PBS’ Frontline program "The War Behind Closed Door…

PBS’ Frontline program “The War Behind Closed Doors” is a chilling analysis of the insane ideology justifying – or rationalizing – the ‘war without end’ proposed by W.’s Cold-War-hawk-reject handlers. I use the word insane in its clinical sense. All al-Qaeda needs to hear is that the Christian fundamentalist “Crusader” regime in Washington plans to wage a literal “battle for the future of the Muslim world,” to quote last Fall’s published Dubya Doctrine. By contrast, ‘Blood For Oil’ sounds defensible!

Just what kind of “free and open societies” do you think these people would like to see all around the world – in the Mideast, Africa, Latin America, Asia, the Caribbean? Their New World Order can reasonably be expected to mirror the one they’ve established here in the last 3 years (or more!): corporatist, elitist, exploitive, subservient to themselves and their (other) U.S. Big Business interests, anti-labor, anti-poor, anti-disabled, anti-environment, anti-woman, anti-gay, anti-liberal, Evangelical, racist, classist – Earth as Ronald Reagan’s America writ large.

If this all sounds familiar, remember that this clique mired us in Central America for a generation, not to mention South America, Marcos’ Philippines, near-dictatorships at the time in Taiwan and South Korea…. Such a structure is called The National Security State. In a word, not even “neo-conservative,” but NEO-FASCIST. A more clear and present example is Ariel Sharon’s Israel – a democratic republic on paper, but when push comes to shove, that paper gets moved to the side. For that matter, maybe before we bring democracy to Iraq, we should restore democracy to America! W. is one to talk about “legitimate government”….

Yes, it’s the American Cold-Warriors’ revenge against the whole planet. Don’t doubt that U.S./Bushie vested interests will trump – nay, shape – “reform” in other countries, just like here. Banana Republics, Banana Planet. Pax Americana will have the ironic, fatalistic ring that Pax Romana had 2000 years ago – or as the Prophet Jeremiah said another time, “You cry ‘Peace, Peace,’ when there is no peace!” EIN SHALOM!

How can the world be saved from the paranoid, tunnel-visioned, arrogant, megalomaniacal anachronism of Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Kristol, et al., and the Crusading messianism of the least qualified ‘savior’ the world has ever seen, George W. Bush? Is it Constitutionally possible to sack an entire Administration overcome with clinical mental illness and mental incompetency? Simultaneously impeach the President, VP, and Cabinet? Make Hastert President – the wrestling coach?!!

I want to believe that they truly believe what they have in mind is for the best. “What’s good for GM is good for America.” But they are blind and deaf. “What you notice depends on who you are” (Douglas Adams). Trickle-down “voodoo economics” has become trickle-down foreign policy. But the world isn’t gonna take kindly to being trickled on! We’ll all wish for the relative peace – er, non-war – and stability of the Cold War indeed. They’ve been looking for an enemy to scare us with since they spent Eastern Europe into a bankruptcy it may take a century to get over, and their new Soviet Union is World Islam!

For that matter, what kind of Islam would they allow to survive, un-converted to (conservative) Christianity? The kind they made common cause with in Beijing and Cairo and with the Vatican.

What’s the alternative? Maybe our European NATO Allies understand a multilateral world better than the Bushies do because they’ve been experimenting with it “big time” for half a century in what has become the European Union. Messy, difficult, pluralistic, time-consuming, yet One when it counts. Even the Euro seems to be getting over its initial freefall. All that scares the bejesus – pun intended – out of Christian fundamentalists, who, if they’re not calling all the shots, feel oppressed, because their vision, like their god, is so monolithic, admitting no uncertainty, process, g/Grace, improvement, real freedom, or other points-of-view – all protestations to the contrary notwithstanding. And they complain about Catholicism and “the One World State”! (Though not all Christian fundamentalists are Protestants, either. Pat “Culture War” Buchanan is a Catholic, and there are nasty Eastern Orthodox too.)

But if America takes 20th-century tools and ‘tudes into a 21st-century world that is already markedly different, the suffering we will inflict and suffer may well be worse than ever before. “A New American Century”? Hardly.

W. appears to be learning international relations …

W. appears to be learning international relations from Ariel Sharon.—Allies are to be coddled and cultivated, even in-person. Not browbeaten and abused. W. may not be able to find Europe on a map, but if he was a true president (which he isn’t) he’d have gone over there to meet with Prime Ministers months ago. Instead we have Colin Powell’s clenched fists in the UN Security Council. (Did you catch that picture?!) I actually might understand “enforcement” in Iraq, but what’s this about “evidence” being based on a 12-year-old grad school paper???

In any case, “enforcement” at what cost? World War III? A renewal of medieval Crusades and Anti-Crusades, that millenium-long conflict between “Christendom” and “Islam”??? I don’t believe in W.’s Christendom, ie, Fundamentalist Protestant rigorist moralist.

It’s Foreign Relations, Stupid!

Israel Has Long Since Worn Out Its Welcome on the …

Israel Has Long Since Worn Out Its Welcome on the World Stage—Israel is so bold in its dealings with the Arabs because it knows it can rely on the USA Israel lobby and all those billions from Washington. If there is to be peace in Israel/Palestine, Washington must put Tel Aviv on a “short leash,” or even condition any future aid on cooperation for peace. Teach Sharon some humility, civilize him. Right now he has no reason to cooperate, as he obviously prefers to rule a Fascist Police State and provoke desperate Palestinians. Last time he invaded Haram al-Sharif; next time he may bomb it. No More Special Rights for Israel! It’s time they joined the rest of the world community of civil international relations.

I’m not an anti-Semite. I love Semites, both Jews and Arabs, Christian and Muslim. But Israel costs too much. Is it really worth World War III?

Palestinian Independence Day???—Today Israel’s H…

Palestinian Independence Day???—Today Israel’s High Court rejected a request to order the State to provide Palestinians throughout the Illegally Occupied Territories with gas masks in the event of war with Iraq, just the same as they are being provided to others under the Israeli flag. By declining to protect the Palestinians, in this Peace Studies scholar’s opinion, Israel has forfeited sovereignty over them in favor of the (Israeli-paralyzed) Palestinian National Authority, President Arafat, and his to-be-named Prime Minister. Let the world take note!

Here comes the Two-Tier European Union Irish voter…

The White House Hasn’t Seen This Much Snow…—…..

The White House Hasn’t Seen This Much Snow…—…since Poppy’s coke bust!

COLUMBIA II If the latest from AOL/TIME Magazine …


If the latest from AOL/TIME Magazine is any indication, the bloodbath after Saturday morning’s 200,000 feet up, has begun. The astronauts’ bodies are barely cold, and the pundits and politicians have already started to consume each other in a frenzy that would make a cannibal blush. Hindsight is always 20/20, or so goes the proverb, but the one-upmanship we’re about to see proves the other: if we take an eye for an eye we’ll all end up blind. If popular science-fiction is right, space travel will still be dangerous even in the 24th century. Space Shuttles seem to explode spectacularly, but is losing two in 22 years a horrible, hopeless track record? God willing we should lose none; but that’s not the universe God has created, not yet anyway. The America, the humanity, the world, for which those 14 courageous space travelers laid down their lives in 1986 and 2003, would come together, grieve together, and then build a better future together – better space vehicles for people and payloads, for experiments and human experiences, incorporating the scientific advances of the last generation since these were planned for and (mostly) constructed. (For NASA to recently decide the current Shuttles were going to stay safely in service for another 18 years, somebody definitely had to have “inhaled.”) We want to find out what precisely happened Saturday, if we can, in order to prevent it from happening with the other three Shuttles, but also with future craft. NASA must indeed revive the design process for the next generation of orbital/sub-orbital service-and-transport vehicles, and do it in collaboration with the investigations now getting under way. Congress and the White House must provide the funds required. And opinion leaders must look for a constructive vision, not cannibalism.

Perhaps out of our recent losses we need to set ourselves a grand, positive, currently-unreachable goal. When President Kennedy proposed to go to the Moon within ten years, nobody knew how it was going to happen. But we made it happen. Some claim the International Space Station is a white elephant, but how about a permanent human base on the Moon, or a manned-and-womanned round trip to the surface of Mars, within 15 years? even a united, international (ad)venture?

One big reason for these first Space Shuttles, it’s easy to forget, was to open-up space to routine, non-governmental interests, even potentially for profit. (One was named Enterprise!) At least, many Shuttle trips were hoped to pay for themselves, lofting private, industrial experiments into orbit. If we’ve learned nothing else from the post-Apollo years, we’ve learned that profit, or even just “paying its way,” as ideas, don’t inspire, don’t stir the human heart, as much as “one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” or even the fascinating, vivid photographs of Mars which Pathfinder Sojourner Truth gave us a few summers ago, that kept us glued to our TV and computer screens. For many human generations to come, may the exploration of space be “not just a job, but an adventure.” Or to quote someone else: “To Boldly Go Where No One Has Gone Before.”

WE MUST NOT ABANDON the Space Program, the Space S…

WE MUST NOT ABANDON the Space Program, the Space Station, etc. Just like people in the military, astronauts risk their lives. We’re a long ways from Star Trek just yet. There are alternatives for the short term: robot supply ships like the one that just took off from Baikonur, Russian spacecraft substitutes for the Shuttle, maybe even the Europeans with their rockets in French Guiana. If the fuel tank at Columbia’s takeoff was too old, scrap that last old tank remaining; don’t use it! And a note to the designers of the next-generation Shuttle: don’t rely on shakey heat tiles! Those damned things have been a problem since day one, 20+ years ago! There’s gotta be a better way. And a real escape system, please?!?!?!?!?!

Space Shuttle COLUMBIA—Israeli plot?: ‘Operation…

Space Shuttle COLUMBIA—Israeli plot?: ‘Operation “Smoking Gun”‘ to nail the Palestinians and/or Iraq??? At this point I wouldn’t even put it past W. and/or his handlers, just like 9/11….