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08 June 2006


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The buildup of Zarqawi appears similar to J. Edgar Hoover's "Public Enemy #1" media campaign back in the 1920's and 30's. An American tradition, and a cops-and-robbers strategy that benefits both sides in "Image Is Reality World." An unattributed observation from AP today:
"Whether the bloodshed continues depends in part on who succeeds al-Zarqawi and [if] the new leader will continue killing Shiite civilians with the intention of sparking a civil war that pits Sunnis against Shiites."
Set up another Black Hat for the White Hats to chase, keep selling a profoundly disconnected trope, and accomplish nothing in terms of solving the fundamental problems.
"The big story today was the approval of Defense and Interior ministers." - PL


Thanks for responding to me :)

"No. They are incapable of doing anything more than talking vainly about "differences." pl"

I am still wondering, Pat. You observed:

"We can not deal with the reality of completely different and adversarial world views and mind sets. We account for systematic hostility toward adoption of our ways by attributing this "backwardness" to "bogey men" who from sheer evilness and perversity lead their fellows astray. Having done this, we then build them up in our minds and media as "supermen" whose elimination will end resistance to our "program" of "modernity.""

I get your response and I am left thristing for more. For what it is worth, I am an academic geographer and I like to think I can relate to my students how our leaders view the world. I cannot believe our leaders do not get your trenchant observations about otherness. I mean, did we really elect a President and his posse who know no more than vainglory? What about people in the wings like Kissinger or Powell or Albright? Why cannot they influence our naive President and his policy makers? I'm serious and perplexed here.

Is our nation and the world really being run by people who are so wedded to their own narrow view, they cannot countenance people of goodwill offering alternative visions?

Green Zone Cafe

Well, I'm so glad he's dead. As Andres Cantor would say, "Gooooooool."

Even if he represents only 10% of the insurgents, he was the leader and inspiration for the most evil part.

As I said a few times to Iraqi co-workers, "I can understand trying to kill me, but why kill Iraqis going out for ice cream after praying at a Husayniah?"

Burn in hell, Zarky.

W. Patrick Lang


"Cultural geographer." How is that different from an ethnologist?

I think Americans generally have a problem with accepting the reality of differences of mentality among the peoples. Our own country is a good example. We tend to explain cultural differences among our regions not in the context of differing historical inputs leading to diverging (or merging) cultures but rather in terms of "advanced" thinking or "backwardness." If you listen for this, you will hear it on television all the time.

When you have this background phenomenon reinforced with a specific political philosophy which sees all previous human experience as mere prologue to a brave new world oncoming, then the inability to cope with cultural alienness becomes impenetrable and the opinions of "experts" whosse skill is involved with historically developed culture become simply worthless in the eyes of the government. pl


Somebody keeping tab of all the story media is printing based on "Information", instead of reporter seeing it themselves?

give it 3 more months, we gonna have a lot of fun seeing Zarqawi raised form the death, grow another limb, involved in another bombing/beheading/kidnapping, or his No.2 is undead.

take note all places/time/reported meeting with people. We gonna see Zarqawi can be in 3 different places at same time.

Creative writing flunkies.

Happy Jack

The good Colonel is a man of the South. That being the case, he is instinctively aware of the different value systems in this country. It's not a fluke that Southerners are disproportionately represented among Medal of Honor winners.

VMI and the Citadel are not in the South by chance. If you understand the history of this country, and the regional differences, you gain an understanding and insight into the value systems of this and other countries.

If you were born in the South (or parts of the West), you have to learn to deal with and accept other value systems. The North has historically, and currently, been in the driver's seat as far as defining our values. Hence, a Northerner finds it easy to dismiss Southern culture. The opposite isn't quite as easy.

That's what makes pl's insight so valuable. He's lived it.
His military and intelligence background adds a cherry on top, of course.

W. Patrick Lang


I am a product of the US Army but you have me pegged and your insights are on the money. pl

Patrick Henry

Well said Happy Jack..

Truth in Commentary..

Rightfully discerned..and Appropiately applied..To a True Southern Gentleman..

A Patriot ..a Scholar..

a Veteran..

a` Toast,..Of Southern Confort..

To Colonial Patrick Lang..

Happy Jack

pl- sorry, I didn't mean it literally. I'm sure you mentioned you're from the North (Maine?). I meant that you talked like a Southerner.

The military's values bear a striking similarity to the South's. Likewise, the notion of honor is embedded in Bedouin culture (and others as well, eg, Japan).

Some of your commenters seem confused about what you're talking about sometimes. My point was that if they understand the South, it would help in understanding the values that permeate the Mideast.

WJ Case, or Bertram Wyatt-Brown would be the recommendation of this Ridge Runner.

W. Patrick Lang

Hey Jack

No greater compliment. pl

Babak Makkinejad

Col. Lang:

You wrote: "I think Americans generally have a problem with accepting the reality of differences of mentality among the peoples". But is this that uncommon among other peoples of the world?

Would it not be more concrete to suggest that the other people in the world normally do not have the wherewithal of politically interacting with others half-way around the world and try to change their ways?

W. Patrick Lang


You have a point when you say tht a lot of people are similarly ill disposed toward others.

I spoke of my own country because our actions are so portentous in the world that our incapacities are of great significance for many.



My question is what has happened recently that would have diminished Zarqawi's value as propaganda tool to the point that they took him out. I think I read somewhere that AQ leadership had lost confidence in him...did that play a role?

Posted by: Duck of Death | 08 June 2006 at 11:24 PM

well, let's put it this way. According to Pentagon. Al qaeda has announce they have secretly appoint new leader. (read. holy cow, how are we gonna cover the lie after Al qaeda is not playing ball with us and own up zarqawi.)

It'll be veeeeeery interesting when al qaeda is doing their usual summer campaign. And the terrorists incident chart shows no change in trend. How is Pentagon going to explain business as usual at Al qaeda scene? Telling another lies?

it never ends is it?


Our own country is a good example. We tend to explain cultural differences among our regions not in the context of differing historical inputs leading to diverging (or merging) cultures but rather in terms of "advanced" thinking or "backwardness."

Bingo, thanks Pat.

I think these are the kind of discussions we should be having, around the world. You're different? How, why? Tell me YOUR story--that might help rather than shooting first and asking questions about Iraqi sectarianism later.

W. Patrick Lang


Read my CV. pl

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