Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Happy Halloween!

Hey, Kids;

Wanna see something scary?
                                                            "I'm meltiiiiiing!"


"...can't...breathe!"





"Taklin' the Fifth"


"Carlos Did WHAT?"


















Wanna see something REALLY Scary?










But then this happened to the Evil Witch:

"Harder!"

And now it's the Happiest Halloween Ever!

                                                      hat tip: Triggered treat

Israel Day!

Shema!



Charles Krauthammer, May 18, 2007:

"There has hardly been a Middle East peace plan in the past 40 years -- including the current Saudi version -- that does not demand a return to the status quo of June 4, 1967. Why is that date so sacred? Because it was the day before the outbreak of the Six-Day War in which Israel scored one of the most stunning victories of the 20th century. The Arabs have spent four decades trying to undo its consequences.
In fact, the real anniversary should be now, three weeks earlier. On May 16, 1967, Egyptian President Gamal Nasser ordered the evacuation from the Sinai Peninsula of the U.N. buffer force that had kept Israel and Egypt at peace for 10 years. The United Nations complied, at which point Nasser imposed a naval blockade of Israel's only outlet to the south, the port of Eilat -- an open act of war. 
How Egypt came to this reckless provocation is a complicated tale (chronicled in Michael Oren's magisterial "Six Days of War") of aggressive intent compounded with miscommunication and, most fatefully, disinformation. The Soviet Union had reported urgently and falsely to its Middle East clients, Syria and Egypt, that Israel was massing troops on the Syrian border for an attack. Israel desperately tried to disprove this charge by three times inviting the Soviet ambassador in Israel to visit the front. He refused. The Soviet warnings led to a cascade of intra-Arab maneuvers that in turn led Nasser, the champion of pan-Arabism, to mortally confront Israel with a remilitarized Sinai and a southern blockade.
Why is this still important? Because that three-week period between May 16 and June 5 helps explain Israel's 40-year reluctance to give up the fruits of that war -- the Sinai Peninsula, the Golan Heights, the West Bank and Gaza -- in return for paper guarantees of peace. Israel had similar guarantees from the 1956 Suez war, after which it evacuated the Sinai in return for that U.N. buffer force and for assurances from the Western powers of free passage through the Straits of Tiran.
All this disappeared with a wave of Nasser's hand. During those three interminable weeks, President Lyndon Johnson did try to rustle up an armada of countries to run the blockade and open Israel's south. The effort failed dismally.
It is hard to exaggerate what it was like for Israel in those three weeks. Egypt, already in an alliance with Syria, formed an emergency military pact with Jordan. Iraq, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, Libya and Morocco began sending forces to join the coming fight. With troops and armor massing on Israel's every frontier, jubilant broadcasts in every Arab capital hailed the imminent final war for the extermination of Israel. "We shall destroy Israel and its inhabitants," declared PLO head Ahmed Shuqayri, "and as for the survivors -- if there are any -- the boats are ready to deport them."
For Israel, the waiting was excruciating and debilitating. Israel's citizen army had to be mobilized. As its soldiers waited on the various fronts for the world to rescue the nation from its peril, Israeli society ground to a halt and its economy began bleeding to death. Army Chief of Staff Yitzhak Rabin, later to be hailed as a war hero and even later as a martyred man of peace, had a nervous breakdown. He was incapacitated to the point of incoherence by the unbearable tension of waiting with the life of his country in the balance, knowing that waiting too long would allow the armies of 100 million Arabs to strike first his country of 3 million.
We know the rest of the story. Rabin did recover in time to lead Israel to victory. But we forget how perilous was Israel's condition. The victory hinged on a successful attack on Egypt's air force on the morning of June 5. It was a gamble of astonishing proportions. Israel sent the bulk of its 200-plane air force on the mission, fully exposed to antiaircraft fire and missiles. Had they been detected and the force destroyed, the number of planes remaining behind to defend the Israeli homeland -- its cities and civilians -- from the Arab air forces' combined 900 planes was . . . 12.
We also forget that Israel's occupation of the West Bank was entirely unsought. Israel begged King Hussein of Jordan to stay out of the conflict. Engaged in fierce combat with a numerically superior Egypt, Israel had no desire to open a new front just yards from Jewish Jerusalem and just miles from Tel Aviv. But Nasser personally told Hussein that Egypt had destroyed Israel's air force and airfields and that total victory was at hand. Hussein could not resist the temptation to join the fight. He joined. He lost.
The world will soon be awash with 40th-anniversary retrospectives of the war -- and exegeses on the peace of the ages that awaits if Israel would only to return to lines of June 4, 1967. But Israelis are cautious. They remember the terror of that June 4 and of that unbearable May when, with Israel in possession of no occupied territories whatsoever, the entire Arab world was furiously preparing Israel's imminent extinction.

And the world did nothing."

But He did.

The iconic Rubinger photo of the three paratroopers at the recaptured Western Wall in June 1967
(Courtesy Rubinger/Knesset Collection)


"To many, the 50th anniversary of Israel’s victory in the Six Day War — in which Israel captured the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Golan Heights and the Sinai Peninsula –is a bittersweet one. It represents half a century since the Old City and other historic Jewish sites returned to Jewish hands, but also half a century of Israeli military rule over the Palestinians.
Asked about the dual nature of the jubilee, the men appear to be as divided as Israeli society.
“There is something to be said for that [calling the image the start of the tragedy of the state of Israel] Yifat said. “I don’t believe that we should be ruling over another nation.”
“How can you say that as an Israeli who fought for something after 2,000 years of longing?” Karasenti shot back. “We returned the heart of the Jewish people to this land.”
Retorted Yifat: “What am I supposed to tell my grandchildren? That there will be war every year?”
Despite their political differences, the three men, now in their 70s, say they have remained close friends over the years.
As Karasenti, Oshri, and Yifat approached the wall to take a picture this week, a passerby stopped the three to thank them.
“All of the people that are here right now are only here because of you,” this man said. “It’s you, and all of the other soldiers who fought then. This is all thanks to your courage and your faith. So again, thank you so much.”"

 Haim Oshri, Dr. Itzik Yifat and Zion Karasenti stand in front of the Western Wall in April 2017, 50 years after
the three former paratroopers were resonantly photographed at the holy site by David Rubinger
immediately after its capture in the Six Day War.


"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom."
--2 Corinthians 3:17

"I will insist that the Hebrews have done more to civilize men than any other nation. If I were an atheist, and believed in blind eternal fate, I should still believe that fate had ordained the Jews to be the most essential instrument for civilizing the nations. If I were an atheist of the other sect, who believe, or pretend to believe that all is ordered by chance, I should believe that chance had ordered the Jews to preserve and propagate to all mankind the doctrine of a supreme, intelligent, wise, almighty sovereign of the universe, which I believe to be the great essential principle of all morality, and consequently of all civilization."--Pres. John Adams, in a letter to F. A. Vanderkemp (16 February 1809), as quoted in The Roots of American Order (1974) by Russell Kirk.



















Psalm 97:9-11 English Standard Version (ESV)

For you, O Lord, are most high over all the earth;
    you are exalted far above all gods.

10 O you who love the Lord, hate evil!
    He preserves the lives of his saints;
    he delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
11 Light is sown[a] for the righteous,
    and joy for the upright in heart.




Sunday, October 28, 2018

Taller Ants?

(from the Archives)

"...Tolerance is not a Christian virtue. Charity, justice, mercy, prudence, honesty -- these are Christian virtues. And obviously, in a diverse community, tolerance is an important working principle. But it's never an end itself. In fact, tolerating grave evil within a society is itself a form of serious evil. Likewise, democratic pluralism does not mean that Catholics should be quiet in public about serious moral issues because of some misguided sense of good manners. A healthy democracy requires vigorous moral debate to survive. Real pluralism demands that people of strong beliefs will advance their convictions in the public square -- peacefully, legally and respectfully, but energetically and without embarrassment. Anything less is bad citizenship and a form of theft from the public conversation."
--Archbishop Chaput

Via Kathy Shaidle

The Intolerable Acts-UPDATE:

"Extremism in the pursuit of Trump is no vice."--Tucker Carlson

"The Democratic Party and the millions it represents having refused to accept 2016’s results; having used their positions of power in government and society to prevent the winners from exercising the powers earned by election; declaring in vehement words and violent deeds the illegitimacy, morbidity, even criminality, of persons and ideas contrary to themselves; bet that this “resistance” would so energize their constituencies, and so depress their opponents’, that subsequent elections would prove 2016 to have been an anomaly and further confirm their primacy in America. The 2018 Congressional elections are that strategy’s first major test."--Angelo Codevilla


Ed Driscoll: "Thus, at the beginning of November 1963 a framework has been established that the far right is the threat to American democracy, "and that they've moved from heated rhetoric to violent act," Piereson says.
"So when the news spreads that Kennedy has been killed, the immediate response is that it must be a right winger who's done it," Piereson notes. And while the Birch-era right definitely had severe issues, JFK's assassin on November 22, 1963 had, of course, a polar opposite ideology. "When the word is now spread that Oswald has been captured, and that he has a communist past, and they start running film of him demonstrating for Castro in the previous summer, there is a tremendous disorientation at this.
Disorientation Occurs
The shock that Kennedy was in reality a victim of the Cold War simply did not compute on a national level. This was in stark contrast to the narrative that framed the death of Abraham Lincoln a century prior. "When Booth shot Lincoln, everybody knew that Booth was a southern partisan, and they could easily understand why he wanted to kill Lincoln," Piereson says. "Northerners blamed the south for this, and you assimilate it into the moral framework of the Civil War."
In contrast, "Liberals had great difficulty assimilating this idea that a communist would kill Kennedy. It made sense to them that an anti-civil rights person might do it, or an anti-communist might do it, but not a communist." … 
"In 1963, you have a fairly conservative country, culturally," Piereson notes. "You have a communist assassinate the president, a popular president. In 1968, the country has kind of gone off the rails, especially liberal-left culture as you find in the universities, and places like that. The students are taking drugs, and they're demonstrating, and they're rioting against the war in Vietnam. 
"Their hero is Castro, and people like Ho Chi Minh and Mao Tse Tung," Pierson says, noting the surfeit of Castro and Ché-style army fatigues being worn on campuses. "So how do you get, really, from this place in 1963, where Kennedy is shot by a communist, to '68 where communists like Castro are heroes to the left?"
Piereson believes this could have only happened due to the cultural disorientation caused by the airbrushing of Kennedy's assassination and the attempt to "view it as a civil rights event, instead of a Cold War event."
... the overheated language of the modern left, such as Al Gore's attempt to demonize his critics as "Digital Brownshirts" begins to grow out of this mid-1960s period. "Just as the Birch Society had accused Eisenhower of being a communist," Piereson says, "by the late sixties, the liberals and leftists were accusing everyone else with being Nazis and fascists. That, and anti-Americanism. These now became features of the left."
The psychological discord in the wake of JFK's assassination also destroyed the line that had previously separated New Deal-style liberals with the more extreme hard left. "The anti-Americanism and the conspiracy theorizing and the rough political language characterized by the left now enters into liberalism," Piereson says. "These movements now meld from the sixties on. Now, it wasn't just the Kennedy assassination; obviously, the war in Vietnam was a factor, too. But the Kennedy assassination's in there-a significant event which breaks down the wall between the far left and the liberals. And this is one of the things that now leads, as I say, to the collapse of liberalism, to the kind of thing that we have now." …
"Oswald turned out to be one of the most consequential assassins in history," Piereson says. "He's a communist who shoots the president of the United States. You would think that there would be a reaction against communism. But there is no reaction against communism in the United States after Kennedy's killed. In fact, communism is the vogue," particularly on college campuses. "Kennedy's death sparks a kind of anti-Americanism, and creates among the youth a vogue for the left which was completely unpredictable."

"When the dud-bombs started showing up this week, President Trump unequivocally condemned the act and called for unity against all political violence. It was the right thing to do and he did it without any qualifications. Democrats rejected the sentiment, choosing to try to score political points ahead of the midterms. The media rejected it too, blaming the President for the actions of a madman. It was the exact opposite of everything these very same people did last year when a liberal activist tried to murder as many Republicans as he could on a baseball field in Virginia. Nancy Pelosi bristled at the suggestion of Democrats saying the GOP health care proposal would kill tens of thousands of people every year might lead someone to think they had a moral obligation to act to prevent it. “How dare they?” she squawked at the suggestion. But Republicans didn’t dare, for the most part. They quickly moved on, though not as fast as the media did, which forgot the story after three days – before Congressman Steve Scalise was off life support. Now it’s like it never happened. How do you unite with people like that? ...Democrats aren’t going to change unless voters reject them again, and then only maybe. Just last week, Hillary Clinton said Democrats don’t need to engage in civility unless they regain power. Maybe the time has come to stop trying to get along and just focus on making sure they never do."--Derek Hunter