May 28, 2007

US Embassy In Iraq Confirms Text of Memo Is Real
— Ace

See Update V. Chad contacted the embassy and they say the notice itself is legitimate. I don't know if that means the PDF circulating around on the left is actually real, or, as it still seems to me, a mock-up using a hummel figurine as the US State Department logo.

Finally someone who is putatively on site in Baghdad says don't go to far on this the memo is real, and someone else (me) says I emailed the embassy this memo is real and I gave the e-mail to Ace for verification and it comes down to - well this is a disinformation operation.

Here is the email. I pulled my identifying info but that's all. Like I said Ace has a forwarded copy so he can verify it via headers or whatever.

From: Baghdad, Press Office [mailto:BaghdadPressOffice@state.gov]
Sent: Saturday, May 26, 2007 11:09 PM
To: Chad
Subject: RE: Question regarding a Washington Post story

Hi Chad,

These are great questions.

In short, the term “US Mission-Iraq” is how the military here generally refers to us; however, we at the Embassy simply call ourselves “the US Embassy” or, for the actual real estate on which we sit, “the Embassy compound.” As for the food-shortage notice, yes, it was a legitimate notice; however, food convoys have since begun to come in and we’re gradually getting back to normal.

Thanks for asking!

BAGHDAD PRESS OFFICE
U.S. Embassy, Baghdad
Email: BaghdadfPressOffice@state.gov
Web: http://iraq.usembassy.gov

The Black Republican offered a theory as to why a simple email was converted into a MS Word document (with hummel figurine logo), then converted into a pdf two days later:

Use of an eagle figurine is confusing. Why bother with it when your unit already has its own letterhead? Why even both making a .pdf when a simple e-mail message would do the trick?

Thank you, Dave - you've solved the mystery of the differing dates and differing file formats.

Col. Lang posted the document as a Word .DOC on 23 May, but the .DOC itself was created the same day as the date of the memo - 21 May. Whoever created the PDF took the same file Lang has (from the same or a similar source, or from his site) and used Word to convert it to PDF.

Why? Because the MS Word .DOC is an insecure file format commonly used to transmit worms. Only an idiot sends a Word .DOC over the Internet as an attachment. (And only an idiot opens a Word .DOC he finds on the Internet, but I decided to take one for the team on this.) The person who created the PDF was either unwilling or unable to transmit the .DOC (some networks are properly configured to prevent their transmission).

Now.... who would be sending that email with the PDF attached, and to whom?

Any bets that the WaPo server is configured not to accept .DOC files?

While Gleen Grenwald is crying vindication, it seems to me he's jumping the gun a bit. For one thing, among the possibilities I mentioned was that there was in fact a real memo, but the "memo" being circulated was not the actual memo itself, but a Microsoft Word created facsimile. I didn't want that to be the case -- I was hoping for full snookerage of the WaPo just for the embarrassment -- but it's a a little childish of Gleen to pretend that I denied that could be the case.

If it the memo is entirely real, well, I guess the US Embassy in Iraq apparently has difficulty finding its official logo, used hundreds of times per day, and must sometimes resort to doing searches for "American Eagle flag" and finding clip-art on amateur websites. That didn't seem to be a likely possibility to me, but who knows, maybe it's true.

Thanks to Chad for actually contacting the US Embassy.

Incidentally, Gleen claims that the right is just too unwilling to accept any bad news out of Iraq, thus causing us to go snipe hunting for forgeries.

That's silly. Even as I posted this I noted the WaPo had confirmed the basics of a delay in food delivery -- in fact, every tip I sent out to bloggers contained the words "Caution on Story" and the first lines stated, "The WaPo has confirmed the basics of convoy deliveries," while going to to suggest the memo itself circulated among the left was a fake.

My basis for thinking the PDF was fake was most assuredly not that I doubted there were delays in food transport -- in fact, I wrote (as others noted) such delays were commonplace, hardly rating a mention. My basis for thinking the PDF was fake is that it looked fake as all-get out, and that the "US State Department Logo" looked suspiciously, at first glance, like a Hummel figurine, a suspicion confirmed with a bit of Googling.

The fact is that the delays in food delivery were restricted to perishible fruits and vegetables, and even the WaPo article noted, grudgingly, in an update from an embassy staffer, that trucks had now arrived and were unloading food as he wrote. And now the convoy delay is entirely over. Like the initial quagmire in the Iraq invasion due to a sandstorm that lasted 24 hours, a short delay here (also due partly to weather) has been ginned up into an emergency threatening our troops' very lifeline of food.

For what it's worth, I still think the actual PDF is fake, as in "not the original, but reconstructed to look like the original." I really don't think that staffers in Iraq have to go looking on the Internet for State Department Logo Subsitutes.

The Left and the Media: Despite the left's frequent posturings as being deeply suspicious of "the rightwing media," it does seem that they're willing to accept anything from the media as presumptively accurate -- so long, of course, as it suggests doom and debacle for the US military. Even when a PDF is circulated the looks highly suspect -- including a cheesy hummel figurine eagle-and-flag as the official US State Department logo -- they seem to have absolutely no skepticism whatsoever.

Gleen is, of course, highly skeptical of any media stories suggesting the US military is improving the situation in Iraq. He fulsomely railed against Joel Klein for daring to report that Sunnis were uniting in Anbar against Al Qaeda and cooperating with the Americans in this effort, despite the fact that this has been reported by a welter of sources, including liberal-seal-of-approval CNN.

Did Joel Klein's report on the stabilization of Iraq include a bright, shining indicum of fraulence, such as a hummel figurine of an eagle? Of course not. Gleen simply rejected the story as being based on "anonymous sources" because he did not want to believe it. Despite the fact that many sources for this fact are not at all anonymous, including embedded journalist Michael Yon.

Gleen Wilson McEllensberg writes an awful lot about unhinged partisans refusing to accept any reportage that undermines their slapdash hyperpoliticized metanarrative; but, as they say, projection isn't just a river in Egypt.


Who Created The PDF? Apparently it was Parvaz Khan (khanp as the PDF cals him), a Human Resources Officer in the Embassy, says a source.

This source writes:

Why would the Human Resources Officer be involved with this matter?

...

Why were there two people, Khan and Martin, working on such a simple memo and not the actual people listed in the memo as having drafted and approved it?
And why was Lang leaked the Word document (created by Khan and last saved by Martin), while Johnson was given the PDF done by Khan?

And for the love of all that is good, why in the world were they using that damn figurine picture as a logo?

The bottom line here is that someone, possibly Khan, tried to stir up a controversy by leaking a mundane notice about what was eventually a non-existent delay in food supplies, and perhaps tried to dress up a fairly standard email that was sent around as a "memo".

I think most of you use email as part of your job every single day, and the prospect of the US Embassy in Iraq sending around Microsoft Word documents as email seems fairly ridiculous.

That there was a memo seems indisputable. What is considerably more disputable is that the silly-looking PDF circulated to the left is the actual memo. What it appears to be is a mock-up of an email, put into dumb-looking PDF format (with hummel figurine!), in order to gin up interest in the story.


Why were they using the silly hummel eagle as a logo? I'd guess because Parvaz Khan drafted this PDF from his home computer, where, presumably, he didn't have the actual State Department logo easily available as .jpg.

Seixon adds:

My editorial opinion is that someone decided to dress up a mundane email about possible food problems (that, by the way, never materialized) as a more scary-looking official memo.

Johnson jumped all over this as some sort of major deal that General Petraeus needed to apologize to his troops for, when in the end, it was a whole lot of nothing. That is the bottom line here.

Not to mention that the figurine-as-logo just reeks fake, and that the US military Public Affairs Officer in Baghdad said that the memo as presented by Johnson was a phony.

Indeed.

Posted by: Ace at 02:06 PM | Comments (479)
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May 27, 2007

A Memorial Day Toast
— Ace

...of which Flapy the Right-Wing Jingoist Warmonger Eagle would approve.

RedState has a roundup of Memorial Day observances, including one by Fred! and others by Michael Yon and BlackFive.

Jules Crittendon wants to know why the AP is pushing a big new "grim" Iraq casualty figure to celebrate Memorial Day, but they and the entire MSM seem unconcerned by casualties in Afghanistan.

The AP story leads with the number of new graves opened for dead American soldiers since Memorial Day last, but only those killed in Iraq. Why this slight? Are the dead in Afghanistan not worthy of respect in the eyes of the Associated Press? It is possible that this article is not about honoring the dead at all, or even about reporting the news, but just another thinly veiled editorial attack on the Bush administration? Would the Associated Press be so callous as to use American dead in this manner, as a political tool?


Memorial Day

A day upon which we observe the sacrifice of only those soldiers whose deaths can be used as political ammunition against Republicans.


Posted by: Ace at 11:35 AM | Comments (84)
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Tony Blair: Jihadist Suspects Permitted To Abscond By... Liberals and Left-wing Judges
— Ace

So who's to blame for allowing those (Which are special authorizations granted to the government to restrict one's liberties, such as requiring one to notify the authorities when one leaves one's home (and on what business), and permit what would otherwise be considered police harrassment through frequent surveillance.)

Well, according to Tony Blair, it's the God-damanble buffoons who continue insisting this is all some breezy parlor game:


After September 11, 2001, in common with many other nations, we passed new antiterror laws. In the aftermath of such an outrage it was relatively easy to do. We gave ourselves the ability, in exceptional circumstances, to detain foreign nationals who we believed were plotting terrorism but against whom there was insufficient evidence to prosecute. It was an important power. They were, of course, free to leave Britain. But we wouldn’t let them be free here. The ability to detain foreign nationals gave our services the ability to focus even more resources on the surveillance of British nationals who were a threat. It also sent out a strong signal of intent.

In December 2004 these laws were struck down by the courts. In his famous judgment Lord Hoffmann said there was a greater risk to Britain through the abrogation of the foreign suspect’s civil liberties than through terrorism.

So we were forced to opt for the much milder remedy of control orders, applicable to both foreign and British nationals. These do not involve detention. They impose some limits on the individual’s freedom. They are better than nothing and have utility - because otherwise the individuals would have to be subject to even more intensive surveillance.

They were, however, much weaker than we wanted, perpetually diluted by opposition amendments, constantly attacked on civil liberty grounds.

In addition, after September 11, and again after July 7, we have tried continually to deport foreign nationals who were either engaged in or inciting extremism. Again and again in court judgments we were forced to keep them here. The important point is that although of the hundreds we keep under surveillance, many are UK citizens - as with these three individuals - many are not and in any event their influence and the ideas they import from abroad have a significant and radicalising effect. And, of course, we lost the crucial vote on 90 days’ precharge detention, despite offering a week-by-week court hearing throughout the 90 days.

So when there is an outcry about the three absconding, we should remember that consistently over the past few years, and even after July 7, attempts to introduce stronger powers have been knocked back in parliament and in the courts. Indeed recently it was said, again in a court case, that unless the British government could prove that a foreign national suspect would not be at risk of mistreatment in his own country, we were obliged to keep him here.

So the fault is not with our services or, in this instance, with the Home Office. We have chosen as a society to put the civil liberties of the suspect, even if a foreign national, first.

I happen to believe this is misguided and wrong. If a foreign national comes here, and may be at risk in his own country, we should treat him well. But if he then abuses our hospitality and threatens us, I feel he should take his chance back in his own home country.

He finishes by knocking the "We caused it/it's all our fault/we deserve" League of Super-Patriots.

Posted by: Ace at 10:32 AM | Comments (16)
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It's Sunday, So Here Are Some Things
— AndrewR

My lack of a social calendar on this holiday weekend is your gain.

First up--My favorite newspaper is keeping tabs on the cutting edge work going on in today's research labs:

Sexual orientation and gender affects navigation skills, with straight men best at map reading and heterosexual women worst, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of Warwick considered how we perform mental tasks in light of sexual preferences, with straight men performing better at map reading than gay men who in turn perform better than lesbians, who in turn do better than straight women.

...

Gay men showed a more female-typical pattern of performance than straight men did, and lesbians showed a more male-typical pattern of performance than straight women did.

Ahh, science. We're not so different after all, you and me. You just don't make as many cheap shots about people getting lost because they're too busy looking for antique shops to read road signs.

In the interest of fair play, however, I'll add this:

As expected they found men outperformed women on tests such as mentally rotating objects, and matching angles, while women outperformed men in verbal dexterity tests, and remembering the locations of objects. So while men may be better at map reading, women are better at finding the car keys.

Which makes it sound like each half of the human race is each retarded in its own special way. Equality.

And speaking of retarded, there's a problem with Halo 2 for Vista:

In an e-mail statement sent to Next-Gen, Microsoft said, “It has come to our attention that an unfortunate, obscure content error which includes partial nudity was included in our initial production of “Halo 2” for Windows Vista. As such, we have updated the initial game packaging at retailers with a label, so customers are aware before purchasing the game. Additionally, we’ve developed an online update which can be downloaded from www.halo2.com to remove the content.

...

the ESRB e-mailed Next-Gen a statement that said a "photograph of an individual showing his bare backside" is accessible within Halo 2 Vista's exclusive map editor tool. Apparently, it pops up when an ".ass" error occurs.

h2v ass error.jpg

Via Bit-tech, which also has the skinny on the songs for Guitar Hero 3, if that's your thing.


Finally, Paul Newman is retiring.

Paul Newman says he’s given up acting.

“I’m not able to work anymore as an actor at the level I would want to,” Newman, 82, told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Thursday. “You start to lose your memory, your confidence, your invention. So that’s pretty much a closed book for me.”

Newman, star of such films as “Hud,” “Cool Hand Luke” and “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” added: “I’ve been doing it for 50 years. That’s enough.”

Ask people their favorite Paul Newman movie and they'll probably talk about Cool Hand Luke, Butch Cassidy, or The Sting. All of which are fine films.

My favorite, though? Shit, there's only one choice:


Finding clips of that movie that aren't dubbed into French is harder than you'd think.

Happy Memorial Day.

Posted by: AndrewR at 10:26 AM | Comments (19)
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Bush Ignored Warnings That Iraq Might Devolve Into Chaos, Except For The Long Debates About How To Deal With It Devolving Into Chaos
— Ace

...debates noted at the time -- in January '03, before the first of many grim milestones -- in the New York Times (Protein Wisdom link).

Goldstein wonders if New York Times reporters, currently pushing the claim that Bush was ignorant of and/or unconcerned by this likelihood, have access to their own archives, or are somehow prevented from reading them. Maybe they, too, are required to pay TimesSelect charges for the archives, and maybe like most Americans they've decided it just ain't worth it.

Posted by: Ace at 10:24 AM | Comments (9)
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Absolute Charitable Authority: Sheehan Organization Falsely Claimed Tax-Deductible Status In Grubbing Donations
— Ace

Well, in fairness, she's merely an expert on geomilitary affairs, not on the tax code.

And Hot Air notes that this isn't the first time Sheehan's rabble has failed to comply with the law. Paperwork is for the squares, baby. You hep?

She's also quit the Democratic Party over the war funding bill. Allah's bonus links round-up some Absolute Moral Authority Mania news I'd missed, like her pushing the "Truther" movement.

And speaking of Truthiness... Ro-Ro wows 'em in warming up The View audience. I'd say the pose that she's "just asking questions" is pretty much dashed.

Listen to the braindead audience coo over each of her deranged claims. It sounds like the courtroom in My Cousin Vinnie when the sherriff announces two men have been arrested with a .357 Magnum.

Ohhhhh-ooohhhhh....


Bonus: Media Embargoes Sheehan's Defection: Gee, they always seemed to think it deserved GINORMOUS coveraged when she acted as a useful, absolute-moral-authority catspaw against Republicans.

Why so quiet now? As of Newsbusters' last update, not a single MSM outlet has reported on Sheehan's publically-declared quitting of the Democratic Party.

Allah thinks this might just be due to the Memorial Day weekend. Bullshit. There's not a single reporter in all the MSM who finds this newsworthy? This isn't some piece needing a lot of hours of work; one only needs to quote from her own dKos entry and provide the background ("Ms. Sheehan is the mother of Casey Sheehan, a casualty of the Iraq War, who acheived prominence when...") that they've run six billion times before.

Posted by: Ace at 10:18 AM | Comments (16)
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May 26, 2007

Shock: Lindsey Lohan In DUI Car Crash; "Usable Amount" of Cocaine Discovered
— Ace

The shock is that she still had a "usable amount" of cocaine on her by the end of the night.

Alas, it's fairly unlikely she was wearing clean underwear at the time:

Lindsay Lohan was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence Saturday after her convertible struck a curb, and investigators found what they believe is cocaine in the actress' car, police said.

Lohan, 20, and two other people were in her 2005 Mercedes SL-65 when it crashed on Sunset Boulevard around 5:30 a.m., Sgt. Mike Foxen said. It appeared Lohan was speeding, Lt. Mitch McCann said at an afternoon news conference.

Officers at the scene found a "usable amount" of a drug tentatively identified as cocaine, McCann said. He declined to say where the drug was found other than to say Lohan was not carrying it.

Lohan, who spent time at a rehabilitation center earlier this year, was driven in another car to a hospital for treatment of minor injuries, McCann said. The two other people in her car were not hurt.

One of the passengers was taken into the hospital for observation. The second passenger fled and is sought for questioning. Police released this composite sketch of the absconded passenger:

Police do not have a full name for the suspect, but they believe his "street name" is "Flappy, the West Hollywood Cokewhore-Gigolo Bird of Paradise."

Posted by: Ace at 09:52 PM | Comments (57)
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WaPo Stays Mum
— Ace

Still no response from the reporter. Her refusal to comment is suggestive to me that she did in fact base her story on this absurd forgery.

Certainly if it was not based on such a shoddy hoax, she'd want to say so, eh?

Juan Cole, among the bazillion lefties who linked the shoddy document as legitimate, refuses to retract his claim, saying he "[doesn't] accept the reasoning" of LGF's posts (apparently he didn't bother clicking to mine):

Hey, Marc, it is not as if I have to reach for bad news coming out of Iraq. I'd love to have less.

I don't accept the reasoning of LGF about the memo, which may well have been put up with different formatting precisely in order to disguise the identity of the author.

The diction and facts of the memo struck me as similar to those people have sent me from Iraq.

I didn't link to it until Col. Pat Lang did. He is former head of DIA for Middle East. When he retracts, so will I.

cheers Juan
http://www.juancole.com

Hey, dickhead? What more "reasoning" do you need than this?

This is a fucking hummel eagle and flag figurine from a cheesy knicknack vendor, you fucking idiot. What additional "reasoning" do you need?

It's this Pat Lang character, a lefty buddy of Larry Johnson's, who's been passing this obvious sham around. Here's the bio from his own website:

Colonel W. Patrick Lang is a retired senior officer of U.S. Military Intelligence and U.S. Army Special Forces (The Green Berets). He served in the Department of Defense both as a serving officer and then as a member of the Defense Senior Executive Service for many years. He is a highly decorated veteran of several of America’s overseas conflicts including the war in Vietnam. He was trained and educated as a specialist in the Middle East by the U.S. Army and served in that region for many years. He was the first Professor of the Arabic Language at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. In the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) he was the “Defense Intelligence Officer for the Middle East, South Asia and Terrorism,” and later the first Director of the Defense Humint Service.” For his service in DIA, he was awarded the “Presidential Rank of Distinguished Executive.” This is the equivalent of a British knighthood. He is an analyst consultant for many television and radio broadcaststs.

So -- this DIA official, "Defense Intelligence Officer for the Middle East, South Asia, and Terrorism," recipient of multiple awards for his dilligence and capability in evaluating intelligence, could not tell that an already-fake-looking document made to look even more ridiculous by the inclusion of a frigging hummel eagle as its "Official Logo of the State Department" might not be on the level.

What kind of idiots do we have in our "intelligence" community, exactly?

When they give you an intelligence test, do they require you actually fail to get the job? Or at least post a not-too-high, not-too-low score somewhere between "average intelligence" and "borderline imbecile who sits in the corner all day clapping and masturbating"?

Thanks to MD for that.


Intelligence-community mascot
"Flappy, the Document-Authenticating Defender of Freedom,"
always reminding intelligence officers to stay vigilant
against being spoofed by forgeries.

PS: People are making fun of the Post in the article's comment section.

Charles Johnson has dubbed this "Hummelgate." Sounds good to me.

Bleg: On the chance Karen DeYoung has not yet become aware of this Flappy-flap, why don't you email her to inquire if the "internal memo" she based her story on included any Lenox china Defender of Freedom eagle hummel figurines?

Also, just for shits and grins -- anyone feel like doing a gif like LGF did with Rathergate, superimposing the "State Department Logo" over the figurine (with base included, rather than cropped out) so that the two images fade in an out from each other?

Perhaps Juan Cole needs that sort of additional "reasoning" in order to make an intelligent judgement.


The Actual PDF of the Al Qaeda Memo: I'll retract my claim that this is authentic only once Larry Prang or whatever his name is retracts his claim.

Thanks to Slublog for giving me that document which I, errr, already had from another source with AQ contacts.


Patrick "Larry Prang" Lang Responds: So, he circulates an obviously sham documents that fools the WaPo into running a story. Confronted with his childishly inept forgery, how does he respond?

Like so:


------ Forwarded Message
From: "Patrick Lang"
Date: Sat, 26 May 2007 23:18:45 -0400M

To: "xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Subject: RE: Food-shortage memo an obvious fraud.

Get the Washington Post To retract

Isn't that cute? He pushes a fraud to this gullible bint of a reporterette, now relies upon her regurgitation of his fraud as evidence his original fraud is in fact genuine.

By the way, he uses some gaywad cursive font in his email. I would duplicate it here for your evaluation, but all the lefties are already saying I'm a homo, and this font would just be used as further evidence against me.

I'm going to award Patrick "Larry Prang" Lang the coveted Ace of Spades HQ "Defender of Freedom" Award:


Flappy, the Defender of Freedom
Awarded upon this day, 26 May 2007,
to Patrick Lang, Super-Genius Level Document Authenticator
For Conduct Above And Beyond The Call
of Rathergate hoaxer Bill Burkett

Cherish it always, Patrick. Of course, I'm not really giving you the actual hummel figurine you stuck into your forgery. But you can buy yourself one from Lenox China for around $252.00, if I recall correctly.

Eh, what am I telling you for? I'm sure you know how much it costs, eh?


Another Response: Boy, these boy-men sure have some thin skin when their shoddy deceptions are revealed, don't they?

------ Forwarded Message
From: "Patrick Lang"

Date: Sat, 26 May 2007 23:22:01 -0400

To: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Subject: RE: Food-shortage memo an obvious fraud.

Can you prove it was not true? If you want to call me a lefty I will meet you anywhere.


------ Forwarded Message
From: "Patrick Lang"

Date: Sat, 26 May 2007 23:26:47 -0400

To: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Subject: RE: Food-shortage memo an obvious fraud.

Tell me where we will meet. Be prepared to remain there. Tell me where you live you yellow bastard.

That threat would read a lot scarier if it wasn't in that gaywad font he favors.


Thanks to a secret tipster again for those emails.

Posted by: Ace at 05:07 PM | Comments (222)
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16 Terrorists "Directly Linked" To May 12 Attack on/Capture of Our Troops Caught
— Ace

Ticking time-bomb time: the hypothetical Andrew Sullivan and John McCain say never happens in reality.

Torturer/killers know where our boys are. They already tortured and killed one of our troops; doubtless they have the same planned for the remaining two, if they haven't tortured and killed them already.

So: Shall we protect these nice fellers from harsh treatment and physical discomfort while our troops are getting drills through their hands and heated irons to their faces and genitals?

Is that "moral"?


U.S. and Iraqi troops have detained 16 people they say are "directly related to the attack" on May 12 in which three U.S. soldiers were apparently captured, a U.S. military official said.

The three men disappeared after insurgents attacked a U.S. military observation post in the Mahmoudiya area, in a stretch known as the Triangle of Death.

Four American soldiers and an Iraqi soldier were found dead at the scene of the ambush.

The body of one of the three missing soldiers was found floating in the Euphrates River on Wednesday.

An intense search continues near the river for the other two men, Spc. Alex R. Jimenez, 25, of Lawrence, Massachusetts, and Pvt. Byron W. Fouty, 19, of Waterford, Michigan.
...

On Friday, hundreds of soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment Stryker Battalion searched fish farms in a swampy area 11 miles south of Yusufiya, the military said.

They found 14 weapons caches and 3,000 pounds of explosives and ammunition, much of it buried in 55-gallon drums, the military said.

...

The location may have been a crossing point to transport the missing soldiers from one side of the river to the other, the military said.

Some poor brave soul at Al Qaeda just passed me the following memo:

UNCLASSIFIED

AL QAEDA DEPT. OF LOGISTICS & SUPPLIES

Document: 007-THX1138

The capture of so much of our ammunition and explosives will require cut-backs in the issuance of ordinance to jihadi fighters in the coming weeks. All AQ Customer Slaughter Representatives will be receiving one (1) magazine of ammunition and one (1) Merriadoc "Merry" Brandybuck shortsword from the Lord of the Rings collection, with which to kill infidels until the supply problems have been corrected. There are also a limited number of replica Glaives from Krull (first come, first serve).

Thank you for your patience, and your continued excellent work for the Al Qaeada Customer Slaughhter Team.


(signed)

MGPT/c Mohammad "Smitty" Abduallah
GXRPGOZINE/stm Fazzeel Abrahim Al-Tikrit (formerly Fazeel Abraihim Al-Short Hills, NJ)

Official Al Qaeda Department of Suppy & Logistics follows again to guarantee this document's authenticity.


Our beloved mascot,
"Flappy" the Jew-Eating Eagle

Posted by: Ace at 04:45 PM | Comments (24)
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UPDATE: WaPo Also Taken In By Fake Memo, It Seems
Larry Johnson Claims: Theater-Wide Supply Problems Mean Our Troops In Iraq Will Go Hungry

— Ace

Update! Story debunked by numerous sources all sharing the same IP address!

...


Larry Johnson, famous "intelligence agent," has the Super-Duper Scoop:

Some brave soul in the U.S. military sent Pat Lang a memo issued Monday that shows the U.S. ability to support its troops is collapsing and very vulnerable to disruption.

The memo states:

Due to a theater-wide delay in food delivery, menu selections will be limited for the near future. While every effort will be made to provide balanced meals, it may not be possible to offer the dishes you are used to seeing at each meal. Fresh fruits and salad bar items will also be severely limited or unavailable.

...

We don't have enough convoys to give our troops three hot meals a day. We want them to step up the patrolling. We want them to search 24-7 for missing soldiers. But, by God, they don't deserve three hot meals a day.

Excuse my rudeness, but that is fucked up. Way to go General Petraeus.

He ads this update:

UPDATE: I've received a note from a journalist buddy who say's that the US military Public Affairs Officer in Baghdad says this is a phony document. We'll see. I sure hope that is the case. But it does not undermine the basic point of the vulnerability of the U.S. supply line.

Ah. His basic point wasn't that it was "fucked up" that our boys weren't getting their three-square. It turns out, now that the document is revealed as a fraud, his basic point was about the general vulnerability of supply lines and that such supply lines could, hypothetically, be disrupted.

I wonder how on earth this scary-smart "intelligence agent" ever could have been taken in by a fraudulent document. I mean, after all, the thing sure looks real. I mean, hey. It's got an eagle on it!

Surely any document with an eagle on it must be genuine.

Serpent-Eagle.jpg
Bush Lied! Bush Lied! Ca-Caw! Ca-Caw!

Thanks to... Seixon, posting from beyond the blog-grave, a restless ghost still seeking vengeance on his one-time tormenter.


That Eagle Of Genuineness: I've searched throughout all Google images for "eagle" and I have not seen that image. So am I to conclude this is part of the standard document-dressing for the US army in Iraq, and yet it's never before appeared on the Internet?

If you blow up the image to 200%... well, I can't vouch for this, because the image gets too grainy at that size.

But it really doesn't look like a drawing. What it looks like to me is a picture of a hummel-type desk-statue of an eagle and flag.


Found The Image: Here. As part of the masthead for "CERT Los Angeles," which seems to be volunteer disaster-preparedness training thing.

It's not from a figurine site, but at this higher resolution, it does look even more like a figurine. I guess I got lucky as my second figurine search ("American Eagle figure") wound up finding it:

Eagle_on_American_Flag_Logo.gif

So, not a single instance of this image came up in any connection to a US military document.

It was, however, discoverable via a Google search for eagle images.

However, I can certainly see why genius super-spy Larry Johnson was taken in by the forgery.

It had an eagle on it! And furthermore -- an eagle with its talons around an American flag!

Gold standard, baby. Pretty much self-authenticating right there.

If anyone wants to keep searching for Eagle American Flag Figurine and variations on such, please, go ahead. I'd like to see precisely what knicknack and hummel vendor the US military is taking its eagle images from.

But I can't keep searching right now. I've looked at eight billion eagles already.


How The Retarded Forger Found The Image: It's on the very first page of a Google Image search for "Eagle American flag." Second row.


Got It: The little sucker was hiding from me.

But I found it:

lenox_china_kings_of_the_sky_no_box_P0000014682S0008T2.jpg

It's a Lenox China "Defender of Freedom" eagle figurine (scan down, click camera-icon for picture of the "Defender of Freedom."


Alas... While the "document" may be fake, it may be accurate. That is, a faked pdf that nevertheless accurately conveys the information in a real memo.

This WaPo story quotes from the "memo," which would fill me with joy that the WaPo's been punked, except for the fact than an embassy official in Iraq says that convoys have been backed up.

But does he really? Or is he simply accepting the Post reporter's "memo" as accurate and speculating as to what it would mean, if true? He never confirms the memo, note:

Instead of rice pilaf with turkey or fish -- Monday night's main entree, according to embassy spokesman Dan Sreebny, who said he topped it off with two cookies -- the staff would have to make do with military Meals Ready to Eat, freeze-dried concoctions with prescribed amounts of starch and protein, capable of withstanding parachute drops and remaining edible for three years after packaging."We've run out of some things," Sreebny said. "I miss my yogurt in the morning and my fresh-cut melon."

...

Sreebny, who said on Tuesday that the last supply trucks arrived in Baghdad two weeks prior, attributed the delays to paperwork problems on the border, traffic jams and "security issues." He said the embassy stocks three weeks of non-perishable food for use in the event of emergency, so no one was yet in danger of MREs.

...

In any case, American personnel assigned to the embassy are promised American food -- although Kuwaiti bottled water is acceptable.

"This has happened before, in terms of convoys," Sreebny said, although "this one may be a little bit longer than in the past. Then the food comes and we all gorge ourselves on apples and oranges and bananas again."

I dunno-- that document is fake. The military, I'm pretty sure, does not use pictures of Lenox China "Defender of Freedom" hummel eagles in its mastheads. And I sort of think it's a fairly major coincidence that this exact image is on the first page of results for a Google Image search of "American Eagle flag."

Surely the military has its own emblems and logos by this late date?

So I think that the document itself is fake-- and someone is attempting to gin up a rather minor convoy delay into something that threatens the feeding of our troops.

The Post article does in fact confirm there is a delay, but not that there is a theater-wide food shortage, nor that anyone's getting fed MRE's in base chow-houses. (The "memo" itself doesn't say this is happening, only that it might.)

It seems we either have a case here of fake but accurate, for real this time, or fake and also inaccurate, if the memo is entirely fake and forged to create the false impression of a serious delay in supply whereas none yet has occurred.


More... As commenters and Charles Johnson point out, while the document bears a date of "5/21/07" (which isn't the typical format for the date on official memos, I'm told), the pdf actually was created two days after the purported date:

Author: khanp

Created: 5/23/07 7:15:03 AM
Modified: 5/23/07 7:15:16 AM

Application: Acrobat PDFMaker 8.0 for Word

There are several possibilities here:

1) The PDF is completely genuine. This strikes me as so unlikely as to be hardly worth mentioning, but I'll toss ito out there as a possibility. In this scenario, the official issuing the internal memo could not find the proper eagle logo to put on the document, and so had to resort to a Google Image search for "Eagle American flag" to find a properly-patriotic and military-seeming logo. He came up with, it seems, a picture of a Lenox China "Defender of Freedom" eagle hummel figurine as the best possible method of branding his document as an official US memorandum.

2) The PDF is fake, but it is an accurate recaptiluation of the information found in the real memo, minus, presumably, the usage of a Lenox China "Defender of Freedom" hummel figurine as an official US military logo. Why this person did not merely fax or email the real memo is something of a mystery. Why take the genuine article and create a borderline-retarded forgery of it?

3) The PDF is fake, but the WaPo story is based on a real memo. The left is now circulating a crude forgery created by one of their goofier members in an effort to show they've got "sources." In this scenrio, of course, the left blogosphere's Fox Mulder-like "I Want To Believe" credultiy is underscored -- they'll believe anything so long as it casts Bush and the Iraq War in a bad light -- but the basics of the story are actually pretty much accurate.

4) The PDF is fake, and the WaPo relied on the exact same shoddy forgery for its story. This is a lot worse, of course -- if the WaPo is taken in by ridiculous shams like this, what precisely is the value of all this "painstaking confirmation and multiple-layers of rigourous editorial oversight" we've heard so very much about? In this scenario, a fairly routine delay of a convey has been trumped up into a theater-wide shortage of food by a comically amateurish forger who got his agenda right smack into Section A of the vaunted Washington Post. Slapdash, juvenile forgers: 1, the Washington Post's intitutional integrity and "multiple layers of rigourous editorial oversight," nil.

Which is it? Unless it's Possibility 1 -- what I'd like to call the "Retard Scenario" -- then either the left and/or the liberal MSM have a fairly major embarassment on their hands.

I've emailed the WaPo's reporter to inquire if it was this ridiculous hoax she relied upon in writing her story, or if she has a more plausible, less hummel-figurine-filled memo in her possession.

But I don't expect a reply.


More... I'll leave it to the expertise of Charles Johnson as to the exact implications of this:

Also notice that the PDF document is not a scan of a printed original, it’s editable text captured directly from Word. So this PDF file was created from a Microsoft Word document, two days after the date on the so-called “memo.”

Did the convoy delays also deplete the US military's stock of document-scanners, thus requiring the creation of this "original memo" in Microsoft Word two days after its puported date?

Posted by: Ace at 10:13 AM | Comments (262)
Post contains 1787 words, total size 12 kb.

Memo Proves: Valerie Plame Lied Under Oath
— Ace

A Fitzmas for the rest of us? Don't count on it.

In her testimony before the House, Mrs. Wilson said flatly, “I did not recommend him. I did not suggest him.” She told the House committee that a 2004 Senate report, which concluded that she had indeed suggested her husband for the trip, was simply wrong. In particular, Mrs. Wilson pointed to a February 12, 2002, memo she had written, which the Senate said showed that she had suggested her husband for the trip, and claimed that the Senate had taken the memo “out of context” to “make it seem as though I had suggested or recommended him.”

The 2004 Senate report to which Mrs. Wilson referred had quoted a brief excerpt from her memo. In the new report, Sen. Bond publishes the whole thing, and it seems to indicate clearly that Mrs. Wilson suggested her husband for the trip. The memo was occasioned by a February 5, 2002 CIA intelligence report about Niger, Iraq, and uranium. The report had been circulating in the intelligence community for a week by February 12, and Mrs. Wilson headlined her memo, “Iraq-related Nuclear Report Makes a Splash.”

The report forwarded below has prompted me to send this on to you and request your comments and opinion. Briefly, it seems that Niger has signed a contract with Iraq to sell them uranium. The IC [Intelligence Community] is getting spun up about this for obvious reasons. The embassy in Niamey has taken the position that this report can’t be true — they have such cozy relations with the GON [Government of Niger] that they would know if something like this transpired.

So where do I fit in? As you may recall, [redacted] of CP/[office 2] recently approached my husband to possibly use his contacts in Niger to investigate [a separate Niger matter]. After many fits and starts, [redacted] finally advised that the station wished to pursue this with liaison. My husband is willing to help, if it makes sense, but no problem if not. End of story.

Now, with this report, it is clear that the IC is still wondering what is going on… my husband has good relations with both the PM and the former minister of mines, not to mention lots of French contacts, both of whom could possibly shed light on this sort of activity. To be frank with you, I was somewhat embarrassed by the agency’s sloppy work last go-round, and I am hesitant to suggest anything again. However, [my husband] may be in a position to assist. Therefore, request your thoughts on what, if anything, to pursue here. Thank you for your time on this.

No mention in the memo of a "guy just walking by her office" suggesting she include this offer in her memo.

There's more -- she seems to also be lying about the timeline, fudging dates in order to avoid taking the blame for offering up her husband, and also misrepresenting the words of a fellow CIA officer, whom she claims came to her with "tears in his eyes" about his words being "distorted" in stating that Valerie Plame suggested her husband. No idea if he's prone to crying jags or not, but his own report names her flatly as the person who recommended Joe Wilson.

Posted by: Ace at 10:05 AM | Comments (21)
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5 Killed In US Raid On Sadr City, Following Mookie's Triumpant Return; US *Doubling* Strength of Combat Forces In Iraq -- For A Time
— Ace

RichardMc sends it with the headline, "Sadr but Wiser." And also, deader.

A day after radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr resurfaced to end nearly four months in hiding and demand U.S. troops leave Iraq, American forces raided his Sadr City stronghold and killed five suspected militia fighters in air strikes Saturday.

U.S. and Iraqi forces called in the air strikes after a raid in which they captured a "suspected terrorist cell leader," the U.S. military said in statement.

The statement claimed the captured man was "the suspected leader in a secret cell terrorist network known for facilitating the transport of weapons and explosively formed penetrators, or EFPs, from Iran to Iraq, as well as bringing militants from Iraq to Iran for terrorist training."

...

The militia fighters were killed in air strikes on nine cars that were seen positioning themselves to attack American forces after the raid, the military said.

...

Hours after the cleric spoke in at a key Shiite shrine in Kufa, about 100 miles south of Baghdad, the notorious leader of al-Sadr's Mahdi Army militia in the city of Basra was killed in a shootout as British and Iraq troops tried to arrest him, police and the British military said, further inflaming tensions in the Shiite areas of southern Iraq.

Meanwhile, the US is doubling the strength of its combat forces in Iraq -- if only briefly:

The Bush administration is quietly on track to nearly double the number of combat troops in Iraq this year, an analysis of Pentagon deployment orders showed Monday.

When additional support troops are included in this second troop "surge," the total number of U.S. troops in Iraq could increase from 162,000 now to more than 200,000 — a record high number — by the end of the year.

The little-noticed efforts to reinforce U.S. troops in Iraq are being carried out without the fanfare that accompanied President Bush's initial troop surge in January.

The second "surge" of troops to Iraq is being executed by deploying more combat brigades to the country, plus extending tours of duty for troops already there.

Retired Army Maj. Gen. William Nash, the U.S. commander who led NATO troops into Bosnia in late 1995, asked to comment on the findings, said: "It doesn't surprise me that they're not talking about it. I think they would be very happy not to have any more attention paid to this."

The first surge was prominently proclaimed by Bush in a nationally televised address on Jan. 10 when he ordered five additional combat brigades to join 15 brigades already in Iraq.

The build-up was designed to give commanders the 20 combat brigades that Pentagon planners said were needed to provide security in Baghdad and western Anbar province.

Since then, the Pentagon has extended combat tours for units in Iraq from 12 months to 15 months and announced the deployment of additional brigades.

Taken together, the steps could put elements of as many as 28 combat brigades in Iraq by Christmas, according to an analysis of deployment orders by Hearst Newspapers.

And if that doesn't work -- and, likely, even if it does -- it seems we're on a timetable for withdrawal, which tracks rather closely with the Pelosi-Murtha Plan For Victory, minus the Okinawan Rapid Response Forces:

The Bush administration is developing what are described as concepts for reducing American combat forces in Iraq by as much as half next year, according to senior administration officials in the midst of the internal debate.

It is the first indication that growing political pressure is forcing the White House to turn its attention to what happens after the current troop increase runs its course.

The concepts call for a reduction in forces that could lower troop levels by the midst of the 2008 presidential election to roughly 100,000, from about 146,000, the latest available figure, which the military reported on May 1. They would also greatly scale back the mission that President Bush set for the American military when he ordered it in January to win back control of Baghdad and Anbar Province.

The mission would instead focus on the training of Iraqi troops and fighting Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, while removing Americans from many of the counterinsurgency efforts inside Baghdad.

Still, there is no indication that Mr. Bush is preparing to call an early end to the current troop increase, and one reason officials are talking about their long-range strategy may be to blunt pressure from members of Congress, including some Republicans, who are pushing for a more rapid troop reduction.

...

So far, the concepts are entirely a creation of Washington and have been developed without the involvement of the top commanders in Iraq, Gen. David H. Petraeus and Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, both of whom have been enthusiastic supporters of the troop increase.

Those generals and other commanders have made it clear that they are operating on a significantly slower clock than officials in Washington, who are eager for significant withdrawals before the president leaves office in January 2009.

In an interview in Baghdad on Thursday, General Odierno, the senior United States ground commander, said any withdrawal of American troops was not advisable until December, “at a minimum.”

Even then, he said, redeployments should be carried out slowly, to avoid jeopardizing security gains.

If it sounds like a sell-out for political expediency, well, it probably is. But even reliably-conservative Mitch McConnell is pushing for an Iraq exit as the elections loom.

As President Bush prepared to sign a $120 billion Iraq War funding bill later today, House Democratic leaders vowed to keep up the pressure for a change of course in the war. The Senate’s top Republican predicted Bush himself would lead such a shift this fall.

“I think the handwriting is on the wall that we are going in a different direction in the fall, and I expect the president himself to lead it,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

McConnell added, “We’ve given the Iraqi government an opportunity to have a normal country, and so far, they’ve been a great disappointment.”

...

McConnell indicated that he expects Bush to redirect U.S. policy in Iraq along the lines recommended last December by the bipartisan Iraq Study Group.

Indeed. How's that Iranian/Syrian cooperation on stabilizing Iraq coming, eh?

Posted by: Ace at 09:54 AM | Comments (10)
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NYT Accidentally Exposes Clinton-Connected Corporation Scamming Elderly, Then Attempts To Spin Control On Their Behalf
— Ace

An outfit called InfoUSA collects information on seniors, often used by its unscrupulous clients to defraud them.

Dick Morris followed up with a story noting that Bill Clinton had a serious financial relationship with InfoUSA. The Times, accidentally having violated its key journalistic mission of promoting the Clintons, then attempts to contain the damage it quite-inadvertantly created.

Meanwhile, the Hillary! campagin seems to have leaked a biography about her to the WaPo in order to deflate interest in it, an an upcoming Carl Bernstein book claims that Bill Clinton had planned to divorce his wife in order to be with "the love of his life:"

Carl Bernstein claims in A Woman in Charge that the love of the former president's life was business executive Marilyn Jo Jenkins.

According to the Watergate journalist, Miss Jenkins was spirited into the governor's mansion for a final, furtive meeting with him the day he left to claim the White House.

Miss Jenkins is said to have played such a "pivotal role" in Mr Clinton's life that in 1989 he offered to divorce Hillary to be with her.

The ensuing crisis apparently led to Betsey Wright, Mr Clinton's chief of staff, taking him to see a therapist.

Mrs Clinton later told her best friend Diane Blair that she believed the presidency would help her marriage because her husband's "sexual compulsions would be tempered by the White House and the ever-present press corps".

As Mr Bernstein makes clear, in light of the Monica Lewinsky scandal that turned out to be "a flawed assumption".

Ahem.

In the 640-page book, Bob Boorstin, who worked for Mrs Clinton when she was trying to restructure the nation's healthcare system, blamed her for the collapse of her own plans.

"I find her to be among the most self-righteous people I've ever known," he told Mr Bernstein. "It's her great flaw."

Mark Fabiani, who defended the Clintons as White House counsel, said Hillary was "so tortured by the way she's been treated that she would do anything to get out of the situation.

"If that involved not being fully forthcoming, Mr Fabiani said she would say: 'I have a reason for not being forthcoming.'"

And here's some more from that book Hillary leaked to the press:

The second book, Her Way by New York Times reporters Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta Jr, claims that Mrs Clinton hired a private detective to investigate one of her husband's mistresses.

According to the book, she ordered the detective to undermine Gennifer Flowers "until she is destroyed".

The incident took place when Mr Clinton was running for president in 1992.

Her Way looks in detail at Mrs Clinton's Senate vote in support of the Iraq war, suggesting she may have been motivated by a desire not to abandon her husband's toughon-Iraq policy and a need "to prove that she was tough".

Furthermore, The Smartest Woman In America was apparently so smart she didn't need to read the National Intelligence Estimate before casting her vote in favor of the Iraq War:

"Her Way" ... says she voted for the Iraq war without reading the National Intelligence Estimate that contained doubts about the weapons of mass destruction that Iraq was said to have possessed, The Post said.

Philippe Reines, Clinton's Senate press secretary, said she "was briefed multiple times by several members of the administration on their intelligence regarding Iraq, which included the classified aspects of the NIE."

Question: Can someone claim to have been "misled into war" by a report she didn't even bother to read?

Posted by: Ace at 09:33 AM | Comments (31)
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May 25, 2007

"The Case for the Empire"
— Slublog

On this, the anniversary of Geek, I point you to an article of near-heresy.

Was The Empire good?

Leia's lies are perfectly defensible--she thinks she's serving the greater good--but they make her wholly unreliable on the question of whether or not Alderaan really is peaceful and defenseless. If anything, since Leia is a high-ranking member of the rebellion and the princess of Alderaan, it would be reasonable to suspect that Alderaan is a front for Rebel activity or at least home to many more spies and insurgents like Leia.

Whatever the case, the important thing to recognize is that the Empire is not committing random acts of terror. It is engaged in a fight for the survival of its regime against a violent group of rebels who are committed to its destruction.

Discuss.

Old, but amusing, Robot Chicken video below the fold.

Bonus Video added by Ace, too. more...

Posted by: Slublog at 02:07 PM | Comments (64)
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Al Gore's Book Signing Attended By Thousands of Greedy Earth-Destroying Republicans
— Ace

How else to explain the parking lot for the event being washed over in a tsunami of SUVs?

IMG_3301.JPG

I guess Al Gore's book itself counts as 500 tons of carbon dioxide offsets.

More SUVs and rich douchebags carrying Che Guevera man-purses at Zombietime.

Remember, folks, this is the reality-based community. The community that despies "faith-based" policies and irrational religions.

Via MVRWC, which notes that European diplomats are criticizing Israel for arresting terror-connected Hamas legislators, apparently believing that simply being an elected official gives one carte blanche to engage in terrorism and murder.

Wait, did I say European diplomats?

I meant the US State Department.

Posted by: Ace at 01:16 PM | Comments (19)
Post contains 115 words, total size 1 kb.

Al Gore's Book Signing Attended By Thousands of Greedy Earth-Destroying Republicans
— Ace

How else to explain the parking lot for the event being washed over in a tsunami of SUVs?

IMG_3301.JPG

I guess Al Gore's book itself counts as 500 tons of carbon dioxide offsets.

More SUVs and rich douchebags carrying Che Guevera man-purses at Zombietime.

Remember, folks, this is the reality-based community. The community that despies "faith-based" policies and irrational religions.

Via MVRWC, which notes that European diplomats are criticizing Israel for arresting terror-connected Hamas legislators, apparently believing that simply being an elected official gives one carte blanche to engage in terrorism and murder.

Wait, did I say European diplomats?

I meant the US State Department.


Posted by: Ace at 01:16 PM | Comments (19)
Post contains 126 words, total size 1 kb.

Rosie Surprises No One In Drama-Queen Gibbering-Lunatic Diva-Act Tantrum-Quitting of The View
— Ace

Our long national nightmare is over just gearing up.

Rosie.jpg
--Taken from Electric Venom

Rosie O'Donnell will not be back on "The View," ABC announced Friday, two days after she and co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck got into a huge political dust-up live on the talk show.

"We had hoped that Rosie would be with us until the end of her contract three weeks from now, but Rosie has informed us that she would like an early leave. Therefore, we part ways, thank her for her tremendous contribution to 'The View' and wish her well," Brian Frons, the president of Disney-ABC's Daytime Television Group, said in a statement.


Pictured: fg, Rosie O'Donnell;
bg, the poor son-of-a-bitch paid to wash her feet
and drain the pus from her bedsores

Actually, that story is here. 1,051 pounds. It definitely does not look real. And yet, it seems, it is.


Wait, Wait, Wait: Apart from a taxidermist and some folks at a weighing station who are not named and not officials of anything, no one except for the kid and his dad can confirm the size of this thing.

Status: Undetermined.

Posted by: Ace at 11:16 AM | Comments (113)
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Tender Thoughts On The Thirtieth Anniversary Of Star Wars
— AndrewR

Thirty years ago, my parents went to see the original Star Wars in the theater, and afterwards something happened.

Maybe it was Han Solo's rakish, devil-may-care attitude of casual insouciance; maybe it was Princess Leia's prominent lack of breast-restraining undergarments; maybe it was the exquisite sexual tension between Vader and Grand Moff Tarkin.

At any rate, something about the movie affected them, because believe me when I tell you: They went home and got it on.

Nine months later, yours truly came mewling and cuss-talking into the world.

So thanks, George Lucas, and congratulations on your movie's thirty years of success. It's not too far of a stretch to say that without you, I'd be nothing more than a few of my old man's Y chromosomes shot into a Kleenex.

And thank god you didn't decide to make The Phantom Menace first.

Posted by: AndrewR at 10:54 AM | Comments (31)
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Wretchard Predicts Preening Hysterics About "Torture" Won't Mention AQ Torture Manual; In Unrelated News, Andrew Sullivan Fails To Mention AQ Torture Manual
— Ace

He does mention torture, actually -- the "torture" committed by George Tenet. So "torture" is still apparently on his mind.

But the repellent torture-porn scrabblings of human eyes being pulled out of living faces? Sullivan, predictably, has nothing at all to say about that.

Which is what Wretchard predicted. Sullivan can't even acknowledge the real thing, because it would expose his crusade against the counterfeit as childishly mendacious:

The problem with the fake is that it is always shown up by the arrival of the Real Thing. The difference between the two is often so manifest that it seems ridiculous to think that anyone could have been fooled -- even momentarily -- by the counterfeit.

The problem with the word "torture" is that it has been so artfully corrupted by some commentators that we now find ourselves at a loss to describe the kinds of activities that the al-Qaeda interrogation manual graphically recommends. Now that the term "torture" has been put in one-to-one correspondence with such admittedly unpleasant activities as punching, sleep deprivation, a handkerchief pulled over one's face and loaded with water, searches by women upon sensitive Islamic men or the disrespectful handling of Korans -- what on earth do we call gouging people's eyes out?

Answer: we call it nothing. My fearless prediction is that not a single human rights organization will seriously take the matter up. There will be no demonstrations against these barbaric practices, often inflicted upon Muslims by other Muslims, in any of the capitals of the world. Not a single committee in the United Nations will be convened nor will any functionary in the European Union lose so much as a night's sleep over it. The word for these activities -- whatever we choose to call it -- will not be spoken.

Sullivan's not a human rights organization, though he does seem to believe he's a kind of one-man Salvation Army at times.

Isn't it funny that he's done precisely what Wrechard predicted, and undoubtedly for the reasons he's outlined? Not even the pretense of caring about real torture, because he doesn't care about real torture. His only object is the fakey-torture of red-ink menstrual-blood and belly slaps, and to even acknowledge the chthonic cruelty depicted in Al Qaeda's torture manual would expose his hysterical preening for the trivium it is.

And to repeat: He does mention "torture." Not only does he mention it, he discusses the corruption of the English language, as Wrechard does:

...the hideous term: "enhanced interrogation techniques.' I'm not sure where exactly this came from, but George Tenet seems to have been the tipping point. But it's important to note that Tenet has a very personal interest in lying about torture. After all, he will be subject to war crime charges if he concedes that he authorized it. But in his rewording, he has also, it seems to me, conceded something very important. He was clearly concerned that the term "coercive" could be legal peril. It implies physical pressure so severe it renders any choice to cooperate moot. It implies, inevitably, "severe mental or physical pain or suffering," in order to extract information. That is the only relevant legal and moral criterion for torture. Is the information coerced, i.e. is the physical or mental suffering so severe that the victim has no choice but to tell the torturers what the want to hear? If it is, it's torture, under American and international law. And Tenet is a criminal. Abuse of common English is one of the hallmarks of political mischief. I don't think any journalist should let a politician off the hook on this one. Words matter.

You know what else matters, St. Andrew? Torture. Your little pet bugaboo. And yet despite the fact that these godawful images were seen by everyone yesterday, linked by Drudge and every other site in the world, you just could not bring yourself to even mention them, eh?

What was Wretchard's prediction again?

The problem with the word "torture" is that it has been so artfully corrupted by some commentators that we now find ourselves at a loss to describe the kinds of activities that the al-Qaeda interrogation manual graphically recommends. Now that the term "torture" has been put in one-to-one correspondence with such admittedly unpleasant activities as punching, sleep deprivation, a handkerchief pulled over one's face and loaded with water, searches by women upon sensitive Islamic men or the disrespectful handling of Korans -- what on earth do we call gouging people's eyes out?

Answer: we call it nothing.... The word for these activities -- whatever we choose to call it -- will not be spoken.

If he's as maverick, indepedent, and free-thinking a writer as he fancies himself, why is it so trivially easy to predict Sullivan?

Why, predicting that was almost as easy as predicting Sullivan would link to Steve Clemons' Cheney-and-Jew-bankers conspiracy theorizing as if it were a well-sourced charge to be taken seriously.

He says he'll be on Chris Matthews this Sunday (but of course he will) discussing the JFK assassination (naturalment!).

Is there a single John Bircher conspriacy theory this demented imebecile will not gladly discuss?


Via Michelle Malkin.

Macabre content warnin for the jump.

more...

Posted by: Ace at 10:50 AM | Comments (22)
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Birdwatching "The View"
— Jack M.

I've been nominally following the fight between Rosie and Hasselbeck through the frequent posts Allah puts up over at HotAir. I just haven't been able to get into them like many because something always seems to be missing from the commentary.

It struck me this morning as to what that missing ingredient was: the sage wit and succinct wisdom of Spurwing Plover.

It's been a while since the Plover was seen in these parts. Word has it that he was the last of his kind, and may now be extinct. But over my morning cup of peyote laced coffee (I have a prescription for it from my local community college's Native American Studies professor so it's cool!) I thought I heard a voice carried by the wind. Naturally, I spoke back to the disembodied entity. Who wouldn't?

Jack M.: Umm..who the hell are you?

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem id you remember how everybody loved LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE because MELISSA SUE GILBERT was so cute and spunky and had PONY-TAILS?

Jack M.: What?

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: ELIZABETH HASSELBECK is LAURA INGALLS except that HASSELBECK doesn't have a BLIND SISTER and her father isn't a WEREWOLF/ANGEL.

Jack M.: Oh...you are Spuriwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem and you are talking about "The View", right?

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: Did you ever see EXIT TO EDEN where ROSIE O'DONNELL wore BONDAGE GEAR like most HOLLYWIERD stars and was fat, like a modern DAN ACKROYD who was in that movie then?

Jack M.: Umm...no, I didn't.

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: How about A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN where ROSIE was a fat and manly BASEBALL player with MADONNA?

Jack M.: Yeah, I saw that...it had Geena Davis and Tom Hanks in it too, right? "There's no crying in base....."

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: (Interrupting) Remember when ROSIE was a fat and manly RETARD in RIDING THE BUS WITH MY SISTER which also had GEENA DAVIS who was once married to THE FLY?

Jack M.: Your point being?

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: I bet HASSELBECK would be a GOOD PICK to play HEATHER THOMAS' or MARKIE POST'S role if HOLLYWIERD ever makes a MOVIE about "THE FALL GUY".

Jack M.: Huh. I never would have thought of that.

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: But where does ROSIE go because on THE VIEW she is PERFECTLY CAST as a fat, and manly, and retarded, LESBIAN which means TYPECASTING is a real possibility.

Jack M.: Well, I guess HASSELBECK could play a FEMALE BLOOD ELF WARLOCK who smacks around ROSIE'S MALE ORC WARRIOR in the upcoming WORLD OF WARCRAFT movie and they could call it "A LEAGUE OF THEIR PWNAGE"!

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: Dude, what the hell? Get your own damn schtick!

Jack M.: Sorry....

Spurwing Plover's Shamanistic Totem: Sorry doesn't cut it, assmunch. I'm out of here you theiving bastard. There's a LOST IN SPACE marathon coming on and I don't want to miss it. DANGER WILL ROBINSON DANGER! Freakin' douchetool.

And just like that, the voice was gone. But then so was my coffee. Had it ever really been there? (The voice I mean...I know the coffee had been as I "recycled" it about 45 minutes later). Who can know?

But the important thing is I am so much wiser now.

And that, my friends, is what really matters.

Posted by: Jack M. at 10:39 AM | Comments (30)
Post contains 560 words, total size 3 kb.

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