unarmedcombat

Music is important to me. This morning Henryk Górecki’s Symphony No. 3, Op. 36, Symfonia pieśni żałosnych (Symphony of Sorrowful Songs) plays in my headphones. The solo voice in the first movement sings a Polish lament of Mary, Christ’s mother. In the second movement the same soprano voice sings a message written on the wall of a Gestapo cell during the second world war. The themes here are of motherhood and loss through war.

Helena Wanda Błażusiakówna wrote the message on the Gestapo cell wall. She was eighteen years old at the time, little more than a feckin’ child. She wrote: “O Mamo nie płacz nie-Niebios Przeczysta Królowo Ty zawsze wspieraj mnie” (Oh Mamma do not cry – Immaculate Queen of Heaven support me always)…

She wasn’t thinking about herself. No, feck it. She was thinking about her mother. She recognised it would be her mother who would experienced true despair at her daughter’s ultimate fate.

Xenophobia seems rampant in the UK nowadays. People never learn from the lessons of the past…

Day before yesterday, early A.M., I’m in the living room with my damaged thoughts. Four cats there, keeping me sleepy company. I catch movement from the corner of my eye. Glancing over, I see a mouse…Un ratón! Une souris! Un topo! It’s running in short spurts along the skirting towards the open door to the hall.

Feckin’ incredible, boys and girls.

Four furry heads rise and observe – glowing eyes full of lethal intent – the slow progess of Mr mouse, who seems totally oblivious of any cat presence or immediate danger. Then, almost with a shrug of feline shoulders, the four lower their heads and go back to sleep…Or a semblance of sleep. While I leap from the sofa and give chase to the little gray interloper.

I realise then, at that precise point in time, the cats keep me around as their pet in order to limit the incursions of unwanted creatures from the great outdoors. I’m the chief rat and mouse catcher. My sole raison d’être…

Last night, talk of extraterrestrial life forms on Earth. ‘Already here, probably,’ I proclaimed (a little pissed, perhaps). ‘Arrived before life as we know and accept it came into existence. It’s digital ‘life’, a computer virus, countless billions of years old…’

Programmed by God…?

Undetected by Norton or Mcafee!

It’s here feeding off the world wide web, transforming certain users into mindless, hate-filled trolls. It loves pornography and Yahell and Faecesbook. The Earth today is alien heaven…

I see Cheltenham Ladies’ College is considering getting rid of prep – homework to the uninitiated. It was in the Times newspaper. It’s in order to tackle an “epidemic” of teenage depression and anxiety currently infecting UK schools. Eve Jardine-Young, principal of the 162-year-old boarding and day school in Gloucestershire, said that over the next five years they will review whether to stop giving pupils homework.

Meanwhile, Teachers are being trained to spot mental illness and from September pupils will attend weekly meditation classes and be given twice as long to walk between lessons.

Jardine-Young warned that the average age at which depression was first diagnosed had almost halved from 29 in the 1960s to 15-and-a-half early this century. “We’ve created this epidemic of anxiety for ourselves as a society, and if our obligation as educators is to try to the best of our ability to set young people up as best we can for whatever the future may hold, then to ignore this whole area or to trivialise it is really irresponsible.”

Cheltenham Ladies’ is looking into university-style “flip learning”, where pupils read up on material before classes, as an alternative to homework in two or three subjects. Ms Jardine-Young also said that smartphones, tablets and laptops are making it difficult to keep stress from the outside world coming into the college.

Yeah, I bet it is. But anything that helps combat the worsening state of adolescent mental health must be for the good. Kids today face too much pressure, born of high societal expectations. They have to succeed in a materialistic society that exhibits all the values of a deranged psychopath; a society that, like any multinational corporation, only worries about ‘profit’ and ‘loss’. Nothing else matters a fig…

I think it’s very possible death created time to grow the things its going to kill…

To see in the life cycle of the caterpillar
The struggle of the soul
Towards immortality.

Ummm, work is calling me. No rest for the wicked, and I am very wicked…

We love WAR…

March 30, 2011

Well I keep hearing about cuts…cuts here, cuts there. Armageddon confronts us. Even that great British shibboleth Defense has to make savings.

Uuuummm. Strangely, even after the “cuts” Britain’s spending on defense will be almost 6% of total government expenditure. In real terms the defense budget 2010/2011 will be 11% up on 1997, representing the longest period of sustained growth since the 1980s.

Don’t believe it? See HERE.

Britain share of global military expenditure is 3.8%. Russia’s is 3.5%. Africa’s is 2%. Even after cuts the UK is the fourth biggest defense spender in the world.

Why?

We love WAR? Or the great British public are twats misguided? You Choose…

“Did you know that the worldwide food shortage that threatens up to five hundred million children could be alleviated at the cost of only one day, only ONE day, of modern warfare.”

Peter Ustinov
Actor, writer and director (1921-2004)

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd won’t be moving into the pop video market despite rumors to the contrary.

Sure, their stall at Aero India 2009 had playing on a big screen this Bollywood dance number – Israeli performers in full Bollywood costume singing in English about the potential for the Indo-Israeli defense trade relationship!

India is the number one customer when it comes to the Israeli defense industry – spending $1.5 billion a year! Israel has become India’s second most important supplier of arms and munitions (Russia’s still number one).

So with India intending to up their spend on munitions by an additional $40 billion over the next ten years, Israeli companies are preparing to do even more business with them – and this video is to help by building confidence between India and Rafael!

Ummm. See what you think?

Money well spent d’you think?

night-moves

Is there anyone out there, anyone at all, who can explain to me what our “objective” is in Afghanistan?

Before I go off on one, Y-fronts over my head, screaming down the street:

‘BRRRRROOOOOWWWWNNN…WHAT THE FECK YER DOOOOIN’?’

Is there somewhere a calm voice of reason that can explain what the hell British soldiers are doing in a shithole like Afghanistan? After all, the mighty armies of the USSR got their backsides well and truly kicked over there, remember (surely you do, we helped fund the Taliban and Bin Laden in their struggle against the evil ol’ Ruskies)?

Oh, yeah, before anyone brings it up like the dog’s feckin’ dinner, I know about “the need” to protect the (possible) oil and gas pipeline! So, British and US troops are out there because Union Oil of California proposed a pipeline from Turkmenistan to Afghanistan and the Indian Ocean port of Karachi? Is that it? The plan had to be abandoned ‘cause of the Taliban’s topsy-turvy, medieval and chaotic regime, but now it might just be a goer again? With the Taliban shoved onto the back foot, so to speak?

So what do the British politicians say about the situation? On Question Time the other evening the Conservative argument was (like the Government’s) we’re in there to win. If we pull out it will destroy any relationship that may exist between Britain and the US. Also it’ll lead to more terrorist attacks on Britain…

Why?

How many troops do Switzerland have over there? How many terrorist attacks have taken place on Swiss soil?

So, talk show host Trisha Goddard suggested the war might be “unwinnable”.

You reckon?

Now, never mind the morality (or total lack of same) of what we’ve done, the great British media, bless ‘em, make a big deal about Helicopters!

What? Are you feckin’ mad? Helicopters?

So the usual circus kicks off: the Prime Mentalist with all the sincerity of a stoat on methadone, says nonsense! Helicopters ( he means Chinooks, by the way…for the uninitiated, the argument is about transportation helicopters) have been increased by 60%!!!! WOW!! 60% is a lot of helicopters, isn’t it? So we now have ten (yes, TEN) of these ‘copters operating in Afganistan!

The media response is a comparison between Britain and the US of helicopters per head of soldiers in the war theatre – it’d actually be more to the point comparing the number of helicopters we have, to the number the Dutch have deployed! The US has always spent big time on their military, providing a veritable cornucopia of material for their use – especially in these imperialistic small wars (a left over from the nineteenth century that seems to have leaked into the twenty-first?).

Now, since the beginnings of time, the Generals of every nation in times of war never have enough! Not enough men, tanks, munitions, helicopters. Whatever. Offer the military two battalions of partially armed Salvation Army carol singers and they’d take ‘em. Hannibal sitting outside Rome with his army (the war more or less won), sent back to Carthage for more Elephants etc…and lost the war while he waited for them!

If Britain had ten times more helicopters, odds are the Taliban would be shooting ‘em down. This is from the Telegraph in April 2008:

“British troops in Afghanistan are being targeted by surface-to-air missiles supplied by Iran, a senior Army source said yesterday.

“Officers in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard are supplying hundreds of weapons, including the missiles, to Taliban insurgents, it is believed.

“Most worrying is the news that SA7 Strella anti-aircraft missiles have been supplied to the Taliban. The weapons are a serious threat to helicopters supplying more than 6,000 troops.

“It is not thought the Taliban are well trained in how to use the weapons most effectively. In southern Helmand yesterday they fired an anti-aircraft weapon at an American F18 fighter without hitting it.

“Other weapons being smuggled in include plastic explosives, anti-tank mines, AK47s, mortars, rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns.”

In March of 2009, US Intelligence released this information to the world’s press:

“IRAN is supplying the Taliban in Afghanistan with surface-to-air missiles capable of destroying a helicopter, according to American intelligence sources.

They believe the Taliban wants to use the SA-14 Gremlins missiles to launch a “spectacular” attack against coalition forces in Helmand, where insurgents claim to be gaining the upper hand.

“Although British and American helicopters operating in southern Afghanistan are equipped with defensive systems to deflect an attempted strike, the SA-14 can evade such counter-measures …

“Special forces have previously intercepted arms shipments from Iran that would have helped the Taliban intensify a roadside bombing campaign that has killed 40 British troops over the past 18 months, including three last week.

“However, coalition forces only became aware of the presence of SA14s two weeks ago when parts from two of them were discovered during an American operation in western Afghanistan.”

The British media argues for more transport helicopters to overcome the problem of ground based transportation convoys being “hit” by roadside bombs. Ultimately, it’ll make no difference to our casualty rate.

More to the point is the question: “Where is the Afghan national army?” (apparently there is significant drug abuse and incompetency in the Afghan National Army)

The problem is Afghanistan is a geographical construct – there is no national identity, because the countless indigenous tribes have loyalty to their chiefs and to the tribe. So, the “country” as such is almost “non-existent” (except on the maps of our military).

In highlighting and arguing about these things, the world and his wife are transformed into armchair generals. In doing so they miss the real point. Why did Britain invade Afghanistan in the first place? What right did we have to do that? Was it not a breach of International law? In which case why are we still there?

And if in its actions Britain isn’t guilty of “crimes against humanity”, then what actually is it we think we’re going to achieve…and how?

It strikes me at the moment that both Britain and the US are desperately looking for an “exit strategy”. So, if they can hammer the Taliban and just shut ‘em up for a couple of months or so…well, then they can hold some elections, hand over security to the Afghan Government and sod off sharpish…because everybody knows it’s not a war they can possibly win!