8 Line Poem Deconstructs 9/11

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“During the September 11 attacks in 2001, 2,977 people were killed, 19 hijackers committed murder–suicide, and more than 6,000 others were injured. The immediate deaths included 265 on the four planes (including the terrorists), 2,606 in the World Trade Center and in the surrounding area, and 125 at the Pentagon.”

Google Search • Saturday, September 11, 2021

On this 20th Anniversary of 9/11, every one of us needs to take a few moments to pay our respects to the nearly 3,000 innocent victims and their surviving families and friends; imagine the stunned horror of the 246 terrorized airline passengers / flight crews, who wound up earning their “wings”; once the wings of all four commandeered aircraft were no longer of any earthly use to anyone. We must also ensure that all who had dwelt and labored within the vicinity of each ground zero’s toxicity receive, at no cost to them, the best health care available; throughout their remaining time on Earth.

The worst tragedy of all, here, is how American Intel had amply forewarned then prez George W. Bush. As everything had all eventually panned out, he’d been afforded the luxury of five weeks advanced notice, in which time he could’ve done his very best to ground Osama bin Laden’s hijackers. Alas, “very best” rarely, if ever can truthfully describe Dubya’s demeanor.

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Dubya’s silver spoon birthright; was defect inborn!
As a lifelong empty suit, no glad rags could adorn!
Both raw power / prestige, were his form of porn!
Ergo, he flipped off his duties, in the oath he had sworn!

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When august alerts flashed; he dared red lights with scorn!
No anti-hijacking tactics! No plot thwarting thorn!
No alerts to the masses! No loud honking horn!
He gave Bin Laden the green light, on That Tuesday morn!

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The Wind of 120 Days / Change

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Being unable to actually, meaningfully converse with civilians who still call Afghanistan home, my understanding of their plight will be limited to conjecture; hopefully insightful, educated guessing. And, seeing how I’ve only had a scant seven days to sort out that godforsaken war’s tragic, abrupt, turn for the worst, this post, at best, should be viewed as a work in progress.

And plight is apt terminology, considering how, the Taliban toppled President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani’s administration; not unlike how the “Wind of 120 days” would slam into a house of cards; indeed, a most unwelcome wind of change.

Re my educational creds, I’m no heavily college degreed student of this particular region’s history; merely a man whose gut has oft proven trustworthy, at times, prescient.

And my gut reaction, right from the get-go, was that “President” George W. Bush’s invasion of Afghanistan was doomed to end precisely like it did! There’d be no way in Hell, that moron could ever bomb his way into nation building; i.e., into establishing an enduring, honest, level-headed, even-handed Democracy. And Hell, too, is apt terminology.

Let’s now try to look at this from my uncertain perception of the Afghans’ perspective.

• For starters, how could civilians not resent any superpower’s meddling; even by a nation that’s purportedly benign? What could ever be worse to eyewitness, first hand, than America’s ceaseless attempts to willy-nilly bomb their already imperfect homeland back to the stone age? Think about it. Oppressor W mindlessly maiming and murdering, to do what? Oust another oppressor such as the Taliban? An apt song couplet doth comes to mind:

“Meet the new boss
Same as the old boss”

Pete Townshend • Composer of “Won’t Get Fooled Again” • Full Lyrics Linked Here

• As for Americans training Afghan troops, did the generals actually expect their barked out orders, “Fight W’s war, Dammit!”, would be met with a resounding chorus of “Yessirs!”? Many of these new recruits would likely yell, “Yessir!” to Townshend’s very lyrics; i.e., shout, “No Sir!”, to being bossed around.

• Of course we must be fair, here, too. There had been some societal improvements, especially the gains made by females of all ages. But, seeing how defusing chronic, toxic masculinity can be problematic most anywhere in our world, why would Afghanistan be any different? Wherever a male fits into the Taliban hierarchy (if, indeed, anywhere), it’s highly unlikely that female liberation would wind up, high up on his to do list.

For now, for the sake of keeping this post mercifully short, I’ll limit this far from complete analysis to those three bullet pointed speculations above.

Suffice to say, other than one helluva, beyond repair, mucked up mess, George W. Bush wound up with nothing to show for the oceans of red blood and red ink he had needlessly spilt.

And, considering the Taliban’s brutal, sadistic nature, this wretched régime’s return to absolute power won’t find them in any particular hurry to right any of war criminal W’s unforgivable wrongs.

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Alternate Reality’s Rose Hath a Thorn

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Just to score brownie points with the orange DJT, history revisionists / propagandists, have been conveniently, completely forgetting how President Joe Biden inherited “President” George W. Bush’s boots on the ground, groundless, no-win Afghanistan War. And it is crucial that we do make that distinction ‘tween George and Joe.

There’s also need to honestly assess the primary cause and effect that led up to W’s war. To do so, will make it abundantly clear why that so-called prez had made Afghans his political pawns. To flesh that out, succinctly, W had to cover his sorry ass after the 9/11 attacks had caught him with his Commander-In-Chief pants down.

Here’s the skinny. Had W not ignored, his 08/06/2001 Presidential Daily Briefing; ominously titled: “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US”; had, instead, heeded this report’s dire warning of hijackings, he’d have had five weeks to, bare minimum, implement more rigorous airport / airline security. Had W done so…

A much rosier alternate reality would’ve materialized; one where Osama bin Laden’s hijacking plot, quite literally, had never gotten off the ground; and consequently, there would’ve been no need for the Afghanistan War, where 241K people perished (71K of them civilians).

Alas (long sigh), no rose is thornless…

While the Afghans would’ve avoided sociopath Bush’s inflicted death and suffering, they would’ve still suffered an abysmal quality of life under Taliban domination.

The tragic, heartbreaking reality is how, mere days ago, due to W’s abject failure to truly liberate them, the Afghans, once again, got stuck with the horrifying, inhumane Taliban’s oppression, anyway.

There are (at least) two certainties:

  • War Criminal George W Bush’s “invitation” to visit The Hague is nearly 20 years overdue.
  • Those who commit torturous and genocidal acts cannot claim any statutes of limitations.

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Dubya Owns the Afghanistan Debacle

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My bygone, middle school’s Social Studies instructor, H.M., taught me how critical thinking, in part, depends upon one’s ability to accurately sift thru the cause and effect aspects, of the situation at hand.

As of late, the media analysts / would-be strategists (of all political stripes) have been rehashing Afghanistan’s downfall. Considering these talking heads’ inconclusive hand wringing and worthless finger pointing, it’s my conclusion that their difficulties, in part, are based upon their inability to grasp how cause and effect actually interact. Let’s dig deeper.

Twenty Augusts ago, on the 6th, (then president) George W. Bush, (purportedly) took a gander at his Presidential Daily Briefing; that PDB ominously titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US”; that very document even envisioning commercial jet hijackings!

As everything eventually panned out, the recently installed prez had been granted / gifted an ample five week long heads up; i.e., to prepare in a prompt, proactive manner; to protect and defend the United States of America; to, ultimately, prevent needless human suffering and death.

Did W even lift a pinky finger to do so? NOPE! By the time 9/11 had rolled around, W’s leadership vacuum had managed to suck 19 of Osama bin Laden’s box cutter wielding terrorists into America’s airports and comfortably seat them aboard 4 jetliners. If things had been any worse, he probably would’ve served ’em breakfast, too.

Ergo, ObL’s predicted attacks wound up catching W with his Commander-In-Chief pants down, all of which horrified his handlers. However, it was not the attacks, themselves, which had formed worry lines on their mugs. What actually sent them reeling in panic mode boiled down to the Q:

How will we ever be able to cover our boss’s sorry ass; firm up his politically flaccid image?

Their eventual, concocted M.O. amounted to a diversionary scam. They’d instruct bush-leaguer W to, FIRST, fearmonger the gullible, non-critical thinking public and, NEXT, dupe these sheeple into blind acceptance of his vengeance seeking, “smoke out” Osama bin Laden (dead or alive), willy-nilly, batshit crazy crusade.

One wonders if they had ever considered flying a more brains over brawn approach up the flagpole; i.e., something akin to Operation Neptune Spear, which President Barack Obama would eventually approve (come 2011); the meticulously orchestrated, regimented operation, where U.S. Navy SEALS were able to finally track down and obliterate bin Laden (not that his death did much of anything to win W’s no-win War on Terror/make our world a safer place).

Anyway, seeing how W’s “smoke out” plan was never anything more than a CYA smokescreen, he had never actually intended to bring 9/11’s architect to justice. All his wranglers did manage to accomplish was snagging their boy his coveted second term. And, as is true with most other cookie cutter Republicans, clutching to power (and amassing obscene wealth) is all that ever really matters to them.

Alas, throughout W’s eight year reign of terror, he exploited the Afghans as his political pawns; used them as his punching bag; even waterboarded / tortured suspected enemies of his own making; while trying to cover it all up with his euphemistic catchphrase, “enhanced interrogation techniques”.

Abroad: W was, still is, guilty of [1] needlessly slaughtering 241,000 people, 71,000 of them civilians [read it and weep article located here], [2] stifling / snuffing out that nation’s culture, and [3] blasting the real estate / infrastructure to smithereens.

Domestically: To this very day, W’s fear generated, U.S. Patriot Act still bulldozes and buries our once-upon-a-time Constitutionally guaranteed personal freedoms and has pissed away TWO TRILLION FREAKIN’ DOLLARS; revenue that would’ve been far better spent on domestic programs to vastly improve Americans’ quality of life.

As bad as all of that already sounds, the repackaging and rebranding techniques, which served to refurbish W’s image, long ago, became canon within the Republican Party’s mucked up, political playbook.

You see, what those wranglers / spin doctors learnt during W’s Era, is that IF they could so readily groom an asshat, such as the ne’er-do-well George W. Bush; morph that imbecile into a pseudo conquering superhero, THEN such a coat of whitewash can also be easily slapped onto any subsequent, political wannabe stumblebum.

Case in point, in preparation for the 2024 Presidential Elections, image makeover (con) artists will be able to easily groom elitist Donald J. Trump; morph that insurrectionist fascist freak into a fake founding father figure.

Bottom lining it, George “Dubya” Bush’s negligence was, still is, and shall forever brand him the CAUSE of the EFFECT; better known as the War in Afghanistan! Dubya flat out owns that godforsaken debacle!

Had Dumbass Dubya properly and promptly reacted to his PDB’s dire warning and thwarted the 9/11 attacks, his pre-existing leadership vacuum would’ve never been strong enough to suck America into that two decades too long, no-win war! Hell, that war would’ve never even existed!

Regarding Bush’s dreadful character faults and deplorable deeds, be these mentioned above or not, on behalf of America, my heartfelt apology to all Afghans. I know what I’m about to type will be of no consolation to either you or me, but say it I must:

I never voted for him!

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Embattled Mixed Emotions

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As a pacifist, I concur with President Joe Biden’s decision to finally end George W. Bush’s ill-conceived War in Afghanistan; the projected exit date to fall on September 11, 2021; the 20th Anniversary of the NYC / DC / PA al-Qaeda attacks.

As a pragmatist, I know there’s little for the world to gain by America soldiering onward, endlessly, in that one specific war zone; especially considering how terrorism, by its very nature, knows no geopolitical boundaries; when new, terrorist training camps proliferate not unlike metastatic cancer cells; when any attempts at shutting them down is not unlike playing a bloody, deadly game of Whac-a-Mole.

As an ethicist, I also need to factor in the Pottery Barn, “You Break It, You Own It Rule”. Obviously, since W did his damnedest to break Afghanistan, unfortunately, that means that each of his presidential successors, have inherited the carnage. And, as such, there’s a moral and financial obligation to clean up all that W had mucked up.

The rub here is that when it comes down to any Wars on Terror, there are no easy exit strategies; as the reality of W’s nearly two decades long AND Russia’s one decade long no-win battles can both certainly attest to.

The problem began when brain dead W, in his futile attempt to “smoke out” Osama bin Laden, had resorted to boots on the ground overkill when, truth be told, a more refined, cogent approach would’ve sufficed; e.g. President Barack Obama’s deployment of the “United States Navy SEALs of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group (also known as DEVGRU or SEAL Team Six)” (quoted content copied / pasted from Google search).

Of course, that’s not to say there have been no gains within Afghanistan, in particular, we must consider the modest improvements re human rights; more specifically, women’s rights.

As an altruist, the very thought of the Taliban (or any other barbaric, moronic, misogynistic régime), muscling its way back into that embattled region is repugnant to me.

As a realist, I know that U.S. troops have been fighting no-win battles. So, how the hell could it ever be any different for the Afghani forces who will soon be left to fend for themselves?

As a kinda / sorta journalist, I find it absolutely unsettling to end a blog with a question, especially one that neither I nor anyone else can honestly answer in a hopeful manner. Long sigh.

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Sneaky Li’l Sh-ts

Back in 1980, during the Iran hostage crisis, on behalf of POTUS wannabe AND sneaky li’l shit Ronald Reagan, the private citizen and sneaky li’l shit William Casey, in flagrant violation of the 1799 Logan Act, undermined sitting President Jimmy Carter’s authority, by cutting a secret, quid pro quo deal with Iran. The Terms: Iran agreed to hold their American hostages until after the elections; thereby causing the voters to punish Democrat Carter and reward Republican Reagan. Soon after Inauguration Day, fraudulent president Reagan presided over the big payoff; namely, arranged for Israel to ship badass weaponry to Iran. The End!

Back in 2000, a corrupt, conservative bloc of U.S. Supreme Court judicial hacks blatantly denied Democrat POTUS wannabe Al Gore his legally requested recount of contested Florida ballots. Yep, the net effect was sneaky li’l shit judges had illegally elected sneaky li’l shit Republican George W. Bush. Scant months later, W, who was far more interested in the POTUS title, itself, than in actually doing that job’s heavy lifting, promptly flipped off his 08/06/2001 Presidential Daily Briefing, which had ominously forewarned of Osama bin Laden’s intent to nine-eleven America. Post attack, it was left up to W’s eager beaver handlers / image consultants to, somehow, rebrand / mutate that stick-figure, figurehead loser into some sort of caped, leotarded Super Hero (complete with codpiece). As such, little Georgie had risen from the Ground Zero ashes / rubble by 2004; at which time the voters had actually forgotten how W had let America down. Consequently, they rewarded that muck-up with a second term. The End!

Fast forwarding to 2020, bear witness to the sneaky li’l shit Republican and Fascist wannabe Donald J. Trump. Courtesy of journalist / author Bob Woodward’s phone interviews with Donny, we now know that the fake prez clearly understood, as early as January 2020, that the coronavirus pandemic would lay wholesale waste to American lives and livelihoods! YET, he repeatedly downplayed this deadly threat to humanity; didn’t even do the easy lifting to protect any of us (e.g., issuing a nationwide mask-up decree). His willful neglect allowed COVID-19 to go on a rampage; to the point where now, even HE has become infected by this scourge. So, will he hoodwink the voters into accepting the 215,000 Americans (and still counting), who’ve died on his watch? Will America’s electorate actually reward sneaky li’l shit Donald J. Trump another four or more years? Will this be The End?

History suggests such an outcome is more likely than not.

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Grim Truths re 9/11 & COVID-19

George W. Bush and Donald J. Trump, two of America’s worst presidents, ever, have much in common. Both…

• wanted the presidency’s title and power but not the responsibilities
• flipped off their advisors’ admonitions and PDBs¹ re a looming crisis
• pissed away valuable lead time / got caught with their knickers down
• caused far too many innocent people to needlessly suffer and perish
• morphed from candy-asses into (make-believe) combative badasses
• orchestrated unconstitutional power grabs to firm up flaccid images
• were rewarded with 2nd terms due to duped and ill-informed voters²

GWB’s deaths involved 9/11 and two utterly needless, endless, no-win wars.
DJT’s deaths (physical / fiscal) involve his ongoing, DIY COVID-19 pandemic.

19 years ago, on this very day, the 9/11 attacks’ official death toll was 2,977
Since 02/06/20, COVID-19’s reported stateside deaths (SO FAR) = 196,328

196,328 ÷ 2,977 = 66
218 ÷ 66 = 3.3

What do those computations mean?

• Those 196,328 deaths are equivalent to 66 9/11’s
• In the 218 days since 02/06/20, that’s one 9/11 every 3 days and 8 hours.

Back on 9/11/2001, re al Qaeda, my homeland’s mood was indignation.
Yet, on 9/11/2020, re COVID-19, the mood seems more like indifference.

 

Stay Safe at Home! Stay Publicly Masked! Stay Healthy!

 

¹Presidential Daily Briefing
²Sorry to say, we’re stuck with Dumb Donald for up to
another 25 years and… after that… Dumb Donald Jr.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yearning for a 9/10 World

 

Tomorrow it’ll be 18 years since the 9/11 terrorist attacks… since nearly 3,000 souls needlessly perished. What that breech of national security had actually proven is that who sits behind the Oval Office desk really, Really, REALLY does matter. Let’s explore this further by time tripping back to events circa the early 2000s.

• George W. Bush ascends the throne, owing to a corrupt rightwing Supreme Court majority ruling, which flat-out denies presidential wannabe Al Gore his legal right to a Florida ballot recount.

• In the role of the illegitimate prez, W soon realizes that his desire to be POTUS pales in comparison to his lust for that title.

• With such a lousy, lazy attitude, W totally flips off his August 6, 2001 Presidential Daily Briefing. What part of its dire, alarming, headlined warning does he not dig? Check it out…

Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in U.S.

• The ne’er-do-well prez proceeds to squander five weeks… doesn’t even lift a pinkie finger to beef up homeland security.

• The post 9/11 prez… in political panic mode… on the pretext of capturing ObL… plods onward to wage two, too little, too late, in the wrong “theater”, no-win wars. Along the way he even resorts to torturing / waterboarding the enemies of his own making.

• Next, W and his like-minded, legislative, fascist cronies… on the pretext of beefing up homeland security… all conspire to trot out the U.S. Patriot Act, which, like a vampire, promptly sucks the lifeblood from the body… i.e., the body of the U.S. Constitution.

• W’s legacy in the making? At home we witness the loss of Americans’ precious, sweet liberty. Abroad we discover the stench of war crimes / crimes against humanity and genocide… as well as the oceans of spilt red blood and red ink to wage wars in Afghanistan and Iraq… battles that do not even bring ObL to justice!

• So successful are W’s handlers that, in the “minds” of too many voters, they deem the dullard / coward incumbent a hero… so much so… they foolishly grant him a second term while denying his opponent… genuine war hero John Kerry, his victory.

For them to have bogusly deemed W to be presidential, only proves that some Americans can be groomed into accepting / empowering any disreputable, deplorable dunce imaginable. To prove my point, one need not look any further than the present-day Oval Office.

 

 

 

 

Fortune Cookie Blog (the war hawk)

 

A strutting, crowing chickenhawk recklessly provokes wars and orders other
people’s sons and daughters to fight and die. With no combat experience of
his own AND his turning a deaf ear to war heroes, he knows not the horrors
of war. We must turn a deaf ear to this cocky bird, who clucks up everything!

 

 

 

 

A Tale of Two Economies: Robust vs. Going Bust

 

The Best of Times? Trump oft crows excessively about the American economy… as if he, alone, made it a glowing success.

• To keep it all real, we need to acknowledge that, in the wake of George W. Bush’s Crash of 2008, it had been President Barack Obama’s adept, no nonsense leadership and problem solving skills that’d actually returned America to solvency.

The Worst of Times? Donny also incessantly implies that the economy is so fragile that it cannot even support an influx of asylum seekers ISO employment in the United States.

• To keep it all real, we need to acknowledge that the positions immigrants fill oft involve occupations that many Americans deem unappealing.

Hmm… one would think that were Donny’s glowing scenario true, he’d be able to supply enough jobs for everybody, right? So much so, that… other than to indulge his deplorable bigotry… there’d be no need for him to whine about immigrants.

So which economic picture is it? Robust? Going Bust?

True, in Trump’s past life as a so-called businessman, it’d been his avariciousness and recklessness, which had rendered him oblivious to his own oncoming, business failures / bankruptcies. Even so, in the here and now, even he has got to know that he presides over an unsustainable, smoke and mirrors economy that cannot, indefinitely, withstand this triple whammy…

[1] HIS ill-conceived, ill-timed trade war with China
[2] HIS reckless deregulation of the financial world
[3] HIS massive tax breaks for the wealthy which re-
boot the twice failed, trickle down Reaganomics

Sooner or later… long sigh… Trump will crash the American / global economies… at which time, that snake oil salesman will tuck tail, cut and run, and promptly dump HIS whole mucked up mess onto the Oval Office desk of his successor… probably a Democrat… who will possess genuine, adept, no-nonsense leadership that’ll successfully morph Donny’s Worst of Times into America’s Best of Times… AGAIN!