Saturday, December 09, 2006

"But interest in Chthulu thesis was received by the discovery of another set of Terran characters, whose content is eerily reminiscent of the maverick Professor's hypothesis and of the same linguistic family as the Real Player clip. The characters, written on a large sheet of colored paper, is of unknown authorship. Loosely translated into Universal Galactic it contains this warning: "a great civilization is not conquered from without...until it has been destroyed from within." Coincidence? Maybe."

Uh, no...

"Uh, no. AQ is overwhelmingly Sunni, actually more Wahhabi Sunni than anything else. Osama bin Laden and his cohorts don't cotton to Shi'ites; they consider them heretics, as Stein points out. Nor was Reyes' ignorance limited to the composition of al-Qaeda. When Stein asked him about Hezbollah -- which hasn't exactly flown under the radar this year -- he couldn't identify the Iranian proxy terrorists as predominantly Shi'ite.

Has Reyes actually attended intel committee hearings over the last few years? Has he read newspapers? People talk about George Bush being out of touch, but this should send genuine fear into the American electorate. How, Stein asks, can Reyes exercise effective oversight on American intelligence when he has so little understanding of our enemies and of the chief battlegrounds in the war on terror?

The Democrats should seriously reconsider Harman's expulsion. With the nation at war, we need people of expertise in these positions. It has become obvious that Pelosi instead considers these assignments only for their patronage value."

Friday, December 08, 2006

"So the wise men met and decided that the price of a Normandy invasion was just too steep. According to leaked War Department memos, planners estimate deaths on D-Day alone could reach 10,000. In a lengthy, bipartisan recommendation the commission recommended America unilaterally meet with representatives of Berlin, Rome and Tokyo to develop a reasonable exit strategy. It would probably involve giving some concessions. England was a diminishing power in the world and could be abandoned. Other Allies were of little use to America’s long range interests.

There was widespread media opinion that President Roosevelt had made a mess of the War and refused—after repeated requests by key members of the press--to admit it publicly. Those in Congress who had voted in favor of the War after Pearl Harbor were changing their minds now that they suspected White House duplicity in the attack and the original rationale for the War.

A number of leading newspapers have reluctantly come to the conclusion that the War is lost and while sympathetic to the plight of millions enslaved people under Axis domination—some being exterminated—that it was just not in America’s best interests to continue to fight and die. After all, apart from several sub sightings off the Atlantic coast and a few rumors of Japanese ships near the pacific coast, no further attacks on the American mainland had happened since Pearl Harbor.

The commission’s findings and recommendations will be discussed throughout Washington in the days ahead."

Pearl Harbor, Intelligence and Offense

"As the MAGIC example dramatically demonstrates, there are serious limits to even the best intelligence. A reasonably smart enemy will deliberately send out contradictory signals and "noise" before any attack. This point applies with special force to modern terrorists, who have a large number of potential targets to choose from. Sooner or later, they will catch us by surprise again.

For these reasons, among others, we cannot win with a purely or even primariy defensive orientation. Ultimately, we have to engage in offensive operations, in order to destroy the enemy before they are able to implement their own attack plans, and so we ourselves cna claim the advantages of surprise and confused intelligence. Offensive strategies certainly have their own risks, and are not a panacea. However, even more than 9/11, Pearl Harbor demonstrates that an exclusively defensive orientation is a guarantee that our enemies will take us by surprise sooner or later - with potentially devastating results."

LGF has C&F. And they're rockin today...

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

"There is a deep principle at work here, contradicting what is embraced as “diplomacy” today. It is that reasonable ideas can invariably be communicated in clear language. For the reasonable assertion has nothing to hide. “Doublespeak”, as Orwell defined, is the substance within which ideas are hidden, that would be rejected if they were stated plainly. “Diplomatic doublespeak” goes a step further. It is the language in which such dubious ideas are absorbed and accepted; by which Western diplomats seek to fool themselves.

Jacques Chirac, the President of France, has recently said a very clear thing: that the Syrian regime, currently re-arming Hezbollah in Lebanon (under the noses of French “peacekeepers”), is beyond talking with. That he persists in talking with exaggerated civility to the regime in Tehran, belies his sincerity. But he is right in making a subtle point against the dreamworld proposals now emerging from the Baker-Hamilton “Iraq Study Group” -- the ludicrous idea that America could win the cooperation of Syria and Iran, in extracting herself from Middle Eastern commitments."
"When composing a list of neighboring countries that really have an interest in avoiding a chaotic Iraq, one should not worry about consuming too much ink."
"Perhaps the US could save time and give Amadinehjad a nuclear bomb and the coordinates to hit the White House after destroying Tel Aviv."
"The entire report exists in some kind of striped-pants-set fantasy world where all actors are rational and behave only in good faith. As a consequence, the report repeatedly offers idiotic banalities like, “No country in the region wants a chaotic Iraq,” in spite of previously acknowledging that one of Iraq’s most murderous militias, the Badr brigade, is a client of Iran.

Aaah, Iran. For a real indication of this report’s terminal lack of seriousness, check out the Group’s blithe ignorance regarding Iran’s malevolent intentions. “It is clear to the Iraq Study Group members that all of Iraq’s neighbors are anxious about the situation in Iraq,” opines the commission. “They favor a unified Iraq that is strong enough to maintain its territorial integrity, but not so powerful as to threaten its neighbors.”

Gosh, when did Iran become so altruistic and so unconcerned with its own interests? Last I heard, the mad Mullahs and their certifiable front-man were hell-bent on establishing a regional caliphate to be quickly followed by global domination. And yet now the Baker Commission informs us that Iran really has Iraq’s best interests at heart. Phew! What a relief."
"We cannot appease our enemies and we cannot continue to cut and run when the going gets tough. As it stands in the world right now our enemies view America as a country full of queasy people who are inclined to cut and run when things take a turn for the worse. Just as the Tet Offensive was the victory that led to our failure in Vietnam our victories in Iraq now are leading to our failure in the Middle East. How many more times must we fight to fail? I feel like all of my efforts (30 months of deployment time) and the efforts of all my brothers in arms are all for naught. I thought old people were supposed to be more patient than a 24 year old but apparently I have more patience for our victory to unfold in Iraq than 99.9 percent of Americans. Iraq isn’t fast food-you can’t have what you want and have it now. To completely change a country for the first time in it’s entire history takes time, and when I say time I don’t mean 4 years.

Talking doesn’t solve anything with a crazed people, bullets do and we need to be given a chance to work our military magic. Like I told a reporter buddy of mine: War sucks but a world run by Islamofacists sucks more."
"The Iraq Support Group, "part of the New Diplomatic Offensive", apparently excludes Jews. The report demands that we stop blindly supporting Israel and that we press them for concession after concession, all without any demand for reciprocity, but they will not have a seat at the regional conference on Iraq. That's extraordinary, especially considering that Baker, Hamilton, and Company insist that "all key issues in the Middle East—the Arab-Israeli conflict, Iraq, Iran, the need for political and economic reforms, and extremism and terrorism—are inextricably linked." If they're inextricably linked, then why isn't Israel invited?

Once again, we have to recall that James Baker has never been Israel's friend. Here he and the ISG make that very clear. The US will ask Israel to marginalize itself in order to enable Syria and Iran to dominate a regional conference comprised mainly of Israel's enemies that will supposedly deal with their territorial integrity. If that sounds a lot like Mussolini's efforts to call a regional conference together at Munich in 1938, it's not a coincidence."

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

"Some have speculated that the obvious nature of a polonium poisoning pointed away from Putin. Such a blatant use of a closely controlled substance would immediately implicate the Russian government, the argument goes, and therefore would never have been used by real FSB agents. However, the British say that the assassination was meant to send a clear message to Putin's critics and anyone tempted to offer information to Western nations about the activities of the Putin regime.

The Russians are not happy about the direction of the investigation. They're threatening the UK by suggesting that the probe has damaged diplomatic relations. The British ought to point out that conducting assassinations in their country damages diplomatic relations as well."
"When Muslims fully recognize the historical fact of the Holocaust and reject anti-Semitism, then we can take note of their ideas on how to staff Holocaust memorial panels."
"Is it just me, or does it seem like radical Islamists deeply fear women and their sexuality? Their entire worldview appears focused on the oppression of females -- burying them under yards of cloth, denying them any freedom of movement, and avoiding even their singing voices in public. [ No, it's not just you. -ed. ] After all of Ahmadinejad's ludicrous diplomacy and aggressive posturing, having him lose power because of a sporting event's opening ceremonies is nothing short of surrealistic.

Ahmadinejad will certainly atone for his sins shortly. All it will take is another conference on how beautiful the world will be once Iran removes Israel and the United States from it. The radicals will forgive all in their xenophobic ecstasy."
"It says a lot that Yahoo is more biased and less honest than AP."
"“Finally,” he added, “Shiite Muslim cleric Moktada al-Sadr, whose Mahdi Army numbers in the tens of thousands, will be captured, beheaded and buried with 72 virgin hogs at a pig farm in Israel. The video will be posted at” "
"Ray Robison has been examining the seeming ties between the Associated Press and Al Jazeera, and here’s another case in which the AP deliberately seeks to interview US enemies—not just “critics of our policies,” but enemies who are engaged in killing US troops as well as fellow Muslims—with the probable aid of Al Jazeera: Associated Press gives America’s enemies a clear channel."
"This whole thing is too weird."
"The President has always been a mystery on this, because there's always been a radical disconnect between what the President says in his speeches, and what the American government then does, or doesn't do. I mean, he's been talking for years about the importance of supporting the Iranian people in their legitimate desire to be free, but we haven't done anything. We haven't supported them at all."
"President Carter's book on the Middle East, a title too inflammatory to even print, is not based on unvarnished analyses; it is replete with factual errors, copied materials not cited, superficialities, glaring omissions, and simply invented segments. Aside from the one-sided nature of the book, meant to provoke, there are recollections cited from meetings where I was the third person in the room, and my notes of those meetings show little similarity to points claimed in the book. Being a former President does not give one a unique privilege to invent information or to unpack it with cuts, deftly slanted to provide a particular outlook."

WTF Continued

"Pelosi stripped Harman of the chair that she gave Reyes primarily because of her support of the war in Iraq and a lack of partisan animus on Harman's part. While Reyes promised to vigorously pursue the issues of the warrantless NSA surveillance of international calls and other counterterrorism efforts by the Bush administration, clearly the Democrats expected someone less inclined to keep troops in Iraq, let alone add to the contingent. Even Harman has not gone on record in support of an expansion of troop levels.

So why did she replace Harman? It seems obvious that the decision had much more to do with personal issues than with policy. Democrats may want to rethink her Speakership in light of the series of strange decisions she has made in the wake of their victory. The rule of personal whim has just about destroyed their momentum and may have set up the House caucus for a devastating split at the moment of their greatest unity in a generation." [ And don't forget to read this one either. -ed. ]
"The real comparison is not between what people are paid in Third World countries compared to what people are paid in the United States. The comparison that affects outcomes is what Third World people are paid by multinational corporations compared to what they can earn otherwise. By and large, multinational corporations pay about double the local pay in Third World countries.

Third World workers line up for these jobs and even bribe insiders to get them such jobs. If economically illiterate Hollywood busybodies and other mindless crusaders succeed in establishing more costly pay scales without regard to productivity, that will undoubtedly lead to fewer jobs, just as similar policies do in other countries.

What the Third World needs are more multinational corporations, not less."
"Churchill once said, "history will be kind to me because I intend to write it". He was speaking for himself. As for the rest of us, the Left which will write our -- and Corporal Smith's -- epitaph.

One of the saddest of today's news stories comes from the New York Times. It describes the belated efforts of the Israeli defense force to shop around satellite imagery, photos and intelligence reports to prove that Hezbollah used Lebanese neighborhoods as human shields."

Enlightenment? What Enlightenment?

"What would a beleaguered Socrates, a Galileo, a Descartes, or Locke believe, for example, of the moral paralysis in Europe? Was all their bold and courageous thinking--won at such a great personal cost--to allow their successors a cheap surrender to religious fanaticism and the megaphones of state-sponsored fascism?

Just imagine in our present year, 2006: plan an opera in today's Germany, and then shut it down. Again, this surrender was not done last month by the Nazis, the Communists, or kings, but by the producers themselves in simple fear of Islamic fanatics who objected to purported bad taste. Or write a novel deemed unflattering to the Prophet Mohammed. That is what did Salman Rushdie did, and for his daring, he faced years of solitude, ostracism, and death threats--and in the heart of Europe no less. Or compose a documentary film, as did the often obnoxious Theo Van Gogh, and you may well have your throat cut in "liberal" Holland. Or better yet, sketch a simple cartoon in postmodern Denmark of legendary easy tolerance, and then go into hiding to save yourself from the gruesome fate of a Van Gogh. Or quote an ancient treatise, as did Pope Benedict, and then learn that all of Christendom may come under assault, and even the magnificent stones of the Vatican may offer no refuge--although their costumed Swiss Guard would prove a better bulwark than the European police. Or write a book critical of Islam, and then go into hiding in fear of your life, as did French philosophy teacher Robert Redeker.

And we need not only speak of threats to free speech, but also the tangible rewards from a terrified West to the agents of such repression. Note the recent honorary degree given to former Iranian President, Mohammad Khatami, whose regime has killed and silenced so many, and who himself is under investigation by the Argentine government for his role in sponsoring Hezbollah killers to murder dozens of Jewish innocents in Buenos Aires."
"Virtual Fence = Virtual Corruption? Speaker Pelosi's fallback choice to head the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Silvestre Reyes, voted against building the 700 mile border fence. He prefers a system of video surveillance cameras, apparently. And gee, it seems that his daughter works for a firm that won a government contract to provide such surveillance services! What's more, according to WaPo's John Mintz (who broke the story) the firm did a really bad job." [ RTWT. WTF-over. ]

Kick The Can - Part 83896

"Putin, like Hitler and Chavez and Mussilini and a whole laundry-list of other loud mouth low-rent thugs, have gaged the temperment of the world they live in with stunning accuracy. They know full well that the adversaries they see are obsessed with "stability and peace" and that they will sell their souls for it.

Russia doesn't need to worry about the quality of diplomatic relations when the West is in full "conflict avoidance" mode. We'll take care of that little problem just fine!"

Monday, December 04, 2006

Political Nuts In A Nutshell Updated

"I'm genuinely afraid that the ruling cohort, and those who enable it by participating in the political process, have so much lost touch with the realities that we face that they are incapable of looking at an issue like Iraq, or 9/11, or the economic straits we have spent and borrowed ourselves into as a nation except as a foothold in climbing over the person in front of them. I imagine a small table of gentlemen and -women, playing whist on a train as it heads out over a broken bridge. The game, of course maters more than anything, and the external events - they're just an effort to distract they players from their hands." [ Sadly, Armed Liberal's summary has stood the test of time all too well. I hope my latest political summary -- with equal offense to all -- doesn't stand up as well but I fear it will: Inane venality versus witless perfidy mediated by cynical narcissism. -ed. ]
"But we have never looked as chestless as we have during the past three years at war. We literally fear antagonizing our enemies in Iran and Syria. Domestically, the burden of deaths equal to 5% of those suffered in Vietnam has been repeatedly cited as evidence that we must withdraw from the greatest challenge of our era. For all his “bring it on” posturing, has there ever been a more chestless national figure than John Kerry? (Okay, Jimmy Carter, but you catch my drift.) If America is to prevail in this generational challenge, we better find our men with chests in a hurry."
"These people really do seem to think they’re a priestly class, immune to criticism, existing on some rarefied plane from which they hand down truth to the ungrateful masses."
"One of the greatest pieces of disinformation that the press ever sold the public was this notion that the Sunni insurgency was on the verge of defeating American forces in Iraq. This idea has made it difficult for much of the public to understand the dynamic of the fight and it represents a failure of narrative which is only latterly being corrected."
"The new regime takes U.S. embassy personnel as hostages. Now it is the U.S. president who is demoralized and lacking will. Eventually, he orders an absurd rescue plan that fails utterly, bringing even further humiliation on our country. Almost 30 years later, the Islamic fanatics remain in control. They sponsor terrorists and deadly anti-western militias throughout the Middle East. They apparently are close to developing nuclear weapons."

Which Part Of This Don't Some Of You Understand Again?

"The gunmen came at night to drag Mohammed Halim away from his home, in
front of his crying children and his wife begging for mercy.

The 46-year-old schoolteacher tried to reassure his family that he
would return safely. But his life was over, he was part-disembowelled and then
torn apart with his arms and legs tied to motorbikes, the remains put on display
as a warning to others against defying Taliban orders to stop educating

These people are evil incarnate. It is disturbing that so many Americans have apparently lost interest in fighting them."

Sunday, December 03, 2006

"The way to improve security in the near term is to increase the only force in the country that is even-handed and competent - America's. It has been obvious for a long time that Iraq needs more U.S. forces, but Bush has never ordered it, because he has been determined to defer to his generals no matter what. Unfortunately, the best generals can be wrong.

Bush simply has failed to run his war. Historian Eliot Cohen describes how, in contrast, the best American wartime president conducted himself: ''Lincoln had not merely to select his generals, but to educate, train and guide them. To this end he believed that he had to master the details of war, from the technology to the organization and movement of armies, if only to enable himself to make informed judgments about general officers.''

Bush has taken the opposite approach and - for all his swagger and protectiveness of executive prerogatives - is becoming a disturbing study in lassitude in the executive branch

Holocaust Denial: Where The Problem Lies

"NOP also found a tendency for British Muslims to believe some, well, strange things. 45% thought that 9/11 was a conspiracy between the USA and Israel. 36% thought that Princess Diana was murdered to stop her marrying a Muslim. More seriously, only 29% thought that the holocaust occured, 2% denied it happened entirely, 17% think it was exaggerated (which is the stance proposed by most of today’s holocaust deniers), 24% said they had “no opinion” and 23% didn’t know what the holocaust was." [ Yes, that's right: ONLY 29% were certain that the holocaust occurred. THAT WOULD BE 19% THAT BELIEVED IT DIDN'T AND SOME 47% SUFFERING FROM EDUCATIONAL FAILURE AT BARE MINIMUM. Now there's a community that I would flee like a banshee if I only had a single neuron in my head. And note the 45% who believe that 9/11 was a BusHitler conspiracy. It turns out that there was recent poll in the U.S. that said only slightly fewer here believed it: 36%. And as you might expect, the breakdown on this was that 51% of Dems and -- almost as frightening in its own way -- 20% of elephants did! Think about that a little more: British Muslims are wacko about 9/11 and our Dems have an honest contest in progress to out-do them! Our political parties really are big tents filled with scary folks. Oh... And our vaunted independents came down at 33% so that's no refuge either... So forget that last "comforting" post about holocause denial and sweet dreams... -ed. ]

Holocaust Denial: The Lunatic Touchstone

"A January 1994 Gallup Poll found that a much lower percentage, approximately 4 percent, of those it surveyed "have real doubts about the Holocaust; the others (19 percent) are just insecure about their historical knowledge or won't believe anything they have not experienced themselves," says Frank Newport, Editor of the Gallup Poll." [ This was a U.S. poll. The 4% is frankly disturbingly high but doesn't seem way off base given the number of people running around that I would categorize in my experience as openly nutty. And I'm afraid that the 19% is a sad commentary on the state of our educational system (though, again, probably not completely off base given the number of people without GEDs or that skate through anything resembling an attempt at education. But at least I can comfortably pull two things out of this: 1) I can sleep at night with this. 2) Holocaust denial remains a touchstone for people that can safely be assumed to be lunatics. If you're going to believe in it, then I'm not rational for assessing YOU as rational. -ed. ]
"When the AP was forced to acknowledge this situation, it did so in a story about a new Interior Ministry policy regarding false reports. The AP buried the fact that its own false report prompted this new policy. ...

The AP, once a just-the-facts news delivery service, has lost its rudder. It has become a partisan, anti-American news agency that seeks to undercut a wartime president and American soldiers in the field. It is providing fraudulent, shoddy goods. It doesn’t even recognize it has a problem." [ Exactly. And who will watch the fourth estate if not us? The internet can end their monopoly and needs to end the reign of these perfidious fascifists forthwith. And that's my most charitable view. Oh. And now you know why I could never be elected to a political office as long as they rule anyway... ]
"“What has essentially happened since 9/11 has been that Bush has repeated the same themes, and framed those themes the same whenever discussing the War on Terror,” said Kuypers, who specializes in political communication and rhetoric. “Immediately following 9/11, the mainstream news media (represented by CBS, ABC, NBC, USA Today, New York Times, and Washington Post) did echo Bush, but within eight weeks it began to intentionally ignore certain information the president was sharing, and instead reframed the president’s themes or intentionally introduced new material to shift the focus.”

This goes beyond reporting alternate points of view. “In short,” Kupyers explained, “if someone were relying only on the mainstream media for information, they would have no idea what the president actually said. It was as if the press were reporting on a different speech.”" [ And reported it on page 37 whenever they thought they could get away with it of course... -ed. ]