Wednesday, November 23, 2005

"You grab peace and don't let go"

Wally e-mailed me to wonder if I thought "Wednesday" would count if he posted early this morning? I do. But I had forgotten about the time change.

I did take a nap after I got off the flight. But I forgot in terms of posting that although it wouldn't be midnight where I was, for people who might check this site, it might be "Wednesday" when I posted.

This is my Tuesday post. It's still Tuesday where I am.

"Hillary, You're Not Listening" (Jeff Cohen, The Huffington Post):
"Part of my job is being a good listener," Hillary Clinton wrote, in the first line of her letter received today. As a New Yorker, I'm represented by Hillary in the U.S. Senate. Along with her two-page fundraising letter, I received a four-page "2005 Critical National Issues Survey."
But something was missing -- something Hillary obviously doesn't want to hear about: IRAQ.
Nowhere in the letter or the questionnaire was that four-letter word.
Hillary's first question asked me to rank nine issues in their "order of importance." Iraq wasn't on the list. Nor was there a place I could add an issue she'd somehow forgotten about.
The problem is she hadn't forgotten the war. She simply doesn't want to hear about one of the biggest issues dividing our country, draining the federal budget, destabilizing the Middle East, undermining international law and institutions, and spreading fear and hatred of our country.
When national polls show that 54% or more of Americans want our troops withdrawn promptly from Iraq, and 60% believe it was a mistake to have sent troops in the first place, imagine how huge the majorities are for those propositions in Hillary's home state of New York.

I agree with Cohen completely. It reminded me of Ava & C.I.'s TV review.

"TV Review: Commander-in-Chief aka The Nah-Nah Sisterhood" (Ava & C.I., The Third Estate Sunday Review):
What really frightens us, besides the fact that a backlash only takes root when people who should know better applaud this junk, is an elitist attitude that seems to greet this show."We got our woman president!"
Consider us too grass-rooty but we don't see that as an end all be all. We weren't among the ones saying "At least we still got Martin Sheen on TV" so maybe we're missing it. But honestly, we'll take an Alice over a Commander-in-Chief. Give us working class women who pull together over a queen bee living a rarified life.We've never doubted that a woman could be president (and at some point will be). But we've never assumed that gender would be an answer. A woman who supports equality? Absolutely, that's a great thing. A woman who makes her way as an exception, backs up an agenda she doesn't believe in and does nothing to help other women? We don't see the point in applauding that.
It's a pertinent issue as two women are repeatedly named as potential candidates in the real world: Condi Rice and Hillary Clinton. If either woman (or both) runs, will we get the same giddy "It's a woman!" nonsense? Under no circumstance would either of us vote for Rice. We'd be reluctant to vote for Clinton considering her waffles on the issue of choice and her stance on the war. But will those issues be silenced in the giddy cry of, "It's a woman! It's a first!"
That's troubling.

I had a pretty easy flight. After the flight, I took a shower and a nap. So it really doesn't seem as late to me as it should. To me, it's still Tuesday.

I'm not sure if I noted this from Mike last night or not: "The community is important and the community is important to me. So I'll do my part for the community."

As everyone who comes to this site knows, Mike and I go over the same headline stories from Democracy Now! each day. So check Mikey Likes It! for Mike's take.

Iraqi Leaders Call for Troop Withdrawal Timetable (Democracy Now!)
In Iraq, Shiite, Kurdish and Sunni leaders have issued a joint communiqué calling for a timetable for the withdrawal of U.S troops. The New York Times reports this marks the first time Iraq's political factions collectively called for a withdrawal timetable. The communiqué was released during a reconciliation conference held under the auspices of the Arab League. Attendees included Iraqi president Jalal Talabani. The leaders also condemned attacks on Iraqi civilians, government institutions and oil installations, and called for the release of all detainees held without trial. They said Iraq's opposition had a "legitimate right" of resistance but condemned terrorism and acts of violence, murder and kidnapping.

They want us out. That's not a surprise to anyone who's paid attention. This has been addressed many times before. It just doesn't seem to get addressed seriously by the press. I know many people who are unaware of it and won't believe it when I tell them. Less so in the last few months. But there's this idea that we're "helping." We're not helping with the public services being restored (after over two years). We're not helping with the "peace." The only thing we're doing is inflaming tensions. The troops need to come home now.

Pentagon Docs: White Phosphorous Is A Chemical Weapon (Democracy Now!):
New evidence has emerged that the U.S. military used chemical weapons during the assault on Fallujah a year ago. Last week the Pentagon confirmed for the first time that it used white phosphorous as a weapon to attack Iraqi fighters. But the Pentagon rejected claims that white phosphorous is a chemical weapon. White Phosphorous is often compared to napalm because it combusts spontaneously when exposed to oxygen and can burn right through skin to the bone. While the Pentagon is denying white phosphorous is a chemical weapon, a newly uncovered Defense Department document, reveals that is just how the military described it when Saddam Hussein allegedly used it a decade ago. A declassified 1995 Pentagon intelligence document reads QUOTE "Iraqi forces loyal to president Saddam may have possibly used white phosphorous chemical weapons against Kurdish rebels." Meanwhile a British commander has admitted that he trained his troops in using white phosphorus as a weapon. Until now the British government has maintained it used white phosphorous but only for tactical purposes.

The New York Timid, and Scott Shane, had an article in Monday's paper that should embarrass the paper and Shane. In it, they alleged that it wasn't a weapon based upon . . . the military stating it wasn't. To them. Documents prove otherwise, as do treaties. The paper of record should be embarrassed.

I'm staying at C.I.'s for Thanksgiving and, no, we didn't watch Nightline. If you did and for some reason are feeling down, check out C.I.'s "The end of a (bad) era."

"Peace Quote" (via passenger seated next to me on the plane):
You grab peace and don't let go. People try to stomp it out. You have to clutch it to your heart and soul, give life to it with your every breath.