Life and Life Only: A Few Quick Takes

As usual, Scott Ritter talks good sense -- in this case about the coming war with Iran, and the specious casus belli that the Bush-Cheney gang seem to have finally settled on: Iran's alleged "sanctuaries" for training and arming Iraqi insurgents. Ritter demolishes this argument, just as he crushed the lies in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq. His truth-telling was of no avail then -- and it will likely be of no avail now. But go read the whole thing anyway.

Meanwhile, Juan Cole carries out some demolition work of his own, taking apart the ignorant mischief of Edward Luttwak, who was given a NYT pulpit to proclaim that Obama is an apostate Muslim -- and thus in danger of imminent death from one billion of his erstwhile co-religionists. (As if Luttwak and the Right are really, really concerned about Obama's survival.) What's most interesting here is not the defense of Obama, but Cole's learned insights into the Muslim world, which remains a minatory terra incognita (or should that be terror incognita?) to most folks in God's shining city on a hill.

Via the redoubtable Grandma Jefferson, at TomDispatch, Ann Jones reports on some small but effective counterattacks in the worldwide war against women -- a war which has united all classes, races, peoples and places down through the centuries. In Africa,  a unique grass-roots program is giving women the chance to document the suffering and injustice that is the "normal" condition of their daily lives. The resulting photographs have produced some surprising results in places -- and some hard defeats as well.

Do you want hear Donald Rumsfeld telling a roomful of ex-brass now serving as Bush moles in the media that the only "correction" for the American people's "immaturity" -- exemplified by their giving control of Congress to the Democrats in 2006 -- is another terrorist attack on American soil? Then go to this site (via A Tiny Revolution), where, through the magic of audio, you can sit down with Rummy and the shills for a cozy, boozy lunch and settle the world's hash. There you can hear Rummy ruminate -- in his preppy whine -- on how some good old terrorist carnage would get everyone "energized" again for the sacred War on Terror.

Here of course Rumsfeld is merely regurgitating his long-held position on the efficacy of terror as a facilitator of one's political agenda. After all, he was one of the prime movers of the Project for a New American Century, which famously declared -- in September 2000 -- that PNAC's ambitious and aggresive plans for expanding American military dominance across the world would probably never be enacted -- unless the nation was hit by "a new Pearl Harbor" which would "catalyze" the American people into supporting the militarist agenda. And lo and behold, just one year later, the militarists got their new Pearl Harbor -- and immediately enacted almost the entire agenda laid out in PNAC's 2000 blueprint! Some people are just lucky, I guess.

But now they've just about run through the windfall of political capital they got from that amazingly incredible  piece of luck, and are now openly yearning for that "energizing" lightning to strike again. Gosh, could they really be that lucky?