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Cnn Vs. Al Jazeera



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This Arab News piece saysCNN is a propaganda outlet for the Bush administration. As if. Al Jazeera, in contrast, shows “humane side of this unjust war.” Humane was not exactly the word I would have used to describe their repeated airing of the same gruesome video of our POWs this past weekend (Or of other sickening images being fed from Iraqi state TV). There’s also the issue of Osama bin Laden press release videos…

One More On Depleted Uranium



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From a reader:

Jonah –

You posted a very informative message from a reader about depleted uranium. In it, he wrote

“The war against DU usage is based solely on the fear created by the usage of the word. Uranium.”

I’d add to that — the war against DU also is based on the fear created when it flies out fo the gatling gun of an A-10 Thunderbolt.

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Devil Worshippers



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From a reader I’ve long relied on for Islam stuff and who shall henceforth be known in this space as “my Islam guy.”

Jonah,

I could dig up more details for you, but off the top of my head, here’s the deal with “fedayeen” and the “devil worshippers” Rick Brookhiser mentioned earlier on the Corner.

1. “Devil-worshipping” Yazidis. Basically they’re a sect that has an interesting take of the “Fall of Lucifer” tale as it exists in Islam. In Islam, Iblis (Satan) fell because when God created Man, he ordered all the angels to bow down before him, since Man was His supreme creation. Iblis refused. For this, he was banished. The Yazidis consider his refusal to bow to have been, in fact, a correct and pious act, since one _never_ bows before a creation, only the Creator Himself. So they consider Iblis a “good” angel or saint. They’re not devil-worshippers in the western, Satanist sense (i.e., anti- the main religion).

2. “Fedayeen” comes originally, as far as I know, from the Nizari Isma’ili sect best known in the west as the Assassins (who were not, incidentally, hash-addled goofballs, but gnostic ascetics. The term “hashishin” seems to have been a pejorative stuck on them by their neighbors, perhaps like, “Those crackheads up in the fortress there.”) The assassins’ operatives, who were often what we’d call deep-cover agents, were called “fidâ’î” (singular) / “fidâ’iyûn.” The literal connotation is “sacrificer,” in the sense of one who’s willing to risk his life for a cause. It’s since become a general term for commandos, shock troops, etc. In the current context, your description of the “Fedayeen Saddam” as a Ba’athist brownshirts is perfectly correct.


Web Briefing: April 17, 2014

“U$ Lackey”



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Canadians deface statue of Wayne Gretzky because he supports war.

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I Left Out The Best Part



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Click here for the anti-protestor photo gallery.

Good For Donna



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My friend and regular CNN sparring partner, Donna Brazile, gets it and supports GW Bush.

Another Victim...



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Of Assan Akhbar’s treasonous attack has died from his injuries. According to Fox News.

Canadians...



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Peacenik Photo Gallery



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Some great stuff here. Imagine if conservatives compared Colin Powell to an apeman.

Scott Ritter



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Scott Ritter always boast of his experience serving with the US Marines. Do Marines really talk this way when Marines are in battle? Here’s the bulk of it:

Lisbon – The United States does not have the military means to take over Baghdad and will lose the war against Iraq, former UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter said.

“The United States is going to leave Iraq with its tail between its legs, defeated. It is a war we can not win,” he told private radio TSF in an interview broadcast here on Tuesday evening.

“We do not have the military means to take over Baghdad and for this reason I believe the defeat of the United States in this war is inevitable,” he said.

War ‘already lost’

“Every time we confront Iraqi troops we may win some tactical battles, as we did for ten years in Vietnam, but we will not be able to win this war, which in my opinion is already lost,” Ritter added.

Sam Strike



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From various reports out of the Pentagon: At 3 AM EST, 9 Iraqi missile and launcher sites were taken out. They were in civilian neighborhoods, some of them were within 300 feet of residential homes.

Optimism, For a Change



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Walid Phares is keeping hope alive.

Wh Stud



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A reader asks: “If Helen Thomas knew she was making Ari sexy, would she stop?”

Inappropriate Glee Dept



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Eric Alterman sounds like he greets negative war headlines with a high-five and a loud “Yessss!”

Re: Depleted Uranium



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From a reader:


Jonah,

Actually, the radioactive period for DU is very long. It has a half-life of 4.5 billion years, but that is precisely why it is considered not to be dangerously radioactive. Very radioactive substances have short half lives, because the fission producing the radiation and breakdown in atomic structure occurs rapidly. The truth is that the Lincoln Memorial is probably more radioactive than DU, as marble and granite contain uranium ore, and depleted uranium is less radioactive than natural uranium. The vastly more radioactive isotopes of uranium (U-234 and U-235) have been removed, leaving a metal that is 98+% composed of the negligibly radioactive U-238.

The true danger of DU is toxicity. It is a heavy metal, and DU rounds produce uranium oxide dust which can be inhaled or ingested. But toxicity is a common component of many weapons systems. The smoke produced by solid rocket motors is highly toxic, which is why our Multiple Launch Rocket Systems batten down all the hatches before firing: the smoke will kill you.

In short, there are all sorts of reasons not to go digging around in a burned out Iraqi tank. There are many types of toxic substances and unexploded ordinance left on the battlefield. DU is no more dangerous, and perhaps less so, than many other remnants of modern battle. The war against DU usage is based solely on the fear created by the usage of the word. Uranium.

Sky News Watch



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The Brits have captured a Brit who was fighting against them, for the Iraqi regime.

Elite Forces



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From a Marine reader:


Jonah-

As a Marine Corps Captain, I would like to pitch a gripe about all these headlines lately about the “elite republican guards” heading south toward the Marines. The headline should read “Republican Guards heading south on suicide mission toward Elite Marines.”

This Settles It



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From a reader:

Jonah,

In the case of the Fedayeen, who willingly sacrifice themselves for a murderous dictator, I think the english one-word equivalent that you are searching for is “stupid”.

Re: Fedayeen Emailers



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Yes, yes… I know we have the word “Martyr.” But A) I was kind of joking. B) Martyr typically refers to those who’ve died, not those willing to die, as in “I will be a martyr…”

Fierce Fighting in Najaf Area Continues



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