--Extremism, Manny Francisco
Surprise, surprise, surprise!
--Gomer Pyle, USMC
Life ... is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
--Macbeth (V, v)
Oh foolish people, and without understanding;
which have eyes, and see not;
which have ears, and hear not
RAW is on holiday now, but the news which rustles other feathers has entered our awareness. The responses we witness seem absurd.
 On beheadings by members of the Islamic State (IS):Expected, totally. Go rambling about in their desert, and you can expect to be on IS's YouTube snuff favorites list sometime soon ... plan on it.
This is asymmetrical warfare at its finest. Didn't we just learn this in our most excellent adventures in Afghanistan and Iraq? Isn't this what Israel is experiencing vis-a-vis Hamas? It matters not the names of the players: the U.S. is confronting people who do not share her values-- in their backyard.
The photographer who lost his head was exploiting the situation, and the locals knew it. Professional newsmen or photographers are always looking for the scoop; it is their business. The word is, they want to "document history," but we have already seen enough beheadings and do not need to see more. This is an ugly historicity of our making.
We are exploiting them, and they, us; where is the surprise? Is this placing of ourselves in their grid square -- and the expected resultant sacrificial lambs -- an effort to re-ramp up a United State's military presence abroad?
This is not the first time religious fanatics have shed blood in the name of their cause. Why are we shocked?
Why this need to be horrified, and to jump through the predictable hoops of memorializing those beheaded? While it is a brutal death, to be sure, it is not without sense to those doing the killing. It is merely a method of gaining free propaganda.
If we do not support this lifestyle and their adjudication process, why are we present, creating it, and then documenting it?
IS behavior is not going extinct anytime soon, unlike the language of Wukchumni, which will become so when the last known speaker, Marie Wilcox, dies. So: what precisely is the purpose for the United State's presence in Afghanistan, Iraq or any of the areas of IS control?
The press and we have a field day with every new outrage from the Muslim world, but to what end? For example, what of Boku Haram, the Muslim group that abducted the Nigerian school girls? Off the radar, in favor of the latest cause du jour. New and more grotesque stories are demanded by the commentariat, all to no end.
Lesson: Do not be a part of stirring the pot in Islamic jihadist nations.
 African disease Ebola cured by act of god:A doctor, one of two U.S. missionaries who contracted the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia and recently cured at Emory medical center, claimed God saved his life in a miraculous direct reply to thousands of prayers. In fact, the miracle was being born white and Christian. If you wish to call this fortunate confluence which afforded Dr. Brantly access to the latest super drug that cured him, then yes, Brantly is the recipient of a miracle.
But if you believe that, you also believe that the prayers of the African victims and their families are somehow inferior, as infected Africans do not usually recover from the virus. Such belief of a favored religion is medievalism at its finest, so to return to point #1 -- why the shock at the power of conviction?
Dr. Brantly further asks his fellow believers to pray for the Africans that their prayers might be heard ... by an obviously Christian-favoring God.
Lesson: Do not go mucking about in Liberia when Ebola is ravaging the nation, and do not claim God favors you over them.