Hey, The Lights Are Flickering!

*** UPDATE ***


We’re alive and well. Juden was right. Strangest storm I’ve ever seen. Like King Lear on the heath but no rain for our parched ground. Winds from the south/southwest, dervishes swirling everywhere. And then it was gone…taking the light and water with it…

It’s 100+freakin’ Farenheit degrees right now…further update in a separate post. Blooger is being difficult…

* * * * * * * * * * * * *


If you don’t see your comments go up, or if your mail isn’t answered, here’s why:

SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS MOVING RAPIDLY

* until 1030 PM EDT

* at 917 PM EDT… Doppler radar indicated a line of severe
thunderstorms capable of producing destructive winds in excess of
70 mph. This line was moving east at 75 mph.

The lights are flickering here but the radar shows only a heat zone and the rain over the mountains, some miles away…

The Febrile State of our Union: Only Citizens May Vote

The political ferment in the U.S. emanating from Washington since Obama’s election grows more intense by the week. Just to name three issues with huge implications for our immediate and long-term future:

  • The ruling by the Supreme Court on ObamaCare has set the chattering classes to working overtime but that’s merely the latest move in a long, fierce battle. Without the passage of ObamaCare, there would be no Tea Party;
  • The Department of Justice’s secret program, “Fast and Furious”, with Eric Holder at the head of it. Blowback from that has been intense and will continue;
  • Again, the Department of Justice’s cynical and openly racialist Civil Rights division. Holder is clutching the keys to that one, too.

There are many sub-issues spinning off from these three concerns. We’ll be seeing them play out for years, but for the moment, look at the last one: the DoJ’s Civil Rights division’s racialist pursuits and the brake applied to them in Florida. We can only hope that the message from this particular ruling gets through to Attorney General Holder, currently playing at Disneyland…

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Federal Judge Rebuffs Justice Department

The Obama administration has encountered a setback in its attempt to stop Florida from removing non-citizens from the state’s voting rolls. On Tuesday, a federal judge rejected DOJ’s argument that the National Voter Registration Act bars the removal of non-citizens within 90 days of a federal election. Florida’s primary is on Aug. 14. U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle, a Clinton appointee, refused DOJ’s request for a temporary restraining order. Hinkle agreed that federal laws are designed to block states from removing eligible voters close to an election. But he said those rules are not designed to stop states from blocking voters who should have never been allowed to cast ballots in the first place, the Associated Press reported.

Florida Governor Rick Scott (Republican) has a response up on the Florida state website. On the home page the list of press releases includes this one, titled: Court: “Irreparable Harm” if Non-Citizens are Allowed to Vote:

Today’s ruling puts the burden on the federal government to provide Florida with access to the Department of Homeland Security’s citizenship database. We know from just a small sample that an alarming number of non-citizens are on the voter rolls and many of them have illegally voted in past elections. The federal government has the power to prevent such irreparable harm from continuing, and Florida once again implores them to grant access to the SAVE database.[emphases are mine]

In other words, the state of Florida has been “imploring” Napolitano for information that ought to have been available to them in the first place. And now a federal district judge has at least implied the state has a right to that information.

Given the lengths to which this administration has gone to get those non-citizens registered to vote in the first place (we’ll skip the dead voters for the moment), this is a welcome limit placed by a federal judge on their flouting of the U.S. Constitution. Instead, they relied on their own methods, known as “the Chicago Way”. All that muscle in aid of hanging onto power by whatever means necessary is now wasted; Florida may yet have a valid election.

But you do see the fly in the ointment here, right? The next move will be up to the Department of Homeland Security. If Janet Napolitano were not equally a Holderian slippery rogue cabinet member, the SAVE citizenship database would long ago have been turned over to Florida. But if she holds onto it long enough, dancing through the same choreographed steps of that stonewalling dance Holder has used, there is a good chance Florida will never gain its already legal access to information stored in Washington. Or not gain it in time for the primaries in August or the elections in November.

That’s why the constitutional concept of federalism was put in place to begin with: to limit the powers of the central government. And that’s what the cultural Marxists are fighting to obliterate. The erosion of those original concepts of limited government has been inexorable and do not begin with Obama. He has simply been the most brazen in recent memory.

Where in our history would we find the first beginnings of federal eruption? The Whiskey Rebellion? Lincoln’s suspension of habeas corpus during the Civil War? The shoe-in-the-door start of federal taxation in 1913?

We have many fine historians among our readers. I hope some of you will step forward with your own findings on the usurpation of states’ rights as defined by our 10th Amendment. However, I have one proviso: to leave the swamp of Civil War contentions out of it. We are still suffering from that war and the arguments will never, ever be settled this side of the River Styx. In fact, it’s probably being hotly argued over on the other shore even now.

The other many erosions since Reconstruction ended are plentiful enough to demonstrate the length and breadth and depth of the ongoing attempts to limit freedoms via federal overreach. Enough regulation and oversight to ham shackle us all.

Obama’s reign in the Oval Office, with his many executive directives aimed at by-passing the other two separate powers- juridicial and congressional – is creating ferment indeed.

Washington D.C. was erected smack dab on a swamp. Never has that environment seemed more suited to what is transpiring there right now.

Finally, Attorney General Holder Is Reined In

He has been charged with contempt of Congress, a first in American history.

The following is part of a signed analysis from the Washington Times of the doings on the floor of the house yesterday:

The House on Thursday cited Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. for contempt of Congress in a vote weighted with political significance — though it does little to break the stalemate over his decision to withhold documents over the Justice Department’s actions in a botched gun-walking operation.

The House voted 255-67 to hold him in criminal contempt in a vote that amounted to a political spanking for Mr. Holder and President Obama, underscored by the 17 Democrats who joined the GOP.

Most Democrats walked out of the vote in a protest led by the Congressional Black Caucus.

It was partisan politics, that walk-out. Great theater but not reality. I suspect the 17 who stayed to vote for censure will use their vote to demonstrate their bona fides back home during re-election time.

It marks the first time an attorney general has been held in contempt by a chamber of Congress.

“We’ve shown more than enough good faith, but the White House has chosen to invoke executive privilege. That leaves us no other options,” said House Speaker John A. Boehner. “The only recourse left for the House is to continue seeking the truth and to hold attorney general in contempt of Congress.”

Speaking in New Orleans after the vote, Mr. Holder called it “misguided and political” and said he ended the gun-walking program once he learned of it — though that was after guns involved were found at the site of a shootout that left a Border Patrol agent dead.

Mr. Holder said he thought Republicans were retaliating against him because he’s blocked voter-identification laws in Republican states, and he repeatedly chided the GOP for even making the attempt

Yep, there’s The Narrative again. Racist white folks trying to get us good people. Yawn. This lie is sooo old it has great-grandchildren by now.

[…]

At issue is the oversight committee’s investigation into Fast and Furious, an operation intended to track sales of U.S. guns and watch the guns be shipped across the border to a Mexican drug cartel. But the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) lost track of the roughly 2,000 weapons after they were sold.

Some of the guns eventually began showing up at crime scenes, including two that were recovered at the site of a 2010 Arizona shootout that left Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry dead.

Mr. Holder shut down the operation, but his efforts to clean up after it have come under scrutiny. The Justice Department initially told Congress that it never knowingly lost track of guns. After whistleblowers [see book below, by J. Christian Adams] made clear that the guns had been lost, Mr. Holder retracted that claim some 10 months later.

The Justice Department turned over documents about the gunwalking operation, but has refused to turn over documents about how it handled the false information it provided to Congress.

That emphasis is mine. It’s important to note this because that’s the foundation of the Congressional contempt charge passed against Holder yesterday.

Last week, Mr. Obama asserted executive privilege, arguing that those documents are protected by precedent that governs internal deliberations.

Democrats said they aren’t defending the gunwalking operation, but that the committee should leave Mr. Holder alone.

Republicans said they have issued a valid subpoena and that Mr. Holder is stonewalling. They said they are trying to hold the administration accountable and to try to get answers for the Terry family.

Perhaps they ought to consider also trying “to get answers” for the Mexican families whose sons were killed? Justice should extend up to and include the boundaries of the sovereign nation we so cavalierly invaded with this clever plan.

My favorite quote?

“Democrats said they aren’t defending the gunwalking operation, but that the committee should leave Mr. Holder alone.”

So a reasonable person could assume these Democrats know that what the Attorney General did was illegal, but those mean Republicans should quit picking on him just because…because why? They don’t say. Oh, right. Because he’s black, of course. I’d give you the links for those charges but why give such scurrilous lies an implied validity by linking them here. Ummm…try checking our good friend, Charles Johnson. I’ll bet he’s quoting The Narrative like crazy right now.

Holder’s position as head of the Justice Department is sensitive and crucial. Unfortunately, he is much like his president; they both play racialist politics while denying they are doing so.

Perhaps Holder thought he was immune to the rules that have governed past Attorneys General? He certainly has made new, racialist-based rulings — e. g., cancelling the prosecution of members of the New Black Panther Party for their threatening behavior at a voting place in the 2008 election. It’s right on the tape, very clearly it’s intimidation of voters in the last election. But Holder is a professional Grievance Monger; he has turned the Justice Department into Grievance Central and Voter Fraud Inc. So no penalties for these thugs, and a big push against those who fight fraudulent votes.

For those who want to read a full, though saddened, account of Holder’s deportment during his tenure as head of the Justice Department, this book by former DoJ lawyer, J. Christian Adams will serve:

Injustice: Exposing the Racial Agenda of the Obama Justice Department

I read Mr. Adams’ book some months ago and found it chilling. I like to read the comment sections on Amazon. For this one, I grabbed the first review and pasted it here. It wasn’t until I read it just now that I realized how hard it is to amend The Narrative. A young black attorney had to push against her presumptions to read “Injustice”, but she did it:

I expected a biased viewpoint that would suggest the experience of a caucasian man who used to live in South Carolina or a disgruntled former DOJ employee, but Adams admirably succeeds in presenting a genuinely objective and race-blind narrative free of any bias and retaliatory motive. As a minority female attorney, I found Adams’ account refreshingly honest. His viewpoint speaks from the perspective of an American without regard to race, and an attorney committed to upholding the Constitution and the principles of our judicial system. Adams summoned significant courage in coming forward to share the truth of what he has witnessed in the Justice Department’s Voting Rights division, despite his obvious reluctance to disparage an institution he genuinely respects and whose principles he clearly takes to heart. The compassionate tone of this book actually gave me faith that there are decent, principled government employees who are willing to make personal sacrifices in an effort to help make America a better place for future generations by letting the truth be heard.

This book provides an in-depth and factually accurate account of not only the history of civil rights in America, but the history of voting in America—a lesson that resonates even more fervently today as many countries around the world struggle to achieve fair and open elections. I would never have been aware of the voting abuses that occur on our own soil, and not in some distant infant democracy.

To which I can only add, “Amen”.

Attorney General Holder deserves censure and removal but by the time they get around to that, it may well be moot as a new administration comes to town.

And Holder? Just to show “it don’t confront me none” (as they say around here), he went to Disneyland. Given the unreality in which the current administration dwells, Holder’s fun trip sounds might like a busman’s holiday.

Indisposed

I’d planned to surprise the Baron by putting up several posts today, but the Karma Dude had other ideas. Whadda joker he is…

In addition to living sans air conditioning in this wilting 96 F degree heat (supposed to be 100 tomorrow and for many days running), plus a non-working webmail page for hours (spam storm perhaps?), the final straw was the sudden onset of a full-blown and severe gastric attack. I don’t know what causes them, but the more severe ones leave me feeling drained for a right good while. They come, they go – assisted out the door by acid blockers and Bentyl and Pepto-Bismol. Perhaps my old h. pylori ulcer has returned? It was an awful six hours but it’s over. As Isaak Dinesen said, there are only three ways we really know happiness and one of them is the euphoria that arrives when pain recedes. Ah, yes, definitely an animal pleasure.

At any rate, I apologize for the silence. I had several things in the hopper about Germany and Norway, but the news in the U.S. is big today, at least as far as Americans are concerned.

Definitely nothing to do with foreign policy – unless you count the fact that our government failed to tell the sovereign nation of Mexico about our swell plan to run thousands of guns down there in an on-going effort to break out with gun control laws here. We have only to look at Chicago, where owning guns isn’t legal to know the consequences of that scheme.

I will deal with that tomorrow, health willing and electricity running. I say that because we were without any power for some houts on Wednesday. Never did find out why but I suspect these new, consumer-unfriendly ‘sustainable’ fuels are going to make our connectivity less reliable. Oh well, we can’t say Obama didn’t warn us he was determined to kill fossil fuels. A foolish man whose bright ideas are making life worse for us all. Though not for him, of course.

Meanwhile, thanks for your patience.

Oh, wait. Tomorrow is already here. Sharp pain does that – one loses track in the transitions. So that is amended: I will deal with our Attorney General later on today.

Stay cool, y’all.

The Open Road

Haughty high horse with big wheelsI’ll be away from my desk for the next few days. The news feed will be suspended while I’m gone, and resume upon my return.

Dymphna will be minding the store in the meantime. Please be mild and kind one to another in my absence — or else!

And stock up on ice — I hear it’s going to be hot…

Gates of Vienna News Feed 6/27/2012

Gates of Vienna News Feed 6/27/2012Ahmed Shafiq, the last Egyptian prime minister to serve under Hosni Mubarak — and recently defeated by Mohammed Morsi in the presidential election — has left Egypt for Abu Dhabi along with his entire family. Mubarak’s former head of intelligence has also moved his whole family to Abu Dhabi.

Also in Abu Dhabi, a British man who was convicted of selling less than an ounce of pot to an undercover agent has been sentenced to death.

In financial news, despite its attempt to obtain financial help from Russia, Cyprus has decided to accept a full bailout from the IMF.

To see the headlines and the articles, open the full news post.

Thanks to Fjordman, Insubria, JD, JP, McR, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Commenters are advised to leave their comments at this post (rather than with the news articles) so that they are more easily accessible.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

Helga’s Bar and Brokerage *BOOM*

Monopoly banker


We have no idea where this originated. It arrived in our email sans a URL. If our readers have any information on its pedigree, we’d be glad to update this witty (and somewhat alarming)…allegory, perhaps? Whatever category you choose for the tale, certainly it is the most succinct and accessible explanation for the meltdown – oops, mixing metaphors again. But then, no one can tell us if the future is going to be Chinese water torture-type erosion (yeah, waaaycist too) or a financial Armageddon.

The finance boys were smart enough to get us here but they didn’t have a Plan B because they didn’t have to.

Thus, we present for your entertainment and edification,

A Dummies’ Guide to What Went Wrong in Greece and Therefore, in Europe

Helga is the proprietor of a taverna in Greece. She realizes that virtually all of her customers are unemployed Greek alcoholics and as such, can no longer afford to patronize her bar. To solve this problem she comes up with a new marketing plan that allows her customers to drink now, but pay later.
Helga keeps track of the drinks consumed on a ledger (thereby granting the customers’ “loans”).

Word soon gets around about Helga’s “drink now, pay later” marketing strategy and as a result, increasing numbers of customers flood into Helga’s bar. Soon she has the largest sales volume (but no actual money) for any bar in town.

By providing her customers freedom from immediate payment demands Helga gets no resistance or complaint when, at regular intervals, she substantially increases her prices for wine and beer – the most commonly consumed beverages.

Consequently, Helga’s gross sales volumes and paper profits increase massively. A young and dynamic vice-president at the local bank recognises that these customer debts constitute valuable future assets and increases Helga’s borrowing limit. He sees no reason for any undue concern, since he has the debts of the unemployed alcoholics as collateral…

He is rewarded with a six figure bonus for being a clever little banker.
At the bank’s corporate headquarters in Athens, expert traders figure a way to make huge commissions, and transform these customer loans into DRINKBONDS. These “securities” are then bundled and traded on international securities markets in Madrid, Dublin, Rome and Berlin.

Naive investors who buy into these DRINKBONDS don’t really understand that the securities being sold to them as “AA Secured Bonds” are really debts of unemployed alcoholics. Nevertheless, the bond prices continuously climb and the securities soon become the hottest-selling items for some of the leading brokerage houses across Europe including London.

The traders all receive a six figure bonus.

One day, even though the bond prices are still climbing, a risk manager at the original local bank in Greece decides that the time has come to demand some kind of payment on the debts incurred by the drinkers at Helga’s bar. He therefore informs Helga. Helga is in turn then obliged to demand payment from her alcoholic patrons but, being unemployed alcoholics, they cannot pay back their drinking debts. Since Helga cannot fulfill her loan obligations to her local bank she is forced into bankruptcy. The bar closes and Helga’s 11 employees lose their jobs.

Overnight, DRINKBOND prices drop by 90%. The collapsed bond asset value destroys the bank’s liquidity and prevents it from issuing new loans, thus freezing credit and economic activity in the community. This contagion rapidly spreads upwards to the parent bank in Athens and the bank collapses.
These local and national financiers of Helga’s bar had granted her generous payment extensions and had invested their firms’ pension funds in the DRINKBOND securities. They find they are now faced with having to write off her bad debt a losing over 90% of the presumed value of the bonds. Her wine supplier also claims bankruptcy, closing the doors on a family business that had endured for three generations; her beer supplier is taken over by a competitor, who immediately closes the local brewery and lays off 150 workers.

Fortunately though, the bank, the brokerage houses and their respective executives are saved and bailed out by a multibillion Euro no-strings attached cash infusion from the government in Berlin.

All these bankers and brokers involved in the “Rescue Plan “receive a six figure bonus.

The funds required for this bailout are obtained by new taxes levied on employed, middle-class, non-drinkers who’ve never been in Helga’s bar. Most of them don’t even live in Greece.

Now do you understand?

Fjordman: The Price of Immigration

Fjordman


Fjordman’s latest essay has been published at FrontPage Mag. Some excerpts are below:

In his 2008 book Et Delt Folk (“A Nation Divided”), The Danish historian and writer Morten Uhrskov Jensen carefully went through publicly available sources. He demonstrated that the opening up of his country for mass immigration was arranged by just part of the population, sometimes in the face of considerable popular opposition.

Roughly speaking, those representing the political and media establishment and the upper classes were in favor of open borders, whereas those from the lower classes were often opposed. This divide is viewed by those from the upper segments of society as caused mainly by racism, prejudice, ignorance and xenophobia.

Since the educated classes enjoyed a virtual hegemony over public debate, they were able to define all opposition as hate and intolerance, exemplified by people such as Pia Kjærsgaard of the Danish People’s Party. The well-to-do themselves rarely lived in areas with many immigrants and could afford to move, at least for a while, if that was needed. They focused on the abstract and allegedly humanitarian aspects of mass migration.

For poorer people, immigration was a concrete issue, as immigrants moved into their neighborhoods and went to school with their children. To put it bluntly, for those with money, globalization initially meant that they could travel on holidays to exotic lands and treat the world as their playground. For those who were less well off, it meant that the entire world suddenly moved into their street and took over their children’s local playground.


When the Titanic during her maiden voyage across the Atlantic Ocean struck an iceberg just before midnight on 14 April 1912, the first people who could see the water pouring in were the third-class passengers who happened to be situated closest to the waterline. Meanwhile, the richest passengers at the top were drinking fine cognac long after the ship had started sinking. They didn’t realize what was going on for quite some time, because they were further removed from the physical problem. The poor passengers still unfortunately suffered the highest fatality rates, because the wealthy benefitted from having privileged access to the lifeboats.

We see the same phenomenon on display today, on a much larger scale. Having Islamophobia in Europe today is just as rational as having icebergophobia on board the Titanic in 1912.

Uhrskov Jensen in 2012 published another book, Indvandringens Pris (“The Price of Immigration”) about how much money non-European mass immigration costs his native Denmark. His conclusion is that this cost is great in terms of welfare payments and rising crime combined with declining efficiency and technological innovation.

He shows through carefully researched statistics that only certain Asian immigrants are able to keep up with northern Europeans in the educational system. A few skilled immigrants from India or elsewhere can compete, but mainly those from East Asia: Japanese, Koreans, Chinese, and to some extent Vietnamese. All other non-Western immigrants show lower levels of skill and competence than Europeans, many of them a lot lower.

Read the rest at FrontPage Mag.



For a complete archive of Fjordman’s writings, see the multi-index listing in the Fjordman Files.

Pulling the Plug on Airport “Safety”

Cultural Enrichment News


Under normal circumstances I would have left this story from The New York Post for the news feed. However, interested readers should take a look at the text and note the name of the TSA employee whose job skills do so much to enrich the security of the American homeland.

JFK is not the only airport on which the benefits of cultural enrichment have been so amply bestowed. Do a little “profiling” of TSA employees the next time you pass through Dulles, Philly, Logan, or any number of other major international airports. And if you think it’s bad here, try flying into Heathrow.

Unplugged Metal Detector Triggers JFK Chaos

These fools are keeping us safe?!?

The TSA’s bungling reached a new low yesterday when a JFK Airport terminal had to be evacuated and hundreds of passengers marched back through security screening all because one dimwitted agent failed to realize his metal detector had been unplugged, sources told The Post.

The stunning error led to hours of delays, two planes called back from the runway and infinite frustration for furious passengers.

“The truth is, this is the failure of the most basic level of diligence,” a law-enforcement source said.

“How can you expect the public to feel confident of the mission of the TSA if they don’t even know if the lights are turned on?”

The chaos at Terminal 7 was caused by screener Alija Abdul Majed, who had manned Lane No. 1 during the morning shift with no idea his metal detector had no juice, sources said.

Amazingly, he failed to realize that alert lights never flashed once as streams of passengers filed through the dead detector, the sources said.

Majed was so clueless that he couldn’t even tell police how long the machine had been shut off or how it happened, the sources said. “It was simply an unplugged machine — the TSA doing its best,” another source said.


Higher-ups at the Transportation Security Administration finally discovered the security boondoggle at 9:44 a.m. — leaving the Port Authority with no choice but to call for a complete evacuation of the international terminal that is home to British Airways, Cathay Pacific, United Airlines and others.

The extraordinary measure meant that two jumbo jets — including a San Francisco-bound United flight — had to return to the gate so passengers could be rescreened at a metal detector that was actually turned on.

The TSA would not confirm or deny that its detector had been unplugged, releasing a statement saying only that a metal detector suffered a “malfunction.”…



For a complete listing of previous enrichment news, see The Cultural Enrichment Archives.

Hat tip: McR.

Gates of Vienna News Feed 6/26/2012

Gates of Vienna News Feed 6/26/2012Three police officers were shot to death in Mexico City’s main airport. The victims had been in the process of attempting to arrest two other police officers, who were alleged to be involved in cocaine trafficking. The killers escaped, and the authorities are searching for them.

In other news, Christian and Muslim groups in Nigeria have come together in an interfaith initiative to reach out to each other’s followers and bring an end to sectarian violence. It is hoped that the program will eventually extend to joint preaching in churches and mosques.

To see the headlines and the articles, open the full news post.

Thanks to Fjordman, JP, Nilk, Seneca III, Steen, The Observer, TV, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Commenters are advised to leave their comments at this post (rather than with the news articles) so that they are more easily accessible.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

On the Power of Immigrants and the Upcoming Revolts

“When the euro collapses, the social service system for immigrants will fall apart. Then the old ethnic, religious, national and other prejudices will burst out so vividly that each population group will think first and foremost of itself.”

In an interview with Kopp Online, the German author and journalist Udo Ulfkotte discusses the grim times that lie ahead for Germany and the rest of Europe.

Many thanks to JLH and Hermes, who undertook the translation of this interview as a joint effort:

Ulfkotte: On the power of immigrants and the upcoming revolts

The journalist and writer Udo Ulfkotte was clearly right to have feared for years upcoming revolts between natives and immigrants refusing to integrate, and of criminal immigrants in Germany and Europe.

Dangerous clashes, in which the strength of the immigrants becomes more and more blatant, are on the rise. Meanwhile their numerous families and clans issue unscrupulous and open threats against state organs, journalists and victims. Is the situation in Germany already hopeless? An interview with Udo Ulfkotte.

Kopp:   Mr. Ulfkotte, a recent case in North Germany is currently driving many people mad: three dangerous immigrant criminals attacked, beat and robbed a pensioner. However, the old man shot one of the criminals dead in self-defense. Then the numerous family members of the dead criminal put pressure on the government to prosecute the pensioner for manslaughter. The state attorney’s office from the town of Stade really has prosecuted him, reversing its original decision. How influential are these populous immigrant families, and where do they get their strength from?
Ulfkotte:   This is not the only case. Some weeks earlier the whole of Berlin trembled because the immigrant Youssef El-A. was stabbed, also in self-defense. It was the biggest Islamic funeral Berlin has ever seen. And thousands of demonstrators demanded that victims of crimes who act in self-defense be imprisoned. The criminal was turned into a hero. Same happened in Sittensen. And the extended family always stands behind the criminals. In cities such as Bremen, journalists and police have been extorted for years to pay protection money for families such as that of the “Miris”. In Essen and other cities of the Ruhr, police were no longer allowed to intervene when these families offered children for sex in the backrooms of cultural associations. One was not allowed to talk about that. It’s this damned political correctness which has brought all of this on us.
Kopp:   Journalists were also threatened in Uelzen in March while reporting about a process involving immigrants, as were many from Die Welt, Tagesspiegel and the Frankfurter Rundschau, who had to endure massive threats from Salafists in April because of having reported critically on the Koran-distribution campaign. What has suddenly happened here? Does it not sounds like extortion? And what do the judicial organs do to counteract this?
Ulfkotte:   What should they do? They do nothing. They fear these groups. They have been giving way to them for years just like at the anti-authoritarian education. Always giving in to them. And now they are surprised that the grown-up pupils make fools of them. They laugh at us, and nothing more.
Kopp:   Is this perhaps a reason why, in virtually all MSM reports on murder and killing committed by immigrants, for years we have not read nor heard names and countries of origin? Is this the fear of the journalists of being put under pressure? Or are these politically correct requirements from Berlin?
Ulfkotte:   Again, it is this damned political correctness. Every year in Germany Immigrants commit more than 16,000 crimes involving physical injury. And what do we do? We constantly ask ourselves whether this is the product of their bad social situation, and we open our wallets (to give more money for integration). We pay the criminals. And we protect them. Yes, we journalists, politicians and judges have to protect the criminals. We no longer know how to describe the criminal groups, in order not to speak clearly. Police reports sometimes describe gypsies as “itinerant Europeans”, sometimes as “a mobile ethnic minority”, or “errant travelers”, “Sinti and Roma”, or simply “Bulgarians”, or “Romanians”, but never “Gypsies”. This is the somehow funny politically correct way.
Kopp:   Has the so-called “looking away when it comes to immigrants” reinforced itself in the criminal justice system, or is there a visible rethinking in the settled practices of the judges?
Ulfkotte:   A rethinking? I do not see that. Neither the judge Kirsten Heisig in Berlin nor Thilo Sarrazin have had any effect. Now we have sentences in which immigrants who have deviously obtained welfare payments can retain the money for themselves, because for them (what they have done) is an alleged cultural peculiarity. And we have sentences in which immigrant pedophiles go away without being punished because what they do is to be seen as something cultural. We are open to everything and strict against nothing.
Kopp:   Which are the typical and most common criminal acts of immigrants and why do they commit them far more frequently than Europeans?
Ulfkotte:   To this type belong all crimes involving brutal force. And of course rapes. Alice Schwarzer reported that in Koelln more than 70% of rapists are Turks. Of course, this has something to do with culture. And even more with respect. They show not even the slightest shade of respect towards us. We must give them welfare payments, asylum, housing, clothes, warm meals and leisure activities, but we should not expect any reciprocity from them. We are seen by immigrants as not deserving all this, as the ones to be ripped off and exploited.
Kopp:   What is the state of morale of the police forces, in view of the continuously escalating attacks against police officers when, as not long ago happened in Berlin, a police car with agents inside is attacked at a traffic lamp with stones and set on fire?
Ulfkotte:   All agents I know are fed up with this. The gas for the vehicles is rationed and the number of police units is being reduced. They have to endure insults and aggression every single day. And oh! they dare raise their voices, and immediately they have to undergo a disciplinary proceeding. For many young migrants police are the symbol of a society they hate and reject.
Kopp:   Are migrant strongholds, and not only in big cities, to be called lost zones, so-called no-go areas?
Ulfkotte:   Yes, the UN has already assessed this status for many European conurbations. This is not only a German phenomenon. In Brussels, the capital of the European Union, where more than a third of the population is Muslim and more than half of the pupils in the schools come from eastern countries, Islam is not allowed to be criticized. An Islamic ghetto stands all around the European (EU) District. It’s interesting that the European parliament is the only one in the world which has to operate a police station, where the delegates and their colleagues can report assaults against them. Of course, they have to go through the ghettos and are more and more frequently robbed. There are two possibilities: to build walls around the district or to clean it up. Things cannot go on like this for long. And this is not exclusive to Brussels. What about Duisburg-Marxloh? Politicians presented it to us as a model of integration. And now police patrols go there in fear.
Kopp:   Gang rapes committed by immigrants against non-Muslims have become more common in the last two to three years, specially in the United Kingdom. While the British MSM are not able to report about the real identity of the perpetrators, German “quality media” seems to show an even stronger censorship. Are there similar precedents in Germany about the way jurisprudence looks in such cases?
Ulfkotte:   I know many cases like that, but none in which the perpetrator would have got more that a suspended sentence. But as already said, we know what the situation is, and it was the same in UK. The gang rapes were known by the police as far back as 2002, I repeat, as far back as 2002. But nobody from the police wanted to help the raped white children, because that was of course not politically correct. Nowadays the majority of the Brits feel shame for having looked away in such a degree. We are now where the Brits were ten years ago concerning this issue.


Kopp:   Have you and your family already been threatened?
Ulfkotte:   I have a separate mail address for death threats, which forwards directly to state security. A while ago it was pretty fierce. But these death threats no longer interest me. There are many other people like me who regularly receive, or have received this kind of thing. I have been much occupied with who the perpetrators are. When they could be uncovered, they were imbeciles who could not be brought to justice because of their low IQ. There was even an easterner in Freiburg who was making comprehensible and rather brutal death threats to Freiburg citizens. He was fined €100. At any rate, no one has been convicted for a long time.
Kopp:   Where do you find the courage to report on such unpleasant annoyances?
Ulfkotte:   It gives me strength. Today, it builds me up, because then I can prepare for developments. And that is good. I have moved out of a heavily populated area and made preparations so that it will not hit my family as brutally as those who are still naïvely cheering on the Easterners.
Kopp:   Do you believe that people in this country will still wake up and want to change things, or has that train already left the station, as for instance in Belgium, where the Muslims by their numbers will soon be in charge?
Ulfkotte:   People will not wake up until the usual care systems break down. As long as there is still total care financed by debt, the majority will not wake up. I can understand that. No one is responsible for himself anymore. But I look at all this optimistically. Previously, I thought that sometime there would be a takeover by the Muslims. I was wrong. When the euro collapses, the social service system for immigrants will fall apart. Then the old ethnic, religious, national and other prejudices will burst out so vividly that each population group will think first and foremost of itself. The optimistic assumption is that then many Muslims will go home of their own accord. Turkish president Erdogan not long ago told Armenian guest-workers in Turkey that they were no longer needed and would be deported at anytime. What Erdogan is saying in Turkey will certainly be demanded of the Turks here by German ethnic groups. At least, when the whole social security system here starts falling apart piece by piece.
Kopp:   In your recent book , Give us Back our D-Mark!, you warn of unrest similar to civil war in the event the euro crashes. How do you come to this conclusion?
Ulfkotte:   In recent decades, in German-speaking territory, we have used money to calm all the factors contributing to unrest. Money we have stolen from our yet-to-be-born children. If the euro collapses country by country, you have to be really naïve to think this will happen without tension. When the citizens’ claims on pensions dissolve because money is just gone, when the life insurance policies become wobbly, when savings is threatened — then what do the citizens do? Rejoice? Certainly not. We can see that in Greece. And they regularly receive billions from us. We are financing a rescue package for everyone. We just have nothing for ourselves.
Kopp:   How are European member states, including Germany, preparing for such unrest? Are there special units being formed for that?
Ulfkotte:   There is the Eurogendfor, which is based in Vicenza, Italy. It is intended to knock down unrest in all EU states. Our preparations in Germany are pretty idiotic. We are increasing surveillance immensely and collecting data on people who in case of unrest will have a travel ban placed on them. There are many and varied plans. At the same time, we are stupidly emasculating the police, instituting a police reform in Baden-Württemberg and closing more than half of the garrisons. That is to save personnel. Any school kid can tell what that means in a crisis. Nothing works any more. You can’t count on the police. More and more often nowadays, police must retreat when youth gangs appear. In Greece, the youth gangs are arming themselves with Kalashnikovs. Anyone who believes it to be different here no doubt still believes in the Easter Bunny.
Kopp:   How can citizens protect themselves or how can they prepare appropriately?
Ulfkotte:   Everyone must decide that himself. Years ago, I traded my small, very expensive place in Taurus for a plot of land in a rural area and I am provisioning it thoroughly myself. I am not depending on the state, I depend on friends and acquaintances. But everyone must figure that out for himself.
Kopp:   What signs should we look out for, and when do you expect a euro crash?
Ulfkotte:   When Greece falls, there will be a domino effect. After that will come countries like Spain. And then the money from the rescue packages will be burned through. Our politicians’ gamble will be over.
Kopp:   What currency will we have in Germany after the euro crash?
Ulfkotte:   A national currency, whatever it is called. Most Germans do not want the euro and want the D-Mark back.
Kopp:   How can a person safeguard his money?
Ulfkotte:   That depends on how much you have and how long you want to preserve that value. If I want to leave my children something, stands of trees, pond systems and arable land are better than a savings account. We are not talking about return on income but pure retention of value, where there is no complete loss. And right now I am happy about the low gold rate. If you don’t have to sell gold in the next few years, then gold is certainly more to be recommended than Greek or Spanish bonds.
Kopp:   What is your opinion of the next five years in Germany?
Ulfkotte:   To be cautious, let us say ten years. Many social services will no longer exist. We will be working off other countries’ debts. In fact, into our old age. There will be an extreme division of society into great poverty and great wealth — as has long been the case in the USA. The welfare state can no longer be financed. And many who believe today that they are well-to-do because they annually receive a report from an insurance plan or a bank with attractive numbers will have lost everything.
Kopp:   How do you gauge the mood of the people in the country? What is the basic tenor of the messages you get about your articles and books?
Ulfkotte:   I am very conflicted. Half of the people agree with me and half think it is all nonsense. Surprisingly, there is nothing in between. So there are people who are calmly preparing for a possible development and others who do not. I am sure that those who have prepared have, at any rate, not made a mistake,
Kopp:   Mr. Ulfkotte, thank you for the interview.

Book titles:

  • Caution, Civil War!
    What has been fomenting for a long time will finally become rage
  • Give Us Back Our D-Mark!
    Five experts answer the most important questions about the coming national bankruptcy
  • My Field, My Woods, My Pond
    Handbook on traditional provision for crises

“The Pacific”: A Regrettable Lack of Common Virtues

After a long hiatus, Apollon Zamp returns with guest-essay reviewing the television series “The Pacific”. In the wake of last night’s discussion of “Bomber” Harris, this post provides a look at the other major theater in World War Two — and the historical revisionism concerning it that has now become dominant in popular culture.

The Pacific


The Pacific: A Regrettable Lack of Common Virtues
by Apollon Zamp

I was fourteen years old when I saw Saving Private Ryan (against the express wishes of my parents). Having long been fascinated by World War Two history — I was perhaps the only twelve-year-old with a subscription to WWII Magazine — I was amazed by what Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg had managed to create. The visceral and horrific nature of war was plainly evident — as were the bonds that form between men who fight alongside each other, and the pain they share and struggle to repress when their buddies get wounded or killed. Spielberg was trying as hard as possible to re-create the realities of war, and many veterans have attested to his success in doing so.

The success of the film was part and parcel of a greater re-awakening of Americans’ interest in their country’s part in World War Two. Tom Brokaw’s The Greatest Generation and a slew of Second World War-themed video games bear witness to this. (Tycho Brahe, author of the gaming webcomic Penny Arcade, once remarked that “Normandy Beach is the new Hoth,” which indicates the intensity of the cult-like status that World War Two-themed material had gained.)

Spielberg and Hanks continued where they had left off with Saving Private Ryan with the HBO miniseries Band of Brothers. The series ties in briefly with Ryan — we see paratroopers from the 101st Airborne Division throughout the film, and the titular James Francis Ryan is himself a private in Baker Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment — one of the three regiments that formed the backbone of the 101st. However, whereas Ryan focused on the Normandy invasion as a whole — featuring troops from the 29th Infantry Division, the 2nd Rangers, and the 101st Airborne — Band of Brothers focused on one company — E (“Easy”) Company, 506th PIR, 101st Airborne — for the duration of the war.

One of the things that really stood out about Band of Brothers was the chemistry among the cast. This was not an accident, nor a fluke. Dale Dye, a retired Marine Corps officer, provides technical support for military movies, and is known for his adherence to realism and realistic portrayals of fighting men. He provided the technical direction for Ryan, during which he put the actors involved through a miniature two-week “boot camp.” Part of his method was to exclude Matt Damon, who played Ryan, from the training, thus creating a real element to the other characters’ dislike of Ryan which came through on the screen.

Dye’s methods were similarly applied to Band of Brothers. He put the men who were going to portray actual veterans (in some cases, veterans who were still alive) through a truncated version of parachute infantry school, complete with physical training, battlefield exercises, and simulated indoor jump exercises similar to what current airborne infantry troops go through during training. A chemistry naturally developed among the actors involved — a chemistry that was no doubt enhanced by Dye’s farewell speech at the end of the training period, reminding the men who were going to serve as the avatars of E/506th PIR that they had a responsibility and a privilege to represent those who had fought their way across Europe between June 1944 and May 1945.

This chemistry shone through for the entirety of the series, both in positive senses — the obvious camaraderie and brotherly devotion the men had for each other — as well as the negative — for example, the scenes that take place in Bastogne, which showed the hardships endured as young men barely out of their twenties watched each other get maimed, killed, or suffer nervous breakdowns. The skilled production, beautiful cinematography, and the almost kinetic spark of shared energy among the actors involved combined to make this an excellent series. To top it all off, the producers never aired any of the episodes until the veterans from Easy Company — who served as valuable sources of firsthand information — had watched and approved the content as historically accurate.

All of this served as a rather dramatic backdrop for The Pacific, which aired nine years after Band of Brothers. Once again, Hanks and Spielberg had partnered up, with Dale Dye once again providing technical direction, except this time they were covering a part of the war that had not been featured in either Ryan or Band of Brothers. The Pacific Theater — which, arguably, was a more far-flung and confusing theater than the European one — until that point had only been explored by mind- and posterior-numbing exercises in navel-gazing such as The Thin Red Line. Many people, myself included, couldn’t wait to see the Hanks/Spielberg/Dye take on the Pacific theater, complete with the same rich cinematography and sparkling character performances that their earlier works had showcased.

And then I watched it.

To call The Pacific disappointing is an understatement. It falls short on many levels, so I’m only going to consider three of them — firstly, considered on its own merits as a narrative; secondly, how it compares to Band of Brothers and Ryan in terms of characterization; and finally, the attitudes of the producers, most notably Tom Hanks.

The Pacific is riddled with narrative incoherencies and flaws throughout. First of all, none of the main characters are in the same unit. They’re all Marines, but Robert Leckie is in the 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, while Eugene Sledge is in the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines. John Basilone, the third protagonist, serves with the 1st Battalion, 7th Marines for part of the series, and the 1st Battalion, 27th Marines for the latter part of the series. The episodes are arranged haphazardly and give the impression that someone dropped a lot of cut film on the floor and put it back together in a hasty fashion.

In one episode, Eugene Sledge appears for a grand total of thirty seconds or so, getting yelled at by his drill instructor. Why was this scene necessary? More to the point, why is that one of the few scenes that shows the rigors of Marine boot camp? There are things the audience knows that it needs to see as well. We know that Marines were well-trained and hardened prior to being shipped out to face the horrors of jungle combat, but we need to see their development from callow, eager youth to seasoned, trained, soldiers. Instead, for instance, we see Leckie telling his apparent love interest, Vera, that he’s joining the Marines. We see him exchanging an awkward farewell with his distant father, and then we see him on a troop transport, getting ready to land on Guadalcanal. (As an aside, this scene features a possible runner-up for the worst pre-combat briefing ever, which I reproduce in its awful entirety:

“Forget all the horse**** you’ve heard about the Japs. They’ve had their turn. Now it’s our turn. The treacherous bastards may have started the war, but I promise you, we will finish it. Those slant-eyed monkeys want to use that **** island and its airfield to kill us! We’ll yank the surviving Japs out of their ****-filled holes by their yellow balls! They’ll go round-eyed when the first American planes land at their airfield! Heads down in the boats. Hit the beach. Keep moving to your rendezvous points and primary objectives. When you see the Japs, kill ’em all!” )

I’m accustomed to this kind of swill from exploitation artists like Stone and Tarantino, but Spielberg and Hanks are two people from whom I expect better. Band of Brothers had many examples of officers treating their men like intelligent human beings who needed to have information at their disposal — terrain, estimates of enemy forces, tactics upon arrival and a set of goals to complete their mission, etc. This post-modernist irony-laden speech has none of that — only a sneering contempt for what it considers to be the prevailing attitude of the typical Marine officer. Granted, the average American felt more antipathy towards the Japanese, and did indulge in more racial slurs towards them (as opposed to the Germans, with whom many Anglo-Saxon Americans shared a common heritage anyway), but my intelligence as a viewer felt sorely insulted by this travesty of a pre-battle speech.

At this point, we have three protagonists in separate units doing vastly different things. John Basilone’s heroism on Guadalcanal — during which he and his unit held off a 3,000-strong Japanese regiment — is rewarded with the Congressional Medal of Honor and he is sent home to for a stateside War Bond tour. Eugene Sledge is sent first to Palau and then to Peleliu. Leckie is also on Peleliu — perhaps the only instance where any of the three are in close physical proximity — but is wounded by an explosion and sent home on a hospital ship. Basilone is promoted to Gunnery Sergeant and helps train the men of the 27th Marines that will eventually land on Iwo Jima. (Oddly, the episode in which he takes up the mantle of drill instructor takes place an episode after the Peleliu, despite the fact that he became a drill instructor in the winter of 1943 and the battle of Peleliu took place in the fall of 1944, which only serves to reinforce the pre-existing narrative inconsistency and lack of cohesion.)

In one of the most baffling stylistic choices of the entire series, we are treated to a ten-minute scene on Iwo Jima — the only mention of the battle that Hanks and Spielberg saw fit to make. In it, we see John Basilone doing what will eventually earn him a posthumous Navy Cross: flanking and destroying a blockhouse, killing the Japanese soldiers inside it, guiding a tank through a minefield, and eventually being killed by enemy fire. Band of Brothers dedicated two episodes each to the Normandy Campaign, the Market-Garden/Holland Campaign, and the siege of Bastogne, but somehow The Pacific manages to devote all of ten minutes to one of the most defining battles in Marine history, the only U.S. Marine battle of the war in which overall American casualties outnumbered those of the Japanese. The battle of Iwo Jima remains as important to the Marine Corps — if not more so — as Bastogne is to the 101st Airborne. Considering the eventual importance of Iwo Jima to the Air Force’s raids on Japan, which culminated in the dropping of the atomic bomb, its omission from the storyline is glaring.

So much for the narrative. I’ve already mentioned in a few asides how The Pacific differs from Band of Brothers, but there are other elements missing as well. Band of Brothers managed to walk a fine line by pointing out men worthy of respect and admiration (Richard Winters, Carwood Lipton, medic Eugene “Doc” Roe, and many others) and holding them up as paragons of gentlemanly virtues and honorable characteristics. Other characters, such as Bill Guarnere, Ronald Speirs, and Roy Cobb, displayed baser tendencies but remained sympathetic characters — Ronald Speirs’ ascendance from a shadowy figure rumored to have murdered POWs to the capable, if stern, commander of Easy Company remains one of my favorite character arcs of the series. We understand Bill Guarnere’s hatred of Germans — he discovers that his brother was killed in Monte Cassino, Italy, hours before dropping into Normandy on D-Day — even if we don’t condone it.

The men in The Pacific lack such identity. Leckie seems eager enough to join up, but once he’s there, he becomes a sardonic figure, imbued with the kind of irony that seems unlikely to have existed in the 1940s. His friends are two-dimensional stereotypes, and I find it hard to describe them, because I honestly don’t have much of a memory of who they are or what makes them unique as characters — this despite having seen the series in the past month. By comparison, in Band of Brothers, the men of Easy Company stand out as individuals. Richard Winters is an obvious protagonist, but the show doesn’t focus on just him — one episode is devoted entirely to the hardships suffered by the company’s medic, who is forced to scrounge and make do with the scant medical supplies of a besieged division. Repeated viewings have made the characters stand out more, but I get the uneasy feeling that I could watch The Pacific on repeat and never get a sense of the personalities of Leckie’s supposed buddies.

Basilone has two best friends on Guadalcanal, one of whom dies and one of whom survives (and is never heard from again after Basilone leaves for the United States). Afterwards, though, he doesn’t really have comrades as such — just a string of adulating family members, friends, and groupies. His love interest (and, eventually, wife), Lena Riggi, is one of the few characters — female or otherwise — in the series who seems to be her own person. Her interactions with Basilone are actually somewhat painful to watch — he’s supposed to be (and is) a hero, and yet her qualities are much more what we as viewers would associate with heroism. It would have been refreshing and interesting if the directors and producers had examined that kind of characterization and interaction more closely, but darn it, there was a timetable, and that interminable slow-motion shot of John Basilone exhaling his dying breath on a bloody Iwo Jima beach just couldn’t wait.

Sledge has the dubious distinction of being the most fleshed-out of any of the characters. He defies his father’s wishes to join the Marine Corps, despite a pre-existing heart condition, and we see his transition from idealistic, eager youth into a hardened, battle-weary Marine. The episodes with Sledge come the closest to Band of Brothers — the camaraderie among the soldiers, the idealization of their commanding officer (who, unlike his counterpart Richard Winters, dies a hero’s death at the hands of a Japanese sniper), and the examination of the psychological “breaking point” of men involved in prolonged combat situations. However, it still falls short of what Band of Brothers created — as much as we might empathize with Sledge, we don’t really connect with him.

Most of these criticisms are probably due to the lack of involvement on the part of the veterans portrayed. Several veterans who show up in the series did offer first-hand accounts of the battles, but none of the three protagonists were alive for filming — Basilone obviously died in 1945, and Sledge and Leckie both passed away in 2001. A large part of what made Band of Brothers great was the fact that it focused on one unit, and using the stories of the men who made it up to create a holistic narrative structure. That type of structure is sadly lacking in The Pacific.

Finally, it’s worth noting the attitudes of the people — or, in this case, one person — involved. Tom Hanks notoriously referred to the war in The Pacific as “America’s racist war:”

Appearing on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on March 5, Hanks said that The Pacific depicts a war of “racism and terror” and asked the interviewer if that sounded “familiar to what we might be going through today.”

Band of Brothers made no political statements. It showed frankly the experiences of a combat unit in Europe — good and bad, redemptive and traumatic. The Pacific — in Tom Hanks’ mind, apparently — is meant to make a political statement, and this may explain even more about why it fails as a series. The war with Japan was racially charged, to be sure, but to call it “racist” is to take an extreme leap. It’s also rather appalling, given that Germany was itself perpetrating a racist war against Jews, Gypsies, and other minorities throughout Europe at the same time. I’d like to think that Hanks was merely oblivious in his cognitive moral dissonance, but at this point I’m honestly not sure.

It’s also telling that little mention is made of Japanese atrocities towards Americans, as well as the vast majority of the Asian populations of countries occupied by Japan. American citizens were not unaware of Japan’s behavior in cases such as the Rape of Nanking or the conquest of the Philippines. However, scenes in which Americans loot Japanese corpses for their gold teeth or murder wounded Japanese prisoners remain contextless — there is no mention that a motive besides racism and hatred might underlie the attitude of the average American Marine.

It’s obvious that a great deal of effort and care went into The Pacific. It’s also apparent that Hanks and Spielberg really did mean to create a stylistic sequel of sorts to Band of Brothers, which makes their failure all the more poignant.

As someone who has interviewed veterans of World War Two for a journalism project, and as a fan of historical accuracy in general, I cannot in good faith recommend The Pacific — its essence falls disappointingly short of both its ambition and the truth.

Resisting the Islamization of Football in Catalonia


FC Barcelona shirt: before and after
(The original FC Barcelona football shirt, and the improved version)


Platform for Catalonia (PxC) is one of the newest “identitarian”, or nationalist, parties to emerge in Europe. Its primary appeal is to Catalans, obviously, but its unabashed non-PC devotion to its own people has made it the model for the rest of Spain.

Our Spanish correspondent Hermes has translated an article published on June 21 on the Platform for Catalonia website about a controversy over the shirts worn by the Barcelona football club that advertise the Qatar Foundation:

Francesc Gesa: “Nowadays those who buy FC Barcelona football shirt are forced to make propaganda for an Islamic dictatorship”

Press release from PxC

The identitarian youth of Catalonia call the fans of the FCB on to erase the Qatar Foundation advertisement from the FCB football shirt

Vic | Newsroom — The identitarian youth of Catalonia (JIxC) has announced the starting of a campaign to force the FCB to allow anybody buying this football team’s shirt to erase the Qatar Foundation advertisement from it.

The goal of this initiative is to make fans realize what means to display the name of this organization on the shirt of the team they support: “Nowadays those who buy FC Barcelona football shirts are forced to make propaganda for an Islamic dictatorship”.

The identitarian youth of Catalonia have highlighted the viability of this proposal due to the fact that “years ago the club granted the opportunity to erase the number and the name of a player who left the team in order to join the arch-enemy of the club. Now it should do the same regarding this more universal issue.”


The chair of this youth movement, Francesc Gesa, has stated that “Behind this organization there’s the Islamic dictatorship of a country in which there is neither freedom of faith nor gender equality.”

The youth division of Plataforma per Catalunya has appealed to the responsibility of the team followers in joining this initiative and cleansing the shirt of their beloved team from the dirt of wearing the name of Qatar Foundation.

Gesa has called for the right of the fans to rebel against this situation and not to take part in religious fanaticism.

PxC
Vic, June 22, 2012