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04 June 2017


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Brother Babak,
I wasn't referring to forced conversion. I was referring to an increase
of proselytizing of the Christian faith in Europe. Just because Christianity is persecuted/banned/restricted in many Muslim countries
is no reason for Christians in Europe to refrain from trying to make converts among Muslims. European Muslims aren't afraid of trying to convert Christians, is their Muslim faith so weak that they can't stand up to a good a theological give-and-take? Are they like our own SJW snowflakes who must shut down discussion of everything that disturbs their tranquility?


the position of "We can kill our way to a state of relative quiet in which the jihadi impulse is suppressed for some time, perhaps a long time", shouldn't be ignored.

How's that going so far? That's been basically our whole approach. We haven't tried to address or even acknowledge any of the well-founded complaints about our activities in the region.


"Why can't we just let go of the belief that we have the right to do this?"

Because Zbig Brzezinski created the Carter Doctrine. And the answer to your question might be illuminated by this blockbuster of a revealing article published two days after Zbig’s death by someone who was in Carter’s White House and is now giving a first-hand account of what Carter allowed Brzezinski to get away with. It starts slowly then rips.


You need only apologize for the lack of paragraph breaks with a blank line in between. Some of us read these posts and comments on an iPhone or iPad. Impossible to do without proper screen formatting, which is the opposite of what print publishing demands.

An internet paragraph is not the same as a print or scholarly journal paragraph, which emphasizes subject matter importance from the most important to the least throughout,the article with each paragraph supplying proof of the point made

An internet paragraph is designed for readability on a variety of devices and operating systems. Generally two or three sentences each. Ever read a Maureen Dowd column? (Dowd is a columnist for the NYTimes.) She writes for the web correctly.


"you can beat bazaaris down using the levers of their courtesy. Negotiating in general is thought by most Arabs as a process in which the weaker party is allowed to surrender gracefully to the stronger. Weakness is indicated by a signal desiring negotiations."

This idea seems strange to me as a westerner that one exhibits weakness by signaling a desire for negotiating. Here in the West, the strong often demand negotiation from a weaker party. It is the levers I am interested in. What are they and how do they work?

Could it be that the west continuously fails in its relations with the east because the cultural signals/levers work in opposite ways so that the intended message of one side is read totally differently by the other?

As for your earlier writings, I recall you telling us about an incident where some Russian soldiers who were trying to negotiate something in a bazaar and you helped them out somehow. That was years ago.

I have always wanted to go to a bazaar to see if I could haggle some good deals.

Bill Herschel

I know of only one successful action against the Saudi/Western sponsored jihadists: Chechnya. Aside from that, and even that may be fake knowledge, I know nothing. I do believe that the terrorist attacks we are witnessing are a sign of battle fatigue on the battlefield by ISIS. They are striking now where they can strike. I imagine that Chechnya comes very close to the killing solution.



Thanks for the delayed response. To quote Dubhaltach from three years ago "The idea is that an imam needs to be aware of and respect the social, political, and legal realities of the country(ies) in which he lives and preaches"

Why should that only be a requirement of the Imams? What percentage of Austrian Muslims meet that requirement?


Muslim populations have fought against occupiers and trespassers with appeals to religion, through the call to jihad, a valid defensive struggle. In the Caucasus, it was against the Russians, as was Afghanistan, Libyans battled Italy. In the middle of the 20th century, however, the same causes were fought in terms of various ideologies including pan-Arabism and anti-colonial nationalism, such as in Algeria, which also had a religions component. In Aden/Dhofar, even Communism was incorporated into the battle.

Shortly before he died, the long time Irish expert on the Arab world, Fred Halliday, who wrote "Arabia without Sultans," noted at a British conference on jihadism, that when all the current banners, to include Islam, are enfeebled, what will remain is "resistance," under no matter what banner. For him, one battle cry or another will be used as long as people are put upon by others. It is the rebellion against injustice that is at the heart of conflict and will continue to be such, whether the unjust are internal or foreign.



A lawyer from Grand Rapids who teaches at Cooley? I'm sure he's an expert.


Tidewater observes,

I just took a look at the Daily Mail report that one of the London knifemen had been filmed in a program about city Islamists that appeared on London TV. He is only described as a twenty-seven-year old. The photos show him with a
small group of four or five men prostrate at prayers in a park; and he is shown unfurling the black ISIS flag. There is then some sort of confrontation with the authorities. He seems to have received a caution, and nothing else.

What interests me here is that while London famously has a Hyde Park Speakers Corner where anyone so inclined can get up and make a speech, it does not appear that this little group of fanatics was there. Further, contrary to popular belief, any speaker at Hyde Park corner remains subject to the law, as, for example, regarding obscene speech. I was unaware that over the years there have been some five other Speakers Corners in various London parks. Years ago I had the heady experience of participating there, when I found the subject was Jim Crow, and though I was agin' Jim Crow, I felt corrections were in order about certain
slurs against my native state and region. I found myself turning into a kind of monster, though I started quite well, and thereby learned something about free speech, as well as about myself.

However, my point here is that I think there are already laws on the books in Britain, which if diligently acted upon, as in this case, might have gone a long way towards preventing this massacre. Consider the Queen's Peace; was this man not breaking it? Disturbing the Peace? In Virginia the law is useful. I have been told--this was years ago, at Clark's on 29 N --that you could strap on a pistol in Alexandria and walk down King Street quite legally, but you would be arrested for Disturbing the Peace. If this 27-year-old had been arrested for breach of the peace, brought into court and sentenced to six months in jail and been given a fine, and then, after having served two months, out on parole, now finding himself having to report to a parole officer, I can't help thinking that tolerant attitudes around him would have changed, and he would have come under a lot more notice from perhaps family, or friends, or neighbors. He would have no longer been able
to hide in plain sight. Continuing close attention to this man and his friends by the authorities might have uncovered other breaches of the law, questions say, about the registration of the van. Perhaps eventually Islamic neighbors would have 'denounced' him, as the Spanish say. If any of his friends had a criminal record, then he would have been at risk of violating his parole. This doesn't sound like cricket, but the Islamic community had better get its act together, or it could find its members being required to register and carry certain papers and to present them at any policeman's whim, at any time.

And that would just be the beginning.



So, in your view jihad is a product of "resistance to injustice?" What is the injustice that Al-Qa'ida and IS are resisting? pl


More likely tribal. Irish who happened to be Catholic v Scottish who happened to be Protestant, and since partition in 1921, it's been anti-colonial with a touch of gangsterism off and on since until 1998 Good Friday Agreement.
When a Republican says "Brits out" he's not just referring to the British administration in Belfast, he's referring to the Scottish colonists in Ulster. The solution to the Northern Ireland problem was pretty obvious back in the 1960s with the Civil Rights movement, but neither side was prepared to compromise at that point.



They were sailors from the USSR Black Sea Fleet and the place was Tunis. they were trying to trade bits of metal junk from their uniforms, pins, etc. for individual cigarettes from a street vender. They were in a tour group under a petty officers supervision. their ship was in port. I felt sorry for them and bought a pack of cigarettes for the vender to give them. Even I have SOME human feelings. The vender thought it was funny that this American "tourist" was buying smokes for these fellows. Yes. You understand nothing about the Arab culture and seem incapable of trying to understand it. pl



OK. what would be "the well founded complaints about our actions?" the existence of Israel? the supposed puppet regimes? buying their oil? what would they be? pl


"Why should that only be a requirement of the Imams? What percentage of Austrian Muslims meet that requirement?"

One problem in Germany and Austria is that many imams are often not trained properly in respect to European culture, do not speak German and influence their communities in a way I do not like.

This issue was self inflicted, we should have offered religious education in high schools much earlier, this with teachers who were trained in Germany.

Around 2012, in Germany and Austria 50% of the Muslims are Turks, 25% are eastern European, around 10% each are Asians and North Africans. Pakistanies and Afghans are a small minority.

Now we have had a much higher influy from ME, especually Syria, during 2015/16.

Most of the Turks are secular, most of the Muslims from the Balkan too. The Syrains now complain that the "Turkish" mosques are too old fashioned.

I do not know how many are really integrated in the sense that they defend western values against their own people.


Brother Pacifica,
No, I really wasn't referring to forced conversions in any way, shape or form. All of my posts explicitly reference preaching the Gospel in Europe. And yes, I too find being approached by someone like a Latter Day Saint or a Seventh-Day Adventist to be annoying. But I deal with it through a smile and a polite "I'm not interested".
I ask the question again: are the Muslims in Europe so fragile, so like our SJWs that we must tiptoe around lest we upset their delicate egos. I advocate for a robust theological debate between Christianity and Islam not for forceful conversions.
If I understand him correctly Brother Babak seems to think that the remnants of the Enlightenment will eventually bring the jihadis to their senses. Eventually can be a very long time. I too am an "Advocate of Peace". May I respectfully and with no intention of sarcasm ask what your suggestion for a peaceful solution is? I view my proposal as an updated version of the non-violent demonstration, as a peaceful sit-in if you will. Hope to hear from you.
BrotheJoe sends you his best wishes.



I think you got that one wrong. Dempsey probably prevented WW3 by his actions back in 2014.


Anniversary of 1967 war looming, Norman Finkelstein was interviewed by Aaron Mate of The Real News
on "What Really Happened."


Most interesting observation was Finkelstein's explanation of BenGurion's overarching fear of the rise of "a new Ataturk," a Muslim or Arab leader who could unify the Arab world and elevate the Arab world from its backwardness. To the end of removing that possibility, Finkelstein said that BenGurion and all subsequent Israeli leaders followed policies of undermining any potential strong leader to deliberately keep Arabs backward and fragmented.

Finkelstein's comments brought to mind statements by David Wurmser in a December 2007 discussion in Annapolis, in which Iran posed the greatest threat to Israel (or the mindset induced by Ben Gurion). Wurmser said,

Iran’s strategy is exceedingly refined and unified in vision. It is not threatening the countries around them militarily; rather, it exposes their impotence in dealing with fundamental questions concerning the Muslim world. They ask how the Muslims could have been a light upon all nations, the center of the world, a thousand years ago, and now look at them. . . . The Iranians are playing on a far more dangerous level. https://www.c-span.org/video/?202444-1/annapolis-middle-east-summit

PS Neglected to extend birthday greetings to the Colonel -- Happy Birthday, and many more fruitful years.


Shades of Ralph Peters.

There are no diplomatic, ideological, political, cultural, or social solution to the problem of radical islamic terrorism. The days of "hearts and minds" COIN operations are over; attrition warfare is in.

Trump does not want to destroy ISIS, he is now calling for a level of destruction he is calling "annihilation". The old conventional warfare term of "destroy" where you eliminated the enemies capability or will to continue fight is no longer enough (think the first Iraqi 5 day war, where we ceased combat operations with most/much of the Iraqi army still intact). I suspect that the effect that annihilation is supposed to bring about is that reconstitution of the enemy is to be made impossible by achieving enemy material, personnel and infrastructure losses close to 100%.

I just hope we do not lose the peace by the State Department trying to install democratic institutions. What is needed to preempt terrorism and insurgencies are authoritarian police states. It worked on both sides of the Iron curtain after WW2.




A slightly harsh personal attack. I truly find the Arab culture hard to understand, but I hope I am not incapable or trying, else I would not be a member of your Committee.



I confess to frustration that you do not seem to understand or accept anything I tell you about Arab or Islamic culture. this is interesting because you profess to be a liberal man living in the deep south but you can't seem to get your head around the idea that the people we are talking about are different. pl


Interesting point to bring up here to illustrate the importance of this, in the approximately 2 years following the Tunisian "revolution", a state of anarchy ruled this previously heavuly authoritarian sphere of society(the strictly controlled use of government-approved civil servants as Imams). "Unlicensed mosques" with "unlicensed imams", many of them returning from exile in europe, sprang up like mushrooms. Tunisia, one of the most secular arab countries in the ME, then became the #1 source of foreign fighters to ISIS, more than doubling the members sent by #2(saudi arabia). All of that in less than 2 years of unlicensed preaching, at which point the government realized the gravity of the situation once politicians started being assassinated and the true magnitude of the ISIL issue began to come apparent. One can only imagine the beast lurking just under the surface, if this was accomplished in such a short period in one of the most secular and historically peaceful arab countries in the ME


What is the status of Iranian mullahs/scholars and that reject vilayat-e Faqih, on theological grounds, and their relationship with the government?



My question, "This idea seems strange to me as a westerner that one exhibits weakness by signaling a desire for negotiating. Here in the West, the strong often demand negotiation from a weaker party. It is the levers I am interested in. What are they and how do they work?" was an attempt to learn about the differences.

Clearly, the culture is different, but as our culture interacts with the Arabs, things we do are received with opposite interpretations. I was inquiring into how the western art of the deal is different from the Arab art of their deal. Negotiation is akin to using levers and you tell us the levers in the Arab world are different. How so? "It is the levers I am interested in."

Please help us understand the differences in the levers.



I have discussed this here many times. You are just a pain in the ... In your lawyerly way whatever I say you will ask more and more minutely framed questions. Adios pl

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