Hold on..Time out..

Dear arab bloggers and readers, I am confused about something and would like to ask you all about it: When- and with all due respect to the angryarab and his shoe-tossing-at-TV-father, who I am sure really did enjoy throwing shoes at his TV and it wasn't at all a way for AS'AD to ride the wave of publicity of ShoeGate- exactly, did shoe-throwing become the symbol of arab protest? When did this start exactly? Cause, ehh, it never happend in Egypt, and I am sure it never happend in Jordan, and those plucky gulfies didn't hear of shoes till recently, so no, no history there; then please, why do you prepetuate a silly and stupid media-created steroetype that somehow you grew up throwing your shoes at anything you disliked? What, you got sick of being called stone-throwers or something, so now you are sticking to shoes? Is this really the best you could come up with?

I mean sure, I know many amongst you feel as impotent as a 70 year old man who had his testicles removed when it comes to the "Global imperialist conspiracy" against arabs and those americans and jews who are just killing your kin for the hell of it, but to feel so vindicated and inspired because one guy managed to throw two shoes at a US president and MISSED TWICE that you now have decided to adopt the gesture as the symbol of arab anger, well, that's kinda..well.not kinda..THAT'S PATHETHIC! It was pathethic when you felt vindicated by two missed shoes and it's even more pathethic now that you have adopted shoe-throwing as YOUR THING TO DO at protests. What? 4X4 chants no longer get your blood pumping? Do you wear old shoes especially for the protests now? Do your carry an extra pair so you can walk him in it, or do you rummage throw the shoes trying to find yours at the end of the protest? And finally, do you, at any time before, during or after you go to a shoe-throwing protest, feel as if you are a stupid silly dimwit? Please tell me. I would like to know!

Comments

  1. BBC news agency ran a radio show where people got to comment on this particular incidence. Many approved and many disapproved, but the problem was that the majority of Egyptian, up to 90% according to some online poll, were in favor of it, some went all the long to name the perpetrator a hero.

    Just to show you where our community is heading towards.

  2. Now I know why they make you take your shoes off in mosques!

  3. On behalf of all sane Lebanese, I apologize for the existence of people like As’ad.

  4. Not that I’m against the sentiment, but eggs would’ve been way more practical and messier even if he missed. What a psychotic war criminal like Bush deserves is a cell in the Hague.

  5. Agreed Mohamed..

    To Sandmonkey, please tell me your visa is getting extended or that Sarah Goldman/Goodman chic that you have been sucking upto for months is finally giving you some. I mean what other reasons could there be to be such a sell out like that. Lot’s of us don’t agree with what goes on and appreciate witty satire now and then. But come on, duude, seriously. Your not feeling comfortable in your own skin is seeping through the cracks already.

  6. Sell out? And what do you call yourself, trollish person? You are at least as far away from mainstream American public opinion than SM is from Egyptian, wouldn’t you say? Oh, but in your case I bet you view that as “noble”, don’t you? lol.

  7. Arabs are media whores, especially Palestinians.
    Mabeysada2o yela2o moda gedeeda for protesting and they whore it around for the international media.
    I am sick of this shit…

  8. Better shoes than stones – shoes are more padded and less harmful to the victim than stones.
    Maybe the incident of shoe throwing is a first hint that the Arabs at last beginning the long and arduous process of getting civilized.

  9. adrian from Denmark says:

    I think it’s bit sad to see them thriowing away all their dignaty together with their shoes, but if that’s what they want then it’s their own problem.

    Just wait till the day they realise that all shoemanufactures are jews and they finally realized that it was all a conspiracy to make them support the jews economically.

  10. so you’re trying to tell me you never heard of the expression “haddeeek bel gazma!! (i’ll hit you with my shoe)” before? i don’t recall anyone saying those words in english or any other language before, so to me that’s enough reason to believe that we always DID regard throwing shoes or hitting with shoes an act of anger that we (as arabs) sometimes resort to.

  11. actually, now that I think of it, we do sometimes ask in hebrew ‘have you ever seen a slipper chasing you?’, with the implied notion that if you don’t shut up you’re gonna get a slipper thrown at you. Maybe that’s the middle east growing on us..

  12. na’al abuk

  13. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7822574.stm

    The prince had to apologise in 2005 for wearing a swastika armband to a party, which offended many Jewish people.

    The newspaper said the prince had called the soldier “our little Paki friend”.

    In a separate incident, Prince Harry is heard calling another officer cadet a “raghead”, the News of the World said.

    They must be really lovin this shit where all the brown people slaughter eachother and they get to show up on TV pretending to have the moral high ground, eh?

    Shoe-throwing? You guys know that’s gonna be the demeaning stereotype, don’t you?

  14. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/7822195.stm

    Scottish nationals, attacking the US embassy now? This is some pretty amazing shit. Seriously. I’ve been around a long time, and this is looking like it’s going to be pretty bad. I’m starting to get worried about my Arab friends, what few of them I still have. I’d worry about my European friends too, except I don’t have any. I don’t think it’s going to go away this time.

  15. To British readers of this blog… how’s about extraditing those people to the US to stand trial? You are proud members of the “civilized nations” club, right? So we Americans aren’t expected to pretend that British nationals didn’t just commit an act of war against the US, right? Isn’t that what Europeans keep saying? They expect Israel and the US to live up to European standards because we are civilized countries? Are Europeans civilized? Show us. Extradite those perps. All 300 of em. We can have a nice big show trial to expose European hypocrisy – peace activists who commit acts of war, during a peace rally. Should be fun!

  16. e. weisbord says:

    Obviously, a bad arab version of the ‘LIFE OF BRIAN’ (sandal scene) a true classic, whereas in the arab version of shoe throwing the cl -ass-ic is all in the spelling.

  17. @ Peter 11, of course you are right! But it is a fact when you make an Arab look bad, you will get brownie points from us, your American Imperialists OK. Hence Sandmonkeys attempts to gain brownie points and trust by those who would abhor him at first glance because he is an Arab.

    All I would have to say is Fuck Arabs and their wishy washy terrorist drama, and because I am Arab, I will get fan mail from all corners of the earth by those who wish to see the demise of Arabs.

    Just as a Jew who states they don’t support Israel. I mean holy fucking legendary status. We are talking Heisman’s trophy here.

  18. Who gives you brownie points for making Americans look bad, Sand Ape?

  19. Sand Ape, isn’t there enough misery in the world without giving out prizes for “making people look bad”, from demeaning them? I know a lot of Americans and many Jews from Israel and the US, and frankly, I have never, ever heard any of them speaking badly about Arabs as a group. I know that we have hateful people in the US, the KKK, and other hate groups, but these aren’t the people I associate with or listen to. A message of hate, demonizing a group of people is not a message worth listening to.

  20. Spend less money can be cheap wow gold , as soon as possible to mmoinn.com to buy wow gold and wow power leveling it! Let you enjoy the fun of the game!

  21. Eva, Canada says:

    Nadavu #2 :…Now I know why they make you take your shoes off in mosques!…

    I … am … catching … breath … after … my…. laughing… fit …

  22. Craig, get off of my dick already please – slurp. slurp – :)

  23. I AM NOT GAY, so kindly stay the fuck away from me you Fag!

    Can’t you respect that?!

  24. أه يا أمة ضحكت من جهلها الأمم

  25. You fantasize about sex with men and then claim you aren’t gay? I’m not sure whether you want people to laugh at that or not, so I’ll just leave it alone!

  26. Thanks for another insightful post, before I began reading your blog I had a quite biased view to the whole Israel Palestine conflict (Pro Israel). Now after reading some of your blogs and the fantastic Sarah Goldman blog my views have morphed into something more neutral and balanced.

    No side is right nor completely wrong and to repeat the old adage ‘Why can’t people just forgive and forget and try to get along’

    Oh and I think Sand Ape is gay too

  27. 6. Sand Ape, SM is entitled to his opinion, even if he is egyptian and muslim. Throwing your shoes in anger IS sort of ridiculous and slightly degrading, so I say cudos to him for having the balls to critizise his own when he has good reason. Then again, see my cooment to Omer:

    9. Omer, I’m with you all the way – better shoes than stones! I think it’ a step (excuse the pun) in the right direction, and for that reason alone I will stop my giggling when the shoe becomes the new symbol of muslim protest…

    15. Craig, relax – a handful of fruits “attacking” an embassy is not an act of war. They’d have to have national uniforms on to qualify for that. Remember the french sinking of Rainbow Warrior in a New Zealand harbour? American nuclear bombs in Greenland despite a danish ban on atomic weapons? Those incidents are much closer to acts of war than this…

  28. George Bush says:

    I am almost finished with this thankless job, but before I leave for good, I just want to thank that moronic idiot for the shoes. Size 10, and just my size. They shined up great.

    But as a political comment, or even as an insult at a social gathering, it really is lame. Could there be a better metaphor for middle eastern political relevance? And of course the reaction of the Arab street is even more cringe worthy.

    “Oh, that brave intrepid reporter, he threw his shoes at President Bush! MY HERO!” “Yay, he is so brave! He threw his shoes!”

    I really only used to hold the entire region in contempt, but now that I’m leaving office, that feeling has changed to profound pity.

    As societies and cultures, you really are pathetic.

    Just sayin’.

  29. I think Sand Ape is alright, even if he is gay. It’s not easy to accept someone from your own camp with anti-concensus views. Freedom of speech also means the freedom to criticize speech. As long as we allow each other to be heard (which we can’t help, since this is the internet after all), it’s all fine.

  30. anti-zionist jew says:

    Did Gazans throw shoes at Egyptian border police in Rafah for not letting them in?

  31. to Sand Ape, and others,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eTGbP55HGi8

    check this out :)

    you will like it…

  32. 32. anti-zionist jew: Wouldn’t it have been nice if they had…?

  33. Abu Sa'ar says:

    George Bush said it all for me. Except that I used to believe the Arab world can change (rather than hold it in contempt). People like SM, Drima, Jeha and so on – good, sane people – seemed like a welcome and promising break from the general violent hysteria perpetually gripping the Arab world.

    Now I just feel vague and distant pity for the said societies and cultures. Vague and distant because there are so many others whose troubles are not the result of their own Herculean efforts to fuck their own lives up. It’s not the shoe incident so much as the whole infantile, idiotic, violent, irresponsible, irrational mentality displayed time and time again by the Arab Street (as defined by Big Pharaoh). The reason why after so many years of peace with Egypt and Jordan, the average Egyptian or Jordanian doesn’t realize we’re actually at peace (i.e., Israel is still seen as an enemy state). The reason for the rabid, fanatical Arab antisemitism. The reason for Arab poverty, shoddy construction, lousy infrastructure and widespread ignorance. The reason for the perpetual Arab wars against everyone and each other (mostly each other). The reason why your average Syrian, Iraqi, Egyptian, Lebanese, Saudi or what have you would rather believe anything but the truth about why things are as shitty as they are.

    Sorry for dissing your parent culture, ya SM.

  34. Heya Adam,

    15. Craig, relax – a handful of fruits “attacking” an embassy is not an act of war. They’d have to have national uniforms on to qualify for that.

    That’s the same excuse the Islamic Republic used. I thought Europeans believed in higher standards for “civilized” countries? :P

    The British should at least round up the ringleaders and offer to send them to the US for trial. Whether we consider it an act of war or not, they committed crimes against the United States. It should be considered as a gesture of god will, and we shouldn’t have to ask. Then, we can magnanimously say “Don’t worry about it, British bastards. Just a few loose cannons. Could have happened anywhere.” See, that makes us look good, it makes the British look good… everyone is happy. But, when the British government turns a blind eye, it makes us think they support it when their nationals attack our embassies. That may make the British feel good, but it doesn’t make us feel very good at all. And when we don’t feel good about attacks on our embassies, we close them. Would the British feel good, when their only real ally doesn’t feel that it is safe to have embassies in their country?

    Remember the french sinking of Rainbow Warrior in a New Zealand harbour? American nuclear bombs in Greenland despite a danish ban on atomic weapons? Those incidents are much closer to acts of war than this…

    Adam, you need to read the Vienna Conventions :)

  35. Well, I’m not gonna dig up some humongous body of law and start from an end, so please enlighten me… Where does it say that the attack of autonomous individuals on the property of inhabitants of a country other than their own constitute war or even a hostile act between the two countries in question? On the other hand, one country ignoring the rules of another within the border of the latter – that could easily be considered a hostile act…

    Anyway… Of course I think that the brits should find and prosecute the persons guilty of attacking the US embassy. I see no reason, however, for an extradition, since the british citizens have violated international law, and the punishment therefore lies squarrely on the shoulders of Britain itself. In any case, I think you’re churning up a storm in a glass of water here… ;)

  36. The concept of Israel is beyond noble and worth defending!

    The means to which this concept was achieved goes beyond sheer evil!

    Everyone intellectualize and name call all you like, it still wont go away!

  37. Well, I’m not gonna dig up some humongous body of law and start from an end, so please enlighten me…

    Adam, you want to discuss international laws when it comes diplomatic missions, without ever having read the Vienna Conventions, which are in fact the international laws that govern diplomacy between nations?

    What would be the point? You simply don’t know what the law is. If I tried to explain it to you, you’d just be taking my word for it… or, dismissing what I say as invalid, even though you don’t really know if I what I say is correct or not. Again, what would be the point? It isn’t a matter of opinion, it is a matter of law.

    Where does it say that the attack of autonomous individuals on the property of inhabitants of a country other than their own constitute war or even a hostile act between the two countries in question?

    Well, besides everywhere? lol.

    It is the responsibility of the host country to ensure that diplomatic missions remain inviolate. It is their responsibility, and theirs alone. An attack on the personnel charged with guarding a diplomatic mission is an attack on the mission itself. An attack on a diplomatic mission is treated as an attack on the sending country. Therefor, any British nationals who attacked a US mission are committing an act of war against the United States. If they are acting of their own accord (and not with official sanction) that merely makes it an unlawful act of war. It doesn’t make it “not an act of war”, as you suggest.

    On the other hand, one country ignoring the rules of another within the border of the latter – that could easily be considered a hostile act…

    Diplomatic missions are considered to be “within the border” of the sending nation. Again, this is spelled out in the Vienna Conventions, which all members of the United Nations are signatories of. This is not US law we are talking about, it is international law and the laws of the UN. You know, the standards that Europeans think Israel and the US should live up to, even though most of the rest of the world doesn’t? Don’t Europeans have to live up to those standards, Adam?

    Anyway… Of course I think that the brits should find and prosecute the persons guilty of attacking the US embassy.

    They didn’t commit crimes against Britain. They committed crimes against the US. Since they are British nationals, they should be offered up to us first. If we decline, then the British can prosecute them for whatever British laws them may have violated. But, the offer should be made. As a gesture of good will. As I said. Otherwise, how can we (the US) expect any other “uncivilized” country to respect International Law, when our own allies in Europe do not?

    In any case, I think you’re churning up a storm in a glass of water here… ;)

    I agree! And I’m doing it deliberately. I’m trying to make a point. And I think the British Government should seriously consider making the very same point, in the very way that I suggest, to their own citizens. It’s about time somebody did.

    PS-I was wrong to say the US is Britain’s only ally. All English speaking countries are tested allies of the UK. But it would be a shame for some anti-American loudmouths in the UK to be allowed to start spoiling that. Britain doesn’t have so many alliances that have stood through the hard times that they can afford to lose any. What would it be like for the UK if they had to rely on somebody like the French to come to bat for them when things got ugly?

  38. Craig admitted to being a racist…

    Does anyone want to challenge me on that?

    If not, please proceed discussing the sanctity of life with this racist.

  39. Craig, if every attack by foreign nationals on public property was enough to constitute a war, every single country in the whole world would be at war. Britain is obviously obligated to protect foreign embassies within their national borders, and can subsequently be blamed for not living up to these obligations, but autonomous individuals will never be capable of commiting acts of war; only states and governments can do this, either by direct action of by severly and purposefully neglecting to live up to their responsibility.

    It seems you have a bit of contradiction in your comments as well:

    “This is not US law we are talking about, it is international law and the laws of the UN”

    and

    “They didn’t commit crimes against Britain. They committed crimes against the US. ”

    As you yourself noted, these are crimes against international law and as such they have commited crimes against BOTH Britain and the US. Since these crimes were carried out from british soil, it’s up to the british to prosecute, convict, and punish these individuals as per the international laws, which britain have agreed to live up to.

    I haven’t studied law, so these aren’t things I know beyond doubt; they’re just what I would call common sense, but to make sure, I’ll explain the situation to a few of my lawyer-friends, and get their opinion on the matter – if it turns out you are correct in your presentation of the legal matter, I’ll post it and stand corrected, if somewhat baffled…

  40. Craig, if every attack by foreign nationals on public property was enough to constitute a war, every single country in the whole world would be at war.

    It isn’t, Adam. This wasn’t “foreign nationals” on “public property”.

    It was the US consulate in Scotland and the security personnel there that were attacked.

    Either we’re on totally different pages, or you aren’t understanding what a diplomatic mission is. That’s why I suggested you read (or at least skim) the Vienna Conventions.

    Britain is obviously obligated to protect foreign embassies within their national borders, and can subsequently be blamed for not living up to these obligations, but…

    There is no “but”. Britain tried to protect that consulate (the injured were British police) and failed. The attack occurred anyway. The attack was on the United States – by law – and therefore we should have the opportunity to prosecute. If these were foreigners who snuck into the UK with malicious intent, it could be argued that both the UK and the US are victims. That doesn’t seem to be the case, so the only victim here is the US.

    autonomous individuals will never be capable of commiting acts of war; only states and governments can do this, either by direct action of by severly and purposefully neglecting to live up to their responsibility.

    That is simply untrue. Now I’m going to refer you to the Hague and the Geneva conventions :P

    Adam, at this point I feel obligate to point out that if the average European doesn’t know any more about international law than you do, they have no business accusing Israelis of doing so much as wiping their asses incorrectly.

    “This is not US law we are talking about, it is international law and the laws of the UN”

    and

    “They didn’t commit crimes against Britain. They committed crimes against the US. ”

    Where is the contradiction there? They violated the Vienna Conventions. The victim was the United States. The victim (that’s us, Americans) are entitled to seek redress.

    As you yourself noted, these are crimes against international law and as such they have commited crimes against BOTH Britain and the US.

    That’s not the case. The violation of international law involves only the US. Britain cannot be considered a victim, when British nationals attack an American diplomatic mission. You could arguably claim that, if these were foreigners. But again, that doesn’t seem to be the case, so it is moot.

    Since these crimes were carried out from british soil, it’s up to the british to prosecute, convict, and punish these individuals as per the international laws, which britain have agreed to live up to.

    Where are you getting that from? Got a link to a legal opinion? Or a precedent? Does it seem logical that Britain should have the sole right to prosecute (or not prosecute) when British nationals attack another country? The US and the UK have a very good relationship, and I’d be shocked if the US actually wanted to prosecute, but the perps should be offered up, An example has to be made. We Americans are fucking tired of having our embassies being attacked, and if the British are even going to allow it then we may as well just close every embassy we have. And how in the hell is the US supposed to even complain the next time one of our embassies in the third world gets attacked, when the damn consulate in Scotland got attacked by British nationals, and the British government did nothing about it?

    Bottom line… do Europeans comply with the international laws they claim to value so highly, or don’t they? It’s just that simple. This is an opportunity for the UK to show the world it doesn’t hold itself to a different standard than it expects from others. Instead, the story has vanished from the BBC.

    I haven’t studied law, so these aren’t things I know beyond doubt; they’re just what I would call common sense, but to make sure, I’ll explain the situation to a few of my lawyer-friends, and get their opinion on the matter – if it turns out you are correct in your presentation of the legal matter, I’ll post it and stand corrected, if somewhat baffled…

    OK :)

    Her is a link (in .PDF)

    http://untreaty.un.org/ilc/texts/instruments/english/conventions/9_1_1961.pdf

    Note how often the word “inviolable” is used. And also note the care with which they state the receiving (host) nation has no jurisdiction. There is no specified punishment for failing to live up to this convention. That is because it is a treaty between nations. That’s what makes violations of it, acts of war. It is up to each nation to decide how to deal with treaty violations.

  41. charlie 316 says:

    Craig – where does international law stand on one of your so called allies funding, supporting and giving comfort to terrorists acting against your country? Maybe we remember the money and support given by Americans and some democratic party politicians to the IRA. Money used to bomb London and other mainland cities and endless murder in Northern Ireland.

    On your argument you should be surrendering Edward Kennedy et al for trial in the UK or perhaps sending them off to our equivalent Gitmo, should we ever create one. But I’m sure that’s different, huh?

  42. Craig – where does international law stand on one of your so called allies funding, supporting and giving comfort to terrorists acting against your country? Maybe we remember the money and support given by Americans and some democratic party politicians to the IRA. Money used to bomb London and other mainland cities and endless murder in Northern Ireland.

    We call that terrorism, Charlie. If you feel you’ve got a case against specific Americans, then by all means file it. Be advised though, laws cannot be applied retroactively. We’ve tried to convict people of terrorism for things they did before the new wave of anti-terror legislation was passed, wuthout much success. Sami Al Arian, for instance.

    On your argument you should be surrendering Edward Kennedy et al for trial in the UK or perhaps sending them off to our equivalent Gitmo, should we ever create one. But I’m sure that’s different, huh?

    I don’t recall even using the word “terrorism” in the thread, before you jumped in. So I’m not sure what you are referring to?

    So, anyway, you’re British right? Is that the best you can do? Your country breaches a treaty with mine, and instead of trying to make it right you get self-righteous? lol. I’m shocked! Shocked, I tell you! Why so offended? At least nobody is accusing you falsely, right? Think about those poor Israelis and the way they have to try to defeat the constant lying Europeans do.

    Adam, by the way, the Vienna Conventions also govern the UN. Premises, UN Diplomats, UN Staff, etc. Don’t be dismissive of it. That treaty is the only reason the only reason half the people in the building don’t get hauled out in handcuffs by the NYPD tomorrow :)

    And, the US abides by it, very seriously. I personally think the British should too, since the British about the most condescending and self-righteous pricks on the planet, as evidenced by Charlie’s commentary. Walk it the way you talk it or STFU, Charlie. Nobody likes hypocrites. Especially when they have mash-potatoes-in-my-mouth accents that nobody can understand.

  43. Craig, I know that an embassy counts as part of a nations soil, and more precisely as part of said nations public apparatus. That doesn’t mean that an individual’s attack on an embassy constitutes an act of war between the nation being attacked and the nation to which this individual belong. A nation as a whole is not subject to the whims of every one of it’s citizens. Would you claim that a british national throwing a molotov cocktail at the US congress constituted an act of war as well? If you have a direct link to a text from the Geneva convention saying otherwise, you’re perfectly welcome to supply me with one- I’m not gonna go and read throughevery nook and crannyof a lenghthy legal writ that I have no educational background to understand properly and the words of which are the subject of discussion and debate among scholars around the world to this day – I’ll leave that to the professionals.

    “…that if the average European doesn’t know any more about international law than you do, they have no business accusing Israelis of doing so much as wiping their asses incorrectly.”

    Give me a break here – this is pure nonsense, and hopefully you know it. The average Joe anywhere in the western world has not read as much as one word in the Geneva convention or similar documents; this probably goes double for the average US citizen if it goes for the ditto European…! This doesn’t mean that we should all avoid topics that deals with human rights, wars, etc.

    “Where is the contradiction there? They violated the Vienna Conventions. The victim was the United States. The victim (that’s us, Americans) are entitled to seek redress.”

    The contradiction lies in your demand for a US trial even though you acknowledge that the laws broken are not american, but international. It’s up to the nation in which the illegal acts were commited to make sure that any transgressors are tried and punished.

    “Britain cannot be considered a victim, when British nationals attack an American diplomatic mission.”

    Why on earth not? Or more to the case; why can’t the british legal system take steps against british nationals breaking laws that Britain adhere to on british soil? Seems perfectly logical to me… If an american was murdered in London, his murderer would be tried and punished in England.

    “Does it seem logical that Britain should have the sole right to prosecute (or not prosecute) when British nationals attack another country?”

    No, but when it happens on british soil they do. It would be up to the british legal system to try and convict even german, swedish or mongolian violators of international law if the transgression happend on british soil, no matter who was the victim.

    “And how in the hell is the US supposed to even complain the next time one of our embassies in the third world gets attacked, when the damn consulate in Scotland got attacked by British nationals, and the British government did nothing about it?”

    I seriously doubt that the british government “did nothing about it”… Chances are the perpetrators did their deed at night and with faces covered. Even with a lengthy investigation, it’s doubtful that they will ever be found. Hey, the rest of us have our embassies and consulates attacked (forcibly, not just by grafitti artist as is the case in Scotland) around the world too, in case you didn’t notice…! Extradition of perpetrators is NOT the norm.

    I took the time to scim through your Vienna Convention link, and the only part with any relations to this particular case is article 22:

    1. The premises of the mission shall be inviolable. The agents of the receiving state may not enter them, except with the consent of the head of the mission.

    2. The recieving state is under special duty to take all appropriate steps to protect the premises of the mission against any intrusion or damage and to prevent any disturbance of the peace of the mission or impairment of its dignity.

    The first part refers exclusively to agents of state, ie. persons working for the host state.

    The second part, I feel, supports my own belief that it is the host state that is responsible for protecting foreign embassies and therefore must take action against any perpetrators on their soil, who would violate the international rules. I don’t see where it supports your argument…?

    I suppose if the criminal act had happened directly on embassy soil (as opposed to people throwing tomatoes or paint at the embassy walls from the street), the sending nation could demand extradition, but that would probably take a serious offence like murder, and in that case, US laws concerning death sentences would prohibit any european country from going through with the extradition.

  44. Dammit… my long ass comment didn’t make it?

    Charlie, feel free to Charge Ted Kennedy with whatever you want. I hate the bastard. But do it quick, because he’s dying. Also, keep in mind that you can only charge him with things that were crimes at the time, not with things that are crimes now.

    I forgot all the crap I typed in the other comment. Hmmm… well, anyway, Charlie, is this all you have to say when your country breaches a treaty with mine? Instead of trying to make it right, you go on the attack?

    And doesn’t it offend you at all, as a British national, when your countrymen commit acts of war against another country, during a fucking ANTI-WAR RALLY?

    From the BBC article:

    Pete Cannell, secretary of the Scottish Stop the War Coalition, said: “If we’d had a few more days it would’ve been twice the size.”

    Yeah, it’s all fun and games, until you’re sitting in a jail cell with Bubba…

    Send us that guy. Pete Cannell. He needs to meet Bubba. We’ll send him back to you a new man. A man who no longer believes the best way to stop one war is to start another. Also, a man who spends all his time hiding in a closet shivering and crying himself to sleep. But, sometimes it takes hard lessons before people learn the difference between right and wrong.

  45. Adam, you need to “skim” a lot more carefully! :)

    It isn’t that long. I’ll be back tomorrow, late at night here and I don’t have time to reply.

  46. Quick reply for now…

    I seriously doubt that the british government “did nothing about it”… Chances are the perpetrators did their deed at night and with faces covered. Even with a lengthy investigation, it’s doubtful that they will ever be found.

    Adam, did you read the article? This was an organized protest in which 4000 (police estimates) “anti-war” demonstrators attacked the US consulate in Edinburgh, injuring 3 British police officers who were guarding it.

    Hey, the rest of us have our embassies and consulates attacked (forcibly, not just by grafitti artist as is the case in Scotland) around the world too, in case you didn’t notice…! Extradition of perpetrators is NOT the norm.

    You’re right. The norm is for the host country to deny responsibility, and for the sending country to file a formal protest and/or close their embassy. Would you prefer that? That would look really good, wouldn’t it? lol. I can see it now… “US orders embassies in the United Kingdom closed due to security risks”…

    Anyway, Adam, the way I see it this was a chance for Britain to show that all those other incidents, in all those other countries, aren’t the proper way to handle breaches of the Vienna Conventions. That opportunity has been missed.

  47. Gotta stop commenting when I’m so sleepy! Forgot to finish that last one:

    Extradition of perpetrators is NOT the norm.

    On the point of jurisdiction… and disregarding laws and traditions… does it make sense to you that a nation should be in charge of policing (or not policing) its own treaty violations? What would be the point of even having treaties, if every country could just give themselves a pass on their violations? That’s getting into “Monty Python” territory…

  48. Craig, too bad witht he comment – this site has been a little slow since last night (danish time); I lost a long comment 12 hours ago as well… Pain in the ass!

    As for your link, feel free to point out what I missed.

    Concerning the article, I’t seems we’re not talkning about the same story… I found a newsarticle that mentioned grafitti paint during the night – didn’t see your link before now…! :D

    Anyways, this iss even more “up my alley” – these protesters were all “…outside the American consulate where the traditional way of displaying discord with what is happening in the Middle East is to take their shoes off and throw them on to the ground.” Clearly on british soil, and besides most people just throwing their shoes to the ground, the only one’s who were actually attacked…

    “”Unfortunately a number of these persons, about 60, threw heavy clogs, ski-boots and wooden poles at the police officers.”"

    …were british policemen!

    You also lamented the lack of british reaction earlier…

    “He said a criminal investigation had been launched into the incident.”

    There you have it.

  49. “What would be the point of even having treaties, if every country could just give themselves a pass on their violations?”

    It’s not “it’s own treaty violations”… It’s the violations of people under the jurisdiction of each country, and there’s nothing abnormal in that – it happens every day in every courtroom.

  50. Adam, this is not a domestic criminal case. It is an international incident between the UK and the US. You are arguing that the UK should have the sole right to determine the appropriate way to handle it’s own treaty violations. I don’t even know what to say to that. I don’t know what to say about teh way you are interpreting the Vienna Conventions, either.

    Do you realize these diplomatic conventions are the only thing that prevents the NYPD from hauling half the membership of the UN away in handcuffs?

    I guess further discussion on this is pointless… its just yet another example of European hypocrisy. These things add up. We here the things that you say about us. We read your media. I think some of the political leadership of the EU might want to fly into Los Angeles some time and drive around Southern California for the weekend, and think about whether they really want to keep taking their alliances with the US for granted. But that’s just me.

  51. The average Joe anywhere in the western world has not read as much as one word in the Geneva convention or similar documents; this probably goes double for the average US citizen if it goes for the ditto European…! This doesn’t mean that we should all avoid topics that deals with human rights, wars, etc.

    But, of course it does mean exactly that, Adam. Id somebody doesn’t even know what international laws are, or what human rights are, then what business to they have holding up a blowhorn and condemning somebody for violating international law or stepping on human rights?

    If somebody asked Annie Lennox to explain what she meant in that rant of hers a week or two ago, could she? I think not. I bet she couldn’t even define some of the words she was using. It’s very sad when the self-appointed champions of international law, don’t know what they are talking about. It also makes a lie of the claim that Western Europeans only bash Israel and the US because they expect “higher standards” from Israel and the US. Israel and the US already meet higher standards than Western Europeans do, and if Western Europeans educated themselves they would know that. The self-righteous “anti” bullshit is just naked aggression, based on emotion… that emotion being hatred. That’s the way I read it, and nothing that’s been said in this thread convinces me I should re-visit the conclusions I have come to about Europe. The European “street” really isn’t all that different from the Arab “street”. Keep your ignorant street people out of our face. There’s gonna be a price to pay if you don’t.

  52. Craig:

    “You are arguing that the UK should have the sole right to determine the appropriate way to handle it’s own treaty violations”

    No, I’m arguing that Britain must handle the matter according to international law, and that the responsibility falls on their shoulder, since the breach happened within their borders. And I repeat – it is not “it’s” treaty violations; it’s violations performed by private individuals not representing any country at all. Huge difference! You, on the other hand, are arguing that the responsibility of judging and punishing the perpetrators should ba handed over to the victim?!?! Now, THAT’S not right! You say my view is european hypocrasy; I say your view is american self-rightousness. You fail utterly to see even try to it any other way than your own. The fact that the victims of this demonstrations you link to were solely british just makes your claims even more ridiculous.

    And just to top it off, I got this response from a lawyer I asked about the question… translation as close to direct as I could get it:

    “A civil attack on an embassy is as such not an act of war – these solely happen between states.

    Having said that, every state has a duty to make sure that other countries’ embassies within their borders are safe and that their personel can stay in and move about safely within it’s host nation. If it fails to live up to this, it will be in breach of the Vienna convention and a series of related conventions.

    A civil attack on an embassy must be judged according to the law of the land in which the attack took place; that is: the legal relationship is between the state and it’s citizen.”

    Basically, the attack in question has nothing to do with the Vienna convention in so far as it is not a matter between two states. If, however, american property or personel had been molested, Britain would be obliged by the Vienna convention to take action, which, as the link mentions, it has.

    “But, of course it does mean exactly that, Adam”

    If you’re serious here, then YOU have no business discussing anything on this blog either, as per your ignorance shown above. I happen to disagree with you, and that’s my take on the matter.

    “Israel and the US already meet higher standards than Western Europeans do”

    Complete nonsense – are you drunk or something?

    “Keep your ignorant street people out of our face. There’s gonna be a price to pay if you don’t.”

    Most definately drunk… That, or a complete psycho. You just managed to live up to every prejudice the rest of us might have about americans in one bloody paragraph, man!

    I’m through discussing with you.

  53. charlie 316 says:

    Oh dear I go back into the real world for a few days and come back to all this.

    Too much testosterone been expended above, but I do have one small question about #52. Just what would we (or our evil politicians) be expected to learn by popping into LA for the weekend? Been there a few times myself and stayed longer than just a weekend. The weather is pretty good, but the traffic is awful. There are better places in Southern California, such as San Diego, where the people are less freaky, traffic is easier and the weather is even better than LA.

    So what was the point? If you want to change people’s minds about America, I am not sure that that a weekend in Southern California would do it, especially if you never got away from LA. I’d take your visiting Europeans to the mid West. Chicago always gives me more positive vibes about the USA, but that’s just me.