Saturday 29 November 2014

December 2014 Quadrant

The link to Quadrant Online is

The December 2014 issue of Quadrant is almost upon us and maybe I am providing some kind of exclusive (or indiscretion) with the above visual. For this edition I wrote an appraisal of Julia Gillard's political memoir My Story. Usually I never know in advance the title the editors have chosen to bestow - it is always better than my own descriptive heading. Keith and George, in this case, have gone for "Julia Gillard's Tall Story".    

Is the Council on American-Islamic Relations a Terror Group?

Daniel Pipes, president of the Middle East Forum, asks the big question - and then provides us with a difinitive answer:

Sunday 23 November 2014

Erdogan's Neo-Ottoman Fantasy is Trashing the Turkish Republic's Reputation

Outline of the Ottoman Empire, 1602

I find it difficult to disagree with the following op-ed, except to say that Alon Ben-Meir's tone is a little on the polite side:

Palestinians can't murder their way to a self-governing state - but they'll give it a shot!

Arab Palestinians celebrating 9/11

When will people connect the dots? Islamic jihadism does not equal Arab self-determination in what was once Mandatory Palestine:

Saturday 22 November 2014

Castro Doth Protest Too Much, Methinks

Here is an anniversary piece from last year in The Atlantic magazine with Castro trying to erase himself from the wider picture. I particularly like the bit where the sympathetic interviewer intimates that Castro felt sad Kennedy died so young. This would be the same Castro who pleaded with Khrushchev to bomb America at the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Fidel, you will be pleased to note, now has second thoughts about his moment of millennial psychosis: "After I've seen what I've seen, and know what I know, it wasn't worth it at all." Well, that's okay then! Here Castro offers the results of his own secret police's active-research on the assassination, which once and for all rules out Oswald as the assassin. I am surprised Oliver Stone, Castro's good buddy, did not use their highly scientific conclusions for his film:

Here is the article I wrote last year, "What JFK's Assassination Did to America", published in the November 2013 edition of Quadrant on the 50th anniversary of the assassination. Not being one for conspiracy, I wouldn't accuse Castro of organising the assassination of JFK, although it is fascinating to speculate on Lee Harvey Oswald's movements in the aftermath of murdering Kennedy - Oak Cliff was on the bus route to the nearest airport. This, of course, does not implicate Castro in any direct way:

Erdogan & Hamas

Hamas' Ismail Haniyeh and Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Paul Alster writes this piece about the close relationship between the Turkish government and Hamas:

Friday 21 November 2014

Tuesday 18 November 2014

Tony Abbott: Right Person at the Right Time

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

If the polls are to be believed, the most troublesome deficit confronting the Prime Minister is his failure to inspire the electorate's enthusiasm. Yet, perversely, it is the enmity of his critics' flawed and partisan appraisals that confirm him as the best and most competent man to occupy the Lodge. This is my latest article in the November 2014 edition of Quadrant magazine:

Monday 17 November 2014

Saturday 15 November 2014

A BBC Documentary on Rojava

Here is a fascinating documentary on Rojava from the BBC's Our World programme:

Conservative Harper Says What Progressive Obama Does Not Say

Okay, there might be some guy in the nineteenth century who was bad, but surely Obama cannot be topped as the worst president in the history of the United States of America. Well done, Canadian PM Harper, for telling it like it is:

Truth Teller: Australia's Immigration Minister Scott Morrison

Psychotic supporters of IS somewhere in Mesopotamia - Oh dear, where are the women?

I do not wish to be rude to the many fabulous Americans who visit this site, but your president is here in Australia (at the G20) banging on about carbon (dioxide) emissions while Kobani burns. Here is Australia's Immigration Minister, Scott Morrison, saying something relevant about the world:   

Friday 14 November 2014

Wednesday 12 November 2014

The Legend of Kobani

My information is that the Islamic State fighters besieging Kobani are being slowly outflanked by the YPG. Time will tell but the legend of Kobani continues to grows whatever the outcome. This is fine piece by Rashid Karadaghi:

Vladimir Putin: Less a Russian Patriot than a Russian Imperialist

Soviet Administrative Divisions, 1989

I found Timothy Snyder's article "Putin's New Nostalgia", in the New York Review of Books, insightful:

Kobani will not fall - defending Afrin is the next challenge

Here is another enlightening article by Patrick Cockburn in The Independent newspaper:

Tuesday 11 November 2014

Erdogan and Kobani

Turkish tanks stand by as the Islamic State besieges Kobani 

Here is a long and interesting article by Jenna Krajeski, in the New Yorker magazine, about the relationship between Turkey's President Erdogan and Kobani:

Monday 10 November 2014

Mosul, Capital of the Islamic State

Tigris River, Mosul

Here is Patrick Cockburn reporting on life in Mosul, capital of the Islamic State. From the Independent newspaper:

Power to the Women! Power to the People!


Jazeera (or Cizire) is one of the three Kurdish cantons of Rojava (top right), the independent homeland of Syrian Kurds. Here is a story of mostly Muslim women who are fighting for freedom and equality:

Friday 7 November 2014

Russian KGB Knucklehead Creates Independent Spirit of Ukraine

Remember how Western leftists were blaming America for Ukrainians wanting to be free of Russian imperialism earlier this year?

An Electoral Massacre

Only in America have the lefties hijacked the colour blue; maybe the Republicans could adopt UKIP's purple?

The Economist magazine is not anti-Obama by any means but they understand what this mid-term election says about the worst president in the history of the United States perfectly:

Thursday 6 November 2014

Tuesday 4 November 2014

Shock horror - two conflicting opinions in one magazine!

I respect the fact that the November 2014 edition of Quadrant leads with two opposing opinions on the same issue. Here is Tom Switzer's take on what we should do with regards to the Islamic State: 

And here is is Keith Windschuttle's view:

Saturday 1 November 2014

November 2014 Quadrant Out Now

The cover of the November 2014 edition for the benefit of those might never behold a physical copy

There are various ways to subscribe to Quadrant magazine, including the digital version: Here is a link: I love the way this month's edition has two long essays (one by Tom Switzer, the other by Keith Windschuttle) arguing contrary positions on how to deal with Islamic State. Matthew Omolesky's article, "White Swords and Black Pages: The Damnatio Memoriae of Abu Tammam", on the Islamic State's destruction of the cultural treasures of Syria and Iraq - the "spread of cultural oblivion" - is a powerful and informative piece. I will link to the article if it comes out from behind the subscriber's wall.    

Kurdistan Safeguarding Christian Manuscripts from the Islamic State

Entry into Jerusalem, the Dominican Friars of Mosul

The Kurds are becoming the conscience of the world:

Active Cataclysmic Agitators United

The Islamic State's Five-Year Plan

Islamic jihadists, of whatever configuration, share the same apocalyptic millennialist psychosis:
should find common cause in The Long War?