It's actually way too nice here to sit at a computer blogging which explains why I haven't bothered much lately. But, a couple of items in the past couple of days have caught my attention. And, no, I'm not talking about the Simpsons Movie which was absolutely wonderful; these things are far more surreal than anything Matt Groening and company could have dreamed up.
The first is the announcement this morning that the UN has finally agreed to send 19,000 troops to the Sudan in an effort to stop the murderous arab janjaweed from their genocide on the innocent black Sudanese populace.
The surreal part is: those 19,000 troops will only have a limited role in combat operations and that they will only go if the Sudanese government lives up to its agreement to have them there.
Inasmuch as the Sudanese government is sponsoring the janjaweed and their slaughter, the chance of Khartoum all of a sudden thinking this is a good idea is about as great as Al Gore all of a sudden admitting the polar ice caps aren't melting and the world is cooling off. It ain't gonna happen.
Anyone with half a brain - thereby excluding anyone connected to the UN - knows the only reason the Sudanese government made their so-called "agreement" in the first place was to stall further sanctions and isolation.
What's needed in Sudan is armed intervention with a strict mandate of killing the janjaweed and restoring order. And, if the government falls at the same time, well, one less islamoshithead government on planet Earth would also be good.
But, then, that's not going to happen either, because the West is too busy gazing at its navel to actually intervene and save innocent lives.
The second - even more surreal occurrence - was the US administration's announcement that they're going to beef up arms supplies to Middle East nations Egypt and Saudi Arabia by billions of dollars.
According to Condolleezza Rice, who must ponder which face to wear each day, this will help battle extremism in the ME. Uh, Ms Rice...the Saudis are the main sponsor of extreme Islam around the globe. Sure, they may not announce it loudly as the madmorons of Iran do, but there is simply zero question that radical Islam flourishes because the Saudi wahabbist movement pours money into making it so.
Much more likely is that the Bushies are sending more money to Saudi Arabia because the Saudis have a lot of money invested in the US, the Bushies have always been far too buddy/buddy with the Saudis and they don't want the House of Saud to fall. Unfortunately, George and company are ignoring history yet again. It has long been proven that propping up dictatorships only hurts freedom in the end.
As for Egypt: the US has been giving the Egyptians money for years. And, the US gain from that has been that the Egyptians use the money to foment anti-US sentiment and to crush independent thought in their own country. Yes, that includes radical Islam but it also includes those who promote democracy and human rights.
The Bush White House has completely lost the thread. The best solution at this point - especially with the Sunnis pulling out of Iraq's government - is now: a) to announce that they have done everything they can in Iraq and that the Iraqis have only themselves to blame for the continued violence, b) to announce that they will begin immediately to remove troops from Iraq, c) that the arabs can now solve their own problems, d) to support the only relatively peaceful arabs, the Kurds and a few Gulf States like Dubai and Qatar, and negotiate some kind of solution with Turkey, e) to not send weapons to any arab nation except for Iran and when it sends weapons there, it should be by aggressively dropping them from airplanes and f) giving Israel carte blanche to deal with hostile arabs as it sees fit.
It's about freedom and the future and the vast majority of the arab world is not part of either at this moment in time and probably never will be.