This obscenity from the BBC, further exposing the creeping disease of the press gone insane.
In a new series, the Power of Nightmares explores how the idea that we are threatened by a hidden and organised terrorist network is an illusion.
Wherever one looks for this al-Qaeda organisation, from the mountains of Afghanistan to the "sleeper cells" in America, the British and Americans are chasing a phantom enemy. But the reason that no-one questions the illusion is because this nightmare enemy gives so many groups new power and influence in a cynical age - and not just politicians.
Correction: This is not insanity, incompetence or being misinformed; this is evil.
To misquote Pogo; "We have met the enemy, and he is on the tube"
So, while my brain, and apparently my server, thaw out, here is some superior reading for the day. This will also minimize heat-generating movement as we are looking at 108º - 109º today. Personally, I think it's going to wimp out at 105º.
The invaluable Arthur Chrenkoff has some "Good News" about a young British Muslim prizefighter and this, less sanguine report.
"On Saturday, during a funeral for children who died in the bombing on Wednesday, a unit of the Iraqi police stopped a suspicious-looking man approaching the funeral procession and discovered that he was wearing a suicide vest filled with explosives and ball bearings, the American command reported Sunday.
An explosives team disarmed the man, a Libyan, and no one was hurt, according to the American military.
"The bomber was high on drugs and is being treated for the potential overdose," said Col. Joseph DiSalvo, an American commander. The bomber, he said, "came here to kill the grieving parents of the children who were killed on Wednesday."
"I cannot imagine a worse crime.""
SondraK references a superb article by Victor Davis Hanson on Our Wars Over the War: "The fault is not in our stars" Also at NRO Online, but if it isn't my server preventing access, it's theirs, at the moment.
That Avatar of Elegance and Intelligence, Sisu, waits for her iMac G5 and muses on a London - Columbine meme re. youth culture, plus a lovely photo of "The Boys". (The Lavender Hill Mob?) "Effete exudations", indeed. Many good links here, especially to Betsy's Page on just how much Pakistan President Musharraf is, or isn't, doing about the pernicious madrassas spreading jihadism in that country.
Follow her link to Stuart Taylor Jr. at The National Journal on "5 Reasons Not to Choose Alberto Gonzales.
The Belmont Club highlights Think Globally, Act Locally, re. the war on terror's many facets.
Although the fight against terrorism has been called the Global War on Terror, in practice it is being fought locally, often over specific issues, in a variety of countries. Reuters reports on Thailand:
The first four paragraphs, on general economic themes, are omitted. All emphases mine.
As we work to deliver opportunity at home, we're also keeping you safe from threats from abroad. We went to war because we were attacked, and we are at war today because there are still people out there who want to harm our country and hurt our citizens. Some may disagree with my decision to remove Saddam Hussein from power, but all of us can agree that the world's terrorists have now made Iraq a central front in the war on terror. These foreign terrorists violently oppose the rise of a free and democratic Iraq, because they know that when we replace despair and hatred with liberty and hope, they lose their recruiting grounds for terror.
Our troops are fighting these terrorists in Iraq so you will not have to face them here at home. We mourn every one of these brave men and women who have given his or her life for our liberty. The terrorists know they cannot defeat our troops, so they seek to weaken our nation's resolve. They know there is no room for them in a free and democratic Middle East, so the terrorists and insurgents are trying to get us to retreat. Their goal is to get us to leave before Iraqis have had a chance to show the region what a government that is elected and truly accountable to its citizens can do for its people.
Time and again, the Iraqi people have defied the skeptics who claim they are not up to the job of building a free society. Nearly a year ago, Iraqis showed they were ready to resume sovereignty. A few months ago, Iraqis showed they could hold free elections. This week, Iraqis have worked on an agreement to expand their constitutional drafting committee to ensure that all communities are represented in the process. I am confident that Iraqis will continue to defy the skeptics as they build a new Iraq that represents the diversity of their nation and assumes greater responsibility for their own security. And when they do, our troops can come home with the honor they have earned.
This mission isn't easy, and it will not be accomplished overnight. We're fighting a ruthless enemy that relishes the killing of innocent men, women, and children. By making their stand in Iraq, the terrorists have made Iraq a vital test for the future security of our country and the free world. We will settle for nothing less than victory.
I'll continue to act to keep our people safe from harm and our future bright. Together we will do what Americans have always done: build a better and more peaceful world for our children and grandchildren.
Thank you for listening.
Thank you, Mr. President. And remember, wear Red on Fridays.
From Rooters, Sat Jun 18, 2005 4:44 PM ET. By Peter Graff.
In Baghdad, General William Webster, the U.S. commander for the capital, and Brigadier General Jaleel Khalaf, commander of the first Iraqi army brigade given charge of its own section of the city, said hundreds of raids on suspects over the past month in a sweep known as Operation Lightning had succeeded in halving the number of car bombings in the capital.
Some 1,200 suspects had been detained, they told a news conference. About 50 of those arrested were foreigners.
"It's like hunting birds," said Colonel Steve Davis of the U.S. Marines as he surveyed the ruins of what he said was an insurgent base in Karabila. "You shoot a few, the rest fly away. You shoot a few again, the rest fly away again."
General Khalaf, whose brigade U.S. officers say is a model for the Iraqi army they hope can relieve them, criticized U.S. politicians calling for a timetable for a troop withdrawal.
U.S. firepower would be needed for some time to come, said Khalaf, once a general in Saddam's army. "Those who want a date have no understanding of military issues," he added.
The joint U.S.-Iraqi Operation Spear continued Saturday as Marines, sailors and Iraqi security forces fought insurgents in Karabila, near the Syrian border. The most intense fighting was concentrated in the center of town, where enemy fighters were holed up in a bunker complex.
ARRAF: What I see in front of me is absolutely heartbreaking. It's two of four hostages who are being taken away, rescued. They were rescued this morning. They're Iraqi, and they were found in this complex that Marines first thought was a car-bomb factory. In fact, they did find what they believe was a potential car bomb or suicide car bomb.
But inside this complex, they found something even more sinister -- four Iraqis who were handcuffed, their hands and feet bound with steel cuffs. They're now being taken away for medical treatment, one being borne away on a stretcher.
The man in intense pain that they're trying to get into a vehicle, has been tortured, he says, and has all the marks of being tortured with electricity. His back is crisscrossed with welts. The other man is even ... in worse shape. Their crime was to be part of the border police.
The Marines came in here this morning, rescued them. The battle is still raging around us. I don't know if you can hear the gunfire, but this is a major offensive to get rid of insurgents and foreign fighters in this city near the Syrian border....
... Two young men say they don't know why they were seized. They say they didn't hear the voices of their captors, only people whispering in their ear that they were going to be killed.
But we have just watched the two who were most badly treated be carried out of here for medical equipment, one of them on a stretcher, an older man who worked for the border police, along with his colleague. ... the Marines showed us the room where he says he was hung by his feet, his head dipped in water and then tortured with electric shocks repeatedly.
One of the other men, the other border police, was too weak, really, to tell us what had happened. But he obviously was in very, very bad shape.
They were rescued this morning as Marines and Iraqi forces came into this complex, which included an underground bunker, weapons stockpiles and other things, and found them here. Their captors have fled.
The G8 meeting in London has brought to mind a man little thought of today but to me, an American icon. I believe "Silent Cal" had some eloquent words for this occasion-and these times.
"Coolidge was the last President of the United States who did not attempt to intervene in free markets , letting business cycles run their course. During his Presidency, the United States experienced a wildly successful period of economic growth ... Coolidge not only lowered taxes, but also reduced the national debt."
"There is an obligation to forgive but it does not extend to the unrepentant. To give them aid and comfort is to support their evil doing and to become what is known in law as an accessory after the fact. A government which does that is a reproach to civilization and will soon have on its hands the blood of its citizens."
"There are among us a great mass of people who have been reared for generations under a government of tyranny and oppression. It is ingrained in their blood that there is no other form of government. They are disposed and inclined to think our institutions partake of the same nature as these they have left behind. We know they are wrong. They must be shown they are wrong."
"Wealth is the product of industry, ambition, character and untiring effort. In all experience, the accumulation of wealth means the multiplication of schools, the increase of knowledge, the dissemination of intelligence, the encouragement of science, the broadening of outlook, the expansion of liberty, the widening of culture."