Monday, June 09, 2008

Militias, etc.

When people don't feel safe under the aegis of the law, or if they get the feeling that they are threatened they fall back on more primitive establishments that give them the feeling of security, a feeling that they belong to a group that is able to protect them. It could be a tribe; it could be a sect; it could be a gang or an armed group. This group will cater to their psychological needs by giving them the feeling that they are only averting the violence of others when they pull the trigger. That they are only protecting themselves and their ideals, whatever they may be. They will first stay within their "boundaries" with their guns cocked and ready. Then they will venture farther afield in pretext of securing their boundaries; and farther still they will venture - with their guns still cocked in order that they may protect their ideals and beliefs - and farther still to bring their beliefs to the people "over there'.
How many militias do we have in Iraq?

The above is from "Militias" (Inside Iraq) by an Iraqi correspondent for McClatchy Newspapers. Don't expect to hear about that from Panhandle Media. The circle-jerk is all they want. The lousy and worthless 'media conference' was last weekend. What does that mean? All the losers like Amy Goodman play Bill Moyers speech and call it 'news.' The speech is the same speech he's been giving for five years now. Scotty's book came out so that gets included. He does update it. But he keeps yacking and yacking about the lead up to the illegal war.

And we're supposed to be thrilled that Goody, et al play that same ___ing speech every year. Turn their entire programming over to it.

An Iraqi correspondent is trying to make sense of the militias in the ongoing, illegal war. Bill Moyers is stuck in 2003. Or is it 2002?

Trash Amy Goodman can't cover war resisters. She can't cover anything about the illegal war. Apparently, we're not allowed to talk about or cover the ongoing, illegal war. We can only return to (over and over) the topic of how the illegal war was sold. Over and over. Maybe there's someone in the US that hasn't heard that story? Or maybe we all have to wait patiently for Gramps to finish his story, take his medicine and go on to bed?

As per usual, Bill Moyers' speech glad-hands various males. As usual, no one is ever supposed to notice that the same stump speech he's delivered every year for five years ignores women.

And, just like last year, Filth Goodman devoting her show to Moyers means that the very FEW slots at that stupid conference that were for minorities get no attention. But Goody will broadcast Moyers -- for the hour! -- saying the same damn thing one more time. (Is he a wax figure with a voice box?) The voices that are silenced? They'll remain so. Moyers has an hour of primetime every Friday on PBS to offer his thoughts. It's as if Rosa Clemente was just wasting her time at the same conference last year. No one listened. No one making programming decisions listened. Clemente asked where were the people of color, the women, where was anyone who wasn't named Chomsky or Zinn or . . . Really, when do women (of all races), when do people of color get to step forward in Panhandle Media? Was their love-fest with Barack just a way to avoid ever owning up to their own damn prejudice that continues to keep the voices presented White and Straight and Male?

If you heard Rosa Clemente last year, you were very lucky. She had a ton to say and she said it beautifully. If you listen to Goody (and everyone will follow her 'lead') today, you're getting nothing but worthless crap. You've heard the Moyers' speech. You heard it last year. You'll hear it next year. As far as I can tell, the only updates are he dropped his racist attempt to talk "Black" (when he imitated a slave last year), he added Scotty's book, he did a shout out to Danny Schechter (for a blog post, sadly -- apparently Bill didn't catch Danny's latest documentary) and he quoted Arlo Guthrie. I doubt Rosa Clemente would quote Arlo Guthrie. I doubt she'd be referencing one White man after another. But that's because her perspective is different and for all the LIES that Panhandle Media offers diversity, it's the same ____ing voice over and over: Straight, White, Male.

Panhandle Media's a disgrace. But, hey, they cheerleaded Barack (as "Black," he's bi-racial, but that's too much diversity for Panhandle Media) so no one should expect them to actually do anything to present a place at the table for diversity, apparently. (In fairness to Moyers, he's doing the conference a favor by speaking there. His name attracts coverage from the mainstream. But especially because it attracts mainstream attention, it's incumbent upon Panhandle Media to cover the voices that ARE NOT covered.)

From Ashraf Khalil's "Iraq pledges closer ties with Iran" (Los Angeles Times):

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki, in a visit to Iran where he met Sunday with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, pledged closer ties between the two neighbors at the same time Baghdad is negotiating a long-term security agreement with the U.S.
The proposed pact with Washington would establish a legal framework for the continued presence of U.S. troops in Iraq after the United Nations mandate expires at the end of this year.
Iranian officials have repeatedly expressed concerns in recent weeks that the agreement would simply formalize the presence of dozens of American military bases.
In a round-table public affairs program broadcast on Iranian television, one panelist compared American bases in Iraq to the installation of Russian missiles in Cuba during the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Andrew E. Kramer covers that in this morning's New York Times and we noted the topic last night. Of more interest in Kramer's "Iraqi Premier Tells Iran Not to Fear U.S. Presence" is:

Even as Mr. Maliki met with officials in Tehran, the United States military released a statement saying soldiers had captured the leader of an Iranian-backed assassination squad who had smuggled fighters in and out of Iran for training. American soldiers raiding a house in eastern Baghdad detained the man on Sunday, the military said.
The United States military regularly announces the detention of militia fighters it says are operating with Iranian support. Iranian authorities deny they have a hand in the fighting.

Kramer also notes Sunday's violence including the deaths of a US service member in Baghdad (roadside bomb) and another in Kirkuk ("suicide bomber") in an attack that "wounded 18 American soldiers." Kramer also notes Turkey's assault but we'll note this from Reuters on it:

Three members of the separatist Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) were killed in clashes with Turkish troops in eastern Turkey, while a soldier was killed by a mine near the Iraqi border, army sources said.
The PKK guerrillas were killed in the eastern province of Tunceli late on Sunday and an operation against the rebels continued on Monday.

Not abour Iraq, but Damien Cave has an important article on the front page of this morning's New York Times. Ava and I'll write about it today for tomorrow's Hilda's Mix.

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