Archive for April, 2007

Hitchens on Tenet

Monday, April 30th, 2007

George Tenet was in the Clinton administration, and he was in the Bush administration. And now he’s selling his book.

But Hitchens has the skinny: A Loser’s History: George Tenet’s sniveling, self-justifying new book is a disgrace

Notice the direct quotes that make it clear who is the author of this brilliant insight. And then pause for a second. The author is almost the only man who could have known of Zacarias Moussaoui and his co-conspirators—the very man who positively knew they were among us, in flight schools, and then decided to leave them alone. In his latest effusion, he writes: “I do know one thing in my gut. Al-Qaeda is here and waiting.” Well, we all know that much by now. But Tenet is one of the few who knew it then, and not just in his “gut” but in his small brain, and who left us all under open skies.

Read it all.

From Roger L. Simon‘s comments, former intelligence officers ask for Tenet’s to return his Medal of Freedom.

Time to dismantle the CIA? Update For now, Scrappleface dismantles Tenet. Cassandra, however, says it best,

I can forgive Bill Clinton, Sandy Berger, and Richard Clarke for failing to kill Osama bin Laden, for weighing the risks and benefits differently than I do, or even did. I can forgive them for not singling out one Presidential Daily Briefing entitled “Bin Ladin Preparing to Hijack US Aircraft and Other Attacks”, even though on his watch the World Trade Center had already been attacked, and acting to remove the threat.

What I cannot forgive is the lying and historical revisionism of Bill Clinton and his Clinton-era holdovers who contradict their own past statements in a transparent attempt to shift the blame from an administration which had EIGHT YEARS to do something about al Qaeda and numerous opportunities to kill Osama bin Laden to an incoming administration which, during a time of transition following a contested election, only had EIGHT MONTHS and, according to the head of the CIA’s bin Laden unit, no opportunities to kill Osama bin Laden.

For your listening pleasure:

Monday, April 30th, 2007

My podcast starts at noon EDT, in less than 1/2 hour. Update I talked about my days in Real Estate, back in the late 1980s.

And then at 1PM, Siggy will be a guest of the BBC’s World Have Your Say program. You can listen live here. Siggy fans around the world rejoice.

Two great posts from Friends I Haven’t Met Yet

Monday, April 30th, 2007

Here are recent posts from two of the best bloggers around:
Statistics 101 from Scheiss Weekly, where Mamacita’s homework assignment to her college students was,

Topic: “The Perfect Spouse/Partner”

Each of 56 students (ages 18-64) (average age: 36) (31 women, 25 men) made a list of the top 12 attributes of the perfect spouse/partner. Here are the results, averaged, and ranked in order of importance.

Over at Eternity Road, yesterday Francis Porretto posted one of his excellent Sunday Ruminations, Intimacy, Inference, and Identity

My main point here is that each of us has an identity to himself based on incomplete knowledge or comprehension. Such a reflexive identity — the psychological term for it is “self-concept” — is composed partly of fiction far more often than not. The fiction helps us to paper over those flaws and shortcomings in ourselves we can’t bear to face.

Empirical substantiation is easily available. Virtually everyone believes himself to be above average in most of the measures that people prize. It’s so easy to evade objective assessment of oneself that nearly everyone believes himself to be more moral than average, more congenial than average, smarter than average, a better athlete than average, and (of course) a better driver than average. That’s not possible even in Lake Wobegon, but study after study indicates that it’s the way we view ourselves — consciously.

Why? Because we need to have a good opinion of ourselves if we’re going to face others, and the challenges of life, with any confidence. Apparently, a “good opinion of oneself” seems to demand the belief that others aren’t quite as good in the ways that “matter.” In other words, we deceive ourselves about our failings because in this instance, deception, by making our self-concepts palatable, improves our survival prospects. In other words, it enhances our security.

Read both – and bookmark their blogs.

Update Make that three posts from Friends I Haven’t Met Yet – St. Catherine and Manly Men

Catherine was a woman who was all that she was born to be. She advocated that in everyone and said, “If you are what you should be, you will set the world on fire,” so it makes sense that she would like manly men who had not lost their birth-gifts to fear of the world’s regard.

If you are not being what and who you were born to be, you’re going through life unfulfilled – and the world is missing whatever it was you were supposed to contribute.


Don’t forget to listen to today’s podcast at noon.

More blogging later.

Introducing: DragonPig

Monday, April 30th, 2007

Yes, it’s DragonPig, who, disguised as Pig Kent, mild-mannered pig from a great metropolitan area,

is also a fire-breathing counterJihadist,

fighting a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way!

In other pig news…

(And yes, it was hard to hold the fiery DragonPig in a way such that you can still tell what it is.)

Let the snark flow

Sunday, April 29th, 2007

I should be at the gym right now, but would rather stall, so there – a little Sunday morning snark:

For the first time in American history a high-ranking State Department official caroused with prostitutes. Unfortunately for him, he’s not a Democrat, and the prostitutes are not male.

Show the Dem Cong your support.

Teach your children well.

Somebody tell that woman to shut up. Her fake drawl alone would be enough give Kramer seizures.

I bet his neighbors are starting to get worried.

Israel did’t make it to Nassau Hall yesterday.

The NYT’s idea is to keep telling the Iraqis the NYT doesn’t believe they’re worth the trouble. Maybe they should hire Omar to explain it to them.

Since Fidel’s always been reluctant to speak for himself, now Evo’s telling us Fidel will be back on Tuesday, but I rather rent the video instead.

Via Pajamas Media,

Dr Sanity has the Carnival,


If you know anyone undergoing chemotherapy…

Sunday, April 29th, 2007

please insist that they read this article, Chemotherapy Fog Is No Longer Ignored as Illusion

Once, women complaining of a constellation of symptoms after undergoing chemotherapy – including short-term memory loss, an inability to concentrate, difficulty retrieving words, trouble with multitasking and an overarching sense that they had lost their mental edge – were often sent home with a patronizing “There, there.”

But attitudes are changing as a result of a flurry of research and new attention to the after-effects of life-saving treatment. There is now widespread acknowledgment that patients with cognitive symptoms are not imagining things, and a growing number of oncologists are rushing to offer remedies, including stimulants commonly used for attention-deficit disorder and acupuncture.

“Until recently, oncologists would discount it, trivialize it, make patients feel it was all in their heads,” said Dr. Daniel Silverman, a cancer researcher at the University of California, Los Angeles, who studies the cognitive side effects of chemotherapy. “Now there’s enough literature, even if it’s controversial, that not mentioning it as a possibility is either ignorant or an evasion of professional duty.”

Read the rest.

Saturday afternoon Ray

Saturday, April 28th, 2007

Ray’s on TV, and here’s a YouTube for you,

"Off with their breasts!"

Saturday, April 28th, 2007

Continuing on the police action in Iran trying to force all women into BMOs, the BBC reports that the the crackdown includes young men, too:

Young men are being cautioned for wearing short sleeved shirts or for their hairstyles.

The women continue to be relentlessly harrassed.

And now comes the really misogynistic and truly bizarre part,

One shopkeeper selling evening dresses told us the moral police had ordered him to saw off the breasts of his mannequins because they were too revealing.

He said he wasn’t the only shop to receive this strange instruction.

The shopkeeper “sawed off the breasts of the mannequins on his window display and covered them with sticky tape”, at the insistence of the police, and the BBC has a video.

Makes one wonder what the Sanity Squad would say, doesn’t it?

Here are more photos on the fashion crackdown.

Meanwhile, over at Gateway PunditBanned In Iran… A Helpful Guide For Prisoners of the Regime

Cross-posted at MNM and DNN
Update: 1001 Nights

Update, Sunday 29 April Welcome, readers from The Corner. I agree 100% with Michael Ledeen

Yes, they really are crazy. And sick. And they’re after us. Somebody tell the secretary of state, please.

While you are here, you might want to listen to my podcasts. Please visit often.

Update, Monday 30 April: Welcome, Michelle Malkin readers. Please visit often. Michelle correctly points out,

Activists say that while world attention has focused on the West’s standoff with Iran over its nuclear program, the abuses of women’s rights have intensified, using fear of a U.S. attack as a pretext.


In Memoriam: Mstislav Rostropovich

Friday, April 27th, 2007

Mstislav Rostropovich, 1927-2007
I couldn’t find a YouTube of his playing at the Berlin Wall, but this of Bach’s Bouree, Ste #3 is lovely:

And here’s the Prelude from Bach’s Cello Suite No. 1 in G major, BWV 1007

Friday afternoon news: Senior al-Qaida operative captured

Friday, April 27th, 2007

Claude Chafin emailed the news,

Pentagon says senior al-Qaida operative captured, taken to Guantanamo Bay

WASHINGTON – (AP) The Pentagon said Friday it has custody of one of al-Qaida’s most senior and most experienced operatives, an Iraqi who was attempting to return to his native country when he was captured.

Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman, said the captive is Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi. He was received by the Pentagon from the CIA, Whitman said, but the spokesman would not say where or when al-Iraqi was captured or by whom.

The Pentagon took custody of him at Guantanamo Bay this week, Whitman said.
Whitman said the terror suspect was responsible for plotting cross-border attacks from Pakistan on U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

‘Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi

AHB-dahl HAH-dee ahl-eeRAHkee

Nashwan ‘Abd al-Razzaq ‘Abd al-Baqi (true name)



‘Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi was one of al-Qa’ida’s highest-ranking and experienced senior operatives at the time of his detention. He had been one of the organization’s key paramilitary commanders in Afghanistan from the late 1990s and, during 2002-04, was in charge of cross-border attacks in Afghanistan against Coalition forces. In recent years, he also directed plots to assassinate perceived opponents of al-Qa’ida, including Pakistani President Pervez Musharaf and a United Nations official.

· ‘Abd al-Hadi was trying to return to his native country, Iraq , to manage al-Qa’ida’s affairs and possibly focus on operations outside Iraq against Western targets. ‘Abd al-Hadi also met with al-Qa’ida members in Iran and believed that they should be doing more with the fight, including supporting efforts in Iraq and causing problems within Iran .

· ‘Abd al-Hadi provided leadership and reconnaissance support during a rocket attack in the fall of 2003 against US military forces in Afghanistan .

‘Abd al-Hadi was born in Mosul, Iraq, in 1961. He is a former member of the Iraqi military who spent more than 15 years in Afghanistan . Before September 11, 2001, he was a member of al-Qa’ida’s ruling Shura Council – a now-defunct 10-person advisory body to Usama Bin Ladin – as well as the group’s Military Committee, which oversaw terrorist and guerrilla operations and paramilitary training. ‘Abd al-Hadi has been a member of al‑Qa’ida since the late 1990s, working for a long time as an instructor in one of al-Qa’ida’s training camps in Afghanistan .

· ‘Abd al-Hadi was known and trusted by Bin Ladin and Ayman al-Zawahiri. ‘Abd al-Hadi was in direct communication with both leaders and, at one point, was Zawahiri’s caretaker. ‘Abd al-Hadi also interacted with other senior al-Qa’ida planners and decisionmakers, such as Khalid Shaykh Muhammad and Abu Faraj al-Libi, and deceased al-Qa’ida members Hamza Rabi’a and ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Muhajir.

· ‘Abd al-Hadi associated with leaders of other extremist groups allied with al-Qa‘ida in Afghanistan and Pakistan , including the Taliban. Abd al-Hadi worked directly with the Taliban to determine responsibility and lines of communication between Taliban and al-Qa’ida leaders in Afghanistan, specifically with regard to the targeting of U.S. Forces.

More at the BBC


In other (totally unrelated) news, my next Blog Talk Radio guest will be filmmaker Tim Montgomerie, who made the World Without America videos. Join us at noon Monday, April 30.
blog radio