Showing posts from April, 2004
Thai Muslims whine about dead terrorist The Scotsman: "THAI troops stepped up the hunt for thousands of Islamic militants as fear and anger spread across the south of the country in the wake of the killing on Wednesday of 108 insurgents wielding guns and machetes. " 'The people are upset and angry,' said Yosoff Samail, 60, the head cleric at the central mosque in the town of Pattani, where troops with rocket-propelled grenades and tear gas stormed another mosque and killed more than 30 insurgents inside. " 'They want to know why the army killed those in the mosque. Why did they use heavy weapons? Why didn?t they ask the chief Islamic leader what to do?' he said after Friday prayers attended by more than 1,000 worshippers, many spilling onto the streets." A look at life through whine colored glases. Muslims would get more sympathy if they would stop taking the side of murderous thugs who want to make everyone else as miserable as the
Interesting headline in NY Times Kerry Says Iraq Lies at 'Moment of Truth'
Marines to leave Falluja Reports that Marines will turn over Falluja to an Iraqi unit are troubling. The rational for the move is that Marines killing inurgents makes for bad politics in Iraq. It may, but their is something more important at stake in Falluja. To defeat the terrorist, the US must utterly destroy them. They must show that they have no hope. Unless this Iraqi unit does that, then the move will be a great mistake. It is to be expected that Arabs will whine about "civilian" casualties in a Marine operation in Falluja. But people who are shooting at Marines are not civilians, they are unlawful combatants wearing civilian clothes and hiding among civilians. The politics of giving the Iraqis a chance to control Falluja is risky at best. One risk is that the Marines will have to go back in at a less opportune time. That could make for political risks in this country.
Muted reaction to UN scandal Melanie Phillips: ... "Reaction in Britain has been muted, not despite the vast implications of this scandal but because of them. For in the current obscene climate of inverted moral values, the UN is not seen for what it is — a corrupt, incompetent and terror-promoting organisation — but is regarded instead as the fount of order, morality and civilised values. "The revolting diplomats doubtless think the fact that Iraq is about to be delivered into the hands of the UN is its last chance. Yet this is akin to putting Dracula in charge of the blood bank. "Take the recent remarks by Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN’s special representative for Iraq who has the diplomats’ approval. There was no doubt, he opined, that ‘the great poison in the region is this Israeli policy of domination and the suffering imposed on the Palestinians…’ "On the contrary, the great poison in the region is the UN. Mr Brahimi’s vicious distortion merely r
It is about more than just Fallujah Victor Davis Hanson "We are presently engaged in a world war for our civilization and its vision of a just and humane society. Our values will either endure this present struggle and indeed be invigorated by the ordeal, or like once great civilizations of the past we will stumble in the face of barbarism and lose all that we hold dear. Across the world in places as diverse as Madrid, Fallujah, Kandahar, Thailand, Amman, and Bali agents of intolerance and religious fascism seek to terrorize and thereby eventually destroy the promise of a free and tolerant mankind. We must be as determined to defeat them as they are to destroy us. ... "Make no mistake: As we learned on September 11, our enemies do not merely disagree with us. They demand our very destruction for what we believe and who we are. Against savages who knock down skyscrapers and blow up innocents, we understandably speak of a war against terror. Indeed we are fighting
Iran may be looking for a shipping container for their nuke Strategy Page: "Despite promises to halt nuclear weapons development, Iran's Islamic conservatives are moving ahead, trying to develop a working nuclear bomb as quickly as possible. With what is now known of Pakistani weapons experts secretly selling nuclear weapons technology to countries like Iran, it's quite possible that Iran will have an atomic bomb within a year, if not a few months. It is not known which atomic bomb designs Pakistan sold to Iran, but it was probably the more primitive ones. That means a rather large and bulky nuclear bomb. This would not be suitable for use on a long range missile, but could be carried by an aircraft, or put in a shipping container. Millions of these seagoing shipping containers enter the United States each year...."
The Counterterroism Intelligence Group Frank Gaffney: ... "Incredibly, the Times article, by reporter James Risen, reveals that the U.S. intelligence community — which not only vehemently disagreed with the work done by the Counterterrorism Evaluation Group, but tried assiduously to impede it — still 'largely dismiss[es]' what the author describes (somewhat inaccurately, as the above quote makes clear) as 'the Pentagon view of an increasingly unified terrorist threat or links between Mr. Hussein and Mr. bin Laden.' "This position seems utterly untenable, given just the information in the public domain — to say nothing of what must be available in classified channels. For example, on April 26, ABC News aired part of a videotaped confession by suspected al Qaeda terrorist Azmi al-Jayousi, who was captured before he could unleash a devastating chemical attack in Jordan. Al-Jayousi admitted that he was trained in Iraq by al Qaeda deputy Abu Musab al-
Muslims need a reality check Amir Taheri: ... "Few in the Muslim world would understand why their leaders had to rush to convene a summit because of Rantissi's assassination. All Islamic governments have already registered their anger at the 'targeted killing.' Another condemnatory resolution is unlikely to get anyone any further. "And people might wonder: Why didn't the OIC call for a summit when 8,000 Muslim men and boys were murdered by the Serbs in Bosnia-Herzegovina? Why hasn't it held a single session on Chechnya - where, these past four years, 50 times as many Chechen Muslims have been killed as Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza? "Indeed, don't we in the Muslim world have other pressing problems that merit emergency summits? Hunger, poverty, illiteracy, the absence of law and order, corruption, lack of basic human rights and freedoms and the prospect of spiraling terror? "Shouldn't Muslim leaders meet to de
The Marine's Spirit of America Dan Henniger: ... "This is a remarkable story of can-do. I think it is also the story of a nation willing to do more than it has been asked by the Bush administration. It is about the need for an Iraqi homefront. "The column describing Spirit of America's effort to raise $100,000 for the TV stations appeared in this space 14 days ago. Since then, the following has happened: "Jim Hake, Spirit of America's entrepreneur founder, says they have received $1.52 million. Some 7,000 donations have come from every state, and one from . . . France. "Mr. Hake purchased all the needed equipment and had suppliers ship directly to Camp Pendleton. Federal Express donated domestic shipping costs. "Stanley Hubbard at Hubbard Broadcasting Inc. in Minnesota has offered several hundred thousand dollars in state of the art digital television equipment. That equipment would provide satellite uplink and downlink capabi
Wilson now admits that Baghdad Bob tried to buy yellow cake in Niger in 1999 Susan Schmidt, Washington Post: "It was Saddam Hussein's information minister, Mohammed Saeed Sahhaf, often referred to in the Western press as 'Baghdad Bob,' who approached an official of the African nation of Niger in 1999 to discuss trade -- an overture the official saw as a possible effort to buy uranium. ... "In his book, Wilson recounts his encounter with the unnamed Niger official in 2002, saying, he 'hesitated and looked up to the sky as if plumbing the depths of his memory, then offered that perhaps the Iraqi might have wanted to talk about uranium.' Wilson did not get the Iraqi's name in 2002, but he writes that he talked to his source again four months ago, and that the former official said he saw Sahhaf on television before the start of the war and recognized him as the person he talked to in 1999." Why did Wilson try to mislead people about t
Disgraceful Dems From a World War II Marine: "Not one Marine returned home to denounce the war, accuse fellow Marines of massive atrocities, and attack the president for bad intelligence and lying to the people. We just gritted our teeth and finished the job. ... "The behavior of the Democrat opposition today is disgraceful and presents to the world a spectacle of national disunity that gives aid and comfort to our enemies. It ought to be an affront to every patriotic American."
Dems want to refight 30 year old war Wesley Pruden: "Monsieur Kerry has foolishly fallen into the trap of trying to make a war that ended 30 years ago his signature issue. His Democratic surrogates, unlikely war buffs all, fondly recall the heady days of the Vietnam quagmire and imagine they can reprise the war in Iraq as a humiliation for America, which can then be translated into Democratic victory in November."
Arguments for perpetual terror Charles Krauthammer: ... "To argue that neither Israel nor the United States can act in the absence of negotiations is to give the Palestinians, by continuing the terror, a veto over any constructive actions by the United States or Israel — whether disengaging from Gaza, uprooting settlements or establishing conditions for a final peace settlement that would ensure the survival of a Jewish state. This is an argument of singular absurdity. And a prescription for perpetual violence and perpetual stalemate."
Euros finally decide killing Jews is wrong Mathew Schofield, Knight Ridder: "Seven decades after Nazis exterminated millions of Jews, representatives of 55 nations meeting in the German capital condemned a recent European resurgence in anti-Semitism. "The Berlin Declaration came at the close of a two-day Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe conference, which was held in the former Nazi Central Bank building. U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell addressed the conference on Wednesday. "While the declaration condemned 'without reserve all manifestations of anti-Semitism,' many of those at the conference were disturbed that it ignored sources of anti-Jewish sentiment." Let's see, ethnic hatred of Jews is condemed without reservation, but some members are antsy about "root causes" such as the existance of Israel.
Terror attacks at lowest point in 30 years in 2003 CNN: "International acts of terror in 2003 were the fewest in more than 30 years, according to the U.S. State Department's annual terrorism report released Thursday. "The Patterns of Global Terrorism report said 190 acts of international terrorism occurred in 2003 -- a slight drop from 198 attacks the previous year and the lowest total since 1969. "The figure marked a 45 percent decrease in attacks since 2001, but it did not include most of the attacks in Iraq, because attacks against combatants did not fit the U.S. definition of international terrorism. "Cofer Black, the State Department's ambassador at large for counterterrorism, told a news conference that he attributed the decrease to 'unprecedented collaboration between the United States and foreign partners to defeat terrorism.' " It would appear that Iraq, rather than being a diversion from the war on terror has divert
Gitmo prisoners released are back with Taliban Newsweek" ... "...administration officials tell NEWSWEEK that military intelligence has identified at least three additional 'revolving door' cases of Gitmo detainees' returning to the battlefield. One released prisoner, Mullah Shehzada, is serving as a 'senior' Taliban commander. The officials say that alarming development?as well as information developed about four released detainees sent back to Britain?shows that the Gitmo population is far more dangerous than most of the public understands. Administration officials are especially aghast over the released British prisoners, who U.S. intelligence says are hardened Islamic extremists trained in urban warfare and assassination techniques at Qaeda camps before 9/11; one of them met several times with Osama bin Laden. 'Rumsfeld has really been flagging this one hard in interagency meetings?that we need to be careful about who gets released,'
Sadr under attack The Scotman: "FOR the past month they have been the rude young pretenders, a rag-tag slum army ruffling the quiet dignity of Iraq?s holiest city. "For every day that the United States army fails to act on its threat to crush them, the Shiite militiamen of the radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr have grown in confidence in their stronghold in Najaf. "Now, however, a shadowy resistance movement within might be about to succeed where the 2,500 US marines outside the city have failed. "In a deadly expression of feelings that until now were kept quiet, a group representing local residents is said to have killed at least five militiamen in the last four days. "The murders are the first sign of organised Iraqi opposition to Sadr?s presence and come amid simmering discontent at the havoc their lawless presence has wreaked." There are no Marines outside of Najaf. The troops there are Army units. The most likely source of the an
Globe pounding Lileks: ... " Ah, Fallujah. Peaceful, verdant Fallujah. City of Gardens. City of Perfumed Alleys, the Mesopotamian Eden. One day a quiet happy burg of peace, the next a victim of American overbearance. From the Boston Globe, a lede by Thanassis Cambanis: 'U.S. warplanes fired on Iraqi insurgents Tuesday in Fallujah in strikes that shattered a fragile cease-fire negotiated over a week ago.' "Got that? We had a nice cease-fire going, and for no reason U.S. warplanes went and shattered it without provocation. I just stopped reading right there." They must have run out of mosques to attack.
What about the last 34 years Senator? Collin Levey: ... "The public is more committed to the task in Iraq than the media are, and they know experience is important now. Kerry is trying to provide that, but he never will create momentum with such a backward-looking strategy. Speaking recently from the Kerry campaign trail, Vietnam veteran and former senator Max Cleland remarked that, 'The Bush campaign is trying to define Kerry now, but for my money the defining moment is 35 years ago.' Now if we could just get a straight answer on the 34 years since."
Observations in Falluja Belmont Club: ... "But the physical fragility of the enemy redoubt may perhaps is the single reason the USMC might not need to assault the area at all, except in its most final, weakened stages. The battle for this urban maze will be largely a battle for line of sight as it probably has been from the beginning. The press reportage of USMC sniper-spotter teams has mentioned but not emphasized the fact that they possess imaging devices, comms and computers (and probably range finders) apart from their rifles. Their most damaging function has perhaps not been shooting (although that has been bad enough) as much as observation. One can almost imagine enemy movements being correlated from several observers onto a very detailed intel map. The physical characteristics of Fallujah, but especially the lightly built 'Golan' means that enemy safety depends utterly on visual concealment, not reinforced concrete fortification. Once an enemy position i
"The truth is..." Steven den Beste: ... "For instance, The Truth Is... that 'liberals' who suddenly have started talking about reintroducing the draft are not in the slightest concerned with military readiness, and do not believe that filling out the army with draftees is an essential step in winning the war. What's actually going on is that they know that one of the biggest reasons that the people of America ultimately turned against the Viet Nam war was because it was being fought primarily by draftees. And one of the biggest reasons why America's college campuses were particular focal points for anti-war activism was because it was men that age who were being drafted. "Said liberals, usually graying Boomers like me, are amazed at the degree to which college-age Americans support this war. They feel somehow cheated; colleges are supposed to be anti-war, aren't they? Of course, there are many critical differences between Viet Nam a
Importance of Kerry's medal flap Jeff Jacoby: "IF JOHN KERRY hadn't already clinched the Democratic presidential nomination, his medals meltdown on 'Good Morning America' this week would have sunk his campaign. Much as Howard Dean's crazed 'I Have A Scream' speech jolted voters into wondering whether someone so hotheaded should be allowed anywhere near the nuclear trigger, Kerry's abusive tirade on ABC gave millions of viewers a foretaste of how far presidential discourse will sink if Kerry becomes president. "Not one voter in 100 would vote against Kerry for trashing his Vietnam War medals when he was 27 years old. What he did with his combat decorations in 1971 has no bearing on whether he is fit to be president today. That long-ago episode is an issue today only because Kerry's versions of it have changed so many times and because it so perfectly typifies his lifelong habit of saying one thing today and something else tomorrow
The Laut's meldown Hugh Hewitt: ... "How to explain the Lautenberg melt-down? Well, many, many callers and e-mailers who heard me play the speech think he was drunk. I don't. I think he is acting in concert with a desperate Kerry campaign. But Lautenberg, like Kerry, has zero understanding of the American people. They have breathed deep the swamp gas, and they have become as unbalanced as Dean. This is the party we are going to trust to rally the country to pursue a war to victory?..."
Dems respond to substantive criticism with insults Sen. Frank Lautenberg responded to Vice President Cheney's critque of Sen. Kerry's national security record by calling Cheney a "chickenhawk." Democrats are so desperate they are confusing insults with argument. "Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona, a decorated Vietnam veteran who spent more than four years as a prisoner of war, scolded Lautenberg for attacking the Bush administration during the Iraq conflict and said it was time to 'declare that the Vietnam War is over.' "
Kerry needs to lighten up Kerry supporter Richard Cohen says: ... "... He needs to lighten up. "I say that with a total lack of levity. My candidate is a dour man. At least that's the way he seems on TV. Sometimes he seems angry, which is not good, but most of the time he just seems gloomy. It does not help that he has a face that hardly needs to be enlarged for Mount Rushmore, but what really matters is that he seems as if he is no fun. No one would call Kerry, as FDR did Al Smith, 'the happy warrior' or discern some impishness in him. Bush has that quality and so, of course, did Bill Clinton." Kerry is a man who takes himself too seriously, but his supporters should have recognized that when the stories of his "Do you know who I am?" act when butting in lines at resturants surfaced.
Distorting Woodward's book Robert Novak: " Did President Bush really brief Prince Bandar on his Iraq war plans before he informed Colin Powell? Did the Saudi ambassador really cut a deal with the Bush administration to increase oil production in time for the presidential election? The answer to both questions is no, but those allegations entered the election-year bloodstream thanks to distortion of Bob Woodward's 'Plan of Attack.' "The crack investigative reporter's latest blockbuster does not make those allegations, but still became instant Democratic talking points, employed by presidential candidate John Kerry himself. In contrast, Woodward's revelation of Saudi Arabia's support for the Iraq invasion went virtually unmentioned."
Who would have thought it Washington Post headline: "Leaks About Foes Seen As Routine in Campaigns" The Post seems to think tht the Republican National Committee discovered Kerry's medal tape.
Poll watch Donald Lambro does a battleground state analysis that shows Kerry losing in several states that Gore carried in 2000. While the national polls show a very tight race, they are distorted by the huge lead Kerry has in California and New York. Meanwhile, the President is leading in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Oregon and trails within the margin of error in Michigan, Iowa and New Jersey.
UN refused to provide evidence to GAO on oil for food scam Interna, audits were shown only to people who may have benefited from the UN oil for food scandal. Kofi Annan seems to think the UN's supervision did not extend to preventing fraud by Iraq. Congressional republicans are considering tying US UN payments to cooperation with the GAO investigation.
More evidence that Gorelick ignored problems caused by "the wall" Washington Times: "Newly released Justice Department memos show that September 11 panel commissioner Jamie S. Gorelick was more intimately involved than previously thought with hampering communications between U.S. intelligence and law-enforcement agencies fighting terrorism. "As the No. 2 person in the Clinton Justice Department, Ms. Gorelick rejected advice from the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, who warned against placing more limits on communications between law-enforcement officials and prosecutors pursuing counterterrorism cases, according to several internal documents written in summer 1995."
Falluja Ops II Rowan Scarborough confirms strategy suggested by Prairiepundit below: "The U.S. military is using the tenuous cease-fire in Fallujah to monitor insurgent movements and then strike with air power inside the city when provoked. "The tactic is killing scores of Iraqi holdouts and their foreign allies, as U.S. forces capitalize on intelligence assets and night-vision equipment to hit enemy guerrillas when they cluster in one or two buildings. Marine Corps commanders have the authority to call in air strikes if the enemy appears to be preparing to attack, as well as when they fire. ... "The net result today is that the Marines have a large cluster of insurgents — likely 1,500 or more — bottled up in certain sectors of the city that can be monitored. If rules of engagement are met, commanders call in precision munitions from Air Force AC-130 and Cobra helicopter gunships. ... "Far from a passive stance, Lt. Gen. James T. Conway, th
Falluja ops It appears that the insurgents were not the only ones taking advantage of the "cease fire" in Falluja. Marine units have been identifying insurgent positions and when the insurgents foolishly fire on the Marines the insurgent positions are destroyed. The Spector gunship raids last night lit up the night vision scopes with two huge secondary esplosions indicating that a couple of weapons depots were hit. The insurgents are having to live off what they had in place weeks ago before the cordon was put in place. Their supplies are being used up while the Marines get daily resupply. This may be why US commanders are being so "patient" with what purport to be negotiations. No one really expects the bad guys to turn over their weapons, but time is not on their side. Each day they get weaker and have fewer forces and resources to fight with.
Saddam's agents behind attacks NY Times: "A Pentagon intelligence report has concluded that many bombings against Americans and their allies in Iraq, and the more sophisticated of the guerrilla attacks in Falluja, are organized and often carried out by members of Saddam Hussein's secret service, who planned for the insurgency even before the fall of Baghdad. "The report states that Iraqi officers of the 'Special Operations and Antiterrorism Branch,' known within Mr. Hussein's government as M-14, are responsible for planning roadway improvised explosive devices, or I.E.D.s, and some of the larger car bombs that have killed Iraqis, Americans and other foreigners. The attacks have sown chaos and fear across Iraq. "In addition, suicide bombers have worn explosives-laden vests made before the war under the direction of of M-14 officers, according to the report, prepared by the Defense Intelligence Agency. The report also cites evidence that o
Spain bomb suspect indicted for 9-11 attacks MSNBC: "A Moroccan sought in connection with last month’s Madrid train bombings was indicted Wednesday on charges of helping plan the Sept. 11 attacks. "Amer Azizi helped organize a meeting in northeast Spain in July 2001 that key plotters in the U.S. attacks, including suspect suicide pilot Mohamed Atta, used to finalize details, Judge Baltasar Garzon said. "Azizi was initially included in an indictment Garzon handed down in September against Osama bin Laden and 34 other terror suspects. Azizi was charged then with belonging to a terrorist organization."
Global warming--hot air Melanie Phillips has a devating response to a global warming advocate who writes for the Guardian. "Gratifyingly daft attack on me and others by George Monbiot in the Guardian, for our view that global warming theory is just a load of hot air. Poor Monbiot, a green catastrophist and conspiracy theorist of the first order, has obviously been brooding over what I have written about the global warming scam. Judging from his reaction, my remarks obviously hit home...." Read the whole thing. It is an April 27 entry.
Media bias aat LA Times Donald Rumsfeld: ... "There are two ways, I suppose, one could inform readers of the Geneva Convention stipulation against using places of worship to conduct military attacks. One might be to headline saying that Terrorists Attack Coalition Forces From Mosques. That would be one way to present the information. "Another might be to say: Mosques Targeted in Fallujah. That was the Los Angeles Times headline this morning."
The dump Kerry chatter Hugh Hewitt is already asking if the Dems will exercise the Torricelli option and dump Kerry. That seems pretty presumptious when you consider that Kerry is closer to Bush in the polls than Al Gore was at this point. He is a candidate with flaws but he is still within the margin of error in national polls. The reason the Democrats have such a flawed candidate is because they chose to make their primaries about George Bush rather than who would make the best President. Kerry seemed to be the best at bashing Bush while still being "electable." But, Kerry was never challenged on electibility in the primaries the way Howard Dean was. One of the things that hurt Dean, was that he at least had a coherent message. But coherent messages can become scary things for Democrats who know they cannot be elected on what they really think, so Kerry's obfuscations seemed attractive at the time. They just were never tested, until the Bush team decid
A walking contradiction Jonah Goldberg: " 'Medalgate' - the inevitable name for the flap over Kerry's flip-floppery about what he did and what he said about his medals - is an amusing spectacle to behold and a story worth investigating. "It's amusing because Kerry has forced himself to offer explanations that make pretzels look straight. It's worth investigating because Kerry has made his service in Vietnam a central qualification for his presidency. ... "Because Kerry 'flooded the zone' with every possible version of events, it's impossible for him not to contradict himself. His only defense is a screaming offense. "So, he claims that anyone who questions any aspect of his Vietnam service or his anti-Vietnam service either is questioning his patriotism or is part of the 'Republican attack machine,' including the dyed-in-the-wool liberal producers and hosts of 'Good Morning America.' Indeed, the fir
Islamo Facist do no moral second guessing over collateral damage Arnold Ahlert: " Eighty thousand people - 80,000. Men, women and children. Muslims and non-Muslims alike. All slated to be executed by a combination of explosives and chemical poison in a terrorist attack in Jordan. "This is the true nature of those we are fighting. In fact it is their greatest advantage: There is no moral second-guessing over 'collateral damage.' For the Islamo-fascist, there is no such thing as collateral damage. "To clearly comprehend what this means, imagine the United States military operating under the same circumstances. "Fallujah and Najaf? Two well-aimed nukes, end of resistance. The Tora Bora mountain range? A nuclear wasteland uninhabitable for centuries. American casualties? Virtually non-existent. "Scary? It ought to be. It's exactly the mentality of the enemy."
At last a Muslim voice of decency Steven Schwartz: " AMERICAN media and politicians rush to declare failure for the transformation of Iraq. "Sunni" atrocities in Fallujah - backed by young Saudis incited by the kingdom's Wahhabi cult to go north to the Iraqi border to kill and die in the jihad against the Coalition - and the manipulations of the Shi'a upstart Muqtada al-Sadr are treated by many in the West as the sole expression of Iraqi people facing the future. "Shi'a Muslims living in the greater New York area have a different message. They're grateful the Coalition forces liberated the shrines of Karbala and Najaf from the dictatorship of Saddam, and they look forward to modern and democratic governance in Iraq. They keep close contact with the Iraqi Shi'a leadership on the ground in the holy cities, and may be useful in defeating extremist attempts to sabotage the Iraq effort. ... "...the American Muslim Congress more f
The coalition of the honest Dick Morris: " ANYONE who pines for genuine international multilateralism would do well to follow the bribes now being uncovered in the United Nations' Oil-for- Food scandal. "Why did France and Russia oppose efforts to topple Saddam Hussein's regime? And why did they press constantly, throughout the '90s, for an expansion of Iraqi oil sales? Was it their empathy for the starving children of that impoverished nation? Their desire to stop the United States from arrogantly imposing its vision upon the Middle East? "It now looks like they it was simply because they were on the take. Saddam was their cash cow. If President Bush has suffered some discredit over his apparently false - but not disingenuous - claims of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, the lapse is minor compared to the outright personal selfishness and criminality that appears to have motivated many of those who opposed his efforts to rid the world of one o
The politics of nuance Tony Blankly: ... "His friends say he (Kerry) is just instinctively nuanced in his thinking. That may be closer to the mark. According to Webster's dictionary, the etymology of nuance is from the middle French (Hmm!) word nuer: to make shades of color, from nue: clouds, akin to the Greek, nythos: dark. That would seem to be Mr. Kerry's problem. He thinks and talks in shades that create clouds and darkness around him. No one knows what he is saying, and thus what he is thinking. This makes things rather awkward for an American politician. ... "Some cultures admire subtlety of thought and expression in their politicians. No, not just the French. The Chinese, the Hindus and the old Persian culture all admire such traits in their leaders. But the Anglo-Saxon cultures ? and pre-eminently we Americans ? admire decisiveness and clarity. We instinctively suspect deceit or indecision where we hear subtlety. We are often right to do so.
Defeating the enemy's mobile defense in Falluja Belmont Club: ... "...The enemy would prefer a linear American advance, hoping as in the case of Jenin, to mine buildings and blow them up as Americans occupy them. Not wanting to oblige, the USMC is mounting relatively small probes forcing the enemy to react. The current Marine strategy is ripping up the mobile defense. The company plus unit which attacked the platoon is probably no more. However, it will not be long before the enemy must retreat into a continuous perimeter, as his manpower dwindles to the point where a mobile defense is no longer viable. The remaining enemy forces are probably in the battalion plus range. And then the ghost of the Shuri line will rear up, in which there were no other option but to go directly into the teeth of the defense. The density of the defense displayed in the recent encounter may mean that time is near. "The important thing to know now, and Marine commanders are probab
Is al Qaeda planning its attacks using out of date maps and phone books? The headline in the Washington Post reads, "Gunmen Attack Former U.N. Office in Syria." Last week al Qeda attacked the former headquarters of Saudi intelligence in Ryadh. Whe attacked it just a police substation. The next thing you know they will be attacking the Chinese embassy by mistake.
WMD found: Kenneth Timmerman, Insight: "New evidence out of Iraq suggests that the U.S. effort to track down Saddam Hussein's missing weapons of mass destruction (WMD) is having better success than is being reported. Key assertions by the intelligence community that were widely judged in the media and by critics of President George W. Bush as having been false are turning out to have been true after all. But this stunning news has received little attention from the major media, and the president's critics continue to insist that 'no weapons' have been found. "In virtually every case - chemical, biological, nuclear and ballistic missiles - the United States has found the weapons and the programs that the Iraqi dictator successfully concealed for 12 years from U.N. weapons inspectors. "The Iraq Survey Group (ISG), whose intelligence analysts are managed by Charles Duelfer, a former State Department official and deputy chief of the U.N.-led arm
Al Qaeda attacks in Syria Telegraph: "Suspected al-Qa'eda gunmen launched co-ordinated attacks on a diplomatic district of Damascus last night, sparking a fierce battle with security forces on the streets of the Syrian capital. "Explosions and gunfire were heard close to the British ambassador's residence in the Mazzeh district that houses several embassies, while a building formerly housing United Nations offices was set alight. "Unconfirmed reports from witnesses said that masked men fired two rocket-propelled grenades at the former mission, setting it on fire. They are then said to have sprayed gunfire in all directions with assault rifles. ... "One local resident said that after the terrorists opened fire, a police car rushed to the scene and itself came under attack. The police returned fire and reinforcements, including plainclothes security forces, soon arrived. In the ensuing shoot-out, one of the two cars used by the assailants b
"Right wing fiction" Washington Times: ... "But as late as yesterday, Mr. Kerry's presidential campaign was tinkering with how to word its explanation of Mr. Kerry's war-medal toss. "In the campaign Web site's 'D-Bunker' section, which aims to set 'the record straight' about him, staffers have been updating the section on the 'right-wing fiction' that 'John Kerry threw away his medals during a Vietnam war protest.' "Last week's explanation was: 'John Kerry is proud of the work he did to end the Vietnam war. ... John Kerry threw his ribbons and the medals of two veterans who could not attend the event. ...' "Over the weekend, staffers added the clause, 'he has been consistent about the facts and symbolism of the medal-returning ceremony.' That whole clause since has been removed from the D-Bunker section. " 'Only the Kerry campaign would find it n
Dems go negative Jesse Jackson says Kerry cannot afford to go negative. So Jackson goes negative for him. What a hypocrit.
Italians defy Iraqi kidnappers "Italy's government and opposition leaders refused on Tuesday to bow to demands by kidnappers in Iraq who have threatened to kill three hostages unless Italians protest against their country's military presence there."
Reenacting the medal toss Scrapleface parody: ... "I've carefully stored my medals all these years," said Mr. Kerry. "I was waiting for the right moment to bring them out and show America how I actually tossed them over the White House fence to demonstrate my disgust with an administration that sent me overseas to commit war crimes. Therefore, I'm proud of my service in Vietnam, which helped to make me into the leader I am today...and the next president of the United States."
Inverting history Melanie Phillips: "The advanced state of Britain's utter moral bankruptcy is on vivid display today with the publication of the scream of venomous outrage by 52 ex-diplomats against Tony Blair's backing for George Bush over Iraq and Blair's failure to rein him in over his support for Israel. Their letter speaks volumes for the rancid prejudice which animates so much of the British foreign policy mandarinate, and has now unfortunately influenced the attitude of so much of the population. "It is revealing that the diplomats not only link the issues of Israel/Palestine and Iraq, but give the former priority among their concerns. This reflects the view in such circles that Israel, and specifically their perception that Israel is frustrating the creation of a Palestinian state, lies at the root of global terror and that toppling Saddam Hussein was not only therefore the wrong issue but only made Israel/Palestine worse. This analysis is to i
Tactical acuman? Lileks on the Jordian plot: ... "...(These) guys lack the tactical acumen. They have several goals: first, get the US out of the region. Second, destroy all the regional governments they don?t like. Third, conquer the world. If they were as crafty and canny as feared they?d take these steps in the proper order, but they appear to want to do #1 and #2 simultaneously, which is remarkably stupid. The US, in response to terror attacks in Iraq, will carefully attempt to convert the miscreants to jam, if that?s what it comes down to. But if the Al Qaeda et al hits Saudi Arabia and Jordon before achieving the first objective, they just get more grief: Arab governments are less likely to play nice. They?re more likely to disappear huge numbers of people, raze villages, apply cheese graters to your scalp to get confessions, etc. Your average Jordanian may be passively rooting for American defeat out of the usual stupid sense of solidarity, but take out 15 blocks
Jewish liberals prove Bush is not after their vote Marcus Goldberg: "What do President Bush, deceased Hamas founder Ahmed Yassin and his short-lived successor, Abdel Aziz Rantisi, have in common? According to a Jewish acquaintance, they all hate Jews. Despite charter membership in the endangered species club, in their frenetic zeal to hate Mr. Bush, some Jews are acting to undermine the one man with the courage to destroy our would-be annihilators. The president is ravaged for his perceived views on social issues. Incomprehensibly, some even defend those who have sworn to kill us all. Many Jewish liberals are drawn together by a singular hatred for the president — a loathing that is hypocritical, misguided and self-destructive. "While it was acceptable for liberal Democrats Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton to practice Christianity, Jewish liberals hunker down, awaiting the Bush/Ashcroft conversion police. Jewish liberals devalue the president's religion — his
Enviromentalist stink up the place John McCaslin: ... "We've been holding our nose while reading the exchanges after senior staff writer Marc Morano wrote on the 34th annual Earth Day that some in the green movement are advocating 'diaper-free' babies to help save the planet. " 'Citing concerns about plastic disposable diapers clogging landfills and the amount of washing and detergents that cloth diapers require, many environmentalists are taking a page from tribal cultures and seeking to eliminate the use of the baby diapers altogether,' Mr. Morano observed. " 'There is a way to have a baby and NOT use diapers,' says one Web site advocating diaperless babies. Parents are urged to get in tune with their infant's body signals and hold babies over toilets, buckets and shrubbery or any other convenient receptacle when nature calls. "Writes Belinda of Birmingham, Ala.: 'Now I know the enviro
Who are you going to believe? Wesley Pruden: " Look, Charlie, who are you gonna believe, John Kerry or your own eyes? "The great white Democratic hope set out early yesterday to clear up the 33-year-old question of what did he do with his medals from Vietnam and when did he do it? "Monsieur Kerry has told several stories so many times no mere pol could remember them all. First, he said he threw away his medals. Or maybe the Silver Star and three Purple Hearts belonged to somebody else. Then it was no, they weren't combat medals, anyway, just combat ribbons. That's what he told the Los Angeles Times last week. But bad luck: ABC News discovered the tape of an interview in 1971 in which the young monsieur said no, it was medals after all, not ribbons. ... "And so it went. Monsieur Kerry and his handlers are frightened that the medals episode could be taking another Massachusetts pol for a ride in a tank. Most Americans, who regard combat
Why is this guy called a "diplomat" Washington Times: "Israel yesterday sharply criticized comments by U.N. negotiator Lakhdar Brahimi, underscoring sharp divisions in Washington over the ability of the outspoken Algerian diplomat to shape the political transition in Iraq. "Mr. Brahimi, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's point man in the Iraqi political reconstruction, stepped into a hornet's nest over the weekend by describing Israeli policy toward Palestinians as 'the big poison in the region' that would make his work in Baghdad even more arduous. "Mr. Brahimi also was critical of U.S. military action against Iraqi insurgents in Fallujah and warned against additional attacks." A guy this ignorant and bigotted should be fired.
Kerry irresponsible and shows condesending contempt Bill Sammons, Washington Times: "Vice President Dick Cheney yesterday accused Sen. John Kerry of 'deeply irresponsible' votes against intelligence funding and a condescending 'contempt' for U.S. allies in Iraq. ... "The vice president pointed out that in 1984, Mr. Kerry called for canceling weapons systems used in fighting the Cold War, the Persian Gulf War and the war on terror, including the MX and Patriot missiles, B-1 bomber, Strategic Defense Initiative, F-14 fighter jet and Apache helicopter. " 'At the same time, he proposed reductions in funding for the Tomahawk cruise missile and the Bradley Fighting Vehicle,' Mr. Cheney said. 'And at numerous times, Senator Kerry has voted against funding weapons systems vital to fighting and winning the war on terror such as the Black Hawk helicopter and the Predator drone.' ... "In his speech, the vice president
Zarqawi and al Qaeda behind Jordian bomb plot CNN: "Jordanian authorities said Monday they have broken up an alleged al Qaeda plot that would have unleashed a deadly cloud of chemicals in the heart of Jordan's capital, Amman. "The plot would have been more deadly than anything al Qaeda has done before, including the September 11 attacks, according to the Jordanian government. "Among the alleged targets were the U.S. Embassy, the Jordanian prime minister's office and the headquarters of Jordanian intelligence. ... "On a confession shown on state-run Jordanian television, Jayyousi said he took orders from Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a suspected terrorist leader who has been linked to al Qaeda and whom U.S. officials have said is behind some attacks in Iraq. " 'I took explosives courses, poisons high level, then I pledged allegiance to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, to obey him without any questioning,' Jayyousi said. "Jordanian in
Kerry's medal spin John Kerry is having trouble over inconsistent statements about throwing his medals over a fence in 1971. You can always tell when Kerry is in trouble over past statements or positions becuase he wil say something like this: ?The fact is I have been accurate precisely about what took place, and I am the one who later made clear exactly what happened. This is a controversy the Republicans are pushing.? Kerry has said that it is a "right wing myth" that he threw his medals away. But: "ABC aired and The New York Times published on Monday an exchange between Kerry and a WRC television host in Washington shortly after the 1971 protest. 'How many did you give back, John?' the interviewer asked. Kerry responded, 'I gave back, I can?t remember, six, seven, eight, nine.' The host then noted that Kerry had won the Purple Hearts and Bronze and Silver stars. Kerry said, 'Well, and above that, I gave back my others.' &q
The UK's suicidal immigration judiciary Melanie Phillips: ... "As this paper reports elsewhere, secret tapes reveal that the extremist Abu Hamza is regularly urging British Muslims to commit atrocities in Britain and rise up to dominate the world. Yet he is still at liberty. And elsewhere, some in the senior judiciary appear to be going out of their way to send a signal that Britain is just not serious about stopping terror in its tracks. "Last week, the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC) released on bail an Algerian known as ‘G’. He had been locked up in indefinite detention because he was said to support members of Al Qaeda and to have helped young British Muslims train for jihad against the west. "SIAC said it had no doubt that ‘G’ had ‘actively assisted terrorists’. Nevertheless, it accepted the claim that his unlimited incarceration was making him psychotic and potentially suicidal. Accordingly, it released him under house arrest.
Flip-flop alert Kausfiles: "Flip-Flop, Incoming! Kerry voted for the Patriot Act ... but it contained 'restrictions on our basic rights' and needs to be replaced 'with a new law' that ends 'the assault on our basic rights.' ... no, wait it needs to be strengthened! ... The LAT reports on the Democrats' presumptive nominee adjusting his straddle to fit polls that show the Patriot Act to be popular. ... P.S.: What's striking about Kerry's December '03 speech is the weaselly way it anticipates this future shift to the right by heaping scorn on the Patriot Act while attempting to avoid an actual explicit attack on the law (as opposed to John Ashcroft's 'abuse' of that statute). To the extent the speech succeeded at this, Kerry is dissembling and straddling, not flip-flopping. But I don't think the speech completely succeeded...."
Kerry's disingenious disclosures Boston Herald: "Sen. John Kerry's disingenuous disclosure strategy is raising far more questions than giving answers. "With the dust-up about his military records barely settled, the Kerry campaign is coming up with an excuse a minute to keep from releasing Teresa Heinz Kerry's tax returns. And last week's decision to detail Kerry's meetings with lobbyists backfired badly. "When it comes to political disclosure, there's no such thing as going halfway. "Kerry bungled the release of his war records, stalling and therefore raising doubts about his service. "The Kerry campaign has now changed its story three times - count 'em three - about why it won't release Teresa Heinz Kerry's tax records (though it's 'reconsidering'). First, the refusal was to protect Heinz Kerry's privacy. Then it was to protect her sons' privacy. Now, it turns out,
Kerry voting against West Virginia Robert Novak: "Last Oct. 20, Sen. John Kerry, in nonstop derision of President Bush, declared: "Where we see a beautiful mountaintop, George Bush sees a strip mine." That environmentalist rhetoric, backed by Kerry's Senate voting record, injects the senator into confrontation with the coal industry that could defeat him for president. That is his burden in Wheeling, W.Va., Monday, on a campaign swing that includes visiting a coal mine. "Coal is a side issue in Congress, but it is critical to two states won by Bush in 2000 that could decide the 2004 presidential election. Coal production is important for Ohio and absolutely vital to West Virginia. If Kerry is perceived as anti-coal, he could lose both states -- and the presidency. ... "Byrd told the Senate that his amendment was intended "to allow for the continuation of our coal industry and the jobs it provides while better protecting the mountains a
Voters recognize Kerry dodginess David Broder: ... "...When voters were asked to rate Bush and Kerry on their willingness to take a position and stick with it, eight out of 10 said Bush does that, while only four out of 10 saw that consistency or tenacity in Kerry. "Some Democrats blame this on the millions the Bush campaign has spent in recent weeks on ads depicting Kerry as a flip-flopper. But in the Post-ABC poll, Kerry actually fared much better against Bush in the states where those ads have run than in the rest of the country. "I suspect something deeper is at work. If you watched Kerry on "Meet the Press," you saw many examples of dodginess on his part. At the very start, moderator Tim Russert asked for a 'yes or no answer' to the question, 'Do you believe the war in Iraq was a mistake?' Kerry's response was: 'I think the way the president went to war was a mistake.' By restating the question, he left the fund
Al Qaeda targets in US Robert Spencer: "...There are numerous signs that something is in the offing. British investigators, combing through evidence seized following the March 11 Madrid train bombings, uncovered a plot by jihad terrorists to level Chicago's Sears Tower with a dirty bomb. Last Friday, Homeland Security Department and FBI officials, according to ABC News, 'held a rare secure conference call with police in dozens of major cities.' "The next day they sent out 'a classified bulletin ? warning that groups affiliated with al Qaeda might be planning attacks in the U.S. on the scale seen in Madrid last month.' Officials are tight-lipped and details are sketchy, but it does seem that 'police were told to be on the lookout for surveillance of landmarks, and for suspicious items left in malls, subway stations or other large gatherings.' "
Kerry trails in battleground states Donald Lambro: "Sen. John Kerry is trailing or tied with President Bush in many of the battleground states Democrats won in 2000 and that will likely decide the outcome of this year's elections, according to a survey of polls across the country by The Washington Times. "With six months to go before the November election, Mr. Bush is surprising political pundits and Democratic strategists in key Democratic-leaning states in the Northeast and Midwest. "For example, the president is leading in Michigan and Pennsylvania, two of the nation's largest industrial states that carry a combined 38 electoral votes, and he is in near-ties with Mr. Kerry in New Jersey, Oregon, Maryland and Iowa ? all states that Al Gore won in 2000. ... "National and battleground polls over the past several weeks show Mr. Kerry losing ground overall, the result of a concentrated, monthlong ad campaign by Mr. Bush's strategist