“ Many governments – some governments deal with us because they fear us, some because they respect us, most because they need us. We are still essentially, as has been said before, the indispensable nation. So other nations will continue to deal with us. They will continue to work with us. We will continue to share sensitive information with one another. Is this embarrassing? Yes. Is it awkward? Yes. Consequences for U.S. foreign policy? I think fairly modest. ”
Sec. of Defense Robert Gates, http://smallwarsjournal.com/blog/2010/11/quotable-secretary-gates-on-wi/
How is this a betrayal? Obama made it very clear during the campaign that he would begin withdrawing from Iraq in order to focus on Afghanistan - a war he considered just. I may not agree - but I’m incredibly frustrated with the “left” continuously projecting their own beliefs on Obama, and castigating him when he “betrays” them. Obama the Candidate and Obama the President are not the same person as Obama the Savior Of The Left - the latter is a figment of our collective imagination.
Worst case scenario - we are in Afghanistan another 10 years. Best case - Obama ends both wars, honorably, before the end of his first term. I still have Hope.
“If we had wanted Bush’s wars, and contractors, and corruption, we could have voted for John McCain. At least we would have seen our foe facing us, not felt him at our back, as now we do. The Republicans are given a great boon by this new war. They can use its cost to say that domestic needs are too expensive to be met—health care, education, infrastructure. They can say that military recruitments from the poor make job creation unnecessary. They can call it Obama’s war when it is really theirs. They can attack it and support it at the same time, with equal advantage.I cannot vote for any Republican. But Obama will not get another penny from me, or another word of praise, after this betrayal. And in all this I know that my disappointment does not matter. What really matters are the lives of the young men and women he is sending off to senseless deaths.”
UP is children’s story about an introverted boy who meets an outgoing an adventurous young girl. The two grow up together and eventually marry. They share a love for kids; she works as a photographer, and he a balloonist, at the zoo. Their bond is carefree and loving.
When they try to conceive a child of their own, the wife is sadly diagnosed as infertile. Instead of adopting, they save their meager earnings for travel and adventure, however, life’s unexpected calamities prevents them from pocketing enough. When the now-greying husband finally manages to purchase vacation tickets to surprise his wife with, we learn that she has been diagnosed with a soon-to-be-fatal cancer, and hospitalized.
The widowed old man settles into a lonely routine. His few social interactions involve keeping businessman an contractors from taking his home and demolishing it to make way for the modern jungle around him. While protecting the pieces of home that remind him of his late-wife, he accidentally injures one of the contractors. Summoned to court, the old man is labeled a menace, and ordered to move into a retirement community.
Real UPlifting story, eh?
Thankfully these first 10 minutes end, and after you’ve smeared the tears off your face, the rest of the movie is a lighter and enjoyable, though not without more heartbreak & adult themes (murder, abandonment by a father, etc).
Ay Iran is the unofficial national anthem of Iran. The Shah had his own (praising him, of course) and the Islamic Republic has another. However, Iranians everywhere learn and sing this song as a symbol of their pride and identity outside whatever opressive regime happens to control them at the time. The best analogue for us would be America the Beautiful - but imagine a Sarah Palin led coup had replaced The Star Spangled Banner with some song praising the coming rapture.
I will never forget how moving it was when a wedding I went to in Tehran broke out singing Ay Iran. It was a simple act, but to me, the outsider, it seemed like an extremely meaningful, though simple, act of political defiance.
I hear the protesters are in the streets singing it tonight, and my thoughts are with them.