Monday, January 10, 2005
War News for Monday, January 10, 2005
"There are some who, uh, feel like that, you know, the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is: bring 'em on. We got the force necessary to deal with the security situation." - George W. Bush, July 2, 2003.
Bring ‘em on:
Bring ‘em on: Two US soldiers killed and four wounded in Baghdad roadside bombing that destroyed a Bradley Fighting Vehicle.
Bubble boy speaks: President Bush today rejected growing pessimism in the
He said that 14 of
Bush said in response to a question, "I think we're making great progress" in
The bubble gets lonely: Mr. Bush, asked Friday whether he shared Mr. Scowcroft's concerns about "an incipient civil war," shot back, "Quite the opposite."
But the president's optimism is in sharp contrast, some administration insiders say, to some conversations in the White House Situation Room, the Pentagon and Congress. For the first time, there are questions about whether it is politically possible to wait until the Iraqi forces are adequately trained before pressure to start bringing back American troops becomes overwhelming.
Colin’s not in the bubble, this time: US Secretary of State Colin Powell admitted yesterday the Bush administration was "worried" about the future of
Mr Powell acknowledged the elections would not put an end to the insurgency or heal rifts between Shi'ite and Sunni Iraqis, but insisted the landmark poll had to proceed.
Exciting times indeed: Attacks on election workers have become increasingly targeted and extraordinarily cold-blooded. Without even bothering to conceal their faces, terrorists allowed themselves to be filmed in broad daylight during an execution in
Can’t handle the excitement: In another significant blow to
Had enough excitement: Thameer Jabar doesn't know if he's grateful or angry for the
"We don't know who to blame,'' says Jabar, who at 34 looks a good decade older and whose father was executed by Mr. Hussein's regime in 1989 for membership in a Shiite political party. "The problem started with Saddam - he kept the country at war for my whole life. But now we're in the American era, and life has never been so dangerous. I don't want him back, but sometimes I think it was a better time."
A little too exciting for the Ukraine, too:
Results of a PR decision: In its struggle to transfer sovereignty back to
The fundamental decision set up one nationwide vote for a new national assembly, rather than elections by districts and provinces. With a violent insurgency spreading through the Sunni Arab areas of the country, it now looks as if fewer Sunnis will vote, distorting the balance of the legislature and casting doubt on whether the election will be seen as legitimate.
Postponement: The Iraqi elections scheduled for January 30 could be postponed for a few weeks to ensure they are held in a more secure environment, it was revealed last night. Interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi is reportedly conducting secret talks with the US administration in a bid to agree a joint decision, Iraqi politicians close to Mr Allawi revealed to Akhbar Al Khaleej correspondent in Baghdad Dr Hameed Abdulla.
Unlikely: Iraq's most influential Sunni group will abandon its call for a boycott of Jan. 30 elections if the United States gives a timetable for withdrawing multinational forces, a spokesman for the group said Sunday.
It is extremely unlikely the
American Moral Leadership
Life without trial: After raids in recent months that captured hundreds of insurgents in
The administration has asserted an authority to detain such prisoners indefinitely, as unlawful combatants, but officials have acknowledged that they cannot say how or when the war on terrorism might be deemed to have reached an end.
A senior American official said in an interview this week that the vast majority of the 550 prisoners now held at the American detention center at Guantánamo no longer had any intelligence value and were no longer being regularly interrogated. Still, the official said the Defense Department planned to hold hundreds of them indefinitely, without trial, out of concern that they continue to pose a threat to the
The Limbaugh defense: Mr Gonzales, who was the president's chief lawyer for the past four years, sought to distance the White House from the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison in
While he acknowledged that some US soldiers might have been confused about the
But at the hearing yesterday, he was repeatedly challenged by both Democrats and Republicans on whether he had damaged American moral authority and put US troops in danger by weakening domestic and international prohibitions against torture.
The Human Cost
Falling to pieces: A picturesque Scottish hospital is being used by the
Peter McCann, chairman of Castle Craig, said: “We have been getting [US troops] in dribs and drabs, but there have been more coming over recently. I think they are being sent to all the corners of
McCann’s comments give an insight into the terrible toll the
A major study published last year also found that up to 17% of surveyed
Opinion: The president prides himself on being a pig-headed guy. He is determined to win in
So get ready for a Mohammedan mountain of spin defining victory down. Come what may - civil war over oil, Iranian-style fatwas du jour or men on prayer rugs reciting the Koran all day on the Iraqi TV network our own geniuses created - this administration will call it a triumph.
Opinion: One of the eerie things about Bush's press conference performance was just how divorced from reality he is. Not only is he still claiming we're going to find the WMD and that Saddam Hussein was linked to 9-11, but he actually claimed we went to war to save the credibility of the United Nations. The man is living in Fantasyland.
The beginning of wisdom is to recognize that the ongoing war in
Analysis: The starting point for the American troubles was that in the process of liberating the Iraqi people,
Blog: It figured.
Eventually, an administration willing to embrace torture to fight terror was going to embrace terror as well: especially an administration populated by moral monsters like John Negroponte, who had embraced terror before, and gotten away with it.
Death squad activity is terrorism. Its purpose is never merely the assassination or kidnapping of a small number of leaders, but always the cowing of entire populations.
This case is no different. Note the language carefully:
"One military source involved in the Pentagon debate agrees that this is the crux of the problem, and he suggests that new offensive operations are needed that would create a fear of aiding the insurgency. "The Sunni population is paying no price for the support it is giving to the terrorists," he said. "From their point of view, it is cost-free. We have to change that equation.""
The target isn't a few dead-enders or foreign terrorist; the target is "the Sunni population," which needs to be taught a lesson.
Opinion: Let us do what we can for the victims of the tsunami. But no matter how much we weep for them, no matter what donations we spare, the offerings will not spare us from history's judgment, if not God's. Lugar said his heart goes out to the victims of the tsunami. No hearts have gone out to Iraqi civilians in this heartless coverup.
Powell said of the tsunami, "The power of the wave to destroy bridges, to destroy factories, to destroy homes, to destroy crops, to destroy everything in its path is amazing." He said, "I have never seen anything like it in my experience."
Yes, he has. It was in