Saturday, February 11

More on the Seven Russian Soldiers Killed In Chechnya

UPDATE 2: Welcome Hugh Hewitt readers. Thanks for dropping in. I hope you will come back again.

UPDATE: I did find a reference to the rebel group being Islamists on mosnews.com. This was in statements by the Interior Ministry.
The dead suspects were alleged mercenaries for a radical Islamic group based in Chechnya, the Interior Ministry said. They were suspected of a series of attacks there, and of planning similar attacks against law enforcement authorities and strategic facilities in the Stavropol region.

They probably had planned to seize a school, RIA-Novosti reported, citing Viktor Barnash, the head of the Stavropol organized crime department.
I saw this story on Hugh Hewitt . I did a quick search on Google, and found more references to it on various Russian news web sites, but there was no mention in any of these articles about the rebels being Islamists. Are these journalist being politically correct? I am sure that in the minds of many legacy media journalists, these rebels are the moral equivalents of "freedom fighters" or something like that.

Also, from everything I have read so far, I did not find any reports of civilian casualties, other than the 7 police officers.

From Russia-Eurasia Terror Watch:
This afternoon, Kavkasky Uzel reported the names of the other three policemen killed by militants.

They are 21-year-old Lieutenant Ivan Voronin; 26-year-old Captain of the Kursky ROVD, Dmitriy Dermansky; and 21-year-old Kursky ROVD Senior Lieutenant Artem Yudin. Kavkazsky Uzel also reports two of the wounded policemen are in critical condition. One of them is in the Neftekumsky Central District Hospital Intensive Care Ward. "“He has numerous bullet wounds. We are evaluating his condition as critical,"” a hospital spokesman told Kavkazsky Uzel.
Mosnews.com is also reporting that a police officer was wounded from an IED in a neighboring region.
Meanwhile, in the neighboring region of Dagestan, a policeman suffered shrapnel wounds when an explosive device attached to a tree went off as he was passing by in a car, said Dagestani Interior Ministry spokeswoman Marina Rasulova.
Mosnews.com also has a Frame (video screen capture) from ORT-Channel.

Here is a good historical overview from the BBC of the ongoing problems with Chechnya. And here is the link to a BBC report on the police operation, which I'm guessing is the original report Hugh mentioned.

Tags: Terrorism, Terrorisme, ,
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Thursday, February 9

Classless Act: Show Funeral

Lee Harris compared the Democrats Bush bashing session at Coretta Scott King's funeral to Stalin's show trails.
The Soviets under Stalin were famous for their "show" trials -- trials that were put on not in order to judge a man's innocence or guilt -- since the verdict of "guilty" was always a foregone conclusion -- but simply as an exercise in propaganda. Bush critics have managed to devise a new ploy -- a "show" funeral, in which, instead of properly honoring the memory of the dead, the occasion is deliberately exploited for its propaganda value.

Shame on them.
HT: Instapundit

Chavez tells Blair to go to hell

Sticks and stones... Chavez continues to show how much of a simpleton he is, and continues to drive a wedge between Venezuela and the international community with his hatefull rehtoric. The Guardian has the story of Chavez telling Blair to "go to hell" in a speech during a rally in Caracas.
"Go right to hell, Mr Blair," he told the prime minister during a speech in western Venezuela, using local slang to deliver the line. His exact words, "váyase largo al cipote", have no direct translation into English.

Mr Chávez described Mr Blair as "the main ally of Hitler" - an accusation that he is siding with the US president in its confrontation with Venezuela. Mr Chávez has taken to calling George Bush "Mr Danger" and "Danger Bush Hitler" among other epithets, and added that he would now need similar nicknames for Mr Blair.

"You messed with me, so put up with me," he told the prime minister. Quoting the lyrics of a Venuezuelan folk song that he also recited when he called Mexico's president Vicente Fox a "lapdog" of the United States, he added: "I sting those who rattle me, Mr Blair".

Tuesday, February 7

Reducing Incentives to Illegal Immigration: Steps in the right direction

The problem of illegal immigration is a difficult problem for local communities, but it must be addressed! Marc Fisher's Washington Post column calls it "The Wrong Approach to Illegal Immigration," but reading through what he writes, I don't see a problem. Local authorities must be empowered to maintain order, and uphold the laws of the law. This is not about race, or discrimination, but about being within the boundaries of the law. To many "feel-good" socialist and leftist policies are at the root of the problem. If our laws had been enforced from the beginning, we would now see much less incentive for illegals to enter our country.
The House of Delegates has passed a bill to give state police the authority to enforce immigration laws; if the Senate and governor approve the plan, Virginia would become the third state to let police become immigration cops when they, for example, make a traffic stop.
I agree that it's the children that will suffer the most, but that is why we are a nation of liberty; individuals are held responsible for their actions. That is the exact message that would-be illegal immigrants need to get: if you enter our country illegally, your children will not necessarily have it better off.

Having said that, it is also time something was done about our current immigration laws and quotas. I'm no expert, but from what little I know, it seems to me that there is more work than available labor. Anyone in this country that wants a job, will and can eventually get one. Sure, it may take some time, months even. But there is plenty of work. We need to allow a safe, secure and orderly process through which we can welcome immigrants willing to work, contribute and integrate into our society.
Del. Jeff Frederick (R-Prince William), whose mother is an immigrant from Colombia, supported the ban as a disincentives to illegal immigration. "Look, my mother obeyed the laws and worked her butt off to come here," he said. "Like millions of other people, she waited her turn and played by the rules.

"People are fed up with illegal immigration, and they're demanding we do something about it. It's the overcrowded houses, the job market with the day laborers bringing down wages, the health system with hundreds of millions being spent in Virginia hospitals on illegal aliens, and all those ESL [English as a Second Language] classes taking away resources from other kids."
It just has to be done--no offense to the many honest, good men and women who have made the mistake, and committed a crime, in coming into this country illegally.

Carter at Coretta Scott King Memorial Service

Was it me, or did Jimmy Carter just drop a reference to wire tapping of Dr. MLK? It sure sounded like he was trying to make President Bush look bad.

Some of these speeches are just coming across as very political. Is this me, or did anyone else feel the same?

Update: Drudge has a report on the Bush-bashing session at the service.

Portuguese lesbian couple file for marriage license, open a battle for the legalization of same-sex marriage

AFP has a report on a new battle front in Portugal in the war against marriage. This seems to be about a week old, and according to AFP, their request was refused a day later. I can't find any follow up story, so I am wondernig if this is a dead story.
A Portuguese lesbian couple created a fierce debate in Portugal with their plans to file for a marriage licence in an attempt to open a battle leading to the legalization of same-sex marriage.

Helena Paixao, 35, and Teresa Pires, 28, who have been together for over three years, plan to request the license on Wednesday afternoon in Lisbon, fully aware that the bid will more than likely be turned down.

Portuguese law currently does not allow for same-sex marriage but the couple say they plan to argue in court that this goes against the constitution, which was altered in 2004 to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Here is a foto and more info via Yahoo Photos. From their own words, it seems this was just a publicity stunt to put further pressure on the Portuguese government to further legalize homosexual marriage in that country.

I'm doing some more research, and will post an update shortly.

HT: Portugal Alive

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Unesco, Castro Gives Chavez Jose Marti Award--So Why Did We Re-Join?

The New York Sun has a great editorial you must read (subscription required to read the entire article).
When President Bush announced in September of 2002 that America would rejoin the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization after an 18-year absence, this newspaper ran a critical editorial headlined "The Unesco Blunder" arguing that it was a waste of $60 million in taxpayer money and that not even the Clinton administration had rejoined Unesco. We were reminded of that editorial yesterday upon viewing the photograph - reproduced on our front page today - of Fidel Castro presenting the Venezuelan anti-American leader Hugo Chavez with a $5,000 Unesco award. This came but hours after Mr. Chavez's vice president had called Mr. Bush the "North American Hitler," the Associated Press reports. Mr. Castro is a ruler-for-life who jails political dissidents and whose country is on the American list of state sponsors of terrorism.
Here is the press release from UNESO:
14-12-2005 4:30 pm President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela will receive the 2005 International José Martí Prize in a ceremony that will take place in Havana (Cuba) on 28 January. The ceremony will coincide with the anniversary of the birth, in 1853, of José Martí the Cuban humanist, writer, translator, diplomat and teacher, who is known as the “champion” of Cuba’s independence. The Martí Prize was created in 1994 by UNESCO’s Executive Board on the initiative of Cuba to honour an individual or institution having contributed to the unity and integration of the countries of Latin American and the Caribbean and to the preservation of their identities, cultural traditions and historical values.
The Sun has a report on the award ceremony.
Castro and Chavez seized the occasion to criticize the government in Washington, taking advantage of the prestige of the United Nations and Unesco, which, like Turtle Bay itself, draws 22% of its annual $305 million budget from American funds.

"They will forever try to preserve the U.S. empire by all means, while we will do everything possible to shred it," Mr. Chavez said during a 2 1/2 hour long speech before 200,000 people gathered at Havana's Revolution Plaza, with Mr. Castro by his side, according to the Associated Press.
So, why would we want to be part of this organization that serves as a public relations arm to murderers like Castro and Chavez?
Back in September of 2002, Mr. Bush said, "as a symbol of our commitment to human dignity, the United States will return to Unesco. This organization has been reformed and America will participate fully in its mission to advance human rights and tolerance and learning."
The Administration would benefit from following the New York Sun Editorial's advice.
If the president is seriously committed to human dignity and advancing human rights, the right move would be to pull America right back out of Unesco, because the events of the past few years - and the photograph on our front page - have shown that Mr. Bush was mistaken when he said the organization has been reformed.
I could not find the fotograph in the NY Sun web site, but here it is via AP and Yahoo. In a time of inreased government waste, it amazes me that we support this sort of thing. What we need in D.C. is a little more common sense.

Monday, February 6

Communism Reruns: Marxist Oppression Advances in Bolivia

As I was telling a friend, why is it that Latin countries seem to never learn the lessons of the past. This time, the world cannot say they did not know what Communism is all about--repression.

DeepKeel posted on the move by Bolivia's new president to control the media.
Marxism is on the rebound around the world and especially in Latin America. Per the Marxist Operating Manual the first thing to do after winning an election is to use the tools of power to ensure communist rule forever. Control over the media is a crucial element of this, and the new marxist government of Bolivia is moving quickly to take charge of the media:

The Washington Times is covering the story.
Bolivia's new government has proposed legislation tightening regulations on the press, prompting fears of censorship among government critics and journalists.

Representatives of the ruling Movement to Socialism (MAS) maintain that the measures would affect only television and other electronic content considered "harmful to society."

"Control of the media has been a stated objective of Evo Morales," said a TV news executive, who asked not to be identified.

Members of Bolivia's leading press associations also fear that the government will use the measures to manipulate news coverage.

Some critics compare the proposed legislation to the Law of Social Responsibility in Radio and Television that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez enacted in his country a year ago.
Who is going to do something about this clear and present danger to the human rights of Latin America? What can be done? It seems these days have served to remind us all that election does not a free nation make.

If you are wondering why you should care, besides humanitarian and compasionate reasons, ask yourself where you think Bolivians will run to when things start going bad in Bolivia? United States of America, of course, land of opportunity and liberty for all. This wave of communism is only going to worsen the illegal immigration problem of our country.

Is NBC Covering-Up Anti-Christian Bias?

Unfortunately, I could not find a link to the original AP article for this story. According to Tyler Morning Telegraph, New York-based AP reporter Jake Coyle reported on rumors of a "Will & Grace" episode featuring Britney Spears, as a christian character who hosts a cooking segment titled "Cruci-fixins".

The American Family Association has been on top of this story mobilizing its members to speak out, and is now reporting on its website that NBC is backing off and covering up the whole thing.

Here is the statement NBC sent to their affiliates for the affiliate to use in responding to emails and calls:
Some erroneous information was mistakenly included in a press release describing an upcoming episode of "Will & Grace" which, in fact, has yet to be written. The reference to "Cruci-fxins" will not be in the show and the storyline will not contain a Christian characterization at all.
The Tyler Morning Telegraph reported on the story.
[Mike Delier, general manager of the local NBC affiliate] said he spoke with NBC executives in New York on Tuesday after reading the AP article describing the "Will & Grace" episode, in which Britney Spears portrays a conservative Christian "sidekick" to the character Jack McFarland on a talk show. After Jack's TV network, "Out TV," is bought by a Christian TV network, Spears' character contributes a cooking segment called "Cruci-fixin's."

"Those executives told me they were caught completely by surprise by the AP article," said Delier. "They told me they had no idea where the information came from, that it must be an NBC West Coast thing and as far as they knew, no such segment existed, was scripted, titled or produced or approved by NBC's department of standards and practices. It's a rumor."But New York-based AP reporter Jake Coyle, who wrote the article, said he was surprised by Delier's response.

"This information was released by the NBC (network) in Burbank," Coyle said to the Tyler Morning Telegraph on Thursday. "We were not the first news outlet to run that story."
I heard about the pending "Will & Grace" episode, but was not surprised by the fact that NBC was doing the same old thing--being overtly anti-Christian. The fact that NBC is now reverting their intent, and denying ever having plans for the episode is newsworthy. Being that the AP is not a great defender of the right, I have no reason to not believe Coyle's report. This goes to show that the networks are desperate and continue to show ignorance of what mainstream American faith and family values look like. So, while they have freedom of speech, if they ever intend to keep their ratings, they will need to do a reality check and start treating the Christian faith with respect.

Tags: Britney, gossip, Celebrities, ,