News commentary and predictions of political trends and what the future holds

war

Afghanistan – prospect of failure?

October 5, 2009

Army chief warns of prospect of failure in Afghanistan.

When the chief of the army starts a claim for more pay with dire warnings of losing a war in Afghanistan it takes away some edge from the argument he is making. Losing in Afghanistan is a worse result than underpaid soldiers, certainly.

Full article on DT: Predicting Future Politics


World Depression

July 9, 2008

and how to avoid it

Is the world falling into some kind of recession? That is when growth starts to subside and things economically suck, but if one understands it right, then what it is seen as is the loss of confidence based on property ownership – a line of credit was generally loosened up for billions of home owners, a culture of being able to borrow against one’s mortgage increased leveraging and the profits were handsome so the banks continued to go further.

The tragedies that underlie sub-prime + the oil hunger – a direct consequence of the Iraq war + lack of real progress with the nuclear question = potential for another Depression. It is not just that bills will not get paid, it is that assets will lose their value, nobody will buy things and prices will start to fall. If that fall accelerates – the potential for severe economic storms becomes more likely.

The authority carried by Security Council decree against a country, especially one of its nuclear capable members, may help guide us from disaster. The only thing that makes “nuclear weapons” necessary is other nuclear weapons. What real point is there in having nuclear weapons? To conquer any chance of threat in case of unpredictable behaviour. After all humans have their finger on the button. The USSR had Breshnev. America has Bush. Both caused recession.

Both also fought with Afghanistan. Not that fighting Afghanistan has been the problem for America – but because they did not provide their full ferocity to win the war in Afghanistan with commitment, they still are at war with malign forces.

Sorry, Osama bin Laden, it is hard to admire a person who promotes the death of innocents. It was not bin Laden that alerted the world to George Bush’s America. Osama bin Laden is not doing the work of God. It is not definite that he is not working for his homeland.

Neither is the US military incursion into Iraq, although by doing that and by not wiping out the Taleban, and at the same time efforts to quell appear to be fanning the flames of nuclear trouble with Iran, well – one can only imagine the end game.

The Office of President is not being attacked by Congress because it is “at war”. That is all keeping Bush and Cheney in office till February 2009.

To bring charges against Bush or Cheney would require that they depart office or end the state of war, and a pardon from their successor, whomever wins is all it takes to bury this sad chapter.

But the extraction of trillions of dollars from the US economy by chiefly OPEC countries, well. How many trillions has Saudi directly cost the US?

I think that the high oil prices are a direct result of the US uncovering its own lack of ruthlessness in war allowing a relatively degraded enemy to survive. Now the Arab nations smell nuclear technology within reach, and the confidence they now have in bargaining power seems the new reality.

Is the international recession in fact a deliberate plot to vacuum wealth out of US hands and into the hands of Arabia? The underlying economic war is far more serious because of sub-prime and the loss of confidence and money from a system growing on increasingly thin vapour.

A belief that the source of economic difficulties are “asset related” but providing free housing to the poor has been found to be an unsustainable activity of the US Government – is another way to put it.

It appears to be the problem, but it is the oil shock that will change economies the world over. Unless Bush can win his wars real soon now, and instantly restore confidence in the unassailability of the USA, the rest of the world will not start trembling has they now have been given the lever it needs to even the economic stakes.

Perhaps the only way to stop the spread of the Taleban cult or the Al Qaeda insanity is for taxes to increase for the wealthy, the US to pay its debts and stop living so ridiculously beyond its means.


Afghanistan worsens

June 14, 2008

As Dennis Kuchinich reads his charges for impeachment of GW Bush and Dick Cheney, the folly of their actions is starting to kill more Americans in Afghanistan than Iraq, for the last month at least. This is partly due to “the surge” in Iraq reducing insurgency by killing more “terrorists” and others, but also to increased Taleban activity and the Al Qaeda leadership who continue to find sheltered and a base of resistance in Pakistan. But there are so many more soldiers in Iraq that each American death in Afghanistan is proportionately more “damage value” to the opposing side.

Reading the article linked above (click on the heading, or right-click to open it in a new tab*) makes me feel that there is an effort to say it is too hard to find Osama and this will be – or will be attempted to justify a limited nuclear strike to cut the head from the dragon, so to speak. There does seem to be a gathering force to expose evident obsessiveness of the American leadership combined with moral blindess and apparent illiteracy. Heading his old Press guy go public with his New York Times best seller – you distictly get the impression that as long as these guys run the USA, the world is playing Russian Roulette.

That another irrationally struck war or action this President could take to ease his frustration with the non-progress on his “War on Terror” – terrorism is worse than before but draconian Homeland Security has increased the risk to Al Qaeda operatives. As unbelieveablely huge and inefficient the DHS may be, it does require terrorists to fill out lots of forms, a sort of medevil test of guilt, perhaps.

But the DHS is more effective than the US forces are fighting a nonsensical war against all takers who want to try their luck in this human landscape video game emulation. It is a failure of Islam to allow youths to be so stupidly killed by overwhelming force. It is a failure of Christianity to allow its leader to justify committing crimes against humanity with a pack of lies.

The fierce war in Afghanistan/Pakistan threatens the United States of America. The insurgency in Iraq is a self inflicted wound.

*or update your browser to the latest Firefox 3, or Opera, or IE8 when it arrives


The end of war

June 9, 2008

The End of War is a notion, certainly, but it is also a statement of intent. Many do not understand war as anything other than a force that some evil leads our side into, until our side bluffs its way into warfare and we then question if our leadership really does know what it is doing, what right it has to life and death and what the limits on use of armies as police are, and why.

Leadership has to be more than bravery and, let’s face it, being suckered up to by the manufacturers of weapons that require Governments to consume their armanents to stay in business is a source of election funding.

Americans may blame Jimmy Carter for things that were economic consequences of the massive cost of Vietnam. When shall we learn the Republican adventure is actually a larger and more expansionalist form of Government?


Banned (from TV) cartoon

April 24, 2008

“very creepy, disturbing children’s cartoon, banned from TV”

Views: 3,135,364

Original Sin, Version 0.31 ?

With over 3 million views, it carries a title that deserves to be quoted. An internet magic formula at work that also prompts me to comment about it. Is it sacreligeous? Heretical? Well, not quite.

Whether you agree with its ideas or imagery or find it objectionable you have to admit it is any bit as mystical as religious dogma of any faith – in that sense it seeks to be art. But to also be perceived as giving children a vision of that which competing religions seek to define, is troublesome to those who seek to steer clear of such defining influence.

The YouTube presentation is effective marketing. For clay-mation to subvert reality so effectively it simply has to be good because it is such a committed form of film making. When the mask of theatre becomes the mask of death it reveals that the powers that dictate seek to use our very lives as collateral that could be swallowed up in their wars for power. We are not very meaningful to the results of that equation.

Consider what the underground media in China spreading as their version of grass roots “conspiracy theory”, stories of how the CIA exploits Tibet in a grand plot; where do you think “conspiracy theory” is written? Tibet is clearly a place to absorb a displaced population or burgeoning community. It is land theft on a massive scale. Overpopulation is a problem that will not just “go away”; addressing it by brute force to create a more successful low-cost economy out of a feudal cooperative always claims economic victims. Does China have the twin benefits of huge centralised wealth in an ocean of feudal poverty? How effectively capital can now successfully exploit the huge working class. Or does it elevate the masses to the very heart of power?

The rise of financial power powers this virtual continent within a continent but how socialised did it become after its one-child policy? It seems to have made an historical leap away from the cultural revolution. There are over a third of a million millionaires in China. “The number of U.S. millionaire households has risen to a record high of 9.3 million as of mid-2006”. – TNS Newswire. Granted, China’s wealth is more centralised and the potential for growth is enormous. But does this explain the adoption of concern by the Right Wing about “The Environment”? Perhaps it does. Addressing this without war is crucial to the continued existence of life on Earth. It probably really is.


International Connectiveness

March 7, 2008

Disturbing Trends is now being served from Atlanta based servers to improve international availability for all. We noticed a slowdown when we hosted locally.

The problem is apparently a lot of contention for international bandwidth – our local infrastructure is good for local sites, but Disturbing Trends is hardly about New Zealand, although this year we had to sadly report that it suddenly became troubled by a huge police operation against multiple “terror cells” – some of them were probably some local boys out shooting ducks but the public needs an explanation for the Napalm rehearsals.

Tama Iti, one man famous not just for his remarkable face full moko – and it’s a superb example of the power of the reality of this powerful Maori art form has become the symbol of the forces that want to set up a Maori sovereign nation that the New Zealand Government is strictly opposed to; a separitist state run by Maori for Maori has a point, but only up to a point. There is more to gain by sharing strengh than arguing. But debate is between the living, on both sides of any thing worth debating.

Weapons of war have no place in this magical land. The meeting place is a place where minds work best but the battle field may bring about the flash of heroics, fear and dread: progress is about enabling people to get what they want as individuals, not selfish demagogs who are dictating to others that violations may unlock magical political clout. Nobody is going to want to listen to anyone who commits atrocities. We want to listen to what Mr Iti has to say. What he thinks as well as his more media savvy grand gestures.


Three Trillion US Dollars

March 2, 2008

The real cost of the Iraqi misadventure to the people of the USA has been calculated by a Nobel winning economist at over three trillion dollars.


Police have duty to protect public

November 10, 2007

“The real problem is not that the police acted, it was the premature and unnecessary invocation of the Terrorism law to deliberately make it fail.”

The police raided and arrested a number of people and brought charges under gun control laws for illegal weapons and they also tried to lay terrorism charges. That failed. There is a lot of public support for the actions of the police but some of that is based on the generated fear aroused by the T word.

Charges are being brought and if these people are proven guilty of possessing automatic weapons and planning to hurt people – well I guess that is not going to be a walk in the park – but serious charges require a serious case that successfully passes the tests of justice including proper evidence, etc.

We want the law applied properly.


Ending War

October 4, 2007

It strikes me as odd how the Right Wing debate is not so much “why are we fighting” as “those dirty Democrats caused all this!”. Blaming the opposition is a necessity of our political philosophy – from the cradle of conflict we believe truth will emerge.

The Democrats want to withdraw the troops – at least Barak Obama does. In fact he wants to end all war everywhere if I read him right. Compare this with the most Right wing candidates like Fred Thompson, riding on his popular appeal certainly – but not short of a policy or two. His is one of the more popular candidate websites but then again so is Denis Kucinich.

The Republicans want everyone to swallow hard and accept that the Bush strategy is the correct strategy. Right wing talk boards resound with the justification that Islamofascism is “evil” and must be “destroyed”. How many Republicans know one thing about Islam beyond framing it as “evil”? This type of thinking is masked racism.

Masked – as it is framed by ideology – but one could rephrase this and call it anti-semitism. This entire hatred and fear campaign against Islam is just plain wrong. The demonisation of an enemy is necessary in the comic book reality of the American media mind. He is a bad guy because he is a dictator. He is a fascist. He is an evil dictator. He is Evil.

So, Mr Bush – who is good? Those who agree with you that killing hundreds of thousands of people is ridding the world of terrorism? What do you think about the government of Burma? They seem to be copying your example.


Homegrown Terrorists in Germany

September 6, 2007

Muslim converts target Germany – Times Online – Home grown dissent exists in every country – but for dissenters to execute terror campaigns against their neighbors for the sole purpose of killing them – only encourages militant leaders to emerge. (For example: will Islam force another Bush upon the world by scaring the votors)?

Western Governments are becoming increasingly sensitive to the issue as perhaps ideological in nature. Nazi-ism was also idealogical in nature and witness the support its heartless faith acquired as its iron glove crushed freedom. But it was the reaction, by the allies – that burnt European cities. It is the reaction of Governments that raises the ante for the forces that reproduce terrorists. Breeding terror is the real cause for alarm.

When words like “surgical” are applied to acts of war, you can be fairly sure that civilians are still dying – why? Because they have.

Wars are not won or lost. People are lost. War becomes its own inevitability and should always be avoided unless the cancer is worse. Rebirth from utter destruction is expensive. There is no human condition, however desperate that requires annihilation. Even from despair, we find a way to reform ourselves, hence the wounds of war never heal, they are inherited.

this one has shocked Germans more than any other: it has exposed the existence of a home-grown terrorist potential.

Home grown Islamic and other forms of terrorism existed before 9/11. Why it still shocks us is the same reason Bush gave for invading Iraq. Acts of war based on what ifs and profound logic have proven to breed terrorism, as totalitarianism will, also. It is up to people to turn the tide away from American interference, away from nuclear weapons, away from environmental damage, away from terror threat and back to putting our spare resources into understanding each other.

Rapid fundamentalism is the result of no education.


To Withdraw or not?

August 24, 2007

Reading the full Bush commentary rather than just sound bites – makes one appreciate how good his speech writers are to be able to frame American war involvement only against the “end game” risk factors.

It is revealing that the Bush logic is based on a novel. America walked into Iraq and created havoc. Why? The Democrats can not answer for that, but they do expect to be able to take over the end game. How?

The Republicans will blame them for folding early. But the Bush policy to wipe out the insurgency requires killing every insurgent or removing their motivation.

Withdrawal is not the best solution. The current strategy is even worse. Polling public opinion does not inform, but restricts.


Bush predicts bloody summer in Iraq

May 25, 2007

Bush predicts bloody summer in Iraq – New Zealand’s source for World News on Stuff.co.nz

George Bush finally looks like he has fallen over the edge – the edge when a president no longer wants makeup artists fussing before a camera explores ones frailty. As he predicts a bloody summer of violence in Iraq he does not seem to realise that his actions are not inspiring peace. “Modern war” is still a barbaric excuse for not communicating.

Yes, it is going to be a bloody summer.

Just imagine if George Bush had conceded to Al Gore all those years ago. Al would have been able to do some sums and would have sent 100,000 troops plus into Afghanistan and followed this up with 100,000 civilians to rebuild the country after isolating the Taliban. Iraq was in need of attention, yes, but invasion may be seen as a breach of trust by the citizens.

What gets me is that George Bush has said nothing about how to make things better in Iraq, only how he will wage war on Iraq – and why? To kill terrorists. Where do they keep coming from? They grow up hating those that impose upon their country. It is generally accepted by invading Iraq created more terrorists. Bush is the grand executioner of fools drawn to the battle for reasons of religious zealotry.

What is transpiring is nothing less than a huge waste of humanity and is a great tragedy and a terrible sin, on both sides.


Al Qaeda tactics expand in Gaza

May 12, 2007

Al Qaeda tactics expand in Gaza | csmonitor.com

WW III ALERT

Disturbing Trends has defined Al Qaeda as a “cult”. It leaches adherents from the fringes of a very large pool of disaffected young people who see the West as the puppet masters that keeps them poor. The West is still reeling from its colonial guilt, those reigns and the passing of control of oil wealth to these countries have resulted in a capitalism so strong and confined that over 95% of Saudi Arabia do not share in the oil wealth but live in poverty.

The only way to unlight this fuse is to develop alternative means of propulsion and now. That would reduce the incomes of the ruling class and force them to invest the currently unvalued communities and only by investing their wealth in others should they maintain relevance.

Of course democracy is the answer, but war destroys democracy, if you are fighting civilians drawn from the encroaching fringes of madness fueled by the very conflict America and Mr Bush are seeking to douse.

The “madness fueled from the encroaching fringes” is a cult – it is a way of thinking and drawing your rash young zealots into a war they do not belong in. They deserve gainful employment in their own country due to the investment by their leaders. Look at Dubai and compare its prosperity with the Saudi street.

Cult is one of those words that makes people distance themselves, unless they are rebelling against the mold in which it becomes a focus of identity.

That Al Qaeda becomes the locus of Arab identity is the real danger. That is grows as a movement is a reason to alert your leaders that WW III is a risk now faced if war continues to manufacture terrorists.


The Web of Deception

April 23, 2007

Robert Fisk: Caught in the deadly web of the internet – Independent Online Edition > Robert Fisk

Character assasination has taken on a whole new meaning as the “war on terror” progresses. The Dept of Homeland Security has a massive budget for spying upon the activities of potential terrorist threats. That is a reaction to the events of 9/11 and many have conjectured or argued a stance that the Governemnt used or even created 9/11 as a justification for control of the population with monosyallbic concepts and easily digested sound bites.

More civilians have died in the crossfire in this “war on terror” (if you include the events in Iraq since the US invasion) than the war sought to protect from the acts of terrorists. It is hard to accept that the War in Iraq is the same as the war launched to prevent Al Qaeda from establishing, it can be argued that the US invading Iraq was the best thing that could have happened for Al Qaeda.

The war on terror has flipped the tables on the US economy and in conjuction with cynical tax cuts made the poor of America (90%) utterly dependent upon the whim of a cartel of billionaires that rely upon growth in public consumption to continue being powerful. The US has blundered into a new form of slavery. The US now have a war effort in play, so a percentage of your grandchildrens’ income is going to be paying the bill. This is a reduction in the freedom of Americans since Bush came to power.

The first signs of a totalitarian state was the questionable election results that saw the Republicans only begin to enact their agenda after the public were well hypnotised by 9/11. Before 9/11 it was evident that new thinking had pushed aside pursuit of Al Qaeda started under Clinton.

The imprisonment of journalists and academics is the next stage of a new McCarthism. It seems that it now happening and I wonder if the voices of all those Homeland Security agents who are not finding terrorists around every street corner are in fact writing propaganda to “flush out” terrorists? Or, indeed, if it is the activity of “the enemy” – whomever it may be.

It relies upon uncalled for judgement of individuals when looking at Wikipedia articles. Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia that almost invites slander but is regulated by its own active editing “community”. But they can not keep up with concerted efforts to commit acts of libel by “concerned citizens” who remain anonymous to the public eye.

Free speech is one thing. Being able to endanger the lives of others is something else.


Budget, American Style

April 1, 2007

Bush created a budget balancing act based on increased spending, mainly military, of three trillion dollars. A trillion is 1000 billions, using the American system of dealing with numbers that are simply too big. 1,000,000 is our familiar million. 1,000,000,000 (one billion) is becoming a more commonplace concept of the 21st Century – and already we are talking in “trillions” (one of which looks like this: 1,000,000,000,000).

The 3,000,000,000,000 or so America spent on its friutless effort in Iraq has probably been borrowed from Saudi princes who probably are forced to indirectly fund the food chain that disposses far too many and creates al Qaeda. Perhaps that is the underlying rationale behind the Bush invasion. It was not Daddy’s record, but a deal we are not allowed to know about.

The Saudi royal family and its grip on power is funded by the centering of profit from oil extraction from the largest oil fields in the world through just a few hands who then appear to me to pitch America against their own enemies – the Shiite revolution that would render their power obsolete.

America stepped into a breach that appears to be more chaotic for the intervention. It has stepped into the breach of a war brewing on both sides of it. It needs to shore up Sunni support against its new spotlight of threat: Iran.

Whom is fooling whom?

American intervention is an effort to prolong the status quo, history tells us unfathomable power in too few hands is not a stable form of Government. It has resulted in revolution elsewhere, America and France are fine examples of a Republican success that followed revolutions.


How to win against terrorism

February 15, 2007

Where US is helping to make gains against terrorism | csmonitor.com

It is possible to win the war on terrorism. In this example local Phillippine troops are now having some succss against Abu Sayyaf.

“Perhaps most acute is the need to channel funds into poor communities like Panamao, where schoolteachers say they haven’t been paid for over a year.” this kind of community development is necessary to create a future society of thinking individuals who do not resort to evil to make their political point. Individuals who do not believe in the death cult of Al Qaeda or any other perversion of their faith or culture.


Iraq on YouTube

February 11, 2007

Click the heading, but be warned, graphic films of war.

The advent of YouTube as a medium shines many lights on what we previously relied upon propaganda to bear witness to – in this case, it illustrates pretty much what we have written about over the last four years about the real effects of war.

The day of judgement is neigh because 5,000,000 Americans can not bear witness to their own military war machine at work. It is the tactics of soldiers that ride roughshod over the rights of civility. You got to kill the terrorists! It is advantageous to eradicate threats, but it is wise not to give them reasons to rise up and make America into the enemy. A peace treaty between Sunni and Shiite is not only necessary, but nobody is talking about it. They are too busy preparing for the day of judgement, it seems.

There is something awful and death cultish about sending people off to fight to their deaths, positively medievel. As films start to align with computer games, marketing fodder with comic book characters intimitely detailed, calligraphically dynamic – we have everyman with a handicam presenting the real world, shocking reality alongside “reality shows” like the famous Lonleygirl15 of YouTube fame. Won’t catch her in Iraq, but her story arc seems to have its own fantasy Blair Witchy appeal.

But as an eyeglass to war? Youtube is indeed a revelation.

The movie below is a disturbing tour of modern Baghdad streets in a Humvee.


Invading Iran

February 5, 2007

Al Jazeera English – Americas reports an ex-US general warning against the US launching an attack on Iran. The consequences for security in the region were severe, the retired army lieutenant general Robert Gard said. He is a former military assistant to US defense secretary, Robert McNamara, and he urged the US government to “engage immediately in direct talks with the government of Iran without preconditions.”