Saturday, October 30, 2010

Beijing's Humpty Dumpty Definitions of "Chinese"

     From Alice in Wonderland, you may recall the conversation between Alice and Humpty Dumpty:
     "When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean, neither more nor less."
     "The question is," said Alice, 'whether you can make words mean so many different things."
     "The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master—that's all."
     That seems to be Beijing's way of telling who is Chinese and who isn't, or what is a language and what is a dialect.
     At the core of all of this Humpty Dumpty stuff is the myth of China's "peaceful rise."  We hear that, in all of China's 4,000-year history, China has never invaded another country. If we believe that, we're supposed to conclude that China isn't going to start invading other countries now.
     Let's take a quick look at China's 4,000-year history to see what, exactly, is meant by "not invading another country."  China's first known dynasty was the Xia Dynasty, which ruled a small area along the Yellow River. They expanded over one of the world's largest land masses, not by consent but by conquest.
     They conquered people of other cultures and who spoke other languages. Of course, that doesn't mean that the Chinese conquered non-Chinese peoples. By the Humpty Dumpty definition of Chinese, these conquered peoples, once conquered, retroactively became Chinese, and so did their ancestors.
     These conquered peoples continued to speak their native languages, but their languages became known as Chinese dialects—not languages.
     You may have wondered what the difference between a language and a dialect is. In the linguistics course I took while studying for a Master of Education degree, I learned that the difference is political rather than linguistic. Quite flatly, a language has an army.
     To many people, Portuguese and Spanish are mutually intelligible. Hoklo (Taiwanese) and Mandarin (Chinese) are not.
     Centuries ago, the people of present-day Portugal and Spain used the word fermosa to mean "beauteous." Today, they use the words formosa and hermosa. They're very similar, aren't they? Likewise, the languages spoken by aborigines such as Taiwan's Rukai, Japan's Ryukyu, and New Zealand's Maori speak mutually intelligible languages. The governments of their respective countries have determined that they are separate languages.
     By contrast, Hoklo (Taiwanese) and Mandarin (Chinese) are said to be dialects of the same language.  I speak only a few words of Taiwanese, but let's compare a few.
     In Hoklo and Mandarin, respectively, "Have you eaten?” is translated, "Jia peng?" and "Ni chr guo le ma?" The words for "Bottoms up," for drinking are, "Ho da la," and "Gan bei." There is, however, some similarity in the words for, "Thank you;” they are, "Gam Sha,” and "Gan Hsieh." Taiwanese and Chinese are as different as English and German. That they're called the same language is a political decision backed by armies.
     Now that we've covered that point, let's get on to the question of who is Chinese and why.
     That, too, is a political decision. Chinese history (defined as a set of lies, agreed upon) tells us that the Great Wall of China was built to keep the hated foreigners—specifically, the Mongolians—out. Have you ever noticed that the Great Wall of China was built hundreds of miles south of the Chinese-Mongolian border?  Why is that?
     From 1644 until 1912, China was ruled by Mongolians known as the Ch'ing Dynasty or, alternately, the Manchu Dynasty.
     When Sun Yat-sen was raising funds to overthrow the Ch'ing Dynasty, one of his biggest selling points was the need to overthrow China's "foreign" rulers. Once the Ch'ing Dynasty was overthrown, the Mongolians retroactively became Chinese. In fact, the first flag of the Republic of China was a barred, five-color banner: one color for each of the ethnic groups ("five races," as Dr. Sun called them) of China.
     I hear ad nauseum that Taiwanese are Chinese because they're descended from the Han people of China. That rationale has several major problems.
     For one, Koreans and Japanese are of the same racial stock as the Han Chinese, and they are three separate nations. China, Japan, and—until fairly recently—Korea used the same writing system, though with some differences.
     The Chinese word for Korea is Han Guo (韓國), which is the same name as one of the Chinese kingdoms during the Warring States Period. The Korean surname Han and the word for Han (Chinese) are the same: 漢, though the surname may also be written as 韓. The Japanese written character for an administrative division is the same: 漢. From these examples, you can easily see the close ethnic connections, and formerly close political connections, among China, Japan, and Korea.
     A study of how these three Han peoples became three separate nations should give us a warning as to Beijing's intentions for them.
     Korea was once controlled by China. One of the conditions of China's defeat in the Sino-Japanese War (1894-95) was the independence of Korea. In 1910 Japan annexed Korea and didn't let go until after World War II. Traditionally, Chinese regimes have looked upon the Japanese as "Pygmies." That is to say, they've seen them as undeserving upstarts who must be kept in their place.
     The people of Tibet and East Turkestan (the Uyghurs of so-called Xingjian Province) are not of Sino-Japanese ancestry; so how can Beijing claim them as Chinese?  Of course, the definition of Chinese must change to accommodate that state of affairs.
     Tibet and East Turkestan are said to be Chinese because, at one time in the distant past, both countries had been occupied by China. Any parcel of land that has ever fallen under Chinese control for even a minute is considered "an inseparable part of China."  On that ground, Beijing is now making noises about taking over parts of India.
     One may be forgiven for wondering what Beijing would say about the conquests of Genghis Khan, which extended all the way up to the eastern border of present-day Hungary. Genghis Khan was a Mongolian who had also conquered China. Was he retroactively Chinese, and does that make all his conquered territories "inseparable part[s] of China"?
     Hmmm, here's a thought: Southern Mongolia is considered Chinese, but northern Mongolia (on Russia's post-World War II insistence) is not.  No explanation is given for this contradiction.
     You knew I'd get around to Taiwan, didn't you? For most of Chinese history, China took no interest in Taiwan. For the first half of the 17th century, Taiwan was ruled by the Dutch.  China finally took an interest in Taiwan after Koxinga (国姓爷), a half-Chinese, half-Japanese pirate, kicked the Dutch out of Taiwan. He then used Taiwan as a base in an attempt to overthrow the other hated foreigners, the Manchu Dynasty.
     During the Ch'ing Dynasty (those hated foreigners, remember?), much of Taiwan came under Chinese rule. In 1886, Taiwan officially became part of China. In 1895, Taiwan was transferred to Japanese sovereignty. Thus, from the mists of antiquity until 1945, Taiwan was never under Han Chinese rule—ever—and it was never under Han Chinese sovereignty—ever.
     How can the word Chinese be stretched to include Taiwanese? Well, according to the Humpty Dumpty definition of Chinese, anyone of Han ancestry is Chinese and therefore subject to Beijing's rule. That is, except citizens of Singapore, San Francisco's Chinatown, Japan, Korea, and other places where it would be ludicrous to bring up that argument. (Of course, it would also be ludicrous to bring up that argument in Tibet, Inner Mongolia, and East Turkestan.)
     If this is true—apart from the two hundred million exceptions I've just mentioned—what about the English in Hong Kong and the 499,500 aborigines in Taiwan? Well, the English in Hong Kong, having been conquered, are now retroactively Chinese. Besides, they've conveniently been swept down a memory hole.
     Taiwan's aborigines are a bit more problematical. They're still relatively free—except when politically connected investors want to take their land and dump toxic wastes on it. Even if they're not treated as human, they're free to elect pampered, elitist politicians who claim to "see them as human.”
     After Chen Sui-bian, a native Taiwanese, was elected president of Taiwan in 2000, the butchers of Beijing had to face that very issue. Chiang Hui-mei (張惠妹), affectionately known as A-mei (阿妹), was invited to sing at Chen's inauguration. A-mei, the second most popular Chinese-language singer of the past 30 years or so (Teresa Teng (鄧麗君) was the most popular), is an ethnic Puyuma—one of Taiwan's fourteen recognized aboriginal groups.
     Her presence at the inauguration of a Taiwanese president who refused to toe Beijing's line came as a shock to the butchers of Beijing. It was a living reminder that Beijing's ethnic argument for Taiwan had 499,500 holes in it. For two years after A-mei sang at President Chen's inauguration, Beijing banned her from entering China.
     "Reclaiming" Taiwan, as if Taiwan were ever ruled by the so-called People's Republic of China (the butchers of Beijing) is often called "a sacred mission." How can professed atheists speak of a sacred mission?
     In all of these shaky and shifting rationales for defining unwilling people as Chinese, one thing is missing: the consent of the governed. For the butchers of Beijing, the Humpty Dumpty "authority" to define Chinese doesn't come from any dictionary; it comes from the barrel of a gun.

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Problem with End-of-the-world Scenarios

     By now, I’m sure you’ve heard that the world will end on December 20, 2012. Being the calm, rational person that you are, I’m sure you don’t believe it. Ask yourself, though, “Do I fully disbelieve it?” Do the people around you fully disbelieve it?
     Many years ago, a friend told me that you can get almost anyone to believe almost anything as long as you tell him, “Science has found a way.” Let’s test that theory for a moment, shall we?
     The gestation period for an elephant is two years. Let’s assume that two years was the gestation period for the now-extinct woolly mammoth. Now, we know that frozen mammoths have been found containing fully intact DNA.
     Now, let’s suppose that scientists (there’s that word science again) attempted to clone a woolly mammoth from tissue they had in hand; and let’s further suppose that everything went smoothly and according to plan. Could they clone a woolly mammoth in less than three years?
     That’s good. You hedged a little with your answer. You said, “Probably,” or “Possibly.”
     Actually, the correct answer is, “No.” The DNA would have to be inserted into living cells. Since there are no living woolly mammoth cells, the mammoth DNA would have to be inserted into elephant cells, and the result would be a hybrid species. They would need around five generations of cloning before the product could no longer be called a hybrid.
     You may have already known that, but the highly convincing pseudo-science of Jurassic Park has conditioned you to accept it as fact anyway.
     When you first heard of the movie 2012, you probably rejected its doomsday scenario out of hand. Since then, however, scientists (there goes that word again) have been telling us of several extinction-level possibilities.
     There’s a giant asteroid headed this way. If it even comes close to hitting us, the movie scenario can play out. If it hits us straight on, we won’t even have time to say, “Good night, Gracie.”
     There’s also the prospect of a solar storm that can seriously affect us here on Earth, especially those of us who depend on computers. You probably own dozens of computers on which you depend in your daily lives. In addition to your laptop, computers run your wrist watch, your television set, your microwave oven, the carburetor and other devices in your car, and many other devices.
     If that happens, major national economies will collapse. The semi-nomadic Himbas in Africa will get along as they’ve gotten along for thousands of years. Members of neighboring tribes, who now laugh at the Himbas for their “backward ways,” will be freaking out.
     Events of that sort will certainly happen someday, but almost certainly not in our lifetimes. What about an invasion from outer space—you know: like the one in the movie Independence Day? In that movie, one rumpled-looking nerd with a laptop took on one of the most technologically advanced species in the universe. The nerd’s former rival then united all the world’s peoples under a one-world government, whipped the snot out of those galoots and sent them scurrying back to hyperspace.
     The concept is so ridiculous that MacIntosh used it in a commercial.  (Here)  (At the 31-second mark, see how much time he has left before the attack from aliens: 9 minutes and 11 seconds.)
     Can you believe it? Oh, well, maybe not now, but can you be sure that you can never be conditioned to believe it—the way you were conditioned to believe unlikely things about cloning?
     A few months ago, during the Halliburton/BP oil spill, the companies that caused the spill locked down the entire Gulf area and took control of all spill-related information coming from the Gulf. We were constantly bombarded with information (or disinformation) that hinted at an extinction-level event; and that all our lives were saved by Halliburton and BP—the people who were managing the “news.” How many Americans actually questioned this highly filtered news?  Not very many. Most people considered it news, as credible as news from any other source.
     This event proved how easy it would be to override the First Amendment and fool tens of millions of people into thinking that the U.S. Congress needed to pass cap-and-trade legislation. Who is heavily invested in companies that would benefit from cap-and-trade legislation? BP, that’s who.
     Now, can you be sure that you, or others around you, can’t be tricked into believing that we’re being invaded from outer space? Being so tricked, can you be sure that neither you, nor those around you, will demand that our Constitution be abolished in favor of a world government that may turn out to be totalitarian?
     It sounds pretty far fetched, I know. It’s as far fetched as believing that Saddam Hussein had anything to do with 9/11, or that Gulf War Syndrome doesn’t exist, or that Halliburton and BP were the heroes of the oil spill and not the villains, or a host of other things that people have been conditioned to believe.
     Please take a look at what a fellow named Bill Cooper has to say about a bogus invasion from outer space. (I ask you to consider that government was not Mr. Cooper’s forte. He speaks of a “one-world, totalitarian socialist government.” Under a totalitarian regime, libertarians and socialists are equally under threat. Mr. Cooper was unwittingly subscribing to a false paradigm—left versus right—that is used to keep us divided against one another.)
     I’m not saying that anyone would try to trick us into believing that such a doomsday scenario is for real. I am saying, though, that if we do hear of a space invasion, we should look behind the curtain and see who is pulling the strings.
     For further information, and to watch the You Tube video “Hoax Alien Invasion Planned—Bill Cooper,” click here.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Suspicious Timing: More evidence of Israeli prior knowledge and planning of 9/11

     The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) is an international organization that was organized to “support the war on terror.”  Its founders are some of the great movers and shakers in American and Israeli political circles.
     As an amateur historian, I’m obsessed with time lines. The war on terror was declared after September 11, 2001. The FDD was officially launched on September 13, 2001. How were they able to organize eleven heavy hitters and be ready to fulfill its grandiose purpose in less than two days?
     To answer that question, it’s necessary to go back four years to the formation of a nominally American organization—a much better-known organization which would later contribute leadership to the FDD.  It was founded in 1997, and it was called the Project for the New American Century.
     You probably remember them. Many of their founders, such as William Kristol, hold dual citizenship in the United States and Israel. They’re the guys who drew up a wish list in which they confessed that their wishes wouldn’t be granted unless the United States were struck by a “new Pearl Harbor” that would frighten the American people into acceding to the wishes of Kristol and his pals.
     I call it a wish list because any alternative label would be unacceptable to readers who are addicted to comfort. The alternative would be to call it a plan.
    Maybe you’ve heard the term opportunity cost. That’s the difference between what you gained from a given course of action and the greater gain you could have derived from doing something else.
     The highly influential people involved in the PNAC invested hundreds of thousands of man hours, tens of millions of dollars, and all that effort on an endeavor that they never expected to gain them anything—unless the United States experienced a new Pearl Harbor with characteristics that perfectly dovetailed with PNAC’s blueprint for the New World Order. Unless there was a close fit between PNAC’s blueprint and a made-to-order, new Pearl Harbor, the opportunity costs for each one of the participants would have been astronomical.
     Let’s move up to the spring of 2001.
     Sourcewatch cites The American Conservative as saying that the FDD was an outgrowth of the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET). EMET is an anti-Palestinian hate group founded  in the spring of 2001, and which foundered shortly thereafter. (Here)  Israel needed a more palatable means of presenting its ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in Gaza. (Here)
     Over the next few months, Israeli spinmeisters and Israeli/American dual-citizenship neoconservatives threw this and that into their witches brew. By late August, their organizational work on the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies was completed.
     Of the eleven men and women who were FDD’s founding leadership, five of them had been signers of the Project for the New American Century. They were Clifford D. May, Paula Dobriansky, Steve Forbes, Bill Kristol, and James Woolsey. Although Newt Gingrich had not been present for the signing of PNAC, he was yet another founding leader of the FDD. Other leadership positions in both PNAC and the FDD were held by Gary Bauer, Charles Krauthammer, Richard Perle, William Bennet, Rich Lowry, and Jeanne Kirkpatrick.
     It had been more than four years since these neocons had filled out their wish list, predicated entirely on a new Pearl Harbor that perfectly dovetailed with their blueprint. Now all they could do is sit back and wait for it to happen.
     At 11:30 P.M. on the night of September 11, 2001, President Bush wrote in his diary that the United States had been hit by “a twenty-first century Pearl Harbor.” Yes, that’s right: He used the same reference that PNAC had placed on its wish list four years earlier.
     Less than two days later, at least five signers of PNAC, now representing an Israeli propaganda organ, announced their intention to help the United States fight its “war on terror.”
     On September 20, 2001, President Bush would address the United States Congress in what would become known as his “War on Terror Speech.” You read it correctly. Bush’s “War on Terror Speech” was seven days after the FDD was launched to “support the war on terror.” The same people had used the term “Pearl Harbor” in the context of 9/11 more than four years earlier than Bush did. (Here)
     Granted, the war-on-terror rationale for launching FDD may have been a later add-on, but that would suggest that Israel and their dual-citizenship stooges had other reasons for launching the FDD. Thus, the rejection of one conspiracy theory would, itself, be a conspiracy theory. Either way, it leaves open some tricky questions such as, “If helping the United States fight the War on Terror wasn’t the real reason for starting the FDD, what was the real reason?”
     You could keep going around in circles with questions like that. It’s like the classic time-travel paradox.
     There is, however, one simple explanation for all of these mysteries—one that isn’t riddled with paradoxes. Both PNAC and the FDD were founded by people who knew that the terrorist attacks of 9/11 would happen. Both groups, as well as fractional lenders, the military-industrial complex, the disaster capitalists, and other Insiders, greatly benefited from 9/11.
     In the first article in this series of “motive, means, and opportunity,” I pointed out several ways that Israeli leaders benefited from 9/11 and even said that it was “a good thing for Israel.” (Here) In the second article of the series, I proved that Muslim “terrorists” did not have the means to have carried it out, although Israel, with the help of American Insiders, did.  (Here) In both articles, I offered abundant proof that the Israeli regime had prior knowledge of 9/11.
     In this article, I proved that the events of 9/11 perfectly dovetailed with plans that Israelis and Israeli dual-citizens had made years in advance of 9/11.  The odds against coincidence are astronomical.
     In the final article in this series, I’ll show how Israeli software and security companies—and no companies other than Israeli companies—had the opportunity to carry out 9/11.
Other September 11, 2001, articles in this blog

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Diaoyutais/Senkakus, Part 2

     (In Part 1, I described the islets called the Diaoyutais in Chinese and the Senkakus in Japanese. They sit astride one of the most important choke points on Earth. Whoever controls those islets controls much of the sea traffic passing through the East China Sea. Whose are they? Three nations—China, Japan, and Taiwan—claim them. In this part, we examine the relevant legal and political documents.)
     The Diaoyutais first appeared on Chinese maps in 1403 and were used as navigational reference points. Throughout the centuries, they appeared on Japanese maps—some claimed them to be Japanese; some claimed them to be Chinese. Chinese maps showed the same discrepancies. Japanese and Chinese political communications showed these discrepancies as well.
     For most of this history, aborigines of both the Ryukyu Islands (which included Okinawa) and Taiwan paid tribute to both China and Japan, though neither country formally claimed either area. The 1871 Mudan Incident made it clear to Japan that China could not claim all of Taiwan, let alone the Ryukyu Islands. In 1874, Japan claimed the Ryukyus and marked the Diaoyutais as a border between Japan and China.  (Click here.)
     In 1891, Japanese researchers determined that no nation had yet laid formal claim to the islands. In that year, Japan formally claimed the Daioyutais. Four years later, after the Sino-Japanese War, the Treaty of Shimonoseki granted Japan "the island of Formosa (Taiwan) together with all islands appertaining or belonging to said island of Formosa.”
     That should have been the end of it, except for the two court cases that arose in Japan in 1931 and 1944. The Formosa and Okinawa prefectures squabbled over who had jurisdiction over the Diaoyutais. In both cases, the Japanese High Court decreed that the Diaoyutais belonged to the Formosa prefecture.
     China’s present claim to the Diaoyutais rests on the assertion that the islands are part of Taiwan and that Taiwan (so the butchers of Beijing tell us) is part of China. Yet a third country, Taiwan, also claims the Diaoyutais for obvious reasons.
     The allies had intended to return Taiwan to China at the end of World War II, but the Chinese Civil War, the Korean War and the Cold War intervened. Under the terms of the Treaty of San Francisco in September 1951, Japan gave up all title to Taiwan and all islands pertaining thereto; but, due to the conflicts of the day, they didn’t pass the title to another country.
     In April 1952, when Japan signed the Treaty of Taipei, Chinese dictator Chiang Kai-shek insisted that the treaty specify the Republic of China as the recipient to the title of Taiwan. The Japanese said they couldn’t do that because, having already given up Taiwan, they had no right to give the title to anyone. You can’t give what you don’t have.
     On July 23, 1952, Taiwan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Kung Chao-yeh reported to the ROC Legislative Yuan, “[Taiwan and Penghu] do not belong to us….Japan has no right to transfer [Taiwan and Penghu] to us, nor can we accept such a transfer from Japan even if she so wishes.”  (Click here.)
     The Chinese Communist Party, in China and the Chinese Nationalist Party in Taiwan today, however, insist that Chiang Kai-shek’s occupation of Taiwan in October 1945, formalized the transfer of Taiwan to the Republic of China. Beijing claims that the Republic of China no longer exists and that the CCP is the real ruler of Taiwan. Under international law, though, sovereignty can be transferred only by treaty; so neither the PRC nor the ROC government can claim Taiwan—and, by extension, the Diaoyutais—on that basis alone.
     In 1947, Secretary of State Dean Acheson wrote that the transfer of Taiwan had “not yet been formalized.” The Treaty of San Francisco took the position that the disposition of Taiwan was “an unsettled question” and that Taiwan had “undetermined status.” According to Sheng vs. Rogers, on October 6, 1959, issued from the District of Columbia Circuit Court, Taiwan was never officially returned to China, and that Taiwan's status remained unsettled.  (Click here.) Thus, the PRC’s sole claim to the Diaoyutais/Senkakus has no legal foundation. The State Department reiterated this position on July 13, 1971. Every U.S. administration since then has said that the U.S. position on Taiwan’s status has remained unchanged. (Click here.)
     The Treaty of San Francisco should have meant that whoever had a lawful claim to Taiwan also had a lawful claim to the Diaoyutais. The trouble is, under the terms of the Treaty of San Francisco, the United States took possession of the Ryukyu Islands; and the U.S. treated the Diaoyutais as part of them. For some years, the U.S. Navy used the Diaoyutais for bombing and gunnery practice.
     The people of Okinawa weren’t treated much better at American hands. From 1951 until 1972, the United States government maintained a gut-wrenching dictatorship over the Ryukyu Islanders.
     In 1968, the United Nations reported that there may be large deposits of coal, natural gas, and other natural wealth under the sea bed surrounding the Diaoyutais. Even as recently as 1969, the People’s (sic) Republic (sic) of China (PRC) printed a classified map describing these islands as part of Japan. (Click here.)  In 1971, for the first time, Beijing and Taiwan formally asserted their claims to the islands.
     In 1972, the treaty returning the Ryukyu Islands to Japan geographically described the area that included the Diaoyutais as part of the Ryukyu Islands.  Whether this treaty supersedes the Japanese court rulings of 1931 and 1944, is open to debate.
     There the matter stands in all its complexity. Japan seems to have the strongest legal claim to the islands. Taiwan also has a legal claim to them, since two Japanese court decisions (1931 and 1944) ruled that the islands were part of the “Formosa Prefecture.” China has no legal claim to them whatsoever.
     Every so often, matters flare up and one side or the other threatens to go to war over those rocks. None of the three sides is prepared to yield to the others. Most recently, Beijing stirred up just enough Chinese anger to absorb some of the Chinese people’s anti-Beijing anger. Taiwan’s Quasi-president Ma Ying-jeou, like a terrier trying to please its master, sent twelve Coast Guard ships to the area to bark and snap at Japan’s heels. (Click here.)
     Napoleon is credited with saying, “Don’t ascribe malice to behavior that can as easily be explained by stupidity.” Stupid politicians can start a war. In the interest of preventing stupid politicians from miscalculating and starting a war that could drag the United States into it, both sides—Taiwan and Japan—should yield to international arbitration. China, which has no dog in this race, should stay out of it.


Monday, October 18, 2010

"Many Gifts, One Spirit"

     Not long ago, the Taipei International Church (TIC) Choir sang the Allen Pote hymn "Many Gifts, One Spirit." . It appears that the hymn means different things to different people.   
     During choir practice, one of the members of the choir told what it meant to her.  Her husband was dying of brain cancer, and she found in the hymn a source of strength.
     She had to be at the hospital on the day the choir sang "Many Gifts, One Spirit," but the sound and light crew of TIC recorded the hymn for her benefit.
     When they listened to it together, they found themselves in what the ancient Celts called a "thin place."  That's a place where the skein separating heaven and Earth is so thin that the beauty of our Merciful Heavenly Father shines through it.
     The husband has recently gone to be with our Lord.
video

    I saw other possibilities in the hymn.  I see it as a vision of harmony among the peoples of the world.  After all, we have One Creator, and He loves us all.  We all see Him only dimly, as through a clouded mirror; but one day we'll see Him face to face.  If the composer and copyright holder, Allen Pote, sees what I did to his work, I hope he doesn't mind.  I also hope that the members of the Taipei International Church appreciate it.

















"Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God’s great Judgment Seat."
                                                                         ~~Rudyard Kipling

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Pamela Geller: Ground Zero Harpy

     By now, all of y’all have heard of the mythical “Ground Zero Mosque” that’s just a figment of the Israeli Mossad’s imagination. Since “truth in labeling” is not part of the Mossad’s stock-in-trade, they couldn’t very well have started that propaganda campaign in their own names. No, they relied on the geriatric “bikini blogger” Pamela Geller to give their anti-Muslim propaganda an American face.
     By now, the public is as tired of hearing her rants about the non-existent Ground Zero Mosque” as they are of seeing her flabby wrinkles and unrealistically rounded boobs in a bikini.
     (In case you’re wondering what a bikini has to do with serious political discourse, it’s supposed to get the Muslims upset. She calls it her burqa. By contrast, the late Benazir Bhutto was far more alluring in her head scarf than this geriatric Paris Hilton knock-off with her too-oft-seen cleavage.  See below.)
     Now Geller has a new gimmick for cheap attention: repeating the worn-out saw that Barack Obama is a Muslim, which makes him dangerous for America. Presumably, it would tax her intelligence too much to give facts supporting her contention.
     Of the dozens of accusations Pamela Geller makes in her extended rant, she doesn’t provide even one link to support any of them. How can we believe her hackneyed assertion, clichéd to death, that Mr. Obama is a devout Muslim, when he has always given abundant proof that he has no commitment to any religion or principles? How can we believe that Mr. Obama’s sympathies lie with Muslims when he has packed his administration with 32 Israeli dual citizens?
     You may ask, just who is that harpy called Pamela Geller anyway?
The New York-based, award-winning Jewish Week, began their article on her by calling her a “right wing blogger.” They report that, when asked about the accuracy of her remarks, she scolded a reporter for defending the “bad guys” against the “good guys.”  (Here) Compared to the struggle between good and evil, it seems, accuracy shrinks into insignificance.
     According to The Guardian, (here) she’s an “extremist.” Among her many wild causes, she denies that Slobodan Milosevic had any concentration camps in Serbia.
     Oh, but you may say that the Jewish Week and the Guardian are just two observers. Her Wikipedia bio was written, edited, and re-edited many times by many sources, all of which—unlike Geller’s writings—are linked to reliable sources. (Grab your barf bag and click here.)
     She describes herself (Here) as being influenced by Ayn Rand, Bat Ye’or, and Ibn Warraq
     The latter two were tireless crusaders for anti-Islamic hatred.
     Ayn Rand described Israel’s war on its neighbors as “civilized men” fighting against “savages.” Rand also took the position that American whites had the right to take land from Native Americans. (Here) One can see how a person such as Rand or Geller can defend Israel’s ethnic cleansing of Palestine. 
     Geller’s Wiki-bio describes her as having written a few little-read articles and co-written a little-read book. So how does she make a living? Her Wiki-bio doesn’t say, but we may see a clue in the only photo the article provides:
     In the photo, Geller poses with a “former” head of Israeli military intelligence, Moshe Ya’alon, who has described Palestinians as a “virus” and a “cancer” that must be removed. In December 2005, Ya’alon was formally accused of war crimes in Gaza. He is currently serving as Israel’s Minister of Strategic Affairs.  (Click here.) 

     Does the Wikipedia photo of Ya’alon look familiar to you? It should. It was cropped from the photo of himself with Pamela Geller. 
    Wouldn’t you think that supporters of one of Israel’s top intelligence agents could come up with a photo of their own instead of cropping one from a fan from New York? Doesn’t that suggest a degree of closeness between those perps?
     Most people think that intelligence services spend most of their time gathering intelligence. They don’t. Most of their time is spent spreading disinformation. That fact puts a different spin on the relationship between a top Israeli intelligence agent and a prolific anti-Muslim American propagandist.
     On many occasions, including the King David Hotel bombing, the Lavon Affair, the attack on the USS Liberty, the Achille Lauro Affair, and 9/11, Israel has used false flag terrorist acts as part of their disinformation campaigns against the United States. This easily qualifies Israel as a hostile foreign power.
     Pamela Geller has lobbied before Congress. That being the case, Geller may be violating federal law by not registering as a foreign agent—and probably a disinformation agent on behalf of a hostile foreign power.
     When an American citizen actively promotes disinformation on behalf of a hostile foreign power, it’s an act of treason. When loyal but extremely gullible Americans spread Israeli disinformation, thinking it a patriotic act, you can imagine just how happy this makes the Mossad: as happy as the five dancing Israelis on September 11, 2001. 

More articles on the September 11, 2001 false flag attacks.

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Diaoyutais/Senkakus: Whose are They and Why Do They Matter?

      (This article is the first part of a two-part series.)

     The Diaoyutais, known in Japanese as the Senkakus, consist of a single island covering about 20 acres, and seven rocky outcroppings too small to be called islands. One can scarcely imagine China and Japan, Asia’s two largest powers, bothering with whose pile of rocks they are—until you look at a map and see where they are.
     The Diaoyutais are located in the East China Sea, astride one of the most heavily traveled sea lanes on Earth. Beijing is increasingly asserting its claim that the East China Sea is essentially a Chinese lake, as much as the Gulf of Peichili. Whoever controls the East China Sea controls one of the most important military and maritime choke points on Earth.
     Under maritime law, sovereignty over an inhabitable body of land includes an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) over the seas extending up to 200 miles from that body of land. If one country’s EEZ overlaps with another, they split the difference.
     If you assume that the Diaoyutais are Japanese, and that Taiwan is a sovereign nation, the line of demarcation between China’s and Japan’s EEZs would run more or less down the middle of the East China Sea. (See below.)
     On the other hand, let’s suppose that Beijing has sovereignty over both Taiwan and the Diaoyutais. The map would look more like the following:
     This would put Beijing almost completely in control of the southern sea lanes supporting South Korea’s economy and much of Japan’s. If bolstered by Beijing’s missile arsenal, Beijing could become an even greater threat to its neighbors.
     Beijing's arsenal of short-range and medium range missiles deployed against Taiwan has been conservatively estimated at 1,500. They also have more than 350 cruise missiles deployed against Taiwan. If Beijing were to succeed in its claims to Taiwan and the Diaoyutais, the missiles almost surely would be moved from China’s coastal provinces to the east coast of Taiwan and possibly to the Diaoyutai main island.
     Additionally, the fossil fuel and mineral wealth believed to be in the area could further fuel China’s geo-strategic ambitions.
     Who has sovereignty over Taiwan and who has sovereignty over the Diaoyutais are two separate issues, though they touch upon some of the same concerns. In some respects, the issues overlap.  In this article, we address the latter question and focus on the legal issues involved.
     It’s a complicated issue, and you never know what lawyers will decide when they get their heads together. Still, I’d like to give you some idea of what it will take to untie this Gordian knot.
First of all, they consist of only one island and seven islets. That even one of them is an island is significant because no EEZ can be claimed for islets, reefs, or anything else that is considered less than an island. The main island qualifies as an island in that it has an indigenous source of water and is habitable. At one time, 200 Japanese lived there.
     In the second part of this two-part series, I'll get into treaties and other important documents, and the legal, political, and historical issues.  Some will surprise even the readers who are familiar with the debate.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

ECFA: Formosa Betrayed to the Butchers of Beijing

(In my previous article about the new ECFA (Economic Cooperative Framework Agreement) between Taiwan and China—or, rather, the agreement between Quasi-President Ma and those gangsters who hold China hostage—I alluded to the birdcage referendum law and the farcical “debate” over whether it should pass. In the photo above, you see the show horse Ma Ying-jeou, who, appropriately, is on the left. Ma's debate opponent, the intellectual Tsai Ing-wen on the right side. Since television is primarily an entertainment medium, it's easy to tell which would win. If Ma's opponent had been the sexy and popular singer Chiang Hui-mei (A-mei) instead of the well-informed intellectual Tsai Ing-wen, the debate's outcome would have been different.)

If ECFA is all that important to Taiwan, why were negotiations secret? Why was the legislature arm-twisted into skipping a public reading of the agreement so its contents would not become known to the public until after it had passed? Why was a referendum not allowed? Why was there no public debate until public pressure had become so great that it couldn’t be denied?
Quasi-president Ma’s answers to all these questions was that it wasn’t necessary. Having won the presidential election with 58% of the vote, he had a mandate to do what he thought was best for Taiwan. I assure you, I didn’t make that one up either.
The Taipei Times begged to remind Ma that he didn’t receive a mandate to rule by fiat. He received a mandate to fulfill his campaign promises. Beyond that, his job was to represent the people rather than rule over them.
There finally was a series of debates. For opponents of ECFA, however, it was like taking a knife to a gunfight.
Ma doubles as chairman of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), and Tsai Ing-wen is the chairman of the opposing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP.) Ma understood that television debates aren’t about facts and reason; they’re about appearances and glibness. Ma took his movie star looks and glib tongue to the debate. Poor Tsai took her Zelda Gilroy looks and intellectuality to the debate. Even her gender worked against her.
Whenever Tsai tried to pressure Ma to directly answer a question, to back up his claims with facts, or when she questioned Ma’s reasoning, it worked against her. Ma came across as a courtly gentleman, and Tsai came across as a disrespectful egghead.
Even Tsai’s gender and marital status may have worked against her in the minds of some viewers. Who can forget the bone-headed legislator who once told her, “I don’t think we should listen to the opinions of a woman who has never been married.”
(In Taiwan, women in politics are judged by different standards than men. When Typhoon Marakot struck a year ago, Quasi-President Ma Ying-jeou waited three days to send help or even accept help from overseas, and people died as a result. When Typhoon Fanapi recently flooded the Kaohsiung area, Mayor Chen (a woman) acted immediately, from early morning until late in the evening; but, because she went home to change into some dry clothes and take a 20-minute nap during the afternoon, Chinese Nationalist Party legislators are demanding that she resign. Guess who else is condemning Mayor Chen for taking a 20-minute nap: Ma Ying-jeou, whose inaction during Typhoon Marakot got people killed—and nobody seems to notice the hypocrisy of it.)
The debate was a disaster. In the end, the debates taught the public little or nothing about the contents of ECFA, but it probably taught a lot of people that televised debates are more about style than substance.
Then there were the three separate efforts to force a referendum on ECFA. On legally dubious grounds, all three petitions were disapproved by the Referendum Committee. (That's the governmental committee set up to demonstrate that the government rules the people and not the other way around.)
It’s easy to see why the ruling Chinese Nationalist Party (the KMT) opposed a referendum on the issue. The referendum law is, as many call it, a “birdcage” law. The KMT was pressured into voting for it, lest they lose votes for appearing undemocratic. Before passing it, however, they crafted the law in such a way as to make sure that no referendum would ever pass.
Before a referendum would even be considered by the Referendum Committee, a petition for a referendum would have to be signed by at least .5% of Taiwan’s eligible voters in the previous presidential election. Then another petition would have to be signed by 5%. Then a government committee would have to approve the referendum. Then 50% of the eligible voters would have to vote for it.
The KMT attempted to place further obstacles to referendums. They attempted to bar referendums from taking place on the same day as elections, but that effort failed. They did, however, succeed in making sure that referendums would not be on the same ballot as the election of candidates. To vote in a referendum, voters must stand in another line and wait their turn.
If a referendum should go as far as the polls, opponents can easily defeat it by boycotting the vote. That’s why six out of six referendums have failed. One referendum was approved by 96% of the people who voted, but it still failed. It failed because fewer than 50% of all registered voters had voted on it.
If ECFA had been permitted to go through the process of referendum, it would have failed as surely as the others failed. It would fail because, under the birdcage law, referendums are designed to fail.
Do you remember the gaffe-prone Premier Wu Den-yih’s dimwitted remark about the butchers of Beijing letting Taiwan sign free trade agreements (FTA’s) with other countries “because they realize that FTA’s were important to Taiwan”? Even before ECFA passed the Chinese Nationalist Party-controlled legislature, the butchers of Beijing declared that they would use it to prevent Taiwan from signing FTA’s with other countries. The legislature passed it anyway, knowingly giving aid and comfort to Taiwan’s sworn enemies.
Ultimately, the contents of ECFA don’t matter as much as the fact that it was signed and approved. Regardless of what advantages to Taiwan may be in the agreement, Beijing is at liberty to renege on them. Beijing is infamous for violating agreements. What matters most is that a huge chunk of Taiwan’s economic sovereignty has been delivered into the hands of Taiwan’s enemies. With it, Quasi-president Ma has given Taiwan’s enemies the means to eventually destroy Taiwan’s political independence.