From the minute the first bombs fell in the early hours of March 20 in Baghdad it was the first duty of the Left to put its failed anti-war argument aside and put its shoulders to the wheel of building a properly functioning democratic Iraqi state.More >>
My point is: enough with the fixations on aboriginal hyper-authenticity and play-acting in period costume already. It is less a challenge to the status quo than a retrenchment of the status quo. There’s nothing new about this. It is a panoply of iterations in an Imaginary Indian Complex that is only as traditional as the tradition that white people began when they first started holding up funhouse mirrors for aboriginal people to see themselves in.
In that order, if you please. It's time for Western nations and their citizenry to wake the hell up. We've been down this road of slavish "pacifism" and appeasement to fascists before and thankfully regained our senses in time to prevent the worst. Is there still hope that the international community can regain its wits when it comes to the Taliban and their Pakistani paymasters? Terry Glavin writes in the Ottawa Citizen:
The proper way to approach the Taliban is to treat them for what they are — the front-line shock troops of a grimly determined, extremist and fanatical proxy of the Pakistani military, Saleh said. “So, why would you even talk to the proxy? Talk to their masters. Talk to the Pakistanis.”
To redeem the enormous investments countries like Canada have made in Afghanistan, the NATO countries should renew their early commitments to the increasingly disenfranchised, pro-democracy Afghan majority, Saleh said. This will have to include leaving Afghanistan with more than just police stations and battalions of Afghan soldiers capable of dealing only with internal violence. Afghanistan’s greater need is the capacity to defend itself against its neighbours, primarily the regime in Pakistan....More >>
Yet another invented term being used to silence criticism of Chinese state-owned firms and its billionaire elites trying to get away with the kind of shenanigans that ought to make true "anti-imperalists" blush with embarassment. Terry Glavin writes:
Beijing’s taxis have had their rear window cranks removed lest reformists take the advantage of a cab ride to heave out leaflets. Kite flying has been banned. The usual Internet firewalls have been so heavily armoured that even “18th party congress” searches are blocked. Uncounted thousands of petitioners, activists and lawyers have been rounded up, subjected to house arrest, confined in detention centres and imprisoned in labour camps.
Zhou Yongkang, the grimy security minister overseeing these obscenities, just happens to be the former boss of the China National Petroleum Corporation — banker to the vampires who run Syria, Tehran and Uzbekistan, and now, via its subsidiary Petro-China, an emerging power in Alberta’s oilsands. Small world, isn’t it?
This isn’t about a “clash of civilizations.” We should all know by now that the struggle for the final extinction of slavery is an existential contest between civilization and barbarism. There is no “Muslim threat” to civilization. The threat comes from those of civilization’s most privileged beneficiaries. It comes most lethally from those among us who would apologize and pander to the ruling-class barbarians in black turbans and in medal-bedecked uniforms who already hold the citizens of the “Muslim world” hostage.
Not only was Canada right to send the Iranian diplomatic corps packing; we were long overdue to give up this farce that required "Canadian diplomats to smile when Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khameini’s appointments secretaries spit in their faces," notes Terry Glavin in today's Ottawa Citizen.
Glavin takes direct aim at career Foreign Affairs bureaucrat Paul Heinbecker and his friends who have helped lead us down the garden path. We're done making nice with theocratic fascists intent on sparking the next world war.
My contention was that the rousting of Tehran’s agents from their Ottawa compound on Metcalfe Street and the shuttering our useless embassy in Tehran is at least a good start, and perhaps we might now turn to some more effective means of isolating, containing and ultimately assisting in the overthrow of the Khomeinist despotism that is the cause of all this grief in the first place. I’m hardly going to apologize for holding that view.
Heinbecker pleads for keeping diplomats to the fore because “we need to bear witness to the horrors.” Well no, actually, some of us would rather skip the horrors altogether, thanks. Something like 26,000 Syrians have already been slaughtered. The great Iranian people
The West appear to be in a self-induced coma, notes Terry Glavin in the Ottawa Citizen:
Whatever happened to “the West,” anyway? The Russians, laughing at Hillary Clinton while they ship attack-helicopters to the crazed Baathist ophthalmologist Bashar al-Assad in Damascus, seem to have the answer to that question. You can date its disappearance to the Crash of 2008 or to the election of Barack Obama in 2009, as you please, but in any case it’s not there anymore. “The West no longer exists as a political community, as Russia has come to know it,” the astute Fyodor Lukyanov, editor of Russia in Global Affairs, pointed out the other day.
As US President Obama tries to get the Karzai regime in Afghanistan to "reconcile" with the Taliban in preparation for an American withdrawal, other countries are not obliged to go along with it. From Terry Glavin:
If all President Obama sees in Afghanistan is a place to put a residual NATO military force to more confidently reassure American voters that he’s keeping them safe from the jihadist mayhem of outfits like al Qaeda, that’s his business, but again, sorry, Mr. President. That’s not what Canadian taxpayers are for.
Canada never intended that the entire 50-nation International Security Assistance Force project in Afghanistan be merely the means by which the White House forces Afghans to “reconcile” with the Taliban. The exit strategy the White House expects its NATO allies to subsidize is not a strategy, unless that’s what you call a ruse by which the United States puts off its overdue reckoning with the extortionists and gangsters who run Pakistan and who have been the cause of Afghanistan’s agonies all along.
“Tonight, I’d like to tell you how we will complete our mission and end the war in Afghanistan,” Obama said Tuesday. We’re still waiting.
That's the Washington Post's Eugene Robinson on why Americans can't understand what their president can't explain, or maybe it's why Americans can't explain what their president can't understand. In any case, it's about unanswered questions surrounding Barack Obama's surprise media-availability sessions in Afghanistan this week.
This might be at least partly the source of the confusion: "And so 10 years ago the United States and our allies went to war to make sure that al-Qaida could never again use this country to launch attacks against us." Thus spake Obama at Baghram. In fact, for the "allies" among the UN_mandated, NATO-led 47-member ISAF military coalition, the whole point has not been to make America safe from al-Qaida. The United States itself has had (or at least once had) rather more Afghanistan-related reasons to involve its soldiers in Afghanistan too. Like building a sovereign and democratic UN member state where there was just a big black hole, for instance. Whatever happened to that, anyway?