Jonathan Guyer: The Audacity of Breaking Up

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Jonathan Guyer, who blogs at Mideast by Midwest, is the official toonist for The Washington Note.
The Obama administration’s flirtation and probable decision to prosecute Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a military tribunal — which even the military thinks is a bad idea — has been one of the many issues that has Guyer on the edge of wanting to break up with Obama.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

28 comments on “Jonathan Guyer: The Audacity of Breaking Up

  1. Carroll says:

    Posted by PissedOffAmerican, Mar 07 2010, 1:09PM – Link >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Wow..all this attention, I’m flattered anything I say is that important!
    Yep, POA sweetness has a old problem, with “me” not Israel. And it’s personal, not political. I don’t feel the ‘personal guilt’ over the jews and the holocaust that he wants me to feel, tries to force me to feel. I don’t think the whole world was responsible and that the whole world should pay for it forever, just the people who did it. That is some kind of blow to sweetie’s personal identity as Jew and the deference and non questioning he thinks the Jews, and he by extention, are entitled to. And of course his idea is that I am one of those superior stuck up southern gentiles, an air head debutante, like the gentiles who wouldn’t give his father a job back in the olds days…before I was even born.
    Sweetness actually knows nothing about my relationships with the jews who are part of my personal life or how I think of them.
    And yea he did call me a ‘fucking bitch, a ‘cunt’ hoped I would ‘die’ and a few slur Hebrew terms referring to gentiles’ I didn’t understand and so forth….like nadine’s “A goy blebt a goy as the old saying goes”.. a few post ago…whatever that means.
    Because I said a terrible anti semitic thing!….that Israel was treating the Palestines like the nazis treated the Jews in the ghettos.
    Too bad…it’s true. OTOH you will never see me using slurs to attack an individual or to define jews, blacks, muslims or anyone else because of their race or creed. When I attack zionist, and that’s the ‘group’ of Jews I do attack, I attack their mentality and reasoning and myths used politically to further their agenda.
    But the worst of the worst!…I question! I challenge the idea that the holocaust or the victimhood history justifies what Israel and any of the jews or zionist or any other supporters are doing and have done to the Palestines and others.
    Aside from sweeties personal reasons that’s what motivates the smear gang the most..Hasbara’s No. 2 below:
    2.Challenging the portrayal of an alternative narrative, and attempting to keep the zionist narrative as the dominant one
    And to do that they have to use No 1.:
    1.Smearing/defaming critics of Israel, aka, attacking the messenger.
    I ‘m sticking to Walt’s advice about grabbing the third rail…keeping your sense of humor.
    Onward dragon slayers!

    Reply

  2. questions says:

    Nadine, ever talk to a reformed smoker? An ex-Mormon? Anyone who has ever left anything?
    The process of leaving is an alienation from the familiar, from the self, that must be defended by repudiation in fairly violent terms.
    On the other hand, I don’t deny the existence of radical instigators for all sorts of causes. Radicalism is a potent motivator, and instigators need motivated joiners and followers. So the rhetoric and the action spiral upwards in a game of escalation dominance.
    It’s not in the gods, it’s in the instigators. It’s not in the religion. It’s in the instigators. It’s not in the things the instigators blame, it’s in the instigators.
    People can be pushed to do stupid shit like crash their planes into IRS buildings over legal disputes that have nothing to do with the IRS and everything to do with tax law set by Congress and all that goes into congressional procedure. One doesn’t simply blame the gods for the plane crash.

    Reply

  3. questions says:

    Gender is a continuum. We are all at times male and at times female. It’s a complicated issue that will require a lot of words.
    (end of satire)
    Thanks, Paul, for noting the miles of difference between Sweetness and WigWag and Nadine. Even WigWag and Nadine have significant differences.
    Sweetness seems to think that Israel needs to change its behavior in some as yet undetermined ways. Nadine thinks everything Israel does is properly defensive and the Palestinians are badly used by their leaders. WigWag has provoked by saying that defeat should be accepted, but I think there’s a core of decency in WigWag that would like a reasonable settlement but refuses any risk to Israel and so accepts Israeli action despite its unpleasance.
    None of these positions could be called the same, no guile, no lying or cheating….

    Reply

  4. nadine says:

    Guys, the Arabs are not monolithic and they’re not a race. I have never said a single “racist” thing about them. What most of you automatically call “racist” has nothing to do with racism — it has to do with violation of PC rules that insist you regard every Arab and Persian as moderate or potential moderates, if only the true fault, which MUST reside in Israel, is removed.
    I just take Hamas, Hizbullah and Fatah seriously in their own words, and I look at their internal politics. You ignore them entirely. That is not being anti-racist. That is being anti-common-sense.
    Here’s another quote which I bet you’ll call “racist”, from Mosab Hassan Yousef, the “son of Hamas”. I hope he’s not correctly describing every type of Islam. But I believe he’s quite correctly describing the sort of Islam he was raised in:
    “As the son of a Muslim cleric, he says he had reached the conclusion that terrorism can’t be defeated without a new understanding of Islam. Here he echoes other defectors from Islam such as the former Dutch parliamentarian and writer Ayaan Hirsi Ali.
    Do you consider your father a fanatic? “He’s not a fanatic,” says Mr. Yousef. “He’s a very moderate, logical person. What matters is not whether my father is a fanatic or not, he’s doing the will of a fanatic God. It doesn’t matter if he’s a terrorist or a traditional Muslim. At the end of the day a traditional Muslim is doing the will of a fanatic, fundamentalist, terrorist God. I know this is harsh to say. Most governments avoid this subject. They don’t want to admit this is an ideological war.
    “The problem is not in Muslims,” he continues. “The problem is with their God. They need to be liberated from their God. He is their biggest enemy. It has been 1,400 years they have been lied to.”
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703915204575103481069258868.html

    Reply

  5. MarkL says:

    Paul, thanks
    Wigwag is obviously a female, otherwise she wouldn’t dish such catty stuff about Van den Heuvel (background which I really enjoyed reading, btw).

    Reply

  6. Paul Norheim says:

    “Isn’t Sweetness a she also, along with Nadine and Wigwag?”
    Well, there is a lot of gender confusion here: Sweetness seems to
    think that Wigwag is a male, while you and POA seem to believe
    that Sweetness is a female.
    What a mess! I have it from the highest authority (Sun Ra) that
    Wig is a female, and Sweetness a male. Hope this clears up this
    issue once and for all.

    Reply

  7. MarkL says:

    Isn’t Sweetness a she also, along with Nadine and Wigwag?
    I agree there’s a huge gap between them.
    For God’s sake, Wigwag thinks the Jews ought to firebomb Gaza—that’s probably a more extreme position than Nadine takes.
    I think there’s no question that Carroll has strayed over the line into making anti-semitic comments.. but so what? People say rough stuff on this blog. I don’t want thought police here.
    There’s a lot of racism coming from Nadine’s crowd too.
    Now, the guy who thinks Jews are running Obama’s administration, starting with Krugman???
    THAT’s a brownshirt.

    Reply

  8. Paul Norheim says:

    “No, Paul, the only difference between Sweetness and Nadine is
    one of presentation.”
    Read his posts, POA, and you’ll see that his positions on the
    Gaza invasion, blockade, settlements, treatment of Palestinians
    etc. are oceans apart from Nadine. To me it looks like Sweetness
    highly regret and openly disagrees with the current
    developments in Israel. In a polarized climate like TWN, he may
    not make these arguments in exchanges with you, but if you
    study his recent discussions with Nadine, you have to be
    colorblind not to see the differences.
    “Correct me if I’m wrong, but in “Sweetness’s” original personna
    presented to us, she was far more rabidly zionist.”
    Can’t remember exactly. I remember being annoyed a couple of
    times in the past by what I regarded as his overeagerness to
    address anti-Semitism, just like I would assume that you get a
    bit annoyed when I address it – as if I am falling into a trap set
    up by the Zionists. (I am not), and just like I regret it when you
    tend to excuse some ugly remarks made by people who you
    agree with on a lot of other things (like Carroll and Arthur).
    Perhaps Sweetness was different in the past. Recently he
    admitted that he’ve learned things from opponents and
    modified his positions. Among those he openly said he has
    learned stuff from was, if I remember correctly, a certain
    PissedOffAmerican.
    BTW: Both people like you and DanK frequently use harsh
    language against Israel, but I can’t remember once that
    Sweetness has accused you or him of anti-Semitism. Correct me
    if I’m wrong.
    This racism stuff often gets too emotional. But I sincerely
    believe that once in a while – and especially with regular posters
    – we should clearly state that they have crossed a line. It’s quite
    simple. And whether their bigotry is directed against Jews or
    Arabs is highly irrelevant.
    And if they mix racist tropes with legitimate critique – it’s THEY
    who screw up and distract us, and not the ones who address
    their racism.

    Reply

  9. samuelburke says:

    for the israel apologists out there…here is the issue that is the diadem of israel support here in the u.s, you lose this group and you lose.
    http://mondoweiss.net/2010/03/the-israel-lobby-campus-edition-cal-state-northridge.html
    “I’ve been waiting for this, for heartland America to take its power, for the intelligent and balanced folk out there to insist on fairness. The Denver Post has a great piece by John Kane calling on Christians to decry the injustice in Israel/Palestine. Kane is a professor of religious studies at Regis University in Colorado, and he is joined by other religious figures in this op-ed, including Rob Prince of Progressive Jewish News:
    American Christians for too long have been largely silent about the most dangerous conflict threatening peace in our world: the decades-old crisis in Israel and Palestine.
    …Such “Christian silence” is rooted to a great extent in ignorance of what is actually happening in the Holy Land, and it is also rooted in a legitimate fear of offending Jewish neighbors and fellow citizens.
    Yet those who seek true peace in the Holy Land and who want to stop the spread of ethnic and religious hatreds throughout the Middle East must challenge the sacred pieties and the raw political power that so far have stymied President Obama’s efforts for Middle East peace…
    In responding to the call of the Christian leaders in Israel and Palestine, Christians in this country will also be joining with newly powerful voices in American Judaism, such as the Jewish lobby J Street and the activist group Jewish Voice for Peace. They, too, see this as a new moment, no matter that the headlines remain filled with cycles of terror, of occupation and response, of injustice and violence on both sides in the Holy Land.”

    Reply

  10. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “There is a wide gap between Sweetness” position on Israel, and the opinions of Nadine or WigWag”
    Yes, through guile and covert pretension. But not through motive.
    Correct me if I’m wrong, but in “Sweetness’s” original personna presented to us, she was far more rabidly zionist. And way back then, wasn’t it “Sweetness” that called Carroll a “c*nt” before taking a somewhat lengthy hiatus from this comment section? Or was that “Questions” that threw that invective in Carroll’s direction? I am almost positive it was Sweetness.
    And tell me, what does Carroll’s alleged “anti-semitism” have to do with the flow and content of the conversation up to the point where Sweetness made the accusation? It is blatantly diversionary, and the only logical reason for Sweetness to have made the comment is to deflect from the content of Greenwald’s essay.
    With vague inuendo, Sweetness indicts the entire body of commenters here…..
    “Carroll DOES say these sorts of things about Jews–worse, I’d say–and Samuel Burke doesn’t seem to mind. Nor do many others here on this respectable, semi-mainstream blog”
    You do not see the lightly veiled accusation of anti-semitism contained in that sentence, directed at this vague premise of “many others”.
    No, Paul, the only difference between Sweetness and Nadine is one of presentation. Nadine is quite open and direct with her hasbarist bullshit and bigoted bias. Sweetness is simply more covert, but sans the pretension, just another Nadine.

    Reply

  11. Paul Norheim says:

    “The truth is, even if you could quiet Carroll’s opinions and
    historical citations, you would STILL be blubbering forth with the
    ONLY defense you jackasses seem to be able to launch for
    current Israeli policies. And of course, that is the timeworn
    falsehood you direct at ALL criticism of Israel, that the critic is
    simply anti-semitic.”
    POA, I have no idea how you came to that conclusion. There is a
    wide gap between Sweetness” position on Israel, and the opinions
    of Nadine or WigWag, just like there is a wide gap on the “pro-
    Palestine” side between, say, Dan Kervick and OutragedAmerican
    or samuelburke. More nuance, please!

    Reply

  12. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Good point! OTOH, Carroll DOES say these sorts of things about Jews–worse, I’d say–and Samuel Burke doesn’t seem to mind”
    You exaggerate. No suprise there.
    Having trolled this blog for years now, looking for a legitimate excuse to soil the comment section with your cowardly finger pointing and diversionary whining about anti-semitism, the best you can come up with is a concerted attack on Carroll for her ASTUTE opinions about the corrosive effect Israeli influence is having on our own nation’s body politik, policies, and security.
    Tough shit. You think targeting Carroll belies the over-riding sentiment here, (expressed by the majority, justified by the facts), that is strongly opposed to current Israeli policies and influence upon our own governmental body?
    The truth is, even if you could quiet Carroll’s opinions and historical citations, you would STILL be blubbering forth with the ONLY defense you jackasses seem to be able to launch for current Israeli policies. And of course, that is the timeworn falsehood you direct at ALL criticism of Israel, that the critic is simply anti-semitic. In Carroll’s absence, you would simply target someone else, whomever was, at the time, the most staunch critic of Iraeli policy.
    Carroll is simply a diversionary pathway for you assholes. We now see you shifting the focus to Carroll everytime Israel arises in the debate. Frankly, I’m sick to death of your fuckin’ horseshit, and that of your ilk, such as this lying bigoted hasbarist Nadine, who has poisoned the narrative here with her incessant hasbarist propaganda, lies, and disdainful disregard for the value of Palestinian lifes and welfare.
    You want to see “anti-semitism”??? Then just advocate for Israel to continue down its current path. Our media and the sacks of shit in Washington DC have lost their stranglehold on the truth, and more and more people are awakening to what Israel has become, and how cowardly subservient these bribed and blackmailed “representatives” in DC have become towards AIPAC and its many poisonous tentacles.
    And the best you can come up with today is the same as the best you could come up with yeasterday. You point your finger, and whine about anti-semitism. Keep it up. In the end, if Israel goes down, it won’t be because of anti-semites, it will be because of the Nadines and the Alan Dershowitzes among you.

    Reply

  13. DonS says:

    Once again, linking to Glenn Greenwald, he makes several points on why reversing the KSM venue decision is a disaster:
    http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/03/05/obama/index.html
    And he sees a bigger problem for dems in general:
    “For years, Democrats have failed to grasp the fact that they are perceived as “weak” not because of any specific policies, but because they are perceived — rightly — to believe in nothing (or at least nothing that they claim to believe). It is hard to imagine any act that could more strongly bolster that perception than to watch Barack Obama — yet again — scamper away from his own claimed principles all because the GOP is saying some mean things about him.
    I’m not sure I buy all of that but it’s hard to argue in this instance.

    Reply

  14. ... says:

    quote from glenn greenwald in samuelburkes post
    “and very little
    happens, because, for multiple reasons, this specific type of
    hate-mongering remains basically permitted in American
    political discourse.”
    challenging the kotzabasis’s of the world is an ongoing task made more difficult by the likes of such people having some power in the usa (and the world) politically…

    Reply

  15. Sweetness says:

    Dan…yes to you…and yes re: Kotz

    Reply

  16. Sweetness says:

    SB: “…how many people would treat a
    magazine edited and owned by such a person as a remotely respectable or mainstream publication…”
    Good point! OTOH, Carroll DOES say these sorts of things about Jews–worse, I’d say–and Samuel Burke doesn’t seem to mind. Nor do many others here on this respectable, semi-mainstream blog.

    Reply

  17. samuelburke says:

    Glenn Greenwald speaketh
    “The right kind of bigotry
    BY GLENN GREENWALD
    From the long-time Editor-in-Chief and owner of The New
    Republic, this morning:
    http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/0
    3/06/peretz/index.html
    There were moments–long moments–during the Iraq war
    when I had my doubts. Even deep doubts. Frankly, I couldn’t
    quite imagine any venture requiring trust with Arabs turning out
    especially well. This is, you will say, my prejudice. But some
    prejudices are built on real facts, and history generally proves
    me right. Go ahead, prove me wrong.
    The point here is so obvious that it makes itself. In the bolded
    sentence, replace the word “Arabs” with “Jews” and ask yourself:
    how much time would elapse before the author of such a
    sentence would be vehemently scorned and shunned by all
    decent people, formally condemned by a litany of organizations,
    and have his livelihood placed in jeopardy? Or replace the word
    “Arabs” in that sentence with “Jews” or “blacks” or “Latinos” or
    even “whites” or virtually any other identifiable demographic
    group and ask yourself this: how many people would treat a
    magazine edited and owned by such a person as a remotely
    respectable or mainstream publication (notwithstanding the
    several decent journalists employed there)? Yet Marty Peretz
    spits out the most bigoted sentiments of this type — and he’s
    been doing this for years, as is well known — and very little
    happens, because, for multiple reasons, this specific type of
    hate-mongering remains basically permitted in American
    political discourse. ”

    Reply

  18. samuelburke says:

    the Bolsheviks were always haters, and they remain haters to this
    day.
    they were born hating and continnue to hate to this day, just look
    at all they stand for.
    and dont deny your pedigree, you know where you have spawned
    from.

    Reply

  19. williams says:

    Whatever Obama does or doesn’t do, it doesn’t mean the death of hope. Many progressives and others voted for Obama because we believed that he would represent and bring about the implementation of more democratic values. If he isn’t doing that — whatever the actual reason may be — it’s terribly disappointing. It means primarily, however, that his role as a leader in this regard has died. It definitely doesn’t mean that either we or our hope have died. True change arrives only through acts of courage, persistence, work, and patience.

    Reply

  20. Dan Kervick says:

    “…defending liberal values and the democratic and entrepreneurial mores of Western societies from the mortal danger that rises from the barbaric atavism of fanatical Islam.”
    Mortal danger … right. You might as well say that the English language faces a mortal danger from Portuguese. Your sense of proportion and connection with the real world are seriously impaired.
    From my own seat here in America, I don’t see many fanatical Muslims about. What I do see is a danger to liberal values rising from the diseased fears of the neurotically terrified. My concern is not with David Petraeus, who is just doing a job the civilian government gave to him, but with the poisonous weakness of the cowardly right, who seem ready to hand over their most valuable possessions to soldiers like Petraeus, if the latter promise to protect the relatively insignificant hides of the former.

    Reply

  21. kotzabasis says:

    It’s the “leg-breaking soldiers in fatigues” that are indefatigably and with great sacrifices defending liberal values and the democratic and entrepreneurial mores of Western societies from the mortal danger that rises from the barbaric atavism of fanatical Islam. But it is not surprising that the ideologues of the serially bankrupt left, like Kervick, would lambast great Americans, like General Petraeus, with their vitriolic sarcasm. It’s obvious that Kervick as a hubristic member of the gang of General “Betraeus” is divinely allocating from his Olympian abode his moral legless strictures upon great successful Americans who stand on, and leap with, strong legs. And it’s clear that Kervick with his intellectually and morally rickety feet cannot stand and ‘fight’ on the superb motto of Virgil, “Tu ne cede malis sed contra audentior ito”.

    Reply

  22. Mr.Murder says:

    Where’s the Darth Vader mask in this cartoon? Don’t tell me Lucas threatened to sue you…
    KSM trial should be done on a TV series, with Fred Thompson prosecuting?
    The constitutional antiquity is done for!
    Imagine Americans being subject to tribunals overseas! We’re lowering the bar!
    Wonder which of Obama’s lectures covered this topic?

    Reply

  23. Dan Kervick says:

    If we can’t even try routine thugs like KSM in the American court system anymore, we might as well turn our whole governing system over to the military, and satisfy the unfulfilled longings of our right wing brethren. We can have Mitt Romney-style military-run diplomacy, along with a separate kangaroo court system run by leg-breaking soldiers in fatigues and the shadowy vermin who run our extralegal security and intelligence services.
    Maybe we should just acclaim David Petraeus Supreme Consul and Lord High Protector and be done with it.

    Reply

  24. nadine says:

    Jackie, The administration doesn’t have a choice about “caving in”. Holder made a dog’s breakfast of the affair. Holder didn’t consult with the stakeholders, didn’t anticipate the most predicable opposition, and didn’t even think through his own legal reasoning for how he wanted apportion prisoners to civilian trials vs. military tribunals.
    The Mayor of New York got the barest warning that this was coming, and the Police Commissioner wasn’t even consulted. All the national security hawks are screaming. Most of the country thinks that trying KSM in civilian court is a stupid idea (check the polls). Now Congress is threatening to cut off funding.
    The policy has become untenable. The administration has no choice but to back down. They haven’t yet admitted that KSM’s tribunal will be held at Gitmo, but 5’ll get you 10 that will happen too. It’s just the course of least resistance at this point — the cheapest, most secure, and least politically fraught alternative.
    Obama likes to say “Change is hard” but he doesn’t seem to understand that because it’s hard, you better do your homework before you try it.

    Reply

  25. ... says:

    ”’change”’ as sick joke… it isn’t funny to most folks though… it is the death of hope, the exact opposite of what he sold himself as…

    Reply

  26. samuelburke says:

    thank you Obamaton.

    Reply

  27. Jackie says:

    Steve,
    A couple of posts ago I said I heard you on ATC on NPR and agreed with your view. This is the worst kind of cave-in to the mouth frothers. I do not think our justice system is so weak it would fall apart if it prosecuted KSM.
    Is this government for dummies?

    Reply

  28. indir says:

    The Obama administration’s flirtation and probable decision to prosecute Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a military tribunal — which even the military thinks is a bad idea — has been one of the many issues that has Guyer on the edge of wanting to break up with Obama

    Reply

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