Thursday, October 19, 2006

fallen soldiers

* wapo (for Noise):
" "Long after both President Bush and Osama Bin Laden are gone from the scene, our successors-in-interest will look at this wretched law in particular, and the events upon which it is based, and wonder why Congress dramatically loosened the Bush Administration's legal leash at this time rather than severely restricting it.

"Reasoned voices will then ask: What did the White House do between 9/11/01 and 9/11/06 to earn the trust and added authority that the Congress now has given it? What did President Bush do along the terror law front since the Twin Towers fell to cause Congress to place so much faith in him and his Administration when it comes to tiptoeing the tightrope between security and freedom?

"The answer to these questions is nothing. So far, some legal experts say, the Bush Administration's track record when it comes to exercising unbridled power has been lame. To put it less mildly, as some legal experts have, it is actionable. Over and over again, they say, the executive branch has deceived Congress and the courts. Over and over again, the Administration has oversold its terror cases. Over and over again it has tried to hide its errors under the veil of 'national security.'""

* soto:
"There are serious problems with pursuing a partitioned Iraq, aside from the imperial arrogance of the United States being the latest western power to assume it has the right to dictate Iraq's future. But simply put, in order to make the unified state theory work at this stage would require the United States to double the number of troops in Iraq to disarm the militias and simultaneously suppress Al Qaeda in Iraq and the Sunni insurgency to a degree that would allow a central government to gain its footing. We don't have that number of troops or political support for that, nor will we under this president. Even if we did, this assumes that the Shiites and the Kurds want a central government to gain such footing in the first place.

But if we will not be able to overcome the militias and the Sunni insurgency militarily, then shouldn't we move straight away to pursuing the political solutions that this administration has ignored for over three years now. Certainly there are flaws in the three-state solution as well as things to recommend it, and dealing with Turkey's resistance to a Kurdish state and providing the Sunnis the economic and security resources necessary to form their own region are at the top of the list. But doing nothing under either a "stay the course so they don't follow us over here" or "stand up/stand down" shifting rationale is no longer acceptable, if it ever was."

* it looks like October will be the worst month for dead am.grunts in iraq. i'd like to note that there's one change in the reporting that i do like - we never hear about the 'fallen' any more. that 'fallen' thing used to drive me mad. now it's just the mass murder & death & lies that i have to worry about.

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