Wrong Side Of History

I found it ironic today that there are people viewing staying out of Iraq as being on the “wrong side of history”. I couldn’t think of a more perfect example of a battle fought in folly, than Canadian troops going to fight ISIS in Iraq with bombers.

Eleven years ago I was in an evening classroom learning about computer graphics when Bush and Cheney started the second Iraq War with “shock and awe” bombings. The ensuing destruction of that country left the Americans floundering for money at home, and Iraq awash in political instability and weapons. With the Americans weary of a decade long war, they pulled out of Iraq, leaving a power vacuum that was entirely predictable, but didn’t have a more workable solution.

Now Canada is graced with a war-hungry neo-con Prime Minister who’s not about to pass up a chance to bomb a Muslim country. I grew up when there were still WWI veterans at Remembrance Day ceremonies, and kids drew posters proclaiming, “Never Again”. Now, those veterans are all dead, and with them the idea of avoiding war to solve geopolitical struggles.

Powerful Canadian politicians instead sound like texting-teenagers looking for a cyber-fight.

Despite credible, and entirely reasonable warnings that air strikes are not a terror-suppression tactic, Canada will paint itself as some sort of bold defender of the Kurds, and charge into Iraq behind the Americans.

A 3rd Iraq War, with Canada more involved than the last time, is a mistake. Yes, ISIS is a terrible despotic government, but Canada doesn’t go around bombing every despotic government. There are specific reasons the Americans are focused on Iraq, and Canada doesn’t have to get wrapped up in them because a lunatic Prime Minister wants his legacy to be a war conducted in folly.

Charlie’s War

Saw “Charlie Wilson’s War” [8/10] which explains the background behind the Soviet’s failure in Afghanistan, and paved the way for the Taliban to later take over. Today I saw “Cars 2″ [6/10] which explains why we have people focused on fossil fuel vehicles.

Each somewhat ties into the 10 year old book I’m reading, Power Down, which has theories on economic declines, including the US and USSR. The Soviet’s oil production, and America’s have slowed economic growth for each, leading to predictable collapses.

Police Violence Rages in Ferguson, MO

The out-of-control police response to protests against the killing of Michael Brown in a St. Louis, MO suburb, continues.

Yesterday more journalists were arrested without charge, leaving little evidence for the wronged reporters to seek damages in a civil lawsuit.

This police riot in Ferguson is more evidence that Obama is hostile toward the free press (which includes Julian Assange trapped in London).

The police are blaming the media and the public for what’s going wrong. The blame begins and ends with their behaviour. Their member killed an unarmed kid. They refused to charge the culprit. They’ve fired teargas at children and peaceful demonstrators. They’ve arrested media. None of these things are reasonable in the United States considering the First Amendment.

The police said that anyone other than people carrying $50K cameras will be arrested tonight. That’s an illegal threat in the US of A.

It’s time for a lot of resignations.


The killing was live-tweeted

UN Under Attack

I’ve avoided making many blog posts on Middle East politics because they tend to descend into dogmatic shouting matches on the Internet. I also don’t know every historic, geographic, religious, and political detail so don’t count myself among the experts. One doesn’t have to be an expert to comment on the ghastly situation right now. It’s plain as day.

One of the more outrageous points of Israel and Hamas shooting at each other has been Israel’s shelling of UN sites housing thousands of civilians.

If this crap happened in Africa, future Canadian senators would be struggling to get sufficient peacekeeping forces in place to deter the aggressors blowing apart children and families.

Many journalists who are murdered get featured prominently on Canadian news.

There are people who are willing to overlook Israel’s war crimes because they don’t want to give an inch to the obviously violent Hamas.

You see Timmy, Israel must bomb children in UN shelters because #Gaza supports a terrorist group called Hamas who tries to avenge those kids’ deaths.

WikiLeaks: A Country’s Name To Kill

An interesting ethical debate is taking place. FirstLook Media, the controversial and adversarial media outlet owned by PayPal’s inventor, has withheld the name of the 5th country the NSA collects recordings of all phone calls from. SOMALGET and MYSTIC are Top Secret programs revealed by the Snowden leaks from the NSA. Following on the earth shaking revelations of last year starting with the “metadata” gathering in the US called PRISM, MYSTIC is again changing Americans’ views of what their spy agencies are actually working toward.

I think WikiLeaks should reveal this information, and not because it’s likely to cause deaths, but because a Top Secret American program having a country name revealed more than a year after it was known to be compromised, is not a reason to redact it any longer. WikiLeaks is right, and the citizens of the violated nation have a human right to know the United States government was able to record every phone call. It wouldn’t be the first time a Top Secret American program has led to people dying, either.

People can then place the blame where it belongs for any deaths, at the feet of the NSA, and Bush/Obama, not simplistically on the WikiLeaks scapegoat.