Quick picks *UPDATED*

I’ve got a deadline, so I thought I’d just give you a few links to things that interested me this morning:

Rick Moran highlights Zimbabwe’s insane inflation, another horrible indictment of Mugabe, who took one of Africa’s most stable and prosperous nations and reduced it to abject poverty.

An Iraq War widow, trying to help others, was scammed out of $57,000, and now needs help.

I don’t know if Jonas E. Alexis is a good writer or not, but he’s certainly written what sounds like my kind of book: In the Name of Education: How Weird Ideologies Corrupt our Public Schools, Politics, the Media, Higher Institutions, and History. You can read an interview with him here and see if it sounds like your kind of book too.

Chavez the coke-head — it explains so much, including the paranoia and megalomania.

About three years after the rest of us, NPR is finally catching on to the fact that there is a problem integrating Islamists into Western culture, especially when it comes to the subjugation of Muslim women.

Laer does a fantastic post about Israel’s decision to cut of power to Gaza. I would be more impressed if it weren’t for the fact that I know that, in a day or two, when Palestinian shrieking reaches fever pitch, the UN, Europe and the US will gang up on Israel and demand that she act in a more humanitarian way. And Israel, instead of sticking to her guns and refusing to provide supplies to those trying to destroy her and every one of her citizens, will yield — and the Palestinians will be heartened once again.

I blogged yesterday about the problem with Obama’s race, and it’s not that he’s black, it’s that the Left cares deeply that he’s black. Apparently (and unsurprisingly), I’m not the only one who has figured this out. Slate is running excerpts from what promises to be an interesting book: Richard Thompson Ford’s The Race Card: How Bluffing About Bias Makes Race Relations Worse. Given the nature of the publishing industry, this book was obviously written before Obama and Hillary dove into the cesspool of racism, so its presence on the market right now is serendipitous.

That great curmudgeon Pat Condell takes on Canadian dhimmitude.

UPDATE:  Hah!  What did I tell you?  Two days and Israel’s already started caving.  I can also guarantee you that the Palestinians are not thanking the Israeli’s for their munificence.  Instead, they’re gloatingly thinking “weak, weak, weak” — and they’re right.

9 Responses

  1. A comment on “Chavez the coke-head.” Chavez was chewing coca leaves, not snorting cocaine. The % of active ingredient in coca leaves is very small. Comparing the ‘intoxication” from chewing coca leaves versus ingesting cocaine is like comparing drinking coffee to getting really drunk.

    Chewing coca leaves has been used for millennia in the Andes as a way to continue working when hungry or tired: a slight pick-me-up. Decades ago I worked in northern Argentina, several years after coca leaves had been outlawed in Argentina. While chewing coca leaves in northern Argentina was not as common as it was in Bolivia, nor as universal as sipping Yerba Mate tea from a metal straw was and is in Argentina, it was done and was not an indication of degeneracy.

    Old-timers there were not going to change their habits of decades because of the passage of a law. I knew several middle aged Argentines in responsible management positions, one a grandfather, who chewed coca leaves. Chewing coca leaves had no detrimental effect on their job performance nor on their overall functioning.

  2. The NPR piece on integration of Muslim women in Germany is good. Although the info has been available in Germany for years, it was, until recently, either denied or ignored by lots of multiculti do-gooders.

  3. Gringo, I’d agree with you if he was just chewing leaves. The same post to which I linked, though, says he’s also smoking coca paste, which is a very concentrated from of the leaf. That gets from mild, caffeine-like stimulated into some serious aggression inducing drugs.

  4. I acknowledge your correction.

  5. I would be more impressed if it weren’t for the fact that I know that, in a day or two, when Palestinian shrieking reaches fever pitch, the UN, Europe and the US will gang up on Israel and demand that she act in a more humanitarian way. And Israel, instead of sticking to her guns and refusing to provide supplies to those trying to destroy her and every one of her citizens, will yield — and the Palestinians will be heartened once again.

    This is just a reminder to people that if the HRC kangaroo courts and Un affiliates existed back in Ameri Indian and white settler days, the conflict between the red man and the white man would NEVER have been resolved either way. These bureaucrats don’t know how to solve problems, they only know how to prolong them.

    I can also guarantee you that the Palestinians are not thanking the Israeli’s for their munificence. Instead, they’re gloatingly thinking “weak, weak, weak” — and they’re right.

    After a few raids on white settlers and family convoys to the West, people just no longer tolerated such things. Peace didn’t happen because the American Indians never lived in peace and never could enforce peace agreements. It’s just like in Iraq and Arabia. Any agreement with a clan chief only extends to the territory the clan chief controls. It doesn’t stop anybody else from raiding your towns for slaves and booty.

    That’s why we had US vs Ameri-Indian wars, including Custer’s Last Stand and Wounded Knee. The Ameri-Indian tribes were always raiding and fighting amongst themselves, to the point where the US couldn’t even try to admit them as a state. By the time of Andrew Jackson, it was too late. It no longer mattered what advances in politics occured in the Iroquis or other tribes, because the border warfare and blood debt has gone on for too long. The US federal government could no longer, and never did, control the behavior of white settlers and State militias. All the white settlers and State militias ever knew was eternal conflict with the Indians, and that’s how they behaved. Not even orders from the federal government to desist because of “treaties signed” mattered, because treaties are treatises while blood is blood. One is thicker than the other.

    People may not be satisfied with how the peace was derived, but it is better than the eternal conflicts between white settlers, Indians, and other foreigners.

    The thing with the Jews and the Palestinians is that this conflict has gone on for centuries. Milleniums even. It won’t end because the Jews won’t end it.

    Here’s a quick recap of Jewish military history. One of Israel’s earliest enemies were the Philistines. Before the birth of Christ, and after the Philistines were gone or moved out, came the Seleucid and Ptolemaic empires. They were the Diadochai of Alexander’s Empire. The Seleucids controlled Babylon to Persia to parts of Turkey. They or the Ptolemies were inevitably in control of Jerusalem for much of that time period. Whenever the Jews would get conquered, they would be able to co-exist so long as the reigning Emperor did not choose to change the religious practices of Jews. The Jews started to revolt, often, due to the fact that one of the Emperors of the Seleucids tried to Hellenize the Jews. Sacrifice pigs at Temple Mount. Jews didn’t like that, so they rebelled. So thus starts the cycle of rebellion and rebellion getting crushed. The Jews were doing this in the 200 BC and they were doing it in the early AD when Rome controlled Jerusalem. This was due to various causes, but the important thing to remember is that the reason why the area around Jerusalem is named “Palestine” is due to the fact that after one of the emperors crushed a Jewish revolt, he renamed the province to one of the historic enemies of the Jews, just cause the emperor was spiteful.

    So historically the Jews have been pushed around by people, primarily because other people wanted the Jews to join them but the Jews said no and then bad things happened. Now that this social condition had been set, the Jews naturally became scapegoats for disaffected mobs and power hungry leaders. Whenever there is a problem, blame the Jews, cause the Jews are neither us nor truly foreigners.

    To the present day, they are still being pushed around, but not because they are weak. They are pushed around because the Jews have power but won’t use it. Has their history conditioned the people of Jerusalem to try, fail, and then attempt to survive under the heel of their oppressors? Has their blood been diluted and naturally selected because all the brash and brave people rebelled and were crucified early in the Jewish history?

    It’s an interesting set of questions pertaining to the meekness of the Jewish people today, in Israel.

    The Jews lost multiple millions to failed revolts. The Romans got so tired of it, they crucified every leader of one specific revolt attempt. That has got to do something to the gene pool even after thousands of years.

    The decision came as aid officials warned that Gaza, gripped by fuel and electricity shortages, was two or three days away from a health and food crisis, and as international alarm and criticism of Israel mounted.

    You know, Book, we used to call that a “siege” back in classical and medieval times. Ya know, a siege is what happens when an enemy city is encircled and have its supplies cut off. When the city surrenders, the siege is lifted. Alternatively, an allied army can come and beat back the besiegers, and then the siege will lift.

    The siege does not lift because the people of the city are ‘starving and low on supplies”. That is what a siege is for. It is a fundamental aspect of warfare. But I guess Israel thinks it is playing games, instead of being in a war to the knife.

    In games, you can reload.

  6. I went and looked up the source I was using about Jewish history, in order to see how accurate my memory was.

    Enjoy.

    Bet HaMikdash (“The Holy House”) to the Hebrews

    The Hebrew peoples are first mentioned in the 15th C BC by Amenhotep II, Pharoah of Aigyptos; and in the 13th C BC we are told that Pharoah Marniptah, pillaged the Jewish kingdom of Israel in Canaan.

    The people of this kingdom were alleged to have adhered fervently to a monotheistic religion that was inseparable with their cultural and ethnic identity. They had long venerated a sacred site (Mount Moriah / ‘Temple Mount’) in Jebus (Jerusalem) but it wasn’t until the 10th C BC that their king, Solomon built their first permanent temple to their god Yhwh on the spot.

    This temple was however sacked a few decades later by Sheshonk I, Pharoah of Aigyptos.

    The temple wasn’t fully restored until 835 BC when Joash, King of Judah invested considerable sums, only to have it stripped again for Sennacherib, King of Assyria in 716 BC.

    Josiah, King of Judah had restored the temple again in 640 BC when in 586 BC Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon completely destroyed it, the city of Jerusalem and carried a large portion of the population off into exile.

    With the fall of the Babylonian Empire in 539 BC, Cyrus the Great of Persia allowed the Jewish refugees to return home and commissioned the rebuilding of the temple. On March 12th, 515 BC the Jewish Governor Zerubbabel dedicated the new temple. Whilst the temple wasn’t as extravagant as its predecessor, nor as monumental as its successor, it still nonetheless presented an imposing structure on the skyline of Jerusalem.

    The temple narrowly avoided being destroyed again in 332 BC when the Jews refused to acknowledge the deification of Alexander the Great of Macedonia. Alexander was allegedly “turned from his anger” at the last minute by astute diplomacy and flattery. After the death of Alexander June 13, 323 BCE and the dismembering of his empire, the Ptolemies came to rule over Judea and the Temple.

    Under the Ptolemies, the Jews were given great liberty to maintain their religion and culture. When the Ptolemies were defeated at the Battle of Panium by Antiochus III ‘the Great’ of the Seleucids in 198 BC, things began to change.

    Antiochus who now controlled Judea tried to Hellenise the Jews and when he attempted to introduce Greek gods into the Jewish temple a large rebellion ensued. The rebellion was brutally crushed, but he took no further action. When Antiochus died in 187 BC in battle at Luristan, his son Seleucus IV Philopator succeeded him only to be murdered in 175 BC.\n\n

    Antiochus IV Epiphanes succeeded his older brother to the Seleucid throne and imediately adopted his father’s previous policy of Hellenisation. The Jews rebelled yet again and Antiochus in a rage, retaliated in force with little discresion shown between the guilty and innocent. Already smarting, the Jews became incensed when the religious observance of the Sabbath and Circumcision were outlawed. When Antiochus erected a statue of Zues in their temple and began sacrificing pigs their anger was pallable. They believed that this attack on the temple, the symbol of Jewish identity and faith was an attack on their very existence.\n\nWhen a Greek official tried to force a Jewish priest (Mattathias) to make a sacrifice to a Greek god in the temple, the priest slew him. Predictably, Antiochus resorted to the same bloody reprisals, but this only fomented further unrest. In 167 BC the Jews rose up en masse behind Mattathias and his five sons to fight and win their freedom. Mattathias, now called “The Hammer” re-dedicated the temple in 165 BC and the Jews celebrate this event to this day as ‘Hanukkah’\n\nIn 63 BC, the Jews were divided in a bitter civil war. Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus / Pompey the Great of Rome saw an opportunity not to be missed and took the side of Hyrcanus and the Pharisees. The later admitted he and his army into Jerusalem. Once inside, Pompey took action as he saw fit and began assaulting the Temple (against Jewish wishes) where the other party / Aristobulus and the Sadducees, had taken refuge. Jewish troops, Pharisees and Sadducees alike (12,000), then banded together and fought a desperate last minute defence of their temple. When it became apparent that the fight was lost, the survivors all committed suicide together rather than witness the “defilement” of their sacred place. Pompey having received the submission of the Jewish leaders looted the city and departed for Rome.

    In 54 BC Marcus Licinius Crassus of Rome sacked the Jewish Temple. When news of Crassus’ death at the Battle of Carrhae (53 BC) reached Judea, the Jews claimed back their independence. After a brutal Roman campaign in 43 BC, the Jews were defeated and 30,000 sold into slavery.\n\nThe Jewish temple was to receive its last and most spectacular upgrade under King Herod Antipater “The Great” of Judea in 19 BC. The new temple was a colossal building that was said to have struck awe in travellers from all over the known world. Since 36 BC, Herod (not a Jew himself) was having problems with anti-Greeco-Roman sentiment amongst his Jewish subjects and believed the upgrading / rebuilding of the then standing temple would greatly relieve some of the tension. But in 6 BC he further alienated himself by allowing the Romans, on whom he had become dependant, to set their military standards in the temple.

    When Herod Antipater died in 4 AD and his son Herod Archelaus took the thrown, the country was on the brink of rebellion. When two popular religious teachers (Judas and Matthias) tried to remove the Roman standards, Herod Archelaus had the two burnt at the stake. As soon as Herod Archelaus departed for Rome to have his crown ‘legitimsied’, the Jews rebelled. The Romans had to dispatch Publius Quinctilius Varus and a large Roman army to wrest control back. Two thousand Jewish leaders were said to have been crucified. Herod Archelaus decided to personally take revenge on his return and after another large rebellion led by Judas the Galilean, Herod Archelaus was exiled by Rome and Judea became a Roman province. But the trouble didn’t abate when in 11 AD a large number of Jews under Judas of Gamala revolted and were only put down after several years of hard fighting.

    The Jews were again angered when in 39 AD when Emperor Caligula declared himself a god and ordered that his statue be set up in the Jewish Temple. In 45 AD the Jews were further roused when the Roman Procurator Gessius Florus pillaged the temple treasury and extorted the Jewish people for personal gain. When Hellenists marched into a synague in Caesarea in 66 AD to slay a pig whilst the local Greek speaking Roman garrison looked on, the Jews retaliated en masse. Eliezar ben Hanania ceased prayers and sacrifices for the Roman Emperor at the temple in Jerusalem. Having then gathered a large force of Jews he subsequently led a successful attack on the Roman garrison stationed in the city. When the 12th Legion was sent to put down the riot, they were massacred.

    The riot soon turned into a full scale war for freedom from foreign power. The war (66–73 AD) only ended when a huge Roman force under Titus stormed Jerusalem and destroyed the Jewish temple on August 5th 70 AD. 100,000 Jews died in the assault, 100,000 were sold into slavery and 2,500 used to feed the wild animals in the coloseum. In total, the war had cost 1.3 million Jewish lives but it had cost the Romans as well. To celebtrate this great victory, coins were struct and an arch erected depicting the temple treasures being paraded through Rome.

    The destruction of the temple sparked another Jewish war of independance, the ‘Kitos War’ (115-117 AD). Emperor Hadrian visited Jerusalem in 130 AD and announced a new pagan temple to Jupiter was to be built on the temple site and in 132 AD Jerusalem was renamed Aelia Capitolina, and circumcision was outlawed. These actions incited the Jews to launched their third and final attempt to gain independence from Rome. The Bar Kokhba’s revolt (132-135 AD) was a bloody / rutheless afair and the Romans were forced to commit more troops than they had under Titus. So costly was the campaign that the Roman generals’ report to the Roman Senate omitted the customary statement “I and my army are well.” This third war had cost the Jews 985 villages and 50 fortified towns being razed to the ground with a further 580,000 killed.\n\n

    Emperor Hadrian hence forth attempted to remove all trace of the Jews, their religion and presence. Jews were forbidden to enter Aelia Capitolina (Jerusalem), Jewish religious texts (Torah) and Calendars were outlawed and relgious scholars put to death. A statue of himself was set up aside that of Jupiter on the site of the temple and Judea was renamed Syria Palaestina as an insulting reminder of the anicent Jewish enemies, the Philistines. With the passing of Hadrian, the Jews were allowed to enter the city once a year to mourn the destruction of the temple (at what was later to be called the ‘Wailing Wall’). This is the Jewish ‘Tisha B’Av’ day of mourning.

  7. The ability of the Jews in a war and in a fight is an interesting subject to study. For one thing, as I heard it described this way, Jews are like the patron at a bar in which a drunk guy comes up to and starts wailing up. The Jews kick the drunk guy’s arse and boots him out the door. When the drunk guy wakes up, he goes back in for round two. This is how Jews fight their wars, assuming they win them.

    The military history perspective is that the Jews are great guerrilla fighters, even capable of delaying the Nazi advance in Warsaw and eliminating Roman legions. Unlike most guerrilla fighters, the Jews fight best in the cities rather than the hills. Given the advent of 24 hour propaganda turned towards child murdering rampages by Palestinians, the Jewish advantage in the cities is no longer valid anymore. In fact, US Marines have outpaced Jewish MOUT battles, because of Fallujah 1/2.

    The key ingredient is religion or rather Jewish self-identity. It is the Jewish self-identity that is nominally the cause of why the Jews back down and submit to their oppressors. The funny thing is that Jewish identity is what caused the Jews to attempt to take on empires far larger and military stronger than they, back when Judaism was fresh and mighty.

    Another quirk is the internal conflict between Secular Jews and more orthodox Jews, sort of like the conflict between Left and conservative here in the US. This mirrors that one civil war mentioned before, about how Crassus was able to get inside Jerusalem and loot the temple for his war against Caesar because of internal Jewish rivalries. It also provides an interesting analogy for how if the American network of 50 states is the descendant of the Roman Empire, then the Jewish people are still rebelling against the Roman Empire. When Nixon supported Israel when the Arabs attacked, most Jews inside America were still going to vote Democrat.

    Why do Jews constantly seek to rebel against nations and peoples that might become their protectors? Caligula was crazy, but Rome had a history of leaving local barbarian religions in place. Why not wait out the Roman Emperor’s life span, given that there were rebellions in Britain that would take the eyes of Rome off Jerusalem? And in the end, why do Jews take the side of people that wish them harm, such as Crassus and the Democrats?

    I don’t have the answers. The Jews are not like Americans. We assimilate and pool our resources so that with each new addition, America becomes stronger. The Jews are incapable of adopting foreign customs and ways into their political and social identity matrix. They co-exist with other people only to the extent in which other people leave the Jewish religion alone.

    America, on the other hand, co-exists with everybody regardless of religion because like Rome, America resolves religious and doctrinal conflicts through Total War.

    The Jews, before the New Testament, did try their hand at Total War apparently. But it never paid out for them. So perhaps that is why they abandoned it for all time. Not just because they couldn’t do it anymore, but because they no longer accept the validity of total war. American version or not.

    And if you don’t accept the validity of Total War, then how do you expect to defeat an enemy like the Palestinians, who like the Romans, will Totally Wipe you out when you are in their way?

  8. They co-exist with other people only to the extent in which other people leave the Jewish religion alone.

    And that is why America is a great place for them and why they are productive and respected citizens here. We leave their religious beliefs alone.

    After America stopped expanding, Total War was only used on Japan and Germany. Then it stopped. When I relate America to Total War, I am refering to early pioneer days when America was still expanding, like the Roman Republic. In those days, total war was more like clan warfare in which the resources of the clan is placed against their enemies. The idea that an entire nation’s resources can be devoted to warfare, essentially, in order to defeat and destroy enemies, only came about in the Civil War and in Napoleon’s conquests.

    In a way, a nation or a people must have a Total War before they can use total war. Rome had the 2nd Punic War and that set the template for how things eventually developed for Rome’s Republic and Empire periods. Rome had gotten rid of the barbarians in Spain and Gaul, but not the Germans. Those Germans are militarily fierce.

    In the end, the point is that Israel’s history does not contain any Total Wars by my recollection. Their wars with the Arabs were all limited, with no unconditional surrenders or obliteration of the enemy population and political system. Compare this with America’s history of wars, including the systemic elimination of Indian holdouts and raiding groups, by essentially burning their crops and shooting their horses. This solved the problem, like it solved the issue of slavery, fascism, and Japanese military rule.

    Israel has an opportunity here to show us how to wage war against Palestinians and Philistines. They have the power. They are not beholden to the Roman Empire, the Ptolemaic Dynasty, or the Seleucids. Israel obeys the UN, the closest empire system holding Israel back, because it wants to obey the UN, not because the Un has the power to crush Israeli independent actions. Same thing with Bush in 2003. Went to the UN cause he wanted to, not cause the Un forced him to.

    Even though it might be irrational for Americans to argue about “should have been, would have been” concerning Iraq and Vietnam, there’s still some excuses for such fence sitting if only because terrorist actions have been unsuccessful at killing American children. Israel doesn’t have that excuse. American settlers set up posse s to kill people that have been killing their children. Israelis just sit back and let their so called elites take care of things? Is this the 21st century assisted suicide fad or what?

    It does not make sense that Jews would go on rampages because their religious stuff have been violated, but sit back and pray for peace when their children are getting torn apart in the streets. Heck, even in Warsaw a lot of the Jews didn’t want to fight until it was too late.

    Maybe I’m being unfair in comparing the Jews of 2,000 years ago to the Jews of now, but since the US Marines are essentially a better and larger re-incarnation of the Spartans and Roman legions, I don’t see why it should be unfair.

    Why do I keep writing about this subject anyways? Probably because the connection between Rome and Judea was never really clear until one studied both at the same time. This was the time period in which the Bible events took place, after all.

  9. For what it is worth, here is a video of Chavez saying he does coca PASTE daily.
    http://housley.blogs.foxnews.com/2008/01/21/chavez-chews-coca/

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