Thursday, June 15, 2006

Hadji Girl

Michelle Malkin nails the rank double standard and hypocrisy of the attempt to crucify a Marine for singing a song that conveys insufficient sensitivity to the horrors of war.

Read Malkin's comparison to a truly execrable rap song that came out last year to effusive praise from the MSM, and then compare the lyrics of Hadji Girl for which Cpl. Joshua Belile is being put to the rack.

Better yet, listen to the song for yourself here (scroll down to pic of Belile). The song has a callousness and coarseness to it that I find unpleasant, even disturbing, and which the Marines might be justified in discouraging. Nevertheless, the outrage being expressed over the ballad strikes me as hysterical, absurd and based on claims about the song that are simply not true.

Leiberman to Jump Ship?

Senator Joe Lieberman, all but abandoned by the Democratic party in his primary race with businessman Ned Lamont, may be holding the decisive card. The Democrats have been frosty toward him because of his support for the Iraq war and his unwillingness to criticize the Bush administration for the manifold crimes of which the Democrats believe it guilty.

The word is, though, that if it looks like Leiberman will lose the primary to Lamont he may jump ship and run as an Independent, in which case he'd probably win re-election. Such a move would make it almost impossible for the Democrats to regain majority status in the Senate. Leiberman's defection would be an interesting payback to the party for its failure to support a long-term senator and former vice-presidential candidate.

Read the full account here.

UnTruth at TruthOut

Now that Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has decided that there's no case against Karl Rove, Jason Leopold at TruthOut (the window).com looks pretty ridiculous with all that egg dripping down his face. A month ago he wrote:

Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald spent more than half a day Friday at the offices of Patton Boggs, the law firm representing Karl Rove. During the course of that meeting, Fitzgerald served attorneys for former Deputy White House Chief of Staff Karl Rove with an indictment charging the embattled White House official with perjury and lying to investigators related to his role in the CIA leak case, and instructed one of the attorneys to tell Rove that he has 24 business hours to get his affairs in order, high level sources with direct knowledge of the meeting said Saturday morning.

We waited for the news to break in the MSM but it never did. Apparently it didn't because either Leopold's sources are unreliable or he just projected his own fantasy onto reality. Either way TruthOut looks bad. Again.

Security Crackdown in Baghdad

Mohammed at Iraq the Model gives us an inside look at the new security push in Baghdad:

Baghdad looked tense today as the city witnessed the launch of the new massive security operation "Forward Together". The feeling here ranges from anxiety to hope which I saw clear in the voice and looks of the people I met; in addition to the understandable anxiety that accompanies every new military operation I saw a lot about hope that this new operation may be able to stop or even reverse the deterioration of security in the capital.

Well maybe this is our best chance to achieve some progress security-wise and there's a growing feeling (I won't say dominant but it's here and it's visible) that the new government has the real and serious desire to end this tragic chapter of Baghdad's history.

It seems that President Bush's visit to Baghdad has given more credibility for the operation; that at least was what I heard from people around me or read in Baghdad's papers today; the visit definitely left a positive impression that America is dead serious this time about finding solutions for Iraq especially when it comes to security and critical parts of reconstruction like electricity.

No one can predict how much time this new operation will take but time in this case is of little importance compared to accomplishing the objectives of the operation.

The streets weren't so much different this morning except for increased security presence in the form of checkpoints and traffic jams that were associated with a few incidents and this is what I experienced this morning on my way to work, most likely that was because I live in one of the hot spots that was among those listed as targets for the operation.

I heard a number of explosions that weren't so far away with sporadic light and medium gunfire but news reports indicate that only one incident left casualties.

Some Baghdadis have shopped for extra amounts of water, food and fuel expecting the operation and curfews to take more than a few days and there's a minor internal immigration within Baghdad from the more dangerous districts to the relatively safer ones. This isn't happening in large numbers and I knew about it only from some families that I know that have temporarily left their homes in some districts.

In Baghdad you can't find the same feeling you would find in Ramadi, that is the fear that the operation will include collective punishment and this is because Baghdadis are used to living standards of a big city (in Middle Eastern standards though) but in the past few years they have suffered enough from militants of all types and want their city life back, they want to see militias and insurgents defanged and they want schools and markets and services to function properly again.

So for this operation to work out, we will need to focus on disarmament and collecting every piece of weapons that can be collected because each weapon represents a chance for more violence. In fact I believe this will be the main objective of this operation; to maintain strong security presence, make it harder for the militants to move around and do as much disarmament as possible.

The media here is reporting that the plans include collecting all unnecessary weapons from homes; that's if a family possesses two weapons fro example they will be allowed to keep only one small weapon with a limited amount of ammunition even if both weapons were licensed. There are also rumors that the campaign will include questioning those who have recently moved from other provinces and settled in Baghdad or those who relocated themselves within Baghdad to verify the reasons behind that movement.

There's more from Mohammed at the link. For three years we have been training the Iraqis to take over the task of providing security for their country. More and more they're doing exactly that. If the Iraqi government can suppress the insurgency in Baghdad and make it a safer place it will represent a quantum leap forward toward the goal of a stable Iraq.