ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
This post by TBogg is a must read, he eviscerates Michelle Malkin's latest spewing wherein she equates herself to a "lion" and Cindy Sheehan and Sally Fields to a "lamb". It's both infuriating and heartbreaking. My favorite commenter replies thusly:

For all of Michelle's boasting of being a lion mother, hers is nothing but posturing and false bravado.

There is nothing brave about firing a pistol at a poster of Osama bin Laden on the anniversary of 9/11 or wearing a t-shirt that reads "I Will Not Submit" in the safe confines of her Maryland suburban community.

What Michelle Malkin does not get is that dealing with the problem of jihadist terrorism requires nuanced responses. Bombing people in Iraq or Afghanistan might satisfy one's need for revenge for 9/11 or prejudice against Muslims, but it does nothing to solve the problem we face.
[ed. note: indeed it has made the problem worse by several orders of magnitude]

This war will ultimately not be won by the United States military but by an emerging moderate Muslim majority that accepts tolerance and pluralism. In order to do that, we must reach out to them and show them that they have a stake in living in peaceful coexistence with us. And this is something that the Michelle Malkins of the world just seem incapable of understanding.

ebonlock: (Monarch)
Glenn Greenwald has a fascinating piece up today about American foreign policy in which he succinctly and accurately lays out the fact that the only voices considered "serious" are those who, in reality, have embraced and endorsed the concept of America as an imperial power.

That is why war opponents on the "left" -- including bloggers -- were and still are deemed Unserious even though they proved to be correct. Their opposition was not based (at least principally) on the belief that we were using the wrong "force deployment packages," that the timing was wrong, that we should have waited a little longer (that type of "opposition" was the only permitted type). Rather, it was largely based on the notion that the war itself was illegitimate because Iraq had not attacked us and could not threaten our national security, and that going around bombing, invading and occupying other countries which haven't attacked us is both immoral and/or self-destructive.

Note: I actually was dubbed "hysterical" when I expressed these same views back in 2003, I'm not sure if overall that's better or worse than "unserious"...

Yet these days, expressing that rather ordinary belief -- that it is wrong to start a war against a country except where they attack you, are about to, or directly threaten your national security (such as by harboring terrorist groups waging attacks on your country) -- will subject you to the accusation that you are a "pacifist," a term Daniel Drezer incoherently (though revealingly) applies to me.

That is how far we have come, how low we have fallen, how recklessly and extraordinarily pro-war we are as a country as a result of our Foreign Policy Community. Now, if you believe that we should wage war only when a country actually attacks us or threatens our national security, then you are a "pacifist," an unserious leftist who is removed from mainstream discourse.

Urge all the wars you want for any reason -- be a wild-eyed disciple of Bill Kristol and Norm Podhoretz and Newt Gingrich -- and you will be deemed Very Serious. But question the fundamental premises of America's right to rule the world through the use of military force, challenge whether we ought to be starting one war after the next and constantly intervening even when our national security is not even arguably at risk, and be dismissed away by our war hungry Foreign Policy Establishment as an unserious pacifist.
ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
Clearly I'm a little slow, but why are we staying in Iraq again?

On Tuesday, without note in the U.S. media, more than half of the members of Iraq's parliament rejected the continuing occupation of their country. 144 lawmakers signed onto a legislative petition calling on the United States to set a timetable for withdrawal, according to Nassar Al-Rubaie, a spokesman for the Al Sadr movement, the nationalist Shia group that sponsored the petition.

It's a hugely significant development. Lawmakers demanding an end to the occupation now have the upper hand in the Iraqi legislature for the first time; previous attempts at a similar resolution fell just short of the 138 votes needed to pass (there are 275 members of the Iraqi parliament, but many have fled the country's civil conflict, and at times it's been difficult to arrive at a quorum).
ebonlock: (Brock pissed)
Answer: Sadly, No!

Read this and weep:

The number of terrorism incidents in Iraq — and resulting deaths, injuries and kidnappings — skyrocketed from 2005 to 2006, according to statistics released by U.S. counterterrorism officials yesterday.

Of the 14,338 reported terrorist attacks worldwide last year, 45 percent took place in Iraq, and 65 percent of the global fatalities stemming from terrorism occurred in Iraq. In 2005, Iraq accounted for 30 percent of the worldwide terrorist attacks.
Almost all of those incidents involved the death, injury or kidnapping of at least one person. All told, the number of people killed, injured or kidnapped as a result of terrorism in Iraq jumped 87 percent, from 20,685 to 38,713.

But here's the money quote:

The State Department’s annual report — which included an assessment of the five years since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks — said the invasion of Iraq has brought “measurable benefits,” including the removal of “an abusive totalitarian regime with a history of sponsoring and supporting regional terrorism.”

ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
I admit I missed Bill Moyers scathing expose on the media's culpability in the run up to the Iraq war, but thankfully by just clicking on the link I can do so right on the web. Yay PBS! And yay Bill for finally running with this in a serious way. I've read a lot of excerpts and coverage of the piece, and if you haven't you should check out one or both.

None of it will come as much of a surprise to most of you, I expect, but it is at least cathartic to see it covered now. If for no other reason than watching some of the war's cheerleaders (thought not it's biggest cheerleaders, none of them had the balls to face Moyers) actually being held accountable for their actions.
ebonlock: (Monarch)

Dear Mr Broder,

As a life-long Democrat, please allow me to inform you that I am not the least bit embarrassed by Senator Reid's admission that the war in Iraq is lost. I am never embarrassed when a politician of any party speaks the truth.

The war isn't just now lost. It isn't being lost. It has always been lost. It was lost from the moment President Bush decided he could get rid of Saddam Hussein and a completely formed, competent, honest, democratic, non-sectarian Iraqi government, accepted and respected by all the people of Iraq, would magically appear overnight to take charge of the country in Saddam's place.

It was lost from the moment the President decided he could have his magic war on the cheap, without committing either the money or the troops necessary to the task.

It was lost from the moment he decided that he would get to have his magic war by lying to the American people about why we had to go to war, how long the war would take, how easy it would be, and what little price we would have to pay in money, time, reputation, blood, and grief.

If you don't accept any of those moments as the moment when the war was lost, then let me propose another, slightly more recent moment, but still a moment that pre-dates Seantor Reid's remarks by over a year.

The war was lost the moment the majority of the American people realized that the President had lied to them, that he and his advisers did not have any idea how to fight let alone win their magic war, and that the President's only definition of "victory" is that he gets to leave office without having to admit that he lied about the war and mismanaged it and in fact lost it.

Actually, I'm not sure that it's correct to use words like "victory" and "lost" when talking about a war that was apparently waged for no other reasons than to stroke a childish President's vanity and allow a corrupt Vice-President's friends to plunder another country.

There is never any victory to be had in disgracing the United States and we the People cannot be said to have lost the private freebooting adventure of a gang of reckless, dishonest, incompetent men.

So, no, I am not embarrassed by Senator Reid. As someone who came of political age during Watergate and a one-time admirer of the Washington Post, I am embarrassed to hear that one of the Post's most distinguished journalists is making stuff up about what the American people think, about what Democrats feel, about what Senator Reid has done and said, all in order to protect his own ego and vanity from the truth of the disaster President Bush has made in Iraq, a disaster he was able to perpetrate with the help of his apologists in the Media, such as you, sir.

Senator Reid owes no one an apology. You owe him one, and you owe us one.


Lance Mannion


Apr. 23rd, 2007 10:08 am
ebonlock: (Bollocks!)
Yeah hindsight's all 20/20 and shit:

The most powerful indictment of the news media for falling down in its duties in the run-up to the war in Iraq will appear next Wednesday, a 90-minute PBS broadcast called “Buying the War,” which marks the return of “Bill Moyers Journal.” E&P was sent a preview DVD and a draft transcript for the program this week. […]

Among the few heroes of this devastating film are reporters with the Knight Ridder/McClatchy bureau in D.C. Tragically late, Walter Isaacson, who headed CNN, observes, “The people at Knight Ridder were calling the colonels and the lieutenants and the people in the CIA and finding out, you know, that the intelligence is not very good. We should’ve all been doing that.”

At the close, Moyers mentions some of the chief proponents of the war who refused to speak to him for this program, including Thomas Friedman, Bill Kristol, Roger Ailes, Charles Krauthammer, Judith Miller, and William Safire.

But Dan Rather, the former CBS anchor, admits, “I don’t think there is any excuse for, you know, my performance and the performance of the press in general in the roll up to the war…We didn’t dig enough. And we shouldn’t have been fooled in this way.” Bob Simon, who had strong doubts about evidence for war, was asked by Moyers if he pushed any of the top brass at CBS to “dig deeper,” and he replies, “No, in all honesty, with a thousand mea culpas….nope, I don’t think we followed up on this.”

Instead he covered the marketing of the war in a “softer” way, explaining to Moyers: “I think we all felt from the beginning that to deal with a subject as explosive as this, we should keep it, in a way, almost light – if that doesn’t seem ridiculous.”

I'm sorry, Bob, but that does, in fact, seem ridiculous. I really hope it helps you to sleep at night, but aside from that it's about the lamest goddamn rationalization I've heard in a while. I also really hope it comforts the families of those who have been killed in Iraq. What? Not "light" enough for you, you jackass? Read the rest if you really want an excuse to beat your head against a wall.
ebonlock: (Bob)
Whiz! Go The Goalposts

How much contact did there have to be between al Qaeda and Saddam for the U.S. to be legitimately concerned?

* Although we actually went to war with Iraq because of [mumble mumble], the fact that Saddam didn’t have a relationship with Al Qaeda only enabled the threat that he could have started one.

Qetesh the Abyssinian responds:

I thought your headline was a joke, but no, it’s the actual headline. I read the article, then read some of the comments.

Folks, these people scare the crap out of me. Maybe it’s because a relative of mine died a few days ago, so I’ve been thinking about life and death and things like that. Or maybe it’s because I’m a girly progressive. Or maybe it’s because I’m barking mad. Dunno.

But the fact that these people are seriously espousing what amounts to genocide, based on fear of some possible attack in the future, scares the absolute bejeezus out of me. It doesn’t matter to them whether or not Saddam had any contacts with al Qaeda at all. It doesn’t matter to them whether or not Saddam had any WMDs: hell, he coulda maybe got some, sooner or later, and that’s enough for these folks.

And the blind, stubborn, pig-headed insistence that what they believe will happen, will happen, or indeed is happening, just knocks the wind out of me. They believe firmly that killing a bunch of Iraqis will make the turr’rists sit up and pay attention, and lordy lordy, that’s what they see. They believe that the US has the right, nay, the duty, to go out killing furr’ners, in their own homes no less, and fail completely to entertain the thought that those same furr’ners might not like it.

To say nothing of the absolute, solid gold, all-singing all-dancing, Stupid involved in the idea that the US is threatened by anyone, anywhere. Jesus wept, people, don’t you have the slightest idea of the enormous weapons disparity between the US and the rest of the world? That’s like Mike Tyson being afraid of a 3-year-old.

And, of course, the long-running idiocy of claiming the War Against Teh West, when these idiots (a) have likely never been out of the US; (b) don’t know any furr’ners at all; (c) don’t speak the language and therefore have no idea of translation issues or local non-US news. All that ignorance in one sweaty, cheeto-stained package, yet they claim superior knowledge based on god knows what.

I’ve had it. I’ve had enough of being human (or at least pretending). From now on, I’m from a different species than these bozos. I want nothing to do with this homocidal idiocy.

And RandomObserver adds:

I have yet to team up with Darth Vader and Zombie Hitler, but that only leaves open the dreadful possibility that I might at some point in the future.
ebonlock: (Bollocks!)
Institutionalized corruption? Wow, that didn't take long:

Iraq's top corruption fighter said Wednesday that $8 billion in government money was wasted or stolen over the past three years and claimed he was threatened with death after opening an investigation into scores of Oil Ministry employees.

In the chaos and lawlessness of Iraq, such threats are not taken lightly. Radi al-Radhi, who runs the Public Integrity Commission, leads one of the more dangerous missions in the country. He said in an interview with The Associated Press that 20 members of the organization have been murdered since it began its work.

In perhaps the most publicized recent case, an estimated $2 billion disappeared from funds to rebuild the electricity infrastructure.

Former Electricity Minister Ayham al-Samaraie, who holds both U.S. and Iraqi citizenship, was convicted in that case and sentenced to two years in prison. He escaped from an Iraqi-run jail in the Green Zone on Dec. 17 and turned up in Chicago on Jan. 15. Al-Samaraie has said the Americans helped him escape.

Al-Radhi said the commission has investigated about 2,600 corruption cases since it was established in March 2004, a few months before the United States returned sovereignty to Iraq. He estimated $8 billion has vanished or been misappropriated.

Corruption in the country, while traditionally rampant, is encouraged by constitutional clause 136 B, al-Radhi said. It gives Cabinet ministers the power to block his investigations.


Jan. 22nd, 2007 01:10 pm
ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
Frank Rich:

The president’s pretense that Mr. Maliki and his inept, ill-equipped, militia-infiltrated security forces can advance American interests in this war is Neville Chamberlain-like in its naiveté and disingenuousness. An American military official in Baghdad read the writing on the wall to The Times last week: “We are implementing a strategy to embolden a government that is actually part of the problem. We are being played like a pawn.” That’s why the most destructive lie of all may be the White House’s constant refrain that its doomed strategy is the only one anyone has proposed. Administration critics, Mr. Cheney said last Sunday, “have absolutely nothing to offer in its place,” as if the Iraq Study Group, John Murtha and Joseph Biden-Leslie Gelb plans, among others, didn’t predate the White House’s own.

In reality we’re learning piece by piece that it is the White House that has no plan. Ms. Rice has now downsized the surge/escalation into an “augmentation,” inadvertently divulging how the Pentagon is improvising, juggling small deployments in fits and starts. No one can plausibly explain how a parallel chain of command sending American and Iraqi troops into urban street combat side by side will work with Iraqis in the lead (it will report to a “committee” led by Mr. Maliki!). Or how $1 billion in new American reconstruction spending will accomplish what the $30 billion thrown down the drain in previous reconstruction spending did not.

All of this replays 2003, when the White House refused to consider any plan, including existing ones in the Pentagon and State Department bureaucracies, for coping with a broken post-Saddam Iraq. Then, as at every stage of the war since, the only administration plan was for a propaganda campaign to bamboozle American voters into believing “victory” was just around the corner.

ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
George Bush Has No Soul:
When you watch the absolutely bone-chilling 60 Minutes interview with President George Bush, there is only one conclusion you can come to: the man has no soul. No, it's not that he sold his soul to the devil (the children of the wealthy can laugh when Beelzebub shows up at their doorways). It's that he was actually lives without a soul, without anything that would denote his humanity more than flesh. Things like that happen sometimes in this crazy universe. Probably it was the result of dry, desperate sperm from H.W. heaving and wheezing its way up Bar's desert-like fallopian tubes to her shrunken, bitter egg. Or, if he was born with it, it more than likely said, "Oh, fuck, I'm so outta here" after a toddler W. killed his first baby bird.

For what person that actually feels things for human beings can say some of the shit Bush tried to con Scott Pelley with. Things like, "Our economy's good and people are, you know, helping their neighbors. And so I'm not saying that the danger the country felt after September 11th has slipped." You see that? It's a cuddle, then a slap. (It's not to mention the stupid factor of people "helping their neighbors," like the United States is one happy goddamned block in Mayberry.)

Things like the much-quoted, "I think the Iraqi people owe the American people a huge debt of gratitude, and I believe most Iraqis express that," which makes one wonder if he still thinks this is like the liberation of Paris, 'cause the Rude Pundit's pretty fuckin' sure that the French women would not have been throwin' their perfumed pussies at American troops if the Nazi collaborators were blowin' shit up every day. Things like, "Everybody was wrong on weapons of mass destruction," a lie that Bush used to answer a question on whether or not the administration lied.

Things like, in response to Pelley's question about whether or not Iranians supplying the insurgency is an act of war, "I'm not a lawyer. So act of war is kind of a . . . I'm not exactly sure how you define that," when he had earlier spent part of the interview madly emphasizing his Commander-in-Chief/decider status when it comes to anything to do with the war. Toss in his insistence that we should only worry about the now "rather than debating the past," and you've got insight into a man without a soul to worry his little heart.
ebonlock: (Default)
There are spankings and then there are SPANKINGS, and poor Dinesh D’Souza was left sniffling and teary-eyed after Stephen Colbert administered the paddling of a lifetime to his backside.

And from the "The Stupid, it Burns!" file, I present Richard Cohen:

When politicians and commentators detail all that the Bush administration did wrong, I wonder whether any of it really matters. Would things have turned out differently if we had done everything right? Was Iraq so “broken” we never could have fixed it? Was Hussein’s despotism an avoidable tragedy, or was it, instead, a tragic necessity? I wonder about all these things. I tend to think now we never could have made it work.

Now, of course, everyone looks like an idiot. Bremer was an idiot and Garner was an idiot and Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz and Cheney and all the generals, with the exception of Gen. Eric K. Shinseki, who called for lots and lots of troops and was sidelined. But these men are not really idiots. They were merely wrong, sometimes on account of arrogance, but they were doing what they thought was the right thing. They simply didn’t know what they didn’t know. They didn’t know a damned thing about Iraq.

Now I don't know about you guys, but it would seem Mr. Cohen is the very definition of a useful idiot.
ebonlock: (Default)
If any of you guys can follow the tortured logic of Jane Galt in this seminal "you-a culpa" blort, well my hat's off to you:

Now, of course, I supported the war, so I can be expected to say something like what I am about to say. My only excuse is that I have been thinking hard about this, trying to pick out what went wrong, and I think that I am willing to admit where I was wrong. I was wrong to impute too much confidence to my ability to interpret Saddam Hussein's actions; I was wrong to not foresee how humiliating Iraqis would find being liberated by the westerners who have been tramping around their country, breaking things for their own reasons and with little regard for the Iraqi people, for several hundred years. I was wrong to impute excessive competence to the government--and not just the Bush administration, but to any government occupation.


This has not convinced me of the brilliance of the doves, because precisely none of the ones that I argued with predicted that things would go wrong in the way they did. If you get the right result, with the wrong mechanism, do you get credit for being right, or being lucky? In some way, they got it just as wrong as I did: nothing that they predicted came to pass. It's just that independantly, things they didn't predict made the invasion not work. If I say we shouldn't go to dinner downtown because we're going to be robbed, and we don't get robbed but we do get food poisoning, was I "right"? Only in some trivial sense. Food poisoning and robbery are completely unrelated, so my belief that we would regret going to dinner was validated only by random chance. Yet, the incident will probably increase my confidence in my prediction abilities, even though my prediction was 100% wrong.

I...huh? R. Porrofatto in the comments over at TBogg gives it the old college try:

It's a variation of this, which is all the rage in liberal hawk land: Those who were pushing for the invasion of Iraq were wrong but for all the right reasons. Those opposed to the war were right but for all the wrong reasons. Get it?

Moreover, being wrong was the right thing to be at the time, so anyone opposed to the invasion was irrationally refusing to be properly misled.

Finally, those who turned out to be right about the war are most decidedly the wrong kind of people, so the right people can ignore them now, just like they did then.
ebonlock: (Monarch)
Mikey wins comment of the year and it's only the middle of January:


I dunno. Is it just me? I’m tired. Tired of going over the same ground, again and again. Tired of mindless syncophantic creatures slinging the same crap over the same transom day in and day out. Maybe they’ve outlasted me. There’s just no way to make them live in reality, respond to real events and require real knowledge.

How long are we going to have to keep responding to the same mindless drivel? At what point will we no longer have to respond seriously to the same idiocy we were subjected to almost four years ago? Why is it that political blogs, an exciting and democratizing advance in public discoourse, have turned into some kind of low IQ Groundhog Day?

I’m tired of it. The facts are in. I no longer want to banter with cretins and mongoloids over the criminality, cruelty and blatent illegality of Iraq, Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo. A long time ago I learned the futility of getting up every morning and grinding my face against the same brick wall. And while we piss on each other, arguing about how many WMDs can dance on the head of a pin, people are dying, real people, not Aces and Drudges and O’Reillys and mikeys.

Honestly. Please. Is there a way to move this discussion forward? Must it remain stuck in 2003? Can we stipulate to something, ignore a few idiots, try to get most of the people, for a few precious minutes, talking about something important? I’m old, tired, sick, and working on drunk. But I’m just not sure what all this leads to, y’know? Talk about fiddling while Rome burns, Mister Nero. It’s like we’re complicit in a way. By engaging in nonsense rhetoric while they end civilization on our watch, we seem to be letting the Rodeo Clowns of the Apocalypse get everybody’s attention on the shiny pony of 2003. And no, I have no idea what to do about it. But I’m ready to desert, or surrender, or something equally humilliating, because I just don’t seem to be making a contribution here…

ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
The Editors respond to this odious Jacob Weisberg piece with what can only be described as genius:

Ah, the soft bigotry of low expectations. You could invade the greater Tigris/Euphrates region at any point in human history, and the end result could be a peaceful, functioning Iraqi state at a tolerable cost. I know of no physical law which would prevent it. You get lucky, you work smart, and anything is possible, right? You could invade Sweden tomorrow, re-name it “Iraq”, and have yourself a marvelous, if slightly Nordic, Iraqi state. Heck, you could have left the whole mess alone four years ago, and you would have had a relatively peaceful, functioning, pain-in-the-ass Iraqi state (and by the standards of Iraq today, it was practically Sweden) at the extremely tolerable cost of nuthin. This was a very do-able, pretty well un-fuck-up-able plan. Funny story about that.
So, again, if we decide to ignore the fact that Kosovo had a coherent justification, and Iraq didn’t, then yeah, the primary remaining difference is that the Kosovo war was not run by total morons, a staffing decision which everyone outside the Bush administration agrees was wise. And so, abracadabra, all serious persons approve of Kosovo and distain Iraq. But notably absent from Weisberg’s list of recent wars is Afghanistan, because it really shows the pointlessness of this entire exercise. If we ignore the reasons for things, the primary difference between Iraq and Afghanistan is, well, not a whole lot. Afghanistan is not on its way to peace or functionality any more than Iraq is. But while the conditions in both countries are similarly awful, it is generally agreed that Afghanistan - while totally fucked up in execution - is not a strategic failure, because the justification for the war was clear, and, by these clear standards, an (incomplete) victory was achieved. Meanwhile Iraq has morphed from a mission with a surplus of grand goals into this desperately muddled hunt for ponies. Now, wars often end up having evolving goals, but when the justification for the war ends up becoming completely exinct, Darwin would say this says something about the fitness of these ideas. This seems like a topic for discussion.
ebonlock: (Brock pissed)
If you haven't been following the Jamil Hussein story over the past few weeks there's a great roundup of the pertinent facts here:

BAGHDAD AP, Jan. 4 — The Interior Ministry acknowledged Thursday that an Iraqi police officer whose existence had been denied by the Iraqis and the U.S. military is in fact an active member of the force, and said he now faces arrest for speaking to the media.

Ministry spokesman Brig. Abdul-Karim Khalaf, who had previously denied there was any such police employee as Capt. Jamil Hussein, said in an interview that Hussein is an officer assigned to the Khadra police station, as had been reported by The Associated Press.

The captain, whose full name is Jamil Gholaiem Hussein, was one of the sources for an AP story in late November about the burning and shooting of six people during a sectarian attack at a Sunni mosque.

The U.S. military and the Iraqi Interior Ministry raised the doubts about Hussein in questioning the veracity of the APs initial reporting on the incident, and the Iraqi ministry suggested that many news organization were giving a distorted, exaggerated picture of the conflict in Iraq. Some Internet bloggers spread and amplified these doubts, accusing the AP of having made up Husseins identity in order to disseminate false news about the war…

And the best part was that the bloggers, for reasons completely unknown to a member of the reality based community, actually were listened to when they started flinging their poo at the AP. But the best part, the absolute crown jewel of the entire affair is that the poor bastard who made the mistake of actually telling the AP reporters the truth about the immolation of six Sunnis, is now being threatened with imprisonment for committing no crime whatsoever. I would like to find some comfort in the fact that the old axiom "the truth will out" actually does still apply, even in today's world, but the mental image of this guy turning up as a body on the street with drill holes in his head is making it very hard.


Jan. 4th, 2007 03:02 pm
ebonlock: (Monarch)
Keith Olbermann on the subject of sacrifice:

If in your presence an individual tried to sacrifice an American serviceman or woman, would you intervene?

Would you at least protest?

What if he had already sacrificed 3,003 of them?

What if he had already sacrificed 3,003 of them — and was then to announce his intention to sacrifice hundreds, maybe thousands, more?

This is where we stand tonight with the BBC report of President Bush's "new Iraq strategy" and his impending speech to the nation, which it quotes a senior American official, will be about troop increases and "sacrifice."[...]

Click the link to read/watch the rest.


Jan. 2nd, 2007 11:43 am
ebonlock: (Tinkerbell)
You know back when I had cable a few days ago I saw clips of the Hussein execution on all the news channels (though with a particularly ghoulish glee on FOX), and flipped past them as quickly as I could. I saw no reason to participate in the bread and circuses aspect of all of this nonsense, it's not like his death will serve any real purpose. But I had to admit I was curious how this whole thing was playing out to the Iraqis themselves, thankfully Riverbend
answers that question:

It's official. Maliki and his people are psychopaths. This really is a new low. It's outrageous- an execution during Eid. Muslims all over the world (with the exception of Iran) are outraged. Eid is a time of peace, of putting aside quarrels and anger- at least for the duration of Eid.

This does not bode well for the coming year. No one imagined the madmen would actually do it during a religious holiday. It is religiously unacceptable and before, it was constitutionally illegal. We thought we'd at least get a few days of peace and some time to enjoy the Eid holiday, which coincides with the New Year this year. We've spent the first two days of a holy holiday watching bits and pieces of a sordid lynching.

America the savior… After nearly four years and Bush's biggest achievement in Iraq has been a lynching. Bravo Americans.

And Juan Cole points out:

Saddam: The death of a dictator
Through the bumbling of the U.S.-backed regime, justice becomes revenge, and a despot becomes a martyr.

By Juan Cole

Dec. 30, 2006

The tribunal also had a unique sense of timing when choosing the day for Saddam's hanging.
It was a slap in the face to Sunni Arabs.
This weekend marks Eid al-Adha, the Holy Day of Sacrifice, on which Muslims commemorate the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his son for God.
Shiites celebrate it Sunday.
Sunnis celebrate it Saturday –- and Iraqi law forbids executing the condemned on a major holiday.
Hanging Saddam on Saturday was perceived by Sunni Arabs as the act of a Shiite government that had accepted the Shiite ritual calendar.
ebonlock: (Monarch)
Jonah Goldberg has been nicknamed the Doughy Pantload for oh so many reasons, and he yet again lives up (or down) to the nickname in his latest steaming pile of feces that passes for a newspaper column:

Iraq needs a Pinochet

Now consider Chile. Gen. Pinochet seized a country coming apart at the seams. He too clamped down on civil liberties and the press. He too dispatched souls. Chile's official commission investigating his dictatorship found that Pinochet had 3,197 bodies in his column; 87% of them died in the two-week mini-civil war that attended his coup. Many more were tortured or forced to flee the country.

But on the plus side, Pinochet's abuses helped create a civil society.

Forgive me but wasn't our final rationalization for having leapt headfirst into the moral and military disaster that is Iraq, that we were just being decent sorts trying to save the Iraqi people from a brutal dictator? I mean that is still the current justification, right? So now we want to replace Hussein with...Pinochet. *headdesk*

My favorite comment on the TBogg post on this:

One train is definitely running according to schedule: the Moral Relativism Express. All aboard!

Remember how the Big Idea Bush was so bold as to advocate was the transformative power of human freedom, accept no substitutes? Good times, good times.


ebonlock: (Default)

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