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(Blue) Cheese-Eating Surrender Monkey

Over at Wizbang Blue, Mr. Paul Hooson recently wrote a piece called "John McCain's High Risk Foreign Policy." In it, he takes issue with some tenets of Senator McCain's proposed stance in regarding to certain international issues.

Mr. Hooson's opinions can be summoned up, in brief, as "the wimp principle." "If we don't offend anyone and let the bullies have their way, maybe they'll like us" seems to be the underlying principle.

For example, Hooson opposes McCain's pledge to move the US Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Israel's capital. Apparently Mr. Hooson is unaware that several presidents have made such a pledge, and it has yet to happen.

He also gives a very one-sided accounting of the history and significance of Jerusalem. He goes to great lengths to elaborate on the importance Muslims place on the city, but gives very short shrift to the its role in Jewish history and theology. He also gives far too much credence to the Muslim claim to Jerusalem.

The Muslims proclaim that Jerusalem -- more specifically, the Temple Mount and the Dome Of The Rock -- as the third most holy place in Islam. It is where they say that Mohammed last set foot on earth before ascending to Heaven.

Oddly enough, the name "Jerusalem" never appears once in the Koran. The idenfitication of the Temple Mount as Mohammed's point of departure is based on very creative interpretations of the Koran.

And, oddly enough, he just happened to hop on that flying horse on the Temple Mount, the number one most holy site in Judaism.

The Temple Mount got its name because long before Mohammed existed, the Jews built the First Temple. And after it was destroyed, they built the Second Temple on the same spot.

Remember those photos of Barack Obama at the Western Wall (or, if you prefer, the Wailing Wall)? That's often referred to as 'the holiest site in Judaism." It won that by default -- tt's the last surviving part of the Second Temple. The rest of the grounds of the Temples are now covered by mosques and under the strict control of Muslims.

Islam has a lengthy history of plagiarizing other religions and adopting their tenets of their own. Mohammed took the basics of Judaism and Christianity and said that they were the predecessors of Islam, and it was the "perfection" of those faiths. And wasn't it just an astonishing coincidence that the third holiest place in Islam just happens to be atop the first holiest site of Judaism?

Well, not really. It isn't a coincidence. Islamic "archaeologists" on the Temple Mount are busily trying to document that the Temple Mount was always Islamic, and never Jewish. In the process, they are digging up and destroying every trace of Jewish occupation on that site. We know this because, luckily, they're incompetent -- we keep finding the stuff they dig up in dumps.

So, Mr. Hooson wants the Jews to just give up on Jerusalem and turn it over to the Palestinians because they say they want it and threaten force to get it. Hey, why not? They've done such a bang-up job running the territories they've been given so far (visited Bethlehem lately?), why not give them the city that's holy to three religions?

Mr. Hooson also takes issue with Senator McCain's daring to meet with the Dalai Lama. This man is the living embodiment of Tibetan Buddhism,a nd a living reminder that China invaded and conquered that country, and continues to keep them in brutal oppression. Also, the Dalai Lama (quite possibly the most peaceful man on earth) cannot return to his homeland without the risk of being arrested, killed, or just quietly "disappeared." But because China buys a lot of our high-tech stuff and sells us a lot of cheap stuff, and occasionally reins in North Korea, we should endorse their subsuming of Tibet and pretend that the Dalai Lama doesn't exist.

Finally, Mr. Hooson is deeply, deeply troubled by Senator McCain's willingness to confront Iran. He fears that if we elect McCain, we might end up at war with Iran. And why does he think that this is a bad idea? Let's look at his own words:

"Iran has already proven that it would sponsor terrorism to kill American civilians right here at home in response to any such war with their nation."

I'm not familiar with whatever incident or incidents Mr. Hooson is referring to here, but it sounds like he knows that Iran has already committed at least one act of war against the US, here in the US.

So, what is Mr. Hooson's advice here? The same as in the prior two examples.

Cowardice.

Don't confront the bullies. Don't stand up to threats. Don't stand up for principle. Don't stand up for our allies.

Give in to the thugs. Offer concessions to the tyrants. Don't confront the bad guys. Appease the dictators.

And maybe, just maybe, they might like us.

He might be right. It could work that way.

If it does, though, it'd be the first time. Usually, it leads to contempt for the appeasing nations, and demands for more and more conessions. And it ends when you either surrender to the enemy or you finally find some stones and fight them -- and that struggle ends up costing a hell of a lot more than if you'd stood up to them in the first place.

Mr. Hooson's idea of proper diplomatic posturing seems to involve bending over, grabbing his ankles, and saying "please, sir, may I have another?"

Thanks, but no thanks. I learned a long time ago that trying to be liked at any expense is incredibly self-destructive. Simply be yourself, strive to be respected (and respectable), and you will most likely be liked by those whose affections are worth having.

And if you end up pissing off some people, that isn't necessarily a bad thing. Being disliked by bad people is sometimes a sign you're doing something right.

And if we are pissing off the tyrants of Iran, the dictators of Beijing, and the psycho terrorists of Palestine and the rest of the Islamic world, then we just might be on the right track.


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Comments (24)

'Zactly right, Jay Tea.... (Below threshold)
Laura:

'Zactly right, Jay Tea.

We should have busted Iran'... (Below threshold)
Baron Von Ottomatic:

We should have busted Iran's chops as soon as the Soviet Union collapsed.

Start a war with Iran? Uh, they invaded American soil in 1979 when they took over our embassy.

You mean you actually read ... (Below threshold)

You mean you actually read Wizbang Blue? Hmmm...I wonder who the other person is...? You do read it for the accidental comedy, right? ;-)

Tom, if you TELL them you a... (Below threshold)
epador:

Tom, if you TELL them you are laughing, they ban you! Sniggering silently hurt my sinuses so much yesterday I slipped a ROFL and a ROFLMAO into two comments and got a "first, last and only warning" that I just couldn't pass up.

Unfortunately, banning doesn't prevent you from viewing the site, only commenting.

Back to topic. JT: You could have added Paul's comment in one thread about his business dealings with the Chinese Communists, being such polite and likable fellows of integrity. That would have been an example of why he is blind to the effects of appeasement. I really appreciate his intellectual and polite approach to discussion, but sometimes when he fails to connect the dots he's placed I find it painful to watch. On the other hand, I appreciate his comments about synthetic oils and vegan strip clubs in Portland. Let's hear it for diversity!


"While Senator Barack Obama... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"While Senator Barack Obama flawlessly wrapped up a highly successful tour of the Mideast and Europe last week and helped to raise up respect for the United States after the frictional foreign policy of George Bush..."

"Flawlessly"? Really? "...helped to raise up respect for the United States...."? Already?
Just by his mere presence? Wow!

Hooson needs to pull his head out of his anal cavity.

Mr. Hooson's opinions ca... (Below threshold)
Denise:

Mr. Hooson's opinions can be summoned up, in brief,

You may mean summed but Mr. Hooson is the longest winded person on the Internet.
Moving the capital to Jerusalem would insure more problems in the Middle East. I grew up there, it is holy to many people/many faiths.

Jay, I certainly welcome an... (Below threshold)

Jay, I certainly welcome any such analysis of my writings, however I certainly made it very clear in my piece that Jerusalem was the legitimate capital for the ancient Jewish states of Judea and Samaria. And I did state that the Palestinians do not have any legitimate historic claim to the city which was overrun by conquering armies from Babylon all the way to Rome. And certainly the Koran makes no mention of the city of Jerusalem as well. We all agree on those points.

You do also know that Palestinian teams of archaelogists have conducted digs around the ancient city and that there are claims that they routinely destroy any evidence of the ancient Jewish culture from old Jerusalem in their effort to revise history. The fact is that modern Israel should have every right to make Jerusalem their capital, but for more important security and peace reasons simply cannot because of the holy site of the Mosque in the city to the Muslim faithful. Tel Aviv is a good compromise for now.

But I know that as a candidate, Mr. McCain is only looking for some cheap votes, so by making some cheap political appeal to moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, he may shore up some support among the right wing of the American Jewish community. But moderate Jews and most Americans in general concerned with advancing the Mideast peace process are probably much more concerned with maintaining some sense of an even handed approach towards both Israel and the Palestinians and bringing both to the peace table and not inviting a serious riff over Jerusalem. If John McCain is merely making silly election year pandering for votes, then that's fine, he's just being a typical politician. But if he really seriously intends to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, then he only invites a serious worldwide Muslim reaction and backlash. The current more "international city" approach towards Jerusalem seems to work best for now, although it hardly leaves many Jews or Muslims entirely happy, but it does keep the peace.

Ultimately, you know that even the Old Testament finds that some future conflict over Jerusalem will create a huge future war that will kill 2/3 of mankind. Read Ezekiel, especially around chapters 38 to 40 for this. But let's put this off during our own lifetimes instead of inviting the deaths of 2/3 of mankind during the McCain Administration years. You think?

I also have no objections to John McCain meeting with the Dalai Lama at some point. But so close to the opening of the Olympics only heightens the prospects of protesters pulling stunts during the Olympics or even encouraging worse acts that can endanger the security of the games, tourists or even the athletes. I'm a strong supporter of religious freedom and even subscribe to some religious freedom publications. But it's simply too close to the Olympics to encourage some radicals on the Tibet issue to act up in some way and create some problems. Tibet needs a decent solution, but in a careful manner in the future after the Olympic Games which shouldn't become a stage for a bunch of political protests. The Olympics are about the athletes and creating a better world community, not some political stage for groups to showcase issues.

What if the Olympics were held in the U.S. and every intenational group that opposes the Iraq War or other American policy decided to hold disruptive protests. You can see all the danger in of this. Look at that antiabortion wacko, Eric Rudolph, that exploded that bomb during the 1996 Summer Games in Georgia to make some wacky political point that killed two and wounded 111. If hero security guard Richard Jewel hadn't began to move persons from the area where the suspect backpack bomb was left, the number of killed and wounded would have been far worse. For security reasons we just don't want to invite such wacky behavior or security threats during the Olympics. McCain should be smart enough to see that point. He claims to be some "national security expert", you know.

But, it was also sort of funny how John McCain looked so uncomfortable when the Dalai Lama held his hand for an extended period and made a long statement, where even McCain began to realize that this political stunt may not have been the very best campaign idea. McCain's uncomfortable look told you that his heart wasn't really in this photo-opt stunt. But McCain went along with it anyway.

But one must also accept that the cooperation of China on many international matters is so vital such as North Korea or preventing Iran from developing nuclesr weapons, and that China is a huge trade partner, or helps to prop up the huge American federal budget deficit by the purchase of billions of dollars in U.S. bonds, that the relationship with China is far more important than allowing some religious leader to stand in the way. But I do hope that China will improve it's role towards Tibet if the U.S. continues to put it on the table in a gentle way that doesn't harm the more important larger picture of international cooperation between the great powers of the U.S. or China.

My real problems with John McCain is his cheap election year pandering on so many issues such as the Jerusalem embassy issue, which is flat out dangerous if he really means it, his wacky signals to China right before the critical security measures for the safety of the Olympic Games as well as his pandering on the oil drilling issue, although McCain probably knows full well that it may take up to 10 years for any motorist to see even one drop of oil from this drilling. McCain seems to be going for all the cheap photo-opts and cheap issues, no matter the real actual cost. I personally find this intellectually dishonest in some areas, all the way to flat-out dangerous in some other areas.

I think that I raised some serious questions about John McCain's approach to foreign policy in my orinigal piece on WIZBANG BLUE. McCain's views on foreign policy are simply not ready for prime time. Together with his hawkish military views towards Iran, McCain is the high risk choice for president this year. In the 2000 election the stakes became clear that it was the choice between going into Iraq or not. But this year, McCain may have made the stakes much higher yet.


Not sure I've ever see so... (Below threshold)
irongrampa:

Not sure I've ever see someone use more words to say nothing.

Not sure I've ever... (Below threshold)
Maggie:
Not sure I've ever see someone use more words to say nothing.

Strong lungs = long winded, and well exercised
fingers. :P

#7In a word, Jabbe... (Below threshold)

#7

In a word, Jabberwocky.

Minus the poetic meter and cadence.

The video for <a href="http... (Below threshold)
ed davis:

The video for July 25, 2008 also addresses this issue.

Check it out if you are interested. It only runs about 1/2 hour. So it takes less time to watch it than it does to read the Hooson's gobbledygook.

How does he find time to po... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

How does he find time to post here ? It is so busy over at "blue" that the post meter stops counting at ONE.

Everyday lately has been a ... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

Everyday lately has been a challenge for me here. If I'm not spewing my coffee, I'm left speechless and stuttering.

I guess for Paul H it's never a good time to do anything that "might" piss someone off. The Jerusalem Embassy Act was passed by a huge margin in '95 (I looked it up - 89%) and in the wake of some half a dozen major Palestinian terror attacks that year. The act stated that the embassy should be moved by 1999. Were they just trying to piss off the Palestinians? I'd say they were already pissed off. Too bad there weren't any teeth in the Act. The Palestinians would have had the last 9 years to get over it.

Paul's immediate assessment of what "might" happen because McCain talked to the Dalai Lama; possible riots, endangerment to human life, etc. is just blabber. "What if the Olympics were held in the U.S. and every intenational group that opposes the Iraq War or other American policy decided to hold disruptive protests."

Wow!

Then he uses an example of Eric Rudolph who went nuts and didn't need any such provocation. Paul might have a point there if the guy did it in response to a presidential candidate's photo-op getting huggy-kissy with some abortion group leader. That wasn't the case at all. He chose the Olympics as a venue for his deed because it was high-profile and would get the most coverage. That's the reason for most such acts.

In that case, the IOC should retract the statement of regret for putting the games in China. Someone might get mad.

And McCain's meeting with the Dalai Lama is a "cheap political stunt"? I suppose Angela Merckel's meeting was a cheap political stunt. And Nancy Pelosi's meeting. And Canada's Boshkoff. These were all this year and numerous other meetings over the years while china rattled sabers and threatened to halt trade, blah, blah, blah. Oh, and wait! Even Obama regrets they could not meet this past June because of their travel schedules. What is he thinking!!?? These people couldn't possibly be standing up for what they believe in - openly and in defiance of threats? Could they? Why, that just wrong!

I think Jay's assessment of Paul's approach is right. Don't upset them. Don't openly show support for anyone they might take issue with. Appease them, massage them and talk nice-nice and maybe, just maybe, they'll honor any promises they make. Even though they haven't in the past. But hey, one can hope.

WOW.. there really IS a Wiz... (Below threshold)
Knightbrigade:

WOW.. there really IS a Wizbang BLUE!!!???

I'd visit but I haven't had my moonbat vaccination....

"But because China buys... (Below threshold)
marc:

"But because China buys a lot of our high-tech stuff and sells us a lot of cheap stuff, and occasionally reins in North Korea, we should endorse their subsuming of Tibet and pretend that the Dalai Lama doesn't exist."

If Paul H. quit sucking the Chinese anus so hard he wouldn't have those oh so ecco-friendly scooters he so blatantly pimps here and rides til he tumbles on his head.

I have two general comments... (Below threshold)

I have two general comments -

Religions plagiarizing and cribbing elements from others that grew up nearby is nothing new, and is certainly not original with Islam. Christianity, for instance, shares elements with Mithraism. The late depictions of Livia Drusilla (wife of Ceasar Augustus - or Octavian) look astonishingly like the Virgin Mary, as do those of Isis. This is no denigration or endorsement of any religion, but some of this stuff does appear to simply spread culturally.

Secondly, the problem with superpower foreign policy is that we only really have sixty years of our own record to study, and the winds shift such that - in my opinion - sometimes an aggressive stance is warranted, sometimes a more passive cooperative approach.

Regarding Iran, it's hard to say which would be more constructive at this point. I'm leaning toward conciliation with the Chinese regime, and a harder line on Iran (though short of invasion), given the possible destablizing effect they could have (and might be having now). The bottom line on China is we have more to lose from them than they from us. They can find markets.

There a readers digest vers... (Below threshold)
Ran56:

There a readers digest version of Paul's post? I have to be to work in an hour.

"There a readers digest ver... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

"There a readers digest version of Paul's post? I have to be to work in an hour."

Yes. As follows:

"This mind intentionally left blank."

Christianity, for instan... (Below threshold)
Clay:

Christianity, for instance, shares elements with Mithraism.

If you repeat a lie often enough, people will start to believe you. But, the truth is that saying something doesn't necessarily make it so. The above poster makes the claim that Christianity plagiarized Mithraism to arrive at Christ's story. The truth is that historical research disputes the claim. Mithraism, as it was originally constructed in Persia, bears no resemblance to Christianity whatsoever. Mithraism was actually revised by the Romans much later. A quick trip on the information super-highway (thanks, Al!) reveals the following:

1) The earliest references to Mithra come from the ancient Hindu literature. However, just what people believed about him at that time is unknown. J.P. Arendzen writes, "The origin of the cult of Mithra dates from the time that the Hindus and Persians still formed one people, for the god Mithra occurs in the religion and the sacred books of both races, i.e. in the Vedas and in the Avesta. In Vedic hymns he is frequently mentioned and is nearly always coupled with Varuna, but beyond the bare occurrence of his name, little is known of him (Rigveda, III, 59)." ~Arendzen, J.P. . "Mithraism."

2) Mithraism is an example of a mystery religion that flourished in the near east at that time. David Ulansey explains it is called such because " ..like the other ancient 'mystery religions,' such as the Eleusinian mysteries and the mysteries of Isis, the Mithraic cult maintained strict secrecy about its teachings and practices, revealing them only to initiates. As a result, reconstructing the beliefs of the Mithraic devotees has posed an enormously intriguing challenge to scholarly ingenuity..."

"Owing to the cult's secrecy, we possess almost no literary evidence about the beliefs of Mithraism. The few texts that do refer to the cult come not from Mithraic devotees themselves, but rather from outsiders such as early Church fathers, who mentioned Mithraism in order to attack it, and Platonic philosophers, who attempted to find support in Mithraic symbolism for their own philosophical ideas." ~Ulansey, David. "The Cosmic Mysteries of Mithras." revised 1991.

3) Because of the lack of textual evidence for early Mithraism, there is no way to positively assert that the ideas that seem to correspond to Christianity were ever taught prior to the second century A.D. after all of the Christian texts that make up the New Testament had been in wide-spread circulation. In fact, most scholars take a dim view of that idea. Dr. Edwin Yamauchi dismisses this hypothesis in stating "Those who seek to adduce Mithra as a prototype of the risen Christ ignore the late date for the expansion of Mithraism to the west (cf. M. J. Vermaseren, Mithras, The Secret God, 1963, p. 76)." ~Yamauchi, Edwin M. . "Easter: Myth, Hallucination, or History?." March 29, 1974.

4) In fact, Mithraism seems to change drastically from its Persian roots when it becomes a Roman cult. Romans adapted the military cult into something much more comfortable and understandable for their form of worship. Scholars Beard, North and Price agree stating, "The form of the cult most familiar to us, the initiatory cult, does not seem to derive from Persia at all. It is found first in the west, has no significant resemblance to its supposed Persian 'origins', and seems largely to be a western construct." ~Beard, Mary, John North and Simon Price. Religions of Rome Volume I. Cambridge university Press. New York NY. 1998 p.279

Conclusion: When studying the ancient Mithraism, the one that came before western influence, we see that it reads much more like other ancient myths rather than early Christianity. Norman Geisler summarizes this by saying "We do know that Mithraism, like its mystery competitors, had a basic myth. Mithra was supposedly born when he emerged from a rock; he was carrying a knife and torch and wearing a phrygian cap. He battled first with the sun and then the primeval bull, which then became the ground of life for the human race."

In comparison, Geisler points out that "the foundation stones of Christianity are patently taken from the Old Testament, Judaism generally, and the life of a historical figure named Jesus." ~Geisler, Norman. "Mithraism." Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics. 1999

I apologize both for this departure from the topic, and for the length of my comment. However, I assume that everyone has an interest in the truth, and that lies, however unintentional, must be confronted.

The "Readers Digest version... (Below threshold)
OhioVoter:

The "Readers Digest version" of Paul's comments is .....

"Jay is correct."

He didn't refute anything said earlier in the post ..... although he seemed to be thinking he was.

Instead he simply repeats all his claims as if repetition is all that is needed to make them true and/or convincing.

But, it was also sort of funny how John McCain looked so uncomfortable when the Dalai Lama held his hand for an extended period and made a long statement, where even McCain began to realize that this political stunt may not have been the very best campaign idea. McCain's uncomfortable look told you that his heart wasn't really in this photo-opt stunt. But McCain went along with it anyway.

In addidition to Paul's oft-cited expertise in other areas, he apparently believes that he also has the ability to read minds. Just by looking he knew what McCain was really thinking - and, of course, there must be something homophobic about it if Paul is to be believed.

In the interest of fairness, there is one other explanation of Paul's response.

He may simply not be a very good writer.

JT's post=Correct. Paul Hoo... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

JT's post=Correct. Paul Hooson's comment helped prove it. Paul is weak and wants to surrender everything for no one. ww

Ohiovoter:Inste... (Below threshold)

Ohiovoter:

Instead he simply repeats all his claims as if repetition is all that is needed to make them true and/or convincing.

Isn't that SOP? Keep repeating and repeating, not allowing any other opinion to gain a foothold, and eventually you'll gain control of the narrative? And after all, narrative is MUCH more important than actual facts, as CNN and such have shown us.

Hello Clay,Thanks ... (Below threshold)

Hello Clay,

Thanks for the post. Very interesting. I had no intention of stepping on the toes of your faith (assuming you are in fact a Christian - you may just be a history nut, like myself). I can't say I understand your point totally - are you saying that the Romans later revised Mithraism to bring it more into line with Christianity?

In any case, it appears to me a debatable point whether Mithraism loaned Christianity some precepts. It doesn't invalidate the latter or validate the former in my eyes if they did - a lot of this stuff is just window dressing around the central topic and has nothing to do with whether the faith is factually accurate or useful in people's lives.

It does appear pretty clear, however, that Christianity borrowed several rituals from pagans, perhaps as a means to ease the transition of converts from paganism to Christianity.

And I'll stop deviating from the topic now...

It is possible that a supre... (Below threshold)
ed davis:

It is possible that a supreme creator communicated to multiple people througout the ages that "I AM THAT I AM" and "I AM COMING" to other people besides the Jews.

There are records of Japanese farmers responding to Christian missionaries in astonishment and happiness when hearing the one they have been looking for for centuries (based on their own astronomy / astrology passed down for genrations) had a name, lived, died and was ressurected. But I guess that would have been Hercules or some Egyptian half god half man, right? Then why weren't they Hercules missionaries or __________ (enter myth here)?

Or simply say those records are lies. Your faith is up to you.

Like it or not, militant islam is at war with THE ENTIRE WORLD. Whether atheist, hindu, muslim, buddhist, raelian, whatever, pick a fuckin' team already. And be loyal to it.




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