By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
Your “Now What?” cover package [September 21–27] was indicative of the collective self-absorption you so-called “progressives” have always displayed. Forget the 6,000-plus people who died; dismiss the unprecedented unity better than 90 percent of Americans are currently displaying as mindless jingoism or worse (I guess no one is as smart or as compassionate as you liberals) . . . it’s time to focus on the real issue here: How does this affect L.A. Weekly writers and their hipster friends? Will there be no place for the pithy putdown of middle-class values? Will Marc Cooper have to put his racial playing cards away for the duration? And our very own Harold Meyerson, beating the drums of war? Oh my! “Now what?” indeed. Is the left finally and completely irrelevant? I guess I do see a glimmer of hope in this after all.
There is nothing more disgusting in this world than for those in the print media to use events like the attack on America that left 7,000 dead or missing to spout more left-wing foolishness. I know that you are disappointed that world communism was a failure, but try not to let it show so much.
I’ve read all of your articles from your two issues since the attack. I want to commend your staff. I find myself shaking my head in disgust at images in the media promoting “democracy,” “freedom” and “unity” while at the same time promoting war at any cost, including that of innocent lives. Have we not learned anything from this terrible tragedy? What is it going to take for this government to understand that other people from other countries value the lives of their civilians as much as we Americans value our own lives? We need to learn. We need to check in with reality and the world. We need more media like yours.
What an amazing and powerful cover! Minimalism rocks! Excellent composition and content.
Re: “It’s the Oil.” Johnny Angel’s correct, oil dependence has brought us to Oil War 2. Our drive to drive has driven civilization to the edge of self-destruction. The alternative has been available for decades — rebuilding our cities toward energy efficiency. We’ve got the technology to do so, and still have the wealth, unless we give it all, futilely, to the military.
Having worked for the past 20 years in the international oil business on five continents, I was flabbergasted to find this writer claiming in the third paragraph that Saudi Arabia produces fully 50 percent of the oil produced globally in one year. Just to set the facts straight, the rate of global oil production in 2001 is estimated to be around 73 million barrels/day. Saudi production is estimated at 9.2 million barrels/day. Hence, Saudi Arabia accounts for roughly 12.5 percent of global oil production.
Mr. Angel’s article contained many other misunderstandings and gross distortions of facts. I found it quite humorous that he seems to think the Crusades occurred 1,300 years before 1900, around roughly 600 A.D. For your information, the first Crusade reached and besieged Jerusalem in 1099. That was about 800 years before 1900, by my calculations.
Consistent with Mr. Angel’s inability to get basic facts correct was the absurd assertion that the U.S. and Britain reflexively back Israel in her troubles with her neighbors because Israel lies very near to the Persian Gulf oil deposits. A little bit of critical thinking about this would reveal that Britain and the U.S. would have a much easier time dealing with the Persian Gulf states if we acquiesced to their stated desire (depending, of course, on whom you talk to and how candid they choose to be) to see the total destruction of the state of Israel, along with most or all of the non-Arabs living there.
Mr. Angel appears to be just as massively misinformed about Israel as he is about the global oil marketplace and medieval history. Where do you guys get these amateurs?
JOHNNY ANGEL REPLIES: Yes, I misstated my case — it’s the several nations of the Saudi peninsula, not just Saudi Arabia, that produce half the world’s oil. But the point remains: It isn’t our love of heat, camels or dried fruit that draws us to the region. It’s the oil.
Thank you for publishing Judith Lewis’ interview with Mr. Tamim Ansary [“Stranger Than Fiction”]. It is nice in this age of rapidly spreading information to be able to verify the origins and the background of forwarded e-mails. The interview you have posted has added depth to an already insightful essay. Thank you for â helping to balance the knee-jerk reaction to inflict violence on the Afghani people just for being in the same country with a band of evil outcasts.
I just read the interview with Tamim Ansary. As I read Mr. Ansary’s original essay, it struck me that the Taliban are akin to the Khmer Rouge of Cambodia, and Osama bin Laden is like Pol Pot. As I recall, Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge killed about 3 to 5 million of their fellow citizens and were able to avoid capture and justice for over 20 years. It is terrifying that someone of a similar ilk is again on the loose, but on a worldwide basis. It strikes me that we must stand up to this terror or we will all go the way of the Cambodians of the 1970s.