Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Morning copy 12.07.2005

The war over the war in Iraq

Saddam Hussein's trial resumes today, without Saddam.

But, this is the real Big Story today. Dan Murphy of the Christian Science Monitor:
Privately, half a dozen US officers have acknowledged to the Monitor that prisoner abuse by Iraqi police is common.
The Washington Post ledes coverage of V.P. Dick Cheney's speech yesterday with his quote that keeping our "nerve" is key to the Iraq mission. The New York Times ledes with the V.P. citing a "strategy for victory."

President George W. Bush and other GOP leaders have rebuked DNC Chair Howard Dean for saying the U.S. cannot win in Iraq, Los Angeles Times.

"Diamond" Jim VandeHei and Shalaigh Murray in the Washington Post:
Several Democrats joined President Bush yesterday in rebuking Dean's declaration to a San Antonio radio station Monday that "the idea that we're going to win the war in Iraq is an idea which is just plain wrong."
Bush's speech at 10:45 a.m. EST will focus on economic success in Iraq, A.P. via ABC News. This may require some "fact check" work.

"Fair and balanced" OpinionJournal republishes Donald Rumsfeld's speech from Monday on Iraqi, military and American optimism. This is not the 1850s. People do not need newspapers to publish three day old speeches so readers can thumb through the latest point-counter-point of the Lincoln Douglas debates.

Thanassis Cambanis in the Boton Globe on Ayatollah al Sistani:
Iraq's Shi'ite clerics repeatedly emphasize that they reject the approach of Iran's ayatollahs, who dominate almost every aspect of politics and society. But Sistani's inordinate influence over political life in Iraq indicates that Iraq's Shi'ite religious leaders intend to keep the government under their control, at least indirectly.
Al Qaeda's number 2, Ayman al Zawahiri, calls on insurgents to unite against the United States and attack oil facilities, A.P. via USA Today.

The Hill reports on Rep. Mike Ross (D., Ark.) and his notes from a White House meeting in 2002:
“‘Does not want to put troops in harm’s way. Has WMD. Trained terrorists on WMD. … If military force is used it will be fierce, swift and tough.’” Ross recited the notes for The Hill recently, then looked up incredulously. “Swift? This is the end of 2005!”

David Lightman in the Hartford Courant reports that Senator Joe Lieberman moved to try and end partisan bickering with a "war cabinet", but that the idea was stopped by Democratic Leader Harry Reid. It is possible that George W. Bush will mention Lieberman today, as Cheney did yesterday. Note this simple graf from Lightman:
The reaction was a new, vivid indication of the miles that separate Lieberman and his own party on Iraq.
Bloomberg News: "Paul Wolfowitz's role as the architect of the Iraq war is shaping up to be one of the great disappearing acts in Washington."

The Des Moines Register profiles the 224th Engineer Battalion, which battles IEDs as well as insurgents and is heading home for Christmas.


Ronald Brownstein, in the Los Angeles Times, writes about the potential for a series of Western primaries for the Democrats that would usurp Iowa and New Hapshire as the first voice in the election. The Manchester Union Leader writes that N.H. Governor John Lynch has lobbied successfully for Hillary Clinton's backing of a first primary in the Granite state. (Iowa is a caucus.)


Nobel prize winner Mohamed El Baradei says there is no "smoking gun" to prove that Iran seeks a nuclear weapon. IranMania: "He also admitted that, for 18 years, Iran had a nuclear program that the IAEA failed to detect, Jerusalem Post reported."

Tony Blankley, in the Washington Times, writes:
My, how time flies. This week Mohamed ElBaradei, the chairman of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), confirmed Israel's assessment to the British liberal newspaper the Independent, and stated that if Tehran indeed resumed its uranium enrichment in other plants, as threatened, it will take Iran only "a few months to produce a nuclear bomb."
Condoleezza Rice

The New York Times writes about the credibility gap between what the Bush administration says and what Germans (many of them at least) are believing.

Todd Richissin of the Baltimore Sun reports: "Condoleezza Rice admitted that the United States had mistakenly abducted a German citizen as a terror suspect, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said yesterday."

The GOP base... and the GOP

Some Christian conservatives are upset with the White House for wishing them a "happy holiday" instead of a "merry Christmas", Washington Post.

Alexander Bolton in The Hill reports that some social conservatives are upset with Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R., Tenn.) for not pushing their agenda. One said:
“They didn’t have anything that we saw as family votes,” he added. “Sometimes it seems like we got more done during the Reagan administration when [Republicans] didn’t have control [of Congress] or during the Clinton administration when we didn’t have the administration on our side. There is a level of frustration especially among our grassroots.”
The Los Angeles Times: "Arnold Schwarzenegger's political base rising in revolt" as the Governator moves toward the center.

Mary Curtius of the Los Angeles Times on a new GOP immigration bill:
Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis.), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, said his bill would tighten border security, require all businesses to verify that their employees are in the U.S. legally and increase penalties for those using illegal workers.

The White House supports those moves. But Sensenbrenner's measure ignores Bush's repeated call for creating a guest-worker program that would temporarily legalize the status of millions of workers who are in the nation illegally.
The New York Times reports that the White House and Senator John McCain (R., Arz.) are near a deal on McCain's torture amendment. A fragment of note: "administration officials concede that Mr. McCain's provision, which would also require a uniform standard on how to interrogate detainees, stands a strong chance of becoming law, despite a White House threat to veto any legislation containing it."


Blogger Bassizzzt said...

Howard Dean is the epitomy of the term "foot in mouth."

I pity the Democratic Party for having to suffer under the poor usage of words from their so-called "leader."

Bottom line, Dean should be a bag checker at Wal-Mart and nothing more.

5:30 PM  
Blogger copy editor said...

Maybe something in junior management?

He's got a real tin ear for politics sometimes.

The problem with him as DNC chair is that it was a quick fix to more difficult problems in the party. Sure, he brings some cachet with liberal groups, but what good does that do when your party fundamentals are weak?

5:37 PM  
Blogger A Christian Prophet said...

Democrats as well as everyone would certainly benefit from honesty in the news media. The Holy Spirit's message on The Christian Prophet blog today indicates that there are many, many more positives than negatives in Iraq and elsewhere that just are not being reported.

5:48 PM  

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