Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Zut alors! Ils ont mange ma dromedaire!!!

AFP is reporting to-day, that the family left to care for a camel presented to French President Francois Hollande by Malian villagers in gratitude for evicting AQ rebels, has probably eaten their ward. Somebody recently revisited the area and decided to check on the Presidential cadeau. It had gone 'Pouf!'

The French Minister of Defense  broke the bad news at a recent cabinet meeting. The President's reaction was  not noted.

So either the family were AQ sympathizers or the situation in Mali is so bad that camels are a liability worth eating rather than a source of transport or work income. Maybe next time une poule, un canard,  a foie or even a simple boeuf might be more appropriate. Pas des cochons!! Les musseliman don't eat pig. At least these others  might make better eating.

Also in the news to-day, Maggie Thatcher stepped into the mystery. She was the right (no pun intended) person at the appropriate time for Britain. She may not have accomplished as much as she wanted, but she set the stage for the British take-off of the 1990's and early 2000's. Most Brits never had it so good. She was a notable player on the world stage at  time before things really got too complicated and when big changes were made. Reputedly she started doing a Ronnie  ( ie dementia) shortly after leaving office and that's why she was so little heard from, while her successors sailed Britain into some very dangerous shoal water.

The coverage of her demise naturally runs the gamut from eulogistic paeans to the almost scatological - one of the best I've noted (and possibly most apropos) was calling for the 'privatization' of her public funeral. It will be a while, though, before we see another one of her kind - lots of women in politics to-day, but none like her.

Another poignant passing of note - a junior staffer in the US foreign Service who was killed in an IED attack on a convoy taking books to a school opening in Zabul province. Somebody's bright-eyed 25 year-old daughter became the latest waste in a war that has gone on far too long. That it takes a convoy of armored vehicles to bring schoolbooks to children is almost as sad as her loss. The explosion took the lives of 6 other Americans, the military there to do 'kinetic' on Afghans who don't appreciate their schoolbooks, or them. If you're going to invade somewhere to make it better, the army should be the first thing removed. America squandered a slim opportunity to do that with malevolence toward Afghans in general after they could find no more enemies. Anne Smedinghoff paid the price for that.

Also in Afghanistan, a NATO bombing raid took the lives of 10 Afghan children. I'm pretty well sure that their parents would mourn their passing too. But their mothers were killed in raid, as well. Whether their fathers were killed,  is questionable - for the Afghan/ISAF troops involved claimed to have killed only 7 insurgents, including a high level commander. So, in 'ourspeak', that means it was their fault for bringing their families to a firefight. That's what the infamous chopper jockey said when he was told he'd chain-gunned two infants. We go around the far side of the world to bomb people and their deaths are their own fault? Incredible. Say the same thing about the 9/11 victims (some of whom could actually have been considered combatants) and even Moslems wouldn't buy it.  Even if they were enemies using human shields, we shouldn't kill kids. Most likely they were only some poor Afghan farmers visited by not necessarily friendly strangers on a mission in the middle of he night, who tried to scare them off with gunfire and received a roof-ful of precision munitions for their trouble.

Such was to-day, the 9th of April.

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