05-11-2007, 04:56 PM
(This post was last modified: 05-11-2007, 05:50 PM by Husky.)
Depressing, but something people already know. Christo army of US can't help behaving the same way it always has wherever it's been deployed.
WASPies missed out on original Crusades (since WASPyism didn't exist then), so now want to re-enact the christo gory glory - in Iraq, this time.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Friday May 11, 08:24 PM
<b>US troops may be shaky on ethics: survey</b>
The US military commander in Iraq told his troops to fight by the rules after a <b>Pentagon survey found many soldiers and Marines back torture and would not report colleagues for killing or injuring civilians.</b>
"This fight depends on securing the population, which must understand that we - not our enemies - occupy the moral high ground," General David Petraeus wrote in a letter dated May 10.
<!--emo&:roll--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ROTFL.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ROTFL.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Petraeus, who took command in February to oversee a troop "surge" aimed at securing Baghdad, said the argument that torture can elicit quick information was "wrong".
"Beyond the basic fact that such actions are illegal, history shows that they also are frequently neither useful or necessary," he said in the one-page letter, which was obtained by Reuters.
The Pentagon survey of ethics, released last week, showed that<b> only 40 per cent of marines and 55 per cent of US Army soldiers deployed in Iraq said they would report a fellow serviceman for killing or injuring an innocent Iraqi.</b>
It also said well over one-third of soldiers and marines believe torture should be allowed to obtain information that could save the lives of US troops or gain knowledge about Iraqi insurgents.
Petraeus said that while seeing a "fellow trooper killed by a barbaric enemy can spark frustration, anger and a desire for immediate revenge", all troops "must observe the standards and values that dictate that we treat noncombatants and detainees with dignity and respect."
Claims of US mistreatment of Iraqi detainees and civilians have shadowed American forces in Iraq - from revelations of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in 2004 to reports of the <b>Nov. 19, 2005, killing of 24 Iraqi civilians by Marines in Haditha.</b>
According to the survey, conducted between August 28 and October 3, 2006, <b>about 10 per cent of the 1,320 soldiers and 447 Marines questioned said they had mistreated civilians, either through physical violence or damage to their personal property.</b>
It also showed increasing rates of mental health problems for troops on extended or multiple deployments. US Defence Secretary Robert Gates has extended tours for US soldiers in Iraq to up to 15 months instead of one year.
In the letter, Petraeus, who is on his third tour of duty, said that "while we are warriors, we are also all human beings", and urged his troops that if they felt stress they should talk to "your chain of command, <b>your chaplain,</b> or a medical expert."<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->These christo Americans should be sent to the Hague and tried for war crimes. Too late to try them for their past crimes in Vietnam and elsewhere, but Iraq is the present. (And it's good for the tribunal in the Hague too, to finally start trying war criminals.)
And in other news: the US congress passes a resolution to teach the Indoos how to treat other Indoos with 'compassion'. We don't need lessons from terrorist waspies who torture and kill Iraqi civilians, thanks.
Couple of days old news:
Similar news covered at http://www.smh.com.au/news/World/Cheney-ec...8995196965.html
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Wednesday May 16, 09:17 AM
<b>Cheney eclipses President Bush's wealth</b>
US President George W Bush held assets worth $US7.5 million to $US20 million ($A9 million to $A24 million) last year, but was eclipsed by his vice president, according to financial records.
Bush's assets included his 650 hectare ranch in Texas, valued at $US1 million to $US5 million ($A1.2 million to $A6 million), where he usually spends his vacations.
He also reported assets of $US775,689 ($A933,721) from a limited liability company organised in 2003 to produce trees for commercial sales, which were expected in 2007.
Among his holdings were certificates of deposit, Treasury notes, a qualified diversified trust, and $US116,000 ($A140,000) assets of the GWB Rangers Corp, which is wholly owned by Bush from when he was co-owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team.
Cheney reported assets valued at $US21 million to around $US100 million ($A25 million to $A120 million). Cheney gained much of his wealth from his former role heading oil service firm Halliburton Co.
Cheney's largest holdings included investments in an American Century Investments International Bond Fund and a Vanguard short-term tax-exempt fund. He has 100,000 Halliburton stock options that are unexercised and designated for charity.
The financial disclosure statements only give the value of assets in ranges.
Bush reported gifts totalling $US12,364 ($A14,882) last year, including three separate sets of fishing equipment.
White House staff gave Bush two benches made of wood taken from the president's ranch, valued at $US1,600 ($A1,925), and a pair of $US185 ($A222) cuff links.
The vice president reported receiving $US121,674 ($A146,462) in gifts, including three fishing rods, a pair of $US615 ($A740) leather hunting boots and a $US399 ($A480) cowboy hat.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Wolfowitz to resign from World Bank<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Behind the Success or failure of every Man, there is a Woman. <!--emo&
--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->
06-10-2007, 05:52 AM
(This post was last modified: 06-10-2007, 05:57 AM by Husky.)
Some comedy at last. Predictable, expected, but funny.
If US <i>will</i> keep giving moolah to TSP and the tyrant communist government of NK to be (mis)used, at least we may take comfort from the fact that there's less to fund the global missionizing crusade.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Sunday June 10, 08:31 AM
<b>US unveils new charges that North Korea misused UN aid</b>
Photo : AFPÂ
UNITED NATIONS (AFP) - US diplomats have confronted the UN Development Program (UNDP) with new allegations that its funds were misused and improperly diverted by North Korea, the US mission to the UN said Saturday.
The mission essentially confirmed a report in Saturday's Washington Post citing US charges that nearly three million dollars in UNDP aid was used by the Pyongyang regime to buy property in France, Britain and Canada.
Millions more went to a "North Korean institution linked to a bank alleged to handle arms deals," the daily said, citing a secret State Department report based on witness testimonies and internal business records.
A spokesman for the New York-based mission told AFP that US Ambassador to the UN Zalmay Khalilzad and deputy ambassador Mark Wallace met with UNDP administrator Kemal Dervis Thursday and presented him with the new charges.
"The information we provided indicated an apparent misuse and diversion of UNDP funds, business dealings with certain suspect entities affiliated with the DPRK (North Korea), UNDP procurement of potential dual-use equipment and information related to further use of counterfeit US currency in the DPRK country program," the mission said in a statement.
The Washington Post said the dual-use equipment involved global-positioning equipment, computers and computer accessories, and a device that can determine the isotopic composition of elements.
The daily quoted a UNDP spokesman as saying the equipment was purchased for weather-forecasting purposes but that the US probe found that the equipment could also be used in a weapons program.
Pyongyang allegedly transferred 2.8 million dollars in UNDP funds to diplomatic missions in Europe and New York to "cover buildings and houses," including buying buildings in France, the United Kingdom and Canada.
US diplomats also charged that "UNDP paid nearly 2.7 million for 'goods and equipment' to a North Korean financial institution linked to Tanchon Commercial Bank (also known as Changgwang Credit Bank)," the paper said.
But in a statement released by its spokesman David Morrison Saturday, UNDP said : "the allegations do not correspond to our records, which we have examined very carefully over the past six months."
"UNDP takes the allegations very seriously," he added, noting that the US mission had been asked to "provide all available documentation that would substantiate the allegations and facilitate UNDPs immediate review of them."
The US mission however said that Dervis pledged to probe the matter, provide relevant information and "cease doing business with suspect entities."
"We are encouraged by Administator Dervis's commitment to address these concerns and correct past practices in the DPRK country program," a mission spokesman said.
The new charges surfaced barely a week after the United Nations said an internal audit of three UN agencies in North Korea found no proof of earlier US allegations of the systematic diversion of large-scale UN funding to the Pyongyang regime.
But UN auditors did highlight problems including "independence of staff hiring, foreign currency transactions and access to local projects."
In January, a US probe headed by Wallace charged that North Korea had, since 1998 and with the complicity of UNDP, "systematically perverted" the UN aid program "for the benefit of the Kim Jong Il regime, rather than the people of North Korea."
North Korea then angrily denied the US allegations, describing them as part of a smear campaign by hardliners in Washington to try to derail US-North Korean talks.
Following the US claims in January, UN chief Ban Ki-moon called for an audit of UN programs and funding in countries such as North Korea.
In March, UNDP suspended operations in North Korea after Pyongyang failed to meet operational changes endorsed and mandated by the development agency's executive board.
The changes include ending all payments in hard currency to Pyongyang and discontinuing sub-contracting of local staff via government recruitment as of March 1.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
06-11-2007, 01:14 PM
(This post was last modified: 06-11-2007, 01:26 PM by dhu.)
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The Wind from the Southâ Anti-White Populism
By Steve Sailer
For several years, we have been pointing out that, despite rosy predictions that Latin American immigrants are "natural Republicans,"<b> a mighty storm is brewing in Latin Americaâand that it will eventually reach the U.S.</b>
Recently, even the Mainstream Media [MSM] has started to notice that something is going on down south.
In <b>"Indian movement seeks 'to expel white invasion,'" </b>Martin Arostegui wrote in the Washington Times (June 24):
"SANTA CRUZ, Bolivia -- A growing indigenous movement has helped topple successive governments in Bolivia and Ecuador and, angered by the destruction of Andean coca crops, now threatens the stability of other countries where Indians are in the majority. Drawing support from European leftists and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, <b>the long-marginalized Indians are tasting political influence for the first time since the Spanish conquest and beginning to wrest power from South America's white elites. </b>The leader of Bolivia's Movement to Socialism party (MAS), Evo Morales, talks about 'uniting Latin America's 135 Indian nations to expel the white invasion, which began with the landing of Columbus in 1492.'"
Somebody forgot to send History the memo. Still, Fukuyama wasn't completely wrong:<b> what had changed was that people felt less need to dress up their struggles for power in fine-sounding ideologies. </b>History had reverted to what it always had been before theÂ French Revolution made ideology au courant. AsÂ Lenin had said, the eternal question is:Â "Who? Whom?"
For the U.S., domestically, the ongoingÂ racial radicalization of the darker-skinned people of Latin America portends difficulties.<b> The immigrant stream from Latin America is increasingly less white, as regions farther south in Mexico are tapped. We are even seeing hundreds of thousands of pure Indians who speakÂ no Spanish. </b>Next year's Mexican election will be closely followed on Spanish-language television by tens of millions of immigrants in the U.S. And then this vast anti-white movement might begin to surface here.
06-12-2007, 08:53 AM
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2007, 07:46 PM by dhu.)
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->This anti-white movement in Latin America will likely make the less white Hispanics more resentful and hostile towardÂ non-Hispanic whites in America.
This could set off massive social change.
<b>What is often forgotten is that their grandparents viewed blacks the same way. </b>That's why corporations named famous food brands "Uncle Ben" and "Aunt Jemima"âthe connotation was that by buying these products, you were virtually partaking of the rich man's luxury of having your own smiling, nodding black cook.
The downside, of course, was that when blacks turned against their old jobs, many ended up resorting to crime to make money.
<b>I suspect that the anti-white movements in Latin America will, sooner or later, set off a revulsion among Hispanics in this country against servile jobs roughly similar to the Black Pride reaction of the 1960s.</b>
It is often said that the "Negro" could be "tamed" to work on the plantations unlike the Indian, who would instead waste away. Situation seems to have been reversed since past 50 years. This means that the slash and burn American labor cycle is at most 200 years, not including acceleration effects of modernity. Why the Indians became work material all of a sudden? Is it modernistic effects of Communist ideology?
Some big change is going on in South America, first time they are raising voice against Church. I think it is more to do with communism or left movement/revolution. They started environment/Green peace movement, but it is more to do with Marxist revolution.
They were able to sow discontent among natives. We are seeing same in India.
Obama camp attacks Hillary's Indian links
: Called her Hillary Clinton, senator (D-Punjab)
And now, feet in the mouth: Obama: We screwed up
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>According to Reich, the "myth of individualism" came into our culture through the popular stories of Horatio Alger in the last century. </b>Ragged Dick, the hero of these stories, rose from a lowly station in life by dint of individual effort to earn a respectable job and the promise of a better life. The heroic individual became our cultural ideal. Link - EFFECTIVE TEAMWORK
06-24-2007, 02:15 PM
(This post was last modified: 06-24-2007, 02:25 PM by dhu.)
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Myth: Early Americans built this land on rugged individualism...
The U.S. government played a vital role in settling the West, including massive land purchases and giveaways, the Homestead Act, the Pony Express, agricultural colleges, rural electrification, telephone wiring, road-building, irrigation, dam-building, farm subsidies, and farm foreclosure loans. Without such help, settling the West would have been nearly impossible.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
06-24-2007, 02:23 PM
(This post was last modified: 06-24-2007, 02:26 PM by dhu.)
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Despite the occasional 12 Angry Men scenario, in which a brave individual (again an American hero) challenges the tyranny of the group, this experience drives home the greatest irony of American individualism: the very myth of individualism is groupthink itself. While individuals make very important contributions in this world, a pure individualist is about as desired by the system as the Unabomber. <b>The myth of individualism is little more than a useful form of divide-and-conquer social control.</b> link
07-24-2007, 07:30 AM
(This post was last modified: 07-24-2007, 07:57 AM by dhu.)
The Author thinks America will be succeeded by Europe. Atlanticist pretensions.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>The split that we're now seeing between Europe and America reminds me of the split between Rome and Byzantium that occurred in the end of the third century and into the fourth century. </b>You had a unitary imperial zone divided into two, and once you had two separate capitals, Rome and Constantinople, you immediately had rivalry rather than unity.Â
The decline and fall of the American empire
US conservatives will be jettisoned same as Byzantium.
Changing family values in the US
By I.J. Bhatia
Family values are eroding in America. Now the emphasis is on self-gratification. Permissiveness in society is rampant, giving rise to teenage pregnancies, single parenthood and live-in relationships.
Marriage has also been losing its social purpose. There is no longer any commitment or obligation. âTill death do us partâ has been replaced by âAs long as I am happy.â The marriage rate is dropping. Many Americans are today opting for what they call a live-in relationship, which, by its very nature, implies a lower level of commitment. More problematic still is the increase in single-parenting by choice.
I have been to the USA twice. My first visit was in 1994-95 when I stayed for about eight months. My experiences there had made me declare, âIf I am asked to give a single reason for all the ills facing the American society, I would mention the breakup of family, and the consequent erosion of spiritual, moral and social values.â
During my second visit in 1999, which lasted six months, I observed American families even more closely as the subject not only fascinates me but is on everybodyâs mind. A recent survey found that the overwhelming majority of Americansâ90 per cent of men and 92 per cent of womenâagree that the family is the most important institution in society.
It is generally agreed that, next to crime, the major problem facing the Americans is family breakdown. The reasons are not far to seek. Divorce and the entry of women, including mothers, into the workplace on a massive scale have much to do with it. The divorce rate in the USA has reached an abnormally high level of 60 per cent.
A leading psychiatrist says, âAmerica treats its families and its children worse than almost any other developed country.â He has cited the long-term ill-effects of divorce on children.
Consumerism and the need for two incomes have further eroded the family. Currently, in about 70 per cent of two-parent families, both spouses workâat least part time, if not full time.
For a working mother, every hour behind a desk is an hour not at home. The majority of American children do not have either parentâ mom or dad waiting for them after school.
A recent survey found that 42 per cent of children aged nine and under are left home alone at least occasionally, and half a million children aged 11 and under are left home alone after school every day. Even most six-month-old infants do not see mom most of the day.
Without proper contact with either of the parents, the children suffer neglect and have a lousy upbringing.
The most striking area of contrast between the American idea of family and the Indian idea of family has to do with the concept of the extended family. In fact, throughout the world, there is far less emphasis on the nuclear family of mother, father and child that has been the focal point of the family in the USA. Instead, in most cultures, several generations habitually live together. In India, it is not uncommon even today to see four generations living under the same roof.
The extended family has many advantages. Stephen R. Covey says, âGrandparents who show a great interest in their grandchildren are among the most precious people on this earth.â
It is unfortunate that in America, not even two per cent of grandparents live with their grandchildren.
What to talk of grandparents, it is estimated that 61 per cent of children in America live in a single-parent house-hold before they reach the age of 18. Obviously, one reason is the increase in the divorce rate. Single parenthood is also directly affected by the rise in the number of children born out of wedlock, especially to teenage girls.
The nuclear family of working father, stay-at-home mother and two to three children, predominated the 1960s. Changes that have taken place in the American family over the last 40 years could not have been foreseen. While the entry of women into the workplace gave women a taste of financial independence, it has also caused social upheavals.
In the early American model family, divorce was close to unthinkable. When women entered the workforce, they had to battle on two frontsâthe home and the office. It resulted in a rise in the divorce rate.
It is generally agreed that women who pursue careers or decide to leave unhappy marriages are putting their own interests first, at the expense of their childrenâs, and by extension, the institution of marriage, family, and the entire well-being of society.
Marriage has been the oldest and the most universal social institution in existence. Marriage, once both sacred and economically essential, can now be broken unilaterally on a whim. Marriages are not only breaking up in large numbers, but the institution itself is on the decline.
Marriage has also been losing its social purpose. There is no longer any commitment or obligation. âTill death do us partâ has been replaced by âAs long as I am happy.â
The marriage rate is dropping. Many Americans are today opting for what they call a live-in relationship, which, by its very nature, implies a lower level of commitment. More problematic still is the increase in single-parenting by choice.
âSingle parents by choiceâ declare fathers to be unnecessary. It is the response of those who declare that unwed motherhood is a womenâs right. The lifestyle of single parent is becoming socially accepted.
With this kind of cultural acceptance, it is little wonder that the percentage of out-of-wedlock births in America has risen to 600 per cent in just three decades. Today, nearly 35 per cent of all American births occur outside of marriage.
About one million teen pregnancies occur in the USA each year. They have the highest rate of teen pregnancy in the industrialised world and 65 per cent of the nationâs teen mothers never finish high school.
To prevent teen pregnancies, some school managements have advocated distribution of contraceptives through the canteens. But the proposal has drawn vehement protest from some parents.
A worried mother says: âI am not happy about this. I am not happy with the school management that says it doesnât matter what your family values are. What is the message we are sending to our teenagers? That premarital sex is okay? That sex at this young age is permissible as long as pregnancies can be avoided?â
The remedy suggested by the school management is worse than the disease. A better course would be to advocate single-sex classrooms.
Research has shown that grades improve in single-gender classes, as they are quieter and less disruptive. The 12 and 13-year-old children focus more on learning when they are free from the showing off and flirting that goes on in co-educational junior high schools.
Every day in the USA, 4,000 unborn babies are killed in the womb through abortion. It is the most wanton destruction of human life. By having an abortion, the girl who kills her own child to solve her problems rarely learns how to love. A mother with a killer instinct cannot give birth to responsible citizens.
There are many who hold abortion responsible for the high rate of crime in the USA. Mother Teresa once remarked, âI feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child, a direct killing of the innocent child, murder by the mother herself. Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love but to use violence to get what they want.â</b>
Jan Blanstone says, âMotherhood is a proud profession never intended for cowards.â
The significance of early bonding between an infant and its mother cannot be overemphasised. Researches have confirmed that many children who do not develop secure attachments are at a much greater risk of developing problems that increasingly plague the American society.
The majority of American children who are in child-care centres spend many hours in mediocre quality settings that are detrimental to their development. There is no substitute for motherâs care.
Orison Swett Mardenâs wife gave up her musical career to look after her home and children. He once wrote to his children, âYou have a marvellous mother. I want you to understand how much you owe to have unselfish devotion. No children ever received more love and better rearing than you have had. You should thank God every day for the greatest of all blessingsâa true mother.â
Dr Marden says that no woman can have a higher, holier or more important mission than the making of a happy home. Home-making is, and always will be, womanâs grandest vocation. In a happy home lies the very secret of human progress.
Many Americans are worried about the consequences of family breakdown in contemporary America. Dr Benjamin Spock in his book, Rebuilding American Family Values, says, âIf we want to influence the course of civilisation, we must restore basic human values in our children. I still believe that we should bring up our children with much greater emphasis on being generous and serving others, much less on getting ahead and acquiring more possessions.â
âThe wedding ceremony is no more a joyous occasion in the eyes of thousands of my ministerial brethren because 90 per cent of our young men are impure,â says a prominent American clergyman.
And a renowned family sociologist remarked, âThe State permits men and women who are moral degenerates to give birth to criminals and then taxes the community to build prisons and asylums.â
An expert says, âWe should demand three certificates from every applicant for marriageâfirst, a health and heritage certificate; second, a certificate showing that the bride has been properly trained in the science of household management; third, a certificate from the bridegroom showing that he has at least a fair prospect of maintaining a family.â
In India, a father would give the hand of his daughter to a boy who is well endowedâphysically, mentally and morallyâand has a regular source of income. And 90 per cent marriages in the country are arranged by parents. We believe that the parentsâ judgement is much better and sounder than that of young people who rely merely on sentiment.
Marriage and the family are the pivotal institutions in every society. They promote and reinforce moral and civil behaviour.
Haphazard marriage, with very little or no regard at all for the rights of the unborn, must be guarded against. The parents must own full responsibility for the moral training of the young.
In the words of Adlai E. Stevenson, âThere is absolutely no excuse for a parent to abdicate his most important dutyâthe proper raising of oneâs children. How can we hope to secure a just and rational society if we neglect the development of our children?â
Old case of US saying 'You're either for us or against us' to other people.
New Zealand situation:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Secret Vietnam War files released</b>
Sat, 04 Aug 2007 06:12p.m.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->It has a video. Listening to it is better, but for those that can't or those not interested in loading it, here's a transcript. My stuff in purple. What's not purple is not mine - including the bits where the news channel is making fun of the US.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Anchor: "After 30 years of sitting in storage a series of top secret files from the Vietnam War era have been released for public viewing. The documents cover the first visit to NZ by a US president: Lyndon B Johnson in 1966. Briefing notes show the American president urging the NZ govt to support the US intervention in Vietnam. Stephen Parker has been looking at the files".<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->Reporter:<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Deep in the bowels of the national archives are documents that have been kept secret for 30 yrs and only now can be seen. They are a slice of NZ history marked 'secret and for NZ eyes only'. Some giving insights into the first ever visit to NZ by an American president.
Archive news reel: "The president is challenged and welcomed in the traditional way by a Maori party specially dressed for the occasion."
President Lyndon Baines Johnson was in town and he attracted plenty of protest. It was 1966 at the height of the Vietnam war. NZ had already sent a small force, but LBJ needed as much support as he could get for a war going badly wrong.
LBJ: "All I want to do, is not only to be the possessor of freedom and liberty, butÂ I want to be (building to hysterical crescendo) the protector of it - not just for myself, but for mankind." (Applause)
<b>Yupp, he was from Texas, can't you tell.</b>
These documents reveal the blunt message the president had when he met the NZ Prime Minister Keith Holyoak and his cabinet behind closed doors. <b>It was part demand, part threat for NZ to keep supporting the war.</b>
Johnson said, "if NZ showed lack of concern as Neville Chamberlain had, the US would hardly wish to march its forces 10,000 miles to save us if we wanted to die anyhow. He had not come to seek further troop commitments in South Vietnam. It was a matter of NZ's conscience to whether or not we are doing as much as we can to protect our own freedoms - but the danger still existed of aggression spreading." (<- Video showing the archive document while audio has the reporter reading from it )
Historian: "It came as no surprise at all to Holyoak and the cabinet. Of course, Keith Holyoak was very intent on not increasing NZ's commitment too excessively. He was there to support the United States politically but he wanted to send as few NZ forces as possible."
Soon after, NZ increased its combat involvement in the war from a single artillery battery to sending infantry and SAS units. In 1968 there were 540 NZ soldiers in Vietnam. And our involvement ended in 1972.
The archives of NZ have millions of documents, not all are being made public. Government officials deemed it would take 30 years before these fascinating notes of Johnson's visit could be released.
Archivist: "Normally most things once you got 30 yrs down the track, our sensitivities tend to .... tend to have ... have waned."
<b>And doesn't it sound so familiar?</b> (Voice-over on video that includes Lyndon B Johnson's NZ speech footage side by side with Bush's war speech
<b>America in trouble with a military operation in a foreign country. And a Texan president urging other countries to support his foreign intervention. Which goes to show maybe history does repeat.</b>
Stephen Parker 3 News.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->American schools should teach their kids why US has for decades not been well-perceived or popular in other countries.
An interesting article
Negotiating with NSG- Prospects and Challenges
By Ambassador (Rtd) T.P.Sreenivasan
Negotiating with the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to seek an exception from its guidelines for India is like negotiating with Winston Churchill for the liquidation of the British Empire. The NSG was established specifically to deny India nuclear fuel and technology after its peaceful nuclear explosion in 1974. Once India becomes a partner rather than a target, there may be no more need for such a group to be in existence. The United States, which now proposes to shepherd India in its negotiations with the NSG, was, ironically the country that proposed the formation of the Group to ensure that suppliers around the globe uniformly applied a comprehensive set of guidelines so that nuclear cooperation did not contribute to proliferation. It had its eyes especially on France, at that time a key non-NPT supplier.
The growth of the NSG from its original 7 members to 15 in 1978, when its guidelines and Trigger List were published, to 45 till today was the result of the emergence of new votaries of non-proliferation and the break-up of the Soviet Union. In 1992, the revelations about Iraqâs illicit nuclear weapons programme spurred the NSG to adopt controls on nuclear-related dual-use goods that could make a contribution to explosive technology in the hands of non- nuclear weapon states. Between the original guidelines that required application of comprehensive IAEA safeguards and physical protection against unauthorized use of transferred material and the additional requirements of a strict regime for use of dual-use technology, there is a veritable fortress of rules and lists to prevent proliferation. In 2004, the members even adopted a âcatch allâ mechanism, which authorizes members to block any export suspected to be destined to a nuclear weapons programme even if the export material does not appear on one of the control lists. The fact, of course, is that determined states and individuals like A.Q.Khan have been able to penetrate the fortress without any let or hindrance.
The regime is voluntary and there is no requirement for prior clearance of exports with the group, but as in the instance of Russian supplies to India in 2001, the other members can exert pressure on individual countries, which violate the guidelines. Russia was able to supply in 2006 only with the implicit understanding of the U.S. Members are supposed to report their export denials to each other so that potential proliferators cannot approach several suppliers with the same request and get different responses. They are also expected to refrain from making exports identical or similar to those denied by other members. The guidelines do not remain static, as members tend to add new items to the prohibited list, especially of dual-use items. The annual Plenary Meetings of the NSG take important decisions by consensus.Â
An informal grouping, the Zangger Committee, with a similar mandate was already in existence ever since the NPT came into force. The Zangger Committee characterizes itself as a âfaithful interpreter of Article III paragraph 2 of the NPTâ. The Groupâs objective was to reach a common understanding on the definition of âequipment or material especially designed or prepared for the processing, use or production of special fissionable materialâ and the conditions and procedures for such exports. Though The NSG adopted the Zangger Committeeâs âTrigger Listâ and depended on it to resolve some non-proliferation issues at a time when China had not yet joined the NSG, the Zangger Committee was not considered adequate to deal with the challenges of India and Iraq, first because the Zangger Committee dealt only with NPT signatories and its decisions were not legally binding on its members. Their common mission and their co-location in Vienna have made the Zangger Committee and the NSG non-proliferation twins born out of the NPT.
My dealings with the NSG in Vienna (2000-04) were in a different time and era, when India was extremely sensitive to any signal that would bring us close to the NPT regime. The Indian Governor of the IAEA was under instructions not to attend even NSG dinners in Vienna, to which we were invited occasionally. One reason for the distance we maintained with the NSG was that the most active members of the âSouth Asia Working Groupâ that was set up to design the punitive measures against India after the nuclear tests of 1998 were NSG members. Some of them like Ukraine were thoughtlessly adamant about âpunishingâ India for its tests. Brazil and South Africa were also hardliners as they had the halo of nuclear renunciation around their heads.
The NSG, for some reason, began an outreach programme to non-NSG members in 2001. This was around the time when fissures became visible in the NSG when Russia, citing the safety exception clause of the NSG guidelines, supplied fuel for Tarapur. The state department had reacted strongly to the Russian action. âRussian disregard of its NSG commitmentsâ, said the state department, âraises serious questions about Russiaâs support for the goal of preventing nuclear proliferation.â 32 of the 34 members had opposed the Russian decision.Â A feeble effort by Russia to accord associate status to India in the NSG became a non-starter. Against this backdrop, we were invited for a meeting with a representative team of the NSG, including the United States, in Vienna. But, instead of exploring possibilities of any relaxation for the Russian supplies, the NSG team lectured us on the merits of non-proliferation and comprehensive safeguards. We declined further invitations from the NSG for dialogue in the next couple of years, much to the annoyance of the NSG leadership. The Czech Ambassador in Vienna, who chaired the group for a year, took it personally when I repeatedly declined his invitation for a dialogue. We knew that we did not miss much as Israel and Pakistan, which went to such meetings, came back disappointed that the NSG had no intention to relax its guidelines. Under pressure from NSG members, who were otherwise friendly, we suggested that we would not be averse to talks in New Delhi. Accordingly, a team of ambassadors from Vienna and some officials from NSG capitals came to New Delhi for an interaction. It was evident from these meetings that, unless there was a change in the U.S. position, such meetings would be futile. The NSG members at that time were aware of an Indian proposal to open up additional nuclear establishments for IAEA inspection in return for relaxation of the NSG guidelines, but the members, like the Americans, were not enthusiastic.
The atmosphere in the NSG changed after the Indo-U.S. Joint Statement of 2005, though an American proposal to put the nuclear deal on the agenda of the NSG Plenary Meeting in May 2006 was not accepted as the deal had not become operational. On the Russian supply of fuel to India in 2006, the state department stated: âDeals to supply that fuel should move forward on the basis of a joint initiative, on the basis of steps that India will take, but it has not yet taken.âÂ Japan and Australia were particularly firm on examining matters only after the Indo-U.S. deal became operational. In the NSG, the general trend was for countries, which have nuclear power plants and other equipment to sell to be more positive than those, which had no business to transact under any new arrangement.
The U.S. had maintained, right from 2005, that exports under the new arrangement could commence only after India had negotiated an India specific safeguards agreement and an appropriate Additional Protocol with the IAEA and it had obtained relaxation of the NSG guidelines. But these were seen as mere formalities, once the US Congress had approved a bilateral arrangement between India and the United States. Even China had not given any strong indication that it would stand in the way. With the U.S. as the âsherpaâ, it was presumed that it would be an easy climb to the NSG summit. But difficulties will present themselves as the trek begins. Members are likely to resist the liquidation of an empire that they have built over the last 34 years.
A fundamental premise of the NSG is that any country that receives supplies should accept full-scope safeguards. China initially joined the Zangger Committee and not the NSG because China was at that time in the process of supplying a reactor to Pakistan. Since the NPT does not require full scope safeguards as a condition of supply, Chinaâs membership of the Zangger Committee did not prevent them from supplying the reactor to Pakistan. By joining the NSG at that time, China would have forsaken its right to supply nuclear equipment to Pakistan. A U.S. representative to NSG revealed this when China applied for NSG membership subsequently. Since India will not accept full-scope safeguards under the deal, NSG will need to make a change in its fundamental position. The India specific safeguards, which the IAEA approves, will be subjected to an analysis to see whether it will have sufficient safeguards against diversion of nuclear material or dual use equipment. For this reason, Russia is supposed to have advised India to circulate its draft of the safeguards to the members of the NSG in advance.
The strategy of the United States in the context of the NSG will be to ask the NSG members to take note of the steps that India has taken as a âcontributing partnerâ in the non-proliferation regime. It will also ask the NSG members to transfer the trigger list items and related technologies only to the safeguarded civil nuclear facilities in India as long as India continues to meet the other requirements of the NSG. The relaxation will be sought on the ground that India has accepted IAEA safeguards in perpetuity for its civilian nuclear facilities, it has a moratorium on testing in place, it will sign an Additional Protocol with the IAEA, it has stringent export controls and it will adhere strictly to the NSG guidelines on exports. Here, interested governments will argue that India had no intention to be a contributing partner in the non-proliferation regime as the Indian position is that the nuclear deal is merely an energy agreement.
Another requirement of the NSG is that adequate verification measures should be in place to ensure that the supplies of the participating states are not diverted to weapons purposes. The bilateral agreement between India and the US envisages IAEA inspections of civilian establishments in India and a certain amount of trust is an element in the agreement.Â A multilateral group like the NSG might want other verification measures, which may prove anathema to India.
Chinaâs position will be the most crucial in the entire NSG exercise. At the first NSG meeting after the Indo-US Joint Statement, China had pressed the US for a similar deal for Pakistan. China has been lying low, but it has not made secret of its opposition to the deal. But China tends to be eminently reasonable in the international arena and, therefore, may point out that giving exceptional treatment to one country may jeopordize the non-proliferation regime. China may suggest, instead, that the NSG guidelines should be relaxed in a manner that allows export to certain countries in certain situations, which may cover the Indian exception. Though the U.S. position is that no other exception will be made, it may close its eyes to the advantage it may give to Pakistan and China to enhance their nuclear co-operation. The Chinese position may enjoy some support among the other NSG members. China will also look for some gains for itself in the light of the impression that the 123 Agreement with China is not as favourable to China as in the Indian case.
Although nuclear tests are not mentioned in the 123 Agreement, it is premised on an Indian moratorium on testing, which finds mention in the Indo-U.S Joint Statement of 2005. The debate in Parliament and elsewhere about the need for India to protect its sovereign right to test may well have created suspicion in the minds of the NSG members and they may well make a reference in the revised guidelines to the termination of the arrangements in the event of a nuclear test by India. The U.S. will naturally welcome such a provision, which, according to it, is already included in the 123 Agreement.
The extent of challenges within the NSG will depend on the degree of firmness with which the United States will defend the agreement and ensure that it is not changed to Indiaâs disadvantage. They should not attempt to secure through the NSG what they had conceded in the bilateral negotiations. But at the same time, the U.S. will not favour a situation, which will dismantle the NSG and leave it to the member states to deal with India and others in accordance with their own interests. Although an exception for India will end the rationale for the existence of the group, the US will favour continuation of the Group and will do everything possible to maintain the integrity of the NSG.
The motivation that will eventually persuade the NSG to go along with the US will be commercial, as can be seen by the accommodating attitude of France, Russia, Australia and Japan. But those who have nothing to gain by opening the Indian market will not be enthusiastic about any relaxation of the guidelines. Ireland is supposed to have asked a number of hard questions in the initial discussions. South Africa, Argentina, Japan and Germany are also expected to be hard negotiators. The negotiations in the NSG are likely to be long and arduous.
The NSG exercise is still some distance away because there are other hurdles to cross such as the IAEA Board, which has to approve the India specific safeguards system. India will have to work bilaterally with each of the 45 members, as implementation of the guidelines is an individual rather than a collective responsibility. The success we have accomplished in befriending Brazil and South Africa should help us in the NSG. In the past, they have been rather adamant about full-scope safeguards.
Just as the entry of Russia into NATO is fast becoming logical in the changed world, India joining the NSG will be a logical step. In fact, no other country has better credentials than India in terms of the objective of the NSG to prevent exports that will lead to proliferation. Even in the aftermath of our nuclear tests, authorities on export controls had certified that India had an impeccable record in export control. If the criteria for membership of the NSG alone were to be considered, without considering our NPT status, there was no reason to exclude India from the NSG. Indiaâs membership of the NSG should be the next logical step after the NSG has taken a decision to exempt India from accepting full-scope safeguards before member states export nuclear fuel and equipment to India.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Presidential Proclamation Sought to Recognize Festival of LightsÂ âDeepavaliâ</b>Hinduism Holding Roots in U.S --- AsiaÂ Tribune
Washington, D.C. 24 August :With two million Hindus in the United StatesÂ out of which 1,250,000 from India and South Asia residing in this predominantlyÂ Christian nation, despite no religion is recognized as a national religion, thisÂ largely Asian religion is recognized here as one of the major religions with theÂ United States Congress adopting resolutions requesting the President to declareÂ the Holy Hindu Festival âDeepavaliâ, or festival of lights, to give due andÂ national recognition.Â
The Senate and the House adopted resolutions recognizing the religious andÂ historical significance of the âfestivalâ requesting the President of the UnitedÂ States to issue a proclamation recognizing âDeepavaliâ which is also known asÂ âDeewaliâ.
But something significant happened in the United States on 12 July 2007:Â
History was created in the United States Senate on this day, when Rajan Zed, the Hindu chaplain of the Indian Association of Northern Nevada, opened theÂ Senate with a Hindu prayer.
This is the first such instance since the inauguration of the most influential senate in 1789.
Despite some heckling by a few in the senate gallery, the Hindu priestÂ opening the blessing preached "Let us pray. We meditate on the transcendentalÂ glory of the deity supreme, who is inside the heart of the earth, inside theÂ life of the sky and inside the soul of heaven. May he stimulate and illuminateÂ our minds.
"Lead us from the unreal to real, from darkness to light, and from death toÂ immortality. May we be protected together. May we be nourished together. May weÂ work together with great vigor. May our study be enlightening. May no obstacleÂ arise between us."
He also bemoaned the protests, saying, "I believe dialogueÂ is always better," and profusely thanked Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid,Â Nevada Democrat, who had arranged for him to deliver the first Hindu prayer inÂ the US Senate.
"The Senator was a very courageous man for standing up and giving us thisÂ opportunity. He was very courageous and I appreciate what he did very much,"heÂ
said. The Senate Majority Leader Reid said "It shows what America is all about.Â Having real big arms to put around everyone and this is a religion that has been around a long time, which has brought peace and contentment to people over theÂ generations and we are happy to have a (Hindu) prayer."
Zed said the fact that a Hindu prayer was opening the US Senate for the first time, was a clear indication that there is an acceptance of Hinduism as part ofÂ America today. "Slowly we are becoming mainstream. Yoga is very popular already,Â and through yoga in America, Hinduism is becoming more known. I teach HinduismÂ classes also in the community colleges (in Reno, Nevada) and I get a veryÂ favorable reception."
With this significant development, the Hindu American Foundation in theÂ United States in a recent press release commending both houses of the CongressÂ in adopting resolutions which recognized the religious and historic significance of the festival of Diwali and requesting the President of the United States toÂ issue a proclamation recognizing this most important worldwide festival of theÂ Hindus said: "recognizing the religious and historical significance of theÂ festival of Diwali.â. The resolution affirms the importance of the festival inÂ the lives of millions of Hindus, Jains and Sikhs in the United States.Â
Source : http://www.asiantribune.com/index.php?q=node/7112
A number of news items are of some interest in terms of the manufacture of opinion, and the clash of civilizations between the Judaeo-Christian west and Islam.
Item 1: The visit of the Iranian president to the US and the Columbia university. It is very interesting to note how the American media is in frenzy over the recent antics of Ahmedinejad. Like any other true believer in the monotheistic prophetic cult Ahmedinejad is a threat to the world. But there are very many of them all over the world so is he really that special or dangerous to merit the excitement. Let us note the following facts:
1) Iran was not involved in 9/11
2) Iran was an arch enemy of the Taleban, the hosts of Osama and his gang.
3) Iran has not carried out a terrorist strike on US soil and the last major assault on the US interests was a long time ago using Hezbollah proxies (Of course they are fomenting trouble for the Americans in Iraq now, but it is the Americans who got into a hell-hole in the first because of the being taken for a ride by the Neo-cons).
4) Iran is actually too weak to be a direct threat to the US, if the rulers of the US exhibited common sense.
Yet they are making a big noise about Ahmedinejad yapping at Columbia University or visiting New York.
In contrast, Pervez Musharraf was invited to New York and treated as a guest of honor. He was invited to talk his nonsense at the same Columbia University and also Cornell University (On September 26, 2006), another famous school in New York. He was feted by the American rulers and media as a great ally of the US.
Note the following facts now:
1) Musharraf was the primary supporter of the Taleban and gave them the infra-structure to support al-Qaeda.
2) It was through his support that al-Qaeda carried out 9/11
3) He still hides Osama, Omar and their gang and is supporting the resurgence of the Taleban in Afghanistan.
4) He has been involved in clandestine nuclear proliferation with North Korea and was a patron of Xerox Khan.
5) Most major Islamic terrorist activities conducted against the US traceback to Pakistani sources which are all orchestrated by Musharraf.
6) While Ahmedinejad is an elected leader, Musharraf is a dictator who deposed an elected leader. Not that this matters much to the rest of the world, but US paints a picture of being the beacon of democracy furthering various democratic causes the world over.
The US media largely praised Musharraf and no one protested against his visit to the universities in any serious way.
The discerning person knows why this is so, and how opinion is manufactured by the controllers of the American media contrary to the facts. But it still remains comical on one hand and tragic on the other to see the American people being fooled so thoroughly to lose their lives and tax money due the patently delusive propaganda that the Iran and Iraq posed threats to their lives. Even more annoying is that Hindus seemed to be taken on this ride too, to act contrary to their self-interests (vis-a-vis Mushy in particular).
Item 2: The recent events in Iraq have brought to fore the role of American private armies, such the mercenaries of Blackwater and the like. These armies of interest to the geopolitical observer. Some probing shows that a frequent, if not the only constituent, of these mercenary armies deployed by the US is the following kind of individual: A macho leukotestate male, fired by ideals of Hollywood gunmen-supermen on one side, and protestant Isaistic delusions on the other. In essence he is a crusader a mirror-image of the Mujahideen standing firm in the fight of the cross against the crescent. Secondly, since regular armies could always be blamed for crimes against humanity, it is useful to deploy these unaccountable warriors, especially when they are fired with Isaistic fervor. Now, the scale of these Isaistic mercenary armies is particular striking -- the one currently in the news headed by a fanatic Isaistic military-trained chieftain is supposed to have 20,000 men with their own military base and assault aircraft. No sovereign nation will allow such private armies, unless they are supported by the rulers. But the important lesson for us to learn is the potential of such Isaistic armies to cause harm to us heathens. We already know very well how the "soft arm" of the leukosphere in the form of various Isaistic activists- evangelists, priests, NGOs etc operate with impunity in India converting Hindus and subverting the nation. These soft soldiers are very likely to be backed-up by these private Isaistic armies of "contractors". I believe this is already in place with India, Nepal and Tibet being major targets and will only increase in the future as they become relatively jobless in Iraq.
Op_Ed in Deccan Chronicle, 25 Spet., 2007
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->US is losing its Pacific
By Robert D. Kaplan
The ultimate strategic effect of the Iraq war has been to hasten the arrival of the Asian Century.
While the American government has been occupied in Mesopotamia, and its European allies continue to starve their defence programmes, Asian militaries â in particular those of China, India, Japan and South Korea â have been quietly modernising and in some cases enlarging. Asian dynamism is now military as well as economic.
The military trend that is hiding in plain sight is the loss of the Pacific Ocean as an American lake after 60 years of near-total dominance. A few years down the road, according to the security analysts at the private policy group Strategic Forecasting, Americans will not to the same extent be the prime deliverers of disaster relief in a place like the Indonesian archipelago, as we were in 2005. Our ships will share the waters (and the prestige) with new "big decks" from Australia, Japan and South Korea.
Then there is China, whose production and acquisition of submarines is now five times that of Americaâs. Many military analysts feel it is mounting a quantitative advantage in naval technology that could erode our qualitative one. Yet the Chinese have been buying smart rather than across the board.
In addition to submarines, Beijing has focused on naval mines, ballistic missiles that can hit moving objects at sea and technology that blocks GPS satellites. The goal is "sea denial": dissuading American carrier strike groups from closing in on the Asian mainland wherever and whenever we like. Such dissuasion is the subtle, high-tech end of military asymmetry, as opposed to the crude, low-tech end that weâve seen with homemade bombs in Iraq. Whether or not China ever has a motive to challenge America, it will increasingly have the capacity to do so. Certainly, the billions of dollars spent on Iraq (a war I supported) would not have gone for the expensive new air, naval and space systems necessary to retain our relative edge against a future peer competitor like China. But some of it would have.
Chinaâs military expansion, with a defence budget growing by double digits for the 19th consecutive year, is part of a broader, regional trend. Russia â a Pacific as well as a European nation, we should remember â is right behind the United States and China as the worldâs biggest military spender. Japan, with 119 warships, including 20 diesel-electric submarines, boasts a naval force nearly three times larger than Britainâs. (It is soon to be four times larger: 13 to 19 of Britainâs 44 remaining large ships are set to be mothballed by the Labour government.) Indiaâs Navy could be the third-largest in the world in a few years as it becomes more active throughout the Indian Ocean, from the Mozambique Channel to the Strait of Malacca between Indonesia and Malaysia. South Korea, Singapore and Pakistan all spend higher percentages of their gross domestic products on defence than do Britain and France â which are by far Europeâs most serious military-minded nations.
The twin trends of a rising Asia and a politically crumbling West Asia will most likely lead to a naval emphasis on the Indian Ocean and its surrounding seas, the sites of the "brown water" choke points of world commerce â the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf, the Bab el Mandeb at the mouth of the Red Sea, and Malacca. These narrow bodies of water will become increasingly susceptible to terrorism, even as they become more and more clogged with tankers bringing West Asian oil to the growing middle classes of India and China. The surrounding seas will then become home territory to Indian and Chinese warships, protecting their own tanker routes.
To wit, China is giving Pakistan $200 million to build a deep-water port at Gwadar, just 390 nautical miles from the Strait of Hormuz.
Beijing is also trying to work with the military junta in Burma to create another deep-water port on the Bay of Bengal. It has even hinted at financing a canal across the 30-mile Isthmus of Kra in Thailand that would open a new connection between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. Oddly enough, the Pacific, as an organising principle in world military affairs, will also encroach upon Africa. Itâs no secret that a major reason for the Pentagonâs decision to establish its new Africa Command is to contain and keep an eye on Chinaâs growing web of development projects across the sub-Saharan regions.
Still, measuring budgets, deployments, and sea and air "platforms" does not quite indicate just how much the ground is shifting beneath our feet. Military power rests substantially on the willingness to use it: perhaps less so in war than in peacetime as a means of leverage and coercion.
That, in turn, requires a vigorous nationalism â something that is far more noticeable right now in Asia than in parts of an increasingly post-national West. As the Yale political scientist Paul Bracken notes in his book Fire in the East: The Rise of Asian Military Power and the Second Nuclear Age, the Indians, Pakistanis and Chinese have great pride in possessing nuclear weapons, unlike the western powers that seem almost ashamed of needing them. Likewise, the right to produce nuclear arms is something that unites Iranians, regardless of their views of the clerical regime.
Mending relations with Europe is only a partial answer to Americaâs problems in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, since Europe itself continues to turn away from military power. This trend was quickened by the Iraq war, which has helped legitimise nascent European pacifism. People in countries like Germany, Italy and Spain see their own militaries not so much as soldiers but as civil servants in uniform: there for soft peacekeeping and humanitarian missions.
Meanwhile, Asia is marked by rivalries that encourage traditional arms races. Despite warming economic ties between Japan and China, and between Japan and South Korea, the Japanese and Chinese have fought wars of words over possession of the Senkaku (or, as the Chinese have it, Diaoyutai) Islands in the East China Sea; just as Japanese and South Koreans have over possession of the Takeshima Islands (Tokdo Islands to the Koreans) in the Sea of Japan. These are classic territorial disputes, stirring deep emotions of the sorts that often led to war in early modern Europe.
Despite these tensions, the United States should also be concerned about the alternative possibility of a China-Japan entente. Some of Chinaâs recent diplomatic approaches to Japan have been couched in a new tone of respect and camaraderie, as it attempts to tame Japanâs push toward rearmament and thus to reduce the regional influence of the United States.
Asiaâs military-economic vigour is the product of united political, economic and military elites. In Asia, politics often does stop at the waterâs edge. In a post-Bush America, if we do not find a way to agree on basic precepts, Iraq may indeed turn out to have been the event that signalled our military decline. Preventing that will require continued high military expenditures combined with an unrelenting multilateralism of a sort we have not pursued since the Nineties. In the vast oceanic spaces bordering the Pacific and Indian Oceans, air, sea and space power will be paramount both as means of deterrence and of guarding the sea lanes. A global power at peace still requires a navy and an air force deployed as far forward as possible. That costs money. Even with the gargantuan cost of Iraq, our defence budget is still under five per cent of our gross domestic product, low by historical standards.
Furthermore, the very vitality of nation-states in the Pacific and Indian Oceans will take us back to an older world of traditional statecraft, in which we will need to tirelessly leverage allies and seek cooperation from competitors. Thus we should take advantage of the rising risk of terrorism and piracy in order to draw the Chinese and Indian Navies into joint patrols of choke points and tanker routes.
Still, we should be careful about leveraging Japan and India too overtly against China.
The Japanese continue to be distrusted throughout Asia, particularly in the Korean Peninsula, because of the horrors of World War II. As for India, as a number of policy experts leaders there told me on a recent visit: India will remain nonaligned, with a tilt toward the United States. But any official alliance would compromise Indiaâs own shaky relationship with China. Subtlety must be a keystone to our policy. We have to draw China in, not gang up against it. Because we remain the only major player in the Pacific and Indian Oceans without territorial ambitions or disputes with its neighbours, indispensability, rather than dominance, must be our goal.
That, continuing deep into the 21st century, would be a stirring achievement.
Robert D. Kaplan is the author of Hog Pilots, Blue Water Grunts:
The American Military in the Air, at Sea and on the Ground
<!--QuoteBegin-Hauma Hamiddha+Sep 23 2007, 12:12 PM-->QUOTE(Hauma Hamiddha @ Sep 23 2007, 12:12 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->The visit of the Iranian president to the US and the Columbia university. It is very interesting to note how the American media is in frenzy over the recent antics of Ahmedinejad. [right][snapback]73462[/snapback][/right]
HH: These neo-cons have conned the nation on Iraq and are now trying to do the same on Iran.
More on the Columbia fiasco.
Iranian University Chancellors Ask Bollinger 10 Questions
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->TEHRAN (Fars News Agency)- Seven chancellors and presidents of Iranian
universities and research centers, in a letter addressed to their
counterpart in the US, Colombia University, denounced Lee Bollinger's
insulting words against the Iranian nation and president and invited him
to provide responses to 10 questions by Iranian academics and
The following is the full text of the letter:
Mr. Lee Bollinger, Columbia University President
We, the professors and heads of universities and research institutions in
Tehran, hereby announce our displeasure and protest at your impolite
remarks prior to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's recent speech at
We would like to inform you that President Ahmadinejad was elected
directly by the Iranian people through an enthusiastic two-round poll in
which almost all of the country's political parties and groups
participated. To assess the quality and nature of these elections you may
refer to US news reports on the poll dated June 2005.
Your insult, in a scholarly atmosphere, to the president of a country with
a population of 72 million and a recorded history of 7,000 years of
civilization and culture is deeply shameful.
Your comments, filled with hate and disgust, may well have been influenced
by extreme pressure from the media, but it is regrettable that media
policy-makers can determine the stance a university president adopts in
Your remarks about our country included unsubstantiated accusations that
were the product of guesswork as well as media propaganda. Some of your
claims result from misunderstandings that can be clarified through
dialogue and further research.
During his speech, Mr. Ahmadinejad answered a number of your questions and
those of students. We are prepared to answer any remaining questions in a
scientific, open and direct debate.
You asked the president approximately ten questions. Allow us to ask you
ten of our own questions in the hope that your response will help clear
the atmosphere of misunderstanding and distrust between our two countries
and reveal the truth.
1- Why did the US media put you under so much pressure to prevent Mr.
Ahmadinejad from delivering his speech at Columbia University? And why
have American TV networks been broadcasting hours of news reports
insulting our president while refusing to allow him the opportunity to
respond? Is this not against the principle of freedom of speech?
2- Why, in 1953, did the US administration overthrow Iran's national
government under Dr Mohammad Mosaddegh and go on to support the Shah's
3- Why did the US support the blood-thirsty dictator Saddam Hussein during
the 1980-88 Iraqi-imposed war on Iran, considering his reckless use of
chemical weapons against Iranian soldiers defending their land and even
against his own people?
4- Why is the US putting pressure on the government elected by the
majority of Palestinians in Gaza instead of officially recognizing it? And
why does it oppose Iran's proposal to resolve the 60-year-old Palestinian
issue through a general referendum?
5- Why has the US military failed to find Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden
even with all its advanced equipment? How do you justify the old
friendship between the Bush and Bin Laden families and their cooperation
on oil deals? How can you justify the Bush administration's efforts to
disrupt investigations concerning the September 11 attacks?
6- Why does the US administration support the Mujahedin Khalq Organization
(MKO) despite the fact that the group has officially and openly accepted
the responsibility for numerous deadly bombings and massacres in Iran and
Iraq? Why does the US refuse to allow Iran's current government to act
against the MKO's main base in Iraq?
7- Was the US invasion of Iraq based on international consensus and did
international institutions support it? What was the real purpose behind
the invasion which has claimed hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives? Where
are the weapons of mass destruction that the US claimed were being
stockpiled in Iraq?
8- Why do America's closest allies in the Middle East come from extremely
undemocratic governments with absolutist monarchical regimes?
9- Why did the US oppose the plan for a Middle East free of unconventional
weapons in the recent session of the International Atomic Energy Agency
Board of Governors despite the fact the move won the support of all
members other than Israel?
10- Why is the US displeased with Iran's agreement with the IAEA and why
does it openly oppose any progress in talks between Iran and the agency to
resolve the nuclear issue under international law?
Finally, we would like to express our readiness to invite you and other
scientific delegations to our country. A trip to Iran would allow you and
your colleagues to speak directly with Iranians from all walks of life
including intellectuals and university scholars. You could then assess the
realities of Iranian society without media censorship before making
judgments about the Iranian nation and government.
You can be assured that Iranians are very polite and hospitable toward