18 posts tagged with Iraq by Ignatius J. Reilly.
Displaying 1 through 18 of 18.
Video Seems to Show Beheading of American in response to the Abu Ghraib torture photos. I wonder if Sen. James Inhofe will continue to be "more outraged by the outrage than we are by the treatment." [more inside, via kos]
Modern Mercenaries on the Iraqi Frontier In his own way, Stevie is a modern soldier-of-fortune, paid by a private security firm to lead a 44-man unit that is protecting American officials in charge of rebuilding the infrastructure of Iraq. He left his native Glasgow, Scotland, to join the British army at 16, served for 24 years in conflicts around the globe, about half that time as a member of the special forces. In the shadowy tradition of his trade, he asked that only his first name be used and declined to say much about the wars he has fought. "That is one topic I'd rather not talk about," he said in his rich brogue, speaking by phone from the Baghdad villa run by Kroll Inc., the company that employs him. Some bloggers have gotten in trouble of late for using the M-word, but now a wider conversation on Kroll, Blackwater, and friends seems to be emerging. Is the presence of mercenaries --both nationals of coalition countries and foreign nationals-- in Iraq part of Rumsfeld's broader transformation policy? Is their presence in Iraq even legal in the first place?
With Ahmed Chalabi poised to take control of post-occupation Iraq--one year after the start of the war--Congress' General Accounting Office is beginning to ask questions about the operations of his Iraqi National Congress. A piece of evidence submitted by Chalabi was a list of 108 news items which were placed in mainstream media by INC-coordinated (and Pentagon-funded) defectors. Who are other Mefites' favorite fraudsters?
Iraq on the Record A full compilation of the Bush administration's misleading statements on Iraq was comissioned by rep. Henry Waxman. It is now available as a pdf report and as a database searchable by name of speaker or keyword. Did this sort of framework for accountability exist before the Web, and can it be effective now?
Halliburton Gets $222 Million Worth of New Business in Iraq Not a bad haul, considering their tough week.
Wrong moves, right moves As the occupation of Iraq starts to look more like Lebanon, the Illinois contrasts the fallacious tragedy of forging a police force from infantry, and contrasts that with the MP's from the 223rd. The infantry is trained for full-scale war. Infantry soldiers are taught to meet any force, or any threat of force, with overwhelming counter-force. This mindset wins wars, as proved by the rapid defeat of the Iraqi military during the April invasion. But it poses a huge problem during post-war peacekeeping, as demonstrated in Fallujah on September 12--and in late April, when the infantry fired on a large crowd of unarmed protestors in Fallujah, killing 13. more inside...
So, how to explain the incorrect allegations about Iraqi WMD? Lies? Self-interest? Ideology? Clerical error?
James Webb, former Secretary of the Navy: "I am very troubled by the fact that we went into Iraq and very troubled about how we're going to get out of Iraq.'' Recently ousted Army Secretary Thomas E. White, in his new book/Iraq blueprint concurs: "Clearly the view that the war to `liberate' Iraq would instantly produce a pro-United States citizenry ready for economic and political rebirth ignored the harsh realities on the ground." Is the rift between military and civillian leadership in the Pentagon growing?
$20,000 bonus to official who agreed on nuke claim A former Energy Department intelligence chief who agreed with the White House claim that Iraq had reconstituted its defunct nuclear-arms program was awarded a total of $20,500 in bonuses during the build-up to the war, WorldNetDaily has learned...His officers argued at a pre-briefing at Energy headquarters that there was no hard evidence to support the alarming Iraq nuclear charge, and asked to join State Department's dissenting opinion, Energy officials say. Rider ordered them to "shut up and sit down," according to sources familiar with the meeting.
Insiders suggest Condoleezza Rice could leave As White House officials try to control the latest fallout over President Bush's flawed suggestion in the State of the Union address that Iraq was buying nuclear bomb materials, there's growing talk by insiders that National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice may take the blame and resign.
GOP Warns TV Stations Not to Air Ad Alleging Bush Mislead the Nation Over Iraq They claim that the ad itself is dishonest, and cite the obligation of broadcast outlets to be free of misleading information. “Such obligations must be taken seriously. This letter puts you on notice that the information contained in the above-cited advertisement is false and misleading; therefore, you are obligated to refrain from airing this advertisement.” Despite the implicit threats, only one station has refused to run the ad, a Fox station.
Rumsfeld's personal spy ring The defense secretary couldn't count on the CIA or the State Department to provide a pretext for war in Iraq. So he created a new agency that would tell him what he wanted to hear. Today, Salon also looks into the role played by John Bolton. Is investigative journalism now just relegated to the web? [you have to look at an ad, I believe]
White House admits fudging Niger documents. The administration today admitted that forged evidence of Iraq's attempts to buy nuclear material should not have been presented as valid. This came about as a result of an atypically harsh period of questioning from the press following the publication of this editorial over the weekend... [more inside]
Turning the tanks on the reporters The Observer's Phillip Knightley writes that Iraq will go down as the war when journalists seemed to become a target. Predicted here, discussed "in progress" here. The BBC, Al-Jazeera, and the US Committee to Protect Journalists thought it prudent to find out from the Pentagon what steps they could take to protect their correspondents if war came to Iraq... All three organisations concluded that the Pentagon was determined to deter western correspondents from reporting any war from the 'enemy' side; would view such journalism in Iraq as activity of 'military significance', and might well bomb the area.
At first, it appeared that the effort to begin a public probe into the manipulation of intelligence that formed the foundation of the case for the Iraq war was shaking out as bipartisan, with John Warner, and eventually John McCain on board. Each day we would hear of another Senator or Representative pushing harder for an open review of exactly who pulled which string. It only took a few minutes this morning for all of that momentum to cease to exist. ...
Rep. Henry Waxman has written an (extensively footntoed and juicy) open letter to President Bush demanding answers about "misrepresenting evidence" against Iraq. Waxman is unique among an ever-growing numer of pitchfork-wielders as a Congressman who had supported the war. He wrote of the use of forged evidence about alleged nuclear transactions between Niger and Iraq:
Intelligence expert does new kind of spin (as in the 180 degree kind). Intelligence expert (and former National Security Advisor) Kenneth Pollack appeared on NPR [scroll to 3rd entry for full audio] to retract statements that he made on the same show in November. Pollack seems to be the first major wonk to call change his mind not on a single, tangible intelligence claim, but on the broader rationale for war in Iraq, and on the reliability of American intelligence in general.
Excessive Democracy? Faree Zakaria, editor of Newseek International, has written a new book challenging perceptions of the relationship between democracy and constitutional liberalism. This lesson is meant to be applied at home as well as abroad. He has been a hot topic of late. Beyond the narrower scope of Iraq, is there anything to his underlying idea that : (more inside)