Monday, January 31, 2005
I just finished my phone call to my Father in Baghdad, Iraq. He voted, my 84-year-old Grandmother voted, my uncles and aunties voted, my cousins voted. They were elated, happy, energized, empowered and grateful.
To all the men and women who have served and serving in Iraq, to all the families of those who have paid the ultimate price to all those who have suffered during their service in Iraq, my family’s and my deepest thanks, gratitude and pride both from the U.S. and Iraq for all the sacrifices, endurance and service for our great country and Iraq and the Iraqis. God bless all of you and keep you safe.
God bless this great country of ours, and God bless our leadership who have the courage to free oppressed people in our times.
Haider Ajina in PowerLine
Regardless of what happens tomorrow or the next day, or the day after that, today, the insurgents lost.
[Tonight], the bombs[,] the mortars and the gunshots which still echo in the streets sound different.
Men and women, whose children, mothers[,] fathers, sisters and brothers have been murdered by madmen took a few simple, but very difficult steps, out of their homes and into polling stations.
There will be debates about turnout and legitimacy and occupation and every other conceivable thing, but everyone who is here right now, knows something
extraordinary happened today.
Today, the insurgents lost.
I am not comfortable about politicising this process, but considering that every single negative element of the war has been pinned on the Commander in Chief, I think it would be unfair if this day was not credited to the same man.
Look at the pictures below and ask yourself would this have taken place if:
- Al Gore had won Florida?
- Michael Moore and his cronies managed to pursuade the public to withdraw support from Operation Iraqi Freedom
- Iraqis were left to UN and European inaction and indecision
Like or hate him, Bush is a man of his words. He believes in a concept and then puts it into action. Something that cannot be said about many of his political opponents.
All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: theToday, these words ring true!
will not ignore your oppression, or excuse your oppressors. When you stand for your liberty, we will stand with you. United States
President Bush in his inauguration speech
Thursday, January 27, 2005
But look at how my colleagues at The Spectator chose to mark the anniversary. They ran a reminiscence by Anthony Lipmann, the Anglican son of an Auschwitz survivor, which contained the following sentence: "When on 27 January I take my mother's arm - tattoo number A-25466 - I will think not just of the crematoria and the cattle trucks but of Darfur, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Jenin, Fallujah."
Jenin? Would that be the notorious 2002 "Jenin massacre"? There was no such thing, as I pointed out in this space at the time, when Robert Fisk and the rest of Fleet Street's gullible sob-sisters were going around weepin' an' a-wailin' about Palestinian mass graves and Israeli war crimes. Twenty-three Israelis were killed in fighting at the Jenin camp. Fifty-two Palestinians died, according to the Israelis. According to Arafat's official investigators, it was 56 Palestinians. Even if one accepts the higher figure, that means every single deceased Palestinian could have his own mass grave and there'd still be room to inter the collected works of Robert Fisk. Yet, despite the fact that the Jenin massacre is an obvious hallucination of Fleet Street's Palestine groupies, its rise to historical fact is unstoppable. To Lipmann, those 52-56 dead Palestinians weigh in the scales of history as heavy as six million Jews. And what's Fallujah doing bringing up the rear in his catalogue of horrors? In rounding up a few hundred head-hackers, the Yanks perpetrated another Auschwitz? These comparisons are so absurd as to barely qualify as "moral equivalence".
Mark Steyn in The Telegraph
Tuesday, January 25, 2005
Left to Right: Yulia - Incoming Ukrainian PM ; Orange Revolution; President Yushchenko
I have become the President of Ukraine by the free will of the Ukrainian people. Today I want to speak to you face to face. Today I have the honor of speaking to free people who hold in their hands the destiny of their nation.
Yushchenko's Inaugural Address
For more info, visit Orange Ukraine and Ultima Thule
Monday, January 24, 2005
Young Iraqi man get treated in Israel from a heart disease."
...a young Iraqi from Kirkuk had a successful heart surgery in a hospital in Petah Tikva. The family of the young man said that they could not afford the expenses of the surgery and so went to a humanitarian aid that arranged for their son to be transferred and treated in Israel for free.
"I never believed that I'd visit Israel one day" said the young man, "I'll tell everyone in my town about the goodness of the people of Israel. I have no more words but to thank the Israeli doctors"
Hat Tip: iraqilibe.blogspot.com (An interesting blog by a liberated Iraqi)
Friday, January 21, 2005
President George W. Bush's Inaugural Address
For a half century,
We have seen our vulnerability - and we have seen its deepest source. For as long as whole regions of the world simmer in resentment and tyranny - prone to ideologies that feed hatred and excuse murder - violence will gather, and multiply in destructive power, and cross the most defended borders, and raise a mortal threat. There is only one force of history that can break the reign of hatred and resentment, and expose the pretensions of tyrants, and reward the hopes of the decent and tolerant, and that is the force of human freedom.
We are led, by events and common sense, to one conclusion: The survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands. The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world.
So it is the policy of the
This is not primarily the task of arms, though we will defend ourselves and our friends by force of arms when necessary. Freedom, by its nature, must be chosen, and defended by citizens, and sustained by the rule of law and the protection of minorities. And when the soul of a nation finally speaks, the institutions that arise may reflect customs and traditions very different from our own.
…We will persistently clarify the choice before every ruler and every nation: The moral choice between oppression, which is always wrong, and freedom, which is eternally right.
…In the long run, there is no justice without freedom, and there can be no human rights without human liberty.
…Eventually, the call of freedom comes to every mind and every soul. We do not accept the existence of permanent tyranny because we do not accept the possibility of permanent slavery.
All who live in tyranny and hopelessness can know: the
Democratic reformers facing repression, prison, or exile can know:
The rulers of outlaw regimes can know that we still believe as Abraham Lincoln did: "Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves; and, under the rule of a just God, cannot long retain it."
…May God bless you, and may He watch over the
Tuesday, January 18, 2005
This week four Americans were murdered for expressing a view that was seen as insulting to Islam. This is not the first murder in the West on these grounds. Theo Van Gogh (yes... he is related to Vinnie) was murdered in Holland on November 2 2004 on similar grounds and many more, even here in Australia, fear to speak out lest they meet the same fate. The silencing of the lambs is a reality even in the liberated West.
January 16, 2005 -- The father of a murdered New Jersey family was threatened for making anti-Muslim remarks online — and the gruesome quadruple slaying may have been the hateful retaliation, sources told The Post yesterday.
Hossam Armanious, 47, who along with his wife and two daughters was found stabbed to death in his Jersey City home early Friday, would regularly debate religion in a Middle Eastern chat room, one source said.
Armanious, an Egyptian Christian, was well known for expressing his Coptic beliefs and engaging in fiery back-and-forth with Muslims on the Web site paltalk.com.
He "had the reputation for being one of the most outspoken Egyptian Christians," said the source, who had close ties to the family.
The source, who had knowledge of the investigation, refused to specify the anti-Muslim statement. But he said cops told him they were looking into the exchanges as a possible motive.
The married father of two had recently been threatened by Muslim members of the Web site, said a fellow Copt and store clerk who uses the chat room.
"You'd better stop this bull---- or we are going to track you down like a chicken and kill you," was the threat, said the clerk, who was online at the time and saw the exchange.
But Armanious refused to back down, according to two sources who use the Web site.
Jersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy would neither confirm nor deny that cops and prosecutors were looking into the religion motive, saying only that "nothing is being ruled out." But a relative of the mayor who answered the phone at Healy's home said there was information the murders were "religion-related."
"There are several theories we are looking into, but we are not commenting on any of them at this time," said Hudson County Assistant Prosecutor Guy Gregory.
Armanious' fervor apparently rubbed off on his daughter, Sylvia — who would have turned 16 yesterday.
"She was very religious and very opinionated," said Jessica Cimino, 15, a fellow sophomore at Dickenson HS.
A family member who viewed photos of the bloodbath said Sylvia seemed to have taken the most savage punishment.
"When we saw the pictures, you could tell that they were hurt really, really bad in the face; especially Sylvia," said Milad Garas, the high-school sophomore's great-uncle.
The heartless killer not only slit Sylvia's throat, but also sliced a huge gash in her chest and stabbed her in the wrist, where she had a tattoo of a Coptic cross.
Also found murdered were the wife, Amal Garas, and the parents' other daughter, Monica.
Fred Ayed, the deacon at St. George and St. Shenouda Church, where the deeply religious family attended services, said he's worried that the murders could have a ripple effect.
"I am concerned for the safety of our community," said Ayed, who knew Hossam for 30 years. "People are scared because one family was slain like cows," said Moheb Ghabour, publisher of a local newspaper for the Coptic community.
Osama Hassan, director of the Islamic Center of Jersey City, described the relationship between Copts and Muslims as cooperative if not friendly.
"I think there might be people that can get into physical fights, but not to the point of murder," Hassan said.
Both the deacon and uncle poured cold water on the theory that the family were the victims of a robbery gone wrong.
"This is not a robbery, Ayed said. "We found all of the jewelry in the house. They didn't take anything."
The FBI confirmed it has been called in to help with the case.
Not to compare in any way, but this intimidation exists at all levels. See the posting in Islam Online regadring yours truly.
A TRAITOR AMONG US!
I just came across the posting of Neo Coneli who made anti-muslim statement on this site - and did research on him.
He is operator of site: http://spadeaspade.blogspot.com/
where he is very critical of muslims and supports the evil Bush and the Zionist state.
What makes it worse is that he is one of us. A muslim who moved from his home in the middle east and went to Australia where he now attacks us.
I ask you all to go to the site: http://spadeaspade.blogspot.com/
and add comments to the postings he has on.
We must not bow to intimidation. The lambs must not be silenced!
Friday, January 14, 2005
Is this the same way Sharon sparked the current Intifada by visiting the Temple Mount?!
For those of you who are not quite sure whether my sarcasm is valid, don't take my word for it. Take Imad Falouji's (Palestinian Authority Communications Minister) words on March 3, 2001:
Whoever thinks that this [war] started as a result of Sharon's despicable visit to Al Aksa is in error. It was planned since Arafat's return from Camp David [where he] firmly stood up to Clinton and rejected the U.S. terms.For more on this, read palestinefacts.org: What Started the Al Aksa Intifada?
(Note: if you believe congratulatory phone calls spark violence, you will probably remain unconvinced)
Thursday, January 13, 2005
"Yes, brothers, with our souls and blood we redeem you, O Palestine. This is the decision of the people with exceeding strength. This is a sacred bond. We are up to this duty. Allah is great! Glory to Allah and his prophet. Jihad, jihad, jihad, jihad, jihad!"
Yassar Arafat (Abu Amar) addressing Hebron Delegation, 2 January 2002
"The small jihad, which was the armed struggle, has ended, and now begins the large jihad, which will be the establishment of an independent Palestinian state and the building of our homeland."
Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) upon claiming victory in the Palestinian elections, 9 January 2005
Is this the maiden speech the world has been waiting to hear from a new leader of an emerging nation in a dawning era, or is it just the continuation of the same old rhetoric?!
For starters, one must establish what this ‘large jihad’ Abbas is calling for is. Even the most peaceful application of the word implies a struggle at some level (Read Daniel Pipes': What is Jihad?). Even if Abbas has good intentions, why is he giving cause to Israelis to doubt his sincerity?! There must be better ways of calling for peace...
The usual excuse that this is all part of the political game fails for the following reasons:
- That is what they said about Arafat.
- This was not a tight race for Abu Mazen, so he could have swung away from the fanatics and still have won in a landslide.
- Abu Mazen's action stands in stark contrast to his political counterpart, Ariel Sharon, who despite a narrow mandate has risked his government, his party and his life to push through a plan he believes will benefit peace.
I hope the new governments formed this week in Jerusalem and in Ramallah can bring about the much needed winds of change, but with the precedent set by Abbas over the past couple of weeks, my optimism may disappoint once again.
For more on Abbas' duplicitous election campaign, read Honest Reporting's: President Abbas - A New Age?
Tuesday, January 11, 2005
Mark Steyn: Coalition of the giving
10 January 2005
WE have Agence France Presse to thank for both the most striking headline and photograph of the tsunami devastation. The headline was "Tsunami Devastates DiCaprio", and for a moment I couldn't quite place the island: DiCaprio? One of the lesser known Maldives? Wasn't there an old Gracie Fields song – "'Twas on the isle DiCaprio that I found you?" Has Kofi Annan been flown over the devastated DiCaprio so he can marvel rhetorically: "Where have all the people gone?"
Well, they're his agent and hairdresser and they've gone to lunch. The devastated DiCaprio turned out to be Leonardo of that ilk, making a few observations on the catastrophe during a promotional visit to Rome. And in his own way he was indeed devastated. He's believed to have given $US1 million ($1.32 million) to disaster relief, as has Sandra Bullock. Michael Schumacher has given $US10 million.
For purposes of comparison, Herr Schumacher's donation is the same as that of oil-rich Kuwait. As for even oil-richer Iran, its Government has earmarked $US627,000 for disaster relief.
For purposes of further comparison, that's barely a twentieth of what was raised at the Sydney Opera House concert this weekend. Today's all-star cricket match between a World XI and an Asian XI at the MCG will do more for the beleaguered Muslims of Banda Aceh than Libya, Syria and Egypt combined.
In fairness to the Saudis, they've just upped their pledge to $US30 million. But for purposes of one final comparison, consider this: a single Saudi telethon in 2002 managed to raise $US56 million. That was for widows and orphans of Palestinian suicide bombers, those deceased as well as those yet to blow. It seems nothing gets the wealthy elite of Riyadh and Jeddah adding the zeroes to the cheques like self-detonating on an Israeli bus.
As for the most striking photograph of this disaster, it's by AFP's Jimin Lai. I haven't seen it in any of the papers, oddly enough. It shows a tsunami-devastated village in Galle on the southwestern coast of Sri Lanka: a couple of rescuers are carrying away a body while, behind them, smack dab in the centre of the picture, a young man looks on. He's wearing an Osama bin Laden T-shirt.
I gave up worrying "Why do they hate us?" on the evening of September 11, 2001. But, if I were that Osodden bin Loser guy watching the infidels truck in water, food, medical supplies and emergency clothing for villagers whose jihad-chic T-shirt collection was washed out to sea, I might ask myself a more pertinent question: "Why do they like us?"
The path of the tsunamis tracked the arc of the Muslim world, from Sumatra to Somalia; the most devastated country is the world's most populous Muslim nation, and the most devastated part of that country is the one province living under the strictures of sharia.
But, as usual, when disaster strikes it's the Great Satan and his various Little Satans who leap to respond. In the decade before September 11, the US military functioned, more or less exclusively, as a Muslim rapid reaction force – coming to the aid of Kuwaiti Muslims, Bosnian Muslims, Somali Muslims and Albanian Muslims. Since then, with the help of its Anglo-Australian allies, it's liberated 50 million Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq.
That's not how the West's anti-war movements see it. I found myself behind a car the other day bearing the bumper sticker, "War Is Costly. Peace Is Priceless" – which is standard progressive generic autopilot boilerplate, that somehow waging war and doing good are mutually exclusive. But you can't help noticing that when disaster strikes, it's the warmongers who are also the compassion-mongers. Of the top six donor nations to tsunami relief, four are members of George W. Bush's reviled "coalition of the willing".
What was it the Romans said? "If you seek peace, prepare for war." It's truer than they know. It's because Australia's prepared for war that it can do all the feelgood humanitarian stuff – such as landing 10 army engineers in Banda Aceh to attach a mobile filtration system to the decrepit mains pipes and thereby not merely restore the water supply but improve it.
But it goes beyond that, beyond even John Howard's spectacular billion-dollar pledge. Most citizens in the West look at the tsunami's victims and recognise our common humanity. When a chap is pulled down from a tree to survey the wreckage of his home and learn of the loss of his family, we see him first as our fellow man – a man in need. And if, afterwards, we happen to spot the sopping Osama T-shirt, we tactfully agree to overlook it – which is why I haven't seen that Sri Lankan AFP photo in any Western newspapers.
By contrast, Muslim leaders divide the world into the Dar al-Islam and everybody else. Yet the deaths of 100,000 members of the club in Banda Aceh alone isn't enough to catch the eye of the big shots in the Arab world. The Arab world's principal contribution these past two weeks has been the usual paranoia: "Was it caused by American, Israeli and Indian nuclear testing?" wondered Mahmoud Bakri in the Egyptian weekly Al Usbu. "The three most recent tests appeared to be genuine American and Israeli preparations to act together with India to test a way to liquidate humanity."
Colin Powell was foolish to suggest that, in its response to this crisis, the Muslim world would come to appreciate the true nature of the US. Fat chance. "It's OK that aid from the US is here," said Hilmy Bakar Almascaty, spokesman for the Islamic Defender Front. "But if they open bars, sell alcohol or open prostitution centres, then we will fight them." Almascaty also warned the Australian charity Youth Off the Streets that its plan to open homes for 35,000 Indonesian orphans was all very well, but on no account was it to try converting Muslim children. Jeez, man, would it kill you once in a while just to send a box of chocolates and a card saying "Thank you, you infidel sons of whores and pigs", and leave it at that?
But one day the smarter lads in the Osama T-shirts will begin to wonder what they're getting in return for their glorification of a multimillionaire whose followers these days spend most of their time killing Muslims – in Iraq, in Turkey, in Saudi Arabia, even in Indonesia. With friends like that, who needs tsunamis?
It shouldn't be necessary to point out the good deeds of Australia and its allies these past two weeks. But it is, because of the grand panjandrums of Western self-loathing. Peter Jennings, the smug Canadian who anchors America's ABC News (which is broadcast on Sky News Australia at 10.30am AEST), reported the other day that "in the oil-rich countries of the Persian Gulf, citizens are being urged to do more . . . Ironically, the controls on Muslim charities after 9/11 may be keeping contributions down."
Ah, yes. If it weren't for the US cracking down on Saudi money-laundering to terrorists, Sumatrans would be able to wallpaper their new homes with Arab cheques. Maybe it's time for the western self-loathers – Jennings, The Guardian, Melbourne Age cartoonist Bruce Petty – to ask themselves: Why do we hate us?
Mark Steyn is a columnist with Britain's Telegraph group and a regular contributor to The Australian's Opinion page.
Sunday, January 09, 2005
Official Tsunami Pledges
The above records the donations pledged so far by nations. It does not include:
- Donations by members of the public and corporations
- Pledges by NGO and union bodies (e.g. World Bank, EU, etc.)
- Use of military equipment & manpower and rescue team work (Australia and the US have significant military contributions)
Friday, January 07, 2005
- the lack of significant donations from their Islamic bretheren and particularly the oil rich Middle Eastern nations.
- The rhetoric and conspiracy theories evolving in much of the muslim world.
- The rejection of Israeli aid for political reasons which seems hardly fair on those whose lives would have been saved or enhanced by it (more on this topic another day).
While $350 million in government help now makes America the fourth largest donor-nation (behind Australia's $810 million, Germany's $680 million, and Japan's $500 million), no Muslim country rated among the top 10 benefactors. Before pledging $30 million Tuesday, 19th-ranked Saudi Arabia offered just $10 million. Sandra Bullock, an actress bereft of mineral resources, somehow gave the Red Cross $1 million.
Reuters Wednesday tracked the government contributions from around the Arab oil patch. (No. 20 Qatar: $25 million; No. 22 United Arab Emirates: $20 million; No. 27 Kuwait: $10 million; No. 32 Algeria: $2 million; No. 33 Bahrain: $2 million; No. 34 Libya: $2 million). The $91 million in donations across these seven oil-soaked Muslim states plus Saudi Arabia officially are running on fumes.
The oppression and corruption caused by America and the Jews have increased. Have you heard of these beaches that are called 'tourists' paradise?' You have all probably heard of Bangkok. We read about it, and knew it as the center of corruption on the face of this earth. Over there, there are Zionist and American investments. Over there they bring Muslims and others to prostitution. Over there, there are beaches, which they dubbed 'tourists' paradise,' while only a few meters away, the locals live in hell on earth. They cannot make ends meet, while a few meters away there is a paradise, 'tourists' paradise.'
Do you want the earth to turn a blind eye to the corrupt oppressors? Do you want the sea… Do you want the sea to lower its waves in the face of corruption that it sees with its own eyes?! No, the zero hour has come.
Palestinian Authority TV, December 31, 2005. To view the clip, visit http://memritv.org/Search.asp?ACT=S9&P1=451.
Whoever reads the Koran, given by the Maker of the World, can see how these nations were destroyed. There is one reason: they lied, they sinned, and [they] were infidels. Whoever studies the Koran can see this is the result…
These countries, in which these things occurred – don't they refrain from adopting Allah's law, which is a form of heresy? Man-made laws have been chosen over Allah's law, which has been deemed unsuitable to judge people?! Whoever does not act according to Allah's law is a heretic, that's what Allah said in the Koran. Don't these countries have witchcraft, sorcery, deceitfulness, and abomination?
Al-Bashar, advisor to Saudi Arabia's Justice Minister on Al-Majd TV (Saudi Arabia/UAE), January 5, 2005. To view the clip, visit http://memritv.org/Search.asp?ACT=S9&P1=462.
We know that at these resorts, which unfortunately exist in Islamic and other countries in South Asia, and especially at Christmas, fornication and sexual perversion of all kinds are rampant. The fact that it happened at this particular time is a sign from Allah. It happened at Christmas, when fornicators and corrupt people from all over the world come to commit fornication and sexual perversion. That's when this tragedy took place, striking them all and destroyed everything. It turned the land into wasteland, where only the cries of the ravens are heard. I say this is a great sign and punishment on which Muslims should reflect.Prof. Al-Fawzan on Al-Majd TV (Saudi Arabia/UAE), December 31, 2004. To view the clip, visit http://memritv.org/Search.asp?ACT=S9&P1=459.
The problem is that the [Christian] holidays are accompanied by forbidden things, by immorality, abomination, adultery, alcohol, drunken dancing, and … and revelry. A belly dancer costs 2500 pounds per minute and a singer costs 50,000 pounds per hour, and they hop from one hotel to another from night to dawn. Then he spends the entire night defying Allah.Al-Munajjid on Al-Majd TV (Saudi Arabia/UAE), January 1, 2005. To view the clip, visit http://memritv.org/Search.asp?ACT=S9&P1=452.
Was [the earthquake] caused by American, Israeli, and Indian nuclear testing on 'the day of horror?' Why did the 'Ring of Fire' explode?
...some kind of human intervention that destabilized the tectonic plates, an intervention that is caused only in nuclear experiments and explosions...
...The three most recent tests appeared to be genuine American and Israeli preparations to act together with India to test a way to liquidate humanity. In the[ir] most recent test, they began destroying entire cities over extensive areas.
Similarly, many international reports spoke of joint Indian-Israeli nuclear activity. Moreover, only this year Arab and Islamic countries intervened more than three times in the U.S. to stop this joint nuclear activity.
the center of an earthquake that took place some 40 kilometers under the ocean floor could not have caused such destruction unless nuclear testing had been conducted close to the tectonic plates in these countries, or unless several days previously there had been [nuclear] activity that caused these plates to shift and collide – which constitutes a danger to all humanity, not only to the inhabitants of these countries…
Al-Usbu' (Egypt), January 1, 2005.
Thursday, January 06, 2005
It has been an interesting few months. John Howard was reelected in a landslide in
Just goes to prove that good things come in threes... or 72!
And the consequences:
and Indonesian/Asian relations are closer than ever and we didn't have to compromise any standards along the way. Howard, Australia
- Bush was reelected by 59 million "dumb voters" (as the Daily Mirror reported it) and the end of the world has yet to arrive. And,
- the death of the "peace prize" laureate seems to have somehow exponentially improved the odds for peace with democratic elections taking place in the coming Sunday; with Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia and Gulf State members rekindling ties with the “Zionist Enemy”; and the situation forcing Syrian president to serenade Israel to get a piece of the pie.
It is true though, that like any good French movie, the year could not have ended with such a