batshitinsane
July 16, 2006 2:51 PM   Subscribe

World War III...maybe IV? Former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich says America is in World War III and President Bush should say so. He has plans for North Korea and Iran...and a newsletter, too. Related: 1, 2, 3, 4.
posted by taosbat (114 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
There is a political element to his talk of World War III. Gingrich said that public opinion can change "the minute you use the language" of World War III. The message then, he said, is, "OK, if we're in the third world war, which side do you think should win?"

"There's going to be a national conversation in October," Gingrich said of the final sprint to the November election. "The only question is whether it's the Republicans defining it or whether we have some nutty idea that we can run local races, and so the entire definition is on the left."
posted by taosbat at 2:51 PM on July 16, 2006


He said Bush needs to deliver a speech to Congress and "connect all the dots" for Americans.

He said European leaders and some in the Bush administration who are urging a restrained response from Israel are falling short of what needs to be done "because they haven't crossed the bridge of realizing this is a war."


I miss 1999. We were all kinda worried about Y2K and the dot-com collapse, and Monica. Wasn't it great?
posted by jokeefe at 2:55 PM on July 16, 2006


i thought the cold war was world war 3.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 2:59 PM on July 16, 2006


Although I see the world in starkly different terms from Newt, Newt's vision would probably sell. That's sad.
posted by caddis at 3:02 PM on July 16, 2006


Looks like Newt has come around to the new Republican way of thinking. War isn't just people lives or anything, its an election year wedge issue.
posted by hwestiii at 3:03 PM on July 16, 2006


Oh, for fuck's sake.
posted by loquacious at 3:05 PM on July 16, 2006


We've always been at war with Eastasia.

We've always been at war.
posted by loquacious at 3:06 PM on July 16, 2006


James Wolcott on the labelling of this conflict as WWIII.

As far as the rhetorical escalation goes, the Democratic response should be: "Okay, if this really is WWIII, then we want real leaders to lead the battle. Bush and Cheney can resign, the Speaker of the House can become President, and then we can debate America's involvement. Because the current administration isn't competant to fight this."

Of course, this will never happen.
posted by UrineSoakedRube at 3:07 PM on July 16, 2006


yes, i think it's possible world war 3 has started ... and thanks to that idiot in the white house and his iraq adventure, we're going to be caught in it
posted by pyramid termite at 3:08 PM on July 16, 2006


This isn't WWIII. WWIII does not begin until Israel bombs Iran. Given the amount of American military might right next door, it is not much of a stretch to think that the US might get involved if that happened. It is also easy to imagine a scenario where outraged Pakistani fundamentalists stage a coup and take control of Pakistan's atomic arsenal. The upside of this is that a nuclear winter solves the whole "global warming" problem.
posted by Crotalus at 3:08 PM on July 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


The cold war was World War 3, the war on drugs was World Wars 4 and 5, the war on porno is going to be Wars 6 through 48, and the war on terror is going to abandon the sequel numbering, like Star Trek Generations did.
posted by hoverboards don't work on water at 3:08 PM on July 16, 2006 [2 favorites]


Also:

There's never been a bad peace, or a good war.

Now if you'll excuse me I'm just going to go scream in my pillow for a while. Maybe until... what month is it? How about April? March? Yeah, I should be done by then.
posted by loquacious at 3:09 PM on July 16, 2006


WWIII does not begin until Israel bombs Iran.

agreed ... but i'm not so sure that day is very far off
posted by pyramid termite at 3:10 PM on July 16, 2006


OK, if i stub my toe it's World War Five.
posted by Artw at 3:12 PM on July 16, 2006


Almost half the people in America are so dispirited that they don't even vote in presidential elections anymore, and there are even more non-voters for mid-term elections. To seize power, a party doesn't need to appeal to the majority- a highly energized minority will do.

Unfortunately, even a fake issue like this one will whip enough people into a froth that it will probably decide the outcome of the election.
posted by Jatayu das at 3:18 PM on July 16, 2006


"World War" is an outdated concept and the sooner the aging Baby Boomer generation gets over its feelings of inadequacy about having not been members of the "Great Generation" and being the heroes of history like their fathers we can move on from this inane comparison.
posted by stbalbach at 3:22 PM on July 16, 2006 [3 favorites]


World War III — this time, we're Germany!
posted by hattifattener at 3:26 PM on July 16, 2006 [8 favorites]


Perhaps it is because I am an older guy but for me, a world war consists of various nations on the one side fighting various other nations on an opposing side. In such cases, the fighters on either side wear uniforms identifying the nations they represent.

It is possible to have lots of people fighting lots of other people and have warfare but without the need to label it World War III or whichever number is used.

In WWI and WWII, there can be found a beginning, a period of intense fighting, and an ending (peace treaties)...In "world war III?
posted by Postroad at 3:29 PM on July 16, 2006


It's the War to Never End Any Wars Ever.
posted by Astro Zombie at 3:32 PM on July 16, 2006


I swear that I saw Bush say that the 'War on Terror' was WWIII the other week. Someone tell me I didn't dream that?
posted by Kickstart70 at 3:33 PM on July 16, 2006


Kickstart70, please see Related: 4.
posted by taosbat at 3:38 PM on July 16, 2006


Just when you think things can't get worse, Newt decides to come out of his spider hole and enlighten us. Swell.
posted by bim at 3:38 PM on July 16, 2006


This is the war that never ends, yes it goes on and on my friends. Some people started fighting it, not knowing what it was, and they'll continue fighting it forever just because this is the war that never ends, yes it goes on and on my friends...
posted by Stauf at 3:41 PM on July 16, 2006 [2 favorites]


Newt won't be happy until he can draft young Democrats and package them as cannon fodder for interminable wars. Upping the rhetoric with dramatic labels is just a ploy to reviving the military draft. That boy's got a mean temperament, a long memory, and presidential aspirations. "batshitinsane" doesn't begin to cover his issues.

What really sucks about all this is that Newt is still regarded by anyone in America as any kind of leader or thinker. His noises about a presidential campaign are the oinking that identifies, for the confused, the source of that incredible stink they've begun to recognize as American politics: pandering "issue" politicians.
posted by paulsc at 3:43 PM on July 16, 2006


Fine. It's WWIII. Now please raise the maximum tax bracket to 80% as it was during WWII, implement a draft, raise the price of war material like gasoline to 8$/gallon, start rationing food, and fine people who don't recycle their plastic, rubber, and scrap-metal.

Shorter: Americans might like the (false) moral certitude of calling something WWIII (but I think with his approval below 40%, Bush's handlers are probably overestimating a lot of things these days), but they're too fat and happy to actually make any of the sacrifices a real World War entails--most obviously, their sons and daughters.

Love seeing the chickenhawks play tough guys--too good for Vietnam, too young for WWII. Fucking cowards.
posted by bardic at 3:44 PM on July 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


From Taosbat's first link -- Gingrich said in an interview Saturday that Bush should call a joint session of Congress the first week of September and talk about global military conflicts in much starker terms than have been heard from the president.

Maybe it's just me , but WWIII would merit interrupting Congress' summer vacation, rather than waiting until September or October.
posted by bim at 3:48 PM on July 16, 2006


Maybe it's just me , but WWIII would merit interrupting Congress' summer vacation, rather than waiting until September or October.

"From a marketing point of view, you don't introduce new products in August." --- White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card in 2003, explaining why "Project Stampede America Into Iraq War II" was introduced in September.
posted by octothorpe at 3:52 PM on July 16, 2006


Sorry, that quote from Card was actually made in 2002. CNN article here.
posted by octothorpe at 3:59 PM on July 16, 2006


Newt, Newt, Newt, you don't even-- you're glib.

You don't even know what a World War is. If you start talking about World War Three, you have to evaluate and read the research papers on how they came up with these wars, Newt, okay?
posted by chimaera at 4:01 PM on July 16, 2006


Wasn't Newt a history teacher or professor before Congress? Now that's scary.
posted by bim at 4:04 PM on July 16, 2006


I'm of an age that, when I hear, "World War III," I think, "nuklear combat, toe-to-toe with the Rooskies." World War IV was strictly stone clubs and axes, "I Was A Teenage Caveman" territory.

Times have changed, of course. But I think the WWIII "brand" is still a hard sell to most Americans. (Who, let's be honest, are opposed to war if they think it will affect them.)
posted by SPrintF at 4:07 PM on July 16, 2006


Remember practicing "Duck and Cover" by getting under your schooldesk?
posted by taosbat at 4:25 PM on July 16, 2006


*sigh*. This is pretty fucked up. The "Israeli front" opening up really does change the dynamic entirely. If it becomes a broader war and Syra or worse, Iran becomes involved things could get really fucked up. Good diplomacy could stabilize things, but certainly we can't count on that from ole Shrubya and the gang.

In fact, I have to say I feel that if the US government's diplomatic abilities hadn't been so degraded this wouldn't have happened at all.

I think there is a real risk that this could escalate into a wider war with the US and Iran. I suppose we'll have to see. I think it's something Iran would want to avoid though, given their nuclear program.
posted by delmoi at 4:30 PM on July 16, 2006


I'm horrified that anyone would introduce 'World War III' as some sort of positive exercise in branding. I've grown up with that phrase as a synonym for Doomsday, and with an implication that a big part of the job of elected leaders was to avoid it.

But I suppose I don't 'support the troops' either, so perhaps this whole militarist frenzy is more of a Gen-Y thing, branding-wise.
posted by pompomtom at 4:32 PM on July 16, 2006



Fine. It's WWIII. Now please raise the maximum tax bracket to 80% as it was during WWII, implement a draft, raise the price of war material like gasoline to 8$/gallon, start rationing food, and fine people who don't recycle their plastic, rubber, and scrap-metal.


Don't forget mandatory "Victory Gardens" and star studded mandatory USO shows.
The only way you will be getting a steak is if you are on the front line.
posted by Balisong at 4:33 PM on July 16, 2006


Duck and cover, Taosbat? Heck, I remember those green drum containers in the basement of my Catholic school!
posted by bim at 4:34 PM on July 16, 2006


Ahem. May 5th.
posted by wendell at 4:37 PM on July 16, 2006


Classic Gingrich.

Oil prices may be shooting up, the economy may tank, the Middle East may wind up in flames but what really matters is Republican Control of the House.

If anything is there to convince you that this isn't WWIII this is it.
posted by sien at 4:52 PM on July 16, 2006


green drum containers That doesn't ring a bell. What were they?
posted by taosbat at 4:52 PM on July 16, 2006


The "Israeli front" opening up really does change the dynamic...if the US government's diplomatic abilities hadn't been so degraded this wouldn't have happened at all.

posted by delmoi


"grotesque"
posted by taosbat at 5:10 PM on July 16, 2006


I don't know. WWIII really might be a good investment. I've heard estimates as low as 30,000 American dead over a ten year period. Considering Vietnam cost us 50,000 and that wasn't even really a war, W3 could be a steal. And look what we end up with: bases in Iraq and Lebanon, guaranteed access to Iraqi and Iran oil, final containment of Israeli aggression, and final containment of Sino-Russian ambitions in the ME. Of course there won't be any sort of peace after the war is over. We can annihilate the armies of the ME and knock over the regimes, but the end result will be Iraq on a grand scale. There'll be an endless stream of "secondary conflicts." WWIII might last a hundred years. And yeah, we'll probably have to kill tens of millions of Muslims. But overall it could be a good thing for everybody. And if we are going to act, we should act now. It's clear that the Israelis don't have enough men and Europe is too smart/doesn't have the stomach so all that oil will have to be purchased with American blood.
posted by nixerman at 5:11 PM on July 16, 2006


I've heard estimates as low as 30,000 American dead over a ten year period.

What would be the estimate if Russia was somehow dragged into the war on Iran's side? Do you think Russia and China would simply sit on the sidelines and let the US make a powerplay for 2/3 of the worlds remaining oil reserves?
posted by Crotalus at 5:13 PM on July 16, 2006


Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
posted by keswick at 5:16 PM on July 16, 2006


"green drum containers That doesn't ring a bell. What were they?"

During the 50's and 60's, fallout shelters were created by the Office of Civil Defense as a place to wait out World War III. Supplies included drinking water in metal drums (with plastic liners), with all sorts of instructions on the drum including how to use it as a toilet after you drank all the water.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 5:18 PM on July 16, 2006


taosbat : Civil defense supplies like drums of drinking water and packages of well lasting food.
posted by boo_radley at 5:21 PM on July 16, 2006


Exactly, taosbat. And they just found an unused chache stashed inside the Brooklyn Bridge.
posted by bim at 5:22 PM on July 16, 2006


Crotalus, neither Russia and China would openly challenge an American army in the ME. This would damage their economies a lot more than the alternative. At most, they might slip Iran a nuclear weapon or three, but so what? Iranian nukes could't reach American shores. Nukes would be a stalling tactic against a determined American force. And most rational players agree that an American occupied Iran is better than a nuclear wasteland Iran. Both Russia and China recognize that America doesn't want to rule the world (a la Hitler), she just wants to ensure the smooth, continuation of global trade. This is good for pretty much everybody... except for the dead brown people but heh, sometimes you have to break a few eggs.
posted by nixerman at 5:29 PM on July 16, 2006


I believe that Newt is running for President.
posted by R. Mutt at 5:29 PM on July 16, 2006


Both Russia and China recognize that America doesn't want to rule the world (a la Hitler), she just wants to ensure the smooth, continuation of global trade.

Let's poll the Russians and Chinese on this.
posted by Crotalus at 5:33 PM on July 16, 2006


Bush's Real Agenda
posted by homunculus at 5:39 PM on July 16, 2006


Civil defense supplies... Oh, well, I went to army post schools. We didn't have civilian stuff. But a couple of the newer schools did have bomb shelters in the basement.

And, I have one of these:

But I don't know how old it is.

So I guess I'm ready for WW III...or IV. Or for the Repukes to hold onto congress... Whatever...
posted by taosbat at 5:40 PM on July 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


Kick ass.
posted by boo_radley at 5:40 PM on July 16, 2006


BURGER KING - Have it YOUR way.
posted by mischief at 5:48 PM on July 16, 2006


unless it involves nukes, which israel (and the US) are explicitly trying to prevent (WMD, deterrence and all :), it's gotta be a letdown for all those cold warriors...

still if as spengler speculates: "The past week's events in the Middle East have a disturbing feel of July 1914 about them... The logical result is continued escalation until America and Iran stand off in earnest..."

iran by october!?
posted by kliuless at 5:51 PM on July 16, 2006


Fine. It's WWIII. Now please raise the maximum tax bracket to 80% as it was during WWII

That's actually a bit generous. The top income tax rate then was 94%.
posted by gsteff at 5:51 PM on July 16, 2006


...except for the dead brown people but heh, sometimes you have to break a few eggs.
posted by nixerman


As far as I can see, neocons do want to rule the world via military enforcement of US global trade.

And you, of course, are posting from the front lines in either Iraq or Afghanistan...if not, my son's an army recruiter.
posted by taosbat at 5:54 PM on July 16, 2006


Gingrich: 'This Is, In Fact, World War III'
posted by taosbat at 5:58 PM on July 16, 2006


The idea of polarized enemies, or of opposing forces is so outdated. In this new era wars don't need a rationale, it's free-flowing, anti-hierarchical, you don't even need an enemy. War of all against all. War is a growth industry. There's a lot of money in destroying cities and countries and "rebuilding" them. This is the era of "Just Do It" and "Let's Roll". We had our 60's generation of sexual indulgence, now it's time to indulge in War. War is Profit. Profit is war.
posted by Buck Eschaton at 5:59 PM on July 16, 2006


If we are "in WWIII" then I think that the two countries that are leading the pack at having instigating it are the US and Israel. Like two bullies on the block. Yes there are the troublesome kids that live on the other side of the street, but they are, for the most part, all mouth and everyone on the block knows it except, seemingly, for the two bullies. Or maybe they know it, they'd just rather show off their muscles and try to impress others as to their machoness. And maybe the mouthy kids wouldn't be so mouthy if they weren't always getting punched in the nose or made fun of. They all could use a little spanking on their little bottoms, shorts down, bare hand. Maybe some time out, via a mid-term election, or perhaps some soap in the mouth so they'd blow little bubbles post burp.
posted by Sir BoBoMonkey Pooflinger Esquire III at 6:01 PM on July 16, 2006


Iranian nukes could't reach American shores.

Ever heard this thing called a boat?
posted by delmoi at 6:02 PM on July 16, 2006


... the US and Israel. Like two bullies on the block.

Who runs Bartertown?
posted by Crotalus at 6:04 PM on July 16, 2006


like it seems plausible...

oil money fuels combatants
"It's generally accepted that Hezbollah receives approximately $100 million a year from the government in Tehran, which constitutes the bulk of the funding for Hezbollah's operations."

"Iran's got more than $45 billion in foreign-exchange reserves in the bank. Iran thinks that its oil is vital to the world economy, and the West can't cut it off. And so Iran is remarkably self confident."
iran's stealth war
Bush said he thinks those suspicions are legitimate: "There's a lot of people who believe that the Iranians are trying to exert more and more influence over the entire region and the use of Hizbullah is to create more chaos to advance their strategy." He called that "a theory that's got some legs to it as far as I'm concerned."
and then: 'Blair Joins Bush in Blaming Iran, Syria Over Violence'

so you kinda have to wonder...
posted by kliuless at 6:05 PM on July 16, 2006


With any luck there'll be a bird flu pandemic amongst humans, two-thirds of the population will be wiped out, and the survivors will be forced to get along if they're to survive.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:19 PM on July 16, 2006


Wasn't Newt discredited almost a decade ago? For that matter isn't the entire Republican party discredited on a daily basis here in America? This is the equivalent of the petulent child turning over the Monopoly board because he realizes he's going to lose.
posted by any major dude at 6:20 PM on July 16, 2006


Who runs Bartertown.

So, that would make the US the brain-deficient giant, and Israel the sadistic midget riding on its back? Whew! We just have to wait for Mel Gibson to show up and toot his little whistle. Or is that what Bin Laden perceived himself to be?

I love these movie analogies. The easily digestible symbology of them seems to make thing seem a little clearer. Now if Syria was Judd Nelson's character in Breakfast Club then Molly Ringwald would be...
posted by Sir BoBoMonkey Pooflinger Esquire III at 6:23 PM on July 16, 2006


One of my favorite Gingrich quotes: "If combat means living in a ditch, females have biological problems staying in a ditch for thirty days because they get infections and they don't have upper body strength. I mean, some do, but they're relatively rare. On the other hand, men are basically little piglets, you drop them in the ditch, they roll around in it, doesn't matter, you know. These things are very real. On the other hand, if combat means being on an Aegis-class cruiser managing the computer controls for twelve ships and their rockets, a female may be again dramatically better than a male who gets very, very frustrated sitting in a chair all the time because males are biologically driven to go out and hunt giraffes."

I'm amazed that some people refer to Gingrich as a scholar. I just would love to have heard the conversation when he counseled his daughter about her first monthly "infection."
posted by JackFlash at 6:24 PM on July 16, 2006


This is where your investments in the usual suspects -- Boeing, Raytheon, General Dynamics, Halliburton -- REALLY start to pay off.
posted by clevershark at 6:27 PM on July 16, 2006


On a semi-serious tangent, what Hollywood could use is a movie that makes a Superman, Spiderman (insert established hero here) into an anti-government, progressive/liberal, freedom fighter that kicks butt with a flame-thrower then takes off on his crotch rocket doing a wheelie like Fast and Furious. V for Vendetta only took it half-way there. Movies, media of all kinds, Newt's mouth, they're all propaganda of some sort or another.
posted by Sir BoBoMonkey Pooflinger Esquire III at 6:33 PM on July 16, 2006


Dear Mr. Bush,

Please don't kill.

Also...


Thanks,

KS70
posted by Kickstart70 at 6:33 PM on July 16, 2006


JackFlash: when's the last time you heard of a male getting a genital yeast infection? Now, how many commercials do you see for solving such for females?

Not that I really agree with Gingrich but, IMO and IME, males can get dirtier for longer periods with less consequences.
posted by Kickstart70 at 6:36 PM on July 16, 2006


I remember being against Gingrich back in the day, but do you remember the Contract with America?

On the first day of the 104th Congress, the new Republican majority will immediately pass the following major reforms, aimed at restoring the faith and trust of the American people in their government:

* FIRST, require all laws that apply to the rest of the country also apply equally to the Congress;
* SECOND, select a major, independent auditing firm to conduct a comprehensive audit of Congress for waste, fraud or abuse;
* THIRD, cut the number of House committees, and cut committee staff by one-third;
* FOURTH, limit the terms of all committee chairs;
* FIFTH, ban the casting of proxy votes in committee;
* SIXTH, require committee meetings to be open to the public;
* SEVENTH, require a three-fifths majority vote to pass a tax increase;
* EIGHTH, guarantee an honest accounting of our Federal Budget by implementing zero base-line budgeting.

Thereafter, within the first 100 days of the 104th Congress, we shall bring to the House Floor the following bills, each to be given full and open debate, each to be given a clear and fair vote and each to be immediately available this day for public inspection and scrutiny.

1. THE FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY ACT: A balanced budget/tax limitation amendment and a legislative line-item veto to restore fiscal responsibility to an out- of-control Congress, requiring them to live under the same budget constraints as families and businesses.

2. THE TAKING BACK OUR STREETS ACT: An anti-crime package including stronger truth-in- sentencing, "good faith" exclusionary rule exemptions, effective death penalty provisions, and cuts in social spending from this summer's "crime" bill to fund prison construction and additional law enforcement to keep people secure in their neighborhoods and kids safe in their schools.

3. THE PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY ACT: Discourage illegitimacy and teen pregnancy by prohibiting welfare to minor mothers and denying increased AFDC for additional children while on welfare, cut spending for welfare programs, and enact a tough two-years-and-out provision with work requirements to promote individual responsibility.

4. THE FAMILY REINFORCEMENT ACT: Child support enforcement, tax incentives for adoption, strengthening rights of parents in their children's education, stronger child pornography laws, and an elderly dependent care tax credit to reinforce the central role of families in American society.

5. THE AMERICAN DREAM RESTORATION ACT: A S500 per child tax credit, begin repeal of the marriage tax penalty, and creation of American Dream Savings Accounts to provide middle class tax relief.

6. THE NATIONAL SECURITY RESTORATION ACT: No U.S. troops under U.N. command and restoration of the essential parts of our national security funding to strengthen our national defense and maintain our credibility around the world.

7. THE SENIOR CITIZENS FAIRNESS ACT: Raise the Social Security earnings limit which currently forces seniors out of the work force, repeal the 1993 tax hikes on Social Security benefits and provide tax incentives for private long-term care insurance to let Older Americans keep more of what they have earned over the years.

8. THE JOB CREATION AND WAGE ENHANCEMENT ACT: Small business incentives, capital gains cut and indexation, neutral cost recovery, risk assessment/cost-benefit analysis, strengthening the Regulatory Flexibility Act and unfunded mandate reform to create jobs and raise worker wages.

9. THE COMMON SENSE LEGAL REFORM ACT: "Loser pays" laws, reasonable limits on punitive damages and reform of product liability laws to stem the endless tide of litigation.

10. THE CITIZEN LEGISLATURE ACT: A first-ever vote on term limits to replace career politicians with citizen legislators.

Sure, that was a pipe dream, but it's almost like we need someone to advance a cause similar, today.
posted by Balisong at 6:39 PM on July 16, 2006


Balisong writes "Sure, that was a pipe dream, but it's almost like we need someone to advance a cause similar, today."

Meh. They'll just arrive in Washington with great ceremony, sound and fury, then once in power will promptly forget whatever "contract with America" they had come to sign. Exactly like the Gingrich bunch. That whole nonsense was just a hugely cynical effort in branding IMHO.
posted by clevershark at 6:41 PM on July 16, 2006


newt, shut up go fuck someone elses wife, willya?
posted by quonsar at 7:06 PM on July 16, 2006


Just what we need, another Contract On America. A second Reichstag fire isn't enough.
posted by Mr. Six at 7:12 PM on July 16, 2006


i dont think this is world war 3. not enough of the world is involved.
posted by obeygiant at 7:24 PM on July 16, 2006


That's actually a bit generous. The top income tax rate then was 94%.

And the loopholes were wide enough to drive a truck through.
posted by Kwantsar at 7:37 PM on July 16, 2006


Kickstart70, you really believe that stuff?!
posted by JackFlash at 8:01 PM on July 16, 2006


In all sincerity, about the only thing that could make Newt look like an "intellectual" once again after his foibles in the 90's, sexual and monetary, would be an adminstration that allowed a horrible civilan slaughter to occur on its own soil and then invaded a country from which none of the perpetrators came.

Oh, wait. . .

Anyways, I'm Albert Fucking Einstein in case anyone was curious.
posted by bardic at 8:06 PM on July 16, 2006


well, we had a good run for a few thousand years there. if you're the last one out, be sure to turn out the lights when you go. i guess i'll spend tonight crying over the future my soon-to-be-born son evidently isn't going to have, so thanks for that, you dumb monkeys, thanks for that. no, on second thought, i won't even give you the pleasure of making me cry (you'd like that wouldn't you, you sick little monkeys?); i'm just gonna start laughing instead. i'm gonna laugh my fucking head right off, and then i'll just keep laughing and laughing even after my head falls off and rolls into the sea.

you stick to your guns all right, i'll give you that. no matter how many alternatives you're offered, you stick to your guns. even when the barrel's jammed up against your own damn fool head, you just gotta pull that trigger. i don't know. whatever. it's all good.

"oh yeah, it's getting late now... guess it's time to go to bed now..."
posted by saulgoodman at 8:38 PM on July 16, 2006


"With any luck there'll be a bird flu pandemic amongst humans, two-thirds of the population will be wiped out, and the survivors will be forced to get along if they're to survive."
posted by five fresh fish at 9:19 PM EST on July 16


In 1998, the London Times reported on Israeli efforts to create biological weapons which could selectively target ethnic Arabs. Israel is not a signatory to the Biological Weapons Convention, and in the late 1990's, expanded the campus and physical plant at its primary biological weapons research facility at the National Institute for Biological Research in Ness Ziona, south of Tel Aviv.
posted by paulsc at 8:49 PM on July 16, 2006


Looking at the Bright Side of World War III
posted by taosbat at 9:20 PM on July 16, 2006


There's a lot of people who believe that the Iranians are trying to exert more and more influence over the entire region and the use of Hizbullah is to create more chaos to advance their strategy.

Interesting reading. However, the expansion of an Islamic state, especially with the threat of nukes, is not in the interests of Russia, China, India, or the EU--let alone the United States. This is not likely to change, unless Putin suddenly finds Allah. Given all this, I'd say Iran is effectively contained. The sad thing is that Iran was trending toward Western style reforms before the "axis of evil" comment. Bet Bush wishes he could take that one back.
posted by Crotalus at 9:22 PM on July 16, 2006


Can't make it here anymore
posted by taosbat at 9:34 PM on July 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: a little spanking on their little bottoms, shorts down, bare hand.
posted by Scoo at 9:40 PM on July 16, 2006


Speaking of the Contract on with America, the Republicans promised to limit themselves to 12 years, but now that 12 years have passed they're not so sure.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:25 PM on July 16, 2006


paulsc: That's Weekly World News territory. Ideas are far different from actual ability. They may be trying to develop an Arab-specific virus; they're also probably trying to use telepathy to improve their special ops' ability to communicate undetected.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:46 PM on July 16, 2006


There is a political element to his talk of World War III.

No shit.

This is not the beginning of a World War, and anyone who thinks so is either hyperventilating or trying to get others to.

No one with any large standing military force is going to go to bat for Hezbollah, Syria, or Iran (or even Israel). No great coalition of nations is going to start lobbing ICBMs over this little spat going on in the Middle East.

Christ, we're a long way from "the only thing to fear is fear itself."
posted by moonbiter at 11:26 PM on July 16, 2006


when's the last time you heard of a male getting a genital yeast infection? -kickstart70

It's called jock itch.
posted by IronLizard at 11:33 PM on July 16, 2006


Iranian nukes could't reach American shores.

Good thing fortress america keeps away boats, planes and a well defended border with Canada and Mexico.

"We know, however, that the smallpox virus still exists in laboratories, and we believe that regimes hostile to the United States may possess this dangerous virus." So I guess one doesn't need nuclear weapons eh?
posted by rough ashlar at 12:01 AM on July 17, 2006


Duck and Cover!


posted by bim at 4:14 AM on July 17, 2006


hum... syria the tipping point? hezbollah trying to lure israel into a groundwar?

what seems to be lacking is diplomacy, as the FT sez:
Bush has chosen a particularly troubling moment in global affairs to discover diplomacy's uses. Israeli forces are bombarding southern Lebanon and the West Bank. Afghanistan looks increasingly vulnerable to a resurgent Taliban. And Pakistan - the first country to be told "you're either with us or you're against us" after September 11 - is showing impatience with its three-year peace process with India, the victim this week of a deadly terrorist attack, which it alleges can be traced to Pakistan-based groups.

Diplomacy was never meant to be easy. Yet, what choice does Mr Bush now have? Because of his ill-fated decision to invade Iraq, Washington finds itself with far less ability to impose its preferences on the world than it had in the aftermath of 9/11. It was because Mr Bush listened to neo-conservatives on Iraq that he now has little choice but to work closely with other countries to get things done. More than three years after the invasion, there has been no "big bang" of democracy in the Middle East, as was predicted. Nor has the adventure successfully tied down al-Qaeda, which continues to operate in different continents. And the US is more than $300bn (£160bn) poorer for it. As the saying goes, Mr Bush has been "mugged by reality".

[...]

Urgent and forceful diplomatic action is needed now if this crisis is not to develop into an anarchic, borderless free-for-all that will set new standards of violence even for the Middle East.
and on the other side:
[T]he advantage lies with the side that can make the most persuasive case (to itself and to the world) that it is indeed fighting for its very survival. Otherwise, the barbaric crimes and senseless butchery that such wars entail will eventually sap the morale of the party with the weaker existential claim -- which is usually the militarily stronger power...

Public doubts and creeping ethical qualms are being swept away, at least for a time, making it far easier to ignore the few voices, like Levy's, that still stubbornly insist on pointing out that creating the illusion of a just war is not the same as actually fighting one.
esp for the people caught in the crossfire...
posted by kliuless at 4:45 AM on July 17, 2006


It is a good way to draw some attention to himself and jump-start his presidential ambition. It's just a PR stunt.
posted by henryw at 5:24 AM on July 17, 2006


DId anyone bother to tell Newt that WWIII is a common synomym for the end of the world??
posted by urthwalker at 5:33 AM on July 17, 2006


Right wing talking heads appear to have picked up on Newt's talking points. WWIII is everywhere. The sad part is the more you fret publicly over the coming Armageddon, the more likely it becomes. Al Qaeda was merely a disaffected political/religious fanatic group with grand horizons but little else and Muslim extremism was similarly situated. It wasn't merely 9-11 that vaulted them to prominence and dramatically enhanced their legitimacy in the Arab. More important than that one day's actions were the responses of the US and the rest of the World to the threat we imagine they present. The World fretted, obsessively so, and took draconian actions all of which are noticed by the boys on the street in the Arab world. "Boy if they can get the West to do all that there must be something to this al Qaeda thing. They really are powerful. I had better join."
posted by caddis at 6:30 AM on July 17, 2006


Can't we lock all these people in a little room and make them play tic tac toe until they figure this shit out?
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 6:43 AM on July 17, 2006


US President George W. Bush, caught on an open microphone at a summit here, said Monday that a key to defusing the Middle East crisis was for "Hezbollah to stop doing this shit."
posted by muckster at 6:43 AM on July 17, 2006


Oversimplification 101.
Germany in WW II = "Germans superior to Jews"
Japan in WWII = "Japanese superior to Chinese"
Militant Islam in WWIII = "Muslims superior to Christians and Jews"

Well, that's what Saudia Arabian gradeschool textbooks say, anyway. Insofar as world wars are fueled by deep-seeded prejudice, we're well on our way to WWIII.
posted by Nquire at 7:06 AM on July 17, 2006


He actually said, "the irony is, what they need to do is get Syria to get Hezbollah to stop doing this shit, and it's over."

Well, he isn't wrong, but who is "they", who is going to get Syria to do it? Not the US, perhaps Russia. The US, though, at the very same time needs to get Israel to stop doing this sh*t. No one but the US can get Israel to stop. Both sides need to retire to their corners, not in preparation for another round but to calm down, sit down, and talk. Pointing fingers of blame will not help. Just stop.
posted by caddis at 7:09 AM on July 17, 2006


We can just avoid the WWIII issue with some hip, savvy branding? say, World War Gamma. We'd eat that right up.
posted by arialblack at 7:10 AM on July 17, 2006


I have no problem with Israel imperializing the entire Middle East and North Africa, so long as they stay under the American thumb.
posted by mischief at 7:55 AM on July 17, 2006


...so long as they stay under the American thumb

Israel was never under American thumb, to my knowledge, nor anyone elses. Right or wrong, they pretty much do whatever they please.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:03 AM on July 17, 2006


Wow, Israel under the American thumb? Sorry dude, it's the other way around.
posted by AspectRatio at 9:39 AM on July 17, 2006


I have no problem with Israel imperializing the entire Middle East and North Africa, so long as they stay under the American thumb.

Thanks, but we've taken enough bad advice from Randians.
posted by goethean at 9:44 AM on July 17, 2006


Wow, Israel under the American thumb? Sorry dude, it's the other way around.

That sounds like it was lifted straight from The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
posted by caddis at 10:36 AM on July 17, 2006


Right-wing media divided: Is U.S. now in World War III, IV, or V?
posted by ericb at 10:40 AM on July 17, 2006


Thanks, but we've taken enough bad advice from Randians.

...who are somehow opposed to redistribution through taxation in every case that does not involve killing people.
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:46 AM on July 17, 2006


Neocons Resurrect Plans For Regional War In The Middle East
posted by taosbat at 11:33 AM on July 17, 2006


When are we going to learn that we have to identify the aggressive monkeys early, and then isolate and apply intensive behavior modification to them before allowing them to join human civilization?

Probably a bit late to get on that now, I'm afraid. We've let them get too numerous and take over everything.
posted by zoogleplex at 11:40 AM on July 17, 2006


Better a randian (note the small r) than a randroid.

Technically, though, I am as separated from objectivism as most of you, just in the other direction.
posted by mischief at 4:50 PM on July 17, 2006


Down?
posted by sonofsamiam at 5:20 PM on July 17, 2006


Nah, anarchic animalist.
posted by mischief at 5:22 PM on July 17, 2006


Wow, Israel under the American thumb? Sorry dude, it's the other way around.

That sounds like it was lifted straight from The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.


Why, exactly, is Israel allowed to have free reign in the region to bomb, invade and occupy while being the recipient of more US foreign aid than any other nation on Earth while being in violation of numerous UN resolutions?

I'm not flame baiting, nor am I anti-semitic... I just don't understand why the US government consistently bends to the will of the Israelis and why so many tax dollars are going to fund its military.

Lyndon Johnson said that the US helps Israel "Because it's right." Hmmm... seems like there should be reasons that make it so.
posted by AspectRatio at 2:28 PM on July 20, 2006


The UN is now making noise about war crimes re: Israel's over-the-top actions. Two soldiers held captive = more than 200 dead civvies? Puh-lease. Someone needs to smack Israel upside the head with a cluebyfour, bring them back to humanity.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:39 PM on July 20, 2006


Here's what I do know about World War III and the impending apocalypse... 1, 2, 3.
posted by taosbat at 8:32 AM on July 21, 2006


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