Sunday, February 27, 2005

More Anti-Democratic Madness By Jimmy Carter

Ruling the clearly hijacked Venezuela elections were legitimate was not enough for the Peanut Farmer. Jimmy Carter is now returning to Venezuela "to help consolidate peace and democracy." From the Editorial Page of The American Thinker:

No one has demoralized Venezuela's democracy more than America's worst-ever president. The only legitimate reason he has to go to Caracas is to beg Venezuelans for forgiveness after that sorry show he put on last August, endorsing an election that was clearly stolen with his complicity. The Carter Center's shoddy election monitoring and mendacious spin control in the aftermath turned a profound exercise in democracy into a miserable affair swept under the rug, while Carter prepared to move on to the next election.

But something happened along the way to the next election: The State Department declined to endorse Carter's recall referendum observational results, as it had announced it would, and nobody important wanted the Carter Center's business anymore. Carter was conspicuously absent from the dead-serious elections in Ukraine and Iraq recently. Ever the vindictive little man, Carter "participated" in those by sniping at these great human events from the sidelines. For that, President Bush didn't care to call on him to lead tsunami relief either, as he did all other able-bodied former presidents.

The Carter Center brushed off studies by top economists like Ricardo Hausmann conclusively showing the extent of the fraud. And arrogantly, McCoy herself rebuffed a group of liberal-leaning Venezuelan bloggers in the Boston area, who painstakingly attempted to ask polite questions to claify how the Carterites came to their conclusions during the recall referendum. She didn't have the time of day for them, and added that there were "so many" bulletin boards. That certainly was convenient for her career purposes. But it came at the expense of the Venezuelans' legitimate interest in an explanation and their valid civic interests. Quite a tradeoff for someone who claims to be a peacemaker. But no surprise for someone affiliated with an insincere weakling and coward like Jimmy Carter.

I advise you to go here and read the rest of the editorial if you get the chance. It is one of the most cohesive and complete rebukes of Carter's work in Venezuela that I have yet seen in print.

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Blogging From Iran Just Got Dangerous

From the BBC: Iran jails blogger for 14 years

An Iranian weblogger has been jailed for 14 years on charges of spying and aiding foreign counter-revolutionaries.
Arash Sigarchi was arrested last month after using his blog to criticise the arrest of other online journalists.

Mr Sigarchi, who also edits a newspaper in northern Iran, was sentenced by a revolutionary court in the Gilan area.

His sentence, criticised by human rights watchdog Reporters Without Borders, comes a day after an online "day of action" to secure his release.

Iranian authorities have recently clamped down on the growing popularity of weblogs, restricting access to major blogging sites from within Iran.

A second Iranian blogger, Motjaba Saminejad, who also used his website to report on bloggers' arrests, is still being held.

'Illegal and incompetent'

A spokesman for Reporters Without Borders, which tracks press freedom across the globe, described Mr Sigarchi's sentence as "harsh" and called on Iranian President Mohammed Khatami to work to secure his immediate release.

"The authorities are trying to make an example of him," the organisation said in a statement.


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Syria Hands Over Terrorist. What Gives?

By Kevin D. Korenthal - 02-27-05

What gives with Syria is that President Bashir Assad sees (perhaps a little late and a little dimly) the writing on the wall. Thus they have handed a throw-away to Iraq, Saddam Hussein's half-brother and wanted terrorist Sabawi Ibrahim al-Hassan.

Obviously Syria is feeling the heat from anti-Syrian protesters in Lebanon and growing antipathy in the Middle East over Syria's overt meddling in Iraq.

The opposition to Syrian occupation has stepped up efforts and is putting together plans for a post-Syria Lebanon. One Lebanese resistance leader, some say the only leader that matters, Walid Jumblatt has indicated in very specific words that the days of the Syrian occupation of Lebanon are numbered. Most analysts in the region agree that Syria can not possibly hold on the Lebanon for much longer.

With President Bush and even France's Chirac putting the heat on Assad, it is only a matter of time before Syria pulls out. It's kind of ironic. The Arabs have been calling for America to leave Arab lands but it looks like it will be some of those that made that call that will be leaving Arab lands! Beautiful!

Whatever the case, whatever fish that Bashir Assad throws our way, Syria is about to leave Lebanon. Once Syria has lost control of Lebanon, the string that can unwind the entire Assad Regime will be exposed. If it can be pulled, a totally (as yet) unplanned bonus for Democracy in the Middle east could be in play. Furthermore, many analysts have opined that some of the precursor WMD materials that were originally in Iraq were transferred through the Bekka Valley of Lebanon to just over the border region between Lebanon and Syria. Once Syria is out of the area, a full exploration of the suspected route can be tested.

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Funny Follies of the Iraq Insurgency

I am still trying to compose myself after reading this hilarious commentary on the Iraqi Resistance version of the Darwin Awards started by Lt. Col. Jim Stockmoe, chief intelligence officer for the First Infantry Division.

Created in 1993 by a student at Stanford University, the Darwin awards commemorate those who "contribute to our gene pool by removing themselves from it in a really stupid way."

"There were three brothers down in Baghdad who had a mortar tube and were firing into the Green Zone," Stockmoe said. "They were storing the mortar rounds in the car engine compartment and the rounds got overheated. Two of these clowns dropped them in the tube and they exploded, blowing their legs off."

The surviving brother sought refuge in a nearby house, but the occupants "beat the crap out of him and turned him over to the Iraqi police," Stockmoe told Harnden, "It was like the movie 'Dumb and Dumber.' "

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