March 15, 2005


The Angry Arab blogs about a street protest yesterday where Bahiyya, Rafiq Hariri's sister, spoke to the crowd. Much to what may have been the dismay of the US government, her remarks were not anti-Syrian.

Posted by natasha at March 15, 2005 07:35 PM | International | Technorati links |

Just posted this on my blog and was trying to raise awareness on the issue in the blogosphere. Sorry it's not related to the post on Lebanon.

Today, the United States Senate voted to allow drilling for oil in the Artic National Wildlife Refuge. Below is the roll call vote which ended up 51-49. While it's no surprise that Mary Landrieu crossed the aisle, I'd like to know why Senators Akaka and Inouye voted against the amendment. Though Republicans have made some gains recently, the last time I checked Hawaii was a blue state, and neither of the Senators had any strong opposition. What gives? I hope the two Senators are looking forward to the pillaging of Waikiki Beach or Diamond Head, or even Waimea Canyon. They could be next.

Amendment Number:
S.Amdt. 168 to to S.Con.Res. 18 (Appropriations resolution FY2006, Budget )
Statement of Purpose:
To strike section 201(a)(4) relative to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Grouped By Vote Position
YEAs ---49
Baucus (D-MT)Bayh (D-IN)Biden (D-DE)Bingaman (D-NM)Boxer (D-CA)Byrd (D-WV)Cantwell (D-WA)Carper (D-DE)Chafee (R-RI)Clinton (D-NY)Coleman (R-MN)Collins (R-ME)Conrad (D-ND)Corzine (D-NJ)Dayton (D-MN)DeWine (R-OH)Dodd (D-CT)
Dorgan (D-ND)Durbin (D-IL)Feingold (D-WI)Feinstein (D-CA)Harkin (D-IA)Jeffords (I-VT)Johnson (D-SD)Kennedy (D-MA)Kerry (D-MA)Kohl (D-WI)Lautenberg (D-NJ)Leahy (D-VT)Levin (D-MI)Lieberman (D-CT)Lincoln (D-AR)McCain (R-AZ)Mikulski (D-MD)
Murray (D-WA)Nelson (D-FL)Nelson (D-NE)Obama (D-IL)Pryor (D-AR)Reed (D-RI)Reid (D-NV)Rockefeller (D-WV)Salazar (D-CO)Sarbanes (D-MD)Schumer (D-NY)Smith (R-OR)Snowe (R-ME)Stabenow (D-MI)Wyden (D-OR)

NAYs ---51
Akaka (D-HI)Alexander (R-TN)Allard (R-CO)Allen (R-VA)Bennett (R-UT)Bond (R-MO)Brownback (R-KS)Bunning (R-KY)Burns (R-MT)Burr (R-NC)Chambliss (R-GA)Coburn (R-OK)Cochran (R-MS)Cornyn (R-TX)Craig (R-ID)Crapo (R-ID)DeMint (R-SC)
Dole (R-NC)Domenici (R-NM)Ensign (R-NV)Enzi (R-WY)Frist (R-TN)Graham (R-SC)Grassley (R-IA)Gregg (R-NH)Hagel (R-NE)Hatch (R-UT)Hutchison (R-TX)Inhofe (R-OK)Inouye (D-HI)Isakson (R-GA)Kyl (R-AZ)Landrieu (D-LA)Lott (R-MS)
Lugar (R-IN)Martinez (R-FL)McConnell (R-KY)Murkowski (R-AK)Roberts (R-KS)Santorum (R-PA)Sessions (R-AL)Shelby (R-AL)Specter (R-PA)Stevens (R-AK)Sununu (R-NH)Talent (R-MO)Thomas (R-WY)Thune (R-SD)Vitter (R-LA)Voinovich (R-OH)Warner (R-VA)

Posted by: Ken Camp at March 16, 2005 12:19 PM

OK, this is related to the post on Lebanon.

Why should the US be dismayed that Hariri's sister happens to be an asshat? Anyone can have such a sibling.

Pretty obvious which way the wind is blowing in Lebanon, Hariri's sister's opinion aside.

Posted by: Alois at March 17, 2005 09:27 AM

And, while we're at it, one good source deserves another: The Arab Street Goes Crazy!

Posted by: Alois at March 17, 2005 11:43 AM

Yeah, did you by chance miss the end of that article:

"... The president has been gentle on the subject [of democracy] with Abdullah, a close U.S. ally. Jordan is a constitutional monarchy in which citizens have limited political rights."

People who actually know about the situation don't think Bush had much anything to do with the situation in Lebanon. Unless he personally ordered Hariri's assassination, this situation has been building for a while.

And in case you missed something else, Lebanon is already a parliamentary democracy, whose legitimate government invited the Syrians to help stabilize the country in less certain times (even if their record has been, to put it mildly, mixed), and the Lebanese already had the right to decide to change their leadership. I know it's conventional wisdom that Israel is the only democracy in the mideast, but both Lebanon and Turkey have real elections in every sense of the word. If you want to get down to it, even Iran is more democratic than Jordan, which is a small country with few resources that has to be nice to anyone that has the power to reach out and squash them.

There have been movements towards more representative government in the area before, but mostly, the people heading those movements got assassinated. I'm not handing Bush any prizes for not killing people who'd like to agitate for better government. In fact the setup they left Iraq with, requiring a 2/3 majority to form a government, likely guarantees a permanent deadlock and is practiced by no other country in the world.

What a record.

Posted by: natasha at March 18, 2005 12:04 AM