I headed down the hill last night, in search of the rising super big full moon, but turned back home when it became clear that the clouds were solid all the way to the horizon. I’d just stepped out of my car when I saw it pop out, bold yellow from a mass of dark at the end of my driveway, remaining visible long enough to remind me I don’t need to go looking for anything.
Awoke this morning to the sound of Spring roaring in like a lion among the trees, the sky a mix of sullen gray and filtered gold, the air perfumed with spider lilies, honohono, gardenia, angels trumpet, the landscape impossibly lushly green, even in places that are usually brown and dry. Everything seems so very alive.
Meanwhile, America and its allies celebrated the season of rebirth by starting another war. But while it’s apparent that the weaponry has done its job — delivering death and destruction — it’s not so clear the wagers are in agreement about either the means or the ends:
U.S. and European military officials said the assault was only the first wave in the international operation in Libya. But already there were signs of differences over the goals. France took a more assertive stance, suggesting the allies' intervention must ultimately lead to Gadhafi's downfall. The U.S. military appeared more wary of overtly taking a side and getting pulled deeper into Libya's conflict, with the top American U.S. officer saying Gadhafi's ouster wasn't necessarily the goal.
Libya's claims of civilians among the dead from the strikes also appeared to make Arab countries nervous, after the Arab League took the unprecedented step of calling for a no-fly zone. On Sunday, Arab League chief Amr Moussa criticized the allied strikes, saying they went beyond what the Arab body had supported.
"What happened differs from the no-fly zone objectives," Moussa told reporters in Cairo. "What we want is civilians' protection not shelling more civilians."
Oh, boy, here we go again, killing people to protect them. It's a good time to listen to Michael Franti.
I find it fascinating that the Libyan fighters opposing Gadhafi are labeled “rebels,” whereas the Afghanistan fighters opposing America are called “insurgents” and “terrorists.” But they’re all doing the same thing: waging armed revolution. See how government, with the help of mass media, subtly manipulates your thoughts and perceptions?
It’s not much different than all the nuanced language being used to describe the spreading radioactive contamination of food in Japan, with the New York Times reporting officials there saying things like even thought they’ve detected significantly elevated levels of iodine 131 and cesium 137, “they posed no immediate health risks.” Yes, because it takes time for cancer to form.
In truth, as the Wall Street Journal reports, they don’t really know how serious the problem is:
"Radiation is invisible, so the only way to determine the safety of food products is to conduct scientific tests," said Norikazu Suzuki, an agricultural ministry official.
But another major hurdle is the fact that there aren't enough research facilities in Japan that can conduct highly accurate radioactivity tests on food.
Still, it's the first day of Spring, the season of new life, fresh starts, hope, and its significance has been noted by civilizations from ancient times, including Hawaiians, who built the spectacular Hapaiali'i Heiau on Hawaii Island back in the 1400s. At the vernal equinox, the sun sets directly along the centerline of the temple.
Pretty darn cool.