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Peace Doesn’t Work, Obama Informs Nobel Committee

By Jason Ditz, December 10, 2009

President Barack Obama accepted his Nobel Peace Prize today, and as expected he acknowledged that even he isn’t clear why he got the prize, noting that there were millions of people more deserving.

But President Obama’s “acceptance speech” was far from an expression of contrition, spending most of the speech defending his War in Afghanistan as an inherently just war, and rambling on about all the other recent American wars and his ostensible justifications of them.

Then, in what must’ve been one of the least humble and least appropriate speeches ever given before the Nobel Committee, Obama declared non-violence to be impractical and insisted that the “limits of reason” meant that the American military would continue to have to be used for “moral” reasons.

In extolling the virtues of war while accepting what was supposed to be a prize for radical advocates of peace, President Obama had what could only be called one of the quintessential jerkass moments of American history, an embarrassing exhortation to the advocates of peace to accept violence as the one true way of solving the world’s problems.

Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | "Hope and Change", Deception, Militarism | 2 Comments

Outdoing the Kafkaesque: Egypt’s new US designed underground Gaza wall

December 11, 2009 — People’s Geography

Egypt's underground Gaza barrier (Source: BBC)

Just when you thought things could not become more Kafkaesque comes apparent confirmation that the US-backed Egyptian government is building an underground steel barrier designed to cut off one of the few lifelines sustaining the Gaza Ghetto, the tunnel economy. The BBC reports that the huge underground wall will be 10-11km (6-7 miles) long, will extend 18 metres below the surface and will take 18 months to complete. The project has been shrouded in secrecy with no official confirmation from the Egyptian government, but it is understood that the design is commissioned by US army engineers, at the behest of Israel, Ann Wright surmises.

The ‘impenetrable’ barrier is made of super-strength steel manufactured in the US, according to the BBC. It will likely not succeed in halting all smuggling but will force Palestinians to dig deeper.

Conditions are worsening in this nightmare siege. The Israeli regime has prevented EU officials from entering the besieged strip, Gaza’s water is contaminated and creating a public health disaster and the israeli blockade that prevents vital reconstruction continues unabated.

This is a new low in the levels of inhumanity, absurdity and wretchedness to which the Israeli regime, with active Egyptian and US ZOG complicity, are subjecting the beleaguered Palestinians of Gaza.  Only a just political resolution will put an end to the tunnels.

On a note of black humour, Gilad Atzmon wrote a great satirical piece a few years ago, Operation Security Roof which is relevant here.

Retired US Army Reserve Colonel and former diplomat Ann Wright rightly castigates this development and calls it a laughing stock:

Just as the steel walls of the US Army Corps of Engineers at the base of the levees of New Orleans were unable to contain Hurricane Katrina, the US Army Corps of Engineers’ underground steel walls that will attempt to build an underground cage of Gaza will not be able to contain the survival spirit of the people of Gaza.

America’s super technology will again be laughed at by the world, as young men dedicated to the survival of their people, will again outwit technology by digging deeper, and most likely penetrating the “impenetrable” in some novel, simple, low-tech way.

See also:

December 10, 2009 Posted by | "Hope and Change", Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Illegal Occupation, Subjugation - Torture | 1 Comment

Hockey stick observed in NOAA ice core data

December 9, 2009

At the Foresight Institute, J. Storrs Hall had some interesting graphs made from NOAA ice core data (Alley, R.B. 2000. The Younger Dryas cold interval as viewed from central Greenland. Quaternary Science Reviews 19:213-226.) It sure seems to mirror other hockey sticks this past century. Dr. Mann will be thrilled to see this I’m sure.

J. Storrs Hall writes:

One thing that Climategate does is give us an opportunity to step back from the details of the AGW argument and say, maybe this is heat-of-the-moment stuff, and in the long run will look as silly as the Durants’ allergy to Eisenhower. And perhaps, if we can put climate arguments in perspective, it will allow us to put the much smaller nano arguments (pun intended) into perspective too.

So let’s look at some ice.

I’m looking at the temperature record as read from this central Greenland ice core. It gives us about as close as we can come to a direct, experimental measurement of temperature at that one spot for the past 50,000 years.  As far as I know, the data are not adjusted according to any fancy computer climate model or anything else like that.

So what does it tell us about, say, the past 500 years? (the youngest datum is age=0.0951409 (thousand years before present) — perhaps younger snow doesn’t work so well?):

histo6

Well, whaddaya know — a hockey stick.  In fact, the “blade” continues up in the 20th century at least another half a degree.  But how long is the handle? How unprecedented is the current warming trend?

Some Historical Perspective

histo5

Yes, Virginia, there was a Medieval Warm Period, in central Greenland at any rate.  But we knew that — that’s when the Vikings were naming it Greenland, after all.  And the following Little Ice Age is what killed them off, and caused widespread crop failures (and the consequent burning of witches) across Europe.  But was the MWP itself unusual?

histo4

Well, no — over the period of recorded history, the average temperature was about equal to the height of the MWP.  Rises not only as high, but as rapid, as the current hockey stick blade have been the rule, not the exception.

histo3

In fact for the entire Holocene — the period over which, by some odd coincidence, humanity developed agriculture and civilization — the temperature has been higher than now, and the trend over the past 4000 years is a marked decline.  From this perspective, it’s the LIA that was unusual, and the current warming trend simply represents a return to the mean.  If it lasts.

histo2

From the perspective of the Holocene as a whole, our current hockeystick is beginning to look pretty dinky. By far the possibility I would worry about, if I were the worrying sort, would be the return to an ice age — since interglacials, over the past half million years or so, have tended to last only 10,000 years or so.  And Ice ages are not conducive to agriculture.

histo1

… and ice ages have a better claim on being the natural state of Earth’s climate than interglacials.  This next graph, for the longest period, we have to go to an Antarctic core (Vostok):

vostok

In other words, we’re pretty lucky to be here during this rare, warm period in climate history.  But the broader lesson is, climate doesn’t stand still.  It doesn’t even stay on the relatively constrained range of the last 10,000 years for more than about 10,000 years at a time.

Does this mean that CO2 isn’t a greenhouse gas? No.

Does it mean that it isn’t warming? No.

Does it mean that we shouldn’t develop clean, efficient technology that gets its energy elsewhere than burning fossil fuels?  Of course not.  We should do all those things for many reasons — but there’s plenty of time to do them the right way, by developing nanotech.  (There’s plenty of money, too, but it’s all going to climate science at the moment. :-) ) And that will be a very good thing to have done if we do fall back into an ice age, believe me.

For climate science it means that the Hockey Team climatologists’ insistence that human-emitted CO2 is the only thing that could account for the recent warming trend is probably poppycock.

Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science | Leave a comment

Sound familiar? US refuses to allow UN inspectors to investigate its WMDs

By Agence France-Presse
December 9th, 2009

The United States said Wednesday that it remained opposed to international inspections of biological weapon sites, even though it stressed its commitment to a UN treaty covering such arms and invaded Iraq in part over its alleged stalling of — UN weapons inspectors.

“When it comes to the proliferation of bio weapons and the risk of an attack, the world community faces a greater threat,” Ellen Tauscher, US Under Secretary of State on arms control and international security told state members of the Biological Weapons Convention.

“While the United States remains concerned about state-sponsored biological warfare and proliferation, we are equally, if not more concerned, about an act of bioterrorism, due to the increased access to advances in the life sciences,” she added, stressing the importance of bolstering the treaty.

However, the new US administration is still against an additional protocol that would authorize international inspections of biological weapons sites.

“The Obama Administration will not seek to revive negotiations on a verification protocol to the Convention,” said Tauscher.

“We have carefully reviewed previous efforts to develop a verification protocol and have determined that a legally binding protocol would not achieve meaningful verification or greater security,” she added.

At BWC talks in 2001, the Bush administration scuttled negotiations for such a protocol, saying that intrusive checks could compromise US security and trade secrets.

Outlining the new US administration’s strategy on the issue, Tauscher said Washington believed that compliance to the treaty could be encouraged through “enhanced transparency… and pursuing compliance diplomacy to address concerns.”

The 1972 Biological Weapons Convention, signed by 163 countries, bans the development, production and reserves of biological weapons.

Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | "Hope and Change", Militarism, War Crimes | 1 Comment

What is to blame for the stalled peace talks?

by Adam Horowitz on December 10, 2009

Israeli officials blame a Palestinian Authority diplomatic campaign orchestrated “to coerce Israel into accepting statehood.”

The US State Department blames the Goldstone report.

Meanwhile:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will seek cabinet approval on Sunday for a new map of national priority zones that will grant 110,000 settlers – most of whom live outside the major settlement blocs – the economic benefits conferred on residents of these zones. . .

Designation as a national priority zone entitles a town to additional state funding, which can be spent on programs ranging from professional retraining courses to extra classroom hours and cultural activities. Netanyahu’s proposal allots a budget of about NIS 1,000 per person for these benefits, meaning his government will be earmarking an additional NIS 110 million for the settlements.

The proposal the cabinet will be asked to approve on Sunday states that its main purpose is “to encourage population dispersal in the State of Israel and increase the population of the periphery and of areas near the border.” Another goal is to “preserve and bolster Israel’s national security stamina.”

Some settlement freeze. The best comment on the proposed new “priority zones” comes from Israeli Knesset member and National Union Party member Michael Ben-Ari:

“The message from here is very clear. . .The Jews have been exiled enough. If there is a people that has to be evacuated and should not be here, it is not the Jewish people.”

Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | Leave a comment

Israeli forces mass arrest Palestinian activists

Press release, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, 10 December 2009

Occupation military forces raided several towns, villages and camps in the Nablus area on 9 December 2009, engaging in a mass arrest campaign targeting alleged members and supporters of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), two days before the 42nd anniversary of the Front will be commemorated with large marches and activities throughout Palestine.

PFLP sources noted that the occupation military have ramped up their targeting of the PFLP at a time when their ongoing negotiations with the Palestinian resistance to release prisoners in exchange for captured occupation soldier Gilad Shalit have focused on the release of imprisoned PFLP General Secretary, Comrade Ahmad Saadat.

Maysar Itiani, 45, a human rights activist and advocate for Palestinian prisoners, was kidnapped from Rafidia, west of Nablus, as was her brother Abdel-Nasser Itiani, 38, after the army broke into their homes.

Those kidnapped by the occupation forces, alleged to be supporters of the Front, include Musa Salama, 47, and Wael Abu Al-Sabe, 45, both from al-Jabal al-Shimaly, north of Nablus. The army also kidnapped Ziad al-Salous, who works in the office of Comrade Abdel-Rahim Mallouh, Deputy General Secretary of the PFLP, as he tried to cross Huwarra checkpoint, returning to Nablus from Ramallah.

The occupation forces also invaded al-Ein refugee camp in Nablus and kidnapped a number of young men, labeled supporters of the Front, including Khalid Suleiman, Mohammad Dahbour, Yousef Rajab and Rabie Abu Khalifa, and three teenagers, Rabie Abu Mounir, 16, Saeed Abu Namous, 16, and Mahmoud Teem, 17.

In Awarta, south of Nablus, Nabih Awwad, 47, described as a supporter of the Front who works for the local council, was kidnapped by Israeli soldiers after breaking into his home at 2:00am.

Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | Leave a comment

Israel’s Notorious Hannibal Procedure

Army Directive Behind Shooting of Mental Patient

By JONATHAN COOK
December 10, 2009 – Narazeth

The fatal shooting by Israeli soldiers of an Israeli man earlier this week as he tried to scale a fence into the Gaza Strip was reportedly part of a drastic procedure the army was supposed to have phased out several years ago.

The Israeli media reported that Yakir Ben-Melech, 34, had bled to death after he was shot under the “Hannibal procedure”, designed to prevent Israelis from being taken captive alive by enemy forces.

One critic, Uri Avnery, a former Israeli legislator and leader of Gush Shalom, a small radical peace group, defined the procedure as meaning: “Liberate the soldier by killing him”.

The controversial directive, which was once one of the army’s best-kept secrets, was drafted more than 20 years ago after the Israeli government had come under domestic pressure to release hundreds of enemy prisoners for the return of three captured soldiers.

Israel is currently involved in just such negotiations over Gilad Shalit, a soldier who has been held prisoner in Gaza by Hamas for more than three years. According to reports, he may be freed in the near future in a deal expected to see several hundred Palestinians released from Israeli prisons.

Israel was supposed to have stopped the Hannibal procedure after it withdrew its occupying army from south Lebanon in May 2000.

However, there is strong evidence that it has continued to be used, particularly during the events that triggered Israel’s attack on Lebanon in the summer of 2006 and again last year during Israel’s assault on Gaza.

Ben-Melech, a patient at a mental health clinic in nearby Ashkelon, tried to enter Gaza in the early hours of Monday in what his family believe was a bid to save Sgt Shalit. The army says guards fired several warning shots as he ran towards Gaza before shooting him in the leg.

Several Israeli military correspondents, apparently briefed by the army, reported that the Hannibal procedure had been invoked in Ben-Melech’s case.

The use of the procedure was also confirmed by Zvika Fogel, a former deputy head of the army’s Southern Command, an area including Gaza. He told the Reshet B radio station: “The Hannibal procedure is definitely the right procedure. We cannot afford now some soulmate next to Gilad Shalit.”

However, in an apparent sign of continuing sensitivities on the issue, English-language editions of Israeli newspapers did not mention the procedure. The Jerusalem Post, Israel’s only major newspaper produced in English, excised a reference to the procedure included in an early report on its website, and the army’s spokesman avoided answering questions about whether the procedure had been used in Ben-Melech’s shooting.

Later explanations from the army focused instead on the threat Ben-Melech supposedly posed. One official told Ynet, Israel’s largest news website: “The [border] guards had no way of knowing who he was and feared that his attempted infiltration was part of a larger-scale terror attack.”

Ben-Melech’s sister-in-law, Ilanit, responded that the army’s account made no sense. “He ran in the direction of Gaza, not the soldiers, so why did they shoot him?”

The Hannibal procedure only came to light accidentally in 2003 after a slip-up by the country’s military censor allowed a reference to remain in a report published by the daily Haaretz.

In a follow-up article, the newspaper revealed that the directive had been formulated in 1986 in the wake of a deal in which Israel had released more than 1,100 Palestinians for three Israelis. Gabi Ashkenazi, the current chief of staff, was among those who drafted the procedure.

The order, described as the most controversial in the Israeli army’s history, was that “a dead soldier is better than a captive soldier”, according to Haaretz. The directive reportedly created a furore in the army at the time, with some commanders and rabbis considering it immoral, though no mention of it was made public for many years.

It was last used officially in October 2000, five months after Israeli forces withdrew from south Lebanon, when Hizbollah captured three soldiers along the border. Attack helicopters fired on a vehicle in which it was believed the soldiers were being held.

The soldiers’ bodies were returned by Hizbollah, along with a captured Israeli businessman, four years later in a deal that included the release of 400 Palestinians and 35 Arab nationals.

The procedure, according to Haaretz, was revoked in 2002, although several soldiers told the paper that they had been told to follow it despite its official annulment.

There have been a number of indications, in addition to the shooting of Ben-Melech, that the procedure is still in force.

It appears to have been invoked after Hizbollah captured two Israeli soldiers on the Lebanese border in summer 2006, an incident that triggered a month-long attack by Israel on Lebanon.

Eitan Baron wrote in a blog that his brother Yaniv, a 19-year-old tank driver, had been sent in hot pursuit of the Hizbollah team holding the two soldiers on a Hannibal procedure mission.

Yaniv Baron and four other crew members died when the tank ran over a mine and was then fired on by Hizbollah in what was widely assumed to be an ambush.

According to Mr Baron, Yaniv’s battalion commander told the family after his death that the procedure had been invoked. “They [the tank crew] were familiar with the procedure, and without giving it a second thought, started driving,” Mr Baron wrote.

Further revelations about the procedure emerged last January, during Operation Cast Lead, when the Israeli media reported that Israeli soldiers being sent into Gaza had been told to avoid capture at all costs.

Channel 10, a television station, quoted an officer from Battalion 501 of the Golani Brigade saying: “No troop member from the 501 battalion is to be kidnapped at any cost, nor in any situation, even if this means blowing up a grenade in his possession, killing himself and those trying to kidnap him.”

An officer from the Givati Brigades was also quoted, citing the Hannibal procedure, adding: “We will not have two Gilad Shalits at any price.”

During Operation Cast Lead, Hamas claimed that it had captured soldiers on two occasions but that the Israeli army had killed the Hamas fighters and soldiers in aerial attacks. Three Israeli soldiers were reported to have died in friendly-fire incidents.

A number of Palestinians, including children, have been shot by the Israeli army after getting close to the perimeter fence that surrounds Gaza. Last year Israel announced that it would shoot any Palestinian who entered a zone extending several hundred meters inside the fence.

Jonathan Cook is a writer and journalist based in Nazareth, Israel. His website is http://www.jkcook.net. A version of this article originally appeared in The National (www.thenational.ae) Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | Militarism | Leave a comment

Himalayan Glaciers Not Disappearing

By Doug L. Hoffman – 11/13/2009 – Excerpt

A new report by a senior Indian glaciologist states that Himalayan glaciers remain frozen and quite intact.

The report by Vijay Kumar Raina, formerly of the Geological Survey of India, seeks to correct widely spread reports that India’s 10,000 or so Himalayan glaciers are shrinking rapidly in response to climate change. It’s not true, Raina says. The rumors may have originated in the Asia chapter of the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC’s) 2007 Working Group II report, which claims that Himalayan glaciers “are receding faster than in any other part of the world and, if the present rate continues, the likelihood of them disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high if the Earth keeps warming at the current rate.” Evidently, the bogus reporting was based on measurements from only a handful of glaciers.

Raina’s report draws on published studies and unpublished findings from half a dozen Indian groups who have analyzed remote-sensing satellite data or conducted on-site surveys at remote locations often higher than 5000 meters. While the report surveyed a number of glaciers, two particularly iconic ones stand out. The first is the 30-kilometer-long Gangotri glacier, source of the Ganges River. Between 1934 and 2003, the glacier retreated an average of 70 feet (22 meters) a year and shed a total of 5% of its length. But in 2004 and 2005, the retreat slowed to about 12 meters a year, and since September 2007 Gangotri has been “practically at a standstill,” according to Raina’s report.


Gangotri glacier, source of the Ganges River, retreated a few dozen meters from 2004 to 2008.
Photos provided by V. K. Raina.

The second glacier, the Siachin glacier in Kashmir, is even more stable. Claims reported in the popular press that Siachin has shrunk as much as 50% are simply wrong, says Raina, whose report notes that the glacier has “not shown any remarkable retreat in the last 50 years.” These conclusions were based in part on field measurements by ecologist Kireet Kumar of the G. B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development in Almora. Much like the hysteria about Greenland’s ice cap, it seems reports of the glaciers’ demise are a bit premature.

According to a report in the journal Science, “several Western experts who have conducted studies in the region agree with Raina’s nuanced analysis—even if it clashes with IPCC’s take on the Himalayas.” The “extremely provocative” findings “are consistent with what I have learned independently,” says Jeffrey S. Kargel, a glaciologist at the University of Arizona, Tucson. Many glaciers in the Karakoram Mountains, on the border of India and Pakistan, have “stabilized or undergone an aggressive advance,” he says, citing new evidence gathered by a team led by Michael Bishop, a mountain geomorphologist at the University of Nebraska.

Having recently returned from an expedition to K2, one of the highest peaks in the world, Canadian glaciologist Kenneth Hewitt says he observed five advancing glaciers and only a single one in retreat. Such evidence “challenges the view that the upper Indus glaciers are ‘disappearing’ quickly and will be gone in 30 years,” said Hewitt. “There is no evidence to support this view and, indeed, rates of retreat have been less in the past 30 years than the previous 60 years.”

Other researchers and noted experts have raised their voices in support of Raina’s conclusions. According to Himalayan glacier specialist John “Jack” Shroder, the only possible conclusion is that IPCC’s Himalaya assessment got it “horribly wrong.” The University of Nebraska researcher adds, “They were too quick to jump to conclusions on too little data.”


Looks like the Himalayas stay frozen. Photo UNEP.

The IPCC also erred in its forecast of the impact of glacier melting on water supply, claims Donald Alford, a Montana-based hydrologist who recently completed a water study for the World Bank. One of the dire predictions that the IPCC report made was for water shortages in the region. “Our data indicate the Ganges results primarily from monsoon rainfall, and until the monsoon fails completely, there will be a Ganges river, very similar to the present river.” Glacier melt contributes only 3% to 4% of the Ganges’s annual flow, says Kireet Kumar. Another piece of climate catastrophist propaganda debunked.

Even when faced with data showing the errors in their work, the IPCC seems incapable of admitting they were wrong. Typically, Murari Lal, chair of the Climate, Energy and Sustainable Development Analysis Centre in New Delhi and coordinating lead author of the 2007 IPCC report’s Asia chapter, rejects the notion that IPCC was off the mark on Himalayan glaciers. Even more petulantly, IPCC chairman Rajendra Pachauri accused the Indian environment ministry of “arrogance” for its report claiming there is no evidence that climate change has shrunk the Himalayan glaciers. Unfortunately for the climate change alarmists the truth is out, the glaciers of the Himalayas remain safely frozen and won’t be disappearing anytime soon.

Source

December 10, 2009 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | Leave a comment

Progressives Still Love Obama

By Margaret Kimberley
December 9, 2009

Most Americans, regardless of political party affiliation, believe in the right of the state to control their lives and those of people around the globe. It is a sad commentary that such retrograde ways of thinking persist in the 21st century and it is especially sad when so-called progressives care as little about the rights of their fellow human beings as do conservatives. Those beliefs have been on truly terrifying display ever since President Barack Obama announced his plan to escalate war against the people of Afghanistan.

President Barack Obama appeared on national television a la George W. Bush, and mouthed Bushisms almost word for word. He claimed that America doesn’t want an empire when it keeps expanding the one it already has. He claimed that it is in the “vital interests” of the entire country to maintain the cycle of endless warfare. Before an audience of West Point cadets, a Bushesque backdrop par excellence, he told the world he planned to send an additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan and accelerate the killing.

Liberals and progressives responded to the president’s speech the same way they respond to every other Obama policy decision. Most went along or made excuses for him. They made no attempt to analyze in any serious way or to question the premises upon which American foreign policy decisions are made. They may have expressed some small misgiving about the number of troops or the timetable for the killing to last, but very few have said that this escalation is wrong or that Obama should be opposed.

Like their countrymen, liberals believe in the inherent goodness and superiority of their nation and its government, a belief with absolutely no basis in historical or current reality. No people on earth have ever benefited from American interventions and Afghans are no exception. They have been killed in drone attacks and by bombings. The heroin trade flourishes far more than it ever did before the American occupation. Just as with the equally unlucky Iraqis, Afghans would send the United States packing if they could.

Former Obama supporters such as Tom Hayden and Michael Moore have rightly condemned the president’s plan and been met with scorn and ridicule. Both men are in a peculiar situation. They should be commended for their opposition to occupation, but their specious reasoning for supporting Obama in the first place should not be forgotten, and their still strong support for a corrupted Democratic Party should not be ignored. Moore’s exhortation to Obama doesn’t deserve the withering criticism it has received because it was frankly rather sad. “When we elected you we didn’t expect miracles. We didn’t even expect much change. But we expected some.” Moore lowered his expectations and Obama met them.

While Black Agenda Report and others engaged in critical analysis of the Obama campaign and made the case for true movement politics, Moore and Hayden assisted Barack Obama in lying about his intentions and motives. They were not merely naïve, they chose to spread the noxious doctrines of empire and occupation openly espoused by Obama and became willing partners to the policies they now oppose.

Black Agenda Report explained it all while Obama was still a candidate:
“Is Obama a liar? Of course he is. As a gifted orator, a superb word-smith, Obama’s slickness is purposeful – he means to fool people! However, so did many of the progressives that supported Obama, knowing perfectly well that his carefully chosen words were designed to hide more than they revealed. Such progressives lent their reputations to discourage criticism of Obama from other Leftists, or from the ‘expectant’ rank and file. Therefore, they are guilty of offenses against truth.” – BAR, July 8, 2008.

Tom Hayden remains irrelevant even as he attempts to throw off some of his shackles. Hayden still maintains a belief in the inherent goodness of Barack Obama and his intentions despite the lack of any justification for such loyalty. “This is not like the previous conflict with Bush and Cheney, who were easy to ridicule. Now this orphan of a war has a persuasive advocate, a formidable debater who will be arguing for support from the liberal center–one who wants to win back his Democratic base.”

If an abhorrent policy is well articulated by Hayden’s standards then apparently it is not so abhorrent after all. Why does Hayden ridicule Bush and Cheney but not the man who continues their policies? Where on earth does he get the idea that Obama is in any way interested in the Democratic Party’s base of supporters? Hayden and his ilk are far too easily impressed and even in opposition mode prove themselves to be utterly useless. “To be clear: I’ll support Obama down the road against Sarah Palin, Lou Dobbs or any of the pitchfork carriers for the pre-Obama era.” After giving sound reasons for opposing the Afghanistan policy, Hayden then proceeds to say that he will support Obama if Republicans keep saying mean things about him. He would be a lot happier now if he had supported a true peace candidate like Cynthia McKinney in the 2008 election.

While some liberals managed faint praise because the president promised the war would not be open ended, his cabinet and the military have been contradicting what the Obamaites claim to have heard their dear leader say.

Gen. David Petraeus: “There’s no timeline, no ramp, nothing like that.”
National Security Adviser James Jones: “It is not a cliff. It is a glide slope. And so certainly, the president has also said we are not leaving Afghanistan.”

Defense Secretary Robert Gates: “Well, first of all, I don’t consider this an exit strategy. And I try to avoid using that term. I think this is a transition.”

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: “We’re not talking about an exit strategy or a drop dead deadline.”
Not that the words from the horses’ mouths will matter very much. Moore and Hayden will still sing the president’s praises and Afghans and Americans will keep dying. There are still Progressives for Obama, and the world is much worse off as a result.

Margaret Kimberley’s Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgandaReport.com.

December 10, 2009 Posted by | "Hope and Change", Militarism | Leave a comment

   

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