Monday, April 23, 2007

Chavez, Socialism and Freedom of speech???

Thousands of Venezuelans have taken to the streets of Caracas in protest at the president's decision to close the country's oldest private TV network.
Mr Chavez's supporters say Radio Caracas Television (RCTV) backed a 2002 coup which briefly ousted him. But the country's opposition say the decision to close the network is an attempt to silence Mr Chavez's critics.

"Freedom of speech is a right, as is the right to be informed," said 72-year-old Pablo Mosco from the capital's Catia slum district.

"What will happen to Venezuela is one of its voices for people to come here and give out their expressions, their opinion [...] will be closed down and this is, I believe, a final step for democracy in Venezuela," said Moira Sanchez, from RCTV's legal team.

The government has offered jobs to staff in a new state-run TV station which will replace RCTV but most say they will refuse them.

The BBC's James Ingham, in Caracas, says that this is shaping up to be a fight between a government that is increasing its control of the country and those who feel their freedom is being taken away.

Well, golly gee there Hayzoos, did you think when you doofuses gave the man the power to do whatever he wanted, he'd keep a soft spot for his detractors? Did you think he'd give the country back when he was done? Democratic rights in a socialist country, run by a melagomaniac dictator? And you don't see a problem? Damn, how did you people get your own country anyway?

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

Truly, a season for miracles

BERLIN - A German army instructor ordered a soldier to envision himself in New York City facing hostile blacks while firing his machine gun, a video that aired Saturday on national television showed.
The clip shows an instructor and a soldier in camouflage uniforms in a forest. The instructor tells the soldier, “You are in the Bronx. A black van is stopping in front of you. Three African-Americans are getting out and they are insulting your mother in the worst ways. ... Act.”
The soldier fires his machine gun several times and yells an obscenity several times in English. The instructor then tells the soldier to curse even louder.

The video is the latest embarrassment for the German army. Eighteen army instructors are currently on trial for allegedly abusing and humiliating 163 recruits in 2004. Last year, newspapers published photos of German soldiers in Afghanistan posing with a skulls — including one who exposed himself while holding a skull.
The president of the Bronx, the New York City borough that the army instructor referred to in his directions to the soldier, demanded an apology from the German military and said the clip “indicates that bias and assumptions and racism is alive and well around the world.”

The Rev. Al Sharpton said he was outraged that Germans were “depicting blacks as target practice.”
“I think this is an incredibly racist kind of insult to African-Americans and it speaks to the kind of institutional racism that people think we are hallucinating about,” he said.
The existence of the video was first reported on the home page of the German news magazine Stern on Friday and excerpts were aired on the news television channel n-tv on Saturday.

Ahh yes. German reunification and the wonderful sentiments of our European allies. You know, that hotbed of culture and civility our liberals seem to envy so much? And finally a milestone for the Dalt. For the first and quite possibly only time, I actually find myself agreeing with Big Al (oooh, that's gonna leave a mark)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Violations? By WHO?

Group Decries Marines in Afghan Shooting April 14, 2007 By FISNIK ABRASHI (AP)
A U.S. Marine unit broke international humanitarian law by using excessive force during a shooting spree last month that left 12 people dead, an Afghan human rights group said in a report Saturday.
The troops fired indiscriminately at pedestrians, people in cars, public buses and taxis in six different locations along a 10-mile stretch of road in Nangahar province after an explosives-rigged minivan crashed into their convoy on March 4, according to the report by Afghanistan's Independent Human Rights Commission.
Six people were killed near the blast site, while the other six died on the road as the troops sped away, said Ahmad Nader Nadery, the group's spokesman.
The dead included a 1-year-old boy, a 4-year-old girl and three women, the report said. Thirty-five people were wounded in the shootings.
"In failing to distinguish between civilians and legitimate military targets the U.S. Marines Corps Special Forces employed indiscriminate force," the report said. "Their actions thus constitute a serious violation of international humanitarian law standards."
The group said its report was based on interviews with victims and their families, witnesses, local community leaders, hospital officials and police.
A U.S. military commander has also determined that the Marines used excessive force and referred the case for possible criminal inquiry, a senior U.S. defense official told The Associated Press on Wednesday.
U.S. military officials said after the incident that the suicide attack was part of an ambush that included militant gunmen shooting at Marines, which may have caused some of the civilian casualties.

Oh my goodness! 12 civilians killed in a fire fight started in their country by their countrymen.?
"In failing to distinguish between civilians and legitimate military targets the U.S. Marines Corps Special Forces employed indiscriminate force," the report said. "Their actions thus constitute a serious violation of international humanitarian law standards."
What about the terrorist's attacks against civilians? Where are these "Afgan human rights groups" and others when these attacks take place? Where were they when the Taliban forces siezed control of their country, hijacked their religion, subjugated their population? Most importantly. when are we going to learn that no matter what we do to help, we will not be appreciated, but reviled, not only by those who asked for our help, but by our own citizens? One cannot "support the troops" without supporting their mission, which is decided by their leaders, who are chosen by a representative majority of Americans. Like their decisions or not, our leaders are duly elected and we should support them until such time as they are replaced by lawful elections. Anything else is NOT "supporting the troops." It is merely lying to disguise an agenda. You decide whose it is, and what they plan.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

"Maybe" it's too late already

Iran May Be (?) Helping Iraqis Build Bombs April 11, 2007 BAGHDAD (AP)

1.)Iranian intelligence operatives have been training Iraqi fighters inside Iran on how to use and assemble deadly roadside bombs known as EFPs, the U.S. military spokesman said Wednesday.
2.)Commanders of a splinter group inside the Shiite Mahdi Army militia have told The Associated Press that there are as many as 4,000 members of their organization that were trained in Iran and that they have stockpiles of EFPs, a weapon that causes great uneasiness among U.S. forces here because they penetrate heavily armored vehicles.

3.)U.S. military spokesman Maj. Gen. William Caldwell would not say how many militia fighters had been trained in Iran but said that questioning of fighters captured as recently as this month confirmed many had been in Iranian training camps

1. The military spokesman says they ARE.
2. Commanders of a Shiite militia say they ARE.
3. Questioned militia fighters say they ARE.

Why the hell does the AP headline say they "may be"??
Well, "maybe" they've gotten away with this crap for too long. "Maybe" the rest of the world thinks it's ok. "Maybe" we'll all just let them keep it going until there's a mushroom cloud over Israel or London or New York. Do you think that then "maybe" we might just do something?
"Maybe", but won't it be too late?

Monday, April 09, 2007

Stupid is International

Daily Mail , London; Garri Holness, 39, is one of the Britons in a bad place at the time of the July 2005 subway bombings, and he suffered the loss of a leg, for which government programs compensated him with more than 100,000 British pounds (about $190,000). That is more than 10 times the amount of government compensation (in 2005 pounds) received by each of the two teenage girls from a vicious 1985 gang rape that Holness was convicted of participating in (and for which he served seven years in prison).

And the libs say everything is more civilized in Europe...

BC-Wizard of Id Cartoonist Johnny Hart passes

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Cartoonist Johnny Hart, whose award-winning "B.C." comic strip appeared in more than 1,300 newspapers worldwide, has died. He was 76. He won numerous awards for his work, including the National Cartoonist Society's prestigious Reuben Award twice for Cartoonist of the Year. Later in his career, some of Hart's cartoons had religious themes, a reflection of his own Christian faith. That sometimes led to controversy.
"He had such an emphasis on kindness, generosity, and patience," said Richard Newcombe, founder and president of Creators Syndicate in Los Angeles

We'll miss you Johnny.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Why did they have to die?

A mother asked President Bush,
"Why did my son have to die in Iraq?"
Another mother asked President Kennedy,
"Why did my son have to die in Viet Nam?"
Another mother asked President Truman,
"Why did my son have to die in Korea?
Another mother asked President F. D. Roosevelt,
"Why did my son have to die at Iwo Jima?"
Another mother asked President W. Wilson,
"Why did my son have to die on a battlefield in France?"
Yet another mother asked President Lincoln,
"Why did my son have to die at Gettysburg?"
And yet another mother asked President G. Washington,
"Why did my son have to die near Valley Forge?"
Then long, long ago, a mother asked...
"Heavenly Father, why did my Son have to die
on a cross outside of Jerusalem?"
The answers to all these are similar --
"So that others may have life
and dwell in peace, happiness and freedom."

This was emailed to me with no author and I thought
the magnitude and the simplicity was awesome


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Monday, April 02, 2007

To finally go where he had gone before

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — The ashes of James Doohan, who played chief engineer Montgomery "Scotty" Scott on the original "Star Trek" TV series, have been loaded into a rocket that is set to launch in New Mexico later this month.
The remains of Doohan, Mercury astronaut Gordon Cooper and some 200 others were loaded into the rocket Friday by Charles Chafer, chief executive of Celestis, a Texas company that contracts with rocket firms to send cremated remains into space.
"And we're ready to go," Chafer said after inserting the silver canister.
Jerry Larson, president of Connecticut-based UP Aerospace Inc., said the rocket will be launched April 28.

What more needs be said? Gene Roddenberry led the way in 1997, his remains sent into in space. I loved the show growing up. It was a simpler time with simple values; Truth, Faith and the idea that we will one day become the people we aspire to be. May we all "boldly go"

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