Monday, September 25, 2006

... And 2+2=4, Big Surprise

The war in Iraq has become a primary recruitment vehicle for violent Islamic extremists, motivating a new generation of potential terrorists around the world whose numbers may be increasing faster than the United States and its allies can reduce the threat, U.S. intelligence analysts have concluded.

A 30-page National Intelligence Estimate completed in April cites the "centrality" of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, and the insurgency that has followed, as the leading inspiration for new Islamic extremist networks and cells that are united by little more than an anti-Western agenda. It concludes that, rather than contributing to eventual victory in the global counterterrorism struggle, the situation in Iraq has worsened the U.S. position, according to officials familiar with the classified document.

"It's a very candid assessment," one intelligence official said Saturday of the estimate, the first formal examination of global terrorist trends written by the National Intelligence Council since the March 2003 invasion. "It's stating the obvious."

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Ex-military Officers Criticize Rumsfeld

Retired military officers on Monday bluntly accused Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld of bungling the war in Iraq, saying U.S. troops were sent to fight without the best equipment and that critical facts were hidden from the public.

"I believe that Secretary Rumsfeld and others in the administration did not tell the American people the truth for fear of losing support for the war in Iraq," retired Maj. Gen. John R. S. Batiste said in remarks prepared for a forum conducted by Senate Democrats.

A second military leader, retired Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton, assessed Rumsfeld as "incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically."

"Mr. Rumsfeld and his immediate team must be replaced or we will see two more years of extraordinarily bad decision-making," Eaton added in a statement prepared for the policy forum, held six weeks before the Nov. 7 midterm elections, in which the war is a central issue.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2006

October Surprise List

If Sean Hannity says the that the Repugs are in trouble for Nov 7 beacuse he is afraid that they will stay home and not vote, you can bet that the elephant's election war machine is starting to move. Since they won't be capable of doing anything morally or intellectually acceptable (thank you Mr. Rumsfeld for those insightful words) - and nobody will be able stand Mr. Bush's daily speeches on Facism for two months - that still leaves an almost limitless number of possibilities to forestall the end of the neocons.

Let's see, what could a neocon/rove talking points list look like, listing possible alternatives for an October surprise? Your job is to figure out which of these are tongue-in cheek:

1. Force Mr. Cheney to retire for 'health reasons.' Pick John McCain or Condi Rice as the new VP.
2. Bring back John Ashcroft to be in charge of personally issuing daily changes in the Homeland Security alert status (hmm, what color is above 'red'?).
3. Arrest Jimmy Carter and send him to Guantanimo for causing the current crisis in the Middle East.
4. Arrest Bill Clinton for the same thing.
5. Fire Tony Snow and bring in Rush Limbaugh as press secretary.
6. Set off fireworks in several major cities, preferably on the West or East coasts (blue states), and claim we are under attack.
7. Assume presidential powers to jail any Democrat in Congress.
8. Issue a no-bid contract to Diebold to ensure we have a one party election.
9. Go to Pakistan and ask Bin Laden (currently on vacation there) if he would please give himself up - or at least to issue video tapes more often so that there will be enough material to quote for news conferences.

So, you don't agree with any of these? What would you add to the list?

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Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Moral & Intellectual Confusion Reign at the Top, Not In the Critics of the Administration

Edward R. Murrow Revisited
“We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty” (Murrow) said in 1954, “We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men, not from men who fear to write, to speak, to associate and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular. And so, goodnight and good luck.”

Copy: Content and programming copyright 2006 MSNBC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Transcription Copyright 2006 Voxant, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Read Keith Olbermann's comments from last Wednesday night here - scroll to the bottom of the transcript.

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