On the day we moved our phone service and cable TV services were transfered. The cable TV had some cabling issues and Time Warner came out three times to fix the problem. Meanwhile, our ISP was trying to get our DSL service transfered. They kept running into road blocks at AT&T. My wife tried working from her end. She got nowhere. The last straw came, after two weeks of trying, when an AT&T service rep hung up on her.
So, we reluctantly switched from our ISP of 12 years standing to Time Warner’s cable broadband service. The serviceman came the next day and we were up and running. The phone service will be switched within a couple of weeks.
Ain’t competition great. If AT&T can’t satisfy its customer, someone else will.
Blogging will resume when we’ve finished unpacking.
We just moved to a new condo. Waiting for our DSL connection to be restored.
Kimberley Kagan, in the WSJ, writes:
In Washington perception is often mistaken for reality. And as Congress prepares for a fresh debate on Iraq, the perception many members have is that the new strategy has already failed.
This isn’t an accurate reflection of what is happening on the ground, as I saw during my visit to Iraq in May. Reports from the field show that remarkable progress is being made. Violence in Baghdad and Anbar Province is down dramatically, grassroots political movements have begun in the Sunni Arab community, and American and Iraqi forces are clearing al Qaeda fighters and Shiite militias out of long-established bases around the country.
This is remarkable because the military operation that is making these changes possible only began in full strength on June 15. To say that the surge is failing is absurd. Instead Congress should be asking this question: Can the current progress continue?
Kagan may have it exactly backwards. The Democrats are asking “Can the current progress be stopped?”. The last thing the Democrats want is for Bush to snatch victory in Iraq in the lead-up to the 2008 election. The Democrats/MSM have worked assiduously to depict the war in Iraq as a failure. All this work, in preparation for the 2008 election, will come to naught, if the public sees that the surge has succeeded.
The death of the comprehensive immigration bill was a shock to Washington. Time to remind them that the people will hold them to account if we pull out of Iraq and leave behind a disaster. What might that look like? The Sunni triangle taken over by Al Qaeda? The Shi’ite regions taken over by Iran’s terrorist proxies? Turkey invading Kurdistan, the one real success in Iraq, confident that US will be impotent to stop a little more Muslim-on-Muslim ethnic cleansing?
Pelosi and Reid want to own that disaster? Why would the likes of Hagel, Voinovich, Lugar and Domenici want to join them? Write and call these Senators to let them know that defeat in Iraq is not an option.
Mark Steyn provides this stunning statistic:
Some 40% of Britain’s practicing doctors were trained overseas — and that percentage will increase, as older native doctors retire and younger immigrant doctors take their place: According to the BBC, “Over two-thirds of doctors registering to practise in the U.K. in 2003 were from overseas — the vast majority from non-European countries.”
“Overseas” encompasses the countries of the Middle East, Pakistan and India. Many of the doctors from these countries would be Muslims.
Maybe this explain why the Lancet, once a prestigious British medical journal, published a bogus study of civilian deaths in Iraq; it had to appeal to a new audience. Perhaps some of the Jihadist doctors used the Lancet study to justify their attempts to commit mass-murder in London and Glasgow.
I think I’m going to rename the GWOT the “War on Resurgent Islam”.
Back in its heyday Islam was surging across the world. From Arabia it conquered the Middle East, North Africa, India, parts of the Far East, and parts of Europe. That was Jihad at its finest. The world trembled before the Muslim hordes as they slaughtered their way across most of the known world. Those are the glory days our present day Jihadists want to recapture.
By word and deed, a significant proportion of the Muslim world is at war with the non-Muslim world. From our haughty perspective, their cause looks hopeless. Our stockpile of nuclear weapons and our modern-day armed forces could destroy the Islamic world in a few days.
But that situation will not last forever. Iran has an active nuclear weapons program. Unstable Pakistan already has nuclear weapons. Muslims have infiltrated Europe and are undermining it from within. Within a generation, European Muslims will wield the force of Democracy against old Europe and win. France’s “force de frappe” may well end up under Muslim control.
The most important front in the War on Resurgent Islam is Iraq. If we lose there, we will face larger battles closer to home. Maybe not in the next election cycle but certainly within a generation. Our enemies take the long view. They intend to continue the global Jihad that has been raging since the birth of Islam. They will stop only when we are all converted to Islam, enslaved in Dhimmitude, or dead. The only other option is to beat Resurgent Islam into complete submission to our will.
1. Joe Wilson
A serial liar who started the whole kerfuffle. Watchblog documents his many lies:
Joe Wilson claimed that VP Cheney and CIA director Tenent both recommended him for the trip. It was a lie. He said his wife did not recommend him for the trip. It was a lie. He said that there was absolutely no evidence that Saddam ever even attempted, asked, or thought about buying yellowcake in Niger. It was a lie. He claimed that the documents were clearly forgeries because the names and dates were wrong. It was a lie because he never saw the documents, and US officials didn’t receive them until eight months after his trip to Niger.
2. Valerie Plame
The Raw Story reports:
During last week’s hearing with Lurita A. Doan, the Administrator of the General Services Administration, who was found to have violated the Hatch Act by politicking in a federal workplace, Davis attempted to refocus the session on Plame’s testimony.
“Valerie Plame Wilson’s sworn statements to this committee are irreconcilably inconsistent with her statements to the CIA inspector general and the Senate Intelligence Committee,” he said in last Wednesday’s hearing. “I would move the committee direct the chairman to issue a subpoena to Valerie Plame Wilson….She should be summoned to appear before this committee and address the irregularities in her sworn testimony.”
Byron York at NRO has much more on Plame’s inconsistency. Plame testified:
As she was telling me what had just happened, someone passed by, another officer heard this. He knew that Joe had already — my husband — had already gone on some CIA missions previously to deal with other nuclear matters. And he suggested, ‘Well, why don’t we send Joe?’” That, Mrs. Wilson testified, was the beginning of her husband’s mission to Africa.
The unnamed officer walking by ranks with “the dog ate my homework”.
3. Patrick Fitzgerald
In his press press conference indicting Libby, Fitzgerald twice claimed that Libby was the first to leak Plame’s identity. He did that in the full knowledge that Richard Armitage was the person who leaked Plame’s identity to Novak. The public perception, perpetuated by the MSM, is that Libby was guilty of leaking Plame’s identity. Fitzgerald lied to get that ball rolling and has done nothing to stop it. For a fascinating to-and-fro on Fitzgerald’s conduct, check out this thread at BeldarBlog. Here’s one commenter, who has obviously followed the case closely, unloading on Fitzgerald:
While I respect your expertise in legal matters, I find I must strongly disagree with you from a layman’s perspective (which is the only one from which I can analyze events.) I strongly believe that Fitzgerald is at least as repugnant as Nifong, on a moral and ethical basis if not a legal one.
I’m prepared to admit that Fitzgerald’s actions, assuming that his appointment was legitimate one — which I doubt based on the challenge to it, were LEGAL. Whether or not they were “just,” moral, or ethical is another matter.
It has always been my belief that prosecutors were supposed to be more interested in achieving justice than in obtaining convictions, and that an important part of a prosecutor’s duty to the citizenry he serves was to know when NOT to indict.
When Fitzgerald was appointed, the action was presented to the public as an investigation into whether there had been an improper leak of the identity of a covert agent, and to determine the source of that leak and punish it as legal and appropriate. There was an underlying theme often reported in the press that it was to determine “if the White House had improperly attacked ‘noble Joe Wilson, the whistle blower.'”
When Fitzgerald accepted his appointment it was already know that Armitage, not a member of the White House staff, was the “leaker.” In spite of this, Fitzgerald continued with his investigation. What was he investigating?
Even if the FBI already questioned Libby’s story, in what way was his statement MATERIAL to an on-going investigation. The “leaker” had been identified, and apparently had not committed a crime.
It seems that he wanted to find a “conspiracy” in the White House to discredit Wilson the Whistle Blower. What was the law that such a conspiracy would have violated? So long as the actions undertaken were legal, there would be no crime, but Fitzgerald, apparently, wanted to find it and punish it.
While Fitzgerald carefully avoided addressing the issue of whether or not an illegal leak of classified material, in violation of the “IPPA.” had taken place during the bulk of the trial, it is important to note that he did NOT charge Richard Armitage with any crime. IF the release of the identity of Wilson’s wife was such a critical, illegal and reprehensible event, why was Armitage not charged?
Throughout the investigation, Fitzgerald repeatedly did not pursue leads that might have discredited his theory that the White House was up to something nefarious. He was willing to jail Judy Miller to get her to testify, but he also agreed to not pursue the identity of the other sources that appeared to be referenced in her notes.
He did not interrogate the reporter who had alleged that “one highly placed White House Official had assigned two Administration flunkies to call six reporters to discredit Joe Wilson” (yes, I’m paraphrasing here, but I’m referring to the infamous “1x2x6 theory.”)
I believe that he was engaged in a “perjury trap” to get some one in the Administration to “turn” so that he could get the “big shot” who was behind this “sinister conspiracy” even though such a conspiracy, had it exited, would have been legal. Such tactics are repugnant. They represent, to me at least, an attempt to punish some one for doing something that “should be illegal” — in the opinion of prosecutor.
Ultimately, Scooter Libby has been convicted of perjury because his story does not match the story of a reporter, Russert. I’m biased, but I’d tend to believe almost any honest working American before I’d believe a reporter.
Perhaps, indeed, Scooter Libby did lie. It seems a harmless one to me. Where is the “materiality” of it? What CRIME did it cover up? Fitzgerald ALREADY knew who the leaker was.
Fitzgerald’s trial tactics continued the pattern. After resisting all attempts to try the “big case” he waited until his final “rebuttal” to introduce claims that Libby had done serious harm to national security, and to imply that he’d obstructed the detection of a sinister conspiracy in the White House. He did this at a point in the trial when it was impossible for the defense to properly challenge his claims. He introduced as facts things that had NOT been proven it court.
I find that approach worthy of the gestapo and not of what an American Prosecutor is supposed to do.
Scooter Libby is to serve 30 months for not having the same memory as a reporter. The person who actually committed the “horrible crime of outing a covert agent,” Richard Armitage is not even charged with a misdemeanor. This is JUSTICE?
No, it is not. It is the action of an arrogant prosecutor who feels that he gets to decide what the law should be.
What Fitzgerald has done may well be legal, but it is not just or moral. The man has abused his position. I feel about him as a do about a corrupt cop.
I hope this explains my position in a reasonably coherent manner.
(Minor typos corrected)
Then we have the real leaker, Richard Armitage. He didn’t lie, but he did obstruct justice. Fitzgerald ignored Armitage. One can’t help thinking that was because Armitage did not work at the White House. From another comment on the BeldarBlog thread:
In fact, Armitage’s actions were much more detrimental to the “leak” investigation (given that they hid Armitage’s true role as the “first leaker”) and bordered on witness tampering (by discussing the case with Marc Grossman before Grossman’s first FBI interview and having a friend call Novak to remind him that Armitage’s “leak” was inadvertant). Yet, for all his misdeads, Mr. Armitage has barely had to pay for legal counsel since this whole thing began, let alone defend himself in front of a jury for lying to the FBI, obstructing justice, witness tampering, and purjury.
As I noted previously, Armitage left Libby to hang when a simple public confession would have aborted the whole charade.
The only way for Libby to regain his good name is by going through the appeal process and winning.