Sludge Report #105 – The Fall Of Babylon
In This Edition: The Fall Of Babylon - And Then There Is Nostradamus’s Take - How Could It Come To This? - Scoop’s Top 30 - There Is No Other News - Is Their Time Both To Mourn And Time To Save The Slaughter Of More Innocents – Sludge’s Voices: Conversation On Pearl Harbour Comparisons
NOTE: Authors of this report will be anonymous and wide ranging, and occasionally finely balanced. Indeed you are invited to contribute: The format is as a reporters notebook. It will be published as and when material is available. C.D. Sludge can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Sludge Report is available as a free email service..Click HERE - http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/myscoop/ to subscribe...
Sludge Report #105
The Fall Of Babylon
Anyone who has watched the occasional session of any Christian TV channel will probably know that the Bible says that “no man can know the hour of the second coming”.
However, that hasn’t stopped Christians wondering when, and making claims about the time and place on an incessant basis.
And today, as the minds of the teeming millions of Christians and Muslims all over planet earth ponder yesterday’s events in New York City, a familiar piece of scripture will be foremost in many minds: The Book of Revelations Chapter 18, and St John’s account of the fall of Babylon.
In it St John describes ship captains looking from afar at a burning city of commerce that once ruled over kings, but which now has fallen.
For Christians this prophecy is significant as it symbolises the victory of good over evil. The Fall of Babylon is also significant in Christianity as it is the immediate precursor to the second coming, the victory over Satan, and a period of 1000 years of peace.
If you haven’t already done so it is worth pulling out a bible and taking a look. Even if you think prophecy and St John’s Book of Revelations, complete rubbish or irrelevant, it is worth putting today’s events in this context as many of the significant players in this drama – and almost certainly the terrorists themselves - clearly are.
And Then There Is Nostradamus’s Take
"In the City of God there will be a great thunder, two brothers torn apart by chaos, while the fortress endures, the great leader will succumb.", "The third big war will begin when the big city is burning." - Nostradamus 1654
And that of..
How could it come to this?
This morning Sludge is wondering.
Where do people who could do something like this come from? Who makes them? God or men?
And while you are asking yourself this, you might wonder too how, and if, they can ever be made to stop.
Scoop’s Top 30
Scoop yesterday experienced completely unprecedented New Zealand traffic interest in a foreign news story, with three times normal NZ traffic levels and every single one of our top 30 stories this afternoon relate to this subject. The following was our top ten.
- 1: Scoop
Images: Manhattan Burning
- 2: Scoop Images: BBC TV Images Of US Terrorist Attack
- 3: NEWSFLASH - Another Aircraft Crashes In Ohio
- 4: Eyewitness Report - Escape From Manhattan
- 5: Afghan News Network Claims bin Laden Responsible
- 6: Carlos The Jackal Called for Attacks on USA
- 7: Eyewitness Report – Escape From Manhattan (Part 2)
- 8: Middle East News - Japanese Red Army Responsible
- 9: Scoop Images: Escape From Manhattan
- 10: Eyewitness Report From A Kiwi In Downtown NYC
There Is No Other News
And so it appears there is no other news. Yesterday NZ’s Parliament even tried to adjourn early. But ACT’s Richard Prebble said that doing so would mean giving in to the terrorists.
Clearly he wanted to give them a good telling off and Sludge for one is supportive of this sentiment.
In this newshound’s experience there is only one other news event that comes close to having this great, and as sudden, an impact. And that is the early 1991 beginnings of the Gulf War, the invasion of Kuwait. Sludge to this day remember the first wire stories coming through and the sense of inevitability and dread that accompanied them.
Then a different George Bush was in the White House. Remarkably other circumstances – a global economic slowdown – are also identical. Sludge still has the wire stories and photos which came through the wire in the days that followed.
Today as Sludge ponders this, fears are rising that we will very soon see something similar unfold.
“It’s War In The Middle East” headlines will again come through the wire services. US and allied pilots will be dispatched to an already more explosive than pure gun-powder Middle Eastern cauldron of fear and violence.
But the last thing that the world needs now is more dead innocents.
And yet that is precisely where we are headed.
Time Both To Mourn And Time To Save The Slaughter Of More Innocents
US retaliation it would appear is in reality almost inevitable.
Last Night on TV1’s Holmes Show Special, a security expert spoke of the need to act decisively and within 72 hours in order to show the world that “America will not be cowered”.
Unfortunately, when expressions like “Rooting Out Terrorism” are used in this context, they are code “Bombing Middle Eastern People”.
And as we are dealing with the same military organisation who claims that it does not know the address of the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, no matter how well guided their laser bombs are, innocents will die.
C.D. Sludge meanwhile also hates to think what is going to happen with the World Bank, IMF protests planned in a fortnight in Washington D.C. Will an angry fearful US public now turn on the anti-globalisation movement? Is the US headed for a new period of McCarthyism and public paranoia?
And the truth is the U.S. Public do have reason to be fearful.
This is undoubtedly a military-style act of terrorism, an act of war. U.S. airplanes have become weapons to be used against them. This is an attack at the heart of the financial and military pillars of the U.S. establishment. And it is intended to be the crippling blow that it has been.
And while it is a harsh observation, it is nonetheless true, that George W. Bush Junior will now have a political warrant backed by an overwhelming majority of Americans, to proceed with precisely what his political analysts might consider a wet-dream scenario.
President Bush the younger bravely arrives back in the capital to take over a mourning country. After consulting his dad, he takes the same decisive action and authorises an air strike. Better to attack sooner than later, thereby preventing the enemy having time to prepare and disperse their forces. Not only the terrorists need be targeted, but those who harbour them.
We then will have a re-run the same old script, only this time using greater force. And with the same crew on the bridge, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Colin Powell, the only new player being George Junior
Is this what they wanted?
As M wisely concludes at the end of the attached discussion, and T loudly argues in its substance, yesterday’s events properly initially deserve an emotional response, and not a head one. We should for now be taking time for healing and contemplation.
But Sludge wonders if there is time.
Time both to mourn and time to save the slaughter of more innocents.
Sludge’s Voices: Conversation On Pearl Harbour Comparisons
NOTE: Attached is a conversation which took place across the continents today on issues touched on in the above article. These are hard issues that need to be confronted hear and it is far from surprising that they cause some controversy as the following exchange shows. If it is not clear M is in New York. The rest of the participants are here in New Zealand.
I can't help thinking that there is a possibility that, like Pearl Harbour, this tragedy may have been allowed to happen in order to justify a full scale war in the Middle East...
The fact that George Bush is so quick to come back to Washington is a little suspicious methinks. How does he know he is safe to go home?
I don't think we should be taking a political economic or any other slant on this bloody tragedy yet. Please leave it till the dust has at least settled. It is absolutely terrible. M will need to deal with it and recoup from a major trauma, and my heart goes out to everyone there. This is a time for messages of love not war.
But if our silence enables the dogs of war a free shot at their objective... the obliteration of Afghanistan and then whatever follows next... probably Iraq... then it might be thought that the choice to hold back in our views might be less than wise...
And it pays always to be sceptical about everything that G W Bush is involved with.
I think you should stop thinking about the big picture for a bit. Focus and think, or pray if you want about the personal picture for all the individuals/ people/ human beings/ mothers/ brothers/daughters/ firemen/ teachers/ journalists/ homeless grandads etc. etc.
The truth or otherwise of what you are saying is irrelevant at this moment in time, neither is it useful
-the point is to wait, to think, to tell the story of the tragedy,
- not to speculate on whose FAULT it is!
- not to know!
Neither I, nor you, nor anyone KNOWS.
All this speculation does is to give a licence to boast and spread all sorts of prejudice and hatred
People round me at work are jumping to the conclusions that it is Islamic Fundamentalists.
It may be?
But WE DO NOT KNOW. It gets up my nose, its a terrible prejudice no different from the hatred held towards Jewish people in the holocaust.
But to assume anyone could do this betrays a terrible prejudice. Alleging that the American military is so perverse as to do this, to incite a war against the Middle East is all part of the same sickness.
There is an assumption of a lack of humanity in so many people by so many people. For God’s sake why not remember the humanity in all the people affected and be patient about who to blame.
You are right and you are wrong.
“People round me at work are jumping to the conclusions that it is Islamic Fundamentalists. It may be? But WE DO NOT KNOW. It gets up my nose, its a terrible prejudice no different from the hatred held towards Jewish people in the holocaust. But to assume anyone could do this betrays a terrible prejudice. Alleging that the American military is so perverse as to do this, to incite a war against the Middle East is all part of the same sickness.”
You hit the nail on the head T
But unfortunately, even if dark intentions did not engineer or somehow enable today’s disastrous events, that doesn’t mean the Bush Administration will not now try to exploit the opportunity to all its political advantage.
And unless there is immediate and strong public pressure, today’s events are bound to soon become the "justification" for the killing of more innocent people.
As surely as night follows day.
And given that there has been a steady buildup of military hardware in the Middle East – and “softening up operations” have been underway against Iraq’s air defences for several months - I would be picking a “degradation” operation will be launched in a matter of hours.
That is unless a very good reason emerges for the USA not to do so.
That is why we need to all start thinking about this very,very deeply....
And why we also need to do as you say, pray.
And it is also why we have to comment on this now. And not tomorrow. We have to start asking the questions now. If we wait till the decision is made and more bombs have started to rain down, then it will be too late – and crimes will have again been committed in our name.
Please trust that I will attempt to deal with this in an appropriate way.
Can I, in fact, use your argument above (not just the bit but the whole posting) ... and earlier correspondence this morning...
kinda agree with T on this, maybe its just the air here in the US. But i find your comments a bit distasteful
sure Bush is a dangerous and scary man but I really think it is a bit offensive or ridiculous to suggest he would do or even allow to happen anything like this or at this scale for his own ends.
that *anyone* would do this is unbelievable but with madness and extreme fundamentalist religion combined with extreme nationalism i could see it .. to suggest that it could be done or allowed in the sort of calculating way that you suggest seems to me to have such a lack of faith in the human species as to be quite disturbing and maybe like i say a bit offensive
we are all ok now though
While that makes perfect sense in part... is this scenario not precisely what happened in Pearl Harbour... it has been relatively well confirmed now that US Intelligence knew the attack on Pearl Harbour was coming, but did nothing to avoid Pearl Harbour…
Why would they do such a thing?
Perhaps it is was a cock up. But some say President Roosevelt wanted to increase the stomach of the US people to enter a war.
Perhaps they did not expect the operation to be so successful? Either in 1941, or this time.
It is undoubtedly a fact now that the US public are far more likely to support US military explorations in the Middle East. And with Israeli PM Ariel Sharon pointedly describing this as a turning point in the war against terrorism, I would say the major decisions here have already been made.
In the case of Pearl Harbour US Intelligence did not organise the attack. But they didn't prevent it either. Monstrous maybe, but it has a precedent.
i think another way to put what Tess was getting at is that in her opinion you could do to feel more with your heart about this and a bit less with the head..
at least for a while, till the reaction comes down
800 people dead in Pentagon apparently..
about to go out for a wee walk to look at the scarred skyline
a couple of snippets from the news (maybe you could stick this in)
there are reports of cell phone calls from people under the rubble..
the guy interviewed someone at the hospital where they have set up a contact center : "are people finding there relatives ?" "no."
saw some firefighters returning to station after their all day shift - they were *wrecked*
A Poem For M.
The harbour is blue
The single scull laps languidly along
The white sail shines against the dark green hills
The eight rushes past my narrow view, and
The homeward traffic begins to buzz
But not like the Big Apple
Thank God you're safe.