Bin Laden = Hitler, 9/11 murderers = SS murderers. Got it so far?

Bin Laden = Hitler, 9/11 murderers = SS murderers. Got it so far?

: The other day, I had a proper fit over filmmaker Brian Grazer saying he hoped his upcoming network exploitationfest about the 9/11 terrorist attacks would do for Muslims what Das Boot did for Germans: humanize them. Now Britt Blaser has issued a strange response and I’ll get to that in a minute. But first, let’s get our analogies straight:

1. Bin Laden is our Hitler: the man who invents, justifies, and orders mass murder and recruits the murderers. Evil.

2. The 9/11 hijackers are his SS concentration-camp killers. Evil.

3. Continuing this analogy, then, Muslims are Germans: just people.

There is no equivalency in this for soldiers. Germans fought in their government’s army. The terrorists have no army and no nation and no legitimacy whatsoever. So they should not be treated as soldiers. The only analogy that works for them is members of Charles Manson’s death cult; that is why I used Manson in my headline on the earlier post.

Glazer gets it all screwed up thinking that humanizing Muslims has anything to do with humanizing 9/11 terrorists. That would be like saying that we want to make a movie humanizing SS concentration camp commandants to better understand Germans. That is wrong on three counts: First, it wants us to humanize murderers who are, yes, evil, and that would be misguided, pointless, and even dangerous; it tries to give sense to a senseless act, justification to an unjustifiable crime. Second, it judges a culture by its worst, which is unsulting to millions, blaming them all for the sins of a few. Third, this assumes that war criminals are merely soldiers, which they most certainly are not.

Glazer’s perspective is, of course, merely the reverse view of the dangerous notion that we need to understand our enemy, the terrorists: Bill Maher’s contention that we need to build a Why They Hate Us pavilion.

No, we need to build a memorial to their victims to remember why we hate them. We need to fear them. We need to understand them only insofar as is necessary to defeat them. To humanize them would be insane.

: Now to Britt’s strange post:

But Jeff and I have a fundamental disagreement on a core principle. I believe that you can be a warrior and put yourself in harm’s way without hating your enemy, but he seems committed to hate and revenge as a result of his near-death experience on 9/11. Every time he touches on his personal experience that day, the bile spills onto the page and, to my gentle sensibilities, poisons the dialogue that is the core of the give-and-take of blogging. Jeff seems to seek out opportunities to pick the scab of his near-death experience. Today’s example is his “dread” (Jeff’s word) of Brian Grazer’s NBC mini-series on 9/11, presenting the viewpoint of the perps, whereby Grazer hopes to portray the Muslims in the way that Das Boot humanized the German U-Boat crews….. [He then quotes the post and continues....]

Jeff, you got the shit scared out of you. It happens. Get over yourself. Please.

9/11 isn’t about you, and it’s beneath your dignity to take it so personally and viscerally. By over-personalizing your experience, you deprive us of the best of your wonderful gifts, which you bestow so freely when you treat every other subject. We get it that it affected you so personally and strongly. Hatred is a drug that’s addictive, energizing and pervasive. The problem with all that testosterone and adrenaline coursing through your system is that you can’t fly your plane as well….

Britt, let’s go back to the analogy above: Would you tell a survivor of a concentration camp not to hate the commandant? Would you tell a survivor of the killing fields not to hate Pol Pot? Would you tell the child of a 9/11 victim not to hate bin Laden? Would you tell them to just get over themselves?

Would you condescend to them the way you have to me: to say that by disagreeing with Grazer, I’m pouring bile and ruining blogs? I had an opinion about what he said and engaged in a dialogue. You are the one who tries to psychoanalyze and personalize that, to separate it from the substance of the discussion, Britt.

Britt then goes on to give a spiel he tried to give to me at e-Tech a year ago — and he’s no more successful getting me to drink his Kool-Aid now than he was then. Britt was a Vietnam pilot and he likes to talk about the cool and unemotional reserve of a warrior pilot. I wonder whether it’s some odd effort to bring together his Vietnam warrior days with his Deaniac peacenik days — but then, that would be psychoanalyzing him, wouldn’t it?

The question we need to ask ourselves is whether we should model our behavior on poorly-trained, superstitious Muslim terrorists or on our own highly trained military aviators? Because hatred and revenge are the M.O. of terrorists, not cool-headed warriors, we lower ourselves to their standards by relying on their fuels of choice: hatred and revenge. I submit that the work we must do is too important to rely on passion as our fuel. Rather, we must adopt the smart attitudes that are effective, rather than the compelling, visceral passions that feel so good.

9/11 was a wake up call to a reality that we’ve been living in for forty years but have been unable to face. Devolving into ritualized, repetitious rants about how the enemy is evil and that there are no good enemies and no bad friendlies is worse than sophomoric. It’s simply ill-informed and stupid and has been proven to be so by so many wars and jihads that to misunderstand those learnings is a conscious choice to embrace the only dark side available to us: ignorance and superstition that’s been proven wrong.

Like our own Vietnam vets who’ve gone back and had tea with their former enemies and shared family photos and wept together, we too will some day sit down with former terrorists and meet the humans within. As will they. It has happened every time, with all the Gooks, Nips, Huns, Slopes and Ragheads that we’ve ever railed against as we firebombed their homes for no apparent military gain.

Once again, he messes up the analogy: We went to war with Afghanistan and Iraq and now we are sitting down with Afghans and Iraqis to help them build democracies — but we damned well should not be sitting down with the terrorists in either nation — including the murdering slime in the post below — anymore than we should have sat down with the SS after World War II. By this logic, we should have canceled the Nuremberg trials and held an ice cream social: “Whipped cream, Herr Goering? Cherry, Herr Streicher? Please share your feelings, Herr von Rippentrop.”

And I most certainly believe that hate is an important weapon. If we let down our guard now and think that the terrorists are merely misunderstood, then we open the door to their next attack on our children.

I’m not a soldier, Britt. Your analogies don’t work for me. I’m a civilian. And it was as a civilian on my way to work that I witnessed mass murder that day. So don’t tell me I have to follow your orders to be cool under fire. I’m not in your army. Scared? Well, as much as I also bristle at your macho-military attempt to belittle and demean that perfectly sane reaction, I will say that, of course, I was scared and I still am and so should you be, so should America be. Personal? You bet your ass it’s personal. But I wasn’t talking about that in the post you didn’t like. I was talking about the portrayal of mass murderers in network entertainment and wrote my opinion about that. You are the one who tried to make the discussion personal. And I am responding personally: I am insulted by your post.

  • Skate

    Jeff wrote:
    ” If we let down our guard now and think that the terrorists are merely misunderstood, then we open the door to their next attack on our children.”
    And if we *fail* to understand the terrorists we open the door to their next attack. Know thy enemy. Understand what they are up to and what makes them tick. Knowledge is the key to defeating the enemy. Blissful ignorance in the name of disdain will not help us catch or kill terrorists.

  • http://www.buzzmachine.com Jeff Jarvis

    As I said, we need to understand them insofar as is necessary to smash them.
    Doesn’t mean I can’t hate the bastards.

  • http://www.tomdevine.net Tom Devine

    You were right to be insulted by that silly, condesending attempt to psychoanalyze you by someone completely unqualified to do so. Your only mistake was to dignify his comments with a reply.

  • Wagner James Au

    > Would you tell a survivor of a
    > concentration camp not to hate the commandant?
    > Would you tell a survivor of the killing fields
    > not to hate Pol Pot? Would you tell the child
    > of a 9/11 victim not to hate bin Laden?
    Actually, Jeff, I would. I’d tell them that their anger is righteous, and absolutely understandable– but that they should do their utmost to channel that rage into a clear-headed, focused resolve to seek justice against the perpetrators, and only the perpetrators. “Hate” connotes irrational, overwhelming hostility that subsumes all thought and corrupts all action, and worse, spreads like a miasma that engulfs both the guilty and the innocent.
    Let me ask your question a little bit differently: would you tell our military in Afghanistan to feel hate for our enemies? I know soldiers who’ve fought there, and the striking thing to me, talking with them, is that the best of them *don’t* feel hate, even in the heat of battle. They can’t, because that would cloud their judgement, and get innocent people harmed– including their own men.
    Speaking of which, Glazer’s comment about *Das Boot* did strike me as odd, but I do think you’re reflexively interpreting it in the worse possible way, and lashing out way too quickly. Most Muslims did not support the 9/11 terror attacks, but at the same time, due to the rise of Wahhabism, they’ve been immersed in the ideology which led to it. 9/11 had the effect of dragging these otherwise non-violent Muslims into a war they didn’t choose. In that narrow context, Glazer’s comment (if he meant it that way) is not necessarily as indefensible as you make it out to be.
    Then again, why not just *ask* Glazer what he meant? You have press credentials, you’re a regular on various cable news shows, you surely have a Hollywood Creative Directory in your office. Why not look up Imagine Entertainment, and give his office a ring, or send a fax, and ask for a clarification?

  • http://theyellowline.blogspot.com Alan

    Jeff is absolutely right.
    I will never forget the endless flight of helicopters flying over my home, the bodies of those murdered at the Pentagon being carried away. Those are the people whose humanity we must remember. The terrorists do not deserve to be “humanized.”

  • MG

    ” ‘Hate’ connotes irrational, overwhelming hostility that subsumes all thought and corrupts all action, and worse, spreads like a miasma that engulfs both the guilty and the innocent.”
    The connotation of hate is the crux of the issue, isn’t it? It seems that without coming to a common understanding on what one means by the word “hate”, people just talk past each other.
    Aside#1: It is fairly easy for a fighter pilot to talk about keeping detached from the emotions of combat. Not so easy for an infantryman, especially against a foe that “fights dirty”.
    For me, it isn’t complicated. They want me dead, because I exist. I want them dead, because they want me dead. It isn’t a symmetric situation, and I have the superior moral claim. Is that hate? I think so, but my meaning isn’t the same as others.

  • http://www.papascott.de/ Scott Hanson

    I missed the original post, but I won’t let that stop me…
    If Brian Grazer thinks Das Boot was about “humanizing Germans”, he’s missing the point completely. It was filmed as a German TV mini-series for a German audience. Petersen was not trying to humanize Germans for the world, he was trying to explain Germans to themselves, the soldiers to their children. (Oh, the book is even better than the film.)
    That has absolutely nothing in common with Hollywood trying to “humanize” terrorists.

  • Kat

    (9/11 isn’t about you, and it’s beneath your dignity to take it so personally and viscerally.) Well, if it wasn’t about you, could you ask Britt
    who it was about? Was it about the babies they targeted? I’m afraid Britt has his head stuck in the sand or up some camel’s ass if he thinks 911 wasn’t about all Americans,and definitely about you. Had you perished that day, there would have been millions cheering your death and praising allah.

  • http://RuthCalvo Ruth

    To emphasize Jeff’s point, terrorists are not representative of their society:
    Muslims march against Terrorism May 14 in D.C.
    Particulars:
    Freedom Plaza Neighborhood: Downtown Address: Pennsylvania Ave. between 13th & 14th Street, NW Metro: Federal Triangle Date & Time: Saturday, May 14th 2005 1-5 pm
    Free Muslims Against Terrorism http://www.freemuslims.org 202-776-7190

  • Kat

    Yes, the last such march attracted about a dozen muslims. We will see. I will certainly give them credit if they begin condemning their terrorist brethern instead of condoning and funding them.

  • Kat

    And if terrorists are not representative of their society, why is that almost all terrorists today have one thing in common–mohammed?

  • Ged of Earthsea

    The parallel that works is 9/11 terrorists = KKK.
    They correspond on so many levels and the KKK is the one group the MSM is allowed to hate. The whole Nazi thing has been so overused as to be nearly meaningless.

  • Skate

    I’ll second Wagner James Au’s comments. Well put.
    As to Kat’s contention:
    “And if terrorists are not representative of their society, why is that almost all terrorists today have one thing in common–mohammed?’
    Kat, your presumption simply isn’t true and I think it shows a certain amount of prejudice that apparently is so natural to you that you don’t even notice. The Oklahoma City bombing had nothing to do with Islam, neither do the abortion clinic bombings, or, apparently, the Anthrax letters or all of the IRA bombings or the murders by Protestant militias.
    “Mohammed” isn’t the problem, the problem is dogmatic zealotry, a problem that Jeff is in danger of in his zeal to hate the terrorists. We need to be *better* than the terrorists and not share their blind sense of hate, but not turn the other cheek.

  • amyc

    most bizarre part:
    we too will some day sit down with former terrorists and meet the humans within
    unless they change and decide to make nice with infidel women, I think not.

  • robert

    Well then, I guess Hollywood will have a field day with a endless films ‘documenting’ the points-of-view of the endless number of murderers throughout history. Let’s see. ‘The Soft Side of Jeffrey Dahmer.’ ‘Hitler as a Pet Owner’. ‘Charles Manson Can Beat You at Backgammon’. [Etc]

  • robert

    I must add that for those who wish to equate ‘soldiers’ of Islam and their right to murder to national armies who are entrusted with the right to kill: tell this to ALL armies of the world – Canada, Germany, France, Portugal, Lichtenstein, Turkey, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, et al…not just the US.

  • Kat

    Then tell me Skate, what country today is free of islamic terrorism? And don’t give me the abortion killer crap–every decent human condemns those murderers. Unlike your friends who martyrize the terrorists and hold a huge celebration in England every year to commemorate, celebrate 911, and renew jihadism. The BIG difference, Skate, is that we put our terrorists in jail and you worship yours.

  • robert

    Sorry to interrupt, and I hope this isn’t considered spamming, but there are at least 179 national armies including Belize [11,000 voluntary strong] and Norway[!]. These are trained to kill, yet we don’t hear much from them…And yes, all of these military people have families and honest-to-god real lives. Maybe Canada’s 90,000 or so cutthroat military [including reservists] could be singled out in an exclusive about the uselessness of armed forces.

  • Skate

    Well, at risk of seeming like a terrorist sympathizer (I am not), I should point out that the difference between a terrorist and a soldier isn’t always cut and dried. Generally, we can see that the indiscriminate killing of innocent civilians is a key point that marks terrorism as different from “legitimate” engagement–though it is important to point out that terrorists also engage in targeted assassination. Another point is that terrorists are usually not part of a national army, but instead are part of a ideological faction.
    Taking the latter point first, it is odd that we think that nations have the right to kill people but that other groups don’t. Could it be that killing people is wrong for *both* groups? Why should nations get a free pass? Why does the US have the right to attack Iraq this time (the 1st Gulf War was clearly justified, in my mind, this one, not so much) and kill 100,000 or so people? Oh, sure, we used massive military force instead of insurgents and suicide bombers, but the the dead people are unlikely to notice a difference. If GW had decided to kill 100,000 *Americans* he’d be considered the worst mass murderer in US history, but because the dead are mostly Iraqi collateral damage he’ll face no consequences what so ever. Why is it ok to kill thousands but not one? Iraq taunted us over and over, but they didn’t through the first punch in this case. (And, no, I don’t think we have to wait until someone lobs a nuke at us before we can defend ourselves, but was Iraq more dangerous than countries that *actually* have nuclear weapons programs like Iran, Pakistan and North Korea?)
    Now, backing up to my first point, terrorists usually kill innocent civilians on purpose. While we only kill innocent civilians, in the thousands, by accident. Once again, the dead people really don’t care.
    Then there is the method of attack. When our soldiers were attacked in Lebanon, the attackers used a suicide truck bomb. When we tried to assassinate Momar Kadafi we used airplanes and massive bombs and accidently killed civilians. Planes are ok for some reason and trucks are not.
    Also, for some reason, targeted assassination with a sniper is wrong for us to do, but massive bombs which are known to miss their targets and kill civilians are ok? We really have to work out this convoluted position on assasination so that we don’t keep killing civilians.
    Now, before Kat, Eileen and Jeff accuse me of being a terrorist sympathizer I want to not that my point is not that we are just like the terrorists but that we use some tactics that wind up killing innocents and if we want to keep from becoming like the terrorists we have to be very vigilant. The kind of reactionary “hate is good,” “all most all terrorists have Mohammed in common,” “terrorists are subhuman and beyond understanding” rhetoric closes people’s minds off from the uncomfortable truth, that the zealotry, hatred and smug superiority of despicable, murdering terrorists is all too easy to relate to in small ways. The first step in thinking like the terrorists is to dehumanize the enemy–that is what lets them kill so easily. We mustn’t make the same mistake as we attempt to defeat them.

  • Skate

    Wait, I spoke to soon. Kat has already decide I’m a terrorists sympathiser:
    “Then tell me Skate, what country today is free of islamic terrorism? And don’t give me the abortion killer crap–every decent human condemns those murderers. Unlike your friends who martyrize the terrorists and hold a huge celebration in England every year to commemorate, celebrate 911, and renew jihadism. The BIG difference, Skate, is that we put our terrorists in jail and you worship yours.

    I’m extremely offended that you claim that I “worship” terrorists. That kind of un-American rhetoric is highly inappropriate here or anywhere else. The idea that anyone who has different thoughts from you must be terrorist worshiper wholly and completely unjustifiable. I ask that you take back these false, offensive and libelous allegations immediately.

  • Kat

    And if I don’t will you issue a fatwa?

  • robert

    skate
    this is merely a ‘rebuttal’ to your posts
    you said:
    “I should point out that the difference between a terrorist and a soldier isn’t always cut and dried.”
    Neither is the difference between one apple and another ñ donít you ëselectí among the ëbestí?
    Can you deliver definitive sources for ‘thousands’ of casualties?
    you said:
    “Iraq taunted us over and over, but they didn’t through [sic] the first punch in this case. ”
    Thatís why you buy health, life, and auto insurance right?
    To generally respond to your post:
    Yeah, but weíre mostly right, while the terrorists are mostly wrong. [using your sweeping generalization method of comparison - you being the good Christian that you are.]

  • Skate

    “And if I don’t will you issue a fatwa?”
    No, Kat. However, if I were one of the posters who uses their full name I would consider my legal options, including a suit for libel. Posting “anonymously” on the internet does not indemnify you from legal liability for making false and libelous statements which demean a person’s good name and reputation.
    I’m all for energetic discussion and fierce disagreement on message boards. I think we can learn from different perspectives and I’m a firm believer in the value of the Hegelian dialectic–the process coming to new conclusions by testing arguments against each other. However, attacking a person’s reputation with false, demeaning and libelous accusations falls clearly outside the legitimate realm of spirited debate.
    I have never expressed sympathy or worship for terrorists in any of my posts, nor do I have any. Your offensive accusations to the contrary are pure fantasy on your part and I ask that you apologize for this false and offensive attack.

  • Kat

    Skate, you are constantly trying to excuse terrorists with ridiculous equivalencies and you jump to their defence like a dung beetle to shit. However, I can tell you I apologize, but I can’t tell you it’s heartfelt. I don’t trust people who try to excuse terrorists by contending we have criminals among us just like them. Every nation has criminals, but all people don’t gutblow for allah and are then seen as martyrs.
    Yes, comparing the decapitating bloodthirsty ghouls to our soldiers is libelous. I am offended.

  • Skate

    Kat, thank you for the un-heartfelt apology. I can appreciate that we disagree vehemently, but I would hope that all the discussions can be about the issues.
    I really think that you completely misunderstand me and my motives. I think that misunderstanding is compounded by a certain amount of zeal and a “you are either with us or against us” false dichotomy.
    I’m non-theistic. I think all religion was created by man as a comforting explanation for the complex world and that god is a parent figure for grown-ups to believe in. The desire to ask our parents “why” doesn’t go away when we grow up, we just replace our parents with religion. A religious person can “know” the answers to all of the universes mysteries in complete and comforting, if unjustified, certainty: god. Rationalists have to contend with the much more intellectually challenging reality that they don’t know all of the answers and the answers we do know are subject to change as science learns more about the universe.
    I’m very offended by the self-righteousness of Islamic extremists who think their god feels shame and that it is their duty to kill blasphemers. I would not wish to believe in a god who is so weak and thin skinned.
    I think Sharia law is awful, sexist, racist and deplorable.
    I think Christian extremists who kill in the name of god are equally deplorable.
    I think terrorists are vile murders. I think religion helps give people an unjustified sense of moral certainty and superiority that enables terrorism, but is not necessarily the cause.
    I think humans are tribal by nature and we tend to think of our selves as “us” vs. “them.” I also think we have a built in sense of “fairness” that makes us want everybody to play by the same rules we do. When I’m driving on the freeway, I hate it when people drive faster than me. The desire of Islamic extremists is a grossly perverted version of that: “All people should be Muslim like me or die.”
    I think that the desire to hate terrorists clouds our rational judgment and leads people to call other people “terrorist worshippers” as part of that unfocused hate.
    I think that extremism, both external and internal, is the enemy of democracy and that it is easy to become the enemy in trying to defeat the enemy.
    As for your contention, Kat, that “the decapitating bloodthirsty ghouls to our soldiers is libelous.” First off, libel has to be more specific, second do you really think that none of the people bombed as “collateral” damage were decapitated by the bombs? I do think that the vile kidnapers are despicable murders, and I wouldn’t compare our soldiers to them, but to the victims dead is dead.
    I’ll make a small bet, that more people have died in the Gulf War II as in all the terrorist acts in world history combined. I don’t have the figures to know for sure, but it seems pretty likely.

  • Skate

    PS
    I’m not including the mass murders by Hitler, Stalin, Mao or Pol Pot, or other acts of genocide, in the the “terrorism” figures. Those mass murders were horrific unto themselves, but generally were not classified under what we now call “terrorism.”

  • robert

    Skate
    how shall we confirm the victor of the bet?

  • Kat

    Well, you’d lose in Darfur alone. Those are muslim terrorists murdering Blacks daily. They wipe out whole villages but the MSM keeps it hidden. In one village 1500 were slaughtered in one nite and all the children’s heads impaled on poles.

  • Skate

    “Skate
    how shall we confirm the victor of the bet?”
    I’ll will be tough. I’m betting that the total numbers for people killed in terrorist attacks is better documented than the total number of people killed in Gulf War II–the US doesn’t keep records of Iraqi casualties–but that which attacks can fairly be defined as “terrorist” will be a point of contention. So, nobody can definitively “win” this argument as there will always be some wiggle room on either side. But, I think it is a telling comparison.
    If part of the reason we hate terrorists is that they kill innocent civilians, I think it would tax our cognitive dissonance to try and explain why it is ok for us to possibly have killed *more* people in order to be better than the terrorists.
    (And, no, Kat, I’m not sympathizing or worshiping terrorists.)

  • kat

    And let’s not forget that most people dying in Iraq these days are at the hands of ghouls…islamic fanatics.
    Skate, in a war, you always hope you kill more of the enemy than they kill of your side.
    What about Darfur, Skate? How do you excuse the terrorists there? Could be as many as 300,000 dead. Are they freedom fighters? More people have died in Iraq than in Iraq, but why are those casualties not important?

  • Kat

    I meant Darfur.(More people have died in Darfur than in Iraq)

  • Skate

    “What about Darfur, Skate?”
    Couldn’t tell you, frankly. I don’t know enough about it.
    I’m not saying we like terrorists, I’m only trying to keep the debate a rational one rather than an emotional one and that we need to be careful about sweeping statements. And my point is never that terrorists. I think terrorism is bad (duh), but also that war involves killing, too.

  • Kat

    Yes, we should have just let the Germans do their thing. Silly world fought back. We should have just done nothing about 911, like Clinton did about the dozens of attacks on his watch.
    Islamism is the biggest threat to world peace. And I don’t give a damn if you don’t like the truth, but that’s the way it is. Muslim fanatics declared war on us a long time ago–it was high time we fought back.
    You don’t know about Darfur because you don’t want to–it is just about muslim terrorists killing hundreds of thousands of civilians–biggest crisis in the world today–liitle girls raped, children murdered. You prefer to stick your head up the camel’s ass and let the genocide go on and continue being a hypocrite who only sees wrong where you want to see it–in Americans.
    Anyways you lose your silly bet–Darfur has the Iraqi total beat by miles. And all due to your little friends you want to understand.

  • http://www.hellblazer.com Hal

    As usual, JJ, you’ve completely missed the point. Britt isn’t saying we should sit down and negotiate with the terrorists. He isn’t saying we should let up one bit.
    You pretty much prove his point by going non-linear like this.

  • Brian H

    Actually, Hal, he’s making a point that was best expressed in “Gestalt Therapy” by Perls: telling someone else how they feel or what they think is “mind fucking”, and is illegitimate fighting. It’s a special form of “ad hominem” argument, made worse by its condescending pose of superior knowledge of how your listener’s mind and emotions operate.
    I think you can scour Jeff’s writing for a long time before you find anywhere he tells Britt about his own mind or psychology, while Britt’s whole argument seems to sit on such presumption.

  • LT

    Hey Skate
    As a soldier I can point out the difference between soldiers and terrorists very easily. Terrorists ACTIVELY engage/target civilians for death. Soldiers go to great lengths to AVOID civilian casualties, and even to PROTECT the civilian populace. Protecting is one of the most important jobs we have. It is all wrapped around INTENT. The (I will not call them what I would like to) that murdered the downed pilot, do not participate in upholding the same standards of professional conduct that most soldiers(given some don’t) do. Yes, there is a difference between us and them, and I don’t think that its too terribly hard to see.
    Respectfully
    LT

  • http://publius_salon.blogspot.com Kenneth Gauck

    Addressing Britt’s two cases, the angry terrorist, or the cool professional, I would ask, which is the NAZI killer? Everything about the holocaust is cool, professional, and effeciently business-like. Detached killing doesn’t strike me as any more enobling than passionate killing. Indeed, I think its safe to say its not about the emotional state of the warrior, but about the justice of the cause he fights for.

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Kat and Skate:
    Very interesting back and forth. But Skate, I think Kat has the better stand in this debate.
    We need rationalism, which both you and Kat have in good measure, but we also need the passion and the burning drive to win and destroy our enemy, and Kat is right to bring that to our attention.
    Jeff:
    I was near the World Trade Center when the jihadis destroyed it and 3,000 lives and families.
    They would have been glad to kill you and me and as many other people as they could have.
    But while I would like to see them and their movement destroyed, I don’t think I hate them.
    They are a danger, like a bear or a rattlesnake is a danger to someone camping in the wilderness.
    Unlike a wild creature, they are driven by an evil and fantasy-based ideology. But for whatever reason, that does not make me hate them.
    The Islamist terrorists are a fact of life that must be dealt with and defeated, and it would be great if their leaders are one day brought to justice. But it seems like a waste of my personality or my emotion to give them enough psychic attention to hate them. I don’t have enough respect for them to hate them, perhaps.
    But if someone else wants to hate them, I don’t think it’s wrong to do that, except to the extent that such a hatred might embitter the hater’s soul and detract from the hater’s pursuit of happiness.
    LT:
    I agree 100% with you sir.

  • Otis Wildflower

    Anyone who doesn’t still feel anger and rage about the 9/11 attacks is not an American. I see that gaping hole in the sky every weekday morning on my way to work, and it makes me furious.

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Otis:
    I think the idea of America is best summed up as having the desire to protect and enjoy freedom, and having a willingness to accept the responsibilities that come with living with freedom.
    Getting worked up over the 9/11 attacks is a good indicator of American feeling or thinking, but not getting worked up over the 9/11 attacks is not a good indicator of anything.
    I used to get somewhat angry and hostile about the attacks (I work downtown), but my strongest reaction was always mournful.
    And nowadays I don’t feel much of anything anymore when I pass the site each day. I think the reason for that is because we are in the process of winning the War on Terror, so my reaction is like, “F–k you you dumb f–ks, try and get us again and see what happens next time…”
    And when I was actually in the middle of the war zone on Sep. 11., 2001, I didn’t feel angry that day either. My main reaction was disbelief and a kind of tense alertness, trying to figure out what the heck was going on and what to do about it.

  • http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/56B784AA-8C20-4C4F-8F62-7D78E85BE26D.htm Cog

    I have a question, look at this file photo on Al Jazeera, from a story on an AP cameraman killed in Iraq:
    http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/56B784AA-8C20-4C4F-8F62-7D78E85BE26D.htm
    The caption for the photo, an archive photo of a cameraman killed by US artillery [I believe] from 2 years ago reads:
    “A file photo of a bloodied camera from the Palestine Hotel, Baghdad, US shooting that injured and killed journalists in 2003.”
    This is one of the most powerful images from the Iraq war to date, and it comes from US action that killed a journalist.
    The main problem with the story is that the identity of those who killed the AP cameraman is not given. Did the US forces shoot the cameraman, or was he shot by insurgents, as was the unarmed Bulgarian pilot a few days earlier.
    What does AJ have to say about the attackers?
    “The circumstances of the death and injury remain unclear.”
    The US detention of another journalist is thoroughly detailed, the fact that a US patrol was targeted was noted, the fact that the US was at the scene when the journalists were there was noted.
    But Al Jazeera uses the most divisive and manipulative photo to “add” to the story?
    Al Jazeera for the last two years has been running file photos of dead Iraqi women and children whenever there is an attack that injures civilians. It does not matter if it is terrorists or coalition forces, they will run a dead photo of a baby and say “many children have been killed due to the US invasion of Iraq.”
    Is anyone else bothered by this?

  • Skate

    LT wrote:
    “Terrorists ACTIVELY engage/target civilians for death. Soldiers go to great lengths to AVOID civilian casualties, and even to PROTECT the civilian populace.”
    You make an excellent point.
    Contrary to how it might seem, I’m not a pacifist who thinks the US should let our enemies take advantage of us. In order to protect ourselves from armed enemies we have to be armed as well–armed with superior capabilities and the intelligence to use them judiciously. In the case of the Gulf War II, an important question is if it was the right war to fight given all of the other dangerous countries (Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia). LT has noted that soldiers try to minimize civilian casualties, but they are an inevitable part of a war. So the decision to go to war is the decision that has the greatest impact on civilian deaths.

  • franky

    “That would be like saying that we want to make a movie humanizing SS concentration camp commandants to better understand Germans. That is wrong on three counts: First, it wants us to humanize murderers who are, yes, evil, and that would be misguided, pointless, and even dangerous; it tries to give sense to a senseless act, justification to an unjustifiable crime.”
    Jeff in light of this comment, I want you to picture exactly how an Iraqi may explain to another Iraqi who had lost a relative in US bombing exactly how the US invasion of their country was justified. Would it be trying “to give sense to a senseless act, justification to an unjustifiable crime”?
    Let me save us both some time – “well of course we were justified because we were doing what was right”.
    A man who holds up such a flimsy justification is in no position to demand that the motivations of others be hidden.
    To repeat something I always ask: be consistent.

  • LT

    Hey Franky
    I’d like to answer that question. The Iraqi might start by saying “If Saddam had not been such a greedy, murdering SOB; if he hadn’t imprisoned our children, and let his sons pillage the countryside and rape our wives; if he wouldn’t have invaded Kuwait a decade before; if he would have only complied with the UN after the end of the first Gulf War; if he wouldn’t have gassed our own people; if he would have just left the US alone and not tried to assasinate the Former President Bush; if he would have stopped shooting at coalition aircraft; if he would have made any REAL & SOLID good faith effort; then:
    “maybe the United States and the Coalition wouldn’t have had to come hold him accountable for the things he has done. yes, the deaths are a tragedy of one that I do not know, but maybe we too should hold SADDAM accountable his own actions, not blame the US. ”
    LT

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Skate:
    So the decision to go to war is the decision that has the greatest impact on civilian deaths.
    Not always. Sometimes the decision not to go war has the greatest impact on civilian deaths. See the appeasement of Hitler, or Bush Sr.’s refusal to go to Baghdad, or the genocide in Rwanda, or the genocide in Darfur, and so on.
    Franky:
    I wouldn’t try to justify to someone the death of his/her relative as a result of U.S. bombing or shooting. I would respect his/her loss, and apologize, and only address the reasons if he/she demanded it of me.
    But if doing the right thing is not a justification, then out of consistency franky, you had better surrender yourself to the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court, because as a citizen of the U.S., you are a full-fledged tax-paying cog in the imperial war machine, and your hands are as bloody as anybody else’s.
    Or is consistency only required for Jeff and not yourself?

  • Faramin

    LT,
    I’m glad you have decided to respond to the comments and questions of people, even if some of them are not addressed to you. I wish you would have done the same and responded to so many concerns and questions that I made here when discussing Iraq, Saddam, US foreign policies around the world, including what the US did to my country, Iran, 52 years ago. Here you talk about how bad Saddam was, but you ignore the fact that the same Saddam was of your closest allies when he was murdering Iraqis, when he was using chemical bombs against Iranians and it own people, when he was enjoying the double amount of business with the US businesses right after killing people of Helebjah by using the newly purchased American helicopters. I even brought you many examples indicating the US soldiers where not as innocent as you try to say here. I brought examples from your own colleagues speaking of US army brutalities (for fun) deliberately killing civilians. There I believe, you just dismissed my points, by saying you didn’t agree with them, without really disputing any of what I said.
    I do believe that writing substanceless essays would only affect emotional people not the rational ones. Please deal with facts not what you wish to be the facts.

  • Faramin

    Looks like my my link didn’t work.
    Here it is:
    http://www.buzzmachine.com/~jarvis/cgi-bin/mt-comments.cgi?entry_id=9517

  • Kat

    Faramin, take your own advice. Deal with facts, not what you wish to be the facts. If you want to lay blame, you had better get on an anti-Russian kick. Are you leading the charge against Caterpillar because they sold the Cat that killed Rachel Corrie. People who get in car accidents should not blame themselves if they drive drunk–they should blame the person who sold the car. Lots of countries traded with Saddam. The WHO even gave him anthrax to help them prepare for a ppossible outbreak. They didn’t realize Saddam and his ghouls said one thing in English and another in Arabic. It is a lesson we need to learn about all muslim states or we will be held accountable for every muslim atrocity in the world. We need to blame Canada for the genocide in Sudan because Tasman oil does business with muslim killers. Canada, not the muslim jangawid is responsible.
    I think Faramin is suggesting we totally alienate ourselves from Arabic states.Do not share medical or any other technology with them–it will be used against you.
    http://www.solport.com/resources/Iraqi%20Weapons.JPG

  • Internet Reader

    Wagner James Au, you are too smart to be posting here. Please author me some more video game criticism. Thanks!

  • Faramin

    Kat,
    Don’t try to simplify the role US played in the massacre of the civilians in Halabjah when Saddam used the newly purcahed US helicopter to chemically attack the people.
    I have shown you MANY TIMES that there was a controversy whether those helicopters were to be sold to Iraq or not, as there were plenty of warnings what Saddam’s intention was as how and for what purpose to use the helicopters. But as usual in your “great” country, business lobby won and the legislation to stop the sale died shortly after it was introduced, and the result? Some more profit for the business with the help of puppet congressmen and death of 5000+ innocent people while the bloody money was being deposited into your corporate accounts. Great achievement for your “democarcy-loving” leaders, hah?
    Your ignorance of the facts is just sickening.

  • Kat

    Saudi Columnist: “We Are the Problem and Not America”
    Is Saudi Arabia coming to its senses? According to IMRA, “on November 30, 2003, Dr. Muhammad Talal Al-Rasheed, columnist for the English language daily The Saudi Gazette, wrote an article titled ‘Senseless Violence, Senseless Death.’ The article is in reaction to the murder of Saudi Prince Talal Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Rasheed of Hail by ‘Islamists’ in Algeria. The following are excerpts from the article:
    “We have bred monsters. We alone are responsible for it. I have written as much before my personal tragedy and will continue to do so for as long as it takes. We are the problem and not America or the penguins of the North Pole or those who live in caves in Afghanistan. We are it, and those who cannot see this are the ones to blame.
    “Castrated as we are, we look to America. Why? Because they went into Iraq and made a difference. Better or worse is another point. Once America has demonstrated its willingness to do something, the moral imperative is that it should not stop at the first station along the road. The majority of us are sick and tired of this carnage and President Bush, wrong on just about everything else, is right on this one. Does he have the (courage) to finish the job? I wonder.
    “I don’t think this will be published in the Arab News, as it should be. If not, I understand their point of view and their perpetual selectiveness. But one thing is sure, we are here to stay even if it takes giving our best to the madness of religion and the wrong of fanaticism. Nothing, but nothing, is worth the life of an innocent… may the Americans add Talal to their list of loved ones lost to the same indiscriminate madness that took 3,000 on a certain day in September.”
    NOTE:(We are it, and those who cannot see this are the ones to blame.) He is talking to ignorant people like you–a castrated little man.

  • kevinp

    Jeff:
    Of course war is terrible. Have their been circumstances where American soldiers have killed innocents. Yes. Is America perfect and free from justified complaints. No. But the difference between our soldiers and the terrorists is that our Soldiers operate under a system that tells them that intentionally targeting innocent non combatants is wrong. There are actually prosecutions for it. There are rules that say it is wrong. There are investigations and prosecutions for it. Have some soldiers operated in a illegal fashion and got away with. Probably? But it not considered the norm and it is not embraced by the society and even the bulk of the soldoiers.
    Now lets look at the terrorists. They have completely embraced the idea of targeting innocents. In fact it is their primary target. And not only do they target innocents, they celebrate it. They openly saw the heads of non combatants, film it, and then encourage their fellow muslims to do the same. The idea of rules for War sounds silly but it is an important difference. The terrorist have abandoned those rules and they wallow in the breaking of them. That is what Jeff is saying. There is a difference and if we ever come to the point of trying to “humanize” or rationalize barbarity then we will be headed towards anarchy. They Vietnam vets who are linking up with their Vietnamese counterparts are understanding opposing soldiers who, if not universally, played approximatly by the same general rules. I would never expect any Vietnamese citizen to “understand” My Lai. If instead of prosecuting the perpatrators we had made them into heros and videotaped their actions and told our other citizens that this action wasn’t shamefull but it was the ideal that we should aim for then we could say that we are all the same. We have had many shamefull action s in the wars that we have been involved in. And their have probably been some shamefull acts that we have hidden. But we have not reached the pit that the terrorists have reached by taking the lowest form of war and elevating it to the highest.

  • http://www.sheilaomalley.com red

    Rebecca West – author of Black Lamb and Grey Falcon – THE book to read about the Balkans, wrote:
    “A strong hatred is the best lamp to bear in our hands as we go over the dark places of life, cutting away the dead things men tell us to revere.”
    She wrote that in 1938, watching Europe fast approaching apocalypse once again. I agree with her sentiment wholeheartedly.

  • Franky

    Dear Lt,
    I’ve seen your posts before and have always been impressed by your corteous tone.
    To address your response – my point is that Jeff doesn’t want anyone else’s motivations looked at, doesn’t want to accept that there were reasons for the attacks on 9/11 (and for the morons out there – there is a difference between reasons and justifications), but yet needs Iraqis to sit around and look at the reasons for our bombing of Iraq. Now Jeff feels confident about our motivations in invading another country that posed no threat to us – fine, and I hope he can convince others they were right. Why would he be scared of understanding the motivations of those who attacked us or indeed any discussion beyond “they’re evil!!!!”? I don’t know. If a question ever comes down to more or less knowledge, I’m definitely on the side of more.
    Dear Matthew,
    I’m not sure where I stand on this issue of the individual’s responsibility for the actions of the government, but I guess in the end I would incline towards the person being accountable for the governmnet which represents them.

  • http://tonynoboloney@hotmail.com tonynoboloney

    As I have posted in here previously, I am sick and tired of the politics of “blame America”. We cannot or should not be blamed for the chaos which has become the Middle East. The constant drum beat to look at the historical perspective will not stand up, the various countries of the M.E. are totally to blame. The advent of oil in modern times only added fuel to the already fractious fire that is the history of the entire region. Greed and religious zealotry, combined with intolerance of the various Arab states (tribes?) for each other is the underlying story. If one desires to better understand what is truly the problem in places like Iraq and Iran, (as well as Syria,Pakistan,Afghanistan,Jordan,Isreal etc.)is to look at the violence condoned and even justified by the distinct factions among themselves. And although through the years the M.E. has been able to invole the rest of the world including Europe, America, and Russia, what is happening there today is characteristically Arab. Until the Arab world will seek to fix the Arab problems we will continue to see much more of the same. TONY

  • Kat

    ( but I guess in the end I would incline towards the person being accountable for the governmnet which represents them.) So because islam and muslim politics derive their teahings from the koran, we must blame Mohammed for the terrorists and the poverty that those beliefs breed. All muslims must be held responsible for their sharaic governments and the terrorism worldwide.

  • kat

    this guy will solve the problem by having the terrorists come from Africa. He’s deathly afraid of being fatwahed, I guess.
    http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0405/the_interpreter.php3
    {Is Misher afraid of offending Middle Eastern Islamists? Is he scared for his life? Does he want to avoid Arab “racial profiling?” My sense is, the guy is in liberal Hollywood denial over Islamic Wahhabi terrorism. If he doesn’t want to “encumber his film in politics,” then instead of making a film on terrorism maybe he should have produced the next Benji picture. No politics? Almost every movie to come out of Hollywood in the last fifteen years has had a leftist political bent. Who is he kidding?
    Funny how things have changed. Movies didn’t have any problem in depicting the rotten Germans in World War I and II. No problem in calling the Japanese our enemy for bombing Pearl Harbor. There have been plenty of films made about the cold war with no hesitation in referring to the Russians as Russians. Imagine a producer making a cold war spy picture and saying he “doesn’t want to encumber the film in politics in any way.” Why then, this current reluctance to call a Muslim terrorist a Muslim terrorist?
    If you’re waiting for Hollywood to make some old fashioned patriotic movies like they did in the 40′s concerning today’s enemies, you’ve got a long wait. Ain’t gonna happen. No, they’ll continue to make patriotic period pictures of good ol’ World War II, because it’s safe to hate Nazis, but not today’s wars with today’s enemies.}

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Faramin:
    1) U.S. soldiers committing atrocities in Iraq (or elsewhere): We punish these crimes when they become known, or at least when they become publicized.
    The Islamist terrorists and ex-Baathists and Taliban jihadis we are fighting don’t consider war crimes as offenses; they celebrate war crimes as blows against the Great Satan, and use them as tactical/strategic weapons. The U.S. has been very successful in minimizing civilian casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan. If you can’t acknowledge that, then you cannot analyze the reality of what is going on.
    2) U.S. support of Saddam Hussein: we engage tyrannies around the world in the hope of exerting positive influences on them. We trade with them, give them humanitarian support, and sometimes even give them military aid. During the cold war we went even further: we actively supported horrible tyrants and regimes in order to contain the threat of Soviet totalitarianism.
    During the Iran/Iraq conflict, we generally kept Saddam at a fair distance, and evaluated any aid fairly carefully. But some people at the time saw Khomeini’s revolutionary regime in Iran as the greater of two evils, and we strove to ensure that Iran did not become the dominant regional power.
    It’s easy to second-guess any military aid to Hussein during that time with the benefit of hindsight, but we actually helped Saddam in a very token way compared to France, Germany, and Russia. Your anger seems to me to be misdirected in this particular case.
    Right now the Bush administration and the U.S. people are good friends of the democratic reform movement in Iran. It makes more sense to see the U.S. as a natural ally of the people of Iran than as a malicious hegemon. I hope you can find it in yourself to move beyond past grievances and look to what we need to do in the future.
    Franky:
    Thanks for responding.
    My point wasn’t that you or I are guilty of anything. My point was that doing the right thing does justify the War on Terror and the campaign in Iraq. And that if you disagree with that, then your position isn’t as consistent as you seem to think it is.

  • Faramin

    Matthew Goggins,
    Thank you for your civilized dialogue. I will respond to your comment. But please allow me to do so later on, as I have another commitment to attend right now.

  • YetAnotherRick

    Faramin:
    Yours is the zillionth repetition of “But We Armed Him!” So what? How does that have any bearing on whether or not we should have removed Saddam by force? And as Kat pointed out, we only did part of the job. What would you say to the Iraqi from Detroit I heard say “Those who put him in power need to remove him.” It looks like the US was one of the few that were willing to take on responsibility for past misdeeds. I’ll also be haunted by the words of the young Iraqi boy who, though grateful to see the US soldiers, asked “What took you so long?” *Your* misuse of the facts is just sickening.
    Skate:
    You wrote: “A religious person can “know” the answers to all of the universes mysteries in complete and comforting, if unjustified, certainty: god. Rationalists have to contend with the much more intellectually challenging reality that they don’t know all of the answers and the answers we do know are subject to change as science learns more about the universe.”
    I don’t think you understand the relation between faith and doubt – well, for that matter a lot of believers don’t either. Here’s one theologian’s take on the matter:
    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2002/142/21.0.html
    Rationalism also helps give people an unjustified sense of moral certainty and superiority that enables all sorts of horrors. Consider Stalin, et al.
    In your terrorism body count, don’t leave out the hundreds of thousands Saddam killed. Some may count as genocide, but much of it was done to terrorize his people.

  • F15C

    “If a question ever comes down to more or less knowledge, I’m definitely on the side of more.”
    How much more knowledge, and for how long are you willing to pursue it? How much will you allow evil to achieve due to inaction whilst ostensibly gathering ‘more information’? At what point does the inaction necessitated by the gathering of more information become an abetting of evil?
    “The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing.”.
    At some point, wise and moral persons truly wishing to do the right thing know they must proceed, albeit it imperfectly, even without every shred of knowledge available to them, for to do otherwise would be morally wrong. Making such a decision – especially on a global scale – is difficult in the extreme especially since so many today would reward continued inaction for the ostensible ‘need for more information’.

  • F15C

    Regarding Brittís seeming bit of wisdom: ìLike our own Vietnam vets who’ve gone back and had tea with their former enemies and shared family photos and wept together, we too will some day sit down with former terrorists and meet the humans within. As will they. It has happened every time, with all the Gooks, Nips, Huns, Slopes and Ragheads that we’ve ever railed against as we firebombed their homes for no apparent military gain.î
    As a former pilot myself, I disagree with the ëno apparent military gainí comment, and I would remind Britt of the obvious: Not one of those enemies would have ëhad teaí with us while we were still ëthe enemyí. Only after a forced change of philosophy (at least outwardly) brought about by military and political defeat would they even consider doing so. Such is the reality of the current human condition. We have a great capacity to forgive and forget, but not during the fact. That is simple survival instinct and it is a good thing.
    The weakness of his argument is laughable. As though tea with Bin Laden – were it even possible – would be bring about positive actions. I remind Britt of Bin Ladenís stated goals:
    “We have the right to kill 4 million Americans — 2 million of them children — and to exile twice as many and wound and cripple hundreds of thousands. Furthermore, it is our right to fight them with chemical and biological weapons, so as to afflict them with the fatal maladies that have afflicted the Muslims because of the [Americans'] chemical and biological weapons.”
    Islamic terrorist group “Al Qaeda”
    June 12, 2002
    Somehow, I just donít think having tea with Al Qaeda is going to change their goals. Maybe I’m wrong Britt, maybe they will agree to cutting the numbers in half as a sign that they were touched by your invitation.

  • Faramin

    Matthew Goggins,
    I’m back. As I promised, here is my response to your comment:
    1) U.S. soldiers committing atrocities in Iraq (or elsewhere): We punish these crimes when they become known, or at least when they become publicized.
    No you don’t. Abu-Ghraib prison abuses ahowed that only a couple of low ranking soldiers will become the escape goats. not the high ranking ones who have made the policy of torture. Despite numerous calls and evidence, Sanchez was cleared of wrong doing. Rumsfeld still is your Defense Secretary and you name it.
    But I have no objection to what you say about the Islamic extremists. As I have no respect for them either. On the other hand, I do believe the policies of the US, especially in last few years, have made them even stronger than they could even imagine to be. That by itself is a disaster. “Thanks” to the US.
    As for your second point, your policy of supporting Saddam, cost ONE MILLION LIVES. Each one of them as valuable as the lives of the Americans. Please don’t look at it so simplisticaly. It wasn’t.
    It will not be easy for me to once again bring numerous links that show the US has been involved, directly or indirectly in so many atrocities around the world. I have provided those links many times on this blog during various exchange of comments. My links were never seriously disputed. The only common reply that I received was that “you are a terrorist”, “you are terrorist supporter”, “you are a Jihadist”, “you are a troll” and you name it. It is important for you to realize that the links I have provided are mostly what YOUR OWN OFFICIALS have said.
    It’s easy to second-guess any military aid to Hussein during that time with the benefit of hindsight, but we actually helped Saddam in a very token way compared to France, Germany, and Russia. Your anger seems to me to be misdirected in this particular case.
    I agree that the US was not alone. But why do I put emphasis on the US? It is because of the fact that the impact of US polcies today, are far greater than all of those countries all together.
    Right now the Bush administration and the U.S. people are good friends of the democratic reform movement in Iran. It makes more sense to see the U.S. as a natural ally of the people of Iran than as a malicious hegemon. I hope you can find it in yourself to move beyond past grievances and look to what we need to do in the future.
    Unfortunaetly it is not as easy as you think it is. How can I not be skeptical of the Adminsitration who grossly lied to its own people as what its real intention of the invasion of Iraq was? They spoke of WMD as the primary reason. That didn’t exist. They spoke of Saddam’s links to Al-qaeda. That wasn’t true.
    They claimed that Saddam had a major hand in the attacks of September 11. That was nothing but a lie. Obviously, by saying these things, I am not suggesting the Saddam was a noble person, as he really was nothing but a criminal. My point is just to talk about facts. And the facts tell me, as it should tell you, that the Bush Administration is nothing but a gang of liars who have no regards for human life and dignity.
    I don’t have a heart feeling towards the US people, as I do believe that they are just not informed enough (and I mean no offend by this). But yes, in natural state, people are always allies of people. During the 8 years of war with Iraq, I never for once felt the hatred towards the Iraqi people. People never hate people. I disgaree that Bush Administration is a natural ally of the reform movement in Iran. Everytime Bush administration spoke of Iran and its support for the Iranian people, it really backfired on us. The best help I can imagine from this administration is “not to help us”.
    And yes, I do hope that the American people, not governments who in real life are the puppets of the corporations, assist us to get rid of the criminal rullers of our country. But I will never exchange the value of a small support from an ordinary American, with significant “support” from those leaders to whom I have no respect.

  • kevinp

    Skate:
    I don’t know you but your simplistic generalazations about both religion and “rationalists” is just as dogmatic as the ideas that you ridicule. There is hard science , philosophy and religion. Your attempt to link the certainties of hard science on to your rationalist philosophy is the very trait that led the best and brightest rationalists of the late 19th and early 20th century to adopt Communism, the first political struture to claim that they were strictly scientific and to propose the notion that man is perfectable. And many of these intellectual giants held on to that belief long after it had proven to be a total failure time after time. Many people of faith who have a mature understanding of their faith know that it is belief. The problem many “rationalists”, not all, have is they refuse to accept that many of the so called theories that accept are no more based on reality then their religous counterparts and because they will never accept that their opinions are not based on science they often have a stronger faith in failed concepts then do their religous bretheran. this is especially true in the soft sciences, social, political,etc. The very fact that they try to add the label of science to what are philosophies shows that they are trying to explain things about man that can’t be duplicated like a science experiment. This is how economists,and psychologists can take the same data and often come up with two radically opposing answers. This happens sometimes in the hard sciences but in the soft sciences it happens on a dailey basis. But they make their claims with the same certainty that scientists make about what temperature water boils at.
    I am religous and have firm beliefs. But I take them on faith. I also know that I am not capable of fully understanding the true nature of God because as a human I do not have that ability.I can’t say that from your post I have a full understanding of who you are but your arrogant simplistic dismissal of religion sounds very similar to the dogamtic pronoucements of the most imature person of faith.

  • penny

    I think Christian extremists who kill in the name of god are equally deplorable.
    Don’t we all. But, that isn’t what your statement is about. It’s a gratuitious attempt to find some form of symmetry between the two. There is no symmetry of scale if you are referring to the handful of lone goofballs that have killed abortion doctors with Islamic terrorist. Or did I miss some other horrendous massacre by “Christian extremists” recently? There is no comparable behavior or body count attributed to “Christian extremists”(whoever they may be?) compared to globally organized Islamic fascists. Anyone who has tallied the “Christian extremist’s” vs the Jihadist’s body counts over the past three decades wouldn’t need to make that gratuitous disclaimer.

  • A.W. of Freespeech.com

    As a certified history geek, i own a copy of Das Boot on DVD. It never made me think any more kindly of German soldiers. Yeah, they were human. They were all human. But they also participated in evil. The two are not mutually exclusive.
    The same goes for our islamofascist foes.
    But instead of humanizing random muslims, how about we humanize the ones who are fighting for their freedom. We began to do that after the election, but how about we do more?
    But nah, then that might put Bush’s war into a positive light. And we know that the media won’t do that unless they absolutely can’t avoid it.

  • A.W. of Freespeech.com

    And one more thing. The left is always going on and on about how much we have to understand the enemy?
    Give me a break. Here is what we have to understand about them: they are murderous thugs who will kill infidels like US, the jews and people they consider false muslims for not adhering to the Taliban view of faith. What more do we f—ing need to understand them. You think if you read the Koran enough times you will suddenly be able to guess where they will try to attack next? Bull.
    No, the left wants us to “understand” them, because they think that if we understood them, we would suddenly think we deserve this, somehow.
    That’s not an accusation at you, Jeff. You get it. Just some of the other people responding here in that fashion.
    And for those always talking about the need to understand, oh, please, give me one example of how we need a deeper understanding than what i just outlined to predict their behavior. i would love to hear it.

  • Mike H.

    “Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say, ‘What should be the reward of such sacrifices?’ Bid us and our posterity bow the knee, supplicate the friendship, and plough, and sow, and reap, to glut the avarice of the men who have let loose on us the dogs of war to riot in our blood and hunt us from the face of the earth? If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animating contest of freedom, go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!” –Samuel Adams

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Faramin,
    I’ve read your response, and I have some things I’d like to say.
    I’m working all day today though, so I will have to answer you later.
    Thanks.

  • http://healthy-elements.com Lynn

    To listen to Middle Easterners chastise the West on the subject of killing, is like listening to a 600 lb husband chastise a slightly overweight wife for not being thin enough!

  • Kenneth

    Jeff,
    I agree with your point that the perpetrators of the 9-11 attacks were evil murderers, but I disagree with your argument they shouldn’t be “humanized” (whatever that means) because they are evil.
    Surely, the essential horror of evil is that humans can be evil. Nazis, Communists, Manson clannists or Islamists: take your pick, all have chosen to become evil. It is necessary to understand this essential tragic flaw of humanity in order to oppose, fight and defeat these evil people.
    Brian Grazer & Britt Blaser set up a false dichotomy when saying these murderers aren’t evil, because they are people. The fact is the terrorsts are both: people & evil.

  • http://engrm.com/blogometer/index.html Alan Gutierrez

    Jeff
    You are right. I read your post. I agree. I can’t stand how people are now using the Holocaust as a reference point for everything, without any understanding of the horrible history. It seems like they are now bent on trivializing the horror, now that the witnesses to the Holocaust are departing.
    Your attack on these 9/11 entertainment properties is right. The use of an analogy to Das Boot to sell them is wrong. Implying that it is necessary to understand Islam is outrageously offensive and self-serving.
    Cheers.

  • Faramin

    Lyn,
    To listen to Middle Easterners chastise the West on the subject of killing, is like listening to a 600 lb husband chastise a slightly overweight wife for not being thin enough!
    Obviously, you have a very limited knowledge of the middle east except what they have told you in your media on a daily basis, otherwise you wouldn’t make such a generalized comment that has no substance.
    I am a middle-eastern. I do not even know even how to operate a gun. And believe it or not, that is common in many countries in the middle east. At least it is in Iran (don’t believe it? who cares!). But you have GUN Association called National Riffle Association. And that is a very powerful association. To me, the culture of gun and killing more fits your life style than mine. Your movies will have no story if there is no gun significantly involved in the story. The movie then becomes boring to most of you.
    Just look at the statistics of the homocides in the US and then you tell me if you really still think that “killing” is a strange and un-usual phenomena in your culture and in your society. I am not even talking about the “generous” killings committed by your armed forces around the world. Just look at the realites of your society and see if you won’t feel ashamed of your ignorance.

  • Kat

    You don’t need guns, you just stone em to death, cut their throat, or disembowel them. Who needs guns when you’re a bunch of barbarians who tear a dead body to pieces fighting for a piece of flesh like a wild dog. It is indeed a hoot to see you condemn our society when you can’t see the wrongs of your own, where honor killings occur, fingers are removed if you steal, brutality is not limited to stoning. For example, in late May 1990, in the city of Neyshabour (northeastern Iran), a woman charged with adultery was thrown off a 10-story building. The execution was carried out in public, and the victim died on impact.
    On August 10, 1994, in the city of Arak, a woman was sentenced to death by stoning. According to the ruling of the religious judge, her husband and two children were forced to attend the execution. The woman urged her husband to take the children away, but to no avail. A truck full of stones was brought in to be used during the stoning. In the middle of the stoning, although her eyes had been gouged out, the victim was able to escape from the ditch and started running away, but the regime’s guards recaptured her and shot her to death.† †Just look at the realities of your society and see if you won’t feel ashamed of your ignorance. But I think you are too much into the jihadi mindset to see straight or you’re just too stupid. You’re so god damned proud of Iran you had to come to Canada to hide out.
    Chicken shit like all your terrorist bretheren. Treat women like shit because it makes you ball-less bastards feel good. Hide behind women and children and force 5 year olds to handle machine guns. What pitiful losers.

  • Faramin

    Kat,
    You don’t need guns, you just stone em to death, cut their throat, or disembowel them. Who needs guns when you’re a bunch of barbarians who tear a dead body to pieces fighting for a piece of flesh like a wild dog. It is indeed a hoot to see you condemn our society when you can’t see the wrongs of your own, where honor killings occur, fingers are removed if you steal, brutality is not limited to stoning.
    I knew you would hurry to bite my ass again.
    Hey, that’s the difference between you and me I do see those problems and I do condemn them every opportunity I get. But that is not coming from the general public in Iran. That is coming from the criminal regime who runs the country and small number ultra-religious idiots like yourself. I clearly see you capable of doing the same thing if you get a hand on those you hate.
    And speaking of barbarism: barbarism is falling from every word that comes out of your dirty mouth. I would suggest you to walk to the front of a mirror and spit on it. That would be just fair.
    BTW, Do you know who is the guest of honour to your president these days? Crown Prince Abdollah of Saudi Arabia, the country where chopping heads accur every day. The country where cutting fingures for stealing happens everyday. Your president and Saudi Prince are almost near going to bed with each other. Have you seen those pictures or your eyes are as corrupt as your brain?
    Treating women badly? You have no Freaking idea but a generalization that you have been made to swallow. God knows what would happen when angry people like yourself, or many drunken people would do to their women if there was no fear of the police. You know that very well Kat, don’t you?
    Kat,
    Let me give you an advise. And I don’t mean any insult by this but just to help: YOU ARE MENTALLY SICK. Seek professional help.

  • Eileen

    Faramin,
    Let me give you an advise. And I don’t mean any insult by this [CLEARLY!] but just to help [CLEARLY!]: YOU ARE MENTALLY SICK!!! Seek professional help. In the meantime, go back to your swampy blog, drool and blow bubbles.
    We will NEVER be bludgeoned by the likes of you into becoming terrorist supporting, American hating jihadis such as you. If anything, you only underscore the value and necessity of attending to our crazy enemy until they exist no more. So just give it up, Faramin. Go blow.

  • http://healthy-elements.com Lynn

    Has the Middle East ever NOT been at war?
    Terrorists have learned to protect themselves by hiding among civilians.
    Complaining about the resulting civilian casualties on message boards is an effort to raise public ire that will put pressure on leaders – this would protect terrorists under the guise of protecting civilians.
    Meanwhile, terrorists think nothing of wrapping teenage boys and girls with explosives, and sending them to die – not amongst military targets, but among school children, woman shopping at local markets, and unarmed civilians at religious services…all the while sitting around and talking about peace and freedom.
    Many of our soldiers were killed by what at first appears to be civilians who, once they got close to the soldiers, simply blew themselves up.
    The untold story is that many soldiers have been killed trying not to hurt civilians. “No man has greater love than to give his life for his enemy.”
    Terrorists are counting on it.

  • Eileen

    Open Letter to Jeff,
    I could have written an email, but I choose to be transparent as you wish.
    Why is it that you allow a – at the very least – lying, terrorist supporter to continue to be in our midst? Obviously I’m speaking of Faramin. He’s been banned from many other blogs…
    And obviously, it is not just Kat and myself who have ‘gotten’ his message. Many of your commenters have observed the same. Two most honorable men serving in our military in Iraq have observed the same.
    You have banned people here who trolled and volleyed hatred YOUR way in a personal sense. But what about Faramin, who only spews hatred against all Americans every time he speaks? What about HIS lies, as you post about some journalism student’s little lies?
    Will you allow a terrorist supporter to carry on here ad nauseum without any consequence?
    Don’t your blog rules prevent hate speech? Didn’t you lobby against Google allowing it vis a vis Nazi sites?
    Do you allow Faramin to remain here for ‘entertainment value’ or for blog traffic numbers and comment counts as you purportedly support our efforts in the war against terror?
    Faramin is terror speak.
    Why do you allow him to continue bludgeoning us? Why do you give a terrorist supporter a mouthpiece?

  • kat

    Maybe Jeff wants us to get to know a terrorist–so we can understand how he thinks. Faramin is a prime example of a terrorist mentality. I have come to understand how easy it must be to brainwash a terrorist. Faramin lives in Canada and look at how easily he has become brainwashed in terrorist doublespeak. He lashes out at Saudi Arabia for the exact same atrocities Iran is guilty of–every muslim nation is. To know Faramin is to understand Osama and his ilk.

  • http://www.buzzmachine.com Jeff Jarvis

    The honest truth is that I don’t read Faramin comments. Why bother? I’ve never come across anyone so predictable. He’s one big kneed, jerking. So I don’t waste my time reading him (and a few others and certain scuffles when they start). If lots of commenters tell me there’s a big problem there, I’ll address it. But I pretty much think he’s a nonentity. Maybe you should treat him that way as well.

  • franky

    We can see here exactly how dearly some people believe in free speech. Are you really so terrified of what Faramin says that you want him banned? What because he’s predictable? Are not Eileen and Kat predictable as clockwork?
    Where is the hatespeak (what a 1984-term by the way)? He opposes US intervention in the Middle East and suddenly that’s hating (leaving aside the fact that the real hatred is always coming from Kat, by why would you want to be consistent in which voices you ban).
    “Two most honorable men serving in our military in Iraq have observed the same.” hahahaah what a hack you really are. So let’s just leave it up to the “most honorable men serving in our military in Iraq” as to who gets to speak and who doesn’t.
    Why do you come here, Eileen? You obviously hate to hear differing voices and yet this is the beauty of this forum. Why not solely post on LGF where you won’t have to hear any differing versions of what’s occurring in the world?
    Contemptible and revolting is the only way to view such as snake-like Open Letter (you know, so its transparent)

  • franky

    By the way, did you notice how the rest of the forum was trying to engage in a civil debate – Faramin politely responding to Matthew Goggins, and Matthew politely responding in turn.
    Let anyone here read through it, and see where it went wrong “Chicken shit like all your terrorist bretheren”. Might this be the first personal insult to drag the conversation down?
    Face it, Eileen and Kat can’t handle any conversations so proceed to bring down any civil debate by their insults and then demand their opponents be banned.
    I’ve said it before but hopefully won’t have to say it again – they’ve proved themselves in their own words and I have neither the interest nor the patience to acknowledge them further.

  • Eileen

    Thanks, Jeff. I’ll work on it.

  • Bob

    No, we need to build a memorial to their victims to remember why we hate them. We need to fear them. We need to understand them only insofar as is necessary to defeat them. To humanize them would be insane.
    Jeff, please, please stop calling yourself a liberal.
    Humanizing, er, humans is not the same as justifying their (mis)deeds.
    I’m not sure if you just don’t get it or if you simply enjoy playing alpha male.

  • Skate

    I don’t know if Faramin is a troll, but the comments I read (not all of his posts) in this thread were far more reasonable than Kat’s or Eileen’s.
    Jeff, I’m very disappointed that you see fit to condemn Faramin but give Kat and Eileen’s brand of invective a free pass! The most hate I’ve seen in this thread has come from them!
    I realize that you might not wish to broach civility by condemning anyone in your threads, but your comments that Kat might wish to ignore Faramin as you do suggests that you think Kat is the civil one.

  • http://www.buzzmachine.com Jeff Jarvis

    I think it is fair to say that Kat and Eileen pour gas and matches on the fire.
    I should say that I don’t read any of these exchanges.
    It usually starts with Faramin piping up and then they fire and I turn off, as do most readers, I believe.
    The fight is obvious; the boundaries well known; there’s nothing new they’re adding; I wish they’d take the fight outside.

  • Name Withheld

    If you are a terrorist if you are deliberately targeting civilians then
    Was the firebombing of Dresden and Tokyo terrorist attacks or justified military strikes?
    Was the atombombs dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki terrorist attacks or justified military strikes?
    (I’m guessing I’m going to be called a terrorist lover by Kat now, but since she obviously thinks that about anyone that is to the left of her on a political scale I really don’t care)

  • Faramin

    Jeff,
    I think it is fair to say that Kat and Eileen pour gas and matches on the fire.
    I should say that I don’t read any of these exchanges.

    But you were not implying that when you were responding to Eileen’s request to ban me. You were just demonizing me, only (see below):
    The honest truth is that I don’t read Faramin comments. Why bother? I’ve never come across anyone so predictable. He’s one big kneed, jerking. So I don’t waste my time reading him (and a few others and certain scuffles when they start). If lots of commenters tell me there’s a big problem there, I’ll address it. But I pretty much think he’s a nonentity. Maybe you should treat him that way as well.
    And here, a little honesty is in order Jeff:
    It usually starts with Faramin piping up and then they fire and I turn off, as do most readers, I believe.
    I prepared a long response to your unfair and biased comment against me, but I decided to put it aside for know. In that, I have been trying to tell your readers (the ones who agree with me and the ones who disagree, even the ones who hate me), that your accusations were baseless. Just to show them that I have always remained courteous and polite with those who were courteous, regardless of the level of disagreement. I have straight forward opinions, and yes they are harsh, as are the realities of our world today. But personal insults are not my way of action. But I agree, I REACT to the level of humiliting the offender, but as I said, I just REACT to them.
    You say that you wish “we” take it outside. There are months of history behind this and Well, despite what you say, it has been them who always attacked me first. Your post threats are still available. Re-read them. What am I saying? You know that very well already.
    BTW, I really have no interest having discussions, either here or outside here, with those who have proven to be the enemies of free speech.
    Franky and Skate:
    Thank you for standing up to defend freedom of speech.

  • Kat

    (it has been them who always attacked me first…… All I do is accuse anyone, who doesn’t agree with me, of being mentally sick
    because they don’t understand terrorism is an honorable thing where i come from ) Bwahahahaha.

  • Eileen

    Franky and Skate ‘would’ stand up for Faramin. Birds of a feather.
    Jeff is right that Faramin habitually ‘pipes up’ first. In this thread it started with him being rude to Lynn and calling her ignorant. So what else is new? Except I get tired of the incessent insults and terror talk. Apparently so does Kat.
    And yes, I also invite anyone who cares to, to read the history of these exchanges on this blog. I cannot count the times Faramin has hurled insults my way when I sat mute in response….
    I am not interested in adding fuel to any fire. But I am also not interested in being bludgeoned continuously with terror speak by Faramin, or by any of his ‘cohorts’.
    That two of our Guys in Iraq observe the same speaks volumes.

  • Eileen

    And Jeff,
    I remain astounded that you allow terror speak – as observed by many – to continue here on your blog. If you don’t read Faramin you wouldn’t know the extent of it. Have I ‘in fact’ added any match to his fire??! Some of us really don’t appreciate listening to a terrorist supporter spewing hatred in our midst. As you were offended by Britt, so am I offended by Faramin’s constant terror talk.
    Kat provides a solid defense. When she is then ‘also’ bludgeoned, I back her up. Many others have spoken out against the terror talk around here. It’s real.
    It’s not just a

  • Eileen

    Sorry,
    Screwed up. It’s not just a little ‘fight’.

  • franky

    MUST….NOT…..RESPOND….TO….STUPIDITY!!!!!!!!
    Ahhhhhhhhhh it’s no good.
    What in all that’s holy is terror talk? learn that on Limbaugh? so hate-speech, now terror talk? jesus, you’re a real little commissar of speech aren’t you? so you couldn’t defend the hate talk accusation, so now you’ve thrown out another newly-invented term, terror talk?
    (of course for the all time mangling of the English language it will be hard to top “I remain astounded that you allow terror speak”).
    Of course the real racist/homophobe who posts here provides a “solid defence”.
    I know, I know, I know I’ve promised to stop posting on these two nutcases, but how can one resist popping these balloons of stupidity?
    And Jeff what’s up with you? Eileen’s asked you at least 10 times to ban Faramin (and two of our honorable boys serving our country in our noble liberation of Iraq agree with her) – so what’s the delay, man? Can’t you see she’s “astounded”? This is real, man.
    So again the question (that of course won’t be answered because it can’t be answered) – why continue posting here if differing opinions terrify one sooooooo much?

  • Skate

    Help, Help!!! Someone who disagrees with Kat and Eileen is allowed to post in this forum. Quick! Ban him before he and all the “terrorist worshipers” take over the forum!
    Well, actually I’m not “pro Faramin” as much as I am “anti Kat and Eileen.” I haven’t read many of his threads, but I haven’t seen any quotes from him that are as vitriolic as those from Kat and Eileen.
    I enjoy reading these threads and the debate but as for those two, it seems pointless to debate them since they don’t actually debate, they are simply name callers. In the 50′s they might have called everyone they disagreed with Reds, now the scare word is “Terrorist.” Read my posts Kat and Eileen, I’ve never sympathized with terrorists or terrorism yet you have tried to say that I have to try and avoid debating on the issues.
    This thread is flatlined. I’m calling it. Kat and Eilleen may still call people names but I’m not sure that is a sign of life….

  • Eileen

    Franky,
    I ignored all your insults before, AND Skate’s!
    Most of all, what you say makes no sense. Drinking?
    “Eileen’s asked you at least 10 times to ban Faramin (and two of our honorable boys serving our country in our noble liberation of Iraq agree with her) – so what’s the delay, man?”
    Make that two times, including my last post, Franky. Be honest. Can you be?
    You have no respect for LT and Howard? Pity.
    Stupidity. Your – and clearly Faramin’s – favorite word. Brilliant!

  • Eileen

    Actually Skate,
    What’s the use, eh? I wholeheartedly agree.
    Quick to judge, are you? Maybe you should do a little more Faramin reading. And read more of Kat…and me…and LT, Howard, and so many others…..before you choose to judge and hurl insults toward Kat and me.

  • Eileen

    Franky, who says:
    “Of course the real racist/homophobe who posts here provides a “solid defence”.”
    Where did you say you were from, Franky? Can’t be from the U.S. We don’t spell defense, defence.

  • http://www.buzzmachine.com Jeff Jarvis

    And Franky, you’ve thrown a few matches yourself.
    Listen, people, if you want to have a place to shout the same things at each other over and over, please, one of you, start a blog and do it there. Once you all start up one of these bitchslapfests, you may note that the room tends to empty or at least others don’t join in.

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Wow, don’t check in for a day, and look what I miss!
    I’ve still been very busy this week, no time for internet surfing and/or blogging.
    I still want to respond to Faramin, but a few words first on the argument in this thread over “terror-speak”.
    I disagree with some major points of Faramin, but I respect his right to disagree with me, and he seems to be arguing and discussing things in good faith.
    If Kat and Eileen or anyone else can’t answer him civillly and intellectually, then that doesn’t speak well for how well they have thought through their own positions.
    “Terror speak” can always be countered by deomcracy and peace speak, so I don’t see why people are so put our by Faramin’s points, even if he gets a little heated sometimes.
    And I do not consider Faramin’s criticisms of the U.S. to be terror speak!

  • franky

    Jeff,
    I’ve never denied tossing molotovs. I do feel bad about it sometimes because I know how much you hate it when it descends to this level, but I also feel that the malicious posts should be responded to and responded with force – and one example is the calling of the muslim point of view “terror speak”. Agree with Faramin or not, and there are tons of things I do not agree with Faramin on, he represents probably the majority view in the muslim world regarding our current adventures in the middle east. I find that to be of interest whether I’m seeing holes in his argument or he’s telling me something I didn’t know.
    But to the larger point I find this tendency among some parts of the pro-war crowd to want to ban opinions they differ with very, very disturbing (it reminds me of the insanity of the soldiers of political correctness in the 1980s and early 1990s). They appear to me like the modern teetotalers – it’s not enough that they simply don’t want to hear these opinions, they don’t want anyone hearing these opinions. Simply described, that’s fascisitic.
    But I feel like a flogger standing over a dead horse here, so will save the rest for the next discussion.

  • http://sunbreak.blogspot.com Das

    Blaser’s blase-ness is wrong and fake. The question must bounce back to him: why are you not as angry or angrier than Jeff at the mass murderers? Why does your value structure allow for such equanimity towards mass murderers and such scorn for an innocent bystander (Jeff)?
    Blaser illustrates why I (former Dem) needed to distance myself from people for whom mass slaughter is just an opening gambit to dialogue. Good on ya Jeff for sticking up for yourself in the face of obdurate idiocy.

  • Faramin

    Matthew Goggins,
    I’ve read some of your comments and yes and I disagree with many points that you’ve made. But I applaud you for the courage you’ve shown in supporting my right to free speech in the climate when anyone who talks about my right to free speech is branded as “terrorist supporter”. What you’ve done here is extra-ordinary because I don’t see even a portion of your courage in many of the rightwingers on this site, to stand up for the prinicples of free speech and defend, not me, but my RIGHT to speak my mind. In fact, I do believe it is a shame to keep talking about democracy and freedom and not defending the basics of such a claim. I wish many others, inculding Jeff would learn from what you’ve done here. For that, I do thank you sir.
    Franky and Skate,
    Franky and Skate ‘would’ stand up for Faramin. Birds of a feather.
    I am not surprised at all that you’ve been accused of this by, well, “most honest” commenter here. I do believe, without such attacks, she has not much to say.
    And you Eileen,
    You said I’ve been banned from many sites. Can you bring a couple of examples as what sites? You lied again. Didn’t you? I HAVE NOT BEEN BANNED FROM ANY SITE OR BLOG. Although even THAT wouldn’t make my point of view wrong.
    Also, you claim that I started insulting Lynn by calling her “ignorant”. You lied again. I did not call here ignorant.
    As part of a broader civil dsicussion providing some un-disputable facts, this is what I said:
    …Just look at the realites of your society and see if you won’t feel ashamed of your ignorance.
    May be your English is not good enough to understand that there is a difference between calling someone “ignorant” and complaining about the “ignorance” of the person towards some facts. To complete my “English lecture” to you, you have to undersatnd that “ignorance” in this context means “lack of knowledge” about the issue and it is not necessarily meant as an insult. But I’m not surprised that you picked the part that suited your purpose. Others can read my complete comment and judge for themselves. BTW, let’s not forget that I was replying to a comment that implies that “if you are from middle-east, killing must have been a part of your life style and it must be very normal to you”. I am not surprised you fail to see the depth of the insult in this irresponsible comment. After all, you yourself are the one who shoots at everybody when getting mad.
    I would like to let everybody know again that you are the one who felt that I had to be gotten rid of, by referring me to CIA. I deeply believe you have serious problem with democary and freedom of speech. You have not only not apologized for your cheap and foolish and anti-democratic action, but you have kept insisting that it was a reason for you to be proud. In fact, what you did reminds me of those cheap spies in Iran who reported anybody who made anti-government comments to the intelligent services. They were bunch of un-educated fundamentalists and YOU ARE NO BETTER THAN THEM.
    In order to justify your actions, you keep saying that I have insulted you, Kat, Howard and LT. YOU, KAT and Howard deserved what you got, because I just REACTED to your bad-mouthing. But although I criticized LT for ignoring the evidence I was providing him to back my arguments, I did not insult him, although he was in serious disagreement with me too and although he too wasn’t very polite with me either. But at least, I could see some honour in him and THAT was what prevented me of dealing with him the way I dealt with you three.

  • Kat

    http://www.pejmanesque.com
    Faramin:
    I choose my words very carefully when I tell you to go straight to Hell. I’ll link to whomever I damn well please on my blog, and Jarvis has loads of links to Iranian blog sites, and other websites, which your dull-witted ass would know if you bothered to check. Furthermore, I don’t need your imbecilic lectures on what duties I owe my “countrymen.”
    Anyone who tries to politicize the discussion of a calamitous natural disaster with such pig-ignorant horses*** has no humanity of his own. Never comment on my site again–just content yourself with writing anti-Semitic bile against “Zionists” (read “Jews”) on that hate site which is your blog, you pitiful excuse for a human being. Any further comments you make here will be deleted–I don’t need to make my bandwidth available to halfwits like you. Nor do I need to suffer through reading the stupid and illiterate remarks of a lobotomized cockroach who thinks that he is fooling anyone with pretensions to “humanity,” while writing trash that would only appeal to the Neanderthals of Aryan Nation.
    I trust that is clear enough, Faramin, although, I suppose there remains the possibility that your two brain cells can’t even hope to process what I’m telling you.
    Posted by: Pejman Yousefzadeh at December 26, 2003 11:11 PM

  • http://thebronxblogger.blogspot.com Matthew Goggins

    Faramin,
    I wish I had time to get back to you sooner, but I am finally here.
    Abu-Ghraib prison abuses showed that only a couple of low ranking soldiers will become the scapegoats. not the high ranking ones who have made the policy of torture. Despite numerous calls and evidence, Sanchez was cleared of wrong doing. Rumsfeld still is your Defense Secretary and you name it.
    Abu-Ghraib was a horrible crime, and there may have been other abuses we don’t know about. I agree with you that higher-ranking officers have not been held responsible. I think that is very bad, but that doesn’t make the low-ranking convicted soldiers scapegoats: they have earned any punishment that they receive.
    In any case, their commanding officers should be reprimanded and/or prosecuted, and it looks like they won’t be.
    I don’t know if Donald Rumsfeld was responsible for the abuses. If he was, then he should be relieved of his position.
    I do believe the policies of the US, especially in last few years, have made [the Islamic extemists] even stronger than they could even imagine to be. That by itself is a disaster. “Thanks” to the US.
    President Bush’s policies were allegedly going to lead to havoc and turmoil in the Arab “street”. Inflamed Muslims everywhere would swanp the recruiting offices of Al Qaeda and like-minded groups.
    Instead, militants and terrorists have become mired (and annihilated and humiliated) in the quagmires of Afghanistan and Iraq (when I say quagmires, I mean for the resistance, not the coalition forces). And democracy and reform seem to have gained momentum in places like Lebanon and Egypt.
    America has imflamed passions, yes. But as allies of Israel, we would have done that anyway. What is different now is that we inspire a lot more respect. We inspired Libya’s Khadaffi to surrender his weapons programs without so much as shooting a bullet in his direction.
    As for your second point, your policy of supporting Saddam, cost ONE MILLION LIVES. Each one of them as valuable as the lives of the Americans. Please don’t look at it so simplisticaly. It wasn’t.
    We didn’t have a policy of supporting Saddam. Saddam’s regime was a client state of the Soviet Union. France had a policy of selling weapons and nuclear power technology to Saddam, and Germany had a policy of selling other kinds of technology to Saddam.
    We had a policy of treating him like the pariah he was, a sociopathic admirer of Stalin.
    That policy was in force until we became concerned that Iran might be on the verge of whupping Iraq’s butt in their long and devastating war. So we nudged the scales a little by giving Saddam some satellite reconnaissance photos of Iranian troop formations, and selling him some helicopters.
    Why did we do this?
    Faramin, imagine you were in President Reagan’s position. The CIA tells you, the President of the United States, that the Iraqi Republican Guard might be broken into pieces by Iran. Should you help Saddam a little, and try to maintain something of a balance of power? Is it in the interests of the people of the United States of America that Iran seize the oil fields of Iraq and establish control over the whole Persian Gulf? What would you, Faramin, do, if you were the guardian of the interests of the United States?
    Would you, President Faramin, reach out to Ayatollah Khoemini and try to convince him that contrary to popular belief in Iran, we are not the Great Satan? Would you ask the Ayatollah that if Iran wins its never-ending war against Iraq, would he please refrain from doing anything that might be prejudicial to the interests or the security of the United States and its allies?
    Or would you reluctantly conclude that a victorious Iran would be an unmitigated catastrophe for the United States? Would you conclude that you should try to use Saddam as some kind of buffer to keep Iran from becoming an uninhibited incubator of Muslim theocracy and terrorism in the most unstable region of the world?
    These are rhetorical questions, but they are the same questions that led our government to fool around with Saddam despite your viewing such intervention as evil, perhaps, and harmful to Iran. If you were our president at this time, this would have been an option you would have been forced to consider, and which you very likely would have chosen yourself.
    In any case, we are not and were not responsible for the million lives killed in that war. That was Saddam’s doing. We are only responsible for what we did.
    How can I not be skeptical of the Administration who grossly lied to its own people as what its real intention of the invasion of Iraq was?
    They spoke of WMD as the primary reason. That didn’t exist. They spoke of Saddam’s links to Al-qaeda. That wasn’t true. They claimed that Saddam had a major hand in the attacks of September 11. That was nothing but a lie.
    [...]
    And the facts tell me, as it should tell you, that the Bush Administration is nothing but a gang of liars who have no regards for human life and dignity.
    Faramin, you know a lot more than I will probably ever know about Iran, and about American relations with Iran.
    But I can assure you that President Bush did not lie to you or me about the reasons for invading Iraq.
    I followed President Bush’s foreign policy and war initiatives very closely, and listened to and read his major foreign policy speeches.
    President Bush’s primary case to the American people for invading Iraq was always very simple and straightforward: 9/11 taught us that Islamist terrorists have no scruples about killing as many people as possible, about killing as many Americans as possible. Saddam Hussein has been at war with the United States since 1991, and has no scruples about doing anything within his power to hurt the United States. In order to keep Saddam Hussein from becoming a state sponsor of Al Qaeda or some other terrrorist group, and to keep him from possibly allowing terrrorists to have access to weapons of mass destruction, we must remove him from power.
    That’s it, that was the rationale, always has been, always will be. Clear as a bell – DONG!
    Now President Bush wanted to get Tony Blair and Colin Powell to hitch onto the invasion bandwagon, so he agreed to make a little detour through the U.N. This involved invoking weapons of mass destruction as a casus belli for the purpose of getting U.N. Security Council resolutions.
    But this was never the primary justification for the war, and President Bush never said it was.
    He also never claimed, and no one in his administration ever claimed, that Saddam had anything to do with September 11th. In fact, the official White House line was that it was not likely that Saddam Hussein helped with the September 11th attacks.
    As for the Bush administration being nothing but a gang of liars with no regard for human life and dignity, you are entitled to your opinion. And if you base it on facts I will respect your opinion.
    But I have followed politics for a long time, and I have never seen such a frank and honest discussion of foreign policy and war as I have seen with President Bush. He said what he meant, and he meant what he said. I really could hardly disagree with you more strongly about this.
    And yes, I do hope that the American people … assist us to get rid of the criminal rulers of our country.
    Faramin, you and I are brothers, citizens of the world, and if your people ask America for assistance, we will be very happy to do so.
    Peace and love.

  • Faramin

    Kat,
    There are many Kats in the world. You are not alone.
    More than 16 months ago, a day after Iran’s earthquake and out of anger that Pejman (a supposed Iranian) had chosen to ignore thousands of Iranian blogs where there were plenty of updates on earthquak and instead he had referred his readers to Jeff Jarvis for info, for the first and last time, I left a comment at his ultra-writeging site. But I never went back to read his comment there. I did now and understood that the guy didn’t want me to comment in there anymore. I didn’t know that at the time, but even if I knew, I wouldn’t comment there, as per the site owner’s wish. I did check that site out now. and I noticed there was a comment criticizing the site owner for his comment towards me. Looks like you have chosen to take the piece you wanted. Here is part of that comment:
    You have chosen a wrong method to reply to a criticism.
    Aside from his extreme political views, his blog has nothing but care for the people……
    Posted by Jessy at December 29, 2003 09:38 AM

    Sorry to spoil your “victory” celebration.
    Was this one of the “many” sites where your alike claimed that I’ve been banned from commenting?

  • Faramin

    Matthew,
    I quickly read your comment. I will get back to that, will read it more carefully and will reply to it.
    But before that, I would like to thank you for taking time and writing to that length.

  • Kat

    Faramin–you said you had never been banned–I simply provided evidence to the contrary. You sure know how to wiggle and lie. You were angry so you were justified. It was a right wing site so you were justified. It was US policy so you were justified. They were Jews so you were justified. And the beat goes on…………………………and on………………..

  • Faramin

    Kat,
    I just tried on my own site to see what happens if someone is banned. This is the message the banned person gets when trying to leave comment on the site:
    “Banned by webmaster. Your comments will not be added”
    At the site you claimed that I had been banned, I am not getting such message. So technically, you are still wrong. I can still leave a comment there, although it might be deleted. But I CAN LEAVE A COMMENT there at this time.
    See? Your evidence was phony just like your logic.

  • Kat

    Your own words to haunt you” I did now and understood that the guy didn’t want me to comment in there anymore.” But obfuscate if it makes you feel better. You are a pro at that.
    You lie about not knowing this. Eileen pointed this post out to you months ago. That’s how I became aware of it. She posted this along with evidence of your Jew hating comments which of course you deny now. It must be a genetic thing–blaming everyone else but yourself. The real phony here is you–a terrorist asskisser pretending to be something else.
    FROM THE TERRORIST TRAINING MANUAL:
    ìHe told us that to carry a magazine to keep a distance between each other and if the federal agents, if they do catch us at the airport, to cry like a baby.î
    Need I say more??Cry like a baby………….

  • Eileen

    http://twistedspinster.com/index.php?p=215
    5/1/2004:
    “I just wanted to rescue this bit of news from Jeff Jarvisí blog, where it has been abandoned to the ravages of a troll called ìFaramin.î Needless to say, due to comment moderation, that wonít happen here. This leaves us free to discuss this latest atrocity. I donít know how permanent SFgateís links are, so here is the whole thing:”

  • Faramin

    FROM THE TERRORIST TRAINING MANUAL:
    ìHe told us that to carry a magazine to keep a distance between each other and if the federal agents, if they do catch us at the airport, to cry like a baby.”

    Kat,
    Seems like you have access to material that I don’t. Well, I don’t need them. Do you?
    Listen, If someone (an ultra rightwinger) doesn’t like me (no surprise there), well s/he might ask me not to leave comments in his/her blog. Then I won’t, without even being banned. Why is so difficult for your brain to process?
    BTW, it was said that I was banned on many blogs. Why are you stuck at only one? What else?
    Hey 007 Eileen,
    What is the purpose of quoting from somebody who obviously hates me? What does it prove? You hate me too, but who cares about what you think about me.
    Kat and Eileen,
    I’ll let you two have the final words in this thread if it helps releasing the pressure you two are suffering from. But I suggest you not to, because you will sink even further with every word.

  • Karen
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