Cross-posted on The Conjecturer.
Defense & the War
- Noah Shachtman wonders if any other federal agency has ever publicly rebuked its employees like the State Department has. I can’t think of any, not even in scandals, but that doesn’t mean much. It doesn’t remove the fact that many of those objecting (especially to poor mission clarity, and Condolizzle Rice’s haughty leadership style) aren’t invalid.
- Bob Bateman on Victor Davis Hanson. I say catfight!
Around the World
- The International Crisis Group is pissed.
- I’m glad the Center for American Progress has woken up to the horrible reality now facing us in Afghanistan: a humiliating defeat (the bombing I mentioned the other day now can claim 41 innocent victims, whose crime, apparently, was not being crazy and touring a sugar factory). I just wish others had come to the same conclusion in, oh, I’ll go with 2004, when we first noticed the problem of years of broken promises, funding shortfalls, and personnel shortages thanks to the Iraq War. Alas. We find ourselves here today.
- Over at Registan.net, Nathan emerges from his undisclosed location to post on the mess in Georgia and those damned freaky riot police, and I take a peek inside some oil industry strategery. I didn’t mention in that post that I ran into the Bonnie Boyd and sat next to her, and snarked at all the posturing, and then made her promise to grab brunch with me soon, but I so did that.
- Speaking of Ms. Boyd, she has a great post on the politics of bread in Uzbekistan. It is actually more interesting than it sounds, as the world-beloved wheatloaf might actually have a significant role to play in the country’s future.
- Actually, Iran inspiring more nuclear proliferation in the Middle East doesn’t concern me very much at all. In fact, I think it will be an objectively good thing: nuclear weapons are fantastic conflict deterrents. Meanwhile, the moment Washington took a conciliatory tone toward Tehran, they seem ready to respond. Fancy that (Iran is still worth keeping an eye on, just not all the hyperventilating, ya know?).
- Is Turkey’s speech policies keeping it out of the EU? Ehh, I’d say rather it’s their illegal occupation of the sovereign territory of a current EU and NATO member (Cyprus), their systematic persecution of the Kurds, and the fact that they have brown skin, and Europe just doesn’t do that.
Back at Home
- Sweet, I got name-dropped on Jezebel! Also, they offer some sage advice on not crossing Martha Stewart. Umm, that is correct.
- That’s strange—we used to consider waterboarding torture, like a hundred years ago. It would make us react in horror then. Except the Bush administration doesn’t. Telling, no?
- I don’t know why I found this unbearably hilarious.
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