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Mark Steyn: The right side of history
The Spectator (U.K.) ^ | 03/05/05 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 03/03/2005 7:06:57 AM PST by Pokey78

New Hampshire

The other day in the Guardian Martin Kettle wrote: ‘The war was a reckless, provocative, dangerous, lawless piece of unilateral arrogance. But it has nevertheless brought forth a desirable outcome which would not have been achieved at all, or so quickly, by the means that the critics advocated, right though they were in most respects.’

Very big of you, pal. And I guess that’s as close to a mea culpa as we’re going to get: even though Bush got everything wrong, it turned out right. Funny how that happens, isn’t it? In a few years’ time, they’ll have it down pat — just like they have with Eastern Europe. Oh, the Soviet bloc [the Middle East thugocracies] was bound to collapse anyway. Nothing to do with that simpleton Ronnie Raygun [Chimpy Bushitler]. In fact, all Raygun [Chimpy] did was delay the inevitable with his ridiculous arms build-up [illegal unprovoked Halliburton oil-grab], as many of us argued at the time: see my 1984 column ‘Yuri Andropov, The Young, Smart, Sexy New Face Of Soviet Communism’ [see the April 2004 Spectator column ‘Things Were Better Under Saddam: The coalition has destroyed Baathism, says Rod Liddle, and with it all hopes of the emergence of secular democracy’ — and yes, that really ran in these pages, on 17 April, not 1 April.]

By the way, when’s the next Not In Our Name rally? How about this Saturday? Millions of Nionists can flood into Trafalgar Square to proclaim to folks in Iraq and Lebanon and Egypt and Jordan and Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority that all the changes under way in the region are most certainly Not In Their Name. Among the celebrity Nionists, Harold Pinter should be available to denounce Blair as a ‘war criminal’ and a ‘hired Christian thug’ one mo’ time. For as the Guardian reported this week, the great man announced that ‘he has decided to abandon his career as a playwright in order to concentrate exclusively on politics’.

That’s great news, isn’t it? One of the reasons Mr Pinter was right only ‘in most respects’ (as Martin Kettle would put it) is that he had to fit being right about everything in between composing 11-minute plays. Now he can devote his energies to it full time I’ve no doubt he’ll be right in all respects.

As for me, I got a lot of things wrong these last three years, but, looking at events in the Middle East this last week, I’m glad that, unlike the Nionist Entity, I got the big stuff right. On 8 May 2003, a couple of weeks after the fall of Saddam, I wrote in the Speccie’s then sister paper the Jerusalem Post:

‘You don’t invade Iraq in order to invade everywhere else, you invade Iraq so you don’t have to invade everywhere else.’

And so it’s turned out.

Some of the reasons for starting the remaking of the Middle East in Iraq were obvious within a day or two of 11 September. As I said back then, by his sheer survival, Saddam Hussein had become a symbol of America’s lack of will. As long as he was around, the message to Gaddafi, Arafat, Assad, Mubarak, the House of Saud and the rest of the gang was that we were still in a 10 September world. But the other reasons for starting in Iraq weren’t all so clear. After the liberation, the doom-mongers dusted down the old Bumper Boys’ Book of the British Empire and rattled off a zillion pseudo-authoritative backgrounders beginning, ‘Iraq was a new country cobbled together from several former Ottoman provinces, its lines drawn by the Europeans.’ That was Mark Mazower in the Independent. You get the cut of his jib: phony state, the slapdash creation of the Colonial Office, you can never make it work.

In fact, the artificially cobbled together country is one reason it’s worked so well. The Shia are the biggest group, but, even if they were utterly homogeneous, which they’re not, they’re not so big that they can impose their will easily on the Kurds and the Sunni. When the West’s headless chickens were running around squawking that there were more than a hundred parties on the ballot, it was all going to be one almighty mess, they failed to understand that the design flaw of Iraq is paradoxically its greatest strength: the traditional Arab solution — the local strongman — was not available. Instead, in the run-up to the election and in the month since, we’ve seen various groupings come together, hammer out areas of agreement, reach out to other coalitions, identify compromise positions, etc. — in a word, politics. The sight of eight million Iraqis going to the polls was profoundly moving to their neighbours in Syria, Lebanon, Egypt etc. But it was all the pluralist multi-party smoke-filled-room stuff that caught the fancy of the frustrated political class in those other countries. It would have been possible to find a friendly authoritarian Musharraf type and install him on one of Saddam’s solid gold toilets, but it would have been utterly uninspiring to the world beyond Iraq’s borders. It would have missed the point of the exercise.

I can understand why the transnational jet set — the EU, the UN, the NGO neo-imperialists, the foreign correspondents for CNN, the BBC and so forth — have a preference for strong, centralised states. The State Department was still in favour of keeping the Soviet Union together even after the Soviets had given up on it. It’s a pain in the neck to have to update your Rolodex every half-century or so, and when you do, you want to be able to write ‘President-for-Life Sy Kottik, also Defence Minister, Foreign Minister, Oil-for-Food Programme Director, Press Accreditation Supervisor, the one-stop shop for all your government-contacts needs — call Baghdad 001’. It’s a real nuisance to have to pencil in the Kurdish guy, and the Kurdish opposition guy, and the Sunni rejectionist, and the Sunni accommodationist and the secular Shiite and the theocrat Shiite; and that’s just for Kirkuk municipal council.

But it’s grossly condescending to assume that the Iraqi people would share your priorities. All through the worst moments of the insurgency — the real horrors in Fallujah, not the second-hand Nissan set alight on the edge of the Green Zone so the herd of foreign correspondents can film it from their hotel balconies — all through that darkest period, a few of us insisted that between two thirds and three quarters of Iraq was up and running smoothly with functioning government institutions and nascent political parties. And we were right. Don’t take my word for it — ask King Abdullah, who’s planning to duplicate some of Iraq’s political structures in Jordan.

A couple of years back, I went to hear Paul Wolfowitz. I knew him only by reputation — the most sinister of all the neocons, the big bad Wolfowitz, the man whose name started with a scary animal and ended Jewishly. In fact, he was a very soft-spoken chap, who compared the challenges of the Middle East with America’s experiments in democracy-spreading after the second world war. He said he thought it would take less time than Japan, and maybe something closer to the 1989 revolutions in Eastern Europe. I would have scoffed, but he knew so many Iraqis by name — not just Ahmed Chalabi, but a ton of others.

Around the same time, I bumped into Dominique de Villepin, the French foreign minister and man of letters. He was just back from Egypt, where he’d been profoundly moved when he’d been asked to convey the gratitude of the Arab people to President Chirac for working so tirelessly to prevent a tragic war between Christianity and Islam. You don’t say, I said. And, just as a matter of interest, who asked you to convey that? He hemmed and hawed and eventually said it was President Mubarak. Being a polite sort, I rolled my eyes only metaphorically, but decided as a long-term proposition I’d bet Wolfowitz’s address book of real people against Villepin’s hotline to over-the-hill dictators. The lesson of these last weeks is that it turns out Washington’s Zionists know the Arab people a lot better than Europe’s Arabists.

Islamism, with its plans to destroy America, take back Europe, colonise Australia and set you up with 72 virgins, may be bonkers but it’s a big idea. And you can’t beat it with a small, shrivelled idea like another decade or three of Mubarak or Assad or some such. The Bush administration decided that the only big idea they had to sell was liberty. The Europeans and the Europhile US media mostly scoffed. They’d been here before. Back in the Cold War, the Americans were able to use the phrase ‘the free world’ without irony; the French, Germans and even the British never were. This time round, the media assured us that what Iraqis wanted was not freedom but ‘security’. They didn’t all go as far as Rod Liddle, pining for the smack of firm Saddamite government, but they subscribed to the same general thesis: freedom is some airy-fairy illusion; in Saddam’s day, the streets were safe and there was no crime, apart from the ones he was committing. All wrong, as wrong as the ‘brutal Afghan winter’ and all the other media fictions. On 30 January, Bush’s big idea squared off against the head-hackers’ big idea — you vote, you die — and we know which one the Iraqi people chose, and which the rest of the region, to one degree or another, is following.

Here’s another line of mine that looks pretty good this week — my claim back in January that this is ‘the most important year in the region since Churchill drew the map of the modern Middle East in 1922’. I’ll stand on that one. But what I’d like to know is this: when Martin Kettle says he and the Nionists were right ‘in most respects’, which respects is he thinking of? What exactly did the Nionist Entity get right? That the seething ‘Arab street’ would rise up? Well, after three and a half years they finally did — in Beirut. There never was an ‘Arab street’: that’s part of the same reductive thinking that leads Dominique de Villepin to pass off some feeble schmoozing from Mubarak as the voice of the Muslim people. The entire concept of the ‘Arab street’ was lazy and condescending.

With hindsight, the fellow travellers were let off far too easily when the Iron Curtain fell like a discarded burka. Little more than a decade later, they barely hesitated a moment before jumping in on the wrong side of history yet again — and this time without the excuse that the ideological virtues of communism had merely gone awry in practice. It’s hard to make that argument about Islamism or Baathism, though Rod Liddle gamely gave the latter a whirl. But personally I hope if ever I find myself one of the unfortunate subjects of a totalitarian dictatorship, that it’s Bush and the Republicans who take up my cause rather than the Left.

The other day I found myself, for the umpteenth time, driving in Vermont behind a Kerry/Edwards supporter whose vehicle also bore the slogan ‘FREE TIBET’. It must be great to be the guy with the printing contract for the ‘FREE TIBET’ stickers. Not so good to be the guy back in Tibet wondering when the freeing thereof will actually get under way. For a while, my otherwise not terribly political wife got extremely irritated by these stickers, demanding to know at a pancake breakfast at the local church what precisely some harmless hippy-dippy old neighbour of ours meant by the slogan he’d been proudly displaying decade in, decade out: ‘But what exactly are you doing to free Tibet?’ she demanded. ‘You’re not doing anything, are you?’ ‘Give the guy a break,’ I said back home. ‘He’s advertising his moral virtue, not calling for action. If Rumsfeld were to say, “Free Tibet? Jiminy, what a swell idea! The Third Infantry Division go in on Thursday”, the bumper-sticker crowd would be aghast.’

But for those of us on the arrogant unilateralist side of things, that’s not how it works. ‘FREE AFGHANISTAN’. Done. ‘FREE IRAQ’. Done. Given the paintwork I pull off every time I have to change the sticker, it might be easier for the remainder of the Bush presidency just to go around with ‘FREE [INSERT YOUR FETID TOTALITARIAN BASKET-CASE HERE]’. Not in your name? Don’t worry, it’s not.


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: europe; eurosnots; iraq; marksteyn; mideast; steyn; wooses
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1 posted on 03/03/2005 7:06:57 AM PST by Pokey78
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To: Howlin; riley1992; Miss Marple; deport; Dane; sinkspur; steve; kattracks; JohnHuang2; ...

2 posted on 03/03/2005 7:09:06 AM PST by Pokey78 (11/02/04: The death of Zogby's "sterling" reputation.)
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To: Pokey78

Classic, cutting Steyn!

I Loved it!


3 posted on 03/03/2005 7:11:59 AM PST by nuconvert (No More Axis of Evil by Christmas ! TLR)
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To: Pokey78
it might be easier for the remainder of the Bush presidency just to go around with ‘FREE [INSERT YOUR FETID TOTALITARIAN BASKET-CASE HERE]’.

Priceless!

4 posted on 03/03/2005 7:13:11 AM PST by Tax-chick (Donate to FRIENDS OF SCOUTING and ruin a liberal's day!)
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To: Pokey78
When the West’s headless chickens were running around squawking that there were more than a hundred parties on the ballot, it was all going to be one almighty mess, they failed to understand that the design flaw of Iraq is paradoxically its greatest strength: the traditional Arab solution — the local strongman — was not available

How does a headless chicken squawk?
5 posted on 03/03/2005 7:14:36 AM PST by ElTianti
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To: Pokey78

BTTT


6 posted on 03/03/2005 7:18:14 AM PST by Cultural Jihad
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To: Pokey78

Does Steyn print his TV appearances anywhere? I'd love to see him interviewed on C-Span.


7 posted on 03/03/2005 7:21:08 AM PST by GianniV
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To: Pokey78
Not in your name? Don’t worry, it’s not.

I love this man. :)

8 posted on 03/03/2005 7:21:52 AM PST by KentTrappedInLiberalSeattle (I feel more and more like a revolted Charlton Heston, witnessing ape society for the very first time)
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To: Pokey78

bump for later read.


9 posted on 03/03/2005 7:22:07 AM PST by PGalt
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To: Pokey78

Mark nails it again!


10 posted on 03/03/2005 7:22:19 AM PST by RAY (They that do right are all heroes!)
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To: Pokey78

Great, great, great.

Thanks for posting this!


11 posted on 03/03/2005 7:23:41 AM PST by jocon307 (Vote George Washington for the #1 spot)
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To: Pokey78

good stuff
lol :)


12 posted on 03/03/2005 7:25:01 AM PST by frankiep
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To: Pokey78
In a few years’ time, they’ll have it down pat — ...

This wont be the same now. The Net with its blogger watchdogs will be their to point out their reversals. When they say they were for it all along, we will feed their previous statements right back to them.

When all else fails, read the instructions. (CCEL > Bibles and Commentaries)

13 posted on 03/03/2005 7:27:39 AM PST by isaiah55version11_0
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To: Pokey78
" the most sinister of all the neocons, the big bad Wolfowitz, the man whose name started with a scary animal and ended Jewishly."

Snort.

Guffaw.

14 posted on 03/03/2005 7:30:12 AM PST by billorites (freepo ergo sum)
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To: Pokey78

Steyn is terrific!


15 posted on 03/03/2005 7:30:22 AM PST by MEG33 (GOD BLESS OUR ARMED FORCES)
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To: Pokey78
Dang he's good... :-)
16 posted on 03/03/2005 7:30:27 AM PST by TChris (Most people's capability for inference is severely overestimated)
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To: GianniV

He was interviewed last week on cspan, I saw only the last half hour.

They have the video of the hour posted, maybe for just another day. He was on the 2/25 airing of the show.

But I cannot get the links to work for me. I never have luck getting cspan videos to work.

Here's the link, then click on the left on Washington Journal. Maybe you'll get it to work for you.

http://www.cspan.org/


17 posted on 03/03/2005 7:31:04 AM PST by texasbluebell
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To: Pokey78

Steyn is simply excellent. The Left hasn't got anyone who can come close. He is to writing what Rush is to radio.


18 posted on 03/03/2005 7:31:40 AM PST by twntaipan ("A news organizationís credibility is all it has to sell, and at CBS, the shelves are empty.")
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To: Pokey78

'Nionists'.

That's delicious...


19 posted on 03/03/2005 7:32:13 AM PST by EternalVigilance (Freedom. Brought to you by the grace of God and the Red, White and Blue...)
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To: Pokey78

If Steyn wasn't so brilliant about rubbing the 'NIONists' noses in their follishness it would be unseemly. Of course, he is so brilliant, so it is hilarious.

I saw a bumpersticker that matched the color scheme and design of the 'FREE TIBET' stickers that I loved. It said 'FREE TIBET? ARM TIBET!'


20 posted on 03/03/2005 7:35:06 AM PST by blanknoone (Steyn: "The Dems are all exit and no strategy")
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To: Pokey78
the most sinister of all the neocons, the big bad Wolfowitz, the man whose name started with a scary animal and ended Jewishly

LOL. There is so much to love about Steyn. It is interesting that he has been so right for so long about so much, AND WE KNEW IT.

21 posted on 03/03/2005 7:35:39 AM PST by Bahbah
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To: Pokey78

Another one out of the park...tater...the big adios...gone yard...so routine for Steyn...he must have the home run trot down pat by now.


22 posted on 03/03/2005 7:37:11 AM PST by xp38
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To: Pokey78

Outstanding!


23 posted on 03/03/2005 7:37:12 AM PST by Jhensy
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To: Pokey78
MARK STEYN IS THE GREATEST

24 posted on 03/03/2005 7:41:20 AM PST by shield (The Greatest Scientific Discoveries of the Century Reveal God!!!! by Dr. H. Ross, Astrophysicist)
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To: Pokey78
"A couple of years back, I went to hear Paul Wolfowitz. I knew him only by reputation — the most sinister of all the neocons, the big bad Wolfowitz, the man whose name started with a scary animal and ended Jewishly."

Yes! He revived the Wolfowitz line!
25 posted on 03/03/2005 7:42:40 AM PST by Terpfen (New Democrat Party motto: les enfant terribles)
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To: KentTrappedInLiberalSeattle

Kent, even here in Pugetopolis, I'm seeing alot fewer "NO IRAQ WAR" bumper stickers and a helluva lot more "Support our troops" ribbons. But Steyns slam of the British left is equally a slam at the commie-pukes in Seattle.


26 posted on 03/03/2005 7:43:01 AM PST by pissant
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To: Pokey78

NIONIST entity - superb slash. Gives a whole new meaning to 'slash and burn', doesn't it?


27 posted on 03/03/2005 7:44:15 AM PST by GladesGuru
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To: Pokey78
The other day I found myself, for the umpteenth time, driving in Vermont behind a Kerry/Edwards supporter whose vehicle also bore the slogan ‘FREE TIBET’. It must be great to be the guy with the printing contract for the ‘FREE TIBET’ stickers. Not so good to be the guy back in Tibet wondering when the freeing thereof will actually get under way.

The "Free Tibet" sticker on the back of MY car has a Peace Through Superior Firepower sticker right next to it.

What the justaposition of those two stickers does to the brains of liberals who sit behind me at traffic lights is a never-ending source of amusement.

And I buy my "Free Tibet" stickers from a Tibetan guy who runs a Tibetan store in the vicinity.

And he sends some of his profits back home for just that purpose.

And I always overpay him for them.

28 posted on 03/03/2005 7:44:41 AM PST by George Smiley (This tagline deliberately targeted journalists.)
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To: Pokey78

I watched him on C-SPAN, too. and he was most impressive, and like my son, has more sense than the elites, and they both have a better understanding of history and knowledge of current events, something that college profs (that neither suffered thru) and MSM are sorely missing...rto


myblog


DURING THE LAST 26 YEARS 100% OF ALL ORGANIZED ATTACKS BY FOREIGNERS ON
AMERICA HAVE BEEN BY MUSLIMS PRIMARILY FROM MIDDLE EAST COUNTRIES
CENTERED ON IRAQ.

WHY OUR MILITARY IS IN THE MIDDLE EAST AND WILL REMAIN MANY YEARS...
http://attacked911.tripod.com/

IN HIND SIGHT WE SHOULD HAVE LIBERATED IRAQ FIRST FOLLOWING 9/11

PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN...
http://www.clermontyellow.accountsupport.com/flash/UntilThen.swf OR
http://www.clermontyellowribbon.com/untilthenflash.htm

IRAQI ELECTION...
http://www.angelfire.com/ultra2/trupolitik/iraq.wmv
"Woops 'direct linking' not allowed so you have to cut and paste -
sorry."

NEVER FORGET, NEVER AGAIN...
http://www.neverforgetneveragain.com/video.html


29 posted on 03/03/2005 7:44:52 AM PST by visitor (...and the dems wonder why they lost and will continue to lose, good riddance)
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To: ElTianti
How does a headless chicken squawk?

It's true that when a chicken's head is subjected to Islamofacist justice, it still squawks even while the body runs in circles several feet away. It doesn't last long ... maybe three seconds ... but it happens. Your question was how does it happen. I don't have a clue.

30 posted on 03/03/2005 7:44:55 AM PST by layman (Card Carrying Infidel)
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Steyn I know you lurk here.....you sir are a genius.


31 posted on 03/03/2005 7:45:25 AM PST by Dog (FReepers-- - -- --- We are a battery of 80,000 bullsh*t-seeking missiles.)
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To: Pokey78

bttt


32 posted on 03/03/2005 7:46:22 AM PST by RobFromGa (Bush Needs to Stay Aggressive in Term 2)
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To: Pokey78

Thanks. Steyn-O-Mite as usual !


33 posted on 03/03/2005 7:47:34 AM PST by COUNTrecount
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To: Bahbah

Ah, vindication. One of my very favorite feelings.


34 posted on 03/03/2005 7:49:04 AM PST by ironcitymike
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To: Pokey78

I, for one, would like to see Mark have his own radio commentary show. Be nice if he took calls, but just listening to his prose is great. My wife and I always enjoy when he's on Hugh's radio show.


35 posted on 03/03/2005 7:49:24 AM PST by righttackle44
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To: Pokey78
‘Give the guy a break,’ I said back home. ‘He’s advertising his moral virtue, not calling for action. If Rumsfeld were to say, “Free Tibet? Jiminy, what a swell idea! The Third Infantry Division go in on Thursday”, the bumper-sticker crowd would be aghast.’

Another gem from Steyn. Master of the english language and turn of phrase.

36 posted on 03/03/2005 7:49:41 AM PST by zeugma (Come to the Dark Side...... We have cookies! (Made from the finest girlscouts!))
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To: Pokey78

MUHAHAHAHAHAH

PRICELESS ABSOLUTELY PRICELES>>>>



FREE [INSERT YOUR FETID TOTALITARIAN BASKET-CASE HERE]

HA HA HAHA EXCELLENT POST DUDE!!!


37 posted on 03/03/2005 7:52:59 AM PST by Irishguy (How do ya LIKE THOSE APPLES!!!! HUH)
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To: Pokey78
It’s a real nuisance to have to pencil in the Kurdish guy, and the Kurdish opposition guy, and the Sunni rejectionist, and the Sunni accommodationist and the secular Shiite and the theocrat Shiite; and that’s just for Kirkuk municipal council.

The laugh-out-loud line of the piece for me this time...

38 posted on 03/03/2005 7:53:11 AM PST by kevkrom (If people are free to do as they wish, they are almost certain not to do as Utopian planners wish)
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To: ElTianti

Voice box...like Babe Ruth (see Dennis Leary)


39 posted on 03/03/2005 7:53:28 AM PST by steve8714
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To: Pokey78

Bump.


40 posted on 03/03/2005 7:54:43 AM PST by aculeus (Ceci n'est pas une tag line.)
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To: Pokey78
Thanks for obeying the Mark Steyn Rule.

What does he mean, his wife is "not terribly political"? He must divorce her immediately and marry me!

41 posted on 03/03/2005 7:54:54 AM PST by Capriole (the Luddite hypocritically clicking away on her computer)
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To: Pokey78
the most sinister of all the neocons, the big bad Wolfowitz, the man whose name started with a scary animal and ended Jewishly.

Kuuuh-ZING!!! (And not at Mr. Wolfowitz)

42 posted on 03/03/2005 7:55:52 AM PST by lepton ("It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into"--Jonathan Swift)
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To: Pokey78

actually this is better

FREE TIBET froma lefty

He’s advertising his moral virtue, not calling for action


and that my friends is the difference between THEM and US isnt it

LEFTY :He’s advertising his moral virtue, not calling for action

RIGHTY: He's calling for action, He’s not advertising his moral virtue


43 posted on 03/03/2005 7:56:24 AM PST by Irishguy (How do ya LIKE THOSE APPLES!!!! HUH)
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marking for later


44 posted on 03/03/2005 7:56:42 AM PST by eureka! (It will not be safe to vote Democrat for a long, long, time...)
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To: Terpfen
We haven't heard too much criticism of Wolfie lately. Come to think of it, the 'Rats and their media allies haven't spoken much about foreign policy or overseas events in general for some time. It must have something to do with all of the horrible news coming out of the Middle East. Free elections, democratic protests, Saudis allowing women to vote -- what devastating news for the 'Rats, the Eurosnots, and bush-haters everywhere.

Meanwhile, Steyn just keeps getting better. His C-Span appearance was great! I just wish he had his own radio show -- but then I'd have to schedule my life around it!

45 posted on 03/03/2005 7:57:37 AM PST by You Dirty Rats (Mindless BushBot)
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To: Tax-chick
The entire concept of the ‘Arab street’ was lazy and condescending. With hindsight, the fellow travellers were let off far too easily when the Iron Curtain fell like a discarded burka. Little more than a decade later, they barely hesitated a moment before jumping in on the wrong side of history yet again — and this time without the excuse that the ideological virtues of communism had merely gone awry in practice. It’s hard to make that argument about Islamism or Baathism, though Rod Liddle gamely gave the latter a whirl. But personally I hope if ever I find myself one of the unfortunate subjects of a totalitarian dictatorship, that it’s Bush and the Republicans who take up my cause rather than the Left.

What a line!

46 posted on 03/03/2005 8:05:48 AM PST by KC_Conspirator (This space outsourced to India)
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To: Pokey78

Wow, is that a good one.


47 posted on 03/03/2005 8:07:25 AM PST by McGavin999
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To: IncPen; Nailbiter; Forecaster
The other day I found myself, for the umpteenth time, driving in Vermont behind a Kerry/Edwards supporter whose vehicle also bore the slogan ‘FREE TIBET’. It must be great to be the guy with the printing contract for the ‘FREE TIBET’ stickers. Not so good to be the guy back in Tibet wondering when the freeing thereof will actually get under way. For a while, my otherwise not terribly political wife got extremely irritated by these stickers, demanding to know at a pancake breakfast at the local church what precisely some harmless hippy-dippy old neighbour of ours meant by the slogan he’d been proudly displaying decade in, decade out: ‘But what exactly are you doing to free Tibet?’ she demanded. ‘You’re not doing anything, are you?’ ‘Give the guy a break,’ I said back home. ‘He’s advertising his moral virtue, not calling for action. If Rumsfeld were to say, “Free Tibet? Jiminy, what a swell idea! The Third Infantry Division go in on Thursday”, the bumper-sticker crowd would be aghast.’

But for those of us on the arrogant unilateralist side of things, that’s not how it works. ‘FREE AFGHANISTAN’. Done. ‘FREE IRAQ’. Done. Given the paintwork I pull off every time I have to change the sticker, it might be easier for the remainder of the Bush presidency just to go around with ‘FREE [INSERT YOUR FETID TOTALITARIAN BASKET-CASE HERE]’. Not in your name? Don’t worry, it’s not.

I wish the big guy were alive to read this ...you know he would enjoy it so...

48 posted on 03/03/2005 8:09:11 AM PST by BartMan1
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To: Pokey78

Mark is just awesome! Witty, vicious and insightful all at the same time!


49 posted on 03/03/2005 8:11:44 AM PST by tkathy (Tyranny breeds terrorism. Freedom breeds peace.)
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To: KC_Conspirator

Steyn is the One.


50 posted on 03/03/2005 8:16:25 AM PST by Tax-chick (Donate to FRIENDS OF SCOUTING and ruin a liberal's day!)
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