Taliban #2 in custody


Taliban’s 2nd-in-command nabbed in Pakistan


Bin Laden associate is most senior Afghan Taliban leader caught since ’01

NBC, msnbc.com and news services
updated 1 hour, 33 minutes ago

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – The Taliban’s top military commander has been arrested in a joint CIA-Pakistani operation in Pakistan, officials said Tuesday.

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the No. 2 behind Afghan Taliban founder Mullah Mohammad Omar and a close associate of Osama bin Laden, was captured in the southern Pakistani port city of Karachi, two Pakistani intelligence officers and a senior U.S. official said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release such sensitive information.

One Pakistani officer said Baradar was arrested 10 days ago with the assistance of the United States and “was talking” to his interrogators.

Commentary when I get unbusy at work.

85 Comments

  1. JohnC, it was a joint effort. The CIA on the ground would’ve been wise to turn him over to the Pakistanis immediately after capture. Who knows, maybe someone actually, you know, punched him in the face to capture him alive. I’m actually hoping he’s in Pakistani custody and not American custody, what with the foolishness afoot here.

  2. Awesome news! Obama sure is tough on terror!

    I bet it just makes America’s enemies grind their teeth that Obama is this good. I’ll bet they just try to downplay this victory. Well, screw them!

  3. Nangleator wrote:

    Awesome news! Obama sure is tough on terror!

    I bet it just makes America’s enemies grind their teeth that Obama is this good. I’ll bet they just try to downplay this victory. Well, screw them!

    Nang, I know that you didn’t miss this thread, or this one either, because you commented on both of them. You’ll note that, in both, I wrote that President Obama is maturing into his job, at least as far as the war against the Islamists is concerned.

    Of course, President Obama didn’t capture Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar himself, just like President Bush didn’t capture or kill a single terrorist himself; the work was done by the professionals. But President Obama didn’t get in their way, didn’t set up rules of engagement that prevented the professionals from doing what they are supposed to do.

  4. Dana, my comment was meant partly to snark on the same level of the previous comments, but also real cheer leading. The blame for attacks will certainly be laid at his feet, even those that fail completely, so I’ll give him the credit for victories with just as much seriousness.

    I’m quite happy that you recognize positive things, when and as you see them. It’s what keeps me coming back to this page.

    I’ve got my fingers crossed that the interrogation goes well, and in such a way that our prisoner will be shocked enough to look at the conflict in another way. This victory could be an unexpected boon, like Remagen in WWII, because this war won’t end with a bullet, but with a conversation.

  5. maturing into his job. I regular David Brooks-Will you are. How nice you are to give your seal of approval with a clenched jaw. You have more to be happy about when it comes to Obama that Progressives do. What saddens me most is that your partisan lense can’t see how much more effective Obama has become by using the same tactics Bush used. Even without the waterboarding.

    Face O is a War president and a damned effective one.

  6. Donviti wrote:

    Face (it), O is a War president and a damned effective one.

    I think that remains to be seen, but it is always possible.

    Yet, that statement puts you in rather a quandary: from reading your wonderful site, it seems that you rather disapprove of fighting the wars, period, yet you’re telling us that the man for whom you voted is an effective war president.

  7. Our President is making no one completely happy.

    I think Lincoln warned about that sort of thing.

  8. Stolen Borrowed from Patterico’s Pontifications:

    Torture and Mullah Barador

    Filed under: Obama, Terrorism — DRJ @ 5:23 pm

    So, Mullah Barador is being tortured now?

    It’s okay. President Obama’s ban on torture doesn’t apply to rendition programs or to CIA detention “facilities used only to hold people on a short-term, transitory basis.”

    Glenn Greenwald and Andrew Sullivan wonder what will stop future Presidents from re-authorizing waterboarding and similar Bush-era interrogation techniques. The answer, of course, is that effectively Obama already has.

    In other words, it seems that Senator Obama’s condemnations of President Bush and his conduct of the war against the Islamists was just politics. Now that he’s President, and has the actual responsibility for conducting the war and keeping us safe, why yet another of President Bush’s methods has now become acceptable.

  9. That would be an example of him making me not happy.

    It might be fun to see the reaction of his rabid enemies to the news that Obama is ordering/condoning torture. Will they suddenly flip-flop and support the rule of law, and demand that Bush and Cheney be prosecuted? Simply to be on the opposite side than Obama? Or will the criticisms be more akin to “What a wimp! He’s only torturing as much as Bush did? Why does he hate America so much?”

    It would be worth it, except for the millions of new terrorist recruits it would spawn.

  10. It might be fun to see the reaction of his rabid enemies to the news that Obama is ordering/condoning torture. Will they suddenly flip-flop and support the rule of law, and demand that Bush and Cheney be prosecuted?

    If Obama does something right, we’ll credit him for it.

    It would be worth it, except for the millions of new terrorist recruits it would spawn.

    And if you believe this bullshit, you’ll believe anything. The terrorists don’t need us to do anything to recruit, they just need to hate America. Your argument is as silly as saying we shouldn’t have fought the Nazis since that would just make them mad at us.

  11. Dana quotes: “So, Mullah Barador is being tortured now?”

    Dana, your link has no evidence for this rhetorical question.

    I am sorry to say that Obama has continued the Bush rendition program.

    JohnC: “They best Mirandize him quickly lest we learn something.”

    This we don’t know either; however, it is the right thing to do, as Bush did as well for every single detainee brought to justice, with a 100% conviction rate in civilian court. That is our judicial system being utilized properly. Have faith in it!

  12. Nangleator wrote:

    It might be fun to see the reaction of his rabid enemies to the news that Obama is ordering/condoning torture. Will they suddenly flip-flop and support the rule of law, and demand that Bush and Cheney be prosecuted?

    To which Eric responded:

    If Obama does something right, we’ll credit him for it.

    Which we just did here.

  13. Perry wrote:

    JohnC: “They best Mirandize him quickly lest we learn something.”

    This we don’t know either; however, it is the right thing to do, as Bush did as well for every single detainee brought to justice, with a 100% conviction rate in civilian court. That is our judicial system being utilized properly. Have faith in it!

    What crime has Abdul Ghani Baradar committed? He has waged war against us, certainly enough, and for that reason should be treated as an non-uniformed prisoner of war, but as far as a crime, under federal statutes and under American jurisdiction, under which statutes could he be convicted?

    Has he ever set foot on American territory? If not, what jurisdiction would exist for us to try him in federal court?

    This is the difference between crime and war; you really need to understand it!

  14. Dana: “To which Eric responded:

    If Obama does something right, we’ll credit him for it.”

    Woe be it if we have to depend on the likes of Eric and the rest of you absolutists on here to tell us what is right and what is not right, as you admit yourselves that you wish to continue American imperialist practices, cloaked in the garb of a do-gooder for human rights.

    I am all for the human rights emphasis, but I am totally opposed to our imposing our values at the tip of a gun, which is exactly what we have done repeatedly since the end of WWII. Somehow we are hung up on this concept of ‘exceptionalism’, which is actually exceptionalism cloaked in the garb of imperialism, as I have recently come to realize.

    We are our own worst enemies! And you right wingers on here are stooges of the corporatists, acting against your own well-being, in my view. This is incredible!

    We need to finally consider the idea of being pacifists, keeping war as a last resort instead of a first resort, as in Jesus’ philosophy.

    Please, name for me one other nation on this earth that currently has this kind of an imperialist world view.

  15. Dana: “This is the difference between crime and war; you really need to understand it!”

    Oh I understand it very well, Dana. I understand that this idea is an enabler permitting us to sweep up any individuals world-wide and detain them indefinitely without charges. And you support that?

    Even Bush himself was further along in understanding American jurisprudence principles than you absolutists. This is truly amazing. You people are diving into the deep end of this moral/judicial morass.

    From where are you getting these retrograde ideas about justice?

  16. Perry: “We need to finally consider the idea of being pacifists, keeping war as a last resort instead of a first resort, as in Jesus’ philosophy.”

    Jesus’ philosophy has no place in a country “founded on Christian morals.”

    Eric, Dana: “If Obama does something right, we’ll credit him for it.”

    While I recognize that admirable trait in some people here, I know that elsewhere the motivation is purely anti-Obama, in every way. Hell, there are senators and congressmen that will vote against their own bills when Obama tries to back them. It’s like they’re saying, “Don’t listen to me! My ideas are terrible!” to their constituents.

  17. “Nangleator”“Eric, Dana: “If Obama does something right, we’ll credit him for it.”

    Exactly, Nangleator! These so-called fundamentalists cherry pick what they like when they like it, so they are not really absolutists, they are relativists. However, they think they are absolutists, because they think they know what is right for the rest of us. Their definition of liberty is that they deem themselves free to require the rest of us to believe what they believe, else we be condemned and defeated.

    While I recognize that admirable trait in some people here, I know that elsewhere the motivation is purely anti-Obama, in every way. Hell, there are senators and congressmen that will vote against their own bills when Obama tries to back them.”

    Exactly! Seven Repubs cosponsored the Finance Commission Bill, but voted it down when it came up for a vote. Four Repubs cosponsored the Pay-Go Bill, but voted it down when it came up for a vote. Not one Republican voted for the Stimulus Bill, but when the stimulus money gets to their states or districts, they stand up and take credit for it. There is only one word to describe this duplicitous behavior of the Republicans and their party: HYPOCRISY

    What a bunch of a**holes!

  18. Please, name for me one other nation on this earth that currently has this kind of an imperialist world view.

    I think you have a mistaken notion of the term “Imperialist”. Rome had an empire, Britain had an empire, America does not. And we don’t want one, either. When we conquer countries, whether Germany, japan, or Iraq, we help them set up a democratic government so that they can live a civilized existence. We don’t simply take them over and run them for our own benefit, which us the usual definition of an empire.

  19. Perry: “We need to finally consider the idea of being pacifists, keeping war as a last resort instead of a first resort, as in Jesus’ philosophy.”
    Jesus’ philosophy has no place in a country “founded on Christian morals.”

    Actually, I don’t recall Jesus saying a word about matters of state. His mission was the salvation of individual souls, not telling the government which policies to adopt. In his”Render unto Caesar” comment, he seemed to implicitly accept the legitimacy of Roman rule, and as we all know, they weren’t exactly pacifists.

  20. Good rebuke, Eric, but in Jesus’ time, Caesars weren’t Jewish, and certainly not Christian. Now, we’ve got a situation where the decision-makers in government can’t even get into positions of power without being Christian. So, are their choices regarding international politics separate from their personal, Christian decisions?

    What would Jesus have had Caesar do?

  21. Perry, I resent being called a ” so-called fundamentalist”. I am a Christian and am not a so-called anything. If you don’t like Christians that’s okay with me but you need not slander or belittle my beliefs while doing so.

    Awhile back Pho went after Dana Pico’s daughters and slandered them. Now you seem to have license to go after my faith to make a political point. Frankly, I don’t appreciate either attack.

    You seem to have a very bad opinion of people of the Christian faith. I do not know why that is unless you see that we don’t always live up to our own expectations. Unfortunately, we don’t. But that doesn’t mean we don’t try. I would like to point out that we are the first to admit that. As Christians we have urealistically high expectaions of ourselves, unreachable you might say. But as I’ve said before regarding business, failure resides in not trying, it does not reside in trying but failing. And as Christians we recognise we will never attain perfection except with the Grace of God. Yet, we still try.

    As far as Nangleator’s quip:”What would Jesus have had Caesar do?”, the answer is; exactly what Caesar did. Nothing occurs in Heaven or earth outside the sight of God. He gave us free will, it is up to us to use it resonsibly.

  22. Nangleator, you should be eternally greatful that Christians are in a position of power. Would you prefer athiests like Mao, Stalin or Hitler? Or perhaps Moslems like bin Laden or KSM? Christianity has evolved over the last 2000 years from victimhood to repression to the opressor to the enabler of Freedom and Enlightenment. Without the Christianity of our Framers and Leaders we would not have the unique American Persona we currently enjoy. The very persona which allows us on this site to say what we think without fear of reprisal. You see my friend, Freedom as Western Civilization today enjoys it could not exist but with the belief system afforded by Christianity. That is why it never existed before.

    You’re welcome!

  23. “Jesus’ philosophy …”

    Sometimes your quivering indignation -the unintentional black humor of the godless masochists – is just too damn funny. Like John Dominic Crossan, to repeat a figure I have employed twice before, hanging on a papier mache cross of his own manufacture.

    Thanks for the laugh, Nan.

  24. What would Jesus have had Caesar do?

    Krosh your enemies, see zem driven before you, and hear der lamentations of zer vomen!

    Ooops, that was Ahnold, not Jesus …

  25. OK, seriously, I’m guessing Jesus would want our political leaders to fight injustice and stand up to oppression, tyranny, and evil.

    Which is basically what we did in Iraq, but that’s another argument for another day.

  26. JohnC.: “As far as Nangleator’s quip:”What would Jesus have had Caesar do?”, the answer is; exactly what Caesar did. Nothing occurs in Heaven or earth outside the sight of God. He gave us free will, it is up to us to use it resonsibly.”

    That seems to contain a contradiction. ‘Exactly what Caesar did’ seems to suggest he was controlled by Heaven, yet Heaven gave us free will.

    My point was, Christianity doesn’t seem to keep people from doing very, very bad things. To hold it up and say we’d be screwed without it seems doubtful to me. Perhaps you’re right though, in a backhanded way. I believe the Founding Fathers were motivated by the example of the horrors of pure faith, rather than by the good done in the name of faith. As a wise man said, good men will do good things and bad men will do bad things, but only religion can make a good man do bad things.

    DNW, I was smiling as I wrote it. I’m glad you got a chuckle from it!

  27. We are our own worst enemies! And you right wingers on here are stooges of the corporatists

    Now you’re starting to sound like Blu.

    Hint: that is not a good thing.

  28. Exactly, Nangleator! These so-called fundamentalists cherry pick what they like when they like it, so they are not really absolutists, they are relativists.

    Uh, no. We simply believe what’s right is right, and give credit where due. It’s not a question of if the person involved has an R or a D after their name. It’s called being principled.

    PS you really seem to have a bug about this “Absolutist” thing for some reason, as if believing in objective moral standards is somehow a bad thing …

  29. Whomever you were quoting Nangleator, he was neither wise nor profound. I did not say “religion”, I said Christianity. And Christianity does not “make” anyone do anything. The underlying philosophy in Christianity “causes” people to try and do the right thing. Sure, there have been people who bastardize their faith to attain their own goals. There have been creeps in every faith in history. “Christianity doesn’t seem to keep people from doing very, very bad things.” Never claimed it did. But as Christians we attempt to see those who do those bad things and try to correct it. The sooner you atheists realize there is nothing perfect but God, the sooner you will realize you are not always correct. (A lesson wasted on Pho. I really believe the only difference between God and Pho is, God dosen’t believe He’s Pho.).

    Our Founding Fathers were motivated by the horrors of pure power, not of religion, and turned to the Faith of Our Fathers for salvation. They realized our Liberty flows from God, not government or a king. They made that the centerpiece of our Founding. Remember? “We are endowed by our Creator……” Emphases on Creator.

    Again, you’re welcome.

  30. My point was, Christianity doesn’t seem to keep people from doing very, very bad things.

    Actually, John is right. It is the absence of Christianity that allowed people to do very, very bad things. The 20th century is a prime example. God got thrown out the window by “progressive” Europeans, and look what happened. Dictators arose who assumed God-like powers and then proceeded to act like, well, Satan.

  31. I was paraphrasing Christopher Hitchens. I don’t know his politics. I suspect he’s conservative, due to his support of the war in Iraq.

    Oh, and what makes you think I’m an atheist? I criticize the actions and words of religious people often, when I see hypocrisy. I sometimes criticize the Bible, when I see people claiming it is both literal and true. But I haven’t stated my own religion.

    Oh, and many of the Founding Fathers were deists, not Christians: http://freethought.mbdojo.com/foundingfathers.html

  32. To hold it up and say we’d be screwed without it seems doubtful to me.

    Well, it would be interesting to imagine the world if Christianity had never existed. I suspect it would be far, far worse. I do recall an old episode of Star Trek where they landed on a planet that was basically founded on the principles of the Roman Empire, only with 20th century technology. They still had gladiator fights, only they were on TV, and the legionaires had submachine guns instead of swords.

    I suspect a present world without Christianity would resemble that. Or, maybe worse.

  33. Your words led me to believe you are an athiest. If you are not, I appologize. And “many” of the Founding Fathers were not deists (whatever the hell that is), SOME were. Most were Christians and those who weren’t signed on to the Christian principles espoused in the Declaration and the Constitution. If you are trying to tell me the the underlying philosophy of those two great documents are not based on the Christian faith and how it applies to the Human Condition, You are just plain wrong.

  34. I believe the Founding Fathers were motivated by the example of the horrors of pure faith, rather than by the good done in the name of faith.

    Not quite. I do believe the Founders were rightly concerned about what happens when the government establishes an “Official” Church, to the exclusion of all others, and the squabbling and oppression that can then ensue (think Catholics under the Church of England). But they certainly weren’t opposed to religious faith per se, indeed, as John pointed out, they most specifically put in a reference to our Creator in the Declaration of Independence.

  35. (A lesson wasted on Pho. I really believe the only difference between God and Pho is, God dosen’t believe He’s Pho.).

    That’s absolutely hilarious, John!

  36. Eric to Perry:

    “… you really seem to have a bug about this “Absolutist” thing for some reason, as if believing in objective moral standards is somehow a bad thing …”

    Perry is an absolutist as he has explicitly admitted and affirmed: An absolute subjectivist.

  37. BTW, the web site you cited is pure revisionist history. You forget, I lived in Philadelphia growing up. I sat in Christ’s Church in the very pews the Founding Fathers sat in. I went to the Friend’s Meeting House where Franklin and others worshipped and were married. Don’t try to pull that anti-religion crap on me.

  38. Eric: “Well, it would be interesting to imagine the world if Christianity had never existed. I suspect it would be far, far worse.”

    You’re assuming morals only come from Christianity, or the best ones, anyway. I disagree. I think morality is in our blood and arises from social living, much as languages and manners do.

    If you think altruism and love only comes from a religious foundation, tell me which religion this dog believes in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgjyhKN_35g

    No need to apologize about assuming I’m an atheist. I was, for most of my life. Agnostic now. Yes, I can’t make up my mind.

  39. Our Founding Fathers were motivated by the horrors of pure power, not of religion

    I believe that is correct. Indeed, one of the core differences between conservatives and liberals is that we, like the Founders, fear and distrust the concentration of government power, and those who lust after it. That, ultimately, seems to be the root of all evil.

    People complain about the “Evils” of religion, but that is nothing compared to the evil of all-powerful government divorced from religious principles. Case in point: the Inquisition supposedly killed about 30,000 people over a span of several hundred years. The Nazis and Communists killed tens of millions in just a few decades. That should tell you which is worse, religion, or the absence of same.

  40. JohnC wrote:

    “Perry, I resent being called a ” so-called fundamentalist”. I am a Christian and am not a so-called anything. If you don’t like Christians that’s okay with me but you need not slander or belittle my beliefs while doing so.

    Awhile back Pho went after Dana Pico’s daughters and slandered them. Now you seem to have license to go after my faith to make a political point. Frankly, I don’t appreciate either attack.

    You seem to have a very bad opinion of people of the Christian faith. I do not know why that is unless you see that we don’t always live up to our own expectations. Unfortunately, we don’t. But that doesn’t mean we don’t try. I would like to point out that we are the first to admit that. As Christians we have urealistically high expectaions of ourselves, unreachable you might say. But as I’ve said before regarding business, failure resides in not trying, it does not reside in trying but failing. And as Christians we recognise we will never attain perfection except with the Grace of God. Yet, we still try.

    As far as Nangleator’s quip:”What would Jesus have had Caesar do?”, the answer is; exactly what Caesar did. Nothing occurs in Heaven or earth outside the sight of God. He gave us free will, it is up to us to use it resonsibly.”

    Along with the admission that he is a subjective absolutist, Perry has stated that he was in the past what he termed an “Evangelical” Christian.

    To what extent he really was, or what he had been before, is anyone’s guess.

    But in taking him at his own word, that he once was, and now isn’t; it says something about “his own judgment about his own judgment”.

    My own take on Perry, is that he could best be described – and I mean this non-pejoratively and merely descriptively – as a kind of main-chance hedonist, who has and continues to enjoy grazing on whatever sociopolitical opportunities he can insinuatingly use to increase his personal satisfaction level.

    He also gives some indication of acknowledging that as a matter of his own ideological principles he has been socially bought and paid for, and that, as a result, he is willing to unstintingly cough up the goods when the baliff comes calling.

    But I could make no prediction as to whether he would willingly take the walk or not when the representative of the dispensers of all good things in life came to collect.

    The nutcase from NZ is another matter altogether. All he cares about is that someone is there to lance his boils and clip his toenails while he moans about the pointlessness of his life to an unwilling and nauseated audience.

  41. You’re assuming morals only come from Christianity, or the best ones, anyway. I disagree. I think morality is in our blood and arises from social living, much as languages and manners do.

    A couple points. One, if religion didn’t promote morality, then why did the world go to shit when religion was explicitly rejected? John mentioned Stalin, Hitler, and Mao. They rejected religion, and murdered tens of millions. Indeed, they set themselves up as “gods”, cults of personality I think is the correct term.

    Also, even as atheist Ayn Rand asserted, humans are not born with morality implanted in their genes. It has to be learned. And that learning has to have an ultimate source. For most of us, that’s God.

    As I once opined to Perry (who seems to scoff at the idea of a God based moral system), the reason we live in a generally just and enlightened democratic society is in large part the 3,000 years of Judeo-Christian moral tradition that has shaped our culture. Absent that, we might be living like the Vikings, the Visigoths, or the Aztecs, societies noted for their violence and bloodthirstiness.

  42. If you think altruism and love only comes from a religious foundation, tell me which religion this dog believes in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgjyhKN_35g

    Obviously I can’t analyze an animal’s psychology, but if I had to guess, that dog was raised in a loving (and probably Christian) home, and absorbed much of its values from its owners. I’m not sure a feral dog (or cat) would have behaved the same way. I mean, Nature, as the saying goes, is red in tooth and claw. Survival of the fittest and all that.

  43. Eric: “Case in point: the Inquisition”

    You’re holding up the Inquisition as an example of the evils of government… and not religion… Oh, my.

    “Christopher Hitchens is a known atheist…”

    You’re acting like he has cooties. In fact, he calls himself an anti-theist. So when he backs an idea, it means it seems logical to him. It isn’t anyone’s dogma. That’s like a seal of approval to me.

    “Also, even as atheist Ayn Rand asserted, humans are not born with morality implanted in their genes. It has to be learned.”

    I agree. But I think it’s learned through interactions with others in a society. Why did the dog do it? How did the dog learn that? Did God put it in the dog’s head just to give me something to mess with your head?

  44. I was paraphrasing Christopher Hitchens. I don’t know his politics. I suspect he’s conservative, due to his support of the war in Iraq.

    Hitchens is an interesting breed of cat. For most of his career a solid Man of the Left, 9/11 seems to have changed him somehow. He saw evil for what it was, and could no longer abide the Left’s traditional knee-jerk blame America mentality. The Jihadists and Saddam Hussein, while separate entities, both struck him as a form of barbarism that the civilized world had a duty to confront. He seems to loathe oppression in whatever form it comes, and to his credit, puts principle over politics.

    While I do not agree with his atheism, at least he has the guts to take on radical Islam, something his fellow skeptic Richard Dawkins seems rather loathe to do.

  45. Eric: “Case in point: the Inquisition”
    You’re holding up the Inquisition as an example of the evils of government… and not religion… Oh, my.

    No, Nang. I’m comparing the Inquisition, which people cite as an example of religion gone bad, to the far worse horrors of the atheist regimes of Hitler, Stalin, and Mao. The 20th century notoriously saw the rejection of religion by various assorted “Intellectuals”, and we can all see the results.

  46. Oh. Well, Hitler was Christian, whether or not you reject him now. But, frankly, I think those three guys were going to be jerks no matter what else they believed in.

    This concept: “…the Left’s traditional knee-jerk blame America mentality.” is odd. I don’t think any Americans felt that way after 9/11. Some of us just said, “Hold on… let’s make sure we’re attacking the right people, and in the right way. And let’s not shred the Constitution to do it.” And for that we have been considered treasonous.

  47. Eric: “I think you have a mistaken notion of the term “Imperialist”.”

    Mirriam-Webster says:

    1 : imperial government, authority, or system
    2 : the policy, practice, or advocacy of extending the power and dominion of a nation especially by direct territorial acquisitions or by gaining indirect control over the political or economic life of other areas; broadly : the extension or imposition of power, authority, or influence

    No, Eric, I think you are the one who has the wrong notion.

    Let me pose a hypothetical: Suppose the Mossad had intelligence that located a Hamas cell in Detroit, comprised of American citizens of Arab ancestry and then reacted, without even obtaining permission from American authorities, by sending in a hit squad which took the cell out, in the process destroying neighboring homes and lives. What is your response?

    Please, anyone, feel free to respond.

    In actuality, this hypothetical is not far from the truth! It is consistent with the way the Mossad operates as we speak!

  48. DNW: “Perry is an absolutist as he has explicitly admitted and affirmed: An absolute subjectivist.”

    Whatever that is, I don’t know. But what I do suggest, DNW, is that you are an absolute relativist, based on all the cherry picking and pontification you do on here.

  49. “Let me pose a hypothetical: Suppose the Mossad had intelligence that located a Hamas cell in Detroit, comprised of American citizens of Arab ancestry and then reacted, without even obtaining permission from American authorities, by sending in a hit squad which took the cell out, in the process destroying neighboring homes and lives. What is your response?

    Please, anyone, feel free to respond”

    So how are we to know they didn’t blow themselves and their neighbors up?

    Is the collateral damage limited to modern liberals, or does it include morally edified human beings too?

    Let me pose you an alternate case.

    The Mossad discovers that there is a cell of active Hamas sympathizer terrorists dwelling in Toronto, who have been successfully leveraging the Canadian government’s amnesty provisions.

    Canada has been a staging area for Islamist terrorists as we all know (Cite the Millennium Bomber).

    The Mossad agents kill the Hamas agents in public, and on the street, while accidentally frightening passerby Celine Dion so badly that she can never screech again.

    The Israelis then flee west through Ontario to the Canadian border with the US; there, stealing a rowboat and taking it across the Detroit strait before mysteriously appearing at my summer place on Harsen’s Island in hopes of finding shelter for the night.

    Moral Question: What do I serve them as a celebratory dinner before sending them on their way? Is adherence to Kosher law recommended?

  50. “If you think altruism and love only comes from a religious foundation, tell me which religion this dog believes in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgjyhKN_35g

    Obviously I can’t analyze an animal’s psychology, but if I had to guess, that dog was raised in a loving (and probably Christian) home, and absorbed much of its values from its owners. I’m not sure a feral dog (or cat) would have behaved the same way. I mean, Nature, as the saying goes, is red in tooth and claw. Survival of the fittest and all that.”

    A gregarious or animal howling for it’s mate, or seeking to aid one of its kind tells us only a limited amount, if anything at all, about the nature or value of particular moral sentiments.

    What could be more self-sacrificing than a termite? Yet none apart from Perry or the Troll would actually wish to be one.

    One of the ironies of this ongoing debate is how the left, seeing the scientific handwriting on the wall, has begun to abandon their radical “nurture only” position on human nature and the foundation of moral sentiments, and attempt to co-opt part of the natural law argument.

    By this means, they also hope to avoid the two edged forensic consequences of their former relativism; wherein people granted their premise for the sake of argument and then said in effect, “So, apart from the socially conditioned legal difficulties that I might become involved in, it’s ok to kill you afterall?”

  51. Perry, was it contained to the muslim section of Detroit? If it was, then I would say “job well done”. I jest.

    Besides, Mossad doesn’t go in blowin’ crap up. They do it swiftly and quietly.

  52. Oh. Well, Hitler was Christian, whether or not you reject him now.

    Not really. I don’t have an exact quote, but Hitler supposedly once referred to Christianity as a “Religion for weaklings”. His views seemed to be much more in tune with Neitzsche [sp?] than Christ.

    In any event, the Nazi Regime explicity rejected Christian moral teaching. As Art Downs once put it – Albert Speer’s plans for a New Berlin did not include any churches. Nazism, to the extent it involved religion at all, seemed to mix a love for the pagan Teutonic gods with a blend of Far Eastern mysticism. The swastica was, in fact, a reverse version of an ancient Hindu symbol.

  53. Awhile back Pho went after Dana Pico’s daughters and slandered them.
    Cite?

    Maybe he was thinking of John H’s daughter. Either way, it was just plain scummy.

  54. Eric: “I think you have a mistaken notion of the term “Imperialist”.”
    Mirriam-Webster says:
    1 : imperial government, authority, or system
    2 : the policy, practice, or advocacy of extending the power and dominion of a nation especially by direct territorial acquisitions or by gaining indirect control over the political or economic life of other areas; broadly : the extension or imposition of power, authority, or influence
    No, Eric, I think you are the one who has the wrong notion.

    Then why did we set up democracies in Germany, Japan, and Iraq? If we wanted to conquer these countries, we could have just done so and ruled them directly. Note that when Saddam Hussein was tried, convicted, and hanged, it was an Iraq court that did so, not us.

    I think you’re being a bit paranoid with this “Imperialism” stuff.

  55. Let me pose a hypothetical: Suppose the Mossad had intelligence that located a Hamas cell in Detroit, comprised of American citizens of Arab ancestry and then reacted

    Actually, Israel did basically just that when they abducted Eichmann from South America, brought him back to Israel, then tried and hanged him. Granted, it was a rather bold move, but in the end, justice was served.

    Anyway, I’m not quite sure where your anti-Israel paranoia comes from. They are, after all, the only modern civilized democracy in the Middle East.

  56. This concept: “…the Left’s traditional knee-jerk blame America mentality.” is odd. I don’t think any Americans felt that way after 9/11. Some of us just said, “Hold on… let’s make sure we’re attacking the right people, and in the right way. And let’s not shred the Constitution to do it.” And for that we have been considered treasonous.

    Right. And that’s exactly what we said after Pearl Harbor. Well, it was more like “let’s kill the fuckers, and let God sort ‘em out later”.

    Anyway, I’m not attacking you. You seem like a decent chap. But I am attacking the Far Left, which has for years asserted that anything that goes wrong in the world is America’s fault. In fact, it is exactly this sort of knee-jerk reaction that Christopher Hitchens, to his credit, seems to have rejected.

  57. Maybe he was thinking of John H’s daughter. Either way, it was just plain scummy.

    Uh-huh. Now, think for a moment – what exactly did I say about PB’s daughter, who draws a government paycheck?

  58. Uh-huh. Now, think for a moment – what exactly did I say about PB’s daughter, who draws a government paycheck?

    You didn’t say anything about PB’s daughter. You did, however, say some stuff about John H’s daughter, most of it pretty scummy.

    Of course, as a Left Winger, you have no class. Indeed, I don’t think you even know what the word means.

  59. As suspected, you’re unable to answer a straight question.

    What exactly did I say that was “scummy” about PB’s daughter, Eric?

  60. He won’t answer, Phoenician. Instead he returns with a slam, full of hatred and anger for those he does not like, a sign of both intellectual weakness and social immaturity.

    And no anti-Israel paranoia here, just the facts, and a real concern about their behavior in the region, as I would also say about certain Arab and Persian extremists.

    My question re the hypothetical was: “What is your response?”

    So far, no response!

  61. Quit making excuses Pho.

    We all know damned well you acted like a pig.

    If you had any decency, you would have apologized to John H. But as a low class left wing loser, we know you have no such stuff.

  62. He won’t answer, Phoenician.

    Of course not. It’s a lot easier to rant about liberals being “scummy” than to try to examine the point being made. Eric’s lack of intelligence makes this too difficult, anyway.

  63. So, Perry, does Pho pay you to suck his dick, or do you just do it for free?

    In short, to quote John H., are you a whore or a slut?

  64. Eric quoting a fellow Leftie: We are our own worst enemies! And you right wingers on here are stooges of the corporatists

    and saying…Now you’re starting to sound like Blu.

    Hint: that is not a good thing.

    Yeah, and sound like James Madison, and Abe Lincoln, and Albert Einstein, and Thomas Jefferson, and Eisenhower. Gosh, that would be “kooooooky”. What did they know?

  65. Example: Madison- “The growing wealth acquired by the corporations never fails to be a source of abuses.” I’ll stop quoting, when you actually realize it, and stop sounding so consistently ignorant. I tire of it too.

  66. Eric and John H. carry on so much about “class” like it’s just all about $$$. Since you are big into the Jesus fan club, J and E, didn’t Jesus teach you better?

  67. Eric: “So, Perry, does Pho pay you to suck his dick, or do you just do it for free?

    In short, to quote John H., are you a whore or a slut?”

    Eric, you are a sick puppy, a 40ish year old behaving like an undisciplined/unloved 13 year old! What is your problem, dude?

  68. Blubonnet: “Perry, I think they need to realize some things, that we know. “

    Right, Blubonnet. I see this conflict as between extremists on both sides, the rocket throwers on one side, the war-mongers on the other, neither of whom has any regard whatsoever for innocent civilians, instead regard only for their political and territorial aspirations.

    This is a continuing tragedy of overwhelming proportions, one in which we have been involved, more on one side than on the other, for more than a century.

  69. Eric, you are a sick puppy, a 40ish year old behaving like an undisciplined/unloved 13 year old! What is your problem, dude?

    Well I never see you complain when Pho acts this way, which is quite often. One sidedness? Nah, couldn’t be …

    Anyway, John H. Is right. I shouldn’t let myself sink to Pho’s level. That would be, well, childish.

  70. I see this conflict as between extremists on both sides, the rocket throwers on one side, the war-mongers on the other, neither of whom has any regard whatsoever for innocent civilians, instead regard only for their political and territorial aspirations.

    Do we really need more of this “Moral equivalency” stuff, the whole “The other side is bad, but we’re equally bad” nonsense?

    It’s not our side that is intentionally targeting civilians, using suicide bombers, etc.

  71. “It’s not our side that is intentionally targeting civilians, using suicide bombers, etc.”

    Let me give you a dose of your own medicine.

    You can be either pro-life or not pro-life. You are obviously not pro-life, because you are a war-monger.

    Moreover, many more civilians have been killed by Israelis in both Lebanon and Gaza than by Gazans, for which Israel has been widely condemned for their overreaction in both cases. But you could care less.

    I understand well, Eric, that to you an Arab life is not worth as much as an Israeli life. To me, it is all deplorable, as I am an activist against war, for peace.

  72. Moreover, many more civilians have been killed by Israelis in both Lebanon and Gaza than by Gazans, for which Israel has been widely condemned for their overreaction in both cases.

    Condemned by left wing loons, moral relativists who see terrorism and fighting terrorism as the same thing.

    I understand well, Eric, that to you an Arab life is not worth as much as an Israeli life. To me, it is all deplorable, as I am an activist against war, for peace.

    An activist for appeasement is more like it.

  73. Hitler: “”My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God’s truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow myself to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice… And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows. For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people.”

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