Monday, 30 March 2015

Election Starting Pistol Sounded

You may be mistaken in thinking that the election campaign began a long time ago but today is the official starting pistol as Dave turns up to the Queens pad and asks her nicely to dissolve Parliament and then it's a six week race to May 7th and voting day.
What never changes is the predictability of the whole thing so we can expect to see a baby being kissed, burger/ice cream eating depending on the weather, an off the cuff remark picked up by a microphone possibly left on the interviewees shirt, Nigel Farage holding a pint of beer and someone dressed as Elvis losing their £500 deposit.
Something we can guarantee is that the loser will reluctantly make some noise about stepping aside and make a tearful goodbye speech and tender their resignation to make way for new party leaders.
One person who we will probably say goodbye to is Nick Clegg who faces the walk of shame out of Downing Street but it is uncertain if Dave Cameron and George Osborne will join him being dragged by the hair out of number 10 or the younger Miliband of Labour falling upon his sword to be replaced by an older Miliband we will find out soon.
Our old friend Google Trends has an impressive record of correctly choosing the winners of elections and with 38 days to go it is showing a thumping win for Labour which is very much against the polls i am seeing which has the Conservatives and Labour neck and neck at the moment so i wouldn't bet the rent money on Prime Minister Miliband just yet.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

Other Political Parties Are Also Available

The next Prime Minister is only going to come from the Conservative or Labour Party with the Lib Dems, SNP and UKIP making up the numbers but each election we also get a chance to put our cross next to some of the lesser known parties, many of who pay the £500 deposit and then lose it as they do not gain the required 5% of the votes cast in that constituency to receive it back again.
So if you don't want to vote for any of the mainstream parties you can always go straight towards the bottom of the ballot paper where the minor parties live.
Parties such as the Cannabis Is Safer Than Alcohol Party, No Candidate Deserves My Vote Party, The Pirate Party, The Common Good Party, the Idle Toad Party, the Roman Party, the Church of the Militant Elvis Party, Fancy Dress Party and the long running Official Monster Raving Loony Party.
With the way things are going we could see the prospect of a gurning lunatic with ridiculous policies gaining seats in Parliament, or UKIP as they are also called.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Stop Moving Easter Around

According to people who know about these things, the earliest possible date for Easter is March 22nd and the the latest possible date for Easter is April 25th and this year it falls on April 5 which means as my Birthday is 4 days earlier, i am sure to be unwrapping an Easter Egg this year.
Being a religious holiday, Easter is the day Jesus apparently arose from the dead but unlike Christmas nobody seems to be able to pin a date on it which is why it wanders around the calendar but apart from eating our own weight in chocolate, Easter is very much the poor relation of religious time off work.
The Easter Bunny is no substitute for Christmas's Santa and i have never heard a song wishing it could be Easter Everyday or excitedly singing that the Easter Bunny is coming to Town so you better behave or you won't get that Cadbury's Button Egg. 
It is also the holiday when us Atheists don't get it in the ear from religious types about celebrating something that we dismiss the rest of the year which means i am unable to use my well worn pithy reply that i don't believe in ghosts but it doesn't stop me celebrating Halloween.
As Christmas has long moved on from being about Jesus and wise men and is now all about Santa and red nosed reindeer's, i think whoever makes the decisions on these things should say Easter is on a certain date each year and from now on it's called Chocolate Egg Day and let's knock this religion thing on the head altogether because lets be honest, it's no fun sitting in a dreary church listening to a vicar try to make sense out of a collection of random folk tales that were written a few thousand years ago.

US Staying With The Death Penalty

In the wake of a worldwide boycott of US departments of correction, led by the European Union i am happy to say, States with the death penalty have been struggling to acquire the medical drugs used in lethal injections and with supplies at an all time low, some states have come up with a solution, one of which is let's shoot 'em instead.
Utah has revived the firing squad, Tennessee has moved to bring back the electric chair, Missouri has publicly contemplated rebuilding its gas chamber while Oklahoma is considering introducing a new type of death by nitrogen hypoxia.
I haven't heard any calls for discussions around whether the state taking a life as a punishment for taking a life doesn't seem a very civilised way of doing things but despite it being abolished in the vast majority of countries, it still goes on in 21 countries who deal with their more unsavoury members of society by killing them.
Amnesty International have gathered together the statistics and the top state executors are China, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, United States, Yemen and Sudan.
Looking at the names of the countries on the list, i'm surprised the Americans are not shamed at finding themselves included with such company in the way they treat their prisoners and are instead  just finding another way to stay part of that particular gang.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Why Not The SNP?

Unless someone moved the border without telling me, Scotland is part of Great Britain so i'm not sure why the Scottish National Party are being treated as outsiders by the Conservative Party while rumours persist that after the election Labour will make a coalition with the Scottish Party.
Scotland's new First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has a list of demands for the Labour Party which chime prefect with what the left stands for, an end to austerity, spending cuts, scrapping Trident, the abolition of the House of Lords and reform of the voting system.
How can anyone on the left possibly be against any of those demands which is why the right wing are so against it.
Austerity has always been a Conservative policy to reduce Government and keep the downtrodden trodden down and enrich the guys at the top and spending cuts have been a disaster. The police are so under-staffed that they are shouting loud and clear that they can't do their job properly and try and get anything done by a Government department where staff numbers have been decimated, the Passport Office are swamped and HMRC are months behind with dealing with post and prepare to spend hours listening to music trying to get through on the phone to a tax adviser.
Trident is an expensive toy costing us upwards of £70 billion for a weapon we will never use just so we can stroll around saying we have a nuclear weapon and the voting system is in dire need of transformation to a proportional representation system so we don't end up with the absurd decision of the Government being voted in by a third of the votes.
The Conservatives have been the nasty party, the 400% rise on food banks under their ownership of the Number 10 keys should mean them being booted out come May 8th and Labour should point out that Scotland is part of Great Britain and it is wrong to squeal that a Scottish Party should not be making decisions that affect England while having no such concerns about English Parties making such decisions for Scotland, Wales or the Northern Irish.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Clarkson Sacked

Considering that Jeremy Clarksons whole shtick was that he was a grown man acting like an idiot i'm sure it wont take the BBC long to find a suitable replacement after they took the only reasonable approach that they could and sacked him.
The BBC director general, Tony Hall, said that following the investigation the BBC had decided not to renew Clarkson’s contract, saying the presenter had 'crossed a line'.
The attack left the producer, Oisin Tymon, with a split lip and now the police are looking at charging Clarkson with possible assault charges.
The BBC has promised that Top Gear as a show will continue but it may have a very different line up as all three presenters’ contracts were due to run out at the end of this month and when asked about his future on the show, James May said: 'We are very much the three of us a package. It works for complicated reasons that a lot of people don’t fully understand. So that will require a lot of careful thought'.
As long as the BBC choose the right people to replace them, Chris Evans seems to be a name sounded out about replacing Clarkson, everything should work out fine and we will have one less violent idiot to watch although i am sure he will be snapped up by another channel after a short break.
Buenos Aires is nice this time of year i hear Jezza, and i can even suggest a number plate for you this trip that i am sure the Argentinians would find agreeable, JC T02SER.

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey

Tucked away on one of the far flung satellite channels i stumbled across a programme called Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey presented by Neil deGrasse Tyson.
To my surprise it had the FOX logo on the bottom of the screen which surprised me as i associate FOX with Rupert Murdoch who isn't exactly known for high brow programming and then i wondered just how well a programme that scientifically explained the how, when and why we got here went down with science denying Evangelicals in America.
The excellent presenter, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and his cosmic calendar must have had the teeth grinding on the religious right as the calendar shows a universe that is 13.8 billion years and an earth that is 4.5 billion years old.
It appears that the bible bashers don't accept the challenge with proof or evidence, they just block out the bits they don't like as several TV stations pasted an advertisement break over the bit regarding evolution in the episode.
To much delight he dismissed the 6,000 year old earth theory by explaining that the dead stars and galaxies we still see in the night sky, explaining the time light takes to travel to us, he showed viewers that stars we look at in the sky could not be less than 6,000 years old, because if they were, we could not see them.
Tyson really went for the religionists jugular by explaining how Noah’s great flood never happened, or worse, was a rehashing of another story, the Epic of Gilgamesh, that predates the great flood and show that the Bible is nothing but copies of earlier texts, retold with the names changed.
The barb at the end of the final episode was said with relish: 'One of things I love about science is that we don't have to pretend we have all the answers'.
In your face creationists who believe all they do based on a book of stories while scientists have a library of books, evidence, fossils and DNA as high as a mountain to base their beliefs on and on top of all that the wonderful Neil deGrasse Tyson who FOX should sign up to present all their shows whatever the subject matter.
Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey should be shown in every school to children curious about how we got here and what makes the universe work because anyone who has seen the news lately will know that what we need is a bit less religion in the World. 

Where's The Money Gone Dave?

George Osbourne tells us the sun is shining and UK is walking tall as we strive bravely onwards out of recession and into a bright future.
I know politicians use all sort of spin to make their point but the bottom line is how much we owed as a country when Cameron took over and how much we owe now after 5 years of austerity.
The figures from HM Treasury shows The UK Nation Debt in 2010 was £0.76 trillion and today we owe £1.36 trillion.
Now i don't make any claims to be an economist but to me that seems that we owe almost twice as much as we did after Dave and George got their grubby little hands on the economy.
A favourite line from the Conservatives is to blame the 'mess that they inherited from Labour' but the vast majority of the debt they inherited was from Labour having to bail out the greedy bankers to the tune of tens of billions, the Conservatives have no such excuse.
They have the extra money from the student tuition fees, increased VAT, the slashed public services and the severe austerity measures so how can they have almost doubled what we owe while telling us they are making savings?
All politicians of all shades hide the economic truth behind lines such as 'in real terms' and 'adjusted for Purchasing Power Parity' but the one figure is the one on the bottom of the balance sheet and it says at the start of the Tory reign we owed £0.76 and now at the end of it we owe £1.36 trillion and i think we should be told what have they been spending it on because from where i am sitting it isn't being spent on us!

Farage Protest Backfires

Just let us recap on the wisdom of UKIP over recent times.
According to Nigel and his broad: 'Businesses should be allowed to refuse services to women and gay people', the recent UK storms floods are a result of allowing Gay Marriage, working mothers are worth less than men, women who don't clean behind the fridge are 'sluts', women wanting to breastfeed should find a corner out of the way and we should stop sending aid to bongo bongo land.
How ironic then that the demonstrators who turned up at the George & Dragon pub in fancy dress where he was eating his Sunday lunch were gays, women, breast feeding mums and immigrants.
The UKIP leader ranted at the 'scum' as he called them saying that they scared his children who he left in the pub to be picked up by a relative some time later.  
It must have been distressing for the kids, it's not their fault their dad such a mass of intolerance but a bit of an own goal certainly but Farage can't expect to be immune from protest while at the same time spending his days protesting about others.
Although the protesters were in fancy dress, singing songs and peacefully protesting, to do it while he is 'off duty' and enjoying a day out with his family can't be condoned.
Wait until he is peddling his UKIP nonsense and then he is fair game for whatever is thrown at him, to do this just gains him sympathy.

Political Celebrity Endorsement

Who hasn't been stood in a voting booth with the pencil poised and a voting sheet before you and as you ponder which way to vote your mind has began to wonder to who would the lady from the mid-eighties cop show Dempsey and Makepeace vote for?
Glynis Barber is a Labour Party supporter so that makes the choice much easier but what it you were not a fan of police shows from the time of padded shoulders and polka dot skirts?
Luckily celebrities are not slow in coming forward with their view on who we should be voting into office so we can mine the rich seam of information gleaned from party political literature, fund raising parties and celebrities  who have had a selfies taken with a party leader giving a cheesy grin and a thumbs up pose.

In the blue corner, supporting David Cameron and the Conservative Party we have the following: William 'Ken Barlow' Roche, Michael Caine, Geri 'Ginger Spice' Halliwell, Gary Barlow, Steve 'Interesting' Davis, Jim Davidson, Ian Botham, Andrew Lloyd Webber,  Joan Collins, Gary Numan, Phil Collins, Frank Bruno,  Ronnie Corbett, Paul Daniels, Jeremy Clarkson, Carol Vorderman, Andy McNab, Cilla Black, Lulu, Peter Stringfellow, Anneka Rice, Michael Brandon, Errol Brown, Judith Chalmers, Ken Dodd, Lynsey de Paul, Bryan Ferry, Tony Hadley, Jimmy Tarbuck, Marco Pierre White, Anthony Worral Thompson, Bill Wyman, Trevor Brooking, Tony Cottee, Garth Crooks, Nick Faldo and Graham Gooch.

Coming out of the red corner and waving Ed Miliband flags are:
David Tennant, Richard Wilson, Noel Gallagher, Tracey Ullman, Alan Sugar, Cheryl Cole, Eddie Izzard, JK Rowling, Lily Allen, Stephen Fry, Bianca Jagger, Melvyn Bragg, Janet Street-Porter, Patrick Stewart, Ross Kemp, Bill Bailey, Tony 'Baldrick' Robinson, Duncan Bannatyne, Dawn French, Alex Ferguson, Angela Lansbury, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman, Jeremy Irons, Ben Elton, Jo Brand, Stephen Hawking, Dermot O'Leary, Lewis Hamilton, Delia Smith, Maureen Lipman and Beverly Knight.

In the yellow corner wearing 'I Love Nick' t-shirts are the Liberal Democrats sprinkling of celebrities which include:
John Cleese, Daniel Radcliffe, Colin Firth, Brian Eno, Floella Benjamin, Honor Blackman, Richard Dawkins, Heather Mills, Kate Winslet, Andrew Motion, Chris Martin, Judi Dench and Sandi Toksvig.

Munching muesli bars in the final corner is Green Party celebrities such as:
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Mark Thomas, Philip Pullman, Joanna Lumley, Thom Yorke, Tim Roth and David Icke.

Outside in the cheap seats and looking around uneasily we have the UKIP supporters:
Tim Rice, Des Lynam, Mike Read and Rustie Lee.

So if you are finding it hard to decide which party deserves to run our lives for the next five years, consider the names backing the parties and let a star make the decision for you. Or Geri Halliwell.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

The Price Of Netanyahu's Victory

The Israeli/American relationship has always appeared very one sided to me with Israel receiving financial and diplomatic cover it requires at the United Nations as it continues it's massive persecution and oppression of the Palestinians and in return America gets the vitriol for supporting the hated regime in Tel Aviv.
As the votes are counted it appears that Benjamin Netanyahu has won the Israeli election but that has to come at a cost to relations with the only real ally Israel has on the World stage.
Obama and Netanyahu were already on shaky terms and the Obama administration were not slow to let it be known what they thought of Netanyahu's decision to turn up at Congress the other week and in unusually strong terms they have condemned the Israel Prime Ministers words in the last days of the election as 'deeply concerning and divisive' and 'rhetoric that seeks to marginalise one segment of their population'.
As the Palestinians are set to join the International Criminal Court on April 1 and intend to pursue war crimes charges against Israel over its occupation of the West Bank and last year's war in Gaza, there could not be a worst time for Israel to lose the support of the one country that has its back but it was telling that Netanyahu's telephone has not rang yet with the obligatory congratulatory message from the White House, a call which the White House said would be made in the coming days. 
Most galling for Americans is the abandonment of the commitment to negotiate a Palestinian state which has been the basis of more than two decades of Middle East peacemaking and the promise to go on building settlements on occupied land.
US Secretary of State John Kerry, it seems, wasted nine months intense shuttle diplomacy based on Mr Netanyahu expressing support for the idea when all along he had no intention of fulfilling the promise and played the White House for suckers on the question of a two-state solution.
How this all plays out will be shown when the inevitable calls for boycotts, diplomatic pressure or action against Israel in the United Nations rears its head but Israel appears even further isolated and exposed today and that can only be a good thing that some of the scales have fallen from the eyes of the United States in dealing with Netanyahu and an Israel that has no intention of seeking peace with its neighbours until it has stolen enough of its land to make a separate Palestinian state untenable.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Where's The Peace Then Tony?

Considering his role in bringing war to the Middle East, Tony Blair was always a bit of a strange choice to be a special envoy to bring peace to the region but seven years later we can look back on the former Prime Minister's work and ask what the hell has he been doing for the past seven years?
Obviously the same question has occurred to the UN, EU, USA and Russians because they have all agreed to tell him to take a hike, or 'amend his role' in polite political speech.
Not that those of us who want to see Blair held accountable for his violations of international law and serial crimes against humanity will get our wish but his star is certainly waning and i have yet to hear the outcry from Blair supporters that removing him from the peace process the Middle East will now become a cauldron of terrorism and turmoil.
Making him a Peace Envoy was just rubbing salt in the gaping wound he himself created so now if only Israel vote Netanyahu out of power this week and replace him with someone less keen to kill as many Palestinians as possible and grab their land, we will have two less warmongering imbeciles bumbling around the Middle East bringing mayhem and destruction and that has to be a good thing.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Origins Of The Afghan War

The Afghanistan War has been ongoing for thirteen years and today there was a ceremony to mark the end of the operation and remember the war dead but for many the beginning of the conflict has become hazy and when we hear of the sacrifice and the tribute to the military personnel who died we could be forgiven for thinking that they gave their lives in a noble cause.
One of the faces in the crowd at St Paul's Cathedral was Tony Blair, the man who sent the British troops into Afghanistan in 2001 and who today repeated his line that the decision to deploy British troops in Afghanistan: 'had been justified'.
Perhaps if we clear some of the haze and go back to the start we can get a clue of just how justified it was.
Bin Laden's group, Al Queada, masterminded the Twin Tower attacks in 2001 and as he was being sheltered by the Afghan rulers, the Taliban, American sights turned in that direction.
The President, George W Bush, gave the the Taliban an ultimatum to hand him over or face the wrath of the US military who would militarily force them from power. They refused, instead offering to hand him to a third party but Bush refused the offer and invoked the NATO charter and in October 2001, Operation Enduring Freedom was launched.
So it seems that the entire adventure was to be back up for Americas removal of the Taliban as punishment for not handing over Osama Bin Laden. If they had 'coughed him up' as George W Bush said at the time, then America would step back and leave the Taliban in Government. We can assume that also meant turning a blind eye to the terrorist training camps, lack of human rights, female oppression and blooming poppy fields which all became a justification afterwards.
So our objective was to engage upon a war of choice with Afghanistan in order to remove the Taliban from power and catch Osama Bin Laden and bring him to justice.
The Taliban were quickly removed from Government but are still today causing havoc in the country but we don't seem to have no problem with leaving the citizens of the country we invaded to it's fate in the face of murderous terrorists.
So, we that's why we went there and thirteen years later remain there and the families of 453 soldiers are grieving and may question Blair's justification and why when the politicians begin to try and re-write the history of the Afghan War as a just and righteous conflict, we will know otherwise.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

800,000 Idiots Defending Clarkson

It cannot be denied that Jeremy Clarkson is a monumental bell-end and idiot of biblical proportions and i just cannot understand the 800,000 people who are signing a petition that he should keep his job.
I assume that the 800,000 would be okay with a colleague thumping them and then the management saying to them that they won't take any action against the offender because he is popular.
It should be a no-brainer and Clarkson should be sacked and another presenter drafted into replace him, it can't be that hard to get someone in who acts like an idiot for an hour a week.
This series of Top Gear has been on a downward trajectory from the second week when they seemed to cut back on the challenges which is what most people tune in for and devoted more time to cars which most people sleep through while waiting for the challenges section to start.       
Funny how David Cameron can take the time to visit a TV studio to stick up for his friend but as the other friends he has defended were Andy Coulson who is currently serving 18 months in prison and Rebekah Brooks who was charged with conspiring to pervert the course of justice he may want to pick his friends a bit more carefully. 
As Clarksons contract is up for review at the end of the month i expect the BBC investigation to drag its heels and the contract will lapse and the violent bigot will slope off to Sky and nobody need be sacked and all the cracks will be papered over and the only person hurt is the poor guy who was in the way when the idiot found out there was no hot meal for him.

Saturday, 7 March 2015

UK Eurovision Song 2015

This year's UK entry for the Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna has been announced and it's a 1920's style ditty called 'Still in Love With You' from Electro Velvet.
The UK obviously isn’t going to win Eurovision this year, far too much bitterness towards us on the green and pleasant land and the one thing you need most to win Eurovision is friends, and we ain't got any except Ireland and Malta who throw us a few crumbs each year but we invariably always end up on the right hand side of the screen with the other spotty, wheezy unpopular kids such as France and Moldova.
So we could submit the perfect song and it still wouldn't win but that is what is so exciting about Eurovision, the best song doesn't always win which is why we are all off to Austria this year  courtesy of a so-so song sung by a very pretty guy in a dress, full make-up and a beard.
People will now analyse the Cole Porter-esque song which sounds like it has been lifted from the Kit-Kat Club and i am going to stick my neck out and predict that we will be on the left hand side of the screen this time around, albeit towards the bottom.
We have tried new acts, beloved National Treasure acts, the World famous and boy bands with a massive Europe wide following and still stunk the contest out and nobody is expecting any different this time so here's why i am confident that this a year at least we won't be getting sneered at by the Eastern Europeans.
Misplaced faith maybe but i think the BBC have been smart and the song harks back to a time when Britain had a decent reputation and our fellow Europeans looked towards our island as the cool, hip place it used to be. 
The song is quirky, energetic, fun and original but mostly it will inspire a nostalgic nod towards a former England from Europeans for the era of the Roaring Twenties, the Charleston, Hemingway, Speakeasy's, Downton Abbey, the Great Gatsby, Charlie Chaplin, Flappers, T.S. Eliot and Jeeves and Wooster.
We may have been left holding the bag for what we have been up-to for the last couple of decades but they have been clever to swerve that by focusing on when we were Hotsy-Totsy as they said back then.

Return Cheque To Sender

A Labour general election candidate has turned down a campaign donation from Tony Blair.
Lesley Brennan, who is standing in Dundee East, tweeted that she had rejected £1,000 she had received from the ex-Labour leader.
The money is from a war chest of more than £100,000 that the former prime minister has given to help the party win 106 key seats. Brennan, currently a councillor for the East End area of Dundee, is seeking to overturn a majority of 1,821 held by the SNP.
This morning she tweeted: 'Received donation from Tony Blair. Instinct was to not accept. Discussed with team. Dundee East is not accepting the £1000.'
There you go Labour candidates around the UK, if you honestly believe that Iraq was wrong and you want to show some principles - stand up and show it by sending the cheque back to Blair and politely telling him where he can stick it.

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Cameron Waving White Flag Over Debates

Much kerfuffle over the will he-won't he turn up for the debates in the build up to the General Election with David Cameron now saying he is only willing to do one of the three planned.
As the current leader, it is obvious that the television stations want him there but he had been trying to duck out of them ever since the idea was announced, first saying he wanted the Green Party to be involved and once the invite was sent out to them, now saying he wants the DUP to be there.
He obviously has everything to lose while the other parties have everything to gain so it is understandable why he want to swerve them but i would not drag him kicking and screaming in front of the cameras and empty-chair him.
The rest then have a free shot to say what a failure he has been as a PM and he doesn't have the confidence in what he and his Government had achieved to come onto TV and defend them and generally kick him and his party around for 90 minutes.
Then when he is watching the removal van carry out his furniture from number 10 on May 8th he can look back and realise that his petulance and cowardliness has cost him dear.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Same Old Nonsense From Netanyahu

The last time the Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, washed up in America to warn about Iran he came armed with a six year olds drawing of a cartoon bomb but so serious is he this time around that he didn't visit a nursery this time around and just came armed with rhetoric.
While as popular as a bacon sandwich in Tel Aviv elsewhere, he is always assured of a warm welcome by the religious right in America and he tried to hit every button he could to try and get the Iran nuclear deal called off.
He went for the scare tactics that any deal would: 'inevitably lead to a nuclear armed Iran whose unbridled aggression will inevitably lead to a nuclear war' and then lurched to a good old favourite that Iran was: 'weeks away from having enough enriched uranium for an entire arsenal of nuclear weapons' and ended with another favourite of invoking the holocaust with: 'The days where the Jewish people remain passive in the face of genocidal enemies, those days are over'.
Not that anything in this is new as almost two decades ago, in 1996, Netanyahu addressed the American Congress and warned: 'If Iran were to acquire nuclear weapons, this could presage catastrophic consequences, not only for my country, and not only for the Middle East, but for all mankind' adding that 'the deadline for attaining this goal is getting extremely close'.
Almost 20 years later that deadline has apparently still not passed, but Netanyahu is still making dire predictions about an imminent Iranian nuclear weapon. Four years before that particular speech, in 1992, Netanyahu advised the Israeli Knesset that Iran was 'three to five years' away from reaching nuclear weapons capability, and that this threat had to be 'uprooted by an international front headed by the U.S.'
In 1995 he asserted that Iran would have a nuclear weapon in 'three to five years' and then we skip forward to 2009 where Netanyahu informed a visiting Congressional delegation that Iran was 'probably one or two years away from developing weapons capability' although in 2012 he said that Iran was just 'a few months away from attaining nuclear capabilities'.
I am sure that despite all the above, some will see the Prime Minister as a credible voice on this issue even if he just repeated much the same things he’s been saying for the past two decades about an impending Iranian nuclear threat, and the short of thinking can always be counted on to believe him.

Sunday, 1 March 2015

West's Mad Foreign Policy

To say the Wests foreign policy is a bit shortsighted sometimes would be like saying Kim Kardashians backside is a bit on the large side. Basically, when a conflict flares up somewhere that threatens our interests, our first thought is who can we arm that is willing to fight for our side, and then once identified send them as many weapons as we think it will take to keep our good despot in power or remove the bad despot and allow us to put in a good despot.
Some may argue that is is preferable to sending our own troops in but it rarely ends the way we figure.
Most people of a certain age will remember the Soviets invading Afghanistan and then spending 10 long years before finally giving up trying to oust a regime backed by the West's arms.
Sure it stopped the country falling to the rule of Communism, but failed dramatically in that they then changed their name to the Taliban, joined up with Al Queada and used all those weapons and all of that training we gave them to fight us in a decade long war.
There was that famous picture of Donald Rumsfeld meeting with Saddam Hussein, shaking hands on a arms deal for Iraq to use on Iran who was the Wests enemy, and as Iraq was fighting them, we were willing to send them the weapons they needed to do it therefore building the military and giving him the WMD's that we eventually went into Iraq to destroy unaware that he had actually beaten us to it and rather ungraciously got rid of them years before.
We also repeated the trick in Syria where we armed the anti-Government forces who become more and more brutal and called themselves ISIS and began beheading Westerners and flying black flags.
Now the US wants to arm the Ukraine because when there is a chance of peace, pouring in more weapons always helps The Wests policy seems to have been and continues to today that in a tinderbox situation, someone will take power, and we'll hope that they like us, and, if not, we'll send more to someone else in the country willing to start another fight with a newer and fancier arsenal.
On the bright side, a handful of old men are making a killing the entire time while a bunch of young men are just making a killing and you can;t see that ending anytime soon.