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May 12, 2004



For some strange reason, the embarrassment I felt over this issue seemed to have left me after yesterdays al qaeda video. We need better intelligence, afterall. Call if apples and oranges. That's how I feel.


Quite frankly I tend to agree with Jim as well
as Senator Inofe.

Sad to say I'm not at all surprised that there
isn't any apparent outrage nor statement of like
from you nor other's with regards to yesterday's obscene and barbaric act that those "knuckle dragging animals" did.

No doubt it will be the usual rationalizations, excuses, justifications, and God awful SILENCE
that emanates from the "We Must UnderStand Their Anger" crowd. Oh wait, now it's they're "morally
justified" because some Iraqi's were humiliated
and treated badly therefore there is a moral parallel here.

I still believe that what was done by those guards was cruel, vicious, unjustified, and
immoral and they will be punished for their

But to watch or listen to another man screaming
in agony as his friggin head is cut off is unjustifiable...

For you, Luke, to offer no sense of outrage, horror, not even a word I find equally offensive.
The act of those sub-human animals goes beyond the boundaries of Democratic, Republican,
Christian, Jews, Muslim's, Buddist, Hindu, or
any other faith.

Anybody, and I mean anybody of good conscience should be outraged, angered, horrorified, and disgusted with that act, those who committed that
act, and those who encouraged them to do it.
To have the bloody courage to come out say so and cease hiding behind these now empty and meaningless arguements about what the Red Cross
said and what the Senator said in the light of
yesterday's display......

Sadly, that probably won't happen. It will be pushed under the covers, hidden away, "we mustn't look at that", "just ignore it and it will go away", "just bury our heads in the sand and it will be all better.".

Sad, very sad....

or other meaningless empt

Perhaps some of you would agree with some of
the comments supporting the beheading of Berg yesterday or agree that it was justified or
a "moral equivalent" of those in the Arab world?


At least there are some in the Arab world who are angered and outraged over this act but some, who are also angered, only so far as it lowers their position...
as it


Chrish, I'm not going to explain all over again why I don't rant my emotions on this site about acts of terrorism. Interesting you should mention "silence" though, as I can certainly explain mine. After the beheading video came out, I was so depressed and disgusted and, frankly, frightened about the level of depravity the situation was sinking into that I felt too overwhelmed to "process" it (as we say in America) and certainly didn't feel this was the place to air any of that.

So keep your crass accusations about how I feel to yourself. It's inappropriate to imply I, or anybody on here, feels nothing becuase we don't use this site as a place to post emotional responses to OBVIOUSLY HORRIBLE things. This has been explained to you repeatedly, and you still want to try to turn people into monsters if they don't provide you some kind of patent "outrage" (which is then measured and judged by you for its merit).

Maybe I'm overreacting but I think you owe an apology to those of us you so cavalierly accuse as not "having courage" because we don't display your demands for outrage on a site where it's not appropriate. How dare you tell me what I feel about watching somebody have their head sawed off in cold blood, and how I would post my disgust if I "had any courage".


well, the good Senator has done himself and his country a great service with his comments. He just confirmed the stereotype that so many people have of us Americans - we only care about human rights and dignity when it comes to Americans. Everyone else is second class, or somehow inferior. I can't say for sure, but I imagine that the good Senator backed our invasion in hopes of liberating the poor, abused Iraqis from the death and torture of the Republican Guard. I am starting to wonder if some of these people really care so much about the poor common Iraqi as they claim to.

Good senator Inhofe has swallowed so much propaganda and patriotism that he forgot to open his eyes to some stark realities and think a bit. Were they really murderers or, as IRC says, were 70-90% innocent people falsely accused. And if they did fight against us, did we not sign the Geneva Conventions? Do we not expect dignity for captured American soldiers?

As for outrage on the other side, this reminds me of the rant that the good Senator Lieberman went on a few days ago. You know, where is the apology from al Qaida, etc, etc. How on earth could he put americans and al qaida in the same sentence? I can't even imagine what he was thinking. Lucky he wasn't standing next to me, I would like to have beaten him over the head with a roll of french bread.

All I can say to good Senators Lieberman and Inhofe is, get off your high horses. I think it goes without saying that the beheading photos disgusted all of us, just as the prisoner abuse has done. Having said all that, get real about Iraq. If you want to put blame on anyone, put it on two groups: those in the administration and Congress who tirelessly advocated a pointless war and those in Congress who were too spineless to say no to it. The fault lies with 3/4 of our politicians - just as in Vietnam they failed to think about the Gulf of Tonkin affair, they failed to think about WMDs and liberation.

opinion paper I stumbled upon in Lebanese paper:


9/11, WMD, Regime Change, Liberation

....it's the oil, stupid.



thanks for the monbiot article, though I wish he would have spent as much time listing possible alternatives as he did listing problems.

on another note, the Angolan president is currently meeting with Bush to discuss freedom and, oh boy, oil reserves in his country.


Ditto everything Maryann & JJ said.

I feel no need whatsoever to post on this site to reassure anyone how shocked and revolted I am about Nick Berg's death. Some things are beyond words. We all have to deal with our own imaginations and emotions. Nick Berg's family deserve sympathy and respect, not to have their tragedy used to make a point on a weblog. Outrage is easy and has nothing to do with "courage". Taking responsiblity for ourselves and working out how we can prevent the situation from getting worse, without being blinded by anger and fear, is what really takes guts.

It makes no sense for this atrocity and other acts of terrorism to cause anyone to disregard the the fact that our troops were abusing innocent people at Abu Ghraib. We've sunk pretty low to have to compare ourselves to terrorists to say, "Look, we're not as bad as them, so lay off" or "They still haven't apologized, so why should we?" What is this, kindergarten?


Amazing. Truly amazing. I hear you Chrish. I must be living on a different planet than most of you. America takes pictures of naked prisoners and the world goes crazy ( and somewhat justifiably so ). Al Qaeda mutilates a living human being, whose only crime was that he was an American trying to help and we see no outrage.

sidenote: Three cheers for the Iraqi soccer (football) team who just qualified for the Olympics. I'm sure they would rather have Uday back, beating, stabbing and drowning them when they allowed a goal, though.


This is relativism run amok. Chrish, you and Jim keep making the same damn argument.

The trick is, see, we're the GOOD GUYS. That means we have standards and a moral code, and what we're fighting for (ostensibly) is to provide the conditions to the Iraqis under which they can enjoy the privileges of these same standards and the same moral code. When we discard all of that using the argument that the bad guys have taken the gloves off, so we should too, well, it doesn't take much imagination to turn it around and put us in the BAD GUYS category too. Especially when dim-bulb Senators come out and say they don't mind giving someone a kicking, as long as they're in jail they MUST deserve a kicking, right? Right?

Be as offended as you like, Crish. You haven't got a leg to stand on and you know it.


But we're not the good guys, Luke. Isn't that what you have been saying all along? You sound like the parent who does nothing to their one child who goes up and down the streen breaking the neighbors windows. Can't punish him because he's just always been bad. But you ground and spank your good child who sits down to dinner two minutes late. Where's the consistency?


You want to talk analogies, Jim? As you keep bringing us down to kindergarten level...

Let's say you find out from the teachers at your kid's school that Junior's been bullying other kids for their lunch money, using verbal abuse and threats.

Your kid then says, "Hey, Dad, why pick on me? All the other bullies use their fists and kick their victims to the ground for no good reason at all. They're the evil bullies. I'm not."

According to Jim and Chrish's logic, they've have to say, "Yes, Junior, you will be punished. But you are so right to call my attention to all these evil bullies who are punching and kicking other kids. My responsibility is to condemn all evil bullies, and not to focus on your behavior. Now that you've reminded me how much worse these evil bullies are, I feel no shame at all at your actions, which cause no real damage and after all, you're a good kid most of the time. You have no need to apologize to your victims or to return their lunch money, until those evil violent bullies do the same. See, I have no double standards and don't expect any better from you than I do from the bad kids at school. How dare those teachers bring your misdeeds to my attention when there are evil bullies at the school doing far worse? Rather than take this school-wide problem of bullying to the PTA and sort it out together, I will continue to denounce those evil bullies and their irresponsible scumbag parents. The parents of your victims have a hell of a nerve complaining about your bullying when there's all these evil violent bulllies about."
And so on. Great parenting.


What the heck was that? ...Kindergarten eh? Got it. Thanks for twisting everything I have said, Miriamg. Now just calm down.
And thanks for once again providing justification for Al Qaeda.


Close, Jim, but not quite. I think our position is more like parents of a good, talented kid with a lot of promise who live next door to a lousy kid who is out of control.

Of course we'll be upset when the rotten neighbor kid breaks windows, but we are limited in our control over his behavior. Maybe we get other parents in the neighborhood and try to work together to deal with the bad kid and the situation in his home that leads to his behavior. If that doesn't work, we put pressure on the parents and, as a last resort, bring in the authorities.

Our own kid, however, is our responsibility. And because we are proud of our smart, groovy kid, we are very concerned when he goes off course. It is also our duty to discipline him. We don't just let him off the hook because the neighbor's kid is worse.

Sure we think the neighbor's kid is a nightmare, but we are equally concerned with our own family and the kid that is under our jurisdiction.


To be perfectly honest I'm not at all surprised
at any of your responses. Actually, it is exactly what I expected to be reading. I did have
some hope that some of you, given your outrage over the prison scandal, would have, at the very least, said something in the way of offense at
that barbaric act. Even some on the Muslim side
including those in Iraq are outraged by the beheading of Nick Berg but, you people? NOTHING,
Empty and Silent...

I really find it interesting that you will make
your statements, your outrage, your anger over
the abuses those prisoner's suffered and rightly so. But, when an innocent civilian is brutally murdered as Nick Berg was, as the News Journalist
was, and countless other's are you sit on your hands and are silent. And when called to task on that you express outrage that anybody would have the temerity to reproach you for your silence.
Instead, coming up with the most ridiculous excuses, justifications, and rationlizations as to
why you are incapable of expressing something, anthing.

Yes Luke, Jim and I do continue to make the same
"damn" arguments and you and other's continue to make the same "damn" excuses.

You will, as so many other Democrat's, will go to great length's to express outrage over something like this prison scandal, and which I agree with
you, but when other's do something just as, if not more, outrageous, or disgusting, or barbaric you are all typically SILENT.

While those make their excuses of "I was just following orders" you present such empty statments
as "on a site where it's not appropriate." Not appropriate? Would that be because you are so
obssessed with Bush, so lacking in Vision that anything outside of that is non-existant, not worthy of comment or "I was also disgusted but, chose not to comment here as this is not the place." line of excuses?

If anybody does not have a leg to stand on it is you. You look at one side and refuse to see anything else...

Apologize? Apologize for what? For being offended, outraged, and angered at the barbarism of those animals who cut the head off of another
human being in retaliation for prison abuses by
equally barbaric animals? For expressing
an equal amount of offense against people who are
also angered and outraged over the prison abuses
while completely ignoring that barbaric act, who remain silent while giving empty excuses for their silence. Those are the same kind of excuses
that German citizens living around the death camps of Hitler's Germany gave...

Excuse me, but this time no apology will be given.
You cannot ignore one act of barbarism while protesting another act of barbarism...


Well Maryann although we almost always disagree I give you credit for at least making a sensible, rational analogy. However, as far as this overall subject (treatment of prisoners and outrage) goes, I am with Chrish all the way.
And for the record prior to broadcast of a beheading of an innocent civilian, I did express my outrage over what our guards had done.

fyi on Nick Berg. Yes, Nick Berg was making money, but as an Ivy League graduate he certainly could have stayed in the States to find work. He believed in the mission and the goals of the President. His father didn't (doesn't). They respectfully disagreed with each other.

Now my form of outrage isn't good enough for you? Talking to my husband, family and friends isn't enough--if I don't rant on this particular web site than I am morally reprehensible and empty, and compared to the SS?

Any other sites part of your crucial list of must-posts Chrish? How about Playboy.com or Mtv.com? Sure it's not relevant to them, but apparently that's not a good enough reason not to declare my outrage. Anything less means I am a failure in your eyes, and no amount of private grief is good enough.

I give up. Over to you guys....good luck....


(by the way, cheers Jim! I thought that was a pretty good one myself...)



"Of course we'll be upset when the rotten neighbor kid breaks windows, but we are limited in our control over his behavior. Maybe we get other parents in the neighborhood and try to work together to deal with the bad kid and the situation in his home that leads to his behavior. If that doesn't work, we put pressure on the parents and, as a last resort, bring in the authorities." I agree with Jim, excellent analogy.

"Maybe we get other parents in the neighborhood and try to work together to deal with the bad kid"? Doesn't that equate to openly expressing outrage over barbaric acts both sides are engaging in not just one side? Doesn't that also equate to getting other countries, other people, other people of faith, other people of good conscience to also "openly" express outrage?

I have openly expressed my outrage, anger, and disgust with the conduct of those guards, their commanding officers as well as expecting them to be brought up on charges, tried, and put in prison. I have also openly expressed my outrage, anger, and disgust with the beheading of an innocent civilian. I have not just sat in my room and spoken to my wife about that disgusting act but have also openly expressed it on this site, on Aljazeera's, on AlArabiya's site, and
to my representative's in Congress about the conduct of those guards and about the beheading
of Nick Berg.

I said nothing about the SS Maryann, my statement
referenced the "civilians" living around the death camps who said nothing about what was going on those camps. Their excuse? "We didn't know what was going on.", "We spoke about it amongst ourselves", "We daren't say anything out of fear".

To put it in the latest terms coined by Democrats in my party "a moral equivalence".

You cannot complain or express outrage over this act of barbarism while ignoring another act of barbarism. Both acts must openly be protested,
and statments made, again, openly. Otherwise
you have no crediblity...


hang on a minute, Crish. I expressed my contempt for what they did to Nick - not going to acknowledge that? Not that it makes a difference in helping Nick in any way.

But, Crish, if you wonder why people laugh when americans speak of moral authority, then just look at the contempt we exhibit for the very people we pretend to be liberating. Inhofe is just the latest embodyment of that attitude we have for everyone else. I watched a CBS show where a US military police woman snuck a camera into prison and gave a running commentary, even though it was against prison rules. Mostly she was belittling Iraqis. She spoke of 2 prisoners dying, and capped it off with "No big deal. That´s two less for me to worry about." Boy, with liberators like that, who needs enemies?


by the way, speaking of credibility. What of the credibility of the man who told us that we had to invade Iraq or "face grave dangers"?
You seem to give him a lot of leeway. Hypocritical?


My God, even those within another terrorist group, who also have committed acts of terrorism, are anti-American, and who are also busy with their activities are capable of making an Open statement against the barbaric act committed against an innocent civilian!

"has done very great harm to Islam and Muslims by this group that claims affiliation to the religion of mercy, compassion and humane principles".


Mercy, Compassion, and Human Principles they said.
This statement made even in the light of the abuses in Abu Ghirab prison.

Even they have the moral high ground over you and
other's within the Democratic Party and the News Media. Even they can see the extreme barbarism of that act AND have the "Courage" to come out and make a statement against it.


Moral Authority? Is that something that the "left" tries to claim that the Republicans claim we have? I don't hear people actually using that term so much as I hear others accusing us of using it.
That being said, I would have to say our country does seem to come in at a little higher level than Hitler, Stalin, Hussein, when it comes to morals.
Let's see, Saddam killed 400,000 of his own people, we humiliated some probably not nice people and took pictures of it. Al Qaeda cuts off the head of a living human being, we admit we've got some idiots who screwed up and put ourselves on trial. Ya, it's the same.


It is not just one terrorist group who has come
out and openly condemned the beheading of Nick Berg, another one has come out as well as many
other Arab countries and condemned that act.


Where's the "moral equivalence" being spit out
by members of the Democratic Party and the News Media?

At least those who have committed acts of terrorism and have an anti-American complaint
can see the extreme barbarism of that act, take
the time out, and stand up with the rest of us, who have condemned both the prison abuses and that scandalous act, and made our voices one.

No statement made on the main page here however.
Just more of the same statements on that page.

Yes J.J., I am aware of what that "lady" said.
BTW, she is the same girl who was holding the leash attached to that poor prisoner. She has
become the poster child of that whole digusting
thing. She's also, apparently, pregnant from the
Sargeant who was in charge of her. Another
whopping example for the struggles of
women throughout the world?

She and all those like her, both man and woman,
the guards, her commanding officer's should
be tried and put in prison. I would even go so far as to say they should consider handing them over to an Iraqi court and be tried based upon their laws since their crimes were committed against Iraqi's.

I would also say that those who committed that
barbaric act should also be handed over, tried,
and punished for their crimes.

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