Saturday, November 22, 2008

Al-Qaida Turns 20 - Nears End of Life

Terrorism occurs periodically in waves throughout history that can last up to 40 years. Some come as tsunamis of intense violence, but after several years or a few decades, peter out. Al Qaida is approaching 20 years - happy birthday. The Base is aging out without adequate appeal to a younger generation enamored with blowing themselves and others to smithereens.

Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World is the fourth installment from the National Intelligence Council led project identifying potential and probable key drivers and developments that may shape world events a decade or more into the future. This is only a part of that report examining the future current terror groups and their potential for further affronts to civil order.

Why al-Qa’ida’s “Terrorist Wave” Might Be Breaking Up

As al-Qa’ida celebrates its 20th birthday, most experts assert that the struggle against it will continue indefinitely, the so called “long war.” Other experts who have studied past “waves” of terrorism believe that al-Qa’ida is an “aging” group by terrorist standards and suffers from strategic weaknesses that could cause it to decay into marginality, perhaps shortening the lifespan of the Islamic terrorist wave.

A wave of terror is a cycle of activity—which can last up to 40 years—characterized by expansion and contraction phases: rise, floodtide of violence, and ebb. The wave of terror concept was developed by UCLA Professor David C. Rapoport and provides a basis for the comparative analysis of terrorist movements. In each wave, similar terrorist activities occur in many countries, driven by a common vision—such as anarchism, Marxism, nationalism, or Islamic extremism. Terrorist groups who form the crest of each wave usually dissolve before the entire wave does, and their decay contributes to the breaking of the wave. Al-Qa’ida’s weaknesses—unachievable strategic objectives, inability to attract broad-based support, and self destructive actions—might cause it to decay sooner than many people think.

Research indicates that terrorists’ strategic objectives fail on two fronts. Objectives that pose a threat to the existing political order court tough counterterrorism measures, while objectives that are seen as neither achievable nor relevant to solving problems have little appeal to elites or the general populace. The two primary strategic aims of al-Qa’ida—the establishment of a global Islamic caliphate and the removal of US and Western influence so that “apostate” regimes can be toppled—are clearly threats to many existing Muslim governments and are resulting in stronger counterterrorism measures.

*There is little indication that the vast majority of Muslims believe that such objectives are realistic or that, if they could come to pass, would solve the practical problems of unemployment, poverty, poor educational systems, and dysfunctional governance.
Despite sympathy for some of its ideas and the rise of affiliated groups in places like the Mahgreb, al-Qa’ida has not achieved broad support in the Islamic World. Its harsh pan-Islamist ideology and policies appeal only to a tiny minority of Muslims.

* According to one study of public attitudes toward extremist violence, there is little support for al-Qa’ida in any of the countries surveyed—Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. The report also found that majorities in all Arab countries oppose jihadi violence, by any group, on their own soil.

* Al-Qa’ida is alienating former Muslim supporters by killing Muslims in its attacks. Recent scholarly research indicates that terrorist groups that kill civilians seldom accomplish their strategic goals. Although determining precisely the number of Muslims worldwide who have died in al-Qa’ida attacks is difficult, examination of available evidence suggests that at least 40 percent of the victims have been Muslims.
The roughly 40-year cycle of terrorist waves suggests that the dreams that inspire terrorist group members’ fathers to join particular groups are not attractive to succeeding generations. The prospect that al-Qa’ida will be among the small number of groups able to transcend the generational timeline is not high, given its harsh ideology, unachievable strategic objectives, and inability to become a mass movement.

In relying almost exclusively on terrorism as a means to achieve its strategic objectives, rather than transforming into a political movement like Hizbollah or Hamas, al-Qa’ida is using a stratagem that rarely is successful. Recent academic research indicates that only 6 percent of terrorist groups active in the last 40 years have achieved their proclaimed strategic objectives. Al-Qa’ida’s lack of success in executing attacks against the “far enemy” could portend a period of operational futility leading to increased frustration, decreased organizational √©lan, and inability to attract new members.

Because history suggests that the global Islamic terrorist movement will outlast al-Qa’ida as a group, strategic counterterrorism efforts will need to focus on how and why a successor terrorist group might evolve during the remaining years of the “Islamic terrorist wave.”
Though not mentioned in this report, it's important to recognize that no purely terroristic movement has ever succeeded in all of recorded history. Every terror movement has, like old soldiers, just faded away. There is no doubt the current al Qaida franchised terrorism will also fade away. Senator John Kerry, former Democrat presidential candidate, was the wrong messenger and stated the case with annoying nuance, yet was quite right when he said that terrorism is a manageable nuisance. Terrorism will probably always be part of normal life as the world's people become more intertwined, but it can be managed at an acceptable level of violence, like gang warfare is in Los Angeles.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Wife and Kids

- Kenney Chesney

Songs and blogs can sometimes get too personal, but that's life.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Copernicus Lost, Copernicus Found

Nicolaus Copernicus, astronomer and Catholic priest, had several good ideas in lifetime and one really good idea that changed the way we view the heavens and our place therein. In only six pages, Copernicus wrote out his ideas about his heliocentric hypothesis, the assertion that Earth and the planets orbit the Sun. With exceptions, the prevailing view before Copernicus was that Earth was the center of the universe around which all else revolved. His hypothesis challenged the Bible, the Church, previous theories and traditions, and was a major impetus for the work and thoughts of Galileo, Descartes, Newton and many generations of scientists.

When he died May 24, 1543, Copernicus was buried in the Frombork, Poland Roman Catholic Cathedral, but no exact record of the burial location within the Cathedral was made. As was the practice, the priest Copernicus was interred anonymously with other Church members under the floor tiles of the church. Remains were found in 2005 by Polish archaeologist Jerzy Gassowski, were reconstructed through computer generation technology. The remains were identified as Copernicus from a comparison between skeletal DNA and a hair found in one Copernicus' astronomy books.

Now we've reached the point of this post. On April 5, 2063, Zephram Cochrane, American scientist and developer of warp drive "launched his warp test vessel Phoenix from an abandoned Titan missile silo in remote Montana and unwittingly sparked first contact for Earth with a passing Vulcan ship." Okay, that was just a movie, Star Trek: First Contact. Cochran was played by James Cromwell who bears a striking resemblance to the great astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus. How did they do that?

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

SCOTUS to Hear Obama Elegibilty Case in Conference

The slow wheels of justice are beginning to turn and Barack Obama may be run over. The Supreme Court agreed to review a case in conference challenging Obama's eligibility to hold the office of President. The suit claims Obama is not a natural born citizens as required by the Constitution.



Today, the United States Supreme Court scheduled the case - Leo C. Donofrio v. Nina Mitchell Wells, Secretary of State of the State of New Jersey - US Supreme Court Docket No. 08A407 - for a conference of the nine Justices. The conference is a completely private affair and the public may not attend. If four of the nine Justices vote to hear the case in full, oral argument may be scheduled. The conference is scheduled for December 5, 2008, ten days before the meeting of the Electoral College.

The case originally sought, pre-election, to have the names of Barack Obama, John McCain, and Roger Calero removed from New Jersey ballots, and for a stay of the “national election” pending Supreme Court review of whether those candidates were eligible under the Constitution as natural born Citizens, as is required by Article 2, Section 1, Clause 5 of the Constitution of the United States.

Leo Donofrio brought his case from a lower New Jersey court to the NJ Supreme Court - was denied - and then he filed an emergency stay application in the United States Supreme Court on Nov. 3, 2008, before the Honorable Associate Justice David Souter. Justice Souter denied the emergency stay application on Nov. 6.

Leo Donofrio renewed the application, as per Supreme Court Rule 22.4, to the Honorable Associate Justice Clarence Thomas by way of Express mail on Nov. 14. The application arrived at the Supreme Court on Nov. 17 and was submitted directly to Justice Thomas.

On Nov. 19, the case was docketed for full conference of all nine Justices and scheduled for December 5, 2008.
Jeff Schreiber writes the blog America's Right has a great deal more information on the Donofrio case as well as the Philip Berg case. For the full time line of Schreiber's posts go here.

Additionally, Ambassador Alan Keyes, former Obama campaign opponent, filed a Writ of Mandate in Sacramento, California to stop the State's electors from casting their votes for Barack Obama. The writ claims that Obama has not provided documentary evidence for his eligibility to hold the office of President.

Legal Basis

62. Article II, Section I of the United States Constitution, states, in pertinent part, as follows:

"No Person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President;"

63. Senator Barack H. Obama is a candidate for the Office of the President of the United States. However, to assume such office, Senator Obama must meet the qualifications specified for the Office of the President of the United States, which includes that he must be a "natural born" citizen. Senator Obama has failed to demonstrate that he is a "natural born" citizen. There are other legal challenges before various state and federal courts regarding aspects of lost or dual citizenship concerning Senator Obama. Those challenges, in and of themselves, demonstrate Petitioners’ argument that reasonable doubt exists as to the eligibility of the Democratic Party’s nominee for President.
Their are approximately seventeen law suits across the US demanding Barack Obama provide the proof he is a natural born citizen as the Constitution requires. Some cases will be dismissed for various reasons, but some as evidenced above have sufficient cause to be considered for hearing.

The wheels on the bus go round and round...

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Cold War Defector Polar Bear Dead

Debby died at the age of 41 at the Assiniboine Park Zoo in Winnipeg, Canada on Monday. Debby, the oldest known polar bear, was euthanized Monday after suffering several strokes and organ failure. Debby defected from the former USSR to Canada in 1967 at the height of the Cold War.

"Debby was a great bear," said Jos Gatien, the zoo’s senior bear keeper who worked with Debby for 13 years. "She acted like a grumpy old bear a lot of times. It was great. She had a lot of life in her, a lot of feistiness."

Debby was born in the Arctic islands of Russia and came to Winnipeg in 1967.

She became a fixture at the zoo, outliving her mate Skipper and giving birth to six cubs.

This year she was recognized as the oldest living polar bear by the Guinness Book of World Records. Most polar bears only live into their 30s in captivity and Debby was just one month shy of celebrating her 42nd birthday.
How long do you think it will be until Debby's death is blamed on the Global Warming war?

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tina Fey/Sarah Palin Confused Even the Most Innocent

In yesterday's post, we learned how ill informed 12 Obamapostles are and, by extension, how massively ignorant and confused liberal voters are. However, when it comes to Sarah Palin v. Tina Fey, the confusion may be more than informational.

Karl Erikson, writer of Fame Crawler, a blog about celebrity kids for writes that even Tina Fey's 3 year old daughter, Alice, is confused by the striking similarity between the comedienne and the Governor. However, little Alice was spot on when told that Barack Obama is the new president. She said, "That's crazy!"

Tina Fey, who does a dead-on Sarah Palin impression but won't be doing them any more, says that her 3-year-old daughter Alice Zenobia is totally "confused" by her mother's resemblance to Palin. When Palin did Saturday Night Live on October 18, Alice was on the set. Tina was holding Alice while Governor Palin was on a monitor. Alice said, "I see you up there!"

38-year-old Tina replied, "No, I'm here with you." Lately, Tina says she's been testing her daughter with the newspaper. "I'll say, 'Who's that?' And she'll say 'Sarah Palin.' And then I'll show her my picture and say, 'Who's that?' She'll go 'Sarah Palin.' I'm like, 'No, that's mommy!' She looked at me and scowled, she was really mad when I corrected her."

When shown a picture of President-elect Barack Obama, Tina said, "His name is Barack Obama." Laughter burst out of Alice. "That's crazy!" she said. Tina says, "She thought that was the funniest thing she'd ever heard." It IS a pretty funny name.
Alice is not alone in thinking that's crazy and the funniest thing we've ever heard. Unfortunately, the rest of us will pay for the comedy show near term and Alice will pay years from now.

Tina Fey and SNL were allowed to define Sarah Palin in every possible way. One rule of Saul Alinsky states "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon." There is no defense against comedy. Palin tried to join in the fun by appearing on SNL, but it was at her own expense and she lost.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Obama Voters Didn't Understand the Question

Americans voted Barack Obama to be the next President of the United States of America. The least qualified candidate in the history of this nation and possibly not constitutionally qualified to hold the office. Twelve voting citizens and Obama supporters were interviewed immediately after casting their votes. The interviews were conducted "to learn how the news media impacted their knowledge of what occurred during the campaign. These voters were chosen for their apparent intelligence/verbal abilities and willingness to express their opinions to a large audience."

The answers were deemed "rather shocking" by the group doing the interviews, How Obama Got Elected, but were anything shocking or surprising to myself or my readers. One example is the Howard Stern audio clip of Obama voters in Harlem. This is just more with faces.

Zogby Poll

512 Obama Voters 11/13/08-11/15/08 MOE +/- 4.4 points

97.1% High School Graduate or higher, 55% College Graduates

Results to 12 simple Multiple Choice Questions

57.4% could NOT correctly say which party controls congress (50/50 shot just by guessing)

81.8% could NOT correctly say Joe Biden quit a previous campaign because of plagiarism (25% chance by guessing)

82.6% could NOT correctly say that Barack Obama won his first election by getting opponents kicked off the ballot (25% chance by guessing)

88.4% could NOT correctly say that Obama said his policies would likely bankrupt the coal industry and make energy rates skyrocket (25% chance by guessing)

56.1% could NOT correctly say Obama started his political career at the home of two former members of the Weather Underground (25% chance by guessing).

And yet.....

Only 13.7% failed to identify Sarah Palin as the person on which their party spent $150,000 in clothes

Only 6.2% failed to identify Palin as the one with a pregnant teenage daughter

And 86.9 % thought that Palin said that she could see Russia from her "house," even though that was Tina Fey who said that!!

Only 2.4% got at least 11 correct.

Only .5% got all of them correct. (And we "gave" one answer that was technically not Palin, but actually Tina Fey).
This demonstrates three points: (1) negative ads work much better than positive ads; (2) comedy is a very powerful tool; (3) increasing the voting pool is not always a good idea, some folks should just say no to voting.

The purpose of the interviews and the film "Media Malpractice... How Obama Got Elected", was to demonstrate how badly the media performed their function of informing the public in a democratic republic. I was and still am a member of the same media public as the interviewees. I knew all the correct answers while also watching the same media outlets. The fault, in my opinion, is not the media, but a willfully ignorant voting public. The truth is out there, anyone can see it and read it. These twelve Obamapostles and millions more didn't do their job at informing themselves.

The Gateway Pundit commenter, Biased Girl said...
I can't tell you how many times I had to explain to liberal friends the difference between Sarah Palin and Tina Fey.

Well, I can't tell you how many times I had to explain to conservative friends the difference between Sarah Palin and Tina Fey. Comedy is a very powerful weapon in politics. That even McCain/ Palin supporters were confused shows how much the Democrats were allowed to define the terms of the contest. That by itself is why the Republican ticket lost. The rest is commentary.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Other Barry

For many years it appeared that the principal domestic threat to our freedom was contained in the doctrines of Karl Marx. The collectivists -- non-Communists as well as Communists -- had adopted the Marxist objective of "socializing the means of production." And so it seemed that if collectivization were imposed, it would take the form f a State owned and operated economy. I doubt whether this is the main threat any longer.

The currently favored instrument of collectivization is the Welfare State. The collectivists have not abandoned their ultimate goal -- to subordinate the individual to the State -- but their strategy has changed. They have learned that Socialism can be achieved through Welfarism quite as well as through Nationalization. They understand that private property can be confiscated as effectively by taxation as by expropriating it. They understand that the individual can be put at the mercy of the State -- not only by making the State his employer -- but by divesting him of the means to provide for his personal needs and by giving the State the responsibility of caring for those needs from cradle to grave. Moreover, they have discovered -- and here is the critical point -- that Welfarism is much more compatible with the political processes of a democratic society. Nationalization ran into popular opposition, but the collectivists feel sure the Welfare State can be erected by the simple expedient of buying votes with promises of "free" federal benefits -- "free" housing, "free" school aid, "free" hospitalization, "free" retirement pay and so on... The correctness of this estimate can be seen from the portion of the federal budget that is now allocated to welfare, an amount second only to the cost on national defense.

I do not welcome this shift of strategy. Socialism-through Welfarism poses a far greater danger to freedom than Socialism-through-Nationalization precisely because it is more difficult to combat. The evils of Nationalization are self-evident and immediate. Those of Welfarism are veiled and tend to be postponed. People can understand the consequences of turning over ownership of the steel industry, say, to the State; and they can be counted on to oppose such a proposal. But let the government increase it's contribution to the "Public Assistance" program and we will, at most, grumble about excessive government spending. The effect of Welfarism on freedom will be felt later on -- after its beneficiaries have become its victims, after dependence on government has turned into bondage and it is too late to unlock the jail.

But a far more important factor is Welfarism's strong emotional appeal to many voters. And the consequent temptations it presents the average politician. It is hard, we have seen, to make out a case for State ownership. It is very different with the rhetoric of humanitarianism. How easy it is to reach the voters with earnest importunates for helping the needy. And how difficult for Conservatives to resist these demands without appearing to be callous and contemptuous of the plight of less fortunate citizens. Here, perhaps, is the best illustration of the failure of the Conservative demonstration.

I know, for I have heard the questions often. Have you no sense of social obligation? the Liberals ask. Have you no concern for people who are out of work? for sick people who lack medical care? for children in overcrowded schools? Are you unmoved by the problems of the aged and disabled? Are you against human welfare?

The answer to all of these questions is, of course, no. But a simple "no" is not enough. I feel certain that Conservatism can demonstrate and communicate the difference between being concerned with these problems and believing that the government is the proper agent for their solution.

The long range political consequences of Welfarism is plain enough; as we have seen, the State that is able to deal with its citizens as wards and dependents has gathered unto itself unlimited political power and is thus able to rule as absolutely as any oriental despot.
The Conscience of a Conservative, Sen. Barry Goldwater, 1960

Ronald Reagan is a hero to Conservatives today. Reagan's hero was Barry Goldwater. Get the book. Read it. Implement it. Reclaim the America the Founders gave us.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.