Behind Enemy Lines
28 May 2005
Indonesian "Justice"
Compare and Contrast:

Schapelle Corby: Australian citizen arrested in Bali. Accused and convicted of smuggling nine pounds of marijuana into Indonesia.
Sentence: 20 years.
Prosecution is appealing, as they want a life sentence (it is also a death sentence capable crime)

Abu Bakhir: Militant Indonesian Islamic cleric, accused and convicted of criminal conspiracy that lead to the deaths of over two hundred people in Bali terrorist attacks. Suspected in attack onMarriot hotel attack that killed twelve. Acknowledged leader of Jemah Islamah, a terrorist group.

Sentence: 30 months

Update: By the way, there is a good chance that Schapelle Corby is innocent of the crime. There apparently was a rather large drug smuggling ring operating out of Sydney airport that was using travelers baggage to smuggle drugs.
22 May 2005
Do a search on MSN for "Moonbats"
21 May 2005
What makes the ICRC exempt from suspicion?
Sorry if this sounds all crazy paranoid (what the the heck, can't let the moonbats have all the fun) but I was reading an article about the photo's of Saddam Hussein that have recently surfaced in "The Sun" and "The New York Post" and was struck by this line:

"Aside from U.S. soldiers, the only others with access to Saddam are his legal
team, prosecuting judge Raed Johyee and the International Committee for the Red
Cross, which monitors his treatment for compliance with the Geneva Conventions"

Why are U.S. soldiers or personnel the immediate suspects in this case? With what the ICRC has been revealing lately about their supposedly "confidential" reports that they made to the U.S. government, it seems to me that the ICRC is trying to embarass the U.S.

From an article on the ICRC website about ICRC "neutrality" titled "Recognition of the ICRC's long-standing rule of confidentiality - An important decision by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia"

"The ICRC makes public statements about violations of international humanitarian law only when it is confident that to do so will not prejudice its ability to discharge its mandate. Such statements are of a very general character, avoiding any allegations against named individuals. The violations must be major and repeated and must have been directly witnessed. Even then, public statements are made only if steps taken confidentially have not succeeded in putting an end to the violations, and such publicity is in the interests of those affected or threatened. The ICRC uses public statements, therefore, as a means to put a stop to an ongoing violation of humanitarian law, not in connection with the punishment of violations."

[emphasis added]

Interesting. How does that conflict with Simon Schorno of the ICRC making statements such as: [from a Reuters report]
The International Committee of the Red Cross told the Pentagon "multiple" times in 2002 and early 2003 prisoners at the base in Cuba alleged U.S. officials showed "disrespect" for the Muslim holy book, said Simon Schorno, an ICRC spokesman. "The U.S. government took corrective measures and those allegations have not resurfaced," Schorno said.
The ICRC spokesman declined to specify if the complaints included the flushing of the Koran down the toilet or if U.S. officials used the disrespect as part of interrogations. Members of the humanitarian organization, which is given access to the prison, did not witness any mishandling of the Koran.
[emphasis added]

Me thinks something is rotten in Geneva.

Personally in regards to the whole brouhaha about Saddam in his tighty whities I agree with Hawre Saliee also quoted in the original MSNBC article:

“Saddam Hussein and his regime were bloody and practiced mass killing against the people, therefore, whatever happens to Saddam, whether he is photographed naked or washing his clothes, it means nothing to me. That’s the least he deserves,”
20 May 2005
Image of humility and heroism
With all the vileness that is spouted about American and coalition forces let's reflect for a moment on the following:

This is Major Mark Bieger, he is holding a young Iraqi victim of a so-called "Martyrdom" operation (as the "insurgents" [read: "terrorist bastards"] call it)

As Michael Yon wrote when he posted the photo he took

Major Mark Bieger found this little girl after the car bomb that attacked our guys while kids were crowding around. The soldiers here have been angry and sad for two days. They are angry because the terrorists could just as easily have waited a block or two and attacked the patrol away from the kids. Instead, the suicide bomber drove his car and hit the Stryker when about twenty children were jumping up and down and waving at the soldiers. Major Bieger, I had seen him help rescue some of our guys a week earlier during another big attack, took some of our soldiers and rushed this little girl to our hospital. He wanted her to have American surgeons and not to go to the Iraqi hospital. She didn't make it.
I snapped this picture when Major Bieger ran to take her away. He kept stopping to talk with her and hug her.The soldiers went back to that neighborhood the next day to ask what they could do. The people were very warming and welcomed us into their homes, and many kids were actually running up to say hello and to ask soldiers to shake hands. Eventually, some insurgents must have realized we were back and started shooting at us. The American soldiers and Iraqi police started engaging the enemy and there was a running gun battle. I saw at least one IP who was shot, but he looked okay and actually smiled at me despite the big bullet hole in his leg. I smiled back. One thing seems certain; the people in that neighborhood share our feelings about the terrorists. We are going to go back there, and if any terrorists come out, the soldiers hope to find them. Everybody is still very angry that the insurgents attacked us when the kids were around.
Their day will come.

Why doesn't the "Main stream media" report more on stories like this? A search on today for "Major Mark Bieger " with no date restrictions shows a link to a total of five news sites. That's right. FIVE. Searching for "Michael Yon" (the photographer) still with no date restrictions brings up another thirty. Searching for "Shiite protest Iraq" published just today brings up four hundred and eighty five listings. Why doesn't the "main stream media" tell us of the successes in Iraq instead of emphasing the struggles?

"If it bleeds, it leads" is a tired and hackneyed phrase used to describe the media's obsession with violence, and the mistaken belief amongst editors and publishers that only sensationalism and pain sell news. I think a better phrase for our modern "free press" though is "If it makes the U.S. look bad in Iraq, push it like a peddler selling crack"
19 May 2005
Uh oh, they're on to us

"I am thinking, well, America has finally got to us,"

Russian Lake Disappears, residents blame America

08 May 2005
Action Alert: Save The Hornet!
The U.S.S. Hornet (CVS-12) is in need of your help. According to local news stations the Hornet, now a museum, is in danger of having her electricity cut off due to unpaid bills. In addition, the museum currently has over $500,000 in past due rent that, if left unpaid, could result in her eviction from the decommissioned Alameda Naval Air Station.

The name Hornet has graced some of the greatest ships in American history. Hornet was the name given to one of the first ships in the Continental Navy. The second Hornet landed the Marines at Tripoli. The seventh Hornet (CV-8) , the ship from which Col. Doolittle's daring raid on Tokyo was launched, went on to fight distinguishedly at Midway and fought proudly to her end at Guadalcanal. The legacy of the name lived on in the eighth Hornet CV-12. Commissioned sixteen months after her keel was laid, she would carry on the fight of her fallen namesake for sixteen continuous months in the forward areas of the Pacific Theatre. She continued to serve proudly during the conflicts in both Korea and Viet-Nam. In addition (as if all that she had done before wasn't enough) she served as the recovery carrier for the Apollo 11 and 12 missions. In fact, Neil Armstrong's first steps back on earth are still inscribed in her deck.

Take a moment and do something to save the Hornet! Donate, spread the word. Don't let a great ship down. She wouldn't let YOU down!

I've been meaning to post this update for about a week, but I've been exceedingly busy. According to news reports the folks over at the Hornet have been able to bring their electric bill into a semblence of paid (they came up with $3300 of the $9700 they needed) and were able to keep the lights on. But they still have some $500,000 due in back rent and are in danger of being asked to move (which I find really disturbing seeing as how Alameda owes its history and possibly even its very existence to the Navy and its legacy ships like the Hornet.) So if you haven't made a donation yet, you can still help the Hornet.
04 May 2005
The BBC: Poor fact checking or outright lies?
I took a moment today to scan the BBC's online news and came across the headline "Brazil turns down US Aids funds" (sic) and I decided to read it. Lo' and behold I find a story that contains the following:
Washington says it is important not to promote prostitution, and does not want any of its funds to be spent on treating prostitutes.
[emphasis added]

Much of the spending is being channelled to programmes that advocate abstinence,
rather than condom use, and cannot be used for abortions or to treat prostitutes.
[emphasis added]

Now, being a concientious news reader, I thought to myself "That can't be right can it? The United States is denying grant money for AIDS to treat prostitutes?" I checked other news sources for the same story and found results at CNN, ABC, and even The Guardian. Oddly none of them had any mention of a restriction in the use of money to treat prostitutes. (They also (not a one) didn't include something else in the BBC article that we'll get to a little later)Then I went out and did my own research. Bopping over the USAID website I did a simple search on the word "Prostitution" and there, as the first result was a link to a document titled "AAPD 04-04 Implementation of the United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tubercu-losis and Malaria Act of 2003 – Eligibility for Assistance, Limitation on the Use of Funds and Opposition to Prostitution and Sex Trafficking"

Seemed easy enough to find. Could it be this document might tell me what the true position of USAID and the United States government was on this issue? Opening the .pdf file and scanning through it I very quickly found the following (it's only four pages long after all)

II. Limitation on the Use of Funds The following must be included in the Standard Provisions in any grant to a public international organization, any grant or cooperative agreement to a U.S. or non-U.S. non-governmental organization, and any contract that includes FY04 HIV/AIDS funds.
In addition, it is to be included when any existing assistance agreement or contract is amended to add FY04 HIV/AIDS funding.
None of the funds made available under this agreement may be used to promote or advocate the legalization or practice of prostitution or trafficking. Nothing in the preceding sentence shall be construed to preclude the provision to individuals of palliative care, treatment, or post-exposure pharmaceutical prophylaxis, and necessary pharmaceuticals and commodities, including test kits, condoms, and, when proven effective, microbicides.[emphasis added]

That seems pretty explicit wouldn't you say? Unless my reading skills fail me, that seems to say that monies SHALL be spent on treating prostitutes but monies SHALL NOT be spent promoting or advocating for the legalization or practice of prostitution or sex trafficing

Hmm, did the BBC just not check their facts or are they out and out distorting the truth?

Oh, remember the other little thing that CNN, ABC, The Guardian et al didn't report? It was the following from Mr. Paul Chequer Brazil's "top Aids official":

Mr Chequer also called for official recognition of prostitution as a profession in Brazil.
Sex workers should have the right to collect state welfare payments like other workers, he said.
"That clause shows disrespect for sex workers. We advocate the legalisation of the profession, with the right to collect INSS [social security] and a pension," said Mr Chequer.

So, why do you think Mr. Chequer really turned down the money?
A Republican in San Francisco (Yes, he's under deep cover) relays his tales of interest... ...ok, "interest" is a strong and subjective word but you get the point.
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Location: San Francisco, California, United States

I shall know but one country. The ends I aim at shall be my country's, my God's and Truth's. I was born an American; I live an American; and I shall die an American. -Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

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