Archive for July, 2006
by William S. Lind
With Hezbollah’s entry into the war between Israel and Hamas, Fourth Generation war has taken another developmental step forward. For the first time, a non-state entity has gone to war with a state not by waging an insurgency against a state invader, but across an international boundary. Again we see how those who define 4GW simply as insurgency are looking at only a small part of the picture.
I think the stakes in the Israel-Hezbollah-Hamas war are significantly higher than most observers understand. If Hezbollah and Hamas win – and winning just means surviving, given that Israel’s objective is to destroy both entities – a powerful state will have suffered a new kind of defeat, again, a defeat across at least one international boundary and maybe two, depending on how one defines Gaza’s border. The balance between states and 4GW forces will be altered world-wide, and not to a trivial degree.
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Sunday July 16, 2006
Israel steeply escalated its military campaign against Hizbollah in Lebanon yesterday with a series of air strikes that left more than 35 civilians dead, including a single strike on a convoy of families fleeing the fighting in a village near Tyre in the south of the country that killed more than 20 people, most of them children.
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Rumor has it that Co. Leg. Maria Whyte is running for Democratic Committeewoman in ten different districts.
Say it ain’t so Maria!
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Israeli warplanes demolished the last bridge on the main Beirut-Damascus highway — over the Litani River, six miles from the Syrian border — trying to complete their seal on Lebanon. The strike killed three civilians driving on the bridge.
In the afternoon, Israeli forces hit central Beirut, striking the port and a lighthouse on a posh seafront boulevard, where people stroll in the evening or jog in the early mornings. It is a few hundred yards from the campus of the American University of Beirut. The seaport is adjacent to downtown Beirut, a district rebuilt at a cost of billions of dollars after the 1975-1990 civil war.
Beirut residents voice concern over conflict
An Israeli air raid has killed at least 17 Lebanese civilians who were fleeing southern border areas.
Women and children were among those killed when the convoy was hit. “Bodies litter the road,” an eyewitness said.
Israel has expanded its campaign launched after Hezbollah militants seized two Israeli soldiers. More than 70 Lebanese have been killed.
Posted in War | 4 Comments »
The family took an impromptu walk on the Bird Island Pier last Saturday. This site allows you to walk from Bird Island to the mouth of the Niagara River. It’s a spectacular walkway!
However, it needs maintenance badly.
Also, some information about the various sites would be nice. You walk by the Peace Bridge and there’s nothing to mark the historic edifice.
Perhaps the Olmsted people could adopt this walkway. We saw just a few walkers on a beautiful summer evening.
Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments »
Paul Tokasz has suddenly decided not to seek re-election after spending more than a month telling voters that we he was running.
Now, it’s too late for anyone to file to run in the primary election in that one-party, gerrymandered district. So, the machine will anoint a successor. Like a royal succession. The new guy will then owe his career to the bosses and will do their bidding.
Yet another reason why state legislative elections are a joke.
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It’s such a one-sided drubbing that Norah starts to interrupt her in frustration.
Let’s end that foolish war!
For advanced predictions on how it would turn out, see–
The solution to all this is obvious. The Kurds, Shiites, and Sunnis should each form their own separate republics and allow people in their domains the right to leave or stay and live in freedom. (For you neoconservatives, freedom means doing what you will with what you own. It has nothing to do with voting). If each of these would-be republics paid me a one million dollar consulting fee (Swiss Federal Bank, Account No. 983570957187) for this advice and followed it, it would be an infinitesimal fraction of the money and lives that will be wasted trying to force these disparate groups to live together.
Credit to Stephen Carson at the LRC Blog
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Free Buffalo is seeking film students to help us make a thirty second TV ad. You won’t get rich, but you may get famous!
Call me at 435-8918.
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Happy 4th of July from Free New York, WNY’s only explicitly Jeffersonian group.
For some excellent commentary on the significance of this date, see:
THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE
Here is the complete text of the Declaration of Independence. The original spelling and capitalization has been retained.
(Adopted by Congress on July 4, 1776)
The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America
When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. –Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining in the meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.
He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.
He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies without the consent of our legislature.
He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:
For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states:
For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing taxes on us without our consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury:
For transporting us beyond seas to be tried for pretended offenses:
For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule in these colonies:
For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments:
For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble terms: our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have we been wanting in attention to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace friends.
We, therefore, the representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name, and by the authority of the good people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as free and independent states, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent states may of right do. And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.
New Hampshire: Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton
Massachusetts: John Hancock, Samual Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island: Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery
Connecticut: Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott
New York: William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris
New Jersey: Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark
Pennsylvania: Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross
Delaware: Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean
Maryland: Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton
Virginia: George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton
North Carolina: William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn
South Carolina: Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton
Georgia: Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton
Posted in National | 2 Comments »
Today’s great piece by Tom Precious about how the special interests run Albany like a private government is the perfect complement to Free Buffalo’s latest study about what a joke state legislative elections are.
Organized labor in New York will remember June 2006 as the month they ruled the State Capitol.
Unions long have enjoyed great friends in the State Legislature. But nothing can compare to the victories they won during the final weeks of this year’s session, according to government officials, lobbyists and representatives of school boards and local governments.
Posted in New York | 3 Comments »
The theory of democracy is that elected officials have the right to rule because they were chosen in free, fair, and competitive elections which offer people a real choice as opposed to different versions of the status quo. In Buffalo, Western New York and New York State generally, that’s a “beautiful theory killed by ugly facts.”
New York voters face a classic “Catch 22” scenario. To make elections remotely fair, we need to unseat the incumbents who created a rigged system. But we can’t do that because the system is rigged.
Posted in New York | 3 Comments »
How many times in American history has a grassroots citizen movement taken power from the ruling establishment by non-violent methods and significantly reduced the size and power of the government?
I can only think of one time—Jefferson’s nonviolent revolution of 1800 when his small “r” republicans kicked the Federalists out of power and did indeed, in his first term, shrink government.
That lone example is not helpful to our chances. It was 206 years ago and was led by “the man of millennium.” The government was not nearly as big and powerful and well-entrenched as this one is. The Federalists had only been in power for 12 years. The monster we are fighting has been built up slowly for nearly a hundred years.
What we’re trying to accomplish has never been done before in American history or in anyone else’s history that I know of.
Also, every prior effort to reform government in this area in recent decades failed. And every prior effort to elect large numbers of reformers has also failed. Last year two reformers were elected under unusual circumstances. Both are outvoted and have been unable to roll back government.
Free Buffalo has been in business for about one year. Guess what? We haven’t won the war yet.
But we have not even begun to fight!
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