Category Archives: Peace

Mitt And Barack's Error In Judgement

President Obama
President Obama

BARACK OBAMA AND MITT ROMNEY SAID WHAT this week? What is wrong with these people? Let's go to the videotape in deferring to one man who knows his history—Israeli, American AND Islamic—the formidable, astute Benjamin "Bebe" Netanyahu, the only Winston Churchill caliber statesman on the scene in the West today.

What we have here is not a failure to communicate, but a failure of nerve to defend what is the resilient nature and exercise of liberty sprung free from the constraints of a misnamed social construction called political correctness. If only America had such a leader right now...

But as long as some of the more duplicitous "agents of change" around the horn are quoting Majid Khadouri's War and Peace in the Law of Islam to further their idea that Islam is just another religion, let's start small to see if those same Islamic apologists can twist and gnarl these excerpts into a generously perfumed bouquet with which to flummox the West:

"The state which is regarded as the instrument for universalizing a certain religion must perforce be an ever expanding state. The Islamic state, whose principal function was to put God’s law into practice, sought to establish Islam as the dominant reigning ideology over the entire world. It refused to recognize the coexistence of non-Muslim communities, except perhaps as subordinate entities, because by its very nature a universal state tolerates the existence of no other state than itself. Although it was not a consciously formulated policy, Muhammad’s early successors, after Islam became supreme in Arabia, were determined to embark on a ceaseless war of conquest in the name of Islam. The jihad was therefore employed as an instrument for both the universalization of religion and the establishment of an imperial world state. [page 55]

"Thus the jihad may be regarded as Islam’s instrument or carrying out its ultimate objective by turning all people into believers, if not in the prophethood of Muhammad (as in the case of the dhimmis), at least in the belief in God. The Prophet Muhammad is reported to have declared “some of my people will continue to fight victoriously for the sake of the truth until the last one of them will combat the anti-Christ.” Until that moment is reached the jihad, in one form or another, will remain as a permanent obligation upon the entire Muslim community. It follows that the existence of a dar al-harb is ultimately outlawed under the Islamic jural order; that the dar al-Islam is permanently under jihad obligation until the dar al-harb is reduced to non-existence; and that any community which prefers to remain non-Islamic—in the status of a tolerated religious community accepting certain disabilities—must submit to Islamic rule and reside in the dar al-Islam or be bound as clients to the Muslim community." [page 64]

Thanks to "gmccal" for these snippets. This book is an invaluable resource for those finally waking to the act that a seventh century ideology has no place in the 20th century without serious reforms. The book, according to my source, is organized as follows:

Book 1: Fundamental Concepts of Muslim Law
Chap 1. Theory of the State
a. Society and the State
b. The Juridical Basis of the State
c. A Divine Universal Nomocracy

Chap 2. Nature and Sources of Law
a. Customary Law and Islamic Law
b. Nature of Islamic Law
c. Sources of Law
d. Schools of Law
e. The Shia Doctrine

Chap 3. The Muslim Law of Nations

Book II The Law of War: The Jihad
Chap 4. Introduction

Chap 5. The Doctrine of Jihad
a. The Meaning of Jihad
b. Jihad as Bellum Justum
c. Jihad as Permanent War
d. The Shi'i and Khariji Doctrines of the Jihad
e. The Jihad and Secular War

Chap 6. Types of Jihad
a. The Jihad Against Polytheists
b. The Jihad Against Apostasy
c. The Jihad Against Baghi (an attempt at dissention)
d. The Jihad Against Deserters and Highway Robbers
e. The Jihad Against Scripturaries (Jews, Sabians and Christians)
f. The Ribat (Safeguarding the frontiers of dar al'Islam)

Chap 7. Military Methods
a. The Jihadists
b. Command of the Jihadists
c. Conduct of Fighting

Chap 8. The Initiation of War
a. The Call for Fighting
b. Necessity of "Invitation"
c. Negotiation

Chap 9. Land Warfare
a. Prohibited Acts
b. Treatment of Enemy Prisoners
c. Spies
d. Treatment of the Dead

Chap 10. Maritime Warfare
a. Islam and Sea Power
b. Muslim Law and the Sea
c. Rules and Practices of Naval Warfare
d. Naval Organization

Chap 11. Spoils of War
a. Meaning and Nature of the Spoils
b. Division of the Spoil
c. Immovable Property
d. Prisoners of War
e. Slaves

Chap 12.Termination of Fighting

Book III The Law of Peace
Chap 13. Introduction
Chap 14. Jurisdiction
a. Persons: Believers
b. Persons: Kafirs (Unbelievers) and Murtadds (Apostates)
c. The Head of State: The Imam
d. Muslim Territory: Dar al-Islam
e. Classification of Muslim Territory

Chap 15. Foreigners in Muslim Territory: Harbis and Musta'mins
a. Foreigners and Muslim Law
b. The Harbi (One who belings to dar al-harb)
c. The Aman (Pledge of Security)
d. The Muista'min;s Rights and Obligations
e. Termination of Aman
f. Importance of Aman

Chap 16. Muslims in Non-Muslim Territory
a. Non-Muslim Terriroty: Dar al Harb
b. Conduct of the Muslim in a Non-Muslim Territory Under Aman
c. Conduct of the Muslim in Non-Muslim Territory Without Aman
d. Muslim Prisoners

Chap 17. Status of Dhimmis
a. Islam and Non-Muslim Subjects
b. Meaning of Dhimmi
c. Dhimmi Compact with Muhammad
d. The Legislation of "Umar
e. Jizya and Kharaj
f. The Covenant of `Umar
g. Dhimmi Rights and Obligations
h. Conclusion

Chap 18. Treaties
a. Treaty Making Power
b. Legal Nature of Treaties
c. Prophet Muhammad's First Treaty
d. The Hudaybiya Treaty
e. Dhimmi Pacts as Constitutional Charters
f. Muslim Treaties Under Muhammad's Successors
g. General Characteristics of Treaties
h. Termination of Treaties

Chap 19. Commercial Relations
a. Islam and Commerce
b. Non-Muslim Trade with Dar al'Islam
c. Muslim Trade with Dar al'Harb
d. Significance of Foreign Trade

Chap 20. Arbitration
a. Arbitration Before Islam
b. Islam and Arbitration
c. Arbitration between Ali and Mu'awiya
d. Significance of Arbitration

Chap 21. Diplomacy
a. Muslim Conception of Diplomacy
b. Emissaries
c. Reception of Emissaries
d. Functions of Diplomatic Missions
e. Muslim Diplomacy and World Politics
f. Importance of Diplomacy

Chap 22. Neutrality
a. Islam and Neutrality
b. The Status of Ethiopia
c. Nubia
d. Cyprus

Chap 23. Epilogue
a. Changes in the Character of Dar al'Islam
b. Recognition of Christendom by Islam Under Ottoman Rule
c. Christendom's Attitude Toward the Ottoman Empire
d. The Ottoman Empire and the Modern Law of Nations
e. Integration of Islam into the Family of Nations
f. The Secularism of Law and State
g. Conclusion

Glossary of Terms
Bibliography (Supplies the original sources and the
fundamental "modern" studies that have a direct
bearing on the subject of war and peace in Islam)

Over all, this 1955 publication, reprinted in June of 2007, will be an invaluable reference for contemporary analysts and researchers who dare to resist the disinformation and propaganda that is emanating from all ends of the globe about the historical, and now revived threat this pernicious Islamic ideology presents to civilization.

The Risky Business Of Peace In Our Lifetime

THE WASHINGTON TIMES has posted an editorial that does not actually break through the wall of voodoo that cloaks our Western media from the truth, the same truth that anyone with an ounce of initiative can verify at the local library or online using a treasure basket of sources, but they've pricked it. They've named the liar in the room.

Penetrating Influence on Education

How long, we ponder, before this conservative daily newspaper forgets its bold stroke of relevance, or more to the point, why aren't they screaming this fundamental information on the front page on every issue that hits the street until a scandal breaks out in citizen outrage, spreading across America to snatch the masks off these imposters, finally awakening the sleeping giant that is America? Islam is without question a proud ideology of the sword, for the sword, and by the sword. It's not rocket science to predict that Islam on the march will continue to practice various passive-aggressive strategies of gesticulative deceit, influence, and infiltration that strategically overwhelmed forces have used in the past, including our own colonial and American forces in an attempt to defeat a targeted enemy. On the one hand numerous Jihadi have been colorfully clear in announcing who, what, why, and when that enemy must fall.

Israel and the West are the prime targets. Little Satan and Big Satan is what they are programmed to despise and devour. Why? Because we are miserable houses worthy of death. Monkeys and pigs in the great scheme of things. When? Oh, they've been at it for a long time, and boast of winning because they love death while we love life. And they believe there are more of them than there are of us. Pure demographics. We lose. They win. It's that simple.

On the other hand, a well-equipped army of well-placed operatives enter the elite arena dripping with tidings of peace which quickly turn to masterful scoldings when things don't favor their plan to subvert without arousing suspicion or if anyone dares to impune the integrity of their ideology. It's textbook Islamic war after all, snipped right out of the war manual called the Qu'ran, and so much the better that the West is suffering a personality crisis in refusing to admit to itself she is involved up to her soon to be smited neck in a ruthless war, and had better come to her senses while she still can muster up the courage to resist her attacker.

So why doesn't some newspaper blow the whistle on these master swindlers among us who take us American citizens as fools, even as they execute plans to do much the same to us as they have done to every population they have infiltrated and emerged with the upper hand these past 1400 years when the fruit was ripe for the picking? Look around the globe. Muslims are doing what they've always done when the opportunity for aggression is favorable. Has the entire West been brought to its knees in a whimper without even recognizing how the enemy fights its interestingly modern yet timeless battles of conquest? Oi vey.

Of course, we know the answer to that question is that not every Muslim is out to cut off your head and steal your girlfriend. Therein lies the trouble. Not every snake in the grass is poisonous, but...

Here is a clip of the Times editorial:

"Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached."

The pope said he regrets any hurt feelings, but some Muslims want more contrition. Sheik Yusef Abu Hussein, mufti of Karak in Jordan, said, "We wanted him to clearly apologize. What the pope said about the prophet Muhammad is untrue. Islam did not spread through the power of sword. It's a religion of tolerance and faith." A recent post on a jihadist Web site took a somewhat different tone, denouncing "this cursed Pope" and calling on its readers to "strive to kill him, strive to slaughter him." That Muslim poster must have missed the sermon on tolerance and faith.

Paleologus, the Byzantine emperor, was something of an authority on Muslim military power. He spent much of his reign defending his hard-pressed realm from the predatory Ottoman Empire. Before ascending to the throne, he spent a year in the court of Sultan Bayezid I as an honorary hostage and was forced to accompany the Ottoman army that conquered Philadelphia, the last Christian bastion in Anatolia. The city was renamed Alasehir, the city of Allah.

Those who object to the idea that Islam was spread by the sword are not at war with Pope Benedict but with history. What are now called Muslim lands used to be Christian, Jewish and Zoroastrian lands. Force was the key element in the rapid expansion of the caliphate in the century between the death of Muhammad in 632 and the Muslim defeat at the hands of the Franks in the Battle of Tours in 732 in what is now southern France. The rules of engagement were laid down in the Hadith Sahih Muslim 19:4294, which instructs Muslims to offer any unbelievers they encounter three choices: to convert, pay tribute or be forcibly subjugated.

Read it all.

No matter how many peaceniks dance of the head of a pin, there will come a time when each of these angels will melt away if they can at the approach of darkness. A candle can light the darkness but the breath of the beast or thegentlest breeze can quickly extinguish it. Sometimes force must address force because tolerance of the intolerant is tyranny. And foolishness in the darkness of peace is a risky option.

Congratulations, Mr. President

As we have learned six years later, Barack Hussein Obama believes that HE IS THE LAW of the land...

THERE WE HAVE IT. The end of an era. A turn of the page. A so-called post-racial but racially-charged election is now in the books. And the winner and 44th President of the United States of America is the junior Senator from the Great State of Illinois—Barack Obama. We, at The Two-fisted Quorum, offer no apologies for owning our votes, and casting them for the opposition, but now that the Democratic ticket has won this historic election, it is time to move on past the ugly tactics this election process on both sides of the aisle could never transcend. It is time to act like grown-up Americans, always on the watch, but never the sore loser...

This will be a tough cycle. Our enemies who will still insist on hurting us as Americans, and our enemies who will still resist this election are surely lurking amongst us and within us. Let us join our neighbors in praying that President Obama be granted the courage to accept the things he cannot change, change the things he can, and be granted the wisdom to know the difference.

And let us all echo the sentiments expressed by John McCain in his concession speech last night in Phoenix.

May we be inspired to find that all of our fears and anxieties of a radical leftist—smug, thug, and snug in the pockets of corporate interests—sitting in the White House were misguided and nothing but ephemeral mists now evaporated with the pulsing warmth of the sun because here is a new kind of national leader who truly does love America and ALL its people...

I even read today that he is bringing back all the manufacturing jobs our corporations so cavalierly sent away. Rebuilding American industry so that we don't depend on steel and other integral products from our enemies has been a major issue for The Two-fisted Quorum.

May we also not be fooled again...

Good Question, Bad Bread


Found this on the Washington Times website. If this is the party of Kennedy, why has this party never reiterated his message? We know the answer. The donkey party has attained revolution mode. Their prime objective is the full teleological assault of progressivism.

“We dare not forget today that we are the heirs of that first revolution. Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans—born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage, and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and the success of liberty."

John Fitzgerald Kennedy—January 20, 1961

And I also agree with this next poster:

"You cannot lead the military when you consider them torturers, murderers and Nazi's or remain silent while senior members of the party refer to them as such. You cannot support the troops and not the war when a majority of the Congress authorized the war. You cannot expect our military to win the war when the leaders in Congress say it is lost. You cannot remain deaf when the majority of the citizens recognize energy dependence as a national security threat. You cannot build national security integrity with a blame agenda."

And there is more...

The problem is that the current Democrat party is most definitely NOT the party of Kennedy or Roosevelt. In fact, if either of those men were running today the Democrat party would treat them pretty much the way they are treating poor Joe Lieberman. Joe is from the same party as Kennedy, Truman and Roosevelt, and the current Democrats are pretty much throwing him under the bus.

Lieberman is for a strong national defense and prefers negotiating from strength. The current Democrats, a.k.a. the party of Obama, want to negotiate from weakness, want to cut and run, want to slash our defense budget, our forces, and equipment.

I think Kennedy, Truman, and Roosevelt would be horrified as to how much their party had been taken over by the fruitcake lefties like Kerry (who is, in my mind, a traitor), Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Jimmy Carter, and other cowards and appeasers. No wonder the country doesn't trust them.

Okay, let's slice this cake another way. The Democrats are the party of Fonda, the party of Streisand, the party of Moore, the party of "Winter Soldier" Kerry, the party of Sheehan. The Democrats HATE the military and feel that it should be used as "supercops" or "the Peace Corp with guns."

it is neither, and however you wish to construe the (mis)adventure in Iraq, the military has kicked proverbial butt there. It's the Jackass Party who made a big deal out of Abu Ghraib and Gitmo and Haditha because it is more important for the Democrats to run down the soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines than it is to win the war(s).

This is why Democrats lose the military vote and the confidence of the American public on national security, and on this one, FDR and JFK roll in their graves!

The Myth Of Peace


Child Brides of Yemen Muslims, Sanctioned By Hamas

Myth: Islam is a Religion of Peace
Muhammad was a peaceful man who taught his followers to be the same. Muslims lived peacefully for centuries, only fighting in self-defense when it was necessary. True Muslims would never act aggressively.

The Truth:

Muhammad organized 65 military campaigns in the last ten years of his life and personally led 27 of them. The more power he attained, the smaller the excuse needed to go to battle, until finally he began attacking tribes merely because they were not part of his growing empire. These are the natural acts of a standard ops military psychology, nothing extraordinary. After Muhammad’s death, his most faithful followers and even his own family turned on each other almost immediately. There were four Caliphs (leaders) in the first twenty-five years. Three of the four were murdered. The third Caliph was murdered by the son of the first. The fourth Caliph was murdered by the fifth, who left a 100-year dynasty that was ended in a gruesome, widespread bloodbath by descendents of Muhammad’s uncle. Muhammad’s own daughter, Fatima, and his son-in-law, Ali, who both survived the pagan hardship during the Meccan years safe and sound, did not survive Islam after the death of Muhammad. Fatima died of stress from persecution within three months, and Ali was later assassinated. Their son (Muhammad’s grandson) was killed in battle with the faction that became today’s Sunnis. His people became Shias. The relatives and personal friends of Muhammad were mixed into both warring groups, which then fractured further into hostile sub-divisions as Islam grew.

Muhammad left his men with instructions to take the battle against the Christians, Persians, Jews and polytheists (which came to include millions of unfortunate Hindus). For the next four centuries, Muslim armies steamrolled over unsuspecting neighbors, plundering them of loot and slaves, and forcing the survivors to either convert or pay tribute at the point of a sword.

Companions of Muhammad lived to see Islam declare war on every major religion in the world in just the first few decades following his death—pressing the Jihad against Hindus, Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians, and Buddhists.

By the time of the Crusades (when the Europeans began fighting back), Muslims had conquered two-thirds of the Christian world by the sword, from Spain to Syria, and across North Africa. The Arab slave-trading routes would stay open for 1300 years, until pressure from Christian-based countries forced Islamic nations to declare the practice illegal (in theory).

Today, there is not another religion in the world that consistently produces terrorism in the name of religion as does Islam. The most dangerous Muslims are nearly always those who interpret the Qur’an most transparently. They are the fundamentalists or purists of the faith, and believe in Muhammad’s mandate to spread Islamic rule by the sword, putting to death those who will not submit.

The holy texts of Islam are saturated with verses of violence and hatred toward those outside the faith. In sharp contrast to the Bible, which generally moves from relatively violent passages to far more peaceful ones, the Qur’an travels the exact opposite path. The handful of earlier verses that speak of tolerance are overwhelmed by an avalanche of later ones that carry a much different message. While Old Testament verses of blood and guts are generally bound by historical context within the text itself, Qur'anic imperatives to violence usually appear open-ended.

By any objective measure, the "Religion of Peace" has been the harshest, bloodiest religion the world has ever known.

Under no circumstances, should we, the American People, permit or accept that this fate of creeping jihad into our country, although it is already here. Battles are already being fought, and yet, the administration continues to hamstring our military and name our enemy, while allowing unchecked immigration from Islamic countries to flood onto our shores.

Some of our "leaders" need to be informed in no uncertain terms, by whatever means necessary, of the words of Samuel Adams, early American patriot:

"If you love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.

—Samual Adams, 1776

Before It Is Too Late

Natural Islam
Natural Islam
THERE IS THE OLD STORY about a man whose family belonged to the German aristocracy prior to World War II, owning a number of large industries and estates. When asked how many German people were true Nazis, the answer he gave can guide our attitude toward fanaticism.

“Very few people were true Nazis “he said,” but many enjoyed the return of German pride, and many more were too busy to care. I was one of those who just thought the Nazis were a bunch of fools. So, the majority just sat back and let it all happen. Then, before we knew it, they owned us, and we had lost control, and the end of the world had come. My family lost everything. I ended up in a concentration camp and the Allies destroyed my factories.”

We are told again and again by “experts” and “talking heads” that Islam is the religion of peace, and that the vast majority of Muslims just want to live in peace. Yet when we glance at at map we see Islam is on the march worldwide, and violence is in its step. Yet, even George Bush speaks of the religion of peace, as if the American people are too stupid to look around and note the discrepancies for themselves.

Although this unqualified assertion of majority of Muslims being peaceful may be true, it is entirely irrelevant. It is meaningless fluff, meant to make us feel better, take the edge off our fear which is attacked as irrational, and meant to somehow diminish the spectre of fanatics rampaging across the globe in the name of Islam. The fact is that the fanatics rule Islam at this moment in history, and we are told to ignore our senses..

It is the fanatics who march. It is the fanatics who wage any one of 50 shooting wars worldwide. It is the fanatics who systematically slaughter Christian or tribal groups throughout Africa and are gradually taking over the entire continent in an Islamic wave. It is the fanatics who bomb, behead, murder, or honour kill. It is the fanatics who take over mosque after mosque. It is the fanatics who zealously spread the stoning and hanging of rape victims and homosexuals. The hard quantifiable fact is that the “peaceful majority”, the “silent majority”, is cowed and extraneous.

Communist Russia was comprised of Russians who just wanted to live in peace, yet the Russian Communists were responsible for the murder of about 20 million people. The peaceful majority were irrelevant. China’s huge population was peaceful as well, but Chinese Communists managed to kill a staggering 70 million people.

The average Japanese individual prior to World War II was not a warmongering sadist. Yet, Japan murdered and slaughtered its way across South East Asia in an orgy of killing that included the systematic murder of 12 million Chinese civilians; most killed by sword, shovel, and bayonet.

And, who can forget Rwanda , which collapsed into butchery. Could it not be said that the majority of Rwandans were “peace loving”?

Yes Virginia
Yes, Virginia...this is why we vote.
History lessons are often incredibly simple and blunt, yet for all our powers of reason we often miss the most basic and uncomplicated of points: Peace-loving Muslims have been made irrelevant by their silence. Peace-loving Muslims will become our enemy if they don’t speak up, because like my friend from Germany, they will awaken one day and find that the fanatics own them, and the end of their world will have begun.

Peace-loving Germans, Japanese, Chinese, Russians, Rwandans, Serbs, Afghanis, Iraqis, Palestinians, Somalis, Nigerians, Algerians, and many others have died because the peaceful majority did not speak up until it was too late.

As for us who watch it all unfold; we must pay attention to the only group that counts; the fanatics who threaten our way of life. Here are some intuitions with regard to the coming strife of all-out war:

The Netherlands not long ago were, as was the entirety of Europe, underfoot and oppressed of the barbaric Third Reich. Not unlike their European counterparts, they, once again, suffer from a not dissimilar lack of foresight. The Islamists, along with their leftist aiders and abettors, cry out, demanding Fitna be banned—and the handwringing begins with frivolous earnest.

The airy Euros insist on digging the proverbial hole deeper and deeper. This has been an inherent mindset for a century, if not more. Then, without shame, they will beg the big, bad wolf called America to disinter them from the grave in which they, blindly, entombed themselves.

This is not to be smug—America, and without doubt, her neighbor to the north, also wobble when it comes to dealing with Islam, radical or not—finding themselves rooted in the insanity of political-correctness and gross expediency.

Question of the day: How many leftists and other Islamist apologists will view Fitna? I fear far more of them are secreting personal Qu'rans and prayer mats under their beds for the day, they hope, of capitulation. After all, they rationalize, this hated capitalism will also fall in this false flag scenario.

Cheating On The Litmus Test

Where once was sand and rock, Israel blooms despite its enemies.

When Middle Eastern Muslims speak of "peace" what they really mean is the annihilation of Israel. They announce with nuanced fervor "the Jews stole our land" but this bit of moral subterfuge is as much a lie as their delusion that Kuffirs "steal our oil."

Last time I looked, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kuwait, the UAE and others were making a killing off the West, building grand monuments to their own egos and flexing their militant nee religious muscles as a result of this sudden lucre in their midst, and salivating for more. Prior to 1948, the Zionists, by and large, bought marginal real estate (Tel-Aviv was sand dunes) from the large Arab landowners. The Arabs got top price for the real estate. Many Arab land sellers then antagonized the average Arab with denunciations about the Jews coming into the area.

The real objection that these Arabs nurse to the hilt is that Jews should dare create, much less prosper, a non-Dhimmi state of their own in Dar-al-Islam at all. Hence the 1948 war and all subsequent hostilities.

Though Zionism is essentially a defensive ideology (as opposed to offensive Islam), at some point Israel will have to become extremely aggressive in order to survive. The Arabs have consistently underestimated the Mideast Jews who relocated there, as well as the Holocaust survivors who fled to Israel. "Never again," means "never again".

Just yesterday, a Jewish friend of mine, Ed Rindler, a 20-year anti-terrorism veteran of the US State Department recently returned from a vacation in Israel and Jordan. Ed made several remarks or gave answers to questions I posed that seemed at odds with each other. First of all, when I asked did he feel safe, he answered affirmatively. But he also added that as a secular Jew, he found himself empathizing and actually becoming more of a Zionist with time as reports of missles lobbed into Israel every day he was there took root in his psyche, echoing the "Never again" sentiment.

He was also amazed that when riding in the country, one could immediately spot whether he was approaching an Israeli village or a Arab one. The tell-tale sign was simple green grass. Of the billions of dollars in foreign aid sent to Palestine few of them ever get into the ground except with the death of one of the corrupt pocket-lined officials. But missles? Oh yes, the Arabs have AN ABUNDANCE of them.

Sort of like cheating on the litmus test of success, isn't it...