Thursday, April 2, 2015

Break Out the Champagne and Toast Obama! Then Let Us Weep for Kenya.

I've been gone for months with a vision problem but what a challenging day to come back.  This is a day of great good news. It is also one of stunning sorrow.

Good news first: Obama has done it again!  He has saved our bacon big-time.

Today he got a strong agreement that blocks Iran from making nuclear weapons. Even some of his critics  -  not the anti-Obamas who oppose whatever he does, but those who are educated and savy  -  have rejected their own prior criticisms and have good words for this agreement

In less than a year he has saved us from two threats of annihilation that were looming over us. First, he got a crucially significant agreement with China to reduce carbon pollution and thus avoid turning our planet into Venus. Now he has staved off the other nightmare: nuclear cataclysm. 

If Iran had made a bomb......! All this world needs is a nuclear arms race between Sunnis and Shiites or between any other divided segments of the Muslim world.  No matter the division, we would have a nuclear arms race. A reignition of bitter religious wars dating from more than a millennium ago, with each side armed with the worst killing capacity there has ever been.  Saudi Arabia was poised to pick up its side of the contest if these talks failed and start its own bomb-making. Already it has come off the sidelines in recent days to fight against Iran and its proxies in several places in the Middle East. With Iran and Saudi Arabia squaring off with conventional weapons, these are not the best of times.

But with a nuclear weapon in Iran's hands, these would certainly have become the worst of times. From Iran where could the bomb have wandered? For that matter, the more countries have the bomb the more likely that ISIS and other extremists groups will steal it.

But as great as is Obama's halting of Iran's bomb ambitions, we cannot rejoice as we would like because of the tragedy in Kenya. No, I misspeak. It's not a tragedy when gunmen invade a college campus and methodically execute over a hundred non-Muslim students and staff.  It's murder.

Sure, these fanatics really believe their warped religious doctrine that drives them to kill, but they are nothing more than cheap vicious criminals who must be caught and jailed if possible or killed on sight if necessary. A plague is lose in the world. We are seeing the early stages of infection which, bad as they are, could be nothing compared to the next phase that could be developing, i.e. Sunni vs Shiite all across the Muslim world and the worst of the extremists groups being fueled by the major antagonists.

That is how the great good news today ties in with the sorrowful news of today. The gunmen who invaded the Kenyan college and massacred people were allied with an Al Quada group. Country by country the infection keeps growing.

We must keep nuclear weapons out of the Muslim world to keep them out of the hands of the extremists. Those who burn people alive and film it and slaughter college students in their beds would never hesitate to unleash a holocaust of atomic weapons should they get them. We should in fact get rid of all the nuclear weapons. It's a miracle that in 70 years since the bomb was developed it has never strayed into the hands of crazy groups or been set off by crazed individuals in the military of one of the nuclear countries as in "Dr. Strangelove".

There is another connection between the good news and the bad.  Kenya is the land of Obama's father. By the strange paths of fate, a descendant of the wonderful country of Kenya today built a major wall against violence while at the same time violence was being inflicted on the people of his father's homeland. Indeed Obama still has relatives there. 

Remember too that Obama is a college professor and those who died today in Kenya were college students. We college professors and other teachers love students. That's why we teach. We love students wherever they are.

As our world gets smaller and smaller, the hurts cut deeper and deeper. We would never dream of asking for whom the bell tolls. We all know too well that the bell tolls for each of us. Today my daughter-in-law in Norway expressed on Facebook great sadness "for all our friends in Kenya."  She means actual friends. She and my son visit in Kenya. We are our brothers' and sisters' keepers, and our brothers and sisters live all over this world.

Thank you, President Obama, for today making the world safer for all of us.  I wish you could have also saved the Kenyan students. I know you wish the same.




Sunday, March 22, 2015

Promises

On Tuesday I go to a better eye doctor, and I hope for a good outcome.  So much is happening in politics and internationally that it's frustrating to be sidelined now.

Please be patient. I shall return. Thank you all for your loyalty.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Not Forgotten

I haven't forgotten you. I shall be back soon, for sure. My eye is progressing well.

How does one thank such a loyal readership?  In spite of my absence and there being no new posts in quite a while, this past month was one of the highest readerships since I began this blog.

Thank you. You make an old lady feel damn good!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

A Salute to Ukraine and an Apology to All of You

I salute the good people of Ukraine in their struggle. You are, and always have been, a brave people.

I apologize for the long hiatus. Had to have an eye procedure, sort of like cleaning the windshield. I'll be back soon. So much has happened.

Thanks to all of you who have been faithful through this long break. "I'll be back."

Friday, January 16, 2015

I Shall Return

Still recuperating from the evil illness but hope to be back in the next week or so with a few words or lots. Keep well!

Friday, January 2, 2015

A New Year

Thanks to you who have wished me a good recovery from the near-pneumonia that literally knocked me down on December 15.

I'm recovering well but still need to take it easy. Maybe in the interest of our health we should all turn our heads from the sight of the GOP taking over the Senate and installing an even larger majority in the House.

Let us hope they will do a better job of governance with the specter of 2016 staring at them. But nothing indicates that this is likely no matter how devoutly it is to be wished.

We can, however, rejoice in the excellent work Obama has done through executive orders and for how he handled Sony and North Korea. The  North Korea v. Sony contretemps was on balance a remarkable comedy show by the show biz company and the nutcase country.  If there is anybody who doesn't believe Obama pulled the plug on North Korea's internet connection, I have a bridge I'd be willing to sell.  Mr. President, you are so cool!

Just as 2015 opened its arms to us, one of the great liberals of the 20th Century left us:  Mario Cuomo. He spoke eloquently against Ronald Reagan's "shining city" that was really a heartless ice palace. Cuomo likened America to a wagon train headed into out mythic west, thunderously announcing that we would leave no one behind, not the weak nor the elderly, not the children nor the poor. That was our American creed.

I believe and hope it still is. Let us go forward, but always together.

So farewell to Mario Cuomo and all those who left us in 2014, especially dear old Pete Seeger, who was bard to the best in us.

To you all, a very good New Year.  Make it good for others and it will be good for you.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Good for you,Obama! And good for us!

I'm very sick but I want to say that this day I am extraordinarily proud of our president for tearing down the wall we built between us and Cuba.  Fifty years was a long and stupid mistake.