Monday, December 31, 2007

The Press Conference at the United Nations on June 5, 2006

The Press Conference at the United Nations on June 5, 2006

This is an excerpt of a two-hour press conference Chomsky gave at the United Nations about a month before the 2006 US-Israeli invasion of Lebanon. The transcript on its Latin America part is available here.

On Hizbullah

21:18 Q: You seem to talk a lot about international law in this book and in other books. There is a Security Council resolution 1559 on Lebanon, which calls on all militias to be disarmed. You recently visited Hizbullah, can you tell us what you think of Hizbullah in that light, and does it violate the Security Council resolution and international law?

NC: Hizbullah doesn’t violate it but the government of Lebanon does. The government of Lebanon has been unwilling to implement that component of the Security Council resolution. Should they implement it? Well, you know, that’s up to the Lebanese. Hizbullah is a major political party in Lebanon. In the south, it has allegedly about 80% support and the rest of the support is mostly to Amal, which has very similar programs. The polls indicate that a majority of the population does not think that they should disarm. But that’s for them to decide. It’s for the government of Lebanon, not-- (Q: --- international law?) If you think that the government of Lebanon is violating international law, then convince the Security Council to sanction them.

Q: …call on all the militias to be disarmed, (NC: Yeah, that’s right) only Lebanon…[hard to hear because the questioner spoke without a microphone]

NC: Yes, but militias are not responsive to any more than I am. If the Security Council says that-- (Q: renounce …) If the Security Council passes a resolution saying that I should move to some other part of the city, I don’t have to do it. That’s up to… (Q: Isn’t it violating international law?) No, because an individual doesn’t violate international law. International law is imposed on states. OK? And states can observe international law, or like the United States and Britain and others, it can radically violate international law. It’s up to the people of Lebanon and the government of Lebanon to decide whether they want Hizbullah to disarm.

Q: …
(inaudible) Iran and Syria violating international law?

NC: The states might, if you have credible evidence just as the United States radically violates international law by providing massive arms to… (Q: inaudible) Yes, I understand what you want. [note: Chomsky now talking directly to the questioner] You want to concentrate on some minor footnote in the whole story. And I suggest that we look at the whole story.
All right, turning to your minor footnote-yes, which is natural for someone who accepts and adopts and wants to pursue the policies of powerful states-turning to that minor footnote, whether Hizbullah should disarm is a matter for the people of Lebanon to decide. They have a semi-democratic government, very sectarian but it’s got democratic forms. And if they decide that Hizbullah should disarm, yes, then it should disarm.

Why aren’t they doing it? Well, there is a reason. You may not want to think about it, but the Lebanese think about it. The reason is that they know very well that a guerrilla formation in southern Lebanon is the only potential deterrent to yet another US-backed Israeli invasion. There have been four US-backed Israeli invasions since 1978, violent and brutal ones. They were finally driven out after 22 years of occupying southern Lebanon in violation of Security Council resolutions. And they were driven out by guerrilla warfare. And the retaining, remaining potential for guerrilla warfare is the only deterrent for another invasion.
Well, should Lebanon decide that they need a deterrent? Yeah, it’s up to them to decide. It’s up to them to decide. (Q: --- international law?) If they are violating a Security Council resolution, then they should be treated exactly the way the US and Israel are treated when they radically violates Security Council resolutions. So, for example, if you really think that the Security Council resolution should be enforced, then, yeah, I’m with you. But let’s take the big cases first.

So, for example, start with the UN Charter, which is the foundation of modern international law. It calls aggressive war the supreme crime. That’s the Nuremburg principle accepted by the United Nations. Aggression is the supreme international crime. Gross violation of the UN Charter. So fine, let’s..... and remember supreme international crime “encompasses all the evil that follows,” right? That’s the Nuremburg decision accepted by the UN-- so fine, let’s start punishing the serious violators of international law, like the countries, the people sitting in the White House. Yeah, I think that international law should be enforced. And we can go down for a whole series of other violations.

So, for example, I thought the UN resolutions calling for, Security Council resolutions calling for Israel to withdraw from southern Lebanon should have been enforced for 22 years. But they weren’t. And I’m sure you didn’t care about it. Or if you did, let me know. That should have been enforced. They finally did withdraw under guerrilla warfare.

The separation wall, which is part of the annexation program of the West Bank, has been declared illegal by a unanimous judgment of the World Court including the US justice, contrary to what you may believe-- if you read his independent declaration, you’ll say that he agrees with that-- so that’s a unanimous declaration of the World Court. Yeah, that’s binding in international law. That should be enforced. Instead, people like us are helping to violate that law by supporting the annexation program and the US and tacitly European Union support for it.

So sure, I would like to see all international law enforced but if we’re going to be serious about it, we don’t just take some toothpick on a mountain which happens to conform to power interests in the powerful states, and say "OK, let’s focus on that."
What we do is look at the whole picture. Start with the serious cases. Then when we get down to the toothpicks on the mountain, we can pay some attention to them, also paying some attention to the reasons why probably a majority of the population of Lebanon thinks they need a deterrent.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Q and A at University of Sussex part3 ( June, 2007)

3a On Climate Change and water wars in Palestine

Q: I’d like you to comment on the issue of climate change which some people saying is changing very rapidly into climate disaster not in a hundred years but in maybe a few decades. What kind of impact that’s going to have on our capitalism, on our late western capitalism, and all the things that are linked to it, like the war on terror and issues that come out of it, like the terrible competition that will be for dwindling resources and energy as climate change bites? Thank you.

Chomsky: Well, of course, that’s a major issue right now even at the G8 meeting. By now, I think, there is very little doubt that human activity is significantly impacting the increase of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of certain outer particle matter and so on, which is heating the earth probably to dangerous levels, maybe the catastrophic levels. These are called non-renewal processes, a small change can lead to a massive effect.
And it could happen suddenly. It could be delayed but it’s likely to be significant and severe. As usual, the major victims will be the poorest, the poorest people. It’s expected that the worst effects will be in places like sub-Saharan Africa or Bangladesh or arable areas of Pakistan and so on. They are near the-- many small countries might just disappear, go under water.
The richer countries will, as usual, find certain ways to adapt, may even partially benefit. So Canada is looking forward to opening the Northwest Passage, and declaring sovereignty which it never cared about before because it was ice field. But the effects will certainly be significant and one thing we can be confident about is that the longer we delay doing something about it, the worse it is going to be.

Well, right now the US alone is dragging its feet on doing something about it. This is incidentally another one of those cases and there are many, where – when we talk about the US, it’s kind of misleading, the US government is dragging its feet. The US population for years has been strongly in favor of taking aggressive action about this.
For example, the Kyoto Protocol was strongly supported by the population, rejected by the government-- both executive and Congress bipartisan-- rejected by the government, strongly approved by the population. In fact so strongly approved by the population that at the time of the 2004 presidential election, a majority of Bush voters thought that he supported the Kyoto Protocols. The reason, well, such an obvious thing to support that our man, this nice guy who you want to meet in a bar, then he must support them too.

Well, that tells you something about American democracy. For one thing about the elections, the public relations firms that run the elections are very careful to marginalize the issues, keep them off the table and to focus on what are called “qualities.” “Is he a nice guy?” “Would you like to meet him in a bar?” “Is he sort of friendly?“ so on and so forth, “Does he look straight in the eye?” that kind of thing. “Is he religious enough?” but not whether they stand on the issues. That’s too dangerous because the public disagrees on a host of major issues, mentioned a couple, with the elite consensus. So therefore you got to keep the public marginalized, and they are. This is one example.

What would the effects be? You know, we can’t predict in detail but we can anticipate that they will be severe. Will this lead to wars? Well, it’s already happening so we don’t have to predict that. The struggle and the conflict in Darfur for example, which is horrendous, is in certain respects, a global warming war. Regions that had been shared by farmers and nomadic groups are now declining, disappearing. There is struggle over territories and that’s leading to a lot of issues of atrocities. It’s not the only factor, others are, but it’s exacerbating the conflict in significant ways.

Take resources wars. One of them, we’re now-- right now in fact, it happens to be the 40th anniversary of one major resource war, namely Israel-Palestine. That’s a pretty arid area.
In one of the major water resources is the Jordan River, or what used to be the Jordan River. There isn’t much of Jordan River left anymore, it’s kind of a trickle, but it used to be a river. What happened? Israel intentionally hijacked the river. It took the weather waters fall down in a big rift into the river. They are simply picked up by the Israeli- which is called the National water carrier, a big pipeline goes down into Negev, and if you want to find the waters in Jordan, you look into the pipeline.
The 1967 war, to significant extent, had to do with control of water resources. That includes both the headwaters to the Jordan, and also the aquifer, a big aquifer which is under the West Bank and it’s sort of near the official border and Israel wants to use the aquifer. It had already been tapping into it before the 67 war. But after the 67 war, it controlled it. By now Israel controls the West Bank aquifer and you look at figures, I don’t have them in my head right now but the overwhelming majority of that water goes to Israeli Jews, not Palestinians.
In West Bank settlements, you find illegal settlements in the West Bank, you find nice long swimming pools, so on and so forth, plenty of water. In a neighboring Arab village, people may have to either get the water brought in in trucks which is prohibitively expensive or walk through three hours to a well somewhere up on the hills where you can get some water to bring it back home, is right next door. The same is going on in Gaza.

The current Israeli plans, and I should really be, to be accurate, they are US-Israeli plans. Israel can do nothing without the massive, diplomatic, military, economic and ideological support from the United States and the tacit agreement, silence of Europe, which goes along more or less, apart from a couple of words.

So the US-Israeli plans, the current ones, are to annex the regions which happen to control the West Bank aquifer. What’s called the separation wall, which is now an annexation wall officially, is intended to annex regions behind the wall which include much of the arable land in the West Bank and also are the kind of nice suburbs of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, but also happen to control the water, the West Bank aquifer. You know, essentially, that’s only one piece of the annexation proposals. Israel is also planning to annex the Jordan Valley, in arable land in what’s left the water. So yeah, there was a water war 40 years ago, it’s now the 40th anniversary. We can expect a good deal more of such things.

Take the invasion of Iraq for example. Except for fanatics like Tony Blair and a lot of the press, it’s pretty obvious that A major goal, if not THE major goal was to control, to increase US control over the oil resources of the region. I mean that’s transparent.
But it’s more than that. Iraq also has water resources which are scarce in the region. That’s why Iraq was the great root of western civilization, Mesopotamia. It had ample water resources. And they are precious resource, are going to become even more precious resource in the future. Some of the things that are happening in Indian-Pakistan and elsewhere, it’s worldwide phenomena and that’s a serious problem.

3b On Jimmy Carter's book

The problem of utilization of water resources in the future is going to be very serious. And one of the anticipated environmental effects of global warming is to heighten these dangers to reduce them so we can expect, we already have had the water wars in addition to other resource wars. These things in -- exactly how avoidable this is, we don’t know. I mean some scientists argue that we’ve maybe even passed the critical point where there’s not too much we can do about it. But we can once again be confident that the longer the delay, the worse the effects are going to be primarily for the poor, as usual.

Q: Professor Chomsky, following up on what you said about Israel/Palestine, now Jimmy Carter, the former USA president recently in his book, he described this situation in Palestine as “Apartheid” system. To what extent do you agree on that?

Chomsky: There was a huge furor about Carter’s use of the word “Apartheid,” which is again pure cynicism. The term is used regularly in Israel. You can read it in the editorials of Israel’s leading newspapers and commentary by leading analysts and so on, referring to the West Bank. Actually there are things to be said about “Israel proper” but put that aside. The occupied territories are commonly described as a system of Apartheid. In fact some described it as much worse than Apartheid. Including Ronnie Kasrils, one of the leading, Jewish incidentally, south African opponents of Apartheid, a courageous man, minister of the government traveling in the West Bank and he says it was worse than Apartheid ever was. The use of the word Apartheid for the West Bank is at least appropriate and not controversial. And the hysterical reaction to it in the United States is a sign of the decline of democracy. In a functioning democratic society people ought to know that but it’s the kind of part of ideological sign of it.

What about the rest of the book? Actually he gave pretty an accurate description of what it’s like in the occupied territories, which is rare, that’s sometimes done but rare. The book actually had, there were hordes of people trying to find some error in the book to discredit it. There was article after article finding some trivial phrase you can misinterpret. There is actually one serious error in the book. But that’s been totally ignored. One serious error in the book is Carter’s reference to Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982. What he says is the invasion was taken in response to Palestinian terrorism in the north of Israel. Well, that’s the conventional line and it’s a total fabrication. All the documentation is fully available, was available in 1982 and 1983. There was a ceasefire, initiated by the United States incidentally. The Palestinians lived up to it. Israel didn’t. They continued regular attacks in Lebanon often killing lots of people in an obvious effort to elicit some PLO response, Palestinian response which could be used as a pretext for the invasion. If you want precision, there were two very light and symbolic retaliations, period. The rest of it was all Israeli attacks. Lots of it were reported in fact. Again, killing people, bombing and so on.

While they couldn’t get pretext for the invasion, they just invaded anyway with US support, killed maybe 15, 20 thousand people, destroyed a large part of southern Lebanon, all way up to parts of Beirut. Well, Carter repeats the conventional falsification about this, and that’s the one serious error in the book. But nobody has ever mentioned it because it’s considered appropriate to fabricate in support of state policy. So it’s very important principle, it has to be preserved, you have to have right to lie in support of state crimes. So that error is ignored.

There is also one major contribution of the book, which is also ignored. Carter I think is the first person in the mainstream, it’s been discussed in dissident circles, but the first person in the mainstream to report and give the evidence for the fact that Israel instantly rejected The Road Map of the Quartet. The Quartet is US, UN, European Union and Soviet Union, who established the so called Road Map, which is politely described as George Bush’s vision, as to how to proceed to resolve the conflict.

The standard line is that terrible Arab didn’t live up to the Road Map. In fact Israel instantly rejected the Road Map. And that’s quite important. One of the pretexts for strangling Palestinians, Britain and West Europe were involved in this too, punishing them for voting the wrong way in a free election in January 2006, severely punished them. One of the pretexts is that the party with a plurarity of votes, Hamas, doesn’t accept the Road Map. Well, it’s rather important that was Israel that rejected it instantly. How did they reject it? By… in a usual deceitful way that the government use, formally accepted it and it immediately added 14 reservations which completely eviscerated it. You can read them in the appendix to Carter’s book.
Actually they have been available for years, and people like me talk about it but never entered in the mainstream. Ok, it entered the mainstream with Carter’s book, that’s very significant. Right for today, I haven’t seen it mentioned of that. So the two the most important parts of this book, as far as I’m aware, aren’t mentioned.
One, what it revealed about this crucial matter of the Road Map-- when I say Israel rejected it, I again, mean the United States and Israel rejected it—Israel’s rejection was approved by the United States. So yes, the US undermined the Road Map that’s supposed to be Bush’s vision.

Those two, the most important contribution of the book and one serious error in the book passed without comment, which tell us something about our own intellectual culture, about our universities for example where intellectual culture is formed and developed.

There’s a principle which says it’s appropriate and in fact even noble to lie in support of state crimes. It’s criminal to tell the truth that would reveal the nature of state crimes. I’m purposefully exaggerating but not too much. And this is a clear example of it.

So, yes apart from this, Carter’s book was good, reporting things that ought to be known but that aren’t known. So it was therefore contribution. Speaking about public opinion again, it’s notable that though the book was bitterly lambasted in commentary in the press and editorials and so on, it was the top of best sellers.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Q and A at University of Sussex part2 ( June, 2007)

2 On Iran



2a Q: Just to refer back to your “Iran effect,” there’s been recent speculation both politically and in the media about Iran. Given its status in the Middle East and the power that it yields compared to Afghanistan or Iraq for example, how honestly realistic do you think a military strike against Iran by the US is likely to happen?

Chomsky: Well, we have no idea what planning is going on within the small one--by now pretty desperate--clique that is barely holing onto power in Washington. And if history is any guide, they have not informed British intelligence or their favorite allies about what they’re planning if they even know. We really don’t know. I mean one of the reasons for government-- its main reasons for government secrecy: you look through studied declassified documents and you do learn that there is a security interest all the way through. But primarily, it’s security against the domestic enemy. They don’t want their own population to know what they are up to because if people did know what they were up to, the chances are that they’d act and act in a dedicated fashion to prevent it. So, therefore you have to keep planning secret from the population, the domestic enemy. And that’s what’s happening now: we do not know the plans.

They are certainly issuing threats very publicly and openly, not only the words but even the actions. So, for example, the last couple of years, the United States has provided to Israel over a hundred advanced jet bombers openly advertised as capable of bombing Iran and returning. I don’t think a word about that has been published in the United States. But it’s public information, you can read it in the Israeli press and you can read it in military journals. Certainly Iranian intelligence knows it. Israel already has, according to its own estimate, air and armored forces that are larger and technologically more advanced than any NATO power other than the United States. It’s not because Israel is capable of doing that but it’s because by now it’s virtually the offshoot of the United States, particularly a military and high tech offshoot. That’s a serious warning to Iran. Furthermore, deploying major naval forces in the Gulf, right off shore from Iran is an obvious threat. I mean if Iran was deploying major naval forces in the English Channel or the Caribbean, you can bet that the United States and London would be pretty upset about it. In fact they’d go to war.

Capturing Iranian officials in northern Iraq, now that’s provocation. The United States is almost certainly --- we can’t prove it but the evidence is pretty strong --- carrying out, is supporting secessionist groups, the terrorist groups, in fact. In Iran recently, there was an attack from Baluchi based, Pakistani-based terrorists (…) groups are being supported and others, all that is very provocative. That’s all over and above the overt threat. I should say, if anyone cares, the overt threats to Iran are a crime. They are a major violation of the United Nations Charter, which outlaws the threat or use of force in international affairs. Threat of force is a violation of the Charter. It’s a violation of law. In outlaw states, like the United States and Britain where law doesn’t matter much. There is very little comment on that but definitely the threats are there and all of this could lead to just an accidental war.

The case of the captured British sailors is an example. There are no territorial boundaries in the Gulf that mean anything. You have naval forces there right next door to Iran. Yeah, you are likely to have an accident. And an accident can easily escalate and explode. So yes, there is a threat of war.
The question that we really should be asking, I think is “Is there a way to avert it?” Actually there is, a very simple way. You can’t prove that it will work but it’s certainly a good start: turn the United States and Iran into functioning democratic societies. You can tell me about Britain where I don’t know the details but I know them about the United States and Iran. You can find them out too.

Public opinion in the United States and Iran is very carefully monitored by the leading institution in the world that monitors public opinion: Program on International Policy Attitudes at University of Maryland. Find it on the Internet.
They did a careful study of Iranian and US opinion on nuclear issues. And very interestingly, they’re virtually identical.
In both countries, there’s the overwhelming majority --- in the United States, it’s 82% --- that think that all nuclear weapons should be abolished. What that means is that the nuclear states, like the United States and Britain, should observe their legal responsibility. And it is a legal responsibility determined by the World Court to take good faith efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons and not to increase their nuclear capacities as the US and Britain are now doing but to move to eliminate them.
Well, that’s supported by 82% of the population in the United States and comparable figures in Iran. If that can’t be achieved, very large majorities in both countries think that the Middle East, the entire Middle East should be turned into a nuclear weapons free zone. That means Iran, Israel and US and perhaps British forces deployed in the region should not have any nuclear weapons capacity whatsoever. OK, that would be a step forward. 75% of the Americans think that all threats against Iran should be dropped and the United States should enter into diplomatic relations with Iran.

Incidentally, they think the same thing about Cuba. Again an overwhelming majority of the Iranians and the Americans think that Iran should have the right to produce nuclear energy just as every signer of the Non Proliferation Treaty does, but should not have nuclear weapons.
Well, you know, that’s the framework for an agreement. All that would be necessary is to turn these countries and I suspect the same is to Britain, you can figure that out, change these two countries so that they become functioning democracies. That is societies in which an overwhelming majority of public opinion can have an influence on policy.
Well, let’s even take something weaker: countries in which an overwhelming majority of public opinion can be reported in the media. So far as I’m aware none of this has even been reported though it’s obviously highly pertinent. In real democratic societies, it would be very significant. It’s there. You can find it on the Internet. You can find it in dissident – I’ve written about it, I give talks about it and other people do, but that’s kind of on the margins. Try to find it in the mainstream press. Do internet search. I don’t think you will, but try to find it. We certainly ought to be able to do something to make our own societies functioning democracies. The claim that we can’t do that is absurd.
Can we do anything to help Iran become a functioning democracy? The answer is yes, we can. We could listen to the pleas of the very courageous Iranian reformers and democracy activists who are pleading with the United States to call off the threats. That’s people like Akbar Ganji or Shirin Ebadi and the labor activists, people you don’t hear about, but some of the most important and courageous of them. They are saying drop the threats for a good reason which we can all figure out.
When you threaten a government, it’s going to react. If you threaten a government with attack and destruction, which is called politely “regime change,” what are they going to do? Especially when the threat is credible, I mean it’s not like say, Luxembourg issuing the threat. This is the world’s super superpower acting to make the threat very visible, like the naval deployments in the Gulf. How did they react? We know. We know how our own governments react when there are much more mild threats. You react with repression. And in the reactionary theocracy that dominates Iran they react with severer repression.

That’s why people are recently being jailed. I mean the West bitterly protests the imprisonment. Rightly I protested too, but I wish we recognized it as complete hypocrisy. Imprisonment is a predictable result of the actions that the US is taking with the approval of its allies to threaten Iran. It’s a predictable result and they keep telling us, if we want to hear. So yes, they reacted in the way and that’s the predictable consequence of our threats, illegal threats.

We can improve the circumstances for democracy promotion in Iran by doing what the overwhelming majority of Americans want: withdraw the threats. That will all leave some space for reformists and activists in Iran. And that’s what they are pleading for and that’s what we can do. No better source. So yes, we can act to improve the prospects for democracy in Iran so the Iranian public opinion will have an influence on public policy and we can certainly do in our own countries. OK, that leads out our steps towards alleviation of this crisis which could be a very severe one. If war breaks out either planned or accidental, it could be extremely severe.

Just recently, one well-known British military historian, Corelli Barnett said simply it’s going to be World War Three. Well, maybe, certainly it could have an enormous “Iran effect.” It could lead to indescribable consequences in Iraq and in the region. We might incidentally ask how people in the region feel. That’s also being studied.
In the Sunni states near Iran, the polls were taken, I think in Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan where they don’t like Iran very much. Nevertheless, a large majority of the population favors a nuclear armed Iran over any military action. Certainly we can know what Iranians think. So if public opinion made any difference to policy, whether in the region, in the United States, anywhere, there would be no steps towards war, no threats of war. Rather there would be steps towards improving the possibilities for peace. I don’t know if you want me to go into it, there’s not a lot of time but there have been recent revelations of options for negotiation. They’re quite serious. They were simply rejected by the United States and incidentally by the European Union.

Just to mention briefly in 2003, we now know that Iran approached the United States with proposals to negotiate all outstanding issues. Nuclear issues, a two state settlement for Israel/Palestine, which incidentally Iran supports contrary to what you read, everything. The US reaction was to censure the Swiss ambassador who brought the proposal. The end of that.

The following year, the European Union entered into negotiations with Iran and actually reached an agreement, a bargain. The agreement was that Iran would suspend the uranium enrichment which it is legally entitled to carry out, that’s agreed on all sides, but it was suspended. And in return, the European Union would provide “firm guarantees on security issues.”

Now the “security issues” is -- the term is well understood-- that refers to US-Israeli threats to attack Iran, which are of course illegal. So European Union, its side of the bargain was to provide those guarantees. Well, Europe didn’t live up to its side of the bargain probably under US pressure or so US experts on the topic argue. Anyway they didn’t live up to it. After that Iran withdrew from its side of the bargain. It’s not the way it was described in the West as Iran broke the agreement. Not exactly true. That continues.

The West adores President Ahmadinejad. Every crazy phrase comes out with big publicity. Ahmadinejad has nothing to do with foreign policy. That’s in the hands of his superior, Ayatolla Khamenei, who has—you don’t read his statements very often: for example, his statement that Iran supports the Arab League position on Israel-Palestine, namely a full normalization of relations with Israel within the framework of the international consensus on a two-state settlement, but the US and Israel have blocked for the last 30 years. I haven’t seen that reported. Actually you have a little bit, a couple of reports on the Financial Times, London Financial Times but it’s not on everyone’s lips.
And internal to Iran, if you read specialists on the topic, there’s plenty of controversy and openings. We could assist in positive developments if that were the goal. Just as actions could be taken to reduce the threat of terrorism, if that were the goal. If that was not the goal, of course you proceed with aggressive militarism which is very likely to heighten the tensions and the consequences which could be awesome.