analysis
April 17, 2007, 9:19 PM (GMT+02:00)

It sounded like a contest.
On Tuesday, April 17, the Shin Bet intelligence service reported Iranian intelligence had intensified its efforts to recruit Israelis as spies, targeting former Iranians applying for visas to visit their families. One young man had been snared and paid “expenses” for enlisting a friend in security and collecting information. The Shin Bet detained him on landing home, before he did any harm.

Two hours later, in Cairo, a nuclear engineer Mohammed Gaber, was accused by Prosecutor-General Abdul-Maquid Mahmoud of spying on Egypt’s nuclear program on behalf of the Mossad, which was said to have paid him $17,000. An Irishman and Japanese were sought in connection with the affair. Israel dismissed the charge as another of Cairo’s unfounded spy myths, whose dissemination was not conducive to good relations.

Neither case is isolated. Two days earlier, the Israeli-Arab parliamentarian Azmi Beshara admitted from a safe distance to the Qatar-based al Jazeera TV channel that he was under suspicion of spying for Hizballah during its war with Israel and would not be returning home any time soon.

Add on the US defense secretary Robert Gates’ visits to Jordan, Israel and Egypt this week reportedly to coordinate and oversee preparations connected to a potential military operation against Iran and, in the view of DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources, these espionage rumbles denote a far greater upheaval boililng up below ground.

Most can be traced one way or another to the mysterious disappearance of the Iranian general Ali Reza Asgari from Istanbul in February. Tehran’s job description of the missing general – a former deputy defense minister, who also worked with the Lebanese Hizballah in the 1980 - is correct as far as it goes. But the failure to bring it up to date is an attempt to obfuscate the fact that, at the time of his disappearance, he headed Iran’s Middle East spy networks.
The cases disclosed Tuesday may be just the tip of the iceberg, with more spy dramas on the way. But even at this early stage of a potential intelligence earthquake, certain conclusions are indicated.

Firstly, Israeli will soon have no choice but to declare Iran an enemy state and ban Israeli travel to the Islamic Republic for the first time in the 28 years since Ayatollah Khomeini’s revolution. Surprisingly, Israelis are still legally permitted to visit Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Iran.

The Shin Bet did not need to publicize Iran’s intense hunt for Israeli spies in order to stop those visits; there are other ways. The espionage case would not have been brought out in the open without the knowledge of the relevant ministers – certainly not a graphic account of how the Iranian consulate in Istanbul, whence Gen. Asgari vanished, doubles as the distribution center for visas to Iran and a recruiting center for spies. Israelis applying for visas are obliged to deposit their Israeli passports there and issued with travel documents which gain them entry to Tehran. This process is drawn out to enable Iranian intelligence agents to make their first pitch to the targeted Israeli. It is followed up after he enters Iran.

The Shin Bet’s sudden outburst of transparency indicates that the scene is being set for a major diplomatic, military or intelligence step in the summer. This time, the Israeli government will not repeat at least one of the mistakes committed in July 2006, when it refused to declare that Israel was at war and the Hizballah an enemy, even after its forces crossed in to northern Israel, kidnapped two soldiers and let loose with a Katyusha barrage.

Israel is now putting the horse before the cart and declaring Iran an enemy country before the event.

It is therefore vital to deter Israeli nationals from visiting Iran in advance of potential Middle East hostilities. If Iran is involved, even through its allies or the Hizballah, Israelis in the Islamic Republic would be in danger of being taken captive or hostage.

Israel’s latest posture and precautions are likely to have the dual effect of raising Middle East tensions and placing Iran’s ancient Jewish community, reduced now to 25,000, in jeopardy.

“Israeli spy rings” may soon be “uncovered” by Iranian security agents.

Second, the Middle East has embarked on a nuclear arms race. It is no secret that at last month’s Arab summit in Riyadh, the Saudi ruler strongly urged his fellows to unite their national nuclear programs under a single roof. Though played down, this was the summit’s most important decision – not the so-called Saudi peace plan, although it made the most waves. It was a step intended to produce an Arab nuclear option versus the Iranian weapons program.

Every aspect of the unified Arab nuclear program is therefore extraordinarily sensitive and hemmed in with exceptional security measures. Each has become a prime intelligence target - and not only for Israel. Hence the song and dance the Egyptian prosecutor general made Tuesday of an alleged Israeli spy network said to operate out of Hong Kong, with an Irish and a Japanese agent charged with planting Israeli espionage software in Egyptian nuclear program’s computers, together with an Egyptian engineer. Egyptian intelligence was making sure to warn off any Egyptian tempted to work for Israeli intelligence, just as the Shin Bet was cautioning Israelis to beware of falling into Iranian intelligence traps.

The events of a single day brought Iran and its nuclear threat into sharp relief as the most pressing issues for Israel. Relations with the Palestinians and Syria, on which so many words are poured day by day, pale in comparison.

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the continuing evolution of the axis among iran, syria and russia falls right in to place with the words of Ezekiel 38.. what a very interesting time to be alive.
Israel's Next War
By P. David Hornik April 17, 2007

Ze’ev Schiff—left-of-center, not a hawk, and considered by many to be Israel’s foremost military analyst—cites security sources as saying those Qassams that Islamic Jihad has been raining on Gaza-bordering communities during the “ceasefire” with Hamas are in fact supplied by Hamas.
Hamas, the sources said, while “maintaining a front of abiding by the ceasefire,” is actually “emerging as the lynchpin of Palestinian terrorist activities against Israel.” That is believed to include providing Islamic Jihad with Russian-made 16-kilometer-range Grad rockets, already used last year to target the town of Ashkelon with its strategic facilities.
An analysis last month already warned that Hamas is “improving its rocket capabilities” while “seeking to build anti-tank and anti-aircraft systems that will neutralize Israel’s current ability to easily penetrate Gaza.”
The deteriorating situation in the south led Brig.-Gen. (ret.) Tzvika Fogel, formerly chief of staff for Southern Command, to warn on Israel’s Channel 10 that Israel faces two choices: to “continue its ostrich-like stance” until the Gaza terror forces mount a surprise attack, or to launch a full-scale preemptive attack of its own.

Meanwhile, shifting the lens to the north, last week the head of Israeli Military Intelligence, Maj.-Gen. Amos Yadlin, reported to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that Syria is “purchasing massive amounts of ground-to-ground and anti-tank missiles from Russia”—a country whose name tends to turn up in these contexts—and that, while “there is a low probability that Syria will initiate a war against Israel,” Syria could launch attacks in the Golan Heights even though it could lead to war.

Another report gave an even more ominous picture of an “unprecedented military buildup in Syria,” including the deployment of 300 home-manufactured Scud missiles just north of the Golan Heights, the establishment of new commando units, and a spike in training for urban and guerrilla warfare.

A source in IDF Northern Command said that “Syria saw the difficulty the IDF had during the fighting inside the southern Lebanese villages [last summer] and now . . . wants to draw us—in the event of a war—into battles in built-up areas where they think they will have the upper hand.”

And over in Lebanon itself, the fallout from last summer’s war is just as negative and the prognosis no better. In his same testimony to the Knesset committee last week, Maj.-Gen. Yadlin noted that up to several hundred Al Qaeda members have arrived in Lebanon with the aim of attacking UNIFIL and other Western targets; and that Hezbollah remains entrenched in southern Lebanon and keeps amassing large quantities of arms from Syria and Iran.

Rounding out the circle by returning to the south, Yadlin also said some Al Qaeda operatives have infiltrated Gaza as well, and that Hamas is gaining financial and political strength while its members receive training in Syria and Iran.

Overall, “the MI chief stressed that Iran continues to provide funding and weapons to Syria, Hamas, and Hezbollah, and has close military and intelligence coordination with Syria.” Add Russia to the mix and the picture is complete: a Shiite-Sunni-Russian terror-military axis seeking to surround, pressure, and harass Israel and ultimately eradicate it.

Tragically, this is happening at a time when Israel has a government hobbled by incompetence, unpopularity, scandals, infighting, and delusory dovishness, and that, apart from stepped-up training for some IDF units, is essentially doing nothing about the growing threats. It does not help that Israel’s U.S. ally keeps obsessively choreographing diplomatic dances with the likes of PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas, the Saudis, and the Arab League with which Israel dutifully complies—achieving nothing except to further project weakness to Israel’s enemies and lull the parts of the Israeli public that are eager to be lulled.

As Schiff points out in another analysis, it was the reluctance to enter a two-front war that led Israel to allow Hezbollah’s major military buildup in southern Lebanon in the first place. After Israel pulled out of southern Lebanon in 2000 against the advice of most of the IDF top brass, Prime Minister Ehud Barak and then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon found themselves facing a Palestinian terror onslaught mounted from the West Bank and Gaza and did not want to further complicate matters by doing something about Hezbollah in Lebanon.

So Israel, Schiff notes, “never once struck at the convoys transferring the missiles to Lebanon, and never struck even one Hezbollah missile warehouse, or even the short-range rockets near the border.” The end result was that Israel found itself at war on two fronts anyway—when Hamas attacked from Gaza and kidnapped a soldier last June, and Hezbollah followed suit the next month with an attack and kidnapping from Lebanon; and now faces the prospect of a further two-front war against enemies with enhanced capabilities.

Hope resides mainly in the interim report later this month of the Winograd Committee, set up to investigate the failures in last summer’s war and also expected to address the whole period of 2000-2006. Sufficiently harsh conclusions against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert could lead him to resign or cause other political ferment leading to new elections. As time goes on and Israel, aside from antiterror policing work in the West Bank, remains almost entirely passive against the growing threats, it does not appear that Olmert’s government has the will or ability to do anything about them, and its continued tenure appears to spell disaster.

If there is a chance—apart from a strike on Iran that would alter the region’s strategic balance—for Israel to avoid another two-front entanglement, it lies mainly in regaining its deterrence by making an effective move in Gaza. A hard-enough blow to Hamas and its friends there could make Hezbollah and Syria think twice about starting more trouble in the north. But there may be little time left, and such an outcome requires a functioning government in Jerusalem. It also calls for a Washington able to look past short-term diplomatic concerns and give Israel the backing it needs.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

imus(t) post this..

another well written piece on the imus fiasco..

Imus go down to the idiocy again
April 15, 2007

I was at LaGuardia the other day. Nothing out of the ordinary. Just the usual four-hour delay brought on by yet another of these April snowstorms Al Gore has arranged as a savvy marketing gimmick for his global warming documentary. Anyway, as always when you're at the gate for hours on end, there's nothing to do but watch CNN. I gather air traffic delays now account for 87 percent of CNN's audience. If it's just a routine holdup of two or three hours because the gate agent hasn't shown up, you know you'll be out of there before Wolf Blitzer's said goodnight. But, if it's something serious, like a light breeze at O'Hare, you know you'll be watching Larry King right through to the plug for tomorrow night's full hour with Tina Louise.

So I had the pleasure of sampling a typical evening's lineup of Don Imus coverage, from Wolf bringing us up to speed on the various networks that have fired him to Paula Zahn hosting a balanced panel of three African Americans and a guilt-ridden honky. It would have been a bad day for Ahmadinejad to drop the big one because nothing was going to prize CNN from their Imus-In-the-Morning-Noon-and-Night coverage.

Pundits are supposed to have opinions on everything, but to be honest I had no strong views on the scandal roiling the nation. I've never listened to the Imus show. The closest I get is if I happen to be driving around of an afternoon listening to WXZO from Burlington, Vt., and I hear one of their promos for the show, usually consisting of a 60-second highlight. In all the years of that condensed acquaintanceship with Imus, no "highlight" has ever struck me as funny or insightful. But I assumed that was simply because I'd left it too late: As with "Days of Our Lives" or "As the World Turns," if you've missed the first seven or eight decades it's hard to get into it.

So I don't know whether calling the Rutgers basketball ladies "nappy-headed hos" is a mean old white guy's racist slur or an artful parodic jest on the way black women are talked about by black men -- or at least by the ones on the record charts. After all, the only way mean old white folks know the expressions "nappy" or "ho" is because they heard 'em from hip young black folks. Indeed, one could argue it's a tribute to how non-racist America is that an elderly Caucasian would wish to talk like a gangsta rapper. What was it Martin Luther King dreamed of? A nation where men would be judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their characterizations?

Alas, it's not that simple. Apparently, when two hip-hoppers are up on stage doing their "Who was that ho I saw you with last night?"/"That was no ho, that was my bitch" shtick, they're just keepin' it real. When a white guy does it, he's just keepin' it real unlikely he'll find gainful employment again. Unless, of course, the networks are now proposing to apply the Imus standard to all performers, in which case the Grammy Awards will last 10 minutes (Best Liner Notes on a Polka Album and Best Tony Bennett Celebrity Duets CD of the Last Two Months).

It's a good rule of thumb in American scandals that, no matter how big an idiot someone is, the outrage over him will always be more idiotic. Let us take the easiest ones first. "I've received hundreds, if not thousands of e-mails, both internal and external, from people with very strong views about what should happen," said Steve Capus, president of NBC News. "And many of them are people who have worked at NBC News for decades, people who put their lives on the line covering wars and things like that." Is that a lobby group yet? War Correspondents Against Racism? Capus was taking no chances. "This decision was made after listening to the people who work for NBC News, who have placed a trust and respect the trust that America has given us."

Is it written somewhere in the Media Code of Ethics that you're not allowed to fire anyone without sounding like a pompous self-regarding bore? Playing catch-up and terminating Imus 24 hours after MSNBC, CBS chairman Les Moonves left NBC's "trust" and "respect" and "respect for the trust" in the dust: "We are now presented with a significant opportunity to expand on our record on issues of diversity, race and gender. We intend to seize that opportunity as we move forward together." That sounds like a helluva morning show you're developing there, Mr. Chairman. Unless it's just off-the-peg meaningless pap to be forgotten as soon as the press release is shoved in the filing cabinet.

Needless to say, Moonves fired Imus after first meeting with the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the Rev. Al Sharpton. I have a dream that my children will one day live in a nation where a white guy can be fired for racist remarks without his employers having to prostrate themselves before clapped out professional grievance mongers and shakedown artists. But dream on. Two men who slandered the Duke lacrosse players not just as racists but as rapists (by the way, has the Rev. Jackson come through on his promise to pay for the "victim" to go to college?) are the go-to guys when it comes to judging rhetorical excess in respect of varsity sports teams. Surely even a network president isn't such a craven squish he can go through a meeting like that with a straight face?

And saddest of all were the Rutgers basketball gals themselves. Almost a century and a half after the abolition of slavery, 40 years after the civil rights era, a group of young black women who've achieved great success went on TV and teared up because of a cheap crack by an over-the-hill shock jock. As a female correspondent to the Powerline Web site commented:
"Here are these tough women on top of the world and they are so fragile that a remark knocks them down. Hey, why wouldn't they have said 'F--- you? Who the heck is this fool Imus? We are queens of national basketball and there is no stopping us now. We can be and do anything we choose to be or do. . . . We don't need Al Sharpton to protect us. . . . ' But no, they look devastated and say they are damaged irreparably.''

Only in America: a team of champions who think they're victims, an old white fool who talks like a gangsta rapper and multi-millionaires grown rich on race-baiting who promote themselves as guardians of civility. Good thing there are no real problems to worry about.

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