A brief Trump policy statement & book-length question in response

[ by Charles Cameron — also a tweet asking for a DoubleQuote & getting one ] . As so often, Part I of this post is a somewhat playful teaser for Part II, which is where my real interest is to be found. Part I, then, is about someone inquiring about two tweets Donald Trump […] Read more »

Destructive Witnesses: JW, IS, Saudis, Brits, Byzantines

[ by Charles Cameron — religions taking other religions apart, stone by stone, image by image, song by song ] . Some recently converted Jehovah’s Witnesses appear to have destroyed the altars of indigenous Otomi people in Mexico, an anthopologist has stated: Assailants have damaged an ancient Otomi Indian religious site in Mexico, toppling stone […] Read more »

Guest Post: Why the United States cannot put Boots on the Ground to Fight ISIS

[Mark Safranski / “zen“] Today, I’m pleased to offer a guest post by LtCol. Bob Weimann, USMC (ret.) .  Weimann is the former Commanding Officer, Kilo Co., 3/1 and Weapons Company 3/1. He also served as a Marine Security Force Company commanding officer, an infantry battalion Operations Officer and the Executive Officer of 1/6 during Desert Storm. […] Read more »

Orlando Tweets Two

[ by Charles Cameron — on a variety of other perspectives ] . Once again, my point is that there’s a whole lot of going on going on, and it’s worth getting a wide-angle view.. which means multiple perspectives, including those not your own: Good column by @sulliveiw. Before we knew much about #Orlando, every […] Read more »

Orlando Tweets One

[ by Charles Cameron — on the variety of possible motives ] . On twitter alone, there’s far too much going on as we scramble to understand the Orlando massacre for anyone to make a useful summary, although I must say that Rukmini Callimachi‘s twitter feed since yesterday has been superb. My own first assortment […] Read more »

Do unto yourselves more of what you would do unto others?

[ by Charles Cameron — IRA kills more Catholics, IS kills more Muslims ] . ** Is there anything we can learn from either one of these situations that would shed light on the other? Are there other instances of this pattern? How quickly can we take note of this effect in future, to benefit […] Read more »

Romance as a precursor drug, and as a cure, for terror

[ by Charles Cameron — a scary thought for a poet, given that “The lunatic, the lover, and the poet / are of imagination all compact” ] . Considering the matter of altered states of consciousness as they relate to terrorism, I’m reminded of one of Shankara’s aphorisms: Who is the greatest hero? He who […] Read more »

A stunning reversal

[ by Charles Cameron — Dabiq vs the Qur’an — again, it’s the formal precision of the reversal that inrerests me ] . ** It is not the fact that the Islamic State delights in killing infidels that surprises me, it’s the utter reversal of the Qur’an’s own emphasis on the value of a single […] Read more »

Human Sacrifice and State-Building

[by Mark Safranski / “zen“] A while back I had a longish post that argued that the mass executions practiced by ISIS drew from the long pagan tradition of ritualistic human sacrifice. Today in the news, some social scientists see evidence of human sacrifice as the catalyst for establishing and maintaining stratified, hierarchical and (usually) oppressive […] Read more »

The Age of the Lone Wolf is Far From Over

More belated catch up posting. It has been a very busy few weeks between travel and the horrible events in Brussels. The below piece is one that Foreign Policy commissioned to look specifically at ISIS use of tactics, pointing out that while the Brussels and Paris attacks are part of a specific campaign and cell, […] Read more »