Samuel Johnson once said that “patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.” Patriotism, and bad analogies.
For the uninitiated, Godwin’s Law is one of the cardinal rules of the Internet. Coined in 1990 by Internet law expert Mike Godwin, the principle — confirmed by countless contentious comment threads across the web — is that the longer an online discussion persists, the greater the odds become that someone will make a comparison to Nazis or Adolf Hitler, to the point of near-inevitability. Nothing ends a debate faster than the hyperbolic unsupported counterfactual: “You know who else did [INSERT SUBJECT OF ARGUMENT HERE]? Hitler!”
We get this all the time…usually from teachers unions…they used it against Anne Tolley and are yet to deploy it against Hekia Parata…only a matter of time though.
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But Hitler and the Nazis aren’t the only recurring straw men used to end debates. Over the past 12 years, it’s become clear that the longer a national security debate persists, the more likely it becomes that someone will try to end it by suggesting something — some policy, some person, some technology — “could have prevented 9/11.” (more…)
The left likes to exclaim that nothing has changed in Afghanistan.
Foreign Policy magazine has a photo essay on women in Afghanistan that disproves that….but it is all at risk if the Taliban return:
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Since the fall of the Taliban in 2001, Afghan women have gained the rights to vote, work, and pursue an education. They’re running for president, they’ve claimed seats in parliament, and they’ve even competed in the Olympics. But international troops are due to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of 2014, and the Taliban threatens to step into the vacuum they’ll leave behind. Already, writes Amie Ferris-Rotman in an FP dispatch from Kabul, many of the women who’ve come so far — journalists, politicians, and rights workers, among others — have begun to retreat from public life out of fear for their safety. “Once the Americans go we’ll have to sit at home again, bored,” First Lieutenant Zakiya Mohammadi tells Ferris-Rotman.
The “last decade produced a league of knowledgeable, determined young women for whom the Taliban’s return is anathema,” Ferris-Rotman writes. Here’s a look at women across post-Taliban Afghanistan — from the campaign trail to the basketball court to the operating room.
Harry, or Captain Wales as he is known has given a frank discussion of his time in Afghanistan:
Prince Harry should be commended rather than criticised for his unfiltered reflections on his 20-week tour of duty in Afghanistan as a co-pilot gunner on an Apache helicopter.
Rather than hide behind euphemisms or portray the mission as a high-minded, essentially humanitarian exercise, Harry (who goes by the nom de guerre Captain Wales) freely admitted he’d killed Taleban fighters and likened his battlefront experiences to playing video games.
While his comments have been predictably deplored, I’d suggest he performed a public service by reminding us of the brutal reality of war-time soldiering.
He’s a professional soldier, as opposed to what many monarchists would prefer: a pretend soldier acquiring gold braid and giveaway ribbons to go with his other entitlements, while leaving the nasty, dangerous job of engaging the enemy to commoners. And a soldier’s job is to kill or facilitate the killing of the enemy.
Correct…it is the job of soliders, or in this case combat helicopter operators to make sure as many bad bastards die hard as possible in order to keep our guys safe.
Notwithstanding the apparent desire of successive governments to transform our military into a sort of uniformed branch of Volunteer Service Abroad, Harry has reminded us that its core function is fighting.
Of course the enemy sees their job in a similar light, hence the saying “kill or be killed” or, as Harry put it, “take a life to save a life”.
Judging by the reaction to the deaths of five of our soldiers in Afghanistan last August, some Kiwis appear to believe that being killed while on active service in a war zone is like being flattened by a runaway hay bale while going for a walk in the countryside: a desperately unfortunate freak occurrence.
The other widely expressed view was that our soldiers shouldn’t have died because they shouldn’t have been in Afghanistan in the first place. That raises the question of what would constitute a just war, a cause worth sacrificing lives for. There are those who give the impression that they would object to lives being put on the line for anything short of resisting an invasion by P-crazed cannibals from outer space.
This mindset reduces the armed forces to a purely ornamental function.
I can’t believe I am reading this in the Herald..but there it is, a frank account of the panty-waist attitude of the hand-wringers…and the reality of war from Prince Harry.
It has to be said that Harry’s reference to video games included an unfortunate choice of words: “It’s a joy for me because I’m one of those people who loves playing PlayStation and Xbox, so with my thumbs I like to think that I’m probably quite useful.”
Well, quite, your highness, although perhaps “joy” is ever so slightly unseemly in this context.
But again, in his gauche way, Harry has put his thumb on it: the further removed from the death scene the killer is, the more warfare becomes virtual combat.
There is joy in a job well done.
BONUS VIDEO: 2 Apaches Engage a Group of Taliban fighters setting up to ambush a U.S. special forces patrol.
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Oh how wonderful from the religion of peace.
A Saudi cleric is advocating gang rape of women, as young as 14, so that soldiers can feel sexually satisfied.
Remind me again how we should be tolerant of Islam:
An influential Saudi cleric has called for the gang rape of Syrian women to give “warriors of Islam” fighting in the war-torn country some sexual relief.
Muhammed al-Arifi, described by news site AlterNet which carried the news as a “leading jihadist religious figure”, says militants should enter short-term “intercourse marriages” of only a few hours “in order to give each fighter a turn”.
Any females over the age of 14 are considered eligible “brides”, says al-Arifi, who claims it has “been two years since the jihadists were last with women”, according to a report. His fatwa would “boost the determination of the mujahideen in Syria and is considered a duty to enter paradise for those females who enter such marriages”.
The blog started Saturday by having a look at a number of Christchurch people taking pictures up women’s skirts at malls. And wouldn’t you know it? A teacher was arrested as well. Iain Lees-Galloway shows he is a slimy git by opening a Burger King and then refusing to take a bite, preferring to preach sensible food choices. Cam then called for nominations for Worst Political Journalist, and Barry Soper and John Campbell appeared hot favourites. Next we had a vote on Best Political Journalist, which Larry Williams took out with a massive 47% of the vote. Graham McCready withdrew litigation against John Banks because it made no sense to anyone – as in – they couldn’t understand what it said. Whale then claims a win on his Hekia Parata predictions and wonders why Key has let this train wreck happen. We raise our eyebrows about Nelson looking for a scooter riding bottom pincher and then watch a video of what happens to a pig at the bottom of the sea over 7 days. Next a post where Greens are fighting Greens over the Google solar plant. On the one side: solar energy. On the other? Turtles. Charles Krauthammer explains why gun control alone isn’t the solution to mass shootings. A MENSA spokesperson calls people with low IQs carrots and the BBC feels they have to apologise. There is a property for sale next to Kim Dotcom‘s place. Cam suggests the GCSB or the US should have bought it to set up spying operations. WOBH is calling for The Whale Army to send in their holiday snaps, in a new feature called Snapped! Cam takes a brief look at who will enter parliament if Tim Groser leaves for the WTO. To close the day, a WhaleTech post looks at a the cull-de-sac that’s the QII roll-up keyboard. (more…)Comment On This Article
PRINCE Harry has killed his first Taliban commander, The Sun can reveal.
The 28-year-old gunship co-pilot was called on to unleash a missile strike to eliminate a senior terror leader.
Harry has proved a massive hit with comrades in Helmand, Afghanistan, who have nicknamed him Big H.
A defence insider said: “Big H is a legend.
“We were on patrol and the Apache helicopters were called in. We heard this posh voice come over the radio and knew it was Big H. They were tracking a Taliban leader — he was commander level.
“The Apache then let off some Hellfire missiles and its 30mm cannon and ‘boom’. It was Big H all the way.”
The Sun understands the decisive strike occurred in late October during a partnered patrol with Afghan troops hunting the Taliban chief.
Gunship co-pilot Harry is on tour in Helmand and has been flying daily combat missions helping “troops in contact” — the code given when ground forces are engaged by enemy fighters.
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There is nothing better than watching supposed allies tear each other apart publicly. Witness the green on green bitch fight happening in the US over one of Google’s solar plants. This is a case of the Green Taliban taking on the Green Illuminati:
One big problem with renewable energy projects is that they have to go somewhere. They have to occupy a part of the very environment that their proponents are often trying to save.
Photographer Jamey Stillings beautifully captures this tension in his images of the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System (ISEGS). Located in Southern California’s Mojave Desert, the plant aims to eventually be the largest solar thermal power plant in the world – making enough electricity to run 140,000 homes all by focusing the sun’s energy to create steam.
Problem is, the system is located smack in the middle of the threatened desert tortoise habitat and the companies that built the system have already had to allocate $56 million to care for and relocate these ground dwellers. At least one major environmental group has argued the plant should have never been built on its current location.
If it isn’t tortoises it is bloody snails. Guess how many tortoises have been saved for $56 million?
To date Hunter says 144 tortoises (77 adults, 67 juveniles) have been found on site and all 77 adults have been relocated.
“Caring for the tortoise is something we take very seriously,” she says.
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The Green Taliban are weapons grade hypocrites, but they also like to cover themselves with the shield of sanctimony.
After the Green Taliban’s blatant display of rank hypocrisy on Firstline by criticising fuel tax increases, I went through their policy pages to count up the new taxes, charges and compliance costs that they are proposing.
On a conservative analysis, they are proposing at least 20 new transport taxes, and more than 50 new taxes and charges across the board.
The next time the Greens try to get a cheap shot in the mainstream media by complaining about price rises, real journalists might like to consider this extensive (and sometimes frightening) list.Comment On This Article
It used to be that we complained about evangelists and called then god botherers…they seem innocuous in comparison to the army of green evangelists, whom I call the Green Taliban, who are proselytising their message.
People are waking up to the Green Taliban though:
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Charles Dickens must be turning in his grave. We have a government that tells struggling families here at home to buck up and shell out to build wind farms in the developing world. Here, there are mothers worrying about stretching a very limited budget to cover Christmas lunch, with turkey and trimmings, and presents that don’t all come from PoundLand; but the Coalition doesn’t worry about the hardships under its nose, concentrating instead on those who suffer in distant lands. Dickens would have recognised this instantly as Mrs Jellaby charity – the mother in Bleak House who is obsessed with charitable work for the missions, while her own brood is starving in her kitchen.
How did this tragicomic state of affairs come to pass? The Tories (some of them at least) got not God but Green.
Fanatical, self-righteous, and bent on evangelisation, the green religion stalks the land. Its priests preach apocalyptic visions of a future so bleak that ordinary mortals fear for our lives – even in the face of evidence to the contrary. Now, the green lobby want to spread the word to the Third World. Yes, let there be wind turbines across Africa, and low carbon farming across Colombia! And let it all happen with the British taxpayer footing the bill – to the tune of £2 billion!