There’s Only So Many Ways You Can Throw Sh_t Up Against A Wall

There’s Only So Many Ways You Can Throw Shit Up Against A Wall …….

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I’m not one to always jump unto the political bandwagon but what’s now happening in the country of Egypt ought to act as a reminder why it is that the US continues to be the pimple on the ass of an elephant as it relates to its foreign policy . Ever since the death of the country’s former President Anwar Sadat to a assassin’s bullet the country has tied itself to the corrupt government of Sadat’s successor Hosni Mubarak . What might be even more galling is the very fact that after the events of 9/11 when 22 terrorists saw fit to attack the country in a pre-emptive strike which took the lives of over 3,000 innocent victims the US still rallied and showed support for Egypt even though 14 of the twenty two terrorists who were part of this heinous atrocity were from that country. The remaining 8 terrorists were from the country of Saudi Arabia another we’re told a so called ally of the United States and its war on terror. At no time did the US seek to cut off diplomatic ties with either country but instead simply continued its ties with both.

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Slide show for your perusal .

Hosni Mubarak in his tenure has rarely been opposed in terms of when he sought re-election during his reign as President as any opposition from within was viewed as a form of blatantly disavowing the country’s path under Mubarak and his policies. Now you can see the reason why the form of democracy now being espoused in the country has been a charade and the fact that the United States had thrown its support behind Mubarak over the years begs the question what the hell has the country been thinking during that time ? Now there are those who’ll say we need Egypt because as an ally , and logistically because of where the country lies and the very fact that the Suez Canal is the primary route for 70% of the world’s oil that leaves the Arab peninsular for the Western market. There in a nutshell sums up the primary reason for the United States’ interest in the region and reason for the Egypt to remain a with some form of leadership . Even if it is one that has a rather dubious form of democracy and ties to a number of organizations that many in the West view to radical.

Stability can be deceiving when one considers how corrupt the Mubarak regime has been and the very fact that the rule of law isn’t at all adhered to . The Egyptian judiciary is corrupt and the defense attorneys aren’t always to defend their clients effectively because there’s a propensity for the judges to align themselves with the prosecution and bribes shall we say that tend play its part in any decision that’s brought down as a verdict by a judge ? And this is what the US government would have us believe is a suitable form of democracy to throw its weight behind and support ? Laughable and ludicrous isn’t it ? But then again if memory serves me correct President George W Bush did once make the statement that the Sudan’s __ President Omar Al-Bashir was a leader who could be trusted . And in the Sudan some 2 1/2-3 million victims over the last decade have lost their lives to the genocide inflicted by Bashir’s security forces and that of the Janjaweed while the rest of the world seemingly looked on .

Mubarak has been President of the country for almost three decades and during his reign there has been no end of political corruption and no end of his autocratic rule. His government has been essentially one filled with a close inner circle of friends and family. Political reform if any has been minuscule but at the same time the West and in particular the United States views the country as a trusted ally in the Middle East merely because it is one of only two Arab countries in the region that actually recognizes Israel’s right to exist and who openly has diplomatic relations with that country. The other country who joins Egypt in its recognition of the state is that of Jordan which is ruled by King Abdullah .

Now for the past three decades Egypt , other than Israel have been the largest recipient of US donor aid of which the State Dept confirms that the figure has been in excess of $68 billion ($68,000,000,000,000). And while no one can actually show how this money has actually been spent we can be sure that much of it has found its way into the pockets of the Mubarak cabinet and that of his closest allies while the country itself is in an economic mess. Israel itself is not without with the largess of the United States also being the recipient of donor aid to the tune of approximately on average $3.5 billion (3,500,000,000) a year. What I’d like to know is what the US gets in return in terms of reciprocity while taxpayers’ monies are being sent to the countries in question ? Has there really been any form political or economic reform in Egypt much less Israel given the fact that the Palestinian situation each year becomes a mess that the parties involved seek an amicable accord to ?

Egypt’s capital city of Cairo has become the lightning rod and epicenter for the protests now taking part in and across the country. While this has all fomented the unrest not seen in the Arab world of this seismic in nature since Iran erupted which led to the overthrow of the Shah of Iran (Reza Pehlavi ) . In his stead the country came under the reign of the Islamic clerics led by the Ayatollah Khomeini . And as we know the country is now seen as a ‘pariah’ in the West and the conduit of terrorism as a backer of the group Hezbollah .

In the aftermath of 9/11 President Bush and his cabinet did little to seek answers from either Egypt or Saudi Arabia but yet we’re led to believe that both countries were of great assistance to the country in seeking out members of Al Qaeda , the terrorist organization actually responsible for the atrocity . Bush’s successor Barack Obama has been making statements that add little to the perspective other than to say that he supports the rights of the Egyptian people to their freedom of expression while at the same stating that he believes that Mubarak will use this as a chance to make the changes needed, bring about reform and stability back the country. If after three decades that has never been done what makes the President now believe that with the death of almost 100 Egyptian civilians and in excess of 2,000 injured that things are now about to change ? Certainly with Secretary of State —- Hillary Clinton essentially adding nothing to this at all from her own perspective other than to reiterate the President’s statements it leads me to believe that there’ll be little change if any made by Mubarak’s government.

US foreign policy over the years has bordered on being inept and downright disgraceful ! The country suborns dictatorial regimes but then chooses then uses oxymoronic tones questioning countries such as Myanmar (formerly Burma) , Iran , and Somalia , Sudan and Yemen . It wouldn’t be that bad were it not for the fact that these countries if anything in terms of transparency with regard to their respective political process isn’t that much worse than that of Egypt . And what might be even more thought provoking is that while the US hid behind their nonsensical stance that they didn’t suborn the interdiction and torture of US citizens or that of other nationals who were arrested under the suspicion of being terrorists , it was to countries such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia where many of these individuals where taken and tortured . Then Secretary of State Condolleeza Rice under President Bush categorically denied that very fact but we now know this not to be true.

Egypt might well have been a useful ally to have but herein lies the question with this so called right of exceptionalism , where’s the right of common decency and the rule of law in all of this ? Thankfully, Egypt as a country albeit one that has been relatively stable until the unrest now being shown but without there being true reform and the very fact that while the present US administration hopefully looks for some reform and stability merely thinking that throwing money at a problem makes it better has simply shown that the foreign policy has been myopic and without any real thought !

This type of idiotic foreign policy that the US has been entrenched in has been existence merely driven to drive its own economic interests rather than being an equal partner with many of its allies in the Middle East. It’s not something that either side of the political debate would like to admit as being fact but it’s becoming more and more apparent that it has been the zeal which has driven the debate and policy of successive Presidential administrations down the years.

Hosni Mubarak isn’t yet ready to give up his rule as President of Egypt and the changes made in seeking the resignation of his entire government while replacing them with many of his cronies and one or two members from opposition party members merely smacks of desperation on his part , while he looks to still have the support of the West and in particular that of the US and the UN . If those two esteemed bodies show their support for Mubarak then essentially nothing will in fact change.

Courtesy of Wall St Journal

ElBaradei Says Unrest Will End if Mubarak Leaves

By Matt Bradley

Cairo – President Hosni Mubarak’s announcement that he will step down after elections later this year is “an act of deception” and will not satisfy the demands of those protesting against his 29-year rule, according to opposition leader and Nobel laureate Mohamed ElBaradei.

“Nobody is satisfied with that, nobody is ready to be naive, not see a ploy,” Mr. ElBaradei told a small group of journalists in an interview. “It’s an act of deception to me,” he added.

He said Mubarak needs to leave Egypt in order to bring an end to the mass demonstrations calling for him to step down.

“Once he’s out of the country” the demonstrators will go home, Mr. ElBaradei said.

Mr. Mubarak said Tuesday that he wouldn’t run in the next election and called for constitutional reforms, opening the door for opposition groups and his regime to square off for control of the country’s future. Mr. ElBaradei has emerged as a leader of a loose coalition of opposition forces that includes the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood .

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True political reform comes about from an ideology of change that starts from the top and one that works its way down to the benefit of one’s citizens. Egypt’s former Nobel Peace Prize award winner Mohammed ElBaradei and former head of the United Nation’s IAEA having returned to Egypt , has in part become of one of the most recognized voices that opposes the current government. As to whether or not he can viewed as one who can assume the mantel of leadership remains to be seen but it’s clear that he wants and seeks change for his country and that of its populace.

And it goes without saying that the changes sought by the Egyptian people and that of its citizens abroad will be a long time coming if the incumbent President remains in power. At the same time outside influences such as that of radical clerics who may well view this as a possible way of gaining further influence in breeding its explosive rhetoric of radical Islam could now jump into the fray and force the country into becoming in Islamic theocratic state that is administered by imams who’ll use Iran as their role model. Something that I believe that no one in the West would want at this juncture ! But in light of the relationship between the West and the Middle East at present this might not be out of the realms of possibility.

God knows with the situation that’s now in place in both Afghanistan and Iraq where the United States still involved in two wars and where both the governments of President Hamid Karzai (Afghanistan) and Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki are riddled with corruption and whose idea democracy aren’t now that much different than those of their Islamic neighbors who view an Islamic theocracy as a democratic form of government. It is where the rights of the populace aren’t as important as that of seeing the downfall of the infidels in the West which essentially is now what foments the vitriol that drives the ideology of radical Islam and where in the West we are now seeing the rise of xenophobia and outright racist rhetoric coming from all sides of the political agenda. One now wonders how this all we be portrayed from the bastion of right wing conservatism Fox News and that of the rather less than knowledgeable analysts and pundits of ABC , CBS , CNN , MSNBC and NBC ? . Let’s just say all the perception of knowledge that they can give you with some incisive insight as to the state of affairs is in reality that they simply don’t really understand many of the issues with any great depth.

I’ve always maintained that a person’s right to seek one’s own freedom starts with taking a stance and that of a rallying cry. It’s now happening in Egypt but that was never the case with the countries of Afghanistan or Iraq as US the saw fit to entrench itself in a conflict, which was one of futility and not of necessity and one where the planning and its execution has bordered on sheer ineptitude. It kind of now makes one wonder how the US can now extricate itself from both situations and now on appearance, its support of another dictator that the country has supported while trying to suggest that they’re a trusted ally ?

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have on the political unrest now happening in Egypt and how things have changed not only in that country but also in Tunisia , Jordan and Yemen where we’ve seen the citizens demonstrating in the streets calling for changes and political reform ? Do you believe that Mubarak will step down as President and relinquish his role as Head of State or will he try to remain in office ? Chime in with your thoughts on this matter .

Picture and slide show details.

(1) Egypt’s capitol Cairo amidst of the vocal demonstrators who oppose President Hosni Mubarak’s stay in power . The beleaugered President having sought the firing of the Egyptian Cabinet still holds unto the reins of office having sworn in some members of the opposition and in large part many of his closes allies to be part of a new ministerial administration. However that has not been enough to vanquish the President’s staunchest opponents and the populace at large. Mubarak has since made the public statement that he’ll step down in September at the time of a new election for President and that of a new government altogether. Western analysts seek a smooth transition over the period rather than the country falling into utter chaos. Courtesy of AFP/ Reuters …………..

(2) U.S. President Barack Obama (R) speaks as (L-4th L) Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, King Abdullah II of Jordan, and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak listen during an East Room statement at the White House September 1, 2010 in Washington, DC. The White House has kicked off a new round of direct peace talks for the Middle East, the first one in more than 18 months. Getty Images North America / Alex Wong …………

(3) U.S. President Barak Obama (R) talks with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in the Oval Office at the White House August 18, 2009 in Washington, DC. The two leaders discussed a range of issues including Middle East peace. Getty Images North America / Mark Wilson ……….

(4) Beleaguered President Hosni Murabak addresses the nation on state television informing them of the changes to be made in the country’s government. However he’s stated that he won’t step down until there’s a smooth transition and elections take place in September. His opponents had sought the President’s resignation and his departure from office and the country. Reuters/ Mohammed Al-Shahi ……

(5) Egyptian protesters hold pictures showing slain Egyptian businessman Khaled Said as they shout anti-police slogans during a demonstration in Alexandria, Egypt Wednesday. Anger is spreading in Egypt over the latest example of police brutality and torture within the close US ally. Courtesy AP/ Christian Science Monitor ….. @ copyrighted material all rights reserved

(6) U.S. President Barack Obama (right) and Secretary of State of State Hillary Clinton participate in a cabinet meeting at the White House February 1, 2011 in Washington, DC. Later in the day President Obama will meet with members of the Technology CEO Council to discuss competitiveness, innovation, and the need to create jobs. But what might be now a more pressing situation facing the administration is the growing unrest in Egypt and the presence of US citizens there now hoping to leave the country under US mandated evacuation. Getty Images/ Mark Wilson …….

(7) Anti-Government Protesters Clash With Pro-Mubarak Demonstrators A supporter of embattled Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek is thrown from a horse during a clash between pro-Mubarek and anti-government protesters in Tahrir Square on February 2, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Yesterday President Mubarak announced that he would not run for another term in office, but would stay in power until elections later this year. Thousands of supporters of Egypt’s long-time president and opponents of the regime clashed then today in Tahrir Square, throwing rocks and fighting with improvised weapons. Getty Images / Chris Hondros ……….

(8) A wounded Egyptian man is brought away from front lines during a clash between pro- and anti-Mubarek protesters February 2, 2011 in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt. Yesterday President Mubarak announced that he would not run for another term in office, but would stay in power until elections later this year. Thousands of supporters of Egypt’s long-time president and opponents of the regime clashed then today in Tahrir Square, throwing rocks and fighting with improvised weapons. Getty Images / Chris Hondros ……….

(9) Egyptian opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei is surrounded by reporters as he arrives at Cairo airport on January 27, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Mr ElBaradei has vowed to join anti government protesters in Cairo tomorrow. Getty Images Europe / Peter Macdiarmid ……….

Facts about Egypt ………..

Alan aka tophhatal …………..

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Marvin Gaye …………. “What’s Going On/What’s Happening Brother”
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Fanning The Flames Of Ignorance And Liberty Or Just Being Stupid ?

Fanning The Flames Of Ignorance And Liberty Or Just Being Stupid ?

It should come as no surprise to anyone that with the upcoming ninth anniversary of the September attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon Building the nation has yet to heal from the most heinous of attacks perpetrated on US soil. And while we're seeing a rise in anti-Islamic resentment and a full scale attack on Muslims not just verbally but also physically with a number of what we're told are now random acts of violence. I've got to ask myself is this country actually now reverting back to the sixties and earlier wherein the seeds of resentment were actually aimed at African Americans and other minorities of color ? Clearly an argument could be made that this seems to be journey now being taken . Call it what you will xenophobia , racism or just plain ignorance and the unwillingness to accept the differences between the races that makes us so different.

This all seems to be coming from a rallying cry of what appears to zealous bigots who are stating that this is simply their way of reacting to the actions of the radical Islamists and jihadists out there whose call for death to imperialistic Zionists has to be heard. And while I condone those atrocities carried out by Al Qaeda and the Taliban I’ve got to say that should the proposed action of the Florida pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Florida ________ who calls for the burning of the Quran this Saturday to commemorate the tenth anniversary of 9/11 and also to act as a deterrent to the Islamists of the country’s will. I see it as a rather futile and idiotic act that will not only place the lives of US military men and women in harm’s way as well as that of the coalition forces still waging on an ongoing war for the survival of Afghanistan and Iraq. Somehow this seems to have been lost on this pastor and the members of his congregation who seem intent on joining him in this exercise .

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Having served in the military courtesy of Her Majesty’s (UK) armed forces in the Royal Marines where my own experiences on the front line was to witness what full blown atrocities were all about with the actions of the IRA in Ireland as well as on mainland Britain. I can say to you that any life lost on the field of battle is a needless one, unless there’s a certainty that one knows what exactly it is that you’re fighting for. I’ve taken lives in the service of my country and I’ve also tried to assist in the rebuilding of lives as it concerns that of the returning servicemen from active duty from both fronts in the current war being waged on terror. The law firm for which I work does a great deal of pro-bono work in order to aid military veterans gain the services denied to them by the VA and government due to the bureaucracy that tends to be thrown up in their path repeatedly. And for those of you who currently believe that the US government does all it can to assist these men and women then think again as nothing could be further from the truth. There have been horror stories out there that’ve gone reported and unreported that shows that this country tends to do a horrendous job in really honoring its men and women in the military. The lip service that’s paid by the politicians and on air political pundits alike is merely being done to solicit favoritism and little else beyond that.

Courtesy of The San Francisco Chronicle

9/11 Burn a Quran day motivated by Terry Jones’ greed, money & avarice ?

By Yobie Benjamin

Terry Jones, zealot pastor of a Florida church called the Dove World Outreach Center of Gainesville and author of “Islam is of the Devil” claims to be motivated and inspired by God as he toys with the world’s leaders, media and lives of American soldiers and civilians.

Barack Obama, Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Pope Benedict, Hillary Clinton, NATO, Interpol, every country in the European Union, every religious group in Gainesville, Florida and perhaps the entire civilized world has implored and pleaded with the zealot so-called pastor Terry Jones to cease and desist from burning Korans on September 11, 2010. The foreign ministries of Pakistan and Bahrain issued official denunciations with Bahrain calling it a “shameful act which is incompatible with the principles of tolerance and coexistence.” The president of Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, has also sent a letter to President Obama asking him to stop the bonfire.In Pakistan, about 200 lawyers and civil society members marched and burned a U.S. flag in the central Pakistani city of Multan, demanding that Washington halt the burning of the Muslim holy book.

Jones’ answer? He feigns religious persecution. He says his bank wants his church to pay what it is owed. He also says he has 200 Korans and he wants buy more to burn. There is no subtext or code for what this pastor wants. He wants you to send him and his 50 followers money and lots of it. Yes, please send money by joining as a “member” of the church. He also needs money because Florida authorities discovered that he was running a for-profit eBay enterprise and the state wants to get paid for sales taxes.

God has no part of Jones’ plan. Jones’ plan is the Terry Jones plan and it was the reason why his old church in Cologne Germany fired him. His motive is as earthly, worldly and as old as humanity itself – greed and avarice. Terry Jones has figured out the magic formula to get every self loathing zealot nut job in the world to send him money — Get on every TV, radio, newspaper and web site and plead for like minded idiots to send money. There is no doubt that several hundreds of new “members” have sent in their tithes to pastor fake doctor of theology.

The First Amendment of the US Constitution protects Jones’ right to say and do what he wants. Jones has the right to burn Korans even in the face of Gen. David Petraeus’s dire warnings. To emphasize his intention to burn Korans, Jones wrote a screed on his blog.

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Now you may consciously ask why can’t this pastor carry out his wish to burn the Quran as it is his wish , given his First Amendment Rights ? But I’d ask what en if the repercussions should be the loss of US military lives or that of US civilians abroad as an act of retaliation ? Does that comfort those who think this ought to be an appropriate act by the pastor ? Regardless of what your beliefs might be, this all could create a tremendous amount of blow-back for all of the wrong reasons of which we will have to ask ourselves was it all worth it at the end of the day ? Clearly there’s food and room for thought here on all sides of this equation no matter what one’s beliefs might be.

For many of us the devastation and emotional horror of that momentous day is still something of a traumatic shock to the system and it may well have felt surreal. I can only speak for myself when I say that I was aghast sad and horrified when the reality began to set in as to what had taken place on 11th September 2001. For many of my friends and relatives whom I knew lived in the New York my immediate concern was for their safety but also the needless loss of lives all for the purpose to send a message of hate was one that simply reviled me. Now in the same essence I view the actions of this pastor as simply playing into the hands of the radical Islamists (Muslims) who’ll merely use this as another way of showing that they can simply show us that the disdain they have for all things Westernized and that should they choose to unleash a new reign of terror then we will simply have no real reply for it all. It’s not as if this pastor himself will take to the field of battle but he’ll simply revert to the fact that it was his calling and God’s will ? Well I was under the impression that the Christian teachings taught us to be compassionate and tolerant of others ?

Islam itself is being perverted by fundamentalist clerics (imams) but unfortunately there are very few Muslims who are actually prepared to step forward and make their own thoughts be heard as a passionate call to show that they don’t believe in the perversion of their religion. And it’s the same here with this pastor and the very fact that there has been little or no call to state their disdain for what is being proposed by Terry Jones . On the right of the political aisle there’s little opposition and to the left of the argument you have those stating that it is within the pastor’s rights no matter how abhorrent it might appear to be. That may well be the case but what about common sense and decency ? Clearly this pastor and the members of his congregation think that they’re above that and that whatever transpires out of this all won’t be any concern of theirs even if it means the loss military lives.

Here also you have right wing Christian conservatives who come out and openly with disdain in their protests outside of military funerals and have called stated the fallen men of women of the US military who’ve died so valiantly and with honor in the service of their country. They have in effect stated that their deaths have been because this country has sought to embrace homosexuality,socialistic ideals and other things that they deem to be perverted and un-American . Which begs the question what is now meant to be American in terms of an ideology ? Unfortunately these idiots aren’t as enlightened or as educated as they believe themselves to be.

As the ninth anniversary 9/11 approaches this ought to be a time of reflection and conciliation but instead we’re seeing a divergence of not only of cultural beliefs but morals and integrity on both sides of the diaspora with each faction trying to lay claim that they’re right. The sadness in the midst of this all is that while this idiocy carries on the lessons there to be learned and taught are falling on deaf ears. And it’s an indictment of how far man has fallen of his path as a human being .

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

What are your own thoughts on the actions being proposed by this pastor and if there’s retaliatory actions taken by the terrorists how would you feel about it ? By all means simply chime in with your thoughts on the matter and as always thanks for the continued support !

Alan aka tophatal 🙂

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Depeche Mode Personal Jesus