December 14, 2003

An early Christmas present

Saddam Hussein has been captured. He was, appropriately hiding in a six-foot-deep hole in the ground. He looks like Bad Santa. Oh happy day. More links to reactions around the blogs:

Viking Pundit.
A small victory.
Tim Blair.
Jeff Jarvis.

You should read the entries previous to and after the links as well. And they have links as well -- especially Jeff Jarvis, who has links to many Iraqi blogger reactions.

And if that wasn't enough happiness for one day, I also found out that iowahawk finally drank the Koolaid and got his very own blog! Hooray! (Iowahawk's comments have leavened many comment threads on LGF, Tim Blair, and elsewhere with wit and intelligence. Hey that's a pretty good writeup on just one cup of coffee...)

Me? It's raining and chilly but I have this sudden urge to get out of the house. Laters.

Update: The word from Omar in Iraq:

It's the justice day.
I'm speechless.
I'm crying.
The tyrants' hour has finally came. I went down to the streets to share the joy with my brothers. This is our day, the day of all the oppressed and good people on earth.
Tears of joy filled the eyes of all the people.
Saddam, the coward, hides in a hole, shaking in fear from being captured.
Not a single bullet was fired, without any resistance, God, he was even cooperative! The mighty tyrant, who exploited all our country's fortune for his personal protection, surrenders like the cowered I expected him to be.
Yes, he should be prosecuted in Iraq. We will not allow anything else.

(Via Cold Fury.) I had to post this to Andrew Olmsted's* faint praise of Hesiod's cynical commentary on how this capture will allow Ba'athist terrorists to say they are now "fighting for freedom" or some such nonsense. Okay, Hesiod, I guess we should have left Saddam in his little hole, with maybe a stern lecture. Asshole. (No link to Hesiod; you can get to his spew from Olmsted's* site it you want.)

I've opened comments. Have a party.

*Spelling corrected.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:51 AM | Comments (12) | TrackBack

December 07, 2003

Life's Mad Pageant, etc.

I had to run around town yesterday, which in my present carless state (hinty hinty) means utilizing Orlando's fine public transportation system. The result is I am still feeling pretty wiped out, though I think that has partly to do with the fact that I think I have a sinus infection. (Unless it is that Deadly Killer Flu that is going around, yay.) Anyway, I had wanted to do at least a daily post thing on le Blog, but that isn't working out. Could it be, as this person sneers, that <SCREAM>Warbloggers</SCREAM> haven't had much to say lately because we (the Collective! You will be assimilated!) are afraid to "admit" the War Is a Failure™? Shyeah, right, you wish. (Dig Dipnut's replies in the comments and then this post.)

Apropos of this, I think that the thing that hurts antis the most re the Turkey Incident is the fact that this was how Bush was received by the troops in Iraq. For those too lazy to link, here's a sample:

Soldiers were hollering, cheering, and a lot of them were crying. There was not a dry eye at my table. When he stepped up to the cheering, I could clearly see tears running down his cheeks. It was the most surreal moment I've had in years. Not since my wedding and Aaron being born. Here was this man, our President, came all the way around the world, spending 17 hours on an airplane and landing in the most dangerous airport in the world, where a plane was shot out of the sky not six days before.

Dang. I happened to catch that scene on the teevee Evening Snooze. I know that if I was an anti I'd want to stab myself at the sight of all those soldiers cheering like mad, as opposed to the polite but cool (come on, let's admit it) reception Senator Clinton received.

Anyway, today is Pearl Harbor Day. Charles Austin has a new post up about it that you should read; Michele wonders if September 11th will be remembered the same way -- or forgotten the same way. All I can say is it would be nice if the band of psychos that currently have control of the Muslim world* could be dissuaded from their current course with less force 'n' violence than we had to use on the Japanese.

*This "band of psychos" is to be understood to consist of a small subset of the main bulk of Muslims who are, we are told, gentle, peace-loving, flower-gathering, pretty-thing-making, hobbitlike creatures or at least they are human just like you and me! I say this in a no-doubt futile effort to stave off the inevitable "Muslims Love Their Children Too" pop hit song by Sting or someone like that. Allah forbid.

Update: and here's an interview with someone who was at Pearl Harbor on that day, courtesy of the Lakeland Ledger.

Second Update: here's another commentary on Pearl Harbor/September 11th by Vicki of Liquid Courage.

PS: now, shitty as I feel, I think I'm going to have to walk to the store for some stronger cold medicine. Laters.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 27, 2003

A Thanksgiving Surprise

Wow. Just -- wow.

(Via A Small Victory and The Command Post.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:34 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

November 09, 2003

The grave's a fine and quiet place

Say, why did we invade Iraq? After all, those people were no threat to us! For instance, the people in these mass graves talked about here: they certainly weren't threatening us. Troops out of Iraq now!

(Via VodkaPundit.)

Oh -- and by the way, this post was an example of sarcasm. I have inserted this disclaimer on the advice (gleaned from Stephen Green's comment thread) of James Lileks. as a further enhancement to the cause of spreading understanding to all the idiots Concerned Readers™ out there, I will also say that Stephen Green's post meets with 100% Speenville Approval.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:43 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

November 06, 2003

You say you want a demonstration?

Zeyad has a few things to tell you.

Update: and here's a new Iraqi blogger, Alaa, who was inspired by Zeyad's blog to start one of his own.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:01 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

October 26, 2003

The Angry Left Behind

The Angry Left is stuck in the MAD era. What a sad place that is to be. No wonder so many of them seem to have learned their political philosophy from watching Frankie Goes to Hollywood's "Two Tribes" video. ("Puppets! Puppets will get the people on our side!")

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:33 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

October 11, 2003

"Everyone looks the same when they're on fire"

Before I start posting my oppressive, fascist opinions I have to run off to the store for some necessities. In the meantime, read this column by Jake Ryan, who was injured in last year's terrorist attack on Australians (and anyone else near them) in Bali. Then ask yourself (if you are one of the doubters) if there is any other way to stop terrorism than, well, stopping terrorists. (Via Tim Blair.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 05:29 PM | Comments (16) | TrackBack

October 09, 2003

That old black magic

Art vs. evil. Read.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:53 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 02, 2003

Join the cabal

In this article on the so-called "neoconservative cabal," Joshua Muravchik reminds us of the way we were, and why it changed:

But this brings us back at last to the question of the neocons' alleged current influence. How did their ideas gain such currency? Did they "hijack" Bush's foreign policy, right out from under his nose and the noses of Richard Cheney, Colin Powell, Donald Rumsfeld, and Condoleezza Rice--all members of the same team that, to hear the standard liberal version, was itself so diabolically clever that in the 2000 election it had stolen the presidency itself?

The answer is to be found not in conspiracy theories but in the terrorist outrage of September 11, 2001. Though it constituted a watershed in American history, this event was novel not in kind but only in scale. For roughly 30 years, Middle Eastern terrorists had been murdering Americans in embassies, barracks, airplanes, and ships--even, once before, in the World Trade Center. Except for a few criminal prosecutions and the lobbing of a few mostly symbolic shells, the U.S. response had been inert. Even under President Reagan, Americans fled in the wake of the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut, then the largest single attack we had suffered.

Terrorism, we were told, was an accepted way of doing politics in the Middle East. More than a handful of the regions governments openly supported it, and the PLO, an outfit steeped in terror, was the poster child of the Arab cause. Any strong response to this scourge would serve only to make the people of the region angrier at us, and generate still more terrorists.

On September 11, we learned in the most dreadful way that terrorists would not be appeased by our diffidence; quite the contrary. We saw--they themselves told us--that they intended to go on murdering us in ever larger numbers as long as they could. A sharp change of course was required, and the neoconservatives, who had been warning for years that terror must not be appeased, stood vindicated--much as, more grandly, Churchill was vindicated by Hitler's depredations after Munich.

(Via Damian Penny.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:47 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Toys for Iraq news

Via Michele, news that the first shipment of toys has arrived in Iraq.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 24, 2003

Spread the good news

Frank of IMAO has a very good idea on a way to counteract all the negative "news" the prop media is emitting about doings in Iraq.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:48 AM | Comments (21) | TrackBack

September 21, 2003

The Price of Pacifism

It's too high if these people are the ones who have to be abandoned. It makes me furious to read whine after whine from anti-war fools who claim that we never should have invaded Iraq. There are a lot of "never shoulds" when it comes to US doings with Iraq, but this particular invasion isn't one of them. But the antiwar contingent isn't really interested in Iraq or its people; they are too obsessed with their ridiculous, one-sided battle with a president they hate because (fill in the blank with some stupid, trivial reason). The Iraqi people and what they want matter not at all to the peace-at-any-price crew; in fact, happy, prosperous Iraqis give them one less victim to use as a prop for their bloated egos.

No, I don't much like pacifists these days. It's real easy to sit there on your ass and piously proclaim your disapproval of nasssty, dirty war and violence. Making speeches and forming Committees to Frown Sternly at Naughty Dictators are much easier than actually going into the places where the naughty dictators are; you don't have to get your hands dirty, and the press loves you because they get free coffee and donuts, and don't have to get shot at. Freedom of speech isn't a substitute for the necessity of action, but you won't hear that from the moralizers preaching on the sidelines.

Article via Random Jottings.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:23 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Spies and their enablers, Part 8415637

Concerning this story about a US Army Muslim chaplain being detained for possible spying:

Yee left the Army for Syria, where he received religious training. He returned to the U.S. military soon after.


(I also commented further here.)

Update: via Kathy Kinslet, this article in the Washington Post, which has further details Yee's conversion to Islam:

He converted to Islam about the time he served a stint in Saudi Arabia after the Persian Gulf War. After quitting the military, he spent four years studying Islam in Damascus, Syria, and returned to the United States a trained imam.

And we know what sort of Islam is practiced in Saudi Arabia. It's getting more and more difficult to ignore that imam behind the curtain...

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:30 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 18, 2003

Let there be love

These US Army veterans have made this kind offer to our Islamofascist friends.

(Via Apostablog.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:54 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 14, 2003

Lies, Damned Lies, and What Made You Think You Could Get Away With Lying Like That? Lies

Meryl Yourish fact-checks Reuter's ass. Again.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 12, 2003

And another thing...

What is this all this moaning about how "graphic," and "shocking" and "disturbing" the photos of the people falling off the World Trade Center are, and how we "shouldn't show these images" on teevee or on the internet or anywhere, because it is all somehow "too upsetting." What utter b.s. I don't remember all this fussing and fuming last year. Why is it suddenly too disturbing now?

Update: LOOK. REMEMBER. Or don't. You don't have to click.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:31 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

European blinders

Bjørn Stærk on the tendency by many Europeans to ignore or downplay the terrorist threat in their own countries in favor of trendy anti-Americanism:

Part of the problem is the investment we've made in the idea that the Americans had it coming, or at least are only making the problem worse by fighting back. This makes it even more difficult to swallow that we too are targets. The implications are too shattering for our worldview, so we take the easy way out, and downplay the danger. The terrorists will be more than willing to allow us this illusion - up to the very moment they strike.


Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:05 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 11, 2003


Well. Instead of saying anything about September 11th I ended up not saying anything at all. Except.... I'd like to thank Greg Hlatky for posting the quote that is now featured in my header. I think I used to have it up there, but I had forgotten about it.

And here is this from Richard Bennett's entry today about his memories of that day:

I've seen a lot of the world outside the United States, living in Libya as a child and in India, Singapore, and Malaysia as an adult, and I've seen a lot of politics as a former lobbyist in Sacramento, but this was beyond politics. It was also beyond the usual goofy fanaticism of the Muslim religion with its call to prayer five times a day, its strict dietary rules, its fear of women and its maniac fasting month when people sit on the curbs in Malaysia with bags of fruit juice in their hands waiting for the Imam's call to break their fast at the official sunset. This was insanity and a viciousness that breaks all the human boundaries around conflict and war and aggression. This was a direct attack on perfectly innocent people who had no stake in the governance of the Middle East, no responsibility for the backward condition of Arab states shackled to outmoded values by corrupt mullahs and political leaders mis-educated in Western universities suffering under the burden of fashionable ideas long ago and no interest in oppressing their counterparts halfway around the planet. This was beyond all of that, a new standard of bad behavior that could only be captured in old-fashioned words like "evil".


Update: what marc said, especially this:

I may not entirely like the way the war is being fought, but there is a war going on. One declared upon us. You can pretend it isn't or doesn't have to be there, but don't give me a surprised look should the gun ever come to your head. The choice is not between fighting this war the way it is being fought now or walking away. The war will be waged by them whether we fight back or not. The division of with us or with the terrorists was not made by the President, merely acknowledged. The terrorists are the ones who divided up this world. So you're damned right I'm going to be angry. I'm angry that I've been marked for death along with everyone else in this world. Not subjugation, but death. I'm angry that when they attack, my death is the goal, not an unfortunate part of getting their target. I'm angry that I am that target, not because I'm special or that my name is on some list, but because I exist. I'm angry that should these people manage to kill me, someone else they want dead will shake their head and try to blame me in the shameful hope that their tsk-tsking somehow protects them.
Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:17 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 09, 2003

Anger is an energy

Apparently there was some sort of PBS show on the World Trade Center, that was stuffed with useless commentary from the usual pack of fools. In her commentary on the piece, Sheila says some very wise things about the value of anger. Sample:

We need to remember. Not to dwell, not to sink into victimhood, cherishing our wounds. No. We need to remember, because we will need our anger to get through the tough times ahead. We will need to remember what was done to us, in order to face the challenges. Are we up to it?

Read the whole thing. (Via Give War a Chance.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 07:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 07, 2003

Planes, trains, and September 11th

Once again, the rumor (long debunked) that Bin Laden family members were ferried "secretly" out of the country while the post-September 11th flight ban was still on is oozing back into the light, here, and in the comments here. This really pisses me off.

You know, it hasn't been even two years. They are still burying people killed in the attacks -- or at least burying what they can of them. Another videotape of planes going into the Towers has surfaced. It is still clear, at least to me, that Americans had war declared openly on them by power-hungry totalitarian fanatics, and we can't afford to go back to our previous stance of "Oh, they are just blowing off steam, ignore them, they are only foreigners." But some people would rather focus their rage on the victim, because that victim was us. This stance of -- I don't know what to call them, blame-the-victimers? -- reminds me of the attitude of wife-beaters towards the spouses they have just battered: "It's your fault, you made me angry. I wouldn't hurt you if you didn't make me angry."

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:17 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

August 21, 2003

Reruns of summer

Ilyka Damen is tired of seeing/hearing/reading the same old idiot arguments, and is suffering from a case of Blogger's Burnout. So am I, which is why I haven't been posting much lately. Yesterday's headline in the Orlando Sentinel concerning the terrorist bombings in Baghdad and Jerusalem were almost as large as the ones for (I think -- I never was able to get my hands on a copy of that day's edition) those for World Trade Center attack front page articles. All I could muster up was the thought: "Gee, didn't know they cared so much," and weak irritation at the usual whinings about how this will mess up the "road map" -- which I believe refers to the latest appeasement peace plan, not AAA's newest Middle East travel edition. Whatever. Palestinian pals, Castro cuddlers, Saddamite sycophants, Islamist loon lovers -- it is pointless to argue with them, and by now you know what I think of the lot. (If you don't, consult the archives.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:18 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 24, 2003

Deadlier than the male

Via the comments to this post, a news report on the capture of an Iraqi general -- by a soldier named Heather. You don't mess with Heathers, man.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 07:33 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

July 21, 2003


Don't mess with a man who knows how to make an outline. Steven Den Beste has the plan. (This also heralds the return of that Hesiod Theogeny (sic) guy. Hadn't heard from him in a while. Oh joy.)

To continue: this assessment of the War on Terror's "root causes" and goals will strike those people who think in terms of Big Bully USA vs. Small, Weak, Helpless (if Terrorist-Harboring) Nations as lacking in elements conducive to feelings of warm fuzziness, but such is life.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:45 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 24, 2003

Sitting ducks

David at Cronaca comments on reports that British forces in Iraq, whose "friendly" cloth caps and lack of "intimidating" body armor had been contrasted favorably with the scary, brutish American forces, have been taking casualties. He is wondering when the anti-flak-jacket folks are going to make note of this unpleasant side effect of dropping your guard in a war zone. Well, let's listen:

Crickets chirping.

Oh well, I'm sure they are busy typing up retractions. Yeah.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:03 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 13, 2003

Eden restored

The Marsh Arabs are reclaiming their land:

HAWR AL HAMMAR, Iraq -- It's 100 degrees at noon, the hour when the sky itself seems to melt into chrome-colored lakes--rippling pools that shimmer like mirrors in the vast salt pans of southern Iraq. These days, however, those liquid sheets of light are no mirage. They are real water--and one of the most poignant symbols of liberation since the fall of Saddam Hussein.

"This will bring back the fish, the birds and the animals," said Jawad Mutashir, a grizzled Marsh Arab who came to watch, for the pure joy of it, water from the Euphrates River gurgling back into the long-dead swamp that had been his ancestral home.

Bands of impoverished villagers upstream had cut the levees that Hussein built expressly to destroy Iraq's sprawling wetlands. Unshackled for the first time in years, the Tigris and Euphrates rivers were now refilling thousands of acres of dry marsh.

"Thanks be to Allah for giving our water back!" declared grinning old Mutashir, one of thousands of nomads displaced by Hussein's cataclysmic reclamation projects. His dingy robes flapping about him, he hugged himself with his scrawny arms and added, "Thanks be to George Bush!"

More than two months after Baghdad fell to coalition troops, an extraordinary act of cultural defiance is unfolding almost unnoticed on the burning plains of southern Iraq.

I'm sure someone somewhere will spin this to say that the Bush Junta™ is really doing some dastardly thing by allowing this to happen (all those poisons Rumsfeld sold to Saddam Hussein are going to leach into the marshes and turn all the Marsh Arabs into three-eyed mutants!). Or else the critics will say that Bush is cursing at the happiness of the Arabs there and trying to come up with ways to cover the marshes with Ooooiiilllll.

(Via Instapundit.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:16 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

May 25, 2003

The latest from Iraq

Salam Pax has new stuff up. Interesting. (Blowspot™ is working today. Visit while you can.)

Via Jeff Jarvis.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:46 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

May 24, 2003

Pity Party Cancelled

Oh look -- it seems that Saddam-offspring Uday has surfaced, sorta, and wants to cut a deal. See, he's afraid (in traditional spawn-of-evil-leader fashion) of his own people getting hold of him. But gosh, we don't seem to be too interested. I'm afraid that this time my atom-sized violin doesn't want to be bothered to play a sad tune for his plight. (Via Lt. Smash.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:37 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

May 20, 2003

News on the widows of the Bali terrorist attack

In this post I expressed my ire at what some of the Balinese widows of last year's terrorist attack on their island were being put through. But there is good news -- they have some help. Read the last comment in the post and check out AdoptA.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:17 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Cruel and Unusual?

Concerning the discussion of what sort of music to "break" Iraqi POWs, I think that we shouldn't try soppy pop music that makes the normal red-blooded American sick to his or her stomach. In my admittedly limited experience (one trip to Europe, watching those European music awards shows on cable teevee, going to Vietnamese restaurants here in Orlando, seeing those endless commercials for the inexplicably beloved Nana Moskouri's "hit songs" collections) the Whole Rest of the World has a bottomless appetite for soppy pop music (such as the songs in this list, especially ones like "Sometimes When We Touch.") I'd try some Death Metal instead -- maybe some Cannibal Corpse or Malevolent Creation. Yes, those are real bands.

I forgot to add: the year I went to Europe (1981) there was no excape in any country I went to from ABBA's "Fernando" (the last on Iowahawk's list). Everywhere we went that song was playing on some loudspeaker system somewhere. Even Scotland.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:43 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack


The recent World War II Remembrance Day ceremonies in the Netherlands were disrupted and desecrated by Moroccan youths. Here's a portion of an account by Peaktalk on these incidents:

I wanted to share this with you as Dutch newspapers last week reported that Moroccan youths had disturbed a number of these ceremonies throughout the country earlier this week. In one instance by throwing eggs onto participants and in another by playing football with the wreaths. The absolute bottom was reached when during the ceremony in one of Amsterdam’s suburbs a number of these youths shouted “we must kill the Jews”. This under any circumstance is a grieving and depraved comment, but to shout it out in a city from which 100,000 Jews disappeared never to return during the most sensitive of commemorations is beyond belief and it was no doubt perpetrated on purpose. I am not writing this as yet another piece seeking to provide further evidence of the ever growing levels of anti-Semitism Europe, although that would certainly warrant a post on this site. What happened last week goes well beyond anti-Semitism.

Via Dilacerator, who says incidents like these are being covered up.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:07 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

May 18, 2003

Warm Featherette

The American Imperial Cultural Hegemon continues its invasion of the pristine sands of the Middle East! Oh the humanity! When will it end, when????

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:33 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

May 17, 2003

Bread and Nuances

Concerning the recent bombings in Morocco, I have been reading here and there (most recently in the comments to this post) some expressions of astonishment that Belgian interests were apparently among those targeted, since Belgium is currently pursuing efforts to set up some sort of international kangaroo court with which to try upstart Americans "war criminals" like General Franks. Of course this astonishment has a sarcastic edge; I don't think that many people, at least on the pro-war-against-terrorists side, are really surprised that Al Qaeda & Co. are not telegraphing their attacks according to who is currently attempting to appease them, or whatever it is the Belgian contingent thinks it is doing with its "antiwar" posturing. At the risk of repeating myself, these terrorists are Arab supremacists, and they care not a whit for the good opinions and peace offerings of Western infidels. If such antics momentarily give their cause a boost by diverting American/allied efforts against them they are fine with that, but it makes no difference to them in the long run, because as far as the terrorists are concerned we are all worm food. And they just might put their "appeasers" up against the wall first, just on general principles. No one, even evil sons of nazis, likes people who betray their own.

This isn't deep wisdom: I figured all that out about five minutes after the World Trade Center was attacked. I'm not going to make any claim to being a Big Brain either: I garnered my deep wisdom by sitting on my ass reading mostly junk like science fiction and fantasy, watching crap movies on tv, and occasionally talking to my fellow clueless humans. I am not particularly well-traveled: I've been to Europe exactly once, over twenty years ago. I learned that they sure do love soppy pop music there, and everything is uphill except in the Netherlands. I've been to college -- in the parlance, I have "some college" education. I may never finish, because there is one thing I now know and that is that you don't go to college to get educated. Maybe that is why all these eggheads with their PhDs in PoliSci and Sociology are so solid between the ears about this little Islamofascist problem: they actually thought they were learning something while they were being filled up with the latest kewl theories. Then again, I could be wrong. Maybe all the terrorists want is a hug.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:55 PM | Comments (17) | TrackBack

May 16, 2003

The latest terrorist attack

It was in Morocco this time -- in Casablanca. That's ironic, in a way. I just happened to catch the story on CNN when I came in and turned the tv on. The Arabs are pissed -- at Al Qaeda & Co. The Islamofascisti continue to shoot off their own feet, dig their own grave, hoist themselves by their own petard, and so on.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

May 12, 2003

On the latest terrorist fun and games

They were just yammering on CNN or something about the recent terrorist attacks in Riyadh. Jesus, who cares what the group that did it calls themselves? Let's just drop all this "was it Al Qaeda? Or some other (insert some Arabic phrase)?" nonsense and call them something generic, like "the usual bunch of cretins." And their motives are no big mystery; I am sure I know why the cretins blew up stuff in Saudi Arabia this time. They want to get rid of all the Westerners there, and then all the rest of the foreigners, Muslim though all those Indians and Indonesians and Malaysians might be. The Usual Bunch of Cretins are Arab supremacists just like the Nazis were "Aryan" supremacists. They are just another flavor of terror pie, like Bin Laden and his Taliban crew, and that joker we just kicked out of Iraq. It's all from the same shelf of fly-specked, half-baked goods.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:17 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

May 10, 2003

Mullah over this

Despite his reputation in certain quarters as some sort of rightwing ranter, Glenn Reynolds rarely seems to get really mad. Here's a rare example of anger from the Instapundit:

HERE'S THE LATEST on jailed Iranian blogger Sina Motallebi. He's accused of selling "depraved" videos -- of weddings.

Note to Iranian mullahs: you're utterly pathetic. You are neither feared, nor respected for your piety. You're just a joke, in the eyes of the world and, these days, your own people.

Go to the link in the quote and you'll see his anger is more than justified. Stupid mullahs.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:11 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

May 09, 2003

The time of the manuscripts

Years of Pain, And the Words To Describe It -- Hidden Writings Portray Life as Enemy of Hussein:

But now Hussein was gone and Samarrai's manuscripts were in full view. They spilled from manila folders piled high on wooden shelves where space had been cleared for their welcome. When Basra fell to British forces on April 7, Samarrai felt safe enough to thumb through an entire work without fear. When the Baghdad government collapsed two days later, he saw what looked like deliverance and reunited his works in plain sight.

(Via Random Jottings.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:23 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

May 04, 2003

Bombs hideaway

I was thinking about WMDs (no -- really!) and then this post at Mr. Helpful's blog caused some of the random thoughts I had coalesce into something more or less coherent, considering my lack of expertise in this area and in all areas military, strategic, and political. Well, I guess that is why he is Mr. Helpful.

Like many people, Mr. Helpful is antsy about the US finding the big bombs and stuff. But -- I am not going to go on here about the size of the country and so forth -- it has been done to death. On the other hand, I think a lot of people are losing sight of the fact that this war was touted as a "pre-emptive" war. In fact, that was one of the real big bitches against it. "'Pre-emptive'!" a lot of critics shrieked. "Who does Dubya think he is -- God? Our parents?" That second criteria being even more evil than the first. But I am getting off the track here.

The idea that we were invading Iraq to prevent Saddam from developing/assembling an arsenal of weapons of mass destruction that he was specifically directed not to do by the sacred overlords of the United Nations (whom everyone pays lipservice to but no one obeys) was one of the criticisms against the war -- the idea that it was presumptuous, that we had no right, and so on. I am not going to go into the social ramifications of that attitude tonight. I am going to address the idea that the critics (I'd call them the antiwar contingent, but they are not all of that, nor are they wholly of the left) have now dropped that idea -- a sensible tactic, since the invasion is now a moot point -- and are now into the idea that we must now find WMDs inside Iraq to justify the war. I have actually even seen it postulated (see the comments) that the lack of such WMDs are grounds of impeachment of President Bush. Of course that idea is laughable on its face.

But to find WMDs -- there is the rub. Where are we to begin? Hussein had a whole country, of some size, to play with, for at least a dozen years. In Mr. Helpful's comments I said (in some less detail) that if I were an Evil Overlord like Saddam Hussein, and my most hated enemy was simultaneously massing armed forces off my borders while talking the aggressive talk to the world concerning moi (l'état, c'est moi), and had I already had assembled at least a small arsenal -- even one nuclear warhead -- of WMDs, I would not have pussyfooted around and waited and played with Hans Blix's head the way he did. Rather, I would have wasted no time in launching a warhead containing some deadly agent -- plutonium, smallpox, poisonous gas, whatever -- at some nearby place; Kuwait, most likely. (And before any of you even think of dragging out that old dead horse about Arab solidarity or any such nonsense please remember that Saddam Hussein has shown no more compassion or caring for his fellow actual Arab brother than he has for the Kurdish women and children he had gassed just so he could make sure his human spray killed people dead like the label said. He was in all ways a traditional Arab chieftain -- a thug to whom his underlings were no more than cannon fodder when the chips were down, up, or in a drawer.)

If I were an Evil Overlord like Saddam, I'd have nuked Kuwait City the moment I heard the war talk start. Saddam was delusional and evil, but he wasn't entirely stupid. He knew as well as I, a part-time auto insurance agent, that once you showed the world that you have the Bomb, you were guaranteed the kid glove treatment for life. Look at North Korea.

So no, I don't think we are going to find any WMDs. I think that we are going to find parts of WMDs. I think that we are going to find a stash of cesium some-number here, a crate of vials of anthrax there. I think we are going to find "baby milk" factories with warehouses full of mysterious metal tubes that are rather larger than even elephant baby bottles; I think that we are going to find caves with partly assembled rocket launchers that were only missing the pertinent part to be completed. And that is going to be only the tip of the iceberg. And we will find that certain countries (whose names begin with F, G, and R) were in it up to their elbows. In fact, I think that we have started to find these things out, but that they are being kept until a really devastating dossier of evidence has been developed. That seems to be the Dubya methodology.

I will say this. I think that the UN inspector shenanigans helped somewhat. I think that all that nonsense distracted Hussein enough, and scared enough potential sellers of deadly shtuff, that he was prevented from realizing his wet dream of building a nuclear weapon. (I think he fell back on poison gas as a sloppy second, but the big bangflash nukes were his one true desire.) So I think they were useful idiots in this endeavor. Or were they? Sometimes I wonder if UN incompetence and intransigence is entirely the truth of the matter. Maybe all of this -- the posturing of Chirac, the UN's maneuverings, the blatherings of Schroeder (anyone else have visions of some short blond kid at the piano every time his name is mentioned?), the treachery and the buffoonery -- was all an elaborate ruse, a ruse pulled on Saddam Hussein. Then again, I am not so sure pols are that smart -- my intellectual (now there's a word I'd like to steal back, if I wasn't so sure it wasn't as gutted as a Honda Prelude that's been in the chop shop for a month) side rises up against the notion that there wasn't a lot of dumb luck on our side this time, and we just happened to catch the Euroleaders and the Arabs in a particularly stupid part of their career.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:56 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

May 02, 2003

On the difficulty of liberal deprogramming

Some people have taken the president to task for his plane-flying stunt. From the tenor of the remarks I sense some vestiges of the "liberal" attitude that the military is, in a sense, something to be looked askance at. I did not say that these guys are anti-military, merely that the anti-military attitude that has poisoned the country since the sixties has colored their perception of this event. Here is a quote that may change their minds, or at least remind them of something that they may have forgotten or discounted in their worries that the president's actions were too "third world" (to whom I wonder?).

As for myself, I ignored the whole thing until it was safely over, because I am a big worrywart and I was afraid something would go wrong and there would be a disaster and I could not stand the thought of the media orgy of hysteria that would ensue. It was bad enough when that Kennedy sprog crashed his plane in the ocean. And when Reagan got shot (and not even killed)? Don't remind me.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:24 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

April 28, 2003

Chocolate-covered pissants

Bleeding Brain has a solution to the Belgians and their support (or coercion) of some Iraqis' little "putting General Franks on trial for warcrimes" game:

The carpet bombing of Brussels followed by the carpet re-bombing of Brussels and finally, a targeted bombing of Brussels to knock down any stubborn spires that remain standing.

Sounds good to me. I've already been there, and my dad went about three years later. When I was there, everything was the fuck closed because of some Saint Wipe-Arse day (it was Tuesday). When my dad went, again everything was closed because of some Saint Wipe-Arse day. And then they lost his luggage on the train from Brussels or Antwerp or wherever the hell it was, so he had to arrive in Copenhagen (or wherever, some other Euro-ville) stinky and wrinkled. Blow 'em off the map if they squeak.

(Via Acidman. There, I'm reading!)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:42 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Baghdad museum looting: drawing the map

I'm late getting to this (thank Steve H. for pointing the way for me): Tobacco Road Fogey has an entry about the looting, and why, due to the other strategically important venues surrounding it, the museum wasn't exactly top priority.

No, I will not stop harping on this.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 27, 2003


Uday Hussein liked to play around with a real iron maiden. (Side note: hmm... I wonder if this revelation was why one of the area rock stations was playing "Number of the Beast" last night.)

Via Tim Blair.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 26, 2003

Why the Baghdad Museum looting wasn't stopped

This is the most detailed answer I've come across so far:

The Americans have a ready answer. “We were fighting the whole time,” Captain Jason Conroy said, wiping his brow as he guarded the museum gate. “For four days we were taking machinegun-fire and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) from these buildings around here. They had a bunker around the back of the museum with a cache of RPGs. Guys were running out of that alley, firing Kalashnikovs at us.

When we shot them, they threw out hooks, dragged the bodies and guns back and came at us again.”

After four days of intense street battles with Saddam’s Fedayin and Special Republican Guards, Captain Conroy said, his company of Abrams tanks and armoured vehicles was ordered north on April 15 to destroy an anti-aircraft gun.

“When we got back the next day, everything was already on fire here and the press were here asking us: ‘How come you weren’t in the museum three days ago?’ I said: ‘If you guys had been here three days ago, you would know why.’”

This won't be enough for people, though, who think that the US military is possessed of supernatural powers that they refuse to use simply out of sheer meanness.

(Via The Ghost of a Flea.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:20 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

On poverty of vision

I like this post on Random Jottings, especially this passage referring to the sniping and the backbiting and so forth engaged in by the "left" or whatever the anti-change, pro-status-quo contingent is to be called these days:

I've been totally disgusted by the way lefties have pounced on any mistake or hesitation by our forces, without even a pretense of making "constructive criticism," or a pretense of feeling joy and pride for the liberation of Iraq. But really the situation is like that optical illusion where you squint and the goblet turns into two faces. I should be feeling sorry for those poor pathetic goops. Their poverty is so patent. They are like hungry dogs under a banquet table, snapping at any crumbs that fall. They have no plans, no visions, no dreams, and not the least inclination to do anything positive or creative. All they can do is watch the magician perform, and hope that he drops the ball, or fails to find a rabbit in his hat.


Update: Example No. 1. Example No. 2.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:58 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

April 25, 2003

Shout out to Oz

Happy ANZAC Day to the people of Australia and New Zealand.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:25 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 17, 2003

Above and beyond

This will break many hearts: U.S. troops cringe as they crush classic cars in Iraq:

Dozens of classic cars owned by Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and other Baath Party leaders were among the choicest selections for looters in Baghdad. But U.S. concerns that the cars could be used in suicide bombings or roadblocks has resulted in orders to have them destroyed.


The decision to destroy the cars was a painful one for many soldiers.

"I love cars. It was hard to see a Bel Air destroyed," said Pfc. Raul Carbajal, a 20-year-old from Chicago.

I am waiting for the first article or comment from someone comparing this destruction and the emotional response of the soldiers to it to the American (but not that of British or Australian or any other coalition members) "callousness" towards the Iraqi's destruction of their own museums and libraries. Feel free to post a link if you come upon one.

(Via Colby Cosh.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:36 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

April 16, 2003

Down in a hole

Rachel Lucas links to a story that she says people against this war should read. Yes, they should read it. I wonder what excuses they will come up with to make the Bad Reality Stuff go away then. Well. I'm sure they'll think of something. But I can't.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:23 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


We have finally got our hands on notorious Palestinian terrorist Abu Abbas. Guess where we found him? Oh, but there are no ties between terrorist groups and Iraq...

I like Tim Blair's suggestion of what to do with him. But I would add sharks.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:13 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 15, 2003

More on the Baghdad Museum looting

Michele is tying all her posts on this together. She also links to this post (for April 14th, 11:58pm -- you know, Blogspot). And I have found some pictures of the missing treasures. They are certainly very pretty and obviously important pieces of work, and if they were left in glass cases or even in vaults in the museum where people could get at them then I am the Queen of Thailand. Of course, I could be wrong, but I don't think so. As we have already seen, there are people who would put precious antiquities (especially pretty ones made of gold) before anything else, and I don't think they are all on this side of the globe.

Update: Instapundit has a link to this excerpt from Kanan Makiya's war diary. He's in Kuwait, talking by satellite phone to some friends in Baghdad:

One friend told me that the looting of the National Museum--something that cut deeply into me--was the work of newly deposed Baathist officials, who had been selling off our patrimony as they saw their days were numbered. As the regime fell, these (ex-)Baathists went back for one last swindle, and took with them treasures that dated back 9,000 years, to the Sumerians and the Babylonians. One final crime perpetrated by Saddam's thugs.


Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:57 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Baghdad Museum Looting, cont.

For a more level-headed discussion on the looting of the museum in Baghdad, go here. Dr. Weevil links to this very useful site, which has some more details:

halls with still-intact display cases (objects removed for safekeeping before the war started); the big orthostats and lamassus still there with their protective sandbags; some objects were taken to a safe haven under the supervision of US troops shortly after their arrival in Baghdad on Wednesday.

It looks as if the hand-wringers and civilization-mourners were a little premature. But I am sure that it is still too soon to know what really went on. And I am sure that there will be no letup in the condemnation of Bush and the coalition forces for not making the place a top priority.

That being said, I'll say another thing. The discussion elsewhere seems to have bogged down in a round-robin game of What's More Important, live people or dead artifacts? I have played the game as well, but it's a diversion from the crux of the topic, which is: has anyone noticed the curious fact that no one seems to have entertained the notion that American troops (and, by proxy, the other members of the coalition forces) would even think of looting the place themselves? Throughout history, conquering nations have looted the places they conquered. But that is not what is happening here. Instead of the coalition forces being the looters, the country's own citizenry is doing the looting. But I haven't heard that used as a point of praise for our forces, or even for modern Western civilization in general. It's as if it was not only expected of us to act that way, but as if it wasn't even worth mentioning, like breathing. That's nice, and says scads about us as human beings -- but it also hints that we are taking ourselves too much for granted and not giving ourselves credit. Too much self-effacement can tip over into a kind of proud refusal to admit to the possibility that we can be weak. That can't be a good thing.

Update: looks as if I was wrong -- this insane article, entitled Was Saddam Right? Are Americans the New Mongols of the Mideast?, makes this claim:

[...]like the Mongols, U.S. troops stood by while Iraqi mobs looted and destroyed artifacts at the National Museum of Iraq in Baghdad. They also reportedly joined looters who pillaged other lucrative targets like office buildings, stores, and private homes.

But it's from, whose writers are all apparently in the last stages of crack withdrawal paranoia, so I'd say take it with a grain of salt.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:50 AM | Comments (14) | TrackBack

April 14, 2003

While all the women came and went

Barefoot servants too* -- in Saddam's love shack. Dig this description of the mustachioed ex-tyrant's crimes against interior decoration:

The doors of the town house opened to reveal a playboy's fantasy straight from the 1960s: mirrored bedroom, lamps shaped like women, airbrushed paintings of a topless blonde woman and a mustached hero battling a crocodile.

And a blue shag rug. If nothing else, the world must agree that the coalition forces have done us all a favor in removing another crappy, anachronistic bachelor's pad user from the face of the earth. Allow me to use another quote from Austin Powers: "Freedom, baby, yeah!"

*Lyrics by Bob Dylan. Article via Ipse Dixit.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:28 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

April 10, 2003

Smokin' in the Boys' Room

Ken Layne has a funny. No no -- you must see this. Go there now!

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:43 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 09, 2003

They hate us, love Saddam update

Oh, they hate us all right:

(Photo source.) Via Instapundit. More hate can be seen in Donald Sensing's teevee screen captures. Don't forget to snag the video of Saddam's statue being pulled down! I'm sure the peace creeps will think of some way to spin this into a disaster, though.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:05 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Compare and contrast

Baghdad before the coalition invasion:


Baghdad after the coalition invasion (click for larger):

(Via Balloon Juice. Larger version of photo found here.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:13 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

April 08, 2003

The Long and Short of It

Okay, that does it. I am sick and tired of reading -- everywhere -- BS from anti-war people along the lines of "Americans won't accept a war on terrorism if it looks like it will be long and casualty-heavy, because they were promised a short, easy war with no more dead Americans, and Feeble Fickle Fack Vietnam! Vietnam!" Here, puppies, is the original presidential speech right after the World Trade Center was attacked and destroyed, along with the lives of thousands of Americans and foreigners living and working here. And here is the money quote, which I will make LARGE so you all can see it:

"Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes, visible on TV, and covert operations, secret even in success. We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place, until there is no refuge or no rest. And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. (Applause.) From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime."

Clear enough? I'm only sorry that I can't make a looping file of that part of the recorded speech to play over and over when people come to my site, because the ram file no longer seems to be archived here.

(Inspired by this post on Dean Esmay's blog.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:08 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

April 07, 2003

Music to War By

After I read this story, I thought of this:

"And then all the host of Rohan burst into song, and they sang as they slew, for the joy of battle was on them, and the sound of their singing that was fair and terrible came even to the City." -- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King.

(Via Scott Chaffin.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 04, 2003

By the way

I have been reading here and there that polls in other countries -- like the UK, Canada, and so forth -- are starting to show an upsurge in support of the US military actions in Iraq. I can't remember where I read them. (Feel free to leave links in comments. Remember to use correct html.)

(By the way, I am listening to a CD I picked up at Walmart, one of those cheap-o collections of old songs. It's swing, and then the next one coming up (I have a 3 cd changer) will be Big Band hits, and then a cd collection of the Ken Burns Jazz special. I just felt that the time was right for it. Later I may crank up the dvd player and put in Fellowship of the Ring. Yeah.)

Anyway, I had read on someone's blog that they had been reading polls that show that support for the US-led war in Iraq was increasing in places like Canada and the UK, and I forget where else. Probably not France, though I sense the attack by thugs on the British war hero cemetery in that country are starting to awaken some of the French from their cynical, postmodern coma. But when I read these accounts of increased support from previously not-all-behind us places, a thought occurred to me:

Everybody loves a winner.

This is not a cynical observation, but a statement of fact about human nature. We need to think seriously about this. Americans have been culturally anxious about the friendliness of the citizens of other countries towards us for quite some time, there is no getting around that fact. While the stereotypical American is supposed to be a xenophobic buffoon, the cultural elite that controls American media (and therefore American culture, at least the face Hollywood puts on it and presents to the world) is as slavishly adulating of other cultures, especially that of Old Europe, as medieval peasants in the presence of the king.

The problem is, this is the stance of a loser. Despite evidence of the enervation and even decadence inherent in much Old World culture, which is part of what our ancestors fled here to get away from (and people are still fleeing), there is the sense that the Old Cultures are Our Betters. It does not seem to have entered the heads of the easily-impressed American intelligentsia that "old cultures" can grow as senile as old persons.

But people aren't fools, deep down. They know a loser when they see one, and despite the so-called love of the underdog and worship of the victim that modern Western culture is supposed to contain, it's the underdog who triumphs against the odds that they care about, not the victim who sits there and whines. The antics of the real sad-sack victimists in society aside, most ordinary people want to enjoy good news and victory, even if only vicariously.

That is what is behind a great deal of contempt for American culture that we got and are still getting from the "Old World," and that includes the Middle East. Things are even more visceral and simpler in that part of the world, despite all the surface complexity. Remember the "Arab street"? Remember how we were all supposed to fear, over here, an uprising from the Muslim masses if we finally quit slipsliding around and confronted them? Remember how quiet the "Arab street" was after we pretty much took over "fearsome Afghanistan" in a month, and watch as the "Arab street" will fail to do more than burn a few polyester stars-'n'-stripes knockoffs in the town square on their lunch hour after we mop up in Iraq. I am not saying this to show some kind of arrogant contempt for Arab culture (not that I think that there is anything wrong with arrogant contempt), but to show that these people will respect us when we stop dicking around with the diplomacy and the irony and the self-deprecation that is so attuned just to our own culture and show that we are serious. When we say "stop that" we have to be able to show that we mean it. The world is a three-year-old child testing it's parents' boundaries; you can't give it an inch or you'll get to endure tantrums the rest of your life. It's only common sense.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:13 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

April 03, 2003

Sugar 'n' Spice

I haven't talked about the rescued POW Pfc. Jessica Lynch because everyone else has, and I had nothing more to contribute than "Yay!" But I do now -- not about the rather ghoulish "Was she tortured, even... you know--?" about Private Lynch. I'll just address the attitude towards her apparent cuteness, that seems to have at least one blogger rather dismissive of other bloggers' ire at the treatment of her by media figures (which apparently extend to calling her by her first name, not her rank, calling attention to her looks, etc. -- I haven't seen it, but it sounds like an accurate assessment of how our Cute-ified media treats every subject under the sun -- if torture were part of our culture we'd have cutesy segments about it on the Today show, with Katie (see the diminutive) Couric saying pert things about the latest designs in nail-rippers and testicle pinchers). I'm not going to get into the argument about women in combat, pro and con, because my attitude is basically spelled out in this bit of dialogue from The Return of the King, where Eowyn says:

"All your words are but to say: you are a woman, and your part is in the house. But when the men have died in battle and honour, you have leave to be burned in the house, for the men will need it no more."

But enough of that. Anyway, Private First Class Lynch is handicapped, apparently, by her cute girlieness. Well, this doesn't sound like the actions of a cute, delicate little girlie:

Pfc. Jessica Lynch, rescued Tuesday from an Iraqi hospital, fought fiercely and shot several enemy soldiers after Iraqi forces ambushed the Army's 507th Ordnance Maintenance Company, firing her weapon until she ran out of ammunition, U.S. officials said yesterday.

Lynch, a 19-year-old supply clerk, continued firing at the Iraqis even after she sustained multiple gunshot wounds and watched several other soldiers in her unit die around her in fighting March 23, one official said. The ambush took place after a 507th convoy, supporting the advancing 3rd Infantry Division, took a wrong turn near the southern city of Nasiriyah.

I guess someone forgot to tell her that cute girlies don't fight to kill. But people are free to go on thinking that.

(Personal note: I was considered terribly cute as a child. People were sure that I was friendly, sociable, a "people" person, just because I was a curly-headed, big-blue-eyed moppet. They couldn't have been further from the truth, and people were constantly backing away from me -- or rather, what I allowed them to see over the top of whatever book I was reading -- in confusion. There's nothing worse than being a cute misanthrope.)

(Via Transterrestrial Musings.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:57 AM | Comments (17) | TrackBack

On Going Too Far

Kim's back, and he's bad as ever. (I mean that in a good way.) Especially here -- and I agree with him too.

Which brings me to torture. I promised a post earlier on the subject, didn't I? This post on Letter from Gotham got me thinking. No, I can't say as I have many qualms at the thought of torture used on the sort of thugs we are fighting. For one thing, we have been shown by the actions of these self-proclaimed Warriors of Allah, or Champions of the Arabs, or whatever they think of themselves, that their concept of honor is restricted to themselves alone; it is not extended to us, the worthless infidels that we are. All of what Kim du Toit calls the Marquis of Queensberry-type rules that we are attempting to adhere to (the "Geneva Conventions" and so on) mean absolutely nothing to this enemy that thinks it's a fine battle tactic to hide behind women and children.

The argument against torture and so on -- against "going too far" -- hinges on what the people proposing it claim to be our own self-respect. I think that's a lot of hooey. I know I could certainly not respect myself if I treated some terrorist scum in my power civilly in order to find out some urgent info, which could not be gotten out of him with any sweet persuasion or respectful coaxing, only to learn later -- after whatever plan he refused to divulge had come to pass, causing the deaths of others -- that he was laughing all the time at my Western weakness. That notion that we mustn't "give in" to our "dark side" and become "just like them" is nothing more than the desire to keep our beautiful souls pristine in order to impress our peers -- the same fault we accuse the peacenuggets of cultivating.

But let us consider such a thing as torture. Like anything, it must be done right. In other words, even going outside the boundaries has rules. For one thing, it must not become yet another dreary bureaucratic industry, with rape rooms in the Baathist manner, and professional torturers who need to get a license just like insurance salesmen, and courses (that you can take at home in your spare time!), and companies dedicated to the manufacture of "multi-use" electrodes and cattle prods ("Acme Electrical Appliance, Inc., Serving Three Needs: Agricultural, Sexual, and Political Since 2005!"), and so on.

Rather, It's all a matter of passion -- and style. I am all for the interrogator suddenly going apeshit on a terrorist. It should be timed right, of course. It should take the terrorist completely by surprise. He should be made to believe that his whole world is going mad. One more thing; men should not torture women. There's a sex-bias, buried-chivalry/twisted misogyny dichotomy that will mess things up. If it's a female terrorist, let another woman -- or women, we do the ganging up thing real well -- at her.

And needless to say there will be none of this rape stuff. Rape is so crass, not to mention it takes a certain amount of planning that destroys the necessary spontaneity. Remember: style. A really accomplished torturer shouldn't even have to break a kneecap -- shouldn't have to even lay a finger on the torturee.

(If this doesn't scare away the arbiters of the Republic of Nice from my website I don't know what will.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:25 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

They get them from home

Journalist shocked by common human decency. Details on site.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:39 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Darwin's delight

According to the Iraqi "Information Manager" (aka, "Professional Liar"), we've bombed our own people over there! But wait:

"Yesterday, an American warplane attacked two buses on the highway between Baghdad and Ahman," Mohammed Saeed al Sahaf told reporters.

"Those people on those two buses are human shields coming to participate in defending civilian installations like water sanitation stations, electricity generation stations, and so on."

The rest of his scolding was drowned out by the sound of loud cheering by our side.

Coming up soon: I post on my approval of torture!

(Via Curmudgeonly & Skeptical. One thing I want to know is -- where does he get all the wacky nun pictures?)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:42 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 31, 2003

I listen to NPR

I decided to listen to the local college radio station while preparing my steaks. WUCF is a jazz station, and they play NPR news every half hour or so. Well. News from Iraq was offered: first something about some women and children who had been killed in the fighting in wherever they are fighting now (it starts with "N"). I had a cynical thought: I knew that this must have made some journo's day, because they live for opportunities to be able to use the phrase "women 'n' children" in the same story as "were killed" appears. Chiding myself for such un-nice notions (not), I continued to listen. I then was informed that Amnesty International has called the US the "Jekyll and Hyde" of human rights. Well, at least we have a Dr. Jekyll component to our national personality -- so many other countries (including the one we are currently involved in festivities with) seem to be all Hyde. AI seems to have given up on those countries as beyond the pale, by the way. (See more on this subject by Steven Den Beste.)

Then they finished with the Iraq news and went on to another juicy, US-involved-somehow, country's doings. Apparently journalists are fleeing an "embattled" area of Colombia because leftist insurgents and their "right-wing" opponents both issued death threats against those journalists. A sensible option: now both sides can fight it out in (relative) peace and quiet without journalistic interference. I wonder if this is the start of a trend.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:41 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

1, 2, 3, 4, Iraqis really want this war

They're just terrified to say so. They are afraid that the US will up and leave, and they'll be stuck in Iraq having to explain themselves to Saddam's forces. And no one will care about the new crop of Iraqis who are shot, gassed, shredded, and otherwise killed by the Fedayeen, because the only real dead Iraqi are ones Americans kill.

They don't trust us, and I don't blame them.

How can I, when we have Western reporters on worldwide cable tv parrotting the Iraqi government line? If I think that makes me feel like shit, imagine how the Iraqis must feel.

How can people still be against this war and be all "oh, the poor suffering Iraqis," when the actual poor, suffering Iraqis want it? Never mind, don't answer that -- I think Jim Treacher got it right:


(Via cut on the bias.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:04 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

March 30, 2003

A blast of gas from the past

Peter Arnett is at it again. Anyone who remembers the coverage of the first Gulf War twelve years ago will feel a clammy sort of nostalgia at Arnett's current gangster-groupie act in Baghdad. Funny, he just happened to be in that city on assignment from National Geographic. How convenient. Now, either he is still miffed at the drawers he ruined during the bombardment of the city at the start of the war, or he is just a natural toadie. You make the call.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The fog of war news

Some of you have probably been wondering what happened to the Bloodthirsty Spleenstress. I haven't been talking about the war a lot on this blog since the conflict has begun. There are a lot of reasons why I haven't been doing so, some of them pretty obvious ones. For one thing, I am not following the coverage twenty-four seven. I'm not watching much tv at all. I don't have cable tv, so I really can't weigh in on the Fox-good/CNN-bad/Al Jazeerah-totally-evil brouhaha. For another thing, what coverage I do get, from the regular networks, just infuriates me. I didn't think anything could be more annoying than sports announcers; I was wrong. Example: a couple of days ago I turned on ABC (I think) and watched footage of an American soldier handing out some food or something to some Iraqi kids, and the war-announcer journalist guy was saying something along the lines of "the sight of Marines stopping their convoy just to give out food and water to the Iraqis might look staged--" I turned it off. I don't have to listen to that crap. I'm not as young as I used to be, and I weigh too much, and I have the feeling that my blood pressure is not as mellow as it was a few years ago.

Also, I have no military education, or knowledge of things War, or any of that. It looks like things are going just fine for our side (yes! we have a side! deal with it), despite the comical quagmire yearnings of the press. I am not particularly worried along those lines. I think Saddam is either dead or not feeling very well, and I look forward to the "Generalissimo Franco is still dead" vibe to last quite some time. Let's see -- what else can I say about it... Oh yeah -- I am certainly not going to get into arguments of whether or not we should have gone there. For one thing -- we are there. Note to the peacenuggets whose new cry is "stop this right now and come back home at once!": it's too late for that. We can't just stop in the middle of things and go "Oops! Sorry -- we've changed our minds." Your "Bring the troops home now!" slogans just look silly. (As if that were anything new.) And as to whether or not this war will turn out to have been a Good Idea After All -- well, I think it will, but who knows? We'll see. Do your own moaning about the unknown on your own time.

So if you come here looking for war discourse you won't find very much of it. You are, of course, going to the Command Post for your war updates, aren't you? And if you want expert opinions, check the blogs by clicking on "all the blogs" on the left. You'll find something. Anyway, here's a blast from the past (Scott reminded me that we haven't seen this guy around here lately):
chop chop!

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:06 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

The Darwin Squad

Photodude discusses the recent suicide bomb attacks in Iraq. The speculation is that these are not conventional Iraqi forces, but terrorists from other Arab countries who are converging on Iraq to "help" their good buddy Saddam (or his bits and pieces) fight the Great Satan. Well good, I say -- let them converge. It will be easier for us to finish them all off if they gather in one place. (Note: all links copied from Photodude's post.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:30 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

March 25, 2003

Badly-Drawn Boys

This photo on, supposedly of a downed Apache helicopter, is so obviously and ineptly Photoshopped. Looks like the Russkies have even lost their touch at convincing disinformation. (Yes, the Russians are being such pills I'm gonna start using old Cold War slang, just because.)

(Via The Command Post.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:42 PM | Comments (20) | TrackBack

I turn on the tv

CBS. Guess what: urban warfare is eminent! And... there will be casualties! (So, um, what were those other things? Freak accidents?) Oh, and sandstorms are bad. No shizzitsky, Clouseau.

NBC: they're talking to relatives of soldiers. There was no on-camera blubbering. One man is asked about the POWs and how it makes him feel and stuff. (One of the POWs has family here.) He says something about how it made one even angrier and more determined to fight. Oops, Iraqi thugs and/or Al Qaeda guys or whoever you are, I guess you didn't count on that.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 24, 2003

Two views

Outside, and inside.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:36 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

March 23, 2003

Meanwhile back at the war

Hey, Turks.

Back the fuck up.

Thank you.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:48 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

I'd like to make this perfectly clear

In case any of you were wondering, I'm with Mr. Kim du Toit:

Isolationist? Not me. I believe we should act as the world's Raid, exterminating cockroaches like Saddam Hussein wherever they appear.

You don't like it? Tough shit. The "world community" can talk to the hand. The "world community" is content to let people in Thug World countries suffer so creamy-voiced academics can make speeches and write papers. All the "world community" cares about is looking good. Screw the "world community."

And in case you still aren't sure, this illustrates what I care about what the "world community" thinks:


So please take your whinges about the "world community" and how we have to treat thug nations the same as civilized, law-abiding nations to someone else's blog. You'll find plenty here.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:40 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

American POWs executed in Iraq?

If this story is true, so much for the vaunted powers of the Geneva Conventions. I have gotten into some arguments recently with some antiwar persons who seem to think that the mere invocation of the name of those documents has the power to turn swords into plowshares and ruthless dictators into cuddly lambs. This would seem to be an indication that those powers don't work outside the confines of the nations that put those documents together.

(Via American Empire, who has links to more stories.)

Update: Kos weighs in. Apparently our "conduct" in Afghanistan, where we freed that nation from the grip of the Taliban, so that millions of Afghan refugees were able to return home and the people there have the possibility of being able to build a normal life, is not going to get us any "sympathy." Sure, no sympathy from the thugs and brigands and murderers we are fighting, whose side Kos has apparently taken. (And note the Magic Phrase is uttered in the very first paragraph.) Kos can go to hell.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:20 PM | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Oh please oh please

Hussein badly injured, Uday dead. That's what this Daily Telegraph article is almost practically sure of. It coudn't happen to a nicer pair of guys. Now what about Qusay? Get that fugly creep too. (I saw footage of the brood on teevee last night. Those two were the fugliest pair of beings I have laid eyes on. At the very least, the Iraqis have the right to better-looking leaders.)

(Via Viking Pundit.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:41 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Bummer, man

Ghost of a Flea links to this article about one "human shield's" awakening to the horror of what he was doing:

Perhaps the most crushing thing we learned was that most ordinary Iraqis thought Saddam Hussein had paid us to come to protest in Iraq. Although we explained that this was categorically not the case, I don't think he believed us. Later he asked me: "Really, how much did Saddam pay you to come?"

This was after an account of how his Iraqi cab driver painstakingly explained to him just how much they wanted to get rid of Saddam, so much so that they were willing for us to wage war on them to do it.

Ghost also has a lot of links to various articles recounting the antics of that wacky Hussein guy and his spawn. Sample: "...rusty butcher hooks--" No, I really shouldn't. You antiwar holdouts might not want to read them -- you'll get really bummed out. Better just to forget about it, right?

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:35 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Kill the messenger

"Láthspell I name you, Ill-news; and ill news is an ill guest they say." No one likes to hear bad news, least of all those who have staked out a position on the moral high ground. The latest intended victim of one of these Lords of Nuance is Dixie Flatline, who made the unpopular speculation that the American serviceman involved in the recent assassination on his own fellow soldiers might just be a Muslim. And even though Mr. Flatline's speculation looks likely to be proved right, that does not seem to matter to the Gríma Wormtongues of the net. All that matters is that they continue to control the high ground.

Update: for a more measured response, which counsels caution instead of immediately coming on with both "Silence, you racists!" barrels blasting, check out Andrew Olmsted.

2nd Update: and here's another.

3rd Update: Dr. Frank weighs in on the possible religious-ideological implications of the solder's actions. Dr. Frank is by no means a knee-jerk, round-'em-all-up Muslim hater.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:14 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

March 22, 2003


I can only hope that the actions of these relatives of one of the Marines killed in the chopper crash in Iraq are due to their being in shock, and not due to some deep rot in American society that causes people to think nothing of this sort of dishonor. Read this entry on Sgt. Stryker's Daily Briefing and you'll see what I mean.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:01 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Anti-anti-war protesters has all your anti-peacenugget needs. (Via The Command Post. Of course, Blogspot is too freaked out for its permalinks to work.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:03 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Pre-Battle Speech

Finally, someone who knows how to orate. Skip the lead-up blather from the article writer and go down to the third paragraph where the quoted bit starts.

(Via David C. Hill.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:25 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Are you ready, boots?

Start walkin.' (Note: you'll need Windows Media Player to view the video.)

Via a small victory.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:02 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Politics of Dancing

A study in contrasts (click for larger):

(From The Politburo, via Tim Blair.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:31 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

March 21, 2003

Captured moment

For some reason the New York Times took down this photo, but this is the internet, where you can run but you can't hide. (If you aren't sure, it's an Iraqi guy hugging an American soldier.)

(Via Michael Totten, who has many more nice photos.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:28 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

The girls, they love to see you shoot

[Warning to stuffed shirts, prigs, and professional mourners: yes, this is a frivolous post on the war. I am not going to act like the whole enterprise is one big fun fest, but I refuse to wear a hair shirt either. If that gets all up your crack, you are invited to take your eyes elsewhere.]

Well, it looks as if the British forces are going to keep their title of Best Looking Troops, which my friends and I bestowed upon them during the last Gulf War twelve years ago.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:55 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

The big kaboom

Well. That's a lot of explosions. Peter Arnett sounds... giddy. Saddam Hussein's "presidential palace," about a mile away from Arnett's hotel, is being quickly reduced to a pile of dust.

I wish Tom Brokaw would shut up.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:04 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Class in session

For those who still think that this Iraq thing sprung up out of nowhere, here's the Iraqi Timeline from 1991-2003 by Venomous Kate. (Via Michele.) And for those who are still under the impression that there is zip, zilch, nada evidence to connect Saddam Hussein and terrorist groups like Al Qaeda, here is a helpful compendium of links and sources, compiled by Alex Knapp -- Part One, and Part Two.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A hopeful sign

This little town in Iraq doesn't seem too unhappy with the US-led invasion:

A few men and boys ventured out, putting makeshift white flags on their pickup trucks or waving white T-shirts out truck windows.

"Americans very good," Ali Khemy said. "Iraq wants to be free."

Some chanted, "Ameriki! Ameriki!"

(Via Silent Running -- see the entries for March 22 -- yes, it's already tomorrow in Australia/New Zealand.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:53 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Iraqis in America

Here's a transcript of some reactions of Iraqis in America to the war in Iraq. I don't think they'll be donning puppet heads or throwing up on the sidewalk for Saddam any time soon:

Many of these Iraqi-Americans fled after persecution from the regime of Saddam Hussein, and have worked to dismantle that regime ever since. Here, the president's ultimatum brought cheers. (Applause) Activist Emad Dhia was especially pleased.

Via Instapundit. Glenn wonders where stories like this were before the war started. So do I. Sure, you'd get the occasional interview snippet with an Iraqi exile in favor of regime change or talking about the misery of life in Iraq, but mostly the stories were from a "these poor victims" angle. There was scarcely a hint anywhere that Iraqis could be considered independent actors in their own right. Better to keep them penned in the Helpless Brown Victim corral.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:05 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Sign on the dotted line

Okay, I don't want to hear about the damn "capitulation form" anymore. I'm not in the Iraqi Republican Army, I don't have to sign it. And I don't think they get CBS news on Iraqi satellite teevee.

I just had to shut the box off. An anchorfemale asked some guy (didn't get his name, he was some suit in the teevee studio) about how the helicopter crash that has so far resulted in the first (and only) fatalities in the war "made the troops feel." He started to reply something about "it brings the reality of the war home--" I pressed the power button on the remote before I could hear him finish it with "to the soldiers." Stupid suited-and-tied asshead, do you think that any of those soldiers don't know they can get killed?

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:18 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


Oh jeez, the reporter on NBC has his gasmask on and there are sirens going on in the background. Ook.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:23 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

That intersection in Baghdad

"The Corner of Shock and Awe" works for me.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:19 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

March 20, 2003

Is this it?

The Iraqi Army has "for the most part, given up"?

"Coalition forces all over Iraq"?

From Fox teevee news. And then they started griping about -- what else -- the lack of "shock 'n' awe." Quite frankly I think some overeager journalist misheard somebody talking about some event in Saginaw, Michigan, and once the VIPs heard the rumors they decided to let it ride.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:49 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Stone Cold Ari

I was half-listening to a White House press briefing on teevee. To a question about Russia's President Putin's opposition to the war, Press Secretary Ari Fleischer basically said, "S.S., D.D." ROTFL.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:39 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Still blogging. The Vogon Poetry Reading is confirmed. Okay, he didn't say "Vogon," but I can read between the lines.

Update: a critique of the Vogon Poetry Reading. (See March 20th.) Hey, that's brave -- don't you know that can get you shoved out the airlock?

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Oh, okay then

China is "calling for a halt" to the war, according to the NBC broadcast I'm watching. Translation: "Shit! That drippy little round-eye meant it!" I'm sure there are many uneasy bowels in the Middle Kingdom tonight. They also have that sparky little feller over in North Korea to worry about.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:05 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


ABC News just played a snippet of some Iraqi incidental teevee filler. I love the way the anchordude said, of the rather doleful martial chanting accompanying the image, "That appears to be music playing in the background..." So those years at journalism school weren't wasted!

Ooh, and they've got old man Saddam on tv. "Dear Homeland, yadda yadda, the family of Iraq, yadda yadda, Great Satan blah Glorious Victory blah." His version of a morale booster, I guess. I think he's been forgetting to apply his moustache dye lately.

More: "Light the torture in the night"? Oh -- that was the translator's accent. He was saying torches. Yeah.

I do declare Saddam is reading his own poetry. I knew it -- he's a Vogon!

If I were in Baghdad I'd be praying for a missile right now. He's talking about love and peace. He sounds like a hippy. A Vogon hippy.

Ooh -- he threw in something about "Long live Palestine." Just because.

PS: You know what sounds really weird? Cheery commercials for cars and clothes right after a speech by a nutso dictator we are trying to kill.

New: this caption appeared over the NBC broadcast a few minutes ago: "Saddam Hussein condemns shameful crimes against humanity & Iraq." You don't say.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:36 AM | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Prima donna blues

According to the Suman Palit, the start of the war took all the news biggies by surprise, and they aren't happy about it. What did they expect, an engraved invitation? Never mind, don't answer that.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:30 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Keep this site open in your browser and refresh every now and then. It would be nice if certain of Blogspot's servers were kept up for the next few days.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:26 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 19, 2003

Annoying War News Clichés, v. 2.0

Starting my list now:

  1. Shock and awe. Reaction so far: "Where is the big kaboom? There was supposed to be a big kaboom!"

  2. double digits -- as in, of missiles, explosions, raids, times "double digits" was said.

  3. Weapons of mass destruction. Well, yeah.

  4. Pictures of some flood-lighted monument-type building against a dark night sky, while a newsperson over a crackly speaker says "what is happening or appears to be happening is _____" (Fill in the blank.)

  5. What the British reporter in Baghdad is seeing outside of his hotel window. "A car just went down the street. There are some vehicles parked outside..." Translation: "I am so very bored right now when are the Yanks going to start blowing stuff up so I can start my spiel?"

  6. Embedded. This is going to be an unfortunate one. It was already a cliché when it referred to content in computer documents. Now it refers to reporters assigned to various military units. Whatever happened to "assigned"?

  7. "War on Iraq." I wish they would just call it what it is: "War on Saddam Hussein and His Unpleasant Mafia-like Brood." After all, Iraq itself hasn't really done anything to us.

  8. And this variant of the above: "Target: Iraq." Come on, that's like saying your target is the wall when the object you are trying to get the dart to connect with is the round colored disk that's hanging from it. It really should be "Target: Saddam Hussein and His Unpleasant Mafia-like Brood." But no, they have to be circumspect, because coming right out and saying that we are targeting a certain group of persons is somehow worse than pretending we actually have a quarrel with the entire country and population of Iraq, which does not happen to be the case.

  9. 1:18am, NBC: "All is quiet on the western front right now--" Oh shut up.

  10. "It has begun." Blogs, lots of them. Stop it, you guys, or I'll make you all read Atlas Shrugged, including all the speeches.

  11. "Concern." "Dissent." Stick a fork in these two words; they're done.

  12. "Saddam Hussein is a Bad Man." I've not only seen this phrase in some news articles, I've seen this used in a lot of blogs. A lot of blogs. Here's what first comes to my mind when I hear the phrase So-and-so is a Bad Man: "...You say Shaft is a bad man? Shut your mouth!" I do not think of Saddam Hussein when I hear the phrase "So-and-so is a bad man." However, when I hear the phrase "torturing, murdering, baby-killing, countryside-destroying genocidal maniac," Saddam's face is brought to mind. You guys who want to express your ire at him may want to use something like that instead.

  13. Damn! They're coming thick and fast -- not only are they doing an entire special segment on number 1, Tom Brokaw just used "the drumbeats of war" and "shock 'n' awe" in the same sentence. And the female reporter used "innocents." And they just finished a segment on possible chemical warfare, though at least we didn't have to watch a reporter ineptly trying to put on a gas mask. Well they've had twelve years to practice. All on NBC tonight.

  14. "Potential threats to the U.S." As in "there are still no clear indications of --" It's a cliché now. Really, how much more explicit did Hussein have to be? Even he didn't think he had to draw us a map. Face it -- he's not the Unabomber, he's not going to mail a two-thousand page manifesto to the New York Times and demand that they publish it.

This list will be added to as new ones appear.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:26 PM | Comments (19) | TrackBack

Gollum's Way

That's what Canada's government has taken, according to John Robson, who gets bonus points for quoting from the book, not the movie.

(Via Sharon Ferguson. The hobbits will be back soon -- trust me.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:48 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Bottoms up

It's the Gulf War II Drinking Game!

(Via Dave Tepper, whose web design I forgot to mention is snazzy. I am not jealous.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:06 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

March 17, 2003

Crystal ball time

Post your predictions for the next week or so on Michele's blog! Here's mine:

So hard to think through the migraine... I dunno. Stuff will happen. The teevee screens will be full of Concerned Anchorpersons talking to Concerned Journalists shouting into microphones against a backdrop of dark sky with blurry lights. Rumors will fly thick and fast. Some people will get killed. I predict at least one televized interview with an anxious Kurd/Kuwaiti/Iraqi/whatever family by a Beeb reporter with a snide accent. The peaceniks will go out of their minds and have to be sedated. (Okay, that's not a prediction, that's a wish.) Several people will write solemn, portentious blogposts. Subject: Civilization As We Know It Will Never Be The Same. Several other people will write about the latest Simpson episode. At least one blogger will put up a "Who has the hottest troops" poll. (Last Gulf War it was the Brits. Have they held up in the intervening twelve years?)

Stuff will blow up. Hussein's forces will at least attempt to lob a few missiles (those ones they don't have) into Israel, just because. There will be an infinite number of how-to-put-a-gas-mask-on segments on CNN, until everyone is sick of the subject and wants nothing to do with the damn things. Dan Rather, Peter Jennings, et al, will continue to be insufferable. The Two Towers will only win an obscure Oscar for best caterers or something; Chicago will sweep the awards instead.

Update: Mike's predictions are better (and more serious) than mine.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 15, 2003

On the anticipation of gratitude

Reading Oriana Fallaci's latest article reminded me of something I keep meaning to bring up but keep putting off writing about. It is this:

Though I support the war against Saddam Hussein, I am not one of those who expects, much less will write about expecting, the cheering and dancing and singing and gratitude from the Iraqi people once they are freed of their tyrant. I am not at all optimistic about how we Americans are going to be loved and have a brand new friend in the Middle East. I am not even optimistic about their immediate institution of a Western-style democracy once the Ba'athists have been deposed.

Perhaps it is because I am an ornery person. I know that whenever friends would do something for me -- drag me to a movie, set me up on a date, and so forth -- they would say something along the lines of: "You'll love it!" That immediately set up a series of mental responses on my part that usually culminated in the resentment of the friend for thinking they could assume they were sure what I "loved" and a lessening of my ability to enjoy myself at whatever activity it was.

But enough about my psychological problems. The notion that anticipation of slavish gratitude will cause resentment instead is not an unusual one, and I think, given the history of the US's dealings with Iraq (I know it's not just us, but since we are the big power everyone sees it as "US-and-Iraq," not "all the countries of the world and Iraq"), and given the fact that I doubt this person is the only one in the land with internet access, and given the fact that Arabs on the whole seem to be an ornery set of people, I would not anticipate big parades with flower-throwing and dancing girls, and if they do occur I'd still watch my back.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:06 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

March 13, 2003

Silly War Songs

Scott Ganz on the silliness and childishness of much of the antiwar criticism these days. In brief: I agree. I'm probably repeating myself, but I don't think it can be said enough that "War is icky and makes my hair frizzy!" and "Zeeble bop fickle fack Bush Bush BUSH!"* are not good arguments against war in Iraq or anyplace else. Neither are "you guys don't remember Vietnam and all the casualties quagmire blah blah blah." Well, I remember Vietnam and all the casualties and how we just sort of got bummed out and abandoned the Vietnamese to their fate. It seems, in the end, to have turned out less horrid (at least in Vietnam) than it could have -- at least, the country is no North Korea -- but to this day I don't know why every Vietnamese person on earth just doesn't hate our guts. We dropped them like a hot rock and let the commies have them. "Sorry! It's just too hard to keep doing this! That cool blond chick in the bell bottoms won't let me date her if I keep up the war stuff, so -- gotta go!"

We dropped Iraq too, like a hot rock, though this was at the behest of the United Nations, an act which not only left Hitler Jr. in power, but in retrospect made the rest of the world think that we were the United Nations' bitch. No wonder everyone's so upset now. The high-class hooker thinks she can go into business without her pimp now, and you know nothing pisses pimps off more.

Anyway, I've got to get out of the Bytecave for a while. Laters.

(*Stolen from Juan Gato.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:50 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

March 12, 2003

Not too smart

Well, whaddaya know: Saddam Hussein, that guy who is "no threat to the US," has opened a training camp for suicide bombers. He's getting volunteers from all over the Muslim world. All together in one place. Can you say "target"? I knew you could.

(Via Liquid Courage.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:52 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Serbian Prime Minister Assassinated

Well, this is just great:

Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic -- who spearheaded the revolt that toppled former President Slobodan Milosevic in October 2000 -- was assassinated Wednesday by gunmen who ambushed him outside the government complex, police sources said.

"Gunmen"? Oyyyy.... why can't they say "assassins" or "murderers"? Sigh. And I do so love the way history seems to be caught in some kind of repeating loop in the Balkans. I don't know anything about the late prime minister, but the fact that he was one of those who helped bring down Milosevic, and was pro-Western, makes me think that there is more behind this than mere local "politics." Do you think this will get some of the European nations (cough France cough) to get their heads out of their posteriors about this terrorist problem? Yeah, me neither.

(Via On the Third Hand.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:08 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

The Home Front

Susanna Cornett and Mike Hendrix have put together a new website, The Home Front, to commemorate those businesses that are paying the full salaries of their employees who have been called up to serve in the military. There's a handy link button, which you can see over in my sidebar.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

March 11, 2003

Mother of All Bombs

Look what the army tested in my state today. (To any who are curious, no, I don't live close enough to Eglin to have heard anything. In fact, I live several hours' drive away. Florida is a bigger state than people realize. In fact, I have my suspicions that parts of this state are not actually in the same space-time continuum as the rest of the earth, making Florida technically bigger than the entire universe. That's the only way I can explain how it takes so friggin' long to drive out of here any time I want to leave by car.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:33 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

March 10, 2003

Send in the inspectors!

Funny, when I tried to do this sort of thing with my car payments, the bank wasted no time in threatening to send in the troops:

In your letter, you also indicated that you would submit my name to a collection agency to recoup losses from papers already delivered. I view this as an unreasonable escalation on your part, which can only lead to mutual hostility between us. Furthermore, it is unsupportable when viewed next to my continued compliance as I’ve noted above.

However, if you continue to feel that such drastic action is required to ensure my full compliance with the subscription contract, I’m going to have to demand that you get permission from the editors of Le Monde and Pravda before moving forward.

I'm guessing Saddam Hussein keeps his subscription to the NYT paid up. Say, do you think the UN will refinance my car?

(Note: the post you want is the one titled "To the Subscription Department of the New York Times." Blogspot is -- well, you know the drill.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 09, 2003

The Un-Empire

This sounds about right to me:

Put it all together and project ten years into the future. We see an America with a powerful naval and air force; with relatively few soldiers based outside the nation. An America looking out for its' own interests and finally rid of most of the "entangling alliances" brought about by World War II and its' aftermath.

Of course, there will be plenty of bitching about that from the very same people who are currently bitching about "Imperial America" and "hegemony." What these people want is not, as they claim, a secure and peaceful democratic republic that is an independent nation among many other independent nations, but a sweaty and neurotic semi-socialist body whose relationship with its allies and enemies is as that of a host to various parasites and inimical viruses.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:06 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

March 05, 2003

Celebrity shout-out

Oh, now that's cold. I love it. (It's the second one that's "dedicated" to Martin Sheen. Har!)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:02 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 02, 2003

A question

Does Saddam Hussein think he's going to be attacked by armies on horseback?

"...and as the trenches were made each was filled with fire, though how it was kindled or fed, by art or devilry, none could see." -- Return of the King

(It's the post for March 2; I guess there will never be any working archives on a Blogspot site.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:35 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Some good news for a change

Here's an account of a pro-U.S. rally in South Korea. Now that's a lot of people.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:52 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

February 28, 2003

Traitor's Gambit

Oops: there are things the "human shields" apparently didn't think of, such as the possibility that what they are doing really is treason. Sure, that charge has been thrown around many blogs concerning these folks, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be taken seriously. I can only suppose that to the people running off to Baghdad to "protect" the wimmin 'n' kiddies from Big Bad US Bombs the notion of "treason" was either something quaint, belonging to the days of tri-cornered hats when people were "less sophisticated," or that they are so deluded by their utopian, we-are-the-world fantasies that they actually don't know what the words "foreign country" or "enemy" mean anymore. (And they take that as a "strength," when it is actually the mark of a stupidity bordering on madness.) It would be nice if at least some of the leaders of these looney tunes had to go through a big, scary trial for treason, but I am not hopeful that this will actually come to pass. After all, Jane Fonda actually went to North Vietnam and shmoozed with the Viet Cong, and nothing happened to her.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:29 AM | Comments (22) | TrackBack

February 26, 2003

A win-win situation

Yes! Saddam Hussein vows death before exile:

Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein says he would rather die than leave his country, dismissing recent arguments by U.S. and Arab leaders that he could go into exile to avoid war.

What can I say except: "Happy to oblige!"

(Via cut on the bias: February 2003 Archives)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 05:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Iraqis for the war

Iraqis speak out: has all the links. Summary: they are not too thrilled about war, but they are even less thrilled about the idea that the US might go, "Aw, the peace protestors are right -- we can't drop bombs on the Children™!" and leave them in the lurch again.

Frankly, I can't understand the objections of the antiwar people. They were all about the US righting all its wrongs, and cleaning up its messes, and not abandoning people to fend for themselves. So, we are finally getting around to doing some of this, and suddenly it's the wrong thing to do? Because we can't do it with magic like Harry Potter? Twelve years of paperwork and Official Visits haven't made a dent in Saddam Hussein's arsenal or plan; the only thing that has ever worked are the constant patrols of American warplanes in the no-fly zone. Again: American arms do what bureaucrats can't.

And let me tell you something else: Arabs have been doing the paperwork dance for a lot longer than Europeans have. They practically invented the record-everything-in-triplicate mania that it took centuries for Europe to get around using. Please, I studied this: Bernard Lewis has several volumes out that are nothing but samples of the lists of everything -- every brick, teapot, gold coin, sheet of parchment, and what-have-you -- that were kept back in the days of the strength of the Muslim Empire. And tons more of this stuff is lying around untranslated, probably because it is mind-numbingly boring. (Historians of the 31st century are going to ignore our reams and piles of 1040 forms too.) And these UN and European bureaucrats think they can put one over on Saddam with their multi-digit resolutions and finicky procedures? Give. Me. A. Fucking. Break. It's all a game to him. All I can say is we had better be taking advantage of time by getting our forces in place, not doing the Clintonesque put-it-off-as-long-as-possible shillyshallying.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:41 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

An Immodest Proposal

As a counteraction to the recent "Naked Peace Protests" Michele is pondering a gesture of support for our troops. This gesture is not without historical precedent:

Tradition says that armies already wavering and giving way have been rallied by women who, with earnest entreaties and bosoms laid bare, have vividly represented the horrors of captivity, which the Germans fear with such extreme dread on behalf of their women, that the strongest tie by which a state can be bound is the being required to give, among the number of hostages, maidens of noble birth. They even believe that the sex has a certain sanctity and prescience, and they do not despise their counsels, or make light of their answers. In Vespasian's days we saw Veleda, long regarded by many as a divinity. In former times, too, they venerated Aurinia, and many other women, but not with servile flatteries, or with sham deification. -- Tacitus, Germania.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:33 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

February 25, 2003

The Prisoner

Hey, kiddies, here's a story about a guy who got to stay in an Iraqi prison for fourteen whole years because he sold a roll of film. These prisons are one of the many important Iraqi institutions the war tourists human shields are protecting. Great job, guys! What he went through makes Gitmo look like a Club Med resort. He has a wish for the antiwar protesters:

“I am surprised to hear of all the anti-war demonstrations in the West,” he said. “I wish that the demonstrators could spend just 24 hours in the place I have come from and see the reality of Iraq.

“Fourteen lost years of my life. Nothing but bread for food — darkness, filth, beatings, torture, killings, bitterness and humiliation. I wish they could experience it for just 24 hours.”

Ah, he's just a little emotional. He'll get over it when he realizes that War is Not the Answer. (Don't think about the awful stories of beatings and torture. It's not as bad as, say, an artist in the States getting turned down for an NEA grant. Just think of pleasant things; go to the happy place. Ommmmm....)

(Via Wog Blog.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:09 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

February 23, 2003

Meanwhile, back in the real world

LT SMASH is stationed Somewhere where there are some multilateral goings-on. Like this:

The British aren’t the only allies I’ve run across here, however. I’ve also spotted contingents of Australians, Italians, and Czechs.

And even:

“Canadian?” I said, somewhat surprised.

Check it out.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:38 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

The Biased Broadcasting Company

It looks as if those polls showing that 95% of the people in Britain thought America was like Nazi Germany only without the orderly queues were a bit... off. Or at least there are some people in England who are sick of the anti-Americanism that apparently permeates the BBC's current programming.

(Via Craig Ratapia on NZPundit.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:11 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

February 22, 2003

If it's Tuesday, this must be Baghdad

War tourism: the cheapest way to see Iraq. Heck, they'll pay you, lots more than the average Iraqi makes. Well, go on, what are you waiting for? Surely you aren't afraid of a little ridicule? (P.S.: I wonder what "Adra'a Basharia" does mean. Human panty shield? Human diaper?)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:53 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

E. Nough explains

The pattern seems clear to me too. I am not particularly smart or politically savvy (voted for Clinton twice), yet every time I read about Saddam Hussein's empire-building ambitions, I know exactly what we have to prevent. If Hussein gets his way, we'll be facing a new Soviet Union-like entity, only one on the political equivalent of methamphetamines. I got to see one Evil Empire crumble in my lifetime; I don't really feel like living through the rise of another one. (Those of you passersby who think that Amerikkka is the new Evil Empire can just keep on going.)

As to the mystery of why the administration hasn't spelled this out? I am sure that the reasons are complex. Among them is probably the fact that the reaction of people to this current menace (namely, "What, me worry?") is so much like that of the reaction of people to the rise of You Know Who back in the thirties that Bush probably just doesn't want to deal with the flack. I can't say as I blame him; but sometimes you just gotta lay it on the line, and if people don't like it, tough. (See the comments of one "Just John" to E. Nough's post for a typical dunderheaded response to the question of what more proof do we need:

But I think that we're still missing a triggering event. Iraq would need to actually DO something (currently, not 10-15 years ago) before I would support any kind of invasion.

I am afraid I cut and pasted those words exactly as I found them. I can't really add anything more, except to say that if I had to hear this sort of thing from people day in and day out, I'd give up on ever trying to communicate the urgency of the situation to them too. "But why should we lock the barn door? I say we wait until something happens showing that it is necessary to keep the barn door locked before we lock it..." I certainly hope "Just John" does not treat his finances with the same finicky care.

Anyway, read the whole thing. Know what I think? I think that E. Nough's secret identity is... no, if I told you, I'd have to kill you. ;)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:38 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Doom of the IslamoNazis

After reading this article on the all-female crew of a KC-135 Stratotanker air refueling mission over Afghanistan, I thought this quote was apropos:

'But no living man am I! You look upon a woman. Éowym I am, Éomund's daughter. You stand between me and my lord and kin. Begone, if you be not deathless! For living or dark undead, I will smite you, if you touch him.' -- The Return of the King.

(Via The Imperial Canine.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:09 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

February 21, 2003

Message to Osama

A Muslim writes to Osama bin Laden in response to the latest cobbled together fake taped message:

Shut up, bitch.

(Via Tim Blair)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:04 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

February 19, 2003

Are you ready?

Well, the website is.

(Via the Last Page.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Poets for the War

Yep, you read that right -- it's a website dedicated to

poets who support and understand President Bush’s policies, the war on terrorism, or the liberation of Iraq from under Saddam Hussein al Tikriti’s crushing heel.

I haven't read any of the poems yet, so I can't say if they are any good, but they have to be better (or at least no worse than) some of the anti-war offerings we have been subjected to lately.

(Via Spiced Sass.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:52 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

February 18, 2003

All the lonely tyrants

While reading this article on the life and times of country-boy-done-good Saddam Hussein, I began to envision a new sitcom, along the lines of The Osbournes. Only instead of family squabbles, backstage antics, and dog poop, it would feature assassinations, grandiose speeches, and summary executions. Call it Leader Knows Best, or simply, Al-Khatib.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:40 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

February 17, 2003

A different kind of rally

This might cheer people up some: there was also a Rally for America that was held in Denver yesterday. It's a little different from all the Support Saddam Hussein antiwar rallies that were being held elsewhere. For one thing, there is an unfortunate absence of puppets, clowns on stilts, and people in ugly costumes. So no wonder I haven't heard much about it. Just a bunch of ordinary joes and janes wearing their Sears best and waving a lot of (ugh!) American flags. There is even a sign saying "Pray 4 the USA." They'll never show that on CNN. (If it had said "Goddess hates war" that would have been okay.)

(Via Meryl Yourish.)

Update: Cranky Hermit has more pictures and an entry on this.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 05:55 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

February 16, 2003

Meanwhile, back at the abattoir

Gary Farber* links to an article about appalling discoveries of mass graves on (in?) the Ivory Coast. (That's that African country that has been getting the French into some unilateral trouble lately.) I supposed this is another example of just how fubared that entire continent is, in one way or another. I have no solutions, and we can't be everywhere. Perhaps one day there will be a peace march for Africa.

*Main site link; I don't trust Googlespot.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:28 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Iraqi Kurds speak

No, they aren't down with the peace marches either. Oh, but who cares what they think? The People (mostly white and upper-middle-class, safe, comfortable, Western people) have spoken. You're off the island, Iraqi Kurds.

(Via the Wog Blogger, who is goodgoodgood, not badbadbad.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:16 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Twice exiled

More evidence that the "peace marches" were nothing more than a huge ego-boost for the protesters and an opportunity to voice resentment against George W. Bush and Americans in general for whatever:

Iraqi exiles don't seem too pleased with the marchers. (Via Dean Esmay.)

Also, via Joanne Jacobs: it looks like the peace demonstrators might actually be emboldening Saddam, and therefore bringing war closer. Good job, guys! Oh well, at least there will be more dead brown children for you to weep over. Always look for the silver lining, right?

I have a prediction: there will be at least one or two things that go wrong that can be directly traced to the actions of these "peace" activists and human shields that will result in more Iraqi deaths than would have otherwise happened; and that this will be denied to the last breath of any "peace" activist involved, no matter how compelling the evidence. (For instance, I can see how all these demonstrators would seem to indicate to a warrior culture the Middle East's that the West is weak and can be easily beaten in a fight; which will result in battle started too soon, or the release of difficult-to-control WMDs, or something like that.) If they ever read anything other than vegan cookbooks, these stupid hippies would realize that their misguided efforts to instill "peace at any price" have caused more deaths than the cholera.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

February 15, 2003

Democracy for Iraq

See the new image to the left? Get it here.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:40 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Too weird to not be true

"Sad"? Osama bin Laden's son's name is "Sad"? How... apropos.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:34 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Eighties rejects

Best Steyn-line ever:

If you're the sort of person [...] who keeps chanting robotically, ''Yeah, but the U.S. backed Saddam in the '80s" (to which the only response is: ''So what? I liked Bananarama in the '80s'')...
Too cool. And an opportunity to play: what's your Shameful Eighties Secret? I'll start by admitting mine: With Sympathy, Ministry's first release -- before they were industrial, they were classic 80s synth-pop-goth! I still have the album -- on vinyl, . (They don't seem to be ashamed of it anymore either. Hey, embrace your youthful mistakes.)

(Via Sean Kirby.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:29 AM | Comments (18) | TrackBack

February 14, 2003

In "Forgotten" Afghanistan

John Weidner has more on the so-called "nothing" that the US is doing in Afghanistan right now.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:30 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

February 12, 2003

They can balance a bomb on the end of their noses too!

Via Blogatelle, comes this little article: Sea Lions Guard US Ships. No kidding. Guess that dolphin thing didn't work out... (What I heard is, the finned ones became big time movie stars, fame went to their heads, suddenly the US military-supplied chum wasn't good enough -- the same old sad story. Now I hear that the last pair of reconnaisance dolphins are retired, living off Catalina Island in a seedy bungalow. They bicker and fight constantly because of Mr. Dolphin's drinking problem and the habit he has of ogling pretty young female porpoises, which pisses the Mrs. off no end because she has kept her looks, thank you very much. Also, a gig at Sea World fell through (also due to his drinking, though he swears he wasn't the one who pissed in the pool just before Shamu was to swim in). Now he spends his days at the reef, telling any newcomer who happens to swim by tedious stories all about his days doing spy work for the US Navy. It's sad, really.)

This "map" is funny too. I'd say someone has a public relations problem.

Update: here's a map of how we see Europe! Heh heh. And here's one on how the Europeans (well, the French and Germans, anyway) see us. Ah, learning leading to understanding, ain't it wonderful?

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

If I had a rocket launcher

They've positioned missile launchers around D.C. you know, just in case. Eeee.

(Via The Gleeful Extremist, whose permalinks are off [the permalink is working now so I fixed the url].)

Update: troops and tanks around Heathrow. Blair is taking no chances. (Via Andrew.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:27 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

February 11, 2003

Déjà vu all over again

I think one of the reasons I find the current antiwar imbroglios to be so frustrating to encounter is the fact that it's happened all before, and within recorded memory. Please read this essay by George Orwell (written, incidentally, when he was thirty-eight years old, only a year and a half younger than I am now), about H.G. Wells and the reaction of that literary celebrity and would-be social engineer to the phenomenon of Hitler, and then turn your attentions to any of the bloviations by the contemporary intellectual elite on the lack of threat posed by Saddam Hussein to the world. I especially like this bit:

A lifelong habit of thought stands between him and an understanding of Hitler’s power.

Mr Wells, like Dickens, belongs to the non-military middle class. The thunder of guns, the jingle of spurs, the catch in the throat when the old flag goes by, leave him manifestly cold. He has an invincible hatred of the fighting, hunting, swashbuckling side of life, symbolised in all his early books by a violent propaganda against horses.

The device of people getting stuck in an endlessly repeating loop of events is supposed to be one of the more shopworn clichés of science fiction, but I have noticed that it is in fact an all too real part of existence. That does not make me very happy.

(Via Horsefeathers.)

Update: I snipped the quote -- I needed less of it than I first thought to make my point.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:24 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Blog of the day

There's so much good on blackbloc that I didn't want to link to just one entry (also, Blogspot, archives, you know the drill). Just start at the fine-toothed fisking of Dave Matthews' pronouncements from on high on Iraq from February 9th, and read down. I myself haven't said anything about this latest pretentious screed from a member of the artistic community, because I have never cared for the Dave Matthews Band's music (one note of one of their songs guarantees I will change the station), and besides, haven't we established that artists -- actors, musicians, the lot of them -- are mostly idiots on this matter?

I am of course old enough to remember Gulf War I quite well. I remember that a lot of musicians came out with "Don't Blow Up Iraqi Children"* ads on MTV, and nothing is more insufferable than seeing rock stars paste on the sincerity. Very few rock stars (I speak of this genre because that was my main preoccupation twelve years ago) can do the sincere thing well (U2 was one of the few bands to have this skill, and even they overused it, and they were out of the picture during GW I). Most should not even try. It just pisses people off.

*I paraphrase. I don't remember the exact nature of the slogans, but they were on that childish level.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:00 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

February 09, 2003

Wait for the big kaboom

Oh, this is just great: Tons of boric acid hijacked in SoCal.

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 7 (UPI) -- Law enforcement agencies in the Los Angeles area were on alert Friday night for a stolen truck hauling 44,000 pounds of boric acid, a material that can be used as an ingredient in explosives.
Oh, goody.

(Via Blogmonger.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:46 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Jumping to conclusions

That's what a lot of bloggers have been doing, according to Letter from Gotham. The issue is this anti-war group, United For Peace and Justice, which wants to hold a peace march. The story being spread around is that they have been denied permission to hold a protest and therefore their First Amendment rights are being trampled on. As you will see if you read the actual complaint, that is not so. I had read about this earlier, and it seemed as if there was something missing from the story. Now I know what it was. Details, baby, details.

(Via Instapundit.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:14 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

February 07, 2003

Will this go down the memory hole?

Remember this guy? The one UN inspectors in Iraq allowed Iraqi guards to haul away? Well, his family is asking for help in finding him. However, and perhaps unfortunately, they are asking Amnesty International. I guess you can see by that last sentence that I am not too impressed by AI's current track record in really being able to deal with thug regimes. I can only hope that the publicity this case has already received will help to get the man freed (if he is still in freeable condition, that is), but I don't have much hope. Amnesty International's method of getting results through the inducement of guilt only works on government entities that have not gone into fuck-you-all mode, and I am afraid that for better or worse Hussein has been in that mode for some time now.

(Via Instapundit.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:02 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

February 06, 2003

Evil alert

Tacitus has lots of links to various Powell and Iraq's-material-breach issues, including one (in his comments) to this odious essay, wherein the writer opines that (bolds added by me):

A key component of the alleged Iraq-al Qaeda link is based on "detainees tell us…". That claim must be rejected. On December 27 the Washington Post reported U.S. officials acknowledged detainees being beaten, roughed up, threatened with torture by being turned over to officials of countries known to practice even more severe torture. In those circumstances, nothing "a detainee" says can be taken as evidence of truth - people being beaten or tortured will say anything to stop the pain. Similarly, defectors' stories cannot be relied on alone, as they have every legitimate basis for exaggerating their stories and their own involvement in order to guarantee access to protection and asylum.
You know, sometimes I feel like reviving my mock world-domination campaign, just so I can say about creeps like this: "When I rule the world, this person will have his entrails fed to dogs while he still lives!" But I've become a (slightly) kinder, gentler*, hobbit-loving blogger, so I'll just say that I hope this fellow doesn't have a child who gets raped. "Why should I believe you, dear? You would say anything to get your rapist behind bars, after all." Fucking evil scum like this should... be free to express themselves and show everyone what they really are.

*Ha ha! Psyched you all out.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:07 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Argumentum ad cooties

You know, even if most of those who are against the US going to war in Iraq are not doing so merely out of anti-Bush and/or anti-Republican Party spite, that certainly is not the impression other people are getting. To all those who keep lifting the bar for what they'll accept as proof that war is an acceptable solution to Hussein's recalcitrance, I have these counter questions:

  • What evidence can you show that will satisfy ME that leaving Hussein alone will not lead to more terrorist deaths in the future?
  • What proof do you have that sanctions and inspections are working?
  • What proof do you have that backing down from confronting Hussein will not lead to the US finding itself in somewhat the same situation as a bleeding man in a shark pool?
I actually don't expect anyone to be able to answer these questions, because they are as unanswerable, really, as the questions antiwar proponents keep asking over and over.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:28 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Mad as hell


(Wish I'd thought of that domain name.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 02:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

February 05, 2003

Unilateral or Universal?

Well, folks, looks like the United States is all alone in the world -- as long as you don't pay attention to all those other countries behind the curtain.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:40 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Irrefutable and Undeniable

How much more evidence do you need?

Update: even more damning evidence!!

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:53 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Course of Empire

Matthew Parris is not antiwar because he thinks we will fail -- he is antiwar because he thinks we will win, and that that will be a bad thing. He states it thusly in a single sentence surrounded by white space for effect, just like my teacher taught us last week in my Non-Fiction Writing class:

I am not afraid that this war will fail. I am afraid that it will succeed.
And he goes on to explain the badness of the US winning in Iraq:
I am afraid that it will prove to be the first in an indefinite series of American interventions. I am afraid that it is the beginning of a new empire: an empire that I am afraid Britain may have little choice but to join.
In other words, 1) we won't get that chastening humbling that apparently we as a nation need for some reason -- three-thousand murdered people wasn't enough, I guess, and the Columbia disaster has not made a dent in anyone except tired professional pundits; and 2) we will build an empire, and everyone will have to join Or Else, and that would be Just Awful. I am not sure why Mr. Parris thinks that would be a horrible state of affairs -- Empire = Bad, that is just the given, I guess. (Even though being an empire actually seemed to do Britain good back in the day, at least for a while.) But I can tell you why I think an American Empire directly responsible for the rest of the world would be a bad thing, and incidentally, why it means there will be no "American Empire" ever. This is why:

Jebus forbid we should have to rule over these grousing, whiny other countries and listen one iota more to the din of their complaints than we have to now. We have enough land. We don't need any more. And as much as I support the ideal of encouraging every country in the world to form democratic governments and implement the rule of rational law instead of mindless custom, it is ultimately not our responsibility to force people to a better way of life if they are too benighted and addicted to their own dysfunctional culture to do so. We are certainly not responsible for the self-inflicted miseries of others, and that includes preferring, because they are used to it, the rule of a "strongman" who will "take care of his people" instead of learning to run their own lives. The manuals are freely available, we are not keeping the workings of stable government under lock and key.

We will do the best we can to fix whatever problems in the world we may have caused, within reason. (Meaningless, impossible-to-implement gestures such as signing the Kyoto Treaty are not "within reason.") We will try not to break too many things while we take out as many of the obstacles to ROTW happiness as possible. (And if you think that Saddam Hussein and his thug posse aren't obstacles to the happiness of a lot of the ROTW, then you need to do some catching up.) We will pay attention, of course, to those who have or can hurt us the worst first, and tough titty if you don't like that. But we aren't going to adopt the whole freaking world. We aren't everyody's daddy.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:30 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

February 04, 2003


Steven Den Beste weighs in on this teapot storm. There is nothing like having your argument demolished by an engineer. He knows where all the stress points are... He goes right to the meat of the thing the Agonist still refuses to acknowledge (AFAIK, I haven't checked up much since I posted my take on the Agonist's declaration):

Sean-Paul thinks he knows what we are risking. He thinks he knows what evil we must do. He reluctantly agrees that war is necessary anyway. Why is it that he has such a hard time accepting the idea that others may also know those things, and also advocate war? Why does he believe he is the only person who can advocate war and remain moral while doing so?

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:32 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Interview with the Vampire

I came across an account of this interview with Saddam Hussein somewhere earlier today. I thought it was a parody. But I guess not. Sample of the mustachio'd one's words:

Saddam Hussein: You are aware that every major event must encounter some difficulty. On the subject of the inspectors and the resolutions that deal with Iraq you must have been following it and you must have a view and a vision as to whether these resolutions have any basis in international law. Nevertheless the Security Council produced them.

These resolutions - implemented or not - or the motivation behind these resolutions could lead the current situation to the path of peace or war. Therefore it's a critical situation. Let us also remember the unjust suffering of the Iraqi people. For the last thirteen years since the blockade was imposed, you must be aware of the amount of harm that it has caused the Iraqi people, particularly the children and the elderly as a result of the shortage of food and medicine and other aspects of their life. Therefore we are facing a critical situation.

Jebus, he talks like a mealy-mouthed academic. No wonder they love him so.

Via On the Third Hand: February 04, 2003.)

Update: this is why I thought the interview was a parody. This article is a parody, but the actual interview was not. My confusion is resolved!

Posted by Andrea Harris at 06:30 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

What's goin' on

Steven den Beste has the roundup of war preparations.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 05:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

"He's not used them"

Alistair Sims Cooke on appeasement -- of Hitler, that is. One thing the intellectuals are always saying is that "we have to learn from our past mistakes." I think that is what this present administration is trying to do: "Okay, let's pull the tyrant's fangs now instead of waiting for him to build up his arsenal and conquer all of the Middle East the way Hitler conquered Europe." What do the intellectuals say to that? Well, for the most part, it's been "Oh no! We didn't mean for us to learn that lesson!"

(Via Common Sense and Wonder.)

Update: I meant Alistair Cooke, not Sims. A slight short circuit to the brain. Thanks to the alert readers who contacted me about this.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:49 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

War -- what is it good for?

Gimpysoft blogs about N.Z. Bear's cross blog debate proposal between the (we will use these terms in lieu of better ones) anti-war and pro-war folks. Stand Down has responded. What I have noticed about the anti-war and pro-war sides is that the anti-war folks all seem to be worried mostly about the possible future (will the Bush administration establish democracy in Iraq -- which sounds rather as if Democracy was something one could slap on a country like a coat of paint -- or just abandon the place; will millions of civilians be killed; will the Arab street get even angrier and hate us even more; will world opinion think any less of us -- etc.); while the pro-war people are mostly (though not exclusively) concentrating on what is going on right now (with the exception of fears of Hussein being able to build and launch a nuclear weapon at some future time) -- are Iraqis not being tortured and killed right now, is Hussein not a dictator with expansionist aims right now, is he hiding weapons and leading the UN inspection team a merry dance right now.

I am as worried about future ramifications of any action we take as anybody -- except for the "anger of the Arab street" and "world opinion," as if the latter was some monolithic thing anyway -- but a lot of the anti-war people seem to not merely be speculating but to be declaring that their prognostications will come true. There is a similar dislike of uncertainty affecting both groups, but so far the weight of actual present-day evidence is on the pro-war side, or so it seems to my inexpert eyes. When anti-war spokespersons make claims that are based not on fact but on political biases (i.e., George W. Bush is going to war in order to steal all of Iraq's oil resources*, the American military will bomb indiscriminately -- for objections in that vein just look up last year's No War in Afghanistan screeds and replace "Afghanistan" with "Iraq" -- and so on), I am not inclined to take their arguments as seriously.

*Anyone who leaves a "Doesn't he?" comment here will have their comment deleted. I am no longer interested in the "he wants to steal their Oooiiiillll" argument.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:23 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

February 03, 2003

He was only a grocer's slaughterer

The WAPO presents this Saddam-cuddling article without commentary. One must, of course, take the words of "Mrs. Yawo" with a grain of salt, since I am sure that there was an Iraqi government minder present at the interview. Still, I am sure that there are in this country as well as other Western nations plenty of people who would willingly trade the relative uncertainty of our fairly democratic, semi-capitalist lifestyle for the "safety" of life under a ruthless dictator, just so they could bring home bales of food and soap for under a dollar. The way this article is written also makes it seem as if the misfortunes that have beset the once prosperous nation were the result of those Mean People Who Attacked Iraq For No Good Reason, and paints Hussein as a kind papa who only wants to feed his beleagured people, instead of the tyrant who wastes his country's oil revenue trying to become the first nuclear-powered Caliph. Is this what the media pros mean when they talk about "objectivity"?

(Via Juan Gato)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 30, 2003

United we stand

Not all European leaders are against action against Saddam Hussein. For instance, these leaders:

Messrs. Aznar, Durão Barroso, Berlusconi, Blair, Medgyessy, Miller and Fogh Rasmussen are, respectively, the prime ministers of Spain, Portugal, Italy, the U.K., Hungary, Poland and Denmark. Mr. Havel is the Czech president.
Read their letter.

Via the Agonist and Jay Reding.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:14 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

January 27, 2003

The man in the back said everyone attack

Bill Whittle has written another good one. I'll just present a sample:

We and two or three other nations, old and true friends who have stood by us through flame and terror, now confront a menace the likes of which we have not seen for almost a thousand years. We face an adversary in the full bloom of romance with death and destruction, an enemy willing – eager -- to spray our cities with a virus it has taken armies of scientists and doctors, working diligently through centuries of research and learning, to eradicate from the blood-soak rolls of history. We face fanatics who would bring down the entire world, themselves included, in a radioactive Armageddon, secure in their own twisted souls of the heavenly rewards of sexual gratification and revenge for their many abject failures. We face people such as this, people who are so far beyond the pale of human mercy and so corrupted by black and bitter rage that they must be killed, for nothing else will stop them, nothing – as they tell us at every opportunity.

We have blithely ignored them for many years, turned a deaf ear to their warnings and fatwahs, turned an even more blinded eye to their procession of assassinations, massacres, bombings and attacks. Despite our recent and proven record of aiding and defending innocent Muslims in Kuwait, the Balkans, and elsewhere, we have been singled out as a Satan, a nation of sub-human infidels, and been the target of slander and incitement to murder that would have shamed the most fanatical Jesuit in the Spanish Inquisition.

A few weeks ago someone asked on Charles Johnsons' site (link lost I'm afraid -- update: the direct link to the pertinent post, not the link to LGF!) why we care so much about the "Arab street." I replied something along the lines that it was a normal human response to be concerned about a group of people who were so obviously miserable, and to want to fix their situation somehow. See, our responses are normal, theirs are not. Go read the rest of Bill's essay. (PS: the title is a shout-out; he'll know what I mean.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:23 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

January 26, 2003

Murderers, Inc.

Take a good look at the guy in the photograph in this post -- the one clutching his notebook to his chest and trying to get the pile of human lard in the passenger seat to listen to him. Take a real good look, because he's probably dead now, along with his family. Thanks to the United Nations officials who did nothing as the Iraqi guards dragged the man away. It is obvious from the expression on the man's face that he had something very important to tell the UN officials, but they decided to "not get involved." I hope Saddam is paying them a lot.

When are we closing down that organization and putting that building in New York to some good use?

Update: Dipnut as more on this. Apparently CNN and other news agencies are whitewashing the story. Great.

And one more: an expanded commentary, with an extra picture of the man being dragged off, from Trojan Horseshoes. That is what oppression looks like, people.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:31 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

January 24, 2003

Never forget

Remember Daniel Pearl.

(Via Damian Penny.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:51 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Leave It To Uday

The No-War-For-Any-Reason crowd might want to take a look at these articles so they can see just who and what they are suggesting we abandon to their fate in Iraq: IOC investigating alleged torture of Iraqi athletes (via Captain Yips), and the children in the "children's prison" (via my own Googling). And here's something for the Enviroweenies: what about Saddam's efforts to turn the marshes of Iraq (possibly where human beings first learned about agriculture, and once considered to be the inspiration for the Garden of Eden) into something more closely resembling the Plain of Gorgoroth? All he needs is his own little homemade Mt. Doom, and Sauron Saddam has got it made.

But war is so icky. You're right. Call it off.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:14 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 23, 2003

Report from Baghdad

It looks as if the Iraqi people haven't gotten the message that they are supposed to be against the Evil, Imperialistic US invading their country and dropping bombs on their cottages and cute little hobbit-children and getting Saddam's moustache mussed; on the contrary, they, or at least a portion of them, are ready to risk their lives to see an end to Saddam's regime. This article in the Times of London has the story of signs of rebellion breaking out. Read it, or go to Tim Blair's site and read the excerpts if the article is registration-only.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:04 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 20, 2003

Rule Britannia

This article is called Why Britain needs more guns. It is on the BBC website. There's nothing like the realization that one's own government no longer seems interested in protecting the actual citizens of the country it is supposed to be governing to clear the cobwebs from one's mind.

(Via lots of people.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 01:06 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

January 18, 2003

Rock on

I am suddenly filled with a desire to buy all of Keith Richards' solo work, as well as the entire Rolling Stones back catalogue.

(Via Tim Blair. )

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:20 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Called up

Sgt. Mom's daughter, a Marine, is on her way to Kuwait.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:58 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

January 17, 2003

A most excellent smack down

I'm just collecting good stuff from all over. Bigwig has some words of wisdom for some pipsqueak leader of some "militant Islamic" (oh, hahahahaha) group -- Ham Ass, or something -- who has made the usual hyperbolic we're-gonna-kill-all-Americans-and-then-run-over-them-with-cars-and-then-pinch-and-bite-them-and-call-them-names-and-then-we'll-get-mad threats that have been the characteristic "militant Islamic" (oh, hahahahaha) mode of communication ever since rocks were hard. Anyway, read Bigwig's reaction.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:01 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Draw me a picture

What Steve says. Sure, it's unfair. So is being blown to smithereens by someone who doesn't like reality.

Oh yeah -- for those who object:


Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:26 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Potluck for Putzes

Christopher Hitchens tries to din some sense into the heads of some Seattle peacenuggets:

There are at least three well-established reasons to favor what is euphemistically termed "regime change" in Iraq. The first is the flouting by Saddam Hussein of every known law on genocide and human rights, which is why the Senate--at the urging of Bill Clinton--passed the Iraq Liberation Act unanimously before George W. Bush had even been nominated. The second is the persistent effort by Saddam's dictatorship to acquire the weapons of genocide: an effort which can and should be thwarted and which was condemned by the United Nations before George W. Bush was even governor of Texas. The third is the continuous involvement by the Iraqi secret police in the international underworld of terror and destabilization. I could write a separate essay on the evidence for this; at the moment I'll just say that it's extremely rash for anybody to discount the evidence that we already possess. (And I shall add that any "peace movement" that even pretends to care for human rights will be very shaken by what will be uncovered when the Saddam Hussein regime falls. Prisons, mass graves, weapon sites... just you wait.)
Something tells me he's not going to have much success. Once Saddam falls and the aforementioned atrocities are exposed to the world, the response of the "Peace Movement" will be to bat their eyelashes and change the subject. I wait for the day when the administration (or some administration) finally turns its attentions on Saudi Arabia. I expect that the peacedinks will be out in force with their "No Blood For Oil!" and "War Kills Children and Other Living Things" signs for the poor, beleaguered Saudis as well.

(Via Gimpysoft)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 09:55 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

January 16, 2003

Knocking Down Stupid Anti-War Arguments 101

Jonah Goldberg is not always the sharpest knife in the drawer (remember the Mark-Twain-favored-censorship brouhaha?), but he was on in this old column of his (from last October): Same Old Tiresome Arguments of War. In the intervening months nothing much has changed: we are still hearing the same old dreary mantras from the same butt-headed people. So this column is a reference for some rebuttals that might at least get the loons out of your face long enough for you to find your car keys. Some highlights:

Re the scary "Arab street":

Maybe Victor Davis Hanson knows the answer, but for the life of me I can't remember the last time the United States was so willing to let an unarmed mob of illiterate malcontents half a world away dictate American foreign policy.
Re the notion that we can't do a thing until the Israelis and the Palestinians hug:
But others, Saddam Hussein for example, subscribe to this view only because if a final settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a necessary precondition for any invasion of Iraq, Saddam can make sure that Iraq is never invaded.
Re the idea that we need "UN approval," as if the UN were, well, God, or someone objective and uninvolved in the grubby doings of this mortal coil:
People who think we must go through the U.N. seem to believe that the U.N. is an objectively neutral or moral institution. In their eyes, getting approval from the U.N. is like getting approval from a judge or a priest. Or, they think the U.N. is where the nations of the world put aside their petty self-interest and do whatever is in the best interests of humanity.

There's only one problem with this. None of the nations in the U.N. — especially the permanent members of the Security Council — are acting on such pure motives. France isn't opposed to invading Iraq out of an abiding love of peace. It's opposed to an American invasion largely because France has been trading with Iraq for years, despite the sanctions. France has billions of dollars in oil contracts it doesn't want to lose.

Re the number one on the Stupid Argument Hit Parade, "No Blood For Oil":
This was all the rage when I was in college during the first Gulf War and it hasn't gotten any better with age. The basic argument goes like this: Bush and Cheney are oil guys. They want to get their grubby hands on Iraq's oil. Ergo, this is a war for oil. I guess it could be stated with more sophistication, but why go to all the trouble of putting a dress on a pig?
Re the ignorance about the rich that is implicit in these arguments:
Every day, I hear from people who honestly think Bush & co. want to invade Iraq to make a few more bucks. These people are either stoopid or they are trapped in a Twilight Zone where Thomas Nast cartoons seem real.
Read the rest, and memorize. I'm sure they will come in handy in the next few months.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:39 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

January 15, 2003

No more Mister Nice Guy

Steven Den Beste gets grouchy.

But that's not the point. Magullo wants Hamdi to be treated as a full citizen because Magullo is trying to claim that the act of aiming a rifle at an American soldier, who is serving his nation in a declared war, and of pulling the trigger and killing that soldier, is protected speech under the First Amendment (in the generalized form of "protected expression").

After all, it's not as if the soldier he kills matters to anyone, is it? He's a soldier; it's not like he's anyone's son or brother or cousin or father or anything. Soldiers are grown in a farm under Cheyenne Mountain out of piles of horse manure just like any fungus; it's perfectly OK to kill them – at least, it is if they've got US flags sewed on their shoulders. Killing anyone else in the world is wrong, but killing Americans? Well, that's just fine and dandy.

Therefore, Magullo is claiming that Hamdi should be released so he can get back to his exercise of his First Amendment rights, and kill more US soldiers or maybe some US civilians while he's at it. Can't have too much freedom of expression, after all.

Besides which, the good guys in this war are having a hard time coming up with people to fight on their side and they need all the people they can get. Hamdi needs to be released so he can go back to fighting on behalf of the good guys, so that they can defeat the evil Americans.

I somehow thought that it was obvious that actively attempting to kill US soldiers wasn't "protected expression" under the First Amendment. I somehow thought it obvious that any kind of violence wasn't "protected expression". I thought it was obvious that this was top bracket sophistry. Silly me; I forgot that killing American soldiers is actually performance art!

Sweet. Go, Steve!

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:24 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 13, 2003

Battleships confide in me

Gary Farber writes an excellent, important post concerning the dead, military hardware, and proper regard for both. The controversy, such as it is, is over a beam from the World Trade Center that will be "melted down and used to configure the leading edge of the ship's bow of the USS New York" (here's an article about it). The reaction of some lefty-bloggers has apparently been to shriek "sacrilege!" (Links to their posts in Gary's post.) The attitude towards the new warship is one of fear and disgust -- you'd think the U.S. military was Sauron and the USS New York was a new Ring. Gary is sick of this attitude:

I can't help also be struck by the seeming presumption that, somehow, military hardware is singularly, inherently, evil, rather than mere inanimate object, able like any other to be used for good or ill, for the saving of lives or the unnecessary wasting of lives, unable to decide on its own, or take on any moral value of its own, but only a tool to be used at the choice of humans whose future actions we cannot predict and know not of.

This seems to me to be a dire presumption, and that there are leftists who make such a presumption is a critical part of what presently ails some of the Left.

There's more; read it all.

(Note: I went to leave a "thank you" note in Gary's comments but the comment that was already in their was yet another example of the wrong-headed, nasty-spirited, just-plain-hysterical crap that has driven me far away from the leftist end of the political spectrum. I let the commenter have it to the best of my limited abilities, but I am running out of things to say to these people -- who are often quite sane and reasonable on other subjects -- when they get this way. I can't let it just remain as "oh, they've got a bug up their ass," anymore, but I am losing the ability to respond coherently to some of the things they apparently believe are rational positions to take on an issue. It makes me feel like I'm the one losing my mind.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:24 AM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

January 11, 2003

US troops in Afghanistan

The horror continues! When will this atrocity END??? Whatever happened to the old reliable baby-killing foreign-women-molesting brown-people-crushing Amerikkkiller soldier?

(Via Instapundit.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:48 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

January 09, 2003

Note from an infidel

Dear Muslims:

It has come to the attention of some of us that many of you are worried about the negative publicity your religion has received of late. Well, I have a very simple plan that will almost immediately gain you the goodwill of non-Muslims everywhere:


That is all.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:50 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

January 06, 2003

Massive attack

First I'd like to start out by noting how subtle is Steven Den Beste's way of referring to some some moron's nasty-ass, stupid statement as "so-and-so comments." He never does, for instance, what I just did. Steven Den Beste is much more smoove than I have the talent to be.

Second, I'd like to make an announcement to individual Palestinians everywhere: you guys need to stop the Stupidfada, and stop it now, because if you don't, at the end of the day you are all going to end up dead. That is because the combined forces of the United States, Israel, and what other allies we may still have who aren't still trying to play the appease-'em-all game are going to kill you. And you know what? Your so-called Arab "brothers" (who despise you and throw you out of their countries whenever they can) won't care. Oh, they'll blither and moan and cry crocodile tears, but at the end of the day the only sound coming out of Riyadh or Cairo or Baghdad will be a sigh of relief. Again: your so-called Arab "brothers" don't care about you. You know who does care about you? Us, we in the "West," idiots that we are. Big softies that we are. Big sentimental slobs who still try to see the silver lining in every cloud of hate, who still harbor some hope that you have the same desire to live peaceful, productive lives that we do. But you know what? Sympathy only goes so far. There is not an endless supply of the stuff in the human soul. It can be beaten out of people. It can be drained like blood from a wound. It can vanish. And when it does, stick your head between your knees and kiss your ass good-bye.

Oh, we'll feel real bad about wiping you all out. We've raised the expression of Guilt to an art form. We'll make movies about the horror of our deeds, and erect museums to your sorry dead selves. We'll flagellate ourselves and the broadcast laments of "how could we let it go so far" will go out to Andromeda. But you'll still be dead. So stop it.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:48 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Operaman-a is okay-a

I never watched the entire memorial concert for New York that they had after September 11th (the one where the famous booing of Hilary Clinton was cut out on the dvd release) so I was unaware that Adam Sandler had participated. You know, after reading the lyrics of his performance, suddenly his shtick doesn't seem so annoying.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Well, that didn't take long

Ladies and Gentlemen, the first recipient of the Spleenville "Israelis Are Terrorists Too" WITH CHEESE award goes to Jim (see the comments to this post; and see the comments to this post as well).

Posted by Andrea Harris at 08:08 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

January 05, 2003

Killing ground

In light of today's atrocity, I wonder how many days (if it even takes days) will pass before I come across someone's blog post or a comment on someone's blog about how sure, it's awful what Palestinian terrorists are doing, but remember, Israel engages in terrorism too. I just can't wait until I get to have the rest of my day ruined by reading something like that.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 10:27 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

The killer's admirers

Arnold Ahlert would like to know why "they're 'his' people" is considered a fine answer to the observation that Saddam Hussein has murdered 180,000 Iraqis. So would I.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:59 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

January 02, 2003


Those who are still under the impression that well-to-do, upper-middle-class people have nothing to lose in this war would do well to read this. But they won't.

(Via Dean Esmay.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 12:03 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Watch out for 2010? Well, we'll see...

Posted by Andrea Harris at 03:03 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 01, 2003

Celebrity good guy

David Letterman rocks, but you already knew that.

Posted by Andrea Harris at 04:12 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Yasser gets Arafarked

The clever posters at Fark have been having fun with a goggle-eyed photo of Yasser Arafat. The Yasser Chicken is my favorite. (Via LGF.)

Posted by Andrea Harris at 11:39 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack