July 10, 2007

Web Reconnaissance for 07/10/2007

A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day...so check back often.

In the News: (Registration may be required to read some stories)
Bush Plans To Stress Next Phase In Iraq War - President Bush, facing a growing Republican revolt against his Iraq policy, has rejected calls to change course but will launch a campaign emphasizing his intent to draw down U.S. forces next year and move toward a more limited mission if security conditions improve, senior officials said yesterday. (READ MORE)

Army's Recruiting Goal Lags For Second Month in a Row - The U.S. Army fell short of its active-duty recruiting goal for June by about 15 percent, defense officials said yesterday. It is the second consecutive month the service's enlistment effort has faltered amid the American public's growing discontent over the war in Iraq. (READ MORE)

Gonzales Was Told of FBI Violations - As he sought to renew the USA Patriot Act two years ago, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales assured lawmakers that the FBI had not abused its potent new terrorism-fighting powers. "There has not been one verified case of civil liberties abuse," Gonzales told senators on April 27, 2005. (READ MORE)

Scores Killed As Pakistani Commandos Storm Mosque - ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, July 10 -- Pakistani commandos stormed the Red Mosque at dawn Tuesday after last-minute negotiations broke down and President Pervez Musharraf gave the go-ahead for an operation aimed at ending the eight-day siege. At least 43 people were killed and the death toll was expected... (READ MORE)

Iraqi Foreign Minister Says Quick Pullout Could Lead to Civil War - Iraq's foreign minister warned today that a quick American military withdrawal from the country could lead to civil war and the collapse of the government, as pressure on the Bush administration for a pullout grows. (READ MORE)

Bush Limits Access to Ex-Aides - President Bush yesterday said he has instructed two former administration officials not to testify this week before Congress, on the grounds that to comply with a committee's subpoena would weaken the executive privilege powers of the office. (READ MORE)

Iraq Fails to Meet all Reform Goals, Report Will Say - A progress report on Iraq will conclude that the U.S.-backed government in Baghdad has not met any of its targets for political, economic and other reform, speeding up the Bush administration's reckoning on what to do next, a U.S. official said yesterday. (READ MORE)

Death Knell for 'N-Word' - The "n-word" is dead according to the NAACP, which staged a mock funeral for the racial slur during its annual convention in Detroit yesterday, complete with a horse-drawn caisson, black roses and a plywood casket. (READ MORE)

From the Front:
Michael Yon: Second Chances “When distinguished visitors come to almost-where the action is, it can be disruptive to the point of wasteful. I’ve heard commanders grumble all over Iraq about the steady streams of VIPs who, while intending to be seen observing operations, instead seize the mechanics with their clumsy footprint. These are called ‘dog and pony shows.’ But on D+18, when a most important ‘visitor’ came to Baqubah, not only did he not seem to cause a hiccup, but everyone I talked with was happy to see him. General Petraeus came to Baqubah on 7 July 2007, amid practically zero fuss.” (READ MORE)

Michael J. Totten: On My Way to Kuwait “I'm leaving for Kuwait now, and should be in Iraq by the end of the week. Co-blogger Noah Pollak is coming out of hiding and will help keep fresh content on the site while I'm in travel limbo and out in the field gathering new material. Be nice in the comments and keep an eye on America for me while I'm away.” (READ MORE)

Matt Sanchez: Marines Mentor "Spray and Pray" Iraqi Troops “Habbaniya - All Marines are riflemen, but can Marines master all rifles? With security as the key for bringing stability to a war-wary Iraq, Marines are tapped to train a novice national army with a shaky reputation. It's a clear, hot day beneath the Al Anbar sun, 50 miles northwest of Baghdad. Habbaniya is a former British airbase ceded from the Ottoman Empire after the First World War. Next to the long runways that required more space to take off are the remains of an upscale ex-pat community.” (READ MORE)

Jack Army: First Journal Entry “I've been working on a journal off and on since deploying to the theater. I thought you'd like to see what I recorded nearly a year ago: ‘060806 [6 Aug 2006] -0750 [hours] Camp Buehring, Kuwait - I left Schofield Barracks on Thursday and by the time we got to Camp Buehring, it was late on Saturday. We went from Schofield to Hickham AFB by bus. The USO was there and gave the guys a slice of pizza and some juice. There was a lady taking our pizza tickets who was very animated and excited.’” (READ MORE)

Iraq Pundit: It's easy to be an expert “As usual, there's no shortage of Iraq ‘experts’ pontificating from afar. And, as usual, there's the challenge of sorting those who have no idea what they're talking about from those who at least have a clue. That's why it's refreshing to find a piece by someone who considers the Iraqis themselves for a change.” (READ MORE)

Omar: Summer logistics, and more on summer politics “The weather in Baghdad is painfully hot. And the constant struggle with daily life logistics is depleting by energy reserves. I tried so many times to hold a pen or touch the keyboard but I couldn't finish even one coherent paragraph although there's no lack of ideas or events…it's frustrating but, I'm trying to force myself to accept it because there are still two more months to go before the annual visit of hell to Baghdad ends.” (READ MORE)

Badger 6: The Clean Streets of Falluja “I vividly remember hitting the streets of Iraq, not a fob, the streets of Ar Ramadi for the very first time. We dismounted to help sweep a suspected cache last October. One of the things that struck me was the smell and the horrendous amounts of garbage laying all over the place. My inference was that due to the lack of municipal services garbage removal had simply fallen to the point where no one could even think about taking responsibility for it.” (READ MORE)

Acute Politics: Surprise! “I got back to Ramadi on the 28th of June, and spent two days doing a whole lot of nothing while waiting for my platoon to come back from Falluja. I planned to spend day three turning in extra unused gear at noon, and then doing more nothing. I woke up to the phone ringing. The other soldier in the building, left behind on guard duty, answered the call:” (READ MORE)

The Gunners World: Al Asad "I wonder will I ever get back to some kind of normal schedule, I glance at my watch it is 2:55am. I have just landed in Al Asad, I step out the back of the CH-46 and the early morning air hovering around 90 feels good and refreshing, I open my flack jacket to let the air hit me and cool down some.With little thought given I move numbly grabbing my pack and following the line of Marines in front of me, we move like a single trail of ants in the darkness to be manifested as ‘Arriving'. " (READ MORE)

On the Web:
Iraq War Today: When War Hits Close to Home... “Brookfield, CT is a not-so-small, not-so-big town near Danbury, in Fairfield county. When I grew up there, Hoffman's chicken farm was the biggest building on my end of Route 7, and it took you about ten minutes to get from the house I grew up in to the only movie theater in town - right next to John's Best Pizza. Hoffman's chicken farm is long gone, replaced with self storage centers and industrial buildings. The farm where I first took horseback riding lessons is now the site of the town hall. The field we used to walk through in my neighborhood to get to the local fishing and swimming pond now is filled with a new housing development.” (READ MORE)

Bill Murchison: Congressional Snake Pit “And so, according to polls, talk shows, blogs, water-cooler exchanges and scholarly examination of New Mexican bat entrails, the American people want Congress to reform health care.” (READ MORE)

Cal Thomas: Hillary on Her Faith “The quality and depth of one's relationship with God should be personal and beyond the judgment of others, unless one is running for president and chooses to talk about it as part of a campaign plan to win the election.” (READ MORE)

Phyllis Schlafly: The Voters Roared and the Senate Listened “Contrary to continuing media propaganda, the 2006 election and the killing of the Senate ‘comprehensive’ immigration bill do NOT prove that anti-amnesty is a loser for Republicans. The Democrats who won in 2006 campaigned with Republican-rhetoric messages calling for border security, and they kept their promises in the decisive cloture vote on June 28.” (READ MORE)

Dinesh D'Souza: Run, Cindy Sheehan, Run! “The far-left in America and Europe has an underlying craziness for which I am deeply thankful.” (READ MORE)

Rich Lowry: Abandoning the Fight Against al-Qaida in Iraq “‘America good! Al-Qaida bad!’ -- A trader in the Qatana bazaar, Ramadi, Iraq In a microcosm, this is the reason why we are finally making progress against al-Qaida in Iraq. The protection afforded by American combat power has made it possible for Iraqis in Sunni areas to turn against the terror group.” (READ MORE)

John McCaslin: Clinton's Temper “‘Congratulations on speaking for the Republican National Committee.’ Or so an angry former President Bill Clinton spouted after being questioned why the Clinton administration failed to stop Osama bin Laden before he reared his ugly head on September 11.” (READ MORE)

Bill Steigerwald: Immigration: From a Wall Street Journal Perspective “For most conservatives and Republicans, The Wall Street Journal long has been a trusted source of political and economic enlightenment. When it comes to immigration policy, however, many conservatives disagree fiercely with The Journal, which strongly supported the immigration reform bill that was killed in the Senate last month.” (READ MORE)

Alexander M. Haig, Jr.: Our Own Worst Enemy “Let us not delude ourselves. The recent Hamas conquest of Gaza is a signal defeat for the United States that goes well beyond the particulars of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We have sought to deny the Islamic terrorists a territorial base in Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and elsewhere. Now they have won one on the Mediterranean.” (READ MORE)

Bret Stephens: Public Diplomacy for Dummies “Late last month, President Bush gave an address at the Islamic Center in Washington, D.C., where he announced that the United States would for the first time appoint an observer to the Organization of the Islamic Conference. ‘Our special envoy will listen to and learn from representatives from Muslim states and will share with them America's views and values,’ he said. ‘This is an opportunity for Americans to demonstrate to Muslim communities our interest in respectful dialogue and continued friendship.’” (READ MORE)

WSJ Review & Outlook: Truth in Global Warming “This week's prize for honest liberalism goes to Michigan's John Dingell, who is having fun with his fellow Democrats while also making a useful point about the politics of global warming. The venerable Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee--first elected in 1955--has announced that he plans to introduce as early as this week a new tax on carbon emissions.” (READ MORE)

The Tygrrr Express: Democrats want to party like it’s 1968–Bring on Operation Ineptitude “The democrats remind me of Jeffrey Dahmer without the politeness. Never has a political party eaten its own with such ruthlessness. The most recent version of the political tribute to Hannibal Lecter comes in the long since past sympathetic figure known as Cindy Sheehan. Rather than rehash old commentary, I will sum her up in one line. Ms. Sheehan, I honor and respect your late son, and have no respect for you since you lack honor.” (READ MORE)

Vox Veterana: What's wrong with right? “With the resurgence of talk lately of a planned date of withdrawal from Iraq there is nothing I can do but shake my head at the stupidity of many of our politicians. Apparently the democrats, and those few weak-kneed republicans who have turned on the president’s plan for Iraq lately, have very short memories. It was only 30 some years ago, (when all of them were alive by the way) that we made an early exit from Vietnam and watched as the massacre that we knew would come ensued.” (READ MORE)

Andi: Walking a Mile in Our Shoes “Sending a spouse, parent or child off to a war-zone is not an easy thing to do, not at all. Mary-Jo Cooney will soon find this out. Her only child, a Marine, will deploy in a few days. There is no one-size-fits-all for how to cope with deployment. A few months ago I wrote that when my husband leaves, I can't wait to get the laundry done and put away. It is my way of quickly adapting to my new temporary life. The one that doesn't include having my husband at home. Another military wife takes an entirely different approach, which perfectly illustrates how differently each of us handle events.” (READ MORE)

Jay Tea: "Wait And See" “In my career in blogging, I've learned a lot of useful rules and guidelines and principles that have kept me from making a lot of mistakes. Not that I haven't made my share of them, but there would have been a hell of a lot more had I not followed these ideas as well as I have. The first is something that I thought I garnered from Little Green Footballs, but now can't seem to verify that. It's something called the ‘48 Hour Rule.’” (READ MORE)

Lorie Byrd: Airman Shot As a Statement on Independence Day “Michelle Malkin has the story of Jonathan Schrieken, the airman from McGuire Air Force Base who was shot in his own driveway by a man who then killed himself. The shooter reportedly left two suicide notes indicating he was angry at the government and wanted to make a statement on Independence Day. Patrick Poole at The American Thinker notes the difference in treatment of those who kill members of other groups.” (READ MORE)

Jules Crittenden: Irrational Exuberance “AP and NYT’s gleeful wishful thinking may have led to overstatement. Washington Post has a somewhat more measured report on how Bush may react to GOP defections and Dem Cong exit pressure re Iraq. More in line with the White House’s actual pronouncements and past practice of damning the torpedoes:” (READ MORE)

Allahpundit: (Video) Moore sneers at Blitzer over CNN debunking of “Sicko” “Sure, Breitbart’s had it for a few hours but he doesn’t give you any of the background segment. The big A’s got five and a half minutes of pure gold for you, baby, starting with Dr. Sanjay Gupta slapping around the Iraqi “minutemen’s” favorite documentartian followed by big Mike slapping around cable news’s eternal punching bag.” (READ MORE)

Don Surber: Science is treason “Ever since 9/11, we have heard complaints from the lefties that their patriotism has been questioned. It is a subtle way of the scoundrel seeking that final refuge called patriotism. Robert Kennedy Jr. is not subtle.” (READ MORE)

Grim @ Blackfive: COIN: In Which Grim Begins to Get Irritated “We spoke last night, in the comments to Jimbo's post, about the push to end the Surge before September. I pointed to the NYT's latest atrocity, in which unnamed sources suggested that the Bush administration was debating a pullback from the Surge; this was a mirror image of their atrocity of the last week, in which unnamed sources promised that the Bush administration was debating closing Gitmo. Just like the last time, the story is plainly wrong. So, today, what do we have in the news?” (READ MORE)

Big Dog: Michael Moore is the Sicko “Michael Moore fancies himself as an expert on everything. He runs around with a camera and gets lots of footage and then he edits it and splices things in order to make things appear the way he wants. He is quite egotistical and lives in a delusional world where he believes that what he puts on film is correct. He has defended F 9/11 and said that everything in it is 100% accurate and that no one has been able to prove otherwise even though he offered $10,000 to anyone who could.” (READ MORE)

Ed Morrissey: The Honor Of Enemies “Richard Cohen writes about his discovery of a photograph from 9/11 that he had put out of his mind, but that CQ readers have probably never forgotten. The picture showed Palestinians joyfully celebrating the mass murder of 3,000 Americans in four terrorist attacks, the final one aborted by the victims themselves before the plane could reach its final destination. Cohen correctly diagnoses their hatred of America -- and then explains why we can't address it:” (READ MORE)

Jeffrey Breinholt: The History of the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.S. Courts “The most pointed and interesting discussions at the recent NEFA Conference on the Muslim Brotherhood involved the issue that is the subject of so much recent public commentary: whether Western governments should embrace the Brotherhood as an effective counterweight to Al Qaida. Meanwhile, the lawsuit filed by several Arizona-based Muslim leaders against US Airways, after passenger complaints led to their being pulled from a recent Minnesota flight, along with the libel actions filed against those who have dared to write about Islamic charities in the U.S., raises an interesting issue that was not addressed at the NEFA event nor, to my knowledge, by any legal commentatory: what is the Muslim Brotherhood’s history with the American courts?” (READ MORE)

Flopping Aces: Dooming Iraq For Votes “If spineless Republicans force a withdrawal from Iraq knowing full well what will happen if we leave too early (namely wholesale slaughter) then I can tell you with 100% certainty, the political skins they are trying to save will not survive: ‘White House officials fear that the last pillars of political support among Senate Republicans for President Bush’s Iraq strategy are collapsing around them, according to several administration officials and outsiders they are consulting.” (READ MORE)

Bill Roggio: The assault on the Red Mosque has begun “After a week of negotiations and skirmishes at the Lal Masjid, or Red Mosque, which left over 20 dead and 100 wounded, the final assault on the compound has begun. Pakistani security forces, led by the elite 111 Brigade, the Special Services Group, and the Pakistani Rangers, launched a major offensive early Tuesday morning Pakistan time on the radical Islamist mosque in the heart of Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan. Islamabad is said to be rocked with explosions. Metroblogging Pakistan provides the details of the opening moves of the assault, with rolling updates.” (READ MORE)

Fort Hard Knox: Hint: Comedy Central is Not News “I’ve got news for you about Comedy Central “news” shows like The Colbert Report and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. It is NOT news. They are COMEDY shows. A poll by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found that 21 percent of TV watchers age 18 to 29 cited “The Daily Show” as a place where they REGULARLY get their news–especially political news. Let me enlighten some of those 21 percenters–Comedy Central is NOT news. It’s a place for jokes…” (READ MORE)

Dymphna: Calling Doctor Terror “Have you been wondering how doctors could have been involved in the terrorist plots in England? As I do, you probably envision those engaged in scientific endeavors as having an outlook which closely adheres to Western ideals — i.e., both of objectivity and of a valid wall of separation between the tenets of faith and those of science. In fact, it’s hard to get your mind around another ideal, one in which religious belief trumps any other point of view and the Hippocratic Oath is subservient to the oath of submission to Allah.” (READ MORE)

Carpenter: The Demonization of Israel in the Swedish Press “From an article in DN, published on 23rd of April, 2005, I learn that 83% of the Swedes ‘disliked Israel’s behavior’ in April of 2005. One can come to the conclusion that a similar majority today still do. What is the cause? It seems to me that Sweden’s Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå (The Newspapers’ Telegram Agency) has a share of the responsibility for this. It is Sweden’s one and only news agency.” (READ MORE)

Scott Johnson: The truth about Keith Ellison “From the moment Minnesota Fifth District (Mineapolis) Rep. Keith Ellison first arrived on the scene from Detroit and started making a name for himself as a law student at the University of Minnesota, he was a mouthpiece for the Nation of Islam and its revolting ideology. Over the imprecations of his Jewish classmates, for example, Ellison helped bring raving anti-Semitic Nation of Islam speaker such Kwame Toure to the the University of Minnesota Law School itself in February 1990.” (READ MORE)

McQ: Silver linings involving al Qaeda “Bet you never thought to see a title like that, but every now and then such things occur. Al Qaeda, not sufficiently pleased to be at war with everyone in Iraq is now threatening to go to war with Iran: ‘Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, who leads the group Islamic State in Iraq , said his Sunni fighters have been preparing for four years to wage a battle against Shiite-dominated Iran. "We are giving the Persians, and especially the rulers of Iran, a two-month period to end all kinds of support for the Iraqi Shiite government and to stop direct and indirect intervention ...”’” (READ MORE)

Reformed Chicks Blabbing: Taliban continue to target girls “It's easy to battle little girls, they don't fight back. ‘With their teacher absent, 10 students were allowed to leave school early. These were the girls the gunmen saw first, 10 easy targets walking hand-in-hand through the blue metal gate and on to the winding dirt road. The staccato of machine-gun fire pelted through the stillness.’” (READ MORE)

Stop the ACLU: Tulsa is on the leading edge of the immigration “war” “Below is an extensive excerpt from an even more extensive article: ‘Tulsa is on the leading edge of local and state efforts to crack down on illegal immigration following passage by the Oklahoma Legislature of what is arguably the toughest anti-illegal immigration measure in the nation. The Tulsa City Council also embraced the get-tough approach by adopting a resolution calling on police officers to check the immigration status of “all suspected illegal aliens.” Those actions have sparked a fierce political battle, spread fear among Hispanics — both legal residents and those in the country illegally — and triggered an angry public face-off between demonstrators on either side of the great divide.’” (READ MORE)

Meryl Yourish: Syria ramps up for war “Syria is getting closer and closer to attacking both Israel and Lebanon, it appears. Michael Totten reports that Syria invaded Lebanon two days ago. The world has not reacted. Syria has also recalled its citizens from Lebanon. Lebanese sources told a Nazareth newspaper that Syria is planning to evacuate its citizens from Lebanon and close the border by mid-month, Israel Radio reported Saturday.” (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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