As the needle bends

A world view thru my hobbit hole door

Mr. Ahmadinejad, you have a lot of nerve.

As he pulls the string of the puppet forces, Hamas and Hezbollah, that Iran has in place attacking Israel on two fronts, President Ahmadinejad had the audacity to say such preposterous things as the following, from Arutz Sheva:

“Israel has pushed the button of its own destruction,” said the Iranian president, who pulls the strings of its terrorist proxies on both of Israel’s fronts. “The Zionists made their worst decision and triggered their extinction by attacking Lebanon.”

Ahmadinejad, addressing the 23rd Iranian Islamic Republic’s nationwide meeting of the heads of educational bureaus, advised Jewish Israelis “to pack up and move out of the region before being caught in the fire they have started in Lebanon.”

When faced with the continuing attacks on both its citizenry and its soldiers, culminating with the killing of several soldiers and kidnapping of one into Gaza, and 2 into Lebanon, what was Israel suppose to do? I don’t believe that telling its citizens to line up and take a number, and wait to be the next sacrificial lamb to the ungodly determination of the Islamists to wipe Jews and/or Israel off the face of the planet, is acceptable. And that is what a lack of response to these acts would equal.

An acquaintance on another blog posted that he believes that diplomacy could hold the answer. He theorized that, surely, there is some way to negotiate a fair and equitable end to the violence which seems destined to spiral into the absolute annihilation of life from the portions of Lebanon which have been controlled for far too long by Hezbollah, and from the Gaza Strip – from which Ariel Sharon withdrew in an unsuccessful effort to appease the lust of the Palestinians to remove Israel from their "home lands." There is one great problem with that theory. With whom do you negotiate for peace and reason, when the efforts of one side to appease have resulted in nothing but more and more violence and death, wrought by a people or an ideology which has but one purpose – to terrorize and annihilate the Jewish state (and all "infidels") and that people and ideology espouses a belief that to die in that effort is to secure their own glory for ever and ever?

So, Mr. Ahmadinejad, you have a lot of nerve to say that Israel has pushed the button of its own destruction.  I suppose, in your mind, that destruction was guaranteed one day in 1948, when Israel was granted the land which has historically been its homeland, and through which the nomadic Palestinians moved at will, before arbitrary borders were established. And I believe in my heart of hearts that God will not allow Israel’s destruction, so you might do well to be wary of which buttons you push.

As The Needle Bends

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July 23, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 1 Comment

Hezbollah, Iran, and other reasons I have severe indigestion (Updated July 14, 2006)

July 14, 2006 20:00CDT

When I originally put the following entry on my blog back in April, little did I imagine what the events of the past few weeks involving Israel, Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran, and other things virtually guaranteed to give me worse indigestion than I originally had back in April!

Hamas attacking through tunnels from Gaza, and kidnapping an Israeli soldier, only to be followed a couple of weeks later by Hezbollah doing virtually the same from Lebanon sounds like a script for "24" or some other far-fetched fiction, as does Israel "taking out" the airport in Beirut in response, instead of something off the news wires, like this:

Hizbollah, Israel head for showdown

By Lin Noueihed

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Residents on both sides of the Lebanese-Israeli border braced on Saturday for a dramatic spike in violence after Hizbollah’s chief declared open war on Israel following its bombardment of his Beirut home and stronghold.

“You wanted open war. We are going to open war,” Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said in a call to Hizbollah television.

"Look at it burn", he urged listeners, announcing an attack which set ablaze an Israeli warship that had earlier hit Beirut.

Four Israeli troops were missing after the attack, which comes amid the bloodiest violence in Lebanon in over a decade, started by a cross-border attack on Wednesday in which Hizbollah guerillas captured two Israeli soldiers and killed eight.

The Israeli army later said that a civilian boat, possibly from Egypt, was hit by a missile in the same attack that badly damaged the Israeli warship.

I don’t know who Lin Noueihed is, but since this article was posted on Reuters after Israeli airstrikes took out the Hezbollah "headquarters" in Beirut, and rockets of varying degrees of sophistication have been flying across the border of Lebanon and Israel thicker than termites in a southeast Texas heatwave, I’d say Lin is a master of understatement.

I don’t know which country will claim the second ship hit in this incident; but I have a feeling that they will likely not be pleased. Heck, the way everything else has been going the past couple of days, I’m sure it’ll be blamed on Israel.

And why is it that nobody can agree on how to spell Hezbollah/Hizbollah/Hezbulah, anyway????

Original Post from late April, 2006:

As I read through the events, concerns, and rantings from around the world during the week just past, I am struck by several things, all of which give me really bad heartburn, and some which add greatly to my anxiety over the condition of the world. Iran continues its nuclear sabre-rattling, with President Unpronouncable making daily statements, each a little more over the top than the last.

“Those who want to prevent Iranians from obtaining their right, should know that we do not give a damn about such resolutions,” Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told a rally in northwest Iran, the official IRNA news agency reported. “Enemies think that by … threatening us, launching psychological warfare or … imposing embargos they can dissuade our nation from obtaining nuclear technology.” This week Iran vowed to hit U.S. targets worldwide if attacked by Washington, which has not ruled out military options if diplomacy fails to halt what it says is Tehran’s quest for nuclear weapons. Iran says its programme is purely civilian.

Then there was the speech he made on Iranian television, salient points of which I include here:

“… Let’s assume that the [Holocaust] were true – who should be punished for this? This is a serious question facing contemporary humanity. “… Although they claim that their hearts bleed for the Jews, during World War II and following it they caused the widespread phenomenon of anti-Judaism in two or three European countries. If you support the Jews – how do you explain this anti-Judaism? Why did you turn Europe in its entirety into a place unsafe for the Jews? Could there possibly be any other reason than creating unsafe conditions for the Jews, so that they would flee and find shelter in Palestine? “Why do you think they are safe in Palestine? These people, who left their homelands as a result of your pressure and anti-Judaism, went to a country that did not belong to them. Different minorities from different countries came to live side by side, just like pieces of paper joined together with a paper clip. They live in an atmosphere of insecurity on a daily basis. I’ve said this once, and I’ll say it again: Open the gates of this big prison. Allow these people to decide freely, and you will see that they will return to their homelands. Of course, you must first let go of your anti-Judaism…”

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July 14, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 3 Comments

Israel’s Olmert calls Hizbullah kidnapping of 2 soldiers “Act of War”

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, on Wednesday, called Hizbullah’s latest outrage “an act of war.” It appears that Hizbullah targeted a tank, and two IDF jeeps, patrolling Israel’s northern border, with Lebanon, killing seven soldiers and injuring several more when the tank struck a roadside bomb or land mine. Reports in Arutz Sheva state that emergency response to the targeted vehicles was delayed by fears the area, and perhaps the vehicles themselves, had been mined by the terrorists, and that when the emergency workers arrived, they found 2 of the IDF soldiers missing.

Details of the attack indicate that an army tank hit a land mine or a roadside bomb, trapping soldiers inside, in addition to a Hizbullah mortar shell that struck two Hammer jeeps. Rescue efforts were delayed because of fears that the area was mined with more explosives planted by the terrorists.

IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz stated that “the period of quiet” has ended for Hizbullah in Lebanon. Military sources said that the Israeli retaliation to the Hizbullah attack and apparent kidnapping of IDF soldiers will be extremely strong.

IDF forces are active inside Lebanon, searching for the kidnapped soldiers, and reservists are being called up, as this action basically opens up a second front from the actions of the past week or so in Gaza.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert declared during a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi Wednesday afternoon that the Hizbullah attack was an “act of war” and not terror. He called it an unprovoked assault by a sovereign nation and held Lebanon, where Hizbullah has a minister in the government, fully responsible.

“Israel’s response will be restrained but very, very, very painful,” Olmert said.

The Defense Ministry confirmed early Wednesday afternoon that two IDF soldiers had been kidnapped by Hizbullah. IDF ground troops had been sent into Lebanon to search for the two. IAF jets, helicopters and UAVs were also flying above Lebanon searching for the soldiers. Simultaneously, Navy gunboats were shelling Hizbullah targets in Lebanon.

As The Needle Bends

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July 12, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | Leave a comment

Negotiating with terrorists – Israel between a rock and a hard place

During the game of “chicken” that has been the kidnapping, and negotiations for the release of Israeli soldier, Gilad Shalit, I found myself wondering if the women and children being  held in Israeli jails were not terrorists, why were they being held?  This weekend, I found a column on the Jerusalem Post’s website, by Barbara Sofer, which gave an insight to the reasons the women are being held, that I have not found elsewhere. The whole column gives a very interesting insight into life in Israel, in the face of repeated attacks, kidnappings and attempted kidnappings of “settlers” (like the fact that they are “just settlers” somehow marks them as fair game for terror), and the like. It gives a brief glimpse into the “Prisoner’s Letter” that has been going around the internet, that projects the view that, somehow, Corporal Shalit’s kidnapping was justified by the continued imprisonment of Palestinians, and in which the alleged author compares her father’s imprisonment to the Israeli soldier’s kidnapping. Then it gives a glimpse of the reasons for the imprisonment of some  women, whose transgressions are never hinted at when they are mentioned, like pawns in a chess game, as ransom for the kidnapped soldier.

In the Neveh Tirza women’s prison, for example, you’ll find Ahlan Tanimi, who brought the bomb that murdered 16 in the Sbarro pizza restaurant in Jerusalem. You’ll also find Kahira Sa’adi, a mother of four who drove a terrorist to King George Avenue, where he blew up three people. She has expressed her eagerness to do it again.

Others are wannabe Wafa Idris, who blew herself up on Jaffa Road in Jerusalem, or Hanady Jaradats, who killed 21 in the Maxim restaurant in Haifa. Even the non-feminists among us will probably agree that these prisoners deserve equal punishment.

This leads me to believe that, no matter what else he gets wrong or right, Ehud Olmert is spot on when he says that Israel will not, and cannot, negotiate with terrorist, no matter how precious the prize.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert went on a fiery offensive in Sunday’s cabinet meeting, aggressively defending the “graduated and measured” IDF action in Gaza, telling Sderot officials to start showing leadership, and sticking up for last summer’s Gaza disengagement.

In addition, he dismissed suggestions made Friday by his own Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter that Israel should consider releasing security prisoners to free Cpl. Gilad Shalit.

Olmert rebuffed criticism that the IDF was not being tough enough in Gaza, saying the army would employ a number of different methods there.

“There is no intention to reoccupy Gaza,” he said, “but there is a need for ground action.” He added that Israel “will continue to act – to go in and come out as needed. There will not be only one mode of operation.

"It is clear this will be a long, complex war," Olmert said, adding that he did not want to set out a timetable for the operation.

As The Needle Bends

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July 9, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 1 Comment

Trajectory of Taepodong II missile indicates it was aimed at/near Hawaii

An article in the Jerusalem Post states that Japanese and US officials, after studying the data from the long range missile launch on July 4, US time, conclude that the missile was aimed towards the 50th state, Hawaii. 

North Korea targeted waters near Hawaii when it fired a long-range missile this week, a Japanese newspaper reported Friday.

The long-range Taepodong-2 was part of a barrage of seven missiles test-fired by North Korea on Wednesday. They all fell harmlessly into the Sea of Japan, but South Korean officials said the long-range missile had malfunctioned, suggesting it was intended for a more remote target.

Japan’s conservative mainstream daily Sankei said that Japanese and US defense officials have concluded that the Taepodong-2 had been targeted US state of Hawaii in the Pacific Ocean, after analyzing data collected from their intelligence equipment.

The newspaper quoted unidentified Japanese and US government officials.

For several days, before the North Koreans actually lit the candle, it was widely reported that NORAD, and other military analysts, would be able to judge almost immediately, from the trajectory, where the missile was aimed. I suppose this was slowed down a bit when the missile failed some 40 seconds into flight. Now I suppose there will be even more speculation why the area near Hawaii was the chosen target, if indeed this was the case. I muddled through a bit of the translated article from Sankei, linked above, and they are guessing that it’s because of the US Pacific Fleet headquartering there, or perhaps just to send a message that parts of the US could be within range of their mischief. But who said that Kim Jung Il needs a logical reason. Perhaps he’d been watching on CNN that Americans were reporting that, if our analysis of the missile’s range were correct, Alaska could be a target, and just wanted to do something different.

As The Needle Bends

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July 6, 2006 Posted by | Life and Ramblings | 1 Comment