Sunday, July 31, 2005

Soo Sorry

The SIS, that is...

Over the past fortnight Israeli intelligence agents have noticed something distinctly odd happening on the internet. One by one, Al-Qaeda’s affiliated websites have vanished until only a handful remain, write Uzi Mahnaimi and Alex Pell.

Someone has cut the line of communication between the spiritual leaders of international terrorism and their supporters. Since 9/11 the websites have been the main links to disseminate propaganda and information.

The Israelis detect the hand of British intelligence, determined to torpedo the websites after the London attacks of July 7.

One global jihad site terminated recently was an inflammatory Pakistani site, www.mojihedun.com, in which a section entitled How to Strike a European City gave full technical instructions. Tens of similar sites, some offering detailed information on how to build and use biological weapons, have also been shut down. However, Islamic sites believed to be “moderate”, remain.

Avoid Socialist Medicine

Turns out the Brit doctors' union that just got a ruling that its members can kill incompetent patients also provides top-cover for their sexual molestation. Americans can take comfort that their less-than-perfect health care does not sanction murder and rape. Brits need to keep frail and/or sexually vulnerable people away from their NHS.

Note: NHS is the socialist Brit National Health Service, ellipses and emphasis are mine

Conspiracy of silence allowed NHS rape spree

IT WAS a secret that William Kerr was determined to cover up. Working as a National Health Service psychiatrist in Northern Ireland he had been accused of luring a teenage patient into his car, claiming that sex would help her mental condition.

It was a laxity within the NHS that was to continue from his appointment in 1965 until his retirement in 1988. A government inquiry has now concluded that during this time he raped or sexually molested at least 67 women.

Thirty-eight of his female patients made complaints to nurses and 11 GPs (Family Practitioners) but they were largely dismissed as fantasists or troublemakers. Only one GP, Dr John Wade, approached a senior figure. He turned to Michael Haslam, also a consultant psychiatrist at Clifton hospital and who, unknown to Wade, was (also) sexually assaulting his own patients.

It was not until 1996, when two patients complained to the General Medical Council, that action began to be taken against Haslam, who was by then medical director of South Durham NHS Trust.

But the Brit MSM, not the GMC outed the perverts.

Even then, according to the government inquiry, Haslam might never have been prosecuted if he had not sued The Sunday Times for libel after the newspaper revealed details of the allegations against him.

This distressing story shows the power the socialist NHS gives to doctors. An earlier example was Harold Shipman, Britain's and probably the world's most prolific serial killer. He used his position in the NHS to murder about 250 elderly women over the 25 year period to 1998.

And there are anecdotal horror stories. A senior nurse we met a while back was concerned that her daughter-in-law was going to an NHS hospital for a jaw operation that involved anesthesia. The nurse said it was normal practice for doctors in the operating theater to sexually abuse unconscious young women, so she was planning to fit her daughter-in-law with an improvised chastity belt.

It's not news that socialism creates all the ills of a monopoly, but it's easy to forget that, 14 years after Mrs Thatcher, a monopoly rules the lives and deaths of Brits. US health care can be pretty grim, but it doesn't kill and abuse its customers.

The Calculus Of Despotism

Weak-minded public servants become despots because once appointed for life they can do whatever they want without retribution. Their strong-minded fellows stay true to their values.

Based on history, what's the chance that Roberts will stay conservative when he's installed on SCOTUS? Sadly, it's only a bit better than evens. So Republicans need a Congressional super-majority to impose the long-suppressed will of the American people.

Consider these quotes from Ann Coulter:

"He's a scholarly man; he has a good education; he has been recommended by legal authorities; he has a good record in lower courts." — President Bush

"This decision had the advantage of being acceptable to conservatives, plus Democrats won't be able to attack him. There is nothing to grab a hold of, to whack him on." — An administration official

"Virtually every conservative who knows him trusts him and thinks he's a competent guy." —Newt Gingrich

"This guy is a complete S.O.B. of a conservative and you can't prove it." — P.J. O'Rourke

They're talking about Souter, who was appointed by Bush senior and went on to become a classic despot.

I've run the trusty spreadsheet over the rest of the crew, using the cornerstone of Anglo-Saxon democracy - the right to hold property. Last month SCOTUS overturned this in Kelo v. New London, voting as follows:

Abridge property rights: Stevens, Kennedy, Souter, Ginsberg, Breyer
Protect property rights: O'Connor, Rehnquist, Scalia, Thomas

The color-coding shows if they were appointed by a Democrat or Republican President.

Of the 7 Republican-appointed members of SCOTUS, 3 (Stevens, Souter, Kennedy) have abandoned their core values. Which means Roberts is almost evens to end up voting the left's agenda - against marriage, for pedophile rights, against the US military, etc..

Conclusions:
a) SCOTUS has grown too powerful and Congress must limit it.
b) Republicans must get super-majorities in both houses of Congress to do this.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Good News, Bad News, Good News

The good news is that Brits have done an excellent job in catching the July 21 suspects. As well as good police work, the telecoms industry pitched in to track the would-be killers, and the Brit public, Muslims included, provided a cornucopia of information.

The bad news is that Blair is an appeaser of terror and will release the suspects as soon as he can, while prosecuting the cops, MI5 and the SAS.

But then the final good news is that when Blair is gone, the Brits will get even.

The captives look to be the B Team - the guy caught in Rome was tracked across Europe by his cellphone calls. The 9-strong A Team which Hoffman freed had $500,000 of non-trackable satellite phones, so they'll be harder to catch.

The bad news is Blair's appeasement of the IRA in Northern Ireland. It's a character defect since there's no need for him to appease - the police and public response to Muslim terrorism and Army performance in Afghanistan and Iraq show that the Brits can easily extirpate the IRA. Yet Blair has now handed the Northern Irish Catholic community over to a Fear State. Here are some things he did this past week (my ellipsis and emphasis):

Freeing mass murderers

Sean Kelly, the Shankill bomber who killed nine innocent people in 1993 when he blew up a fishmongers, walked out of prison as the horse-trading leading up to the IRA statement began in earnest.

Letting fugitive murderers return

IRA murderers on the run are to be offered an amnesty that will allow them to return to Northern Ireland.

Withdrawing the Brit army

The Government yesterday reacted to the IRA's promise to give up violence by closing a military base and dismantling an Army watchtower guarding one of Northern Ireland's most notorious trouble spots.

The IRA, which has broken very agreement it has made, responded with a joke

"The leadership (of the IRA) has formally ordered an end to the armed campaign. This will take effect from 4pm this afternoon. All IRA units have been ordered to dump arms."

Despite anger over the (IRA) murder of Robert McCartney this year and the (IRA) £26.5 million Northern Bank robbery last year, there was no specific mention of the IRA ending its involvement in robberies, punishment beatings, money laundering, smuggling and its refusal to recognise the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

The IRA promised to co-operate with the Independent International Commission on Decommissioning and to invite a Catholic priest and a Protestant minister to witness the dumping of its armoury.

Now that's verification!

Based his IRA performance, I forecast that within 12 months Blair will have released all the London bombing suspects, paid them reparations, and started legal action against Brit police for excessive use of force etc.

But the final good news is that, long term, he is toast. And the London episode shows that Brit people and their institutions are perfectly capable of vigorous self-defense and vengeance. So IRA and Muslim killers should not stick around.

If You Bomb Us, Do We Not Bleed?

Shylock in the Merchant of Venice argues that Jews are human beings too. Pope Benedict XVI seems to have forgotten this.

If you prick us, do we not bleed?
if you tickle us, do we not laugh?
if you poison us, do we not die?
and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?

However:

Pope Benedict failed to mention - during his Angelus prayer last Sunday - a suicide bombing in the town of Netanya. The Pope condemned recent terrorist strikes in Britain, Egypt, Iraq and Turkey, but not the attack that killed five Israelis on July 12.

The Pope's handlers responded to Israeli complaints like politicians, not churchmen:

...the Pope could not be expected to condemn every Palestinian bombing because Israel's retaliation for such attacks was ''not always compatible with the rules of international law''.

''The Holy See cannot take lessons or instructions from any other authority on the tone and content of its statements."

This German Pope has committed to mending fences with the Israelis after the hostility shown them by his Polish predecessor.

He has made a lousy start.

The Real Heat Of Battle

On my morning run It was sunny, 95 degrees (35C), 50% humidity & windless and I really suffered in just one hour. But in Baghdad it's almost 120 degrees (45C) & just as sunny. And our infantry are routinely putting in more than a 6 mile run. If ever you feel critical of them, think of that.

Our infantry in Iraq puts in hours of hard physical effort at 120 degrees, not in lightweight running kit, but dressed for combat and carrying 30 pounds of weapons & equipment. While sweating along, they have to operate complex and cranky equipment. And when they give battle, they must show perfect judgment, less some paunchy pol back home wrecks their lives and reputations for shooting too quickly, or too slowly, or at the wrong target, or for shooting at all. These soldiers are not all kids with the resilience of youth - some officers are closer my age, leading from the front.

Toynbee argues that civilizations grow from the skills their warriors develop fighting on frontiers, which suggests that after Iraq, the Anglosphere is due for another round of expansion.

Now I'm off to lie down under a ceiling fan...

Friday, July 29, 2005

Three Down

The Times reports that two more of the July 21 bombers have were captured today, leaving one at large, plus possibly an accomplice. Nice graphic.


Mossie haul

Equestrian Pursuits

The moribund German economy is stirring.

Berlin readies giant brothel for 2006 World Cup

BERLIN, July 29 (Reuters) - A German company is looking to cash in on an expected boom in the sex trade during next year's soccer World Cup with a 60-room brothel a walk away from Berlin's Olympic Stadium, German media reported on Friday.

Named after the virgin huntress of Greek mythology, the "Artemis" complex is due to open for business in September with whirlpool, sauna, cinema, buffet restaurant and a staff of 100 prostitutes, mass circulation daily Bild reported.

"This is no flash rip-off joint where clients are taken for a ride," a spokesman for the Artemis GmbH investment company behind the project, told the newspaper.

I should hope they don't take clients for a ride - where would you keep the poor horses?

Triumph Of Socialized Medicine

Terri Schiavo was dehydrated to death after years of legal battles. It's worse for disabled Brits - when their socialist health system decides them to be "not competent", they are killed with the doctor's weapon of choice, dehydration. (My ellipsis).

Dying man loses legal battle over right to be fed

Mr (Leslie Burke) (45) suffers from cerebellar ataxia, a progressively degenerative brain condition...(he) will need artificial nutrition and hydration (ANH) when he loses the ability to swallow...(he) is terminally ill and fears that doctors may allow him to die...

Last July, the High Court granted a challenge by (Mr. Burke), and declared that key sections of General Medical Council (Brit doctors' trade union) guidance on withdrawal of life-prolonging treatment were unlawful. (It ruled) that the patient had the right to insist on ANH.

But yesterday three appeal judges allowed an appeal by the GMC against the ruling, setting aside six declarations by the trial judge. Permission to appeal was refused.

"A patient cannot demand that a doctor administer a treatment which the doctor considers is adverse to the patient's clinical needs. "

Karl Max would be proud of this reasoning. Would these despots dare rule that "A customer cannot demand that a salesman sells them a car which the salesman considers is adverse to the customer's driving needs"?

That said, we consider the scenario that we have just described is extremely unlikely to arise.

Would they accept "Heh, it will never happen!" as a reason not to cover an eventuality in a contract?

Perhaps sensing that killing disabled people is not popular, the judges tried to "clarify" their decision, in the process highlighting their cruelty. (My emphasis).

The judges added that, "where a competent patient indicates his or her wish to be kept alive by the provision of ANH, any doctor who deliberately brings that patient's life to an end by discontinuing the supply of ANH will not merely be in breach of duty but guilty of murder".

But they stressed that "in the last stage of life" ANH - far from prolonging life - may even hasten death.

This Get Out Of Jail clause must be based on evidence from a GMC Expert Witness that Food And Water Kills.

Here's the judges' (literally) killer clause:

"It is only in this situation that, assuming the patient remains competent, a patient's expressed wish that ANH be continued might conflict with the doctor's view that this is not clinically indicated."

So, in the Brit socialist health system, if the medics judge you terminally ill and ITHO don't "remain competent", you're toast. This includes Grandma and Grandpa, as well as younger disabled people.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

More On Saving Innocents From Suicide Bombers

My logic of when a rational cop should kill a suspected suicide bomber has been extended by Giles to address the Dead Man's Trigger (DMT). Suicide teams might adopt DMT after their members were intercepted and killed by cops before they could insert themselves into crowds.

If, for example, you think there's a 50:50 chance of a DMT, the policeman needs to think there's a 13.3% chance of someone being a bomber before shooting. That's still very low.

And to get to a 50:50 chance of a DMT, we'd need more technically competent Jihadis than the detonator-challenged crew last week. Pressure release systems (like a hand grenade without the pin out) would be very difficult to sustain while running from police. Heart monitors (as used by runners) are liable to interference from power lines and also loss of electrical contact with the chest area during violent activity. Either would cause premature explosion.

Still, with or without DMT, our cops are left with an agonizing choice.

...do we regard the death of an innocent at police hands as being that much worse than a death at the hands of terrorists? I suspect the latter, perhaps because we regard the risk of a state run amok as greater than that of terrorism. If we regard police shootings of innocents as being twice as bad as terrorist-caused deaths, then we find that the policeman has to be 13.3% sure before shooting if there are no DMTs, and 23.5% if there are DMTs half the time.

23.5% is still a very low level.

The best solution I've found to this dilemma is the Taser. This fires two barbs trailing wires into the target which deliver a 50,000 volt shock.

The Taser is yellow to show it is not a gun. Officers are told to aim for the target's back, and the device has a range of 21ft.

It was first used in Britain on August 3 last year when officers in London tried to stop a man carrying two handguns. He failed to stop after being hit in the stomach by a plastic bullet, but the Taser brought him down. He later made a full recovery.

The Taser has been drawn six times in Manchester since it was introduced in January. In one incident it took down a man with a gun holding a woman hostage.

It takes down the suspect about 85% of the time, is usually (but not always) non fatal.

Negatives are the limited range - within the kill zone of the nail bombs used by the IRA and current terrorists. And it may stop the victim's heart, so if they have a DMT the cop may be killed as well. And of course the 50,000 volts might trigger home-made explosives.

So, here are my suggestions.

1. Shoot suspected suicide bombers with Tasers from maximum range.

2. Shoot from a crouching position to reduce shooter vulnerability to an explosion.

3. Shoot below the waist, where there is least probability of explosives and less bulky clothing.

After Tasing, an innocent has a very painful experience but still lives. Of course 15% of terrorists will not be taken down, but we've reduced the kill from 13 per bomber to 2 - maybe the Brits can live with this.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

A Postscript On Living With Nuclear War

Giles correctly points out that my post didn't adequately explain what's now changed to make nuclear war likely. The big change is that the US has given up on nuclear proliferation & there's nobody else to do the job.

In the last 2 months the US administration has reversed all its previous positions on proliferation.

1. Granting nuclear technology to India

See post. This eliminates the US bully pulpit.

2. Dropping its refusal to negotiate one-on-one with North Korea

BEIJING: The United States and communist North Korea held a rare one-on-one meeting Monday, with the American side stressing it was time for “real progress” to be made in reversing the North’s drive for nuclear weapons.

By rewarding NoKo for having nukes, it's providing them incentives to keep them.

3. Offering Iran WTO membership in return for a "promise" not to build nukes

After blocking Iran's bid 21 times, the US agreed to allow the WTO to begin entry talks with Iran.

This is the useless "carrot" policy originated by Clinton.

I fear that this administration has decided that it has enough to do domestically and in Iraq & has decided to kick nuke proliferation into the long grass, leaving its successor to deal with it. But if the successor is Democrat, it will be isolationist & we know what happened last time the US went isolationist.

So we face a world of nuclear armed dictatorships with no cop to keep them in line.

Making Decisions About Suspected Suicide Bombers

The shooting of the Brazilian in London has generated little rational discussion in the blogosphere. The nasty reality is that the suicide bomber forces a rational police officer to shoot dead a suspect if he is only 10% confident that an individual is about to detonate. People who are taking an anti-police line (including the otherwise estimable Bruce Schneier) would do better proposing really effective non-lethal options for the police.

There's a lot of theory on the problem of choosing between unpleasant alternatives, and the one I use is based on the work of this man.

Thomas Bayes, one of the leading mathematical lights in computing today, differs from most of his colleagues: He has argued that the existence of God can be derived from equations. His most important paper was published by someone else. And he's been dead for 241 years.

Here's how it works.

Imagine you are a London cop facing a suspected suicide bomber in a crowded railway carriage. He might pull the trigger at any moment, so you have to make a split-second decision as to whether or not to shoot him.

Your estimate that the guy is a suicide bomber is P, a number between zero (which would be certainty that he was innocent), and 1 (certainty that he was a bomber). It follows that your estimated probability that the guy is not a suicide bomber is (1-P).

You quickly review the costs of your 2 options:

- if you don't shoot him and he detonates, you and a bunch of innocents will be maimed or killed.

- if you do shoot him, and he's innocent, he for sure is dead.

(Incidentally, the references to a "shoot-to-kill-policy" are idiotic - the first thing you learn in weapons training is that you must always assume that your shot will kill.)

Back to statistics. We can calculate the costs of the 2 outcomes our police officer faces:

- in the four 7/7/ bombings, 52 innocents died - each suicide bomber killed 13 people.

- the cost of shooting an innocent is obviously one dead.

So now we can calculate the probabilistic costs which combine probability with cost:

- if you do not shoot the guy, he has probability P of detonating, so the probabilistic cost is 13 dead * P

- if you shoot him and he's innocent (probability (1-P), the probabilistic cost is 1 dead * (1-P)

A Bayesian decision is to shoot if the probabilistic cost of shooting a bomber (13*P) is greater than probabilistic cost of shooting an innocent (1*(1-P)). When the two are equal (13*P = 1*(1-P)), the decision is balanced

Solving for P gives a balanced decision value for P of just 7%, and allowing a margin would set the level at 10%.

In summary, you save the most lives if you shoot a suspect when you have a better than 1 in 10 belief that he is a bomber. Which means 9 innocents get shot for every 1 suicide bomber! But killing the latter saves 13 innocents, so you're ahead.

(For statistician readers: I've run other models with added costs - injury, economic, intelligence, and also looked at multiple correlated outcomes. Still comes out around 10%).

Being expected to kill on such low probabilities must be an impossible burden for the police officers who are making and executing these decisions & I bet they use much higher probabilities, even though that means more innocents die. So in a later post I'll look at ways to reduce this pressure and loss of innocent lives using non-lethal options.

UPDATE

A warm welcome to visitors from Tim Worstall and the BBC Magazine. As you'll see from the above, this blog tries to combine hard data with basic scienctific disciplines to make sense of the world.

Don't be put off by the maths - we only use the intuitively obvious stuff - statistical inference, threat assessment, queuing theory etc. For example, take a look at my take on the London police and US TSA policies on not selectively searching people from the same racial background as previous terrorists. You might agree with these policies, but the numbers show that there's a cost.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Living With Nuclear War

Last week the US laid the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to rest, acknowledging that democracies with nukes threaten no-one except their attackers, and dictatorships will get nukes regardless. With nuclear war now a matter of "when" not "if", how do democracies survive?

nuke

The death of the NPT was implicit in the US agreement with India, the world's largest democracy (and nuclear power since 1974).

President Bush agreed yesterday to share civilian nuclear technology with India, reversing decades of U.S. policies designed to discourage countries from developing nuclear weapons.

The agreement between Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, which must win the approval of Congress, would create a major exception to the U.S. prohibition of nuclear assistance to any country that doesn't accept international monitoring of all of its nuclear facilities. India has not signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which requires such oversight, and conducted its first nuclear detonation in 1974.

The NPT has always been weak. Its sponsors - US, UK, France, China, and the USSR - all hung onto their nukes. So when India, Israel and Pakistan got theirs, sponsors had zero moral leverage. Now North Korea, Iran, Japan & Taiwan are likely soon to have nukes.

How do democracies survive in a world in which every tin-pot dictator can kill hundreds of thousands of their citizens?

1. Promise Assured Retaliation

This was the Cold War doctrine - if you nuke me, I'll nuke you, probably killing you and your elite. This policy has to be clearly enunciated in advance - after the event it has little deterrent value!

2. Propagate Nukes to Democracies

For Assured Retaliation to work, democracies must either rely on allies to retaliate for them, or have their own nukes.

Having your own is safest - as Iraqi Freedom showed, once-solid alliances can crumble overnight. For example, the US or UK are unlikely to risk counter-strikes by retaliating against Iran (say) for a strike on Berlin. Germans needs to get nukes and can easily do so.

3. Deploy Missile Defenses

Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) limits damage but is not an alternative to counter-strike - the history of warfare tells us that you can never rely 100% on defense. Still, in 5 years time the US BMD shield should be capable of stopping most Iranian and some Chinese strikes.

Co-operation with other nations does make sense for BMD - it needs radars all over the place. Hence the UK deployment of US BMD radar, which means eventually the shield can be extended to the UK. Same applies to Japan.

4. Prepare Civilians

Civil populations need education on how to survive nuclear war. And simple changes to building codes can reduce casualties, for example requiring that new buildings have basic blast and fallout shelters, on the Swiss model.

However, democracies probably won't do anything to prepare their populations until a nuclear exchange actually occurs - like the UK before 7/7, they'll just hope it won't happen.

Meantime, individuals should educate themselves to look after their families.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Friendly Fire

Historically, about 20% of allied soldiers are killed by their comrades - so-called "Friendly Fire". The guy killed on Friday by Brit police is in this category, and as the Brit police chief said, citizens should expect more. Brits will get used to it, as their parents did.

Here's the background (selected from my March 7 post).

Friendly fire results from armed young men having to make split-second decisions that could save or lose their own lives, their comrades' lives, or the lives of innocents. The young men make errors of position (shelling their own troops), or identification (mistaking their own, or civilians, for the enemy).

World War 2

The Pentagon estimates US friendly fire deaths in WW2 at 21,000, which is 16% of all combat deaths. Details are heartbreaking. Thousands of men dying through recognition failures, trigger-happy gunners, poor aircraft recognition, incorrect map references and every error you can imagine - often after surviving the worst the enemy could do. The leader of the Iwo Jima flag raisers later died in a US Navy bombardment.

Gulf War

The Pentagon estimates friendly fire deaths at 35, 23% of all deaths.

Brits losses to FF were 56%.

Afghanistan

Numbers not available, but include the attack by US planes on a Canadian Army unit which killed 4 soldiers. Plus US Special Forces hit by Daisy Cutters.

Iraqi Freedom

No final statistics available but incidents included Patriot missile downings of allied planes, Warthogs attacking Brit armor, and one Brit tank destroying another.

Conclusion

Friendly Fire is a nasty reality of warfare. The allies didn't ask for the curent war, and we can now only end it the way we've always ended wars - by destroying the enemy.

And in the meantime, we'll get used to the tragedies of Friendly Fire, just as our parents and grandparents did.

Bustards!

Brit Greens have unwittingly discovered a foolproof way to ensure that foreign creatures survive on the mean lanes of Salisbury Plain (my emphasis).

Conservationists hoping to reintroduce the world's heaviest bird to Britain have imported a second batch of chicks after foxes killed most of the first.

Some 40 young great bustards were flown from Russia on Friday to join the five that have survived on Salisbury Plain, Wilts, since they arrived last summer.

Of the 28 imported last year, only one, Dudley, has become truly wild.

All right-thinking Brits consider Dudley a very wimpy name. And I'm guessing the creature was originally given a heroic name, as befits a Russian chick destined to become one of the world's heaviest birds - something like Vassili, the shooter in Enemy at The Gates. Renaming it Dudley would have made it Truly Wild As Hell.

So the solution is to give all the new chicks similar wimpy names: Nigel, Rupert, Piers, Cecil, or anything French.

If, I have offended any Dudleys or French people with this post, Tough.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

One Way Tickets To Islamabad

The Brit MSM has begun the job of identifying local terrorists. Pakistan will be delighted to take delivery of the first batch.

Once glibly described as the “Tottenham Ayatollah” and often portrayed as a figure of fun, the radical Islamist preacher Omar Bakri Mohammed has an increasingly strong claim to the title of the godfather of British terrorism.

It is becoming clear that al-Muhajiroun (ALM), the group formed by Bakri in London less than a decade ago, has played a pivotal role in radicalising young Britons who have gone on to wreak terror in Britain and across the world.

The Sunday Times has identified more than a dozen members of ALM who have taken part in suicide bombings or have become close to Al-Qaeda and its support network.

To their shame, the Brit authorities appeased these killers.

The authorities may have been lulled into a false sense of security because Bakri, who acts as ALM’s spiritual leader, insisted that his followers obey a “covenant of security” which, while encouraging terror abroad, forbade them from carrying out attacks in Britain.

Last November Bakri announced that ALM was disbanding. Three months later he said the “covenant of security” was no longer in force. Experts note that the London bombings followed four months later.

But there's good news:

Seven days after the September 11 attacks Bakri issued a fatwa (religious ruling) containing a death threat against President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan.

Pakistan will be delighted to host these folks.

Brit Muslims Agree Police Did The Right Thing

Elected Muslim Brits agree that the apparently innocent guy shot by London police is another casualty of the al Queda war on us.

Here's what seems to have happened.

The guy, possibly unknowingly, lived in a house that was used by terrorists.

One senior source said last night: "We were led to an address in Stockwell by documents found in the abandoned rucksacks and by our intelligence. This house, which now appears to be a multi-occupancy address, was put under surveillance."

When stopped by armed police he ran away, bolting into an Underground train carriage full of people.

It is believed that Mr de Menezes, who is thought to have spoken good English, may have been working illegally in Britain for up to four years. He is thought to have panicked when confronted by armed men as he was about to buy a Tube ticket at about 10am. Witnesses said that he hurdled the ticket barrier, ran down the escalator and stumbled into a carriage.

He was dressed suspiciously.

The man, who was wearing a padded jacket that officers might have thought contained explosives, was pounced on by three officers, one of whom shot five low-velocity bullets from a handgun into his head in front of horrified passengers.

This is what one of the elected Representatives of the 85% of decent Brit Muslims had to say (my emphasis).

Last night, as the Metropolitan Police admitted that the Stockwell man had proved to have no links to the terror investigation, Khalid Mahmood, the Labour MP for Birmingham Perry Bar, told The Sunday Telegraph that he still supported the new tactics.

"The death of an innocent man is a terrible tragedy and we have to feel sympathy for him and his family and also the police," he said.

"But the basic principles remain the same. As long as the police have robust procedures in place then, if a suspect ignores a command to stop and is deemed to be jeopardizing the lives of other people, shooting to kill is justified.

Anyone who ignores a police challenge will nearly always have something to hide and will know that he is putting his own life at risk by running away.

"The civil liberties of those whose lives are threatened have to take priority over the rights of someone assessed in good faith by highly trained police officers to be a suicide bomber."

Couldn't put it better myself.

Japan Gets Ready

Japan is considering deploying its ballistic missile defenses next March, a year earlier than planned. Confirming that the despots running China are curiously intent on their own destruction.

Japan may start deploying a missile shield by the end of next March, a year earlier than planned, to counter the threat of North Korean and Chinese ballistic missiles, a Japanese daily said yesterday.

Under the current plan, the Defense Ministry is to start deploying Patriot 3 (PAC-3) surface-to-air missiles in late fiscal 2006-07, which ends in March 2007, Yomiuri Shimbun said.

In addition, one of Japan's four Aegis destroyers is to be refitted with SM-3 missiles by the end of 2007.

The two missiles provide layered defense. The newer SM-3 directly hits and destroys incoming warheads safely outside the atmosphere. If it fails, the PAC-3 attacks below 50,000 feet after warhead re-entry. It also destroys the target with a direct hit - when I worked on this type of weapon, we jokingly called them "Hitiles".

So, the triumph of Chinese diplomacy in creating a nuke-armed North Korea is to cause Japan to field the most advanced BMD umbrella in the world. Its next triumph following on from its targeting Taiwan with 700 missiles will be Taiwan deploying nukes. And I'm guessing that following their recent threat to nuke hundreds of US cities, the targeting of the Trident fleet has been tweaked.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Sceptred Isle

This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise,
This fortress built by Nature for herself
Against infection and the hand of war,
This happy breed of men, this little world,
This precious stone set in the silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall
Or as a moat defensive to a house,
Against the envy of less happier lands, --
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England.

William Shakespeare, "King Richard II", around 1600 AD

Stockwell, 2005 AD

. . . "On Thursday the terrorists sent a message which was ... we can still reach out and touch you wherever you are," anti-terrorism expert Robert Ayers of the Royal Institute of International Affairs think tank told Reuters.

"The police message on Friday was 'we are not messing around ... we are going to kill your ass'," he said, noting the aim was to stop the device being triggered even in the throes of death.

London, 2005 AD

Elite detectives, dressed as young Londoners with peace wristbands, designer leisurewear and fashionable haircuts, are now on the front line, stalking suspects. Trained with the SAS in close-combat techniques, they are equipped with brutally efficient, adapted Heckler & Koch pistols.

United Kingdom, 2005 AD

These small rainswept isles off the western end of the vast Eurasian landmass have contributed far more to the well-being of the rest of humanity than any other country, bar none.

Hanging Is The Only Answer

There's an interesting poll here on the attitude of Brit Muslims to the London killings. Conclusion: the Brit establishment has to restore capital punishment.

The poll is done online, and online Muslims are unlikely to be representative of the population as a whole. So I wouldn't treat the numbers as gospel. The questions are a mixture - some ask about confidence in the courts and politicians, and the results are not remarkable. The remainder however impact directly on whether the people questioned consider themselves Brits.

- 17% thought the 7/7 killings were either justified or only not justified on balance.
- 13% had a lot of sympathy for the terrorists.
- 16% did not feel loyal to the UK.
- 14% felt that the Muslim community had no responsibility at all to bring the killers to justice.
- 14% said that they had no duty to tell the police of suspicious behavior.

It's hard to see how anyone with these views could ever be happy in the UK. Or how that person's fellow citizens would wish to be in their company.

Averaging the above numbers gives us 15% - about 240,000 individuals - in the Not Brit category.

If the Brits let these people stay, they will go on supporting and providing murderers - if they kill one Brit each, that's more than the Brits lost in WW2. And long before it got that far, citizens would take matters into their own hands, with terrible consequences for the 85% of decent Brit Muslims.

Forced re-conditioning isn't an option - nobody has ever got it to work, not even in Clockwork Orange!

Prison doesn't work - in the Brit system, this just provides a training environment, witness the IRA's H-Block machinations.

Deportation is worth a try, but I can't see any reason for another nation to accept nutty Brit nationals.

Which leaves killing them. Not because of who they are, but what they do. The Brits must re-instate capital punishment for murder.

Brit citizens have never been in favor of the abolition of capital punishment - that was forced on them by their liberal elites. If the terror continues,the pendulum will swing, as will a lot of terrorists...

Strange But True

Strange behaviors of countries tell you a lot about their inhabitants.

Austria
It's a crime to bury a dead pet in your yard - you need to take it to the local soap factory. I'm guessing the Austrians eat a lot of dead pet and don't use locally produced soap.

EU
Just in case you think the above is an Urban Legend, here's the EU piling in.
The direct burial of dead pet animals is authorized only in limited cases.

Switzerland
There are only 4 days a year when you can move house. Those days are chaotic, with all the removers over-scheduled and move-ins colliding with move-outs. If you designed software this way, you'd need lots of buffering to prevent deadlock (A cannot move in until B moves out but B can't move out until A has). So Switzerland must have lots of empty houses.

Spain and France
It's illegal to possess a radar detector or to flash headlights to alert fellow motorists to a speed trap. Residents get their driving licenses suspended and tourists' cars are impounded. I'm sure the locals have a solution, as the Brits have in necklacing speed cameras.

Germany
Polizei fine you 50 Euros (about 1 New Lira) if they catch you strolling across an empty road without the permission of the little green man signal. On the plus side, there are lots of German jokes that start "Why did the chicken cross the road?".

Italy
Many restaurants close for dinner. Solution is to eat after 10 PM, when they re-open.

Britain
If you have a TV just to watch Fox News, it's a criminal offense not to pay the BBC about $200 a year so that it can publish reports that never use the word terrorist, in case it prejudices you against terrorists. Example today (my emphases):

In the most devastating attack, a bomber rammed his car into Ghazala Gardens Hotel, according to an eyewitness.

In the Old Market area blast, about four kilometres (2.5 miles) away, 17 people - believed to be Egyptian workers - were killed as they gathered at a street cafe, rescue officials said.

At least the poor souls killed and maimed in the hotel had a real "bomber" to blame (although the "his" is a bit sexist). The poor rescue workers were just "killed".

Oops, this was supposed to be a fluffy bunny post.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Al Queda Trends Down

If you are an investor in Al Queda, sell now!

9/11/01: AQ crashes planes into NYC and DC, kill 3,000. US declares war on AQ, its supporters, and all potential recruits. Beats crap out of same.

3/11/04: AQ bombs Madrid, killing 191. Spanish cops top the front-men but Spain pulls out of Iraq. Nobody notices.

7/7/05: AQ suicide-bombs London, killing 52. Brits get irritated and decide all bombers should be shot in sight. They start deporting nutter Muslims.

7/21/05: AQ suicide bombs London again, killing zero. One suspected bomber shot on sight. Brits now really very irritated. Start frowning and making long lists of AQ prospects & suspects.

At this rate we'll get:

8/4/05. AQ fires pea-shooter at baby in Chelsea. Baby makes Citizen's Arrest. Police kill 4,000 suspected AQ terrorists "as a precaution". Blair "regrets any inconvenience caused". Nation observes 1 second silence for bereaved.

Do Topped Bombers Get The Virgins?

Brit police today demonstrated the sensible maxim that a suicide bomber merits a head shot. Since the bomber-to-be didn't manage to kill any innocents, does he qualify for martyrdom?

Terrorism experts said that the South London shooting was an unavoidable use of lethal force, the first result of new rules of engagement given to the security forces to deal with the threat of suicide bombers: shoot for the head, not for the body, in case you detonate explosives on the suspect's body. If officers thought the man was carrying explosives, they had no choice.

Brit Muslim "Moderates"

The Muslim Association of Britain threatens continued slaughter of Brit innocents until Blair pulls Brit troops out of Iraq. Which shows that, in spite of their organization's name, they don't have a clue about Brit morality or history.

Dr Azzam Tamimi, from the Muslim Association of Britain, said the country was in real danger and that this would continue so long as British forces remained in Iraq.

He described the July 7 bombings and the attempted attacks in London on Thursday as "horrifying" but said it was not enough to simply unite in condemnation of the bombers.

Dr Tamimi, speaking after a Sky News debate in Birmingham, said: "The latest developments very clearly show this is a very big thing. It's not just a few individuals from Leeds. I think it's time everybody got serious and engaged in an attempt to prevent it. Part of that would be to understand what's going on.

"7/7, 21/7, and God knows what will happen afterwards, our lives are in real danger and it would seem, so long as we are in Iraq and so long as we are contributing to injustices around the world, we will continue to be in real danger.

Brits are individually no better than any other people. But culturally they've spent 500 years standing up to bullies. And they hate cruelty - for example yesterday's bomber trying to detonate next to a mother holding her baby. And they've learned the hard way that their only strength is in sticking together through the horrors of warfare.

And now they know that Dr Azzam Tamimi is a terrorist. I hope he enjoys Bangladesh or Pakistan. Or, even better, Shia Iraq!

NYT: The Quiet Assassins

In 1941, two US newspapers pushed the US prematurely into war with Germany, killing thousands of Americans. The New York Times continues that bloody tradition - recently publishing our planes' routes into Iraq, and now publishing to the Sunni and al Queda kid-killers a Secret report on the weaknesses in the fledgling Iraqi security forces. How do the brave and honest American people breed such perverts?

The Pentagon has given a stark assessment of the state of Iraq's fledgling security forces, concluding that only a "small number" of units are capable of fighting the insurgency without American military support.

The sober analysis was made by Gen Peter Pace, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. It was leaked to The New York Times as Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, insisted on keeping secret the Pentagon's views on the Iraqi security forces, contained in a separate report due to be delivered to Congress last night.

"The information we're getting is in large measure from the Iraqi security forces," Mr Rumsfeld said. "It's their information. It's not for us to tell the other side, the enemy, the terrorists, that this Iraqi unit has this capability and that that Iraqi unit has that capability."

The NYT gives us a glimpse into the violent and self-hating souls of US liberals. How a nation of decent people produces these creatures is a mystery.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

IRAQ: Myths About Civilian Casualties

There are two Brit "25,000 Iraqi deaths since 2003" reports floating about. After the Lancet Lies, I only believe statistics collected directly by Iraqi people. But, even if the number is correct, who is doing the killing and why?

Are the killers Minutemen, terrorists or crooks? Are the victims innocents or bad guys? It makes a lot of difference to how we view the numbers.

StrategyPage addresses this.

One thing the British reports do bring up is the large role criminal gangs play in civilian losses over the last two years. Many of these gangs existed under Saddam , and it will be interesting to compare to the British report numbers to those that come out during the war crimes trials for Saddam Hussein and his cronies. Saddam used gangs and militias to terrorize the population and keep people in line. Many of these gangs survived the invasion intact and still support Saddam, and the forces trying to bring the Sunni Arabs back to power. However, few Iraqis, even Sunni Arabs, care for the criminal gangs. These guys are outlaws of the worst kind, quick to kill and commit any crime if it will make them some money.

While the activities of the criminal gangs is big news inside Iraq, it hardly gets any coverage by the foreign media. Iraqis know that the current violence is a result of the Sunni Arabs, in an alliance with Islamic radicals (al Qaeda and friends), to maintain Sunni rule in Iraq. The coalition invasion of 2003, and removal of Saddam's government, was only the opening battle in this war. But to many foreigners, the war is reported as an armed resistance to foreign occupation. That's a gross distortion of the actual situation. The Sunni Arabs are fighting to get the foreign troops out of Iraq, so that the Sunni Arabs will have a better chance of regaining control of the country.

The reality is that the use of American troops in Iraq is to enable the Kurds and Shia Arabs to build a strong enough force to deal with the Sunni Arabs, who have monopolized military and police power for decades.

The Sunnis are frantic to hang on to power because they are only about 20% of Iraq's population and face a veangeful majority if they don't. Sob.

Rolling Up Al Queda

Waiting for clarity on the apparent bomb attacks on London, it's worth noting the effectiveness of the response in the 2 weeks since 7/7. Al Queda should not be pleased.

1. Brit police and security have identified the who, when and how of the attacks. We know everything we need to know about the bombers - birth, education, travels, phone calls, contacts.

2. Egypt has the possible bomb-maker in custody. Whether they'll extradite him is another matter. If they don't and there is strong evidence against the guy, a trade, aid and tourism embargo should do the trick

3. Pakistan has the possible planner in custody and seem likely to extradite him, if he's extraditable after interrogation.

4. Brit muslims have stood up and been counted, either for their adopted nation or against it. Now we know who they are (London cockneys call the bad ones Mossies).

5. The Mayor of London is confirmed as a terrorist sympathizer.

6. Londoners have a new empathy with Israelis.

7. Muslim clerics that have spent years in the UK preaching hatred are going to be deported.

Not bad for 14 days.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Your Majesty, Pray Protect The Defenders Of Your Realm

In the UK, HM the Queen, not Blair, commands the armed forces.

Which means that Blair and his sidekicks exercise the harlot's prerogative of power without responsibility to persecute Brit soldiers. The Queen should stop this nonsense.

Three British soldiers to face 'war crimes' trial

The three soldiers were among 11 charged yesterday in relation to the treatment of two Iraqi civilians who died in British custody in separate incidents in 2003. It comes less than a week after six former chiefs of defence staff claimed that the handling of prosecutions in Iraq was motivated by political correctness.

All the soldiers, including those charged under the International Criminal Court Act, will be tried by courts martial in Britain rather than in The Hague.

Britain's Armed Forces 'under legal siege'

Six former chiefs of the defence staff rounded on politicians, lawyers, the Ministry of Defence and the military police yesterday, claiming that their handling of military prosecutions in Iraq was led by political correctness and ignored the realities of fighting.

Lord Guthrie, CDS (Chief of Defense Staff) during the September 11 attacks, said investigations carried out against troops in Iraq had caused "undeniable damage" to the Army's trust in the chain of command.


Army faces crisis over shortage of infantry recruits

A recent report said 38 of the 40 infantry regiments were under strength and that there had been a 35 per cent fall in infantry recruits.

Killing Souter's Virus

The President's appointment of an intelligent conservative to the Supreme Court comes not a moment too soon. A US Judge, at the request of the ACLU, just ordered the US Army not to support the Boy Scouts!

WSJ (subscription):

(The Boy Scouts') annual Jamboree, held since 1981 at Fort A. P. Hill in Virginia...indirectly receiv(es) support from the Army in billeting, infrastructure, and so forth. The ACLU argues that this arrangement breaches the First Amendment's separation between church and state.

The judge ruled the Boy Scouts:

...an overtly religious association because it "excludes atheists and agnostics from membership." She ordered the Army to expel the next Jamboree from Fort A. P. Hill in 2010.

Basing her ruling on this clause in the US constitution.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"

As I've mentioned before, Anglo common law's use of precedent makes it vulnerable to virus-like attack, whereby once a precedent is established, no matter how bizarre, it's set in concrete.

The US owes this particular virus to David Souter, who led the recent Supreme Court "Kelo" ruling that the government can force you to transfer your property to a private developer for their gain.

The anti-religious virus Souter injected into US law is this interpretation of the above clause in the Constitution:

"government should not prefer one religion to another, or religion to irreligion."

His wording killed the Constitutional prohibition on the US "prohibiting the free exercise" of religion. The ACLU has lived off this ever since and it's time to kill it (the virus, that is).

Back In The Southern Med

Yesterday flew from spiffy London to less than spiffy Southern Med .

Emerged from plane (steps, no jetway) into steamy 90 degrees plus. After usual 40 minute wait for checked bags, picked up a rental (battered Hyundai, but with Air-Con), cleaned up the vandalized Gandalfmobile (window broken, radio & all movable equipment gone), paid full charge to exit the airport parking lot (no security fence, only 5% CCTV cover), convoyed (dodging suicide-bomber style local drivers) to the repair shop (closed in spite of appointment, forced to re-open).

Then to our cottage, where things got better. Drip irrigation has worked - small courtyard is now a jungle! Almost all plants are lush and green, bougainvilleas grown 6', weeds 2' high.

Gandalfette joined us for drinks in our new jungle, then we headed out to dinner.

So I ended up this frustrating day in the company of two beautiful women on the terrace of a harbor-side restaurant, washing down excellent seafood with local Pinot Grigio. Lights reflecting in the still water, a gentle Mediterranean breeze keeping the temperature just right.

A reminder that nowhere is perfect, you just have to accentuate the positives.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Don't You Hate It When This Happens?

UPDATE: Scotland Yard has released this email which their experts have just recovered from the account of the leader of the London suicide bombers...

From: Deleted Electronics
To: Mr. Mohammad Sidique Khan
Sent: July 8, 2005
Urgency: High

Problems with Shipment of Order #099-666-12345

Dear Customer

Greetings from deleted.electronics.co.uk.

We wanted to let you know that we inadvertently shipped the wrong items on your order.

You ordered:

SKU-------Description------------------Quantity
786451 ---30 minute electronic timer---4

We delivered.

SKU-------Description------------------Quantity
786452----30 second electronic timer---4

Please return the incorrectly delivered items, if possible in their original packaging. We will express ship you the correct items and refund the entire amount of the order plus your return postage.

We deeply apologize for any inconvenience caused and look forward to serving you in the future.

Thank you for shopping at deleted.electronics.co.uk.

Sincerely,
Deleted Electronics Customer Service
http://www.deleted.electronics.co.uk/

Grazie Italia

If you can, take time to read Chrenkoff's Good News From Iraq, Part 31. It's huge and inspiring. You'll be particularly impressed by the work of my favorite non-Anglo nation, Italy.

Hospital

As insurgents continue the upsurge in attacks in Baghdad, the Italian hospital there is one of the few foreign hospitals continuing to treat Iraqi citizens, despite the deteriorating security situation and the incidents of foreigners being kidnapped. The hospital director, Dr Donato D'Agostino, of the Italian Red Cross, told Adnkronos International (AKI) that "the organization was set up in Baghdad in April 2003 with Italian Red Cross employees as well as Iraqi support staff." Since then it has treated 21,000 gravely ill people and 11,000 emergency cases.

Medical Assistance

A flight carrying a group of 50 Iraqis, including 13 people requiring bone-marrow transplants, their relatives and donors, on Friday left Baghdad for Rome, Italy where they will receive free medical treatment as part of an Italian government-sponsored programme...

During the programme's first phase, Iraqi patients will be treated by the Italy-based Mediterranean Institute of Haematology, while in subsequent phases, Iraqi doctors and other medical workers will receive training in Italy.

In term of the agreement, the Italy will support the creation of bone-marrow transplant facilities at hospitals in Baghdad, Mosul and Nassiriya.

Infrastructure

An inauguration ceremony has been held to open a bridge built by the Italian contingent in the Dhi Qar governorate in the south of Iraq where the force is based. The iron bridge - which is around 60 meters long and four and a half MITREs high - crosses a stretch of public water known as 'Saddam's river'.

Ahmad al-Shaykh, the vice governor of Dhi Qar, told Adnkronos International (AKI) at the inauguration ceremony, which was also attended by the commander of the Italian force in Iraq, that "the bridge, built in a remote agricultural area, responds to the needs of farmers, by making it easier for them to sell their produce."

"This project is part of a series of civil initiatives the Italian forces have offered the city in all sectors," he explained. The Italian troops also defused two bombs that had been planted close to where the inauguration ceremony was being held.

The Italian contingent in Iraq has also offered to pay for a green belt of trees which will be planted around the new Dhi Qar University, which is to be built in the western part of Nassiriya. The rector of the university, Riyad Shantah, told AKI: "the green belt will be ten kilometers long and will surround the university buildings to protect them from the dust of the city, which is a particular problem during the summer."

He went on to add: "next year the university has decided to open a department for the teaching of the Italian language in the arts faculty and another faculty in the Jabaysh area in the lake district, which will be completely funded and equipped by Italy."

Great decision to teach the beautiful Italian language.

Locust Bites Weasel

France faces drought, locusts reports WaTimes.

On top of a severe drought, France is fighting a plague of hundreds of thousands of locusts. The locusts are devouring everything from crops to window-box flowers.

We return to the Southern Med tomorrow, and in the interests of full disclosure I should mention that we left in our courtyard a locust name of Jimminy. We've been away 5 weeks, and maybe he got hungry.

We're sooo sorreee...