Yemen, one of the world's poorest nations, has come under attack from Saudi Arabia – in turn backed by the United States and United Kingdom in this war effort

Yemen, one of the world’s poorest nations, has come under attack from Saudi Arabia – in turn backed by the United States and United Kingdom in this war effort

(Editor’s Note: Journalist Anthony C. LoBaido has traveled to Saudi Arabia and other nations in the region. During this time, he explored Arabic and Islamic culture and art, studied Shariah law, Sufism, as well as the Arabic language and calligraphy. Through WND, LoBaido published his series “Arabiana.” In Parts I and II, LoBaido investigates Saudi Arabia’s alleged links to terrorism, planned procurement of nuclear weapons from Pakistan, the Wahhabi branch of Islam, and Saudi Arabia’s treatment of Christians, amongst other issues. In Part III, LoBaido examines Saudi Arabia’s multidimensional interests in Yemen, the ongoing war gripping that beleaguered nation, as well as Saudi Arabia’s (and the UAE’s) grand design to connect Arabia and North Africa with a land bridge – the Bridge of Horns – spanning Yemen and Djibouti. In Part IV, LoBaido looks at Saudi Aramco, the richest company in the history of the world, rivaling even the British East India Company. In Part V, LoBaido re-examines the war in Yemen, and the most recent deconstruction of the missing 28 pages from the official 9/11 Commission Report.)

The war on Yemen, one of the world’s poorest nations, continues to shock the world with its brutality and cruelty to Yemeni children. Saudi Arabia sees the Houthis to the south, Shiites in Bahrain, ISIS in Syria and chaos in Iraq. Beyond them is Iran. Less known is that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf nations see Yemen as a launching point to build a land bridge to Djibouti and North Africa. The rich oilfields of Ethiopia are beckoning. This is all explained in detail here. Like the Afrikaner farmers who fought in the Second Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902) while presiding over Cecil Rhodes’ gold and diamond fields, the Houthis are “simply in the way.”

Why did this war happen in the first place? Simply put, Saudi Arabia has been buying off and interfering with Yemen’s leadership and tribal structure since the late 1970s. The Houthis decided they didn’t want a “president for life.” How would Americans feel if, in 2016, Jimmy Carter were still president and South Korea, Afghanistan, Nicaragua, Rhodesia and other nations – imperiled by Carter’s incompetence between 1976 and 1980 – were merely a foretaste of decades of malaise and failure? Saudi Arabia (and other nations) supported Yemen’s “president for life.” The Houthis, like the American colonials in 1776, aren’t buying into the old paradigm.

Yemen’s exiled government has welcomed the U.S. plan to restart peace talks. You can read that article here. This Reuter’s article says the Houthis are ready for peace talks if attacks cease against them. This article claims Saudi Arabia is training 5,000 “terrorists” to fight in Yemen.

We can only wonder if there is an underlying order to everything or if, on the other hand, everything is falling apart. The architect of our postmodern New World Order points to five major global changes constraining American hegemony. They are listed here. Will Yemen be another failure, as is the case of the wars on Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Serbia and elsewhere? Will the “pipeline wars” in Syria and the Ukraine ever come to a peaceful resolution? Will natural gas from Oman reach Turkey and Europe through Syria? And will Russian pipelines to Europe flow through the Ukraine, bringing energy security to that part of the world?

In this scene from "Charlie Wilson's War," viewers learn how the Soviet Red Army is using cluster bomb archetype weapons in Afghanistan that maim Afghanistan's children. Today, cluster bombs made in the United States are doing the same exact thing to Yemen's innocent children.

In this scene from “Charlie Wilson’s War,” viewers learn how the Soviet Red Army is using cluster bomb archetype weapons in Afghanistan that maim Afghanistan’s children. Today, cluster bombs made in the United States are doing the same exact thing to Yemen’s innocent children.

It should be noted that Yemen is amongst the world’s poorest nations, rivaling Haiti and Afghanistan – and that was before the most recent war waged by Saudi Arabia. Slowly but steadily, like the proverbial dripping faucet, news of the carnage in Yemen is spreading around the world. The stealth-like role of the U.K. in Yemen has been widely reported by London’s Guardian. Yemen was once a British protectorate. The story of North Yemen and South Yemen is complicated. The BBC published a timeline of Yemen’s history that can be reviewed here. It could be argued that the media in the U.K. are “more free” than the controlled, corporate “presstitute” establishment media in the United States.

British Foreign Minister Tobias Ellwood has been outspoken in his criticism of Saudi Arabia’s war on Yemen. Amnesty International has also condemned the U.K.’s role in the Yemen War.

However, the Washington Post published, “A cluster bomb made in America shattered lives in Yemen’s capital.” This article is seminal upon deeper contemplation and shows a real paradigm shift in America’s position in the world since the first term of former President Ronald Reagan.

Back then, the Soviet Union was considered to be the focus “of evil in the modern world,” an atheistic state exporting revolutions drenched in blood to the four corners of the Earth.

Paradigm shift and criticism

Consider the film “Charlie Wilson’s War,” starring Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts. In this film, based on a true story no less, we learn that the U.S. Congress’ willingness to fund the Mujahedeen in Afghanistan crystallized when the former Soviet Union deployed archetype “cluster bombs” in Afghanistan. These tiny bombs looked like shiny toys. Children would pick them up and become maimed. Thus, a large tribal family would have to take extra care of that child. And family members were less like to fight in the war against the Soviet Red Army. This was all a part of the atheistic Soviet tactics, strategy and operations. As Winston Churchill said in the earliest stages of World War II, “Defeat is one thing. Disgrace is another.”

Now also consider the U.S. Congress recently voted down a bill to stop the selling of cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia for use on poor Yemen. You can read all about it right here from ABC News. This article is dated June 17, 2016. There was a brief moment when the White House and Congress thought about halting the sale of cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia. What exactly transpired in the pro-con debate is something Brian Williams should have been reporting on the “NBC Nightly News.” The U.K. Guardian has a trove of cluster bomb stories here.

Instead, the controlled establishment media and military industrial complex have walked away from brokering peace between Saudi Arabia and her peninsula sibling, Yemen. Depleted uranium will usher in an era of genetic deterioration and birth defects for the Arab and Islamic peoples of the Middle East and North Africa. (One particularly brutal article on this scenario can be read here.) This will put the brakes on “the Muslim population bomb” which is feared by Anglophile elites much in the same way the “Yellow Peril” became an issue in the late 1800s.

Not surprisingly, the Washington Post ran another story on how signs of hatred against America are found all over the show in Yemen’s capital. This is not a case of “They hate us for our freedoms.” No one in Yemen “hates” the freedoms enabling Lindsay Lohan’s coked-out DWI arrest in the Hamptons, or the setting up of meth labs in every small town in the U.S.

U.S. Air Force Col. Ted Lieu, a U.S. Democrat congressman representing Los Angeles County, is trying to stop the American role in Saudi Arabia’s War on Yemen. You can read all about his efforts right here.

Says Lieu, “I taught the law of war when I was on active duty. You can’t kill children, newlyweds, doctors and patients – those are exempt targets under the law of war, and the coalition has been repeatedly striking civilians. So it is very disturbing to me. It is even worse that the U.S. is aiding this coalition.”

When white Evangelical Christians join the military, put on the uniform and wave the flag, they might want to ask themselves, “Who would Jesus kill?” Hunting down real terrorists is one thing. Taking out the Houthis because they’re in the way of some grand regional scheme, or because they are Shiites instead of Sunnis, or because they don’t want a “president for life” does not represent “truth, justice and the American way.”

Reuters ran an article about a group protesting what it calls “illicit” arms said to Saudi Arabia, since those weapons are being used on innocent civilians.

Medea Benjamin wrote, “U.S. weapons sales are drenched in Yemeni blood.” Says Benjamin, also the author of “Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connection”:

“During his almost eight years in office, President Obama has approved a jaw-dropping, record-breaking $110 billion in weapons sales to the repressive Saudi regime, all with Congressional backing … Manufacturers such as Boeing, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, and McDonnell Douglas have been pushing these sales to offset military spending cuts in the United States and Europe. These weapons manufacturers spend millions on lobbying, filling the campaign coffers of both Republicans and Democrats. In addition to that lobbying power, US officials were pressured to placate Saudi Arabia after the Obama administration made a deal with its adversary, Iran. That appeasement came in the form of a level and quality of arms exports that should’ve never been approved for a repressive regime with an atrocious human rights record.

Benjamin continued:

“Saudi Arabia is the number one exporter of radical Islamic extremism on the planet. Fifteen of the 19 Sept. 11 hijackers were radicalized Saudi citizens. The regime oppresses religious minorities, women, LGBT people, and dissidents, while dozens of nonviolent participants in their own Arab Spring protests face execution, usually by beheading. The Pentagon says that providing the Saudis with F-15s bombers, Apache helicopters, armored vehicles, missiles, and bombs supports Saudi Arabian defense missions and helps promote stability in the region. But since March 2015, the Saudis have being using these weapons offensively to intervene in neighboring Yemen. Their relentless onslaught has killed thousands of innocent civilians, decimated Yemen’s infrastructure, and left more than 21 million people – that’s 4 out of 5 Yemenis – desperately in need of humanitarian assistance. The United Nations has said that Saudi air strikes on civilian targets likely constitute war crimes and calls the situation in Yemen a ‘catastrophe.'”

This interesting article says hundreds of thousands gathered in Yemen in support of that nation’s rebels. Did you hear about that? William F. Jasper is probably one of the most talented journalists in the world. Unless a journalist like Jasper takes on the Yemen issue, you probably won’t get a digestible, true-to-the core account. Trevor Timm of the U.K. Guardian leaves no daylight as he explains how “The U.S. is promoting war crimes in Yemen.” This article says U.S. personnel who may or may not have been involved in Saudi Arabia’s war planning on Yemen have been redeployed. Jim Lobe asks why the U.S. is backing Saudi Arabia in Yemen.

Aniqa Raihan’s article, “Jack Reed: Cluster bomb cheerleader,” is another must-read as it takes on both Mr. Reed and cluster bomb producer Textron Systems. “Yemen as a laboratory for war” should not be missed. Anthony C. LoBaido stands up for Yemen here.

‘Meet Me in St. Louis’

“This is our war and it is shameful” is another excellent piece. Lauding the work of Andrew Cockburn in Harper’s magazine, we read:

“Just a few short years ago, Yemen was judged to be among the poorest countries in the world, ranking 154th out of the 187 nations on the U.N.’s Human Development Index. One in every five Yemenis went hungry. Almost one in three was unemployed. Every year, 40,000 children died before their fifth birthday, and experts predicted the country would soon run out of water. Such was the dire condition of the country before Saudi Arabia unleashed a bombing campaign in March 2015, which has destroyed warehouses, factories, power plants, ports, hospitals, water tanks, gas stations, and bridges, along with miscellaneous targets ranging from donkey carts to wedding parties to archaeological monuments. Thousands of civilians – no one knows how many – have been killed or wounded. Along with the bombing, the Saudis have enforced a blockade, cutting off supplies of food, fuel, and medicine. A year and a half into the war, the health system has largely broken down, and much of the country is on the brink of starvation.

The most telling part of the article states:

“… It’s clear we don’t care about Yemen … we don’t care if we destroy it. What we do care about is the health and well-being of the U.S. arms industry. In 2010 or the end of – the U.S. announced … the largest arms sale in U.S. history, which was a $60 billion sale of warplanes, of F-15 jets, plus bombs and missiles and missile guidance, bomb guidance systems and all the rest. That was – if you look in the Hillary Clinton’s released emails, you will find a sort of round of celebration: good news, a Christmas present. This was all part of the strategy, which the Obama administration has been pursuing since the beginning, of increasing arms sales abroad. … It’s also the whole infrastructure that keeps them going … [W]hat keeps them in the air are the teams of American contract workers who are on the ground. If you look on job search sites, you’ll find job opportunities in Saudi Arabia to service F-15, maintain F-15 planes … [W]e have 7,000 people on the production line at the Boeing plant in St. Louis working on this huge Saudi F-15 order. And I’ve seen a figure that, across the country, in terms of subcontractors doing the bits that go in to make these planes, perhaps as many as another 30,000 or 35,000 workers around the country. This is a huge number of jobs and a huge amount of money.”

St. Louis' Gateway Arch was the launching point for Lewis & Clark's "Voyage of Discovery" after the Louisiana Purchase. Today, St. Louis is home to F-15 manufacturing helping Saudi Arabia to bomb poor Yemen. (Photo by Anthony C. LoBaido)

St. Louis’ Gateway Arch was the launching point for Lewis & Clark’s “Voyage of Discovery” after the Louisiana Purchase. Today, St. Louis is home to F-15 manufacturing helping Saudi Arabia to bomb poor Yemen. (Photo by Anthony C. LoBaido)

Conspiracies, missing 28 pages and more

Saudi Arabia has lobbyists, friends in Congress, law firms and perhaps even bought-off elites at the United Nations to run interference. Saudi Arabia has also reached out to Israel for support. This is sure to raise eyebrows. Paul Craig Roberts of Wall Street Journal and U.S. Treasury fame puts in his two cents here. Former WND gumba and all-around great guy Paul Sperry published an article in the New York Post with the headline, “The claim that the Saudis are innocent of 9/11 is total bull.” Jason Ditz piles on here. Thomas Knapp offers the Cliff Notes version here.  The Intercept offers another look here. Addicted to Paul Sperry? Then take another gander right here.

Concerning the shadowy “missing 28 pages” and alleged links to Saudi Arabia, President Obama released “File 17” as a prequel to the missing pages from the official 9/11 report. The anticipated release of the missing 28 pages caught the imagination of the establishment media, the independent media and the general public. Here’s an FAQ about these controversial pages.

The "missing 28 pages" from the official 9/11 report have finally been released – albeit replete with a bevy of redactions. Will America and the world ever know the true, full story?

The “missing 28 pages” from the official 9/11 report have finally been released – albeit replete with a bevy of redactions. Will America and the world ever know the true, full story?

If this whole missing 28 pages is giving you a headache or even a migraine, have no fear. Larisa Horton is the Michael Jordan of dealing with the whole oxygen-stealing-parasites-only-liars-tolerate-other-liars paradigm. Her article on the missing 28 pages should be deconstructed line by line and committed to memory. Horton’s definitive work on the archetype of “The ’28 pages’ explained” can be found here. Kids in Brazil play soccer. Children in Afghanistan become soldiers who send empires into the dustbin of history – Alexander the Pretty Good, British Empire, Red Army and even the Project for a New American Century. If Larisa Horton were soccer, she’d be Brazil. If Larisa Horton were an empire killer, she’d be Afghanistan. Just as “The Cigarette Smoking Man” on “The X-Files” feared the relentlessness of Agent Fox Mulder, the translational elites with at least a little to hide and so much more to lose must quiver at the pen wielded by Larisa Alexandrovna Horton. “The ’28 pages’ explained” is worthy of a Pulitzer Prize.

But if you doubt the power of Saudi Aramco, the preponderance of the Saudi-led petrodollar, the power of Saudi Arabia’s friends all over the world, especially in Washington, D.C., and New York, then you’d be making a mistake far greater than invading Afghanistan and/or Iraq. When Tommy Lee Jones is told, “You have no idea how smart” the star of “The Fugitive” is, multiply that by a million, and you wouldn’t even begin to touch upon one percent of their brain power, strategy and influence.

Saudi Arabia has gotten a bloody nose in Yemen, as this article states. Others say Saudi Arabia’s war on Yemen has only made the “terrorists” who hate America even richer. The New York Times published an article about fighting ISIS with math formulas. (Yes, not only is this an actual theory, it’s an actual article in the New York Times.)  Reuters published an article about a United Nations visit to Yemen. This visit did not go well as the blood and carnage is horrific.

The biggest story of all remains the assertion that Saudi Arabia paid off United Nations-based elites to block any anti-Yemen backlash at the global body. South Korean U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon spills the beans to ABC News about blackmail and blacklists here. The New York Times ran an editorial about the pressure put on Mr. Moon to remove Saudi Arabia from a list of armies that maim and kill children. Read that story here.

The New York Times ran another story, explaining that cluster bombs were outlawed by international treaty in 2008, but Russia and the U.S. did not sign that treaty. As such, those bombs are showing up in Syria and Yemen. The New York Times has its own cluster bomb archive of related articles that can be seen here. The Cluster Munitions Coalition website offers a way for concerned Americans and others to rally around the cause of eliminating cluster bombs. Can we find a way to use the political process to fix titanic problems?

The soft underbelly

The support given to Saudi Arabia by both the United States and Great Britain in Yemen calls to mind some of the darkest chapters in Anglophile history. One could cite the Trail of Tears of the Cherokee, famines in India caused by Lord Clive and later during World War II. The British Empire often has picked on very small opponents. Consider the second Anglo-Boer War of 1899 – 1902. More than 26,000 Afrikaner women and children were rounded up and put into detention camps, where they died of disease, cold and hunger while dressed in rags. In the annals of history, the British Empire certainly can rival the ancient Roman Empire for brutal errors.

Indeed, the British Empire made its share of mistakes. It turns out that the American colonial mercenaries from France, led by Lafayette, were better than the Hessian mercenaries utilized by the British crown. (“The Headless Horseman,” a cautionary tale about a 1776-era Hessian mercenary, lives on through Washington Irving’s immoral classic, and even a more recent film starring Johnny Depp.) Another mistake was the “soft underbelly strategy of World War II.”

LoBaido-Yemen-4

Just as southern Europe was "the soft underbelly" of Nazi-occupied Europe, so too can Yemen be looked upon as the underbelly of Saudi Arabia

Just as southern Europe was “the soft underbelly” of Nazi-occupied Europe, so too can Yemen be looked upon as the underbelly of Saudi Arabia

During World War II, FDR threw in with Churchill to attack Nazi Germany through the “soft underbelly of southern Europe.” During the midterm elections, FDR learned that 20 percent of the American people were for making a peace treaty with Hitler and concentrating the war effort on getting back at the Japanese in the Pacific because of Pearl Harbor. As such, U.S. troops, after an up and down campaign in North Africa (securing the Suez Canal and Egypt as the U.K.’s lifeline to its empire in India and Australia/New Zealand) joined British and other allied troops in an attack on Sicily. And later on came a landing at Anzio.

Churchill, who was a journalist during the Boer War, was the architect of the disastrous World War I strategy at Gallipoli in Turkey. (He wanted to knock the Ottoman Turks out of that war as allies of Germany.) The American military leadership was not thrilled with the soft underbelly strategy. But Churchill was really hiding the weakness of the British ground forces that were not ready to invade France. One can only wonder how badly Churchill felt when the offensive at Anzio became bogged down. He was stricken with pneumonia and had two minor heart attacks. Emboldened, heady American troops made a bold push all the way into Rome. In time, the dictator Mussolini was hung upside-down at a gas station in Milan.

Similarly, there are those who might say Yemen is “the soft underbelly” by which Iran and Shiites can attack Saudi Arabia. This notion is not discounted in Western foreign-policy circles or among ordinary everyday Saudi Arabians.

The main point is that looking at the “soft underbelly” of Saudi Arabia (or Nazi Germany) is a strategy wrought with peril. Letting the Sunnis of Saudi Arabia fight it out with the Shiites of Bahrain and Iran and Yemen might seem like a good strategy in White Hall, at the United Nations or in New York, at the CIA, at the Pentagon and even in Riyadh. But just as Churchill’s British Empire was sidelined by the emerging empires of the Soviet Union and the United States, so too are “new empires of thought, communication, leadership, trade and commerce” emerging around the world.

The BRICS nations are but one example. China is trying to establish its own version of the World Bank and IMF. There’s talk of a New Silk Road from Beijing to Berlin. Around the world, people are enraged and disgusted by American and British perversion, cultural debasement, HBO, Showtime, MTV, illegal drug use, obesity, the decay of normalized traditional values, abortion, sexual deviants, establishment media lies, deranged politicians who live and act like sociopaths and many other ills.

Just at the British Empire, even after burning the White House to the ground during the War of 1812, learned how perilous it might be to fight a home-grown militia in the swamps of South Carolina, Louisiana or perish the thought, in the Everglades of Florida filled with alligators and Seminole Indians, so too should the U.S., U.K. and Saudi Arabia rethink their war against the tribal Houthis. Burning and bombing the capital of a foreign nation that should actually be a blood brother is vexing.

About a year before the British burned the White House to the ground, American forces invading Canada burned parts of Toronto (York). When the British got around to burning the White House and other official buildings in Washington, D.C., a terrible thunderstorm appeared out of nowhere (along with a tornado), and this put an end to the arson. Recalling St. Louis, that city, positioned as it was “in the West” and right on the Mississippi River, was set to be named the new capital of the United States. Yet the horrible series of New Madrid earthquakes in 1812 led to the eradication of that same idea. The quakes (just south of St. Louis) were so powerful that church bells rang in Boston and the Mississippi reversed its course.

Beyond all of that, when we see Houthis and Saudis at each other’s throats, we can’t help but recall both the burnings of York and the White House.

Saudi Aramco’s and Saudi Arabia’s oil wealth could be used for so many positive ends. Science, technology, refrigeration, irrigation, agriculture and healthy foods, medicine, clinics, education, the Internet, students studying abroad, linguistic research, positive TV and films, sports, training in diplomacy, job creation, carpentry and masonry, clean energy, toys for children, preserving Yemen’s cultural heritage and many other uses.

Cognitive dissonance

Cognitive-dissonance

Why should even one more British pound or Saudi petrodollar be spent on maiming Yemeni children with cluster bombs? Shouldn’t our talents and energies and abilities be used in a quest for honor, kindness, love and courage in the service of the brotherhood of mankind? If Islam is really the “religion of peace,” as we are told, and we often ask ourselves, “Who would Jesus kill?” then it’s high time for cognitive dissonance. A political science professor at Arizona State, Dr. Stephen Walker, said cognitive dissonance was, “A reduction in the discrepancies between one’s own belief systems and incoming information.” The war on Yemen is forcing many to come to terms with cognitive dissonance.

Andrew Bacevich appears to be a nice man and a strong academic. He served in Vietnam and in the Persian Gulf. This article on “Christian realism” in foreign policy quotes Mr. Bacevich as saying, “We should … encourage Muslims – particularly those who live in the region, it’s not Muslims who live in the United States – to find a way to reconcile faith with modernity so that they don’t feel threatened by all that we in the West have come to represent, help them get to the point where they believe they can be good Muslims even as they live alongside a world that is frankly moving away from religiosity.” Is what the world is moving toward blessed or cursed?

Will Islamic believers really accept they have nothing to fear from meth labs, Paris Hilton, Dennis Rodman, MTV, HBO, prescription medicines, alcohol abuse and your typical Friday night around the campus of Arizona State University? Do they want their daughters drunk on Easter, dressing like tramps, seeking abortions, catching venereal diseases, bringing drugs into their parents’ houses and a thousand other things we could list here? Can Muslims safely walk the streets of Detroit, New York, Oakland and St. Louis at 3 a.m.? Can “good Muslims” or even “good Christians” be “in the world” but “not of the world?”

How much time has Andrew Bacevich spent with the typical American teenager in, let’s say, an elite suburb like Ladue in St. Louis? (The things I either saw or was told about while living in Ladue include, but are not limited to, use of ecstasy, sex on the school bus, oral sex in the hallways, running off to concerts in Illinois, stealing from their parents, fraud on their parents’ credit cards, driving drunk, up all night texting on their cell phones, trying LSD and much more.)  I’d like to take Andrew Bacevich to the full-moon party on Ko Pha Ngan Island off the coast of southern Thailand and show him what the youth of the West can really get up to.

To say that devout Muslims want to live alongside of this, or have nothing to fear from this kind of deranged “cultural norm” in the West seems flippant and unwise. This is not to take away from or criticize Mr. Bacevich’s great mind, achievements, devotion to his nation, academic work, writings and military prowess. He is a good man who has lived a great life. But does he really understand the West’s cultural collapse?

This is where Islam really gets its strength against the debased post-Christian foreign policy elites in the West – especially in New York, London and Washington, D.C. The fact remains that politics has failed, economics has failed, the New World Order has failed, trade has failed, our culture has failed, Marxism has failed, capitalism has failed, socialism has failed, the war on drugs has failed, the family has failed and public education has failed. The cherry on top is that China says America’s last round of quantitative easing constituted our national default.

Malachi Martin, the late and highly regarded author, theologian and confidant of popes, spoke frankly before his death about the end of Christian civilization and how it has left us naked against wild packs of lions within the state, in the culture and various non-state actors. Martin’s exact words can be heard here. Islam does not have this problem. Islam does not have a pope talking about Darwin and sodomy and calling the spread of Christianity a “jihad.” Islam does not have a Joel Osteen telling you that if you follow Jesus of Nazareth, a simple and poor carpenter who only healed the sick, cast out demons and imparted wisdom, that if you follow in His footsteps you will be materially blessed. In fact, Jesus clearly said that those who followed Him would be persecuted. So who has more in common with Jesus Christ – those enabling the bombing of Yemen or the beleaguered Houthis? Are we ever going to stop killing each other?

One random posting on the Internet stated: “Every day we can inform ourselves about what is happening in the world: massacres, terrorism, fraud, the innocent dying of hunger, drugs, abortions, earthquakes, volcanoes active to a greater extent than in the past, the sea behaving unusually, deformation of the Divine Word, opposition against God and His faithful, the establishment of statues of Satan, etc. And how does humanity react? Indifferently: evil is commonplace for man and what occurs, if it does not concern him directly, is not seen by him as such. The strategy? Cancel out human conscience so that it might be disposed to accept the dominion of evil and then disposed to follow the Antichrist.”

Are we living in a cruel world as explained by Tommy Lee Jones in “No Country for Old Men”? In that troubling Hollywood film, we’re told, “America is hard on people” and, moreover, that “We can’t stop what’s coming.” An amoral murderer named Anton roams rural America armed with a pressurized weapon used to kill steer. Are humans now mere cattle? Anton might decide to kill on the basis on a coin flip. In one of the film’s ultimate scenes, a young boy gives Anton the shirt off of his back. Is this a clue that in the future, our own children will serve some sinister person and/or agenda? What’s coming, exactly, that we ordinary law-abiding Americans cannot stop? Granted, it’s just a movie – but a terrifying movie, nevertheless. Is there any truth to any of this – or is it merely a boogeyman story, chilling fiction for bedtime?

This is no ordinary film. It won “Best Picture” and other honors at the Academy Awards. “No Country for Old Men” received its title from the poem by William Butler Yeats. It is a poem that speaks of a balance in the healthiest societies between the religious worldview, the practicality of everyday life and other facets such as architecture and aesthetics. The notion that rural Texas, filled with cowboys and sheriffs and ex-Vietnam-era soldiers all underpinned by the flag, mom, apple pie and the Bible is no longer healthy and normal. Drugs and drug money take center stage. Set in 1980, the film is visionary in that by 2016, illegal narcotics underpin our entire financial system. The United Nations says one out of every $10 in the world is related to drugs. Major banks have been fined for laundering drug money. We could add in the postmodern addiction to i-Phones, how people no longer really talk to one another, addiction to pornography, prescription drugs, open borders, $20 trillion in debt and $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities. In fact, one need only study and follow the real-time U.S. debt clock here.

When Anton carries out one if his coin flips to decide if he will kill an elderly gas station attendant, the elderly man speaks of needing to close the gas station before it gets dark. The scene takes place at high noon, however. As my late father, Anthony Sr., sometimes said, “The lights (in our society) are out, but nobody knows it is dark.” Andrew Bacevich’s notion that the world is “quite frankly moving away from religiosity,” finds a vital place at the very end of “No Country for Old Men.” For it is only then that the star of the film, Sheriff Ed Tom, laments that God has failed to enter into his life. Robots, AI, transhumanism (H+) and “super soldiers” heading for “The Singularity” might well eradicate the human soul while humanity sleepwalks.

The henna hand tattoos worn by Yemeni women are considered stylish and feminine (Yemen photo by Anthony C. LoBaido)

The henna hand tattoos worn by Yemeni women are considered stylish and feminine
(Yemen photo by Anthony C. LoBaido)

Yemen is one of the oldest nations on Earth. Its capital was founded by Shem, who survived the Great Flood on Noah’s Ark. At least those are the fables we’ve been told in and around the Middle East. This demonic war on Yemen embodies everything that is wrong with our troubled world. One can only wonder how the Supreme Being views three mighty powers like the U.S., the U.K. and Saudi Arabia piling on Yemen. Christians, Islamists, believers in Judaism, agnostics, secularists, atheists, arms traffickers and “Lords of War” are all encouraged to engage in their own personal cognitive dissonance and ask if Yemen has also been marked as “No Country for Old Men.”

About the author

Anthony C. LoBaido is a ghostwriter, journalist and photographer. He has published 368 articles from 53 nations around the world. He has also published a book on the Kurds. Some of his favorite adventures include attending the British army’s jungle warfare training in Belize, retracing Lawrence of Arabia’s World War I trek through Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, investigating the blood diamonds of Sierra Leone as popularized in the Leonardo DiCaprio film by the same name, meeting “CNN hero” Aki Ra at one of his land mine digs in extreme northern Cambodia, working with Time Magazine’s “Hero of Asia” Lek Chailert on her crusade to assist injured and abused elephants in Southeast Asia, rescuing HIV/Aids throw-away babies in the garbage dumps of Cape Town, South Africa, visiting a leper colony in Myanmar, as well as debriefing a woman who escaped from North Korea not once but twice.

LoBaido’s articles have been cited by Ivy League universities such as Princeton and the University of Pennsylvania. As a photographer, LoBaido made National Geographic in 2014. His photographs were auctioned at the 2015 St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital “Miracles by the Bay” Gala in San Francisco.

 

 

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