Sunday, November 29, 2015

Remind Me Why We're Rubbing Elbows with the States Sponsoring ISIS.

Kinsella reminds us today to be very afraid of ISIS, that we're all in the terrorists' gunsights, and he's even got a link to the New York Times to prove it.

Pardon me if I'm somewhat underwhelmed by this imminent danger. Our governments, current and past, didn't and don't much care so why should I worry?

How can I say that? Easy, because while they're always at the ready to slap sanctions on outfits like Iran, branding them as state sponsors of terrorism, they turn a blind eye to the countries that are actually supporting Islamist terrorism - Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the rest of the Gulf States, and Turkey for starters.

Now the New York Times has its tits in the wringer over the presence of ISIS in the now failed state of Libya. OMG, how did that happen? It happened in part because we allowed it.

In February, 2011, I did an analysis of Libya's deteriorating civil war against Gaddafi. I argued that the US needed to tell Egypt to invade Libya and oust the tyrant, pointing out it would be an easy week's work for the Egyptians with their divisions of modern M-1A1 Abrams tanks and squadrons of late model F-16s. The reason I advocated a quick, decisive invasion was that Sunni Islamists had quite openly announced they intended to move into Libya to establish a toe hold in North Africa. They even blamed themselves for missing the opportunity to get in when Egyptian crowds forced out Mubarak but insisted that was a mistake they wouldn't repeat.

A few weeks later Gwynne Dyer came to the same conclusion, arguing that Egypt was Libya's last chance to avoid becoming a failed state.

So, what did we do? Bugger all or close enough to it. We decided to send the now ubiquitous sixpack of CF-18s to join an allied bombing campaign against Gaddafi forces, an effort that dragged on for eight months and one day before Gaddafi was finally toppled and butchered. By the time the civil war was over, Libya was a true failed state. Islamist forces were deeply entrenched, able to challenge the Libyan opposition forces, and that's where it remains today. The Islamists were even skilful enough to have killed off the one rebel leader who might have formed a post-Gaddafi government.

Today this might not sound too surprising. None of the Sunni states that could have brought the Libyan civil war to a quick end and sealed off the place before Islamist radicals could become entrenched saw fit to intervene. Sounds a bit like Syria, doesn't it? Or Iraq or even, more recently, Afghanistan.

What it comes down to is that it's not ISIS that scares me but Western governments that still coddle the Sunni states that are the lifeline to the Islamist terrorists. They scare me because they're perpetuating this madness by continuing to prop up these ISIS-friendly generals, sheikhs, emirs and princes.

Our Liberal friend recently wrote about his first trip to Israel. It began with this:

So, flying el Al into Israel for the first time, two miles up, I could literally see where Israel started, and where it ended. Israel, from the air, is green and lush. It is an oasis. All the countries arrayed around it mostly aren’t: they are a vastness of parched and barren dirt. They are landfill disguised as countries. Looking down at it all, I said to my traveling companion: “Well, that explains a thing or two.”

I would have left a comment but I'm not welcome on his site so I'll address it here. From the air you don't know where Israel starts and where it ends. Chances are the first lush territory you identify as Israeli is actually part of the West Bank now overrun by illegal settlements.

The Palestinian territory sites atop one of the three largest aquifers in the region, one that Netanyahu has already said is so vital to the future of Israel that it can never be returned. The Israeli army generously pipes water to the settlers. Palestinians have to apply for permission to access their own water resources, permission that isn't approved.  "Landfill disguised as countries." That's no accident. It's anything but. However our Liberal colleague is welcome to take a peek at this pictorial from The Guardian showing how Palestinians get access to water.

Here are a few other links he might be well served to check out:


Toby said...

Do you think that Justin, however well meaning, is in over his head?

The Mound of Sound said...

Christ, I hope not Toby. His father wouldn't fall for this crap and I hope enough of that progressive realism rubbed off on the son. Then again I find it unsettling how some 'Liberals' are as devoutly, unquestioningly pro-Israel as Harper ever was. If the party can't find nuance and balance on the Israel-Palestine issue then it's pretty susceptible on a lot of things.

This is one of the issues that keeps me in the Green Party fold.

Unknown said...

I agree Mound. Trudeau and Libs seem to support Israel close to Harpers blind support. Also listening to how Trudeau told Putin in privacy, to get out of the Ukraine, bothered me. My guess is that the libs are doing it because to disagree with Israel even mildly is to disagree with the US for supporting Israel. Also to side with Putin is to be against the US, who's propaganda calls Putin the aggressor. But I'm getting real tired of Canada's closed eye nonstand on foreign affairs regarding Israel and Ukraine. The Canadian Gov., should take a stand, just simply by dealing with the truth. If Chretien can say no to Bush about Iraq. Trudeau can say no to Obama about not giving one sided support to Israel and not blindly demonizing Putin.

Anonymous said...

Putin will never get out of Crimea. Crimea is mostly populated by ethnic Russians who even voted in the referendum ~ 1991 to join Russia, after collapse of CCCP.
Same goes for Donbass region who was and is ethnic Russian for ~1000 years and only got administratively assigned (as was Crimea) to Ukraine.
The fact is that Russia treated (rather badly) Ukraine a a vassal state with an unstated deal: you keep Russian speakers, we keep influence. That deal was disrupted by: surprise, surprise, drum roll... USA.
Trudeau Jr. has an ambitious plan of reforms. Perhaps he decided not fight too many battles at the same time ...

Northern PoV said...

Kinsella had a brief moment of relevance 15 years ago. Stock Day was an easy target ... in the end, the K ridicule likely stiffened the backs of the religious right and made them forever pawns of the Cons. ie he helped dumb down & decivilize the political dialogue in this country.

He is especially bad on issues beyond our borders. I fear that his views are typical of many in our new gov't. For example, the dubious trade minister is ethnically blinded on Ukraine issues much like folks of a certain religion go nuts on Israeli issues while being rational on most other stuff. sigh. I hope that Sacha remains a strong influence on the young PM.

Kinsella stopped posting my comments too. I enjoyed loads of schadenfreude as the new Lib team shunned him and pretty much did the opposite of what he recommended for the last couple of years.

Anonymous said...

"Remind Me Why We're Rubbing Elbows with the States Sponsoring ISIS."


The Mound of Sound said...

Anon, how's this for a deal? Just keep this YouTube music crap to yourself, please.

Anonymous said...

Those who complain about the form of a message simply don't like the message.

The Mound of Sound said...

okay, I'm sure you're right.

LeDaro said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LeDaro said...

Mound, the worst human rights violations are by Israel against Palestinians. Yet not a single western country is speaking out. 

I believe that all the turmoil in the Muslim Middle East is for the benefit of Israel.

The Mound of Sound said...

There is hope, LD. Europe seems to be getting pretty fed up with Netanyahu and his tactics.

Anonymous said...

Why are we rubbing elbows.
After you have accepted that fact then just accept that the average politician in any western country has no more mental capacity or understanding, of world events, than the average bar room three sheets to the wind political debater.
Add to this he or she is TOLD how to vote upon important world effecting decisions by an elected dictator.
Such are the effects of the British Parliamentary system and French style Republics.
Add to the mix; that the average voter in our "democracies" that we hold so dear to our hearts is just fucking stupid and will vote for the first candidate that will put money in her or his pocket and reduce the price of a six pack or bingo tickets.

The Mound of Sound said...

No argument here, Anon.

Anonymous said...

I can add nothing to this elegant debate other than to agree Kinsella's blog offers up lightweight opinion in windbag form. Oh, and please send money, the Law Society is out to disbar him for some douche thing or another, and he's skint, doncha know.