Friday, July 18, 2014

Friday Post

 Just in time for the week-end...

Yesterday, Malaysia Airlines flight MH 17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people aboard. A recording points to Russian separatists who, believing the air craft to be a Ukrainian plane, shot down the jet with a surface-to-air missile.

What comes out of this is not just enormous personal cost of human life sadly blown out of the sky but the complete lack of human empathy from Obama and Putin.

When Korean Airlines flight 007 was shot down in 1983, then-President Reagan addressed the American public for nearly seventeen minutes, calling the incident an "act of barbarism..." and even referenced families of the victims. He moved into action, calling for an emergency meeting at the UN (where Russia has a permanent seat which it used to veto the condemnation of the outrage) and conducted inquiries. Aeroflot could not operate flights to or from US air space. No apology from the Soviets was made, only statements defending their shooting down of what was clearly a passenger aircraft.

And now, this is what passes for shock and call to action:

It might be a tragedy?

How could blowing up eighty children not be a tragedy?

The day of the incident, Obama helped himself to a hamburger and a photo-op. He carried on with his fund-raising tour (as one can see from the video), as he did after four Americans were killed in Libya.

Is anyone seeing a pattern here, one that shows a complete lack of human feeling? How does one call an act of terrorism a sort-of tragedy as Obama did (again, see the video)? How does one bounce into campaigning mode as though the shooting down of this jet is just an afterthought? What kind of person would look at Obama after this and still believe he represents the presidency so well?

Putin's callousness does not quite match Obama's but it still is as jarring. Obama is a narcissist, a man-child with a singular mind. Putin's disregard for human life echoes the Soviet response to the downing of Korean Airlines flight 007: it happened, don't blame us, it was someone else's fault:

Russian President Vladimir Putin has blamed the Ukrainian government for the crash of a Malaysian Airlines jet that was shot down over eastern Ukraine, killing all 295 people on board.

The government in Kiev is responsible for the fighting in eastern Ukraine between government troops and pro-Russian rebel forces which caused the downing of the civilian aircraft, Putin said at a cabinet meeting last night, according to a transcript released by the Kremlin. Putin has repeatedly denied Russian involvement in the fighting in Ukraine. ...
"I want to point out that this tragedy wouldn't have happened if there was peace in this land, or at least if fighting hadn't resumed in the southeast of Ukraine," Putin said. "And undoubtedly, the state on whose territory this happened is responsible for this awful tragedy."

Typical Soviet infantilism. No wonder Russians can't shake off their bloody and stunted past.

This incident isn't a win for Putin as it gains him no further ground but it is not a loss for him, either. Where Europe, dependent on Russian oil, dares not to lift its head even to squeak out a condemnation, countries like Canada and Australia have done so. This was certainly a time to some some Reagan indignation.

What a sea change it is to see the leader of the free world- the ever-useless adolescent that Obama is- wallow behind, preferring to luxuriate in the air of celebrity than to be an actual adult and feel anger over murder and now see countries like Canada and Australia- hardly super-powers- step up to the plate.

Israel has started its ground invasion into Gaza:

Israeli troops pushed deeper into Gaza on Friday to destroy rocket launching sites and tunnels, firing volleys of tank shells and clashing with Palestinian fighters in a high-stakes ground offensive meant to weaken the enclave's Hamas rulers.

The assault opens a new, potentially extended and bloodier stage in the conflict following a 10-day Israeli campaign of more than 2,000 airstrikes against Gaza that had failed to halt militants rocket fire on Israeli cities. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he told his military to prepare for a possible "significant" expansion of the operation.

This is a measured response to perennial attacks on a legitimate state and its people.

Just clarifying that.

Oh, it looks like Omar Khadr isn't moving after all:

Omar Khadr will remain in a federal prison. 

The former Guantanamo Bay detainee has agreed to a stay of a decision by Alberta's top court that ruled he should be serving his sentence as a youth and be transferred to a provincial jail. 

His lawyers say he's willing to remain at the federal Bowden Institution in central Alberta because he's doing well there. 

Oh, I'm sure he is.

Oh, isn't this a pity?

About 100 protesters gathered at the New Brunswick legislature on Friday as the province's only abortion clinic shut its doors.

The Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton said it would perform its last abortions on Friday.

The private clinic has cited financial losses for the closure. However, more than $110,000 raised in a crowd-funding campaign may help the clinic to keep its lease and re-open sometime in the future should the province's laws become more accommodating.

(Sidebar: by pity, I mean a good thing because who needs this crap? Let its doors be shut forever.)

And now, wonderful things you can do with balloons.


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