If you would like to add a comment to any of the threads here on AADB, registration with blogspot.com is not required. Simply click on the ‘comments’ link at the bottom of an essay, and either enter a nickname under ‘choose an identity’ or post your comment anonymously. Serious comments are always welcome.

REQUIEM

Below are the two final essays to be posted on Allegiance and Duty Betrayed. The first one is written by a friend -- screen name 'Euro-American Scum' -- who, over the past four years, has been the most faithful essayist here. He has written about everything from his pilgrimage to Normandy in 2004 to take part in the 60th–year commemoration of the invasion, to his memories of his tour in Vietnam. His dedication to America’s founding principles ... and those who have sacrificed to preserve them over the past 200+ years ... is unequaled. Thank you, E-A-S. It has been a privilege to include your writing here, and it is a privilege to call you my friend.

The second essay is my own farewell. And with it I thank all of the many regular visitors, and those who may have only dropped in occasionally, for coming here. I hope you learned something. I hope a seed or two was planted. But, even if not, I thank you for stopping by ... 25 March, 2010

12/29/2006

A Terrible Tipping Point


[I don't often post entire columns from another source here, but came across this column today, attempted to excerpt it with my own analysis, and was unable to do so. As usual, Mark Steyn takes what is common knowledge (to those of us who seek news beyond that including celebrities and sports figures) and weaves that knowledge into a futuristic image that we all need to step back and examine from several perspectives. We ignore his creations at our peril.]

~ ~ ~

Whatever the “realists” may say, nations talk to each other all the time. Unfortunately, when nation A opens its mouth, nation B doesn’t always get the message, no matter how loud and clear it is. Syria and Iran, for example, have subverted post-Saddam Iraq for three years now. Rather quietly at first. But, like a kid playing gangsta rap in his bedroom, if there are no complaints, you might as well crank up the volume. So Iran began openly threatening genocide against a neighboring state. And Syria had one of its opponents in Lebanon, Pierre Gemayel, assassinated.

Syria and Iran are talking, but are we listening?

Likewise, Russia. These days, we talk to the Bear incessantly, to the point of holding the G8 photo-op on Vladimir Putin’s turf. The old KGB man’s pals are also back in the assassination game, not just in his backyard but in London, too. As do Syria and Iran, Russia spoke loud and clear: Alexander Litvinenko, a political opponent, was poisoned by the rarest of substances and left to die a lingering death across the pages of Fleet Street’s newspapers in a very brazen and public way. Certainly as public as, say, Her Majesty The Queen making a visit to the Hermitage accompanied by President Putin and giving a speech on the renewed warmth of Anglo-Russian friendship. The British authorities, nominally charged with “solving” the murder of Mr Litvinenko (who was, after all, a British subject), wish the whole business would just go away, so they could get back to holding talks and signing joint communiqués with Mr Putin.

The question is: Which is the real snapshot of Russo-western relations? The affable buddy-buddy kibitzing between Bush and Putin at the ranch in Crawford? One President looking deep into the eyes of the other and getting “a sense of his soul” (if you’ll forgive a touch of geopolitical homoeroticism)? Or the liquidation of Moscow’s enemies on foreign soil?

And, even when we don’t get the message, plenty of third parties do. If you were a run-of-the-mill Third World basket-case what would you conclude watching the “international community” warn North Korea that there will be stern consequences if it conducts a nuclear test and, okay, even sterner super-duper-mega-consequences if it conducts a second nuclear test? If you were, say, the President of Sudan, to whom Iran has already offered its technology, you might reasonably posit that you too could go nuclear with impunity. So might Hugo Chavez in Venezuela. As for that brave band of foreign leaders who have been happy to identify themselves as American allies – the Kurds in northern Iraq, for example – that’s not looking such a desirable club to belong to. As the great Bernard Lewis said of the Baker-Scowcroft betrayal of Iraqi rebels in the first Gulf War, the lesson was plain: America is harmless as an enemy and treacherous as a friend.

The danger in the years ahead is a kind of malign convergence. In Mexico during stops on the National Review cruise the other day, I wandered through the teeming streets and found myself thinking that if I were the jihad strategists I’d spend some serious Saudi-Iranian walking-around money in these cities and try to convert to Islam, oh, let’s say just a modest 3-5% of Mexico’s population. That would be more than enough to add a whole new wrinkle to the “undocumented” problem.

Speaking softly – as in State Department-softly – is fine if you’re carrying the big stick. But, when your big stick is a snapped-off twig, it makes less sense. In a way, you’ve already spoken volumes. There are differences within the “Talks Now!” faction, from outright defeatists to those who figure a weak hand is better played round the poker table than in a fist fight. But for the most part “realism” is a euphemism for inertia. And too many “realists” have already accepted a nuclear North Korea, a nuclear Iran, a resurgent neo-totalitarian Russia, a reSyrianized Lebanon, a perceived American defeat in Iraq. The talks would be merely the signing ceremony.

In Britain in the Eighties, Margaret Thatcher faced a very particular problem. No matter how she and her colleagues transformed the country’s economic fortunes, too many of the citizenry were unable to rouse themselves from post-war fatalism: they had come to believe in the irreversibility of British decline to the point that, even when the decline had been reversed, they were still mired in it. Britain, you’d hear, could never make a go of it in the world; it had no choice but to throw its lot in with a European ersatz-federation profoundly incompatible with British values. One hears it still.

In America today, we face the opposite problem. After 9/11, the President told the world: You’re either with us or against us. Most of the world flipped him the bird: Some “allies”, such as the Belgians and New Zealanders, said, “Actually, we’re neither with you nor against you.” Other “allies”, such as the Saudis and Pakistanis, said, “Actually, we’re both with you and against you. What you gonna do about it?” And, when it became obvious that there was no price to be paid for obstructing American aims, the world got the message.

Yet at home too many Americans are wedded to an absurd proposition: that somehow the lone “superpower” can choose to lose yet another war and there will be no consequences, except for Bush and sundry discredited “neocons”; that no matter how America stumbles in the world it can stay rich and happy and technologically advanced even as it becomes a laughingstock in Tehran and Damascus and Pyongyang and Caracas and Moscow and on, and on, and on.

Not so. We are on the brink of a terrible tipping point.

[Mark Steyn, National Review, December 11th 2006]

109 comments:

Montypython2 said...

"After 9/11, the President told the world: You’re either with us or against us. Most of the world flipped him the bird: Some “allies”, such as the Belgians and New Zealanders, said, “Actually, we’re neither with you nor against you.” Other “allies”, such as the Saudis and Pakistanis, said, “Actually, we’re both with you and against you. What you gonna do about it?” And, when it became obvious that there was no price to be paid for obstructing American aims, the world got the message."

No one has said it better.

This column should be required reading for every American--at least those of us who can still read.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately all true, but these days the truth hurts.

stonemason said...

Yet at home too many Americans are wedded to an absurd proposition: that somehow the lone “superpower” can choose to lose yet another war and there will be no consequences, except for Bush and sundry discredited “neocons”; that no matter how America stumbles in the world it can stay rich and happy and technologically advanced even as it becomes a laughingstock in Tehran and Damascus and Pyongyang and Caracas and Moscow and on, and on, and on.

Well said!

d_o'connor said...

Mark Steyn, Victor Davis Hanson, and Charles Krauthammer could all run for President and get my vote. None of the politicians who have already announced will.

John Cooper said...

When my daughter got her teaching certificate a few years back, I asked her what she thought was the purpose of children going to school.

That "Why am I here?" question had bothered me all through my school years, so I thought maybe I could point her in the right direction by passsing on what I finally figured out.

The answer I arrived at in my old age was: "To preserve civilization".

I asked her to imagine that she and her family had been transported back to a pre-historic time and left there to fend for herself. How would she survive?

She would have to remember how to grow food and raise animals for food. She would have to remember what she learned about the human body and disease. She would have to build her own shelter from the elements and make the all tools she needed, of course. But most of all, she would have to find a way to protect herself and her property from her neighbors who would take them for themslves..

My daughter had never heard anything like this, of course, because subjects like the not-too-distant human condition aren't much discussed these days.

While going on with our comfortable everyday lives where food comes from supermarkets and electricity comes from walls, most Americans don't realize that human progress is not automatic. They simply can't imagine how fragile is this "thing" that we call civilization and how close we are to going back to a time when, as Hobbes wrote:

~~~~~~~~~~
"...every man is enemy to every man...wherein men live without other security than what their own strength and their own invention shall furnish them withal. In such condition there is no place for industry, because the fruit thereof is uncertain: and consequently no culture of the earth; no navigation, nor use of the commodities that may be imported by sea; no commodious building; no instruments of moving and removing such things as require much force; no knowledge of the face of the earth; no account of time; no arts; no letters; no society; and which is worst of all, continual fear, and danger of violent death; and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short"
~~~~~~~~~~

The Visigoths are at the gate my friends, and like the ancient Romans, most Americans party on with no idea of the approaching danger on what protects them from the Dark Ages.

~~~~~~~~~~
"My voice sticks in my throat; and, as I dictate, sobs choke my utterance. The City which had taken the whole world was itself taken."

--Jerome, Letter CXXVII (To Principia) on the sacking of Rome in AD 410

Arlene Albrecht said...

The part about Iran, Syria and Russia makes me sick when I think that the American media is too busy covering stories about Rosie O'Donnell and Donald Trump to say really anything about those three countries and the trouble they will cause us.

SharonGold said...

John Cooper, it sounds like you should have been a teacher yourself. If you aren't, you're in the wrong profession. :>)

robmaroni said...

The question is: Which is the real snapshot of Russo-western relations? The affable buddy-buddy kibitzing between Bush and Putin at the ranch in Crawford? One President looking deep into the eyes of the other and getting “a sense of his soul” (if you’ll forgive a touch of geopolitical homoeroticism)? Or the liquidation of Moscow’s enemies on foreign soil?

If you expand that question of "Who is the real Russia" to all other enemy nations, and people in our own government, you'd be surprised how many real enemies we have and how big of a threat we have facing us from more people and countries than we realize.

daveburkett said...

O'Connor,

Mark Steyn, Victor Davis Hanson, and Charles Krauthammer could all run for President and get my vote. None of the politicians who have already announced will.

I agree, and I'd also add Michelle Malkin to the list to add a litle beauty to the White House. {G}

Good post, Joanie.

daveburkett said...

That was a great post, John Cooper. I agree with every word--yours, Hobbes' and Jerome's.

Anonymous said...

Liventenko was an aggressive advocate for the Chechen muslims, the most murderous of all the muslims.

Litvinenko CONVERTED TO ISLAM ON HIS DEATHBED.

Someone should fill in Steyn on this.

It is likely Litvinenko caused his own death carrying radioactive materials for his beloved muslims.

Steyn's baldly asserting as a fact that Russia killed Litvinenko is not impressive:

Russia spoke loud and clear: Alexander Litvinenko, a political opponent, was poisoned by the rarest of substances and left to die a lingering death across the pages of Fleet Street’s newspapers in a very brazen and public way.

cw-patriot said...

Anonymous,

You make a very valid and significant point, which I considered when posting this last night (I actually considered editing out the reference to Liventenko, for the very reasons you cite, and others as well, and then decided against it).

Am on my way out the door at the moment, but will post here tonight in response to your excellent comment.

~ joanie

Anonymous said...

...also, someone should correct Steyn on his "rarest of substances" assertion. Contrary to the ubiquitous and mis-informed news reports, Polonium is naturally-occurring in at least three regions of the world, and can be purchased openly at a number of places on the Internet.

John Cooper said...

anonymous wrote: It is likely Litvinenko caused his own death carrying radioactive materials for his beloved muslims.

Being an alpha-emitter, Polonium is harmless unless it's inhaled or injested. You could carry enough to theoretically kill hundreds of millions of people in a sealed paper envelope and it would do you no harm.

How, exactly, do you propose that Litvinenko caused his own death by carrying it?

Anonymous said...

You could carry enough to theoretically kill hundreds of millions of people in a sealed paper envelope and it would do you no harm.

I hope you never test out that theory, John.

If you Do, be sure to "seal" the envelope VERY WELL.

Sandra said...

"As the great Bernard Lewis said "

(from Steyn's article)

Steyn should do more work on his own.

Bernard Lewis is an academic working in the area of Islam who is best known for saying the genocide of the Armenians by the Turkks never happened.

There is NOTHING "great" about Bernard Lewis, who is/was almost certainly on the take from the Turks.

Al said...

Everybody,

These "columnists" have to hack out 2-3 columns a week.

They do their chore, just like someone else digs a ditch or drives a bus. Only they get paid more and work fewer hours---and get their name before the public.

Steyn probably hacked this column out and then tried to think of what other topics he couuld come up with this week---next week--etc

cw-patriot said...

Anonymous,

When posting this article last night, I considered leaving the following statement, only, out of the entire column:

Alexander Litvinenko, a political opponent, was poisoned by the rarest of substances and left to die a lingering death across the pages of Fleet Street’s newspapers in a very brazen and public way.

At the same time, I wanted to retain Steyn’s reference to Litvinenko’s death, simply because I wanted to keep this observation in:

The British authorities, nominally charged with ‘solving’ the murder of Mr Litvinenko (who was, after all, a British subject), wish the whole business would just go away, so they could get back to holding talks and signing joint communiques with Mr. Putin.

I believe that concern is a valid one, but not for the reasons Steyn, and most others, do. The British authorities need to investigate this death, not necessarily to uncover some high-level Russian plot to kill Litvinenko in such a torturous manner, but in order to discover what he was involved with prior to his death. The results of such an investigation could have far-reaching consequences that far outweigh the significance of Litvinenko’s demise.

By omitting the one paragraph, and retaining the other, I felt that I was altering Steyn's own message, so chose not to do so. It would have been unfair to the author.

Yet I believe your qualification is a good one.

It troubles me that a KGB defector who appears to have close ties with Muslim extremists has died such a mysterious death. The British authorities need to investigate much more than the means of his death. They need to investigate his ties to Muslim extremist groups, and any part he may have been playing in a planned future terrorist attack on British soil.

As regards the speculation that Litvinenko may have been transporting, or somehow working with, polonium, and became ‘infected’ ... the odds of that happening are astronomical.

Both John Cooper and I have worked personally in the nuclear-related field, and I would not question his statements of fact regarding anything nuclear related. I left the industry in the seventies, but have kept up with later developments, to a degree.

Alpha particles emitted by polonium will damage human tissue if polonium is ingested, inhaled, or absorbed through an unnatural opening in the skin (an infection, wound, etc.) It is not absorbed by the skin itself. So, unless Litvinenko were carrying it inside his body (absurd), the theory that he was transporting it is ludicrous.

American scientists and nuclear engineers have worked with lead-bismuth coolant (used in prototype ground, and submarine, reactors) for many years. So we have a great deal of experience in studying polonium radiation, especially inside sealed coolant loops. Following any ‘accident’ in the testing (spills, especially), routine medical examinations of the workers involved have never shown any cases of radiation sickness as a result of polonium radiation (simply because they did not ingest or inhale it).

On the other hand, if polonium were ingested, inhaled, or absorbed through an opening in the skin, as little as 3 millicuries of polonium-210 (smaller than a grain of salt, size-wise), would probably prove fatal to the average person.

As for your assertion that polonium is available over the internet ... while it is true that trace amounts (generally .1 microcurie) of polonium can be obtained over the internet (it is used in a few industries, most commonly to calibrate sensitive instruments), it would take about 30,000 such orders to achieve the 3 millicuries necessary to kill one person. As for the chances of someone getting his hands on a discarded industrial instrument and extracting the contained sealed polonium, the difficulty and expense of doing that would be prohibitive.

As a result, I completely dismiss theories that involve the idea that Litvinenko was killed accidentally while somehow handling the element. And, while I believe it entirely likely that he could have been poisoned (if a torturous death were desired), I can’t comprehend why that method of assassination would have been chosen. A bullet to the head would be much more in character, and would have caused much less international notice. (Not that Russia would concern itself with such ‘negative publicity’ – but I doubt that they would endure it for such an inconsequential reason, when a .22 with a silencer would have caused minimal notice, and maximum effect.)

Finally, I do not agree with those who dismiss out of hand the idea that terrorists would not consider using polonium in a weapon of mass destruction. Although there are certainly many less expensive, and more readily available radioactive/chemical/biological agents, precisely because of its lethality in minute doses, and because of the fact that it can be fatal to large numbers of people if airborne or ingested (such as in a small public water supply), it would remain (at least near the bottom) of my list of elements to fear. The expense involved would make it less desirable than other alternatives.

With that said, I think it may be time to stop focusing obsessively on airline safety, and start both (1) sealing our borders, and (2) considering the threat posed by other methods of (even wider and more torturous) mass destruction – especially those involving nuclear, chemical or biological agents.

The seemingly disjointed nature of this post is precisely why I did not attempt to touch the subject last night (it really requires a few essays of its own, on each and every topic – many of which I do not consider myself worthy of tackling authoritatively). So simply label this ‘joanie’s semi-educated opinion’ and take it or leave it.

Again, thanks for the clarification. I agree that it had to be made, but I’m not sure that anyone has a definitive answer.

~ joanie

a california girl said...

This is a fascinating list of comments. I don't feel qualified to add my own, but I'm learning a lot. :-]

Anonymous said...

These are interesting takes on a very complicated story.

jim said...

Couldn't Litvenenko have had a small sore on his skin and the polonium was absorbed that way? I guess it's a far-fetched theory but no more far-fetched than anything else I've heard.

Whatever the reason, from all I've read the world is better off without him.

sandra said...

Let's put it this way:

If Steyn were as sloppy in handling radioactive material as he was in writing this column, then

___________________________________

(finish this statement yourself).

3timesalady said...

Couldn't Litvenenko have had a small sore on his skin and the polonium was absorbed that way?

From what I understand, you'd have to be nuts to handle this element and it would be transported in a sealed container. Litvinenko wasn't nuts.

3timesalady said...

That's a great analysis Joanie, and don't apologize that it's "disjointed." This whole investigation is disjointed! It's so bizarre.

Anonymous said...

Good info, cw-patriot.

Here's a good recent article:

http://today.reuters.com/news/articleinvesti
ng.aspx?view=CN&storyID=2006-12-27T193635Z_01_L27560621_RTRIDST_
0_POISONING-RUSSIA-YUKOS-UPDATE-3.XML&rpc=66&type=qcna

Gary Burgess said...

It is likely Litvinenko caused his own death carrying radioactive materials for his beloved muslims.

"Anonymous"-- a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. You're leaping to unsubstantiated and irrational conclusions.

calbrindisi said...

The clear implication is that Kovtun [one of 3 Russian men who traveled from Russia to London the day before Litvinenko was hospitalized] brought the radioactive material with him, though a Hamburg police spokesman acknowledged that, "We cannot yet say with certainty whether he had the polonium inside his body or whether he carried it with him on his body."

This quote is from this article:

http://www.thefirstpost.co.uk/index.php?menuID=2&subID=1219

Based on what you say, Joanie, this guy must have been a complete idiot. I don't get it. But like the poster above said, it sounds like Litvinenko wasn't working in our best interests so we shouldn't be sorry he's not around anymore.

cw-patriot said...

John, your eloquent post (#5 above) brings to mind what I have always told people about what I value in a person (I am absolutely sure I have already told you this before, so feel free to skip this post … I am simply writing it as an addendum for others who may stumble upon yours :).

I can’t tell you how many times I have heard people -- both in the media/entertainment industry and in my own daily walk -- talk about the ultimate importance (in a mate, especially, but also as regards other relationships) of height, hair color, wealth, etc. Such inanity always disturbs me terribly.

My completely subjective and simplistic test of a person’s ‘value’ in my eyes is in the answer to the question, ‘Would I want to be marooned on a deserted island with this person?’ -- i.e., does this person have both (1) the qualities needed to survive under dire, even primitive, circumstances, and (2) the depth of character with which I would wanted to be exclusively associated for a lengthy period of time? Is he/she honest, kind, spiritual, courageous, resourceful, creative, intuitive, and industrious?

Your question (‘I asked her to imagine that she and her family had been transported back to a pre-historic time and left there to fend for herself. How would she survive?’) to your daughter bears a striking resemblance to what I have tried to convey for many years to people to whom I am close.

If the worst imaginable future scenarios come to pass (the next step beyond what you describe as 'the Visigoths being at the gate'), the qualities I described above – and those that you implied in your lesson to your daughter – will be far more valuable than a person’s height, hair color, or material wealth.

The current state of our society – with its increasing emphasis on the amassing of creature comforts, instant gratification, deflection of responsibility for one’s own actions, the love of sedentary pursuits, lazy non-analytical thought processes, worship of counterfeit ‘heroes’, and voluntary ignorance – continues to render the authentic ‘pioneer spirit’, and the esteem of true character, more and more overlooked, unrecognized … and rare.

Traveling down such a superficial, reckless path in the midst of such historically unprecedented perilous times is nothing short of suicidal. And, if and when a major cataclysm befalls this country, that small minority that still possesses genuine physical and mental strength and agility, and the ability to ‘make do’ with what remains, will be infinitely better capable of surviving, and … God willing … rebuilding.

~ joanie

alexib said...

Well said, John.
Well said, Joanie.

Anonymous said...

Do you people buy your tinfoil hats from a catalog or do you make them yourselves? What a bunch of weirdos!!!!!!!!!!

Sandra said...

Anonymous said...
Do you people buy your tinfoil hats from a catalog or do you make them yourselves? What a bunch of weirdos!!!!!!!!!!


Go back to Democratic Underground.

You will feel much more at home there.

Sandra said...

___________________________________

3timesalady said...
Couldn't Litvenenko have had a small sore on his skin and the polonium was absorbed that way?

From what I understand, you'd have to be nuts to handle this element and it would be transported in a sealed container.

Litvinenko wasn't nuts.
___________________________________
______________________________________________________________________

Litvinenko was an advocate for the scumbag Chechen muslims.

Litvinenko converted to islam on his deathbed.


But thanks for your analysis of his mental condition.

I'm sure it was based on deep personal observation and knowledge

All_good_men said...

For a foreigner, Mark Steyn sure understands the US and the American people.

We are on the brink of a terrible tipping point which will result in the "perfect storm" for which 9/11 will be a day in the park.

John Cooper said...

Joanie--

I think you went right to the heart of the matter: Why Polonium? As you posted above, logically, this could not have been a simple assassination. My own personal theory is that it was more of a test run.

I speculated on another forum that what we just witnessed was the dreaded "dirty bomb" going off in a major city. It now appears that the contamination wasn't widespread, so I was probably wrong. OTOH, the only way one would know one was contaminated would be via a liquid scintillation count of a urine sample. It's my sense that very few labs have this expensive equipment.

My response from last month when questioned who was calling this a "dirty bomb" was:

"Nobody. That’s my point. What happened in London doesn’t fit the pre-determined profile. We’ve all seen the animated graphics on TV of how it’s "supposed" to happen, right?

First, there’s "supposed" to be a big explosion on top of a tall building in a major city, followed a brilliant red cloud (on the video depiction) of nuclear contamination floating downwind over the city.

What if the terrorists have though of a better way (maybe with a little help from the Russians)? If their goal is to kill people and instill terror, what better way than to contaminate a lot of people without them even knowing until it’s too late?

Obviously, it’s taken weeks for the London authorities to figure out that there may have been widespread radiological contamination in London. It took them weeks to even identify the isotope. Kinda’ makes one wonder about what sort of monitoring capability they have or don’t have over there, doesn’t it?

Kinda’ makes me wonder what sort of monitoring capability WE here in the U.S. have (or don’t have), too. We can only hope it’s more sophisticated that what they use in London."


If what I read is true, Polonium "sublimates" (not technically correct but you get the idea) - via "spallation" at 130 degrees F. IOW, you could put a tiny amount the size of a grain of salt in light fixture or something and it would turn into an aerosol and spew it's deadly, invisible, and practically undetectable poison.

The Wikipedia entry is eyebrow-raising.

"The median lethal dose (LD50) for acute radiation exposure is generally about 4.5 Sv. The committed effective dose equivalent 210Po is 0.51 µSv/Bq if ingested, and 2.5 µSv/Bq if inhaled. Since 210Po has an activity of 166 TBq per gram (1 gram produces 166×10^12 decays per second), a fatal 4-Sv dose can be caused by ingesting 8.8 MBq (238 microcurie), about 50 nanograms (ng), or inhaling 1.8 MBq (48 microcurie), about 10 ng. One gram of 210Po could thus in theory poison 100 million people of whom 50 million would die. A minimal lethal dose for an 80 kg person is 4 millicuries, or 0.89 micrograms, an almost invisible speck of matter."

Dawnsearlylight said...

This entry and the comments are FASCINATING!

danthemangottschall said...

All,

I don't know what to think of this:

http://www.mail-archive.com/serbiannewsnetwork@yahoogroups.com/msg02913.html

Interesting or ridiculous?

2ndAmendmentDefender said...

There is no way Putin ordered such stupid assassination. As Machiavelli said, "The skillful politician does not make obvious mistakes."

I believe Litvinenko's death was an accident that happened with deranged people playing with dangerous toys. (Don't ask me how the Polonium got in his body. I'll let those who know about those things figure it out.) But if there was a real conspiracy, then it was probably carried out to damage Russian government.

Al said...

Dan,

excerpts from your url:

http://www.vor.ru/index_eng.phtml?view=news4_eng&id=838

Voice of Russia December 4, 2006

Litvinenko probably worked for Al-Qaeda

Russian former KGB officer Alexander Litvinenko, who
died on November, 23 in a London hospital, could have
been engaged in delivering radioactive materials to
terrorists and probably worked for the al-Qaeda
international extremist group.

AND

Itar-Tass December 4, 2006


Scaramella says Litvinenko was engaged in radioactive contraband

LONDON - British police are conducting an intensive
probe into a version suggesting that former officer of
the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) Alexander
Litvinenko who died in a London hospital on November
23 had been involved in attempts of Al Qaeda to create
a so-called “dirty radioactive bomb,” the Sunday
Express weekly reported in its latest issue.

According to the publication, a contact of Litvinenko
Italian Professor Mario Scaramella who is currently
staying in a London hospital told the British
authorities that in 2000 Litvinenko helped to organise
a contraband supply of a batch of radioactive
materials from Russia to Zurich, Switzerland.

Sandra said...

John,

I do not have a scientific background in nuclear materials,

BUT

I would not trust Wikipedia.

It is pure leftwing rot.

Look up Seymour Hersh and Noam Chomsky on Wikipedia.

These extreme, rabid, longtime agents for the destruction of the US have gushing, laudatory biographies on Wikipedia.

When I changed their biographies to include their extensive leftwing, "Wipe out the USA" activties and writings,

I got a note from the Wikipedia staff that I was "vandalizing" their site and would be banned from it.

Within SECONDS they had erased all my corrections to the biographies of their two heroes, Chomsky and Hersh.

Sandra said...

Litvinenko, the spy, who was also a supporter of the Chechnyans apparently became a Muslim on his deathbed and requested his father give him a Muslim burial!

At the end of a London Times article :

"Litvinenko's father, Walter, said in an interview published today that his son - who was born an Orthodox Christian but had close links to Islamist rebels in Chechnya - had requested to be buried according to Muslim tradition after converting to Islam on his deathbed.

"He said ’I want to be buried according to Muslim tradition’," Mr Litvinenko told Moscow's Kommersant daily.

"I said, ’Well son, as you wish. We already have one Muslim in our family - my daughter is married to a Muslim. The important thing is to believe in the Almighty. God is one.’"

Here is the full article:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-2486268,00.html

stonemason said...

Sandra, Cooper's reference to Wikipedia was only in quoting some figures for lethality of Polonium. Those figures are basically correct.

I do, however, agree with you on the slant that Wikipedia takes. It is blatantly left wing. I have stopped viewing that site altogether for that reason.

Sandra said...

The dangerous thing about Wikipedia is that it is constantly quoted as an authoritive source.

Setting up Wikipedia, and establishing it (in the minds of many) as a supposed source for information is one of the smartest moves the left wing has done.

Even in supposedly benign topics such as sports the Wikipedia entries are virulently left wing.

daveburkett said...

Setting up Wikipedia, and establishing it (in the minds of many) as a supposed source for information is one of the smartest moves the left wing has done.

I agree. It is often in what are considered harmless areas that the left makes its greatest inroads into indoctrination. Wikipedia is a good example, especially in its treatment of what we would consider banal subjects.

smithy said...

This is a good dialogue on this puzzling mystery. I tend to agree with J. Cooper that this was some kind of test run, but the details and all the participants may never be known.

Al said...

The bottom line on Litvinenko is that

the muslims have LOTS of money to spread around.

And many jump through the hoops the muslims hold to get the muslim money.

Like Jim "F--- the Jews" Baker.

Like Jimmy Carter and his new book which accuses Israel of "apartheid" in its very title.

Like US university 'Middle East studies' departments.
(How many $ does Saudi Arabia pour into US university history, Middle East studies departments?)

Like the European Union.

I smelled the stink connected with Litvinenko when the very first reports said he was an advocate of the Chechens. What 'Russian' would be an advocate for the Chechens, who made videos of the chopping off of Russian soldiers' heads years before the Daniel Pearl and Nicholas Berg videos?

What Russian would be an advocate for the Chechens, who killed hundreds of Russians by blowing a Moscow apartment building, a Moscow theater, etc etc.

The Chechens are the most vicious of all the muslims, and through history have been used as mercenaries by many muslim countries.

When it came out further that Litvinenko (curses on him for the trouble it takes to spell his name) converted to islam on his deathbed--as reported by his own father--the stink was overpowering.

John Cooper said...

al:

Litvinenko claimed that it was Putin, not the Chechens who blew up the Moscow apartment building, a Moscow theater, etc etc.

The Litvinenko Case

Al said...

John,

Very disturbed US haters say Bush and Cheney blew up the World Trade Center.


And we already know that Litvinenko hated Putin

and that he just loved the Chechens.

.

John Cooper said...

Can Freedom Survive?

The fundamental question we face now is: Can the philosophy of individualism, inaugurated by Jefferson, Smith and Locke, survive? Or is it to wither away under the ever swelling shadow of a monster government and the womb to tomb security its social engineers are forcing upon us? Are we as a people to just passively accept being humble wards of the state and underlings to Washington's feudal lords who direct its encroachments, or do we still possess enough of that spirit that founded America to overthrow such trespassings upon the basic rights of man? Do we, as human beings, still value freedom; or is it really state omnipresence that we seek down deep in some craven corner of our souls?

Can we, as Americans, learn from the irrefutable lessons of Rome and other nations of history who succumbed to the arrogance of centralized statism and arbitrary law? Or does history have to repeat itself a few more times before we realize that reality cannot be cheated, that its laws must be obeyed in order for life to be good; that bread does not come from stones, nor wealth from paper dollars; that government's power is either limited or it is tyranny; and that a nation of spendthrifts is doomed to destruction.

Can we not see that the troubles we suffer from today are rooted in our abandonment of the individualist creed that originally built this nation? Are our memories so short, our craving for the unearned so strong, our obsession with security so great that we no longer wish to face life on the strengths of our own merits?

--Not Just for the 19th Century by Nelson Hultberg

Anonymous said...

Joanie, thanks for this post. Although Styne may have some details wrong (ie as regards Litvinenko), the substance of his comments is nonetheless spot on and very appropriate. We in the US have allowed ourselves to be distracted and knocked off track by subversive elements within and without the borders of our nation. Some are simply useful idiots, playing to the tune of their manipulators, but others, both internally and externally, know exactly what they are doing as they go about weakening and destroying our nation, its liberty and the morally contraining values (meaning christian principled values) it and our way of live are based upon.

As far as Litvinenko is concerned. I defintely believe the Russians killed him. I also believe he was a radical Islamic sympathiser and abettor. These two conditions (the Russiands killing him and his Islamic leanings) are far from mutually exclusive. In doing so, the Russians have sent a message to anyone (Islamic or otherwise) who they feel are subverting and undermining what Putin and his adherents believe to be Russian national interests. Problem is, I believe that what they see as their interests, and what US long term intertests are, are very, very divergent when it comes to long term Republican based, morally constrained liberty and a world-wide free market.

Unfortunately, even in our own country, the definition of and ramifications of a true world-wide free market and upon what values it must rest (ie the same values our morally constrained liberty rests upon) is being radically subverted and altered by economists, politicians, the media, entertainers, and far too many educators to the point where it is much more in line with what Putin and his ilk seek. And make no mistake what they seek, and what far too many leaders in our own nation seek, is an economic model that is giving rise to the most blatant and threatening socio-fascist world-wide system ever imagined. Its threat will dwarf, IMHO, the threat posed by the fascists and imperialists of the 1930s and 1940s. World powers are alinging themselves even now in regards to what is coming IMHO, and Red China inparticular and the Russians are at the forefront, using the outbreak of Islamic militancy to distract us...and it is a distraction that also must be addressed.

Sadly, in the face of this, we see an American populace that in far too great a numbers is horribly complacant and has lost its way as regards the foundational, fundamental ideals and values this nation was founded upon, and which allowed it to rise to become the most prosperous, generous, free, peaceful, and strongest nation the secular world has ever witnessed. I am sad to say that I believe that this complacancy and morass is going to be the catalyst for the most horrible consequences imaginable, either through terrorist attack or the rise and consequence of world powers and alliances diametrically opposed to our nation interests which will results in hundreds of thousands or millions of American dead, and the potential loss of all we hold dear.

Having said that, I believe that very set of circumstances will give rise to am awakening of the American spirit to shake of the shakles of its slumber and rise to the ocassion as it has done in the past. It is a deadly shame that it will take this type of thing to awaken us...because it does not have to be that way. Howerver, it appears as if though it is going to be that way. I still pray for and hold out hope for a revivial spirit taking hold more naturally and as a consequence of our own choice as a people...but either way, I believe it will occur. As a result of my own religious faith and my own travels across this nation, I know that there are yet tens of millions of faithful, morally principled, active Americans who are trying to do what is right and know what is occurring around them and I have absolute faith that in the end, they will rise to the challenge and bring other tens of millions along wih them in the hour of need, and God in Heaven will be their strength and salvation. Let tyrnats forge their chains, let terrorists make their plans, let burgoning agressor nations sharpen their swords, they will all ultimately fail against that shield.

As George Washington said, "No country upon earth ever had it more in its power to attain blessings. Much to be regretted indeed would it be, were we to depart from the road which Providence has pointed us to, so plainly; I cannot believe it will ever come to pass. The Great Governor of the Universe has led us too long and too far to forsake us in the midst of it. We may, now and then, get bewildered; but I hope and trust that there is good sense and virtue enough left to recover the right path."

And my favorite, by John Adams, "We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for the government of any other."

Anonymous said...

Good conversation and debate here about a confusing subject. I mailed this to a few friends.

Al said...

As far as Litvinenko is concerned. I defintely believe the Russians killed him. I also believe he was a radical Islamic sympathiser and abettor.

Jeff,

We are all free to believe whatever we want.

There is NO evidence at all that the Russians killed Litvinenko.

But Litvinenko WAS an aggressive agent for the Chechen muslims, and proud of that.

Anonymous said...

Well, the Russian government certainly, and realistically had the means, the motive, and the opportunity. While this alone does not prove they did it by any means, traces of the material have been linked to aircraft arriving from Russia and that is intial evidence linking the killers back to Russia. As you say, we are all free to believe what we want and perhaps more compelling evidence identifying the actual killers will come to light in the future.

In any case, I consider the discussion about Litvinenko, a side bar to what Joanie was trying to say with this post and to what Styne's article is all about.

Al said...

Styne's article was unfortunately flawed.

There is a lesson to be learned from that:

If you want to get a message across,

don't screw that up by doing a sloppy job when you put your message together.

Anonymous said...

We are all flawed and sloppy to one degree or another. Styne's message, despite whatever flaws, is a critical and compelling one...and is pretty spot-on as far as I am concerned.

There was only one perfect messenger, and I look forward to His return someday, either in my lifetime, or thereafter when I can return with Him in the clouds...but that is a matter of my own faith.

Until then, we have to put up with our own flawed selves and make the most of, and spread widely the good messages we come across, while ferreting through the human frailities and mistakes. In this case, what Styne is saying of and to us as Americans, is something very worth hearing and something very worth repeating IMHO, despite some of the details that we may view differently. That's why I am glad Joanie posted it to generate these very discussions.

Best regards.

Sandra said...

The only concrete thing about the Litvinenko situation is that he was an aggressive agent for the Chechen muslims.

The news media's beloved palestinians constantly blow themselves up as they ineptly try to make bombs in their eagerness to kill the infidel.

It is certainly possible that Litvinenko did the same thing to himself.

Sandra said...

Suggestion for Joanie,

Why don't you reprint Steyn's attempt MINUS the debatable material.

Then we could have a discussion of the points that originally got you to post the article.

John Cooper said...

Jeff--

I suspect you know more about what Russia is up to than I do, but it seems that they're supplying every potential enemy of America with arms and nuclear technology right now. Iran, North Korea, China, Syria, Venezuela.

From this article:

~~~~~~~~~~
Since 1992, Russia has sold Iran hundreds of major weapons systems, including twenty T-72 tanks, ninety-four air-to-air missiles, and a handful of combat aircraft like the MiG-29. Late last year, Russia agreed to sell Iran a $700 million surface-to-air missile defense system (SA-15 Gauntlet) along with thirty TOR M-1 air-defense missile systems, ostensibly to defend its soon-to-be-complete, Russian-built nuclear reactor at Bushehr. Moscow also plans to upgrade Tehran’s Su-24, MiG-29 aircraft, and T-72 battle tanks. Iran has shown interest in S-300 anti-aircraft missiles from Russia and Belarus, which can intercept enemy aircraft ninety to 180 miles away. Michael Eisenstadt, director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy’s Military and Security Studies Program, says Iran is building up its naval presence. In April 2006, the Iranians claimed to have tested a high-speed torpedo—similar to the Russian-made VA-111 Shkval—capable of destroying large warships or submarines. Iran already fields China’s Silkworm anti-shipping missile and an array of mine technologies.
~~~~~~~~~~

Am I wrong, or are they not our friends?

John Cooper said...

The State of Jihad - A look at the state of the major theaters, and some under the radar, in the Long War by Bill Roggio

John Cooper said...

If you have a couple hours on your hands, this bit of history that a good friend sent me is worth reading. It's the transcript of a 1973 interview with Loy W. Henderson of the U.S. State Department 1922-1960. Mr. Henderson was Director, Near Eastern and African Affairs, 1946-48; Ambassador to India, 1948-51; and Ambassador to Iran, 1951-55. He was a "Soviet Specialist" who reached the peak of his career in the Middle East. He was one of a dwindling number of State Department employees who actually loved America.

There are too many interwoven plots in this piece to make a coherent post, but the Russian interest in Iran was one that stood out to me and is most pertinent to this thread.

~~~~~~~~~~

"If the Russians could break through Iran to the Persian Gulf, they would be within a couple of hundred miles of most of the known oil resources of the world and would be overlooking millions of square miles of Southern Asia. Iranian independence and territorial integrity were, therefore, of vital importance, not only to the Western world but to all peoples who looked to Middle Eastern oil as the source of their energy."

"...during that period [the 1940s!] the agents of Moscow were for the most part careful in their propaganda in that area. They did not wish to offend the religious sensibilities of the Moslems. Their main thesis was "the imperialist domination--get rid of the imperialists, they are exploiting you." They were not agitating for the establishment of Communist regimes. Their line was "throw out the imperialists and their stooges and bring in friends of the people." They realized that the Moslems of the Middle East had no more affection for communism than did the people of the Western world. Their propaganda therefore played down ideological points of view and stressed economic and nationalistic."
~~~~~~~~~~

Arlene Albrecht said...

This is a very interesting article and a very interesting discussion. Thanks for posting it and for all the additional input (I've saved a lot of the information.)

cw-patriot said...

John, your Henderson quote is fascinating. I have bookmarked the entire interview and hope to be able to read it in its entirety soon.

Also read ‘The State of Jihad’. It’s terribly depressing, not only because of the inroads Al Qaeda and its ‘allies’ are making all over the globe, but also because of the fact that so few of us are aware of the extent of the spread of the cancer (I have to plead ignorance to much of what was discussed.)

An aside: Our daughter is scheduled to leave on her fourth work-related trip to Bangkok soon, so the multiple explosions that are taking place there tonight (3 dead, 20 wounded so far) aren’t sitting well here. It’s amazing that, since the coup several months ago, little or nothing has been mentioned in the media regarding the growing Muslim insurgency, the coup leaders' Muslim ties, the fact that Thailand is one of our few genuine allies in the area, etc.

Ignorance is not bliss. It's suicide.

cw-patriot said...

Thanks, Jeff, for the insightful comments.

As is almost always the case, I agree with your every word ... other than the degree of your optimism regarding America’s future ability to ‘rise again’ from the cataclysm that appears to lie ahead.

I, too, believe that Litvinenko was killed by Putin’s thugs, but, for the life of me, cannot comprehend why the killing wasn’t simply accomplished with a bullet to the back of the head. John seems to believe that the use of polonium indicates that the death may have represented some sort of ‘test run’.

I especially find it hard to believe that Litvinenko’s death (the first case of fatal polonium poisoning in history, and the first human fatality as a result of the effects of alpha radiation from any source) was accidental, and that he was somehow transporting the polonium. There are many indicators that point away from ‘accident’ in this case – many of which have been intelligently discussed here on this thread.

Perhaps the fact that most rules out accidental death is the fact that ingested polonium contamination typically would have a delay of several days or weeks before the victim becomes ill since it would take that amount of time for the level of radiation emitted to pose a threat to the body’s tissues and organs, and for symptoms to ensue. The fact that Litvinenko began exhibiting symptoms within hours of visiting the London pub in which the poisoning most likely took place indicates that he ingested a massive dose of the radioisotope -- many times the minimal lethal amount. That he would have been careless enough to somehow swallow or inhale so much of such a lethal substance tests the bounds of belief.

Yet, at the same time, why would his murderers waste so much of such a rare and precious substance, when simply a fraction of what was used would have sufficed?

With that (perhaps ridiculous) contradiction, I will probably end my part of this debate! I appreciate all of the ideas that have been offered on this thread (the discussion here, even though there have been occasional disagreements, has been very informative, and has remained civil. Thanks to all who have participated!)

As for your belief that, following the cataclysm that both you and I see somewhere over the horizon, the remnant of informed patriot Americans will rise to the challenge and bring other tens of millions along with them in the hour of need, and God in Heaven will be their strength and salvation ...

Jeff, for a very long time I had difficulty attempting to comprehend where we find America in scriptural descriptions of the end times. Only recently have I come to believe that the reason that so many theologians have difficulty identifying America’s role in the end times may simply be because America, as we know it, will no longer exist.

As both you and I have often said, the Lord is the reason America has stood as the most moral, strong, prosperous, generous civilization in the history of mankind. He provided the tools for our prosperity, and for our countless successes against all threats to our well-being and existence. We have been blessed far beyond our ability to attribute those blessings to our own strength and goodness.

Both you and I have also lamented the fact that America continues to turn her back on her Divine Benefactor to greater and greater degrees, and in more wickedly inventive ways. Reverence for life, justice, goodness, truth, character, and integrity have given way to love of comfort, affluence, ease, leisure and self. We have become weak in body and spirit.

Yet mankind has fallen so far that I believe America is its last best hope. And, during these times in which the enemies of liberty are gaining strength, resolve and virulent blood thirst, if we cannot pull ourselves out of our self-induced apathetic/ignorant stupor, I fear that man’s reign over this planet may be coming to a close.

I believe your vision of a small remnant of resolute patriots rising to the challenge and bringing other tens of millions along with them in the hour of need is the stuff of which miracles are made. Which is precisely why we cannot dismiss the possibility. The ultimate question is, will He deem us worthy of such a miracle after so many of us have turned our backs on His teachings?

You pray, and believe, He will.

I pray He will.

~ joanie

ProudPodunknative said...

Only recently have I come to believe that the reason that so many theologians have difficulty identifying America’s role in the end times may simply be because America, as we know it, will no longer exist.

From the results so far of your January Poll it looks like most people here agree with you.

fascismisyourwosrtenemy said...

"That means bruising political battles, because some people in virtually all professional disciplines lie with the enemy and many others unknowingly support them. We have allowed them to weasel their way into positions of power that give them direct influence over measures intended to expose and stop them."

This is one of the best parts of the whole article, and it points the finger and judges and politicians especially.

Anonymous said...

This is relevant:

Insight of a Sergeant Major (The author, J.D. Pendry, is a retired Army Command Sergeant Major who writes for Random House.)

Jimmy Carter, you're the father of the Islamic Nazi movement. You threw the Shah under the bus, welcomed the Ayatollah home and then lacked the spine to confront the terrorists when they took our embassy and our people hostage. You're the Runner-in-Chief.

Bill Clinton, you played "ring around the Lewinsky" while the terrorists were at war with us. You got us into a fight with them in Somalia, and then you ran from it. Your weak-willed responses emboldened the killers. Each time you failed to respond adequately they grew bolder, until 9/11.

John Kerry, dishonesty is your most prominent attribute. You lied about American Soldiers in Vietnam. Your military service, like your life, is more fiction than fact. You've accused our Soldiers of terrorizing women and in Iraq. You called Iraq "the wrong war, wrong place, wrong time"... the same words you used to describe Vietnam. You're a fake. You want to run from Iraq and abandon the Iraqis to murderers just as you did the Vietnamese. Iraq, like Vietnam, is another war that you were for, before you were against it.

John Murtha, you said our military was broken. You said we can't win militarily in Iraq. You accused United States Marines of cold-blooded murder without proof. And said we should re-deploy to Okinawa. Okinawa, John? And the Democrats call you their military expert. Are you sure you didn't suffer a traumatic brain injury while you were off building your war hero resume? You're a sad, pitiable, corrupt and washed up politician. You're not a Marine sir. You wouldn't amount to a pimple on a real Marine's ass. You're a phony and a disgrace. Run away John.

Dick Durbin, you accused our Soldiers at Guantanamo of being Nazis, tenders of Soviet style gulags and as bad as the regime of Pol Pot who murdered two million of his own people after your party abandoned South East Asia to the Communists. Now you want to abandon the Iraqis to the same fate. History was not a good teacher for you, was it? See Dick run.

Ted Kennedy, for days on end you held poster-sized pictures from Abu Grhaib in front of any available television camera. Al Jazeera quoted you saying that Iraq's torture chambers were open under new management. Did you see the news this week Teddy? The Islamic Nazis demonstrate real torture for you again. If you truly supported our troops, you'd show the world poster-sized pictures of that atrocity and demand the annihilation of it. Your legislation stripping support from the South Vietnamese which led to a communist victory there. You're a bloated fool bent on repeating the same historical blunder that turned freedom-seeking people over to homicidal, genocidal maniacs. To paraphrase John Murtha, all while sitting on your wide, gin-soaked rear-end in Washington.

Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Carl Levine, Barbara Boxer, Diane Feinstein, Russ Feingold, Hillary Clinton, Pat Leahy, Chuck Schumer et al ad nauseam. Every time you stand in front of television cameras and broadcast to the Islamic Nazis that we went to war because our President lied. That the war is wrong and our Soldiers are torturers. That we should leave Iraq, you give the Islamic butchers - the same ones that tortured and mutilated American Soldiers - cause to think that we will run away again and all they have to do is hang on a little longer.

American news media, the New York Times particularly. Each time you publish stories about national defense secrets and our intelligence gathering methods, you become one with the sub-human pieces of camel dung that torture and mutilate the bodies of American Soldiers. You can't strike up the courage to publish cartoons, but you can help Al Qaeda destroy my country. Actually, you are more dangerous to us than Al Qaeda is. Think about that each time you face Mecca to admire your Pulitzers.

You are America's axis of idiots. Your collective stupidity will destroy us. Self-serving politics and terrorist abetting news scoops are more important to you than our national security or the lives of innocent civilians and Soldiers. It bothers you that defending ourselves gets in the way of your elitist sport of politics and your ignorant editorializing. There is as much blood on your hands as is on the hands of murdering terrorists. Don't ever doubt that. Your frolics will only serve to extend this war as they extended Vietnam. If you want our Soldiers home, as you claim, knock off the crap and try supporting your country ahead of supporting your silly political aims and aiding our enemies. Yes, I'm questioning your patriotism. Your loyalty ends with -self. I'm also questioning why you're stealing air that decent Americans could be breathing. You don't deserve the protection of our men and women in uniform. You need to run away from this war and this country. Leave the war to the people who have the will to see it through and the country to people who are willing to defend it.

No Commander in Chief, you don't get off the hook either. Our country has two enemies. Those who want to destroy us from the outside and those who attempt it from within. Your Soldiers are dealing with the outside force. It's your obligation to support them by confronting the axis of idiots. America must hear it from you that these people are harming our country, abetting the enemy and endangering our safety. Well up a little anger please, and channel it toward the appropriate target. You must prosecute those who leak national security secrets to the media. You must prosecute those in the media who knowingly publish those secrets. Our Soldiers need you to confront the enemy that they cannot. They need you to do it now.

John Cooper said...

Joanie--

If not a "test run", then perhaps more a sales demonstration, as in "Look what we have for sale and look what it can do."

It should also be mentioned that Polonium is used in the triggers for thermo-nuclear weapons if I am not mistaken. When you combine it with a light metal such as Beryllium, the combination gives off fast neutrons, which triggers the main reaction.

So the public squandering of way more Polonium than was needed might just have been a way of announcing to terrorist states around the world that, "We have plenty of this stuff. Come and get it. We can supply all your nuclear weapons needs."

I had originally though this curious Litivenko death might have been an experiment in a new type of binary poison. Give the victim a small dose of Polonium, then later a dose of a light metal, not necessarily in that order. We'll never know about that...

One thing we have learned is that governments around the world simply have no practical way of detecting alpha emitters. They can't detect them while in transport, and they can't detect them once they're inside the human body.

The only way to identify the isotope is to test a sample in some very rare and expensive equipment. That probably explains why it took about two weeks to determine that Litivenko had been poisoned with Polonium, not Thallium as originally announced.

If it makes us feel any safer, alpha emitters CAN be detected once they've been released into the atmosphere with a sensor of the proper type.

But once again, knowing that there's something radioactive out there doesn't tell you what element or combination of elements it is. It could take weeks to identify the particular isotope(s). By then, it's too late.

So that's another lesson for us here: There's nothing any government can do to protect you and I from this kind of attack.

Al said...

may simply be because America, as we know it, will no longer exist.

Does it exist NOW?

Where Hollywood expresses HATRED of the US?

Where the 'news' media works as an agent for the destruction of the US?

Where the 'courts' are an agent for the destruction of the US?

Where groups like CAIR and the ACLU use the US 'court' system to destroy the US?

Where non-Americans like Soros, Kissinger, Breznewski, Madeleine Albright, run US policy?

Where former supposed US 'president' Jimmy Carter works actively for the destruction of the US?

Where muslim raised Obama is an instant 'presidential' candidate?

Where the presidential 'frontrunner' is Hillary Clinton, who wrote her college dissertation on Saul Alinsky and how to wipe out the US?

Need I go on?

Anonymous said...

There's more interesting and educated theories under this article than anywhere else I've read, thanks.

John Cooper said...

The Sargeant Major had it right on all counts. Thanks for posting it, anonymous.

I have to say that Bush's failure to prosecute the leakers and the media who knowingly published classified information leaves the impression that he's not serious about winning this war after all.

I'm afraid he's turning out to be a paper tiger, too. He lets everybody get away with everything, both at home and abroad.

I'm not suggesting America needs a "strong leader", just a chief executive who will enforce the domestic laws made by our representatives, and the treaties they have signed.

If I were living in Taiwan or Israel, I would be real nervous about my future right now.

Sandra said...

Based on what is perfectly visible from the "news,"

for example the actions of Jimmy Carter, Jim Baker, the EU, the UN, the US State Dept.,

Taiwan and Israel are the walking dead.

Not pleasant---but realistic.

cw-patriot said...

John, you commented:

It should also be mentioned that Polonium is used in the triggers for thermo-nuclear weapons, if I am not mistaken. When you combine it with a light metal such as Beryllium, the combination gives off fast neutrons, which triggers the main reaction

In suitcase or backpack devices, polonium might be preferable because the minute amount that would be required for the trigger would allow for smaller, easily-transportable devices .

If an Islamic terrorist organization has access to large (in relation to its rarity) supplies of polonium -- access that the west may not be aware of -- I agree with you that this may have been an advertisement of the sort: We have plenty of this stuff. Come and get it. We can supply all your nuclear weapons needs.

I had originally thought that polonium wouldn’t be the ‘element of choice’ for such ventures, but I’m starting to change my mind. In combination with beryllium-9, it could certainly be used as a trigger in a suitcase or backpack bomb, and such a device would be significantly more easy to deliver than a missile-delivered one, especially taking our open borders, and the inability to detect their presence, into consideration. And, considering the fact that each of these suitcases can reportedly yield up to ten kilotons of explosive power, it might be time to stop frisking old ladies at airports, and start building the still-just-a-convenient-PR-mirage seven-hundred-mile fence that has yet to receive congressional funding.

The main drawback to using polonium would be its short half-life, but, if their supply is sufficient, I suppose the triggers could be ‘replenished’ every four or five months.

Another aspect of the Litvinenko mystery:

If he were involved in the transport of polonium for polonium/beryllium triggers (obviously not being transported together) in tiny, non-solid containers (say, in a foil envelope), I suppose that accidental compression, and then tearing, could have occurred. That would explain the long trail of contamination that has been discovered since his death – although I can’t imagine how he could have traveled so extensively without discovering a container’s breach. In which case it would require a huge leap in conjecture, but would not be entirely out of the realm of possibility, for Litvinenko to have then inhaled a large amount (relative to its toxicity) of the polonium powder.

At the same time, it’s hard to believe that such carelessness, on so many levels, could have occurred.

Not identical, but similar, activities have supposedly occurred in the past, without accident. About ten years ago, the Chechen mafia supposedly sold several dozen complete nuclear suitcases to Al Qaeda operatives and the Mujahadeen, for which bin Laden reportedly paid $30 million in cash and two tons of heroin.

It seems that, the more I speculate, the greater the list of ‘possibilities’ grows, and the more murky the issue becomes to me. I’m afraid I’ve raised (at least in my own mind) more questions than I’ve answered. (*sigh*)

The only thing that is certain here is your horrifying statement:

There's nothing any government can do to protect you and I from this kind of attack.

Thanks to the evil forces that seek our destruction, and the impotence/ignorance of our leaders, the truth becomes more painful every day.

~ joanie

sandra said...

About ten years ago, the Chechen mafia supposedly sold several dozen complete nuclear suitcases to Al Qaeda operatives and the Mujahadeen, for which bin Laden reportedly paid $30 million in cash and two tons of heroin.

Joanie,

For those of us not educated in this area,

what is a nuclear suitcase?

cw-patriot said...

Al,

Of couse America as we know it does exist now.

That doesn’t imply that she bears anything but a passing resemblance to the America that our Founders envisioned and forged.

I can still worship where I wish.

I can still build a home where I wish.

I can still work at the job(s) I want to pursue.

I can still keep (at least a shrinking portion of) the fruits of my labor.

I can still receive the best healthcare available in the world.

I can still walk freely in my neighborhood, without fear of surveillance.

Many of the above freedoms are significantly more curtailed than they should be (i.e., the home I build must abide by a mountain of local zoning ordinances which unnecessarily restrict my personal freedom, the percentage of my earnings that is stolen in the form of taxes is criminal, the amount I pay for healthcare, and the legal/governmental restrictions placed on my doctors, are government-caused and leftist-agenda-driven, and all of the above liberties are being further eroded with the passage of time).

I am well aware of all of the atrocities you listed, but, at the same time, when the ‘end times’ are upon us, and America (even America as we now know it ... a far cry from her original blueprint) no longer exists, I believe that death may well be preferable to conditions that will exist on this planet. Life defined by, or in constant reaction to and fear of, unfettered violence, barbarism, and human-on-human atrocity does not make for a life of any eternal significance.

I wrote the following to a good friend today, in response to a somewhat apologetically negative message in which he lamented the current state of the American citizenry [the italics are excerpts from his message]:

_______________

I wish only to associate with people who stand up, and no less.

Rick and I know quite a few good people in this area, and are warmed by their friendship (as is evidenced by the fact that probably twenty or thirty people stopped by at various times over the holidays, bringing ‘tidings of good cheer’ because they know that Rick isn’t feeling up to par just now). That so many people would do that was the nicest Christmas gift we received. And in that way, and so many others, we consider ourselves deeply blessed.

With that said, I believe that two, possibly three, people I know in this area (friends included) have a clue about what is going on in this sorry world. All of the rest of these good people know only what the ‘powers that be’ want them to know.

That used to trouble me. It no longer does. I have chosen to enjoy the friendship and acquaintance-ship of those whose paths cross mine on a regular basis, sweep in front of my own door, keep my ‘ess and double-ewes’ clean and in working order, talk to anyone who is interested in knowing whatever I may know about what lies ahead, and simply hunker down for the disaster-to-come.

One cannot force-feed information to those who aren’t even aware that they are hungry.

We watched the Rose Parade this morning, and I waited and waited for the U.S. Marine Corps Band ... and we got barely 30 seconds of them.

It is futile to expect otherwise from a society whose ‘musical tastes’ now plead ignorance of the classics, in deference to creations composed and ‘performed’ by ‘artists’ who otherwise would be a part of the criminal element – some of whom actually manage to engage in both pursuits simultaneously.

_______________

I believe that most who visit this site are acutely aware of America’s decline. But, despite the fact that our sovereignty and our status as a free republic has already been dramatically diluted, it is difficult to imagine what the state of the world will be when we no longer exist at all.

I pray that my children will not be witness to that day.

~ joanie

cw-patriot said...

The term ‘suitcase bomb’ or ‘nuclear suitcase’ is typically used to describe a one- to ten-kiloton portable nuclear bomb.

Here’s a fairly accurate (a few faulty statistics and conclusions, IMO) article on the subject (I’m not endorsing the writer, mind you):

http://www.lewrockwell.com/watson/watson27.html

daveburkett said...

Excellent thread! Learning much.

calbrindisi said...

Not identical, but similar, activities have supposedly occurred in the past, without accident. About ten years ago, the Chechen mafia supposedly sold several dozen complete nuclear suitcases to Al Qaeda operatives and the Mujahadeen, for which bin Laden reportedly paid $30 million in cash and two tons of heroin.

I didn't know the Chechen connection to this kind of activity until now.

I have learned a lot on this subject here too. Joanie and John Cooper, only if you are comfortable telling it, what was your connection to the nuclear field when you worked in it?

Al said...

About ten years ago, the Chechen mafia supposedly sold several dozen complete nuclear suitcases to Al Qaeda operatives and the Mujahadeen, for which bin Laden reportedly paid $30 million in cash and two tons of heroin.

And of course Litvinenko was a hard working agent for the Chechens.

.

Ellwoodlee said...

Can you suggest any more reading material that a layman can get ahold of to understand this portable nuclear threat even better? Maybe you can spare me a couple hours of scouring the internet.

TIA,

EL

Al said...

The term ‘suitcase bomb’ or ‘nuclear suitcase’ is typically used to describe a one- to ten-kiloton portable nuclear bomb.

Not much of an explanation.

What does one to ten kiloton mean?

What does it take to set it off?

What damage can it do?

danthemangottschall said...

Al, didya bother to read the link following the sentence you quoted?

al said...

stantheman,

Lew Rockwell is a Libertarian.

That's the bunch that are in a frenzy to have all drugs "legalized."

Here is an "article" from Lew Rockwell's website:

Marijuana Is Good for Your Brain
If you're a rat, and maybe if you're a human.


What's left of Lew Rockwell's brain is off no interest to me.

danthemangottschall said...

The article wasn't written by Rockwell. Do you believe in guilt by association? You are awfully quick to broadly generalize. Libertarians believe in legalizing drugs so all libertarian ideas aren't worth considering? Are you and Sandra related?

Al said...

stantheman,

Lew Rockwell's current site features this article promoting George Soros:

The Other Israel Lobby
George Soros and Jeremy Ben-Ami aim to take on Aipac and change US foreign policy.
Article by Gregory Levey.

The current Rockwell site features this article:

Chris Hedges: America’s Holy Warriors

By Chris Hedges

The drive by the Christian right to take control of military chaplaincies, which now sees radical Christians holding roughly 50 percent of chaplaincy appointments in the armed services and service academies, is part of a much larger effort to politicize the military and law enforcement. This effort signals the final and perhaps most deadly stage in the long campaign by the radical Christian right to dismantle America’s open society and build a theocratic state.


The Rockwell site features virulent anti-Semite Charley Reese.

A site selling Soros and his "ideas," marijuana, and Christian bashing is not where I go to get information.

Danthemangottschall said...

All good points, actually. I expect that's why Joanie said she doesn't "endorse" the site, just that particular description of suitcase nukes.

I agree with many libertarian views but certainly not those that you have excerpted here, and I have no use for anyone who supports the ideas of phony "conservative" Charley Reese.

Someone mentioned above that Wikipedia is a liberal site. I once tried to correct their site's entry on Reese where they describe him as "making controversial statements about Jews." I told them how watered down that statement was and I provided examples of statements of his that were outright anti-Semitic. I was told that my corrections were not objective.

stonemason said...

Here’s part of an interesting article on the Litvinenko poisoning:

"German investigators are considering the possibility that polonium-210 was smuggled through the country and might be connected to the radioactive poisoning of a Russian security service defector in London. …

"'Alongside several other versions behind this crime, we are seriously considering the possibility that Litvinenko's death could have been connected to the illegal trade in nuclear materials,' a police source told the German newspaper Berliner Zeitung, adding that no clear evidence had been uncovered yet."

On a trip to Germany, Dmitry Kovtun – who met with Litvinenko on the day of his poisoning, along with Andrei Lugovoi, a former "security" man for Berezovsky – shed radioactivity in several Hamburg locations. The German trip was undertaken before the meeting with Litvinenko.

Kovtun is now apparently in a hospital in Moscow, along with Lugovoi. The Berliner Zeitung quotes a police source as saying: "'We know that there has been a demand for nuclear materials in terrorist circles for several years,' … adding that Litvinenko's partners could have been involved in smuggling schemes."

Litvinenko, we know, was desperate for cash, and was reportedly involved in a blackmailing scheme targeting several Russian mafia figures and politicians. Now we learn, according to the London Times,
"Sources in Spain last week said he had crossed Russian mafia figures. They claimed he had provided information that helped lead to the arrest in May of nine mafia members, including a senior gang leader with interests in Russia and Spain."

The nine include Alexander Gofstein, a lawyer for the Yukos oil company of Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky, and Oleg Vorontsov, a former high-ranking adviser to Boris Yeltsin; they are charged with money-laundering.

Another figure in this murky drama, scamster and professional Russophobe Mario Scaramella, was recently arrested for… weapons smuggling.

We don't know the specifics of what exactly happened: a horrible accident that resulted from an attempt to smuggle polonium, a mafia hit against a stool pigeon, or, perhaps, a little of both.

What we do know, however, is that the accusations lodged against Putin and his government by major media outlets in the West are completely without any basis in fact, and that coverage of this bizarre affair has been absolutely shameful.


http://www.antiwar.com/justin/?articleid=10228

Sandra said...

stonemason,

The site

http://www.antiwar.com/justin/?articleid=10228

put out by Justin Raimando (sp) is no winner either.

In this case he is on the right track (with some overstatement)in my opinion.

Dantheman,

Wikipedia is very dangerous, as has been mentioned here, because many lamebrains quote it as an authoritative source.

Here is an article which points out problems with wikipedia:

Wikipedia is hardly authoritative on any subject

By DEREK DONOVAN Dec. 31, 2006

http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/contact_us/about_np1/16353073.htm



wikipedia is rabidly leftwing.

And part of the left's agenda today is aggressive anti-Semitism.

Whenever I and those I know have tried to correct the leftist garbage on wikipedia, we get notes from the management that we are "vandalizing" their site.

John Cooper said...

calbrindisi:

I used to help build nuclear power plants, which is how I learned a little about nuclear physics. I still have the rad-protection manuals in my library.

Everything I know about nuclear weapons I learned from Tom Clancy novels (grin).

In this day and age, the fact that basic rad-protection isn't taught in high school is a crime. The subject is not that complicated, and could save your life someday.

John Cooper said...

stonemason:

From the article: ...we are seriously considering the possibility that Litvinenko's death could have been connected to the illegal trade in nuclear materials

In my best Carlos Mencia voice: "De-te-deeee... ya' think?

(Disclaimer: Sarcastic comment not directed at you, but the German Polezi"

CalBrindisi said...

John,

I used to help build nuclear power plants, which is how I learned a little about nuclear physics. I still have the rad-protection manuals in my library. Everything I know about nuclear weapons I learned from Tom Clancy novels (grin).

LOL! Thanks. Do you have a suggestion for a good book on "rad protection"-- like something availble on Amazon.com?

Anonymous said...

Sandra:

Wikipedia is biased but the sad thing is that even people who know it is still go there because it's "easy." Then they pick and choose what they want to believe from what they read there. It's a sign of the times. Convenience is more important than reliability.

Sandra said...

Al, you wrote

"Where non-Americans like Soros, Kissinger, Breznewski, Madeleine Albright, run US policy

Here's a winner who should be included in that group:

John Shalikashvili served as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1993 to 1997.

Shalikashvili was born in Warsaw, Poland
and came to the US when he was 16

His father fought FOR the Nazis in WWII as a member of the SS-Waffengruppe Georgien

Shalikashvili was an advisor to John Kerry's campaign for president in 2004.

Shalikashvili quotes:

• "I now believe that if gay men and lesbians served openly in the United States military, they would not undermine the efficacy of the armed forces."

• "When that day comes, gay men and lesbians will no longer have to conceal who they are, and the military will no longer need to sacrifice those whose service it cannot afford to lose."

Anonymous said...

Forgive my ignorance but what are "ess and double-ewes"?????

smithy said...

Forgive my ignorance but what are "ess and double-ewes"?????

It’s code for these:

http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10001&catalogId=11101&categoryId=15701&top=Y

cw-patriot said...

Cal Brindisi,

I worked for a Westinghouse atomic power lab in the early seventies in the Fuel Element Development division -- not at all intimately involved in the design of the reactors, but simply (as a mathematician) in translating the engineers' theoretical ideas into a workable computer program. I did the 'grunt work'. Theirs was the brilliance. :)

John has much more knowledge than I about the physics involved. My very minimal knowledge has come in bits and pieces, through the privilege of working, for a relatively short time, with a few incredible physicists and engineers whose groundbreaking ideas have now become reality.

cw-patriot said...

Elwood Lee,

I will dig out some articles and get back to you soon.

~ joanie

John Cooper said...

A quick internet search came up with a basic (but technical) study guide on nuclear physics Radiation Protection Training Manual & Study Guide

I suspect what you want to learn is more like "how do I protect myself?". There are a bunch of outfits out there that sell radiation monitors and survival equipment. Their websites have some pretty simple-to-understand FAQs.

KI4U, Inc.

Geiger counters and kits

Since human senses can't detect radiation, to protect yourself you first need some way of knowing that it's there. A simple geiger counter will detect a lot of things, but not everything. (It wouldn't have detected Polonium 210, for instance.) It gets expensive to detect everything because you not only need different types of sensors, you need them in different ranges.

Even when you know there's radioactivity in the area, you still don't know what isotops. You need specialized equipment to determine the exact energy spectrum of the radiation in order to determine that.

Once you know it's there, you have to shield yourself from the penetrating types of radiation (gamma), and not injest or inhale any of the airborne particles floating around. For this last, you need a source of HEPA-filtered air and a supply of uncontaminated food and water.

Buying all this stuff would be prohibitively expensive for most of us. If I lived in a city these days, though, I think I'd buy one of those inexpensive keychain rad monitors and carry a simple dust mask with me.

Gee, I'm having fallout shelter flashbacks from the 50s...

calbrindisi said...

John,

Thanks a million. I will check out all 3 links after work tonight and at least start to prepare.

After Joanie gets back to Elwood about what he also asked for I think I'll be ready to face just about anyting. < g >

Seriously- I didn't really know about much of what was discussed here and your posts especially provided a great education. (If you ever need any credit counseling (my area of "expertise") I owe you one. < g >

John Cooper said...

Credit counseling? Dang...The wife and I built our home with our own hands (no mortgage), bought our two vehicles with cash (no car loans), and have managed to pay off all our credit cards.

Thanks for the offer, though.

Al said...

60 MINUTES: POISONED SPY PLANNED TO BLACKMAIL RUSSIAN BUSINESSMAN, SAYS AQUAINTANCE; WIDOW DENIES; FAMILY MONEY WOES REVEALED
Fri Jan 5 2006 12:15:11 ET

Ex-Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko was slowly poisoned to death last November in London and had plenty of time to accuse the Russian president he was so critical of for his demise, effectively declaring himself a political martyr. But he may have angered others who could also want him dead. An acquaintance of Litvinenko tells Bob Simon that he was planning to blackmail a wealthy Russian businessman Ð a charge LitvinenkoÕs widow, Marina, denies Ð before someone slipped him the polonium-210 that caused his slow and painful death. SimonÕs investigation will be broadcast on 60 MINUTES Sunday, Jan. 7 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

Julia Svetlichnaya was a Russian graduate student in London who spoke to Litvinenko about a book she was writing. She says he told her his blackmail plans. "He told meÉheÕs doing a project for blackmailing one of the Russian oligarchsÉin U.K.," she tells Simon. "He thought that it was actually an okay thing to do because this particular person, as Litvinenko claimed, had a connection with... Putin," she says. But Litvinenko's widow says that wasn't her husband, whom she called Sasha. Though she says she didnÕt know what he was up to, "Sasha wasn't a person [who would do that]."

Blackmail didn't surprise Svetlichnaya, however, because Litvinenko used to gather information about people when he was a loyal KGB agent before turning dissident. "He mentioned blackmail in a very casual manner. Every time I met him, he somehow told me he needs money, he needs to make a living, heÕs got children to feed," Svetlichnaya says.

Svetlichnaya would not reveal the blackmail target's name, but said it wasnÕt billionaire Boris Berezovsky, one of the most famous of the exiled Russian businessmen known as oligarchs. Berezovsky says Litvinenko twice saved his life in Russia, once when he disclosed that he had been ordered by the KGB -- then run by Putin -- to assassinate him. The billionaire had been supporting him ever since, saying Litvinenko once worked directly for him. Berezovsky received information he used in a campaign against Putin and his regime from Litvinenko, an effort Berezovsky says he spent $100 million on. He told Simon that he had cut back on his support of the ex-spy in the months prior to his death. He thinks his relationship with Litvinenko was a factor his death. "Unfortunately, I should say yes," Berezovsky tells Simon. He even believes that had Litvinenko not been targeted, it would have been him who was killed.

Berezovsky would not elaborate on who wanted Litvinenko or him dead, but said this about the Russian intelligence agency and President Putin. "[Putin was].. absolutely bandit, from my point of view, yeah, and they...decide to kill [Litvinenko]." When asked by Simon if "they" was Russian intelligence, Berezovsky said he did not want to hurt efforts to investigate the crime, but did say, "I might just use the English joke. If it looks like duck and quack like duck, it means duck."

Marina Litvinenko was more definitive on whether President Putin had a hand in her husband's death. "I can't say it's [Putin's] order, but without his knowledge, it couldn't happen," she tells Simon.

Developing...

http://www.drudgereport.com/flash2.htm

Minuteman23 said...

Do I get a prize for writing the 100th comment? ;)

Anonymous said...

Joanie, thanks so much as always for your response to my post...regarding a couple of comments.

Only recently have I come to believe that the reason that so many theologians have difficulty identifying America’s role in the end times may simply be because America, as we know it, will no longer exist.

I personally believe we shall exist, but that during those momentous and apocalyptic times spoken of in prophecy, America will be involved in precisely the struggle we speak of and will therefore not be in any position to take part in or enfluence those events in the Middle East. We will be too busy fighting here and trying to overcome both our internal and external enemies. Just my opinion on that.

I believe your vision of a small remnant of resolute patriots rising to the challenge and bringing other tens of millions along with them in the hour of need is the stuff of which miracles are made. Which is precisely why we cannot dismiss the possibility. The ultimate question is, will He deem us worthy of such a miracle after so many of us have turned our backs on His teachings?

Given what the Lord God was willing to do for the sake of Sodom and Gomorah if only fifty rightous could be found, I find reason to hope and believe that He will do the same for America for the sake of fifty million or more.

You pray, and believe, He will. I pray He will.

If we both keep praying, and if millions of others join in and continue that prayer, as I know they are, and if we, each in our own spheres of influence act out or lives worthy of such an answer as I know we try to do...then yes, I believe with all my heart that prayer will be heard and answered in the affirmative.

God bless you and yours my friend, in the year ahead and always. You are a great example and inspiration to us all for all of the efforts you have made and continue to make.

~ Jeff

Al said...

Minuteman,

Your prize is a lifetime subscription to the Opera Winfrey magazine.

cw-patriot said...

Jeff, I believe we agree on all major aspects of this issue – especially the most important one: the fact that He is in control. I know you agree with me that we can’t presume to know His will for us, nor should we probably even venture a guess as to something so pure and holy.

We both want the same thing for our beloved republic: We want her to be in good hands again, and we want her to both recognize and acknowledge the hand He has played in our rise to greatness. We want our leaders to stop cow-towing to hedonistic/secular humanist/atheistic forces that for decades have been obsessed with removing any vestige of His presence from our national conscience.

They are winning. We are losing. But He can turn the tide with but a wave of His hand … if he so chooses.

Thank you, as always, for your valuable input, made doubly meaningful because it is inspired by the heart of a patriot.

Best to you and your family in the New Year (especially as you enjoy your newest taste of grandfather-hood. :)

~ joanie

Minuteman23 said...

Your prize is a lifetime subscription to the Opera Winfrey magazine.

Keep it. I’d rather read the back of my shampoo bottle.

Al said...

minuteman,

In leiu (sp) of your comment, your prize has been changed.

You will receive a complete set of Jimmy Carter's published works, including an autographed copy of his latest book.

Minuteman23 said...

In leiu (sp) of your comment, your prize has been changed. You will receive a complete set of Jimmy Carter's published works, including an autographed copy of his latest book.

Good. I'm running low on toilet paper.

Al said...

In that case,

would you prefer a lifetime free subscription to the Washington Post?

Anonymous said...

Western treatment of Russia signifies an erosion of reason
January 9, 2007

http://www.russiaprofile.org/cdi/2007/1/9/5000.wbp

By Vlad Sobell

• The treatment of the murder of Alexander Litvinenko has provided further proof of the bankruptcy of the prevailing Western interpretation of Putin’s Russia. This paper shows that the theory can exist only with the suspense of the standard faculty of rational thinking. For example, President Putin was widely assumed to be guilty without any evidence being considered necessary.
snip

Al said...

Muslims getting slaughtered in Somalia

Revenge for US military from boob Clinton's time

Shows muslims are very beatable

They are cornered like roaches

and wiped out

http://www.nypost.com/seven/01102007/postopinion/opedcolumnists/terrorizing_terrorists_opedcolumnists_ralph_peters.htm

With AC-130 gunships pounding terrorist hide-outs and training sites in the badlands near the Kenyan border, we may have nailed senior al Qaeda figures involved in bombing our embassies in Nairobi and Dar Es Salaam. At the very least, we killed some really bad hombres.

As always, terrorist propagandists will claim that only innocent civilians suffered, and media sympathizers will echo their nonsense. Fortunately, though, most pro-terrorist journalists and "human-rights advocates" are preoccupied just now with the awful mistreatment of poor, misunderstood Saddam Hussein.

And the devastation left behind by our gunships is only part of a very big U.S. win:

* Thanks to resolute military action by Ethiopia's government (quietly backed by Washington), the terror regime in Mogadishu crumbled overnight - collapsing the lie that extremist Islam is on the march to an inevitable victory.

* The speed of the Ethiopian advance cornered hundreds of hardcore Islamist fighters in a forlorn backwater, where they can be killed out of sight of their media defenders. And be killed they will.

* Islamist outrages and subversion inspired unprecedented cooperation between moderate Somalis, Ethiopians, Kenyans and Americans.

For its part, the Kenyan government grew sick of Somalia exporting hatred, weapons and terror. Now Kenyan troops have sealed their border so al Qaeda's agents can't escape.

* Far from being a growing threat - as America-haters insist - al Qaeda's on the run. Confident that they had a new refuge in Somalia, international terrorists instead find themselves scrambling to escape justice.

* Our special-ops forces are getting their revenge: After Army Rangers and Delta Force troops won a hands-down victory in the streets of Mogadishu back in 1993, President Bill Clinton sold them out (as the Pelosi-Reid Democrats threaten to do to our soldiers in Iraq on a greater scale). Now they're killing al Qaeda fanatics and their local allies with the full support of a new Somali government.