Some Thoughts on Obama’s Muslim Outreach Program

I must admit that as I write this, I have a brain that has been a bit taxed this evening in some introspective thought as well as some challenging dialogue on philosophy and government. But I am bouncing back long enough to offer some thoughts on President Obama’s speech from Cairo. I have to admit that there were things that I liked and things that I did not like. I applaud that the President feels that the right thing to do is to go out and kiss and make up with the entire world. He is doing so in gripping fashion. I think it is a waste of time, and I further think that the time has come for a Democrat to man up. But I don’t imagine that is going to happen anytime soon, so let’s stick to the speech shall we?

Militants watching Obama SpeechThis speech was one that I have been waiting to hear. I knew it was coming a bit ago. And I had my ideas about what it would be. I have my own thoughts as to what I think needs to be said, but I will save those for the end of the article. For now let’s focus on what was said. I read four different sites to see the opinions and criticisms of the speech. I stuck with the big ones, CNN, ABC News, Fox News, and MSNBC. As expected the coverage had a bit of bias on each, but I didn’t feel that any of them went out of line too far. Interestingly, the picture I posted of the militants watching the speech came not from Fox News, as I am sure those on the left here would imagine, but from MSNBC. How odd is that?

The President’s speech has been long awaited as many have been waiting to hear it ever since the trip to the middle east was announced. Once delivered I felt as though the speech was certainly one that covered a wide range of topics relevant to the muslim world and was quite ambitious in what it seemed he was saying and apparently trying to accomplish. I figured the best way for me to offer my thoughts was to throw out some of the things he shared and offer my commentary in between. I will not copy the entire speech here, just the parts that stuck out to me. 

We meet at a time of great tension between the United States and Muslims around the world — tension rooted in historical forces that go beyond any current policy debate. The relationship between Islam and the West includes centuries of coexistence and cooperation, but also conflict and religious wars. More recently, tension has been fed by colonialism that denied rights and opportunities to many Muslims, and a Cold War in which Muslim-majority countries were too often treated as proxies without regard to their own aspirations. Moreover, the sweeping change brought by modernity and globalization led many Muslims to view the West as hostile to the traditions of Islam.

Violent extremists have exploited these tensions in a small but potent minority of Muslims. The attacks of September 11, 2001 and the continued efforts of these extremists to engage in violence against civilians has led some in my country to view Islam as inevitably hostile not only to America and Western countries, but also to human rights. All this has bred more fear and more mistrust. So long as our relationship is defined by our differences, we will empower those who sow hatred rather than peace, those who promote conflict rather than the cooperation that can help all of our people achieve justice and prosperity. And this cycle of suspicion and discord must end.

OK I am with him so far on this. I think that he is making a good statement, that some of the hostility that comes from muslims is justified. They haven’t always been treated so nice. But I get the feeling from what I am hearing that the President feels as though the Muslims are justified in feeling the way that they do, although it was not the American people who did those bad things to muslims. But Americans and their fears and mistrusts are not justified, even though they have been attacked as well. 

I’ve come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles — principles of justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.

I am not with him on some of these points. Since when has Islam shown itself, at any point, to share the common principle of tolerance? By tolerance does he mean that women are tolerated in their society because they bear children? Or by tolerance is he speaking of the belief that the world should be converted to Islam or be eradicated?

Obama in CairoNow part of this conviction is rooted in my own experience. I’m a Christian, but my father came from a Kenyan family that includes generations of Muslims. As a boy, I spent several years in Indonesia and heard the call of the azaan at the break of dawn and at the fall of dusk. As a young man, I worked in Chicago communities where many found dignity and peace in their Muslim faith.

I sure wish we had some concrete proof about anything having to do with his birth, upbringing, or religion. I hate reading stuff like this because I know so many people are dismissing the rest of the speech simply because he seems to have so much to hide. At least he isn’t allowing any of it to go to the public, so it seems like he has a lot to hide. I don’t know the answers to whether or not he does.

As a student of history, I also know civilization’s debt to Islam. It was Islam — at places like Al-Azhar — that carried the light of learning through so many centuries, paving the way for Europe’s Renaissance and Enlightenment. It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra; our magnetic compass and tools of navigation; our mastery of pens and printing; our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed. Islamic culture has given us majestic arches and soaring spires; timeless poetry and cherished music; elegant calligraphy and places of peaceful contemplation. And throughout history, Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality. 

Again I am not really feeling the whole racial equality and religious tolerance part of the muslim faith. And while it is certainly nice of Obama to allow credit for just about everything to go to the Islamic faith, many of those things are well disputed by scholars. 

So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed. That experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn’t. And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.

I don’t want to be petty, sir, but that is not anywhere or any way a part of your responsibility as the President of the United States. Not sure where you came up with that one, but I checked around, it simply isn’t in the job description. We have enough to worry about without you failing to keep focused on the things that ARE in your realm of responsibility. 

But that same principle must apply to Muslim perceptions of America. (Applause.) Just as Muslims do not fit a crude stereotype, America is not the crude stereotype of a self-interested empire. The United States has been one of the greatest sources of progress that the world has ever known. We were born out of revolution against an empire. We were founded upon the ideal that all are created equal, and we have shed blood and struggled for centuries to give meaning to those words — within our borders, and around the world. We are shaped by every culture, drawn from every end of the Earth, and dedicated to a simple concept: E pluribus unum — “Out of many, one.”

About time you had something nice to say about the country you are in charge of. 

Now, much has been made of the fact that an African American with the name Barack Hussein Obama could be elected President. (only by your people Mr. Obama, anyone else who even mentions it is labeled a racists or an extremist) But my personal story is not so unique. The dream of opportunity for all people has not come true for everyone in America, but its promise exists for all who come to our shores — and that includes nearly 7 million American Muslims in our country today who, by the way, enjoy incomes and educational levels that are higher than the American average.

What??? Higher than the American average. Where is Chris Devine to put Obama in his place. This is not a land of opportunity. If you aren’t rich and white, you need government to take care of you!! There is no way that 7 million muslims could come to our country and prosper. If that were true, then the whole argument that government is needed to make this happen becomes flawed. Surely Obama is either lying or mistaken. 

Moreover, freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one’s religion (unless you are a christian). That is why there is a mosque in every state in our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That’s why the United States government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab and to punish those who would deny it.

I would like the United States government to go to court to protect those same rights for christians in the United States. The right to carry a bible to school. The right to practice religion in the way they see fit. The right to have Santa Clause in the Christmas parade. 

For we have learned from recent experience that when a financial system weakens in one country, prosperity is hurt everywhere. When a new flu infects one human being, all are at risk (Not True). When one nation pursues a nuclear weapon, the risk of nuclear attack rises for all nations (True). When violent extremists operate in one stretch of mountains, people are endangered across an ocean (not necessarily). When innocents in Bosnia and Darfur are slaughtered, that is a stain on our collective conscience (not mine, I didn’t kill them). That is what it means to share this world in the 21st century. That is the responsibility we have to one another as human beings (You mean socialism on a global scale instead of a national one?).

Now, that does not mean we should ignore sources of tension. Indeed, it suggests the opposite: We must face these tensions squarely. And so in that spirit, let me speak as clearly and as plainly as I can about some specific issues that I believe we must finally confront together.

The first issue that we have to confront is violent extremism in all of its forms.

Fist vs ShakeIn Ankara, I made clear that America is not — and never will be — at war with Islam. (Applause.) We will, however, relentlessly confront violent extremists who pose a grave threat to our security — because we reject the same thing that people of all faiths reject: the killing of innocent men, women, and children. And it is my first duty as President to protect the American people.

The situation in Afghanistan demonstrates America’s goals, and our need to work together. Over seven years ago, the United States pursued al Qaeda and the Taliban with broad international support. We did not go by choice; we went because of necessity. I’m aware that there’s still some who would question or even justify the events of 9/11. But let us be clear: Al Qaeda killed nearly 3,000 people on that day. The victims were innocent men, women and children from America and many other nations who had done nothing to harm anybody. And yet al Qaeda chose to ruthlessly murder these people, claimed credit for the attack, and even now states their determination to kill on a massive scale. They have affiliates in many countries and are trying to expand their reach. These are not opinions to be debated; these are facts to be dealt with.

OK, some of your facts are facts, and some may not be. None of us know the truth. But there is much truth in what he saying here. And I am glad that he at least came right out and stated the belief of the average American so that the Muslim world can hear first hand what the issue is. 

Let me also address the issue of Iraq. Unlike Afghanistan, Iraq was a war of choice that provoked strong differences in my country and around the world. Although I believe that the Iraqi people are ultimately better off without the tyranny of Saddam Hussein, I also believe that events in Iraq have reminded America of the need to use diplomacy and build international consensus to resolve our problems whenever possible. (Applause.) Indeed, we can recall the words of Thomas Jefferson, who said: “I hope that our wisdom will grow with our power, and teach us that the less we use our power the greater it will be.”

A war of choice. So now we are using campaign rhetoric on the global campaign trail again are we. Nice that your opinion is that the warmongering Bush was on a personal vendetta. Horrible that you, as the leading spokesman for the entire country, just told the entire Arab world that we attacked Iraq on a whim with no reason at all.  

So America will defend itself, respectful of the sovereignty of nations and the rule of law. And we will do so in partnership with Muslim communities which are also threatened. The sooner the extremists are isolated and unwelcome in Muslim communities, the sooner we will all be safer.

About time that was said. But we should have been much more clear in saying that if you are supporting terrorism, and tolerating extremism in your community, you are part of the problem, and therefore put your family, your community, and your nation at risk. That is the reality the muslims must face.

 

PAY ATTENTION!

PAY ATTENTION!

The second major source of tension that we need to discuss is the situation between Israelis, Palestinians and the Arab world. America’s strong bonds with Israel are well known. This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied.

I will not cover the Israeli / Palestinian conflict here today. He dedicated a great deal of time to this in the speech and I felt as though he addressed it both fairly and accurately. For more details watch the entire speech. I cut out about 8 paragraphs here. 

The third source of tension is our shared interest in the rights and responsibilities of nations on nuclear weapons. 

This issue has been a source of tension between the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran. For many years, Iran has defined itself in part by its opposition to my country, and there is in fact a tumultuous history between us. In the middle of the Cold War, the United States played a role in the overthrow of a democratically elected Iranian government. Since the Islamic Revolution, Iran has played a role in acts of hostage-taking and violence against U.S. troops and civilians. This history is well known. Rather than remain trapped in the past, I’ve made it clear to Iran’s leaders and people that my country is prepared to move forward. The question now is not what Iran is against, but rather what future it wants to build.

I recognize it will be hard to overcome decades of mistrust, but we will proceed with courage, rectitude, and resolve. There will be many issues to discuss between our two countries, and we are willing to move forward without preconditions on the basis of mutual respect. But it is clear to all concerned that when it comes to nuclear weapons, we have reached a decisive point. This is not simply about America’s interests. It’s about preventing a nuclear arms race in the Middle East that could lead this region and the world down a hugely dangerous path.

I understand those who protest that some countries have weapons that others do not. No single nation should pick and choose which nation holds nuclear weapons. And that’s why I strongly reaffirmed America’s commitment to seek a world in which no nations hold nuclear weapons. (Great, leftist gun control on a global scale). And any nation — including Iran — should have the right to access peaceful nuclear power if it complies with its responsibilities under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. That commitment is at the core of the treaty, and it must be kept for all who fully abide by it. And I’m hopeful that all countries in the region can share in this goal.

The fourth issue that I will address is democracy.

I know — I know there has been controversy about the promotion of democracy in recent years, and much of this controversy is connected to the war in Iraq. So let me be clear: No system of government can or should be imposed by one nation by any other.

Now this is a statement that I really liked hearing him say. Because I believe in the absolute sovereignty of other nations, we hold no right to force our belief about what their government should be on them. They are free to do whatever they want. Period. 

MIDEAST ISRAEL PALESTINIANS OBAMAThat does not lessen my commitment, however, to governments that reflect the will of the people. Each nation gives life to this principle in its own way, grounded in the traditions of its own people. America does not presume to know what is best for everyone, just as we would not presume to pick the outcome of a peaceful election. But I do have an unyielding belief that all people yearn for certain things: the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed; confidence in the rule of law and the equal administration of justice; government that is transparent and doesn’t steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose. These are not just American ideas; they are human rights. And that is why we will support them everywhere.

But wait a minute. You just said “No system of government can or should be imposed by one nation by any other” and you follow that up with essentially, “so long as the form of government that they choose on their own is one that we Americans agree with.” This sir, is completely contradictory. You either recognize that we cannot have a say in how other countries choose to live, or you don’t. There is no middle ground.

AUDIENCE MEMBER: Barack Obama, we love you! (Are you kidding me. Was this guy a plant?)

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Thank you. The fifth issue that we must address together is religious freedom.

Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance. We see it in the history of Andalusia and Cordoba during the Inquisition. I saw it firsthand as a child in Indonesia, where devout Christians worshiped freely in an overwhelmingly Muslim country. That is the spirit we need today. People in every country should be free to choose and live their faith based upon the persuasion of the mind and the heart and the soul. This tolerance is essential for religion to thrive, but it’s being challenged in many different ways.

Among some Muslims, there’s a disturbing tendency to measure one’s own faith by the rejection of somebody else’s faith. The richness of religious diversity must be upheld — whether it is for Maronites in Lebanon or the Copts in Egypt. (Applause.) And if we are being honest, fault lines must be closed among Muslims, as well, as the divisions between Sunni and Shia have led to tragic violence, particularly in Iraq.

Freedom of religion is central to the ability of peoples to live together. We must always examine the ways in which we protect it. For instance, in the United States, rules on charitable giving have made it harder for Muslims to fulfill their religious obligation. That’s why I’m committed to working with American Muslims to ensure that they can fulfill zakat.

Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance. When you begin with that statement and then follow it up with countless examples to the contrary, I don’t even feel the need to respond. As for the zakat. I have no problem with that. They are free to do what they want with their money, the same as me. 

The sixth issue that I want to address is women’s rights. (Applause.) I know and you can tell from this audience, that there is a healthy debate about this issue. I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal, but I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality. (Applause.) And it is no coincidence that countries where women are well educated are far more likely to be prosperous.

Now, let me be clear: Issues of women’s equality are by no means simply an issue for Islam. In Turkey, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, we’ve seen Muslim-majority countries elect a woman to lead. Meanwhile, the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life (bullshit), and in countries around the world.

obama-and-muslim-women_picI have to take a pause here. I know that there are a few women who will claim that women’s equality has not happened in America. To this I am forced to say bull. Women in this country have all the same rights as anyone else. They are not required to do more or less in order to conform to society. They are not repressed in any way. I know the argument is made about equal pay. But I am here to tell you the pay is not equal all over, and it has nothing to do with gender. So to make the statement to the world that “the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life” is not only dishonest, it is a slap in the face of America. I would expect a statement like this from a foreign leader trying to tear America down. But from our own President. It was a horrible thing to say.

Finally, I want to discuss economic development and opportunity.

I know that for many, the face of globalization is contradictory. The Internet and television can bring knowledge and information, but also offensive sexuality and mindless violence into the home. Trade can bring new wealth and opportunities, but also huge disruptions and change in communities. In all nations — including America — this change can bring fear. Fear that because of modernity we lose control over our economic choices, our politics, and most importantly our identities — those things we most cherish about our communities, our families, our traditions, and our faith.

But I also know that human progress cannot be denied. There need not be contradictions between development and tradition. Countries like Japan and South Korea grew their economies enormously while maintaining distinct cultures. The same is true for the astonishing progress within Muslim-majority countries from Kuala Lumpur to Dubai. In ancient times and in our times, Muslim communities have been at the forefront of innovation and education.

And this is important because no development strategy can be based only upon what comes out of the ground, nor can it be sustained while young people are out of work. Many Gulf states have enjoyed great wealth as a consequence of oil, and some are beginning to focus it on broader development. But all of us must recognize that education and innovation will be the currency of the 21st century — (applause) — and in too many Muslim communities, there remains underinvestment in these areas. I’m emphasizing such investment within my own country. And while America in the past has focused on oil and gas when it comes to this part of the world, we now seek a broader engagement.

Several paragraphs skipped at this point. 

It’s easier to start wars than to end them. It’s easier to blame others than to look inward. It’s easier to see what is different about someone than to find the things we share. But we should choose the right path, not just the easy path. There’s one rule that lies at the heart of every religion — that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us. (Applause.) This truth transcends nations and peoples — a belief that isn’t new; that isn’t black or white or brown; that isn’t Christian or Muslim or Jew. It’s a belief that pulsed in the cradle of civilization, and that still beats in the hearts of billions around the world. It’s a faith in other people, and it’s what brought me here today.

We have the power to make the world we seek, but only if we have the courage to make a new beginning, keeping in mind what has been written.

The Holy Koran tells us: “O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another.”

The Talmud tells us: “The whole of the Torah is for the purpose of promoting peace.”

The Holy Bible tells us: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” (Applause.)

The people of the world can live together in peace. We know that is God’s vision. Now that must be our work here on Earth.

Thank you. And may God’s peace be upon you. Thank you very much. Thank you. 

So there is the speech in a nutshell. The articles that I was reading were mostly offering commentary on the speech. I highly suggest that you go out and read some. Get a feel for how people are feeling about this from different perspectives. Personally I think the speech was a little too much ass kissing of muslims, but overall was good. I just think at some point we have to look at what is going on in the muslim world and be honest with ourselves and with them. “You guys are not doing much to help us like you… you get that right. I mean here I am the President of the Free World, kissing your ass. So how about a little help here. Stop blowing up buses and innocent people for dumb shit… “

So I look forward to what all of you thought about the speech. And the points that I made. So fire away. You can find the entire transcript here:

The White House – Press Office – Remarks by the President at Cairo University, 6-04-09

And a video of the speech here (lasts about 45 minutes):

YouTube – Lower Quality Version: President Obama Speaks to the Muslim World from Cairo, Egypt

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Comments

  1. Splinter says:

    What do you say Christians?

  2. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    To me, this is a typical Obama mix of saying some really good things, saying some really way way out there things, and somehow mixing it together in such as way that if you are not REALLY ANALYZING IT CAREFULLY it actually sounds pretty good to just about everyone who hears it.

    You gotta admit he has a real talent for this 🙂

    • I tend to agree. The master magician. Read all the words and take them literally.

      The man always says what he means. But he says it in ways most of us don’t hear.

      We must listen to his words not just hear them.

      Good Morning Peter
      JAC

      • JayDickB says:

        JAC – I like your analysis, but I think sometimes you have to extrapolate a bit from his words. They sometimes seem benign until you really think about the possibilities.

        • Yes, that is what I mean by listen. Its not the words but you have to really think about the cause/effect and where it can lead. What I see is quite often a mixed message on the surface, but a consistant one when you look at his words over time.

          I am always looking for those “progressive” catch phrases and slogans I have come accustomed to dealing with. That is the red flag for me. The Bulldookey detector goes off full blast.

          Then I start looking closer and always find the magicians trick. Hold out one thing in the right hand while moving something with the left. And yes, my choice of hands was deliberate.

          Good Morning to You JayDickB
          JAC

          • Danak13 says:

            May not agree with you JAC…but like your slight of hand.

            Top o’ th’ morn’ to ya.

            D13

          • JayDickB says:

            JAC, Backatcha

            I also have an internal red flag system that goes off often when Obama speaks.

            I used to think that Bill Clinton was the best politician I ever saw, but Barry may have him beat.

            Also, when I call someone a good politician, that is NOT intended to be a complement.

      • Alan F. says:

        For president Obama its not subliminal messages or any such. Its the sales pitch. What’s needed to make the sale in what’s seen as the current circumstance. He goes in chastising them in their own yard and it might as well be good old GWB making the rounds. He goes in telling them “what to do” and that America is the root of “all that’s good” and its game over. Why even bother showing up if you are merely going to hurl pro-America rhetoric around with a big shovel? Outside your borders America is as famous for “knowing what’s best and forcing it on you” as it is for being the home of Mickey Mouse, Coke and McDonalds. You’re never going to make the sale by starting off the pitch with “let me tell you what you want” which is exactly his problem in dealing with conservative America. He won’t say that to the other countries and shouldn’t as its narcissistic and self defeating to do such but he’s only willing to remove the blinders abroad. How queer is that?

        • Danak13 says:

          Because we can see through his rhetoric? Because most of the rest of the world has a Lemming mentality?

          We make our mistakes and will make more. We are not perfect and do not profess to be. Even as a sorta right centrist (someone labeled me that), B.O. is my President. I don’t like him, but is is my President. But, he is not entitled to “blind” support.

          I actually, as an American and Veteran, do not like forcing anything on anyone. But, like wise, I do not think, then, that we should be the policeman when someone gets stomped. The world does not like us too much and that is ok with me. I do not care…but the world used to respect us. The big boy on the block will always have detractors. Perhaps it is time to pull our money and protection back and settle our own ills and leave the rest of the world to take care of itself. How long will it be then that we will be determined to be selfish? Sigh!!!!

          Good morning to ya.

          D13

          • Alan F. says:

            You’re missing the point. Politics IS salesmanship. Some might wish it otherwise and that’s nice but welcome to the real world. One side always does what it wants because it won the day period. The best politicians sell well. Earning salesman of the month is getting your product through all the minor pitches and snagging that long term contract. It has nothing to do with right or left, up or down and in the extreme good or evil. Salesmanship is the steering mechanism of any government even a Dictatorship.

            As for withdrawing from world economics, you can’t get that genie back in the bottle. I’ve made the point elsewhere on this blog and many others that American business abroad in many cases has made its fortunes outside of their American business footprint. I know of many jobs in America that are in existence only to fulfill political obligations and in the capitalistic sense would have vanished long ago were it not for the profits made completely abroad. Its not a matter of military nor biggest stick at all.

            Canada’s nuclear tech has been a big part of America’s nuclear success. If you were to look it up, you’ll see we could be top 5 in under 2 years as a nuclear power with little effort but realize we’ve not had to be one yet. You guys cover our butts and we’ve had that in play since the beginning of the Cold War. Oh and thanks for that by the way.

  3. Man this guy has gall. I agree that some good things were said. It bothers me though that he leaves out many things that the US has done which is good, rather focuses on things we have done that is not so good. He acts as though he is the leader of the world rather than the President of the US.

    He is a dangerous man. His policys for the US basically circumvent the Constitution…Nationalizaton of the banks and car companies and borrowing/taxing and spending this nation into debt that will be near impossible to overcome. All the while, blaming everything that is wrong on the previous administration without taking responsibility for anything. After all…he won.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Kinda like a kid who says “I won this ball at a carnival and if you wanna play with it you are gonna play MY WAY or I am gonna take MY ball and go home!”

      The only difference is that Obama THINKS he has the power to say “if you wanna play with MY ball you are gonna play MY WAY or I am gonna take MY ball and SHOVE IT DOWN YOUR THROAT!”

      • Makes me want to say, “If you feel that way, take your ball and stick it up your @ss!!” 🙂

        • Danak13 says:

          Esom…I have no more room up my butt. It is already full of taxes and policies that have already been crammed up there.

          • Mine is full also. What’s interesting is how he intends to fit even more in. I don’t think he’s going to like the blowout he’s going to cause eventually. He’s gonna get dookey all over him! 🙂

            • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

              Esom,

              Thank you, that is the funniest thing I have heard and/or read all day!

              Good humor always has a large element of truth 🙂

  4. Good Morning all. USW, it seems that this is awakening a Sleeping Giant in you. This is going to be good!!

    What an @$$ kisser he is!! I don’t think he has the right to tell people in foreign countries how WE feel. He is so out of touch with the average American it’s laughable.

    I liked the part about people having a right to good government that is transparent and concerned about the will of the people. If you can find this country, I may consider moving there.

    He did have a few good points, but most of it is smoke and mirrors, a distraction from some real problems in America that he should be taking care of.

    • I agree with you totally. Honestly, the speech was selling the real agenda. Islam has nothing to do with the advancement of societies today. All religions are rooted back to Ancient Egyptian history and the Egyptians weren’t Muslims. Smoking mirrors and distraction was all this wonderful speech was…

  5. JayDickB says:

    Some commentators say that it is good to try to be nice to the Muslim world and that part of that effort must be to recognize our previous mistakes. They think the Muslims will respond in kind.

    Others say that the only things the Muslim world understands and respects are strength, power, and the willingness to use them. These say that talking about our country in any negative way shows weakness, which will earn only scorn from Muslims.

    I would be interested in others’ opinions on this dispute, particularly USW, BF, JAC, and PeterB. I tend to favor the second view. I have no problem with trying to reach out to the Muslim world, but I don’t think we should say negative things about our country in the process. I also don’t think reaching out will accomplish much.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      I will preface my comments by saying that I have not studied a lot of history of the Muslim world, so my thoughts are merely impressions based on what I know of medieval and modern history.

      I believe there to be factions of Muslims that tend to be pragmatic and interested in ongoing relations (especially trade so that their oil money keeps flowing) with the West, and these factions do not feel the NEED to convert the entire world to Islam.

      I also believe that there are factions of Muslims that believe that non-Muslims are heretics that must either be converted or exterminated.

      The key seems to be, which factions have the upper hand? Would the pragmatic factions really mind if the Western world was forcibly converted to Islam?

      My personal view is that it is necessary to show strength and power and a willingness to use them, at least in our own defense. I do NOT advocate pre-emptive strikes, even though in some ways this may SEEM the way to go.

      For example, if Iran indeed comes to posess nuclear weapons and professes a willingness to use these weapons to wipe Israel off of the face of the earth, is that professed willingness enough of a threat in order for us to strike Iran pre-emptively? Is it enough of a threat for Israel to strike Iran pre-emptively? In the case of the US, I would say no. In the case of Israel… I am not so sure, but I would still lean towards saying no.

      However, given that there are even SOME Muslims that believe that the West are heretics that must be converted or exterminated, the safest policy is the “Big Stick”. If the pragmatic Muslims are willing to deal with the fanatics and get them under control, then we can deal with them. I do not see any evidence of this happening; therefore, it is at least possible that the pragmatic Muslims at least tacitly approve of the beliefs, methods, and tactics of the fanatics.

      We have to operate under the assumption that they do indeed at least tacitly approve of what is going on unless we see actual evidence to the contrary. That being the case, dealing with them from a position of strength and power and a willingness to use it IF NECESSARY is the safest course of action.

      We do have to be very careful here. If we hold that one of our core principles is to initiate no violence against the non-violent it is absolutely necessary to define when the line is clearly crossed.

      We cannot violate the soverignty of other nations, but we cannot tolerate the initiation of violence by other nations either.

    • JayD:

      Your statement is true: “Others say that the only things the Muslim world understands and respects are strength, power, and the willingness to use them. These say that talking about our country in any negative way shows weakness, which will earn only scorn from Muslims.”

      Others do say this. But there is a flaw in the statement. All muslims are not the same. Islam is not practiced uniformaly across the middle east. Why?

      Because there are hundreds of tribes, families and other groups. Some have acquired National identities based on the arbitrary lines given to them, by the Brits and supported by U.S.A. et al. Iranians are not really Iranians, they are Persians and they know it.

      While we need to make some peace there and that includes recognizing our mistakes, it is dangerous to show weakness in doing so. I think he tried to thread that needle but missed. A little to weak and as USW pointed out he distorted some things to increase the “sincerety” of the apology. But I don’t think it is Islam or the Muslims that see it as weakness. It is part of the tribal and racial cultures that existed even before Islam came along.

      I’ll give some more thought but that is the first thing that stuck out.
      JAC

  6. Birdman says:

    Obama is not going to change the muslim view of the U.S. with a speech but he thinks he can. He is a narcissist and we really don’t know alot about the man because he doesn’t want us to know the truth. I don’t think he likes american exceptionalism and wants a new world order. Basically he wants world socialism. He wants to tear the U.S. down because he doesn’t believe there should be super powers.

    Islam is not just a religion but a way of life. I don’t think Islam is tolerant of any other belief system. You are either Mulim or an infidel. In the U.S. we protect Islam as a religion but I’m not sure that’s wise. Since 9/11, we’ve bent over backwards to protect Muslims.

    What would happen if we pulled all troops out of Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait or any other area of the middle east? Would that change anything? Would our defense be diminished? I don’t think it would. What would happen if we pulled troops from all forward deployed areas (Europe, S. Korea, etc.)? All I want to do is trade with various countries for goods and resources and I don’t think I have to defend them. If you want to sale me oil for $200 a barrel then have at it.

  7. I think he made some good points, and some bad ones. We dont have a large number of muslims compared to other parts of the world. Our largest group of people that are goiing into the this religion are going it when in prison. I do think that we need to hold a very firm line when it comes to this. Say yes we want to like and get along, but the blowing up of buildings and people is not going to be tolerated. But I also believe that protecting our country FIRST is more important. The topic of women was good, needed to be pointed out how they treat their women. Not that I think that is going to change anytime soon.

  8. hehe did you expect him to go up there and tell the muslim crowd how much Islam sucks and point out all the flaws in there religion and actions? I take it your not a public speaker because things dont go so well when you dont pander to the crowd I assure you.

    As someone from the UK I thought it was a good speech, trying to get back into diplomacy instead of blowing things up is the way to go. The UK and the US have been involved in some very shady crap in the middle east in the last 50 years, which has culminated with us being bitten on the ass. As far as the Muslim V Christianity thing we have both done some bad stuff in the past, we have advanced from them regarding womens rights but that has only been in the last 100 years to get full rights. Women are still today paid less than their male counterparts and unfortunately there is still alot of sexual harressment going on in some workplaces.

    As far as Iraq goes I know alot of the UK wish we hadnt gone, there are some groups trying to send Tony Blair to the Hague for war crimes. Iraq is a stain we wont be able to wash off anytime soon, every innocent person killed over there just weakens our nations security and we have killed alot of innocent people.

    Why you ask would someone from the UK comment on a US presidents speech? Well whatever the US does, the UK will inevitably follow, like the good little lap dog we are.

    • Bob, I didn’t expect the President to bounce over there and tell the Muslim crowd ANYTHING. I did not WANT him to go over there. I did not ask him to continue to apologize for the American people to the Muslim people. WE do not feel the need to apologize to ANYONE. Pandering to the crowd is what Obama does best, so that’s not a suprise that he did it this time.

      As far as the UK goes, feel free to mock your own Nation if you wish. It’s your Country after all. But this Nation does not want to be a Socialist Country. We are more than willing to leave that BS to Europe, where you have never known Freedom and Liberty to begin with. You don’t have to continue to be a “lapdog”. You may drop out at any time.

      I guess from reading comments like this from UK citizens, that you have forgotten the attacks in England much like many have forgotten 9/11 here. Good luck to you being an appeaser and apologist.

      • Oh please do tell what the solution is to the Middle East crisis Esom? Invade more countries? Start some proxy wars again? Should we bomb Iran now? Alienate even more allies?

        The problem with people like you is you see your country as 100% flawless that has never made a mistake, please, please, please do some research into some of the crap the US and the UK have been involved with in the middle ease and around the world. At least I am able to see my country as imperfect and fully acknowledge that the UK has done some extremely reprehensible things in its history both ancient and recent, Those Who Do Not Learn From History Are DOOMED To Repeat It.

        • Bob: I know this is a popular statement: “Start some proxy wars again? ” as I see it a lot. But I am curious.

          Which war or wars are considered proxy wars?

          What was each war a proxy for?

          As for that stain on Britain, no worries. It will be gone in a few years.

          Looking forward to your thoughts on this.
          JAC

          • Just type Proxy War into google and there is a wealth of information out there on the subject.
            My personal favourite is the US involvement with the Taliban, arms and CIA training were given to them to fight the soviets. I dont think it was a particularly good idea to arm and train those fellas up looking in hindsight.

            • JayDickB says:

              Hindsight is always better.

            • I didn’t ask what Google thinks, I asked your opinion.

              Please enlighten.

              • Well there cannot ever be a pure proxy war due to the fighting parties original interests. Lets see an example would be Vietnam, the Soviets provided arms to the Vietcong to fight against you. They did not have troops on the ground but they provided means for the Vietcong to defeat you. They essentially used someone else to fight you.

                Again with Afganistan, you provided arms to those groups fighting the Soviets, you did not have troops on the ground but you provided a way for the Afghans to defeat the Soviets.

                There are many examples during the cold war, go have a look.

              • Bama dad says:

                Bob said:
                “They did not have troops on the ground but they provided means for the Vietcong to defeat you. They essentially used someone else to fight you.”

                Actually the Viet Cong were decimated in the Tet offensive and did not defeat us. We lost because we let politicians and not the military dictate the prosecution of the war. Because we let politician dictate war strategy the war went on for so long we let public opinion beat us.

              • I agree so far. But now how do those examples relate to your comment regarding Iraq or the current situation in Afghanastan?

                By the way, I don’t have to go have a look at the cold war, I lived through and in the middle of it.

                JAC

              • Esom suggested there be no diplomacy in the middle ease so I asked him what other alternatives there were, I highlighted some possible options proxy war was one of them. I wanted to know what would be the best course of action.

        • See my Country as imperfect? Hell yes, it’s imperfect! And my solution is to pull all the soldiers out of the Middle East and let them kill each other off. All I am concerned with is MY Country, NOT anyone else’s.

          My problem with Obama going over and apologizing for us, is that “We the People” did not ask him to go over there to begin with. Certainly not to kiss up to the Muslim world and apologize for what Their terrorists have done, not only to us, but to their own damn people.

          I don’t give a rats ass about the Muslim World. If they leave us alone, I am perfectly willing to leave them alone. You said that the problem with people like me. Let me tell you. You don’t know anything about me. I am unhappy with what my Government has been doing for a Long, long time now.

          What I am telling you is that I and most of the American public, have had no say in what the Government has or is doing. Would you say that since Tony Blair went to the Middle East with us, that YOU are also responsible? After all, you are a UK citizen are you not?

          As far as this citizen is concerned Obama should do a little less asskissing to the world, and a little more fixing his own Nation’s economic and Domestic problems.

          • Oh I quite agree we should get our asses out of the middle east for good, I am sure they would appreciate that as well.
            Problem is it aint going to happen while there is so much of that black stuff in the ground.

            While our insatiable appetite for oil continues to grow we have got to do something to try and stabalize the region, what we have been doing so far has not been helping matters. If patting a few nations leaders on the head and saying the occasional “our bad” saves one soldiers life than I am all for it.

            With the whole if they leave us alone we will leave them alone is that we just cant help prodding and poking in that region. I found the terrorist attacks made on the US and UK disgusting but when I delved into the history of our involvment with the middle east, again altough I find the acts abhorant I can see we were not exactly faultless.

            Yep I voted for Blair and he took us to a unjustified war built on lies, I have to have that on my conscience, I am now doing what I can to protest the war.

            I really do wish we could just stop our involvment with the middle east but it just isnt going to happen until someone figures out how to get rid of our dependance on oil. I pray it will be within my lifetime.

            • Your conclusion is false. In fact the oil executives in testimony to Congress stated that the primary barrier to affordable oil from the middle east was the constant meddling of the western govts.

              So you see our dependence on a resource they have and we want only requires us paying for it. Nothing else. So then one must ask, what is the reason we feel compelled to get mixed up in all this.

              I believe that is where history comes in. The inertia of past decisions is often very hard to break.

              • Oil is a finite resource my friend all we are doing is making sure we have enough influence in the region to make sure it is heading in our direction when the wells start to dry.

              • It only takes money Bob.

                So what is the real reason we are involved?

              • I dont think it is only going to take money I am afraid,when the oil is running out who are you going to give the money to, the man giving you $100 or the man with a gun to your head.

                I could be wrong I am curious what your thoughts are regarding our continued involvment with the middle east?

              • Oh and I am curious why you think we are still involved?

                If money buys the oil, why are the UK and US there?

              • I think we need to get them set up, that is those we have disrupted and come home.

                Then we need to treat them as traders and soveriegn nations.

                Treat them as we want to be treated.

                And if one of them actually attacks us, destroy them.

                But that could just be the coffee talking.

            • Stop ignoring the cultural aspects of 9/11. Osama has said that his reasoning included the fact that our western culture has polluted Islam and threatens it.

              I almost agree with him. I think that after the Afghan invasion, Larry Flint (Hustler magazine) sent “journalists” over to record the responses of young Afghans when shown his pornography. Nice intro to “freedom” and “democracy” eh?

              Osama’s own Egyptian Cleric pointed out that the West, while once Christian has now become Pagan. Can’t say I disagree with him there either.

              So, the big question is, were the 9/11 and follow up attacks because of perceived political injustice (remember this is a culture that takes a long view and is just as pissed off today about the Crusades as they were a thousand years ago) or because of our moral failings. Interesting question?

          • Danak13 says:

            ESOM….here…have a Dr. Pepper…it will settle you down. I had to do it. Did not change my mind about anything but it did settle me down.

            🙂

            • Eh, I don’ need no stinkin’ Dr. Pepper! 😀

              Really, I’m not ill at ol’ Bob-o. I just don’t agree that going over to Egypt or any other Country and kissing their backsides with a bunch of flowery speeches about what a bad Country we’ve been, does anything but make us look, in Slim Pickens words, like a bunch of Kansas City Faggets. (Blazing Saddles)

              I do agree we should pull totally out of the Middle East as soon as possible though. We don’t have to help them kill each other. They do a fine job of that without outside help.

              • amazed1 says:

                Correct Esom…they have been killing each other for thousands of years and they will continue. Their oil….either buy it or trade for it….they can’t drink it and without our other countries money or trade they will die out on their own.

        • Solution to Middle east crisis.

          1. Drill for oil anywhere it can be found.

          2. Do not buy middle eastern oil, even if it means rationing here. This is a national security crisis.

          3. Ignore the bastards.

          4. Impose the rule, “You are free to kill anyone you want, anytime you want for any reason you want within your own borders”. Step over those borders and we will eliminate you. This is the “Roman Way” or just plain tough love.

        • Bama dad says:

          Bob said:

          “Those Who Do Not Learn From History Are DOOMED To Repeat It.”

          I gather from your post you advocate the “Neville Chamberlain” approach when dealing with people that try to do you harm. 😈

          • Yes Chamberlain was an idiot but please do not compare Nazi Germany to some of the countries in the middle east. Germany had a far better army and air force at the time and when we finally met them we ran back to Britain after having our asses firmly kicked, have a read at what happened at Dunkirk.

            As far as I see now the US by itself could easily wipe out any of the countries that they percieve as a threat in the middle east. Chamberlain was just hoping and praying that Hitler would not take things further.

            • Chamberlain was so afraid that Hitler would take things further that he gave up the Chekoslavakians to him without even asking them. His strategy was appeasement. The same strategy Obama is using now with the whole world.

              It did not work then and will not work now. Giving Maniacs what they want only gives them the courage to demand more.

              The Muslim world wants us and the rest of the West, including Israel, gone. As in wiped out gone. Israel because of who they are and us because we are not Muslim.

              • If we would have gone up against Hitlers army then they would have kicked our asses which they later did in France anyway. When you are going against a country who has a better army in both training and equipment all you can do is hope appeasment works and they dont take any more countries.
                Why dont you think any countries did anything about the pretty much universally condemned invasion of Iraq? Its because the US could destroy any country it went up against. All the international community could do was hope you didnt go after any other countries.

                Again I would love to hear some other solutions to the middle east problem, you cant use pull out all troops again though because that solution (although it is the one I wish for) just aint gonna happen.

              • Bama dad says:

                See 15 below

              • If France and Britain had stood up to Hitler at that time Bob, he would have backed down.

                His own people verified that long ago. Neither he, nor his Army was ready to face them at that time. All Chamberlain did was give Germany’sMilitary time to get ready. He successfully pulled off a colossal bluff, banking on France’s and Britain’sreluctance to have another war. When he invaded Poland later, then he was ready to kick some ass and did so.

                He could have been stopped at any time before then.

    • Bob, There have been far more innocent people killed in Iraq by Iraqis then both our countries combined. There will always be civilian casualties in war, it is an unfortunate part of war, but will always happen. I don’t believe anyone wants war, and most civil people will do everything possible to avoid it. There will always be the strong and the weak. There are two types of strong, the bully and the savior, The bully will always pray on the weak, and the savior will always battle the bully to right things. Mistakes will be made by all. Sadly, some governments don’t quite understand this because their philosophies are currupted, and that’s why there are bullies. Saddam Hussain was a bully. The history books of the future will say this, and say who the saviors were.

      PEACE to my UK friend!

      G!

      • We can try and make ourselves to look like the saviours but just try and think from an Iraqis civilian viewpoint. Just imagine coming home one day and finding a crater where your home was. A soldier walks up and says “Oooops sorry about that we meant to target a house down the street, we found parts of your family if you want them?” I dont think you would care if they proclaimed themselves as saviours or not.

        As regards Saddam, oh an evil tyrant to be sure but he kept the people in check. In Iraq you have two different religious sects that dont really get on, Saddam used force and torture to keep control but there was order. We have come in and witnessed ethnic cleansing of Baghdad from one sect to the other. As soon as we leave all hell is going to break loose and there will be a civil war, it is not going to be pretty. I imagine what will happen next is an Islamic government set up and we will have another Taliban on our hands who are neither friends to the US or the UK.

        Also what is not good is the hidden photos that Obama decided not to release after he saw them. From reports they depicted US soldiers raping women and in one of the photos sodomizing a teenage boy. I dont think that is going to fly so well with the Iraqis, what are they going to think the difference is between us and Saddam?

        Anyways I want nothing but peace, I wish we lived in a tolerant world, hopefully one day we can live in peace.

        • Congratulations!!!

          You have just lost your credibility with me. First you don’t give me chapter and verse on “Heathen Muslims” and choose to ignore the question, now we have mystery pictures from unnamed sources on US rapes and worse. If they existed, they would be leaked. Get real!

          • Hey sorry I dont have the websites I saw from 2003, I dont keep a list of old websites that I could use in future arguments.

            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/5413633/Telegraph-report-over-Abu-Ghraib-abuse-photos-confirmed.html

            Have fun.

            • The photos we have seen so far were privately taken as were the alleged ones. This country is incapable of keeping a secret. Had they existed, they would have been leaked. If they ever are, I will apologize. At the time of the incidents, there were “fake” photos published of orgies which were ultimately shown to be fakes after the damage was done.

              What say you US, Danak 13 and SFC Dick? Any rumors out there about photo content?

              Never forget the”Pentagon Papers”. The US Gov’t couldn’t even keep that covered up. And let’s not forget how much the NY Times would probably be willing to pay for copies of those pictures. After all, I believe they ran 47 front page stories on Abu Grahib in 55 days.

              • My logic is that releasing more photos similar to the ones already released from Abu Gharib it would not be too bad right? If they dont want to release them due to endangering US soldiers lives then they must be worse than those originally shown. The news story backs up my thinking, hey I may be wrong but my government has told some whoppers in the past and tried to cover things up, I dont even want to think how much they have actually been able to cover up.

              • Danak13 says:

                There are always rumors out there. Having been there, but not that particular prison, I did not see the atrocities that have been mentioned nor have I seen pictures of anything other than what you have seen.

                We have our stupid people and we have our idiots. If stuff like this happened, I would personally pull the trigger on the offenders. This is not condoned anywhere in the military and should not be made public. There is no reason to. The military is quite brutal in handling our own misfits and we will do so.

        • “Saddam used force and torture to keep control, BUT THERE WAS ORDER.”

          “Also what is not good is the hidden photos that Obama decided not to release after he saw them”

          Your use of these two statements is contradictory. Either torture is OK, or it is not.

          You seem to have two sets of values here.

          G!

          • Torture is inexcusable in all circumstances I am just trying to think like a Iraqi here, you have an evil tyrant who tortures to control the people but there is order and the streets are safe.
            Then you have our invasion where the country is thrown into disorder, many thousands are killed and then photos get released from Abu Gharib depicting torture.
            As an Iraqi what would you think?

            • I would think that things are much better for me. Since every soldier I’ve spoken with tells me that their lives are much, much better, and they no longer live in fear of being taken away and killed at any given moment. I would also think that if the prisoners were tortured, as maybe my brother or father were tortured and killed by SH, that payback is a bitch! That’s how I would feel as an Iraqi, based on firsthand accounts by living witnesses.

              Bob, I was there to see what the Iraqi’s did in Kuwait. I am in contact with several friends who are in Iraq today, maybe you should get some more accurate information about what is really happening, because you will NEVER get it from the media!

              G!

            • There seems to be this international misunderstanding that Iraq is a country of one culture and people. It is not. There were different reactions to all the things you mention Bob. Some saw it as opportunity, others as not so much.

              Apparently there was a lot more support in the beginning than the media or oppostition politicians would talk about. It was actually our inability to deal with escalating internal violence and failure of the economic structure that got so many against us.

              All is not as simple as it appears or as our media want to make it out in that part of the world.

              JAC

              • Okay I agree it is not cut and dry. There are many people happy Saddam was strung up also there are many who will resent us for taking him out of power. Iraq is a complicated country that I personally think we should have had no involvment with.

            • Alan F. says:

              “I am just trying to think like a Iraqi here” is an impossibility. Your experiences taint any attempt at thinking like anyone but yourself.

          • I love the way Saddam kept “order” with the Kurds. I must say that biological agent he used on them ordered their dead bodies along the ground pretty well.

            • You mean the chemical weapons that were able to be made from substances such as Thiodiglycol that the US provided?

              Again Saddam was a tyrant, but we didnt have that much of a problem with him when he was fighting Iran.

              • So it’s the United States fault that he used this on his own people? I don’t give a crap WHERE it came from.

                The point is that Saddam was a sadistic, murdering sonofabitch to his own people.

                I don’t argue the fact that some abuse happened or that innocent people lost their lives. It is war. WAR is not nice. Innocent folks die in a war. Bad things are done by stupid people in a war.

                Look, I too don’t think we should be there. Most especially using my tax dollars to rebuild the Country better than it was when we got there. But I don’t see Sheik Obama changing anything more than Czar Bush did. All I see is a whole lot of asskissing. At least Bush had more sense than that.

              • No its not the US fault he used it on the Kurds but you provided him the means to make chemical weapons so he could use them on Iran. Again the US and UK were very chummy with Saddam when we were selling weapons to him, geez I was friends with a guy who worked on the super cannon being made in Sheffield and he knew exactly what it was.

                Saddam was a terrible man but we didn’t have a problem with the atrocities over there when Saddam was doing things we liked.

              • Reply at 9 under my other one

        • I would like to know more about these photos? Do you have a link to some info about them??

  9. JayDickB says:

    Bob: “As far as the Muslim V Christianity thing we have both done some bad stuff in the past”

    So, both are morally equivalent now?

    When was the last time a mainstream Christian religion espoused killing non-Christians?

    • So we should argue who has the most extremists? I have read on some so called Christian sites around the time we invaded Iraq and Afganistan that it was a holy war against the heathen muslims.

      I grew up around muslims and I am friends with many of them and as a Christian non have wanted to kill me because of my beliefs.

      • That is the key Bob. “So Called” Christian sites. Real Christian sites would not do that regardless. A real Christian does not advocate violence on anyone for anything. If they do, then I submit that they are not in reality Christian, but are just pretending to be.

        We already know that not all Muslims are bad people. Extremism is NOT the property of one sole religion nor people.

        • You are right that the Government had no problem with Saddam until he turned against The US. But “WE” didn’t do it.

          I think you can see from this blog and others Bob, that we are not too happy with Obama or even with the entire US Government. Some haven’t been happy longer than others but generally we see the destruction of our Country at hand.

          The present Administration is more concerned with the rest of the World than he is with the one he was elected President of. He was elected through that same smoozing that he does now in his speeches. His inexperience in governance shows more with each passing day.

          He is also proving to be a bigger liar and conniver than any President we have ever had and that’s saying a lot. His style of greasy talk and strongarm tactics rubs a lot of Americans the wrong way. At least the ones who have a brain and think for themselves anyway. That number grows with each passing day.

          He is leading us down the path of Socialism so fast we can hardly keep up with the changes. This Country is NOT Europe. WE here still remember what Liberty and Freedom are and we are not going to just sit idly by and watch that man and his Liberal dominated Congress destroy our Nation and our Economy while he plays New World Messiah.

          That’s not to say it won’t happen. Just that we have plans in case it does or we can’t stop it.

          If this view of the rest of the world and the muslims is too harsh, all I can say is too bad. I don’t live in the rest of the world and I’m not a muslim. I am a Baptist Country boy from Georgia and that and my Country is all that concerns me. The rest of the world can go straight to hell.

      • Bama dad says:

        Typical dodge, just ignore the question.
        😮

      • Let me get this straight, somebody actually called them “Heathen Muslims”? That requires chapter and verse my friend.

        That’s also more or less out of the British book circa Gordon and the Mahdi. Kind of Kiplingesque, don’t you think? Certainly not TE Lawrence.

        As a Catholic I have also heard, and read, some incredibly uncomplimentary things about me and my religion from other Christian denominations.

        It certainly does seem that you are into moral equivalency. I’ve never bought any of that. You have to go to the historical record and see who did what to whom first. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I seem to remember a time when all of North Africa and the Middle East was Christian. The change did not happen peacefully. What was a response and what was an aggression? Sort of like those who condemn the US for use of the A-bomb without mentioning Nanking, Pearl Harbor, Bataan death march and a few thousand other Japanese atrocities. Or, the firebombings of Dresden and other cities in Germany without mentioning thirty million or so dead Russians, Poles, Jews, Gypsies, and the unrestricted bombings of Warsaw, Rotterdam, Coventry , London and a few other places…

        Yes, and I know many Muslims also whom I have worked with and while they do not seem to want to kill me, when engaged in debate over the current problems all seem to have a wait and see attitude. This I do not appreciate. Wrong is wrong and, as I have condemned the stupidity of the Bush administration, I would like to see them condemn their radical coreligionists. The analogies I see from our history are the outstanding patriotism displayed by German, Italian and Japanese Americans during WW 2. The Japanese had every right to sit that one out because of our treatment of them but they did not. Should I not ask the same of Muslims? Or have times really changed so much that they see themselves as outside citizens of another place currently occupying space here? Ask your friends that. It would be interesting to hear their answers.

      • JayDickB says:

        The point I was trying to make is that what happened 500 years ago may not be as relevant to this debate as what happened 10 years ago or yesterday or this morning.

        • For a culture that still considers Spain, Sicily and Greece to be part of their greater Caliphate, who still flippantly refers to the Crusades as if they happened yesterday, it means absolutely, positively NOTHING. It’s the old totalitarian, “what’s mine is mine, what’s yours is subject to negotiation. What used to be mine, regardless of how I got it is still mine.”

          Try this trick, go to an observant Muslim, not a secular one and ask if they can unequivocally deny slavery. After several hours of BS they cannot. See, it was written down in the Holy book and in that book, nothing changes…ever.

          FYI, back in the time of David Lean’s “Lawrence of Arabia”, I got interested in Arabia and Arabic culture. Read Lawrence’s “Seven Pillars of Wisdom”. It is an excellent place to start studying their culture and caprices.

        • Oh, and I still want to know who called them “Heathen Muslims”?

  10. USW, I agree with your comments on the speech almost wholeheartedly. The only difference I have, is that I thought he sort of tossed Israel under the bus.

    First saying that we would remain Israels staunch ally and then telling the muslim crowd how wrong Israel is and stating what they MUST do. He has no more right to tell Israel what they can or cannot do than he does Iran or North Korea. Israel has survived since 1948 right square in the middle of all their enemies. I think I kind of understand their self-protection mentality. I also think they have shown great restraint in NOT kicking Arab ass more than they have.

    I also noticed, like a commentator for Fox did, that be did not mention Anwar Sadat in his speech. I find that a trifle odd considering Sadat was responsible for the biggest peace treaty EVER with Irael. The treaty that has kept the peace between Egypt and Israel since the late 70’s. I would have thought that if he wants peace in the Middle East, he would have at least mentioned the greatest peace treaty ever negotiated there in the Country where one of the leaders was from and one of the Nations in it.

    • Danak13 says:

      you could fill a volume of what he did not say…and he did not challenge the Muslim to change.

    • USWeapon says:

      Esom and Danak,

      A couple of thoughts. I do think that he challenged Muslims to change. He was not forceful. And to an extent that was wise. There is some finesse that needs to be applied. And I thought he applied the right amount of finesse in discussing some of the shortcomings of muslim attitudes and actions towards the US.

      I do think that in some respects he threw Israel under a fiat, not quite a bus. Israel has some issues of her own, and that should be recognized. Failure of the US to admit to Israel’s flaws is one of the things that causes great issue to be taken with us in that region. To be fair he had as much to say about Palestinians and others in regard to Israel. He challenged them to recognize Israel and work towards peace. I cut out quite a bit of what he said about the two sides of this debate from the speech. I suggest that before we judge too harshly on this particular topic, make sure you read that entire section in the link I provided.

  11. Danak13 says:

    Oh wow….this should be one hell of a subject for about 1,000 years.

    This will be my real first attempt on your blog, USW, to give more than my opinion and back it up the best that I can. If it is not what you want, please let me know. I will don my flak jacket and take the heat and criticism, which is surely to follow. Please remember that I have fought with and against, lived with, had dinner with, and have lived with Muslims for extended periods of time, so I have some relative experience. So….heeerrrreeee goes.

    “Violent extremists have exploited these tensions in a small but potent minority of Muslims. The attacks of September 11, 2001 and the continued efforts of these extremists to engage in violence against civilians has led some in my country to view Islam as inevitably hostile not only to America and Western countries, but also to human rights. All this has bred more fear and more mistrust. So long as our relationship is defined by our differences, we will empower those who sow hatred rather than peace, those who promote conflict rather than the cooperation that can help all of our people achieve justice and prosperity. And this cycle of suspicion and discord must end.”

    I was off yesterday, June 4 and personally went by three different mosque’s. The first was in Fort Worth, number two in Arlington, and number three in Dallas. The mosque’s in Fort Worth and Dallas would not let me in nor talk to me. The mosque in Arlington was very open to talk and actually let me in the front door but only to a hallway. I was not allowed anywhere else because I was not Muslim and, therefore, not holy. (Their statement, not mine). The cleric there flat looked me in the eye and told me that B.O. was the emissary of God and that this is the start of the Muslim Revolution in the United States (his words not mine). He, the cleric, also told me that even moderate and “peaceful” Muslims believe in totality that Islam is the only true religion and it is their destiny to once again be the “light if the world.” (His words not mine). He also said that while he did not advocate violence, it was sometimes necessary to use it to achieve a common purpose. (His words, not mine). NOW, SOMEONE TELL ME THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MODERATE AND PEACEFUL MUSLIM. So, my interpretation of this is that everything is on the table to achieve total Islam. They may not like some of the violence but understand and are even tolerant of it. I asked the following specific question: Would you, as a cleric, denounce the extreme violence of the Taliban and Hamas and other factions, intended to suppress a more central movement in the Islamic faith? His answer: As a cleric, and a leader of one of God’s mosques, I cannot denounce what is just.

    My interpretation: Islam is hostile.

    “As a student of history, I also know civilization’s debt to Islam. It was Islam — at places like Al-Azhar — that carried the light of learning through so many centuries, paving the way for Europe’s Renaissance and Enlightenment. It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra; our magnetic compass and tools of navigation; our mastery of pens and printing; our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed. Islamic culture has given us majestic arches and soaring spires; timeless poetry and cherished music; elegant calligraphy and places of peaceful contemplation. And throughout history, Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality.”

    What a crock of well stacked and perfectly formed bull shit !!! I wish he would study his history…especially the history of the Persian Empire. Persia once ruled the world, practically, at the point of the sword. All societies, no matter how large or how small have contributed many things. Islam does NOT have the front seat here. SOMEONE PLEASE SHOW ME THE RELIGIOUS TOLERANCE AND RACIAL EQUALITY?? Women are still second and third class citizens…even in the United States. And, according to the cleric I talked to yesterday…..where is the religious tolerance.? It simply does not exist from what I have seen and learned.

    “So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed. That experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn’t. And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.”
    USW… you are correct in your assessment. I did not vote for this man but he is my President now. I see it as no part of his job to fight against the negative stereotypes of Islam. He is MY PRESIDENT….not the world and certainly not that of Islam……that is…unless he is one.

    “But my personal story is not so unique. The dream of opportunity for all people has not come true for everyone in America, but its promise exists for all who come to our shores — and that includes nearly 7 million American Muslims in our country today who, by the way, enjoy incomes and educational levels that are higher than the American average.”

    The Muslim proportion of the population continues to grow, from .3 percent in 1990 to .5 percent in 2001 to .6 percent in 2008: This number was found here: American Religious Identification Survey.
    They only questioned adults. The adult American population is 228 million. So, let me do the math here…..228,000,000 x .6% = 1,440,000. I guess by his math 1 is almost 1,000. I take GREAT exception to the fact that the average income and educational level is higher than the American Average. Investigations shows, that the “weighted average” is true because it takes in ALL AGES while the Muslim figures only start at age 27. Comparing “apples to apples” , his statement is not true at all. I also take great excepting to the fact that the appearance is that he is touting the Muslim sect as greater than that of the US. Not something an American President should do.

    “Moreover, freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one’s religion (unless you are a christian). That is why there is a mosque in every state in our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That’s why the United States government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab and to punish those who would deny it.”

    The pile is getting deeper and deeper here. Like USW has said, where is the protection of the Christian faith? The same law that allows a female to wear the hijab should allow the adornment of the crucifix and other religious ornaments. Sadly, it is not so.

    “When innocents in Bosnia and Darfur are slaughtered, that is a stain on our collective conscience”

    My conscience is quite clear. Let other countries defend their own. If it is wrong to go to Iraq…it is wrong to go to Afghanistan or Pakistan.

    From USW: Now this is a statement that I really liked hearing him say. Because I believe in the absolute sovereignty of other nations, we hold no right to force our belief about what their government should be on them. They are free to do whatever they want. Period.

    Agreed.

    That does not lessen my commitment, however, to governments that reflect the will of the people. Each nation gives life to this principle in its own way, grounded in the traditions of its own people. America does not presume to know what is best for everyone, just as we would not presume to pick the outcome of a peaceful election. But I do have an unyielding belief that all people yearn for certain things: the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed; confidence in the rule of law and the equal administration of justice; government that is transparent and doesn’t steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose. These are not just American ideas; they are human rights. And that is why we will support them everywhere.
    But wait a minute. You just said “No system of government can or should be imposed by one nation by any other” and you follow that up with essentially, “so long as the form of government that they choose on their own is one that we Americans agree with.” This sir, is completely contradictory. You either recognize that we cannot have a say in how other countries choose to live, or you don’t. There is no middle ground.

    Again…right on.

    “Meanwhile, the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life (bullshit), and in countries around the world.”

    SOMEONE has to prove this one to me. I do not see it anymore….anywhere. There may be an isolated incident, but it is not normal or average. You will also have to prove to me that it is different than that of males. Same for minorities…but that is another topic.

    In closing, USW, I will have to agree with you. This was nothing more than a kiss ass speech and I am actually offended that I have a President apologizing to the world and I am equally offended at anyone who thinks we have to do so. We have our problems and we have our weaknesses but to demonstrate them and send this signal to our enemies ( and despite what the far left believes, you cannot always talk your way out) we have enemies for life. It is their religion that says so and as their religion goes…so do they.

    D13 (pissed)

    • Danak13 says:

      Ok, I am better now. Had my Dr. Pepper.

      • Outstanding! You went to three different mosque’s? I didn’t know we were supposed to do outside research, you make me feel like a slacker.

        This does show why we should be careful being drawn into conflict with N. Korea, as “this administration will be tested”. There was no guess on how many would be testing us.

        • Danak13 says:

          Well, I must confess that as a military person, my attitude and knowledge was restricted to what was read and my experiences in Kuwait/Iraq and Afghanistan. I also wanted to know what “American Muslims” thought without reading opinion. In addition, since I have come to this site, there are several who post on here that are quite knowledgeable and well read and experienced….so, I wanted to back up my sources and actually felt challenged to find out some things first hand. That is what I found in one short day.

          What I did not say was that while talking with the cleric, I noticed the women that were coming and going. They would drive up in their car with out covering their face but did so immediately upon arriving. Why the double standard if there is tolerance?

          • Danak13 says:

            Now, in hindsight, I wish I had asked that particular question at that time. Probably would have been beheaded tho.

    • JayDickB says:

      EXCELLENT!

    • Birdman says:

      I agree with you that Islam is hostile. You are either one of them or you are an enemy. It is not just a religion but a way of life and if you are not a muslim then you are an infidel. The muslims are not tolerant and never will be. I say pull all troops out of the middle east and if Iran uses Nuclear weapons against us or Israel then turn Iran into a sheet of glass with our Nuclear weapons.

      Obama’s ass kissing speech will not change anything. All we really want from the middle east is oil. If they think they can raise the price to $200 a barrel then do it. I don’t care what they do in that part of the world to their own people and they are not our friends and never will be.

    • Bama dad says:

      Good job!!!!!!
      😆

    • Well said and 100% agreement from me.

    • OK Danak, this is just to creepy.

      The following is a comment I was going to make to JayDick earlier but held off to build a better case, so I deleted and saved.

      “We have seen the unveiling of the New World Messiah. This is some serious and scary stuff. The mosaic picture with the smile and distant gaze. Same as the photos used here. His speech was not primarily one of a President of the US but as the annoited leader of the world, or wants to be. This is trully starting to give me the creeps.”

      I hold off and 30 minutes later you post this:

      “The cleric there flat looked me in the eye and told me that B.O. was the emissary of God and that this is the start of the Muslim Revolution in the United States (his words not mine).”

      Ladies and Gentlemen, we are seeing the impact of a cult of peronality, potentially at a global scale.

      As I said, this is giving me the creeps.

      And by the way, your post was excellent and is just what we all are looking for. Even if we disagree it is well developed and presented. I hope you do more.

      JAC

      • Danak13 says:

        Wow…thank you JAC

      • Ya know, I asked my Pappy if he thought Obama was the Anti-Christ. He told me that, NO he wasn’t. He then proceded to give me reasons that my old wore out brain can’t remember, why he wasn’t.

        The longer he is in Office; the more he says and does; and the more he is compared to the new messiah not only by the US, but the entire frickin’ World, the more I am starting to wonder if Pappy ain’t wrong.

    • chiefopiner says:

      Well, there’s nothing I can add to something so excellently said already.

    • Danak, Nice research and thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks for the insight…or should I say the confirmation.

    • Alan F. says:

      And here I thought this statement “But my personal story is not so unique. The dream of opportunity for all people has not come true for everyone in America, but its promise exists for all who come to our shores — and that includes nearly 7 million American Muslims in our country today who, by the way, enjoy incomes and educational levels that are higher than the American average.” was admitting “affirmative action is no longer necessary”.

      Good job on this by the way.

    • amazed1 says:

      D13
      Very Very good job……re-read Obama speech down to the education part……he will be bringing more Muslims to the US as exchange students….Nice.

    • >>enjoy incomes and educational levels that are higher than the American average.”

      Missed this the 1st couple of times, but this statement is just another shot at Israel, because I think if one were to ‘group’ americans then Jews probably are number one, and since the US holds the black man down so much the average is low etc etc ..

    • Mike M. Houston Texas says:

      WOW. Well done. I cannot disagree with any of your points. Understanding the prime tenet of their religion “Islam is the only way” allows you to draw conclusions about the longest term goal of that religion. While some ways may be subtle (mosques in all countries) and some overt (radicals) they all share the same goal. While I was not there for the discussion I believe that what the cleric said to be true. They will never denounce the radicals because they have the same goal in mind. In their view there is no need to denounce or deal with the radicals until the ultimate goal has been met. This is the earth and all its population totally devoted to their faith. Only then will the radicals and non radicals deal with each other to decided a final direction in dealing with each other.

      I guess I am an optimist though. There will be a time when the muslim community pushes to far and too hard and there will be a very hard course correction by America. There will be a point in time that the population is pushed into making the hard choices at very local levels. This time while very difficult will end the way it should.

  12. Morning all,

    I think peter nailed it on post #2. Esom, great point on Sadat.

    Bob, no one here thinks ” your country as 100% flawless that has never made a mistake”. Do a little research yourself on past articles before telling a military veteran to do so.

    Was Iraq a mistake? Most rulers in the middle east are happy he’s gone. How many wars did Sadam start? How many UN sanctions did they violate?

    As for the rest of the middle east, those that respect women’s rights seem to be more reasonable to deal with, and less inclined to promote religious war.
    Compare that to Iran, the worlds largest sponsor of terrorism. And they are intent on acquiring nuclear weapons, which if they don’t use directly, would likely be given to Hamas( name meaning “Islamic Resistance Movement). Their leadership has shown a willingness in the past to “negociate” with no intention
    of compromise. They have called for the eradication of Israel, and the US the great Satan. Those words are worth believing. The question is how we will answer.

    • So do you think we should do pre-emptive strikes against Iran and have another ground offensive?

      • Most emphaticaly NO! Iran is a sovereign Nation. We do not have the right to tell them that they cannot have nukes. We don’t have the right to tell ANY Nation what they can or cannot do.

        But we do have the right to keep them off of other sovereign Nations. Especially ours.

        When Iran threatens others, they set themselves up for a big ass whipping. But we should not apply it unless they actually look like they intend to do so. We should not wait until they shoot a nuke at somebody and then use harsh language to verbally slap their wrist and say “Bad Boy”!

        • Well we have tried the “Iran you are a very naughty boy” route for the past few years and its not getting us anywhere the only options are to try and soften them up a bit through diplomacy or military strikes.

          • We can try diplomacy but I can tell you now it’s not going to work. Iran does not want to talk. Iran wants to demand. Just as N. Korea does. That is a non starter from my house. If we were diplomatic but firm, then OK. But we won’t do that. We will do everything including bending over and paying them off. Especially if the UN or Obama has anything to do with it.

            Military strikes are not an option either. That would quickly escalate out of control. It might even kick off WW3.

            To me, our only option is to leave them alone, but let them know in no uncertain terms that if anyone is attacked with nukes by them we will turn their Country into a Radioactive Glass Parking Lot. AND MEAN IT AND LEAVE NO DOUBT THAT WE DO.

  13. Obama: “And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.”

    US Weapon: “it simply isn’t in the job description”

    He didn’t say it was part of his job description, but part of what he considers his responsibility as president. Every president picks/choices/describes what things will be the focus of his terms.

    Obama: “and that includes nearly 7 million American Muslims in our country today who, by the way, enjoy incomes and educational levels that are higher than the American average.”

    US Weapon: “What??? Higher than the American average. Where is Chris Devine to put Obama in his place. This is not a land of opportunity. If you aren’t rich and white, you need government to take care of you!! There is no way that 7 million muslims could come to our country and prosper. If that were true, then the whole argument that government is needed to make this happen becomes flawed. Surely Obama is either lying or mistaken.”

    It is your assumption that Obama and the Democrats think government is needed to take care of people. If you find that this assumption is a contradiction, than maybe you need to correct your assumptions. 😉

    Obama: “That’s why the United States government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab and to punish those who would deny it.”

    US Weapon: “I would like the United States government to go to court to protect those same rights for christians in the United States. The right to carry a bible to school. The right to practice religion in the way they see fit. The right to have Santa Clause in the Christmas parade.”

    WTF? Santa Clause in the Christmas parade? Are you arguing for Christianity or secularism? Do we need Rudolph added to the manger scene? I’m confused on this one…

    Obama: “Unlike Afghanistan, Iraq was a war of choice that provoked strong differences”

    US Weapon: “A war of choice. So now we are using campaign rhetoric on the global campaign trail again are we. Nice that your opinion is that the warmongering Bush was on a personal vendetta. Horrible that you, as the leading spokesman for the entire country, just told the entire Arab world that we attacked Iraq on a whim with no reason at all.”

    In his first National Security briefing in January 2001, less than 1 week after taking office, 6 months before 9/11, President Bush was looking for options to remove Saddam Hussein from power. 9/11 just gave him an excuse.

    Obama: “So let me be clear: No system of government can or should be imposed by one nation by any other.”

    US Weapon: “Now this is a statement that I really liked hearing him say. Because I believe in the absolute sovereignty of other nations, we hold no right to force our belief about what their government should be on them. They are free to do whatever they want. Period.”

    So far so good 🙂

    Obama: “But I do have an unyielding belief that all people yearn for certain things: the ability to speak your mind and have a say in how you are governed; confidence in the rule of law and the equal administration of justice; government that is transparent and doesn’t steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose. These are not just American ideas; they are human rights. And that is why we will support them everywhere.”

    US Weapon: “But wait a minute. You just said “No system of government can or should be imposed by one nation by any other” and you follow that up with essentially, “so long as the form of government that they choose on their own is one that we Americans agree with.” This sir, is completely contradictory. You either recognize that we cannot have a say in how other countries choose to live, or you don’t. There is no middle ground.”

    You’re twisting words for your benefit. Here’s my paraphrase of what Obama said: “others can choose whatever they want. We will not IMPOSE our type of government on anyone. But we will support those we agree with.”

    No contradiction – logical and well reasoned.

    AUDIENCE MEMBER: Barack Obama, we love you! (Are you kidding me. Was this guy a plant?)

    At first I thought you meant “house plant”, but I think you meant “planned ahead of time”? Although I imagine you’ll take either definition!!! 🙂

    Obama: “the struggle for women’s equality continues in many aspects of American life”

    US Weapon: “not only dishonest, it is a slap in the face of America. I would expect a statement like this from a foreign leader trying to tear America down. But from our own President. It was a horrible thing to say.”

    I think you’re mincing words. Put the emphasis on “continues” instead of “many”, and then the statement acknowledges that we’ve made great progress, and that process continues.

    Overall, I thought it was a good speech (surprise!!). I think Obama mad a lot of good points and addressed a lot of issues that need to be brought out into the open.

    • “Obama made” not “Obama mad”…geez, was that a “Freidan Slip”??????? 🙂

    • Todd, as stated before, there were some good points that our President brought out, I believe that US pointed that out as well. The problem is when he leaves out much of the good the US has done that really bothers me. Also…

      “government that is transparent and doesn’t steal from the people; the freedom to live as you choose.”

      What the heck do you call indebting this nation to unheard of levels…and what the heck is so transparent about his government? How many Congressional members signed on to his stimulus package without even reading it? What about the earmarks in it that he promised would end during his campaign? Doesn’t steal from the people? Let’s spread the wealth around…sound familiar? Take a look at your paycheck, and imagine all of the new stealing yet to come…cap and trade, VAT, tax on soft drinks and alcohol, taxing your healthcare…etc. I am sure there are more, but these are just the few I can think of off the top of my head. As far as freedom to live as I choose, his policies have and will severely limit that as well.

      • Terry,

        “government that is transparent”
        I think they’re working on transparency, but it’s not a switch that can just be turned on.

        “doesn’t steal from the people”
        I assume you’re referring to taxes. I don’t agree with calling it “stealing” when an elected government collects taxes.

        “the freedom to live as you choose”
        I suppose there are many views on this, but I feel pretty free to live as I choose. Yes I have to follow local/county/state zoning laws, etc, but I see value to those when applied to everyone.

        “What the heck do you call indebting this nation to unheard of levels”
        Obama inherited a pretty big mess. He’s dealing with it in a way that I think is correct.
        I think McCain would be dealing with it in a similar fashion. He certainly would not be able to reduce the deficit compared to last year.

        “what the heck is so transparent about his government?”
        See above.

        “How many Congressional members signed on to his stimulus package without even reading it?”
        Probably many – do you have a number? That’s how the process “works”.

        “What about the earmarks in it that he promised would end during his campaign?”
        A stimulus bill is all earmarks. That’s pretty much the definition of a stimulus bill.

        “Doesn’t steal from the people?”
        Again, I don’t agree with calling it “stealing” when an elected government collects taxes.

        “Let’s spread the wealth around…sound familiar?”
        I agree with this statement, but not thru tax policy.

        “Take a look at your paycheck”
        Keeps going up…

        “Imagine all of the new stealing yet to come…cap and trade, VAT, tax on soft drinks and alcohol, taxing your healthcare…etc. I am sure there are more, but these are just the few I can think of off the top of my head.”

        Again, I don’t agree with calling it “stealing” when an elected government collects taxes.

        I consider taxes a necessary “evil” in a modern society. I don’t waste a lot of time complaining about them because it doesn’t accomplish anything. I prefer to spend my time working to earn money and playing to spend it (more of the latter hopefully!). Taxes just happen – kind of like death…

        “As far as freedom to live as I choose, his policies have and will severely limit that as well.”
        Could you explain this more?

        • chiefopiner says:

          So whenever the government (at any level) brings a new tax, or increases a tax, you’re okay with that?

          Tax whatever you want at whatever rate you want and no have no problem with that?

          • No, my answer was over-simplified. If you think your taxes are too high, either get involved during elections or contact your elected officials.

            Either of those have limited effectiveness and results, so I don’t worry about taxes too much…

  14. Please do your research people. Learn about Islam, learn about Al Quada and the Taliban. Learn about Iran, Iraq, and Palenstine as the news has begun to tell lies and they will get away with it because people don’t know about the ties and the relationship that the US has with these terrorist and countries. Learn the truth about 911. This is how there agenda will be persuade because the people aren’t educated. All we know is what is going on in our everyday lives and nothing beyond. Wake up!

    • chiefopiner says:

      Nubian,

      Other than the need for people to educate themselves on the subject (which I agree with) I am not quite sure exactly what it is about yourpost that you’re wanting to point out. Could you elaborate please?

  15. Bama dad says:

    Bob said:

    “If we would have gone up against Hitlers army then they would have kicked our asses which they later did in France anyway.”

    Actually not necessarily so, In September 1938 Briton alone was somewhat inferior to the German military but combined with France you would have been stronger than they. Most of the German military was on the Czechoslovakian border at this period and would have been vulnerable to attack. One of the reasons that Germany kicked the Anglo/French armies in May 1940 was Hitler was given 20 more month to rearm. I think that Germany was quiet vulnerable to coordinated attack up to the end of the Polish invasion. But as they say in hindsight it is easy to see the solution.

    • It is arguable, maybe with Frances help we might have been able to do it but looking at Germany’s war machine back then it would have been something they would have wanted to avoid which is what they did.
      Again I don’t think what Iran is doing now is comparable to what Germany was doing in the 1930s-40s, just seems to be a lot of sabre rattling going on right now, the same as what North Korea are doing.

      • Bama dad says:

        Hey Bob

        A friend of mine is married to a British woman and she and I throw words at each other to see if we know what they mean. I must admit she stumped me with the following:
        Plaster
        Biscuit
        Nappy
        Rubber (no everyone not one of those)
        Bonnet
        Silencer
        Banger

        Do ya’ll really use them thar words.

        • Plaster = Band Aid
          Biscuit = Cookie
          Nappy = Diaper
          Rubber = Both Eraser and Condom
          Bonnet = Hood (as in car hood)
          Silencer = Hmmm not sure about that one, I can only think of the kind you put at the end of a gun, could mean pacifier I guess but we call them dummy’s
          Banger = Sausage

          Yup we do use those words.

          • Well I knew what bangers were. So I guess I’m one up on you Bama. But what I want to know is, What in the crap is Spotted Dick? (some kind of food, for you nasty minded folks)

            With a name like that I know I ain’t a gonna eat it!

          • Bama dad says:

            She said a Silencer was a car muffler. Can I trow the bs flag on that one?

            • Maybe, problem with England is that we have so many different accents and words. You can travel 50 miles and get a completely different accent. I grew up in the middle of the country and moved to a city 120 miles North East it took me a couple of months to fully understand what they were saying.

    • Black Flag says:

      Hitler had no plan for war against Britain or France – he saw them as allies against Communism.

      One must remove the historical bias (victors write the history) to understand Hitler’s motives – which was to engage in a Great Battle against Communism.

      When you can see that – you can see why America also turned into a fascist state – it chose to take up the same Great Battle as Hitler.

      • Bama dad says:

        Have to agree with you on that one.

      • Hitler was not a fan of communism to be sure but he wasn’t a fan of quite a few things really, he was quite happy to cosy up to Russia when he needed to at the beginning of the war with the non-aggression pact he formed with them.

        We declared war on Germany when he invaded Poland because France was the next logical step for Hitler, he certainly did not have much love for France as shown by what he did at Compiègne.

        • Black Flag says:

          Ribbentrop gave some insights to Hitler’s plan when he was in jail after the war.

          ….

          The origins of the Anti-Comintern Pact went back to the summer and fall of 1935, when in an effort to square the circle between seeking a rapprochement with Japan and Germany’s traditional alliance with China, Ribbentrop together with General Ōshima devised the idea of an anti-Communist alliance as a way of binding China, Japan and Germany together
          ….

          China wasn’t interested, but Japan was….

          Further…

          Hitler who saw the Non-Aggression Pact as merely a pragmatic device forced on him by circumstances, namely the refusal of Britain or Poland to play the roles Hitler had allocated to them,…..

          Hitler needed to get closer to the Soviet Union while not provoking the Soviets to attack first. It was a genius move – invite the Soviets closer by sharing Poland.

          Hitler believed once the battle with the Soviets was engaged – with the Russians 1,000 miles further away from their main supplies and 1,000 miles closer to the Blitzkrieg of Germany, the French and British would join him.

          He was very surprised when they declared war on him.

  16. Neil Cavuto

    I’m sure President Obama will never say he quit or gave up or surrendered, when he told the world today it’s OK for Iran to use “peaceful” nuclear power.

    I’m sure he felt maybe we were beating our head against a wall that didn’t move, even as the nut behind it did.

    I’m sure he felt the need to do something different, something bold — anything bold — something unexpected — anything unexpected.

    So rather than show Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a club, President Obama invited him into one — an elite club, a “nuclear power” club. But a club that comes with an easy automatic upgrade to something called a “nuclear weapon” club. Not an easy leap, but not a huge leap either.

    A leap of faith for the president offering it; a leap of God knows what for the nut no doubt eager to accept it.

    It’s like we suddenly quit the fight. Even as the guy accepting the offer is now just getting geared up for one. Not with our objections. Today, with something else: our blessing.

    cavuto@foxnews.com

  17. Does anyone else live in an area where there are mosques they can visit? I find the things Danak13 experienced to be very unsettling. I like most of what I read on this site, much better than the trash talk on Fox.

    • chiefopiner says:

      The trash talk comes from many sources, not just Fox. The antagonism worsens the attitudes of the opposition causing a decline in the ability to discuss whatever the topic may be. This leads to extremism. And, in my view – extremism begets nothing but extremism, which is useless to finding or agreeing on solutions to implement to deal with the issue in the first place.

      Please note: I don’t find extremism here on this site. I see good, healthy, respectful and informative discussion (which is refreshing to say the least).

      • Hi, by trash talk I meant the filthy talk some of the people post just to be posting Fox should filter it but don’t. I read a lot of posts to see what people in general think. I can honestly say the scariest people are the environmental nuts.

        • chiefopiner says:

          Yeah, that’s a part of the group too.

          Have you ever tried reading the Daily Kos? There’s stuff there that would make sailors blush.

          • No, I am not familar with the Daily Kos. I like reading BBC and a few of the other international news organization to see what they are saying.

        • I agree there Lonie but I see wackos from all sides on Fox. SOme folks are just Nasty and shouldn’t be allowed in public or on the net. They try to filter out a lot but some folks know how to get around it. Like putting periods between each letter. I hardly ever bother looking at the forum anymore.

  18. I have a tendency to not listen to the Messiah any more – Reason being that I listened to the great majority of his campaign speeches and found the man to be a compulsive liar. He hasn’t changed since the election. I almost puked when he did his “curtsy” to King Saud.

    What should have been said – and this is just my opinion only! – “The Islamic faith has spawned a murderous clan of killers who have indiscriminately slaughtered millions of innocent people around the world in the name of the Islamic faith. These actions have caused the rest of the civilized world to look upon the entire Islamic faith as promoting and abiding these killings, so if the Islamic faith wants the rest of the world to like them then the Islamic faith must assist in the apprehension and eradication of these evil people who are bringing untold hatred of your Islamic religion. Until that happens, you may look forward to all the worlds hatred toward you, no matter how much you claim to be a religion of peace – the actions of those among your ranks speak louder than your words of peace!”

    • Black Flag says:

      “Entering the city [Jerusalem, July 15, 1099], our pilgrims pursued and killed Saracens up to the Temple of Solomon, in which they had assembled and where they gave battle to us furiously for the whole day so that their blood flowed throughout the whole temple.

      Finally, having overcome the pagans, our knights seized a great number of men and women, and the killed whom they wished and whom they wished they let live….

      Then, rejoicing and weeping from extreme joy, our men went to worship at the sepulchre of jour Saviour Jesus and thus fulfilled their pledge to Him….

      They also ordered that all the Saracen dead should be thrown out of the city because of the extreme stench, for the city was almost full of their cadavers.

      The live Saracens dragged the dead out before the gates and made piles of them, like houses.

      No one has ever heard of or seen such a slaughter of pagan peoples since pyres were made of them like boundary marks, and no one except God knows their number.”

      [Histoire anonyme de la premiere croisade, L. Brehier, ed.
      Paris: Champion, 1924 (From The Portable Medieval Reader,
      Ed. James Bruce Ross and Mary Martin McLaughlin)]

      • Well my friend, if you wish to see anything like that then just have patience and wait til Ack-med-the-nut-job gets his nukes like the Messiah has said he should have. He has stated many times over that he wished to wipe Isreal off the face of the Earth.

        What I have said is that if Islam wants to change what the rest of the civilized world sees in it, then Islam needs to join in the battle to get rid of all those who do this evil in the name of Islam.

        BTW – Just because that was done back in 1099 doesn’t mean that it has to be done in reverse today – two wrongs do not a right make!

    • I hope you are not serious, as Black Flag showed from that small excerpt terrible things have also been committed in the name of Christianity.

      • Where did I mention Christianity? I ask all of you this one very loud and important question – Why is it that you leap to blame someone for being a Christian when they point out that Islam is nothing but a cult of killers?

        I just pointed out something that I have said many times before in my life – Actions speak louder than words. So you jump to the conclusion that I am a Christian when for all you know I could be a Shinto, a Buddhist or a Hindu. What I am saying is – Do not take the side of the Islamist against the Christian.

        Islamist terrorists have been killing millions of innocent people over the past decades for no other reason than those people are not Islamists like themselves. Those actions speak much louder than those who say Islam is a religion of peace. I say that if Islam wants to change their image in this world, then they had better get off their collective butts and help put a stop to this insane carnage that their brethren have been engaged in for the last few hundred years or so.

        What say you?

        Oh, and FYI – Christianity has long ago put a complete stop to their past carnage in the name of God, you know like the Inquisition. Now it is Islam’s turn!

  19. Black Flag says:

    President Barack Obama’s comments on America’s history with Iran have caused something of a stir, as he became the first sitting US president to publicly admit to America’s role in the 1953 coup in Iran.

    “In the middle of the Cold War, the United States played a role in the overthrow of a democratically elected Iranian government,” Obama admitted, referring to the CIA’s role in the coup against Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddeq after he nationalized the Iranian oil industry.

    The US and British governments supported a coup d’etat in 1953 to ensure Western control over Iranian oil production. Iran remained under the control of the Shahist government until the 1979 Iranian Revolution, in which the current government ceased power.

    In the 30 years since the revolution, the US and Iran have had a hostile relationship. In the 1980s this led to the US and Britain supporting the Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein as a regional opponent to Iran. The US provided Iraq with considerable support during the eight year long Iran-Iraq War.

    This culminated on July 3, 1988, when a US warship attacked an Iranian civilian jetliner which it claims to have mistaken for an F14 fighter plane. The attack killed all 290 passengers aboard Iran Air Flight 655. Admiral Crowe, the Joint Chiefs chairman at the time, said the US “deeply regretted” the killings.

    • Black Flag says:

      (From News Wire)

    • “This culminated on July 3, 1988, when a US warship attacked an Iranian civilian jetliner which it claims to have mistaken for an F14 fighter plane”

      That statement is in error. The Iranian civilian aircraft was equipped with a transponder from a U.S. built F-4 Phantom which the then Iranian Air Force was using against the Iraqis. Iranian air traffic controllers directed that civilian flight toward that U.S. warship at an altitude and in a manner that an aircraft would do if mounting an attack on that ship. That is why it was shot down, and that is how the Islamic government of Iran decided to sacrifice its civilians to bring the world against the United States. Nothing but an overt act by the cowards that are Islamists.

      And you are still falling for their lies!

  20. Interesting got any links to back up the F-4 claim, every single piece of information regarding Flight 655 I have read say it was mistaken for an F-14, in fact a military report regarding rules of engagement highlighted the matter and said it was an F-14.139.

    http://www.loc.gov/rr/frd/Military_Law/Military_Law_Review/pdf-files/27687D~1.pdf

    Page 46
    OH! You’re my new favorite blogger fyi

    • Does it matter? They were (the Iranians) flying both types of aircraft at that time. I too remember the F-14 being talked about but, since the US media couldn’t tell the difference between the Wright Flyer and a 747, I don’t necessarily believe all I read.

      The Captain of the Vincennes had to make a decision. If he failed to do it, then their fate could have been that of the USS Cole or USS Starke. Such is the nature of “going into harms way”.

      • I am sure it mattered to the passengers on the flight when they exploded or fell to their deaths. If you look into the cause of the incident it was due to operator incompetence, I wasn’t in the captains shoes but he could have prevented this which is the bottom line.The question you should be asking is what they were doing there in the first place?

        • USWeapon says:

          Bob,

          Just a question. Are you a veteran. Have you ever been in a situation like that where the survival of those you lead will be based on your decisions? Every had to make a decision on the fly just like this one? I have, and perhaps that is why I am not so quick to judge. The bottom line is that arm-chair quarterbacking is easy. And I quickly tire of people doing it and condemning those who made the best decision that they could. Even those that write an official report, many of whom have never been in that situation either, often show an ignorance of the realities of a situation such as this.

          You ask the right question at the end, should they have been there in the first place? That is a valid question and one worth discussing. However, there is no point in doing your best Monday morning analysis of how the pros performed under pressure during Sunday’s big game. Just a thought.

          USW

          • danak13 says:

            Just a back up. I agree that the last question is the best one.

            AS to whether or not to shoot…as a former commander of troops on the ground, one is often put into situations where time does not allow all the protocol sometimes necessary. A commander has but one thought….those to whom he is responsible. It was unfortunate but the decision made on the battlefield was the correct decision. Do not over look one aspect. The commander that orders the shoot…still has to live with the ghosts. This is not easy to do…innocent or no. To kill on the battlefield yields the same result. One never forgets.

        • I’m talking about whether it matters that the transponder came from an F-4 or F-14. Both are Military aircraft, both are capable of carrying weapons that could seriously damage or sink the Vincennes.

          USW has an excellent point. Those of us who have found ourselves in tough situations over the years where force, be it a fist fight or a fire fight could easily happen know that very interesting things start happening in your brain. You often go on autopilot.

          Case in point, several years ago four undercover NYPD types stopped a suspect in the Bronx. the guy they were looking for was known to be armed and dangerous. The guy they stopped spoke poor English. How were the cops to know that? Anyway, when he was asked to halt, he went for his…wallet. At the same moment, one of the cops slipped and fell. The other three, thinking the fourth had been shot by the weapon they thought the suspect was pulling, opened up. 41 shots later, the suspect was dead. He was hit 19 times. A psychologist studying the case would comment that at such close range the 19 hits out of 41 told the whole story. It indicated just how crazy the situation became. It is not uncommon in cases like that for trained officers to miss with all their shots.

  21. TexasChem says:

    The American people need to make their minds up once and for all who we are really at war with in the middle east.Terrorists most of you will say. I agree but; these “Terrorists” are SUPPORTED financially by the Islamic governments of the nations in the OIC AND the majority of the civilian populations of these countries.

    Part of the motivation for terrorism is a desire to bring to life a new messianic era involving an Islamic superpower ruled by Islamic law. Muslims who put man’s law above God’s are as despised as America and Israel in these countries. The militants hope and aspire to restore an Islamic caliphate, which is “an integral part of Islam’s glory” in their eyes.

    The political issues of al-Qaeda and other Islamic fundamentalists certainly include anti-Americanism, which is evident from bin Laden’s speeches and his fatwa (religious decree) about the “Zionist-Crusader Alliance.” Although, Europeans waged the Crusades that ravaged Muslim countries, militants see the Crusades as a timeless battle between Islam and forces of western imperialism, which the United States currently seems to embody. But the fatwa’s title also suggests that anti-Semitism, or at least anti-Zionism, is part of the motivation. Furthermore, explaining the terrorism of bin Laden’s followers also involves understanding his reasons for a number of acts that have happened in Arab lands and taken the lives of many fellow Muslims.

    To the extent that Islamic extremism is anti-American, the reasons include—and go beyond—American freedom in the abstract.The United States is resented for its cultural hegemony, global political influence, and overwhelming conventional military power. Its cultural reach threatens their traditional values, including the organization of societies that privilege males and religious authority. It offers temptation, blurs social, ethical, and behavioral boundaries, and presages moral disorder.

    America’s political weight is seen as the hidden key to the durability of repressive regimes that fail to deliver prosperity while crushing dissent. Its support is cited to explain the power of Israel to oppress Muslims and degrade Islam. American military prowess is used to kill Muslims, as in Iraq, or is withheld to facilitate their extermination, as in Bosnia. The American cultural challenge to Islamic societies stands for a broader Western commitment to secularization, the relegation of religion to the private sphere, and a focus on the here and now instead of on either a hereafter for individuals, or a messianic era in which the righteous as a collective will partake.The Islamic belief system abhores this.

    So long as Muslims remain enslaved to an ideology and belief system, which only helps totalitarian Islamists gain political control, it is unjudicious, meaningless and patently dangerous to promote democracy in the Muslim world.

    Muslims are integrating themselves into western societies at a vastly alarming rate with the sole purpose of undermining western civilization and promoting their belief systems by becoming the majority at the local governmental level and eventually the state.Europe is a prime example.This is not a conspiracy theory this is a statement based upon facts that any of you can research for yourselves and discover.In fact I encourage you to do so.

    So now lemee’ break it down to ya’ on another level folks…
    these people believe only in the edict of “You are with us or against us!”Non Islamic believers have the choice of Dhimmi slavery, death or becoming muslim.Period.Nothing else.

    So again I ask you “Who are we at war with?”

  22. FOXNews Reporter in Iraq, Malini Wilkes: Bomb-Magnet

    Regarding today’s June 11th, 2009 11AM EST so-called Featured news flash from Iraq from FOXNews reporter Malini Wilkes:

    Today’s Watermelon-Man fatality in Iraq would never have occurred if Malini Wilkes was not galavanting, joyriding and tantalizing GI’s into flexing their muscles. It’s obvious they attracted the collateral damage on those innocent Iraqi watermelon porters who wandered too close to Malini and her cadre of boyfriends-UStroops-IED-bomb magnets because she’s so sexy.

    Send her home before she does cause more damage, for the love of Christ. Ernie Pyle she ain’t.

    -Pete Moss
    Good works spring from faith; they do not produce it. (Luther, Wartburg, 1522)

  23. Joshua Israel says:

    Lets take a look at it this way: if you had foresight, and if you could foresee that Iran would secretly develop a nuclear weapon and will use it against Israel; if you could see that Russia would use this Arab jihab against Israel to enforce a European union with China, Indonesia, Australia, and South America; and if you could forsee that a cosmic storm wave will devastate the entire solar system and life on earth; would it be proper for a President to try to eliminate world war, for just 2 years, so that the USA can be productive enough to prepare for these Extinction Level Events, rather that decrease our ability to defend against extinction, with a constant on-going war.

  24. thanks for this valuable info

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