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Ignorant, Mean-Spirited Jerks — Why Now?
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Ignorant, Mean-Spirited Jerks

Up front it needs to be understood that Britain and Iran are not at war. The British military personnel were not captured as prisoners of war; they were arrested for violating Iranian territorial waters. Their confinement was not governed by the Geneva Conventions, but by Iranian criminal procedure and the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.

For some reason the British government does not look kindly on junior officers who start wars without permission. This was a diplomatic problem from the start, not a military problem. Dying for Queen and country is all well and good, but you should ask first if the Queen and country want you to die.

People who have spent entirely too much time with books like The Arab Mind, are saying that Iran won and has a propaganda coup. I would suggest that the people who are saying this are the only ones who believe it. Elements in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard came too damn close to starting a war that the ruling circles of the country did not want. The officer who was awarded a medal for his actions should enjoy it in his “retirement.”

The BBC looks at the Murky dividing lines of Shatt al-Arab, and notes there is no clear indication of whether this took place in Iraqi or Iranian waters, because there is no formal agreement on where the line goes. The boundary that the British are claiming is rather generous to Iraq, which has a very small spit of land making contact with the Gulf. Iran and Iraq need to resolve the ambiguity rather quickly.

Some have faulted the HMS Cornwall for being too far away to lend support. Just as the British government doesn’t appreciate officers who start wars, the Admiralty takes a dim view of officers who run their vessels aground. The Cornwall has a 24-foot draught, and the northern Persian Gulf is shallow water. It’s hard to fight a ship when you are making K-turns in the ships’ channel.

Bridget Kendall, BBC diplomatic correspondent, wonders about the reality of what happened in Mystery shrouds UK sailors’ saga.

BBC Iranian affairs analyst, Pam O’Toole, looks at Who called the shots in Iran crisis?

And Mr Ahmadinejad’s role? As chairman of the council, he would have played a part in that decision-making process.

Some analysts have cheekily suggested that he was given the high-profile job of announcing the decision as a reward for his silence over the preceding weeks.

But, in reality, no-one outside a small, elite circle in Iran really knows.

Remember, Ahmadinejad said he “pardoned” the British personnel, maintaining the story that they were arrested. This is the same procedure used in the earlier occurrence of British personnel accidentally entering Iranian territory on the Shatt al-Arab.

The British personnel are home, there is no new war, and the British didn’t have to issue the demeaning type of apology the Shrubbery sent to the Chinese over the US Naval reconnaissance aircraft – that counts as a success.

A real success would be if the overwhelming majority of the world didn’t automatically believe: CIA tortured me, says Iran envoy.


1 jams o donnell { 04.08.07 at 3:42 am }

I’m glad this incident is over with no apology on our side and no harm to the captives. Not a bad result considering that the options available were pretty lousy.. oh and hearing the likes of John Bolton and rags like teh Daily Mail talking about humiliation gets my goat. What the hell did they think would solve the situation? an invasion of Iran? Idiots!

2 Bryan { 04.08.07 at 9:27 am }

It’s amazing how many people think others should die for stupid reasons. If there had been a war – all out to the last man. This was a border dispute and the British military has lost enough people recently, there is no reason to lose more.

3 Scorpio { 04.08.07 at 6:49 pm }

the people who think that a war should be started over something like this are the kind of people who want a war no matter what pretext they use.

4 Bryan { 04.08.07 at 7:20 pm }

More to the point, they what someone else to have a war. I once had to throw people like the war mongers in jail for starting bar fights over nothing, or attempting to kill a neighbor over leaves from a tree blowing into the wrong yard.

Until or unless you can resurrect the dead you should be damn careful before you start telling people to kill each other.

5 Steve Bates { 04.08.07 at 8:31 pm }

Where does the “let’s you an’ him fight” crowd come from, anyway?

All the males in my family prior to me, as well as some cousins of my generation, fought in combat, and not one of them was or is in a hurry to send anyone into a similar situation.

Who are these people, anyway? Let them sign on the line and serve in the hot spots… not that I wish that on anyone, but certainly those who advocate it for others should be willing to do that themselves.

6 Anntichrist S. Coulter { 04.08.07 at 9:24 pm }

These are the same people (the “haves,” if you will) who conscripted poor people to fight in their stead in the Civil War, the Spanish-American war, all the way up to WWI and, in much smaller numbers (because of a much more organized draft), WWII. As we have seen from Dumbya’s example, the “important” people had “other priorities” (Biggus Dickus and his FIVE DEFERRALS), and bought their dainty white asses out of Vietnam, while poor and minority men were sent in legions.

And this is one of the more vile things that I know about my alleged sperm donor (what normal people would call a “father’) is that he managed to knock my “mother” (The Fallen Uterus) up TWICE before he was 21, and her uncle just HAPPENED to be on the Greater Baton Rouge Area draft board. Coincidence or damned good blind luck? Go fucking figure. Same guy who says that women who get raped in the military “put themselves in a place they shouldn’t have been so they must’ve been prepared to get raped, surrounding themselves with aggressive men.”

Yes, I’ve attempted patricide, but never been able to make it stick.

At any rate — that’s the mentality, well, the dumbed-down redneck version of it — that allows Dumbya (and all of the other alcohol-poisoned frat boys who are running this country into the fucking DIRT nowadays) to expend the lives of “the others” (poor, non-connected, possibly minority, uneducated, hopeless, CANNON FODDER, who are worth LESS than the privileged simply by dint of their births) without so much as batting his empty, googly eyes. We are more along the lines of 3/5 of a human being to them, if that much. I guess that the chinese and central amercians and mexicans who die in their sweatshops are somewhere around TWO fifths.

We are the lesser species that must be their guardians, their servants, their pack-mules as they spread death, xenophobia, greed and hegemony over the face of the earth.

I figure that we are long-past due for a fucking revolt. There’s way the hell more poor people in this country than there are middle-class or rich — what’s taking so fucking long? The class warfare isn’t just a component of this fake war, it’s a driving force. The more poor motherfuckers that they murder NOW (having gotten their money’s worth on “training” them), the fewer motherfuckers who’ll need jobs, housing, healthcare, Social Security benefits, etc., later on down the road. Eugenics in modern capitalism. They’ll never be able to afford the luxury items that are at the top of the capitalist food chain, so what use are they? They can only consume the cheap plastic crap from the low-end Chinese sweat shops, so it’s not like they’re “contributing” enough to the country, as it is. They’re better off to have died “heroically” as cannon fodder while we sell Iraq to Halliburton and leave the rest of this country to the Chinese and Bechtel.

So, as long as the rich will always have their fingers in the draft-board lotteries, as long as THEY never had any need to sign-up for NG or full-service in an attempt to get an education and/or job training, then the military will be comprised almost entirely of working-class and poor motherfuckers who could never be a threat to the “haves” in matters of capitalist commerce. Ergo, who’s gonna miss ’em? Oh, right, the million-plus family members who have to bury them, after their corpses are brought home in aluminum cans in the dead of fucking night, with no president to acknowledge their sacrifice.

7 Bryan { 04.08.07 at 11:06 pm }

It’s real easy to have someone else do the fighting when you are comfortable at your keyboard. The thing that gets me is that these are the only people who seem to think someone won. The important thing is that no one lost. A couple of weeks in the brig is not exactly a new experience for most of the sailors I’ve known, and military jails are not country clubs.

The entire Iranian government had to return from their new year’s vacation, and can’t be very pleased about that. Ahmadinejad had to keep his mouth shut for a couple of weeks, which is always good. An Iranian diplomat was “discovered” and returned. The Red Cross got to see the five Iranian diplomats seized in Irbil. What in hell is supposed to be wrong that requires a war?

What could have been won by going to war? The British personnel would have been dead instantly; they had zero chance of survival! The price of gas would have doubled. Iraq would have exploded, as would have every other nation in the region. What was so damn important that people needed to die?

And while we are at it, what it hell business is it of Americans to tell the British how to run their affairs? We can’t run our own, and we think we have a right to tell other people how to run theirs?

8 Anntichrist S. Coulter { 04.09.07 at 10:42 pm }

Ahhh, but don’t forget — those “scarcity” hype-scares that drive the gas prices through the roof at every single little diplomatic/weather event/”accidental spill” — are UTTER BULLSHIT. They jack up the prices BECAUSE THEY CAN. They reduced production BECAUSE THEY CAN. They cap-off producing wells BECAUSE THEY CAN. They import oil that could be produced in THIS country, NOT on wildlife preserves or in old-growth forests, BECAUSE THEY CAN.

90% of the gas price hikes over the past 28 years have been ARTIFICIAL, and yet NOBODY CALLS THEM ON IT. What in the fuck is the Federal Trade Commission FOR???!?!?! To bend over and say, “YAH-SUH!!!” whenever Biggus Dickus wants to have CLOSED DOOR “energy meetings” with NO RECORDS TAKEN WHATSOFUCKING EVER?!??! To fellate the corporations who are “outsourcing” American jobs to the point that skilled workers have to resort to McJobs to survive??? To make sure that the mergers of giant corporations (ExxonMobil, AT&T-Bellsouth, etc.) go as smoothly and as profitably as fucking POSSIBLE??? To make sure that those no-bid GSA & Defense Department contracts are NEVER OPENED TO PUBLIC VIEW BEFORE THE CHECKS ARE CUT?!??!?!

“Deregulation.” Capitalist-pig-speak for “FUCK YOU, GIMME ALL OF IT!”

Fuck if I don’t miss the hell out of Jimmy Carter and Tip O’Neal… *sigh* Fuck, compared to the corporate thugs who are destroying the planet, I miss HOFFA!!!!!!

(At least Hoffa got JOBS for the working class, even if they were blowing a few things up here and there.)