Friday, April 30, 2004

Book Names Iraqi in Alleged '99 Bid to Buy Uranium So has Joe Wilson announced that he was wrong about everything yet? Have all the lefty loudmouths admitted that they were full of shit. Or did they lie?

Agonizing Choices George Will on Fallujah. I think we're making a big mistake in backing down there. We may have killed hundreds of them, but by not clearly showing that we own that city we have allowed them to "win." Winning in the Arab world is a bit different than in ours. By leaving Saddam in power in 1991 we allowed him to claim victory, as ridiculous as that may have been. But in his world it made sense. As the Arabs saw it, we must have been afraid to finish the job for some reason, afraid to really take on Saddam and kill him, ergo, Saddam wins. As Will says here, and he's said the same thing in regard to Israel and the Palestinians, in order for you to win, your opponent has to know he has lost. Mercy and compromise are signs of weakness to an Arab. Like leaving Saddam alive in 1991, this will come back to hurt us.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 23.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.

As he lay down, bedbugs began falling on to him, "one after another, like ants. I couldn't sleep." from Gulag by Anne Applebaum.

I've seen this pop up on a number of websites recently. I don't know if it is leading up to anything or what you're supposed to do with it afterward but, well, there it is.

Kerry Escalating Use of War Veteran Status Mission creep! Kerry is becoming a parody of himself, as this L.A. Times article describes. I didn't know he served in Vietnam:

Kerry's medal-laden service in Vietnam long has been an integral part of his political persona. But if his performance on the stump this week was any indication, references to his time as a naval officer commanding a swift boat in the Mekong Delta will be a ubiquitous part of the Democrat's presidential bid.

In one 24-hour period, he invoked his service:

• To fend off attacks by his Republican rivals;

• As evidence he will fight to expand healthcare;

• As evidence he understands the complicated landscape in Iraq;

• To explain his love of peanut butter-and-jelly sandwiches.

This also brings to mind how he was recently asked if he ever had a pet that he really liked or something like that, and of course he brought up a ridiculous story about the dog he had on his boat in Vietnam.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

The Australian: James Morrow: UN apologists remain silent on oil scandal Isn't it odd that very little is in the mainstream media about this? The level of corruption here makes Enron look like the Salvation Army. This scandal has dead bodies attached to it but since Bush isn't at fault, eh, where's the news value?

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

G.O.P. Protesters Plan to Infiltrate Convention as Volunteers I really hope the do it, and can then find out just how mean spirited Republicans can be.

Saddam's WMD Have Been Found
Looks like there may be an October Surprise after all. How much longer can the mainstream media continue to ignore this?

Maj. Ralph Peters on how we've been too soft in Iraq. Sad to say it's true. If Kerry had been smart he would have come at Bush from the right. Say that the war was justified (after all he voted in favor of it) but that Bush screwed up the execution through half measures and/or incompetence. The only Dem to come close to that position though was Liberman and he barely registered in the primaries. The Dems can't do a muscular foreign policy anymore.

Monday, April 26, 2004

Iraqi Weapons in Syria As this shows, rather than hyping the intelligence the US was apparently downplaying it. So how do we get to the Bekka Valley?

Reports of Iraqi WMD winding up in Syria were not just coming from the Israelis. In October 2003, retired Air Force Lt. Gen. James Clapper, head of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency, revealed that vehicle traffic photographed by U.S. spy satellites indicated that material and documents related to Saddam's forbidden WMD programs had been shipped to Syria before the war. It was no surprise that the United States and its allies had not found stockpiles of forbidden weapons in Iraq, Clapper told a breakfast briefing given to reporters in Washington. "Those below the senior leadership saw what was coming, and I think they went to extraordinary lengths to dispose of the evidence," he said.

"We have had six or seven credible reports of Iraqi weapons being moved into Syria before the war," a senior administration official tells Insight. "In every case, the U.S. intelligence community sought to discount or discredit those reports."

Sudan tells Syria to get the WMD out of their country. I wonder where Syria got WMD? Huh. I'm sure they were going to get rid of them anyway and the war in Iraq had nothing to do with it.

Saturday, April 24, 2004

An excellent piece on the failure of Arab culture by Ralph Peters. Lines like this should get the phones ringing:

In the United States, campus-generated political correctness was never more than a joke - capable of turning somber conservatives purple but unable to alter anything that matters. The far more dangerous form of political correctness is that which prevails in the dream-world of diplomacy: We pretend that all civilizations have equal merit.

But they don't. It's time to face up to the functional and moral collapse of the Arab world - if we can't describe the problem honestly, we shall never deal with it effectively.

Arab civilization has failed.

Friday, April 23, 2004

Iraq: The Myth Versus the Reality Professor Hanson in today's NRO.

Wow. From the News Herald, in Panama City, FL, a major slam against Arab culture. I bet this stirs up the usual crowd.

To Pat Tillman:

St. Crispen's Day Speech
William Shakespeare, 1599

Enter the KING
WESTMORELAND. O that we now had here
But one ten thousand of those men in England
That do no work to-day!

KING. What's he that wishes so?
My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin;
If we are mark'd to die, we are enow
To do our country loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.

By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
It yearns me not if men my garments wear;
Such outward things dwell not in my desires.
But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.

No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England.
God's peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more methinks would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse;
We would not die in that man's company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.

This day is call'd the feast of Crispian.
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian.'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say 'These wounds I had on Crispian's day.'

Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words-
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red.

This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered-

We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

The Day After The Day After Tomorrow Let's all calm down about global warming, shall we? The movie is on its way and will no doubt be scary stuff.

Mark Steyn on the cultural clash between Islam and the West, and how the West, particularly in Europe, doesn't realize it is in a war for its very survival:

What will London — or Paris, or Amsterdam (for she is after all a citizen of the European Union) — be like in the mid-Thirties? On present demographic projections, it will be far more Muslim — how far depends on whether European politicians make any serious attempt this decade to wean the populace off their unsustainable 35-hour weeks, etc. If they make no attempt at all, then to keep the present level of pensions and health benefits the EU will need to import so many workers from North Africa and the Middle East that it will be well on its way to majority Muslim by 2035. Can a society become increasingly Islamic in its demographic character without becoming increasingly Islamic in its political character?

A few weeks back I was strolling along the Boulevard de Maisonneuve in Montreal when I saw a Muslim woman across the street, all in black, covered head to toe, the full hejab. She was passing a condom boutique, its window filled with various revolting novelty prophylactics, ‘cum rags’, etc. It was a perfect snapshot of the internal contradictions of multicultural diversity. In 30 years’ time, either the Arab lady will still be there, or the condom store, but not both. Which would you bet on?

If you think they aren't trying to impose their version of reality and how life shall be lived on us, consider this:

The other day, Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammad told Lisbon’s Publica magazine that a group of London Islamists are ‘ready to launch a big operation’ on British soil. ‘We don’t make a distinction between civilians and non-civilians, innocents and non-innocents,’ he said, clarifying the ground rules. ‘Only between Muslims and unbelievers. And the life of an unbeliever has no value.’ The cleric added he expected to see the banner of Islam flying in Downing Street. ‘I believe one day that is going to happen. Because this is my country, I like living here,’ he said. ‘If they believe in democracy, who are they afraid of? Let Omar Bakri benefit from democracy!’

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Vietnam? - Why the analogy doesn't hold water. Christopher Hitchens again from Slate.

IRAQ THE MODEL A heartbreaking post from Mohammad, an Iraqi blogger:

I believe in the bright future ahead but I’m upset now and I came here to write and release some of my frustration. I can't bear it alone. why me? Why my country? All that we need is a moment of peace. I really need it now. Why should I bear it with my people? When will it be over and when can we live in peace at last?

The hardest thing is that I have to fight more, and I will, but God, please give me the strength. Why should I be strong while watching others run away; Spain, Honduras, Thailand, human organizations, the UN and all the others who want (and it’s their right I must say) to avoid the dangers. But why did they disappoint us? Why abandon us in this moment when we really need them? Will they come back when conditions improve? Most likely, but who will need them then!!? We don’t need doctors and engineers. We have enough of those and large numbers of Iraqi doctor, teachers and engineers are working abroad. We do export minds, and some of those have returned and are doing their job and some are on their way back. We need political, financial and military support, and once we get rid of the terrorists, WE will show you what we can do, and we will not forget those who helped us, they will remain as friends and allies, that’s from a political point of view. As for me, they will remain as my real family, my brothers and sisters.

Here's a nasty slam at Bob Woodward's new book by John Podhoretz in the Ny Post. He points out something that I noticed in the "60 Minutes" interview as well. This book doesn't make Bush look bad. It clearly shows him in full control of the White House, getting input from all different sources before making the decision to go to war. So all of the rhetoric about Bush being a sock puppet who's told what to do by Cheney, what happens to that?

A question of patriotism Jonah Goldberg on John F'ing Kerry and the rest of the Dems whines about how patrotic they are, and you better not question them about it!:

Again: Why is it fair game to question conservatives' love or loyalty to children or to their fellow man, but beyond the pale to question liberals' love of country?

In fact, I think liberal defensiveness sometimes undermines their case. After all, if I angrily asked, "Are you saying I'm gay?" as often as liberals say, "Are you questioning my patriotism?" a lot of people would think I'm hiding something.

How Bush Caused 9/11 Another great piece oin all the 20/20 hindsight and second guessing going on about 9/11:

If the CIA had plugged the names of the couple of terrorists known to them into that software, all the other terrorists would have been identified before 9/11. And when they all purchased airplane tickets for flights on the same day, even the dumbest guy in government -- heck, even an "anti-war" college professor! -- would have known to detain them and keep them from boarding their planes.

But if that had happened, guess what? Even if the government announced, "Major Terrorist Threat Blocked by Quick Action," we would have dozed through the news reports, wouldn't we?

And the civil libertarians would have kept the courts tied up for years, because of course the government had no right to spy on the airline ticketing system and so they "shouldn't" have found any information about ticket purchases by anyone.

The Word Trade Center would still be standing, but the Bush administration would quite possibly have fallen -- as a result of having succeeded in preventing that national disaster.

They are still complaining about analyzing airline ticket data and still don't allow Arabs to be questioned more than any other group.

An incredible article from a British paper about their homegrown Islamists who want to blow up their own country and kill all non-believers. Meanwhile they are all on the dole, living at taxpayer expense. And they think it's funny.

Stop whimpering, we're in a battle Mark Steyn, as usual, nails the media and the perennial whingers going on about Iraq and 9/11:

The biggest whimpers of all come from the 9/11 Commission. Have you been watching it? Me neither. But, when I catch the odd 10 minutes, I begin to feel as anti-American as Margaret Drabble and Harold Pinter. In its ghastly exhibitionist ersatz-legalism, it represents all the most malign features of American life. Tony Blair should have offered to loan Lord Hutton. Instead, a mélange of hacks and has-beens mugs for the cameras round the clock, and any piece of government paper from the summer of 2001 containing the words "plane" and/or "Muslim" is taken as evidence of Bush's complicity.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

The Depressive and the Psychopath Interesting article on the Columbine killers. Just this morning Fox had some pinhead parents on (who's kid knew Klebold and Harris but wasn't shot) talking about "Columbine: Five Years Later" and how it all happened because of bullying and it was really the principal's fault since he didn't do enough to stop the bullying and other bullshit. So the poor little teens were driven to it by football players, huh? Many of the parents in that case are just as bad as some of the survivors of 9/11. The possibility that these two mopes were just evil doesn't get you on TV I guess.

Clearing the Air Good. I finally have something to turn to when someone says Bush has "raped" the environment.

I was home this past weekend and had some excitement on Friday night. We had gone to bed about midnight or so, and at about 12:30 the two dogs next door start going nuts, even more than usual. This got our three knuckleheads fired up, and they ran down the hall to stand at the back door barking like crazy.

Usually when someone is in the alley that's the routine, they go crazy for a couple minutes then they quit. Not this time though, and looking out our bedroom wondow I noticed that what I thought was one of our motion sensor lights had gone on (turns out Helen had just flipped on the back porch light to see what they were barking at). So I get up, open the back door and the dogs go sprinting to darkest corner of the back yard and are raising hell. I walk out there to the edge of the pool deck trying to call them back in and quiet them down. No dice. I go back in the house to get a flashlight, walk out along the back walkway, turn it on to see what they are yelling at, and the first thing the beam hits is a guy sitting in my back yard.

The heart skips a beat or two and I yell the obvious question: what the fuck are you doing in my yard? No answer. The dogs have him surrounded so I run in the house, grab my gun, run back out and approach him. He's still sitting there, doing nothing. My first thought was that he was some drunk homeless guy, like some I've seen in the alley now and then looking for cans. But as I get closer I see it's just a kid, 18 at the oldest.

Again I ask him what the fuck he's doing, and apparently he's afraid of the dogs so he doesn't want to move. He just sits there and says "Didn't you ever play "ditch 'em" when you were a kid?" Did I ever jump over a six-foot tall block wall into some stranger's backyard in the middle of the night? No, I respond, I was never that stupid.

I ask him if he'd been drinking and he says no, that he's playing hide and seek with his friends (over a five mile radius!) and it's all just good teenage fun. He says he lives about three miles away and had just hopped over the wall while walking down the alley looking for a hiding place. I tell him to save it for the cops who are on their way. Within minutes the PPD helicopter is right over our house shinning the mega-spotlight in the backyard and lighting everything up like it's daytime. The kid says "Oh man, do you think they'll make me pay for the helicopter?" At this point I'm starting to feel sorry for the kid. I think he realizes that his fun for the night is very much over.

By this time the dogs are only barking intermittently and Loba and Riley have made a new best friend. Loba is licking him on the chin and Riley's tail was wagging like it was all good dog fun. Having someone sitting on the ground where he could more easily get at him for petting is what Riley lives for. The kid asks "is it OK if I pet your dogs?" Yeah, I think that's what they had in mind, go ahead.

The cops get there after about 10 minutes, put the cuffs on him and ask him what he's doing. He gives them the same hide and seek story and one of the cops asks "whatta you, 12? Jesus." Four patrol cars in the front of the house and at least five cops, along with the helicopter overhead.

So I'm yukking it up with the cops in the driveway for a few minutes before they go. Lori had been talking to the dispatcher before the police got there and they asked if any weapons were involved. She said I had a gun and they asked for my description so they'd know who was who. "No shirt, khaki shorts." I'm thinking this is just like "Cops." But there the guy without the shirt goes to jail, so I had Lori take the gun inside.

One of the cops in the driveway said "Yeah, I heard on the radio no shirt, with a gun, and thought whoo boy, here we go." If "Cops" is any indication, I figure your odds of getting arrested double the minute you take off your shirt. So happy ending. They said they would check to see if he had a record or any warrants, and if it looked like he was up to no good then we could prosecute him. But otherwise I told them to forget it. They never called back so I guess he really was playing hide and seek, or at least hadn't been caught for burglary yet and didn't have a record.

Can you imagine being that stupid though? Jumping in someone's back yard in the middle of the night? And then not running away when the lights come on and the dogs come out? What if I had been an asshole looking for an excuse to shoot someone? Or just got scared and shot him in a panic? The kid is heading for the Darwin Awards if he keeps this up.

Regarding Bush's support for the Israeli decision on Gaza and the West Bank, I think it describes reality, which is one thing that really pisses people off about Bush. Consider the Kyoto treaty on global warming. During the Clinton Administration the Senate voted 95-0 against even considering ratification, even though Al Gore had signed it on behalf of the US. In other words, "sign whatever you want, but don't even bother sending it to us to ratify. It's DOA."

So why does Bush get slammed for taking the treaty off the table? Because he said out loud what everyone knew to be the truth- Kyoto is going nowhere so we might as well admit it and move on. Clinton would hem and haw about maybe reworking some of the more troubling aspects, and maybe with some more tweaking we can resubmit, blahblahblah. That is how the diplomatic world likes to do things. Keep having meetings, going out to lunch, more meetings, going out to dinner, meanwhile nothing is accomplished and the problems remain for more meetings, lunches and dinners.

I think this is a similar situation. Bush has always said that the Palestinians have to do something about the terrorist infrastructure that has been set up in the West Bank and Gaza. I don't think he could have been more clear about it considering all his statements about terrorism (by the way, I love how al-Reuters continues to refer to "terrorism", with the sneer quotes) and how it has to be eradicated.

What has been the Palestinian response? Actually, they may have gone the opposite direction according to this story on how Arafat was probably involved in the murder of three American diplomats (that's aside from the other Americans he'd been involved in killing: If Arafat thought he was going to get concessions from this President after something like that he's even stupider than people think. I think this is Bush finally giving up on a negotiated settlement. Israel is going to do what it needs to do, finish their wall and leave the Palestinians to deal with reality for once in their miserable lives.

There are certain facts on the ground that the Pals need to finally recognize. Israel won all the wars the Pals started against them. If that means the eventual Palestinian state isn't going to look like what it might have in 1949 then so be it. That was the Palestinian's choice. They could have had peace and a country at any time over the past fifty years (particularly in 2000). But at an Arab League meeting in Khartoum after the 1967 war they came up with what came to be known as "the three nos": No recognition of Israel, no negotiations with Israel and no peace with Israel. They've stuck to that ever since, with the exception of Anwar Sadat, and that agreement cost Sadat his life, even if it did get the Sinai returned to Egypt.

Not having seen what the final map will look like it's hard to know what the Pals will be left with for a country. It's going to be problematic no matter what, since large segments of the Arab population will refuse to accept Israel even if it means more war. Peace matters less to them than winning, even if winning is impossible. As Golda Meier said in the 60s: There will be peace in the Middle East when the Arabs love their children more than they hate Jews. These are not people with a firm grasp of reality, and I think it's time they had some thrust upon them.

Oil-for-Food & Terrorism I wonder if this story will ever see the light of day in the mainstream media? Not likely. It directly ties Saddam to support for terrorism through the oil-for-food program administered by the UN.

There are at least two links documented already. Both involve oil buyers picked by Saddam and approved by the U.N. One was a firm with close ties to a Liechtenstein trust that has since been designated by the U.N. itself as "belonging to or affiliated with Al Qaeda." The other was a Swiss-registered subsidiary of a Saudi oil firm that had close dealings with the Taliban during Osama bin Laden's 1990's heyday in Afghanistan.

Monday, April 19, 2004

EPA Approved ICBMs I'm not sure, but this could be the stupidest thing I've ever read.

In order to comply with EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) regulations, and at a cost of about $5.2 million per ICBM, the rocket motors on 500 Minuteman III missiles will be replaced with new ones. These rockets will emit less toxic chemicals when used.

So as I understand it, the idea is to be less polluting as we rain nuclear devastation down on some future target. Up next, heart transplants for death row inmates.

Madrid policeman's body burned This has all the marks of a Buddhist terrorism operation. My god, what savages these people are. Look at what we are dealing with. I wonder if Zapatero thinks he's going to be off the Islamist hit list now that he's running away in Iraq?

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Mansoor Ijaz on 9/11 Commission This is obscene. The fucking Democrats on the 9/11 Commission keep trying to pin all the blame on Bush and this is what went on under Clinton. Sudan offered Osama to us several times and we didn't want him, and even worse, attacked Sudan!

Khartoum, August 8, 1998. A day after the U.S. embassies were bombed, two of the key suspected planners, Sayyid Nazir Abbass and Sayyid Iskandar Sayyid Suliman, landed in Khartoum with fake Pakistani passports. Sudanese intelligence immediately got in touch with the FBI, put the suspects — who had taken up residence in an apartment opposite the U.S. embassy in Khartoum — under surveillance and asked FBI officials for further instructions. The Sudanese intelligence chief even sent a handwritten note to the FBI director asking for guidance. The U.S. responded on August 20, 1998 — with a cruise-missile attack against the al-Shifa pharmaceutical plant that the Clinton administration incorrectly assessed was producing VX nerve gas precursors. The two suspects fled to Pakistan.

Politicizing American intelligence had reached its zenith in the Sudan case. Richard Clarke said in a January 23, 1999, interview with the Washington Post that intelligence existed to link bin Laden to al-Shifa's owners, Iraqi nerve gas producing agents and the National Islamic Front, Sudan's ruling junta. Last month, in a 60 Minutes interview, Clarke said, "...there's absolutely no evidence that Iraq was supporting al Qaeda. Ever." It is precisely such contradictions that are intolerable in the search for truth on how 9/11 could have occurred.

Will the Opposition Lead? This is a really good editorial from the New York Times no less, on the war in Iraq and the need for Democrats to speak out intelligently on it, in stead of the way they have been. In other words, they need to be more Lieberman and less Kennedy.

As for the results [of the war in Iraq] — well, in one respect, these have turned out to be, in spite of everything, almost comically successful. Baathism's super-weapons may have been a figment of the universal imagination; but as soon as the United States elevated this figment into a world crisis, astonishing progress was made in tracking down weapons programs and trafficking in Libya, Iran, Dubai and Pakistan. Some people will go on insisting that sudden progress on these matters has nothing to do with Iraq, and the dominoes tumbled simultaneously by sheer coincidence — but some people will believe anything.

This is what I thought was happening, now we have proof. This is so insane words fail me:

...the Department of Transportation continued to fine any airline that was caught having more than two people of the same ethnic persuasion in a secondary line for line for questioning, including and especially, two Arabs."

Wait a minute. So if airline security had three suspicious Arab guys they had had to let one go because they'd reached a quota?

That was it, Lehman said, "because of this political correctness that became so entrenched in the 1990s, and continues in current administration. No one approves of racial profiling, that is not the issue. The fact is that Norwegian women are not, and 85-year-old women with aluminum walkers are not, the source of the terrorist threat. The fact is that our enemy is the violent Islamic extremism and the overwhelming number of people that one need to worry about are young Arab males, and to ask them a couple of extra questions seems to me to be common sense, yet if an airline does that in numbers that are more than proportionate to their number in particular line, then they get fined and that is why you see so many blue haired old ladies and people that are clearly not of Middle Eastern extraction being hauled out in such numbers because otherwise they get fined."

This should be a headline coming out of the 9/11 commission.

A Wrong Turn, Chaos and a Rescue More on the Marines in Falluja. Sounds like an incredible battle, particularly this:

The rescue squad rushed four tanks and six Humvees to the area, where they fought their way through several blocks to reach the burning carrier. Surrounded by 25 Marine riflemen on foot, the armored vehicles advanced, firing machine guns from their turrets. Overhead, Air Force attack planes repeatedly strafed the area. Marine officials here said at least 20 insurgents were shot dead during the fighting.

"Within the first 500 meters, we were shooting 360 degrees," said Lt. Joshua Glover, 25, who commanded the rescue force. "When we finally saw the [armored personnel carrier], it was a piece of burning metal."

Firing in 360 degrees for 500 meters and not one Marine is killed. Meanwhile the jihadis lose 100. Unbelievable.

Marines Use Low-Tech Skill to Kill 100 in Urban Battle Interesting read on what's going on around Falluja. The jihadis are throwing everything they have at the Marines and coming up empty. Score: Marines- 100, Jihadis- 0.

One of the most important tools for this battle comes from the garden shed: sledgehammers. On Wednesday, marines punched "mouseholes," just big enough for gun barrels, in the brick walls of the homes they occupied. They also smashed windows to scatter shards of glass across the front steps.

"It's an early warning system," Capt. Shannon Johnson explained, as he crunched noisily across the glass, "something the old guys taught us."

Nearby, a squad of young men with crewcuts swung heavy hammers under a punishing sun. They were knocking down the low walls along the rooftops so they could move on catwalks from roof to roof.

"This is classic urban warfare," said Maj. Gen. Jim Mattis, commander of the First Marine Division. "It's all the stuff World War II taught us, along with Korea, Vietnam and Somalia. People will be studying Falluja for years to come."

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Rich Lowry on 9/11 Commission Great satire on the post-9/11 Dems and how they portray themselves as tougher than tough on terrorism, despite eight years of evidence to the contrary.

ScrappleFace: Bush Admits Mistakes, Apologizes One of the best bits I've seen from Scrappleface.

During last night's nationally-televised presidential news conference, Mr. Bush said he was unprepared for questions about his mistakes in office. He steadfastly refused to apologize for the 9/11 terror attacks, instead he again advanced the now-discredited theory that terrorists, not U.S. government officials, were to blame for the terrorism.

To judge from the questions in last night's press conference the media was hoping that Bush would start to cry like Jimmy Swaggart, drop to his knees and announce his resignation.

9/11 Widow Fatigue Dorothy Rabinowitz on the small group of radical 9/11 widows who get microphones stuck in their faces all the time. I don't recall small groups of victim family members attacking the government after OKC. Like all activists they are awarded much more credit and phony expertise than they deserve.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Blind in Baghdad As much as I hate to admit it, Richard Cohen makes some good points here. I'm afraid that the people we are trying to help don't know how to be helped. Arab culture is so decadent that we may not be able to pull this off, even if we do everything right.

Monday, April 12, 2004

It's the War, Stupid Larry Miller on the war, worrying about it, and getting people (particularly George Bush, to focus on it:

In service of this goal, I would like to propose a new slogan. It's based on the old anti-war chant from the sixties, "Peace Now!" You must've heard that one. Demonstrators have been shouting it for the last 40 years. "Peace Now, Peace Now, Peace Now." Hell, I think I probably shouted it, myself, somewhere around '73. (This would have been shortly before the drinking age in Massachusetts went down to 18, after which my friends and I took to shouting far more sensible things, like, "You can't cut us off, it's only 11:00. Hey, let go of me.")

Why we must never abandon this historic struggle in Iraq Here's Tony Blair on the stakes. Why the hell can't Bush say something like this? Where the hell is he? If there is one thing I've learned in 16 years of media and public relations it is if you leave the field to your opponents they will win, by default if not the strength of their arguments.

This is from an Iraqi blogger and was posted on the one year anniversary of the fall of the Saddam statue in Baghdad.

The first candle.
It’s the day that brought me back to life. It’s the 9th of April and I’m free, and they will not steel my joy again and they will not silence me. A year ago at the same date, the thieves and criminals prevented me from celebrating my freedom in the open air, and today thieves, criminals and fanatics are doing the same, but they will not steal my happiness that is making my soul fly and dance with joy and they can’t stop this.

A year ago, words failed me as I met the 1st American soldier, and I still remember his name, “corporal, Adam” and all I could utter was “thank you!” how could I ever put my whole life in few words? How could I have thanked that soldier enough? How could I have told him what it meant to me to see him and his comrades-who brought me back to life- at last? Thank you Adam, Lieutenant Antonio, Captain Brian Curtis and all the coalition soldiers who I can’t remember their names, and those I never met.

It’s the 9th of April and I feel safe! And I don’t care what those ‘political experts’ on the newspapers and TV channels, say about the ‘occupation’, deteriorated security and ‘unemployment’. You can’t understand this, because you never experienced real fear this long. Let me tell you about it, as I’m one of those who passed Saddam’s filthy test of life.

The statue fell and with it, horror fell. You don’t know what it means to be scared to death most of your life, brothers and sisters. I knew that and I faced it during the reign of evil and darkness. I was afraid to talk, I wasn't allowed to think and I wasn't allowed to feel…I wasn't allowed to love.

How dare anyone imply to me how should I feel? And who they think they are, those who try to put words in my mouth? I’m alive and I’m free, and I have the right to say whatever I feel and chose the words I like. No one will tell me again what to say and what to feel.

Yes, it’s the 9th of April. I lit the 1st candle today to celebrate my 1st year, as a free man and no one will prevent me from celebrating. I, who the earth is no longer enough to contain my feelings, I who have wings now, and I don’t have to carry an ID…I’m Iraqi. I have the right to wander through my country southwards and northwards, without being stopped by someone to ask me who I am and where I’m going. I’m the son of the 9th of April.

Years ago, when I was a fugitive, a Ba’athist who’s a friend of my father and a relative said to me mockingly “how long are you going to live like this!? Get out of this ‘hole’ and turn yourself in to the authorities and do your military service.” I looked at him and I couldn’t say anything, but my soul screamed inside me, “The day when your tyrant becomes a defeated fugitive will come. He will search for a hole to hide in, and I will own Iraq then”. And here comes the dream true!

I’m the son of the 9th of April, tyrant’s clowns, and you have to fear me, you who betrayed me every minute and every day, and you want to chain me again???
You know why it’s impossible now? I was a slave and I never knew who I am…. and now I’m free! Thanks to all who dared to tell the truth and didn’t fear the consequences. And as for you, who saved me and my people, I can’t thank you enough. My voice goes feeble and my eyes swell with tears as I think of the Iraqis, Americans and all the coalition soldiers who gave their lives to free Iraq and make this world a better place. God bless their souls and all those who decided to fight to the end and never been discouraged, even in the toughest moments. I hope you can call me brother, because I’ll never fail you, as you never failed me.

This time, the 9th of April has come again and in what way! The powers of darkness and evil are trying to stifle my candle with their foul breaths but this time I'm alive and free and I will face them, and I will lit it again and again …and again.

By Mohammed.

Sunday, April 11, 2004

There have been a few other versions of this, a "what if?" of pre-9/11 actions that we could have taken. This is a good one.

Bush Failed to Stop al Qaeda During Clinton Years Bastard!

Saturday, April 10, 2004

Kathleen Parker: In a parallel universe called 'what if.' Beautiful. This is undoubtedly what would have happened if all the arm chair quarterbacks could roll back time.

Friday, April 09, 2004

The TV weatherman said it was going to rain the other day but it didn’t. He lied.

Prior to Copernicus, people said that the Earth was the center of the universe and the sun revolved around it. They lied.

People in George Washington’s day said that it was not possible for man to fly and that diseases could be cured, provided that you have enough leeches. They lied too.

It wasn’t the case that they looked at the available information, considered what was believed to be true at the time, and then made decisions based on that information, which was later shown to be inaccurate. Nope. They lied.

That is the only conclusion I can come to after reading numerous letters to the editor in the Dallas Morning News and hearing similarly disposed Democrat politicians sound off about why the Bush Administration took us to war in Iraq.

As I now understand it, George W. Bush, unlike the intelligence agencies of the United States, France, Germany, Great Britain, not to mention the United Nations Special Commission on Iraq (UNSCOM) weapons inspectors, and the rest of the civilized world, somehow knew that Iraq had unilaterally disarmed without telling anyone.

Knowing that our troops faced no danger from Weapons of Mass Destruction, Bush then decided to go to war in Iraq in order to look strong and thereby enhance his chances of re-election, because the outcome of going to war is always easy to predict and was guaranteed to work in his favor politically. And Bush apparently assumed that people would calmly accept the fact that no vast stockpiles of WMD would be found and cheer him on to a glorious second term anyway. Bush knew all of this. What an evil genius.

Now some people would have you believe that Bush and the rest of his advisors looked at the available information the intelligence agencies were providing, considered the ramifications of leaving Saddam in power, and decided it was better in the long run to take him out. After all, he had stockpiled and used WMD in the past. He was supporting terrorism through payments to suicide bombers in Israel and by providing terrorist training at a place outside Baghdad called Salman Pak, where they practiced taking over airplanes with knives. Saddam was also quite efficient at filling mass graves with anyone who spoke out against him, or just knew somebody who did. And with all the oil he was sitting on he could afford to finance his activities until Uday and Qusay’s grandchildren were ready to take over.

So, either you believe that Bush looked at the available information, weighed the pros and cons of taking a drastic step like war, and decided to act against Iraq in an effort to “drain the swamp” that was breeding so much instability in the Middle East that it resulted in 9/11; or you believe Bush is an evil, yet moronic, simian sock puppet who was somehow able to convince Tony Blair and John Howard of Australia (not to mention about 50 other countries) to set aside their own national interests and go into Iraq along with us for no other reasons than Bush’s re-election and to somehow enrich his friends in the oil and construction industries. Those seem to be the choices.

Thanks to all the people who write in to the Dallas Morning News letters page and heroes like Sen. Teddy Kennedy I know now what to believe. Next, I’d like to learn from these clear thinkers how we never really landed on the moon and how O.J. Simpson was framed.

Swatting at flies More on the revisionist history going on in Washington:

Critics who fault Bush for being pre-emptive on Iraq do not hesitate to fault Bush for not being pre-emptive when it came to attacks that were unexpected and unimagined. Some behave as if they believe the president is supposed to be a superhero who can smell threats, including risks that intelligence staffers haven't been able to pinpoint.

I can just imagine the reaction if we had announced that we were going to invade Afghanistan prior to 9/11 in order to overthrow the Taliban. Or announced a version of the Patriot Act. The Dems would have collectively peed in their pants.

As the saying goes, this (Iraq) will get worse before it gets better. We're still in a war and I hope we fight like it. From the NY Post:

But we can't afford to stop too soon - as we did in Desert Storm and at the close of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Quitting before the enemy is finished has been a tragic American pattern. Don't worry about al-Jazeera's coverage or what the Saudis think. Just keep killing the enemy.

The Intelligence Mess: How It Happened, What to Do About It An excellent piece about intelligence, how and why it failed on 9/11, and the results. It's long but worth reading. It also discusses the insane push to repeal the Patriot Act:

This bipartisan Senate cabal (led by Democrats Patrick Leahy, Richard Durbin, and Harry Reid and Republicans Larry Craig and John Sununu) wants not only to terminate the FISA sharing provisions but to end the sharing of grand-jury information; to restrict the information that intelligence agencies may obtain from communications-service providers (the same kind of information long available to criminal investigators probing health-care fraud and gambling); and effectively to destroy the valuable "sneak-and-peak" search warrant (another longstanding tool in ordinary criminal investigations) that allows agents, with court approval, to search a location for intelligence purposes but not to seize anything, thus keeping the targets unaware. No doubt, the next time something goes boom, these Senators and their myriad sympathizers will be among the first to wail about unconnected dots.

Thursday, April 08, 2004

ginmar: The Alamo is over-rated as a tourist attraction, dammit Here's an incredible description of combat currently going on, written by a female soldier. Jesus, she was right in the thick of it yet is ineligible for a Combat Infantryman's Badge, because "women aren't in combat." Riiight.

Condoleezza Rice & 9/11 Commission This little dog and pony show keeps getting worse. Now I can see why Bush was reluctant to set it up in the first place.

President Roosevelt waited until after World War II to put in place a commission to investigate what mistakes led to Pearl Harbor. That was a wise move, but then Roosevelt did not face the kind of hyper-partisanship that plagues America these days. (Washington Post columnist David Broder recently pointed out that when FDR ran for reelection during World War II, he emphasized his record as a war leader. Broder might have added that FDR's Republican opponent, Thomas Dewey, declined to criticize the president in regard to foreign policy during a time of war. It's almost hard to believe that there was a time when Americans knew the difference between their foreign enemies and their political adversaries.)

I don't remember the family members of the Oklahoma City bombing coming on TV to criticize the Clinton Administration, nor the survivors of the first WTC attack. When did they obtain special expertise in intelligence and foreign policy planning?

There are some things that happen in Texas that just wouldn't happen somewhere else. This is one of them. It's about the guy running for a GOP seat in the Texas legislature...who likes to get dressed up. Right pretty like.

Jim, a farmer in his late 60s who would give only his first name, said he couldn't vote for a cross-dresser.

"You couldn't get a dress on me if you hog-tied me, and I might hold a woman's purse for a minute but I wouldn't carry it around very long, and most men feel the same way," said Jim, who lives just south of Burleson.

But in a town made famous for its prosecution of Joanne Webb -- awaiting trial after selling sex toys to undercover cops -- what's striking is the tolerance voters are showing.

"Everybody has their past. Clinton smoked pot. Bush had his problems with the military," said Casey King, a Burleson mother watching her toddler, Caleb, play in the McDonald's play area Wednesday. "But if I thought he was still cross-dressing, I wouldn't vote for him."

That's ol' Sam, on the right.

Victor Davis Hanson on War on Terror As usual, another great piece from VDH. This in particular:

Then we have the creepy outbursts from commentators and screams from Democratic senators. We are told by Senator Graham that we smashed al Qaeda only to discover that we had hit a mercury-like substance that now has hopelessly scattered. Well, yes, that is what happens when you strike back in war. The alternative? Allow this elemental terrorism to remain cohesive and united? War is not a decision between good and bad choices, but almost always between something bad and something worse — and so it really is preferable to have toxic mercury scattered than to have it concentrated and pure.

I'd say that sums it up well. Our choices weren't between good and bad, but between bad and worse.

I just had to post this comment from the ever so eloquent Democrat candidate for President, John F. Kerry. It's from an interview he did on NPR a couple days ago:

Bob Edwards: "President Bush says Sadr's defiance can't stand. What should the U.S. do?"

Kerry: "Well, ahh, huh, it's interesting to hear that, when they shut the newspaper that belongs to a legitimate voice in Iraq, and, well, let me change the term legitimate --when they shut a newspaper that belongs to a voice, because he has clearly taken on a far more radical tone in recent days, and aligned himself with both Hamas and Hezbollah, which is a sort of terrorist alignment, so it creates its own set of needs in order to deal with the possible future spread of terrorism. But at the same time, if its unaccompanied by a broader set of moves to try and broaden our own base in Iraq, um, I just think it asks for great difficulties.

What the HELL does any of that mean? And to think they make fun of Bush for being less than handy with the English language.

John McCain on Iraq & Vietnam Just when I was about to write McCain off for good, he goes and hits one out of the park. I really don't know what to make of the guy. One day he might as well join the Democrat Party, the next day he gives a speech like this. He's a real mixed bag.

Mark Steyn again on the luancy at large in the Democrat Party. He refers to the comments at the Daily Kos gloating over the deaths of the four security guards and asks what ever happened to Democrats, specifically those who used to support national security issues:

That kind of Democrat has all but vanished from view. In the past two and a half years, a virus has advanced through the party. It’s easy to dismiss the fellows at Democratic Underground (another site linked to by John Kerry), where the desecrated bodies had the loony Left high-fiving: ‘Death to ALL mercenaries. The beer is on me.’ But then you go back to the senator’s page and below the announcement deploring Mr Zuniga’s ‘unacceptable statement’ are hundreds of comments from Kerry supporters denouncing their man for being such a gutless wimp as to distance himself from the Screw-The-Dead-Mercenaries approach. ‘Greed is Irak’s most vicious enemy, and sensorship is America’s most vicious anemy at this hour in history,’ warns Barbara Curbelo Cusack, who writes like a middle-school teacher. ‘Go home and wash the piss out of your trousers,’ sneers Meyer from St Pete. ‘Howard Dean helped you get a spine.’ More pertinently, K.M. Thurman asks Kerry what he’s going to do with the $48,500 he raised through the Daily Kos site.

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

A fantastic book review and anti-anti-American blast at the leftoids.

This was too funny not to post:

Quote of the Day

"The fact is, President Clinton approved every snatch that he was ever asked to review."

--Against All Enemies: Inside America's War on Terror by Richard A. Clarke (Page 145)

A War President's Job George Will on the mess in Iraq. And what a mess it is too. We are finally involved the house to house fighting that was predicted in Baghdad last year. While it may not be a general uprising it sure isn't good news:

A U.S. official in Baghdad accurately insists that the violent insurgency involves "a minuscule percentage" of the 25 million Iraqis. However, history usually is made not by majorities but by intense minorities. Remember 1917, and this from Richard Pipes's "The Russian Revolution": "The Bolshevik triumph in October was accomplished nine-tenths psychologically: the forces involved were negligible, a few thousand men at most in a nation of one hundred and fifty million." There may have been fewer Bolsheviks than there are members of Sadr's militia, which is one of many. The cancellation last weekend of a Baghdad trade fair was symbolic of the ability of a minuscule minority to sow chaos sufficient to prevent a majority from attending to mundane matters.

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

Who pays the taxes? The Evil Rich, that's who! This of course will be ignored by the "tax cuts only went to his rich friends" crowd.

It's nice to see something like this in the New Republic. By pointing out the holes in a recent New York Time magazine article about "new source review," it discusses how air quality has consistently gotten better over the years, including the George W. Bush years. For example:

Where the distortion enters is in what's not said. First, the impression is given is that new-source review is the guts of the Clean Air Act, when in fact it's a secondary provision, governing only a small fraction of total air emission sources. Second and much more important, trends involving pollutants governed by the Clean Air Act are positive and have continued to be positive under George W. Bush. (Greenhouse gases, where trends are negative, are not governed by the Clean Air Act or by any law.) Aggregate air emissions, everything rolled into one, have declined 25 percent since 1970, though the population has risen 39 percent in the same period. The Times Magazine cover and article give the impression that air pollution is getting worse when in fact it's in significant decline: about half as much, per capita, as in 1970.

That is obvious in Phoenix. When I movecd there in 1982 there were more than 100 days of air quality violations every winter. In the past five years or so I bet we've had no more than five total.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Private Guards Repel Attack on U.S. Headquarters This is strange. A private army fighting along side American troops. They seem to be doing a good job, which is not surprising considering that they are former Special Forces. Still it is something we've not done before.

A bill full of pork This is disgraceful. There is now officially no real difference between Democrats and Republicans once they get into Congress. I am all for transportation spending but this bill is so bad I bet they could cut it in half and not touch any of the real transportation projects. It's hard to have any hope when the Republicans control all the levers of government and it not only doesn't make things better, it arguably makes things worse.

The addiction is bipartisan, thanks to the policy of the House's reigning king of pork. While House Transportation Committee Chairman Don Young has packed the bill with money for his state of Alaska, he makes sure Democrats are allocated their share of money for roads and other goodies in order to build a bipartisan majority on the floor.

Young is careful to fund the pet project of Rep. James Oberstar of Minnesota, the Transportation Committee's senior Democrat. The bill establishes Oberstar's proposed Safe Routes to School program, earmarking $1 billion to enable and encourage children to walk and bicycle to school.

As opposed to what exactly? Driving themselves? Flying?

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Houston surgeons to help mutilated Iraqis Nah, it was all about the oil.

More on Saddam's links to terrorism from Lori Mylroie. Saddam was all over the first WTC attack, it wouldn't surprise me to find that he was deeply involved in 9/11.

Friday, April 02, 2004

For some reason I wasn't able to blog the Chris Hitchens article from today's WSJ. It's too good to miss though so I copied it and paste it below:

A reminder of what the future might look like if we fail.

Friday, April 2, 2004 12:01 a.m. EST

There must be a temptation, when confronted with the Dantesque scenes from Fallujah, to surrender to something like existential despair. The mob could have cooked and eaten its victims without making things very much worse. One especially appreciated the detail of the heroes who menaced the nurses, when they came to try and remove the charred trophies.

But this "Heart of Darkness" element is part of the case for regime-change to begin with. A few more years of Saddam Hussein, or perhaps the succession of his charming sons Uday and Qusay, and whole swathes of Iraq would have looked like Fallujah. The Baathists, by playing off tribe against tribe, Arab against Kurd and Sunni against Shiite, were preparing the conditions for a Hobbesian state of affairs. Their looting and beggaring of the state and the society--something about which we now possess even more painfully exact information--was having the same effect. A broken and maimed and traumatized Iraq was in our future no matter what.

Obviously, this prospect could never have been faced with equanimity. Iraq is a regional keystone state with vast resources and many common borders. Its implosion would have created a black hole, sucking in rival and neighboring powers, tempting them with opportunist interventions and encouraging them to find ethnic and confessional proxies. And who knows what the death-throes of the regime would have been like? We are entitled, on past experience, to guess. There could have been deliberate conflagrations started in the oilfields. There might have been suicidal lunges into adjacent countries. The place would certainly have become a playground for every kind of nihilist and fundamentalist. The intellectual and professional classes, already gravely attenuated, would have been liquidated entirely.

All of this was, only just, averted. And it would be a Pangloss who said that the dangers have receded even now. But at least the international intervention came before the whole evil script of Saddam's crime family had been allowed to play out. A subsequent international intervention would have been too little and too late, and we would now being holding an inquest into who let this happen--who in other words permitted in Iraq what Bill Clinton and Madeleine Albright and Kofi Annan permitted in Rwanda, encouraged by the Elysée.

Prescience, though, has now become almost punishable. Thanks in part to Richard Clarke's showmanship (and to the crass ineptitude of the spokesmen for the Bush administration) it is widely considered laughable to have even thought about an Iraqi threat. Given Saddam's record in both using and concealing weapons of mass destruction, and given his complicity--at least according to Mr. Clarke--with those who bombed the World Trade Center in 1993 and with those running Osama bin Laden's alleged poison factory in Sudan, any president who did not ask about a potential Baathist link to terrorism would be impeachably failing in his duty.

It's becoming more and more plain that the moral high ground is held by those who concluded, from the events of 1991, that it was a mistake to leave Saddam Hussein in power after his eviction from Kuwait. However tough that regime-change might have been, it would have spared the lives of countless Iraqis and begun the process of nation-rebuilding with 12 years' advantage, and before most of the awful damage wrought by the sanctions-plus-Saddam "solution." People like Paul Wolfowitz are even more sinister than their mocking foes believe. They were against Saddam Hussein not just in September 2001 but as far back as the 1980s. (James Mann's excellent book "Rise of the Vulcans," greatly superior to Richard Clarke's, will I hope not be eclipsed by it. It contains an account that every serious person should ponder.)

I debate with the opponents of the Iraq intervention almost every day. I always have the same questions for them, which never seem to get answered. Do you believe that a confrontation with Saddam Hussein's regime was inevitable or not? Do you believe that a confrontation with an Uday/Qusay regime would have been better? Do you know that Saddam's envoys were trying to buy a weapons production line off the shelf from North Korea (vide the Kay report) as late as last March? Why do you think Saddam offered "succor" (Mr. Clarke's word) to the man most wanted in the 1993 bombings in New York? Would you have been in favor of lifting the "no fly zones" over northern and southern Iraq; a 10-year prolongation of the original "Gulf War"? Were you content to have Kurdish and Shiite resistance fighters do all the fighting for us? Do you think that the timing of a confrontation should have been left, as it was in the past, for Baghdad to choose?

I hope I do not misrepresent my opponents, but their general view seems to be that Iraq was an elective target; a country that would not otherwise have been troubling our sleep. This ahistorical opinion makes it appear that Saddam Hussein was a new enemy, somehow chosen by shady elements within the Bush administration, instead of one of the longest-standing foes with which the United States, and indeed the international community, was faced. So, what about the "bad news" from Iraq? There was always going to be bad news from there. Credit belongs to those who accepted--can we really decently say pre-empted?--this long-term responsibility. Fallujah is a reminder, not just of what Saddamism looks like, or of what the future might look like if we fail, but of what the future held before the Coalition took a hand.

A remarkable story that has been ignored. Why hasn't the Bush Admin made more of what we have found? I really don't get it. Like this for example:

One of the reported incidents occurred near Karbala where there appeared to be a very large “agricultural supply” area of 55-gallon drums of pesticide. In addition, there was also a camouflaged bunker complex full of these drums that some people entered with unpleasant results. More than a dozen soldiers, a Knight-Ridder reporter, a CNN cameraman, and two Iraqi POWs came down with symptoms consistent with exposure to nerve agent. A full day of tests on the drums resulted in one positive for nerve agent, and then one resulted in a negative. Later, an Army Fox NBC [nuclear, biological, chemical] Recon Vehicle confirmed the existence of Sarin. An officer from the 63d Chemical Company thought there might well be chemical weapons at the site.

But later ISG tests resulted in a proclamation of negative, end of story, nothing to see here, etc., and the earlier findings and injuries dissolved into non-existence. Left unexplained is the small matter of the obvious pains taken to disguise the cache of ostensibly legitimate pesticides. One wonders about the advantage an agricultural commodities business gains by securing drums of pesticide in camouflaged bunkers six feet underground. The “agricultural site” was also co-located with a military ammunition dump, evidently nothing more than a coincidence in the eyes of the ISG.

Phony Apology CK really dislikes Dick Clarke, and after that bullshit apology why wouldn't he?

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Mark Steyn on why the NGOs and UN have bailed out of Iraq when it hasn't done so in more dangerous places like West Africa.

What’s different is the political agenda. The humanitarian touring circuit is now the oldest established permanent floating crap game. Regions such as West Africa, where there’s no pretence anything will ever get better, or the Balkans, which are maintained by the UN as the global equivalent of a slum housing project, suit the aid agencies perfectly: there’s never not a need for them. But in Iraq they’ve decided they’re not interested in staying to see the electric grid back up to capacity and the water system improved if it’s an American administration at the helm. The Big Consciences have made a political decision: that it’s not in their interest for the Bush crowd to succeed, and that calculation outweighs any concern they might have for the Iraqi people.

Editorial: Savagery From the Arab News no less. Interesting.

Haaretz - Israel News - The lesson of Iraq What happened to WMD from an Israeli paper. This was interesting:

At the Tuwaitha nuclear facility, for example, American soldiers found drums of uranium oxide ("yellowcake"). They did not take their discovery seriously enough, and the Iraqi peasants poured the sludge into the river and turned the drums into water containers. It is strange that all the investigations of the regime heads have not revealed this type of concealment. Could it be that the investigations have not been professional enough?

What the hell is that about? We found yellowcake but didn't say anything?

Another devastating blast at Richard Clarke. Does anyone still believe he's a "hero" ?

Lileks always has a way of cutting through the bullshit loose in the world. Another great one.

Heather McDonald on privacy and the loony approach privacy fetishists have taken in fighting improvements in screening and intelligence. Apparently mass death is the price we pay for living in a free society.