Thursday, April 27, 2006

Any conclusions you want 

If you don't read Phil Carter, you should. He's a former MP officer who came off active duty, went to law school (where, as I recall, he studied under Mark Kleiman), started a great blog called Intel Dump, and because he was still a Reserve Officer, eventually got called up to go to Iraq.

That's where Phil is now. He doesn't get to blog as much as he used to, and he has to be more careful what he writes.

He recently posted a review of George Packer's The Assassins' Gate. One part captures the various understandings of the Iraq War so well, I felt compelled to share it here:
Contradictory Evidence. There is enough evidence on the ground in Iraq to support any conclusion you want to arrive at, save for the absolutes. It is not absolutely certain that we will win or lose here — only that the outcome will be something greater than defeat, something less than total victory. Packer arrives at this observation near the end of the book, and I think it's absolutely brilliant. When members of Congress and the press come to Iraq for "touch and go" visits, I imagine they find whatever evidence they want to support the opinions they had when they landed here. Likewise, the reporters and soldiers like me who live here for months on end are able to piece together just about any conclusion we want, depending on the day and our morale, because there is plenty of evidence out there for us to pick from. It's extremely hard in Iraq to arrive at any definitive, objective, balanced version of "the grouth truth." The truth in Iraq always remains just out of focus, beyond the ability of our eyes and minds to resolve into clarity.
Except, of course, for the truth that American troops are there, at tremendous cost of blood and treasure, with no obvious end in sight.


The Family Values Party 

TPM Muckraker has a sweet (or maybe that should be "suite") little piece on how Jack Abramoff associate Mithell Wade would procure prostitues for convicted former congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham.

According to the WSJ,
. . . investigators are focusing on whether any other members of Congress, or their staffs, may also have used the same free services, though it isn't clear whether investigators have turned up anything to implicate others.
Can't hardly wait for the other stocking to drop on this one.

UPDATE Thursday night: You just know that there are hard working folks at the CIA (not to mention those who have fled the agency in the past year) who are digging this:
Ken Silverstein reports at Harper's blog on the spreading Cunningham-Wade-Wilkes prostitute scandal. He says more lawmakers, past and present, are being investigated. Sounds like he thinks House Intel Chair-turned-CIA Director Porter Goss is one of them
Let's plan a party!



Speculation that Rover may be indicted on Friday. Says his three and a half hour grand jury questioning was "Hell."

More at Raw Story.

Couldn't happen to a nicer Turd Blossom.


Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Army Surplus Flash Drives 

Well, not exactly surplus. But there seems to be a booming business in flash memory on the streets of Bagram, Afghanistan.

This is not good:
Just days after U.S. troops were ordered to plug a security breach at their base here, the black market trade in computer memory drives containing military documents was thriving again Monday.

Documents on flash drives for sale at a bazaar across from the American military base over the weekend contained U.S. officers' names and cellphone numbers and instructions on using pain to control prisoners who put up resistance. A study guide on one of the drives describes tactics for interrogating and controlling detainees by pinching or striking nerve and pressure points on their face, neck, arms and legs.
Three years after Donald Rumsfeld single-handedly eliminated the Taliban, there still seem to be more than a few dead-enders with weapons. With access to this kind of information, they become even more deadly to Americans serving there.


The People's Republic of USAF 

Apparently China isn't the only entity hell-bent on controlling people's access to information.

According to Amber Jane at Daily Kos, the US Air Farce Force is blocking internet access to Kos, Atrios and Talking Points Memo, but the freepers and the little green fascists come through loud and clear.

I was kinda wondering why no zoomies stop by Rain Storm anymore.

Thanks to Josh for the link.


Monday, April 24, 2006

Boots on the Ground 

Ed notices another military genius who thinks regime change can be accomplished by a massive air strike.

Just a reminder (and mostly from memory - not an exact quote):
You can bomb it from the air and run tanks across the plains, but you will only own the ground when the Infantryman places his boots on the ground and takes it.
You pay for foreign real estate with blood and treasure. Too many slow learners have never been presented with the tab.


Save the Internets 

I agree 100 percent with Duncan, Digby, and the other high volume bloggers.

Read about it here. Contact your Congress Critters (if you're in Shadegg's district, call him up 202-225-3361).

Don't let Congress just cave in to the big telcos. Stir it up NOW!

I thank you. The blogosphere thanks you.


If Republicans didn't do illegal shit, 

Democrats wouldn't stir up crap.

It starts with a few College Republican ratfucking pranks. They think that's really cool, so they make a life style choice and work on a campaign or two. They start drinking the kool-aid. And at some point, they cross over the invisible line and can no longer help themselves. They've become career criminals.

Stir it up!


Sunday, April 23, 2006

Just one House 

Josh Marshall points out what Democratic control of just one house of Congress would mean:

Subpoena Power.

And as E. J. Dionne notes, that's what the White House fears most. Suddenly everything could be investigated.

Work hard from now unitl the November election. It could be fun watching everybody in BushCo land pissing their pants at the same moment.


Still Free 

Here's the video of the tagging of Air Farce One.

Here's the back story. Hat tip to AMERICAblog.


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