Middle East: The dog that didn’t bark

posted at 6:10 pm on January 30, 2011 by J.E. Dyer

In the rapidly unfolding events in the Arab world over the past month, the most important feature is something that didn’t take place in an Arab nation.  In fact, what’s important about it is that it didn’t take place at all.

This interesting feature is the fact that, in the current Arab turmoil, the U.S. has done nothing – and the place where that matters the most is Lebanon. Lebanon has long been riven by predatory strategic actors; Hezbollah has been chief among them for the last 20-plus years, rivaling or exceeding the long-time role of Syria.  Previous US presidents have dealt realistically with crises in Lebanon, in the sense that they have understood this truth: politics in Lebanon are never taking place in a quiescent, honest atmosphere uninfluenced by armed factions and intimidation.  To achieve any semblance of a democratic, constitutional, or consensual outcome in Lebanon today, there must be active pushback against the antidemocratic, unconstitutional, and counter-consensual methods of Hezbollah.

This is why nations like the US, France, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan have sought to actively counter Hezbollah’s influence during crisis periods in Lebanon.  Far from being meddlesome, such intervention – with diplomacy, aid, and support to Western-oriented “unity” governments – is the only way to ensure some kind of power balance in Lebanon.  The US has no interest in regime-changing or managing Lebanon, but we don’t want others doing that either – or at least, we haven’t up until now.

It’s quite true that over time, our handling of Lebanon has, for the most part, been pragmatic and narrowly conceived.  The US has never proposed a grand plan for reforming Lebanon, kicking Hezbollah out, and ensuring that peace and harmony reign in an idealized future.  We have always been in reactive mode:  always looking for compromise solutions, narrow guarantees, a steady strain on the tensions between power blocs.  We have accepted very imperfect situations there as the best we could get.

But we have always been engaged.  We have always conveyed that we have a strategic interest in the outcome.  We have proclaimed what we would not tolerate, and backed our rhetoric up with material support and occasionally the threat of force.  Sometimes we’ve put ourselves in an untenable position by paying insufficient attention to the link between force and security – but our determined presence, even when we get a black eye, has perennially been the limiting factor on everyone else’s plans and plots.

That engagement is what’s missing in January 2011.  The biggest thing that has happened this month is that a terrorist organization took over Lebanon, and we did nothing about it.  Not only did we do nothing, one of our national spokesmen actually referred to Hezbollah’s effective coup as a “constitutional process,” with the implication that as long as the process is “constitutional,” we don’t care who takes over what nation anywhere on earth.

Lebanon differs from Tunisia and Egypt in that Hezbollah has been organized and armed for a long time, and it forced dissolution of the Saad Hariri government in order to take over the country.  Whoever may end up exploiting the unrest in Tunisia and Egypt, the riots and frustration there are the result of genuine popular grievances.  From all appearances, they began spontaneously and are not centrally directed – even if they will ultimately be exploited – by groups plotting to form new governments.  There is ample excuse for everyone in foreign capitals, including ours, to be caught flat-footed by the unrest, at least for a while.

But there is no excuse for our failure to engage in Lebanon.  The effects of this policy failure will be far-reaching; we may well see them in the still-uncertain outcomes in Egypt and other parts of the Arab world.  There is a real sense in which the turning point of January 2011 is principally about us, and what we have not done.  The Hezbollah coup in Lebanon functioned as a test of what the US reaction would be, and unless something changes in the coming days, the answer is now obvious.

We could have acted as a limiting factor in Lebanon this month by engaging with the diplomatic process – the ad hoc negotiations among the factions in Lebanon – spearheaded by the Saudis.  It’s probable that the act of doing that would have signaled to Hezbollah that the timing was still inauspicious for attempting a takeover.  But we didn’t make even that effort.  I’m not sure American readers fully understand that we simply weren’t there. Hezbollah is playing it safe for the time being with a non-radical candidate for prime minister, a move that seems to be a nod to the expectations that prevailed in the status quo we are leaving behind.  But in the coming days, we can expect Hezbollah to maneuver as much for the impression on regional rivals like Saudi Arabia and Turkey as for Western governments and the Western press.

There is no friendly stasis, with momentum of its own, in geopolitical conditions.  Maintaining a beneficial status quo is hard work.  It can’t be left to tend itself – and if you’re not transforming and resetting it to your benefit, it’s being transformed to someone else’s.  For the last six decades, the posture of the US, whether heroic or flawed, has been the limiting factor on what challengers of the status quo consider possible.  Our disengagement and effective absence from Lebanon this month were a signal that big challenges are now possible; the US might not even try to intervene.  Whatever our latent powers, we are not acting as a limiting factor, by defining and defending interests, and we have no apparent intention to.

This understanding is what’s missing from most coverage of the unrest in the Arab world.  Riots in Egypt are not unprecedented; Mubarak has survived them before.  He may again, for now.  It may take time for newly-encouraged challengers of the status quo, like the Muslim Brotherhood, to develop actionable plans targeting specific governments.  That hasn’t been their primary focus, unlike the always-prepared Marxist insurgents of the last century.

But riots in Egypt after Hezbollah has taken over Lebanon in a coup while the US did nothing – that is a set of conditions that means the world has already changed.  The West doesn’t realize it yet; its media continue to assess events as if everyone is operating from a common set of assumptions about global power relationships.  That will probably keep us stumped, for a while longer, about what’s happening.  But as the hours tick by, the reality is settling in: we are not in the post-Cold War stasis any more.

J.E. Dyer blogs at The Green Room, Commentary’s “contentions” and as The Optimistic Conservative.  She writes a weekly column for Patheos.

This post was promoted from GreenRoom to HotAir.com.
To see the comments on the original post, look here.


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Comment pages: 1 2

Bridgette Gabriel on Egypt and Mubarak
The Right Scoop
on Jan 30, 2011

Bridgette Gabriel seems to be more on the side of Walid Shoebat in that supporting regime change could lead to an Islamic revolution. She believes that the Muslim Brotherhood has people on the ground actively recruiting and that Mubarak’s main concern at this point is cutting them off as much as possible. She believes there is a chance that he can stay in power but she does add though that it is simply too volatile at this point to predict an outcome.
===============

http://www.therightscoop.com/bridgette-gabriel-on-egypt-and-mubarak

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:17 PM

This interesting feature is the fact that, in the current Arab turmoil, the U.S. has done nothing
=========================================

And right from the Muslim Brotherhoods website,America…..
.dam*ed if you do….dam*ed if you don’t!!
==========================================

00:43

MB condemns the UN and Western silence about massacres committed against Egyptian civilians (New)

http://www.ikhwanweb.com/links.php
***************************************

So,the US of A is minding their own business,and now Hopey has a *MASSACRE* on his hands!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:22 PM

This interesting feature is the fact that, in the current Arab turmoil, the U.S. POTUS/TOTUS has done nothing

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:22 PM

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:27 PM

The biggest thing that has happened this month is that a terrorist organization took over Lebanon, and we did nothing about it.

Just some more of that “Smart Diplomacy” that has the world eating out of Barry’s hand, ’cause they love him so.

GarandFan on January 30, 2011 at 6:29 PM

Is it 1939 and the Hezbollah/Muslim Brotherhood are liken to the Nazis at this point… and Chamberlain is in charge of the U.S.A .

wheels on January 30, 2011 at 6:32 PM

When to do we overturn Obamacare?

Stop worrying about overseas issue over which we have no control.

We’re broke and if the Republicans wish to advance their agenda, they need to go on the offense and stop being distracted by the internal affairs of others.

rickyricardo on January 30, 2011 at 6:32 PM

But riots in Egypt after The party of allahHezbollah has taken over Lebanon in a coup while the US did nothing…

Lets start using the English translation. Too many people do do not know that Hezbollah means Party of allaha.

dentalque on January 30, 2011 at 6:35 PM

So,where is all the angst and hand wringing from
Liberals when they were so boisterous of the
rioting and looting in the first weeks of Operation
Iraqi Freedom,and the screaming and finger pointing
at Bush and Rumsfeld!!

Didn’t Democrats have a coniption fits that more troops
were needed,better planning…blah..blah..etc!!

Jus sayin!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Iraqis Watch Egypt Unrest With Sense Of IronyAnalysts, Iraqis:

Civilians War-Weary Iraq Not Expected To Riot
UPDATED: 9:50 am MST January 30, 2011
————————————-

BAGHDAD — Iraqis who have long suffered from high unemployment, poverty and endemic corruption – the catalysts of unrest spreading in the Arab world – called on their own government to take notice.

Many watched footage of riots and looting on the streets of Egypt, the region’s traditional powerhouse, with a sense of irony. The scenes brought back disturbing memories of similar mayhem in Iraq, but also admiration for an uprising that came from the streets rather than in the wake of a foreign invasion.

http://www.localnews8.com/news/26665733/detail.html

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Obama will go down in history as the president who lost Egypt just as Carter will always be rememberd as the president who lost Iran. Hard to believe that incompetence could hurt two countries this horribly without being planned on a much larger scale. Incompetence and cowardice can only be blamed for so much When you have communists like Frances Fox Piven calling for public insurrection in our country and the communist party supporting the democrats openly, thing are amiss.

volsense on January 30, 2011 at 6:40 PM

This interesting feature is the fact that, in the current Arab turmoil, the U.S. POTUS/TOTUS has done nothing

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:22 PM
============
OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:27 PM

OmahaConservative:CanOp *approved rewrite!!:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Carter 2, just like we said, but worse.

Kissmygrits on January 30, 2011 at 6:44 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:40 PM

God Bless ya’ my brother.
*YOU* are more American than roughly half my US brethren.

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:45 PM

So….um..I guess…ah,if Muslim Brotherhood gets in,

ah..um…that..means..ah..Egyptian Airspace might not
be okay’d for Israels Fly-over to Ka-Blewy Iranian tar
gets!!

Or,would that be a,Serendipity Collateral Damage,so to
ah….speak for denying the Israels!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:45 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:40 PM
==================
God Bless ya’ my brother.
*YOU* are more American than roughly half my US brethren.

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:45 PM

OmahaConservative:Your too kind,I say bomb first,talk later,
haha,ahem:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:47 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Lolz.
agreed

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:48 PM

rickyricardo on January 30, 2011 at 6:32 PM

If Egypt goes all ‘Islamic Republic’ the negative ramifications will be felt world-wide.

Please get your head out of the sand.

annoyinglittletwerp on January 30, 2011 at 6:56 PM

It would have been a shock to me if BHO had done anything.This is right up his playbook.Those people don’t know anything about freedom.After 6,000 years over half the population cannot read.The top source of revenue is tourism.Who will be going there now?I’ve been to the pyrimids(one of the 7 wonders) and it smells like 6,000 years of camel p!&&.The place is hopeless now and will be a Taliban/Iran like waste.

docflash on January 30, 2011 at 7:02 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:17 PM

You’re on fire today! :-)

Keemo on January 30, 2011 at 7:05 PM

If Obama can’t rally for a Sputnik moment, allow one to create itself.
Can you say Green?

Electrongod on January 30, 2011 at 7:10 PM

The dynamic that blows my mind is that elements of the MB came to DC and met with top officials of the Obama administration just a few weeks ago. This is just too much of a coincidence. This situation wreaks and there is a trail back to the WH.

Keemo on January 30, 2011 at 7:10 PM

And, what if the USA did get involved – on the side of Hezbollah and Syria? It’s not as if we would be told.

OldEnglish on January 30, 2011 at 7:10 PM

The biggest thing that has happened this month is that a terrorist organization took over Lebanon, and we did nothing about it.

Um, hello? Obama was present. Er… Well, some of his staff had a meeting about it and he had important family business to attend to…

Fallon on January 30, 2011 at 7:12 PM

This interesting feature is the fact that, in the current Arab turmoil, the U.S. POTUS/TOTUS has done nothing

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:22 PM

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:27PM

Oh, no boys. President WTF was busy yesterday. His daughter’s basketball game during the day and partying Sat. night. Here, from Gateway Pundit:

On Saturday, Obama spent the morning watching his daughter play basketball. Then on Saturday night he went out and partied with David Axelrod.

Kristinn reported this:

As thirty years of United States Middle East strategy teeters on collapse, Barack Obama spent Saturday night at a going away party for David Axelrod who is leaving the administration to set up Obama’s reelection campaign in Chicago. The party was held at the Dupont Circle condo of former Obama aide Linda Douglass.

Douglass, who is now with the National Journal, played host to a gathering of cabinet secretaries including Arne Duncan (Education), Timothy Geithner (Treasury) and Steven Chu (Energy) and prominent reporters including Major Garrett (National Journal), Jake Tapper (ABC), Chuck Todd (NBC) and John Harwood (CNBC/New York Times).

Obama spent nearly two hours at the party.

Greta Van Sustern appears to be the only one in the media to report on Obama’s party with her colleagues. Were it not for her posting the pool reports by the National Journal’s Rebecca Kaplan at Fox News’ GretaWire, the public would not know that Obama spent Saturday night partying with the media while Egypt burns.

tigerlily on January 30, 2011 at 7:13 PM

And, deja vu.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Obama Overtures to Muslim Brotherhood Recall Carter’s Craven Outreach to Ayatollah Khomeini

Fallon on January 30, 2011 at 7:19 PM

OmahaConservative:Your too kind,I say bomb first,talk later,
haha,ahem:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Mama worked at Creighton during the turbulent sixties.
She was told shoot first,ask questions later by black grandmas.

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 7:20 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:17 PM

You’re on fire today! :-)

Keemo on January 30, 2011 at 7:05 PM

Keemo: Thanks,I’ll put it to music!

Roll’n….Roll’n….Rawhide:)
========================================================

Frankie Laine – Rawhide (Original Stereo)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ndInEV3CS4

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 7:36 PM

How can we “kick hezbollah out” if they keep getting popularly elected? Either democracy is a core value or it isnt; which is it for you? Choose wisely, though…should you consider self-determination to be contingent on other factors, maybe you ought not to have that right…

ernesto on January 30, 2011 at 7:36 PM

How can we “kick hezbollah out” if they keep getting popularly elected?

ernesto on January 30, 2011 at 7:36 PM

ernesto:Ya know,I think Obama was elected the same way,
execpt the Brown shirters,crap,sorry,I mean’t to
say,the Union Purple Shirted Goons and Purple Blo
use GoonEttes,weren’t packing heat,like Hezbollah
Goons were,to alter the vote,er,I mean CHANGE the
vote!(sarc).

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 7:43 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 6:22 PM

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 6:27PM
=============
Oh, no boys. President WTF was busy yesterday. His daughter’s basketball game during the day and partying Sat. night. Here, from Gateway Pundit:

tigerlily on January 30, 2011 at 7:13 PM

tigerlily:Yup,just like Afghanistan,and Israel,and now
Egypt,ignore it and let it collapse on its own!:)
Thanks for the article,I’ve got Gateways blog,
saved on me files!!:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 7:47 PM

justice is the core value. electing an unjust regime that uses murder and terrorism doesn’t legitimize the regime or the choice of following it.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:48 PM

Zero’s big screw-up was ignoring the uprising in Iran awhile back which could have been utilized to civilization’s advantage. Poor prez, he already had vacation plans at that critical moment and you know how difficult it is for him to reschedule Scare Force One when Mooch wants to live it on up… on the East Side… they finally got a piece of the pie.

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 7:51 PM

big screw-up was ignoring the uprising in Iran awhile back which could have been utilized to civilization’s advantage
viking01

yeah, that’s it. if only he had paid real close attention, the outcome would have been different and everything would have changed.

yeah.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:58 PM

when Mooch wants to live it on up… on the East Side… they finally got a piece of the pie.

viking01

and you wouldn’t be making idiot bigoted jokes. douche.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:59 PM

and you wouldn’t be making idiot bigoted jokes. douche.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:59 PM

You’re a strange boy playing a race card with such a weak hand… and I suspect George and Weezie would agree with me.

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:05 PM

Oh no, PBHO did plenty before the Lebanon situation ever manifested, he sent a clear message to the world when he publicly castigated Hondurans for following the letter of their own law in a peaceful manner.

Ever tinpot on Earth saw PBHO for the limp-wristed Reagan antithesis that he is, and plans were hatched everywhere, from Lebanon and China to Zimbabwe and North Africa.

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:10 PM

How can we “kick hezbollah out” if they keep getting popularly elected?

Define “elected”. Saddam Hussein was elected too, curiously enough it was usually in the 99% range and voters had to cast a ballot openly while a guy holding an AK looked over the shoulder.

But hey, he was “elected” by popular vote.

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:14 PM

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:14 PM

True. Stalin always won comfortably, too.

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:19 PM

Frankie Laine – Rawhide (Original Stereo)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ndInEV3CS4

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 7:36 PM

Please, please, please come to facebook! :)

ladyingray on January 30, 2011 at 8:20 PM

he sent a clear message to the world when he publicly castigated Hondurans for following the letter of their own law in a peaceful manner.

and I always thought that the Hondurans didn’t follow the letter of the law when they arrested the guy in the middle of the night and tossed him out of the country rather than trying him for his crimes and allowing him a defense against the charges.

but then again, I didn’t even notice that “castigation”.
I thought that the uS kept on saying that all parties must follow the law.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:22 PM

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:14 PM

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:19 PM

Hey! Don’t burst their widdle bubbles…

ladyingray on January 30, 2011 at 8:23 PM

That engagement is what’s missing

That’s what scares me like you can’t understand.

The car isn’t just in ditch, the ignition acts like its turned off.

The difference in a barbaric Islamic state and a representative democracy can literally be timed in seconds and the failure of imagination or maybe its purposeful omission for ideological agenda or maybe its just ignorant incompetence, I really don’t give a rats a$$ which it is, the result may well be the massive loss of decades of American efforts to give the hot spots of the world a chance for liberty or in the flicker of a blind eye how many millions of people are sentenced to generations more of what they’ve already experienced, only worse?

Hey its just the middle east, what could go wrong?

Speakup on January 30, 2011 at 8:27 PM

Friday, January 28, 2011

Michael Savage EXPLODES on Egypt riots (aired 1-28-11)
******************************************************

http://conservativeblogscentral.blogspot.com/2011/01/michael-savage-explodes-on-egypt-riots.html

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:30 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 7:36 PM
===============
Please, please, please come to facebook! :)

ladyingray on January 30, 2011 at 8:20 PM

ladyingray:When I’m ready,thanks tho:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:31 PM

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:22 PM

Sorry Chuck but Zelaya broke so many laws during his little escapade that the Honduran government literally had no precedent on how to proceed, so it was decided that the army would remove him and remove him they did by order of the Honduran Supreme Court. You know, the law.

Odd world the demorats live in, Zelaya becomes a hero and Mubarak is declared to not be a dictator. I miss Evil Dubay, don’t you?

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:33 PM

viking01
and you wouldn’t be making idiot bigoted jokes. douche.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:59 PM

audiculous: Just put President Bush,and First Lady,
Barbara Bush into your thinking,and presto,
that,should calm you down!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:35 PM

Bishop,

he broke the law. and the law was broken by sending into exile in the middle of the night.
the US reacted well to the situation.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:36 PM

And to think Iran hasn’t had to lift a finger….in any direction.

Rovin on January 30, 2011 at 8:37 PM

viking01
and you wouldn’t be making idiot bigoted jokes. douche.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:59 PM

audiculous: Just put President Bush,and First Lady,
Barbara Bush into your thinking,and presto,
that,should calm you down!!

canopfor

why is that? I felt pretty calm reading that stupid joke and calling out the author of it.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:38 PM

Ya know,I’m perplexed,as to why Hopey never offered
Egypt,US Military,as they are an ally,and its clear,
that this is a Jihadys OverThrow,

Hopey at least,should have a task Force,steam towards
Egypt,and offer US Air Power,and Marines!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:39 PM

justice is the core value. electing an unjust regime that uses murder and terrorism doesn’t legitimize the regime or the choice of following it.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 7:48 PM

How does this differ from electing an unjust regime that can’t prove it’s eligibility or any other bona fides?

Just askin’

Who is John Galt on January 30, 2011 at 8:39 PM

canopfor
================
why is that? I felt pretty calm reading that stupid joke and calling out the author of it.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:38 PM

audiculous:The key word,that set you off,was

*Mooch*!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:41 PM

Were it not for her posting the pool reports by the National Journal’s Rebecca Kaplan at Fox News’ GretaWire, the public would not know that Obama spent Saturday night partying with the media while Egypt burns.

tigerlily on January 30, 2011 at 7:13 PM

True to form the “Cousin Eddie” Presidente wouldn’t let the loss of a country and ally interrupt his partay!

His Sputnik moment is a vision of the US decline and surrender to his Muslim Brothers and he is well on his way to accomplishing that, while the US media and Repugnantcant Party fiddles Pinochio destroys our country!

dhunter on January 30, 2011 at 8:41 PM

that can’twon’t prove it’s eligibility or any other bona fides?

FIFM, my bad…

Who is John Galt on January 30, 2011 at 8:42 PM

why is that? I felt pretty calm reading that stupid joke and calling out the author of it.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:38 PM

Weak. The joke is in your hand. Pfffft.

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:43 PM

Hopey at least,should have a task Force,steam towards
Egypt,and offer US Air Power,and Marines!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:39 PM

Never fear he’s got an ace in the hole, Hillary!

dhunter on January 30, 2011 at 8:44 PM

Is the article calling Obama a dog?

That’s arf-ul!

profitsbeard on January 30, 2011 at 8:45 PM

And to think Iran hasn’t had to lift a finger….in any direction.

Rovin on January 30, 2011 at 8:37 PM

Rovin:Especially in the last three years!:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM

prove it’s eligibility or any other bona fides?

Then again, maybe they won’t because they can’t?

Who is John Galt on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM

audiculous:The key word,that set you off,was

*Mooch*!!

canopfor

no. don’t even get the meaning of that.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM

he broke the law. and the law was broken by sending into exile in the middle of the night.
the US reacted well to the situation.
audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:36 PM

Like I said, the Hondurans had no precedent on which to rely to deal with a man who was literally rewriting national law by the day. The Honduran Supreme Court, supported by the Honduran congress, ordered the army to remove Zelaya from office; you can’t get much clearer and orderly than that.

I appreciate you choosing this molehill as your latest mountain development project, but it’s hardly a good support to explain why the PBHO administration considers Mubarak to be such a great guy. Or is he really not a dictator?

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:47 PM

Deja-Vu Baby!
==================

9/11 Commission chair: Obama, DHS, DNI too complacent on nat’l security
******************

Lee Hamilton, the Democratic co-chair of the 9/11 Commission, blasted the Obama administration as “too complacent” on counterterrorism

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/01/07/911-commission-chair-obama-dhs-dni-too-complacent-on-natl-security/

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:47 PM

When to do we overturn Obamacare?

Stop worrying about overseas issue over which we have no control.

We’re broke and if the Republicans wish to advance their agenda, they need to go on the offense and stop being distracted by the internal affairs of others.

rickyricardo on January 30, 2011 at 6:32 PM

Both issues go hand in glove in their importance for the future security of the US and the West.

We need less naive comments like this and more serious prayer that we can walk and chew gum at the same time.

Saltysam on January 30, 2011 at 8:48 PM

The joke is in your hand. Pfffft.

viking01

move on to something more worthwhile.

if you want to continue to argue, let’s do it over something else.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:49 PM

The sad fact of the situation is as a result of Hopey, Dopeys inaction a lot more people are gonna end up getting killed when the US has to defend itself and it’s European allys against a bunch of emblodened allah akbars!

dhunter on January 30, 2011 at 8:49 PM

tigerlily on January 30, 2011 at 7:13 PM

Ooooooooo….just went back to read that. Another fine example of “If Dubya had done it…..”.

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 8:51 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:39 PM
=============
Never fear he’s got an ace in the hole, Hillary!

dhunter on January 30, 2011 at 8:44 PM

dhunter:True dat,the 3:00AM phone call,already left the
barn,a few days ago!:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:51 PM

*Mooch*!!

canopfor

no. don’t even get the meaning of that.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Wesley Mooch? Atlas Shrugged?

Just a guess from “Who Is John Galt”.

Who is John Galt on January 30, 2011 at 8:52 PM

Is the article calling Obama a dog?

That’s arf-ul!

profitsbeard on January 30, 2011 at 8:45 PM

Westminster Kennel Club is howling about it already.

(FWIW The quotation derives from the solution by Sherlock Holmes in “Silver Blaze.”)

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:53 PM

no. don’t even get the meaning of that.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM

There is your problem.

katy the mean old lady on January 30, 2011 at 8:55 PM

Is Chris Mathews extolling the virtuous calmness of the Chitown Jesus as the world burns and Americas enemies consolidate power, yet?

Does Krauthammer and Rove think the Messiah has a purty mouth re foreign policy?

dhunter on January 30, 2011 at 8:55 PM

appreciate you choosing this molehill as your latest mountain development project, but it’s hardly a good support to explain why the PBHO administration considers Mubarak to be such a great guy. Or is he really not a dictator?

Bishop

you brought it up, Bishop. happy to let go of it if you are.

If you have a great idea of exactly what we should now be saying or doing or think about in relation to Egypt, love to hear it.
As far as our Mubarak, what’s there to say other than we were doing business with him because he acted relatively good to us while he was screwing around in his country and planning to never let go of control?

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:55 PM

I’m a tad confused……….

I thought,Progressive Smart Power was always a few
steps ahead,of Team Right’s so-called “Cow Boying”
in the Middle East!

How did thise escape the Liberal ArmChair Generals
and Monday morning quarterbacks,

of,we wouldn’ve/should’ve/Could’ve!!!!

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 8:55 PM

Who is John Galt

thanks for the info.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:57 PM

*Mooch*!!

canopfor

no. don’t even get the meaning of that.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Why should anyone bother argue with you at all when the meaning of so much eludes you?

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:58 PM

Lets start using the English translation. Too many people do do not know that Hezbollah means Party of allaha.

dentalque on January 30, 2011 at 6:35 PM

And while we’re at it lets spell it correctly, Hiz’b Allah, translated “Party of God”

royzer on January 30, 2011 at 9:00 PM

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:46 PM
=======
Why should anyone bother argue with you at all when the meaning of so much eludes you?

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:58 PM

viking01:And bad words(*douche*)too,jus try’n to help!:)

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 9:02 PM

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:55 PM

There goes the Rockies II development, and here I was looking forward to some good skiing.

The question is whether Mubarak is a dictator or not, VP Biden says “not”. What do you think, is Biden full of shiite or is he right?

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 9:04 PM

This President is NO FRIEND OF ISRAEL.

PappyD61 on January 30, 2011 at 9:10 PM

It’s 2020……Let’s look back at the Era of Obama……..

……..when millions of souls were lost to tyranny and nations by the score slipped back into darkness.

PappyD61 on January 30, 2011 at 9:13 PM

canopfor on January 30, 2011 at 9:02 PM

Thanks. What really got me laughing about his silly “bigot” claim was his overlooking (more likely his simply not knowing) how The Jeffersons was as much about cultures and pretense colliding as about race. Florence (the maid) always seemed to be the most stable one.

Poor Bentley. The Brits never protested angrily as victims over how he was portrayed! “I say Mr. J.” “Not now, Bentley.”

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 9:15 PM

The question is whether Mubarak is a dictator or not, VP Biden says “not”. What do you think, is Biden full of shiite or is he right?

Bishop

can’t be sure until I hear from Bachmann.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:17 PM

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 8:55 PM

Barackaliocious!

OmahaConservative on January 30, 2011 at 9:19 PM

Westminster Kennel Club is howling about it already.

(FWIW The quotation derives from the solution by Sherlock Holmes in “Silver Blaze.”)

viking01 on January 30, 2011 at 8:53 PM

Obama Baskerville would likely think it was personal, not literary arcana (which I “got”, being a fan of the violin-playing coke hound… and no, Obama doesn’t play the fiddle.)

A nice early novel in the locked room genre is “The Four Just Men” by Edgar Wallace (who later wrote the screenplay for the 1932 “Hound of the Baskervilles” and KING KONG).

profitsbeard on January 30, 2011 at 9:27 PM

can’t be sure until I hear from Bachmann.
audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:17 PM

Simple question, is the VPOTUS who is 2nd in line behind PBHO, correct when he says Mubarak is not a dictator?

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 9:30 PM

Simple question, is the VPOTUS who is 2nd in line behind PBHO, correct when he says Mubarak is not a dictator?

and I thought he was first in line behind Obama.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:35 PM

and yes, he was correct.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:37 PM

and I thought he was first in line behind Obama.
audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:35 PM

2nd in line of succession. You should have the good grace to show your badge when you play Language Police.

Mubarak, who has held power for three decades, banned political parties, jailed opponents, censored the press, groomed his son for dynastic succession and unilaterally dissolved and appointed governments…is NOT a dictator?

Huh.

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 9:46 PM

Mubarak, who has held power for three decades, banned political parties, jailed opponents, censored the press, groomed his son for dynastic succession and unilaterally dissolved and appointed governments…is NOT a dictator?

Huh.

Bishop

just a wannabe.

there have got to be more than a dozen regimes more dictatorial in Africa and the ME.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:52 PM

Soldier Carried On Shoulders Of Egyptian Protesters

Nearly Nobody on January 30, 2011 at 10:00 PM

there have got to be more than a dozen regimes more dictatorial in Africa and the ME.
audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 9:52 PM

Refreshing take on it, I will admit. Or in other words: Wait, what?

“More dictatorial”? Uhh…wouldn’t that simply be a measure of their relative dictatorial proclivities?

Was Stalin less of a dictator than Mao because Stalin didn’t kill as many Russians as Mao did Chinese?

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 10:04 PM

Was Stalin less of a dictator than Mao because Stalin didn’t kill as many Russians as Mao did Chinese?

Bishop

no.

dictatorship isn’t measured in body count, but rather in degree of control of governmental power.

try comparing Mubarak’s power with that of the Saudi king or that of Qaddafi.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 10:08 PM

Mubarak, who has held power for three decades, banned political parties, jailed opponents, censored the press, groomed his son for dynastic succession and unilaterally dissolved and appointed governments.

Mugabe did this. Dictator.
Hussein did this. Dictator
Assad did this. Dictator.
Qaddafi did this. Dictator.
Kim did this. Dictator.

What is the cutoff point between being a dictator and not being one?

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 10:18 PM

What is the cutoff point between being a dictator and not being one?

Bishop

I’m guessing that Mubarak has just about reached that point.

Jokes aside, the cutoff point isn’t exact, but when there’s another locus of governmental power that the putative dictator doesn’t control and which must be taken into account to the extent that there is an effective check on the dictator, then we’ve reached the general area of the line.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 10:28 PM

Effective check, huh?

In a late-night TV address, Mubarak refused to relinquish power, but dismissed his government, promising a new administration to tackle unemployment and promote democracy.

Arbitrarily dismissing the entire government besides himself and promising he will “appoint” a new one? If that’s considered effective, I’d hate to see the ineffective version.

Stand up, Joe, stand up.

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 10:33 PM

Lets start using the English translation. Too many people do do not know that Hezbollah means Party of allaha.

dentalque on January 30, 2011 at 6:35 PM

And while we’re at it lets spell it correctly, Hiz’b Allah, translated “Party of God”

royzer on January 30, 2011 at 9:00 PM

I think that’s rather common knowledge, but I prefer “A-holes with Guns”.

slickwillie2001 on January 30, 2011 at 10:35 PM

You can just admit that Biden royally effed the pooch with his remark, it isn’t as if he hasn’t tripped over his own tongue countless times before.

Bishop on January 30, 2011 at 10:35 PM

Arbitrarily dismissing the entire government besides himself and promising he will “appoint” a new one? If that’s considered effective, I’d hate to see the ineffective version.

Stand up, Joe, stand up.

Bishop

Mubarak can say whatever he likes. The Egyptian military will decide. A very effective check.

audiculous on January 30, 2011 at 10:36 PM

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