Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Morning copy 10.12.2005

Harriet Miers' nomination is in serious jeopardy based on this New York Times story:

[L]awyers for the Republican senators on the Judiciary Committee are expressing dissatisfaction with the choice and pushing back against her, aides to 6 of the 10 Republican committee members said yesterday.

"Everybody is hoping that something will happen on Miers, either that the president would withdraw her or she would realize she is not up to it and pull out while she has some dignity intact," a lawyer to a Republican committee member said.

BUT, Bush and his people are stuborn, especially about one of their own. This could get intense.

The National Journal broke this yesterday afternoon about the CIA Leak investigation:

In two appearances before the federal grand jury investigating the leak of a covert CIA operative's name, Lewis (Scooter) Libby, the chief of staff to Vice President Cheney, did not disclose a crucial conversation that he had with New York Times reporter Judith Miller in June 2003 about the operative, Valerie Plame, according to sources with firsthand knowledge of his sworn testimony.

Follow up on the ammendment to the Iraqi constitutional process, AP report:

A special session of parliament was called for later Wednesday evening to vote on a last-minute breakthrough on the constitution reached by Shiite, Sunni Arab and Kurdish powerbrokers, reviving hopes of winning Sunni support for the charter at the polls.

Times of London follows up on the British Army's Basra raid:

THE British Army expressed “regret” last night for its controversial raid on an Iraqi police station to free two SAS soldiers last month.

It offered to pay legitimate compensation for casualties and damage caused during the September 19 raid in Basra and undertook to “deal with” British troops involved in the raid if they are found to have transgressed. It also promised to try to avoid any repetition of the dramatic events of that day, which caused a serious rift with local Iraqi leaders.

From a(n) historical perspective, what is going on in Basra and throughout Iraq is fascinating -- if it weren't so bloody and chaotic. (Western) Nation states trying to craft another (Arab, Persian) nation state in the midst of a multidimensional ethnic and religious conflict, with the broader 21st century war on terror thrown into the mix.

A new, gloabally minded, policy for African food aide is dying in the Congress. The Bush administration wants to pay African farmers to supply aide for the continent.

I don't agree with much of what Bush wants, but this is important. Only economic development in the region, letting the African farmers make some money and help their continent, has the potential to really help long-term.

The New York Times:

So why is this seemingly sensible, cost-effective proposal near death in Congress?

Fundamentally, because the proposal challenges the political bargain that has formed the basis for food aid over the past half century: that American generosity must be good not just for the world's hungry but also for American agriculture. That is why current law stipulates that all food aid provided by the United States Agency for International Development be grown by American farmers and mostly shipped on United States-flag vessels. More practically, however, it is because the administration's proposal has run into opposition from three interests some critics call the Iron Triangle of food aid: agribusiness, the shipping industry and charitable organizations.


Blogger zen said...

WTF?! The same president that has repeated the "no litmus test" mantra over and over and says that Miers was chosen because of her religious views. BS!

4:08 PM  

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