Al-Qaeda in the Caribbean, Sandy Berger, and today’s items

Via PJM, Al-Qaeda’s Inroads into the Caribbean

The Jammat al-Muslimeen (Muslim Group) is Trinidad and Tobago’s most notorious Muslim organization. Although Trinidad’s ethnically and religiously diverse population, split roughly between descendants of African slaves and indentured servants from India and a sizable “mixed” community, includes Sunni and Shi’a Muslim immigrants from South Asia and the Middle East, the Jammat is known almost exclusively as a Black Sunni Muslim organization comprised mainly of Afro-Trinidadian converts to Islam. The group is led by Imam Yasin Abu Bakr, a former police officer who was born Lenox Philip. The Jammat is best known for its violent 1990 attempt to overthrow the Trinidadian government over grievances related to land ownership, social and economic inequality, and government corruption [5].

The Waajihatul Islaamiyyah (Islamic Front), headed by Omar Abdullah, himself a Black Muslim convert, has also been identified as a potential threat by U.S. intelligence and Trinidadian authorities. Like the Jammat al-Muslimeen, the Wajithatul Islamiyyah is comprised mostly of Afro-Trinidadian converts to Islam. Local sources allege that Abdullah harbors extremist leanings. The Waajihatul has been accused of publishing material expressing support for al-Qaeda, but Trinidadian authorities have not provided conclusive evidence of any direct links with the group. He is often outspoken in his criticism of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East and the Trinidadian government’s policy towards Muslims. Trinidadian authorities also tie Abdullah to local crime and other illicit dealings [9].

The Jamaat al-Murabiteen (Almoravids, after the African Muslim dynasty that ruled Morocco and Spain in the 11th and 12th Century) and the related Jammat al-Islami al-Karibi (Caribbean Islamic Group) are associated with one time Jamaat al-Muslimeen chief of security Maulana Hasan Anyabwile, formerly Beville Marshall. He split with Abu Bakr in 2001 over what Trinidadian sources allege was a personal rift with the group’s leader. Anyabwile hosted a radio show where he was known to criticize Trinidadian Hindus, Indian Muslims, and his former Jamaat al-Muslimeen associates for their purported failure in improving the lot of Muslims in Trinidad and Tobago. Local sources also allege that he is an extremist [10].

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Via Mike, Sandy Berger and the Clinton Cover-Up – Why It Matters

Berger had access to Archives documents that could be critical to understanding what information the Clinton Administration had, what options it considered, and what decisions it took on these sensitive subjects. In addition to primary documents, Berger had access to copies, and the only plausible reason for taking five copies of a single memo is that some had original notes on them from key officials, maybe from Berger or President Clinton.

For Berger to risk jail and disgrace, to then give up the right to practice his profession merely in order to avoid having to answer questions, he must be hiding something important. And if it is that important to him, it is also important to us.

The most likely explanation is that the material Berger destroyed points to a terrible mistake by Berger himself, by President Clinton, or by both. In dealing with al-Qaeda, did they overlook a critical piece of information or miss a chance to stop 9/11? Did the Administration’s failure to take a more aggressive posture encourage al-Qaeda’s later attacks?

When Fox News’ Chris Wallace raised the possibility that Clinton’s Administration might have done something more to prevent 9/11, Bill Clinton went into an inexplicable rage on national television. Wallace touched a nerve. So did the DC Bar.

Knowing what information Berger destroyed also might alter views of the current Bush Administration. Was the early support from both Bill and Hillary Clinton for going to war against Saddam based on something we don’t know yet that was available to insiders in the Clinton Administration? Was it something that could come back to haunt Hillary and ruin her chances of winning Bill’s third term?

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Via Maria, Senators Rebuke Joe Wilson Claims

The committee found that internal intelligence community notes of meetings in which Valerie Plame participated “did not mark her name with a (C) as would be required to indicate that her association with the CIA was classified,” as both Plame and her husband have said. These aren’t the only instances where Wilson’s account did not square with the facts, the senators found.

Wilson has said in his book and in numerous public appearances that reports he reviewed from the U.S. ambassador to Niger, Barbro Owens-Kirkpatrick, “indicated that there was nothing to the Niger-Iraq uranium story . . . This too is untrue,” the committee found. On the contrary, Owens-Kirkpatrick wrote a cable to the State Department which said that the initial CIA reporting of a Niger-Iraq uranium deal “provides sufficient details to warrant another hard look at Niger’s uranium sales.”

Although Nigerien officials insisted in meetings with the Americans that no uranium would be sold to rogue nations, “we should not dismiss out of hand the possibility that some scheme could be, or has been, underway to supply Iraq with yellowcake from here,” she wrote.

Perhaps the most damning conclusion of the Senate report has been known for nearly three years, but has remained classified until now. In the initial July 2004 report, the Senate committee reported that the intelligence community “used or cleared the Niger-Iraq uranium intelligence fifteen times before the President’s State of the Union address and four times after, saying in several papers that Iraq was ‘vigorously pursuing uranium from Africa.'”

Despite that finding, Democrats led by Michigan Sen. Carl Levin blasted President Bush for the “16 words” in the January 2003 speech that described Iraq’s efforts to acquire uranium from Africa, calling them an effort to “cherry-pick” intelligence and to “mislead” the country and the world in a “rush to war.”

In fact, the U.S. intelligence community continued to believe in the veracity of the Niger uranium story for many months after the speech, and didn’t call back its original reporting until June 2003 — well after the liberation of Iraq.

Meanwhile, via Larwyn, Plame To Sue CIA – The Irony And The (Near) Ectasy

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Please listen to my podcast with Neo-Neocon, and tell your friends.

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Berger forfeits law license, and other items

Clinton aide forfeits law license in Justice probe

Samuel R. Berger, the Clinton White House national security adviser who was caught taking highly classified documents from the National Archives, has agreed to forfeit his license to practice law.

In giving up his license, Mr. Berger avoids being cross-examined by the Board on Bar Counsel, where he risked further disclosure of specific details of his theft.

(h/t MIchelle Malkin and Pajamas Media)

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Congressman Eric Cantor is launching his website, Solutions Factory, where he invites you to suggest solutions to political problems. The suggestions are rated by other visitors to the website.

Go visit and participate.

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Sarkozy has appointed Bernard Kourchner as foreign minister (h/t Judith)
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Jeff has a sneak peak to “Sicko”
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Iraqis observe moment of silence to mark “Mass Graves Day”

Human rights organizations estimate that more than 300,000 people, mainly Kurds and Shiite Muslims, were killed and buried in mass graves before Saddam was overthrown by U.S. forces in 2003.

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Wolfowitz Hangs On As Ouster Hits Wall
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A Disaster: The GOP Caves On Border Security, via Larwyn
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The Freedom Alliance offers scholarships for the children of military heroes: Here’s information.
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I once was lost….

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Psychology Today, the AIPAC prosecution, and other items

Remember the Psychology Today article on the Ideological Animal? Well, Cinnamon Stillwell tells us that Psy Today published my friend Asher Abrams‘s open letter (emphasis added)

I’m curious, though, to know what it is exactly that your article is trying to establish. Because it looks as if you’re trying very hard to find psychological, i.e. non-rational, explanations for cases where people adopt “conservative” political beliefs. There’s no acknowledgment that such a political shift could come about as the result of a rational assessment of the relevant facts and arguments; nor, conversely, is there any discussion of fear-related psychology on the political left (dire warnings about global warming and the ever-impending American police state spring to mind). And instead of encouraging people to inform themselves on political issues while listening with an open mind to different points of view, your article prescribes the simple expedient of “reminding ourselves to think rationally”, as if the fear itself, rather than its objective cause, were the real problem.

In fact, in an entire article devoted to what you call the “9/11 effect”, there is not a single direct reference to the terrorist attacks that killed almost 3,000 Americans.

In this light, it’s difficult for me to escape the conclusion that your article is ideologically driven. The agenda seems to be to encourage readers to dismiss precisely those fears which, in your analysis, lead to conservative politics. In short, you want to “cure” people of being conservative.

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While Sandy Berger walks free, two two former AIPAC officials are prosecuted for receiving classified information under the Espionage Act: First They Came for the Jews
A prosecution under the Espionage Act threatens the First Amendment.

What chance the defendants–who asked no one for classified information–have of acquittal and the avoidance of prison remains to be seen. Though Judge T. S. Ellis rejected defense motions to dismiss the charges on constitutional grounds, his early rulings have so far shown a keen appreciation of the meaning this case. In this he stands in sharp contrast to the nation’s leading civil rights guardians, these days busy filing lawsuits against the government and fulminating on behalf of the rights of captured terrorists in Guantanamo and elsewhere, while accusing the U.S. of failing to provide open trials and assurances that the accused have the right to view the evidence against them. As of this day neither the ACLU nor the Center for Constitutional Rights has shown the smallest interest in this prosecution so bound up with First Amendment implications. Nor has most of the media, whose daily work includes receiving “leaks” from government officials far more damaging to national security than anything alleged in this case. In this as in the Scooter Libby matter, the desire to see Bush Administration officials nailed apparently counts for more than First Amendment principle.

Powerline has more.

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Little Miss Attila posts on Fred ThompsonRobert Novak has more.
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When the money runs out. Not that the Dems give a damn. (h/t Larwyn)
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Evil Americans, Poor Mullahs

Forty-eight percent of Germans think the United States is more dangerous than Iran, a new survey shows, with only 31 percent believing the opposite. Germans’ fundamental hypocrisy about the US suggests that it’s high time for a new bout of re-education.

(h/t Irwin)

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Give Sadr the Treatment, and today’s other items

Give Sadr the Treatment: How to beat Iraq’s Shiite extremists

What I’m trying to say here is that the military component we need at this particular stage should be different from the routine military operations that U.S. and Iraqi military had been conducting so far.

The new military component should be designed to create a friendly climate where politicians can strike deals and reach compromise without coercion from radical extremists.

And so if more boots are to be added on the ground then the mission will have to include freeing politicians and parties such as Nouri al-Maliki and Tariq al-Hashimi (of the Dawa and the Islamic party respectively) from the ropes that bind them to Muqtada al-Sadr and harmful elements in the Sunni political scene.

Right now is a good time, perhaps the best time we have, to launch this effort since there’s already a large front forming from the parties that are willing to talk against the extremists’ camp.

If the way forward requires maintaining the basic course of the political process and empowering (and cleaning) the current government and its head then the only way to do this is to relieve Mr. Maliki, his party and the rest of the Shia alliance from the dominance and influence of Sadr, and there are two ways to accomplish this: either persuade Mr. Maliki and his team and promise them great support and protection from Sadr’s reach, or deal a lethal blow to Sadr and his militia in order to render him unable to inflict harm on Mr. Maliki and other members of the United Iraqi Alliance.

Now really, it shouldn’t be that difficult to figure out that the first way isn’t working out right, what’s needed now is to take the decision to try the second way and deal with the biggest threat to stability in Iraq in the way we should.

Holidays in the news:
Via Bill, Kwanzaa — Racist Holiday from Hell

John Kerry wasn’t in a holiday mood …

An exercise in arrogance: The Beeb’s Channel 4 presumes to tell Christians what Christmas is about by having a Muslim woman deliver an “alternate” Christmas message. Here’s the video:

The Hajj starts tomorrow. Will the Beeb’s Channel 4 have a Christian woman give Muslims an “alternative” pilgrimage message?

Point – counterpoint on Indonesia:
Friendly Muslims vs. Here Dhimmi Dhimmi Dhimmi…

Books, and other items from Larwyn, Cinnammon and Maria
Austin Bay reviews Lawrence Wright’s book, The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11

Alexandra and Dr. Sanity ponder Iran.

Via Larwyn, Books on my Amazon Wish List
and
Now, Murtha’s Lobbyist Connections Come Into Question. Now isn’t it precious, as the Church Lady would say, having a lobbying group’s acronym spell P-A-I-D?

Via Cinnammon, The Sandy Berger Experiment: Bush Official Destroyed 9/11 Documents

Via Maria, the US Navy Presidential Ceremonial Honor Guard Drill Team:

More blogging later.

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sandy berger’s pants

a poem by John Jay:

he gots ants in his pants
and a bowling ball, blue,
three pairs of socks,
and an old brown shoe.

he gots ants in his pants,
some bricks and some mortar, too,
some sand and six pounds o’ rocks,
gots to repair an old chimney flue.

stuffed his briefcase under his belt,
full of papers and micro-fishies
hand carried his lunch out in a paper sack,
didn’t want no mayo, gettin’ on his micro penis-iche.

he gots ants in his pants,
a framed autographed glossy of monica, brand new,
two ink pens and a magic marker,
and an old recipe for whatchacallit stew.

he gots ants in his pants,
why, my goodness, if you worked for bill, wouldn’t you?
gots some sins and omissions for the commissions,
why, my goodness, working for bill, whatchagonna do?

oh yeah, he gots ants in his pants,
and some used-to-be-state-secret stuff, can’t view,
i’d like to know some of that guff, wouldn’t you?
but, my goodness, working for bill, what you gonna do?

end up like vincent, with the 9 millimeter flu?

oh, sandy, he gots ants in his pants,
some chump change, case he gots to get frugal
and a road map of arkansas, and environs,
case he gots to go hide, with the billings, and susan mcdougal.

chorus for soros, …
so who gots the papers,
think that they belongs to billy,
or do you ‘spose, just like the law office billings
that they wind up on a desk belonging to hilly?
she smells like the sweetest rose, if they vanish in the vapors.
oh, yeah, just vanish in the air, like a wraith of swirling ether.

john jay @ 09.17.2006

John was inspired by Atlas.
Not just in his socks. Under a construction trailer, too.

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