Realpolitik madness

I gladly voted for George W. Bush in 2000 and in 2004.

After my protest vote against his Dad (for breaking his promise not to raise taxes) for he-that-shall-remain-nameless in 1992, and my subsequent switch from the Republican party to the Libertarian Party in 1993, and my wasted vote for Harry Browne in 1996, and my switch back to the Republicans after September 11, I have learned the hard way that idealism in the face of the reality of the world is not only stupid, but dangerous. I?ll admit that it stings to say that about myself, but at least I?ve learned from my mistakes.

Since the election of 2000 I have supported President Bush in most of his foreign policy initiatives. After 9/11 I supported his ?war on terror? — although I stick to my belief that we have been in a 1,400 year religio-cultural war with Islam that has had peaks and valleys. Islam, radical or otherwise, will not stop until the infidel (that be us) is dead or converted, and sharia law established. It?s that simple. If there are moderate, peace-loving followers of this religion then their voices have to be raised above the others so that all of us can stop the killing and live in peace and in respect of each other?s beliefs, without the fear of beheadings, C4 belts, IEDs, 757s made into missiles, or of a nuke brought in by container ship.

I am not a blind follower of Dubya, despite the skewed, unthinking, knee-jerk reaction world-view of my liberal Kool-Aid drinking friends. I sincerely believe that he is a good man and a decent man. I believe that he is truly dedicated to doing what he believes is best for this country. Nevertheless, I have disagreed strongly with many a foreign policy and domestic decision his Administration has made since he was inaugurated in 2001. Let me name a few off the top of my head:

  • Inaction on Cuba and keeping wet-foot/dry-foot alive;
  • Immigration control (or the lack thereof) on our southern border;
  • The kowtowing to the murderers in the Palestinian authority over the needs of Israel;
  • The prosecution of the war in Iraq that, as a student of history, I know was too weak in its focus for fear of offending the powers in the Middle East;
  • Inaction over Iran and Syria, two countries that have been a terrible threat to the West for a very long time;
  • The expansion of entitlement programs that need to be cut, not increased, especially Medicare and in the Department of Education;
  • No reform of Social Security;
  • No action on REAL tax reform, in other words the elimination of the regressive income tax replaced by a flat national sales tax.

These are core conservative positions that I deeply hold that have been swept aside because of Dubya?s “new tone” with the Democrats — an abysmal failure in my view, not because of him, mind you, but because the Dems are incapable of acting decently in the face of decency.

So, you may ask, why do I still support him if I disagree with him so much? Well, the alternative is far, far worse than any of us can begin to imagine.

Last week I was shocked when I heard and read in the news that a Dubai company (Dubai Ports World) had purchased the British management company that runs the ports in various cities, including right here in Miami. The more I read, the angrier I got. This deal, if approved, could result in one of the most amazing foreign-policy blunders of the last hundred years. And my opinions are torn, by the way, between my libertarian free-trader side of the brain and my conservative wage-war-until-victory side of the brain. I was angry when that dolt Jimmy Carter turned over our Panama Canal in 1978. I thought then and I think today that it was a huge error to divest our country of that waterway. Jimmah, being the hidden red that he is, knew precisely what he was doing. Today, not surprisingly, the Panama Canal is controlled on both sides by Chinese companies that are in turn controlled by the communist Chinese government. Paranoia pays off.

The why of this deal is not a mystery to me. It has realpolitik writ large all over it. The Middle East is a prime supplier of the engine of Capitalism: petroleum. I am not one of those granola-eaters that rend their robes when they hear that we fight wars for natural resources. ?No blood for oil!? these people scream, as they listen to their iPod, made of materials that use the very substance they despise. Idiots. Man has fought wars over resources since war became the ultimate political chess move. Anybody who thinks otherwise is a deluded fool — or a John Kerry voter.

All of the pundits that support the ports deal are trotting out the canards of racism, islamophobia, that it is wrong to deny the Dubai company its due, since it was controlled by a foreign entity before anyway. Fine. They have a point. But here is the danger: While Dubai has been a staunch ally and has supported the US in the past, what?s to say that radical elements, like those that crop up in any Muslim country — remember Osama in Saudi Arabia and Al-Zawahiri in Egypt? — will not crop up in Dubai or in one of the other Emirates and cause to infiltrate our ports with folks who would be willing to detonate a thermonuclear device inside a container ship in the port of Miami, or Baltimore, or Philadelphia, or New York, and go to paradise? This is not far-fetched.

Friends, Mao Zedong?s quip about selling us the rope he would hang us with may come true if we continue on this path. I am against this deal and I feel strongly that it is folly — dangerous folly — to allow it. That is, in the end, how this deal may be remembered if approved.

The United States and the West is waging war against an ideology that has persisted for fourteen centuries in the belief that unbelievers must be converted or killed. We, a country that was created when the Enlightenment in Europe was still fresh in the air, have no such persistent beliefs, except that we are created equal, endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights, and that we are entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

61 thoughts on “<i>Realpolitik</i> madness”

  1. Exceptional analysis, well stated. There are many, many people who feel the same way you do. Of the many reasons I feel the same about all of your listed issues and more, I think the failures of this admin have much to do with the people with whom he surrounds himself. Even with Bush 1, Reagan, Clinton, Nixon, the calibre of person I think is higher in many respects. Even if W is as obstinate as it seems on so many issues, why do these people continue to adivse and shield him from so much information. Maybe that proves my point – W may know what’s going on, but the people who do know are not running the way it would be run if W did know what was going on!

    Still, the alternative is….? Not anyone on the left. Thank God!

  2. I had mentioned this somewhere else, but….

    There are benefits sometimes when people think you are dumb as most anti-Bush people feel about the president. And this may very well be one of those times.

    Let’s say there is only one American company with the infrastructure to take over the ports from the Brits. Let’s say that company happens to be, oh, I dont know, Halliburton. Now lets say that the administration wants to offer said contract to Halliburton, but understands that given the cries of “collusion with halliburton” prevalent in all anti-bush circles that they would be hard pressed to do so and would be skewered in the press and possibly lose those coveted ratings points.

    So what can the administration do? Toss up a second company that even more people dislike and play dumb.

    Then, after saying “Ooops, we messed up.” they fix the problem by installing the company they wanted in in the first place and minimize the backlash.

    It’s been done before. Myers/Alito rings a bell.

  3. Val, I hope you’re right. I would be thrilled if a US company got the contracts. I’m not holding my breath, though. I think this is the real deal. We have huge airbase in Dubai and they are a very active trading partner with the US. This may be a quid pro quo for the billions in defense goods they buy, but I just don’t like it.

  4. George, I completely agree with you. I have one question though:

    I don’t get your view on the Medicare Education issue, are you saying they need to be cut or increased? Maybe its me, but it reads like you think they should be cut.

  5. The government has ZERO business being in the Education business or in the medical business. Government meddling and regulation is one of the direct causes of the FUBAR’ed state of both of those sectors today. Cut, cut, cut, and cut.

  6. The problem with most of our citizenry, specially those of the “sinister” persuasion, is the tendency to short-run thinking, whether it be in the economic, historical, political arena, etc. So, as an example, a “political genius” like Jimmy Carter, quickly forgets what happened with all that scrap iron we sold to the Japanese in the ’20s and ’30s…

    I too believe we are in the middle of a world-wide jihad, which ultimately will be lost by its fanatical supporters, but at a cost measured in millions of dead. That most of those millions will be in the Middle East is no consolation.

    This is off the subject, but connected to the earlier post on Google. There is a pretty interesting article about Google in the Feb 20 issue of Time magazine. It is worth reading, if only to try and understand what motivates founders Brin and Page. Something interesting, on page 49: “Do the Google guys pay attention to what people think? You bet.” If that is the case, perhaps this is a good time to bombard Google with our questions and concerns about their collaboration with Chinese authorities, and what appears to be built-in bias in their search engine.

  7. George, the facts coming out about that port deal are starting to suggest that it’s ok and won’t be a problem. They are only the people who operate the pulleys and not the security. They have done it for years for lots of other ports and there has never been a problem. I am ok with it happening, these guys don’t want to lose their multibillion dollar investment to terrorists any more than the rest of us do. I really think it’s ok. Bush just needs to explain himself better. Check out what’s up at Real Clear Politics, it’s not that bad what’s happening. http://www.realclearpolitics.com

  8. Mora my husband has the same argument as you, but as I told him yesterday, it only takes one terrorist, just one among them. And they still would have access to most of the information.

  9. I agree with Mora. At the end of the day this is much ado about nothing. This company has zero to do with the security of the ports. Besides, since only 5% of port shipments are examined anyway, the net effect of having an Arab company in charge is zero. Considering the ease of passing something through the ports, if they really wanted to attack us that way, they already have (or will, God forbid). What I don’t understand is why the Administration is so willing to take the PR hit by defending this deal so vociferously. The seem very tone deaf when it comes to PR (e.g. Harriet Miers). I don’t know if this is a bait and switch as Val has suggested or if this is a quid pro quo for the bases, but it is curious to get involved in this fight. The big beneficiaries are the Dems who can try to position themselves to the right of the President on security. Their credibility is shot on security awyway, so big deal, I guess.

  10. as long as it is with reasoned, substantiated argumemnts George. otherwise i get this ringing in my ears……..

    I don’t know, I really don’t trust this deal one bit.

  11. George, you are misinformed on this one. Today the port security is run by the Coast Guard, governed by the Ports Authority and the workers are unionized longshoremen. The day after the contracts are signed, nothing changes.

    Dubai instituted US mandated port security standards before all of our other allies. US Navy ships moor of Dubai ports on a regular basis. The US sold F-16s to Dubai in the late 90’s. Dubai already owns the operation of many ports of origin that unload in the US.

    So lets think of the worst possible scenario. The Dubai Ports Company places an ultra radical sheik in charge of operations. He is not in charge of security, ship contents, hiring longshoreman or ship contents. He is only in charge of making money and running contracts.

    If a radical sheik wanted to import a dirty nuke to the US, he doesnt need to buy the port, just ship the nuke. Set it to explode off shore and wammo NY is gone.

    So, you tell the Arab government of Dubai, sorry, you have the money, follow the rules, comply with our requirements and support our war operations, but, you are a bunch of sicko Arabs and we cant let you buy a PRIVATE British owned bussiness that operates in the US. How in hell can we expect any Arab country to ever do bussiness with us again?

    Please, not every Arab country is a terrorist country. Yes 2 of the 19 were from the UAE. Richard Reid is british, Jihad John Linn is American. Yes, terrorist money went thru their banks. It also went thru German banks and US banks.

  12. Dubai is an economic marvel that is trying to expand into markets worldwide, Rey, esp. Western markets. It would be incredibly bad business to install a radical anything in any consequential position at a multinational. Not to say it can’t happen, but it is highly unlikely. These guys are beholden to stockholders who are much more interested in making cash than spreading revolution. Again, a port attack can happen anytime, regardless of who runs it; it is our biggest vulnerability. Maybe the Coast Guard should stop impeding Cubans looking for freedom and redeploy those resources to secure the ports better.

  13. Rey, I changed your comment to reflect that I was the one misinformed, not Val, since he did not write the piece.

    While I can understand your desire to be fair to these folks, I am not willing to give them said luxury. I have lived my entire life in the shadow of the conflict in the Middle East — from the year of my birth almost fifty years ago with the Suez crisis, to this very day and Shiite mosques being blown up by Sunni insurgents in Iraq. There has been nothing but blood, pain and conflict coming out of there for fourteen hundred years and the root cause is Islamic imperalism. Period. They have a history that they cannot deny. I’m sorry. They have to a lot of work to do to change and mend fences — the way the Germans and Japanese did after we utterly destroyed them in World War II.

    The Arabs have shown an inclination to support the most radical elements in their societies by paying them off to avoid destruction themselves. I may be describing the Saudis and not the emirates, but it does not take a huge leap of deductive reasoning to know what they’d do if faced with a Jihadist element in their own countries.

    They may be fine folks for all I know; all I am saying that caution should be the order of the day.

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  15. I was initially skeptical, but after watching General Tommy Franks being interviewed on Fox the other night, I’m much more accepting of the changeover.

    Gen. Franks basically said that Dubai has one of the largest ports outside the US in the entire world, and it has been run exceptionally well. This along with the other comments which have already been made is why I don’t see a problem.

  16. The way I see it we are looking at snakes in sheep?s clothing. Dubai is an Islamic state and while they may appear more progressive and tolerant than some of their neighbors, do not doubt their true nature. Two of the 19 9/11 hijackers were Dubai citizens, there is evidence that some of the money financing the 9/11 terrorists went through Dubai banks. Not to mention that Dubai, one of the seven sheikdoms in the U.A.E., does not recognize Israel and officially bars Israeli passport holders from entering the country.

  17. * I don’t think your vote was wasted in ’96 for Harry Browne- one has to do what believes to be right, and in my opinionat that point in history, it was probably the best thing to do.

    * I agree with you…the LP is not the party in times of war.

    * I don’t think flat tax is enough…fair tax would be more like it. I think people need to be rewarded -not punished- for making as much money as they can. This simple principle may be the formula for the best economy this country has ever experienced.

  18. Guys, I got this from Latino Pundit

    UPDATE
    This is disturbing. I got this in an email from “Latinos For America.”

    UAE background:

    – Partially funded 9/11 attack according to FBI
    – 2 of the 9/11 hijackers were from the UAE (Fayez Banihammad & Marwan al-Shehhi)
    – Prevented seizure of Bin Laden’s assets after 9/11 (US Treasury)
    – Is the banking conduit to Al qaeda in the U.S. (9/11 Commission Report)
    – One of 3 countries that officially recognized the Taliban
    – Conduit of AQ Khan nuclear secrets to N. Korea
    – Conduit of illegal nuclear components to Iran, N. Korea and Lybia.
    – Among worst countries in human trafficking, and human rights

  19. Something smells rotten here. I don’t know what but I don’t understand why a NON-ARAB company can’t have our business. Why tempt fate?

  20. Nurian, thanks for the three points. I think my vote was wasted because I was an idealist when I made it. I have since learned that most (political) idealists are dreamers with no foothold on the reality of the world. Thank God my flirtation with it was brief…

  21. CHIMPY MC HITLERBURTON!!!!

    Or of coure, it could be “keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer.”

    The beauty of it is that it’s geopolitics. No one ever knows what the (insert 4 letter word here) is going on.

    I have plenty of beefs with this administration and from what I’ve read, this aint one of them yet.

    Then again, it could be that Chimpy Mc Hitlerburton actually IS the Manchurian Candidate, but i still smell possum.

  22. You voted for CLINTON to spite Bush I?

    Isn’t that like sawing Mr. Happy off to spite your wife?

    Dumb, George. Forgive me, but there is no other word for it.

  23. I have kicked myself in the ass every day for for 14 years for making such a stupid error in judgement. I’ve made up for it by loudly denouncing just about every Democrat that crosses my path.

    Other than buying that damn hydrogen-filled inflatable doll, I consider it the worst error in judgement I’ve ever made.

    Go ahead, kick me. I’ll join in.

  24. Ok, It’s several hours since I read the Chimpy McHitlerburton comment and now I can’t stop laughing and I have a stitch in my side. Good thing *I* don’t drink coffee.

    Claudia

  25. George,

    I fall more to the libertarian / free markets side of the argument. I think this a gigantic hot air balloon that enemies of the president are using to make the Michael Moore conspiracy theories look legitimate and some supporters of the president have been sucked in because they don’t know any better. It’s all a big joke being driven by the big MSM. The guy Cheney shot didn’t die so they have to move on the next story.

  26. By the way George on the other parts of your post not related to the port, I agree 100%. The reason I’m mad at Bush is because he’s not conservative enough. And Ventanita, for many years the official platform of Republicans was to do away with the Federal Dept. of Education. Republicans believe that education decisions should be made at the state and local levels not at the federal centralized level. About 80% of all education money is raised at the local level not the federal level. As federal ed spending increases so does their defacto control over curricula, etc. Bad news because the further away the bureaucrats are, the less influence John Q. Public has over them. And the reason healthcare is so screwed up is because the consumer of healthcare today is not the purchaser. Third parties pay, whether it’s the insurance companies or Medicare which is merely a federally subsidized insurance company (with all the waste, innefficiency and opportunity for fraud that that entails). In fact the federal government is the largest purchaser of healthcare in the country and it screws up the normal market forces that would create a more responsive system.

  27. George – don’t kick yourself too hard about your ’92 vote. I always regret not having registered to vote in ’76 in order to support Ford against Carter. Still kicking myself over that one. Musta had goober peas inside the skull.
    But the mistake has never been repeated.

    Wish I coulda been allowed to vote for Nixon in ’60!

  28. Thought I would jump in …

    I was totally against the deal at first. It was entirely because the company is Arab/Muslim. Of course, I came to realize that as long as the US agencies like the Coast Guard do their jobs OBL could own the contract and we’d be safe. So then I went to the side of the “I’m OK with the deal.” (This was within about an hour.)

    Then Jimmy Carter came out in favor of the deal. So I am against it again.
    If Jimmy Carter thinks it will be OK then there MUST be a problem with it.

    Incidentally, why does the MSM have to piss me off daily by asking former (dem) presidents their opinions of current events? We know they are in love with Carter and Clinton, must they annoy me constantly by forcing me to know what they think? I don’t care what they think. Even if I didn’t think they were jerks they are nobodies at best, traitors at worst. Thank you for letting me vent on that last point.

  29. I was totally against the deal, too, at first – now I’m just not sure. Last night on Hugh Hewitt’s show, which I don’t think you get in Miami – Hugh grilled (and I mean grilled like a prosecutor)several supporters of the President’s positon, including Austin Bay, Mark Steyn, Robert Kaplan, and Robert Ferrigno. He also interviewed James Lileks who is opposed to the deal.

    Transcripts of the interviews and mp3 files of the audio are availiable on his producer’s website http://www.radioblogger.com.

    I highly recommend taking a look.

  30. the one issue i really disagree with you on is israel.. i think blind support of israel is what has gotten us in to the mess we are in in the middle east.. it helped lead to the embargo in the 70’s, and some of the problems we face today.. of course israel has a right to exist, as do the palestinians have a right to a homeland.. ans israel aint no babe in the woods, remember jonathan pollard? israel strikes back (to defend, as well they should) but they take out more “innocents”, plenty of “collateral damage” when they go after their intended target.. then we turn around and support them, of course it leaves resentment against us.. most everything else, especially from an economics point of view, i agree with in varying degrees.. but dont think that your vote was wasted,
    EVER.. you voted and that is what is most important.. think of those who cant or even worse dont vote.. you voted and that is what matters

  31. So we sit back and settle for the lesser of two evils until the lesser is equal to the other?
    I believe that a little pain from a protest vote will go a long way in regaining the party. We have already sold out Cuba by supporting this administration. Will we now sell out America?
    The next Republican candidate better be a fresh new face or I’m sitting this one out.

  32. We have already sold out Cuba by supporting this administration.

    As opposed to….what?

    Think kerry would have done a better job with Cuba?

    or Howard Dean?

    perspective, folks. perspective.

  33. Pototo, I agree with Val. I made it very clear in my piece that despite my differences with the administration, the alternative is too awful to comtemplate. Voters like you (and me in 1992 and 1996) commit the unpardonable sin of being idealists and not realists. I, for one, will NEVER, EVER make that error again.

  34. Daniel, what’s wrong with supporting the only democracy in the region, the only free-market capitalist country in the region, the only country that DOES NOT export a philosophy that calls for the death of unbelievers?

    (BTW, the Palestinians do have a homeland: it’s called Jordan. Read your history.)

  35. Posted by Alisa:

    “Then Jimmy Carter came out in favor of the deal. So I am against it again.
    If Jimmy Carter thinks it will be OK then there MUST be a problem with it.”

    ja! ja! So very true!!!

  36. Val, when Chuck Schumer says that he’ll take Halliburton over Dubai Ports World, you know the end of the world is nigh…

    Chimpy McHitlerburton strikes again?

  37. iwhat i meant was that blind support of them has led to many problems for the us.. if they are our friends, why have pollard do what he did? i think we should be wary of BOTH sides in that conflict.. and you know, in the palestinian homeland issue, pointing to jordan is not the complete story.. the funny thing is, you could say the palestinians are the “jews” of the muslim world.. again, let me reiterate the statement, i think support if israel has caused more harm than good.. perhaps a more distanced approach would have been better.. and even with the support we gave, they still spied on us..

  38. Hey Alisa I totally agree with you on the peanut man. This might be wrong of me; but sometimes when I don’t know all the facts in the issue, as soon as peanut man & i-never-inhaled guy say the are For It — that automatically makes me be Against It. As far as the Dubai company & our ports is concerned, why tempt fate and let the wolf among the sheep. And Rey, it’s OK w/me if we NEVER do business with ANY Arab country.

  39. Daniel, I take exception to the idea that the “Palestinians” could be called the Jews of the Muslim world. I get your point, but please. It’s fanatical blind hatred of Jews that have them in the position they’re in. If you want to label them please choose a different word, comparing them to Jews is offensive.

  40. Daniel, and I’m not even going to start on the support for the “blind” support for Israel who’s been screwed over plenty but sucessive US administrations in lots of ways and Pollard? What he did was wrong period, but the sentence is harsh.

  41. What matters MOST to me is Cuba. I would never vote for Kerry, but I’m not so sure it would have been that different. I think that is truly a painful reality. Maybe losing to a nut like Kerry would have gotten the GOP’s attention. But maybe not. Right now, especially today Cuba is what matters most!

  42. Hi George.

    I just wanted to share with you all a couple of things I learned recently:

    Jihad literally means something like “daily struggle,” or “striving for self-improvement” to be on the righteous path of God. It has been taken to mean ‘holy war’; but how can it be holy to Muslims if through the Qur’an God said that war is a “hateful matter”? War in classical Islam is the last resort.

    Rules of ‘Jihad’ as dictated by Islam (Qur’an, Sunna, etc.)

    -NO compulsory conversion. (Yes, in Muslim history there have been taxes imposed on non-believers, but only on adult males who are ABLE to pay.)
    -if your counterpart offers you peace, the order of God is to accept it (Qur’an Ch. 4, Verse 90.)
    -always with intentions to help the poor and oppressed.
    -has to be for a ‘good cause’ and for the sake of God
    -above mentioned circumstances to be assessed by a legitimate authority/state, NOT Bin Laden. No individual can launch jihad for his own purposes.
    -not permanent state of war, has to stop once peace is offered.
    -cannot target women, children, old people, etc.

    HHmmmm…Can you believe it? I was a little surprised when I learned this. You know what I gather from this? That the issue is more COMPLEX than the black/white view of Muslims.

    Of course, there are those very high-profile radical elements, and and with EXTENSIVE media coverage things are misconstrued to represent something they do not. I am no expert on Islam, or the Middle East, ni nada por el estilo. Solo soy una cubanita en un aula. But I just learned that in class a couple of days ago, and I thought it would be wise to add it in order to balance out and contextualize your comments and this whole debate.
    I know this has nothing to do with the ports or Dubai, or how much I dislike Bush = ) – please do not stone me to death – but I just thought that because of your comments, this would be interesting. Just thought I’d exercise that freedom of expression which I was denied the first 12 years of my life. I am NOT trying to feud with anyone in the Cuban-American community because we are divided enough as it is.

    Saludos a todos!

  43. Sanchez6, the fact that you are at Harvard tells me a lot. Heaven forbid they teach something that’s true for fear of offending some nameless group. You are definitely reading the wrong books on Islam. If you read Karen Armstrong and other apologists then you’ll get just what you regurgitated; however, there is a lot of scholarship out there that is ignored by academia because it does not fit the “religion of peace” paradigm that they’ve been trying to ram down our throats for decades. And your heads of departments are probably all pro-Palestinian/anti-Israel so that, of course, automatically invalidates their “objectivity” in discussing the issue. I admit I am not objective. They don’t.

    Start with the sources: read the Koran and the Hadith. Read them well. You’ll find all of the passages that give a lie to what you have learned. Especially, the Hadith.

    BTW, do you know what a dhimmi is?

  44. Sanchez6 … sweety, darling … please stop listening to what professors tell you. 9 times out of 10 they are wrong or lying. Would you like some more Quran quotes?

    Surah 4: 6-9
    “Allah will bestow a vast reward on those who fight in religious wars.
    Believers fight for Allah; disbelievers fight for the devil. So fight the minions of the devil.
    Have no unbelieving friends. Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them.
    If the unbelievers do not offer you peace, kill them wherever you find them. Against such you are given clear warrant.”

    And how about Surah 5, 9
    “If you refuse to fight, Allah will inflict you with a painful doom.”
    10 is nice too …
    “Fight the disbelievers and hypocrites. Be harsh with them. They are all going to hell anyway.”
    Oh and then there is 13 and 14 in the same Surah ..
    “Don’t pray for idolaters (not even for your family) after it is clear they are people of hell-fire.
    Fight disbelievers who are near you, and let them see the harshness in you.”

    You need to understand what really going on in the world. The professors and apologists are trying to lull you into a false sense of security. You seriously are a dhimmi. It’s really sad.

    Do you think that Cuba will be better off is Islamofacism succeeds? Seriously, honey, wake up. Fidel is better than Islam because he, at least, allows the people to eat pork products and drink rum. Too bad there isn’t any.

    Please don’t think that I am minimizing the Fidel problem. But seriously … “radical” Muslims actually scare me more.

  45. Thanks for your input guys. As I said I am not an expert in this, I just started learning about it and I’m definitely open to every bit of information. I feel better knowing that you are much better informed. But thanks also for making my point that it is a complex issue. You can find literature on both sides of the argument (and all of it is biased to a certain extent.) I was not saying that Muslims are angels. What I was trying to say is that I think it’s better to take all things into account instead of propagating one extreme point of view that generates even more hate…but that’s just my opinion – which might seem a little too ‘hippie’ to you, but hey let me enjoy my foolish young idealism while it lasts- and you guys don’t need to be concerned about it.

    Oh, Thanks – again – for calling me a dhimmi, nice touch; and the ‘sweet darling’ thing – I immensely appreciate all the love you guys show. Thanks for your appreciation of my liberal arts education…yes I’m not that naive, I know there are biases. I also know that there are many other factors that complicate, and nearly placate any virtue that my ‘hippie’ argument might have. I just thought it was a curious point of view that I, at least, had never heard before in traditional communication media.

    Alisa, no personal attacks on my part, but I like how you call people ‘sad.’ It’s ok, I understand you saw a great opportunity to get the naive, idealistic peace-and-free-love-advocating college student off her high horse.

    Last thing, though…did I ever say anything to imply a connection between Cuba and the success of ‘Islamofacism’? Don’t, ‘honey’, don’t go there. I am awake, and trying to learn about things that affect the world I live in, which is more than a lot of people can say. Thanks for the encouragement.

    Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to go back to my schoolwork, which is – I think we all agree on this – what I should stick to doing.

  46. I didn’t call you a dhimmi; I just asked if you knew what the term meant. Alisa makes a valid point, however, in that all of the folks who are exposed to the ersatz Islam they learn from the apologists are being prepared for precisely that: dhimmihood. I refuse to be a slave regardless of who the master is…

  47. Sanchez, it’s great that you’re trying to get both sides of the story but you are in a place where frequently it isn’t offered or, more frequently, not accepted or allowed. Dissent of any kind is in these “halls of learning” is handled in ways that would make Fidel proud. There is a great deal of pressure on students to conform to what professors, adminstrators and a large number of already indoctrinated students feel is the way we all should live. Debate is rarely honestly allowed. The fact that you are seeking another side shows that, perhaps, you have seen through these people. I did too.

    I am Cuban-American and raised in California. I went to San Francisco State University to get a degree in International Relations. The professors there would tell us over and over how fabulous Fidel is. One professor even said that her husband only has to fear her cheating on him with one man. It was sickening to me. There were teachers that would tell full out lies about what goes on in Cuba. But when I would speak out I was told, in essence, that since I was Cuban I didn’t know the truth. That’s right … having family still there made me an unreliable source. They and their books knew the facts. Their arguments, to those who didn’t know, were quickly accepted. I imagine my former classmates still believe all the rhetoric. I was written off as some kind of zealot because I thought Castro was wrong.

    With the current trends of the “radical” Islamists there is still the rhetoric being spouted in classrooms. People are still trying to push Islam as “The Religion of Peace.” This despite the words written in the Quran and the examples of peace being shown all over the world. And with their violence comes the call for nations that are traditionally secular after a history of Christianity to adopt sharia law. A man in Germany was convicted last week of “insulting Islam.” If this does not frighten you to your core than you are missing something really big. Ask the young girl, Nazanin, in Iran what she thinks of Sharia law as she wait to be hanged for stabbing and killing one of three men who tried to rape her one night in Tehran.

    I am really glad that you are seeking answers beyond the university. Sadly, if you try to tell your professors what you learn outside of the classroom (that is opposite to what they say) you will be called a racist. What you say will be called intolerant and/or hate speech. Trust me. I lived it.

    As for the sweety, darling thing, that’s just the way I talk. I won’t apologize for that. It sounds better than “dude.”

  48. Alisa,I really do appreciate you clarifying that and explaining why you think the way you do. This is definitely an ongoing process for me. I hate settling for one point of view.

    Thanks George 😉

    Best wishes to both of you.

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