Sorry, forgot to post the things I’ve been collecting here over the past week:

  • Quoting Harith al-Houssona, the doctor who treated the POW Jessica Lynch, the Murdoch-owned Times — hardly an anti-Bush rag –reported last Wednesday that Saving Private Jessica was “a staged operation that terrified patients and victimised the doctors who had struggled to save her life.” I’m shocked, shocked.
  • Ian Buruma on the problem of liberal interventionlism. His analysis of the commonalities between various anti-liberal ideologies is also very interesting.
  • Billmon, a master of the blog genre, tells us how what Jerry Falwell, Ian Paisley, and King James I have in common helps “explain the violent course of the American history, the outcome of the 2000 presidential election, and the invasion of Iraq.” In terms of form alone, this is a very impressive post. One more substative issues, however, the post makes me very uneasy. I’m always quite suspicious of analyses that infer some sort of essencial “cultural character” to a group of people. In the context of North America, such analyses are often based on the mistake of overlooking the selective nature of emigration to the New World by particular groups from their countries of origin. The statistical data presented is also pretty misleading, but the core observation is valuable: a particular form of anti-statist and violently evangelist Christian ideology is evident in the radical fringes of both Northern Ireland and the United States, and they may well have common origins.