Tuesday, August 14, 2007

An Iraqi's Thoughts

Michael J. Totten has a fascinating interview with an Iraqi interpreter. It's must reading for anyone who wishes to understand the problems of Iraq.


Pakistan's Terror Camps

Bill Roggio brings us grim news from Waziristan in Pakistan. The Taliban and al Qaida have emptied their camps in Wazaristan, having gotten wind from sympathizers in the Islamabad government that U.S. intelligence knew where they were, and now no one knows where they've gone or what they're up to.

One fear is that they know that a major attack is planned against the United States and they've fled to avoid certain reprisal. Another is that these cadres are preparing to mount a major offensive against Pervez Musharraf's military in hopes of toppling Musharraf and capturing his nuclear weapons.

Our question is if we knew where these camps - 29 of them - were, why didn't we hit them a long time ago? How serious can George Bush be about fighting the WOT if he's leaving it to Musharraf to deal with these killers?


A Free Man's Worship

We have been nothing if not persistent here at Viewpoint trying to make the case that if atheism is true human existence is an empty, pointless exercise in absurdity. But let's let an atheist speak for himself on the subject. Here's one of the most famous philosophers of the 20th century, Bertrand Russell, writing on A Free Man's Worship:

"Such in outline, but even more purposeless, more void of meaning, is the world which Science presents for our belief. Amid such a world, if anywhere, our ideals henceforward must find a home. That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labours of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man's achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the d�bris of a universe in ruins-all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul's habitation henceforth be safely built."

From Mysticism and Logic, Chapter 3, of "A Free Man's Worship" (1929)

HT: Denyse O'Leary

As for us we find it a little difficult to engage in a "worship" the logical consequence of which is despair and nihilism. This is hardly a view of life that a "free man" can rejoice in. Russell and his anti-theistic successors chain themselves to a worldview that oppresses and robs its votaries not only of meaning, but of hope. It's a worldview that makes suicide a logical, understandable way out. Some freedom that is.