Belmont Club


Why do people still expect us to lose in Iraq? Because they themselves can't imagine victory. Yet the Belmont Club outlines exactly what victory looks like:

By the time the uprising was over, silenced in a cease-fire June 4, the U.S. military success appeared decisive. While 19 U.S. soldiers had been killed in combat and scores wounded, military officials estimate that 1,500 insurgents were killed. Sadr's militiamen had been driven from positions many had died defending.
The US estimates that 20 civilians were killed in operations around Najaf. The Najaf hospital claims 81. When the Russians retook Grozny after a disastrous first foray, they returned to the operational formula of Marshak Konev in Berlin and rained down 8,000 artillery shells per hour on the town, killing perhaps 27,000 before attempting it again. The vastly more powerful Americans did not, yet triumphed. They are inept, as everyone knows.
Indeed, it does seem that people believe this. American 'heavyhandedness' is said to have turned Iraq into a "terrorist-breeding hellhole." Yet, when our enemies slaughter civilians in multitudes, with car-bombs aimed at the innocent, we are told that this too moves the world against us. If we kill the innocent, people turn to terrorism to get back at us. If our enemies kill the innocent, people turn to terrorism--why, exactly?

The truth is otherwise than what is reported. Heavyhandness does not belong to America, but to our foes. Victory will be ours, because we merit it. In the end, mercy is a quality that moves hearts. It will be recognized among those who suffer from the bombs, even if it is not recognized among those who have never, themselves, looked death in the face.

Allah Is In The House

Allah Be Praised:

Allah is back on top of his game. "Whoa, Solider! Let's not turn our enemies into enemies!" A 5.56mm NATO is a .223 Remington to me... well, almost. Bring on the Jew rounds!

Althouse: Gore and "brownshirts."

Wolfe Rides Again:

Apparently Ann Althouse had the same thought as me, about nine hours earlier. Great minds, etc. Via Sage of Knoxville, who said earlier this week that he was less likely to link to blogs that "call him names." This one was intended as a compliment--my family is from Knoxville, although I myself was born in Georgia, and raised just over the border in the North Georgia mountains.


"Digital Brownshirts?"

I've just heard from friend-of-the-Hall Jarhead Dad, who is back from a long run. He put me on to this story from Al Gore's recent speech, which I'm citing from Wizbang:

The Administration works closely with a network of "rapid response" digital Brown Shirts...
Now of course when you hear "Brown Shirts" you think at once of Hitler's loyal followers from the early days of Nazism, the ones he had killed at the Night of the Long Knives. Gore would, on first face, appear to be comparing pro-administration bloggers and followers-of-blogs with this bunch of fascists.

But then, after a moment, I remembered the story about Naomi Wolfe...

By contrast, Gore's way is not to be chummy but not to be petty either. He has never held it against Time magazine for breaking a story about his hiring of author Naomi Wolfe as a secret adviser... Air Gore was a grumpy place, and the alpha male in earth tones with his earnest town-hall meetings couldn't catch a break for much of the campaign.
So you see, Gore isn't being petty. He's just trying to offer you a compliment, in his awkward sort of way. Brown shirts are, of course, earth tones: exactly the sort of clothes he's heard that "alpha men" wear.

I Don't Like the "New Freedom"

"The New Freedom":

The worst domestic political idea since socialism has appeared today, direct from the desk of President Bush. It is called "The New Freedom Initiative". And just what is "the New Freedom"?

President Bush plans to unveil next month a sweeping mental health initiative that recommends screening for every citizen and promotes the use of expensive antidepressants and antipsychotic drugs favored by supporters of the administration.
The New Freedom, then, is the freedom to submit yourself for regular evaluations from pseudoscientists who have a vested interest in proving that you are sick. The New Freedom is the freedom to accept that it is normal to be on mind-altering drugs. The New Freedom includes, doubtless, increased state freedom to drug persons it finds unpleasant or difficult--little boys in school, for example. Or "conservatives," perhaps. Or liberals.

The New Freedom probably also includes less individual freedom to refuse such treatments. We have seen that the state has already begun to force us to drug our children, under threat of jail or having our kids stolen.
Chad Taylor of Rio Rancho, N.M., suspected that his son Daniel was suffering side effects from Ritalin, a drug he was taking for attention deficit disorder:

"He was losing weight, wasn't sleeping, wasn't eating," Taylor told ABC News affiliate KOAT-TV in New Mexico. "[He] just wasn't Daniel."

"So Taylor took Daniel off Ritalin, against his doctor's wishes. And though Taylor noticed Daniel was sleeping better and his appetite had returned, his teachers complained about the return of his disruptive behavior. Daniel seemed unable to sit still and was inattentive. His teachers ultimately learned that he was no longer taking Ritalin. School officials reported Daniel's parents to New Mexico's Department of Children, Youth and Families.Then a detective and social worker made a home visit. 'The detective told me if I did not medicate my son, I would be arrested for child abuse and neglect,' Taylor said. A spokesman for New Mexico's Department of Children, Youth and Families told KOAT-TV that they could not comment on the case because of state confidentiality laws. John Francis, a detective for the Rio Rancho Department of Public Safety, said that Taylor was not threatened but told KOAT-TV that parents could be charged in situations like his."

The Rio Rancho schools have frequently appeared in our "Zero-Tolerance Watch" series. Threatening to jail a father for refusing to give his child behavior-modification drugs, though, seems particularly outrageous--a far bigger threat to the average American's liberty than anything in the Patriot Act.

I don't like the New Freedom. I prefer the Old Freedom. The freedom where we are free men gifted with the minds our Creator made for us, rather than the ones "psychologists" would prefer we have.

Free minds, which we may hone, like swords, in the way we desire.

Free minds, which may choose to love our children as they are, and refuse to let the state drug them.

Free minds, who can decide when the government has finally betrayed us, our liberty, and the Republic.

Caveant, Consules, Ne Quid Detrimenti Respublica Capiat.

Bangkok Post --- News & Archive

Guns In Thailand:

As some of you may know, the last few months have seen an upsurge in religious violence in Southern Thailand. It will not surprise you to discover that the leaders of this violence are Muslims decrying the impossibility of living under a non-Muslim state. The favored victims of these heroes of jihad, it will be equally unsurprising to learn, are teachers, elderly Buddhists (one of whom was beheaded recently), and the unarmed. Just for safety's sake, however, the assailants seem to prefer to speed by on motorcycles as they spray bullets or swing machetes at these teachers and old folks.

The Thai government has tried a number of things to placate them. They have promised a major economic initiative to enrich the south and improve standards of living. They tried to print a booklet of Koranic verses that spoke to peace and the need to obey lawful authority, but the Muslim leadership in Thailand threw a fit. Excerpting the Koran--which is said to be the actual word of God, merely recited by Mohammed--is almost as bad as translating it. In either case, you are taking the perfect word of God and altering it. The clerics argued that even printing excerpts of the Koran counted as "interpreting" Islam, and that the government (largely Buddhist) had no business doing it.

So they did not. Instead, they printed a pamphlet challenging a book that the Islamist leaders had written. They also asked southern Thai Muslim clerics to rule on whether or not the book urging jihad was proper. The clerics ruled that, while the book was not proper, the government's response was worse; and so they ordered the government's pamphlets destroyed.

The Thai government took even this in a stride, and is now working to have the clerics write a response of their own. In the meanwhile, the murders go on.

Teachers in Thailand, underwhelmed by their government's efforts on their behalf, are doing what all wise men do. They are arming themselves. This has caused some alarm among the journalistic elite of Thailand, which has begun printing editorials opposed to the notion. These trot out every old canard against the private possession of arms.

'A pistol is no use against a drive-by shooting.' (Well, but what about the fellows with machetes? And what if they miss? You could always return the fire.)

'Teachers are untrained in the use of arms, and so would be easy prey for militants who just wanted more arms.' (Not so easy prey as they are now. I expect we'll see shortly which the militants prefer--unarmed victims, or the chance of winning a pistol at the risk of their neck.)

"It is the task of the state to ensure ordinary people's safety. It should not be left to the individual to arm and defend himself." (Exactly wrong. The free citizen has both the right and the duty to protect the common peace. Indeed, it cannot be otherwise protected.)

'Pistols are an expensive luxury for Thai teachers, who must live on 10,000 baht a month.'

OK. That last one makes sense. Fortunately, help is on the way:

Gun shops in Bangkok are offering discounts to teachers in Thailand's troubled Muslim south where a spate of almost daily attacks show no signs of abating despite government promises to restore peace.

Schools have been common targets for arson and gun attacks, leading to teachers being given permission to apply for licences for firearms for self-defence.

Several Bangkok gunsmiths have appointed teachers as salespeople to lure potential customers to the capital with promises of discounts, said Pairat Vihakarat, who heads a teachers union with 20,000 members in five southern provinces. "A colleague of mine told me he would rather carry a gun than have 20 friends go about with him. Everyone can equally be killed here," Pairat said.

Hundreds of teachers and civil servants from the southern provinces have been lured by discount offers from gun shops in the capital.

Maybe we should start a "Guns for Thai Teachers" fund. The way to beat Islamist terrorism is through the resolute individual. Those who will not be bowed, who will not be terrorized, are the hope of civilization and the very road to Victory.


'Just Doing Our Job':

The 24th Marine Regiment issues some awards and commendations. Be sure to read about the corpsman, Cinelli, who proves again why Marines love these squids as well as if the corpsmen wore the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor themselves.