Gently Back Into the Water

by craig on July 18, 2013 8:18 am in Uncategorized

I had excellent news from my cardiologist yesterday.  Ready to think about other things now.  I am horrified by the continuing stream of ” royal” baby hype on television.  Truly pathetic – is this 1313 or 2013?  Who buys into this nonsense?

I thought the Lib Dem take on Trident missiles was hilarious.  This small group of islands does apparently need to retain the ability to wipe out one third of the urban population of humankind, as a defence against something undefined – possibly people we invade getting too annoyed about it – and  in order to increase our “influence” in the World.  As we plainly have less influence than the Germans, who don’t feel this need for the power of obliteration, I do not quite see how this works.  Nor do I see Pakistan, which does have nuclear weapons, as very influential.  Nor do I quite understand how our influence can be increased by possessing something  under effective American control.  But there you are.

Anyway, the Lib Dems have come to the intellectually scintillating conclusion that we do need this world shattering power, but we don’t need it on Wednesday or Thursday afternoons or on Saturday mornings, which will be cheaper.  Brilliant, and plainly does not dodge any big ethical or practical questions at all.





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  1. barbara brown

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:29 am

    Welcome back, Craig. Take it easy.

  2. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:40 am

    I echo that and the water’s nice and warm Craig. I am so glad you are OK.

  3. Nice start to the morning. Good to have you back, Craig.

  4. Welcome back, Craig.

    Almost as annoying as the royal baby nonsense is the wall-to-wall guff in the media about the HEATWAVE. We’re on level 3 alert now, one below National Emergency. It’s just so humiliating, foreigners must think we are complete idiots. I lived for ten years in Thailand and it never dropped below national emergency level. God knows how I survived.

  5. Glad the auguries are good, Craig.

    The Trident programme is being spun as a response to new and emergent threat*. It is not being spun as a cheap forward unit for the Yanks. All media please copy.

    Intriguing, the speed with which we could reimagine a purely deterrent weapon as an active response to a threat, if you see what I mean. And if you don’t, sorry.

    *People who don’t like us.

  6. Glad to hear your good news from the cardiologist Craig. I had predicted that some months ago when you first highlighted the issue but its good to get a solid diagnosis with all the excellent modern technology around these days. Do bolster your confidence with some lifestyle modifications — sleep timings, brisk walking/swimming, natural foods tailored to your constitution, periods of silence etc.

    Also, recommend you explore this herbal product, Cardimap, from the goodness of the forest:

    Health is everything!

  7. Dick the Prick

    18 Jul, 2013 - 9:28 am

    Glad you’re well Craig. Heart problems are pretty bloody scary. Fuck knows what level 3 means. I used to work in a regional resilience office and when the York flooded, absolutely fuck all happened – useless gimps. All the best dude.

  8. Welcome back.

    You are right. The only reason we will buy Trident will be as our hundred billion pound subscription to the Pentagon World Domination and Destruction Dinner Club: NATO with its extra affiliated member Israel. What use is a nuclear deterrent in dealing with real rather than imaginary modern-day enemies? Our politicians are giving arms to Al Qaeda in Syria. Our politicians are powsywowsy with the Taliban in Afghanistan while they are picking off our troops only a few miles away.

    The biggest vulnerabilities of delivery of very serious lasting damage to the UK are not incoming Cold War style nuclear warheads from China, Russia or Iraq (remember Blair), they are (i) the risks of bankruptcy of our economy as in 2008 by rogue bankers/traders and (ii) major disruption to our data networks with a high-power Stuxnet from someone else which would bring us to our knees without any bomb.

    What use is one hundred billion pounds’ worth of end-of-the-world missiles in four submarines to sort either of those out? Ultimately we are our own worst enemy and learning that would cost one cold shower.

  9. Komodo: “*People who don’t like us.”

    Good point and its related directly imo to Craig’s : “Nor do I see Pakistan, which does have nuclear weapons, as very influential. ”

    While in general, on the world stage, that is true, Pakistan is one country that has been able to run little circles around the US in the post 911 period. Their ISI/Jihadist alliance has been able to assure the defeat of ISAF in Afghanistan and the survival/pending revival of the Taliban and the propagation of the AQ philosophy/phenomena. As such they serve as an inspiration to jihadists in the Middle East in particular and the World at large. I wonder if the Afghan war and US handling of Pakistan would’ve followed a different course had they no nuclear weapons. I am certainly not making a case for nuclear weapons but one cannot deny their power. Of course the Trident project is unrelated and thanks for baring its conspicuous ludicrousness.

  10. “*People who don’t like us.”

    The French you mean?

  11. I’ve been interested in this beastie for some time –

    And I do accept that whatever the “reason” for squandering our borrowed cash on Trident, the proposed alternative based on cruise missiles might not be such a good idea. The S-1’s been upgraded considerably since this promotional video; the Algerians have a variant with a superb radar and optics for instance:

    Selling like hot cakes, they are. Those 30mm guns are vicious.

  12. Villager gets the point, Fred. You don’t.

  13. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 9:58 am

    Go. Go. You disgusting warmonger with your medals and your big fat Army pension. There is a niche in some board room or other awaiting you, and probably a peerage.

  14. Glad your ticker has been mended and you feel better for it.

    Komodo’s point is noted, there are bad people, and others who want revenge. Pakistans threat is over hyped here, indeed it is a very remote threat. The Taliban would never be able to control the nuclear capabilities, it is something they are not trained for.

    By best estimates it would take all of Pakistan’s trained scientists some 6 month to assemble the various parts of their nuclear weapons, they are NOT assembled and located in different parts of the country.

    Trident is a cold war defensive relic which has now been upgraded to am first strike weapon, a slight change in purpose and policy from what was there for a long time.

    Western military aggression is increasingly taking on globally strategic positions, fighting for economic means and resource and creating their own terror to justify their aggression, the only justification there is for such blatant move to world domination.

  15. Great to have you back Craig.

    Try to chill whenever you can,its important.

  16. Uzbek in the UK

    18 Jul, 2013 - 10:06 am

    Good to hear you are getting better Mr Murray.

  17. King of Welsh Noir I have not complained about the weather but the garden is burnt up and there will be few or no vegetables. 33C here yesterday. Our home interiors are not designed for these temperatures and humidity with carpets, upholstered furniture, heavy curtains, etc. They are more appropriate for the cold, wet and long winters we have been receiving from Gaia who we have angered.

    The contrasts are extreme. It was -20C here on one night in the Winter. Awaiting Thames Water to announce a water shortage and drought measures now.

    Thames Water is owned by the Australian bank, Macquarie, btw and don’t we get big bills for our metered water now.

  18. Uzbek in the UK

    18 Jul, 2013 - 10:15 am

    I think major reason for retaining nucs is that UK (or more accurately British establishment) is still living in the post WWII era. World have changed considerably since but Britain conservatively trying to retain the prestige and influence it had in 20th century. As you pointed out Germany does not need nucs to be major European power nor does Japan need them to be major power in its region. But for Britain membership in the exclusive club of potential humanity destroyers is major attribute of being important nation. Is it possible that this is all because we have nothing else to muscle with?

  19. There are casualties of course who have our sympathy.

  20. Nevermind in great mindless form: “Pakistans threat is over hyped here, indeed it is a very remote threat. ”

    Has it been overhyped here? Where? By whom?

    The threat of a dirty bomb is hardly remote, God forbid, if you understood the intricacies of the ISI/Jihadist alliance.

    Re: “By best estimates it would take all of Pakistan’s trained scientists some 6 month to assemble the various parts of their nuclear weapons, they are NOT assembled and located in different parts of the country.”

    Sources please.

    “Western military aggression is increasingly taking on globally strategic positions, fighting for economic means and resource and creating their own terror to justify their aggression, the only justification there is for such blatant move to world domination.”

    Man has been fighting man for five, ten, forty thousand years. How do you propose to break the cycle?

  21. Glad to see you back!!

    Take it easy sir


    This will make good reading.

    p.s. to Craig. I spent time with Liz W.’s brother last week. She is doing fine.

  23. I’m less concerned by the ‘disgusting warmonger’, who, when younger, probably earned at least some of those medals the hard way, but by the lousy logic he employs to justify his approach to the very real problem of how to stop the bad guys getting their hands on the chemicals. If we’d kept our noses out of Syria from the start, or if we propped Assad up, even now, the problem would be solved. The one entity in Syria which is definitely hostile to Sunni fundamentalists is the Assad regime. And if Assad’s a bastard, and he is, his track record’s no worse than many bastards we’ve left alone.

  24. Yes, Nevermind, but I wasn’t pointing to Pakistan or anyone else specific. My point was that ‘people who don’t like us’ are not a new or emergent threat. Even people with nukes who don’t like us (like France, Fred?).

    And I have to say that the reasons that Germany doesn’t have nukes are unconnected to whether it feels it needs them or not. Quite apart from anything else, it realises that the US arsenal covers it. Our similar realisation has been a long time a-coming; I’m still waiting.

  25. “Villager gets the point, Fred. You don’t.”

    Well throughout history our greatest threat has always come from our near neighbours. Pakistan never tried to invade Britain, N. Korea neither and I can’t envisage a time coming when they ever would.

    France has nuclear weapons, Europe has had two wars to end all wars in the last century.

    Israel has nuclear weapons and an expansionist policy. If they decided to annex Cyprus we could be on a sticky wicket.

  26. Uzbek in the UK

    18 Jul, 2013 - 10:45 am


    Middle East has been Proxy conflicts area for centuries and even millennias. I would say since collapse of Roman Empire. Syria itself (Assad’s late father) used Lebanon as proxy. The problem in Syria as similar to Iraq with the difference that this time Sunnis are majority that oppressed by Alawait minority. Meddling in conflicts prolong them or make more complicated but by no mean start them. Potential of conflict in Syria and in many other conflicts where West was involved lay within conflicting parties.

    I could give you one clear example of this. In Central Asia due to complexity of geographical location and proximity of Russia and China Western influence is minimal. But this does not help with the fact that regions have long list of potentially deadly issues starting from economic underdevelopment and corruption to inter and intraethnic tensions, interborder tensions and most of all water security. Whether or not West or any other party is meddling or not these issues will (unfortunately) one day turn into conflicts (there have already been some in Southern Kyrgyzstan).

  27. I trust my most recent post explains where I am coming from Fred. I am criticising the current rebranding of Trident in terms of the War on Tourism paranoia, in order to sell it to the plebs as a done deal. It’s a deterrent. It’s always been a deterrent. I grant you our historical fear of France getting jiggy, and I don’t trust Russia an inch, but we seriously need to examine the cost benefit of this one.

  28. *(I could see the point if we detached ourselves from the US, but that’s not going to happen)

  29. I recommend Power Aid, as I believe it’s isotonic. Keep plenty of bottles in the fridge!

    I am mildly interested in the forthcoming Royal baby – but first he or she needs to be safely born and healthy, which would be a gift in itself.

    A British navy captain after a missile test was asked by a reporter, ‘But if you actually fire it, its Armageddon -there would be no realm left to defend.’ He replied that it was the capacity to do something terrible that protected us, i.e. the deterrent effect. No-one will invade a nuclear power.

    Do the Libdems really believe that certain weekdays are perfectly safe? :)

  30. Villager, once again your wind chimes need adjusting.

    “God forbid, if you understood the intricacies of the ISI/Jihadist alliance.”

    you obviously do have much more of a military education and insight than me, I only served 8 years and wrote my dissertation on it, so I’m always up for learning from you, mother superior.
    So what is/was you clearance level? top secret?, cosmic top secret? you still serving now?

    You tell us why it takes 6 month to assemble Pakistan’s nuclear threat, you are so clever by half that you really do not need any links from me, bar one.

    “The constant assertion of belief is an indication of fear.” JK

  31. “Flaming June
    18 Jul, 2013 – 10:16 am
    There are casualties of course who have our sympathy.”

    While one thinks over the best possible ways of conveying this sympathy, I would suggest that discussion of the heatwave best be moved to the more apt “We’re not dead yet” thread. Ditto for other off-topics.

  32. LOL Nevermind, i see the not-a-mind space you come from.

    Pure personal attack and not the slightest response to my valid questions, but never mind its what i expected. Don’t know why you would need a holiday — your mind is already on one.

  33. welcome back craig –
    hope your health continues to improve.

    the military industrial complex, and all its offshoots & ennablers, are sadly thriving while so much else continues to decay.

    i’m off to watch the Ashes….from the couch. not a bad way to relax.

    best wishes.

  34. As usual, Uzbek, you make a good point. But, discarding any pretensions to morals and ethics I may have for a minute, is it not the case that in these inherently conflicted states, that a hard man, or hard dynasty, usually arises, and maintains a significantly better level of order than we are currently seeing in Syria, for a long time?

    I mean, I don’t know how you are supposed to measure these things, but the numbers of killed, wounded and displaced in Syria are colossally greater than anything Assad showed any signs of inflicting on the country, and the spur to the originally peaceful revolution’s turning violent was surely the West’s tacit support for regime change, and the prospect of active assistance, a la Libya, to that end?

  35. “Their ISI/Jihadist alliance has been able to assure the defeat of ISAF in Afghanistan and the survival/pending revival of the Taliban and the propagation of the AQ philosophy/phenomena”

    Source please.

    Anyone interested in the intricacies of the CIA/ISI/Jihadist alliance could do worse than looking at the work of Maloy Krishna Dhar, former Indian intelligence officer.

  36. Thanks for that MJ.
    This is his blog now run by his son. RIP Maloy

  37. Nature notes.

    The fields of barley are now silvery gold and the heads of the stalks are bent over awaiting the blades of the combine harvester. There are odd flecks of scarlet from the poppies and there are some very tall wild oats which stand out above the crop.

    Overnight, an animal, probably a badger, has dug a 3ft deep hole in a terraced flower bed in my garden, probably to get at the contents of a bumblebee nest. What a shame for the bees. Now I have to make the damage good.


    Did anyone else see that amazing Ken Loach film The Wind That Shakes the Barley?


    I see that we have a replacement Resident Invigilator above.

  38. Re dispersal of Pakistani nuclear components –

    Pakistan, as far as it is possible to discern from open source material, also stores its nuclear weapons unassembled withthe fissilecore separated from thermonuclear explosive, delivery vehicles, and the arming, fusing, and firing (AF&F) systems. These components are stored in facilities scattered around the country. Although such separate storage provides a layer of security against unauthorized use and theft of an intact weapon, it could also potentially make it “easier for unauthorized people to remove a weapon’s fissile core if it is not assembled.” Additionally, dispersal “may also create more potential access points for acquisition and may increase the risk of diversion.”

    While the U.S. has targeted approximately $100 million worth of its overall aid to Pakistan toward increasing its capacity to secure its nuclear assets, U.S. officials still remain largely in the dark about the location and storage situation of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons.

    Nonetheless, even if terrorists were able to acquire a fissile core from a weapon they would not be able to detonate it without either acquiring the AF&F system or developing their own system to implode it. They could, however, mine the weapons-grade uranium from the fissile core. However, given that Pakistan’s nuclear weapons are likely to have anywhere between 15 and 25 kg of uranium metal in their core, the prospective nuclear terrorists would need to mine multiple cores to obtain enough fissile material (between 40 and 60 kg) for a gun-type weapon.

    Refers to this in text:

    68. Kerr and Nikitin, “Pakistan’s Nuclear Weapons,” 9 (no publisher etc supplied -K)

    Now can we stop swinging our handbags, please?

  39. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 11:42 am

    Great to see you back again Craig. Here’s best wishes for a strong recovery and active blog-life.

    @Komodo. 10 46am

    “…our historical fear of France getting jiggy.”

    I thought they already did, in 1066, and won.

    Seems to me your King Harold needed a visor more than a Trident.

    As for the usefulness of nuclear weapons, here’s what Admiral Lord Mountbatten had to say back in 1979. “The nuclear arms race has no military purpose.

    Wars cannot be fought with nuclear weapons. Their existence only adds to our perils because of the illusions they have generated.”

    As the highest ranking naval officer he would have been well informed.

    On July 8, 1996, the World Court, the International Court of Justice at the Hague, made it clear that nuclear weapons are just plain illegal.

    As with so many of the matters discussed here it seems to boil down to the dominant power elites ignoring both common sense and international law for as long as they can get away with it.

    It’s up to us to keep the issue boiling.

  40. Articulation of the current bizarre interactions of the politicos is an art, and it is so refreshing to find that you have just achieved that. The notion of not having massive weapons of mass destruction on; Wednesday or Thursday afternoons or on Saturday mornings as a cost saving measure indeed is a brilliant analysis of the mindset of the intellectually dishonest and morally bankrupt group of operatives; entangled in a dichotomy between their rhetoric and their deeds, trying to navigate the waters of deceit and fraudulent promissory aspirations.

    Sky “news” had found the need to pull out the old Liam Fox, who then pontificated; “to counter the threats of nuclear blackmail, UK needs to get even more subs and nukes and not less” (paraphrasing). The amiable Sky stenographer however failed to ask blackmail by whom, and what entity, thus leaving the blackmailer to the imagination of the punters “consuming” the “news”!

    Interesting that in the same package Liam Fox tore into the amount of interest on government debt that will be paid next year is to exceed the budget for education, adding that is what socialists did for this country. Fact that the socialists were busy helping the banksters out, to keep them in the champagne life style and bonus culture these delicate fraudsters are so accustomed to, somehow was not entertained by Liam Fox. Further highlighting his contempt for the plebs by stating such a blatant and obvious untruth.

  41. The last segment of Woman’s Hour was interesting.

    The Sleep Room is a ghost story written by former clinical psychologist Frank Tallis. It’s based on the true events of a psychiatrist who put patients to sleep for months and gave them electric shock treatment while they were sleeping in order to help them recover from depression, schizophrenia and other mental health conditions. The hospital was in London and the majority of the patients were young women. The last real life sleeping room closed down as recently as 1972. Frank Tallis discusses why he decided to write a supernatural thriller on this subject. (iPlayer coming up)

    It was said that the psychiatrist William Sargant had been recruited by the secret services and did not maintain confidentiality. The CIA at the time were interested in his research findings as they were looking for ways to erase parts of the memories of ex-agents. The research would be also be of use in their brainwashing techniques.

    Frank Tallis’s note.


    Just an example on how tetchy the NSA is now getting.
    Daniel Bangert wanted to walk with friends and plant a few flowers improving the top secret NSA Dagger complex in Griesheim, as seen here.
    thanks to ed22 for the photo.

  43. “I thought they already did, in 1066, and won. ”

    No, that was the Normans.

  44. Hmmm, Sofia (Vous êtes francaise? Merde. And thank you for our Norman architecture – a distinct improvement on Saxon.)N

    Unfortunately, nukes do have a useful purpose, whether we like it or not. Blackmail. And I’m afraid the only response to that is “if you do it to us, we’ll do it to you”. On that basis and no other, until international law can somehow be made to apply internationally, I think we’re stuck with nukes in some shape or form. How many, and who should control them, in the absence of effective agreed oversight of all, is a moot point.

    It used to be the understanding that nukes – or our nukes, anyway – were purely for deterrent purposes, but the current language from PR-land, as well as recent noises made by the US and Israel re. Iran, seems to be shifting in the direction of ‘justifying’ first-use, pre-emptively, in response to the perceived threat rather than the action. I join you in saying no to this.

  45. And pace arms salesman extraordinaire Liam Fox, we do not need more of the bloody things in packages ranging from family-size to Buy 1000, Get 1000 Free. Our posts crossed, Passerby.


    Interesting interview with Herve Falciani, the Swiss bank whistle blower. He says that he would like to help Mr. Osborn with his tax havens and banking friends. Will Gideon get in touch with him?

    off course he will……

  47. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 12:37 pm

    @Komodo. 12 08pm

    Presque correct, mon ami. Une bonne partie du mélange est français.

    @Fred. 1158Am

    Quelle langue les Normands donnent aux Anglais sauvage?

    C’était, bien sûr, une mission civilisatrice.

    Eh bien personne ne peut pas réussir à chaque fois!

  48. re: Germany has no need for nuclear weapons.

    No they don’t, but it is still a prime target as it is forced to harbour vast amounts of these weapons on its territory, still.

    Germany has excused itself from the nuclear MAD club, not wanting to disturb/scare the minds of little Englanders who still live in/of WW2 times.

    There is a lesson in this, i.e don’t get f…d over by NATO’s arms swingers and logistic nuts.

  49. Sofia –
    They were bloody Vikings ffs. Just because they spoke French…and wouldn’t learn our fair English speech*…. doesn’t mean your peasantry were superior to ours.

    * Not a single French word in that bit

  50. @Sofia

    What language do Scots speak?

    The Normans were Norse, the clue is in the name.

  51. You’re getting near a place I can see myself, Nevermind. With stockpiles of US nukes on our soil (God knows what’s in the bomb dumps at Lakenheath/Mildenhall, for instance, but they probably glow in the dark), we have absolutely no need for an independent deterrent – the US’s own interests ensure that its own deterrent will be invoked if its stockpiles are threatened. The question of what happens if we disengage from the US’s foreign policy, or if the US decides,as it may well do, that its European aircraft carrier is redundant, is less clear. Personally, I can’t wholly dismiss the validity of deterrence.

  52. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 1:08 pm

    @Komodo. 12 51am

    Sauf, naturellement, “supérieur”!

    “Ne suis-je pas assez puni de n’être point Anglais?”

  53. PS. The F-35 is a pile of crap. As at March this year…

    Much more, including the $159M (admitted, probably less than the truth) unit cost, on the same site.

    Meanwhile The Enemy is just taking delivery of these pretty little numbers:


  54. = better. Just the italicised bit. It’s hard to avoid our Latinate words, including Celtic and Spanish, which are shared with (pffft) French.

    lol, anyway.

  55. PS. The Queen is still Duke (sic) of Normandy. EN-GER-LAND!!

  56. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 1:39 pm

    @Fred.1 02pm

    “What language do Scots speak?”

    Last time I was there it sounded like some rather strange of off-shoot of English.

    But if you really are asking me what language they used to speak, well, of course, it was Irish.

    It was of course the Scoti who kindly invited themselves to the country that now bears their name, bringing with them the water of life, the Gaelic language, and of course the famous Scottish good looks.

  57. “But if you really are asking me what language they used to speak, well, of course, it was Irish.”

    No, half of Scotland never spoke Gaelic.

    Speaking French didn’t make the Normans French any more than speaking English makes the Scots English.

  58. well, of course, it was Irish., Not quite. Granted, they’re both Q-Celtic, but while Scots Gaelic is similar, it’s not the same. Breton is P-Celtic, before you mention it. Probably quite prevalent in France prior to its being civilised by the Romans, whose language was also Celtic in origin.

  59. @ Komodo – Until recent times there were two languages in use in Scotland. Scots in the Lowlands, and Gaelic in the Highlands. Neither language is in general use today.

    Scots was once perhaps the longest continuous form of English in use in the world. It was the language of government in Scotland in the middle ages, when Norman French was the government language in England. Most of the poems of Robert Burns are in Scots for those who want an idea of what it was.

    Neither language is much used today in everyday life. For example, my late mother-in-law’s first language was Gaelic, yet none of her descendants speak it today. Indeed there are more Gaelic speakers in Canada that there are in Scotland. My father, who was brought up in the 1920s in Stranraer, spoke Scots (the language of Burns) as a boy but not as an adult. Most Scots today speak a more standardized form of English with a Scots accent. I am no linguist, but it seems to me that Scots, or indeed Chaucerian English, are more Germanic sounding than today’s language.

  60. Tapa leibh, Roderick. You are of course right. But the above conversation is more of the nature of idle badinage (French word) between the Auld Enemy and the Evil French.

    English on both sides of the border has picked up a lot of foreign muck since Chaucer’s time. The basis is indeed Germanic, from the Saxon/Frisian component. James I and VI wrote in Scots – which is still recognisably more English than anything else, and can be understood, just, by an English speaker. Some of the words -“scriever” for “writer” may seem alien, but reflect a common Latin (or-“makkar” – Germanic) influence remaining in one while being lost by the other tongue.

  61. Caig: Can I join with the others here who are delighted to see you feeling better.

    I guess your cardiologist has given you all the warnings about lifestyle, diet etc… so I won’t…

    But damn you are so right about this damned baby nonsense. Fortunately I don’t count among my friends one single person who is remotely interested in what Kate Middleton is doing or having, so I’ve missed most of it.

    For me it’s simply another mouth to feed; another person to be protected 24/7 at our expense, and I can’t for the life of me understand why we are having all this nonsense about something thousands of people do every day. Unless Middleton has had blue blood transfused into her, it is a completely ordinary everyday baby….

    I hope the baby and the mother are safe and well… like I would for every other mother and baby in the world. Beyond that YUK.

    As for the nuclear weapons, I rather thought that the Labour proposal was even better. It goes like this:

    We need the full £100 billion update, but we also need to work hard to disarm…

    So, we are going to pay out £100 billion and then scrap the things?

    Jeez. I knew Labour was bad with figures. I just didn’t know how bad.

    They can do what the hell they want with them as long as they get them off Scottish soil.

  62. @Roderick

    In the part of Scotland I live they spoke Norse.

  63. Uzbek in the UK

    18 Jul, 2013 - 4:33 pm


    I also do not know how to measure these things (and not sure if anyone knows for sure). This has been central problem in relations between nations since national states and intensified after collapse of colonial order. Syrians might have avoided scale of victims we are currently witnessing but for how long? In contrast (and here I am again going back to Central Asia) absence of Western meddling (or to be more precise Russian and Chinese backing) in Uzbekistan is one of the major reasons of why Karimov is still in power. It is believed that there are around 8000 political prisoners in Uzbekistan. Every year several hundred of them are being killed by torture or die of malnutrition or diseases. Scale of victims is NOTHING comparing to 80000 killed in Syria and half a million of displaced and many more thousands injured what is potentially could happen in Uzbekistan if Karimov’s regime to be challenged (at least according to Karimov’s propaganda). Does this make Karimov’s regime better alternative?

    The real problems in societies like Syria or Uzbekistan is not Western meddling (or its absence), it is corruption, economic underdevelopment, internal meddling between different centres of power (internally), absence of civil society, absence of freedom of any kind etc. All these problems cannot be silenced forever. They will eventually come out and will take its death toll, with or without western meddling involved.

  64. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 4:56 pm

    Just back from the Royal Courts of Justice where a group of us stood outside with our placards in a vigil for Dr David Kelly who died 10 years ago. We are calling for the Attorney General to hold an inquest,

    A few photographers took photos and Press TV sent a cameraman and reporters.

  65. Good to see you back!

    Why, in the first five years or so after the end of the Soviet Union, Britain couldn’t have announced a desire to get rid of these hideous weapons, I don’t know. I’m not even suggesting unilateral disarmament. They could have been put on the table as a kind of bargaining chip to try to catalyse global, multilateral disarmament or even just an international dialogue on the same. That, at least, would have been a start. Instead of that our useless “leaders” cling onto the bloody useless things for grim death. Not even the Lib-Dem chatter seems sincere. They are probably – with salaries, expense accounts and pensions looming large in their minds – just trying to curry favour with some of the poor saps who used to vote for them so they can save their seats.

    Now we’re skint and everybody knows it. In the highly unlikely event that they were offered up as a starting point for international negotiation, nobody would believe it was for the right reasons.

  66. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 5:06 pm

    Shades of Danny Casolaro

    “On San Diego 6 News, national security reporter Kimberly Dvorak, for example, recently took to the air and talked about her conversations with sources surrounding the crash after spending a day in Los Angeles investigating. Noting that the police report was not available, she said law enforcement and fire department officials refused to comment, with some saying they had been instructed not to say anything. “That kind of stands out; we look at the NSA, the government says if you have nothing to hide, don’t worry,” she said.

    Military officials, meanwhile, told Dvorak that the fire was “extremely hot” and “not something we normally see,” the reporter continued. The fact that the engine was between 150 and 250 feet behind the car was also strange, according to university physics professors she spoke with — it should have been in front, if anything. Another interesting fact highlighted in the report: There were no skid marks at the accident scene. “

  67. The LibDems… happily forcing the disabled out of their council homes.

    They’ve now made supporting the existence of the Israeli state a condition of being one of their MPs. They are allowed to question the existence of the Union of the United Kingdom… but not of Israel. They have to support a Jewish supremacist state there…

  68. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 5:19 pm

    Je You are referring to the weasel-like Clegg’s action on David Ward I assume. David Ward is being persecuted in the same way that Jenny Tonge was. Sir Bob Russell is also been given a hard time.

    MP David Ward has Lib Dem whip withdrawn over Israel comment
    David Ward apologised after comments he made in January

    Related Stories
    MP Ward denies ‘language classes’
    MP faces action over ‘Jews’ comments
    MP censured over Israel criticism

    Lib Dem MP David Ward has had the party whip withdrawn over comments he made about Israel.

    He posted a tweet at the weekend calling the country an “apartheid state” and saying that “Zionists” were “losing the battle”.

    It comes after a long-running dispute with the party’s leadership over his use of language and comments he made about “the Jews”.

    Mr Ward said he would not apologise for his tweet.


  69. Sopia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 5:32 pm

    @Fred,Rodderick, Komodo


    I am a well corrected, humbled and hugely more knowledgeable woman now. Thanks.

    And I guess I’ll have to be doing the decent thing and renouncing my earlier utterances.

    Vive la diversité!

  70. I thought the best bit was the suggestion that to save money we might send the boats off to sea with missiles but the missiles wouldnt have any warheads.
    Good to see you back Craig

  71. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 6:01 pm

    This dangerous woman, who will replace Susan Rice at the UN, is proposing that Israel be admitted to the UN Security Council. That would give the Israelis carte blanche to carry on committing whatever crimes they wish. They have not even ratified international treaties.

    Obama’s UN pick vows push for Israeli seat on Security Council

    of if you prefer it, the Guardian version

    Obama’s UN nominee Samantha Power highlights Syria and Israel
    Power tells confirmation hearing the failure of the UN to stem slaughter in Syria is ‘a disgrace that history will judge harshly’

    More about Ms Power

  72. Komodo, and Roderick, (and Sofia),

    From Wikipedia

    Scottish Gaelic (Gàidhlig; [ˈkaːlikʲ] is a Celtic language native to Scotland. A member of the Goidelic branch of the Celtic languages, Scottish Gaelic, like Modern Irish and Manx, developed out of Middle Irish, and thus descends ultimately from Old Irish.


    Scottish Gaelic developed as an independent language after the 12th century. With the growth of Dál Riata and its use by the church, Scottish Gaelic became the language of most of Scotland, replacing Cumbric in the south and Pictish in the east.[14] The language was maintained by the trade empire of the Lordship of the Isles, which continued to control parts of Ulster until the 16th century.

    The Gaelic language eventually displaced Pictish north of the River Forth, and until the late 15th century was known in Scots (then known as Inglis) as Scottis, and in England as Scottish.

    Native speakers 58,552 in Scotland

    Lots more info here

  73. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 6:19 pm

    Distressed family members were also outside the Royal Courts of Justice.

    Munir Farooqi, Israr Malik & Matthew Newton (Hamza) APPEAL against conviction is this week 17th-19th July 2013.

    A peaceful demonstration will be held outside the courts in London on the duration of appeal. If you cannot make it every day, please make every effort to attend the last day of hearing when verdict will be given Friday 19th July 10am-4pm inshaAllah.

    Following their conviction the family face the threat of being left homeless. Remember the fate of the family home also depends on THIS appeal.

    The family may lose their home if the judges do not see how much support there exists out there for the innocence of these three brothers.

    Some of the facts.

  74. You were close enough, Sofia. You must remember though that such matters are rather delicate round these parts, especially this time of year.

  75. ‘Grand Hack Auto
    The $25 gadget proves hackers can remotely crash your car’

    I get an email telling me what’s in the latest edition of New Scientist. But I can’t read it unless I subscribe.
    Dithering over it now …


    Honey, I shrunk the proton
    The nucleus will never be the same again

    Inside the brain of a Neanderthal
    Gene breakthrough shows us Neanderthals’ mental life

    Why do we hate exercise?
    If it’s so good for us, why is it so hard?

  76. “You must remember though that such matters are rather delicate round these parts, especially this time of year.”

    Yes, Herbie. And I don’t think it can be allowed to “muddle on through” every year, with the constant potential for violence.

    I saw tourists interviewed on tv, who were “looking forward to the bonfires”. Clearly they had no idea the Pope was on top. (Not that I care one way or another about him or his religion.)

  77. @ Fred re your comment “In the part of Scotland I live they spoke Norse”. Yes, we are a bit Viking too. Ironically, I gather that the original language of Scotland was not Scots Gaelic, or Scots/English or even Norse – but a forerunner of Welsh (as it was in England too).

    @ Sophia – There is diversity amongst the English regions too, but most people don’t understand just quite how diverse a country Scotland is and always has been.

    @ Dreoilin – Here is what Wikipedia says about Scots – “Northumbrian Old English had been established in what is now southeastern Scotland as far as the River Forth [i.e. where Edinburgh the capital is] by the seventh century, as the region was part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Northumbria.” I should just add that I had read somewhere that Pictish is thought to have been a dialect similar to a forerunner of Welsh but that nobody is really certain.

  78. @Sopia

    When I’m reading old books I often see people who spoke Gaelic referred to as “Irish speakers”, it was the common name for them in Scotland certainly well into the 19th century.

  79. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 7:31 pm

    “This dangerous woman, who will replace Susan Rice at the UN, is proposing that Israel be admitted to the UN Security Council. That would give the Israelis carte blanche to carry on committing whatever crimes they wish. They have not even ratified international treaties.

    Obama’s UN pick vows push for Israeli seat on Security Council”

    Another post from Flaming June which, by careful drafting and the selective omission of facts, must be termed tendentious and potentially misleading.

    1/. The UN Security Council has 5 permanent members and 10 non-permanent members, which serve for 2 years. The US might be pushing for Israel to get a 2 year term as a non-permanent member (it is fully entitled to do so) but it is the General Assembly which appoints those non-permanent members;

    2/. The present 10 non-permanent members include such paragons of humzn rights and democracy as Azerbaijan, Guatemala, Morocco, Rwanda and Pakistan (about whom I have heard no complaints on this blog from F.J.). So Israel, if elected by the General Asssembly, would be in good company;

    3/. The election of Israel as a non-permanent member would not give that state any more “carte blanche” to carry on committing crimes than is given to to the UK, USA, Russian Federation and China by virtue of their permanent membership or to the 5 states mentioned in point 2/. by virtue of their ,o,-permanent membership;

    4/. Israel has not ratified SOME international treaties. Perhaps in some ways that is more honest than certain other states which have ratified certain treaties but do not observe their provisions.


    Recalling that Flaming June recently claimed that Israel was “not a state”, I fear that this post of hers once again shows her in her usual anti-Israel mode. Reminds one of what the Arabs used to say about “sweeping Israel into the sea”, doesn’t it?

  80. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 7:35 pm


    Check again. I was able to access the article without paying. Maybe the TV license in bunging you up.

  81. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 7:41 pm

    I believe she said ‘knotty state’ or ‘naughty state’. Either would apply.

  82. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 7:46 pm

    Black hat USA is going to give a demo of the $25 device @ Caesars Palace LV July 27 to August 1.

    I think I’ll register. Need to find the day.

  83. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:13 pm

    “The military judge presiding over the case of Pfc. Bradley Manning ruled Thursday to maintain Manning’s most severe charge of “aiding the enemy”—a charge critics are calling a major blow to the freedom of the press.

    Firedoglake’s Kevin Gosztola reports:

    The judge has denied the defense motions for a finding of “not guilty” on the “aiding the enemy” charge and the charges alleging Manning exceeded authorized access on his computer. What is important to note about this ruling is that she was to consider all evidence presented to her in a “light most favorable to the prosecution.”

    “Only in the absence of some evidence” that by reasonable inference could “reasonably tend to establish an offense charged” was she to rule that Manning was not guilty.”

    It’s essential to this case. The USCMJ needs to implement the 12 juror rule. Judges can be gotten to.

  84. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:15 pm

    A state has borders. Israel doesn’t have borders.

    Palestinians have never said anything about sweeping Israel into the sea. Ahmadinejad did not say it either.

  85. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:21 pm

  86. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:22 pm

    Is this bleating from Murdoch designed to influence the outcome of the upcoming trials of his protégée Ms Brooks and her cohort?

    Rupert Murdoch criticises police inquiry
    Mr Murdoch appeared before the Commons culture committee in 2011

    Murdoch prepared to face MPs again
    News Corp defends Murdoch over tapes
    News Corp officially splits in two

    Rupert Murdoch has rowed back from claims that the inquiry into corruption is “totally incompetent” but says the police response is “disproportionate”.

    In letters to two MPs, the News Corp boss backed away from “overly-emotional comments” made in a secretly-recorded meeting broadcast on Channel 4 News.

    But while he now says he does not “doubt the police’s professionalism”, he says the inquiry has taken too long.

    He wrote after MPs demanded he explain comments made at a Sun staff meeting.


  87. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 8:35 pm

    @Soccer Doc. 5 54pm

    “…to save money we might send the boats off to sea with missiles but the missiles wouldn’t have any warheads.”

    It just keeps getting more and more like a Tom Sharpe story. I was sad to hear of his death last month. Now he’s gone I regret never writing to thank him for all those wonderful tales and characters.

    Can anyone suggest a writer who might step into his shoes.

  88. Credit to Flaming June to attempt a reply, but sorry, not good enough. I’d recommend her to try harder except she hasn’t a basis. I almost fell for her implication that Power would be pushing Israel for a permanent seat! A fundamental breach of objectivity or just mere propaganda?

    S Korean World Bank Presidents competence being questioned based on S Korean pilots in a mishap; God being petitioned to Damn America, and now this.

    How do we solve a problem like Maria?

  89. Sofia Kibo Noh,

    Tom Sharpe has had a good last twenty years in his home in Spain –

  90. Sofia “I regret never writing to thank him”

    Well don’t lose the chance to write to Habbabkuk and thank him. I presume you’ve read his rather well-argued comment above and appreciate not only the robustness of the riposte but also an indication of his own thoughts which you have previously complained are not declared.

    Btw what do you make of Pakistan, its nukes and the ISI/Jihadist complex?

  91. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 9:33 pm

    A double act is now on stage.

  92. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 9:35 pm

    @Rouge. 9 01pm


    Good to know Tom Sharpe enjoyed his last years.

    Surprising to find a little detail of the man in, of all places, a property supplement.

    Surounded by “…row upon row of books – and beautiful black and white photos taken by Sharpe during his days as a photographer and anti-apartheid activist in South Africa turn his office into an intimate gallery. His activism landed him in jail on more than one occasion.

    “I enjoyed being interrogated,” he laughs. The police who arrested him gave him material for the characters he ridiculed so entertainingly in his books.”

    I always thought Constable Els, Leutenant Verkramp and Inspector Flint were too good not to have been inspired by experience.

  93. “I think I’ll register. Need to find the day.”

    It looks a bit limited to me.

    Something like this would give you a far greater range of cars you could play with.

  94. @Sofia Kibo Noh

    Yes, not to mention the large Havana cigars he enjoyed.

  95. Flaming June

    18 Jul, 2013 - 9:43 pm

    I had to laugh at this.

    “Hasbara” courses at Israeli universities exposed in new report

    Desperation is very evident.

    Felt sick when reading this however. The 73 year old Harry Webb is scraping the barrel now.

    MEMBERS OF the audience at the Cliff Richard concert at Nokia Arena on Saturday night were so focused on the Peter Pan of Pop that they did not notice the couple canoodling in the VIP box – though some people might have wondered about the beefed-up security detail. The couple in question has been known to sneak into the movies once the lights are dimmed, and to sneak out again just before the movie ends.

    Their names are Binyamin and Sara Netanyahu, and like so many Israelis of their peer generation, they’re fans of Richard, and decided to enjoy his show after meeting him earlier in the week and receiving a personal invitation.

    They were having fun just like regular people – well, not quite. After the performance they went backstage to congratulate him, as did British Ambassador Matthew Gould and his wife, Celia.

  96. New Yorker Krishnamurphy to fellow 911 cleaner, “NEVER AGAIN will I imbibe cancer for Larry Silverstein, after banning cancer treatment for first responders on cost grounds, he is still claiming an extra $4 billion in further damages?!!” Its true only the Almighty can arrange for these highly cunning devils.

  97. Craig on RTE Radio 1 right now.
    A programme about Whistleblowers

  98. Sofia Kibo Noh

    18 Jul, 2013 - 10:13 pm

    @Villager. 9 20pm

    “Btw what do you make of Pakistan, its nukes and the ISI/Jihadist complex?”

    I’m no expert on Pakistan but I trust you have read the details provided by other posters on these threads.

    What I see of Pakistan fits the larger picture of what happens when a rogue super-state and it’s acolytes interfere with strategically important or resource rich parts of our world.

    Since the Second World War, the United States has:

    1) Attempted to overthrow more than 50 governments, most of them democratically elected.
    2) Attempted to suppress a populist or national movement in 20 countries.
    3) Grossly interfered in democratic elections in at least 30 countries.
    4) Dropped bombs on the people of more than 30 countries.
    5) Attempted to assassinate more than 50 foreign leaders.

    More detail from Pilger, who paints the big picture well here:

  99. What happens next when a huge city like Detroit goes bankrupt?

    Detroit becomes largest US city to file for bankruptcy
    Detroit has lost a quarter of a million residents in the past decade
    The US city of Detroit in Michigan has become the largest American city ever to file for bankruptcy, with debts of at least $15bn (£10bn).

    State-appointed emergency manager Kevyn Orr asked a federal judge to place the city into bankruptcy protection.

    The population is 713,000.

  100. Ah … first broadcast 2006. I thought it was new.

  101. resident dissident

    18 Jul, 2013 - 10:32 pm

    “Craig on RTE Radio 1 right now.
    A programme about Whistleblowers”

    Perhaps he might wish to talk about the Putin and the Party of Thieves and Crooks treatment of Navalny – unlike anyone else here. Or is Navalny the wrong kind of whistleblower?

  102. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 10:35 pm

    Putin repeats a warning to Snowden. The US has been rattling the Olympic boycott. Carter tried it with disastrous results. He had some sense of integrity, as opposed to the Biznessman Obama.

  103. Welcome back, Craig.

    Has anybody ever told you that you have a somewhat dry – though still cutting – sense of humour?

    … Cheered me up, no end, tonight.

  104. “The “McDonald’s Budget”: Laughably Unrealistic But Also Deeply Tragic”

  105. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 11:11 pm

  106. resident dissident 18 Jul, 2013 – 10:32 pm

    “Perhaps he might wish to talk about the Putin and the Party of Thieves and Crooks treatment of Navalny – unlike anyone else here. Or is Navalny the wrong kind of whistleblower?”

    Instead of telling other people what they ought to be talking about, perhaps YOU might like to talk about Navalny. Make it interesting and you might attract some responses. That’s the way it works.

  107. Obama’s UN pick vows push for Israeli seat on Security Council.
    Of course white women cannot speak with forked tongue…

    (Hint)”I will never apologize for America,”

    Perhaps an offering of remorse; mea culpa Samantha, may just give thousands of children in Iraq, trauma imbued orphans; in pain; blistered from ill fitting prosthetics; continually bleeding from badly treated burns; contorted; crippled; scared and mutilated – – that small spark of hope, that outstretched hand, that motherly caress that signals comfort, warmth and ease.

  108. “Perhaps he might wish to talk about the Putin and the Party of Thieves and Crooks treatment of Navalny – unlike anyone else here. ”

    I fear you’re wasting your time RD. It would upset the anti-west weltanschauung around here to acknowledge that evil exists outside of the US/UK/Israel axis and their associated sphere of influence. This is also the country considered by Wikileaks to be an ideal refuge for Edward Snowden so consequently must be the very paragon of an open and fair society.

  109. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 11:26 pm

    “That’s the way it works.”

    I, too am interested Resident. I know you are capable. Go out on a limb. I won’t saw it off.

  110. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    18 Jul, 2013 - 11:44 pm

  111. whack that Piñata

    19 Jul, 2013 - 12:04 am

    Panama grabbed Robert Lady, US government torturer and fugitive from Italian justice. He’s just small fry. He’ll sing like a canary and then any country that goes by the Princeton Principles can start rolling up the USG crime-against-humanity syndicate, right up to Cheney, Bush, and Obama.

    What a priceless response to US extradition demands for Snowden: Hey, sorry about Lady, but what can we do? Aut dedere aut judicare, right?

    At this point does anybody doubt that this is an international campaign of public disgrace? Next up, review by the Human Rights Committee; the Committee against Torture on deck; Pakistan’s charges of aggression in the offing… UN special procedures piggybacking on the rest. The last time the world got together like this, the spooks had to give them Nixon’s scalp.

    The deep state is prepared: their spokesmodel Barack Obama was born to be a scapegoat. They surveilled his ass and vetted him and plucked him from obscurity to take the blame for CIA cadres Cheney and Bush.

  112. Still here then? Well done that bloke. ;O)

  113. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 12:39 am

    frackin’ beyootifull…

    “PANAMA CITY—A former CIA base chief convicted in the 2003 abduction of a terror suspect from an Italian street has been detained in Panama after Italy requested his arrest in one of the most notorious episodes of the U.S. program known as extraordinary rendition, Italian and Panamanian officials said Thursday.
    Robert Seldon Lady, the former CIA chief in Milan, entered Panama, crossed the border into Costa Rica and was sent back to Panama where he was detained, according to an Italian official familiar with Italy’s investigation of the rendition of Cleric Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the case.
    A Panamanian National Police official said Lady, 59, had been detained Wednesday on the Costa Rica-Panama border. The official also spoke on condition of anonymity due to lack of authorization to discuss the matter.

    Read more: Panama holds ex-CIA station chief in rendition – The Denver Post
    Read The Denver Post’s Terms of Use of its content:
    Follow us: @Denverpost on Twitter | Denverpost on Facebook

  114. “Watergate Bugging-again
    Newly released wiretap list raises questions on ’72 break-in”

  115. Consciousness in motion Ben – the power of intention. It’s eeazy man!

  116. whack that Piñata

    19 Jul, 2013 – 12:04 am

    Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 – 12:39 am

  117. whack that Piñata

    19 Jul, 2013 - 1:48 am

    Someone, Watergate was CIA purging its puppet ruler,

    The genocidal bombing of Cambodia got removed from the impeachment articles but the message went out loud and clear, “Oops, won’t happen again, bad apples, don’t you know, &c &c.”

    c.f. now, the bumbling burglary of Aurelia Fedenisn’s lawyer. Congress roughs up NSA, and news reports consistently repeat that it’s ‘the administration’ being denounced. Almost as if NSA gives a shit what Obama thinks about their programs. Crash dummy Barack Obama is belted in and ready to go!

  118. “Congress roughs up NSA”

    whack that Piñata,

    Yes, as you say. It looks good to the public…The truth though is that NOTHING is going to change, well, with all that info they have, what do they have on EVERY member of “Congress” ?. I have always said that blackmail played its role in forming the UK coalition government. “Knowledge is Power”.

  119. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 5:38 am

    @ Villager

    “Credit to Flaming June to attempt a reply, but sorry, not good enough. I’d recommend her to try harder except she hasn’t a basis. I almost fell for her implication that Power would be pushing Israel for a permanent seat!”

    That is precisely why I thought it useful to spell out the position in more detail. Whether intentionally or not, her post had the potential to mislead.

    Re her “reply”, I should say two things

    1/. whether or not Palestinians have ever talked about “sweeping Israel into the sea”, this expression was common currency amoung the neighbouring Arab STATES for decades (although no longer, I believe). I did not mention the former Iranian President.

    2/. whether Israel has declared its borders or not is irrelevant to its legitimacy under international law.

  120. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:11 am

    Guardian comply with B.Liar’s request to print this.

    Tony Blair slaps down David Cameron over Lynton Crosby comparison

    Former prime minister’s spokesman says nobody can ‘seriously compare’ his work as Middle East envoy to that of lobbyist

    Nicholas Watt, chief political correspondent
    The Guardian, Thursday 18 July 2013 19.27 BST

    ‘Middle East Envoy’ LOL

  121. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:23 am

    re Israel as a possible non-permanent member of the Security Council

    Well, having disposed of a certain commenter’s potentially misleading post on the above, I started thinking about human rights and, deciding that I needed a good laugh early in the morning, checked out the membership of the UN Commission on Human Rights in the last year of its existence (2005 – replaced by the UN Council on Human Rights from 2006).

    Readers will be pleased to learn that the following paragons of human rights were members in 2005:

    Egypt, Eritrea, Guinea (Conakry), Qatar, Ukraine…

    and most egregiously :

    Zimbabwe, China, Pakistan, Russian Federation, Cuba.


  122. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:30 am

    Just a few years ago my train fare for an off peak return to London used to be under a tenner. Yesterday I handed over a £20 note and got a £1 change.

    I read this:

    Five rail bosses on £11m gravy train: Three-year pay and bonus deal ‘is a reward for failure’
    Network Rail executives could share £5million bonuses on top of their six-figure salaries
    The five bosses earn between £348,000 and £577,000 a year
    Taxpayer-funded firm faces £75million fine for missing punctuality targets
    Shadow transport secretary Maria Eagle condemned the move as commuters face rising train fares

    On the train home, every seat in the carriage had an A5 printed sheet folded into three from Mr Tim Shoveller (sic) the MD of Stagecoach SouthWest Trains Ltd promising bigger and better things to come.

    His company have merged with Network Rail to form The Alliance. Not sure if this is a financial arrangement or purely a PR exercise.

    I read that Mathewson, ex chair of the failed Royal Bank of Scotland which we bailed out with £38billion, has just left Stagecoach with a handshake. Mathewson preceded Fred Goodwin as CEO of RBS and then became chairman.

    They are all in IT together.

  123. @Jon – can you check , it appears Kempe might be a sayanese twin conjoined with one other at the same herzliya IP address? Could be a Villager, Habba, Giles or RD. Really if they like to hifive each others posts like the FIVE “hava nagila” dancing israelis of the NY car park of 911 fame, they should be at HuffPo or the Guardian.

  124. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:38 am

    Not all in IT together but in dire straits are those interviewed in this World Service programme which I heard earlier this morning, Poor souls. It is harrowing to hear grown men and women break down.

    Welfare Britain – the New Reality
    Duration: 29 minutes
    First broadcast:Thursday 18 July 2013
    The system by which people in Britain receive state support is undergoing radical reform. The current complex raft of benefits, which include housing, unemployment and family support are being capped and streamlined.

    The government – led by a coalition of Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties – says that the current system is unaffordable and that the changes are designed to encourage people back to work. But critics of the new system argue that it fails to tackle underlying issues such as the difficulty of finding work and cost of living differences across the country.

    One of the most controversial reforms is the reduction in housing support for those living in accommodation with spare rooms – the so-called bedroom tax. Since April, when the reforms began to take effect, Nina Robinson has been spending time with London families affected by the changes. She meets Emmanuel and Tya who have been living with their children in overcrowded conditions. They think it is fair that people who have spare bedrooms should be made to downsize to smaller homes, so that families like theirs can benefit. But she also meets 60 year old Fred, who says his back problems prevent him from working and that he is being forced out of his home. 29mins

    Rent arrears are growing.

  125. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 7:14 am

    @ Jon/Mod

    “@Jon – can you check , it appears Kempe might be a sayanese twin conjoined with one other at the same herzliya IP address? Could be a Villager, Habba, Giles or RD.”

    Yes, please check and report back for the sake of Hasbarista’s peace of mind :)

  126. Sofia Kibo Noh

    19 Jul, 2013 - 8:25 am

    @Ben. 11 44pm


    An Open Letter to the Media 
    Dan Hellinger, Webster University,Forrest Hylton, Harvard University and Steve Striffler, University of New Orleans

    “…media distortions of the state of democracy and press freedoms in countries that are routinely condemned by the U.S. Government such as Venezuela and Ecuador – contribute to a climate of demonization that enables U.S. aggression against those countries and damages relations between the people of the U.S. and our foreign neighbours.”

    This is why Narrative matters and why those who craft false narratives need to be held to account. Remember Lord Haw Haw?

    A last word from Terry Pratchett.
    “It can take a violent wrench for a person to free themselves from the weight of narrativity.”

  127. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 8:29 am

    More on the subject of universal jurisdiction and this government’s special treatment for visiting officials from the Israeli entity. cf HMG’s treatment of Abu Qatada, incarcerated and never charged with anything, on whose deportation many £millions were spent over 10 years.

    Britain re-writes diplomatic protocol to protect Israeli officials
    Ben White Friday, 12 July 2013 14:42 – See more at:

  128. “Readers will be pleased to learn that the following paragons of human rights were members in 2005:”

    And all of them put together don’t have a record as bad as this:

    or this:

  129. Sofia Kibo Noh

    19 Jul, 2013 - 8:48 am

    Israel’s academics get the power of narrative too.

    “The main idea is that this is about how to use the new media to reclaim Israel’s narrative and promote Israel’s point of view” (“Haifa U course teaches web hasbara strategies,” 13 March 2012).

    More here.

  130. Personally I think Hasbarista and Kempe are the same person. Each feeds the other’s overt agenda perfectly.

    Since we’ve returned to the perpetual running sore that is Israel, this, today:

    Yeah. As if they’ll take a blind bit of notice, absent any realistic sanctions.

    On the face of it, this is the problem, as usual. No preconditions like easing the economic stranglehold:

    But what the US hasn’t allowed itself to realise yet is that Israel has no intention of agreeing to any kind of permanent or contiguous Palestinian state West of the Jordan. Its policy is to continue carving up the West Bank into ever smaller disconnected Palestinian enclaves set, like raisins in a fruit cake, in the indigestible stodge of the settlements. It will stall, obfuscate, make impossible conditions, keep the Palestinians in a state of simmering hatred that precludes rational behaviour, and play the victim card energetically to ensure that the US cannot make any realistic contribution – even if AIPAC wanted it to – except that very handy $3Bn annually the US taxpayer sets aside for what he fondly believes are his friends in Tel Aviv. And nearly as much again to keep the Egyptian Army sweet.

    No need for a link to support this hypothesis. Israel’s actions have repeatedly confirmed it for decades.

  131. Your link @ 0848 seems to be down, Sofia – page not found. But this one tells a similar story:

  132. This needs a good hard push to get it going. The middle-class pips are squeaking in Israel:

    And that’s where revolutions come from.

  133. Sofia Kibo Noh

    19 Jul, 2013 - 9:30 am

    Thanks Komodo.

    My link should have taken you to a 15 July article pretty much updating yours.

    Both full of further interesting links.

  134. And thank you, Sofia. Bang up to date. Contains a reference to your earlier comment too!

    “arm the students with the latest surveys and data and to teach them how to present the Israeli narrative”

    If it’s any comfort, Wiki has this snippet:

    Along with exposition, argumentation, and description, narration, broadly defined, is one of four rhetorical modes of discourse. More narrowly defined, it is the fiction-writing mode whereby the narrator communicates directly to the reader.

  135. You read it here first: Snowden may encounter problems if he tries to enter Kazakh airspace on the way to Vladivostok.

  136. Craig – Delighted to have you back and ticker ticking well. As well as the illogicality of the LibDem position on Trident[except that it probably makes senses in internal party politics terms, rather than in the real world], please cast your eye over the latest example of spurious statistics : the claim that the 2012 Olympics boosted the UK economy by £10 billion.

    I cannot conceive of any reputable economist [a rather restricted category, I admit] finding that the 2012 bread and circuses did anything other than damage the economy and the environment, while undoubtedly giving vicarious pleasure and excitement to many live spectators and couch potatoes; and a huge sense of achievement – and rewards – to many elite athletes.

    I was at the launch last night of Mark Perryman (ed) London 2012 – How was it for us?, Lawrence and Wishart, 2013. That analyses well the murky political and ideological underpinnings of the highly corrupt IOC; and how land and waters of considerable value for London’s health was filched and degraded, with huge net losses in terms of local amenities.
    In one aspect, the Olympics are like Cruft’s Dog Show, a display of freaks, shaped by diets, drugs and training into shapes and speeds that “conform” to a pattern that no normal sane person would wish to have. I think (but others can perhaps provide supporting evidence, that both pedigree dogs and elite athletes have shorter lifespans and often suffer in their later years from crippling deformities.

  137. N_ why would he be going to vladivostok? Whats up?

  138. Whoops –

    Mr Ward, MP for Bradford East, wrote on his website in January that he was “saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could within a few years of liberation from the death camps, be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new State of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza”.

    This led to a complaint to the Lib Dems from the Holocaust Educational Trust.

    At the weekend, Mr Ward posted a tweet, asking: “Am I wrong or are am I right? At long last the #Zionists are losing the battle – how long can the #apartheid State of #Israel last?”

    Lib Dem whip withdrawn from this evil person. Lib Dems aren’t allowed to have opinions. Especially…

    Let’s deconstruct it:
    1. Not denying but acknowledging the horror of the holocaust. Check.

    2. Ongoing atrocities: Documented fully. Maybe not quite daily, in a good week.

    3. Alleges “Zionists losing the battle”. Obviously refers to Zionists as opposed to non-Zionists within Israel. Zionism is not a term of abuse, but a description of a political position, widely held by Christians as well as Jews. It is acknowledged to be the creed of Israel’s current leaders. Whether they are losing or not is either a statement of fact which he is prepared to back or a personal opinion. Either is fully admissible.

    4. “Apartheid state” – the evidence again favours this interpretation. Israel has repeatedly been described as such, for instance by a South African, who should know, in 2002:

    Once again, this is at best a valid point of view. At worst it is the unalloyed truth.

    So what’s with the brouhaha?

  139. I agree with you Iain Orr. No visible sign of ‘legacy’ in Surrey except for cycling. The residents around Box Hill and rhose who live along narrow lanes in the area known as the Surrey Hills, are fed up with cycle races and triathlons held since the Limp Ics which entail road closures for a complete day, or days. A Ms Helyn Cleck of Surrey CC promoted the Limp Ics cycling and takes all the credit. She claims great economic gains for Surrey with another of those figures in £millions snatched out of the air. Surrey CC also employed an officer in the year preceding the games, specifically to promote them games. Two councillors resigned when it was revealed they had a company promoting tourism connected to the Games!

    Surrey CC did not answer a FoI request on the cost of the torch relay through the county saying that the cost was paid by individual boroughs and councils. Good get out there SCC. This was their share:
    Road Closures
    Surrey County Council have to date spent the following on the Torch Relay
    in Surrey – £126,232.38. broken down as follows:

    • Traffic Orders £18,800
    • Signs £101,428.38
    • Traffic Mgt £4,228.00
    • Tow Away £1,776.00
    Branded Bunting
    Branded bunting approx £5000 paid from a central government grant.
    Other Associated Costs
    As the County Council were not the principal leads on this event we are
    only hold cost information in relation to the Torch for those elements the
    County Council delivered.

    Perhaps the bunting now residing in someone’s shed will come out when the royal offspring is delivered. Every lamp post in this borough had an Olympic banner attached with that strange font and in those weird muddy colours. Expensive ephemera.

    Anyway Coe, LOCOG and G4S did well out of it and didn’t Tessa Jowell get a gong too?

  140. More discussion on Ms Power and her husband Cass Sunstein. Israel is in Western Europe apparently.

    Obama’s UN pick vows push for Israeli seat on Security Council

  141. Anyone found the plot? This guy’s mislaid it…

    Throwing-toys-out-of-pram department.

  142. Komodo
    19 Jul, 2013 – 9:08 am

    Agreed Komodo – an excellent flicking of the tongue. But is the European Union really gonna get tough?

  143. Mark – don’t think it matters, although Israel’s howling the place down over this, as of any other criticism of its current policies. The important thing is that the big guns are onside (and you will note that the big guns’ bitch, the UK, is politely standing aside from this one) and will help remove all impediments to Israels’ G-d given right to steal land. In fact, as this helps to consolidate the ME as US sphere-of-influence, Europe is probably shooting itself in the foot. France remains on the pro-Israeli side of ambiguous, and Germany sells the buggers submarines. I suspect that European intransigence probably results from the perception that there is some shit even an EU voter will not take. Though seeing aid projects by the EU for Palestinians being bulldozed, and NGO’s being banned, certainly doesn’t help.

    Sorry to be pessimistic, but it’s hard to avoid.


    Three former NSA employees who also found themselves in the manure for telling the truth comment interestingly on Snowden here:

  144. David Ward, currently without his party’s whip as a result of injudiciously mentioning Israel without the required expressions of adoration (see mine @ 1117 today), has actually been to the West Bank on a five-day trip. His first day made him optimistic. That changed:

    See what they’re doing there?

  145. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 12:44 pm

    “Britain re-writes diplomatic protocol to protect Israeli officials
    Ben White Friday, 12 July 2013 14:42 – See more at:

    Thank you to Flaming June for posting this article, which confirms what I wrote in my post on universal jurisdiction the other day in order to correct the misleading impression given by her on the subject in her own post.

    However, the title of this article is also slightly misleading when compared to the text of the article (which I suspect many will not bother to read properly): it gives the impression that there is a law, or legislation, on Special Mission status which the UK govt has now changed. This is of course not the case; now as before, the FCO uses its prerogative in the granting of Special Mission status, no more and no less.

    By the way, I haven’t yet seen an apology from her for (inadvertently, I’m sure) misleading readers.

    And this also from F.J :

    “HMG’s treatment of Abu Qatada, incarcerated and never charged with anything, on whose deportation many £millions were spent over 10 years.”

    That, my dear, is the price (unfortunately) of allowing people like Mr Qatada full and due process. A full and due process which I doubt certain other states, seemingly much admired on this blog, would have given him :)

  146. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 12:52 pm

    @ Komodo (09h08) opines

    “Personally I think Hasbarista and Kempe are the same person. Each feeds the other’s overt agenda perfectly.”

    Yes, it must be rather disquieting for Komodo and consorts to realise that more and more people are speaking out against the received ‘wisdom’ peddled with such obsessive regularity on every thread. And thereby seeing through Komodo and consorts :)

  147. Any self respecting country demanding a seat on the UN should have it examined. But they have to abide by the rules that exist, i.e. you are a country under UN rules if you have declared borders.

    Further, any country that has flouted UN rules and resolution for more than 300 times, should never be allowed to sit on any board.

    What cheek, don’t want to play the communitarian game that rule world affairs, but want to have a say in issues that are non of their business, typical.

    However much you vow/protest Habby, you have no argument, nor have you showed anybody anything.

  148. David Ward’s fourth day in the bastion of democracy and justice was also illuminating. From his West Bank Diary, again:

    Today we meet Mark Regev, the Israeli Prime Minister’s Spokesman who once said “the test of democracy is how you treat people incarcerated, people in jail, and especially so with minors”. These words have to stand alongside the evidence we heard yesterday from an Australian lawyer who offers support to the Palestinian children who the IDF take by force in the early hours of the morning.

    The young people, maybe 15 or 16 years old are blind-folded, handcuffed with cable-ties and thrown into the back of vans and often kept in this state for several hours. The children then find themselves without support from family or legal representation in an interrogation room without any advice on their rights.

    The coercive interrogation that follows is often accompanied by verbal abuse and physical threats leading to a “confession” written in a language they cannot read.

    It might be another 8 days before the young person appears in Court and this may be the first time they have seen their parents or a lawyer since they were arrested. The “crime” is usually stone-throwing.

    A young Israeli accused of a crime would not be forcefully taken by the Military and would have the right to be accompanied to the Police station by their parents. The case would be dealt with immediately and the young Israeli would be entitled to full legal representation.

    Today we shall see if Mr. Regev believes that his Government adequately meets his own test.

    Mark Regev is on a par with Iraq’s Comical Ali as a source of enjoyment. This was his reply, from Day Five (ibid)

    The message that was repeated was that the Israelis were willing to engage in negotiations “any time, any day” (* -K) and that nothing would be excluded from the negotiations. We pointed out that the expansion of the settlements and indeed so many of the hatred-provoking activities carried out by Israelis, that we had witnessed first-hand, did not provide any firm basis for negotiations.

    The illegality of the settlements was refuted – “how can it be illegal for Jews to return to Hebron?” And most of the other activities such as child prisoners, the barriers and denied access were defended on the basis of security.

    * Except if the other side is there – K

  149. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 1:02 pm

  150. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 1:05 pm

    Could the poster at 12.44pm not patronize me by using the sexist term ‘my dear’. That I am certainly not.

  151. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 1:11 pm

    Oops! The privatised water industry get worried about their asset (ie our water) being contaminated and give Fracker Gideon a warning. Frack off! I should hazard a guess that it was not in the plan.

  152. Thanks Komodo, Mark Golding, Sofia for the links.

    Poor David Ward, he is suffering because he has not genuflected low enough and he shall pay for his infraction. Although as outlined by Komodo, David Ward not committed any kind of “trope”, and only reaffirmed the sufferings, and has gone onto exploring the fact that those whom have suffered the most will always prove to be the most compassionate. Despite this David Ward has lost the whip, and this is telling of the extent of corruption that is currently surrounding the affairs concerning the running open sore on the buttock of humanity; the shitty strip of land.

    Regards the EU and its current stance, as the US is heading down the U bend there will be more of an “independent Europe” approach to come. US sphere of influence, what influence?

  153. Thanx for USA Today. We learn that Binney has not entirely shed his NSA brainwashing. He hasn’t realized that NSA interference in the privacy of Chinese civilians is just as illegal as NSA spying on US civilians. Article 17 is the best-kept secret of all.

    Also notable is the absence of Russ Tice, who supplies crucial information about one purpose of NSA privacy crimes: blackmail and kompromat of public officials for positive deep-state control. It’s not just for vindictive prosecution of domestic dissidents. You can’t talk about the USA’s fake democracy yet, or how the Stasi pulls the strings.

  154. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 1:36 pm

    Well well!

    the usual anti-Israeli posts (time and effort no object!) but….silence about the 5 years handed out to Alexander Navalny ….in Moscow.

    Still, it’s only just after noon UK time; I’ve no doubt I shall see lots of indignation and outrage by close of play this evening.

    Indignation and outrage at the US and the West for having put Navalny up to it, I expect.

  155. The US isn’t Detroit, Passerby. And Detroit’s in better nick than a lot of ME towns…

    When the US heads down the U-bend, not only will it have a smaller military (maybe third biggest rather than second biggest after China) but its kit will be made somewhere else. I’ll believe you then.

    No offence, and sorry to sound like the Senator for Pisspatch, AR (R) but them’s the facts.

  156. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 1:38 pm

    [Mod/Jon: post just to attack another poster, removed]

  157. Raises an interesting question, this:

    If the Gazans somehow get rid of Hamas, as at least some of them would certainly like to do, and if they had a democratic election, would Israel be any more likely to recognise the winner than it was last time?

    This is a rhetorical question.

  158. No offence, and sorry to sound like the Senator for Pisspatch, AR (R) but them’s the facts.

    ROFL thanks for the smile Komodo. Further I agree about some of the cities in the mid east being in a far worse shape than Detroit. However, given the steady decline/deterioration of the US internal infrastructure and its increasing burden of keeping a large military, and the budgets thereof. Won’t you agree these are similar metrics to the USSR before its demise?

  159. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 2:11 pm

    From Nevermind at 12h53 :

    “Any self respecting country demanding a seat on the UN should have it examined. But they have to abide by the rules that exist, i.e. you are a country under UN rules if you have declared borders.”

    I should have thought that the remaining Eminences would have become more cautious after the rebukes and corrections I have had to hand out recently to Herbie and Flaming June regarding certain points of international (and even UK) law.

    Now it appears that Nevermind – perhaps emboldened by the “dissertation” he proudly informed us about recently – is having a shot at misleading readers.

    I’m assuming that Nevermind is claiming that to be a member of the UN a state needs to have declared its borders (if he means something else, then he could perhaps express himself more clearly).

    Now, if you consult the UN Charter itself, you’ll find a Chapter II, entitled “Membership”. The Chapter contains four articles, numbered 3 to 6.

    Strangely, enough, none of those articles seems to mention the question of borders, whether declared or not.


    I’m at a loss to think where else I might find international law on UN membership other than in the Charter, but I”m sure that Nevermind will be able to help me out and cite the international law which backs up his statement.

    Thank you in advance.

  160. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 2:18 pm

    I thought Michael Winner was dead.

  161. Up to a point, Passerby, yes. But there’s a long way to go. If/when the US enters another of its cyclical periods of insularity, it will be able to cut out half the military/overseas interference budget and concentrate on internal investment and regaining a share of the consumer market currently lost to the Chinese. It has fracking as an energy backstop, and it will be less dependent on its desert friends. (Detroit will be treated as an awful warning rather than an inevitable process if they have any sense. Detroit has been dead for a long time – since the Orientals started building much better vehicles – its reflex convulsions postponed the official diagnosis.) I think business interests will determine the course of the next couple of decades in the US, rather than gung-ho Republican rednecks. But it might start quietly. And it still has to get worse before it gets better.

    Crystal balls, maybe. But no harm in speculating.

  162. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 2:28 pm

    Thought you might like to see this message from Michael Mansfield QC.


    There remain an increasing number of cases in which the truth has
    yet to be uncovered. Lockerbie, Hilda Murrell, Lawrence, Pat Finucane, Dr Kelly
    and many more. There is an urgent need for a permanent truth commission to
    investigate these in the way the Hillsborough Independent panel did for the
    families and friends of those 96 killed in football stadium disaster.

    The manner and mode of Dr Kelly’s death along with the surrounding circumstances were not directly addressed by the Hutton Inquiry which was myopic. There has been no effective Inquest either which is yet another sleight of hand by the authorities. The reasoning is vacuous and arrogant. Basically no need.

    Perseverance patience and persistence will win the day. The forces
    of darkness bank on people fading away. But, then, they live on another

    May the force be with you.

    Michael Mansfield QC

  163. 14. Admission of Israel to the United Nations, General Assembly Resolution 273 (III), 11 May 1949:

    In the fall of 1948, Israel had applied for membership in the United Nations but failed to win the necessary majority in the Security Council. In the spring of 1949, the application was renewed This time, armistice agreements having been signed between Israel and Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon, Israel was admitted by 37 votes in favour, 12 against, with 9 abstentions. The text of the Resolution of admission follows:

    Having received the report of the Security Council on the application of Israel for membership in the United Nations,

    Noting that, in the judgment of the Security Council, Israel is a peace-loving State and is able and willing to carry out the obligations contained in the Charter,

    Noting that the Security Council has recommended to the General Assembly that it admit Israel to membership in the United Nations,

    Noting furthermore the declaration by the State of Israel that it “unreservedly accepts the obligations of the United Nations Charter and undertakes to honour them from the day when it becomes a Member of the United Nations”,

    Recalling its resolutions of 29 November 1947 and 11 December 1948 and taking note of the declarations and explanations made by the representatives of the Government of Israel before the Ad Hoc Political Committee in respect of the implementation of the said resolutions,

    The General Assembly

    Acting in discharge of its functions under Article 4 of the Charter and rule 125 of its rules of procedure,

    1. Decides that Israel is a peace-loving State which accepts the obligations contained in the Charter and is able and willing to carry out those obligations;

    2. Decides to admit Israel to membership in the United Nations.

    Not sure if this link is up to date, you kinda lose track…

  164. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 2:37 pm

    From the very excellent Scottish writer and activist, John Hilley.

    The gist of his complaint to the BBC –

    To BBC Trust (updated correspondence) on selective use of Iraq war death figures

    Letter to BBC Trust requesting full consideration of complaint regarding BBC’s selective presentation of Iraq Body Count (IBC) figures and issue of editorial decision-making:

    Ref: CAS-2109403-3PN7BB


    BBC Editorial Trust

    This is a formal request to have my second stage complaint considered by the BBC Trust.

    Following my initial enquiry and a subsequent reply to the points raised, I believe that no serious or satisfactory consideration of my concerns has been offered.

    The essence of my complaint can be gleaned from the correspondence to date, which reads as follows:


  165. “There is an urgent need for a permanent truth commission…”

    Waste of time; because when it reveals the boring truth the conspiracy theorists will still whine about cover-ups and whitewashing.

    Jon:- By all means confirm that I’m nobody except who I say I am, sorry to disappoint certain people but that’s the boring truth as well.

  166. Someone’s on the wrong side of ‘international legitimacy’, it seems.

    Former Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami thinks so, anyway.


  167. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 4:02 pm

    MIT, or the man behind the curtain?

    As a professional law-enforcement officer of 25 years, I believe that the image that was portrayed by Rolling Stone magazine was an insult to any person who has every worn a uniform of any color or any police organization or military branch, and the family members who have ever lost a loved one serving in the line of duty.

  168. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 4:04 pm

    Ignore the 4:02

    MIT, or it’s handlers?

  169. Another day, another thread derailed by the Murrayistas as they bore everyone to death with all things Israel.

    Komodo is fighting allegations that he is obsessed with Israel, by becoming even more obsessed with Israel.

    Meanwhile, Mary has done her usual routine, starting the day early with the usual “poor souls” posting from the BBC.

    And Fedup/Passerby is banging on about the “shitty strip of land”.

    Etc., etc.

  170. You are perfectly at liberty to skip past my posts, Anon. As I usually do yours.

    But today I am interested in who comes out of their holes to protest. Thank you for your support.

    Phone a friend…

    BTW, any of the excrescences wish to add their congratulations to Craig on his recovery to those of the murrayistas? No? Poor show. Bad form.

  171. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 4:26 pm

    I hope this is a trend…

    “(Reuters) – Russia unexpectedly freed opposition leader Alexei Navalny on bail on Friday, bending to the will of thousands of protesters who denounced his five-year jail sentence as a crude attempt by President Vladimir Putin to silence him.

    In a highly unusual ruling that points to Kremlin uncertainty over how to handle Navalny’s case and new protests, a judge approved the prosecution request to free him pending his appeal so that he can run in a Moscow mayor election on September 8.

    The anti-corruption blogger will be unable to leave Moscow but hailed the decision, a day after he was convicted of theft, as a victory for people power. Experts said it was unprecedented for the prosecution to seek bail on such terms after sentencing.

  172. I congratulated Craig on his recovery in the last thread, Komodo. Not that I should be taking any advice on “form” from the “ding-dong” brigade!

  173. Habby @6.23am argues that there’s no reason Israel shouldn’t be a permanent member of the UN Security Council, because there are other dubious entities enrolled.

    Not exactly the greatest defense one might make of Israel, but then I remember that Israel makes a similar argument when presented with evidence of its crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.

    The Israelis simply claim that because the US, Australia and Europe ethnically cleansed various unfortunate natives they came across then, Israel can do it too!

    Nothing like embarrassing your friends, eh. Be interesting to see how well that works out.

  174. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 4:36 pm

    “You are perfectly at liberty to skip past my posts, Anon”

    An underused and highly underrated strategy, Komo :)

  175. Komodo, why do you dignify the twerps with an answer?

    These cretins are to be abhorred.

  176. non-permanent member.

    Let’s at least be grateful for that.

  177. [Mod/Jon: unwelcome commentary on another poster, removed; please keep it constructive]

  178. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 4:43 pm

    Free speech does not imply a right to dialogue.

  179. “This pretty much guts national security journalism in the states in which it matters.”

    4th Circuit rules reporter’s privilege doesn’t exist, NYT’s James Risen must testify

  180. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 5:12 pm

    @ Herbie

    “Not exactly the greatest defense one might make of Israel, but then I remember that Israel makes a similar argument when presented with evidence of its crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.

    The Israelis simply claim that because the US, Australia and Europe ethnically cleansed various unfortunate natives they came across then, Israel can do it too!”

    Interesting – but somewhat surprising – to learn from Herbie that Israel has claimed that it has engaged in ethnic cleansing but that it is/was OK because others had done the same thing.

    You wouldn’t be able to provide a source for that claim of yours, would you? Preferably from Osrael itself, since you claim that it’s their assertion.

    Thank you;

  181. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 5:45 pm

    Osrael Is that Zionost supporting Australia whose new PM is sending all illegal immigrants to the heavenly Papua New Guines to be given the once over?

    Mr Rudd must be greatly admired by the Tory boys and girls in this country and envied for having PNG on his doorstep.

  182. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 5:48 pm

    Explosive device after explosive device. Arsonist after arsonist. We have some nice types living amongst us. Any of them getting their collars felt?

    Wolverhampton Mosque: Explosion debris found at site

  183. Flaming June

    19 Jul, 2013 - 5:57 pm

    Bravo to brave Bradley Manning.

    Regarding the request to sign the Nobel Peace Prize petition, would Bradley Manning accept a prize from the same outfit who awarded one to Obomber? I think not.

    ‘Bradley Manning wins 2013 Sean MacBride Peace Award by the International Peace Bureau
    Posted by The Editors on July 19, 2013, 5:09 pm

    U.S. whistleblower and international hero Bradley Manning has just been awarded the 2013 Sean MacBride Peace Award by the International Peace Bureau, itself a former recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, for which Manning is a nominee this year.

    A petition supporting Manning for the Nobel Peace Prize has gathered 88,000 signatures, many of them with comments, and is aiming for 100,000 before delivering it to the Norwegian Nobel Committee in Oslo. Anyone can sign and add their comments at ‘

    (ex Medialens)

  184. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:03 pm

    @ Komodo (14h28)

    You really shouldn’t tangle woth people who know what they’re talking about.

    Where, in that General Assembly Resolution on Israel’s admission to the UN, is there a mention of Israel having or needing declared borders?

    This is what I was asking Nevermind about.

    I note that he has not aanswered and that your ‘answer’ is not in fact an answer to the question neing asked.

    BTW, Article 1 of the Resultion on Israel’s admission, part of which you lovingly set out in bold, is a standard article which is contained in every General Assembly Resolution which admits a new member to the UN. It simply refers back to Chapter II, Article 4, para 1 of the UN Charter.

  185. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:08 pm

    “Bradley Manning has just been awarded the 2013 Sean MacBride Peace Award”


    Is that the Sean MacBride who was once an active IRA member or another Sean MacBride?

  186. Explosive device after explosive device. Arsonist after arsonist. We have some nice types living amongst us. Any of them getting their collars felt?

    Wolverhampton Mosque: Explosion debris found at site

    Well the explosion has been accepted to be the result of a bomb and not a fire cracker, as a first step!!

    Police believe the device may have been planted on the evening of 27 June, before going off the next morning. Although people reported hearing a loud bang at the time, the location of the explosion was not discovered until specialist teams came to investigate last night.

    Seeing as it has taken “only” two weeks for the police to accept the “loud bang” was in fact a bomb!

    If a loud cracker were to go off in the vicinity of another religions place of worship. The RAF would have been called to shoot down the approaching aircraft whilst the army had cordoned off the whole town that it was in, and the police were rounding up every Muslim in sight, all the while the medjia screaming their tits off about the inhumanity of the anti-this and anti-that.

  187. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:12 pm

    re Alexander Navalny and his five-year stretch :

    18h11 English time and just one post so far (Ben Franklin).

    Expressing not indignation at the sentence on the Russian whistleblower but informing us that he’s been let out on bail pending his appeal.


    La vita è bella, life is good (indignation for Snowden, indifference for Navalny)

  188. Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:18 pm

    Further re Sean MacBride:

    But I’ll happily admit he made up for it afterwards.

  189. It’s called, “holding Israel to a higher moral standard” than others, particularly the West.

    They also call it “double standards”, and as recently as last week Netanyahu tried to equate it with antisemitism.

    Other have called it, “whataboutery”

    What it means is that you shouldn’t criticize Israel for its crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing because others have done the same before.

    Here’s the succinct version of it:

    “Yes, Strenger agrees, “Israel is guilty of human rights violations in the West Bank,” but those violations are “negligible compared to those perpetrated by any number of states ranging from Iran through Russia to China.”

    Indeed, Strenger asks: What about the U.S? What about Guantanamo? What about the drone program of “targeted assassinations? As long as Hawking and other British academics don’t boycott the U.S., Strenger argued, their double standards are “profoundly hypocritical.””

    Here’s the long version:

    You’ll find many many examples of its use.

  190. “English time,” Habbabkuk. Oh really, so time is English now, is it? I always thought it was mean, green and a witch to boot! Or possibly, Lughnasadh, hot and British.

  191. “La vita è bella, life is good (indignation for Snowden, indifference for Navalny)”

    Habby the “Narrative Brigade” is still trying to figure out how to play this ‘non-standard’ event. Pavlovian reactions are apparently easier than Navalnyian ones.

    Also some people are distracted and worried about chickens and ponies in the ‘heat wave’ (summer). Wait for the Hot August Night!

    Soolaimon-Brother Love Neil Diamond (Hot August Night 1972)

  192. Oh dear.

    Habby, if you’ve problems with Sean MacBride you’ll surely be having even greater problems with those Israeli terrorists who never made up for it and are terrorizing away to this very day!!

  193. Sean MacBride received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1974, the Lenin Peace Prize for 1975–1976 and the UNESCO Silver Medal for Service in 1980. He was a founding member of Amnesty International and served as its International Chairman.

  194. Ben Franklin -Machine Gun Preacher (unleaded version)

    19 Jul, 2013 - 6:39 pm

    Well I thought the government’s response to the protests might prick the conscience of our better Western governments, but keep examining the rat droppings for flea scat.

  195. Ben, this one’s just for you……brother aficionado

  196. “Explosive device after explosive device. Arsonist after arsonist. We have some nice types living amongst us. Any of them getting their collars felt?”

    Asks Mary. But if the suspected arsonists and bombers were Muslim, the Murrayistas would be falling over themselves trying to find a conspiracy. Anomalies would be found, links discovered, narratives questioned, official accounts discredited, questions unanswered, things not adding up, with the overall impression being that no Muslim extremist does anything bad, ever. It’s all a plot by the Mossad, CIA, MI6 and Israel – US, UK, “the West”, are responsible for all evils in the world.

    Not once has Mary ever said “we have some nice types living amongst us” in response to an Islamist terrorist act. And never has a Murrayista questioned any official account that supports their world-view.

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