HAMMERNEWS- Michael Hammerschlag

Current Political Commentary by journalist Michael Hammerschlag; Thoughts on foreign policy, Republican outrages, liberal strategies, science by 8 year correspondent in Russia/Ukraine over 22 years and longtime commentator; Website: http://HAMMERNEWS.com

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Something New on Something Old

APRIL 26 Well, I'm joining the current blogosphere, although in truth, I may have helped invent the form. I wrote the regular newsletter reports on the struggle to save Bill Clinton during the Impeachment for our Stop the Madness website (created a couple of weeks after Move-On), which petitioned 24 Repub Senators with finished book of thousands of petitioners and letters to, uh, Stop the Madness. At it's height it was 2-3 a week, but usually one a month or 2 through 2001. We succeeded, I believe, in swaying the votes of 3 or 4 Senators. I also maintained a warblog about the Iraq War on my main website Hammernews.com, where I tried to analyze the tactical situation in the war.

PAPAL PAINS: The election of Ratko Ratzinger is a stunning and devastating victory for Rove and Co., since he was the guy who penned the outrageous and disastrous "no communion to sinners" (non-opponents of abortion) doctrine that devastated John Kerry, and lost the first Catholic Presidential candidate in 44 years the Catholic vote. At 65 mil, they are 27% of the vote. Kerry got only 47% to Bush's 52%. If Kerry had even got a marginally respectable 55%- it would have been 5 mil more votes and definitely the election. John Kennedy got 78%.This dragging of the entire church into the right wing tent via a couple of hot button issues was obviously their strategy from when Bush uncomfortably sat like Charlie Brown at the Pope's knee, but it's success is shocking- this alliance with evangelical and hard core factions. Gone is the church's dedication to helping the poor and disadvantaged, it's hostility to war, replaced with doctrinaire right wing rigidity by the former head of the Vatican's Inquisition dept. If this translates into Republican dominance of US Catholics, they won't even need the nuclear option to silence dissent in the coming neo-dictatorship. They went from a conservative in John Paul II to a reactionary in Ratzinger, and the question is: was there any communication between Karl Rove and Ratzinger in Bush's trip or anytime to coordinate or provoke what was a shocking intersession into the American political process.

Pope Benedict is implicated by the Observer in a conspiracy to hide any reporting of priest sex-abuse of boys till the victims were 28.

I must confess to grave qualms about Turkish admission to the EU. Despite their apparent liberality, it is a fundamentally different place in values and standards than Europe- in respect for minorities, women, religions. Even 90 years later, they can't admit their monstrous crimes in the Armenian genocide, where from 750,000- 1.5 million where transported by German built train lines into the northern Syrian desert to be slaughtered or starved. Seems the Germans were trying only to bring troops to the WWI Middle Eastern fronts in Palestine and Iraq- but the Turks had other uses for the new railway. Mass murders went on for 7 years. Saw a devastating documentary on it last year at film festival- some good Germans tried to stop it, but their superiors in Berlin didn't care. It became the model for the Holocaust, Hitler famously bragging, "Who still talks nowadays of the extermination of the Armenians?"

Almost no one was ever punished for it, and to their everlasting shame, the Turks never even acknowledged it's perpetration. Lately, they've been making nonsense claims of Armenians instigating slaughters of Turks. Would Germany belong to the UN, if they denied the Holocaust? Read recently, Mein Kampf is #1 or 2 book in Turkey, due to burgeoning anti-Semitic neo-fascist elements. EUnionists seem determined to push it through, but they should carefully examine the festering condition of the Muslim underclass in France, Germany, Holland, etc., and ask themselves if they could stand unlimited immigration from Turkey.... and what it would do to their values.