Hi there, !
Today Mon 07/16/2007 Sun 07/15/2007 Sat 07/14/2007 Fri 07/13/2007 Thu 07/12/2007 Wed 07/11/2007 Tue 07/10/2007 Archives
Rantburg
480747 articles and 1695738 comments are archived on Rantburg.

Today: 86 articles and 446 comments as of 18:51.
Post a news link    Post your own article   
Area: WoT Operations    WoT Background    Non-WoT    Local News        Posting Order
Hek urges Islamist revolt in Pakistain
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 4: Opinion
5 00:00 Sherry [6477] 
3 00:00 JosephMendiola [6478] 
2 00:00 Zenster [6459] 
1 00:00 tu3031 [6457] 
4 00:00 Super Hose [6461] 
15 00:00 Ogeretla 2007 [6460] 
6 00:00 Zenster [6483] 
1 00:00 Zhang Fei [6460] 
5 00:00 Super Hose [6463] 
6 00:00 mhw [6462] 
Page 1: WoT Operations
3 00:00 Nimble Spemble [6461]
13 00:00 trailing wife [6477]
2 00:00 Scooter McGruder [6460]
9 00:00 Crusader [6459]
8 00:00 BA [6463]
7 00:00 Super Hose [6484]
13 00:00 JosephMendiola [6486]
1 00:00 Danielle [6457]
11 00:00 Redneck Jim [6458]
10 00:00 Super Hose [6475]
5 00:00 Zenster [6463]
3 00:00 JabbaTheTutt [6459]
0 [6460]
0 [6483]
2 00:00 John Deere [6464]
1 00:00 JohnQC [6463]
6 00:00 Zenster [6476]
0 [6457]
2 00:00 Super Hose [6479]
11 00:00 Frank G [6462]
0 [6461]
9 00:00 IG-88 [6463]
Page 2: WoT Background
0 [6460]
9 00:00 Zenster [6487]
1 00:00 Frank G [6459]
16 00:00 Old Patriot [6464]
7 00:00 Zenster [6461]
3 00:00 FOTSGreg [6459]
5 00:00 JohnQC [6463]
1 00:00 gromgoru [6464]
19 00:00 Mac [6470]
3 00:00 JosephMendiola [6481]
15 00:00 Cindy the Sheehan [6466]
0 [6462]
5 00:00 Zenster [6459]
13 00:00 Zenster [6461]
4 00:00 Zenster [6463]
0 [6462]
1 00:00 Glenmore [6466]
2 00:00 Procopius2k [6457]
0 [6460]
0 [6460]
4 00:00 doc [6483]
2 00:00 Zenster [6459]
5 00:00 Harry Reid [6461]
2 00:00 mojo [6460]
4 00:00 Barbara Skolaut [6461]
0 [6461]
0 [6463]
2 00:00 John Frum [6460]
Page 3: Non-WoT
1 00:00 badanov [6459]
3 00:00 JosephMendiola [6481]
14 00:00 Thineter Hitler9656 [6466]
0 [6459]
3 00:00 JosephMendiola [6480]
0 [6459]
9 00:00 Super Hose [6480]
2 00:00 Scooter McGruder [6462]
3 00:00 JosephMendiola [6477]
1 00:00 tu3031 [6460]
2 00:00 Skunky Glins5285 [6463]
4 00:00 Excalibur [6463]
5 00:00 JohnQC [6458]
1 00:00 Super Hose [6460]
23 00:00 RD [6477]
11 00:00 Frank G [6462]
Page 5: Local News
5 00:00 Nimble Spemble [6462]
2 00:00 Rambler [6459]
12 00:00 trailing wife [6480]
0 [6457]
2 00:00 trailing wife [6480]
10 00:00 Frank G [6461]
7 00:00 Super Hose [6461]
22 00:00 trailing wife [6461]
9 00:00 RD [6479]
8 00:00 tu3031 [6459]
Africa North
“Why We Reject Friendship Pact With France”
Translation of a statement by 'Al-Qaeda In The Islamic Maghreb' to the government of France.
Posted by: ryuge || 07/13/2007 09:38 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6457 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in North Africa

#1  Pretty lame for Jihad Unspun.
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/13/2007 14:18 Comments || Top||


Fifth Column
Cindy Sheehan has her Daily Kos account taken away for "treason"
Ace of Spades

A useful idiot who is no longer useful gets purged from the movement.

I can't post here anymore because my potential run for Congress is not on the Democratic ticket.
...
If Speaker Pelosi does her constitutionally mandated duty and I don't run, then I can come back and post.
I know a lot of you are hostile towards my candidacy. Please understand that I am doing it for your children and grandchildren (and my surviving ones.)

Remember, it's the left that allows "colorful and far-ranging" debates on the issue while the right moves in robotic lockstep where partisan power is the only governing imperative.

Interesting to see how the KKKos KKKiddies reacted:

WTF?????? (79+ / 0-)
This is crazy !!
I don't see Cindy as a threat to anyone!!
IF I thought I could do the job, hell... I'd run !!
What a bunch of BS from "friends"??
This is NOT the kind of site I believed it to be .
Very disappointed in people here ......:{
by EAP on Thu Jul 12, 2007 at 06:37:33 AM PDT


Then you don't know,,,, (181+ / 1-)

what this site is all about. Please read the FAQ.
I say again: PLEASE READ THE FAQ.
This is specifically a Democratic blog, with the purpose of electing Democrats.
It is not a blog set up to endorse members of another party running against Democrats.
Nothing else needs to be said. Cindy wrote a very concise, polite diary here, and I hope I have answered you in the same way.
"But your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore"--Prine 3610+ dead Americans. Bring them home.
by Miss Blue on Thu Jul 12, 2007 at 06:41:47 AM PDT

. . .

Thank you, thought police (11+ / 4-)
This site is more and more resembling 1984.
"I'm not planning on nuking anybody right now." Barack Obama, 4-26-07
by formernadervoter on Thu Jul 12, 2007 at 06:50:29 AM PDT
Posted by: Mike || 07/13/2007 07:19 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  We are allied with Eastasia. We have always been at war with Eurasia.

See, the KKs have a lot of experience with this sort of thing.
Posted by: gromky || 07/13/2007 8:18 Comments || Top||

#2  What a strange little world they all live in.
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/13/2007 9:08 Comments || Top||

#3  "What a strange little world they all live in."

I've heard it described that the left has a 'Smorgasbord of Realities'® while the rest of us have only one.
Posted by: Mullah Richard || 07/13/2007 9:44 Comments || Top||

#4  LOL toooo goood! I wonder how long the rest of the LLL Moonbats will stay with the DNC?
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 07/13/2007 10:13 Comments || Top||

#5  Take her to Room 101...
Posted by: mojo || 07/13/2007 10:47 Comments || Top||

#6  "But your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore" I don't think the average Lefty understands the flags on cars at all.

I felt cheered up on Sept 11 when I saw some old guy holding a flag on an overpass of the 101 Freeway. Every American flag after that cheered me up when I was down that week. I kept a flag on my car hoping it cheered someone up, troops, families of troops, or anyone who was down about the attack and the war. It had nothing to do with heaven, it had everything to do with people.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 07/13/2007 11:13 Comments || Top||

#7  Pelosi and Sheehan are two people who richly deserve each other.
Posted by: Ebbang Uluque6305 || 07/13/2007 12:00 Comments || Top||

#8  and, with the freedom it stands for, rjschwarz!

Boy, and just when I thought the Hillary/Obama mud-slinging was getting interesting, we have Cindy running for Pelosi's office? Boy, how they truly feed on their own. I guess there is a "smorgasboard" there after all! And, here I thought that Cindy was completely giving up on politics and America in total! Ah well, if anyone deserves her, it's the Berkley/San Fran crowd, LOL!
Posted by: BA || 07/13/2007 12:45 Comments || Top||

#9  BA, Cindy will only get to compete with Nancy in San Francisco. Her district includes most of San Francisco city and county.
Berkely is in Alameda County.
Posted by: Rambler || 07/13/2007 13:08 Comments || Top||

#10  Of course, Rambler, that won't stop them from VOTING in San Fran, eh? Remember:

Vote early and Vote OFTEN
Posted by: BA || 07/13/2007 13:57 Comments || Top||

#11  Please understand that I am doing it for your children and grandchildren (and my surviving ones.)

No, you're not. That might be what you say to your comrades, but let's face a little reality here, Cindy - not that reality means much to you, you self-aggrandizing, egotistical, US-loathing whore.

You're not doing this for my children or grandchildren or anyone else's. You're doing this for yourself and no one else.

FOAD already. Your 15 minutes have been over for a long, long time.

Posted by: FOTSGreg || 07/13/2007 15:39 Comments || Top||

#12  San And Alameda are alwyas the LAST two districts to turn in their vote counts. It's like they are waiting to see how many are needed. I think I remembner one year they found some ballots swimming in the bay (I guess they didn't need or want to count them). But it's all on the up-n-up because you can bet the EVERY homeless person will vote.
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 07/13/2007 17:08 Comments || Top||

#13  We are allied with Eastasia. We have always been at war with Eurasia.

OCEANIA

Oceania, Oceania...
The red light cameras everywhere...
Oceania, Oceania...
The land so bright and fair...

Our song to you, song to you...
Big brother keeps up on our toes...
The mulla's right, yes so right...
Those burkas keep our minds straight and pure...

In the bad old days,
When we all had a spine,
The destruction of those buildings would not stand..
But now wussified, we see the light...
And we don't have to think for ourselves...

Oceania, Oceania
Forever I will be true to you,
Oceania, Oceania...
Big Brother from Searchlight will bring us through

Play Music

An Ogeretla original tune...

Please sing along!


Posted by: Ogeretla 2007 || 07/13/2007 18:30 Comments || Top||

#14  The Second stanza which refers to burkas was not included with the music. Please skip.
Posted by: Ogeretla 2007 || 07/13/2007 18:32 Comments || Top||

#15  CORRECT VERSION

We are allied with Eastasia. We have always been at war with Eurasia.


OCEANIA

Oceania, Oceania...
Red light cameras everywhere...
Oceania, Oceania...
The land that’s so bright and so fair...

In the bad old days,
When we all had spines,
The destruction of those buildings would not stand..
But now wussified, we see the light...
And we don't have to think for ourselves...

Oceania, Oceania
Forever I will be true to you,
Oceania, Oceania...
Big Brother from Searchlight will bring us through!

Play Music

Posted by: Ogeretla 2007 || 07/13/2007 18:37 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Politix
Frank Gaffney Gets It
Frank J Gaffney Jr.
The Washington Times | July 13, 2007


Future historians will doubtless dissect with care the mindset of the current generation of American policymakers and legislators, and the public whose fate they help determine. Votes in coming days in the Senate will be among the evidence examined in the hopes of answering a question that will, with hindsight, be asked by many: What on earth were they thinking?
Actually, I think common sense should prevail by October, so I am not giving up the sinking ship until someone tries to patch the leaks.
That question, of course, is often posed on what the West's leaders and their peoples could possibly have had in mind as first they ignored, then tried to appease, the rising power and growing malevolence of Adolf Hitler and his fellow totalitarians. Couldn't they see what is so clear to us now: Such behavior on the part of freedom-loving nations would only put them at greater risk?

The answer, of course, is that the broad nature of the peril, if not all its particulars, could be foreseen — and was, at the time, by some like Winston Churchill. But the vast majority of his countrymen and others who would soon find themselves at war, enslaved or dead, preferred to listen to those who promised conflict could be avoided: negotiated agreements with the totalitarians would assure "peace in our time"; the latters' demands could be accommodated at someone else's expense. The problem was, in any event, a distant one.

History does not do us the favor of repeating itself precisely. If anything, the danger we face today from a new totalitarian ideology, Islamofascism, is even more grave than that posed by the ideologies that brought an earlier generation World War II. After all, the Islamists have spent decades cultivating adherents and developing infrastructure not just elsewhere (in this case, the strategic Middle East), but throughout the Free World.

This reality will cause our children and grandchildren to be all the more incredulous about our failure to understand the threat thus posed to our societies, freedoms and even our very existence. They will surely be reduced to asking specifically what on earth were we thinking as the following sort of behavior shaped the escalating, global conflict:

Congressional debates about various proposals to force the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, in which the majority appears indifferent to the possibility such a U.S. defeat will inflame the ambitions of our Islamofascist enemies. The attitude seems reminiscent of British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's famous comment as he wrote off Czechoslovakia, calling it a "faraway country of which we know nothing." Today's Chamberlains are convinced that what they call the "war in Iraq" — a country even farther away, of which we know even less — can simply be ended by our fiat, without consequences for us. How could we be so naive, so irresponsible?

Those who call themselves "realists" implicitly accept that there may be adverse effects from abandoning Iraq. They insist such risks can be mitigated, however, by negotiating with the very parties that have done the most to exacerbate the Iraqis' difficulties — Iran and Syria. How can we possibly be so deluded as to think such negotiations this time will not produce results akin to those of previous efforts to parlay with other totalitarians: confirming their contempt for Western interlocutors, reinforcing the despots' sense of inevitable victory and encouraging more aggressive behavior by the latter to achieve that outcome on an accelerated basis?

With or without the political cover of the sort of negotiations proposed by former Secretary of State James Baker's Iraq Study Group (the ridiculousness of which is brilliantly captured by a popular video by Hollywood director David Zucker posted on YouTube. Proponents of precipitous withdrawals of U.S. forces from Iraq are evidently untroubled by a key fact: Such an extrication will almost certainly be conducted under fire, via a kind of "Dunkirk in the Desert" — a pell-mell rush for the exits that would make the allied forces' retreat from France in 1940 look like, well, a day at the beach. How, future generations will wonder, could anyone believe that will be good for America and its vital interests?

Even President Bush, who understands that we are confronting a new and toxic ideology that extends far beyond Iraq, nonetheless systematically fails to practice the first principle of counter-ideological struggles: delegitimate your enemies. Instead, the president and his minions persist in holding meetings with, hiring, being influenced by and otherwise embracing Islamists in America. The effect is palpable. Those aligned with, if not actually working for, our foes are empowered at the expense of anti-Islamist Muslims, advancing the formers' bid to dominate their community — a crucial first step toward their stated goal of world domination. Our successors will find such wholly counterproductive behavior to be inexplicable, as indeed it is.
The President is reaching out to Republican critics of his Middle East policy; if they stand their ground he will understand that it is he and not they who need to bend.

There is one small consolation for those whose conduct will be seen by coming generations to have contributed in these ways to the mortal imperiling of the Free World: History is written by the victors. Unless we awaken to the true nature and magnitude of our peril, stop pandering to a democratic people's reflexive desire to recoil from deadly conflict if at all possible and adopt the sort of comprehensive war footing that has long been in order, the victors may be appreciative of those who played a part — however small or unintended — in enabling totalitarianism at last to vanquish freedom.
Posted by: McZoid || 07/13/2007 04:38 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6483 views] Top|| File under: Global Jihad

#1  If I take a 'generous' view of the 'loyal' opposition, their argument is something like this:
1) We are propping up a corrupt and incompetent government (just like in Vietnam),
2) It follows other corrupt and incompetent governments we have tried to establish (just like in Vietnam),
3) It can only be followed by further corrupt and incompetent governments (difficult to argue with a redundancy like that),
4) We can't win,
therefore
5) We should pull out now and keep from wasting any more American lives and dollars.

My more cynical self suspects the logic is more like this:
1) Bush's schemes might actually work,
2) That would make him look good and us look bad,
therefore
3) We have to make sure the plans fail.
Posted by: Glenmore || 07/13/2007 8:03 Comments || Top||

#2  We are propping up a corrupt and incompetent government

And this differs from what's in the beltway, how?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 07/13/2007 9:18 Comments || Top||

#3  ...the danger we face today from a new totalitarian ideology, Islamofascism, is even more grave than that posed by the ideologies that brought an earlier generation World War II...

If we don't learn the lessons of history even though "History does not do us the favor of repeating itself precisely" we will be condemned to repeat it--not precisely but maybe in a way that is even costlier. Appeasement only fuels our enemies to a greater extent. We pay now or the world pays even more later. Appeasement is negligence and when it leads to such cataclysms as WWII, criminal. History's legacy of Chamberlain is that he was weak, spineless, and a failure. His inaction precipitated WWII. Will history relegate our Congressmen and women to this scrapheap of history. Will they be remembered for their failure to act and stop a threat when they had their chance? Will they be remembered for precipitating WWIII? Frank Gaffney does get it.
Posted by: JohnQC || 07/13/2007 11:04 Comments || Top||

#4  Not if we can help it, John QC!
Posted by: MSM Reporter || 07/13/2007 12:41 Comments || Top||

#5  Glenmore - I have altered your template in a way that would be instructive to the "loyal opposition"

1) We are propping up a corrupt and incompetent government (just like in South Korea),
2) It follows other corrupt and incompetent governments we have tried to establish (just like in South Korea),
3) It can only be followed by further corrupt and incompetent governments (difficult to argue with a redundancy like that), May eventually improve (high end of scale Japan - low end of the scale Haiti)
4) We can't may not win
5) We should pull out now and keep from wasting any more American lives and dollars. (Or we can stalemate and like we did in the Cold War which kept an ever increasing percentage of Koreans and Europeans free.)

My take on the current Congress is that like generals there are some Sentators and Representatives that are not fit to serve during wartime.
Posted by: Super Hose || 07/13/2007 21:31 Comments || Top||

#6  For those who may have missed it, here's a link to Zucker's mini-masterpiece.
Gaffney does indeed get it.

Even President Bush, who understands that we are confronting a new and toxic ideology that extends far beyond Iraq, nonetheless systematically fails to practice the first principle of counter-ideological struggles: delegitimate your enemies.

Where once Bush was on target with "The Axis of Evil", his systematic failure to mobilize against an easily idenitified, yet still unnamed, enemy will most likely damn any legacy he might have been entitled to. Only the bombing of Iran can possibly restore any luster to Bush's administration.

Posted by: Zenster || 07/13/2007 22:57 Comments || Top||


Home Front: WoT
Terrorist Group Logos
(from Ironic Sans Blog)

Terrorist groups, like any organization, need brand identities. With so many groups claiming credit for terrorist acts, and so many videotapes being put out featuring men in ski masks, it’s hard to keep track of which group committed what violent act. So terrorist organizations have logos. It recently occurred to me that someone had to actually design those logos. But how did they decide who gets to do it? Did the job go to whichever terrorist had a copy of Adobe Illustrator?

I did some research and rounded up as many logos as I could find from terrorist groups past and present. While I hate to give terrorists any more attention, I still think it’s interesting to see the various approaches they took in their logos, and wonder what considerations went into designing them. Does the logo successfully convey the organization’s message? Is it confusingly similar to another group’s logo? Does it exhibit excessive drop shadows, gradients, or use of whatever font is the Arabic equivalent of Papyrus?

Quick Disclaimer: I picked these terrorist groups from a list of designated terrorist organizations on Wikipedia. Since Wikipedia is a user-edited website, I can’t verify who decided these groups are terrorist organizations. So if it turns out one of these groups is an actual army or a legitimate non-violent organization, don’t blame me...
Article continues with logo subtypes, but then has all sorts of bizarre commentary from follow-up messages.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 07/13/2007 09:12 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Ya forgot al-Qaeda... So I made one up...

Presenting the al-Qaeda banner...

Posted by: BigEd || 07/13/2007 16:43 Comments || Top||

#2  Thank you for the tip about reading the comments. I haven't laughed that hard since I read the comments at the site accusing the Teletubbies of being Pinko.
Posted by: Super Hose || 07/13/2007 21:53 Comments || Top||

#3  OMFG! Telecommies is hilarious!!
Posted by: badanov || 07/13/2007 22:14 Comments || Top||

#4  The comments are the best part of Commie Tubbies. The ones for the terror logos were excellent as well.
Posted by: Super Hose || 07/13/2007 22:19 Comments || Top||


India-Pakistan
Politics of jihad real reason for Lal Masjid crisis
Javed Ahmad Ghamidi is a well-known Pakistani Islamic scholar. Since January 2006, he has been a member of the Council of Islamic Ideology, a constitutional body responsible for giving legal advice on Islamic issues to the government. Daily Times spoke with Ghamidi about Maulana Abdul Rashid Ghazi’s call for establishing the Sharia and the Lal Masjid crisis. Excerpts follow.

Daily Times: Who do you think is responsible for the Jamia Hafsa episode?
Javed Ahmad Ghamidi: The country is facing this bitter reality as a result of the government’s past mistakes. These [clerics and militants] are the same people the state prepared and used in the name of Islam for many years. After the Afghan war, abandoned by those who propped them up, they decided to set and achieve their own goals. This is a consequence of the dreams of paradise that were sold to innocent youths in exchange for their participation in the ‘jihad’ against the Russians. Now that the Afghan war is over, the Russians ousted, these self-created Taliban and jihadis are now useless for external forces like America. Abandoned by everyone, these men will now make their own fate. The Pakistani establishment thought these human beings could be turned into robots. That never happens. Islam and jihad are being used as political tools in other regions also. Take the example of internal rifts between Muslim militants in Afghanistan, Palestine and Iraq. There are now internal rifts in religious groups in these countries and much in-fighting, with disastrous consequences. In Pakistan, militants like the ones in the Lal Masjid were funded and sponsored by the establishment through external sources. The politics of jihad is the real reason for the bitter crisis Pakistan is facing today.

DT: What do you have to say about the stance of the Lal Masjid clerics?
JAG: Everyone knows that the Lal Masjid and related madrassas are located on illegal land. The mosque’s administration admitted as much. The question is, who provided this space to these clerics in the first place? Everyone knows that the father of the Ghazi brothers, Maulana Abdulalh, was funded and given perks during General Ziaul Haq’s regime to foster the concept of jihad as conceived by the establishment. The establishment has brought us to where we now stand.

DT: How do you see the operation by the government against Lal Masjid?
JAG: The state remained unable to establish its writ. The clerics should have been stopped much earlier. This operation has seriously jeopardised internal peace and harmony. The situation is dangerous and unfortunate. It was said that thousands of women and children were at the mercy of the militants holed up in the mosque. Every possible effort should have been made to avoid bloodshed. It did not look like the government could handle the operation. It seemed as if they had not done their homework, that is, there seemed to have been no detailed analysis.

DT: If the government operation is considered a failure, what should the solution have been?
JAG: There should have been maximum efforts to engage in dialogue. The talks that were conducted failed, and the government then dealt with the matter by enforcing the law. Dealing with such situations in such an ad-hoc manner will put the country’s future at risk. I strongly recommend that not only the government but also Islamic clerics and civil society give serious thought to their actions before devising future strategy.

DT: What do you recommend for the future?
JAG: The government must stop madrassas from imparting only religious education. It should ensure that no under-age or teenaged child is admitted to a madrassa unless the institution can provide general education certification up to at least the intermediate level. After that, the students should have the freedom to choose whether they want to pursue further religious education. Only after general schooling can a child make an independent decision about pursuing specialised religious education. It should be mandatory for madrassas to impart general education. This will certainly not be an easy task as evident from the fact that the madrassa reforms apparently attempted in the country have been a complete failure.
Posted by: Fred || 07/13/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under: TNSM

#1  This dipstick's mushy BS prescriptions are just par for the course. Make concessions, and if negotiations fail, make more concessions. If Mushy listened to this guy, Pakistan would now be a Taliban state.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 07/13/2007 9:42 Comments || Top||


Iraq
Krauthammer: Give Petraeus This Chance...
The stakes are too high not to.
By Charles Krauthammer

The key to turning (Anbar) around was the shift in allegiance by tribal sheiks. But the sheiks turned only after a prolonged offensive by American and Iraqi forces, starting in November, that put al-Qaeda groups on the run. — New York Times, July 8

Finally, after four terribly long years, we know what works. Or what can work. A year ago, a confidential Marine intelligence report declared Anbar province (which comprises about a third of Iraq’s territory) lost to al Qaeda. Now, in what the Times’s John Burns calls an “astonishing success,” the tribal sheiks have joined our side and committed large numbers of fighters that, in concert with American and Iraqi forces, have largely driven out al Qaeda and turned its former stronghold of Ramadi into one of most secure cities in Iraq.

It began with a U.S.-led offensive that killed or wounded more than 200 enemy fighters and captured 600. Most important was the follow-up. Not a retreat back to American bases, but the setting up of small posts within the population that, together with the Iraqi national and tribal forces, have brought relative stability to Anbar.

The same has started happening in many of the Sunni areas around Baghdad, including Diyala province — just a year ago considered as lost as Anbar — where, for example, the Sunni insurgent 1920 Revolution Brigades have turned against al Qaeda and joined the fight on the side of U.S. and Iraqi government forces.

We don’t yet know if this strategy will work in mixed Sunni-Shiite neighborhoods. Nor can we be certain that this cooperation between essentially Sunni tribal forces and an essentially Shiite central government can endure. But what cannot be said — although it is now heard daily in Washington — is that the surge, which is shorthand for Gen. David Petraeus’s new counterinsurgency strategy, has failed. The tragedy is that, just as a working strategy has been found, some Republicans in the Senate have lost heart and want to pull the plug.

It is understandable that Sens. Lugar, Voinovich, Domenici, Snowe, and Warner may no longer trust President Bush’s judgment when he tells them to wait until Petraeus reports in September. What is not understandable is the vote of no confidence they are passing on Petraeus. These are the same senators who sent him back to Iraq by an 81-0 vote to institute his new counterinsurgency strategy.

A month ago, Petraeus was asked whether we could still win in Iraq. The general, who had recently attended two memorial services for soldiers lost under his command, replied that if he thought he could not succeed he would not be risking the life of a single soldier.

Just this week, Petraeus said that the one thing he needs more than anything else is time. To cut off Petraeus’s plan just as it is beginning — the last surge troops arrived only last month — on the assumption that we cannot succeed is to declare Petraeus either deluded or dishonorable. Deluded in that, as the best-positioned American in Baghdad, he still believes we can succeed. Or dishonorable in pretending to believe in victory and sending soldiers to die in what he really knows is an already failed strategy.

That’s the logic of the wobbly Republicans’ position. But rather than lay it on Petraeus, they prefer to lay it on Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and point out his government’s inability to meet the required political “benchmarks.” As a longtime critic of the Maliki government, I agree that it has proved itself incapable of passing laws important for long-term national reconciliation.

But first comes the short term. And right now we have the chance to continue to isolate al Qaeda and, province by province, deny it the Sunni sea in which it swims. A year ago, it appeared that the only way to win back the Sunnis and neutralize the extremists was with great national compacts about oil and power sharing. But Anbar has unexpectedly shown that even without these constitutional settlements, the insurgency can be neutralized and al Qaeda defeated at the local and provincial level with a new and robust counterinsurgency strategy.

The costs are heartbreakingly high — increased American casualties as the enemy is engaged and spectacular suicide bombings designed to terrify Iraqis and demoralize Americans. But the stakes are extremely high as well.

In the long run, agreements on oil, federalism, and de-Baathification are crucial for stabilizing Iraq. But their absence at this moment is not a reason to give up in despair, now that we finally have a counterinsurgency strategy in place that is showing success against the one enemy that both critics and supporters of the war maintain must be fought everywhere and at all cost — al Qaeda.
Posted by: Sherry || 07/13/2007 10:55 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6477 views] Top|| File under: Iraqi Insurgency

#1  Correct in spirit, but it almost underlines the jaw-dropping weirdness of strategy discussions in the last few years. We didn't "discover" that killing the enemy, seizing the initiative, and living in his house was the way to defeat him - that was obvious, logical, commonsensical, and well established by, well, every such conflict in history. "Duh".

The wonder was that Casey, Chiarelli, and the administration believed (if they did) for two minutes that the all-leverage, magic, and political progress "strategy" would achieve anything against ruthless killers and Sunnis who are undefeated, fearful, and arrogant.

I also don't buy the excuse for the mediocre, er, moderate GOPers - they're grown-ups (hell, Lugar is even senior and "widely respected", according to major media, wow), they can think for themselves, they have access to info. They don't need to rely on the president's judgement, they can use their own. And when they do, and they can't explain it any better than they have (which is to say not at all - there's absolutely no there there, for example with Lugar), then a reasonable supposition is that they're 1) cowards 2) over their heads.

The costs were "heartbreakingly high" when we were losing nearly as many people while doing essentially very little, other than to secure some elections (serious offensive action would have both secured the elections and made progress against the enemies). Now, at least, we're DOING something.

Once again, the administration bears the blame for confusing people's heads with this silliness about "political benchmarks" and the importance of the legislative laundry list. Paranoid, arrogant, racist Sunnis, their fence-sitting neighbors, their Shi'a counter-parts, and the neighbors of those Shi'a who may be (temporarily) enlisted with the Quds force or some criminal gang - all people don't give a flying f**k about the oil bill, de-Ba'athification reform, or anything else on the list.

I'll leave it to Krauthammer, as a trained psychiatrist, to judge whether it is a delusion or a hallucination to believe that security is not the first and essential step in winning a conflict like this. (there's also plain sloppy thinking in confusing the importance and timing of reconstruction as part of the overall process, which it is - but later) But these afflictions are found in abundance in uniformed personnel, and they will plague us beyond the current administration.

Petraeus can help reduce the fever (wildly mixing metaphors) by achieving something with the sword here, and making sure it's reported accurately within the services.
Posted by: Verlaine || 07/13/2007 12:24 Comments || Top||

#2  Benchmarks might have been a sop for the carping dhimmicrats to shut them up. I don't think they stand for much else. Can you imagine if WWII had been fought using "benchmarks?" Our leaders decided to win the war no matter what it would take or how long it would take. WIN the war and you will know when you have won. The rest of the laundry list can be addressed after the win.
Posted by: JohnQC || 07/13/2007 12:57 Comments || Top||

#3  Give him this chance, or else.
September, not tomorrow.
Posted by: newc || 07/13/2007 21:39 Comments || Top||

#4  Again, I suspect that when September rolls around, the General will drop a bombshell: that the surge worked, and that large numbers of combat troops are packing up to come home.

The democrats suspect this, and are shaking in their boots that's what he's going to say. Or if they don't suspect this, they are really, really dumb.

But the irony is that as explosive as that sounds, the devil is in the details. Indeed a lot of troops will be coming home, because they are no longer needed, but lots will be staying on.

Far more than just trainers, there will be lots of combat troops both in country and on the Gulf, more than enough to provide combat support and pickup operations as needed. A large portion of SOCOM will also be staying around.

The idea is to have a big blow-off in which they loudly proclaim "The Troops Are Coming Home!", after which anyone who says we must "bring the troops home" will be looked at funny, like they haven't heard the news or something.

It will kill Iraq as a campaign issue, mostly because the public will be fatigued from the whole anti war thing, and won't give two hoots about any more whining.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 07/13/2007 22:37 Comments || Top||

#5  Anonymoose --- thank you. Deep in my heart, I wanted to say this, but I have not the right words, or the back ground to back this up.

Hehe.... I've envision, Patraeus, with all his military bearing, his confidence and his trust both for his warriors and his warriors for him, appearing before Congress.

A screenwriter's dream. He, with shoulders back, head up, chin out, a soldier's stance for him, presenting to Congress, number by number, point by point, picture by picture, of the changes in Iraq. Presenting in such a way, there is no question, just silence when he finishes, cause, there is nothing left to say.

I read this today, "They say that, in wartime, all the real leaders rise to the top and the "peacetime" leaders leave. I've been waiting around for awhile... maybe this war is finally starting to have that effect as well."
Posted by: Sherry || 07/13/2007 23:59 Comments || Top||


Austin Bay-- Quick US Exit From Iraq: Seven Scenarios
Getting a head start on contemplating the unthinkable, Austin Bay sketches out seven possible scenarios-- six of them ugly-- for the aftermath of an abrupt American withdrawal from Iraq. A quick but worthwhile read. Also, check out Wretchard's take on the subject. My own analysis: we bug out of Iraq, things will get really shitty, really fast. There, AND here.
No argument from me.
Posted by: Dave D. || 07/13/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under: Iraqi Insurgency

#1  The key variable not mention is will the US guarantee Iraq's current borders. If they do, then no Turkish or Iranian adventurism, and we have a partitioned Iraq. If they don't, then one or both could well roll the dice and we have a regional war, involving a number of countries that redraws the map. It also drastically reduces oil exports and sends the West in a headlong dash for alternative secure energy supplies (coal, nuclear).
Posted by: phil_b || 07/13/2007 2:00 Comments || Top||

#2  "Senarios" #4,5, and 6 are already underway, with slightly different leading titles. No great leap in predictive analysis seen with these I'm afraid. Should senario #1 occurs, then senario 3 will follow at some level, most likely within 24 hours. Scenario 7 has about as much chance as Fred or I winning the Virginia lotto. A course of action (COA) not presented is the IDF whacking of Iraq and or Syria which could nuetralize all hostile activity within the region which could nuetralize hostile activity in the region for at least 30 days or so.
Posted by: Besoeker || 07/13/2007 3:09 Comments || Top||

#3  There is only 1 real scenario: Iran moves into southern Iraq, and US and allied troops are not in place to push them back.

Allowing inevitable ethnic cleansing to take its mostly non-violent course while both basing US troops away from cities and accepting a mostly support role for internal security, would certainly reduce US troop losses and would probably secure majority support. We are in sort of an experimental stage leading to change in October.
Posted by: McZoid || 07/13/2007 4:04 Comments || Top||

#4  I agree with Wretchard:

I think the key problem that must attend any forced American retreat from Iraq is avoiding the appearance and reality of having thrown in the hand. How do you walk away from the table without leaving the game? That's the key dilemma. And the answer, I think policy makers will find, is that you can't. Absent a complete disinterest in the outcome of the game, a willingness to accept whichever scenario eventuates, regardless of its desirability, there will be enormous pressure to remain in the game somehow, either by backing one of the remaining players or attempting to play from afar.

Given the strategic importance of the region the real nightmare scenario is that you will have to go back in after you have talked yourself out.
Posted by: Mike || 07/13/2007 6:51 Comments || Top||

#5  The USA doesn't have to be on the ground to stop an Iranian move into S. Iraq. Any troop/armour moves would be sitting ducks for US airpower. Small scale covert moves would be little difference to currently.
Posted by: phil_b || 07/13/2007 8:46 Comments || Top||

#6  Austin's scenarios are not mutually exclusive; however each one (even the 'good' #7) probably result in huge numbers of dead Iraqis and huge numbers of Iraqis who seek temporary residence in the US.
Posted by: mhw || 07/13/2007 13:06 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Rafsanjani Speaks
Just what is it that is gonna wake us up?

By Michael Rubin

Former President and current Expediency Council chairman Hashemi Rafsanjani, whom many in Washington consider a possible partner, gave Iran's official weekly sermon today. Among his points, according to the Islamic Republic News Agency :

* The U.S. doesn't declare its true casualty figures in Iraq (A recurrent propaganda line, Persian headline and text, here).

* "The whole oppression against the Muslim nation of Iran originates from the US"

* "[The Americans] are receiving an appropriate response from the Almighty God in Iraq and Afghanistan."

* "What a superpower the US is when it can be easily trapped in a small country like Iraq?"

* "The Americans remember their escape from Vietnam and they will have to repeat the same experience in a worse way in Iraq."

* "The US forces have no security in Afghanistan and have failed to materialize their declared objectives in that country."

Me: The idea floating around Washington that Iraq can be separated from Afghanistan is naive. The Iranians, who interfere in both, have the same objectives in both. Iraq is a laboratory. If strategies applied there cause the U.S. Congress to embrace defeat, then those same strategies will be applied in Afghanistan.

And those inclined to accept Rafsanjani's veracity in the hopes that he might be a sincere diplomatic partner might note his statement:

"Iran has proved the fact that it never uses unconventional warfare. We could use chemical weapons in our war with Iraq as the Iraqis did, but we didn't."

This is an outright lie. Between 1984 and 1988, Iran used chemical weapons against Iraqi forces (who first used CW against Iran in 1983). And, of course, in a similar sermon on December 14, 2001, Rafsanjani said the Islamic Republic would consider first use of a nuclear weapon should it achieve that capability.
Posted by: Sherry || 07/13/2007 10:40 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6478 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  * "The whole oppression against the Muslim nation of Iran originates from the US"

If this is what he and the Iranian people believe, who are we to prove them wrong? Let's put some actual truth into Rafsanjani's rhetoric and really oppress Iran in a meaningful way.

* "[The Americans] are receiving an appropriate response from the Almighty God in Iraq and Afghanistan."

It is this divinely inspired mentality borne by so many Muslims that makes it ever more imperative that we begin laying waste to our Islamic foes. They must be made to understand how their's is a false religion that has led them into the arms of disaster and rendered Islam an impotent and backward creed.

Defeating theocratic Islam is one of the West's greatest priorities. Part of doing so is to remove all doubt for Muslims that they have been abandoned by their false god and must pay the price for imposing such a violent and mistaken ideology upon the larger world. This cannot begin too soon. Islam must for once and all time be discredited by the more powerful West. Our lives depend upon it.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/13/2007 22:16 Comments || Top||

#2  Just what is it that is gonna wake us up?

Loss of a major city. But don't worry, we've got plenty.
Posted by: Harry Reid || 07/13/2007 22:22 Comments || Top||

#3  I'll ask this question again - does this mean that during the Cold War, e.g. Vietnam and 1960's - 1975, and inclusive of the Arab-Israeli conflict and Red China, that mainstream Muslims wants and preferred the Soviets and Chicoms over dealing wid the USA-West??? Do angry Muslims, including Radic Islamists, hate the USA = USA-West because of specific actions + decisions,; or becuz of envy andor the failures of Islam per se, etc.??? Remember now, even notable, dedicated Islamist personages have publicly stated or implied that they + Islam-Islamism fear the self-/ideo-perceived growing obsolescence and irrelevance of Islam in the modern world, espec in relation to the USA-West. IT IS MUSLIMS THAT HAVE SAID OR IMPLIED THIS, NOT WESTIES OR JUDAEO-XTIANS OR EVEN ANTI-ISLAMIST WESTIES.
Posted by: JosephMendiola || 07/13/2007 23:10 Comments || Top||


Interview: Waiting for an Iranian Chernobyl
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/13/2007 09:57 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran

#1  Could happen.
Posted by: JohnQC || 07/13/2007 16:25 Comments || Top||

#2  Cost of constructing the Bushehr reactor: $6 billion dollars.

IAEA annual budget: $290 million dollars.

An Iranian meltdown that causes Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Dubai and the entire Gulf region to be swathed in a cloud of toxic radioactive fallout: Priceless

The MME (Muslim Middle East) has been willing to turn a blind eye towards Iranian terrorism for many decades. Suddenly the price tag of giving Iran such free rein for the greater glory of Islam now appears to be a bit more costly than anyone may have expected.

When your reactor maintenance policy is summed up by, "In'sallah", it's safe to say that some hot times are coming for Iran.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/13/2007 17:04 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Culture Wars
When Rights Are Wrong
Sure, terrorists may want to blow up your kid’s school and decapitate you. But never forget that they have rights. And they’ll have even more if some in Congress have their way.

Lawmakers are considering legislation that would give “unlawful enemy combatants” habeas-corpus rights (i.e., the ability to challenge their detention in a civil court). But civil law has never governed the conduct of war — and with good reason.

Warfare isn’t the same as civil society. Just as an army cannot function effectively as a democracy (“Okay, boys — how many think we should attack at dawn?”), so the laws of war cannot mindlessly mirror the tenets of civic jurisprudence. They are designed to give soldiers the legal means to deal effectively and humanely with enemy soldiers, civilians, and, importantly, unlawful combatants — those who intentionally violate the rules.

Granting terrorists rights to which they are not entitled wouldn’t make the world a safer place and wouldn’t win over our enemies and critics. Worse, it would make armed conflicts more dangerous for soldiers and civilians.

Posted by: gromgoru || 07/13/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under: Global Jihad

#1  Exactly which dhimmicrats are sponsoring this ? They are unnamed. Just why are the lefties so compassionate in support of terrorists ? Maybe they ought to do some foot patrols and see what it's like when an IED goes off instead of flying around in helos with two or three Apaches for protection. Their compassion may melt in the desert heat.
Posted by: Woozle Elmeter2970 || 07/13/2007 1:07 Comments || Top||

#2  The traitor elite grows ever more bold.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/13/2007 1:31 Comments || Top||

#3  It's not just the U.K. that's "stuck on stupid".
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 07/13/2007 3:29 Comments || Top||

#4  I smell Pat Leahy...or I stepped in dogshit.
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/13/2007 9:32 Comments || Top||

#5  During the Revolution some of the American units used democratic voting as a way to make tactical and operational decisions. It didn't work so well.
Posted by: Super Hose || 07/13/2007 21:19 Comments || Top||



Who's in the News
34[untagged]
13Taliban
7Iraqi Insurgency
7Global Jihad
3Govt of Iran
3Islamic Courts
2TNSM
2Fatah al-Islam
2Hezbollah
2Mahdi Army
2Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal
1Govt of Syria
1al-Qaeda in North Africa
1Islamic Jihad
1Thai Insurgency
1al-Aqsa Martyrs
1Palestinian Authority
1Hamas
1al-Qaeda in Britain
1Hizb-i-Islami-Hekmatyar

Bookmark
E-Mail Me

The Classics
The O Club
Rantburg Store
The Bloids
The Never-ending Story
Thugburg
Gulf War I
The Way We Were
Bio

Merry-Go-Blog











On Sale now!


A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.

Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.

Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has dominated Mexico for six years.
Click here for more information

Meet the Mods
In no particular order...
Steve White
Seafarious
Pappy
lotp
Scooter McGruder
john frum
tu3031
badanov
sherry
ryuge
GolfBravoUSMC
Bright Pebbles
trailing wife
Gloria
Fred
Besoeker
Glenmore
Frank G
3dc
Skidmark
Alaska Paul

Two weeks of WOT
Fri 2007-07-13
  Hek urges Islamist revolt in Pakistain
Thu 2007-07-12
  Iraq: 200 boom belts found in Syrian truck
Wed 2007-07-11
  Ghazi dead, crisis over, aftermath begins
Tue 2007-07-10
  Paks assault Lal Masjid
Mon 2007-07-09
  Israeli cabinet okays Fatah prisoner release
Sun 2007-07-08
  Pak arrests Talibigs
Sat 2007-07-07
  100 Murdered in Turkmen Village of Amer Li
Fri 2007-07-06
  Failed assasination attempt at Musharraf
Thu 2007-07-05
  1200 surrender at Lal Masjid
Abul Aziz Ghazi nabbed sneaking out in burka
Wed 2007-07-04
  12 dead as Lal Masjid students provoke gunfight
Tue 2007-07-03
  UK bomb plot suspect 'arrested in Brisbane'
Mon 2007-07-02
  Algerian security forces bang Ali Abu Dahdah
Sun 2007-07-01
  Lebs find car used in Gemayel murder
Sat 2007-06-30
  Car, petrol attack at Glasgow airport terminal
Fri 2007-06-29
  Car bomb defused in central London

Better than the average link...



Rantburg was assembled from recycled algorithms in the United States of America. No trees were destroyed in the production of this weblog. We did hurt some, though. Sorry.
54.92.164.9
Help keep the Burg running! Paypal:
WoT Operations (22)    WoT Background (28)    Non-WoT (16)    Local News (10)    (0)