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A Different Demonstration


’Peace’ protestors seem to like clowns and performers on stilts. In Kurdistan the liberation crowd prefer rather different props:

“We have been afraid so long. We have not been able to sleep. Now we can.” Behind him a group of youths danced on the roundabout, waving a 4ft replica of a B-52. They grinned and waggled several homemade cardboard cruise missiles. “I want to drop this on Saddam Hussein’s house,” Hoyshar Rashid,20, joked.”

Profiles in Courage


The House voted 414-0 last night on a resolution “Stating the sense of the House of Representatives regarding the systematic human rights violations in Cuba committed by the Castro regime; calling for the immediate release of all political prisoners and supporting free elections for Cuba.” The vote was 414-0.

11 Voting “present”
Frank Ballance
John Conyers
Jesse Jackson Jr.
Sheila Jackson-Lee
Eddie Bernice Johnson
Carolyn Kilpatrick
Barbara Lee
Ron Paul
Bobby Rush
Maxine Waters
Albert Wynn


Ozymandias Watch


The London Times joins in.

Web Briefing: April 16, 2014

Civilian Regret (Con’t)


Yet more. Am I eligible for sales commission from the military recruiters?
Or better yet, an embedment(?) on the upcoming North Korea operation?
“Derb: I read your email about the Sun engineer who regretted never joining
the military and it rang true for me too. But that’s not what was
interesting to me about it… It also basically represents the very
situation my brother was in 7 years ago. In the exact same circumstances,
with the same feelings, he went and joined the USMC Reserve. Now he’s an
infantry NCO in the middle of the Battle of Baghdad, part of Fox Company
2/23, the only group of American reservists in Baghdad right now. And
they’re not in the party section of downtown Baghdad, either. They’re still
in the shooting part of town. Rick Leventhal from Fox News is embedded with
them right now and reported last night that they had 9 casualties helo-ed to
Kuwait yesterday. They’re the group of hard-asses that are riding around
town trying to draw fire (successfully, too) so they know who to kill. All
of these guys are reservists, who presumably had the same feelings that your
Sun engineer and I have but who acted on it and are now on the front lines
of the war to save the world. Always faithful!”


Civilian Regrets


Oh, boy. I have spent the last 30 minutes fielding e-mails from readers of
The Corner saying “That’s exactly how I feel!” (Referring to that post an
hour or so ago from a 28-yr-old software engineer.) Well, 28 is not too
late. Here is a reader with a constructive suggestion: “John, as somebody
who was in the same boat as your software engineer until last November, I
wonder if you wouldn’t pass along a note from this 29 year old computer
geek, inviting him to consider the Reserves. I am due to report to Army
training this month, while my wife is carrying my first child, and I can’t
tell you how charged up I am to FINALLY get a chance to earn my uniform and
lay to rest any regrets I have ever had over not joining the Army as a
teenager after the first Gulf War. It is hard on the family, sure. My wife
and I have had to move recently to afford the lean times while I am in
service. But can you put a price on knowing that you serve the greatest
country with the finest armed force in the history of history? I think not!
So, to the nameless software engineer, I say: join me, sir. Call your local
recruiter. In fact, if you are a Seattle area soul, call Sergeant Allison
who is head of the local recruiter station. He is at 362-1465. Tell him
you want to know if the Army Reserve has room for one more patriot.” I
can’t wait to see the recruiting numbers for the next few weeks.

A Find?


Marines hold nuclear site 18 miles outside Baghdad.

Only a Phone Call Away


A woman in Grand Island, Nebraska, whose son is a lt.-col. in the army, got a phone call yesterday.

“He told me that he was going to wash his hair and brush his teeth in Saddam’s private bathroom,” Gloria Presnell said. “The only thing I could say to him was, ‘I hope you use your own toothbrush.’”

From the Omaha World-Herald, posted on

Shocked and Awed


BREAKING!: Baghdad Bob lied:

Arabs clustered at TV sets in shop windows, coffee shops, kitchens and offices to watch the astounding pictures of U.S. troops overwhelming an Arab capital for the first time ever. Feeling betrayed and misled, some turned off their sets in disgust when jubilant crowds in Baghdad celebrated the arrival of U.S. troops.

“We discovered that all what the [Iraqi] information minister was saying was all lies,” said Ali Hassan, a government employee in Cairo, Egypt. “Now no one believes Al-Jazeera anymore.”

In a live report from Baghdad, correspondent Shaker Hamed of Abu Dhabi Television said: “We are all in shock. How did things come to such an end? How did U.S. tanks enter the center of the city? Where is the resistance? This collapse is puzzling. Was it the result of the collapse of communications between the commanders? Between the political leadership? How come Baghdad falls so easily.”

The Whitneys


If you have been keeping up with Gleaves Whitney’s pieces on NRO based on letters from his deployed son, tune into MSNBC tonight between 10:30 and 11:00. I’m told he and Mrs. Whitney will be on talking about Ian’s letters and the responses they’ve received. I’m fairly certain Jed Babbin will be on during that same hour.

Where Did That Come From?


A profile of Colin Farrell in the Washington Post veers off into a discussion of the actor’s attitudes toward homosexuality: “Images of Farrell drinking in pubs with mates, carousing till all hours and wandering the streets–memorably celebrated in a Vanity Fair cover story last year–aren’t necessarily all benign and merry. Devoutly heterosexual and unashamedly macho as he is, one wonders whether Farrell might harbor a homophobic streak somewhere, or what he and those randy mates would do if they encountered, say, a gay couple walking home from a different kind of bar.” Farrell reassures the author, Post tv critic Tom Shales, on these points. Then Shales comes back with: “One might think that even Farrell’s decision to become an actor would be mocked as slightly sissified by down-home cronies. ‘No,’ he says with finality.” Shales spends more than an eighth of his space on this topic. It seems rather weird to me that a guy should be presumed to be “homophobic” for liking drinks and women.

Our Occupation


According to the Kingdom:

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud, looking upset at a news conference, called for a quick end to Iraq’s “occupation.” In a rare departure from diplomacy, Saud responded to a question about Arab anger toward the United States with: “I don’t want to talk about anger if you don’t mind today.”

Consensus Reached


I completely agree with Maureen Dowd’s conclusions today. She writes, “The success of this war should not leave us infatuated with war. Americans’ tolerance for these casualties should not be mistaken for a willingness to absorb endless American sacrifice on endless battlefields.” Excellent points! By all means, let’s resolve not to be infatuated with war. And let’s not assume that Americans are willing to absorb endless sacrifice on endless battlefields. Just in case anyone is tempted. “Victory in Iraq will be a truly historic event, but it will be exceedingly weird and dangerous if this administration turns America into Sparta.” Why yes it would. “There remains the unfinished business of Osama bin Laden. But the end of Operation Iraqi Freedom should not mark the beginning of Operation Eternal War.” No, no, it shouldn’t. Although I would like to see how the networks would logo that one.

My E-Mail of The Day


And one I’ll long remember. From a reader with an email address indicating
he is an employee of a large and famous software company whose name is an
anagram of SNU: “Ever since 9/11 I have lamented the fact that I never
joined the military and that my job (software engineering) does not
contribute even remotely to the war effort. I am 28 years old, a college
grad, have a wife, a house, and a child on the way, yet I feel my life is
not complete. When I see our soldiers, airmen, sailors, marines, and
coastguardsmen fighting for my country I regret not being one of them. Pride
in the military was not fostered in my generation, we are the children of
the Vietname era. As a result I was more interested in going to college,
getting a job, and making money than joining the military. But over the
years, as I’ve lived my life, I have developed a respect and pride for the
military on my own. I have observed the actions of our military, in Kuwait,
Iraq, Bosnia, Panama, Afghanistan, and many other places. Today I am
extremely proud of our military and regret that I am not part of it. I plan
to make sure that my children, and their generation know this pride from an
early age, so that they can make a more informed decision than I did.”

Hey, Maybe We Have Found Baghdad Bob?




One prognosticator that was exactly right: Senator McCain predicted that the war against Saddam “will be a slam dunk . . . they [the Iraqi people] will dance on his grave.” (Newark) Star-Ledger 2/23/03.

The Battle That Never Happened


Daniel Schorr


Another e-mail, from another professor, this time Matthew Franck of Radford University:

On this happy, happy day, I just heard Daniel Schorr’s commentary on NPR’s “All Things Distorted” (no Fox News at the office, just radio). Could he bring himself to congratulate the Iraqis on their liberation, or the U.S. and the Coalition for bringing that about? Not on your life. Instead he obsessed about as-yet undiscovered WMDs, saying that Pres. Bush and his advisors were “sweating this one out,” that they would be “embarrassed” if no such weapons are found–that they’d have a lot of ’splainin’ to do about “disrupting the UN inspections process” and “splitting the western alliance” in order to bring about “this destructive war.” So far the most significant way in which this war has been “destructive” is with respect to Saddam Hussein’s tyranny. But somehow Schorr forgot to mention that. Will he eat crow on the air when we do find the weapons we’ve known along Saddam had? I won’t hold my breath.

Remember That Russian Convoy?




I’m collecting wrong predictions, etc., for a quick column. If you have candidates, send them my way–Matthews, Buchanan, et al.

“The War Is Over”


Mohammed Aldouri, Iraq rep. to U.N., to FNC. And, actually, he first called it a GAME, not a war.


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