“My friends, we must present the situation in the clearest possible way: We won’t lend a hand to the establishment of a Palestinian state west of the Jordan River... A clear message to the whole world should be sent from here. We must vote as one in favor of the draft resolution against a Palestinian state.” - Benjamin Netanyahu
"As long as between the Jordan and the [Mediterranean] sea there is only one political entity, named Israel, it will end up being either non-Jewish or non-democratic. Without an agreement, we will be subject to international isolation, and we will suffer a fate similar to that of Belfast or Bosnia, or a gradual transition from a paradigm of two states for two peoples to one of one state for two peoples, and some people will try to label us as similar to South Africa.” - Ehud Barak
The quotes above are from Reza Aslan's opinion piece, where he calls for George Mitchell to be replaced with Bill Clinton. I agree that Bill might be more effective, because so far we've wasted 30 years of negotiating, and the Likud Party will never willingly agree to any form of Palestinian state. But Bill hasn't done much for the people of Haiti as their special envoy. In fact, it seems as if the world has gone on and forgotten Haiti. There never was enough aid and food to help all of those who needed it, most of the first responder countries have packed up their hospitals and left folks to fend and die on their own... The plight of native peoples is getting worse, especially in Africa, where the cases of AIDS has risen over 2000%. The country of Uganda would rather buy $300 million Russian made jets than save the lives of its own people... Anyway, if these proximity talks don't work and things fall apart. look to some kind of war or major Palestinian uprising during this upcoming long, hot Summer... when we all get a little bitchy and mean.
So, both Great Britain and Iraq have had elections resulting in a stalemate, and as a result, its taking months to resolve the situation. Let's hope that the people in Britain don't go feral and start suicide bombing the shit out of their country in a pique of self-destruction. Of course, Nuri Maliki will never step aside to help the process like Gordon Brown just did. On the self esteem scale, Iraq is pretty low...
Hamid Karzai is coming to Washington DC. Oh, ours has been a rocky relationship between the Overlords of American Military and the Minions of Heroin and Corruption, here's hoping that Hamid will be treated as a respected head of state. It will go a long way to promote some goodwill in an area born of mistrust: "Mutual suspicions have marked the relationship between Mr. Karzai and President Obama – at least since the Afghan leader’s trouble-pocked reelection last year. Obama has fumed over an unaccountable leader who has done little to stem rampant corruption, while Karzai has blasted an arrogant foreign presence in his country, going so far as to recently charge the US with seeking a “servant government” from the Afghans." The official government gobbldegook is pretty clever, by not calling it a relationship but a partnership: “The nature of strategic partnerships like the one between the United States and Afghanistan [is that] they feature ups and downs. But the difference between a mere relationship and a partnership like the one [with Afghanistan] is that partnerships endure the ups and downs and continue to press forward towards the common goals on which the partnership is founded.” Here's hoping that we also will replace our ambassador to Afghanistan with someone who can gain Karzai's trust and mentor him on how to be a responsible leader, not demanding it like some shrill step-mother...
bible in mouth disease...
Sarah Palin talking on the Bill O'Reilly Show. Evidently there was a flap over the National Day of Prayer, and the Pentagon dis-inviting Franklin Graham, the son of Billy Graham to speak at a prayer service because of his often anti-Islamic rhetoric: "According to Palin, the recent backlash against the National Day of Prayer is proof that some people are trying to enact a "fundamental transformation of America" and to "revisit and rewrite history" in order to shift the Christian nation away from its spiritual roots.
Palins's advice: "Go back to what our founders and our founding documents meant -- they're quite clear -- that we would create law based on the God of the bible and the ten commandments.
"What in hell scares people about talking about America's foundation of faith?" Palin continued. "It is that world view that involves some people being afraid of being able to discuss our foundation, being able to discuss God in the public square, that's the only thing I can attribute it to."
Spiritual roots means that there is a basis in the belief of God, while a Christian evangelical view is that we were founded on the principals of a Christian God, which is not the case. Our founding fathers believed in tolerance, that anyone was welcome to practice whatever faith they wanted to. They left religious persecution in Europe to find freedom in America; a democracy means there are many opinions and the freedom to express them. To paraphrase Thoreau, I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it...
"As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion..." Article XI, treaty of Tripoli, unanimously approved in the Senate on June 7, 1797, and signed by President John Adams.
"And let us reflect that, having banished from our land that religious intolerance under which mankind so long bled and suffered, we have yet gained little if we countenance a political intolerance as despotic, as wicked, and capable of as bitter and bloody persecutions.... error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.... I deem the essential principles of our government.... Equal and exact justice to all men, of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political; ... freedom of religion, freedom of the press, and freedom of person under the protection of the habeas corpus, and trial by juries impartially selected." - Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1801