Tag Archives: egypt

Crazy like a Fox headline

One of these is an actual Fox Nation headline from earlier today.

Did you figure out which one is real? It’s this one. It’s hard to parody these fools.


They say the second 9/11 is easier

This was too good to pass up. The op-ed professionals at the Washington Examiner had to weigh in on the embassy violence. It wouldn’t be patriotic of them to remain silent while the rest of us were piling up dead bodies. Picking through smoking rubble. DNA testing the remains.

It’s the sequel. “9/11: Muslims Never Sleep.” Vote Rudy Giuliani in 2016.


The beaucoux eye-queuex of the Wall Street Journal

Time for the Wall Street Journal to weigh in on the latest Romney shambles. Sniff, snort, publish. Roll over, order room service.

Whatever the timing of the Cairo Embassy’s statements, Mr. Romney is right that a U.S. Embassy ought to ignore YouTube videos produced by obscure cranks. As Tuesday’s events showed, pandering to Islamists who would use the video to inflame anti-American sentiment isn’t going to stop the protests.

So when the Cairo delegation smelled smoke in the wind, their official response should have been “Bring it on, motherfuckers.” None of these editorial geniuses has ever been posted abroad I’m thinking.

His political faux pax was to offend a pundit class that wants to cede the foreign policy debate to Mr. Obama without thinking seriously about the trouble for America that is building in the world.

Mitt Romney’s political “fake peace.” That is precious. I figure our president being a Kenyan ipso blackto confirms his desire to kiss Arab ass. You guys really showed the pundits who the smart ones are. Most of the goats on Murdoch’s farm eat tin cans, but some are used for fire prevention.

Speaking of horny, Ann Althouse. You politic-snots just can’t stand it, can you? It makes you jealous when a candidate tries to win.

There was an opportunity to go for the win, and Romney took it. The media noticed, of course, and sprang into such intense, concerted action that it was obvious that they knew it was a day to be won and if the other side was going to go for the win, they had to act quickly and ensure that their guy won the day.

But today? It’s Thursday. Today Ann won.


Republican foreign policy analysts reject Mitt Romney’s attacks over ambassador’s death

I’m no fan of Buzzfeed’s writing. Or much of anything else they do. But if they’re accurately reporting Republican reaction to Mitt Romney’s criticism of Obama after the death of our Libyan ambassador, Mitt better do something. He might shamble his way back to a microphone pretty quick.

Mitt Romney’s sharply-worded attack on President Obama over a pair of deadly riots in Muslim countries last night has backfired badly among foreign policy hands of both parties, who cast it as hasty and off-key, released before the facts were clear at what has become a moment of tragedy.

This was Romney last night: “I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American consulate worker in Benghazi,” he said. “It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.”

Romney keyed his statement to the American Embassy in Cairo’s condemnation of an anti-Muslim video that served as the trigger for the latest in a series of regional riots over obscure perceived slights to the faith. But his statement — initially embargoed to avoid release on September 11, then released yesterday evening anyway — came just before news that the American Ambassador to Libya had been killed and broke with a tradition of unity around national tragedies, and of avoiding hasty statements on foreign policy. . .

“They were just trying to score a cheap news cycle hit based on the embassy statement and now it’s just completely blown up,” said a very senior Republican foreign policy hand, who called the statement an “utter disaster” and a “Lehman moment” — a parallel to the moment when John McCain, amid the 2008 financial crisis, failed to come across as a steady leader.

That one’s anonymous. But maybe you’d like a name. How about Bill Kristol?

“I guess we see now that it is because they’re incompetent at talking effectively about foreign policy,” said the Republican. “This is just unbelievable — when they decide to play on it they completely bungle it.”

More and more:

“It’s deeply unfortunate when the circumstance of the statement becomes the story,” said Rick Perry’s former foreign policy adviser, Victoria Coates, who is now an adjunct fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, and who suggested that Romney should simply have “gone earlier rather than save it for midnight” to avoid appearing to play politics on September 11. “It’s unfortunate that it’s playing out this way, and hopefully they can get back on message, because their point is sound,” she said.

Other conservatives were less sympathetic.

“It’s bad,” said a former aide to Senator John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign. “Just on a factual level that the statement was not a response but preceding, or one could make the case precipitating. And just calling it a ‘disgrace’ doesn’t really cut it. Not ready for prime time.”

A third Republican, a former Bush State Department official, told BuzzFeed, “It wasn’t presidential of Romney to go political immediately — a tragedy of this magnitude should be something the nation collectively grieves before politics enters the conversation.”

The third Republican did support Romney’s essential message after disparaging the timing and politics of it. Romney however isn’t interested in whatever these foreign policy experts have to say. He’s lagging in his campaign for the presidency with only eight weeks to go. So this morning he doubled up on the attack:

“I also believe the administration was wrong to stand by a statement sympathizing with those who had breached our embassy in Egypt instead of condemning their actions,” Romney said, echoing a provocative statement the campaign released late Tuesday night. “It’s never too early for the United States government to condemn attacks on Americans and to defend our values.”

Before violence broke out, the Egyptian consulate commented on the growing controversy by denouncing anti-Muslim rhetoric [see here]. After the deaths, the consulate re-posted the comment, but the administration disavowed it. Instead, both the President and the Secretary of State issued statements strongly denouncing the killing. Romney knows this but chooses to ignore it. Because he’s desperate. What a sad campaign.

Incidentally, did you see Vladimir Putin yesterday thank Mitt Romney for calling Russia “our number one geopolitical foe”? He said Mittens made Russia’s case for opposing the missile defense shield. Well played, foreign policy expert.


Libyan ambassador killed in violent protests; Romney calls Obama administration response “disgraceful”

An internet film made by an Israeli American real estate developer from California and promoted by Koran-burning pastor Terry Jones of Florida has sparked violent protests in Egypt and Libya. An attack on the Libyan embassy in Benghazi yesterday killed the US ambassador and three others.

Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens was killed Tuesday night when he and a group of embassy employees went to the consulate to try to evacuate staff. The protesters, angry over a film that ridiculed Islam’s Prophet Muhammad, were firing gunshots and rocket propelled grenades. All of the officials — three in all — hold senior security positions in Benghazi.

The President condemned the violence.

“I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens,” President Obama said in a statement Tuesday morning. “Right now, the American people have the families of those we lost in our thoughts and prayers. They exemplified America’s commitment to freedom, justice, and partnership with nations and people around the globe, and stand in stark contrast to those who callously took their lives.”

In Egypt, protestors climbed the embassy walls in Cairo and tore down the American flag. It was replaced with one exalting Muhammad. Mitt Romney seized upon the mayhem and death to criticize the Obama administration.

“I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American consulate worker in Benghazi,” he said. “It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.”

Romney was referring to the Egyptian consulate’s response to the growing controversy before the violence broke out. They “condemn[ed] the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims.” GOP chairman Reince Priebus similarly attacked the president, albeit personally. Priebus charged that Obama “symapathize[d]” with the Egyptian rioters.

The Obama campaign shot back, calling the Republican criticism ugly politics:

“We are shocked that, at a time when the United States of America is confronting the tragic death of one of our diplomatic officers in Libya, Governor Romney would choose to launch a political attack,” Obama’s campaign press secretary Ben LaBolt said in a statement.

The “movie” that started this mess is essentially anti-Muslim trash. It’s a low-budget green-screen affair that portrays Muhammad as an idiot and his followers as homicidal child-molesting pagans.

The movie, “Innocence of Muslims,” was directed and produced by an Israeli-American real-estate developer who characterized it as a political effort to call attention to the hypocrisies of Islam.

At least some of the movie, when it’s not calling Muslims gay donkeys, is sympathetic to Egyptian Coptics. After clips of it were dubbed into Arabic and redistributed online, the protests began.


Just another drunken Texas congressman

Louie Gohmert. Watch him weave his way from Obama on the ’08 campaign trail, through the number of states in the OIC, past Egypt and the Muslim Brotherhood, to stumble upon the shame of “people who wants to destroy our country.”

Is he really that stoopid? Or stone drunk? Absolutely. I am reminded of his comments, two years ago, on The Great Cats And Rare Canids Act. It provided money to countries making efforts to preserve their endangered species. He complained:

We are still borrowing money from the Chinese. And, once again, the irony here is incredible. We are going to borrow more money from the Chinese to possibly give them money back to create habitats for wild dogs and cats that are rare.

There is no assurance that if we did that we wouldn’t end up with moo goo dog pan or moo goo cat pan. There is no way to assure that money will not be wasted when it’s sent to foreign countries.

And throw away perfectly good Moo Goo Bobcat? Never.


National Review’s Andrew McCarthy sneers at the Arab world

Aren’t people all alike? Like the Eskimos, for instance — they’re all alike. Mexican people, all exactly the same. The Blacks, the Jews, whatever. The Arabs too. The Arabs especially.

An Ill Season
The Arab spring unleashes Islamists on Egyptian Christians
Andrew C. McCarthy | National Review | May 14, 2011

Screaming “With our blood and soul, we will defend you, Islam,” jihadists stormed . .

These are typical Arabs. Who, like dogs, should stay leashed.

. . burned the nearby homes of two Copt families to the ground, attacked a residential complex, killed a dozen people, and wounded more than 200: just another day in this spontaneous democratic uprising by Muslim hearts yearning for freedom.

Muslim hearts and freedom — that is rich. Since when do Arabs do anything but kill people?

In the delusional vocabulary of the “Arab Spring,” this particular episode is known as a sectarian “clash.” That was the Washington Post’s take.

Stupid Washington Post. Arabs will attack you, idiots.

The thugs in question were Egyptian Muslims. Were they representative of all Egyptian Muslims? No, but it would be more accurate to portray them as such than to suggest, as the Pollyanna narrative holds, that Egypt (and Tunisia, and Yemen, and Syria, and Lebanon, and Algeria, and …) is teeming with legions of Gamal al-Madisons.

Wisconsin Arabs? Very funny Andy. They’re serial killers, we get the point.

This is the Egypt where the toppling of the pro-American, pro-peace Mubarak regime was celebrated by the rape of CBS correspondent Lara Logan amid the familiar chants of “Allahu Akbar!”

Then they’re raping people. And killing them — because they’re Arabs.

The same Egypt where, just a few weeks ago, Islamist factions wiped out the proponents of democracy by a whopping 78–22 margin in a referendum on the formation of a new government. The result ensures a Muslim Brotherhood hammerlock on the new parliament, and perhaps even the presidency . .

Who let them vote? Damn! Killer Arabs.

The provocation that stirred Muslims this time, as if there had to be one, involved a rumor that Copts are preventing a Christian woman from converting to Islam — and who wouldn’t grab the blowtorch over that?

Typical. Fucking. Arabs.

That didn’t stop enraged Muslims — rage being the default condition . .

…of the killer Arabs. You get the picture.


The regimes are dropping like flies in the Middle East

First, it was the end of President Ben Ali in Tunisia. Next, it was . . seemingly everybody . .

Have the people of Tunisia changed the face of the Middle East?
Xavier Zapata | BBC | Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Last month an unemployed young man set himself on fire in Tunisia, and the flames appear to have engulfed a region. Officials wouldn’t let Mohamed Bouazizi sell vegetables without a licence, and his desperate act triggered an upsising that toppled the government of President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali. Since then we’ve seen a dramatic chain reaction, as people across the Arab World have protested against what they see as authoritarian and oppressive rule. Events have been moving at breathtaking speed . .

In Egypt:

Mubarak Says He Will Not Run for Presidency Again
Reuters and AP with CNBC.com | Tuesday, 1 Feb 2011

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said on Tuesday he would not leave Egypt although he would step down from the presidency at the end of his term, due to end when the country holds a presidential election in September . .

He also said pledged to implement a series of reforms, including calling on the judiciary to combat corruption, one of the complaints of protesters who have pushed him to announce an end to his presidency later this year.

In Jordan:

Jordan’s King Dismisses Government Amid Protests
By HASSAN HAFIDH and FARNAZ FASSIHI | Associated Press | Feb 2 2011

AMMAN—Jordan’s King Abdullah II fired his government and named a new prime minister who he said would be responsible for enacting “true” political reforms, the latest in a handful of moves announced Tuesday across the region that appeared aimed at tamping down growing popular anger at political and economic malaise.

On a day that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak faced hundreds of thousands of angry protesters with a pledge that he wouldn’t seek re-election, leaders around the region took steps to hold on to their own power.

In Yemen:

Yemeni president vows to step down after term, as protests spark changes across Arab world
Haretz | 2 2 2011

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, a key U.S. ally against Al-Qaida, said on Wednesday he will not seek to extend his presidency in a move that would end his three-decade rule when his current term expires in 2013.

Eyeing protests that swept Tunisia’s leader from power and threaten to topple Egypt’s president, Saleh also vowed not to pass on the reins of government to his son. He also appealed to the opposition to call off protests as a large rally loomed.

The unrest grows in Syria:

Syrians called to join in anti-government protests
Peter Cave | ABC.net | Mon Jan 31, 2011

Syria looks set to join the growing list of Middle East regimes facing mass, anti-government demonstrations . .

Organisers have begun circulating leaflets and messages on the internet demanding freedom of speech, human rights and economic reforms and they are asking demonstrators to rally outside parliament house in Damascus, the Syrian capital.

The strict authoritarian government of Syrian president Bashar Assad has already broken up attempts to rally outside the Egyptian embassy and has begun deploying troops in the northern city of Aleppo ahead of planned protest rallies there.

. . and in Algeria:

The Revolution Continues – Unrest in Algeria, Jordan
Erin | Africana Online | January 31, 2011

Algeria, another northern African nation, has also been inspired by neighboring Tunisia and is seeing massive protests. More than 10,000 protesters marched against authorities in Algeria’s northeastern city of Bejaia on Saturday in the country’s largest rally yet. Demonstrators marched peacefully in the city, chanting slogans such as: “For a radical change of the regime!” RCD leader Said Sadi, whose group organized the rally, said, “The protest gathered more than 10,000 people.” The police were out but the protesters dispersed peacefully. In Algeria, as in Egypt and Tunisia, residents are growing frustrated with rising costs and unemployment. Three-fourths of Algerians are under 30. Most of them do not have jobs or apartments, despite the fact that the state assets are full with money from oil and gas exports . .

After riots broke out earlier in the month that left five people dead and over 800 injured, Algiers responded swiftly by reducing the prices of oil, sugar and other basic necessities which had risen sharply. The government also assured citizens that subsidies on essential goods like flour would continue. But, longtime President Abdelaziz Bouteflika is supported by a corrupt circle of military officers and secret police and his assurances did little to calm the unrest in the country. Similar to Tunisia and Egypt, more residents are using public suicide in an effort to protest the government. Within the past two weeks, eight people have set themselves on fire, most jobless and desperate.


No crystal ball needed: Glenn Beck is blind to the future

“The truth has no agenda, but the media does.”

Gee, I wonder in which of the truth/media camps Fox’s multi-million dollar man thinks he resides? Glenn Beck got off a real corker of a rant yesterday. Unhappy to keep feeding his nervous audience the same line of fears, as substantial as they are, he’s now detailing the disintegration of the entire political world. [. . having now seen the clip a second time, he’s actually predicting the end of global civilization (below).] He tore it to pieces and threw it before mindless, rapacious superpowers far out of the menial control of the likes of you or me. I suppose it would be wise to believe they’re surely coming for us.

Here are the subjects Beck avows are involved with or predictors of the events currently unfolding in Egypt and rippling across the planet:

–Mohammed ElBaradei
–The Obama administration
–The Iranian Revolution
–Progressive activists
–The Weather Underground
–Bill Ayers
–Bernadine Dohrn
–The flotilla to Gaza
–Turkish Islamists
–The Muslim Brotherhood

Those are only the conspiratorial forces he exposes in the first two minutes. After that, it’s time for Glenn to give his viewers the concrete answers to all of the following:

–“What’s going on”
–“Why we went to war in Iraq”
–What of “The coming insurrection”
–The future of the Middle East
–The futures of the major political players on the planet
–The futures of the continents of Earth

That’s all:

As Steve Benen quotes Beck:

“I believe that I can make a case in the end that there are three powers that you will see really emerge. One, a Muslim caliphate that controls the Mideast and parts of Europe. Two, China, that will control Asia, the southern half of Africa, part of the Middle East, Australia, maybe New Zealand, and God only knows what else. And Russia, which will control all of the old former Soviet Union bloc, plus maybe the Netherlands. I’m not really sure. But their strong arm is coming. That leaves us and South America. What happens to us?”

Yes, what happens? Will I live?

Any problem with that take? Well, sure there is. Glenn Beck’s not just a predictor of crazy, he’s a predictor of wrong. He doesn’t get it right, he never gets it right, he’s never even close. By any measure, Glenn Beck stinks at predicting where the teeming world will be in a year or two. So far, he has a 100% track record of being mistaken on the side of chaos, conspiracy, apocalypse, and mass death.

Witness a video of his I uploaded 2 years ago (thank you, Crooks and Liars) where he predicts the complete unraveling of Mexico with dire consequences for America. Yeah, he tries to tell you that this is just his gut feeling, but it’s identical in rationale and tone to his subsequent predictions, including the whoppers above. It’s so perfectly a reverse-xeroxed take that Beck’s seed crystal of the End of Days — Archduke Ferdinand — makes the same ominous appearance [11:21 above, 0:42 below].

Holding Beck’s recent behavior in mind, upon watching the clip, what hits you isn’t that Glenn would now think he misfired on predicting a struggling Mexico collapsing with shocking consequences for the American Southwest. It’s more likely he went wrong in telling the camera he could be wrong. Mexico is, after all, only one country, no big deal. Contrast this with yesterday’s epic take where he calls the perhaps destinies of virtually every major power in the world. Right or wrong, though it’s always the latter, he no longer gives in to the hesitations we see here:

“There are too many things going on in Mexico that nobody is paying attention to, and we’re going to. Because I just have this gut feeling that . . this could be the final lightning bolt in the perfect storm.”

His previous shows were merely practice for what Glenn’s doing now. If he has either become too messianic or too professional to be qualified, who will protest the difference? Like his tears, Beck no longer needs a single excuse.


Quick on the hair mousse and rouge, slow off the tongue: hot and cuddly Douchetown fascist

Ooh, those pretty, pretty eyebrows. He’s like some sort of heavenly cross between Richard Grieco and John Bolton. He’s all dream-y, and invade-y, and then, once you give it up to him in the back seat of your tangerine Scion xB, he kills your whole famile-y. My, how Jason is knocking the pantyhose off all “the ladies” over at Human Events, aka “their 99% male subscribers.”

Gee, Jenny, why I’d do anything to get near spike hair, skull-and-bones. What? A video? Where? At humanevents.com: “Leading Conservative Media Since 1944”? Well hurry, CLICK IT!!


Did you see him LOOK at me? HE LOOKED AT ME! RUN!


Just as we predicted, torture has destroyed our ability to prosecute detainees

New York Times:

Legacy of Torture
EDITORIAL | Published: August 26, 2010

. . Because federal judges cannot trust the confessions of prisoners obtained by intense coercion, they are regularly throwing out the government’s cases against Guantánamo Bay prisoners.

A new report prepared jointly by ProPublica and the National Law Journal showed that the government has lost more than half the cases where Guantánamo prisoners have challenged their detention because they were forcibly interrogated.

The report details how the use of torture abroad, with the silence or assent of the U.S., and the use of George W. Bush’s ‘Enhanced Interrogation Techniques’ in American facilities have produced a multi-tentacled legal monster, gumming up or destroying case after case against detainees, some of whom are probably legally responsible for crimes against Americans.

Judges have found it impossible to be sure of the detainees’ confessions given the circumstances under which they were obtained.

The government’s case for keeping the Guantánamo Bay prisoner locked away seemed airtight. He had confessed to overseeing the distribution of supplies to al-Qaida fighters battling U.S. forces in Afghanistan, even describing the routes where pack mules hauled the packages.

But a federal judge rejected Fouad Mahmoud Al Rabiah’s confessions, concluding that he had concocted them under intense coercion.

So insidious and long-lasting are the effects of torture that virtually all subsequent confessions become suspect as well:

Al Rabiah

Even statements that the government insisted Al Rabiah had made under noncoercive, or “clean,” questioning were tainted, U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ruled, and she ordered that Al Rabiah be released.

The government has lost eight of 15 cases in which Guantánamo inmates have said they or witnesses against them were forcibly interrogated . .

To wit:

Government lawyers didn’t contest that [Saeed Mohammed Saleh] Hatim, while held for six months at a U.S. military base in Afghanistan, had been beaten repeatedly, kicked and “threatened with rape if he did not confess to being a member of the Taliban or al-Qaida,” according to U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina’s opinion. Instead, they submitted confessions he gave after arriving at Guantánamo, under cleaner questioning. But Urbina found that Hatim’s confession was “tainted by torture” and ordered that he be released. The government is appealing the decision.

Does any of this surprise anybody? I doubt it. And the negative legal reach of torture isn’t trivial, moving well beyond the cases of the victims:

Last year, Justice Department lawyers tried to show that Farhi Saeed bin Mohammed was an al-Qaida fighter by using statements from another detainee, Binyam Mohamed, whose “harrowing” interrogation ordeal was described in an 81-page opinion by Senior Judge Gladys Kessler.

Binyam Mohamed, now free

For two years, beginning with his capture in April 2002, foreign interrogators holding him “at the behest of the United States” beat and kicked him, chained him to a wall, kept him half-standing for long stretches and cut him with a blade, including on his genitals. He was “fed information” and “told to verify it.” During that time, he was also interrogated by the FBI and CIA.

The government’s lawyers didn’t contest the allegations of mistreatment but instead argued that the treatment of the informant didn’t undermine the evidence he gave later . .

But Kessler didn’t buy that better treatment had done the trick. Given that, “throughout his detention, a constant barrage of physical and psychological abuse was employed in order to manipulate him and program him into telling investigators what they wanted to hear,” she wrote, it was “more than plausible” that he had also manufactured details in nonabusive questioning.

So, even with American handlers, under reasonable treatment, making statements against somebody else, the evidence is still junk.

Didn’t we all know we’d end up here? I think so.

If you’re considering the use of torture, you’re going to have to change completely the character and habits of a nation in order to be honestly successful. Good nations produce good legal systems. When the use of torture becomes apparent, the system rejects the ‘evidence,’ and the cases die. It’s predictable. Otherwise, you’d have to become Saudi Arabia or Egypt to rack up many wins. It looks bad now, but the tossing of so many cases is actually good news.

Oh, and haven’t the predicted verdicts come in against shortsighted Dick Cheney and his boss, George W. Bush, as well? Losers.