Tuesday, February 17, 2009


This video is of a Democrat lady back in 2000 who had just learned that George Bush had beaten Al Gore in the presidential election -- just kidding. Actually, it's video of a woman who arrived at the departure gate at Hong Kong International airport too late to board her plane for San Francisco. She appears to be someone who's very much used to having her way.

At any rate, she was put on a flight a couple of hours later and, I understand, made all of her fellow passengers totally miserable the whole way to San Francisco.


Israeli Covert Ops

Last December President Bush refused to give Israel the go-ahead for an attack on Iran's nuclear bomb-making facilities, opting instead for vague "destabilizing" covert activities. This report in the Telegraph is a little more specific as to what those covert activities entail. Here's the gist:

Israel has launched a covert war against Iran as an alternative to direct military strikes against Tehran's nuclear programme, US intelligence sources have revealed. It is using hitmen, sabotage, front companies and double agents to disrupt the regime's illicit weapons project, the experts say.

The most dramatic element of the "decapitation" programme is the planned assassination of top figures involved in Iran's atomic operations.

Reva Bhalla, a senior analyst with Stratfor, the US private intelligence company with strong government security connections, said the strategy was to take out key people. "With co-operation from the United States, Israeli covert operations have focused both on eliminating key human assets involved in the nuclear programme and in sabotaging the Iranian nuclear supply chain," she said.

Israel has also used front companies to infiltrate the Iranian purchasing network that the clerical regime uses to circumvent United Nations sanctions and obtain so-called "dual use" items - metals, valves, electronics, machinery - for its nuclear programme. The businesses initially supply Iran with legitimate material, winning Tehran's trust, and then start to deliver faulty or defective items that "poison" the country's atomic activities.

Well, now. This poses some interesting ethical questions. Let's assume that the Israelis could be successful in retarding the Iranian weapons program until some future date when the government collapses due to, say, low oil prices. Suppose further that the only realistic alternatives to the Israeli covert ops are a) we allow Iran to procure nuclear weapons, or b) we, and/or Israel, bomb Iran and risk a lot of carnage and a much wider war. Given those two suppositions, what are the moral objections, if any, to doing what the Israelis are doing? Take your time thinking it over.


Killing Her Softly

Muzzammil Hassan resides in Orchard Park near Buffalo, NY, and is the founder and chief executive officer of Bridges TV, which he launched in 2004, amid hopes that its programming would help boost the image of Muslims in the eyes of Americans.

He was arrested the other night for having murdered his wife...by beheading her.

That's probably not going to help his cause of portraying Muslims in a positive manner much, at least with anyone other than wife-beaters and misogynists.

But before you think poorly of Muslims let me remind you that there are many moderate Muslims out there who don't behead their wives and who are doubtless appalled at what Hassan did. After all, there are other ways of killing one's wife without resorting to such grisly means as this.

It's not the Hassans of the world who should shape our opinion of Muslims, but rather the millions of moderates who would be satisfied with just giving their wives a good beating or, if need be, murdering her more gently, to whom we should turn to gain a better understanding of Islamic culture.

By the way, Kaled Hosseini's most recent book A Thousand Splendid Suns offers the reader some disturbing insights into that culture. It's not quite as riveting as The Kite Runner, but it's still a very good read.