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Yasser on his deathbed?
Today's Headlines
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Oldest American dead at 114 years. Dumbest American Interviewed By Arab News
The US Embassy in Saudi Arabia yesterday issued a warning that "known terrorist operatives" have been taking note of areas often visited by Westerners in the Kingdom and urged Americans to be more vigilant about their security.
Why are they issuing a warning? This is obvious.
"Recent information has come to the embassy's attention that known terrorist operatives in Saudi Arabia have reference material identifying popular trails and campsites in Saudi Arabia often used by Westerners," the embassy said in an advisory posted on its website.
Everybody knows this. Saudi Arabia has been unsafe since the last round of bombings.
Arabia's been unsafe since before it was Soddy...
Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal said last week authorities had arrested more than 500 "suspected terrorists" since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the United States.
It's still not safe, and we refuse to come back.
That 500 figure doesn't include the "known Bad Guys" who're checking out the infidels...
"The latest warning is very scary," Michael Burns, 34, an American living in the Kingdom, told Arab News.
Wait a minute. Why is this guy still living there? Here we have an example of the type of bonehead that proves that the dummies in slasher flicks are based on actual Americans.
"Don't go in there! Do not go in there!"
"Argh!" [CHOP!]
"She went in there."
"I was at a business function today that was mostly Western expatriates, and it's unnerving thinking that this place could be a target."
Yeah, its almost like you shouldn't be there for business purposes anymore. How much is money worth to you once they blow your arms and legs off?
But Bill Graston, 37, a US civil engineer in Jeddah, has become desensitized to such warnings: "This is nothing new; life goes on," he said.
"At least until it stops. Abruptly."
Oh no. There's two of you. Bill is a facilitator of international terrorism. By staying in the target zone for non-essential functions, Bill encourages the status quo. If Bill chose to leave, the jehadis would be forced to shoot each other until order was restored. Bill, get a clue. Life only "goes on" if they don't shoot you through the head or otherwise remove you from the gene pool.
The British Embassy's press officer Nick Abbot said such warnings should be taken seriously. "We are consistently advising people to be cautious. We believe there might still be a possible threat," he said.
Geeetttt oooouuuutttt. So many flies.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 2:58:05 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  This is of course complete nonsense. The oldest American can't be dead or he wouldn't be the oldest American... rrrright????
Posted by: True German Ally || 10/07/2003 15:02 Comments || Top||

#2  The oldest American can't be dead or he wouldn't be the oldest American.
Well, she was until she kicked the bucket, the day after her 90-year-old daughter died. Sounds like she belongs in our family - I have SIX living nanogenarians that are part of my family tree - three on each side. BTW, I knew a woman in Louisiana that claimed to have been born in 1856. She told me this in 1963, and lived at least three years after that. Those are the kind of genes to wish for!
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/07/2003 19:17 Comments || Top||

My great-gandfather died at 101 falling while replacing his roof.
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 20:05 Comments || Top||

#4  But American corporations pay VERY well if you work in Soddy Arabia don't they? To make up for the fact that you're in a scary third world country that would love to see you killed. .com--you're take on this? all my info is 2nd hand
Posted by: Not Mike Moore || 10/07/2003 20:45 Comments || Top||

European and Moroccan News Roundup
Just a couple of articles of interest, from the Telegraph. All EFL.

Plans for separate EU military HQ 'dropped'
Germany, France, Belgium and Luxembourg - dismissed by British officials as the "Chocolate Four" - have dropped plans to create a separate military headquarters for the European Union, Germany said yesterday. [T]hey have retreated after meeting strong resistance from more pro-American European countries, led by Britain, Spain and Italy. Instead of having a separate headquarters, Britain has proposed an EU military planning "cell" within Nato. Other ideas include teams of "mobile" EU planners who could operate from national headquarters. The creation of a separate headquarters would have separated the EU's "rapid reaction force" from Nato, destroying an agreement with America that the force would be "anchored" within the transatlantic alliance.

Sanctions loom as EU find French in breach
Perfidious Gaul's still at it.
Risking the worst crisis since the launch of the euro, Brussels is to rule tomorrow [Wednesday] that France is in reckless breach of borrowing limits fixed by the Maastricht Treaty. The European Commission is in no mood to show mercy after Paris ignored a deadline last Friday to show that it is taking "effective" action to bring its budget deficit below 3pc of GDP, or face sanctions. The EU ultimatum, agreed by finance ministers last June, had full legal authority. A spokesman for Pedro Solbes, the economics commissioner, said it was "quite clear" that France was making no serious effort to abide by Treaty rules designed to ensure the long-term viability of the euro. The commission is still fuming over comments by Jean-Pierre Rafarrin, the prime minister, that French growth was not going to suffer in order to satisfy "accounting equations of some office or other in some country". It will decide over the next two weeks whether to press for the "nuclear option" of full sanctions against France, which could reach [euro] 7.5 billion in fines. Brussels forecasts that the French deficit will reach 4pc this year, yet France is pressing ahead regardless with tax cuts worth 0.5pc of GDP and a major programme to build new aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines, and fighter jets.

Mr Raffarin is hoping to stave off sanctions by invoking a murky let-out clause exempting states from the deficit limit in "exceptional circumstances". But special pleading is unlikely to wash with EU finance ministers who will make the final decision on France's fate in November. The Dutch finance minister, Gerrit Zalm, has threatened to go to the European Court unless France is punished. "We gave up the sovereignty of our own currency because we had a very good treaty. If this treaty is not applied, then we are in serious trouble," he said. The French may have to rely on the Germans to block sanctions.
Is that going to happen, TGA?!
Berlin is also in breach of the Pact, though it has made the right noises and tightened fiscal policy just enough to keep the Commission at bay. But the German government is itself deeply divided. Hans Eichel, the finance minister, is afraid that discipline will disintegrate altogether in the euro-zone if Germany fails to take a lead now. And it was Berlin that imposed the Pact in the first place. But Chancellor Gerhard Schröder has so far shown he views the Franco-German partnership as paramount.

Pupils thrown out of window
Or: Why Morocco gets it better than most Muslims states - they're taught the concept of cause and effect at an early age.
Two Moroccan schoolboys were injured yesterday when their woman teacher threw them out of a first-floor classroom window for being too noisy. One, aged nine, was taken to hospital in Casablanca with a broken shoulder and head injuries. The other, aged 10, was only slightly hurt. An education official said the teacher had warned the pair she would throw them out. "They did not listen. They should have," he said.
Unassuming Fatima's mysterious ability to instill discipline in her classes was the subject of many reverential conversations in the staff room...
I'd like to see a few of these Moroccan 'education officials' employed in the UK.
Posted by: Bulldog || 10/07/2003 6:52:14 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Seems like she could have shot for the middle ground somewhere in between letting them get away with it and throwing them out the 2nd story window. I won't second guess her, though, maybe they wer passing notes behind her back too.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/07/2003 19:17 Comments || Top||

#2  "a major programme to build new aircraft carriers"

I thought they had achieved perfection with the deGaulle.
Posted by: Matt || 10/07/2003 19:28 Comments || Top||

#3  The commission is still fuming over comments by Jean-Pierre Rafarrin, the prime minister, that French growth was not going to suffer in order to satisfy "accounting equations of some office or other in some country".

A there you have it. Marianne whoring again.
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 20:11 Comments || Top||

#4  That's at least two young fellows who're going to grow up with a respect for women...
Posted by: Fred || 10/07/2003 20:23 Comments || Top||

#5  Germany, France, Belgium and Luxembourg - dismissed by British officials as the "Chocolate Four" - have dropped plans to create a separate military headquarters for the European Union, Germany said yesterday

-the "Chocolate Four" huh? That's pretty good. I got a Salty One they can lick.

One, aged nine, was taken to hospital in Casablanca with a broken shoulder and head injuries.

-next time he'll know to tuck and roll.
Posted by: Jarhead || 10/07/2003 21:49 Comments || Top||

#6  See what happens when the womenfolk aren't properly suppressed...
Posted by: Tresho || 10/08/2003 1:19 Comments || Top||

Fifth Column
Muslims discover America, Film at 11.
Editorial in the Charlotte Observer by Jibril Hough, president of the Charlotte North Carolina chapter of the Islamic Political Party of America rewrites history. Hat tip to LGF, EFL:
It is important for the American public to know that although this political movement by Muslims may be somewhat new, Muslims have been a part of the fabric of this society, in some fashion, since before Columbus. Muslim explorers visited the West Coast long ago. Arabic writings have been found in some caves in California. The name "California" comes from the Arabic word calif, meaning ruler or leader.
I'll bet Grey Davis has a bejeweled turban in his closet.
The Declaration of Independence possesses Islamic concepts. Also, 30 percent to 40 percent of the Africans who were enslaved, kidnapped and brought to this country were Muslims.
Really, you mean the Muslim Arabs were enslaving, kidnapping, and selling their Muslim brothers?
Some of these built the U.S. Capitol building. The descendants of others were lynched and attacked as they fought to gain the right to vote and for self-determination.
Since Sept. 11, 2001, Muslims have seen many changes in the place we call home. Our civil/religious liberties have been attacked by the likes of the so-called Patriot Act.
We all remember watching as the muslims were arrested and marched into those camps in Montana. Right?
This, coupled with the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and the continued unbalanced policy towards Israel and Palestine, gives Muslims many reasons to become more politically active -- as well as exercising our right to vote as we look towards an American "regime change" in 2004.
Jihadis for Dean!
Posted by: Steve || 10/07/2003 11:27:50 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6473 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The name "California" comes from the Arabic word calif, meaning ruler or leader No you asshat, it didn't. You didn't even spell Caliph correctly.
Early in the sixteenth century, Spanish writer Garcí Rodríguez Ordóñez de Montalvo published a book called Las Sergas de Esplandián (The Exploits of Esplandián). One of the characters in this fantasy was Calafía, the queen of California, "more beautiful than all the rest."
Montalvo described this mythical California as an island inhabited solely by black women who lived "in the manner of Amazons."
Historians assume that Montalvo's novel was known to the Spanish explorers who first sailed along the coast of the Baja California peninsula in the early 1500s. Apparently the explorers named the peninsula "California" after the mythical island in the novel. Hernán Cortés, the conqueror of the Aztec empire, reported in 1524 that he expected to find an island of Amazons along the northwest coast of Mexico.
Montalvo's novel includes these words: "Know ye that on the right hand of the Indies there is an island called California, very near the Terrestrial Paradise and inhabited by black women without a single man among them and living in the manner of Amazons. They are robust of body, strong and passionate in heart, and of great valor. Their island is one of the most rugged in the world with bold rocks and crags. Their arms are all of gold, as is the harnesses of the wild beasts which, after taming, they ride. In all the island there is no other metal."
Posted by: Yosemite Sam || 10/07/2003 11:37 Comments || Top||

#2  Interesting story Yosemite Sam, I hadn't heard that and it sounds more credible than the version I'd heard growing up.

I'd heard California came from Caliph (I don't remember where I heard it) but the connection was not that Arabs had gotten to California but that Spain had once been Islamic controlled and Caliphornia stuck in the language as the land of peace or something. Of course this doesn't really make sense since the Spanish were not likely to look fondly on the time of the Caliph when they'd just kicked Islam out of Spain.
Posted by: Yank || 10/07/2003 12:18 Comments || Top||

#3  and of course, "Los Angeles", "San Jose", "Santa Barbara", "San Francisco", "San Diego" were all named for.....um...Mohammed's ..uh.....girlfriends,... yeah, that's the ticket
Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 13:19 Comments || Top||

#4  This sounds like the same school of thought that proclaimed the ancient Egyptians flew gliders and had discovered storage batteries, pregnancy tests and evolution. http://www.csicop.org/si/9111/minority.org
Posted by: Not Mike Moore || 10/07/2003 13:24 Comments || Top||

#5  Frank - Coffee Alert!!!
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 13:45 Comments || Top||

#6  Jihadis for Dean! FUCK YOU

we do not need to fucking Jihadis in America - if you do come expect to meet Mr.Ashcroft -

Posted by: Dan || 10/07/2003 13:49 Comments || Top||

#7  Arabic writings have been found in some caves in California.

Yeah, and people claim to have found Phoenecian writing in New England, along with Oggham, cuniform, and Egyptian hieratic -- sometimes on the same stone. Then there are the Romans that supposedly settled near Tucson, the Phoenecian settlement in southern Illinois, and, of course, the Israelite civilization of south-central Ohio.

Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/07/2003 13:55 Comments || Top||

#8  Yosemite Sam is right. The only Arabic thing about it is that Montalvo used a Moorish sounding name for the queen.

"Now I wish you to know about the strangest thing ever found anywhere in written texts or in human memory. […] I tell you that on the right-hand side of the Indies there was an island called California, which was very close to the region of the Earthly Paradise. This island was inhabited by black women, and there were no males among them at all, for their life style was similar to that of the Amazons. The island was made up of the wildest cliffs and the sharpest precipices found anywhere in the world. These women had energetic bodies and courageous, ardent hearts, and they were very strong. Their armor was made entirely out of gold—which was the only metal found on the island—as were the trappings on the fierce beasts that they rode once they were tamed. They lived in very well-designed caves. They had many ships they used to sally forth on their raiding expeditions and in which they carried away the men they seized and whom they killed in a way about which you will soon hear. On occasion, they kept the peace with their male opponents, and the females and the males mixed with each other with complete safety, and they had carnal relations, from which unions it follows that many of the women became pregnant. If they bore a female, they kept her, but if they bore a male, he was immediately killed. The reason for this, inasmuch as it is known, is that, according to their thinking, they were set on reducing the number of males to so small a group that the Amazons could easily rule over them and all their lands; therefore, they kept only those few men whom they realized they needed for their race not to die out."

I will refrain from further comments about the Californian women of today :-)
Posted by: True German Ally || 10/07/2003 14:12 Comments || Top||

#9  Once the Mexicans seize California, will the jehadis declare holy war to liberate their property?
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 15:25 Comments || Top||

#10  Spanish is a language who has a lot of arab-derived
words (eg alcalde, the major, derives from al caid, the boss) specially such as is spoken in Andalucia.
Some names in places discovered by the Spanish are derived from places in Spain, this makes for several
of them being derived from the Arabic (Guadalajara "River of the stone", other people told me it meant "River of sh.t". Guadalupe "River of").
But if you had suggested to one of the Conquistadores that there was something Islamic
about the names he would have killed you. :-)
Posted by: JFM || 10/07/2003 15:31 Comments || Top||

#11  "The Declaration of Independence possesses Islamic concepts."

Absolute garbage. The Declaration of Independence comes out of the ideals of the Enlightenment, a European invention that NEVER found sway in the Muslim world.

This sounds like the old joke about the Russian who takes credit for inventing everything.

I mean what religion doesn't purport to believe in the basic principles found in the Declaration. Big deal. How has that religion BEHAVED when it's come down to implementing those ideals?

Pure crapola.

Posted by: R. McLeod || 10/07/2003 16:25 Comments || Top||

#12  Yes, I vaguely rememember the story of the Native American Muslims rowing out in their suicide canoes to blow the Mayflower out of the water. I belive that makes Plymouth, MA the 273rd most "Holy Place in Islam"...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/07/2003 19:03 Comments || Top||

#13  There's so much of this type of PC/Revisionist rubbish around; especially in the urban high schools I used to work in, e.g. Cleopatra was black, the US Constitution was "stolen" from the Iroquois, etc.

R.McLeod--Do you remember when the Soviets (mid-80's) claimed they'd "invented" break dancing? I swear to God, they said that.

tu3031--Plymouth..273rd holiest place LOL!!!

By the way, Everyone knows St. Brendan & the Irish discovered America!
Posted by: JDB || 10/07/2003 19:42 Comments || Top||

#14  I thought California was derived from 'Calif' meaning 'hot' and 'fornication' meaning.. well you know.... That makes California the land of hot .. you know.. :)

I also thought the Chinese discovered America first (actually the asians crossing over the landbridge did..).

And, I think Spain had a lot of moorish influence since it was conqured for a time by the Moors during the middle ages. This might explain the 'islamic' names in the spanish language.

What parts of the Declaration of Independance is Islamic? The part about 'We the people'?? Brahahahahahaha!!!
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 21:41 Comments || Top||

#15  Editorial in the Charlotte Observer by Jibril Hough, president of the Charlotte North Carolina chapter of the Islamic Political Party of America rewrites history.

-I would like to issue a fatwa against Mr. Hough for being a stupid-ass mother f*cker.

Jihadis for Dean!

-I heard Dean's proctologist found ancient runes in his ass. It was on Fox News last night.
Posted by: Jarhead || 10/07/2003 22:03 Comments || Top||

#16  Well Jarhead when you get your head outta your ass Fox (Faux) News is not an unbiased source--I'd believe Al Jizz b4 Faux News
Posted by: Not Mike Moore || 10/07/2003 23:10 Comments || Top||

#17  Well Jarhead when you get your head outta your ass Fox (Faux) News is not an unbiased source--I'd believe Al Jizz b4 Faux News.

NMM - DO YOU ACTUALLY BELIEVE THAT WAS ON FOX NEWS?? You don't have a touch of autism do you? As you obviously don't understand sarcasm, satire or irony. Also, thanx for your take on Fox vs. Al Jizz, by your logic Peter Jennings and NPR are also straight sources of info. Mike Moron.
Posted by: Jarhead || 10/08/2003 7:45 Comments || Top||

Turkish parliament OK's troop deployment
With 358 votes yes and 183 against, 2 absentees the motion to allow troop deployment passed the parliament.
Posted by: Murat || 10/07/2003 11:10:24 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  So what is your take Murat?
It seems that the US is at least leaning on the PKK and giving bribes loans. Is that fair trade for peacekeepers/police?
Posted by: Kelvin Zero || 10/07/2003 11:33 Comments || Top||

#2  Reuters reports that the Governing Council in Baghdad is opposed to this--or any deployment from a neighboring country.
Posted by: Dar || 10/07/2003 12:02 Comments || Top||

#3  Given that many Iraqis are annoyed with all of their neighbors, excepting Kuwait as far as I know, for helping to keep Saddam in power, I'm not that surprised.
The dilemma then is whether Bremer tells the council that he knows what is best for them or lets the Iraqis decide this issue for themselves.
I think the latter will happen.
Posted by: Kelvin Zero || 10/07/2003 12:52 Comments || Top||

New Iraqi school spans chasms between religions
By Hassan Fattah Special to The Christian Science Monitor
EFL Hat tip: Brothers Judd
HILLA, IRAQ - Just outside the sprawling mosque that used to be known as the Saddam Hussein Mosque in Hilla, a somber memorial recalls the city?s dark history. On one end, an outstretched hand rises towards the sky, steel rods jutting from it to signify lost souls rising to heaven.

Just below it lie the 76 graves of unidentified victims of Mr. Hussein?s regime found in a mass grave in Hilla last May, separated by a stream from a fountain. Around the statue, scriptures from the Bible, the Torah, and the Koran offer prayers for the victim?s souls.

For the Hilla School of Religion, which took over the mosque and requisitioned the memorial, it?s meant as a dramatic statement in a town that prefers not to discuss the issue of the mass graves. Indeed, in the most unlikely of places, an unlikely school has begun raising critical questions about faith, humanity, and religion.

Founded six months ago by a Shiite scholar, the institution bills itself as the Arab world?s only school of theology, teaching Muslim, Christian, and Judaic texts. In a town full of deep-seated sorrow, the statue may best embody the school?s credo of breaking down barriers and asking dangerous questions.

"This is a school of theology, not of Islam," said Sheikh Faris al-Shareef, professor of Islamic law and philosophy at the school. "There is one thing that unites all of us: God and his prophets. With that realization, you can teach all theologies." And by discussing all theologies, many of the school?s largely Muslim leadership insist, Islam itself can be reinterpreted and rethought.

. . .

The ultimate goal, says Sheikh Farqad al-Quzwini, the school?s founder and dean of its 25 or so faculty members, is to get at answers to the vexing religious problems that left Iraq, and perhaps much of the Muslim world, in its current state.

"For 35 years, Iraqis have feared nothing but Saddam," says Mr. Quzwini, a giant man who wears the headdress of a Shiite cleric. "What?s supposed to happen now is that humanity must stop firing the bullets; the language itself has to change. We must fix the Iraqi before we can fix Iraq."
Posted by: Mike || 10/07/2003 6:32:09 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Around the statue, scriptures from the Bible, the Torah, and the Koran offer prayers for the victim?s souls."
Reading that raised goosebumps.

That and a few other things I've read lately brings-up the question:Could the disease of sanity and reason be spreading in the Muslim World?
Posted by: Raptor || 10/07/2003 7:43 Comments || Top||

#2  This has got to be one of the rarest gems you could find in any culture, much less Iraq. I only hope the place will survive the inevitable Ba'athist and jihadi backlash once the word spreads.
Posted by: Dar || 10/07/2003 11:40 Comments || Top||

#3  Mr. Quzwini is a brave man. Unfortunately, the life expectancy for brave men and women with principles in Iraq, Somalia and North Korea is not too high. Kind of contrasts with the "bravery" demonstrated by the Dixie Chicks and the like.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 12:45 Comments || Top||

#4  A rare gem indeed. But let us hope it's a seed rather than a mere gem. Seeds grow, gems just look pretty.
Posted by: Kathy K || 10/07/2003 18:50 Comments || Top||

#5  It will grow. I don't know that I would want to be the first Provost, though. Kinda like being the GM of an expansion team.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/07/2003 19:38 Comments || Top||

Diplomats at U.N. at Odds on Postwar Iraq
UNITED NATIONS (AP) - Members of the U.N. Security Council on Monday suggested changes to a U.S. draft resolution on Iraq that has been criticized for not giving the United Nations a big enough role. But the council remained divided over how to rebuild Iraq's government.
"Well Gunter, I guess we earned our per-diems today!"
Council diplomats portrayed Monday's session as a constructive exchange of ideas over the revised draft, which called for a slightly expanded U.N. role. The draft appeared headed toward acceptance until U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said last week he wants only an ``indispensable role'' for the U.N. body or no political role at all.
I'll take "no political role" for $800, Alex.
The United States will now take council members' suggestions and amendment ideas back to Washington, U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte said. Neither he nor other diplomats would detail the changes being sought. ``We've reached a time to take a brief pause for everybody to digest what had been said and see how it affected our thinking,'' said Negroponte, who is also the president of the council for the month of October.

When a reporter asked him whether the survival of the draft was at stake, he said: ``It has no implications along the lines you are suggesting, simply a pause to evaluate where we stand with respect to the draft.''
"I can say no more!"
Diplomats said the 15-member council spent Monday's session harrassing questioning the United States over the revised resolution - presented last week - that seeks help in Iraq's reconstruction. They also brought ideas on gutting improving the document after several days of consultations in their capitals, a U.S. official said.

Several council members agreed the next step - seeing what the United States brings back to the table - will be the most important for the fate of the resolution. ``The United Nations should have a larger role, a leading role in the process,'' said Chilean Ambassador Heraldo Munoz. ``We should be as clear as possible on the timetable. Those two things are very important to us.''
"And in return, of course, we offer nothing!"
A French diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that the United States did not appear ready to incorporate changes made by France and Germany, two leading opponents of the war.
Wotta brilliant deduction!
But Germany's U.N. Ambassador Gunter Pleuger said the discussions on the resolution were likely to continue but many delegates wanted the council to take Annan's criticism of the resolution into account. ``If the council is united, the political signal is stronger,'' he said after the meeting.
In a way, if we stand alone the political signal is stronger, too.
The French diplomat said that progress could be made if there was a totally new approach to the resolution, an idea that Annan has suggested and one United States is unlikely to accept. Annan wants a lead role for the United Nations if the world body were to play any political role in Iraq.
Hey! The Daily Double!™
Whether there really is room for compromise is unclear because of the fundamental differences concerning two postwar issues - when to transfer power to Iraqis and what role the United Nations should play in stabilizing and rebuilding the war-battered country.

France, along with Germany and Russia, has led the push for a quick handover of power to the Iraqis and a stronger role for the United Nations. French President Jacques Chirac had said last week he was disappointed with the latest draft. Chirac had spoken after Annan ruled out a U.N. political role as long as American and British forces are running Iraq. Annan made his views known to the council on Thursday. Annan wants the United States to hand over sovereignty within five months to an Iraqi provisional government, which could then take the two years or more the United Nations has found necessary to create a viable constitution and organize elections, a senior U.N. official said Friday.
Why don't we let the Iraqis write their own constitution?
With Iraqis in charge, Annan says, extremist attacks would hopefully diminish, other countries would be more likely to contribute troops and money and the United Nations, if asked, could help oversee the political transition to a democracy, according to the official.
With the UN in charge we'll see more boomers and dead-ender attacks.
At the heart of Annan's concern is security for U.N. staff in Iraq following two bombings at world body headquarters in Baghdad in a month that killed 22 people and injured more than 150. The secretary-general has pulled out more than 90 percent of the U.N.'s international staff, leaving only a few dozen essential people in the country.
And it ought to stay that way.
But the United States rejected Annan's recommendation, sticking instead to its agenda of having the U.S.-picked Iraqi Governing Council adopt a constitution, hopefully within six months, then hold elections six months after that. Power would be relinquished only after an elected government is installed. The U.S. draft resolution on Iraq asks both the United Nations and the U.S.-led Coalition Provisional Authority to help the Governing Council adopt a constitution, hold elections and train civil servants. It endorses a step-by-step transfer of authority to an Iraqi interim administration but sets no timetable.

Annan is willing to risk putting significant numbers of U.N. staff back in the country - but only if the United Nations is playing ``an indispensable role.'' Secretary of State Colin Powell assured Annan on Friday that the Bush administration is trying to assign the United Nations a significant role in Iraq's future.
"Marvin, I need a word that rhymes with indispensable."
"Well, Mr. Secretary, there's 'despicable'."
"That, Marvin, is why you're not Secretary of State."
"Well sir, it DOES rhyme."
"That it does, Marvin, that it does."
Posted by: Steve White || 10/07/2003 12:33:53 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I give the in-line commentary a 9.9, Steve - great work!

As for this interminable UN engagement, pfeh. Reduce funding and reduce activity - namely doing anything but vetoing idiotic resolutions that come before the UNSC. Initiate nothing, volunteer nothing, engage no one in this venue. It is corrupt and pointless and all our efforts do is give Al Guardian something to spin. The UN is an anti-World Body of asinine autocrats, boring bystanders, callow corruption, despicable despots, egregious elitists, farking French, gutless gyrators, hateful harpies, inane imitators, jackoff Jew-haters, kinky kleptomanics, lame lapdogs, misogynistic multilateralists, nattering numbnuts,obfuscating onanists, prevaricating pussies,quixotic Quislings, rabid rapists, skilled sycophants, transcendant thieves, unctuous usurpers, vaccuous vermin, waffling wimps, xenodocheionologistic xenomaniacs, yeasty yammerers, zelophobic zoilists.
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 5:30 Comments || Top||

#2  ``indispensable role’’,What a crock.The U.N.(Useless Ninneys)couldn't run away fast enoungh the first time things get rough on them.How in hell are they going to get anything done if they can't handle the pain when the going gets tough?
Posted by: Raptor || 10/07/2003 8:03 Comments || Top||

#3  New Improved Revised U.S. Resolution to the U.N. Security Council:


The UN (including France) would only surrender Iraq back to the Saddam Loyalists and/or the Jihaldist (for a price - see 'Oil for Food Program').

It is our responsibility to protect the Iraqi people now and give them a chance at freedom and democracy.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 9:18 Comments || Top||

#4  I don't think Cough-ee is part of the SC, is he? So why should his views be "taken into account"? He can sit at the back of the bus with the other General Assembly losers and STFU...
Posted by: mojo || 10/07/2003 11:45 Comments || Top||

#5  unfortunately the french can use Kofis words to sway the fence sitters - chile, Mexico, Angola, etc. Instead of France being isolated, its now got important support. Kofi really betrayed us on this one - in previous few months he had maintained some distance from the French on Iraq.

OTOH Turkish willingness to participate in Iraq really helps - we need a UNSC resolution less now, and less urgently in terms of time.

Also i think everyone is digesting the political implications of the Kay report - does this help the French (no WMDS found) or the US (lots of obvious violations of UNSC res 1441)?

Also the situation on the ground continues to evolve - US deaths steady or declining VERY slowly, but no more big bombing attacks, power back to prewar levels, etc. All this is background that effects negotiating leverage.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/07/2003 11:55 Comments || Top||

#6  The UN is an anti-World Body of asinine autocrats, boring bystanders, callow corruption, despicable despots, egregious elitists, farking French, gutless gyrators, hateful harpies, inane imitators, jackoff Jew-haters, kinky kleptomanics, lame lapdogs, misogynistic multilateralists, nattering numbnuts,obfuscating onanists, prevaricating pussies,quixotic Quislings, rabid rapists, skilled sycophants, transcendant thieves, unctuous usurpers, vaccuous vermin, waffling wimps, xenodocheionologistic xenomaniacs, yeasty yammerers, zelophobic zoilists

Nice! You got the whole alphabet!
Posted by: Atrus || 10/07/2003 14:16 Comments || Top||

#7  Members of the U.N. Security Council on Monday suggested changes to a U.S. draft resolution on Iraq that has been criticized for not giving the United Nations a big enough role.

This is all laughable. The U.S. does all the heavy lifting and the SC jerkoffs want a role "big enough"?

The only response that this deserves is an image of a big, fat middle finger.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/07/2003 16:12 Comments || Top||

Southeast Asia
ASEAN 'exploiting terror war'
That means they're doing too much, of course. This is from al-Jizz...
Human rights groups have accused Southeast Asian nations of using the so-called war against terrorism as an excuse to step up political repression and crack down against their own citizens.
"Especially the ones with turbans..."
"ASEAN governments have hardened repressive laws and justified the use of violence against innocent civilians in the name of national security and the war on terrorism," said Debbie Stothard, head of Bangkok-based ALTSEAN, a network of human rights groups. "Ironically, (this) seems to be contributing to more repression and terrorism in the region," she said. Stothard was speaking at a hotel in Bali, near the conference centre hosting the annual summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Which implies she must have some conception of what the problem is. Or that she's remarkably stoopid...
After Indonesian authorities denied them access to the main venue, non-governmental organisations from Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines decided to stage an "alternative ASEAN" nearby.
No doubt that was very effective...
Sunai Phasuk from Forum-Asia blasted the human rights record of Thailand's Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, saying his government was "a major impediment for ASEAN to truly become a regional community that promotes human rights, democracy and fairness. After decades of struggle for democracy, it has taken Thaksin less than three years to create a police state and install a climate of fear."
Thais seem not to spend a lot of time cringing in fear. Maybe they haven't noticed?
Malaysia also came under fire from Yap Swee Seng from SUARAM, a rights group based in that country, who denounced Prime Minister Mahathir Muhammad. The country "should take responsibility for the continuous deterioration of human rights in Burma as it was that regime's main sponsor for ASEAN membership," said Swee Seng.
That's pretty weak. Malaysia has its own problems. But I guess he's gotta live there, so barking about Burma's an easy hit...
Indonesian activists criticised the government of President Megawati Sukarnoputri for breaking off talks with separatists in the province of Aceh, on the northern tip of Sumatra island, and launching a military assault against them.
Just because they want to chew off a major portion of the country for their own little Islamic paradise. Tusk tusk.
At least 1200 people have died there since May, and the rights groups have complained of restricted access to the region. "Most of the victims of the war in Aceh are civilians," said Bonor Tigor of SOLIDAMOR, a Jakarta-based group.
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/07/2003 00:45 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

Home Front
Approaching 20 Year Anniversery of Largest Bio-Terrorist Attack in US History
Just a reminder on why one vial of botulinum matters.

Recent anthrax cases in Florida raised fears a biological attack on American soil was a real possibility. The reality is that such an unthinkable act did take place — right here in Central Oregon — almost two decades ago.

In a bizarre plot to take over local government, followers of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh poisoned salad bars in 10 restaurants in The Dalles in 1984, sickening 751 people with salmonella bacteria. Forty-five of whom were hospitalized. It is still the largest germ warfare attack in U.S. history.

The cult reproduced the salmonella strain and slipped it into salad dressings, fruits, vegetables and coffee creamers at the restaurants. They also were suspected of trying to kill a Wasco County executive by spiking his water with a mysterious substance. Later, Jefferson County District Attorney Michael Sullivan also became ill after leaving a cup of coffee unattended while Rajneeshees lurked around the courthouse.

Now a Deschutes County Circuit Court judge, Sullivan said it was never proved he was poisoned, but a Rajneesh doctor said he was one of the targets. Sullivan worries Americans have forgotten the lessons of the Rajneeshees. The Rajneesh attack "tells us it has happened and can happen again. But I've been thinking that we as a community and as a state have forgotten what happened," he said.

"That would be a huge and tragic mistake."

The Rajneesh bioterrorism attack has received renewed attention recently, including a chapter in a new book titled "Germs: Biological Weapons and America's Secret War." Its authors have appeared frequently on the TV publicity circuit, discussing the nation's vulnerability to germ warfare.

The strange footnote in Oregon history began when the cult moved its headquarters from India to the Big Muddy ranch in Wasco and Jefferson counties in 1981. Soon thousands of red-clad followers descended on the High Desert from around the world.

At first they seemed a benign curiosity to many Oregonians. But that changed after members took political control of the nearby town of Antelope. Along with stockpiling weapons, they obtained salmonella and other more dangerous bacterial agents from a commercial supply house.

Cult leaders plotted to take over the Wasco County Commission by sickening so many people on election day they could get their own candidates elected. State and federal health officials at first blamed poor hygiene by restaurant workers, but they later learned the cult was responsible.

The cult collapsed in 1985 after the Bhagwan was convicted of immigration fraud and deported to India, where he died in 1990. His top aide, Ma Anand Sheela, was convicted for masterminding the salmonella attack and other crimes.

A retired intelligence officer with the Oregon National Guard, Sullivan said biochemical terrorism is a threat to the United States. He urged federal, state and local authorities, as well as all civilians, to be vigilant for the rest of their lives.

"There is no short-term fix," he said. "It's a longtime obligation."

Although far from the nation's seats of government, commerce and cultural power, Central Oregon has emergency response plans for most types of terrorism. But here as elsewhere in the United States, little can be done to prevent another Rajneesh-type bioterrorism attack on open food, officials said.

"As long as any food is open to the public, unless you put armed guards around it, there's absolutely no way to guarantee its safety," said Michael Skeels, M.D., director of the Oregon Public Health Laboratory.

Skeels, however, emphasized that Oregon authorities have no reason to suspect the state has been targeted by terrorists. Since Sept. 11, federal, state and local authorities have been in the difficult position of trying to allay Americans' fears about further possible terrorism, while at the same time taking precautions against those same threats.

"A bioterrorism attack in Oregon is unlikely, but we need to be ready," said Grant Higginson, M.D., the state's top public health officer.

"If we should ever experience such an incident, it could be devastating. For that reason, we've been preparing so we can respond if a biological attack occurred."

The Oregon Health Division's "Bioterrorism Fact Sheet" said domestic water supplies would be difficult to contaminate because of security measures, the diluting power of large bodies of water, and standard filtration and treatment that kills most disease-causing agents.

Pre-packaged foods are generally safe and unpackaged food such as fruits and vegetables are generally made safe by washing them before cooking and eating, state officials said.

On Thursday, the Oregon Department of Human Services announced that state and local public health officials have plans in place to deal with the potential threat of biological and chemical terrorism. In Portland, Central Oregon and other parts of the state, preparations for a potential attack are well under way and include law enforcement, fire departments, health departments, hospitals and other agencies.

The preparations are geared more for emergency response rather than prevention in the case of bioterrorism, but "if we had a major incident involving a biologic agent, the federal government has stockpiles of antibiotics and vaccines to treat and prevent illness in at-risk populations," Higginson said. "These stockpiles can be shipped anywhere in the country in a matter of hours."

What are the chances of a small cell of terrorists being able to develop something harmful in an isolated lab? Does this answer.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/07/2003 6:08:59 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

Middle East
Profiles of Qurei's emergency Cabinet ministers
The Palestinian prime minister nominee, Ahmed Qorei, announced on Sunday an eight-member emergency Cabinet which senior officials said would not need parliamentary approval.
"Yasser said it was okay..."
Qorei initially assigned four portfolios, with the rest to be decided shortly, in a mini-Cabinet presented a day after a Palestinian Islamist suicide bomber killed 19 people in a restaurant in the Israeli city of Haifa.
I've been trying to smooth out the spelling of Qurei/Qureia/Qrei/Etc.'s name. He's got more spellings than Muammar Kudhuffy...
Following is biographical information on the key ministers:
Nasser Youssef, interior minister: A major-general and longtime ally of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, Youssef assumed control of Palestinian national security forces in the Gaza Strip and West Bank when the Palestinian Authority was established in 1994 under interim peace deals with Israel. Youssef's relations with Arafat deteriorated a few years ago and he recently criticized the Palestinian president's leadership as an obstacle to Palestinian dreams of independence, but the two are said to have mended fences.
That must have been after Yasser spit on him...

Salam Fayyad, finance minister: Fayyad, 50, is an economist, political independent and former International Monetary Fund official recruited by Arafat in a Cabinet shakeup last year under US pressure to establish financial order and transparency in the Palestinian Authority. He stayed on to serve as finance minister in the short-lived administration of Mahmoud Abbas, who resigned as prime minister a month ago after losing a power struggle with Arafat. Fayyad is backed by Washington and has credibility with Israel, which has channeled through him tax funds owed to the Palestinians. Married with three children, he has a PhD from the University of Texas.
Good, gray money man, who gets the money after it's come through Yasser...

Nabil Shaath, foreign affairs: Shaath, 65, formerly an entrepreneur and professor at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton Business School, evolved into a key adviser to Arafat and has been involved in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks since 1991. Shaath is a veteran of Arafat's Fatah movement and served as his minister of planning and international cooperation from the 1994 inception of the Palestinian Authority. That title made him unofficial foreign minister, and he formally took the foreign affairs portfolio under Abbas.
He is from a refugee family that left its home in what is now Israel during the 1948 war.
Another Yasser-yessir man, but at least he's not as bad as...

Saeb Erekat, no specified post: Erekat, 58, has a doctorate in peace studies from England's Bradford University. He taught at Al-Najah University in the West Bank city of Nablus before joining the first Palestinian delegation to Middle East peace talks in Madrid in 1991. He has participated in countless negotiations with Israel and the United States since then. An articulate, rapid-fire spokesman for the Palestinian cause and a familiar face in international television coverage of the conflict, Erekat is also a veteran of Fatah and was appointed minister of local government in 1996.
Saeb, as we all know, has no lips. He was once turned into a pillar of salt for several days...
That's only four. Wonder who the other four are?
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/07/2003 16:47 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Jpost: Speaking after Arafat's announcement Sunday, Qureia said three portfolios in the emergency Cabinet were assigned: Nabil Shaath as foreign minister, Salam Fayad as finance minister and Yousef was to be interior minister.

Qureia said the other five members of the Cabinet would be Saeb Erekat, the current chief negotiator; Nabil Abu Hummus, the current education minister; Jamal Shobaki, the current minister of local affairs; and two legislators from Arafat's Fatah movement, Abdel Rahman Hamad and Tibi.

Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 19:27 Comments || Top||

Lebanon to rank among 'very corrupt' states
Lebanon will rank as one of the "very corrupt" countries in the world and "one of the most corrupt" in the Arab region, when Transparency International releases its Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) Tuesday. According to sources who have revealed the information to The Daily Star, "Lebanon will rank in the lower half of the index and even in the lower half among Arab countries."
"... and they had to pay baksheesh big time to get that high!"
It's not really a surprise, but it is astonishing to learn Lebanon has performed so badly compared to other Arab countries. "Very few countries are more corrupt than Lebanon in the region," said the source, "and that's saying a mouthful! this shows how deep of a problem we have dug ourselves into."
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/07/2003 16:15 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

Middle East
Israel's resolve to survive
JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Buoyed by White House support for what it called Israel's right to defend itself, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said on Tuesday the Jewish state was ready to hit its enemies anywhere following an air raid deep in Syria.

Speaking at a memorial service marking the anniversary of the 1973 Middle East war, Sharon took a tough line but made no specific threats after Sunday's strike on what Israel said was a training camp for Palestinian militants.

"Israel will not be deterred from defending its citizens and will hit its enemies any place and in any way," Sharon said. "At the same time we will not miss any opening and opportunity to reach an agreement with our neighbors and peace."
"Who here wants to SURVIVE!"
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, breaking his silence on the attack near Damascus, accused Israel of trying to drag Syria and the rest of the Middle East into a wider conflict. Syria said Israeli warplanes hit a civilian site.
"Do as we say, Zionists, not as we do!"
It was Israel's deepest air raid in Syria in three decades and followed a Palestinian suicide bombing that killed 19 people in a restaurant in the Israeli port city of Haifa a day earlier.
Events like THAT are the root causes.
Sharkey ArafishYasser Arafat, facing fresh Israeli threats to "remove" him after the Haifa blast claimed by the Islamic Jihad group, swore in an emergency eight-member cabinet led by Prime Minister Ahmed Qurie, who has close ties to the Palestinian president.

Sharon adviser Raanan Gissin said Israel would judge the new cabinet by its actions but added: "In all likelihood, if it is established by Arafat it will not fight terror."
Of course not.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/07/2003 2:49:29 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

Chalabi to the UN: Wake up and smell the triumph!
In the name of God, the merciful and benevolent.

Mr. President, Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen:

I stand in front of you today representing the voice of the Iraqi citizen who has long suffered from cruelty within and outside his homeland. Those within his country have inflicted on him the worst kinds of torture: they have attacked his honour, betrayed his family, humiliated him, enchained him and thrown him into miserable wars. His brothers and friends in the region not only maintained silence, ignorance and blindness toward his catastrophe, they also criticised him and shamed him the day he dared raise his voice. And throughout the world, those that stood to benefit scrambled to trade and work with his torturer.
"You know who you are, Jack the Weasel and Vlad!"
Very few spoke the truth and embraced it. Very few turned to the catastrophe of this fellow human being and declared that he was a victim. To our calls we heard nothing. So the Iraqi remained lost and persecuted twice over, first from the injustice of the sword with which the dictatorial regime attacked him at home, and then from the injustice of the criticism, a more painful affliction, from those outside. But the Iraqi did not give up, rather he was persistent and patient and he continued his struggle with his thoughts, words and actions to achieve liberation, the. foremost ideal that he has always yearned for.

I stand today before you expressing to you as much as possible the voice of this Iraqi individual, declaring with him and for him the end of silence. I ask you all to listen to him, one by one.

I come today to present you with four essential truths and to demonstrate through these truths two fundamental rights.

The first truth that I begin with is that Iraq's long dark night has been ended. The bitter experience of humiliation, pain and suffering that Iraqis have endured for more than three decades has ended. It ended with Saddam Hussein fleeing, along with his cronies and with the collapse of the symbols that they had erected in Baghdad and throughout Iraq.

As for the second truth, it is that the liberation of Iraq, and what happened is indeed liberation, could not have been achieved without the determination of President George W. Bush and the commitment of the Coalition. At the forefront are the United States of America and Great Britain. If today we hear the voices of those in doubt of the intentions of the American and British governments in undertaking this liberation, we invite them to go and visit the mass graves, to visit the dried up marshes, to visit the gassed city of Halabja, to examine the list of the missing whose very right to live was taken away from them by the regime.

The third truth is that the liberation came as an embodiment of a universal national Iraqi will. It came as a result of the vigorous efforts undertaken by the Iraqi opposition to Saddam Hussein's regime during many long years, when hundreds of thousands of martyrs were sacrificed. The martyr Ayatollah Muhammad Bakr alHakim and his companions were not the last to be sacrificed, may God's mercy be upon them. They added another page to the register of Iraqi bravery on August 29th, the day of the Iraqi martyr. Nor was the martyr Akila al-Hashemi, who would have been in this chamber today, spared from death.

There is no doubt for us to confirm that removing Saddam's regime is the culmination of a national Iraqi will that insisted on removing the nightmare from the chest of the nation. And from here stems the fourth truth, that the fall of the regime is only a beginning for the birth of a new Iraq. This birth that so many faithful Iraqis have prepared for, both in Iraq and abroad, is now ready.

Today, in Iraq we are facing a unique experience. What will prove our success is the will for good, for development and for freedom to spread and flourish. I stand here today to confirm that we in Iraq will not accept anything but success. Iraqis are capable of success and want success. We will not allow a gang limited to mercenaries and terrorists to deprive a person, a society and a nation from a bright tomorrow.

The land of the two rivers, the cradle of civilisation in Sumer, Akkad, Babylon and Assyria, the land of peace, the land of the Caliphate and the house of wisdom, the home of Hammurabi's code and the depository of continuous knowledge, literature, poetry and intellectual achievement depends first and foremost on its human resources before its natural and oil resources. Based on this human wealth, Iraq can achieve a renaissance transporting it from the grips of totalitarianism and fear to stability, prosperity and forgiveness. What the international community puts into Iraq will be returned in multiples. Put your confidence in Iraq, take from it stability and prosperity and you will see it spread to the region and the entire world.

The Iraq that we want is the Iraq of the brilliant individual. More than sixty percent of Iraq's population is below the age of 20. Our first priority in preparing them for the 21st century is to give them cultural and educational values that will allow each one of them to bring out his dignity and self-respect.

In the previous period, in Iraq as in other nations that suffered from the worst ideologies of the twentieth century, the individual was suppressed by the masses, the masses by the revolution, the revolution by the party, and the party by the leader. The result is that the human being is subsumed under continuous layers of oppression that obliterate his individualities, making him an object for consumption in defense of the nation and the economy in the name of the revolution or to be sacrificed for the leader. Today we confirm that the concerns of Iraqis are no different from those of all others in the world. Tomorrow's Iraq must embark by acknowledging the individual citizen as the basis of sovereignty and the starting point for legislation. The rights of the individual person are basic rights, and the rights of the group only derive from this.

Iraqis like others insist on their rights for Dignity, Freedom, Justice and Peace. Asserting these rights is the foundation for tomorrow's Iraq. The dignity of a human being in Iraq will be protected without exception, without consideration for social status, political position and economic situation. We will not give away the dignity of an accused even if convicted guilty. We begin with dignity because the previous regime worked to convince the Iraqi that his dignity is an endowment from the ruler. We confirm today that the dignity of the nation stems from the dignity of each citizen in it.

As with dignity, so too freedom. Freedom is not a gift from the ruler and the state. It is a principle, a basis and the essence of a human being. Responsible freedom that does not impinge upon the freedom of others is the core of the social contract. Despite the excesses that outsiders and infiltrators have inflicted, with the fall of the repressive regime, Iraqis have proven to themselves that freedom is not chaos.

As is the individual's instinct for freedom, so is his demand for justice. Justice will be a basic tenet that ensures the neutrality and independences of the judiciary. The previous regime took away justice, making the apparatuses of the state means of repression and control.

Last but not least, and after wretched wars that took people's lives and destroyed nations and created catastrophes in their wake, the new Iraq will abide with a new defensive policy whose pillar is peace. Iraq will be an activist for peace for the region and the world.

We have mentioned as the first of these fundamental principles, Dignity, Freedom, Justice and Peace because they represent the basis for a political future. The new Iraq will certainly uphold all human rights, starting with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including of course the right of man to life, property and the pursuit of happiness.

We take responsibility that Iraq in its legislation and laws will be equally just to its entire people. No person is above the law; indeed there will be no distinction on the basis of religion, sect, race, language, ethnicity, gender, class or tribe. The previous regime has dug deep into these divisions. As for the new Iraq, it will rely on justice and fairness.

The Iraqi woman is capable of achievement, excellence and generosity of spirit. She can take on all responsibilities in the nation. It is the duty of the society and the state to remove additional burdens blocking her way.

The constant dialogue required between the Iraqi citizen and the state that represents him and serves him will be on the basis of an honest, democratic and representational system. This system stands on the principle of separation of powers and upholds elections as the as the ultimate arbiter. We are not concerned simply with democratic appearances, but more so the safety of the political system as the embodiment of the democratic spirit. The pillars of this system are first, a separation of powers, by writing a constitutional framework that ensures non-interference between the judicial, legislative, executive powers. This forms a sound basis for each to oversee the other. Second, ensuring accountability, starting with the above mentioned supervision and going through elections that form the main entry of the individual in participation in politics and finally arriving at empowering civil society through the free press, unions and independent institutions. These will take the role of monitor, critic and pursuer of political power in its many faces. The third pillar is to uphold transparency as a fundamental principle stemming from the fact that the source of sovereignty is the citizen. The state is there to serve him and it is answerable to him. It is his right to inquire about its affairs and it is not within the right of the state to withhold such information. Fourth is to respect the rights of the minority in relation to the majority. Here it is important to distinguish between a political majority and minority and a factional majority and minority. Political majorities and minorities are those that are exposed through the ballot box, not through population census and not through a random correlation between them. It is not in anyone's authority to demand a political right on the basis of a presumed factional majority. We do not want a political, sectarian or national allocation in Iraq. A representative, federal political system can best express the interests of all Iraqi citizens regardless of their religion, creed, ethnicity or language.

If the previous period was characterised by limiting all powers to an abusive few in Baghdad then tomorrow's Iraq will stand on the principle of local authority in the context of a federal union. Federalism in the way that Iraqis understand it now is not dividing the homeland; rather it is a means of empowerment and rehabilitation of those living in different regions to take responsibility of their affairs in their regions without constant interference from the central government. We rely on the federal system, like the democratic system, because of our clear understanding of the relationship between a state and its citizens. This relationship is not one of guardianship because the Iraqi citizen is not a minor and is therefore not in need of the state's interference in all his affairs. Our concern is that this relationship be one of care where the state is the vigilant servant of the safety of the citizen, and a relationship of nurture in some areas, especially for the youth in providing social, education and health services.

Complementing our belief in federalism, and in contrast to the nationalist excesses of the previous regime, we declare to you all that Iraq is one nation, permanent and whole. There is nothing in this declaration that reduces the continuity of Iraqis with Arabs and Muslims. This does not contradict the sentiment that many Iraqis inside have about their own culture and identity. It confirms rather, that Iraq in all its territory, from its mountains in the far north to its marshes and gulf in the extreme south, passing through its rivers, meadows and deserts is a lasting unit unable to divide. When we declare this, we not only express the opinion of most Iraqis, we consider it a principal belief.

We seek to strengthen the rule of law and institutions of governance. That is, that authority extending from the citizen is emanated not usurped through a political office. This position is upheld because of a legal basis, not because of the whims and opinions of the person holding the position. The previous regime issued many arbitrary rules and regulations based on the disposition of one man. The alternative in tomorrow's Iraq is the application of the rule of law through sanctioned legislative authority that embodies the will of the Iraqi people through an independent judicial authority and under supervision of an independent legal body.

Last but not least, we will address the relationship between religion and state in the new Iraq. Islam is the religion of the majority in Iraq; it etches out the Iraqi identity as well as the state and the nature of governance.

In any case, the great civilisational heritage and valuable cultural depository of Islamic jurisprudence is no doubt one of the assets of Iraq. We will benefit from it through a judiciary that is based on equality and pluralism. It is important for us to point out to a truth often overlooked. That the state in the previous century has used religion and taken out of it what suited the wishes of those usurping power. It negated the independence of institutions and religious centers, taking over the awgaf and imposing a religious terminology suitable to its interests at the expense of others. Religion in Iraq is one of the most important assets of the individual and of society, and we will not abandon it, neither in its juridical, intellectual or daily implications.

These are the main points of what we want for our country. Our right today from the world is to demand help and assistance, thanking all those that stood by Iraqis at their worst hour and forgiving those that did not stand with us.

It is important for all the nations of the world to acknowledge that what happened in Iraq yesterday in terms of horrors, and what is happening today in terms of reconstruction, presents a dramatic historic event. The international community must stand with Iraq in this.

This is what we want of ourselves and what we want from you on the road to a free, just and peaceful Iraq.

We want an Iraq to recognise that unity and plurality are two faces of the same truth.

We want an Iraq that returns sovereignty to the individual, citizen, human being, not to the leader.

We want an Iraq imbedded in its cultural and religious identity, but in dialogue, without compunction with the global heritage.

We want an Iraq in continuity with its past, but looking forward towards the future.

We want an Iraq that lives in peace with itself, its neighbours and the world.

May peace be upon you.

Mr. President:

I stand before this Assembly as a representative of free Iraq. To all those here who helped us in our struggle for liberation we extend our gratitude. Our liberation would not have been achieved without the determination of President, George W. Bush and the commitment of the Coalition, at the forefront of which stand the people of the United States of America and Great Britain. The Iraqis will never forget your courage and sacrifice on our behalf.
"We thank you to infinity!"
To those who stood with the dictator and who continue to question the intentions of the American and British governments in undertaking this liberation, we invite you to come and visit the mass graves where half a million of our citizens lie, come and visit the dried up marshes, come and visit Halabja where chemicals were dropped on civilians, come and examine the lists of the disappeared whose right to live was taken away from them by Saddam Hussein. And we the Iraqi people will ask you why you chose to remain silent.
 it was all about the oil and Amerikkkan hegemony
We are here today to declare that a new Iraq is born. An Iraq where dignity, justice and human rights are assured for all citizens. An Iraq at peace with its people, its neighbours and the world. An Iraq that stands ready to regain its rightful place in the international community of free and proud nations
Tell me again about the quagmire.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/07/2003 2:03:19 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6466 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Chalabi to the UN: "Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining!". Even if his credentials may be suspect I gotta admire the solid brass cajones for gettiin' in the faces of the UN flunkie-crats and dishin' some harsh truth. His stock is rising.
Posted by: Rex Mundi || 10/07/2003 14:23 Comments || Top||

#2  "[We] must embark by acknowledging the individual citizen as the basis of sovereignty and the starting point for legislation. The rights of the individual person are basic rights, and the rights of the group only derive from this."

This guy is channeling Thomas Jefferson or Ayn Rand, incredible! Fantastic! No wonder the Socialists like the French don't like him. Nothing quite so dangerous to a collective as a strident individualist.

"... suffered from the worst ideologies of the twentieth century, the individual was suppressed by the masses, the masses by the revolution, the revolution by the party, and the party by the leader. The result is that the human being is subsumed under continuous layers of oppression that obliterate his individualities, making him an object for consumption in defense of the nation and the economy in the name of the revolution or to be sacrificed for the leader."

This is the best public condemnation of collectivism I have seen in a long while. IF only our politicians would have the brass to take a stand and state the truth, boldly.

What a marvelously different voice to hear at the forefront in that region!
Posted by: OldSpook || 10/07/2003 14:54 Comments || Top||

To those who stood with the dictator and who continue to question the intentions of the American and British governments in undertaking this liberation...we the Iraqi people will ask you why you chose to remain silent.

Boy, I'd love to hear Chirac and the other worms answer this one...
Posted by: Dar || 10/07/2003 15:11 Comments || Top||

#4  A very good speech! Any chance of seeing this in American media? Didn't think so...

His brothers and friends in the region not only maintained silence, ignorance and blindness toward his catastrophe, they also criticised him and shamed him the day he dared raise his voice. And throughout the world, those that stood to benefit scrambled to trade and work with his torturer.

I wonder if he was looking stright in the French Ambassador's eyes when he said that. (Assuming that the Ambassador was there that is...).
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 15:48 Comments || Top||

#5  Ok, Chabby is a good guy. That's a great speech.
Posted by: Steve White || 10/07/2003 16:31 Comments || Top||

#6  I'll watch Peter Jennings. Should be the lead story tonight. P.O.S.
Posted by: eyeyeye || 10/07/2003 17:00 Comments || Top||

#7  OK. I'm impressed.

"And we the Iraqi people will ask you why you chose to remain silent."

I can think of several answers to this question, and not one of them is good.
Posted by: Matt || 10/07/2003 17:28 Comments || Top||

#8  Any time I see a State Dept smear of someone I take another look at them, they must've done something right and pro-American
Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 18:06 Comments || Top||

#9  eyeye,

I bet the lead story is about the 'body bag count' followed by how Arnold groped a few women 25 years ago followed by more body bags, and then the California election.... Rinse.... repeat...
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 18:07 Comments || Top||

#10  I'm beginning to have some serious respect for Chalabi.
BTW, I linked that one three days ago, where have y'all been?
I did see a little bit about his speech in the media but it was all 'local' media online (in the Podunk Press but not on CNN). Sigh.
Posted by: Kathy K || 10/07/2003 18:25 Comments || Top||

#11  How'd you find it? I just did Googled for it and got basically no hits.
Posted by: Matt || 10/07/2003 19:22 Comments || Top||

#12  I think we found the NEW Iraqi ambassador to the UN.
Posted by: Charles || 10/07/2003 19:29 Comments || Top||

#13  Kathy--You posted this Saturday? Guess I'm not the hardcore, 24/7 Rantburger I thought I was!
Posted by: Dar || 10/07/2003 19:44 Comments || Top||

#14  give me a break, this guy left the country in 1958 as i recall, he's slightly more iraqi than i am
Posted by: Igs || 10/07/2003 21:05 Comments || Top||

#15  "I stand before you as trustworthy as an American businessman named Kenneth Lay"--with the backing of the same lunatic right wing conservative ideologues that stole an election and put a Christian jihadist in the White House who has lied about weapons of mass destruction (there are none) and has corrupted the civic discourse of the United States with "You're with us or a traitor" Our Neo-Cons (Oops Rt wing Jews) will be setting the future agenda for our country and because they have more money than you whining liberals will win
Posted by: Not Mike Moore || 10/07/2003 23:30 Comments || Top||

#16  Typical stupid leftie Mikey. You didnt address a single comment, You only tried to smear the guy with repeated lies.

WTF is wrong with your mind, are you incapable of rational thought?
Posted by: Anonymous || 10/08/2003 0:18 Comments || Top||

Israeli Map Shows 'Terror Network' in Damascus
"We know where you live." That was the unmistakable message of the release by Israeli authorities Tuesday of a map pinpointing what it said were homes and offices of Palestinian militant leaders in Damascus.
AKA - target list.
The army said the map was intended to illustrate the extent of the "Terror Network in the Damascus Region." It came on the same day that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said Israel would attack its enemies "any place, and in any way." Sunday Israeli planes bombed what the Israeli military said was a training camp for Palestinian militants near Damascus, after a suicide bomb killed 19 people in Haifa. Syria said the target of the Damascus strike was a civilian site.
I thought it was a old, unused training camp?
The Israeli army map shows supposed locations of the homes of senior Hamas leaders Mousa Abu Marzook and Khaled Mashal, Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shallah and Ahmed Jibril, chief of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine -- General Command, or PFLP-GC. It also shows 10 sites in Damascus the army says are the political, military and in some cases media offices for Islamic Jihad, Hamas, Fatah and the PFLP-GC.
Boy, that's going to hurt real estate values in the neighborhood.
Hamas and Islamic Jihad sources in the West Bank and Gaza Strip said Abu Marzook, Mashal and Shallah moved between Damascus and Beirut for "security reasons."
They'll be looking for new homes this afternoon.
Syria, which has been under intense U.S. pressure to kick militant groups out of its territory, says Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other Palestinian groups maintain only media offices in Damascus. "The map is proof of the extensive presence of Palestinian terror groups in Syria," an Israeli security source said. "We said it before and we say it again, everyone that is involved in terror and endangers the lives of Israeli citizens is not immune." Sharon took a tough line Tuesday but made no specific threats. "Israel will not be deterred from defending its citizens and will hit its enemies any place and in any way," he said in a speech broadcast live from a military cemetery in Jerusalem.
"You can run, but you can't hide."
Posted by: Steve || 10/07/2003 1:17:29 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  " Is that the Syrian Presidential Palace? "

" Um, no. "
Posted by: Charles || 10/07/2003 13:52 Comments || Top||

#2  "Syria said the target of the Damascus strike was a civilian site.
I thought it was a old, unused training camp?"

PFLP donated it to the Nature Conservancy, who are using it as a home for baby ducks.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/07/2003 14:08 Comments || Top||

#3  The Israeli army map shows supposed locations of the homes of senior Hamas leaders Mousa Abu Marzook and Khaled Mashal, Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shallah and Ahmed Jibril, chief of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine -- General Command, or PFLP-GC. It also shows 10 sites in Damascus the army says are the political, military and in some cases media offices for Islamic Jihad, Hamas, Fatah and the PFLP-GC.

I would've kept this all hushed up and with the next suicide/murder bombing, dispatched aircraft with 1,000 pounders to level every single one of these targets. This in addition to mounting a synchronized commando raid to snatch Yasser from his compound.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/07/2003 14:34 Comments || Top||

Middle East
Yasser on his deathbed?
From the "Palestine International Press Centre" website. Salt recommended; English translation somewhat ragged.
Raanan Gissin, Sharon's advisor, threatened that President Arafat's days in power are "numbered."
I think he actually said "days are numbered," but go on.
Gissin stated Monday evening that the removal of Arafat is imminent. He believed that, Israel would expedite putting in effect the already decision to forcibly remove Arafat, Arab48 online edition published today. Gissin threats coincided with rumors circulated Monday in Rammallah accusing Israel of slipping venom doses to President Arafat in order to gradually poison him, Arab48 added.
Or perhaps it's the death rays! (Insert maniacal laugh here.)
Palestinian sources linked such rumors with health downhill of President Arafat nowadays, suffering influenza and dyspepsia that summons up the checkup of doctors day by day.
Or, he could just be an old guy over 70 whose lifestyle is catching up with him. Naaah, can't be; must be the venom or the death rays.
It's prob'ly me. I mumble incantations against him every night before I go to bed. And I have one of those dolls that you stick pins into...
Israel's security cabinet decided-in principle-to "remove" Mr. Arafat last month, but did not say how or when, action would be taken. Arrest, isolation, deportation, or possibly killing him [I vote for this one!] are said to be among the options. On Sunday, President Arafat also announced an emergency state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and issued a decree of forming an emergency cabinet with 8 ministers
[to replace the regular, non=emergency cabinet with 138 ministers]
due to the worsening situation and to ward off any possible strikes in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Followup, from Jerusalem Post...
Four ambulances that were seen entering Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat's compound in Ramallah on Monday afternoon triggered off rumors that he was seriously ill.
One for each arm and each leg?
Within minutes, senior officials in the compound were bombarded with phone calls from curious journalists. Arafat's spokesman, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, dismissed reports that Arafat had been taken to a local hospital. He said Arafat suffered from exhaustion and was recovering.
"It's only exhaustion. Happens to him regularly."
But another senior official said Arafat's health has rapidly deteriorated over the past two weeks. "I don't think it's the flu as some people say," he said. "The president hasn't been feeling well for some time and his health seems to be worsening."
It won't be long now. I can feel it in my bones... Or maybe my arthritis is acting up.
He said it was possible that Arafat, 74, has caught a number of viruses as a result of shaking hands and exchanging kisses on the cheek with thousands of people who came to see him over the past few weeks following Israel's decision to "remove" him.
"Success, sir! The deadly toxin has been delivered by a pair of Arab lips!"
"Good, Smedley! Very good! I must inform Number One!"
On Sunday, a pale and fragile-looking Arafat met in his office with the new PA Prime Minister Ahmed Qurei.
"Yasser! You look so pale and fragile!"
"Mahmoud! Shoot him!"
"You can't shoot me! I'm the prime minister!"
Palestinians said they have never before seen Arafat in such a condition. "You can see that he's very ill," said someone who attended the meeting. "He can hardly speak. Something bad is happening to him."
It's a deadly toxin, available only in Samoa...
Some PA officials said Arafat's decision to declare a state of emergency in the West Bank and Gaza Strip could be linked to his illness. "It's possible that he doesn't want to leave a vacuum behind," said one PA official. "He must have discussed the issue with Abu Ala [Qurei]."
"Whaddya think, Ahmed? Should I declare a state of emergency?"
"Mahmoud! Put the gun down!"
Last week, the PA summoned a team of doctors from Jordan to examine Arafat after he complained of severe abdominal pain. They concluded that he had recovered from a mild illness and only needed some rest. At first, his aides suspected that he had been poisoned. Arafat had been barfing tossing his felafel vomiting for several days. Shortly after the Jordanian team returned home, a journalist in Ramallah quoted a senior PA official as saying that "Arafat's days are numbered."
"Mahmoud! Shoot him, too!"
On Monday evening, journalists and visitors were barred from entering Arafat's compound. The decision only added to the growing speculation about Arafat's health.
I'll be oiling my ululator for the rest of the afternoon...
Posted by: Mike || 10/07/2003 12:43:05 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6489 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Jpost has a similar article caught via LGF:

Four ambulances that were seen entering Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat's compound in Ramallah on Monday afternoon triggered off rumors that he was seriously ill.

Within minutes, senior officials in the compound were bombarded with phone calls from curious journalists. Arafat's spokesman, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, dismissed reports that Arafat had been taken to a local hospital. He said Arafat suffered from exhaustion and was recovering.

But another senior official said Arafat's health has rapidly deteriorated over the past two weeks. "I don't think it's the flu as some people say," he said. "The president hasn't been feeling well for some time and his health seems to be worsening."

He said it was possible that Arafat, 74, has caught a number of viruses as a result of shaking hands and exchanging kisses on the cheek with thousands of people who came to see him over the past few weeks following Israel's decision to "remove" him.

On Sunday, a pale and fragile-looking Arafat met in his office with the new PA Prime Minister Ahmed Qurei. Palestinians said they have never before seen Arafat in such a condition.

"You can see that he's very ill," said someone who attended the meeting. "He can hardly speak. Something bad is happening to him."
Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 12:46 Comments || Top||

#2  Think they'll use the artificial gill on 'em?

Like Alaska Paul says... "The bubbler is off"
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 12:52 Comments || Top||

#3  Four ambulances? Must be one from each of his "security" services...the EMT's are prolly all brawling in the foyer...
Posted by: Seafarious || 10/07/2003 12:56 Comments || Top||

#4  Excellent, when rumors keep spreading that the king is dying, the other players will begin to think about being first in line to succeed him. This leads to making sure your rivals don't beat you to it, by giving him a little "push" when you think you are ready.

Now, where's my popcorn?
Posted by: Steve || 10/07/2003 13:05 Comments || Top||

#5  And lawn chairs, Steve. Definitely lawn chairs.
Posted by: Seafarious || 10/07/2003 13:07 Comments || Top||

#6  Set the TIVO too, so you can review it over and over
Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 13:11 Comments || Top||

#7  And your favorite adult beverage.
Posted by: Steve || 10/07/2003 13:43 Comments || Top||

#8  Don't forget the beer hats.
Posted by: Charles || 10/07/2003 13:47 Comments || Top||

#9  I'll cheerfully spit on Yasser's grave along with everyone else, but the Israelis should not kid themselves that Palestinian nationalism will go away just because it's perennial poster boy has gone to the great party congress in the sky. Nations are built on blood and iron and the Israelis have made sure that the Palestinians have gotten a steady diet of that.
Posted by: Hiryu || 10/07/2003 13:50 Comments || Top||

#10  Relax. Palestinian ambulances are only used to carry ammunition. Nothing to see here...
Posted by: john || 10/07/2003 15:12 Comments || Top||

#11  I bet his "72 Virgins" will enjoy his quivering lip!
Posted by: Yosemite Sam || 10/07/2003 15:27 Comments || Top||

#12  There are pictures of a healthy looking Yassir on the Haaratz site today (10/7) embracing the new lapdog PM. Of course, the picture could be staged.
Posted by: mhw || 10/07/2003 15:47 Comments || Top||

#13  "You can see that he's very ill," said someone who attended the meeting. "He can hardly speak. Something bad is happening to him."

Maybe it's the realization that his luck is running out. Increasing tension will have a detrimental effect on old farts...
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/07/2003 15:50 Comments || Top||

#14  "It's possible that he doesn't want to leave a vacuum behind," said one PA official.

Fine. Let him take the vacuum with him if he wants. We saw how far the Pharaohs got with their possessions in the afterlife. Also Hades is wired for 480 volts for the big zap, and not 240 VAC. Heh heh.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/07/2003 15:52 Comments || Top||

#15  Damn straight. He should take his blender, too.
Posted by: Fred || 10/07/2003 16:10 Comments || Top||

#16  And his lampshade! Dont forget his lampshade!

/Shades of 'The Jerk'....
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 17:30 Comments || Top||

#17  It's all starting to seem faintly like a Monty Python skit:

Dead collector: Bring out your dead!
Palestinian Authority Cabinet Minister: Here's one.
Arafat: I'm not dead!
Collector: What?
Cabinet Minister: Nothing.
Arafat: I'm not dead!
Collector: Here. He says he's not dead.
Cabinet Minister: Yes he is.
Arafat: No I'm not!
Collector: He isn't?
Cabinet Minister: Well he will be soon. He's very ill.
Arafat: I'm getting better!
Cabinet Minister: No you're not. You'll be stone dead in a moment.
Collector: Look, we can't start the Palestinian civil war with him like that. It's against regulations.
Arafat: I don't want to go in the ambulance!
Cabinet Minister: Oh don't be such a baby. here's your baby wipes.
Collector: I can't take him.
Arafat: I feel fine!
Cabinet Minister: Oh, do us a favor?
Collector: I can't.
Cabinet Minister: Well can you make it around in a couple of minutes? He won't be long.
Collector: No... I've got a suicide bombing to go to tonight.
Arafat: I think I'll go for a walk.
Cabinet Minister: You're not foolin' anyone, you know. Look. Isn't there something you can do?
Arafat: I feel happy! I feel happy!
(Sound of Arafat being fried by an Israeli-built death ray.)
Cabinet Minister: Oh, thanks very much.
Collector: Not at all. See you at the Intifada.
Cabinet Minister: Right.
Posted by: Mike || 10/07/2003 17:43 Comments || Top||

#18  I doubt that Arafat's death will have a noticable effect on the WOT but it will have a small effect on my life. ... I'll get a new flavor of Nigerian e-mail. From Suha with love.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/07/2003 17:54 Comments || Top||

#19  Mike M - excelllleennnttt

but you've got too much time on your hands lol
Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 18:10 Comments || Top||

#20  And his lampshade! Dont forget his lampshade!
Above all, don't forget his baby wipes!
(Yeh, I read LGF too much...)

(Mike, you owe me windex for my monitor...)
Posted by: Kathy K || 10/07/2003 18:55 Comments || Top||

#21  Looks like the IDF has The Death Ray working overtime...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/07/2003 20:33 Comments || Top||

#22  No one mentioned the dreaded and horrible [insert drum roll here] red binder? All Lizardoids know the red binder contains, uh, er, um, some really important stuff. That's why he always tries to hide it, but it's there - you can feel it...
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 21:08 Comments || Top||

#23  So whose going to start the dead pool?? I'll take this Friday, 1100-1200 EST. It would be down right un-American for someone not to make a buck off this asshole's demise.
Posted by: Jarhead || 10/07/2003 22:24 Comments || Top||

Home Front
Jed Babbin: Anomalies in the Wilson/Plame affair
National Review Online. EFL; link in original.

. . . While we occupy ourselves with the Plame name blame game, we are missing the most important elements of the Wilson affair: the anomalies.

Everyone who works for the CIA in everything having to do with intelligence or foreign governments is required to sign a secrecy agreement that provides the Agency the right to approve and censor what the employee may wish to say or write for public consumption. In Wilson's famous July 6, 2003 NYT op-ed, he said, "The mission I undertook was discreet but by no means secret. While the CIA paid my expenses, (my time was offered pro bono), I made it abundantly clear to everyone I met that I was acting on behalf of the United States government." It is unheard of for anyone to not be required to sign a secrecy agreement. So did Wilson get that article approved by the CIA?

I asked the CIA, and a very testy spokesperson refused to answer. I asked if Wilson ever signed a security agreement, and she sounded about to burst from stress, but she'd give no answer to that question either. Maybe she was just having a bad hair day. Or maybe the CIA is feeling some well-earned heat.

A senior intelligence-community source told me that no one as vocal as Wilson could possibly be bound to the usual security agreement. So Wilson wasn't required to sign one. Why? The fact that he was paid only his expenses is no explanation. That's Anomaly Number 1.

Why was Joe Wilson chosen for the Niger mission? A career foreign-service officer, he's no intelligence pro. He's not an expert on nuclear weapons, and he's sure no expert on covert purchase of WMD-related materials. He served as an "Africa expert" in the second Clinton administration, but hadn't been in Niger since he served as a flunky in our embassy there in the early '80s. He did serve — with courage — as acting ambassador in Baghdad in 1990. He had no unique or current knowledge of Niger, but he does have deeply felt political views which cannot have resulted from some recent epiphany.

Wilson worked for Al Gore as a congressional fellow in the mid-Eighties, has given money to John Kerry's presidential campaign, and believes his mission in life is to "destroy" both "neoconservatives and religious conservatives." Anyone political — which means everyone in the White House and the CIA hierarchy — must have understood the risk the president took in stating WMD as the casus belli against Saddam. Though the nuclear part of the WMD equation was never a principal part of the case for war, it was part of it. Anomaly Number 2: Why was Wilson — uncredentialed in the critical areas, and devoted to a political agenda antithetical to the president's policy — chosen for such an apparently controversial mission?

Wilson's "investigation" was patently inadequate. According to his op-ed, he made no effort to talk to the IAEA, Niger military or intelligence authorities. Dr. Hamza told me in considerable detail about a highly organized and well-financed black-market operation by Saddam's regime to buy every sort of nuclear weapons-related equipment and materials. It's not hard to suborn people with enough money, or to buy uranium and smuggle it out of places such as Niger. Over time, any amount could be smuggled out to Iraq. Anomaly Number 3: Why was Wilson's verbal report apparently taken at face value? No intelligence professional should have relied on it.

Although it's not an anomaly, no one seems to know who hired Joe Wilson for the Niger job. Reports and sources all say George Tenet didn't, and that someone well below him did. One report says that Plame recommended him. To whom, we don't know. Who chose Wilson, and why?

It's possible that Wilson's trip and report were a put-up job, intended to embarrass the president sooner or later. But that analysis overlooks Wilson's persona, his political loyalties, and his actions. I don't believe in conspiracies. But I don't believe in coincidences, either. If I were the president, I'd unambiguously support the leak investigation, and prosecute the leaker if he can be found. With equal urgency, I'd be working hard to find out why these anomalies exist. And wondering what other disagreeable surprises may be coming my way from the CIA in the next twelve months.
Posted by: Mike || 10/07/2003 12:31:11 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6474 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I did a google search yesterday on "Joseph Wilson" to see whether there were stories that included his wife's CIA connection prior to Novak's article. Reviewed the titles and dates of about half of the 2600 hits. Looks like the information wasn't in the public domain prior to the article.

It was interesting to see the date spread on the hits with peaks being in early July, late July, Mid August then the tsurinami on the last couple days of September and in to October.

Another interesting tidbit was that Joseph was a regular on American Morning with Paula Zauhn during the ramp up to the invasion. He seemed pretty even-handed about the "case for war" and didn't mention his trip to Niger.

He was chosen as an expert for interviews in January and March because he was the Deputy Ambassador to Iraq prior to the Gulf War I - which I didn't know. He was the last American official to talk to Saddam before the war and heroically harborred Western civilians in the Embasssy - defying Sadaam.

Why would you make television appearances a regular gig if your wife was a covert opperator?
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 13:00 Comments || Top||

#2  Read some more stuff on Wilson - once did a press conference while wearing a noose for a necktie to make a joke about Sadaam regime, while Wilson was still in Baghdad. Also he lived in France for a number of years and wears cufflinks.

Could be mentally unhinged.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/07/2003 23:05 Comments || Top||

U.S. visa teams set for Islamic nations
The Department of Homeland Security has decided to open special law-enforcement offices throughout the Muslim world, with agents assigned to carry out investigations of visa applicants who are suspected of ties to al-Qaida and other terrorist groups, senior Bush administration officials said on Monday.
About time.
They said permanent offices would be opened early next year in U.S. embassies and consulates in five Muslim nations that were chosen both because of the volume of U.S. visas they process and because of the regional presence of al-Qaida and other terrorist groups. The nations are Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates. Two other offices were opened in late August, without public announcement, in Saudi Arabia - one in Riyadh, the capital, and another in the commercial center of Jeddah. After the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, the State Department and the Immigration and Naturalization Service were criticized for lax visa policies that had allowed several of the suicide hijackers to enter the United States without significant scrutiny. Most INS responsibilities have since been consolidated in the Homeland Security Department. This month, under terms of the 2002 law that created the Homeland Security Department, the agency was given ultimate authority for deciding who is given a visa. Visas previously were the responsibility of the State Department.
Good, now we just have to make sure that Homeland Security really investigates these applicants.
Posted by: Steve || 10/07/2003 9:55:14 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6466 views] Top|| File under:

#1  To say State was lax on their visa policies is a gross understatement. Hello......Visa Express anyone?
Posted by: Rex Mundi || 10/07/2003 12:11 Comments || Top||

#2  Give Homeland Security all Visa programs immediately. Let's not implement systematic encouragement for Syrians to get their Visas in a country that State still controlls the program in.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 12:39 Comments || Top||

#3  Give Homeland Security all Visa programs immediately. Let's not implement systematic encouragement for Syrians to get their Visas in a country that State still controlls the program in.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 12:40 Comments || Top||

#4  "And bring your Visa card, because the consulate no longer takes Saudi Express."
Posted by: Seafarious || 10/07/2003 14:22 Comments || Top||

#5  Now the terrorists will have to enter the U.S. by way of the mexican border where we will.... oh .. wait... nevermind.....
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 16:35 Comments || Top||

#6  But wait--it was the business (Repooplican) interests that wanted all that cheap labor in here from India & PAKISTAN DUH!
Posted by: Not Mike Moore || 10/07/2003 23:34 Comments || Top||

Africa: North
Gaddafi separates from Arabs
We ran the al-Jazeera version of this story on Sunday, but what the hell? This has a bit more to it...
Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, once a devoted and energetic champion of Arab unity, announced this weekend his definitive separation from the Arabs, whom he heavily criticised.
"To hell with 'em. I'm gonna be a African..."
Standing before a group of women, in a Mediterranean villa in Syrte about 500km east of Tripoli, Gaddafi declared himself more than ever African, claiming to be "forever beyond nationalism and Arab unity."
"Yup. I'm givin' it up. Just another bad habit..."
Admittedly, Gaddafi is famous for his verbal excesses and spectacular rebuttals, but his declaration on Saturday sounded like an irreconcilable divorce from the Arabs, coming from the mouth of an ageing Gaddafi who in recent years has never given up on the ideals from his youth.
"When I was young, I thought I was gonna be an Arab Lenin. Then I thought I'd be an Arab Chairman Mao. Hell, I even wrote a Little Green Book. But now... now... I gotta be me-e-e! I gotta be me..."
When he took power on September 1, 1969, the young leader, raised in the cult of the former president, the Egyptian unionist Jamal Abdel Nasser, threw himself body and soul into attempting unity. He would court Egypt, the Sudan, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco, regardless of whether they bordered on Libya. On Saturday, he also referred to the symbolic date of September 28, 1961 which ushered in the end of the Syrian-Egyptian union which had for three years formed the United Arab Republic to better support their common agenda. "The era of nationalism and of Arab unity is forever gone. These ideas which once mobilised masses no longer have any value," he said.
"The masses yawned, en masse..."
Gaddafi called on the Popular Congress, the basic structure of the Libyan political system, to "confirm Libya's withdrawal from the Arab League," envisioned by Tripoli for months but never realised.
"Yeah. Let's get outta here and have some fun!"
"The Arab League is in the middle of giving up the ghost, and Arabs will never be strong even if they unite... They will remain content every night to watch bloody newsreels from Palestine and Iraq."
"We can do better than that. We're gonna have General Hospital and All My Children. The writing's better, and they make more sense..."
Gaddafi had some strong words for the Arabs, denying them human qualities, and publicly challenging their former policy of helping movements and political groups from Arab countries. "Libya has for too long endured the Arabs, for whom we have paid blood and money," he said, adding that as a result, his country had been "boycotted by the US and demonised by the West."
"Really, I think we should try something else for awhile..."
"In return, the Arabs joined forces with the US and Israel against Libya," he continued, as he confirmed his African orientation, viewing the continent as "a source of great force" for his country.
"I mean, we play our cards right, we could be another Belgium..."
This confession was made by an appeased leader, whose country had its international sanctions lifted after agreeing to pay $10m to the family of each of the 270 victims killed during the explosion of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988, blamed on Libyan hijackers.
"That blowin' people up stuff don't come cheap..."
And once more the top Libyan put his faith in women, deeming them "better than men and more capable."
"I mean, I really like babes!"
Gaddafi, who travels with a female security detail, called on Libyan women on October 1 to train themselves against "the enemy," and to be inspired by the women of Africa, whose situation he believes, is better than that of Eastern and Western women.
Arab unity dream theory shattered? Well a bit late, in practice Israel had done that already.
I disagree with that. Israel's been the only thing holding them together in the face of competing national interests...
Posted by: Murat || 10/07/2003 4:32:02 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The man is a buffoon who could come out and say the exact opposite tomorrow. I don't trust wacky Muslims who wear purple robes and other bizarre get ups.

Posted by: anonymous coward || 10/07/2003 5:05 Comments || Top||

#2  All true. But if he is saying the right thing now, that should be rewarded, and encouraged.
Posted by: Ben || 10/07/2003 5:38 Comments || Top||

#3  I don't agree Ben. He's had more than enough of a go. It's time he stood down.
Posted by: different anonymous coward || 10/07/2003 5:51 Comments || Top||

#4  Uh, sure thing... If Khadaffy Duck has a moment of serendipity, of illumination, wherein he finally grasps that he is and has been a terrorist asshole and suddenly chooses to cease and desist, well then, we won't send any more F-111 PaveTack missions to Tripoli. This is ample reward and encouragement for his actions, thus far. If he wants candy and flowers, well he's gonna have to do a tad more than acknowledge his assholedness as a Arab tool. Methinks a knobshine is long overdue, and I hereby volunteer to represent the US in this important rapprochement by selecting which of his bodyguards should apply this important symbolic gesture to my, uh, person...
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 6:02 Comments || Top||

#5  And when he loses an interest in being an African, maybe he can look into Mediterranean unity, perhaps a reborn Roman Empire? (With himself as Caesar, of course)
Posted by: Paul Moloney || 10/07/2003 6:12 Comments || Top||

#6  Over an hour the Turkish Parliament will vote on the sending of troops, exactly at 15:00 (timezone GMT + 2).
Posted by: Murat || 10/07/2003 6:44 Comments || Top||

#7  To Libya?? Cut the guy (Khadafi) some slack, maybe he's about to croak.
Posted by: Rafael || 10/07/2003 9:02 Comments || Top||

#8  "Libya has for too long endured the Arabs, for whom we have paid blood and money,"

This just in: Super Conducting Ribs Raise Puzzled Porker
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 9:56 Comments || Top||

#9  Khaddafy's Fembots are pretty tough, they would kick arab ass
Posted by: Frank G || 10/07/2003 11:14 Comments || Top||

#10  This switch to an Africa-Central policy is just a recognition of the fact that Lybia can't possibly be implicated in every mess in the Arab world while simultaneously stirring the pot throughout Africa.

Should we encourage Africa to be lead by Lybia or South Africa? I am getting a headache.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 11:56 Comments || Top||

#11  I'm still amazed that Egypt hasn't absorbed Libya (oil, underpopulated). After all Arab on Arab wars are acceptable to the Arabs if you just throw out Arab Brotherhood and caliph into the propoganda.The UN could be used as an after-action excuse because of Libyan meddling in subSahara Africa. The Europeans could be bought off with oil contracts, and the US couldn't side with Libya.

Adding oil to Egypts population would make them the undisputed ruler of the Arab world.Certainly Libya would be a pushover compared to Israel.It's a no-brainer from what I can see. So why hasn't Egypt gone West?
Posted by: Yank || 10/07/2003 12:28 Comments || Top||

#12  I read unsubstantiated reports that Egypt and Lybia shared a tunnel complex on their border where they were jointly developping WMD's. Probably could be tracked back to the Mossad.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 12:48 Comments || Top||

#13  In times of Saddat, Khaddafi proposed the union between Egypt and Lybia. Egypt rejected it.
Posted by: JFM || 10/07/2003 14:51 Comments || Top||

#14  So now that Muammar thinks he's "African", will he speak something other than Arabic? ;)
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/07/2003 16:17 Comments || Top||

#15  Mo will just say Arabic is language that Africans like him adopted for usage, like English, French and Portugese. Anybody read his book?
Posted by: OminousWhatever || 10/07/2003 17:54 Comments || Top||

#16  I wonder how many other countries will back out of the Arab League now? Probably zero, but we can always hope.
Posted by: Charles || 10/07/2003 19:13 Comments || Top||

#17  North Africa used to be a prosperous area in the classical age - it was the breadbasket of Rome.

Its civilization was mostly externally imposed, though. Carthage was a colony, and it was replaced by Romans, Greeks and (I believe) Vandals. Probably the Arabs, with their tribal society, had more in common with the Berbers and Libyans and similar tribes. But a tribal structure isn't the path to modern prosperity. "Pan-Arabism" is an extension of that tribal outlook. If Muammar views Libya as a nation he might be on the right track, though he shouldn't expect overnight results.
Posted by: Fred || 10/07/2003 20:15 Comments || Top||

Home Front
Line by line review of translator's work
The US has ordered a line-by-line review of every interrogation at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp involving an air force interpreter suspected of espionage and treason. Intelligence officers face the nightmare prospect that Ahmad al-Halabi, a Syrian-born linguist who served at the camp in Cuba for eight months, may have edited or distorted information given by al-Qaeda and Taliban suspects during interrogation sessions. Tapes of those interrogations - some lasting hours - are being freshly translated. "If the subject answered 'five' and [Halabi] told interrogators he said 'four', then you have a problem," one official said. Senior Airman Halabi, 24, faces 32 counts of espionage and aiding the enemy. He is accused of trying to channel classified information to Syria and attempting to smuggle two handwritten notes and more than 180 email messages from detainees to a third party overseas.
Posted by: Paul Moloney || 10/07/2003 2:20:21 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Split the bill for the re-translation among the families of the assholes discovered, with interest, of course... Oh - and don't forget the cost of the .22LR that is fired into the base of each asshat's cranium. Be sure to get the angle right so it rattles around in there for awhile.
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 9:13 Comments || Top||

#2  Don't bill the families. Bill the Mosques and the Islamic Society groups that taught these asshats.
Posted by: OldSpook || 10/07/2003 15:16 Comments || Top||

Report: Nuclear Labs Vulnerable to Attack
Security at the nation's nuclear weapons labs is so lax that the facilities have repeatedly failed drills in which mock terrorists captured radioactive material and escaped, according to an article in Vanity Fair magazine. "Some of the facilities would fail year after year," said Rich Levernier, who spent six years running war games for the U.S. government. "In more than 50 percent of our tests at the Los Alamos facility, we got in, captured the plutonium, got out again, and in some cases didn't fire a shot, because we didn't encounter any guards." These failures occurred despite security forces at the Los Alamos National Laboratories and other nuclear facilities knowing the dates of the drills months in advance, according to the story in next month's Vanity Fair.
This is not good.
Why do they still have jobs?
Anson Franklin, a spokesman for the National Nuclear Security Administration, an arm of the Department of Energy that oversees nuclear-weapons security, said Monday that the department has increased security funding by more than 50 percent to protect against terrorist attacks. "Allegations of a 50 percent failure rate in security tests are simply untrue," Franklin said. The report also says Levernier, a 22-year veteran of the U.S. Department of Energy, was stripped of his security clearance in 2001 after raising security concerns. Levernier has filed a whistleblower lawsuit arguing that he was illegally removed from his duties. Franklin denied that allegation. "We do not punish federal employees who are doing their jobs by pointing out potential weaknesses in safety and security," he said.
Ah, now I see. Grain of salt time.
Posted by: Steve White || 10/07/2003 12:53:49 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "49.9% sure, but not 50%!", said the spokesliar, Franklin.

Whomever was responsible for canning Levernier should be summarily fired in kind - or shot. The guys in the "Tiger Teams" who test the security of all Federal sites are invaluable. Denial doesn't accomplish shit.

C'mon Dubya, Rummy - get this guy back in the saddle and shitcan the clowns who can't handle the heat nor the assignment - this is important shit, not some idiotic political game. *heavy sigh*
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 4:29 Comments || Top||

#2  This is crap. Increasing funding by 50% does not automatically increase security. And they cannot hit 50% even when the know dates months in advance. What kind of shait is this? This lab should be shut down and its management fired as an example.

Sounds like Franklin should be fired and replaced with Levenier.

You are right dot-com. This is important shit!
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/07/2003 9:07 Comments || Top||

#3  I knew Rich "back when" (i.e., early 90s) when I spent a little time in the DOE. Levernier is a straight arrow. I had not heard that he had his clearance yanked. That's like revoking Mother Teresa's eligibility for sainthood. But the DOE was during my exposure to it the most poorly managed agency in the US government. There were competent people working within it but all were led by sniveling, spineless little pogues who thought leader was something you attached to a fishing line. They spent all day back-biting each other in an effort to protect their own rice bowl. And it appears nothing has changed.
Posted by: TerrorHunter4Ever || 10/07/2003 10:30 Comments || Top||

#4  I can't believe that Berkley continues to be allowed to run Los Alamos. They recently had to reinstate two detectives hired as internal auditors that were fired because they uncovered out of control theft of materials of all kind by lab employees.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 12:32 Comments || Top||

#5  Superhose...

As I said, nothing has changed....in DOE or the labs
Posted by: TerrorHunter4Ever || 10/07/2003 16:02 Comments || Top||

Syria Considers Amending Resolution
Syria is considering amending its resolution that seeks U.N. condemnation for Israeli air strikes on its soil after many countries, including the United States, called for more balance. The United States renewed its warning that it might block any draft that did not condemn the suicide bombing in Haifa.
So much for the resolution.
Many countries, including Russia appeared to give some support to the U.S. position on Monday, saying Damascus' proposed resolution condemning Israel should be reworked. ``We believe it would benefit from a more balanced form,'' Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Yuri Fedotov was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency. ``In particular, we think it should include a clause on the need to stop terrorist attacks in the region.'' Syria's U.N. Ambassador Fayssal Mekdad on Monday indicated his country may amend its resolution. ``We have to take into consideration the wish by member countries to look into some of the ideas they are raising,'' he said.
"In particular, we have to figure out why the same old baloney didn't fly this time."
Mekdad said he would wait for further instructions from Damascus. The attack on Sunday was the first Israeli strike deep within Syria since the 1973 Yom Kippur War. The Arab League said the bombing ``exposes the deteriorating situation in the region to uncontrollable consequences, which could drag the whole region into violent whirlpool.''
That's positively, ... North Korean in tone.
At an emergency meeting called at Syria's request Sunday, most council diplomats spoke out against both the airstrike and the suicide bombing in the Israeli port city of Haifa that killed 19 people and prompted Israel's retaliation. U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte said Monday he still found the Syrian draft ``deficient in many respects.'' Negroponte, who is also the Security Council president for October, indicated that he would decide on a further meeting or vote on the resolution once Syria comes back with a new draft.
Wonder if the Syrians will actually condemn the bombing? ... Nah!
Posted by: Steve White || 10/07/2003 12:39:09 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Dontcha hate it when the US runs the Security Council and acts like it's interested in, you know, security?
Posted by: Seafarious || 10/07/2003 0:58 Comments || Top||

#2  This is why they formed a "Arab League". So they could condemn Isreal outside of the UN.
Posted by: Charles || 10/07/2003 13:59 Comments || Top||

Middle East
Qurei resists US over fighters
The Palestinian prime minister says he will not risk a civil war by cracking down on armed groups, while the US says it will judge Ahmad Qurei by his willingness to confront them.
Lost that one already, hasn't he?
Qurei's comments on Monday came one day after President Yasir Arafat declared a state of emergency in Palestinian territories and approved an eight-member cabinet. "We are facing an abnormal situation. There is a state of chaos that should be confronted," he told Reuters. But he insisted he would use persuasion, not force, to stop attacks against Israel. "There won't be a civil war, (I will do it) through dialogue. There won't be martial law".
First y'gotta get their attention, Ahmed...
Qurei says he wants a truce with Israel but the Jewish state has ruled this out until the Palestinian Authority takes action against groups such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
We saw the corpses resulting from the last "truce."
The Palestinian premier also reiterated his criticism of resistance attacks in Israel. "This gives the Israeli side a justification to steal land under the pretext of security, kill under the pretext of security and expand settlements under the pretext of security. So there is a state of chaos that cannot be tolerated." Qurei did not give further details or say when he would hold talks with the Palestinian groups.
We'll get around to it. Some day."
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/07/2003 00:35 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The only thing "abnormal" here is that the US continues to throttle the Israeli response and waste so much effort in treating the Paleos as if they were capable of uniting behind anything except the destruction of Israel and killing Jews. There is no leadership worthy of the word in Paleodom. So much wasted motion and goodwill.

Insincere and disingenuous rhetoric is all that they have to offer in compensation for their blind bloodlust. Repay in kind, tenfold. A relentless campaign to generate car-swarm opportunites is appropriate. Rinse. Repeat. Rinse. Repeat. Etc.
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 5:48 Comments || Top||

#2  Hmmm... are we in a wait them out seige mode here? How many governments does Yasser have to go through before he gets tossed out? (of a high altitude aircraft over the Med. "Oops, I was just showing him what this baby could do, I guess he did not have his seat belt on.")
Posted by: Ben || 10/07/2003 5:48 Comments || Top||

#3  Lost that one already, hasn't he?

You're assuming he ever meant to do anything.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/07/2003 7:05 Comments || Top||

#4  RC is right on that one. Arafass has no intention of actually forming a Palestinian state - that would deprive him (and the rest of the Arab world) of his enemy. Apparently, having enemies to jihad against is more important than prosperity, peace, etc. etc.
Posted by: Spot || 10/07/2003 9:03 Comments || Top||

#5  spot - i fear you are spot on.

others - seems the strategy is to continue to make arafat irrelevant, Instead of focusing on Arafat, go after terror masters in Syria. This seems like a good idea, weaken the outside supporters and use that to shift power balance in territories. Also seems very much like this strategy has been worked out together between Israelis and White House. Avoids negative political blowback to both Israel and US of hitting Pals, and puts pressure on Syria not only wrt Pals, but wrt Iraq.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/07/2003 11:49 Comments || Top||

#6  haaretz "Nasser Yousef, who had been
tapped to be interior minister,
and Jawad Tibi, the designated
health minister, refused to
participate in the swearing-in
ceremony in front of Arafat due
to a dispute over the scope of
their authority"
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/07/2003 12:18 Comments || Top||

Syrian public outrage over attack
Many ordinary Syrians have voiced their anger over Israel's air strike near Damascus, with some calling for reprisals and others enraged by US reaction.
"We're so angry! Wanna see us seethe?"
The raid, Israel's deepest into Syria since the 1973 Middle East war, was a violent shock. One taxi driver, Mahir Awad, echoed others around him who hoped for a military response on the eve of the 30th anniversary of the war. Awad said: "I couldn't believe my ears when I heard. I wish I was there with a shotgun in my hand."
"I'da gotten myself killed!"
A university student, Jamal, said he hoped the government would send its own air force "to show them what Syrians can do".
I don't think you want to do that. Really.
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/07/2003 00:27 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  A university student, Jamal, said he hoped the government would send its own air force “to show them what Syrians can do".

yea go ahead and lose another 82 planes in one day
Posted by: Anonymous || 10/07/2003 0:57 Comments || Top||

#2  A university student, Jamal, said he hoped the government would send its own air force “to show them what Syrians can do".

Like "landing" their fighters without the use of the landing gear?
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/07/2003 1:55 Comments || Top||

#3  Is it true that Khadaffi resigned from the Arab league? Does anyone have information?
Posted by: Murat || 10/07/2003 3:32 Comments || Top||

#4  Murat - I can't find anything confirming it on Google, but my connection is particularly sucky at the moment and some pages are failing to load.

While looking...

I think this article from March where Clown Prince Abdullah and Khadaffy bitch-slap each other is where the ball really got rolling. Entertaining reading, no matter what!
Very funny exchange...
Posted by: .com || 10/07/2003 6:23 Comments || Top||

#5  Thanx .com,

I found it, he does resign. At least one thing he does right in a lifetime.
Posted by: Murat || 10/07/2003 6:34 Comments || Top||

#6  A university student, Jamal, said he hoped the government would send its own air force “to show them what Syrians can do".

Hot Damn! Break out the Mig 23s.

Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 7:37 Comments || Top||

#7  So, what was the official score in the 1982 Bekka Valley Mig Derby? I've heard 100-1 before...
Posted by: Laurence of the Rats || 10/07/2003 9:15 Comments || Top||

#8  I don't think any (IDF planes) were lost in air-to-air combat, and very few to ground fire.

The Syrians will do much better this time. Matter of fact I don't expect them to lose any aircraft in air-to-air combat.
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 10:04 Comments || Top||

#9  I was amused by the claim that the target wasn't a training camp. ( I'm sure it was a baby duck & kitten farm ) Yet they refused to let any reporters into the area. Nice.
Posted by: eyeyeye || 10/07/2003 10:17 Comments || Top||

#10  A Cessna 172 with a glider in tow was sighted heading to Israel piloted by a taxi driver armed with a shotgun and a University student with a beer bong. it is suspected the Syrian Air Force will so Israel what they can do.
Posted by: Yosemite Sam || 10/07/2003 10:29 Comments || Top||

#11  I hope the Syrian air force does try something--Our Patriot III systems in Israel could use some more field testing. So could our Sidewinders and Sparrows. And our F-16s. And that new Israeli integrated pilot helmet that was described on StrategyPage.com recently.
Posted by: Dar || 10/07/2003 10:58 Comments || Top||

#12  Jamal's a laugh riot. The Syrians can get their asses handed to them, just like the last two times they stuck their collective genitalia in the Israeli grinder.
Posted by: mojo || 10/07/2003 11:50 Comments || Top||

#13  Jamal is just uninformed. Decades of propoganda probably rotted his mind and filled him with bogus facts and excuses.

I'm curious what Shipman means by the Syrians not losing any aircraft to air-to-air combat this time. Do you think they'll be destroyed on the tarmac, or that they will be shot down by anti-aircraft weapons before they can engage?
Posted by: Yank || 10/07/2003 12:35 Comments || Top||

#14  I suspect they'll fly to Iran.
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 12:56 Comments || Top||

#15  Here is an article in Newsday titled Assad Says Air Strike Will Enhance Syria. On one level it is a laughable assertion, but getting bombed by Israel will probably actually improve Assad's credibility on the Arab Street. That would be Arbstreetcred.
Posted by: Superhose || 10/07/2003 13:10 Comments || Top||

#16  I could be wrong, but didn't we sell Syria a bunch of fighter jets with kill-switches in them?
Posted by: Charles || 10/07/2003 13:30 Comments || Top||

#17  Yank, I think Shipman's crack was meant to mean, "Those Syrian blowhards ain't gonna do nuthin'."
Posted by: Carl in N.H. || 10/07/2003 14:13 Comments || Top||

#18  "Syrian jets with Kill Switches" = redundant statement.

As for "flying to Iran", thres a little problem - they have to cross Iraq to get there.

Now, I wonder why Bush wanted Iraq, its not the fact that its geographically central to the middle east region, cutting lines from Iran to Syria... isolating them between Israel and a very well armed US Army Group.

Oh, thats right, Indymedia reminds me: it was the oil

[The most overlooked part of the Iraq action - and probably the most brialliant part of the whole thing: geopolitically, this one puts the hole in the donut, puts the US in the drivers seat: central area, easy to react outward in many different directions, no more paying off gulf states and the Soddys]
Posted by: OldSpook || 10/07/2003 15:15 Comments || Top||

#19  As for Syria v. Israel, 1982 air war, I think the air-to-air score was 47-0, Israel. Including anti-aircraft fire from the ground the score shifts to 82-3, Israel. Probably doesn't include the Syrian Mig-25 the PLO shot down because they thought it was an F-15.
Posted by: OminousWhatever || 10/07/2003 18:21 Comments || Top||

#20  As for "flying to Iran", thres a little problem - they have to cross Iraq to get there

Whoa! Didn't think of that minor detail. I wonder if they could make it to Cairo N. via the Med.
Posted by: Shipman || 10/07/2003 19:07 Comments || Top||

#21  you're right there OldSpook , it never was the oil, then again it never was WMDs, it was their geographical location which made it so inviting
Posted by: Igs || 10/07/2003 21:18 Comments || Top||

Kadyrov the winnah... Surprise!
The Kremlin-backed candidate in Chechnya's discredited presidential election Ahmad Kadyrov has been elected president of the troubled southern republic.
I'm so surprised.
Kadyrov won 81.1% of the vote casts in Sunday's poll, according to the RIA Novosti news agency.
And by a landslide, too...
Chechnya's estimated 560,000 registered voters had a choice of seven candidates, but two of Kadyrov's main rivals withdrew during the campaign and a third, Malik Saidullayev, a wealthy businessman and former prime minister, was disqualified because of alleged irregularities. The election has been widely criticised by critics as well as the Chechen independence fighters.
Also known as Krazed Killers...
Leader of the Chechen fighters, Aslan Maskhadov vowed to "rid our country of the occupiers and put an end to relations between Russia and the Chechen state, no matter how difficult the task".
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/07/2003 00:21 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Kadyrov won 81.1% of the vote casts in Sunday's poll, ...

How's he supposed to be a grade-A thug if he doesn't get 100%?
Posted by: Steve White || 10/07/2003 0:25 Comments || Top||

#2  He won by a mudslide....
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/07/2003 13:34 Comments || Top||

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Two weeks of WOT
Tue 2003-10-07
  Yasser on his deathbed?
Mon 2003-10-06
  Azam Tariq late!
Sun 2003-10-05
  Israel bombs IJ target in Syria
Sat 2003-10-04
  20 dead in Haifa boom
Fri 2003-10-03
  Suspected Saddam executioner caught
Thu 2003-10-02
  Pakistan kills 12 al Qaeda
Wed 2003-10-01
  Senate Panel OKs Bush $87B Iraq Plan
Tue 2003-09-30
  Jug time for teenage exploding Islamic hookers
Mon 2003-09-29
  AMC's Alamoudi jugged
Sun 2003-09-28
  Afghan Constitution Proposes Muslim State
Sat 2003-09-27
  Guilty plea in Portland
Fri 2003-09-26
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