November 30, 2005

The Lesson Of Susan Hallums: Or, Why I Refuse To Condemn These Hostages

Susan Hallums, ex-wife of former hostage in Iraq Roy Hallums, left this comment on my post here:

I was deeply saddened to hear that more hostages were taken. These men were good Christian men trying to help promote peace in Iraq. I will pray for their safe release and for their families. There is such devastation to the families , I know this horror... I pray for them , I wish I could help in some way.

I replied to Ms. Hallums via email, here is what I wrote:

Please do not take any criticism I have for the CPT organization as a whole to mean that I have no empathy for the plight of these people.

I do not believe for one minute, no matter what brought them to Iraq, that anyone should be subjected to what Mr. Hallums went through.

I've watched what happened to Nick Berg and the others, I know full well what these people are capable of, and I wish that on no human being.

I still pray for Mr. Hallums', and your, good health, although I know you may never fully recover from his ordeal.

Ms. Hallums was kind enough to reply, however, since I don't have permission, and it's irrelevant to this post anyway, I won't publish it.

Look, kids, I spent a healthy chunk of my dwindling free time yesterday perusing the CPT website, and I wholeheartedly disagreed with just about, well, no, absolutely everything they do. From the Adopt a Detainee campaign to opposing any kind of enforcement of our national sovereignty on the border.

But I still won't wash my hands of these hostages. Here's another nugget I found this evening:

The organization is supported by several Protestant denominations, including the Mennonite Church, that believe Christianity forbids all war-making and violence. It has sent activists into war zones, including Bosnia and Haiti, since the late 1980s. It has about 160 members around the world and about a dozen in Iraq.

Folks, based upon their website, I was under the impression that this group was far larger than it really is. Had I known this, I wouldn't have spent so much time on that website. The influence they wield is precisely nil. Jane Novak, one woman with a blog, has had more global impact in a year than these people have in 20.

So what is the lesson here? First off, as Rusty said in his reply to Ms. Hallums' comment, and I paraphrase, "I believe they're misguided, but they're victims nonetheless." Second, I draw from my own experience. I've written posts about local stories on my home blog about murdered children, and twice the mothers of those children, like Susan Hallums, commented on my post. And like Susan Hallums, I've had a nice exchange of email.

These hostages, whose politics and ideology I may wholeheartedly disagree with, are still human beings. They have, from what I know right now, committed no evil acts that have placed them in the situation they're in. Granted, running around in Iraq as a member of the Christian Peacemakers may not be the smartest thing to do in this day and age, but it's surely not evil.

There's that, and there's what I've been alluding to this whole time. These people have families and friends. They more than likely have family and friends who, like me, totally disagree with the mission they undertook, or the views they hold. But, be that as it may, the loved ones of these people probably don't care one whit about those political views right now. They surely don't believe that these people deserve to be in the place they are.

And neither do I. Granted, this all may turn out to be one big stunt, but at this point, I could care less. If it is, all I'm out is the fact that maybe I cared a little too much. I can live with that.

What I couldn't live with is if I were making statements like the ones I've read, on this blog and others. Glib, making flip comments, only to see these people get the Nick Berg treatment. If it were my brother (quite a moonbat in his own right, I must say) over there, and I stumbled upon some of what I've read both here and elsewhere, I would be disgusted.

If you still can't find empathy for these four based on their ideology, that's fine, I can't control what you think or feel. But at least pause for a moment and consider their families.

F.E.T.E

By Vinnie at 11:51 PM | Comments |

Fox News Holiday Ornaments?

IMPORTANT UPDATE: The Fox News Store is now selling Christmas ornaments for Christmas trees.

Real Teen has tipped me off to a story that is just somewhat baffling. The FOX News Shop is selling ornaments this year but not just any ornaments holiday ornaments; not Christmas tree ornaments:

Fox NEWS Holiday Ornaments

You'd think a cable news channel with Bill O'Reilly who has been saying that Christmas is under attack and that he doesn't think it's right and then you have John Gibson who has a published book titled, The War on Christmas: How the Liberal Plot to Ban the Sacred Christian Holiday Is Worse Than You Thought would be smart enough to have Christmas tree ornaments for sale.

The ultra-liberal blog, Daily Kos is calling Bill O'Reilly a hypocrite and thinks that all of us Conservatives will follow suit giving Fox News a pass on this one. I have to say that those Kos readers will be sadly disappointed when they realize that Christmas is here to stay and that no store or news network will get a pass on this one.

Real Teen is lobbying bloggers to call for a boycott of the Fox News Channel if they don't change the wording from holiday tree and holiday ornament to Christmas tree and Christmas ornament. The boycott will start on Saturday, December 3, 2005 at 1930 EDT. You should express your concern to those at Fox News via one of these methods:

Fox News Contact Page
(888) 369-4762
comments@foxnews.com
1211 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036

I'm sure if Bill O'Reilly and John Gibson were alerted to this they'd be furious too so you might as well drop them a line.

Merry Christmas,
Chris Short

UPDATE: PROGRESS! Already the titles of the products have been changed to Christmas Ornament but the term holiday tree still exists. The boycott stands until holiday tree is changed to Christmas tree:

fox-news-christmas-ornaments-01.jpg

Originally Posted at Conservative Thinking

By at 07:43 PM | Comments |

U.S. Delegates Snubbed at Caracas Airport

A senior delegation of U.S. lawmakers, led by Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., the powerful chairman of the House International Relations Committee, was snubbed by Venezuelan authorities at Maiquetia International Airport in Caracas. The delegates were not allowed to disembark from their plane and eventually left.

Venezuelan officials denied reports that the incident happened, however, U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said the Venezuelan government had in fact apologized for the incident.

It's my perception that Hugo Chavez's attitude toward international diplomacy will soon be indistinguishable from the attitude of North Korea's Kim Jong Il.

Hugo-Chavez Kim Jong Il

Both are thug communists that (and I know this is redundant) cannot be trusted.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 06:12 PM | Comments |

On the Fall of the West

Indication #1: 50 Cent plays a bat mitzvah

Indication #2: Celebration of absolutely dreadful writing

Indication #3: Sen. Kerry still sees himself as an important voice for policy matters (ha, the joke's on him though... he was never important)

Indication #4: Rusty gives me the key to this place. Certainly some will recognize me, as I have been around here since the beginning. My comments usually make no sense and involve the International Jewish Banking Conspiracy in some way, or are latent with extreme hostility.

In order to prevent the fall of the west, I will do the one thing I know how. I will rant with furious anger, babble with furious anger, and bring this blog back to it's core and true foundation -- ethnic slurs and Star Wars. Expect lots of both. You have been warned.

Wine-aholic

UPDATE: Rusty reminds me that I should always make room for "religious slurs" as well as ethnic ones. Tally-ho, sir. I couldn't agree more.

By at 03:43 PM | Comments |

I Heart Firefox

I just downloaded Firefox 1.5 and although I try to keep personal stuff out of this blog, can I just say how much I love Firefox. The Jawa Report looks so sweet with Firefox 1.5. That little glitch which doesn't allow IE users to copy and paste text from The Jawa Report is fixed in Firefox 1.5. Even writing this post seems like a better experience. And it is soooo much faster than my IE browser ever was!

And the best part? This little Jawa logo that the good folks at Mozilla have somehow managed to add to The Jawa Report url field:

firefox_jawa.gif

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

Propaganda in a State of War

Far too many people are unclear on the concept of propaganda. In their minds, propaganda is equated with intentional lies spread by governments. This is wrong. From Merriam-Webster we learn that propaganda is:

2 : the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person
3 : ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one's cause or to damage an opposing cause; also : a public action having such an effect
Propaganda, then, has nothing to do with the accuracy of information, only with its deliberate use to further goals. Hence, The Jawa Report has always proudly proclaimed our mission to be that of spreading propaganda in the cause of America and targetting those who spread the propaganda of the enemy.

Propaganda is not a problem, it is what that propaganda is used for that is a problem.

So, when the Left villifies the use of propaganda in furthering the goal of winning the war in Iraq, they are a) unaware of how to use the term properly, b) unaware that all armies--by definition--must engage in the spread of propaganda because facts are meaningless without some context, c) are hypocritically comfortable with a Marine killing a terrorist but not with a Marine paying a newspaper to say that the terrorist is bad, or d) are only comfortable when propaganda is prepared by them--in which case they don't believe the propaganda is really propaganda, because we all know that the objective truth is whatever the Left says it is--in which case we return to (a) since this means that they are unclear on the definition of propaganda.

Earlier today a Leftist reader e-mailed me a story from the L.A. Times which claims the U.S. pays Iraqi newspapers to publish stories favorable to the U.S. By definition this is propaganda. What is vexing, though, is why any one would have any objections to this unless they are making any of mistakes a-d listed above?

Jeff Goldstein is always a good man to go to in a pinch when semantics are at issue.

I’m not so sure I see “largely factual” pro-American “propaganda” as too much of a problem if it helps to burnish the image of Americans in the eyes of skeptical Iraqis long under the boot heel of a tyranical dictator—and in doing so, helps save soldiers lives and expedites the victory on the ground and the establishment of a strong and viable Iraqi government.

Also, it bears noting here the the US military is working with willing Iraqi newspapers in an effort to thwart the insurgency by defeating them not just on the battlefield, but in the sphere of public perception.

Questions: have we used these same techniques in other wars? Certainly. Should we? Absolutely—particularly if it could save US soldiers’ lives and help end the insurgency. [READ THE REST]

And Steve Green chimes in:
Except, of course, the news isn't "fake." Biased? Yes, but it's supposed to be - it's part of the propaganda campaign. Propaganda is important in any war, but it's vital in a media war.

That's not fascism; that's fighting a battle where no one gets shot at and no one gets killed.

Which is exactly the point. How can one be in favor of killing in war but not telling stories in war?

What made the Nazi propaganda of Josef Goebells and Tokyo Rose so wrong (and why both were legitimate military targets) was not that it was propaganda but that it was propaganda meant to undermine the victory of the United States millitary.

Propaganda is a weapon in war. When any weapon is in the hands of our military, it is an asset. Weapons are bad only when they are in the hands of the enemy.

Which makes one wonder why Leftists, so-called 'moderates', or even some on the Right, would consider a weapon in the hands of the U.S. military a bad thing? Unless, of course, they considered the real enemy to be.......

Not that I would ever question anyone's patriotism....

(via Glenn, who I'll hat tip even though I would have got to Steve and Jeff's post had not "I" come before "P" and "V" in my RSS reader)

More below if you're really into the philosophy of contextualized and hierarchical rights in a state of war.

Here's a slight refresher course from Jawa 101. Old readers will be familiar with it, newer readers might benefit from it.

From Censorship In a State of War
------------------------

From Hobbes' Leviathan:

Hereby it is manifest that during the time men live without a common power to keep them all in awe, they are in that condition which is called war; and such a war as is of every man against every man. For war consisteth not in battle only, or the act of fighting, but in a tract of time, wherein the will to contend by battle is sufficiently known: and therefore the notion of time is to be considered in the nature of war, as it is in the nature of weather. For as the nature of foul weather lieth not in a shower or two of rain, but in an inclination thereto of many days together: so the nature of war consisteth not in actual fighting, but in the known disposition thereto during all the time there is no assurance to the contrary. All other time is peace.
I think Hobbes has helped me frame what is going on in this country. Many do not understand that we are at war. Even if the actual battles are far away, the state of war exists. It is here. It is now.

The state of war is the medium in which all of our lives are lived. We are the fish, it is the water. All of our actions must be constructed with this in mind. We cannot escape the state of war by somehow denying we are in it. Can the fish suddenly sprout lungs and breathe simply because it does not recognize that his environment is water, not air?

That larger war, is all around us. The media does not understand this concept. They think there is a war 'over there' but not here. That somehow Iraq is separate from the larger war, which is all around us. This is why they believe it is ok to publish pictures of prisoner abuse in Abu Ghraib, because the 'war' is over there. Here, there is peace. But as Hobbes rightly observes the "nature of war consisteth not in actual fighting, but in the known disposition thereto during all the time there is no assurance to the contrary."

It may seem like an unimportant and abstract distinction. What does it matter whether or not a 'state of war' exists everywhere or only in Iraq? But distinctions, even when they are only made by assumption, are absolutely critical to the way we think. The distinction between war and peace is very crucial, because moral actions depend on context. If the context is peace, then moral beings are compelled by conscience to behave in one way. If the context is war, then the same moral being must act in another way. The same is true of the press.

A free-press cannot be maintained in a state of war. Even from a Lockean perspective we cannot understand our liberties as anything but ordered. The inconveniences of living without order makes man:

willing to quit this condition which, however free, is full of fears and continual dangers; and it is not without reason that he seeks out and is willing to join in society with others who are already united, or have a mind to unite for the mutual preservation of their lives, liberties and estates, which I call by the general name- property. (Second Treatise IX:123)
A close reading of Locke reveals that his love of property is a means to an end--property is necessary for the maintaining of life. Life is the first and foremeost right ordained by Nature.

Although I love the right to speak and cherish the liberty of the press, such liberty is meaningless without life. All of my rights and liberties are secondary to the need to protect my life. Governments are not founded to protect speech, rather, governments are instituted to protect life.

Free speech is an instrumental value--or it is a means to an end. We want freedom of speech and press because these things are necessary to a functioning democracy. However, a functioning democracy is secondary to some amount of order so that neighbors do not settle disputes on their own--a state of War according to Hobbes and an inconvenient state of Nature according to Locke.

When the secondary value of free speech conflicts with the primary value of protecting life, the secondary must be discarded. We ought not discard such things lightly, but sometimes they must be sacrificed. We do not let the body die to save the limb.

In a state of war, people die. In a state of peace, it is tacitly understood that you can say anything so long as your words are not a "clear and present danger" (See Schenck v. United States, 1919). Holmes' maxim seems to me a simple attempt at putting to words what we all kind of know deep down: only sticks and stones may break your bones, but words sometimes do hurt you.

You cannot say something that will incite someone to kill me. In a state of peace, people aren't normally incited to murder. In fact, yelling fire in a crowded theater rarely yields a riot. However, change the context and the result changes. In a state of war since some amount of anarchy is already present and there is an understanding that it is o.k. to kill, then the likelihood for words to lead to death is greatly multiplied.

Loose lips in times of peace are meaningless. In war, loose lips sink ships.

Did CBS's decision to air the photos of abuse at Abu Ghraib cause the brutal murder of Nick Berg? No. Of course not. Al Qaida rarely needs an excuse to commit an atrocity. Did such images contribute to his death? Probably not. He was a dead man walking from the moment he was captured.

However, such images do reinforce the preexisting notion in the Muslim world that the US is just another oppressive power. As such, these images mean that fence-sitters are more likely to join the opposition. Those not actually engaged in fighting will be less inclined to cooperate with us. Having a population less inclined to cooperate with us means terrorists will have an easier climate in which to operate. They will no longer have to fear their neighbor turning them in to Coalition forces. They can operate with near impunity. Chaos continues. People die. This all in one small field of one battle in the larger War on Terror.

For the larger war the images are even worse. They reinforce what the traitors Said and Chomsky have been saying for years: America is bad, mmm-kay. They ensure that hostility towards us will find increasing justification.

As moral beings, people tend to want to do good. I know, we all are sinful and all that, but that tells us little more than that men are selfish. Even the selfish man tries to find some justification for his actions. He is entitled to the money, everybody else does it, it's not as bad as some other worse thing, etc. The point is that we all need to feel that what we are doing is right.

Hence, the murderers and terrorists tell themselves stories that make their actions justifiable. The US is bad. So bad that they need to be stopped. So bad, that killing an American, even a civilian, is justified. So bad, that beheading him is the only way to let the Americans know that we mean business. America is a virus, and viruses need to be killed.

Our media's hyper-self-criticism is fodder for the fire. By making our minor flaws out to be something horrific, we give our enemies the moral justification they need to sleep at night after a day of mass-murder.

The images also remind us that propaganda works. The military had already begun investigating the abuses long before the images were available. But it was seeing the images, not the abuse that made so many furious. In a similar fashion, I had known that Nick Berg was beheaded and it pissed me off. But it was only when I saw the images that I went Mad Max.

Without the images the reality does not exist in the same way. When the media chose to run pictures of our abuse, they gave the enemy something else to throw in our faces. The great Satan is just as bad as Saddam Hussein---see, they are here to humiliate you---see, take up arms against the great Satan!!

More of our men are sure to die. There will be more Nick Bergs because of this.

Some of them would have died, with or without the images, but others' lives would have been spared. Some would have escaped, as did Thomas Hamil, because killing a hostage isn't always the priority. But if the US is a country of unreasonable barbarians, then there is no use in keeping hostages alive. Kill them all!

As long as we are in a state of war, the media must act in ways consistent with winning and bringing back a state of peace. If they cannot do it themselves, they must be forcibly censored.

Many of you may not know this, but during WWII the government had an actual censorship board. All broadcast and print media were censored for content that could hinder speedy victory. All pro-Japanese and pro-German publications were shut down. Leaders of the German-American Bund were rounded up and locked away.

All of the nation's propaganda might were aimed at winning the war. Pearl Harbor woke our population up, but a concerted effort at keeping our citizens ever aware of the war kept us awake. The event gave us the emotional will to begin the war, but it was propaganda that gave us the stomach to see it through to the end. The free-press gave way to the more immediate need of protecting lives.

For those of you who know my true identity, much of this may seem shocking. I am a civil libertarian, and if my state would allow it I would be a registered Libertarian. The main objection to regulating the press is the notion that somehow we will devolve into a state of fascism. In truth, it is the kind of 9/10 rhetoric I would have also used. But it is just rhetoric and nothing else.

Worse, it is a slippery slope argument that has no real basis in historical fact. As much as I love Nozick and Locke, epistemologically I must agree with Burke: societies and people do not spring forth from some imagined state of nature where rights exist, but are molded by culture and tradition.

The civil libertarian argument has much merit, but all arguements must be made in some context and with reference to actual social conditions. The context of the here and now is war; and the social condition of our nation is that of a people generally dedicated to limited government. We are a country and a people molded after Cincinnatus, not Caesar.

To think that content censorship would continue after we have defeated the threat of Islamofascism is to overlook WWI and WWII. In both cases we had direct censorship. In both cases the censorship eventually ended.

In sum, I call on Congress to recognize that the War on Terror must be handled as TOTAL WAR. All of the Nation's resources and will must be turned to that aim. From time to time events shock our conscience and reawaken us to the fact that our enemies want us dead. Between these times there must be a concerted effort by the entire nation to constantly remind us that war is a fact.

We do not fight war for its own sake, but to restore the state of peace. When we have won, then let us quibble about the merits of prancing prisoners around in underwear. Let us not focus on the mote in our own eye when the beam in our enemy's is strapped with TNT and he is eager to kill us.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 02:23 PM | Comments |

New Chancellor: Germany Will Not Negotiate with Terrorists

The first female Chancellor in German history has come out shooting. In a 180 degree turnaround from her predecessor, the first words out of Angela Merkel's mouth to the newly constituted parliament:

"This government, this parliament will not let itself be blackmailed," Merkel said. "It (terrorism) is directed at everything that is important to us, at the core of our civilization. It is directed against our entire value system."
Merkel's statement was directed toward terrorists who have threatened to murder German archaeologist Susanne Osthoff. The terrorists have threatened to murder Osthoff if Germany does not stop cooperating with the U.N. sanctioned Iraqi governemnt.

Can some one please tell me how any one in the MSM--in even the most conservative of publications--can call a group or an individual threatenting to murder a hostage a 'militant'?

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

Call off the dogs

Rumors of Osama's death in the Kashmir earthquake are nothing new and nothing secret. I had heard this a long time ago and it's not surprising Harry Reid did as well.

The video clip linked from Pajamas Media has an anchor indicating that Reid is just speculating here, and then shows him saying, "Well I'm not sure he's alive anymore. I think it's possible that the earthquake in Pakistan...took him down as well."

No law against his saying that. Even if he were briefed at a top-secret level about Osama's demise, what he said is available through open sources and therefore fair game. But I think he's just speculating.

By See-Dubya at 01:12 PM | Comments |

Excuse Me While I Kiss the Sky

Although I'm not sure what this 'Christmas' thing every one seems to be supporting these days, I have always been a big fan of X-mas. Except for that killer robot Santa. Anyway, I'll axe all of you to sign the petition to save X-mas.

I, for one, welcome our new Messiah overlord in Iran.

Osama bin Laden is dead. I know becaue Harry Reid told me.

I've been following the case of Joel Henry Hinrichs closely and have read all of the documents released from the FBI which Michelle Malkin has archived. Although I agree with Michelle and Jason that the MSM reaction to Hinrichs was baffling, to say the least, given the context of a hot war against Islamist extremists, I find that the documents are exculpatory rather than damning. In fact, given the large number of e-mails read by the FBI in Hinrich's Yahoo account, you would expect that if a larger Islamist plot existed that it would be in these e-mails that such a plot would be revealed. The FBI--at least in its public statements--have found no such evidence. Further, the documents reveal that Hinrichs Muslim room mate cooperated with the FBI and allowed them to search his room. So, in my opinion: case closed.

Happy Birthday Winston Churchill

Saddam's top prison complaints include: "The rape rooms in this prison are way different, and far less enjoyable, than the ones I used to run."

A new pro-Iraqi democracy blog written by Nibras Kazimi. Cool.

Need I remind you that failure is not an option in Iraq?

The Man has evidence of photoshopping by Moveon.org to cover up their ignorance of the American military. Personally I'm glad they replaced those gay British shorts with some American pants.

Fwance imploding.

New Orleans to become largest free-porn city in America in effort to attract residents to move back in.

Bill Moyers believes that it is a myth to call the media 'liberal' since, you know, focusing reporting on how the government ought to spend more on welfare programs is just 'good reporting'. (hat tip: Joe Goat)

Rusty Shackleford is hoping to displace his Imperial Highness as Most Annoying Right-Of-Center Blogger. So any blogger involved in this year's RWN poll, please remember just how annoying I have been this year.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:20 AM | Comments |

WTW Deersicles

Yeah I reckon I had best rant about something. So first of all my dog who is black as coal but won’t leave me alone since I put that deer in the freezer. He says he wants a deersicle. Bad dog, daddy’s deer meat, go lay down!! Then we have old DUKE who is not a dog but forgot who his master is. Really DUKE who did you work for? Can’t say much for the way the system is running right now look what it did for old DUKE. I pretty much figure that about 534 others need to take a look at this. I can understand the salary that “we the people” pay you pales in comparison to the real money in politics. That might lead to a little confusion about who you are working for, so let me remind you. It’s the people who you represented dipshit. Nothing pisses me off like scraping around all year for nickels and dimes only to see this crap. And it’s not just one side of the isle. People like Jackass Abramof lobby both sides. Maybe the people should put a boot up both sides ass to you know kind of remind them. It’s hard to forget who you are working for when he has a size 13 shoe up your rectum. Speaking of rectum, DUKE a word of advice I hope you saved back a few bucks for rectum protection. So look at what greed has done in this case. Taken a fine man and 8 term congressman and made him into a slave to the money and left the people holding the bill.

So while I’m all pissed and stuff we have another big giant rectum out there somewhere hacking Grey Eagle’s site. Mr. Right emails again today that Anna, his co-blogger (see got that right this time), is calling our attention to Grey Eagles plight again. So another size 13 boot should be fit snugly in some hack bastard’s sphincter.

Here are your White Trash Wednesday bloggers

Oh why I’m at it that damn deer that ran in front of a car last night caused some other moron to drive up and down the road back and forth in his pick em up truck looking for the road kill. Ok so first of all at least a good part of the meat is ruined, bruised beyond recovery so why keep me up for and hour? Go buy a spotlight your truck had every other light and glass packs, you can afford one. So it’s road kill I’ve eaten that before but I was trying to sleep and your constant rumm rumm back and forth at 3:00 am pissed me off. Hell knock and I’d give you a nice deer roast just to get back to sleep.

By Howie at 10:17 AM | Comments |

Every Picture Tells a Story(Update)

Yes vacation over. I could have taken another year or so off cept for I need the money. But look what falls into my lap this AM on MYYAHOO. Plus I see we have a new font. Wow I did miss a lot. Whew I'm worn out from all that resting.

Updated : Howie has picked a winner for this one tough job.

Caption this pic of Cindy's book signing last week in Crawford Texas. I mean just look at the line.


Winner Graeme :

Even during moments of mind numbing boredom, Cindy Sheehan still wasn't willing to read her own book.


Honorable mention Thirdee:

We should've had refreshments.
and kanerogers:
00:15:01

V the K does not win cause his captions are on his blog not here, but read em here anyway. Good title too.

By Howie at 08:43 AM | Comments |

Islamic Site: Pentagon Behind Western Kidnappings

The 'news' site uruknet blames the CIA:

One look at the CPT (Christian Peacemaker Teams) in Iraq website and it becomes obvious who abducted Kember and his associates and why....No doubt all of this Christian activity sincerely upsets the Pentagon and the Bushcons.
Uruknet conveniently leaves out the fact that the video WAS NOT first released on al Jazeera as has been reported in the MSM. Rather, the video was released on a well known terrorist website linked to the Islamic Army in Iraq.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:40 AM | Comments |

November 29, 2005

The Plot Sickens Even More

Now this is fascinating. From the CPT History/Mission page:

Iraq – a Baghdad-based presence since October 2002. Team members accompanied the Iraqi people through the U.S.-led 2003 war and continue during the post-war occupation to expose abusive acts by U.S. Armed Forces and support Iraqis committed to nonviolent resistance.

This organization went into Iraq while Saddam Hussein was still in power.

Yet, I still hope for the hostages safe release.

UPDATE: Geez, 18 comments on this post and no one noticed that I spelled "history" as "hisory." With friends like you, who needs enemas?

By Vinnie at 06:36 PM | Comments |

'Peace' Group Blames U.S. for Terrorist Kidnappings

The 'Christian Peacemaker Teams' organization has confirmed the identities of four Westerners kidnapped in Iraq after The Jawa Report first revealed their names earlier today. In addition, the group blamed the U.S. and U.K. governments for the terrorist abductions of their team members. Like many Left wing 'peace' activists, the group decided to condemn the unintended consequences of the U.S. invasion while overlooking the very intentional acts of violence against civilians by terrorists.

Sources tell The Jawa Report that the "The Swords of Righteousness Brigade" may be an offshoot of The Islamic Army in Iraq. The announcement and video were posted on that group's website earlier today. The Islamic Army in Iraq has murdered foreign hostages in the past, including Italian Red Cross worker Enzo Baldoni, and has worked with Abu Musab al Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq in the past. The group routinely murders those suspected of being 'collaborators', 'apostates', and 'spies'.

This is bad news for the hostages if confirmed. If the mesage from the Christian Peacemaker Teams is meant to garner sympathy from the Salafist terror organization, then they are barking up the wrong tree. The only hope for the four Westerners is if the U.S., British, or Iraqi armies find them and liberate them--as they did former hostage Roy Hallums. Ironic, since these are the very people who are risking their lives yet who are blamed by the pacifist organization for the plight of their representatives.

Despite the misguided efforts of the pacifist organization, these four activists are victims of Islamist aggression. We condemn the hostage takers and pray for the immediate release. And, unlike the 'Christian Peacemaker Teams', we hope that the terrorists die at the hands of an angry Marine.

Their press release is below:

"Update on Missing Persons in Iraq"

We were very saddened to see the images of our loved ones on Al Jazeera television recently. We were disturbed by seeing the video and believe that repeated showing of it will endanger the lives of our friends. We are deeply disturbed by their abduction. We pray that those who hold them will be merciful and that they will be released soon. We want so much to see their faces in our home again, and we want them to know how much we love them, how much we miss them, and how anxious and concerned we are by what is happening to them.

We are angry because what has happened to our teammates is the result of the actions of the U.S. and U.K. government due to the illegal attack on Iraq and the continuing occupation and oppression of its people. Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) has worked for the rights of Iraqi prisoners who have been illegally detained and abused by the U.S. government. We were the first people to publicly denounce the torture of Iraqi people at the hands of U.S. forces, long before the western media admitted what was happening at Abu Ghraib. We are some of the few internationals left in Iraq who are telling the truth about what is happening to the Iraqi people We hope that we can continue to do this work and we pray for the speedy release of our beloved teammates.

We can confirm the identities of those who are being held as follows:

Tom Fox, age 54, is from Clearbrook, Virginia and is a dedicated father of two children. For the past two years, Mr. Fox has worked with CPT in partnership with Iraqi human rights organizations to promote peace. Mr. Fox has been faithful in the observance of Quaker practice for 22 years. While in Iraq, he sought a more complete understanding of Islamic cultural richness. He is committed to telling the truth to U.S. citizens about the horrors of war and its effects on ordinary Iraqi civilians and families as a result of U.S. policies and practices.

Mr. Fox is an accomplished musician. He plays the bass clarinet and the recorder and he loves to cook. He has also worked as a professional grocer. Mr. Fox devotes much of his time to working with children. He has served as an adult leader of youth programs and worked at a Quaker camp for youth. He has facilitated young people's participation in opposing war and violence. Mr. Fox is a quiet and peaceful man, respectful of everyone, who believes that "there is that of God in every person" which is why work for peace is so important to him.


Norman Kember, age 74, is from London, England.He and his wife of 45 years have two married daughters and a 3-year old grandson. He has been a pacifist all his life beginning with his work in a hospital instead of National Service at age 18. Before his retirement he was a professor teaching medical students at St Bartholemew's Hospital in London. He is well-known as a peace activist, and has been involved in several peace groups. For the past 10 years he has volunteered with a local program providing free food to the homeless. He likes walking, birdwatching, and writing humorous songs and sketches. In his younger days he enjoyed mountaineering.


James Loney, 41, is a community worker from Toronto, Canada. He has been a member of Christian Peacemaker Teams since August 2000, and is currently the Program Coordinator for CPT Canada. On previous visits to Iraq, his work focused on taking testimonies from families of detainees for CPT's report on detainee abuse, and making recommendations for securing basic legal rights. James was leading the November 2005 delegation in Iraq when he went missing.

James is a peace activist, writer, trained mediator, and works actively with two Toronto community conflict resolution services. He has spent many years working to provide housing and support for homeless people.

In a personal statement from James to CPT, he writes: "I believe that our actions as a people of peace must be an expression of hope for everyone. My hope in practising non-violence is that I can be a conduit for the transformative power of God's love acting upon me as much as I hope it will act upon others around me."


Harmeet Singh Sooden, 32 is a Canadian electrical engineer. He is studying for a masters degree in English literature in Auckland University in New Zealand to prepare for a teaching career. He enjoys art, is active in squash and worked part time as a local squash coach. His family describes him as peaceful and fun-loving and he is known to be passionate about the plight of the underprivileged around the globe. He works tirelessly in his spare time to educate and help others.

God speed to these and all other hostages still being held and who have been forgotten by the world in Iraq.

More on the forgotten plight of hostages in Iraq here.

Update: Ex-wife of former hostage Roy Hallums chimes in:

I was deeply saddened to hear that more hostages were taken. These men were good Christian men trying to help promote peace in Iraq. I will pray for their safe release and for their families. There is such devastation to the families , I know this horror... I pray for them , I wish I could help in some way.

-Susan Hallums

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:57 PM | Comments |

The Plot Sickens

The Christian Peacemaker Teams organization to which the 4 hostages belong just recently suspended their Adopt-a-Detainee program.

You read that right. Adopt-a-Detainee:

After a year and a half of coordinated advocacy for Iraqis detained by U.S. and other occupying forces, Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) is ending its Adopt-a-Detainee Letter-Writing Campaign. CPT's Iraq project will, however, continue to monitor the situation of Iraqis captured by the Multinational Force in Iraq (MNF) and by the new Iraqi Forces.


The Adopt-a-Detainee Letter-Writing Campaign, beginning in March 2004, matched individual detainees with congregations, mosques, synagogues, and peace groups in North America and around the world. These groups wrote letters to U.S., Iraqi and other relevant officials on the detainees' behalf. The campaign grew out of CPT's investigation of and reporting on abuses within the U.S.-run detention system in Iraq during the fall of 2003. The Adopt-a-Detainee Letter-Writing Campaign included a total of twenty-seven detainees, nine of whom U.S. officials released during the campaign, ten of whom were still detained at last word, and seven of whom U.S. officials never confirmed as detained (i.e., the "disappeared.")

They're still running the Campaign For Secure Dwellings though:

Since 1995 the Christian Peacemaker Team in Hebron has provided a violence-reduction presence with street patrols, responding when we hear word of trouble, and staying with people in tense times and places. The team also supports Israeli and Palestinian peacemakers in their work. It is clear to us that there can be no security for Israelis or Palestinians as long as the Israeli military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip continues.

Hm, guess no one bothered to tell them about the Gaza withdrawal earlier this year.

I still hope the hostages are released unharmed.

By Vinnie at 05:54 PM | Comments |

What Fallujah War Crimes?

Clinton Taylor's latest from Townhall:

WP is a terrible weapon, but it isn’t illegal, and the charges are ably refuted in this essay by Scott Burgess. All that needs to be added to Burgess’ analysis is some context: Fallujah was Al-Qaeda’s vision of paradise on earth, their ideal Taliban-style Islamic government, and it was hell. It was a nest of insurgent command and control, a site for making suicide vests and IED’s, and a slaughterhouse where beheadings were filmed and sent over the Internet to recruit more terrorists. (This slide show offers a chilling retrospective.)

Our troops are there to kill the enemy efficiently, not to inflict pain on them. When a bullet or a conventional explosive can do the job, it makes moral, tactical, and public-relations sense to employ it instead of WP. In this case, though, more Marines would have been killed had the Fallujah jihadists not been routed from their fortifications by the Willie-Peter rounds. Most of America sheds no tears for the head-hacking ghouls of Fallujah’s dungeons, who got no worse than they deserved, and who now reside where white phosphorus feels like a cool shower.

Read the rest.

Let's not forget that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi had turned Fallujah over to 'Shura councils' that were enforcing Taliban-like Sharia law. Crimes such as owning Western CD's were punished in Fallujah with execution for the unrepentant.

And the Left still thinks liberating that city was a mistake? Perhaps they also think Europe should have been left to the Nazis since, you know, invading the Continent caused so many civilian casualites......?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:13 PM | Comments |

Suicide Bomber in Iraq was Belgian Woman

A convert to the ROP left France Junior (Belgium) to become a suicide bomber in Iraq. Here's the saddest part: her Muslim husband is said to have talked her into it.

UPI:

A woman who carried out a suicide attack in Iraq two weeks ago was identified Tuesday as the first European female suicide bomber.

The Belgian anti-terrorism unit has confirmed that the woman was a Belgian citizen who converted to Islam after her marriage to a Muslim fundamentalist, news service RTL reported Tuesday.

American military forces identified the woman at a combat scene in Baghdad. She was carrying recently issued Belgian identity papers which revealed she had traveled via Turkey. There are no traces of her radical husband who is believed to have organized her trip.

Europe: breeding ground for radical Islam.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:11 PM | Comments |

(Updated) Hostage Video Released, Hostages Identified (Images/Video)


**Jawa Report Exclusive**

***The Jawa Report releases names of four Western hostages.***

A hostage video has been released of the four Western peace activists taken hostage in Iraq. The Jawa Report has obtained a copy of the video. Images from the video and links to video posted below. The video shows American Thomas Fox of Clear Brook Virginia, Canadian Harmeet Singh Sooden, who resides in Auckland, New Zealand, British citizen Norman Kember, and some one who appears to identify himself as James Loney(spelling confirmed) of Canada.

Previously only Norman Kember had been identified. The Christian Peacemaker Teams organization has confirmed to The Jawa Report in an e-mail that the four hostages were working for that group.

The copy of the video I have makes no ransom demands, although a voice can be heard directing the hostages in the background. UPDATE: Ian at the Political Teen is hosting a segment of the video here.

Here is a transcript of the video:

My name is Norman Kember. I am 74. I am a member of the Christian Peacemaking team in Iraq.

My name is Harmeet Sooden. I am 32 and I am working..I'm a volunteer for the CPT in Iraq.

My name is James Loney. I am 41 years old. I am from Canada and I am part of the Christian Peacemaker team in Iraq.

My name is Tom Fox and I am 54 years old. I am from the United States and I am a member of the Christian Peacmakers team in Iraq.

Hat tip: Doubletap who e-mailed me the video.

Here is a rough translation of the statement accompanying the video--again, thanks to Doubletap:

foreign arrest of four spy

Praise be to God god of the scientists and the prayer and the faithful peace on the prophet, and on his family and accompanied him ['ajme'yn]

As for after. Losing managed your brothers in secrecy of swords the truth from arrest of four spy is foreign forces of the occupation under cover do for what Christian team the peace rises in, [wllh] the praising god of the scientists.

Secrecy swords of the truth

Swords of Righteousness Brigade is how some MSM outlets are translating the announcement. The group accused the four peace activists of "masqerading" as peace activists and of really being spies. Update: My sources indicate that "The Swords of Righteousness Brigade" may be an offshoot of The Islamic Army in Iraq. The announcement and video were posted on that group's website earlier today. The Islamic Army in Iraq has murdered foreign hostages in the past, including Italian Red Cross worker Enzo Baldoni, and has worked with Abu Musab al Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq in the past. This is bad news for the hostages if confirmed.

The original announcement in Arabic can be downloaded here if some one would like to offer a better translation.

UPDATE: Flip from Suitably Flip has a different machine translation here which is a little clearer.

UPDATE II: Shawn of Bareknucklepolitics points us to these dispatches from Iraq written by hostage Thomas Fox who wonders if Americans are inheritly racists and have colonialist attitudes. We pity people like Tom who have such low regard for the men who will now risk their lives to save his.

UPDATE: Jawa Report revelations force CPT to confirm identities of hostages.

We can confirm the identities of those who are being held as follows:

Tom Fox, age 54, is from Clearbrook, Virginia and is a dedicated father of two children. For the past two years, Mr. Fox has worked with CPT in partnership with Iraqi human rights organizations to promote peace. Mr. Fox has been faithful in the observance of Quaker practice for 22 years. While in Iraq, he sought a more complete understanding of Islamic cultural richness. He is committed to telling the truth to U.S. citizens about the horrors of war and its effects on ordinary Iraqi civilians and families as a result of U.S. policies and practices.

Mr. Fox is an accomplished musician. He plays the bass clarinet and the recorder and he loves to cook. He has also worked as a professional grocer. Mr. Fox devotes much of his time to working with children. He has served as an adult leader of youth programs and worked at a Quaker camp for youth. He has facilitated young people's participation in opposing war and violence. Mr. Fox is a quiet and peaceful man, respectful of everyone, who believes that "there is that of God in every person" which is why work for peace is so important to him.


Norman Kember, age 74, is from London, England.He and his wife of 45 years have two married daughters and a 3-year old grandson. He has been a pacifist all his life beginning with his work in a hospital instead of National Service at age 18. Before his retirement he was a professor teaching medical students at St Bartholemew's Hospital in London. He is well-known as a peace activist, and has been involved in several peace groups. For the past 10 years he has volunteered with a local program providing free food to the homeless. He likes walking, birdwatching, and writing humorous songs and sketches. In his younger days he enjoyed mountaineering.


James Loney, 41, is a community worker from Toronto, Canada. He has been a member of Christian Peacemaker Teams since August 2000, and is currently the Program Coordinator for CPT Canada. On previous visits to Iraq, his work focused on taking testimonies from families of detainees for CPT's report on detainee abuse, and making recommendations for securing basic legal rights. James was leading the November 2005 delegation in Iraq when he went missing.

James is a peace activist, writer, trained mediator, and works actively with two Toronto community conflict resolution services. He has spent many years working to provide housing and support for homeless people.

In a personal statement from James to CPT, he writes: "I believe that our actions as a people of peace must be an expression of hope for everyone. My hope in practising non-violence is that I can be a conduit for the transformative power of God's love acting upon me as much as I hope it will act upon others around me."


Harmeet Singh Sooden, 32 is a Canadian electrical engineer. He is studying for a masters degree in English literature in Auckland University in New Zealand to prepare for a teaching career. He enjoys art, is active in squash and worked part time as a local squash coach. His family describes him as peaceful and fun-loving and he is known to be passionate about the plight of the underprivileged around the globe. He works tirelessly in his spare time to educate and help others.

Update: Ex-wife of former hostage Roy Hallums chimes in:
I was deeply saddened to hear that more hostages were taken. These men were good Christian men trying to help promote peace in Iraq. I will pray for their safe release and for their families. There is such devastation to the families , I know this horror... I pray for them , I wish I could help in some way.

-Susan Hallums

Developing.....

Images below.

Image of Canadian Harmeet Singh Sooden--also a resident of New Zealand-- from the hostage video.

christian_peacemakers_hostage_video_Harmeet_1.jpg

Image of James Loney, also of Canada.

christian_peacemakers_hostage_video_James_1.jpg


Image of Thomas Fox, an American from Virginia, from the hostage video.

christian_peacemakers_hostage_video_Tom_FOX_1.jpg

Image of Briton Norman Kember from the hostage video.

christian_peacemakers_hostage_video_norman_kember_2.jpg

Video has been uploaded here by Doubletap.

Background in the Norman Kember archives.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:14 AM | Comments |

German Archaeologist Susanne Osthoff Taken Hostage in Iraq

Susanne_Osthoff_hostage_iraq_small.jpgThe Jawa Report has learned that the name of the German woman shown in a hostage video is Susanne Osthoff. Osthoff is an archaeologist working in Iraq and was abducted with her driver last Friday. Osthoff was presumably working on a dig at the ruins of Isin when she was abducted.

UPDATE: Chad at In the Bullpen e-mails me about a NY Times report that Osthoff had been targetted by Abu Musab al Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq over the summer. If she has been abducted by al Qaeda then her only hope lies in a quick rescue and your prayers.

After news of Ms. Osthoff's kidnapping became known here, a German newspaper, the Neue Osnabrücker Zeiting, reported that Ms. Osthoff had been targeted by extremist groups close to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi during the summer, when she was living in Mosul in northern Iraq. At the time, the newspaper said, Ms. Osthoff was escorted by American soldiers to Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone. Since then, Ms. Osthoff has been negotiating both with the German Embassy in Baghdad and the local Kurdish-dominated government in the northern town of Arbil to build a German cultural center there, the newspaper said.
Osthoff was active in documenting archealogical sites looted in Iraq after the U.S. led invasion and was widely quoted in the media at the time.

More information about Susan Osthoff below and in the Susan Osthoff archives.

In a 2003 NY Times piece Osthoff says:

"In two weeks, they have ruined all the work that was done over 15 years," said Susanne Osthoff, an archaeologist who worked with a German team that excavated at Isin from the mid-1970's until 1989....

Ms. Osthoff, who returned to Iraq shortly before American forces overthrew the government of Mr. Hussein, was alerted by local villagers who were horrified by the destruction at Isin.

Protected by old friends, Ms. Osthoff waded into the mob of heavily-armed diggers four days ago and then escorted two journalists to the site again on Wednesday.

"They [the looters] are poor people, and they are desperate to make some money," she said today. "But they do not understand what they are doing."

According to ADNKI , Osthoff was abducted with her driver near Ninevah.

Further:

The kidnappers sent a video to the broadcaster's offices in Baghdad in which they showed the hostages and threatened to kill the woman if the German government does not suspend every form of cooperation with the Iraqi government.

The video shows a woman and a man blindfolded and on their knees. Nearby are three armed men with their faces covered. The woman has a chain around her neck, with her passport attached to it.

The German Foreign Ministry has confirmed that the archaeologist and her driver have been missing since Friday. "We are doing everything possible to guarantee the safety of the woman," a spokesman said. "We are in contact with all the offices of the government of Iraq to confirm what has happened."

So, archeology is considered "collaboration" by the salaafist jihadis these days?

Hat tip to Dread Pundit Bluto who has more.

Developing........

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:51 AM | Comments |

Muslims Cuffed in Gay Mass Marriage Raid

(Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates) Authorities raided a hotel and arrested 26 men for alleged adultery and prostitution during a mass homosexual wedding. The men were UAE nationals, Arabs, and Asians. Some were dressed as women, with make-up and hairstyles, and the others were dressed in Arab attire.

A rash of Muslim Arab homosexual gatherings and group arrests has occurred recently and the country's leadership is alarmed. According to Interior Ministry spokesman Issam Azouri, the men will probably be tried under Sharia Law and they could be sentenced to receive government-ordered hormone treatments, jail and lashes. However, Islamic scholar Abdul Salam Mohammad Darwish said that a man who has intercourse with another man "should be executed" under Sharia Laws.

From LATimes.com:

Police acting on a tip raided the hotel in Ghantout, a desert region on the Dubai-Abu Dhabi highway, and found a dozen men dressed as female brides and a dozen others in male Arab dress, apparently preparing for a ceremony that would join them as husbands and wives, Azouri said.

"It was a real party with balloons and champagne," he said.

The 26 men arrested include those from the Emirates as well as an Indian disc jockey and three men from neighboring Arab states. One of the arrested was to perform the wedding ceremony. Azouri said some of the group told police they worked as prostitutes. Others had been arrested before.

Last year, there were mass arrests at gay blowouts in Sharjah Emirate and Fujairah Emirate which only resulted in symbolic punishment, meant to humiliate, said prominent Emirati lawyer Abdul Hamid al-Kumaiti. The men were subsequently released.
"There are so many others like these guys," al-Kumaiti said. "The police and rulers need to do more than just lash them and let them go."
Based on al-Kumaiti's statements, I suspect that there is a significant homosexual influence on the Arabian Peninsula.

As would be expected, the Arab and Muslim media have been very reluctant to report on the homosexual clusterings out of fear that tribal leaders will become incensed by the appearance that homosexual behavior is tolerated. Homosexuality among Muslims in an Arab country is deemed too "delicate" a matter to be reported to the public. Consequently, if people in Muslim countries want to know what's going on in their gay communities, they won't find it in the local newspaper. They'll have to backdoor it from the Western media.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 09:50 AM | Comments |

Brit, American, & Canadian Hostages Worked for anti-war Christian Peace Organization

norman_kember_hostage_iraq.jpgUPDATE: Jawa Report Exclusive--names of hostages released. Names, images, and video of the hostages here.


The Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) organization has confirmed to The Jawa Report in an e-mail that Norman Kember, an unidentified Canadian, and two unidentified Americans were abducted from that group's Iraq peace delegation.

The Christian pacifist organization declined to name the three other hostages at this time.

In a seperate statement released today by the organization, the CPT said:

CPT has been present in Iraq since October, 2002. The Team's work has focused on documenting and focusing public attention on detainee abuses and connecting citizens of Iraq to local and international human rights organizations. Iraqi friends and human rights workers have welcomed the Team as a non-violent, independent presence and asked that the Team tell the stories of Iraqis.

In a "Statement of Conviction," the long-term Team members stated that they "are aware of the many risks both Iraqis and internationals currently face," and affirmed that the risks did not outweigh their purpose in remaining. They express the hope that "in loving both friends and enemies and by intervening non-violently to aid those who are systematically oppressed, we can contribute in some small way to transforming this volatile situation."

CPT does not advocate the use of violent force to save our lives should we be kidnapped, held hostage, or caught in the middle of a conflict situation.

So, the CPT would stand on principle and allow their representatives in Iraq to die rather than risk the lives of the terrorists that took them in a rescue operation? A perverse sense of Christian morality in my book.

Advice to CPT from a long-time hostage activist: trying to convince the hostage takers that you are on their side may work, depending on what type of group abducted your representatives. Arab nationalist, non-Salaafist jihadis, and Shia jihad groups may be convinced using this method but only if a simultaneous public campaign from clerics is undertaken. To do this you must release the names of the other victims.

Of course, if this was simply a criminal act then the above should be undertaken in addition to ransom negotiations. Many criminals who engage in hostage taking of Westerners do so with the justification (backed by certain Islamic traditions) that the ransoming of infidels is permitted. Shame from influential clerics can go along way in convincing criminals to release hostages.

However, if it was Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq, Ansar al-Sunna, or any related Salaafist jihad organization then this will have no effect. The only hope would be a rescue. Fortunately if the hostages are located a rescue will be attempted, even over the objections of CPT.

UPDATE: Via Captain Ed, we learn that Norman Kember was a family friend of blogger Hammerswing. As mentioned in our earlier post, we join Hammerswing with our prayers for Kember, even if we think he was a misguided idealist.

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

German Woman Taken Hostage in Iraq

UPDATE: The Jawa Report has learned that the name of the woman is Susanne Osthoff. More on Osthoff here.

A German woman has been taken hostage in Iraq. The image right shows the woman and her driver as they appeared in a hostage video. The woman's name has not been released. We will publish her name and the name of her driver as soon as they are known.

According to ADNKI the woman was an archeologist and was abducted with her driver near Ninevah.

Further:

The kidnappers sent a video to the broadcaster's offices in Baghdad in which they showed the hostages and threatened to kill the woman if the German government does not suspend every form of cooperation with the Iraqi government.

The video shows a woman and a man blindfolded and on their knees. Nearby are three armed men with their faces covered. The woman has a chain around her neck, with her passport attached to it.

The German Foreign Ministry has confirmed that the archaeologist and her driver have been missing since Friday. "We are doing everything possible to guarantee the safety of the woman," a spokesman said. "We are in contact with all the offices of the government of Iraq to confirm what has happened."

So, archeology is considered "collaboration" by the salaafist jihadis these days?

Hat tip to Dread Pundit Bluto who has more.

Developing........

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

Wrong war, wrong place, wrong time

A revalation came to me this morning in the form of an email from Amawalk John. I have finally figured out what the Democrats mean by "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time." But before we get to that, let's play a game. I'm going to give you a list of quotes and you see if you can tell me who they belong to. The answers will be in the additional section of this article.

  1. He will rebuild his arsenel of weapons of mass destruction. Some day, somewhere, I am certain, he will use that arsenel again as he has ten times since 1983.
  2. Saddam Hussein certainly has chemical and biological weapons. There's no question about that.
  3. There's unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons. And will likely have nuclear weapons in the next five years. We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress that Saddam has been able to make in the development of weapons of mass destruction.
  4. He continues to attempt to gain access to additional capability including nuclear capability. There is a real debate on how far off that is. Whether it is a matter of years or whether it is a matter of less than that.
  5. Good Evening. Earliear today I ordered America's armed forces to strike military and security targets in Iraq. Their mission is to attack Iraq's nuclear, biological and chemical weapons programs. Saddam Hussein must not be allowed to threaten his neighbors or the world with nuclear arms, poison gas or biological weapons.
  6. Other countries posess weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles. With Saddam, there's one big difference. He has used them. Not once, but repeatedly. And I have no doubt today that left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will use these terrible weapons again.
  7. Inspectors are saying that even if they could stay in Iraq their work would be a sham. Saddam's deception has defeated their effectiveness. Instead of the inspectors disarming Saddam, Saddam has disarmed the inspectors.
  8. The hard fact is that as long as Saddam is in power, he threatens the well-being of his people, the peace of the region, the security of the world. The best way to end that threat, once and for all, is with a new Iraqi government. A government willing to live in peace with its neighbors. A government that respects the lives of its people.
  9. The decision to use force is never cost free. Whenever American forces are placed in harm's way, we risk the loss of life. And while our strikes are focused on Iraq's military capabilities, there will be unintended Iraqi casualties.
  10. Heavy as they are, the costs of action must be weighed against the price of inaction.
  11. Saddam will strike again at his neighbors. He will make war on his own people. Mark my words. He will develop weapons of mass destruction. He will deploy them. And he will use them.

1. Sandy Berger
2. Nancy Pelosi
3. Jay Rockafeller
4. Joe Biden
5 - 11. Bill Clinton

So why are these quotes important to the "wrong war" statement? Well, all of these statements were said during the Clinton administration. They are the Democratic leaders coming out in favor of military action against Iraq and against Saddam's weapons of mass destruction while Clinton was President. So don't EVER again let a democratic senator or congressman lie to you and tell you that George Bush lied to him. They had the idea that Saddam had wmd's long before Bush ever got into office. That's a little fact that they'd seem to like you to forget.

So when a Democrat says "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time" what they're really saying is "we didn't get a chance to wage this exact same war and now we're mad." Anything else is just a lie.

All of the quotes above come from this clip sent to me by Amawalk John. Listen to it for yourself. Then decide who's REALLY against the war.

By at 08:16 AM | Comments |

Ramsey Clark blogburst

I don't really understand this. All of a sudden everyone's all, "Whoa! Can you believe Ramsey Clark is going to defend Saddam? What a scumpuppet!"

Yes, he's an America-hating turd, but I thought I knew that already. And sure enough, we've been talking about his representing Saddam here on the Jawa Report for quite a while--since December of 2004, in fact.

I'm just wondering why this is news again.

By See-Dubya at 04:28 AM | Comments |

November 28, 2005

The Fruits of Anti-American Peace Activism: Kidnapping and Hostage Taking

norman_kember.jpgBackground on the hostage taking here.

What do Giuliana Sgrena and abducted 'humanitarian' worker Norman Kember (pictured right at a Hiroshima memorial) have in common?

Both went to Iraq to promote "peace".

Both decided to work for "peace" by documenting allegations of prisoner abuse and mass-murder by American forces in Fallujah.

Both thought it would be a good idea to meet with 'victims' of America and that their sympathies with the 'resistance' would make them immune.

Both ended up being taken hostage by the 'resistance'.

Our deepest sympathies are with Norman Kember and the American and two Canadians taken hostage with him. But, wasn't it a little foolish to believe your own rhetoric? The U.S. military is in Iraq to help the Iraqis. If civilians are killed or innocents detained by the U.S., these are regretful mistakes. Errors made in the fog of war.

But when the so-called insurgents kill civilians and take hostages--only to murder them later by proclaiming them guilty of violating Islamic law--they do this on purpose.

It is the policy of the United States of America and Great Britain to avoid civilian casualties when possible. It is the policy of al Qaeda and other mujahidin forces in Iraq to kill civilians, on purpose, when such civilians are deemed too eager to help rebuild that country.

For the peace activists of the Left, there is no distinction between an American soldier and an al Qaeda in Iraq suicide-bomber.

That distinction should be clear now to Norman Kember and the other victims of jihadi fanaticism in Iraq.

We pray for their safe return.

Norman Kember archives here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 06:36 PM | Comments |

Deep Thoughts By Jack Straw

Interesting quote of British Foreign Minister Jack Straw:

“We are working on the basis that it is indeed a kidnapping. But we have no further confirmation,” he said.

I never have, and never will be a conspiracy theorist, but this is interesting as well:

Pat Kember said that her husband was representing a number of different organisations when he was taken. Yesterday she was seen leaving the family home in North London escorted by police.

I figure there's a 99.9% chance that this is SOP.

But after reading Rusty and Bluto, I have to admit that something smells Vichy around here.

By Vinnie at 06:30 PM | Comments |

(UPDATED) American Among Those Kidnapped With Peace Activists in Iraq

UPDATE 11/29 A.M.: Christian Peacemakers has confirmed to The Jawa Report that the hostages were indeed taken from their organization. However, at this time, Christian Peacemakers has declined to release the names of the one American and two Canadian hostages.

Related: German woman taken hostage in Iraq, hostage video released.

Developing.........

UPDATED: Scroll down for updates. "Humanitarian" group named in MSM actually a peace activist group there to monitor U.S. and Iraqi 'abuses'. This story is becoming more and more like the Giuliana Sgrena drama as facts are slowly uncovered.

The so-called aid workers were actually part of a peace organization which focuses on alleged U.S. abuses. Which is the one political party that this 'peace' organization decides to meet in Baghdad? The Iraqi Communist Party.

Scroll down for more specifics and updates
-----------------------------

An American was among the Westerners kidnapped in Iraq over the weekend as reported earlier here and here. The U.S. State Department continues its insane policy of not releasing the name of the kidnapped victim. We will report his name and the name of the two Canadians as soon as we get word.

More information about Norman Kember is below.

Tribune-Democrat:

An American citizen is missing in Iraq, the U.S. Embassy said Monday, apparently one of four humanitarian workers reported kidnapped a day earlier.
As reported earlier by Bluto, by "humanitarian workers" the article means "peace activists." This is earily remindful of Giuliana Sgrena, Simona Pari and Simona Torretta all of whom were taken hostage and then later relesed because of their pro-terrorist views.
U.S. Embassy spokeswoman Elizabeth Colton said only that an American had been reported missing. The person's name was not immediately released. Dan McTeague, parliamentary secretary for Canadians abroad, also refused identify the Canadians, their organization or the location where they were kidnapped to protect their safety.
Here is some more information in addition to what Bluto recorded here about Norman Kember, the only hostage who has been positively identified.

Norman Kember was an officer in the Baptist Peace Fellowship which proclaims:

The FELLOWSHIP was founded as a fellowship of Baptist ministers with pacifist convictions; later it was expanded to include all Baptist Pacifists, and in 1940 became affiliated to the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FoR).

WE AIM to provide a fellowship for Baptists who feel constrained by their Christian faith to renounce war and to stir the minds and consciences of our fellow Baptists so that they may come to see that military force cannot be reconciled with the teaching of Jesus Christ and His acceptance of the Cross; to work at all times for reconciliation, justice and the things that make for peace in national, community, church and personal life.

WE BELIEVE that we will be led to witness in ways appropriate to the conditions in which we find ourselves. Like the early Christians we endeavour to talk to those whom we meet about the good news of the gospel of the Prince of Peace.

So, on the one hand he's a peacenick, but on the other hand we have this letter from him in which he talks of joining an evangelical peace group willing to give up their lives testifying of Christ. Such evangelizing is forbidden in even the moderate forms of Islam--the penalty is death. He quotes the movement which he seems to be about to join thus
We must prepare to die by the thousands
So, he was a radical fundamentalist Christian, prepared to be killed for his beliefs. Unfortunately, he may find himself a martyr before long.

As always, The Jawa Report will be following this hostage story carefully. Please e-mail tips to mypetjawa-at-gmail-dot-com.

UPDATE: Here is a picture of Norman Kember at a Hiroshima vigil. He is the on the right.

norman_kember.jpg

In response to Rhonda's comments that Kember would never try and evangelize a Muslim, I offer this, penned by Norman Kember himself:

Peace people may spend rather a lot of time talking to the 'converted'. We work and pray for new conversions!
Of course, he was talking about 'conversions' to peace--which makes one wonder exactly what the Christian peace movement's agenda is? Is it to convert people to Christ--a sign of which is pacificism? Or is it to convert people to pacifism--in which case Christ is, well, exactly what?

My reading of Kember's public statements is that he is a committed Christian pacifist in the Mennonite. Jehovah's Witness or Quaker sense. As such he is a perfect example of Christian fundamentalism vs. Islamic fundamentalism. Christian fundamentalists take Jesus' 'turn the other cheek' and Paul's exhortation to Roman soldiers to 'do no violence' very seriously and, indeed, are willing to die for their beliefs but never kill for them (in the Catholic tradition, Augustine is a good example).

Muslim fundamentalists, on the other hand, follow the example and teachings of Muhammed perfectly when they kill.

Hence 'religious fundamentalism' is not really that big of a problem when the religion is fundamentally pacifist. The Dali Lama is another good example of a person taking his religion seriously, yet posing no threat of violence.

UPDATE II: WRAL:

The four were believed to be affiliated with Christian Peacemakers, one of the few Western humanitarian organizations still operating in Iraq. The organization's Web site states that among other things, the group seeks to expose and document abuses of Iraqis by U.S. and coalition forces.
In addition to their involvement in Iraq, Christian Peacemakers sends activists to Arizona to protest U.S. border policy.

Kenberer and the other hostages would have been part of this group, scheduled to be in Iraq from Nov. 17th to Dec. 1st:

As Iraq continues to suffer under unstable and difficult conditions, delegates will meet with representatives of nongovernmental organizations, fledgling Iraqi civil society groups, the US military, and others, to assess the current situation. They will may visit hospitals, schools, mosques, and churches, and will talk with Iraqis whose loved ones have been detained by US forces or under the previous regime. Based primarily in Baghdad, the delegation may travel to outlying areas.

COST: US $3000 US, which includes round-trip airfare.

If you don't recall, Giuliana Sgrena was interviewing refugees from Fallujah about U.S. 'attrocities' in that city when she was first abducted. This group must have had dealings with Sgrena in the past as they also have been active in the campaign to portray the U.S. clearing of murderous clerics from Fallujah (more here, here, here, and here) in the worst light.

Here is the scenario as it might have happened. A group of peace activists (dubbed 'aid workers' by MSM) go to Iraq trying to prove that the U.S. are the bad guys in Iraq. They then go and talk with the 'resistance' who they believe are the good guys. They are shocked when some terrorists show up at meeting with 'resistance' and kidnap them.

Possibly outcome? a) Sgrena scenario--terrorists release infidels after they have been paid off and realize hostages are really allies b) Enzo Baldoni scenario--terrorists don't care that hostages there to help, behead the infidels c) rescued by U.S. forces

Another Update: Ekklesia:

Kidnappee Professor Norman Kember, aged 74, is a long-time advocate of nonviolence. He has been involved both in the Baptist Peace Fellowship and in Fellowship of Reconciliation (FoR), an international network of religious pacifists.

An opponent of war and occupation in Iraq, Professor Kember had decided to join a two-week visit to the insurgency-torn country.

He had been telling friends, and wrote in a recent FoR newsletter, that he could not remain a spectator any longer. He understood the risks involved, he said.

The team he was working in was established by Mennonites and other historic peace churches in North America. It works to build trust and cooperation among conflicting groups, and works through the invitation and agency of local peace, social justice and human rights workers.

Local security forces and a multinational hostage team are currently searching for all four humanitarian workers.

Speaking on Channel 4 News (UK) this evening, Bruce Kent – a high profile peace campaigner, former Catholic priest, and close friend of Norman Kember – said that he was a strong and resourceful person.

It is uncertain whether the professor has been captured by a group with a political motive, or by one of the hundreds of criminal gangs seeking to make money out of hostage taking in a lawless environment.

Asked whether it was foolish to venture into Iraq under such volatile conditions, Mr Kent said that Professor Kember’s Christian faith and peacemaking convictions were such that he was prepared to take risks which other might regard as unwise.

A spokesperson for the Baptist Peace fellowship said that he was a man who lived out his beliefs with courage and compassion.

Notice that the man's kidnapping is blamed on 'volatile conditions'--a stealth way of blaming the U.S. for destabilizing the country. I'd like to see Kember try the same type of activism directed toward the ruling regime under Saddam Hussein. Why not blame the peace group for its naivite for meeting with anti-Coalition forces?

Yet Another Update: This time from the Independent:

His group, who were investigating human rights abuses, had reportedly been travelling with "minimal security" when they were seized in the west of the city after dark on Saturday.

The men were in the final days of a two-week fact-finding trip with a Canada-based humanitarian organisation, Christian Peacemaker Teams (PCT). The group, which was working with Iraqi groups and was not involved in missionary work, had been due to return on Friday.

How does a 'Christian' group not engage in missionary activity? Very odd, indeed. More
The Rev Alan Betteridge, president of the UK Baptist Peace Fellowship, who has known Mr Kember for more than 40 years, said: "Norman is a very committed worker for non-violence and peacemaking. He is a very gentle man, quiet, with a good sense of humour.

"He does not try to force his views on people - a listener rather than a talker and very committed to what he believes. I hope he has the opportunity to tell his captors about his work."

CPT, a pacifist group based in Toronto which cites the removal of coalition forces from Iraq as one of its aims, declined to comment on the abductions.

This despite the fact that a previous delegation had learned that the Iraqis don't want the U.S. to leave right away. From a report filed by a CPT group just back from Iraq. Notice the double-talk:
Virtually all Iraqi's we talked to would like for US troops to leave. now. Most that we talked with said that they know immediate with drawl is impractical in that they believe a civil war will result if the troops leave now. Few had a real passion about the US troops leaving right now [italics mine].
More from the Independent:
Mr Kember was part of a delegation of around eight people who had gone to Iraq to meet local human rights campaigners and assist with the setting up of a Muslim peacemakers' organisation. The organisation had sent four previous civilian delegations to Iraq.
Others: Chad at ITB, Unpartisan, Gung Ho, Dissonance and Disrespect, Politechnical

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 12:25 PM | Comments |

Levin a Fantasy

Ok I did see FNS yesterday. Carl Levin started off pretty good but then drifted to the same old same old. Chris Wallace did a pretty good job on the Senator but I have one statement in particular that bothered me a bit.

FOXNEWS: LEVIN: Yes, but what he also said in the same sentence was that Saddam Hussein would like nothing more than to use a terrorist network to attack and to kill, and that is not what the intelligence was, which said that Saddam Hussein was, quote, "intensely secular, wary of Islamic revolutionary movements."

OK Carl let see what Howie can do with that. Saddam was intensely wary of Islamic movements challenging his power in Iraq I can agree with that. But his support of Hamas is well documented. See links below. So what does Hamas have to do with Al-Qaeda? See this post and check the links to understand how this works. Al-Qaeda is an offshoot of Hamas’ military wing the The Abdellah Azzam Brigades. Read this and you begin to see the loose relationship. Even Hamas itself is leery of its stepchild. For instance after the bombings in Egypt last summer the Abdellah Azzam Brigades claimed responsibility but that claim was quickly replaced by another claim by an unknown group to downplay the relationship. Hamas’ attempts to become a political party are haunted by its past. So while Saddam was careful to keep control of Iraq he supported terrorist activity outside Iraq and lent aid as he could to those who seek to kill Jews and Americans. We don’t often think about the fact that Al-Qaeda was born of the Palestinian conflict. It’s apparent when Egypt gets bombed but more subtle when the US, England or Iraq is attacked but it’s there none the less.

Need more?
try this
or this
or this
or maybe here
or there
and here
and here too.


By Howie at 11:54 AM | Comments |

Al Qaeda Linked Propagandist Captured

Counter-propaganda has always been this blogs main focus. Propaganda is every bit as much a weapon as an IED or an AK-47 and propagandists should be considered combatants and therefore legitimate military targets. Propaganda gives our enemies a reason to fight, recruits new soldiers, and convinces them of the possibility of victory.

It's good to see one more terrorist propagandist has been captured. If the U.S. would take the propaganda war seriously they would close down any and all media outlets which distribute the type of propaganda made by the jihadis. Unfortunately we have seen a lack of resolve by the government in targetting jihadi forums and websites.

From an MNF-Iraq press release (hat tip to Sucram):

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Acting on multiple intelligence sources and tips from concerned citizens, Coalition forces raided a suspected Jaysh al-Mujahideen terrorist safe house in Abu Ghurayb, west of Baghdad, Oct. 23.

Captured during the raid was Ahmad Ni’mah Khudayyir Abbas (aka. Abu Shihab), a recently identified Jaysh al-Mujahideen lieutenant who oversaw the propaganda cell and who commanded several mortar and improvised explosive device cells.

Abu Shihab, as the propaganda chief for the Jaysh al-Mujahideen media cell operating in the Baghdad area, initially recorded videos and digitized them to compact disc for distribution to various Jaysh al-Mujahideen and al Qaeda in Iraq terrorist groups. These videos would then be downloaded to various Jihadist web sites as propaganda against Iraqi security and coalition forces.

Additionally, the videos would be used to recruit terrorists and foreign fighters, as well as to provide information on potential targets for other terrorists. As his skills and terrorist connections developed, he began directing and coordinating media operations throughout the Baghdad area for Jaysh al-Mujahideen.

Abu Shihab’s multi-media and organizational skills propelled him to the highest tier within Jaysh al-Mujahideen. Once he became a lieutenant to the Emir of Jaysh al-Mujahideen, he assumed responsibility for a myriad of terrorist duties. Besides overseeing Jaysh al-Mujahideen media operations, Abu Shihab was responsible for the coordination of weapons, explosive purchases and the distribution of money to different terrorist cells, as well as the official record keeping of the organization’s terrorist activities.

Abu Shihab was also in command of several terrorist cells in the Baghdad area, specifically mortar and IED cells. He admitted to conducting numerous bombings and mortar attacks against Iraqi security and coalition forces.

Abu Shihab admitted to being involved in the swindling of money from Iraqi citizens. He, as well as other Jaysh al-Mujahideen terrorists, would represent a local Baghdad charity they set up specifically to funnel donations to Jaysh al-Mujahideen.

One method of garnering donations from local citizens, according to Abu Shihab, was to stage pictures with children and young adults highlighting the “charity’s” name and logo in the background. The pictures would be shown to the Iraqis to solicit money supposedly in support of youth education and religious study; these donations would then be used to support terrorist operations in the Baghdad area.

The Jaysh al-Mujahideen terrorist organization, which is centrally controlled in Baghdad, also has terrorist cells in major cities in Iraq, to include Mosul, Fallujah, Ramadi; Jaysh al-Mujahideen is associated with al Qaeda in Iraq.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:29 AM | Comments |

U.S. Border Patrol Uniforms "Made in Mexico"

U.S. Border Patrol agents, charged with patrolling and assuring the security of the U.S.-Mexican border, are understandably angered by the fact that their uniforms are made in Mexico. Their pants and shirts even display labels stating "Made in Mexico." And, it's not just the irony of the situation that's troubling, the agents are concerned about the impact on border security.

From KFMB.com:

Agents and lawmakers are concerned about the consequences if the uniforms for agents charged with combating illegal immigration fall into the hands of criminals or terrorists.

"If we're manufacturing uniforms in Mexico, what's to stop someone from walking across the border in a Border Patrol uniform?" asked Rep. John Carter, a Republican from Round Rock. "How do you know who are our guys and who are their guys?"

Good question. Although impersonating a law enforcement officer is illegal in the U.S., I have no confidence that the same holds true in Mexico. In fact, for those with enough money for bribes, nothing is illegal in Mexico.

A company based in Nashville, Tennessee, called VF Solutions supplies the uniforms and subcontracts work to Mexico and other countries. VF Solutions has been providing Mexican-made uniforms to the Border Patrol for about a year with no instances of misuse reported. Customs officials assert that security measures, including on-site inspections at the Mexican production facility, are in place. Excuse me for not feeling warm and fuzzy about this. It's Mexico, dammit! You can't rely upon anything south of the border except for the paramount importance of the U.S. dollar.

Congress is expected to address enhancements to border security soon. Rep. Rick Renzi, R-Ariz., and Rep. Carter plan to introduce a measure which would require that U.S. Border Patrol uniforms be made in the United States. I think it's a good idea. Criminals and terrorists don't need to be facilitated in their lawbreaking and being able to obtain Border Patrol uniforms does just that. And if they can't be made in the U.S., at least take the "Made in Mexico" label off the garments. I can easily understand why some agents might start each work shift with an attitude of anger and frustration.

"Badges? Badges? We don't need no stinking badges. We've got uniforms."

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 04:51 AM | Comments |

The Third Option

As Vinnie mentioned below, the British hostage has been named. Here's a little background on him:

Iraq War Resister Among Those Abducted
Among the four Westerners kidnapped yesterday in Iraq (the BBC describes them as "aid workers") is Briton Norman Kember:

Professor Kember, who is believed to be in his 70s, was said to be representing a number of humanitarian aid groups.
Professor Kember is of the "violence never settled anything" school of thought. Immediately after the al Qaeda terrorist attacks of September 11. 2001, War Resisters International began gathering signatures on this statement. Excerpts:
We are deeply shocked and outraged by the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11th. Equally, we condemn the so-called war on terrorism.
And they named their, hmm, enemy? Do radical pacifists consider people "enemies"? Probably not. They likely have some bland euphemism to indicate conflict. In any case, their bone to pick is with Dubya, who else? [emphasis added]
Confronted by President George W. Bush with the choice: "If you are not with us, you are with the terrorists", we choose a third option: nonviolence.
Kember is a signatory to this denial of reality, number 21.

Can you say irony? These folks don't believe in violence, but it appears violence believes in them. The way I see it, that leaves three options to win Kember's freedom.

First, a ransom can be paid to the kidnappers. The money paid will then be used to purchase the tools of terrorism, ensuring that more people die violently in Iraq. Perhaps the terrorists will buy some toys to booby-trap.

The second option is for Coalition and Iraqi soldiers to rescue them. The soldiers will have to put their own lives on the line to accomplish this, of course, and some terrorists are likely to die in the process. I shed no tears for dead terrorists, but Professor Kember and his mates might.

Norman Kember's third option is to lie down and die.

Also posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto, who is violently opposed to non-violence.

By Bluto12:41 AM | Comments |

The Islamofascist Version Of Women And Children First

I've been gone all week, so I saw little news. I do remember seeing a snippet about a suicide bombing, but didn't read anything about it.

I wish I had.

BAGHDAD, Nov. 24 -- A suicide attacker steered a car packed with explosives toward U.S. soldiers giving away toys to children outside a hospital in central Iraq on Thursday, killing at least 31 people. Almost all of the victims were women and children, police said.

If I end up in Hell, I only hope it's in the same cell as Zarqawi.

CP@VAM

By Vinnie at 12:36 AM | Comments |

It Ain't Gonna Work This Time Either, Fellas

2 Canadians, 1 American, and 1 Brit taken hostage:

Nov 27, 2005 — BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Four Western aid workers, two believed to be from Canada, one from Britain and one from the United States, have been kidnapped in Iraq, the organization they were working for said on Sunday.

The only hostage identified positively is the Briton:

It is understood Professor Norman Kember was snatched in Baghdad along with two Canadians and an American. The Foreign Office is investigating.

Professor Kember, from north-west London, was said to be representing a number of humanitarian aid groups.

His wife Pat, at home in Pinner, said: "People are being very, very good to me and I'm being supported."

I'm sure we'll update this as the others are named. In any case, we wish their families the very best and pray for their safe return.

By Vinnie at 12:00 AM | Comments |

November 27, 2005

Still Think Liberals Don't Hate Conservatives?

In what's becoming a busy day for me and blogging (unusual for a Sunday) a new blogger friend of mine pointed something out to me that he knew would get me fired up.

Real Teen at Right on the Right is taking some heat for his article about the US Post Office's opposition to Christmas. You know you've struck a chord with liberals when they attack you personally like one liberal did to Real Teen.

Jazz over at Running Scared called Real Teen a Hitler Youth. That's civil discourse at its finest in a liberal's mind:

The story which got poor Roger's dander floating up into the air conditioning vents was the plaintive wailing of Darlene over a story (sourced by no less an august source than her mom) that the Post Office would issue new holiday stamps this year. They allegedly went with a "Holiday Cookies" theme instead of pictures of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus. This not only enraged Roger, saddened Darlene's Mom (soon to be named the new managing editor of Knight Ridder, I believe), and sent Darlene scurrying for her keyboard, but got Ann Coulter Althouse into a tizzy and sent the Hitler Bush Youth bustling off to strap on their jackboots and take to the streets.

Of course, this is nothing new for liberals that wished death upon Vice President Cheney when he visited a hospital. However, to not only call someone a nazi but to also call someone facist as if that's a trait of the right side of the political spectrum shows how uneducated you really are and how guided you are by your hatred.

Originally Posted at Conservative Thinking

By at 01:48 PM | Comments |

Bruce Willis Supports the Troops

According to Ace of Spades and RightFaith, the pro-military actor, Bruce Willis, will be making a movie righting the wrongs of MSM bias regarding the war in Iraq.

Bruce Willis comes out fighting for Iraq’s forgotten GI heroes (Times Online):

ANGERED by negative portrayals of the conflict in Iraq, Bruce Willis, the Hollywood star, is to make a pro-war film in which American soldiers will be depicted as brave fighters for freedom and democracy.

It will be based on the exploits of the heavily decorated members of Deuce Four, the 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry, which has spent the past year battling insurgents in the northern Iraqi town of Mosul.

That's the Deuce Four of Michael Yon fame.

Willis attended Deuce Four’s homecoming ball this month in Seattle, Washington, where the soldiers are on leave, along with Stephen Eads, the producer of Armageddon and The Sixth Sense.

[...]

“I am baffled to understand why the things I saw happening in Iraq are not being reported,” he told MSNBC, the American news channel.

He is expected to base the film on the writings of the independent blogger Michael Yon, a former special forces green beret who was embedded with Deuce Four and sent regular dispatches about their heroics.

There is a lot of good, solid info in the news article referenced here. However, I like Bruce Willis and I will definitely add this movie to my list of ones I will actually see in the movie theaters.

Originally Posted at Conservative Thinking

By at 12:34 PM | Comments |

November 26, 2005

The Next Great Liberal Freak Out

I really shouldn't give this story any justice but I should at least point it out:

Pentagon Expanding Its Domestic Surveillance Activity

By at 11:17 PM | Comments |

Iran Offers to Trade N. Korea Oil For Nuclear Missiles

Some news for those who mocked the President when he spoke of the "Axis of Evil". Iran's insane hardline president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, is seeking a trade deal with fellow lunatic North Korean president Kim Jong-il. Oil and natural gas for nuclear missiles.

From Haaretz:

BERLIN - Iran has offered North Korea oil and natural gas as payment for help in developing nuclear missiles, German weekly magazine Der Spiegel reported on Saturday, citing unidentified Western intelligence sources.

A senior Iranian official traveled to the North Korean capital Pyongyang during the second week of October to make the offer, the magazine quoted the sources as saying. It was unclear what North Korea's response was, it added.

It's doubtful that the United States will be able to mount an effective conventional response, now that liberals and other conspirators within the mainstream media have managed to weaken national resolve by misreporting Iraq War news in hopes of influencing next year's mid-term elections.

By Bluto08:51 PM | Comments |

Help a Sista Out

I promised myself I'd lay off the blogging for the long weekend and to celebrate my Sainted Mother's birthday today, but I got a message from Dave at Garfield Ridge about a blogger in need.

Jennifer, of Demure Thoughts, has a sick little girl and could use some donations. Please donate via pay pal if help if you can.

I figure this is ironic justice since I had been joking all week about voluntarily getting my gall bladder removed so that my body wouldn't absorb any more fat calories. It seemed funny at the time when directed at a colleague who couldn't eat my wife's pecan pie. Karmic justice is life's little bitch.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:16 PM | Comments |

Patterico and the Phantom Satanists

Occasionally I drop a post or mind the store over at Patterico's Pontifications. Patterico, for those of you who don't get over there often, is a prosecutor in a large city in Southern California. No, not San Diego. This week he's been discussing the idea of holding the prosecution to a higher standard in death penalty cases--something beyond "reasonable doubt" he's tentatively calling "beyond all possible doubt".

I don't want to show up and diss the guy on his own blog--that's like...like... banging a guy's girlfriend in his own Firebird--so I'll register my differences over here.

First, Patterico doesn't really offer much reason to justify the change. He had a post a while back about what might have been an innocent man executed in Texas, but I'm not certain how a tougher standard of proof would have saved him. After all, this was someone who according to this account of the case may have known the identity of the real killer, yet refused to disclose it. He could have induced a reasonable doubt about the prosecution's case, but he chose not to.

Second, how would you really quantify a standard stricter than "beyond a reasonable doubt"? Even if you don't use the "possible doubt" construction, you've still changed the rules to require proving reasonable doubt plus...something. What is that something?

It's not really kosher, as a matter of law or as a matter of statistics, to quantify the percentage of doubt about a defendant's guilt. After all, can you really distinguish between being ninety-five percent certain and ninety-nine percent certain about, say, what your girlfriend tells you about how the windshield got broken in your Firebird? She says she hit a bat while driving at night, but the crack might be from the inside, where a shoe heel could...no, no, you're pretty sure you believe her.

Ninety five? Ninety nine? Do those numbers mean anything? Does the difference between them really make a difference?

Reasonable doubt is more a concern about the quality of a doubt than a percentage of certainty. Does this doubt make any sense? Is it reasonable? Or is it groundless? Is it laughable to have this kind of uncertainty about this case?

REASONABLE DOUBT: These eyewitnesses only saw the guy for three seconds on a foggy night. They could be mistaken.
UNREASONABLE DOUBT: Since these three eyewitnesses have Jewish surnames, I think the Mossad is trying to set this defendant up, even though no evidence suggesting that has come up.

I don't think the state should have to defend against less than reasonable theories and criticisms of its case. Just because some hotshot defense lawyer can pull a doubt out of his wazoo does not automatically make that doubt reasonable. But raising the bar on the prosecution will encourage them to try every outlandish scheme and theory in the book. They try them already, sure, but even the defense has an obligation to make utterly fantastic stories into reasonable ones before the state is required to refute them. Besides, quite often the unreasonable is irrefutable.

For example, I remember one of the possibilities hinted at by Mark Geragos in the course of the Scott Peterson murder trial was that a group of Satanists had kidnapped and ritually sacrificed Lacey Peterson.

Possible? Yes. It's not impossible. Reasonable? Not really. It's slightly more believable than aliens, but as a serious alternative to a well-detailed, solidly prosecuted case against Peterson, it's a phantom. It wasn't worth the prosecution's time to answer that baseless theory.

I don't see how Patterico's new standard is going to keep the equivalent of those phantom Satanists out of the courtroom in every death penalty case.

Excuse me. There's some dude outside in a Firebird and he looks peeved.

By See-Dubya at 04:33 AM | Comments |

November 25, 2005

Vermont Teacher Under Fire For Gross Liberal Bias

From the Boston Globe:

BENNINGTON, Vt. --The school superintendent whose district includes Mount Anthony Union High School has labeled "inappropriate" and "irresponsible" an English teacher's use of liberal statements in a vocabulary quiz.

"I wish Bush would be (coherent, eschewed) for once during a speech, but there are theories that his everyday diction charms the below-average mind, hence insuring him Republican votes," said one question on a quiz written by English and social studies teacher Bret Chenkin.

Here's a question for Chenkin:

"A teacher would be of (below-average, unsound) mind to endanger his job over his own (radical, infantile) political views."

It certainly takes a well-below-average mind to think that teenagers are going to keep quiet about it. The school superintendent is not amused:

Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union Superintendent Wesley Knapp said he would not want his children subjected to such teaching.

"It's absolutely unacceptable," he said. "They (teachers) don't have a license to hold forth on a particular standpoint."

Knapp said he was recently informed of the situation and that it was a personnel issue that he took seriously.

Prepare yourselves for shrieks and lamentations from liberals everywhere.

After school, head for The Dread Pundit Bluto, where every liberal dork gets a free swirly.

By Bluto11:31 PM | Comments |

Are the Democrats Fox Crazy?

Donald Sensing provides one of the best arguments for an increasingly popular theory about the recent Democrat political machinations. He thinks there's method in their madness:

So, knowing that the plan was to redeploy troops beginning next year, the Democrats decided to get in front of the wave: Demand the troops be sent home NOW and then when the Pentagon announces the plan to redeploy, take credit for it.

The two prongs of the attack serve two purposes. The "Bush lied us into war" wing satisfies the huge numbers of the party's base suffering from Bush Derangement Syndrome. The "declare victory and go home" attack preserves, however weakly, the party's appeal to traditionally patriotic Democratic voters, of which there are also huge numbers. Doubtless the Dem leadership sees the attacks as a two-fer.

The appeals to both wings are intended to garner huge dividends in November 2006.

With any president but George W. Bush, they'd be wrong. But GWB is the easiest president to blind side that I have seen in my life.


The lynchpin of Rev. Sensing's theory is the observation (accurate in my view) that the Bush administration is composed of politically inept strategists and tacticians (more the latter than the former). So, if that's all it takes to give substance to his theory then he's home free. But there are a couple of nagging doubts:

1. For the Dems to have planned and strategized this dramaturge they'd have had to have the same opinion of the Bush political team as Donald and I. I just don't think that's the case. They've, for instance, expended huge portions of their political capital over the Plame case just to take out Rove, whom they regard as an evil genius with nearly invincible political acumen. And they, if anything, have lost ground as a result (thanks especially to Bob Woodward). And with such an overblown respect for the Rove "machine" they simply would never have considered the rope-a-dope script feasible.

2. It'd be easy to deflect such a strategy by simply observing, loudly and repeatedly, that what the President preserved was our discretion, in case conditions demanded a different draw-down rate. Yes, he always intended to draw down. He just wanted to keep our options open, as would any good Commander in Chief. Therefore a fixed draw-down wasn't a bad plan because the rate was either too fast or too slow, but because it was fixed: non-modifiable.

The Dems might, however, attempt to exploit the situation Rev. Sensing describes. it's true that their opinion of the typical American voter is so low that they don't believe voters capable of the nuance suggested in "2" above. But when it gets right down to it I just don't think they're right. The distinction between putting on blinders and keeping the blinders off isn't that hard to grasp. Besides I'd rather bet otherwise... because if the Dems are right about the voters we'll lose no matter how good the plan happens to be.

No, I think VDH is right. The smart Democrats haven't invested in the "Bush-lied-so-get-out-now" rhetoric, because the opposition's hand is far too strong and there's too much to lose.

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia)

By Demosophist at 12:14 PM | Comments |

Lessons Not Learned

"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana

Generals know how to fight wars. That's how they get to be Generals. It's not something that's just handed out. So when the General you put in charge of something starts telling you things, it's probably wise to listen. We didn't learn this lesson in Vietnam and it looks like we still haven't learned it.

Lt. General John R. Vines, commander of the Multinational Corps Iraq, disagrees with Congressman Murtha on the pullout of our troops from Iraq. Considering he is the one on the ground and in charge of making things happen, I think it would behoove our leadership to listen to what he has to say.

Lt. Gen. John R. Vines, who commands the Multinational Corps Iraq, said that 36 Iraqi battalions, about one-third of the total force, are now responsible for their own security sectors and can fight the insurgency. But they are not yet ready to operate totally independent of U.S. supply lines and tactical advice.

Because of that, he said, now is not the time for an American withdrawal.

"Iraqi security forces are able to conduct operations in a large portion of their area with only limited coalition support," Gen. Vines told Pentagon reporters via a teleconference from Baghdad. "They do require our support at this time. That support will be increasingly less over a period of time, but a precipitous pullout, I believe, would be destabilizing."

That, to me, sounds like good news. We've got a lot of troops trained and we're gradually moving things over to the Iraqis as they can handle them. Imagine for a moment that you would like to be a pilot. You go to the airport, sign up for lessons and get started. The instructor teaches you the basics of flying and how to take off, then takes you up for your first flight. Halfway through the flight, the instructor simply bails out. He hasn't taught you to land yet, but suddenly you're on your own. Sounds like a pretty messed up situation, doesn't it? And yet that's exactly what Congressman Murtha and his Democratic compadres propose doing to the Iraqis. And the exact same thing they forced us to do to the Vietnamese. It wasn't right then and it isn't right now.

The mistakes that the politicians made in Vietnam were fatal and avoidable. Certainly it was a brutal war, but does that make it not worth fighting? Wasn't our own Revolutionary war quite bloody? Did that keep the French from coming to our aid? Without them, we might still be paying taxes to Britan. Our future certainly would have come out very differently. Now it's time to give other people in the world the same chance. It's time to stop all the political bickering and get the job done right. Stop worrying about trying to score political points and listen to what your commanders are telling you. We've started a job. Let's finish it and prove to the world that we CAN learn from the mistakes we've made in the past.

By at 07:20 AM | Comments |

November 24, 2005

Finally: Slut

They finally called me a slut. After Zionist, CIA, tool of the opposition, Mason (?), unemployed, and ignorant, finally they accused me of a romantic relationship with an oppositionist. LMAO But that's STILL not as funny as "owner of a bad website."

By Jane at 08:39 PM | Comments |

Putting the Cart Before the Horse

I hadn't planned any serious posts for Thanksgiving. However, opening the local newsrag this morning to a snotty little piece of disinformation from New York Times political hack Paul Krugman (and no, I won't provide the link) changed my mind. Since the enemies within won't take a break today, neither will I.

From the Associated Press via Yahoo!News:

WASHINGTON - The Bush administration and military leaders are sounding optimistic notes about scaling back U.S. troops in Iraq next year, as public opposition to the war and congressional demands for withdrawal get louder.

While military leaders would not confirm the size of possible withdrawals, conversations with defense officials and analysts suggest troop levels could drop below 100,000 next year, contingent on the progress of the Iraqi government and its security forces. There are currently about 155,000 U.S. troops in Iraq.

Contingency plans of this complexity don't happen over the course of a few days, or even a few weeks. These plans have obviously been in the works for some time. Just as obviously, it isn't in the country's best interests for Islamist terrorists to know details about such plans, or even that they exist.

Now we know the reason for increasingly loud Democrat attacks on the Administration and the troops. Democrat leaders got wind of (were most likely consulted on) contingency plans to lower the number of troops, and made a cynical decision to create the illusion that any planned cutbacks were the result of their "protests", knowing of course, that they could depend on their water-carriers in the mainstream media to help them make the case.

I am continually amazed at the willingness of Democrat party leaders to put US troops at risk to further their own political schemes. Of course, as someone educated in the purported principles of journalism I'm continually amazed at the overwhelming number of "journalists" who are willing to aid and abet such schemes.

Also at The Dread Pundit Bluto. Get there before the tryptophan kicks in.

By Bluto10:55 AM | Comments |

Video Game Preview Review: Call of Duty 2

I used to be a total spazz for video games and computer games. I rarely have time or money for them anymore, but I enjoy them once and a while and try to keep up on the new stuff--which is why I downloaded, installed, and ran through the pre-release demo for Call of Duty II. (Warning! Loud, awesome trailer there.)

So I think that actually makes me more qualified than some complete techhead to review games meaningfully. What do I, as Joe Average who might kill two or three rainy evenings a year playing these things, think about this one?

I'll tell ya:

ATMOSPHERE: This is pretty intense, and it's frighteningly realistic. Bullets start whining by you and you really do get flustered--your head moves to dodge them. When you smack somebody with a rifle butt, your whole frame of reference shakes with the blow.

And even with my stuttery old PC, it looked like a movie. I'd say it was beautiful, but it's really pretty ghastly when your squadmates get blasted and pile up like driftwood, so I'll just say it's beautifully visualized. As someone who actually owned a Pong set as a small child, I am in awe of how this game looks and sounds. It's as close as I want to get to the real thing.

The enemy are smart, too. I got waxed several times when I thought I'd put a Jerry down, only to have him whip out a Luger and drill me as soon as I looked away. I took to doing the "just to make sure" shot like that marine in Fallujah, but with no Kevin Sites around to video me.

That said...

LINEARITY: This demo still has that carnival-funhouse-ride feeling of inevitability to it. Go here, shoot these guys, move to the next space, shoot these guys, pick up some weapons, go through the gate...the same order every time. It's too much like a movie in that respect. The demo involves an assault on El Daba in Egypt, and I found myself wanting to run down the alleys, climb stairs, kick doors, and try the same assault from different angles, with different plans. Because it's so beautifully rendered you want to be able to walk around in that world. I wanted to grab a Bren gun, scale the blasted minaret, and engage the enemy snipers at range from on high. Just tell me my objectives, and let me figure out how to do it.

Another example of the game's linearity is the German MG42 machine guns. You see the Krauts lugging these around and setting them up; then when they do, it's anchored in place and effectively useless because its arc of fire only covers where your troops used to be before you killed the gunner.

In this respect COD2 is inferior to the last game I played seriously, Ghost Recon. There you could move all over the map and complete your objectives the way you wanted to. Go in hot on the enemy camp, flush 'em out with grenades, or stealth 'em with suppressed weapons? The same scenario was interesting several times over for that reason.

Ghost Recon was, I guess, a different sort of game in that it was very much about programming and developing your squad to complete missions. That became kind of a bother since the AI controlling your squad was moronic and they'd usually stand there and let the commies shoot them. The way I played it it was more of a first-person shooter like COD2, but with much more freedom of movement.

It still didn't let you switch weapons and pick up ammo like you can in COD2, though, and it's nowhere near as cool-looking.

Bottom Line: I can't tell you go out and spend fifty bucks for it, but I do advise you to try that demo and just enjoy all the work that went into this game. As for me I plan to look for it in the bargain bin come September or so.

By See-Dubya at 03:04 AM | Comments |

My Man Stash B

I take some pride in being one of the blogosphere's biggest proponents of John Bolton's appointment to the U.N. Ambassadorship. Were I more inclined and less inebriated I'd back this up with a whole bunch of links, but you don't really care. Just go over to LGF and see why Johnny B's treatin' us right:

When asked what changed from Monday to Wednesday, one diplomatic official replied: “John Bolton,” a reference to the US ambassador to the UN.

Long live the 'stache!

By See-Dubya at 12:51 AM | Comments |

November 23, 2005

PETA's Message to Your Kids: "Mommy and Daddy Are Murderers"

Here's the latest campaign from the whackjobs at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals: comic books to pass out to your kids telling them that their parents are killers if they fish or eat meat. The comic book covers are below.

peta.jpg

The Dread Pundit Bluto's message to the children of PETA members: "Your parents are lunatics."

By Bluto07:28 PM | Comments |

November 22, 2005

Debra Lafave Gets Off

(Tampa, Florida) Debra Lafave pleaded guilty today to two counts of lewd and lascivious battery for having sex with a schoolboy. She originally planned to plead insanity but was encouraged to accept a plea deal with the stipulation that she would not go to jail. Lafave was facing a possible 15 years in prison on each charge if she went to trial. But there will be no trial and she gets no jail.

People should reject the delusion that Lafave's sentence is having the punishment fit the crime. She regularly had sex with a student with total diregard for the law and absolute refusal to exercise her responsibilities as a teacher. In my estimation, justice has not been served.

Pics and history at Interested-Participant.

By at 05:59 PM | Comments |

Bombing al Jazeera? Not a bad idea

Bush wanted to bomb al Jazeera. Okay. It's still not too late. It's not like The Jawa Report Editorial Board hasn't made the same suggestion on a number of occasions.

Here is the latest 'editorial' cartoon from al Jazeera. Remember, this is the English version which is far less critical of the U.S. than the Arabic. I've put the two frames together (the original is animated). Click for a larger view. It shows the U.N. watchdog interested in a basic chemistry expirement by Iran while ignoring the far more serious use of 'chemical weapons' by the U.S. in Afghanistan and Iraq.

This is why the insurgents fight us. Because they believe--exactly as the Left does--that America is guilty of the worst crimes. By characterizing the use of WP in Fallujah as 'chemical weapons' the critics are lumping the U.S. in with the worst and most despotic regimes in the world.

The same principle applies to those who accuse we on the Right of 'moral relatavism' and of 'not taking the moral high ground'.

The word torture, for instance, is used by the Left and by our enemies abroad to characterize certain interrogation techniques.

And because Jeff Goldstein is on effin fire lately, let me just throw a Goldstein quote in here as a response to the inevetable objection that I'm now defending torture:

One commenter even went so far as to say my arguments constituted a form of moral relativism—a charge I find completely uncredible: first, if one really is against torture, one should WANT to narrow the definition instead of adopting or accepting an expansive definition that hamstrings the pragmatic necessities of effective interrogation (which can include nothing more than a threat of coercion). To think of tactics like waterboarding or sleep deprivation as commensurate to rape rooms is troublesome, it seems to me—but that is exactly what one commits oneself to once one commits to a morally absolute stand on “torture” that abides such an expansive definition.

Because I don’t think all forms of suffering and anguish are equal—I am willing to draw distinctions where those who accept an expansive definition of “torture” cannot. And not being able to draw distinctions is where relativism comes in, I would argue.

Please Goldstein, don't hurt 'em.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:03 PM | Comments |

Kos and the Left Betray Our Troops and Nation

Dear Markos,

You and the Left are sounding more and more like al Jazeera every day. You're blind hatred of the Bush Administration is endangering the lives of U.S. soldiers and embolding our enemies to kill them.

I know you 'love' America, but your 'love' of America is like that of an abusive husband who 'loves' his wife. You 'love' America so much that you will not let any opportunity pass to belittle and abuse her. You 'love' America only when America acts in exactly the way in which you believe it should act. When America gets out of line, you pull no punches.

Whether you 'love' America is beside the point just as whether an abusive husband 'loves' his wife is irrelevant. What I and the rest of America want is less of your proclamations of love, and more evidence of it.

From reading your blog I have come to the inevetable conclusion that you 'love' America so much that you are willing to kill it. I know you have the best of intentions for our great nation, but so does the abusive husband who really didn't mean to kill that bitch wife of his, but, you know, she just up and made him soooo angry that he couldn't help himself.

You have betrayed America with your perverse love in the exact way that an abusive husband betrays a wife. You are a traitor.

Your latest screed on the use of white phosphorous by the U.S. military in Fallujah is really beyond the pale. Equivocating between the U.S. military and the Saddam Hussein regime is exactly what our terrorist enemies do in their propoganda. You say:

Saddam tortured, we torture. Saddam used WP chemical weapons against insurgents and civilians, we use WP chemical weapons against insurgents and civilians.
Jeff Goldstein responds to your the substance of your treasonous allegations here.

Perhaps you are unaware of this, but supporters of al Qaeda read blogs like yours and take them seriously. The reason they fight us in Iraq is that they believe, like you do, that the U.S. is the moral equivalent of Saddam Hussein. Each time you publish insane theories about the U.S. using chemical weapons, they eat it up.

If you actually believe that the U.S. is as bad as Saddam Hussein regime, then I suggest you grow a backbone and join the mujahidin in Iraq. The moral implications of your statements are that we are the bad guys. If such is the case, then the inevetable conclusion for you--or an Iraqi 'fence-sitter'--is that morality requires armed resistance to the U.S.

In fact, at a jihadi forum which I frequent, the terrorists and their supporters make the exact same argument that you are making. White phosphorous has become quite the hot topic lately 'proving' that the mujahidin are in the right and that the U.S. really is the Great Satan.

Thank you for legitimizing the jihadists and their belief system. They love Americans like you and use words like yours to benefit their recruitment efforts. See, they say, even the Americans now understand that their own government must be stopped.

Which is exactly the morally correct conclusion to reach if you actually believe the U.S. is guilty of systematic torture, mass murder, and the use of WMD against civilians.

If you believe this, though, than you have made yourself an enemy of the United States of America. No, not the Bush Administration, but the United States. The country which you love, but only insofar as she acts in the exact manner proscribed by you.

You are like so many member of the Communist Party USA in the late 1940s and 1950s who loved America so much that they gave our nuclear secrets to the Soviets. Their acts of treason, like yours, were done out of concern for the nation and for principle. They didn't hate the U.S., they loved it, but only to the extent that their love was conditioned on the U.S. acting in the exact way in which they thought it should act.

They, like you, believed a strong U.S. was a danger to world stability. Thus, in their own warped minds, giving the A-bomb to the Soviets was the only morally appropriate thing to do. It was for America's own good, they thought.

Markos, I don't mind it when you attack one of Bush's Supreme Court nominees. That's just domestic politics. But war is different. Tearing down our troops and comparing them to Hussein's murderous Republican Guard is outside the bounds of patriotic dissent.

And please don't hide behind your military service. Plenty of traitors have served in the United States armed forces and plenty of patriots have had no military experience. Benadict Arnold, Aaron Burr, and Lee Harvey Oswald all served with distinction before they betrayed the country. Bill Clinton, a patriot in my book, had no military record.

Last, you might argue that it is the actions of the troops that have disgraced our country and not your characterization of them. This is an idiotic thing to say when the morality of the actions are in dispute.

Using white phosphorous during a battle is a fact. Calling them WMD is a characterization---a choice of words meant to equivocate them with Saddam Hussein's gassing of the Kurds. It is your characterization--your choice of words--which degrades the soldiers who chose to use white phosphorous in the heat of battle to help the U.S. win victory over its enemies.

Facts are always morally neutral. It is human judgement that gives meaning to facts. By choosing to equivocate the use of white phosphorous to the gassing of the Kurds, you have morally judged our troops. You, in word and deed, have called our troops mass murderers. You have chosen to characterize them this way.

In light of that, I believe it would not be unfair to characterize you as a traitor. The kind of traitor that believes they are doing the right thing for the country that they love. But, alas, if you knew anything about traitors you would understand that the vast majority of them are well intentioned.

Cordially,

Rusty Shackleford

UPDATE: Apparently this has generated a lot of outrage. It should.

John Cole is pissed.
Confederate Yankee expresses righteouss indignation.
The Commissar, Dread Pundit Bluto, & Wunder Kraut agree.
Caedorioa has a slightly different nuance.
John at Castle Argghhh debunks the WP thing here.
Dean Esmay is right on here.
INDCent Bill makes up a new game out of this.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:01 AM | Comments |

Jawa Fraternity: Alpha Kappa Qaeda

What fraternity does Rusty Shackleford advise at the University of Texas, Arlen? Why Alpha Kappa Qaeda, of course! Trust me, click the link. It's that funny.

Thanks to Ghost of a Flea for sending the link.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:55 AM | Comments |

The Face of Our Allies in Iraq: Photo Essay

Young-Boy-with-Iraqi-Soldie_SM.jpg

This is the face of our allies in Iraq that some wish to abandon. No, you won't see any of this from the mainstream press. More photos from Michael Yon from Iraq here.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:49 AM | Comments |

Murtha Has History of Urging Cut & Run

Jason at Generation Why does the yeoman's work of investigating Rep. John Murtha's (D-France) policy stances. The single greatest mistake made by the Clinton Administration was cutting and running from Somalia. Why, you ask? Because the financial and logistical force behind the warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid was a much more insidious and, at the time, unknown character: Osama bin Laden.

As Jason notes in his excellent post, Murtha urged cutting-and-running from Somalia too--making the sacrifices of the men who died their vanity.

Osama had something of a religious experience while in Somalia in which he predicted that America would cut-and-run. When the U.S. did pull its troops from Somalia, some Muslims--including Osama himself--took this as a sign that bin Laden had mystical powers. Bin Laden would later recall to ABC News:

"Our people realize[d] more than before that the American soldier is a paper tiger that run[s] in defeat after a few blows," the terror chief recalled. "America forgot all about the hoopla and media propaganda and left dragging their corpses and their shameful defeat."
Even though the reason most Democrats have for wanting our troops to immediately withdraw from Iraq comes from a good place (not wanting our troops to be harmed), the lesson our Islamist enemies will learn from such a withdraw is that the U.S. is weak, just as they predicted. We cannot let them have such a victory. The time for the policy debate about a military action must be BEFORE troops are deployed. Once they are deployed, it must be the policy of the United States of America to win at all costs. Anything less will only reify the mystic worldview of Islamists in believing that Allah is on their side and will lead to more acts of terror around the world.

More from Jason at Generation Why.

As I've speculated in the past, if bin Laden is still alive there is a good chance that he has fled to the Horn of Africa. Somalia today is a lawless, wretched hive of scum and villainy, forgotten only because no TV reporter dares to enter its borders. It would be easy to evade the U.S. in such a country.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:37 AM | Comments |

Happy blogbirthday to The Rapist

Um, wait, sorry, The Therapist!

He's wacky. Check him out.

By See-Dubya at 01:52 AM | Comments |

Two Children of the Thirties

Long ago I decided that the fellow who deserves to be remembered for his interpretation of "The Sixties" was this guy, not this unmitigated sausage. (h/t: Lileks)

Swing low, sweet chariot.

By Demosophist at 01:21 AM | Comments |

November 21, 2005

Sandra "Beth" Geisel Sexually Abused by Students Says Judge

(Albany, New York) Today, Albany County Judge Stephen Herrick formalized a six-month jail sentence as punishment for Sandra "Beth" Geisel (photo) after she pleaded guilty to one count of rape. And then, astonishingly, the judge made all her excuses for her by stating:

"At the time this occurred, you were needy, drinking heavily and had a low self esteem. While you looked at this as affection, you were being used, abused and sexually abused. You became their playmate."
So, it appears that 42-year-old Geisel wasn't really responsible for her behavior. She had low self esteem and was victimized by the teen boys she met for sex. Holy-freaking-moly! The prosecution is outraged. The parents are outraged. And it's all because Judge Stephen Herrick is filled with boo-hoo logic which says a stupid woman can't be held responsible for her behavior.

Nevertheless, with credit for time served, Geisel skates out of jail next month with a hand slap and an apology. Poor thing. Note to all future defendants appearing before Judge "Bleeding Heart" Herrick: Wear a dress.

Previous on Jawa here. Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 08:19 PM | Comments |

Chris Matthews Jumps the Shark

Chris_Matthews_jumps_shark.jpg
Chris Matthews has finally jumped the shark. Excuse the metaphor, but Ace dropped the ball on the obvious one this time.

I've never understood why so many on the Right hated Matthews so much. Personally, I always liked him much more than, say, Bill O'Reilly. Yeah, I thought, he's a blowhard, but name some one on Fox, CNN, or MSNBC who isn't?

I'm beginning to see where that disdain comes from.

Edmonton Sun:

"The period between 9/11 and Iraq was not a good time for America. There wasn't a robust discussion of what we were doing," Matthews said.

"If we stop trying to figure out the other side, we've given up. The person on the other side is not evil -- they just have a different perspective."

Different perspective? Right.

Matthews is the sort of liberal that would take great exception to Eisenhower's charicterization of WWII as the Crusade in Europe.

We dub thee: Chris Matthews, Dhimmi.

Malkin, Ace, and Charles Johnson, and Dan Riehl have more.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:35 PM | Comments |

Happy Blogoversary

Happy Blogoversary to the second best blog written by fictional characters out ther--The Llama Butchers.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:30 PM | Comments |

OU Bomber Used TATP

We will grant that University of Oklahoma suicide bomber Joel Henry Hinrichs III may have not been part of a larger Islamic plot.

But I think the larger issue is being missed here: if you want to blow yourself up, which major world-wide religion do you consult for the expertise?

No, it's not the Mennonites.

Denver Channel:

FBI agents found the same type of volatile high explosive believe to have been used in the suicide bombings in London inside the apartment of a University of Oklahoma student who blew himself up near a packed football stadium, according to newly released documents.

....The FBI also found Hinrichs downloaded from the Internet "numerous text and image files" on weapons and explosives, including one on TATP four days before his death.

One video on his computer depicted a lit match being placed above a white powder then a bright flash.

Paranthetically, I also have a number of "'numerous text and image files on weapons and explosives', including one on TATP" and a video depicting a "lit match being placed above a white powder then a bright flash" on my computer. Of course, I got all of said images and videos from jihadi forums.
The FBI also discovered "explosive experiments and paraphernalia" and 0.4 pounds of a white powder that turned out to be triacetone triperoxide, or TATP, which is composed of hydrogen peroxide and acetone, according to warrants to search the home of Joel Henry Hinrichs III.
So, the case against Hinrichs seems to be closed for the FBI. He was a lone suicidial nut. Perhaps the only meaningful Islamic connection here is Hinrichs' source of inspiration: Hamas, Islamic Jihad, al Qaeda, etc.

Even so, that is saying a lot.......

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:36 AM | Comments |

Bloggie Goodness

Okay, so Instapundit has cornered the market on referral posts. I'm not Glenn Reynolds, but I do play one on T.V.

Project Hero: 1LT Brian R. Chontosh receives Navy Cross. God bless our heroes serving in Iraq.

Don't question Murtha's patriotism! Ever. Any one who would question Murtha's patriotism cannot be, by definition, a patriot. More Murtha lunacy here. Fellow Jawa blogger, Chris Short, discusses last Friday's vote.

Plame-gate continues. Am I the only one that finds this 'story' a little boring.

Why Republicans are such pussies when it comes to fighting illegal immigration.

Me on a deck of cards? Awesome-o! Vote for Jawa!!!

Help Meryl Yourish find a job. No, 'professional blogger' is still not a 'job'.

Decision '08 turns numero uno. And to think I knew Mark when he was just a twinkle in Glenn Reynold's eye.

Judicial tyranny in....wait for it...Israel. Apparently the repurcussions of Marbury v. Madison know no boundaries.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:46 AM | Comments |

Zarqawi Still Alive, The Left Celebrates

The White House is now saying that it is "highly unlikely" that Abu Musab al Zarqawi died in a Mosul raid Saturday. Earlier Jawa post from Traderrob here.

*Sigh*

Not that killing the al Qaeda in Iraq leader--and the man personally responsible for beheading innocent civilians---would really end the Salaafist insurgency in Iraq. It wouldn't. But it would be nice to know he was dead.

Vengeance: natures way of calming the nerves.

Of course over at dKos, when the erroneous news that Zarqawi dead broke, there were immediate signs of dismay. For the hardcore Left, any good news for our troops is bad news for them. They have pinned their political hopes on the defeat of our troops.

Not that they ever would come out and say, "We hope we lose."--Okay, occasionally they do actually let that slip from time to time-- But they do constantly downplay any good news and constantly barrage us with 'cover up' stories when there is even the slightest hint that some civilian in Fallujah might have got his feelings hurt because a U.S. soldier didn't present a search warrant from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upon entering his house in the middle of a firefight.

Hence, the Left is skeptical of any and all progress in Iraq.

So, if we seem to bring you too many "Yipee, Zarqawi is dead" stories, please forgive us. Unlike our friends on the Left, we are anxious to see the enemies of the United States of America dead.

Call it being overzealous for the cause of America.

Fox News:

On Saturday, police Brig. Gen. Said Ahmed al-Jubouri said the raid was launched after a tip that top Al Qaeda operatives, possibly including al-Zarqawi, were in the two-story house.

However, Trent Duffy, a White House spokesman, said Sunday that reports of al-Zarqawi's death were "highly unlikely and not credible."

"I don't think we got him," said U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, answering questions from reporters about whether al-Zarqawi had been killed in Mosul. Lt. Col. Barry Johnson, a U.S. military spokesman in Baghdad, said there was "no indication" that the terror leader had been killed.


Hat tip: Ron Wright who pointed us to this post by Evan Kohlmann and Dan Riehl, who has more here.

UPDATE: Howie e-mails me with this article from CNN. Apparently, Zarqawi's family and 'tribe' have disowned him. Don't worry al-Khalaylehs, every family has a 'Zarqawi' or two they are ashamed of.

UPDATE II: Let me be clear on this, I used the word 'hard Left' to describe those who want us to lose not 'liberal' or 'Democrat'. Yes, I believe the people over at dKos want us to lose. They don't want our soldiers to die, but they do want us to lose. They actually believe America is the greatest force for evil in the world. If you believe that then the conclusions to be drawn are inevetable.

If we are the bad guys then the only thing for a moral person to do is to support our enemies.

And, yes, wishing for the U.S. to pull out of Iraq now is the same thing as wishing for our enemies to win.

It doesn't matter if in your heart you love America. Withdrawal is failure. Hence, wishing withdrawal now is wishing failure.

I am not Jesus. I don't care what is in your heart. What I care about is the extent to which you support the victory of the United States of America.

In the comments though, Ryan (unlike the madmatt troll) raises a legitimate concern wanting some evidence that the Left celebrates. Okay Ryan, here you are. Of course, they don't come out and say "Hooray, Zarqawi" but they do boo the home team. Six of one, half a dozen of the other.

From the Democratic Underground:

I wonder when he can stop talking about Zarqawi, I want a new Boogie Man!

Nothing will happen with Zarqawi until October 2006 Just in time for the election, in an appearance to make it look "normal" when Diebold once again scams an election.

We can't pull out of Iraq now. After all, we almost caught Zarqawi. I'll bet if we stay another year we'll almost catch him 10 or 12 more times. Plus we'll kill his No. 2 man at least twice. What a steaming crock of bullshit.

I don't think Al Zarqawi was there, and I don't think they thought he was there. This is like all those stories about how certain they were that they had killed Hussein in the first bomb attack of the war, or that they'd killed Bin Laden when they murdered that poor farmer and his two sons with their unmanned drone. They just want Americans to say "Wow, look, they have a reason for all this stuff" and go back to watching Family Guy before BushCo quietly says "Well, we missed him, but it was close."

It's a good thing they missed him...otherwise they would have to invent another Al-Qaida terroist for us to focus on.

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

Eight High Ranking al Qaida Blew Themselves Up

Okay folks, I know it's DEBKA, but even a blind sow can find an acorn once in awhile.

Eight high-ranking al Qaeda leaders blew themselves up after a large American force Sunday noon laid siege to a building in which they were barricaded in Mosul, northern Iraq.

The US force, backed by helicopters and tanks, was led to the location by an intelligence tip. The troops had evacuated the area and were preparing to storm the building when the terrorists killed themselves.

Some Arab sources report that the American unit is busy trying to identify the 8 bodies, hoping against hope that Abu Musab al Zarqawi is among them. This is not confirmed by US military sources.

Again Arab Press is hardly a rock solid source but this story ties in with DEBKA'S post......

Arab press: al-Zaraqawi may have been killed

Arch terrorists and al-Qaeda leader in Iraq Abu Musab al-Zarqawi may have been killed, Arab press have reported.

According to reports, American and Iraqi forces are currently checking whether al-Zarqawi's body can be found among the bodies of other al-Qaeda members that blew themselves up at a house that was besieged by the forces at the northern town of Musul. (Ali Waked)

UPDATE: Jerusalem Post reporting it as unconfirmed.

Memo to eight imbeciles, virgins on backorder.

UPDATE II: U.S. 'just missed' capturing al-Zarqawi

BAGHDAD, Iraq - U.S. forces "just missed" capturing terror leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in a gunfight over the weekend in the northern city of Mosul, U.S. military sources told NBC News on Monday.

The military had intelligence that indicated al-Zarqawi was meeting with high-level Iraq in al-Qaida lieutenants, a Pentagon source said.
As soldiers closed in on the site, there was an exchange of small arms fire, then it appears the three al-Qaida suspects blew themselves up to avoid capture.

The military is conducting DNA tests on flesh and blood recovered from the scene, but a Pentagon official said indications are that al-Zarqawi is not among those killed.

CRAP!

Companion OpiniPundit

By at 08:10 AM | Comments |

November 20, 2005

Blogger Support Needed

Howie does requests so here we go with this one from Mr. Right vacation be damned.

I apologize for the mass e-mailing, but this is just too disgusting for words!

My co-blogger at The Right Place, Anna (also of A Rose by Any Other Name, ), has twice written about the plight of a small MilBlog run by Grey Eagle. First, Anna asked people to drop by and post some encouraging words after she noticed some very rude and disgusting comments being left there by leftwing trolls.

I thought that was the end of it, but Anna has just recently posted again about Grey Eagle's blog after she visited once more and saw the newest post Grey Eagle had at the top.

I couldn't find a permalink at Grey Eagle's site, A Female Soldier 2, but as of my writing this, it was still the top post.

I can certainly understand that. Seems some trolls just don’t know when to quit. I seem to remember one calling the queen of England a fat beotch on a London bombing thread. So I can see how it gets to a person. So blog on Anna and you know to troll an “Honor the Dead Thread” just plain sucks. So I hope Anna keeps it up. Mr. Right sent me a copy of the post and I’ll post it in the extended entry but really surf over there and show your support for Anna.

Update: Me Screw up duh

Thanks for the links, Howie!

Just to clear things up a bit, Anna is my co-blogger and was writing ABOUT a MilBlogger named Grey Eagle who runs A Female Soldier 2, which is the blog that has been under assault.

It is Grey Eagle who needs the words of support and encouragement, not Anna.

Sorry for any confusion my letter may have caused.

Sorry for any confusion I may have caused. I was in a hurry on dialup and I sucked. But I'm used to that so Support both bloggers and Mr Right. I now return myself to my regularly scheduled vacation.


Congratulations To Those Who Oppose The Soldiers

I wish to express my congratulations to the hackers, vandals, and anti-war visitors who successfully blocked my ability to post any further tributes to the soldiers. I am sure you find victory in preventing myself and others from having a place to read and pay our respects to the Fallen Female Soldiers, and my brother's in arms, the brave soldiers of the 101st Airborne Division. I can only imagine your satisfaction in justifying the disgrace of men and women who died for this country. You may not feel it was justified, but they gave their lives believing in what they were doing. Apparently freedom of speech is merely a phrase to you, not something you believe, in unless it applies to you. If you do not share the person's view you justify your actions in removing the ability for them to express their opinions. In doing so, you have only displayed to me that your cause is unjust, and strengthen my resolve and beliefs in what we are doing here. You have dishonored those who did believe in something, and toke away my right to mourn their memories. These were men and women who actually took a stand in what they believed in, sacrificed their time with their families, and put themselves in danger simply because they believed in something. So to support your beliefs what have you done? Oh, that is right, you took away my freedom to pay tribute and mourn my fellow soldiers.

I have never took away anyone's freedom to post their views here. It was my belief that if I was to fight and defend freedom, then that would have to be for all, regardless of whether I believed in your views or not. I never deleted your comments or views, and rarely stepped in to oppose them or prevent your expression of them. I even went as far as to give you a forum on the website at my expense to present your views in open debate. But you hacked that, and prevented anyone from presenting their views. I guess that is your version of freedom of speech that you believe in so dearly in.

I have read without intervention your mindless presentations of life here and the harm we supposedly do to the Iraqi's, yet you have never set foot on the soil here. I read the post of phosphorus bombs and wondered if you ever look beyond what you wanted to believe to discover the truth, or do you just mold it until you are able to shape it into some sort of viewpoint. Were you here during that time? I do not believe so, otherwise you would agree with others who were actually here, and actually witnessed the events. The phosphorus bombs were a more humane effort to dislodge a group of insurgents that had attacked and engaged U.S. troops. The military did not want to blow apart the entire area and the structures in it, as well as bring harm to those innocent in the attack. So this method was elected, to prevent further destruction and loss of innocent lives. I know that we do not share the same viewpoint here, but I continue to believe that if you do not wish to die at the hand of U.S. soldiers, then you should not attack them and attempt to kill them. They will happily spare your life if you refrain from attacking them. Please in the future do not post your tributes to the insurgents who kill hundreds of innocent women and children in Iraq. And to answer your question, yes many of those innocent Iraqi's are brought to military facilities for the finest in medical care possible as innocent victims of the terrorist you seem to support. So I have had the opportunity to see the horrible damage to a human body that a suicide bomber can do, and look in their faces, and not know what to say or how to explain how one of their own countrymen could do this to them. I seriously doubt that you have ever know that pain, that I felt in my heart when the Blackhawks landed with these people. So save your ridiculous accusations about me, what I do, what I feel, or the devoted men and women who serve here that saved the lives of those people that your precious noble terrorists that you defend so freely, attempted to destroy with their suicide bombs.

I stood on the runway the other day with Charlie Company. We were part of what is called a "ramp ceremony" in which we line up to pay our respects as the fallen soldiers in flag draped coffins are carried by to be loaded in C130 aircraft for their final trip home. I was very moved by this experience and wished to post it on my tribute which I have invested countless hours and cost to present to myself and others who are more respectful and obviously take the freedoms granted to you as American's more seriously. But I was unable to, thanks to your prevention of my rights. I am so glad to know that I am here defending your rights to speech and your ability to remove mine.

So it is with disgusted congratulations that I give you the recognition you so obviously require and let you know that you blocked further postings for now of fallen soldiers. I am sure you feel proud as American's, as human's in a free society, and of fully taking advantage of the freedoms I offered you on this website. It is true that I have very limited time here to spend constantly updating, backing up and re-uploading this website. Somehow the mortars, the small arms fire, and the wounded soldiers that arrive here daily prevent me from devoting the time required to monitor and prevent your attacks to the website. In addition, I receive no contributions, donations and have never asked for anything in presenting this website and have absorbed all the cost and additional costs in the increased bandwidth and attacks you carry out on my website out of my own pocket. So take this victory against my fallen brother in arms with pride.

To those who have not devoted as much energy to the destruction of this website and my rights, I do want to thank you for your continued support and the wonderful email I receive daily. I want you to know that not only I read your message, but many of the other soldiers here read them as well. As the holidays approach us and we are away from our families that means a lot more then you will ever know. A special thanks to PJ and the Web Of Support community for their wonderful care packages that have arrived (if you wish to give please contact them). It was like Christmas here as we opened our boxes of treats. We have also received care packages from other caring individuals and we appreciated them so much. Just to know that we are not alone, and the world has not turned against us and our efforts can be a very moving and powerful moment for us when we get our mail and our packages.

Finally, I wish to say that a soldier wounded from shrapnel awoke the other day after being unconscious from his wounds. His eyes are etched into my memory as he discovered he was alive, safe, and among his fellow soldiers. In that moment, I knew that everything I had sacrificed in my life, that this holiday season away from my husband and children, that the lack of sleep, the long days, and my personal sadness at times from the separation are worth it. Sometimes there are causes worth serving that are greater then ourselves.

Happy Thanksgiving and Holidays,
Grey Eagle
"AIR ASSAULT!"

I am requesting a blog burst on this to let this brave woman and all her comrades in arms know that there are still many more of us out here who love, respect and support the men and women serving this country in uniform than there are those who would commit such despicable acts!

To those who pick up the mantle on this, thank you! God bless you all and God bless America!

Sincerely,
"Mr. Right"
--
The Right Place
http://intherightplace.blogspot.com/

By Howie at 07:26 PM | Comments |

Morocco Nabs 17 Al Qaeda Suspects

The Moroccans are continuously in a state of high security alert after suicide bombings in Casablanca killed 45 people in 2003. As a result, extremists are watched very closely.

From Ninemsn:

Morocco security forces have arrested 17 radical Islamists on suspicion of belonging to a "terrorist structure" linked to al Qaeda, state news agency MAP said, quoting a police source.
Bully!


[Update 11/20/05, 2350 EST]

(via In The Bullpen) According to ABC News, two of the suspected terrorists apprehended are former prisoners from the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Brahim Benchekroun and Mohammed Mazouz were arrested in late 2001 and accused of participating in weapons training conducted by al Qaeda. They were released from Guantanamo Bay in August 2004.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 02:18 PM | Comments |

Hysterical Left Begins Building New Lie: "She Called Murtha a Coward"

"He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message that, 'Cowards cut and run, Marines never do'." - Congresswoman Jean Schmidt (R) Ohio
The latest burning question: Who called Democratic congressman Jack Murtha a "coward"? Was it Jean Schmidt, or a Marine Reserve colonel?

Reality and common sense have been lost in the hysteria. Read the quote. Neither called Murtha a "coward". Certainly not Schmidt, who was relaying a quote from a constituent, a colonel in the Marine Reserve. And the Marine didn't call Murtha a coward, either, if one takes the time to read the quote for comprehension, which few seem willing to do.

The Marine, quite clearly, is reminding Murtha that the accepted Marine tradition is "Reteat? Hell!" not the immediate and ignominious withdrawal that Murtha had publicly advocated. The Marine is admonishing Murtha that ignominious withdrawal is not a part of the Marine tradition. The Marine is trying to prod Murtha into doing the right thing, i.e., withdraw the call for surrender. The Marine is correct.

When Schmidt relayed her constituent's message on the floor of the House Friday, she touched off such a firestorm of hysterical weeping and gnashing of teeth that she was forced to withdraw her comments from the Congressional Record. Now, leftist bloggers and mainstream media propagandists are trying to twist the public perception of Schmidt's remarks into a meme that will serve their purpose, Democratic victory at any cost.

Not surprisingly (to anyone who reads the Gray Lady regularly) Jason DeParle, writing in the New York Times gets the story wrong, even while quoting Schmidt directly:

So when Representative Jean Schmidt, an Ohio Republican, created a furor on her 75th day in Congress by lobbing the word "coward" toward a Democratic war hero, those who know her best were anything but surprised.
The only mystery about DeParle's piece is whether the mistake is accidental or deliberate. It's possible, but not likely, that DeParle didn't understand exactly what Schmidt said. More likely, the NYT, as is their wont, made the mischaracterization on purpose. The Left lobe of the blogosphere is gleefully following the mainstream lead.

From leftie blog Bazzfazz

"A fellow congressperson (Rep. Jean Schmitt from Ohio) called Murtha a coward..."
Shakespeare's Sister offers us way too much information:
"I was watching it live, and almost shit my breeks when she called Murtha a coward."
Even gay alleged conservative Andrew Sullivan, who should know better, joined the Leftist meme creation frenzy, while quoting Schmidt's remarks in full:
SHE CALLED MURTHA A COWARD: Republican Congresswoman Jean Schmidt called Jack Murtha a coward this afternoon, unworthy of the Marines, on the House floor.
I always suspected that Sully was a mole. His dishonesty in spreading this distortion strengthens that suspicion.

There are only two possibilities here. Anyone who says that Jean Schmidt called Murtha a "coward" is either incapable of comprehending spoken English, or deliberately lying for political gain.

Originally posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto, named "most extreme blog" by the sissy Limey asshats at the Guardian Unlimited.

By Bluto01:07 PM | Comments |

November 19, 2005

Cut And Run

Could someone tell me the basis for the whole uproar over Murtha?

Why the shock? Why the outrage?

No one saw this coming? Democrats wanting to cut and run?

Bill Clinton, Mogadishu, October 1993.

When I get home people 'll ask me, "Hey Hoot, why do ya do it man? Why? Just some war junkie?" Ya know what I'll say? I won't say a goddamn word. Why? They won't understand. They won't understand why we do it. They won't understand that it's about the men next to you, and that's it. That's all it is.
By Vinnie at 10:59 PM | Comments |

Viva La Revolucion?

The Jawa Report takes pride in bringing to the forefront the plight of hostages in Iraq.

Not all of our citizens are being held hostage in Iraq.

The next time you see a Che t-shirt, think of Walter van der Veer.

A Google search reveals Cuba government propaganda, Linda's post, and not much else.

From the Cuban site:

Havana, November 27(RHC)-- A court in Havana sentenced late Wednesday US citizen Walter Van Der Veer to 15 years in prison, on charges of promoting an armed action against Cuba. Havana's district attorney's office had requested 20 years. The text of the sentence says that Van Der Veer is a declared enemy of Cuba's socialist state who attempted to promote subversive armed actions in the westerly Pinar Del Rio Province. For this purpose, continues the text, Van Der Veer clandestinely introduced military uniforms and other equipment, and was also planning to launch attacks against tourists in Cuba.

Arrested in August of last year, Cuban authorities also
discovered in his possession anti-Cuba propaganda and ink
pads to print out pamphlets signed by the Cuban
Liberation Front, a Cuban-American terrorist organization
based in Miami. According to his defense attorney, Van
Der Veer admitted to having spread anti-Castro propaganda
in Havana and that he belonged to 2 Cuban exile
organizations in Miami that promote the violent overthrow
of the Cuban government. And according to testimony by a
Cuban accomplice, Van Der Veer expressed interest in
obtaining weapons on the island.

May God bless Walter van der Veer and his family.

Of course, Walter just has to be the violent fellow portrayed by Castro, because, as we all know, American citizens are just flocking to Cuba to try and procure arms to overthrow that government.

By Vinnie at 08:05 PM | Comments |

Hurricane Murtha and the Coming Deluge (Updated)

The flap over last night's vote in the Congress on a version of Murtha's proposal (or at least the way the "Arab Street," as well as our dedicated enemies, see it) reminded me of a theme I worked on for a short time last year. That theme concerned the extinction of the Democratic Party. The notion I had was that the Democrats would become so short-sightedly self-serving that they'd self-destruct, leaving the US a single-party coalition of sub-factions for the remainder of the Terror War. As I recall, I felt the denouement could be pushed out to the 2008 election, but Dan Darling (now with Winds of Change) felt it might hit sooner. Well, my updated impression is that either the Democrats or the nation itself will self-destruct some time between now and November, 2008. Ultimately there aren't two sides to history. If you're standing in the wrong place when the storm hits, you won't last long.

As I listened to Susan Estrich debate Gordon Liddy on FOX last night it occurred to me that the Democrats really don't get it. The vote recommending withdrawal of troops "immediately" was defeated 403 to 3. It was a brilliant play that might easily have been just as effective had it been introduced by a Democrat, but to hear them talk they bitterly resented being manipulated into sending Al Qaeda a message of opposition, and the Iraqis a message of support and succor (to say nothing of reassurance to our troops). Why wouldn't they be overjoyed? And by grumbling and adopting an accusational stance the message they're sending the American people is that their tightly negative agenda is more important to them than the interests of the country or the fortunes of democracy. Have they gone nuts? Essentially the Democrats have been captured by "bad philosophy": a bad philosophy of war and a bad philosophy of politics. They've simply lost the knack of governance and become the captive of a sophomoric and californicated "Marxisantism" that will be their undoing. (h/t Pat Conlon for the term.) And if the voters ever get a clear image of that situation then Dan and I will be proved right.

But it doesn't end there. Playing into that partisan dynamic is a clear bid for power by conventional media. If they can manage, by carefully avoiding reportage that attributes either success, or even a rational strategy, to our actions in Iraq, they will have demonstrated enough dominance for their ability to control the message to secure their status for at least a few more years. The gamble is huge. They've constructed a meme of "imminent failure," referenced numerous times by Congressman Murtha, that bears an ironic resemblance to their continued and oblivious promotion of the meme that Bush rested his case for invasion of Iraq on an "imminent threat." (I've lost count how many times this has been debunked.) Only this time the threat really is imminent, for if the levee they've built against the truth finally breaks The Deluge will follow.

Update: Fair notice: I'm a Democrat, or have been most of my life. I currently don't identify with a political party, but I'm not likely to ever identify with the Democrats again after this abysmal and ongoing display of bad judgment. My take is that the issues (though not the policy prescriptions) usually identified with the Democrats won't disappear, but will have champions within a much broader Republican Party, at least for the time being.

The Democrats escaped irrelevance in the wake of the Civil War, but just barely. And I think their time may have finally come to go the way of the Whigs. I've been waiting to see some sign that the Democrats were going to awaken, but most of coherent voices within that party are either moving in the direction of Michael Moore and Moveon.org or they're getting the heck out. It's clear at this point that they've been captured. And this could be the final stage in the McGovernization of the party that took place during the Vietnam era.

Well, we'll see if a hawk (relatively speaking) can win the nomination without groveling to the Marxisant wing. Clinton didn't say word one about Murtha, so she knows enough to keep her head down. But just how much do those candidates have in common with the rest of the party, since Murtha re-defined it as the "defeat is inevitable" faction. If there were a dominant Democrat who sees the logic of our foreign policy and defined it the way Newt has defined "The Long War" that person could play a role similar to Lincoln, establishing a third party that eclipses one of the majors. Not, mind you, that I think there is such a person in the Democrat ranks. There isn't. And there is already a party that champions democracy-expansion and nation-building, so we don't another. That is, unless the Republicans abandon the project at some point.

So the only thing that keeps the Democrats relevant at all is the set of social issues that the Republicans have, so far, failed to resolve. (Poverty and education being the main ones.) If a branch of the Republicans becomes "progressive" in the sense that it promotes an effective "ownership society" program then the last toehold of the Democrats will be gone. So far there are not many signs that the Republicans are willing to pay these issues much more than lip service, but the potential exists. (Think "Newt.") And once that happens the Dems will come crashing to earth with a bang.

Most people think a Hillary-Condee race would be interesting for its novelty, but the one I'd like to see is a Hillary-Newt race. That would have the potential to change the political landscape for generations. The race would be decided in the center, and odds are the Dems would not survive as an effective party.

By Demosophist at 02:35 PM | Comments |

FOUR HUNDRED AND THREE

...Congressmen just voted to keep the troops in Iraq, three voted to bolt, and twenty-nine brave souls voted "Gosh-diggity, I've got to get home to the district"!

Why? Why did so many Democrats just whizz all over their anti-war base? How can they explain away such a yawning gulf between what they say in fundraisers and what they really think?

Democrats said it was a political stunt and quickly decided to vote against it in an attempt to drain it of significance.

That has to be one of the most gut-womblingly stupid things a politician has ever said. "We'll do exactly what the opposition wants, in order to...drain it of significance".

Who's insignificant now? eh, Mr. Soros?

By See-Dubya at 12:09 PM | Comments |

After My Appearance on al-Jazeera

The fallout from my appearance on al-Jazeera discussing the corrupt, anti-democratic, dysfunctional Yemeni regime that targets its own citizens: the Yemeni governmental newspapers are trashing my blog by name, and the Yemeni people are writing me by the hundreds with thanks. (Details here.)

Oh and I have a new troll.

By Jane at 07:29 AM | Comments |

November 18, 2005

Zaqueery Threatens to Behead King of Jordan.

In an Audio tape released today by Al-Qaeda in Iraq Abu Musab al-Zarqawi says, ”But we did not mean to kill all those civilians and by the way I want to behead your king. But really I’m a nice guy, trust me.”

Foxnews: Zarqawi made clear he was not about to stop the bloodshed, warning he will attack more tourist sites in Jordan and threatening to behead King Abdullah II. He said he was targeting Jordan because it is serving as a "protector" for Israel, helps the U.S. military in Iraq and has become a "swamp of obscenity," with alcohol and prostitution in its tourist sites. "Your star is fading. You will not escape your fate, you descendant of traitors. We will be able to reach your head and chop it off," al-Zarqawi said, referring to the king.
I think Zaqueery is serious eh Murtha?

Also see Jihad Watch.

Just in case you need another example of this lunacy here you go.

Still not enough? Try this. More you say?

By Howie at 10:52 PM | Comments |

GOP to Wobbly Dems: Bring it on!

murtha.jpg
The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on surrender-monkey Rep. John Murtha (D-France) call for an immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

Way to grow a set of cajones, House Republicans!

Of course, we wouldn't want to question Murtha's patriotism. Because as we all know, former members of the U.S. military cannot, by definition, be unpatriotic.

Except for Benedict Arnold.

Okay, one former miltitary man was a traitor.

How about Zebulon Pike ?

Er, okay, two.

Fine, but in addition to Murtha being a former Marine, the man is a sitting U.S. Congressman! A top official in the U.S. government!

Aaron Burr, any one?

Long, long time ago....

Alger Hiss, Roosevelt Administration

Enough!! So, there are a whole lot of cases where traitors happen to either be in high government positions or happen to have also served in the military. What does that prove?

Nothing, only that treason and military/government service are not mutually exclusive of each other.

So are you saying Murtah is a traitor? Doesn't he just want what is best for his country? By definition those trying to do what is best for their country can't be traitors, can they?

No, but he is a whiny bitch, isn't he?

Indeed.

Via Drudge, this news:

House Republicans, sensing an opportunity for political advantage, maneuvered for a quick vote and swift rejection Friday of a Democratic lawmaker's call for an immediate troop withdrawal from Iraq.

"We want to make sure that we support our troops that are fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan," said Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill. "We will not retreat."

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi had no immediate reaction to the planned vote.

The GOP leadership decided to act little more than 24 hours after Rep. Jack Murtha, a hawkish Democrat with close ties to the military, said the time had come to pull out the troops. By forcing the issue to a vote, Republicans placed many Democrats in a politically unappealing position - whether to side with Murtha and expose themselves to attacks from the White House and congressional Republicans, or whether to oppose him and risk angering the voters that polls show want an end to the conflict.

UPDATE: See-Dub suggests that you might want to call your Congressman about this one. Good point. Call away, minions, call away!

More at OSM.

Reynolds supplied links: Let Freedom Ring, Hotline

Hos and pimps wearing stars and stripes: Brian "Former WWF Superstar" Maloney, Llama "Butchers, not Bitches", Ace "Not a Slave to Wonkette" of Spades, Jeff "Cut" Goldstein, Colossus (no, that isn't my screen name) Blog, Euporic "did you say jarkolicious?" Reality

Video voyeurism of upcoming smackdown: Political Teen

Self-pimpified patriots: Jason Smith, Super Fun Power Hour, Don Surber

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:37 PM | Comments |

Religion of Putting You in Jail (or worse) for Blasphemy Update

From fellow Jawa blogger Mike Pechar:

A high school chemistry teacher in Qassim Province, Muhammad al-Harbi (aka Mohammed Salamah Al Harbi), faced blasphemy charges after his students and fellow teachers filed legal complaints against him for questioning and ridiculing Islam, discussing the Bible and defending Jews.

In Bukairia, north of Riyadh, al-Harbi was convicted in court before Judge Abdullah Dakhil who sentenced him to 40 months in prison and public flogging of 750 lashes. Al-Harbi was also banned from teaching.

Washington Times (via Robert Spencer):
Last month, on opposite sides of the globe, two assaults on the freedom of speech began. In Afghanistan, the editor of "Women's Rights" magazine was convicted on "blasphemy" charges after a religious adviser to President Hamid Karzai accused the editor of publishing two "un-Islamic" articles: one criticizing the Islamic practice of punishing adultery with 100 lashes; the other arguing that leaving Islam wasn't a crime....

Indeed, it does, but that same constitution also guarantees that no law may contradict the law of Islam. And the law of Islam says no messing with Islam. And that's not all: Since March 2004, a new media law signed by President Karzai outlaws anything Islamically "insulting." In other words, hello totalitarian practices, goodbye protections and freedoms. And goodbye Ali Mohaqiq Nasab, the "blaspheming" editor sentenced to two years in jail. By all accounts, this was getting off easy: The prosecutor in the case was angling for a death sentence.

Heh, but there is no relationship between Islam and tyrrany. None. What. So. Ever. Move along.....nothing to see here.....

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:34 PM | Comments |

9th Circuit Should Relocate to Mecca

(San Francisco) The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that 7th-graders training for three weeks to be Muslims is not a "religious exercise."

From the SacBee.com:

Christian students and parents cannot sue a school district where some seventh-graders pretended to be Muslims for three weeks during a course in world history, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the role-playing game was not a religious exercise that violated anybody's constitutional rights.

The decision was issued one day after the U.S. House of Representatives chastised the 9th Circuit for ruling earlier this month that parents can't sue public schools for providing information about sex. That decision "deplorably infringed on parental rights," said the House resolution.

Thursday's decision came down in an unpublished memorandum, indicating the judges considered it routine.

Students were encouraged to play at being Muslims - adopt Muslim names, recite a line from a prayer and give up candy or television to simulate fasting.

U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton dismissed the case two years ago, saying teaching was not indoctrinating.

The 9th Circuit upheld her decision in a five-sentence ruling, saying only that the activities weren't "overt religious exercises" that would raise concerns under the First Amendment prohibition of "establishment of religion."

Senior Circuit Judge Dorothy Nelson of Pasadena and Circuit Judges Johnnie Rawlinson of Las Vegas and Carlos Bea of San Francisco signed the decision.

The unpublished memo format indicates the appellate judges did not believe they were breaking legal ground. Unpublished decisions cannot be cited in future cases.

So, the 9th Circuit just sort of sloughed off the case as a routine matter that didn't have anything to do with the First Amendment. To be fair, it's become routine for me to feel like vomiting every time the subject of the 9th Circuit comes up.

This is worth seeing also. Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 10:16 AM | Comments |

Imam Warns Muslim Lingerie Model to Stop Modeling in her Underwear

michelle_leslie_lingerie.jpgHot Muslim model Michelle Leslie has been warned by Muslim leaders that it is un-Islamic to model lingerie. The Australian model apparently converted to Islam as a way to convince a Bali court to reduce her drug sentence to the minimum.

UPDATE: The original indictment was for 15 years, but after her 'conversion' to Islam, the sentence was reduced to 3 months. Also of interest is that the nude pics once in her model portfolio have apparently been removed. Wouldn't want to offend the Islamic court in Indonesia.....

The Courier-Mail:

AN Islamic leader has warned convicted drug user Michelle Leslie not to continue living as a Muslim if she plans to go back to modelling underwear.

But even as an Indonesian court imposed a three-month sentence which will see her out of jail as early as today, the Australian fashion industry was preparing for her return, with claims she already has two assignments booked.

Leslie's final appearance in the Bali court yesterday was without the Muslim headdress she adopted at the start of her trial after announcing her conversion to Islam. ....

Australian Federation of Islamic Councils president Dr Ameer Ali said: "If she is a practising Muslim, I don't think she should go back to her job as an underwear model – because Islam is all about modesty. "She can't have it both ways . . . either practise Islam and do something decent, or don't practise it at all."

According to the Islamic faith, a practising Muslim must observe a set of rules including being honourable, dignified, gracious, law-abiding, modest, clean – and not consuming drugs or alcohol.

For the love of all that is holy, go back to modeling underwear! Allah demands that you go back to modeling underwear!!!

Which Michelle Leslie do you support?

a) Muslim Michelle Leslie?

michelleleslie_in_hijab.jpg

b) Infidel Michelle Leslie?


CLICK FOR LARGER PIC

More Infidel Michelle Leslie pics below (CLICK FOR LARGER PICS)


By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:12 AM | Comments |

College Professor Advocates Soldiers Kill Their Officers

If taking the position that soldiers in Iraq ought to kill their superior officers isn't treasonous speech, then I guess nothing is.

Real freedom will come when soldiers in Iraq turn their guns on their superiors and fight for just causes and for people's needs..."

HT: Ace

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:26 AM | Comments |

Move Along, Move Along

For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes.

Rusty returns to blogging?

I decide to throw up a post here?

We post one minute apart?

The 2005 Weblog Awards nominations?

Coincidence, sheer coincidence I tell you

By Vinnie at 10:05 PM | Comments |

Iraq Onanism: The Return of Rusty Shackleford

Rusty Shackleford stops blogging for a couple of months and the nation goes all wobbly.

To pull out of Iraq now is to lose the war. We cannot lose this war in Iraq, too much is at stake. Lives are at stake. Our national security is at stake. The long-term survival of liberal democracy is at stake.

To pull out will be to prove the Abu Musab al Zarqawi's and bin Laden's of the world correct: Western democracies do not have what it takes to stick out a hard fight. Their war in Iraq has always been the Afghanistan strategy--a war of attrition. The bin Ladenists will proclaim victory and redouble their efforts.

All this defeatist talk of early withdrawal from Iraq brings to mind the story, out of Genesis, of the sons of Judah. Onan was condemned in the Bible for, excuse the metaphor, pulling out too early as well. The sin, commonly misunderstood by Christians to be masturbation, was actually that Onan was under obligation to raise children to his dead brother. By spilling his seed on the ground, rather than impregnating his brother's widow, Onan did not finish the job he had started. Onan failed to live up to his obligation to his dead brother, so "What [Onan] did was wicked in the LORD's sight; so [the Lord] put him to death."

It appears that the LORD was more than a bit pissed at Onan's premature withdrawal. I am a bit pissed myself at the far more serious prospect of withdrawing from Iraq before we have crushed our enemies and left a legacy to that country that we can be proud of.

We are under obligation to our dead comrades in Iraq. If we do not finish the job, they will have died in vain. There are worse things than dying in war, dying in a lost war is one of them.

I'm back. Driven to blog by all this defeatist bullshit coming out of the Democrats' mouths. Administrations do not wage wars, nations do. So, yes, not supporting the war is the same as not supporting the nation you treasonous twits. We are at war, and the last time I checked the Democrats were a part of we. Until we win this war I will do my part. In the meantime:

shut_the_fuck_up.jpg

Update: Tammy Bruce, good gay, chimes in:

Think about it this way--what if during World War II the Republicans kept arguing that the war was a "quagmire" and that President Roosevelt "lied" about Pearl Harbor, and that the Germans had done nothing to us, as a result he had "misled" us into the war. Then they start asking for a "time table" to get out of Europe. Does that sound normal to you? Or reasonable? Or does it sound like a defeatist, Hate-America first attitude? It certainly would have been manna to the ears of Hitler and Tojo.

Here is the time table for all war: it ends when the enemy is vanquished. The time table for Europe was when the Axis Powers all eventually surrendered, and it will be so as we face and fight the new facist enemy. It's now obscene what the Dems are doing and has moved far past the "loyal opposition" expected of the minority.

It's about time the White House respond to the absurdity of the Dems. Their attacks are not only ridiculous and old, they put this entire nation in increasing danger as our enemies look for more ways to kill our families and destroy civilization. This is not a game, but the Dems are treating it as though it were. Shame on them.

(HT: John Hawkins)

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 05:49 PM | Comments |

The Real Club Gitmo

You got a beef with prisoners being held on the island of Cuba? Why don't you go bitch at the real torturing thugs, and quit pissing and moaning about us.

From Nordlinger's column on NRO:

It’s hard to take in the entire monstrosity that is Castro’s Cuba, but focus on one prisoner, if you will, as described and supported by Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, on the House floor:

"Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak about Blas Giraldo Reyes Rodríguez, a political prisoner in totalitarian Cuba.

Mr. Reyes Rodríguez is an opposition activist and independent librarian . . . His life is dedicated to the proposition that the men and women of Cuba must be free: free to learn, free to worship, free to elect their leaders, free to enjoy their inalienable human rights. Independent libraries in Cuba, such as the one operated by Mr. Reyes Rodríguez, provide the indispensable service of circulating truth at a time when the tyrannical regime provides only propaganda. These heroic librarians often circulate the great works of anti-totalitarian literature, including the important writings of Václav Havel and Dr. Martin Luther King. Literature is a great danger to totalitarian regimes: books often provide the truth that tyrants seek to hide.

Unfortunately, in March 2003, as part of Castro’s condemnable crackdown on peaceful pro-democracy activists, Mr. Reyes Rodríguez was arrested. In a sham trial, he was sentenced to 25 years in the totalitarian gulag."

Reyes Rodríguez is suffering from ill health. The authorities have threatened to arrest his wife, for receiving visitors who expressed sympathy with her — this comes under “counterrevolutionary activities.”

Lincoln D.-B. concluded, “Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear: Mr. Reyes Rodríguez is languishing in an infernal gulag because he believes in freedom, truth, democracy, and human rights. His family is being constantly threatened because of these ‘dangerous’ beliefs. My colleagues, we must demand the immediate and unconditional release of Blas Giraldo Reyes Rodríguez and every other political prisoner in totalitarian Cuba.”

You want to whine about Gitmo? Tell it to Castro.

You want to whine about "secret" prisons? Tell it to the Chi-Coms.

You want to carp about Abu Ghraib? Go complain to Ayatollah Khamenei.

Just don't come crying to me, beeyotch.

By Vinnie at 05:48 PM | Comments |

Clarke Feared bin Laden-Iraq Connection (Images/Evidence)

So, Richard Clarke believed that not only was there a connection between bin Laden and Iraq prior to 9/11, but also that those ties were so strong that he fretted over bin Laden finding safe-haven under the Saddam Hussein regime should he escape Afganistan? I really didn't believe it when I first saw this from Bryan blogging over at Michelle Malkin's place. Looks like Glenn was surprised, too.

Surely, I said to myself, this report must be exaggerating.

There's probably a good reason no MSM publication has mentioned the fact, right?

So I whipped out my copy of the 9/11 report only to find that Richard Clarke indeed is full of shit when he talks about the President misleading us into war. If Bush misled us into war, then Clarke is equally guilty of that sin (as are a majority of Democrats in Congress).

Here is a captured image from the original report. Click for larger view.

This is the same Richard Clarke who wrote in a book alleging the Bush Administration misled the American people into thinking there was an al Qaeda-Iraq connection that:

"There's absolutely no evidence that Iraq was supporting al Qaeda, ever."
Ah, the hypocrisy of it all......

And, just so you know, President Bush isn't the only person in White House circles with a spelling problem. Click for larger view.

Richard Clarke, genius or scorned politician trying to shift blame?

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

Vapid Points Memo

I don't often read Josh Marshall, but he had a reputation for being a reasonably objective lefty (was willing to point out that the Rathergate memos were, well... not really evidence of anything negative about GWB) so I decided to see what he has to say about the Democrats' "that bad man tricked us, mommy" meme. Alas, there isn't even a mustard seed of objectivity now. To whit:

There's one point that's important to remember about the White House's pushback to cover up its collective dishonesty about Iraq. We've noted before that in scandals or political nominations the decisive issue is not the number of opponents, the intensity of their opposition or even the quality of their arguments. The decisive issue is most often whether the scandalee or the nominee has some committed base of support, even if it only amounts to a distinct minority.

So, if you were thinking some semblance of objective truth has any relevance, well just grow the heck up you impossible romantic. Because even though Joe Wilson's CIA debrief said the opposite of his NYT piece, we know what he meant, right? Because within the boundaries of the hermeneutic circle the phrase "the Iraqis were seeking uranium in Niger" means the same as "the Iraqis were not seeking uranium in Niger." Nobody's counting anyway. Do you see anybody counting? I don't see anybody counting. Relatively speaking...

A parallel dynamic is in play with respect to what the White House is trying to accomplish with this current pushback.

Isn't this a misuse of the term "parallel?" I mean, isn't he saying that the decisive issue is whether or not Bush has a committed base of support? Which, strictly speaking, would be the same, rather than a parallel dynamic... right? But maybe he means something else?

Virtually all of the arguments the White House is now advancing are transparently ridiculous on their face to anyone who has closely followed this evolving debate over the last three years.

But that doesn't matter. The White House doesn't need to win any debates. What they need is for their core supporters to have something to say. Anything. And to be able to say it loudly. The one thing that would be fatal for the White House from its defenders would be silence.

Nope, that's pretty much what I thought he meant:

1. The President's "push back" is transparently so ridiculous that we needn't even reiterate its content here... because it's so ridiculous... and just silly... and not worth our time at all. No way, no how!

2. And all of those arguments we can't hear through the flesh and bones of our thumbs might as well be a chorus of airhorns at a football game, because we're not even listening... na na na na... can't hear... na na na na... a word... na na na... just noise... na na na... to impress... na na na... the evil Bushitlerburton's base... na na na na na na!

Not circular reasoning. It's really not. With two centroids it's more like... elliptical. Yeah, definitely not circular.

I don't say this as a counsel of pessimism or futility. It's just important to understand, to know what they're trying to achieve. The good news is that most Americans have already figured this out. Clear majorities of the public now believe this president misled them about Iraq. And they'll certainly grow. The key is to press these on the specifics, why they said these things they knew weren't true.

You mean, specifics like these, Josh? Yeah, somebody's being transparently ridiculed alright. Don't take out any bank loans based on that projected "growing majority," because sticking your thumbs firmly in your ears won't make those unfamiliar oppositional words any less meaningful. That's why they call it "pushback."

By Demosophist at 11:23 AM | Comments |

Leader of Seattle Mosque Arrested, Muslims *Shocked*

kucinich_seattle_mosque.jpg
The leader of a Seattle mosque was arrested on Nov. 15th as he got off an airplane by the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force. Number of articles appearing in the US media about this? One.

Have imams being arrested by the Joint Terrorism Task Force become so commonplace that it is no longer 'news', or is the lack of MSM coverage more evidence that the MSM doesn't want you to associate terrorism with Islam? Hmmm, I wonder if a Christian pastor had been arrested by the Joint Terrorism Task Force would the media reaction be any different?

Notice this Seattle Post Intelligencer piece makes sure to qualify Abu Abrahim Sheik Mohamed's name by noting that he is a 'respected leader':

The respected leader of a Rainier Valley mosque was arrested Monday on an immigration charge, surprising those who knew his work in Seattle's Somali community.
Trust me on this one: 'Immigration charges' + 'Joint Terrorism Task Force' = 'I lied on my Visa application about not being a member of al Qaeda'
Federal agents with the Joint Terrorism Task Force arrested Abu Abrahim Sheik Mohamed at Sea-Tac Airport as he got off a domestic flight, federal criminal justice sources said....

While he is being held only on the immigration violations, the Joint Terrorism Task Force is continuing its investigation, a source said.

As if lying about being a terrorist on your Visa application is just some minor infracton.
Mohamed, a native of Somalia, has led prayers as the imam of Abu-Bakr Mosque for the past five years.
Have I mentioned lately where I believe Osama bin Laden to be hiding out? No. Well it aint in Pakistan or Afghanistan. Wrong continent. Try a continent that starts and ends with "A". No, not Antarctica, guess again. And if I were to hazard a guess (and this is an educated guess based on evidence) as to exactly where on that continent Osama bin Laden was hiding out I would begin with the place where bin Laden first attacked the U.S....
"I know the man. I'm shocked to hear that (he was arrested), if he's the one I have in mind," said Hisham Farajallah, president of the Islamic Center of Washington.

Several Somali immigrants expressed surprise Tuesday after hearing of Mohamed's arrest, saying the imam was well regarded in the community for his counsel on a wide range of family issues.

"He is a leader for all the Somali community, not just for the mosque," Hassan Nur said as he arrived at the mosque for midafternoon prayer.

Nur and a man named Ali said that Mohamed would solve "99 percent" of the problems brought to him, helping people with questions related to marriage, parenting, addictions and youths.

I hear the Taliban also could solve 99% of familial problems within minutes.
They said Mohamed even started a summer program at the mosque to keep youths off the street and out of trouble.
Again, as if fascists of all stripes aren't social reformers. They are. You know, solve our ills by forcing us to follow Allah.
"I've never heard of him doing anything wrong," Nur said.

Mohamed is "a wise man in every aspect," said Mohamed Abdi, president of Somali Community Services of Seattle.

I wonder if Abu Abrahim Sheik Mohamed's 'wisdom' and service to his community included advising his friends and neighbors to follow the the Somali Islamic tradition of female genital mutilation?
Mohamed has been the only imam at the mosque, which started six years ago without a prayer leader.

Though open to Muslims of all national origins, the mosque is used mostly by Somalis.

In November 2004, the Joint Terrorism Task Force arrested 14 people at about a dozen Seattle-area locations, including a business one block from the original location of Abu-Bakr Mosque.

Among those arrested in the November 2004 raids was Karim Abdullah Assalaam, who told an FBI informant that "his whole Muslim crew" is involved in an ongoing bank fraud scheme for personal gain and because "you can't go to war broke," court documents say.

In a tape-recorded conversation about guns, Assalaam told the informant, "I just want to die a Shaheed," which he defined as a martyr "who dies in the cause of Allah."

Assalaam is to be sentenced next month after acceding to a federal plea agreement.

In addition to the single mention of Abu Abrahim Sheik Mohamed's arrest in the U.S. press, the Iranians give the story a little ink. Iranian Quran News Agency's story is actually just a reprint of the SPI article, but it is interesting that the Iranians would give this some space but not, say, CNN.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 11:04 AM | Comments |

Jihadis Target Australia in Video Message

Jemaah_Islamiyah.jpg
(Jawa, Indondesia) A new video from Jemaah Islamiah. al Qaeda's Southeast Asia counterpart, warns Australia to pull out of Afghanistan and Iraq or faced renewed acts of terrorism. The video was found ten days ago in a cave on the Island of Jawa (Java in English) after a top Jemaah Islamiah was killed there. The man on the video (shown right) is believed to be Malaysian national Noordin Top, a senior operative of Jemaah Islamiah.

Jawas on Jawa? Indeed.

The Age:

SOUTH-EAST Asia's most wanted terrorist has warned in a video message seized by Indonesian police that Australia will be the prime target of new "intimidation and terror" attacks while its troops remain in Iraq.

In an apparent copy of al-Qaeda tactics, the video features a masked man believed to be Jemaah Islamiah mastermind Noordin Top urging strikes against Australia and claiming Prime Minister John Howard is leading the nation into tragedy.

The video threat, a first for Jemaah Islamiah, was seized when police raided Noordin's Central Java hide-out 10 days ago, soon after his bomb-making partner, Azahari Husin, was shot dead. Farewell video messages from the three suicide bombers who struck Bali in October were also recovered.

Indonesian Vice-President Jusuf Kalla played the videos to Islamic leaders, saying police believed the man issuing the warning was Noordin.

"America, Australia, England and Italy are all our enemies," says the militant. "We especially remind Australia that you, Downer and Howard, are killing Australia, leading it into darkness and tragedy and into mujahideen terror.

"Know that as long as you continue to colonise the land of Iraq and Afghanistan and intimidate Muslims then you, too, will feel our intimidation and terror."

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:32 AM | Comments |

November 16, 2005

U.S. Retains Control of Internet Traffic

(Tunis, Tunisia) Some members of the United Nations World Summit on the Information Society wanted to transfer control of Internet traffic from the United States to the United Nations. They failed.

From Reuters:

The United States will keep control of the domain-name system that guides online traffic under an agreement on Wednesday seen as a setback to efforts to internationalise one of the pillars of the Internet.

Negotiators at the United Nations World Summit on the Information Society said they had agreed to set up a forum to discuss "spam" e-mail and other Internet issues and explore ways to narrow the technology gap between rich and poor countries.

But oversight of the domain-name system will remain with the United States, a setback for the European Union and other countries that had pushed for international control of one of the most important technical aspects of the Internet.

The European Union said in a statement that the agreement would lead to "further internationalisation of Internet governance, and enhanced intergovernmental cooperation to this end."

This is good news. I foresee nothing but chaos if the UN or the EU were put in charge.

By at 11:54 PM | Comments |

Will Work For Crack Campaign

(Kelowna, British Columbia) There's a politician, Andrew Uitvlugt, running for the mayor's office in Kelowna who has proposed a very creative solution to the problem of litter.

From EdmontonSun.com:

Andrew Uitvlugt says crack cocaine could be used as a reward for drug-addicted homeless people to pick up garbage.

"So what I propose to do is to possibly motivate people with drugs to do constructive work, like get them out there picking up garbage, and then we'll give them some crack," he says on the website www.okbc.tv in a wacky video campaign pitch.

"Now what'll happen here is, after they're done picking up their garbage, they're going to feel somewhat good, they're going to think to themselves, 'You know, I did a good job today.' And they're going to maybe need less crack."

You can see Uitvlugt's campaign video here.

Besides not having a clue on how to pronounce his name, I suspect that Uitvlugt hasn't considered that his proposal would likely result in an increase in garbage along with an increase in people desiring to pick up garbage.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 11:45 PM | Comments |

Reader Love Mail NYC Must Burn Edition

Read the love mail here.

ALL AMERICANS AND JEWISH C**TS MUST DIE.

The Jew is a vile creature descended from monkeys and pigs.

Jerusalem will be muslim once again - or else New York will be burn again.


Oh wait is that a threat sure reads like one. I'm sure some of our NYC readers may take offense to that. He left us an email address.

ram1patel@hotmail.com

By Howie at 02:00 PM | Comments |

Four Minutes to Stupid

Yesterday the Senate passed a Republican resolution rather than the Democratic sponsored resolution setting a weak time table for withdrawal from Iraq and adding reporting requirements on the White House after a whopping four minutes of debate. Was this a wise move?

I ask you Bill Kristol of The Weekly Standard?

William Kristol: Pathetic

All honor to the 13 Republican senators who stood up against the me-too, we-want-to-get-out-as-well-but-not-quite-as-quickly, Republican leadership: Bunning, Burr, Chambliss, Coburn, DeMint, Graham, Inhofe, Isakson, Kyl, McCain, Sessions, Thune, and Vitter. Let's hope their colleagues reconsider and join their ranks in the near future.

The answer is: Correct!!! it is pathetic. Obviously the Senate is pandering to the polls here and Al-Zaqueery can be satisfied that his predictions about US behavior are sadly accurate.

Prediction: Al-Qaeda in Iraq will now bide their time waiting for the US to bow to pressure both domestic and foreign to do what he can’t. Push the US out and get his opportunity to establish an Islamic fascist state in Iraq.

Freddie "The Beetle" Barns?

Fred: Oh shut up Howie.

By Howie at 01:45 PM | Comments |

Open Source Media Launches Today, Live Broadcast

open_source_media_logo.gifOSMTM (Open Source Media), a new online venture designed to bring together top online writers, journalists and commentators under a single umbrella, officially debuts today at a New York City launch event that features a discussion on the future of blogging and journalism, details on the company's content and the official launch of the new portal to the best of the blogosphere.

The Jawa Report is one of 70 top blogs now a part of Open Source Media.

Today's launch event will include comments by Instapundit blogger Glenn Reynolds and Pulitzer Prize winner and best-selling author Judith Miller, who will discuss the "Shield Law" bill currently before Congress and broader issues facing bloggers and journalists alike.

The launch will be broadcast live at 10:00 a.m. (ET) and can be heard via Windows Media here or via Real Audio here.

Other speakers will include David Corn (The Nation), Larry Kudlow (CNBC's "Kudlow & Company"), John Podhoretz (The New York Post) and Claudia Rosett (contributor to The Wall Street Journal), all of whom are noted bloggers and members of the Open Source Media Editorial Board, plus an appearance via audiocast by the noted Baghdad bloggers Iraq the Model.

Founded last year under the Pajamas Media name, OSM has been one of 2005's most widely-discussed new blogging developments, due both to the scope of its vision and the support it's drawn from respected mainstream media journalists and bloggers.

Today, Open Source Media will detail its plan to become the new meeting ground for thoughtful opinion and news online, and a unique home for the growing movement of citizen journalism that will include important webloggers from across the world with mainstream media journalists sympathetic to its goals.

"Our most important goal is openness via the free and respectful exchange of ideas expressed through citizen journalists, coupled with a dedication to honesty and the truth," said co-founder, noted screenwriter and blogger Roger L. Simon. "When we talk about citizen journalism, we mean journalism not created by elites, as in the 'top-down' traditional media, but from the 'bottom-up,' by citizens using their observations and knowledge, informed by a desire to speak honestly. Citizen journalism at its best means the pursuit of the truth above all things, above partisanship or the financial interests of the medium publishing it."

Today's announcement comes as the blogosphere maintains staggering growth. According to a January 2005 report by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, blog readership increased by nearly 60 percent in 2004 to approximately 27 percent of all Internet users. More recently, analysis by the Newspaper Association of America found that the average weekday circulation of U.S. newspapers is continuing to decline, falling 2.6 per cent over the six month-period ending in September 2005. But, while cognizant of these trends, Open Source Media's vision remains one of evolution and cooperation.

Open Source Media currently features content from more than 70 bloggers worldwide, primarily focused on political and current events. However, the goal is to expand its scope to eventually include all forms of coverage, from local news to pop culture to sports, fashion, food, hobbies and more. Advising the company and its bloggers is an Open Source Media Editorial Board that includes Reynolds, Corn, Kudlow, Rosett, Michael Barone and 10 other noted journalists and bloggers announced on October 17.

Today's event will take place at The Rainbow Room, 30 Rockefeller Plaza, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will be audiocast live beginning at 10 a.m.

BEGINNING AT 10:00 AM EASTERN: STREAM LIVE AUDIO WITH WINDOWS MEDIA OR REAL MEDIA

Compiled from OSMTM and other sources.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:30 AM | Comments |

WTW Tornaders of November.

Yesterday afternoon here at the office we were all told to go down to the lowest level and hang in the hall. Sirens had been going off for a bit. It was pretty much like your school drill except for the storm had already passed and it was not a drill. So while we had fun hiding in the hall and talking several tornaders did occur. Let’s see we have Cannellburgh IN, Davies Co In, Gibson Co KY, Hopkins Co KY. Homes destroyed phone and power interrupted. Heck it even got the Kangaroo Express in Cannellburgh. My son explained it to me this way. You got your hot air here and your cold air here and boom it just explodes like a volcano. So at least these were during the day. Lake Gitche Gumee ain’t the only place the Gales of November are a problem.

Here are your White Trash Wednesday bloggers


By Howie at 09:28 AM | Comments |

November 15, 2005

Liberty and Jihadi Dating

Carnival of Liberty XX is up at Ericgrumbles.


Also see the latest Jihadi matchmakers here at Vonski.


By Howie at 01:06 PM | Comments |

Questioning Their Patriotism: Between a Rock and...

From David Adesnik, on Oxblog "Are the Democrats Lying?":

"IF THE DEMOCRATS ARE LYING, THEN THEY REALLY ARE UNPATRIOTIC": That is the basic argument that Glenn makes here, and that Tom Maguire has aptly summed up by observing that

I believe there is a substantial difference between "Your false charges are undermining the troops" and "Your criticism is undermining our troops".

I agree with this argument in the abstract, although I don't think that it justifies what George Bush said. For Bush to be in the right, it should be transparently clear that his opponents are lying. I would argue that while the Democrats may not be telling the truth, it is not intentional. Instead, they have succumbed to confusion, short-sightedness, and unthinking resentment of the President.

Which, when you think about it, are ideal qualities to have in a political opponent, aren't they? Not just because an opponent with impaired judgment is easy to outmaneuver, but because they're a little less endearing to folks making up their minds about who ought to be governing them.

Update: David says, later:

It is wrong and offensive to argue that simply changing one's opinion is unpatriotic, regardless of the motive.

Let's assume for the sake of argument that most Democrats have come out against the invasion only because of the polls. This fact may demonstrate that the Democrats have no ideas of their own about foreign policy, but it isn't immoral.

Which raises an interesting question. Is there an essential difference between being unpatriotic and being ineptly or inadequately patriotic? Does the quality of patriotism matter, and if so how much? Implied in Glenn's criticism is the observation that the Democrats allowed proximate advantage to overrule or eclipse long term or broader advantage for the nation. While that may not be unpatriotic, it does suggest a deficient patriotism. I'd argue that quality definitely matters, and that the quality of patriotism that Michael Yon is documenting with brilliance (of non-Americans in this case), and that Ernie Pyle documented in a former age, is what's making the difference between winning and losing.

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia)

By Demosophist at 12:19 PM | Comments |

Everybody Was Lying All The Time Except Now Believe Me.

Ok top liars about the war in Iraq this week are:

Bill Clinton, Madeline Albright, Democratic Senator Carl Levin of Michigan and the number one lying traitor this week is Senator Jay Rockefeller D WV.

Foxnews
WALLACE: But you voted, sir, and aren't you responsible for your vote?
ROCKEFELLER: No. I'm...
WALLACE: You're not?

Ok so the bottom line is that the congress when voting for the Iraq war shirked its duty. The constitution grants war powers to the congress. The congress ever wary of ever doing anything passes the buck to President Bush by granting him powers to use his best judgment rather than actually declare a state of war. Why do this? Because the American public has the attention span of a fruit fly. Now they can both cast blame on the President and distort the truth for political gain. So I took the google challenge on this one and it seems to me the real problem here is that the congress was full of chickenshit pass the buck cowards. In fact any President who gets one of these “authorizations” probably gets a queasy feeling right from the start because he knows the congress is to hell with what is right, which way is the wind blowing today?

Others: Watchblog, Techcentral, Michelle Malkin, Don Surber and last but not least California Conservative who made instapundit today. Way to go CC.



By Howie at 12:11 PM | Comments |

Iraq Gun Porn: Which Guns Suck, Which Guns Rock

UPDATE: Welcome minions of Drew Curtis!

Which commonly used weapons in Iraq do our brave soldiers give the thumbs up to and which do they thumb their nose at? Here is a review.

Even though I've been pretty much out of The Jawa Report loop for the past month or so, I do get a ton of e-mails daily. From time to time I get an e-mail worthy of sharing with you. This is one. It was forwarded by a reader in the Navy, Mike, who in turn got it from a friend of his in the Marines. You may have seen it making the rounds already. The review of the weapons are one recently returned Marine's opinion [name removed to protect his identity] and does not necessarily mean a consensus has formed. If you scroll to the end you'll also see an assessment of our enemiy's capability as well as those of our allies.

As the son and grandson of two very fine Marines, let me wish all those fighting in Iraq all the best and God speed in a final victory over the enemies of the United States of America.

------

1) The M-16 rifle : Thumbs down. Chronic jamming problems with the talcum
powder like sand over there. The sand is everywhere. [The Marine] says you feel
filthy 2 minutes after coming out of the shower. The M-4 carbine version is
more popular because it's lighter and shorter, but it has jamming problems
also. They like the ability to mount the various optical gunsights and
weapons lights on the picattiny rails, but the
weapon itself is not great in a desert environment. They all hate the 5.56mm
(.223) round. Poor penetration on the cinderblock structure common over
there and even torso hits cant be reliably counted on to put the enemy down.
Fun fact: Random autopsies on dead insurgents shows a high level of opiate
use.

2) The M243 SAW (squad assault weapon): .223 cal. Drum fed light machine
gun. Big thumbs down. Universally considered a piece of shit. Chronic
jamming problems, most of which require partial disassembly.
(that's fun in the middle of a firefight).

3) The M9 Beretta 9mm: Mixed bag. Good gun, performs well in desert
environment; but they all hate the 9mm cartridge. The use of handguns for
self-defense is actually fairly common. Same old story on the 9mm: Bad guys
hit multiple times and still in the fight.

4) Mossberg 12ga. Military shotgun: Works well, used frequently for clearing
houses to good effect.

5) The M240 Machine Gun: 7.62 Nato (.308) cal. belt fed machine gun,
developed to replace the old M-60 (what a beautiful weapon that was!!).
Thumbs up. Accurate, reliable, and the 7.62 round puts 'em down.
Originally developed as a vehicle mounted weapon, more and more are being
dismounted and taken into the field by infantry. The 7.62 round chews up the
structure over there.

6) The M2 .50 cal heavy machine gun: Thumbs way, way up. "Ma deuce" is still
worth her considerable weight in gold. The ultimate fight stopper, puts
their dicks in the dirt every time. The most coveted weapon in-theater.

7) The ..45 pistol: Thumbs up. Still the best pistol round out there.
Everybody authorized to carry a sidearm is trying to get their hands on one.
With few exceptions, can reliably be expected to put 'em down with a torso
hit. The special ops guys (who are doing most of the pistol work) use the HK
military model and supposedly love it. The old government model .45's are
being re-issued en masse.

8) The M-14: Thumbs up. They are being re-issued in bulk, mostly in a
modified version to special ops guys. Modifications include lightweight
Kevlar stocks and low power red dot or ACOG sights. Very reliable in the
sandy environment, and they love the 7.62 round.

9) The Barrett .50 cal sniper rifle: Thumbs way up. Spectacular range and
accuracy and hits like a freight train. Used frequently to take out vehicle
suicide bombers ( we actually stop a lot of them) and barricaded enemy.
Definitely here to stay.

10) The M24 sniper rifle: Thumbs up. Mostly in 308 but some in 300 win mag.
Heavily modified Remington 700's. Great performance. Snipers have been used
heavily to great effect. Rumor has it that a marine sniper on his third tour
in Anbar province has actually exceeded Carlos Hathcock's record for
confirmed kills with OVER 100.

11) The new body armor: Thumbs up. Relatively light at approx. 6 lbs. and
can reliably be expected to soak up small shrapnel and even will stop an
AK-47 round. The bad Hot as shit to wear, almost unbearable in the
summer heat (which averages over 120 degrees). Also, the enemy now goes for
head shots when ever possible. All the bullshit about the "old" body armor
making our guys vulnerable to the IED's was a non-starter. The IED
explosions are enormous and body armor doesn't make any difference at all in
most cases.

12) Night Vision and Infrared Equipment: Thumbs way up. Spectacular
performance. Our guys see in the dark and own the night, period. Very little
enemy action after evening prayers. More and more enemy being whacked at
night during movement by our hunter-killer teams. We've all seen the videos.

13) Lights: Thumbs up. Most of the weapon mounted and personal lights are
Surefire's, and the troops love 'em. Invaluable for night urban operations.
[The Marine] carried a $34 Surefire G2 on a neck lanyard and loved it.

I cant help but notice that most of the good fighting weapons and ordnance
are 50 or more years old!!!!!!!!! With all our technology, it's the WWII and
Vietnam era weapons that everybody wants!!!! The infantry fighting is frequent, up close and brutal. No quarter is given or shown.

Bad guy weapons:

1) Mostly AK47's The entire country is an arsenal. Works better in the
desert than the M16 and the .308 Russian round kills reliably. PKM belt fed
light machine guns are also common and effective. Luckily, the enemy mostly
shoots like shit. Undisciplined "spray and pray" type fire. However, they
are seeing more and more precision weapons, especially sniper rifles. (Iran,
again)

Fun fact: Captured enemy have apparently marveled at the marksmanship of our guys and how hard they fight. They are apparently told in Jihad school that the Americans rely solely on technology, and can be easily beaten in close quarters combat for their lack of toughness. Let's just say they know better now.

2) The RPG: Probably the infantry weapon most feared by our guys. Simple,
reliable and as common as dogshit. The enemy responded to our up-armored
humvees by aiming at the windshields, often at point blank range. Still
killing a lot of our guys.

3) The IED: The biggest killer of all. Can be anything from old Soviet
anti-armor mines to jury rigged artillery shells. A lot found in [The Marine's]
area were in abandoned cars. The enemy would take 2 or 3 155mm artillery
shells and wire them together. Most were detonated by cell phone, and the
explosions are enormous. You're not safe in any vehicle, even an M1 tank.
Driving is by far the most dangerous thing our guys do over there. Lately,
they are much more sophisticated "shape charges" (Iran ian) specifically
designed to penetrate armor.

Fact: Most of the ready made IED's are supplied by Iran, who is also providing terrorists (Hezbollah types) to train the insurgents in their use and tactics. That's why the attacks have been so deadly lately. Their concealment methods are ingenious, the latest being shape charges in Styrofoam containers spray painted to look like the cinderblocks that litter all Iraqi roads. We find about 40% before they detonate, and the bomb disposal guys are unsung heroes of this war.

4) Mortars and rockets: Very prevalent. The soviet era 122mm rockets (with
an 18km range) are becoming more prevalent. One of [The Marine's] NCO's lost a leg
to one. These weapons cause a lot of damage "inside the wire". [The Marine's] base
was hit almost daily his entire time there by mortar and rocket fire, often
at night to disrupt sleep patterns and cause fatigue (It did). More of a
psychological weapon than anything else. The enemy mortar teams would jump
out of vehicles, fire a few rounds, and then haul ass in a matter of
seconds.

5) Bad guy technology: Simple yet effective. Most communication is by cell
and satellite phones, and also by email on laptops. They use handheld GPS
units for navigation and "Google earth" for overhead views of our positions.
Their weapons are good, if not fancy, and prevalent.

Their explosives and bomb technology is TOP OF THE LINE. Night vision is
rare. They are very careless with their equipment and the captured GPS units
and laptops are treasure troves of Intel when captured.

Who are the bad guys?:

Most of the carnage is caused by the Zarqawi Al Qaeda group. They operate
mostly in Anbar province (Fallujah and Ramadi). These are mostly
"foreigners", non-Iraqi Sunni Arab Jihadists from all over the Muslim world
(and Europe). Most enter Iraq through Syria (with, of course, the knowledge
and complicity of the Syrian govt.) , and then travel down the "rat line"
which is the trail of towns along the Euphrates River that we've been
hitting hard for the last few months.

Some are virtually untrained young Jihadists that often end up as suicide
bombers or in "sacrifice squads". Most, however, are hard core terrorists
from all the usual suspects (Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas etc.) These are the
guys running around murdering civilians en masse and cutting heads off. The
Chechens (many of whom are Caucasian), are supposedly the most ruthless and
the best fighters. (they have been fighting the Russians for years). In the
Baghdad area and south, most of the insurgents are Iranian inspired (and
led) Iraqi Shiites. The Iranian Shiia have been very adept at infiltrating
the Iraqi local govt.'s, the police forces and the Army. The have had a
massive spy and agitator network there since the Iran-Iraq war in the early
80's. Most of the Saddam loyalists were killed, captured or gave up long
ago.

Bad Guy Tactics:

When they are engaged on an infantry level they get their asses kicked every
time. Brave, but stupid. Suicidal Banzai-type charges were very common
earlier in the war and still occur. They will literally sacrifice 8-10 man
teams in suicide squads by sending them screaming and firing Ak's and RPG's
directly at our bases just to probe the defenses.

They get mowed down like grass every time. ( see the M2 and M240 above).
[The Marine's] base was hit like this often. When engaged, they have a tendency to
flee to the same building, probably for what they think will be a glorious
last stand. Instead, we call in air and that's the end of that more often
than not. These hole-ups are referred to as Alpha Whiskey Romeo's (Allah's
Waiting Room). We have the laser guided ground-air thing down to a science.
The fast mover's, mostly Marine F-18's, are taking an ever incr easing toll
on the enemy. When caught out in the open, the helicopter gunships and
AC-130 Spectre gunships cut them to ribbons with cannon and rocket fire,
especially at night.

Interestingly, artillery is hardly used at all.

Fun fact: The enemy death toll is supposedly between 45-50 thousand. That is why we're seeing less and less infantry attacks and more IED, suicide bomber shit.

The new strategy is simple: attrition.

The insurgent tactic most frustrating is their use of civilian non-combatants as cover. They know we do all we can to avoid civilian casualties and therefore schools, hospitals and (especially) Mosques are locations where they meet, stage for attacks, cache weapons and ammo and flee to when engaged. They have absolutely no regard whatsoever for civilian casualties. They will terrorize locals and murder without hesitation anyone believed to be sympathetic to the Americans or the new Iraqi govt. Kidnapping of family members (especially children) is common to influence people they are trying to influence but cant reach, such as local govt. officials, clerics, tribal leaders, etc.).

The first thing our guys are told is "don't get captured". They know that if
captured they will be tortured and beheaded on the internet. Zarqawi openly
offers bounties for anyone who brings him a live American serviceman. This
motivates the criminal element who otherwise don't give a shit about the
war. A lot of the beheading victims were actually kidnapped by common
criminals and sold to Zarqawi. As such, for our guys, every fight is to the
death. Surrender is not an option.

The Iraqi's are a mixed bag. Some fight well, others aren't worth a shit.
Most do okay with American support. Finding leaders is hard, but they are
getting better. It is widely viewed that Zarqawi's use of suicide bombers,
en masse, against the civilian population was a serious tactical mistake.
Many Iraqi's were galvanized and the caliber of recruits in the Army and the
police forces went up, along with their motivation. It also led to an exponential increase in good intel because the Iraqi's are sick of the insurgent attacks against civilians.

The Kurds are solidly pro-American and fearless fighters.

According to [The Marine], morale among our guys is very high. They not only
believe they are winning, but that they are winning decisively. They are
stunned and dismayed by what they see in the American press, whom they
almost universally view as against them. The embedded reporters are despised
and distrusted. They are inflicting casualties at a rate of 20-1 and then see shit like "Are we losing in Iraq" on TV and the print media. For the most part, they are satisfied with their equipment, food and leadership.

Bottom line though, and they all say this, there are not enough guys there
to drive the final stake through the heart of the insurgency, primarily because there aren't enough troops in-theater to shut down the borders with Iran and Syria. The Iranians and the Syrians just cant stand the thought of Iraq being an American ally (with, of course, permanent US bases there).

That's it, hope you found it interesting, I sure did.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:52 AM | Comments |

Chirac Announces Terms of French Surrender

Once again, after a valiant struggle, the French bow to the inevitable. It is said that Chirac bravely turned down an offer from President Bush to send five Marines to help put down the rioting [thanks to Sandy Shanks for forwarding that hilarious email].

Allons enfants de la Patrie...

From Agence France Presse:

Chirac described the unrest as "a crisis of meaning, a crisis of identity," saying it was the sign of a "deep malaise" in French society.

"I wish to tell the children from these difficult neighbourhoods, whatever their origins, that they are all sons and daughters of the republic," he said in a televised address.

The president announced the creation of a paid training and employment scheme for 50,000 youths from such areas and a series of measures to improve access to the workplace and to combat discrimination.

Yes, yes, we have all had our cheap fun mocking the French for their little foibles; their arrogance, hypocrisy, incompetence, greed, treachery, military pinheadedness, political stupidity, ingratitude, spreading stinky cheese on everything, illegal profiteering, collaboration, encouragement of Jerry Lewis, etc., but...what shall we do when there are no more French? The foot will be in the other shoe then, mes amis, and the most endearing aspect of our surly little quiche-eating surrender monkeys may be simply the fact that they were...French.

Oh well, we still have Québec...and, of course, in a pinch, Cajuns.

Cette poste est aussi ecriver sur The Dread Pundit Bluto. Le Bluto est bon. Trés bon. Et beau. Comme le Bruce Willis.

By Bluto01:37 AM | Comments |

November 14, 2005

Cool Mom Johnson Gets 30 Years

(Denver, Colorado) Last July, 41-year-old 'Cool Mom' Sylvia Johnson (photo) pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor sex-assault counts and nine felony counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Today, Cool Mom Johnson was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Previous Jawa posts here, here and here. Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 08:57 PM | Comments |

Blogging Blagojevich

Yes since Gov Rod's helpers seem so interested in my saftey let's see what their boss is up to.

ILL Republican Newsletter Nov 4th

·ROD WON'T TALK. As of today, the new Blagojevich administration policy, regarding confirming subpoenas delivered to state agencies, will be 'not to say anything' and refer inquiries to the U.S. Attorney's office. This week's state agency receipts included four new subpoenas in what appears to be an investigation, agency by agency, into suspicious hiring practices. Apparently, there are so many incoming subpoenas that confirming each and every one would take up too much of the governor's press office time. The U.S. Attorney's office is not in the habit of commenting on ongoing investigations. The administrations' disappointing decision puts an end to any transparency the office may have had. A veil of secrecy over the administration's legal wounds will prove to be a politically damaging practice. (Sun Tim es 11/4)
· ICC CHAIRMAN FAILS TO PASS SENATE. Marty Cohen failed to receive enough votes from the Illinois State Senate this week to be confirmed as the new ICC Chairman. Cohen was seen as a politically motivated nomination by Governor Blagojevich, who wanted to appear to be consumer friendly to voters through Cohen's history as an advocate who has long fought the same energy providers he would be required to work with as ICC chair. Cohen came out and slammed both Democrat and Republican Senators who have received contributions from the energy lobby. If the Governor really supports Cohen, he should return the $110,000 that he received from the energy lobby. (Tribune 11/4/05)
ILL Republican newsletter 11/11 : NO COAT TAILS FOR ROD. Who knew that only three years into his administration Governor Blagojevich would have such little clout in his own party that the collection of petition signatures would be such a challenge? A Democratic precinct committeewoman from Sangamon County complained this week about the trouble she is having getting people to sign petitions for state- wide candidates. "Quite a few of the people have adamantly stated they will not sign it because Blagojevich is on there," the unidentified committeewoman said. (Journal Register 11/10/05)
· RIDING THE ETHICAL EDGE. State employees have had dual roles as it was revealed that more than four hundred parole officers were asked by the Blagojevich administration to distribute letters to community organizations advertising Rod's political accomplishments. The Department of Children and Family Services ("DCFS") received a similar request from the administration to use their employees to hand out letters praising the Governor for his policies for welfare recipients. DCFS employees turned down the Governor's request. The use of state employees to tout the governor's political accomplishments to the public walks a very fine ethical line. Democratic state Rep. John Fritchey agreed with the criticism, "Regardless of the legality of their actions, in this day and age having state employees undertake this kind of activity is going to unavoidably raise questions as well as cynicism." (Daily Herald 11/8/05)


I swear to blog every single negative Gov Rod story I can find. Send em & I'll post em.

By Howie at 03:41 PM | Comments |

Irving Mainway's Christmas Catalog

Saw this over at etoys.com:

jackpot.jpg
Start em' out, young, I says, so they can help granny pull the levers while she changes out her oxygen tank!

I know, these have been around forever, and I think I wanted one from the Sears catalog when I was but a wee lad in short pants. ("For ages 8 and up!") But as a dad now I look at that and wonder, what were they thinking? aren't there some parts of life we just want to keep away from our kids for a decent interval?

What's next? What kind of real-life toys are on their way?
Vito the Debt Collector action figure with audible leg-snapping feature?
Lil' Snuggles Happy Hash Pipe?
Pimp characters for the Bratz dolls?
Flophouse Atlantic City Canopy Bed, with Realistic Junkie-barf Stains?
Lil' Tykes Jiggle & Giggle Stripper Pole?
Holly Hobby I-can-mix-it Tequila Bar?
Grope & Fumble Make-believe Frat Party?
Barbie Planned Parenthood Clinic?

Never mind, don't tell me what's next. I know I won't like it.

By See-Dubya at 02:13 PM | Comments |

The Iraqi Willie Horton

Galley Slaves, a blog run by the Weekly Standard's editors, tells us more about one of the Jordanian bombers: He'd been detained on suspicion of terrorist activities by US forces in Iraq, and then released due to a lack of compelling evidence.

Without knowing more about the circumstances of his detention and release, I'm not going to throw too many stones. We have a finite amount of jail space, interrogators, etc. It doesn't do us any good to lock up people and hold them indefinitely without cause, and it doesn't win us any friends. On the other hand, I have to agree with the Slaves:

Maybe requiring our military to meet the full burden of U.S. law when it comes to detaining terrorists isn't the best idea.

While you're over there, check out their post on the incompetent MSM hitjob on CS Lewis. Teaser--he smoked many cigarettes! He had sex once! Possibly with his wife, I can't tell!

It's hilarious how the intelligentsia try to manipulate Christians based upon their own warped understanding of them, no doubt derived from their own hilarious propaganda.

By See-Dubya at 01:54 PM | Comments |

Five Simple Questions

The LA Times’ Dennis Prager asks five simple questions of law abiding Muslims.

(1) Why are you so quiet?
(2) Why are none of the Palestinian terrorists Christian?
(3) Why is only one of the 47 Muslim-majority countries a free country?
(4) Why are so many atrocities committed and threatened by Muslims in the name of Islam?
(5) Why do countries governed by religious Muslims persecute other religions?

There are a billion Muslims in the world. How is it possible that essentially none have demonstrated against evils perpetrated by Muslims in the name of Islam? This is true even of the millions of Muslims living in free Western societies. What are non-Muslims of goodwill supposed to conclude?

Good questions Mr. Prager. See the link Dennis spells out the reasons why he asks each question.


By Howie at 01:25 PM | Comments |

Al Qaeda Targeted Intel Meeting in Amman Blast

DEBKAfile reports that the al Qaeda bombing at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Amman last Wednesday specifically targeted a secret intelligence meeting. The attack wiped out the entire group of senior Palestinian, Jordanian and Saudi intelligence officers. With the arrest of the unsuccessful fourth bomber, Sajid Mubarak Atrous al-Rishawi, Jordanian investigators have a possible lead to identifying who leaked the time and place of the secret meeting.

Agreed, DEBKAfile sometimes comes across as a little loosey-goosey in its assertions. In my opinion, that doesn't seem to be the case with the latest report.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 11:09 AM | Comments |

The Long Shadow of Marienthal

In the 1930s two great pioneers of modern political sociology published an extensive "ethnographic study" of a small town in Austria. What Paul Lazarsfeld and Marie Jahoda found, in Marienthal: The Sociography of an Unemployed Community would not reasure those ready to stick their heads back in the sand now that the riots in Paris are "over." (h/t: Roger Simon) The combination of unemployment and "the dole" created a social vacuum into which National Socialism was about to arrive as a savior, so this little book about small-town Austria constitutes what amounts to an early warning that could have prevented a holocaust, had anyone been prepared to read the signs.

But what is really frightening now is that National Socialism had to be largely invented before it could (as Jerrold Post puts it) "fit into German society like a key in a lock." Islamism, which has one parent in common with National Socialism, and is therefore a "half-sibling," has been gestating now for generations. The key doesn't need to be invented. It's ready and waiting. And unless Europe can figure out some way to both get their economic engine running productively, and integrate/assimilate this brooding population, then these riots are merely the prelude to a coming storm.

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia)

By Demosophist at 12:41 AM | Comments |

November 13, 2005

2,000 Raging Muslims

Crossposted from Stop The ACLU

Via WND we learn the latest from the religion of peace.

They came in buses to the small village of Sangla Hill in the Nankana district of Punjab in India.

Some 2,000 organized Muslims first vandalized three churches, a nuns' convent, two Catholic schools, the houses of a Protestant pastor and a Catholic priest, a girls' hostel and some Christian homes, according to Asia News.

Then they burned them to the ground, while about 450 Christian families fled yesterday. They have not returned.

The Justice and Peace Commission accuses the police of "criminal negligence" because they did not intervene.

Lawrence John Saldanha, archbishop of Lahore Archdiocese and chairman of the National Commission for Justice and Peace, said "the attack seems to have been planned and organized as the attackers were brought to the site in buses and instigated to commit violence and arson. It gave our people a lot of fear and anxiety but we hope the government will do something."

The violence began 10 a.m. Saturday and was apparently motivated by the latest blasphemy case. On Friday, a Christian, Yousaf Masih, allegedly burned some copies of the Koran and disappeared. One of his brothers, Salim Masih was arrested the day before. The Commission of Justice and Peace in Lahore ruled that the blasphemy accusations were false and stemmed from the accusers having a financial dispute with the families they accused.

Just a little note to the liberal apologists, ACLU, etc. Don't straddle the fence. Choose your sides, because this war is only about to get worse. I pray for you all to get on the side of good. This is a spiritual war for sure. The extremists of Islam will do their evil, and you can either keep trying your multi-culturism, politically correct crap, or not. It doesn't matter to the raged murderers of Islam either way. You can keep feeding the aligators, but don't think that means they will eat you last.

Remember on 9/11 when we all realized that Muslims were at war with us? Do we need to go through that again to realize they're still at war with us?

By at 06:46 PM | Comments |

Rambling post. Mostly about oil. And RINOs, and Zarqawi. Soros. Throwing stars, too.

Zarqawi's old neighbor saying that these attacks were "something that not even a Jew would do", and the Hashemite dynasty is ready to make hash out of him. Right now, Zarqawi is furiously spinning his latest massacre, trying to explain to a shocked and grieving Jordan why it was necessary and why they should still support him. Sounds like Al-Qaeda has jumped the Zarq in Jordan.

A similar miscalculation has occurred in America. Fourteen moderate, squishy Republicans decided they were more interested in the psychological health of the Alaskan caribou than they were about the ability of poor Americans to heat their homes and drive to work. So they scuttled plans to finally tap a little of that sweet, sweet crude in ANWR. Hope those caribou vote for you, fellas. Tell'em to bring a photo ID.

Meanwhile down in Southern California, a strange thing happened. There's this blogger and radio host who has been extremely accomodating of lapses in party discipline by House and Senate Republicans. He's a nice guy (and according to people who know him, not just on the air) and a clever writer and he is, even when you disagree with him, always worth paying attention to--but he takes a lot of criticism because he cuts so much slack to 'moderate' Republicans. We're all Republicans here, we can't afford to alienate the moderates, he says repeatedly; and he's right to a point--it is when the moderates feel comfortable alienating the conservative majority that they deserve criticism and political pressure. But softly, softly, advises our California friend.

Imagine my surprise when I go over to his blog, and see a list of the defectors' names, with a sweaty, chanting, bare-chested Hugh Hewitt painting voodoo signs around them, a dagger in his teeth and a fatwa-writin' pen in hand:

...a defeat on this issue has to lead to retribution. If the party isn't dedicated to being a majority party organized around the core issue of national security seriousness, it won't last as a majority anyway. Exiling the weak-kneed on a national security issue is exactly the sort of action that will underscore the seriousness of the party on these issues.

So would be the stripping of some committee and subcommittee chairs from a couple of unreliable-on-national-security Members.

OOH-RAH! I hope he doesn't see this entry of the Therapist's or he might crank the outrage level up from "masked French youth" to "Private Pyle in Full Metal Jacket".

I like the new Hugh. So before he pins my hand to my keyboard with a throwing star, I'm going to duck down into the extended entry and point out the one thing that slightly moderates my own fury about this situation:

Oil prices are down. They must be way down, because gas prices here in Northern California, while still exorbitant, are well below where they were before Katrina hit. The summer driving season is over, and the fall so far has been mild so heating oil usage hasn't depleted supplies yet. Bloomberg says that prices are going lower still.

The high prices triggered more exploration and production and got oil into barrels. It took a while and there were shortages, and oil is still too high, but it looks like the blip might be correcting itself. Which is, I should add, very promising for the economy.

Some of the urgency about tapping into ANWR has disappeared. Oil's too high but it's not at the shrieking, dive-klaxon-and-strobe-light emergency we were enduring in September. Government's always slower to respond to these things than a free market, and the legislation might have come in late on this one.

I'll be curious to see what the oilmen have to say about this. I'm not saying we shouldn't drill, but I do think there's cause to revisit the debate.

There's no cause, however, for Republicans to take money from George frickin' Soros. I wonder how much money he's making on this deal?

By See-Dubya at 07:28 AM | Comments |

Jordan's King Abdullah Vows to Get Zarqawi

(Amman, Jordan) Here's some strong language from an Arab leader.

From ABC News Online:

Jordan's King Abdullah has vowed to track down the militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, after officials announced they hold Zarqawi's group "Al Qaeda in Iraq" responsible for the blasts in Amman that killed 57 people.
In addition to Jordan, I'd like to see some other mid-eastern countries aggressively pursuing Zarqawi.

By at 12:13 AM | Comments |

November 11, 2005

A Veterans Day Desecration

Veterans arrested for "trespassing" in a veterans cemetery?

Protesters led by a veterans post tried to remove a flag display placed by peace activists at a veterans cemetery, and five were charged with criminal trespass.

The display remained intact Friday, Veterans Day, despite a threat by at least one of the protesters to return later to finish yanking up the flags.

The display of 2,000 white flags, meant to remember U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq, was set up at Veterans Memorial Park cemetery Oct. 30 under a permit issued to Waterville Area Bridges for Peace and Justice.

Members of the local Veterans of Foreign Wars post complained, saying they wanted the flags removed before Veterans Day. The permit allows the flags to remain in place until the first snowfall.

On Thursday, about 10 people went to the cemetery and, under the glare of television camera lights, some began removing the flags as eight peace group members and sympathizers gathered nearby. Police moved in quickly to make the arrests.

Wayne Elkins, the VFW commander who led the protesters and was among those detained, said he had no problem with the peace group, as long as it stays out of the cemetery.

"They desecrated our veterans' grounds. If they want to protest, let them protest. We don't mind. But to desecrate hallowed ground is wrong," he said.

Waterville Maine must now be reasoned part of the "euro-zone". Too bad the vets weren't waiting for the "activists" as I'm sure they could have shown those clymers a more appropriate place to stick the white flags.

UPDATE: It appears that it was a memorial park as opposed to a cemetery according to the Ithaca Times....

Outraged veterans are calling for the removal of 2,000 white flags that members of a local peace group planted to commemorate America's war dead in Iraq. Calling the flags and signs in Veterans Memorial Park "a disgrace" and "illegal," veteran Wayne H. Elkins asked the city to revoke the group's permit.

Elkins, who served for a year in Vietnam and is station commander of Waterville's Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1285, said he had heard rumors that if the city didn't order Waterville Area Bridges for Peace and Justice to remove the flags before Veterans Day on Friday, veterans might take on the task themselves.

Nonetheless the disgraceful motives of WABFPJ remain the same. It's an oft used attempt by "activists" to promote their pacifist propaganda by exploiting our brave guys and the ultimate sacrifice they made. Does anyone think for one minute that these valiant men who lost their lives to protect us all would appreciate these puny minded zit farmers sticking white flags in a place specifically designated for their honor.

The VFW guys know what their fallen comrades would think and so do we. Put your damned white flags up, in your front yard, in the town square for all anyone cares but keep them the hell away from those venerable patches of ground we have chosen to remember the self sacrifice, courage and heroism of the best this great country has to offer.

Companion OpiniPundit

By at 03:33 PM | Comments |

Friday Sandcrawler PSA

First as always lately let me thank our guest posters for another great week.

Thanks to Demosophist.
Vinnie.
Mike Pechar.
See-Dubya who also posts here.
Chris Short.
Traderrob.
The Dread Pundit Bluto.
Chad Evans.
Drew.
Richard.
Jane from Armies of Liberation.

Second Pixi Misa says that mu.nu will be moving to new servers over the weekend. Expect to see some flakey stuff but also expect that next week this thing will run like striped ass mule. Over the weekend you should be able to read The Jawa Report and other mu.nu blogs but temporary flakeyness or lack of comment boxes just means Pixi Misa is working on it. Please be patient it’s hard to keep all these blips running around in order. If a computer works right it is normally because somebody was just too stubborn to let the damn thing win. So below I present a boat load of links from this week. Yes the best of the best except for a few things that got by me. This post is open to all track backs The Jawa Report did one two Fridays ago and got a good response. I’ll do that every other week till Rusty gets back to us. Speaking of Rusty, he did post today so don’t miss that.

Congratulations to The Politburo Diktat who celebrates one million hits and two years on the blogosphere.
One year blogiversary for Reverse Vampire.
Spy vs. Spy

Opinionjournal:Know the truth about cover--that it is the Achilles' heel of the clandestine service--and you will begin to appreciate how deeply dysfunctional the operations directorate has been for years. Only a profoundly unserious Counter-Proliferation Division would have sent Mr. Wilson on an eight-day walkabout in Niger to uncover the truth about uranium sales to Saddam Hussein and then allowed him to give an oral report.

Right Wing Nuthouse discusses left wingnut.
It takes a special kind of stupidity to believe that you are right when everyone else on the planet says you’re wrong:

Liar Liar pants on fire.
All the French bullshit we can now throw right back at them.
What happened? Ed can tell you.
At least somebody appreciates us.
Patriot Act limits get support.
Make it glow baby.
Daddy does why this “old” gun have plastic stock? Well sit down sugar and I’ll tell you.
Few WWI vets remain living.
Support your Jawa commentators. If looks like a duck quacks like a duck, yep duck. CM wings CDBDIs.
Marines turn 230.
Filthy is cooking lamb this week and it’s oh so tender like me.
Entire transcript of Mr. Bush speech to veterans today.

Also after last weeks tornadoes several Evansville TV and Radio stations combined forces with our PBS station's call center and raised 1,250,000 bucks for tornado relief. The fundraiser benefited the Evansville Red Cross and Salvation Army. In fact the phone lines were backed up so bad that they may open them again this weekend See WTVW for more info. We are down to about 300 homes without power and don’t worry Midwesterners TKOB so while we welcome all help we realize that the south has it much worse.

Due to the shortage of boobie posts this week click below.

This has been a Sandcrawler PSA.



Ok so I've been really busy but ther is a light at the end of the tunnel. Howie who had hardly a day off since February is taking vacation from 11/19 through 11/27 so be ready. I may post just a bit but I intend to touch computers as little as possible during those nine days. I need the time off I've had it.

By Howie at 03:01 PM | Comments |

Karl Malone Tells Feds to Shove It, Helps 115 Katrina Victims

Karl Malone is my hero. He and I both agree that what is needed now are more bodies on the ground and not more money. Everything Karl Malone says in this article is 100% backed up by my experiences volunteering in the Katrina devestation zone. Sports by Brooks (hat tip: FARK):

"I wasn't going to just write a check, and I didn't want to go to New Orleans where all the celebrities were going (to grandstand). I wanted to go where no one was, and that's why we went to Pascagoula.

"We took six million dollars of equipment and most of the guys from my company (Malone Properties). But when we got there, they (federal officials) told us that because we wanted to work for free, we had to go home. That we needed a government ID number or a contract to haul out debris.

"I said to them, 'bullsh--', we took 30 pieces of equipment and traveled nine hours and we're going to clean up some lots before we leave. So I told them 'I'm getting on my truck, now try to get me off.' I had my security guys there and they tried to stop us but they couldn't - and we cleared 115 houses.

"Then they started to help us ... we had 46 trucks trying to keep up with us. I can't describe the scene. People were fighting over a pile of garbage."

After the experience, Malone now has a clear view of the quickest way to rebuild the storm-ravaged area: "The government has it all wrong. They need to stop trying to patch every house. It's time to start over. And people need to stop sending money. Send equipment and operators to move the debris out so they can rebuild."

Malone ought to be given a World Championship ring for his efforts. Now if we could only get John Stockton down there......

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:30 AM | Comments |

Canadian Jihad Website Shuts Down

Jihad Unspun, an English language website devoted to supporting terrorism, is shutting down. The Canadian based website was notorious for its overt support of terrorists actively engaged in fighting against fellow Canadian citizens.

The website claims it is shutting down because of a "decline in credible third party information sources and a lack of translation resources."

However, sources close to The Jawa Report claim that Jihad Unspun and its publisher, Khadija Abdul Qahaarbeen, have been under criminal investigation by Canadian authorities for some time. In addition to calling for armed resistance against Canadian troops in Afghanistan the website routinely publishes content which could be construed as 'hate speech' under Canadian law.

In April the U.S. State Department posted on its Web site an article entitled, A Trio of Disinformers: Islam Memo, Muhammad Abu Nasr, and Jihad Unspun." After noting that the Web site was owned by a Canadian woman who converted to Islam the article commented, "'Jihad Unspun' has a track record of spreading very unreliable allegations." (UPI)

The website has published many inflammatory articles in the past. For instance, Jihad Unspun published an article claiming that a U.S. soldier murdered a little girl on a bet.

GOOD RIDDANCE.

site_down_image.jpg

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:52 AM | Comments |

Stolen Valor and the Forgotten Faker

Interesting and thorough Veteran's Day piece by Anne Morse up over at the Weekly Standard on the phenomenon of people pretending to be war heroes. She notes that they almost always are given away by the magnitude of their lies; they're rarely content just to have been involved in a firefight or seeing a little action, but typically fabricate an improbably romanticized history as a Ranger or SEAL or death-dealing CIA operative (e.g., ahem, a CIA gunrunner behind the lines in Cambodia).

She finishes up talking about the execrable Jimmy Massey, the Marine Sergeant who spread slanderous lies about the awful things our servicemen had done to Iraqi civilians. It's good to keep wailing on Massey, but Morse forgot someone important. Someone the Left wants you to forget. Do y'all remember Micah Wright?

Micah Wright pretended to be a Ranger in Panama and built pretty much his whole career around that big fat stinkin' lie. And apparently he was one of those "you can't have an opinion if you haven't served, man!" types, who parlayed his attitude into a book deal and a lot of anti-war publicity. I first heard about this amazing, bald-faced lying liar over a year ago on what was then a pretty new blog--a fresh faced, take-on-all-comers tyro named Ace of Spades. Now little ol' Ace is all grown up and has his own radio show and everything--but you'll want to check out these cute snapshots from when he was just knee-high to a bloghopper and hadn't yet mastered singular pronouns.

And then you'll really want to skip over to Michele of ASV for her gleefully thorough dismantling of every last scrap of this wretched fake's dignity.

The unmasking of Micah Wright, who was emerging unquestioned into the mainstream as an anti-war voice, remains an unsung triumph of the blogosphere. If you are browsing on Veteran's Day, check out those links and give thanks that bloggers are out there relentlessly fact-checking the MSM's take on the war--and thereby honoring our fighting men.

UPDATE: While Michelle and Jim Treacher deserve credit for fact-checking Wright, keeping the pressure on him, and goading him into demonstrable lies, Washington Post reporter Richard Leiby is the one who got suspicious and filed FOIA requests for Wright's service record--and published an expose on May 2, 2004.

Another good account, by a victim of Wright's self-righteousness-ray, is here. Kevin Parrotts' summary of the event includes this important point about why remembering Wright's deception is important:

As a matter of fact, I think Micah Wright will end up getting more work and making more money off his lies than before they were discovered.

And that's the second reason I almost didn't write this. I have the feeling Micah Wright already knows what I just stated, and is eating up every minute of what's been going on. Micah wins.

Oh, sure, his new book of remixed WWII posters has been cancelled (for now), but no one I've read on the Net seems to have picked up on the hidden message in this sentence from the Seven Stories website:

The author's introduction will be removed from any future printings of YOU BACK THE ATTACK.
and again, from the Washington Post article which exposed him:

It also will remove from future printings of the first book his detailed and wholly fictional account of parachuting into Panama under fire during Operation Just Cause.
Instead of leaving in the lie, and providing some extra editorial commentary to place the incident in proper context, they're going to make it disappear. Just like it never happened at all.

And as for the "cancellation", I'll bet you'll see If You're Not A Terrorist...Then Stop Asking Questions! in print before the end of the year. They're going to wait for things to cool off a bit - then the presses will roll, Amazon will relist, and the Ranger scandal will never be mentioned again. Like it never happened at all.

DC comics will delay publication of his Vigilante series for a few months, because in a few months all of this will have blown over and no one will remember it. There are a lot of people working behind the scenes in different ways to make sure no one remembers it, I'm guessing.

Everyone loves and rewards a liar, it seems. Jayson Blair got a book contract; Stephen Glass got a book contract and ended up being played by Young Darth Vader on the silver screen. What will Micah get?


By See-Dubya at 03:45 AM | Comments |

Veteran's Day

Picture 940.gif

It's Veteran's Day.

Memorial Day is when we honor those that died to give us our freedom.

Veteran's Day is the day when you have your chance to say thanks, alive and in person, to those who will soon be memorialized.

I'm not naive, I know many of you do that every chance you get.

I served but never fought, and in some ways that disappoints me. But then I look back at my experience in the Navy and I realize that no matter what, my time in the Navy will guide me well for the rest of my life.

So I say thanks to all of those who went in before me, whose cumulative wisdom helped me become the man I am today.

By Vinnie at 02:56 AM | Comments |

We Are All French Today

And so it begins. What many of us thought of as a purely American media tendency to portray police or soldiers as villains while exalting criminals and terrorists is a French sport, as well.

From NEWS.com.au:

TF1, the television channel, showed a young Arab on the outskirts of Lyons objecting politely about the insulting manner of an officer who had demanded his identity papers.
"You want me to take you to a transformer?" the officer sneers back, referring to the electricity station where two teenagers were electrocuted while fleeing an identity check.

The incident sparked the riots.[merde de boeuf - Bluto]

"We don't give a shit if your estate calms down," said the officer, using the disrespectful "tu" rather than "vous".

"In fact, the more it gets f...ed up the happier we are."

Just when the French thought the Intifada was quieting down, a French Kevin Sites has decided to heat things up again. So a cop, who has probably been on duty for days, got fed up with a smartass remark from some arrogant pimple farmer. This minor incident needs to be reported all over the world (NEWS.com.au is an Australian outlet) and used as justification for the Muslim insurrection in Europe? No wonder the US has to step in and save these effeminate jackasses time after time.

A little further on we get some insight into why a cop in France might be a wee bit on edge:

"Casser les keufs" - beating up cops - is what they like doing best, say the young wreckers.

"We torch a car and when the keufs turn up, the fun starts," a teenager said with typical bravado at a northeast Paris estate.

When no cops are available perhaps these little chameaux sales might get into a little "casser les journalistes". Then you can bet you'll see editorials demanding more aggressive police presence.

Also posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto, where the French are mocked openly, sometimes in their own language.

By Bluto12:49 AM | Comments |

November 10, 2005

Look Up In The Sky! It's A Dictator, It's An Islamofascistprick, Its..

...The Chinless Wonder!

Analysis: Syria's Leader Remains an Enigma

Had it not been for the premature death of the eldest son of the Assad clan, Bashar al-Assad might well be enjoying the quiet life of a private medical practice in Damascus, or London, or perhaps Paris, as he speaks both English and French.

"When I first came here, this was all swamp. Everyone said I was daft to build a castle on a swamp, but I built it all the same, just to show them. It sank into the swamp. So I built a second one. That sank into the swamp. So I built a third. That burned down, fell over, then sank into the swamp. But the fourth one stayed up. And that's what you're going to get, Lad, the strongest castle in all of England." [er...Syria, - ed.]

But when his brother was killed in an automobile accident in 1994, his father, Syrian President Hafez al-Assad called him home from studies in London and began grooming him for a political life. Six years later, Hafez died and Bashar al-Assad was Syria's new president.

At the recent annual conference of the Middle East Institute in Washington, journalist and political analyst Hisham Melhem of al-Arabiya TV said that was one of the few mistakes by the wily Hafez al-Assad.

"One day, lad, all this will be yours."

"What, the curtains?"

"No, not the curtains, lad, all that you can see stretched out over the valleys and the hills! That'll be your kingdom, lad."

"But I would argue that one of his biggest mistakes, if you will, was to bequeath the realm, so to speak, to his son, a 35-year old inexperienced young man," he said. "Now, Bashar's era shows, I would argue, the pitfalls of political inheritance in the Arab world. And it's very hard, five years after he began his rule, to point out to a single domestic, regional or international decision that this regime made that was wise or farsighted. And I'm not being harsh on him."

"You fell out of the tall tower, you creep!"

"I was saved at the last minute."

But speaking at the Middle East Institute, investigative journalist Seymour Hersh warned against any rush to judgment of Syria, saying the United States has an agenda in the region.

"I'm exceedingly skeptical, and I have been all along, of the point of view of what happened to Hariri," said Mr. Hersh. "The American point of view is that it was Syria with the aid of some people in Lebanon. Despite all the back and forth about how the American press corps was totally manipulated, to its embarrassment, about WMD, I would still argue, we're still being totally manipulated by this administration about Syria and Lebanese involvement."

"Oh, fair one, behold, I am your humble servant Sir Launcelot Seymour. I have come to take...Oh, I'm terribly sorry!"

"You got my note!"

"Uh, well, I got a note."

"You've come to rescue me! I knew someone would! I knew that somewhere out there, there must be someone who..."

All this time, there's been something nagging in the back of my brain about Bashar the Chinless Wonder Assad.

Just tonight it hit me. He reminds me of the fruity prince from Monty Python and the Holy Grail.



Heh. First time I've ever been able to fisk something using movie quotes, but then, O Chinless One makes it all too easy.


Cross posted
at VAM

By Vinnie at 11:59 PM | Comments |

The New Red Crystal

Next month, representatives from 192 signatories to the Geneva Conventions are scheduled to meet to discuss adding a new emblem to represent the Red Cross and Red Crescent organizations. The new emblem is called the "Red Crystal."

Red Cross, Crescent, Crystal
Red Cross - Red Crescent - Red Crystal

The Swiss government is attempting to introduce the new emblem for use by national groups that reject the current Red Cross or Red Crescent. The Red Crystal would have no national, religious, or cultural connotations.

If adopted, it's believed the new emblem would also clear the way for Israel's membership. However, despite the good intentions of the Swiss, I'm convinced that Israel's membership won't occur easily and without controversy.

All that said, my thinking is that the new emblem looks more like a red square or a red diamond, not a red crystal.


[Update 11/11/05]

Interestingly, the geniuses in Geneva might want to consider the fact that the 'Red Crystal' is already being used as a firing range target. Sporting the 'Red Crystal' emblem in the confusion of battle could be a problem.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 11:18 PM | Comments |

Academic Freedom

Rusty wrote about this case the other day, but there's a new writeup here. This is the one where a tenured prof e-mailed a grad student blogger's faculty advisers to tell them he was pro life and get him in trouble.

By See-Dubya at 09:17 PM | Comments |

ACLU Can Now Accept Money From Terrorists

Hat tip: Stop The ACLU

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW YORK – The American Civil Liberties Union and 12 other national non-profit organizations today said they have successfully challenged Office of Personnel Management's Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) requirements that all participating charities check their employees and expenditures against several government watch lists for "terrorist activities" and that organizations certify that they do not contribute funds to organizations on those lists.

Well, now that is something to be excited about for the ACLU. Now they can knowingly accept money from terrorists. Furthermore, they can now contribute funds to people on terrorist watch lists.

This is a major victory for non-profit organizations that refused to be subjected to vague government requirements forcing us to become law enforcement officers for the federal government," said ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero. "We feel vindicated. List checking is not and has not been required by law."

Romero was referring to the Office of Personnel Management's final regulation posted in the Federal Register earlier this week, saying that it is dropping list-checking requirements. The regulation states: "Under the final rule, effective for 2006 and subsequent campaigns, OPM does not mandate that applicants check the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) List or the Terrorist Exclusion List (TEL)."

What a load of crap. Someone please explain what the CFC are thinking here. The ACLU refused this money at first, and refused to obey by the rules of the CFC. They later found a loop hole, by saying, "hey, notice the word "knowingly"? We could just not check the list, and then we could say we didn't know." Clever, eh? So they continued to get the money. Other organizations that tried to give the ACLU money and abide by the rules of the CFC were downright refused by the ACLU.

In October of 2004, the ACLU turned down $1.15 million in funding from two of it's most generous and loyal contributors, the Ford and Rockefeller foundations, saying new anti-terrorism restrictions demanded by the institutions make it unable to accept their funds.

"The Ford Foundation now bars recipients of its funds from engaging in any activity that "promotes violence, terrorism, bigotry, or the destruction of any state."

The Rockefeller Foundation's provisions state that recipients of its funds may not "directly or indirectly engage in, promote, or support other organizations or individuals who engage in or promote terrorist activity."

Well, no worries now! Its victory for the ACLU, as they put it. Its victory for those who want to harm America, thats what it is.

In 2003, the CFC generated more than $248 million from approximately 1,345,000 federal employees, according to the ACLU. The funds went to more than 10,000 participating non-profits that support our country's health and education systems, the arts and the environment, childrens' services and religious life. CFC contributions earmarked for the ACLU typically totaled about $500,000 per year; as a result of the policy, the organization lost more than $1 million in contributions.

Money, money, money, money!!!! Thats what the ACLU's talking about! I wonder what kind of religious life the ACLU are seeking to protect with this money. Most decent organizations wouldn't mind making sure their money didn't go to America's enemies, but for some strange reason the ACLU found this requirement burdensome. Oh, thats right, they are not decent.

"Watch list requirements and other misguided policies of today remind us of the now- discredited anti-Communist list checking of the early 1950's," said Romero. "It is no more justified now than it was then."

When was the anti-Communist list discredited? Oh, it was discredited by the ACLU's rewritten history. It was discredited because the ACLU say so.

Here's what the CFC letter said.

"I certify that as of (date), the organization in this application does not knowingly employ individuals or contribute funds to organizations found on the following terrorist related lists promulgated by the U.S. Government, the United Nations, or the European Union. Presently these lists include the Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control Specially Designated Nationals List, the Department of Justice's Terrorist Exclusion List, and the list annexed to Executive Order 13224. Should any change of circumstances occur during the year OPM will be notified within 15 days of such change."

Obviously the ACLU had a problem exluding terrorists from its funds and employment. What a shame. It begs two major questions here. Why would the ACLU have a problem exluding its funds from terrorists? And what is the CFC thinking by dropping this?

I don't know about you, but I feel safer already. Thanks ACLU!

By at 05:30 PM | Comments |

DEATH TO AL-ZAQUEERY

Yes my pet name for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi but I’m not the only one who wants him dead now. Today there were massive demonstrations in Jordan calling for Mr Zaqueery to quote “Burn in Hell”. Now there is one group of chanting protesters I can agree with. Early in the year it was apparent after the bombings in Egypt that Al-Qaeda in Iraq’s methods caused political problems for them. Mr. Zaqueery must have a short memory for now he has bombed Jordan. Moslems even those who sympathize with the cause or the root cause can no longer deny the pure evil of the Al-Qaeda doctrine. Even Palestine whom Al-Qaeda claims to be helping finds itself today a victim of the terrorists who kill in a cowardly random fashion. Coupled with protests in Morocco last week it is now apparent that the war on terror will be won. Both our pressure and the pure evil of their tactics have put the writing on the wall. The harder they try the more people hate them including peoples all over the Middle East. The world is shrinking every day for Al-Qaeda soon they will be history.

Palestinians murdered by Al-Qaeda this week CNN:

Officials from other governments, however, were among the dead. Four Palestinians, including Maj. Gen. Bashir Nafeh, head of Palestinian military intelligence, died in the blast at the Grand Hyatt, said chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat. Also killed was Col. Abed Allun; Jihad Fattouh, the brother of the Palestinian parliament speaker; and Mosab Khoma, Erakat said. The four were on their way back from Cairo, Egypt, he said, adding his condemnation of the attacks.

Way to go moron yeah you Zaqueery you rat bastard son of a thousand dogs.

By Howie at 03:14 PM | Comments |

Chief Bomb Maker for Jemaah Islamiyah Splodes Himself.

He saved the Indonesians the trouble and as far as I know the 27 raisins don’t count when you blow yourself up to avoid capture. Nope no raisins for you Mr Azahari Husin maybe if you had been Japanese and used Saki and a sword, looser!!!! Mr. Husin has been pursued relentlessly by Indonesian police and had been quite slippery barely escaping several times. Today his luck ran out.

CNN: The Australian-educated Azahari is accused of being a mastermind behind the deadly Bali bombings in 2002 and 2005… … Azahari Husin, a Malaysian in his late 40s, was believed to be the bomb expert for the Islamic terror network Jemaah Islamiyah, and to have written its bomb manual.

Dead man’s profile on TKB but his business has been taken care of.

Filthy seems pleased.

When informed of the passing of Mr. Husin my Aussie cube mate said, “Cool!”


By Howie at 11:58 AM | Comments |

The Politics of Identity and the Birth of a Meme

Max Boot has about the best analysis of the French riots, and their underlying causes, that I've seen. (h/t: Instapundit) It incorporates insights like those of Gabriel Gonzolez at Winds of Change without leaving the false impression that multiculturalism has been vindicated. But it isn't quite clear enough, for my taste, about why multiculturalism is bound to be a failed experiment.

The false account that is emerging is this: France has had a legacy of "assimilation" that derives from its history of colonialism, and in that view all assimilated peoples, of whatever race or religion, are "French." The argument is that this "assimilation paradigm" leaves no place for an independent ethnic identity, so its attempts to force everyone into a single category are bound to fail. Stating the problem this way leads to the conclusion that France simply hasn't been sufficiently multicultural. It's a convenient way of looking at the problem if one wants to avoid the obvious criticism that multiculturalism might be the problem, rather than the solution.

The flaw in this perspective is that it ought to be obvious to even the casual observer that the problem isn't that France has assimilated all of its colonial aspirants into the single "idea" of Gaulic Nationhood, but that it has utterly failed to do so. And the reason, as Boot points out, is also rather obvious: It's easier for an individual from an ethnic or religious minority to think of himself as American than French, because being American isn't a matter of ethnicity, while being French... is. The problem is one of identity.

Or stated another way, it's a matter of factionalization. According to James Madison in the Federalist Papers the failure of Europe's experimentation with representative forms of government was that the natural ethnic and religious faultlines in society were reinforced by socio-economic faultlines, creating factions whose battle for supremacy had a habit of sinking the ship that was supposed to be everyone's refuge. In a contest to set the form of the society, the society is sliced and diced to a bloody pulp. Recognize anything?

Once, as I was sitting in a hotel lobby with Martin Lipset, he explained this Madisonian concept of "cross-cutting alliances" that de-factionalized the American experiment in democracy, allowing it to succeed where all earlier experiments had failed. At the time I didn't quite understand why the adjective "cross-cutting" was used to modify "alliances." Strictly speaking "alliances" ought to have knit the factions together, and "cutting" just didn't seem very therapeutic. Ironically this therapeutic system would have been (had it existed) the fulfillment of the notion of multiculturalism, because it would have accommodated and even reinforced group sovereignty, weaving the "multicultural tapestry" that advocates of the notion say ought to be the ideal. But, in fact, it is precisely these factions that are shredded and neutered by the pragmatic alliances that Madison argued are the essence of a proper federalism. This version of liberalism is not kind to identity politics. The factions, rather than the society, are sliced and diced, pulverized, and pushed out of the long trends of history's highways and trade routes... leaving them open to commerce and comity.

The process of building such a society, therefore, bears a peculiar and not-entirely-incidental resemblance to the process of destroying a parasitic terrorist insurgency, fascinatingly described here by The Belmont Club. In this view American forces, who (due to their superior training and technology) can move freely in both the river valley and desert environments, have an advantage that allows them to "push" the insurgents continuously out of their stealth element by "cross-cutting" those same river valley routes. Similarly, in Madison's paradigm we gain an advantage by utilizing additional dimensions created by cooperation and open/fair competition that the culturally-bound one dimensional politics of identity seems to lack. In such a liberal society we are not only less bound by our ethnicities, but they are gradually de-weaponized and shredded.

Lipset documents, in Jews and the New American Scene the fact that successive waves of Jewish emigrants to the US lost a sense of their ethnic heritage over time, not because it was suppressed but because Americanism was a powerful substitute... providing an identity that didn't reference ethnicity. For the Jews, finding a place where they could relax about their heritage was like finding the Promised Land. It turns out that gaining this extra-dimensionality by going outside identity politics is what it's all about. And those able to achieve such a dimensional advantage will be able to prosper in all environments. The alliances do, indeed, cut the serpent into pieces, each of which tends to lack the critical mass to sustain a threatening life of its own. They wither....

This is the ultimate "push back" against identity politics.

By Demosophist at 10:58 AM | Comments |

British Muslim Threatens to Behead Bush, Mutilate Former President's Wife


A terrorist supporter from Bolton, England wishes he could behead the President of the United States and mutilate the former first lady, Barbara Bush. Here is a comment he left on a post about terrorists beheading an Iraqi:

FUK U ALL AMERICAN FUKKKKK EVERY MUTHA FUKIN AMERICAN FUKK GEORGE BUSH I WISH I CUD BEHEAD HIS ASS N CUT HIS MUMZ NIPZ OFF BUSH U DIEEE MUTHA FUKA N BLAIR U BURN IN HELL 2 N EVRY1 HU SUPPORT IM DIE WIV EM DIEE ALL U COWARD WYT BAASTARDZZ DIEEE U ALL GON GOT BEHEADED U BASTARDZ!!!....

Y DA FUK IZZIT DAT SUMFIN HAPPNZ N AMERICA ALWAYZ CHT SHIT BUSH FINKZ HES IT N HES DA MAN WEL HE GON DIE LYK AN ANIMAL

Hmm, I believe that such speech is illegal in Britain. Even if it comes from a wanna-be gangsta punk.

He also wants you to know that hurricane Katrina is Allah's retribution for too much drinking and too many girls, er, dancing:

W8 N C NO WONDA AMERICA GETIN FLOODED OH N YALL TELIN US 2 BLEEV UR GOD JESUS?? GOD BLESS AMERICA?? WERS GOD WEN ITS GETIN FLOODED?? DATS CUMIN FROM GOD AS A PUNISHMENT N U FUKIN SHITBAGZ DESERV IT FUK YALL HU SPORT BUSH N BLAIR COZ U GON DIE WIV EM NOT CUMIN FROM NO TERRORISTS NOT CUMIN FROM NO MUSLIMZ NOT CUMIN FROM NO1 DATS CUMIN FROM GODD!! N DRINKIN DANCIN GIRLZ N ALL DAT SHIT U TOKIN BOUT?
Oh, and Allah bless bin Laden:
ISLAM 4 LYF TIL DEF N DA END GOD IS WIV MUSLIMZ GOD IS WIV BIN LADEN -MEMBA DA FRASE( U CAN RUN BUT U CNT HYD?) WELL FINK TWICE BIN LADEN MDE DA IMPOSSIBLE REALITY N U WIL NEVA FIND IM COZ GOD IS WIV UZ!!
In another message he puts Jawa readers to a challenge
EVERY SINGLE MUTHA FUKA ON ERE U GOTA A PROBLEM DEN CUM FUK WID ME IF U GOT BALLZ!! YALL PUSSYZ SCARED OF BIN LADEN

Why not drop da hustla a line? He did invite you. nazam04@hotmail.com You don't need to be civil, but since numnuts did leave a valid IP this has been reported to the authorities in Britain, so don't say anything that could be construed as a threat.

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

Complaining About Big Breasts, Small Butts

Check out a recent feminist complaint from Australia.

A beer advertisement championing females with large breasts and a small behind has been slammed as portraying Australians as "a bunch of crude, sexist yobbos." The Foster's beer ad has been seen extensively throughout the Russian Federation. It depicts a bikini with a small top and a large bottom above the caption "the law of life." Below that is a bikini with a large top and a small bottom captioned "the law of Foster's."

The ad has prompted an angry response from Australian women. Women's Electoral Lobby Australia chairwoman Eva Cox said: "It is bloody stupid. "Why would they bother antagonising a whole pile of women who could drink Foster's? "Companies have got to get a bit smarter about this sort of stuff." (more)

Now, excuse me for being dense about this, but why would women be antagonized for being physically attractive? One could easily believe that Eva Cox wants women, in general, and any reference to female physical attributes, in particular, to be excluded from all advertising. Why? I don't know, but I'd suggest that this woman named Eva Cox would benefit from a day of stiff homonyms. She needs to lighten up.

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 06:37 AM | Comments |

Al Qaeda Claims Amman Blasts

According to a an unverified statement on an Islamist website, Al Qaeda in Iraq takes responsibility for the triple bomb attacks on Amman hotels.

From ABC News Online:

"A group of our best lions launched a new attack on some dens," the statement said.

"After casing the targets, some hotels were chosen which the Jordanian despot turned into a backyard for the enemies of the faith, the Jews and crusaders."

The statement was signed by a spokesman for Al Qaeda in Iraq.

The admission comes as no surprise since al Qaeda was suspected from the very beginning. That said, it is odd that many hours transpired before they claimed responsibility.

By at 06:16 AM | Comments |

Perspective

Scooter Libby, SCOTUS, off year elections...

Kristallnacht.

History has a bad habit of slapping us with the hand of reality, doesn't it?

By Vinnie at 02:25 AM | Comments |

The New Troll From Seoul

Some of you readers have expressed your irritation at a persistent troll in the comments section calling itself "Route Irish". The IP traces back to Seoul, just like another infamous lefty spamtard we used to have around here.

Such creatures never engage in debate, they just come in and leave links to "From the Wilderness" and droll asides like BUSHY McCHIMPHITLERBACON!!!.

Do other bloggers have this persistent problem of Kim-Jong-Illin' Commie-troll Nork-Porkers leaving anti-American scat in their comments? Or is the Jawa Report just unusually fortunate?

By See-Dubya at 12:53 AM | Comments |

November 09, 2005

Idle Speculation

I wonder whether the imminent attack that was foiled in Australia was planned to go down today. It would be consistent with Al Qaeda's M.O. to try to arrange simultaneous attacks--and quite ambitious to try it on different continents.

UPDATE: Commenter Patrick points out that it's 11-9.

Or as the English and many other countries would represent the date, it's 09/11/2005.

By See-Dubya at 06:02 PM | Comments |

Explosions in Amman, Jordan

(Amman, Jordan) Eighteen people are reported dead from explosions at three major Amman hotels about two hours ago. Suicide bombers are suspected. More than 120 injured.

From the JPost:

"The attacks carry the trademark of al-Qaida," one police official said on condition of anonymity in line with police regulations. "However it is not certain. We are investigating."

The explosions struck the Grand Hyatt, Radisson SAS and Days Inn hotels. A police officer at the Radisson site said it was caused "apparently by a bomb."

The hotels, in the commercial Jebel Amman district, are frequented by American and European businessmen and diplomats. The Radisson, in particular, is popular with Israeli tourists, and was a target of several foiled al-Qaida plots in the past.

Developing ...


[Update 1625 EST]

From Reuters, at least 23 people are now reported dead from three suspected suicide bombers in the three hotels.

The explosion at the Radisson Hotel occurred in a banquet room where 300 people were attending a wedding reception. The room was adjacent to a bar which security sources believe was the intended target.

The stone entrance to the Grand Hyatt was completely shattered. Hyatt General Manager Otto Steenbeek stated the explosion was in the bar area and caused many casualties.

The blasts came without warning or any hint from intelligence. Thus far, no claims of responsibility have been received.

Television news reports that suicide bombers are believed to have walked into the hotels. Videotape surveillance footage should be available. Similarities are being drawn to last month's bombings in Bali where suicide bombers walked into restaurants.


[Update 1640 EST]

Fox News reports that a Jordanian security force spokesman has confirmed that there are 53 dead. The explosions are believed to be the first organized simultaneous terrorist attacks in Jordan.


[Update 1700 EST]

From Lawhawk, it seems there may have been some warning that Jordan was a target for an imminent attack. Check out Hammorabi who posts an alert that Zarqawi has been planning an attack in Jordan. The source of the information is not clear.


[Update 1745 EST]

(via television newscasts) The Jordanian Deputy Prime Minister Marwan Muasher said there were two suicide bombers and a car bomb. The Hyatt and Radisson were attacked by suicide walk-ins, the Days Inn was attacked with a car bomb. The death toll has increased to 57.

The AP reports approximately 300 wounded. The borders of Jordan have been sealed and a search is underway for collaborators.

Jordan's King Abdullah blamed a "deviant and misled group" for the attacks. The Jordanian cabinet is in an emergency session.

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 02:34 PM | Comments |

'Deport non-French rioters'

Sacre Bleu! A Frenchman actually displaying some stones.

Paris - Interior minister Nicolas Sarkozy on Wednesday issued orders for non-French rioters convicted in the wave of urban violence to be deported - a measure directed at youths of Arab and African background living in the high-immigrant neighbourhoods involved in the unrest.

Sarkozy told prefects, or regional governors, to apply the order to foreigners including those who have valid French residency visas.

He told parliament that "120 foreigners, not all of whom are here illegally, have been convicted" of taking part in the nightly rampages that have occurred since October 27.

"I have asked the prefects to deport them from our national territory without delay, including those who have a residency visa," he said.

Companion OpiniPundit

By at 01:38 PM | Comments |

WTW On the Elevator with KISS.

I’m sorry I’m just beyond words this is a whole new level of suckage.

You can’t believe your eyes (or ears)
What you heard weren’t lies
My love is too much to hold
This can’t be sold, Oh NOOOOO!!!!!.

Here are your White Trash Wednesday bloggers

Yep ruined me for the day. I'm going to the car to try and get this out of my head. I'm not really much of a Kiss fan but I did have AliveII on 8 track and saw them once. Good show if you like the show part.

By Howie at 11:26 AM | Comments |

French Riots

I was reading a story on CNN today that really got me to thinking. First off, we have this really wonderful title to the story: French riots erupt despite curfew. What, exactly, were they expecting to happen? Let's run over this concept one more time for the uninformed. If you have people who are already breaking the law, creating new laws is not a deterrant. I realize this is a hard concept for you to grasp, but the same people who are out there destroying cars and breaking windows and starting fights are not going to go "Gee! The government just imposed a curfew! I'd better stay inside or I might get in trouble!"

Now I just want to make sure I have this straight. France is one of the most socialist countries in the world without being outright communist. Right? Their workers, from what I understand, only have to work 32 hours a week. Now, if this great "socialist experiment" actually worked the way that liberals claim, why do they have a problem with poor minorities rioting? Heck, according to their theories, there shouldn't be any poor minorities! But, sometimes even the most hardcore liberal must wake up and face reality. And the reality in this case is that there are poor out there who have been left behind even by your wonderful socialist system and they are currently destroying your fair city.

And yet I have to wonder why President Chiraq isn't ordering his battalions of psychiatrists in to battle this problem? Isn't that the liberal approach? Aren't you supposed to talk with the aggressor? Attempt to understand his position and sympathize with his needs? Isn't that what we were supposed to do in France?

Well, I now call on Chiraq to stand behind his words. Withdraw your police forces, Jacques! These rioters are just misunderstood! Killing them, or even containing them, would be a violation of their civil rights. And it's clearly evident that they don't want your police force in their neighborhood. I call on you now to end your violent occupation of these streets! Continuing to attempt to stop these rioters will only cost innocent suburbanites their lives! It is time to bring forth your negotiators. Find out what the rioters want and appease them. Only through talk can you find the true path to peace!

And sadly, Jacques, if you cannot find it in your heart to pull out these occupying police forces, I must label you the biggest rioter of all!

By at 09:43 AM | Comments |

Blogs coordinating riots?

Paris prosecutors opened an inquiry Tuesday into two young bloggers who urged French youths to riot and revolt against the police, a judicial official said.

The bloggers are 16 and 18 years old. I can't tell from this description whether they are just suspected of inciting the riots or coordinating them. Either way they face up to five years in Le Hoosegow.

How come this kind of thing never happens in Iran or Syria?

By See-Dubya at 04:46 AM | Comments |

The German Galloway

Prominent German anti-war guy is under investigation for Oil-for-Fraud ties. Not only is he an outspoken critic of the U.S., but he also actually worked in the U.N. Oil-for Food program under Benon Sevan, the head UN crook in charge of inspecting Saddam's oil deals and making sure they were kosher. Sevan himself is, of course, deeply implicated in the scandal as well.

Tip of the fez to Barcepundit.

By See-Dubya at 04:37 AM | Comments |

November 08, 2005

"Spiritual Wickedness in High Places"

The Anchoress passes along the chilling testimony of Marianne, a scared, lonely Catholic writing in from France.

As much as I dislike French politics and relentlessly give them a hard time here, I pray for France's deliverance from these evil times.

By See-Dubya at 09:40 PM | Comments |

Same-Sex Marriage Outlawed in Texas

(Austin) With over 472 thousand votes counted, Texas voters have overwhelmingly passed a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Called Proposition 2, voters came out in favor by a 3 to 1 margin. Nobody should be surprised. For cryin' out loud, this is Texas we're talking about.

Although same-sex marriage is already prohibited by state law, supporters of Proposition 2 believed constitutional guidance was necessary to prevent political subdivisions from creating or recognizing any legal status identical to or similar to marriage. Also included are marriage-like legal status relationships created outside of Texas.

I believe 'created outside of Texas' means Massachusetts right now.

By at 09:04 PM | Comments |

Californians, to the barricades!

There's still time to vote for prop 73, a very common sense initiative that begins to restore the proper balance of family authority over the state's in making moral decisions. And for Prop 74--tenure for public school teachers? Please. Given the discussions of academic freedom on this blog by our pseudonymous host, I don't think junior-high health teachers are in the same need of tenure that Rusty is.

XRLQ has a sensible guide if you're curious about this stuff.

Oh! There's still time to vote down San Fran's odious Preparation H, oh wait, Proposition H (One of them really chaps my hindquarters, the other relieves it...). Gun laws in California are draconian enough, thank you.

Polls are open till 8, I think, so do your duty.

UPDATE: Well, bugger that. I'm off to buy earthquake supplies.

By See-Dubya at 06:52 PM | Comments |

Good Gay Cheerleaders Busted

This is an outrage!!!!!!

Yahoo News : Carolina Panthers cheerleaders, Renee Thomas, left, and Angela Keathley, shown in these Hillsborough County, Fla., Sheriff's Office booking photos, were arrested early Sunday, Nov. 6, 2005 after a bar dispute that broke out after patrons complained the women were allegedly having sex in a bathroom stall. (AP Photo/Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office)

All charges must be dropped immediately. In fact is there any way we can work this into the halftime or like maybe they all kiss after a Touchdown? I would appreciate it.



By Howie at 06:51 PM | Comments |

You Think You're So Smart?

Prove it. Take the Office Space quiz. I suck. I got a 65%.

By at 05:20 PM | Comments |

Transvestite Terrorists Taken Down By Iraqi Soldiers

With Operation Steel Curtain underway, terrorist insurgents trapped by the operation are turning to desperate measures to avoid capture or death. Like dressing up as female and hiding among women and children.

From a CENTCOM press release:

Iraqi Army Soldiers shot and killed three terrorists dressed in women’s clothing near the entrance to the safety zone established for displaced persons. The trio brandished weapons as they neared the checkpoint the Iraqi Soldiers were manning, but were unable to use them before being killed by the Soldiers. Iraqi Soldiers identified the terrorists as foreign fighters. The three terrorists were trying to hide among the women and children and gain access to the area for residents temporarily displaced.

Armed terrorists used a similar tactic at a police checkpoint Nov. 5 in the town of Buhriz, 35 miles north of Baghdad. While the terrorists posed as women, they killed six police officers and wounded many civilians.

My sources tell me that foreign-born brave jihadi babyhunter transvestites can be identified by their preference for sequined thong undergarments, while Iraqi terrorist insurgents usually wear the more traditional garter belts and fishnet stockings.

trannyterror.jpg

Also posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto, where whickerbills don't count.

By Bluto04:00 PM | Comments |

Ze Riots In Francais

I haven't commented on these riots in France (and most of Europe for that matter) because they are simply ludicrous. Why? You don't immigrate to a country to make it your own or to carve out your own enclave. Unless, of course, you're Muslim. It's a well known fact that if you're a non-Muslim in Muslim lands that you are required to do one of three things:

1) Convert to Islam
2) Pay a heavy fine or tax
3) Be put to death

If you're a Muslim and are offended by this dark spot in the Quaran I'm bringing up then maybe it's time to think about what your religion really stands for.

Let's put a few things together here. A Muslim in France immigrated there because of "opportunity". However, after a year or two of living in France the Muslim finds that the opportunity in socialist France is quite limited. The Muslims all start to recognize this and begin congregating in neighborhoods, mosques, and communities and start seeing that there are many more people like them. Eventually, a "just outside of mainstream" Muslim is going to recognize this. Then the pressure to further grow Allah's lands comes down from a handful of imams and Islamic religious leaders. At that point, all you need is a spark and apparently the Muslim rioters across Europe have found that spark and they won't be stopped until the land is Allah's or a ten year peace is established (read up on the significance of ten year peace agreements in a history of Islam).

The riots in France (the supposed leader of Europe) are well into their second week. The riots have spilled out of France and into other countries in Europe. So what should the French do? I would have dropped the hammer a while ago and stopped putting out the fires and started shooting the people starting them. But that's not the French's style. Instead, the French president Jacques Chirac is allowing curfews. Way to show that muscle France!

It's been said a few times before but Europe is the next battleground in the war on terror and the weakness of countries like France is evidence as to why.

Originally Posted at Conservative Thinking

By at 12:06 PM | Comments |

Graphic Pics of Coalition in Action

Here at The Jawa Report we bring you the images the MSM just can’t or won’t bring you. These terrible images of war uncensored and uncut so you may know the truth. No MSM whiney censor for political correctness here.

Warning: Graphic uncensored photos the MSM just can’t show you, click to view below the break.

Warning: This is your last chance stop now before you see what the MSM won’t show you.
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Bulgarian soldier assists little girl, How horrid I'm not sure I will ever be the same. See below for terrible pics of US forces dirty work.
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Oh the humanity???!!!

By Howie at 10:31 AM | Comments |

Annoy a Pain in the Ass

Yes the fun comments this week are here for those of you who like this sort of thing. Have fun.

Two birds with one stone Carnival of Liberty XIX is up at The Unrepentant Individual. Because I like Roman numerals.

By Howie at 08:50 AM | Comments |

Leftist McCarthyism in the Academy

If you haven't been following how one Professor of History at the University of Northern Iowa has been trying to sink the academic career of Ph.D. student (and good friend of the Jawa Report) Paul Deignan of Info Theory, you should. It seems that Paul had the nerve to make a pro-life argument in the comments section of a liberal blog. And that, says the liberal professor, should disqualify Paul from getting a Ph.D.

Jeff Goldstein has summarized the exchange here along with phone numbers and e-mails of the relevant parties. Go give Paul your support.

Note to fellow non-tenured academic bloggers and graduate students: blog anonymously or risk your career. Yes, it is that bad at the modern university.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 08:19 AM | Comments |

Ohio Voter Guide

Today is Election Day and Ohio citizens will be asked to decide on five controversial statewide issues. Having reviewed each of the five issues, Interested-Participant recommends the following:

ISSUE 1 - Vote NO
- Issue 1 would allow the bureaucrats and politicians to spend $2 billion from a bond issue on roads, bridges, and R & D. I see it as another spending scam, costing the taxpayer at least $2 billion. Before voting, think about just how much more of your money you want the state to piss away.
ISSUE 2 - Vote NO
- Issue 2 is nothing more than a scheme to allow for new and innovative ways to queer the voting system. Presumably, it lets voters mail in absentee ballots for any reason up to 35 days before an election. This is ludicrous. Election Day is the day people should cast votes unless there's a good reason for having to vote absentee.
ISSUE 3 - Vote NO
- Issue 3 would amend the state constitution to delineate the dollar amounts allowed to be contributed to political candidates. Tellingly, Issue 3 contains more words than the Declaration of Independence and would be more suitable as a state law or regulation than a constitutional amendment.

That said, it's bad either way. Unions could take members' dues and give to political campaigns without consent of the member. It places restrictions on advertising, who can contribute, and when contributions are allowed. In its entirety, Issue 3 is a solid promise that near every politician and contributor will end up in noncompliance and, possibly, in court. The measure is a nightmare and it doesn't belong in the constitution.

ISSUE 4 - Vote NO
- Issue 4 would amend the Ohio Constitution to create a redistricting commission to determine legislative districts. This commission would be unelected and stuffed with political appointees. Voters would have no recourse if the commission acted inappropriately or unfairly. Essentially, redistricting would be in the hands of bureaucrats. Do we need more bureaucrats in Ohio? Bureaucrats that spend and spend and are unaccountable to the voters? I think not.
ISSUE 5 - Vote NO
- Issue 5 would change the constitution to eliminate a significant part of the Ohio Secretary of State's job. Issue 5 would create a commission of political appointees to oversee elections. Consequently, if the measure is passed, no longer will a person (Secretary of State) be responsible for the integrity of the election process. Responsibility will be with a bunch of people pointing fingers at other people. Therefore, nobody will be accountable for election problems.

Listen, when the founders of the constitution assigned responsibility, they knew what they were doing and, so far, their decisions have worked well for over a century. There's no overriding reason to restructure the constitutionally mandated government. What's next? Do we replace the governor with a commission?

Any prudent observer of politics knows that Issues 2 through 5 are attempts by Democrats to influence the outcome of elections without getting additional people to vote for them. That's the problem these four (Issues 2 through 5) measures are addressing. Being unable to win elections in the old fashioned way has proven to be too big a hurdle, so the Democrats are trying to change the system in their favor.

Issue 1, on the other hand, is simply a tax and spend implement. No rational thinking voter would believe that the government needs more money nor more leeway on how they spend it. Anyone voting for Issue 1 should accompany his/her ballot with a power of attorney document to allow the state to confiscate all assets. Issue 1 is advertised as a "jobs" measure. Don't believe it. Issue 1 is a "spending" measure.

In conclusion, despite the fact that all of these five statewide issues are bad law, they don't belong in the Ohio Constitution. The Ohio Constitution is the upper-tier, controlling document for governing the state of Ohio. It should not be the document to dictate day-to-day operations of state agencies which is what Issues 1 through 5 do. Everyday operations of the state should be mandated in rules, laws, and regulations passed by the legislature. A state worker shouldn't have to consult the Ohio Constitution on a daily basis to do his/her job.

Remember, vote NO on State Issues 1 through 5.

Companion at I-P.

By at 07:13 AM | Comments |

November 07, 2005

Terroists Foiled Again.

Foiled I say. Last week John Howard (great name) announced that Australia had intelligence that they were a target for a major terrorist attack. This week they arrest 15 possibly stopping an attack in the final stages of planning. My Aussie Cube mate says hold their head in the billabong till they are ready to talk.

FOXNEWS: "I'm satisfied that we have disrupted what I would regard as the final stages of a large scale terrorist attack ... here in Australia," Moroney told Australian Broadcasting Corp. radio.

Here we are dancing to some tune about roos and dangerous wallabies and stuff. Aussie folk are good Joes.

By Howie at 04:39 PM | Comments |

Off Year Elections Tuesday

First we have California ballot initiatives. See California Conservative.

Also tomorrow New Jersey and Virginia select Governors and NYC selects a Mayor.

This post is open to any and all NJ, Virginia, NYC or California election related posts. So fight it out boys & girls tomorrow’s votin’ time

By Howie at 04:12 PM | Comments |

Muslim group warns on anti-terror laws (Great Britain)

Sounds like a threat to me.....

The government’s anti-terror legislation risks fueling community tensions similar to those that provoked violence in France, the Islamic Human Rights Commission has warned.

“What may happen here, as in France, is a sense of growing alienation of Muslims that feels excluded from mainstream society and that could be very dangerous,” Massoud Shadjareh, the commission’s chairman, told the FT.

In recent weeks, Muslim organisations, including the Muslim Council of Britain and the Muslim Association of Britain, have raised concerns about the new terror laws.

But the critique of the government’s anti-terror strategy, published on Monday by the commission, challenged attempts by the prime minister to play down the concerns.

......the report suggests that the hardening of the political language used by Mr Blair in August, and the government’s drafting of new terror laws, is setting back hopes of building a political consensus, and weakening the desire of Muslims to integrate into Britain’s multicultural society.

Do what we say and no one get's hurt, see.

In related news Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin gets tough and threatens curfews in certain suburbs "if neccessary".

Companion OpiniPundit

By at 02:34 PM | Comments |

French Riots Spread.

Don’t miss Traderrob’s post over the weekend on the Paris riots. This has now spread beyond the borders of France. Europe is always being so sweet. We must understand them and assimilate them. Wait a minute it’s not them who is the target of assimilation it’s us. They want us assimilated. The enemy will continue to take advantage of our tolerance as part of their strategy. When reacted against they fade away then just when you think it’s getting better boom they are back. See they are thinking longer term than we in the west. We can’t wait to get back to our bag of chips and the TV. We can’t wait for the fantasy that this is all a Bush scheme for oil to come true so we can pop open a fresh bag of Ruffles. Why because the truth is just so inconvenient. How bothersome that we will have to put aside our better qualities and fight tough and hard. The terrorists are betting we can’t put down the bag of chips and will wishful think our way strait to defeat. We can defeat the terrorists, no problem. They don’t have a society and I dare say a chance in hell to defeat us unless we hand it to them. But we can defeat ourselves and the jury is still out on that. Will the world wake up and see the truth for what it is or will we all descend into politics as usual and bicker why they quietly position themselves for the next battle?

Traderrob:What do decades of idle submission and spineless obeisance under the guise of tolerance reap?

Yahoo:

As urban unrest spread to neighboring Belgium and possibly Germany, the French government faced growing criticism for its inability to stop the violence, despite massive police deployment and continued calls for calm.

See Captain's Quarters for more.

Captain Ed: The riots in France have little connection to the Islamist terrorist offensive against the West, if the American media coverage gives any indication. However, alert CQ reader Mr. Michael points out that both American and French media sources warned of coordinated Islamist action against France in the weeks before the riot.


What is the second most plentiful element? What is Stupid? Ding ding ding ding ding. You win your very own brand new super exciting sofa.

Skipping the Paris Layover en route to Beruit? Times are changing.

Mark in Mexico.

How many rioters who feel that "it's fun to set cars on fire," and that Napolean cocktails "make a huge bang," and that "This is just the beginning," and "It's not going to end until there are two policemen dead," are seeking "divine grace and satisfaction", much less really give a damn about Fatwas and the like?


By Howie at 12:38 PM | Comments |

Anti Al-Qaeda Demonstrations in Morocco.

Al Qaeda’s recent kidnapping and threat to Murder two Morroccan hostages has resulted in massive protests in Morocco. Gateway Pundit has the story.

Thousands marched through Morocco's biggest city on Sunday to protest Al-Qaeda's decision to kill two Moroccan hostages in Iraq. Holding banners and chanting "Muslims are brothers. A Muslim does not kill his brother" and "Yes to freedom, No to terrorism and barbarity,"

By Howie at 12:27 PM | Comments |

Rino Sightings at Tinkerty Tonk

Raging Rinos. The Rage is un-caged


By Howie at 12:24 PM | Comments |

Rockefeller, Levin and Feinstein on Truth and Method

The aim stated by Senators Rockefeller, Feinstein and Levin, for the second phase of the work by the Committee to Investigate Pre-Iraq Intelligence is to "assess" whether the intelligence "justified" the public statements made by the Bush Administration. It presumes that the members of this committee can, and will, apply some consistent unbiased standard to the correspondence between the certainty and uncertainty about what we knew and what administration officials said. They're apparently going to close the gap between natural and scientific language that Habermas and Gadamer left open. That'll be fun.

But, why do we need a Senate Intelligence Committee to go through these kinds of heuristic deliberations? What makes their rule of thumb better than my rule of thumb, as a citizen, concerning the public statements of our officials? Doesn't their hubris imply a whopping condescension toward those of us in the Peanut Gallery? Why is Carl Levin's opinion about the President's Niger statement better than mine? Will he take into account the fact that Wilson's own debrief with the CIA supported concerns that Iraq was interested in buying uranium, and that the intelligence agencies of the UK and France still maintain that Iraq was seeking such a buy? Or will he just gauge the statement against the common meme that Wilson was truthful in his NYT dispatch, and that he has adequately debunked that whole yellow-cake myth by sipping a little sweet tea in Africa? Anyone taking bets?

And doesn't the urgency placed on this report by the unprecedented grandstanding of the Democrats also imply a profoundly statist deference toward the black-box hermeneutic/analytic skills of a group of high-placed non-experts? Next thing we know they'll be proposing to re-write the New Testament in order to make it more "accurate." They could sure help us out by "assessing" the extent to which the certainties and uncertainties about the Resurrection justify the many public statements about it by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. About time they got around to that, dontcha think?

And how much is this Report from Mount Olympus going to cost us, anyway? Couldn't we just siphon that to the victims of Katrina, Rita, and Wilma? Frankly I'd rather have a comprehensive audit of FEMA. That would make some sense.

By Demosophist at 10:43 AM | Comments |

First Hand Report From The Gulf Coast Two Months After Katrina

Fifteen miles from the Gulf Coast we arrive at a small town where we will work for the weekend. The devastation is surreal. It is like a war zone.

Boats on top of houses. Houses on top of cars. Everywhere there is garbage. Here and there a space has been cleared for a temporary FEMA trailor to park.

Power lines are working, but on a given block perhaps only a quarter of residents are back. Living in trailors, living in tents.

"How deep was the water?" I ask an old African-American preacher living in a tent across the street from his church and next to an open cess-pool. "Eighteen feet deep over yonder," he says.

It was saltwater. We are fifteen miles from the Gulf.

"Did you get out?" I ask the oldtimer.

"The Lord blessed me. I climbed into the top of that oak tree."

He was in that tree for eight hours as 175 mile an hour wind--- with all the dibris it carries--pelted him.

I am shocked that he is alive. What is more shocking is that his little great-grandson was in the tree with him. His granddaughter was in the tree with them. She is nine months pregnant. She has the baby the next day.

Two more houses and the story is the same. The middle-age woman, sitting on her four-wheeler that she has somehow managed to get running again, sat out the storm in another giant oak tree. Her RV is neatly stacked on top of a neighbor's Pontiac.

"Why did you stay?" I ask.

"I wasn't going to leave my animals. Not my horse."

The horse swam under the tree she was in several hours later. The water swept out to sea as fast as it came in. The horse survived somehow and came home the next day. One of her dogs was not so lucky.

Spray paint everywhere and on everything.

"Janet LaGrange and family alive and safe."

"House of broken dreams."

Orange X's on everything, signaling the house or car has been cleared. 0's in one corner of the X--no bodies.

Mostly names and addresses painted in two foot lettering on the sides of what were once houses. Forwarding addresses, cell phone numbers, and messages to neighbors spray painted on anything that looks like a flat surface.

"God Bless America. We will rebuild"

Done clearing debris for the day, we head to the coast.

The closer we get the more the war zone analogy becomes apt. Where we were working it was mortar and Howitzer bombardment. Three miles from the beach it is heavy ordinance. It is like the Navy decided to shell the town from some unseen WWII battleship. The once touristy town is almost no more. Traffic lights in working order already, but almost no traffic.

Half a mile from the beach: napalm. All of the trees either down or dead.

The beach. Fine white sand. Looking at the Gulf of Mexico for the first time in my life I am tempted to jump in.

I turn around, my back to the water. Driveways. Dozens of them. They lead to nowhere. This close to the water there is almost no debris. It is clear and reasonably clean. The houses have all been washed out to sea or are sitting as piles some blocks in.

We should have camped here on the beach. The devestation has made it beautiful.

A six man crew with six chainsaws. We cleared nearly nearly 50 trees from a dozen homes in two days.

To finish the job of just clearing the devestation will require more people. Many more people. Thousands of people. Hundreds of thousands of people.

And even with hundreds of thousands of more people, it will take years. Many years.

Sorry, no pictures. We are not on vacation and I will not make these people's shattered lives a voyeuristic spectacle.

Addendum: Money will not be enough. The Red Cross is providing food. FEMA is providing shelter. Churches are providing clothing and other support.

What is needed is more bodies on the ground. There are simply not enough people to do the work necessary to clean up, let alone rebuild. If you've donated money to one of dozens of charities, thank you. However, donating your time, skills, and labor would be so much more valuable at this time.

It is really simple to help out. Get four to six of your friends together in a truck, bring chainsaws, shovels, rakes, wheelbarrows (or heavy equipment if you have it) and head on down to the coast anywhere between New Orleans and Florida. Bring tents, there will be no hotel rooms to sleep in. Bring food, it took us an hour to find a restaraunt open and the Wal Mart closed at 7 p.m. because they don't have enough employees to keep it open.

There will be no trouble finding people to help. It is that bad.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:14 AM | Comments |

November 06, 2005

Tornado Strikes Evansville Area 12 Confirmed Dead

We had some storms blow through here last night. We had lightning and wind and some rain. I love storms and slept like a rock. No damage here but I get up this morning to find a tornado struck the Evansville-Newburgh, Indiana. From reports on WTVW it was pretty bad. CNN is also covering.

CNN:Adam Groupey, deputy director of emergency management for Evansville and Vanderburgh County, said the tornado touched down about 2 a.m. in Henderson County, Kentucky, then hit an Evansville mobile home park before moving into Warrick County.

Here is the list of shelters and phone numbers WTVW is posting this AM for people needing shelter or attempting to locate family members.

Shelters Set Up Phone Numbers by WTWW: (Note southern Indiana area code is 812)

* Deaconess Hospital -- 450-5000.

* St. Mary`s Hospital -- 485-4496.

* St. Mary`s Warrick -- 897-4800.

* National Guard Armory in Evansville -- 469-4020.

* Henderson, KY shelter -- 270-827-7700.

* Zion Baptist Church -- 853-8828.

*Castle High School -- 305-1926.(moving to Crossroads Church at 3:00pm due to lack of power).

Shelters Set Up To Assist in Relief by WTWW.* The Vanderburgh County Red Cross has set up a shelter at their main office just off of the Lloyd Expressway.

* The Warrick County Red Cross has a temporary shelter in the south gym at Castle High School. Since there is no power at the school, the shelter will be moved to Crossroads Christian Church at 3 p.m. today.

* The Epworth United Methodist Church at the corner of Epworth and Lincoln has set up a shelter. They have breakfast available, and will have soup and sandwiches later today. They will also have showers available.

 Souls Harbor Church will be serving meals this afternoon from 1:30 to 5 p.m. today. The church is located at 2126 Cass Avenue.

Note : The East Side Wal Mart and National Guard Armory are also taking people. Diapers were noted to be in short supply at at least one shleter.


The Vanderburgh Co. Coroner’s Office is confirming 12 dead, more have been reported. A state of emergency has been declared in Warrick County IN. The National Guard has arrived in affected areas as well as much private equipment & local law enforcement to dig through houses in the search for Victims. The weather is good this AM which should help. Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels is expected to arrive this afternoon. Eville's airport is on the North side so no problem there.

Others: Jay at Stop the ALCU and In the Angora.

Other Eville Area Outlets.

WFIE
WEHT
WEVV
Evansville Courier & Press

Update: So far confirmed 22 deaths. The path of the storm took it over Ellis Park Raceway killing several race horses and then Eastward leaving a path as wide as 500 yards and 35 to 40 miles long. The storm missed the denser areas of the city but struck smaller towns and suburbs to the south and east. Mrs. Stella Rawlings and her husband stepped out so see the entire area around their home destroyed The elderly couple credited their minor damage and tremendous luck to the Lord


By Howie at 12:54 PM | Comments |

Deck O' Bloggers 2005 Nominations

I got a tip from A Person in Florida that Aaron's:cc is putting together a "Blogopoly-style playing card in a commemorative end-of-year blogger alter-ego meme." Make sense? I'll let Aaron explain:

I'm taking nominations via trackbacks to this post. I'll be seeding the nominations with some of the obvious candidates.

Yes, you can self-nominate via a single trackback, but give a good (based on merit or humor is best) reason why you should be in the running. "My blog [your blog name here] should be eligible in the [suit name] suit poll because [reason here]." Something that may give me a visual idea to riff on is best.

If you can get a Higher Being, Mortal Human or Playful Primate to nominate you, 10 votes will be added to your vote total.

Link-whoring? Yeah, a bit. But how much are a piece of custom photoshopping unique to your blog, a good laugh and bragging rights worth?

The sample Queen of Hearts and King of Diamonds are NOT the final drafts. Final photoshops will be a complete unique card.

Nominations end at 9pm PDT the night before each poll.

More details on the process are here. I'm sure Rusty will have something to add on this subject when he gets a chance.

Companion post at Interested-Participant.

By at 11:29 AM | Comments |

French gov't powerless as worsening riots spread from Paris

Paris is Burning (and it's citizenry) Part Trois

What do decades of idle submission and spineless obiesance under the guise of tolerance reap?

PARIS (AFP) - Gangs of youths again stoned police and set cars ablaze as France's worst rioting in more than a decade raged for its eighth straight night, sparking fears that racial and social divisions were fuelling growing violence.

They have also taken on an increasingly dangerous tone, with buckshot fired at riot squad vans -- and prosecutors revealing that a handicapped woman was deliberately set on fire the night before.

According to prosecutors Friday, the 56-year-old woman was unable to get off a bus targeted by a Molotov cocktail late Wednesday in the northern Paris suburb of Sevran. She was allegedly doused with petrol by one youth, then others threw a flaming rag on her. Rescued by the driver, she was taken to hospital with severe burns to 20 percent of her body.

A fireman was also being treated for burns to his face received from a Molotov cocktail thrown earlier in the week.

And they presume to lecture us.

UPDATE So much for the prevailing narrative of sponateous and uncoordinated acts by poor french youths who just want jobs.

PARIS - Worsening urban unrest reached central Paris for the first time early Sunday and youths set ablaze shops, businesses, schools and nearly 1,300 cars from France's Mediterranean resort towns to the German border.

Police also found a gasoline bomb-making factory in a rundown building in Evry, a southern Paris suburb that contained 150 explosives, more than 100 bottles, gallons of fuel and hoods for hiding rioters' faces, Jean-Marie Huet, a senior Justice Ministry official, said Sunday.
"Rioters attacked us with baseball bats," Philippe Jofres, a deputy fire chief from the area told France-2 television. "We were attacked with pickaxes. It was war."

Companion OpiniPundit

By at 06:16 AM | Comments |

November 05, 2005

Breast Group Motion Denied

Following up on a previous post, U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. ruled that there is "no First Amendment right to bare breasts on the grounds of the state Capitol" and refused to restrain California Highway Patrol officers from arresting the 'Breasts Not Bombs' babes if they take their shirts off during a protest on Monday. Sherry Glaser, a member of BNB and its spokeswoman, said the group would have to discuss what they'll do now that they know their arrests are likely.

By at 10:53 PM | Comments |

Yemen Disses Centcom

If we put this article which goes backwards through time into a forward chronology, it seems to say: A US official said to al-Sharq al-Wasat that Yemen is withdrawing its military liason from Centcom's Tampa Command Center which hosts representatives from 62 countries.

The media spokesman at the Yemeni embassy in the US responded that Yemen's two representatives are still on active duty at their posts at Centcom.

Moreover, the officials will naturally return to Sana'a once their terms are over, according to Albasha. “This does not mean in any way that Yemen is withdrawing from the global alliance against terrorism,” he concluded.
The article fails to note if new representatives will be appointed to liason with Centcom in Tampa.

So the Yemeni regime is potentially withdrawing from the command center but not the alliance. Otay. The regime has recently issued repeated statements in support of Iran and Syria. And bi-lateral ties with Iran have increased markedly in the last months. Trade relations with North Korea are good. Salah is the one Arab leader who sided with Saddam in Gulf One resulting in billions in economic losses for the Yemeni economy.

Maybe some one at Centcom asked to take a peek into the Suleiman caves where Yahya al-Houthi told me that General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar used chlorine gas against the Houthis, which if true contravines the chemical weapons convention Yemen ratified in 2000, regardless of all other circumstances. But I'm *sure* the regime would welcome inspections by any parties concerned about the chemical weapons allegations and thus dispel the rumor once and for all. So that cant be it.

Maybe it is an money saving measure after all. I mean after the Yemeni regime closed one embassy (Romania), what else is there to cut but the military liason with the US?

After all Saleh just said in a major speech: “We, in the Republic of Yemen, re-emphasize our insistence and determination to continue exerting efforts in order to consolidate our partnership with the international community to support efforts to confront terrorism and add to the tangible successes that our country had achieved in this regard with the cooperation with our brotherly and friendly nations.”

So naturally in Saleh-land the way to consolidate the partnership is to withdraw the liason.

Jane

By Jane at 12:04 PM | Comments |

November 04, 2005

Al-Qaeda Mustafa Setmariam Nasar Captured in Pakistan.

Nasar is an operative thought to be involved in the planning of the Madrid train bombings.

CNN: The U.S. counter terrorism officials confirmed the man in custody was Nasar, a 47-year-old Syrian who also has Spanish citizenship… …One of the counter terrorism officials cautioned against overstating his importance in the terror network, saying Nasar was a "background" guy with a "number of contacts." "Nasar is best known for his writings," the official said. But the official added, "We're better off that he's captured."

Background info on Nasar.

TKB: Biography: Mustafa Setmariam Nasar, also known as Abu Musab al-Suri and Umar Abd al-Hakim, is a wanted man in both the United States and Spain. Nasar was born in 1959 in Syria where he joined the Muslim Brotherhood. The Brotherhood, a fundamentalist organization, was heavily repressed by the Syrian government, prompting Nasar to write a book that would make him famous in Islamist circles, “The Syrian Experiment.” In the book, written under the pseudonym Abu Musab Suri, Nasar issued a call to action against the ruling Asad regime in Syria. He has also written under the pseudonym Umar Abd al-Hakim.

Hooray Let's Dance the Night Away.

By Howie at 11:00 PM | Comments |

Tammy Imre Gets Six Years for Sex with 8-Year-Old

(Bridgeport, Connecticut) In September, 30-year-old Tammy Imre (pic) pleaded guilty to a charge of risk of injury to a minor in accordance with an agreement which eliminated the need for the 8-year-old victim to have to testify in court.

Today, Imre was sentenced to six years in prison and ten years probation along with being required to register as a sex offender.

From NewsDay.com:

Imre admitted engaging in sexual acts with the boy but said it stopped short of sexual intercourse.

"When this was first in the paper, it was almost a joke, because of the role reversal," prosecutor Cornelius Kelly said. "It conjures up thoughts of, 'Oh, that's a young man's dream.' But as we stand here today, we still don't know what damage this will have on the young boy's self-esteem, his interpersonal relationships. We don't know what damage the young girl suffered."

Imre's daughter, who witnessed some of the acts, is now in foster care, authorities said.

"She has hurt a lot of innocent people, including her own daughter, who not only lost her mother, but her best friend, who was my son," the boy's mother told the judge.

Imre said she was truly sorry.

Is six years enough? Turn it around to be a 30-year-old man mixing it up with an 8-year-old girl. Now, ask if six years is enough. In my opinion, six years is not even close to being enough. Frankly, though, given the customary leniency that courts show toward female pedophiles, I'm surprised she got that much.

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 07:55 PM | Comments |

Second Shift Update.

Yep it’s Friday hope you are all having fun sucking down a cold beer. Howie is jealous cept for I was off all one Indian summer day.


Thanks to Demosophist.
Vinnie.
Mike Pechar.
See-Dubya who also posts here.
Chris Short.
Traderrob.
The Dread Pundit Bluto.
Chad Evans.
Drew.
Richard.
Special new guest poster Jane from Armies of Liberation.

Surf em all post a comment I command you, pretty please.

I did have time to surf over to the bullpen Chad has info in the capture of a female candidate for Parliament in Iraq and her husband.

Pipe the shit right out of your town call the US for more info.

Centcom:Mosul, Iraq - By next spring, Al-Zharaa, a suburb of Mosul, will have a belowground, pipe-enclosed sewer system installed to replace the surface flow system operating today. Workers are digging the first 1.5 kilometers of trenches and pipe is pre-positioned to make this modernization a reality. The replacement system will bring improved sanitation and health conditions to more than 700,000 of Mosul's 1.5 million residents.

US helps Pakistan earthquake survivors.

Centcom: BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan - Two C-130 Hercules flight crews left from here Oct. 29 and air dropped an estimated 50,000 pounds of humanitarian supplies to victims of the Oct. 8 earthquake in Pakistan. Fourteen container delivery system bundles filled with food, water, shelter and supplies descended on people below in need of the items made available.

Hey Filthy what’s for supper?

Not good.

Good.

Confirmation hearings for Judge Alito continue in blogosphere. If he passes muster he will be sent on to the Senate. It appears he will make it.

John Cole says what needs to be said but just is not being said which is something like what I said once about Casey Jones but now I can say see told you so but in a nice way you know.

New space Race? Why does the US need to go to the Moon and Mars? Well cause they will and who gets the best spot is a simple function of who gets there first.

I saw one of these yesterday at 5:45 CST on north horizon Central US good one too tumbling, brighter, dimmer, cool hope you saw it too


By Howie at 07:35 PM | Comments |

'Breasts Not Bombs' Group Seeks Protection

(Sacramento, California) In an effort to translate ogling into support for a political cause, an anti-war group is seeking court protection.

From the SacBee.com:

Mendocino County women who have been baring their breasts at various venues to protest the war in Iraq are in Sacramento federal court seeking an order prohibiting the California Highway Patrol from arresting them during a planned noon demonstration Monday at the Capitol.

The women's group, Breasts Not Bombs, is suing CHP Commissioner Mike Brown and two of his officers over a warning that if the women demonstrate while topless, they will be arrested and charged with indecent exposure and disorderly conduct.

The group claims it also was warned by the CHP that if its members are convicted of indecent exposure they may have to register as sex offenders.

In its motion before the court, the group's San Francisco attorney, Matthew Kumin, stated that, in essence, if they can't take their shirts off, nobody shows up and listens to the women. I personally pay attention to women without shirts.

And, it's probably true that many guys would show up to look but that doesn't mean they'll listen. However, when many people show up, the media follows and it becomes a news story, even though nobody was listening.

U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. will rule on a temporary restraining order preventing the arrest of Breasts Not Bombs members.

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 04:00 PM | Comments |

Into the Hurricane Zone

I will be heading to the hurricane disaster zone again this weekend to help with recovery efforts. Wish me luck.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:08 AM | Comments |

Who Let The Salty Dogs Out?

The Navy has steamed ahead of the pack:











Project Valour-IT, in memory of SFC William V. Ziegenfuss, provides voice-controlled software and laptop computers to wounded Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand and arm injuries or amputations at major military medical centers. Operating laptops by speaking into a microphone, our wounded heroes are able to send and receive messages from friends and loved ones, surf the 'Net, and communicate with buddies still in the field without having to press a key or move a mouse. The experience of CPT Charles "Chuck" Ziegenfuss, a partner in the project who suffered hand wounds while serving in Iraq, illustrates how important this voice-controlled software can be to a wounded servicemember's recovery.

To join a team, or to view the running totals from all four service branch teams, click on this link.

Thanks everyone who's donated! Thanks in advance to those who will!

By Vinnie at 05:36 AM | Comments |

November 03, 2005

California Is Approaching an Important Election

As many people already know California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has been trying to pull California out of its socialist downfall and that is more apparent when you look at the decisions that Californians will be making on 8 Nov 2005.

I'm not even going to try to dabble into the world of California politics so I'm going to ask you to visit the quintessential blog on California politics; California Conservative.

As a matter of fact, there is a must read article and a must participant event at California Conservative that I'd like to share with the readers here:

MUST READ: November 8th: California’s Special Election and Gov. Schwarzenegger’s Initiatives

MUST PARTICIPATE: "Carnival of Arnold" #1

Now set course for a truly enlightening experience.

Originally Posted at Conservative Thinking

By at 05:18 PM | Comments |

R.O.P. Update, Raping for Justice.

You may remember our reader love mail the other day. Part of the quote read as follows.

NO RAPEING OCCURED SINCE THE BEGGINING OF THE CALIPHATE TILL THE END IN 1924 NOT ONE RAPE IN SOCIETY NOWADAYS WOMEN GET RAPED EVRY 2 MINS.

So how is it possible that no rapes occurred under the Caliphate. So is Sharia law so good that it just stops rape from happening or is there some other reason…

NPR :Mukhtar Bibi was raped on the orders of a village council in Pakistan, after her younger brother was accused of making advances toward a woman from a powerful tribe. Mukhtar has since become an outspoken critic of the violence and discrimination in her country, and visits Washington this week.

Ok now see how this works? NPR goes to great trouble to avoid calling these “village Councils” Sharia law but we know. The shame is that when talking about Darfur a few weeks ago NPR got it right. Well they never said it but the subject of the interview did. Come on just tell is like it is. If it’s Sharia and it’s true you are not giving Islam a black eye, Isalm is giving Islam a black eye. In their eyes it's always the woman’s fault men are not held responsible for being cowardly criminal rapists.

By Howie at 03:48 PM | Comments |

2 More Smithereen Commandos Experience Premature Evisceration

Two more brave jihadi babyhunters have met Allah early when the carbomb they were building blew up unexpectedly. Unfortunately, the terrorists accidentally killed an innocent Iraqi in the process of removing their diseased DNA from the gene pool.

From a CENTCOM press release:

BAGHDAD, Iraq – Task Force Baghdad dispatched elements to the scene where two terrorists attempting to build a car bomb were killed when the device prematurely detonated in central Baghdad Nov. 2. Elements dispatched included an explosives ordnance disposal team and a patrol from 6th Squadron, 8th Calvary Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team.

The explosion also killed an Iraqi civilian and set a nearby house on fire. Iraqi firefighters responded to douse the flames.

The EOD team determined the terrorists had been building the vehicle-carried improvised explosive device using a 122 mm projectile, ball bearings and about 80 pounds of homemade explosives.

During a sweep of the house, the 6-8 Cav. Soldiers found another 122 mm projectile, five hand grenades, three A-47 assault rifles, an RPK machine gun and AK-47 magazines.

Also, near Ramadi:
Troops from the 1st Battalion, 1st Brigade, 7th Iraqi Army Division and Coalition forces engaged a group of 15 terrorists armed with AK-47s and RPG launchers when their patrol was attacked. Troops killed several terrorists during the engagement.

A vehicle loaded with a cache of ordnance was discovered in the vicinity of the initial attack. An inventory produced one machine gun, two automatic rifles, two RPG launchers, over 1,200 rounds of various small arms ammunition, 10 propellant sticks, two license plates, three Iraqi Army uniforms and some documents.

I'm reprinting these stories on the off chance that our loyal, unbiased, non-partisan mainstream media completely ignore them.

Also posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto, the number one site on the 'net involving lame wordplay from "The Princess Bride".

By Bluto02:26 PM | Comments |

Paris is Burning

More violence and disorder perpetrated by devout followers of the "religion of peace".

PARIS, Nov. 2 -- Clashes between angry youths and French police spread to at least six Paris suburbs

Tuesday night, with police firing tear gas and rubber-coated bullets at street fighters who lobbed Molotov cocktails and burned cars and trash bins.

With unrest expanding through the northern suburbs of high-rise apartments that house some of France's poorest immigrant populations, senior government officials were debating how to curb the violence during Wednesday morning's weekly cabinet meeting.

The clashes began last Thursday after two African Muslim teenagers were electrocuted to death in the northeastern suburb of Clichy-sous-Bois while trying to evade police. On Sunday, as the street fighting continued, a police tear gas canister landed inside a mosque during Ramadan prayers, further inflaming the impoverished communities.

On Tuesday night, sporadic fighting crossed into the suburbs from Clichy-sous-Bois to Aulnay-sous-Bois where groups of youths threw stones at police in riot gear and torched 15 cars.

France-Info radio reported an estimated 150 fires throughout the area, including 69 vehicles and dozens of garbage bins.

Rather than declare martial law or even set curfews, the ever couragious French choose to aquiesce yet again.

UPDATE: Riots spread to 20 Parisian suburbs
Eighth day of protesting poor housing conditions includes shooting at police

More French impotence amidst an increasingly deteriorating situation.

AP/AULNAY-SOUS-BOIS, France - Rampaging youths shot at police and firefighters Thursday after burning car dealerships and public buses and hurling rocks at commuter trains, as eight days of riots over poor conditions in Paris-area housing projects spread to 20 towns.

Youths ignored an appeal for calm from President Jacques Chirac, whose government worked feverishly to fend off a political crisis amid criticism that it has ignored problems in neighborhoods heavily populated by first- and second-generation North African and Muslim immigrants.

Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin called a string of emergency meetings with Cabinet ministers throughout the day. He told the Senate the government “will not give in” to violence in the troubled suburbs.
Companion OpiniPundit

By at 02:18 PM | Comments |

Couldn't agree more

The Hatemonger's Quarterly nails spastic, frothing homunculus Jim Cramer:

He now hosts his own program, in which he seldom appears on the screen in a position other than that of a hunched-over idiot. To the perturbing delight of a small studio audience, he bellows about mutual funds in a horrific tone. In fact, his vocalisms are so loud and abrasive that you’d think he’s Susan Estrich’s love child. If tuning in to this train wreck is the price one must pay in order to be wealthy, we’ll take penury any day of the week.

Like the crack young staff at HQ, I cut Cramer no slack for being ideologically compatible with me. Whatever goodwill that might have earned him vanished after ten seconds of watching him chew the scenery on "Mad Money". He's like the Carrot Top of investment advice.

I did not realize until reading their post that "Mad Money" is CNBC's top-rated show. Hey, I have some investment advice for those of you with a financial stake in CNBC. Can you guess what it is?

By See-Dubya at 01:40 PM | Comments |

Al Qaeda in Iraq Will Murder Moroccan Hostages

moroccan_hostages_murdered.jpg
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's al Qaeda in Iraq has announced that it will murder two Moroccan embassy workers it kidnapped on October 20th. The two have been identified as a driver, Abderrahim Boualam, and a diplomatic employee, Abdelkrim el-Mouhafidi.

As in past cases where Islamist groups announce that hostages will be murdered, the terrorist justify it on grounds that the hostages are criminals who have violated Islamic law. Before murdering them, a 'trial' is held. AKI:

Following the interrogation of our prisoners, the employees of the Moroccan embassy, we have decided to send their case to the Sharia Committee where they will be able to make a judgement on these kinds of people
Of course, the outcome of the 'trial' was inevetable. The two were found guilty, like so many murdered hostages before them, of 'apostasy'. Apostasy is punishable by death under Islamic law. Salon:
The group said in a statement posted on an Islamist Web forum that its "Islamic court" had judged the two men as "apostates" who were waging a "war on Islam."

"Based on this, the court decided to issue God's verdict upon the apostates and sentenced them to death," it said...

"It has become clear to these governments that they are now in the front line against the mujahedeen in the land of Mesopotamia and that their envoys -- from ambassadors on down -- have become legitimate targets for (the mujahideen's) swords," the new al-Qaida statement said.

The two Moroccans "compounded their disbelief in God and their war on Islam by supporting the government of the Shiite apostates in Baghdad," it said. "May they be a new lesson ... to those who might follow them, those who dare challenge the mujahideen and set foot in the proud land of Mesopotamia."

Al Qaeda in Iraq and the Army of Ansar al Sunnah are the two main groups deemed by the mainstream media as 'insurgents' and called by anti-war activists 'freedom fighters'. Both groups routinely murder civilian hostages.

We will post images and video as soon as they become available.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:16 AM | Comments |

Short Memory, MSNBC?

OK, correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Scooter Libby get indicted for perjury because they didn't have any proof that Valerie Plame was "outed?" At least that was the impression that I got. Because if you could actually prove the charges you were investigating, you would have indicted for them instead of some other thing that you just happen to think you might have found.

Yet, with that in mind, MSNBC runs a story today that not only says that Scooter Libby is guilty *before trial* of things that he hasn't been charged with, but goes on to say that people have come forth to testify that it actually was Karl Rove that leaked Valerie Plame's name to the press. They don't just indicate that this might be or that "rumors have it..." They come right out and say Rove is guilty and his security clearance should be removed. And strongly indicate that the Bush presidency can go nowhere until Rove is fired. Proof, you say?

...a person identified as “Official A” held conversations with reporters about Plame’s identity as an undercover CIA operative, information that was classified. News accounts subsequently confirmed that that official was Rove.

News accounts. I wonder if those news accounts (which I haven't seen or heard) are as trustworthy as this one. I also wonder why, if this is the case and they have such rock-solid evidence of a crime, the special prosecuter hasn't handed down an indictment on Rove? After all, he had plenty of opportunity. And he never once indicated in his press conference after Libby's indictment that he was looking for or at anyone else. As a matter of fact, he seemed to believe that Libby was completly guilty of the whole matter.

And with the cries of outrage coming from MSNBC today, one has to wonder what happened to their voice on April 12, 2005 when the Washington Post reports that:

During a hearing on John R. Bolton's nomination to be ambassador to the United Nations, Bolton and members of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee referred to the analyst as "Mr. Smith." They were discussing one of the officials involved in a dispute over what Democrats said was Bolton's inappropriate treatment of an intelligence analyst who disagreed with him.

But the committee chairman, Richard G. Lugar (R-Ind.), and Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) mentioned a name that had not previously come up in public accounts of the intelligence flap.

"Did Otto Reich share his belief that [the person in question] should be removed from his position? The answer is yes," Kerry said, characterizing one interview. "Did John Bolton share that view?" Kerry asked. Again, he said the answer was yes.

The CIA had repeatedly asked, even in writing, that the identity of this person not be mentioned in these public hearings. That is why everyone else was referring to him as Mr. Smith. But the esteemed Senator from Massachusetts just couldn't seem to help himself as he "outed" this agent. Where was the outcry? Where were the calls for indictment? Wasn't this a crime of terrible proportions? Didn't this, in the words of special prosecuter Fitzgerald "create a terrible danger for all Americans?" And if not, then why is it so much more horrible for Libby? Of course I think we all know the answer to that question.

Update: kimsch of Musing Minds believes that the "sources" quoted above are actually Howard Dean on Hannity & Colmes. Reading through the transcript (posted at the link above), this could certainly be the truth. Some excerpts:

Alan Colmes: What’s your reaction to the nomination of Alito?

Howard Dean: Ah, a couple of reactions. First of all I think it shows the President’s weakness. The extreme right of the party seems to be driving the judicial nominations process and I think that’s unfortunate. Secondly, we still wonder when the President’s going to ask Karl Rove to resign since he’s now been identified by the special prosecutor as the person who leaked the name. So, this all comes, uh, as kind of a, at kind of a difficult time. Uh, I don’t. I think the President’s really using this as a distraction right now to get away from his ethical troubles. (emphasis mine)

One has to wonder where Dean is getting his information. Certainly not from the special prosecuter as he hasn't said anything about Rove. Of course one also has to wonder what that has to do with Alito as well. But no one ever accused the Democrats (especially Dean) of making sense.

Alan Colmes: Is it your belief that the President chose today to make this choice as a distraction from the indictment news?

Howard Dean: Oh sure. But the indictment is not going to go away. The President promised he would fire anyone who leaked. Karl Rove has now been shown to have leaked, even though he wasn’t charged with a crime. This is a big ethical problem for the President. The President gave us his word that he would fire anyone who leaked. So far he hasn’t done that. We’re waiting to see if the President will keep his word.

Alan Colmes: Well, there have been three different standards. First, McClellan said anybody involved in, then he said if anybody leaked, then if anybody committed a crime. Are you calling for the resignation of Karl Rove?

Howard Dean: Absolutely. Karl Rove has no business having a security clearance having now been established as a leaker by the special prosecutor. As I say, he wasn’t charged with a crime, what he did was, not, certainly unethical. And he ought not to have a security clearance and he ought not to be working and being paid for by the taxpayers’ money. (emphasis mine)

Dean then switches horses in midstream and claims that instead of Rove being the leak, it's now Cheney.

Howard Dean: Well, I'm not so sure about that although if there is such a thing, it'll be in the Vice President's office. And I do think there needs to be more investigation in the Vice President's office. One of the things established by the special prosecutor in the indictment is that Vice President Cheney was the source of Scooter Libbity's, Libby's knowledge about who the CIA agent was.

Alan Colmes: Are you calling for a broader investigation of the Vice President?

Howard Dean: Oh, I think there should be. I suspect strongly that, frankly that the prosecutor's already doing that because he, himself identified the Vice President as a source of some of the information that got leaked.

And just to make sure, I checked the special prosecutor's website again today (again, thanks to Musing Minds). No mention of Rove or Cheney. But we all knew that, didn't we? Heck, a full search of Libby's Indictment press release doesn't even mention Rove or Cheney. Even the indictment itself has no mention of either of them.

By at 07:37 AM | Comments |

New Tax Proposed by Democrat

(Jefferson City, Missouri) Missouri State Representative Jeff Roorda (D) was so humiliated by the St. Louis Cardinals' defeat in the Major League Baseball Playoffs that he has decided to take action. Blaming the Cardinals' losses on the umpires, Roorda wants to punish them where it hurts, in their wallets.

"I think if they're not going to pay attention, they ought to at least pay taxes," Roorda said Wednesday."
As a result, Roorda promised to introduce legislation in December to tax umpires and referees.

So, fans shouting the rhetorical 'Kill the ump!' will be replaced with the real-life 'Tax the ump!' And, I'm sure the politicians won't allow deductions for favorable calls.

Or, will they?

By at 07:26 AM | Comments |

November 02, 2005

Ayup, There Goes That Secret

The problem with secrets is that if more than one person knows about it, it's not really a secret:

Nov. 2, 2005 — The CIA has operated a secret prison system where more than 100 terror suspects have been locked up since Sept. 11.

The so-called "black sites" — which were so covert that only a handful of government officials even knew about them until today — operated over the past four years in eight different countries, including Thailand, Afghanistan and several Eastern European states, according to a story first reported today in the Washington Post.

Well, gee, where were they supposed to be held? Okay, don't answer that, but you get my point.

The good news is, if the press is on to this, then these jokers have been moved to other "black sites."

This, however, is hilarious:

What troubles many in the international community is the lack of oversight of interrogation techniques used at these secret lockups.

A recent Amnesty International report tells of two Yemeni prisoners held in a secret U.S. detention facility who say they were kept in an underground cell with Western music piped in 24 hours a day for well over a year, and interrogated daily by U.S. guards who were fully covered "like ninjas."

"The one overriding reason for such a facility is to torture those in detention," said Mark Garlasco of Human Rights Watch. "So that they are away from any prying eyes from the public and from the media."

First off, who gives a flying fart in a potato sack what the "international community" thinks. We're Team America.

And lo! Western music playing 24 hours, the heart, it doth bleed! The torture! And the guards dressed like ninjas? Why, I believe that Amnesty International is blatantly racist against Japanese by claiming that dressing like a ninja is somehow negative.

Keep trying, keep trying. Try all you want, but Abu Ghraib never was that big of a deal to the public at large to begin with, and trying to repeat what small success you had will fail miserably. Of course, we all know the definition of insane: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Only the far out moonbat left, and their MSM syncophants, will ever have sympathy for terrorists.

By Vinnie at 11:44 PM | Comments |

To Hell With the Navy! GO AIR FORCE!

Don't listen to Vinnie, he's used to being underway or something. The way to donate to Project Valour-IT is for the US Air Force team headed up by The Mudville Gazette.

I'm in the US Air Force and I was able to come up with $25.00 so I know you wealthy civilians can give at least ten bucks.






UPDATE: Vinnie thinks he's cool by updating his post and date/time group. Figures the USN backers would resort to dirty, low-blow tricks.

UPDATE: Vinnie and I have come to a mutual agreement regarding the positioning of our posts. Vinnie now understands that the US Air Force flies higher than the US Navy and that regardless of what team you contribute to we appreciate everything you're doing for our brothers and sisters in arms.

By at 11:10 PM | Comments |

Join The Navy And Raise Some Coin

I'm joining the Navy team for Project Valour-IT.

Give early, give often.






Now would be a good time to spend like a drunken sailor.

Oh, what is the Valour-IT fundraising about?

Click here to find out. For more info about the competition, go here.

Go Navy!

UPDATE: An update already?

Yup. Just to let you know I donated, that's me on the top. Eric is my real name, and I donated $200, a hundred for my blog, a hundred on behalf of the Jawa Report.

UPDATE II: I now have a permanent button at Vince Aut Morire, so that I don't have to keep pushing the Air Farce puke down the page!

Oh, and non-bloggers can help raise the money too, by downloading the flyers!

Ok, one last UPDATE: The Vinnies don't ask you to do something without doing it themselves. Da wife threw a couple coins in the basket too, from her own PP account. She's the "Merri from NE" under the "view all."

Really, I don't care what team you donate under, we all have the same goal, and we all get to have a little fun at the expense of the inherent inter-service rivalries.

THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO'S DONATED! THANKS IN ADVANCE TO ANYONE WHO DOES!!!!

By Vinnie at 09:45 PM | Comments |

Sheehan For Carpetbagger

When Newsmax and the Village Voice report nearly identical political stories on the same day it can mean only one thing. Someone's been planting a story. Shenanigans are afoot.

From Newsmax:

Will Cindy Sheehan challenge Hillary Clinton for her Senate seat in 2006?

That's the proposition percolating throughout New York's anti-war left, which has grown increasingly frustrated with Sen. Clinton's refusal to denounce the Bush administration's Iraq policy.

From the Village Voice:
Cindy Sheehan, a/k/a the "peace mom," probably never intended to sound like a candidate, but she did. Sheehan, the activist who became the face of anti-war sentiment after camping outside President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas, last summer, had just mounted the podium at the Brooklyn Peace Fair on October 22. And already she was getting political.
Farbeit from me to imply that candidates can't prosper by counting on the stupidity of New York City voters (Upstate New York, a red state within a blue state, doesn't have a large enough population to have a say in electing Senators or Presidents). They certainly can, as seen by the urbanites' election of Hillary the Carpetbagger and the equally ineffectual Chuck Schumer. So, it's possible that Saint Cindy is planning a serious run for NYC Senator.

More likely, Sheehan is simply a stalking horse for Hillary's re-election to the Senate and anticipated run for the White House. There's obviously no way that Hillary is going to run for President successfully as a liberal. That makes Sheehan's antics just so, so convenient politically, as a way to allow Clinton to pretend to be a moderate Democrat in 2008. The real question here is, what did Hill promise Sheehan and her followers? Support for a cut-and-run policy? A place in the cabinet?

That's not to say that there's anything illegal with clandestine collusion between Clinton and Sheehan. Just an indication that the wife shares the husband's character.

Also posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto, but ask yourself one question before you click on this link. "Am I cool enough to visit Bluto's crib?"

By Bluto06:44 PM | Comments |

The Left Speaks With Forked Tongue.

Ever wonder why the left is always on the negative? Why despite so many successes they scream defeat? Because they think if they just shout the same message long enough and loud enough it will become true. Sadly a good portion of the public does fall prey to this strategy.

Boston Globe registration required : That depends on what you consider ''important." Do you see the war against radical Islam and Ba'athist fascism as the most urgent conflict of our time? Do you believe that replacing tyranny with democratic self-government is ultimately the only antidote to the poison that has made the Middle East so dangerous and violent? If so, you'll have no trouble identifying the most significant development in Iraq last week: the landslide victory of the new Iraqi Constitution.

Also see Rantingprof :

You would think the left would be all happy about a black being elected unless that black man is conservative.

More left twisty stuff from Michelle Malkin.

Malkin : These are words you did not read in the New York Times. They are the words of the late Corporal Jeffrey B. Starr, whose letter to his girlfriend in case of death in Iraq was selectively edited by the Times to convey a bogus sense of "fatalism."

Our Friend Filthy has a great post on the hypocrisy of the left. See this direct link to the post in case you are kind of sensitive. No really it’s good stuff.

Don't get the impression that you arouse my anger. You see, one can only be angry with those he respects(RMN). I've found very little reason to respect much in Washington. But at least the right seems to know what side our side is. If the left thinks the middle of Republican party (that would be me) is going to go with them by default they could not be more wrong. It takes concrete ideas and I could not be more turned off than I am right now.


By Howie at 03:03 PM | Comments |

WTW DICK DICK Van DICK err uh Durbin

You know work sucks. Monday started out OK but I ended up getting calls all night and finished about 4:30 AM Tuesday. Then back on for a Telco Tuesday from 7:30 till 11:30 am. Now that’s what I call a long day. Yesterday afternoon as I was preparing to live blog a touching episode of Little House on the Prairie and take a nap there was news everywhere, Darn. So I was able to find several candidates to trash today and also get a nap. Sorry I was unable to get to the LHOP. The wife and I played Charles and Carolyn instead.

First up is my wretched Senator DICK Durbin whom I’m kind of torn about. I mean I want to see him out but if some guy like Shimkus runs and beats him where will I get material? Dick just does not get that I see right through the politics of his actions this week. Still waiting on a positive idea from you sir. I’m not holding my breath.

"It's a question about whether or not anyone in this administration in any way misused or distorted intelligence," Durbin said. He said senators "owe the American people some straight answers."

OK since time is short I’ll just let Glen Reynolds take care of you for me. Cause with friends like you our enemy is in good shape. How about we win first and squabble later, novel idea.

Reynolds on MSNBC: Well, okay -- but then the investigation needs to go way back before the war, to 1998, when a Democratic President and a Democratic Congress passed the Iraq Liberation Act.

OK so you can hardly nominate DICK this week without a mention of Harry Reid. I’m not from Nevada but I felt better that I was not in the only state with a moonbat Senator. Hey Boys in case you have not noticed there is a war on right now. You can whine all you want about how it started. No votes for anyone who wants to drag up some more mud and hinder progress with cheap political bullshit. In all fairness to Reid he supports my right to flame him here which almost redeems him sorta.

OK let’s add to the list Gov Rob Blagojevich. My fine ILL Republicans have been keeping tabs on him for me. Lets’ see what they have in the newsletter this week below the break.

Here are your White Trash Wednesday bloggers

WILLIAM HOLLAND STILL CAN'T SUPPORT GOV'S CLAIMS... Auditor General William Holland reported additional audit findings in an effort to try to justify how Governor Blagojevich came to the amount he has touted as money saved through his reforms at Central Management Services. There still appears to be a $75 million discrepancy. Other disturbing findings in the audit have been given to Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office for investigastion. (Tribune 10-27-05)

• THE TRUTH BEHIND ALL KIDS. We all know that focusing on children's healthcare is a great way to distract the press from a slew of subpoenas handed down this week for the Blagojevich administration. The Governor's AllKids facts are shaky though. Of the 263,000 children that the he uses as a figure of uninsured children in Illinois, 155,000 of those children are already elgible for Kids Care, another medicaid program geared towards individuals under 18 whose households make less than $40,000 a year. This figure is staggering considering that the only reason that these children are not insured is because their parents have failed to fill out the proper paper work to enroll them in the program. A second disturbing fact behind AllKids is that you do not even need to be a legal resident of the United States. Anyone is elgible for the program. The projected costs are untangible. This legislation is very conceptual. The Illinois Republican Party believes in children, not false more false promises from this administration.

• BOND SALE, NOT USED CAR SALE. Senate Republicans this week called for a Security and Exchange Commission ("SEC") investigation into the possibility that the Blagojevich administration made false financial claims in a $300 million bond sale. In the administration's sales pitch, Blagojevich overstated claims that savings from recently approved pension reforms would save the state $3 billion. However, the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability ("CGFA") said additional costs may add up to over $4.7 billion, which was omitted in the initial presentation to potential investors. Senators Syverson (R- Rockford) and Radogno (R-Lemont) made the complaint stating that they did not have confidence in the numbers that were presented based on the CGFA report. (Pantagraph 10-26-05)

Actually the Kid Care program is good you just have to be really, really poor to get in. Is this a problem yes but Tenn. has a much broader program but the cost has been terrible. Better to have a limited program that you can afford than to go too big and then to scrap the program because you are broke.

October 21st newsletter here that I never got to blog.

PAY FOR IT YOURSELF ROD. Chairman Andy McKenna called on Governor Rod Blagojevich to pay for an additional Central Management Services audit, by accounting firm Deloitte and Touche, out of his campaign. "It's shameful for the Governor to ask taxpayers to fund a duplicative and frivolous audit just so he can put a politically favorable gloss on his questionable claims of cost savings at CMS," McKenna said. The Pantagraph's editorial board echoed McKenna's concerns today, "This smacks of a move to bolster the governor's re-election campaign. That's why his campaign should pay for the consultant, not taxpayers." (Pantagraph 10-21-05)

• THE GOVERNOR'S HEALTH CARE FAILURES. Governor Blagojevich has not quenched AllKids critics' thirst for details as he is failing to get medical organizations behind th e plan. "Legislators don't vote on concepts," the Chicago Tribune editorial board said today in regards to AllKids. The proposed legislation is following the path of the I SaveRx prescription drug venture that has already failed on its one year anniversary. The Southern Illinoisan called for the program to stop this week, "As we stated before this was a bad idea from the start. The state should not be involved in what amounts to a private business function." (The Southern Illinoisan 10-19-05)

• BEAN BRINGS IN THE PAC CASH. Congresswoman Melissa Bean (D-IL 8) ran against former Republican Congressman Phil Crane on the premise that he took too many contributions from Washington special interests. Bean has now earned a place in the top ten of ALL members of congress who receive the most cash from political action committees. Bean ranks number nine on the list, raking in over $150,000 in special interest money. Her latest FEC filing reveals Bean has received more individual donations from New York than she raised in her own district. Her support is clearly coming from outside the district and state, not from the communities whose interests are supposed to be served.

By Howie at 11:34 AM | Comments |

We're From the Government, We're Here to Help

Liberals have put their faith in these Senators. Do you trust them to do what's in your best interests?

By at 11:29 AM | Comments |

Liberty on the Network.

Carnival of Liberty XVIII is up at fpffressminds

Also today the house votes on internet speech.

NY Post: After all, when it comes to the Internet, money hardly translates into influence. Plenty of expensively produced Web sites are flops, while some of the most popular Web sites and blogs cost virtually nothing to run. The real problem, it seems, is that the speech police don't like any speech that they don't get to . . . well, police

Hat Tip: Instapundit.

It seems to me that this should be the number one discussion on the blogs today. But that’s just me.

By Howie at 11:14 AM | Comments |

Wearing Blinders in the Fast Lane

Yeah, that's just what the Democratic Party needed: an isomorphic (one to one) correspondence between the party and the nightmarish conspiracy theories of the Chomsky/Moveon Left about how Bushitlerburton conspired to lead us into war for the sake of all this deucedly cheap oil we're getting. This, while managing to completely ignore the cynical trading of oil for food by some of the most prominent members of the "international establishment," that not only kept Iraqis starving and oppressed, but gave Saddam access to the Sears Build-Your-Own-WMD-Arsenal catalogue, should he like... ever get the itch. (Which we know he wouldn't because Joe Wilson says so... most of the time.)

Now just how is a reasonable person supposed to be unoffended by this obvious, and foolishly self-destructive, clamor for attention? On one side you've got the nomination of a brilliant and qualified conservative to the Supreme Court (who Michael Barone thinks won't be seriously opposed), the launch of a campaign to make ready for the next Influenza Pandemic (a move that Moveon criticized Bush for not having made earlier), a UN investigation of Syrian thuggery exposing a political assassination in Lebanon, and findings that will lead to indictments against prominent members of the "peace movement" who got rich acting as Saddamite conduits. On the other side the Gang That Can't Shoot Straight claims that these are all distractions, and that even though nearly everyone on the planet was certain Saddam was seeking WMD the whole thing was somehow a clever deception arranged by the Bush Administration. Yeah, that's a winner. Keep it up. We really need to vote you guys back into office.

Never saw that one coming...

(Cross-posted by Demosophist to Demosophia)

By Demosophist at 10:24 AM | Comments |

Lesbians Want to Marry Angelina Jolie

tongue_angelina_jolie.jpgFresh on the heels of being named the woman 57% of college girls want to have sex with (story here), Angelina Jolie has another 'good gay' related title: world's most desirable gay-marriage partner. The Sun:

ANGELINA JOLIE is the woman lesbians would most like to marry, according to a new poll by Gaydar Radio.

The bisexual stunner beat fellow actresses Charlize Theron and Jodie Foster to the top spot with 32 per cent of the vote.

You Rethuglikkkans ought to be ashamed of yourselves taking away Angelina Jolie's right to marry whatever hot chick she wants to!! Shame on you Amerikkkan Taliban!!! And we, the people, have a First Amendment right to view any Angelina Jolie 'good-gay' honeymoon videos that might find there way to the internet. Censorship!! Censorship!!

Because at The Jawa Report, we bring you the important stories.......

angelina_jolie_lesbian_kiss.jpg

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 09:10 AM | Comments |

Today in Yemen: Death Threats

Communiqué about the Death Threat Received by Mr. Mohammed Qahtan Head of the Political Bureau of the Yemeni Congregation for Reform (Islah):

The Yemeni Forum for Change (YFC), which is a private, not for profit, and non-partisan organization focusing on issues related to democratic change and human rights in Yemen, is very concerned about the death threat received by Mr. Mohammed Qahtan, Head of the Political Bureau of the Yemeni Congregation for Reform (a.k.a, Islah) which is the biggest opposition party in Yemen. Qahtan, who is one of the most vocal critics of government, has received a two-page letter containing a death threat and delivered to the doorstep of his house in the early morning of Tuesday Nov. 1. 2005.

The YFC strongly condemns this type of terror against a Yemeni politician exercising his rights within constitutional and legal limits, and it calls on domestic and international legal and human rights organizations to denounce such a heinous act.

The death threat to Mr. Qahtan comes at a time in which the Yemeni government has escalated its harassment, intimidation, and in some instances beatings of Yemeni journalists, opposition and independent politicians. The government harassment has extended to include the head of the YFC, Dr. Abdullah Al-faqih, whose countryside relatives in Ibb governorate have been subjected at beginning of the month of Ramadan to harassing calls from officers in the Political Security Organization (PSO) which is an extra constitutional institution answerable only to president Saleh. This occurred shortly after the YFC held a symposium to discuss political reforms in Yemen.

In light of current circumstances in Yemen and as a response to deteriorating political and economic conditions, the YFC calls on intellectuals, journalists, and social figures inside and outside Yemen to increase pressure on the Yemeni government to do the following:
1. Protect its citizens and hold those responsible for these terrorizing acts accountable in front of the law; failing to do so will only implicate government officials in the conspiracy to terrorize journalists and activists.
2. Cease all types of harassment, intimidation, and terrorizing acts directed against opposition figures, journalists and activists.
3. Positively and unconditionally respond to calls for national dialogue that includes all relevant political forces and address immediate political and economic challenges facing the country.
4. Work with other forces in society to build a democratic culture which enables Yemenis to peacefully work their political differences.
5. Take urgent steps to combat corruption which has become the number one obstacle to political and economic development in Yemen.

Sana'a, Republic of Yemen. November 2, 2005
For queries in Arabic, please call 967-711000226
For queries in English, please call 967-711909057

By Jane at 06:32 AM | Comments |

November 01, 2005

Hell Freezes Over: 50 Cent Defends Bush

From ContactMusic.com via The Drudge Report:

The IN DA CLUB star believes human intervention could not have prevented the effects of the hurricane, which killed over a thousand people in the US gulf states in August (05), and sees no point in reprimanding the President for something which was beyond his control.

He says, "The New Orleans disaster was meant to happen. It was an act of God.

"I think people responded to it the best way they can.

"What KANYE WEST was saying, I don't know where that came from."

A rap star speaking up for a Republican President? Is this a sign of the Apocalypse?

I still say Canadian Lorne Greene (Bonanza's Ben Cartwright) started rap with his release of "Ringo" (the number 21 hit of 1964). And Canada should be held to account for this.

Also posted at The Dread Pundit Bluto.

By Bluto07:45 PM | Comments |

Russian Prez Putin Won't Run for Third Term

(Moscow) I guess it's time to try and figure out which ex-communist will be allowed to take President Putin's place.

From The Moscow Times:

President Vladimir Putin said Monday that he would not seek a third term in 2008, but vowed not to allow "destabilization" in Russia following the vote, leaving the door open for drastic action in the event of a crisis.

In an interview with Dutch media on the eve of a visit to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, Putin reiterated that he opposed changing the Constitution to prolong his time in power -- a possibility that has been widely discussed because of his popularity and control of the parliament.

But Putin said that the 2008 presidential election would be a "serious, difficult test for Russia" and stressed that full power and responsibility for the fate of the country would remain in his hands until the new president has been sworn in.

It seems to me that he is keeping a trump card. If Putin doesn't like the way Russia is being run, he takes "drastic action" to straighten things out. This is probably because of the fact that Russia has little experience with the peaceful transfer of power. Historically, someone customarily had to die or have been murdered.

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 01:47 PM | Comments |

And in the "God has a sense of irony" category...

Puerto Princesa, Nov. 1 (UPI) — Environmental group Greenpeace was fined for damaging the Tubbataha Reef Marine Park near Palawan Island in the Philippines when its ship hit the coral reef.
Greenpeace blamed outdated maps from the Philippine government that indicated the 400-mile World Heritage coral reef site was more than a mile away when its flagship Rainbow Warrior II hit it, the BBC reported.

You'd think that if they were so concerned about the environement, they might actually take the time to make sure their charts are updated. You know, when you get that map that says "circa 1940" on it, it's probably not quite as accurate as when it was made. But I suppose that I'm actually expecting Greenpeacers to be able to read. That may be holding the standards too high.

By at 10:43 AM | Comments |

New Ways to Screw You

President Bush's tax panel has released new proposals for changes to the tax code. So far, I'm not seeing anything to get excited about. Of course they've found new ways to screw the wealthy, because we all know that it's their "duty" to give everything they worked to earn back to the people who like to sit around, watch soaps and spit out babies.

Some of the proposed changes would include:

Eliminate the alternative minimum tax
The AMT is a parallel tax system originally intended to ensure the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes by eliminating many of the deductions and credits they get under the regular income tax system.

But because the income-exemption levels have never been indexed to inflation, by 2010 the AMT threatens to catch more than 30 million taxpayers, mostly from middle-income households. The estimated cost of repealing the AMT is $1.3 trillion over 10 years.

The panel was instructed to come up with proposals that are revenue-neutral, meaning they would have to produce the same revenue as expected under the current system. As a result, the panel had to take a hard look at the tax breaks offered under the current system to see where they could make up for that lost revenue, while at the same time ensuring a new tax code was fairer and more growth oriented than the current one.

So, basically, they are simply moving this tax upward in the pay scale. So once again, if you make more, they're going to take more away.

Alter homeowners' tax breaks
The panel recommended lowering the mortgage interest cap, which is the amount of a loan on which home owners would receive a tax break for interest paid, from $1 million to the average regional housing price in the range of $227,000 to $412.000.

The deduction would be converted to a credit equal to 15 percent of interest paid on mortgages up to the interest cap. A credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction of the taxes you owe, while a deduction only reduces your taxable income by a percentage equal to your top tax rate.

Generally speaking, the higher your mortgage loan and the higher your tax bracket, the more likely it is that you'll see less of a tax break than you would under the current system.

And once again a Socialist's dream. Tax you on your mortgage based on how much you pay and how much you make.

Reduce the marriage penalty
All tax brackets, family credits and taxation of Social Security benefits for couples would be double those of individuals. Under the current system, some married couples filing jointly end up paying more in taxes than single taxpayers with the same income because of the way various deductions, creidts and tax brackets are structured.

Now this I can get behind. But why stop there? Why not eliminate the marriage penalty altogether? If it's wrong, it's wrong. It's not just a little bit wrong, in a certain bracket.

Reduce tax breaks on employer-provided health insurance
When you work for a company, your employer typically foots a large portion of your health-insurance premiums. That money, which is not reported on your W2, is tax-free to you.

The panel recommended capping the amount of tax-free money that may be used to pay for health insurance to $5,000 for single coverage or $11,500 for family coverage.

Now hold on just a minute there, hoss. Maybe I'm misunderstanding that, but are you talking about taxing me for money that my employer pays for my health care? Or are you just talking about taxing my employer for the good thing that he's trying to do for me and my family? Either way it's a crappy deal. Kentucky politicians have already managed to make health insurance in Kentucky so high and so complicated that nearly no one will carry it. If you now start taxing the money we use to buy it, you're going to totally screw us out of health care. Small companies like the one I work for will simply not be able to afford to pay it anymore, so I'll end up losing what little I've got. How exactly again does that qualify as taking care of your constituitients? Oh, I get it now. When you do this, I'll go broke trying to pay for healthcare, and I'll be forced out of my job because my employer is broke too. Then I can take advantage of your wonderful welfare system that you've set up with the money you just stole from me and my employer! Oh wow! I can't wait!

Repeal the federal deduction of the state and local tax deductions
Under the proposals, taxpayers would no longer be allowed to deduct the state and local taxes they pay on wage income, investment income, and property.

Former Senator John Breaux of Louisiana, who is the panel's vice chair, on CNBC Tuesday morning explained part of the panel's reasoning this way: "If people in California want to pay extra taxes to have their trash picked up, people in Texas shouldn't have to subsidize it."

That's right, just because your state and local governments take your money doesn't mean you don't still owe it to the federal government. After all, they've got to have their piece of the pie too.

Reduce the number of tax brackets
Under the panel's first proposal, which is a streamlined version of the current income tax, the number of tax brackets would be reduced from 6 to 4. They would be: 15%, 25%, 30% and 33%.

Under their second proposal, which combines the income tax with a progressive consumption tax, there would be only three tax brackets: 15%, 25% and 30%.

In the long run, this would probably end up screwing me. But I'd certainly like to see more on this than the proposed percentages that they want to steal from me. Where are they planning on dividing these brackets? Will most of America fall into that 25% bracket? If that's the case, then my taxes are going to go up quite a bit.

So basically, what I'm reading is that you can kiss those nice little tax breaks that Bush gave you last term goodbye. Then you can prepare yourself to bend over and take it. Because everything I'm seeing here looks like a bunch of liberal appeasement programs planned to give the goverment plenty of pork to work with.

When are the American people going to say that we've been screwed enough? When are we going to realize that the current welfare system is a sham? When are we going to demand that our "leaders" get their spending under control and stop stealing our hard earned money? I say the time is now. If we don't get this situation under control immediately, than it is going to get much worse much faster. Conservatives were able to rally together and stop the nomination of Harriet Miers, why can't we rally together and start demanding that our elected officials begin acting like the conservatives they ran as? These proposals haven't been passed into law yet. It's not to late to change them. Write your congressman. Start lobbying. Take control.

Quotes in this article courtesy CNN

By at 10:30 AM | Comments |

Another Day in Yemen

In Yemen, censorship is expensive, officials complain, so its time to raise internet costs by 50% to cover the costs of blocking websites.

150 textile workers striking for payment of back wages are surrounded by 200 police who then brutally beat the journalists.

In a positive development, the government *promised* to stop buying weapons from brokers and selling the surplus to individuals.

Political Assassination, while a big deal in Lebanon, is commonplace in Yemen and doesn't warrant a broad investigation, even if the regime is implicated in the murder of a major political opposition figure for his secular views.

Unfortunately the lack of any substantial democratic progress has disqualified Yemen from receiving any funds from the Millennium Challenge Account, and the World Bank is cutting funding by 34% due to corruption, lack of transparency and good governance, but crime and corruption are much more lucrative for the elite, so no biggie.

Jane

By Jane at 10:03 AM | Comments |

U.S. Military Bases in Romania

(Bucharest, Romania) From the standpoint of geopolitical strategy, this is an important reshuffling of players in the region.

From Xinhua:

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to visit Romania by the end of the year to sign an agreement setting up US military bases in Romania, Romanian Foreign Minister Razvan Ungureanu said on Monday.

The military deals are close to be completed, Romania's Mediafax quoted Ungureanu as saying.

The foreign minister made the remarks after meeting with his US counterpart Rice in New York.

Romanian President Traian Basescu told visiting US National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley on Oct. 23 that possible locations for the bases might be Babadag, close to the Danube delta, Constanta, on the Black sea, and Fetesti, 200 km east of Bucharest.

If a Black Sea naval base is included, which seems to be the case, the U.S. will be capable of easily projecting regional influence. Any prudent student of international affairs would deem the expansion of U.S. influence in eastern Europe and western Asia a major development.

Companion at Interested-Participant.

By at 03:51 AM | Comments |