Monday, November 19, 2012


I hope you watched Ken Burns' "The Dust Bowl" on KET last night, and part 2 tonight...if not, catch the repeats to come later on. This is a little known weather catastrophe of the early '30's in the Midwest..though the East was not immune..and a tragedy almost entirely caused by man's errors.  (Today we are still debating man's role in global warming, though there is no debate there is global warming. Perhaps we have learned something from the Dust Bowl).
If you want to see a short version of Burns' four hour epic, you can find the 25 minute "Plow that Broke the Plains" on YouTube (with a great score by Virgil Thompson)---the best documentary on the Dust Bowl til now..and produced (for $6000!) by a young West Virginian, Pare Lorentz.  Well worth the time.
The Middle East is aflame as I write this, without knowing where we are heading. Maybe a land war. I do not understand Hamas's reason for starting all this by firing rockets into Israel. It knows it cannot win such an exchange, and another invasion by the best army in  the Middle East will have the same result..defeat for Hamas and needless victims on both sides.
There is no such thing as a "surgical air strike", be it bombs or rockets or drones. Innocents suffer as they have in Iraq,Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Pakistan and Afghanistan..all those from U-S drones. One of the things I hold against President Obama is that he has drastically increased our use of drones...which violates every canon of international law, sovereignity, and the rule of law...making us prosecutor, judge and jury..all based on "intelligence" about "suspects." I hope the same intelligence minds that brought us the WMD fiasco in Iraq, where thousands died, aren't involved here.
Even if terrorist "suspects" are involved, there is a way to bring them to justice that follows our judicial traditions...not by dealing death from the skies which, inevitably means the killing of innocent others. There are pictures all over the internet of these innocents, which asks the question the current issue of "Counterpunch" asks..."Is this child dead enough for you?"
Remember these actions were taken by the Obama administration in our name and financed with our money! This was a topic I heard mentioned only once in the debates, when it should have been front and center in any foreign policy discussion.
Israel and Hamas will fare no better; parents and children will be killed on both sides as the drones watch and the rockets fall.  And don't believe those statistics about Iron Dome bringing down most rockets, and averting innocent deaths...(remember back to the Patriot misssle kill rate of a decade ago..highly exaggerated..said to be  90% when actually more nearly 25%).
As I write, frantic efforts are going on to avert expansion.
Blessed are the Peacemakers. May their tribe increase and succeed quickly so the world may have a true Thanksgiving.
I'm just sayin'...

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