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4 Americans murdered in Gaza
Today's Headlines
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Page 1: WoT Operations
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-Short Attention Span Theater-
Will They Return The Boots?
Before they had Jehadis or Maoists there were cannibals.
The inhabitants of a remote Fiji mountain village, whose ancestors killed and ate an English missionary 136 years ago, are to offer a traditional apology to his descendants. Thomas Baker, of the London Missionary Society, was killed by the people of Navatusila in 1867, after he took a comb out of a chief’s hair. It was and still is forbidden to touch the head of a chief. He was subsequently cooked and eaten. One of the villagers, who took part in the feast, was quoted in contemporary accounts as saying "we ate everything but his boots". The Pacific Islands News Association reports the district chief has invited Reverend Baker’s descendants to the ceremony.
I would pass on the cookout.
The tribe believes they have been cursed for what their forefathers did.
Cursed to work for the UN as peacekeepers.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 3:07:10 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

Another cork scandal, this time with Brainless Joe Jackson
From ScrappleFace
(2003-10-15) -- For the second time this season a corking scandal has rocked the Chicago Cubs in the wake of their improbable 8-3 loss last night to the Florida Marlins. This time a fan is the target of the investigation.

An unidentified Cubs fan, who snatched a foul ball away from the outstretched glove of Chicago left-fielder Moises Alou, is under investigation for allegedly having a head full of cork. The foiled foul catch marked a turning point in the game, which the Cubs had led 3-0 to that point. They were just five outs away from the World Series.

"No one with a brain in his head would cheat his own team from making an out," said an unnamed spokesman for Major League Baseball. "We suspect that most, or all of the fan’s cranium has been hollowed out and filled with cork."

Earlier this year, Cubs slugger Sammy Sosa was suspended for using a cork-filled baseball bat.

One expert said that cork-filled crania are a growing problem among baseball fans, but this is the first time during the 2003 post-season that the epidemic has affected the outcome of a game.

"Fans like the cork because it makes their heads lighter, and leaves them untroubled by thoughts of personal responsibility," said the expert.

Numerous physicians, who are Cubs fans, have offered to remove the cork from the unidentified man’s head, possibly through his nostrils.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 1:21:27 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Please change "Shoeless" to "Brainless"
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 13:27 Comments || Top||

#2  Good idea. Reads better that way.
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 13:33 Comments || Top||

#3  And, seeing that Joe's been dead since 1951, it makes more sense too.
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 14:02 Comments || Top||

#4  Silent Running is a bit upset over the Cubs loss:
Security had to escort the fan that got in the way out of the stadium. The best thing he can do is pack all his shit, and move as far away from Chicago, tonight, as possible. He might want to get a police escort. From someone beside the Chicago cops. Paraguay might work, better yet he might want to look for a rental under an assumed name in Madagascar, and hope no one recognizes him. Hope he got to keep that fucking baseball, so he can look at it every day for the rest of his miserable, miserable, pathetic excuse for a life, and realize what the hell he did tonight.
See, this is the big difference between Cubs and Red Sox fans.
Every spring Cubs fans think "Maybe this will be the year".
Red Sox fans think "Ok, how are they gonna blow it this year?"

Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 14:06 Comments || Top||

#5  It was tough to watch: Alou's glove was right there. But Prior and rest of team didn't overcome this piece of adversity; Cubs were still up 3-0, 1 out and 3-2 on Castillo. The rest of the meltdown we saw. Let's say "corkhead" was a precursor to disaster, not the cause. Overall, however, I'm still optimistic. Now that the shock has dissipated, there is still tonight's game and if Cubs don't win, well, then we didn't deserve the pennant.
Posted by: Michael || 10/15/2003 14:20 Comments || Top||

#6  1) I haven't seen this kid's name yet; has it been made public?
2) Think he's going to tonight's game? :-)
Posted by: Raj || 10/15/2003 14:53 Comments || Top||

#7  The guys name is Steve Bartman check out the smoking gun. Poor bastard.
Posted by: Mike || 10/15/2003 15:02 Comments || Top||

#8  "Think he's going to tonight's game? :-)"

If he's smart, he's already in Michigan, on his way to New York and a flight to Fiji...
Posted by: mojo || 10/15/2003 15:09 Comments || Top||

#9  I blame Alex Gonzalez for muffing a potential double-play ball, actually.

That there were 8 or so folks all with gloves outstretched goes to show that if it wasn't this guy it could well have been another.

Posted by: eLarson || 10/15/2003 16:53 Comments || Top||

#10  Well, the Cubs got hammered. Drat.
Posted by: Korora || 10/15/2003 23:39 Comments || Top||

I’ve Never Tried This Excuse
A visiting professor at the University of Nebraska was in jail Wednesday for allegedly trying to sexually assault a female student who, the professor said, had `asked for it’ because of the way she was dressed. Authorities confirmed that Debasis Chaudhuri, 41, was arrested Sunday. The university said he had been relieved of teaching assignments. Police reports say Chaudhuri said he lost control of himself because of the way the young woman was dressed. He blamed her for the incident. The student said she resisted Chaudhuri as he fondled here and then tried to remove her underwear. The incident occurred Oct. 9 when the student went to Chaudhuri’s office to talk about her grades. Chaudhuri, 41, is a visiting professor in computer engineering from India. He is scheduled to appear in court Oct. 28. He is charged with attempted first-degree sexual assault and with first-degree false imprisonment. The latter charge has to do with holding someone against their will.
Posted by: Tornado || 10/15/2003 1:14:14 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  If only he'd played hoops for the Lakers, it would've been her fault
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 13:50 Comments || Top||

#2  Doesn't appear they're real big on the Sensitivity Training in Inja, does it???
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 14:08 Comments || Top||

#3  Several years ago I attended my little sister's graduation at Mount Holyoke. Chaudhuri would have died in his office.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 15:01 Comments || Top||

#4  The story doesn't say, is everyone assuming he's a Hindu? Mebbe he's a Muslim - and that would explain it - or mebbe he's just borrowing their gig.

"...'asked for it’ because of the way she was dressed..."

This is the standard Muslim male excuse - and this behavior is not uncommon towards Western-dressed females (or those who don't cover according to the local norms) in Sharia societies. The poor myn are not responsible, if they can claim with some measure (in a mutawa's mind) that they were tempted. In Saudi, the mutawas would probably agree with him and blame this woman. The whore prolly looked pretty good - and that's just not right that she should look good and he doesn't get any... The bitch!

I don't have access to a search facility on the Haddiths, where the real action is, and found only this lonely entry in the Suras of the Koran...
Sura 4 --
15. If any of your women are guilty of lewdness, Take the evidence of four (Reliable) witnesses from amongst you against them; and if they testify, confine them to houses until death do claim them, or Allah ordain for them some (other) way.

I guess he forgot the part about rounding up his posse for a gangbang witnesses and decided to issue his own version of justice... Allah, may bees pee upon him, is prolly pissed - he knows all, and he reserves the right to handle the punishment stuff. He's sorta kinky, that way.
Posted by: .com || 10/15/2003 15:41 Comments || Top||

#5  The story doesn't say, is everyone assuming he's a Hindu? Mebbe he's a Muslim

Both Debasis and Chaudhuri are Indian (Hindu or some other non-Muslim religion) names, without exception. Indian Muslims typically have Arab names - having an Arab name is part of being Muslim, which is why there are so many non-Arab guys running around with these names.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 10/15/2003 22:10 Comments || Top||

#6  Cassius Clay, Lew Alcindor, Cat Stevens, etc - I get it... Apologies to Indians and Hindus if I offended. Now clean up your mess...

Before I had encountered Islam as it's actually practiced, not the one in the adverts, I had always wondered about men who use this ploy. Just how gutless and lame can a guy get? I'd say this is it. Now I've seen an entire "society" that condones such behavior.

O/T: I wonder when Will Smith will become Mohammed Muhammed Mohammad? Mebbe, as Paul Simon sez, we can just call him Al...
Posted by: .com || 10/15/2003 23:50 Comments || Top||

Man - 1, Grizzly - 0
James Beeman picked up a .410-gauge shotgun when he went outside his Fortine-area home to investigate a commotion from his chicken coop around 4 a.m. Sunday. Wearing a headlamp and expecting a skunk, Beeman saw two bear cubs run from the damaged door of the chicken coop. Then an adult grizzly bear emerged with a chicken in its mouth.
"Holy shit....."
The bear dropped the chicken and charged from 15 feet. Beeman fired, with the muzzle of the gun roughly three feet from the bear, which crumpled to ground, dead at Beeman’s feet.
Next to his soiled underwear.
It turned out to be an astounding shot, considering a .410 is a light gun and the shell contained a light load typically used for quail hunting. But it hit the bear squarely in the nose, the only soft, vulnerable place on a grizzly skull. Pellets likely penetrated the length of the nasal cavity to the brain. The wad from the shell was imbedded in the bear’s nose.
Note to Mr. Beeman - buy lottery ticket. And a 12 gauge.
"What’s the likelihood of that?" said Ed Kelly, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks warden captain in Kalispell. "I know guys with .375s who couldn’t have made a kill like that. He’s just a lucky, lucky guy."
Amen to that!
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 12:04:24 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6458 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Actually, it should be Man - 1 Grizzly - 1 if you're keeping a running tally. Ol' Treadwell gave the grizzlies an early lead. :)
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 12:34 Comments || Top||

#2  ...or Man - 1, Grizzly - 2 (Treadwell, Huguenard).
Posted by: Raj || 10/15/2003 12:44 Comments || Top||

#3  I would go with the over on this bet. There are more wolves, coyotes and bears coming showing up in places they haven't been for years. Had a mound of coyotes in my back yard several years ago ... in Kentucky. Didn't see the roadrunner, though.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 12:51 Comments || Top||

#4  I can sympathize with Mr. Beeman. Being attacked by a wild animal at close range is a terrifying event. I was almost trampled by a large buck the day before deer season opened with I was 16. I had nowhere to go, the deer had nowhere to go but through me. I cut loose with three shots from a Browning 16-gauge at about 12 feet. The deer dropped at my feet. All three #6 shot loads - including wadding - were imbedded in the throat and neck of that deer. I still have nightmares about that at least once a year.

Glad Mr. Beeman was lucky. We've lost a few homeowners here in Colorado over the years, and to black bears, a bit smaller than Grizzlies. Last year, we even lost an experienced hunter to a wounded elk.

Like the saying goes, "sometimes the dragon wins".
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 12:53 Comments || Top||

#5  I hear ya Old Patriot. I wuz once attacked by a killer rabbit. Luckily I had a concealed paddle.
Posted by: Jimmuh || 10/15/2003 13:01 Comments || Top||

#6  Since Fred's watchbill says I am the designated PAOOD (PETA Activist of the Day), I'm forced to ask the following question.

What happened to the poor little orphaned bear cubs?
Posted by: Penguin || 10/15/2003 13:08 Comments || Top||

#7  Ask and ye shall receive, Penguin:
Warden Jim Roberts and Tim Manley, the grizzly bear management specialist in Northwest Montana, have been pursuing the bear's two cubs-of-the-year. At one point, the cubs were chased high up a tree, too high to dart with sedatives because of the risk of them being hurt in a fall.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 13:46 Comments || Top||

#8  Now why doesn't the Rachel Corrie 2-Dimensional Peace Brigade attempt to face these bears? Just go onto Induhmedia and call them zionists…
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 13:48 Comments || Top||

#9  What happened to the poor little orphaned bear cubs?

figured this was another baseball-related story for a second
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 13:52 Comments || Top||

#10  Grizzly bears: Why do they hate us?
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 14:28 Comments || Top||

#11  Rather: What did WE do to make them hate us?

Posted by: Anonymous || 10/15/2003 14:34 Comments || Top||

#12  I had a big black bear walking around a chain link fence in my son's chicken yard figuring how to get in and snatch some chickens for lunch. One of his chickens (a golden comet hen named Henrietta) stood her ground 3 ft from the fence and was jumping up and down and screaming at the bear (in her chicken voice). The other hens headed for the coop. When all the others were safe, Henrietta headed for the coop. That hen had more cojones than most people.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 15:13 Comments || Top||

#13  I say boy! I'm not a chicken, I'm a bear. A grizzly that is.
Posted by: Foghorn Leghorn || 10/15/2003 17:20 Comments || Top||

#14  Alaska Paul

A truly remarkable story. That hen had more cojones
than most women. Sorry, I learned Spanish when I
was four and simply couln't resist.
Posted by: JFM || 10/15/2003 17:34 Comments || Top||

#15  The bear dropped the chicken and charged from 15 feet. Beeman fired, with the muzzle of the gun roughly three feet from the bear, which crumpled to ground, dead at Beeman’s feet.

Guy probably played a lot of Doom to develop reactions like that (but you really ought to use the chainsaw against demons...)
Posted by: snellenr || 10/15/2003 18:10 Comments || Top||

#16  Yeah, JFM, the rest of the story...

My son's shetland sheep accidently stepped on Henrietta's foot, so the hen got lame. The other chickens started mercilessly pecking Henrietta and we found here a bloody pulp. We nursed her back to health in the garage, but she lost the will to live. Gave her a funeral and left her in the tall grass. The neighbor's dog found her and there were feathers and bones from here to sunday. So ends my sad story from Ma Nature....
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 18:43 Comments || Top||

#17  I have seen Grizzlies in the Alaska wild. If they are hungry, they'll kill you. If you frighten them, they'll kill you. If you look them in the eyeballs, they'll kill you. If they are with their young, they'll kill you. That's why gun control isn't talked about much in the frigid state.
Posted by: Imam Hotep Bejesus || 10/15/2003 19:13 Comments || Top||

#18  Raj: Treadwell and Huguenard were killed by brown bears, not grizzlies. Jeesh, I didn't know there were grizzlies in Montana.
Posted by: Jabba the Nutt || 10/15/2003 20:48 Comments || Top||

#19  Jabba - don't you watch all those National Geographic specials about people feeding the Grizzlies in Yellowstone? The upper 10% of Yellowstone is in Montana. There are some pretty tall, empty mountains all along the western third of the state. What's really scary is that a guy spotted what he claims was a grizzly (photos are a bit fuzzy, but sure looks like a grizzly to me) on the Front Range near Evergreen. We're talking major urbanized mountains, with several thousand people per square mile. Not quite as nerve-wracking as the lady that lost two English sheep dogs to a cougar on the EAST side of Colorado Springs, but it sure makes me nervous!
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 21:22 Comments || Top||

#20  Raj: grizzly bear is what they call a brown bear when it lives along the Alaskan coastline -- same species, Ursus arctos. The brown bears on Kodiak island are a distinct subspecies, due to their isolation. Useful reading can be found at this location (Alaska Department of Fisheries & Game).
Posted by: snellenr || 10/15/2003 21:44 Comments || Top||

Jihadi martial arts
Opinion, from Gandalf...
It seems that westerners are always searching for spirituality. For years now, many are into the pop versions of Asian religions and philosophies. They preach a lot of good things too: hone your mind, improve your body, mind over matter, self confidence. The ideal person according to this pop culture is the lone warrior fighting against all odds using ancient techniques secretly preserved by monks. It’s in all the martial arts movies made over the years.

Sadly, after the September 11th attacks, there has been a rising interest in Islam, coming mainly from the bleeding heart, blame America first, youth. There is something very appealing about the spirituality of complete submission. Groupthink, lack of individual responsibility. That must be why the totalitarial regimes in the past century had a lot of popular support.

But here is the really scary thought: Imagine, God forbid, that Islam spreads through the West. What will martial arts movies look like then? Instead of samurai and nunchakus, you’ll see young mujahids pelting people with stones, or better yet shahids selflessly blowing themselves up to liberate Spain. Of course, it will all be highly stylized, with crying widows and pretty suicide belts. What an edge-of-the-seat tear-jerker.
Interesting observation, especially about the appeal of groupthink and the lack of individual responsibility. And mildly amusing.

I've been thinking lately of adding a separate page for opinion and maybe another one for politix. Or maybe leaving them on the main page, under those headings. Any opinions?
Posted by: || 10/15/2003 6:14:35 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6457 views] Top|| File under:

#1  WTF? news "source"?
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 11:04 Comments || Top||

#2  I don't see it happening. For an action flick you need continuous violence. If you watch professional wrestling, you'll see that the actual pin is a small part of the entire show. There is the slepper hold, suplex, atomic drop and attack with the folding chair before climax. A suicide bomber moves right to the climax. Can't see that you could spend the rest of 2 hours of film on charecter development of an insane guy.
Faulker might be able to write an interesting scrip that could be directed by Hitchock. I would expect that Hopper a would make a better crack at it than Stone. They could give Mel Brooks the project.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 11:05 Comments || Top||

#3  Bruce Lee in Enter The Mosque doesn't quite work for me...
Posted by: Raj || 10/15/2003 12:03 Comments || Top||

#4  "Bruce Lee in Enter The Mosque doesn't quite work for me..."

Oh, but just close your eyes and picture Bruce Lee kicking and punching his way through a crowd of turban-wearing, sword waving thugs, leaving them writhing in pain, and then ripping a mullahs heart out and showing it to him before he drops. That works for me.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 12:33 Comments || Top||

#5  Fred, my belief with respect to the WOT is that hearts and minds are critically important here in the US as well as in other Western countries. If we are not convinced ourselves that we are doing the right thing, why should the Iraqis be convinced. Our lack of national unity often sends the wrong message to leaders like Chavez and Sadaam.
That said - there are many other blogs and outlets for opinion and politics. Maintaining editorial control of the pertinence of the opinions is critical.
For instance, I disagree with some of the critcism of the Archbishop of Cantebury yesterday. I agree with his statement that a viewpoint is not logically false just because it is being spouted by a flake, kook or sociopath. I remain pro-life even though Eric Rudoulph is supposedly prolife also.
That said - I am not spending this morning combing for a news artcle on the Archbishop with some WOT appeal that I can parlay into continuing the discussion from yesterday - which I have slyly done. Neither would your blog be the place for material on the Culture Wars - unless it is extremely funny material - like that lazy mans spankifier from the other night. That was outstanding.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 12:46 Comments || Top||

#6  Oh, but just close your eyes and picture Bruce Lee kicking and punching his way through a crowd of turban-wearing, sword waving thugs

I've always preferred the Indiana Jones solution to scenes like that.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 12:57 Comments || Top||

#7  I've always preferred the Indiana Jones solution to scenes like that.
Personally, I prefer to remain OUT of scenes like that. When the turban-wearing, sword-swinging nutcases get high on white slag and start their wild thing in support of Juche, I prefer either a Buff loaded with AP weapons, or a pair of Spectres orbiting the center-point, with all weapons loaded to the max.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 21:26 Comments || Top||

’Taleban fighters killed in raid’
US and Afghan government forces are said to have killed at least seven Taleban fighters in a raid in central Afghanistan. A police spokesman said three Afghan soldiers also died and five were injured in the clashes. The fighting lasted for two days in the mountainous Chaar Cheno region of the central province of Uruzgan, once a Taleban stronghold. The Afghan police spokesman, Haji Mohammed Akhtar, had said on Tuesday that the Afghan unit had been facing tough resistance by about 100 members of the Taleban. It is not clear what happened to the remaining fighters although one report quoted an unnamed official as saying they had escaped.
Got them on the run, keep the pressure on.
"The Taleban forces overnight escaped because they could not resist the fighting and now American soldiers are conducting house-to-house searches to find out if any Taleban members are hidden among ordinary people," the official was quoted. About 500 Afghan soldiers armed with heavy machine-guns, assault rifles and rocket launchers took part in the raid.
Nice going.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 8:55:09 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Make enough of the kevlar plates to outfit the Afghanistani army. These guys are getting whacked too much. It's bad for morale.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 11:06 Comments || Top||

#2  US and Afghan government forces are said to have killed at least seven Taleban fighters
With apologies to the original author, all I want to say is, "more, please!".
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 13:00 Comments || Top||

Yemeni Police Arrest Two Men With Explosives
Yemeni police have arrested two men and seized nine suitcases full of explosives in the southeastern town of Hadramout, a security official said Wednesday. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the arrest took place Saturday after a tip. Both men are under investigation, the official said. One of the men is a contractor and the other owns a dry-cleaning shop. No other details were available.
"We can say no more"
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 4:41:08 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6467 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Excessive baggage charges will get you every time. Especially if you try to pay with old Iraqi bills with Saddam's picture on them.
Posted by: Baba Yaga || 10/15/2003 18:16 Comments || Top||

#2  The contractor probably has some use for explosives, but for the dry cleaner... I don't care how bad the stain was. No explosives. And I'm not buying that it's an Ancient Yemeni Secret.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 18:54 Comments || Top||

#3  Have you noticed that in ancient hebrew (a semitic language) Hadramout is spelled "Hatzarmavet" which translates roughly into "the death yard".
I wonder is there something we dont get here ?
I also recommend a hebrew crash course to the Yemen security employees (and while we're at it, why not a course in Yiddish ??)
Posted by: The Dodo || 10/16/2003 5:48 Comments || Top||

Yemeni cleric campaigns to soften hardliners
A moderate Yemeni cleric is leading a campaign to fight Islamic hardliners with a message of peace and tolerance in one of the hotbeds of religious activism.
Well, he's toast...
Umar bin Hafeed is one of the five leading scholars in Yemen helping a government drive to "re-educate" hardliners, mainly prisoners held for planning attacks on Western and Yemeni targets. Hafeed, who teaches at the Dar al-Mustafa Centre for Islamic Research in the eastern Yemeni town of Tarim, said Islam had greatly suffered from acts such as the September 11 attacks. "Islamic militancy has not only created a gap between the West and Islam, but has caused an even greater split within the Muslim community itself," he said in an interview on Tuesday. "It has come to a point where Muslims are now afraid of each other," he said.
Even the barely rational fear the irrational...
Hafeed said the "re-education" campaign employed tapes and other media to persuade activists to abandon violence, as well as discussions about the interpretation of the Quran. "They are violating scriptures. The Prophet opened his town and mosque to people of all religions. Even when he held power over other people, he tolerated them," said Hafeed. Hafeed said the gap between the West and Muslims could only be bridged through respect for each other's differences. "We need to work to spread the understanding of tolerance and respect for opinions," he said.
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/15/2003 14:20 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6458 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Slowly rounding the corner...
Posted by: Dishman || 10/15/2003 14:36 Comments || Top||

#2  How long will this guy will last before he's bumped off by the "hardliners"? Any predictions?
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 16:38 Comments || Top||

#3  I hope he lasts a long time. Predicting would just be depressing.
Posted by: OminousWhatever || 10/15/2003 17:11 Comments || Top||

Love those New York Post headlines. EFL:
Saudi Arabia recently handed over at least three American fugitives wanted on terrorism charges, U.S. officials said yesterday. The case was shrouded in secrecy yesterday, and U.S. officials would not identify the three American citizens. But a U.S. official told The Post one of the fugitives was recently convicted on terrorism charges in Virginia.
So, it wasn’t a recent transfer. It might be these guys:
In Washington, a Saudi official noted that three Americans were arrested this past summer and turned over to U.S. authorities. The three - Seifullah Chapman, Khwaja Mahmood Hasan and Sabri Benkhala — were charged with conspiring to join a Muslim extremist terror group blamed for thousands of deaths in the disputed Kashmir territory of India and Pakistan. It was not immediately clear whether these three men were the terror suspects the interior minister was referring to in his remarks.
The transfer was disclosed by Saudi Interior Minister Prince Nayef in remarks published in the Saudi Press Agency yesterday. A U.S. foreign-policy official confirmed there was a recent transfer of a handful of terror suspects but provided few other details. The FBI has several cases pending against suspected terrorists who may have been plotting U.S. attacks, and some are believed to have fled before they could be arrested.
There’s one of the Portland Seven still at large and I believe one of the NY Lakawannabe group, if he’s still alive.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 9:57:22 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  There's also Karim Garcia and Jeff Nelson. Friggin' Yanks!
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 11:15 Comments || Top||

#2  Don "the chipmunk" Zimmer as well. He's pretty fiesty though, I wouldn't send the religious police after him. Go with the SWAT unit.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 12:53 Comments || Top||

#3  I've been waiting since '78 for someone to roll The Gerbil's fat ass. Pedro won't get any shit from me...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 13:20 Comments || Top||

#4  Go Yanks!

It's not the chipmunks who are rabid -- just be careful about the Red Sox fans who are frothing at the mouth lately.

Ya know, they really shouldn'ta traded the Babe. Just goes ta show .....
Posted by: rkb || 10/15/2003 13:28 Comments || Top||

#5  "Red Sox fans who are frothing at the mouth"
That's not froth, it's the foam from the beer that we are crying into....again!
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 13:50 Comments || Top||

#6  Allah has granted Pedro a nom de guerre of Abu JewTosser

Posted by: Shipman || 10/15/2003 14:50 Comments || Top||

Saudi Arabia Arrests 150 Protesters
Saudi police arrested up to 150 people for staging a rare public protest in the capital to call for reforms in the conservative Islamic kingdom, the interior minister said Wednesday. Tuesday’s protest in central Riyadh was the first such large-scale demonstration in a kingdom that has been under internal and external pressure to reform. After demonstrators blocked traffic, police fired tear gas and moved in, arresting "no more than 150 individuals who gathered carrying banners," the interior minister, Prince Nayef, told the official Saudi Press Agency. Witnesses had said there were hundreds of protesters, men and women, most of them young.
Those who want change usually are.
"What happened was just a limited gathering in al-Olaya street," Nayef told the agency. "They are a small bunch ... this won’t happen again."
Don’t bet on it.
Saudi Arabia’s chief cleric Grand Mufti Abdul-Aziz bin Abdullah Al al-Sheik condemned the illegal protests in comments published in a Saudi daily Wednesday, saying people with complaints should take them to government officials, not to the streets. Al-Sheik told Al-Jazeera newspaper that the protests were "chaotic acts" that "do not represent our pious society."
Maybe they’re tired of being told they have to be pious?
On Monday, the government announced it would hold the kingdom’s first-ever elections, a vote to select members of 14 municipal councils.
Anyone doubt the vote is rigged?
Tuesday’s protest appeared to be in response to repeated calls for political and economic reforms by the London-based Movement for Islamic Reform in Arabia. The group, founded in 1996, is one of the better known dissident groups, bringing together a number of Saudi intellectuals to support a more liberal, moderate system of government.
Can’t have that, it wouldn’t be holy.
I guess that's what the press releases say. I thought MIRA was bitching because the Soddies aren't rigous enough in their implementation of Islamic law?
Saudi Arabia does not have a constitution or elected legislature. Public gatherings to discuss political or social issues are illegal, and writers and editors are often banned or fired over articles deemed offensive to the country’s powerful religious establishment.
The beginning of a movement or just a isolated incident? While the Saudi mullahs have the religious police, I don’t think the royals will let them become as powerful as the thugs the Iranian mullahs have. Too much a threat.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 9:13:11 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I think it is the start of a movement. Unfortunately SA will have to go through 20 years of rule under a mullahcracy just like Iran.

Dammit, seize the oilfields right after the princes fall and let the mullahs have all the sand and holy sites they want.
Posted by: Craig || 10/15/2003 9:31 Comments || Top||

#2  I hope for the sake to those 150 arrested that they have no fires in jail. Cooking the opposition in a crossbar oven is inhumane. A.I. are ya watching out for these people's human rights? [hard drive and cooling fan noise]. Thought so.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 10:59 Comments || Top||

#3  Of course it's rigged. Half the populace can neither run nor vote nor drive to the polling places.
Posted by: Eric Jablow || 10/15/2003 12:46 Comments || Top||

Reuters revamped - layoffs imminent
Yes, this is old news, but it’s good to see change at Reuters. As a Reuters shareholder, I am delighted at the cost cuts at this money-losing division. As a private citizen, I am happy to hear that an American has been appointed head honcho of the Reuters news division.
Reuters Group PLC is shaking up its editorial department, The Financial Times reports on its Web site Monday. According to the report, the global head of news, Stephen Jukes, is leaving effective immediately, and more than a dozen other editors and managers will lose their jobs or be redeployed.
Or in Rooters style, "more than a dozen other 'editors' and 'managers' will 'lose their jobs'"...
Reuters declined to comment on the cost or the exact number of redundancies. The changes follow a decision to integrate management of news and data services, according to the report. David Schlesinger, the head of North American editorial operations, will become head of news, and the management structure beneath him will be simplified, the report said.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 10/15/2003 11:35:44 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "I'm sorry, Jennifer, but you're quote fired close quote."

"Jack, remember the quote Christmas party close quote? I'm going to quote sue your ass close quote."
Posted by: Matt || 10/15/2003 12:50 Comments || Top||

#2  I guess Reuters wants to improve their 'profit'.
Posted by: mhw || 10/15/2003 12:52 Comments || Top||

#3  Throw the bums out!
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 12:59 Comments || Top||

#4  And here's the skinny on the new guy, David Schlesinger:

Uh oh, his email address is lefty@apple.com - no kidding. I hope he's left-handed... He was a founder of a UseNet NewsGroup and, well, you can find it on this page:

I guess his stint in China made its mark...
Posted by: .com || 10/15/2003 15:57 Comments || Top||

#5  Another victory for our International Zionist-Lizardoid Media Conspiracy! Buwahhaaahhhaaaa!
Now we must shift our subversion and harrassment to lesser elements of the Idiotarian Axis. How about Al Guardian for starters?
Posted by: Anonymous || 10/15/2003 20:21 Comments || Top||

Schroeder sees powerful EU, UN
The German Chancellor, Gerhard Schroeder, has said that the European Union will come to play a more important role in world affairs despite its divisions over Iraq. Speaking to the German parliament, he said the EU must speak with one voice in the future, and gave details of a new Franco-German proposal for a European defence and security policy.
[Yawn] Will someone please remind me why the EU must speak with one voice. And not just because Schroeder and his ilk say so. And must that voice speak in French, or German.
He said the European Union must have its own military capability - though it ought not to be in rivalry with Nato.
Double check that with Belgium/France.
At the same time, Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer has called for core groups of EU countries to press ahead with integration if EU-wide agreement cannot be reached. "Europeans must agree on more common ground within the EU treaties," Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer was quoted as saying by the business daily Handelsblatt.
[Yawn] Must again. Why must we? Has someone been bad?
"If that doesn’t work, then - if necessary - a group of countries should go ahead as they did with the Schengen Accord, outside the treaties." He added: "There’s an old ground rule in the EU: No-one has to want to do things, but those who do want to must be able to."
Hang on, we must, but only if we want to? Is something being lost in the translation here?
The BBC’s Ray Furlong in Berlin says the German vision is one of a stronger Europe in the face of current US dominance.
No rivalry here then. Move along, please.
He said that more common ground had to be found, especially with countries closer to the US position on Iraq. "The degree of cooperation between [Germany and France] countries is one of the few welcome developments in the current situation," he said.
Gerhard, lashing yourself to a sinking ship is not something to cheer about.
"But it is equally clear that, without close cooperation with Britain and the other members, we will be unable to bear the international responsibility that is rightly expected of us."
If Germany can’t bear taking responsibility for her own foreign policy, that’s for Germany to deal with. There was plenty of disagreement within Europe over Iraq and it’s more than likely that there will be plenty more issues that we won’t agree on in the future. Think Europe must put on a united face because someone else expects it? Give us a break.
Mr Schroeder said the UN must have a monopoly on the use of force and that proliferation of weapons of mass destruction could only be dealt with multilaterally.
How long’s he got, again, TGA?
Then, he outlined proposals he has made with President Jacques Chirac of France for an enhanced EU defence and security policy. These include the prospect of common military capabilities, such as European units implementing UN peacekeeping operations instead of national armies, and closer co-operation in planning structures and the arms industry.
Besides being every federast’s Eurocorps wet dream, this presumably also means Europe trying to get away with an even smaller military than it already finances.
On foreign affairs, EU ministers should decide on many joint initiatives by qualified majority voting, he said - a shift away from national policy-making.
The EU: your nation’s local lobotomy service
Posted by: Bulldog || 10/15/2003 5:19:04 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6466 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Monopoly on the use of force for the UN? Something palatable when you have a tiny underfunded army and you intend to downsize it still further and reequip it with chocolate guns. Something palatable when you intend to handle your freedom and sovereignty to
an assembly where Saudi Arabia gets one vote, Sudan one vote, North Korea one vote, Iran one vote, Egypt one vote, Syria one vote (plus a second one fopr occupied Lebanon), Yemen one vote, Zimbabwe one vote, Burma one vote. It is beyond me how anyone could give some respectability to an assembly dominated by fascist thugocracies
Posted by: JFM || 10/15/2003 8:20 Comments || Top||

#2  The EU already is important. Whenever you want to have a conference that embraces moral equivalency, the EU is there. A mighty force for appeasement, a dynamo of concerned reflection of the problems of the west, a tower of the wisdom of treating terrorists with respect.
Posted by: mhw || 10/15/2003 9:00 Comments || Top||

#3  Mr Schroeder said the UN must have a monopoly on the use of force and that proliferation of weapons of mass destruction could only be dealt with multilaterally.

Just when it seems that the guy might have learned something from his experiences, bingo zippie, he comes out with this crap.

Closing Ramstein just might be worth doing, whatever the expense would be.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 10:25 Comments || Top||

#4  If the EU truly speaks with one voice than they should give up a lot of seats in the UN, share the two Permenant seats in the Security Council, and start recalling all the extra Ambassadors and closing the unneeded embassies throughout the world. The world should also respond by closing embassies, why should the US have embassies in every European country when understaffed consulates will do nicely.

Get serious Europe, fish or cut bait.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 10:48 Comments || Top||

#5  The voice of the rabbit is heard in the land...
Posted by: mojo || 10/15/2003 11:11 Comments || Top||

#6  Appartently,the rumors of plans for a Fourth Reich are not far from the truth
Posted by: Anonymous || 10/15/2003 12:16 Comments || Top||

#7  NATO is coming out with a new Rapid Reaction Force - a Rumsfeld initiative? The US will only supply 300 of the 20,000 person force. The largest contributor being Spain. I don't think it will fall under EU control soon as Turkey is a contributor, as well.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 14:49 Comments || Top||

#8  Yank> So what is the exact practical difference between an embassy and a consulate?

And it always remains a source of endless amusement how people can at the same time insult Europe for being divided and also for trying to unite.

Yes, if the EU truly speaks with one voice then they should give up a lot of seats in the UN given the 1-nation 1-vote way of vote-counting there, but we have already seen that the UN means squat, haven't we? Countries may find themselves much more powerful internationally when helping form a mutual EU foreign policy rather than when fully form their own individual Estonian or Luxembourgian or Cypriot foreign policies. In short, nations might prefer to have a meaningful vote in the policy that the EU forms, rather than a meaningless vote in the policies the UN approves. If the former ends up indeed being meaningful, of course.

Do you think that Texas would be more powerful than it is today if it had remained independent with an independent foreign policy? It's possible of course - who knows? Still my point remains that things aren't that clear-cut.
Posted by: Aris Katsaris || 10/15/2003 16:44 Comments || Top||

#9  The way I understand it America will have one Embassy in each country, that is where the Ambassador works, there might be consolutes in other large cities. They have lessor status but from a practical point there is not much difference except staffing levels. Many could be closed down because of close proximity now that they would be in the same nation. As far as I can tell the Europeans still have embassies and consulates in each others countries, if that's true I don't think they've truly thought the whole thing through.

Texas would be poorer than they are today, in my humble opinion, something like Canada in population and wealth. A larger size provides certain advantages.

The US is a bad example for United Europe however since none of the states that have proud histories that date back 2,000 years or farther in a few cases like Greece.

I have no problem with a United Europe in theory, my comments are based more on the fact that we hear about United Europe all the time, but the most basic actions like Embassy status, unified military, unifying debt, etc, has been avoided so far and the big rugged adventurious stuff like unified forign policy is all we hear about (from the Germans and French who don't seem to be asking the rest of Europe their opinions).

On a side note, I'm curious if all of the European embassies in Washington DC closed down (except for one) would the land revert back to US control or would Europe control the land (after all the embassy was soverign territory and all). Same with American embassies throughout Europe. Anyone have any idea how that would work out?
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 17:13 Comments || Top||

#10  Yank

It is near midnight so I don't have to develop (I
already did here a couple times): a United Europe
would be a structural ennemy of the United
States. So better you start having problems with

For the unified European military: I will recall
you the fate of two empires who were a conglomerate of peoples without common language
and (at best) weak loyalties to the Empire.
The first was the Persian Empire, the one who
lost at Marathon, Salamina, Plateas, Cunaxa, Granicus, Arbeles, Gaugameles.

The second one was the Austrian Empire who spent
the 17th, 18th, 19th and early twentieth century
(until it ws dissolved in 1918) flying from defeat
to defeat: it had the dilemma of either having
officers unable to speak to their troops or commissionning officers because they could speak the knowing language of the troops instead of because of their competence.

Posted by: JFM || 10/15/2003 17:44 Comments || Top||

#11  This debate keeps on turning in circles. There is Henry Kissinger complaining (?) that Europe has no number to call. There is the complaint (of fellow Rantburgers, too) that Europe is weak, passive, appeasing, pacifist, irrelevant, but whenever Europe tries to assert itself the nonsense of "structural enemy" comes up and a united Europe starts to look threatening.

You can't have it both ways. Europe is a work in progress. It can fail or succeed. But if it fails, it will fall back into stupid nationalism of small countries that won't move much in this world and will be dominated by others.

The Persian and Austrian Empires are bad examples: they were held together by force. Europe is not going to be an empire, it is going to be a unity (call it federation or whatever) that is formed by free democratic states which feel that they can achieve more together politically and economically united.

A stronger competitor, maybe. An enemy? Only if the U.S. choses to treat it as one. It is not in Europe's interest. As for the common language: You will find few young people without a workable knowledge of English.
Posted by: True German Ally || 10/15/2003 18:16 Comments || Top||

#12  TGA, "Stupid nationalism", and small countries "dominated by others"?! These nations are the products of human societal evolution, and "nationalism" recognises differences in culture, language, ethics, history, and law, for starters. Acknowledging and respecting such differences is essential; far from "stupid." You can't pretend that national loyalties are a mental problem that should, or could, be eliminated in order to achieve a homogenous European Union. Besides, smaller states will continue to be dominated and frustrated by the larger ones in such a union, as the less influential members of the eurozone are realising to their cost with the fiscally disregarding behaviour of France and Germany (Gerrit Zalm would have an opinion on that matter, I'm sure).

I'd also disagree with your assertion that Europe will be an enemy of the US "only if the U.S. choses to treat it as one." I think you'd agree that a passion for federalism is highly correlated to anti-American sentiment. The French, Belgian and German governments are the most vocally supportive of shared EU foreign policy, etc. and are also the most noisily critical of the US. Theirs is more frequently coming to resemble an actively anti-US world view, whereas the opposite is simply not the case.
Posted by: Bulldog || 10/15/2003 19:03 Comments || Top||

#13  TGA, Why would we hate a strong and prosperous friend? Most Americans would rather go see our children sing in a school chorus and let free people everywhere rule themselves.

We plan to go back to our passtimes when these problems get put to bed. Even if did like to mess around outside our borders it is doubtful that we would go to the ME looking for a fight.

We could choose between the following:
the Mexican invasion of our country, the Venezualan formenting of rebellion and drug trafficing in Columbia, the ....
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 19:07 Comments || Top||

#14  Bulldog, I mistrust most words ending in an "ism"... such as socialism, communism, and nationalism. All are dangerous exaggerations of something good. For me nationalism has a bad name... for obvious reasons. This has nothing to do with "national loyalties" or pride of the past and presence of your country. I certainly don't want to abolish them... there is something distinctly British, French, Italian or German that will always live, even if Europe turned into a centralized state. The "noisily critical" stance you apply to some European countries mainly applies to Iraq, at least when it comes to Germany. I don't know what you mean by an "anti-US world view": Europe's world view should be European, and in the long run we will always share most values and ideas with the U.S., not with other regions in the world. Differences remain but the majority of people in Boston, New York and San Francisco will also differ in their political views from people in... say Boise, Richmond or Kansas City.

And yes Super Hose, why would you hate a strong and prosperous friend? Only if you are afraid that strength and prosperity would turn this friend into a foe. Which would be stupid. Yet nothing unites friends stronger than a common enemy. And we all know very well where and who these enemies are.
Posted by: True German Ally || 10/15/2003 19:55 Comments || Top||

#15  > "nationalism" recognises differences in culture, language, ethics, history, and law, for starters.

What does "recognizing" differences mean? The Bosnian Serbs certainly "recognized" that the Bosnian Muslims had a different religion, they simply didn't accept coexistence with said different religion. Or do you perhaps think that Milosevic and Karadjic weren't nationalists, and that it wasn't nationalistic hysteria that they used to create their massacres throughout Yugoslavia?

Your sentence is a bit like saying that racism (or perhaps segregationism, to use the much milder version of "nationalism" you seem to be using) recognizes differences between whites and coloured people.

Yes, it recognizes them. It just doesn't accept that they can coexist in a society.

Nationalists treat the nation as a value higher than that of the individual - and unlike patriotism, nationalism is not a personal virtue but rather an *ideology*.

Everything revolves around the nation in nationalistic ideology, and becomes good or bad depending on whether it promotes or opposes the nation. So disallow foreign languages because they are not of the nation -- Harass and distrust foreigners because they are not of the nation. Harass foreign religions and minorities because they endanger the nation's homogeneity. Because you see, if the nation has a certain religion, people that aren't of that religion are suspect. If they belong in a different linguistic group they are suspect. By saying the-nation-is-this-and-that, individual people that aren't this-and-that, no longer are fully "us". They become "they".

I've not met a nationalist yet who isn't deadly afraid of foreign conspiracies and/or cultural contamination.

And for that matter I've not met a nationalist here who hasn't seen fit to insult my country when attacking me, the same way that a racist would insult a people's race. You see the nationalist/racist idiot thinks that to attack a person's ethnic group/race is useful in attacking the person. Since you can't discuss a person without discussing his nation/race, it being the single highest defining characteristic and so on.

"I think you'd agree that a passion for federalism is highly correlated to anti-American sentiment."

Actually in my country hatred for federalism is highly correlated to communist sentiment. But there you go.
Posted by: Aris Katsaris || 10/15/2003 22:13 Comments || Top||

#16  I don't see a United Europe as a threat, I see it as a larger version of Canada. Peaceful, unsettled by cultural issues, and defining itself by how it is not America.

I would love to see a United Europe take some responsiblity for Africa, the old European colonial playground.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 22:31 Comments || Top||

#17  ..but whenever Europe tries to assert itself the nonsense of "structural enemy" comes up..

Because whenever this happens, chances are that it's going to be at the U.S.' expense.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 23:35 Comments || Top||

#18  Hopefully there's some anonymous, industrious little worker bee in Rummy's shop who's busy dusting off old copies of the 1944 Morgenthau Plan. I suppose the part about hanging the leaders and reducing the populace to 'a race of peasants and swineherds" could easily be applied to both the Germans AND the Phrawnch at the same time...
Posted by: Earthquake McGoon || 10/16/2003 1:23 Comments || Top||

#19  Bleieve it or not, Aris, nationalistic feelings exist in the vast majority of people in Europe. To be proud of your nation does not necessarily mean you are a "segregationalist" or "racist," as you want it to. It means recognising the differences between nations and the differences which exist between each. Your narrow-minded view of nationalism concentrates solely on the negative aspects of nationalism (and I freely admit that 50% of nationalism is negative) and not the positives. Negatives and positives aside, you can't simply wish away nationalistic sentiment. It exists, has existed and will continue to exist long into the future, in spite of the best efforts of European federalists to stamp it out.

You say that nationalism cannot tolerate diversity. That's utter rubbish. I'm very proud to call myself British and English, and a member of a very cosmopolitan nation. A nation in which, I'm proud to say, "harrassment and distrust of foreigners" is rare. There's far more to patriotism and nationalism (in my mind the two phrases are effectively interchangeable) than the simplistic differences that you cite, namely race, language and religion.

I've not met a nationalist yet who isn't deadly afraid of foreign conspiracies and/or cultural contamination.

Well, sit down before you faint, Aris. You have done now.
Posted by: Bulldog || 10/16/2003 7:36 Comments || Top||

Fifth Column
Stardumb on Sean Penn
Edited for fluff
The latest person refusing to be boxed in like that is Sean Penn, who reminded the Washington Post in an interview last week that, as far as he’s concerned, he is no "activist." The last time he tried this was in an essay he wrote and published at his own expense as a full-page ad in the New York Times, saying "I am neither a peace activist nor a partisan politico."

One is reminded of the moment in "Falcon and the Snowman" when Penn’s buddy and coconspirator Timothy Hutton tells his Soviet contact that he’s not one of them, not a "professional." Such is Hutton’s naiveté that after selling many volumes of American secrets to the Russians, he denies being a "spy." But his handler is having none of it and tells him: "The moment you accepted money for this, you became a professional."

Someone should get the message to Penn: The moment you enter the public square to win approval for certain ideas or policies, you become an activist. If not a peace activist, what is a person who loans out their celebrity to the antiwar cause, goes on an antiwar publicity junket to Baghdad just as his country is readying to invade, pays for the privilege of publishing an open letter in the Washington Post arguing against military action in Iraq, and then, as a U.S.-led coalition takes over Iraq, buys a whole page of the New York Times to publish an essay announcing that the American flag is becoming a banner of "murder, greed, and treason against our principles, honored history, Constitution, and our own mothers and fathers"?

This, of course, isn’t to say Penn makes an effective activist or an eloquent spokesman for the anti-Bush, antiwar forces. Rather, this superb character actor and leading man (whose work on screen I personally favor in a very big way) sounds more than a few credits shorts of a degree when it comes to the job of talking and writing politics, which is why he’s being honored as today’s featured Stardummy. (Applause.)
*dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb dumb*
THE REAL COLLAR-YANKING SECTION of the Post profile comes when Penn says that last fall, before Saddam Hussein failed to satisfy Hans Blix and everyone else participating in renewed U.N. inspections, "I just, in every part of my bones, knew we were being lied to." Here we can assume Penn means being lied to by the Bush administration. Funny that it doesn’t even occur to him that the big liar of last fall was Saddam Hussein.
Rachel Corrie wrote "This is a genocidal war" but refused to see which side was genocidal. Same brand of idiotarian.
"So what did I do?" Penn says, explaining his own reasoning for the trip he soon made. "Well, it’s in Iraq. I’m going to go to Iraq, to see it, to sense it there."
"And if it clashes with my views, call up the selfDeceive() method."
To sense it there. What an amazing phrase. After decades of history, with the "over a hundred experts in our Middle Eastern affairs, military and civilian, with a primary focus on U.N. weapon inspection capabilities," with whom Penn claims he has been consulting, and any number of fairly direct paths (newspapers, magazines, books), Sean Penn followed his feelings.
The heart is deceitful above all things

Now that the war is over, except for the ugly work of dealing with bitter suicide factions and freelance anti-American terrorists, how would Penn characterize the fighting he had earlier said would claim "’collateral damage’ of many hundreds of thousands"? The war, he told the Post, became "a big [expletive], devastating, obscene mass of murder and a total betrayal of every principle the United States is based on and an absolute setup of young boys in the military by this current administration."
Then his lips fell off.
What planet does this guy live on? Insania. Does he really think that defeating a long-time enemy of the United States, that threatened the security of a region (after signing a peace agreement saying it wouldn’t), that has used, developed, and was aiming in the future to again develop weapons of mass destruction, that had made friends with terrorist organizations is a betrayal of any part of the American creed?

Particularly amazing is that while Penn casually pukes forth the most venomous accusations--calling the administration treasonous and murderous--he doesn’t mind a bout of self-pity for all the harsh language that’s been directed at him. After publishing the October letter to Bush in the Washington Post, Penn complained, "I was hit by a tidal wave of misrepresentations, and even accusations of treason. I experienced firsthand the repressive condition of public debate in our country, as it prepared for war." Worse than a total, bloviating hypocrite, this guy is a crybaby.

Like an appendix of quotable lines from a Shakespeare play, here are a few from the Times ad and the Post letter:

-"The human death toll of the corporate march includes those courageous and heroic Americans who have died." (Times)
Yes, Penn is saying the death toll includes people who died.

-"We are struggling now with the question of whether there is any longer a time to kill. We are grappling perhaps with mimetic evolution." (Times)
Penn is suggesting a pacifism that never tolerates killing might be desirable--and then talking out his derriÚre.

-"I have consulted over 100 experts in our Middle Eastern Affairs, military and civilian, with a primary focus on U.N. weapons inspection capabilities. These consultations measurably increased my doubt at the factuality or wisdom of the administration’s assertions and proposed remedies."
Whether by "over 100 experts" Penn means, like, a hundred short articles over, say, a three month period, I don’t know. Because consultations, even brief ones, with "over 100 experts" would take more time than any working actor/director has. Furthermore, if any of the "over 100 experts" received a stipend, Penn should get his money back.

-"There can be no justifications for the actions of al Qaeda. Nor acceptance of the criminal viciousness of the tyrant, Saddam Hussein. Yet, that bombing is answered by bombing, mutilation by mutilation, killing by killing, is a pattern that only a great country like ours can stop." (Post)
Though Penn in this prewar letter was arguing for renewed inspections, he sounds for a moment like a hawk. In fact, given his identification of Saddam as a criminal and vicious tyrant, it’s surprising he isn’t more pleased with the outcome of Operation Iraqi Freedom thus far. What’s strange, though, is that he seems to believe the Osamas and Saddams of the world can be stopped only by nonmilitary means. Perhaps he would have us "sense" our way toward peace, "evolve" in that direction ("mimetically" of course), and ask that the world’s tyrants and terror-masters do the same.

Personally my favorite line comes from the Washington Post profile of last week, where Penn told his interviewer that he wouldn’t discuss directing projects he’s got underway. "You give up the energy and you don’t want to do them anymore . . . It’s like Woody Harrelson used to talk about giving up his ’chi.’ You’ve got to hold onto this stuff. It’s still being created."

THE MOST BIZARRE COMMENT of Penn’s, however, comes in the title of his New York Times essay ad: "Kilroy’s Still Here." A bold choice, it suggested some kind of parable in which this "Kilroy" (whoever he is) teaches us an important lesson. Maybe the story would end--after the K-man’s big heroic deed is carried out and the baddies are sent to rest--with the line "Kilroy was here."

But The Daily Standard’s research department says this particular inscription dates back to a World War II ship inspector who’d mark rivets as such, to make it clear that they’d been checked and paid for. The words remained in many ships coming out of the Fore River shipyard in Massachusetts, and caused many soldiers to wonder about this ubiquitous Kilroy. What made the line famous, however, was the decision of American soldiers to mark territory they’d fought over or occupied with those very words, to turn Kilroy into a boogey man, a Kaiser Soze.

It is unclear, however, why Penn invokes Kilroy, who is mentioned outside the title of the essay only once, in the third paragraph: "Since September 11, 2001, when Kilroy left his mark, I had been concerned for the physical safety of my children . . ."

What does Penn mean? That American WWII soldiers were responsible for the terrorist attacks? That America itself was responsible? On a textual level, it’s hard to see how any other interpretation could be made. But a more humane approach would suggest something else. I like the notion that the Kilroy story had gained the quality of a private nonsense joke for Penn, who then decided to use it as a title for his larkish foray into politics.
Personally, I’ve only seen this beauzeau in Dead Man Walking, in which he led with Susan Morannon.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 3:31:25 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6467 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I've read Dennis Lehane's book "Mystic River" and it's excellent like all his books. Penn's latest also stars antiwar nimnod Tim Robbins, who as a political activist, is an excellent actor (see Shawshank Redemption or Bull Durham). Mystic River is directed by Clint Eastwood, no friend to pussies. Check the movie out and let the antiwar activists know that as knowledge and good judgement goes...they're excellent actors
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 19:33 Comments || Top||

#2  Hey, Sean? Replace those stolen guns yet?
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 20:43 Comments || Top||

#3  Atrus, I find it hard to believe you never saw FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH. That movie defines Sean Penn.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 22:34 Comments || Top||

Lunacy from ro’Moore
Surprise, surprise. There’s some serious lunacy coming out of Michael Moore’s mouth, this time on CNN’s Crossfire. Take a look at these whoppers.
Here the lunatic begins.
I’d like to ask the question whether September 11 was a terrorist attack, or was it a military attack? We call it a terrorist attack. We keep calling it a terrorist attack.
Because that’s what it was.
But it sure has the markings of a military attack. And I’d like to know whose military was involved in this precision, perfectly planned operation. I’m sorry, but my common sense has never allowed me to believe since that day that you can learn how to fly a plane at 500 miles per hour. And you know, when you go up 500 miles an hour, if you’re off by this much, you’re in the Potomac. You don’t hit a five-store building like that.
Why do you think the monsters trained for so long?
You don’t learn how to do that at some rinky-dink flight training school in Florida on a little video game with PacMan buttons. I’m sorry. I just don’t buy that.
"I buy the Brooklyn Bridge instead."
And I’d like to know what the involvement was within the Saudi military or the Saudi royal family or what rogue elements within the Saudi regime, whatever it is. I want to read those 28 pages and I want to know what the truth is.
You found it and rejected it, you moron.

This is a brilliant example of ignoring an obvious truth in order to feed the appetite of one of your ridiculous conspiracy theories. Why, in the name of God, would pilots trained by the Saudi military come to America and check themselves into a flight school? These men checked into flight schools (with full simulators, not "video games with Pac Man buttons"), paid cash, and specifically trained only on flying, not on takeoff or landing. I suppose this was some sort of grand conspiracy to hide in plain sight; to act so much like Islamic terrorists, who wanted to learn just enough to be able to fly a plane into a building, that they would never be detected by the authorities. Seriously, no matter what your opinions about Bush and the war, you have got to be absolutely delusional to even entertain this ridiculous idea. This ranks right up there with the French claim that all the Jews were told to stay away from work on 9/11.

Well, there are acts of terrorism. Obviously, there have been serious acts of terrorism. And there will be more. I don’t think we can avoid those. We can do our best to take whatever precautions we can to avoid them. But what I’m saying in the book is that we have been manipulated with this fear that there’s some kind of general terrorist threat out there: They’re everywhere. They’re everywhere. They could kill you at any moment. And because of that, we have to rip up the Constitution, take away our civil liberties, put people in jail with no charges, drill holes in Alaska for oil, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

This is really odd coming from Moore. This is a guy who made a documentary which specifically perpetuates an irrational fear of guns: guns are everywhere in America, they can kill you at any moment. And because of that Moore wants to rip up the Second Amendment to the Constitution.
And I think -- I don’t like the dead, those who died that day, being used and manipulated in that way by the Bush administration, so they can enact their right-wing agenda.
That’s not going to happen, you self-deceived beauzeau!

Like the way Michael Moore manipulated the victims of the Columbine shooting? Don’t take my word for it, read what Mark Taylor had to say. He’s one of the shooting victims that Moore took with him to K-Mart’s headquarters.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 12:16:17 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6466 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Dear Michael Moron,

It was a terrorist attack because innocent civilians were deliberately targetted and murdered in cold blood.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/15/2003 12:44 Comments || Top||

#2  I actually agree with moore that it is a military attack. When two sides are unevenly matched, terrorism works (right up until the point where we trashed afganistan for it)

Terrorists count on being anonymous or hard to trace. Bin Laden tried to deny he had anything to do with it, but we knew and he got the big stick upside his head.

Other than that I think Michael Moore is a pinhead.
Posted by: flash91 || 10/15/2003 13:05 Comments || Top||

#3  Hey! That's not nice!
Posted by: Pin || 10/15/2003 13:06 Comments || Top||

#4  How is it that this moron is popular with the left? If anyone else said the moronic things this scum bag says he would be ostracized by society... but somehow he has gotten the left to embrace him no matter what drivel and assinine hate speech he spouts. It's a really disturbing statement about the extreme to which the left has lost it's way.
Posted by: Damn_Proud_American || 10/15/2003 13:08 Comments || Top||

#5  flash91,

basically you're saying all terroist attacks are military attacks... why even have the word terrorism then?
Posted by: Damn_Proud_American || 10/15/2003 13:10 Comments || Top||

#6  Flash91, your logic fails in another place too. In order to be a pinhead, one needs to have at least some intellect.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 13:17 Comments || Top||

#7  "And you know, when you go up 500 miles an hour, if you’re off by this much, you’re in the Potomac. You don’t hit a five-store building like that."

Um, they barely hit the building, I think the plane hit the grass first which limited the damage to the Pentagon. And lets not forget that many believe that plane was actually aiming for the White House but couldn't see it so it went for the highly recognizable backup target.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 13:33 Comments || Top||

#8  The thing that amazes me about Michael Moore is why the media bother to give him any ink and air time at all. He's an expert in what? (Bitter idioacy doesn't count.)
Posted by: Gasse Katze || 10/15/2003 13:48 Comments || Top||

#9  I would've read this, but the only opinions of Mike's I pay attention to are those he has on polyunsaturated foods. His expertise on that subject is obvious and has great merit. Let me know when "Porking Out For Columbine" gets released.
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 14:39 Comments || Top||

#10  Damn_proud_american:

1) I didnt coin the word terrorism. Nor did I coin the term fifth column.

2) No, I didnt say all terrorist attacks were military attacks - although most are. Contra's and Sandinistas for example.

My simple brain looks at it this way:

Sustained terrorism requires a sustaining source of capital. Opium, oil etc.

That means a group supporting the activity.

Groups with lands are called nations.

Nations promoting hostility is called war.

The trick to fighting terrorism is not to play it down, but to immediately escalate to full combat.
Posted by: flash91 || 10/15/2003 14:44 Comments || Top||

#11  Michael Moore has hit upon a grain of truth (as all liars can do) with his ruminating about 9-11.

I find it hard to believe that these 'pilots', as incompetent as they were, managed to fly three aircraft exactly on target first time. I am not talking about what Moore is talking about, but rather being 100s of miles away and being able to fly an aircraft into a narrow target like the twin tower first time.

I know nothing about modern aircraft. If it is possible to punch in coordinates into a navigation computer and then just ride it in, I can understand that, but how did they get the original coordinates to be able to hit those three targets so closely from a starting point 100s of miles away?

All this leads me to believe that they did have some help from a hostile government in at least gaining the coordinates and then guiding the plane in so accurately.

Maybe a radio signal from inside the building? Maybe a radio station, but even then they would have to know how to rdf the signal and then fly it in.

Someone pease help me out in this.
Posted by: badanov || 10/15/2003 15:41 Comments || Top||

#12  Flash - Okay, I see the error here.

Only SOME groups with land are called nations. _That's_ the error. You can be a land-owning/controlling group and NOT be a nation. Hell's bells, the Roman Catholic Church owns more land than some small countries, but they're not a nation, 'merely' a religion. There are a number of narco-terrorists who own land, but don't seek to govern it, merely harvest their crops. They don't really form a nation either. A _tribe_ perhaps, given their family connections and tendency towards blood-based loyalty, but not a nation.

Unless, of course, you're using the word "nation" in the same sense that Native Americans often do. (The Cheyenne or Commanche nations, for example). And having a number of Indian grandparents/great-grandparents, I can say - without being slammed as a white bigot - that such use is really _silly_, if not entirely obsolete.

The modern meaning of the word "nation" has long since outgrown such minor, tribalistic definitions.

*shrugs* It happens. The world changes, words change with the world. Oh, well. ^_^

Posted by: Ed Becerra || 10/15/2003 15:43 Comments || Top||

Badanov, I hate to disillusion you, but modern jetliners are rather easy to fly, and most of them have nav computers that are quite powerful. Look around a cockpit of a jetliner sometime. At LEAST 60%, and likely as high as 90% of all the gauges, dials, switches and controls are _safety_ gear. Including the obvious, such as "are the engines running too hot? too cold?"

_FLYING_ a plane is easy. The _HARD_ part is taking off and landing, Bad. Once you're in the air, a bright 12 year-old with a good sense of balance and a calm, patient, willing attitude can fly a passenger jet through the air. Many actually _have_.

Many pilots would like their profession to APPEAR to be like brain surgery.. "One slip of my hands and EVERYBODY DIES! AHHHHHHHHH!" Not true.

They do deserve credit, it IS a highly skilled profession. But most of that skill applies ONLY during three occasions. Taking off, landing, and the rare in-flight emergency caused by weather, mechanical problems, or some loon with a cause/grudge and a weapon.

Don't believe me? Well, do you drive a car? That's a "highly technical skill", isn't it?

Where I live, in Colorado, children as young as 8 regularly drive tractors on their family farms with no problems. But, you argue, there's no traffic on a farm! The kids have it easy!

EXACTLY! And there's no traffic in the vast majority of the sky. As long as you stay away from the high traffic areas, try to NOT hit the ground, and don't run out of fuel, _any_ idiot can stay up in the air with ease. Straight level flight is pathetically easy as long as you stay calm.

Now, aerial acrobatics, fighter combat, bad weather flight, and other such high risk items ARE hard and dangerous. You're quite correct there.

But flying straight and level in clear air, and hitting a target as huge as the Pentagon? *I* can do that, and I'm not a pilot.

And the Pentagon IS a huge target, mind you. Most folks hear "five stories tall", and think "short is small". The Pentagon is one of the largest buildings in the _world_. You just don't notice because it's low and spread out instead of tall and narrow. It can, and does, hold more people than many middle sized cities, has its own shopping mall, subway station, post office, small hospital.. I could go on, but I hope you get the idea. I don't have the numbers at hand, but the Pentagon holds more people than many COUNTIES in Colorado. Not "it can hold", it DOES hold. It's a city in it's own right.

Posted by: Ed Becerra || 10/15/2003 16:03 Comments || Top||

#14  Forgive my ignorance, I didn't fly planes.

But I thought that for these modern jets all you have to do is dial in the GPS coordiantes of where you want to go and the plane essentially takes you there.

That is how my buddy's Cherokee works. He can play cards while it flies, if he was so inclined. He's not though, that's why I'll fly with him.
Posted by: Penguin || 10/15/2003 16:19 Comments || Top||

#15  Any links on what Mark Taylor said?
Posted by: Michael || 10/15/2003 16:28 Comments || Top||

#16  The quotes are at the link.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 16:30 Comments || Top||

#17  Ed,

>Hell's bells, the Roman Catholic Church owns

They used to have armies as well if memory serves

>number of narco-terrorists who own land, but

If you have to pay yearly for the land, you are renting.

Narco terrorism is used to paralyse government activities. I dont agree that they dont seek to govern it. If they could topple an adversarial government, they would.

The point really isnt about nations, it's about being able to respond to terrorism. Groups (pre-internet) are in close geography, that means a nation or two.

Tell them to crack down on their groups, it they dont they are complicite.
Posted by: flash91 || 10/15/2003 16:31 Comments || Top||

#18  badanov, GPS will get you to the target city, after that you need to pick a recognizable target. Something huge, standing out high against the skyline would be good. Two would be better. Either that or a massive building along a riverside so that its not hidden, something with a unique geometric shape would do nicely.

Clearly they chose targets that were not only symbolic but that would be visibly obvious from some distance away. As I noted before many believe the Pentagon plane was tasked with hitting the white house, also visible obvious but luckily not from the direction they came in from.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 17:19 Comments || Top||

#19  Mr Atrus

There is a low life who happens to my utter shame happens to be French, who wrote a book telling the Pentagon was hit not with a jet but with a US cruise

But the lie about Jews in WTC not going to work on 9/11 is not from him or from any French. It is something invented by the Islamists from Pakistan
or Arabia.

Posted by: JFM || 10/15/2003 17:50 Comments || Top||

#20  It first appeared on the Hezbollah TV network in Lebanon and spread from there.
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 20:26 Comments || Top||

#21  Flying a "heavy" airliner is not that particularly hard, unless you're trying to takeoff, land, or fly at low altitude in adverse weather conditions. Then you do have to know your stuff. The murderers who flew on 9-11 probably had portable GPS units, which although are not precise enough for landings, are good enough to follow Jet routes or V-routes accurately. A Jeppesen high or low altitude chart (available for purchase publicly) will show you which routes to follow to put you in the vicinity of Manhattan. The GPS unit, basic flying skills and good visibility will do the rest. *it is not that difficult* The hardest part was subduing the crew and passengers.
Posted by: Rafael || 10/15/2003 23:04 Comments || Top||

#22  I regularlly use a GPS to mark and return to the best fishing spots.
Posted by: Raptor || 10/16/2003 10:45 Comments || Top||

Ahmed Khadr killed in gunfight: report
Hat tip Dan Darling
Federal officials are investigating reports that two Canadian al-Qaeda members were killed by Pakistani security forces during a shootout near the Afghanistan border. Reports emerging from the region claim Ahmed Said Khadr and one of his sons were killed during a raid on an al-Qaeda camp in Waziristan, in Pakistan’s lawless tribal frontier region. A press release issued by the Islamic Observation Centre in London and circulated on an Arabic Internet site announced the death of Mr. Khadr, calling him a "founding member" of al-Qaeda.
When they talk about the Children™ we're holding at Guantanamo, one of 'em's Khadr's boy, Omar, who murdered a Special Forces troop when he was 14 or 15.
Canadian intelligence officials believe Mr. Khadr is a senior al-Qaeda member closely tied to Osama bin Laden. Three of his Canadian sons — Omar, Abdurahman and Abdullah — are also in the family business suspected members of al-Qaeda. When Mr. Khadr was arrested in Pakistan for his alleged role in the 1995 bombing of the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, Jean Chrétien, the Prime Minister, intervened in the case. Mr. Khadr was released shortly thereafter.
Nice to be tight with Monsieur Jean, isn't it?
The press release said Mr. Khadr and his son were among 12 al-Qaeda and Taliban members killed in an exchange of gunfire. It did not name the son but he is believed to be Abdullah, who once ran an al-Qaeda gang training camp in Afghanistan. Omar and Abdurahman Khadr are currently being held by the U.S. military at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
So that's the whole shebang, rotting or in jug. Until Monsieur Jean gets the boys sprung. Doubt if he'll be able to resurrect Pop and Abdul...
The report from London did not indicate when Mr. Khadr was killed, but on Oct. 2, Pakistani forces launched a major raid in Waziristan, where some believe bin Laden and his deputy Ayman Al Zawahiri are hiding. At dawn, soldiers backed by Cobra helicopter gunships surrounded five mud compounds that had been taken over by al-Qaeda and Taliban members. They refused to surrender and fought back with grenades and machine guns. By the end of the day, 12 al-Qaeda fighters had been killed and another 18 were captured. Pakistani soldiers seized grenades, rockets, guns and anti-tank mines from the compounds.
The MMA was indignant, of course...
Mr. Khadr was born in Egypt, but moved to Ottawa in 1975 and studied computers at the University of Ottawa. He married a Palestinian-Canadian and they had six children, four boys and two girls, most of them Canadian-born. After the Soviets invaded Afghanistan in 1979, he joined Human Concern International (HCI), an Ottawa-based Muslim charity financed by the Canadian government, and brought his family to Pakistan, where he was supposed to be running refugee camps. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service, however, says the camps were actually mujahedeen bases, used by Islamic fighters entering and exiting Afghanistan. HCI "was one of many organizations that were helping refugees fleeing to Pakistan from Afghanistan and supporting the mujahedeen freedom fighters who waged war against the Soviet occupying forces throughout the 1980s," a CSIS report says. In November, 1995, members of the Al Jihad terrorist organization blew up the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, killing 17 people. Mr. Khadr was arrested for allegedly financing the operation. But he was freed after Mr. Chrétien, under pressure from Canadian Muslim groups, took the highly unusual step of intervening in the case during a meeting with Benazir Bhutto, then the prime minister of Pakistan. Mr. Khadr came back to Canada, left Human Concern and formed his own aid group called Health and Education Project International, which was based at the Salahedin mosque in Scarborough. But he soon moved his family to Jalalabad, where he was reportedly in close contact with bin Laden. His son Abdurahman was captured in November, 2001, by Northern Alliance troops who swept south to oust the Taliban. The following July, Omar Khadr, then just 15, was caught near Khost after a firefight with U.S. forces. He killed a U.S. medic with a hand grenade before he was captured. Khost is just across the border from Waziristan. The press release announcing Mr. Khadr’s death was posted on the Abu Dhabi-based Internet site alsaha.com, which is closely monitored by the CIA and FBI because it often posts credible information on Islamic terrorist activities.
Posted by: Paul Moloney || 10/15/2003 6:55:57 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The Khadr's deaths - whopee!!! - will be welcomed by Canada's Prime Minister. The elder Khadr could have been embarassing, if he talked.
Posted by: Imam Hotep Bejesus || 10/15/2003 19:05 Comments || Top||

#2  How do ya tell if an Al Qaeda is Canadian eh?

They wear tooks instead of turbans, doncha know, eh?
Posted by: Takof el Hozeer || 10/15/2003 19:12 Comments || Top||

#3  Jean Chrétien, the Prime Minister, intervened in the case

Maybe the Cretin can help pay for 9/11 deaths caused by his "projects"
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 19:20 Comments || Top||

#4  "Der is no terrorist in da Canada, just da grateful Liberal immergrant votors, eh?"

The Cretien Legacy Merde continues. What an asshat.
Posted by: john || 10/15/2003 19:30 Comments || Top||

#5  Federal officials are investigating reports that two Canadian al-Qaeda members were killed by Pakistani security forces during a shootout near the Afghanistan border.

Excellent. More, please.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 20:07 Comments || Top||

#6  Enjoy your raisins, Ahmed. Make sure you say "hi" to Allah for all of us, you dead prick. Hope your kid enjoys keeping you company in Hell.
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 20:36 Comments || Top||

#7  I'll be outside ululating for the rest of the evening.
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 20:39 Comments || Top||

#8  enjoy, Fred
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 22:12 Comments || Top||

The places that people will go to kill each other
EFL form Worldwire
Nowhere in the world is there a battlefield so remote, so high, so alien.
In this wasteland of rock and ice, soldiers fight each other and the weather at heights above 18,000 feet, their bodies wasting away, starved of oxygen. "They look like animals when they come down, unshaven, dirty and thin as rods," is how one soldier described his comrades. Yet since 1984, India and Pakistan have been fighting for control of the Siachen Glacier and the surrounding tangle of mountains where South Asia, Central Asia and China collide.
Siachen Glacier where the only non-combatant casualties are the Yeti.
Today, so great is the mistrust between the nuclear-armed neighbors, which came close to war last year, that neither side will withdraw its troops, fearing the other will move in to the the godforsaken valueless frozen waste. The battle is not for the land itself -- the entire area is uninhabitable -- but for national pride and a belief that holding the heights of Siachen offers a strategic advantage.
We haven’t figured out what the advantage is but they aren’t hurting the property values up there. Let them rumble.
But in the 1980s, Pakistan began what India called "cartographic aggression," showing the Siachen Glacier on its maps and authorizing mountaineering expeditions to the region.
I thought that cartographic-aggression was when the Ruskies tried to get a look at the big board.
On April 13, 1984 India, fearing Pakistan would use control of Siachen to link up with its traditional ally China, airlifted in troops, who scrambled to occupy the passes leading into the glacier before Pakistani troops counterattacked.
We refuse to allow you to establish a mine shaft gap.
Since then the armies have dug in on whatever high points they could hold, sometimes within sight of each other. They shell each other, or shoot at each other, but rarely to much effect, their ability to fight hampered by the thin air and sheer challenge of operating in the extreme cold. Only 3 percent of the casualties here are from fighting. The rest die in avalanches, fall into crevasses or succumb to high-altitude sickness.
Hey, the recruiter didn’t tell me about the crevasses.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 3:20:09 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Outside Matgazine had a story on this conflict in Feb. 2003: "War at 21,000 Feet.". Graphic B&W photos, great prose, the whole nine yards. Here's a link to the magazine: http://outside.away.com/outside/toc/200302.html (watch the wrap).
Posted by: MW || 10/15/2003 15:33 Comments || Top||

#2  From the top of the Himalayas to the bottom of the Dead Sea, run Islam's bloody borders.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 20:53 Comments || Top||

#3  good link MW - I remember reading a Clancy-spawn book about the LOC - it was a terminally vicious environment
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 22:19 Comments || Top||

#4  Read the book,FG.Talk about a"harsh enviornment".
Posted by: Raptor || 10/16/2003 10:55 Comments || Top||

High-Ranking Al-Qaida Member Killed, Maybe..
One of the men killed in Pakistan’s largest-ever offensive against al-Qaida appears to have been a high-ranking member of the terror network, a Pakistani official said Wednesday. Eight al-Qaida suspects were killed and 18 were captured in the Oct. 2 shootout with army troops in South Waziristan, a tribal region along the border with Afghanistan. Two Pakistani soldiers also died. "There is a probability which I cannot confirm that a man among those killed was one who has a reward on his head," Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said at a news conference in Islamabad. "He was among the top 10 or 15 people in al-Qaida."
Oh, come on, don’t tease us!
Ahmed declined to provide further details.
Dammit, now I’m going to have to keep looking through all those islamic news sites for hints on who’s missing. Then I have to shower and delouse my computer.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 1:13:29 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  *waits for verification*
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 13:15 Comments || Top||

#2  Another hint: A TOP al-Qaeda leader is believed to have died in a recent operation launched by the Pakistani army in the northwestern tribal region bordering Afghanistan, Information Minister Sheikh Rashid said today. "An important member of al-Qaeda was believed to be among those killed in the Angoor Adda operation," the minister told AFP. "He had a bounty on his head which was very large."
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 13:23 Comments || Top||

#3  Dig faster, Steve! I'll express mail you some Rid™ for the lice...
Posted by: seafarious || 10/15/2003 15:33 Comments || Top||

#4  It may be Ahmed Khadr, the Canadian whose 16 year old son killed a US medic in Afghanistan.
Posted by: Paul Moloney || 10/15/2003 18:46 Comments || Top||

Pakistani Charity Is Called Terror Front
The United States Treasury Department designated a Pakistani charity, Al Akhtar Trust International, as a financial sponsor of terrorism yesterday, saying the group finances Al Qaeda militants in Afghanistan, raises money for terrorist acts in Iraq, and may be linked to the murder of Daniel Pearl, the Wall Street Journal reporter, in Pakistan. The Treasury Department said in a statement that Al Akhtar had operated in the guise of a charitable organization and was a false nose and moustache for successor to Al Rashid Trust, which the department has previously identified as a terrorist financier. Treasury officials said the information used to designate Al Akhtar as a terrorist entity came from continuing counterterrorism investigations conducted with the Pakistani government. Al Akhtar could not be reached for comment, but its Web site says the group finances relief organizations like hospitals and blood banks.
"Mahmoud! Go shoot somebody. We need another few gallons of blood!"
The Treasury Department, basing its information on Pakistani media accounts, said Al Akhtar was founded three years ago by prominent religious scholars "for the purpose of providing financial assistance for mujahedeen, financial support to the Taliban, and food, clothes and education to orphans of martyrs." The department also said that a man named Al-Saud Memon supervised Al Akhtar’s finances and was believed to have been involved in the kidnapping of Mr. Pearl. According to a Treasury Department statement yesterday Mr. Memon may have been present at the compound in Pakistan where Mr. Pearl was held captive and killed.
Posted by: Paul Moloney || 10/15/2003 2:04:11 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Sometimes I think it would be easier if they listed the Islamic "charities" that aren't terrorist fronts.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 8:05 Comments || Top||

#2  The list would be shorter and easier to keep track of, wouldn't it?
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 8:45 Comments || Top||

#3  I'll say it: Lies, All Lies!!!
Posted by: OminousWhatever || 10/15/2003 10:12 Comments || Top||

#4  The list would be shorter and easier to keep track of, wouldn't it?

A couple of 8 1/2 x 11 pieces of paper should be sufficient for that task.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 11:06 Comments || Top||

#5  A couple of 8 1/2 x 11 pieces of paper
I'm thinking along the lines of a Post-It note.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 14:28 Comments || Top||

#6  Fortune cookie.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 20:54 Comments || Top||

Death of Sammy’s sons, cash rewards generate intelligence windfall
From Geostrategy-direct...requires subscription....
U.S. military intelligence in Iraq has been steadily improving due largely to ordinary Iraqis. People with information about Saddam Hussein or his aides are being drawn by the prospect of major cash rewards. Quietly, U.S. agents are receiving information on Al Qaida and other Sunni insurgents in the so-called Sunni Triangle, particularly in Saddam’s stronghold of Tikrit. U.S. officials said the Iraqi-supplied intelligence began to flow in earnest after Saddam’s two sons were killed in Mosul in July. The Iraqi who reported the information got more than $25 million, and suddenly people understood there was plenty of money to be made.
"Fatimah, do we know any Bad Guys?"
"I don't think so, Mahmoud."
"Damn. Guess I'll open a felafel stand, then."
"That event itself has led to a large increase in the amount of intelligence that Iraqis are bringing to us — indeed such a large increase that we now have the challenge of sorting out the wheat from the chaff," said Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz. Some of the information on Sunni insurgents has been good. Officials said most of the counter-insurgency operations by coalition forces are based on intelligence from Iraqi sources. If the intelligence is good, the U.S. commanders bring out the piggy bank. Relations between the U.S. military and the Sunni community have improved rapidly in the area north of Baghdad. Attacks still occur daily, but there is beginning to be trust as well as a core of Sunnis who want to work with the Americans.
Maybe they want their kids to grow up to be something besides dangerous...
The U.S. Marines have particularly good relations with ordinary Iraqis. They brought cold water to Iraqis stranded in the brutal summer heat. When the Marines talk to Iraqis they remove their sunglasses to make eye contact. One Marine lieutenant came up with an idea that has spread throughout the country. When a Marine patrol sees an Iraqi funeral procession, it stops. As the hearse passes, the Marines present arms to show respect. The gesture almost never fails to win the respect of Iraqi bystanders.
Cool idea!
Will this win the day for the U.S. military in Iraq? Perhaps. If the local population quietly cooperates with the Americans or at least stays aloof from the propaganda of Saddam and Al Qaida, the power of the U.S. military might very well prevail.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 4:55:44 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I am always moved by these stories. To my dying day I will always regret not joining the Marines.
Posted by: Ray || 10/15/2003 17:33 Comments || Top||

#2  I gather that the ambushes, which require complicity of at least hundreds of civilians, occur in only a couple of Iraqi cities. Perhaps new rules of engagement need to be pursued in Saddam-friendly sections. I am aware of some retaliation inflicted on farmers who allowed terror operations against pipelines, to take place on their properties. Sow the wind, weep the whirlwind.
Posted by: Imam Hotep Bejesus || 10/15/2003 19:02 Comments || Top||

#3  This is rather dated. The Marines were out of Iraq last month.
Posted by: buwaya || 10/15/2003 19:25 Comments || Top||

#4  Showing respect costs nothing -- neither pain nor cash -- but can earn a great deal. That lieutenant deserves a great big attaboy for the idea.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 20:56 Comments || Top||

#5  RC - agreed and I, like Ray, regret not joining the Marines. I bet I would've matured (or died heh heh) a lot earlier, and got my life in forward gear with their assistance.
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 22:14 Comments || Top||

U.S troops battle at Iraqi-Syrian border
U.S. troops came under fire from a group of people the coalition says were trying to cross illegally into Iraq from Syria on Wednesday. The resulting gun battle left several of the alleged infiltrators dead.
"Welcome to Iraq. You may fire when ready, Gridley."
A U.S. observation helicopter was forced down after being hit by small-arms fire during the skirmish, but no U.S. soldiers were reported killed or wounded. The clash began about midnight Tuesday, when ground observers from the Army's 82nd Airborne Division noticed a group of people trying to enter Iraq without going through an official crossing. U.S. troops backed by Bradley fighting vehicles and an M-1 tank attempted to contact the group, but were shot at with a rocket-propelled grenade.
Mmmm... Bad move.
U.S. troops returned fire, killing some of the attackers and capturing a small number of others. Coalition officials said that those detained did not have the proper paperwork to cross the border.
Bet they didn't have a license for the grenade launchers, either.
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/15/2003 15:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Hey, they scratched the paint on my M1!"

Posted by: mojo || 10/15/2003 15:07 Comments || Top||

#2  Take their gear and any intel, and leave them to rot where they are, in order to let the others know that they go through the checkpoints or they go to hell. It's their choice. Good work US.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 15:25 Comments || Top||

#3  An official border crossing? Where were the Syrian border guards? Baby Bashar's got some 'splainin' to do.
Posted by: Rex Mundi || 10/15/2003 15:27 Comments || Top||

#4  Well, they were kidnapped by Zionists, y'know. The Mossad comes up and snags 'em, and then these agitators in Jewish pay, they talk these innocent Muslims into running off to fight jihad against the Merkins, but just to make Syria look bad...
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 15:40 Comments || Top||

#5  Hot pursuit all the way to the Ba'aka valley, that'll show 'em.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 17:20 Comments || Top||

#6  Send Spooky on regular patrols there. If them Syrians and their allies/lackeys are smart, they won't try their crap again after being "warned" once by Spooky.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 17:51 Comments || Top||

#7  I wonder how many copies of "Born in East LA" have been sold with Arabic subtitles.
Posted by: Cheech Marin || 10/15/2003 19:15 Comments || Top||

#8  I'm thnking smoking heads on pikes....but that's just me, a sensitive guy
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 20:26 Comments || Top||

#9  Air-drop their corpses on Bashar's lawn, or in his pool.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 20:57 Comments || Top||

#10  I'm with Frank. Mark the border with pikes, topped by the heads of attempted infiltrators. After we get the process down pat, take it to the US/Mexico border, as well.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 22:14 Comments || Top||

Iraqi governing council rejects Muslim peacekeepers
Think they know something? EFL:
Members of Iraq’s US-appointed governing council said today that they did not want Muslim peacekeepers to replace the US troops stationed in the country. Their comments at the Organisation of the Islamic Conference summit in Putrajaya, Malaysia, came as debate continued to rage over the deployment of Turkish forces, which the council fears Ankara could use to meddle in its internal affairs.
Ya think?
Washington is also seeking to put a draft resolution before the UN security council today that would lead to its 130,000 troops in Iraq being reinforced with international forces, some of which are certain to be from Muslim countries. The council members said they would prefer a formula that allowed Iraq to take charge of its own security as soon as possible, with exisiting coalition troops making way for the eventual emergence of more Iraqi security forces.
Works for me.
"We do not prefer troops from neighbouring countries to enter Iraq ... in fact we do not prefer forces from other Islamic countries," said council member Muhsin Abdul Hamid.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 1:39:55 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Muslim....peacekeepers????
That's a neat trick. Maybe they can take over for Seigfried & Roy at The Mirage....
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 22:32 Comments || Top||

Standoff enters second day in Karbala
Shiite Muslim factions in the holy city of Karbala were negotiating to try to end a tense standoff at a mosque where followers of firebrand cleric Moqtada Sadr took at least eight hostages, a police source said Wednesday. "They are negotiating about the situation at al-Mukhaiyam mosque," the police source said. Sadr’s Mehdi Army militia clashed Tuesday with followers of senior Iraqi cleric Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani after his group attempted to seize two of the most revered shrines in Shiite Islam, the mausoleums of the seventh-century leaders Abbas and Hussein.
Tried to bite off more than he could chew.
At least one person was killed and 24 others wounded in the clashes. About 15 of Sadr’s people then retreated to the city’s al-Mukhaiyam mosque, where they were surrounded by Iraqi police, civilians and a US-backed protection force for holy site.
Angry turbaned mob with torches and pitchforks.
Coalition forces said eight people had been taken hostage inside the mosque.
Page 23 in your "Standoff’s For Dummies" handbook.
The top US military commander General Ricardo Sanchez visited Karbala late Tuesday and met with police chief General Abbas Fadl Abud, who recommended the coalition let the Iraqis negotiate a peaceful end to the confrontation at the al-Mukhaiyam mosque.
"You want to let us handle this hot potato?"

A peaceful solution also looked possible as Sadr scrapped plans Wednesday for an Islamic-style government he had announced last week in the aftermath of clashes that left two US soldiers and two Iraqi Shiites dead in Baghdad’s Sadr City, his stronghold of support. "Until now there have been no demonstrations of public support for this government, and as a result, I cannot create it," he told Al-Arabiya satellite news channel.
Translation - "Oops, I grabbed for power too soon."
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 9:43:14 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "Until now there have been no demonstrations of public support for this government, and as a result, I cannot create it," he told Al-Arabiya satellite news channel.

It's highly doubtful that a lack of support is going to put an end to the guy's ambitions. Standard operating procedure here is to pull back and wait for another opportunity to try again.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 10:18 Comments || Top||

#2  Sounds like Sadr's hands may be dirty regarding some of the other crap that's been going on in Karbala and the surrounding area. Perhaps the Iraqi people need to whack this dude early, rather than let him get too deeply situated. Yesterday sounds about right. People who demand power and respect usually do so because they don't deserve it.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 10:21 Comments || Top||

#3  I'll have to look this up in my "Encyclopedia of Muslim Holy Places". I'm up to Volume 65 and should soon be through the ones that begin with "B"...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 10:55 Comments || Top||

#4  .Yeap,sounds like Iraq's version of"A good ol' boy"needs to bust a cap on his ass
Posted by: Raptor || 10/15/2003 11:11 Comments || Top||

#5  Hussein was Fatima's kid. Big wheel, big deal martyr killed at the battle of Ashura.

Hint: if you want to piss off every Shia on the planet, just go mess with that shrine.

al-Sadr's obviously insane.
Posted by: mojo || 10/15/2003 11:23 Comments || Top||

#6  insane or desperate. Word is his demonstrations are attracting smaller crowds. Evidently hes losing ground to Sistani, Hakim and the governing council (and, implicitly, to the Americans) So he gambled.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/15/2003 13:47 Comments || Top||

#7  Sadr is young. Soon to be young and dead. The other religious leaders have tolerated him because he is a front for Iran, and out of respect for his family, but he's been marked for a while.

Being a Shia sucks. The sect was formed out of a military defeat, and all its holy men are martyrs and all its holidays commorate somebody's martyrdom. They've never won a war, get their butts kicked regularily, and the other 80% of Moslems in the world consider them herectical nuts.
Posted by: Chuck Simmins || 10/15/2003 13:54 Comments || Top||

#8  Especially sick with that Massive Head Wound Harry routine they do. Even to to kids. Picture you cutting your own little boy for the head wound bleeding. Now you get the picture. It's not cultural, it's bloody sick.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 15:29 Comments || Top||

#9  "Evidently hes losing ground to Sistani, Hakim and the governing council (and, implicitly, to the Americans) So he gambled."

Um... I may be misremembering the names but isn't Hakim the guy that was murdered with a bomb a while ago?

Anyway, from what I've read, Sadr does seem to be one of the harshest Islamofascists currently in Iraq, so let's hope you are right and he's indeed losing power...
Posted by: Aris Katsaris || 10/15/2003 17:20 Comments || Top||

#10  SAIRI is the Hakim family business. It'll be awhile before they run out of them.
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 20:34 Comments || Top||

U.S. Rejects Timetable Proposal for Iraq
The United States rejected a proposal by France, Russia and Germany Tuesday to add a timetable for the transfer of power to Iraqis to its new resolution and give Secretary-General Kofi Annan a role in its preparation. The absence of a timetable diminished the likelihood that the resolution will be adopted with broad support from the 15-member Security Council. But it is still likely to get at least the minimum nine ``yes’’ votes needed for adoption. A vote could come early as Wednesday afternoon.
And then we’ll see if the French really will abstain.
The timetable was the centerpiece of a package of amendments offered by France, Russia and Germany — and later supported by China — in an effort to reach a compromise with the United States on the transition from U.S. occupation to the restoration of Iraqi sovereignty. While the United States agreed to several other amendments proposed by the three countries at a closed-door Security Council meeting Tuesday night, French, Russian and German diplomats privately expressed disappointment at the rejection of the timetable.
"Curses! Foiled again!"
The latest U.S. draft, with the amendments that were accepted, was being sent by council members to their capitals. U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte earlier Tuesday asked all council nations to be prepared to vote, starting Wednesday afternoon. Diplomats said the United States wants a resolution adopted before President Bush leaves for Asia on Thursday. ``We’ll certainly look for the broadest possible support in a resolution, but we’re also looking to get a resolution,’’ State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said Tuesday.
"Train’s leaving the station!"
Bush’s main aim in seeking a new resolution is to get more countries to contribute troops and money to stabilize and rebuild Iraq. The resolution would authorize a multinational force — sought by some potential troop contributing nations — led by the United States. Washington has also pressed for a vote ahead of a major donors’ conference for Iraq in Madrid, Spain on Oct. 23-24, and the U.S. draft urges the 191 U.N. member states to make ``substantial pledges.’’ Many council members are concerned at the mixed message the U.N.’s most powerful body would send if the resolution was only approved by a slim margin. Annan said Tuesday he hoped the United States would work ``to get as broad support as possible because I have always maintained that the council is at its best and has the greatest impact when it is united.’’
Hey Kofi: what’s 15 times 0 equal?
Trying to find a compromise that would get support from all council nations, France, Russia and Germany dropped their demand for a handover of sovereignty to an Iraqi provisional government within months. Instead, the three countries proposed early Tuesday giving Annan and the Security Council a role in establishing a timetable for transferring power, along with the U.S.-led Coalition Provisional Authority and the Iraqi Governing Council.
That’s the camel’s nose desperately trying to get under the tent.
But the United States rejected the proposal, sticking with its original text that calls on the coalition ``to return governing responsibilities and authorities to the people of Iraq as soon as practicable.’’ Instead of a timetable, it added a request to the coalition to report to the Security Council ``on the progress being made.’’
And there’s the camel’s nose being trod upon by a large combat boot.
The three countries submitted the amendments following a discussion between French President Jacques Chirac, Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, diplomats said. France’s U.N. Ambassador Jean-Marc de La Sabliere rejected a suggestion that France - which opposed the U.S.-led war and lobbied hard for power to be transferred to the Iraqis by the end of the year — had capitulated.
"We merely advanced to the rear!"
But he called the package of amendments ``the minimum’’ that the three countries would accept ``in a spirit of compromise.’’
I smell ... veto!
Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Yuri Fedotov said Moscow’s position on the resolution will depend on ``the readiness of the authors of the draft resolution to take into account these ideas of ours,’’ the Interfax news agency reported. In addition to the timetable for a hand over, the United States also rejected a proposed amendment that would set a date for a constitutional conference. But Washington accepted an amendment leaving open the possibility of establishing an interim government in the future. Russia, France and Germany proposed an amendment that would end the multinational force’s mandate ``on the day the council receives a report from the secretary-general that an internationally recognized, representative government of Iraq was sworn in.’’ The United States accepted a revision that would terminate the mandate ``unless the new government of Iraq requests otherwise.’’
Turned that one back nicely, eh?
Posted by: Steve White || 10/15/2003 2:30:48 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  But it is still likely to get at least the minimum nine ``yes’’ votes needed for adoption. Get that Gerhard, Schroeder and Vlad? You get just one vote. You set it up so no matter how much power you obtain...you just aren't special anymore. Tough going when you want your wish to be the world's command.

As for the veto...... can you say 1441?? What's 15x0??!! LOL!
Posted by: B || 10/15/2003 9:55 Comments || Top||

#2  Does anyone have any idea why we're doing this ? It's not for money or troops. Just to get the whiners to shut it ?
Posted by: eyeyeye || 10/15/2003 10:32 Comments || Top||

#3  The United States rejected a proposal by France, Russia and Germany Tuesday to add a timetable for the transfer of power to Iraqis to its new resolution..

Looks like the French will have to wait a bit longer before trying to undermine U.S. efforts there.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 10:39 Comments || Top||

#4  newsflash: Pakistan announced they will vote yes, and China said they are "more and more positive" about the resolution and hope it gets more votes.

Yes! the weasels are now well and truely f**ked.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/15/2003 21:07 Comments || Top||

China bankrolling Russian weapons systems
From Geostrategy-Direct.com, requires subscription...
China is funding key developments of Russia’s advanced weapons systems.
The cuddly panda people at the PLA ar not our friends, remember that.
According to a new report produced by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, China is increasing its funding of Russian military companies "capable of providing technologies better than that available to the Russian armed forces."
They can’t steal it from us now, with GW at the helm, so they get it from Russia at a price.
Some Russians also are concerned that technology transfer to China is a potential threat to Russian companies.
The report was produced by U.S. specialist Richard Fisher and was based on the recent MAKS military exhibition in Russia.
The report said Russia showcased several new weapons systems that had been developed with Chinese support.
"One of the surprises of MAKS 2003 was the TOPOL-E, a radar jammer designed specifically to target the U.S. Navy E-2 HAWKEYE radar aircraft," the report stated.
"This program was a beneficiary of ’company funding.’ It is reasonable to speculate that China was indeed the funding source for this new threat to U.S. forces."
The Chinese have about 300 Su-27 and Su-30 fighter-bombers, twice that of published estimates, the report said, quoting an official of the Sukhoi company that makes them.
The report also stated that Russia has modified the Su-30 Airborne Warning and Control System that will be exported to China.
"It is very likely that this new radar will equip Su-30 units now being acquired by the PLAN. This is very significant as finding naval targets is often more important than being able to attack them," the report stated.
The radar will give the Chinese military the capability of targeting U.S. ships.
Specifically the US 7th Fleet.
The report also disclosed Russia’s help to China with other high-tech weapons, including precision guided bombs.
In 2000 the U.S. dissuaded Israel from selling Phalcon early warning jets to China.
The ChiComs are into a long term planned upgrade and buildup of their capabilities. They want to kick our asses out of the spaces of the Pacific in their spheres of influence.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 4:46:46 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  "You've got your failure in my ineptitude!"

"Oh yeah? Well, you've got your ineptitude in my failure!"
Posted by: BH || 10/15/2003 17:28 Comments || Top||

#2  This is not a good development. It means that we will have to actually load some anti-air missiles on our destroyers and cruisers. Would be fun to wipe out the equivalent of China's GDP for an entire 5 year plan in one turkey-shoot.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 20:50 Comments || Top||

#3  Sounds like a job for the AMMRAM 120(code name Phoenix)
Radar guided,fire and forget air to air missle,range 120miles+.
Posted by: Raptor || 10/16/2003 11:02 Comments || Top||

Home Front
Ferry Accident!
NEW YORK - A Staten Island ferry crashed Wednesday as it was docking, severely injuring at least 10 people after it slammed into the wooden pilings along the side of the dock. Some victims lost limbs in the accident.

"There were numerous injuries like fractures and lacerations," said Fire Department spokeswoman Maria Lamberti. "There were a couple of people with amputations — legs and arms."

The victims were taken to Staten Island University Hospital and St. Vincent’s Hospital following the accident around 3:20 p.m. Firefighters aboard the damaged ferry sifted through the rubble looking for victims.

"Everyone just jumped for their lives," rider Bob Carroll told television station NY1. "It was like an absolute horror. ... The whole side of the boat looked like an opener on a can."

The accident occurred as the ship, the Andrew J. Barberi, arrived on the Staten Island end of its run across New York Harbor, said Mike Loughran, a fire department spokesman.

Justin Girard, a witness to the accident, told NY1 that he saw smoke and heard screams after the ferry crashed at the St. George Terminal. The front end of the ferry suffered extensive damage to the right side of its hull.

A debris field of about 400 yards surrounded the damaged boat, said Coast Guard Chief Dave French.

The ferry, which has three levels, has a capacity of 6,000, but it is unclear how many people were aboard at the time of the accident. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who was attending the New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox game, left Yankee Stadium to head to the scene.

The ship sustained a huge hole on its side, the official said, and debris may have fallen on some passengers.

The Department of Transportation confirmed the accident, but could provide nothing further.

The ferry carries 70,000 commuters per day on the 25-minute free ride between Staten Island and lower Manhattan. Five boats make 104 daily trips between the two boroughs.

The accident temporarily suspended service on the ferry, and closed down traffic on the lower level

On Sept. 19, 1997, a car plunged off the Andrew J. Barberi as it was docking in Staten Island, causing minor injuries to the driver and a deckhand who was knocked overboard by the car.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 4:46:32 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Judging from the wind I saw swirling in Yankees stadium, it would have been an extremely dangerous night to be on the water. The side of a ferry will act like a sail in the wind. If you add a current into the equation, it is easy to find yourself in extremis. I'll include the passengers and crew in my prayers tonight.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 20:45 Comments || Top||

#2  The wind is brutal in the Northeast today. Almost got blown off the highway 3 or 4 times on the ride home. First thing that came to mind when I heard about this.
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 21:04 Comments || Top||

#3  Yes it was, but as long as Crimson Jihad the Red Sox won, I'll take it... :-)
Posted by: Raj || 10/15/2003 22:02 Comments || Top||

#4  Sad to say, there were massive injuries, and the skipper has reportedly attempted suicide....
Wash Post:
The ferry pilot, responsible for docking the vessel, fled the scene immediately after the crash, went to his Staten Island home and attempted suicide, a police official said on the condition of anonymity. The pilot was rushed to the same hospital as many of the victims and underwent surgery.
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 22:17 Comments || Top||

#5  WND is now reporting ten dead.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 22:31 Comments || Top||

Middle East
Paleo groups deny Gaza attack
Two major Palestinian resistance groups have denied involvement in a blast which killed three American security guards and injured another in the Gaza Strip. Both Hamas and Islamic Jihad distanced themselves from the roadside explosion which devastated a diplomatic convoy in Beit Hanoun on Wednesday morning.
I think Beit Hanoun is usually Hamas territory...
An armed group calling itself the Popular Resistance Committees denied any responsibility for the deadly attack after AFP said it recieved a call from a member of the group saying it carried it out.
"We dunnit and we're glad!"
"No, we didn't!"
Palestinian President Yasser Arafat piously condemned the attack as an "ugly crime", and said he had ordered an investigation.
"Mahmoud! Find out who dunnit. Tell 'em not to do it again for awhile."
The FBI also said it will send a team to the Gaza Strip to investigate the bombing, said US ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer. And chief Palestinian peace negotiator Saeb Erekat said no Palestinian group would commit such an attack.
"No, no! Certainly not!"
Posted by: Fred Pruitt || 10/15/2003 14:15 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6458 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Since we can't seem to determine which group caused the blast, let exterminate ALL of them. Seems the easiest thing to do.
Posted by: Cyber Sarge (VRWC CA Chapter) || 10/15/2003 14:37 Comments || Top||

#2  Both Hamas and Islamic Jihad distanced themselves from the roadside explosion

Yeah, distanced themselves by the length of the wire to the detonator.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 14:42 Comments || Top||

#3  The FBI also said it will send a team to the Gaza Strip to investigate the bombing, said US ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer.

"Achmed, grab some rocks! See those guys over there? Eff-Bee-Eye people. Americans! Target practice!"

And chief Palestinian peace negotiator Saeb Erekat said no Palestinian group would commit such an attack.

Of course not. Now if they were Jews, that would be a different story...
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 14:50 Comments || Top||

#4  come on gang, let's take bets on how long before the theories surface in the Arab world that it was the work of the Mossad trying to "derail" the peace process. I mean, if they could do the 9/11 attacks, and send invisible agents with hypodermic needles to poison Arafat, surely a little roadside bomb would be child's play.
Posted by: Dripping Sarcasm || 10/15/2003 16:24 Comments || Top||

#5  Dripping Sarcasm: Grab yer barf bag - cause it took all of 2 minutes for our own demoncrats to start in with this crap - said lunacy was spotted on Indymedia and Democratic Underground (hat-tip to the LGF folk). Pathetic.
Posted by: Rex Mundi || 10/15/2003 18:02 Comments || Top||

#6  It was by Arafish's orders in exchange for a chunk of Saddam Cash™ courtesy of the Syrians.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 20:58 Comments || Top||

IDF- Paleo Roundup
JPost Reg Req’d
Troops shot and killed a member of the radical Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) at the village of Enbata near Tulkarm on the West Bank Wednesday.
Sympathy meter must’ve been damaged in the earlier GAza blast dammit
The Palestinian approached an IDF checkpoint recently set up in the area, and when called on to stop, the man attempted to flee the area. Soldiers opened fire on the man after he again ignored their calls to stop.
"stop or I’ll shoot!"
"nice aiming Avner"

Army Radio reported that troops identified the man as a PFLP militant who has been in an Israeli jail in the past.
another releasee permanently jugged
Elsewhere in Tulkarm, troops at a checkpoint west of the city arrested a Palestinian woman who tried to attack them with a knife.
The woman, a Tulkarm resident, arrived at the checkpoint, pulled out a knife and rushed at soldiers manning the checkpoint. Soldiers drew their weapons on the oncoming attacker, who then fainted just meters in front of the troops.
"What the hell?"
The woman has been handed over to the General Security Service for questioning.
Prior to being shipped to the looney bin...
In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians lobbed grenades at IDF forces near the town of Rafah on the Israel-Egypt border. There were no injuries in the attack.
"The IDF pulled the pins on the grenades and threw them back"
The IDF has been operating in Rafiah to expose and destroy tunnels used to smuggle weapons from Egypt into the Gaza Strip.
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 1:49:04 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

Americans investigating blast attacked by Paleo stone throwers
EFL and News
Soon after after the blast, the IDF sent tanks and armored vehicles under cover of a helicopter gunship into the northern Gaza areas of Beit Hanoun and Beit Lehiya to aid the Americans in evacuating the wounded man and the bodies of the victims. An IDF rescue helicopter evacuated the wounded man to Soroka Hospital in Beer Sheva. Later in the day, American security officials investigating the bomb attack left the scene abruptly after Palestinian youths threw stones and rocks at them. The investigators were taking pictures of the bloodied, twisted remains of the van when half a dozen kids threw stones and rocks at them as about 200 Palestinians looked on.
Fuckers...we won’t forget either. Ariel? Build the wall, whack the "militants" - go ahead, we won’t stop you
Palestinian police fired in the air to chase away the stone throwers, and U.S. officials rushed into their cars and sped off. Palestinian police beat some people in the crowd, while pushing the spectators back. The CIA spokesman in Washington, Bill Harlow, refuted the reports that CIA officials were in the convoy, saying that "there were no CIA people involved." The American embassy in Tel Aviv said that contrary to initial reports, U.S. special Middle East envoy John Wolf was not in the convoy. Wolf is responsible for monitoring compliance with the road map peace plan. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was to have paid a visit later in the day to U.S. Ambassador Daniel Kurtzer’s sukkah, but the bombing forced cancellation of the meeting.
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 1:39:02 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

Home Front
Just how sour are those California Democratic Grapes?
Tip to WND:
By Commissar Maralyn Lois Polak
No sooner do I return from spending Recall Week in California, alleged land of fruits and nuts, when all Hail breaks loose. By which I mean – besides Rush the Uber-Moralist revealing he’s a prescription-pill junkie – evangelist Pat Robertson, that great American, yes, none other than that Mr. Holier-Than-Thee-Religious-Broadcaster-Himself, urges nuking the State Department yet again for those who weren’t paying attention the first time he uttered it last June! Will wonders never cease! I mean, what’s with those boys? California’s bad enough. There was enough sickening television "news" coverage of Der GropenFuhrer striking smug and smarmy victory poses before the camera to last five sequels, er, lifetimes. Funny, I kept waiting for his skin to peel off, revealing the cold, shiny steel beneath.
This is the same woman who VEHEMENTLY defended the Fornicator-in-Chief!
Hasn’t happened yet, though we can hope, can’t we? And his horrifically codependent Stepford-Kennedy wife glued to his side — who not only smiles like him now but also contends Arnold’s love of women is ratified by his bringing her coffee each morning.
A cheap shot at the mans family?
Yuck. Color me pushy and controlling, but I couldn’t bother to Win one for the Un-Zipper! Such unbearable sadness I experienced watching the recall on television, seeing Gray Davis, and the pathetic cadre of wusses and wimps known as the Democrats, lose so ... easily. They didn’t — and don’t — have the slightest clue how to counter Republican dirty tricks, let alone run an effective hardball campaign, or deal with Himbo Politics, er, the Politics of Image.
At least she found a true description of the Democrats.
And that slick, opportunistic zero, Bustamante, should be ashamed of his lack of loyalty.
Opportunistic Zero? I Hope the Hispanic community doesn’t hear read that.
The answer for the Democrats isn’t for Davis to attack Arnold’s accent, coming across like an arrogant elitist and turning the electorate even more against him, but to focus on larger and more dangerous political realities revealing a truly national threat:
-The state of California has been hijacked by the Republicans just as America has. Throw Arnold out of office before he gets entrenched there. He’s as qualified for governor as your big toe.
One Republican State Official, seven Democrats. Oh yeah that’s hijacking.

-California’s plight reflects past policies predating Davis, as well as Republicans gutting and defunding the U.S. government on the federal level, leaving nothing for the states.
Shift the blame on the Republicans for Grey’s FAILURES.·

-Impeach Bush! Recall him for betraying the trust of the American people, for lying to the United States and the world, for needlessly sacrificing the lives and safety of ever-increasing numbers of our soldiers, and for squandering huge fiscal surpluses on his futile war games and oil strategies. Facts!
Show some facts or shut your pie-hole.
Compared to Arnold, Gray Davis is a class act — a gentleman down to the last sentence of his needlessly generous, calm concession speech, when a fire-and-brimstone valedictory would have been the ticket. And I predict we probably have not heard the last about those hundreds of thousands of "missing" votes.
They need a MILLION 'missing votes’ to change the election.
During my week buzzing in and around San Francisco, I didn’t meet one person who admitted voting for Schwarzenegger. Not even on the plane. Of course, I wasn’t visiting that redneck paradise, Orange County.
SF County voted 80% against the recall, no surprise there.
But has al-Qaida finally contaminated America’s water? Was over-the-top Pat Robertson actually channeling Ramtha? Whatever. Not only does his irresponsible "nuke" rhetoric leave me breathless, er, speechless, it reminds me of a truly tasteless joke that begins "There’s a little Terrorist in all of us ..." I promise I shan’t titillate you with the rest. And didn’t Trotsky suggest, "Terrorism is Liberalism with a gun"?
Finally a point of mutual agreement!
Clearly, the world — your world and mine — has turned quite upside down. The California recall election, Rush, Pat — all Signs of the Rapture. Hurry up and find a large toadstool to hide under, Bunky, because the End Times they are nigh!
Doom, Death, Destruction, Homelessness, Welfare, Hunger, and littering. All of these will be on the rise now that Arnold is in office. Waah, waah, waah! This has become the Dems playbook for when they lose an election: Whine, cry foul, accuse, defame, litigate, and then sulk. I wish them well as the sail into the oblivion!
Posted by: Cyber Sarge (VRWC CA Chapter) || 10/15/2003 12:09:50 PM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Maralyn Lois Polak is a Philadelphia-based journalist, essayist, novelist, editor and radio personality.

A good reason for her to STAY in Philly and confine her oral farting to PA politics, something she would presumably know more about.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 12:30 Comments || Top||

#2  No, confine her verbal lunacies to a single room with padding on the walls, floor, and ceiling. And give her a special outfit, too.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 12:33 Comments || Top||

#3  Actually, Ms. Polak would be a good candidate to cover the ongoing conference of the Organization of Islamic States. They certainly aren't the wussies and wimps that seem to annoy her so much.
Posted by: mhw || 10/15/2003 12:51 Comments || Top||

#4  Maralyn Lois Polak is still angry that FDR died, and can no longer continue to screw up the country. She must drink Drano every morning - she's always angry about something. For me, the best way to deal with her is to ignore her - she's seldom right, always opinionated to the far, FAR, left, and has about as much common sense as a garden slug. I have much more important things to do with my time - like watching grass grow.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 12:56 Comments || Top||

#5  "Actually, Ms. Polak would be a good candidate to cover the ongoing conference of the Organization of Islamic States. They certainly aren't the wussies and wimps that seem to annoy her so much."

Be careful what you wish for.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 13:02 Comments || Top||

#6  "Gray Davis is a class act – a gentleman down to the last sentence of his needlessly generous, calm concession speech...."

Words cannot describe what a wretched apparatchik of a "man" Grey Davis is: defending him is unconscionable, partisan, and pretty much after the fact as his own party didn't exactly pull out the stops to save him. One polite speech by Red Davis hardly makes up for a lifetime of mud slinging and character assassination - the man is the worst of the worst What this hack fails to mention is that the recall went through by a sizable majority in an election with a record turn out. There is no denying it: the people of California, liberal and conservative alike, hated Davis with a passion rare for this flaky state.

Oh, and Maralyn, if you had visited any bar, coffee house, or restaurant in San Francisco's financial district - you know, the place that makes the rest of the city possible - it would have taken you about .001 seconds to find somebody who voted in favor the recall. Stop by my companies office on Market Street. Take it from me: not only do I work there but I happen to be a member of The Peoples Advocate, and was also one of the first 1000 people to sign the petition back when it began. And, last but certainly not least, I collected signatures for it.... in Berkeley. It wasn't very hard, either, because even the tinfoil hat crowd hated him. Urban liberals hated him, rural conservatives hated him, soccer moms hated him, Greens hated him, NRA members hated him, immigrants hated him, small business people hated him.... but, most of all, car owners hated him - which is most of the "red neck" population of this state.

Maralyn, if you couldn't find anyone on your flight who voted for Arnie you were traveling in a crop-duster. And your pilot lied to you.
Posted by: Secret Master || 10/15/2003 13:35 Comments || Top||

#7  Another liberal shouting down to the people rather than considering that they might actually see things a bit more clearly than she does.
Posted by: Yank || 10/15/2003 13:38 Comments || Top||

#8  "You're all stupid! Stupid, stupid, STUPID!"
-- Plan 9 from Outer Space
Posted by: mojo || 10/15/2003 13:55 Comments || Top||

#9  Swartznegger won election---Women and Minorities hit hardest. Film at 11.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 19:22 Comments || Top||

Gregg Easterbrook Has A Problem
Gregg Easterbrook at the New Republic has a problem with the violence in "Kill Bill". He says it’s the Jews fault. Hat tip to LGF and Meryl Yourish(hint, she’s not happy). EFL:
Set aside what it says about Hollywood that today even Disney thinks what the public needs is ever-more-graphic depictions of killing the innocent as cool amusement. Disney’s CEO, Michael Eisner, is Jewish; the chief of Miramax, Harvey Weinstein, is Jewish. Yes, there are plenty of Christian and other Hollywood executives who worship money above all else, promoting for profit the adulation of violence. Does that make it right for Jewish executives to worship money above all else, by promoting for profit the adulation of violence? Recent European history alone ought to cause Jewish executives to experience second thoughts about glorifying the killing of the helpless as a fun lifestyle choice.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 11:05:08 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Set aside what it says about Hollywood that today even Disney thinks what the public needs is ever-more-graphic depictions of killing the innocent as cool amusement.

This is the standard liberal canard about movie violence. The truth, however, is that the average Hollywood movie isn't real ambiguous about good and evil. When innocents are killed, this is usually depicted as an evil act, for which the villain subsequently pays with his life. The protagonist in "Kill Bill" isn't slaughtering innocents - she is taking revenge on the people responsible for the murder of her loved ones.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 10/15/2003 11:14 Comments || Top||

#2  He says it’s the Jews fault.

Actually, after reading the article, I get the impression that he seems to think that it's beneath Jewish entertainment executives to produce violent movies.

The fact of the matter is, Jewish executives want to make money too, and they are just providing what the masses want. The average Schmoe knows the difference between movies and real life and isn't going to go on some wild killing spree just because he or she saw someone in some stupid movie bumping off people by the score. Easterbrook needs to lighten up - it's only a movie and nothing more. It's E-N-T-E-R-T-A-I-N-M-E-N-T.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 13:08 Comments || Top||

#3  I don know what the big deal is.. kill bill sucked.
Posted by: dcreeper || 10/15/2003 15:13 Comments || Top||

#4  The whole essay is so stupid I have to assume he just wanted to see if people were reading.
Posted by: Sade || 10/15/2003 15:14 Comments || Top||

Iranian Nobel prize winner receives hero’s welcome
Guardian EFL
Nobel Peace prize winner Shirin Ebadi received an emotional reception last night as thousands of Iranians greeted the human rights lawyer with chants of "Hello Freedom!"
"Goodbye turbans!"
"This prize is not mine, it belongs to our people," Ms Ebadi told the jubilant crowd over a megaphone after arriving on a flight from Paris.
So the Iranian people are recieving a reward for being peaceful?
"This prize means that Iran’s desire for realising human rights, democracy and peace has been heard by the world," she said to roars of approval from the crowd. In a spontaneous demonstration of sympathy with Ms Ebadi’s struggle for civil rights and freedom of expression, Iranians of all ages and background gathered at Tehran airport to celebrate. "I feel so grateful. I can’t explain it," said a 45-year-old woman called Shabnam. "We feel somehow that someone is going to explain to the world what is in our hearts."
The world's more interested in stagnation stability than in what's in your hearts...
Ms Ebadi became the first Iranian and the first Muslim woman to win the Nobel last Friday. She was welcomed by Vice-President Mohammad Ali Abtahi, but earlier yesterday President Mohammad Khatami belittled the Nobel winner, describing the prize as "not very important".
Whoa! Ain't those grapes sour!
The president, who has portrayed himself as a champion of democracy and reform, asked: "Do we have to issue an official message about whatever happens in the country? In my opinion, the Nobel peace prize is not very important."
He sounds a little bitter.
If he'd gotten it, betcha it would have been more important...
"Of course, the prize on literature is important, but the one for peace is not," he said.
"After all, Jimmy Carter and Yasser Arafat both have them..."
Must be an avid reader.
He was happy that an Iranian had received the award, but hoped that the recipient would bear in mind the interest of the Islamic world and Iran and "not allow the position she has achieved to be exploited".
This whole peace idea doesn’t jibe with our intention to attack Israel with nukes. Complex internal contradictions are popular in literature, though. That’s why literature is so important... except for that Satanic Verses guy. We’re still looking for his ass.
Mr Khatami’s critics dismiss him as too weak to fight Iran’s rigid theocracy, and last night his comments were ridiculed by Ms Ebadi’s supporters: "The world understood this prize but our own officials didn’t understand it," said Nahid, a 30-year-old woman. "I am optimistic because this prize provides a degree of security for Ms Ebadi and this will bring an opportunity to bring up women’s issues in a more radical way," she said.
Yeah. You should do that.
Young Iranians danced and led renditions of the pre-revolution national anthem as they waited for Ms Ebadi to emerge from the airport terminal. Women in the crowd wore white headscarves and carried white flowers, symbolising peace, in an event organised largely by word of mouth. "This shows the world has heard our voices after 24 years of imprisonment," said Kefayat Kousha, 38, a school teacher. "People are hopeful again."
We’re hopefull as well.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 10:56:16 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Well, Ms. Ebadi, congradulations, and we hope your people's bandwagon wins the race with the Mullah's atomic bandwagon, or you both will be smoking holes in the sand. The stakes are high, folks. Better get crackin'.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 11:19 Comments || Top||

#2  This is one of the few times that the noble peace prize comittee ever did anything useful. Now she can stand up to the muslim theocracy in Iran out in the open. If they knock her off she becomes a symbol for their cause. It's not gonna single handidly change anything but it helps...
Posted by: Damn_Proud_American || 10/15/2003 11:25 Comments || Top||

#3  When push comes to shove, it's not clear to me how the Mullah's will give up power unless somebody is willing to take up arms against them. I just do not see them succumbing to 'people power' type demands of reform. The folks quoted in this article appear unlikely to resort to force of arms or inspire others to do so.
Posted by: JAB || 10/15/2003 11:26 Comments || Top||

#4  You are obviously right JAB but the Nobel prize might end up playing a role. For example, if the Mullocracy goons beat up a pro-Ebani demonstration and the local army decides to side with the demonstrators, things could happen very fast.
Posted by: mhw || 10/15/2003 11:31 Comments || Top||

#5  If she speaks out against the Iranian theocracy while in Iran and out in the open, it makes the theocracy look weak and gives confidence to those that would try to tear it down. That's all the people need is confidence and organization. They outnumber the goons but they get hit hard every time they rise up. If the theocracy is afraid to hit her hard then the movement can build momentum... killing her won't do them much good because it would cause outrage and probably serve the same purpose in a shorter period of time as her speaking out. Time will tell.
Posted by: Damn_Proud_American || 10/15/2003 11:56 Comments || Top||

#6  Must be an avid reader.

If I recall correctly, Khatami used to be head of the national library, or sumpin. I had always hoped that a fellow who loved books couldn't be all bad.
Posted by: Angie Schultz || 10/15/2003 11:59 Comments || Top||

#7  Given that Jimmah won the last prize, I had thought the committee would make former IL. gov. and capital punishment opponent George Ryan the recipient just to spite the US and former Texas Gov. Bush even more. I have accepted the result gracefully, however, since this lady seems to be the type any country would be proud to have as a citizen. Apparently the committee actually has decided to be proactive and raise the profile of Ebadi in Iran, helping so much the people's cause there. Good choice.
Posted by: Michael || 10/15/2003 15:02 Comments || Top||

Home Front
Spy-case reporters must reveal sources
No, not "that" spy case. EFL:
A federal judge has ordered five reporters to reveal sources for stories that portrayed Wen Ho Lee, a former nuclear weapons scientist, as a chief suspect in a Chinese espionage investigation. U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson ordered the reporters to answer questions about their sources and to provide Lee’s attorneys with notes and other documents from their reporting. "It does not detract from the importance of the First Amendment principle at stake to conclude, in the instant case at least," that making possible evidence of government leaks available for trial outweighs the interest of keeping sources confidential, Jackson wrote.
Gee, I wonder if this could apply to any other spy case involving reporters?
Lee is suing the Energy Department and Justice Department, alleging government officials provided private information about him to reporters and suggested he was a suspect in an investigation into the possible theft of nuclear secrets from Los Alamos National Laboratory.
SEE: Atlanta Olympics Bombing, Anthrax Mailings, Joseph Wilson’s wife, etc..
The journalists ordered to give depositions under Jackson’s order are James Risen and Jeff Gerth of the New York Times, Robert Drogin of the Los Angeles Times, H. Josef Hebert of the AP and Pierre Thomas, formerly of CNN. Former Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, now governor of New Mexico, has said in a deposition that he did not recall whether he talked to the reporters. Other Energy and Justice Department officials also said they did not recall such discussions or did not provide the reporters with the information.
Saying "I can’t recall" means you can’t be procecuted for lying on a deposition. It’s become the statement of choice when you get caught doing something you shouldn’t have.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 10:32:20 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  A federal judge has ordered five reporters to reveal sources for stories that portrayed Wen Ho Lee, a former nuclear weapons scientist, as a chief suspect in a Chinese espionage investigation.

Only in America can a spy sue the government officials involved in investigating him. The Chinese have a much more effective way of discouraging espionage - a bullet in the back of the head.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 10/15/2003 11:09 Comments || Top||

#2  They don't need to recall, they just need to look at their call log and notes.
Posted by: Anonymous || 10/15/2003 11:17 Comments || Top||

#3  The Chinese have a much more effective way of discouraging espionage
Yeah, they get the FBI agent in the sack and the investigation goes away. Wonder if Wen Ho Lee was banging anyone?
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 14:26 Comments || Top||

#4  Yeah, they get the FBI agent in the sack and the investigation goes away.

That's encouraging espionage in the US, not discouraging it in China. The Chinese don't bother with elaborate trials for those suspected of spying for a foreign power - the Chinese procedure is essentially a summary execution.* Wen Ho Lee got to stay in America - if the US had a spy like him in China and this spy was discovered, he would be dead, after having gone through a round of severe beatings to find out what he had disclosed. Let me put it this way - they would cremate his body to avoid showing his relatives what had been done to him.

* Note that I'm referring to actual spying, not the trumped-up charges against Chinese American academics doing social research in China.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 10/15/2003 14:49 Comments || Top||

Africa: West
BBC - Liberia ’war is over’
Liberia’s new leader, Gyude Bryant, has promised a fresh start and an end to 14 years of conflict. "My people, the war is over," he said after taking the oath of office while holding the Bible.
Doesn’t he mean that major combat operions have ceased? Or does he mean that we hit the rim so the shot clock is reset?
The ceremony was attended by West African leaders, heavily guarded rebels and government officials.
Nothing like some heavily guarded dignataries. Who is being guarded from whom? I thought we were all friends now.
"If there’s no peace in Liberia, there’s no peace in West Africa," said President Olusegun ("Ollie") Obasanjo of Nigeria (prophectically), which has contributed the bulk of the 4,000 peacekeeping troops in Liberia. Mr Bryant’s inauguration speech was met with cheers and standing ovations as he promised to tackle corruption and injustice. The BBC’s Paul Welsh in the capital, Monrovia, says it was an accomplished performance from a relatively unknown businessman who had never been asked to make a speech like this before. Our correspondent says the new government faces big challenges.
Really? When did that start?
About 45,000 fighters, half of them children, must still be disarmed.
I can’t even get the TV remote from my kids and they’re not armed.
In a reminder of the devastation wrought by the fighting, the guests at the inauguration ceremony were sitting on plastic chairs because the parliament building had recently been looted. And the sombre ceremony was punctuated by the sound of these chairs breaking and people falling to the floor.
There has got to be video of that.
Deposed President Charles Taylor, now in exile in Nigeria, pledged his support for the peace process on the eve of the swearing-in ceremony. His wife, Jewel, travelled from Nigeria to attend the ceremony.
Did she bring some of the chairs back?...
And then reality sets in.

Thousands died in three battles for the capital this year and almost half the population has been forced from their homes. Many thousands remain destitute after fleeing to Monrovia. "We are expecting the Bryant government to come to our aid because we do not have drinking water," said a resident of the Buzzy Quarter slum.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 10:25:22 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  ...and everyone lived happily ever after. Or at least for the next week.
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 10:47 Comments || Top||

#2  Well, this sounds pretty good, right guys? Guys?.... guys?
Posted by: Secret Master || 10/15/2003 12:11 Comments || Top||

BBC: Japan offers $1.5bn to Iraq
Japan is giving $1.5bn (£895m) to help pay for the rebuilding of Iraq. The "near-term aid", as the Japanese government described it, will help with power, education, water and jobs. The Japanese media has speculated that the grants are just the first installment of what could be as much as $5bn over four years.
I am surprised at the size of the pledge and the fact taht it is a grant.
The commitment comes shortly before the arrival of US President George W Bush in Japan to discuss sending Japanese non-combat troops to Iraq.
Are non-combat troops allowed to fight back?
"(Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi) assured me he would work hard to develop a good package," Mr Bush told Fuji TV in an interview. "It sounds like he has done so, and I’m grateful and thankful." But the question of sending soldiers overseas, even in non-combat roles, is a sensitive one in Japan. The country relaxed its post-war ban on members of its Self-Defence Forces serving outside Japanese territory only in the early 1990s — and then only for United Nations-backed peacekeeping operations. With an election due on 9 November, and many Japanese still opposed to deploying troops overseas, Koizumi is having to tread warily on the issue. In this he shares the concerns of South Korea, from whom the US has requested 5,000 combat troops but has receieved only 700 non-combatants. Whether or not the troops are forthcoming, the Japanese contribution is the biggest package of financial aid to be offered by any country to date — even it it is still dwarfed by the $11bn Japan contributed to the cost of the 1991 Gulf War. The money will come from government reserves, and will not require a fresh issue of bonds to finance, according to Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda. "Stability in the region is directly linked to the interests of our country, which relies on the Middle East for almost 90% of its oil imports," Mr Fukuda said.
And in an unrelated stunner...
Vietnam, only three years ago a recipient of humanitarian aid, has shipped 1,467 tonnes of rice worth $500,000 to Iraq, due to be offloaded at the southern Iraq port of Umm Qasr on Wednesday or Thursday.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 10:13:24 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  My my! Look at how unilateral the liberation of Iraq is! Japan and Vietnam. Most excellent.
Posted by: Steve White || 10/15/2003 10:42 Comments || Top||

#2  Japan is still the second largest economy in the world, and at least as much a great power as France or Germany. There support has been important and continues to remain so in this MULTILATERAL effort. Thank you Japan.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 10/15/2003 10:47 Comments || Top||

#3  Vietnam? Whoa, the lefty's will be bullshit about that! After all they did for them, this is the thanks they get...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 10:51 Comments || Top||

#4  I'm wondering how and when we're going to pry all of that Oil for Palaces money out of the French banks it's sitting in.
Posted by: PBMcL || 10/15/2003 12:09 Comments || Top||

#5  Has anyone else noticed how stalwart of an ally Japan has proved to be? They've impressed me over the last few years... they are quickly rising up the ranks of my "countries worth a damn" list. Where do you place them? I have UK, Israel and Japan tied at #2, Australia and Poland. There are a few more close to getting on the list but not quite there yet...
Posted by: Damn_Proud_American || 10/15/2003 13:22 Comments || Top||

Middle East
Followup: Americans Targeted in Gaza Like Baghdad
More details on the Gaza attack from DEBKA:
The explosion that blasted a CIA vehicle outside Beit Hanoun just after an official US embassy convoy entered the northern Gaza Strip through the Erez checkpoint represents a dangerous escalation of Palestinian terrorist aggression. It is a milestone, akin to the August 19 suicide strike against UN headquarters in Baghdad which claimed 15 lives including special UN representative in Iraq Sergio Vieira de Mello. He was the linchpin of American efforts to restore normalcy to the country. Since then, the security situation in Iraq has deteriorated disastrously as international bodies assisting those efforts quietly withdraw themselves and their services from Iraq. The Palestinian assault on an American convoy in the Gaza Strip had the same objective. Despite official denials, the convoy was carrying members of John Wolf’s monitoring team appointed by the US President to bring some normalcy to Palestinian-controlled areas and start defusing Palestinian-Israel warfare.
Erekat said they were taking scholarship applications. I guess that was when his lips fell off. Again...
Clearly, the Palestinian attack aimed at undermining not only the American initiative but also the efforts of diplomats and aid workers posted in region by the United Nations and Europeans, who of late are avoiding contact with Yasser Arafat and threatening to sever ties with him altogether. Now, their representatives and staff will almost certainly emulate their colleagues in Iraq and quietly pull up their stakes in the embattled country.

Arafat, despite his grave health condition, is still up to concocting one of his famous smoke-and- mirrors stratagems. Brandishing an olive branch to conceal the gun, he assigned one of his top disinformation experts, Yasser Abed Rabbo, to the task of luring a group of Israeli left-wingers into the web of deceit which has become known as the “Geneva Accords”. At the very moment that attention focused on the debate aroused by this “peace” initiative, he struck an official American target in the Gaza Strip with swift, dramatic effect as the next stage in his coming terror campaign. Aware he may not have much time left to develop this campaign, he has removed the gloves and is striking out simultaneously in three directions:
1. Against Israel. Wednesday, the 21st victim of October 4 Palestinian suicide attack in a Haifa restaurant died of his wounds.

2. Israel Arab citizens are being increasingly drawn into acts of terror.

3. Strikes against US targets in Palestinian-controlled regions and Israel.
The Beit Hanoun attack Wednesday required a high class of advanced, precise intelligence and logistic preparations that could not have been assembled overnight. The assailants were fed their data on American CIA movements in Gaza by the same foreign intelligence agents who supply the pro-Saddam guerrillas in Iraq.
The convoy consisted of three armor-plated vehicles with two Palestinian police escort cars. The bombers detonated their charge precisely to hit the one carrying CIA guards, the last in line. Fox TV’s Col.(ret.) David Hunt described it as a Chevy Suburban with level 5 armor built to stand RPG hits to the doors and landmine explosions from the bottom. He estimated the landmine that struck the car as between 30 and 50 pounds, similar to the devices used against coalition forces in Iraq. It is possible that an RPG was fired first to crack the heavy armor and make the vehicle susceptible to the landmine. An Associated Press reporter spotted a wire and switch leading from the scene of the attack to a concrete building.

The US cultural attaché rode in another vehicle. He was of no interest to the Palestinian bombers. They were after American security personnel. All the Palestinian terrorist organizations — from the al Aqsa Martyrs brigades to the Hamas — denied responsibility for bomb attack with one voice. American investigators who arrived quickly on the scene near Beit Hanoun were pelted with stones. They fired on the Palestinian mob and injured some. A similar incident occurred outside Gaza City’s Shifa hospital where US officials attended injured and dead.

An Israeli tank force entered the northern Gaza Strip to restore order and take command of the highways. The offer by Palestinian leaders including Arafat to probe the assault jointly with American investigators went down as arrant cynicism. No one doubts any longer that Arafat’s hand stirs the terrorist pot in Israel and Palestinian regions, be the perpetrators Palestinian, Hizballah or al Qaeda, any more than an inquiry is needed to establish who is behind the guerrilla terrorist operations carried by Saddam’s men and al Qaeda in Iraq. It is clear that Arafat is determined to go out on a blaze of Palestinian terror — not just against Israelis but Americans too. The State Department’s first reponse was to order Americans to leave the Gaza Strip and exercise extreme caution in the West Bank.
Time to fire up the death ray again.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 9:24:21 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The death ray's too slow. Time for MOAB.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 9:38 Comments || Top||

#2  No one doubts any longer that Arafat’s hand stirs the terrorist pot in Israel and Palestinian regions,..

Except maybe Shimon Peres.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 10:34 Comments || Top||

#3  The Death Ray should be set on Deep Fry. With a wide azimuth...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 14:26 Comments || Top||

Africa: Central
Uganda rebels target drinkers
Rebels of the Lords Resistance Army (LRA) have killed 23 people as they were drinking the local alcoholic brew in the northern Ugandan district of Lira. The incident occurred on Monday night at Abako market where a group of some 17 rebels rounded up the drinkers before shooting them.
Now that’s too much.
The Lira resident district commissioner, Charles Egou Engwau, told me on Wednesday morning that the rebels also abducted an unknown number of civilians. He said that reinforcements from the Uganda Peoples Defence Force (UPDF) were on Tuesday dispatched to the area to assist the Rhino Defence Unit — a militia unit — to pursue the rebels. Mr Engwau said that the victims in the latest attack mistook the rebels for the Rhino Defence Unit and even exchanged greetings with them in the local language.
"Yo, dude! Sit down and have a brewski!"
"Shortly after they exchanged the greetings, the rebels opened fire on the group that was seated around a pot enjoying a local brew," Mr Engwau said.
"Tastes great!"
"Less Filling!"
"Oh, yeah? Take that!" BANG!

He told me that the rebels had earlier survived a Rhino Defence Unit ambush after one of the militia fighters panicked and fired in the air.The rebels then retreated and moved through the villages abducting people until they reached the local market where they found the drunken victims.
Stealing women and children is one thing, but interupting a keg party means war!
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 8:48:44 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Many Americans will take this attack quite personally.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 10:14 Comments || Top||

#2  Rebels of the Lords Resistance (LRA) have killed 23 people as they were drinking the local alcoholic brew in the northern Ugandan district of Lira.

Looks like the "brewers" are going to have to reduce the alcohol content of their products...
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 10:44 Comments || Top||

Latin America
Revolution Looms in Bolivia
Thousands took to the streets Monday to chant anti-government slogans even after President Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada announced he will shelve controversial plans to export natural gas to the United States and Mexico.
The choice for Bolivia is simple; export natural gas to the United States and Mexico, or don’t export at all. The protestors want the gas processed in Bolivia, by non-existent chemical plants.
The government had estimated that revenues from the gas exports would bring about $1.5 billion a year to Bolivia, South America’s poorest nation.
That’s a good thing, right?
But union leaders and the nation’s poor Indian majority, which has frequently led protests against government attempts to privatize the country’s state industries, argue the economic benefits won’t reach them.
I guess I was wrong. Union and Indian leaders would rather keep the natural gas in Bolivia than let foreign capital come in. They would rather starve than watch other people prosper.
On Monday, public transportation workers went on strike, and shops and banks closed in the city. Sanchez de Lozada’s own vice president criticized him.
President Sanchez de Lozada is being pounded by all sides for trying to lift the country out of its economic hellhole. Unbeliavable.
He vowed "to defeat the sedition and restore order," and called the massive protests, "a plot encouraged from abroad aimed at destroying Bolivia and staining our democracy with blood." He did not elaborate.
He means the protestors are being financed by Brazilian money. He’s right.
The president said his government "is the result of a popular election," and has the support of the armed forces and the police. Sanchez de Lozada, a millionaire businessman who grew up in the United States, was elected in 2002 to a five-year term.
Sanchez de Lozada knows how to eliminate poverty--Capitalism--but the poor remain in love with the ideas that made them poor in the first place--Tribalism, Unionist Collectivism, Nationalism.
Opponents are especially upset the government might pick a port in Chile to ship the gas. Bolivia has been a landlocked nation since it lost its coastline in an 1879 war against Chile, and resentment against its neighbor is still strong.
As I said, Nationalism. Bolivians should dig deeper into history, and remind themselves they started that foolish war. They should resent their past leaders instead of Chile.
Americans may not care what happens to Bolivia, but we should. Another Communist dictatorship means another terrorist base, (see Venezuela.)
Posted by: Sorge || 10/15/2003 7:48:57 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  One wonders how much of a hand in this assorted good buddies in Colombia and Venezuela have?
Posted by: Hiryu || 10/15/2003 8:08 Comments || Top||

#2  Instapundit linked to a story saying one of the major instigators just got back from Libya.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 9:45 Comments || Top||

#3  "Instapundit linked to a story saying one of the major instigators just got back from Libya."
Here it is:
Evo Morales, a member of Congress and the main opposition figure, recognized that the strike had failed to achieve its goals. ''I said it was a little early to call it,'' he told reporters. ``If you're going to organize a strike, you have to be able to carry it out.'' Nonetheless, Morales added, if Sánchez de Lozada decides to export the gas through Chile, ``his government won't last 24 hours. The people will rise up against it. So will the military and the police.''
Economists have said Bolivia's salvation in the coming years lies in a $5 billion plan to export the huge gas reserves -- the largest in Latin America after Venezuela's -- through the Chilean port of Patillos and then on to the United States, another sore spot for leftists here. Morales, who just returned from Libya, on Monday called the United States a ''terrorist nation'' for the Iraq war.
Posted by: Steve || 10/15/2003 10:46 Comments || Top||

#4  Thousands took to the streets Monday to chant anti-government slogans even after President Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada announced he will shelve controversial plans to export natural gas to the United States and Mexico.

Something worth mentioning is that Bolivia is a landlocked country. Exporting natural gas would mean that a pipeline would have to be built to the coast. Whichever country that the pipeline would have gone through also loses.

But union leaders and the nation’s poor Indian majority, which has frequently led protests against government attempts to privatize the country’s state industries, argue the economic benefits won’t reach them.

"Why bother with the complications of prosperity, when we can stay simple and impoverished?"
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 11:19 Comments || Top||

#5  He means the protestors are being financed by Brazilian money.

Brazilian?? What dog do the Brazilians have in this fight? And is it Brazilian government money, or private money?
Posted by: Angie Schultz || 10/15/2003 11:36 Comments || Top||

#6  Angie Schultz;

The Brazilian president, Ignacio "Lula" da Silva is a former Union leader and committed communist. He helped Hugo Chavez break the massive strike last year, and is now inciting and helping the Unions in Bolivia.
Posted by: Sorge || 10/15/2003 12:17 Comments || Top||

#7  About Brazil it's currently ran by a president that is Socialist who stands by while drug and guerilla groups take refuge in the country so they can regroup and resupply.Also his follewers have in their agendas have seized property and rioted without much constraint
Posted by: Anonymous || 10/15/2003 12:24 Comments || Top||

#8  Things are picking up in South America:

Reuters has an article about the swing voters in Venezuala.

Reuters has an article on Outlaws in Brazil that covers the supply lines for the FARC.

Also Newsday notes that anti-government protests continue in Haiti - not really news, though.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 14:59 Comments || Top||

#9  When you consider all the natural resources in South America, it's disheartening to see their total lack of advancement in the fields of individual rights to property, and even in many instances, to life itself. One of the primary reasons for that lack of advancement is the frequent and often fruitless revolutions, counter-revolutions, and just plain old wars. Until the average Jose gets enough of an education to know that the only way he can get ahead is to have stable government that recognizes the rights of the individual, and that socialism kills all incentive to improve, it will go on, slowly grinding down the majority in poverty, disease, and filth. Unfortunately, I see large areas in Europe heading in the same direction. The revolutions there are bloodless (so far), but just as real, and just as destructive.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 22:25 Comments || Top||

Middle East
Followup: Fatal Gaza blast hits US convoy
A United States diplomatic convoy has been hit by a massive bomb blast in the Gaza Strip which killed three Americans and injured one. The BBC’s Roger Hearing in Jerusalem says that American sources in Israel say that the dead were two security guards and one junior diplomat. A witness told the BBC that the explosion was caused by a roadside bomb, possibly detonated by remote control. The explosion took place at 1000 near the village of Beit Hanoun, about one kilometre inside the Gaza Strip, near the Erez Crossing, as the convoy of US diplomatic vehicles was passing. US diplomats and members of the Central Intelligence Agency are believed to have been in the convoy, but our correspondent said it is not clear whether this convoy was deliberately targeted.
Fox News said they were a security detail...
Mohammed Radwan, a Palestinian taxi driver, said he was at a nearby petrol station when the bomb went off. "I was about to fill up my car with gas when I saw the American convoy passing. There was a Palestinian police car in front and then three big (US) cars. When the third one passed, an explosion went off," he told the Associated Press. "The first two cars drove quickly and stopped far from the explosion. Palestinian security people jumped out of the car and rushed to the car that had blown up. "When I tried to approach them, they shouted at me to leave. I saw two people covered with blood lying next to the car," he added. Another witness, Ahmed Samir, told the Reuters news agency: "We were inside our storage room, and heard the siren of police cars approaching. A few seconds later there was a huge explosion and shrapnel from body parts and debris from damaged M-16s (assault rifles) were scattered everywhere." The force of the explosion completely destroyed the silver Cherokee jeep, which bore US diplomatic number plates, and left a large crater in the ground.
They knew who was in the cars, and they targeted them deliberately. That's why Saeb's so scared. On Fox, he promised that the Paleos would work with our investigators or they could have the run of the place to track down the bad guys.
The BBC’s Simon Wilson, also in Jerusalem, says that when foreign officials travel in and around the region they do so in heavily armoured vehicles, with many security officials in tow. It is the first time a US target has been hit inside the Palestinian territories, although correspondents say it is not unusual for foreign diplomats based in Israel to travel into Gaza to try to monitor the situation there.
They were on their way to interview applicants for scholarships in the U.S.
The new Palestinian Prime Minister, Ahmed Qurei, has been swiftly to condemn the attack [sic] and promise that the incident will be thoroughly investigated. "We strongly condemn this incident and we will conduct an investigation and we will follow it to find the source of this attack," he said. Palestinian Cabinet minister Saeb Erekat was quoted as saying: "These are American monitors that have come here at our request. These people were here to help us."
"My foot really hurts bad where we shot it. How about yours?"
Correspondents say Palestinian police are at the scene of the blast to begin an investigation. Initial reports suggested that John Wolf, head of a US team monitoring the implementation of the US-backed peace plan known as the road map was travelling in the group. However, US officials have said that Mr Wolf is not currently in the region.
Maybe the perps just thought he was. The radio said Hamas and IJ have both denied involvement...
Posted by: Bulldog || 10/15/2003 7:09:05 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6472 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Forgot to add: update to Murat's post.
Posted by: Bulldog || 10/15/2003 7:14 Comments || Top||

#2  translations:"We strongly condemn this incident...To bad,shame on them.

we will conduct an investigation and we will follow it to find the source of this attack,"...have to find out who did it to congratulate them,

"These are American monitors that have come here at our request.These people were here to help us."...Stupid gulliable Merkins(Gottcha agin,Charlie Brown).
Posted by: Raptor || 10/15/2003 8:10 Comments || Top||

#3  So.....anyone still have any illusions about the value of that roadmap?
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 8:58 Comments || Top||

#4  A sane policy would be to give the PA five days to brings us the heads of everyone in the responsible group -- involved or not, if they supported the group, we want their heads -- or risk a declaration of war against the PA itself.

Of course, the PA's not about to crack down on itself, and we lack the spine to actually deal with the PA once and for all, so the PA will get away with this.

Oh, and I bet the Syrians are the ones that asked for the attack. The press is trying to spin it as the result of our veto in the UNSC, but it takes more than a few hours to set one of these attacks up. This has been planned for a while.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 9:34 Comments || Top||

#5  Hmmm let's see who has a track record of killing US Diplomats......winner is YASSER!
Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 10:16 Comments || Top||

#6  Wire report via drudge:
U.S. citizens were ordered to leave the Gaza Strip following a deadly attack on a convoy of U.S. diplomats Wednesday, diplomatic sources said. Three Americans, apparently security guards for diplomats, were killed in the attack near the Palestinian town of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip. Several hours after the bombing, U.S. investigators were attacked by Palestinian stone throwers and sped away as their cars were pelted by rocks. Diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity, said U.S. citizens were asked to leave the volatile strip, but details of the order were not immediately available.
Posted by: seafarious || 10/15/2003 11:29 Comments || Top||

#7  Whack Rantissi. Now.

Go ahead, bright boys, poke the tiger with that stick again...
Posted by: mojo || 10/15/2003 11:45 Comments || Top||

#8  The gloves should come off right now. Fold up the road map, and lets get down to business. We've patsied around with Paleos for too long. Time to inject some real pain into the equation.
Posted by: Rex Mundi || 10/15/2003 12:17 Comments || Top||

#9  Update from Boston.com - Paleos worry about US Retribution EFL:

JABALYA, Gaza Strip (Reuters) - Palestinians said they feared retribution from the United States after three American security guards were killed in a bomb attack on a U.S. embassy convoy in the Gaza Strip Wednesday. The blast occurred on the edge of the large Jabalya refugee camp near Gaza City, a stronghold for Palestinian militants involved in a three-year-old uprising against Israel for statehood that began after U.S.-brokered peace talks collapsed.

"We wonder what (U.S. President George W.) Bush will do now," lamented Ahmed, a worried resident of Jabalya. "I guess he is mad at us."

The convoy targeted by a roadside bomb was heading to Gaza City where a cultural attache was due to interview Palestinian students hoping to receive scholarships for post-graduate studies in the United States, Palestinian officials said.

"They were coming to do interviews in order to evaluate candidates. I condemn the act completely and I believe all Palestinians are against it and reject it," said Reyad al-Agha, head of Gaza City's al-Azhar University.

"I do not know who was behind this but it certainly aimed ... to undermine and worsen the relationship between Palestinians and Americans," he told Reuters.

Militant groups denied responsibility for the bombing -- a rare attack on foreigners in the uprising -- and it was condemned by Palestinian officials including President Yasser Arafat, who said he had ordered an investigation.

A cord used to detonate the bomb stretched more than 330 feet away from the wreckage of the U.S. Chevrolet jeep toward a factory zone at the edge of the refugee camp.

"It (the bombing) could have happened by mistake. Maybe the target was Israeli tanks who frequently raid our areas. But we fear the U.S. will react through Israel's army," said Mohammed Mesleh, a municipal worker among onlookers at the bombing scene.

"The attack could have taken place because the United States has gone so far in its bias and support for Israel. America is not silent any more regarding Israeli policies against us, but a supporter of these policies," he said.

Palestinians often accuse the United States of taking Israel's side in the intractable Middle East conflict.

Posted by: Frank G || 10/15/2003 12:55 Comments || Top||

#10  "We wonder what (U.S. President George W.) Bush will do now,... I guess he is mad at us."

Yeah, me too.
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 13:14 Comments || Top||

#11  Things you can depend on in life, just when one is feeling disgust with the Israelis some Palestinians do something to take your breath away.

This time last year I didn't really think that ethnic cleansing was a possibility in Gaza and the West Bank. My opinion is changing real fast.
Posted by: Hiryu || 10/15/2003 13:38 Comments || Top||

#12  "We wonder what (U.S. President George W.) Bush will do now," lamented Ahmed, a worried resident of Jabalya. "I guess he is mad at us."

He damned well better be.
Posted by: Steve White || 10/15/2003 13:59 Comments || Top||

#13  "America is not silent any more regarding Israeli policies against us, but a supporter of these policies," he said...

Think the repeated killings of Israeli civilians has anything to do with this? Naaah, couldn't be that...
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 14:38 Comments || Top||

#14  we fear the U.S. will react through Israel's army

You should really be afraid that the U.S. will react through the U.S. Air Force. "Mr. Rantisi, this is my good friend Mr. J. Dam; Mr. J. Dam, this is Mr. Rantisi. You guys should have a blast together!"
Posted by: Mike || 10/15/2003 15:00 Comments || Top||

#15  sadly, the US will probably react thru the State dept so the Palestians will have to endure several lectures from (rhymes with bowel), (a carefully nuanced but severely critical statement by (rhymes with voucher) and others.
Posted by: mhw || 10/15/2003 15:39 Comments || Top||

#16  "We wonder what (U.S. President George W.) Bush will do now," lamented Ahmed, a worried resident of Jabalya. "I guess he is mad at us."

Well at least ONE count 'em ONE Paleo finally understands cause and effect.

The PA should have 24 hours to clean out the filth that infests their country in terms of the leaders. If they do not, then the US and the IDF should make a joint operation and do the work for them and take them out.

The leaders of these terrorist outfits should be put on notice that they have NOWHERE to hide. Civilians better avoid them like the plage. End of story.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 16:10 Comments || Top||

#17  I wouldn't hit the Palestinians. I would whack the Syrians - I believe that Assad threatened a reprisal for the air raid the other day. They knew we would veto their resolution.

I believe that we are at war again. Let's waste them.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 16:22 Comments || Top||

#18  I wouldn't hit the Palestinians. I would whack the Syrians..

Hit 'em both. One for making threats, and one for carrying them out. One cruise missile each into Arafart's and Assad's front doors.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 17:57 Comments || Top||

#19  Level where ever Bashar is. Level Arafish's cave. Level every Saudi palace in existence. Level the Egyptian government buildings. They're all involved in this, directly or indirectly. It's time they all started to receive the "negative reinforcement" due them.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 21:01 Comments || Top||

#20  Let's see....

The candidates (summing up various posts and blogs) are:

1) Mossad
2) Arafat's Asswipes
3) Hamas
4) IJ
5) Syria
6) Small time wannabe Paleos
7) Egypt/Soddy (as plan hatchers rather than button pushers)
8) 2-7 above

Coulda been any of 2-8. Tho' the synchronicity of yesterday's veto in the UN and this little escalation is interesting. Sort of implies that the perps can get very accurate info about US/Israeli activity in very short order. They knew when, what, where and who. I think there is a leak/mole in the Israeli and/or US operation.

So given the veto, best guess is some Paleo group(s) with or without Syrian sympathy. Which one - we'll probably never know. The "suspects" arrested by the PA are no doubt annoyances to Arafat (AKA "Pustule on the Ass of Humanity").

Given that we don't know who pushed the button, it seems reasonable to me that we address ourselves to all those who share the mindset. That way we can be sure of getting the perp, if only in the over-kill.
Posted by: Mercutio || 10/15/2003 22:03 Comments || Top||

#21  Merc -- why a leak in US or Israeli operations? Last I heard, the convoy had PA "police" "escorts". Given the "police" involvement in past terror attacks, I'd look at them as the source of the "leak", if you call active collaborators leakers.
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 10/15/2003 23:28 Comments || Top||

East Asia
China puts man into space
China has launched its first manned space flight and has become only the third country to put a man into orbit. Lift-off from the Gobi desert was at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, the start of a mission that it is hoped will rocket China into the exclusive space club pioneered by the former Soviet Union and United States four decades ago. A Long March 2F rocket called the Shenzhou V — "divine ship" in Chinese — carried a single "taikonaut" named Yang Liwei, 38, following a trail blazed by Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin and American Alan Shepard in 1961. "The Shenzhou mission, if successful, will make China the third nation to send a man into outer space, following the former Soviet Union and the United States," the official Xinhua news agency said in a brief dispatch. State television said later that the spacecraft had entered Earth orbit.
Sounds like they?re using really basic hardware: the one illustration of Shenzhou I've seen looked close to the old Russian Soyuz.

Still, you?ve gotta respect, and envy, anyone who takes the ride. Get home safe, Liwei.
Posted by: Mike || 10/15/2003 6:42:10 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The Chineese craft has the same basic 3 module construction as the Russian Soyuz... but I understand that it is scaled up... some 8 (?) feet wider.

Did any see the launch? The smoke looked like hydrazine.
Posted by: Shipman || 10/15/2003 7:36 Comments || Top||

#2  I'm just glad the bleeding hearts can start replacing the USA with China in the following sentiments:
"I'm so disgusted at how China can spend all this money on a space program when there are so many people right here on Earth that need help! What is the point?"
Posted by: Dar || 10/15/2003 9:06 Comments || Top||

#3  I'm just glad the bleeding hearts can start replacing the USA with China in the following sentiments: "I'm so disgusted at how China can spend all this money on a space program when there are so many people right here on Earth that need help! What is the point?"

Actually, China still ranks as one of the poorest countries in the world - average monthly income in the booming coastal cities is around $60 a month. (The salaries in the depressed interior cities are even lower). China can't really afford this jaunt - the reasons for this exercise are (1) the propaganda value for China's rulers and (2) the potential military applications. With respect to point #2, note that this mission is not only spearheaded by the Chinese military; Chinese leaders have boasted of the potential military applications. And I recognize their point about its relevance to Chinese military power - China is, after all, reaching for the ultimate high ground.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 10/15/2003 9:36 Comments || Top||

#4  They got him up there. I hope they have the capability to bring him back safely. The Chinese are known for taking short-cuts.

We really need to get our space program back into high gear, before we find ourselves in deep kimchee, with Chinese and Russians in space, and ready to deny it to anyone else. I don't trust others to be as nonbeligerant as we are. I EXPECT them to try to translate their space achievements into demands for compromise on our part - especially, from the Chinese, over Taiwan.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 10/15/2003 10:24 Comments || Top||

#5  Old Patriot,

The manned space program is a huge waste of money. If we can't do it profitably through private industry after all the decades of gov't spending then it's time to cut the gov't spending. Private industry now knows it's possible and has a base to work from... if they can make it cheap enough for tourism then good if not then that's that.
Posted by: Damn_Proud_American || 10/15/2003 10:51 Comments || Top||

#6  I don't begrudge them -- and I agree with Dar. Our own space program was something beautiful and heroic, in and of its own self. It's been killed by the carpers and ankle biters without the imagination to see that the universe can be ours. Keep deferring to the humorless pinheads and we'll still be earthbound, while China and eventually Malawi and Samoa are walking on the moon and going to Mars. And we'll still have our people who can't provide for themselves.
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 10:52 Comments || Top||

#7  When you have clear policy and stated goals set, and close-knit and top-notch teams working on space projects, you get excellence. To get a taste of teamwork and excellence, read The Grumman Story, by Richard Thruelson. The part about building of the LEM (lunar module)illustrates the point about teamwork. This country cannot expect mediocrity if it expects to survive. The first thing we need is a change in expectations. We have the resources, the smarts, the people. We need the will to excel.
Posted by: Alaska Paul || 10/15/2003 11:08 Comments || Top||

#8  Great! When we set up the colony on the Moon, they can deliver...
Posted by: tu3031 || 10/15/2003 11:17 Comments || Top||

#9  tu301 - *sputter* *snort* Coffee alert!!
Posted by: eLarson || 10/15/2003 11:44 Comments || Top||

#10  TU, wasn't the moon, at one time, part of the Crater Chinese Empire? - couldn't help it. I think I was channeling Carrot Top.
Posted by: Super Hose || 10/15/2003 14:33 Comments || Top||

#11  Damn - Chinese in space. Next thing you know they'll have colour TV.
Posted by: Yosemite Sam || 10/15/2003 19:44 Comments || Top||

Middle East
Four Dead in Gaza Blast Hitting U.S. Vehicles -Radio
An apparent roadside bomb exploded next to a convoy of U.S. diplomatic and CIA vehicles in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday and Israel Radio said at least four people were killed. Witnesses at the scene said a silver Cherokee jeep used by American diplomats was completely destroyed by the blast, which left a gaping hole from what appeared to be a roadside bomb. A Palestinian policeman at the scene said he had seen at least two bodies ripped apart but Israel Radio said there were four dead in all.
Posted by: Murat || 10/15/2003 4:55:26 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Erekat was just on the teevee, saying not to jump to conclusions -- it could have been the Israelis. He looked scared.
Posted by: Fred || 10/15/2003 8:46 Comments || Top||

#2  Erekat was just on the teevee, saying not to jump to conclusions -- it could have been the Israelis.


Sure Saeb, and Hamas is going to disband tomorrow...
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 8:55 Comments || Top||

#3  Erekat has long pushed the idea of having international observers in PA territory. The UN had the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH - which both the Israelis and the Palestinians called 'two idiots patroling Hebron'). Erekat's idea looks like it has been blown up along with the silver Cherokee.
Posted by: mhw || 10/15/2003 8:55 Comments || Top||

#4  Crap,Feds ain't goin do squat.
I can see the State Dept suck Yassers hind tit already.
Posted by: Raptor || 10/15/2003 11:26 Comments || Top||

#5  wire report via drudge:
U.S. citizens were ordered to leave the Gaza Strip following a deadly attack on a convoy of U.S. diplomats Wednesday, diplomatic sources said. Three Americans, apparently security guards for diplomats, were killed in the attack near the Palestinian town of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip. Several hours after the bombing, U.S. investigators were attacked by Palestinian stone throwers and sped away as their cars were pelted by rocks. Diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity, said U.S. citizens were asked to leave the volatile strip, but details of the order were not immediately available.
Posted by: seafarious || 10/15/2003 11:30 Comments || Top||

#6  Ere-catty is trying to save Sharkey Arafish's doomed ass and continue the PA's genocidal aims.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 12:29 Comments || Top||

#7  The embassy staff were on their way to interview potential palestinian recipients of the fulbright scolarship.

We must hit back. This cannot go unanswered
Posted by: frank martin || 10/15/2003 18:19 Comments || Top||

#8  Savages.
Daisy Cutters, lots of Daisy Cutters.
Posted by: Yosemite Sam || 10/15/2003 19:42 Comments || Top||

U.S. Vetoes U.N. Condemnation of Israel
The United States on Tuesday vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution that would have condemned Israel for building a barrier that cuts into the West Bank.
Surprise meter reads ’0.00000’.
The American veto came after the United States suggested an alternate draft that would have called on all parties in the Middle East work to dismantle terrorist groups. But Syria, which had introduced the draft, went ahead with the vote anyway. The United States was the only country to vote against, using its veto as one of five permanent members of the council. Four of the 15 members of the Security Council abstained: Bulgaria, Cameroon, Germany and Britain. The Palestinian U.N. observer, Nasser Al-Kidwa, lamented the American decision and said there can be no peace process so long as Israel is building the barrier. ``You cannot have this construction of the expansionist wall and simply pretend that the road map exists,’’ Al-Kidwa said. ``It’s either or.’’
Brilliant! You’re absolutely right: the roadmap is dead. Now if you’d only understand cause-and-effect we could get somewhere.
U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte said the resolution ``was unbalanced’’ and ``did not further the goals of peace and security in the region.’’ The vote came after a fierce daylong open debate that saw several of about 40 countries that spoke portray the wall as racist and colonialist, and an overreaction that would turn some parts of the Palestinian territories into ``open-air prisons.’’
As opposed to Ein-al-Hellhole.
Syria’s U.N. Ambassador Fayssal Mekdad, whose country is the only Arab nation on the 15-member council, introduced the draft resolution Thursday on behalf of the 22-member Arab League. Al-Kidwa said the Palestinians would seek an emergency session of the General Assembly to introduce a similar resolution. General Assembly resolutions - unlike those of the council — aren’t legally binding but carry symbolic weight.
That in a nutshell describes the Paleostinians.
Posted by: Steve White || 10/15/2003 2:41:20 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6458 views] Top|| File under:

#1  General Assembly resolutions - unlike those of the council — aren’t legally binding but carry symbolic weight.

Ooooh, "symbolic weight"....yeah, that'll intimidate someone.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 14:45 Comments || Top||

Home Front
Nethercutt hails Iraq’s recovery
Rep. George Nethercutt said yesterday that Iraq’s reconstruction is going better than is portrayed by the news media, citing his recent four-day trip to the country. "The story of what we’ve done in the postwar period is remarkable," Nethercutt, R-Wash., told an audience of 65 at a noon meeting at the University of Washington’s Daniel J. Evans School of Public Affairs.

"It is a better and more important story than losing a couple of soldiers every day." He added that he did not want any more soldiers to be killed.

Nethercutt is a member of the House Appropriations Committee that approved President Bush’s $87 billion request for military and reconstruction expenses in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Dan Senor, an adviser to U.S. administrator for Iraq L. Paul Bremer, also spoke to the UW audience -- by phone. A traffic accident kept him from catching a plane in Washington, D.C.

Nethercutt and Senor highlighted the return of electricity to Iraq, which now has a higher megawatt output than it did before the war. Reconstruction has targeted schools and hospitals, and the Americans are spending 3,500 percent more on health care than Saddam Hussein did, Senor said. He said the Iraq effort needs the financial support Bush has asked for from Congress. "It gives us the tools to finish the job here," Senor said.

Nethercutt said the faster infrastructure rebuilding is completed, the faster the country can take care of itself and the United States can leave. "So in five years or less, we’re out of there," ...
Except for the air and army bases we’ll have there courtesy of the treaty we’ll sign with the new Iraqi government that is elected.
... said Nethercutt, who plans to challenge Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., for her seat. "I’m as fiscally conservative as anyone can be ... but I think it is a smart investment for this country to make."

He said he has no doubt that weapons of mass destruction are in Iraq, have been in Iraq or that there was a program there to produce them. Many potential weapons sites are awaiting inspection from Americans, he said. "That’s not an excuse, just a reason. It’s not surprising that we haven’t found huge supplies of weapons," Nethercutt said, adding that what inspectors are looking for could fit in a space the size of a two-car garage.
Actually it is a surprise, but one that we’ll eventually explain.
During a question-and-answer session, some in the audience questioned the need for the United States to deal with the United Nations.
I take it that this was not the Al Franken fan club in the audience.
"I’ve had my moments where I felt the United Nations was counterproductive to its charter," Nethercutt said.

Aida Kouyoumjian, who grew up and attended school in Baghdad, told Nethercutt she was glad the United States did not rely totally on the U.N. for approval. Another audience member, Dan Goldhaber, a professor in the public affairs school at the UW, asked Nethercutt for clear criteria for when the United States should get involved in other countries. Nethercutt said Saddam Hussein provided a good model for threats the nation should confront with its pre-emptive policy. Terrorism attacks that can kill large numbers of people have made pre-emptive action necessary, he said. "We can’t counterpunch anymore," Nethercutt said.
Obviously he gets it.
Posted by: Steve White || 10/15/2003 2:25:03 AM || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I like this guy! He is going to get my vote this election. Anything to get rid of Socialist Patty Murray.

BTW: Why isn't Patty saying anything about how we are buildind schools and hospitals in Iraq? She sure did not hesitate to say stuff about Bin Laden building schools (i.e. training camps).

From NewsMax :

Sen. Murray Praises bin Laden's Good Deeds

Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., is under fire today for praising terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, leader of the 9/11 attacks that killed thousands of Americans.

"We’ve got to ask, why is this man [bin Laden] so popular around the world?" Murray said to pupils Wednesday at a government high school in Vancouver, Wash. "Why are people so supportive of him in many countries ... that are riddled with poverty?

"He’s been out in these countries for decades, building schools, building roads, building infrastructure, building day care facilities, building health care facilities, and the people are extremely grateful. We haven't done that.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/15/2003 9:08 Comments || Top||

#2  He forgot the part about bin Laden sending his Jihadist friends to raping parties in Sudan
Posted by: JFM || 10/15/2003 10:04 Comments || Top||

#3  Terrorism attacks that can kill large numbers of people have made pre-emptive action necessary, he said. "We can’t counterpunch anymore," Nethercutt said.

On the contrary, we can counterpunch. The real question is, how many lives are we willing to sacrifice? As far as I'm concerned, the answer to that is ZERO.

"He’s been out in these countries for decades, building schools, building roads, building infrastructure, building day care facilities, building health care facilities, and the people are extremely grateful. We haven't done that."

Yep, bin Laden is Murray's wet dream - a walking, talking social program.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 10/15/2003 11:04 Comments || Top||

#4  Actually, crazy fool, Patty Murray opposes further spending in Iraq, as I detail here.

In short, They Hate Us because we don't placate them with foreign aid, but when it comes time to put her money where her mouth is, suddenly it's more important to spend money at home. I'm guessing it has something to do with Bush.
Posted by: Angie Schultz || 10/15/2003 11:27 Comments || Top||

#5  CrazyFool - Don't forget the Day Care Centers! Apparently we did't build enough day care centers for all the working moms on The Arab Street for Patty's liking.
Posted by: eLarson || 10/15/2003 11:48 Comments || Top||

#6  Angie,

I never said Patty wanted to spend money in Iraq (clearly she does not - she only wants to waste spend it at home on social programs.)

The only thing which implies that she does is her own words. I am only pointing out her double standard.

And Concerning OBL spending money on day cares, roads, and health care facilities. Patty was talking out of her ass again. (as stated in the the article I pointed to above) OBL only supported some 'charities' who support extreame fundimentalist (sp?) Islamic schools (read: Terrorist and Taliban Training Camps).
Posted by: CrazyFool || 10/15/2003 11:55 Comments || Top||

#7  This guy makes sense.
Posted by: Atrus || 10/15/2003 13:11 Comments || Top||

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