• "God invented war so Americans could learn geography" -- Mark Twain.

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Nut Crackens


It would seem the United States has perfected the technique of invisible invasions.  Today, all of a sudden, the Guardian UK has started referring to the "Free Syrian Army."  What began several months ago as "democracy protests" (which were, of course "brutally suppressed") then metamorphosed into "armed resistance" aided and abetted from it was never very clear where.  But now at least the egg is hatched and we have a Free Syrian Army.

The difference is diplomatically important because, whereas every government has the sovereign right to crush insurrectionists whithin its borders, foreign governments don't have the right to assist rebels until they have gained enough ground that they can reasonably be considered co-belligerents.  In other words, the importance of a "civil war" is that outsiders can intervene whereas no one can intervene in a domestic disturbance. 

What the United States has perfected is agitating domestic disturbance with tweets and NGO grants until they ripen into a civil war.  From the Ukraine to Libya the technique has been honed and perfected.  To be sure, the United States is happy when it need go no further than suborn a majority in the National Assembly, as happened last month during Paraguays "28 Hour Impeachment" of a "left-leaning" and "pro-peasant" president who managed to offend  land holding "oligarchs" including American corporations and the Bush Family.  But Syria is a tougher nut to crack; but cracked it will be, into an ethnic bantustan of mutually loathing factions that will be unable to resist anything Israel or the United States wants.

Israel?  Look at a map of the Euphrates and trace the route of any pipeline from that great and essential aquifer.


Nunc Pro Clunk

Well... it might be a fun summer after all, what with Obama holding Romney's feet to the fire over his role in Bain Capital's massive "export" of American jobs between 1999 and 2002.   Of course, the whole and entire purpose and intent of a company like Bain Capital is to make a profit by selling off assets and reducing labour costs. Nevertheless, Romney claims that he left the company in 1999 and had nothing to do with the gutting operations thereafter.  Alas, his SEC filings with the government list him as Man In Charge as of 2002.  

Seeking to stem the avalanche of bad publicity falling on Romney's head, campaign spokesman Ed Gillespie has bravely claimed that Romney had "retroactively retired" in 2002.


This might not be as odd as it seems.  In lawyer-land, it is a known and accepted procedure to back-date documents -- nunc pro tunc -- or now for then -- to reflect either what really existed or what really should have taken effect on an earlier date.  We suspect that in non-lawyer land this will go over as nunc pro clunk.