On the Fear of Matches


On the Fear of Matches


The Arabs may have the oil, but we have the matches — reputedly said by Ariel Sharon


Historians love to tell people how complicated history really is. You think that the Crusades were all about religion? Historians will tell you all about the social and economic factors that were involved. Think that the American Revolution was all about taxation without representation? Historians will tell you all about how Britain’s desire to maintain friendly relations with the Indian tribes angered American land speculators and interfered with the colonies desire to expand.

But the ability to look beyond the obvious answers seems to desert the historians when it comes to time periods that they personally lived through. Then the reasons stated by the actors involved seem to become the only reasons that historians can see. Pat answers that are obvious are the only ones that they have to offer. Nowhere is this failure of historical technique more evident than the history of America’s relations with Israel.

On the face of it, there are many different views and ideas about the history of American’s relations with Israel. But on closer inspection they all hold to the same basic ideas. Some people argue that American’s close relationship with Israel is a good thing for America because Israel provides a back door way of accomplishing American goals. Other people say that American closeness to Israel is bad because it provides a means for America to oppress people. Some say American support for Israel reveals a cultural arrogance. Others say that by supporting Israel America is upholding its values. And one could go on and on. On both sides of the issue people are saying the same thing about why America is supporting Israel. The only real disagreement is about whether this close relationship is good thing or not.

This consensus on why America is supporting Israel has problems. It does not help us understand why America’s relationship with Israel under went a dramatic change in the early 70′s. The consensus does not account for the fact that the US was not always militarily supportive of Israel. It does not explain why the United States refused to sell Israel weapons until the early sixties. Even then sales were limited. In fact, the more you look into it, the more you see that early in Israel’s history, America was far from being Israel’s best friend.

When Israel was first created by UN mandate, the US did not lift a finger to save her from combined Arab attack. During the 1956 Sinai War America worked against Israeli interests. Right before the 1967 war the Syrians were shelling northern Israel and Egypt was blockading Israeli ports as well as massing troops on the border. Israel begged America to intercede. Even though America had guaranteed the freedom of Israeli shipping as part of the deal that ended the Sinai War, the Johnson administration refused to help. What’s more the Johnson administration warned Israel not to take any military action to resolve the situation.

Hard as it is to believe, the Johnson administration was more favorably inclined towards Israel than previous administrations. After all, he was the first President to actually sell some major US weapon systems to Israel. But it is hard to imagine any president from either political party saying the type of things that Johnson told Israel today.

It was not until the Yom Kippur war that the American relationship with Israel took on its present form. As the pro Israeli site Palestine Facts notes..

As a direct result of the Yom Kippur War, the United States quadrupled its foreign aid to Israel, and replaced France as Israel’s largest arms supplier. The doctrine of maintaining Israel’s “qualitative edge” over its neighbors was born in the war’s aftermath.

In fact, most of the aid that the US has given to Israel started around the time of the Yom Kippur war. As one anti-Israeli magazine, The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs points out

U.S. government officials argue that this money is necessary for “moral” reasons–some even say that Israel is a “democracy battling for its
very survival.” If that were the real reason, however, aid should have been highest during Israel’s early years, and would have declined as Israel grew stronger. Yet “the pattern…has been just the opposite.” According to Zunes, “99 percent of all U.S. aid to Israel took place after the June 1967 war, when Israel found itself more powerful than any combination of Arab armies….”

Prior to the Yom Kippur war, no American Administration regardless of political affiliation wanted to provide Israel with a lot of advanced American weapons. After Yom Kippur war, every American Administration strove to make sure that Israel had a qualitative edge over its neighbors. In practice this meant giving Israel any weapon system they wanted. At roughly the same time as the Yom Kippur war, buckets of American money started pouring into Israel. Before the Yom Kippur war broke out, America only used its veto in the United Nations once to block an anti-Israeli resolution and that was in 1972. After the Yom Kippur, America used its veto on Israel’s behalf 33 times.

So why is the Yom Kippur war such a defining moment in US/Israeli relations? That is the question for which the pro-Israel and anti-Israel camps have no answer. If America supports Israel because of shared values how come we did not support Israel from the very beginning? If we support Israel because of the strength of the pro-Israel lobby why did they suddenly become so strong right around the time of the Yom Kippur war? For every reason you can give to explain American support for Israel, the same question can be asked. Why did it start at the Yom Kippur war?

The answer is brutally simple. By the time of the Yom Kippur war an Israeli defeat would mean nuclear war. Warner D. Farr, LTC, U.S Army explains how the 1973 war almost went nuclear in his paper The Third Temple’s Holy of Holies: Israel’s Nuclear Weapons…..

On the afternoon of 6 October 1973, Egypt and Syria attacked Israel in a coordinated surprise attack, beginning the Yom Kippur War. Caught with only regular forces on duty, augmented by reservists with a low readiness level, Israeli front lines crumbled. By early afternoon on 7 October, no effective forces were in the southern Golan Heights and Syrian forces had reached the edge of the plateau, overlooking the Jordan River. This crisis brought Israel to its second nuclear alert.

Defense Minister Moshe Dayan, obviously not at his best at a press briefing, was, according to Time magazine, rattled enough to later tell the prime minister that “this is the end of the third temple,” referring to an impending collapse of the state of Israel. “Temple” was also the code word for nuclear weapons. Prime Minister Golda Meir and her “kitchen cabinet” made the decision on the night of 8 October. The Israelis assembled 13 twenty-kiloton atomic bombs. The number and in fact the entire story was later leaked by the Israelis as a great psychological warfare tool. Although most probably plutonium devices, one source reports they were enriched uranium bombs. The Jericho missiles at Hirbat Zachariah and the nuclear strike F-4s at Tel Nof were armed and prepared for action against Syrian and Egyptian targets. They also targeted Damascus with nuclear capable long-range artillery although it is not certain they had nuclear artillery shells.[62]

U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger was notified of the alert several hours later on the morning of 9 October. The U.S. decided to open an aerial resupply pipeline to Israel, and Israeli aircraft began picking up supplies that day. Although stockpile depletion remained a concern, the military situation stabilized on October 8th and 9th as Israeli reserves poured into the battle and averted disaster. Well before significant American resupply had reached Israeli forces, the Israelis counterattacked and turned the tide on both fronts.

It is a widely known fact that Israel had nuclear weapons by the time of the Yom Kippur war. It is also widely known that Israel contemplated using them at the most critical point of the Yom Kippur war. But these facts are ignored by the pro- and anti-Israeli debaters. Both camps argue as if the factors affecting America’s policy toward Israel stayed the same throughout Israel’s history, regardless of Israel’s nuclear status. This has caused the arguments over American support for Israel to become divorced from reality. How could any American president not take into account nuclear weapons? And how could they fail to have affected US policy?

Israeli nuclear power has considerably complicated American calculations about how much support to give to Israel. Before Israel became a nuclear power, American support for Israel was a matter of sentiment, and it always took a back seat to core American interests. After Israel acquired nuclear weapons, the question of support for Israel became one with the question of how to prevent nuclear war. Especially since Israel pursued and obtained the ability to threaten the Soviet Union directly.

Once you take into account the background effect of those nuclear weapons, a lot of things make more sense. The urgency with which America tried to insure that Israel could win the Yom Kippur war conventionally had something to do with the fact that the Israelis were about to go nuclear. The fear that Israel would resort to its atomic weapons seems to me to go a long way to explaining why all administrations, regardless of party, have maintained a policy of keeping Israel far more powerful than its neighbors ever since the Yom Kippur war. It is true that America military aid started to climb a couple of years before the Yom Kippur war. But this rise mirrors the increasing capabilities of Israel’s nuclear weapons program, which made the first bombs before the Yom Kippur war got started.

Not that America ever wanted Israel to have nuclear weapons. They even tried to exert some behind-the-scenes pressure to derail the program. But the United States has never had much influence over France. And it was France that gave Israel everything that it needed to have a successful nuclear weapons program. France also helped Israel develop a ballistic missile suitable for use with atomic weapons. Furthermore, some people in the United States worked to frustrate official US policy regarding Israel’s nuclear program. All of this meant that Israel made rapid progress in its pursuit of nuclear weapons in spite of official US opposition. By the time of the Yom Kippur war, Israel was an established nuclear power.

Once Israel became a nuclear power there was no way of forcing them to give up their atomic weapons short of a nuclear strike. Even if an American president had the political will to try to use economic pressures to force Israel to get rid of the nuclear weapons, a desperate Israel could always threaten to nuke Arab oil fields to force the US to drop the economic pressure. I do not mean to say that Israel ever threatened to do such thing. But the mere fact that they theoretically could do such a thing makes an important point. No matter how small the country is, nuclear weapons make you a world power. This is especially true if you happen to be right next to most of the world’s supply of oil.

Highlighting Israel’s status as a power is the fact that Israel gained the ability to seriously threaten the Soviets. Theoretically, Israel could have nuked Moscow as early as the Yom Kippur war, provided that its pilots could get through Russian air defenses and they did not balk at making a one way trip. By the 1980′s the one way trip problem became unnecessary as Israel seems to have targeted Russia with ballistic missiles. That accounts for the fact that Russia stop threatening to intervene militarily against Israel like it did in the 50′s and 60′s.

Given the potential consequences of Israel’s nuclear weapons and the fact that the genie could not be put back in the bottle, how was America to ensure that Israel never used their nuclear weapons? America seems to have decided that the answer is to make Israel feel as secure as possible. Hence the fact that since Yom Kippur America has made sure that Israel’s conventional arms are far more powerful than its neighbors. The theory behind this military aid is the hope that if the Israelis can easily defeat their opponents with conventional weapons their finger will stay away from that little red button. Hence the fact that America has used it veto 33 times on Israel’s behalf since Israel acquired nuclear weapons. America never used its veto to support Israel before Israel acquired nuclear weapons. Hence the fact that America gives aid to Egypt in exchange for keeping the peace with Israel. Back in the good old days this would have been called tribute.

This policy has not been 100% successful at eliminating nuclear scares. Israel went on a nuclear alert during the First Gulf War as the result of the Iraqi scuds that were being fired at it. Saddam Hussein seems to have calculated that as long as he did not put chemical or biological weapons on his missiles, Israel would not nuke Baghdad. People all over the world should be grateful that calculation was more accurate than his calculations that it would be easy to take Iran’s oil fields, America would not intervene to take back Kuwait, or that George W. Bush was not really determined to remove him from power. But it does not seem to have sunk into people’s consciousness how close the First Gulf War came to going nuclear.

Part of the reason for this lack of understanding is that many people in the western world seem to think that America has a veto over what Israel does. It you believe that then it is no surprise that Israel did not nuke Baghdad, but that idea is hardly credible. If America had a veto over what Israel does, Israel would never have had a nuclear program to begin with. A more sophisticated variant of this idea is that Israel went on nuclear alert just to make America take seriously its concerns about the scuds.

What both of these ideas have in common is the refusal to take Israel seriously as an independent nuclear power. If the Iraqi scuds had been hitting France do people really think that the French would not have gone on nuclear alert? If they had been able to hit the United States, wouldn’t the US have put its nuclear weapons on alert? And if the French or the Americans had felt that their nation was in serious danger, they would have fired. Israel is no different then any other nuclear power.

What is different about Israel is that people tend to discount it as a nuclear power and don’t seem to devote much thought to the problems that their weapons pose. During the cold war, the best way to prevent a nuclear exchange between the US and Russia was widely debated. Arguably this debate helped American avoid nuclear war as it put into practices ideas put forwarded by various competing ideological camps. No similar debate is occurring over how to prevent a nuclear war in the Middle East. At best you hear the anti-Israel crowd talking about how Israel’s nuclear weapons destabilize the Middle East and you hear the pro-Israel crowd talking about how all Israel’s enemies should be shaking in their boots because Israel has got the bomb.

This type is of talk is not very productive. Israel’s bomb may be contributing to instability in the Middle East, but there is no realistic chance that they will ever give it up. And as happy as the pro-Israeli crowd may be at the idea that Israel has the bomb, they have to realize that a situation where Israel feels compelled to use the bomb would be a catastrophe. But the type of platitudes that the pro- and anti-Israel sides of debate throw around illuminate nothing. At the same time they are debating whether it is morally acceptable for Israel to have the bomb, the risk of nuclear war in the Middle East has been increasing.

It is time for people to stop debating the ups and downs of something that has already occurred and cannot be reversed. People should instead start talking about the problems that can arise in the future as a result of Israel’s nuclear weapons. One thing that should concern the pro-Israel camp and the anti-Israel camp is Israel’s lack of second strike capability.

It has been known for a long time that Israel has no second strike capability. Being a small country, it does not have the ability to disperse its nuclear weapons as most nuclear nations do. As best as anyone can tell, most of Israel’s nuclear weapons are concentrated in one area. And that area is vulnerable to a nuclear strike by even a relatively crude atomic weapon. As Jane’s Intelligence Review says….

Although the Soviet threat is gone, the missile base remains vulnerable to a nuclear-tipped ballistic missile such as the Chinese M-9, which has a CEP of 300 m – accurate enough to threaten the base. Although accuracy and the type of nuclear explosion would determine the extent of the damage, a quick review of the effects of a nuclear blast raise serious questions about Zachariah’s ability to survive a Third World-produced nuclear missile. If a missile containing a crude, 20 kiloton nuclear warhead detonated 2,200 m above and 1,000 m away from its intended target within Zachariah, the surface target would still sustain severe damage from heat, radiation, and blast effects. Two kilometres from ground zero, the shock wave (at 34.5 KPa) would be powerful enough to destroy unreinforced buildings and unprotected TELs, while the thermal radiation (10 calories/cm2) would be enough to ignite combustible materials. If the base were hit with missiles having the accuracy of the M-9, even reinforced underground caves would be seriously damaged by a ground burst.

The vulnerability of Israel’s nuclear arsenal to a first strike from someone else forces them to be extremely trigger happy when it comes to perceived nuclear threats. If Israel waits around to see if a threat is real or not, it may no longer have a nuclear arsenal left to respond with. Once you understand this, you begin to see why Israel has been so adamant that it will not tolerate a nuclear armed Iran.

If Iran became a nuclear power it could very easily take out Israel’s nuclear arsenal with a first strike. Conversely, Israel could also deprive Iran of its nuclear weapons if it struck first. Compensating for fact that Iran has more land in which to hide the missiles would be the greater size and technical sophistication of Israel’s nuclear arsenal. For both countries to be able to eliminate the threat that the other posed if they struck first would be extremely dangerous. It would put enormous pressure on both countries to be the first to strike.

This is the nightmare that western powers are trying to prevent with their attempts to pressure Iran into dropping their nuclear program. But even if they succeed in preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power, it does not solve the underlying problem. What if Pakistan should become extremely hostile to Israel due to a change in government? What if Saud
i Arabia should purchase nuclear weapons from North Korea or Pakistan?

The time when America could give Israel a sense of security just by selling it advanced weapons is gone. So what is the United States going to do now to try to minimize the chance that Israel will use their nuclear weapons?

An Apology


An Apology

To hold a pen is to be at war
— Voltaire


I pity the insane. I know that those who smash walls and scream inarticulately are in desperate battle. I know that those who stare at the wall and drool have been captured and can not escape. I do not call “crazy” those who fight to be free. I do not call “deluded” those who know that they are enslaved. I have heard the heart-rending stories of those who know they are not in control of their own bodies. They knock their heads against their chairs because it is the only part of their bodies that they control. They smash up their apartments because they know of no other way to fight the voices in their heads. They trembled at the thought of them coming back. If they were truly deluded they would not be unhappy, for they would think that they understood. If they were truly crazy, they would not struggle to hold onto their souls. They know that they are not in control. That is why they are so angry, so sad, and so full of fear. Crazy acts are their only chance to demonstrate some kind of control.

My crazy act is this blog. It is my attempt to assert control against ethereal voices. My battle might not be as desperate as those poor souls who are medically insane, but it is a struggle all the same. I struggle to rule an unruly domain that is populated with a multitude of voices. These voices do not seek to assert control over my body. They only wish to speak with out ceasing, to debate everything, and to ask all questions. They wish to make a democracy out of what should be monarchy. They assert equality when they are nothing. They refuse to be ruled.

For most of my life, I had no problems with these voices. They were my companions as I explored the world that I was born with. An internal world that could keep me entertained for hours with no need of action or movement. Sitting still was not the struggle that it is for so many who are young, though paying attention often was. When I was a boy, I rarely minded going to bed. Bedtime did not signal the end of the fun as it did for so many other kids. My own little world would keep me entertained to all hours of the night. No matter what time I was sent to bed, I would still get up late or else be tired beyond reason.

The internal world has such a hold on me that most of the milestones in my life have been internal events. On the outside, my life was notable primarily for its uneventful nature and the lack of initiative that I displayed. But my internal world was always exciting, constantly being shaped by new ideas. A transcript of a debate between Attlee and Churchill on trade changed my life more than getting my first job did. Reading Solzhenitsyn’s works for the first time excited me more than my first car. These were the type of things that shaped me. It was the exposure to ideas like these that made the world that I live in.

The phantoms that trouble me now are an integral part of this inner world. They listened to my lectures, debated my views, and asked questions that needed to be asked. Because of the constant debate with my phantoms, all my ideas became woven into a coherent whole. Every new idea that I was exposed to would shift the debate across the whole spectrum of my ideas as my phantoms and I tussled over the implications of the new idea. Even a slightly quirky interpretation of a common idea would provide me with weeks of amusement as I dealt with it in my internal world. Every other idea that I held might have to be modified because one idea was modified. Everything I was given, I tested. What I accepted, I often changed.

But a world that is full of promise for the youth can become a prison for the adult. The older I got, the harder it became for me to find new ideas and new thoughts to challenge my invisible phantoms and me. I looked into subjects that I had no previous knowledge of and saw only patterns that I had already seen. Did I just reach the limits of my ability to comprehend? Or did that common affliction of the elderly, the inability to see the world any way than they have always seen it, take hold of me? I still ran through the old debates and lectures and I still read some new stuff. But it was like pacing in a cell; it brought nothing but the same scenery. I still do it only because there is nothing else to do.

The real world still has no attraction for me. That is to say, if you define the real world as the social world, than I am not interested. Having been exposed to the whole spectrum of humanity I have found that real people have less interesting things to say than dogs, imaginary friends, and two year olds. People go out of their way to avoid thinking. They need alcohol to enable them to enjoy the banality of their own company. TV’s are necessary lest they start to think while sitting on a couch or laying in bed. Even these standbys are not be sufficient for they run to and fro frantically, making time for everything but sleep. This has the double benefit of keeping them from having any still time in which thoughts might occur and guaranteeing that, if by some chance their life should happen to pause, they will fall asleep rather than think.

Some snobs would have you believe that this is only true of those who are not intellectuals. I use to believe this myself. But I have found that the distinction between the educated and the less educated is simply a matter of how much predigested thought has been memorized. Even scientists have little in the way of original thought. They are like monkeys trying to write like Shakespeare, save for the fact that they have rules and formulas to guide them. Very few scientists actually look at things in a new way or come up with new approaches to solving problems. Instead they use methods that they memorized to solve problems that were identified for them by others.

I know that not all of humanity is as deplorable as I have described. I know of some people who are more interesting than imaginary creations. Interesting because their ideas are not simply warmed-over versions of someone else’s thought, and their lives not lived according to templates they received without question. They actually think for themselves and their ideas are as individualistic as they are. Sometimes they are recognized for what they have done, and their ideas get memorized and regurgitated by those who consider themselves educated. But the fact that their ideas have been used as crutches does not take away from the fact that they thought for themselves. I owe all of these entertaining few a great debt. They did much to keep my own little internal world going.

Most of them are dead now and have said all that they are going to say. Those few who are still alive have expressed their thoughts on the subjects that they chose to talk about. But, like me, they seem to have their own prisons. I can trace out the boundaries that they do not leave, however original they might be inside those boundaries. Having absorbed their thought, they become for me like all other people, easily replaceable by my phantoms.

Save for one difference. I often wonder how they would respond to my observations on their thoughts. I wonder how they would react to how I twist their ideas. I wonder how they would respond to criticism based on fields of thought that they don’t seem to have addressed. A phantom with no soul can easily argue any orthodoxy. It can easily speak as intelligently as those who vomit out the thoughts of others without digesting them. But phantoms can say nothing about how people who think their own thoughts will respond to something new. At best, the phantoms can take the thoughts of those who hoe their own row and play with them.

This sufficed for me as long as my phantoms and I could keep finding new sources of original thought. But when I had run out of what I could find I began to wish that they would give more. Maybe there is nothing more for them to give. Maybe the production is limited and we are all doomed by our own limitations to stay within predetermined boundaries. But it was thanks to the original thoughts of others that my boundaries are as wide as they are. It was interacting with their thoughts that made me what I am. They in turn did not build their ideas out of nothing. They interacted with those who came before them. I can only hope that interaction with those who think can at least stretch the boundaries that confine us. I can only hope that they can at least test us in ways that we are unable to test ourselves. I can only hope that by doing this we can see things that we were unable to see before.

But such a hope is vain unless you can see how this interaction can be accomplished. In order to interact with others you must speak as well as listen. You must write as well as read. I am like the prisoner who taps messages into the walls of his prison not knowing if there is anyone on the other side who can understand or is willing to understand. I want to write not because I had any particular hope for what I might accomplish by writing, but because I have no other hope to expand my boundaries. My phantoms have turned from friends into jailers, however, and it disturbs them to have me tapping on the walls.

They demanded that I play by the rules that we had always played by. Ideas that we had debated and played around with for weeks, months, and even years, they would not see reduced to a page or even ten pages. Everything I tried to write became an expression, not of myself, but of a whole host of phantoms. To shut them down was to shut my self out my internal world. To shut my self out my internal world was to render myself unable to say anything. But to go back into the internal world was to be forced to contend with the phantoms. The interconnectedness of my ideas, and the cross indexing that had been established by my phantoms and I, meant that there was nothing I could say that would not drag in all of them. Having grown up with me, my phantoms can see no reason for me to be the only one that speaks, and I cannot ignore my phantoms any more than most people can ignore their fellow man.

I have often tried to rule my phantoms, but with little success. In one of my many battles with my phantoms, I tried to write out a short observation on why the Harry Potter series was so popular. I wanted to reference my understanding of the purpose of fantastic creatures in fantasy (on a psychological and symbolical level). But my phantoms would not allow me to do that do that with out referring to our arguments over J.R. Tolkien’s understanding of the purpose of myth. This lead us back into the old arguments into whether fiction itself had any insight into truth that could not be better expressed in non-fiction. That lead me to re-read The Runner for the umpteenth time, to revisit the argument about whether it was even possible to expresses what Voigt was saying in that book in any form other than symbolic (i.e. fictional). That led me on to number of other ideas and old arguments. By and by I came to realize that I was not in Kansas anymore, and that it was hopeless for me to try to finish what I was originally trying to write. These things were entertaining when I was going over new ground. But just going over old internal arguments again and again has gotten really old.

A similar story happened most times that I tried to write. I despaired of writing. But my boredom would not go away. Instead, it began to increase so much that not writing was no longer an option. In desperation, I turned to the last refuge of the pathetic. I started a blog.

Blogs are all about bad writing by pathetic people with places for even more pathetic people to comment. With the permission to be pathetic and to be virtually impossible to understand, I hoped that I could at least force my phantoms to let me finish something. I figured that controlled dissent is better than unrestrained rioting, so I gave leave for one of the phantoms to express dissent per post. But even on a blog without any pretense at quality and bending over backward to make my phantoms happy, it has been quite a battle. In each of my posts, many battles are being fought with a host of phantoms on subjects that go far beyond the goal of my post. I shadow box all the way to the finish line and it shows.

One kind reader sent me a link to a whole bunch of resources to help me become a better writer. But my goal for this blog is simply to put down my phantoms long enough to declare myself done with a piece of writing. I would just like to get in the habit of finishing a written work and declaring myself done with it. Even most bad writers can do this, so it seems like a much more reasonable goal than that of becoming a good writer. But I despair of learning to accomplish even this modest goal.

I guess the fact that I have put up three posts can be construed as a success. But it is a discouraging sort of success. Writing Pondering the Battle of Bicocca was hard. That was only to be expected. But I was discouraged to find that finishing the posts only got harder as I went along. I really did not finish The Dangers Of Historical Symbolism in even the loosest sense of the word. I threw it out of the door because I could feel myself losing control of it. I came too close to ideas that were important to me, and the phantoms really went haywire. I probably would not have even put it up if it was not such an important part of the trilogy. But it was only an important part because I can’t seem to help playing to my phantoms. No one else would have noticed that it was a necessary part of the trilogy.

The sour taste left by my last post has only increased my trepidation as I review in my mind the next trilogy. It should be easier but I can already hear the phantoms arguing for change and I have not even started writing yet. But the foolish part of me still hopes to arrive at the point where ending a post is easy. And all that I need to work on is becoming a good writer.