Before President Trump, the biggest Korean attraction was the Gangnam Style video — so the nascent nuclear deal says it makes sense to combine the two.
— Sol (@solentgreenis) May 1, 2018
Before President Trump, the biggest Korean attraction was the Gangnam Style video — so the nascent nuclear deal says it makes sense to combine the two.
— Sol (@solentgreenis) May 1, 2018
Netanyahu’s amazing presentation about Iran’s nuclear weapons program shows that Obama was either a useful idiot or a scheming collaborator. Your choice.
If you haven’t seen Benjamin Netanyahu’s detailed exposé of the Iranian nuclear weapons program, you must. As always, I am very interested in anything you have to say on the subject:
Given a vexing, dangerous, and complicated problem like North Korea, Progressives reduce the issue to school-boy sniggering about sexual prowess.
One of the things that distinguishes Progressives from Conservatives is that the former are certain that they’re very smart. For example, they point out that wealthy Blue enclaves have a disproportionate number of America’s college graduates. This argument erroneously conflates intelligence with a college degree, something that has some virtue on the STEM side of college but is laughable when it comes to the liberal arts.
The same argument also erroneously conflates academic prowess (which is a form of intelligence) with wisdom or ethical sense. In the face of that argument, I always like to point out that Radovan Karadžić was a psychiatrist. That didn’t stop his genocidal mania.
Progressives also like to boast that all sorts of scientific studies show that they’re smarter than Conservatives. They haven’t quite grasped, of course, that social science studies are never really scientific because objectivity is impossible and biases seem inevitable.
You probably remember that a much-lauded study proclaiming that conservatives are psychotic had to be retracted entirely because the study’s results were reversed. In fact, it was the Progressives who showed more psychotic traits.
That’s not the only purportedly scientific study slamming conservatives. Universities routinely churn out studies showing that Conservatives are stupid, ill-informed, evil creatures. Lost in this self-defined world, they’re shocked when reputable polls show that Conservatives are actually more knowledgeable than Progressives.
Progressives also struggle to understand complaints that their methodology shows bias. It didn’t seem to occur to them that, if you prepare a study examining whether children in religious or atheist households are more moral or generous, you’re going to get skewed results if all your metrics are about Progressive ethics (morality is shown by being open to transgenderism) instead of being about Conservative ethics (personal generosity to the poor). [Read more…]
The Left liked to call George Bush a “cowboy,” implying that there was no telling what he’d do. Even the Left, of course, must have understood that this was a rhetorical trope and that there was no possibility that Bush would ever push the red button and start a nuclear war. He may have been feisty, but he wasn’t crazy.
What I’ve been saying forever, though, is that Iran is in fact crazy. Unlike Christians, who merely prepare for the coming apocalypse, the Shiites in Iran believe that it is their obligation to bring about the apocalypse. When Iranian leaders talks about wiping Iran’s enemies from the face of the earth, they aren’t just playing tough for the camera. Their core religious belief urges them towards doing what they can to rush towards Armageddon.
That’s just my opinion, of course. But it’s also the opinion of a Middle East expert like Bret Stephen, as he explains in this easy-to-understand video examining Iran’s belief system, her hierarchy of enemies, and the reach she has once she creates a deliverable nuclear weapon:
Stephens wraps up the video by saying (emphasis mine):
Former Iranian President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a man often described as a “moderate” and a “pragmatist” in the Western press, articulated the Iranian position this way:
If one day the Islamic world is also equipped with weapons, like those that Israel possesses now, then the Imperial a strategy will reach a standstill because the use of even one nuclear bomb inside Israel will destroyed everything. However, one bomb will only harm the Islamic world.
He’s right. That’s why the civilized and sensible leaders of the world cannot allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons — because once the Iranians do, they will pose a severe threat to the security of America and Europe, spark a regional arms race that could see the world’s worst players acquire the world’s worst weapons, and threaten the Jews with extermination for the second time in a century. Or, to put it more simply, Iran cannot be allowed to get the bomb because they might actually use it.
Think about that line that “the civilized and sensible leaders of the world cannot allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons.” Now think about the fact that President Obama, rather than pressuring Iran to stop its nuclear program, has lifted sanctions on Iran based on nothing more than its leaders’ promises that their country’s frenetic nuclear work is just for power plants.
These are lies so barefaced that a kindergartner could see through them. Obama too must know that they are lies, leading to only a few possible conclusions: First, per Stephens, Obama is neither civilized nor sensible. Second, Obama is insane. Third, Obama approves of Iran’s nuclear goals.
UPDATE: Given Obama’s fecklessness, not to mention is unseemly yearning for a “deal” that allows Iran to get the bomb, Israel is getting very concerned.
I’m tired of pussy-footing around calling Obama merely dishonest, stupid, feral, leftist, etc. Let’s call it like it is: the man is evil.
Only an evil man would say this (emphasis mine):
There are times where I as President of the United States am going to have different tactical perspectives than the Prime Minister of Israel and that is understandable. Because Israel cannot contract out its security in light of the history that the people of Israel understand all too well… But ultimately it is my view, from a tactical perspective, that we have to test out this proposition. It will make us stronger internationally, and it may possibly lead to a deal.
On its face, that statement looks merely stupid, but just the slightest bit of analysis reveals that it is a statement by a man who is morally corrupted to the point of evil. Let me explain:
Israel has been America’s friend for decades. Iran has been remarkably clear that, when it achieves full nuclear weapon status, it will obliterate Israel. The apocalyptic strain of Shiite Islam that Iran practices is comfortable with the idea of a nuclear holocaust, especially because most of the Muslims in the line of fire are Sunnis, who are Shiites’ ancient enemies.
When seen through the reality spectrum, as opposed to the evil spectrum, Israel and America should have identical interests. Israel wants to survive. And America, as Israel’s longstanding friend, should want Israel to survive, just as America, as a humanist nation, shouldn’t want to see a huge swath of the Middle East vanish under mushroom-shaped clouds.
So what does Obama say? He says, big-hearted guy that he is, that he understands that Israel and America will have “different tactical perspectives.” And yeah, sure he also vaguely gets that Israelis don’t want to be destroyed en masse. When push comes to shove, though, who cares about the Israelis’ survival instinct. It’s much more important that Obama gets a chance “to test out this proposition [letting Iran go nuclear].”
That is bad enough on its face, but please keep in mind that Obama is manifestly undeterred by the fact that every single proposition he’s tested out thus far has failed: his economic propositions have failed, his healthcare propositions are failing in a way that could bring down the U.S. economy, his Arab Spring propositions have failed, his foreign policy propositions have failed — everything he touches fails.
That global failure leads to one of two conclusions: He’s pathologically stupid, which I no longer believe; or all these failures are intentional, which makes him evil. Moreover, once one adds this new Iranian “test proposition” to Obama’s list of known failures, you pretty much have proof of my theorem: Obama is an evil man, QED.
Hat tip: Gateway Pundit
The Emergency Committee for Israel reminds the world that you cannot believe a serial liar:
Shakespeare knew Obama: “Reputation, reputation, reputation! Oh, I have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is bestial. My reputation, Iago, my reputation!”
I haven’t yet decided whether I’m unnerved by North Korea’s saber rattling. We’ve seen this before, starting in the 1990s, when the North Koreans figured out that, if they made the West sufficiently nervous, the West would bring offerings of food and money to the destitute totalitarian prison state, in hopes that feeding the beast would render it docile. Things seem a little different this time, though, so maybe I’m getting more nervous.
First, North Korea has never been so open in its aggression. If I remember past situations correctly, the North Koreans shot missiles here and there, made the usual threats against South Korea, and had the propaganda news station heighten the rhetoric a little bit, but that was it. This time, however, North Korea has made public carefully posed photographs showing Kim Jong-un clustering with his generals as they blot nuclear missile attacks, not just at Seoul, but at specifically named American cities — Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and Austin, Texas. Specific threats tend to be more worrisome than generic Communist hate-speech. (And I don’t mean to imply that the past threats against Seoul were meaningless. Regardless of meaning, they were also part of North Korean ritual.)
Second, North Korea is under new management. Kim Jong-un is a totally unknown quantity. Maybe he’s just using his youthful zeal to bring new optics into the stale ritual blackmail . . . but maybe not. As ancient Rome showed, the tyrants tend to get crazier as time goes by. (Think: Caligula.) Maybe Jong-un, who has never known anything but the insane hot house of North Korean politics, actually thinks attacking South Korea and the United States will work to his country’s benefit. Megalomania doesn’t breed rational thought.
Third, North Korea has the nuclear weapons this time, and they’ve given every indication that they’re crazy enough to use them. No mutually assured destruction doctrine will hold them back.
Fourth, it’s peculiar that North Korea hasn’t made any demands yet, despite a month of threats. And not just threats, but escalating threats.
Fifth — and this is the really scary one — this may all be a red herring as they ship nuclear arms to Iran. I read today (and for the life of me I can’t remember where) that this may all be a shell game, with Iran keeping our focus on its ability to build nuclear weapons, while North Korea keeps our focus on its ability to use nuclear weapons. In fact, Iran may not be building, and North Korea may not be using. Instead, it’s quite possible that North Korea is building the weapons for Iran’s use. And that’s a very scary thought indeed.
That’s my brain spill about North Korea and its escalating threats. What do you guys think?
Sometimes my liberal friends surprise me. Buried amongst the snarky, ill-informed pictures they routinely post, I’ll occasionally find something thoughtful and important. Very, very important — such as this short video explaining precisely why Iran poses such a threat, not just within the Middle East, but to the whole world, America included:
The question for voters is whether they want to give Obama another four years to futz around while the Mullahs build their nuclear bombs and delivery systems (because futz is all he did during the first four years while the Mullahs powered forward) or if they want to hand the problem to an Alpha dog. Romney is not insanely aggressive (he’s no mad dog or cowboy) but, more importantly, he’s not in thrall to a deranged Leftist belief that, if we just make nice to Mullahs who believe that must take an active hand in bringing around the apocalypse, those same mullahs will also make nice and just go away.
Nor am I comfortable with Joe Biden’s assurance that, “Well, sure they have the bomb, but they can’t do anything with it.” Biden doesn’t know his derriere from a ditch, and he has proven over the years to be remarkably wrong when it comes to national security issues. The mere fact that he’s not worried frightens me as much as anything else could.
(The sad thing is that I’m pretty sure that the liberal friend who posted this video firmly believes that, despite the evidence of his first four years in office, Obama is the only one to save the world.)
There’s a website that goes with this video. It offers prizes for those who make the effort to email the video to as many friends as possible. Sending a few emails strikes me as a small price to pay for a worthy cause.
The choice before the Cambridge Debating Society was whether one should choose war to stop Iran from going nuclear, or simply accept a nuclear Iran. Douglas Murray offers a devastating rebuttal to those who say, “Who cares if Iran goes nuclear?” The 11 minute video starts out good and, halfway through, gets great:
Hat tip: Seraphic Secret
As a companion piece, please watch a different video that Robert Avrech posted about challenging Muslim ideology vis a vis the Jews and Israel.
In his excellent post about the myriad flaws in the administration’s probable (and inchoate) containment plan for Iran, Max Boot makes a very important point, one I’ve somehow missed when reading others on the same subject. He argues that Leftist nostalgic for the realpolitik of the Cold War, which saw us learning to live uneasily alongside a nuclear Soviet Union, can be replicated here:
Those policies worked against the Soviet Union, but no one should have any illusions that they provide a painless fix to the threat posed by Iran. In the first place, even with the Soviets, there were a few moments when nuclear war was a serious possibility. Remember the Cuban Missile Crisis? There is no guarantee that a replay with Iran — say a Lebanese Missile Crisis — would be resolved so peaceably. Moreover, even if we avoided World War III, containing the Soviets was hardly bloodless — it cost the lives of nearly a 100,000 American soldiers in Korea and Vietnam.
Well, there is that, but there’s also a more abstract problem, and that is the nature of the nuclear opponent. The Soviet Union was made up of political ideologues who dearly wanted power in this world. Power, after all, is a thing of the real world. This meant that a certain pragmatism infused all of the Soviet efforts. They were willing to play nuclear chicken with us, but the Soviets were not personally inclined to be the ones driving off the cliff.
How different are the Iranians. They are not ideologues, they are zealots. They’re orientation isn’t this world, it’s the next. They are aiming for Armageddon. Their particular world view demands a man-made conflagration as a prerequisite for the coming of the 12th Iman. As far as they’re concerned, the game of chicken is won if everyone drives off the cliff.
This profound ideological difference between the Soviets and the Iranians is why containment is foolish at best and suicidal at worst. The mutual deterrence strategy that characterized the Cold War worked because each side, ultimately, wanted to live. The Soviets may not have cared about the bodies strewn in their paths, but they cared a great deal about their own power and about having a base over which to lord it. Personal nuclear immolation didn’t factor into their plans.
How different are the Mullahs, who see their job on this earth as destructive — of others and of themselves. So what if they start a nuclear war? When everything is dead and gone, the truth faith will still hover over the dust.
You know the story: Obama has informed the world that we won’t use our nuclear weapons unless some rogue regime strikes. Aside from the fact that he’s now tacitly admitted that he’s not going to stop Iran from going nuclear, he’s also announced to every nuclear nation in the world that the U.S. is surrendering in advance. China, Russia, Pakistan, Iran, etc., are all thinking maybe there really is a God, because their prayers have been answered.
Or at least that’s my take. What about yours?
P.S. Before you comment, read AllahPundit’s more nuanced take of Obama’s many layers of nuance. Drudge’s breathless headline is over-the-top (which even I had figured out), so AllahPundit takes the time to deconstruct things. Honestly, though, I still think my first reaction is right on the money, which is that Chinese and Russian leaders are dancing in the street, and Iran now has the final proof it needs that Obama is just going to sit there and do nothing while it creates a nuclear arsenal, nicely aimed, not at the U.S., but at Europe and Israel.
UPDATE: I always feel that the intelligence of my thinking is confirmed when I discover that Jennifer Rubin and I are in sync. Which we are.
Several years ago, when Bush Derangement Syndrome was at its peak, I tackled the “he’s got his finger on the button and he’s going to blow up the world” meme that anti-war activists were so shrilly screaming. I pointed out that there was no evidence whatsoever to indicate that George Bush was an apocalyptic person. Indeed, every indication was that he was someone who fought reluctantly and defensively only — that is, he wanted to protect America from destruction at the hands of another. That his information was wrong, that the threat from Iraq was something of a Potemkin threat, with Hussein blustering about his capabilities to elevate his profile, doesn’t take away from the fact that Bush engaged with Iraq, not to destroy Iraq, but because he believed America was at imminent risk from Iraq’s destructive capabilities. (Incidentally, I believe that much of Iraq’s arsenal, whether it rose to the level of WMDs or not, is currently sitting comfortably in Syria, except for the bit that Israel destroyed in 2007.)
How different are the Mullahs. Western pragmatists (including Leftists in deep denial about the nature of Apocalyptic Shia Islam) believe that Iran is merely bloviating for effect when it constantly insists that Israel will be reduced to ashes. They believe that Iran is merely trying to gain regional stature by creating functional nuclear weapons. After all, they say, Iran knows that, if it launches a nuclear bomb at Israel, two things will happen: First, Israel’s last act before its own destruction will be to destroy Iran (assuming Israel has that long-range nuclear capability itself). Second, Iran will become a pariah among nations for committing this genocidal act, which will lead to the downfall of the Mullahs and the end of their dreams. As for this last, considering the rampant antisemitism on the rise around the world, considering the region in which Iran is located, and, right now, considering the man in the White House, I don’t believe that for a minute. Iran will get her hand politely slapped at the UN, and the world will continue as usual, minus a few million Jews.
The last argument in the pragmatists’ quiver is that, even if Israel can’t destroy Iran, and even if Iran doesn’t become a pariah nation, Iran will not drop the bomb because, if she does, as many Muslims will die as will Jews. After all, not only does Israel have a huge Arab population, it is surrounded by Muslims — in the West Bank, in Gaza, in Egypt, in Jordan, in Lebanon. Nuclear bombs have fallout, and many millions of Muslims will die along with the hated Jews.
And that’s where the pragmatists show themselves to be ignoramuses. They actually believe that the Mullahs care whether Muslims, Iranian or otherwise, die. The Mullahs don’t. Their Shia religion is an apocalyptic one, and one that doesn’t care whether man or God ignites the maelstrom that brings about the returning of the missing imam and the end of days. In that, their apocalyptic fervor is quite different from the Christian belief in an apocalypse. As I understand it, the latter predicts the Apocalypse’s ultimate arrival, but does not believe that man is the instrument that will bring it about. God will, when he wills.
For the Mullahs, then, there’s a distinct virtue in simultaneously wiping God’s enemies (Jews and the hated State of Israel) off the earth and in simultaneously bringing about the end of days. That the latter might involve the deaths of millions, including Iran’s own citizens, is completely irrelevant. The goal matters, and the collateral damage just has to be accepted as part of that greater good.
I promised in the title of this post that I would compare Mullahs and Democrats. I will or, rather, Andy McCarthy will explain that the Democrats, too, do not care about self-immolation if it will lead to their own apocalyptic vision, which is the destruction of America’s evil capitalist, individualist system, and the emergence, like a phoenix from the ashes, of a socialist promised land. Any pragmatist Republican fantasies that Democrats will retreat in the face of failing poll numbers are just that — fantasies:
I think our side is analyzing this all wrong: Today’s Democrats are controlled by the radical Left, and it is more important to them to execute the permanent transformation of American society than it is to win the upcoming election cycles. They have already factored in losing in November — even losing big. For them, winning big now outweighs that. I think they’re right.
I hear Republicans getting giddy over the fact that “reconciliation,” if it comes to that, is a huge political loser. That’s the wrong way to look at it. The Democratic leadership has already internalized the inevitablility of taking its political lumps. That makes reconciliation truly scary. Since the Dems know they will have to ram this monstrosity through, they figure it might as well be as monstrous as they can get wavering Democrats to go along with. Clipping the leadership’s statist ambitions in order to peel off a few Republicans is not going to work. I’m glad Republicans have held firm, but let’s not be under any illusions about what that means. In the Democrat leadership, we are not dealing with conventional politicians for whom the goal of being reelected is paramount and will rein in their radicalism. They want socialized medicine and all it entails about government control even more than they want to win elections. After all, if the party of government transforms the relationship between the citizen and the state, its power over our lives will be vast even in those cycles when it is not in the majority. This is about power, and there is more to power than winning elections, especially if you’ve calculated that your opposition does not have the gumption to dismantle your ballooning welfare state.
Nor is there any consolation to be had in a Republican sweep in November. Even if the Republicans grab the majority in both houses, they will not be able to pass veto-proof bills undoing the reconciliation damage heading down the political path. Obama, after all, is every bit as interested in transformation as the rest of the current crop of Democrats and will willingly sacrifice himself by vetoing bills aimed at undoing a government takeover of 1/6 of the American economy.
Democrats are political martyrs, willing to die for the cause. This willingness explains Obama’s silly double-talk, where he urges compromise on the one hand and, on the other hand, says his way or the reconciliation highway.
And really, when you think about it, the martyrdom here is minimal. No actual crucifixion, no arrows, no flayings, no nuclear annihilation. Instead, you pack your bags, board a plane, and head off into the sunset of six figure speaking gigs, corporate jobs, and endless media adulation. That is, until the whole system implodes and the true anarchy begins.
Cross-p0sted at Right Wing News
UPDATE: From Andy McCarthy’s savvy predictions to Nancy Pelosi’s small brain and loud mouth:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi urged her colleagues to back a major overhaul of U.S. health care even if it threatens their political careers, a call to arms that underscores the issue’s massive role in this election year.
Lawmakers sometimes must enact policies that, even if unpopular at the moment, will help the public, Pelosi said in an interview being broadcast Sunday the ABC News program “This Week.”
“We’re not here just to self-perpetuate our service in Congress,” she said. “We’re here to do the job for the American people.”
Her comments to ABC, in the interview released Sunday, seemed to acknowledge the widely held view that Democrats will lose House seats this fall — maybe a lot. They now control the chamber 255 to 178, with two vacancies. Pelosi stopped well short of suggesting Democrats could lose their majority, but she called on members of her party to make a bold move on health care with no prospects of GOP help.
“Time is up,” she said. “We really have to go forth.”
Her comments somewhat echoed those of President Obama, who said at the end of last week’s bipartisan health care summit that Congress should act on the issue and let voters render their verdicts. “That’s what elections are for,” he said.
I’m not sure why Canada, except for maybe the large Muslim population, the porous border, and the country’s politically correct inertia:
Iran is attempting to acquire clandestine shipments via Canada for its nuclear program, a senior customs official said Thursday.
Canadian customs officers have seized everything from centrifuge parts to programmable logic controllers being shipped to Iran through third countries, George Webb, head of the Canada Border Services Agency’s Counter Proliferation Section, told the National Post.
The increasing number of cases involves entrepreneurs and state-sponsored cells, Webb told the daily, in comments that were confirmed to AFP by a spokeswoman for CBSA.
Microchips identified as possible “navigational chips” from the United States, Denmark and Japan were marked as headed for the United Arab Emirates, but officials suspect the end destination was Iran, said the Canadian daily.
“With all of the UN sanctions, of course, now no one declares that the goods are going to Iran. They actually declare UAE, Dubai,” he said.
The last seizure occurred just last week.
In April, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police charged a Toronto man with attempting to export pressure transducers, which can be used in nuclear power plants but are also required to produce nuclear weapons, to Iran.
Read the rest here.
Hat tip: Sadie
I few hours ago, I read the Twitters on “peculiar earthquakes” in the Korean Peninsula. Now I know why they were peculiar: the North Koreans are testing nukes. Oh, joy. I hope the White House’s “grave concern” translates into intelligent action.
Those of us who were paying attention knew that Obama was lying during the campaign season when he claimed that he was Israel’s best friend. The words sounded pretty, but we knew about (a) his nonexistent track record supporting Israel in the Senate and (b) his affiliations with people (Wright, Powers, etc.) who demonize Israel and long for her destruction at the hands of the surrounding Muslim nations. Jews, blinded by the liberalism that has overtaken any true sense of Jewish affiliation or actual love for Israel, voted for Obama in droves — probably making the difference between his winning and losing.
Well, American Jews voted and Israel is paying the price. Obama, of course, was lying through his teeth when he said he supported Israel. In the 100 plus days since he’s taken office, he’s kowtowed to those same nations that threaten Israel’s very existence, and shown Israel the coldest of cold shoulders.
Nos, he’s going from duplicitous and cruel to stupid. His latest initiative is to force Israel to admit that she has nuclear weapons (one of history’s worst kept, but still strategically important, secrets), so that he can force her into disarmament. His (and his administration’s) asinine reasoning is that Israel and Iran will then have parity and, ultimately, both can be forced to disarm.
Obama and team, of course, miss one fundamental thing about the nuclear weapons situation in the Middle East. As surrounding nations understand, Israel will never use the weapons offensively. She will only use them defensively. They are her sole deterent.
The other nations also understand that, much as they loath Israel’s existence, which is a continuing canker in their hearts and minds, she does not offer any existential threat to them. The reverse is not true. We know that every nation in the region desires Israel’s destruction and there is every reason to believe that Iran, once it goes nuclear, will use the weapons offensively against Israel. There is no parity, and forcing Israel to put her weapons on the table (so to speak), will not create any.
The other thing that Obama fails to understand is that, even if Israel is forced to show her hand and the pressure is on for disarmament, Iran will never disarm. It will lie, lie, lie, and lie again to ensure that it continues to have a usable weapons stock pile. While Israel’s goal is a simple one: to stay alive, Iran has a much more sophisticated set of three-tiered goals. Its first goal is Israel’s destruction; second, it seeks Middle East domination; and third, it desires world domination. Israel and all of the other nations in the Middle East understand Iran’s first two goals. Obama and team, despite their myriad degrees, don’t seem to understand any of Iran’s goals.
It will be interesting to see if Israel can withstand Obama’s pressure. I’m reasonably optimistic that, with Netanyahu at the helm, Israel understands what Obama is doing and understands what will happen if he gets away with it, and will resist this threat. I also think that, under the rubric of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend,” allegiances are going to start shifting in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt, etc., may hate Israel, but they fear a nuclear Iran even more than they hate Israel. My long-held suspicion since Obama’s election (which instantly meant Israel lost her only friend) is that Saudi Arabia, somehow or other, is going to give Israel cover for an attack against Iran.