Thursday, December 17, 2009

Taliban Wants to Negotiate, Ignored by White House, James Dobson Equates Obama as the Devil

E J Dionne Jr
Dana Milbank
Elizabeth Warren

"When Democrats make deals, they are accused of selling out. When they fail to make deals, they are accused of not reaching out. " - E J Dionne Jr
"Tea parties -- they aren't just for conservatives anymore." - Dana Milbank
"The other night they had that Christmas in Washington holiday special. And you know, people in Washington, right away the bickering started. Lou Dobbs accused Santa of using illegal immigrant labor. Rush Limbaugh said the gifts were part of some kind of socialist give away program. The AFL-CIO claims that Santa underpays his elves, and of course, since it's Washington, you're not going to find three wise men and a virgin. So the whole thing was pretty much a disaster." – Jay Leno

I did not hear this before, that the Afghan Taliban, who have changed their name to Mujahideen, had offered an negotiation to the US State Department, and it has been ignored. The Obama administration hasn't even acknowledged it... "The Taliban offer, included in a statement dated December 4 and e-mailed to news organizations the following day, said the organization had "no agenda of meddling in the internal affairs of other countries and is ready to give legal guarantees if foreign forces withdraw from Afghanistan". The statement did not mention al-Qaeda by name or elaborate on what was meant by "legal guarantees" against such "meddling", but it was an obvious response to past US insistence that the US war in Afghanistan is necessary to prevent al-Qaeda from having a safe haven in Afghanistan once again.

It suggested that the Taliban were interested in negotiating an agreement with the United States involving a public Taliban renunciation of ties with al-Qaeda, along with some undefined arrangements to enforce a ban on al-Qaeda's presence in Afghanistan in return for a commitment to a timetable for withdrawal of foreign troops from the country."

There was only one writer who wrote about this in the Wall Street Journal, and probably no-one took him too seriously because it has become a propaganda arm of Rupert Murdoch. The closest to an official reaction came from Hillary Clinton: "ABC News This Week host George Stephanopoulos asked about possible negotiations with "high level" Taliban leaders, Clinton said, "We don't know yet. We asked [Taliban leader] Mullah Omar to give up bin Laden before he went into Afghanistan after 9/11," Clinton said, "and he wouldn't do it. I don't know why we think he would have changed by now."

I don't know if this is ignorance or arrogance, or a stubborn refusal to let anyone besides the US dictate the terms of any negotiations. Hillary is a hawk, and may prefer a military solution than a diplomatic one. Actually, right before we invaded Afghanistan, I had read that the Taliban had agreed to give up Osama bin Laden, but we ignored their last minute offer and invaded anyway. She probably thinks that we have the Mujahideen on the run and won't negotiate until 18 months from now and we can see how well our surge has worked. Or, the silence may mean that they are intending to keep the option of negotiations open, we don't know if anyone has been in contact with either Mullah Omar or the Haqqani Network...

After getting no response to their offer: "Taliban leadership, which now calls itself "Mujahideen", posted another statement saying that what they called their "proposal" had been rejected by the United States.

The statement said, in part, "Washington turns down the constructive proposal of the leadership of Mujahideen," and repeated its pledge to "ensure that the next government of the Mujahideen will not meddle in the internal affairs of other countries including the neighbors if the foreign troops pull out of Afghanistan."
"A lot of smoke is being thrown up to confuse people." - Bruce Reidel
I think that we are waiting to see how stable the Afghan government and military will become, if it can be a source that the population can come to trust. If not, then negotiations with the Taliban groups, hoping to form a coalition government, kicking out any al Qaeda members, and calling that a victory...

the war in pakistan...
I don't know if it's the Ugly American Syndrome, due to the inherent arrogance of US officials towards poorer countries, or if the Pakistani military and police have decided to harass our officials in the same way they are going after their president, Asif Ali Zardari, exibiting the behavior of a rabid pack of attack weasels: "The campaign includes the refusal to extend or approve visas for more than 100 American officials and the frequent searches of American diplomatic vehicles in major cities, said an American official briefed on the cases.

The problems affected military attach├ęs, C.I.A. officers, development experts, junior level diplomats and others, a senior American diplomat said. As a result, some American aid programs to Pakistan, which President Obama has called a critical ally, are “grinding to a halt,” the diplomat said."

In a war of quotes, first the anonymous American diplomat says; “They don’t want more Americans here, they’re not sure what the Americans are doing. It’s pretty pervasive.” And we have stopped reimbursing them money for counterintelligence and stopped using our helicopters because the mechanics for them can't get their visas renewed...

In response: “Unfortunately, the Americans are arrogant,” the Pakistani security official said. “They think of themselves as omnipotent. That’s how they come across.”

The US wants to up their embassy personnel from 500 to 800, the better to administer the money we are giving them. That's a lot of CIA officers, and doesn't include private contractors, which is at least half again as many people. I wonder how many extra people we have beefed up in our embassies in countries throughout the area. If we are looking to curb government excess in spending, we could do it right here...

the devil's in the details...
I'm beginning to think that we need to get rid of all of the Senate, these guys can't seem to legislate their way out of a paper bag... Actually, with the health care debate, they are using a plastic bag and are suffocating any good that could ever come out of it. I'm pretty burned out watching it all unfold in the news, what might make it exciting is if there was a car chase after Joe Lieberman at high speed on some turnpike, he could be our political OJ...

Probably the creepiest thing to date, or the most pathetic, depending on your world view, is last night's pray-a-thon, held by the Family Research Council: "The event was an excellent display of the theocratic right -- that is, for the literal institution of religious doctrines in public policy, and appeals to the Deity for active direction and intervention in politics.

As I reported last night, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins began the evening with a false statement, confidently saying that history records the Founding Fathers praying for God's intervention at the Constitutional Convention. (They did not pray, mainly due to the financial inability to get a chaplain, as well as the political pitfall that even seeking a chaplain would alert the public to their internal dissensions.)

Co-host Lou Engle focused the event as a protest against abortion, alleging that the bill would result in government funding and promoting it, and likening their prayers to Biblical figures who worked to stop the genocide of the Jews" Eeewww! Such bad taste, and trying to promote themselves as being as important as Biblical figures, the height of misguided arrogance! And why do they always have to bring in the Jews and genocide on this, let them make statements on their own...

And to prove that its founder, James Dobson, may be slipping into the senility of Lou Dobbs Disease, more commonly known as Alzheimer's, my neighbor called up on the phone and: "... offering a prayer and seeming to tie the health care bill and the country's overall political direction to none other than the Devil: "I just pray that You will frustrate the plans of the Evil One, and revive us again with conviction and forgiveness. Show us how we can further your cause, Lord and advance your kingdom, and we will be careful to give you the praise. Just begin a revival in our hearts that will restore us as one nation under God." I know that Dobson finally caved in and supported McCain over Obama, but is he likening Obama to the Devil, and therefore committing blasphemy by equating John McCain as Jesus Christ? Jimbo, I think sitting alone in the snow here in Colorado has done something to you, and it's not good...

The creepy part for me is that we have political figures using the Bible as a front for their political views, twisting a strange conservative Christianity into a form of legislative righteousness. It is an abomination, and really not very Christian at all. Where's the love and tolerance? I hope that one of their prayers will actually bounce back and they will experience it tonight:
"Lord, break into their hearts while they sleep tonight."


  1. HEAR YE! O HEAR YE!! Just wanna let youse know having a BIG-OL party on my drawbridge in Heaven after my demise. So, why don't you meet me Upstairs for a beer where you can bitch at me as we play thumb wars! Kick-ass, huh? God blessa youse.

  2. Wow, there's beer in Heaven? Is the God of Beer related to the one we must sacrifice our socks to every time we use the dryer?

    Ya know, another good friend passed away lately, and I bought a bottle of Jameson and went to his grave to hold a wake. Clancy, I said, this bottle is for you in memory of the times we had together. But I'm wondering if you don't mind if I filter it through my body first...


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