the talking dog



December 2001 Postings

Back to Home Page


The Left-Leaning Dog Says:

The Rabid Dog Says:

Brooklyn, December 31, 2001.  Well, so long and good riddance to Y2K1.  Maybe, let us pray, Y2K2 will be a year that at least approaches a peaceful and fulfilling one for mankind.

Frankly, my dear RD, aside from not giving a damn about either Yasser or Bibi right now for the same reason (to paraphrase Ariel Sharon, at the moment, both are irrelevant), the Palestinian "issue" is, as it has always been a definition game.  Since Golda Meir (born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin) defined herself as a "Palestinian", and historical "Palestine" extended much farther and wider than the current Israel plus occupied territories, we have many slippery definitions.

The easy answer is that the "Palestinians" are simply Arabs,  of which there are hundreds of millions over a score of nations and thousands of times the land mass of Israel, who have been used by the Arab world as political pawns to express their displeasure at the EXISTENCE of the Jewish State, anywhere in the world of course, but in their midst, particularly.  Also, rather than reconcile themselves with the international mandate that created the Jewish state, the "Palestinians" immediately tried to destroy it -- and did so again and again (48, 56, 67, 73, currently).

All we need to know for our purposes is that there was a deal -- perhaps not the perfect deal -- perhaps not even the FINAL deal -- but a deal that all objective parties believed was inconceivable that Israel would offer.  The Palestinians not only found a pretense to turn it down, they initiated the bloodiest round of intifada yet.  If they wanted to be free of Israeli occupation and "oppression"  ("oppression that historically their ancestors sought by being attracted to Palestine in the first place to benefit from health and infrastructure improvements brought in by the hated Zionists), in a contiguous state with Jerusalem as its capital, all Yasser had to do was sign.  Of course, had he done so, the freedom loving Palestinian people probably would have assassinated him for doing so.  So what can I say?

Well, to paraphrase the Passover Seder:  maybe next year in Jerusalem...  (though, if it involves flying, your LLD probably won't be going there!)


Brooklyn, December 28, 2001.  Well, let me take a moment away from the Israeli-Palestinian fiasco to note that two of our “coalition partners” in the "war against terrorism" have, evidently, taken it upon themselves to upstage our 1,000 troop "war" by lining up armies and threatening to launch nuclear weapons at each other.  Fortunately, our president now (presumably) KNOWS the names Musharraf and Vajpayee.  Because, while we were watching our OWN capital engulfed in the flames of terrorist hatred, we ignored the fact that India has now had to endure similar attacks against a state capital, and its national parliament, attacks unquestionably sponsored and directed, if not outright carried out by, our "friends" in the Pakistani ISS terrorist -- I mean intelligence -- service.  Somebody better move fast, before the world's two newest nuclear powers blow the crap out of each other -- which will REALLY fuck things up.  No, don't send Colin for this one, Dubya.  Consider going yourself.  Really.  It’s that important.

Anyway, onto the side show.  I find it amusing that a terrorist group that got itself a seat on the United Nations, and could control the agenda of that body to the point where literally the majority of its resolutions over the years seem to be devoted to condemning exactly one democratic state (not to mention the Durban fiasco), with the tacit financial and military backing of the BILLION STRONG Moslem world, and whose favorite tactic seems to be the deliberate targeting of civilians (which has included numerous Americans over the years), should be construed as the "underdog".  I find it odd that the RD somehow equates anti-hero worship with liberalism.  By this logic, of course, all liberals should now be rooting for the outgunned Taliban and al Qaeda, because a vastly superior force is stalking and uprooting them.  Pish posh, I say.

The Palestinians have gripes, no question.  Israel, by the way, is hardly a happy occupier, either.  But had the nascent United States been offered IN NEGOTIATION the territorial limits of the 13 colonies in exchange for a non-aggression pact with the mother country and TURNED IT DOWN, preferring instead to launch suicide bombers in the streets of London, I think that analogy would be more apt!!!


Brooklyn, December 27, 2001.  Welcome back to the rabid dog, making a post-Christmas appearance.  Your LLD was getting lonely.  Actually, if the RD was paying attention to this side of the line, he would have noticed that your LLD had proposed a peace plan that gave the "oppressed" Palestinians a contiguous territory and some cash.  I assure you that Yasir and the boys would find a way to turn THAT down to.  Alas, the Palestinians (like the Saudis and most of the Arab world) don't have the Zionist entity as they call it even listed on their school maps.  Their maps, like their hearts and minds, say:  from [the Jordan] river to [the Mediterranean] sea.  Their true aspiration is to fulfill their fantasy: to coexist with, well, no one -- because their goal is for there not to be a Jewish state, which is why they have participated in endless attacks on Israel.

Why haven't hundreds of millions of Arabs been able to displace a couple of million Jews in an area the size of New Jersey?  Doesn't matter why: they're just not going to do it.  But they can still try.  Which is why, even when a Palestinian state is eventually foisted upon them (and it will be), all it will be used for is a staging ground for yet another attack on Israel.

That's why your LLD really has no sympathy for this purported national liberation movement, that has simply not acquitted itself well, and, having pioneered attacks that kill children not collaterally, but as their intent, does not get, and does not deserve, my sympathy.


Brooklyn, December 26, 2001.  News of the world:  Richard Reed (that apparently IS his name) is British in origin, resident of Brixton, East London, of Jamaican mother and English father, and a convert to Islam (and attended the same mosque in Brixton as Mr. Massoui, currently on trial as "the 20th hijacker").  Further, anecdotal evidence places him, during a known stint in Pakistan, in Al Qaeda training camps.  Well, while December is clearly not over (and your LLD shudders about what might happen New Year’s Eve -- though the blessed St. Rudy will still be in charge of security here until the following morning), given that the target was AMERICAN Airlines, the target of two September and one November acts of terror, we can tentatively conclude that blowing up a Paris to Miami flight was the intended Christmas present to America from al Qaeda.  (By the way, Mrs. LLD believes that AMERICAN Airlines continues to be targeted because of its name, just as was tabloid publisher AMERICAN Media targeted for anthrax.  There is much to what Mrs. LLD says, given the seeming al Qaeda obsession with symbols AMERICAN.  Your LLD is also of the opinion, however, that American Airlines should seriously scrutinize its security contractors -- and then have them flogged.  Flying or not flying on American Airlines won't be an issue for your LLD: he won't be flying ANYWHERE anytime soon.)  [Editor’s Note:  And the WORLD Trade Center fits into this name equation…how, exactly?  We live in AMERICA, hence there are a lot of things bearing that name as a juicy terrorist targets.]

And just when we stopped paying attention to Israel for five minutes after Israel properly kept Arafat under tent arrest, or whatever form of travel restriction applies to keep him from a Christmas photo op in Bethlehem, along comes YET ANOTHER bin Laden videotape making us pay attention again!  Once again, we wonder when our government will let the rest of us in on what 100,000 United States based subscribers to Al Jazeera by satellite ALREADY KNOW (obviously, the absurdity of our government's censoring English language media outlets from broadcasting bin Laden's piffle here because he might send some "secret message" is crystal clear, considering that a large audience of Arabic speakers HERE will have already seen him, unedited, in his own language!)

For those of you with Arab text support who can read Arabic, try  (Don't worry, although the CIA will doubtless monitor your monitoring, less than 5 of its officers even speak Arabic, so they won't know what you're up to).

Now, of course, according to himself, bin Laden is devoting his cause ENTIRELY to the liberation of the Palestinian people.  (Of course, it was the Tamil Tigers, not the Palestinians, who have made suicide bombing a common occurrence.)  Still, it wasn't the Libyans, or the Iraqis or Iranians dancing in the street after the Twin Towers fell (killing thousands of innocent people):  it was the Palestinians.  And an entire population willing to have their male children sacrificed for the greater political glory, well, a visionary like bin Laden can CLEARLY see the value in THAT.  So, I guess fair is fair:  the Palestinians owe you their gratitude, Osama.  And you owe them yours.


Brooklyn, December 25, 2001.  Peace on earth and good will toward man from us here at The Talking Dog.  Since none of that is really going to happen, we will at least hope for some sort of a cease fire for the foreseeable future, as an aspirational matter.

Brooklyn, December 21, 2001.  Happy first day of winter and shortest day of the year, to our Moslem readers, a belated Happy Eid  (just kidding, we have no Moslem readers, though all are welcome), and to all, a happy holiday season -- to the extent that this is the least bit possible, in this most fucked up of all possible years.  (Even Baby LLD has, most uncharacteristically, been a bit under the weather, which kept your LLD quieter than usual.  Fortunately, she is feeling much better.)

Anyway, the beat goes on:  kudos (in a rare, non-sarcastic way) to Tom Daschle for having the balls to "Just Say No" to a massive regressive tax give-back called the "Republican Stimulus Package" -- doubtless, invented by the principals of Enron for the purpose of funding their legal defense!  And to say fuck you to some of Bush's appointments.  And to the Senate Majority Leader's polite obstruction, while still being patriotic, in the face of a really nasty Administration and House of Representatives, for whom bipartisanship means getting their way.  (If Trent Lott were worth a damn, of course, he would be developing a centrist coalition, of course, which could get at least a modified Republican agenda, as opposed to the forced position of simply having to obstruct.)  Most Americans, of course, want the absurd right-wing agenda being pushed even more forcefully since 9-11 STYMIED -- and the polite, understated Daschle seems to be the man to do it.  Keep it up, Tom.

And well done, today's New York Times, for laying out next year's gubernatorial battle between Jeb ("the old boys and the new Florida") and Janet ("the old Florida, but no old boys").  No contest, of course, as your LLD sees it: not to worry, Jeb, you can always get a job in one of Neil's S&Ls.


Brooklyn, December 16, 2001.  In case some of you were wondering why your LLD would apparently pander to the President (particularly so close to the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court's election that overrode the American people's election that MADE him the president), let me just say that one does not have to agree with everything -- or indeed ANYTHING -- the sitting government is doing, to support it wholeheartedly in time of crisis.

In answer to the question of is the president (a) a well-meaning dilettante boob in over his head, who is forced to defer to his more seasoned and intelligent advisors, even if more experience and intelligence on his part would tell him to demur in the interest of the big picture; or (b) inexperienced, but nonetheless a  man of character who has risen fast to take charge of the situation, while brilliantly surrounding himself with wise counsel in the process -- all bets lean toward (a), especially since that wise counsel doubtless includes his father, previously the stupidest man ever to hold the presidency.

Not that any of this is written in stone:  as I’ve said in this column more than once, I'd really like to be wrong about the guy.  In fact, I HOPE I'm wrong about the guy.  And we can still be happy about routing the Taliban and al-Qaeda, even if, in the end, we had remarkably little to do with it!


Brooklyn, December 15, 2001.  Well, watching the president make a pre-game address to the squad of the hapless Naval Academy football squad, which lost its final game (going 0-11, I believe) against Army in the season-ender, it’s just hard not to like the guy at a personal level, just as, during the campaign, anyway, it was hard to LIKE Al Gore, and why under ANY context, it’s hard to like Mark Green.  Dubya just seems like a sincere, likeable man, in the way that his smarmy Rhodes scholar predecessor only pretended to be.  Further, he has shown the character to refuse to shake hands with that bastard Arafat, as well as pulling out of the Durban "racism conference" fiasco.  (If Secretary Powell weren't scrambling to undo in substance the effectiveness of the rhetorical snub, we might actually have a sensible policy in that area -- which is to say, to FUCK the people who tried to destroy this country and damn their sensitivities, and wholeheartedly support the country that, to the greatest degree anyway, is a liberal democracy, albeit a flawed one, and with that in mind, IMPOSING a territorial settlement on the Palestinians that includes the continued existence of the Jewish state backed with a formal United States defense commitment, like it or not).   The RD should have a field day with that one!

That said, what the hell is he up to with the ABM repudiation?  Your LLD does not disagree with the premise that, with the Cold War over (albeit, not SAFELY over:  it would be inconceivable for a terrorist group to dare take on the United States itself with even the remotest possibility of triggering a direct response ultimately against the Soviet homeland -- continuing apologies to apartheid-era South Africa for use of the term), the tenets of Cold War arms control probably need to be re-worked.  The problem is, Russia is doing something EXTREMELY troubling in the nuclear area right now: it is giving psychotic, terrorist sponsoring, anti-American Iranian ayatollahs the means to make atomic and hydrogen bombs.

Meanwhile, our government is holding a HUGE number of chips in the game with Russia.  We can buy oil; we can limit NATO memberships; we can subsidize efforts to control Russian nuclear material (instead of CUTTING THOSE BACK, in the name of justifying inappropriate domestic tax cuts); and we can "modify" rather than "abrogate" the ABM treaty -- in exchange for playing ball in the big picture, to keep the nuclear oligopoly in the hands of stable players (which DO NOT include sponsors of terrorist groups committed to the destruction of the Western world).  Instead, it appears that, rather than the security of our nation, the purported basis for developing anti-ballistic missiles in the first place, the concern is more the ability to let the contracts to develop it!  Flawed priorities, alas, lead to flawed results:  even if you can't help liking the guy (and by the way, we join in the high approval, for the most part, of the deliberate war effort; it may prove to be the most effective strategy after all), still, you gotta question the big picture.  That's what PATRIOTIC members of a democracy do, John Ashcroft be damned.


Brooklyn December 13, 2001.  Well, here it is, the video and transcript of the smoking gun video where the crass bin Laden shows no fatherly concern for his suicide bombersHuh?

Are we to believe that bin Laden -- who loves to produce his own stuff for the Arab Street's consumption -- would just leave a gem like this around?  I dunno, your LLD, who, like all Americans, has ZERO doubt of bin Laden's complicity and responsibility for 9/11, sincerely doubts the authenticity of this tape, certainly as a whole and as presented.

Frankly, that Bin Laden has been allowed to walk the Earth after the heinous atrocities he ADMITTED to performing in East Africa in 1998, which adds to Bill Clinton's crimes against humanity the events of September 11th, as he had nearly three years to have Bin Laden hunted down and killed, and the so-called retaliation by destroying a SUDANESE MEDICINE PLANT gets added, as Chris Hitchens would like, as a WAR CRIME committed by Bill Clinton in the name of apparent libidinal self-defense.

On the subject of war criminals, let's hear it for Kofi Annan (mastermind, in conjunction with Bill Clinton, of, inter alia, the non-intervention in the Rwanda genocide, the Srebrenica genocide, and…well, you get the picture), who joins Yasir Arafat as an honoree of the Norwegian committee that awards a peace prize in the name of a dynamite merchant.  Way to go Kofi!


Brooklyn, December 11, 2001.  Your LLD (in lower Manhattan while performing his monthly voluntary, and grossly unappreciated, service as a special master in the state's court system) took a bizarre stroll this evening, around his former office building (and home to his job for 5 1/2 years), a walk not taken since the morning of September 11th itself.  That building is now, part of a frenzy of activity literally designed to clean every molecule of air in it (PCB, asbestos, and other goodies occupy that building; my former law firm does not).  The building (100 Church Street) was, and is, located a block from Ground Zero, and indeed, is now the closest point to Ground Zero one is allowed to get without a fire hat or badge.

At best, the experience is hard for even your relatively prolix LLD to reduce to words.  I will spare everyone the cliché:  in all honesty, it seemed DIFFERENT -- all, totally different.  Creepy.  And yes, I had some minor flashbacks and unease.  We are eons away from "returning to normal" in that part of the world.

Anyway, in the "let's not make this country actually worth defending" department, the Bush Administration still can't get its act together on releasing the latest Osama tape.  Why not?  Is it a fake?  Is there a CHANCE that we can't trust our own government?  Not possible.


Brooklyn, December 10, 2001.  And so, we bombard some caves near Tora Bora, which I continue to insist must be in the South Pacific, rather than in Afghanistan (the caves are, in fact, in Eastern Afghanistan, near the Pakistani border).  Is Osama home?  Apparently, he doesn't want to come out to play, anymore.

Well, the success of the endeavor has had some amazing consequences:  even the never even-handed European Union has actually come out with a statement not openly mocking of and condemnatory to Israel -- acknowledging that Arafat must dismantle Hamas and other terrorist groups that can be read in The Jerusalem Post.  Happy Hanukkah from Brussels, apparently.

At least we can continue to count on the Attorney General to keep things in perspective:  no silver lining should go without an ongoing cloud, in this case, his coming extremely close to calling the Congressional oversight hearing regarding his own actions to be unpatriotic for questioning his heavy handed actions, which we all know ARE patriotic solely because he takes them!  (Problems in the "this is a government of laws not of men department" are reminiscent of the now-famous Judge Ronny White incident, where even-handed Ashcroft, now AG because he lost his Senate seat to a dead man, mercilessly blocked the judicial career of Ronny White on, at best, crass partisan and, at worst, racist grounds).  So thank you Attorney General Ashcroft, for keeping it all interesting, even if your actions, in the end, will make this a country not actually worth defending.


Brooklyn, December 8, 2001.  Well, let's hear it for Representative Condit, who, like many, have decided that the WTC tragedy, and the resulting surge in patriotism and calls (though not action) for self-sacrifice, to wit "United We Stand", wearing flag lapels and all the sort of thing should in NO sense diminish the opportunity for taking PERSONAL advantage of this situation -- lest, of course, it not be a TOTAL TRAGEDY.  Let us at The Talking Dog -- who predicted this within days of September 11th -- tell the rest of you with this link to the Sacramento Bee:  Gary Condit has filed to run for reelection.


Brooklyn, December 6, 2001.  Well, Mullah Omar has come out of his car long enough (apparently) to negotiate a side-switch surrender with the Northern alliance, and he will give up Kandahar in the process.  The price will probably be his own safe escort out of Afghanistan, into Pakistan perhaps.  Since we have been reticent about enforcing our will, and won't put our ground forces there to enforce it in an meaningful numbers in any event (other than, apparently, enough to hit with friendly fire!), the Northern Alliance can actually make that call on its own, if it wants.  They know the rules:  Omar is an evil nut -- but an AFGHAN evil nut.  Bin Laden & Co. are foreigners or Arabs -- so they can't be traded or amnestied (by the Northern Alliance).  Only Secretary Powell can do that.

For better or worse, we can now take pride in having liberated THREE Muslim countries (Bosnia, Kosovo, and now Afghanistan) in the last ten years, for which our reward has been the undying hatred of the Arab world (and the murder of thousands of our civilians).  We are in perfect position now, without firing a shot of our own this time, in Palestine, to liberate a fourth, through an IMPOSED peace settlement (which, to satisfy the ISRAELIS – yes, their satisfaction MATTERS) should probably include no more than a ceremonial role for Arafat, with a forced (externally, by the United States) set of democratic institutions dumped on the Palestinians, whether they like them or not.  (Your LLD likes this idea more, because it completely undermines the Clinton posturing of just getting two parties, no matter how absurd it is, to "talk", resulting in disaster in Northern Ireland, the Middle East, and many other places- and hopefully, should further besmirch the Clinton Administration in ways that even the under-reported fiasco of its evident rebuffing of Sudan's attempts to extradite bin Laden!)

Well, strange times, indeed.  To the Northern Alliance, like the City of New York, basically a bunch of working stiffs doing the dirty work and taking the hits for this country, with no reward from the fat guys in Texas and little gratitude from this country for the most part, a hearty Allah Akbar and Happy Ramadan to you.  And thank you.


Brooklyn, December 5, 2001.  For an interesting perspective on the end-game of the Sharon government's current minuet with Yasser Arafat (all but blowing up his house!), see this News Telegraph article.

At this point, your LLD has no idea on how this will, or even should, turn out.  Unfortunately, the reality is that the United States will insist on an excess of "pragmatism" while our "friends" in Iran buy nuclear materials and the mid-range weapons to deliver them from our other friends in Russia, while we tacitly encourage this by under-funding efforts to dismantle the Russian nuclear arsenal (so we can fund bigger tax cuts).  So since "pragmatism" will govern, I will try to work in low-rise buildings.

Arafat is obviously a bad man who, objectively, no one would mind seeing displaced, certainly from Palestine.  On the other hand for the most part the people behind him are much crazier than he is.  Your LLD would love nothing more than to see a series of progressive democratic regimes in the Middle East- starting with Palestine, and then moving through Syria, and Iraq -- a group of strong allies this country can rely on.  I am pragmatic to know this:  ain't gonna happen.  At least, its not foreseeable.

So, we all have to muddle through.  Which may be why, as unappetizing as it is, Arafat will probably be left in place.


Brooklyn, December 4, 2001.  Well, as the stories of extra-constitutional derring-do on the part of our extremely popular government begin to mount, we would be remiss if we did not comment on the new Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building -- named after the first presidential-brother-turned-attorney-general, and Mrs. Clinton take note, our ORIGINAL grandstanding carpet-bagging New York Senator who-was-really-from-another-state.

Don't get your LLD wrong, in all fairness to the late RFK, its not as if the Bush Administration were naming the Justice Department Building the John Mitchell Building, or perhaps even the Ed Meese Building (disclosure: your LLD at one time worked in the department headed by Mr. Meese).  Still, it DOES seem comparable to christening it the Joseph McCarthy Senate Office Building (after all, the late Attorney General and NY Senator was a close protégé of Senator Tailgunner Joe), or perhaps, the Henry Kissinger Human Rights Commission Building.

RFK, like his late brother JFK (and unlike their younger brother, the senior senator from Massachusetts, who has now become a parody), WERE NOT LIBERALS.  In fact, RFK had a, well, troubling record on various aspects of civil rights, not surprising considering that he shared a job with Roy Cohn!   So, the fact that the Bush Administration would take time out from ITS OWN promulgation of civil rights curtailments to name the RFK Building is, well interesting.  VERY interesting.  Brings to mind the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building.


Brooklyn, December 2, 2001.  Welcome to yet another month of script here at The Talking Dog.  What can we expect from December, 2001?  Doubtless-, more suicide bomber attacks in Israel (2 dozen ALREADY DEAD as I write this in a mall and bus bombing), followed by Sharon rushing back from Washington, followed by reprisals, followed by more suicide bombings.  And more terrorist actions against New York -- the pattern so far: September, plane crashes into WTC; October, anthrax; November, another plane crash.  December?  If we knew, it wouldn't be terrorists,. now, would it?

Oh, and another assault on civil liberty and the Constitution from Attorney General Ashcroft.  Your LLD has harped on some peak moments, the "military tribunals" (Dubya thinks he's Lincoln, or FDR), the in camera secret detentions.  We should add the endless interrogations -- the call, for example, in the Detroit area, for Arab American males to submit themselves for questioning (or be subject to law enforcement visits).  While Dub says "love thy ARAB OIL PROVIDING neighbor", and "this isn't a war against Islam", Attorney General Ashcroft and minions are incredulous:  of course that's EXACTLY what this is.  Frankly, the absurdity of it all is maddening, when one realizes how this is all working out:  likely perpetrators or at least confidantes of perpetrators WITH LIKELY KNOWLEDGE, such as THE BIN LADEN FAMILY, are promptly escorted out of the reach of American law enforcement with the help and blessing of our State Department; key Al Qaeda documents in Kabul, many of which would disclose most of its Western networks, are NOT RETRIEVED by our intelligence service or military (largely because we don't really HAVE intelligence or military services there), but instead by journalists or looters or whomever.  Instead, we believe MORE FRUITFUL areas of intelligence are schmucky Middle Eastern immigrants, presumably most of whom have no POTENTIAL for supplying useful information.

But here we go again.  While not having time to report to the Congress in which he served (and which confirms him and approves his budget), he DID FIND TIME to invalidate Oregon's assisted-suicide law -- a law that he doubtless doesn't like.  Well, I guess we know the answer to the Senate inquirer's questions about how  vigorously he would enforce laws regarding protection of rights to obtain abortions, or apparently, other civil liberties.  About as vigorously as the Defense Department protects our East Coast cities, apparently.

Happy New Year...Same As the Old Year.  I cannot believe the lengths to which Jewish liberals (in the context of left- leaning dogs, perhaps they should be called "Hebrew Nationals") will go to defend Israeli actions.  At the risk of having our civilized dialogue devolve into a dogfight, I will briefly note that if Palestinians are "simply" Arabs, then Israelis are "merely" Jews.  So what, you say?  Exactly.

The "right" to a state, such as one exists for any group of people is just a legal construct anyway, a matter of economic, military and political might having very little to do with moral "rights" or edicts from God.  The Israelis have no more "right" to the land on which they live now than do New Yorkers have to Manhattan...that is, they have every "right" as long as they have the wherewithal to keep the original inhabitants from reclaiming the land.

(And what grousers those Indians are!  We gave them all that great reservation land in the tundra of the Great Plains and in the wilderness of places like Connecticut and upstate New York and then set them free to run...casinos...) 

Right now, the Israelis obviously have the military upper hand, and perhaps, because of the suicide bombers, they have even briefly regained the political upper hand.  But they won't have it for long, especially not with pictures of rock-throwing Palestinian teens being blasted by Israeli tanks being continuously broadcast into our living rooms.  The Palestinians have made lots of dumb moves --  managing the media has not been one of them.  The Israelis can negotiate now, while they still have some political capital...or they can keep stonewalling.  Perhaps their military dominance will indefinitely trump Arab economic (read:  oil) and political (read:  oil) dominance.  Were I an Israeli, however, I would not want to bet on it.

Finally, although there is some dispute over what was really offered in the so-called "final" deal, why can't Israel, the vastly superior military power, just enforce the deal unilaterally?  Pull out.  Stop building settlements.  Go home.  Why punish the Palestinians anymore for having an unpopular leader than the Afghanis for having the misfortune to have been overrun by the Taliban and al Qaeda?


Bibi or Yasser?  Which one one would you trust to hold your wallet?  The answer, of course, is neither...but all that tells us is how unpalatable are the options in this conflict.  A good liberal would, of course, try to see the "good" in the Palestinian they are clearly being oppressed by both Israel and their corrupt leadership.  (The undermanned Taliban and al Qaeda are obviously oppressors of their peoples and hence inappropriate analogs by my increasingly less esteemed pound-mate...while his status as a lefty is questionable, clearly, he really is a dog and not a fox.  I would also add that the Founding Fathers would not have been particularly keen to negotiate a peace with the King of England had the terms included continued British settlements in downtown New York, Philadelphia and Boston as well as dominion over Washington.)


Defining Left-Leaning Down.  Truly, the southpaw dog helps to redefine liberalism every time he sits at his keyboard.

Let me see if I've got this straight:  the guys in the uniforms with the guns and planes and tanks are the oppressed ones, while the ones with makeshift bombs who were pushed off their land are the heavies.  Is that right?

While I wouldn't go so far as to analogize the Palestinians with American Indians (who are undoubtedly spared the disdain of the Limousine Liberal Dog because they didn't have access to plastic explosives in their day), it certainly is fair to point out that the very country currently indulging our prose stylings was started by people who were, in essence, terrorists who felt they were being taken advantage of and took steps to expel their "oppressors".

But then, maybe my esteemed colleague only views a cause as righteous if it's a sure winner backed by superior firepower.


I'm Back!  And, frankly, I don't know where to start, as are two months of left-leaning drivel to counteract.  But for the sake of argument, let's begin with Palestine, as in:  why in the world is a putative "left-leaner" so eager to see a poor, oppressed group of people continue to be denied self-determination?  Admittedly, Osama bin Laden has grabbed this issue and run with it after seemingly having little interest in the past, but so what?  Osama is a bright guy, and the issue is a good one:  sad people, pushed off their land, trying to get attention by throwing rocks and blowing themselves up.  A military power smashing them to smithereens on a regular basis.  Without a political voice, a voice that should presumably be a liberal one, what choice do they have?  They aren't going to beat the Israelis on the battlefield, after all.



Back to Home Page