“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Saturday, October 27, 2007

USS Cole Bombing Mastermind Jamal al-Badawi Freed.

"He was such a good boy."

Our very good friends, the Yemenis, have dismayed, dis pleasured and disappointed us by releasing the mastermind of the Cole bombing.

Yes, it is deplorable, but what are we to do? Are they kidding us? Are we that ridiculous? Of course we are.

I always marveled at Ron Goldman's father, "Fred the Fearless," and wondered why he did not take up golf, substitute a sawed off shotgun for a two iron and take OJ Simpson out starting at his ankles. No not Fred Goldman, he went after OJ's Rolex.

Seventeen U.S. sailors were killed and 39 injured and and there is a quandary as to what to do? Simple. Do the manly thing. Take his Rolex.

Justice Department 'dismayed' over release of USS Cole bombing leader

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- U.S. law enforcement officials Friday blasted Yemen's release of one of the leaders of the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole, which killed 17 U.S. soldiers.

The release of Jamal al-Badawi, a mastermind in the 2000 USS Cole bombing, has outraged U.S. officials.

"We are dismayed and deeply disappointed in the government of Yemen's decision not to imprison [Jamal al-Badawi]," said a Justice Department statement issued by the Department's National Security Division.

"We have communicated our displeasure to Yemeni officials," the statement said.

The statement pointedly referred to al-Badawi as one of the FBI's most wanted terrorists and noted prosecutors in New York City want to get their hands on him.

"He was convicted in Yemeni courts and has been indicted in the Southern District of New York," the Justice Department said. Officials said the decision is not consistent with cooperation between counterterrorism officials of the United States and Yemen.

Al-Badawi -- who had escaped prison last year -- was freed after turning himself in two weeks ago, renouncing terrorism and pledging allegiance to Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, according to news reports.

Witnesses said al-Badawi was "receiving well-wishers at his home" in Aden, Yemen, according to The Associated Press in Sana, Yemen.

Former New York City Mayor and presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani promptly called for the U.S. government to cancel $20 million in aid to Yemen for releasing al-Badawi.

The retired former commander of the Cole called the release "disappointing."

"In the war on terrorism, actions speak stronger than words, and this act by the Yemeni government is a clear demonstration that they are neither a reliable nor trustworthy partner in the war on terrorism," said Cmdr. Kirk Lippold.

U.S. law enforcement officials close to the case privately expressed outrage over the release of al-Badawi.

"He's got American blood on his hands. He confessed to what he did ... and they let him go," said one official who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak publicly.

"This will not be the last we hear of him," another federal official under the same restriction told CNN's Kelli Arena.

The Justice Department said U.S. officials will try to work with the Yemeni government "to ensure al-Badawi is held accountable for his past actions."

Suicide bombers on a boat attacked the guided missile destroyer USS Cole on October 12, 2000, in the harbor at Aden. Seventeen U.S. sailors were killed and 39 injured.

Al-Badawi, convicted in 2004 and sentenced to death, previously escaped from prison in 2003, before his trial, and was recaptured in 2004. In 2006, he escaped again with 22 others, and had been at large since then.


  1. Jamal al-Dadawi is a criminal, his case ajudicated in the country of the crime. Convicted and paroled, as per the procedures commonly followed, there.

    What's the beef?

    Hail the paper tiger!

  2. As in Turkey it is in Europe. Genocide deniers have the wheel.
    When History is inconvienent to the Politically Correct, let US deny history.
    Especially when their history insults the progeny.

    WASHINGTON (Associated Press) -- Dutch lawmakers who visited the Guantanamo Bay military prison this week said they were offended by a testy exchange in Washington with a senior congressional Democrat.

    The lawmakers said that Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif., chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told them that "Europe was not as outraged by Auschwitz as by Guantanamo Bay."

    Lantos, a Holocaust survivor, was responding to arguments that the United States should shut down the prison, located on a U.S. naval base in Cuba, the lawmakers said. Mariko Peter, a member of the Dutch Green Party, who began the exchange with Lantos, said she took notes of the remarks.

    A Lantos aide said he realizes that the Guantanamo facility does harm to the reputation of the United States and has praised judges who ruled in favor of extending legal rights to prisoners. He has not, however, suggested that the prison be closed.

    Before the Guantanamo exchange, the lawmakers had discussed a debate in the Netherlands about whether the country should maintain its 1,600 troops serving in NATO's Afghanistan operations.

    "You have to help us, because if it was not for us you would now be a province of Nazi Germany," Lantos said, according to the Dutch lawmakers.

    "The comments killed the debate," said Harry van Bommel, a member of the Socialist Party. "It was insulting and counterproductive.

  3. Dutch MPs visit Guantanamo Bay

    "Guantanamo Bay - A delegation of the Dutch Lower House is visiting the US prison at Guantanamo Bay on Cuba. The parliamentarians are there at the invitation of the US embassy. At first, they hesitated whether to accept the invitation because of the controversial status of the prison.

    After the visit, conservative VVD MP Hans van Baalen said the Netherlands should also be willing to accept prisoners who are allowed to leave the camp, but are not able to return to their own country. The majority in the Lower House however opposes the idea and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not keen on it either."

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  5. Turkey anger at Europe over PKK

    Turkey has been building up forces on its border with Iraq
    Turkey's PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan has criticised EU nations for not doing more to tackle activists from the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
    He said EU nations were not arresting or extraditing PKK members.

    Turkey has regularly asked countries to do more against the PKK, which the EU regards as a terrorist group.

    Mr Erdogan was speaking after talks between Turkey and Iraq ended without progress on Iraqi proposals to stop PKK attacks on Turkey from Iraq.

    Turkey has warned it will not tolerate more cross-border raids and has massed troops along the border.

    Mr Erdogan questioned the sincerity of EU nations on the PKK issue.

  6. Guantanamo military lawyer breaks ranks to condemn 'unconscionable' detention

    By Leonard Doyle in Washington
    Published: 27 October 2007

    "An American military lawyer and veteran of dozens of secret Guantanamo tribunals has made a devastating attack on the legal process for determining whether Guantanamo prisoners are "enemy combatants".

    The whistleblower, an army major inside the military court system which the United States has established at Guantanamo Bay, has described the detention of one prisoner, a hospital administrator from Sudan, as "unconscionable".

    His critique will be the centrepiece of a hearing on 5 December before the US Supreme Court when another attempt is made to shut the prison down. So nervous is the Bush administration of the latest attack – and another Supreme Court ruling against it – that it is preparing a whole new system of military courts to deal with those still imprisoned.

    The whistleblower's testimony is the most serious attack to date on the military panels, which were meant to give a fig- leaf of legitimacy to the interrogation and detention policies at Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay. The major has taken part in 49 status review panels."

  7. 2164th: Turkey has regularly asked countries to do more against the PKK, which the EU regards as a terrorist group.

    America is willing to help! If Turkey wants to send an entire infantry division up from Kuwait through Mesopotamia to open up a second front against the Kurds, we'll consider it!

  8. Can't we all just get along?

  9. I recall that the Turks offered 10,000 troops to the "Coalition of the Willing", their offer was turned down. The US had plenty of assets to secure Iraq, no need for those Turkish troops.

  10. The More things Change...

    Part of the problem (a big part, in my opinion) is that the tip of the spear, so to speak is small compared to it's shaft.

    I've heard various ratios thrown around, from 20 to 1, 12-1, 10 to 1. I have no idea what it is.

    I also read on a blog, that the entire U.S. Army that is activly engaged in combat operations would fit into one of our major stadiums, while the rest of the U.S. Army would make a traffic jam over one hundred miles long.

    Beats me and since unconfirmed, just talk.

    But, I have spoke to returning U.S. Soldiers and Marines and they just sum it up by saying some variance of " There are way too many REMFs and not enough of us."

    It was that way when I was in too. And there was a war going on.

    I remember going to a base camp (the only time I ever was in one) because I had a foot infection. I just couldn't believe it. It was like a base (plus other civilian bennies) had been transplanted by some magic right there in South Asia.

    While we were lucky to get one warm meal a week, and couldn't even get new boots or other items without waiting for a month or more.

    I also noticed the attitudes of those there. Spit and polish, Mickey Mouse rules and regs and a general disregard (and distain) for grunts and those who were actually fighting the war.

    It seems it hasn't changed a bit.

    There are the "NEW" recruits that the Army needs. Farm out that other crap to contractors. Hell, let contractors in on the fighting to (in limited ways, of course).

    Too bad nothing changes.

    Papa Ray

  11. "The whistleblower, an army major inside the military court system which the United States has established at Guantanamo Bay, has described the detention of one prisoner, a hospital administrator from Sudan, as "unconscionable"."
    I wonder why there are more "whistleblowers" for the enemy than for the troops? guess:
    Too many lawyer types, too much good press for good dhimmis by proxy.

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  13. I wonder if the Iraqi Army was in fact the most secular force?
    If not first, certainly second.
    All Hail the Great Decider in Chief, and his brains on loan, the Neocons!

  14. The make-up of the Iraqi Army is what ever we wanted it to be, doug.
    That is why we disbanded the Saddam Army, to build one in the image we wanted, not be limited to rebuilding an old clunker.
    The Iraqi Army is an US creation, by design.

    Ms Glick, in her Latest piece tells us that ...

    ... even if an attack against Iran's nuclear installations inside of Iran were completely successful, there is a possibility that Iran's nuclear capabilities will not be significantly downgraded. What the Syrian operation indicates is that Iran's program may be dispersed in Syria, North Korea, and in Pakistan which transferred nuclear technologies to Iran and North Korea, (as well as Libya and Egypt). In other words, there is now a distinct possibility that Iran is not the only country that will have to be attacked to prevent Iran and its allied rogue states from acquiring nuclear weapons.

  15. From a secular, integrated force, to a sect riven, death squad driven mess in one easy step!
    Like a King, waving a wand.

  16. I have no idea what Ms Glick is talking about:
    The Joos are unleashing drop tanks over Syria every other week.
    Trish told me so.

  17. The old clunker Iraqi Army could have avoided the Insurgency ever becoming ascendant.
    Not to mention the withering anarchy and looting.

  18. Some news to me, from Ms Glick, to consider the implications of ...

    Then there is Iran's neighbor Turkey to consider.

    This week Turkish Prime Minister Recip Erdogan paid a sudden visit to London. There he met with Olmert, who was also in the city that day. The meeting took place less than two weeks after Turkey's Foreign Minister Ali Babacan visited Israel. In an analysis this week in The Asia Times, M.K. Bhadrakumar, India's former ambassador to Turkey tied Turkey's pro-Hamas government's sudden interest in speaking to Israel to the tension between Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan. Bhadrakumar noted that Israel has close relations with Kurdish President Massoud Barzani. He hypothesized that the intensification of high-level discussions likely signals that a deal is being crafted which involves Turkey's position on Iran, and Iraqi Kurdistan's position on Turkey and the PKK. His view is buttressed by the fact that Erdogan is scheduled to meet with Bush at the White House on November 5.

  19. The success or failure of the Iraqi Army, to secure Iraq, is a direct reflection of the effectiveness of the US military.

    The Mission, from almost day one, was to "Stand Them Up".

    As recently 20 Jun 06 at Camp Taji, we were on the wrong course.

    But fear not, General Jones's schedule puts US 14 to 20 months from Iraqi Army independence.

  20. Here's for example what an American officer in Anbar said some ten days ago: "Colonel Richard Simcock, commander of the Regimental Combat Team 6 of the US Marine Corps pointed out the improvement in security in Anbar province…and pointed out that somewhere between 30-40% of Shia families have returned to their homes in Anbar after they had been displaced..."Or there's the most visible example that all Baghdadis are aware of which is Karradah; despite the vicious attacks that targeted this district and the attempts to spark sectarian displacement there is still evidence of significant forced displacement of Sunni families by the Shia majority around them. In Iraq right now, as have been for a while, the greatest two threats are al-Qaeda and the Shia militias that do fight Iran's proxy war.

    Iraq, the Model

  21. The ORIGINAL Iraqi Army could have secured Iraq w/o all the killing and mayhem that has occured in the interim.
    Courtesy of the decider in Chief.

  22. Monday, October 08, 2007

    It's been two weeks since we last updated this blog so it's time I come up with some excuses for that…
    Well, honestly I have come to realize that trying to keep a serious blog frequently updated while attending an intense program at graduate school is a very difficult task.
    However this does not at all mean I intend to stop blogging…

    With time being the main constraint we are considering other means of publishing that can at the same time be less time consuming for me and perhaps more interesting to you than reading plain text. Several ideas and options in this regard are being weighed right now and I will let you know when and if those new means are finalized and ready to use, so bear with us please.
    This also does not mean that usual blogging will stop; it will continue but probably at a lower frequency.

    Posted by Omar @ 03:49
    Comments (769) |
    WHERE is Omar, to be going to graduate school?
    Interesting idea, I imagine going to a youtube format, requiring less time on his side.
    (more or less viewers on this side?)

  23. "Col. Pasquarette’s approach to counterinsurgency was clearly drawn from the “kinder, gentler” school. A climactic incident occurred in early March when Iraqi troops from Col. Saad’s brigade were repeatedly killed by sniper fire while guarding electrical and water facilities in a nearby town. Col. Saad and his men determined that the snipers were shooting from kiosks in a nearby souk. Col. Saad’s response was to order the shopkeepers to empty the vegetable stands. His men then bulldozed the stands, ending the sniper threat.

    Quoting from Mr. Jaffe’s article:

    When Col. Pasquarette learned about the incident, he was furious. The Iraqis’ actions ran completely counter to his strategy. He had told his soldiers to focus less on killing insurgents and more on reconstruction programs designed to win support of the people.


    Because the Iraqi troops operate in his sector, Col. Pasquarette oversees them. He
    called Col. Payne into his office and demanded that he tell Col. Saad to have his soldiers apologize and pay reparations to the shop owners.

    Col. Payne passed along the orders. But Col. Saad says he refused to follow them.
    “Here in Iraq if someone makes a mistake, you punish them,"
    he says, referring to the shop owners failure to give Iraqis information about the snipers.
    “If you give him money, he will repeat the mistake.

    And he will consider the person who gave him the gift an idiot.
    A True W Boner.

  24. Where's Habu when we need him?

  25. Omar, he is in NYCity, going to Columbia.

    Announced it some many weeks ago.

  26. The Immigrants will become "Regularized", one way or another.

    WASHINGTON (Associated Press) -- The Bush administration and New York agreed Saturday on a compromise creating a more secure driver's license for U.S. citizens and allowing illegal immigrants to get a version.

    New York is the fourth state to reach such an agreement, after Arizona, Vermont and Washington. The issue is pressing for border states, where new and tighter rules are soon to go into effect for crossings.
    The agreement with the Homeland Security Department will create a three-tier license system in New York, the largest state to sign on so far to the government's post-Sept. 11 effort to make identification cards more secure.

    Spitzer, who has faced much criticism on the issue, said the deal means New York "will usher in the most secure licensing system in the nation."

    Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said he was not happy that New York intended to issue IDs to illegal immigrants. But he said there was nothing he could do to stop it.

    "I don't endorse giving licenses to people who are not here legally, but federal law does allow states to make that choice," Chertoff said.

    New York will produce one ID that will be as secure as a passport and is intended for people who soon will need to meet such requirements, even for a short drive to Canada.

    A second version of the license will meet new federal standards of the Real ID Act, a law designed to make it much harder for illegal immigrants or would-be terrorists to obtain licenses.

    A third type of license will be available to undocumented immigrants. Spitzer has said this ID will make the state more secure by bringing those people "out of the shadows" and into American society, and by lowering auto insurance rates.

    New York has between 500,000 and 1 million undocumented immigrants, ...

  27. Victory is coming ...
    Victory is HERE!!!

    Another part of Iraq is in Iraqi hands!!!

    NAHRAWAN, Iraq (Associated Press) -- U.S. forces will turn over security to Iraqi authorities in Karbala province, a Shiite region in south, on Monday, the American commander for the area said. The much-delayed process has been punctuated by fierce fighting between rival militia factions.

    Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, who is in charge of the 3rd Infantry Division, said the Iraqis were ready to assume full control of their own security in the south-central province, which holds the shrines of two major Shiite saints, Imam Abbas and Imam Hussein. But U.S. troops will remain ready to step in when help is needed.

    Karbala will become only the eighth of Iraq's 18 provinces to revert to Iraqi control, despite President Bush's prediction in January that the Iraqi government would have responsibility for security in all of the provinces by November.

    Lynch dismissed concerns about rivalries among Shiites, two months after clashes between militiamen battling for power erupted during a major pilgrimage in the provincial capital of Karbala, left at least 52 people dead.

    "Of course there's violence in the area but not nearly of the magnitude that would cause me to be troubled by it," he told The Associated Press on Saturday.

    "This place is about a struggle for power and influence and there are indeed inter-Shia rivalries where different groups are trying to be in charge and sometimes they revert to violence, but it's not at the magnitude that's got me concerned," he said during a visit to a new patrol base being constructed in the Shiite city of Nahrawan.

    Johnny Come Marching Home!!!
    4th of July 2008
    Ticker Tape Away!!!

  28. This comment has been removed by the author.

  29. From my local paper today:

    John Allemang
    Poetic Justice

    Down to Business

    The war's been geat for rental shops
    and all the private-sector cops
    Who earn ungodly rates of pay
    By keeping native mobs at bay.
    Your stripped-down army's stretched too thin?
    Your weak-kneed allies won't kick in
    their share of terror-fighting gear?
    The profit motive knows no fear,
    And with our shoot-first action plan
    We'll put paid to the Taliban,
    And set a shackled people free
    (Please note that there's no guarantee)

    Big business knows what must be done
    to make sure that a war's well run
    And when your leaders come up short,
    Just count on us to hold the fort
    With all the latest high-tech frills,
    (For which, of course, you'll pay the bills).
    Admit it! you can't stand to fight,
    So let us, with lax oversight,
    Relieve you of both hard-earned cash,
    And any cares when 'copters crash.
    For both sides it works out just fine:
    Your peace of mind's our bottom line.

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  31. Not only are the Turks not taking the "Military Option" off the table, they are banging the table with it.

    Turkey's top military commander promised Saturday to make Iraq-based Kurdish rebels "grieve with an intensity that they cannot imagine," while the prime minister said his nation would fight "when needed," regardless of international pressure.

    The military chief, Gen. Yasar Buyukanit, said Friday that Turkey would wait until Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with President Bush in Washington on Nov. 5 before deciding on any cross-border offensive.

    It is easy to see why the Turks are concerned, while the US has listed the PKK as a terrorist organization, on par with the Quds Corps, Hamas and Hezzbollah, the PKK had overt offices in Iraq, until just a day or two ago.

    WASHINGTON -- The top U.S. military commander in northern Iraq said Friday that he plans to do "absolutely nothing" to counter Kurdish rebels who are making deadly cross-border attacks into neighboring Turkey.

    Maj. Gen. Benjamin Mixon said it's not his responsibility, that he's sent no additional U.S. troops to the border area, and he's not tracking hiding places or logistics activities of rebels from the Kurdistan Workers' Party.

    "Let me put it to you very clearly," Mixon said. The Kurdish authorities have their own militia, and "it's their responsibility."

    He said no one has told him to ignore the rebel problem, "but I hadn't been given instructions to do anything about it, either."

    The sanctuary policies the US obviously had in place and continues to follow concerning the PKK leaves Turkey with little relief from the terror attacks to look forward to, from changes in US security actions.

  32. Another Saturday, another loss for the University of Idaho Vandals Football Team. :(

    I am used to it, which makes it a little better.

  33. But when the muzzies say--obey!
    Will Ash just run away?

  34. Oh, the guys that didn't want their families blown up, now I remember!

    Sat Oct 27, 05:02:00 AM EDT

    (Yeah. That's what I might say, too, if I got caught stealing and distributing. If I'm lucky, some clown like you will adjudicate and it's off to the races for every other "noble-hearted", lying-ass, sticky-mitted freelancer like me. And you won't have shit to say about it, guy. (Mr. Pollard, please contact your defense attorney.))

    I've got an idea, Doug. Let's just get rid of classified. Let's unclass everything, make it all kosher for public distribution, you wouldn't have a problem with that, as you apparently don't understand the purpose of classification beyond any given range-of-the-moment agenda that's captured your Pavlovian attention.


  35. Ahh....

    That perception thing again.

    Who gets to decide "Need to know" & why?

    One man's traitor ...
    ... anothers patriot

  36. The news today: Enjoy those unclassified NIEs while you can; we're goin' back to the old way. So sayeth Negroponte.

  37. Then we'll have to believe what ever the NYTimes sees fit to print, of the leaked edition.

    Rally the Homefront by drying up the "Good News" from the Front.

    Exact opposite of what they should be doing, to rally the troops.

  38. Well, the Bush administration decided in 01 to unclassify traditionally classified NIEs (executive summary, anyway) in order to garner public support for the woah.

    The problem, as so stated, is that this has caused difficulties for some allies - distinctly plausible and probably true.

    Now they're in a damned if they do, damned if they don't situation.

  39. "I have no idea what Ms Glick is talking about"

    Neither does Ms Glick.

  40. But the Syrians were just cleaning up drop tank residue, right?
    Trish, the only "human" who is never wrong!

  41. I understand classified, Trish:
    Our son teaches us each and every time he's with us.
    That was not my point, nor the writer of the articles point.
    The point was ALL THE FAILURES OF INTEL IN GENERAL, AND THE CIA, IN PARTICULAR, due to refusing to share when little is lost and things like 911 can be avoided.
    But like you, the CIA is never wrong.

  42. The best part of Glick's piece, given her diagnosis and prescription for action, is the title.

  43. Congress should have legislation to revers King Bushies license farce and start impeachment proceedings forthwith.
    But, of course, they won't.

  44. The best part of Trish is NEVER admitting error.
    About those "drop tanks," Trish?

  45. "refusing to share"

    Not like the fucking law had anything to do with it.

    But that isn't your particular concern, is it, given your particularly wide stance on the law. Control of national security secrets? Pfffffft, we don't need no stinkin' control. We've got some war-trophy-stashing scumbag at Bragg takin' care o' business. Honest.

    It's not even a slippery slope you're advocating. It's a fucking cliff.

    You first.

  46. You're too narrow minded to understand the point of the piece:
    Not that these guys were right, just that we manifestly still have a sharing problem
    Those "drop tanks," Trish?
    (try 5)