April 27, 2007

Web Reconnaissance for 04/27/2007

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

In the News: (Registration may be required to read some stories)
Senate Sends War Timetable To Bush's Desk - The Senate approved a $124 billion Iraq war spending bill yesterday that would force troop withdrawals to begin as early as July 1, inviting President Bush's veto even as party leaders and the White House launch talks to resolve their differences. (READ MORE)

Candidates Unite in Criticizing Bush - Democratic presidential candidates largely set aside their differences here Thursday and presented a united front of opposition to President Bush and his Iraq policy, urging the president not to veto newly passed legislation that sets a timetable for beginning the withdrawal of U.S. forces from the conflict. (READ MORE)

Army Officer Accuses Generals of 'Intellectual and Moral Failures' - An active-duty Army officer is publishing a blistering attack on U.S. generals, saying they have botched the war in Iraq and misled Congress about the situation there. (READ MORE)

U.S. Wants to Limit Guantanamo Detainees' Access to Lawyers - The Bush administration is urging a federal appeals court to clamp down on Guantanamo Bay prisoners' ability to see their attorneys and obtain government records to help argue their innocence. (READ MORE)

Russia to Suspend Compliance With Key European Pact - President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that he was suspending Russia's obligations under the Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty, ratcheting up a tense standoff with the NATO alliance over U.S. plans to build a missile defense system in Eastern Europe. (READ MORE)

Senate OKs deadline in war funding - The Democrat-led Senate yesterday gave final approval to an emergency war-funding bill that sets troop withdrawal deadlines for Iraq, a measure that neither congressional chamber passed with enough votes to override President Bush's promised veto. (READ MORE)

With 18 months to go, 8 Democrats begin debate - Democrats hoping to become the next U.S. president made their most visible pitch yet to voters last night, with the war in Iraq dominating their first debate, the earliest election-season forum in modern history. (READ MORE)

'They know they are getting out' - Flight medics, pilots and crew chiefs know the chances of saving a wounded soldier are best if he receives medical attention within a crucial "golden hour" -- or maybe 90 minutes -- after being injured. (READ MORE)

Durbin kept silent on prewar knowledge - The Senate's No. 2 Democrat says he knew that the American public was being misled into the Iraq war but remained silent because he was sworn to secrecy as a member of the intelligence committee. (READ MORE)

Border chief defended on 'no confidence' - U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner W. Ralph Basham says a "no-confidence" vote against Border Patrol Chief David V. Aguilar by leaders of the agency's rank and file is "derisive, detrimental and blatantly unfair." (READ MORE)

From the Front:
Desert Flier: Day Flight “Flew my first day mission a few days ago. Iraqi Police came in with a gunshot wound to his abdomen. After three hours in the OR, we had to remove his spleen and part of his pancreas. There was shrapnel lodged near his vertebra, but we were able to safely remove it without causing any neurological compromise. He ended up losing a lot of blood before and during the case, and we couldn't wait until nightfall to fly him to Al Asad.” (READ MORE)

JD Johannes: Replicating Success "As the Marines of Weapons platoon fanned out under a starlit night to begin the census, they did not grumble about a census being a BS Op. They have seen how effective census data can be. The Previous Deployment - The 3rd Battalion of the 6th Marine Regiment was at the tip of the spear in some key operations in Western Al Anbar and were part of Operation Steel Curtain." (READ MORE)

Omar: Why Are the Democrats Doing This?"Instead of trying to come up with ideas to help they try to halt the sincere effort to stabilize Iraq and rescue the Middle East from a catastrophe.I am Iraqi and to me the possible consequences of this vote are terrifying. Just as we began to see signs of progress in my country the democrats come and say ‘well, it’s not worth it, so it’s time to leave’." (READ MORE)

On the Web:
WSJ: Review & Outlook: Africans for Wolfowitz “One of the most revealing subplots in the European coup attempt against World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz is who is coming to the American's defense. The rich European donor countries want him to resign, while the Africans who are the bank's major clients are encouraging him to stay.” (READ MORE)

Peggy Noonan: We're Scaring Our Children to Death “This week saw a small and telling controversy involving a mural on the walls of Roosevelt High School in Los Angeles. The mural is big--400 feet long, 18 feet high at its peak--and eye-catching, as would be anything that ‘presents a colorful depiction of the rape, slaughter and enslavement of North America's indigenous people by genocidal Europeans.’ Those are the words of the Los Angeles Times's Bob Sipchen, who noted ‘the churning stream of skulls in the wake of Columbus's Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria.’” (READ MORE)

Kimberly A. Strassel: Tort Tribute “Most Republicans viewed Barney Frank's recent hearing on subprime mortgages as nothing more than typical Democratic corporation-bashing--and nobody is happier about that than Barney Frank. The House Financial Services chief is surely grinning that so few picked up on his bigger purpose: bestowing a big, wet smooch on the trial bar.” (READ MORE)

A Soldier's Mind: Yet Still, Boots On The Ground “Soldier On” “Today General David Petraeus had some very important information to share with members of Congress. Apparently, many of them felt that what he had to say, wasn’t important enough for them to hear. Among those noticeably absent was the Speaker of the House. Petraeus didn’t try to sugarcoat his message, but instead provided an honest assessment of progress in Iraq. As he was speaking, the Senate was busy passing legislation to start bringing our troops home, before their mission in Iraq is complete. Legislation that the President has promised to veto. I find it extremely telling, that they’re willing to make judgements, based on their political agendas, instead of taking the time to listen to what General Petraeus had to say.” (READ MORE)

The Belmont Club: The Taliban Leave a Calling Card “The Taliban spring offensive is here. The AP reports: ‘The Taliban conducted a raid in Afghanistan's volatile south and took control of a provincial district, killing five people including the district chief and the head of the district police, the deputy governor said Friday. According to the NATO/ISAF site, Ghazni contains a PRT team and is in the American sector of responsibility. Ghazni is also in the newest of the ISAF "expansion areas" and may have been one of the most vulnerable.’” (READ MORE)

Dafydd: Go, Joe! “I've been reading the speech that Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT, 75%D) gave on the Senate floor, passionately arguing against the surrender bill that the fatuous Democratic majority in Senate and House have just passed (Power Line has the complete transcript). And I came across this passage that quite literally made my mouth fall open. It's so obvious once Lieberman points it out... but I must confess, I never realized it until I read Lieberman saying it. You will be as stunned as I, I predict (all emphasis added):” (READ MORE)

Crazy Politico: ERA Won't Fix Any Of These Problems “So, I'm reading the Op/Ed pages lately, and there has been a growing clamoring, now that Democrats control Congress, to get the Equal Rights Amendment back on the front burner. This weeks report that women start making less money than men straight out of college is the latest report to get feminists up in arms, and declare that an Amendment to the Constitution is the only solution. In today's Washington Post Martha Burke and Eleanor Smeal argue that ‘gender gaps’ in education, health care, and political positions will somehow magically disappear with the passage of the ERA. Salaries will somehow become comparable, differences in health insurance rates will go way, suddenly political participation will be based on population distribution.” (READ MORE)

Dadmanly: One Signature Away “Senator Barack Obama says that we are ‘one signature away from ending this war,’ making the remarkable statement in the first debate of democrats for the 2008 Presidential Election. Not to be outdone in the visualize peace exercise, Senator Hillary Clinton repeated her promise, that ‘if George Bush doesn't end the war, as President, I will.’ A central assumption of both of these naive positions is that the US fights ‘George Bush's war’ in isolation. If we weren't there, nobody in Iraq would be blowing people up. If we weren't there, Iraqis would work out there differences. If we weren't there, terrorists would stop being terrorists, or at least, go on to unidentified other targets elsewhere in the world, but in places that we just don't need to worry about either.” (READ MORE)

Don Surber: What they meant to say at the Dem debate “The first Democratic presidential debate was a huge success because few Americans actually saw the 8 candidates who showed up. The Democrats cleverly chose the least-watched cable TV news station — MSNBC, which hoped to use the debate to double its audience so that it could finally draw half of Shep Smith’s audience.” (READ MORE)

Bill Roggio: Al Qaeda in Iraq's Diyala Campaign “As Iraqi and Coalition forces build their forces to strike al Qaeda in their base in Diyala, the terror group is hitting hard at existing combat outposts in the violence-racked province. Over the past several days, al Qaeda in Iraq has conducted several suicide strikes at U.S. and Iraqi combat outposts, police stations and Army checkpoints throughout the province. The latest attack occurred today in the city of Khalis. A suicide bomber rammed his car into an Iraqi Army checkpoint. Ten Iraqi Soldiers were killed in the strike.” (READ MORE)

Jules Crittenden: March of the Morons “We live in a time of great moronitude. Morons, everywhere, rising from their morasses, massing and moving forward. In their multitudes, the morons march inexorably to the moronocy. The road is not easy. Some will fall by the way. Others, struggling moronically, will rise to blithering new heights of moronality.” (READ MORE)

Amy Proctor: GEN Petraeus Praises Iraqi Resilience “Bottom Line Up Front: GEN David Petraeus spoke the most freely at his briefing with the press this morning after most of the news networks returned to regular coverage. GEN Petraeus, Multi-National Force-Iraq commander, gave a statement and took questions this morning from the press corps in DC. Of course, the headlines that came out of that briefing were: ‘Things may get worse before they get better’, and ‘The operational environment in Iraq is the most complex and challenging I have ever seen’. Those are certainly true, but not the whole story.” (READ MORE)

Kat in MO: Information War: The Media as a Weapon “Michelle Malkin points to an article about the media in assymetrical warfare. There were a number of very significant points in this paper that did not lambast the media so much as chide it for pretending that it is objective and does not take part in the war. In many respects, it points out that the very nature of competitive media forces it to abandon it's journalistic integrity for sensationalism. It did abandon these ethics and routinely published historonic stories and faked images as a true representation of the war. And, once the images and stories were out, repairing the damage was practically impossible.” (READ MORE)

Kim Zigfeld: Cold War, Part II “It's very difficult to explain how anyone could ever have thought that Russia would simply ‘give up’ its hostility towards the West and its values and institutions just because it ‘lost’ the Cold War, and could therefore ‘never go back’ to Soviet values. Where did this insane idea come from? Is it just frenzied Western arrogance? If the West had lost the Cold War, would we have simply repudiated democracy and adopted a communist dictatorship?” (READ MORE)

Allahpundit: Saudis bust seven terror cells, arrest 172 “I’ve read the AP, BBC, and Reuters reports on this story and nowhere does it say the cells were linked, so this may have been a sort of ‘Five Families’ operation to hit a bunch of different people simultaneously while their guard was down. Come to think of it, none of them specify when the arrests were made, either. It could be that they’ve been busting people continuously over the past six months and only chose to go public today. 172 people, though. That’s a lotta jihad. From Reuters:” (READ MORE)

Dan Riehl: Bill O’Reilly, Defeatist? “Iraq won't become a Somalia. It will be far worse. It will either become an Iranian client state, or the center of a regional Sunni Shi'ite civil war. And for those who think watching rival Muslim factions murder one another is just fine with them, think again. The world economic implications of such a conflict will make Carter's gas lines look like a Gas and Go Express. Many of the world's economies will buckle under the strain of ever soaring energy costs.” (READ MORE)

ROFASix: Why Iraq? “What I would like someone to address is whether what we do in Iraq is worth it? I don't mean the $6.3 billion a month we spend there as much as the other costs. Does a pro or anti-US Iraq really affects US security? When you look at the region, the Saudis, Israelis and Pakistanis are our 'friends' because we are a major trading partner or we freely transfer to them our wealth to prop up their governments. The rest of the region are openly hostile, or at best ambivalent toward the US. We have proven for years that foreign aid does not buy friends, yet we continue to do it under a number of different guises.” (READ MORE)

John Hawkins: 10 Differences between Conservatives And Liberals “Conservatives and liberals approach almost every issue with completely different philosophies, underlying assumptions, and methods. That's why it's so hard to find genuine compromise between conservatism and liberalism -- because not only are liberals almost always wrong, their solutions almost always make things worse. With that in mind, let me take a few moments to explain some of the key differences between liberals and conservative to you.” (READ MORE)

Victor Davis Hanson: Is The War on Terror Over? “Do we still need to fight a war on terror? The answer seems to be no for an increasing number in the West who are weary over Afghanistan and Iraq or complacent from the absence of a major attack on the scale of 9/11. The British Foreign Office has scrapped the phrase ‘war on terror’ as inexact, inflammatory and counterproductive. U.S. Central Command has just dropped the term ‘long war’ to describe the fight against radical Islam.” (READ MORE)

Oliver North: Americans Now Love Losers? I'm Not Buying It. “If Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is right, nearly 60 percent of Americans agree with him that the war in Iraq is already lost. And if he is correct in saying that losing the war will increase Democrat majorities in future elections, then it may be fair to conclude that Americans now love losers. I'm not buying any of it -- and neither are the troops who are fighting this war.” (READ MORE)

David Limbaugh: There Are “Lies,” and Then There Are Lies “As someone who has criticized the Bush Administration for not fighting back enough against relentless Democrat attacks and disinformation, I was delighted by Vice President Cheney's overdue dress-down of the Peter-principled and unprincipled Senate majority leader, Harry Reid.” (READ MORE)

Patrick J. Buchanan: The Squalid Politics of War “Majority Leader Harry Reid is being lacerated, and justifiably so, for a pair of statements about the war in Iraq. The more widely quoted is the ‘war is lost’ remark of April 19, which, read in context, amounts to a charge of rankest cynicism against President Bush and his War Cabinet.” (READ MORE)

Rich Lowry: Lost on Iraq “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had a bright, shining moment of honesty when he said that the war in Iraq is lost. He unburdened himself of what he and many of his colleagues have long believed about the war. Now if only Democrats saw fit to continue with their truth-telling. Then they would acknowledge that their mandate for a U.S. withdrawal beginning in October is a policy predicated on our defeat, and that they don't think anything can or should be done about Iran and al-Qaida feasting on a prostrate Iraq and the country possibly descending into genocidal bloodletting.” (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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