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It Is All Rooney’s Fault!!!

That is the narrative I get right now.  Rooney is useless and somehow it’s his fault England lost!  Just how, no one really can explain.  But hey, it makes a good headline, after all,  Rooney is the one player England has counted on since he broke through a decade ago in Portugal.  Plus it lets frustrated fans who may not be fond of the Manchester based scouser, vent and make themselves feel better.  As long as there is someone to blame.  Rooney is the English superstar, the White Pele who somehow never lived up to his potential.  So he presents a tasty target.  Even now, I have the tv on, and the most common question tonight is:  “Should England drop Rooney!”  And before the WC begun there were constant questions about Rooney.  Should he be a starter?  Should he play in the middle, up front, out wide?  Rooney, Rooney, Rooney….

 

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The Rumble In the Jungle!

 

England begun the day in great spirit.  Uruguay, the team everyone was afraid of in this Group D, lost to Costa Rica and Suarez was not fit enough to take part.  The one team no one cared about, the automatic 3 points to be divided by the 3 proper contenders to get out of the group; beat the highly favored Uruguayans 3-1.  And they deserved the win too.  Oops.  Now everyone has a problem.  The pundits spent months talking up Uruguay and how wonderful and tough they were supposed to be.  Some even speculated that Italy, England and Uruguay could all finish with 5 points each.  All were supposed to beat Costa Rica and possibly draw all the other matches.  Then goal difference would count, they would have to score as many as possible against the poor Costa Ricans.  Again, oops.  That is why we actually play the games.  No one wins on paper.   

So both teams were in high spirits.  The winner of the match in Manaus would be in great position.  Even a draw would be a decent result for both sides.  And Roy, the England manager known for his conservative tactics, set up a young, quick attack.  Sturridge up front.  The very young Sterling behind him at number 10, with Rooney as the left attacking midfielder, and Welbeck on the right to help out the hopeless Johnson.  Gerrard was supposed to be the anchor while Henderson was going to be the link up man, joining the attack whenever possible and defending as much as he could.  The defence was set sometime ago really.  Hart in goal, Baines and Johnson as fullbacks, with Cahill and Jagielka in front of Hart.  And more good news, the great Gianluigi Buffon was injured and would not start for Italy.  Now Sirigu is a very good keeper, but there is only one Buffon.

Italy usually play one of two systems.  A back three with wingbacks, or a flat back four with more midfielders.  Prandelli chose the second option against England.  Sirigu in goal.  Chiellini moved as a leftback.  Darmian on the right, with Barzagli and Paletta as CBs.  De Rossi would anchor and protect the back four, while Pirlo and Verratti would be the playmakers.  The versatile Marchisio and Candreva would support the striker, Mario Bolotelli from wide positions.  And it was Prandelli who got it right.  His 4-1-4-1 beat out Hodgson’s 4-2-3-1.     

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England actually started fairly well, creating a couple of chances.  But after that Italy asserted themselves and begun to control the play for a while.  A very intelligent corner led to the first goal.  England had everyone in the box bar Sterling and Sturridge.  It looked practiced, Prandelli must have noticed something.  Candreva took the corner, passed it short to Verratti, Sterling moved to cover them while Sturridge was left to defend against two Italians.  No one else reacted to close down the very open Marchisio when Sturridge went toward Pirlo.  Verratti’s pass looked as if it was meant for Pirlo, but the latter intelligently left it and the ball went to Marchisio who had the space and time to set up his shot and hit it to his left corner.  The ball went through a sea of legs in the very crowded penalty area and Joe Hart had no chance even though the shot was made from outside the box and Marchisio went more for placement than power.  A lovely goal which showed the intelligence of the Italians.  1-0 to Italy.

It did not take long for England to even the score.  Within two minutes they were level after a brilliant counter attack.  The Italians weren’t even caught out.  They had good numbers to defend any counters.  But after a couple of misplaced passes by both teams, Sterling picked up the loose ball just inside his own half near the center circle.  He quickly turned and went up the pitch, not really pressed by the Italians.  As he crossed the middle of the pitch he sent a lovely pass to Rooney between two Italians.  Rooney already begun his run and the pass was placed right in front of him.  He took one neat touch and as he arrived in the penalty area on the left flank he sent a great cross past two helpless Italian defenders behind whom Sturridge was making a good run.  He hit it on a short hop right into the back of the net.  Two wonderful quick passes, and one touch each by Rooney and Sturridge opened up the Italian defense beautifully.  A perfect example of quick, technical and direct football which resulted in a goal.  Simply brilliant.  After a very clever bit of play by the Italians and a great counter attack by the Three Lions the score was 1-1, and there was still almost and hour of football left.  A great sign and a possible wonderful game off football.       

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Well… no.  Not really.  The rest of the half was fairly uneventful aside from a flurry of activity in front of England’s goal right before the whistle.  Mario almost chipped Hart from a tough angle but Jagielka headed it off the line saving what would have been a lovely goal.  Right after that the Italians hit the post while England was still trying to collect themselves.  Halftime came and England looked a bit jaded.  Much of the time they forced into wild off balance shots from outside the box.  The Italians defended very well for the most part despite not really pressing the English players.  They sat back and dared England to break them down, especially after they went up front.

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How they did go up 2-1 could be used as an example of what NOT to do while defending.  After halftime Hodgson switched Rooney and Welbeck to the others’ flanks.  In the 50th minute the Italians patiently begun their attack from the back.  England had six men in their opponents half.  They looked like they were keeping shape, but that meant nothing as it was very high up and they weren’t really pressing.  Barzagli’s pass to Darmian to the right flank bypassed Welbeck who decided that this time he wasn’t going to rush back to help out Baines who quickly found himself against two Italians as Darmian carried the ball forward into England’s half.  Baines directed someone, anyone, to cover Candreva’s run as the Italian went behind him.  Unfortunately for England Gerrard was almost as lazy as Welbeck, and Jagielka was too slow to react.  He wasn’t sure if he could leave his area without cover.  By this time it was too late so he retreated into his penalty area while Baines desperately tried to get to Candreva who received Darmian’s pass.  Jagielka became stranded at the near side of the penalty area as Darmian continued his run and kept him there.  Gerrard lazily trotted back to the same area as Jagielka and Darmian, leaving Jagielka’s regular position in front of goal wide open.  Henderson was even further up the pitch than Gerrard and in no position to help.  Cahill at this time is near the far post loosely marking Bolotelli.  Meanwhile Marchisio makes a run from his left wide position into the box to the near post, he drags Johnson with him, and he too has no help from either Rooney, Sterling or Henderson.  Although then Johnson could have left Marchisio to the unoccupied Gerrard.  

Candreva meanwhile stops and fools the onrushing Baines who is desperately trying to get back into position.  He switches the ball to his left and crosses into the box.  At this time there is still 4 English defenders against 3 Italians in the box.  Jagielka just yards away with Darmian.  Gerrard is almost standing close to them.  Marchisio continues his run across the box dragging Johnson behind him with Cahill ball watching near the far post while Mad Mario peels off him to head the ball into the net.  Henderson is just slowly arriving while Welbeck is still far from the area.  The only one not really at fault was Hart.  Although even his reaction and footwork are slow while he scrambles to cover the other corner in a desperate hope that Bolotelli’s header will hit him somehow.  

It was a clever goal by Italy, but a fucking shambles by England.  Welbeck, Gerrard and Henderson switched off.  Baines a bit panicky while Jagielka confused.  Johnson tried to defend but Cahill was ball watching.  A joke really.  I am not big England fan but I was frustrated at the amateurism they showed during that sequence. 

Hodgson made a couple of changes in the second half but it took him a while.  Barkley came on for Welbeck after an hour, but by this time Prandelli already introduced Motta for Verratti.  Then both made non tactical moves in the 73rd minute.  Bolotelli came off replaced by immobile, while Wilshire came on for the uninspired Henderson.  With 10 minutes to go Lallana replaced a possibly injured Sturridge while Prandeli removed Candreva and put on Parolo. The changes, whether tactical, or just like for like substitutions, did not do much.  Italy adapted to England’s new tactics and calmly covered the new variables.  In the end it petered out into nothing for England.  Italy sat back composed and patient, while England were reduced to taking shots from outside the box.  So predictable.

 

It’s Still Rooney’s Fault Somehow!

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Rooney was roundly criticized for his performance.  Even Hodgson felt compelled to come to his defense after the match.  It was of course the same man who put him out wide instead of Sterling.  Instead of maybe playing 3 in the middle and giving both Sterling and Rooney free roles behind Sturridge.  I don’t know if Roy was trying to be clever and attempted to surprise Prandelli with his set up.  But it failed.  Italians managed a record breaking 92% pass percentage.  Whether they sat back or tried to defend up high the English didn’t manage to press the Italians into making mistakes.  Prandelli started Bolotelli despite some questions before the WC, and Immobile’s great goal scoring form in the lead up.  And that worked.  Mario kept the English defenders busy and managed to score the winning goal.  The two who were supposed to be the motors in the center for England were non-entities really.  De Rossi, Pirlo and Verratti managed to pass the ball around them.  Part of it was the fact that they were mostly outnumbered in the middle as Sterling is not the man to count on to get back and help them out.  So it’s not all Gerrard and Henderson having poor games.  Hodgson was trying to be too clever for his own good.  Perhaps all the talk in the media got too him.  “He was too conservative, too defensive, there was no creativity.”  So he started three forwards, two out of position, and an attacker who is still a kid.  And Henderson is not some wily veteran either, just 23 and not experienced at this level.  He only got a few minutes of playing time during the Euros 2 years ago.  Of course, despite the tactics and formation, these players could have performed much better.  All those crosses into the box and only one connected, the brilliant Rooney pass which Sturridge turned into a goal.  Even Hodgson singled out Johnson for not managing to properly cross the ball.

Yet despite all this it’s still Rooney’s fault.  Rooney did not have a good game.  That one moment of genius and… that’s it really.  I can’t remember anything else that was significant and quality.  Nothing that really troubled the Italians except maybe that shot he scuffed wide.  So criticism of Rooney’s performance is fair enough.  However what is not fair is singling him out when the eight out of the ten who are left did not cover themselves with glory.  I get that he makes a lot of money, but it’s money that United pay for his play at Old Trafford, not for England.  I get that the English are disappointed with him and his lack of scoring in World Cups.  Everyone mentions the 8 games he played, 9 now, and did not score in the WC.  But people forget that in 2006 he was injured and was rushed before he was ready out of desperation.  England were also poor and it’s not as if he failed to score on over 20 shots on goal like Lampard did.  In 2010 he was also rushed back too quickly after an injury.  This time by Fergie.  United were in a desperate fight for the league and to move on in the CL.  Rooney was on great form before he got hurt.  So he was rushed back and immediately had a set back.  He arrived in South Africa while still not match fit at best.  England were poor, but again, Rooney got most of the stick.  And after he dared to actually voice an opinion about the English support he became the whipping boy for both the media and the fans.  Four years later nothing has changed.  He is constantly criticized and people begun to question if he deserves to start for England during this WC.  

Of course now that England has found a second forward who can actually score Rooney is both blamed for set backs and not given credit for any success.  Gerrard is the captain and the undisputed leader of the team.  Yet it’s Rooney who gets most press.  Hart had a dodgy season in goal for both club and country, yet he is not questioned.  The newer faces all get a free pass.  The team as a whole is not expected to achieve greatness.  The manager is only now receiving some criticism.  And despite all that, it’s always Rooney.  I am a United fan, so I could be accused of major bias and blind defence of a player I support.  But my relationship with Rooney is somewhat complicated.  Especially after October 2010.  Even before then I was not his biggest fan.  And when we remember his hissy fits during Fergie’s last season, then my opinion of him is at best mixed.  But I do not like it when everyone gangs up one one guy, no matter how much he makes.  Especially when that person is singled out because of irrational reasons.  So by all means, critique his play, but seriously now, a sense of proportion and some logic would be nice.  

Published in: on June 15, 2014 at 6:13 am  Leave a Comment  

The Spy Who Saved The World- The Tragedy of Colonel Kuklinski

In a chapel at Arlington Cemetery a memorial took place few years ago.  It was attended by government officials, many current and former CIA agents, a military honour guard, along with a military band.  That in itself was not unusual.  Arlington has seen many such memorials, what was unusual was the ashes of a man honoured in such way.   They were draped not in an American flag, but a Polish white and red banner with a crowned white eagle in its centre.  The officer’s cap on top of the flag was that of a Colonel of the Polish Army.  But they were there because he was a true American hero.  And that fact can not be disputed.  He received the highest CIA award, one of only 8 recipients, the first foreigner.  Many say that he helped save us from WWIII, the information he passed on helped the US win the Cold War, in fact, he saved the world from nuclear annihilation.

His name was Ryszard (Richard) Kuklinski.  He was a Colonel in the Polish People’s Army.  He was the head of the Office of Strategic Planning in the Polish General Staff.  He was a great Polish patriot.  And he was a CIA spy.  Zbigniew Brzezinski, the former national Security Adviser to President Carter called him “the first Polish officer in NATO.”  To many Poles, me included, he is a national hero.  Tomany others, sadly, he is a traitor.  It is a paradox and the Colonel’s tragedy that he is an undisputed hero to all Americans while many of his own countrymen see him as a traitor.

The Real Spy Who Came In From The Cold

The Letter That Started It All

Its a story that could well have come from a fictional spy thriller.  In 1972 the American Embassy in Bonn received a strange letter written in bad English.  Its author claimed he was an officer in an Army of a Communist “Kantry” (sic! country), and he was seeking a meeting with an officer (Lt. Col. or Col.) of the US Army (not the CIA).  The letter gave dates and times of meetings in a couple of different Western cities.  Colonel Kuklinski was actually on a official spy mission.  He was not a spy himself, but he proposed and sailing trip through Western ports during which he and his companions (most of whom were other officers) would gather information on those facilities.  He signed the letter “PV,” he later explained it stood for Polish Viking.

He was met by a CIA agent, who did not identify himself as such.  During the meeting he explained that he wanted to provide the US Army with information about Warsaw Pact plans and capabilities.  At no time during the meeting did he ask for money or any other reward.  Further meetings were planned, a system of drops was developed, and Ryszard Kuklinski became an American agent.  Soon, the CIA was deluged with detailed information about the Polish and Warsaw Pact armed forces.  According to one veteran CIA analyst, Kuklinski did not fill in the picture, he gave American THE picture.  In all he passed on over 40,000 documents in his 9 years as a spy.  In November of 1981 he and his family, wife and two sons, were smuggled out of Poland after the Polish counterintelligence received information of a spy working in high in the Polish General Staff.  He personally was not suspected.

For 9 years Kuklinski was a tragically lonely man.  No one, not even his wife, knew he was passing on information to the Americans.  I did not say working for the Americans on purpose.  Because he never really did.  He never signed an agreement, unlike most spies.  He did not take any money for his work.  His motivation was not to help America, but to help Poland with America’s assistance.  He was not approached.  It was Kuklinski himself who came to the Americans.  He asked for nothing but equipment (some was specifically invented for him, like the precursor to the Blackberry, a mobile text sending device).  When he was smuggled out of Poland he had to leave almost everything behind.  Yet he took with him a drawing of a ship titled Tempest, he gave the drawing to his handler as a sign of gratitude and friendship.  That was Colonel Ryszard Kuklinski.

A Spy is Born

Ryszard Kuklinski was born in 1930 in Warsaw.  He came from a patriotic working class family of socialist traditions.  When Ryszard was ten his father, a member of the Polish resistance in German occupied Poland, was arrested by the Gestapo.  He later died in a concentration camp.  Ryszard barely a teenager joined the Warsaw Uprising.  After the Nazis were thrown out he went back to school and joined the army.  He quickly rose through the ranks and became a trusted officer in the Polish General Staff.  The opinions of Kuklinski by his colleagues, superiors and Soviet general was very positive.  He was part of the Polish UN Mission to Vietnam during the war there.  He was one of the main planners of the Polish part in the 1968 Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia.  In December of 1970 he, along with the rest of the country, witnessed the Pomorze crackdown during which 40 workers were killed and several hundred wounded by the Polish Army.  The last two events, he said, motivated him to do what he did.  In the words of his best friend, upon learning of the Army’s actions in the December 70 crackdown, he burst into his apartment, lit a cigarette, and said ‘I can’t believe those motherfuckers did that!”  he was visibly upset and disappointed in the role of the Army which he loved.  He lost the last hopes that the Polish Army was not just a tool of the Soviets.  The work he did in the General Staff further convinced him that the Soviets intended to use Poland as nothing but a tool in the possible WWIII during which the country he loved would be annihilated.  He was a direct witness of the signing over of Polish military command to the Soviets in case of a war with the West.  The Polish generals would become simple messengers.

He now had the motive, what he needed was means.  He was a passionate, and a very knowledgeable sailor.  He build his first kayak.  He then owned a small sailboat.  But when he saw that the Polish Militia (police) had raised an old sunken small yacht, he exchanged that sailboat for it.  For three years he restored it to pristine condition.  That yacht later gave him the means.  As mentioned he proposed the sailing trip during which he contacted the Americans.  It became an annual trip till the Soviets requested that it stop a few years later, for fear that it might become an opportunity for the Western powers to recruit the sailors as agents.

Kuklinski hands documents to Soviet Marshall Kulikov

I wont try to tell the story of his life and work as a spy, that has been done extensively and far better than I could ever hope to attempt.  I will provide several links later where you can read about him if you wish.  The importance of his contribution is undisputed.  40,000 vital documents full of information about the Warsaw Pact, its plans, capabilities, and perhaps most importantly, the mood and intentions of the Warsaw Pact high command.  He regularly met with the highest ranking Polish, Soviet, and other Warsaw Pact commanders.  He gauged their mood and intentions as well as future plans.  All this he passed on to the Americans.  But that is not the main point of my story, despite its somewhat misleading title, I do not want to talk about his importance to the Cold War, and its conclusion, but about his legacy in Poland itself.

Konrad Wallenrod

(link above)

Though unlike Mickiewicz’s “Wallenrod” Kuklinski did not commit suicide, his story is not any less tragic.  For years he was in exile.  He was sentenced to death, in absentia, by the Polish Communists in 1984 for the high crimes of treason and desertion.  His rights as a citizen of Poland were revoked and his property ceased by the state.  Two years later the communists launched a propaganda campaign to discredit Colonel Kuklinski.  And the Polish Goebbels, Jerzy Urban (spokesman for the Commie govt in the 80’s), I am sorry to say, succeeded somewhat.  In the late 90’s, after he was finally exonerated, a poll was conducted in Poland.  34 % saw him as a traitor, 29 % as a hero, with the rest undecided.  And that is a very sad state of affairs.  What is sadder still is that quite a few of the members of the Polish anti-Communist movement Solidarity also see him as a traitor or at least have reservations about him.  Is it any wonder then that it took President Clinton, former National Security Adviser Brzezinski and the prospect of joining NATO to finally do right by Kuklinski in 1997?  For 8 years after communism fell he was still persona non grata in Poland.  The only thing done was to change his sentence in 1990 from death to 25 years in prison.  Lech Walesa, the leader of Solidarity, when he was president, refused to pardon him and still does not see him as a heroic figure.  His poor ass excuse was that no one can work for a foreign government and be considered a hero because that would set a precedent for future cases or even past convictions of spies.  However the exoneration and return of full citizenship and military rank clearly spoke of “conditions of higher necessity.” These “conditions” were Poland’s de facto lack of sovereignty.

And even that sent Kuklinski’s critics into a frenzy.  The said critics came not only from the Red camp of former Communist officers and officials, but also from some Solidarity circles, aforementioned Walesa included, as well as the influential Adam Michnik, a leftist intellectual (now the editor of Poland’s biggest daily paper Gazeta Wyborcza (Election Newspaper)), who was imprisoned for his anti-communist activities several times, though his opposition to Kuklinski seemed mostly to be politically motivated in relation to modern Polish politics.  Others simply just could not stomach anyone working for a foreign government at anytime under any circumstances.

So there we have it.  An officer does more to bring down the Commies than almost any individual, and opinion in Poland is divided.  Of course it is.  Poland would not be Poland if we did not argue amongst ourselves all the time over everything.  Unlike Poles who only lived in Poland I don’t have a problem with Kuklinski working for the CIA as much as some would.  I am a Pole and an American.  I love both countries almost equally.  I have lived here (the US) most of my life, close to 30 years.  So its natural that I love this country, plus I am not one who lives in the past.  But as a Pole I love Poland.  I am also a historian by education and love.  I appreciate Polish history more than most.  And as much as I do not live in the past and have accepted my new homeland as my own and love it as any properly patriotic American would, I can not forget my own roots.  Especially considering the times I have lived in and my parents and grandparents have lived in.  I do not take Polish independence for granted as perhaps many young people do these days.  But its great that they do, it means Poland is free and not under immediate threat.     

However, many a Pole can not stomach someone working for a foreign nation, even America, against Poland, even a Poland that was a vassal of the evil Soviet Empire.  These people have some reason in their beliefs, even if I disagree with them.  Colonel Kuklinski put his faith in America, he saw them as an ally.  After Yalta and many other incidents, Poles have a right to be weary of “Allies” of any kind.  Many of course dismiss Colonel Kuklinski’s motivations and great patriotism and see him as only a foreign agent.  And forget that many a great national hero served in foreign army.  The best example being the First World War during which Poles served under the order of Russia, Germany and Austro-Hungary, many a time fighting against one another.  But while they were serving their foreign masters many did so with the hope that this would help Poland regain its independence.  And it did.  So I have to disagree with them and assume that they see the world in a very simplistic way.  Their attitude also helps legitimize those who served their Soviet masters like good trained dogs.  I also assume that many feel the need to justify the PRL (Polish People’s Republic, commie Poland) because of the need to justify themselves and what they did during those times.

Colonel Kuklinski's Army id photo

The most vocal group in need of validation and justification consists of course of former officers and officials in the PRL.  They are Kuklinski’s biggest critics.  And they attacked him from all angles.  His motivation was questioned.  He was accused of doing this for money.  There were insinuations that he was in fact recruited by CIA while in Vietnam.  The CIA was said to have threatened to expose some unspecified transgressions.  He apparently was a sleeper agent for years and only activated in 1972.  Then they tried to belittle the value of information he gave the CIA.  Of course that contradicted many of their own statements as well as of those made by the Soviets themselves.  Then came the best one.  The pity angle.  Jaruzelski, the former “general” and dictator of Poland in the 80’s stated that if Kuklinski is a hero and not a traitor what does that make him and the thousands of officers and soldiers who served during the PRL.  Well I know what that makes him and those like him.  A servant dog of a foreign state that made Poland into a vassal of the USSR.  He is also a criminal who ordered the deaths and imprisonment of countless thousands of Poland’s best and brightest citizens.  Nothing less but.  And there were many like him, eager careerist servants of a foreign power who oppressed their own people.  However there were also many others who served because of honest beliefs and patriotism.  Those we have to separate from the servant dogs, even high ranking officers could be honest and patriotic and not have blood on their hands.  According to them an oath, no matter to whom it was given, is sacred.  These are the same people who ironically called Hitler’s soldiers fanatics because they were faithful to that evil bastard.  If Jaruzelski and his henchmen are right then so was the Wehrmacht, so were Hitler’s generals.  But history has proven that being a servant of evil, a mindless drone, or an eager dog like Jaruzelski is wrong.  That “I was following orders” bullshit does not fly anymore.  I understand that they do it.  They did it well too, because they have a considerable part of the Polish population believing their propaganda.  And good propaganda it was, begun in 1986 and is continued to this day.  But it does not make them any less wrong, nor any less of servants to a foreign master and true traitors of Poland and its people.  The saddest part is that Jaruzelski and his clique have convinced most of Poles (up to 60%) that the Martial law they imposed and the oppression that followed was actually for their own good.

Dec. 13, 1981, we got this instead of morning cartoons, and tanks on the streets.

Yes, the majority of Poles are convinced that the imposing of martial law, the killing of protesters, arrests of thousands, and general oppression was a lesser of two evils.  Because their “saviours” have convinced them that they saved Poland from a Soviet, or a Warsaw Pact invasion that would lead to great bloodshed.  Well, I call bullshit.  The Soviets, evidence in declassified documents supports this, were not going to invade.  Not after Colonel Kuklinski told the CIA they planned to.  In 1980!  Over year before the matrial law was actually imposed.  The Commie bastards, while talking and making deals with the Solidarity, were making plans to squash them.  And the Soviets wanted to help.  However once President Carter saw what Kuklinski gave the CIA, with the urging from Brzezinski, he threatened the USSR that if they do invade there will be unforeseeable consequences.  The Red Army quickly changed its mind and came to the conclusion that Poland was not worth the trouble of a possible nuclear war if things went too far.  Besides, they had a better idea.  They told the Poles to attend to their mess themselves.  Jaruzelski for his part practically begged the Soviets for help.  Even after they told him to do it with only Polish forces he asked for assistance in case things did not go as well as planned.  He was told no again, the Poles were ordered to do it themselves.  He wanted to resign, to his credit, but after being told to man up and do their bidding, being the coward that he is, he obliged and one cold Sunday morning I saw his face instead of cartoons.

So do excuse me if I do not believe that the man who presided over the politically motivated, anti-Semitic “cleansing” of the Army, who eagerly ordered troops into Czechoslovakia, and who ordered the Polish troops to shoot protesting Polish workers in 1970, and who allegedly was also a confidential agent of the Polish SB (our version of the KGB), is a saviour of Poland.  And that only he prevented a great tragedy in 1981.  No one supports his bullshit claim.  The problem with Poles in this case is twofold.  They respect anyone in uniform too much.  Poles really do revere their soldiers.  They will make all kinds of excuses for them as long as they wear a Polish uniform.  And they are too forgiving.  Our very own Caucescu was allowed to be the first President of a free Poland and then allowed to retire with a full pension.  We actually are supposed to be thankful to him for the peaceful transition to democracy.  When they finally got around to trying the bastard he cited ill health, his trial is still ongoing.  Meanwhile last month he was invited, along with all the other former presidents of post communist Poland, by the current president for an advisory conference before the visit to Poland of Russian president Medvedev.  The excuse given was that he has great expertise concerning all things Russian.  Well of  course he should, a dog knows its master like no other, and he served his masters faithfully for many decades.  It still does not excuse president Komorowski.  Jaruzelski should be a pariah, not an elder statesman invited to presidential conferences.  Its pathetic and wrong!

But this kind of opposition to Kuklinski being proclaimed a national hero is understandable really, and expected.  He left them, he betrayed them and their masters.  What is not expected is that Walesa and some from the Solidarity oppose him and even call Kuklinski a traitor.  But here too we can see their intentions.  Walesa and the Solidarity see themselves as the only rightful, aside from maybe the Pope John Paul II, saviours of Poland.  And if Kuklinski is given the credit he deserves they fear that history will judge them differently.  Basic jealousy.  Understandable, even if wrong.  There is enough room for credit to all.  The fall of Communism in Poland and the end of the Cold War had many heroes and adding one very important one to the pantheon wont diminish the contributions and sacrifices of others.  Others still are bitter that neither Kuklinski nor the USA, while possessing the knowledge of the impending Martial Law warned them about it.  He was after all not in danger anymore.  What was the motivation?  Well I can’t speak for the Reagan administration.  But Kuklinski claimed that if the Solidarity was warned the plans might have been changed and it could have led to more bloodshed.  The Solidarity was under constant surveillance and was infiltrated by SB agents even at its highest echelons.  Any attempt of organized resistance would have been met with force.  The Poles who so revere their soldiers conveniently forget how willingly the army participated in the 1970 crackdown and during the Martial law itself.  Any proper resistance was impossible.  Perhaps some Solidarity members could have avoided arrest, but at what price?  Unfortunately, they do not ask themselves that question.

So there you have it.  Revered and reviled, accused of everything possible.  Such was the life and tragedy of Colonel Kuklinski.  And the tragedy extended to his family.  For years they lived in hiding, under assumed names.  They were forced to move frequently, they were not able to participate in Polish-American life openly.  They lived in fear.  Such was his reward for helping to stop a nuclear holocaust.  In 1994, within the space of 6 months he lost both of his sons.  One disappeared with a friend of the Florida Keys while diving, their boat was found several days later, their bodies never recovered.  The other was killed when hit by a car.  The driver fled, leaving no fingerprints in the car!!!!  There are unsubstantiated claims that this was revenge by the commies for what he did.  There is no evidence of that however.  But while I am not a believer in conspiracy theories, its very hard for me to believe there were just mere accidents, plus it would not be the first time the commies took revenge on someone.

Perhaps I exaggerated in the title.  No one man could stop WWIII, but he did more than most.  After he saw that the Soviet plans basically assumed that Poland, as a vital communication line, would be nuked back to the stone age in an event of a war with the West, he did everything possible to prevent that.  It must be remembered that this was the time of the Vietnam war.  The US Army was in crisis in the early 70’s.  Its eyes not properly focused on Europe and the Soviet threat.  The US needed to match the Soviets on the ground.  And they did, from the late 70’s onward the US begun an arms race that the Soviets could not hope to match.  It finally broke them.  The Soviets deny that those plans were for an offensive war.  However all of their equipment and doctrine suggests nothing else.  And one Soviet general smugly claimed that the French Western Atlantic coast was not very far from them.

In the end Colonel Kuklinski won.  He got his honour and rank back.  He was able to go back to Poland for a tour of sorts.  He was honoured by several Polish cities which gave him honourary citizenship.  His ashes, were returned to Poland and he was buried in the Powazki Cemetery (our Arlington) with full military honours.  But while he is a hero of the Cold War and a hero in America, his status still is debated in the country he did all this for.  But we should take heart in the fact that when asked if he would do it again, he said he would, and this time he would work even harder.  In order to save his country he had to betray it and the uniform he loved.  That is not an easy choice to make for anyone.  Especially a person of integrity and honour that the Colonel was. For that I thank you Colonel Kuklinski.  And to me at least you are a true national hero of Poland.

The links I promised for those who want more:

CIA Article on the Vilification of Col. Kuklinski

A very good book on his life in English

Somewhat Different View of Kuklinski

CIA Released Documents

An effort much better than mine

Mosque Near Ground Zero In New York?

No that’s not how its going to look like.  That picture is from Asia.  And technically its not even supposed to be a mosque, but a Muslim Cultural Center.  With a swimming pool among other things.  But that’s not the point.  This is the point:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Yep, that is it.  At this point I should just stop writing because the argument is over.  But apparently some of the people who are against the building of this Center have heard of the First Amendment of the US Constitution and still are opposed to it.  Wow.  Just wow.  A county that prides itself on letting any one believe in any thing no matter how stupid, is against building a center that caters to a religion.  And not some cult dreamt up yesterday, but a 1400 year old religion with about 1.5 billion followers.  And why?  Because 19 lunatics attacked us in September 11, 2001 and destroyed the World Trade Center in the name of their god.

What bullshit.

Their pathetic excuse is that’s its too close to the site of the WTC.  Only two blocks away.  What the hell does that mean?  What would not be too close?  4 blocks?  Because that is how far a mosque is located from Ground Zero right now.  Its been there before the Twin Towers were built.  Does that not insult anyone?  Or hurt anyone’s feelings?  People stating that the Center should not be built are saying that the whole of Islam is somehow responsible for the 9-11 attacks.  How many called for the banning of all militias after the Oklahoma bombing?  Or is it ok when a white, right wing nutter does it?  Then its only an act of an individual lunatic.  Here a billion and a half people are held responsible.

And the pathetic thing is that there are millions of Muslims in America, American born and bred.  And apparently they had something to do with it.  Quite a few of those men serve in our military.  We even have Muslim chaplains.  But no.  Fuck you and your Allah.  What one person does in your name, you do too, no matter how insane.  So we can safely come to the conclusion that all Baptists laugh when our soldiers die.  Damn those Baptists.  How could they all be like that?  Perhaps we should stop building baptist Churches?  After all, those freaks from Westboro speak for all of them.  Yeah, I know, doesn’t make any sense.  Well neither is protesting a fucking cultural center or a mosque using the same logic you cretin.

This is how that dreaded Center will look. Nice actually.

What we have here is a movement against a whole faith.  And its not about Ground Zero, that’s just a pathetic excuse.  There are morons all over America protesting mosques left and right.  Tennessee, California, Wisconsin are just a few states.  No attacks there.  No people died because of Islam.  I bet those who specifically argue just against this one in NY, quietly are with those protesters from other parts of America.  That idiot Newt Gingrich said that there shouldn’t be a mosque built in NY till they allow churches and synagogues in Saudi Arabia.  Ah yes, that beacon of freedom that America always tried to emulate, Saudi Arabia.  Unreal.  Another idiot, some American family group leader said that there should be no mosques at all in the United States.  Yep, who cares about the Constitution, I’m angry at some dark skinned people.  Fuck ’em and their god.

Some peace loving Christians tried to burn and bomb mosques that were already standing.  Genius.  The best way to show how someone else is violent is to bomb the shit out of them and burn their house of worship.  Really?  We’re going to have a religious war now?  Middle Ages are back?  Will we have crosses on our uniforms?  Or the stars of David perhaps?  Cause the idiots at ADL are also opposed to the center near Ground Zero.  But just watch those hypocrites bite at anyone who says what they see as anti-Semitic, real or imagined.  If someone was opposed to building a synagogue or a Jewish cultural center anywhere, for any reason, they would all have kittens.  But no.  Muslim bad.  Allah bad, Muhammad bad, mosque bad.  What’s next?  No more hummus?  Freedom Dip!!!  God forbid some woman puts a towel on her wet hair.  A terrorist with a hairdryer.  She might burn though the pipes to cause a leak to flood America.  Make sure all bathrooms are watched.

What the fuck is wrong with us?  My god.  Well I don’t really do god, but you know what I mean.  We stopped hating blacks and the Irish and Italians, and the Eastern Europeans.  Well thank the Pope that the Mexicans are Catholic otherwise we would have no one to pick our strawberries or mow our lawns, we would have 50 Arizonas, but much harsher.  I don’t like to run around and accuse people of bias, bigotry or racism.  But that is just what it is.  If they  were nice and properly white like all normal people should be, and have European culture and manners we would see them for what they are.  Normal people who believe in their god as any god fearing Christian would.  Only their bad luck that a few lunatics run around bombing shit and killing innocent people in their name.

Some modern mosque, looks awesome.

Seriously.  Can we not tell the difference?  Are we that ignorant?  Surely we can’t be.  because the more we go on like that the more we resemble the extremists we hate and fear so much.  And that is the point of all this.  I am not defending Muslims.  I don’t care for them very much.  Nor for their customs.  I like to drink once in a bit, I like women in bikinis.  I don’t particularly care for their faith either.  I don’t care for any religion.  I do respect religions.  But I also fear them.  Just for that reason.  Anyone who strongly believes he is right will easily justify all kinds of shit.  I fear fundamentalists.  Of all forms, from religious nutters to warring atheists.  From those idiots who kill anything that moves and call it hunting or a sport, to those morons at PETA who would kill a person before they would see someone hurt a cockroach.  They are all frightening.  I do fear them.  But not to the point of becoming like them.  Never to the point of really hating them.

Because most Muslims, like most Christians or atheists, are just good hard working people who want to live out their lives in a peaceful good way.  And just as I do not condemn all American Protestants whenever Par Robertson says something truly stupid and hurtful.  I do not condemn all atheists whenever one says idiotic things about religion.  I also do not condemn all of Islam for 9-11.  And it was my city they attacked.  They killed people I knew.  They destroyed two of my favourite buildings.  I really did love the Twin Towers.  But if all of Islam was like those 19 fanatical dicks then we would be losing by now.  Because guess what.  Its hard to kill one and a half billion people.  But they don’t all want to kill us.  They don’t all want to do Jihad and get virgins.  The ones that do hate the West, hate us for what we are and for what we stand.  They sure as shit would not let anyone build a church in Afghanistan.  In fact the Taliban blew up ancient Buddhist statues when they were running Afghanistan.

Destroyed by the Taliban

Do we really want to take example from Taliban?  What makes us any better when we act like that?  Yoda said:  Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. He was wise.  We can not become what we fear.  But slowly we are.  When we act like intolerant twats.  No one is telling you to like the Muslims.  But you have to tolerate them.  This is what America is all about.  A motley collection of people not killing each other.  One would hope that in the XXI century Americans would be more enlightened then the Spanish inquisitors.  But one might be wrong.  And that is sad.  And some of our leaders and opinion makers fail us once again.  Once again they take the wrong stand aimed at the wrong people.  And some are quite learned.  Some know better.  Yet they do it any way.  For a rating point.  For a future vote.  Some like Beck love to bring up Nazism all the time.  Well this is how they started.  With hate.  They did not go out on the first day and say:  We’re going to murder millions of Jews for no good reason.  No, they started preparing people by doing the little things first. It was only then that the Holocaust became possible.  Now of course America is not likely to become like the Nazis.  But we’re more and more starting to resemble those intolerant and hateful Islamic fundamentalists we hate so much.

Will Consumerism “Consume” Us?

After September 11th 2001 President George Bush told us to shop.  Made it a patriotic duty of every American to go and buy useless crap they don’t really need, otherwise the terrorists will win.  Now his heart was in the right place, but it had consequences.  We have become a consumer society.  That is our great achievement.  We buy shit.  We didn’t revolutionize society.  We did not fix the environment.  We did not eradicate disease, or hunger.  We did not eliminate wars.  We do not create great art, write great books, make beautiful architecture.  We did not go further into space.  No, none of that.  But we did something no other generation or culture did before us.  We bought a lot of useless, cheap, and unneeded crap.  That is our mark in history.  We won the Cold War and we went to the mall.  And already we see the results.  because not only did we go shopping, we bought everything on credit.  Now not everything is our fault.  The technological revolution of the past decades made our lives easier, but that came at a cost.

Lets look at our bills and compare them to bills our parents or grandparents had.  Just a few decades ago people had to pay rent/mortgage, gas, electric, telephone.  That was it.  Now we pay all those mentioned above and we add, cellphone, cable/satellite, and internet.  Some families have 4 cellphones.  Cell plans vary too, texting, internet, can add up.  That’s about $ 200 to $ 400 per month depending on family size and needs extra on top of what our parent had to pay.

And bill sizes for the traditional stuff have greatly increased too.  Our energy consumption has skyrocketed over the last few decades.  A home 40 years ago probably had a refrigerator, washing machine, radio, television, a toaster, air conditioning.  Now we have more than one radio, most homes have multiple television sets, coffee maker, microwave oven, computer, printer, cable box, dvd player, a video game system, and numerous chargers for all the portable gadgets.  That’s on top of the juicers, espresso machines, humidifiers, air purifiers and a lot of other stuff.  Even if all those things are much more energy efficient, the electric bill is still much more than it was.

30 years ago no one collected movies, or TV shows.  Almost every home these days has a sizable collection.  Music is available in many different formats.  The gadgets we own bring more expenses.  That iPhone needs a case, a bluetooth head set, the printer needs ink and paper, the computer new programs, games, anti virus software.  The XBox, Wii or PS3 has a new game coming out.  The new season of Lost is out on BluRay, the electric toothbrush needs changing.  Plus there is a new good movie available on demand, or an event.  Etc, etc, etc.

We simply have more shit to buy.  And in a society like ours its hard to not to fall into the cycle of constantly buying new things.  Some of them we even need and could use.  Hell some are quite beneficial to our lives.  We are barraged by images and sounds all urging us to buy.  Our neighbours just bought a new tv, our 2 year old plasma is ancient technology, we need the new LCD tv.

And that’s on top of what we eat.  Now we maybe a country that eats badly and wastes money on junk food, which btw, is quite expensive, but even normal food costs a lot these days.  We have more choice now.  No more of 3 types of cheese and two types of ham.  Now we have food from all over the world.  All that costs more than domestic products.  We have beer from all over the world too.  Hell we buy bottled water now.  For generations people got by drinking from the tap.  Now we wont have it.  At the very least we filter our water.  Hell we pay for filtered bottled water (check your brand folks, you’re probably paying a lot of money for tap water in a bottle).

Yep we have choices.  Choices in everything.  We might have stopped buying newspapers and magazines, but we get more information then ever before.  And its not just local information.  In my bookmarks I have 8 different news sources from all over the world, all just a mouse click away.  We have several 24hr news networks (no matter how bad they may be, but still, we have them).  We have hundreds of channels to watch.  We play video games.  We chat, blog (yeah, I see the irony), we go on internet forums, social networking sites, sport websites, hobby websites and on and on and on.

Its not just more money that we are spending.  We are busier than ever.  Again, its not all bad, hell a lot of it is great.  But it does come as a price.  While going broke we are also losing sleep, friendships, family time.  And the worst part is, we do not appreciate what we have.  We work our respective asses off to get the crap we have and we appreciate none of it.  Those older of us can remember how big a deal a new toy was.  It was cheap, quite likely not what we wanted, but hell, we got something new.  And we cherished it.  And cherished it for a long time.  Can a person who has 200 movies really cherish each and every one of them?  How long will the joy of a newly purchased movie last?  Or a new video game?  A new album?  Not very long is my guess.

That is a problem with choice.  Its great to have choice, but when we let things consume us we become like modern children.  Every year, with a very few rare exceptions, kids fall in love with something.  And before their parents or uncles and aunts figure out what it is, they call it lame and move onto the next thing.  We have toys and tv shows that pander to specific age.  Not age groups like 5-10 year olds.  But a single  age.  The following year the thing they loved so much is now lame, and they watch new shows and need new toys.  And kids are not the only ones.  Adults are just as bad, worse actually.

Adults work hard to get their stuff.  But they need that new iPhone, or the new iPod.  But next year Apple will come out with a new model, the one they must have, so that old will go into rubbish and the new version of the iPhone will be bought.  We simply must have it, it has more memory, looks nicer, it can record videos, or we can watch tv on it.  Great.  Just the thing that we need.  We definitely do not spend enough time watching television, we need to be able to do it while we are out of the house.  Because what is the alternative here.  God forbid we would be forced to look at our surroundings, or worse, talk to another human being in person.  Can’t have that.  We buy a new television.  We spent a lot of money for it.  Now we need a new HD box, and new surround sound system.  A BluRay player.  Our film collection needs to be replaced.  And when we finally set it up some asshole comes out on tv or internet and tells us that there is a newer and better television out.

Yes folks, as soon as we bring something home its pretty much obsolete.  So we watch our television, and soon we will be tired of it.  And soon we will be working hard to get a new one, a better one.  Till we buy it.  Cause by then an even newer one will be made, and that’s the one we will need to have.  We actually obsess over these stupid things.  And no, I am not some preachy superior asshole who thinks he is better.  I am a part of this society, I am part of the problem.  Not as extreme as many, but no saint either.  But where does it end?  It ends with us very briefly adoring inanimate objects for a very high price.  We bought (literally) into this notion that we must, to have any sense of self worth, own a lot of stuff, and not just any kind of stuff, it has to be the newest and the best.

Is a new video game or a toy worth spending precious hours that we waste standing in line for it?  Really?  We must have it the day it comes out otherwise our lives will become meaningless?  Will our kids stop loving us if we do not buy the hundreds of dollars worth of crap they wont touch six months from now?  Will our friends stop talking to us if we call them on an old model phone?  We have become what the advertisers wanted us to become.  We have become addicted to their products.  Will my old 4 blade razor not shave as well as it did a year ago now that the 5 blade razor is available?  Did no one think of making a 5 blade razor when only 2 blade razors were available?  Was our skin not prepared for such luxury?  Was there no technology to attach more than 3 razors at one time?  Did it need to be 3 and then 4 and then 5?  Could we not just have gone from 2 to 5?  Or from 3 to 5?

No, of course not.  Think of all the money we spent on those stupid razors.  And each model gets more expensive, and the cartridges now are more than double of what they cost just a few years back.  Question is though, does it shave twice as good as the old one?  No of course not.  It shaves maybe a bit better, but definitely nowhere near the cost.  We gained marginal improvement at over twice the cost.  Yep.  We are slaves to our products.  And when they will make a 6 blade razor we will gladly discard that very expensive 5 blade one and buy the newest model as if our lives depended on it.

We shop to make ourselves feel good.  Then we realize we just wasted a perfectly good day on buying shit.  We will find out at home that some of the stuff we bought does not suit us, or that we don’t really like it or need it.  And we will find that we have spent a shitload of money on that crap.  So we will go back to work, miserable and poor.  Until we see the next thing we definitely must have and we just know it will make us feel better.  And so on.  The new circle of life, brought to you by your local mall.  We had the Greatest Generation.  We had the Baby Boomers.  We now have the Mall Generation.

Those Pesky Immigrants

Give me your tired....

The Pot Has Melted?

I appears so.  No one wants immigrants.  Even those for immigration reform do not want any more.  Perhaps we  should change the Statue of Liberty sign from:

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses
yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

To one that says:

“No vacancy”

Like they do in motels.  Lets face it folks, we don’t want immigrants.  In fact, we don’t know what to do with the ones we have.  And that’s what I want to write about.

We’re building a wall.  Yes, the people of America, land of immigrants, and land of Ronald “Mr. Gorbachev tear down this Wall” Reagan are building a wall (fence we call it, but come on) to keep immigrants out.  Now whether you agree or disagree with this, you must sit back and think for a second of the ramifications of this.  Wow.  We do not wish to be a nation of immigrants any longer.  Its that simple.

So yes, America wants to seal itself.  Ok.  I doubt we can, the best thing that is happening to the anti-immigrant people is the ever plunging dollar and our unemployment rate.  For most Europeans it does not pay to come to America any more.  That only leaves our Latin neighbours, but they too will stop coming in such numbers if our economy does not improve.

But what do we do with the over 10 million illegals here?  We don’t want to give them legal status, we don’t want them to work, we don’t want to give them healthcare, we don’t want their kids to go to our schools.  “Get them out” they scream.  Great.  How?  Truth is we can’t and we wont.  America has enough troubles running after real criminals, it may be too busy to go after working families.  Because that’s what most immigrants are.  Hard working people.  Technically yes they are committing a crime by staying here.  But honestly now, its like jaywalking in NYC, no one really cares.  They are not taking away our precious resources.  They are in fact helping America.  But that’s not the point.  I do not wish to discuss how and if illegal immigrant are contributing to our society.

I want to talk about the fact that they are here.  And we’re not doing anything about it.  The very conservative George W. Bush tried.  Sadly he failed.  I say sadly because it was the most sensible plan anyone has come up with in a number of years.  Now he may not have been the author of it, but it became “his” bill.  It was going to pave a way for the over 10 million people to legalize their status.  It wanted to do so sensibly IMO, and without too much hardship on anyone.  Yet America screamed a resounding NO!  Why?  It made sense.  We have, again, 10 million people living here illegally.   No matter how we try we wont wish them away.  Its impossible, and would be cruel, to get rid of them.  Remember, some have been here 10 or 20 years.  Some are quite assimilated.  Yet we refuse them.

Is it because so many are the wrong shade?  It wasn’t the lack of jobs what made us scream no.  Times where pretty good then.  It was not crime.  Crime level are quite low, and immigrants are not disproportionate there I believe.  And its not as if president Bush’s plan called for citizenship certificates for criminals.  We deport them as is our policy.  So why?  Why do we not want these people here?  The old excuse is “rewarding an illegal activity.”  Would we be?  Technically yes.  But they would be paying fees and fines.  And then best of all, they would be paying taxes because they would be working legally.  We could have had a provision in the bill that would disqualify them from welfare and similar govt aid programs.  Each perspective applicant would have to provide proof of work.  They would have to be self-sufficient.  Yet we screamed no.

To me it makes no sense.  We choose to have them live among us, but do not accept them.  They are our neighbours.  Yet we don’t want them here at all.  They are not the worst neighbours.  But we run the risk of making them into such.  Europe has problems with its illegals, and legals for that matter.  Its is because their immigrants are not fully accepted into their societies, and therefore they do not assimilate as much as American immigrants did.  But now we are running the same risk.  American immigrants assimilated quickly and almost seamlessly.  But they wont if we do not accept them  This can provide for future social upheaval.  This also can become a security risk.  The more disaffected immigrants we have, the higher the risk of them turning against America.

Trouble is after the proposed bill failed, immigration reform has become taboo.  No one touched it in the last presidential election.  And no one will touch it now.  Yes, the great and all powerful man of hope and change will not change anything when it comes to immigration reform.  That’s right.  The man who fights for the common people wont do a damned thing.  Either because he can’t or simply because he wont, Obama wont touch that one with a ten foot pole.  The Democratic run Legislature wont do anything either.  Mostly because they are cowards.  Its a volatile issue, so they wont touch it.  They rather concentrate on reducing our emissions by 1% by 2137.  They are scared, elections are only a year away, and its only 3 years till the next presidential election.  So they wont even try.  Meanwhile 10 million people live among us, unsure of their future in America.

I know these people.  I live in New York City.  I am an immigrant myself (legal before anyone asks :D).  I live among them.  They are mostly good people.  They work, want to raise their kids, they dream of owning a house, they dream of making a better life for themselves and their kids.  To be sure, some are assholes.  Yes, they are just like any people in America.  Whether your ancestors came on the Mayflower or whether your mom and dad came from Kathmandu, they are like all of us.  Many even want to serve our country, and defend it from foes.  And not because they want their “Green Card,” but because they are flag waving patriots.  Yes like you and me.

But again, I will hear, we shall not reward crime.  Fine.  Provide me with an alternative.  But please, have one that makes sense, not some idealistic crap where by the end of the weekend Federal Agents will rid us of those pesky free loaders who should not be here in the first place.  Well sorry, they ARE here, and they are not leaving.  What are we to do about them?