Monthly Archives: June 2006

When amnesty makes sense

Charles Krauthammer takes a clear-eyed look at the issue of amnesty for Sunni insurgents. Krauthammer is spot-on — Sunni elements fighting against the coalition forces should receive amnesty in exchange for giving up their fight, if that’s what the elected government of Iraq decides will best promote national reconciliation and reduce the bloodshed. The amnesty would not extend to al-Qaeda which, by definition, cannot be part of any national reconciliation. »

Up for the quarterfinals, Part Two

Yesterday, in my preview of the Germany-Argentina match I wrote, “One way or the other, I like the Germans in this match, but they probably will have their hands full.” “Hands full” turned out to be an understatement; “one way or the other” was about right. Germany won on penalty kicks after 120 minutes of deadlock. This was one of the most interesting soccer matches I’ve ever seen, and I’d »

Not totally silent

Last night, I posted a piece about female participation in parliamentary elections in Kuwait. Noting that this was part of a trend towards increased voting rights for women, I concluded that “this development deserves more attention from our media and our feminists than it has received.” So far, so good I think. But then I added as my title, “The Silence of the Feminists,” suggesting that feminists were giving the »

Piercing the fog on Turtle Bay

The United Nations Security Council has gone into Twilight Zone mode in an emergency session devoted to events in Hamastan. United States Ambassador John Bolton made the following statement at the emergency session: We are all aware of the seriousness of the situation that is unfolding in the Middle East. Let me state that our first and foremost goal here in the Security Council should be to avoid taking any »

Iranian Soldiers Captured In Iraq

Reuters reports: Iraqi and U.S. troops battled Shi’ite militiamen in a village northeast of Baghdad on Thursday, and witnesses and police said U.S. helicopters bombed orchards to flush out gunmen hiding there. Iraqi security officials said Iranian fighters had been captured in the fighting, in which a sniper shot dead the commander of an Iraqi quick reaction force and two of his men. They did not say how the Iranians »

“But Then the Enemy Would Adapt”

Defenders of the New York Times, the L.A. Times and the leakers who outed the Terrorist Financing Tracking Program say that the newspaper stories didn’t tell the terrorists anything new. But there is a big difference between knowing that we’re trying to follow money trails, and knowing how we do it. In that context, this interview with the commander of Israel’s Air Force, Maj.-Gen. Eliezer Shkedy, which appeared in today’s »

Don’t Look Now, But…

President Bush’s approval rating is back up over 40% in the Real Clear Politics average. This reflects Republicans swinging back in the President’s favor notwithstanding the immigration issue. Recent events–the New York Times, Hamdan, etc.–will tend to solidify the President’s position among Republicans, and some independents, further. So a lot of journalists will have to delete from their word processors the references to “record low poll numbers” that get inserted »

The beat goes on

Last night John served up a helping of Gene Krupa. This morning the New York Sun’s excellent pop music writer Will Friedwald serves up a helping of drummer turned bandleader Paul Motian, the lone surviving member of the great Bill Evans Trio: “Marching to the beat of different drummers.” You can access the complete article (otherwise restricted to subscribers) via Google News. »

Five, wrong

NRO has posted comments on Hamdan by John Eastman, Julian Ku and Ed Whelan: “Five, wrong.” Our friends at RealClearPolitics have posted an excellent column by Ronald Cass to the same effect: “Common sense at war. »

Weighed in the balance and found wanting

Hugh Hewitt examines the claim by Eric Lichtblau that the Times Two did no harm when it blew the terrorist finance tracking program: “Some of my best friends are journalists.” At his site Hugh also expands on his column: “Lichtblau’s defense.” »

Who is Keith Ellison? (15)

Today Jesse Jackson comes to town to speak on behalf of Keith Ellison, the endorsed Democratic candidate for Minnesota’s Fifth District congressional seat. In connection with the occasion, Minnesota Public Radio has posted Tom Sheck’s report on Ellison’s background: “Keith Ellison dogged by his past.” Chicago Tribune national correspondent Tim Jones covers the same territory: “Candidate finds past ties a real bind.” Associated Press correspondent Patrick Condon also takes a »

Poaching On My Partner’s Territory

When I was a kid, my older brother was a rock ‘n roll drummer of some note, whereas I–you’ll be shocked to learn–was a hopeless geek. In those days, I learned to regard Gene Krupa as the paradigm of drumming coolness. Now, through the miracle of YouTube, here he is. Music is, of course, Scott’s bailiwick, but I can’t resist this brief intrusion. »

Up for the quarterfinals

The World Cup is down to its final eight teams. “Normalcy” has been restored this Cup (there’s no U.S., Turkey, South Korea, or Senegal), probably because the tournament is back in Europe. Six of the remaining eight are nations that have won the Cup before and that make the quarterfinals at pretty regularly — Brazil, Argentina, Germany, Italy, France, and England. A seventh, Portugal, is clearly one of the world’s »

Congress in the batter’s box

Dennis Byrne makes an important point about today’s Supreme Court decision in favor of Osama bin Laden’s driver — the decision in no way supports the claim that the administration’s actions towards Hamdan and his fellow terrorists violated or disregarded the rule of law. As Byrne notes, there was no settled law regarding the issues raised by Hamdan’s lawyers. The Bush administration’s position had some support in the law, as »

Update From Israel

The Jerusalem Post is a good place to go for the latest developments in Gaza and Israel. The Post reports that Israel arrested a number of Hamas ministers as part of a criminal investigation, but is nevertheless willing to talk about exchanging them for the kidnapped soldier, Cpl. Gilad Shalit. Hamas says that proposal is premature. President Mubarak of Egypt says that Hamas has agreed, conditionally, to hand over Cpl. »

The silence of the feminists

Women in Kuwait have voted for the first time ever in parliamentary elections. Women, of course, have also voted in all of the recent elections in Iraq. In fact, Saudi Arabia reportedly is now the only Arab country that holds elections but doesn’t allow women to vote. The increase in female sufferage in the Arab world represents a huge victory for human rights, and holds out the promise, though hardly »

Hamdan Wins

In what strikes me as an upset, the U.S. Supreme Court has reversed the D.C. Circuit and ruled in favor of Guantanamo detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan. The Court held that the federal courts have jurisdiction over Hamdan’s claims, and that the military commission that is to try Hamdan fails to satisfy requirements of the Uniform Code of Military Justice and the Geneva Convention, both of which the Court held to »