Friday, April 23, 2004


Just got back from nearly a week's break at Arches National Park, and Moab Utah.

Moab, as in "Massive Air Ordinance Burst" from "W"'s "Shock and Awe" program. Notice how shocked and awed those Sunni and Shiite Iraqis are these days? Moab, as in "Mother of all Bombs", as in a clear-cut, unmistakable Biblical reference. After all, "W" is on a Crusade (the Second Children's Crusade, as it were).

The Biblical Moab was to the east of Sodom, southeast of the Dead Sea, in the land of present-day Jordan. Petra, which is a tremendous place, is in or near that Biblical Moab. It seems to me that the Utahans have a better claim to "Moab" than "W", since their Moab is geographically in the right direction from the Utah Jordan (rivers, towns and canals between Provo and Salt Lake City, similar to the Biblical Jordan being near the "central" areas of Jerusalem and Jericho); since they have a "Dead Sea" (the Great Salt lake, like the Dead Sea, has a much higher salt concentration than the ocean, though the elevations are greatly different); and since Utah is largely similar to the present-day Holy Land in climate and in some respects geography.

Moab. Mother of all bombs. Psychological warfare...

...military officials tell CNN that the MOAB is mainly conceived as a weapon employed for "psychological operations." Military officials say they hope the MOAB will create such a huge blast that it will rattle Iraq troops and pressure them into surrendering or not even fighting. Officials suggest perhaps the Iraqis might even mistake a MOAB blast for a nuclear detonation.

That's great. Let's make sure we have other countries mistakenly assume we're using nuclear weapons...see Wilk's previous blog on Rogue States!

Interestingly, there is another military/Moab connection. A native of Moab told us that the military used to fly planes low over Arches National Park, but the shock (and awe?) waves were damaging the monuments and arches. Seems shock and awe often leads to self-inflicted wounds.


Sunday, April 18, 2004

Rogue State 

Vulf's suggestion that the US is becoming a rouge state is apt. Remember when it was easy to tell which side was the wrong one? All you had to do was to wait to see which side the Soviet Union or Iran supported and the situation was clear. Now it seems you have to wait to see with whom the US sides. I don't like the idea of standing alone shoulder to shoulder with Israel: I agree that Sharon is a terrorist. While it could be true that only the Sure it could be true that

A key lesson - and perhaps the most important one - of the Holocaust in my view is that a persecuted group needs to have its own framework or even country to protect its rights given that its rights were never protected in history. In short - get your own state if your rights cannot be protected in the state you are in. Jews learned this lesson well. Too bad the Israeli government doesn't think the same right applies to Palestine. But Palestians should take lessons from Gandhi and not Hamas.


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