Thursday, July 21, 2005

Overt covert operations

While we're all strategically busy mulling over the Roberts' nomination, what else is up in the world?

We have the House Republicans
ramming through a renewal of the Patriot (sic) Act. Naturally, Republicans used the latest London bombings as fuel for the fire, as they clearly demonstrate how important it is to remove as many civil rights as possible from folks to keep AMERICA safe. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I'm sure that if England had passed a similar law and kept its shores safe from terrorists by being able to spy on library lending patterns, there would have been no bombing.

In our own war against terrorism, the US armed forces fatality (is that supposed to be a less inflammatory word than death?) count is at 1771. If figures have little meaning for you,'s War Room directed me to
this site for a more graphic illustration.

Since we're doing such a superb job fighting terrorism and insurgencies in Iraq, apparently it's time to
move on to Iran. The Bush administration has begun drawing up scenarios for such an attack, with Rumsfeld's participation and approval. There's clear and level-headed thinking. Many experts (including those in the military) feel we don't have enough troups in Iraq. So, let's send some of those much-needed troups to Iran, instead.

And if that doesn't make y'all think, think, and think again, head over to The New Republic Blogs, where Smith College Professor Eric Reeves has been giving a
public course in misery, otherwise known as the history of the Dafur genocide. Three facts to hang on to:
  1. 90 percent of all African villages (as opposed to Arab, which is the racial dividing line in Dafur) in Dafur have been destroyed.
  2. Between 350,00 and 400,000 people have died from all causes related to the genocide in Dafur (violence, malnutrition, and disease).
  3. 6000 people die each month. If the situation there becomes any more insecure or volatile, causing humanitarian efforts to cease (and this is a real possibility), estimates call for 100,000 people to die each month.
OK. Dafur is not being strategically hidden by the Roberts' oh so timely nomination. Maybe it's just hidden by our compassion burnout. Or by our inability to grasp such inhumanity. Our frustration at being able to do so little. Or our responsibility to do so much.

Institutions are busy arguing about whether or not the disaster in Dafur truly qualifies as "genocide". And, while I now understand (thanks to Professor Reeves' lucid explanations) why this is an important argument, semantics are literally killing people over there.

Back to your regularly scheduled interruption. Did you know that John Roberts help Dubya win the
good fight in Florida circa fall 2000? Now, that's a non-partisan activity if there ever was one. If you'd like to register your displeasure at the John Roberts nomination, go here and tell your President what you think.

Until tomorrow,


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