The Ghost City of Cyprus

There are quite a few odd corners of this great world of ours, filled with all sorts of strange sights. Michael J. Totten has had the great fortune of seeing quite a few of those sites, many of which lie under the control of tyrranical regimes. His previous photo essay from his trip to Libya gives a rare Western glimpse into that dictatorship, including some very compelling shots of the formerly Berber city of Ghadames, whose residents were forceably removed by Ghaddafi.
His recent trip to Cyprus produced some extremely eerie pictures of Varosha, the “ghost city of Cyprus”. Turkish forces seized the city when they invaded Cyprus in 1974 and then sealed it off. It has been deserted for the past 30 years and the shots Totten managed to snag before being run off by the Turkish military are simultaneously intriguing and unsettling. Do yourself a favor and check out both of those photo essays.

I Take Kristol’s Meaning, But Have To Disagree

I was listening to Bill Kristol on Fresh Air last night, and during the course of Terry Gross’ interview of Kristol, he said something to the effect of “We want to get Iraq to a place where it’s not a threat to its neighbors”. Now, I know what he was trying to say, but I have to disagree. We manifestly do want Iraq to be a “danger” to its neighbors. That’s the whole point of this “neo-con crusade” in the first place, isn’t it?
We want Iran to fear Iraq, as we want Syria, the House of Saud and, to a lesser extend, Jordan and Turkey to fear Iraq. A democratic Iraq. An Iraq with freedom of the press, with freedom of speech, with minority protections. The levels of support that the first three nations are throwing behind the “insurgency” show just how much fear those regimes already have of a free Iraq, while Jordan and Turkey are terrified of what an empowered, independent Kurdish Iraqi population will mean inside their borders.
That was the overarching goal of this whole invasion, right?