March 26, 2007

Web Reconnaissance for 03/26/2007

A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention.

In the News: (Registration may be required to read some stories)
Britons to be tried, Tehran says “The Iranian government will charge 15 captured British service members with ‘illegal entrance into Iranian waters,’ Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said yesterday, raising the stakes in his country's confrontation with an outraged British government.” (READ MORE)

GSA Chief Is Accused of Playing Politics “Witnesses have told congressional investigators that the chief of the General Services Administration and a deputy in Karl Rove's political affairs office at the White House joined in a videoconference earlier this year with top GSA political appointees, who discussed ways to help Republican candidates....” (READ MORE)

Iran Partly Suspends Nuclear Pledges “The Iranian government announced Sunday that it was partially suspending cooperation with the U.N. nuclear watchdog agency, citing the ‘illegal’ sanctions the Security Council imposed on the country Saturday for its refusal to stop enriching uranium.” (READ MORE)

U.S. Envoy Says He Met With Iraq Rebels “The departing senior envoy in Iraq held talks with men he believed represented major insurgent groups in a drive to bring militant Sunni Arabs into politics.” (READ MORE)

Sunni Baghdad Becomes Land of Silent Ruins “Far more than in Shiite areas, sectarian hatred has shredded what remained of community life and created a cycle of violence in Sunni neighborhoods of Baghdad.” (READ MORE)

From the Front:
Mohammed: The real front in the war on terror “‘When The Taliban regime in Afghanistan fell young men waited in lines to get a haircut and when Saddam fell barbers became targets.’ My father offered this simple example during a discussion we had about war on terror the other day. Although the example is very simple but the idea behind it is deep and aims at identifying the change of the main battleground for war with terror.” (READ MORE)

Acute Politics: FRAGO “A FRAGO is a fragmentary order- a change of mission to reflect a change of circumstances. We cleared up a tough road to bring a resupply convoy up to a series of isolated Observation Posts. We've done the mission multiple times before, and this time, things were going according to plan. We cleared the first part of the route in record time. As we turned on to one of the side roads that would eventually bring us to the first OP, the side of the road was lined with children waving and asking for candy.” (READ MORE)

IraqPundit: Sadr in Splinters? “How is Moktada's excellent Iranian adventure going? ‘Al Sadr has been in Iran since early February,’ wrote the AP on March 21, ‘apparently laying low during the U.S.-Iraqi offensive, according to the U.S. military.’ Yet poor Moktada's been homesick. ‘Al Sadr tried to return to Iraq last month,’ says the wire story, ‘but turned back before he reached the Iraqi border upon learning of U.S. checkpoints on the road to Najaf, the Shiite holy city south of Baghdad where he lives.’” (READ MORE)

Outside the Wire: Combat Artist “One of my fellow embeds is of a dying breed--the Combat Artist. Where digital video and cameras are the mode of the day, he works with ink and water colors on paper. Steve Mumford covered Iraq in 2003 and 2004.” (READ MORE)

Duke in Iraq: The blue foot “A couple of days ago, I was walking into the hospital just as a helicopter was arriving with an injured soldier. When they take the injured off the helicopter they place them on a rolling stretcher. The man was being rolled through Hero’s Highway as he passed by me. He was wrapped in a Mylar blanket which helps keep the injured warm. There was a splint around his lower leg which was wrapped in an ace bandage and just his toes and top part of his foot was visible.” (READ MORE)

On the Web:
Robert D. Novak: Bush Alone “Republicans in Congress do not trust their president to protect them. That alone is sufficient reason to withhold statements of support for Gonzales, when such a gesture could be quickly followed by his resignation under pressure.” (READ MORE)

Suzanne Fields: Moral Equivalence Revived “‘Western civ,’ in fact, became a sneer. Ronald Reagan, who recognized an evil empire when he saw one, ended all that. He knew that men and women trapped behind the Iron Curtain wanted freedom just like us.” (READ MORE)

Donald Lambro: Hillary's dialing all the wrong numbers “Buried within a recent presidential-preference poll that asked voters who they would never vote for, an unexpectedly large number gave an emphatic thumbs-down to Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.” (READ MORE)

Michael Barone: Gore's Faith Is Bad Science “Al Gore likes to present himself as a tribune of science, warning the world of imminent danger. But he is more like an Old Testament prophet, calling on us to bewail our wrongful conduct and to go and sin no more.” (READ MORE)

WSJ Opinion Journal: Tehran's Hostages “Advocates of engagement with Tehran often claim that the Islamic Republic long ago shed its revolutionary pretensions in favor of becoming a "status quo" power. They might want to share that soothing wisdom with the families of the 15 British sailors and marines kidnapped Friday in Iraqi territorial waters by the naval forces of the elite, and aptly named, Iranian Revolutionary Guards.” (READ MORE)

Jules Crittenden: Carter’s Legacy “Jimmy Carter is proud of the mistakes he made in the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis. He brags to this day of how he talked tough to the mullahs, conveying the message quietly that if any of the hostages were harmed, he would blockade Iran’s ports. He froze the Iranian government’s assets in the United States and began what were essentially ransom negotiations with kidnappers.” (READ MORE)

Crazy Politico: Obama Called Out “I've posted a number of times about the Democrat's plans for 'Universal Health Care', and specifically about Barack Obama touting it as a major campaign theme, though it's not on his web site anywhere. Yesterday in Las Vegas an audience member at a candidates forum as Obama what his plan was, since it's no where to be found on his website. The answer is he doesn't have one yet, the campaign is young; but it's really important to him, and he'll have universal care in place by the end of his first term.” (READ MORE)

Bryan Preston High Honor: Texans turn out to receive a hero “Sgt Emerson Noah Brand, of Caddo Mills, TX, (population: 1,149) lost his life in Iraq on March 15 when an IED detonated near his vehicle in Baghdad. On March 23, residents of Caddo Mills and nearby towns turned out to welcome him home. The Patriot Guard Riders provided escort. A friend of mine was there, and had this to say about the moment.” (READ MORE)

Dean Barnett: Gonzo's Got To Go “One thing that’s been overlooked in the U.S. Attorneys scandal is just how political by nature such appointments are. A quick example: In November 2001, at the behest of an aged South Carolina Senator, George W. Bush appointed 28 year-old Strom Thurmond Jr. to be the U.S. Attorney for South Carolina.” (READ MORE)

DJ Drummond: Making The Grade 2007 “George W. Bush, in my opinion, has done a fine job as President, certainly top ten in terms of meeting his duties of the office and accomplishing the most important jobs. Some folks would agree with me, though to a different degree, while others would disagree with me. And some brain-dead vipers would be so consumed by their hatred of Dubya, that they would be unable to accept even the slightest of his successes. Why mention this?” (READ MORE)

Jay Tea: The rise of the Western street “For years now, the Islamists have been making inroads into Western society, finding our weak points and using them to drive us apart, to find the flaws in our cultural and social armor and prying at them, trying to carve out a place where they can begin to establish their own Islamist ‘state within a state’ that, they hope, will eventually subsume the greater secular culture.” (READ MORE)

GayPatriot: Surge Is Working As Democrats Strive Toward American Defeat “Despite their self-proclaimed “mandate”, the House Democrats barely bribed together enough votes for the “cut and run” appropriations bill last Friday. But despite the Democrat Party’s rush toward American humiliation in World War III, the surge in the Iraqi Theater is showing more and more results — while the Democrats try to starve our troops in combat.” (READ MORE)

Augean Stables: How Europe Can Lose: Pipes on Underestimating Your Enemy’s Intelligence and Your own Stupidity “Last December, Dan Pipes posted a piece entitled “How the West Could Lose.” It’s the kind of thing that the Europeans can’t even think about much less assess. For an example of how suicidal the Europeans, see Paul Beilin, ‘The Islamicization of Antwerp’ (comments in next post).” (READ MORE)

The Sundries Shack: Geneva What’s That Again? “I’ve said this before, but Belmont Club says it better than I’ve ever seen before: The Geneva Conventions are treaties. Once upon a time that meant that only citizens of those nations which ratified the Conventions could expected to be protected by them. Today, thanks to a shame I can not fathom, we’ve decided that means that we signed the Conventions to protect everyone in the world, no matter who they are nor what they do.” (READ MORE)

Right Wing Nut House: Are We Days Away From War with Iran? “It’s almost as inevitable as the daffodils blooming. Every spring for the past three years, we’ve heard reports that the US intends to bomb Iran’s nuclear sites. While this has proved to be an incorrect prediction in the past, there are some signs that within a month, the United States could initiate hostilities against Iran, thus setting off a chain reaction of events – the outcome of which would be uncertain.” (READ MORE)

ShrinkWrapped: Thoughts on Freedom “Over the weekend I finally saw ‘300’ and found it viscerally powerful and quite moving for its depiction of the sacrifice of the Spartans at Thermopylae. There is a good argument to be made that without their sacrifice, Greece would have been conquered by the Persians, ending the nascent experiment in democracy and freedom, stillborn, perhaps for all time. A powerful argument can be made that democracy and freedom are not inevitable outcomes of human striving and in fact, are very likely to be completely in opposition to the most basic aspects of human nature.” (READ MORE)

John Hinderaker: ‘Vitriol’ From Northern Virginia-Based AOL “Today's Minneapolis Star Tribune has an article on the recent Twin Cities controversies involving taxis and check-out lines. Like so many ‘news’ stories in the Strib, it's an editorial posing as reportage. It begins with an anecdote about a Muslim teenager who decides not to ‘change who [she is] for $7 an hour’ by working for Target, and presumably, scanning bacon. The theme of the article is that the recent incidents are unimportant; the implication is that those who express concern about them are bigots.” (READ MORE)

McQ: A Discussion of Anger “This week we've had any number of pundits discussing anger and it's public display. I discussed such a display over the weekend which took place in Portland during a recent anti-war/anti-American protest. I described it as puerile and destructively self-indulgent. George Will and Howard Kurtz look at two different aspects of public anger and wonder about the why. Of course, as Will points out, one reason is very obvious:” (READ MORE)

Dr. Rusty Shakleford: Australian Taliban Trial to Open; May Plea Bargain “The Australian traitor who fought with the Taliban and al Qaeda, David Hicks, will face justice at a military commission set to reopen today at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Justice, that is, unless he cops a plea. Which it looks like he will do.” (READ MORE)

Bill Roggio: Rutbah - Fact vs Fiction “Report of ambush, casualties on U.S. forces in the western town of Anbar false - News from the distant western towns of Anbar province is few and far between as reporters do not often travel to the far reaches of Iraq. The town of Rutbah is particularly distant from the center of gravity of Baghdad. Rutbah is a smuggler's town and a transit point in the Syrian desert in the southwestern corner of Iraq, which is nearly equidistant from Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.” (READ MORE)

Flopping Aces: A Scandal Without Any Scandalous Behavior “So say's Fred Barnes when interviewed by Laura Ingraham on Friday and I would completely agree. Did Gonzales handle this story well in the beginning? No. But to throw another body in front of the Democrat train is NOT the answer. I will be the first to admit that Gonzales doesn't appear to be the best Attorney General but to bow to Democratic pressure over a non-scandal is not the answer.” (READ MORE)

Dan Riehl: Was Military Recruiter Set Up? “Research into a story of a military recruiter under fire for allegedly insulting a gay male through email suggests the gay man in question may have a history of creating confrontations with establishment authority figures. While nothing excuses an inappropriate use of email by a military recruiter, some context appears to be lacking in this story.” (READ MORE)

Captain Ed: Constitutional Relativity “A grad-school thesis has once again made its way into the 2008 Presidential race. Previously, a 40-year-old treatise by Hillary Clinton lauding a radical leftist caused a few moments of consternation for her campaign, mostly because her husband's administration kept it suppressed until now. This time, Barack Obama may have to answer some questions regarding his views from law school about the elasticity of the Constitution, views which are less than two decades old:” (READ MORE)

The Munchkin Wrangler: Why the Gun is Civilization “Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that's it.” (READ MORE)

Fbl: Innocence and War “There are many reasons I'm so serious about supporting our military men and women, why I feel it's a moral obligation. It's not just a sense of ‘they have suffered for me,’ though that is certainly part of it. What really pulls on me and compels a response is the warfighter's loss of innocence due to actions taken on my behalf.” (READ MORE)

Have an interesting post or know of a "must read?" Then send a trackback here and let us all know about it. Or you can send me an email with a link to the post and I'll update the Recon.

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