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  • Archive for November, 2004

    Spirit of America

    Posted by Jonathan on 30th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Chicago Boyz has signed up with the Spirit of America, a worthy cause if there ever was one. Spirit of America provides resources to Americans serving in Iraq and Afghanistan who have organized a number of helpful projects. Read more at the Spirit of America website, or click here or on the “FRIENDS OF IRAQ” graphic to donate through this blog.

    Posted in Iraq | 1 Comment »

    The Life of Joe Republican

    Posted by ken on 29th November 2004 (All posts by )

    It seems the tale of Joe Republican is making the rounds, telling us about all the wonderful things that Joe takes for granted that were provided by the leftists that he despises.

    And what lesson do we learn from this, boys and girls? We learn that the Big Lie works, and that if you keep it up long enough, a century down the road your 100% Grade A Bullshit will be taught as History with a capital “H”.

    So let’s take a look at Joe’s life and the wonders that our friends on the left have brought to him…
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in Uncategorized | 11 Comments »

    A Different Specter is Haunting Europe

    Posted by Mitch Townsend on 28th November 2004 (All posts by )

    The election in Ukraine is getting more attention as Kuchma’s hand-picked successor, Victor Yanukovych, is rejected by the populace. Putin was quick to embrace Yanukovych, who is considered pro-Russian (Ukraine has a large Russian ethnic minority in its eastern region). The opposition candidate, Victor Yushenko, was apparently denied a victory by widespread fraud. With no expertise but a great deal of sympathy, let us refer you to others with more insight.

    On the scene:

    Tulipgirl
    Le sabot post-moderne
    Maidan
    Orange Ukraine

    On the Case:

    The Argus specializes in Central Asia and the Causasus.
    A Fistful of Euros is a general interest group blog on Europe, center-left politically (by US standards), that has been following events in Ukraine.
    SCSU Scholars has been devoting most of its space to the election in Ukraine. Comprehensive and well-presented.

    Posted in Europe | 1 Comment »

    Tom Hayden Reminds Us What Really Matters (to the Left)

    Posted by Jonathan on 28th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Via Instapundit comes a link to Hayden’s advice on how to get the U.S. to abandon Iraq.

    Hayden doesn’t actually use the term “abandon Iraq” — his essay is titled, “How to End the Iraq War” — but his meaning is clear to anyone who knows the code. For everyone else there’s this paragraph, which removes any doubt:

    The important thing is for anti-war activists to become more grounded in the everyday political life of their districts, organizing anti-war coalitions including clergy, labor and inner city representatives to knock loudly on congressional doors and demand that the $200 billion squandered on Iraq go to infrastructure and schools at home. When trapped between imperial elites and their own insistent constituents, members of Congress will tend to side with their voters. That is how the wars in Vietnam and Cambodia were ended in 1975.

    Got that? What happened in South Vietnam and Cambodia — concentration camps, boat people, genocide, continued war — after the U.S. cut and ran is of no importance. The fact that the post-war horrors might have been averted if the Congress, empowered by the post-Watergate Democratic landslide in the 1974 elections, hadn’t denied further aid to South Vietnam, is of no importance. All that matters is that our war ended, and that people like Hayden helped to thwart U.S. policy. High five, dude! What a great victory for the cause.

    In Hayden’s view it’s always about the U.S., because the Left sees the U.S. as a destructive force in international affairs. If only U.S. actions were blocked, then things would be better. Needless to say, the only way to hold such a view over a long period of time is to ignore most of what happens in the rest of the world. But hey, movement politics are so much more interesting and meaningful than world history.

    Remember that, the next time some lefty panjandrum dispenses political advice or tells Americans that they don’t care enough about what happens in other countries.

    Posted in Politics | 20 Comments »

    Where Glenn Reynolds Really Spent Thanksgiving

    Posted by Jonathan on 25th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Any fool can see that the Thanksgiving photo on his blog is fake. I mean, just look at that ridiculous background and tell me it wasn’t photoshopped in. It’s just too obvious.

    Here’s where he really was:

    Instapundit in Iraq

    On a more serious note, though not an unrelated one: I am especially thankful this year for the courage and dedication of the members of our armed forces. Thank you all very much for your service.

    (Original Army photo: here.)

    Posted in Humor | 4 Comments »

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Posted by In-Cog-Nito on 25th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »

    Havel & the UN

    Posted by Ginny on 23rd November 2004 (All posts by )

    Instapundit has a remarkable vision: Vaclav Havel in Kofi Annan’s place.

    Update:Chris Muir’s has returned and his Dec. 6th is on Havel (and Annan). (The link doesn’t seem to work; but our sympathy and thanks go to Mr. Muir, who has made many a moment happier.)

    Update: Primary sources: Havel’s op-ed, Havel’s Taiwanese speech, Palous’s column.

    Update: In another news story, Havel demonstrates that he certainly isn’t “campaigning” for the post and it also reveals his – it seems to me quite transparent and honest – perspective. (Or that to use Gerwitz’s point and Peggy Noonan’s words – he “has two of them”.) His respect for others is clearly not determined by power – in his op-ed, he takes those to task who would blame our hyper-power for their problems and here he declares his respect for the vulnerable. (More on both stories below)

    Some people mistake bravery for standing up to a relatively benign management; others look at each situation and determine responsibility and solutions. The former are not brave; they are irresponsible and passive. Havel doesn’t make that mistake because he doesn’t take a perspective that concerns power as much as truth nor complaints as much as solutions.

    Further update: The Czechs, aware of the similarity between Castro’s government and the one they knew quite well, are taking a stand on the EU reconsideration of ambassadorial sanctuary; see the WSJ column by ambassador Martin Palous. A former dissident in the Velvet Revolution, he presented the 1999 resolution condemning the Castro regime at the meeting of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights in Geneva. He argues

    Precisely because we lived a communist dictatorship and saw firsthand how totalitarian mechanisms worked to crush the spirit and the foundations of moral structures, we feel the obligation to speak up on behalf of the brave Cuban people. We know well their situation of being harassed, blackmailed, ridiculed, persecuted and jailed. From our own experience we also know the crucial importance of international pressure to the dissident struggle.

    See Palous in a recent Texas visit.

    Further Update: Nov. 29: Reynold’s editorial for WSJ.

    Further Update: Dec. 1: Prompted by Rummel, checked out Diplomad. Entry on the UN by these saavy State Dept. types. It does, of course, take the attitude toward the UN of most of the commentators.

    Meanwhile, however, bumperstickers have arrived (at a site with many links to other enthusiasts).

    Havel’s eloquence both in his op-ed on the United Nations role and in Taiwan are excerpted in the extended entry:
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in International Affairs | 11 Comments »

    Waste of my Time

    Posted by James R. Rummel on 23rd November 2004 (All posts by )

    There’s some sort of conference going on in Egypt right now. It’s supposed to be all about Iraq and nothing but. Predictably, though, the subject of Israel and the Palestinians was the only thing anyone wanted to talk about.

    That’s what you get when you invite Arab dignitaries to any sort of “international conference.” They’ll start spouting off about Israel so no one will ask them about their own governments’ failings. We’ve seen it happen at the United Nations so many times that I doubt any of the delegates have written a new speech in 20 years.

    France sent along envoys to the do, whuppty-freakin’-ding-dong. It’s not like they’ve been really supportive of our efforts in Iraq, or that they’ve even refrained from trying anything they could think of to stop us. The only thing that the presence of French delegates at the conference tells me is that the buffets in the executive dining hall must have been pretty well stocked.

    Now France says that they want to help end violence in Iraq. A reasonable person would think that they’d send troops, help pay for efforts to hunt down terrorists, start pressuring Syria and Iran in order to slow down the flow of support for terrorism. I mean, what else would make a difference?

    But France isn’t talking about doing any of that. Instead they want the Iraqi interim government to hold a big rally with the various political groups forming in Iraq. It would help voter turnout, they said. (They just say “meetings,” but I figure that you should do it right and have a big ol’ political rally with vendors selling T-shirts and overpriced convention food and rousing speeches and everything.)

    Thank a lot, France! Democracy is saved due to your quick thinking and keen insight into the problem of forming new liberal democracies! After all, they have all that experience in forming democracies. They’re on their, what, 5th or 6th democratic government since the late 18th Century while we’re struggling along with the original?

    Next time they should just have McDonald’s cater these affairs. I bet it would increase the signal-to-noise ratio something fierce.

    Posted in France | 13 Comments »

    Quote of the Day

    Posted by Jonathan on 23rd November 2004 (All posts by )

    In an era of general acceptance of deregulation and privatization, Mr. Spitzer has introduced the world to yet a new form of regulation, the use of the criminal law as an in terrorem weapon to force acceptance of industry-wide regulations. These rules are not vetted through normal authoritative channels, are not reviewable by any administrative process, and are not subject to even the minimal due-process requirements our courts require for normal administrative rule making. The whole process bears no resemblance to a rule of law; it is a reign of force. And to make matters worse, the regulatory remedies are usually vastly more costly to the public than the alleged evils.

    -George Mason law school dean emeritus Henry Manne

    Posted in Economics & Finance | Comments Off

    Empathy

    Posted by James R. Rummel on 22nd November 2004 (All posts by )

    A reader left a comment and a link at this post, where I talk about how a friend of mine named Charles is dying of cancer after an active life spent as a sportsman. The link was to this news story, which talks about an incident where a man wearing hunting gear was asked to leave private land. The trespasser opened fire on the owner and his guests who were there at the time. 5 people are dead, and three others are wounded.

    What did my anonymous reader want to say about this terrible act of murder?

    “I say give ´em all the guns they want.”

    I’ve seen this attitude before, most recently amongst supporters of England’s ban on fox hunting. The rhetoric can get pretty thick, with people who want to ban hunting comparing it to rape or serial killing. When innocent human beings are murdered while taking part in the sport, they can’t help but let their satisfaction show through childish gloating.

    Considering the post where he left his comment, the only thing I can say is that my reader is very wise to remain nameless. I’m sure that he would come up 2nd best if compared to Charles in any way, and no one wants to be humiliated.

    Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

    “Iraq election may yet be postponed”

    Posted by Jonathan on 22nd November 2004 (All posts by )

    So say the foreign ministers of Egypt and Jordan (via Drudge). Sounds like wishful thinking on their part.

    Given who the messengers are, the message I am taking from all this is that the sooner Iraq holds elections, the better. The worst thing we could do would be to reward terrorists and non-democratic Arab regimes by postponing the election. It would be nice if Iraq could even advance the scheduled date, just to make its enemies squirm. For dictatorships, violence is just another business tool but elections are terrifying.

    Bring on the elections in Iraq and elsewhere.

    Posted in Iraq | 4 Comments »

    Privacy? What’s that?

    Posted by Jonathan on 22nd November 2004 (All posts by )

    BellSouth’s DSL availability page will display the street address associated with any phone number that you enter, even if that number is unpublished or unlisted. I tried it with an unlisted number and it returned accurate information. How did I find out about this useful service? Someone who works for an ISP told me. I suspect it’s common knowledge among people who need to track down owners of unlisted numbers. It may be that this information is already available for purchase from data vendors, but if the phone company is giving it away it raises a number of concerns — privacy, of course, as well as questions about what exactly unlisted customers are paying extra for. It should be obvious that merely hiding the name on the account is of little value if the address is public.

    So was this a programming oversight or does BellSouth really want to make all of its customers’ addresses public?

    Posted in Privacy | 4 Comments »

    Defund NASA

    Posted by In-Cog-Nito on 21st November 2004 (All posts by )

    Here’s a good article by Paul Jacob on the merits of defunding NASA, and allowing private enterprise to lead the charge into space.

    Americans and scientists and the current space industry must wean themselves from the idea of subsidy — a point I often make, of other industries, in my Common Sense e-letter. No matter how expertly NASA charges corporations for its services, such as satellite placement and repair, the very existence of a government-funded service bureau introduces a corrupting element into the industry.

    Private enterprise can bloom in space. But only by getting NASA and government subsidies out.

    Update: Ken made an excellent point in the comments. I was reponding, but I’ll respond here.

    The free market has a record of innovation, lowering cost, and improving quality, particularly so in the high tech/high science industry. Government can and should piggy back off the private sector.

    You would be surprised what private enterprise will fund. For example, say launch costs for putting heavy loads into space are cut to the point of commodity. Then the variable cost of the high-end research is diminished more or less to the research itself. Even that would probably benefit from privatization. Some company out there will want to look into Magnetic Sail Plasma Beam Propulsion. VC funded startups would want to patent it. Skunk works for the big defense companies would be the candidates with the infrastructure and knowledge base to support it. Letting a VC funded startup shoulder the cost for an expensive bleeding edge technology has historically been a very successful model. For that one startup that figures it out, the payoff would be, literally, astronomical. The other 99% of VC funded startups may be complete duds/write-offs. But that payoff is exactly what VC’s are gunning for. Say I am Kleiner Perkins. I would set aside $100 million, find 10 companies showing the most promise in space propulsion and put $10 million into each. If there aren’t any companies, I would incubate them (KPCB has an in-house entrepreneur program iirc) I would then syndicate the companies to where I own about 20% of each company to lessen the risk, and the companies would get more money to work with. So each company would get about $50 million in funding. If even one company does hit it big, that $10 million is going to be worth a lot more than $100 million. What’s high end space propulsion worth? If they had a lock on Magnetic Sail Plasma Beam Propulsion, I would value it in the public markets to the tune of $5 to $10 billion. 20% of $5 billion is $1 billion, for a 10 fold return on the original investment of $100 million. Bingo, science fiction becomes reality, and we have a new propulsion system.

    It’s one scenario. But my main point is that government has a lackluster track record for innovation. They tend to play it safe when it comes to being a catalyst for major change. So why not let the profit-driven private sector do it? It may not seem as “noble” as the pure pursuit of science, but it has a knack of getting the job done.

    Posted in Space | 9 Comments »

    Reality Check

    Posted by James R. Rummel on 21st November 2004 (All posts by )

    The problem I have with many people who advocate Liberal agendas is that they insists that they’re the most moral, caring people. That’s all fine and dandy, but you have to pay for care.

    Case in point is Tennessee’s managed health care system, Tenncare. It was started 10 years ago when the state faced a budget crisis. Back then they were facing a $250 million shortfall in their budget, mainly due to runaway health care costs. So they decided to fix the problem by expanding the medical programs.

    Sounds rather backwards, doesn’t it? But the plan was to screw over the Federal government since the Feds provide matching funds for Medicaid and Medicare. By enrolling thousands of the uninsured, proponents figured that they’d have the money rolling in toot sweet.

    Well, the obvious happened. The program very quickly spiralled out of control, which is completely predictable. The cracks started to show as quickly as 5 years ago, with costs and corruption rampant. Even so, supporters tried to say that it was a success since the patients who benefitted the most from the program said that they were satisfied. (Give me something for free and see how much I complain.)

    Tenncare popped up in the news earlier this year with the Canadian drug scandal. It seemed that Tennessee was getting desperate to reduce costs or find some funds.

    Now it’s really gone off the rails. The program is costing $7.8 billion a year!!! And this is in a state without any income tax.

    Reforms are being discussed but they seem very weak to me. It looks like about 430K people will have to be dropped from the rolls, and something tells me that this is just the start.

    I don’t think a whole lot will be done before it’s a complete disaster. Everything I read about the program talks about how caring and moral it is, even though it will probably drive the state to the verge of bankruptcy and leave hundreds of thousands without any health care at all.

    Posted in Uncategorized | 9 Comments »

    Strong Tank

    Posted by In-Cog-Nito on 21st November 2004 (All posts by )

    I’ve been a fan of the Army’s M1 Abrams tank since I was a kid. Most kids were reading comic books or baseball magazines; I was reading about U.S. and Soviet tank designs (I was a strange kid). Here’s an interesting site with pictures titled “M1A1 Abrams Lessons Learned During Iraq War 2003”. Here is the original powerpoint. One interesting outtake was the destruction of an abandoned M1 to not compromise the vehicle and/or technology. According to them it:

    “Took one thermite grenade, one sabot in turret ammunition compartment, and two Maverick missiles to finally destroy the tank”.

    Strong tank.

    Update: The armor on the M1 is Chobham armor. Here is a brief description of it from Wikipedia.org:

    “Chobham armour is a composite armour developed at the British tank research centre on Chobham Common. Although the exact composition of Chobham armour remains a secret, it appears to be a combination of ceramic layered between armour steel plating, a combination that is excellent at defeating high explosive anti-tank (HEAT) rounds. Possible ceramics for such armours are: Boron carbide, Silicon carbide, Aluminium oxide (Sapphire), or Titanium boride.

    The exact nature of the protection offered by this layering remained a mystery for some time, but it was eventually revealed that Chobham armour works in a manner somewhat similar to reactive armour. When the armour is hit by a HEAT round the ceramic layer shatters under the impact point, forming a dust under high pressure. When the HEAT round “burns through” the outer layers of armour and reaches the ceramic, the dust comes flying back out the hole, slowing the jet of metal.

    Modern tanks also have to face KE-penetrator rounds of various sorts, which the ceramic layer is not particularly effective against. For this reason many modern designs include additional layers of heavy metals to add more density to the overall armor package. The metal used appears to be either tungsten or, in the case of later M1 Abrams tanks, depleted uranium.

    The effectiveness of Chobham armour was demonstrated in the first Gulf War, where no Coalition tank was destroyed by the obsolete Iraqi armor. In some cases the tanks in question were subject to multiple point-blank hits by both KE-penetrators and HEAT rounds, but the old Russian ammunition used by the Iraqis, in their Polish licence built T-72′s, their old T-55′s bought from Russia and upgraded with “enigma” type armour, and T-62 tanks left them completely incapable of penetrating coalition armour. It’s also worth noting that the Iraqis rarely actually hit the coalition tanks, because of lack of training and inferior optics. To date, only 5-10 Chobham-protected tanks have been defeated by enemy fire in combat, including an M1 that was hit by an RPG-7 in the Second Gulf War; no crewmembers of either the M1 or Britain’s Challenger II have been killed as a result of armour penetration.

    The latest version of Chobham armour is used on the Challenger II (called Dorchester armour), and (though the composition most probably differs) the M1 Abrams series of tanks. Though it is often claimed to be otherwise, the Leopard II does not in fact use Chobham armour.”

    Posted in Military Affairs | 18 Comments »

    New Photos

    Posted by Jonathan on 20th November 2004 (All posts by )

    A steaming plate (pile?) of fresh pixels is now being served at the photoblog.

    Posted in Announcements | 5 Comments »

    The War On Christmas

    Posted by Michael Hiteshew on 19th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Secular extremists are on the warpath again and the location of this year’s pogrom is Maplewood, New Jersey. The battleground, as usual, is the school. The object of their contempt: Christmas. Just for starters, it’s no longer to be referred to as Christmas. Can’t have that. It’s now to be referred to as a “holiday season”. How inclusive.

    Schools planning “holiday season” programs have been instructed to not include any icons or images in their pamphlets or concert programs that might be construed as religious symbols; for example, Christmas trees or dreidels. That might be offensive to someone and might also be construed as promoting a particular religion. Children are so impressionable, you know. And sensitive to the mere mentioning of religions to which they may not belong.

    I can’t resist stopping for one brief second to point out that the word holiday is merely a contraction of the words holy day. Clearly the secular extremists aren’t paying close enough attention to details. If you’re going to wage a proper pogrom, at least be creative enough to invent some Orwellian euphemism with which to replace the nasty, unprogressive words “Christmas season”. Referring to holy days clearly won’t do.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in Morality and Philosphy | 35 Comments »

    Blues and Guns

    Posted by Shannon Love on 19th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Via Instapundit comes an article in Slate which I find unintentionally hilarious. The really funny part occurs at the very end.

    “Is there something you’ve always wanted to do but were too scared or embarrassed to try? Ask the Human Guinea Pig to do it for you.”

    So what was the wild, dangerous thing that some reader sent the “Human Guinea Pig” out to do?

    She went to fire a gun at a shooting range.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments »

    Inflation? What Inflation?

    Posted by Jonathan on 19th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Nothing to see here, folks. Move along.

    Posted in Economics & Finance | 30 Comments »

    Caroll: Darwin, Dickens & Pinker

    Posted by Ginny on 19th November 2004 (All posts by )

    For that niche audience out there interested in the application of evolutionary psychology to lit crit, Joseph Caroll’s book, Literary Darwinism: Evolution, Human Nature, and Literature, is out and given a lengthy positive review by Denis Dutton: “The Pleasures of Fiction” in Philosophy and Literature and, of course, on A&L.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in Arts & Letters | Comments Off

    “Iraq Exit Strategy”

    Posted by Jonathan on 18th November 2004 (All posts by )

    This guy has the right idea.

    Posted in Iraq | 6 Comments »

    A Bush economic plan I can get excited about

    Posted by ken on 18th November 2004 (All posts by )

    It looks like Bush is set to push for more changes in the tax code, and he’s including some features that would make me a big fan if they stay in.

    The biggest one will do much to solve the “health care crisis” – it will eliminate the deduction that businesses currently get for offering company health plans.

    Why is this a good thing? Am I actually cheering a tax hike?

    Not exactly. There’ll be lower individual as well as corporate tax rates, and the plan is supposed to be revenue-neutral overall. But having employers “provide” health plans is decidedly inferior to having the employees buy their own plans, which is what seems likely to take place if this tax break finally, at long last, goes away. The market for health insurance will work better if insurance companies are competing to please the actual policyholders, rather than their employers. The current practice of having everyone in a given company charged the same rate regardless of risk factors is a strong incentive for companies to practice age discrimination and reject less healthy people, and removes an incentive that individuals would otherwise have to take cost into account when consuming health care and to keep themselves healthy.

    Other changes include elimination of double-taxation on corporate profits and an expansion of tax-free savings accounts, also eminently sensible moves.

    With expanded Republican representation in Congress, this should all have an easier time passing. And it hasn’t been wise in the past to bet against Bush getting his way when he really pushes for something.

    (Thanks to QandO for the link)

    Posted in Uncategorized | 26 Comments »

    Right-wing Bush Administration censorship

    Posted by ken on 18th November 2004 (All posts by )

    The right-wing socially conservative Bush Administration has ordered a sexually suggestive commercial off the air.

    Our friends on the left will be up in arms any minute now about this latest infringement on the First Amendment rights we all hold so dear, right?

    Right?

    Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments »

    A Matter of Perspective Pt II: The Hatfields, the McCoys, and the Mafia

    Posted by James R. Rummel on 17th November 2004 (All posts by )

    In Part One I discussed how comparing the Iraqi situation with that in Afghanistan wasn’t a good idea. The main advantage that Afganistan has over Iraq is that, while both countries are oriented towards a tribal culture, there’s a greater variety of ethnic groups that allow the people there to overcome this mindset.

    But what the heck do I mean by “tribal,” anyway? And why is it so significant?
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in History | 1 Comment »

    A Matter of Perspective Pt I: Apples and Oranges

    Posted by James R. Rummel on 17th November 2004 (All posts by )

    Fellow Chicago Boy Michael Hiteshew has written a post where he discusses his doubts about a victory in Iraq. He feels that the terrorists have gained ground, and might be winning no matter how the US tries to stop them. He correctly points out that neither side can hope to win unless they enjoy the support of the general population.

    “There is no possible way for 150,000 troops to control a country of 28 million without the active support of its inhabitants. And don’t tell me about the British Empire. This is not 1850. Today, support can stream in from across the globe to supply weapons and fighters to a guerrilla insurgency allowing them to wreak havoc for decades.”

    Michael also compares the situation to the relative success in Afghanistan.

    “Why isn’t this happening in Afghanistan? Quite simply because there’s no support for it. For starters, twenty years of civil war have simply worn them out. More importantly, in Afghanistan, by contrast with Iraq, the war was led by Afghanis, with the US merely supplying the overwhelming firepower when needed. Finally, the international community, much as it pains many Americans to admit it, provided the necessary political framework for the war to succeed, from the political meetings held in Bonn, Germany, to the active help of neighboring countries like Russia, Uzbekistan and Pakistan. All of which are missing in Iraq.”

    I’ve noticed that most people are rather vague when they discuss their misgivings about the situation in Iraq. They know that it’s not going the way they hoped but they have very few ideas as to why, or what can be done to correct it. This is understandable when one considers that they don’t have a very firm background when it comes to Iraqi culture or history. I’m hardly an expert myself, but I do have a keen interest in the history part of it, and I’ve been reading up.

    First off, people here in the West love to compare Afghanistan to Iraq. And why shouldn’t they? After all, both countries are rugged and lacking in water. Both countries were recently suffering under despotic regimes. And both countries are predominantly Islamic. They’re practically the same, right?

    Not at all, and it’s important to keep in mind that the differences are more significant than the simularities.
    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in History | 3 Comments »