Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Al Qaeda In Iraq? What?

An update on Iraq operations. /Recruiting numbers for June are in. /Misawa Air Base solicits donations of Beef Jerky.
Doesn't fit the MSM surrender meme. So down the MSMemory Hole it goes...

Making It So

Perhaps the greatest irony of the political debate over Iraq is that many of Bush's critics, who accused his administration of going blindly to war without considering what would happen once Hussein's regime was toppled, now blindly support a policy of withdrawing from Iraq without considering what might follow.

In this respect, the debate over Iraq is beginning to look a lot like the debate about the Vietnam War in the 1960s and '70s. Then, too, the argument in the United States focused primarily on whether U.S. forces should pull out. But many who supported that withdrawal in the name of human rights did not foresee the calamity that followed, which included genocide in Cambodia, tens of thousands slaughtered in Vietnam by the North Vietnamese and the tragedy of hundreds of thousands of "boat people."

Good heavens. Maybe the critics have been right all along. Iraq really is another Vietnam, but only because the Democrats in America
are going to make it so.

Pictures Like These

Why doesn't this CNN reporter appreciate any of this? And why don't mainstream media reporters turn on al Qaeda with the same vehemence with which they have turned on George Bush? All they'd need to do is report the truth (i.e., al Qaeda -- our enemy -- is trying to defeat America by slaughtering innocent men, women and children in an effort to incite civil war in Iraq) and then show pictures of these atrocities with, say, one ten-thousandth of the zeal with which they showed pictures of the infinitely less serious instances of abuse at Abu Ghraib. Pictures like these:
Why don't they do that? It would help America to defeat its enemy by helping to ruin al Qaeda's already tarnished reputation in the Muslim world. But the media generally won't name the perpetrators and won't even go so far as to call them terrorists (this despite the fact that the "bombers" intentionally targeted and then slaughtered a large number of unsuspecting, unarmed, and completely innocent men, women and children)

Generally Isolated

I raise this with exasperation since lately we are told that various radical Islamic groups—Hezbollah, Hamas, Al Qaeda, or the Muslim Brotherhood—are not all alike. But who is? And what does it matter if their generic hatred of the West and the United States in particular is predicated on the West Bank, Lebanon, Afghanistan, or our failure, according to Dr. Zawhiri, to sign the Kyoto accords? I’m sure our grandfathers did not resent the insensitive lumping together of Mussolini with Hitler and Tojo because there were undeniable differences between Bushido, National Socialism, and Fascism.
Thus by insisting that the mind is only capable of evaluating the "trees"; by invalidating any attempts to see the "forest", Postmodernism has successfully isolated our minds from objective reality and truth.

No Getting Around It: The Conclusion

By contrast, Nancy Pelosi eerily ignores this issue altogether
I encourage you to visit her web page and read the whole thing. You won't find a single reference to al Qaeda, and that's just creepy. It's as if al Qaeda in Iraq is so utterly inconsequential that it need not even be mentioned --- not even in passing -- when debating what to do about Iraq or how to conceptualize what will happen when we leave. I think it's because she is aware that most Americans are oblivious to the threat, and she does not want to contribute to their awakening (for fear of helping Bush). And the New York Times is gearing up to help her out.

Wake up, America. No one is "hyping" the threat posed by al Qaeda in Iraq, but many are in a state of denial about it (including the entire Democratic leadership). And because of the media we have today, they can easily get away with it.
Frankly, I don't see how Pelosi can behave the vacuous way she does and understand that Al Qaeda is even in Iraq. There's simply no "there there".

And she's the leader of the Congressional Democrats. Not eerie.


Abu Ali

The recent stories of baked children came to mind. I asked if Abu Ali had heard about children being baked. Ali said no, he had not heard such a story, but he would not be surprised if it were true because al Qaeda had done so many crimes, such as cutting off a man’s head, putting it up on a stick and parading it around town.

“I ask one thing,” and now I paraphrase Ali’s words: “After the Iraqi Army and Police take hold and the security forces are ready, we want a schedule for the leaving of the American forces.”

“I will tell the Americans this,

The same Zawahiri who issued al Qaeda’s latest call for recruits sent a letter to Zarqawi back in 2005, warning him to stop cutting off people’s heads and broadcasting it. Zawahiri’s version of a “Values Message” cautioned Zarqawi that these grostesqueries were losing al Qaeda the support of Muslims. He was right. Al Qaeda is no longer welcome in Baqubah.

No Getting Around It

...many of your Muslim admirers amongst the common folk are wondering about your attacks on the Shia. The sharpness of this questioning increases when the attacks are on one of their mosques, and it increases more when the attacks are on the mausoleum of Imam Ali Bin Abi Talib, may God honor him. My opinion is that this matter won't be acceptable to the Muslim populace however much you have tried to explain it, and aversion to this will continue.
Indeed, these attacks have not been acceptable to the Muslim population, which is why (I presume) al Qaeda's reputation has been damaged throughout the Muslim world. On the other hand, those attacks have served to greatly demoralize Americans and their representatives in Washington.
The first stage: Expel the Americans from Iraq.

In other words, the Democratic plan to withdraw American troops from Iraq corresponds precisely to Zawahiri's first objective. There is no getting around this.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Duranty's Legacy Lives On

The New York Times has been criticized for helping terrorists in the past by disclosing investigatory methods and rendition policies and practices, supporting them in its editorial pages and allowing terror suspects to spin their stories in the news section, disclosing methods our nation has used to prevent funds from reaching terrorists
, condemned the existence of prisons holding terrorists, criticizing the laws brought to bear to prevent terrorism, and whitewashing or apologizing for terror when it occurs. 

In fact, they have done far worse.
the paper has consistently mislead its readers (including a large percentage of the policy-making elites) regarding the goals and nature of the Iranian nuclear program and the lethal malevolency that fuels its development.
The Times is fulfilling a role that it once did so show shamefully in the 1930s: an enabler of genocide.

The intentions of the regime can be discerned through its words and actions. Iran has long boasted of its plans to wreak nuclear destruction upon Israel, even before the world heard the rantings of its current President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. In 2001, its former President Rafsanjani (still a power broker in Iran) boasted that one day the Islamic world would have a nuclear weapon and that its use against Israel would destroy that state, while the any retaliation against the Arab world would only inflict relatively minor damages because of the vastness of the Arab world.

This was not ambitious enough for the current President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who boasts of his plans to destroy America and Israel. In widely reported remarks, he called for Israel to be wiped "off the face of the earth". Even media outlets distinctly unfavorable to Israel reported this boast. Less frequently quoted remarks from the same speech called for the destruction of America. However, alone among major and minor media outlets, the Times displayed an unseemly alacrity in ignoring the clear meaning of his remarks and has been promoting the view that this destruction was not what Ahamdinejad advocated.

The paper, in an article that ran in its influential Sunday edition, presented an almost delusional benign view of Ahamdinejad's words that virtually no one accepts (even groups with a history of animosity towards Israel): Ahmadinejad is merely calling for "regime change" in Israel. Somehow, the image of Ahamdinejad espousing the ouster of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert does not ring true. Who did the Times find to validate its absurd view? Juan Cole. Professor Cole teaches at the University of Michigan, and is widely known for his anti-Israel activism and for his blog that consistently takes harshly anti-Israel view. He has been widely criticized for his scholarly failings.


The New York Times has a shameful history regarding its coverage of genocidal dictators. Laurel Leff recently wrote a revelatory book, Buried by the Times: The Holocaust and America's Most Important Newspaper, that was a masterful and meticulously constructed expose of how the paper throughout the1930s and 1940s averted its eyes (and the eyes of its readers) from the outrages committed by Nazi Germany. The Times all but ignored the depredations being visited upon the Jews of Europe, and refused to report in any forthright manner the existence of mass murder. In minimizing the extremism of Hitler and ignoring the violence he was committing against the Jews (and others), the paper played a role in our nation's feeble response to the rise of Hitler. The rising dangers to America and to the world were systematically ignored or belittled by the paper, which deliberately and willfully "deep-sixed" the developments that led to the deaths of 6 million Jews and many millions of non-Jews. The record of the "paper of record" is clear.*

History repeats itself, first as tragedy, later as farce. The New York Times has unparalled abilty to create the news agenda that the rest of American media follows. Many of our decision-makers rely on the Times for its views of the world and for the opinions it promotes. The Times has portrayed Iran and its nuclear program in the most benign way possible: explaining away its apocalyptic ideology through abusrd translation gymnastics that rely on a marginal professor, apologizing or ignoring its role in promoting terror and the deaths of Americans and other peoples, minimizing at all turns the risks of its nuclear program, and depicting an Iran that is being bullied by America and one that should be allowed to develop not only its nuclear technology but also a nuclear arsenal. In the Times view, America should come to accept this "reality".

The Iranian dictator boasts of his desire to remove Israel from the "pages of time"; if he succeeds, the pages of the Times will again play a role in yet another Holocaust.

Read it and weep.

Pious Hits 100

clipped from

One of the early reports mispelled Prius as Pious. Made my day.


clipped from

I think it's important for the Commander-in-Chief to listen carefully to what the enemy says. They thrive on chaos. They like the turmoil. It enables them to more likely achieve their objectives. What they can't stand is the advance of an alternative ideology that will end up marginalizing them.

So I looked at consequences of stepping back -- the consequences not only for Iraq, but the consequences for an important neighborhood for the security of the United States of America. What would the Iranians think about America if we stepped back in the face of this extremist challenge? What would other extremists think? What would al Qaeda be able to do? They'd be able to recruit better and raise more money from which to launch their objectives. Failure in Iraq would have serious consequences for the security of your children and your grandchildren.

Welcome To The Perfect Storm

The rich vein of irony present in these remarks I will leave the readers to mine. But the underlying point should be well taken. Many of America's allies -- who are now preferred by those who favor "stability" and "realism" in response to alarm at efforts to "bring Democracy to Iraq" and who see even Saddam Hussein in nostalgic terms -- these allies, are really authoritarian regimes.
The third dimension to the Pakistani crisis is international. President Musharraf is not the only President under siege.
Washington is governed by a man who can hardly turn the wheel of state and men who will not touch it, content to pelt the captain with tomatoes and old shoes.
And hovering over everything is one background factor. Pakistan is a nuclear-armed state. Its fall to Islamists or spiral downward into an indecisive chaos would, coupled with the three factors mentioned above, unleash a perfect storm.

Wretchard Comments: "Good Luck To Us All"

The Islamic radical is portrayed as the cultural equivalent of the Western nihilist, eager to forget tradition and supplant it with his own vision. It is a movement contemptuous of the common, the workaday and human failing and worshipful of the superman.

Ironically one of the problems Husein implictly identifies is that Islamic radicalism is virulent precisely because it treats the Koran as a literal. Unlike the Islamic societies whose mental compilers have been modified by long acommodation with Christian, Jewish or Pagan neighbors -- a mental compiler softened by "centuries of context, nuance, history, grammar, lexicon, scholarship" -- these new radicals interpret the Koran like an "engineering manual". Word for word. And the result is a horror.

In many ways both the struggle against utopian Communism and radical Islamism can be seen in terms of common humanity trying to regain the control of central myths which have been usurped by hierophantic maniacal cultists. Good luck to us all

Engineering Nihilism

clipped from
As a teenager, I attended extremist Islamist meetings with tens of medical students at the Royal London Hospital. Islamists in almost every British medical school held similar meetings. At Britain’s most prestigious engineering colleges, including Brunel University and Imperial College, fanatical Islamists with a worldview of separatism and violence recruited without impediment—yesterday’s Islamists are today’s terrorists. Right from the very top of the terrorist hierarchy, Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri downward(Bin Laden’s Egyptian deputy); the soldiers of extremism have all traveled a similar path: past membership of the Muslim Brotherhood, a secular education, rejection of mainstream Muslims, a hatred for the West and ultimately taking up arms against peoples and governments. …

They approach the Qu’ran as though it were an engineering manual, with instructions for right and wrong conduct. Literalism and ignorance dominates their readings.

Today's Battle Of The Midgets Update

clipped from

Is your senator a friend or foe of earmark reform?

Check the data and see where your state's two senators rank (higher ratings are better). If you think they should do better, tell them. And if you live in a state that has one or a couple of senators who score highly on the Index, let them know you appreciate their efforts. Either way, let your senators know where you stand, so they'll know where they should stand the next time the Senate clerk calls their name.
Courtesy of the Demopublicans. I guess if you compare the Democrat graph to the Republican one you could make the case that the Repubs are only venal instead of outright corrupt like the Dems.

But we truly ignore Jefferson at our own peril:

In 1821, with truly remarkable foresight, Mr. Jefferson wrote in a letter to Macon that 'our Government is now taking so steady a course as to show by what road it will pass to destruction, to wit: by consolidation first [i.e., centralisation] and then corruption, its necessary consequence.'

The Fine Line Between Appearance And Certainty

clipped from
In 2004, two business partners of Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) sold an empty lot in Anchorage to the National Archives and Records Administration for just over $3.5 million, more than doubling their year-old investment in the property.

But the project is one of several valuable contracts that the developers, Leonard Hyde and Jonathan Rubini, entered into with federal agencies while Stevens was either the ranking member or chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee — and had significant investments in several Rubini/Hyde companies.

Stevens’ investments with the two real estate magnates over a seven-year period turned him from one of the Senate’s least wealthy Members into a millionaire, according to his financial records and statements by Stevens over the years.

That relationship has prompted questions from watchdogs who say, at the least, it raises the potential for an appearance of a conflict of interest.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Dr. Terror

clipped from

Maybe our understanding of true believers will be advanced by the war, and maybe not. All those people who were amazed to find medical doctors running a terror cell, there was no excuse for that. Walter Laqueur noticed, some thirty years ago, that there was a disproportionate number of MDs in terrorist organizations, and Sherlock Holmes was well aware of the propensity of (even) brilliant scientists to turn to crime, as in the case of his nemesis, Dr. Moriarty. So we shouldn’t be surprised.

Still, there are many who still think that “science” is somehow a protection against fanaticism. Which it isn’t, any more than wealth is (those of you who still believe that terrorists are the way they are because of poverty and misery should report for reprogramming in the morning).

What can protect us against fanatics? The power to defeat them, and the will to use it. And constantly reminding us of Machiavelli’s dictum: “Man is more inclined to do evil than to do good…”

But No

We can safely assume that the timing of the British terror attempts was intended to coincide with the change in government leadership, in exactly the same way as the terror hits on the Madrid railway system were timed for the Spanish general election in 2004. The tactic works. The terrorists successfully swung that election, to the party that would cut-and-run from Iraq. And had several hundred Britons been killed, as the NHS doctors intended, demands for British withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan, in both the media and Parliament, would have been overwhelming.

The problem with defeatism is that it leads to defeat -- not to peace. Ask the Spaniards whose tour bus convoy was driven into by an exploding car in Yemen over the same weekend. At least, ask those who survived.
But no: Al Qaeda considers not the behaviour of Spain, but the existence of Spain, to be offensive. Their propaganda is unambiguous: the terror will stop when “Al Andalus” returns to Shariah.

They're Special

clipped from
-- More than 5,700 illegal migrants from 43 Islamic countries, including State Sponsors of Terror, have been caught while traveling over the Canadian and Mexican borders along well-established underground smuggling routes since 9-11, a traffic that continues daily. People caught coming from these countries in the Middle East, South Asia and North Africa are labeled by our federal law enforcement agencies as "Special Interest Aliens."
-- Unguarded U.S. borders are most certainly in terrorist playbooks as a means of entering the country. Since the late 1990s, at least a dozen confirmed terrorists have sneaked over U.S. borders, including operatives from Hezbollah, Hamas, the Tamil Tigers and one Al Qaida terrorist once No. 27 on the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorist list.

The Imaginary Line

As I write these words just a few miles from the graves I saw, the resulting controversy about whether what the man said was true, or whether his words should have been written if the writer couldn’t verify them, seems precious. There is no imaginary line of credulity that al Qaeda might cross should it go from beheading children to baking them.
Al Qaeda: the organization that gleefully bragged about murdering roughly 3,000 people by smashing jets full of civilians into buildings and earth. Al Qaeda in Iraq: who proudly broadcast their penchant for sawing off the heads of living breathing people, and in such a manner as to ensure lots of spurting blood and gurgles of final pain, in some cases with the added flourish of the executioner raising up the severed head and squealing excitedly.

And Don't Forget That Ol' Time Liberal Religion

And Whiskey_199 has hit on something related to that NPR culture. "If you look at the reasons WHY the ACLU and others offer Miranda/Geneva protections, it's the "moral" reason. Which boils down to moral superiority being the most important priority of those who argue for it."

As with the ACLU, so with NPR. They are liberals: that is, they consider their job to be the discovery and pointing out of various problems, such as mass murderers hiding among civilians. It's the job of other lesser beings to go out and fix the flaws - of course subject to further brilliant criticism from the liberals when the methods used in the fixing don't rise to the liberals' standard of perfection.

Nothing describes that liberal standard better than 'holier-than-thou'.

The Hallmark

The hallmark of true evil -- not the violence of passion -- is the delight it takes in torturing the innocent. Pets, children, the helpless. All must be hurt and heard to beg. Evil has no purpose but cruelty. It begins with a plausible reason, but finally it exists only for itself. It's a terrible place and those who have lived as sinners have seen this dark place from afar; like a terrible country crowned with lightnings in the distance and some have been lucky enough to tell of their escape.

But for most of us, the place to be is in the sunny meadow. And pray to God you have the wisdom to stay there. Beware the caverns. In them there may be demons beyond your strength.

Quacks Like A Duck...

Al Qaeda is not a union, it doesn’t issue passports. What is al Qaeda but the collection of people who claim to be al Qaeda?

The al Qaeda who committed atrocities in Afghanistan, New York . . . the list is long. As for al Ahamir, the massacre “walks like a duck.” It happened in duck headquarters. The people here say the duck did it. The duck laughs.

It fashionable today no longer to restrict the protections of the Geneva Conventions to men under discipline but to any thug or maniac with a gun who claims he is fighting for a cause. Even if that cause is to destroy the very civilization which drafted the Conventions. But in degrading the advantages of wearing uniform, observing discipline and adhering to standards, those "modern advocates" have returned not humanity, but restored barbarism to the battlefield.

It's All Eggs For "Eggheads"

The first, says Furet-and I discuss this at length in my opening chapter, "Capitalism and the Suicide of Culture"-is the egalitarianism unleashed by liberal democracy. The idea of man's universal equality, claimed by liberal democracy as its foundation, is inherently unstable-and subject to a kind of radical overbidding. The very freedoms that liberal societies secure-to pursue wealth, to better one's condition, to create, to strive for success-unceasingly generate new inequalities, since not everybody has the same talent, the same background, the same luck, the same propensity to work. Equality becomes a kind of imaginary horizon, forever retreating as our societies seek to approach it. Communism said it would achieve this equality, once and for all; it just had to break a few eggs, get rid of some political obstacles, accelerate history.
achieving a more equal society, muses Rawls, may require genetic engineering, to overcome natural differences


What's going on? Is the New York Times in a hurry for an Islamic caliphate? Or are they just out of their effing minds?

The argument seems to be that we've been in Iraq for too long, so we should leave right now. While a case could have been made for getting out right after removing Saddam Hussein, we're way past that stage. I don't care how stupidly things have been handled, the dynamics on the ground right now are such that if we weren't in Iraq already, we'd be plumb crazy not to go in -- simply because our most fanatic and dedicated enemies are there. And the Times says we should leave? Are they kidding?

Ever since Mogadishu, Al Qaeda has always banked on American weakness, and they're banking on it again.

I cannot think of a better way to lose the war against al Qaeda than to do as the Times says and leave Iraq.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Just In Case You Live In A Cave...

clipped from

I then asked Armitage a question that had been puzzling me but, for the sake of my future peace of mind, would better have been left unasked.

Why would the CIA send Joseph Wilson, not an expert in nuclear proliferation and with no intelligence experience, on the mission to Niger?

"Well," Armitage replied, "you know his wife works at CIA, and she suggested that he be sent to Niger." "His wife works at CIA?" I asked. "Yeah, in counterproliferation."

He mentioned her first name, Valerie. Armitage smiled and said: "That's real Evans and Novak, isn't it?" I believe he meant that was the kind of inside information that my late partner, Rowland Evans, and I had featured in our column for so long. I interpreted that as meaning Armitage expected to see the item published in my column.

The exchange about Wilson's wife lasted no more than sixty seconds.

Truth: A Comment On The Difficulties

Whether it is the Beslan atrocity or the late Zarqawi and his merry band of beheaders or a thousand other Islamist acts ; the western media and leftist political class can't judge these things as it would show their philosophy to be utopian folly. So instead they undermine our morale and preach defeatism by a thousand tiny cuts.

Fishing For Truth

Truthfulness, then, is not just the reporting of facts. Alasdair MacIntyre maintains that facts, like gentlemen’s wigs and telescopes, were not invented until the seventeenth century. Truth is the basis of human community. It is the medium in which we encounter and belong to each other. St Augustine talked of humanity as ‘the community of truth.’ He was virulently opposed to a heresy called Pricillianism, which maintained that one was under no obligation to tell the truth to strangers. There is a lot of it about today! For Augustine telling the truth to strangers is part of building the human community, constructing the Kingdom. And this explains why many theologians were extremely intolerant of even white lies. To lie was not just to fail to be accurate. It is destructive of language, the basis of human solidarity. ...

Lies pollute our natural environment. We die spiritually, like fish in a polluted river.

Of Inmates And Asylums

At this point in history, after Oslo, after countless suicide bombings and murders perpetrated by the very people Olmert is lauding as “moderates,” there’s absolutely no excuse for this kind of delusional thinking. The inmates truly are running the asylum.

The Not So Big Surprise

clipped from
Asgari, who according to reports is being held in a top-secret military installation, has been able to shed a new light on much of the Iranian regime's
most inner workings, especially regarding the Iranian nuclear development project.


Up until now, Iran – according to known intelligence – has been building two nuclear plants, in Arak and Bushehr, and has been using centrifuges to enrich uranium.


Iran, Asgari told his interrogator's is working in another, stealth path, toward achieving its nuclear goal.


This third method involves attempts to enrich uranium by using laser beams along with certain chemicals designed to enhance the process. These trials are held in a special weapons facility in Natanz.


Keeping quiet  

Iran, said Asgari, is making special efforts to hide this path from the West, keeping it as a fallback in case international sanctions or a military strike should shut down or destroy the existing plants.

Diversity Deranged

London - British public safety officials today increased the national alert level to "Quite Elevated Indeed" -- the highest category possible -- and appealed to UK citizens to "keep a sharp lookout for diverse people engaged in activities."

"We ask the public to report any behaviors by various people that may or may not be of a suspicious nature," said Lt. Clive Jameson of the Metropolitan Police Service. "We further ask the public to be especially vigilant for activities of broad stratas of people who may be from countries of some sort, especially those within the eastern and/or western hemisphere."

The elevated alert levels come on the heels of a week when London and Glasgow narrowly escaped potential events that intelligence experts say may have been related to diverse groups of people doing things.