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-Signs, Portents, and the Weather-
Unfettered 'citizen journalism' too risky
You're beginning to get a lot more news ... from you.

It ranges from the CNN YouTube debates to political blogs to cellphone video of that sniper who opened fire at an Omaha Mall. These are all examples of so called "citizen journalism," the hot new extension of the news business where the audience becomes the reporter.

Supporters of "citizen journalism" argue it provides independent, accurate, reliable information that the traditional media don't provide. While it has its place, the reality is it really isn't journalism at all, and it opens up information flow to the strong probability of fraud and abuse. The news industry should find some way to monitor and regulate this new trend.

The premise of citizen journalism is that regular people can now collect information and pictures with video cameras and cellphones, and distribute words and images over the Internet. Advocates argue that the acts of collecting and distributing makes these people "journalists." This is like saying someone who carries a scalpel is a "citizen surgeon" or someone who can read a law book is a "citizen lawyer." Tools are merely that. Education, skill and standards are really what make people into trusted professionals. Information without journalistic standards is called gossip.

But unlike those other professions, journalism — at least in the United States — has never adopted uniform self-regulating standards. There are commonly accepted ethical principals — two source confirmation of controversial information or the balanced reporting of both sides of a story, for example, but adhering to the principals is voluntary. There is no licensing, testing, mandatory education or boards of review. Most other professions do a poor job of self-regulation, but at least they have mechanisms to regulate themselves. Journalists do not.

So without any real standards, anyone has a right to declare himself or herself a journalist. Major media outlets also encourage it. Citizen journalism allows them to involve audiences, and it is a free source of information and video. But it is also ripe for abuse.

CNN's last YouTube Republican debate included a question from a retired general who is on Hillary Clinton's l3sbian, g@y, bisecksual and transgender steering committee. False Internet rumors about Sen. Barack Obama attending a radical Muslim school became so widespread that CNN and other news agencies did stories debunking the rumors. There are literally hundreds of Internet hoaxes and false reports passed off as true stories, tracked by sites such as snopes.com.

Having just anyone produce widely distributed stories without control can have the reverse effect from what advocates intend. It's just a matter of time before something like a faked Rodney King beating video appears on the air somewhere.

Journalism organizations should head that off. Citizen reports can be a valuable addition to news and information flow with some protections:

• Major news organizations must create standards to substantiate citizen-contributed information and video, and ensure its accuracy and authenticity.

• They should clarify and reinforce their own standards and work through trade organizations to enforce national standards so they have real meaning.

• Journalism schools such as mine at the University of Georgia should create mini-courses to certify citizen journalists in proper ethics and procedures, much as volunteer teachers, paramedics and sheriff's auxiliaries are trained and certified.

Journalists generally don't like any kind of standards or regulation. Many argue that standards could infringe on freedom of the press and journalism shouldn't be regulated.

But we have already seen the line between news and entertainment blur enough to destroy significant credibility. Continuing to do nothing as information flow changes will further erode it. Journalism organizations who choose to do nothing may soon find the line between professional and citizen journalism gone as well as the trust of their audiences.
Posted by: Gabby Cussworth || 12/13/2007 00:23 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6495 views] Top|| File under:

#1  > While it has its place, the reality is it really isn't journalism at all, and it opens up information flow to the strong probability of fraud and abuse.

You being sarcasitic aren't you!


> The news industry should find some way to monitor and regulate this new trend.

Must control information flow to the serfs!

It's the MSM that's been lieing, and people have been monitoring it. The best informend people do NOT trust the MSM news.
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 12/13/2007 6:25 Comments || Top||

#2  After the bullshit of the last 10 years, this guy has balls big enough to come in a dumptruck to suggest that citizen journalism is any less accurate or prone to abuse than the major media outlet stuff.
Posted by: bigjim-ky || 12/13/2007 6:44 Comments || Top||

#3  "Having just anyone produce widely distributed stories without control can have the reverse effect from what advocates intend. It's just a matter of time before something like a faked Rodney King beating video appears on the air somewhere."

Yeah. Or faked National Guard memos. Uh-huh.

Posted by: Dave D. || 12/13/2007 7:58 Comments || Top||

#4  Or a faked lack of famine in the USSR.
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 12/13/2007 8:07 Comments || Top||

#5  > this guy has balls big enough to come in a dumptruck

I would "rather" Fools rush in where heroes fear to tread.
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 12/13/2007 8:09 Comments || Top||

#6  But we have already seen the line between news and entertainment blur enough to destroy significant credibility.

Significant? I don't think so.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 12/13/2007 8:14 Comments || Top||

#7  "But unlike those other professions, journalism — at least in the United States — has never adopted uniform self-regulating standards."

They say this like it's a bad thing. As in "If journalism won't put its own regulation in place government will have to do it - and individuals won't qualify as journalists." I would have said the Supreme Court would call such a thing un-Constitutional, but that was before McCain-Feingold was upheld.
Posted by: Glenmore || 12/13/2007 8:31 Comments || Top||

#8  His bottom line is - "We do not trust the people". So, why has he chosen to live in a 'democracy' other than the usual benefits most parasites enjoy in living off a host?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/13/2007 8:56 Comments || Top||

#9  Ah, the Guild of Buggy Whip Makers fights back...

Either that, or this is a parody. I mean, talking about the potential of fraud and abuse from amateurs, as if we don't already see constant fraud and abuse from the "professionals"? How many fake massacre reports has the AJC printed? How many of Bilal Hussein's photos did they run? How much of Pallywood's product have they used?

Posted by: Rob Crawford || 12/13/2007 9:16 Comments || Top||

#10  While it has its place, the reality is it really isn't journalism at all, and it opens up information flow to the strong probability of fraud and abuse.

So it isn't journalism.

The news industry should find some way to monitor and regulate this new trend.

But it is somehow "the news industry" and subject to monitoring and regulation by journalists.
Posted by: Excalibur || 12/13/2007 9:28 Comments || Top||

#11  Journalists generally don't like any kind of standards or regulation.

Yeah. No shit. Thanks for that inside info...
Posted by: tu3031 || 12/13/2007 9:44 Comments || Top||

#12  It is funny to talk to "journalists" on the subject, because even though they proudly "have no ethical standards", a resolution they reach on an annual basis, they religiously adhere to their non-standards and insist there is no other way for "journalists" to behave.

In other words, their entire industry has a glass-like rigidity to change of any kind, be it in their practices or ethics, or even their business model. And this is taught in every journalism department in every university.

It is to the point of when *anyone* suggests *any* change, they put their fingers in their ears and yell "La-la-la-la-la! I can't hear you!"

What possible future could journalism face other than collapse?
Posted by: Anonymoose || 12/13/2007 9:49 Comments || Top||

#13  "Certify citizen journalists"? I got yer certification right here, pal...
Posted by: mojo || 12/13/2007 11:01 Comments || Top||

#14  CNN's last YouTube Republican debate included a question from a retired general who is on Hillary Clinton's l3sbian, g@y, bisecksual and transgender steering committee

Then the problem was with CNN. Journalist, regulate thyself.
Posted by: charger || 12/13/2007 11:16 Comments || Top||

#15  Most other professions do a poor job of self-regulation, but at least they have mechanisms to regulate themselves. Journalists do not.

Thus the rise of citizen journalism to combat the fraud and bias of the MSM. Funny how he listed as examples two events that were frauds propagated by CNN and the Clinton campaign which were quickly debunked on the Internet blogs rather than by the MSM itself.
Posted by: Whomong Guelph4611 || 12/13/2007 11:21 Comments || Top||

#16  Yeah, you amateurs keep ya noses outta where they don't belong. Leave the journalism to the professionals.
Posted by: Thge Ghost of Walter Duranty || 12/13/2007 11:31 Comments || Top||

#17  Thomas Paine is spinning in his grave.
Posted by: BrerRabbit || 12/13/2007 11:57 Comments || Top||

#18  His bio and such are here
Posted by: 3dc || 12/13/2007 13:17 Comments || Top||

#19  He owns Intelligent Media Consultants, LLC, a company responsible for training the staffs and helping to launch eight television networks around the world, mostly on the sub-continent.


These include Aaj Tak and CNN-IBN in India and GEO TV in Pakistan.

IN TOUCHISTAN! Guess his interests do not lie with the USA.

He has also consulted for broadcasters and publishers such as the Voice of America, Gramedia in Indonesia, and Alsumaria in Beirut and Baghdad. While on the faculty, Hazinski spent two years as writer, co-host and technology advisor of the internationally syndicated World Business Review with Caspar Weinberger, the Secretary of Defense under Ronald Reagan. Before coming to UGA, Hazinski served six years as an international correspondent for NBC News, covering the U.S., Europe, and Central America -- and ten years before that as a TV reporter with stations in Charlotte and Pittsburgh.
Posted by: 3dc || 12/13/2007 13:19 Comments || Top||

#20  This is as good a time as any to bring up the Rosetta Stone of media bias, Thomas M. Frank's remarkable cultural history The Conquest of Cool
Business Culture, Counterculture, and the Rise of Hip Consumerism.

This documents the symbiosis of the news media, entertainment, and advertising with the so-called youth counter-culture of the 60s and its various cultural outgrowths.
In particular, it explains the commercial incentives for the rise of an institutionalized leftist subculture within the media-industrial complex, and the reasons for that subculture's continued dominance.
Written before the rise of the blogosphere (1997), it sets the stage for today's ongoing challenge to media power.
Posted by: Dick Arbusto, CEO of Hallibushwater || 12/13/2007 13:21 Comments || Top||

#21  Perhaps Mr. Hazinski would be kind enough to sell us rubes Indulgences so we may forth and journal.
Posted by: ed || 12/13/2007 13:26 Comments || Top||

#22  No, we aren't journalists. We are citizen-reporters, attempting to conform to the old-fashioned Who/What/When/Where/Why. Not journalists, who use reports of events to shape opinions, and thus attempt to shape future events. And when we lie, if it's important enough, others amongst the citizenry demonstrate that we did so -- ever so much more effective than editorial staff. But then, the journalist in question is an associate professor in a shrinking field, so we must understand why he's upset.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/13/2007 14:13 Comments || Top||

#23  LOL, I know who Richard Arbusto is now!

:)
Hi AC!
Posted by: Thomas Woof || 12/13/2007 14:14 Comments || Top||

#24  We've got to protect our phone balony jobs! Give the editor a hurumph!

As old media and hollywood become less important-influential, they must re-make themselves into the absolute authority so the rubes everyday person voluntarily looks to them for guidence and acceptence (journalistic, social behavior, opinions).

Major news organizations must create standards to substantiate citizen-contributed information and video, and ensure its accuracy and authenticity.
But what will Green Helmut Guy do?
Posted by: swksvolFF || 12/13/2007 15:03 Comments || Top||

#25  Mr. Hazinski is the enemy. The bought and paid for propaganda arm of the Islamofacists. Of course they are going to trash the only source of real news that threatens their monopoly.
Posted by: DarthVader || 12/13/2007 16:34 Comments || Top||

#26  This line is pure garbage:

"Information without journalistic standards is called gossip"

It's right there in the story, and increasingly such ignorance in print is commonplace.

Information without journalistic standards is information. It may be unreported, or unpublicized, or unknown, but it becomes gossip when it is altered beyond recognition, by design or omission, and all too often from exactly the "journalists" so deservingly embattled these days.

Power to the Peepel!
Posted by: Glung McGurque2454 || 12/13/2007 16:42 Comments || Top||

#27  glad people are talking about this, we talked about this on blogflict today - blog.iconflict.com - this is a critical time for citizen journalists.
Posted by: Jason || 12/13/2007 17:07 Comments || Top||

#28  But we have already seen the line between news and entertainment blur enough to destroy significant credibility.

Significant? I don't think so.

I agree, there's no credibility at all.
Posted by: Redneck Jim || 12/13/2007 17:07 Comments || Top||

#29  "you amateurs keep ya noses outta where they don't belong. Leave the journalism lying to the professionals."

Fixed that for ya', #16 Ghost.
Posted by: Barbara Skolaut || 12/13/2007 19:37 Comments || Top||

#30  DAVID HAZINSKI APPARENTLY FAILED UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT THROUGH OUT HIS ENTIRE EDUCATION. DAVID HAZINSKI DOESN'T KNOW ABOUT THE FIRST AMENDMENT.

“ Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. "
Posted by: Sock Puppet of Doom || 12/13/2007 19:38 Comments || Top||

#31  Unfettered 'citizen journalism' too risky

MSM--> Out and Out Lies aside... countless :)

RE: The Fettered MSM: The list of tells and examples of biases and thundering Group Think expressed by the Main Stream Media are so long it isn't doable by any one person no matter how gifted she or he may be..

There have been hundreds of polls given to various groups of media types, journalists and Rapporteurs™ and many of them have been published!

One poll repeated every four years produces the same Shocking result! LOL! Both times back in the 90s the White House Press Corps voted for Bill Clinton nine to one!
****************

Bias, subtle, some not..

Well.. A developing story which may have a negative impact on let's say Congressman Smith and you'll notice that Rapporteurs™ & Editors will rather consistently write it up this way...

Congressman Smith, a Republican Nevada and cultural conservative, is currently disputing $50 thousand dollars in Government matching funds from last years election. *

Whereas if the perp is a Screaming Liberal demoCra'p..

Congressman Smith, Nevada, is currently disputing $50 thousand dollars in Government matching funds from last years election that he won in a huge landslide.

It is endless...

******************

[btw, * In our story the Republican also won in a landslide! ]
Posted by: RD || 12/13/2007 23:25 Comments || Top||


Africa North
Editorial: Carnage in Algiers
CAR bombs are horrific weapons. In two days, they have blasted people and property apart first in Algiers, then yesterday in Lebanon and Iraq. The obscenity of this terrorist tactic lies in the way an every-day city scene in which people are going peacefully about their lives is transformed in a split second into a picture of carnage and destruction.

Tuesday’s double blast in Algiers killed at least 30 innocent passers-by, though the final death toll will probably be higher when bodies are retrieved from wrecked buildings. This is the eighth bomb attack in Algeria this year that has been blamed on a group calling itself the Al-Qaeda in the Land of the Islamic Maghreb.

The Algerian press was loud in its condemnation of the attack and many newspapers called for the government to take stern measures against Islamic extremists. Others blamed the government for lack of security. Both charges, however, confuse the issue and tend to reinforce what can only be the terrorists’ ambition of plunging this nation back into bloody civil strife.

What Algerians need to accept is that they are being attacked from outside. The bigotry of Al-Qaeda is international and is dedicated to assaulting every civilized society that resists them. The blasts in Algiers must be seen to be on a par with those in Spain and UK, which were carried out by people who were often born and brought up in the country they attacked. The general reaction of the Spanish and British has not been to blame the communities from which the bomber came. Likewise the Algerians must not round on the Islamist politicians in their midst, implicating them in the violence.

These are wicked criminal acts. But the fact that they were almost certainly largely carried out by Algerians does not mean that they are in any way the restart of the civil conflict in which 150,000 people were slaughtered in even years. This often-brutalized country needs to keep moving away from its violent past that began when over a million died during the fight for independence from French rule. The only way to do this is to continue the process of national reconciliation launched by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in a bid to end divisions with Islamists. Dreadful though these bomb attacks may be, they cannot be allowed to deflect this peaceful campaign. In the wake of earlier bombings, there were widespread protests against the terrorists. It was notable that the demonstrators included people from all political groups in the country, not least leading Islamists who condemned utterly the outrages allegedly being perpetrated in the name of Islam.

Peace will only be assured through peaceful means. Only fanatics can wish to return to the days of bloodshed. Algerians are beginning to enjoy the benefits of eight years of relative stability and calm. They do not want to see it slip away again. If they accept that they are now under attack by an external evil rather than internal forces, it will be a little easier for them to bear these assaults.
Posted by: Fred || 12/13/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6466 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in North Africa

#1  A Saudi paper jumping to the field in order to help the people who would make from Algeria a Saudi protectorate.
Posted by: JFM || 12/13/2007 8:04 Comments || Top||

#2  The general reaction of the Spanish and British has not been to blame the communities from which the bomber came

There's a technical term for it, and it isn't "civilized".
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/13/2007 17:42 Comments || Top||


Home Front: Politix
Conservatives Laugh at Media Bias
By Quin Hillyer
If Vice President Richard Cheney died, more people would live. Bill Clinton sounds like Jesus in the Temple. And the Republican Party caused the near-deathly stroke of Democratic U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson of South Dakota.

Each year, the Media Research Center issues awards for the worst examples of bias in a nation full of outrageously leftist media. The awards, due out any day now, are a signal service to all who care about fairness in reporting. Among the entries this year are the claims recounted in the opening paragraph above. They give a sense of just how viciously conservatives are regularly attacked, and how fawningly liberals are lionized, in supposedly "mainstream" media outlets.

For about nine years now, the MRC has been kind enough to include me among the judges for its "DisHonor Awards." I can honestly say that this year's entries are the worst I've seen yet...
Posted by: Fred || 12/13/2007 11:25 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  It's true that it has become so ridiculous that it is laughable. The news announcer spewed such ridiculous talking the point the other day that several people just burst out laughing.
Posted by: Whomong Guelph4611 || 12/13/2007 11:55 Comments || Top||

#2  Geez, how did I know most of the usual suspects before I even looked?
Posted by: tu3031 || 12/13/2007 11:59 Comments || Top||


Fred Wins, Iowa Loses
Why Carolyn Washburn should keep her day job.
by Dean Barnett
THE WINNER was Fred Thompson. Fred came to play. He also had the obvious moment of the day when he took on the officious moderator, refusing to go along with one of those idiotic "raise your hands" questions. Given the hour that the debate took place, a lot of people will probably see only a highlight package of the debate. The unquestioned highlight was Fred slapping down the moderator. Even putting that aside, Fred had his best day of the campaign. He was serious, thoughtful, and authoritative. It was a wonderful day for him.

THE SILVER MEDALIST was Mitt Romney. Romney continued his fine run. Actually, the overly dry format played to his advantage. His wonkiness shines through on virtually every issue, and because there was no interplay, this debate was all about the wonkiness. His answer on education nearly broke the Luntz-o-meter.

Then there was everyone else. Huckabee was off his game. It seemed like the weight of being a frontrunner wore him down. He was overly cautious. The freewheeling jokester of past debates was but a distant memory. Rudy did alright for himself, but he had to deal with one of those "Do you still beat your wife?" questions when the moderator asked whether or not his presidential administration will be more transparent as relates to scandal than his mayoralty. And McCain assumed the Invisible Man role that Fred Thompson normally plays.

I would be remiss if I left this analysis without dedicating at least a few sentences to Alan Keyes. If moderator Washburn was Nurse Ratched, Alan Keyes was a patient who went off his meds. I'm quite confident that he broke the presidential debate record for most frequent usage of the word "womb."

To bring it full circle, Keyes's distracting presence was yet another indictment of the unworthiness of the Iowa media for the enormous role it plays in this process. Keyes isn't just a frivolous candidate for president. He's not a candidate at all. And yet he was allowed on the stage to toss bombs and to perversely whine about his lack of airtime. Thompson and Romney, alone amongst the contenders, had the good sense to use Keyes as a comic foil.
Posted by: || 12/13/2007 09:38 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6465 views] Top|| File under:

#1  WHAT ABOUT RON PAUL!!!! ????

/greenink
Posted by: Bright Pebbles || 12/13/2007 10:34 Comments || Top||

#2  We need to elect Ron Paul so he can make Bush and Cheney return that bong they stole from me.
Posted by: Abdominal Snowman || 12/13/2007 12:07 Comments || Top||

#3  (Apologies to HalfEmpty for the gag. But someone had to say it).
Posted by: Abdominal Snowman || 12/13/2007 12:09 Comments || Top||

#4  :)
Posted by: Thomas Woof || 12/13/2007 12:20 Comments || Top||

#5  Umm, where the hell is Iowa again ?
Posted by: wxjames || 12/13/2007 14:36 Comments || Top||

#6  If you haven't sen the highlights, there's a link to the AP vid at imwithfred.com.

It's worth a peek.
Posted by: Mike N. || 12/13/2007 18:19 Comments || Top||


Iraq
"The smartest people America has are in Iraq."
Jay Nordlinger, "Impromptus" @ National Review

If you follow golf at all, you probably know who David Feherty is. He’s an Irish former golf champion who now works as a commentator. And he’s charming, knowledgeable, funny — pretty much a treat. Anyway, a reader sent me an article, here, describing a trip that Feherty recently took to Iraq. Would like to quote it.

The article says that Feherty “returned from a USO tour of ‘forward operating bases’ in Iraq feeling ‘I’d be so proud to be an American, if I was one.’ Trying to hear ‘more than the official line,’ he was ‘stunned by the competence and intelligence of every single soldier we met. The smartest people America has are in Iraq.’”

Some more words from Feherty: “I was surprised by the attitude of the troopers. I would have thought they’d just want to get out of there. But the opposite is true. They all said they had a job to do. This war isn’t the disaster I was under the impression it was. . . . I would hate to be at war with America.”

Not the kind of thing you hear every day, huh? At least where I live . . .

(As for that usage of “trooper,” I don’t know — could be an Irish thing.) (Or a mistranscription.)
Posted by: Mike || 12/13/2007 12:50 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6506 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Ima thinking Nordlinger and David Feherty are right. Glad to read this as I am suffering from primary debates (?).
Posted by: JohnQC || 12/13/2007 13:02 Comments || Top||

#2  This war isn’t the disaster I was under the impression it was

does harry ried know yet?
Posted by: Abu do you love || 12/13/2007 13:35 Comments || Top||

#3  If our current crop of dunderheads leaves them a country to lead, our next generation of leaders, honed in the blast furnaces of Iraq and the 'Stans, will be absolutely unstoppable.
Posted by: Seafarious || 12/13/2007 13:55 Comments || Top||

#4  "The smartest people America has are in Iraq."
Which probably explains some of the lunacy we see here.
Posted by: James || 12/13/2007 14:00 Comments || Top||

#5  I would hate to be at war with America.

Yup. The smartest person in Ireland sounds like he was in Iraq.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 12/13/2007 14:33 Comments || Top||

#6  #3 True that, Em. True that.
Posted by: Matt || 12/13/2007 14:57 Comments || Top||

#7  The last hours of Marine boot camp are known as The Crucible, where the Corps pushes its recruits beyond and past their abilities. Those that pass become Marines.

And I bet after a tour in Iraq circa 2005-early 2007, the vets have renamed The Crucible to The Spa.
Posted by: Seafarious || 12/13/2007 15:10 Comments || Top||

#8  I would hate to be at war with America.

Not after four years of Hillary and the Donks in charge. But then that is up to the American public. Will there be anything worth fighting for by then?
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/13/2007 16:31 Comments || Top||

#9  our next generation of leaders, honed in the blast furnaces of Iraq and the 'Stans, will be absolutely unstoppable.

Would that it were true. But remember the legacy of leadership of the last Great Generation; Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush. Well, one outa seven ain't bad.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 12/13/2007 16:35 Comments || Top||

#10  Very curious observation NS - and even curiouser, IIRC the "one" had the least military background (actually none at all?!?) perhaps only rivaled by LBJ's "war experience".

Goes to show, I suppose.
Posted by: Glung McGurque2454 || 12/13/2007 16:50 Comments || Top||

#11  Our nation has really had three greatest generations so far with the fourth now in Iraq. They fight the wars that save and shape the nation and for that they get our veneration and treasure. But the act of fighting seems to so exhaust them that they have little left.

The second gave us the Civil War and then Progressivism and thereby its bastard child the New Deal. And the first won our independence, but then squandered the opportunities after Washington and Adams left office and they took over.

It's hard being the Greatest. That's why I get cranky about the adulation of them sometimes.
Posted by: Nimble Spemble || 12/13/2007 17:08 Comments || Top||

#12  NS, I'd suggest to you that there never has been a generation that to this extent combines combat experience and civil affairs experience. That young captain not only has a chestful of medals -- he's been the de facto mayor of Ramadi or Mosul. Also: we don't have a choice. This is one of those times when we must produce a Washington.
Posted by: Matt || 12/13/2007 17:35 Comments || Top||

#13  He obviously doesn't know what he's talking about. Only I know what's in the black hearts and empty minds of the American fighting man...
Posted by: John Fn Kerry || 12/13/2007 17:45 Comments || Top||

#14  It is the best of times. It is the worst of times.

It is reassuring that some of the real best and brightest have chosen the uniform. It is also unfortunate that the rest of what is suppose to constitute the 'leadership' of American's institutions is so bankrupt. The consequences for the republic are not good when the Americans upon which those who 'do' make this country see that the only body that gives a damn about the nation are those in uniform. It makes it so dangerous because the idiots out there make the choice so tempting. That's the choice the Russian people succumbed to this last week. The American model is that of our Washington and Eisenhower, to shed the uniform and to seek the public venue. However, do we have the time to make it happen before we are so jaded that such a transition can't wait? Meanwhile the idiots make ever more mischief.
Posted by: Procopius2k || 12/13/2007 19:03 Comments || Top||

#15  I really think y'all are underestimating the Millenium Generation. If the trailing daughters and their friends (both male and female) are anything to go by, our future is safe in their hands. Remember, only 5% of this generation is physically capable of passing the tests to get into the Armed Forces, but considerably more know how to spot the slanted entries in Wikipedia, and believe the Long War is about an existential threat that won't go away if we sing "Kumbaya" at it.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/13/2007 21:32 Comments || Top||

#16  Trooper = Cavalry unit.

Also, its an Irish colloquialism, which is why "Trooper" and the Garry Owen are cavalry standards - lots of Irish were in the enlisted in Cavalry in the 1800's which set the standards to which true Cav Troopers have held ever since.



Posted by: OldSpook || 12/13/2007 21:52 Comments || Top||

#17  Actually, Reagan was a Cavalry trooper. He was in the reserves prior to WW2 but made training films during the war. Apparently hs poor hearing made him inelligble for combat. For this reason, I read he turned down a promotion.

At his funeral procession, they had his boots in the stirrups of a riderless horse.
Posted by: JAB || 12/13/2007 23:01 Comments || Top||

#18  The riderless horse is traditional protocol for a presidential funeral, IIRC.
Posted by: Mike || 12/13/2007 23:14 Comments || Top||


Olde Tyme Religion
Another "Just So" Story?
by Andrew G. Bostom
Posted by: Fred || 12/13/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under: Global Jihad

#1  This is making me suspicious, being a story about a story about what he said. Unless I'm confusing Bernard with Carl or somebody, the quote conflicts with Lewis' previous writing.

My guess is Lewis was talking about the rise of the Baath party and the original reporter mangled the concept. Wouldn't that be unprecedented! I'd like to see an actual transcript of the speech before I pass judgment.
Posted by: SteveS || 12/13/2007 12:09 Comments || Top||

#2  We had this here yesterday. There was much debate as to just what the hell Lewis was talking about. Some people (like me) tended more toward your interpretation.
Posted by: Angie Schultz || 12/13/2007 12:43 Comments || Top||

#3  The authoritarianism present in the Middle East region is not part of the Arab and Muslim tradition, but it has been imported from Europe

Whhattttttt is this guy saying and why?
Posted by: JohnQC || 12/13/2007 20:32 Comments || Top||

#4  JohnQC, I read it yesterday that Professor Lewis is claiming the Arabs chose to get drunk on National Socialism (whether secular or Islamist) and Nazi antisemitic tales and goals.
Posted by: trailing wife || 12/13/2007 21:41 Comments || Top||


Syria-Lebanon-Iran
Double jeopardy
Some choice quotes
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's grand entrance into the Gulf Cooperation Council's annual summit in Doha, Qatar last week was a remarkable moment. With a broad smile, the Iranian leader entered the main foyer walking hand in hand with his unlikely host, Saudi leader King Abdullah who probably would have been happier had his Iranian guest accidentally tripped, hit his head, and died on the spot.

...Now, for Arab Sunni Gulf States who are worried about Iran's ascendancy under a nuclear umbrella, the National Intelligence Estimate underscores growing confusion, disunity and discord in Washington.

...Professor Bernard Lewis, the world's leading scholar on Islam and the Near East, has long reminded the West that Arab political culture runs with the winning horse.

THIS IS the also the context in which the recent US hosted Annapolis conference should be considered. Instead of pressing for victory against Iran, Bush's summoning much of the international community to Washington to advance Palestinian-Israeli peace and to send a message to Iran was likely perceived somewhat differently in the Middle East.

In the context of Lewis's "winning horse" analogy, Bush in the Arab and Persian mind may have appeared more like the school weakling who needed to turn to the rest of the class to back him opposite the class bully, in this case the 120 pound Ahmadinejad.

So with the US National Intelligence Estimate weakening US diplomatic efforts to mobilize the international community against Teheran, Arab states prefer to mingle with Iranian power rather than risk American uncertainty.

Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 12/13/2007 12:05 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6457 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Barbaro was a winning horse. So was Ruffian.
Anybody remember what happened to them?
Posted by: tu3031 || 12/13/2007 18:18 Comments || Top||

#2  so was Khartoum
Posted by: Frank G || 12/13/2007 19:47 Comments || Top||

#3  LMAO Frank!

It's high time someone reminded Amadjihadi - and the Saudis - what happened to Khartoum too. Do we still have Saddam's head?
Posted by: ryuge || 12/13/2007 20:06 Comments || Top||



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Two weeks of WOT
Thu 2007-12-13
  Leb car boom murders top general
Wed 2007-12-12
  Qaeda in North Africa claims Algiers blasts
Tue 2007-12-11
  Taliban abandons Musa Qala
Mon 2007-12-10
  al-Abssi is in Syria and Fatah al-Isalm is in Gaza
Sun 2007-12-09
  Fierce battle rages for Taliban stronghold
Sat 2007-12-08
  Berri postpones Lebanon presidential election to Tuesday
Fri 2007-12-07
  Pak troops capture Mullah Fazlullah's base
Thu 2007-12-06
  Suicide attack on army bus in Kabul kills 16
Wed 2007-12-05
  Somali leader taken to hospital
Tue 2007-12-04
  Abu Maysara Positively Deader Than a Rock
Mon 2007-12-03
  40 Taliban killed, 14 held in Afghanistan
Sun 2007-12-02
  Walkout in Iraq parliament over Sunni leader raid
Sat 2007-12-01
  Binny: Euroleaders 'like living under shadow of White House'
Fri 2007-11-30
  Perv Sworn In as Civilian President
Thu 2007-11-29
  Perv finally quits army

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