"Libby doesn't want it to be inferred that his talks with Judith Miller about the NIE were improper. He doesn't want it inferred that he thought he could lie because he believed reporters would refuse to testify. He doesn't think Valerie Plame's covert or non-covert employment status, or any damages she may have sustained, are relevant to the trial."* amy:
"150,000 U.S. Troops Now in Iraq* amy:
This comes as the United States is increasing the number of troops on the ground. There are now 150,000 troops inside Iraq – the largest number since January."
"Report: U.S. Predator Drone Carried Out Airstrike in Pakistanbad amy. it wasn't an airstrike. it was a 'raid'.
In Pakistan a mass funeral was held on Monday for up 80 people that were killed in an airstrike at a religious school near the Afghan border. The Pakistani government has said its own military helicopters carried out the attack but ABC News is reporting the bombing was actually carried out by a U.S. Predator drone. Sources tell ABC that Al Qaeda’s Ayman al Zawahiri was the intended target. Pakistan is denying the ABC report but it has admitted it relied on U.S. intelligence to carry out the bombing."
UN Official: New U.S. Military Commissions Act Violates Int’l Treaties* kevin:
A top United Nations expert on human rights says the new U.S. Military Commissions Act violates international treaties protecting detainees. The official, Martin Scheinin, said one of the most serious aspects of the law is the power of the president to declare anyone, including U.S. citizens, without charge as an 'unlawful enemy combatant.” Scheinin also deplored the denial of the habeas corpus rights of foreigners - including legal, permanent U.S. residents - to challenge the legality of their detention. He said this is in contradiction with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, a treaty the U.S. ratified in 1992.
"The reason, of course, is that it's solely Republicans who have spent the past few months trying to rally their troops with their laughable Pelosi-as-Grim-Reaper demagoguery. But as Steinhauer knows perfectly well, the truth is that Pelosi is only a symbol of partisan divide to the extent that Republicans have insisted on trying to make her one for their own purely partisan reasons. (Namely, that it's all they've got this election cycle.) In the real world Pelosi has gone to extraordinary lengths to present a moderate face and a moderate agenda."* via froomkin:
""HANNITY: How important is getting Osama bin Laden in the war on terror?hysterical
"BUSH: Well, it's important, and that's why we're after him every single day. But so is getting Zawahiri important, and so is getting the number-three guy, whoever he is when they pop up. You know, we've got this guy, Zarqawi. ."
"So we don't torture -- but what we mean by torture is classified.
How can that possibly be acceptable to the American people?
Here are some questions that should be asked of every White House official, until they answer:
* How do you define torture?
* Name some interrogation techniques that are clearly illegal. Name some that you consider legal.
* Do you think it's acceptable, for either domestic or international consumption, not to define what you mean by torture?
* What sorts of interrogation techniques are and are not acceptable for use on our troops or intelligence agents?"
"Historian and critic Garry Wills writes in the New York Review of Books: "Bush promised his evangelical followers faith-based social services, which he called 'compassionate conservatism.' He went beyond that to give them a faith-based war, faith-based law enforcement, faith-based education, faith-based medicine, and faith-based science. He could deliver on his promises because he stocked the agencies handling all these problems, in large degree, with born-again Christians of his own variety."
And, Wills writes: "There is a particular danger with a war that God commands. What if God should lose? That is unthinkable to the evangelicals. They cannot accept the idea of second-guessing God, and he was the one who led them into war. Thus, in 2006, when two thirds of the American people told pollsters that the war in Iraq was a mistake, the third of those still standing behind it were mainly evangelicals (who make up about one third of the population). It was a faith-based certitude.""
* someone's president speaks:
"Well, I think this: I think that if you don't think we're in a war that you can't win the war."