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November 29, 2006




Considering what a whack-nut Greenwald is why are you quoting him? It's like Andrew Sullivan. Is there some profit to be made from quoting and answering complete imbeciles?


Hhhmmm...how many people still believe in Greenwald after the recent discovery of his sock puppetry?


Greenwald has definitely been marginalized in all this brou-ha-ha. Kind of like all those whackos saying Rove was about to be indicted. Their veracity and general accuracy has been brought to light. Even their ability to really see the forest for the trees is questionable. I don't see them as a reliable or believable source of information.

Cecil Turner

Is there some profit to be made from quoting and answering complete imbeciles?

Well, Andrew is apparently newsworthy, so answering him is worthwhile from a current events standpoint, if nothing else. Needling Greenwald seems to be more in the nature of a low form of entertainment (but fun!). Though it may also be angling for an Instalanche, since the other Glenn is generally a sucker for this sort of thing.

Jim Miller

Did Pelosi promise the chairmanship to Alcee Hastings? Different journalists had different takes on that question. Michael Barone, for one, said that she had, and so did a reporter for the Miami Herald, something I discussed in this post.

I think she did, but will agree that we do not have conclusive evidence for that. Neither Barone nor the Herald reporter cited named sources, so there is no easy way to check. (It is possible, for instance, that Pelosi had told Hastings that he would be considered, and that he floated the story that he had been promised the job.) I generally trust Barone, but all of us make mistakes from time to time -- and an informant might not have told him the truth.

(If there is an enterprising reporter out there, they might put the question to Pelosi directly. I think we can take anything except a flat no as a confirmation.)


Looks like you had a lot of fun with your Greenwald grudge match. Reminded me of the old Mad Magazine "Spy vs Spy" comic.

As far as Pelosi goes, she really couldn't pick either H or H, so she didn't. What's the big deal?

Mark Coffey

You really had to be there (there being Greenwald's comments) to really appreciate this story. Last night, I was there, as was Tom, trying to deflate the ridiculous notion that Pelosi never intended to pick Hastings, but rather was the victim of a wide-ranging conspiracy that swallowed up Bush supporters, the entire Washington press corp, and basically everyone else but Greenwald, all with the ostensible purpose of causing Pelosi to fail.

Even more outrageous was Greenwald's (and his followers) assertion that no one REALLY objected to having an impeached judge in the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, since it was essentially a meaningless (!) post...

And when the story was confirmed in every particular, did that faze the Greenwald sycophants? Not in the least...just more evidence that the whole world has it in for Pelosi...

too many steves

What smear? If Pelosi - under pressure from Hastings, the Congressional Black Caucus, her own comments (circa 2005), and others - took a closer look, thought about the impact on the "New Direction" theme of the recent election that would come from naming Hastings (soiled background and all) and decided he was the wrong choice, then I think that shows decent to good leadership, not to mention guts and strength. That she found a way out of what looks to be a prior commitment to Hastings speaks well of her political skills.

Isn't it more likely that Pelosi, having decided Hastings was a bad choice, let all this spin and swirl and public examination of Hasting's past boil up enough that it blunted or killed his supporter's ability to continue advocating for him?


In other, related news - FDL's TRex is betting against Althouse in the Althouse v Greenwald/Sullivan Texas Chain Cage Death Match.

TRex is, lest we forget, a self-described pussy - judging from his enraged blogging about yet outward calm when in the physical presence of Ann during the election night blog party.

TRex: Oscar Wilde without that whole 'in real-time' constraint.


I have an off topic question. Yesterday the press asked Pelosi a question (which I don't recall) and she cited the Patriot Act for saying the President screwed up. Come to find out whatever she was addressing was not in the Patriot Act. Then her staff issued a statement saying she misubderstood the question.

Does anyone have a clue what I am talking about or have a link to the incident?

(And yes I am losing my mind)


Greenwald and his fellow poofter, Andrew Sullivan, are both beyond belief. I rather suspect that they're a bit like the crazy old maid aunts that the family relegates to the attic (or the basement) when company comes to visit. Their not-so-benign cases of uncontrolled flatulence is probably also a factor.

John Emerson

Pelosi and Greenwald came out of this looking pretty good, no?

Did Tom Maquire? Who cares?

Josh: "The one point I wholeheartedly agree on is that the last thing anybody who has any say in how the Democratic Caucus is run should do is take any advice or counsel from the folks who run the Post oped page or their ilk."

The ilk includes Tom.


Pelosi and Greenwald came out of this looking pretty good, no?


Mark Coffey

John Emerson, Greenwald came out of this looking good? Yeah, sure, and Nixon left the White House in pretty decent shape, too...

Charlie (Colorado)

Pelosi and Greenwald came out of this looking pretty good, no?

No, actually they both ended up looking like idiots.

You too.

Of course, typing with that sock over your hand makes it easier to look like an idiot.


Nancy Pelosi-clueless-who knew?

Charlie (Colorado)

Jane, it was the 9/11 Commission, not the Patriot Act. Someone asked her about Bush saying al Qaeda was behind some of the attacks this week in Iraq, and she said that it was "sad" that Bush was falling back on that when the 9/11 Commission had already said it wasn't true.

Then her staff had to explain why she was saying the 9/11 Commission had refuted something that happened a couple years after it dissolved.


Hastings has been there for seven years and since then intlligence has failed, WMD etc. Harman has been there since Plame. Leaks, assassinations, criminal conspiracy charges passed by DOJ, and who really is harman? Harman listening to complaints from CIA like Plame and putting us through CIA flights,NSA, etc.? If it is harman who has ordered investigations of intelligence because of bad agents with a foriegn agenda, like Plame, it's simple to see the incompetence and lack of understanding of intelligence. Americans got more leaks under harman than anyone els, and there was also Plame, perhaps its women at work?

US intelligence has been permantly damaged under these two and it's probably their incompetence on the committee. The NSA issue is simply ridiculous. CIA is now moving over to DOD-DIA/NSA and DIA is requesting the same operations officer powers CIA has domestically. CIA is beginning its ending by moving over to DOD and the Directors who are appointed are just saving their jobs. Congress tried to abolish CIA once and it should again. CIA moving over to DOD is seen as a penetration(yes, the guys doing this are all Air Force). CIA has admitted employing at least one terrorist. CIA is where the spies are and that's what they mean; now they have run of DOD/NSA and DIA.

Harman and hastings have been very destructive to the community since they have been on the committee. The US intelligence community is damaged beyond what was thought possible - DOJ no longer prosecutes bad agents. Pelosi is probably aware of this and is looking for someone new who has not done this type of damage because sooner or later it will leak that all the intelligence we were put through is because somone complained to Harman or Hastings - who simply did not understand existing intelligence;so it has to be reviewed and the current administation is blamed for intelligence that has always been done.

Hoyer and his constituents(CIA/feds) taught Pelosi to be careful here and she may be a winner if she goes for someone totally new to Hoyer and US Intelligence.


God and Haste: The argument is that God is never in a rush, but the truth is he always is; so don't believe the preacher if he tells you different!


God and Haste: The argument is that God is never in a rush, but the truth is he always is; so don't believe the preacher if he tells you different!


Jane--you might check the Fox News transcripts of Hume's show last night where they ran the Pelosi idiocy. Surely if a Rep had made such a stupid statement it would have been on every front page today. Just shows ya'.

And TM--"My current secret sin "--If this is a secret sin, remind me never to confess a deep, dark secret to you. SECRET TO WHO?


Pelosi's comments were beyond stupid - like she only knows one thing.

She seems to me to be vulnerable to pressure. I hope she gets in full measure, what she has given.



That helps. Have you seen anyone blog about it?


I couldn't find the transcript. It was reported in the beginning and then the panel talked about it. Do they usually have transcripts somewhere there?


Jane, they have recently changed the FNC web page. I scanned thru it and didn't find it. You may have to go to google blog to find someone who picked it up. *sigh*


Jane-I went to pajamasmedia and found this CNN article on her remarks:

http://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/blogs/politicalticker/2006/11/pelosi-sad-over-bushs-iraq_28.html the Dumb


http://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/blogs/politicalticker/2006/11/pelosi-sad-over-bushs-iraq_28.html>Pelosi the Dumb

Cecil Turner

That helps. Have you seen anyone blog about it?

There are a couple of news stories about it, and a good discussion here.


Have you noticed that Google is pretty short on reporting right-sided blogs?

I found it at Newbusters. Thanks for the help everyone. I'd be lost without the lot of you.


Sullivan and Greenwald are squandering Whuffie. They will lose more if you ignore them.

Whuffie: the ephemeral, reputation-based currency of Cory Doctorow's sci-fi novel, Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom. ... In the book's post-scarcity world, a person's current Whuffie is instantly viewable to anyone, as everybody has a brain-implant giving them an interface with the Net.


San Fran Nan obviously has a smart and tough plan for these committee slots and Greenwald must be an insider and cannot reveal her true brilliance at this point. I predict that when her choice is revealed mere mortals will cower in awe.


Certainly Cecil will--he's always cowering in awe.

Fox is reporting this:"British Airways Grounds 3 767s to Check for Plutonium"


I thought the Hastings appointment was supposed to be a Pelosi bayback for something - maybe something to do with Jefferson. Wasn't it a deal with the black caucus?

Cecil Turner

Certainly Cecil will--he's always cowering in awe.

Well, right now I'm stupefied by the prospect of a Speaker-elect who apparently hasn't heard of "Al Qaeda in Iraq"--or the fact that they despise the Shias--and have been responsible for much of the internecine violence (to the point that their late unlamented leader was apparently called to correct his ways by a Bin Laden lieutenant). So yeah, I could probably get awed a bit easier than usual . . .


Cecil, to quote Taranto, that's "al-Qaeda-that-has-nothing-to-do-with-Iraq in Iraq-that-has-nothing-to-do-with-al-Qaeda" or its abbreviation, AQTHNTDWIiITHNTDWAQ.


With a little work, Taranto could make that into a pretty palindrome.


Maybe we could get Nan a gig on The View and the entire country could be stupified.


I can't wait for the runoff in Louisiana that involves Jefferson. I just want to see if the voters will elect a guy with 90000 dollars in his freezer. If they do all bets are off. Pelosi will probably appoint him to a spot on the going nowhere ethics committee.



I almost...well...polonium not plutonium.


Plutonium leaks/radiates differently like it will go through ,erh, my shorts!

Anyways-paging Murtha-crrrrrap I am obsessed with that story.

Back to Greenwald-this is a guy who talks out his sock puppet. There is a reason he named his blog Unclaimed Territory -he doesn't even want to own it.

Let Glenn own that Pelosi never intended to hire Hastings -maybe she was just stringing the Congressional Black Caucus along and telling them what they wanted to hear. This is the "super secret" only Glenn and his sockpuppet are privy to-yet are trying to let their minions know...

Cripes! Maguire-you can't make me read that circular logic squad over there again.

I'm with Jane.

Jane is trying to follow Pelosi-I tried to follow Greenwald following Pelosi and cripes mentally we've ended up in his "territory"- Sas-catcha-quack!


roanoke--I just reported what they said..It may have been polonium..it may have been something else. One account says the planes had flown from Athens, Moscow (and I forgot the third place).


Vienna was the third departure point..Three planes suspected of radiation, arrived in London from Athens, Vienna and Moscow. Two of the three planes tested positive, the third plane is in Moscow where there are planes to test it.

That's the very latest on this curious story.


Too many bad things are coming out of Moscow-polonium and Putin. Radiation poisoning- a new tool in the terrorism war.

Tom Maguire

Re: "Considering what a whack-nut Greenwald is why are you quoting him?" - I associate myself with Mr. Turner's comment of 7:18.

I should add that since I have been posting on the Alcee Hastings things since last August I feel like a bit of follow-up (and shooting of the wounded) is appropriate.

From Tex: "As far as Pelosi goes, she really couldn't pick either H or H, so she didn't. What's the big deal?

To the extent it is a big deal, it is because it looked bad following the Murtha debacle, and it calls into question her media savvy and political skills.

Obviously, Pelosi has not even become Speaker yet, and she will try to re-launch her brand in January, but she certainly cheated herself out of a post-election honeymoon.

At some point I ought to articulate my own estimated timeline of events. the quick version would be:

Sept 2005 - the CBC is irked about William Jefferson (who has not yet been busted withthe cold cash). They go to Nancy; since this is pre-Katrina debacle and Iraq is up in the air, she hopes she is promising a Chairmanship but expects she is offering the much less visible Ranking Dem spot on the HPSCI.

Aug 2006 - Reps start muttering about the scary incoming chairman; the Times has their first story, with Hastings mentioned but buried.

Sept-Oct 2006 - greenwald may have a bit of traction here - if I could find old Limbaugh transcripts, I would bet he framed this as Hastings or Harman. the MSM ignores this until late October

Late October: the ABC Note mocks the Hastings cover-up by the MSM; shortly thereafter the NY Times and AP stories (linked above) incorporate push-back from the Pelosi camp (a substantive Harman-Pelosi dispute, not a catfight; Hastings only one candidate of several).

Nov: TIME reports that Harman is under investigation - was that a leak from the Rep side, pelosi, or Hastings? Who knows? My first guess was Bush, but I am not sure that Reps try to tar people as being too cozy with Israel.

And post-election, post-Murtha - MSM smells blood in water, latches onto the "Pelosi loyal but crazy" theme, and away we go.

The Times was on her side in October - who is her media strategist?


Routes of the planes in question:

The following British Airways’ flights are involved.

London Heathrow to Moscow/Moscow to London Heathrow October 25, BA875 October 26, BA872 and BA873 October 28, BA872 and BA873 October 31, BA874 and BA875 November 3, BA874 and BA875 November 7, BA872 and BA873 November 8, BA874 and BA875 November 9, BA872 and BA873 November 14, BA872 and BA873 November 15, BA874 and BA875 November 16, BA872 and BA873 November 17, BA874 and BA875 November 18, BA874 and BA875 November 20, BA872 and BA873 November 22, BA872 and BA873 November 25, BA872 and BA873 November 28, BA872 and BA873

London Heathrow to Barcelona/Barcelona to London Heathrow November 4, BA478 and BA479 November 16, BA478 and BA479 November 17, BA478 and BA479 November 19, BA478 and BA479 November 20, BA478 and BA479 November 21, BA478 and BA479 November 22, BA478 and BA479 November 23, BA478 and BA479 November 24, BA478 and BA479

London Heathrow to Dusseldorf/Dusseldorf to London Heathrow October 30, BA936 and BA937 November 6, BA936 and BA937 November 18, BA936 and BA937 November 19, BA936 and BA937 November 24, BA936 and BA937 November 25, BA936 and BA937 November 27, BA936 and BA937

London Heathrow to Athens October 30, BA632 November 6, BA632 November 7, BA634 November 9, BA634 November 10, BA632 November 14, BA634 November 19, BA632 November 20, BA634 November 21, BA632 November 22, BA634 November 24, BA632 November 25, BA632 November 27, BA632 November 28, BA634

Athens to London Heathrow October 30, BA633 November 6, BA633 November 8, BA631 November 10, BA631 November 10, BA633 November 15, BA631 November 19, BA633 November 21, BA631 November 21, BA633 November 23, BA631 November 24, BA633 November 25, BA633 November 27, BA633



FNC: The radiation found on the planes was polonium..Authorities interested in 2 Russians who met with Litvinenko in the Millenium Hotel and have returned to Russia. One was a former KGB agent.

33k passengers may be affected though the radiation on these planes is very low level.

Florence Schmieg

Nancy Pelosi is truly not very intelligent but she is a very good politician. That is part of the problem with this gaffe. She automatically answered with her talking points without first clarifying what it was she had been asked. And I am amazed at the amount of press attention she is getting. Who ever heard anything about Denny Hastert? In less than a month we have had more about Pelosi than we did in 12 years about Hastert.

Lit Vin & Ink

Well, he decided to kill himself alot!

All suicides are considered extremely dangerous becasue if they are going to kill themselves, someone els may not be that important.

Poloium or whatever is Polish.



They said "plutonium"-why am I not surprised?

One of the things that interests me most in this story is the bad reporting.

They can't even get the characteristics of polonium correct. I can point you to articles that say exactly the opposite things about its most basic properties.

Then you can read eight or eighteen evaluated....

There was an expert who put out a bulletin yesterday saying he would answer any questions as polonium poisoning was an area of nuclear medicine that he studied. I don't think anyone took him up on it.

When you consider a significant percent of the population still believes most everything the press reports it gets down right scary.

Tom Maguire

In other, related news - FDL's TRex is betting against Althouse in the Althouse v Greenwald/Sullivan Texas Chain Cage Death Match.

TRex is, lest we forget, a self-described pussy - judging from his enraged blogging about yet outward calm when in the physical presence of Ann during the election night blog party.


Here's a link. For context on the (normally not acceptable) "pussy" comment, TRex leads with a photo of two felines squaring off.

And to reassure us of his non-luminescence, TRex writes this:

Well, clearly I need to get out more. When I asked last night whether or not the Talibangelical Christians in the world deserve to be known as "Christians", I had no idea that this discussion had already caught the drapes and burst into flame over at Glenn Greenwald's place.

That only makes sense if you read it as "Christianists", but presumably sense is not what he is trying to make.



Cecil – Still angling for the Shia tilt?

Looks like a goodly number of Shia don’t want our “help” – they don’t even want Maliki to talk to GWB. It’s fairly obvious that one of the few things that the Shia and the Sunni in Iraq agree on is that they want us to leave.

I would be very surprised if AQ wasn’t in Iraq at this point (especially in Anbar) – chaos and terrorism go together like red beans and rice – and I would bet that the Iraqi Sunnis are quite happy to accept any ally they can get at this point. It was AQ and Saddam that didn’t have any ties, but I’m sure the logic of “…the enemy of my enemy…” has altered things a bit by now.

Besides, I’ll bet the Sunnis in Iraq have other allies as well. Don’t you wonder what that little meeting between Cheney and the King of Saudi was about? I’m fairly confident that the Saudis don’t want a Shia dominated state on their northern border, so I’ll bet there was some fairly strong persuasion being applied against a Shia “tilt”. IIRC, both AQ and the Saudis “assisted” the Muslims in Bosnia – so why should we be surprised that both are supporting the Sunni’s in Iraq?

Would we rather have an Iraq dominated by Shia Iran or an Iraq dominated by Sunni Saudi Arabia? I’m fairly certain you would like to call false dilemma and answer “NO” to both, but tell me, how can our military presence create a state in Iraq that can avoid outside domination if not outside control? How long should we stay to achieve a goal that appears further away now than it did three years ago? How long?

Bonus question: Does AQ’s support of the Sunnis trump the geopolitical question?


Well, if the Rs have any fight left in them, the next target should be Rangle. His comments about the military should be used as a justification to force him to step down as head of Ways and Means (since they approve all federal tax incentives for military personel).

Let the drum beat begin!



What about that investigation of one of Harman's staffers? Where did that go? Heck Harman and Pelosi seemed sympatico back then.

Tom Maguire

If this is a secret sin, remind me never to confess a deep, dark secret to you. SECRET TO WHO?

Hmm, I have been having trouble keeping secrets lately.



roanoke, a couple of days ago the staffer (Hannauer)submitted an affidavit denying any contact with the press and Hoekstra allowed hm back.


UK further narrowing down plane trail:

Latest details on the routes of the planes the UK is checking:"

British Airways said they had been advised the risk to public health is low.

Passengers from the following flights are being asked to come forward: • BA875 Moscow-Heathrow on October 25 - aircraft number GBNWX • BA872 Heathrow-Moscow on October 28 - aircraft number GBNWX • BA873 Moscow-Heathrow on October 31 - aircraft number GBNWB • BA874 Heathrow-Moscow on November 3 - aircraft number GBZHA

The flights would have each been carrying up to 200 passengers"


Cite for above:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=419497&in_page_id=1770&ct=5>Narrowing focus

Cecil Turner

Cecil – Still angling for the Shia tilt?

If you define "Shia tilt" as favoring the majority-Shia elected government, then yes. But recognizing the insurgency is in bed with Al Qaeda is pretty darn basic, and no sensible policy can derive from denial. The WSJ editorial hit it pretty well today (even better than the companion VDH article):

As for the talks with Mr. Maliki, let's hope Mr. Bush resists the pressure he will face from some Arab leaders (and his own State Department) to push Mr. Maliki to make concessions to Baathist and Sunni Islamist insurgents. Such tactics have been tried a number of times in recent years, with no discernible reduction in the insurgency.
That failure in turn has fed suspicions among the majority Shiites that the U.S. would secretly prefer that Iraq be led by a new Sunni strongman. Jordan's King Abdullah didn't help matters recently by hosting Harith al-Dari of the Sunni Association of Muslim Scholars--a terrorist front group--only days ahead of the Bush-Maliki summit.

One reassuring sign is that the President fingered Sunni extremists as the root cause of the violence during his press conference yesterday in Estonia: "There's a lot of sectarian violence taking place--fomented, in my opinion, because of the attacks by al Qaeda causing people to seek reprisal." The point here is to define who the main enemy in Iraq continues to be, and that is the Baathist and al Qaeda insurgents. They are the source of the car bombs that continue to go off in Shiite neighborhoods and that have inspired Shiite reprisals. The undearly departed Musab al-Zarqawi's explicit strategy was to fan such sectarian attacks precisely so the Americans would lose patience and leave.

I would be very surprised if AQ wasn’t in Iraq at this point (especially in Anbar) . . . It was AQ and Saddam that didn’t have any ties . . .

That first wouldd seem to be a fairly safe bet, since the late unlamented Zarqawi was openly claiming to be the Iraq franchise of Al Qaeda since 2004 (and of course was in-country since before the invasion). The second part is less convincing, since even the 9/11 Commmission didn't claim "no ties," and in fact listed several, with the disclaimer "but to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship." That's a bit hard to reconcile with later developments, and openly disputed by some who ought to know.


Powerline points out that Ethan Wallison has a piece up about Nancy the Botox Babe at Real Clear Politics this mornings. It seems to contradict some of the things Greenwald says about her based on Wallison's past interactions with Nancy. Ethan must be wrong because Greenwald never never is or at least never admits it.




Good greif you have got to keep up. Sheesh.

Bonus question: Does AQ’s support of the Sunnis trump the geopolitical question?


AQ has been in Iraq since BEFORE we invaded. Remember, oh what was his name, oh yeah, ZARQAWI?

AQ does not SUPPORT the sunni in Iraq. AQ is fighting its own war to keep democracy from taking hold in Iraq. It has successfully created all this chaos which is being aided and abetted by Syria and Iran.

It was AQ, TT, that blew up the shia sacred shrine of the Golden Mosque! Before that point sectarian violence was kept under control.

TT, you read as if you don't READ the news or anything much except talking points re Iraq. I don't know why I bother responding to your idiotic comments.

And for your edification the majority of sunni tribes in Anbar are FIGHTING al Qaeda and want them out of Iraq.

So your assumption that AQ is in Iraq because of the violence and bloodshed is BACKWARDS. AQ created the mess!



The Baathist sunni insurgents are NOT the same as al Qaeda in Iraq.

Cecil Turner

The Baathist sunni insurgents are NOT the same as al Qaeda in Iraq.

The question is whether they're working together. I'd submit they obviously are.


The fighters in Iraq:

al Qaeda, formerly led by Zarqawi, now by al-masri

Baathist and sunni insurgents

Criminal elements

The shia SADR followers and militias. Not all shia in Iraq are SADR followers.

Sunni tribes (outside of Baghdad) who support the insurgency.

The Iraqi military

The Iraqi police

The Americans


The methods used in Iraq:

Car bombs (majorly al Qaeda)

IEDs used by insurgents.

Kidnappings: almost everybody uses this tactic, but al Qaeda not so much anymore. Now kidnappings are mainly for murder (shia) or ransom (sunni, shia, criminals).

Who supports who:

al Qaeda supports al Qaeda (Syria allows foreign fighters to cross into Iraq and may be supplying them.)

sunni insurgents (may be assisted by Syrian baathists as well) support themselves.

Tribal sunni fight only in their own territoy. Supported originally by insurgents, now are siding with the Iraqi military (and the Americans) to rid their territories of al Qaeda and foreign fighters.

Criminals are supported by kidnappings.

Shia militias are supported by Iran.

The Iraqi police are infiltrated by the shia militias (SADR) and have no or very few sunni members.

The Iraqi military are supported by the govt and the Americans and bad elements are weeded out when found. A problem, but not nearly as big a problem as the police. The military has actually been doing quite well.

As for the Iraqi government, Maliki's support comes from the SADR shia side. He has no power without them.
So who is everybody fighting?

Baathists are mostly gone or laying low in Syria directing traffic.

Sunni insurgents are laying IED's against the Americans and hitting shia when they can.

al Qaeda blows up anybody it can--mainly civilians. It doesn't much care WHO dies. The more chaos the better.

SADR shia are hitting sunni in retaliatory strikes. These shia really blew their stacks after the Golden Mosque was bombed and haven't stopped since.

The sunni tribes are hitting al Qaeda.

And, everybody, please note that al Qaeda is still responsible for much of the violent death occurring in Iraq--and these attacks have nothing to do with 'civil war'.



The question is whether they're working together [al Qaeda and insurgents]. I'd submit they obviously are.

I submit it is not obvious at all and they are NOT. Perhaps the insurgent groups should be named and located. They are not all the same and there are many areas in Iraq. It is possible that in a couple of areas they could possibly be working together but I rather doubt it is widespread. In fact, from what I've read, they are rivals for resources.



Sure your not talking about Heather Wilson? She looks like Plame's pal on the committee. Air Force like Plame's dad at NSA, domestic political group investigations by Congress, NSA Plame investigating domestic political groups.

It looks like Plame complained to her and she followed up. I wonder if she talks to the new Director at MI6 and maybe MI5?

Her names Wilson too! It would be nice to see who really ran the deals for women on the directorships and world leaders, but it may be a better movie than 'Our Man Flint.'


I would be very surprised if AQ wasn’t in Iraq at this point (especially in Anbar) .

Wow. They've been there for years.

It's interesting how the left wishes to either dismiss or minimize al-Qaeda's presence in Iraq.

Pelosi argues that they are there because we are there. If we pull out, they'll leave.

And go where, Madam Speaker?

Moreover, acknowledging the presence of al-Qaeda in Iraq undermines the line that Bush needs to leave Iraq and go after the perpetrators of 9/11. I.e., Afghanistan.

Umm, the group that has declare war on us - and we have declare war on in return - is in Iraq.

It will be interesting if (when?) we pull out of Iraq what will happen in Afghanistan. My guess is that al-Qaeda will then turn its attention there.


Cecil Turner

It is possible that in a couple of areas they could possibly be working together but I rather doubt it is widespread.

Foreign fighters need local assistance to operate (in logistics, if nothing else), and they're obviously getting it. It's impossible to know the exact extent, but it appears considerable (a point made by many analysts). And yes, there are several different insurgent groups, though several (including Al Qaeda in Iraq) claim to be working together:

In early 2006, al-Qaeda in Iraq posted an internet statement saying it had joined five other insurgent groups in Iraq to form a new umbrella organisation, the Mujahideen Shura Council.

Two of these groups were known - the Victorious Sect Army and the Islamic Jihad Brigade, while three were apparently new groups.

The Mujahideen Shura Council issues statements and posts videos on a website - including a video showing the executions of two Russian hostages in June 2006.

Analysts say moves to build co-operation and a unified strategy among the disparate insurgent groups have had some success.

How deep the cooperation runs is of course open for debate.


Why are you telling us? Tell Pelosi! %^)



Great Primer. I'm keeping it. Thanks!

Bill in AZ

When we leave and turn out the bright light in the holy bug zapper called Iraq - well, what do bugs do when you turn off the light? They head for another light source - maybe Afghanistan, or very possibly the US. Maybe if we explained it that way to Pelosi she would understand.




lurker, it's clear that the Dems are not used to like actually being interviewed...usually journos just lick their slippers..(Did you see how furious CLinton and Frank were because Wallace actually asked questions?) I hope Pelosi is interviewed a lot. Also Rangel and Conyers and McKinney and Waters..all of them as a matter of fact.


Bill in AZ is still trying to sell the islamobogeyman
nonsense. Yeh, Bill, you "explain" that to Pelosi would ya. I am sure your vividly imaginary world view will be welcomed at a time like this.


Hahaha! The more they are interviewed, the more they make fools of themselves.


Did you read what Shirley said about those flying imams?

What an idiot!


Toast note (Madam Speaker, too):
US military reports 7,000 Al-Qaeda captured or killed in Iraq in the past two years alone (Link).


billy missle

Nancy Pelosi is truly not very intelligent but she is a very good politician.Posted by: Florence Schmieg | November 29, 2006 at 12:34 PM
Well Florence..I couldn't have said it better.. I lived in SF for 28 years and I can't recall how many times I voted against Nancy..But a few times..
Do NOT underestimate her..She is shrewd and a pol of the 1st degree. You think this stuff bothers her? get real! Bay area politics is hard core and you folks think by her not picking the obvious hurts her cred? oh god..help us. The spin is her friend. Just be aware..She is an excellant politician and hastings and harman is play school to this woman..I ( total minority ) could not expell her from being our Rep.
Let's see how you all do in the next 2 years..( oh god bring us thy scandal ) just kidding............Not.


How about this one for Pelosi, Clarice?

Zawahiri's Prediction

Does Chirac have any spine?

Obviously Pelosi doesn't do enough research.


The level of shia violence against sunni is certainly now under question. "Police Capt. Jamil Hussein" is the source of quite a few of the most lurid of these stories, and if he is a fake, then the actual level of violence may be more like Crips vs Bloods than civil war.


He is the Greg Packer of atrocity stories. But that's just the beginning--the Mashadani gent bears the same name--surprise--of two of the key informants the fake Haditha story massacre was based on.

Lots of people have that name of course, but I suspect it's a surname common among Baathists ..it sure shows up in lots of suspicious tales.


Looks like th emilitary and Iraq MOI are out to expose these propaganda sources. AP is certainly fighting them. That must mean they're on to something for sure.


As awful as Alcee Hastings is, hasn't anyone noticed that Jane Harman is almost as bad? Yes, she was sensible and trustworthy 2 years ago. But when Pelosi started tightening the screws, she went into Democrat mode and leaked sensitive info. When the going got tough, this woman went squishy. Her moral compass is badly out of whack!


She was even at her worst far better than most of the moral pigs in her party.



I am with you, she may have been better but what is that?

I just can't wait when the dems eventually come out in favor for the program that was not started by Bush, and assure us they have done everything to make sure it does not violate our civil rights now (IE. they didNOTHING, joke, farce) and then argue it's in our national interest this program continue.

Was the biggest (and the swift leak) joke of a CONCERN of the year.

Greenwald will weep. Or eat many, many words in his cult manifesto.


I've got to wonder if Joe Wilson is caught up in this somehow. Is it possible he's blackmailing Pelosi into not backing Hastings? Maybe he has pictures of her with the body of Vince Foster.

Hey guys, just checking into see what you think about 2008. What's your take on McCain? I think he's a big fake. This seems like a Romney crowd (I mean that as a compliment, I think he's the best of the bunch). How about Rudy?


"little miss, little miss, can't be wrong" -- Spin Doctors

Charlie Burke

Jane Harman is an agent of AIPAC. That's why so many are whining that she should be reappointed. Pelosi knows better. Democrats need to be more balanced. Catfight? No, that demeans the Speaker-elect. Imagine male speakers being accused of cattiness? AIPAC's girl, Jane Harman is a mature woman--but Speaker Pelosi is off their reservation, hence, "just like a woman".


Charlie, Charlie--At election time every Dem running for major office is an agent of AIPAC..It's only when the lights are down and the cameras off that they fly to Syria with hot tips for the enemy or smooch with Arafat or whichever thug replaces him.


Enjoyed the characterization of Steve Clemons as a "left of center blogger", because while he may push he and his New America group are centrist I all too often have gotten the impression they lean left. I say this as someone who has talked with him and attended many of New America events. Good people but the left of center is definately.

Appalled Moderate

Seeing some of the comments -- talking again about how the media exaggerates Iraq, I thought I would look at some Iraqi blogs, to see how the people in Baghdad are viewing life there. I picked some posts at random:

Here, it seems the militias (sunni and shia) are treating otheres as dead flies .

A brief post here about the blogger's second kidnapped brother

Here we have reflections on whether Iraq is in a civil war, and the assassination of an Iraqi comedian.

For variety, a local poet spins this out.

Please do not delude yourselves on the state of Iraq because you don't like the new stories you are reading. If you dislike what the news media is telling you, take some time and find out what the Iraqi people are saying without the media filter.

(My selection, btwm, was random. I excluded only a guy who was based in Sweeden -- not Iraq -- and a websitew in Arabic.)


>The methods used in Iraq:

Car bombs (majorly al Qaeda)

IEDs used by insurgents.

Kidnappings: almost everybody uses this tactic, but al Qaeda not so much anymore. Now kidnappings are mainly for murder (shia) or ransom (sunni, shia, criminals).

Syl, you missed the biggie:

US media manipulation/propaganda


AIPAC's girl, Jane Harman is a mature woman--but Speaker Pelosi is off their reservation, hence, "just like a woman".

Sorry you can't see The difference in mature behavior, Charlie. I'm all for women sharing power, but some of the recent ones, like Reno and Allbright, have been unmitigated disasters. Pelosi's history is young, but she shows great potential of joining that pantheon.


That is a fascinating Real Clear article. It supports the Coffey Cult theory here:

There was an air of cultishness that always hung over the core group. Backers such as Lloyd Doggett, an intensely creepy Member from Texas, would occasionally phone out of the blue to marvel at Pelosi's abilities, perhaps after she had "unified" Democrats on one issue or another. Unlike other Congressional leaders, Pelosi seemed to have actual followers. Her inner circle was cliqueish and insular. And its members were suspicious of outsiders, people who had failed to grasp the significance of what was happening.

And it makes it perfectly clear that Ms. Pelosi is deeply attuned to media management. (Surprise!)

Ellers Ellison "Ellsberg" McWilson

Jealous much?

Glenn Greenwald has had his statements engraved on the door of the Senate, has twelve law degrees, and is author of the New York Times Best Selling Book “How Would A Pelosi Act?” His offhand comments to his dog often become front-page stories on most major newspapers in the country. And he has the most-read blogs on the Interent, or indeed the history of civilization, after just 9 days of blogging. I love how all you super-important rightwing bloggers attack me, I mean him, just to get traffic.

I bid you GOOD DAY, sir

M. Simon

I can see the headlines already:

"Impeached Judge Smears Pelosi"

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