sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Geopolitical Thoughts

Kurdistan

The Kurdish people live principally in Syria, Iran and Iraq. Those areas are called 'Kurdistan', a term of art because there is no dedicated Kurdish homeland.  The US pulled troops out of the Syrian portion of Kurdistan but retains a significant presence and a large consulate in Iraqi Kurdistan. The corrupt, filthy, lying mainstream media isn't talking about that because it's not part of the narrative that their masters want you to think about. Syrian Kurds are dedicated communists and have maintained a loose alliance with the Soviet Union and now, Russia. They will take training and weapons from anyone who wants to provide it, and are allies of convenience.

The Kurds have one cash crop (and have had for millennia) and it is opium. Like it or not, that's it.

The DC Beltway is throwing a tantrum because President Trump doesn't want to engage in an endless war (with endless money being thrown at Beltway bandits). I realize that endless war has become a feature of American foreign policy, but the current president doesn't need or take the proffered bribes. It is the primary reason that the neocons (the same people who pushed President Bush into Iraq) hate President Trump.

The Syrian Kurds and the Iraqi Kurds are not really on speaking terms even though they are technically cousins. The Iranian Kurds are oppressed by Teheran. Big shock there.

Hong Kong

The Red Chinese are certain that America is behind the discontent of almost 90% of the people currently living in Hong Kong.  They believe that a Dr. Evil type character is somewhere in Hong Kong, stirring up the masses and if they can find (and eliminate) him (with extreme prejudice), that calm will be restored. That is really what the Ministry of State Security believes. 


When I first heard this, I said that they'd been watching too many movies. I didn't believe that they could be that naive. You see, all of the activities of the Ministry of State Security (MSS) in Hong Kong have been directed at 'finding Dr. Evil'. It has been much like an exercise in finding Waldo, except that there is no Waldo. 


They don't understand why people in Hong Kong are so upset. Half a million or so have become seriously radicalized. They are now using home made trebuchets to launch Molotov cocktails and get better range than throwing the flaming bottles by hand. I realize that it looks absurd to watch people wheeling  miniature versions of a giant medieval catapult down the streets of modern Hong Kong, but they are. 

The MSS declares secretly (because they are a secret organization) that the people of Hong Kong are so much better off than the people living in the Worker's Paradise. What is the secret sauce in their discontent if there is no Dr. Evil? What if there is no 'Royal Order of the Mystic Knights of the Sea' working against them rather effectively?

The public unrest has distilled into five demands. Let's take a closer look.

Governor Carrie Lam must step down. If she did, she'd simply be replaced by another martinet from the Mainland. It's a demand that could easily be met, but Beijing feels that any concession would be a loss of prestige/face and so the feckless, cripple (because she was born without a personality) remains in power in much the way that any puppet is. 

* Universal Suffrage. They want the vote. If "no taxation without representation" sounds familiar, it should. Beijing says that demand is preposterous. All Chinese citizens are taxed and they are all available to vote for the one candidate that the Party chooses for them. Beijing calculates that even under one Party, two systems, allowing people to govern themselves is a monumentally bad idea.

* Freedom for all those arrested in the protests. There have been about 2,000 arrests and most have been released on bail. They are still living under a British legal system and their cases are slowly making their way through the courts.

* Investigation into police violence. Not all of the Royal Hong Kong Police Officers dealing with the situation are actual HKPD. The ranks have been salted with police from the mainland to insure a form of political purity among HKPD, which are not entirely thrilled with their situation. They all live in Hong Kong. There have been a number of police beatings of people who are not even involved with unrest that the public captured on their cell phones. Beijing feels that any investigation of that type would undermine their authority.

* Complete withdrawal of the “extradition bill”.  That has already happened so the fifth complaint has been acceded to.

Tiananmen Square 1989
It's impossible to hold the lid down on a boiling pot and that is the only play that Bejing has come up with. It's not Tiananmen Square and it's not 1989. 

China had its big coming out party (2008 Olympics) and they're planning on another one (2022 Olympics), which was and will be designed to show the world how cool Communist China is, and how happy the people are living under a dictatorship. Hong Kong seems to be the foil in that aspiration - primarily because they were so much better off under the British. Yes, they weren't completely happy with the British but when they were replaced by the communists, the people of Hong Kong realize that they didn't know what they had or what they lost until they did.

What will happen to Hong Kong in the future? That is as yet unwritten, but unless the PRC changes its tactics, it's going to get uglier and it will destroy Hong Kong.

Mail

Jim - I suppose a knife that has had its point removed can't be used to slash. Better ban sharp edges on knives. According to the FBI, there were fewer than 300 homicides in 2018 with all rifles. London was over 130 last year for the total. I don't know the weapon breakdown, but I imagine those nasty ol' knives account for the bulk of them. It appears that one is more likely to be stabbed in London than shot with an AR15 anywhere in the US. "It scares me so let's ban it" is the repose of a once proud nation.
When you ban knives, only criminals will have knives...making a once proud people helpless in the face of people who would do them harm is never the answer.  The British feel that putting up these knife surrender bins is part of the answer. But then some of the enterprising at-risk-youth started breaking into them and taking the knives that their countrymen surrendered, so it turned out to be a less good idea.
raven - People obsessed with banning things are the type who never MADE anything, so the the objects to be banned represent some arcane mystical device, unable to be replicated by the hand of man.

Next on the list- grinders, files, hacksaws, mills, spring steel, rebar, etc, ad infinitum, till the mud huts beckon - wait, I take it back, even the mud hut crowd can forge steel. 
The secret of steel is out, unfortunately for the British... And yes, you can forge literally anywhere. Repurposing spring steel is a particularly useful way to turn rusted junk into an effective tool. It's good to have a hammer to forge with. They may ban hammers too?
Globalists would assert that once the entire planet is yoked under a one-world-government that all this will end and everyone will be happy. Workers will be content in this brave new world.  
WSF - Sarah Hoyt provides food for thought regarding the U.K. and Europe.
https://accordingtohoyt.com/2019/10/07/rough-music/ I hope she is correct.
Someone needs to update Dylan's, "The Times They Are A'Changing".
And it’s not just us. The rough music is already playing in the rest of the world. To the extent things haven’t gone completely and bizarrely insane — in the paint the room red  sense — it’s because there is the US. And they can’t read us. They have no idea what we’ll do. 
To an extent, despite our refusing open involvement, we’re what’s keeping the protesters in Hong Kong alive. We’re what’s keeping the antifa-like elements of the yellow jackets (not most of them, but an element) from turning this into just a pillage and rob expedition resulting in who knows what.  I don’t know what our influence is in the rest of the world, but I’d bet it’s not negligible.
The discussion you reference is sort of a long and rambling article and I think that it argues that a return to tribalism is inevitable. The example of Hong Kong is one of those that show that there are cracks in the Chinese veneer, though the core of the argument is directed toward the crumbling Europe. If you look at places like Austria, Hungary, Poland and Eastern Europe you see a very different scene than you do in Western Europe. Britain is attempting to take back its nation through BREXIT and we see panic among the EU components that has ensued. I am not saying that the article is wrong. It's well reasoned. I think that it could have been presented more comprehensively.
Will another civil war balkanize America? Will the public rise up and kill the anchors on MSNBC and CNN as tribalism favors the armed over those who are not? Who knows? 
LSP - There's a lot to be said for this post and I especially like the Kukri. Nice piece of kit. But obviously, when all the points are ground off the knives there won't be any more knife crime in Safe Space UK.
I don't know that I could tolerate life in the UK these days. I lived there some many years ago now, and it was different then. I think that the C of E is completely unhinged in their self loathing, their denial of the faith, their love for Islam and their demand that knife points be eliminated.
Jules - And you wonder why people wear clown noses, get up to no good in pubs, and buy wolves. 
They can ban and say what they want, knife crime is rife over here.

And it’s the puppets and muppets in government you need to criticise - they can’t even deliver what we voted for. We’d overthrow them but we have no pointy knives...
I criticize the Church of England for being stupid, particularly when it comes to knives. I criticize politicians. In America we used to tar and feather them when they did stupid things, but that practice has lapsed, obviously, and I criticize the British people for showing too little spine when it comes to the EU and their own politicians. Naturally when it comes to American political elites, I have absolute contempt. 
I became disgusted with 'civilization' in general, as you know. You were around when I hit that breaking point, and began to search for an alternative. It's not about being anti social as much as it is about finding that I'm happier when I'm not being pressed from all sides by unreasonable taxation, political correctness demands, unending traffic congestion, and politicians who did not have my best interests at heart.  
I'm about to eat French toast (my internationalism is showing) covered with maple syrup and big strips of American bacon. Fortifying myself against a return to the metropolis with all of its insanity, tomorrow. (Britain also needs to work on its bacon) 
Fredd said - That is one mamma jamma pointy knife above, LL. Just looking at it should be banned. Not quite a scimitar, but equally gnarly...

I think if they banned muslims, not knives, things would turn around in a jiffy. Think that's going to happen any time soon? Uh uh. 
Having a kukri like mine sends a message without speaking a word. I didn't think that I could get a kydex scabbard for it that would work,  but I was wrong. The Nepalese cranked one out and it's cool as well.  
Talk like that about the religion of peace can get you thrown in jail in the UK, or in your case, tossed out persona non grata, as an undesirable alien. As opposed to the Muslim guests in the UK who are revered and loved, rants of "death to this or that person" and knifing people at random, notwithstanding. I don't understand the British anymore. I really don't. 
I don't understand the American Congress either, so its not just the British.
Kle - I think Ghurkas are banned in the UK too... too much being on the side of civilization, don't you know. If they weren't banned, they would've let all those ones in HK back in '97 emigrate, instead of abandoning them to the ChiComs.
There is an expat Ghurka organization in the UK and I am personally friendly with them as is my friend from Norway, John Derva (who comments here as "Valuism" from time to time.  I don't know how the British handle the knife issue with them.
Wait.. Cory Booker thinks someone's impressed with Cory Booker's... manliness?
Nobody is more impressed with Booker than booker. As a closeted homosexual, he must feel that he can fool everyone with his manly bravado. He's just a taller and darker version of the Butt Guy. And since he's polling at somewhere less than 1% of the donkeys, I don't think that he's long for the race.
Paul L. Quandt - Pointy knives- yet one more reason I shall never be able to visit Blighty.
I don't know what's got into them.
Ed - Remember, some boxcutters took down some large airplanes and large buildings. Ban boxcutters.
If you mention it to Irish Bob (Beto), he'll likely do a youtube video of him cutting up boxes to demonstrate why they should be illegal. But if you round off the tip, could you still take down an airliner and three large buildings? 
Old NFO - I want to see the Brits take a kukri away from a Ghurka! I'd pay money to watch that!!!
I would pay good money to watch Julian Castro take your firearm away from you personally, or Beto, or Diane Feinstein or Hillary, or AOC. We could do a pay-per-view event and I'd take the action. Betting would be fast and furious. That's for sure. I don't know how we'd set odds but at 1,000 to 1, I don't know if we could get many takers. We could even line up the Dems and they could each make their try! The idea is big, I tell you. 
DRJIM - Spartacus might think Slow Joe has a chance, and want to be his VP.....
That could be. And with Slow Joe getting slower, Spartacus could have him declared non-compos-mentis  and sent off to the home and he'd be the default leader of the free world. It's not unlike the Bernie-Hillary ticket. I think that you're right. It's his only road to the White House. There's no other play for Booker.