12 February 2004

Partying with the IDF

Little Green Footballs has pictures of Palestinian war crimes. In these pictures you can see armed men using civilians and children for cover. It shows either a complete indifference to personal survival or indicates that the Israeli response is so weak that hanging around gunmen actively firing on the IDF can be treated like a big party. Or both, I suppose.

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Another "that was then, this is now" moment for the NY Times


Mr. Bush said repeatedly that he went to the United Nations seeking a diplomatic alternative to war. In fact, the United States rejected all diplomatic alternatives at the time, severely damaging relations with some of its most important and loyal allies.

— New York Times editorial. February 9 2004.

Yesterday’s unanimous vote at the United Nations Security Council sends the strongest possible message to Baghdad…This is a well-deserved triumph for President Bush, a tribute to eight weeks of patient but determined and coercive American diplomacy…Only if the council fails to approve the serious consequences it now invokes — generally understood to be military measures — should Washington consider acting alone.

— New York Times editorial, November 9, 2002.

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Apologist watch


a writer for the New York Times uses that last fact to argue that things in the DPRDC (Democratic People’s Republic of Death Camps) really aren’t that bad.

I am not making this up. The Times got Stephen Kotkin, a history professor, to review Bruce Cumings’s North Korea: Another Country, a new book which argues that the DPRDC really isn’t that bad. (Never mind Nazi Germany, try writing a book about Franco’s Spain or Pinochet’s Chile which makes such an argument.) Here’s how Kotkin (who undoubtedly believes Guantanamo Bay is as bad as Auschwitz) deals with the inconvenient fact of entire families being shoved into the gulag:

Penal colonies hold 100,000 to 150,000 people, over half of them political prisoners, Cumings reports. But he deems the gulag both smaller than usually asserted and survivable, partly because detainees’ families are incarcerated with them. [emphasis added]

Jaw, meet floor. I have no idea if this is Kotkin’s opinion or Cumings’s, but if the latter, Kotkin obviously doesn’t have a problem with it.

But the gulags are family friendly and have universal health care! How can any Lefty object to that?

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