PHOENIX, ARIZONA Topic: TiM READERS' FORUM
In this issue...Some reactions to... "A New Iron Curtain Has Descended Upon Europe" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/3-4, 3/14/99)
Some reactions to... "On the Brink of Madness" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/2-8, 2/25/99)
A reaction to... "China Kicks U.N. Butt, American Troops Out of Macedonia" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/2-9, 2/27/99)
Some reactions to... "Services-based Economy Means Cheaper Labor" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/3-3, 3/11/99)
For your smile J
Some reactions to... "A New Iron Curtain Has Descended Upon Europe" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/3-4, 3/14/99)
MASSACHUSETTS - "Great rewrite of the iron curtain speech! Do you remember when George Bush first began using the words New World Order in all of his speeches? I think right after he told the Kurdish people that if they gather up spears, nunchukas, and molotovs against (Saddam) Hussein, we would eventually come in and help them. Yeah, right after that speech either MTV or SNL showed a two-minute skit built by one of the editors at Spy magazine. It used a George Bush speech and an Adolf Hitler speech (German with English subtitles). They went back and forth between Bush saying New World Order, and Hitler saying New Order.
Bob, whatever the Germanic phrase for New Order is, it was precisely interchangeable with Bush's New World Order. Scary! Our flag is already seen around the world as a neo-swastika. How much worse could it get?
I'll never forget during Desert Shield, when my unit was stationed in Saudi, and sent for a replacement for me (because I was in between two knee operations doing physical therapy daily). My team chief wrote home that the Saudi government had ordered our troops to remove the American flags from our shoulders, because it made (local) people flinch, and didn't fit with the decorum of the war. They threatened to send us all packing if we didn't comply.
The only analogy their general could muster for our generals was that the US flag meant to them what the confederate flag means to people who believe in the "United States." Wow!
But to keep the war going, our generals sent the following order down their chain of command: "Flags are to be worn inside the BDU cap, beginning immediately." They (also) said something about the soldier and God being the only ones knowing the real reason we're there.
My team chief, an E-5, Afrikan-Amerikan hip-hop DJ, who likes to drive an Alpha Romeo, has an ex-wife in Georgia, and a couple kids by her, told me he thought it was complete bullshit. And (that) he couldn't wait till this stupid war was over, so he could go back to fighting oppression during his off-duty hours, in clubs around Denver, Boulder and Colorado Springs."
Marc Capelli, a Gulf War veteran
ARIZONA - It is ironic, providential and tragic that we have come a full circle, and that Winston Churchills speech on the evils of the Iron Curtain now fit NWO like a glove. This only goes to show you that the good and the sinister are not an inherent property of any system, belief, or order of things.
M. Vranjican, a former US Navy officer
ARIZONA - I was listening to that speech on the TV. Churchill spoke about defending 'Christian civilisation'. If he said that today he would be regarded as a freak, a Nazi , or not politically correct and refused the opportunity to speak again. How far have we fallen and in such a short time.
MASSACHUSETTS - I enjoyed the Churchill parody. NATO's expansion is essentially what I view as an annexation. It is imperialism for the next century maintaining the traditional Russophobia of the West.
MASSACHUSETTS - Bob: I don't know if you know this but when (Vaclav) Havel and the Polish president signed up to NATO, in some ceremony in front of the Czech Legislature, one of the deputies stood up, blew a whistle and burned a NATO flag. He was arrested for hooliganism. A poll taken showed that more than 50% of the population approved of his protest. Polls also showed that if there had been a referendum on joining NATO, it would have been voted down.
ARIZONA - Finally, what follows is TiM's own "Addendum" to our Churchill/NATO story, spawned, in part, by Col. Randy Givens of Texas, a Special Forces veteran in Vietnam (re. the Polish NATO news), and by Roger Ek of Maine, a US Navy helicopter gunship pilot during the Vietnam war (re. "USS Winston Churchill" story):
"The good news is we get to change our underwear," an old army joke quotes a Polish commander. "Stanislaus, you change with Wojtek..."
Just over a month ago, NATO added three new members to its lineup, including Poland. And so, no longer can such military pokes be passed off as "Polish jokes." Now they are a NATO reality. And that's no joke.
"NATO's latest recruits from Poland are often smelly, many don't get time to wash and some conscripts only change their underwear once a month," according to an official survey released on March 15. "Physicians have noticed that soldiers stink and their underwear is grey,'' Supreme Auditing Chamber (NIK) chief, Janusz Wojciechowski, told a news conference in Warsaw. He was presenting the survey which was conducted in 1997 and early 1998 in eight Polish military units.
The survey showed that in one unit, some 700 conscripts were given only three hours a week to take showers. In another, the soldiers' underwear was not changed for a month.
But soiled underwear isn't NATO's only BO problem. A heavy scent of imperialism, all too familiar to the small East European nations, is spreading from west to east across the Old Continent.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, April 14, 1999, the "USS Winston Churchill" is scheduled to be launched at Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine. Bonny Prince Charlie, Bill Clinton and Tony Blair are supposed to be there and blare their approval.
At the appropriate moment during the Bath, Maine, "US Winston Churchill" festivities (say, after the Clinton and Blair speeches), Winston Churchill joins them in a live broadcast, transmitted via satellite from the beautiful St. Peter and St. Paul cathedral, across the river Neva from the Winter Palace, where the former British Prime minister is addressing the St. Petersburg University academia, and other Russian dignitaries (as stated in our original piece).
After Churchill delivers his famous line ("From Belfast on the Irish Sea, to Trieste in the Adriatic; to Budapest on the Danube; to Istanbul on the Black Sea - an iron curtain has descended across the Continent"), Clinton, Blair and other dignitaries assembled at Bath, MA, becomel visibly agitated. "Turn that damn TV screen off!" Hillary Clinton yells at the event's MC. "Yes, do what she says, please," Bill also pleads.
The screen blinks, crackles, then goes blank.
As uncomfortable hush spreads through the Bath crowd, Clinton, Blair and others around them gather together to decide what to do next. After a brief huddle, Clinton steps up to the microphone and announces that they've made the decision to rename the new ship to "USS Vladimir Ilich." The scene ends with workers busily repainting the new name over Churchill's - to the tune of the US Navy band's rendition of the Communist International. Smiles return to the faces of Clinton, Blair, Hillary... as they wave to the cheering crowd. nSome reactions to... "On the Brink of Madness" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/2-8, 2/25/99)
ILLINOIS - The reference in your article about our leaders stumbling 'like a drunkard from pillar to post' brings to mind two passages of Scripture.
Isaiah 59:10 KJV declares, "We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noonday as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men." In Psalm 107:40, we learn with reference to the Almighty that "He poureth contempt upon princes, and causeth them to wander in the wilderness, where there is no way."
Isn't it interesting that the Almighty is very much involved in this phenomenon that we observe of our leaders wandering in the wilderness, so to speak, seemingly unable to do the right thing? We certainly see wisdom perishing from our leaders but we must not conclude that that means God is not in control. Taking wisdom from our wise men will accomplish His purpose quite effectively, no doubt.
Philip du Nard
SWEDEN - "NATO's build-up in Macedonia is incredible, and goes virtually unnoticed - except in that country," writes Jan Oberg, director and co-founder of the Swedish-based Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research, who has just visited the country. Dr. Oberg has conducted hundreds of interviews at all levels and with all communities over the last six years during his many missions to the Balkans. "The Macedonian Parliament has not even discussed the deployment of more than 12,000 heavily armed troops, and NATO bars journalists from investigating what is going on. NATO is now stronger than the country's own defense."
It took the international community, read OSCE, five months to get 1,500 civilian monitors into Kosovo. But it took only a few weeks to get the military build-up underway in Macedonia.
When will someone investigate how this happened, or who paid for this and the NATO build-up around Yugoslavia? Or ask what Macedonian Prime Minister, Ljupco Geogievski, was promised by U.S. Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, when they had breakfast recently in Washington?
Here is another reasonably relevant question: Since Christopher Hill, the main author of the Kosovo Agreement on the table in Paris and the diplomat who prepared the ground for those talks, is also the U.S. ambassador to Macedonia, did he calculate with this involvement of Macedonia and, if so, did he prepare Macedonian decision-makers in advance - or is this build-up something that has just unfolded as things progressed? Is there any reasons for circumventing normal politeness and democratic decision-making by host-nation?
Why is NATO all over Macedonia, an already troubled and quite a fragile state? For two reasons:
The Yugoslav military and political leadership now perceive Macedonia as hosting forces aimed at aggression on Yugoslav territory - friends of your enemies being your enemies too. German forces are strongly represented and bring heavy equipment, and it is the first time they may get into regular warfare and not peacekeeping. Not surprisingly, Yugoslavs conscious of history will be reminded of last time Germany came to that region (1941).
Should NATO bomb Yugoslavia it can NOT be excluded that the Yugoslavs will retaliate against NATO troops where they are nearest, namely in Macedonia, e.g. in Kumanovo, where they are co-located with UN Blue Helmets. Thus, paradoxically, countries participating in bombing raids, such as Norway and Denmark, indirectly jeopardize the safety of their own UN peacekeepers in the region - unless they are "extracted" too. Do politicians in these countries not see the connection?
The new coalition government in Macedonia is anything but experienced and cohesive. Two of the three coalition partners are traditional "extremist" parties, the Macedonian VMRO and the Albanian DPA. The third is a newly formed party, the Democratic Alternative, DA. This government's first foreign policy move was to recognise Taiwan in order to obtain a $1 billion economic deal - that has not materialized yet - and thereby antagonize China (see below).
Macedonia is a fragile country, economically constitutionally and in terms of unresolved problems in the relations between the majority Macedonians and the 25-30 per cent Albanian citizens. It has serious unresolved problems in the fields of education and in relation to its name and relations with its neighbors. The economy is a mixture of a petty market and pavement/pizza economy, black markets and far too few productive investments, profits run low, debts high. Recently when the three coalition partners were to evaluate the first 100 days, the Albanian DPA was not present. Be this as it may, it is not the least due to its prudent, gentleman-like president Kiro Gligorov, to the small but effective OSCE mission and the highly respected UN mission that there has been some stability in Macedonia compared with other parts of ex-Yugoslavia. Will there in the future?
Macedonia's ability to receive refugees is limited. It's contingency planning covers 20,000. If things go really wrong in Kosovo, at least ten times more may run away. To where? Well, in contrast to last year, economic crisis-ridden Montenegro may close its border (it took 50,000 equivalent to 10 pct of its own people). No Serb or Albanian will run to Albania if they can avoid it. So Macedonia is where most will seek safety.
Some 7,000-8,000 have already done so. Should it approach 100,000 or 200,000, the changing ethnic balance of the country and the general chaos would result in turmoil and breakdown. In addition, 12,000 NATO soldiers now occupy hotels, schools, barracks and even hospitals - places that one would believe would be desperately needed should refugees flow into the country.
So, all in all the government seems to follow the policy of the ostrich, hoping everything will be fine in Kosovo, that money will come from Taiwan and security from NATO. It can hardly be called leadership. It's a risky substitute for having one's own policies and ideas - and it bodes ill for its future.
"The new NATO deployment amounts to the destruction of the only - and successful - example of preventive diplomacy, namely the UN peacekeeping mission, UNPREDEP. It has happened in two ways: Macedonia's new government recognized Taiwan and, thus, provoked China which recently vetoed the extension of UNPREDEP in the Security Council. One may ask whether it was a calculated risk - in order to get the UN out and NATO in - and to get $1 billion? Was the Macedonian government surprised by the Chinese veto?
So multilateral arrangements were replaced by bilateral ones and regional security concerns grossly ignored. There is no doubt that Western nations, the U.S. in particular, could have reasons to get rid of the UN, as they did in Croatia, Bosnia and elsewhere - to present NATO as THE peacekeeper. Thus, "UN" will, in this field, stand for "United NATO." The question is whether this was a responsible act by China when seen in the longer perspective?
Macedonia cannot get into NATO soon, but it can let NATO into Macedonia. The price? Give up every independent idea about economic politics, security politics and foreign politics and adapt completely to the "international community." The U.S. and NATO "forgot" to ask the host, including president Gligorov, what the Macedonians thought about all this. It was never taken up in the Macedonian parliament. In short, a lesson for all in Western democracy...
In a long-term perspective, we are now about to witness the third round of Western-aided destruction of former Yugoslavia. First, there was the violence in Slovenia and Croatia; then Bosnia-Hercegovina and now present Yugoslavia/Kosovo threatening to not spill over into but drag Macedonia into international warfare.
In all cases, one or more actors were armed by Western powers. In all cases, the UN was squeezed out, and NATO came in. In all cases, violence was not prevented in time, and everywhere some "peace plan "was introduced that secured Western control, and permitted use of unlimited force "if necessary." In all cases, ordinary citizens are the main victims while all the presidents from 1991 remain on the top.
It is starting to look like a pattern, a strategy. Perhaps, after all, there WAS a plan somewhere?
Dr. Jan Oberg, director of the TFF conflict-mitigation team
SWEDEN - "Read the so-called 'Kosovo Peace Agreement,' and you are in for a few surprises," writes TFF director Dr. Jan Oberg. "I do not think that any recognized, sovereign state, would accept its CIVILIAN provisions, and its MILITARY implementation on its territory. No state likes to receive 'sign or be bombed' ultimatums, particularly not when the said plan implies the de facto end of its status as a sovereign state with territorial integrity."
The standard story with CNN, BBC, and the leading papers conveys the impression that the Serbs are just stubborn, and are stalling the peace negotiations, whereas the Albanian side is co-operative, as evidenced by a letter from their delegation leader of March 15. Yugoslavia deserves punishment while Albanians are praised for their "courage to compromise for peace." That's virtual reality and virtual truth. Real reality is way more complicated, says Oberg.
You must have noticed that no one has raised the simple question: Could there be some REASONS why Serbs say no, and Albanians say yes? Ask yourself why media and diplomats discuss the game and the blame, not the substance. Did YOU know," asks Oberg, "that the document on the table, among other things, decides that:
So there are two types of semantic tricks in this text: One is that the sovereign, recognized state of Yugoslavia is treated in terms of language and provisions on an equal footing with the Albanian self-proclaimed, non-recognized Kosovo, and its military unit, the Kosovo Liberation Army, the KLA. But this is a legal document, so it implies that - in practical terms - 70-80 per cent of the provisions and requirements are directed at the FRY, not at Kosovo, since only the former has the institutions, legal means and enforcement capacity to comply. So, in most cases when the document states what "the Parties" shall do, it applies actually only to the FRY.
The second is that the document repeatedly states respect for FRY's sovereignty and integrity, while grossly interfering with it in two ways:
This document is freely available on the Internet. Why are these provisions not analyzed? Why do we not have a qualified debate about whether or not this is a fair, trust- and peace-building settlement? Why only the focus on the game and NOT on the problems and issues? This is not a sports event, what is at stake is the lives of around 10 million people and future generations. So, what is the role of media and intellectuals if not to look into these matters?
According to my best judgment NO state in the West - least of all those of the Contact Group - would even consider granting self-government along these lines or being bullied into it by military threats and a military implementation.
Dr. Jan Oberg, director of the TFF conflict-mitigation team
RUSSIA - Thank you for the information about Kosovo. Ethnic conflicts are very sophisticated matters, especially when big political parties find their interests. I think that some circles in NATO and USA are much interested in continuation of the conflict and really do not want to stop it. Usually wars are a good chance to launder money.
ILLINOIS - Thank you, Bob, for your correct and intelligent views on Kosovo. As a veteran of North China (Tsingtao) 1948, Korea 1950/51, and Vietnam 1966, I never would have believed I would say the following: WE NEED TO GET OUR ASSES KICKED FOR BEING IN KOSOVO. You would think we would have learned in the above mentioned conflicts.
We lost all three of these conflicts and still haven't learned. It's beginning to look like the American people will shortly become the NEXT ENEMY OF THIS OUT-OF-CONTROL GOVERNMENT. May God Help Us All!
Utah nA reaction to... "China Kicks U.N. Butt, American Troops Out of Macedonia" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/2-9, 2/27/99)
U.S. (state unknown) - Gee whiz. Michael New refused to wear the UN patch on his uniform for deployment to Macedonia, and now the Commies booted the US out. Tsk, tsk....
But, we should have faith: The American cattle will run to the stores tomorrow, and charge and charge and charge - for new clothes, etc. "Made in Communist China," so they can continue funding our mortal enemy! I feel so happy.
(state unknown) nSome reactions to... "Services-based Economy Means Cheaper Labor" (TiM GW Bulletin 99/3-3, 3/11/99)
ILLINOIS - One thing on "service jobs:" The word "service" comes from the Latin "servus," meaning "slave."
U.S. (state unknown) - You've got that right. I've worked in engineering since 1972. Since 1969, I have had 28 jobs; 19 of them DON'T EXIST. They got bought and moved out of the state or out of the country. I am not talking about little places, either.
I used to work for TRW electronics components group (made aircraft connectors for all of Boeing aircraft - military and commercial. TRW sold that Division in 1988 or so, to the FRENCH, who have the aircraft connectors for Airbus and McDonald Douglas. So now they Have the WORLD market. Where was antitrust on this one?? Wouldn't you think that was "strategic"?
Just recently, I worked for Eaton Corp., and they moved one product line to RED China!!! Guess what? Out of work again. I am going back to school at the age of 52.
Oh, and by the way, the US government says the economy is so hot that they canceled the Displaced Workers Act. So now I get to pay the $6,850 tuition for my schooling, too.
TEXAS - Hey, Bob...It may be worse than you think! Isn't service something like servile?
Perhaps, it might be more representative of the troubled state of American initiative, if one contrasts between dependent and independent jobs, and not between industrial and service oriented jobs. Who, in this country is dependent upon a corporation, including the government to provide the necessities of their lives; like food, clothing and shelter?
I dare say less than 5% of this country are independent producers, the rest are consumers. Compare this to a mere 100 years ago, when the people were largely producers with a few indigent and government employees that were consumers on the system. So the analogy is that of the host (producer) and parasite (consumer). Where Americans once were independent producers, we have now become overwhelming parasites upon the system. Why?
Well, because we are inherently lazy. What initiative is there to be creative and forward thinking if the overwhelming need is to service what has already been created? It is a national disaster to allow corporations in need of a cheap servile class, to take the minds of Americans and program them to do menial tasks for this so-called service oriented society; from cradle to grave. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.
The emphasis on education, even in college, has now shifted from intellectual to vocational training; witness the teachers out of jobs or those frustrated with the task of classroom training in contrast to stimulating the pupil with intellectual challenges.
It is easy to be a parasite when there are thousands of jobs. Take your pick at $7.00/hour. America's largest employers of last resort, governments, now out compete personal initiative and the private sector for jobs! Since governments are supposedly not for profit and dependent upon taxpayers for their existence, how many more jobs in the independent producer sector can America afford to lose? Thanks for your dedication to the truth.
Patricia Ann Braun
For your smile J
Just follow the directions and you won't believe what Microsoft suggests as the replacement!!