A Worrisome Decision

It is simply un-American to be unconcerned with due process and the rights of the accused. That’s a given.  However, in the arena of crimes against humanity, the regular court system has often proved inadequate to the task of prosecution.  While military tribunals and special courts like the one at Nuremburg aren’t perfect, and are [...]

No Place For “Truthers” In High Positions

I’m not a thought control kind of guy, but anyone who has accused the federal government of treason, as 9/11 “truthers” have essentially done, is not a person that needs a high-level job with that same federal government: A top environmental official of the Obama administration issued a statement Thursday apologizing for past incendiary statement [...]

A Debate President Obama Can’t Afford To Lose

No, it’s not health care – but rather the war in Afghanistan: A majority of Americans now see the war in Afghanistan as not worth fighting, and just a quarter say more U.S. troops should be sent to the country, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. Most have confidence in the ability of [...]

My Take On The Obama Speech

First of all, it was a major speech, obviously.  Some notable bullet points: (1) Obama did not use the word terrorism or any variant in the entirety of the speech.  That can only be deliberate, one presumes to avoid fanning the flames considering the primary audience was intended to be the Arab public. (2)  The [...]

Hell, No, Gitmo Won’t Go!

Marc Ambinder has an interesting take on the revolt of the Senate when it came to closing Gitmo: As usual, administration officials won’t concede that the overwhelming Senate vote against funding to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay was a defeat for the president’s agenda.  In Obama World, every short-term defeat is a long-term opportunity. [...]

Congressional Hypocrisy On “Torture”

UPDATE 05/15/09: I’m taking the rare step of bumping this post back up top, as there has been a lively give and take in the comments and the Nancy Pelosi angle has thrown this story into high relief… __________________________________________ It’s been well-established from newspaper reports, including work by the NY Times (wrong – I misremembered, [...]

…And Speaking Of Insufferable…

How about that Andrew Sullivan?  The most overrated, overpaid, and overexposed blogger on the planet has decided he’s had enough of Barack Obama and has tagged him with the ultimate epithet – wait for it – neocon (gasp!).  I kid you not.  From the overexcited one himself, from a post so brief I can’t excerpt [...]

A Big Move In Afghanistan

President Obama has upped the stakes on the AfPak front with his dismissal of the old-school commander in Afghanistan and his replacement with a Petraeus-style counterinsurgency expert.  Fred Kaplan says the move definitively makes this Obama’s war now: Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced this afternoon that he has “asked for the resignation” of Gen. David [...]

An Inconvenient Poll

Let’s see now – regarding the use of coercive techniques on terrorist suspects – otherwise known as the torture debate – this is going to put a bit of a damper on the “try Bush for war crimes” parade: A new national poll indicates that most Americans don’t want to see an investigation of Bush [...]

Obscured By The Torture Debate…

…is the fact that most Bush administration policies on the War on Terror have been continued by the Obama administration.  Now, in and of itself, that doesn’t prove the policies are right, but it puts vehement critics of Bush who were in rapture at the thought of the coming of Obama in a bit of [...]

Is Osama Dead?

That’s the conclusion of Pakistani intelligence services, anyway…at least, before bursting the bubble and admitting there is no evidence at all: President Asif Ali Zardari said Monday that Pakistani intelligence believes Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden is dead but acknowledged they had no evidence. “The Americans tell me they don’t know, and they are much [...]

The Most Alarming Headline You’ll See Today…

…is not related (or at best only very tangentially) to the seemingly endless torture stories that are currently inescapable, but rather this: Taliban Advance: Is Pakistan Nearing Collapse? The move by Taliban-backed militants into the Buner district of northwestern Pakistan, closer than ever to Pakistan’s capital of Islamabad, have prompted concerns both within the country [...]

Another Chance To Praise Obama

My posts have leaned more critical than complimentary lately, so I’m glad of finding an issue where I share President Obama’s stance again.  This time, it’s Afghanistan: President Barack Obama plans to commit to sending 4,200 more troops and hundreds more civilians to Afghanistan in a speech at the White House on Friday morning, and [...]

The Long View

As the Hamas conflict nears the end of its third week, there are signs that a ceasefire (at least a temporary one) may be imminent.  Sooner or later, of course, a ceasefire will come, even if this one doesn’t hold.  What then? No current conflict seems more intractable than the Israeli-Palestinian logjam.  The two sides [...]

One Of Those Days…

Lots of news today, but nothing that excites me to comment much. Hillary Clinton to engage Iran and Syria? Fine, but as we’ve seen from North Korea, nations with bad intentions can play nations with good intentions like a fiddle.  I’m going to be watching this with great skepticism. Citigroup to break up?  Okay by [...]

Obama’s Early Days Pleasing…To Republicans

What a delicious irony it would be if Barack Obama, the Democratic answer to eight years of the hated Bush, ended up having a higher approval rating among Republicans than Democrats!  Now, I don’t really believe that’s the case – actually, rank and file Democrats are quite confident that Obama will be a good president [...]

Krauthammer On Gaza

I suspect that many of you will take issue with Charles Krauthammer’s tone here, but I have a question after the excerpt: Late Saturday, thousands of Gazans received Arabic-language cell-phone messages from the Israeli military, urging them to leave homes where militants might have stashed weapons. – Associated Press, Dec. 27 WASHINGTON — Some geopolitical [...]

I’ve Seen This Movie Before

Stunning, isn’t it, how quickly the anti-Israel segment of the left goes into outrage mode whenever conflict breaks out in the long-running, tedious conflict between Israel and Hamas…here’s the pattern: 1.  Radical group bent on destruction of Israel engages in clearly war-worthy provocations (kidnapping soliders, firing missiles into Israeli towns). 2.  Israel responds, as any [...]

Betrayed, Part Two!

One of the challenges that will face Barack Obama, sooner rather than later, is that moment when the rest of the world realizes that he will operate, by and large, in the framework of his predecessors.  America will not change its strategic goals overnight, if at all: for example, in an Obama administration, much to [...]

The Palin Interview: One Big Gaffe, But Not A Fatal One

That’s the inference I draw from the excerpts I have seen online, and the reaction pieces from various media outlets.  I did not see the interview.  Some described it as ‘tense’, ‘awkward’, and similar phrases…and many noted she seemed to be too heavily scripted.  I do know that she blew the Bush Doctrine question…for those [...]