Benazir And Islamofascism

Blasts Kill Dozens After Bhutto Returns to Pakistan New York Times Two explosions ... killing 100 people or more ... near a truck carrying the former prime minister ... some of the bodies were ripped apart. ... After an initial small explosion, a huge blast came just feet from the front of the truck carrying Ms. Bhutto ... The blast shattered windows in her vehicle ... as she inched her way through the city atop a bullet-proof truck. ... “It’s really overwhelming, and we haven’t even reached the main crowd,” she said before the explosions on Thursday ... stepping down onto the tarmac at around 2 p.m. local time and praying before an upheld Koran. ... the crowds were larger than in 1986, when she made her first return from exile ... the first Muslim woman in the world to become prime minister ... Ms. Bhutto waved to supporters as music pumped out from loudspeakers, and supporters danced in the road. ... The crowd was overwhelmingly working class, and included many young men who said they were unemployed and had traveled hundreds of kilometers, camping out overnight on the road to the airport to await her arrival. ... “I am glad that there’s been no disruption of the welcome,” said Ms. Bhutto ... “It is unprecedented,” said Aftar Rana, a senior party member from Punjab province, looking down at the crowd. “I think we will sweep the elections. People have come from everywhere.” ... Raja Munir Ahmed, 42, a real estate agent, said he had come from Mirpur in the Pakistani-administered part of Kashmir. “It was a journey of 1,500 kilometers,” or 930 miles, “and all along we saw buses and cars carrying Peoples’ Party flags” ...... “Dictatorship is breathing its last and soon democracy under Benazir Bhutto will flourish”

My heart goes out to Benazir. She is one of my favorite politicians in the neighborhood called South Asia, my hood. She is one of my favorite politicians in the world. I have long thought of her as the face of Islam that I would like to see going into the future. Why only Islam? I have thought of her as the face of South Asia as I would like to see going into the future. I have wanted Nepal to get itself a Benazir. I have wanted India to get itself a Benazir. She symbolizes progress and future and forward thinking. She is appealing to the point of glamorous. She has meant to me growing up that you can be from South Asia and not have to apologize for it. She was a woman from the neighborhood who could hold her own with any white leader on the planet. She was savvy, modern, educated. She was plain glamorous. She is.

When her father was hanged, that started a revolution in Nepal. To be Bhutto is to be Kennedy, to be Gandhi, to be Clinton. You have to be a South Asian to truly appreciate the magic of her last name.

She has meant that South Asia can also hope to rise on the world stage. It might take a while, it might take a lifetime, a generation, but at least with her leadership, we would be pointing in the right direction, we would be going ahead full speed.

The fascists in Japan, Germany and Italy were militarily defeated. There was no other way. Only then it was possible to plant democracy in those countries. Maybe the neocons are right, maybe that is the only way to deal also with Islamofascism.

The Islamofascists think Musharraf is too secular but at least he is a military dictator, Benazir is too far away on the spectrum, further away than Musharraf. They don't like the smell of her. On top of that, she is a woman.

Karachi is the New York City of Pakistan. It is not the official capital, but it is the heart of the country. There is New York City, there is Mumbai, and there is Karachi. It helps the Islamofascists to strike in a big city like Karachi. They generate a larger media flurry. That makes it "spectacular." That is their sick idea of a Kodak moment, made for the camera.

There is a definite physical element to fighting Islamofascism. How do you track them down? How do you take them down? How do you prevent their attacks? Military, intelligence and law enforcement, local and global, have to work in intensely cooperative ways, and in imaginative ways to mutate with the virus to get up to the challenge. I don't rule that out. But that is still killing mosquitoes. That is still the very small part of the picture.

The bigger challenge remains to drain the swamp. The fascists in Japan, Germany and Italy were states with standing armies. Islamofascists fantasize about becoming states with standing armies, but they are not that and likely never will be. Afghanistan under Taliban was the closest they got. All the physical damage they will inflict will be while they fantasize.

Turning every Arab country into a democracy the progressive way is the only way to drain the swamp. Ideas have to be fought with ideas. Moderate Islam has to talk loud.

The losing war that the democracies are playing in the case of Burma looks very bad for the war on terror. The frontline soldiers, the nonviolent Burmese activists for democracy, should not have to think a few million dollars is too much money. Bur right now that is what. They don't even have a few hundred thousand.

The progressive way is the grassroots way, the war with communications technology way.

Out Of The Box Thinking On Burma: Total Engagement?
India Has To Get Into The Business Of Aggressively Exporting Democracy
Bush Meeting Dalai Lama: Is That All You Can Do For Burma?
Burma: 400, 000 Members, 400,000 Dollars
Burma: Time For Nonviolent Guerilla Warfare
Burma: Time For Hyper Action
The World Is Failing Burma
Burma: Than Shwe Is Going To The Hague
Britain Is Betraying Burma
Burma: Time For All Out Sanctions By All Powers
Burma: Momentum Is Key To Victory
Shame On The Top Politicians Of The World: Burma Asks For More
In Solidarity With The Burmese People

Where Is Bin Laden?
Pakistan Is Getting Interesting And Obama Might Have Shaken Things
Engaging Third World Dictators
Flatten It Out
The McCain Doctrine: Keep The Swamp, Keep The Mosquitoes
Hillary Messed Up On Iraq, And Al Qaeda Is Strong, America Insecure
I Agree With Neocons, The War On Terror Is Same Magnitude As Cold War
Immigration Is Today's Civil Rights Movement
Iraq, Energy, Global Warming: All Interlinked
If There Is Another 9/11 Style Attack
Al Qaeda Strikes India, Wants Hindu-Muslim Riots
Bush Nabbed Saddam, His Mandate Was To Nab Osama

In The News

Silicon Valley Start-Ups Awash in Dollars, Again Silicon Valley’s math is getting fuzzy again. .... Internet companies with funny names, little revenue and few customers are commanding high prices. And investors, having seemingly forgotten the pain of the first dot-com bust, are displaying symptoms of the disorder known as irrational exuberance. ..... Facebook ... being valued by investors at up to $15 billion. That is nearly half the value of Yahoo, a company with 38 times the number of employees and, based on estimates of Facebook’s income, 32 times the revenue. .... Google, which recently surged past $600 a share, is now worth more than I.B.M., a company with eight times the revenue. ..... Greed, fear and a desperate rush to pick the next big winner are all adding fuel to the fire that is Silicon Valley’s resurgence. .... the latest set of society-changing online tools .... copycat companies, half-baked business plans and overpriced buyouts. ... seasoned financial professionals are seeming to indulge in some strange instinct to turn away from the science and lean instead on the speculation. ... venture capitalists whose coffers are overflowing with money from university endowments and hedge funds .... More than 1.3 billion people around the world use the Internet, many with speedy broadband connections and a willingness to immerse themselves in digital culture. ... Some trace the start of the new bubble to eBay’s $3.1 billion acquisition of the Internet telephone start-up Skype in 2005. .. This month, eBay conceded it had grossly overpaid for Skype by about $1.43 billion .... Google’s acquisition of YouTube last year for $1.65 billion ... More than 205 million people visit YouTube each month .... YouTube would bring in $135 million in revenue next year .... Internet companies “are buying users instead of revenue and profitability” .... Internet entrepreneurs ... practices that had seemingly been discredited during the first boom ... in the first dot-com gold rush, Internet companies did not have to make money to acquire serious investments dollars. Now that once again is true. ....Twitter .. the company was not currently focused on making money and that no one in the company was even working on how to do so. ... the $100 million valuation that investors gave to the Internet genealogy site, founded last year in Los Angeles by a veteran of PayPal. ........ the financing game is best played by avoiding actual revenues ... “It’s a screwed-up incentive structure, just like you had in the first bubble” .... Ning .. recently valued by investors at more than $200 million, mainly because its main backer and founder, Marc Andreessen ..... Mr. Andreessen argues on his blog that there is no bubble and that the high prices represent a rational desire to stake a claim in the potentially huge markets of the future. ..... a seemingly inexhaustible flood of capital into Silicon Valley is helping to power the boom. Venture capitalists are flush with cash from institutional investors, eager for Internet-style returns on their money. ..... “The upward valuations pressure is the result of decisions being made by people wearing suits in cities like New York and Boston who would never ever meet with start-ups