Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 04, 2019

The Times' Middle East Columnist Fails On Basic Facts

Ladies and Gentlemen, we present the Middle East columnist of the 'paper of record', Tom Friedman:

    Iran Is Crushing Freedom One Country at a Time

Having covered the Middle East my entire adult life, I’m seeing some trends emerging there that I’ve never seen before.
The Iranian ayatollahs even had to largely shut down their own internet to prevent the domestic rebellion from spreading. Ever since the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2002, Iran has never wanted to see a stable, multisectarian, secular democracy emerge in Baghdad, because then Iranian Shiites would be asking why Iraqi Shiites get to live freely and they don’t.


For the record. The invasion of Iraq began on March 19 2003, not in 2002. Friedman should know that. He and his paper were major pro-war propagandists in the run up to it.

During the first three years of the war Friedman went on to predict 14 times that 'success' in Iraq would come within the "next six months", a period now known as a Friedman unit.

If the New York Times and its main Middle East columnist can not even get that date right what else do they get wrong?

A cursory read of Friedman's anti-Iranian column suggests that the answer is "everything".


Posted by b on December 4, 2019 at 13:34 UTC | Permalink

next page »

"multisectarian" =/= "secular" They are rather opposites.

Also, "multisectarian" is the not really democracy, which literally means the rule of the city wards, i.e., the people living in a given area, as opposed to the tribes---or sects---making pacts with each other as corporate bodies.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Dec 4 2019 13:39 utc | 1

Well another proof that just because you are brain dead, does not prevent you from working at The Grey Lady. Then again most grey ladies or gentlemen for that matter have crossed over so that not only the brain is dead.

Posted by: Tick Tock | Dec 4 2019 13:46 utc | 2

Duly noted: "the not really democracy" is my new phrase of the day!
This is exactly what one would expect from's clear where his loyalties lie.

Posted by: Chevrus | Dec 4 2019 13:53 utc | 3

Mr Friedman wrote: "I’m seeing some trends emerging there that I’ve never seen before."

The trends have been on full display for years: a steady, carefully planned destabilization and destruction of the region to keep out the Chinese, who have no troops to send in to protect their commercial interests. Friedman has never seen these until now? Logical: being brain dead obviously also means being blind.

The Grey Lady = The Grey Whore

Posted by: RJPJR | Dec 4 2019 14:09 utc | 4

It was never about fostering “secular democracy”, rather national security and the pursuit of power. Washington defends a theocracy as quickly; whatever serves its interest. History warns imperial power struggles have resulted in two world wars – so far.

Posted by: peter mcloughlin | Dec 4 2019 14:22 utc | 5

Here's the quote that sums up Friedman better than any other. (from a column written in 2004)

“The war in Iraq is the most important liberal, revolutionary US democracy- building project since the Marshall Plan. It is one of the noblest things this country has ever attempted abroad.” (New York Times)

Friedman, what a sick man.

Posted by: plantman | Dec 4 2019 14:28 utc | 6

If you're impressed with Thomas L. Friedman, you haven't seen the Washingtonian Thomas L. Friedman yet:

Trump has done the world a favor by highlighting China’s communist regime

Both are conneceted. After the fall of the USSR, the Americans solidified in their minds that "liberalism" and/or "democracy" (i.e. capitalism) was the socioeconomic manifestation of human nature. This wrong assumption gave birth to American "social engineering" modus operandi in the Middle East beginning in 2003.

Posted by: vk | Dec 4 2019 14:32 utc | 7


Sliced and diced deftly, and served cold.

Excellent. Brevity becomes the topic.

Friedman lost his mojo decades ago.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Dec 4 2019 14:54 utc | 8

@ Red Ryder | Dec 4 2019 14:54 utc | 8 (Friedman etc)

When an obvious fraud and transparent lies are the best they can do, it's a sure sign of desperation. Rather disagreeable prospect as it's an indicator of fear and panic. The NYT article(s) employ the Appeal to Emotion. When that's seen in a putative "news" article it is self-evident that it is propaganda of some sort - they have revealed an unstated agenda. It is always so. Genuine news (and competently written propaganda) avoid this defect. It's a black flag. Appeals to emotion often are useful though, as distraction from reality..."Hey! look here!" echo of 1914

WASHINGTON (NNS) (NNS) -- The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group (ABECSG) completed a scheduled transit through the Strait of Hormuz and into the Arabian Gulf Nov. 19. (right under the guns, dangling meat on a hook)

and...presstv >

Iran, Russia, China to hold joint naval drills on Dec. 27: Iran Navy chief. “At the present time, the Iranian Army and the Iranian naval forces are resolute in their collaboration with China,” Khanzadi said. “Strategic goals have been defined at the level administrations, and at the level of armed forces, issues have been defined in the form of joint efforts.”.

(but it was this part that seems vital "international strategic force")

> "General Yuanming, for his part, praised Iran’s Navy as “an international and strategic force,” and said Beijing believed in a boost of bilateral ties between the two countries’ naval forces and called for a hands-on sharing of knowledge in the fields of education, technicalities and providing information.

The Chinese official also said the upcoming joint naval drills are a show of unity between Iran, China, and Russia.

Posted by: Walter | Dec 4 2019 15:08 utc | 9

who was arrested ?

Democracy is the right of all citizens to change their government at any time when they feel the government is not appropriate to their needs (also called the right of self determination and more fully made clear in the Declaration of Independence); to change the government should only take a majority vote of the governed[ratification]; its the threat of that vote that serves to keep those who governed from becoming dictators.

Democracy is a two way street, it demands an interactive dialogue between governors and the governed. The right of the persons governed by the government to be sincerely listened to by the governors and the obligation of the entire government to stay informed about the petitioners demands is basic to democracy..

Apparently the leadership in Iran has stated that its people are free (without license or issue of permit it seems) to protest all they want, but according to the announcement they are not free to engage in violence or destruction of person or property.

I suggest that governments have a duty to protesters, to allow them to protest (without requirement of license or permit) and the duty to engage the protesters in dialog sufficient to satisfy that all demands presented have been clearly heard by not only the government but also by the governed public (and that expression of protest needs to be done with sufficient clarity that it accurately conveys the conditions which generate the grievance(s) and the change the petition seeks should be fully spelled out and both the conditions and the change should be agreed as accurately stated to the satisfaction of both sides) so that all parties concerned (scope of the petition) have a fully disclosed and explained understanding of what the issue is all about.

Governments should then be obliged to answer in published writing, a step by step reply, address to the petitioners and to the elements in their petition, a narrative which addresses each element in the petition and which explains how the government will proceed with respect to each element in the petition?

Amendment I of the Constitution of the United States of America (known as part of the Bill of Rights essentially) says in part:
Congress shall make no law .. abridging the freedom of speech; or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Apparently Iran has rounded up and arrested the protesters that did the damage. It is interesting to see who was arrested. check it out

Posted by: snake | Dec 4 2019 15:45 utc | 10

You don't get to stenograph on ME for NYT for that length of time by thinking for oneself.

A tool of policy, not a reporter of it.

Posted by: Michael Droy | Dec 4 2019 16:00 utc | 11

Any relation to Milton, one wonders...?

Posted by: Jon_in_AU | Dec 4 2019 16:02 utc | 12

Browser often suggests NYT articles.
Never bother to read them.
Pure nonsense!
When one organization is so consistently incorrect it is not an accident.

Posted by: Sbin | Dec 4 2019 16:14 utc | 13

There are a number of writers whose articles ought to be trashed as soon as their name is seen on the byline as they're proven to be 100% unreliable, which is being quite tactful. And that's all the comment space I'll devote to such a scumbag and utterly worthless human.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 4 2019 16:17 utc | 14

I wrote this comment earlier in a different thread and I stand by it, I think we will see a major false flag in the Gulf soon to launch an all out attack on Iran by the Zionists. The unrest of recent week was triggered to create the necessary casus belli for Iran to supposedly 'lash out' irresponsibly and irrationally. Fortunately it failed to cause much traction but that won't stop them.

Saudi-Arabia's initial Aramco IPO has concluded now so they got some cash, the US budget bill has been postponed conveniently until December 20, in case something happens beforehand they can hike 'defense' spending now. Then you get articles such as this one with Pentagon officials warning Iran may do something stupid soon...

This would fall in line with their phony story of Iran attacking a refinery in Saudi-Arabia. I don't believe it and I don't even think it was the Houthis, it was to prepare people for something far worse and showcase Iran as aggressive.

The US Aircraft Carrier Abraham Lincoln is still in the waters of the Gulf and just left Bahrain after a port call there. There is no real reason for the ship to be there other than to expose it to a possible Iranian attack. All other carriers are still safely away although the Truman that was supposed to relieve the Lincoln but got delayed due to 'electrical problems' is now in the Mediterranean.

I look for 12/12/2019 (2+1+9 = 12). Exactly 6,666 days after 9/11 and the Lincoln is part of the carrier strike group 12. Numbers matter to them so much,....impeachment and UK elections are the distractions leading up to this.

Let's keep praying that I am wrong but I am afraid it doesn't look good.

Posted by: Alexander P | Dec 4 2019 16:29 utc | 15

@karlofi, 14: that last sentence is the best qualifier of Friedman. If only it could have some effect.

Posted by: Ernesto Che | Dec 4 2019 16:30 utc | 16

The New York Post that in 2016 had a clown face of Trump on the cover is now praising Trump's Iran and ME policy and critical of Congress for overshadowing and missing the unique opportunity being offered by Trump's success and progress in Iran.

That alone speaks volumes of what Trump really is and what he's up to. I'm not going to post the disgusting Tablet opinion/article that inspired such effusive support for Trump in the NYP. It reeks of Ziocon zealousness and trash propaganda which I refuse to give more attention to than it deserves.

However, it did remind me yet again of just how necessary and crucial the impeachment and removal of Trump is if only to stop him in his tracks on his rabid pursuit of regime change and potential war in Iran!

If, as Nitwityahoo claimed at the time, the Clinton impeachment/Monica (unfortunately) helped spare the Zionist farm from (allegedly) being signed away by Clinton's peace deal efforts at the time, then the Trump impeachment is critical to preventing Zionists from expanding the farm!

Never mind that Trump deserves to be impeached for multiple VALID reasons. If coincidence, or better yet, serendipidity, enters into the impeachment karmic equation to spare Iranians from years of misery as witnessed in Syria and Iraq, THEN, G-speed and bless the impeachment!!!

Trump is a Zionist STOOGE as proven by multiple acts of foreign meddling, bullying and use of tyranny and oppression to incite regime change. That is incontrovertible fact with Trump's multiple ongoing foreign interventions; the biggest goal and prize being Iran.

The removal of Trump is the most necesssary good and justice required at this time and of paramount importance to the well-being of this planet.

Posted by: Circe | Dec 4 2019 16:31 utc | 17

The headline says it all and, to be accurate, needs to be changed to


Global private finance empire faced by the US is the aggressor agains Iran, China, Russia, Venezuela, Bolivia, Cuba, Syria, Yemen, North Korea, and the list goes on and on.....soon to include parts of the EU.

Friedman is a textual whore who is projecting onto empire enemies exactly what empire is doing to other countries.

I am glad to read in comments that others think like I do that the situation will blow up, literally and/or figuratively before the next US (s)election.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 4 2019 16:49 utc | 18

@15 Alexander P

I wrote this comment earlier in a different thread and I stand by it, I think we will see a major false flag in the Gulf soon to launch an all out attack on Iran by the Zionists. The unrest of recent week was triggered to create the necessary casus belli for Iran to supposedly 'lash out' irresponsibly and irrationally. Fortunately it failed to cause much traction but that won't stop them.

As there is mounting desperation among rabid Zionists that Congress seize on the extraordinary opportunity that Trump's hostile Iran policy has instigated before it's too late or Trump is removed, then there is the lurking threat that Zionists or Trump will do just about anything nefarious to exploit this moment and Trump specifically to sabotage impeachment to hold on to power for his personal aggrandizement and to benefit Zionism and his Zionist patrons simultaneously.

@18 Kashoggi's Ghost

And Trump has taken it a step further; protecting MBS's ass.

Friedman lost his mojo decades ago.

Posted by: Red Ryder @8

TF, a Zionist hack, had mojo at some time??? News to me!

Posted by: Circe | Dec 4 2019 17:18 utc | 19

Mr. Friedman is a "fantasy" writer, his old posts on our then unfolding, and now fully arrived - global neoliberal free-trade capitalist paradise - constituting exhibit A. Fantasy writers don't have to deal with facts, or the real world, and Mr. Friedman studiously avoids both in all of his writing and "analysis." Just saying.

Posted by: Gary Weglarz | Dec 4 2019 17:35 utc | 20

I'm only joking, but really b. you must have had an episode of laziness picking on Friedman - the easiest target on earth. He and his paper are truly pathetic.

Posted by: Babyl-on | Dec 4 2019 17:38 utc | 21

Oh come now, the next thing we know you'll be telling us Krugman isn't a reliable voice on economics...

(They have quite the stable of pundits, don't they? Brooks is a piece of work too.)

Posted by: AshenLight | Dec 4 2019 17:45 utc | 22

effing imbeciles like this fried turkey asshole has helped exterminate the Original christian followers of Christ from the middle east. And he writes articles blaming others for the monstrosities committed by him and his ilk.. When Jesus comes again I hope he crucifies such cretins by their balls all the way from jerusalem to new amsterdam.. Best example is mosul a christian city now devoid of any christians.. Or hiroshima..

Posted by: Igor Bundy | Dec 4 2019 18:01 utc | 23

snake @10

MMM...How did the NYC police and authorities (never mind the US Congress) treat, act toward the protestors in the Occupy movement? Or those in Seattle, Washington State, during the WTO meeting? At Kent State and Jackson universities? In Ferguson, MO? Selma, AL? (All for example - and you can go back in US history further still and see that strikes, protests were more often than not dealt with brutally.) Gently? In a restrained and respectful manner? Did the governing authorities (ruling elites) listen to, take note of these (and those of other protests in this country, never mind those going on in France) protestors demands with respect, provide written answers? Not to my knowledge.

As for Thomas Friedman - a shill for Occupied Palestine, i.e. known as Israel. And how often does he actually visit, for example, Iran? Iraq? Talk with ordinary people - not the bourgeoisie of those countries, who often, in the case of Iran, certainly, pro-Shah, and pro-the USA.

As usual he talks out of his a*** (Brit spelling).

The claptrap about Iran and these protests, the genuine, peaceful ones and the violent western sponsored ones spewed by NPR and the BBC World Service would have us believe that a) the only grievances the poorer sections of Iranian society (and Iraqi for that matter) are all the result, in Iran's case, of the gas price hike (they never, ever mention what the rise in this tax was intended for). Not even a whisper about the US draconian economic sanctions (siege warfare) and their dreadful effects on the lives and livelihoods of the Iranians (or Venezuelans, for that matter) is ever emitted over the airwaves here. No - the dire straits the populations of Iran (and Venezuela) are in are solely due to what the Iranian (and Venezuelan) government is doing/not doing.

As if economic sanctions were no more than a mosquito bite on the besieged population; as if such sanctions are not a war crime, illegal and more than that - immoral, unethical: amoral.

Posted by: AnneR | Dec 4 2019 18:01 utc | 24

Friedman lost ALL credibility several years ago, when MBS (Saudi Prince) paid him to go to Saudi Arabia and say 'good things' about him and Saudi Arabia. His column on his trip was a total joke, and a lot of people called him out on it. He has gone from some very decent future forecasting to becoming a complete journalist prostitute. Its embarrassing really. And, the New York times knows better. Its very clear what he is and has become. Now, I am not saying Iran's Mullahs are saints, but the situation in Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen etc. are a lot more complex and Iran is NOT the only bad actor in the region. In fact, I was in a cab just yesterday where the cab driver was Lebanese and he had nothing but good things to say about Iran and Iranians in Lebanon. He said roads, clinics, etc. were ALL built by Iran's government to help Lebanon recover from many decades of war (that by the way had NOTHING to do with Iran). Its very complex, and Friedman is a whore.

Posted by: ayatoilet | Dec 4 2019 18:43 utc | 25

Thomas Friedman is almost certainly the single most overrated pundit writing in the English language, and possibly in any language. How could he have been wrong about so many crucial matters and yet retain his post as the "star" of the "New York Times" op-ed page? Well, the answer is that Freidman is a highly useful tool of the politico-economic establishment. As such, his job at the foremost establishment mouthpiece is as secure as it could possibly be.

Posted by: Rob | Dec 4 2019 18:46 utc | 26

@ Posted by: AshenLight | Dec 4 2019 17:45 utc | 23 who wrote

Oh come now, the next thing we know you'll be telling us Krugman isn't a reliable voice on economics...

LOL!!!! You almost made me spew my breakfast onto my keyboard....

Unfortunately, Krugman is not alone among those in the US that call themselves economists. The first rule of being one is total disregard for the role global private finance plays behind the curtain. I occasionally frequent a web site called Angry Bear that posts about "economics" sorts of things and has one poster there that I respect because of their understanding about how Social Security Insurance got screwed and what should be done to fix it....give it back to the actuary folk. That said, I have occasionally written about the global private finance folk behind the curtain in comments there and am totally ignored.

The New York Times is not the only source for failure of basic facts in our world.....

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 4 2019 18:49 utc | 27

The invasion and destruction of Iraq began on August 2nd 1990. The USA has been continuously at war with the Iraqi people since that time. Thomas Friedman is a propagandist in the lines of Joseph Goebbels and Edward Bernays. His mission is narrative control and has nothing to do with reality.

Posted by: goldhoarder | Dec 4 2019 18:49 utc | 28

It's OK AnneR, you can say arse here, or anything else. I truly like this bastard, mongrel language called English, because if you can't express yourself adequately within it, then you're just not trying very hard. My choice of description for Mr. Friedman would be a rather arcane phrase in today's lexicon: "scurrilous knave."

Posted by: vinnieoh | Dec 4 2019 18:54 utc | 29

My guess: Not factually incorrect but a slip of the tongue.

Friedman was probably told to start propaganda operations in 2002.

So, for him, the war began in 2002.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 4 2019 19:08 utc | 30

In 2003 Friedman provided the Bush/Cheney regime with full support fort the raid on Iraq. He wanted to have France thrown out of the UN SC and replaced with India. A clear case of megalomania. Just for the record.

Posted by: mk | Dec 4 2019 19:08 utc | 31

@26 ayatoilet

While I agree with some of what you wrote; your moniker stinks!

Posted by: Circe | Dec 4 2019 19:08 utc | 32

I'm ambivalent; I think it's helpful to expose the malignant mendacity of Establishment tools like Friedman, but I also agree it's like shooting fish in a barrel.

Friedman may make a positive impression upon geopolitical neophytes, but anyone with a modicum of perspicacity and critical thinking will soon see through his repetitious, supercilious clichéd shtick.

I can't bring myself to read the linked article, so I'll only wonder aloud if it contains his signature observations about the "Arab Street", buttressed with his obligatory anecdotal seasoning of supposedly chance encounters with ordinary citizens, e.g. cabdrivers or waitstaff, who serendipitously trigger profound insights.

And, like ayatoilet 26, I hark back to Friedman's sycophantic adulation for Saudi Prince Bonesaw. I paraphrase from memory, but Friedman raved that during his intimate one-on-one interview, MBS kept him up all night with his firehose... of ideas. Maybe it's the 1980s porn-star mustache, but I got a definite homoerotic vibe-- not that there's anything wrong with it!

Once again, I mournfully report that my advanced-degreed progressive-liberal relatives, exemplars of the Amerikan intelligentsia, have religiously subscribed to the NYT for decades. They implicitly respect and trust the Friedmans and Krugmans, and lap up the consent these charlatans are paid to manufacture.

Posted by: Ort | Dec 4 2019 19:34 utc | 33

The NYT is on fire today:

Of All the Efforts to Defend Trump, This Conspiracy Theory Is the Worst

President Trump and his defenders simply won’t stop playing into Russia’s hands by promoting the debunked conspiracy theory that Ukraine hacked the 2016 election in an effort to sabotage his candidacy.

Posted by: vk | Dec 4 2019 19:39 utc | 34

psychohistorian @28--

When you watch the video with Hudson & Ellen Brown, Hudson says the Times ought to hire an economics writer that understands economics and how money's created, Krugman being a grand failure at that job. Indeed, the NY Times is no longer going to be italicized by me as news outlets are usually entitled since what it does is produce Orwellian everted news which is the task of BigLie Media. I'd say it's more like the Wall Street Journal in its overall mission than even the Journal, which actually publishes accurate news items. The Times plays its part in BigLie Media's echo chamber very well as that task is to turn hearsay and falsehoods into "facts" since they were mentioned in by other "reputable" sources so they must be true--Wordsmithing Propaganda 101.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 4 2019 19:49 utc | 35

Here's a testimony by late Consortium News founder, Robert Parry, about "The Madness of NYT's Tom Friedman", dated April 10, 2013.
Investigative journalist Robert Parry knew what he was talking about. Here's an extact about Friedman and Syria (written 04/2013) :

To Friedman, Bashar al-Assad is simply “Syria’s mad leader,” not a secular autocrat representing Alawites and other terrified minorities fearing a Sunni uprising that includes armed militants associated with al-Qaeda terrorists and promoting Islamic fundamentalism.

And an anthology of Thomas Friedman's most salient productions would not be complete without his 2003 op-ed "Chiken à la Iraq" (03/2003) in which, in order to push for war with Iraq, he used the powerful argument of wondering who, of G.W.Bush or Saddam Hussein, would chicken out first, as if all it was about was some futile teenager contest!! Simply egregious, when some estimates speak of as much as two and a half million Iraqi deaths since the 2003 invasion!!

Posted by: Red Corvair | Dec 4 2019 20:00 utc | 36

b-does a great job regularly pointing to the lies and inaccuracies published as news on western media, specialty the NYT. He is doing a meticulous, well one job publishing and eroding whatever left of their credibility, the real free world should thank him for doing that.
But I as a reader of MOA ,will not even waste my click to open these western propaganda outlets, they don’t deserve the credit for click traffic.

Posted by: Kooshy | Dec 4 2019 20:11 utc | 37

He probably just slipped up, he was thinking about the covert ops in 2002 that he wasn't supposed to mention.

Posted by: Keith McClary | Dec 4 2019 20:26 utc | 38

Friedman is a known liar. NYT infamous for its kickstarting war on iraq with fake news Iraq WMDs
the war for israel continues

Posted by: brian | Dec 4 2019 21:01 utc | 39

Matt Taibbi has written about the incredibly idiotic writing of Thomas Friedman (and his crazy nonsensical metaphors) for years. If you search you can probably find dozens of Taibbi articles on the subject.


Posted by: SteveK9 | Dec 4 2019 21:20 utc | 40

To be fair, in July 2002, 72,000+ US special ops personnel were mobilized to deploy for an invasion of Iraq around the end of July, beginning of August time frame. The op would require support from elements inside Iraq. The op was silently cancelled and the WMD BS road show began. My thinking is that the "fifth column" inside Iraq had been exposed and eliminated.

The author may be signaling, or let it slip, that he knows something not generally known.

Posted by: dave | Dec 4 2019 21:38 utc | 41

Gee, kinda' amazing that old washed up hacks like Friedman keep getting published, and that his lies fool a new class of morons...

Posted by: ben | Dec 4 2019 21:44 utc | 42

If only Iran could have the kind of freedom Bolivia enjoys today or Iran enjoyed under the Shah. It could become a "moderate" state like Saudi Arabia and have good relations with Israel. It could spend its wealth on scaled down American weapons.

Posted by: Edward | Dec 4 2019 21:52 utc | 43

An oldie but goodie

The Imperial Messenger: Thomas Friedman at Work - a takedown by Belén Fernández (2011)

And "White Man's Burden" (2003)

"Actually, the Iraq war is a kind of Jenin on a huge scale. Because in Jenin, too, what happened was that the Israelis told the Palestinians, We left you here alone and you played with matches until suddenly you blew up a Passover seder in Netanya. And therefore we are not going to leave you along any longer. We will go from house to house in the Casbah. And from America’s point of view, Saddam’s Iraq is Jenin. This war is a defensive shield. It follows that the danger is the same: that like Israel, America will make the mistake of using only force …"

“Friedman laughs: I could give you the names of 25 PEOPLE (all of whom are at this moment within a five-block radius of this office) who, if you had exiled them to a desert island a year and a half ago, the Iraq war WOULD NOT HAVE happened.”

Posted by: Yonatan | Dec 4 2019 21:55 utc | 44

No country's government has done more to prevent a democratic form of government appearing in Baghdad than America's.

Posted by: Vonu | Dec 4 2019 22:04 utc | 45

You had me at Tom Friedman, pro CIA/Saudi/Zionist warmongering shill par excellence

Posted by: Et Tu Brute | Dec 4 2019 22:12 utc | 46

>The invasion and destruction of Iraq began on August 2nd 1990.
>The USA has been continuously at war with the Iraqi people
>since that time.
>Posted by: goldhoarder | Dec 4 2019 18:49 utc | 29

I suspect the US policy goal was that Iraq and Iran were suppose to destroy each other, but the war between them ended too soon, in August 1988. I also suspect that US subsequently attacked Iraq two years later for their failure to destroy Iran (and themselves in the process).

Uncle Sam still wants to destroy Iran, of course, but it is now too late for them to attack, unless US wants to take on Russia and China at the same time:

Iran, Russia, China to hold joint naval drills on Dec. 27: Iran Navy chief

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Dec 4 2019 22:18 utc | 47

In response to post #17 by "Circe".
Sure, get rid of Trump. But then you get PENCE!
Not an improvement to say the least.

Posted by: Capn Mike | Dec 4 2019 22:21 utc | 48

I'm sure that if hundreds of thousands of people decided to march on Capitol Hill with torches and pitchforks, one of the first people to urge the shutdown of the Internet throughout the US would be one Thomas L Friedman. And he would do it in the blink of an eye, without batting his own.

You have to wonder what principles Friedman holds that motivate his writing and his op-eds.

Yonatan @ 45: I suppose Friedman didn't include himself as one of those 25 people, did he?

Posted by: Jen | Dec 4 2019 22:22 utc | 49

"If you don’t read the daily newspapers you are uninformed. If you do read them, you are misinformed." - Mark Twain

Ignorance is like a virus that is passed on from host to host.

Posted by: Dick | Dec 4 2019 22:30 utc | 50

Years ago one of my favourite pastime was reading Ahmed Amr over at ripping apart NYT and Friedman on a regular basis. Amr ceased to write many years ago, but his site is still online.

Even today you might enjoy his sharply penned articles.

Posted by: Das Kommentariat | Dec 4 2019 22:46 utc | 51

plantman @#6
you got that right. thanks for the gem of a quote by friedman (rather shocking if you ask me) and your comment on how sick this guy is

Friedman's one of the biggest cheerleaders of US wars, interventions, coup d'etats, secret operations, drone strike, and sanctions against poor third world countries, in the entire post World War II western history.

he's a scoundrel, a rogue, a blackguard and a liar...... and a pro-zioinst hack for Israel

The man's a disgrace, as is the NYT for its consistent (pro-US) war mongering since its inception

Posted by: michaelj72 | Dec 4 2019 23:38 utc | 52

Now US considers to send an additional 14,000 troops to middle east according to the WSJ. You guys still don't think war with Iran is imminent after the other things I pointed out in my earlier comment? I wish of course to be wrong, but the signs are increasing and why not now, a war has always helped a running president.

Posted by: Alexander P | Dec 4 2019 23:46 utc | 53

Not a good day for the Fat Boy at the hearings.
But his stupidity in Europe is entertaining—-
Late Stage capitalism might not be fun, but it is engaging.

Posted by: Duncan Idaho | Dec 4 2019 23:50 utc | 54

Das Kommentariat @52

thanks for that link to Ahmed Amr - absolutely devastating ...and accurate... critiques of the US crimes and war of aggression against poor Iraq, and the traumatic course of US 'policy', read imperialist adventurism and blood letting, in the middle East.

He's particularly good at skewering that nincompoop and sociopathic Bush

I've never read Amr before, and it's a veritable feast.

Posted by: michaelj72 | Dec 4 2019 23:58 utc | 55


B I don't know how much you can read these comments but this is one of your favorite topics. Neocon Tom McTague claims that the BZT discovered in the samples sent to Spiez were put there as part of a 'control group' study to test the lab's ability to properly analyze samples.

His long article is insufferable, skip to paragraph 19, the one that starts with "Spiez was indeed one of a small number of ...” Everything before that is pure garbage. If it was enriched uranium it would be weapons grade garbage.

Posted by: Christian J Chuba | Dec 5 2019 0:42 utc | 56

Circe | Dec 4 2019 16:31 utc | 17:

How does installing Pence into office any better?

Posted by: Ian2 | Dec 5 2019 0:49 utc | 57

Keith @39
"He probably just slipped up, he was thinking about the covert ops in 2002 that he wasn't supposed to mention."

Quite possibly he was unconsciously thinking of the October 2002 vote in the Congress that authorized the coming invasion.

That was the culmination of the invasion of the AMerican public's mind regarding the "need" and "justification" for invading Iraq. Maybe the vote was needed because the hunt for WMDs was going so badly.

Karlof1: Re Friedman I couldn't agree with you more. He is a lying creep. How can anyone take him or anything he says seriously? He is protected at the NYT, along with that other creep, David Brooks.

Posted by: Really?? | Dec 5 2019 1:19 utc | 58


Because Pence will be there for less than a year and has a ZERO chance of winning an election! I would think this is obvious.

Posted by: Circe | Dec 5 2019 1:32 utc | 59

@Alexander P. And? Stock up on popcorn? If and thats a South Florida obese type if, the US goes hot on Iran, it will only precipitate its fall. So worry or rejoice? Thats your choice..

Posted by: Lozion | Dec 5 2019 1:48 utc | 60

Ian2 @58: How does installing Pence into office any better?

Deal with one at a time.

The more effective evil is the evil that isn't recognized as evil.

The vast majority of USA people don't see Trump as evil: they support Trump directly or indirectly.

Most of the rest have no inkling of what Trump is really doing overseas. The same fake resistance that attacks Trump supports wacky policies like open borders and sex transitions for children. This just solidifies support for Trump.

And the Democratic Party offers no real opposition (IMO by design). Instead they criticism him for not being more war-like.

As a result, Americans will cheer when Trump takes us to war.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 5 2019 2:01 utc | 61

pence absolutely has a chance of winning, you think somebody like biden would be an improvement?

Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 5 2019 2:03 utc | 62

@ # 61. popcorn/ either way/fall

see> "Millennium Challenge 2002" (Imperial fleet sank in 10 minutes)

If the US suffers a massive and sudden defeat, that defeat will create systemic forces internally, which forces are almost sure to result in the use of atomic explosives on Iran.

Yes, that may, as you say, "precipitate fall" [of US]. Falls end in a sudden event...

With all these dam'd bombs on hand it does not seem like a happy "fall", but rather more. It would seem that "hot" on Iran would be like "hot" on a fuze... Not good.

Popcorn? More like "On the Beach", but in the dark and freezing.

Posted by: Walter | Dec 5 2019 2:06 utc | 63

i can't see how impeaching trump benefits anybody but the right wing democrats, and i don't care about them.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Dec 5 2019 2:08 utc | 64

If and thats a South Florida obese type if, the US goes hot on Iran, it will only precipitate its fall.

The US is not going to attack Iran-- even the Fat Boy had this explained to him.
In 15 minutes a world wide depression would be instigated.

Posted by: Duncan Idaho | Dec 5 2019 2:09 utc | 65

@ Duncan Idaho | Dec 5 2019 2:09 utc | 66

The last big world-wide depression ended with the UK declaration of war on Germany... Of course that was what Munich was all about. The design was to use the nazi armies as proxy, an instrument to conquer Russia, but the result was that the Red Armies conquered much of Europe, and would have occupied Europe all the way to Paris if the Anglosaxon forces had not landed. No operational plan survives first contact.

The implied thesis that governments avoid war to avoid depressions might not actually be valid. In actual fact they tend to make war when faced with the prospect of depression.

The US has already attacked Iran on many occasions, and got away with far. That, as they say, was then.

And now the Iranians have built and aligned a very potent fleet with those of China and Russia. If the Imperial forces retreat, that would, arguably, precipitate depression, since nobody will fear them anymore. If they attack, they will lose. That also precipitates depression, and probably a coup in the capitol swamp-city.

No, they may well attack, and to avoid losing, use atomics. That, reasonably, will also be seen as losing, only worse.

As Comrade Commandante Fidel said, the time for weapons is over. That leaves cooperation and diplomacy.

Posted by: Walter | Dec 5 2019 2:32 utc | 66

I like your mind-set. :) Me thinks though that this would just be the beginning of difficult times ahead for many of us. But yes, stocking up on Popcorn is a good idea for sure.

Posted by: Alexander P | Dec 5 2019 2:35 utc | 67

I recall that friedman was billmon's (proprietor of the whiskey bar, MoA's forerunner) bête noire. billmon had worked in amerikan media most of his life and apart from friedman's stylistic horror shows, the fact that as a zionist of the Dershowitz school, i.e. rabid and unable to comment on issues objectively, was part of the problem, but the biggest chunk was that friedman spruiked mercilessly in favour of the illegal invasion of Iraq, to the point where he would include proven deceits to buttress his propaganda, once a so-called journolist does that, there is simply no point to him/her other than as an example of how far humans can fall.

So I haven't read the bit b linked to, albeit for a rather different reason, I simply lack the time and energy to read, much less consider tendentious rubbish whose primary aim is to deceive others into killing those humans who friedman doesn't like/want to have hanging around a space friedman & his mates decided is where another bunch of surplus to amerikan requirements humans, should be made to live, so as to become the beach head for friedman's bosses to utilise as they steal every ME resource there is.

What I never get is that given the seemingly never ending supply of madmen happy to blow away a classroom of kids in amerika, how is it that no one goes for the likes of the friedman scum?

Posted by: A User | Dec 5 2019 3:33 utc | 68

Jackrabbit @62: Deal with one at a time.

I should clarify my remarks.

I don't think Trump will be impeached. It's all kayfabe. The Democrats want to look like they are doing something. But they offer no real opposition to Trump as they paint Trump's apparent unwillingness to start a war as treason. They readily ignore Trump's belligerence or belittle it, demanding more.

Trump has done what was expected/wanted from him and he will get another 4 years to finish what he started. Part of that plan, it seems likely, involves war with Iran.

Some are quick to point out that war with Iran is not winnable and could be counterproductive. But I don't think USA-Israel-Saudis see it that way. And they are in the drivers seat.

What the "unwinnable" narrative really does is attempt to quash dissent. Those who see a buildup to war are dismissed as scaremongers: anticipating/warning against a war with Iran is not rational.

Trump should be ousted because he's working against the interests of the American people by making us less safe (picking fights with North Korea, Iran, Venezeula, among others and exacerbating a Cold War with Russia). But this impeachment circus doesn't do that. And it's difficult to see that it does much of anything except help Trump - and those backing Trump - to advance their agenda.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Dec 5 2019 3:43 utc | 69

And Pence would ABSOLUTELY start a war with Iran in that less than a year. I would think this is obvious.

Posted by: Jason | Dec 5 2019 4:23 utc | 70

anneR @25 look at this link conflict: duty not to lie or make undisclosed assumptions vs 1st amendment right to speak
Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech.. What is freedom of speech..?
A law that requires all speech that contains a lie or is based on an assumption must be accompanied by a notice that the subject speech includes (the following lies) and (the following assumptions). Requiring these notices would not abridge 1st amendment freedom of speech but it would allow criminalizing undisclosed lies or assumptions.

so it seems to me Congress could both accommodate the first amendment and make criminal failure to disclose lies and assumptions made or used in speech into crimes

Posted by: snake | Dec 5 2019 5:37 utc | 71

anneR @25 look at this link conflict: duty not to lie or make undisclosed assumptions vs 1st amendment right to speak
Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech.. What is freedom of speech..?
A law that requires all speech that contains a lie or is based on an assumption must be accompanied by a notice that the subject speech includes (the following lies) and (the following assumptions). Requiring these notices would not abridge 1st amendment freedom of speech but it would allow criminalizing undisclosed lies or assumptions.

so it seems to me Congress could both accommodate the first amendment and make criminal failure to disclose lies and assumptions made or used in speech into crimes

Posted by: snake | Dec 5 2019 5:37 utc | 72

Why even threaten the high image and faultless reputation of your excellent blog by mentioning that NY toilet-paper of (criminal) record? Friedman and his "Friedman unit" are just one wipe away from the bowl and a long flush. Now I gotta go wash my hands. Please keep it clean around here!

Posted by: imo | Dec 5 2019 5:50 utc | 73

Friedman-henge is a special day which occurs once each year. The day when the earth is in such a position that viewers can witness the sun shining directly through Thomas Friedman’s ears.

Posted by: Oh | Dec 5 2019 5:56 utc | 74

There are a lot of news about the riot in Iran which are not covered outside the country, mostly in Farsi language. Here is an interview with firefighters, I have translated from Farsi, please refer to the link for picture and videos of the article.

Mr Reza Kazemi is one of the same firefighters who put his life on his palm to save lives and properties of people. He is in bed these days. We go to him to inquire about those horrible hours in Qods. His arms and legs are broken and his face burned. This broken arm and leg is both a symbol of his heroism and a symbol of the brutality of the rioters. Mr Morteza Zarrin is another fireman says a story of the courage of the Qods firefighters when, with one trick, they took back three fire engines from the rioters.
"They were brutal, like the Daesh ( ISIS)! ” This is the first sentence Mr. Reza Kazemi ( one of firefighter) says, in describing the rioters, as if it is only that they can show the height of their atrocities. He goes on: "As if someone had dictated to them how to go and hit and destroy. You could imagine a instruction writing was dictated to them. They had no feeling, no mercy. The rioters in Qods ( a city in west of Tehran) left no stone un-turned and did not have any mercy on the clinic and patients and ills in the clinics, they set clinic on fire, too. In the blink of an eye they set the city of Qods on fire and worst of all, they brutally stopped the fire fighters to extinguish the fire. We were prevented to put out the fire. Priority was given to us to extinguishing burning residential buildings, as all banks were evacuated. We had to save people's lives first. The upper floor of one of the banks was a residential home. We were dispatched to extinguish the fire, rioters attacked the fire engine, they were armed. They brought us down with knives and cutlery, we were two people without any weapons, they blocked the way to any resistance. They picked up the firefighter engine and drove away quickly. We called the center to dispatch another firefighting engine; Until the next engine reached the desired address, all the belongings of a newly married couple, bride and groom, who had been married just two weeks ago, had been burnt. It was two weeks after the couple's marriage. The couple stayed home until the last moment to prevent fire, but the fire seemed too forceful. My colleague and I reached the home, but it was too late. The young woman was sitting in the cold floor of the street and crying. "It's been a week past now, but the crying of the young bride still is sounding in my ear."
Reza Kazemi, is in bed these days, his arms and legs are burned, he has pain but his is in his best mood than ever, saying that " I can tolerate so sever intense burning pains because I saved the lives of three people". We ask him to recount the incident of that night.
"Rioters set fire to two banks and a pharmacy and three shops downstairs of an office and commercial building. Because the building's facade was made of combo material the fire spread quickly to the upper floors. Two fire engines were dispatched to the site. I was supposed to stay at the station. The building is near the fire station. A few minutes after the engines were dispatched, I walked out of the station and saw that besides the bank and shops, all the buildings of Mount Nour complex were on fire, as if someone was whispering to my ear go to that building, even though I was assigned to stay at the station. "
He considers not staying at the station was a miracle. As the narrative of that night goes on, we understand why he says it was a miracle; “I reached the building. The noise was high and the firemen were extinguishing the fire. The building was an office and commercial and was said to be evacuated and no one was there. But I realized there was some sound in the midst of the noises. It was as if someone was screaming for help. I sharpened my ears. I found the sound was coming from inside the building. Intensity of smoke and fire was huge that I could not get in from the main building. I walked around the building, the door of the yard was closed. Two or three people were around. They helped me to climb the wall and reached the upstairs, from upstairs there was some security fence, I climbed the fence and jumped into the yard. At that moment the pain wrapped around my hands and feet, but there was no time to hesitate. I went inside the building, it was just smoke and darkness and you couldn't walk. The sounds got closer, the screams of a few people coming together. I went to the first floor, using the flashlight, reached to hall, three people were caught in smoke and fire and could not get out of the building. The fire was increasing every moment. I found them, the pain in my leg and hand was increasing every moment, my face was burning and my burning sensation was gone, but at that moment the lives of those three and their salvation was more important than anything. We went to the yard, but couldn't open the door, it was locked, using a ladder I send all three to out of the building, and I came out of the deadly smoke and fire and took a breath."
He paused for a while, continues: "My firefighter colleagues were busy extinguishing the fire at the front of the building and no one noticed me at the back of the building. All of the five-story buildings, including 20 commercial units and several banks and shops, were on fire. My leg and hand aches were so severe that I could no walk any longer, I sit on the street floor. The rioters saw anyone in firefighters uniform, beat them, they had no mercy. As I was lonely, tired of the pain, fell down on the street floor , At the same time I was so happy that I had saved three life, the rest was no longer important. I was about the same time when a couple noticed that I was injured and I was a firefighter, they helped me and got me in their car. I was wrestling with the intensity of my arm and leg pain, I did know where they could take me. The Qods city, which has no hospital, had no health centers, no clinic were left. At that moment, the couple found the safest place is the Qods Spah building. Getting there was also enough. The saboteurs blocked all routes by burning cars in the middle of the street. Finally, we went to the Corps building. The young couple handed me over to the guards. I was in the Corps building for a few hours, in pain. After few hours they could send me to the hospital.

The riots in the Qods was huge, you have to sit down for hours and listen to the words of each firefighter who was in the middle of a rioters destruction. Another firefighter Mr. Morteza Zarrin has an audacious account of the courage of firefighters and the brutality of the rioters. He says the problem has come to a point that we have had impersonate ourselves as rioters.
"The rioters in Qods not only attacked the firefighting engine, but also took us at gun point or knife and cutlery, so that we could not extinguish the fire". Zarrin says three firefighters devised a plot. We were in the shock that we had lost the first firefighter engine, when our colleagues announced that the rioters had taken two more engine. In the event that Qods was on fire, the existence of each of these vehicle was vital.
We should have done something. Three of our coworkers arranged for us to take out our uniforms and wear plane cloth and go to the saboteurs gathering place. We were supposed to appear in the role of agitators and with this trick, take the fire engines from them. The plan was dangerous if they realized we were firefighters would cost our life.
But the city was on fire. In less than a few hours, 50 points of Hassan Khan's castle were set on fire. We went to the rioters' gathering on Str. 45m. They were so stupid that they thought the cans under the fire engine were gasoline. They had poured it on top f the vehicle to make it easier to ignite fire, no matter how much gasoline they were pouring, the cars would not burn because these cans were a special fire-extinguishing foam that had been spilled over on the engine. We took this opportunity and said we knew how to ignite a fire for the this type of engine, and we had already burned some more engines in Mallard. In short the thugs also believed, we got into the vehicle in the blink of an eye and drove out of the area. The rioters had looted all the engine. We estimate that about 300 million damaged the Qods Fire Department."

Posted by: arata | Dec 5 2019 6:25 utc | 75

Circe | Dec 5 2019 1:32 utc | 60:

It should be obvious to anyone that the POTUS is selected by the Electoral College.

Posted by: Ian2 | Dec 5 2019 6:31 utc | 76

Jackrabbit @62/70:

The only thing I disagree with is your last statements @62/70 about Americans (minus the Evangelicals/Zionists) gleefully supporting war when the time comes. Unfortunately, dissenting voices would be ignored like back in 2003. I agree Trump is a conman but I don't believe he can rally the general public in supporting more war. He's good, but not that good. This whole impeachment circus is a giant nothing-burger; a distraction for the unwashed masses from the Biden scandal. Frankly, removing Trump doesn't change one damn thing. Pence would step in and the DNC would ensure no sane candidate would get nominated.

If the jackals are crazy enough to launch a direct action against Iran, it'll be after the (re)selection ceremony. The slow build up of forces could be about securing the House of Fraud from collapse. The numbers aren't there to support a ground invasion of Iran. Perhaps an air campaign in striking a specific infrastructure in Bushehr? Insane, as it's operational. Expect the IAEA to be used like the OPCW.

BTW, what's your take on Songbird's demise? He's known to be a rabid supporter. Why take him out then?

Posted by: Ian2 | Dec 5 2019 7:32 utc | 77

karlof1 | Dec 4 2019 16:17 utc | 14 their name is seen on the byline ...

If the writer's name was on the 1st line, scanning would be easy and effective.

Thus I usu read from end of comments [on the 1st page] and scan upwards. Then as reader I decide by experience which to bypass as not likely to be educational. Also subsequent pages
if enuf interest.

Posted by: chu teh | Dec 5 2019 7:33 utc | 78

- Friedman is a good indicator/confirmation of what the socalled "Washington Concensus" is.

Posted by: Willy2 | Dec 5 2019 7:46 utc | 79

He's just afraid that his dear *zionist masters* are going to be decommissioned soon.

Trump+MEK alliance of maximum pressure and terror was taken down with a single Internet shutdown in Iran. Now they have no more cards to play. Israel is going down as soon as US stability gets reduced a bit (read next election). GG.

Posted by: A | Dec 5 2019 9:51 utc | 80

snake @73

I must be exceedingly thick, but it isn't at all apparent to me how your reference to freedom of speech and the law behind it (I am in complete agreement with the understanding that there should be no harness, at all, on speech; that we either have total freedom of speech or we have none; that we have to be able to accept that some speech will offend us just as we will doubtless give it to others) had much to do with what I wrote @25.

Of course, under freedom of speech, not only should everyone be free to express their opinions, views, beliefs and so on, but also lie through their teeth. And that would include the MSM and their presstitutes, who have perfected the capability of doing so while "seeming" to be truth tellers, by advertising themselves as such in a whole variety of ways all the while demeaning and decrying counter-arguments, opposing points of view, different perspectives, and the truth as "disinformation."

Posted by: AnneR | Dec 5 2019 11:15 utc | 81

B's love affair with the Hudson Pravda...

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Dec 5 2019 11:34 utc | 82

A priest in the death cult.

Posted by: paul | Dec 5 2019 12:32 utc | 83

@ AnneR | Dec 5 2019 11:15 utc | 82 (freedom of speech)

All rights and freedoms depend absolutely upon the principle that the Sovereign itself is subject to Law. Absent this principle one has ukase, rule by decree, and "Citizen" becomes "Subject", "contract" becomes license.

That's the principle in Magna Carta, and the USC.

That ended overtly with Bushie # 43. See, for illumination "ABOVE AND BEYOND INTERNATIONAL LAW:

just use the title in duckduckgo or whatever.

Posted by: Walter | Dec 5 2019 12:55 utc | 84

Dave 42
"72,000+ US special ops personnel were mobilized to deploy for an invasion of Iraq around the end of July, beginning of August time frame.

This makes sense.
Who can forget the big WMD push to get the Octoboer authorization vote passed in Congress? (Digression: When John Kerry (my senator from Mass. in whom I had had a fair amount of confidence) caved in on that it sure was the end of the honeymoon for me. His constituents inundated his office with calls to vote NO, but he voted YES. It was pathetic. Once again he caved in to his Yalie inferior when he "graciously" conceded the 2004 election to Bush Jr., confirming his status as a wuss, at best.)

Anyhow, of course the operation had to be all ready to take off the shelf before the "authorization." The whole WMD thing was a facade and a farce. The "innocent" among us thought: "There are obviously no WMDs in Iraq. This whole Iraq thing will run out of steam and die." With growing horror one realized that the show would go on. The culmination of the lie-fest being Colin Powell's UN performance.

For me the greatest, most nauseating lie of all is the ex post facto attempt at exculptation "We all thought there were WMDs in Iraq."

Of course the NYT/Judith Miller were major pushers of this toxic mash.

So, Friedman, too, very likely was in on the plans and has let this slip via "2002." "Stinking rat" is way too good a term for him. And Miller. And the whole NYT board, who must have planned their disinformation campaign.

And these traitors and murderers have the chutzpah to name themselves the arbitrators of "fake news." Among these, the unctuous, basically adolescent, teacher's-pet married-to-a-millionairess know-it-all Friedman is still particularly obnoxious. Possibly because he is a primary "public face" of the operation.

Posted by: Really?? | Dec 5 2019 13:11 utc | 85

Ian2, #78

Who is Songbird?

Posted by: Really?? | Dec 5 2019 13:27 utc | 86

@Walter | Dec 4 2019 15:08 utc | 9
Yo write within citation marks this:
> "General Yuanming, for his part, praised Iran’s Navy as “an international and strategic force,” and said(...)"
The general should be mentioned by hus complete name or by his family name (surname). Calling him by the cristian namne' only, that's like calling the later US president "General Ike",

Posted by: Tollef Ås (Tsyew T'ao-Loh)

Posted by: Ts'yew T'aw-Loh | Dec 5 2019 13:42 utc | 87

I encountered this sleazy & slimy mr.Tom Friedman once:In Al Quds al-Sharif/Yerushalaim some years after I had been working in Iran and elsewhere amongst speakers of Arabic and Farsi. It seemed from his pronounciation of common Arabic, Farsi and Dari names of people and places that he was not in command of either Arabic or Perian. Hebrew and US English, however...

Posted by: Ts'yew T'aw-Loh | Dec 5 2019 13:48 utc | 88

@ Ian2 | Dec 5 2019 7:32 utc | 78 (IAEA & Songbird)

Today the claims are mooted by EU (see presstv) "Britain, France, Germany claim in letter to UN chief Iran has ‘nuclear-capable missiles’ "

Given the mass of modern atomic explosives, a Cessna 150 is "nuclear capable delivery system", almost any rocket, or a donkey. The claim is therefore an absurd resort of an obviously false but highly emotional rhetoric.

So yes, your idea that IAEA will be instrumental in the TBS run-up to get "consent" for attacking Iran. It is quite clear that the ground is being made ready in the public "mind".

About "Songbird"... I have no idea about who that may be, but it was McCain's nick-name when he was a traitor in Vietnam.

Posted by: Walter | Dec 5 2019 13:48 utc | 89

NYT today: The Fierce Rise and Hard Fall of New York’s Taxi King

Ferraris. Villas on the French Riviera. Tax fraud. No one embodies the spectacular collapse of the city’s taxi industry more than Gene Freidman.

<<--- just to say that however homophonic, Friedman != Friedman

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Dec 5 2019 14:35 utc | 90

Sorry for the typos in comments #89 and #90. My eyesight is rather bad, and even tho ive done a lot of proofreading for others in my life, I'm all too sloppy and uncritical of myself when typing in English.

Posted by: JoveBove/區司 | Dec 5 2019 14:38 utc | 91

You have to wonder what principles Friedman holds that motivate his writing and his op-eds.
Posted by: Jen | Dec 4 2019 22:22 utc | 50

Tom is motivated by mirrors (and smoke).
He enjoys standing in front of a mirror and singing "Together We Are Beautiful" to his reflection.

A vehement TLF critic speculated, several years ago, that Tom's narcissism was so overwhelming that he probably has to cover his wife's face with a photo of his own before he can muster the wherewithal to bonk her...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Dec 5 2019 14:45 utc | 92

Walter @85

Would you please explain to me what your comment on my comment on snake's comment in reply to my original comment @25 has to do with what I originally wrote?

I am (what a surprise!) aware of Magna Carta (and how it wasn't intended to apply to the hoi polloi - villeins at the time) and its positing of the "Sovereign" also being subject to "the Law" (which doesn't, of course, mean that "the Law[s]" are just, equitable, humane), but the men who discussed, wrote and presented this document did not, in their imaginations include the villeins (lower orders usually "heafed" to their overlords) of the time, who were not among those discussing, writing Magna Carta. Far from it, the authors were the aristos who considered the lower orders as inferior stock, "untermenschen."

And I am fully aware that the US government at all layers, elected or appointed, in the limelight or the shadows considers itself above and unhampered by international law even as it uses those laws, usually illegitimately, against those nations it sees as rival (Russia, China, Iran), as holding within its borders resources that US corporate-capitalists can exploit to their own, but not the country of origin's profit, as not being sufficiently obsequious to US overlordship, diktat. Thus they are, in fact, demonstrably war criminals, and have been so over several generations of presidencies - including this one and its immediate predecessor, not solely under Bush.

But I am still in the dark as to why either you or snake have countered what I wrote originally with this stuff about Magna Carta.

Let me be clear - I abhor all imperialism, imperialist pretensions, no matter "who" is in the WH, Congress, #10 or Parliament. I loathe and detest capitalism particularly but not only in its corporate, imperialist form. I loathe the greed and the hubris and the hypocrisy of the west. And I believe that every country/people has the right to develop in their own way and should be free to do so without "our" bloody (all too often literally) interference in them.

Posted by: AnneR | Dec 5 2019 14:50 utc | 93

@86 Really?? You know she is still in the business right? An "expert" on foreign policy.
Even better you can read her opinions on Syria. LMFAO. You can't make this shit up.

Posted by: goldh | Dec 5 2019 15:04 utc | 94

All rights and freedoms [...] ended overtly with Bushie # 43. See, for illumination "ABOVE AND BEYOND INTERNATIONAL LAW:

Posted by: Walter | Dec 5 2019 12:55 utc | 85

So a ruler of Despotate of Austin, also known as Tejas (or Texas) seized the power in Washington and from that seat of power redefined what "law" and "freedom" mean. The latter was demoted to describe a concoction made from potato slivers and beef tallow.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Dec 5 2019 15:05 utc | 95

Wrong again: Should have been #89 & #91,
But misprints can be worse than this: In Russian -- according to exiled or emigré author Vladimir Nabokov -- the words for "Crown", "Head/Caput" and "Cow" are quite similar in sound and spelling, So when the last Tzar of Russia was crowned in St. Petersburg, one newspaper headline became "When they crowned the cow and it her on his head(...). The following day the editors apoligized by writing that what they meant to say was of course "...and then the cow was laced on his royal head."
Talk of 'giving head'. How come they don't put mister Fried Man into gainful emplyment and bless the world with composing headlines akin to the royal reprtage -- but dedicated to reporting about his favorite head or those of his employers?

Posted by: Ts'yew T'aw-Loh | Dec 5 2019 15:07 utc | 96

@ AnneR | Dec 5 2019 14:50 utc | 94 It has to do with the self-evident fact that Law ends and ukase occurs if the Sovereign is not bound under Law. I do not believe I disagreed with your post, and certainly did not intend to. I intended to add to it. Kindly do not consider my remarks as a "counter"'s dialogue. Magna Carta is over. An historical fragment, like the USC.

@ Piotr Berman | Dec 5 2019 15:05 utc | 96 (Texas (?))
If you say so... I do not see any mention of "Texas" in the Kahn legal essay, but I am glad you read it.

"Texas", they say, is the nom de guerre of an officer in the Donbass Militia...but I do not believe he has seized power anywhere in the US, let alone Washington. He was formerly, they say, in the US Federal Prison, having been involved, he has said, in an unlicensed importation of cannabis. I believe he has designs to open a "Tex-Mex" restaurant in the Donbass. If so, that would seem, at least, to make any seizure of power somewhat problematic.

Posted by: Walter | Dec 5 2019 15:28 utc | 97

76# Arata

Thank you very much,Arata,for relaying this highly important and shocking story from the mouth of an Iranian fire-fighter.This is what I consider real inside information from within the troubled city. What puzzles me,is how those terrorists can act in an organised way,without being noticed at forehand by the allegedly capable iranian secret services.

Posted by: willie | Dec 5 2019 17:23 utc | 98

Really?? 86

I meant "arbiters," not "arbitrators."

Posted by: Really?? | Dec 5 2019 17:58 utc | 99

@68 Oh and of course plan ahead your destination of choice, should the shtf..

Posted by: Lozion | Dec 5 2019 18:44 utc | 100

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