Plus: Did Clarke Actually "Aplogize" At All?
The AP -- reluctantly, we must imagine -- reports.
Frist slams Clarke for his apology as well:
In a sharply worded speech, Frist said that Clarke himself was "the only common denominator" across 10 years of terrorist attacks that began with the first attack on the World Trade Center.
Additionally, he accused Clarke of "an appalling act of profiteering" by publishing a book that relied on access to insider information relating to the worst terrorist attacks in the nation's history.
He also accused him of making a "theatrical apology" to the families of the terrorist victims at the outset of his appearance on Wednesday, saying it was not "his right, his privilege or his responsibility" to do so.
"Mr. Clarke can and will answer for his own conduct -- but that is all," he said.
We've been meaning to hit this particular point. Clarke's "apology" was self-serving bullshit. If he was really apologizing, why did he not point to specific mistakes he made? When someone makes a general, vague, "I coulda done better" non-apology "apology," they're seeking to claim the moral high ground of someone who's coming clean about specific mistakes while actually avoiding the actual key to an apology, i.e., the actual coming clean about specific mistakes.
Clarke had quite a record. He was an anti-terrorism big-wig throughout multiple attacks on Americans throughout the nineties and 00's, to which America responded lamely, both militarily and in terms of internal security.
Clarke's "apology" would carry more real weight if he specified in what specific ways he'd contributed to deaths of his fellow Americans.
But of course he did no such thing. Because he wasn't really apologizing at all. His grandstanding non-apology was not intended to draw attention to his countless mistakes, but to rather pump him up in the public's mind as a truth-teller who takes "responsibility."
Very well, Mr. Clarke. Take responsibility. Tell us the specific mistakes you made that led to American deaths. Then we'll consider you to be sincere in your apology, rather than peddling your "if only they'd listened to me" memoir via a very cynical marketing strategy.
Clarke can't very well claim to be "apologizing" while insisting piously that he was the only man in American government who got everything right, all along. What is he "apologizing" for, precisely? That he's sorry he couldn't have been even more
superhumanly dedicated and prescient in his anti-terrorism efforts?
Or is he "apologizing" that the mean Bush Administration didn't listen to him?
If the latter -- which is what he's clearly doing -- that's not an "apology," and it is dishonest to call it such. What that is is a criticism of someone else, not self-criticism.
It reminds us of what we always say in a job interview when asked what our "greatest failing" is. "Our greatest failing," we say with an introspectively-furrowed brow, "is that we sometimes care just too darn much
about getting everything perfect and double-checked."
Based on our experience, then, it sounds like Mr. Clarke is interviewing for a job.
Shays: Clarke Claims "Revisionist"
Chris Shays is a liberal-leaning Connecticut Republican. So he's a bit of a canary in the coal mine on divisive issues.
He doesn't seem impressed by Dick Clarke:
Noting Clarke told the subcommittee in June, 2000 that there was: "no need for an assessment" of the terrorist threat, Shays stated, "Mr. Clarke is engaging in revisionist history, apparently for personal partisan reasons. The fact is, when he had the authority and responsibility to craft U.S. counterterrorism policies, he consistently failed to articulate a cogent strategy or plan to Congress."
Prior to September 2001, three national commissions -- Bremer, Gilmore and Hart/Rudman -- had concluded the U.S. needed a comprehensive threat assessment, a national strategy and a plan to reorganize the federal response to the new strategic menace of terrorism. The National Security Subcommittee, which Shays chairs, held 20 hearings and two formal briefings before September 11th on terrorist threats and preparedness.
Shays noted that at a briefing on June 28, 2000, he asked Mr. Clarke, then serving as President Clinton's Special Assistant and National Coordinator, Security, Infrastructure Protection, and Counterterrorism, when an all-source threat assessment and strategy would be completed. His answer: "No assessment has been done, and there is no need for an assessment, I know the threat."
"No need for an assessment."
"No need for an assessment."
Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if we had a media that actually reported relevant information?
Hat tip: FreeRepublic.
Our Indispensible Allies, Part XXIV: An Insignificance of Canadians
BostonIrish field correspondent Windy City
notes that Canada -- you know, the country mostly tucked up inside the Arctic Circle -- has a navy which is not "ice-capable."
Clarke Personally Supervised bin Ladin Family Exodus
Tim Blair makes a nice sideline catch:
It was Clarke who personally authorized the evacuation by private plane of dozens of Saudi citizens, including many members of Osama bin Laden's own family, in the days immediately following Sept. 11.
Hmmmm... Since the Hysterical Left believes that this was done as some sort of Bush-bin Ladin crime family operation, I guess that makes their newfound bestest friend a high-ranking caporegime.
Powell on Dipomacy and Force
has a nice-sized excerpt from Powell's speech last night. It's a thoughtful linkage of power and influence. It's not groundbreaking, but it is a smart expression of the value of force.
"Diplomacy without power," he says, "is just naked pleading." Indeed.
Witness the French. Or Europe generally. Without real power, all that's left is "naked pleading." And as it becomes increasingly obvious that naked pleading isn't especially persuasive, the shrillness and hysteria of that pleading increases, due to frustration and impotency.
Europe finds itself in the same position as a child who desperately wants a cookie which an adult is unwilling to give it, and has no good way to barter for it on terms approaching those between equals. So, like a child, it can only stamp its feet and wail louder and louder.
Eventually the adult begins to ignore the child completely.
A "Seaborne" Attack... By Retards
So let's get this straight: These two guys rent scuba gear for the day, dog paddle out into the water, shoot weapons ineffectively at a beach, and then get killed.
Apparently the Palestinians have opted for an All-Retard, All-the-Time strategy.
A nation of James Bonds this is. These people like to fancy themselves "warriors." Okay-- "warriors" whose only skill is killing unsuspecting women and children civilians with hidden bombs.
We never stop hearing about how "humiliated" these homosexual-panic Islamist men feel. Well, maybe. But we've got nothing to do with that. They humiliate themselves.
Spending, Confidence Up
The expansion continues apace.
Miller vs. Alterman Update
Day by Day
(for Mar. 26) cartoons the encounter.
Hat tip to Nick for bringing it to our attention.
Ministry of Silly Links
Over at The Perfect World, they've got a folder called "Games & Goofiness," and inside of that, a thread called "Check this out,"
where people post funny links they find. Here are a couple of good ones.
Computer Geeks Ruined the Kevin Bacon Game
Okay, sure, no one's really played this game for six or seven years now. Still, we've been waiting on the inevitable revival
, at which point our encyclopaedic knowledge all the cameos at the end of She's Having a Baby
would make us seem somewhat cool at a party again.
Uhhm, yeah, that's a pretty sad fantasy. Way to aim high, Ace of Spades!
At any rate, you can now link anyone to anyone else through several different media
with just a couple of mouse-clicks.
How far from Greta Garbo to Ralph Macchio in terms of movie links? Just two-- two, can you believe it?
The software doesn't recognize some obscure older actors -- like the bit-player known as John Wayne -- and it doesn't recognize porn stars unless they've been in a real movie. Still, you can get a solid four minutes of time-killing out of it.
How To Dance Like a Proper Jackass
It's good stuff. Save "Ride the Pony" until the end.
How to Deconstruct Almost Anything
A computer programmer attempts to learn postmodernism/lit-crit theory. Not really very funny, but pretty spot-on.
That Rube Goldberg Honda Ad
You've probably seen it, but if you haven't, it's a must-see.
So Dumb It Hurts
Okay, here's a sheet of electronic bubblewrap. Burst the bubbles.
Not as much fun as real bubble-wrap bubble-bursting.
What If You Could Turn Your Car... Into an X-Wing Fighter?
No, don't be so dismissive just because your friends are around and you want to look "cool." What if you could really make your car look pretty much like some variant-body X-wing?
This guy did it.
Dork? Without question. But he's a dork tooling around in a Rebel Alliance groundspeeder. What are you
driving, Mr. Cool?
Zork: The Elsinore Adventure
And this is the best. It's Hamlet as a Zork-like text-based adventure. Go North to talk to Horatio and hear about the ghost of your father, and the adventure begins!
We're still trying to find Yorick's skull. We assume we'll need that to unlock the Silver Door.
Today's Top Ten
Clarke claims . . .that in early 2001, when he told President Bush's National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice about al-Qaida, her "facial expression gave me the impression that she had never heard the term before." ...
Isn't that just like a liberal? The chair-warmer describes Bush as a cowboy and Rumsfeld as his gunslinger -- but the black chick is a dummy. Maybe even as dumb as Clarence Thomas! Perhaps someday liberals could map out the relative intelligence of various black government officials for us.
Did Clarke have the vaguest notion of Rice's background and education? Or did he think Dr. Rice was cleaning the Old Executive Office Building at night before the president chose her -- not him-- to be national security adviser?
-- Ann Coulter
Top Ten Other Judgments Dick Clarke Made About Condi Rice Based on Her, errr, Appearance
10. Her favorite literary character? Lando Calrissian from Star Wars
9. That she might express policy disagreements by saying, "Oh no you didn't!," and then dismissively cracking her bubble-gum
8. That the NSC's phones would frequently be jammed as she furiously dialed in to vote for Reuben Studdard on American Idol
7. That she might distractingly "whoop it up" in the War Room, yelling "Shazz-amm
, suckah!" after each successful missile strike
6. That she would create a diplomatic embarrassment by calling a foreign dignitary "Sugah" and then offering him a Seagram's-and-grape-soda
5. That Donald Trump really waited far too long to tell her "You're fired"
4. That, far too frequently, National Security Briefings would degenerate into nothing but yo' mama jokes and gang-signs
3. That her duties as National Security Advisor might be compromised by her outside interests: singin', dancin', and stealing chickens from Old Man Codger's farm
2. That when confronted with a ghost or other supernatural spooky, she would bug her eyes out comically while wailing, "Feets, don't's fails me now!!!," which is an express violation of White House security protocols regarding extradimensional intrusions
...and the Number One Judgment Dick Clarke Made About Condi Rice Based on Her, errr, Appearance...
1. That she only got the NSA job over Clarke because she was a... well, come on, you know
Clarke Could Tell From Condi Rice's "Expression" That She Never Heard of Al Qaeda
Ann Coulter bravely dares to make the point that we chickened out on.
We're skittish about making racism-charges; isn't that what the other guys
Still, think about it: Dick Clarke accused Condi Rice, on the basis of her "facial expression," of having never heard of Al Qaeda.
No white men were similarly accused of such gross incompetency and ignorance, and surely not over something so ridiculous as a facial expression.
Let Ann take it from there:
Clarke claims . . .that in early 2001, when he told President Bush's National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice about al-Qaida, her "facial expression gave me the impression that she had never heard the term before." (If only she used botox like Sen. Kerry!)
Sean Hannity has been playing a radio interview that Dr. Rice gave to David Newman on WJR in Detroit back in October 2000, in which she discusses al-Qaida in great detail. This was months before chair-warmer Clarke claims her "facial expression" indicated she had never heard of the terrorist organization.
By the end of 2000, anyone who read the paper had heard of al-Qaida. It is literally insane to imagine that Condoleezza Rice had not. For Pete's sake, even the New York Times knew about al-Qaida.
Rice had been a political science professor at Stanford University, a member of the Center for International Security and Arms Control, and a senior fellow of the Institute for International Studies. She had written three books and numerous articles on foreign policy. She worked for the first Bush administration in a variety of national security positions.
All this was while Clarke was presiding over six unanswered al-Qaida attacks on American interests and fretting about the looming Y2K emergency. But chair-warmer Clarke claims that on the basis of Rice's "facial expression" he could tell she was not familiar with the term "al-Qaida."
Isn't that just like a liberal? The chair-warmer describes Bush as a cowboy and Rumsfeld as his gunslinger --but the black chick is a dummy. Maybe even as dumb as Clarence Thomas! Perhaps someday liberals could map out the relative intelligence of various black government officials for us.
Did Clarke have the vaguest notion of Rice's background and education? Or did he think Dr. Rice was cleaning the Old Executive Office Building at night before the president chose her -- not him-- to be national security adviser? If a Republican ever claimed the "facial expression" on Maxine Waters --a woman whose face is no stranger to confusion or befuddlement-- left the "impression" that she didn't understand quantum physics, he'd be in prison for committing a hate crime.
Maybe a little too strident, yes. But think about it: Maxine Waters is, objectively, as dumb as a bag of chicken-beaks. We're not supposed to say so, but we all know it's true.
Condi Rice is an academic superstar and expert in international security matters. And yet this jackass accuses her of never having heard of Al Qaeda?
Kerry "Outraged" About Bush WMD Jokes
It was utterly predictable. But, as much as it pains us to say it, he does have, er, a point.
At a press dinner, Bush doplily looked under furniture saying, "I know those WMD's are here somewhere."
Now, Bush may have been attempting a bit of self-deprecating humor. Which is usually a good thing.
But in context, this was utterly stupid. Is any joke so funny that it justifies making light of the main premise for war in Iraq, and the deaths of over 500 Americans, which many people claim was a lie in the first place? Should he be perceived as cavalier or dismissive about this issue?
We don't think so.
No offense, Mr. Bush-- but are you actually retarded
as your critics claim?
Who wrote this joke for you? Did Dick Clarke pen it for you on his way out?
There's a French expression we like: This is worse than a crime. It's a mistake.
Cheap Shot, or Just Simple Reality?
Thanks to ErikSvane
, a Danish-American blogger.
The panel has caused lots of geschreien amongst the liberals and Democrats, recounted on the cartoonist's blog.
You will, we imagine, be positively shocked to learn that liberal Democrats who claim an absolutist position on the First Amendment when it comes to porn and rap songs urging cop-killings complain that the cartoon should have been embargoed and never run at all.
But what about the "chilling" effect on free speech we've heard so very much about? We guess Ari Fleischer was right after all: People do have to "watch what they say" in these parlous times.
Erik's the first person who's written us who has a page on the Internet Movie Data Base.
(As far as we know.)
Now Erik, it just so happens that a couple of us are working on this screenplay, see, and we were thinking...
Had Enough of Clarke? Well, We're Not Quite Done Yet
James Taranto pretty much sums up everything that needs to be said about Clarke in one big link-happy post.
Every point made there is deadly, especially Rich Lowry's catalogue of Bush anti-terrorism efforts that Clarke forgot to mention
in the entirety of his book.
One point of dissent: Taranto claims he doesn't think these lies will hurt Bush's credibility on the subject of terrorism. We've heard this quite a bit from both conservatives and moderates (for example, Mort the Mild Moderate Kondracke).
We think they're quite wrong. The general public doesn't bother to make a firm decision about such charges. They haven't the time for it, nor the political-animal inclination for such in-depth dissections. Rather, they simply acknowledge the charge as partially true, partially false, applying some sort of intuitive discount-rate.
And it surely helps the liberals' case that the liberal media is, as usual, decidedly uninterested in reporting facts that undermine a charge against a Republican, and eat up such charges in a sort of liberal shark-like feeding-frenzy of the sort we've grown all too accustomed.
Bush AWOL, anyone?
And this means, all told, that these charges definitely will hurt Bush to some extent. We figure-- by a significant extent. This may not be a mortal wound, but Bush has been well-bloodied, which is, of course, the whole point of the exercise. Not "getting at truth" -- the media doesn't bother reporting a lot of the "truth" they claim to be so single-minded about "getting at" -- but damaging Bush in the area he's strongest.
Look, we're all for optimism and putting a sunny face on things, but the idea that this won't hurt Bush can be easily disproven by simply examining the amount of conservative ink spent on this nonsense in the past week. If Clarke's ego- and money- motivated lies won't hurt Bush, why are we spending so much time on rebutting them? Let's be honest about the likely impact here. Let's not kid ourselves.
Meanwhile, Jonah Goldberg
has an interesting column about the debate over "motives" in this context. He seems to think that motives are rather irrelevant to political arguments; but he notes that, for the left, questioning an opponent's motives has been the only game in town for at least the past two years.
Another Story the Liberal Media "Forgot" to Cover
Dick Clarke wasn't the only person testifying this week. Of course, he's the most useful
to the liberal media, so he's the only one you've heard much about.
notes that William Cohen also testified, and that his statements seem to undermine the sudden claims of interest in terrorism-fighting by the left:
"First, Cohen noted, for all the 20-20 hindsight now being focused on Al Qaeda, when Bill Clinton actually tried doing something about bin Laden's organization--the August 1998 cruise missile attacks on camps in Afghanistan--there was general anger. Commentators denounced Clinton as a warmonger; editorialists wrung their hands about firing ordnance into a neutral country; opponents said Clinton was engaged in a 'wag the dog' exercise--the movie of that name coming out about the same time.
"Set aside that the 1998 strike against Al Qaeda camps was a letdown from a military standpoint. What should be remembered is that when a president attempted preemptive action against the worst terror threat to the Western world, the response was condemnation--much coming from the lefty types who now taunt George W. Bush by saying he should focus more on bin Laden."
Hat tip: Howard Kurtz.
The Liberal Media Calls It In the Air
One of the comedy bits we most loved as kids was on Bill Cosby's Right!
album. Since the captains of the teams called the coin-toss before a football game-- and, if they won, were able to "call" whether or not they would kick or receive the ball, or which goalposts they would defend -- he wondered if similar coin-tosses were performed before wars, with the captains "calling" various advantages they would have for the battle.
For example, in the Revolutionary War, the Americans won the coin-toss, and made the following "call:" "We call we get to wear camouflaged-clothing and hide behind rocks and trees while we pick you off at a distance, and we call that you have to wear bright red coats and march in a straight line."
For lack of a nail, etc. It's just frightening how much history has turned on the revolutions of a quarter.
Well, the political superbowl is already joined, and we can't help but notice that the liberal media is already "calling" the rules of the game to come. No conservatives were present at the alleged coin-toss -- performed in an undisclosed location in New York City and supervised by Michael Moore, Walter Cronkite, Jeneane Garofalo, Peter Jennings, and, um, Teresa Heinz-- but the liberal media assures us that we lost, fair and square, and that we really ought to take their word for it.
We've had trouble keeping track of it all, but so far, we've identified these "calls" they've made:
* When a Republican seeks to "moderate" his image via rhetoric, the media will constantly call "bullshit" on that rhetoric, noting the Republican's actual voting record. They call they can do so even when the Republican in question has no real voting record on federal hot-button issues, as George Bush didn't in 2000 (having been a Governor, and a somewhat bipartisan one to boot). In these situations, the media will undermine the Republican's moderate rhetoric by mentioning that the candidate is "perceived" as being more right-leaning than he presents himself. Who perceives him such? The media, of course, and they call they are allowed to hide who is doing the perceiving by resorting to the passive voice.
* On the other hand, the liberal media calls that when John Kerry attempts to rhetorically move to the middle, we have to take his words at face-value. They call that it is distasteful to inject real-world voting records into the discussion, and that votes cast a mere one or two years ago are "old news," and that mentioning them may constitute an "assault on John Kerry's patriotism." In short, all moderate-conservatives are "conservative," tending towards extremism, while all liberals are "moderates."
* The media calls that George Bush cannot mention his successes in the War on Terrorism, otherwise he is guilty of "politicizing" a grave and solemn issue.
* The media, however, calls that John Kerry and his surrogates can constantly carp on George Bush's perceived failures
in the War on Terror. This isn't "politicizing" the war; this is just getting important facts out to the public; to suggest that John Kerry should refrain from such attacks would be to "chill" his right to free speech.
* John Kerry, Wesley Clarke, Howard Dean and a hundred other liberal political operatives are allowed to call Bush and his policies "un-American," "un-patriotic," and "not patriotic" without the media so much as noting it. They called it.
* On the other hand, the Republican Party is to be constantly chided and condemned for calling liberals "un-patriotic," even though there is not a single recorded public utterance by George Bush or Dick Cheney to that effect. Again-- they called it.
* The media calls that Republicans fighting for traditionalism in marriage is "divisive," and "politicizing" an important social issue.
* The media also calls that liberals fighting for gay marriage are to be hailed as heroes, latter-day same-sex Rosa Parkses, and that liberals are permitted to insinuate that conservatives are bigoted religious zealots for opposing these efforts. This is not "divisive" nor "politicizing;" this is just "fighting for civil rights and equality."
* 75% of all media accounts of Hillary Clinton's record in the senate must claim that she is a "moderate."
* Any contradiction of this claim, by a factual recitation of her voting record, which is one of the most reliably-partisan and liberal in the Senate, demonstrates conservatives' ongoing "obsession" with this woman, and is perhaps evidence of misogyny.
* 75% of all media accounts of Hillary Clinton must call her "beautiful," which is somehat odd, given that her liberal feminist media support group is constantly lecturing us that a woman's looks ought not be held against her nor counted in her favor.
* But the media also call that no one is allowed to object that Hillary Clinton is, despite her spin-sisters' claims, not "beautiful" at all, at least by any objective standard that requires more evidence for "beauty" than a simple lack of gross physical deformity. To rebut their claims constitutes definite
misogyny and a definite
"obsession" with her.
* The media calls that George Bush's claims of Saddam's WMD must be mentioned every other night on the major-media news broadcasts.
* The media calls that Bill Clinton's precisely-identical claims will never be mentioned at all.
* The media calls that it is allowed to claim that Saddam had "no connections" to terrorism, even though, when pressed, they admit he had lots of connections to non-Al-Qaeda terrorists, and "low-level contacts" with Al Qaeda. They call it is perfectly defensible to constantly "shorthand" the latter into "no connection" with terrorism.
* But they also claim that it is indefensible to "shorthand" Saddam's proveable connections to terrorism as, well, connections to terrorism, as that suggests he may have been involved in 9-11. Liberals are allowed to speak loosely when denigrating his connections to terrorism; conservatives, however, must speak very carefully indeed, else be accused of attempting to "mislead" the public into thinking Saddam's connections are more extensive than they are.
* The media calls that Republcian who criticizes Bush -- or switches parties! -- is to be hailed as a maverick, independent-thinking hero.
* The media also calls that no Democrat who praises Bush -- Ed Koch, Zell Miller -- will be mentioned at all. If a mention is unavoidable, they will be described as "very conservative." In other words-- what did you expect? This is not evidence of "independent-thinking;" it's simply evidence of lock-step conservative extremism.
* It's very, very important that we get to the bottom of what went wrong on 9-11.
* But, for various reasons, an accounting of "what went wrong" must not extend further back that January 25, 2001. This date is selected without reference to political advantage. Yes, it just happens to be the date that George W. Bush was inaugurated; but, more importantly, it was the day Osama bin Ladin was born, grew into adulthood, formed Al Qaeda, and declared war on the US. Yeahp, all in twenty-four hours. He was crazy-busy that day.
Well, that's a short list. We're sure they've called more, and they'll be calling more still as the calendar advances.
Could Pennsylvania Be the Keystone to Bush's Re-election?
Florida looks like it leans Bush, Ohio might just vote Democrat this time around.
But Pennsylvanian seems to be leaning Bush. 21 tasty electoral votes, yum.
The key this election, it seems, will be to win two out of the three swing states of Pennsylvania, Florida, and Ohio. (We're not counting Missouri or Michigan. If Bush loses Missouri or Kerry loses Michigan, it's a blowout, and no one need worry about particular states.)
Oregon Lefties: "Then No Marriage for Anyone!"
We're sure that it's insensitive to use the term "hissy fit" in this context, but what else can you call it when an entire county decides that no further marriages will be permitted until gays are allowed to "marry" too?
Next time Andrew Sullivan whines about being repressed, we'll just note that we're now equally repressed, in Oregon, and yet, get this, this will be the only
post we write whining
Hat tip to Allah Pundit.
Contrary to Clinton's Claims, the US Did Have Charges Pending Against bin Ladin when Clinton Let Him Go
Clinton claims he couldn't have taken bin Ladin as the Sudan offered, because he had "committed no crime" against the US. Newsmax
demonstrates that ain't quite true-- bin Ladin was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the indictments against the 1993 WTC bombers.
That's not a formal charge, but it's a kissing cousin, and it's silly to say that he "committed no crime."
Video: The Palestinians' Newest Contribution to World Progress, the Explosive Retard
The Palestinians apparently won't be happy until they're recognized as the world's first psychopathic culture.
Now here's the tricky part-- how does France go about condemning the Jews for this?
"The Way They... Surround a Story" by Refusing to Report It
Here's something interesting about that devastating background-briefing by the media's latest darling, Dick Clarke.
Five journalists were present at the briefing wherein Dick Clarke contradicted his current version of history. The administration contacted those journalists, informing them that it no longer would hold them to keeping the interview on background (as is their right, as it was the administration which set the ground rules; they're free to change them).
Jim Angle of FoxNews reported the story.
The Black Republican (oh, he's
the one) picks up on a curious, and telling, fact: None of the other four reporters decided to write the story.
The media sure are interested in getting facts to the public, eh? They're just champing at the bit
to report on Dick Clarke's contradictory prior story, aren't they?
How The Black Republican knows this, we don't know. He unfortunately doesn't provide a cite. We trust he'll get around to letting us know from where he got this absolutely dee-licious bon-bon of bias.
Maybe he got it from The
Conservative Who Works at CNN.
Our own dilligent research informs us that Jim Angle mentioned that there were five reporters present on the conference call while responding to Bob Kerrey's partisan attack on FoxNews on the Brit Hume broadcast last night.
There is no cite for the fact that no other reporter present has published the story. But, as The Black Republican points out, you don't need a cite for that; it's proven by the fact that you can't cite a story on this matter by one of those reporters.
Seems Like Bush Has Some Foreign Leaders Backing Him, Too
Oddly enough, one of them is Mohamar Kaddafi's son:
CAIRO, Egypt - The son of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi said Wednesday Arab countries should support President Bush (news - web sites)'s campaign to promote democracy in the Middle East.
Numerous Arab governments have rejected Bush's democracy initiative, notably Egypt's and Saudi Arabia's, as an imposition unsuited to Arab culture and traditions.
"Instead of shouting and criticizing the American initiative, you have to bring democracy to your countries, and then there will be no need to fear America or your people," said Seif al-Islam Gadhafi. "The Arabs should either change or change will be imposed on them from outside."
Seif denied reports that he is a candidate to succeed his father, who rules Libya with little tolerance of opposition.
"Many Arab countries are now following the policy of inheriting the leadership, but there are hundreds of Libyans who are better (suited) than I," Seif said.
Seif even praised Israel, saying that unlike Arab countries, sons do not tend to succeed their fathers in power there.
"We don't put the appropriate person in the right place, but Israel is a democratic country," [he] told the Al-Jazeera television station.
What the f?
What the f'ing f?
Did we just hear right? Did Mohamar Kaddafi's son just praise Bush, call for democracy in the Middle East, and then praise Israel?
It looks like Bush hit Saddam Hussein so goddamned hard he knocked sense into the entire Kaddafi family.
The Dullest Blog in the World
No, we don't mean Oliver Free Willis. We mean this peach of a spoof.
We had very little to say today. Who knew that one could blog so much on so little?
5:48pm: We briefly consider a bit of covert self-abuse over the 55-year-old Guatemalan maid in our office. You know, the one with the big, low-hanging cans. We decide it's just too risky with the boss around, and we content ourselves instead with eating a Zero bar.
Thanks again to RDBrewer at TPW for tipping us.
Could Yassin's Assassination Lead to an Intra-Palestinian Civil War?
Steven den Beste sure hopes so
, and we're quite beyond pretending that we wish peace and happiness upon the murderous Palestinians.
We doubt den Beste is actually correct -- no one gets that lucky, as they say -- but it's an interesting take on the matter.
When the typical ninnies whine that this assassination may "destabilize" the Palestinian's war process -- and that's what it is, a war process conducted on terms favorable to them, not a peace process -- we can only respond, "Fingers crossed!"
UPDATE: A sixteen-year-old would be suicide-bomber stopped in Israel:
The family of the teenager, identified as Hussam Abdo, said he was gullible and easily manipulated.
"He doesn't know anything, and he has the intelligence of a 12 year old," said his brother, Hosni.
So it's come now to using fucking retards to kill people. What a wonderful bunch of people.
Clinton versus Bush on "Dead or Alive"
Taranto nails it:
Remember after Sept. 11 when President Bush said he wanted Osama bin Laden "dead or alive"? Some Americans faulted the president for not being, as we say in 2004, more nuanced. To take an example from our archives, left-wing feminist Patricia Ireland complained in October 2001 that since Sept. 11 there had been too much "guy talk" from "rich, white, able-bodied and apparently straight men." She elaborated: "Guy talk is 'Osama bin Laden, wanted dead or alive.' Guy talk may be speaking in black and white of good and evil."
Guy talk also is straightforward, which can be an advantage when you're dealing with a mortal enemy. Judging by this Bloomberg News report, President Clinton took just the sort of dainty approach to bin Laden that Ireland urged, and the result was confusion and carnage:
"There was a clash between the intentions of administration officials, who said President Bill Clinton clearly approved covert actions to kill bin Laden, and the understanding of top officials in the Central Intelligence Agency, who felt their instructions were to try to capture him, the report says."
Maybe a good compromise would have been to just "rough him up" a little.
Clarke Before the Publisher's Advance
Fuller transcript here:
QUESTION: What is your response to the suggestion in the [Aug. 12, 2002] Time [magazine] article that the Bush administration was unwilling to take on board the suggestions made in the Clinton administration because of animus against the -- general animus against the foreign policy?
CLARKE: I think if there was a general animus that clouded their vision, they might not have kept the same guy dealing with terrorism issue. This is the one issue where the National Security Council leadership decided continuity was important and kept the same guy around, the same team in place. That doesn't sound like animus against uh the previous team to me.
JIM ANGLE: You're saying that the Bush administration did not stop anything that the Clinton administration was doing while it was making these decisions, and by the end of the summer had increased money for covert action five-fold. Is that correct?
CLARKE: All of that's correct.
QUESTION: Are you saying now that there was not only a plan per se, presented by the transition team, but that it was nothing proactive that they had suggested?
CLARKE: Well, what I'm saying is, there are two things presented. One, what the existing strategy had been. And two, a series of issues -- like aiding the Northern Alliance, changing Pakistan policy, changing Uzbek policy -- that they had been unable to come to um, any new conclusions, um, from '98 on.
QUESTION: Was all of that from '98 on or was some of it ...
CLARKE: All of those issues were on the table from '98 on.
ANGLE: When in '98 were those presented?
CLARKE: In October of '98.
QUESTION: In response to the Embassy bombing?
CLARKE: Right, which was in September.
QUESTION: Were all of those issues part of alleged plan that was late December and the Clinton team decided not to pursue because it was too close to...
CLARKE: There was never a plan, Andrea. What there was was these two things: One, a description of the existing strategy, which included a description of the threat. And two, those things which had been looked at over the course of two years, and which were still on the table.
QUESTION: So there was nothing that developed, no documents or no new plan of any sort?
CLARKE: There was no new plan.
QUESTION: No new strategy -- I mean, I don't want to get into a semantics...
CLARKE: Plan, strategy -- there was no, nothing new.
QUESTION: 'Til late December, developing...
CLARKE: What happened at the end of December was that the Clinton administration NSC principals committee met and once again looked at the strategy, and once again looked at the issues that they had brought, decided in the past to add to the strategy. But they did not at that point make any recommendations.
QUESTIONS: Had those issues evolved at all from October of '98 'til December of 2000?
CLARKE: Had they evolved? Um, not appreciably.
ANGLE: What was the problem? Why was it so difficult for the Clinton administration to make decisions on those issues?
CLARKE: Because they were tough issues. You know, take, for example, aiding the Northern Alliance. Um, people in the Northern Alliance had a, sort of bad track record. There were questions about the government, there were questions about drug-running, there was questions about whether or not in fact they would use the additional aid to go after Al Qaeda or not. Uh, and how would you stage a major new push in Uzbekistan or somebody else or Pakistan to cooperate?
One of the big problems was that Pakistan at the time was aiding the other side, was aiding the Taliban. And so, this would put, if we started aiding the Northern Alliance against the Taliban, this would have put us directly in opposition to the Pakistani government. These are not easy decisions.
ANGLE: And none of that really changed until we were attacked and then it was...
CLARKE: No, that's not true. In the spring, the Bush administration changed — began to change Pakistani policy, um, by a dialogue that said we would be willing to lift sanctions. So we began to offer carrots, which made it possible for the Pakistanis, I think, to begin to realize that they could go down another path, which was to join us and to break away from the Taliban. So that's really how it started.
So let's get this straight: Clinton did nothing for eight years, Bush decided on a new policy within his first eight months
And Clarke says that Bush could have done more.
Well, yes, he could have. But it seems he was doing a lot more than Clinton.
Clarke Before the Publisher's Advance: Bush Increased CIA Funding & Decided to Destroy Al Qaeda
Clarke admits on tape Bush Administration decided before 9-11 to increase CIA funding by a factor of five and "eliminate," rather than rollback, Al Qaeda.
No Blogging Today
Sorry, we're very busy helping Richard Clarke prepare for his bullshit testimony.
Be back tomorrow!
What Does "Multilateral" Mean in Historical Terms, Anyway?
Gregory S. sends this tasty nugget our way:
MEET THE PRESS
Sunday, March 21, 2004
SEN. KENNEDY: Yeah, there would probably, probably.
But I can tell you this: There would be a much greater
participation of other countries around the world.
This is laughable, this coalition.
85 percent of all the troops over there now are United
States troops, and 85 percent of the casualties--the
casualties--are American troops.
There's no reason that we can't have other troops from
other nations participate and gradually free American
troops from that responsibility. That would be the
objective, and that would be the aim. I think that
could be achievable.
Multilateral, United Nations Authorized, France
Approved, Foreign Troops in the Korean War:
300,000 - US
39,474 - Foreign
339,474 - Total
New Zealand 1,385
South Africa 826
United Kingdom 14,198
United States 302,483
Numbers don't lie. But liberals do.
Dennis Miller versus Eric Altermann
Hat tip: Keiko's and Shamu's Erotic-Aqautic "Pork-an-Orca" Sexpage.
France -- Yes, That France -- Claims She's Discovered Recent bin Ladin Refuge
From the "news organization" Reuters:
She said in an interview to be published Tuesday that French troops operating near Afghanistan's border with Pakistan had helped trace bin Laden but did not say where, how wide an area she was referring to or whether he was still there.
A ministry spokesman said Alliot-Marie was referring to the discovery of a location where bin Laden was believed to have been "at a certain time" and it was not clear where he was now.
"Our men are well established and know the terrain well. Thanks to certain information, they were recently able to make an effective contribution to locating him," Alliot-Marie told Express magazine in an interview released before publication.
Asked whether the man located was definitely bin Laden, she replied: "Everything leads us to think so."
The evidence discovered at the site is well-nigh conclusive that bin Ladin once lived there -- one "Paris is for Lovers" t-shirt, a cellphone with Jacques Chirac's and Hans Blix's numbers on the speed-dial, a videotape of Inside the Actor's Studio
with Gerard Depardieu, and a bumper-sticker reading "John Kerry: He Doesn't Fall Down."
News You Ain't Gonna See on CBS: No Child Left Behind is Working
Thanks to the Washington Times:
The study by the Council of the Great City Schools reviewed test scores from 61 urban school districts in 37 states. It compared 2002 and 2003 test results.
The council's executive director, Michael Casserly, said the gains in fourth-grade reading were especially impressive.
"It's one of the first signs that the major cities are making substantial headway at the elementary school level in teaching students to read," he said.
The report, being released today, found that 47 percent of the fourth-graders in the study scored at or above proficiency in reading — a gain of almost five percentage points from 2002.
For math, 51 percent of the students tested at or above proficiency, nearly seven percentage points higher than the year before.
For eighth-graders, 37 percent scored at or above proficiency in reading, about one percentage point higher than in 1992. In math, there was a gain of three percentage points, to 39 percent proficiency.
The Weekly Standard on the Liberal Media's Newest Hero
A good read.
With some good questions.
Clarke should answer several questions when he appears before the September 11 Commission this week. Among them:
(1) Is George Tenet wrong about Iraqi support for al Qaeda?
(2) Why did the Clinton administration cite an "understanding" between bin Laden and Iraq in its indictment of bin Laden for the 1998 embassy bombings?
(3) Did Iraq support al Qaeda's efforts to obtain weapons of mass destruction in Sudan?
(4) Clinton administration officials, including Clarke's former boss Sandy Berger, stand by their decision to target al Shifa. Does Clarke?
(5) What did the Clinton administration do to get the Iraqis to turn over Abdul Rahman Yasin, the Iraqi harbored by the regime after mixing the chemicals for the 1993 World Trade Center attacks?
The Color of Appeasement
Check out the brand-new color-coded Appeasement Threat Level system at BostonIrish.
And, while you're there, check out this post.
Should Kerry really be shaking hands with a Sinn Fein leader while we're conducting a worldwide war on terrorism with our greatest ally, the UK?
How Out-Of-It Is Walter Cronkite?
He's so out-of-it he's urging John Kerry to admit the obvious and proudly proclaim he is in fact a liberal:
And your long and distinguished service in the Senate has no doubt led to genuine changes in some positions. But the denial that you are a liberal is almost impossible to reconcile.
When the National Journal said your Senate record makes you one of the most liberal members of the Senate, you called that "a laughable characterization" and "the most ridiculous thing I've ever seen in my life." Wow! Liberals, who make up a substantial portion of the Democratic Party and a significant portion of the independent vote, are entitled to ask, "What gives?"
It isn't just the National Journal that has branded you as a liberal. So has the liberal lobbying group Americans for Democratic Action. Senator, check your own website. It says you are for rolling back tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, for tax credits to both save and create jobs, for real investment in our schools. You've voted, in the words of your own campaign, for "every major piece of civil rights legislation to come before Congress since 1985, as well as the Equal Rights Amendment." You count yourself (and are considered by others) a leader on environmental protection issues.
You are committed to saving Medicare and Social Security, and you are an internationalist in foreign policy.
What are you ashamed of? Are you afflicted with the Dukakis syndrome - that loss of nerve that has allowed conservatives both to define and to demonize liberalism for the past decade and more?
But by ducking the issue, Dukakis opened the way for the far right to make "L" for liberal a scarlet letter with which to brand all who oppose them. In the course of that 1988 exchange, Bush offered a telling observation, saying, in effect, that liberals don't like being called liberal. You seem to have reaffirmed that analysis.
If 1988 taught us anything, it is that a candidate who lacks the courage of his convictions cannot hope to convince the nation that he should be given its leadership. So, senator, some detailed explanations are in order if you hope to have any chance of defeating even a wounded George II in November. You cannot let the Bush league define you or the issues. You have to do that yourself. Take my advice and lay it all out, before it's too late.
Walter Cronkite is one of those goofball liberals who believe the message of The West Wing
, which is that the American people are just craving real liberalism, and will gladly elect a gutsy liberal who has the courage to speak his real mind.
Not even the leftist-activist base of the Democratic Party believes this. They had their chance to test this thesis by nominating Howard Dean as their candidate, and they blinked.
Lieberman defends Bush against Clarke's silly-season charges
"The charge, if I hear it correctly, that Dick Clarke has made, that the Bush administration was more focused on Iraq in the days after September 11th, than on September 11th and getting back at the terrorists, I see no basis for it," Lieberman told "Fox News Sunday."
The former Democratic presidential candidate suggested that Clarke's allegations were driven by election year politics, prompting him to warn, "There is a higher interest than our partisan interest in victory and that is the national interest in victory over terrorism. "
The press seemed awfully impressed by McCain's defense of Kerry's national-security credentials. They thought he was a real independent-thinking maverick interested only in truth-telling.
We're sure Lieberman's remarks will receive the same prominent reportage, and that he too will be hailed as a truth-telling maverick.
Israel Kills Hamas Leader Yassin
Israel had previously avoided killing this thug, so as not to "upset" the terrorists.
"Words cannot describe the emotion of anger and hate inside our hearts," said Hamas official Ismail Haniyeh, a close associate of Yassin in Gaza.
As opposed to... what? The great friendship and amity you murders showed towards the Israelis previously?
We've said it before. We'll say it again. The Hateful Muslim Types want to fight an odd sort of "war" under terms that favor them. Basically, they claim the right to kill whomever they like, and then whine "we just want peace" when their victims counterattack.
It's about time that we let them know that we're not interested in fighting that sort of war.
A New Political Bumper-Sticker for John Kerry?
It's a good one.
"Bush Knew!": Ho, Hum
The nation shocked as yet another liberal political operative accuses Bush of dereliction of duty.
You know, there are hundreds of anti-terrorist, anti-Saddam national security experts who support Bush's actions. The media, however, always discounts these as ideological extremists.
Apparently an expert is only an expert when he parrots the non-expert gut feelings of the Washington press corps.
So, Richard Clarke claims that he was just a bear on Al Qaeda and wanted desperately to meet with Bush to bring this unknown threat to his attention. And what did he brief Bush on when he got his meeting?
Clarke said he eventually got to address a Cabinet meeting on terrorism months after his initial request, and only a week before the attacks.
Bartlett said Clarke used the opportunity "to talk about cyber-security."
A-ha! So Clarke was really pushing the panic-button on Al-Qaeda. It just so happens that, when given the opportunity to alert the president to this unknown threat, he wanted to talk about computer viruses.
More on Dick Clarke's obsession with computer hacking.
And there's this question, which we think is a pretty good one:
The press is abuzz with reports that former Clinton staffers are set to testify before the September 11 commission next week that "they repeatedly warned their Bush administration counterparts in late 2000 that Al Qaeda posed the worst security threat facing the nation — and how the new administration was slow to act." The Clinton officials expected to so testify include Sandy Berger, Madeline Albright and Richard Clarke.
Where to begin: the mind boggles at such shamelessness. To state the obvious, in late 2000 the Clinton administration was STILL IN OFFICE. If there were steps that needed to be taken immediately to counter the al Qaeda threat, as they "bluntly" told President Bush's transition team, why didn't they take those steps themselves?
Apparently the Clinton administration, as usual, wants credit for "tough" anti-terrorism rhetoric while taking no action whatsoever against Al Qaeda.
Do as we say
on terrorism, not as we do
. Or don't do, as it turns out.
Richard Clarke is the four-hundred fifty-third liberal political hack to accuse President Bush of causing/allowing 9-11 since Bush declared an end to major combat operations in Iraq on May 3rd.
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