Soldier Uses Koran For Target Practice

An update on U.S. efforts to win the hearts and minds of Iraqis:

The commander of United States troops in Baghdad asked local leaders and tribal sheiks this weekend for their forgiveness after the discovery that a soldier had used a Koran for target practice at a shooting range.

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    Should have never happened (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by thentro on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:14:02 PM EST
    because we should have never been there in the first place.

    You are so right (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by bjorn on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:33:56 PM EST
    Every time something like this happens Bush should have to accept whatever discipline is given to the soldier.  And Cheney too!

    now (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Kathy on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:34:46 PM EST
    that I think we can all agree with.

    Actually, you have just (none / 0) (#23)
    by JavaCityPal on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:12:27 PM EST
    described exactly the way the Muslims feel about that.

    If a National and an Ex-Pat have a car accident, it is automatically the Ex-Pat's fault for that very reason. If they had not been in the country, the accident never would have happened.


    I assume you (1.00 / 0) (#56)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 09:10:53 AM EST
    agree with this logic for any illegal alien and all legal visitors in the US.

    And if you don't, why do you think it is acceptable in SA and other ME countries??


    outsiders (none / 0) (#28)
    by thentro on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:36:34 PM EST
    Considering how normal a car crash is compared to a large scale military invasion, it really hammers home the point that our presence in Iraq is not doing any good. We might be used by one side, or the other - but in the end the Americans are the outsiders and will be rejected.

    Without question (none / 0) (#30)
    by JavaCityPal on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:40:20 PM EST
    that is exactly the way it is.

    I say the (none / 0) (#49)
    by Wile ECoyote on Mon May 19, 2008 at 05:17:05 AM EST
    same thing about drunk driving accidents.

    So?? (1.00 / 1) (#6)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:01:34 PM EST
    Instead of groveling we should have just said that it shouldn't have happened but was better than using a couple of captured terrorists.

    I think the American public is past tired of Muslims being offended every 15 seconds.

    Jim... (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by TomStewart on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:10:48 PM EST
    I think the American public is tired of being so deep in an unnecessary war they can't see the way out.

    What the soldier did was wrong, and he and his commanding officers should be reprimanded. And the fact you think apologizing is 'groveling and suggest 'it was better than using a couple of captured terrorists' shows that you don't really get it.


    Read my reply to kredwyn, above (1.00 / 0) (#54)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 09:00:51 AM EST
    I'm tired.... (none / 0) (#59)
    by kdog on Mon May 19, 2008 at 10:57:09 AM EST
    of both...the criminal, immoral occupation and the fragile sensibilities of some muslims.  

    Shooting up the Koran is disrespectful and obviously uncool, but if it wasn't that the Allah-patrol would be ranting about a cartoon in the paper or what somebody named their teddy bear.  I have no patience for people all worked up over superstition.  For such an intolerant brood, they sure expect everybody else to walk on eggshells.  


    Nicely said. (1.00 / 0) (#68)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 12:58:06 PM EST
    Nice to see ya around old pal.... (none / 0) (#75)
    by kdog on Mon May 19, 2008 at 02:29:19 PM EST
    the place is a bit of a bore without you.

    One can only read about how Hillary is the Virgin Mary and Obama the Prince of Darkness for so long:)


    I'm sure BTD will be along soon (none / 0) (#76)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon May 19, 2008 at 02:45:59 PM EST
    chastise you for your sexist and racist remarks.

    Yeah man.... (none / 0) (#77)
    by kdog on Mon May 19, 2008 at 03:13:36 PM EST
    I forgot, I'm the prince of darkness:)

    Come see me at my house! (none / 0) (#81)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 04:37:35 PM EST
    Groveling? (5.00 / 0) (#47)
    by squeaky on Mon May 19, 2008 at 02:28:58 AM EST
    I think you are confused. The people groveling were the prisoners at Abu Ghraib. But I guess you thought that was just pron.

    hehe (1.00 / 0) (#55)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 09:07:50 AM EST
    You seem to forget that it was our military, which is an extension of our culture, that investigated, indicted, tried and convicted the wrong doings.

    Maybe I'm being obtuse... (none / 0) (#11)
    by Addison on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:16:53 PM EST
    ...but I don't quite understand what you're getting at.

    If you can't understand that (1.00 / 0) (#52)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 08:32:56 AM EST
    then there is nothing I can add.

    I don't believe (none / 0) (#15)
    by Nadai on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:29:29 PM EST
    you're the one being obtuse.

    next they'll start advocating the death penalty (none / 0) (#17)
    by Kathy on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:33:59 PM EST
    seriously, am I the only one thinking some republicans are trying to have some fun here tonight?

    So you'd be okay if someone (none / 0) (#19)
    by kredwyn on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:02:59 PM EST
    used the Bible for target practice? How 'bout the Torah? The Constitution? The Bill of Rights?

    There are some things you don't do just for the "fun of it."

    And what you miss is that every frackin' incident like this messes with the relations between our troops and the local community. And that can have an adverse effect on something else that might get my best friend's son hurt or my other friend's brother in law...or someone you know.

    Actions have consequences.


    Wouldn't bother me a bit. (1.00 / 1) (#53)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 08:59:35 AM EST
    Of course I'm a product of a culture that taught me that it is the "content" of those documents that is important and not the physical document.

    And yes, I understand that the radical Muslims will made a deal out of this. But if the Islamic world is to come into the 21st Century someone has to tell them to get over and get on with things. Rioting over cartoons, over shooting/dissing the Koran, stoning women who are accused of being unfaithful, killing daughters who spoken to a non-family member, hanging women who caused a man to rape her, hanging gays, etc., etc.
    are things that deserve no respect. Yet the actions are founded in the culture that basis such actions on some interpretation of the Koran that a radical then uses.

    By condemning the soldier's actions you are agreeing with and enabling the radicals actions.







    I have many more examples if you like to read them.

    And of course the bottom line is that such a culture is not producing people that can assimilate into the western world. If we are to avoid a century of war and some horrible things, the Muslim world must change.


    No... (5.00 / 0) (#62)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 11:53:24 AM EST
    by expecting our soldiers to adhere to the rules, which include not messing around with the cultural mores of the people they are dealing with, I am hoping that they don't add more fuel to an already volatile situation that may get my kid (I've known him since he was 2) dead.

    Here...read this... (5.00 / 0) (#64)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 12:25:06 PM EST
    Link. Read it all the way to the end and the final paragraph:
    Thirty years later, I still wonder what happened to those kids. Did they ever take up arms against the soldiers that had come to protect them? What about the other 300 men that had been arrested? Did they all have 11 kids? Were there now over 3,000 more potential terrorists?

    These soldiers went into neighborhoods that just a year or so before had been friendly to the troops.

    When you add enough fuel to a burning fire, you sometimes wind up with an even bigger mess than you had when you started.

    You give me random links about random stories of horrific stuff done in the name of religion. And you bring up stuff that has been used by the extremes to continue adding fuel to that same fire.

    What you're ignoring is that our kids are smack in the middle of that fire. And yeah...they're trained to take care of themselves.

    You don't "appease" or "enable." But you certainly don't do stooopid shyte to assist the other side continue to paint you as "teh evil."


    My point was (1.00 / 0) (#67)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 12:57:28 PM EST
    and remains that the reactions of the Muslim world to certain things must change if we are to have peace. It is time to tell them that in no uncertain terms.

    I repeat. Kowtowing to such things enables the radicals by making it appear that we agree that honor killings, rioting over cartoons, etc. is a valid cultural norm.

    I gave you links that demonstrate the results of Sharia law and the culture that now exists in some places. If you want to ignore the facts there is nothing I can do.


    Additionally... (5.00 / 0) (#72)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 01:27:36 PM EST
    When you are in the middle of a tinderbox situation that has military, economic, and political stuff all going on at the same time--like Iraq?

    Message control is key.

    When some of your troops go off and do really stupid stuff...like shooting up the Koran...like raping 14 year old girls, you lose control of the message.

    And in terms of getting the bigger job done so you and your troops can head home at some point in the foreseeable future?

    Losing control of your message is a bad thing.


    Why did I know (1.00 / 1) (#80)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 04:33:25 PM EST
    that you would bring up a totally off subject attack on the troops?

    I knew because I knew you couldn't resist. And since you couldn't win the argument you try and reframe it.

    Obviously rape is a crime that should not be tolerated and should be punished.

    Would that be 60 lashes on the man and hanging the girl, or 100 lashes and hanging the girl.

    (Sarcasm alert)


    Look... (5.00 / 0) (#83)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 05:59:34 PM EST
    I am an equal opportunity "don't do stupid crap" person.

    And you're completely ignored every other part of this discussion (including my earlier statements re: having friends, family, and others currently serving in both Iraq and Afghanistan)in favor of your particular POV.

    So consider me shocked that you really are more interested in the Talking Points than anything else.

    Am done here...


    BTW... (5.00 / 0) (#87)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 07:08:38 PM EST
    You totally missed my point on message control in this discussion.

    Tell me...was that on purpose?

    Or are you really not thinking about the bigger picture that many of us who do our work in conflict analysis and resolution situations have to think about?


    And you missed my point (1.00 / 0) (#91)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 07:21:25 AM EST
    when I noted that we need to be telling the Muslim world to get over and get on with things.

    You do that by NOT apologizing for the soldier's actions in shooting at a book.

    You do that by punishing the rape of a female/male of any age.

    That you have friends/family in theater is of no consequence beyond an understandable basis for bias that clouds your judgment.


    No...I got your point... (5.00 / 0) (#94)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 09:22:41 AM EST
    And good luck with that.

    It worked very well in Northern Ireland...but that took about 3 decades. And considering the tensions I saw written on the wall as I was watching "No Reservations" last night, the tensions aren't exactly over...regardless of how it's reported in the news.

    So I'd say that "Deal with it" isn't exactly a solid strategy...nor is it part of the Rules of Engagement.

    Here's the problem. To you--it's just a book. To a couple million other people (most of whom are non-militant), it's a foundational document.


    heh (none / 0) (#102)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 10:15:33 PM EST
    To you--it's just a book. To a couple million other people (most of whom are non-militant), it's a foundational document.

    I understand that.

    And as long as you let them believe that you give the radicals power.


    Let? (none / 0) (#106)
    by kredwyn on Wed May 21, 2008 at 01:54:10 AM EST
    Uh...that's quite a control complex you've got going on there...

    How exactly are you planning on convincing these millions of folks of the errors of their beliefs?

    Are you planning on doing that with every religious belief? Or just the one you think is the most dangerous at this point in time?

    Tell me...have you ever driven a cab in Belfast?

    Cause you sound a lot like this cabbie I had who told me that the only problem with the Nationalists was that they were Catholic...and if only they'd give up being Catholic, then everyone could live happily ever after in Ulster.


    Heh (1.00 / 0) (#117)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu May 22, 2008 at 02:03:44 PM EST
    You seem to have this belief the Irish problem is the same as the Muslim terrorists.

    It isn't. Comparing the two is just plain dumb.


    My point is (none / 0) (#71)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 01:19:25 PM EST
    that you have to deal with the people surrounding your base.

    Pissing them off by doing stupid stuff really doesn't go far in making sure that your base can get along with the people (probably mostly just folks who aren't interested in being turned into extremists but also between a rock and a hard place) currently living around you.

    I did read your links.

    Apparently you didn't read mine.

    That community I cited in the quote?

    Falls Road, Belfast.

    The potential terrorists that soldier was referring to?

    The IRA.

    The 30 years he was talking about? In my research field (aka Northern Ireland)...we refer to that time frame as "The Troubles."

    Maybe you've heard of it?

    There were and are lessons to be learned from that situation. Some of them...we're relearning--again...in Iraq and Afghanistan.


    Sometimes doing the right thing is (1.00 / 0) (#79)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 04:29:19 PM EST

    But that doesn't change it from being right.

    Islam is not going to absent some external push.

    And unless we get it changed, big problems are coming. See Europe.


    The right thing to do... (none / 0) (#84)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 06:04:55 PM EST
    is to not use the Koran as target practice.

    If I'm not mistaken, there's probably something about it in the rules of engagement.

    I personally am not interested in "getting rid of" Islam...or any other religion for that matter. And indeed, I'm fairly certain that wiping out the religion is not part of the rules of engagement.


    As long as Islam isn't providing (1.00 / 0) (#93)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 09:12:02 AM EST
    the world with a steady source of terrorists there is no problem.

    But currently there is a steady source of terrorists and they are not interested in living in peace and harmony.

    When we act as if their reasons for rioting, hanging, stoning, daughter killing, etc., are rational and deserve respect we are enabling them and demonstrating to the general Muslim population that the terrorists have power and are right.

    That is no way to win a war.


    You don't stop a war... (5.00 / 0) (#95)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 09:36:21 AM EST
    and you don't attain peace by shooting up a revered document either.

    You've basically shown a host of people, ones who think the book is important, that you have no respect for them.

    For crying out loud...in that one act, that kid undid tons of diplomatic and political efforts to the point where POTUS had to call up the Iraqi PM and apologize.

    Generally, that's considered not good.

    But you seem more interested in layering your own ideology onto others than you do actually engaging in ending the war.

    BTW...terrorism is always going to be around. You can't fight an idea. You can try to mitigate the circumstances that allow the idea of terrorism to take root and flourish.

    I'd suggest you read the book "On Terrorism" by Bruce Hoffman as well as the works of Dennis Sandole to get a better idea of what we're up against...what we've been up against for centuries (re: terrorism).


    The issue is not in stopping a war. (1.00 / 0) (#96)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 10:14:43 AM EST
    The issue is in winning a war.

    But I doubt you see the difference. So let me explain, again.

    By accepting the various reactions of the Muslim world to mostly nonsensical actions/situations you tell them that it is okay to... are you ready???...kill gays, riot over cartoons, stab movie producers, kill daughters, hang rape victims, stone women, etc., etc. you enable the terrorists and radicals.

    You can STOP the war by accepting the above as part of the "culture." You can WIN the war by not accepting unreasonable actions.

    So yes, I am interested in seeing the ME accept western values and becoming westernized, including the elimination of theocracies and "religious courts." If we don't that then sooner or later we will be faced with some very nasty situations.

    That Bush has made numerous mistakes in the WOT seems to be a widely held belief in the Leftie world. I find it humorous that you lock on to this one.

    You also didn't note where I mentioned "content" versus the a "document." That is a wide chasm between the Muslim world and the western world. There is no middle ground.

    You "terrorism forever" is merely an excuse for not engaging and destroying it.

    And no, I don't need to read books justifying doing nothing.

    BTW - This is the end result of not defending western values and western culture. And just think. This didn't happen in Syria, or Egypt, it happened in the Netherlands.


    Ummm... (5.00 / 0) (#97)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 10:45:01 AM EST
    The books and articles I've rec'd have nothing to do with "justifying doing nothing."

    They were written by some of the foremost authorities with regards to terrorism and counter terrorism. These two know more about than you and I will ever begin to grasp. Sandole, a Marine, now teaches at George Mason. Hoffman is with the Rand Corp.

    Terrorism is an idea. The people who use that idea to act out against X are the terrorists. And they are playing a PR war as well as an action offensive.

    BTW...POTUS already declared victory in May 2004. So we've already won the war...right?

    The last several years have been trying to rebuild the country so that it doesn't become a vacuum like post-Soviet Afghanistan did.

    Why do you suppose that is?

    Personally, I just wish they'd stop making those mistakes you referenced earlier. Cause those mistakes cost time, treasure, lives, and credibility.

    Given that Americans descended from regions in the Middle East have been in the US since sometime in the 19th century, I'd suggest that there is a middle ground to be found. Instead of thinking in an "either/or" space, you might consider thinking about where that third way is...where it's been.


    Given that we are not winning, (1.00 / 0) (#99)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 10:02:39 PM EST
    as shown by the results in Europe and in the US, the cultural war I would say these "experts" have been wrong all along.

    For us to win the so-called Muslim Street must decide that they will not support the actions of the terrorists.

    As long as we do not condemn and attack the actions I have noted time and again, the Arab Street will believe that we do not have the strength to oppose these actions and will, at best, hedge their actions by quietly supporting the terrorists.

    As for middle ground, I was involved in negotiations for years, and "middle ground" only works when both sides are willing to give something up.

    The terrorists have looked at us, seen our history of running away from long conflicts, listened to our radicals and our Demo leaders and believe they can win. It is not for nothing that one of the major players in Hamas hopes for the election of Obama.

    They will give up nothing.

    What would you give up? Education for females? The rights for Gays to live and be free. The right of a woman to not be stoned or executed in a soccer stadium. Freedom of speech? Separation of church and state??

    Your answers will be interesting.


    I'm not willing to give up (none / 0) (#103)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 11:10:28 PM EST
    any of the things you listed. Not to religious extremists of any variety...including the religious extremists in our own country who seem to have issues with gays marrying, women being educated, what have you.

    I mean for crying out loud, the Catholic League protested Dogma as a sacreligious attack on the Catholic Church. Tons of people protested against the showing of "Piss Christ." And you've got the Army of God wandering around mailing envelopes of powder to Planned Parenthood. Not to mention those folks from the Westboro Baptist Church going around to the funerals of soldiers to "demonstrate."

    When are you planning on telling those folks to "get over it"?

    Oh...and last time I checked, we may have changed in 400 years. But many of the things that motivated people back in Salem, continue to motivate people now. Greed's still around. Same with Pride, Sloth, Envy...you name it...it's still out there.

    So no, I don't need to go back to the drawing board.


    Ah, now we have the "religious (1.00 / 0) (#107)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed May 21, 2008 at 07:49:51 AM EST
    Ah, now we have the "religious extremists" in our country. I trust you understand, but perhaps you don't, that there is a difference between protesting gays marrying and killing gays.

    I trust you understand that peaceful protests against supposed art work is different than riots that kill 16 people over a cartoon. Not to mention putting teachers in jail for naming a teddy bear Mohammed.

    And if the Army of God is breaking the law with fake mailings, they should be prosecuted. At least the Catholic Church isn't sending them new "powder."

    So I don't worry about these nuts. They have no global network. They have no state sponsors. What they are doing is exercising their rights. That you draw a moral equivalence between them and the terrorists says much about you.


    There you go again... (1.00 / 0) (#108)
    by kredwyn on Wed May 21, 2008 at 08:51:02 AM EST
    condescension and trying to limit the discussion by bringing in new parameters with "global network" and "state sponsoring." (I saw you try that redefine strategy with someone else.)

    Remember that your village that stoned the young woman? I don't know as you could really define them as a terrorist organization...but the village didn't have a "global network" nor were they "state sponsored"...per se.

    And frankly, after having spent several years researching the IRA (and its various splinter groups) as well as the Protestant organizations (UDA, UVF, UFF, and others), I can assure you that you don't need a "global network" or a "state sponsor" to be a terrorist organization.

    A terrorist group is a terrorist group. Their goals may be different. Their make-up might be different. Their support might be different. Their beginnings are probably different. But they still seek to use terrorism to get to get their message out.

    In this case, the Army of God is a terrorist organization...I believe it's on the list of domestic terrorist groups.

    I'm not trying to equate the Catholic League with terrorism. (and you know that...so the condescension thing is kinda funny...but meh...it's unnecessary.)

    From what I'm getting, your argument is that ending terrorism rests on telling Muslims world-wide (casual, moderate, extreme, radical, and completely out there) to "get over it." That would include Americans who just happen to be Muslim. Though, I confess...I'm not exactly sure what "it" is that they are supposed to get over.

    It seems to me that when you go into your "get over it" argument, your plan is pretty "one size fits all."

    You seem to be intent on shutting down a whole belief system not just the completely out there fundamentalists.

    That's why I asked about Christian groups. Cause whether you like it or not, there are some completely out there Christian fundamentalist groups who have no problem with engaging in violence to get to their ends.

    Unlike you, I'm not certain that it's the belief system that creates the terrorist's need to act out in a violent manner. As such, I'm not prepared to try and shut down the Bible, the Koran, or other religious texts.


    The stoning I refer to (1.00 / 0) (#110)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:03:36 PM EST
    The stoning I refer to is part of Sharia law, and the implementation of Sharia law is one of the goals of the radicals. Our goal should be to make such things outside the social norm.

    And pointing out that the radical Muslims are a loosely organized global network with state sponsorship is not redefining anything, just stating simple facts that must be taken into consideration whenever people decide to start playing the old "moral equivalence" game between our religious nuts and the Islamic radical religious killers.

    This is no different from what the Left did with the Soviet Union and the US for years and years.

    And when these "Christian fundamentalist groups" start flying airplanes into buildings, etc., let me know.

    No matter how you slice it, we don't have the problems in Christianity that the Muslims have in Islam.

    And "get over it" is a huge over simplification. What should be done is that when say a  honor killing takes place, we should insist on the locals call it what it is, murder, and punish killers. If they don't want to, we should.

    After all, the Left is all hot and bothered that we bring full up US criminal justice to GITMO, why not in these situations??

    And no where have I said we shut down anything, just make the actions I have described out of the norm in Muslim groups/countries.

    Do you condone honor killings??


    Do you still beat your wife? (5.00 / 0) (#112)
    by jondee on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:17:06 PM EST
    Only if she were a detainee renditioned to a totalitarian regime?

    When do we start doing something about the horrendous, barbaric treatment endured by the untouchables in India?

    Or, do you condone it?


    A terrorist act... (none / 0) (#115)
    by kredwyn on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:53:22 PM EST
    be it flying airplanes into buildings or dropping a bomb off in front of the British Airways office (happened whilst I was in a dressing room 2 blocks away...very very weird feeling that) or blowing up the train tracks between Belfast and Dublin (another interesting situation when you have to get off the train, take a bus around the bomb site, and get back on a waiting train) or opening up an envelope to find a white powder inside...is still a terrorist act.

    BTW..."they should get over it"? That was your initial idea.

    But I'm still waiting for your plan.

    Honor killings here in the US are prosecuted under US laws. Last I checked, US law does not extend to other countries. How do you propose that we enforce US laws in say...Nigeria? India? Pakistan?

    You need to try and convince the law makers of those countries that there is no basis in Islam, and there isn't...in spite of the Koran being cited, for honor killings or suicide bombings.

    And then you need to convince them to enforce the laws that are already on their books.

    Pakistan has laws against honor killing. But the police don't arrest the guilty parties.

    While I agree that there need to be changes in the laws...and there have been changes with regards to practices like female circumcisions. But it's still practiced...and illegally too, which makes it more dangerous for the young girls being cut.

    There are ways to communicate your concerns--diplomacy, force, economics. But ultimately what you want gets weighed against what the other countries consider their priorities.

    Like it or not, those priorities don't always match.

    But if you're okay with funding a really large military (it'd have to be much bigger than what we have now) to go out and be the world's police force, then you won't mind the hike in taxes to pay for it...and all of the extra stuff that goes with it, right?


    No (1.00 / 0) (#116)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu May 22, 2008 at 01:59:49 PM EST
    No cheap tricks

    I said they should be told to get over it, which is an obvious short comment describing a larger effort.

    You continuing attempts to equivalent any group to the modern day radical Muslim terrorists is amusing. None of them are attempting to take over the world, and none of them have 1/1000 of the nation state support they get. Find better excuses for the Muslim terrorists.

    We aren't in Pakistan so it would be difficult to arrest the murders ourselves. There is such a thing as diplomatic pressure. But frankly, based on the Left's continual lack of condemnation on these issues I don't that will do much good. But we should try!

    As for a larger military, I didn't say we enforce laws on/for the world, just that we start to recognize that where we are we can, and that we must loudly and in terms no one can misunderstand the many things that the radicals do in the name of Sharia law. I again note, failure to do that enables the radicals.


    Have a nice day... (none / 0) (#109)
    by kredwyn on Wed May 21, 2008 at 08:58:53 AM EST
    You and I have been having this conversation (no...I don't see it as a debate...something to be won or lost) for a couple days now.

    I've got a bunch of other stuff to do and not a lot of time to do it in.


    When Hagee (none / 0) (#114)
    by jondee on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:35:38 PM EST
    all hot and bothered over the marvelous prospect of Armageddon, gets to have private meetings with McCain and Lieberman, then he has "state sponsorship", or, at the very least, state sanction.

    Three things... (none / 0) (#104)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 11:55:12 PM EST
    1. Remember? The US does not negotiate with terrorists. Oh...wait...apparently we did back in the 80s...and we almost did this past December. Oops...Republican leaders. My bad.

    2. I never brought up negotiations. You did. I'm not sure why you brought up negotiations.

    Given no. 1, it doesn't make sense that you'd bring up negotiations. Have you come to some sort of bizarre conclusion that I'm open to negotiating with terrorists?

    3. So far as I can tell, you're scrambling a whole bunch of things together so as to try and muddy the discussion re: a soldier--stationed in Iraq--using the Koran, a key religious text in Iraq, for target practice.

    Another book you might be interested in is Volkan's Blood Ties. It's got a great section in it about a politicized drive of cultural nationalism that helped drive a wedge into the Balkans...


    Me too (none / 0) (#111)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:07:13 PM EST
    And nice discussing it with you. If you decide to continue it, come over to my house and we'll do a post and let it run.

    True story... (5.00 / 0) (#98)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 12:09:14 PM EST
    and then I'm done.

    I was 14...had just finished writing an essay on one of my ancestors who'd been hung as part of the Salem Witch Trials.

    I was furious...I didn't understand how these people who considered themselves to be "people of faith" could be so horrid as to hang an 80+ year old woman, smush a man between a pair of boulders, and so on. And I was ready to drop the whole "Christian" thing altogether.

    I mentioned something about this to my grandfather (was visiting him as part of summer break). He said something...don't know what. But whatever it was, it was enough for me (at 14) to pick up his Bible and throw it against the wall.

    While my grandfather was a gentle soul and a patient man, my grandmother was neither <wry grin>.

    After she made me go and pick up the Bible, dust it off, and give it back to my grandfather...I was given what we'd call a "time out" to think about what I'd done and to come up with an apology to my grandfather for treating him and his Bible with...and I quote "a complete and utter lack of respect." There was other stuff about being undignified and not at all a proper young lady.

    After my apology, my grandfather and I actually got into the real discussion about what had pissed me off in the first place. He talked a lot about the difference between the faith itself and the actions of people when he tried to explain that the people of Salem were using their interpretations of faith as a sword against people for whatever reason...but ultimately that reason had less to do with faith and more to do with other stuff including personal vendettas and jealousies.

    In the case of Salem, religion and a fear of witchcraft were the tools used to kill a number of people who...more than likely...were never witches in the first place.

    Religion is a funny thing. It can inspire people to do great things. It can also be used as a battering ram to force people into submission.

    A lot depends on the interpretation.

    There are many many moderates out there who are actively trying to take Islam back from those who would use it as a battering ram.

    Instead of making their efforts harder by telling people to "get over it," why not help their efforts by trying to figure out how to mitigate the circumstances that help to breed terrorists in the first place?


    Salem was 400 years or so ago (none / 0) (#100)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 10:08:08 PM EST
    and has no validity in what is going on now.

    Your problem appears to be that you give moral equivalence to the actions of the terrorist with things we may or may not have done long, long ago.

    We have changed and no longer do these things.

    The terrorists are still in 700AD.

    I suggest your rethink your position in that light.


    And.... (1.00 / 0) (#101)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 10:13:37 PM EST
    In our past terrorists were people who were disadvantage and the theory was that as their conditions improved they would no longer be terrorists.

    This is a religious belief "thing." All of the British terrorists have been middle class or above professional people. Doctors.

    Of the 19 hijackers on 9/11 I think 17 were well educated, middle class, etc.

    This means that you must simply say that certain things are not acceptable if they are going to live in peace with the west. Once you enforce that you take away the radicals influence and then the natural advantages of the liberal west can take hold and florish.


    So tell me... (none / 0) (#105)
    by kredwyn on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:05:49 AM EST
    Do you find that your rhetorical strategy of condescension works?

    Peace (none / 0) (#73)
    by jondee on Mon May 19, 2008 at 01:51:39 PM EST
    just in time to go after Iran: then maybe India for their barbaric treatment of untouchables; North Korea; China..oh yeah, your pals alreay sold the U.S to China.

    Flag burning (none / 0) (#34)
    by Beth on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:54:58 PM EST
    Out of curiosity, how do you feel about flag burning?

    My attitude is that what he did was wrong, but we live on a planet with billions of people, in a country with hundred of millions of people, and we have hundreds of thousands of soldiers. I'm pretty sure lots of people do lots of stupid things all the time. I'm not sure what makes this particularly noteworthy.

    While this was happening, somewhere on this planet someone was performing female circumcision (i.e. genital mutilation), and somewhere else someone was murdering a baby just because she was a girl. I wish stories like that would get more attention and outrage...

    Yes, whoever was doing that (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by Stellaaa on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:58:38 PM EST
    was not a soldier of the United States.  A soldier is a symbol for what America stands for, democracy, human rights, etc.  

    You don't get it... (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by kredwyn on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:19:20 PM EST
    As far as I'm concerned, if a citizen burns the flag in some sort of protest, it's a 1st Amendment thing. If you're burning a old, worn out flag--it's standard procedure for proper retirement.

    But if I were living in a country where one of the occupying soldiers decided that the flag was good for target practice, I'd have issues with it.

    Yes, there are lots of atrocities going on all over the world. But that doesn't negate the possible effects that this--one of many stupid and thoughtless acts--has with regards to community relations in a very tense warzone.

    And if you're interested in reading what I've had to say with regards to the treatment of women in Iraq and the growing illegal sex trade, your welcome to go over to Dkos and dig through my past diaries. There's one or two about the sex trade. There are a couple others about the real life effect that the Sunni-Shiaa conflict has had on familial relationships.


    When a war has no point (none / 0) (#1)
    by HelenK on Sun May 18, 2008 at 08:03:25 PM EST
    the soldiers can almost not be blamed when they do stupid things like this. They are constantly under stress from IEDs and snipers, they have no idea who is the "enemy" and there seems to be no plan and no end in sight. And they have to know their CIC is an idiot.

    These circumstances drive normally professional soldiers into being thugs and a**holes. And I don't how the civilian leadership can believe that good from come from this.

    Thank goodness we apologized anyway.

    Leadership. (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by pie on Sun May 18, 2008 at 08:08:59 PM EST
    the soldiers can almost not be blamed when they do stupid things like this.

    The leadership can almost certainly be blamed.

    And the fact that this got out is also interesting.

    BTW, professional never applies to the enlisted.  Blackwater is "professional."

    We don't want to go there, do we?


    What (none / 0) (#65)
    by Wile ECoyote on Mon May 19, 2008 at 12:56:16 PM EST
    are you talking about?  I need a link where enlisted are not considered professionals.  Some the tech who has been working on aircraft for 20 years is not a professional?  The sniper is not a professional?  The corpman who is patching up the grunts not a professional?  Link please.

    I find that excuse absolutely intolerable (5.00 / 4) (#5)
    by Kathy on Sun May 18, 2008 at 08:39:43 PM EST
    as someone from a military family, there is never an excuse for these sorts of dishonorable actions.  They reflect poorly on the millions of soldiers who are upholding the code of conduct and trying to do an honorable job.  They are not willful children but trained soldiers.  Was the My Lai Massacre excusable because of bad civilian leadership?

    Any attempt to demagogue this soldier is unacceptable to me.  Our military must have standards, and all personnel must be held accountable.


    Yes, he can be blamed (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by dianem on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:07:53 PM EST
    He's not just showing insensitivity toward someone's religion, he is endangering the lives of his comrades by enraging the Iraqi public. A soldier would have to have been living under a rock to not understand that desecrating the Koran is a huge deal in the Muslim world. Personally, I'd give him a dishonorable discharge and make it clear to other soldiers that a repeat would result in more severe discipline.

    This Is The Primary Point FRom A (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by MO Blue on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:06:34 PM EST
    military standpoint.

    he is endangering the lives of his comrades by enraging the Iraqi public.

    Not at all... (none / 0) (#40)
    by dutchfox on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:18:37 PM EST
    He's endangering the Iraqis' lives. That was the purpose of his target practise...to use his weapon to kill Iraqis. But I don't see this man joining the ranks of the Winter Soldiers. I am so sick of this honorable soldier crap. They are not honorable, they are killing innocent civilians every day, in an illegal and immoral war/occupation. Give me a break, people!

    Wait A Minute dutch (5.00 / 0) (#45)
    by MO Blue on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:46:42 PM EST
    Maybe you are commenting in the wrong place. I merely said that his actions increased the risks for his fellow soldiers. This I believe to be true.

    Target practice all by itself does not place Iraqis' lives in danger.

    Also, the article did not say that the soldier's name was George W. Bush. George W. Bush and the government of the U.S. who decided to conduct an illegal and immoral war/occupation. The article did not say the soldier's name was the U.S, Congress who decided to continue to fund this illegal and immoral occupation. I doubt seriously that the regular forces were asked their opinion. Seems like you missed several layers of responsibility when assigning the blame.


    I know (1.00 / 0) (#51)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 08:28:00 AM EST
    you are just so sick of our soldiers...

    You could always go over there and straighten them out.  I'm sure the terrorists would welcome you with open arms..


    Agree (none / 0) (#66)
    by Wile ECoyote on Mon May 19, 2008 at 12:56:50 PM EST

    How surprised should we be, really, (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Anne on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:09:55 PM EST
    when the military kept lowering their standards so that people with histories that included gangs, drugs and prison were welcomed into an already-strained system, handed guns and given a license to kill?  Did we really think there would be a lot of respect for those who were different?

    Yes, it's a bogus war that makes no sense, and when you add deployment after deployment, a VA that's doing a great disservice to so many, substandard equipment, and more, even the best and brightest will feel the strain.  One thing that could have helped - keeping the standards high - got trashed.

    And it makes it so much harder for all the truly good individuals who serve with honor.


    Where does it stop, though? (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by Kathy on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:29:22 PM EST
    Our prisons are understaffed and overburdened. Does that mean neglecting inmates is okay?  The medical care we give detained immigrants is substandard, but then again the funding for hiring competent staff is not there.  Does that mean it's okay that folks seeking asylum die on American soil?  The police in New Orleans are living in horrendous social conditions and dealing with brutal and senseless murders on almost a daily basis.  Is it okay if they get a little hot-headed and beat the crap out of prisoners?

    I mean, where do we draw the line?  Sure, the government right now sucks, but we are still human beings and we still have personal responsibility.  It dishonors us all when this sort of behavior is excused because 'the people in charge are a*sholes.'

    I hope this doesn't sound like I am beating up on you guys, because that's not my intention at all and you are raising some good points, but I just mourn the loss of personal responsibility that the past decade has woven into our national psyche.


    Enlightenment ideals/virtues (5.00 / 3) (#31)
    by Stellaaa on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:42:06 PM EST
    One of the problems I have with the revived culture of vengeance is that it basically is against all the ideals of the Enlightenment ( I use that as the common frame of reference). .  After 9/11 and the Bush mode I think we have trampled on some  more core enlightenment ideals.  

    Vengeance has become a cultural ideal.  Look at so many movies where the victim takes on some violent revenge.  We dehumanize the others, something that I thought we would have not gone back to.  Human rights need to be re-learned.  People need to learn to control themselves and the society needs to demand that of them.  

    We have to stop the vengeance.  

    Have you ever read the Orestia?  About how through vengeance people they were destroying themselves, then Athena comes and brings the rule of law.  Those ancients sure did know some stuff.  


    The soldiers know the mission they are sent (none / 0) (#24)
    by JavaCityPal on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:18:46 PM EST
    on, and it isn't to desecrate the book the culture lives by. The people didn't ask for this war, and they aren't our enemy.

    That soldier needs to be evaluated.


    How did the story get out? (none / 0) (#4)
    by pie on Sun May 18, 2008 at 08:12:56 PM EST
    And why?

    Remember the Koran-flushing?

    That soldier (none / 0) (#7)
    by Leisa on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:05:36 PM EST
    has been through more than we know.  Leadership needs to do a better job of helping these men and women handle the extreme stress they are under.

    It is disrespectful to shot at any "Holy Book".  It also can further fuel the idea that our government is on a religious crusade.  

    Leadership sets the tone and they need to help these soldiers deal with the terrible stress of what they face everyday.  It is hard to be rational when everything is so emotional.

    All books of worship are sacred (none / 0) (#12)
    by stefystef on Sun May 18, 2008 at 09:20:10 PM EST
    I don't think shooting up the Koran is more offensive than shooting up the Bible.  Muslims aren't more religious than Christians.  

    Any defacing of ANY book for worship is wrong.  The fact that soldiers are identifying the Koran with their situation is the problem.  It is sad that our soldiers are reduced to this.  

    You are right about much Islam is ingrained (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by stefystef on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:08:25 PM EST
    in the Middle East, both social and political, not just religiously.  Because we have a separation of Church and State, the idea of Christian faith controlling the law seems rather foreign to most Americans.  In Islamic faith, the Koran IS the Law.  There is no separation of Church and State.  Church IS State, so it is much more offensive to deface a Koran.  

    The BIG mistake is thinking that a Western ideal of democracy would be easy for a culture that is so patriarchal and controlled by a religion that does not allow for such secularism.

    The hubris of Western civilization, I guess.


    Not sure that's accurate (none / 0) (#25)
    by JavaCityPal on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:23:50 PM EST
    You think Saddam was a religious ruler? They were under a dictatorship, and now they are trying to establish a democracy.

    He wasn't... (none / 0) (#27)
    by kredwyn on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:27:38 PM EST
    He was a secularist who spent a good deal of time trying to shut down the Imams and religious groups.

    His crew assassinated al Sadar's father and grandfather. al Sadr himself was in exile--Iran for quite some time.


    Hakim Fled To Iran (none / 0) (#46)
    by squeaky on Mon May 19, 2008 at 02:24:45 AM EST
    But I had not read that Moqtada al-Sadr was in exile as well. Are you sure that you are not confusing the two? Not sure that is true. Do you have a link? My understanding is that al-Sadr remained in Iraq but was in hiding.  Also it is more than likely true that his father was killed by Saddam but I had not read that his grandfather was also assassinated.

    Hmmm.... (none / 0) (#63)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 12:04:46 PM EST
    I know he was in Iran for a while and went back in 2006. It could be that I've gotten the dates scrambled in my head.

    Grandfather was killed by Saddam in 1999. His dad and uncle were killed also.


    Thanks (none / 0) (#78)
    by squeaky on Mon May 19, 2008 at 03:24:45 PM EST
    I did not know that his grandfather was also killed by Saddam. I think that your link is either incorrect or misleading. The man who was killed in 1999 was Moqtada's father along with his two older brothers. He was called by the same name as Moqtada's grandfather, which may be the source of confusion.

    Yet this bashful, tongue-tied young man, is not just anyone. Moqtada is the fourth son of Mohammed Mohammed Sadeq Al-Sadr. His two elder brothers, Mouamil and Mustafa, were assassinated by the Iraqi regime along with his father in 1999, leaving the third brother, Mortada, and himself. In keeping with the traditions of Iraq's bloodstained modern history, Moqtada's father himself had made his entry into public life on the day he took delivery of the corpses of his cousins, Al-Sayyid Mohammed Baqir Al-Sadr -- also known as the first Sadr-- and his sister Bint Al- Huda, executed by Saddam Hussein in 1980.


    As far as I understand his visits to Iraq were rather short and he never was in exile there. The Hakim family was in exile in Iran though.


    Maybe... (none / 0) (#85)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 06:27:34 PM EST
    but I've read it elsewhere as well.

    No idea where the source is at the moment aside from the fact that it's in a file folder marked "al Sadr" (there are like 30 boxes of books and assorted research in the basement that I haven't looked at in a while).


    The Link (none / 0) (#88)
    by squeaky on Mon May 19, 2008 at 10:02:23 PM EST
    I have provided above is pretty good. It gives a brief bio of al-Sadr.

    Yeah... (none / 0) (#89)
    by kredwyn on Tue May 20, 2008 at 12:51:23 AM EST
    The research I was using back then was pretty good too.

    It was an idea I was working on for a conference presentation re: the semiotics and rhetorical strategies involved in public mourning.


    OK (none / 0) (#90)
    by squeaky on Tue May 20, 2008 at 01:36:53 AM EST
    Then your memory is rusty. Al-Sadr's grandfather was not in the car on Feb 18, 1999. It was his father and two brothers who were killed then.  His grandfather was Prime Minister of Iraq in 1948.

    It's a very (none / 0) (#29)
    by JavaCityPal on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:37:37 PM EST
    complicated region of the world, but my time in Saudi showed that Muslims live their book and their religious leaders are not part of the government. They even have their own police force that is separate from the government.

    Saddam was not a religious leader (none / 0) (#58)
    by stefystef on Mon May 19, 2008 at 10:47:31 AM EST
    and I wasn't talking about Iraq in particular, but the Middle East and the Islamic world in general.

    It's only true (none / 0) (#33)
    by Stellaaa on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:49:34 PM EST
    in nations that have Sharia law is practiced.  Many of the Arab nations in the 60's were secularist socialists regimes that became totalitarian.  

    Now it's hard to sort out the totalitarian vs.  the Sharia practices.  The impulse to go towards Sharia was because after colonialism the leaders who did end up being totalitarian, were rejected by the people, and they looked to a more local rule of law that may provide more law and charity than the dictators.  

    Things are never as simple as they are presented in the media.  


    Disagree (none / 0) (#32)
    by BrandingIron on Sun May 18, 2008 at 10:49:16 PM EST

    Muslims aren't more religious than Christians.

    Disagree, for reasons stated by others.  There aren't any states that are fully ruled based upon the rules of the Bible like there are states fully ruled by the Koran (Saudi Arabia is a Koranic state).  The Koran is the immutable word and has been that way/hasn't changed for centuries.


    Well put (none / 0) (#36)
    by JavaCityPal on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:00:45 PM EST
    I lived in Saudi (Jubail) for several years in the early 80's. We lived in a project compound, but the Saudi staff and families lived in the compound, too.

    We were in the eastern province with Shiite's who felt their ties were to Iran.

    I loved my time there.


    Right but... (none / 0) (#57)
    by ctrenta on Mon May 19, 2008 at 09:52:11 AM EST

    ... I guarantee you this soldier gets off easy. It will be nothing more than a slap on the wrist.

    With an institution that rarely prosecutes those who commit sexual assault on other female (and even male) soldiers, what makes us think the military will act differently in this case?

    A down right shame. And this is all in the name of democracy. Something that we're supposed to be spreading.


    It may not be covered in teh UCMJ (none / 0) (#86)
    by kredwyn on Mon May 19, 2008 at 06:31:44 PM EST
    which is the manual for meting out military justice...unless it's part of the Rules of Engagement. Then it might be a violation re: Engagement.

    It's just a book (none / 0) (#37)
    by andyt on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:01:08 PM EST
    Practically speaking I admit that we have to be treading lightly around the Koran over there, but it nevertheless bugs me that your commenters are so high and righteous about respecting the Koran. It's just a book, and this sort of right-wing religious fascism is spreading to the United States with suppression of art that "demeans" Christianity and the like. I think I should have the right to burn a Bible or flush it down the toilet if I want, and the same goes for the Koran.

    Personally, I think that Barrack Obama is an atheist, but he decided he had to get religion in order to begin a career as a politician. You can't get elected President unless you make an overt display of religion -- Christian religion -- and that really sucks. This country is becoming a theocracy.

    It Has To Do With Respecting People (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by MO Blue on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:26:13 PM EST
    their laws, and their culture. Desecrating the Koran is both a moral and legal crime in their country. We are after all in their country without their invitation.

    From a military standpoint, this soldiers actions increases the risks to his fellow soldiers.

    From a humanitarian standpoint, we don't know any details about this particular soldier. Things like how many tours of duty has he had in Iraq, is he suffering from PTSD and what type of mental shape was the soldier in when he was deployed. Unfortunately, the military is not providing enough down time between missions, often signs of PTSD are ignored and not treated and there have been numerous stories of soldiers being sent back to Iraq when they were not mentally fit to serve due to PTSD. They were pumped full of meds and sent back.

    Bottom line the whole thing is a mess.


    Why do you think (1.00 / 0) (#69)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 01:05:59 PM EST
    we should respect laws and culture that brings the things I linked to above??

    Don't you think we should be telling them it is wrong to stone a woman? Wrong to kill gays? Wrong to hang rape victims? Wrong to kill your daughters?

    In the past these things could be ignored. In the small world we now live in they can't be. Especially since Muslims are being allowed to immigrate to this country.



    Religion goes both ways (none / 0) (#44)
    by JohnRove on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:36:47 PM EST
    I wonder why a soldger would want to shoot a korantrying to say that having.  It is just a book filled with a lot of bad ideas.
    my guess is that an atheist would not care one way or another, I know personally I don't have any urge to desacrate a bible but if I needed toilet paper and the bible was all I had I would not think twice about it.
    I guess I am trying to say that having "holy warriors" fighting for the US in Iraq is counter productive as they are going to give too much value to a silly book, it is far easier to hang a paper target than a Koran.

    Well said John.... (none / 0) (#60)
    by kdog on Mon May 19, 2008 at 11:46:35 AM EST
    Never had a lack of t.p. scenario...but I once ran out of rolling papers and a page from the bible was the thinnest parchment around...:)

    I too believe we have an inalienable right to use a copy of the koran/talmud/bible as a religous artifact, target, or doorstop.  Whatever floats the individual's boat.  If it's against the law to do so in Iraq, then it is an unjust law that deserves to be broken.

    I personally cherish and worship the Bill of Rights...if somebody else decides to wipe their arse with it makes no difference to me, it doesn't change the way I feel about and respect the document.


    Excellent post IMO (none / 0) (#50)
    by Militarytracy on Mon May 19, 2008 at 07:14:07 AM EST
    Indeed. (none / 0) (#74)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon May 19, 2008 at 02:24:46 PM EST
    Who among us has walked in this soldier's shoes?

    Totally agree (none / 0) (#39)
    by JohnRove on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:17:04 PM EST
    The only reason this stuff becomes a big deal is that we let it become a big deal.  Especially with religous books, it is just an inanimate object with very little value.  
    It is time to let all the symbolism go.

    I have been saying the same thing (none / 0) (#43)
    by facta non verba on Sun May 18, 2008 at 11:26:45 PM EST
    for months. He is a atheist but he wanted a political career and to do that in the US is hard and so he picked a Church and oops. The Reverend Wright was on Chicago Talk Radio today. No sure what he said.

    On the Koran shooting. Good for the soldier. But obviously bad for our position in Iraq. Granted I am an atheist. Islam is a heinous and arcane religion that punishes its women for the sins of its men. Orthodox Judiaism is not much different. It amazes me that people believe such crap. I didn't express this very well, but I also think that despite that Islam is evil we can coexist. They have a right to their culture and we should respect it.


    Problem is (1.00 / 0) (#70)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon May 19, 2008 at 01:10:27 PM EST
    their culture has spawned people who want to destroy us and take over the world.

    REPORTER: Mr. Bin Ladin, will the end of the United States' presence in Saudi Arabia, their withdrawal, will that end your call for jihad against the United States and against the US ?

    BIN LADIN:.... So, the driving-away jihad against the US does not stop with its withdrawal from the Arabian peninsula, but rather it must desist from aggressive intervention against Muslims in the whole world.

    March 1997 interview if OBL by Peter Arnett, then with CNN.


    Problem is (5.00 / 0) (#82)
    by jondee on Mon May 19, 2008 at 04:46:12 PM EST
    we "spawned" the Unibomber, McVeigh, Columbine, John Haggee and his minions etc

    None of your examples (1.00 / 0) (#92)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue May 20, 2008 at 07:27:10 AM EST
    belonged to terrorist organizations with state sponsorship and plans to control the world.

    And Hagee may be extreme, but he has never called for the destruction of the west.

    Your opinions and beliefs continue to depress me.


    Hagee calls for the (none / 0) (#113)
    by jondee on Wed May 21, 2008 at 12:27:31 PM EST
    destruction of the entire planet, if my understanding of what Armageddon entails is correct.

    Not only do you not have the moral/intellectual fortitude to condemn him, but, Im guessing, you percieve the support of his movement as vital to the future of your agenda. How pathetic is that?


    It's your right to believe that.... (none / 0) (#61)
    by kdog on Mon May 19, 2008 at 11:49:19 AM EST
    As I have the right to believe all organized religions were designed to seperate working people from their money...aka your classic con-job.