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8 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - Yes, Mr. Waldman, the ... · 0 replies · +4 points

1920's and early 1930's Czechoslovakia was a weird beast for the era, a combination of classical liberal ideology with a strong ethnonationalist undercurrent. Czechs were a narrow majority, but the nation being a democracy meant they tended to dominate the elections.

The big issue in Czechoslovakia in that period would actually look remarkably similar to the issues in Ukraine today: a lack of federalism and comparative lack of self-determination for ethnic minorities. Germans were the largest minority, but Slovaks also saw this as a serious problem throughout the period.

That said, Czechoslovakia in the 1920's-1930's never went off the rails to the extent 2014-15 Ukraine has. Germans were irked by the lack of autonomy in their portion of Bohemia, and Slovaks likewise in Slovakia, but the Czech-dominated government at the very least granted some nominal protections to both, including the right to use their respective languages for official business. Significant German parties were at times in the 1920s part of coalition governments, though never more than a token offering.

The controversy may have been real to some extent, but the "crisis" which Hitler capitalized on was very much invented, and the result of Nazi Germany heavily subsidizing a German nationalist party in the Sudetenland to stir up trouble.

The problems of 1920's Germans in Czechoslovakia wouldn't even register as problems to most people. They dominated one of the most prosperous regions in the country, which was itself one of the most prosperous countries in central Europe at the time. Admittedly, they couldn't have serious political aspirations, and the best they could hope for was some provincial position in a comparatively powerless provincial government, but the Czech central government was quite economically liberal and didn't impose any really onerous restrictions on anyone doing business.

8 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - NORAD's annual Santa W... · 0 replies · +2 points

yup, thanks for the catch.

9 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - ISIS Cited as Michigan... · 2 replies · +10 points

note: the police chief of Oakley is also the police chief of Waterloo Township, Michigan, which is about 80 miles south. He also owns/operates a collections company called Due Process of Michigan.

9 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - ISIS Cited as Michigan... · 0 replies · +1 points

Last month when they first unsuccessfully tried to shut the police down one of the trustees called the sheriff but he claimed it was just a "labor dispute" or something and refused to get involved.

10 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - Swiss Wargame Invasion... · 0 replies · -3 points

The Swiss military couldn't credibly claim to be setting up major defensive plans against France though. Instead of the plausible scenario of France getting more and more hawkish and attacking them Napoleon-style (and overrunning them Napoleon-style) they had to invent a crazy future scenario where Burgundy reemerges as an independent state 350 years after t has had any distinct national identity, breaking effortlessly away from a nation that is in growing financial turmoil, then somehow gives rise to a non-state actor paramilitary faction that is big enough to credibly sack major cities but for some reason thinks robbing banks in a foreign country is their best bet.

The whole scenario underscores just how ridiculously far one has to go to imagine a scenario where Switzerland's conscript military could conceivably even get into a border skirmish with an enemy that isn't either so small it daren't attack or so overwhelmingly larger than them that it overruns them outright and turns the issue not into one of military defense but of Iraq-style insurgency.

10 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - Judge Expels Sikh From... · 0 replies · +9 points

On the contrary: what you wear in a courtroom is pretty much universally left up to the judge's discretion. No hats is common, but it's not a law, and you never see judges hassling nuns to remove their coifs. There's another big caveat though:

Many (if not most) venues have explicit non-discrimination laws forbidding their courts from denying access to people on the basis of religion, race, disability, etc. Denying a required religious article is the same under these laws as telling the crippled guy the court doesn't allow wheelchairs or the near-sighted guy that the court doesn't allow eyeglasses.

Since anti-SIkh, anti-Muslim, and anti-a-lot-of-stuff discrimination has been a thing for a long time, it should surprise no one that this has come up before, and when challenged in a venue with a no discrimination rule, it is universally accepted that you can't ban required religious symbols of any sort.

10 years ago @ Antiwar.com Original A... - Smearing Glenn Greenwa... · 0 replies · 0 points

On the one hand it's really annoying to listen to the MSNBC/CNBC/Fox/CNN types ramble on about whether Snowden had mono in high school or the size of Glenn Greenwald's dog.

On the other hand we already knew those guys sucked, so maybe it's better that they just play with their toys and win their awards while the rest of us deal with the big boy issues. Seriously, how much help would David Gregory and Andrew Sorkin be even if they had noble intentions?

10 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - The X-Ray Death Ray · 0 replies · +2 points

Our mechanical men would never rob banks. They will blow the hell out of some Pakistani guy's house though.

10 years ago @ News From Antiwar.com - Scientific Journals Mu... · 0 replies · +1 points

yeah it seems like the better point would be that post-Revolution Iran, which is the one the US has been so hostile toward, hasn't started a war ever.

10 years ago @ Antiwar.com Blog - Dennis Rodman's North ... · 0 replies · +1 points

I think its an Only Nixon Could Go to China thing.