Category Archives: Nuclear

Whistling Past The Graveyard

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Tent Dwellers Make War, Too

The following article by John Perazzo originally published at Frontpage Magazine. Last week, columnist Paul Weyrich reported that there is credible evidence that Osama bin Laden has acquired twenty suitcase-sized nuclear bombs from Chechen rebels in the former Soviet Union and smuggled them into the United States by way of the Mexican border. If that is true, the al Qaeda kingpin has laid the groundwork for an “American Hiroshima” plan that he intends to carry out in the very near future. Once bin Laden gives the signal, his henchmen will proceed to detonate their explosives in a number of separate U.S. cities, leaving them in irreparable ruins and killing tens of millions of people in the process.

In other words, while the Left, ever since 9/11, has argued passionately against sealing the southern U.S. border on grounds that such an initiative would constitute “racism,” “xenophobia,” a violation of “human rights,” a repudiation of “American values,” and a “threat to the environment,” bin Laden has quietly and happily exploited our national insanity and set the stage, from his cave somewhere in the remote mountains of Pakistan, for the cataclysmic end of the most powerful nation in world history.

If bin Laden indeed has been able to set in motion this nightmare scenario, he succeeded for one very simple reason: America’s military might has been offset by a weakness of spirit that has become a hallmark of the modern Western world. It is a frailty that derives entirely from the leftist worldview that has infected America over the past half-century. This view identifies Western (especially American) culture as a uniquely evil, exploitative player in the story of mankind, and depicts all acts of barbarism against the U.S. as wholly understandable reactions to American transgressions. It is a mindset that has gradually, incrementally, and inexorably made its “long march through the institutions,”—the schools, the seminaries and churches, the media, the entertainment industry, the courts, and the political sphere—just as the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci prescribed in the 1920s.

Gramsci understood that by poisoning the culture from within, and by so degrading and undermining the culture’s faith in itself, the American people could be compelled to believe, to their very marrow, that their heritage was in fact unworthy of defending against those who would destroy it under the banner of so-called “multiculturalism.” Gramsci and his successors were patient enough to allow this time-consuming process to unfold, knowing that the American way of life could be bled to death ever-so-slowly, almost imperceptibly, without the firing of a single shot until the time was just right.

The fact that the person who ultimately may fire that shot is a seventh-century-style savage whose fanatical “religious” worldview bears no resemblance whatsoever to the ideals of Gramsci and his fellow Marxists, is not as strange as one might think. As bin Laden himself declared in a fatwa issued on Al-Jazeera Television just before American and British troops entered Iraq in March 2003: “The interests of Muslims and the interests of the socialists coincide in the war against the crusaders.”

What distinguishes a large proportion of the American population from bin Laden's Islamists goes far beyond the genocidal ambitions of the latter. The most vital distinction is that the Islamists believe, with every fiber of their being, in the legitimacy (indeed, the supremacy) of their culture and the nobility of their mission.
Given that bin Laden’s agents of nuclear holocaust apparently were smuggled into our country by way of the Mexican border, it is worth recalling what some of the luminaries of the Left have had to say, in recent years, vis a vis defending that border by means of increased surveillance and the construction of a fence to repel illegal invaders:

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU): Former ACLU Executive Director Ira Glasser attributes the concerns that many Americans have about illegal immigration to a “wave of anti-immigrant hysteria.” Wade Henderson of the ACLU’s Washington, DC office claims that the desire to regulate immigration can be traced directly to “hostility motivated by nativism, racism, and red scare.” In May 2008, the ACLU produced a tearjerker advertisement lamenting how a fence somewhere along the U.S.-Mexico border had ruined Mother’s Day for a Mexican woman and her daughter by keeping them apart.

American Friends Service Committee (AFSC):  Viewing the United States as the world’s primary agent of evil and exploitation, this group has posted on its website a detailed list of strategies by which illegal aliens—in the event that they are interrogated, detained, or arrested—can avoid cooperating with immigration authorities or police. According to AFSC, a border fence would “disrupt” area residents’ “way of life” and “has never proven to be a long-term, practical solution to the immigration dilemma.” The organization further contends that such a fence would constitute “a form of violence to the environment” because “it is expected to cause irreversible damage to the Tijuana River Estuary environs as well as cause erosion and flooding in Tijuana.”

Border Action Network (BAN): This neo-Marxist group seeks “to ensure that those who are most impacted [i.e., illegal aliens] by border and immigration policies are at the forefront of movements calling for human dignity and civil rights …” Advocating the dissolution of American borders, BAN calls for unchecked, unregulated migration into and out of the United States. The organization has filed lawsuits against what it calls “an ugly movement of armed, militia-style civilian groups” and “anti-immigrant, white supremacist groups” —such as American Border Patrol and Ranch Rescue—for their practice of detaining illegal aliens and calling government border agents to arrest them. BAN co-director Jennifer Allen said in 2002: “They [illegal immigrants] have civil rights and human rights that take precedence over defending the country.” Former BAN spokesman Chris Ford, for his part, expresses concern that “this [fence] plan will cause massive environmental destruction” affecting in particular the Sonoran Pronghorn, an animal that resembles an antelope and is considered an “endangered species.”

National Council of Churches (NCC): A longtime enemy of the United States, NCC in the 1950s and 1960s, under the rubric of charity, provided financial assistance to the communist regimes in Yugoslavia and Poland. In the 1970s it helped finance Soviet-sponsored guerrilla incursions into Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mozambique, and Angola. It the 1980s it contributed large sums of money to the Marxist Sandinista Party in Nicaragua and communist guerrillas in El Salvador. Moreover, the organization has supported Fidel Castro’s (and now his successor’s) regime in Cuba for decades.

Thus Americans, whistling past the graveyard, have voluntarily placed themselves in a rhetorical and ideological straight jacket, fearing to admit that they can even perceive the plain reality that Islam’s predominant teachings and emphases—as set forth in the trilogy consisting of the Koran, the Hadith, and the Sira—differ greatly from those of Western religious traditions.

In April 2008, NCC co-signed an interfaith letter to Congress expressing “grave concern over the environmental destruction currently occurring in the U.S.-Mexico border region” as a result of the “hasty construction of hundreds of miles of fencing along the border.” “The current path of the border fence,” NCC explained, “cuts through places like Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, home to over 500 species of plants, 50 species of mammals, and nearly 300 species of birds. Construction of the fence is severing migration routes and destroying thousands of acres of wildlife habitat. In Arizona alone, 39 species protected or proposed to be protected under the Endangered Species Act are being adversely affected by Border Patrol activities, including construction of the fence….”

Defenders of Wildlife (DOW): This environmentalist group has warned that the erection of a border fence will have “serious and lasting” effects on the region’s wildlife, water, and air. According to DOW associate Jenny Neeley, such a fence will significantly impact biological diversity along the border by preventing desert animals from moving around freely. “Right now,” she says, “on the U.S.-Mexico border there are 47 endangered species, including the jaguar, the ocelot, the lesser long nosed bat and numerous bird species.” Neeley further complains that the bright lights used by border patrol officers during overnight hours can cause great harm to “nocturnal animals.”

National Council of La Raza (NCLR): This organization favors amnesty for illegals already residing in the U.S., and open borders henceforth. In NCLR’s calculus, any restriction on the free movement of immigrants constitutes a violation of their civil liberties, and any reduction in government assistance to illegal border-crossers is “a disgrace to American values.” Thus NCLR supports continued mass Mexican immigration to the United States, and hopes to achieve, by the sheer weight of numbers, the re-partition of the American Southwest as a new state called “Aztlan”—to be controlled by its alleged rightful owners, the people and government of Mexico. In October 2006, NCLR President and CEO Janet Murguía said that the prospect of a border fence “doesn’t solve the immigration issue, it makes it worse.”

Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF): Over the course of its 40-year history, MALDEF has undertaken numerous legal campaigns to abet the cause of illegal immigration. In 1994, for example, the organization condemned Operation Gatekeeper, a U.S. government program intended to restore integrity to a particularly porous stretch of the California-Mexico border. Claiming that this initiative was callously “diverting” illegal border-crossers “from California to the harsh and dangerous Arizona desert,” MALDEF charged that Americans opposing unrestricted immigration were motivated largely by “racism and xenophobia.”

This type of trembling population—echoing dutifully the cacophony of empty platitudes uttered by all manner of America-hating, know-nothing leftists in the political arena, in the media, in the pulpit, and in the university classroom—have provided Osama bin Laden with more than enough assurance that he is facing an enemy ripe for slaughter on a scale never before seen.

In 2006 MALDEF’s Interim President and General Counsel John Trasviña called the prospective border fence “a travesty” that “will take years to complete and does nothing to address America’s immigration or labor needs.” An official MALDEF statement said that such a fence would “make illegal crossings more deadly and dangerous” and would cause hardship for “American families who want to be reunited with loved ones.”

League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC): In December 2005 LULAC created a website titled “WeAreRacists.com,” which portrayed the Minuteman Project—a nonviolent organization of U.S. citizens who alert the Border Patrol to the presence of unauthorized border-crossers in the American Southwest—as “an anti-immigrant group” composed of “racists, cowards, un-Americans (sic), vigilantes, [and] domestic terrorists” who are “often affiliated with white supremacy groups.”

LULAC opposes border-patrol policies that would authorize the U.S. military to prevent illegal immigration, on grounds that “military personnel are not trained for border patrolling and might easily violate the civil rights of those they intervene with.” José Velez, who headed the League from 1990 to 1994, has said that the U.S. Border Patrol is “the enemy of my people and always will be.” In 2006 LULAC National President Hector. M. Flores condemned the prospective security fence as “an affront to immigrant communities [that] will create a permanent scar in the relationship between the United States and our southern neighbors.” “Building a ‘Berlin’ style wall between ourselves and our neighbor,” he added, “is un-American, undemocratic, and unacceptable in a free society.

Democrats: In April 2008, fourteen House Democrats, including eight committee chairmen, said they would file a brief supporting a legal challenge to the Bush administration’s plans to finish erecting nearly 500 miles of fencing on the U.S.-Mexico border by the end of the year. Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers said, “Our responsibility to be stewards of the earth cannot be thrown aside for the sake of an ill-conceived border fence.”

If indeed Osama bin Laden’s nuclear holocaust looms just over the horizon, life as we have known it in this country will soon be gone forever. All that remains to be seen is how far the Islamists will go to humiliate and degrade us before striking their lethal blows. And we can trace this awful fate directly to the imbecilic, catastrophic policies of organizations and individuals like those listed above. While they have lectured us on stupidities like the “rights” of “undocumented” border-crossers and the plight of “endangered” long-nosed bats, our enemies were not nearly as timid as we were.

What distinguishes a large proportion of the American population from bin Laden's Islamists goes far beyond the genocidal ambitions of the latter. The most vital distinction is that the Islamists believe, with every fiber of their being, in the legitimacy (indeed, the supremacy) of their culture and the nobility of their mission. Nothing can deter them from their single-minded quest to conquer and murder in the name of Allah.

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Islam's Demographic Sludge

By contrast, many tens of millions of Americans have been conditioned, by decades of leftist assaults on the legitimacy of their history and traditions, to doubt that those traditions even merit a stiff defense. Only in such a culture would so many people—from anonymous men and women on any street corner to the occupant of the Oval Office—be so preoccupied with reiterating, ad nauseam, the notion that authentic Islam is, at its essence, a “religion of peace” that unfortunately was “hijacked” by a “small minority of extremists.” Only in such a culture would it be widely understood, as it is in America, that any deviation from these absurd talking points opens one up to charges of “Islamophobia” and “bigotry.”

Thus Americans, whistling past the graveyard, have voluntarily placed themselves in a rhetorical and ideological straight jacket, fearing to admit that they can even perceive the plain reality that Islam’s predominant teachings and emphases—as set forth in the trilogy consisting of the Koran, the Hadith, and the Sira—differ greatly from those of Western religious traditions.

Their fear of stating this simple, inarguable truth closely parallels their fear of demanding that our nation strengthen its border security to the point where illegal entry is made impossible—lest they be smeared as “racists” and “nativists” who are unconcerned with the “dignity” and the “common humanity” of “impoverished undocumented workers,” blah, blah, blah.

This type of trembling population—echoing dutifully the cacophony of empty platitudes uttered by all manner of America-hating, know-nothing leftists in the political arena, in the media, in the pulpit, and in the university classroom—have provided Osama bin Laden with more than enough assurance that he is facing an enemy ripe for slaughter on a scale never before seen.

Hillary's The Obliterator In Chief

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Hillary Clinton

AS PENNSYLVANIA VOTERS go to the polls in a primary widely regarded as do-or-die for Senator Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, the New York Democrat apparently is positioning herself to the right of some Republicans, vowing that if Iran attacks Israel with nuclear weapons, she would respond in kind against Tehran, with the ability to "totally obliterate them."

Would she, or won't she? Only her hairdresser knows for sure. Clinton's remarks came during an interview airing tomorrow morning on the ABC News show, Good Morning America. ABC's Chris Cuomo asked Clinton what she would do if Iran attacked Israel with nuclear weapons, according to the network. "I want the Iranians to know that if I'm the president we will attack Iran," Clinton said. "In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them."

Aim big, but level a soft kick at the groin, just to get their attention. That's what many of us think about Hillary's commitment to defending Israel and America from this menace called Ahmadinejad's Mahdi. That poor fellow Ahmadinejad has been blustering for so long, his chin is dragging across his soup most of the time these days, but if he were to manage to finally go nuclear, there is little doubt he would immediately seek to create all that chaos that he believes his mysterious Mahdi requires for making that next appearance.

But somehow I believe her affinity for the button more than I believe Barack Obama in his earlier threatening words to Pakistan. Obama will opt for the jizya tactic. More bribery money to the troublemakers. That's his ticket. Bah, humbug. Stop all US payments to these crouching leopards, and while you are at it, why don't you show your toughness by being tough at home, and help police and eradicate the roving thugs already terrorizing our own urban and suburban neighborhoods throughout the nation...

Truman And The Bomb

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Harry S. Truman

Shall we discuss Harry S. Truman and the bomb? Revisionism seems to know no bounds these days. Much has been made lately by such people as Lyndon La Rouche, the Oddly Named Truthers, and certain other bleeding heart cartels about the nature of the lead-up to President Harry S. Truman's use of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The lack of and the twisting of historical knowledge almost amazes me. People chatter about the decision to use the A-bombs as if Japan was just minding its own business and the evil USA suddenly decided to drop the bombs on them for no reason. WELL, THAT AINT ZACTLY THE WAY IT HAPPENED! Japan had been attacking China since 1937, and featured such atrocities as the Rape of Nanking. It was for this reason that the U.S. cut off supplies such as oil to Japan. That is what "antagonized" them into attacking Pearl Harbor in 1941 (anybody still remember that?). The Japanese then declared war after the attack. Did the USA force them to do that as well?

And as far the caveat of knowing about the attack ahead of time, an attack was suspected, but just as in the case of September 11, there was no specific beat on what kind of attack to expect. "Experts" predicted one by submarines or sabotage, not by air (Sorry, Pearl Harbor Truthers). Once the war in the Pacific commenced, Japanese prison camps rivaled the Nazis in brutality, and even included beheadings (sound familiar?).

Nertainly much worse than can be said about Club Gitmo. And contrary to revisionist belief, Japan was not ready to surrender as long as the Emperor was protected. That was the view of a few pragmatic politicians. The vast majority of the government and populace were ready to fight to the end, and were arming themselves for such. Estimates run that an invasion would have cost anywhere from to 10 million Japanese lives, and extended the war by several years.

After suffering the devastating bombs, some Japanese military officers tried to stop the Emperor from making the surrender announcment. And after finding old Japanese soldiers still hiding in the jungles of isolated islands, who refused to surrender, this seemed to have been part of the early indoctrinization process of the Japanese people. These are not the peace-loving people that Western PCers want to believe they were.

These two bombings initiated dreadful atrocities that one should vigilantly hope will never face mankind again. But so did ALL the warfare of the past century, the one before it, and the one before it, et cetera. War is hell. War kills, maims, disfigures, and disturbs. But the United States and its people continue to be labeled international monsters by the Hate America crowds when in fact it is certain of committing far less violence than what the WW2 Japanese actually was carrying out for far longer in its very active war of aggression.

Facing Down Iran Eye To Eye

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Iran's Long History

Mark Steyn writes convincingly: If we’d understood Iran back in 1979, we’d understand better the challenges we face today. Come to that, we might not even be facing them. But, with hindsight, what strikes you about the birth of the Islamic Republic is the near total lack of interest by analysts in that adjective: Islamic. Iran was only the second Islamist state, after Saudi Arabia—and, in selecting as their own qualifying adjective the family name, the House of Saud at least indicated a conventional sense of priorities, as the legions of Saudi princes whoring and gambling in the fleshpots of the West have demonstrated exhaustively. Hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue—though, as the Royal Family has belatedly discovered vis-à-vis the Islamists, they’re somewhat overdrawn on that front. The difference in Iran is simple: with the mullahs, there are no London escort agencies on retainer to supply blondes only. When they say “Islamic Republic,” they mean it. And refusing to take their words at face value has bedeviled Western strategists for three decades.

Twenty-seven years ago, because Islam didn’t fit into the old cold war template, analysts mostly discounted it. We looked at the map like that Broadway marquee: West and East, the old double act. As with most of the down-page turf, Iran’s significance lay in which half of the act she’d sign on with. To the Left, the shah was a high-profile example of an unsavory U.S. client propped up on traditional he-may-be-a-sonofabitch-but-he’s-our-sonofabitch grounds: in those heady days SAVAK, his secret police, were a household name among Western progressives, and insofar as they took the stern-faced man in the turban seriously, they assured themselves he was a kind of novelty front for the urbane Paris émigré socialists who accompanied him back to Tehran. To the realpolitik Right, the issue was Soviet containment: the shah may be our sonofabitch, but he’d outlived his usefulness, and a weak Iran could prove too tempting an invitation to Moscow to fulfill the oldest of czarist dreams—a warm-water port, not to mention control of the Straits of Hormuz. Very few of us considered the strategic implications of an Islamist victory on its own terms—the notion that Iran was checking the neither-of-the-above box and that that box would prove a far greater threat to the Freeish World than Communism.

But that was always Iran’s plan. In 1989, with the Warsaw Pact disintegrating before his eyes, poor beleaguered Mikhail Gorbachev received a helpful bit of advice from the cocky young upstart on the block: “I strongly urge that in breaking down the walls of Marxist fantasies you do not fall into the prison of the West and the Great Satan,” Ayatollah Khomeini wrote to Moscow. “I openly announce that the Islamic Republic of Iran, as the greatest and most powerful base of the Islamic world, can easily help fill up the ideological vacuum of your system.”

Today many people in the West don’t take that any more seriously than Gorbachev did. But it’s pretty much come to pass. As Communism retreated, radical Islam seeped into Africa and south Asia and the Balkans. Crazy guys holed up in Philippine jungles and the tri-border region of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay who’d have been “Marxist fantasists” a generation or two back are now Islamists: it’s the ideology du jour. At the point of expiry of the Soviet Union in 1991, the peoples of the central Asian republics were for the most part unaware that Iran had even had an “Islamic revolution”; 15 years on, following the proselytizing of thousands of mullahs dispatched to the region by a specially created Iranian government agency, the Stans’ traditionally moderate and in many cases alcoholically lubricated form of Islam is yielding in all but the most remote areas to a fiercer form imported from the south. As the Pentagon has begun to notice, in Iraq Tehran has been quietly duplicating the strategy that delivered southern Lebanon into its control 20 years ago. The degeneration of Baby Assad’s supposedly “secular” Baathist tyranny into full-blown client status and the replacement of Arafat’s depraved “secular” kleptocrat terrorists by Hamas’s even more depraved Islamist terrorists can also be seen as symptoms of Iranification.

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New Law To Scan All Incoming Cargo

Let's hope this Congressional action doesn't go the way of the 1986 Immigration reform bill...

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Cargo Scanning At Seaports

WASHINGTON—The specter of a nuclear bomb, hidden in a cargo container, detonating in an American port has prompted Congress to require 100 percent screening of U.S.-bound ships at their more than 600 foreign starting points. The White House and shippers maintain that the technology for scanning 11 million containers each year doesn't exist, and say the requirement could disrupt trade. Current procedures including manifest inspections at foreign ports and radiation monitoring in U.S. ports are working well, they contend.

Nonetheless, President George W. Bush earlier this month signed the measure into law, praising its shift of funds to states and cities at higher risk of terrorism attack and saying he will work with lawmakers to ensure the cargo screening provisions don't impede commerce.

Scanning containers at their point of origin in other countries is a highlight of that law, intended to fulfill recommendations of the 9/11 Commission for safeguarding the United States from terrorist attack. It sets a five-year deadline for having the system in place but—recognizing the technology might not be ready—gives the Homeland Security secretary the authority to extend that deadline by two-year increments.

"If a terrorist manages to conceal a weapon of mass destruction in a shipping container, it must be discovered long before that container reaches our shore," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in support of the measure.

Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., a chief proponent, said the costs and complexity involved in the new system pale beside the devastating effect of a nuclear attack launched from a big city port. "The truth is, we cannot afford not to do it."

The White House issued a statement strongly opposing the scanning requirement, saying it was "neither executable nor feasible." Opponents warned that it could cause huge backlogs at the nation's seaports, which handle some 95 percent of goods coming into the country.

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff says "it would be wonderful" if all containers were inspected before they left foreign ports. "But it's got to be done in a way that reflects reality and also reflects the fact that we're not the only players in this pool."

Industry groups that lobbied against the 100 percent screening asked whether Congress intends to cut off trade with small-volume ports that can't install the needed technology. They also warn of foreign governments retaliating by requiring U.S. ports to set up the same inspection regimen.

"You have to have the permission of all these foreign points," said James Carafano, a defense expert at the Heritage Foundation. "There are a lot of people around the world who are going to be really teed off about this." The Bush administration argues that its current risk-based, layered approach to port security is a success. That approach has several main components:

  • Under the Container Security Initiative, teams from Customs and Border Protection now review manifests at some 50 ports covering more than 80 percent of the container cargo shipped to the United States. Containers identified as high risk are subjected to X-ray and radiation scanning. Markey argues that this is nothing more than a paperwork check that relies on descriptions of content supplied by shippers. Less than 5 percent of containers get scanned, and only a fraction of those are opened up and inspected.

  • Homeland Security, together with Customs and Border Protection, has set a goal of screening, by the end of 2007, close to 100 percent of all containers entering the country by sea for radiological and nuclear material, using what are called Radiation Portal Monitors.
  • Under a pilot program called the Secure Freight Initiative, created in a port security bill passed last year, Homeland Security is testing high-volume scanning at six ports in Pakistan, Honduras, Britain, Oman, Singapore and South Korea. The program should give some indication of the practicality of the 9/11 Act provision, which requires containers to undergo both a radiation check and a scan with nonintrusive imaging such as X-rays that might locate highly enriched uranium or other materials that don't emit a lot of radiation.

Homeland Security's Domestic Nuclear Detection Office also plans to award up to $1.2 billion over the next five years to develop and acquire a next generation radiation monitor for land and sea cargo known as Advanced Spectroscopic Portals.

Lawmakers have questioned whether the new technology offers much improvement over current monitors that are prone to false alarms set off by naturally occurring radioactive material in medical isotopes, ceramics or kitty litter.

Sen. Joseph Lieberman, I-Conn., and Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., chairmen of the Senate and House Homeland Security committees, said preliminary tests indicate the effectiveness of the new advanced monitors "may fall well short of levels anticipated."

Rep. Dan Lungren, R-Calif., a critic of the new provision, noted that those unhappy with current technology are among the same people calling for 100 percent scanning. "You can't have it both ways," he said, adding that "the technology is not there at this point."

Democrats, in successfully arguing for the scanning provision, said that if the United States could put a man on the moon within the same decade that John F. Kennedy challenged the nation to that goal, it can certainly come up with effective nuclear warning technology in five years.

Markey also disputed the contention that the new system would be too expensive, citing estimates that the cost of 100 percent scanning, including the application of tamper-proof seals, would be about $100 per container. He said that's insignificant compared with the average $66,000 value of goods shipped in each container and estimates that the cost of a disruption of U.S. port operations from a successful terrorist attack could reach $58 billion.

The Congressional Budget Office quoted a figure of $1.5 billion over three years to acquire and set up the scanning and detection equipment. The United States could provide financial aid to smaller countries, but the CBO said it expected most of the costs to be borne by foreign ports in order to maintain trade with the United States.

Among opponents of the new law is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Jason Conley, its senior manager for homeland security, said there is no really good cost estimate, but predicted that the amount of money needed to implement and operate the system, deal with false alarms and handle delays and disruptions will be very high. He said foreign governments and ports would probably pass along the costs to shippers and consumers.

But cost is not the main reason that 100 percent scanning provision is opposed by major cargo shippers and America's key trading partners, according to the World Shipping Council.

It said the new law doesn't adequately address who will buy and maintain the equipment, who will do the scanning, how the data will be analyzed, how radiation-linked health issues will be handled and what might happen when foreign governments demand that U.S. ports install similar equipment.

Markey said the technology exists, the warnings of trade disruptions are overblown and the bottom line remains the same: If a nuclear bomb reaches a U.S. port or city, it's already too late.

Teaching On Uncommon Grounds, Iran Sinks Lower

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Iran's Long History
DATELINE FEB 11, 2007. From London and elsewhere we hear that textbooks used in Iran's schools are instilling students with hatred toward the West, especially the United States, and urging them to become "martyrs" in a global holy war against countries perceived to be enemies of Islam, a new study says. An Iranian human rights activist, Ghazal Omid, praised the findings, saying they prove hard-liners in Iran are using the books to turn children into "ticking bombs."

However, an American academic who specializes in Iran and Islam, and a former Iranian teacher said they believe the textbooks are a reflection of Iran's history and its deep suspicions of the West, not an effort to turn students into terrorists. The books emphasize the teachings of the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and repeatedly refer to the United States as the "Great Satan" and to Israel as "the regime that occupies Jerusalem," said the study by the Israel-based Center for Monitoring the Impact of Peace.

Omid, who fled Iran and wrote "Living in Hell," an autobiography about her experiences there, urged changes to textbooks in Iran and elsewhere in the Middle East. "I am an Iranian, a practicing Muslim woman, who sees it as her responsibility to stand up to hard-line Muslims who use Islam to brainwash children of that faith, in particular Iranian children, who the Iranian government is turning into ticking bombs," she said.

Omid, who lives in Canada, spoke at a news conference in London on Wednesday with study author Aron Groiss, director of research at the Center for Monitoring the Impact of Peace. Calls to Iranian officials for comment were not immediately answered.

The study analyzed 95 textbooks and 20 teacher's guides used at Iran's state-run schools. Groiss said the curriculum "reflects Iran's belligerent intentions which should sound the alarm to anyone who is committed to peace and stability in the world."

The study noted, however, that Western culture "is not rejected in principle" in the books and that the attitude to other religions is generally "not hostile." The books include discussion sections on respecting other religions and don't say people should be forced to convert to Islam.

Textbooks used in Iranian elementary schools included stories and poems that hailed martyrs such as those who died in the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war, Groiss said. Another picture book for 10-year-olds provides a basic acquaintance with weaponry, explosives and military tactics, he said.

The study quotes one passage from a book for 10th graders as saying: "During the eight years of Holy Defense (the Iran-Iraq war), more than 500,000 school students were sent to the fronts. 36,000 martyrs, thousands of missing-in-action, invalids and liberated (prisoners of war) of this sacrificing section were offered to the Islamic Revolution."

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Iranian Comforters
A passage from a book for eighth graders says God gives "eternal Paradise to anyone who becomes a martyr in the cause of God. He considers martyrdom a great victory."

The United States is referred to as the "Great Satan," the "World Devourer" and the "Arrogant One" in the books, and Israel is shown on maps as "Occupied Palestine."

The study is the latest to call for textbook reform in the Islamic world. Such efforts are under way or planned in Egypt, Jordan and Kuwait to remove slurs against non-Muslims or promotions of extremism and terrorism. Israeli textbooks have undergone revisions since the 1990s to remove anti-Arab bias and present a more balanced account of Palestinian views and aspirations.

A fellow named David England responds to these characterizations of Islam on Jihad Watch:

Ms. Shireen T. Hunter is a specialist in misunderstanding. Her thesis or claim that "In some ways, they simply reflect the deep distrust of Third World countries about the policies and motivations of the great powers, which they see as neocolonialist" gets an "F." As if the religious rulers of Iran do not hang people in public and send weapons to Iraq and Lebanon and elsewhere about the globe in the colonialization by Iranian Islam of the Middle East. Moreover, I suspect that the professors who taught her to spin this crap in her doctoral thesis and later on as a respected member of the Academy of Dhimmi also deserve Fs as well and to be thrown out of Academia for gross incompetence and gross ignorance.

Iran was "de- colonialized" from England after World War II and was very little affected over the last 1000 year history by the United Kingdom during its Islamic period. England shares little of Iran's values or culture.

The birth of one baby in the United States of America puts 100 times more pressure on the Earth's resources, and on the natural environment, than the birth of a baby in Bangladesh. Because the living of one American individual is linked to the consumption of more food and clothing, the possession of a private car, more communication and transportation, and the generation of more refuse and pollution, while the lifestyle in Bangladesh is such that it does not require great quantities of mineral resources and energy.
The learned doctor also overlooks the affect of political Islam on British society today. She appears deeply ignorant of the Moslem invasion of the West. She mouths platitudes about history that are ill conceived and ill expressed.

She also has apparently never read the Khomeini (may God find a suitable punishment for the man) who is sickeningly clear in his 1981 speech to celebrate the birth of Mohammed (may God find a suitable punishment) about his motivation and the motivation of the current nation of Iran that the Mullahs set up:

"The real Day of God is the day that Amir al mo’menin drew his sword and slaughtered all the khavarej and killed them from the first to the last. The Days of God are when Allah, the gracious, the almighty, causes an earthquake. It is when He slaps on the face. It is when he causes a hurricane. He whips this people to become humans. If the Amir al mo’menin wanted to be tolerant, he would not have drawn his sword killing 700 people in one go In our prisons we have more of the same kind of people who are corrupt. If we do not kill them, each one of them that gets out, will become a murderer! They don’t become humans. Why do you Mullahs only go after the ordinances of prayer and fasting? Why do you only read the Quranic verses of mercy and do not read the verses of killing? Quran says; kill, imprison!

"Why are you only clinging to the part that talks about mercy? Mercy is against God. Mehrab means the place of war, the place of fighting. Out of the mehrabs, wars should proceed, Just as all the wars of Islam used to proceeded out of the mehrabs. The prophet has [had] sword to kill people...

"Our [Holy] Imams were quite military men. All of them were warriors. They used to wield swords; they used to kill people. We need a Khalifa who would chop hands, cut throat, stone people. In the same way that the messenger of God used to chop hands, cut throats, and stone people. In the same way that he massacred the Jews of Bani Qurayza because they were a bunch of discontent people. If the Prophet used to order to burn a house or exterminate a tribe that was justice. The lives of people must be secured through punishment. Because, the protection of the masses lies beneath these very punitive executions. With just a few years of imprisonment things aren't rectified. You must put aside these childish sentimentalism. We believe that the accused essentially does not have to be tried. He or she must just be killed. Only their identity is to be established and then they should be killed."

"One American family has an impact on the natural environment 40 times more than an Indian family, and 100 times more than a Kenyan family."

The author of such riveting masterpieces is Ayatollah Khomeini, and echoed by adherants in the mosques and headlines all across the globe. A religion of death and misery landing straight on the backs of the children. Here are a few excerpts from some Iranian textbooks:

8th grade
"Exalted God orders the Believers in many verses in the Holy Koran to fight the Jihad in the cause of God and kill the oppressors. He gives the glad tidings of forgiveness and eternal Paradise to anyone who becomes a martyr in the cause of God. He considers martyrdom a great victory."

10th grade
"The birth of one baby in the United States of America puts 100 times more pressure on the Earth's resources, and on the natural environment, than the birth of a baby in Bangladesh. Because the living of one American individual is linked to the consumption of more food and clothing, the possession of a private car, more communication and transportation, and the generation of more refuse and pollution, while the lifestyle in Bangladesh is such that it does not require great quantities of mineral resources and energy.

11th grade
"O Muslims of all countries of the world! Since under the foreigners’ dominance gradual death has been inflicted on you, you should overcome the fear of death and make use of the existence of the passionate and the martyrdom-seeking youths, who are ready to smash the borders of unbelief. Do not think of keeping the status quo. Rather, think of escape from captivity, of deliverance from slavery, and of attack against the enemies of Islam. Glory and life are in fighting, and the first step of fighting is [the existence of] will. After that, there is the decision that you forbid yourselves to [submit to] the supremacy of world unbelief and polytheism, especially America."

So instead of working hard in building up nations, including Muslim lands and peoples, the Mullahs prefer to destroy the planet in the greatest threat to planetary life in written human history.

China In The Sky With Bombs

Chinese Missiles
Chinese Missiles
First impressions are all over the board, but generally the idea that although China offers no present threat, the fear is that if there were a stand-off over Taiwan, the Chinese might be tempted by the option of destroying US satellites. Worry is also being expressed by China's near neighbors, Japan and South Korea.

Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister, has stated the Japanese position that all nations must use space for peace.

Alexander Downer, the Australian foreign minister, while visiting New York, said Beijing's ambassador to Australia, Fu Ying, had been called in for an explanation with concern that to have a capacity to shoot down satellites in outer space is not consistent with the traditional Chinese position of opposition to the militarization of outer space.

China is militarily weaker than many people think, especially compared to the United States. This, despite lots of showy jet prototypes and plenty of other factory-fresh equipment. But Beijing has a brutally simple—if risky—plan to compensate for this relative weakness: buy missiles. And then, buy more of them. All kinds of missiles: short-range and long-range; land-based, air-launched and sea-launched; ballistic and cruise; guided and “dumb.”

Those are the two striking themes that emerge from Chinese Aerospace Power, a new collection of essays edited by Andrew Erickson, an influential China analyst with the U.S. Naval War College.

Today, the PLA possesses as many as 2,000 non-nuclear ballistic and cruise missiles, according to Chinese Aerospace Power. This “growing arsenal of increasingly accurate and lethal conventional ballistic and land-attack cruise missiles has rapidly emerged as a cornerstone of PLA warfighting capability,” Mark Stokes and Ian Easton wrote. For every category of weaponry where the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) lags behind the Pentagon, there’s a Chinese missile to help make up the difference.

The need is clear. Despite introducing a wide range of new hardware in recent years, including jet fighters, helicopters, destroyers, submarines and a refurbished Russian aircraft carrier, China still lacks many of the basic systems, organizations and procedures necessary to defeat a determined, well-equipped foe. Take, for example, aerial refueling. To deploy large numbers of effective aerial tankers requires the ability to build and support large jet engines—something China cannot yet do. In-air refueling also demands planning and coordination beyond anything the PLA has ever pulled off. As a result, “tanker aircraft are in short supply” in the PLA, Wayne Ulman explained.

That’s putting it lightly. According to Chinese Aerospace Power, the entire PLA operates just 14 H-6U tankers, each carrying 17,000 kilograms of off-loadable fuel. (The U.S. Air Force alone possesses more than 500 tankers, each off-loading around 100,000 kilograms of fuel.) So while the PLA in theory boasts more than 1,500 jet fighters, in reality it can refuel only 50 or 60 at a time, assuming all the H-6 tankers are working perfectly. In an air war over Taiwan, hundreds of miles from most Chinese bases, only those 50 fighters would be able to spend more than a few minutes’ flight time over the battlefield. Factoring in tankers, China’s 4–1 advantage in jet fighters compared to Taiwan actually shrinks to a roughly 7&ndash1 disadvantage. The gap only grows when you add U.S. fighters to the mix.

The PLA’s solution? Missiles, of course. Up to a thousand ballistic and cruise missiles, most of them fired by land-based launchers, “would likely comprise the initial strike” against Taiwan or U.S. Pacific bases, Ulman wrote. The goal would be to take out as many of an opponent’s aircraft as possible before the dogfighting even begins.

The PLA could take a similar approach to leveling its current disadvantage at sea. Submarines have always been the most potent ship-killers in any nation’s inventory, but China’s subs are too few, too noisy and their crews too inexperienced to take on the U.S. Navy. Once the shooting started, the “Chinese submarine force would be highly vulnerable,” Jeff Hagen predicted.

And forget using jet fighters armed with short-range weapons to attack the American navy. One Chinese analyst referenced in Chinese Aerospace Power estimated it would take between 150 and 200 Su-27-class fighters to destroy one U.S. Ticonderoga-class cruiser. The entire PLA operates only around 300 Su-27s and derivatives. The U.S. Navy has 22 Ticonderoga cruisers.

Again, missiles would compensate. A “supersaturation” attack by scores or hundreds of ballistic missiles has the potential of “instantly rendering the Ticonderoga‘s air defenses useless,” Toshi Yoshihara wrote. Close to shore, China could use the older, less-precise, shorter-range missiles it already possesses in abundance. For longer-range strikes, the PLA is developing the DF-21D “carrier-killer” missile that uses satellites and aerial drones for precision targeting.

The downside to China’s missile-centric strategy is that it could represent a “single point of failure.” Over-relying on one weapon could render the PLA highly vulnerable to one kind of countermeasure. In this case, that’s the Pentagon’s anti-ballistic-missile systems, including warships carrying SM-3 missiles and land-based U.S. Army Patriot and Terminal High-Altitude Air-Defense batteries.

Plus, missiles are one-shot weapons. You don’t get to reuse them the way you would a jet fighter or a destroyer. That means, in wartime, China has to win fast—or lose. “China’s entire inventory of conventional ballistic missiles, for example, could deliver about a thousand tons of high explosives on their targets,” Roger Cliff explained. “The U.S. Air Force’s aircraft, by comparison, could deliver several times that amount of high explosives every day for an indefinite period.”