“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."

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Pakistani Times Square Bomber Shahzad, Son of Senior Pakistani Army Officer, Must be Saying Some Interesting Things

Pakistan's foreign minister explains how America's foreign policy of using drones to attack terrorists in Pakistan is stirring up hatred for America and is the likely cause for the Time Square bombing

Janet Napolitano, in charge of Homeland Security, initially speculated that Shahzad was a "one off" and New York’s Democratic Senator Charles Schumer suggested, early on, “The odds are quite high that this was a lone wolf.” One week later, it seems that much has changed.

The New York Times reports that the Obama Administration has given Pakistan "stiff warnings" about Pakistani rooted terrorism including Islamic militancy.

What has Shahzad been telling?

According to the article, General McChrystal has told the Pakistanis, “ ‘You can’t pretend any longer that this is not going on,’ ” The Pakis were also told, “ ‘We are saying you have got to go into North Waziristan.’ ”

The big question is, how many more Shahzads are out there and what are we going to do about it?

You also have to wonder, what did Shahzad hear at home from his senior military father and his senior military friends and colleagues? I think a safe bet is severe criticism of US policy in and around Pakistan.

We have big problems in nuclear Islamic Pakistan, but please don't mention the Islamic part and maybe not the nuclear part.


U.S. Urges Action in Pakistan After Failed Bombing

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — The Obama administration has delivered new and stiff warnings to Pakistan after the failed Times Square car bombing that it must urgently move against the nexus of Islamic militancy in the country’s lawless tribal regions, American and Pakistani officials said.

The American military commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, met with the Pakistani military chief, Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, at his headquarters here on Friday and urged Pakistan to move more quickly in beginning a military offensive against the Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda in North Waziristan, Americans and Pakistanis familiar with the visit said. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the delicacy of continuing diplomatic efforts here.

The Pakistani-American man who admitted to the Times Square attack, Faisal Shahzad, 30, told American investigators that he had received training in North Waziristan, the main base for the Pakistani Taliban, Al Qaeda and other militant groups.

The new pressure from Washington was characterized by both the Pakistani and American officials as a sharp turnaround from the relatively polite encouragement adopted by the Obama administration in recent months. And it comes amid increasing debate within the administration about how to expand the American military’s influence — and even a boots-on-the-ground presence — on Pakistani soil.

Though the bombing in Times Square failed, Mr. Shahzad’s ability to move back and forth between the United States and Pakistan has heightened fears in the Obama administration that another attempt at a terrorist attack could succeed.

“We are saying, ‘Sorry, if there is a successful attack, we will have to act’ ” within Pakistan, one of the American officials said.

That issue has been a source of growing tension between the countries. Pakistani officials, already alarmed by the increase in American drone aircraft attacks against militants in northwestern Pakistan, have been extremely sensitive about any hint that American ground troops could become involved in the fight. And attempts by the United States to increase the presence of Special Operations forces there even in an advisory or training role have been met with great resistance by the Pakistanis.

The Pakistani military has stepped up its campaigns against militants in the past year, including an offensive in South Waziristan that has been praised by American officials. It has said that it is preparing to take up the fight against militants in North Waziristan. But Pakistani officials have insisted that the expanded campaign will happen completely on their own terms, and they have warned the Obama administration not to push so hard that it uses up the good will it has tried to foster here.

But the Americans’ urgency has been increasing on multiple fronts. With an intensified American military campaign raging against the Taliban next door in Afghanistan, and now with the renewed evidence of Pakistani sources for plots to attack on American soil, it was clear the Pakistani government had to do more, and more urgently, a senior American official said Saturday.

General Kayani, with whom General McChrystal has forged a positive relationship, was essentially told, “ ‘You can’t pretend any longer that this is not going on,’ ” another American official said. “ ‘We are saying you have got to go into North Waziristan.’ ”

The American ambassador to Pakistan, Anne Patterson, met Pakistan’s president, Asif Ali Zardari, after the failed bombing and used “forceful” language to convey the American point that the Pakistanis had to move more assertively against the militants threaded through the society, a Pakistani official said.

“The element of threat is definitely different from the last few months,” said Tariq Fatemi, a former Pakistani ambassador who also served in the United States. .

The Obama administration was planning to use the failed terrorist attack to impress on the Pakistanis of the urgency of getting American development aid in place in the tribal areas where militancy thrives, and into Karachi, the biggest city, where radical religious schools, known as madrasas, are popular.

“Last week’s incident makes it more urgent and more true” of the need to bring stability and security to these areas where the militants have multiplied, an American official said.

About $150 million was appropriated by Congress for assistance to the tribal areas in the coming period for reconstruction and other projects. But a host of problems, including American insistence on being able to monitor the money being spent, has made it a slow process.

Since Mr. Shahzad’s arrest in the Times Square attack, each country has, to some extent, blamed the other. Many Pakistanis insist that Mr. Shahzad is an American citizen who was radicalized in the United States by the difficulties he found living there as a Muslim. The Americans stress that Mr. Shahzad has traveled more than a dozen times back to Pakistan from the United States since 1999, and appeared to have received his military training in the epicenter of militancy, North Waziristan.

Mr. Shahzad’s background as the son of a senior Pakistani military officer has embarrassed the Pakistani Army, the most powerful institution in the country, and which receives generous financing from the United States. Mr. Shahzad’s father was a vice marshal in the Pakistani Air Force, and it appears that Mr. Shahzad grew up around senior military officers.

After Mr. Shahzad told American investigators that he was trained in bomb making in North Waziristan, the Pakistani Army tried to play down that claim, portraying it as unlikely.

The Pakistani Taliban took initial responsibility for the bombing attempt. Days later, though, their spokesman denied any involvement, a statement that may have been prompted by fears that their early claim of ownership of Mr. Shahzad might result in a direct attack on the North Waziristan enclave by the Americans, or the Pakistanis.


  1. Someone asked a good question: was Shahzad placed by the Taliban to get his US citizenship?

  2. It always has been Pakistan, that was the enemy, with regards aQ and the Taliban.

    They always will be.

    We've paid them tribute, it has not been enough. Not to placate their radicals in the Army and ISI.

    That real threat has always been Pakistan, never Iran.

    Though that does not play to the Israeli/Saudi tune, so the US does not dance to reality, in this "war" with the Islamoid radicals, that have attacked US.

    Wonder how much equipment General Dynamics has sold, to the Pakistani, with that $10 billion plus in US tribute payments we've paid to Islamabad.

  3. The ISI, Deuce, the ISI.

    They ARE the Taliban.

    Look to the folks behind the curtain, the producers of the show, not just the actors on the stage.

    Without producers, the show cannot go on.

    Just like in Bollywood.

  4. Well, it is till going on this morning. GEO TV in Pakistan is reporting this:

    US drone strike kills 10 in Pakistan: officials

    Updated at: 1044 PST, Sunday, May 09, 2010

    MIRANSHAH: A US drone fired two missiles into a house in North Waziristan Agency (NWA) on Sunday, killing at least 10 rebels, local security officials said.

    The strike took place in Inzarkas village, 50 kilometres (31 miles) west of Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan tribal district, known as a hub for Taliban and Al-Qaeda linked militants.

    "The missiles struck a militant compound in the village, killing at least 10 rebels," a senior Pakistani security official in the area said on condition of anonymity.

    Another security official confirmed the strike and casualties but said the nationalities of those killed in the attack were not yet known.

    He said: "The compound became suspicious as it was being used by foreigners."

    Pakistani officials use the term "foreigners" for Al-Qaeda linked militants operating in the tribal regions.

    "It was, however, not immediately known if any high-value target was present in the area at the time of attack," the official said.

    US forces have been waging a covert drone war against Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked commanders in the country's northwestern tribal belt, where militants have carved out havens in mountainous areas outside direct government control.

    More than 900 people have been killed in over 100 drone strikes in Pakistan since August 2008."

  5. I was beginning to wonder if the" botched bombing" in NYC was a signal to the US as to what was possible.

  6. Me thinks that something has stirred things up in DC and there is much more to this story than they are telling.

  7. There is almost no reason that the bombing should have not worked. All the components were there and it was delivered on target.

    It doesn't take much imagination to envision a dozen of these happening at the same time.

  8. By the way DR, and for the record, Buddy Larsen did in fact drop in and complimented you for being early and right in your bloodied burka, over Iraq.

  9. How does the US respond to the obvious with Pakistan?

    Attorney General Eric Holder said on Sunday the Pakistani Taliban was behind the attempted Times Square car bombing in New York.

    "We've now developed evidence that show the Pakistani Taliban was behind the attack," Holder said in an interview on ABC television's "This Week."

  10. There is no way at this point to extricate ourselves from the threat of domestic terrorism - with links to the conflict and Islamist organizations abroad. They're going to keep coming out of the woodwork.

    That any particular month should pass without an above-the-fold incident is utterly remarkable. Let me say that again: Utterly remarkable.

    The 72-hour Miranda waiver, established under the last administration, has rather unfortunately become more important than ever. And these Constitutional cut-aways are going to find newer and larger life under the current administration, probably via the route of immigration policy rather than by the route of national security policy. A matter of political tactic.

    We whittle away in Pakistan and have to contain blow back at home.

    What's that song by Queen? Under Pressure.

    We're under pressure.

  11. And this administration is fully aware that it has no room for movement - none - on the national security front, except in the direction of expansion of ongoing efforts and means. Because the Republican Party effectively owns that issue and if you want to continue in office, you cannot afford to backslide nor even merely stand pat on established policy.

  12. Trish is right.

    Given the US footprint in the world, continued attacks on us are inevitable.

    That eventually one will succeed is also inevitable.

    She has also identified changes that have been gradually implemented in restricting and narrowing our rights as US citizens in the quest for security. She didn't specifically say how she viewed these changes, good, bad, necessary, so I won't assume where she stands.

    As I've stated before, my position is you don't play the part of useful idiots and sign away your rights as citizens out of fear. I don't always agree with Glen Beck, but I do in this case.


  13. If this Administration has no wiggle room on security (and we know they don't) they will have to undo some of what has been done under Holder and certain other of their more radical cronies.

    Idealistic platitudes go down well with the hoipolloi with blue sky and clear sailing. Not so well in stormy weather.

    What Obama and Co. need to acknowledge and maybe they are beginning to, is the inevitable and eventually successful blowback from the Taliban in retaliation for the not so covert drone strikes.

  14. Rat is correct that the Paki's are a problem..

    Where Rat is still wrong is on Iran...

    It's not an either or problem

    Iran, Arabia, Pakistan are all part of the problem

    and the problem is Islamic Jihad...

    nothing new..

    Pakistan is the new head of the hydra...

    same snake, different head..

  15. Nov 5, 2009, a devout Muslim US Army major kills 12 and wounds 31 at Fort Hood.

    On December 25, 2009, Northwest Airlines international flight 253 a passenger claiming he was with the Al Qaeda set off a small explosive.

    On 29 December 2009 a Taliban suicide bomber killed seven CIA employees at a remote outpost in southeastern Afghanistan by playing the CIA as a double agent.

    At times and places of their choosing, Islamic terrorists are targeting and killing American civilian, military and US intelligence agents on their soil and on their military bases.

    Greek mobs and a computer glitch or a possible cyber attack on Wall Street did hundreds of billions of dollars worth of destruction to American financial capital.

    The NYC bombing attempt could have killed many and had it been successful and done in concert with others would have caused hundreds of billions of dollars of destruction to American finances.

    Talk about asymmetry. You can never win with such odds. Never. If you cannot win you have two, possibly three choices: quit, change the rules of the game, or both.

    You can quit, but you have to weed out from the US those considered hostile and stop the flow of others in. The US would have to withdraw from Afghanistan.

    The only way to win is to hold the nation state responsible and force them to be accountable for what happens from their soil or their citizens.

    Pakistan is a nuclear power and and if 5% of the population is stark raving Islamic mad, you have a problem times 7,000,000.

    You could do both, quit Afghanistan and give a clear, private unambiguous promise to return with a more persuasive and lethal reaction to future attacks.

  16. The current "Pacific" series on HBO is telling.

    Two generations ago, the US political and military establishment declared the entire entity, Japan the enemy. It made no distinction between military and civilian. Combatants and non-combatants were indistinguishable and not considered.

    Waziristan could be selected as was Iwo Jima, Peleliu and Guadalcanal and could be destroyed as effectively. We will not do it yet.

    Could we or will we in the future? After another 911?

    Yes and maybe

  17. The admin picked up pretty quickly - before the inauguration - on what it could do, what we are capable of doing, abroad. But then the difficult issue became the homeland. And here's where the learning curve has been painful.

    I know that those who have moved into the homeland security arena from that of more strictly foreign security are...Well, it's hair-raising: the real, everyday potential of the shit to meet the fan (again) here at home.

    This is something that I realize liberals in general do not, by nature, take very seriously, more inclined to believe it's all hype. Political hype.

    Were that the case.

  18. I saw a poll the other day in which 4% of Pakis have a favorable impression of the U.S.

    The first thing to do is cut off ALL travel to, and from, Pakistan. If Pakistan is stamped on your passport you don't get in. If you are an American Citizen with Pakistan on your passport you are, immediately, arrested, and charged with a Felony, and held as a National Security Risk.

    Then we bomb the holy hell out of Waziristan, getting ever closer to Islamabad, until Pakistan acts.

    Cut off ALL aid, immediately.

  19. Leaving SW Asia. That's exactly what I was thinking about

    The conundrum will be how to extricate without appearing defeated.

    WRT Afghanistan - We're practicing COIN (of sorts) but it makes it a whole lot simpler when you're not emotionally invested with the locals and your major decision is how high to make the rubble bounce.

  20. Gates says urgent need to cut defense bureaucracy

    "Warring against waste, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Saturday he is ordering a top-to-bottom paring of the military bureaucracy in search of at least $10 billion in annual savings needed to prevent an erosion of U.S. combat power...

    "That means cutting what he called "overhead" -- the bureaucratic machinery that he said chews up about 40 percent of the Pentagon's budget.

    "In this category he included the hierarchy of flag officers -- the generals and admirals who run the military services.

    "To illustrate his point that there are too many of these top officers, Gates said that while the overall troop strength of the Army was sliced by nearly 40 percent during the 1990s, the reduction in generals and admirals across the military was about half that. He suggested that this was a top-heavy structure that is making it harder to get proper resources to the war fronts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    "Consider that a request for a dog-handling team in Afghanistan -- or for any other unit -- has to go through no fewer than five four-star headquarters in order to be processed, validated and eventually dealt with," he said...

    Gates Orders Pentagon Cuts



  21. "If you are an American Citizen with Pakistan on your passport you are, immediately, arrested, and charged with a Felony, and held as a National Security Risk."

    Good heavens Rufus, why don't you just hide under your bed until the all-clear is sounded?



  22. Do what I do and walk around in a Happy Bubble every day.


    Most days.

  23. We have always placed restrictions on places Americans could travel (eg China, Soviet Union, N. Vietnm, Cuba.) It's crazy to have people flying back and forth to Pakistan. It endangers our citizens, and serves no conceivable purpose for the Country.

    Those assholes are at war with us, regardless of what the Leadership says publicly. It's time to acknowledge it.

  24. This fall GM will introduce the Buick Regal with an engine that gets, essentially, the same mileage on E85 as on straight gasoline. We haven't seen the exact figures, yet, but I expect it will be in the range of 30 mpg on an 85% ethanol blend.

    It is a very powerful turbocharged, direct-injected, 2.0 liter powerplant. You can bet your bippy that Ford will announce a similar Eco-boost in a couple of weeks.

    Half of all new cars will have this engine by 2012.

    A company called Fiberight Started Making ethanol from Municipal Solid Waste last week. They project their cost per gallong to be $1.86/gal.

    Poet, the world's largest ethanol producer will be producing ethanol from corn cobs in 2012. They project a cost of about $2.00/gal.

    Novozymes, the enzyme company that supplies most of the enzymes (and just made a Huge breakthrough in the technology) and Dupont-Danisco who just did the same, are, also projecting $2.00 for ethanol from switchgrass.

    We can be Off of Foreign Oil within 4 years if we institute a "Crash course" Today.

    Exxon, Chevron, Shell Don't want this. Your State Senator Doesn't want this. Obama doesn't want this (I don't believe.)

    BUT, We CAN do this.

  25. I assumed you were being a little hyperbolically facetious in your first post.

    Your last post makes more sense.

    There is no need to throw "citizens" in jail for doing what is legal. However, the US government has the ability to impose travel restrictions such as they do with Cuba.

    The problem is they won't do it. Over the past 20 or so years, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have been the two biggest exporters of jihadists. However, the US hasn't been willing to ruffle feathers in either country because of what it perceives as other overriding interests.

    Until that changes, not much else will change.


  26. Shortages?

    Shit it just keeps getting worse.

    New Shortages


  27. That "Overriding Interest," of course, is Oil.

    Oil runs our Economy. We Have to have it. The Middle East supplies about 40% of the Globe's oil.

    End the Dependence of Foreign Oil, and you go a long way to ending the "Problem." Now, for the first time, ever, we have the wherewithal to do that. All it takes is the action.

    The Computer Age has given us the ability to build the engine.

    The Advances in Biology have given us the Enzymes to break cellulose down into sugar.

    The Age of Capitalism has given us the Capital to do it.

    If we can just break through the "Wall of Ignorance" that allows the Vested Interests to keep us enslaved.

  28. duece wrote:

    "Greek mobs and a computer glitch or a possible cyber attack on Wall Street did hundreds of billions of dollars worth of destruction to American financial capital."

    It appears neither are true unless you consider a lack of buyers and a lack of circuit breakers a "computer glitch". I think what happened is described in the following article:

    "The much-discussed “stock market” — with its connotation of a single entity — is a misnomer. Investors can buy and sell stocks through about 50 markets in the United States. Most of the trades are placed through computer networks, at the direction of computer programs, and orders are routed automatically to the market offering the best price.

    It is a system that sometimes spins out of control if the computerized sellers cannot find enough buyers. Last year, on April 28, 2009, the stock price of Dendreon, a Seattle biotechnology company, plunged 69 percent in 70 seconds before trading was halted. When trading resumed the next day, most of the loss was instantly erased.

    The same pattern unfolded Thursday, as shares in companies including Procter & Gamble fell precipitously.

    Because such declines can reflect a temporary shortage of buyers rather than a permanent loss of value, some of the markets impose “circuit breakers” that pause trading to protect sellers from taking unnecessary losses. The New York Stock Exchange, for example, briefly suspended trading in some shares on Thursday, then slowed the pace of trading to give sellers a better chance to find buyers.

    But experts say such safeguards make sense only if they are applied uniformly. When the New York exchange suspended trading Thursday, sellers simply moved to other exchanges with fewer restrictions. In some cases, the supply of buyers on those exchanges already had been exhausted, causing the computerized trading programs to offer shares at lower and lower prices. Some of the resulting downward spirals ended at one penny."

  29. trish wrote:

    "And these Constitutional cut-aways are going to find newer and larger life... "

    Is the Constitution a sacred document? or as some have argued 'The Constitution is not a suicide pact'?

    On the one hand you have gun control advocates arguing that we should limit the rights of citizens to bear arms and on the other you have folk arguing that we should suspend certain constitutional rights to fight terrorism. Should we negotiate the shades of gray?

  30. Ash, Freedom, and Democracy is, always, about "negotiating the shades of gray."

  31. not according to the Constitutional purists. The founders knew best dontcha know?

  32. Ash, my experience is, the "purists" will get you broke, and/or dead. I don't like "messing around" with the Constitution, but a lot of people find stuff in the Constitution that I can't find.

    Our biggest protection is the 2yr election cycle. An election can solve a lot of problems. Just ask Bill Bennet (temporary 3 term Republican Senator from Utah.)

  33. I might be getting ready to have a "Trish" moment with one of MY definitive statements. In fact, Trish's pick in Colombia seems to be "coming back," whereas MY statement that the deficit is likely to come in "Less" than a Trillion is starting to look a bit shakey.

    I was figuring that we would probably have at least a small surplus in April. If we don't, and hit any "bumps" in the road at all, I won't make it. Let's just say, "it's Not looking like a slam-dunk at this point."

  34. Oh, BTW, Happy Mothers Day to Trish, and Melody, and any other "biological" Mothers out there.

    As for "mothers" like Doug, LT, Ash, and Q, well, your day is surely coming. :)

  35. The Consensus of the Experts is that my hopes for a small surplus in April is a pipe dream.

    The problem with April is, all the serious money, if there is to be any, gets counted during the first week of May, and thus, doesn't get onto the daily numbers. The "Pros," who, I have to assume, have better info than I, are saying that all the "profits" from the last quarter of last year got "wrote off," and the receipts are slim.

    Dang it; that "would have been" a heck of a call.

  36. Thank you, rufus. And what a truly lovely Mother's Day, to boot.

    Ash, if there's going to be effective pushback on Miranda erosion, where's it going to come from at this point? From within the federal judicial and law enforcement establishments themselves.

    Those DFHs. ; )

  37. DFH?


    I'm searching but I ain't got nuthin!

    well, I got Dirty Fuckin' Hippies - that it?

  38. I read that the Republicans in Utah started getting very irritated with Bob Bennett when he voted for cloture on the amnesty bill. Them Utahians got some long memories, too.

  39. Utes would make good EB'ers.

  40. Yep, that's it. I meant it endearingly.

    However. Rufus brought up "gray areas." Surely the point must be to firmly establish the protocol on custodial interviews specifically in cases of terrorism. That is: To make it *less* gray.

    The overriding concern HAS TO BE follow on attacks. It CANNOT BE the eventual prosecution or conviction. Because you've either got your shit together at the point of interdiction or you're just dicking around. It's all about the potential follow on.

    And 48 hrs (give or take) seems reasonable max time to hold back the Miranda. The information the guy's likely holding wrt any other, related action is so perishable that beyond that window, Miranda-less questioning is really pointless. Your time horizon, thankfully, is a short one.

  41. And I hope that made sense because I'm, ah, up two beers and helpfully relating someone else's thoughts on the matter.

  42. Slippery slope though, 48 hrs, why not two weeks? Do rights only apply to some folk?

    Additional Constitutional stuff seem to reside around Warrantless surveillance and jurisdiction/

  43. time for dinner and some wine for me. Maybe I can make sense of the world after that!

  44. "why not two weeks?"

    A. Actually don't need it.

    2. We're talking about American citizens, after all.

  45. Let's not forget what miranda rights mean

    all thAt it means is that intel collected will not be used against you for in trial

    there is nothing wrong with questioning leading to the arrest of others

  46. Actually, my understanding is that you always have the rights Miranda just means that the suspect needs to be informed before the information obtained can be used against them. Even if you read a detainee the Miranda you can still question them. Nothing really changes other than that the suspect has been informed explicitly.

    p.s. trish, for someone so not too friendly with Cheney you seem to be adopting his position regarding rights - i.e. national security trumps individual rights.

  47. your answer "A. Actually don't need it." being what determines a right as opposed to the right itself. In other words what the states needs determines the individuals right as opposed to the something vested in the individual.

    see, the wine (and aperitif) work wonders!

  48. ...doesn't work wonders for the grammar ect.

  49. Miranda rights is all about self incrimination..

    If the government wants to question you and says "we will not use anything you say against you in a court of law" then the suspect's rights are not abridged..

    To me?

    I'd waterboard the islamic terrorists..

    and if that didnt work? electrodes up his ass...

    and then when were were through?

    hang his ass and bury him in a pig skin...

    put it on youtube...

    and proclaim, Islam is a religion of peace, however this islamic warrior was a piece of crap and now he rots in hell, don't like it?


    So all this talk about islamic terrorists and rights?

    give me a break...

    torture him at once...

    make him piss himself....

    shove a can of spam up his ass and then?

    get 15 strippers to fling used tampons at him...

    enough of this bullshit...

  50. And here I thought I was being helpful offering a utilitarian counterpoint. Can't win for losin'.

    Yes, in cases specifically of terrorism some members of my household who are (maybe paradoxically) extremely leery of national security encroachments upon US citizens, do however believe that in cases specifically of terrorism, a window of Miranda-less questioning is warranted.

    Realizing also that the onus is on fedgov to know its business and not screw the pooch, getting hauled into court itself by Willy Lunchmeat held and questioned on some remote suspicion. That would suck.

  51. But see, trish, that is what has me puzzled - legal wise - "specifically in cases of terrorism". How do you differentiate? Folks have rights and are presumed innocent upon proven guilty but unless someone, somewhere, (more forcefully if you are wearing a US uniform) utters the word "terror" and the world then changes? It doesn't make sense in light of the basics of our law.

  52. *cough* *cough* "until proven guilty".

  53. "...the suspect needs to be informed before the information obtained can be used against them."

    And that's not true either.

  54. There ain't no easy answer on this one, folks. All you can do is come up with a "reasonable" answer.

  55. doesn't wiki know all?

    "The Miranda warning is a warning given by police in the United States to criminal suspects in police custody, or in a custodial situation, before they are interrogated. A custodial situation is one in which the suspect's freedom of movement is restrained (judged by the "free to leave" test), even if he is not under arrest.[1] An elicited incriminating statement by a suspect will not constitute admissible evidence unless the suspect was informed of his/her "Miranda rights" and made a knowing, intelligent, and voluntary waiver of those rights. However, a 2004 Supreme Court ruling upheld state "stop-and-identify" laws, allowing police in those jurisdictions to require biographical information such as name, date of birth, and address, without arresting suspects or providing them Miranda warnings."

    I am, of course, open to other SUPPORTED interpretations.

  56. "How do you differentiate?"

    Well, you can start with having explosives in your underpants. That's a pretty good differentiation.

    It's all downhill from here, Ash.

    I'm up four.

    And my beloved pencil pusher (not one of you useless Aaaaarlington folks) is otherwise engaged.

    And anything I've said can and will be used against me here tomorrow. And the next day. And the next.

  57. What committee, what deliberative body, what fact checker makes the determination that a.) those are underpants, and b.) those are explosives, and c.) the intended use of that style of underpants was to use terror to further political goals?

    You are putting the cart before the horse or, as a lawyer might say "you are assuming facts not yet supported by evidence".

  58. nite nite *smooch* - tell another day.

  59. accctuallly before I slip off how about a more mundane example-

    I'm discovered traveling with a trunk load of washing machine timers. Terrorist or washing repairman? A pertinent question in Iraq...or, maybe, nowadays, Times Square.

  60. Ash said...
    What committee, what deliberative body, what fact checker makes the determination that a.) those are underpants, and b.) those are explosives, and c.) the intended use of that style of underpants was to use terror to further political goals?

    You are putting the cart before the horse or, as a lawyer might say "you are assuming facts not yet supported by evidence".

    spoken like a true nitwit...

    what planet do you live on ash?

    when a guy is grabbed after trying to light his nuts on fire on a plane and his underwear has a load in it that aint poop? he's a terrorist...

    maybe you should let your kids or wife be a human shield for some palestinian homemade rockets for a while...

  61. Misdirection compares the authoritarian Israeli to freedom loving US citizens, and thinks that the US citizens come up short.

    Well, amigo, as the news from the frontier exemplifies, we are living with the "incoming", daily.

    With little whining about how hard it is to extend established legal and hopefully the basic human rights described in the Declaration to all the people falling within the jurisdiction of the US Constitution.

    He does not begin to comprehend what makes US exceptional.

    Which is why he denies the rights of the individual, and campaigns for group think and residency quotas.

  62. The Obama White House appears to be growing up. Guantanamo is still open. No one in their right mind believes that they will try Sheik and Bake in Manhattan and they now are wanting a little more latitude in questioning, dare I say, terrorists.

    Anoter OJT success story for the 90 day wonder?

  63. The Obama administration had said a civilian trial would take place in New York. That follows through on Mr. Obama's campaign promises to close the detention facility at U.S. Naval Base Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and his attacks against the Bush administration's military tribunals.


    Mr. Holder continued: "We are working to see exactly where the trial will be held. Nothing is really off the table at this point.

    We're going to come up with a place where these people can be brought to justice as quickly as we can, taking into consideration a variety of things that we have to consider."

    Times Square Plot

  64. I'd say not, Deuce, but another example of the consistency of policy, despite who is elected, or their personal positions.

    The Federal Presidency is bigger than the man, any man. It's an institution the lumbers on, hard to turn, like any other Leviathan.

  65. "The Pakistanis have been doing so much more than 18 months or two years ago any of us would have expected," Gates told reporters at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., this week.


    Gates said the Obama administration is sticking to its policy of offering to do as much training and other military activity inside Pakistan as the Pakistani government is willing to accept.

    "It's their country," Gates said. "They remain in the driver's seat, and they have their foot on the accelerator."

    NYC Bomb

  66. The more sand that has escaped from the hourglass of our life, the clearer we should glom because of it.