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Saturday, July 16, 2005
The Causes of Terror

It's the Jooooz, according to this Imam (published in the Detroit News)

As long as Jews can immigrate to Israel by the tens of thousands each year while Palestinians stay hungry and homeless, I am afraid this will contribute to the violence in the Middle East and elsewhere.

It's revenge for Falluja, according to this turkey in the Guardian:

Shocked would be to suggest we didn't appreciate that when Falluja was flattened, the people under it were dead but not forgotten - long after we had moved on to reading more interesting headlines about the Olympics. It is not the done thing to make such comparisons, but Muslims on the street do.

It was brainwashing, according to one of the bombers' family:

"We are devastated that our son may have been brainwashed into carrying out such an atrocity, since we know him as a kind and caring member of our family," said the parents of Mohammad Sidique Khan, 30.

"We urge people with the tiniest piece of information to come forward in order to expose these terror networks which target and groom our sons to carry out such evils."

It was the injustice according to some friends of another bomber:

"He was sick of it all, all the injustice and the way the world is going about it," Mr. Dutt, 22, said. "Why, for example, don't they ever take a moment of silence for all the Iraqi kids who die?"

It was an evil ideology, says Tony Blair:

U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair warned of the need to confront the ``evil ideology'' behind the London bombs that killed 55 people, saying to appease Islamist terrorists would be a ``misunderstanding of catastrophic proportions.''

The terrorists' cause ``is not founded on an injustice,'' Blair said in a speech at the National Policy Forum in London today. ``It is founded on a belief, one whose fanaticism is such that it cannot be modified, it cannot be remedied.''

Blair vowed to work with other nations to promote moderate Islam, saying the way to thwart attacks such as last week's London transport bombings is as much about winning a battle of ideas within Islam and outside, as implementing anti-terrorism measures.

The U.K. and other nations should try to defeat terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda ``by the power of argument and debate,'' Blair said. ``That means not just arguing against their terrorism but also against their politics.''

Countering the view that the war in Iraq has made terrorist attacks more likely, Blair said the terrorists would ``use any issue that is a matter of dissent within our democracy'' to perpetrate their attacks.

``If it is Iraq that motivates them, why is it the same ideology that is killing Iraqis now?'' Blair said in a televised speech. ``If the plight of the Palestinians is what motivates them, why every time Israel and Palestine are making progress, do they commit another atrocity?'' he said.

Elimination of Israel

``What we are confronting is an evil ideology,'' Blair said. ``They demand the elimination of Israel, the withdrawal of all westerners from Muslim states'' and ``the establishment of a Taliban state on the way to one caliphate of all Muslim nations.''

You can probably guess which one of those I agree with.
Question and Answer?

Found this coincidental pairing of stories at Lucianne

Thief Steals Medal of Honor from Hero

Let's hope that his conscience gets to him:

Sammy L. Davis was awarded the nation's highest military honor for his bravery and skill during a ferocious Vietnam War firefight that killed about 30 of his comrades.

Davis has kept that Medal of Honor close to his side ever since President Lyndon B. Johnson presented it to him in 1968.

But Friday morning, Indianapolis Police Department officers said, Davis discovered the medal had been stolen during a break-in of the trunk of his car in the parking lot of Wingate Inn Airport, 5797 Rockville Road.

There's nothing lower than stealing a medal from a veteran. But this is the highest medal, so it's the lowest crime.
My Favorite Canadian

Gen. Rick Hillier, who's not apologizing:

If Canadians were shocked that the head of their military called his enemy "detestable murderers and scumbags," they better get used to it. Gen. Rick Hillier has never minced words, nor is he likely to start any time soon.


Reporters familiar with Hillier's style barely flinched when he said all elements of the Canadian Forces need to be revamped, including the part where "you go out and bayonet somebody."

"We are not the Public Service of Canada," he declared. "We are not just another department. We are the Canadian Forces and our job is to be able to kill people."
Further Info on the Allah Akbar Post

I blogged this incredible video yesterday, which, taken from the point of view of an insurgent sniper, showed a US soldier getting hit in the chest, then bouncing back to his feet (thank heaven for body armor).

Here's the story that goes along with the video. I speculated at the time that the sniper had met Allah, but he hasn't. Why? Because the soldier he tried to kill was a medic who treated the terrorist after first securing him with handcuffs.

That illustrates the difference between the two sides. If Pfc Tschiderer had been secured by the enemy, he'd be facing decapitation.

Hat Tip: Michelle Malkin
Friday, July 15, 2005
Plamegate Peaks

So says David Wallace-Wells of Slate, in a links-filled post.

Plucky liberal Joshua Micah Marshall offers what he hopes will be the Democratic line on the scandal. "The entire Wilson/Plame story and the Rove/White House criminal probe sub-story are just so many threads thrown off a much larger and more consquential ball of yarn: the administration's use of fraudulent evidence of an Iraqi nuclear weapons program to seal the deal for war on Iraq with the American people," he writes at TPMCafe. Atrios, E Pluribus Unum, Ed Cone, and others on the left are opening up another front in the war on Rove, passing around a New York Times column that attacks the advisor for turning 9/11 into a domestic political opportunity.

Heheh. As Hugh Hewitt pointed out on the radio today, the Democrats hate it when Bush mentions 9-11 because it reminds everybody that the Democrats can't be trusted with the keys to the country.
Britain Will Get Hit Again

Not hard to read that between these lines:

At Beeston's Cross Flats Park, in the center of this now embattled town, Sanjay Dutt and his friends grappled Friday with why their friend Kakey, better known to the world as Shehzad Tanweer, had decided to become a suicide bomber.

"He was sick of it all, all the injustice and the way the world is going about it," Mr. Dutt, 22, said. "Why, for example, don't they ever take a moment of silence for all the Iraqi kids who die?"

So with all the injustice going on, he decided to kill a bunch of innocent people?

For instance, at a small meeting hall in Birmingham last Sunday, Dr. Waheed, who now serves as the group's spokesman, and about 100 other members, discussed the London bombings. Unlike most Muslim groups, which have been seeking to reach out to other communities and stem the fallout of the bombings, this gathering was decidedly unsympathetic.

"We know that the killing of innocents is forbidden," Dr. Waheed said. "But we don't see two classes of blood; the blood of Iraqis is just as important to us as English blood." He emphasized that they in no way condoned the bombings. "But when you understand things from that perspective, why should we condemn the bombing?"

When we understand things from that perspective, why should the British allow you to remain in Britain?

The article repeats the new line on the bombings; that it was caused by Britain's involvement in Iraq. Apparently the media have decided that selling the "they did it because they were poor" line isn't selling.

The Guardian gives voice to more of the hate:

As other suicide bombers have said, they may regret the loss of innocent lives in their political, murderous acts - but they atone with their own lives and hope God forgives them. The logic is clear: your security is only assured if ours is. If our women and children are killed, then your women and children are killed.

The policies of Bush and Blair have made life much more dangerous for all of us. Muslims in London are as much victims of atrocities as in Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine. And, as happened after September 11, those back home phone, worrying about us here - because of the bombs as much as a racist backlash.

This is another guy who might benefit a little from extraordinary rendition.
A Little Too Much Scientific Rationality

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

Take the test yourself here.

An accomplished diplomat who can virtually do no wrong, you sometimes know it is best to rely on the council (sic) of others while holding the reins.

There are some words which I have known since I was a schoolboy. "With the first link, the chain is forged. The first speech censored, the first thought forbidden, the first freedom denied, chains us all irrevocably." These words were uttered by Judge Aaron Satie -- as a wisdom, and warning. The first time any man's freedom is trodden on, we're all damaged.
Meet Private (UK) Johnson Beharry, Hero

Awarded the Victoria Cross, the highest honor in the British army.

Read the entire story; it's terrific!

According to this site, Beharry is one of six men to win the VC who are currently living. =^)
Idiot Coach

This is absolutely unbelievable:

A youth baseball coach paid one of his players to hurt an 8-year-old mentally disabled teammate so the boy wouldn't be able to play in a game, state police said Friday.

Downs was arrested and arraigned Friday on charges of criminal solicitation to commit aggravated assault, corruption of minors, criminal conspiracy to commit simple assault and recklessly endangering another person. He was released from jail on an unsecured bond.

Eric Forsythe, the president of the R.W. Clark Youth Baseball League, said league organizers investigated accusations against Downs before the T-ball season ended earlier this month, but could not prove that he did anything wrong.

If Downs is convicted of any crime, he won't be allowed to be a coach next year, Forsythe said.

You know what, Mr Forsythe? It would be a lot wiser to announce right now that Downs is persona non grata at R.W. Clark Youth Baseball League games, regardless of whether he's convicted of a crime.
Moron Ken Livingstone

David Gelernter, who knows a little bit about terrorist bombings (having survived an attack by the Unabomber), takes a whack at London's Mayor.

Last year, Mayor Livingstone welcomed Egyptian cleric Sheik Yousef Qaradawi — the "Theologian of Terror" — to London. The sheik has called suicide bombings "heroic operations of martyrdom" and has urged Muslims to "destroy the aggressive Jews." Livingstone called the sheik a man of "moderation and tolerance." In an Op-Ed piece, the former editor of London's Asharq al Awsat Arabic-language newspaper begged to differ: "When it comes to political matters, Sheik Qaradawi represents the utmost degree of extremism."
Beer, Glorious Beer

Delivered a little faster by this man's product.
Allah Akbar Indeed

Our buddy John at My Take on Things pointed us to this startling video of an American soldier taking one in the chest. IIRC, Allah Akbar means "God is great" and he is indeed, because the soldier bounces right back up. As John pointed out, I guess that body armor really works. BTW, since we have the video, I'm guessing that the shooter has met Allah by now.
When Treating Terrorism As a Crime Works

Basically when you can get the cooperation of local authorities. Here's an article on the capture of the apparent mastermind of the London bombings.

Magdy Elnashar, 33, who authorities believe helped build the bombs, was taken into custody in suburban Cairo, Egypt. Elnashar had left England two weeks before the bombings, and British authorities had initiated a worldwide manhunt for him.

Notice what is not said: That Hosni Mubarak's government did the arresting.
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Patrick Hynes: Structural Advantages Favor Republicans

Here's a real nuts and bolts analysis of 2006, apparently the first of a series by our buddy from the Ankle-Biters

Contrary to conventional wisdom, the reasons the Democrats are not poised to benefit from the Republicans' recent lackluster performance are structural, not ideological; founded in hard electoral facts, not fluctuating public opinion. To put it another way, the Democrats aren't likely to make major gains in 2006 because they can't. During the next couple of weeks I will lay out the case against a Republican collapse, for good or ill, based on an electoral structure that rewards incumbency, punishes challengers, and strongly favors the GOP. In politics, the saying goes, everything will be different in 18 months. "Everything" here refers to the issues of the day, the things we discuss around the proverbial water cooler. But political realities shift much more slowly, if at all.

He points out that the Republicans are not fund raising well at the Senate level:

The NRSC has raised just under $17 million so far this year and has approximately $6 million cash-on-hand. The DSCC has raised just under $16 million and has $8.9 million cash-on-hand. The DSCC's cash-on-hand advantage is based almost exclusively on a one-month fundraising bonanza last April.

This probably has to do with the "Not One Dime" campaign that Captain's Quarters and Hugh Hewitt have endorsed due to the revolt of the Gang of 14. I'm still in the Coalition of the Chillin' on that personally, but I can understand the disappointment. And anyway, I don't give to the NRSC; I'd rather analyze the races myself and decide where my money will do the most good--like John Thune last year.
Portrait of a "Bomber"

Sheesh, this is a chilling article:

From 1996 to 1999, I interviewed nearly 250 people involved in the most militant camps of the Palestinian cause: volunteers who, like S, had been unable to complete their suicide missions, the families of dead bombers, and the men who trained them.

The operation doesn’t end with the explosion and the many deaths. Hamas and Islamic Jihad distribute copies of the martyr’s audiocassette or video to the media and to local organisations as a record of their success and encouragement to other young men. His act becomes the subject of sermons in mosques, and provides material for leaflets, posters, videos, demonstrations, and extensive coverage in the media. Graffiti on walls in the martyr’s neighbourhood praise his heroism. Aspiring martyrs perform mock re-enactments of the operation, using models of exploding cars and buses. The sponsoring organisation distributes cassettes of chants and songs honouring the good soldier.
Jack Kelly Explains It All For You

Want to get up to speed on Plamegate? Check out this post.
Pot, Meet Kettle

Howard Dean, in his own inimitable way:

Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean said Thursday that President Bush is "losing credibility with the American people" because of his policies regarding the war in Iraq and the controversy involving Karl Rove.

The American people have lost trust in Bush's trust and integrity "because his administration is playing politics with our national security," Dean said in a press release.

Why I Love Reading Old Comics

It's because they have stories about heroes without the "warts and all" treatment that we have come to expect in the modern era.

A friend of mine recently scanned in his copy of Superman #33, from March 1945. The second story in that issue is "The Country Doctor", and while it's pure schmaltz along the lines of "It's a Wonderful Life", it's still a terrific celebration of heroes.

The story begins with Clark Kent discussing an idea for an article with his editor, Perry White:

Clark looks through the newspaper's old files and finds a story about Dr David Brown, who had passed up an opportunity to be a bigshot at Metropolis Hospital in order to practice medicine in the hamlet of Middletown. It's not hard to see why Dr Brown hasn't gotten wealthy from his practice:

The inevitable twist to the story comes when Dr Brown's son arrives home as a newly-minted MD:

Dr Brown had hoped that his son would join his practice and eventually take over, but it turns out that Junior has a desire to make more of his life than his old man did by heading to the big city. But then an epidemic (that Dr Brown has been warning would come) hits the town and father and son work feverishly (with much aid from Superman) to save the people. Unfortunately the strain is too much for the old country doctor:

If you've watched any Frank Capra movies, you can write the rest of the script yourself. The son has a train to catch to the big city, but he keeps getting delayed:

Eventually he realizes his true calling:

And Clark has a terrific story for Perry White, and a conclusion we can all agree with:

Wednesday, July 13, 2005
This article makes it clear that the favorite mantra of the left on terrorists is a bunch of hogwash. That is, if we didn't already notice that Mohammed Atta's dad was a doctor in Egypt.

In the gritty, working-class suburbs of Leeds, Shahzad Tanweer, 22, was the fun-loving, rich kid of the neighborhood, the son of a savvy, Mercedes-driving shop owner.

This is not all that surprising. After all, many of the 1960s radicals who blew up buildings and killed "pigs" were hardly poverty cases. Kathy Boudin went to Bryn Mawr, while Bernadine Dohrn was a lawyer. Most of the others were children of privilege who attended schools like Columbia.

The Times strives to keep the myth alive with this:

In some ways, the men, particularly the youngest ones, fit neatly into the stereotype of a suicide bomber: They are the right age. They grew up in neighborhoods where no jobs, or bad jobs, are just as common as steady jobs.

Except of course, that was not Mr Tanweer's problem:

Mr. Tanweer lived in a large house and drove his father's red Mercedes on occasion. He wore brand-name clothes, worked out at a gym and took classes in the martial arts. He studied sports science at Leeds Metropolitan University, and when he could, he worked at his father's fish and chips shop for extra money.
Farewell to the Fireman's Pole?

That's what this article on New York firefighters indicates:

But now, slowly, the department has begun shrinking their number sharply as it builds new firehouses and remodels old ones to bring them up to current building codes. In many cases, ventilation systems have been installed where the poles and their surrounding holes used to be.
I Was Right

And everybody around here knows how much I hate saying that, right? (Crickets)

John Hawkins posts on the blogosphere traffic on the left and the right, based on a post by Chris over at MyDD.

You may recall that I took a look at an earlier post by Chris on blogosphere traffic about a month ago.

Second, it certainly looks to me like Kos is absorbing the left-wing of the blogosphere. It's ironic that the poster at MyDD was making a big thing about them catching the righties because of their sense of community, when his community was suffering the biggest drop in traffic since the election of any of the blogs. It's quite possible that Kos' big jump since New Year's has come at the expense of many other liberal blogs.

Third, Instapundit may be losing his traffic to smaller right-wing bloggers. Certainly I suspect a lot more people go to Power Line and CQ directly these days rather than waiting to see the link from Glenn.

Well, here's what Chris has to say:

The conservative advantage in smaller blog traffic is tremendous. In fact, for blogs ranked 67-250, conservatives hold a whopping 1,469,730 to 861,827 weekly page view lead over progressive blogs (70.5%). Even more stunningly, the conservative blogs ranked 67-250 make up 21.5% of all conservative blogosphere traffic, while the liberal blogs ranked 67-250 make up only 8.3% of all liberal blogosphere traffic--a five to two edge in favor of conservatives. Clearly, smaller blogs are a much, much more important part of the conservative blogosphere than they are a part of the liberal blogosphere.

Get it? Traffic is spread more widely around the conservative blogs, with a much larger percentage of the total blog readership at smaller conservative blogs, than is the case among liberal blogs.

John Hawkins scratches his head at this claim:

Now, right now you may be asking why this is important. Who cares if conservatives are leading among smaller blogs--that means that liberal blogs have an even larger lead among large blogs, right? While that is certainly true, it is also true that the smaller a blog tends to be, the more locally focused it tends to be.

John replies:

Furthermore -- take it from someone who knows the right side of the blogosphere extremely well -- percentage wise there just aren't all that many significant right-of-center blogs that spend a lot of time hammering "local issues."

Yep. This is a smaller blog, but you'll almost never hear me talking about AZ issues. It's not that I'm disinterested in them; it's just that the market for those issues is a lot smaller than the market for the latest posts on the Rove controversy.

John goes on to remark on why conservative blogs have a bigger impact:

So if we're talking about a story that fascinates the left side of the blogosphere, it probably caught the attention of the mainstream media at the same time and the MSM has the resources and contacts to cover it more thoroughly. The two exceptions to that have been the unimportant Jeff Gannon story and the Downing Street Memo, which is never going to amount to anything. In those two cases, the MSM could have taken those stories and run with them, but they weren't interested enough to do so (*** Some people might also include the Trent Lott story, but it was Instapundit, not any of the liberal blogs that did most of the heavy lifting on that one ***).

This is a theme I have turned to often in the past. Right-wing bloggers are competing against a very small cadre of conservative investigative journalists--Claudia Rosett and Tom Lipscomb come to mind--while the lefties are competing against every other media outlet in the land. Even if you're a Daily Kossack, you think you can beat Mary Mapes (formerly) of 60 Minutes on Bush's National Guard duty? She spent 5 years working that story. Nobody in the blogosphere has spent 5 years on any story.
World War II Woman Heroine

She got to meet with Queen Elizabeth. Here's her story:

Modest Betty [Popkiss], who was St John Ambulance girl Betty Quinn in those days, was in fact in the middle of an air raid when she first climbed a ladder to put out burning incendiary bombs, then dug with her bare hands in a desperate bid to free neighbours whose Anderson shelter had suffered a direct hit.

It was just three weeks before the Coventry Blitz of November, 1940.

Sadly, although some of the Worthington family were alive when Betty got them out of the shelter, all subsequently died except one little girl who had missed the blast and dashed up the road to find help.

With shells exploding all around, determined Betty found a spade and ordered a boy who arrived on a bike to go into the house to find blankets. With the kitchen door blown off she remembers he was worried about going into somebody's house uninvited!
Greg Gutfeld Hitting His Stride

What in the world is this man doing at the HuffPo? He's wonderful:

Then I read the Huffington Post, and I realized that, unlike Eve Ensler, Deepak Chopra, Jann Wenner and Hooman Majd, I have absolutely no idea how to respond to terror in a totally cool and nonjudgmental way!

When faced with something truly evil, like Karl Rove's leak, it's easy. Call for the bastard's head.

But what about terrorists - or “bombers” - as the BBC calls them?

That's a tough one, because although what the bombers did was bad - OUR country does some pretty bad things too! And really, who's to say what's bad anyway?

Hat Tip: Junkyard Blog
Terrorists or Bombers?

I listened to Laura Ingraham on the way into work today, and she had a hilarious clip of one of the BBC's talking heads referring relentlessly to the terrorists in London as "bombers". Michelle Malkin makes the same point in today's column:

Across the pond, the British Broadcasting Corporation is taking well-deserved lumps for whitewashing the 7/7 terrorist attacks in London. Editors have reportedly expunged the word "terrorist" from the BBC website and substituted the sanitized "bomber" to describe the killers.

But how sanitized is the word "bomber"? Yes, the BBC is probably trying to be PC here, and they could certainly argue that bomber is more precise than terrorist, since bombing is what they did and terrorism was their intent. But "bomber" certainly has negative connotations to me.

Maybe the New York Times has a better idea with this headline:

Experts Fear Suicide Bomb Is Spreading Into the West

Take the person out of the equation; it's just a bomb, not a bomber.
Hero Cop in Georgia

Another good story:

Marietta police Officer Andrew Phillips will receive the National Public Safety Medal of Valor today in Washington, the first officer from Georgia to receive the award.

President Bush is expected to present Phillips with the nation's highest accolade for bravery in a ceremony at the White House. This is the third year the Medal of Valor, created by the U.S. Justice Department to honor public safety workers who show exceptional courage in the line of duty, has been awarded.

Can't seem to locate a photo online at this point, but I'll try again later.
Heroes Defy Death Cult to Deliver Aid

This is a nice little article.

Far from their Wisconsin and Tennessee homes, members of the U.S. Army National Guard say that no matter where they go in Iraq, their delivery of humanitarian aid produces smiles on the faces of children. It also ratchets up the daily threat of sudden death from car bombers determined to stop the aid.

Task force 1-128, composed of sections of the 1st Battalion, 128th Infantry Regiment of the Wisconsin Army National Guard, and the 3rd Battalion, 278th Infantry Regiment of the Tennessee Army National Guard, has been in Iraq since late 2004. The group is based in Samarra, Iraq, 125 kilometers north of Baghdad, and has distributed supplies to the villages of Albouhaswa, Ahmed Hajam and Ja'afaral Jalaby.

Recently, Specialist Charles Kaufman, from Fairchild, Wis., was killed by a car bomb while driving his Humvee.
Satisfying Stuff

Want to work off some frustrations?

Chris at Lucky Dawg News has some excellent video of jihadis meeting Allah. Definitely turn down the volume before clicking on the link; Chris has set this to an appropriate, but extremely profane, Eminem song.

CrosSwords pointed us to this site, where you can whack Michael Moore around a bit. It's kinda like Lay's potato chips; bet you can't stop at one!
British Intelligence: 200 More Suicide Bombers, 50 Ready to Act Now

A reminder of the dangers of open borders:

Many of the British citizens have been trained in Osama Bin Laden’s terror camps in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria.

And most worryingly of all, they are virtually impossible to identify and round up.
Tuesday, July 12, 2005
Sigh. Something for Nothing Again, From Bill Clinton

This seems to be the Democrats' latest talking point on Global Warming:

The United States ought to recognize the future of clean energy not only as the means to avert climatic disaster, but because it presents a huge, untapped opportunity for job creation and economic growth, Clinton said on Friday.

This never really gets explained in detail; about the only specifics I've heard is that it will create some jobs on Wall Street for people trading the carbon credits. In return for which we'll all pay much higher energy prices.
Story of a Hero Doctor

How ironic is it that an Israeli doctor on a vacation in London, ends up helping bombing victims?

[Benny] Meilik did not waste time, and his speedy response saved lives.

"I have heard enough explosions to know what they sound like, and when I heard the boom I sprung into action," he said later.

Leaving his wife and children at the hotel, which was evacuated moments later by the police, he dashed outside to find out what had happened.

"People were pointing at the tube station and I so I went in." he said. "There was carnage, smoke everywhere, and suddenly paramedics rushed in after me."

It was the start of a tough morning for the doctor, who has treated over 100 victims of the conflict in Israel and is used to seeing the sorts of injuries that greeted him on the platforms of Russell Square.
Monday, July 11, 2005
Finally Something for the Liberals to Get Excited About

Remember after 9-11 the libs didn't have anything to talk about for a couple days, because there was nothing that played to their strong suits of bashing America and Americans? And then some dirtball psycho killed a Sikh convenience store owner in Mesa (I actually had bought soda in that store) because he was wearing a turban, and finally they had something to talk about?

Well, it's happening in Britain.

In the span of a few days, at least four mosques across England, including one here, have been either partially set on fire or firebombed, according to police, and others have had their windows smashed and their doors vandalized.

Still others have had racist graffiti scrawled on their walls. In one case, a mosque was hit by bloody pig parts, a particular offense to a religion that eschews eating pork, said Azad Ali, the chairman of the Muslim Safety Forum, which serves as an advisory group for the police and has been tracking incidents from police reports and community groups.

As I commented when the Sikh was killed, don't go after people who look like the guys who did the bombings. Don't go after people who share the same religion as the guys who did the bombings. Go after the people who actually did the bombings. And then, if you want to splash pig guts all over them, nobody will object.

And yes, I will predict that at least one or two of these incidents will turn out to be completely phony--Muslims committing fake hate crimes against themselves to draw sympathy.
Thank You, Afghan Villagers

Here's a good one:

Afghan villagers sheltered a U.S. Navy SEAL wounded in a battle last month with the Taliban until they could get word to American forces to rescue him, a military official said Monday.

An Afghan villager found the SEAL and hid him in his village, the official said.

According to military accounts, Taliban fighters came to the village and demanded the American be turned over, but villagers refused.

The SEAL wrote a note verifying his identity and location, and a villager carried it to U.S. forces, the official said. The note indicated to U.S. troops that they wouldn't be entering into a trap. The commando was rescued July 3.

Heroes pop up in the most unlikely locations. The Afghan villagers mentioned here clearly qualify.
Guest-Blogging Over At Ankle-Biters

Check out my first post over there, which introduces you to my writing/blogging career.
The British Ethel Rosenberg

Interesting story here, but I gotta wonder why she was never prosecuted.

It is known that many of the technical documents she passed to the Soviets found application in Soviet technology, and in the post-World War II era, her information contributed to the Soviet nuclear arms program. She came to be regarded by her handlers in the KGB as their prize spy, possibly more highly regarded than fellow traitor - and defector - Kim Philby. Honors (the Order of the Red Banner) and thanks - and a pension of £20 a month - were all she ever accepted for her services.
New to the Blogroll

Check out Reaching for Lucidity. I noticed Eban's blog last week when he got picked up (IIRC) in a Wall Street Journal article on bloggers covering the London bombings. Eban came up with the bright idea of taping audioblog posts from the radio/TV, giving the world the chance to hear what the British were saying on their local broadcasts. Excellent stuff.

He's an expat American living in the UK. Looks pretty talented too, with interesting artwork and working on a novel. I particularly enjoyed this post on his homesickness for American sports and occasional problems with the English language as spoken by the British.
Sunday, July 10, 2005
Palmeiro for the Hall?

Heard some of the radio knuckleheads debating this earlier. It's silly. Of course Palmeiro's going to the Hall of Fame; his only way of avoiding it at this point would be Pete Rose's method. He's currently #9 on the all-time home runs list, #16 on the RBI list (with a good chance of moving as high as #10 by the end of the year). He'll be the 26th man to reach 3,000 hits by next weekend.

The most similar batters to him in history are Frank Robinson, Eddie Murray, Reggie Jackson, Mel Ott and Dave Winfield; all are in the Hall of Fame.
Overrated Songs

Michele put up a list of 8 of the most overrated songs in her opinion. One of the typical problems with a list like this is that the immediate question becomes: Who rated them highly in the first place. However, with the exception of November Rain by Guns N Roses, which I've never heard, I think we can safely say that the songs on her list have been generally rated highly by critics and certainly by DJs:

Led Zepellin, Stairway to Heaven: If the question is whether this is one of the greatest rock songs ever, then I'd say that's overrating. Good song, but played to death.

Don McLean, American Pie: I disagree here. It's a terrific song.

Lynyrd Skynyrd, Free Bird: Another good song, but overrated, yeah. It blew everybody away when it it was released because it was one of the first studio songs to have a great guitar jam like a live concert.

Eagles, Hotel California: No arguments here. Never liked the Eagles (except for the Joe Walsh cut, In the City).

Meatloaf, Paradise by the Dashboard Light. I loved it when it came out, especially the way the other Yankees' announcers would give Phil Rizzuto a hard time about appearing on an "X-Rated" record.

The Beatles, Hey Jude. Agreed. Not even close to my favorite Beatles tune.

Bruce Springstein: Born to Run in the USA in His Glory Days. Okay, I guess that's a three-fer. Loved Born to Run when it came out and I still think it holds up. Born in the USA is crap, especially since the song is not particularly patriotic. Glory Days is dull and predictable.

My additions:

Derek & the Dominos, Layla. I like the instrumental portion of the song, but the vocals drive me crazy. Sounds like two guys having a competition to see who can shout "Layla!" the loudest.

Pink Floyd, Money. Don't know how this became their signature hit; probably because it was the single on the monster album.

Supertramp, the Logical Song. The lyrics are just a little too precious for words.

Aerosmith, Walk This Way. I liked some Aerosmith, but this song was annoying the first time I heard it and did not improve with thousands of repititions.

Blogcritics has another list, with many of the same songs as Michele. Oddly, they include Def Leppard's Pour Some Sugar on Me, which gets me back to the problem I mentioned at the beginning of the post: Who rates that song highly?
Red Ken Baited

Looks like Stephen Pollard is about as impressed with Ken Livingstone as I was.

But with Mr Livingstone, the words alone are never enough. They may imply one thing, but his actions usually give them a different meaning. When the Mayor of London condemns indiscriminate slaughter, those actions suggest that it is the word “indiscriminate” that needs to be stressed.
Not All Palestinians Are Crazy

Many of them prefer to live in Israel.

When Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak's diplomacy raised the prospect, in mid-2000, of some Arab-majority parts of Jerusalem being transferred to the PA, a Palestinian Arab social worker found that "an overwhelming majority" of Jerusalem's 200,000 Arabs chose to remain under Israeli control. A member of the Palestinian National Council, Fadal Tahabub, specified that 70% preferred Israeli sovereignty. Another politician, Husam Watad, described people as "in a panic" at the prospect of finding themselves under PA rule.

A doctor applying for Israeli papers explained, "we want to stay in Israel. At least here I can speak my mind freely without being dumped in prison, as well as having a chance to earn an honest day's wage."
Britblog Roundup

Tim Worstall has posted his weekly roundup of British bloggers. Obviously the London bombings are front and center this week. Plenty of stiff-upper lip keeping, some bravado (not undeserved), and reminders of what the generations before have gone through. Terrific stuff, highly recommended. I especially liked the Pub Philosopher's post. And this post choked me up.
Story of the Man Helping the Woman in the Mask

Here are a couple of articles on that story. The photo above has become the iconic one of the 7/7 attacks.

"I see nothing heroic about what I did," says [Paul] Dadge. "You simply do what you have to do. You don't think about it, you just do it -- like a lot of people here did."

That, of course, is precisely what all heroes say.
The Kind of Gun Control We Can All Support--Updated

Demonstrated by 79-year-old
Gayle Martin:

Two burglary suspects were hospitalized Saturday after a 79-year-old homeowner said he opened fire on them after they broke into his Ellen Kay Drive residence.

The men, whose names were not available, were listed in serious and fair condition at University Hospital in Cincinnati, a nursing supervisor said. They were flown by medical helicopter after the pre-dawn shooting.

Middleton also said Martin's marksmanship was impressive. "He's a good shot," he said.

Update: Armed Victim would have been an appropriate place to post this story. Who knew?
The Rove Story

Newsweek now has it up. David Corn highlighted its arrival last night at the HuffPo, but it doesn't say what he indicated. His piece is headlined on the HuffPo front page as:

HuffPost's Corn: Newsweek Docs Show Rove Leaked CIA Agent's Name...

Yet when you read the article, it states:

Nothing in the Cooper e-mail suggests that Rove used Plame's name or knew she was a covert operative.

Captain Ed yawns over the story here.

MacRanger says the story only tells us what we already knew; that Joseph Wilson was a liar.


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Brainster in the Media

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Lefty Bloggers on Gay Witchhunt (linked by 16 blogs including Instapundit)

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