Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Ten Thousand Maniacs

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  • Jason Kemp, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Thanks Russell. I don't think the "linkages" are straight forward at all. What has become clearer is that the host states on *all* sides have created a perfect storm of sorts. For example -part of that is supporting the Saudi government.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 368 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    Do you have any reference for that assertion?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Iyad El-Baghdadi tweeted about how the “cut off the funding” thing doesn’t apply so much any more. Isis is largely self-funding – and two thirds of its money comes from extortion.

    Also, “cut off Saudi Arabia” is a rather naive and simplistic answer when we take a look at who the world’s biggest arms exporters actually are and little will, or even ability, there is to check where they end up. Hint: Saudi Arabia isn’t one of them.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Do you have any reference for that assertion?

    NATO's Czech ammunition? Both John Pilger and Helen Caldecott raised the issue back in the day. Here's an example of someone stumbling across a stash from the late 60s.

    In retrospect there seems to have been far more trade with the Eastern Bloc than was apparent at the time. For example, Ceaucescu's Romania had a thriving light aircraft industry right through the 70s and 80s producing competitively priced components for the West, though none of it seems to have been overtly military.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Though you would have to wonder what these guys chatted about in the Green Room

    One inference seemed to be they’ve already gone through the motions of carving up the Syrian map. Fascinating viewing.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Joe Wylie,

    It's quite possible that, as suggested, that ammunition was made for sale to third countries using NATO calibre weapons. Given the protected nature of Western arms manufacturers, it's unlikely that NATO countries would want to go elsewhere.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Darlington,

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    In many ways, this game tonight should not have gone ahead. Big respect to the French players though, for digging in and insisting it happened. What a week they will have had.

    Nelson • Since Nov 2006 • 949 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Given the protected nature of Western arms manufacturers, it's unlikely that NATO countries would want to go elsewhere.

    Understood. While there are other online accounts of Czechoslovakian cold war era NATO calibre ammunition surfacing, some with detailed info on precisely which factory in the former CSSR produced it, I have to concede that there's no hard evidence that the main supply came from the Eastern bloc. Back when the claim was first made, it was in the context that presumably kosher suppliers were profiting from outsourcing to cheap manufacturers.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4593 posts Report Reply

  • Gabor Toth,

    I've been yelling repeatedly at the radio over the past few days at the often reported "fact" that this is the "deadliest violence to strike France since World War II". It's a terrible event for sure and I would never belittle it BUT the above statement conveniently ignores the Paris Massacre of 1961 which has been swept under the carpet of collective memory due to the fact that the perpetrator was the French State via Maurice Papon.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 137 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Gabor Toth,

    We’ll always have Paris…*

    conveniently ignores the Paris Massacre of 1961 which has been swept under the carpet of collective memory due to the fact that the perpetrator was the French State

    Perhaps Hollande triggered something with his recent (well 2012 is relatively recent) acknowledgement of the event
    (I’d not heard of it prior to this, I admit)
    there are many loose subtexts lying around…

    This Independent piece indicates France’s still festering relationship with Algeria is somewhat of an ongoing own goal in the battle against IS.

    and as an aside I like the little meme going around reminding folk that Steve Jobs was the son of a Syrian refugee…
    - fate and hidden consequences.

    *I know Casablanca is Morocco, not Algeria, but…

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7944 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    This Independent piece indicates France’s still festering relationship with Algeria is somewhat of an ongoing own goal in the battle against IS.

    On top of that, the French Govt used Algeria as a nuclear testing ground before the days of Mururoa Atoll.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5430 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

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    This US map from Tucker FitzGerald makes a very salient point. Not that that paranoid half of American politics will grasp it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22834 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Russell Brown,

    This US map from Tucker FitzGerald makes a very salient point. Not that that paranoid half of American politics will grasp it

    To them, a red state is a good state...

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2933 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    This US map from Tucker FitzGerald makes a very salient point. Not that that paranoid half of American politics will grasp it.

    The double down irony burn is that Governors have no legal power to "refuse" anyone legally in the United States shit. It's empty posturing, though I can't help but note a fair number of those governors are facing some combination of gubernatorial elections next year, the ever-present threat of primary challenges from the right or tough state house and senate elections for their parties.

    To them, a red state is a good state…

    With all due respect, nzlemming, let's not forget the Mayor of Roanoke who excreted this shameful turd is not only a Democrat, but mayor of a city Obama carried by 23.4 points in 2008.

    I'm reminded that President Franklin D Roosevelt felt compelled to sequester Japanese foreign nationals after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and it appears that threat of harm to America from [IS] now is just as real and serious as that from our enemies then.

    Sadly, nobody bothered to remind Mr Bowers not only were over 60% of Japanese internees in 1942 American citizens, but the overwhelming majority of those who weren't were issei, first generation immigrants who were forbidden by law from American citizenship no matter how long they'd lived in the United States.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I'm reminded that President Franklin D Roosevelt felt compelled to sequester Japanese foreign nationals after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and it appears that threat of harm to America from [IS] now is just as real and serious as that from our enemies then.

    That's quite the stinker, given that the US government eventually ended up paying $1.6 billion in reparations to 82,000 Japanese Americans (surviving internees and their heirs), along with a formal government apology that basically said 'sorry for being so racist'.

    Still, that's a tomorrow problem, eh, Mr Bowers?

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2728 posts Report Reply

  • Brent Jackson, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Although State Governors are opposed to refugees, a lot of city Mayors within those states are not.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 615 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Useful RNZ discussion.

    Professor Robert Patman, Head of the Department of Politics at Otago University, international security analyst Paul Buchanan, and lecturer in security studies at Massey University, Tim Wood, join Wallace to talk about whether military action is enough to defeat the jihadists.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19719 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    ISIS is what it is...
    Food for thought from unlikely sources...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7944 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    unlikely sources

    When Putin is sounding like the reasonable person you know things are truly FUBAR'd.

    But he does make the point that if you hand weapons to folks there is a good chance they'll do something bad with them.

    And in religious news the Pope gave a speech* saying he recongnizes all these wars and atrocities are occurring mostly because of ridiculous beliefs in sky fairies and so he is dissolving the Catholic church and will be returning all the loot they've stolen over the centuries and calls upon all other religions to do the same.




    *not really

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Brent Jackson, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    ... because of ridiculous beliefs in s̶k̶y̶ ̶f̶a̶i̶r̶i̶e̶s̶ life after death and ...

    Fixed it for you :- ).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 615 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Surely the Pope should be concentrating on the sainthood paperwork for Jonah Lomu and Richie McCaw?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    he does make the point that if you hand weapons to folks there is a good chance they’ll do something bad with them.

    Putin is bombing Kurds and other rebels as well as ISIS. Which is completely wrong.
    But this from TPM makes a good point: it's nuts for 'most of the world' to be actively against both sides in a civil war.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2109 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Rob Stowell,

    it’s nuts for ‘most of the world’ to be actively against both sides in a civil war.

    Do keep in mind that Assad has killed seven times more Syrian civilians than IS.

    Between January and July, Assad’s military and pro-government militias killed 7,894 people, while the Islamic State killed 1,131, according to the Syrian Network for Human Rights, a monitoring group based in Britain.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1436 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Alfie,

    Which hinges largely on how much trust you’re prepared to place in the sources. The Updated Statistical Analysis of Documentation of Killings in the Syrian Arab Republic Commissioned by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights notes (p.20):

    Of the 189 739 unique killings, only 4877 were reported by all four Syrian human rights groups.

    Discussed here:

    The UN’s count is based on data from these 8 sources:

    ‘1. The March 15 Group

    2. The Syrian government

    3. The Syrian Center for Statistics and Research

    4. The Syrian Network for Human Rights

    5. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights

    6. The Syrian Revolution General Council

    7. The Syria Shuhada Website

    8. The Violations Documentation Centre, the documentation arm of the Local Coordination Committees’.

    All of them, barring the Syrian government, are opposition sources. If you don’t want to take my word for it, even the most cursory of Google research efforts will reveal that to be true. The report states that ‘each data collection organization determines their own methods for data gathering and verication‘ (p.4, emphasis mine).

    It hardly needs pointing out, then, that problems could arise when the vast majority of your raw data is being provided by one side in the conflict.

    Faith of almost religious proportions is required in order to assume the veracity of reports about a country that Reporters Without Borders ranked 177th (and dropping) out of 180 countries for press freedom.

    I’d sooner put my faith in whatever those who get their kicks mocking the religious are calling God these days. That is not at all.

    Mawkland • Since Jan 2010 • 1302 posts Report Reply

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