March 31, 2005

Pope Said to be Receiving Last Rights

I'm not a Catholic, but Pope John Paul II helped bring down the evil empire that was the Soviet Union. For that I am sure he has a place in heaven.

God speed.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:17 PM | Comments |

Ghaddafi Plays Peekaboo!

Sorry for the delay. Here are the winners from last weekend's blog sabbath caption contest. This one was by far the hardest to judge.

Traderrob from Exposing the Left: No no, YOUR see no evil, I'm hear no evil and Hosni is speak no evil

Eric from Vince aut Morire: Unaware the camera is still rolling, Moammar, Hosni, and the gang play "Behead the Infidel."

WeaselX: Guess whose finger is in your a**!

And special runner up status for gratuitous use of minor 70s T.V. show characters goes to Buckley F. William of The Nose on Your Face: Unable to find work after the cancellation of the hit t.v. show "Laverne & Shirley", Carmine "The Big Ragoo" Ragusa is reduced to portraying Moammar Qaddafy at Arab League events and children's parties.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:03 PM | Comments |

Jane Fonda's Traitorous Threesome with Hookers

March 1, 2006 update: Report: Video of Jane Fonda threesome with Ted Turner click here.

----------------- Begin original post ----------------

Jane Fonda has finally admitted what we've all known--or at least, you know, had certain thoughts about. No, nothing so mundane as admitting that visiting Hanoi was a mistake, although she does do that too.

Jane Fonda now says that she participated in threesomes with then husband Roger Vadim. And not the bad kind of manage a trois like in that piece of trash Chasing Amy movie. The good kind of threesome. You know, with two chicks!

MSNBC:

Also on “60 Minutes,” Fonda acknowledged that she had participated in sexual threesomes, at the encouragement of her first husband, French film director Roger Vadim.

Hmmmm, interesting....
"One night Vadim brought another woman into my bed and I went along with it....I'm competitive...I was going to keep up with the Joneses. It was the '60s and whatever," she said.
Intersting....
She told the program she isn't sure if she enjoyed the ménage a trois, but said she consented because she worried he would leave her otherwise.
Very interesting....
Fonda told CBS she even solicited the call girls herself, using her experience from her Oscar-winning role as a prostitute in "Klute".
And then suddenly I lost interest....
"Hey, if that's what he wanted, I'd give it to him in spades," she said.
Yeah, yeah, I know. Jane Fonda is a traitor. But, come on, the chick was a swinger baby!

Not that I support this kind of thing, especially when Justice Antonin Scalia is involved, but, you know, this is Barbarella we're talking about!

Linked with James 'not gonna get my 10 minutes of fame yet' Joyner.

UPDATE: Special fatwa issued against Trey Jackson for conflating good Jane with bad Jane. How 'bout some good Jane video Trey?

UPDATE 4/06: Michelle Malkin and Jeff Goldstein late to the game. Jeff was just busy looking for three-way young Jane Fonda pics. What's Michelle's excuse?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:29 PM | Comments |

Palestinian Bomb Maker Training Islamist Terrorists in Philippines

Why does this not surpirse me? Sun Star

Authorities have arrested a Palestinian man who allegedly trained al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf guerrillas in the past and returned to the Philippines for a possible terror mission, government officials said Thursday.

Fawas Ajjur, whom security officials suspect may be an al-Qaida operative, was arrested Saturday in Zamboanga City as he arrived after a baffling, circuitous journey that took him to Russia, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines, the officials said.

Ajjur did not have a visa and was taken into custody by immigration agents at the Zamboanga airport, Immigration Commissioner Alipio Fernandez Jr. said.

He was later allegedly identified by captured Abu Sayyaf guerrillas as one of the foreign militants who trained them in bomb-making near Patikul town of Jolo island a few years ago, a security official said on condition of anonymity.

Hat tip Internet Haganah

Related: Arroyo's approval ratings in the tank. It's just hard to take a person that openly pays ransom for hostages seriously when they say they are committed to fighting the war on terrorism.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:52 PM | Comments |

E-Mailing Terrorists

Ever want to correspond with a terrorist? Now's your chance! E-Mail the webmaster for the Islamic Army in Iraq. And from a whois search that Vlad did you can also e-mail the registered owner of the site by clicking right here.

You may know The Islamic Army in Iraq from such acts of terrorism as Murdering Two Pakistani Truck Drivers or Yes, We Beheaded Italian Journalist Enzo Baldoni.

I'm thinking of breaking my vow of never visiting porn sites and entering a certain e-mail address...............

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:23 PM | Comments |

Questions Raised Over Romanian Hostage Crisis

A reader from Romania has agreed to keep The Jawa Report up to speed on reactions from the Romanian press. It seems that speculation abounds that the whole hostage crisis may have been planned in advance.

He notes, though, that such conspiritorial speculation is common in his country that has seen such hard times in recent decades.

It seems that one of the hostages, Marie-Jeanne Ion, is the daughter of an important PSD member (the former government party). Thus, releasing her may be a top priority for the government. It also may explain why she was targetted.

What really seems to be raising suspicions, though, is that the entire expedition to Iraq was arranged by and planned by Omar Hayssam, who is described as a wealthy Arab immigrant to Romania. Hayssam is also being investigated for unrelated criminal activities. Hayssam is also business partners with Ion's father.

It was Hayssam that sent American Muhammed Monaf to accompany the journalists to Iraq. Mr. Hayssam also received the only known phone call demanding ransom and is said to be going to Iraq to act as an intermediary to obtain the hostages release.

This translation made by Adi, of a Jurnalul National article titled "Kidnapping or Framing?":

All the Romanians barely wait for news about the three journalists kidnapped in Baghdad. More than 48 hours have passed since their kidnapping and no official confirmation of their kidnapping has appeared. Omar Hayssam, a Romanian-Syrian businessman, is the only person to state he was contacted by an unknown person who asked, in Arabic, for a ransom in exchange for the freedom of the hostages.

On Monday, he stated for the press he received two phone calls, he was asked for money and he is willing to pay the asked sum of money for the freeing of Marie Jeanne Ion, Eduard Ovidiu Ohanesian, Sorin Miscoci and their Iraqi companion, Mahomad Munaf [ed note: Monaf is an American citizen].

Yesterday, the recording of the phone calls between Hayssam and the alleged kidnappers has entered in the possession of the specialists named by the operative group in Cotroceni.

We don't know anything about the kidnappers in Baghdad, but the person they contacted for the obtaining of the ransom has a visit card that asks for all our attention. Omar Hayssam, top billionaire, member of the Social-Democrat Party, has big problems with the law at present.

He is being investigated for money laundry and for suspicious privatizations he seems to have benefited from. In this case, he is the one who sponsored, with the help of his Iraqi-American friend Munaf, the journalists' expedition. Therefore, Munaf had to take care of everything, including the protection of the journalists. There was a total lack in it.

If we don't take into consideration all the speculations crushing down the editorial offices, as well as the fantasist hypotheses launched by all kinds of pseudo-specialists, the few certain facts draw up the picture of an atypical kidnapping, out of the ordinary ones until now.

With the support of several anti-terrorist specialists and of several connoisseurs in the realities in Iraq, we tried to put the facts in logical schemes so that it would form credible scenarios.

The four hypotheses brought up in front by the specialists we consulted, and whose names we won't publish because they are part of the information community, are as follows:

(1) The kidnapping is framed by Hayssam, with the following benefits for him: the rehabilitation in the eyes of the public opinion and of the authorities, in the case of a success in freeing the hostages; the unblocking of his accounts that the Prossecutor's Office arrested and the getting out of the country of the hypothetical sum destined to the ransom;

(2) The authors are Iraqi muggers, the so-called "Ali Baba", which wait for not such a great sum of money as ransom. In this case, the journalists have been "randomly" kidnapped;

(3) The authors are professionals, who acted according to a precise plan, with the purpose of obtaining money or a certain political claim, such as the withdrawing of the Army's troops from Iraq.

(4) Some "clips", who further sell the "catch" to the professionals, might have made the kidnapping. In this case, the ransom message usually appears in 10 days time. We should memorize that, for now, there is no certainty regarding the already received ransom message.

For each of the cases, the negotiators' role is essential. According to the information in yesterday's press, it seems that a negotiator of Omar Hayssam, introduced as Ayman Asha, has already left for Baghdad to talk with the kidnappers. Wise choice, an Arab.

The only allowed assumption by the negotiation manual for such cases. If Hayssam received the only ransom request (which the Romanian secret services investigate at present), then Ayman leaves for Baghdad sent by Hayssam. He is authorized by the Arab to negotiate. No matter what is the true version, there are a lot of signs indicating Bucharest as the key to solve this mystery.

We contacted a few people to find out their opinion about this. Protection expert Florentin Marinescu and former information minister Ion Kilin have seen each of the options as valid. Some are more probable than others, we are told. The wisest thing, and the best for the journalists, is to write and show as few information on them as possible.

Here is another article titled Scenarios on Kidnapping translated by Adi, this time from ZIUA:The kidnapping of Romanian journalists and negotiations meant to set them free are atypical and very strange. Romanian officials keep silent, the secret services are keeping a low profile, just as the terrorists.

There is a single person speaking up: Omar Hayssam! He is a businessmen related to lots of crimes and citizen of both Romania and Syria. Hayssam is member of PSD (the Social-Democrat Party), just as he is the business partner of the father of one of the journalists missing in Iraq.

But he is also a former patient of a Bucharest mental hospital! Yesterday he turned the scenario into nightmare by sending to Iraq a negotiator to decide ransom procedures involving $ 4 million. Moreover, it was not the Romanian state that negotiated the lives of our colleagues, but Omar Hayssam.

He did it shortly after getting leaving "Alexandru Obregia" psychiatry hospital. The scenario on Romanian journalists kidnapped is unique within the chain violence of this kind in Iraq. Nothing fits. Everything looks messy and nonsensical.

Yesterday Ziua daily group for action was provided with information by confidential sources. The information leads the way to hypothesis that Romanian president Traian Basescu and his policy on the Black Sea region are the target of terrorist action operated in Iraq.

The strategy on the Black Sea region is closely related to the US. Well known investigation journalist Eduard Ovidiu Ohanesian is collateral target, say Ziua sources. The investigation the Romanian journalist employed by "Romania libera" was working on was meant to unveil a thorough network of the political police within SIE (the Romanian Foreign Intelligence Service).

This is said to be also connected to Moscow and to ex KGB structures and undermine Romania's new foreign affairs policy on the region.

PSD leader Adrian Nastase rejected yesterday all attempts to politicize the case of Romanian journalists who disappeared in Iraq, as well as "some people's" attempts to make use of this tragedy for publicity.

Nastase stated: " I got worried when I learning what happened. We are providing support to all Romanian authorities' initiatives meant to set free the three missing journalists. In case we are asked for support, we shall certainly provide it". Nastase mentioned that in the last two days he was permanently in touch with PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu.

Romanian PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu stated yesterday there was no official request for ransom in the case of the three Romanian journalists who disappeared while in Iraq. The Romanian PM was asked if there was such an official request received. His answer was negative: "If we had received it officially, we would have released the news." Related: 3 Romanians and One American Shown on Hostage Video
Romanian Journalists Taken Hostage in Iraq, Plea for Help
American Kidnapped in Iraq
American Hostage in Iraq

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:12 PM | Comments |

Terri Schiavo Finally Succumbs to State Sanctioned Starvation

Rest in peace Terri. Rest in Peace.

UPDATE: Confederate Yankee is live-blogging reaction. My own thoughts on the matter are well known. For now, I will only mourn.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:06 AM | Comments |

American Hostage in Iraq

U.S. news sources are finally reporting that an American was taken hostage in Iraq late Monday evening. CNN has a blurb here and AP is running a similar story. The name of the American hostage is Mohammed ( Muhammed ) Monaf, although no major U.S. media outlet is yet broadcasting that information. Mr. Monaf and the other hostages remain in our prayers.

Notice how both stories mention the State Departmen'ts silence? Something, ahem, we warned you about earlier....

Hat tip Confederate Yankee and Decision '08.

Related: 3 Romanians and One American Shown on Hostage Video
Romanian Journalists Taken Hostage in Iraq, Plea for Help
American Kidnapped in Iraq

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:51 AM | Comments |

Zarqawi Planning WMD Attack Europe

Forget Osama bin Laden, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is now the most dangerous man in the world.

The monthly German magazine "Cicero" claims that Zarqawi is planning a major attack in Europe. Zaman:


The magazine quotes a German intelligence official saying, "We fear that Zarqawi is planning a big explosion." Zarqawi is trying to source arms equipment from the region of Georgia and the northern Caucasus, according to Cicero. Another intelligence official says in the article that he does not know if Zarqawi has managed to procure arms. "We only know that he has been working on this," the official said. Cicero pointed out that at least 150-security guards are investigating a planned terrorist attack in Bavaria, Baden-Wuerttemberg or Berlin.
Hat tip Reliapundit

Zarqawi has made such threats in the past. In December, German papers ran stories alleging that the terrorist leader was planning a terror strike of greater magnitude than 9/11. What is new is that intelligence has specific targets.

A chemical weapons lab was found in Fallujah shortly, but no quantities of WMD were located. Fallujah was Zarqawi's headquarters until it was liberated by U.S. troops late last year.

Further, (WND):

Zarqawi is also being tried in absentia in Jordan for "planning a major chemical weapons attack that was uncovered by the authorities."

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:35 AM | Comments |

March 30, 2005

3 Romanians and One American Shown on Hostage Video

Al Jazeera has aired a video showing the three Romanian journalists and their American translator taken hostage by an unknown group Monday evening.

The three Romanian hostages seen in the video are Marie Jeanne Ion, Sorin Dumitru Miscoci, and Edward Ovidiu Ohanesian. The major media still remains silent on the identity of the American hostage. Reuters, for instance, says:

a fourth unidentified person appeared on the undated tape on Wednesday sitting on the floor in front of what seemed to be blankets hung on the wall.
However, The Jawa Report has learned that the fourth victim is American Mohammed ( Muhammed ) Monaf. Mr. Monaf is reportedly a naturalized American citizen of Iraqi origin. He is said to have spent time studying in Romania and was acting as a guide and interpretor for the journalists.

Two armed men were also seen on the hostage video. Al Jazeera did not say what group, if any, had given them the tape. The pro-terrorist and anti-American television station also did not mention any demands being made for the hostages' release.

Romanian media have reported that the kidnappers have made ransom demands. It is not known whether those who abducted these hostages are insurgents looking to fund their activities or common criminals.

I would caution against jumping to any conclusions about this hostage crisis. Unlike the Giuliana Sgrena episode, these seem to be legitimate journalists.

However, I think the Italians, French, Fillippinos, and others who have paid ransom for the release of hostages never learned the lesson of my 5 year old daughter's book, If You Give a Mouse Some Cheese. Giving terrorists money is not a good idea on so many levels.......

Related entries: Romanian Journalists Taken Hostage in Iraq, Plea for Help
American Kidnapped in Iraq

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:50 PM | Comments |

Images Found at Arabic Website Show Promise and Peril of Middle East Reform

Winston Churchill once famously described Russia as, "a riddle wrapped up in a mystery inside an enigma." The Middle East and Arab world might well be described in the same way today.

There is both much hope and much fear coming out of the Middle East today. On the one hand democracy and freedom seems to loom imminently on the horizon. On the other hand, those same democratic forces may unleash radical Islamist elements long suppressed by totalitarian tyranny.

Recently I was skimming through files uploaded by users at an Arabic forum. The images found at the website offer insight into the promise and perils of democracy in the Middle East. These images show that major differences exist within Arab societies in attitudes towards the West and modernism.

Posted below you will find some of the most interesting images. They show the hopeful side of the Arab world and the not so good side.




















..........And which way will the Arab world go from here???

The answer to that is anyone's guess.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:05 PM | Comments |

The Fit Hitting the Shan for Syria in Lebanon

First this news that the Pro-Syrian government in Lebanon collapsing--again. And now this from DEBKA via Charles Johnson:

DEBKAfile exclusive military sources report complete collapse of pro-Syrian political and intelligence structure in Lebanon and abrupt withdrawal of all Syrian commands including key figure military intelligence chief General Ghazaleh.

Lebanese secret service chief Gen. Raymond Azar has fled to Paris. Internal Security Forces head Gen. Ali al-Hajj about to quit.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:39 PM | Comments |

Soviets Behind Pope Assassination Attempt

Newly uncovered records indicate that the Soviet Union had indeed attempted to assassinate the Pope, as the Vatican had long contended. The documents show that the Turk Mehmet Ali Agca was recruited by the Bulgarian Secret Service, on orders from the Kremlin, to Assassinate John Paul II.

Catholic World News:

Two newspapers, Corriere della Sera and il Giornale , are reporting that files from the Stasi, the East German spy agency, confirm the suspicions long held by Vatican officials. Documents in newly opened files show that the KGB, the Soviet spy agency, ordered the assassination attempt, which was carried out by the Bulgarian secret service.

Dimitar Tzonev, a spokesman for the Bulgarian government, said that officials in Sofia are ready to hand over their secret-service archives to the Italian commission charged with investigating the assassination attempt, which was carried out by Mehmet Ali Agca. An Italian parliamentary commission is also carrying out an investigation of KGB recruitment in Italy.

Corriere della Sera reports that the Soviet service gave the order to assassinate John Paul II, and Bulgarian agents recruited Agca for the effort. That report confirms a theory that was advanced by the Pope himself, in his book, Memory and Identity; the Pope wrote that he was convinced Agca was not acting on his own initiative, "but someone else planned and commanded it." Almost immediately after the attack-- in which Pope John Paul was shot and seriously wounded after his weekly public audience in St. Peter's Square-- Vatican officials quietly advanced the theory that the Soviet Union had authorized the assassination attempt. Italian investigators soon found evidence of ties between Agca and Bulgarian spy officers. But to date there has been no conclusive proof of Soviet involvement.

Hat tip Reliapundit who also makes a good observation here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:17 PM | Comments |

Spring Break

This is week 3 of my spring break. Week one was my spring break. Week two was my daughter's spring break. Week three is my mom's spring break (the folks are in town visiting). You'd think with 3 spring breaks you'd think that at least one of them might resemble Ward Churchill's. You'd be wrong.

And speaking of upper-class white revolutionaries pretending to be natives, how does Dr. Stotch make fun of his student with the Che patch without getting fired? Answer.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:44 PM | Comments |

Blogging Gets you the BIG Media Exposure

Fellow blogger and political scientist James Joyner of OTB will get his two minutes of fame tomorrow by appearing on MSNBC's Connected at 5:15 p.m.(Eastern). May I just say that it will be good to see someone besides evil Glenn Reynold's or Wonkette representing the best of the blogosphere. Seriously, can't the media find someone other than the Puppy Blender host or Ms. Anal to interview?

Also, INDeCent Bill and Jeff 'Cut' Goldstien will be hosting their very own radio show tomorrow at 3 p.m on Right Talk Radio. Their guest will be, hold on while I check....Glenn Freaking Reynolds?!? *sigh*

Might I suggest to Bill and Jeff that Ace is available? He's cut, he's desperate, and he's willing to do anything---if that's what it takes.

UPDATE: Malkin on O'Reilly tonight. You know what would be a good show? Malkin on O'Reilly, but without O'Reilly.

UPDATE II: Rusty Shackleford outed as gay White House reporter, finally gets an invite to speak as authority on blogging. Developing....

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:28 PM | Comments |

Terrorist Websites Aided by U.S. Firms

Enom,Inc., a Bellevue, Washington-based company, provides registrar and whois protection services for Hamasonline. The Dread Pirate Bluto has the details here.

Enom, Inc., also provides services for 357 Hosting--a Dutch company with ties to terrorists--including the Taliban. A couple of days ago we also pointed readers to this post by Dan on the possible symbolism used by 357 Hosting and its connection to 911.

All of this leads me to believe that both the FBI and CIA are operating in pre-911 mode when it comes to dealing with the presence of terrorist organizations on the internet. These sites should be treated as military targets and taken down. Instead, the FBI treats terrorism on the internet as a criminal matter.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:32 AM | Comments |

American Kidnapped in Iraq (UPDATED)

Various news agencies are now reporting that a fourth hostage may have been abducted with the three Romanian journalists taken yesterday. The fourth hostage is reputed to be a naturalized American citizen, born in Iraq.

His name is Mohammed Monaf, reports the Romanian Realitatea TV station.

JPost relays the following information:

One of his business partners in Romania, Ommar Hayssam, told Realitatea TV that he received two calls from the kidnappers Tuesday morning.
"There was a voice speaking in Iraqi dialect ... he asked if I know Mohammed," he said. "They say to pay ... and threatened that if we come with the army they will cut their throats." He declined to specify the amount of money demanded by the kidnappers.
The fact that a ransom demand was made would seem to indicate that earlier reports circulating among Islamist bulletin boards that the Romanian journalists were abducted by the terrorist organization Ansar al-Sunna were incorrect.

However, that group did announce today that it had murdered three Jordanian truck drivers.

UPDATE 3/30: So far only two other media outlets are reporting on an American being held hostage in Iraq. The Jawa Report is the only American media covering this!!

Roy Hallums redux.

It's a sad day when the MSM will not even report allegations that an American citizen has been taken hostage in a war-zone. If they are waiting for State Department of Pentagon confirmation, forget it. It is the official policy of the United States not to comment about civilian workers taken hostage.

It took nearly two months between the time that Roy Hallums was taken hostage and the State Department confirmed that 3 American hostages were 'probably in Iraq'.

UPDATE II: Xinhua now reporting that American Mohammad Munaf has been kidnapped and identified the Romanian state news agency Rompres as their source.

That makes three foreign news agencies plus The Jawa Report....no news from the American MSM.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:36 AM | Comments |

Terri Schiavo and the Pope on Feeding Tubes

Nearly a month ago I wrote a bit of satire I titled, "Florida Judge Orders Pope Removed from Life Support."

Today I learn via Decision '08 that the Pope is actually receiving nutrition through a feeding tube. Where are all the right to die death cult members now?

In another bizarre twist Glenn Beck uncovers a CBS story announcing the death of Terri Schiavo two-days ago. I wonder if they've written a similar obituary for the Pope yet? Scared Monkeys has more.

Why does Monty Python and the Holy Grail suddenly come to mind? Only this time, it's not so funny.

UPDATE: Pennywit notes that the CBS story was probably just a screw up and that obituaries are often written in advance. I seem to recall a Saturday Night Live skit about this.......

UPDATE II: James Joyner points me to Terri Schiavo's blog. Disgusting. If you think the blog is bad, read the comments. Hell has a special place for some of those nutjobs.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:35 AM | Comments |

March 29, 2005

Google News Drops 'The Jawa Report' for 'Hate Speech' Violation

I received the following e-mail moments ago from Google News.

Hi Rusty,

Upon recent review, we've found that your site contains hate speech, and we will no longer be including it in Google News. If you can guarantee that your news no longer includes hate speech, we will be happy to re-review the site for inclusion.

Regards,
The Google Team

Needless to say, I am pretty damned ticked.

I challenge Google News to find one instance of 'hate speech' on this site that is not either a case of sarcasm, humor, or a direct quote used in the context of a post that attempts to do just the opposite.

Unless, of course, Google News considers saying bad things about Jew hating anti-semites, fascists who would impose religious law, or those that cut off the heads of innocent civilians hate speech. Cause in my book, that's a good thing.

What can you do to help? Please e-mail Google News. And please, be civil.

Thanks to Blog Father Charles Johnson for the moral support.

UPDATE 3/30: A number of readers noticed that The Jawa Report was not dropped from Google News. However, it seems that it just took Google News a couple of days to finally carry through with their threat. As of today, no new Jawa Report articles are being carried by that service.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:23 PM | Comments |

Southeast Asia: The Next Battlefront for the GWOT

Where will the next wave of terrorists come from? Southeast Asia. Especially troubling are groups known to operate in Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand. More here.

And if that excellent article wasn't enough, check out this little tidbit that Digger turned up. Filipinos Among Foreign Terrorists Killed In Iraq.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:01 PM | Comments |

Russians Hate Jews (But not nearly as much as Muslims hate Jews & Christians)

Interesting findings of a Pew poll as published by the Union of Councils for Jews in the Soviet Union. Second place goes to the Germans and the French *shock*:

A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press on global attitudes towards Muslims, Jews, and Christians found that among predominantly Christian countries, Russia is the most antisemitic, according to a March 18, 2005 report by the Regnum news agency.

Twenty-five percent of respondents to the Pew survey in Russia expressed hostility towards Jews, compared to 20% in Germany, 11% in France, 9% in the UK, and 8% in the US. Hostility towards Muslims was expressed by 46% of respondents in Germany, 38% in Russia, 32% in the US, 29% in France, and 18% in the UK.

Attitudes towards Jews and Christians in selected predominantly Muslim countries were generally more hostile, with a whopping 92% of respondents in Morocco expressing hostility towards Jews and 72% expressing hostility towards Christians.

Hat tip: Zorkmidden of Discarded Lies

Parenthetically I have seen hostility towards Muslims in both the U.S. and Russia. A survey cannot capture how this hostility is translated on the ground.

In Moscow, for instance, Tartars or people who appeared to be from the Caucuses are routinely sidelined by the police for questioning. And by routine I mean every time I went to a Metro stop the police were checking the I.D. on a darker skinned guy.

The summary of findings for the report also shows that 57% of the French think that the U.S. is overreacting to terrorism.

Other tidbits? 2% of Pakistanis have an unfavorable view of Muslims. Interestingly enough, Pakistan's Christian population is estimated at between 1.5-3%. Why would Christians in Pakistan have an unfavorable view of Muslims? Answer.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:56 PM | Comments |

The Gay-Outing Terrorists of the Left: The 'Gayjahidiin'

Thanks to the terrorist tactics of the gay-outing left, The Gay Patriot has been silenced. Darleen calls this Leftist jihadism. I think the term gayjahidin is apt.

The tactics used by John Aravosis (Americablog) and Michael Rogers (BlogActive-Raw Story) have become more and more disgusting with time. Recently, we noted in a series of posts that the two have teamed up to 'out' Republican National Committee Chair, Ken Mehlman.

Now, the pair have sunk to an even lower low--if that is possible to imagine. Gay Patriot likened the two to 'terrorists'. What did it get the anonymous gay-blogger? According to Outlet Radio:

According to GayPatriot, who is also a client of mine, Michael Rogers called GayPatriot's place of employment on Friday immediately following the post above and spoke to GayPatriot's secretary and boss. GayPatriot had no idea Rogers would go to such measures and shared with me that both he and his secretary were very upset by the calls but that his boss was understanding.
Rogers excuse for calling Gay Patriot's boss?
Rogers expressed feeling threatened by the post and compared it to posts by anti-abortionists who posted the names of doctors performing them.
That is how threatening people behave, not those that feel threatened.

Rogers later instigated a police investigation and demanded from Gay Patriot's webhost that his site be taken down (check the update).

As Rob at Say Anything puts it:

They’re telling us, with their actions, that if you’re gay in this country you can not support the Republican party or any aspect of the political right and if you do support that sort of thing you will be persecuted.
He also points me to Lime Sherbert who was appparently also a victim of the gayjahidin.

Jay Tea over at Wizbang adds:

So, let's sum things up: the attitude of conservatives towards gays is "do whatever the hell you want, just keep it in private. And no, you aren't getting married, so forget about that." The liberals say "we're all for you, we'll give you whatever you want, just so long as you do exactly as we say. Otherwise, we'll fry your faggot asses -- and not in a way you'll like."
The left keeps using that word tolerance. I do not think that word means what they think it means.

Update: Emperor Misha barks in and points me to Lime Sherbert's banner. You can check it out here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:55 PM | Comments |

14th?!?!

Thanks to John Hawkins of Right Wing News for naming the Jawa his 14th favorite read. But 14th? Come on, dude. I understand being behind Malkin and Betsy, you wouldn't want to be accused of being gay (not that there's anything wrong with that...), but behind Tim freakin Blair!!! Isn't he, like, one of them foreigners or something? That's just not right......

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:40 AM | Comments |

Romanian Journalists Taken Hostage in Iraq, Plea for Help (UPDATED)

Sorin_Dumitru_Miscoci.jpgUPDATE 10:40 PM: Reports are coming in that a fourth hostage was taken. The fourth hostage is an American......Check main page for updates......


---------------------------
Three Romanian Journalists have been kidnapped in Iraq. The three victims are Marie Jeanne Ion, Sorin Dumitru Miscoci, and Edward Ovidiu Ohanesian (although the MSM is still reporting the last man as simply 'Ovidiu', his first name is Edward).

As we have noted many times before, paying the ransom demands of hostage takers often leads to more hostage taking...eh, Giuliana Sgena?

Images: top, Prima TV camera man Sorin Dumitru Miscoci; bottom, Prima TV reporter Marie Jeanne Ion

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AP:

Three Romanian journalists had finished interviewing Iraq's interim prime minister hours earlier when one of them sent an ominous text message back to her newsroom: "Help, this is not a joke, we've been kidnapped."

The three were abducted Monday night near their Baghdad hotel, officials said Tuesday - the latest journalists to be taken hostage in Iraq.

They were identified as reporter Marie Jeanne Ion, 32, and cameraman Sorin Dumitru Miscoci, 30, from Bucharest-based television station Prima TV, and Romania Libera reporter Ovidiu Ohanesian, 37.

Petre Mihai Bacanu, managing editor of Romania Libera newspaper, said the three disappeared late Monday, shortly after interviewing interim Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi.

Bacanu said no group had claimed responsibility and no ransom demand had been made.

The three were abducted about 8:30 p.m. from a street next to the hotel, which is not in the city's heavily fortified Green Zone, a hotel employee who works at the reception desk told The Associated Press by telephone.

A group from the Romanian Embassy told the hotel staff that their driver reported the three had been kidnapped, the employee said. The hotel, where other foreign journalists also stay, is in Baghdad's upscale Jadriya neighborhood and is surrounded by a concrete barrier, he said.

A Prima TV statement said Ion called the newsroom, speaking a mixture of Romanian, Arabic and English, and was heard apparently talking to her abductors.

Image right: Eduard Ovidiu Ohanesian reporter for 'Romania Libera' newspaper,Guardian:
Prima TV said Ion had made a mobile phone call to the station shortly after the three were abducted.

"Don't kill us, we are from a poor country and we have no money," Ion was quoted as saying.

Their translator said that they were from Romania, a poor country and don't have money to pay a ransom. All I know they have been taken by force and we can't reach them any more," Mr Dumitru said.

The disappearance of the three Romanians is just the latest kidnaping incident involving journalists in Iraq.

In December, a pro-American President was elected in Romania. Even more importantly, President Traian Basescu was elected publicly proclaiming his support for U.S. policy in Iraq.

Romania has 800 troops in Iraq and President Basescu made a surprise Easter visit to Iraq on Sunday.


Image: Marie Jeanne Ion (L) and cameraman Sorin Miscoci (R) from Romania's Prima TV

UPDATE 11:22 (Central): The Sgrena effect has begun. FT:

Romania's government may face its first test in sustaining public support for the country's military presence in Iraq after three Romanian journalists went missing in Baghdad on Monday, presumed kidnapped.

One official in Bucharest said the government expected “some negative public reaction”, but added that much would depend on how the crisis was resolved....

Romania has been a strong supporter of the US mission in Iraq since the 2003 invasion. But an opinion poll released on Tuesday showed 55 per cent believed their country's 800 troops in Iraq should be brought home.

I understand 'old Europe' wanting to see democracy fail in Iraq, but 'new Europe' as well?

UPDATE 1:08 (Central): A well informed source tells me that rumors have begun circulaiting that Ansar al-Sunna is responsible for the abduction of the three Romanian journalists.

This would indeed be odd given that the journalists were abducted in Baghdad.

Developing.......

Others: Chad at In the Bullpen, Interested Participant, Opinion Bug, Hyscience, Digger,

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:26 AM | Comments |

Hunting Zarqawi on the Web

Is the FBI seriously tracking down terrorist websites? I doubut it.

This Newsweek piece lays on the excuses for why the job of tracking these websites is so difficult. If informal networks of bloggers and amateur terrorist trackers can keep tabs on them why not the FBI? Pretty amazingly pathetic.

Dan, over at Riehl World View, also makes a few keen observations here. What many readers may not be aware of is that most terrorist websites are hosted by companies in either the U.S. or Europe.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:47 AM | Comments |

The Bush Doctrine vs. the 'Arc of Tyranny'

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Willisms has a fascinating post on the danger of what he terms 'the arc of tyranny' poses for the West and how the Bush doctrine is taking on that danger.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:29 AM | Comments |

Fewer Iraqis, More Foreigners Fighting U.S. in Iraq

General John Abizaid speaking to Wolf Blitzer on CNN yesterday said that the number of Iraqis fighting the U.S. has decreased in the past months. This decrease, says Abizaid, means that a larger percentage of the insurgency is now composed of foreign fighters.

The American Forces Press Service quotes Abizaid as saying, "The terrorist groups such as that led by Abu Musab al Zarqawi continue to be very dangerous."

However, “Many of the former Baathist criminals, who know they won’t have an opportunity to participate in the political future of the country, are continuing to fight,” the general said. (AFPS)

The elections of Jan. 30, though, has encouraged Iraqis and the performance of the Iraqi security forces in those elections also is a cause for hope.

“Certainly it’s better since the election,” Abizaid said. “I think continued military operations and continuing strengthening of the Iraqi security forces will make it better still.” (AFPS)

Abizaid then pointed the finger of blame squarely at Syria and Iran.

“Their security services can find those facilitation cells; they can dismantle them,” Abizaid said. “And they can certainly go after the people we have identified by name that are former members of the regime that are coordinating actions inside Syria. I won’t go so far as to say that these groups have the active support of the Syrian government, but the Syrians certainly aren’t doing enough to shut off their support for the insurgency.” (AFPS)

"We know that Iranian intelligence services people were involved with Muqtada al-Sadr during the uprisings back in April,” he said, “and then again in November (Iranian operatives) showed themselves in the Najaf area.” (AFPS)

Unsurprisingly, Arabic news sources have spun the General's words to mean that the absolute number of foreign fighters have increased. A clear sign that the strength of the insurgency is growing.

However, the General clearly indicated that the overall strength of the insurgency has fallen since the election.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:21 AM | Comments |

Zarqawi Surrounded (UPDATED)

Iraqi Interior Minister Falah al-Nakib announced today that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al Qaeda in Mesopotamia (Iraq), has been surrounded.

The Sofia News Agency reports the Interior Minister as saying, "He is surrounded in a certain area, and we hope for the best. This operation is ongoing. We hope that the situation will be completely different in Iraq at the end of this year."

Al-Nakib said al-Zarqawi was moving in "more than one area," but declined to provide more details, reports BNN.

Fingers. Crossed.

UPDATE: Novinite, which is the official foreign news agency of Bulgaria, was where this story first appeared. Later, the AP picked up the story and clarified that al-Nakib's remarks were much more general than the Novinite story.

Apparently what al-Nakib meant was that Zarqawi would eventually be captured because the Iraqi security forces are gradually taking control of the streets and winning the war.

An interesting fact bolsters his argument from the Zarqawi produced murder video released Sunday that we posted images from here. For the first time, Zarqawi uses a silenced pistol to murder the hostage victim.

As reader Eric J. notes:

The silenced pistol says to me that they are:

A. In an urban area where neighbors may hear them. (No surprise, the hostage takers seem to mostly have kept their hostages in urban areas, rather than taking them out somewhere in the countryside.)

B. Do not want to attract attention to themselves - do not control their surroundings.

It seems to indicate that random gunfire is something that would be noticed and investigated, where that was probably not the case a few months ago.

Indeed.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:20 AM | Comments |

March 28, 2005

Gone Fishing

The bass, they are a callin! I'm taking the rest of the afternoon off. If you have a sec, why not leave a comment at the caption contest. You won't want to miss this one. I'll announce winners tomorrow. Hasta, biyatches!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:09 AM | Comments |

Iraqi Interior Ministry Official Murdered by Zarqawi on Video (Images)

iraq_minister_executed_al_qaeda.jpgThe video of the murder of an Iraqi Interior Ministry official--what the MSM is calling a vidotaped 'execution'--has been posted on an Islamic bulletin board. The Jawa Report has obtained a copy of the video and will provide a link to it as soon as it is uploaded to a suitable site. Graphic images from the video are posted below.

Various news agencies are claiming the video is still unauthenticated. However, the video shows the banner of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq and bears the trademark of that group's propaganda arm.

The only strange thing about the video is the weapon used. A silenced pistol is used to shoot the poor hostage in the head. The preferred method for murder by Zarqawi has been the use of an AK-47 or a dull knife to behead the victim.

iraq_minister_executed_al_qaeda2.jpgThe victim is identified as Colonel Ryad Kateh Olyway (also translitterated as Aliwi ), a liason officer for the Iraqi Interior Ministry. Olyway was kidnapped a month ago.

As in past Zarqawi snuff films, Olyway is first forced to 'confess' to the 'crime' of 'collaboration' before he is blindfolded and shot in the back of the head.

The execution of 'collaborators' is a common practice for terrorist groups and is routinely used by Palestinian, Chechen, and Kashmiri rebels. The 'collaborator' is branded an 'apostate' and then, in accordance with Islamic law, is executed. Apostasy is a capital offense under Islamic law.

Before Olyway is murdered, his al Qaeda captors claim that he is to be executed as retaliation for the abuse of women prisoners in Iraq by the Coalition. This is a common allegation made by Arab and left-wing media, including by Italian propagandist and ex-hostage Giuliana Sgrena.

Al Qaeda has at various times demanded the release of female prisoners being held by the Coalition. The U.S. has denied that they are holding any women in prisons in Iraq. Pro-terrorist media outlets such as al Jazeera and Giuliana Sgrena's Il Manifesto routinely publish the accusation that American soldiers rape and torture Iraqi women.

Graphic images from the Colonel Ryad Kateh Olyway's murder are posted below. The images are not terribly bloody, but may be disturbing.

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Others: Chad Evans at In the Bullpen links to video.

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By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:33 AM | Comments |

March 26, 2005

Blog Sabbath Caption Contest

Caption this photo. Winners announced Monday.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:52 PM | Comments |

Third Blast in a Week Rocks Christian Neighborhood in Beirut

A car bomb has gone off in another Christian neighborhood of Beirut, Lebanon. This would be the third blast in a week to hit Beirut's Christian population.

Lebanon's Christian population has overwhelmingly supported mass demostrations aimed at forcing Syria to withdraw. Counter-demonstrations in support of Syria's long-time occupation were reported as consisting mainly of Palestinian refugees and supporters of the Islamic terrorist group Hizballah.

ITV reports that five people were wounded in the blast. The AP reports that at least two of the wounded were Asian born foreigners.

CNN:

A blast rocked Beirut on Saturday night, and Lebanese television broadcast stark images of severely damaged structures engulfed in flames.

Security officials reportedly think a car bomb caused the blast.

Casualties cannot yet be confirmed in the blast, which is said to have occurred in eastern Beirut, a predominantly Christian area.

Ambulances raced to the scene, reportedly in an industrial district, but it is not known whether people were trapped in the buildings.

A print shop and possibly a timber yard were said to be affected, which would account for the extensive flames and smoke.

News footage showed firefighters attempting to extinguish the fierce flames, which were shooting out of many windows.

The explosion was the latest in a series of blasts in the Christian areas of Lebanon. It occurred on the eve of the Christian holy day of Easter.

Four days ago, a bomb ripped through a shopping mall in a predominantly Christian area north of Beirut, killing three people and wounding at least two others, police said.

Just a few days earlier, a car bomb exploded in another Christian area of Beirut, shearing off part of a multistory office building. Nobody was killed.

Related: Bomb in Beirut Mall Kills 3

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:41 PM | Comments |

Paul Wolfowitz Has Muslim Mistress?

Paul Wolfowitz is alleged to have a Muslim mistress. The left-wing and conspiracy media are all abuzz about an alleged affair the married man is having with Shaha Ali Riza, acting manager for External Relations and Outreach for the Middle East and North Africa Region at the World Bank.

These reports are now even claiming that it was the influence of Ms. Riza--who is something far too rare in the Muslim world, a feminist--that led Wolfowitz to advocate the Iraqi invasion in such forceful terms.

Thanks to 'W' for sending me the link. I also noticed several tin-foil brigade sites are running this story word-for-word out of the Arab News, without citing the original source.

Is it true? I've no idea. The Arab News is not the most reliable source of information out there. And whenever you see a Western name publishing in the official organ of the house of Saud, I'd be skeptical.

But stranger things have happened then a Jew getting a little piece of Muslim action. This Guardian piece also reports the two are having an affair--so maybe there is something to this. A number of other publications also ran with this a couple of weeks ago.

The tinfoiled among us are already pointing this out as more evidence of the evil nature of the neocon cabal. That any relationship Paul Wolfowitz is having with Shaha Ali Riza is really just another way for him to dominate Muslims. He is the pitcher, after all.

Cause you know, as a J-O-O Wolfowitz receives orders directly from Tel Aviv via a super-secret implant in his head.

You didn't think those ginormous ears of his were real?!? The left one is the transmitter and the right one is the receiver.

Here is a tidbit from the article:

What they are said to share is a passion to establish democracy in the Middle East.

Riza, in her mid-fifties, was born in Tunis and grew up in Saudi Arabia. Her childhood is said to have done much to shape her commitment to democracy, equal rights and civil liberties in the Arab world based on her first hand experiences.

She brought those beliefs with her when she joined the World Bank in 1997.

Riza studied at the London School of Economics in the 1970s before taking a master’s degree at St. Anthony’s College, Oxford, where she met her former husband, Turkish Cypriot Bulent Ali Riza, from whom she is now divorced.

After they moved to America, Riza worked for the Iraq Foundation, set up by expatriates to overthrow Saddam Hussein after the first Gulf War. She subsequently joined the National Endowment for Democracy, created by President Ronald Reagan to promote American ideals.

It was this time that Riza, a British citizen eight years younger than Wolfowitz’s wife — started to meet with Wolfowitz about reforming the Middle East. They allegedly began dating two years ago.

Even by the discreet standards of Washington’s powerful inner circle, their relationship is a remarkably closely guarded secret. The Washington Post says the couple rarely goes out together or demonstrates affection publicly, according to friends who are aware of the relationship. They attend low-key Washington social events and visit friends’ homes together and Riza also sometimes goes to official functions and dinners with him, but is not identified as his partner, an acquaintance said.

“His womanizing has come home to roost,” a Washington insider told reporters. “Paul was a foreign policy hawk long before he met Riza but it doesn’t look good to be accused of being under the thumb of your mistress.”

A Wolfowitz opponent at the World Bank told a reporter: “Unless Riza gives up her job, this will be an impossible conflict of interest.”

Wolfowitz married his wife Clare Selgin in 1968. But they have lived separately since 2001, after allegations he had an affair with an employee at the School of Advanced International Studies where he was dean for seven years. They are now believed to be legally separated.

The World Bank’s staff association has told executives it has been swamped with complaints from employees about Wolfowitz.

However, Wolfowitz’s only comment on the complaints has been a terse statement issued through a Pentagon spokesman. He said: “If a personal relationship presents a potential conflict of interest, I will comply with bank policies to resolve the issue.”

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:26 PM | Comments |

Iraq IS Vietnam (but not like you think)

Growing up I remember seeing the footage of the last few helicopter flights out of the U.S. embassy in Hanoi. For some reason, the footage was run over and over. As if a hasty retreat wasn't humiliating enough for the nation, the liberal media had to remind us of our shame.

Ever since we began our efforts in Iraq those on the left have been using Vietnam as an analagous war. Trying to shame us in the same way they shamed us then. It turns out they are right to compare Iraq to Vietnam. Only this time, it's our enemies who are beating a hasty retreat and seeking peace with honor.

Thanks to Mark for sending me this FT piece:

Many of Iraq's predominantly Sunni Arab insurgents would lay down their arms and join the political process in exchange for guarantees of their safety and that of their co-religionists, according to a prominent Sunni politician.


Sharif Ali Bin al-Hussein, who heads Iraq's main monarchist movement and is in contact with guerrilla leaders, said many insurgents including former officials of the ruling Ba'ath party, army officers, and Islamists have been searching for a way to end their campaign against US troops and Iraqi government forces since the January 30 election.

“Firstly, they want to ensure their own security,” says Sharif Ali, who last week hosted a pan-Sunni conference attended by tribal sheikhs and other local leaders speaking on behalf of the insurgents.

Insurgent leaders fear coming out into the open to talk for fear of being targeted by US military or Iraqi security forces' raids, he said.

Sharif Ali distinguishes many Sunni insurgents, whom he says took up arms in reaction to the invasive raids in search of Ba'athist leaders and other “humiliations” soon after the 2003 war, from the radical jihadist branch associated with Jordanian militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

Unlike Mr Zarqawi's followers, who are thought to be responsible for the big suicide bomb attacks on Iraqi civilian targets, the other Sunni insurgents are more likely to plant bombs and carry out ambushes against security forces and US troops active near their homes.

Sharif Ali said the success of Iraq's elections dealt the insurgents a demoralising blow, prompting them to consider the need to enter the political process.

Let me just add that I've seen hundreds of videos produced by various insurgent groups for propaganda value. The most recent trend in these videos seem to be roadside bombs detonated at some distance. In fact, after the bomb goes off these people rarely continue taping. They split real fast like.

These people are not nearly as daring as they would have you believe.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:51 PM | Comments |

Escape Attempt Foiled in Iraqi POW Camp

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Schultz!!!

Good thing Colonel Klink wasn't running the camp, eh? Then again, I guess Kos, Michael Moore, Ward Churchill, and ilk, already believe the Nazis are running the joint......

UPDATE: I forgot to link this awesome-o photoshop by Confederate Yankee yesterday. Tim Robbins, indeed!!

So many metaphors, so little time. This article, cited below, goes with the Shawshank Redemption metaphor, while OpiniPundit sees more of the 'Great Escape' angle.

U.S. military police Friday thwarted a massive escape attempt by suspected insurgents and terrorists from this southern Iraq Army base that houses more than 6,000 detainees when they uncovered a 600-foot tunnel the detainees had dug under their compound.

"We were very close to a very bad thing," Major Gen. William Brandenburg said Friday after troops under his command discovered the tunnel that prisoners had painstakingly dug with the help of makeshift tools.

Within hours of the discovery on the first tunnel, a second tunnel of about 300 feet was detected under an adjoining compound in the camp, which holds 6,049 detainees. The elaborate escape is reminiscent of the 1994 movie, "The Shawshank Redemption," where a prisoner burrows his way out of prison.

The key difference, however, is that not one Iraq prisoner got out.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:26 PM | Comments |

March 25, 2005

More South Park in Iraq

Here is more evidence that South Park Republicans are much more responsible for the Iraq invasion than the neocon cabal ever was. Here is a patch popular with the troops in Iraq (see below), as noted by Will Collier.

Notice that Cartman is the only one smiling? To quote the great sage from Colorado, "I told you Kyle, Jawas have no heart."

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James Joyner has a photo of the South Park inspired Afghanistan service patch, too.

And if you didn't see the most recent episode of South Park, you missed some major swipes at University of Colorado Professor, Ward Churchill. You can click the hippie below to see a clip where the term "little eichmanns" is used.

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And as long as we're on the subject of South Park, can I take one moment to orgle Robert the Llama Butcher and make him my bitch? Seriously, what the hell are you smoking!!??!! Team America: World Police was one of the greatest movie ever made!!!

It goes like this:

1) Citizen Kane

2) Casablance

3) Team America: World Police

That's science, baby.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:14 PM | Comments |

Islamic Group Claims Texas Refinery Fire Result of Terrorism

An internet statement made at an Islamist bulletin board claimed that a recent fire at a Texas oil refinery was the work of terrorists. The same group had earlier announced that it had carried out a suicide bombing in a Qatar movie theater last Saturday. That blast killed one Briton and wounded at least 12 others.

Let me just make the disclaimer that I am extremely skeptical. However, as Robert Spencer has been reminding readers of late, this is exactly the type of thing we ought to be on the lookout for. Via M.H. King this AFP report:

A shadowy Islamist group which claimed it carried out last week’s suicide bombing in Qatar said in an internet statement it was responsible for an oil refinery explosion in Texas that left 15 people dead.

“It was a new kind of operation as we promised before,” said the ”Jund al-Sham Organisation” (Organisation of Soldiers of the Levant) in the statement posted on an Islamist website and dated March 24.

“Jund Al-Sham is able to attack with an iron fist all the enemies of Allah wherever they are,” added the statement, whose authenticity could not be verified.

“This operation was a big surprise, which we spoke of in other statements, and we will continue our suicide operations inside and outside America, and we will attack the economy of America as America did the economies of the Muslims,” it added.

The group also threatened to carry out attacks in Britain and Italy, and said these would continue “until the last soldier of the Crusaders or Jews is no longer in an Islamic country.”

SITE adds:
The communiqué, which has not been corroborated by any other source, also states that the attack was a follow up to a promise made by Abi Hamza “the American” who had declared that “He will turn your streets red, covered with blood.” It seems that the communiqué refers to Abu (abi) Azzam the American, a purported al-Qaeda member who in a videotape broadcasted on October 26, 2004 had threaten to carry out attacks in the United States.

The communiqué also promises that “This announcement will be followed by a detailed and illustrated announcement of this blessed operation in Texas’ main refinery.”

James Joyner is skeptical too.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:40 PM | Comments |

Mmmm, Dinosaur Chicharrones

So, can you deep fry T-Rex rinds? Via Commissar and Bill scientist now have found soft cell tissue from a T-Rex. Mmmm, tastes like chicken!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:25 PM | Comments |

Lawyers Kill Terri Schiavo

Why is it that the most authoritative voices on Constitutional meaning are lawyers? The very group least likely to know anything at all about the Constitution?

Looking around the blogosphere I am in awe at the utter ignorance lawyers have of the Federalist Papers and other historical documents written by those who had a hand in writing the Constitution.

Oh, and a close second place goes to political scientists.

I find it more than a tad bit convenient that lawyers and judges claim an absolute right in expounding what the law means.

Somewhere in Virginia, James Madison is rolling in his grave. He is soon to be joined by Terri Schiavo.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:30 AM | Comments |

Top Taliban Leader Killed in Afghanistan

A top leader of the Taliban Islamist rebels has been killed along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. Of course, al-Reuters runs this headline for the same story: Woman, Children Die in U.S. Attack on Taliban

I'll run with the Stars and Stripes version of events:


A “high-level” commander of the insurgency in Afghanistan was killed in a firefight with U.S. forces along the rugged border with Pakistan, according to an Army announcement.

Officials said Raz Mohammed, “implicated in many of the attacks against coalition forces in Paktika Province,” was killed alongside two other enemy fighters March 22 when Afghan and U.S. forces clashed with militants during a raid to capture Mohammed.

Mullah Hakim Latifi, a purported Taliban spokesman, in a satellite telephone conversation with The Associated Press from an undisclosed location said the clash occurred when U.S. troops surrounded the tents where Mohammed was living in Waza Khwa, an impoverished district on the Pakistani border.

He confirmed the death of Mohammed, who he said was a senior military commander in eastern Laghman province before the Taliban’s ouster in 2001.

He said Mohammed’s wife and six of his children also were killed.

Latifi claimed that eight American soldiers died in the battle, but the American military said coalition forces suffered no casualties.

You know, shit tends to happen when you're married to an asshole.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:33 AM | Comments |

Money, money, money, money

Tim Worstall is begging readers to do him a solid. Sounds like a plan to me.

On a related note why not check out my fine advertisors from the Blog Ads in left sidebar? Please!!!!

Also, if you see a Google ad to the left that has something to do with Islam, please click it. Any Islamic link will do. Why? Because each time you click the group pays me. I just find that... ironical.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:07 AM | Comments |

Unclear on the concept: Robber Uses Box Cutter at Gun Shop

Dumbass. Confederate Yankee has similar thoughts.

NewsDay:

A man was arrested after trying to steal a weapon from a gun shop so he could "take some action and rescue Terri Schiavo," authorities said.

Michael W. Mitchell, of Rockford, Ill., entered Randall's Firearms Inc. in Seminole just before 6 p.m. Thursday with a box cutter and tried to steal a gun, said Marianne Pasha, a spokeswoman for the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

Mitchell, 50, told deputies he wanted to "take some action and rescue Terri Schiavo" after he visited the Pinellas Park hospice where she lives, Pasha said.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:54 AM | Comments |

Akayev Denies Resignation, Russia Supports Kyrgyzstan's New Government

Russia announced today it's support of Kyrgyzstan's new government. Meanwhile, the ousted President of the Central Asian republic denies reports that he has resigned calling his ouster a 'coup' and saying he will return to Kyrgistan.

Some may take the Russian endorsement as a bad sign. The new orthodoxy of many on the right is a suspicion that Russia is fast becoming an autocratic state with interests at odds with the U.S.

My view is that the Russian situation is far more complex, especially when it comes to the former Soviet states of Central Asia. Many of these states have become bastions of radical Islamists. In this regard, Russia's interests in the region mesh nicely with our own.

Willism has the background on Kyrgyztan here and why it matters to the U.S.

Parenthetically the Bishkek Cafe, just off of Moscow's Pushkin sqare, has some pretty decent grub. You'll have to dodge the hookers that hang out in front of the bus stop at night, but it's worth it for the money. The food that is, not the hookers. Pervs.

Mosnews:

An anti-constitutional coup d’etat has taken place in Kyrgyzstan, toppled Kyrgyz President Askar Akayev said in a statement he sent to the KABAR news agency.

Akayev’s whereabouts remained unknown Friday. Commenting on earlier reports that the ousted Kyrgyz president could be in Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz embassy in that country said it had no information on his whereabouts, Interfax news agency reported.

“Rumors of my resignation from the presidential post are malevolent lies,” Akayev emphasized. “My current sojourn outside the country is temporary,” he said.

Reuters:
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Moscow was ready to work with the Kyrgyz opposition and offered refuge in Russia to Akayev, who is thought to have fled abroad, possibly to neighboring Kazakhstan.

"We know these people (the opposition) pretty well and they have done quite a lot to establish good relations between Russia and Kyrgyzstan," Putin told reporters on a visit to Armenia.

Mosnews:
Speaking at a news conference in the Armenian capital Yerevan, he said the situation was the result of the authorities’ weakness and social and economic problems in the country.

Putin expressed hope that new Kyrgyz leaders would “take the situation under control as soon as possible”.

“We know these people well,” Russian leader said recalling that opposition leaders had earlier worked in the state bodies. “They have contributed to the development of relations between Russia and Kyrgyzstan, they have done much to establish the current level of intergovernmental relationship. I hope that our relations will develop positively in the future,” Russian Information Agency Novosti quoted Putin as saying.

The Russian president, however, expressed regret that “again political issues are being solved with illegal methods, massacres and human victims in one of the countries of the post-Soviet territory”.

Putin said he is ready to host Kyrgyz president Askar Akayev in Russia if the latter wishes to come. Akayev fled from Kyrgyzstan on Thursday and went to neighboring Kazakhstan. It was earlier reported that he planned to fly to Russia.

The opposition gained control over government bodies in the capital of Bishkek on Thursday. The legislative assembly in the country later appointed a new acting president, Ishenbai Kadyrbekov.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:17 AM | Comments |

Deserter Jeremy Hinzman Denied Refugee Status

U.S. Army deserter Jeremy Hinzman, 26, was denied refugee status by the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board. Hinzman did not prove his case that he would be persecuted if he returned to the United States. Hinzman's lawyer, Jeffry House, stated he will appeal the board's decision.

Hinzman's wife and son were also denied asylum by the board. It's interesting that they even applied since there's no apparent basis. If convicted of desertion in a court martial, Hinzman may be sentenced to five years in federal prison. Frankly, that seems like a light sentence for someone who deserts in a time of war.

Hinzman and his supporters argue that he is not a deserter, rather a war resister who traveled to Canada because the Iraq war was immoral and violated human rights. He deserted in January 2004, just before his unit, the 82nd Airborne Division, deployed to Iraq.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 03:14 AM | Comments |

March 24, 2005

The Jawa Report 20th Most Influential Conservative Blog!?!

Holy freaking schnieke, Batman!!

Tim from Opinion Bug sent me this link to a very academic sounding report. You can download the report here.

Here is the gist of it, as reported by the World Peace Herald:

The study was conducted by Natalie Glance of Intelliseek, a marketing intelligence firm in Cincinnati, and Lada Adamic of HP Labs, the main laboratory for Hewlett-Packard in Palo Alto, Calif. It showed that of the 1,494 most influential blogs, during the two months leading up to the election, 759 were liberal in worldview, while 735 were conservative. The conservatives, however, showed a "greater tendency" to link to other blogs than did the liberals -- on average 15.1 links per conservative blog to 13.6 for the liberals. That made them more powerful agents of persuasion.

"We've been looking at blogs for about a year," Glance said. "There was some hope that the blogosphere would help bridge the different opinions in America, but what we are seeing is in an election year, it was divisive online and there was a strong tendency for separation of differences."

Conservative blogs apparently were the most influential sites, generating huge flows of traffic to right-leaning news organizations, such as the National Review magazine and Fox News television. The bloggers' links also pushed up the readership numbers for publications such as The New York Post, The Wall Street Journal's online Opinion Journal and The Washington Times, Glance said.
Ok. So far so good. The astounding thing, though, was that the report listed The Jawa Report as the 20th most influential conservative blog!!

*gasp*

Are you kidding me?

*reality check*

No freaking way?

*double check report*

Simply un-freaking-believable.

*clears throat*

Well, you can't argue with science, can you?

Anyway, the most interesting factoid in the report, as far as The Jawa Report is concerned, is that among the top 20 most influential blogs, My Pet Jawa is linked by precisely 0 liberal blogs. Dean Esmay, #19, is at least linked by 8 and Captain Ed, #6, by 5.

The only one that even comes close is the now nearly defunct Allah, #11, who only has 2 links by liberals to him. J-O-O's, I'm sure.

I don't know whether to wear that as a badge of honor, or what?

Anyway, no time for a more thorough analysis. I'll get around to that later.

In the meantime I'll try to make sure this doesn't go to my head.

Bitches.....

Click the image below for a larger view. Somebody might want to let some of the other bloggers know about this.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:15 PM | Comments |

And now for something completely different....

.....or, er, not. Back to the regularly scheduled programming.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:37 PM | Comments |

Legislative vs. Judicial Supremacy: Who Speaks for the State?

I thought I was done with this, but the crux of both this post and this post is that the real issue here is a question of legislative vs. judicial supremacy.

It is indeed proper to raise questions of federalism in the Schiavo case. Clearly the state of Florida ought to be the level of government that handles this case.

But who is the state of Florida? Is it Judge Greer?

Clearly not.

The Madisonian system of government is not, as some have suggested, a government of 'co-equal branches.' Rather, the Madisonian system is a system of checks and balances.

Read your Constitution. You will find nowhere any mention of 'equality among the branches' or anything like this.

What you will find is clear evidence that Congress was to be the most powerful branch, followed by the Executive, and the Courts a distant third. Very distant.

The same Constitutional scheme is embedded in most of our state constitutions. State legislatures are thought to embody the will of the state.

Courts are not supreme.

Bill Bennett agrees:

The Florida legislature sought to keep Terri alive, or at least postpone her death, by authorizing the governor to issue a one-time stay in order to prevent the withholding of nutrition and hydration from anyone under certain and extreme circumstances. "Terri's Law" was signed into law by Governor Jeb Bush in October, 2003, but soon after, the Florida supreme court struck down the law as unconstitutional.

Clearly, Governor Bush believes "Terri's Law" to be constitutional. Not only did he sign it into law, he later challenged the decision of his own state Supreme Court by appealing to the United States Supreme Court. Unfortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court would not hear the case.

In theoretical terms, this is a conflict between the separate powers of Florida government, as the judicial and executive branches have different opinions about what the Florida constitution requires. But in practical terms, Terri's life hangs in the balance: If the Florida supreme court prevails, she dies. If Governor Bush prevails, she lives. It is a mistake to believe that the courts have the ultimate say as to what a constitution means. Every governor is bound by oath to uphold and protect his state constitution. In the case of Florida, the constitution Mr. Bush pledged to defend declares that, "All natural persons, female and male alike, are equal before the law and have inalienable rights, among which are the right to enjoy and defend life and liberty..." If the governor believes that he and the Florida legislature possess the constitutional authority and duty to save Terri's life, then he is bound by his oath of office to do so....

Governor Jeb Bush may find it difficult to protect Terri's rights without risking impeachment. But in the great American experiment in republican government, much is demanded of those who are charged with protecting the rights of the people. Governor Bush pledged to uphold the Florida constitution as he understands it, not as it is understood by some Florida judges. He is the rightful representative of the people of Florida and he is the chief executive, in whom the power is vested to execute the law and protect the rights of citizens. He should use that power to protect Terri's natural right to live, and he should do so now.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:09 PM | Comments |

Do I Have To Be Certain?

by Demosophist

Although the legal decisions about Terri Schiavo's fate are behind us, the ethical and moral issues probably are not. Like Eugene Volokh I'm not sure it's necessary to have an opinion on the Terri Schiavo controversy. But I have noticed something of an anomaly in the coverage, both in MSM and in the blogosphere. The issue is presented as boiling down to two basic questions:

1. What were Terri Schiavo's wishes regarding the "right to die" question?

2. Is she currently in a "persistent and permanent vegetative state?"

Now, I'm not quite sure why both of these issues are important at the same time. From an ethical perspective if she is not in a persistent vegetative state, then she can presumably be brought back at some point to a semblance of human consciousness. If that's the case then only if you believe in the right of assisted suicide would you consider it ethical to allow her to die, which is in effect leaving that decision to her rather than the "experts." So, only if she is not "brain dead" (in the vernacular) is Question 1 relevant.

If, however, she is in a vegetative state (which doesn't mean she's "a vegetable" by the way, since that state is higher functioning than a vegetable) then there really is no person identifiable as "Terri" who is alive, and more importantly there is no real possibility of ever regenerating that person any more than if she were "moldering in the grave." I realize that's harsh, but it's true. Now, I'm not presuming that this is the case. I'm just saying that if it is then what Terri Schiavo wishes or doesn't wish, or for that matter what anyone else wishes for Terri Schiavo, is simply not relevant. She's gone. Get over it. Move on.

(If her husband did something to bring about that situation then seek to find enough evidence to bring charges. But that's a different issue, entirely. And by the way, only in the case where she is "allowed to die" would he be in jeapardy of a conviction for homicide or murder. If her parents have their way the most he could be convicted of is attempted homicide or murder.)

So, I'm actually on both sides of this issue at the same time because there's a "vacuum of information" about the precise circumstances of the issue. And if that's the case then it becomes important to ask what are the parameters of that uncertainty. (Not that I know.) My pal Rusty has an excellent tutorial on decision-making under conditions of uncertainty that's relevant not only to this situation, but to the WMD question in Iraq as well as lots of other personal and public issues. I've written about it in slightly different terms myself. But the long and short of it is that if you're a decision-maker you have a choice between two basic methods, and you're constrained to choosing only one of those two.

Rusty refers to these two methods as Type I and Type II, and I call them "alpha" and "beta" but the terminology is discipline-specific, and doesn't really matter. To draw an analogy, you have the choice between "innocent until proved guilty" (alpha or Type I) and "guilty until proved innocent" (beta or Type II).

Although it's not appropriate to use the term "guilty" for someone who has clearly done nothing wrong, I'll use it for Case 1, where Terri is either "gone permanently from the body" or where she has chosen to have her life ended should she be incapacitated. Again, I'm not implying that she ever did anything wrongn, I'm just trying to keep the categories straight without relying on the slightly confusing nomenclature of hypothesis testing. Likewise, she's "innocent" (Case 2) if she is not in a vegetative state and she has not chosen to have her life ended should she be incapacitated. Note that the first situation involves an "or" condition, while the second involves an "and." This is appropriate because I'm assuming a person has a right to end their own life. If you don't believe that, then whether or not she chooses to end her life if she's incapacitated is irrelevant, and there's only one condition: whether or not she's "brain dead."

Now, in order to better illustrate these points I'm going to make a slight digression. My argument with regard to Saddam Hussein's possession of WMD (and Rusty's) was pretty simple: It was a Type II (beta) decision. This was simply because the consequences of a "false acquittal" were so dire. (They still are, with regard to Iran by the way.) We were therefore compelled by prudence and wisdom to adopt a "guilty until proved innocent" approach. The fact that we may have determined subsequently that he was actually innocent is irrelevant to the propriety of the choice of original method. That wasn't wrong then, and it's not wrong now. Only our assessment of the actual conditions about which we were uncertain was wrong. If you are assailed by an attacker in an alley who may have a lethal weapon, and who behaves as if he has a lethal weapon, it's appropriate to assume he has one until you know for certain that he doesn't. If, after shooting the fellow, you find that he had no weapon that doesn't mean your method was wrong. You still made the right decision under uncertain conditions. And you'd be justified in doing it again, under very similar circumstances (although you'd be required to take new information into account, of course). End of story.

By the way, the reason why the decision-maker has to stick to one and only one approach is that the consequences of mixing approaches can be disastrous, and because you can only optimize for one kind of false outcome at a time: either false conviction or false acquittal. Sorry, but there's no free lunch. Only where the odds of either are exactly 50% is it possible to optimize for both at the same time, and in that case it doesn't matter which method you choose. Note that although Hans Blix originally stated (on Charlie Rose) that he was adopting a "guilty until proved innocent" approach to Saddam, be gradually shaded over into the other method without realizing it. That was dangerously sloppy. He was inconsistent, which is frankly what one ought to expect of a career diplomat.

Now, back to the Schiavo case. This is essentially the opposite of the Saddam/WMD situation. The consequences of a "false acquittal" are not dire at all, at least not for any of us. Someone would have to pay her hospital bills, but apparently there are people willing to shoulder that burden. So, if I were the decision-maker (which I am not) I could afford to adopt a Type I or alpha method, and simply assume until proved otherwise that Case 2 is a fact: she is not in a vegetative state and she has not chosen to have her life ended should she be incapacitated.

So, we're done right? Well, not quite. We still would prefer not to commit an error, even though we're only optimizing to avoid one sort of false outcome: false conviction. So the facts of the case are still important. We can probably dismiss the issue of what her actual wishes are, because we can't really know that beyond the degree of certainty that we currently possess. We have the word of her husband and a couple of sisters-in-law, apparently. Various judges have considered that testimony credible, so from a legal standpoint that issue has been settled as much as it will ever be settled. There's no new evidence coming down the pike. The only part of Case 2 that's potentially still up for grabs is whether or not she's in a persistent vegetative state, and the clearest and most unambiguous evidence of that has to be physical. The CT scan suggested that she has no cerebral cortex, and if that's the case then our assumption has been proved false. That is, even though we've assumed that Terri is "innocent" our actual analysis has proved otherwise, and we therefore are compelled to reject our assumption. But some people, including a Nobel Prize nominee named Hammesfahr, have suggested that the CT scan evidence is not conclusive. Are his objections, or the objections of anyone else on that side of the argument, to be believed?

Well, I feel confident that I can dismiss Hammesfahr as a credible witness. Anyone who solicits a nomination for a Nobel Prize, but who lacks any peer-reviewed articles that might qualify him to actually win the prize, is a con man, charlatan, vulture. The same was true of another man of infamy, Armand Hammer, who solicited a nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize (and nearly won, by the way) but who was actually a KGB bag man. So Hammesfahr not only does not call the CT scan into question, he taints everyone on that side of the argument who relies on or associates with him.

But it's still possible that the CT scan isn't definitive, and I'm simply not sufficiently expert to know whether a PET or an MRI might settle the matter more definitively. If they can I'd be all for using them. That's not something we want to determine conclusively only in an autopsy, after all.

So I'm afraid that I'm still stuck on both sides of the issue. And it has occurred to me that the real meaning of this controversy is less about the fate of Terri Schiavo than about our own deficient perceptions of life and death, and what those mean. Terri Schiavo is a kind of ink blot for all of us, so that we can observe what it is that we really believe about the single greatest uncertainty in all our lives.

Update: I can think of only one rather unconvincing reason to allow Terri Schiavo to die of dehydration (which will get her long before starvation). It's simply our queasiness about making a decision with consequences that prevents us from giving a lethal injection on the chance that even those in a vegetative state can feel pain. (However, for those distressed by this possibility, odds are people in this state don't experience anything, including pain. If that's not true, then perhaps death really is the lesser evil.) The one sorry reason I can think of for not doing that is that if Michael Schiavo ever faces trial he could argue that it wasn't he who killed her, but the state. Thus, he could only be tried for attempted murder. But it's not really much of a reason.


(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and Anticipatory Retaliation)

By Demosophist at 02:20 PM | Comments |

Terri Schiavo Dies, Rest in Peace

Though Schiavo's agony from starvation and dehydration continue, she is dead. REST IN PEACE TERRI and GODSPEED.

UPDATE 3/30/05 9:00 A.M.: Terri Schiavo passed away moments ago, the victim of state sanctioned starvation.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:42 PM | Comments |

What the Loiusiana Purchase Could Teach Us About Terri Schiavo (UPDATED)

UPDATE: This post to stay near the top until it is too late....

Thomas Jefferson believed to his dying day that the Louisiana Purchase was unconstitutional. He believed that the best way to accomplish his goal of westward expansion was through a Constitutional amendment.

When faced with the choice between doing what was right and what doing what he believed to be Constitutional, he chose what was right.

All those who are supporting the judgement of a Florida court to slowly starve to death a severely handicapped woman on states-rights grounds would do well to heed the example of Jefferson.

In the process of arguing the legal niceties of seperation of powers and federalism, a woman's life is being lost. With her life goes part of the humanity that characterizes the America that I know and love.

Often times morality is trumped by legality. That is part of the social contract. Unless we have respect for the rule of law we endanger the thin fiber of rules that keeps our society from plunging into the pits of anarchy.

However, when rule of law itself endangers the very purpose for which poliltical societies are formed--namely, protecting life--than those laws must be ignored.

Terri Schiavo's life is worth more than a thousand dissertations on federalism or the seperation of powers.

It is time to ignore the law.

One more example is in order. That of Andrew Jackson. Most Americans do not realize that there was a time when courts were routinely ignored by executive officials.

Let me paraphrase President Jackson.

A murderous Florida court, a spineless Florida Senate, a weak federal judge, and an impotent 11th Circuit have made their decisions. Now let us see them enforce them.
Enough talk. Now is the time for action.

UPDATE: The Jump Blog notes that Lincoln also did several things he considered unconsitutional, yet necessary and right.

Good Richard's Almanac uses what is a natural law arguement, that is, to ignore what seems to be the law in this instance to uphold the higher intent of the law.

100 Percenter has similar thoughts.

Let me just add that going to an appeals court is the wrong strategy in this case. Appeals courts review law. In the Schiavo case the law seems to side with murder.

Appeals courts are generally reluctant to overturn a lower court's decision. This is a case where executive and legislative officials should simply ignore the Florida courts decision.

Governor Bush should not ask the court's permission to take custody of Terri Schiavo, he should simply take custody.

UPDATE 9:02: James Joyner calls this tactic kidnapping or legal kidnapping at best.

How is removing someone from the conditions which place Terri Schiavo in imminent death kidnapping?

What moral right does the hospice have on keeping Terri Schiavo?

This isn't a kidnapping attempt, this is a rescue attempt.

A rescue of a severely handicapped woman from those who would euthenize her simply because they feel she would have wanted it that way.

The judge that has refused the DCF's request to take custody of Terri Schiavo is the same judge that believes that Michael Schiavo should be the legal guardian of Terri. Despite the fact that Michael is in no way, shape, or form her husband.

Governor Bush ought to simply ignore Judge Greer.

A judge may issue an injunction, but who enforces injunctions? Judges do not have private armies. Judges do not have their own private police forces. Judges have no means of seeing that their orders are followed.

All this is left to the executive department.

And the Chief Executive of the state of Florida is Jeb Bush.

Ignore the judge, governor Bush.

Commissar, has some thoughts on the political angle as well. But I think he misses the mark.

I don't care that 60%+ of Americans don't like Terri's law. It's politically irrelevant. In next year's Congressional races what percentage of Americans will vote? 25%? 30%?

Which side sounds more politically energized to you at this point?

Again, federalism is an abstraction. Life is not.

UPDATE 10:45: U. S. SUPREME COURT REJECTS SCHIAVO CASE

As predicted, the U.S. Supreme Court has rejected the Schindler's appeal.

I understand the sentiments of James Joyner's comments here. When politicians routinely disobey the law, this can lead to a state of anarchy--or worse.

Tyranny has resulted from ignoring the law in the past, and presumably in the future.

In fact, the example I used above of Andrew Jackson illustrates the point. Jackson ignored a ruling by the Supreme Court which granted the Cherokee nation the right to remain in Georgia. Jackson's willful disregard for the law lead to the trail of tears and to the death of thousands of native Americans.

On the other hand there is the example of the Supreme Court in 1854 when they ruled that Dred Scott did not have standing to sue because people of African descent could not be citizens.

How is this any less tyrannical?

When Northern governors, legislatures, and judges simply chose to ignore those laws designed to return escaped slaves to their rightful owners in the South, was this tyranny?

But so far this has been an argument about the meaning of the word tyranny.

If Lincoln and Jefferson's disregard for their understanding of the Constitution was tyrannical their actions certainly were the lesser of two evils.

Further, in the Schiavo case there are real differences of opinion about what the law is.

Congress and the President believe Schiavo's rights have been trampled by a Florida Court. The governor and legislature of the state of Florida believe Schiavo's rights have been trampled by Greer's court.

Constitutional interpretation is not solely the province of the courts. I argued as much in this post here.

When the courts and every other branch of government disagree over Constitutional interpretation, why should the court's will trump?

Obeying the courts is not necessarily the same thing as obeying the law. To say so is to grant the courts a power in which they never were envisioned to have.

If Governor Bush disobeys the court, and I believe he should, there is a remedy. But that remedy is not a judicial remedy, it is a legislative one.

It's called an impeachment.

I'd like to see the Florida legislature try to attempt to impeach Bush over this. It aint gonna happen.

Blogs for Terri is urging Governor Bush to take action now. I agree.

Governor Bush's email: jeb.bush@myflorida.com
Phone: 850-488-4441
Fax: 850-487-0801

UPDATE 11:30: Ann Coulter gets it and proves she is a Jawa Report Reader (via Michelle Malkin). My earlier post on why Constitutional interpretation is not solely up to the courts is here.

As a practical matter, courts will generally have the last word in interpreting the law because courts decide cases. But that's a pragmatic point. There is nothing in the law, the Constitution or the concept of "federalism" that mandates giving courts the last word. Other public officials, including governors and Presidents, are sworn to uphold the law, too....

President Andrew Jackson is supposed to have said of a Supreme Court ruling he opposed: "Well, John Marshall has made his decision, now let him enforce it." The court's ruling was ignored. And yet, somehow, the republic survived.

If Gov. Jeb Bush doesn't say something similar to the Florida courts that have ordered Terri Schiavo to die, he'll be the second Republican governor disgraced by the illiterate ramblings of a state judiciary. Gov. Mitt Romney will never recover from his acquiescence to the Massachusetts Supreme Court's miraculous discovery of a right to gay marriage. Neither will Gov. Bush if he doesn't stop the torture and murder of Terri Schiavo.

La Shawn Barber on the case:
When it comes to the protection of life, decency, fairness and American values in general, liberals dismiss the will of the people, preferring judge-made law. But when death, destruction, and indecency are in play, suddenly the will of the people is paramount. I got a kick out of reading the rambling posts of liberal bloggers pontificating about “the rule of law.” It was hysterical.
UPDATE 11:49: Steven Taylor makes a good argument here.

But if I'm not mistaken, Conservatism is not built on a single guiding principle. Yes, federalism is part of the conservative movement.

But from it's foundations Conservatism has also rejected the notion that the Supreme Court is the last word on Constitutional meaning.

The last time I checked, Judge Greer was, er, you know, a judge. Jeb Bush, on the other hand, is the governor.

The Schiavo debate is not just about federal courts intervening in what is properly a state court issue.

The Schiavo debate is also about who will have the last say in what the law means.

Will it be our elected officials, or will it be 'the least dangerous branch'?

UPDATE 12:00: Judge Greer admits error.....OpiniPundit wonders how many more of these there could be.

UPDATE 1:00: Chris Short chimes in "Don't step on my Constitution."

But I'm not sure why a governor exercising his Constitutionally delegated powers could possibly be construed as to be acting unconstitutionally?

Unless we buy into the myth of judicial supremacy, that is......

And I should have linked this earlier, but go check out Wuzzadem. That's pretty f*cked up right there.

Scott Ott:

The interim ruler of Florida, former Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge George Greer, today promised to appoint a new "people's legislature" in the wake of a coup which overthrew Gov. Jeb Bush and the Florida legislature.

While Gov. Bush and "pro-life" legislators have not yet fled Florida, helicopters are reportedly standing by.

Kevin at Wizbang:
On a related note there have been a lot of stories about polls showing support 60% to 80% support for keeping the courts and/or the government out of this messy family affair. A lesser publicized statistic is that 80% of Terri's immediate family wishes that the courts not order that she be killed by starvation.
Florida Constitution, Article I Section 2: All natural persons, female and male alike, are equal before the law and have inalienable rights, among which are the right to enjoy and defend life and liberty…No person shall be deprived of any right because of race, religion, national origin, or physical disability.

1:25: IT IS OVER. (via Matt Margolis)

A circuit court judge denied Florida Gov. Jeb Bush's request to take protective custody of Terri Schiavo (search) on Thursday, perhaps spelling the end of the protracted legal battled over how the severely brain-damaged woman ought to die.

The decision by Judge George Greer, who has consistently ruled that Schiavo did not want to be kept alive artificially, was not surprising, though it came two hours later than expected.

Greer had earlier barred the Department of Children & Families in an emergency order from taking custody of Schiavo.

Governor Bush, like most modern Americans, believes that the law is whatever judges say it is.

We have reached the end.

Terri Schiavo, may you Rest in Peace.

UPDATE 4:00: It is too late now, but I see the judicial supremacy angle is catching on. See my new post here for an ellaboration.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:23 AM | Comments |

March 23, 2005

Kos, False Even to Form

by Demosophist

Not only is this "Interview with the Devil" from Daily Kos a shameless ripoff of Jeff Goldstein in both style and substance, but it's an incompetent copy. With Saddam Hussein awaiting trial, Bin Laden hiding out, the Oil for Food scam and child pornography rings at the UN, the Myanmarr Junta, Kim Jung Il, and the headletting of Zarqawi and the Baathist thugs, this idiot (Markos Zuniga) can think of no one more evil than the man who conceived of and carried out the liberation of Iraq? That's not imagination, it's the shape of the Marxisant left as it circles the toilet bowl for one last time, heading for the septic tank of history.

And speaking of the Marxisant left, Bill Kristol's mommy just published a masterwork that clarifies how and why the radical heirs of the French Revolution have gone so consistently and spectacularly wrong, while the American Revolution's legacy has been so consistently and pragmatically right. Here's an excellent review.of Gertrude Himmelfarb's The Roads to Modernity: "Which Enlightenment?", by Keith Windschuttle. My favorite three paragraphs:

In the American colonies, the first Great Awakening, the religious revival of the 1730s and early 1740s, paralleled the Methodist revival in Britain. The contrast with France was dramatic. In seeking respite from the religious passions of the Old World, Himmelfarb writes, the Americans did not, like the French, turn against religion itself. Instead, they incorporated religion into the mores of society. They "moralized" and "socialized" religion, turning its energies into movements for voluntary association, local organization and, ultimately, the politics of liberty.

In Britain and America, those who wrote about social reform and those in government who could do something about it were either the same people or else people cooperating closely with one another. In France, however, the philosophes were unconstrained by practical considerations about how their ideas might be translated into reality. They were all the more free to theorize and generalize precisely because they were less free to consult and advise.

This profoundly affected the political consequences of their ideas. The philosophes initially decided that enlightened despotism would be their political instrument of choice. "Enlightened despotism," Himmelfarb argues, "was an attempt to realize-to enthrone as it were-reason as embodied in the person of an enlightened monarch, a Frederick enlightened by Voltaire, a Catherine by Diderot." The failure of these attempts subsequently produced the theory of the "general will" that legitimized the terror of the French Revolution. The people, in whose name the revolution purportedly acted, was a singular abstraction, represented by an appropriately singular and abstract general will. "In effect, the theory of the general will was a surrogate for the enlightened despot. It had the same moral and political authority as the despot because it, too, was grounded in reason, a reason that was the source of all legitimate authority."

Little wonder they always seem to side with tyranny, is it?

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and Anticipatory Retaliation)

By Demosophist at 09:07 PM | Comments |

Iraqi allies bring the shit to the shithouse: 85 pieces of shit flushed

I dropped a link earlier to a story about Iraqi forces taking out 80 terrorists. But Confederate Yankee writes and tells me that I need to emphasize the story more. He's right.

It turns out that there were 85 pieces of terrorist shit that were splattered by our Iraqi allies today, not 80. Hey, five more dead mujahidin going to meet their 75 white grapes is a good numerical adjustment in my book.

The great part about this story, as Confederate Yankee rightly notes, is that it was the Iraqi forces themeselves that flushed these pieces of turd. We Americans, apperenlty, just sat back and held the toilet paper.

Confederate Yankee has a good roundup on how the MSM is under-emphasizing the importance of this story. Go read it.

Interesting enough, Evan Kohlmann of the Counterterrorism blog, e-mailed me yesterday with some interesting photos of what appear to be a terrorist training camp in Iraq. Hmmm, mujahidin make mistake of taking photos of terrorist training camp....Evan releases the photos to the public....the next day terrorist training camp raided......Maybe just a coincidence?

Chad Evans at In the Bullpen notes that since there were foreign fighters at the camp, it was most likely one of the various al Qaeda linked groups. I ditto the sentiment especially in light of Evan's findings.

Hyscience has some interesting factoids about the area in which the human diarhea were training. Apparently, Lake Tharthar was Saddam Hussein's favorite fishing spot. The good doctor also notes that there has been a significant decline in terrorst activities in the Sunni triangle in the past month. *Excellent* (read in Mr. Burns voice)

Goldstein, of course, one ups the insiders who follow the jihadi message boards with some insider information of his own. He has his own Mosad agent deeply rooted in a Tikrit bunker.

Others: James Joyner

Stufff:

The Iraqi government has said its forces killed 85 insurgents at a rebel training camp north of Baghdad in what would be one of the highest guerrilla death tolls in the two-year insurgency.


The United States military, which provided ground and air support for Iraqi police commandos, said the fight took place yesterday but it could not confirm the insurgent death toll.

The Iraqi government said foreign fighters were among the militants in the hours-long battle and an Algerian was captured. Seven police commandos died in the clashes in a remote region near a lake 160km northwest of Baghdad.

"Special police commandos conducted a successful raid on a terrorist training camp ... which killed 85 terrorists and lead to the successful capture of one Algerian," the government said in a statement.

"The commandos netted explosives, vehicles, various computers, documents and heavy weaponry. The terrorists had planned on attacking Samarra by using a large number of (car bombs) that were found at the facility."

It was unclear how all but one rebel came to be killed and how none were wounded. The government also could not explain the discrepancy between the high insurgent death toll and the relatively light police losses, saying only that the operation was a success.

An Interior Ministry official said among those killed were Sudanese, Algerians and Moroccans, and a commander of the special police battalion said Syrians and Saudis were also among the dead, according to their identity papers.

The suspected training camp was in a remote location west of Tikrit and Samarra, where US troops have had a presence for nearly two years. It was not clear how such a large camp could have been established without earlier detection.

While Iraqi forces have overestimated their successes against insurgents in the past, the death of 85 militants would mark one of the most successful days for Iraqi forces since they were set up more than 18 months ago.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:42 PM | Comments |

Reader Mail in Praise of Murder, Jihad, and Islamic Fascism

It's never surprising when the jihadis who come to my site praise acts of terrorism. What is surprising, is that when such comments are left by British and American citizens. Here are some for your enjoyment.

Take this comment about American hostage and beheading victim, Jack Hensly, by 'Harry' from Manchester, England:

thanx god they killed jack hesely i will like it more when they kill bush the bastard he is a pure son of a bitch.
Hmmmm, you think the way 'Harry' writes is any indication that he may not have been born in the UK? Parenthetically, 'Harry' left his e-mail address: razaq-haroon@hotmail.co.uk

Here is another comment made by a follower of the religion of peace. It's from a long thread of comments made by Muslims, some of whom threaten Amina Wadud, the Muslim scholar who bravely prayed in public. That's right, she took the courageous step of praying in front of *ghast* men. The comment seems to urge Muslims take their grievances elsewhere---death threats are much more acceptable on Islamic forums.--e.g., it's ok to threaten Wadud, but not in front of the infidels!:

It blows my mind when I read people writing in defence of Amina. She
and her supporters indeed are ignorant people and will have the curse of
Allah SWT in this life and hereafter.

Folks, take this as a reminder,we need to be "patient" and save our
energies and time, lets spend our time and energies on learning more about
our deen than discussing the issue over and over on tons of forums out
there discussing this.

And where is this good shahid from? Yonkers, New York.

And how about this comment from a man in Windsor, England. Who needs parody with comments like this?

72 virgins for muslims ...72 pigs for anti-god forces.
And here is a letter from a supporter of the terrorist Abu Hamza. Notice that he denies Hamza's guilt and then threatens to start violent jihad--the very offense Hamza is in jail for!!
Al-salamu alako.

I am wrtting this message just to tell you what have you people done to Islam , evry one is tallking about sheikh abu hamza ,and saying his terrorest , will let me tell you something , if there is 5 people like sheikh abu hamza all the world will become a Muslime country. and it will . if its not with the words of sheikh abu hamza , then it will be with the sourd and guns of us becouse we muslims dont play around . you will see , we Muslims go were ever Islam go . no goke..................

No goke, eh? Well I guess the 'gokes' on you 'Abu Bader' of London, England. Not that I support England's hate speech laws, but this certainly qualifies. Authorities have been notified....

One more, this one from another allied country in the war on terror. Here is some reader love mail from a 16 year old in India who praises Ansar al-Sunna for murdering 11 Iraqi hostages. Notice that the boy thinks murdering Iraqi's who work with the Coalition is justified because he believes the lying propaganda of the left-wing media who portray American troops as murderers and rapists. Parenthetically, this is an accusation also made by Giuliana Sgrena:

look im only 16 year of age in my mind one word is going on that why people of iraq doing that . i will tell u u will be in iraq what
will happen to u one strang contry will acctack to u r hame u r sons and raping with u r girls .then these people are doing write {ansar-al-sunna
Ms is salaama, bitches!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:11 PM | Comments |

Algerian Terrorist Group (GSPC) Praises Zarqawi, bin Laden--Promises Death to America

A new video by the al Qaeda linked Algerian Salafist Group for Prayer and Combat (GSPC) praises Osama bin Laden and the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. The group also promises that 'Allah will destroy America'. Evan Kohlmann has a partial translation here and a link to a video clip. I have posted several images from the video below.

The full video may be downloaded here. (see 0323200503)

According to Stuff, the video was in response to the Arab summit meeting on Palestinian-Israeli peace. The group, "accused the Arab leaders of hastening normalisation with Israel in obedience to orders from Israel and the United States."

Reuters adds this from the video:

The apostate rulers ... have proved at every catastrophe that they are the roots of affliction and the symbols of treachery. They are the seed of collaboration sown by the Ziono-Christian alliance in the body of the nation.

"The downtrodden nation ... is marching with firm steps to wreak revenge on you and avenge the blood of its sons whom you have offered as sacrificial victims to America."

Images from the video: The video juxtaposes the 'good guys' (the jihadis on the right) with the 'bad guys' (world leaders on left, including Arab leaders who they see as tools of Zionism). Notice the ZZ top beard?

bin_Laden_GSPC.jpg

statement_GSPC.jpg

zarqawiGSPC.jpg

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:41 PM | Comments |

Blogger's Efforts Help Free Yemeni Dissident

The Yemeni dissident journalist Abd al-Karim al-Khaiwani has been freed. Jane Novak of Armies of Liberation was at the forefront of freeing the man. She led an online effort to pressure the government in Yemen, wrote articles published in Middle East Newspapers, and was the impetus behind the Journalists Without Borders campaign.

Score one more for the Pajamahidin! Al Jazeera:

Yemeni President Ali Abd Allah Salih has pardoned journalist Abd al-Karim al-Khaiwani who was put behind bars for criticising his regime.

Salih told a government-named dialogue commission that he was pardoning al-Khaiwani, whose one-year jail sentence was upheld by an appeals court on Tuesday, a member of the committee said, requesting anonymity.....

Al-Khaiwani, who has been in jail since early September, is editor of the opposition weekly Al-Shura, which was ordered to suspend publication for six months. The period has elapsed, but the weekly has yet to resume publication....

Al-Khaiwani's case is linked to an armed struggle waged by a Zaidi preacher, Shaikh Husain Badr al-Din al-Huthi, in northwest Yemen last year....

Al-Khaiwani, himself a member of the Zaidi sect, a moderate Shia Muslim group dominant in the northwest but in the minority in the mainly Sunni country, defended al-Huthi throughout the conflict and was bitterly critical of the government's handling of the rebellion.

He went so far as to lash out at the family of the Yemeni president.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:01 PM | Comments |

WTW: Dale GribbleRusty Shackleford's Take (UPDATED)

rustyshackleford.jpg

Alley Treats and Alamo Beer:
Mmmm, I could deep fry that for you. Down at the gun club, we also disobey authority. Isn't Nancy a Fox babe? Don't they call English rednecks limeys? UPDATE:
Llama Butcher MIA: Alien abduction. Fried pickles? Mmmmmm. Thongs. I'm wearing one now. Lawn gnomes: Hank? Texas vs. California: Ayup.

Politics in and around Heimlich County, Texas:
11th Circuit Court of Appeals Rejects Schiavo Appeal: Masonic conspiracy. INDC on Schiavo. In DC? Don't trust 'em. AARP? First stage--second stage, Logan's Run. Sex offenders in Arlen? Carry a gun. No, carry many guns. FEC? FEDERAL...say no more. Michael Jackson? Robot. UPDATE: Parental notification nightmare:....Yup. Air America fiascos on HBO: Is that some kind of short-wave station? Liberal bloggers for Terri: You said the 'L' word. Evan Scott? My son Joseph is adopted. Alien DNA. John Delorean's death: Time machines are real. Howard Dean, scriptorian: The Bible code predicted it. Oliver Willis in outer space: Staged, like the moon landing. Driver's license? I have two. Farrah Fawcett reality show: Hot, but not Nancy hot. Democratic tee-shirts: Small, please.

Politics in places that don't matter--the rest of the world:
Al Qaeda is in Panama. Does David Lee Roth know about this?
Malaysia releases terror suspects. Are Malaysians Chinese or Japanese? World Water Day? Illuminati plot. Canada? Area 51, North. Kofi and UN reform: ........(shaking) UPDATE: 80 terrorists killed in Iraq raid: sh-sh-sh-shaw! Venezuala going communist: Have gun, will travel. Muslims demand apologies for Crusades: Indiana Jones. Nuf said.....Boomhauer?

I'm off to drink some Alamo in the alley. For more White Trash Wednesday fun, visit these sites:


By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:28 AM | Comments |

March 22, 2005

Jawa Report is, Little Green Footballs is not

My blogfather, Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs, is NOT a Google News source. The site you are now reading, The Jawa Report, is......kind of makes you wonder, eh?

Instapundit, is not. Guerrilla News Network is.

Roger L. Simon is not. Howard Zinn's ZMag is.

Please recommend Little Green Footballs to be a Google News Source here.

If not for the children, do it because it'll chap Cousin Ollie's arse.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:34 PM | Comments |

Bomb in Beirut Mall Kills 3

This would be the second bomb in a Christian area of Lebanon in the past week.

UPDATE: Lebanese blogger reacts:

Yet another bomb! Events on the ground are proving that the Syrians have not left Lebanon. They have withdrawn some of their troops and ostensibly closed their "intelligence offices" in Beirut and a few towns, but they still control Lebanon.

Reuters:

Three people were killed and several more wounded early on Wednesday when a bomb exploded at a commercial center in a Christian town north of the Lebanese capital Beirut, police and local television said.
Television footage showed the roof of the center in the coastal town of Kaslik had collapsed and emergency services workers were searching through the rubble for other victims.

Police said blast had been caused by a bomb, but gave no more details.

AFP:
Three people have been killed and two injured in an explosion at a shopping centre near Lebanon's port of Jounie, north of Beirut, according to local media reports.

Private television station LBC reports that the explosion took place in a mainly Christian area.

Television footage showed the roof of the centre in the coastal town of Kaslik had collapsed and emergency services workers were searching through the rubble for other victims.

Police said the blast had been caused by a bomb but gave no further details.

IsraelNN:
Shortly after midnight tonight, an explosion rocked a predominantly Christian area north of Beirut. Lebanese media carried reports of three dead and two wounded in the blast. The cause of the explosion was not immediately confirmed.

The Christian community has been heavily involved in the anti-Syrian activities that followed the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in mid-February. Lebanese supporters of Syria from the Shi'ite Hizbullah terrorist organization have carried out random shootings at buildings in Christian neighborhoods during the turmoil that ensued. On Saturday, a car bomb exploded in a Christian suburb north of Beirut, injuring nine people.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 07:38 PM | Comments |

Happy Birthday Jane

Most bloggers celebrate their blogoversary with silly linkdrops, shout outs, and reminiscings. Jane Novak of Armies of Liberation celebrates hers by making us aware of a worthy cause that seems to have tragically failed. Go visit Jane now. How many other bloggers can you say are in contact with jailed dissidents in the Middle East?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:53 PM | Comments |

The Left Blogospheres Gay-Outing McCarthyism

Here are the winners of last blog-sabbaths caption contest. Winners were chosen arbitrarily by my lawyer, Rusty Shackleford.

Buckley F. Williams: In a misguided attempt to dispel rumors that he is a homosexual, Republican National Committee chair Ken Mehlman takes time to pose for the new JC Penney catalog.

Wavemaker: "....and when I saw in the locker room that Rogers and Aravosis were this big, I said to them, 'no wonder you're gay!'.."

Jack M. Redcorn: "And after I saw that Jeff Gannon was this big (cut!), I made damn sure he got his press credentials..."

Runner up goes to me, for the obvious Mr. Garrison comparison....

"When a reporter notices that the word 'penis' occurs 6,083 times in his new novel, Ken Mehlman replies, 'Well, women want to read about ding-dongs! D'you thnk women care about the details of female anatomy?! Hel-lo! Women wanna read about big, poweful schlongs!'

Of course, this caption contest was inspired by the leftosphere's gay McCarthyism.

Gay-witch hunting that still seems to take up so much time for the left-blogosphere--and trust me it's going to get much worse before it gets better.

Recently, the good folks who brought you the Jeff Gannon / James Guckert outing have set their eyes on higher office. In a forthcoming edition of GQ magazine it will be revealed that Ken Mehlman, the Republican National Committee Chairman, is their next target.

Evidence that Mehlman is gay? Well ,he's not married. He seems to be pretty clean. And no one has seen him on a date recently.

Sounds like a lot of guys I know. Most of the time I just call them loser.

Anyway, Mehlman has denied that he's gay. I'm sure this won't satisfy the leftosphere. They won't be satisfied until they out a prominent Republican. And if there are pictures--hot man-on-man action pictures--all the better.

Cause you know, all that feminists really want to see are pictures of penises. Hot flopping penises. A Redwood forest of penises......

Where was I?

Oh, yeah. Is Ken Mehlman gay?

Shouldn't the obvious answer be who cares?

There is an orthodoxy on the left that gays must be Democrats. That Republicans hate gays. That to be gay means automatic support for gay marriage.

The worst part about this orthodoxy is that gays who don't toe the party line are considered worse than enemies.

They are considered traitors.

And traitors, as you know, must be rooted out. Exposed.

It's a kind of McCarthyism. Only McCarthy was at least trying to root out real traitors--people who he believed were giving away America's nuclear secrets.

McCarthy, however wrongly he pursued those goals, at least had worthy goals. He was trying to save America from a very real threat.

Can the gay-outing McCarthys of the left say the same thing? Is the goal of gay-marriage so fundamentally important that destroying the lives and reputations of people is worth it?

In my mind the gay-outing left better take a good long look in the mirror and ask if such destruction is really worth it in the long run.

History has past judgement on McCarthy, and so too will it pass judgement on those who employ his tactics in much less important a cause.

Confederate Yankee has some more thoughts.

Update: Is McCarthy on everyone's mind, or what?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:43 PM | Comments |

30 al Qaeda / Ansar al-Islam Terrorists Captured

The Australian:

IRAQI police have seized 30 men linked to terror groups and involved in three beheadings, the rape and murder of three women, and the separate murders of 40 other people, General Adel Molan said today.

Some of the men belonged to al-Qaeda and some to its sister group Ansar al-Islam and were caught in Baladruz, 60km north-east of Baghdad, the general said.

He said police had divided the detainees into three groups: the first was wanted for beheading three people; and the second for the separate murders of 40 people, including some Diyala provincial council members and Iraqi security forces.

The third group raped and then murdered three women, Gen Molan said.

Related. Also related. The good news, it just does not end.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:21 PM | Comments |

Judge To Let Schiavo Die, Orders Stephen Hawking Feeding Stopped

terrischiavo.jpgTampa, Fla (Jawa News Service): A federal judge on Tuesday refused to order the reinsertion of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube, denying an emergency request from the brain-damaged woman's parents that had been debated in Congress and backed by the White House.

He also ordered caregivers of Stephen Hawking to stop feeding the 63 year old nobel prize winning physicist.

U.S. District Judge James Whittemore said the 41-year-old woman's parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, had not established a "substantial likelihood of success'' at trial on the merits of their arguments. He also noted that since Stephen Hawking appeared to be in "pretty bad shape, we better err on the side of caution and stop feeding him too."

Whittemore wrote that Schiavo's "life and liberty interests'' had been protected by Florida courts. Despite "these difficult and time strained circumstances,'' he wrote, "this court is constrained to apply the law to the issues before it.''

"And by 'law'," he added, "I mean the disregard of this court for the express will of the legislature which wrote the law, substituting my own judgement for their's."

stephenhawking.jpgThe Florida legislature had attempted to clarify the law in Florida so that in cases where a person in a vegetative state had not left clear instructions as to whether to continue life supporting activities, that the presumption would be in favor of life. The Florida Supreme Court declared that law unconstitutional.

Rex Sparklin, an attorney representing Terri Schiavo's parents, said lawyers were immediately appealing to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta to "save Terri's life.'' That court was already considering an appeal on whether Terri Schiavo's right to due process had been violated.

Lawyers for Hawking also plan to join the suit.

Howard Simon, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida, praised the ruling: "What this judge did is protect the freedom of people to make their own end-of-life decisions without the intrusion of politicians. Terri Schiavo and Stephen Hawking would have wanted it this way.''

Bobby Schindler, Terri Schiavo's brother, said his family was crushed. "To have to see my parents go through this is absolutely barbaric,'' he told ABC's "Good Morning America'' on Tuesday. "I'd love for these judges to sit in a room and see this happening as well.''

But Scott Schiavo, brother of Terri's husband, Michael, called the judge's decision "a good thing,'' and said he did not believe Congress should have intervened.

"Plus," he added, "that computer voice thingy of Hawkings is just freaky. Not natural, like."

"There's not a law that's made for this,'' Scott Schiavo told The AP in a telephone interview. "This is something that goes on 100 times a day in our country, that people, their wish to die with dignity is not a federal issue. And if they refuse to die with dignity, we'll just help them along some.''

Attempts to reach Bob Schindler were unsucessful early Tuesday. George Felos, the attorney for Michael Schiavo, hung up twice when reached by reporters from The Associated Press. Hawking's people were equally short with reporters, one of them telling the AP to, "go bugger off."

Whittemore's decision comes after feverish action by President Bush and Congress on legislation allowing the brain-damaged woman's contentious case and the ALS afflicted (also known as Lou Gehrig's disease) physicist's to be reviewed by federal courts.

The tube was disconnected Friday on the orders of a state judge, prompting an extraordinary weekend effort by congressional Republicans to push through unprecedented emergency legislation Monday aimed at keeping her alive.

Gov. Jeb Bush was described by a spokeswoman as "extremely disappointed and saddened'' over the judge's decision not to order the tube reconnected. "Gov. Bush will continue to do what he legally can within his powers to protect Terri Schiavo and Stephen Hawking, both vulnerable persons,'' said the spokeswoman, Alia Faraj.

Terri Schiavo did not have a living will. Her husband has fought in courts for years to have the tube removed because he said she would not want to be kept alive artificially and she has no hope for recovery. Her parents contend she responds to them and her condition could improve.

Stephen Hawking has lived with ALS his whole life, and first noticed its affects on his Oxford rowing team. The disease slowly ate away at his motor functions.

Doctors, hired by the ACLU for this case, note that Hawking's latest attack on string theory, published in the journal Nature, was, "nothing more than a reaction to light and sound and only mimicked higher motor functions."

David Gibbs III, the parents' attorney, argued at a Monday hearing in front of Whittemore that forcing Terri Schiavo to starve would be "a mortal sin'' under her Roman Catholic beliefs and urged quick action: "Terri may die as I speak.''

Hawking's, an agnostic, is said to believe that the right to life is the fundamental basis of democracies and that no man can sit in judgement of anothers inherent human worth. He noted that without the help of a specially designed computer that he might also appear to be braind dead.

Hawking communicates through eye movement alone.

But George Felos, an attorney for Michael Schiavo, argued that keeping the woman alive also violated her rights and noted that the case has been aired thoroughly in state courts. "Hawkings," he added, "was just thrown in for safety's sake."

"Yes, life is sacred,'' Felos said, contending that restarting artificial feedings would be against Schiavo's wishes. "So is liberty, particularly in this country. And if it's not in England, it should be.''

Hawkings is a British citizen who has often complained that his computerized voice system makes him sound American.

Michael Schiavo said he was outraged that lawmakers and the president intervened in a private matter. "When Terri's wishes are carried out, it will be her wish. She will be at peace. She will be with the Lord,'' he said on CNN's "Larry King Live'' late Monday.

When King asked Michael Schiavo if dying really was Terri's wish, he answered, "We didn't know what Terri wanted, but this is what we want...."

Terri Schiavo suffered brain damage in 1990 when her heart stopped briefly because of a possible potassium imbalance brought on by an eating disorder. She can breathe on her own, but has relied on the feeding tube to keep her alive.

Stephen Hawking was born in 1942 and first noticed symptons of ALS when he was 20. At 21 doctors diagnosed him with multiple sclerosis. Later he learned the diagnosis was incorrect. Since 1974 he has been unable to feed himself, and has been assisted by his wife Jane. Since 1985 he has been under full time medical supervision.

Court-appointed doctors say Schiavo is in a persistent vegetative state with no hope of recovery, while her parents insist she could recover with treatment. Doctors have said Schiavo could survive one to two weeks without the feeding tube.

Hawking is expected to expire in a much shorter time.

According to a CNN-USA Today-Gallup poll of 909 adults taken over the weekend, nearly six in 10 people said they think the feeding tube should be removed and felt they would want to remove it for a child or spouse in the same condition.

In another poll, nearly one in three agreed with the statement that 'the holocaust has been blown way out of proportion.'

The poll was taken before the judge added Professor Hawking to the list of those that will be euthenized.

On Tuesday, reaction to the judge's decision from the handful of protesters outside the woman's hospice came quickly. "It's terrible. They're going to talk and talk and she's going to die,'' said Miriam Zlotolow, 59, of Venice, Calif.

Larry Flynt, of Hustler publishing fame, is said to be holed up in his Malibu home and is said to be looking for a non-extradition country for immediate emmigration.

UPDATE: It looks like we both forgot our lithium on the same day.

UPDATE II: Dan is on the same wavelength:

A conservative judge in Orange County, California has come under fire for ordering the removal of at least three feeding tubes sustaining the live's of a small group of anti-war protestors in Southern California.

The therapist, too:

Florida officials are setting up a makeshift "tent city" in Pinellas County, Florida, in anticipation that recent court rulings may provide a spike in euthanasia requests.

"We've received many letters from distraught husbands with ‘vegetatively constrained’ wives. We'd just like to be prepared for the boom."

(both via Cranky Neocon)

UPDATE III: Via Bill at INDC my thoughts summed up exactly by Dale Franks suggests:Do us all a favor. The next time you go to the doctor, put in a DNR/No Heroic Measures order. Save us all a bunch of trouble if you get a nasty bump on the head, would you?Allah provides us with this link: "Click, register, and download your very own state-specific living will and/or health-care proxy. Follow the instructions on the forms closely, as you'll probably be required to sign in front of two witnesses or a notary."

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:21 AM | Comments |

March 21, 2005

Mujahidin Army of Iraq Issues Letter to America (UPDATED)

UPDATE: This is an archive page. For the latest information about communiques and videos being released by terrorists in Iraq, please visit the MAIN PAGE HERE. Updated Daily.
-----------------------

mujahadinarmylogo.jpgThe General Headquarters of the Mujahadin Army in Iraq has made the following statement addressed to the American people. The communique is written in English. The letter is published in its entirety below, with brief commentary and analysis.

A propaganda video was also put out with the message. The video may be downloaded here (see 'communique7.wav).

The video shows IEDs being made and used, while the letter is read as a voice over. The voice over on the video is more extensive than the printed letter. Part of the video shows insurgents digging up previously buried ordinance, which is then converterd to use as IEDs. The video is desinged to show a strong insurgency in order to sway American public opinion. It paints a Vietnam like picture in exactly the same way the American left portrays Iraq.

[ UPDATE and NOTE TO SELF: Insurgents digging up previously buried ordinance....they know where to find weapons that are covered with dirt.....buried weapons are then converted to use on the masses.....video shows previously buried weapons then used for destruction.....and this video was probably made by Saddam loyalists who might know where to find buried weapons......I know there is something to this, but my mind is just unable to connect the dots.....]

Notice the heavy use of Leftist media reports, including the allegation made by Giuliana Sgrena that chemical weapons were used in Fallujah, to justify ongoing efforts to kill Americans. Also notice the heavy use of anti-Semetic imagery and the major theme of a global Jewish conspiracy. Hat tip Infovlad.

Letter to the American People

People of America

We wish to share with you our thoughts on the events we experienced, as well as what the future may bear, & despite the madness we have endured & still, we see no harm in presenting you the criminal nature of your newly re-elected Emperor.

Despite our belief, that the elections were flawed, we know now that when there is a close tie between the candidates, there is something wrong. Some in our ranks, believe that any candidate from any side of the spectrum, are two faces of the same coin. You the people, have said your word, in what is claimed to be a democracy; & thus, have chosen a leader, who claims to represent your vision.

It is your right to lead the world, as it is the right of any nation which chooses to do so, yet this does not allow you to conquer others. There is a belief of a large number of our people, that a lot of facts do not reach you, facts that may be classified as unsuitable for the general public. Facts, that are twisted to gain a positive image here or there. Nothing new to an emperor who represents deceptions, lies, crimes, half victories, & total defeats.

Your administration, time after time, lied & presented you with achievements directed by Hollywood & preformed in Iraq.

You have elected these criminals, & thus, you are responsible for their actions. We hope that your future decisions will be based on reason & belief, for your emperor tomorrow will mirror the image of America to the world, & by his actions, will your new empire beMeasured.

And for the first time in history, a mafia of the weapons plants represented by Bush, Oil companies represented by Dick Chayne, & the Zionists by Paul Wolfowitz & Richard Pearle, hijack the United States of America in an ingenious plan to control the world. This type of Administration is exactly what Benjamin Franklin once warned you of.

The reference is to a now debunked statement allegedly made by Benjamin Franklin warning against trusting the Jews. The statement actually first appeared in a Nazi publication A Handbook on the Jewish Question in 1935. Arab presses and various extreme right and left wing publications continue to pass along the 'Franklin Prophecy' as if it were true.
By weakness & ignorance, you have allowed this gang of criminals to hijack you country, create a new phobia, to recruit those whom they regard as nothing but fuel & vehicles to their master plan.

This administration, will enforce on you as it tries to enforce on our people, new laws that will result in a police state similar to those your consecutive governments back in our region.

Notice how the 'resistance' in Iraq believes the left-wing European and American media reports on the Patriot Act. For instance, if you were a regular reader of The Nation you might also believe this was true.
Legislation will soon be drafted by the appointed puppets to allow foreign ownership of land & structure & soon our people will be the foreigners on the land of their for-fathers. This new world order, will enslave people of all religions & race& Soon your children as well as ours, if they survive, will truly live in a planet of apes, & with a reduced population for ease of control, this can only be the implementation of a plan once presented by Henry Kissinger.
Again, the extreme right-left-and Islamists all converge on the idea of a New World Order out to enslave humanity. And who is behind this global order? The Jews, of course.
This world has not yet seen an empire, which constitutes in it’s prime objectives, the destruction & genocide of whole populations & societies, only to control the energy resources of this planet.
Again, listen to Moveon.org rhetoric and you would actually believe this to be the case. Did you watch the anti-war rallies over the weekend? Genocide was the word of the day.
Your representatives, & their media, have portrayed an image that an insurgency is in Effect & that it is led by elements of foreign fighters entering from Syria & neighboring Countries; yet we assure you, that it is only a continuation of what Bush once claimed, “Mission Accomplished”.

This resistance movement was prepared for, & is only the second chapter of this War. And we are mostly if not all Iraqis, Proud Iraqis who kept their oaths to defend people & country. And because this war may last longer than what the invaders anticipated, we have all promised to make their stay long, costly & painful.

Blaming other countries, is nothing but creating new pretexts to invade other sovereign states & back future expeditions.

This seems to suggest that the resistance is admitting to ties with Saddam Hussein. If the resistance had prepared itself before the invasion then it certainly did so under the supervision of Hussein. This particular group, the Mujahadin Army, is not one the three main terrorist groups in Iraq. Such generic names have often thought to be used by former Baathists who now cloak their fight in religious terms.
They have made our country a battlefield to settle accounts with elements of Al-Qaida, formerly dear allies and partners, they have also created new phobias to justify their continued presence, despite their loss of this war.

As for the general media, we call on them to think about what they declare, & not fear death & imprisonment, do not fall into traps prepared by those pull the strings from Tel Aviv.

As for the declared casualties, This is an epic on it’s own. We assure you that the figures are far higher than declared. It is not a secret today in Iraq, what we call the green card soldiers, young men from South America & other parts of the world gathered and promised the U.S. citizenship & large sums of cash for their mercenary services in Iraq. They are always on the frontlines, & their casualty figures are never declared. They are hidden in unmarked graves and dumped into rivers under the cover of moonless nights. Some of which, the resistance has provided evidence of. There are also the large numbers of security contractors, who are not listed as military personnel. To us, it is one thing to be tricked into this war, but it is totally different, to come here & fight someone else’s war.

Err....right.
After the failed American Elections in Iraq, they will now play the sectarian card. They are already sending their mercenaries to destroy churches & mosques alike in order to prepare the grounds for civil war & unrest. They will train more & more local traitors to conduct police operations & detention raids on anyone who does not accept democracy performed at the muzzle of a barrel. The local mercenaries will also act as sandbags to their masters, when we choose to strike.


The non conduct of your troops has also taken it’s toll on our people, it has created resentment & disgust. They dismiss these war crimes as isolated cases, yet the figures are always on the rise. What’s more are the scandals of Abu Graib, poka, The use of Chemical weapons on Falluja, & only gods knows what’s to come.

Thank you leftist media, you traitorous thugs, for giving the jihadis a reason to kill Americans and pro-democracy forces in Iraq. I document that Sgrena makes the allegation that chemical weapons were used in Iraq here.
Life under Dictatorship is far more safer, than behind the bars of your democracy.

Have you not asked yourselves, where are the weapons of mass destruction, & where are the links between our previous government & the once CIA sponsored AL-Qaida? Or is that all now a thing of the past?

What happened to the thousands of innocent people who died & continue to die of cancer,

Women who give birth to deformed babies, caused by the effect of your military’s depleted Uranium shells. Since 1990, our first encounter with your troops on the battlefields, thousands on both sides of the conflict have suffered unknown illnesses, many have died since then, & others lack medical attention. Large parts of Iraq will be radioactive for millions of years to come, & if we were to return this radiating material to the U.S. & Britain, we would be no different than those who use them.

The left-wing media also is rife with reports that depleted uraniam is harmful and causes mass birth defects and hundreds of thousands of deaths. A completely unsubstantiated allegation, which has been debunked time and time again. The 'depleted' part of 'depleted uranium' means that the substance has been depleted of most of its harmful radiation.
May we ask you, why you think the British government decided to set foot only in areas of the south, where the resistance is still partially active. They have left the difficult areas for your boys to suffer. This deal was accepted by your government only to form a purely cosmetic alliance with a nation that still strives for the glory of it’s imperial past.

They have turned the land of the free, into a camp of capitalist slavery, and then changed The home of the brave into a printing house for papers they call dollars & guarded it with enormous military might. This administration, which claims that you have re-elected, has brought on more humiliation & insults to each & every one of you, than any other government in your short, yet tremendous history.

& as odd as it may seem, we advise you to take matters into your own hands, & rid this world of such criminals, or any form of government which resembles the Neo-cons in their aims. Form a third party if need be, appoint those who resist pre-emptive war as true representatives of the people, before it is too late. & if demonstrations & protests are not heard, use & protect what is left of your constitution & correct matters by force. The world awaits your move. Today, these words may seem strange, but we believe that a nation which once gave the world John F. Kennedy, Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Hughes, & Henry Ford, will not fall short of giving true leaders of substance & dignity.


This war has taught us, that one man on the field can change the outcome of a day, One man, who believes in true freedom, can do what nations put together dare think of.

We share these thoughts with great honesty, to those of you who spent days & nights trying to prevent this war. Timeless efforts to prevent this real holocaust.

To all of you we say, you are the true patriots, & thank you for your time.

The Mujahideen Army
Baghdad- Republic of Iraq
On the 7th of Safar 1426
The 17th of March 2005

Dear Mujahadin Army,

Thank you for your concern. Now look up. What you do not see or hear is a 2000 lb bomb falling on your position. That is our reply.

Sincerely,
America

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:08 PM | Comments |

Christians In Iraq Threatened

It's not just in Iraq, but in the entire Middle East where Christians have been persecuted for a thousand years. However, as civil society breaks down the threat to Christians increase. This MEMRI report puts the whole thing into context. Here's a taste:

Shortly after the fall of Saddam, Islamists, who took control of the streets of many Iraqi cities, began to target Christian owners of liquor stores. They first ordered the owners to close their businesses; if the owners failed to comply, the Islamists gutted the stores and often killed the owners. An example is liquor merchant Bashir Toma Alias, who was shot in the head in the center of a bazaar in Basra while on his way home to celebrate Christmas....

The report goes on to warn that unless these "Islamic terrorists" are brought to justice, "Iraqi Chaldeans will continue to be an easy target for such criminals who are bent on imposing their distorted version of Islam by force." It was reported that in the southern city of Basra, the second largest city in Iraq, armed Shi'ite groups with names such as "The Revenge of Allah," "Hizbullah," and "The Organization of Islamic Doctrines," roam the streets to mete out "Islamic punishment" on traders and users of alcohol, as well as on prostitutes. Four hundred Christian stores were closed. According to Faysal Abdullah, the head of the Organization of Islamic Doctrines, Islam "rewards those who seek martyrdom and who were designated by Allah to uproot vice."

Often the police stand idly by in the face of crimes committed in their presence because they are afraid of the armed Islamists or because they sympathize with their aims.

Not the hookers!! Any one but the hookers!!!

I would only add that Christians have never been allowed to fully practice their religion. Islamic law forbids conversion to Christianity (or any other religion) and prescribes the death penalty for those who would openly attempt to proseletyze Muslims. Not a single Muslim country--whether it be 'moderate' or not--allows true freedom of religion in that regard.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:22 PM | Comments |

Little Eichmanns on South Park

littleeichmanns.gif

Click the hippie above to see a short clip of South Park's Ward Churchill inspired episode. This clip includes the classic line, "See the corporations are trying to turn you into little Eichmanns so that they can make money."

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:49 PM | Comments |

Supreme Court Denies Zacarias Moussaoui Appeal

SOL. I resemble those remarks.

CNN:

The Supreme Court Monday rejected the appeal of Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person publicly charged in the United States in connection with the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The high court ruling paves the way for Moussaoui to stand trial. While a Justice Department spokesman said prosecutors would propose a date as soon as Tuesday, a trial is likely not to begin before this September.

Moussaoui, an admitted member of al Qaeda, the Muslim terrorist group linked to the September 11 attacks, had asked the court to rule on whether his right to a fair trial hinges on obtaining testimony from other al Qaeda detainees who, he believes, would exonerate him.

Bloomberg:
Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person charged in the U.S. in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks, lost a Supreme Court appeal that might have derailed the government's bid to prosecute him and seek the death penalty.

The justices, without comment, let stand an appeals court decision that limited Moussaoui's access to other alleged al- Qaeda members who are in U.S. custody. The lower court said prosecutors didn't have to make those people available for interviews by Moussaoui's legal team.

The Supreme Court rejection, issued today as part of a list of orders in Washington, is a victory for the Bush administration, which urged the justices not to take up the case.

``Today's denial of Moussaoui's appeal puts the prosecution back on track,'' Justice Department spokesman Bryan Sierra said. The trial may begin before the end of the year.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:06 PM | Comments |

Saudis Behead Man for Murder, Rape and BLACK MAGIC

The Saudis do that voodoo that they do so well--beheading people. Yes, practicing magic, the dark arts, witchcraft, voodoo, whatever you want to call it is a capital offense under Islamic law. Yes Timmy, that means they kill you....JPOST:

A Saudi man was executed Monday for murdering a compatriot and having illicit sex with women by using sorcery to trick them, the Interior Ministry said.

Zayed bin Ali bin Saleh al-Thabiti al-Maliki was executed in Taif, a city in western Saudi Arabia, bringing the number of people beheaded in Saudi Arabia this year to 29.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:37 PM | Comments |

Saudis Give Ward Churchill 200 Lashes

Now that would be justice. Instead, the Saudis give a liberal muslim scholar 200 lashes for making fun of a conservative muslim scholar. His offence was mocking 'long beards', a euphemism for salafist and wahhabist Muslims who have a strict interpretation of Islamic law.

The Australian:

A SAUDI academic has been sentenced to 200 lashes and time in jail for insulting an Islamist colleague, a Saudi-owned newspaper reported today.

Hamza al-Muzaini, a lecturer in linguistics at King Saud University, was accused by Abdullah al-Barak, a lecturer of Islamic culture at the same university, of defamation and insult, the London-based Al-Hayat reported.

Barak, who is described as a radical salafist - a strict form of Sunni Islam - reportedly accused Muzaini of "mocking long beards" and questioning his knowledge in an article published a few months ago, other reports said.

Muzaini was sentenced to 200 lashes, four months in prison and banned from publishing, a verdict he immediately appealed, the newspaper said.

(hat tip: Discarded Lies)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:01 PM | Comments |

Mujahadin Army of Iraq Issues Letter to America

This is an archive page. For the latest news about communiques and videos coming from terrorists in Iraq, please go to the MAIN PAGE HERE.
----------------------------

UPDATE: Something just clicked. I've updated this post here, check it out.

mujahadinarmylogo.jpgThe General Headquarters of the Mujahadin Army in Iraq has made the following statement addressed to the American people. The communique is written in English. The letter is published in its entirety below, with brief commentary and analysis.

A propaganda video was also put out with the message. The video may be downloaded here (see 'communique7.wav).

The video shows IEDs being made and used, while the letter is read as a voice over. The voice over on the video is more extensive than the printed letter. Part of the video shows insurgents digging up previously buried ordinance, which is then converterd to use as IEDs. The video is desinged to show a strong insurgency in order to sway American public opinion. It paints a Vietnam like picture in exactly the same way the American left portrays Iraq.

Notice the heavy use of Leftist media reports, including the allegation made by Giuliana Sgrena that chemical weapons were used in Fallujah, to justify ongoing efforts to kill Americans. Also notice the heavy use of anti-Semetic imagery and the major theme of a global Jewish conspiracy. Hat tip Infovlad.

Letter to the American People

People of America

We wish to share with you our thoughts on the events we experienced, as well as what the future may bear, & despite the madness we have endured & still, we see no harm in presenting you the criminal nature of your newly re-elected Emperor.

Despite our belief, that the elections were flawed, we know now that when there is a close tie between the candidates, there is something wrong. Some in our ranks, believe that any candidate from any side of the spectrum, are two faces of the same coin. You the people, have said your word, in what is claimed to be a democracy; & thus, have chosen a leader, who claims to represent your vision.

It is your right to lead the world, as it is the right of any nation which chooses to do so, yet this does not allow you to conquer others. There is a belief of a large number of our people, that a lot of facts do not reach you, facts that may be classified as unsuitable for the general public. Facts, that are twisted to gain a positive image here or there. Nothing new to an emperor who represents deceptions, lies, crimes, half victories, & total defeats.

Your administration, time after time, lied & presented you with achievements directed by Hollywood & preformed in Iraq.

You have elected these criminals, & thus, you are responsible for their actions. We hope that your future decisions will be based on reason & belief, for your emperor tomorrow will mirror the image of America to the world, & by his actions, will your new empire beMeasured.

And for the first time in history, a mafia of the weapons plants represented by Bush, Oil companies represented by Dick Chayne, & the Zionists by Paul Wolfowitz & Richard Pearle, hijack the United States of America in an ingenious plan to control the world. This type of Administration is exactly what Benjamin Franklin once warned you of.

The reference is to a now debunked statement allegedly made by Benjamin Franklin warning against trusting the Jews. The statement actually first appeared in a Nazi publication A Handbook on the Jewish Question in 1935. Arab presses and various extreme right and left wing publications continue to pass along the 'Franklin Prophecy' as if it were true.
By weakness & ignorance, you have allowed this gang of criminals to hijack you country, create a new phobia, to recruit those whom they regard as nothing but fuel & vehicles to their master plan.

This administration, will enforce on you as it tries to enforce on our people, new laws that will result in a police state similar to those your consecutive governments back in our region.

Notice how the 'resistance' in Iraq believes the left-wing European and American media reports on the Patriot Act. For instance, if you were a regular reader of The Nation you might also believe this was true.
Legislation will soon be drafted by the appointed puppets to allow foreign ownership of land & structure & soon our people will be the foreigners on the land of their for-fathers. This new world order, will enslave people of all religions & race& Soon your children as well as ours, if they survive, will truly live in a planet of apes, & with a reduced population for ease of control, this can only be the implementation of a plan once presented by Henry Kissinger.
Again, the extreme right-left-and Islamists all converge on the idea of a New World Order out to enslave humanity. And who is behind this global order? The Jews, of course.
This world has not yet seen an empire, which constitutes in it’s prime objectives, the destruction & genocide of whole populations & societies, only to control the energy resources of this planet.
Again, listen to Moveon.org rhetoric and you would actually believe this to be the case. Did you watch the anti-war rallies over the weekend? Genocide was the word of the day.
Your representatives, & their media, have portrayed an image that an insurgency is in Effect & that it is led by elements of foreign fighters entering from Syria & neighboring Countries; yet we assure you, that it is only a continuation of what Bush once claimed, “Mission Accomplished”.

This resistance movement was prepared for, & is only the second chapter of this War. And we are mostly if not all Iraqis, Proud Iraqis who kept their oaths to defend people & country. And because this war may last longer than what the invaders anticipated, we have all promised to make their stay long, costly & painful.

Blaming other countries, is nothing but creating new pretexts to invade other sovereign states & back future expeditions.

This seems to suggest that the resistance is admitting to ties with Saddam Hussein. If the resistance had prepared itself before the invasion then it certainly did so under the supervision of Hussein. This particular group, the Mujahadin Army, is not one the three main terrorist groups in Iraq. Such generic names have often thought to be used by former Baathists who now cloak their fight in religious terms.
They have made our country a battlefield to settle accounts with elements of Al-Qaida, formerly dear allies and partners, they have also created new phobias to justify their continued presence, despite their loss of this war.

As for the general media, we call on them to think about what they declare, & not fear death & imprisonment, do not fall into traps prepared by those pull the strings from Tel Aviv.

As for the declared casualties, This is an epic on it’s own. We assure you that the figures are far higher than declared. It is not a secret today in Iraq, what we call the green card soldiers, young men from South America & other parts of the world gathered and promised the U.S. citizenship & large sums of cash for their mercenary services in Iraq. They are always on the frontlines, & their casualty figures are never declared. They are hidden in unmarked graves and dumped into rivers under the cover of moonless nights. Some of which, the resistance has provided evidence of. There are also the large numbers of security contractors, who are not listed as military personnel. To us, it is one thing to be tricked into this war, but it is totally different, to come here & fight someone else’s war.

Err....right.
After the failed American Elections in Iraq, they will now play the sectarian card. They are already sending their mercenaries to destroy churches & mosques alike in order to prepare the grounds for civil war & unrest. They will train more & more local traitors to conduct police operations & detention raids on anyone who does not accept democracy performed at the muzzle of a barrel. The local mercenaries will also act as sandbags to their masters, when we choose to strike.


The non conduct of your troops has also taken it’s toll on our people, it has created resentment & disgust. They dismiss these war crimes as isolated cases, yet the figures are always on the rise. What’s more are the scandals of Abu Graib, poka, The use of Chemical weapons on Falluja, & only gods knows what’s to come.

Thank you leftist media, you traitorous thugs, for giving the jihadis a reason to kill Americans and pro-democracy forces in Iraq. I document that Sgrena makes the allegation that chemical weapons were used in Iraq here.
Life under Dictatorship is far more safer, than behind the bars of your democracy.

Have you not asked yourselves, where are the weapons of mass destruction, & where are the links between our previous government & the once CIA sponsored AL-Qaida? Or is that all now a thing of the past?

What happened to the thousands of innocent people who died & continue to die of cancer,

Women who give birth to deformed babies, caused by the effect of your military’s depleted Uranium shells. Since 1990, our first encounter with your troops on the battlefields, thousands on both sides of the conflict have suffered unknown illnesses, many have died since then, & others lack medical attention. Large parts of Iraq will be radioactive for millions of years to come, & if we were to return this radiating material to the U.S. & Britain, we would be no different than those who use them.

The left-wing media also is rife with reports that depleted uraniam is harmful and causes mass birth defects and hundreds of thousands of deaths. A completely unsubstantiated allegation, which has been debunked time and time again. The 'depleted' part of 'depleted uranium' means that the substance has been depleted of most of its harmful radiation.
May we ask you, why you think the British government decided to set foot only in areas of the south, where the resistance is still partially active. They have left the difficult areas for your boys to suffer. This deal was accepted by your government only to form a purely cosmetic alliance with a nation that still strives for the glory of it’s imperial past.

They have turned the land of the free, into a camp of capitalist slavery, and then changed The home of the brave into a printing house for papers they call dollars & guarded it with enormous military might. This administration, which claims that you have re-elected, has brought on more humiliation & insults to each & every one of you, than any other government in your short, yet tremendous history.

& as odd as it may seem, we advise you to take matters into your own hands, & rid this world of such criminals, or any form of government which resembles the Neo-cons in their aims. Form a third party if need be, appoint those who resist pre-emptive war as true representatives of the people, before it is too late. & if demonstrations & protests are not heard, use & protect what is left of your constitution & correct matters by force. The world awaits your move. Today, these words may seem strange, but we believe that a nation which once gave the world John F. Kennedy, Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Hughes, & Henry Ford, will not fall short of giving true leaders of substance & dignity.


This war has taught us, that one man on the field can change the outcome of a day, One man, who believes in true freedom, can do what nations put together dare think of.

We share these thoughts with great honesty, to those of you who spent days & nights trying to prevent this war. Timeless efforts to prevent this real holocaust.

To all of you we say, you are the true patriots, & thank you for your time.

The Mujahideen Army
Baghdad- Republic of Iraq
On the 7th of Safar 1426
The 17th of March 2005

Dear Mujahadin Army,

Thank you for your concern. Now look up. What you do not see or hear is a 2000 lb bomb falling on your position. That is our reply.

Sincerely,
America

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:00 PM | Comments |

Sexy Social Security

It's not hot girl-on-girl action, but I'd say Social Security is almost as sexy. American Warmonger has a good summary of the alternatives.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:55 AM | Comments |

Congrats

Congrats to Jay Dawg Quinton who is now engaged to be married.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:28 AM | Comments |

Girl-on-Girl Makeout Is To Attract Men

Because females outnumber males on college campuses, coeds realize some difficulty in getting noticed by men. To do so, some women get attention by resorting to making out in front of men at parties and on the dance floor.

"A lot of girls do it to get men going," said Jenny Sabella, 21, a junior at Columbia. "They'll be at a party and be drunk and start making out with another girl to get noticed."

This nugget of male-female interplay is according to a report in the Chicago Sun-Times by Lori Rackl and Andrew Herrmann. In all candor, I've always thought that women team up with women because they get the hots for each other. Now I'm led to believe that women hit on women for the benefit of getting noticed by men. Pretty shrewd, eh?

"It works, too," said Columbia senior Andrew Greiner, 26.

You know what this means? The prevalence of lesbians in society may be reported higher than it actually is because some women pretend to like women just to attract men.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

UPDATE: Photo commentary by Rusty

By at 11:00 AM | Comments |

Bush Signs Schiavo Bill, Case Goes to Federal Court (UPDATED)

President Bush has signed a bill aimed at keeping Terri Schiavo alive. Bush signed the Bill at 1:11 a.m. after an extraordinary all night session of Congress. The bill gives federal jurisdiction in the case by Terri's parents to keep her alive.


A federal judge in Tampa is already considering the case. Reuters:

David Gibbs, a lawyer for Schiavo's parents, filed a lawsuit and a request for a restraining order with the federal court as soon as Bush signed the bill in Washington, CNN said.

Bush had cut short a Texas vacation and flown back to Washington to be available for an immediate signing.

"Today, I signed into law a bill that will allow federal courts to hear a claim by or on behalf of Terri Schiavo for violation of her rights relating to the withholding or withdrawal of food, fluids, or medical treatment necessary to sustain her life," Bush said in a written statement.

The House of Representatives passed the measure 203-58 shortly after midnight following three hours of debate. The Senate cleared it unanimously Sunday.

"We are very, very thankful to have crossed this bridge," Suzanne Vitadamo, Terri Schiavo's sister, said after the House vote. "We are hopeful, we are very hopeful, that the federal courts will follow the will of Congress and save my sister's life."

Schiavo's husband and legal guardian, Michael Schiavo, said he was outraged by the government's intervention.

"It's a sad day for Terri and it's a sad day for everybody in America because the government is going to trample all over your personal and private matters," he said on NBC. "This is an outrage. They have no business in this matter."

Speaking on CNN, he vowed to fight on in the courts.

The measure gives U.S. District Court in Tampa, Florida, jurisdiction on a case that has been taken up by Republican congressional leaders and galvanized activists on both sides of the emotional end-of-life issue.

Blogs for Terri reports that U. S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has been asked to join the case. According to The Empire Journal:
Ted Hires, president of the Justice Coalition of Jacksonville, Fl., faxed his formal request late Saturday night to Alberto Gonzalez, U.S. Attorney General, in regard to the alleged federal violations committed under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Hires has urged all Americans to contact the Attorney General’s office, requesting him to investigate the facts of the violations and take Terri Schiavo into protective custody until these allegations have been thoroughly reviewed by the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Justice Coalition is a victims’ rights group who believes that Terri’s civil rights as a disabled adult, her due process and health care provisions have been unjustly denied by the Florida Courts.

James Joyner, though, believes the case has troubling Constitutional implications and points to this article by Michael Cohen:
There are plenty of serious constitutional issues raised by this law. First, it applies only to one family and thus may create equal protection problems-- after all, why shouldn't other people who want to keep their loved ones on life support over the objections of others not also received tailor-made legislation?
This, of course, is a legally ridiculous argument. Special dispensation is made in law all the time. From every corporate loophole to Congress passing extraordinary acts giving citizenship to those who would otherwise be unqualified, the national legislature passes 'special' laws quite frequently. Moving Terri's case to federal court, then, raises no seriousl equal protection claims.

What Cohen really means is that the law 'is not fair'. Lawyers are trained to believe that anything they think isn't fair raises some sort of equal protection or due process claim. Cohen continues:

Second, as Harvard Law School Professor Laurence Tribe points out, it arguably deprives Terri Schiavo herself of the constitutional right to "halt the unwanted bodily invasion by a tube" and does so without any due process to her (and her husband and guardian).
Larry Tribe would make the Sophists blush. Presumable whoever the court appoints as legal gaurdian has the best interests of Terri in mind. But doesn't basic Darwinism teach that self-preservation is the ultimate guiding principle of life? That is why there is a Constitutional right to life, but no Constitutional right to die. Wishing death upon oneself is the ultimate act of irrational behavior. Normally, courts do not protect people from irrational behavior. Especially when such irrational behavior is not self-inflicted, but imposed by another person--such as Michael Schiavo.
Third, it raises big separation of powers problems and also federalism concerns-- the Supreme Court in particular hasn't been receptive to federal intrusion into matters normally resolved by the states-- matters like guardianship laws.
This is really the only sound Constitutional argument Cohen or any one else is making. This is normally a state matter.

However, this does not stop Congress and the courts from imposing the federal government on what are normally thought of as state matters on almost a daily basis.

And just because Congress does not normally exercise this power, does not mean the power does not rest with Congress. A right not exercised cannot imply a right does not exist.

Further, the argument that Terri has a civil rights claim to life is much less tenious than Larry Tribes assertion that Terri has a privacy claim to keep the feeding tube out of her body.

Life is explicitly gauranteed in the 14th Amendment of the Constitution. In fact, it is one of the few things the Constitution explicitly prohibits states from taking away without due process.

No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law...
If privacy is a right at all, it is one that is only implied in the Constitution and recently discovered.

Of course, it will be argued that Terri has been given due process, and thus the state may deny her her life.

Granted.

But Terri's law does one simple thing: it gives the federal courts exactly what the 14th Amendment explicitly says they can do, the authority to find out if the state of Florida has denied Terri her right to life.

Let us not forget that however limited federal power ought to be in the Constitutional scheme of things, there are certain areas where such power is explicitly granted. Even to strict constructionists, then, Terri's law does not violate any Constitutional principles.

UPDATE: Joyner chimes in that the seperation of powers claim is the most pursuasive and dismisses my right to life argument. I'll focus on the seperation of powers claim.

This rests upon assumption that the three branches of government are co-equal branches. Thus, the legislature is overstepping it's bounds by acting on what is a judicial function.

That assumption is not correct.

The Constitution does not set up a system of co-equal branches. Congress, is clearly more powerful, in the Madisonian system, than the other two branches.

In the words of Alexander Bickel, the Judiciary is "The Least Dangerous Branch."

Federalist #78 clarifies why that is:

This simple view of the matter suggests several important consequences. It proves incontestably, that the judiciary is beyond comparison the weakest of the three departments of power
Issues of juridiction are clearly within the realm of Congress.

Further, what remedy does the public have when courts do on occasion act in a dangerous manner?

The Constitutional system is such that Congress, or another legislative or executive body, act in the very manner in which they are now acting.

For far too long the American public has been led to think that court decisions are the final word. We act as if courts have special knowledge. We act as if Dworkin's 'Hercules' really is behind the bench.

The Constitution was designed in such a way that judicial decisions could be overturned by legislative and executive acts. The pardon, for instance, is one such case where an executive--for any reason--can grant clemency and let prisoners out of jail.

If the duty of judges is to declare what the law is, why is it not the duty of legislatures to clarify laws that they beleive judges are interpreting erroneously? In the case of Terri Schiavo the Florida legislature has attempted time and time again to clarify the meaning of Floriga law so that a presumption will be given to life.

But the same Florida courts that the legistlature is attempting to check have declared the acts of the legislature unconstututional. That is convenient, at best.

In our Madisonian democracy there is no 'trump card'. In fact, the political process is neverending. As originally designed, politics in America is a never ending game. There is no end point where one branch of government wins.

Each branch of government has certain powers it can use to attempt to thwart the acts of the others. The judiciary is no exception. Congress's move here is simply the normal functioning of checks and balances, nothing more.

The next play belongs to the courts.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:57 AM | Comments |

Pirates Release Japanese Hostages

Yeah, you heard it right, pirates. The official line, that is, says it was pirates. However, the GAM Islamist group operates in the area. GAM advocates an Islamic state in Indonesia's Aceh province. Hostage taking is often used as a method to fund insurgent activities around the world. Earlier report here.

CNN:

Pirates have released three sailors -- two Japanese and a Filipino -- who were kidnapped last week in one of the world's busiest waterways, Japan's Foreign Ministry said Monday.

The three were abducted a week ago when pirates attacked the Idaten, a Japanese-registered tugboat, in the Malacca Strait, a shipping lane between Malaysia and Indonesia.

The boat's Japanese captain, Nobuo Inoue, 56, spoke on the phone with the shipping company president Kanji Kondo, currently in Penang, Malaysia, and confirmed that he and his two abducted crew members had been safely released, according to Japanese Foreign Ministry official Masahiro Takagi.

Takagi refused to disclose details until he was able to meet with Inoue and the two others -- Japanese chief engineer Shunji Kuroda, 50, and Filipino third engineer Edgardo Sadang, 41.

The ministry official also refused to say whether any ransom money was paid.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:05 AM | Comments |

March 19, 2005

Blog Sabbath Caption Contest

In light of this post, caption this photo of Republican National Committee chair Ken Mehlman. Winners announced Monday.

UPDATE: Eeek, is it already 6:30?!? Winners announced tomorrow.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:42 PM | Comments |

Leftist Bloggers ask the IMPORTANT Questions: Is Ken Mehlman Gay?

Raw story:

GQ Magazine details the outing campaign of gay blogger Mike Rogers (also editor of RawStoryQ) in a 3,100 word spread in this month’s issue, now on newsstands in New York and Los Angeles, RAW STORY has learned.

The piece, which includes a first-ever denial that the chairman of the Republican National Committee Ken Mehlman is gay–a fact contested by many reporters and others close to the Mehlman himself–is sure to spark a new firestorm of debate over whether outing those who oppose gay civil rights is appropriate.

“Ken Mehlman is not gay,” Steve Schmidt, a senior official of the Bush campaign and a friend of Mehlman’s told Jake Tapper, an ABC News correspondent who wrote the piece for the magazine. Scmidt who refers to Rogers as a “bottom dweller.”

Mehlman has not responded to previous requests for comment on his sexuality from any publication.

RAW STORY previously reported that during the Republican National Convention in New York, Schmidt intimidated two New York newspapers from printing a story questioning Mehlman’s sexuality. Schmidt also allegedly called the sources that had spoken to Mike Rogers, who had been ready to go on the record about their experiences with the then-Bush-Cheney campaign manager. Mehlman was also outed by a progressive radio talk show host late last year.

AmericaBLOG’s John Aravosis, who is gay and publicly questioned whether Mehlman might be gay last year, said he was surprised a Bush campaign official would deny Mehlman was gay.

“If he’s now heterosexual, I’d like to know why he’s single at 38,” Aravosis told RAW STORY. “Because we’ve heard nothing about girlfriends, we’ve heard nothing about marriage, we’ve heard nothing about nothing–and he’s bashing [us] about gay marriage? Because he doesn’t seem like much of a defender of marriage himself.”

That's not the way Ann Coulter tells it!

I wonder if John Aravosis will publish photos of Ken Mehlman's C*CK? Cause, you know, there's nothing that settles the Social Security reform debate better than a nine-inch Republican MAN-SHAFT.

Rob at Say Anything in his best Jeff Goldstein voice says about the article:

After all, we can’t let these Republicans escape the hypocrisy of their private sexual lives. Your political leanings absolutely must hinge upon your choice in sexual partners.
Indeed. Do you think it's time to break out the Gannon-bell again??

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:31 PM | Comments |

Al Qaeda Bombs Western Theater in Qatar

Evan Kohlmann sent me a link to a translation of a communique between al Qaeda in Saudi Arabia to other al Qaeda network affiliates in the Middle East a couple of days ago. In the communique, Saleh al-Aoofi orders the jihadis to begin striking the infidel. It looks like they are following orders well.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:08 PM | Comments |

Amina Wadud Death Watch #2

If this was an Islamic state, this woman would be hanged, she would be killed, she would be diced into pieces. * via LGF

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 07:45 PM | Comments |

Carbomb in Beirut

Hizballah responsible? Probably.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 07:36 PM | Comments |

Jawa and Rachel Corrie seperated at birth

Yoda's last words: "There... is... another... Shackleford......"

Rusty: "Rachel Corrie!!"

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 07:32 PM | Comments |

Democratic Underground on Terri Schiavo

Hundred Percenter has more of the Lefts disgusting disregard for life:

I said "Terri Schiavo has the same likelihood of swallowing as a Chia Pet." Other things with the
same likelihood of swallowing as Terri Schiavo:
- A slab of granite
- A watermelon
- A hubcap from a 1989 Ford Escort
- Play-Doh
- etc.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 07:23 PM | Comments |

March 18, 2005

Basil Rules, Rusty Drools

Oh wait...what was that I was saying about Frank J. being a schill? Since Basil is also a sponsor My Pet Jawa let me just say a few nice things about him.

a) He's smart. b) He's funny. c) He's sexy.

Not Jeff Gannon sexy, but sexy. Go visit Basil!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:30 PM | Comments |

One, Two, Three, Four, I Proclaim a Blog War

Unlike that wuss Frank J. who is obviously a corporate shill, I hereby declare loyalty to Keith Taylor.

Gizoogle ... Paris Hilton's Cell Phone Number ... The Niggas at DFNCTSC ... Strip clubs in Ohio with midget strippers ... Girls Big Tit ... Free Big Tit Sites ... Jamie Lynn Spears Naked

Why? Because he asked.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:24 PM | Comments |

South Park Bitch Slaps Ward Churchill

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My buddy Dr. Leopold Stotch called the other day and threatened to issue a fatwa against me if I didn't watch South Park. Episode 902 was riddled with swipes at Ward Churchill and his hippie followers. If you haven't seen it yet it's not too late. Comedy Central will be showing the episode again tonight and tomorrow.

Kevin at Student Con also noticed how Trey and Matt slapped that bitch Ward Churchill down too:

UC, Boulder "know-it-all college hippies" taking over the small Colorado town? The reference to the Ward Churchill saga when one of the hippies calls Cartman a "little Eichman?" The lesson learned about the laziness and selfishness of the left? My favorite moment from the show:

Kyle (or Stan): "Man, I didn't know that corporations were so bad."
Hippy: "You just haven't gone to college yet; I just finished my first semester."

Let me add that the 'little Eichmann' phrase was used more than once. Classic.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:49 PM | Comments |

Army of Ansar al-Sunna Attacks 'CIA' Vehicle (Images & Video)

This is an archive page. For the latest news on The Army of Ansar al-Sunnah and other terrorist groups in Iraq please go to the MAIN PAGE HERE.

UPDATE 5/10: Army of Ansar al-Sunna website releases images of Japanese hostage Akihiko Saito. Images, story, and link to website.
----------------------------------------------
The Army of Ansar al Sunna has released a video of what it claims to be an attack against a 'CIA' vehicle. The video may be downloaded here (see Mar 18). Images from the video are posted below. Images are not graphic.

Update: Evan Kohlmann has more. and it looks like Infovlad is finally going to a more blogger friendly format.

SITE offers this translation of the Ansar al-Sunna statement that accompanied the video:

URGENT: The Islamic Army of Iraq kills two CIA officers with video, March 17, 2005

In the name of God, the most gracious and merciful.

(Quranic verse)

Thanks to God of all peoples, the mighty and the best prayers and greetings to the profits of faith, his family and all his friends.

At 10:30, this morning of Safar 6, 1426, March 17, 2005, a brigade of the Army planted explosives on the free road's
intersection south of Bagdad in the district of al Yousefia, the explosives blew up a convoy of CIA American Officers, after
the Army got intelligence information that this convoy was to pass this way. The attack resulted in killing two American CIA Officers, Thanks to God.

God is great, glory to God.

What is glaringly missing from the video are any bodies. While there is blood in the car, it would seem that the 'CIA agents' escaped. Further, the only evidence to support al-Sunna's claim that the vehicle was operated by the 'CIA' is the fact that a pack of Marlboro's was in the car. Music CDs in the car appear to be of Arabic artists. An odd choice for a 'CIA agent' to listen to. There was, however, body armour left behind.

This would not be the first time the jihadis in Iraq claimed to kill a 'CIA agent'. As a matter of fact, the group likes to label any Iraqi working in any capacity (even truck drivers) for the Coalition or the Kurdish government a 'CIA agent'.

For instance:
CIA Agent Executed: Another Beheading Video
Beheaded man 'not CIA agent'
Beheading Victim Egyptian, Not American
Another Egyptian 'CIA Agent' Beheading Video

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By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:47 PM | Comments |

Congress Moves to Save Terri Schiavo's Life (UPDATED: The Murder Has Begun)

3:20 PM:

IT HAS BEGUN

Terry Cries when told she is about to be murdered.

My infant son seems to have about the same mental capacity as Terri. I dare any one of you to try starve him to death......

RELATED.

Another critical update 1:51 EDT: Flashing light at Drudge

"JUDGE RULES TERRI'S FEEDING TUBE CAN BE REMOVED"

AP Breaking:

The presiding judge in the case of Terri Schiavo ruled Friday that the feeding tube keeping the brain-damaged woman alive can be removed despite efforts by congressional Republicans to have her appear at congressional hearings.

Pinellas Circuit Judge George Greer refused a request from U.S. House attorneys to delay the removal, which he had previously ordered to take place at 1 p.m. EST. Greer determined that it should go forward about an hour after another judge issued a temporary delay blocking the tube's removal.

There was no immediate word on when the tube might be removed.

Peggy Noonan chimes in at WSJO:
At the heart of the case at this point is a question: Is Terri Schiavo brain-dead? That is, is remedy, healing, physiologically impossible?

No. Oddly enough anyone who sees the film and tape of her can see that her brain tells her lungs to breathe, that she can open her eyes, that she seems to respond at times and to some degree to her family. She can laugh. (I heard it this morning on the news. It's a childlike chuckle.) In the language of computers she appears not to be a broken hard drive but a computer in deep hibernation. She looks like one of those coma cases that wind up in the news because the patient, for no clear reason, snaps to and returns to life and says, "Is it 1983? Is there still McDonald's? Can I have a burger?"

Beth at MVRWC is live-blogging this. Chris Short, too.

Critical update 1:13 EDT: Yahoo News:

A state judge on Friday temporarily blocked the removal of the feeding tube for severely brain-damaged Terri Schiavo as congressional Republicans stepped up efforts to keep her alive.

Pinellas Circuit Court Chief Judge David Demers ordered that the feeding tube remain in place past a 1 p.m. EST deadline while fellow Judge George Greer, who is presiding over the Schiavo case, deals with conflicting legal issues.

The Senate Health Committee has requested that Terri Schiavo and her husband, Michael, appear at an official hearing on March 28.

The Pinellas Park hospice where Schiavo lives received a subpoena late Friday morning, spokeswoman Louise Cleary said. Officials there did not say who was subpoenaed or disclose their next steps.

Hat tip: Leopold Stotch

Matt (still not returning my e-mails) Drudge has this exclusive:

The Chairman of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pension (HELP) Committee, Mike Enzi (R-Wyoming) has requested Terri Schiavo to testify before his congressional committee, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned. In so doing it triggers legal or statutory protections for the witness, among those protections is that nothing can be done to cause harm or death to this individual.

Members of Congress went to the U.S. Attorney in DC to ask for a temporary restraining order to be issued by a judge, which protects Terri Schiavo from having her life support, including her feeding and hydration tubes, removed... [MORE]

Hat tip: Alicia

UPDATE: ABC News via Jeff Quinton:

Working against the clock, House lawmakers tried to prevent doctors in Florida from removing the feeding tube Friday from a severely brain-damaged woman.

In a two-pronged approach, a House committee was issuing congressional subpoenas to stop doctors from disconnecting the tube, while an attorney for the parents of the woman, Terri Schiavo, said he would ask a federal judge in Tampa to block the removal and review the actions of state courts.

Such habeas corpus appeals seek to require the government to justify its actions.

In a last-ditch attempt to stop the court-ordered removal, a House committee on Capitol Hill here decided early Friday morning to start an investigation into Schiavo's case and issue subpoenas ordering doctors and hospice administrators not to remove her feeding tubes and to keep her alive until that investigation was complete.

The effort by the House Government Reform Committee came after lawmakers in both Washington and Tallahassee failed in attempts to pass legislation to keep her husband, Michael Schiavo, from having the tube pulled despite heavy lobbying by Schiavo's parents.

Related satire: Congress Works to Outlaw 132nd Trimester Abortions; Michael Schiavo's Lawyers to Appeal

Joyner has a pretty good argument against the legislative move.

Ace also asks a relevant seperation of powers question.

Malkin offers a link to this Terri Schiavo news aggregator.

Chris Short offers the anti-big government argument against legilative involvement.

Others: The Corner, Captain Ed, La Shawn, Scared Monkeys

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:20 PM | Comments |

Swedish Hostage in Iraq Released, Ransom Paid

More background on Minas al-Yusifi can be found in my earlier posts here and here. Al-Yousifi is the leader of a Kurdish Christian political party, recently returned to Iraq after exile in Sweden since the 1084.

Can a day go by without some European country paying ransom so that terrorists in Iraq can buy more weapons to kill Americans? His captors had said he would be beheaded unless a $4 million dollar ransom was paid. How many IEDs do you think they can make with $4 million?AP:

An Iraqi-born Swede kidnapped in Iraq was released Friday after more than a month in captivity, Swedish and Iraqi officials said.

Minas Ibrahim al-Yousifi, reportedly the leader of the Christian Democratic Party in Iraq, called his children after his release, Swedish lawmaker Cecilia Wikstroem said after speaking by telephone to his family.

“He was very relieved but worn out,” she said. “He’s tired, of course, and needs to rest.”

Yonadam Kanna, a Christian Democratic politician in Iraq, said the hostage was released after the mediation of a Shiite cleric. He did not elaborate....

Wikstroem said the family did not say whether a ransom had been paid, but she added: “I think that’s the case. But I don’t have it confirmed.”

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:08 PM | Comments |

Amina Wadud Death Watch

What do you bet Amina Wadud gets murdered? The death sentence, after all, is the penalty for blasphemy under Islamic law. Wadud is about to become the first--that's right this is the year 2005 and she will be the first--Muslim woman to lead prayers in mixed company. Notice the very last line of the article:

Three New York mosques refused to host the service, Nomani said. It was moved to Synod House after a site that had earlier been selected for the service, an art gallery in SoHo, received a bomb threat.
hat tip: Bill Dauterieve

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:30 PM | Comments |

Soldier Returns from Iraq

Why we fight.

Why they fight.

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Any questions?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:48 PM | Comments |

Dutch Supplier for Chemical Ali Indicted for Role in Halabja Massacre

Here is a slideshow from the Kurdistan Regional Government on the Halabja massacre. The link is on the right side. Very graphic.

Reuters from Wired:

A Dutch businessman accused of complicity in war crimes and genocide for selling chemicals to Iraq knew Saddam Hussein would use them for poison gas attacks, prosecutors said on Friday.

Frans van Anraat, 62, is charged with supplying thousands of tons of agents for poison gas that Saddam's military used in the 1980-1988 war against Iran and against its own Kurdish population, including an attack on the town of Halabja in 1988.

Prosecutor Fred Teeven told a pre-trial hearing at the high-security court in Rotterdam that Van Anraat continued to supply chemicals after the Halabja attack, which killed an estimated 5,000 people 17 years ago this week.

"Van Anraat was conscious of ... the fact that his materials were going to be used for poison gas attacks," he said.

"The damage and grief caused will not be rapidly, if ever, forgotten."...

Saddam and his feared cousin Ali Hassan al-Majid, also known as "Chemical Ali," face trial for war crimes, including the Halabja attack, at a special tribunal in Iraq.

U.N. weapons inspectors have called Van Anraat one of the most important middlemen who supplied Iraq with chemical agents.

The first Dutchman to be tried on genocide-related charges, Van Anraat, who sat silently in court, faces up to life in prison if convicted. The next hearing has been scheduled for June. His trial is expected to begin later this year.

Van Anraat was first detained in Milan in 1989 following a U.S. request but was released after two months. He then fled to Iraq, where it is thought he stayed until the 2003 U.S.-led invasion, when he returned to the Netherlands through Syria.

The AIVD Dutch secret service provided Van Anraat with a mobile phone and helped him find housing when he returned to the Netherlands in 2003 and assured him he would not face prosecution, his lawyers said.

He was arrested by Dutch officials at a house in Amsterdam in December as he was preparing to leave the country.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:54 AM | Comments |

First Stage in European Caliphate About to Begin

Via Robert Spencer who got the article from Norwegian Kaffir (who's politically incorrect views might just get him a fatwa if he's not careful). IRNA (the English language propaganda arm of the mad mullahs of Iran):

A group of Muslims in the Dutch city of Amsterdam plans to set up the Muslim Democratic Party (MDP) at the end of May.

The party wants to compete in the upcoming local government elections in five cities and later also in the parliamentary elections, Dutch news agency ANP has reported.

The MDP will promote the interests of Muslims in the Netherlands, the agency quoted spokesman M. Jabri saying.

The initiators are currently holding talks with known and unknown Muslims to get the party going in the big cities.

Contacts are also being sought with non-Muslims, 'so that we have a balance within the executive', said Jabri.

"It is a matter of people who think the same way politically." The MDP has drawn up a provisional manifesto with the outline of the movement. Islam forms the basic point here.

The Palestinian question is also raised in the manifesto.

"The MDP declares solidarity with the peoples of the south in their fight against the neo-colonialism that is steered by the US and neo-liberal Europe, but also against the occupation and aggression of the US, its lackeys and internal dictators," according to the manifesto, quoted by ANP.

This might seem insignificant--after all, the Europeans have a lot of odd parties--if one was not aware of the Muslim notion of the umma, or Islamic nation.

And as the umma prepares to form its first political party on the continent, the deep ties betweem the mosques and radical Islamists in Europe are revealed in this Middle East Forum article by Lorenzo Vidino
(via No Pasaran):

But the Middle East is only one part of the Muslim world. Europe has become an incubator for Islamist thought and political development. Since the early 1960s, Muslim Brotherhood members and sympathizers have moved to Europe and slowly but steadily established a wide and well-organized network of mosques, charities, and Islamic organizations. Unlike the larger Islamic community, the Muslim Brotherhood's ultimate goal may not be simply "to help Muslims be the best citizens they can be," but rather to extend Islamic law throughout Europe and the United States

Four decades of teaching and cultivation have paid off. The student refugees who migrated from the Middle East forty years ago and their descendants now lead organizations that represent the local Muslim communities in their engagement with Europe's political elite. Funded by generous contributors from the Persian Gulf, they preside over a centralized network that spans nearly every European country.

These organizations represent themselves as mainstream, even as they continue to embrace the Brotherhood's radical views and maintain links to terrorists. With moderate rhetoric and well-spoken German, Dutch, and French, they have gained acceptance among European governments and media alike. Politicians across the political spectrum rush to engage them whenever an issue involving Muslims arises or, more parochially, when they seek the vote of the burgeoning Muslim community.

But, speaking Arabic or Turkish before their fellows Muslims, they drop their facade and embrace radicalism. While their representatives speak about interfaith dialogue and integration on television, their mosques preach hate and warn worshippers about the evils of Western society. While they publicly condemn the murder of commuters in Madrid and school children in Russia, they continue to raise money for Hamas and other terrorist organizations. Europeans, eager to create a dialogue with their increasingly disaffected Muslim minority, overlook this duplicity.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:09 AM | Comments |

Remember the Good Old Days, When the Taliban Ruled?

WaPo waxes nostalgic on the good old days when bin Laden had free reign in Central Asia and women were beaten for showing too much cheek bone:

A wave of crime in this southern Afghan city -- including Mohammed's killing two months ago and a bombing Thursday that killed at least five people -- has evoked a growing local nostalgia for the Taliban era of 1996 to 2001, when the extremist Islamic militia imposed law and order by draconian means.

Residents reached their boiling point last week, after a second kidnapped boy was killed. Hundreds of men poured into the streets, demanding that President Hamid Karzai fire the provincial governor and police chief. Some threw rocks at military vehicles and chanted, "Down with the warlords!" Witnesses recalled some adding, "Bring back the Taliban!"

Both provincial officials are former militia leaders -- commonly called warlords in Afghanistan -- whose fighters reportedly preyed on residents before they were driven out by the Taliban. They regained power, like a number of other current officials, by joining the U.S.-led military forces that defeated the Taliban in late 2001.

I think this quote pretty much sums it up:
"We are savage, cruel people"
Indeed.

Barbara O’Brien *shock* argues that this is another sign of Shrimp-Chub-Bush's failure.

Parenthetically, I had the misfortune of recieving a copy of Ms. O'Brien's book and mistakingly read it. The shocking thing was that the publisher sent it to me hoping I would adopt it for a text in my Mass Media and Politics class. This is not an academic work by any standard. Stick to blogging Barbara.

Tim Graham notes that this is on the front page. Nice.

Nick Gillespie and Ranting Profs also chime in (via meme random)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:58 AM | Comments |

Jessica Alba Stripping

Call it part of my ongoing campaing for the anti-Talibanization of America and operation 'Site Meter'. Flea asks, we deliver. Here are some vidcaps from the upcoming Bruce Willis movie Sin City. The trailors can be downloaded here. All pics are stricly PG. Shhh, don't let Aylward know about these.......What? They don't call me Pimptastik Rusty Wicked for nothing!!

Jessicaalbastripper1.jpg

Jessicaalbastripper.jpg

Jessicaalbastripper2.jpg

Jessicaalbastripper3.jpg

Jessicaalbastripper4.jpg

Jessicaalbastripper5.jpg

Jessicaalbastripper6.jpg

Bruce, you're looking the wrong way!!

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Supersized publicity photos from The Superficial.

And another one.

Linked to OTB because Joyner knows what I'm talkin about....and Kevin

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:29 AM | Comments |

US Revokes Indian Officials Visa After Muslim Objections

The State Department has revoked the visa of a leader of one of India's province's, citing his role in the massacre of Muslims in Gujarat. New Kerela:

In a major embarrassment to the Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi, the United States on Friday revoked the visa to him in wake of the allegations of ignoring widespread anti-Muslim killings in 2002 in Gujarat.

About 1,000 people, mostly Muslims, were hacked, burned or beaten to death in the state, after 59 Hindu kar sevaks died in the S-6 coach of Sabarmati Express, because of fire breaking up.

Modi has denied accusations that he deliberately did nothing to stop the killing of Muslims during the riots in early 2002, and said police took firm action.

Witnesses and survivors said police did nothing to stop Hindu mobs attacking Muslims and in some cases herded victims into the hands of their killers. Human rights groups put the death toll as high as 2,500....

The US decision came after some Muslim and liberal groups campaigned in the United States against the planned visit and petitioned the State Department to revoke his visa on the ground that he used his position in government to violate religious freedom.

India had this response:

The Indian Foreign Ministry called in the U.S. deputy chief of mission in New Delhi on Friday for consultations.

"This action on the part of the U.S. embassy is uncalled for and displays lack of courtesy and sensitivity towards a constitutionally elected chief minister of a state of India," the ministry said in a statement.

"The reasons that have been advanced are entirely unacceptable," BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, a former finance and foreign minister, told reporters.
Modi, known for his fiery nationalist rhetoric, lashed out at the United States.

"This decision of the American government is an insult to the Indian constitution. It is their way of casting aspersions on the sovereignty of India," Modi told a news conference in Ahmedabad, Gujarat's main city.

Before you go crying dhimmi, New Kerela also reports this Indian News Service piece of what seems pretty relevant information:
Almost two years before the US denied Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi a visa, a State Department report on global human rights had held him responsible for the 2002 sectarian violence in his state.

The 2003 edition of Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, prepared annually by the US Department of State, had found Modi guilty of fuelling violence that it claimed had resulted in the deaths of "an estimated 2,000 Muslims".

It was on the basis of this report that the US invoked against Modi a law that makes any foreign government official guilty of serious violations of religious freedom ineligible for a visa.

Citing allegations by civil society groups, the US report had said the Gujarat police and government did little to stop the violence promptly and at times even encouraged or assisted Hindu fundamentalists in perpetrating violent acts.

"Human rights activists reported that the Gujarat police received specific instructions not to take action to prevent a possible violent reaction to the Feb 27 attack by Muslims on a train in Godhra," the report said.

"These observers asserted that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi personally told Ahmedabad police officials on Feb 27 to allow Hindus two days to react 'peacefully' to the Godhra incident.

"The police reportedly told Muslim victims, 'We don't have orders to help you'," it said.

The US report also quoted extensively from the findings of India's National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to substantiate its charges against Modi.

"The NHRC held the Gujarat government responsible for the riots and accused it of a complicity that was tacit if not explicit," the US report said.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:27 AM | Comments |

March 17, 2005

Congress Works to Outlaw 132nd Trimester Abortions; Michael Schiavo's Lawyers to Appeal

The United States Congress frantically continues working to reconcile two ultra-late-term abortion bills before Congressmen go home for the Easter holidays. The Jawa Report's Washington bureau chief, Dale Gribble, has been following the legislation.

The Senate has a narrowly focused bill that deals only with the planned abortion of Terri Schiavo, allowing her standing in federal court, which would immediately stay a Florida court's ruling which would allow Planned Parenthood's Boca Raton office to perform the controversial abortion procedure, now scheduled for March 18.

The House, however, passed a more broadly defined bill on Wednesday night. In it, "persons" — defined as "any born individual who is presently outside the womb and in at least the 50th trimester of life" — are given the right to take their case to federal court after the state court route has been exhausted. The House bill does not grant an automatic stay for Schiavo despite support from House leaders like the ultra-conservative Rep. Tom DeLay, the House Majority Leader.

But even with an agreement between the Senate and House, sources told The Jawa Report on Thursday that Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) has "dug in" against passage of the Senate bill by unanimous consent. He is a well-known pro-choice advocate and in a recent press statement said that,

Michael Schiavo has a right to terminate his wife's life. His wife's body belongs to him. What he does with Terri's body is nobody elses busines.
Wyden then added in a press-conference on the steps of Capital Hill,
My personal view is that 132nd trimester abortions are wrong. However, I believe that such decisions are best left to a couple and their doctor.
Wyden's stance could force the Senate to move to cut off debate, setting up a process that could give Wyden and possibly other Democrats, like Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), an opportunity to express their opposition. However, other Democrats oppose letting Schiavo's case end at the state court.

Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) has said he will hold up adjournment of the Senate for Easter recess, scheduled to begin Friday and last two weeks, until a vote is taken on this bill. Santorum is a staunch ultra-late-term abortion opponent and is strongly against aborting Terri Schiavo. Santorum's opposition to abortions has been termed "radical" by many moderates because of his support for a Constitutional Amendment which would ban all abortions after the 25th trimester.

The debate comes as Schiavo's parents appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, and Florida Circuit Court Judge George Greer scheduled a hearing Thursday to consider a request from the state to halt the abortion. Judge Greer, in a related case, ruled that the Pope should be removed from life support because people in a vegetative state--even when such vegatables can 'laugh', 'pray', and 'bless the masses'--serve no useful social function.

Florida's Legislature is also taking action similar to that of Congress. A similar state law passed in 2003 was later declared unconstitutional by the Florida Supreme Court. The Florida Supreme Court, citing Roe v. Wade, had claimed that:

among the penumbra of rights gauranteed in the US Constitution was the right to abort spouses at any time during the first 200 trimesters of life.
"However," said the majority opinion, "the state may pass such laws deemed necessary to protect the welfare of society after that time, provided such laws are narrowly taylored and do not impede the doctor-patient-patient's wife relationship."

Schiavo, 41, has been at the center of a long and bitter court battle between her parents and her husband, who wants to have the ultra-late-term abortion performed.

In a press-release from the White House today, President Bush said:

The case of Terri Schiavo raises complex issues. Yet in instances like this one, where there are serious questions and substantial doubts, our society, our laws, and our courts should have a presumption in favor of life. Those who live at the mercy of others deserve our special care and concern. It should be our goal as a nation to build a culture of life, where all Americans are valued, welcomed, and protected and that culture of life must extend even those in the 132nd trimester of life.
Actor and pro-life advocate Mel Gibson added the fuel to the fire to keep ultra-late-term abortion illegal when he sent the following fax to the parents of Terri Schiavo:
I fully support the efforts of Mr. & Mrs. Schindler [Terri's parents] to save the life of their daughter, from a cruel starvation.

Terri's husband should relinquish his right to an abortion and turn the 132nd trimester fetus over to the Schindler's care.

The outlook of 'Terri's Law' was in seriuos jeapordy as the House and Senate could not agree on the scope of the bill. Anticipating the delay, attorney's for the Schindler family have filed an emergency appeal to the US Supreme Court asking for an injunctive stay on the Florida Court's ruling.

George Felos, Michael Schiavo’s lead attorney, filed an immediate response to the motion. NARAL Pro-Choice America and Planned Parenthood also filed an amicus curae brief in support of Michael Schiavo's right to an ultra-late-term abortion.

"Trying to outlaw Mr. Schiavo's clear Constitutional right to do what he pleases with his wife's body is an outrageous attempt by Congress to interfere with the workings of the judicial branch," said NARAL spokesperson Evelyn Becker in a written press-release. "Today the right-wing ideologues are trying to take away Mr. Schiavo's right to a 132nd trimester abortion. If they succeed, then this country may well be on its way back to the days when 132nd term abortions were performed by unlicensed doctors in back alleys under unsanitary conditions, contraceptives were outlawed, homosexuals were rounded up, and negros were forced to ride in the back of the bus."

UPDATE: House to meet in morning to vote on ultra-late-term abortion bill, over Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) objections.

UPDATE II: Related from Scrappleface

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 06:59 PM | Comments |

UAE Gives Pregnant Woman 150 Lashes for Adultery

I remember reading the Scarlet Letter as a freshman in high school. Our English teacher assigned the class to wear a letter on our chests to symbolize a vice we wish we could give up. Throughout the day we were supposed to wear the thing to get us to feel compassion for Hester Prynne.....You know, those New England Puritans aren't looking so bad any more.....Gulf News (via Tigerhawk):

A maid was sentenced to 150 lashes yesterday for getting pregnant out of wedlock. A Sharia Court official said the maid's UAE national sponsor filed a case with police accusing N.S.T of committing adultery and being pregnant.

Her case was referred to the public prosecution department and she was ordered to take a pregnancy test, which came back positive.

She refused to reveal the name of the child's father, despite being interrogated by the police and the public prosecutor.

The public prosecution department referred her to the emirate's Sharia Court.

She refused to identify her lover again.

The court sentenced her to 150 lashes, to be administered in two stages. She will then be deported.

The woman is lucky, the maximum sentence for adultery under Islamic law is death by stoning.

The Gates of Vienna (via Bill's Comments) notes that the poor woman is probably a national of the Philippines.

If you want to see pictures of what this form of punishment is like click here. (WARNING: Graphic) or scroll down.

Courtesy: Faith Freedom

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:21 PM | Comments |

Spain Pays Ransom, Hostage Released

Hostage taking is already the #2 source of cash for Columbian Maoist rebels (next to taxing cocaine), it is fast becoming the #2 source of cash (#1 is still 'charitable donations') for Islamist insurgents in Iraq. Yahoo News:

An Iraqi-born Spanish businessman kidnapped in Baghdad several weeks ago has been freed after a ransom was paid, Spain's leading daily reported.

El Pais reported that the kidnapped man, identified only by his initials, UAH, was freed on Tuesday, El Pais said, citing unidentified government sources.

The paper said the sources refused to give details of the ransom paid so as not to put people involved in the operation at risk.

The man was said to have Spanish nationality and passport since 2000, and for the past 30 years has lived in Spain, where he runs a translation firm and a real estate company, the daily said.

(hat tip: Charles Johnson)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:03 PM | Comments |

Former Russian PM Escapes Assassination Attempt (UPDATED)

Let me disagree with the Reliapundit on this one, although he's right to think the former top KGB man is a suspect. But Putin is only one suspect in this case, and it is doubtful that he was behind this.

I spent a year studying in Moscow and, trust me on this one, Anatoly Chubais has plenty of enemies. Chubais was the Prime Minister of Russia, closely allied to Boris Yeltsin, who oversaw the privatization of state owned industry. As a result, a few oligarchs grew wealthy while millions lost everything. Enemies a plenty.

Chubais is now head of a state run energy company and thus in close contact with many criminal elements. This is not beyond the mafia's doing. The mafia walked into a hotel run by a friend of mine one day and unloaded several hundred rounds into his Russian business partner simply because the hotel refused to lease space for a disco. They were never caught.

As a member of government, he could also have been targetted by Chechen terrorists. Chubais was Prime Minister when Chechnya declared independence and Russia responded with a massive invasion. Whenever something that might be construed as terrorism happens in Russia, it's wise to keep the Chechen mujahadin as part of the usual suspects. UPDATE: Scroll past article for possible motives for Chechen rebels to assassinate Chubais.Reuters:

Anatoly Chubais, head of Russia's state power monopoly, has survived an assassination attempt by assailants who detonated a roadside bomb and sprayed his convoy with a hail of automatic gunfire.

The 49-year-old Chubais, one of Russia's best-known figures, came to prominence as the architect of post-Soviet economic reforms under which two dozen "oligarchs" acquired vast wealth while ordinary people suffered a huge slump in living standards.

He is now chief executive of Unified Energy System, and the prime mover behind reforms to introduce competition to the power sector of the world's largest country.

Chubais told a hastily arranged press briefing that he had been aware of a plan to kill him, but would not say who he suspected of carrying out the attack.

"I have an idea of who could have taken out a contract on me," a shaken but defiant Chubais said from the safety of UES headquarters in Moscow after the attempt. "We had reason to believe something like this might happen."

Chubais was travelling to work from his country home along a narrow stretch of the Minsk Highway at 9:30 a.m. (6.30 a.m. British time) when a roadside bomb rocked his two-car cortege and two attackers opened fire with automatic weapons.

Chubais said his armoured BMW had been able to flee the scene despite being hit in the windscreen, hood and front tyre.

Security guards for Chubais travelling in a Mitsubishi Lancer returned fire at the hitmen, who later escaped.

Police said the bomb blast had a force equivalent to at least 500 grams of TNT. Television footage from the scene showed a large crater at the side of a two-way highway through forest.

UPDATE: Why would Chechen terrorists target Chubais?

Remember that Chechen rebel leader Aslan Maskhadov was recently killed by Russian forces. Anotoly Chubais was one of the main proponents of military strikes against Chechnya. For instance, in 1999 when leading Grigory Yavlinsky called for a pause in the bombing of Chechnya, Chubais called this former ally of the democratic movement a 'traitor'.

And how was Chubai seen by the Chechen rebels? Their propaganda wing calls Chubai a 'fascist' and claim one of his goals (linking Chubai to Putin) is 'extermination of the Chechens'.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:01 PM | Comments |

360 Panorama of Lebanon Protest

Possibly the coolest photo I have ever seen. (via Instapundit)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:54 PM | Comments |

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

The next round is on me. Lift your glasses and celebrate the nation that is 1/64th mine by right of birth with The Jawa Report's second-annual toast to Eire:

CLICK TO JOIN TOAST

UPDATE: But seriuosly, the thing about the Irish that I like the most (besides those hot redheads) is that they can take a joke.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:30 PM | Comments |

Brit Hume Still Not Resigning....

...Oliver Willis in full denial mode. We like to call him 'Baghdad Ollie'.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:09 PM | Comments |

Seattle: Grunge, Microsoft, anti-Americanism....

I spent five days at a conference in Seattle once. It was four days too long. Here's why.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:35 PM | Comments |

Leadership Standards: Another Peeve

by Demosophist

On Bill Maher tonight I heard the host say something to the effect that "Well yeah, Bush had a list of reasons for invading Iraq and about the fourth one down had to do with regime change to rid the people of that brutal murderous dictator. But he obviously lied about everything else." And a similar bit of dissembling wisdom popped out the other night on Dennis Miller, from some panel guest whose name I have no good reason to recall. Well, I could waste time, as did David Horowitz on the Miller show, recounting how a lot of people made quite a big fuss about regime change and the "suffering of the Iraqi people." But I recall almost no one on the left saying anything like that, other than the usual suspects: Paul Berman (who wrote a book about it), Bernard Kouchner, and Chris Hitchens, as well as a few bloggers like Marc Danziger on Winds of Change. And all of those folks have subsequently been disowned and shunned by many of their ideological compatriots.

Moreover, the democratic transformation of the Middle East was always my primary reason for supporting the invasion, no matter what the odds of success. (Just read my blog, if you doubt it.) It's true that I was concerned about WMD, but only to the extent that I was hugely relieved we were about to put that worry out of the way as well. And in all of the exhaustive and exhausting sessions I participated in on this topic with folks on the anti-war left, not one single person... not one single person, felt it remotely reasonable to suggest that a democratic transformation of the Middle East made sense, or had much merit even if it could be accomplished. Not one! It wasn't as though anyone said, as they're claiming now: " Yeah that objective would just be so-o-o-o worthwhile, but dammit Bush isn't being straight about his intentions, and if he were, well I'd be right behind him."

Nope, I don't recall anyone saying that.

So yeah, Maher and these others might have a point had they made it before March 2003, but they didn't.[1] Which means that their judgment on this matter just plain sucked. Sorry, but there's no other way to put it. And what's more, the evil Neocons were not only right, but they knew they were right from the start. And maintaining a position that is ultimately vindicated, in the face of massive social intimidaton, subjected to taunts of "Nazi" or "fascist" by former friends, etc.,... well, that's simply what leadership has always been about, since somebody erroneously credited the serpent with having a clue.

So now these folks, still whining in emphatic sidebars about their victimization in "the great deception," are leaping on the bandwagon... enthusiastically. Which would be fine I guess, except that they've overdoing it claiming that the transformation of the Middle East now looks like a done deal, just because the odds seem about even finally. And that's neither a sophomoric flip nor an over-the-hill flop, you know.

[1] Somone somewhere along the line must have made some anemic statement that Bush ought to trot out the pro-democracy argument more often, but not because they believed it. Rather, it was because they were certain it would be an easy argument to put down. Either that, or it just provided them an opportunity to jauntily affect an ironic smile at the silly notion that McChimpyBushHitlerHalliburton would be, of all things, pro-democracy. Ha. Ha.

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and Anticipatory Retaliation)

By Demosophist at 12:56 AM | Comments |

March 16, 2005

Coup in Syria?

UPDATE 3/17 pm: Publius Pundit has word from Syria that everything seems normal and that this information is probably false.

I've no idea how reliable a source the Lebanese Foundation for Peace is, but I thought you might want to read this (via Evariste at Discarded Lies):

DAMASCUS REBELLION UPDATE:

No newspapers are getting in or out of Syria, the media is controlled very tight, and the Syrian scene witnessed a dramatic, security deterioration the last 24 hours.

Precise Intelligence reports coming from Syria indicated massive army troops deployment around the capital Damascus. Most of the military Barracks of the Syrian Army around Damascus gave allegiance to the dissidents: Syrian Interior Minister Ghazi Kanaan and General Ali Safi. These people in the Syrian Army were against the withdrawal from Lebanon.

It is known that President Bashar Assad is in the city of Alleppo, assessing the internal situation within Syria and trying to organize a "forced" return to Damascus.

We will provide you with additional details as soon as we have them.

[NOTE: The Syrian military General backing Ghazi Kanaan’s movement is General Ali Safi and not Madi as originally reported by error.
The Lebanese Foundation for Peace apologizes for this error of publishing.]
The Intelligence Hour for Syria and Lebanon
Special Flash: Damascus, Syria

A Coup d' Etat took place in Damascus late last night. Intelligence reports coming from within the Syrian Military Command indicate the following:

A rebellion split The Syrian Army in two factions .

Since yesterday , Damascus is under the de facto control of the Syrian Army, under the command of Syrian Interior Minister Ghazi Kanaan, and supported by Syrian Intelligence General Rustom Ghazaleh, Syrian military General Ali Safi, and Firas Tlass son of former Minister of Defence, Mustafa Tlass. The group rebelled against the decision of President Bashar el Assad to withdraw from Lebanon and seized the Damascus military yesterday.

Around 3 am, Damascus time, the Syrian Air Force bombarded two military airfields around Damascus, the Air force base of Dumair, and the Air force base of Katana. Also, late night around 3 am, the Syrian Air force bombarded military positions of the Syrian Army west of the city of Homs.

President Bachar el Assad retreated secretly to the city of Aleppo where he is temporarily holding ground. He is massing special forces troops loyal to him and preparing himself to take back Damascus by force .

The Syrian President left in Damascus his brother in Law, Syrian Military Intelligence Chief General Assef Shawkat to negotiate a settlement with the dissidents. The situation within the Syrian military was very tense for a week and exploded yesterday. The dissident group took control of Damascus as they were very upset at the Lebanon withdrawal for they left behind a billion dollar industry.

Interesting.....

UPDATE: Very late....getting slammed (for this time of night) with Google hits for word combinations of "military coup Syria" "Syrian coup" "Damascus coup" etc......

....something is afoot.

UPDATE II: No confirmation. Perhaps this is just a case of rumors flying and we're simply reinforcing those rumors by publishing them?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:45 PM | Comments |

Spring Break Bleg

Reminder: I'm on Spring Break. If you have an interesting post or a news item, please e-mail me with it. That way I don't spend all day surfing the web for this stuff.

Thanks,
The Management

PS-and by "interesting" I don't mean the latest Jessica Alba FHM spread!

PPS-Where are my collaboraters on this thing? Demosophist?.... BRD? Interested Participant? ... Bueller? Any one...?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:58 PM | Comments |

Iran Hangs Man in Public (Images)

Below are images of you're mullahs at work. I don't really have a problem with the death penalty in the abstract. The man was convicted of multiple counts of rape and murder. But the mad mullahs also have a tendency to do this sort of thing to the victims of rape too.

Why does the term barbaric suddenly come to mind?

And we wonder why so many young Persians resist the tyrrany of the Islamic Republic?

UPDATE: Ive moved all images below because some may find them offensive.

UPDATE II: Joyner takes the legal angle on this one and comes down on the side of civilization.

Volokh, on the other hand, seems to take it for granted that Iran's sharia court system actually convicted the right man.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:51 PM | Comments |

Shhhh! I'm Hunting Moonbats

Michelle Malkin on the upcoming Million Moonbat March.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:28 PM | Comments |

Wolfowitz to Head World Bank: World Reacts (UPDATED)

President Bush has nominated Paul Wolfowitz to head the World Bank. World, blog, and tin-foil hat reaction below.

AP in The Guardian:

President Bush on Wednesday tapped Defense Deputy Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, who has been a lightning rod for criticism of the U.S. invasion of Iraq and other defense policies, to take over as head of the World Bank....

He was regarded as more academic and ideological than his boss, Rumsfeld. Wolfowitz was among the most forceful of those in the Bush administration in arguing that Iraq's Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, and he had predicted that Americans would be welcomed as liberators rather than occupiers once they toppled Saddam's government....

Wolfowitz, a veteran of six administrations, has earned a reputation for being a foreign policy hawk - the view that the United States should use its superpower status to push for reforms in other nations. A conservative scholar, Wolfowitz, before taking over the Defense Department post, had served as dean and professor of international relations at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of The Johns Hopkins University.

Administration supporters of Wolfowitz said Wednesday he is suited for the World Bank post and pointed to his management experiences at the Pentagon and his diplomatic experience at the State Department. He had served as assistant secretary of State for east Asia during the Philippine transition to democracy. He also served as U.S. ambassador to Indonesia.

Telegraph:
George W Bush, the American president has nominated defense deputy secretary Paul Wolfowitz to take over as head of the World Bank.

Mr Bush described Mr Wolfowitz as "a compassionate, decent man who will do a fine job at the World Bank. That's why I put him up."

James Wolfensohn, the current president of the 184-nation development bank, is due to resign on June 1, at the end of his second five-year term

UPDATE: Reuters:
Several international groups including Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, and ActionAid called Wolfowitz a bad choice. Greenpeace expressed concern that Wolfowitz would "put U.S. and oil industry interests" ahead of development.
Wolfowitz (that name sounds awfully Hebrew) is best know for being the chief noeconsevative (read J-O-O) advocate of regime change in Iraq.

Prediction from Muslim Press, DU, and Zeropeans: Zionist Jew to Head up World Bank: More Evidence Jews Run Worldwide Banking System.

Any takers on that bet?

Oh wait, I didn't even finish the post yet when....

Turkish Press (which doesn't cite the original source as AFP, a French news service):

US President George W. Bush risked inflaming global opinion Wednesday by putting forward his deeply controversial deputy defence secretary, Paul Wolfowitz, to become World Bank chief.

In a move that could undermine the new thaw in transatlantic relations, Bush said he wanted Donald Rumsfeld's number two at the Pentagon to take over in a role that is central to global development.

Just wait, it will get worse....

He is also held in deep suspicion as a central figure in the neoconservative movement, which wants the United States to impose its vision of liberal democracy and free-market economics on the world....

But the choice of Wolfowitz could test the transatlantic consensus on the top appointments at the World Bank and IMF as never before, after Bush last month visited Brussels to consolidate a post-Iraq thaw in US-Europe relations....

But Steve Clemons of the New America Foundation said that the Wolfowitz pick was a worrying pointer for Bush's foreign-policy intentions coming after the choice of another arch-hawk, John Bolton, to be United Nations ambassador.

"The message is that neoconservatism maintains a tenacious, tight grip on US foreign policy and that the world's most important multilateral institutions need to be disciplined to be responsive to a more narrow American parochialism in global affairs," he commented.AFP (France) in a Mauritanian publication:

Wolfowitz, 61, incurred the wrath of many European countries as a prime mover behind the war in Iraq.

He is also held in deep suspicion as a central figure in the "neoconservative" movement, which wants the United States to impose its vision of liberal democracy and free-market economics on the world.

Al Jazeera terrorist news is surprisingly subdued in their English version:
Deputy US Defence Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, one of the main advocates for the Iraq war, is President George Bush's choice for World Bank president, according to administration officials...

Wolfowitz is a deeply controversial figure in Europe because of his role in designing and promoting the Iraq war....

He has also been a frequent target of criticism from congressional Democrats for what they called his "rosy" assessments of the Iraq war. Before the invasion, he assured Congress: "We are dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction and relatively soon."

The selection follows Bush's controversial decision to nominate John Bolton, another leading administration hawk, to be US ambassador to the United Nations.

BBC News runs with this headline:
US hawk named to run World Bank
and adds this, just in case you didn't already know that he was, you know a "neocon":
Mr Wolfowitz is a deeply controversial figure in US politics, the BBC's Justin Webb reports from Washington.

He is associated with the so-called "neo-conservatives" - senior figures in and around the Bush administration who believe that America needs to be very active in pressing the case for its values around the world, our correspondent says.

Democratic Underground Reacts: (hat tip: Charles Johnson)

8. but when I told people the neocons want to take over 4 yrs ago... they made tinfoil hat comments and called me a conspiracy theorist....they also denied that neocons even existed. I'm very, very sorry to have been right.

22. We are right there with you.It hurts just a little/maybe a lot to have to sit here and watch this all happen. We're sorry too.

Have you wallpapered yet in tin foil, it helps a little, (we've become able to come to terms with being "conspiracy" theorists), maybe now all we need is a group support organization like AA?

50. The last 4 years conspiracy theories have been better guides to predicting the future than coincidence theories. Sadly...

And the money shot:

15. Link here Related: If you are interested in the Federal reserve and you want to know who owns this planet...
http://tvnewslies.org/cart/view_product.php?product=MON... FYI.

Link leads to this:

THE MONEY MASTERS DVD is a 3 1/2 hour non-fiction, historical documentary that traces the origins of the political power structure that rules our nation and the world today. The modern political power structure has its roots in the hidden manipulation and accumulation of gold and other forms of money.
Now what was that about the tin-foil?

OTB has some pretty good analysis of Wolfowitz's nomination in light of other nominations.

UPDATE:

Kos is predictable:

So you help drag the nation into a bloody war with no exit strategy, cost the country $200 billion and counting, 1,500 American deaths and counting, tens of thousands of physical and mental injuries, and counting, and untold numbers of Iraqi dead.

All on false pretenses, with no real understanding of how our troops would be received.

How are you punished?

Another "fuck you" from Bush to the world community. Mind boggling.

LOL!

Drum, always more subdued, but equally nutty as armchair psychologist:

I never understood the wish fulfillment fantasies of people who thought Bush might change in his second term — he's obviously a guy with only one gear and a profound need to crush his enemies — but I wonder if anyone still believes this? If so, it's time to face the music. It's going to be a long four years.

Yglesias pretty well sums up what I assume to be the moderate Democratic response:

I'm going to stake out a radically moderate view on this and say that I'd like to actually know something about Wolfowitz's views on what the World Bank does before offering judgment. Preventative wars are not, I take it, something the Bank head is able to launch.

UPDATE: Check out the more hard core Bush hating left.

Meat Eating Leftist:

This is a perftect fit for Wolfowitz. He wants to do all of the above but only posthumously after a U.S. invasion of these poor nations. Good. Great...

This guy is another shining example of the chimp appointing people to leadership positions whose agenda and interests run counter to the organization or position they hold.

Oh, man. (Rusty wipes tears of laughter from face).

But it gets even funnier. CN Todd must have been up late reading his Chomsky:

But certainly since the 80s, the World Bank along with the IMF have become absolutely essential arms of U.S. imperialism: a means for imposing drastic economic conditions on developing countries in exchange for loans that have lead to further crisis, economic downturn, increased poverty and unemployment, and the further accumulation of wealth among the transnational capitalist class.....

That Mr. Wolfowitz is comfortable in the roll of imperialist crusader should already have been evident

Oh man, that is classic! LOL.

Other Blog Reaction: Digger, Galvin Opinion, Taegen Goddard, CommonSense Desk, Jeff Jarvis, Tom Carter, Boston Dreamer, Waveflux, Instapundit, David Corn

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:19 PM | Comments |

Al Jazeera Compares Abu Ghraib to Holocaust

Click for bigger image.

This is why the jihadis fight us. They believe this stuff.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:45 AM | Comments |

Pirates Sieze Two Japanese Hostages

Yes, you heard that right, pirates. What is missing from this report is that the 'pirates' are often GAM rebels who wish to set up an Islamist state in Indonesia's Northern Aceh province. Money from piracy is used to fund the insurgency in the same way that hostages and drugs are used elsewhere.

BBC:

Armed pirates have kidnapped two Japanese and a Filipino from a tugboat in the Malacca Strait. The pirates struck on Monday night and seized money and documents from the Japanese-registered boat.

Indonesia sent three navy ships to the area, though officials said the pirates could now be in Malaysian waters.

The attack followed a raid by 35 pirates, armed with rocket launchers, who boarded an Indonesian-owned tanker on Saturday and took two hostages.

And check out the upside to last December's tsunamai:
Some 37 acts of piracy were recorded there last year but there has been a sharp fall in reported attacks after December's tsunami in the Indian Ocean.

Some experts said the disaster could have killed many pirates and destroyed their boats, while others believed the presence of international troops in the region deterred attacks.

The Jakarta government, of course, is also suspicious that GAM is behind the hostage taking. Jakarta Post:
Indonesian separatist rebels may have carried out the armed attack on a Japanese tugboat in the Malacca Strait and the kidnapping of three crewmen, Malaysia's marine police said Wednesday.

"The pirates are from Indonesia. They may be GAM rebels. I will not rule it out," Mokhtar Othman, operations officer for Malaysia's northern region marine police, told AFP.

Mokhtar said the fact the pirates were well armed and "had something like a rocket launcher" pointed to the involvement of Free Aceh Movement (GAM) rebels, who since 1976 have been waging a revolt in the north of Sumatra island.

And the thugs have done this before. Xinhua:
The attack is believed to be the work of the same pirates who preyed on two other vessels in the Straits of Malacca over the past two weeks.

The incidents also happened in roughly the same area which is only about 20 nautical miles off the maritime borders of Indonesia and Malaysia, enabling them to make quick get-aways.

Last Saturday, 35 pirates armed with machine guns and rocket launchers stormed a tanker which was on its way from Samirinda in Kalimantan to Belawan in Sumatra. The captain and chief engineer were abducted.

On March 2, four men in a fishing boat kidnapped a tugboat captain and his Indonesian chief officer.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:52 AM | Comments |

Iraqis: Italians Not Cooperating in Sgrena Investigation

So, the Italians pay ransom for the release of a woman who was in no danger of being harmed. The money is used by insurgents to buy weapons to kill Italians. Italy not cooperating in finding Giuliana Sgrena's captors. Italians announce withdrawal from Iraq. Sgrena's captors use money to kill Americans instead. I'm speechless.

Oh, and check this new message from al Qaeda to Italy (via LGF) “Jihad (holy war) has started to bear fruit.”

New York Times:

Iraqi investigators who are trying to find the kidnappers of the Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena say their work has been stymied by a lack of cooperation from the Italian intelligence services that won her release exactly a month after she was abducted on Feb. 4.

The Iraqi investigators say they conducted as many as half a dozen raids in a northwest Baghdad neighborhood where they think Ms. Sgrena, 56, a reporter for the far-left Rome daily Il Manifesto, was being held. But the kidnappers slipped through their fingers, and she was released after the abductors negotiated with Italian intelligence agents. One of those agents was killed when American troops fired on the car taking Ms. Sgrena to freedom.

Even after her release, Italian officials have refused to share information with the Iraqis, said Col. Jabbar Anwar, chief of the major crimes unit in the sector of Baghdad that includes Gazalea, the neighborhood where she was thought to be held.

And in the "no-shit-sherlock department":
The ring that committed the kidnapping was a profit-making organization that is likely to repeat the crime, he said.
And in the "When you hang around with and sympathize with terrorists" department:
Colonel Jabbar and a second officer in the crimes unit said the investigation suggested that the kidnappers were tipped off to Ms. Sgrena's itinerary on the day she was seized. On Feb. 4, Ms. Sgrena went to a district near the University of Baghdad to conduct interviews at a Sunni mosque where refugees from Falluja had been staying.....

Security guards at the mosque gate were acting suspiciously, Mr. Pagetti said. "They were asking us how many weapons we have," he said, "how many foreigners and if we had a second car."...

The Iraqi investigators say eight kidnappers brandishing pistols and Kalashnikovs, their faces hidden by head cloths, had arrived in a gray Opel and a black Kia. Witnesses heard Ms. Sgrena scream as the kidnapping unfolded.

Her frightened driver neglected to inform a nearby university guard. The driver was later detained by the police and is still being held, according to the second officer in the crimes unit.....

Burlesconi, you spineless fool:
Information from the Italians, Colonel Jabbar asserted, could have made the difference in cracking the case and bringing the kidnappers to justice. Instead, he said, his investigators saw the lines of communication shut down once the Italians began negotiating with the kidnappers.
Hat tip Phil.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:50 AM | Comments |

Thanks, I have a hangover (Religion of Peace Update)

jawamillion.gifThanks one and all for helping me celebrate 1 million visitors. I'm just coming off a pure squooshie syrup high, so pardon me today. My head, it hurts!

Religion of Peace Update: Millions and Millions killed

Saudis beheaded two more gay men yesterday. Now about that whole anti-gay marriage=intolerance thing again.......meanwhile the 'Nazi' regime in Israel opens a new holocaust exhibit honoring the gays.

Teacher praises Osama bin Laden on Sept. 12th, 2001. Three years later said teacher becomes terrorist. Go figure.

Hirsi Ali may show film which offends Muslims in Netherlands, court rules. I don't know which is worse, Hirsi Ali's many death threats against her or the fact that this went to court in th first place.

Why would Syria need to stay in Lebanon when Iran is now supplying Hezbollah with tanks?

.....speaking of Iran, Robert Hayes was in Persia right before the revolution and says that the recent uprisings in Iran seem eerily familiar......(fingers crossed)

Our 'allies', the (spit) French, have sentenced a terrorist to 10 years for plotting to blow up the US embassy. His accomplices get one to nine years each.

Mommas don't let your babies grow up to be suicide-bombers. Unless of course you'ra Palestinian. I'm sure that poverty and hopelessness is what really creates terrorists, right? Er, I guess not.

Rember that one Seinfeld episode? Well it turns out there are good Protesters and there are bad Protesters.

On the good news front, democracy moves ever so slowly onward in Iraq.

And more good news from Jordan.

Here are a few other bloggie delights:

Jack Kemp's political career: RIP

Kewl: Interview with a Minuteman.

GM Roper is trying to replace American Warmonger as the new King of Blogs competition. He's got my vote.

Simon's Asian blog roundup is up.

Let's help Kerry keep his still unfulfilled pledge to release his military records. Hmm, I wonder what he could be hiding?

One time at the WPSA meeting a friend of mine got so hammered he was totally hitting on this skank......Man, what ever happened to Grimey?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:27 AM | Comments |

March 15, 2005

Sgrena's Mission Accomplished: Italy to Withdraw Troops

Giuliana Sgrena has finally gotten her way. Islamist media already attributes Italy's announced withdrawal as a response to the Sgrena debacle. Expect more hostage taking (real or feigned) immediately.

Italy will start to withdraw its troops from Iraq this September, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has said.

"We will begin to reduce our contingent even before the end of the year, starting in September, in agreement with our allies," he said in an interview on state television RAI on Tuesday.

Italy has 3000 troops in Iraq, the fourth largest foreign contingent after the United States, Britain and South Korea.

The announcement comes close on the heels of the eventful release of kidnapped Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena in Iraq on 4 March.

The release turned bloody following firing by US troops under controversial circumstances on the Italian entourage transporting Sgrena to safety.

An Italian secret service agent Nicola Calipari was killed in the firing while Sgrena was injured.

Freed journalist Giuliana Sgrena said the US firing was intentional

The incident provoked widespread anger in Italy, with the governnment registering an official protest with Washington.

Berlusconi, considered Washington's closest ally in Europe, personally expressed anguish over the incident.

US President George Bush apologised for the shooting and instituted an inquiry.

But the resentment among Italians does not seem to have subsided.

And the other Islamist news agency, al Reuters:
Earlier Tuesday, Bulgaria's president said his country should withdraw its 450 troops from Iraq by the end of this year after a Bulgarian soldier was accidentally killed by U.S. forces. A final decision is expected by the end of the month....

The Dutch government, defying pressure from Washington, has announced it will pull its troops from Iraq by mid-April, while Poland is looking to withdraw its forces by the end of the year.

Just hours before Berlusconi announced Italy's partial withdrawal, an Italian solider died in Iraq during a target-shooting exercise. Some 21 Italian soldiers and five civilians have died in Iraq since the 2003 deployment.

Earlier Tuesday, Bulgaria's president said his country should withdraw its 450 troops from Iraq by the end of this year after a Bulgarian soldier was accidentally killed by U.S. forces. A final decision is expected by the end of the month.

The Dutch government, defying pressure from Washington, has announced it will pull its troops from Iraq by mid-April, while Poland is looking to withdraw its forces by the end of the year.

Just hours before Berlusconi announced Italy's partial withdrawal, an Italian solider died in Iraq during a target-shooting exercise. Some 21 Italian soldiers and five civilians have died in Iraq since the 2003 deployment.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:21 PM | Comments |

Al Qaeda Shoots Down US Plane in Iraq

UPDATE: This is an archive page. For the latest information on terrorist communiques and videos, please go to the MAIN PAGE here.

UPDATE 4/22/05: Islamic Army in Iraq shoots down civilian helicopter, murders American hostage. Information, images, and video here.

****EXCLUSIVE****MUST CITE JAWA REPORT****

The Jawa Report has obtained exclusive* footage of a plane shot down by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq. Shown below are several screenshots of the US warplane.

alqaedaplane1.jpg

Above: The US 'warplane' shot down by al Qaeda in Iraq. Apparently, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has been able to invent some sort of device that makes his jihadis enormous. He calls it the "growing-real-big-ray-gun-thingy". Experts at The Jawa Report using sophisticated and heretofore secret methods have deduced that the jihadis shown above are at least 600 feet tall.

Below: Notice the US Army's extensive use of tape in reparing the nose of the plane? Al Qaeda operatives are getting pretty sophisticated, what with shooting down this valuable asset and all.

alqaedaplane2.jpg

This actually isn't a joke. The last couple of days the online jihadis have been celebrating al Qaeda's victory in shooting down the infidel Zionist-Crusader's plane.

Of course, this isn't the first time this has happened. Last November, The Islamic Army in Iraq 'shot down' a similar plane.

Three words for the al Qaeda bastards: BRING IT ON, bitches.

*Hat tip to Northeast Intelligence Network where I first heard about this. You can get the video at Infovlad if you must see the entire thing.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:39 PM | Comments |

Jawa Report Celebrates One Million Visitors

UPDATE: 1 million mark passed!!!!!! (PS--sorry about trackback spam.....stupid MT keeps pinging and pinging and pinging...big apologies)

sitemeter1millionvisits.gif

sitemeterviews2mill.gif

Some time in the next couple of hours my Jawa will have been petted by at least 1 million visitors. It is done!!!!!! Damn, it feels good to be a gangsta!

Thanks all for the constant barage of referrals, positive feedback, and serious fun.

A few shout outs are in order.

First, the Commissar who gave me early encouragement and let me guest blog for him last year.

Next, a shout out to the OG pimptastik wicked gang. These are like-minded bloggers like the Llama Butchers, Bill at INDC, Jeff Goldstein, Iowahawk, Cranky Neocon, Six Meat Buffet, Ace, Allah, Prof. Chaos, BRD, Way Off Bass, Demosophia, and a bunch more that I just can't recall in my present caffeine-free state or who have given up the blogging gig. These are bloggers who were kind enough to throw me links early on, when I was getting like 100 hits a day. They also would show up on my site regular enough that it made a petite blogger feel like Macktastick Rusty Wicked.

Let me also thank the hundreds of other smaller bloggers who throw links my way on a very regular basis. You guys are awesome--totally awesome. As I've explained on numerous occasions the fact that I blog anonymously prohibits me commenting on your site. However, I do read just about every post that trackbacks to me. Also, if you have a post that needs a plugging, just e-mail me and I'll try to do it. I know how much it meant to me when Allah plugged an early post, so I try to return the favor as often as I can.

Last, let me tell you the six degrees of seperation for My Pet Jawa. My original inspiration for blogging came from Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs. After 9/11 a few buddies in grad school and I realized that we were pretty much on the same page. 'Boomhauer', 'Bill Dauterieve' and me, Dale Gribble Rusty Shackleford, sort of ganged up on our poor Chomskyite friend who was against the Afghanistan invasion. I think originally we started meeting in the alley for brews because we felt so out of place amongst our peers in grad school who were appalled at Shrimp-Chub-Hitler-Bush's response to 9/11. I don't know how Chomsky-lite started to hang out in the alley with us. It was probably because unlike most other disciples of the Maharaja-Chomsky, he had a sense of humor and he was into chicks. That--and his mutual love of dick and fart jokes.

Somehow or another I did an internet search trying to refute Chomsky's drivel and eventually found my way to LGF. Boomhauer and I then started a now defunct group blog. It got old quick, especially when sitemeter told us that like 10 people a day were reading it. Eventually I got a job here and Boomhauer got a job in another part of the country so we stopped blogging.

However, I didn't stop reading blogs. From LGF I started surfing his blogroll of anti-idiotarians. It was there that I found Iowahawk, Emperor Misha of the Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler, and the illustrious and semi-retired Allah. The Commissar had a blog-ad going over at Allah's at the time. I visited these sites as often as I could, which wasn't that often. It was my first year teaching at a university so a lot of prep time.

One day Bill Dauterieve calls me up and says, "Dude, I'm starting a blog again." This time he would put his real name up on the blog, his CV, and all that jazz. Me? Never one to be out done by Bill, I went over to blogspot to sign up once again. But what to name the blog? How about something really offensive? Yeah. Something that only South Park fans would get. Jawas. Yeah. How about like Emperor Misha's blog which is actually at 'nicedoggie.net'? Nice Jawa? Ouch--that certainly is offensive.

But wait, let's up it a notch. I kept thinking of that stupid TV production bumper "Sit Ubu sut, good dog." How about My Pet Jawa? (Mr. Burns) Excellent. Within an hour I had designed the initial layout of the site. I chose green because it is the sacred and holy color of the Religion of Peas. That, and I sort of ripped it off from Allah.

That was a little over a year ago. Last summer a couple of blog friends, namely Simon and BRD, convinced Pixy Misa to give me an mu.nu account. I changed the name from My Pet Jawa to the Jawa Report cause I wanted to hoodwink a few unnamed websites into believing that we were a legitimate source of news. (Nelson Munz) Ha-ha! The rest is, as they say, history.

I've had a lot of good times on the way. Plenty of links from big sites like Michelle Malkin, Little Green Footballs, Outside the Beltway, Wizbang, Vodka Pundit, and others--including a solitary Eschaton link and a single Instalanche.

Plenty of more from my devoted cadre of fellow-travellers and minions including:

Interested Participant, Hans Bricks, Team Hammer, Incite, Vince aut morire, Right Wing Nuthouse, Pirate's Cove, Digger's Realm, Jeff Quinton, Robert Spencer, Dean Esmay, Scott S., Mike King, John Donovan, Captain Ed, John Little, John Henke, Chad Evans, Rob of Say Anything, Spoons, Editors in Pajamas, Goldfalcon, Sundries Shack, Cox and Forkum, American Soldier, Jane Novack, Sworn Enemy, Julliette, Jeff at Beautiful Attrocities, Blog Tower, Sparse Matrix, Cal Tech Girl, Dummocrats, Flea, SondraK, Kate at Small Tasty Dead Animals, Mr. K, Zippo the Pirate, Scared Monkeys, Joe Gandelman, Myopic Zeal, Jack Lewis, Beth of MYVRWC, Maximum Leader, Chris Cross, Passionate America, Daniel Aronstein, Misplaced Keys, Hyscience, HispaLibertas, and a bajillion others.

I even have two blog children (as far as I know--wink, wink): Brian B. of Memento Moron and tee_bee!

So, while the rest of you are busy typing away on today's important events, I think I'll kick back, eat some meat, and take it easy. Thanks one and all. Biyatches!!!

UPDATE: Sorry about multiple trackback pings. Seriously, something went screwy with this thing.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:39 AM | Comments |

Comment Filter Run Amok?

by Demosophist

I keep getting submission errors to a comment I tried to make down below, because the filter would catch forbidden words even if they were simply embedded in other words. Thus, I couldn't use the word "grape" because it contained the word "rape," or couldn't use the word "socialism" (which is a bit of a handicap for a political scientist) because it contains the word "cialis."

I realize that comment spam is a problem, but frankly, I'd rather have comments by registration only than have to edit all the words in a comment for embedded taboos. Anyone can register with Typekey, and I've been using it on Roger L. Simon's comment section for a long time.

Comments? (Be careful what you say, though.)

By Demosophist at 04:55 AM | Comments |

March 14, 2005

NAWBLA vs. NAMBLA

Man, it looks like NAWBLA (North American Woman-Boy Love Association) is giving NAMBLA (North American Marlon Brando Look Alikes) a run for their money.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:18 PM | Comments |

California Court Rules that California Constitution is Unconstitutional

California Family Code 300: "Marriage is a personal relation arising out of a civil contract between a man and a woman, to which the consent of the parties capable of making that contract is necessary."

California Family Code 308.5 "Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California."

Er, I usually don't chime in on this kind of stuff but the judge really can't be serious, can he? :

In his 27-page decision, Kramer ... said the state's ban on same-sex marriage violates "the basic human right to marry the person of one's choice," and has no rational justification.
So are liberal justices about to revive Lochner Era jurisprudence or what? Hat tip: Ace

PS-I have this hot cousin.....

UPDATE: Meanwhile....as California violates the 'human rights' of homosexuals Saudi Arabia is busy beheading the gays. Saudis Behead Gay Couple

More....more...more....more...

Double PS-I have been accused of a lot of things, but never a social conservative....

UPDATE II: Judge rules traditional definition of 'idiot' not justified simply because such definition is traditional.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:01 PM | Comments |

The Surreal Life: Beirut

Okay, can some one please turn the postmodern dial to off in Lebanon now? (via Instapundit)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:48 PM | Comments |

Spring Break

Just a reminder....I'm on Spring Break so that's why posting is light.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:46 PM | Comments |

Abu Ali Pleads Not Guilty to Bush Assassination Plot

Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, the Virginian man linked to an al Qaeda plot to assassinate President Bush has plead 'not guilty' to all six counts in a Federal indictment.

Abu Ali was valedictorian at a Saudi funded Wahhabist high school in Alexandria, VA. The alleged terrorist also attended and taught at a mosque with ties to The Muslim Brotherhood, a group dedicated to the imposition of Islamic law and the return of the caliphate.

ABC News first runs this AP story by repeating the claim that Abu Ali was 'valedictorian' without noting that the high school is run by the Saudi government and which had a Wahhabi curriculem at the time Ali attended. Then they note:

Prosecutors allege that Abu Ali discussed numerous terrorist acts with other al-Qaida members, including a plan in which he would either shoot Bush or detonate a car bomb.

Other alleged discussions included a Sept. 11-style attack in which airplanes would be hijacked from the United Kingdom or Australia and flown to targets in the United States.

An FBI agent testified that Abu Ali admitted his guilt multiple times in interviews with Saudi and American authorities, but Abu Ali's lawyers say the government's evidence was obtained through torture and that they have seen the scars on Abu Ali's back from the beatings he endured while in Saudi custody.

Lawyers for Abu Ali filed a motion seeking medical and psychological evaluations that they contend will support his claim that he was tortured. U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce Lee said he would schedule a hearing as soon as Friday on the defense motion.

Abu Ali's lawyer Ashraf Nubani pressed for a May 4 trial, arguing the August trial date would violate federal speedy trial rules and said the government wanted the additional time to "concoct its case."

Prosecutors said they needed a later trial date because of the complexity of the case.

The counts against Abu Ali include two counts of conspiring conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, two counts of providing material support to terrorists, one count of contributing services to al-Qaida and one count of receiving funds and services from al-Qaida.

CNN notes:
Abu Ali, 23, stood silently in a green prison jump suit as his attorney entered the plea on his behalf and requested a trial by jury rather than by a judge.
Silent? He must be innocent! Many of Abu Ali's defenders note how soft-spoken the man is so he couldn't be a terrorist. As if there is some sort of relationship between how loud one is and his support for terrorism. I advise watching one of bin Laden's tapes for a clue. CNN then goes on to describe Shaker El Sayed as "a local Muslim leader":

Shaker El Sayed, a local Muslim leader and Abu Ali family friend, told reporters the case against Abu Ali was based on a confession to Saudi authorities he termed "laughable."

"They didn't have the evidence. They don't have the evidence. The fishing expedition continues," he said.

They fail to mention that El Sayed was a leader at a radical salafi mosque with ties to convicted terrorists. A radical mosque supported by the Muslim Brotherhood. A mosque that teaches women to put on the veil, as Ali's mother does.

This is a man that calls US action in Iraq 'terrorism' and in this essay attempts to discredit the 9/11 acts but supports terroristic attacks that he approves of:

First, Jihad as war ought to be conducted by the state that has the authority to wage war and declare war; but terrorism can be conducted by a state like that in the case of ..... United States against the innocent Iraqi people. This is a state imposed type of terrorism that is uncalled for....

War is justified to respond to aggression or to protect the weak and the meek as we mentioned or to fight against occupation to protect your homeland or to fight injustices committed by any. You have to fight injustices by all means using least force as needed first and if this doesn’t repel then you use extra force as needed.

Reuters also passes on this piece of misinformation in an attempt to paint Abu Ali in a positive light:
Abu Ali, then a student at a Saudi university, was arrested by Saudi officials on June 9, 2003, and held in Riyadh for 20 months until his return to Virginia last month after a federal grand jury indicted him.
As if what Abu Ali was studying and where he was studying is of no consequence. Ali was studying Islam in Mecca at the time of his arrest. He wasn't there in a peace studies program or preparing to take his GRE.

Other related stories:
Judge Holds Ahmed Omar Abu Ali Without Bail
Ahmed Omar Abu Ali Admitted Plot to Kill Bush, Carry Out Another 9-11
Alleged Terrorist is "Rosa Parks" of Muslim Community
Would Be Assassin's Jihadi Connections
The Muslim Brotherhood Connection to Bush Assassination Plot
More Revelations About "Terror High"
Terrorist Son of Saudi Embassy Worker Attended Saudi Run School
Man Charged in Presidential Assassinination Attempt Valedictorian of Radical Islamic School in Virginia Supported by Saudi Government

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:39 PM | Comments |

Giuliana Sgrena Admits Hostage Hoax

Sir George over at AIR has this from The Times (UK). Several important questions need answering:

But then the report mentioned a message from a group named the Jihad, saying that if Berlusconi did not withdraw Italian troops from Iraq by the next evening, she would be killed. “I believed it, even though my guards told me they didn’t want to kill me,” she says.
If Sgrena was in no danger, why was a ransom paid? Sgrena's hostage takers never threatened her life or safety in any of their public communiques.
One kidnapper told her they had a right to liberate their country. “You’re telling me,” she shot back. “I’ve always said that and I’m not an Iraqi.”
Liberate from whom? From the Italians? Italy has 3,000 troops on the ground in Iraq. If so, isn't encouraging violent opposition to Italian occupation treason?
“If you want to kill me, you might as well do it now . . . In any case it’s easier to kill a woman than to go and fight the Americans in the street.”
Read: Go kill Americans. Nice. I suppose some one is going to tell me about 'legitimate resistance' and yada yada. Of course, 'legitimate resistance' to Sgrena and likes means 'any one opposed to the US anywhere.'
She did suggest that she appeal to the Italian people to demonstrate in favour of a withdrawal of the country’s 3,000 troops. But when the guards filmed her, they told her the film wasn’t dramatic enough. She was a hostage, they insisted, she must be more convincing and ordered her to make a direct appeal to her boyfriend of 25 years, Pier Scolari. For the first time, Sgrena broke down in tears.
Wait...so the film was her idea? Confederate Yankee noticed the day her hostage video was released that she appeared to be directing the film. Now she admits it. Great. Next we'll learn the conversation at hostage headquarters went something like this.
Achmed: We demand 1 million lira for Sgrena's release! (pinky to mouth)

Sgrena: Er, 1 million lira is like $700 U.S. dollars.

Achmed: Oh? Really.....

Sgrena: Yeah........

Achmed: Ok....We demand 1 billion lira! (pinky finger to mouth)

Sgrena:....

Achmed: What? Too much??.....

Sgrena: Well.....er.....better. That's like $700,000 U.S.

Achmed:.....

Sgrena:......

Achmed:.......So?

Sgrena: Wouldn't you be able to fund more Iraqi 'Minutemen' to kill the Zionist-Crusader forces with like a trillion lira......???

Achmed:.......

Sgrena:...............

Achmed:You know we invented the zero, don't you?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:40 AM | Comments |

Nuke Bomb Plans Posted by American at Terrorist Website (Updated)

Via Aaron at Internet Haganah the alarming news that plans for a do-it-yourself nuclear bomb have been posted at an Islamic forum. What is even more alarming is that the person posting the H-bomb plans is an American of Palestinian descent and posts the plans from a public library in the U.S. I suppose that the ACLU will cry bloody-murder should the FBI check the activity logs of whichever library this turns out to have come from.

Here is some of the message that he posts:

the nature of my job allowes me to read some confidantial studies presented by retired fbi ....dhs ..cia agents...etc...and i want to participate in bringiing the usa nazi zionist goverment down
He then drones on and on about how the jihadis need to watch out, the Americans are tracking them, etc.

The story was reported in the Arab News, the Saudi publication. That story, whether in error or because the Saudis believed this was too hot for public consumption, said the message was about how to build a 'dirty bomb'. It was not, it was how to build an atomic weapon.

Aside from the nuke, though, they seem to get it right. The same American poster also instructs his fellow jihadis on the use of other WMD:

The member, whose expertise veers toward chemical warfare, shows a marked emphasis in making gas bombs. He introduces the subject by naming the different gases used for these purposes, and follows it up with their reaction with the elements, effects and their impact, before concluding by telling all where to buy them....

At the end of his session, the writer, who asked his followers to go for jihad, received a comment from another writer asking him to give more details as they needed it to start making those gases in Iraq. “We need simple quick ways to make them, for us to quickly fight the Americans and the great traitor Allawi,” said the comment.

Some one in the Pentagon better be reading this and remind the troops to keep those chemical suits handy.

Oh, and I would be remiss if I didn't mention that the poster left his e-mail address-- let_us_reason2005@yahoo.com

UPDATE: Wow, see why the blogosphere is so great. Checking out the comments and all the various links it turns out that the actual H-Bomb plans are a hoax. *Sigh of relief*

Even so, two questions remain:

a) Are the chemical weapon instructions also a hoax? The Arab News version seems to indicate that the majority of this person's posts are about the use of chemical weapons.

b) Did the poster believe the H-bomb instructions were real? Some are accusing us of jumping the gun on this. The atomic weapon instructions were only part of a long series of posts by an individual who claims he wishes to help the jihadis.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:40 AM | Comments |

Blog Sabbath Caption Contest Winners

Here are the winners to yesterday's caption contest. Winners are chosen arbitrarily by me.

1) Eric at Vince Aut Morire:

Hugo: You're more anti-American!
Jacques: Non! You're more anti-American!
Hugo: I insist! You're more anti-American!
Jacques: Non! You are!
Hugo: No! You are!
Jacques: I surrender!

2) Ricardo Verde:

.....expressing mutual condolence on the loss of Moe.

3) Frank Villon of You've Been Told:

Jacques: Embrasse-moi, mon petit étalon hispanique!
Hugo: Besame mucho, cabron francés!

Special Mention to Brian Blazevic of New Eagle for gratuitous use of the term 'hot karl'

Cowardice and Petulance embrace after agreeing to keep Venezuelan oil away from America - and a "hot karl" just off camera.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:24 AM | Comments |

Morning Linkfest

Here are a few good morning reads. I'm on Spring Break so posting will be light.

Giuliana Sgrena 'demanding' answers from US government.

Good news from Iraq--civilians helping the military.

US rendition program a success.

Chris Short is at Sea World and has a touching story of a tribute to our troops.

The Carnivorous Conservative has the story of Iwo Jima. Very cool. My grandfather was a Marine killed in the Marianas campaign and is buried in the Punch Bowl.

Hundred Percenter interviews John Hawkins--something of a role reversal.

Decison '08 now laying odds on Hilary Clinton's run.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:55 AM | Comments |

March 12, 2005

Blog Sabbath Caption Contest

Caption this photo of Jacques Chirac hugging Hugo Chavez. The winner gets this shiny quarter and a free plug.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 06:16 PM | Comments |

Sgrena's House of Cards Begins to Fall

Go to Google News. Do a quick search for 'Sgrena'. Notice all the headlines questioning Sgrena's veracity? Now breathe big sigh of relief.

Oh, and check this out via Flopping Aces. Italy is telling Sgrena shut shut her pie-hole. Do you think it was the constant changing of the shooting story or the tales of the US using nuclear weapons in Iraq that they are concerned with? News.com.au:

ITALY'S justice minister has urged former hostage Giuliana Sgrena to stop making "careless" accusations after being shot by US forces in Baghdad, saying she had already caused enough grief.

Ms Sgrena has repeatedly suggested US soldiers shot her on purpose and said today she had little faith in a joint investigation by Italy and the United States into the "friendly fire" incident.
"She has created enormous problems for the Government and also caused grief that perhaps was better avoided," Justice Minister Roberto Castelli told reporters in Bologna.

Bolagna? Yeah, that about sums it up.

Moonbat Alert Update: uruknet has written some pretty nasty things about Charles Johnson and myself in the past. Check out their new theory on what really happpened:

Adding it all up, it appears that John Negroponte became aware that Giuliana Sgrena was leaving Iraq with dangerous information about what American forces had been up to in committing war crimes in Falluja. Negroponte's experience in Honduras (12) gave him a certain expertise in covering up human rights violations, and he ordered his own personal bodyguard to assassinate Sgrena in a staged incident which was supposed to look like the usual problem at an American checkpoint in Iraq.
Man, that's classic. You know, there's funny and then there's funny. This is funny.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:16 PM | Comments |

Spring Break Blogging

It's Spring Break around here. I'm going to try to do some academic work over the break. Contrary to popular belief, the Middle East is not my field of expertise.

As I explained on the radio the other night, I put a pretty big wall of seperation between my professional writing and my blog writing. To be honest, I get kind of annoyed at some bloggers who wear their academic credentials on their coat sleeves. As if the type of work that we publish on our blogs are somehow related to our academic disciplines. They are not.

My blog writing has gotten more intense as of late, but I've allowed my professional research and writing fall off quite a bit.

I'll be posting, but posting will be much lighter than usual.

UPDATE: In lieu of reading posts, why not offer some good vibes and a prayer for Brian B. Looks like he's going to have to be the sole bread winner for awhile. Welcome to the club, man. I've been supporting Mrs. Shackleford for going on 4 years now. It aint easy, but it's worth it.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:55 PM | Comments |

March 11, 2005

Are the Italians on to Sgrena?

Interesting development, Sgrena being questioned by police AGAIN. Hmmmmm, could it be all the inconsistencies in her tale? AP:

Meanwhile, Italian prosecutors conducting their own investigation on Thursday questioned former Italian hostage Giuliana Sgrena again in the Rome military hospital where she is recovering from a shoulder wound sustained in the March 4 shooting.
Ok, I have a big date with Mrs. Shackleford tonight. Ciao.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:13 PM | Comments |

Australian Newspaper Plagiarizes Jawa Report

I'm not complaing, though. As long as the word on Sgrena gets out I'm happy. Need I remind new readers that I've been bitch-slapping Sgrena since the day she was taken hostage? Check it out.

Oh and speaking of plagiarism: calling Ward Churchill!!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:51 PM | Comments |

Jeff Gannon Was Real Journalist

I'm tired of disproving the lies of a lady who claims we nuked Iraq (you know, Giulana Sgrena). I'm thinking that maybe what this blog needs is some more Jeff Gannon? Confederate Yankee has more. I apologize in advance over his lack of nude pictures.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:51 PM | Comments |

NPR Misses Sgrena's Big Lie

NPR ran a six minute segment of an interview with Giuliana Sgrena yesterday. Sylvia Poggioli, in typical NPR fashion, let's Sgrena's inconsistencies pass. Here is a transcript of the lie I caught Sgrena telling:

(Poggioli's voice) She [Sgrena] denies the U.S. military account that the Italians' car was speeding, that soldiers made hand signals, and flashed warning lights to get it to stop.

(Sgrena's voice then a translation) Suddenly we were riddled by gunfire, but the lights went on only after we had been hit.

Had Poggioli been doing her job and checked Sgrena's story with one of the versions of her story she told in the past, she would have immediately caught the lie. Here is what Sgrena says in her own Il Manifesto article:
The Americans shone a flashlight at the car and then fired
Which is it Sgrena? The US says they attempted to slow the vehicle down by shining a warning light at the car. Sgrena originally admits that this is the case, but then changes her mind later. Why? Because the tale she tells NPR is much more damning than the orignial tale she told which on this one point meshes with the US version.
According to the division, the patrol attempted to warn the driver to stop by hand and arm signals, flashing white lights, and firing warning shots in front of the car."
We've already accounted for her lies here and here and how they simply do not mesh with the the physical evidence. But many of her inconsistencies can be accounted for as mere differences of perception. This one, though, is an out-and-out lie.

Can some one please remind me why US taxpayers are paying Sylvia Poggioli's salary if she believes her job is to smear the good name of US soldiers and repeat the lies and inconsistencies of a woman actively working for their deaths?

UPDATE: Captain Ed notices more evolution in the Sgrena story. With each day, her story cahnges and gets worse and worse.

UPDATE II: Right-wing Nuthouse on the same page. OCC chronicle speculates on what I have been saying since the beginning.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:18 AM | Comments |

Gone Fishing

I need a break. Going fishing.

UPDATE: Back early. Got skunked. Water level was much lower than I expected and wind was way up. Nice to get out, though.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:12 AM | Comments |

Phillipines Paying Ransom for Hostage (Again): Roy Hallums-Libya Connection

INQ7 News reprints this Philippine Daily Inquirer
story:

AFTER a long silence, the captors of Roberto Tarongoy have released a video of their Filipino hostage which was aired by the Al-Jazeera Arab television network on Tuesday, the Department of Foreign Affairs said yesterday.

Foreign Secretary Alberto Romulo, however, would not comment on reports that the video showed Tarongoy in an orange outfit -- a sign that he is nearing execution -- and that it conveyed the two conditions given for his release which the Philippines should meet in four days.

The hostage takers have reportedly demanded that the government recall all Filipino workers in Iraq and stop whatever cooperation it is giving to the United States military in Iraq.

Today the Philippines admits to paying ransom. Notice the Libya reference which is important. Daily Tribune (Philippines):
Once more, the Arroyo government is claimed to be negotiating the release of hostaged Filipino accountant Roberto Tarongoy by his captors, with a counter offer of $6 million, or $4 million short of the earlier $10 million demanded by the Iraqi rebels, a reliable source from the Department of Foreign Affairs told the Tribune yesterday.

It was not known whether President Arroyo will again be tapping Libya for the ransom money, although the source pointed out it is likely for her to seek the help of Saudi Arabia in raising the funds, as Mrs. Arroyo was reported to have done the Saudi government a “big favor” by ordering the release from immigration detention of suspected al-Qaeda financier, Mohammed al-Sughayir...

The Philippine government also yesterday claimed to have identified the kidnappers of the Filipino accountant, but insisted it has only been negotiating with them through intermediaries.

Roberto Tarongoy was abducted along with his colleauge the American Roy Hallums on Nov. 1st of last year.

Digger reports that on "July 2004 the Philippine government reportedly paid $6 million for hostage Angelo De La Cruz. Of the $6 million for De La Cruz, $5 million is said to have come from Libya". This becomes very important in light of the statement made by Roy Hallums in a video released on January 25th (I transcripted the video here):

I am asking for the help of Arab rulers, especially President Muammar Gaddafi because he's known for helping those who are suffering.
The fact that Gaddafi has helped pay ransom in the past makes Roy Hallums' statement more clear.

So the Philippine government a) has identified the kidnappers b) is paying ransom.

a) If the kindappers have been identified then the Fillipino government has a moral obligation to turn that information over to the coalition forces. Coalition forces have freed a number of hostages in the past.

b) By paying ransom the Fillipino government funds terrorist activities which will lead to more death and destruction in Iraq and only encourage more hostage taking.

In related news friend of The Jawa Report and ex-wife of Roy, Susan Hallums was reminding the President of the plight of her husband and of American hostage Thomas Hamill. Susan is said to be in contact with both the Hamill family and the wife of Roberto Tarongoy. In response, the White House issued this statement:

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Hallums family. We are aware of the situation. Any time there is an American held hostage, it is a high priority for the U.S. government.

Hat tip to Michelle Malkin. Digger has a lot more as well.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:20 AM | Comments |

Spain Surrendered to Terrorists One Year Ago Today

One year ago today an al Qaeda cell calling itself "the death smoke squad" bombed four seperate trains in Madrid, Spain, killing 191 and wounding over a thousand more. Al Qaeda had demanded Spain withdraw its troops from Iraq. As a response to the bombing, Spain did just that.

As a result of Spanish withdrawal from Iraq the terrorists began a new round of threats, hostage taking, and murder. Whether or not the Spanish people intended to cave to terrorists is irrelevant for the likes of bin Laden and Zarqawi. They perceived Spain had given in to their demands therefore their strategy had worked.

Let's not forget that the goal of Islamic "terrorists" is not to "terrorize". The goal of Islamic terrorists is to restore the Caliphate to its maximum borders, which includes most of Spain.

Last night Muslim clerics in Spain issued a fatwa against Osama bin Laden, the founder of al-Qaeda, for inspiring the Madrid massacre. Let us not forget that many of these same clerics hope for the same goal as bin Laden--an Islamic state ruling Spain. They may disagree with the means of achieving the ends, but the ends would be a fascist state worse than anything Franco ever imposed.

Spain, we feel for your loss. Spain, we also condemn you for adding fuel to the fire of global jihad.

Blog reaction:

Michelle Malkin

Barcepundit who lists the victims.

Laurence Simon is on the same page as I am.

Terrorism Unveiled.

Ranting Roofs has an excellent summation.

Vince Aut Morire is always on the same page. But what I want to know is where is MY fatwa!?!

Six Meat Buffet calls Spain "Little France"--ha!!

ITB, as usual, has a good take.

Shape of Days has a pretty good post.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:31 AM | Comments |

March 10, 2005

Why We Shot at Sgrena and Killed Nicola Calipari

Major K. reports an incident in Iraq, where he is stationed:

A short distance from our FOB, A US convoy was driving down the road. As they headed to their destination a civilian vehicle pulled on from a side alley and attempted to get into the convoy....Unable to deter the vehicle from approaching the US convoy or make it pull over, the IP’s [Iraqi Police] fired at the engine of the encroaching vehicle. At this point, the driver detonated the IED inside his vehicle. Yes, this was a classic VBIED.

This suicide bomber killed himself and the four IP’s in the vehicle holding him at bay. The device was so powerful that the bomber’s vehicle was literally obliterated. The engine block was thrown over 25 meters. The IP’s vehicle was nothing but a burned out shell. All four IP’s inside perished in the blast, but not a scratch was inflicted on the vehicles or personnel of the US convoy.

Hat tip to John Donovan who reminds us that it's not just Americans who are dying for Iraqis, but Iraqis dying for Americans.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:29 PM | Comments |

Muslims Fired for Praying on the Job at Dell

I sympathize with these dudes, I really do, but the problem with Islamic prayers are that they are set by the solar time of day in Mecca (ie, sunrise and sunset rather than a certain time of day). What do you expect Dell to do, shut down the entire assembly line because a handful of workers can't keep the same schedule?

The Tennessean:

"They told us that we cannot pray at sunset,'' Nuur said. ''They told us that we would have to wait for our break.''
Oh no! Discrimination!! Bigotry!!! Bias!!!! Nazis!!!!

Oh, wait:

''Dell values diversity in all areas, and that includes religious beliefs,'' Dell spokesman Mark Drury said. ''The company's practice is to accommodate religious beliefs, so long as the accommodations are reasonable, don't disrupt business operations and are consistent with our policies on operating a respectful workplace.

''Employees are allowed time off with pay to pray. We have traffic-free areas for them to use for prayer.''

Sometimes those religious needs conflict with the business, though.

''When granting time off during a shift on a manufacturing line would be disruptive,'' Drury said, ''we have worked out reasonable accommodations, such as a tag-out procedure when employees can leave the line to pray and return, allowing the next employee time to leave the line to pray.''

For some odd reason, when I tell my Dean I need time off to pray, I get this sort of look...you know?

hat tip: Kevin Aylward

UPDATE: Meanwhile IKEA plays the dhimmi to the tea. This article describes how IKEA only shows men in its instuction brochures (IKEA sells unassembled furniture) so as not to offend the sensibilities of Muslims who might be offended at the thought of *shock* a woman putting together furniture. (hat tip Opinionbug)

Paranthetically, I was once in Sweden on a holiday and visited IKEA in its native land. My take? Swedish women are way overrated.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:15 PM | Comments |

Egypt's Baghdad Bob

Iraqi Information Minister Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf, better known as "Baghdad Bob", is well-known for his quips about how the US was losing the war. My favorite was "There are no American infidels in Baghdad. Never!" even as tanks could be seen across the Euphrates river on live television.

Today, Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit joins the ranks of reality deniars such as Baghdad Bob for his denial that American foreign policy is responsible for the sea-change in Iraq. The WaPo artcle is here. Read it, you'll get a good laugh.

My favorite line: ""I think Egypt is a lighthouse for the Middle East." Classic.

The Commissar has more.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:04 PM | Comments |

The Dan Rather Farewell Post

Dan who?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:49 PM | Comments |

Suicide Bomber Kills 36 at Shiite Mosque

A homice bomber blew himself up today at a Shiite Mosque in the insurgency stronghold of Mosul. The blast is reported by the AP to have killed at least 36 people and injured 25 others.

Large parts of Mosul are effectively controlled by insurgents. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Mesopotamia (Iraq) is also said to have a stronghold there along with the Kurdish Salafist group Ansar al-Sunnah. Yesterday, Zarqawi claimed personal responsibility in the Sadeer hotel bombing because "there were a large number of Jews" in the buildiing.

AP:

A suicide bomber blew himself up at a Shiite mosque during a funeral Thursday in the northern city of Mosul, killing at least 36 people and injuring 25, witnesses and hospital officials said.

U.S. troops cordoned off the area in the northeastern Tameem neighborhood near the mosque. Civilian vehicles helped ambulance crews in ferrying casualties to hospitals.

At least 36 people were killed, said Dr. Saher Maher, speaking from a hospital in the city.

The explosion took place during a funeral in the courtyard of a mosque that was still under construction.

''As we were inside the mosque, we saw a ball of fire and heard a huge explosion,'' said Tahir Abdullah Sultan. ''After that, blood and pieces of flesh were scattered around the place.''

Rows of overturned white plastic chairs were stained in blood. Body parts, believed to be of the bomber, were spread around the area, and the smell of gunpowder filled the yard. Windows of nearby cars were shattered.

''After the cloud of smoke and dust dispersed, we saw the scattered bodies of the fallen and smelled gunpowder,'' said Adnan al-Bayati, another witness.

The mosque is located in a poor Mosul neighborhood and surrounded by many homes.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:27 AM | Comments |

Church Report: Torture and Abuse Not U.S. Policy, Clears Top Officials

Navy Vice Admiral Albert Church will testify before Congress today that while prisoner abuse and torture has occured at the hands of US forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, the abuse was not due to US policy, was not wide spread, and not systematic--multiple sources are reporting this morning. The Church report also outlines a number of new recommendations aimed at further reducing prisoner abuse.

The New York Times (subscription) sums up the findings:

Admiral Church's report faults senior American officials for failing to establish clear interrogation policies for Iraq and Afghanistan, leaving commanders there to develop some practices that were unauthorized, according to the report summary. But the inquiry found that Pentagon officials and senior commanders were not directly responsible for the detainee abuses, and that there was no policy that approved mistreatment of detainees at prisons in Afghanistan, Iraq and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
Kevin McCullough, who has much more, summarizes the Church reports findings:
1. There was no policy that condoned torture.

2. There was no policy that encouraged abuse.

3. There was a lot of inconsistency across interrogation techniques. Many of those techniques were developed in the combat theater and migrated to other areas.

4. There was a general lack of military command guidance in dealing with the CIA. [Church] found 30 ghost detainees. One such detainee was in that status for 45 days.

5. There were missed interrogation opportunities in part because the military failed to take account of lessons from prior conflicts
.
6. There was no guidance to CENTCOM or by CENTCOM on interrogations.

While the general thrust of the Church report is that US policy did not directly lead to the torture and abuse of detainees, the international media has jumped on the report, following the lead of the New York Times, focusing instead on tales of the abuse that did take place. The International Herald Tribune, based in France, runs with the headline "Abuse of Afghan villagers by GIs is reported to Congress" and cites the New York Times as its source.

It is our opinion that the specific tales of abuse should have remained classified and the report should only contain a general accounting of abuses. The inevetable outcome of the public airing of specific abuses will be to bolster the claims of terrorists that the fight against Coalition forces in Iraq is a just one. Members of Congress could have been briefed on the classified portions of the document in private.

The goal of the report, it should be remembered, is to find ways to prevent abuse in the future. The Times claims that:

Three senior defense officials said Wednesday that the new procedures clarified the prohibition against the use of muzzled dogs in interrogations, gave specific guidance to field units as to how long they could hold prisoners before releasing them or sending them to higher headquarters for detention, and made clear command responsibilities for detainee operations.
Vice Admiral Church and other Pentagon officials are scheduled to testify before Congress today.

UPDATE: Interesting note from Wired:

A 21-page unclassified summary of the report was to be released at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. The full 368-page report is classified.
Is the story run by the New York Times, and sure to be the focus of the foreign and jihadi press, about abuses part of the classified report? If so, who leaked it?

UPDATE: This in from American Forces Press Service:

The latest review of detention operations has found “no policy that considered or condoned torture,” said the officer appointed to lead the investigation.
Vice Adm. Albert T. Church III, director of the Navy staff, also said he found no policy “that condoned or in any way encouraged abuse of detainees.”

The admiral said the investigation did find inconsistencies with regard to the development, promulgation and dissemination of interrogation techniques. These techniques “migrated” from Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to Afghanistan, to Iraq, he said.

“As with previous investigations, we found there was a lack of guidance for the interrogators dealing with other government activities, specifically the (CIA),” he said.

Church said he did receive cooperation from the CIA and was able to determine that there were 30 so-called “ghost detainees” – one of whom was jailed for 45 days before being added to the prison population.

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld assigned Church to conduct the investigation on May 25, 2004. The admiral was to identify and report on all interrogation techniques “considered, authorized, employed or prohibited” in the global war on terror. He was to look at to what extent interrogation techniques migrated from one command or operation to another. He also was to investigate DoD support or participation in interrogations conducted by other governmental agencies.

Church and his investigators traced how all the interrogation techniques were developed, and how they were considered inside the Pentagon. Church said he and his staff were interested in responses to “who requested what, what the responses were, how that was promulgated, how techniques migrated, (and) how they were actually employed in the field by the interrogators.”

To this end, Church and his investigators conducted more than 800 interviews and combed through thousands of pages of documents. They also built on investigations conducted previously and worked closely with the Schlesinger Panel – an independent group that examined detainee operations.

Church also investigated the 70 authenticated cases of detainee abuse. He said these cases resulted in six deaths, 26 cases of serious abuse and 38 minor cases. The admiral said only about a third were related to interrogation. This included asking for information at the point of capture.

He said there was no pattern to the cases. “They were in (Guantanamo), Afghanistan, Iraq and across the spectrum – active, Reserve, Guard, Navy, Marine and Army. So there was no pattern in these abuses, and none of them related to any of the interrogation techniques that were authorized,” he said.

Church cited a number of “missed opportunities.” He said the services should have incorporated the detainee affairs lessons from past conflicts as it was readying for war. He also said DoD provided no specific guidance to U.S. Central Command on detainee interrogation, nor did CENTCOM provide guidance to the theaters regarding interrogation policy or interrogation techniques.

Senior defense and military officials said they will comb the Church report for more recommendations to make detainee operations better, without choking off the vital flow of human intelligence necessary to fight the global war on terrorism.

The Army is tracking more than 400 different recommendations out of the 11 major investigations, inspections and reports that have been completed prior to the Church report. More than 40 percent of the recommendations have been completed and put in place.

Since the pictures of detainee abuse appeared almost a year ago, reports of detainee abuse have declined by 80 percent. The Army has worked to clarify policy, especially the roles of military intelligence interrogators and military police, senior military officials said.

The service has implemented major changes in training. The Army has taken the recommendations to heart and instituted changes from initial-entry training to the highest level of military education. In addition, MPs receive an additional 55-hour course on detainee operations before deploying.

An example of how seriously the service took the incidents of detainee abuse is the change in the prisoner-to-guard ratio. In April 2004 it was 75 detainees to one guard. Now the ratio is 8-to-1, and the Army is creating new units so the imbalance never occurs again, military officials said.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:07 AM | Comments |

Zarqawi Claims Sadeer Hotel Bombing Attempt to Kill Jews

In several communications, yesterday, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Mesopotamia (Iraq) claimed responsibility for the Sadeer hotel bombing. In a statement allegedly written by Zarqawi himself, al Qaeda claims that the hotel was bombed because "there were a large number of Jews and Israeli Mossad agents in the hotel." (full translation here)

On the progress front, though, the Iraqi Interim government now claims that 18 of 20 top leaders of the terrorist network have been killed or captured.

The two leaders that remain at large are Zarqawi and Abu Talha. Evan Kohlmann, of the Counterterrorism Blog, has a translation of the press release here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:04 AM | Comments |

Sgrena Finds Oswald's 'Magic Bullet'

In another contradiction from earlier stories, Giuliana Sgrena's boyfriend now claims she "collected handfuls of bullets on the seats." In related news, eye-witnesses to the Sgrena shooting now are reporting that they heard shots fired from "the grassy noll". Developing....... (multiple shout-outs to the many people who tipped me on this)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:45 AM | Comments |

March 09, 2005

On the 100 mph question

Isn't it more likely that the military official who told ABC that Sgrena's car "was traveling in excess of 100 mph" is a little confused about the metric system and meant to say "100 kph"? That would be about 60 mph, still too fast for a bombed out Baghdad road yet consistent with Sgrena's (or at least, one of her contradictory) version and the US version of the story.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:05 PM | Comments |

Calling All Hackers

Let me just put in a quick plug for Hagganah Internet. What we do here is make fun of terrorists and expose their evil agenda. What he does there is he takes those bitches out!

What many in America do not understand is that terrorists are linked together with a common ideology. That ideology is not 'terrorism'. 'Terrorism' is a means to an end, the end, however is just as frightening as the means. The ends are the global caliphate under sharia law as first envisioned by The Muslim Brotherhood at the fall of the Turkish empire.

I condemn the IRA, but I don't consider them a major threat to Western Civilization. On the other hand, The Muslim Brotherhood has (at least publicly) renounced violence yet I consider them a far more dangerous organization.

The jihadi networks are bound together through internet sites and discussion boards where they give each other support, instruction, and even coordinate attacks.

The FBI and CIA still operate in pre-9/11 mode when it comes to these terrorist web sites. That is, the operators of these websites are largely ignored or when attention is paid to them it is in the guise of a criminal indictment. If 9/11 taught us anything, it is that we cannot treat the jihadi terrorists as criminals. This is war, and pro-active cyber-warfare must be part of that strategy.

Internet Hagganah is committed to exposing the terrorists by revealing the web sites they use and hosting companies which allow them to operate. Many might be surprised to learn that the majority of jihadi websites are hosted on American or European servers.

If you have, er, special skills that might help in taking down some of these websites you might want to pay Aaron's Internet Hagganah a visit.

In the past few weeks a number of jihadi sites have been, er, forced to find other hosts. For instance, the Aaryan Nation website which openly encourages the jihad against America has recently been *cough* shut down.

If you don't have these special skills, another strategy is to contact the webhost and pressure them to remove the terrorists' content. Internet Hagganah on an almost daily basis reveals who those webhosts are. For instance, a company in Denmark has been hosting a website which raises money under the guise of an 'Islamic Charity' but which openly boasts in Arabic about how those funds are used in Iraq to fuel the insurgency.

Last bleg--if you want to help make Internet Hagganah a semi-regular visit.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:56 PM | Comments |

Wow....

.....man, I miss living in the Mountain West. This is why.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:20 PM | Comments |

We Got Another Zarqawi Aide, Syria Implicated

Kuna:

Iraqi security forces arrested a leader of one of Musaab Al-Zarqawi's terrorist cells in Baquba, northeast of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad on Wednesday.

An Iraqi police source told reporters that soldiers of the Iraqi Army captured Taifor Abdulsattar Malallah one of the "princes" of Musaeb Al-Zaraqi's terrorist group in Baquba.

The source who preferred anonymity said the army raid resulted in the capture of Bakir Al-Hiraibi, one of Malallah's close aides, and five others of his cell members wanted by the Iraqi government. The captured have "confessed to executing many criminal attacks against Iraqi police and National Guard in addition to planting explosive devices," he said.

Interrogations have revealed that all those arrested have relations with a country neighboring Iraq, he said.

Hmmm, I wonder which country that could possibly be????? Thanks to Reliapundit for e-mailing this to me.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:20 PM | Comments |

Giuliana Sgrena's Lies, Inconsistencies, and Treason

Giuliana Sgrena's version of events leading up to the death of Italian secret service agent Nicola Calipari are inconsistent and just don't add up when compared with the physical evidence. But Sgrena's crimes are far worse than the minor infraction of being a propagandist with a political axe to grind against the US. Giuliana Sgrena is a traitor to the Italian people. While Italian troops were in a shooting war with Iraqi insurgents, Sgrena worked to bolster the spirits of those attempting to kill her fellow citizens. An Italian Tokyo Rose, Sgena used the tools of her trade to undermine the morale of Italian soldiers and bolster the spirits of the terrorist forces they were fighting.

Was Giuliana Sgrena a neutral observer reporting both sides of the conflict or was she actively working to undermine Italian efforts in Iraq?

Here is Sgrena in her own words on the plane taking her to Iraq courtesy of a translation by Zacht EI:

Be careful not to get kidnapped,' I told the female Italian journalist sitting next to me in the small plane that was headed for Baghdad. 'Oh no,' she said. 'That won't happen. We are siding with the oppressed Iraqi people. No Iraqi would kidnap us....

'The Americans are the biggest enemies of mankind,' the three women behind me had told me, for Sgrena travelled to Iraq with two Italian colleagues who hated the Americans as well...

'You don't understand the situation. We are anti-imperialists, anti-capitalists, communists,' they said. The Iraqis only kidnap American sympathizers, the enemies of the Americans have nothing to fear.

Sgrena admits being an enemy of America. How can one be the enemy of America in a war in which Italy and America are on the same side and yet remain loyal to Italy?

Wouldn't it have been treasonous for an American to work for the German conquest of Russia during WWII? Would such a traitor be able to claim, "Hey, I'm not against America's war with Germany. I just hope Germany defeats Russia."

Further, Sgrena accuses her countries allied nation of war-crimes. If you read the insurgents version of why they fight against us it is because they believe the kind of propaganda produced by Sgrena and her left-wing media allies. The insurgents believe the coalition is intentionally killing civilians, raping Muslim women, torturing children, using napalm, and even nuclear weapons.

If these things were true, then the people of Iraq would have a moral obligation to fight. Of course, bad things to happen in war--but nothing like what is described by Sgrena and her jihadi allies comes close to the reality of Iraq on the ground.

Here is Sgrena describing the US assault on Fallujah:

The massacre in Falluja continues .
By massacre, Sgrena means the US invasion of the city, not the massacre of innocent civilians by terrorists. However, what were Sgrena's friends doing in Fallujah before the US Marines arrived?

Here is an image taken by US Marines as part of a slide-show documenting war-crimes in Fallujah.

Sgrena continues to repeat her allegations about war-crimes in Fallujah here:

«We buried them, but we could not identify them because they were charred from the napalm bombs used by the Americans». People from Saqlawiya village, near Falluja, told al Jazeera television, based in Qatar, that they helped bury 73 bodies of women and children completely charred, all in the same grave. The sad story of common graves, which started at Saddam’s times, is not yet finished. Nobody could confirm if napalm bombs have been used in Falluja, but other bodies found last year after the fierce battle at Baghdad airport were also completely charred and some thought of nuclear bombs.
Wait, Sgrena knowingly repeats unverifiable accusations that the US has used napalm on civilians and even nuclear weapons? Those types of accusations are not just lousy or even bias reporting, they are calls to arms.

This type of propaganda is exactly the type that Goebbels would produce to rouse the German people to war. Czech 'attrocities' against Germans in the Sudetenland or Polish 'massacres' against Deutchvolk in Danzig.

The nature of her journalism is such that those fighting her Italian compatriots must have been pleased. In fact, they were. From al Jazeera:

"She has very good contacts in Baghdad, including with the ulamas" [meaning the clerical leaders of the resistance]
Another of Sgrena's rallying calls for the resistance:
Fallujah is dying under the criminally indifferent gaze not only of the United States, but also of the Iraqi government, or at least the interim Prime Minister Allawi...
If Italy is in Iraq to support America's criminal indifference, then doesn't that make Italy an accomplice in these criminal acts? The innevetable conclusion to Sgrena's chain of thought is that Italy is culpable in war-crimes and any insurgent is justified in taking up arms against Italian troops.

In this paragraph Sgrena portrays those fighting in Fallujah as simple resistance fighters. It is the US that is portrayed as a terrorist force. More than that, the so-called resistance is cast in a romantically heroic light:

A fire rain crashed over Falluja as soon as the curfew entered into force, at 6 p.m., sunset, after the Iftar breaks the Ramadan fast. At the same time, from the minaret of the mosque, the voice of the Imam tried to rise over the noise of the bombs to incite the mujahidin to the battle, which for Falluja will surely be the hardest since the beginning of the invasion....

The excuse of terrorists [meaning the US Marines] is the pretext to destroy the symbol of resistance [meaning Fallujah].

But who, really, were these brave 'resistance fighters' as Giuliana Sgrena would have you believe they were? If the image above was not enough, here are some accounts of what was found in that city, Sgrena's 'symbol of resistance'.

USA Today:

Iraqi troops have found "hostage slaughterhouses" in Fallujah where foreign captives were held and killed, the commander of Iraqi forces in the city said Wednesday.

Troops found CDs and documents of people taken captive in houses in the northern part of Fallujah, Maj. Gen. Abdul Qader Mohammed Jassem Mohan told reporters.

From SMH Australia:
US troops have found three Iraqi hostages in the basement of houses in Falluja, handcuffed and starving, a marine officer said.

"We have found Iraqi hostages in basements, handcuffed by their hands and ankles, starving, thirsty and tortured," said marine Major P.J. Batty, adding that three hostages in total had been found.

But all of this could be attributed to the fact that Abu Musab al Zarqawi, the head of what was then known as Tawhid and Jihad but now known as al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, was based in Fallujah. But Sgrena's friends in Fallujah's Shura Council included Omar Hadid. From the Boston Globe:
Hadid, an electrician who lived with his mother....Of the two, Hadid, thought to be in his early 30s, appears to have been the more influential, even though al-Janabi, in his 50s, headed the Mujahedeen Shura Council, which set up Islamic courts that meted out Islamic punishments, executed suspected spies and enforced a strict Islamic lifestyle.
The Shura Council, which ruled Fallujah after the US was forced to withdraw, put posters up around the city which "listed religious infractions, such as women not covering their heads or men selling music, which would be met with death. "

And from the San Jose Mercury News, another leader of Sgrena's resistance fighters in Fallujah:

Sheik Zafir al-Ubaidi. A prominent Fallujah cleric, he provided religious guidance to the insurgents' council and issued religious edicts that were enforced with public floggings and, some Fallujah residents said, executions without trial.
And while the resistance was busy executing any one they thought looked too 'Western', (for instance, note this woman who's body was found in Fallujah after its liberation from the jihadis. She had been beheaded, most likely because she had dyed her hair blonde), Sgrena international sympathy to their plight by claiming the residents of Fallujah were being massacred by the US!

What may be most disgusting about her propaganda is the fact that her stories helped bolster the claims of the jihadis that large numbers of women were being held in Iraqi prisons and abused by the Coalition. It was on these claims that fellow Italian peace-nicks Simona Pari and Simona Torretta were held and that Briton Margaret Hassan was murdered by her terrorist captors.

You will recall that one of their central demands was that "all women prisoners in Iraq be freed". Abu Musab al Zarqawi issued the same demand for the release of Kenneth Bigley and Jack Hensley. Hassan was first dressed up to resemble a prisoner in Abu Ghraib and then shot in the head. For Bigley and Hensley, the same garb was put on them before they were beheaded. The symbolism of their murder was clear.

Here is Sgrena's interview with a woman alleging Coalition abuse:

Once the Americans were in the apartment, they began to ransack the place, and then they arrested me....

On the way there they pointed out to me a man in a jellaba with a bag over his head, tied to a tree. It was my son. I recognised him by his trousers. They dragged him over to where I was and took the bag off his head. He had been horribly tortured, with deep cuts to his head. Then they said to him, 'Say goodbye to your mother.' After that, they put the bag back on his head and tied to him to a post again....

Then they turned up with the photos of my children. When I saw them, I began to weep, but they just yelled at me, "where's all that strength that Saddam gave you?" Then, throwing the photos on the ground, they shouted, "Say goodbye to your children. You'll not be seeing them for thirty years."....

Then they loaded me into a van, spread me out on the floor so nobody would see me, and drove me to the airport. There I was led into a big room where there was a doctor who wanted me to undress. I refused, saying that I was a Muslim and therefore couldn't do what he asked. Then he threatened to cut the clothes off me. I asked him if I could at least keep my underwear on and he agreed to that. In the end, however, he only checked my wrists....

There were times when they didn't give me any water or food at all. Then, from the neighbouring cells I could hear the screams of the men who were being tortured, sounds of weeping and screaming that were recorded and played back all night long full-blast...

[Sgrena asks] Did you know of cases of rape?

[Answer] 'Yes, but I'm not going to go into that. In our society, it's something you don't talk about.'

[Sgrena asks] And what about children, how were they treated?

[Answer] 'We heard them screaming. [The chiltren] were tortured too. Mostly dogs were set on them.'

Imagine yourself an Iraqi civilian with limited contact with the Coalition. Your only contact is with troops as they patrol the streets or as you pass checkpoint. Now imagine that this is the type of media you are exposed to on a day to day basis. You believe it. Your imam asks you to join the mujahadin and fight the Zionist-Crusader forces that are in your country to rape your women and torture your children. What do you do?

Of course the anser is obvious. You join the mujahadin to kill the Coalition forces. But not just Americans--Italians, Poles, Britons. They are all the men responsible for using nuclear weapons, dropping napalm on civilians, torturing children, and humiliating Muslim women.

Giuliana Sgrena is responsible for her part of the lies which directly led to the deaths of coalition forces, Iraqi civilians, and western hostages.

Her propaganda and treason should make us pause in believing the lies she continues to spout against the United States. The inconsistencies of her testimony regarding the tragic death of Nicola Calipari and how they just don't add up from what is known is documented here.

As she today accuses the US of attempted assassination, we should remember that this is not the first time she has made such ludicrious statements. From an article she wrote for Die Ziet during the initial liberation of Baghdad:

What we believed was impossible has happened. The Americans have not spared even the mythic Hotel Al-Rashid [where reporters were staying]. It was only scratched. Was that a mistake? Or was it supposed to be a message?
Sgrena, it seems, actually believes her own rhetoric when she claims that 'The Americans are the biggest enemies of mankind'.

Like the Nazi propagandist Goebbels before her who believed that behind all of mankinds ills stood a Jew, Sgrena believes that the world is threatened by a vast American conspiracy aimed at oppressing the world. Like Goebbels, Sgrena is not just a 'journalist', she is a propagandist for the enemy. Unlike Goebbels, though, who took his own life before facing the justice of Nuremburg, Sgrena returns to the land she betrayed a martyr and a hero. Let us hope the world community realizes the depths of her character before it is too late.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:01 PM | Comments |

Mount St. Helens Volcano Erupting

Mount St. Helens is spewing some ash this afternoon. Here is a live images from Johnston's Ridge observatory at Mount St. Helens. Other images and news from the volcano are posted below.

See, I'm interested in all things that explode. After all, volcanos are nature's nuclear bombs!

Here is a live image of Mount St. Helens. If you don't see anything it's either a) night b) erupting. In case of b please evacuate. Thank you.

I posted on this yesterday, but there is just something so cool about a Volcano...you know, erupting! Speed of Thought and I'm sure many others are volcano watching too.

The volcano seems to be less active this morning, but don't get too complaicent. This eruption came with no warning and with no sizeable earthquakes to warn us.

KATU:

Mount St. Helens appears to be settling down this morning after a startling blast shot gritty volcanic ash to about 36-thousand feet above sea level.
CNN:Scientists want to peer inside the crater of Mount St. Helens on Wednesday to locate the origins of a plume of ash and steam that spewed nearly seven miles high into the air Tuesday night.

Geologists cautioned the explosion wasn't necessarily a harbinger of a larger or more destructive eruption.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in Vancouver began a 24-hour volcano watch after the eruption at 5:20 p.m. (8:20 p.m. ET). Nearly five hours later, the plume remained visible in satellite photos.

Glowing tendrils of lava were spotted inside the mountain's crater following the explosion. Although the plume rose nearly twice as high as one produced by the last eruption in October, the geological agency classified the event as "small," according to an advisory on the Web site of its Cascades Volcano Observatory.

No damage or injuries were reported. Some air traffic had to be routed around the plume as it rose to 36,000 feet.

Ten small earthquakes were measured in the area on Tuesday leading up to the eruption. The largest appeared to be a magnitude 2.5, according to the USGS.

After a relatively quiet night, a small jet of steam could be seen rising from the mountain on Wednesday.

The ash remained in the air over Montana and was visible for more than 50 miles (80 kilometers), prompting some motorists to stop their cars and watch. Falling ash was reported in towns up to 90 miles north and east of Mount St. Helens.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:27 AM | Comments |

WTW: Instalanche vs. Instant Lunch

I finally got an Instalanche!! Thank you Glenn Reynolds, my life is now complete. I now feel...what's the word? Violated. No, I mean validated.

But contrary to popular belief, an Instalanche isn't the end-all-be-all of blogging. In fact, as a member of that class of Americans known as "white trash" (we prefer to be called people of the soil, but that aint gonna happen) I would prefer an instant lunch over an instalanche.

Resurrected from the vast archives of My Pet Jawa, here is a classic to celebrate my first real Instalanche and White Trash Wednesday. Instalanche vs. Instant Lunch.

How do the two compare?

Instalanche-immediate spike in traffic, lasting up to 48 hours.
Instant Lunch-immediate spike in sodium level, MSG headache up to 12 hours.

Instalanche-expect at least two or three bloggers to get a kick out of your post and add you to the blogroll.
Insant Lunch-expect at least two or three co-workers to get a kick out of you eating the sh*t they swore they'd never touch again their first day out of college.

Instalanche-a sudden feeling of self-satisfaction knowing that somehow your post drew the attention of the right-blogosphere's top blogger.
Instant Lunch-a sudden feeling of stomach-satisfaction, with the caveat that the empty calories you just scarfed down will leave you lethargic for the rest of the day.

Instalanche-with the sudden spike in traffic you can now up your Blog Ad rate to just under covering your total monthly ISP and blog host bill.
Instant Lunch-with the money you saved by eating cheap MSG laden quasi-Asian food you can now afford to run to the video store and rent the latest Adam Sandler film--only to find that you remember neither the food nor the film in the morning.

I'm off to edumacate the masses. For more White Trash Wednesday fun, visit these sites:


By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:09 AM | Comments |

Islamic Army in Iraq Releases Video of Sudanese Hostages

UPDATE: This is an archive page. For the latest information on terrorist communiques and videos, please go to the MAIN PAGE here.

UPDATE 4/23/05: Islamic Army in Iraq releases video of downed civilian helicopter, murders American survivor. Story, images, and video HERE.
-------------------------

The Islamic Army in Iraq has released a video of two Sudanese truck drivers now held hostage. The names of the hostages are Mohammed Haroun Hamad and Maher Ataya, Reuters reports. In the video the truck drivers plea with other Muslims to stay out of Iraq. Images from the video will be posted here later.

In similar videos in the past, the jihadis execute the truck drivers after forcing them to 'confess' to the 'crime' of working with the Coalition or with the Iraqi Interim government. The helpless victims are then branded apostates. Under Islamic law the maximum penalty for apostasy is death.

"This work is an abandonment of Islam. I advise others to leave any work with the occupying infidel because the hand of justice will reach them wherever they are," the hostages said, reading from a statement." (Reuters)

The two said they worked for a Turkish firm driving out of a base in Northern Iraq. Scores of Turkish truck drivers have been murdered by terrorist forces in Iraq, many of them have been beheaded.

The Islamic Army in Iraq is allied with Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Mesopotamia (Iraq) terrorist organization. What is odd about this video is that The Islamic Army in Iraq generally operates in areas south of Baghdad. The Sunni triangle and borders of Kurdistan are usually the territory of Ansar al-Sunna or Zarqawi's al Qaeda.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:29 AM | Comments |

Dale Grib Rusty Shackleford and Friends on Sgrena Shooting

Bill Dauterive
But Chris Matthews said the eyetalian reporter said the guys that that kidnapped her said the Americans didn't want her to get out alive. Why would he say she said they said that?

Dale Gribble Rusty Shackleford
It's a conspiracy! I told you before, this all goes back to Bush bein' a member of Skull and Bones.

Hank Hill
Damnit Dale! Dubya is a Texan, and there are three things that I can't abide by - people speakin' ill of the president of the United States, people speakin' ill of Texans, and people speakin' ill of propane and propane accessories.

Dale Gribble
I still say the Illuminati are involved in this somehow.

John from Wuzzadem has the rest.

and speaking of Giuliana Sgrena, Phin went Moonbat watching and spotted the illusive "journalista osor americanus antepilanum" in its native habitat here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:13 AM | Comments |

Rusty Shackleford is a Jewish-Pig-Zionist

Hey, here's a funny one from an anti-Semite in New Zealand.

"Anyone who uses the term 'blood libel' just has to be Jewish, and most
likely zionist.... which neatly brackets the objectivity of garbage on your
blog.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Never wrestle with a pig.
You just get dirty, and the pig enjoys it."

Cause you know, J-O-Os can't be 'objective'....I mean, not like good Protestants like, say, Dan Rather.

*I am not Jewish, but take the accusation as a compliment. How about, honorary J-O-O??

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:03 AM | Comments |

California Jobs Group Caught Outsourcing

A jobs-creation group funded by business and supported by Gov. Schwarzenegger, Citizens to Save California (CSC), has been outsourcing work to India. The move has been defended as being a small part of the group's total effort. Nonetheless, political opponents and critics are accusing the organization of being disingenuous because there is no shortage of Californians able to do the work.

Responding in a press release, the CSC stated that the controversy "is another desperate, political stunt" and a "thinly veiled attempt to derail" the reforms needed to improve the job climate.

The outfall of the controversy remains to be seen, but one thing is certain. With the outsourcing and jobs issues always potentially explosive, it seems the CSC committed a serious political blunder by allowing the outsourcing of work to India. Tsk, tsk.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 03:34 AM | Comments |

What's Next, Debtors' Prisons?

Disclaimer: I'm not sure how Rusty feels about this issue, and for all I know we're diametrically opposed... so just make sure this post isn't attributed to him. I should also note that I'm not exactly a "liberal pushover." I believe, wholeheartedly, in the "ownership society." That said:

I'm sorry, but there's just something obscene about the way this Bankruptcy Bill is sailing to passage, without even token opposition from anyone. It seems almost self-evident to me that if it's such a walk in the park to file bankruptcy under current statute then the appropriate reaction from a responsible credit industry would be to... lend less, or at least cut the predatory lending, deception, etc.. That being the case, there's simply no way to interpret the desire to make bankruptcy as painful as having the skin stripped off your back by a cat-o-nine-tails (instead of just losing a hand or something), unless it's an over-arching GRUNCH (what R. Buckminster Fuller used to call the "Great Universal Cash Heist.") Gosh, you'd think that'd be a Democrat issue, right? I mean them being the guardians of the poor and disadvantaged and all.

We know how that worked out, for Iraq and the Middle East.

A few years ago I wrote a dissertation on the influence of money in elections, concluding that it was about as important as ideology or incumbency, which is fine with me frankly. I'm not a purist. But this is something else. This is rather clearly a case where an industry has both bought and sold a congress... to the detriment not only of most of the middle class, but quite possibly the country itself. And nary a soul to stand and raise their voice against the invisible tide. Not even those bastions of progressive activism on behalf of the downtrodden: Kennedy and Byrd. You'd think Democrats weren't really progressive any more, or something.

Is there no shame? None at all? Yes, I know we're "new conservatives," but this smells like something that's been under an ancient Danish dock since before the Great War. Glenn Reynolds is willing to say so, while he posts a challenge to the blogosphere from Jim Bennet:

It has occured to me that the bankruptcy bill (which I detest for the same reasons that you have mentioned) would be an interesting test of blogospheric power. Here's a situation where the Democrats are planning to make a major issue out of Bolton's appointment to the UN -- where his crime is merely speaking out loud what most Americans already feel about that place -- while rolling over to the corporate lobby on something most Americans would want some opposition to. If the blogosphere could mount an effective campaign for people to write to their senators, it would mark its emergence as a genuinely independent force in US politics.

Is it too late? Let's post the names of some of the honorable legislators in the odorous back pockets of the credit card industry, starting with Jim Moran (VA) and Hillary Clinton (NY). But the mugging continues...

As Louis O. Kelso, the inventor of the ESOP said once: "every step that concentrates ownership and control of capital is a disguised leap toward socialism." This is an evil bill. Yes, evil. And if bribery weren't implicated in the bum's rush to get it by, it wouldn't even be on the agenda.

Update: Armed Liberal is on the same soapbox (and has been for some time). He says calls are better than emails.

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and Anticipatory Retaliation)

By Demosophist at 01:11 AM | Comments |

March 08, 2005

Images of Sgrena's Car (Updated-now fortified with essential Sgrena lies!)

UPDATE: Clearer images via AP (hat tip: House of Wheels)

UPDATE: Welcome minions of Glenn Reynolds, Reason and NRO's The Corner (thank you Jonah!). Please, for the love of all that is good and holy, Blogroll The Jawa Report! and come back often for all your commie-propagandist fisking needs.

UPDATE 3/09: A new post is up documenting Giuliana Sgrena's Lies, Inconsistencies, and Treason.

Italian television station Tg1 is running images of a car purported to be the one used by Giuliana Sgrena. If this is the car then it would contradict earlier reports that Sgrena's rescuers had used a truck. If accurate, the condition of the car would also directly contradict the story told by Sgrena in which she claimed 300-400 bullets were fired, one of which hit Italian secret-service agent Nicola Calipari. Earlier reports of what was purported to be Sgrena's get away car proved inaccurate.

UPDATE: I am inserting these AP photos because they are much clearer. I found them via House of Wheels who in turn got them from Charles Johnson.

Click for bigger pictures

Giuliana_Sgrena_car2.jpg

More...

Only a single bullet hole can be seen in the image below, taken from Italy's Left-Wing paper LaRepubblica.

The Google translation of the captions that go with these photos is not clear. They may claim to show more bullet holes where indicated, but if they do then my eyes fail me. Perhaps the tire shot, but the rest don't seem to show any real damage.

Update: Thanks to reader John gives us this translation of the caption that accompanies each photo:

"The car in which Giuliana Sgrena and Nicholas Calipari travelled with American bullet holes. The images were transmitted from Tg1."

big shout out to Eddie for tipping me on this.

UPDATE: Italian Foreign Minister's version of the story:

"The car was travelling at a speed that couldn't have been more than 40kph," Fini said. He said that a light was flashed at the car after a curve and that the gunfire -- lasting 10 or 15 seconds -- started immediately afterward, disputing US military claims that several attempts were made to stop the car.
Sgrena's BBC version of the story:
We were on our way to the airport when the tanks started to strike against us and he tried to cover me and he was shot. He died and, me, I was safe but he was dead.
Another Sgrena version of the story from Il Manifesto:
The Americans shone a flashlight at the car and then fired between 300 and 400 bullets at if from an armoured vehicle.
And another Sgrena version of the story, from an earlier paragraph:
They told me that we were less than a kilometer away...when...I only remember fire. At that point, a rain of fire and bullets hit us, shutting up forever the cheerful voices of a few minutes earlier
Look at the pictures then you tell me which seems more likely: one of the many different versions of the story Sgrena is telling or the US version of the story:
The 3rd ID issued a press statement last week saying the car was racing toward the checkpoint when they signaled it to stop, fired warning shots and finally shot the engine block of the car. The shots killed one and wounded two, including the journalist.
Or this report from the US perspective:
The Army's 3rd Infantry Division, which last week resumed command of Baghdad operations after participating in the 2003 invasion, said the soldiers had warned the approaching car repeatedly before opening fire.

According to the division, the patrol attempted to warn the driver to stop by hand and arm signals, flashing white lights, and firing warning shots in front of the car."

Of course, we now know they missed, but it is a far-cry fom a deliberate 'assassination' or 'ambush' as Sgrena puts it.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Opinion Bug finds this new nugget from ABC News. Dayam, that's why were Sgrena central, baby!!:

senior U.S. military official tells ABC News he believes the investigation into the fatal shooting of an Italian intelligence officer by U.S. troops in Iraq will ultimately prove the officer’s car was traveling in excess of 100 mph.

Scared Monkeys offers the following important analysis:

1. The US Soldiers are brilliant marksmen by placing multiple bullets through the same hole.

2. The US soldiers are terrible marksmen, firing 300-400 rounds at the automobile and missing a huge percentage of them.

3. She is a lying #$%#$% communist, who has an ax to grind against the US and its Iraqi strategy and is using this to further her own aims.

Looks like the crack staff of Six Meat Buffet find the, er, real car impounded down at Cooter's place until Sgrena pays a fine to Hazard County.

Evil White Guy has a good compare and contrast picture between Sgrena's car and Bonnie and Clyde's.

UPDATE: Pirate's Cove "...pictures from La Repubblica of the car that Giuliana Sgrena was riding in as the guns and tanks and A-10's and outer space death rays attacked her, all ordered personally by President Bush, of course." ha!

Another UPDATE: Since I don't very much feel like doing another Sgrena post tonight, I'll just insert this from a translation from Zacth Ei (via LGF), did for him of a Dutch paper. If you want the full background of Sgrena's duplicity, her lies, blood libel, and further evidence that she was a first rate propagandist for her terrorist captors see my post "Giuliana Sgrena's Blood Libel Against the US". Among other things, Sgrena accuses the US (long-before her capture) of dropping napalm on civilians, of massacres, of child torture, and even of using nuclear weapons in Iraq. You heard me, that was not a typo, nuclear weapons! Ok, Zach describes the journalist writing this article as a man who used to work for a Communist paper, so we'll set aside the obvious objection that he was biased against Sgrena for political reasons:

Be careful not to get kidnapped,' I told the female Italian journalist sitting next to me in the small plane that was headed for Baghdad. 'Oh no,' she said. 'That won't happen. We are siding with the oppressed Iraqi people. No Iraqi would kidnap us....

'The Americans are the biggest enemies of mankind,' the three women behind me had told me, for Sgrena travelled to Iraq with two Italian colleagues who hated the Americans as well...

'You don't understand the situation. We are anti-imperialists, anti-capitalists, communists,' they said. The Iraqis only kidnap American sympathizers, the enemies of the Americans have nothing to fear.

Damn it feels good to be a gangsta!

---Sgrena would have gotten away with it too, if it wasn't for those meddling bloggers!

---heh, no one does funny quite like Jeff Goldstien.

UPDATE 3/09: A new post is up documenting Giuliana Sgrena's Lies, Inconsistencies, and Treason.

--Sobek Pundit finds this, ahem, photo correction released by the AP. Looks like Sgrena's version of events is right on.

--Ken Wheaton finds the inevitable Sgrena-Star Wars connection!

UPDATE: Ok, I promise no more updates. Confederate Yankee does a bang-up job analyzing the rate of fire of various weapons in use in Iraq (and various other CSI type stuff) and comes up with the *shocking* conclusion that Sgrena is a *liar*.

Also on the trail of that lying commie propagandist: MH King, OpiniPundit, LGF, James Joyner, Michelle Malkin, Scared Monkeys, Way Off Bass, In the Bullpen, Kevin Aylward, Evil White Guy, Now You Know, Myopic Zeal, Captain Ed, Slant Point, Armageddon Project, Red State Rant, The American Mind, Slings and Arrows, Coyote Blog, Jacob's Room, Joust the Facts, SondraK.....wow, I sort of lost track after here. Just look down the trackback list. If you tried to trackback and got an error, please e-mail me.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:20 PM | Comments |

Mount St. Helens Erupting (Again)

Mount St. Helens spewed some ash this afternoon. Scroll to the extended entry to see pics from today's eruption and a live images from Johnston's Ridge observatory at Mount St. Helens. See, I'm interested in all things that explode. After all, volcanos are nature's nuclear bombs!

Here is a live image of Mount St. Helens. If you don't see anything it's either a) night b) erupting. In case of b please evacuate. Thank you.

Here is a pic from this afternoon from MSNBC

And part of a KIROT story.

Mount St. Helens released a towering plume of ash on Tuesday.

The plume was accompanied by an earthquake of about 2.0 magnitude.

The volcano has vented ash and steam since last fall, when thousands of small earthquakes marked a seismic reawakening of the 9,677-foot mountain.

Late afternoon television footage showed the plume billowing thousands of feet into the air, then drifting slowly to the northeast.

The ash explosion happened around 5:25 p.m., about an hour after a 2.0 magnitude quake rumbled on the east side of the mountain, said Bill Steele, coordinator of the Pacific Northwest Seismograph Network at the University of Washington.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:48 PM | Comments |

Jawa Report on the Radio

Last reminder. I will be on Stanford's KZSU 90.1 FM today from around 5:30-6:00 pm Pacific time. You can listen live here. No call-ins, but the host wants to ask me the important questions so just e-mail kzsushark-at-yahoo.com with your Gannon/Sgrena related querries.

UPDATE: Bleg for e-mails. Please e-mail the host with questions for me. If not, my ego will be shattered!!! Before you ask the inevitable question, though, the answer is "8 inches".

UPDATE: I'm up pretty quick. Feel free to leave live comments. I'll try to read them during the interview.

UPDATE: I'm on hold. Last chance to get in on the interview from the beginning.

UPDATE: And I'm spent.............thanks for the questions y'all!!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 07:21 PM | Comments |

Al Qaeda Claims Zarqawi Photos Authentic, May be in Captivity

SITE translates this communique from Abu Musab al Zarqawi's al Qaeda Organization in Iraq. It seems that the photos released by CNN on Saturday are actually Zarqawi:

According to the statement, these photos were taken from an al-Qaeda mujahid who was killed in a battle in Iraq. “It happened then that these pictures [those recently broadcast by the media] fell into the infidels’ hands,” the text reads.
The message was written because of media accounts that Zarqawi had been captured (again). Another statement by the group today, via SITE, suggests that Zarqawi might, indeed, be either dead, captured, or that al Qaeda fears informants will turn him in.

“We hold Abu Musab [al-Zarqawi] in our hearts and we embrace him and defend him with our lives as it is the duty of a Moslem to stand by his Brother and not betray him.”

UPDATE: The Iraqi government issued two more photos of Zarqawi yesterday. Here they are. Remember, if you see this man please do the world a favor and kill him.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:52 PM | Comments |

Sgrena's Fallujah vs. US Marines' Fallujah

Earlier I reported on Giuliana Sgrena's version of Fallujah. She called the Marine invasion of that city a 'massacre' and accused the Marines of dropping napalm on civilians. Blackfive has this after-action report done by a US Marine who was in Fallujah. Compare the two versions.

Hmmm I wonder if this from the Marine:

Footholds are strongpoints where the squad can fight from. At the foothold Marines can return fire, throw grenades, and use explosive devices to neutralize the enemy. After the enemy has been damaged the squad can move in and clear the house. If the roof top is the foothold the squad is holding, then the roof could be breached by a directional charge. Grenades or incendiary devices can be thrown into the structure flushing out the enemy......

[from a list of demolition devices Marines used in Fallujah and should be familiar with for future urban-warfare situations]

2. “House Guest” (Named by 2nd squad, 1st platoon, I Company) – Propane tanks placed in the central hallway with C-4 used to ignite it, creates a fuel air explosive – Used for bringing down a house when contact is made inside, propane tanks must be full

3. A 60 or 81 mm white phosphorous mortar round, wrapped three times with detonation cord and a 1/4 or 1/2 stick of C-4 – Used when contact is made in a house and the enemy must be burned out

4. Molotov cocktails – one part liquid laundry detergent, two parts gas – Used when contact is made in a house and the enemy must be burned out.

might just explain this wacky theory of Sgrena's and the "truth is out there" sqadrons of the Left:
«We buried them, but we could not identify them because they were charred from the napalm bombs used by the Americans». People from Saqlawiya village, near Falluja, told al Jazeera television, based in Qatar... The sad story of common graves, which started at Saddam’s times, is not yet finished. Nobody could confirm if napalm bombs have been used in Falluja, but other bodies found last year after the fierce battle at Baghdad airport were also completely charred and some thought of nuclear bombs.
And the Left continues to believe this woman's alternate reality......[hat tip: Ace]

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:25 PM | Comments |

Breaking News: Rusty Shackleford is CIA Agent!

Do CIA agents get paid better than libertarian bloggers? Cause, you know, if they do sign me up!!

"Having failed to murder the reporter, the US spooks unleash a smear campaign to sell the public on the idea that she only got what she deserved."

Like Goebbels before her, if Giuliana Sgrena had gotten what she deserved she'd be, er, dead!

Reminder: If you would like to ask Rusty Shackleford, CIA agent, a question, remember that I will be on the Shark Tank show on Stanford's KZSU 90.1 FM today from around 5:30-6:00 pm. You can listen live by going to their website here. No call-ins, but if you have a question you would like asked of me just e-mail kzsushark-at-yahoo.com.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:46 PM | Comments |

Chechen Terrorist Leader Killed

Aslan Maskhadov, the leader of Chechnya's rebellion, has been killed by Russian forces.

Muskhadov had a $10 million dollar bounty on his head and was considered the most wanted man in Russia. Maskhadov had led the Chechen rebellion in the early 1990s until a cease-fire was negotiated with then President Boris Yeltsin.

Maskhadov was a bitter rival to the al Qaeda linked Shamil Basayev. Basayev has been linked to the Beslan massacres and has promised more Beslan like attacks in the future. Maskhadov ran against Basayev in 1997 for the Chechen Presidency and won.

Maskhadov was later driven out of office by the Russians when he declared Chechnya an independent state.

The press reports that Maskhadov was simply a leader of a nationalist movement in Chechnya are mistaken. Maskhadov is accused of planning the hostage crisis at the Nord-Ost theater in Moscow. 129 hostages later died, mostly as the result of a botched rescue operation.

Further, the MSM likes to portray Maskhadov as a moderate, contrasting him to the al Qaeda linked Basayev, but Maskhadov's nationalism was tied closely to his Muslim identity. His army is composed of jihadis drawn from around the world to repel the infidel invaders (Russia). Clearly, Maskhadov was a jihadi who saw his mission to end the 400 year old Russian control of Chechnya as a religious imperetive.

Images: (top) Reuters photo of the dead Maskhadov. (bottom) Maskhadov pauses to say prayers with his army of jihadis. (below) Russian television station NTV airs video of Maskhadov dead on the street.

Mosnews:

Nikolai Patrushev, the head of Russia’s FSB domestic security service, reported the death of Chechen separatist leader Aslan Maskhadov to Vladimir Putin on Tuesday evening.

Patrushev confirmed earlier reports saying that Maskhadov, one of Russia’s most wanted men, was killed during a security raid in the town of Tolstoi Yurt in Chechnya. His body had been identified.

Patrushev said that Russian security forces suffered no casualties during the raid. On his part, President Putin instructed Patrushev to carry out additional expert examinations. “Should those reports be confirmed, all the participants of the operation are to be put forward for state awards,” he said.

Russia’s NTV network broadcast footage of the shirtless body of a man it identified as Maskhadov lying on the ground amid debris.

Meanwhile, Ramzan Kadyrov, deputy prime minister in the pro-Moscow Chechen government and son of the late president of Chechnya Akhmad Kadyrov, said Tuesday that Maskhadov’s death was an accident. Security forces had planned to capture him alive, Ekho Moskvy radio station reported citing Ramzan Kadyrov. Kadyrov said Maskhadov was killed mishandling a weapon.

The article also blames Maskhadov for involvement in the Beslan school massacre, but Maskhadov has denied involvemnt in it instead blaming Basayev. For instance, this earlier Mosnews report:
Moscow blames Maskhadov for a string of deadly operations in Russia, including an attack on a Moscow theater, a bombing opposite the Kremlin and an armed action against a school in the south Russian town of Beslan. At least 326 hostages — half of them children — died at the school in Beslan last year.

Moscow also links Maskhadov, and field commander Shamil Basayev, to groups that conducted attacks such as the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

Recently Maskhadov had called for talks with Moscow on Chechen demands for independence, but the Kremlin insists it will not negotiate with terrorists. Some critics of Moscow’s policies in Chechnya saw Maskhadov as more moderate than Basayev and a man with whom the Kremlin could negotiate.

Russian leaders, fearing a breakaway by Chechnya could trigger secession moves by other regions in the sprawling federation, have fought two wars in Chechnya.


CNN:
Chechen rebel leader Aslan Maskhadov -- who had a $10 million bounty on his head -- has been killed by Russian troops, according to Russian news agencies.

Russian NTV television showed Federal Security Service head Nikolai Patrushev telling President Vladimir Putin that Maskhadov had been killed in a "special operation" in the village of Tolstoy-Yurt.

CNN's Jill Dougherty said that Russian NTV television had shown pictures of a shirtless bearded corpse that resembled Maskhadov.

She said he had been hiding in a bunker when he died, according to Russian news agency reports.

Russian troops had wanted to take him alive, she said, but according to reports in Moscow the weapons of his bodyguards "were either misused or something went awry."

Earlier Tuesday, Russian officials reported that three rebels who were planning a large terrorist attack on the administration building in Tolstoy-Yurt had been detained.

hat tip: venom & Bill Dauterieve

Others: James Joyner

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:06 PM | Comments |

Terrorist Choice in Vehicles Used for Sgrena Escape Plan: A Truck!

UPDATE 4:05 Central time: Italian television station Tg1 reports that a car was used. I have pictures up here. Not sure which report to believe yet.....

This important and overlooked new detail arises. If you have seen as many jihadi videos as me then you know that the vehicle of choice is the small Japanese pickup truck. Check this WaTimes article out:

The left-leaning Italian newspaper La Repubblica reported yesterday that Mr. Calipari decided not to use available escort protection from the elite commandos who protect Italy’s Baghdad embassy.

Instead, he rented an inconspicuous pickup truck to recover Miss Sgrena, wrote La Repubblica’s top investigative reporter, Giuseppe D’Avanzo.

A freaking truck? Are you kidding me? You rented a pickup truck to drive down a road where terrorist are known to attack daily?!?!!

The vehicle has been located and a preliminary investigation reveals that "Something that car did caused the soldiers to fire."

hat tip Charles Johnson

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:37 AM | Comments |

Let's Kill the Infidels with our Best Weapon: Kids!

From the it's so disgusting you're going to want to watch your lunch department. These are Giuliana Sgrena's friends and Michael Moore's minutemen. The Scotsman:

Placing the missile back in a wooden box beside him, the teacher then passes a wrapped lump of plastic explosive around the class, sparking a flurry of grasping hands. "Come on! It's my turn," hisses one impatient young boy at his neighbour.

So begins lesson one of jihad for juniors, the newest recruits to Iraq's insurgency. After nearly two years of struggle which has decimated their adult ranks, resistance commanders are grooming a fresh generation of child soldiers to carry on the fight.

UPDATE: Commissar notes in the comments, rightly, that most of the victims of the jihadis are fellow Iraqis---so I changed the name of the post from "Let's Kill the Americans" to "Let's Kill the Infidels".

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:30 AM | Comments |

Letter from Italian Reader

Here is a letter from an Italian reader. Evidence that not all in Italy are buying Sgrena's lies hook, line, and sinker:

Ms. Sgrena's speech are pure ideological tales. They (the italian Communist) hate the US or I should say they hate an ideological representation of the US, a very strong mental building of which they need to express their absurd ideas.

Most italian respect the US and the job that you are doing to defeat the terrorism.


Raffaello ****

Firenze, Italia

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:10 AM | Comments |

Gannon Worship in Lebanon?

I'm off to edumacate the masses. In the meantime the Carnivorous Conservative has found evidence of Gannon worship at a pro-Syria rally in Lebanon.

UPDATE: The cure for Gannon worship--Lebanese chicks!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:34 AM | Comments |

Italy Demands Justice in Sgrena Incident

Italy's Foreign Affairs minister announced today that he believed the version of events offered by Giuliana Sgrena in a dispute over the facts on what really happened when American soldiers openned fire on the freed hostage's vehicle. The incident left on Italian secret-service agent, Nicola Calipari, dead near the Baghdad airport.

Giuliana Sgrena is a known anti-American propagandist and liar with a history of accusing the United States of the most outlandish crimes. In the past Sgrena has claimed the US used napalm on civilians, massacred thousands, and tortured children. Sgrena has even hinted that the U.S. used nuclear weapons during the Iraq invasion. Sgrena's lies and propaganda are documented here.

In a bizarrely contradictory statement, the foreign minister claimed the incident was both an "accident" yet that some one needed to be punished.

"It was an accident," Fini told lawmakers. "This does not prevent, in fact, it makes it a duty for the government to demand that light be shed on the murky issues, that responsibilities be pinpointed and, where found, that the culprits be punished." (AP)

The Italian minister also bought one version of Sgrena's story.

"The car was travelling at a speed that couldn't have been more than 40kph," Fini said. He said that a light was flashed at the car after a curve and that the gunfire -- lasting 10 or 15 seconds -- started immediately afterward, disputing US military claims that several attempts were made to stop the car.

Sgrena, in one version of the story written for Italian audiences disputed a US claim that lights were flashed at the car to warn it to slow down. However, in an English language interview with the BBC she admitted lights had been flashed.

In another version of the story Sgrena also claimed the vehicle she was driving in was speeding so fast in the rain that the driver almost lost control.

The US claims to have shot warning shots at the car, something Sgrena denies. However, Sgena does claim that between 300-400 shots were fired. A single bullet hit one of the three passengers making it all but certain that the US version of events is accurate and that Sgrena is intentionally lying to make the US look bad.

In comparison, Bonnie and Clyde's car was hit with a comparable number of bullets, 300-400, yet both were hit about 50 times. It is likely that the initial shots Sgrena heard were warning shots. The incident happened on a rainy night.

Sgrena has called the incident an "ambush" and has alluded to the US trying to send a message to anti-war reporters. Sgrena made a similar claim during the US invasion when the hotel she was staying at was hit by coalition fire causing minor damage.

The incident has heightened the unpopularity of Italian participation in the US led occupation. Italy has about 3,000 troops in Iraq. Sgrena is not only openly anti-war but also openly anti-American. Her communist newspaper, Il Manifesto, has used the incident to rally anti-war sentiments. An anti-war protest has been scheduled by Il Manifesto to honor Sgrena's release.

UPDATE: Jack Lewis also documents Sgrena's contradictory stories here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:16 AM | Comments |

March 07, 2005

Giuliana Sgrena's Blood Libel Against the US

Giuliana Sgrena is a propagandist for the Communist daily rag Il Manifesto. Her writings do not reveal a bias, they reveal that Sgrena is an enemy of the United States of America and responsible for supporting terrorists and the murder of American soldiers and civilians.

She accuses the US of complicity in mass murder, the use of napalm on civilians, the targetting of journalists, and the torture of children.

Since the MSM has now reduced itself to reporting Sgrena's contradictory stories as fact, shouldn't we be examaning he track record?

One of Giuliana's friends dropped us a line and assured us that Sgrena is above reproach.

The following is evidence that Sgrena is a lying propagandist who issued blood lible reports. Her reports are so disgusting that a reader of them, if they were to be believed, would be morally bound to fight the US.

From a German article in Die Zeit we learn that this is not the first time Sgrena has accused the US of targetting reporters (more on Die Ziet's bias here and here):

What we believed was impossible has happened. The Americans have not spared even the mythic Hotel Al-Rashid [where reporters were staying]. It was only scratched. Was that a mistake? Or was it supposed to be a message?
It only gets worse from there.

Sgrena was documenting 'US war-crimes' against residents of Fallujah when she was 'abducted' by terrorists. Here is what Sgrena was writing about shortly before she was captured:

The massacre in Falluja continues .
By massacre, Sgrena means the US invasion of the city, not the massacre of innocent civilians by terrorists. Here is evidence of what Sgrena calls 'the resistance' was up to in Fallujah. Check out the entire slide-show.

Remember, al Jazeera admits that Sgrena had "very good contacts in Baghdad, including with the ulamas [Muslim clergy]" and was interviewing refugees at a mosque said to be the center of insurgent activities in Baghdad when she was 'abducted'.

In this story, Sgrena admits that no facts exist to bolster the outrageous claims, yet she reports that American troops were using Napalm and even nuclear weapons!!!

«We buried them, but we could not identify them because they were charred from the napalm bombs used by the Americans». People from Saqlawiya village, near Falluja, told al Jazeera television, based in Qatar, that they helped bury 73 bodies of women and children completely charred, all in the same grave. The sad story of common graves, which started at Saddam’s times, is not yet finished. Nobody could confirm if napalm bombs have been used in Falluja, but other bodies found last year after the fierce battle at Baghdad airport were also completely charred and some thought of nuclear bombs.
She repeats the allegation here along with alleging a civilian massacre in Fallujah by US forces:
2,085 killed in the attack according to the information given out by Iraqi Security Minister Quassim Daud, without specifying the number of civilians. The problem, says the Minister, is that of identification, as many of the victims were not carrying documents. But many observers say that the problem is that many of the bodies were unrecognisable because they were so carbonised that the use of napalm was suspected.
Here is another blood libel statement from Sgrena:
Fallujah is dying under the criminally indifferent gaze not only of the United States, but also of the Iraqi government, or at least the interim Prime Minister Allawi
Here is Sgrena's pro-terrorist rallying piece for the 'resistance' in Fallujah:
A fire rain crashed over Falluja as soon as the curfew entered into force, at 6 p.m., sunset, after the Iftar breaks the Ramadan fast. At the same time, from the minaret of the mosque, the voice of the Imam tried to rise over the noise of the bombs to incite the mujahidin to the battle, which for Falluja will surely be the hardest since the beginning of the invasion....

The excuse of terrorists is the pretext to destroy the symbol of resistance.

Here is another image from Sgrena's 'resistance' in Fallujah

Notice the flag? Below are images of beheading murder victims Jack Hensley and Ken Bigley.

More of Sgrena's blood libels agains the US. In this account she interviews a woman who claims US forces tortured her and her son:

dragged me down five flights of stairs, still in my nightdress. I only just managed to grab hold of my baya on my way out the door,' Mithal related. 'They took me to Sujud Palace, which had been named after Saddam's wife, Sajida. On the way there they pointed out to me a man in a jellaba with a bag over his head, tied to a tree. It was my son. I recognised him by his trousers. They dragged him over to where I was and took the bag off his head. He had been horribly tortured, with deep cuts to his head. Then they said to him, 'Say goodbye to your mother.' After that, they put the bag back on his head and tied to him to a post again. Then a soldier dragged me off again....

[Sgrena asks] Did you know of cases of rape?

[Answer] 'Yes, but I'm not going to go into that. In our society, it's something you don't talk about.'

[Sgrena asks] And what about children, how were they treated?

[Answer] 'We heard them screaming. [The chiltren] were tortured too. Mostly dogs were set on them.'

Where else do we find Sgrena's work? Howard Zinn's notoriously anti-American Z-Mag:
The sand of the desert has swallowed the victims of the various waves of repression, endured by the tormented country and perpetrated, first by the Soviet

invaders, then by the Taleban who have buried about 3000 Afghans of the Hazara ethnic group here, and finally by the militia of Rashid Dostum assisted by US and British agents. This last tragedy took place after the battle of Kunduz (beginning of December 2001), the last sack of Taleban resistence to the American bombardment. After bloody clashes, 5000 combatants - Talebans, Pakistanis, Chechens and "Arabs" - by then reduced to hunger, had surrundered to the Alliance of the North and had been handed over to the Uzbek General Rashid Dostum. 800 were taken to Qala-i-Janghi, about twenty kilometres from Mazar-i-Sharif, in the fortress of Dostum, one of the most bloodthirsty warlords. The prisoners were locked in the storehouse and massacred.

Of the roughly 5000 who left Kunduz for Shebarghan, little over 3000 would arrive; the others - died of suffocation or for wounds procured when some agents had fired on the containers "in order to let them breathe", others still ended with a blow on the back of the neck - were buried in the mass graves dug in the desert of Dasht-i-Layli, of which we found evident traces and testimonies during our visit to Shebarghan in June 2002 ...

Other testimonies of mass graves and of torture have been collected in a report by John Hefferman of the American organization Physicians for Human Rights (il Manifesto, May 29, 2002), [but] ignored by the American administration. Disappearances and torture, what the international legislation defines as "crimes of war", still unpunished, were also documented well by Jamie Doran in his "Massacre in Mazar", presented to the European and Italian parliaments and transmitted also by RAI 3 in the programme "C'era una volta", and described in an article in Le Monde Diplomatique/il Manifesto (September 2002). The tortures carried out in the prison of Shebarghan by CIA agents who were to select elements suspected of having ties with the organization of Osama bin Laden, al Qaida, to be sent to the US military base of Guantanamo in Cuba - blows on the neck bone and irreversible nerve injuries caused by leaving hands tied behind the back for too long - may now gain visibility again in the light of what is emerging in Iraq.

Giuliana Sgrena is a liar and a propagandist. The reason the terrorist fight our rebuilding efforts in Iraq is because they actually believe this type of propaganda.

Sgrena is a modern Goebbels, a soldier of the enemy engaged in spreading false and malicious rumors about America. Simply because you are a journalist does not mean you are not the enemy.

Ms. Sgrena, you are the enemy.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:14 PM | Comments |

Is Giuliana Sgrena Jeff Gannon?

Jay Tea: "Anyone know of any Italian communists in or around Cow Hampshire I could kidnap and threaten to kill? I hear there's good money in that, for very little risk..."

Wuzzadem: "I've been taken hostage by insurgents. They're actually very reasonable people, and decent chaps for the most part - except for the whole kidnapping thing - but they mean business. And by 'mean business', I'm not implying that they would harm me, but they might be forced to take me for a drive, and Mahmoud likes to play 'chicken' at checkpoints, so there's always a chance I could be shot by some overzealous American soldier."

Cranky Neocon: "Help Me Leon Trotsky - You're My Only Hope"

Sobek: Sgena=Gannon (You have to see this)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:11 PM | Comments |

Bolton Named Ambassador to UN

First Bono nominated for the World Bank and now Bolton? Ironincal. Speaking off the record, one UN employee responded here . Wait, I thought you said Michael Bolton.

VOA:

President Bush has picked John Bolton to be the United States' new ambassador to the United Nations.

Speaking to reporters Monday, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Mr. Bolton is a tough-minded diplomat who knows how to get things done. She said he will be a strong voice for U.N. reform.

Mr. Bolton currently serves as undersecretary of state for arms control and international security.

In that post, he helped set up the Proliferation Security Initiative, a global effort to stop the spread of weapons of mass destruction.

He has spoken out in favor of isolating Iran and North Korea because of their suspected nuclear weapons programs.

Mr. Bolton is known for a blunt speaking style that has sometimes caused friction with other countries. But Ms. Rice said some of Washington's best ambassadors have been those with the strongest voices.

If confirmed by the Senate, Mr. Bolton would succeed John Danforth, who retired in January.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:29 PM | Comments |

Egg Radio Rocks!

I'm not just saying that because they are paying me to say it either. I'm seriously. I'm saying that because KKKarl Rove ordered me to say it. Why not click on over, it's not like you're working anyway.....

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:49 PM | Comments |

Terrorist TAUGHT at US University, Is Expelled from Syria

Islamic terrorists kill because they are serious adherents of their religion. American universities, unable to make moral judgements about religious ideologies, only compound the problem. It's not only that the US education establishment equivocates between Palestinians that deliberately murder Jews and Arab civilians killed by the IDF in the crossfire, but that the American left has a deep alliance with terrorists.

Although most on the left would not agree that fundamentalist Islam is the solution to the world's problems, they do however agree with the jihadis on those problems. The jihadis and the left speak the same language--colonialism, imperialism, Zionism, American hegemony, etc. It is not surprising that this jihadi could teach in a US university.

INN:

The terrorist behind the Stage Club in Tel Aviv over a week ago taught Middle East Studies at a University in the US before he moved to Syria.

47-year-old Ramadan Shallah is the head of Islamic Jihad who was caught on tape ordering the attack by telephone from Damascus. A transcript of the call was given to US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Shallah was a PhD student at Durham University, in England from 1985-1990, where he wrote his thesis on the merits of Islamic Banking.

Shallah then moved from Durham to the University of South Florida in Tampa, where he taught Middle Eastern studies and headed the World and Islam Studies Enterprise, a think tank affiliated with the university.

In 1995 he became the head of Islamic Jihad and is now wanted for murder by Israel.

(ht: Robert Spencer)

UPDATE: Syria finally admits Shallah is a terrorist, expels him. JPOST:

Bowing to international pressure, Syria has ordered head of Hamas politburo Khaled Mashaal and Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shallah to leave Damascus, The Daily Telegraph reported on Sunday.

Islamic Jihad was behind the March 25 suicide bombing in the Tel Aviv 'Stage' nightclub, in which five Israelis lost their lives and over 50 suffered injuries.

"They have gone, and they have told me that they have gone," Khaled Fahum, the veteran head of the PLO in Damascus, told The Telegraph.

Mashaal had left for Qatar, while Shallah was being sheltered by Hizbullah in Lebanon, he said. "The government has closed their offices, cut off their phones and shut down their email," Fahum said. "I know this from both sides."

Meanwhile, the Sunday Times reported that Israel had passed on to the US transcripts of a phone conversation in which Shallah orders the March 25 suicide bombing on Tel Aviv's beachfront promenade.

via Jeff Goldstein who adds "YOU ARE DRIVING GOVERNMENTS OF THE REGION RIGHT INTO THE ARMS OF THE TERRORISTS AND THEIR ENABLERS, MR BUSH! YOUR INVASION OF IRAQ AND YOUR SO-CALLED “WAR ON TERROR” ARE THE SINGLE GREATEST GIFT YOU COULD HAVE GIVEN AL QAEDA!"

Hyscience reminds us that this is not the first time the University of South Florida had been in the news for its terrorist connections. Remember Sami Al-Arian who was indicted for his support of terrorism.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:47 PM | Comments |

World Respond to Shooting of Italian Agent

As predicted Giuliana Sgrena is using her ordeal to drum up anti-American sentiments in Italy. She was in Iraq for the explicit purpose of showing the American led effort in as negative a light as possible. The death of the Italian agent who freed her, while tragic, suit her anti-war purposes just fine.

Pravda:

There is something behind all this," Marta Belziti, 31, a distant relative of the dead intelligence agent, Nicola Calipari, said as she left the white marble of the Vittoriano monument in Rome, where thousands of Italians paid their respects to Mr. Calipari's body and his widow. "The Americans aren't telling the truth."

Corriere Italy (responding to Italian media accounts):

is it true, as the self-styled “Communist Daily” headline puts it, that the death of Nicola Calipari was a “preemptive” and therefore premeditated, homicide? Is it true, as Rossana Rossanda writes, that the Americans were shooting “to kill,” and that Calipari’s death was “an assassination?” Can we really subscribe to the picture painted by Ms Rossanda of arrogant Yankee roughnecks, beardless and/or whisky-soused, complying with the “American maxim, ‘shoot first, ask questions later?,’ and obeying without objection the order ‘when those Italians arrive, eliminate them’?” Must we really trust Giuliana Sgrena’s feelings when she tells us that her abductors were very probably right when they told her, “the Americans don’t want you to go back,” adding her own comment that they - the Americans again - “don’t want our work to show what Iraq has become with the war, despite the so-called elections.”

Der Spiegel:

Sgrena's kidnappers wanted, with the help of the journalist's dramatic appeal, to create a mood in Italy that would lead to the withdrawal of the country's troops,"....

"But they didn't succeed because Berlusconi remained firm." Ironically, and this part really is too bad: "The terrorists achieved an unexpected victory," it continues. "Calipari's death and the circumstances of the shooting of the journalist by American troops will create political damage in Europe and will foment the debate in Italy over withdrawing its troops."

Berliner Zitung:
"Mistrust of the American occupiers is appropriate," it writes. "Those who systematically break their own laws, subjecting prisoners in third countries to interrogation methods that no US court would permit, can't be surprised when people don't put it past them to still be hanging on to the Cold War policy of assassinating undesirable opponents."
For more on Sgrena's unimpeachable character see The Jawa Report's earlier post Giuliana Sgrena Admits to Helping Terrorists, Lies About Shooting

Jeff Goldstein chimes in, it is a must read. "And further, does anyone else not find it ironic that a card-carrying communist “reporter” who is a self-avowed anti-war, anti-American propagandist is being lauded by the European press—and many on the left here in the US—as an unimpeachable source?"

Jeff points me to this article, also a must read on the alliance between the Left and terrorists.

UPDATE:
New post is up on Giuliana Sgrena's Blood Libel Against the US which explores Sgrena's past anti-American utterances; including the accusation that the US was targetting journalists (said long before she was taken hostage), had used mustard gas on civilians, and tortured women in Iraq, and was complicit in the massacre of thousands in Afghanistan.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:05 PM | Comments |

Rusty Shackleford on Stanford Radio

I have an interview set up for the Shark Tank show on Stanford's KZSU 90.1 FM tomorrow from around 5:30-6:00 pm. You can listen live by going to their website here. No call-ins, but if you have a question you would like asked of me just e-mail kzsushark-at-yahoo.com.

Before I have to say this on the radio let me just admit here and now that my real name is John Guckert and I am a gay-prostitute who takes marching orders from KKKarl Rove.

UPDATE: MH King is on Kevin McCullough's show this afternoon.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:01 PM | Comments |

Caption Contest Winners

Vonski--"Yes, the infidels are right. This isn't as hot as the two Lesbianese chicks."

Jack M--"In an unprecidented display, the Arab Street protests Jada Pinkett Smith's "declaration of heteronormativity" by publicly going up each other's Assad's."

Brian Blazevic--"San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom illegally marries Ahwful Salahd and his two-dimensional "partner"."

*Winners chosen arbitrarily by me, that's why!!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:54 AM | Comments |

Giuliana Sgrena Admits to Helping Terrorists, Lies About Shooting (UPDATED)

Here is some of Sgrena's interview with the BBC. You be the judge:

--What did your captors tell you when you were hostage?

That I needed to help them to ask [Silvio] Berlusconi to withdraw the troops. They saw all what happens in Italy, demonstrations against the occupation, demonstrations for my liberation. And so they [became] aware that I was really working against the occupation and people were supporting me and so they told me: "We have seen that you are very appreciated in Italy". And that helped me to be freed.

--Tell us about the car journey you shared with him.

We were on our way to the airport when the tanks started to strike against us and he tried to cover me and he was shot. He died and, me, I was safe but he was dead. [Sgrena now changes her story. It was tanks that fired on the car?]

Editorial update---Check what Sgrena says in this account:
The Americans shone a flashlight at the car and then fired between 300 and 400 bullets at if from an armoured vehicle.
As Charles Johnson says it "Three hundred to four hundred rounds from an armored vehicle ... and there were survivors? OK, go ahead, pull my other leg." Update within an update: Digger notes that the Bonnie and Clyde car was shot about the same number of times but the bodies had 50 bullets in each. Compare that to the man who died. A single wound to the head.

Further, this contradiction from one story to another. BBC:

They started to shoot at us without any light or signal.
vs Guardian
The Americans shone a flashlight at the car and then fired.

More from Sgrena:

--Do you think it was deliberate?

I can't say it was deliberate because we can't say if there was a lack of information. But also a lack of information in this case is [their] responsibility because you are in a war field and you have the responsibility to pass immediately any information.

However, look at what Sgrena says here in her own publication (via Chad at In the Bullpen):
"Everyone knows that the Americans do not like negotiations to free hostages, and because of this I don't see why I should exclude the possibility of me having been the target," she said.

And writing in her left-wing Il Manifesto newspaper, she said upon her release her kidnappers warned her to be careful 'because there are Americans who don't want you to go back'."

Off to edumacate the masses. Will update later.

UPDATE: CNN translates Sgrena's Il Manifesto article (ht: Secure Liberty who got the link from Captain Ed):

I learned to understand what was going on by the behavior of my two guards, the two guards that had me under custody every day. One in particular showed much attention to my desires. He was incredibly cheerful. To understand exactly what was going on I provocatively asked him if he was happy because I was going or because I was staying. ...

I experienced a strange sensation because that word evoked in me freedom but also projected in me an immense sense of emptiness. I understood that it was the most difficult moment of my kidnapping and that if everything I had just experienced until then was "certain," now a huge vacuum of uncertainty was opening, one heavier than the other.

Sounds like your life was really threatened to me. The Italian people deserve to know if the $6 million spent (via Pirate's Cove) on her release came from private or public sources. How is spending that much money justified if she was not in any danger at any time? Further, the money will now be spent on IEDs and other devices which will lead to more death and destruction.

Sgrena's article continues:

They came back: "We'll take you and don't give any signals of your presence with us otherwise the Americans could intervene." It was confirmation that I didn't want to hear; it was altogether the most happy and most dangerous moment. If we bumped into someone, meaning American military, there would have been an exchange of fire. My captors were ready and would have answered. My eyes had to be covered. I was already getting used to momentary blindness.
Notice how she equivocates here? The terrorists would simply fire back....they were forced to put a blind fold on her...none of this is their fault...it is the fault of the Americans.
The car kept on the road, going under an underpass full of puddles and almost losing control to avoid them. We all incredibly laughed. It was liberating. Losing control of the car in a street full of water in Baghdad and maybe wind up in a bad car accident after all I had been through would really be a tale I would not be able to tell.
As Captain Ed rightly notes "So they drove through Baghdad fast enough to almost lose control of the car, never slowed down as they approached a checkpoint they knew to be ahead, and the "rain of gunfire and bullets" apparently only hit two of the three people in the car -- hardly likely if the intent was to assassinate everyone in the vehicle. "

Further, this Washington Times article says that the Italians deliberately kep the US in the dark on the whole thing.

They told me that we were less than a kilometer away...when...I only remember fire. At that point, a rain of fire and bullets hit us, shutting up forever the cheerful voices of a few minutes earlier.
This contradicts other versions of her story where she claims she knew they were not approaching a checkpoint.
The driver started yelling that we were Italians. "We are Italians, we are Italians." Nicola Calipari threw himself on me to protect me and immediately, I repeat, immediately I heard his last breath as he was dying on me. I must have felt physical pain. I didn't know why. But then I realized my mind went immediately to the things the captors had told me. They declared that they were committed to the fullest to freeing me but I had to be careful, "the Americans don't want you to go back." Then when they had told me I considered those words superfluous and ideological. At that moment they risked acquiring the flavor of the bitterest of truths, at this time I cannot tell you the rest.
Another admission of what Sgrena's paper has been saying all along. Sgena was deliberately shot by US troops to shut her up.

More on the "harsh conditions" of her captivity:

But the months that I spent in captivity probably changed forever my existence. One month alone with myself, prisoner of my profound certainties. Every hour was an impious verification of my work, sometimes they made fun of me, and they even stretch as far as asking why I wanted to leave, asking me stay. They insisted on personal relationships. It was them that made me think of the priorities that too often we cast aside.
Yeah, sounds like a real "life lesson". I think Wuzzadem sums up my thoughts on her "ordeal".

Here is another interesting exchange where Sgrena tells them they should be kidapping pro-war reporters and American troops, not a fuzzy loveable anti-American like herself:

"Yes because you go speak to the people, we would never [ed: meaning, can't] kidnap a journalist that remains closed in a hotel and because the fact that you say you're against the war could be a decoy." And I would answer almost to provoke them: "It's easy to kidnap a weak woman like me, why don't you try with the American military." I insisted on the fact that they could not ask the Italian government to withdraw the troops. Their political go-between could not be the government but the Italian people, who were and are against the war.
Ok, if Sgrena was really held 'hostage' how did she know where she was and how was it that she was able to describe what the roof of her 'prison' looked like?
Like when it was a first Sunday after the Friday they kidnapped me, in the house in Baghdad where I was kept, and on top of which was a satellite dish they showed me the Euronews Newscast.
Great. I wonder if she got ESPN, cause she might have just missed a few football games. Oh wait, her gentle captors also were fans of Italian football:
"Come watch a movie on TV" they would say while a Wahabi roamed around the house and took care of me. The captors seemed to me a very religious group, in continuous prayer on the Koran. But Friday, at the time of the release, the one that looked the most religious and who woke up every morning at 5 a.m. to pray incredibly congratulated me shaking my hand, a behavior unusual for an Islamic fundamentalist -- and he would add "if you behave yourself you will leave immediately." Then an almost funny incident. One of the two captors came to me surprised both because the TV was showing big posters of me in European cities and also for Totti. Yes Totti. He declared he was a fan of the Roma soccer team and he was shocked that his favorite player went to play with the writing "Liberate Giuliana" on his T-shirt.
And finally, from Cox and Forkum (via Confederate Yankee):

Another update: Michell Malkin finds this nugget:

"Don't believe a word of the U.S. version," said Oliviero Diliberto, secretary of the Italian Communist Party. "There's an attempt to mask what actually happened. The Americans deliberately fired on the Italians."
Another UPDATE:Paul at Wizbang has the DU reaction. No surprises there.

Because of the large numbers of trackbacks, I have not been able to check out what every one in the blogosphere is saying. Also, the man is keeping me down by making me do this thing called 'work'. If you have further Sgrena related info, it is better to e-mail me right now until things cool off.


UPDATE:
New post is up on Giuliana Sgrena's Blood Libel Against the US which explores Sgrena's past anti-American utterances; including the accusation that the US was targetting journalists (said long before she was taken hostage), had used mustard gas on civilians, and tortured women in Iraq, and was complicit in the massacre of thousands in Afghanistan.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:00 AM | Comments |

Sgrena Mia Culpa

After taking Sunday to think about this, let me do a couple of "take-backs."

I implied in this and an earlier post that the troops firing on Sgrena's vehicle was somehow part of Sgrena's bigger plan.

The accusation that this is wingnuttery are actually right-on. I'm embarassed that I made it. My apologies.

Now that would require some sort of conspiracy between Sgrena and the men who had negotiated for her freedom (at a price-tag of over $1 million from what we are now hearing.)

I feel stupid for having implied that such a conspiracy existed.

The most likely explanation is that Sgrena's driver simply did not follow orders to halt.

Now, why did Sgrena's driver not follow these orders?

Two hypothoses come to mind:

a) It was dark and the driver was confused about the identity of the soldiers mistaking them for insurgents

b) The driver believed the anti-American rhetoric of Sgrena and her likes. If the US is as Sgrena describes then why would you stop? Remember, for a large number of people in the world who watch al Jazeera or read left-wing newspaper's US soldiers are terrorists.

If the latter is true than the shooting incident becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Don't stop at an American chekcpoint because they shoot reporters. The reporters get shot because they don't stop at a US checkpoint.

However, for Sgrena to have been complicit in her own kidnapping requires no such grand conspiracy. It takes one reporter cooperating with the mujahadin council or other friends of the terrorist forces. That's it.

PS-Just to clarify I am apologizing for implying that the shooting was somehow part of a conspiracy to maker the US look bad.

I am not apologizing for earlier posts which alleged Sgrena was in no danger and may have been cooperating in her own captivity.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:14 AM | Comments |

March 05, 2005

Caption Contest

Caption this photo of two pro-Syrian demonstrators in Lebanon. Winners announced Monday.

I figure since every one else does caption contests. That, and since tomorrow is my Blog Sabbath why not give friends and readers something to do other than look at porn and stock quotes.

This photo has serious photoshop potential too.........

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 06:57 PM | Comments |

The Stone and the Sword: Nation-Building in Iraq

By Demosophist

I've been thinking lately about the process of nation-building in Iraq and elsewhere, under the difficult conditions imposed by a vicious terrorist insurgency. The prospects for the enterprise sometimes seem as likely as the quest for the Philosopher's Stone, the mythical device that was supposed to turn "dross into gold." Somehow the transfer of legitimacy from an occupying power to a new liberal democratic government, in a recently totalitarian society, seems just as implausible, and valuable. Recently I compared this bit of alchemy to a famous cycling contest, between American Lance Armstrong and Italian Marco Pantani, up the slopes of the bleak and legendary Mont Ventoux. Cycling is such a rich mix of competition and cooperation that it often supplies useful analogies for political processes, and this particular contest seemed appropriate because it involved an attempt by Armstrong to "render the victory" to another rider, in order to obtain cooperation of that rider's team in a larger strategy. The attempt was unsuccessful for a number of reasons.

In the context of establishing a new nation victories attributable that nation's fledgling military forces confer badly needed legitimacy on the new government. For instance, a critical turning point for the United States occurred when it defeated the British in the "Second American Revolution," during the War of 1812. (We don't emphasize the fact that our role in that war was rather minor, or that we experienced a number of ignoble defeats, as well as one astounding and unlikely victory.) But if this victory's contribution to the modest stock of political/social legitimacy of the new United States was so formative, imagine the "legitimacy problem" confronted by a nation that owes its very existence to an external liberating power. The cycling analogy works reasonably well as an introduction to the essential difficulty of passing legitimacy from a greater to a lesser power, but it fails, ironically, because it actually overstates the problem. In fact it remains useful as an analytical tool not so much because it's a good analogy, but because it fails in a relatively well-defined way. That failure focuses attention on some extremely important aspects of the nation-building process.

Although many of the differences between a bike race and a nation-building effort are obvious, they aren't necessarily non-trivial. It isn't especially important to the utility that one is a sporting event and the other a war strategy, because we already understand those implications well. It's enough that both are contests, with opponents and alliances. It's also not terribly important that one is a contest between individuals, and the other groups. Again, it's enough that both individuals and groups are capable of conflict as well as cooperation. But two aspects of the analogy bear significantly on the comparison: The definitive and brief nature of the finish, and the necessarily obvious proximity of the finishers.

First, the finish in a bike race, or almost any sort of sport race for that matter, is measured in hundredths or even thousandths of a second. It is therefore both definitive and brief in a way only slightly exceeded by ballistics analysis, computer electronics design, or advanced particle physics experimentation. More importantly, as the contestants approach the finish the subjective stakes for the riders and their supporters ramps like a tsunami approaching a shallow coastline. During the long climb up Mont Ventoux (an ascent so difficult it is considered "beyond categorization" or hors categorie) the interests of both cyclists are served cooperation as well as competition, because two riders of closely matched ability not only provide one another with incentive to give their best effort, but riding in a close line gives them a combined aerodynamic advantage not achieved by a lone rider. (This combined advantage diminishes at lower speeds typical of a steep climb for most mortals, but pro riders still climb at speeds where aerodynamic drag is a factor.) However, at the finish of Mont Ventoux after the long and arduous duel up the mountain and the abrupt approach of the denouement, it became nearly impossible to mollify Pantani's sense of disgrace when Armstrong relented at the last instant to allow the stage victory to the Italian. It was all too obvious to Pantani's fans, let alone the rider himself, that he was the inferior contestant on that day. The disgrace overwhelmed and spoiled any implied goodwill, and instead of inducing an alliance, as intended, the gesture turned sour. The Italian was livid, and vented furiously in the press the next day. He later dropped out of the race entirely. (Some have argued that this result was intended by Armstrong, but I see no evidence for that. Pantani was not competitive for the overall lead, and with his team he might easily have been a useful ally.)

Any attempt to similarly bequeath Iraqi victories must, therefore, avoid any hint of the sort of transparent gesture that enraged Pantani, because the "fans" of a new government are everything. If they see their new state as merely a puppet of the US, dependent on American support for its very survival, the new nation won't survive independently for very long. At best it will be a "hot house" colony. But if those who are ruled have faith in their government and its institutions, the nation may endure some very difficult trials on its own. Fortunately, unlike a sport race the finish of a nation-building effort is not only indeterminate but prolonged. It can drag on for months or years, and involves many turning points. It therefore offers "opportunities for alchemy."

Another important aspect of the bike race, for comparison, is that it was necessary for Armstrong to engineer a close stage finish in order to optimize his overall lead in the multi-stage tour, which was his real objective. A rider finishing a stage within what is considered the aerodynamic "wake" of a leading contestant receives the same time as the winner, and the overall lead for the multi-stage contest is entirely a matter of the time accumulated over many stages. This meant that the American could not afford to allow Pantani to take a sufficiently commanding lead that it would have been a convincing stage victory for him. (Nor would it have been useful to do so, for Armstrong.) Although Pantani was not a serious overall contender, others were. The Texan therefore had to finish in as brief a time as possible. Yet, if Pantani could manage to hang on or stay close, or better yet actually help, Lance wasn't averse to rewarding the cooperation by allowing the other rider to cross the line first, to stand on the winner's platform for a day. Ultimately, although some of these circumstances suggested the possibility of enlisting Pantani as an ally, others made such an objective extremely difficult, if not impossible. To work, the gesture had to be sufficiently obvious to be recognized by Pantani and his team, but not so palpable as to be, well... embarrassing. Armstrong has since stated that he will never again attempt such a gesture, and has not done so.

Again, what we're doing in Iraq is building a vanguard for democracy in the heart of the Arab Middle East in order to oppose the enemy's own vanguard. (For a good elucidation of the enemy's strategy see Mary Habek's Heritage Foundation lecture: Jihadist Strategies in the War on Terrorism, or the video archive of the same.) So maintaining an ally is a critical part of our objective, not merely a secondary opportunity. The last thing we want is to enrage or demoralize the new nation's "fans," or undermine their faith in the enterprise. But fortunately, unlike the contest between the Texan and the Italian, there is no real need for the US forces to cross the finish line at all. Our "reward" is the success of the new Iraqi nation, not our own. Our stock of legitimacy is rather substantial after more than 200 years. While it's true that we need to avoid the appearance of defeat in order to deter potential adversaries, there is no real need to claim the final stage of the military victory as our own. We can afford to let the Iraqis reap that reward convincingly.

The finish in Iraq will ultimately be governed by two interrelated trends. The first is the growing competence of the domestic security force together with public confidence in the national institutions it represents (including, in this case, the direct transfer of Ayatollah Sistani's personal charismatic legitimacy). The second is the waning capability and spoiling effort of the opposing insurgency, and if possible its catastrophic loss of legitimacy. Obviously this is a far more complex scenario than a bike race, but ironically it's not correspondingly more difficult to manage. In fact the very complexity of the scenario renders the task of nation-building somewhat more manageable. Furthermore, the two "finish trends" aren't quite mirror images in terms of predictability, and this can be turned to advantage as well.

While the two trends are related and similar, control of the learning curve for the defense forces (the police, National Guard, etc.) is far more reliable than the enemy's actions. The training of the domestic security force is characterized by relatively small or incremental day to day ups and downs, while the insurgent capability is characterized by relatively high variability, and corresponding uncertainty. Still, over time each trend will tend to be the inverse of the other. As the Iraqis become more competent the mujahadeen will become more stressed and less effective. At a certain point the frequency and intensity of the insurgency's attacks will become largely manageable by domestic security, assuming both a successful training program and military strategy/tactics. But the US role in achieving this result can remain largely obscured from the "fans" of the domestic force, ironically by the relative unpredictability of the insurgency's actions. The uncertainty of both its successes and failures are actually an advantage. We can think of the variability of the latter function or trend as providing a certain amount of "cover" for the transition, during which the precise role of the US contribution will become increasingly obscure. And victories obtained by the domestic force during this period provide the primary means of transferring legitimacy from the occupying force to the domestic force, and to the institutions of the new nation.

It is therefore the very uncertainty of asymmetric warfare, usually considered one of its primary strengths, that provides the most reliable means for the mystique-laden transfer of national legitimacy and the consolidation of sovereignty that is the core of this particular form of "alchemy." By gradually bringing the insurgency under control we are progressively employing the enemy's strengths against its own long term objectives. In a sense we are enlisting the enemy in the service of the ally, and it's precisely the advantage of this sort of practical irony that's the real "secret" behind the Philosopher's Stone's power.

By Demosophist at 06:55 PM | Comments | hors categorie) the interests of both cyclists are served cooperation as well as competition, because two riders of closely matched ability not only provide one another with incentive to give their best effort, but riding in a close line gives them a combined aerodynamic advantage not achieved by a lone rider. (This combined advantage diminishes at lower speeds typical of a steep climb for most mortals, but pro riders still climb at speeds where aerodynamic drag is a factor.) However, at the finish of Mont Ventoux after the long and arduous duel up the mountain and the abrupt approach of the denouement, it became nearly impossible to mollify Pantani's sense of disgrace when Armstrong relented at the last instant to allow the stage victory to the Italian. It was all too obvious to Pantani's fans, let alone the rider himself, that he was the inferior contestant on that day. The disgrace overwhelmed and spoiled any implied goodwill, and instead of inducing an alliance, as intended, the gesture turned sour. The Italian was livid, and vented furiously in the press the next day. He later dropped out of the race entirely. (Some have argued that this result was intended by Armstrong, but I see no evidence for that. Pantani was not competitive for the overall lead, and with his team he might easily have been a useful ally.) Any attempt to similarly bequeath Iraqi victories must, therefore, avoid any hint of the sort of transparent gesture that enraged Pantani, because the "fans" of a new government are everything. If they see their new state as merely a puppet of the US, dependent on American support for its very survival, the new nation won't survive independently for very long. At best it will be a "hot house" colony. But if those who are ruled have faith in their government and its institutions, the nation may endure some very difficult trials on its own. Fortunately, unlike a sport race the finish of a nation-building effort is not only indeterminate but prolonged. It can drag on for months or years, and involves many turning points. It therefore offers "opportunities for alchemy." Another important aspect of the bike race, for comparison, is that it was necessary for Armstrong to engineer a close stage finish in order to optimize his overall lead in the multi-stage tour, which was his real objective. A rider finishing a stage within what is considered the aerodynamic "wake" of a leading contestant receives the same time as the winner, and the overall lead for the multi-stage contest is entirely a matter of the time accumulated over many stages. This meant that the American could not afford to allow Pantani to take a sufficiently commanding lead that it would have been a convincing stage victory for him. (Nor would it have been useful to do so, for Armstrong.) Although Pantani was not a serious overall contender, others were. The Texan therefore had to finish in as brief a time as possible. Yet, if Pantani could manage to hang on or stay close, or better yet actually help, Lance wasn't averse to rewarding the cooperation by allowing the other rider to cross the line first, to stand on the winner's platform for a day. Ultimately, although some of these circumstances suggested the possibility of enlisting Pantani as an ally, others made such an objective extremely difficult, if not impossible. To work, the gesture had to be sufficiently obvious to be recognized by Pantani and his team, but not so palpable as to be, well... embarrassing. Armstrong has since stated that he will never again attempt such a gesture, and has not done so. Again, what we're doing in Iraq is building a vanguard for democracy in the heart of the Arab Middle East in order to oppose the enemy's own vanguard. (For a good elucidation of the enemy's strategy see Mary Habek's Heritage Foundation lecture: Jihadist Strategies in the War on Terrorism, or the video archive of the same.) So maintaining an ally is a critical part of our objective, not merely a secondary opportunity. The last thing we want is to enrage or demoralize the new nation's "fans," or undermine their faith in the enterprise. But fortunately, unlike the contest between the Texan and the Italian, there is no real need for the US forces to cross the finish line at all. Our "reward" is the success of the new Iraqi nation, not our own. Our stock of legitimacy is rather substantial after more than 200 years. While it's true that we need to avoid the appearance of defeat in order to deter potential adversaries, there is no real need to claim the final stage of the military victory as our own. We can afford to let the Iraqis reap that reward convincingly. The finish in Iraq will ultimately be governed by two interrelated trends. The first is the growing competence of the domestic security force together with public confidence in the national institutions it represents (including, in this case, the direct transfer of Ayatollah Sistani's personal charismatic legitimacy). The second is the waning capability and spoiling effort of the opposing insurgency, and if possible its catastrophic loss of legitimacy. Obviously this is a far more complex scenario than a bike race, but ironically it's not correspondingly more difficult to manage. In fact the very complexity of the scenario renders the task of nation-building somewhat more manageable. Furthermore, the two "finish trends" aren't quite mirror images in terms of predictability, and this can be turned to advantage as well. While the two trends are related and similar, control of the learning curve for the defense forces (the police, National Guard, etc.) is far more reliable than the enemy's actions. The training of the domestic security force is characterized by relatively small or incremental day to day ups and downs, while the insurgent capability is characterized by relatively high variability, and corresponding uncertainty. Still, over time each trend will tend to be the inverse of the other. As the Iraqis become more competent the mujahadeen will become more stressed and less effective. At a certain point the frequency and intensity of the insurgency's attacks will become largely manageable by domestic security, assuming both a successful training program and military strategy/tactics. But the US role in achieving this result can remain largely obscured from the "fans" of the domestic force, ironically by the relative unpredictability of the insurgency's actions. The uncertainty of both its successes and failures are actually an advantage. We can think of the variability of the latter function or trend as providing a certain amount of "cover" for the transition, during which the precise role of the US contribution will become increasingly obscure. And victories obtained by the domestic force during this period provide the primary means of transferring legitimacy from the occupying force to the domestic force, and to the institutions of the new nation. It is therefore the very uncertainty of asymmetric warfare, usually considered one of its primary strengths, that provides the most reliable means for the mystique-laden transfer of national legitimacy and the consolidation of sovereignty that is the core of this particular form of "alchemy." By gradually bringing the insurgency under control we are progressively employing the enemy's strengths against its own long term objectives. In a sense we are enlisting the enemy in the service of the ally, and it's precisely the advantage of this sort of practical irony that's the real "secret" behind the Philosopher's Stone's power. (Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and The Jawa Report)">hors categorie) the interests of both cyclists are served cooperation as well as competition, because two riders of closely matched ability not only provide one another with incentive to give their best effort, but riding in a close line gives them a combined aerodynamic advantage not achieved by a lone rider. (This combined advantage diminishes at lower speeds typical of a steep climb for most mortals, but pro riders still climb at speeds where aerodynamic drag is a factor.) However, at the finish of Mont Ventoux after the long and arduous duel up the mountain and the abrupt approach of the denouement, it became nearly impossible to mollify Pantani's sense of disgrace when Armstrong relented at the last instant to allow the stage victory to the Italian. It was all too obvious to Pantani's fans, let alone the rider himself, that he was the inferior contestant on that day. The disgrace overwhelmed and spoiled any implied goodwill, and instead of inducing an alliance, as intended, the gesture turned sour. The Italian was livid, and vented furiously in the press the next day. He later dropped out of the race entirely. (Some have argued that this result was intended by Armstrong, but I see no evidence for that. Pantani was not competitive for the overall lead, and with his team he might easily have been a useful ally.) Any attempt to similarly bequeath Iraqi victories must, therefore, avoid any hint of the sort of transparent gesture that enraged Pantani, because the "fans" of a new government are everything. If they see their new state as merely a puppet of the US, dependent on American support for its very survival, the new nation won't survive independently for very long. At best it will be a "hot house" colony. But if those who are ruled have faith in their government and its institutions, the nation may endure some very difficult trials on its own. Fortunately, unlike a sport race the finish of a nation-building effort is not only indeterminate but prolonged. It can drag on for months or years, and involves many turning points. It therefore offers "opportunities for alchemy." Another important aspect of the bike race, for comparison, is that it was necessary for Armstrong to engineer a close stage finish in order to optimize his overall lead in the multi-stage tour, which was his real objective. A rider finishing a stage within what is considered the aerodynamic "wake" of a leading contestant receives the same time as the winner, and the overall lead for the multi-stage contest is entirely a matter of the time accumulated over many stages. This meant that the American could not afford to allow Pantani to take a sufficiently commanding lead that it would have been a convincing stage victory for him. (Nor would it have been useful to do so, for Armstrong.) Although Pantani was not a serious overall contender, others were. The Texan therefore had to finish in as brief a time as possible. Yet, if Pantani could manage to hang on or stay close, or better yet actually help, Lance wasn't averse to rewarding the cooperation by allowing the other rider to cross the line first, to stand on the winner's platform for a day. Ultimately, although some of these circumstances suggested the possibility of enlisting Pantani as an ally, others made such an objective extremely difficult, if not impossible. To work, the gesture had to be sufficiently obvious to be recognized by Pantani and his team, but not so palpable as to be, well... embarrassing. Armstrong has since stated that he will never again attempt such a gesture, and has not done so. Again, what we're doing in Iraq is building a vanguard for democracy in the heart of the Arab Middle East in order to oppose the enemy's own vanguard. (For a good elucidation of the enemy's strategy see Mary Habek's Heritage Foundation lecture: Jihadist Strategies in the War on Terrorism, or the video archive of the same.) So maintaining an ally is a critical part of our objective, not merely a secondary opportunity. The last thing we want is to enrage or demoralize the new nation's "fans," or undermine their faith in the enterprise. But fortunately, unlike the contest between the Texan and the Italian, there is no real need for the US forces to cross the finish line at all. Our "reward" is the success of the new Iraqi nation, not our own. Our stock of legitimacy is rather substantial after more than 200 years. While it's true that we need to avoid the appearance of defeat in order to deter potential adversaries, there is no real need to claim the final stage of the military victory as our own. We can afford to let the Iraqis reap that reward convincingly. The finish in Iraq will ultimately be governed by two interrelated trends. The first is the growing competence of the domestic security force together with public confidence in the national institutions it represents (including, in this case, the direct transfer of Ayatollah Sistani's personal charismatic legitimacy). The second is the waning capability and spoiling effort of the opposing insurgency, and if possible its catastrophic loss of legitimacy. Obviously this is a far more complex scenario than a bike race, but ironically it's not correspondingly more difficult to manage. In fact the very complexity of the scenario renders the task of nation-building somewhat more manageable. Furthermore, the two "finish trends" aren't quite mirror images in terms of predictability, and this can be turned to advantage as well. While the two trends are related and similar, control of the learning curve for the defense forces (the police, National Guard, etc.) is far more reliable than the enemy's actions. The training of the domestic security force is characterized by relatively small or incremental day to day ups and downs, while the insurgent capability is characterized by relatively high variability, and corresponding uncertainty. Still, over time each trend will tend to be the inverse of the other. As the Iraqis become more competent the mujahadeen will become more stressed and less effective. At a certain point the frequency and intensity of the insurgency's attacks will become largely manageable by domestic security, assuming both a successful training program and military strategy/tactics. But the US role in achieving this result can remain largely obscured from the "fans" of the domestic force, ironically by the relative unpredictability of the insurgency's actions. The uncertainty of both its successes and failures are actually an advantage. We can think of the variability of the latter function or trend as providing a certain amount of "cover" for the transition, during which the precise role of the US contribution will become increasingly obscure. And victories obtained by the domestic force during this period provide the primary means of transferring legitimacy from the occupying force to the domestic force, and to the institutions of the new nation. It is therefore the very uncertainty of asymmetric warfare, usually considered one of its primary strengths, that provides the most reliable means for the mystique-laden transfer of national legitimacy and the consolidation of sovereignty that is the core of this particular form of "alchemy." By gradually bringing the insurgency under control we are progressively employing the enemy's strengths against its own long term objectives. In a sense we are enlisting the enemy in the service of the ally, and it's precisely the advantage of this sort of practical irony that's the real "secret" behind the Philosopher's Stone's power. (Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and The Jawa Report)">hors categorie) the interests of both cyclists are served cooperation as well as competition, because two riders of closely matched ability not only provide one another with incentive to give their best effort, but riding in a close line gives them a combined aerodynamic advantage not achieved by a lone rider. (This combined advantage diminishes at lower speeds typical of a steep climb for most mortals, but pro riders still climb at speeds where aerodynamic drag is a factor.) However, at the finish of Mont Ventoux after the long and arduous duel up the mountain and the abrupt approach of the denouement, it became nearly impossible to mollify Pantani's sense of disgrace when Armstrong relented at the last instant to allow the stage victory to the Italian. It was all too obvious to Pantani's fans, let alone the rider himself, that he was the inferior contestant on that day. The disgrace overwhelmed and spoiled any implied goodwill, and instead of inducing an alliance, as intended, the gesture turned sour. The Italian was livid, and vented furiously in the press the next day. He later dropped out of the race entirely. (Some have argued that this result was intended by Armstrong, but I see no evidence for that. Pantani was not competitive for the overall lead, and with his team he might easily have been a useful ally.) Any attempt to similarly bequeath Iraqi victories must, therefore, avoid any hint of the sort of transparent gesture that enraged Pantani, because the "fans" of a new government are everything. If they see their new state as merely a puppet of the US, dependent on American support for its very survival, the new nation won't survive independently for very long. At best it will be a "hot house" colony. But if those who are ruled have faith in their government and its institutions, the nation may endure some very difficult trials on its own. Fortunately, unlike a sport race the finish of a nation-building effort is not only indeterminate but prolonged. It can drag on for months or years, and involves many turning points. It therefore offers "opportunities for alchemy." Another important aspect of the bike race, for comparison, is that it was necessary for Armstrong to engineer a close stage finish in order to optimize his overall lead in the multi-stage tour, which was his real objective. A rider finishing a stage within what is considered the aerodynamic "wake" of a leading contestant receives the same time as the winner, and the overall lead for the multi-stage contest is entirely a matter of the time accumulated over many stages. This meant that the American could not afford to allow Pantani to take a sufficiently commanding lead that it would have been a convincing stage victory for him. (Nor would it have been useful to do so, for Armstrong.) Although Pantani was not a serious overall contender, others were. The Texan therefore had to finish in as brief a time as possible. Yet, if Pantani could manage to hang on or stay close, or better yet actually help, Lance wasn't averse to rewarding the cooperation by allowing the other rider to cross the line first, to stand on the winner's platform for a day. Ultimately, although some of these circumstances suggested the possibility of enlisting Pantani as an ally, others made such an objective extremely difficult, if not impossible. To work, the gesture had to be sufficiently obvious to be recognized by Pantani and his team, but not so palpable as to be, well... embarrassing. Armstrong has since stated that he will never again attempt such a gesture, and has not done so. Again, what we're doing in Iraq is building a vanguard for democracy in the heart of the Arab Middle East in order to oppose the enemy's own vanguard. (For a good elucidation of the enemy's strategy see Mary Habek's Heritage Foundation lecture: Jihadist Strategies in the War on Terrorism, or the video archive of the same.) So maintaining an ally is a critical part of our objective, not merely a secondary opportunity. The last thing we want is to enrage or demoralize the new nation's "fans," or undermine their faith in the enterprise. But fortunately, unlike the contest between the Texan and the Italian, there is no real need for the US forces to cross the finish line at all. Our "reward" is the success of the new Iraqi nation, not our own. Our stock of legitimacy is rather substantial after more than 200 years. While it's true that we need to avoid the appearance of defeat in order to deter potential adversaries, there is no real need to claim the final stage of the military victory as our own. We can afford to let the Iraqis reap that reward convincingly. The finish in Iraq will ultimately be governed by two interrelated trends. The first is the growing competence of the domestic security force together with public confidence in the national institutions it represents (including, in this case, the direct transfer of Ayatollah Sistani's personal charismatic legitimacy). The second is the waning capability and spoiling effort of the opposing insurgency, and if possible its catastrophic loss of legitimacy. Obviously this is a far more complex scenario than a bike race, but ironically it's not correspondingly more difficult to manage. In fact the very complexity of the scenario renders the task of nation-building somewhat more manageable. Furthermore, the two "finish trends" aren't quite mirror images in terms of predictability, and this can be turned to advantage as well. While the two trends are related and similar, control of the learning curve for the defense forces (the police, National Guard, etc.) is far more reliable than the enemy's actions. The training of the domestic security force is characterized by relatively small or incremental day to day ups and downs, while the insurgent capability is characterized by relatively high variability, and corresponding uncertainty. Still, over time each trend will tend to be the inverse of the other. As the Iraqis become more competent the mujahadeen will become more stressed and less effective. At a certain point the frequency and intensity of the insurgency's attacks will become largely manageable by domestic security, assuming both a successful training program and military strategy/tactics. But the US role in achieving this result can remain largely obscured from the "fans" of the domestic force, ironically by the relative unpredictability of the insurgency's actions. The uncertainty of both its successes and failures are actually an advantage. We can think of the variability of the latter function or trend as providing a certain amount of "cover" for the transition, during which the precise role of the US contribution will become increasingly obscure. And victories obtained by the domestic force during this period provide the primary means of transferring legitimacy from the occupying force to the domestic force, and to the institutions of the new nation. It is therefore the very uncertainty of asymmetric warfare, usually considered one of its primary strengths, that provides the most reliable means for the mystique-laden transfer of national legitimacy and the consolidation of sovereignty that is the core of this particular form of "alchemy." By gradually bringing the insurgency under control we are progressively employing the enemy's strengths against its own long term objectives. In a sense we are enlisting the enemy in the service of the ally, and it's precisely the advantage of this sort of practical irony that's the real "secret" behind the Philosopher's Stone's power. (Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia and The Jawa Report)">

Note to Readers on Commenting

Due to the overwhelming number of comments on recent posts we are unable to moderate at this time. Please feel free to e-mail Rusty Shackleford (see left sidebar) if you have any news tips, suggestions, or personal comments. Sorry--a little busy.

Oh, yes we have a problem with the comments remembering info. The only fix that we could find, so far, is that commenting will remember your info but only if you click on "comments" from the main page. If you try to comment from an archive page, you will have to retype your info each time.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 06:41 PM | Comments |

Four Bodies Found in Iraq May be Westerners'

A shallow grave has turned up what appears to be the body of Westerners. In the past these reports have sometimes turned out to be wrong.

The reporter makes a few mistakes when listing the hostages and the inference that the could belong to any one of them. For instance, 'Sadeq Mohamed Sadeq' is likely 'Dean Sadek' as he is an immigrant and 'Dean' is probably his 'American' name. Also, we know the bodies can't be those of either Sadek or Roy Hallums since the grave was allegedly first found in September.

A video showing Dean Sadek was released last November on al Jazeera and Roy Hallums was not taken hostage until November of last year. Since we know Roy's family checks in with us from time to time this will be reassuring for them to hear.

Neither would the body likely be that of Army Pfc. Keith Maupin as the remains are described as wearing civilian clothes.

Interestingly, the report mentions one hostage that we have not heard about before Kirk von Ackermann, a contractor.

Newhouse:

A series of shallow graves found in southern Iraq over the weekend appeared to contain the remains of four Western civilians, a spokesman for the National Guard said this week.

The victims appeared to have been executed, said Oregon Guard Maj. Arnold Strong.

"They found a polo shirt that had eight bullet holes in the back and lots of bloodstains," Strong said in a telephone interview Wednesday from Taji Camp, a U.S. Army base north of Baghdad.....

But the soldiers who found them believe they were from Western countries, Strong said, based on the condition of the teeth and on the clothing, including the polo shirt and Levi's 501 jeans.

An Iraqi informant alerted the U.S. military to the location of the remains. The informant claimed to have seen the bodies in September in "fresher condition" and believed they either were American or British based on their clothing and hair color, Strong said.

If so, this would be a stunning find. Seven Americans and a handful of civilians from other Western countries appear on lists of missing foreigners in Iraq.

Among those reported missing are Army Pfc. Keith Maupin; Timothy Bell, a contract employee with Halliburton; Dean Sadek, a manager at the Baghdad airport; Roy Hallum, a contractor who was working for a Saudi firm; Sadeq Mohammed Sadeq, a Lebanese-American contractor; Aban Elias, an Iraqi-American engineer; and Kirk von Ackermann, a contractor.

Hat tip: See-Dubya

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 06:21 PM | Comments |

New Zarqawi Photos

CNN claims to have new photos of Abu Musab Zarqawi. If you see this man, please kill him. More pics below.

via Free Thoughts

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:58 PM | Comments |

The Great Giuliana Sgrena Hostage Hoax

Update March 07: I have a new posts following the Sgrena story "Giuliana Sgrena Admits to Helping Terrorists, Lies About Shooting".

Suspicion continues to mount that Giuliana Sgrena, the journalist for the Italian Communist paper Il Manifesto, either faked her own abduction or became an accomplice after the fact with her jihadi captors.

Today Giuliana Sgrena told her version of the dramatic story contradicting US military claims that her car was fired upon when it failed to slow down at a Coalition check point. Bloomberg:

``It wasn't a checkpoint, but a patrol that started shooting after pointing some lights in our direction,'' the Ansa news agency cited Sgrena as telling the prosecutors. ``We hadn't previously encountered any checkpoint and we didn't understand where the shots came from.''
As if on cue, Sgrena then goes on to say what we at The Jawa Report had been predicting she would say all along:
``I was never treated badly,'' Sgrena told her colleagues at Manifesto upon her arrival in Rome, according to Ansa.
The Italian left-wing, as predicted, has siezed upon Sgrena's ordeal today. The headline at Sgrena's own Communist paper shouts the headline that the Italian secret-service agent who had negotiated her release had been "Assassinated" by America.

UPDATE: NPR now reports that an anti-war rally is planned to celebrate Sgrena's release.

The Jawa Report has been predicting from day one that Sgrena would be released unharmed, and that on her release she would blame the US for her ordeal. The fact that her driver did not stop at a US checkpoint on a road scattered with checkpoints is more than a little odd--it is canny.

How does a driver in Iraq not know that the rules of engagement for Coalition forces are to fire upon any car which does not stop when ordered to?

While the Italian people wish to know why the US fired upon Sgrena, we in the US want to know why it was the Sgrena's car did not stop when ordered to do so?

Sgrena, continues her anti-Amricanism (Reuters):

"We thought the danger was over after my release to the Italians but all of a sudden there was this shoot-out, we were hit by a barrage of bullets," she told RAI TV by telephone.

Nicola Calipari, the senior secret service agent who had worked for her release, was telling her about what had been going on in Italy since her capture when the shooting started.

"He leaned over me, probably to protect me, and then he slumped down, and I saw he was dead," said Sgrena.

Doesn't this whole incident seem more than a little odd?

Sgena was kidnapped by her admitted friends in Iraq.

She was kidnapped while on the phone with another journalist.

A tape was released of her begging Italy to cave to the terrorists demands of pulling Italian troops out of Iraq the day before the Italian Senate was to vote on that very issue.

On the tape Sgrena appears to tell the 'terrorist' holding the camera to stop. He follows her order as if she is directing.

The tape came exactly two-weeks after she was captured.

One month to the day after her abduction she is released.

On the day of her release her car speeds toward a US checkpoint, fails to stop when ordered, fails to heed warning shots, and the car is ultimately fired upon.

In the end, who looks like the bad guys? The terrorists? The jihadis? The 'insurgents'? No, the US.

And what possible motivation, as I am frequently asked, might Sgrena have in being complicit in this whole thing?

Wired:

"I don't believe a word of the American version," said Oliviero Diliberto, head of the Italian Communist party, part of the main left-wing block led byformer premier Romano Prodi.

"The Americans deliberately fired on Italians. This is huge. All of the center-left must vote in parliament for the withdrawal of our troops."

If one actually believes in the Left-wing version of the world than aiding Michael Moore's 'Minuteman' is not only the right thing to do, but a moral imperetive. Sgrena holds the world-view, as evidenced in her body of journalistic work, that America is the cause of all the problems in the world. She believes the US is exactly as Ward Churchill describes it. America is just like Nazi Germany.

And Iraq? Iraq is an imperialistic move motivated by greed, the desire for hegemeny, and to bolster the Zionist-imperialists in Palestine. Iraq has been a blood-bath with tens of thousands of children dying so that the US could gain control over Mideast oil.

Normally we don't go in for conspiracy theories. We hate them. We despise them. But the speculation that Sgrena collaborated with the 'minutemen' of Iraq in demanding that Italy withdraw from that country does not involve layer upon layer of cover-up. It requires a few people, none of them working in an official government capacity.

Remember Benjamin Vanderford or John Adam?

And if you really believed all that the Left says about the US in Iraq, wouldn't it be your duty to fight the occupation? And if it is morally acceptable to kill in that resistance then surely the lesser crime of lying is also acceptable.

Guliana Sgrena, you are a liar and a propagandist. Why should we trust you now?

UPDATE: I oringinally wrote this from my 28k connection at home and have corrected some of it.

This is speculation and I could be wrong. Speculation, though, is the foundation for any hypothesis testing. I hope Italian and US investigators do not simply take this enemy propagandists word for it. In my book, she is every bit a suspect as she is a victim.

Jeff Goldstein adds his two-cents here.

Let me also remind readers that Sgrena's car was shot at night. The DU is now filled with posters claiming Sgrena was shot because "she was brown, like the Iraqis" or that "the US will shoot any brown person".

The soldiers could not have known who was in the car. They had no idea a hostile journalist was in the car (sorry Eason Jordan, your hypothesis doesn't wash) and they could have had no idea there was a 'brown person' in the car (sorry DU and Ward Churchill)

UPDATE: Let me clarify a few points responding to comments.

1) Nobody is accusing the Italian secret-service to have been in on this. No one is saying that a giant conspiracy exists. What we are saying is that Sgrena was amongst friends if her hostage takers were terrorists. That a ransom was paid makes Italy a victim, not a co-conspirator.

2) When the word of a propagandist is pitted against the word of a US soldier, I am inclined to believe that of the soldier.

3) If the speculation that the whole thing was a hoax is wrong, so be it. However, ample evidence exists that Sgrena was really in no danger if it was jihadis responsible for her kidnapping. If however the kidnappers were simple criminals, then all this is wrong.

UPDATE March 07: After taking Sunday to think about this, let me do a couple of "take-backs."

I implied in this and an earlier post that the troops firing on Sgrena's vehicle was somehow part of Sgrena's bigger plan. The accusation that this is wingnuttery are actually right-on. Now that would require some sort of conspiracy between Sgrena and the men who had negotiated for her freedom (at a price-tag of over $1 million from what we are now hearing.

I feel stupid for having implied that such a conspiracy existed.

The most likely explanation is that Sgrena's driver simply did not follow orders to halt.

Now, why did Sgrena's driver not follow these orders?

Two hypothoses come to mind:

a) It was dark and the driver was confused about the identity of the soldiers mistaking them for insurgents

b) The driver believed the anti-American rhetoric of Sgrena and her likes. If the US is as Sgrena describes then why would you stop? Remember, for a large number of people in the world who watch al Jazeera or read left-wing newspaper's US soldiers are terrorists.

If the latter is true than the shooting incident becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Don't stop at an American chekcpoint because they shoot reporters. The reporters get shot because they don't stop at a US checkpoint.

However, for Sgrena to have been complicit in her own kidnapping requires no such grand conspiracy. It takes one reporter cooperating with the mujahadin council. That's it.

------------------------------
From an earlier post to remind readers of why this whole thing has been suspicious from the beginning:

First, she was abducted while conducting interviews with refugees from Fallujah in Baghdad. Having read some of Sgrena's work in the past, there is very little doubt that the emphasis of the story would be on the horrors inflicted on that city by the American troops. Ms. Sgrena is an anti-war activist with journalistic credentials.

Second, she just happened to be on the phone with another journalist Barbara Schiavulliduring the abduction. Ms. Schiavulli recently interviewed the terrorist Abu Abid in the Gaza strip. Today, Schiavulli received this mysterious phone call. Reuters:

A friend of Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena, who was kidnapped in Baghdad on Friday, received a call on Saturday from Sgrena's telephone but it was unclear who was at the other end of the line. Barbara Schiavulli, a correspondent for Italian radio news agency GRT, saw Sgrena's number appear on her telephone screen but when she answered she heard only Arab music and no one spoke, an editor at GRT in Rome said.

"The call lasted only a short moment and then the line was cut off. Barbara tried to call back but she couldn't get through. It was impossible to know if the call was intentional or if it was an accident," Simona D'Alessio told Reuters.


Then there is this report that two Iraqis working with Ms. Sgrena are being held by the police. News 24:
Iraqi police are holding two companions of kidnapped Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena for questioning about her abduction, officials said Saturday.

Interior Ministry official Sabah Khazim said that the two were held for questioning "so that we can have a clear idea about the circumstances of the abduction of the Italian journalist and they will be released soon".

Colonel Adnan Abdul Rahman, another Interior Ministry official, said authorities wanted to gather as many details as possible from the two.

The officials would not identify the pair but sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said they included her driver and interpreter.

There is also the generic name of the terrorist group said to be holding Sgrena, The Islamic Jihad Organization.

From Ms. Sgrena's history two things become clear. One, she has a long history of opposing U.S. military force and chooses to emphasize the innocent casualties of war rather than the innocent casualties of the evil regimes these wars topple. Two, her anti-war focus brings her into close proximity with terrorists and their sympathizers.

What kind of people, exactly, did Giuliana Sgrena think she was hanging around with? Unlike hostages such as American Roy Hallums or Italian reporter Enzo Baldoni, Sgrena was not in Iraq to help with reconstruction and abducted from her home. She was interviewing people who think that the Americans were the bad guys.

The leftist world-view is unified by only one theme: America is the bad guy. When seen from this view then it is perfectly logical to see terrorists in Iraq as 'partisans' or 'resistance fighters'. Sgrena seems to be the victim of her own naivity about those who are resisting America's efforts to build a democratic Iraq. Or worse.

Could her own sympathies with the 'resistance' lead her to stage her own abduction? The coming weeks will tell.

More on Sgrena from the pro-terrorist al Jazeera:

Giuliana Sgrena, 56, a veteran Middle East correspondent for the leftist Il Manifesto daily...
Within hours, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said talks had begun to try to secure her release, as the so-called Islamic Jihad Organisation handed him a chilling 72-hour deadline to pull his 3000 troops out of Iraq.

"The negotiating machinery has been set in motion," Berlusconi told a meeting of his ruling party, Forza Italia, hoping that it would be possible "to achieve a solution quickly". ...

Sent to Baghdad to cover Sunday's elections, Sgrena was described by colleagues as an Arabic-speaking feminist with a passionate interest in Islam...

"Giuliana is petite, reserved and the complete opposite of what you'd image a war correspondent to be, but she fears nothing," said her editor Loris Campetti.

"She has very good contacts in Baghdad, including with the ulamas [Muslim clergy], and is against the war, in keeping with the Manifesto line. She was never embedded and wrote very personal and documented reports."


UPDATE:
New post is up on Giuliana Sgrena's Blood Libel Against the US which explores Sgrena's past anti-American utterances; including the accusation that the US was targetting journalists (said long before she was taken hostage), had used napalm on civilians, and tortured women in Iraq, and was complicit in the massacre of thousands in Afghanistan. She even implies that the US has used nuclear weapons in Iraq.

Related stories from The Jawa Report:
Italian Hostage Released, Shot by US Forces (DU says Eason Jordan vindicated)
Italian Woman Taken Hostage in Iraq (Updated)
Italian Hostage: Hoax or the Fruits of anti-American Activism?
Italian Hostage Hoax: Terrorists to Release Giuliana Sgrena
Giuliana Sgrena Alive and Well
Italian Hostage Video Released (UPDATE)
Italians Lobby for Release of Hostage by Calling for End to Occupation
Iraqi Minister Claims Italian Hostage Release Imminent

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:28 PM | Comments |

March 04, 2005

Italian Hostage Released, Shot by US Forces (DU says Eason Jordan vindicated)

Giuliana Sgrena, the female Italian hostage held in Iraq since Feb. 4th, has been freed. The Communist daily Il Manifesto has reported that the Italian secret-service had notified them of their employee's release. Update: Sgrena was wounded as her driver sped toward a US checkpoint near the Baghdad airport. Do not believe MSM reports on this as they are all being fed information through the Communist Il Manifesto.

Sgrena's vehicle was warned to stop but continued speeding toward a US checkpoint on a road which has been the scene of frequent terrorist attacks. US soldiers signaled for the car to stop, flashed lights at it, and then fired warning shots at the vehicle before opening fire on the car. The troops then shot the car's engine block, not the passengers. The car spun out of control. It was the car accident which killed one occupant and wounded Sgrena. UPDATE: Apprently Sgena did suffer a shrapenal wound, but this is consistent with the soldier's version of the story that the engine block was shot which would cause metal debris.
-----
Reuters reports that an Italian Foreign Ministry spokesperson says, "I can confirm it 100 percent. She should board a plane in the coming hours and should be back in Rome later tonight."

Scroll down for updates and world reaction....(Update: be sure to scroll down and see DU reaction--Eason Jordan vindicated!)

The Jawa Report has been assuring readers from the beginning that Sgrena would be releaed unharmed. Sgrena was an anti-American reporter in Iraq to bolster the terrorist insurgency. She was abducted while interviewing refugees from the battle of Fallujah who were camped outside a Sunni mosque near Baghdad University. Il Manifesto has reported in the past that Sgrena was close to radical anti-occupation clerics. Update: Not that we're questioning the timing (as Ace implies) but Chad Evans just e-mailed me noting that Sgrena had been released exactly one month after being captured.

Update: Leftist media already blaming US of interfering with hostage release, as if stopping at US checkpoint was more dangerous than, say, her time with the alleged terrorists. London Times:

Ms Sgrena was wounded when US troops opened fire on a convoy carrying her to safety, and an Italian negotiator who help negotiate her release was killed, her newspaper Il Manifesto said.
What Il Manifesto forgets to mention is that Sgrena was taken by the evil American forces to a US Army hospital for treatment. Right, very unafe.

UPDATE: "I've driven that road to [Baghdad International Airport] many times and everyone knows that Big Army does not tolerate being ridden up on suddenly or at a high rate of speed." *

AP:

"Multinational forces fired on a vehicle that was approaching a coalition checkpoint in Baghdad at a high rate of speed," Defense Department spokesman Bryan Whitman told reporters.

"The recently freed Italian journalist was an occupant in the vehicle and was apparently injured. Though details are unclear at this point, it appears that a second person in the automobile was killed," Whitman added.

The incident is under investigation, he said.

In Rome, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi called on the United States to explain how U.S. forces in Iraq (news - web sites) had killed an Italian agent and someone had to take responsibility for the shooting.

Responsibility? How about placing it on the idiot trying to speed passed a roadblock set up by the Coalition and manned by soldiers with 50 caliber guns on their humvees!! Eason Jordan, eat your heart out.

Another VERY CRITICAL Update within an UPDATE 3:57 P.M: The early reports left out some very critical information out of the military press release:

U.S. troops "attempted to warn the driver to stop by hand and arm signals, flashing white lights, and firing warning shots in front of the car," the statement said. "When the driver didn't stop, the soldiers shot into the engine block, which stopped the vehicle, killing one and wounding two others."
Read--US forces shot the car, but it was the speed of the car which crashed which killed one passenger and wounded Sgrena!

Developing......updates are continious.

Update: Al Reuters, in a move sure to make al Jazeera rethink its wording, blames lawlessness [read: blame US] for Sgrena's and the other hostages plight. No culpability is placed on the terrorists:

More than 150 foreigners, including several Western journalists, have been seized by insurgents over the past year. Most have been freed but many have been killed -- sometimes in beheadings that were filmed and posted on the Internet.

The kidnappings have highlighted the lawlessness gripping large areas of Iraq where insurgents mount frequent attacks, crime is rife and Iraqi forces have little control.

Al Jazeera, not to be undone by Leftist European media, now headlining that Sgrena was shot by US forces. The story features an image of Sgrena holding a pie. You heard me right, a freaking pie!!!

Update within an update: Al Reuters, in a race with al Jazeera to see which publication can be the most blatently anti-American now runs with this headline: US forces kill Italian agent after reporter freed and reporting Il Manifesto as saying:

"An Italian agent has been killed by an American bullet. A tragic demonstration which we never wanted that everything that's happening in Iraq is completely senseless and mad," he added, struggling to fight back his tears."
It has begun. Seriously, it is scary just how predictable the media reaction would be.

UPDATE: A word of caution. All reports about Sgrena to date have been carefully routed through her Communist newspaper, Il Manifesto. If you check the media reports you will notice that each is receiving its information from a single source, the anti-American editor of Il Manifesto.

Al Jazeera:

Italian journalist Giuliana Sgrena, who was abducted in Baghdad on 4 February, has been freed, Aljazeera has reported....

Il Manifesto strongly opposed the US-led invasion of Iraq and has fiercely criticised Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's support and his decision to deploy 3000 troops in Iraq.

Sgrena reported from Baghdad during the bombardment of the city in March 2003 (for which she was awarded the title of merit Cavaliere del Lavoro by Italy's president) and returned many times to describe the daily lives of Iraqis under living occupation.

The Jawa Report has speculated in the past the Sgrena was either the victim of her own close ties with terrorist forces, or had staged her own abduction to convince the Italian people of their folly for supporting the US led occupation.

A video plea was released last month from Sgrena urging Italy to withdraw from Iraq one day before a key vote was scheduled on whether or not Italian troops would stay in Italy. At times in the video, Sgrena seemed to be directing the alleged terrorist cameraman.

UPDATE: Overheard at the Democratic 'we support our troos, just not the invasion' Underground (via Confederate Yankee):

--Do you think Eason Jordan will be asking for his job back?

--Looks as if Eason Jordan has just been vindicated.

--Why weren't we informed of the Italian attempt? Why are we just shooting randomly at autos? The "US forces shoot at" angle of this story is even more important than the fact that the reporter was (thankfully) released.

--Is anyone tracking the journalists that are "mistakenly" being shot down?

--This probably happens all the time to Iraqi citizens but it never gets reported...

-- (actual avatar) Well, they were told to shoot at "independent journalists" How are they supposed to tell the difference between "independent" and "freed" journalists?

--Makes sense: A car full of dark-skinned Foreigners, headed for the airport? Light'em up!

and the money quote:
--journalists safer in the hands of insurgents than they are at large in Iraq. News organizations will be advising captive journalists to stay put, for their own safety.


UPDATE 3/07:
New post is up on Giuliana Sgrena's Blood Libel Against the US which explores Sgrena's past anti-American utterances; including the accusation that the US was targetting journalists (said long before she was taken hostage), had used mustard gas on civilians, and tortured women in Iraq, and was complicit in the massacre of thousands in Afghanistan.

Related stories from The Jawa Report:
Italian Woman Taken Hostage in Iraq (Updated)
Italian Hostage: Hoax or the Fruits of anti-American Activism?
Italian Hostage Hoax: Terrorists to Release Giuliana Sgrena
Giuliana Sgrena Alive and Well
Italian Hostage Video Released (UPDATE)
Italians Lobby for Release of Hostage by Calling for End to Occupation
Iraqi Minister Claims Italian Hostage Release Imminent

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:12 PM | Comments |

NK: So ronery and we need to be roved

NK in LA Times: We are human and we need to be roved, just like everybody else does. Kevin McCullough fisks the article in the WND here.

By the way, Kevin, I hear that Barbara Demick wrote the story because she didn't want to end up like Hans Brix.

For another perspective on the situation in North Korea here is what the traitor Charles Jenkins has to say about the ronery dictator of the country he defected to 40 years ago:

“I believe Kim Jong Il is an evil person. He is exploiting and oppressing the (North Korean) people,” Jenkins answered the reporters who asked him what he thought.

Jenkins was an American soldier stationed in South Korea, Compound 8, but crossed the Demilitarized Zone into North Korea for fear of being sent to the Vietnam during the war, in January 5, 1965. However, he lived in misery ever since. With three other American soldiers who defected to North Korea, he survived torture and hunger and was obliged to study about Kim Il Sung [the former dictator] ten hours per day. He was expelled from Pyongyang for secretly listening to BBC broadcasts by changing the fixed radio stations, and got into trouble by requesting defection to the Soviet Embassy in Pyongyang. One time, a North Korean doctor cut out his skin on his shoulder where he had a tattoo that read, “U.S. Army” without anesthesia.

For recent reports on the situation in North Korea, read The Daily NK.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:07 PM | Comments |

Al Jazeera Hires Former CNBC Europe Head

When the bombs finally start falling on al Jazeera, will Eason Jordan blame the US for Lindsey Oliver's death? Al Reuters reports that al Jazeera has picked up ideological ally and former head of MSNBC Europe, Lindsey Oliver, to head up the terrorist networks new English language channel.

Former executive at ITN Nick Walshe is also set to work for the new channel. Yes, that's the same ITN that many PBS news affiliates regularly run feed from.

For their part, al Jazeera had this to say:

"Together we will work to bring the English-speaking world an alternative voice in news and to provide both a regional voice and a global perspective to a potential world audience of over one billion English speakers."
As if the English speaking world needed the perspective of terrorists, Arab supremicists, anti-Semites, jihadis, Islamists, and their dhimmi allies.

It's good to see so many British citizens collaborating in the planned death of their own civilization by fascists in the Islamic world.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:47 PM | Comments |

Syrian Withdrawal from Lebanon to be Announced (UPDATED)

Syrian President Bessar Asad will address the Syrian National Assembly tomorrow and announce plans to withdraw troops from Lebanon in the speech scheduled in Damascus tomorrow afternoon.

The AP, however, reports that insiders say that the Baathist dictator will announce a partial withdrawal only.

Yesterday, during a state visit to Saudi Arabia, Crown Prince Abdullah Bin Abdel Aziz warned the Syrian dictator to begin withdrawing its troops from Lebanon or face growing isolation. France, historically a backer of the Syrian dictatorship, has also called for the withdrawal.

Syria now stands isolated, with only rogue terrorist-sponsoring nations like Iran, supporting the decades old occupation of Lebanon.

When France doesn't support your dictatorship and supports an initiative from President Bush--who began the diplomatic pressure on Syria weeks ago--they you know you are isolated. President Bush has demanded Syria pull out prior to scheduled May elections.

Lebanese opposition parties, for their part, have made it clear that nothing short of a complete withdrawal of Syrian troops would satisfy them.

UPDATE: Reuters now reporting the same thing:

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is expected to announce on Saturday the pullout of some Syrian troops from Lebanon and the redeployment of the rest close to the border, a Lebanese political source said on Friday.
Assad, who delivers a speech at Syria's parliament on Saturday, is expected to declare the move in line with the Taif Accord which ended Lebanon's 1975-90 civil war, the source said.

Taif stipulates Syrian forces redeploy to the eastern Bekaa Valley and then the Lebanese and Syrian governments agree on a timeline on how long these forces would stay.

Syrian officials had no comment on the report.

Assad told Time magazine in an interview published this week that Syria's 14,000 troops might pull out of Lebanon in the next few months, the timing being technical rather than political.

Saudi Arabia added a key Arab voice on Thursday to mounting demands that Syria withdraw its troops swiftly from Lebanon. Another Arab heavyweight, Egypt, also wants Assad to pull out his 14,000 troops.

Ahh--HE LIVES and Speaks!!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:00 AM | Comments |

Break in Murder of Coptic Family in New Jersey?

UPDATE: A second arrest has been made. Newsday:

Two people have been arrested in the murder of an Egyptian Christian family, authorities said Friday.

The suspects were to be arraigned Friday afternoon in state Superior Court. The Hudson County prosecutor's office would not release the identities of those arrested or the charges they face until they appear in court.

Via Opinion Bug we learn that there may be a break in the brutal murder of the family of Hossam Armanious, a Coptic Christian who many suspect was killed by online jihadis. 7 Online:
According to two sources very close to the investigation, the FBI has picked up a suspect they believe my have some ties to the murders of a Coptic Christian family in Jersey City.

The man in custody is a former tenant of the family's home and evidence was still being removed from the home as we arrived on the scene this afternoon.

According to our source the possible suspect was picked up this morning on Charles Street and is now being interrogated by the FBI at a location in Jersey City. Our source tells us that the man in custody is providing detailed information in the case although he claims he is not responsible for the murders....

But now the motive appears to be robbery. A big break came when authorities discovered that Armonious' ATM card had been used at several locations after the murder, and authorities got a picture of the suspect and his automobile.

The NY Post names the suspect:
Detectives picked up the man, identified by a relative as Edward McDonald, 25, after reviewing surveillance videos from ATMS in Jersey City and Manhattan, WABC-TV and WNBC-TV reported.

The ex-con was providing detailed information about the case but claimed a second man was responsible for the horrific slaying of the devout Coptic Christian family, WABC said.

We hope and pray that this case is solved soon. In fact, we hope and pray that the murder of Hossam Armanious, his wife, and his two daughters, age 16 and 8, were not religously motivated. We would like to think that Islamic jihadis stalking people via the internet is not a real threat.

However much I would like to think that, a number of reports indicate that the FBI and local police would like to think the same thing. In fact, various reports in the past have indicated that local police were ignoring the hate-crime angle altogether. Are the police ignoring the facts?

For instance, today Front Page reports this from the Hudson County Prosecutor:

DeFazio is certain about one thing. All talk of religious extremism is off limits. "This case has nothing to do with religious extremism," he said. "And if you keep asking these questions, I won't continue with the interview."
Friend of The Jawa Report, Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch also notes:
terrorism and plunder often go together under Islamic law. "It isn't necessarily an either or proposition," Spencer says. "It is lawful under Islam to kill and seize the property of those who war against Islam."

Spencer says he obtained information, from sources close to the murders, that the Halal butcher had planned the killings for months and that several of his accomplices are still in the country. Spencer says police are investigating. But when DeFazio was asked about the information his office was provided, he said: "None of that was given any credence by any law enforcement agencies. Our office has not received any names." But Spencer gave the Hudson County Prosecutor's office very detailed information (names, locations and phone numbers) of the alleged murderers and their accomplices. When reminded of this, DeFazio then said that he did receive this information, but he appeared uncertain if all those named were questioned before this avenue of investigation was closed.

We are cautiously optimistic that the Hudson County prosecutor has the right man. Again, we will sleep better tonight knowing that online jihadis are only fantasizing about killing those that oppose them rather than actually following through with their murderous plans.

However, eventually fantasies become real. As the fantasies of domestic-terror groups inspired by an ideology of white-supremacy eventually becomes a reality, so too the ideology of jihadis will eventually lead them to commit acts of terror on our own soil.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:44 AM | Comments |

Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) Featured Speaker at Pro-Terrorist Sponsored Rally

International ANSWER, the Marxist organization that masks its anti-American and pro-terrorist philosophies in the guise of being anti-Iraq war, will mark the second anniversary of the liberation of Iraq on March 19. Rep. Maurice "KKKarl Rove used Jeff Gannon to get Dan Rather fired" Hinchey (D-NY) is set to be the featured speaker at a rally near the SUNY New Paltz campus.

The Confederate Yankee all over this like dKos on gay Republicans.

You still think International ANSWER's real objection to the Iraq liberation campaign is that it was illegal and unilateral? Notice the day they were formed:

"The A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition formed on September 14, 2001."

That's right, three days after 9-11.

If you are dumb enough to believe their rhetoric, you're dumb enough to---well, you're just plain dumb!

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:14 AM | Comments |

March 03, 2005

US 'Disappointed' with Bashir Sentence of 4.5 Days per Victim

The US State Department reacted to news that Abu Bakar Bashir (Ba'asyir), the mastermind of the Bali nightclub bombing, was to receive a maximum sentence of 2.5 years (that's 30 months, or 900 days, or roughly 4.5 days for each of the 202 murdered victims). The phrases used by the State Department to describe the sentence: disappointed, not commensurate, disturbed, cause for concern.

As always, the US State Department is at the forefront of condemning jihadi mass murderers in the strongest possible terms. Bashir was heard to exclaim at the news of the disturbing sentence:

I'm being oppressed by people from abroad and at home. They consider Islamic law to be a shackle and are slaves to immoral behavior. Allah, open their hearts or destroy them!"

To say that the sentence of 4.5 days for each murdered person is disturbing is a lot like saying that 9/11 was a perplexing incident. Had the word been used in a sentence like, "We find the conviction so disturbing that it makes me want to puke--and then bomb the hell out of the courthouse as well as that piece of shit ally" seems more fitting.

Australia, usually a country with a temper reacted thusly:

"We feel very passionately about what happened to our people and we'd have hoped the sentence would have been longer."
More background from my earlier post:

Our allies in the Global War on Terror have finally convicted Abu Bakar Bashir (Ba'asyir), the mastermind of the Bali nightclub bombing, to a lengthy sentence. What does the mass murder of 202 infidels get you in Indonesia? 30 months.

That's 2.5 years.

That's 900 days.

That's 4.5 days per victim.

And who does the New York Times blame for the light sentence? Who else but G.W. Bush.

New York Times:

After a trial that lasted for several months, an Indonesian court today acquitted the radical Islamic cleric Abu Bakar Bashir of the most serious terrorism charges in connection with the bombings in Bali and of the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta, and convicted him of only one count of criminal conspiracy.

The five-judge panel then sentenced the soft-spoken 66-year old cleric to 30 months in jail, but said that he would receive credit for the 10 months he has already served while awaiting trial.

Mr. Bashir, the spiritual leader of Jemaah Islamiyaah, a suspected terrorist organization, was acquitted on six of the seven counts, including charges that he had been to a terrorist training camp in the Philippines. Even on the one count on which he was convicted, in connection with the Bali bombings, the judges said he had no direct role in those bombings, but that he "knew that the perpetrators of the bombing were people who have been trained in Pakistan and Afghanistan."

But the prosecution's case against Mr. Bashir was hampered because the Bush Administration has refused to make available to the Indonesians two key Al Qaeda members who are in American custody, Riudan Isamuddin, better known as Hambali, and Omar al-Faruq.

Of course, his light sentence could not have come because of extreme public pressure for his release. For instance, his indictment sparked riots on the streets of Indonesia and Indonesian authorities would let him out of his cell to walk the sreets and get cups of coffee.

The US and Australia, needless to say, are not happy campers. 88 of the 202 victims in the Bali bombing were Australian. JPOST:

"We'd like to see a longer sentence," Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer told Sky News, adding however that Australians could at least take a little comfort in the fact that he would remain in jail for at least one more year.

Downer said Bashir "without any doubt" had been "a spiritual inspiration to Jemaah Islamiyah in Indonesia" and played a role in the bombings.

A US Embassy spokesman in Jakarta also said the sentence should have been longer.

"We respect the independence and judgment of the Indonesian courts," spokesman Max Kwak said. "But given the gravity of the charges on which he was convicted, we are disappointed at the length of the sentence."

Photos: Images from a March 3rd rally in support of Bashir. Notice the anti-Israel slogan in the second pic.

UPDATE: Joyner has more

UPDATE II: The Imperial Torturer also adds his two-pesos

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:03 PM | Comments |

Al Qaeda's New Magazine Urges (surprise) Jihad in Iraq, Advice to Brad Pitt

alqaedamag.jpgAl Qaeda has a new internet based magazine, one that is sure to give Martha Stewart's Living a run for its money. Guardian:

A new online magazine purportedly posted by al-Qaida's affiliate in Iraq has launched an effort to recruit Muslims to rid Iraq of infidels and apostates [eg]...Americans and their Iraqi partners.

The colorful, well-designed magazine is named Zurwat al-Sanam, Arabic for ``The Tip of the Camel's Hump'' - a reference among Islamic militants to ``the epitome of belief and virtuous activity.''

Friend of the Jawa Report, counter-terrorism expert, and fellow blogger Evan Kohlmann also gets mention.
Washington-based counterterrorism expert Evan Kohlmann told The Associated Press the m