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Saturday, October 06, 2007
US WWII Interrogators Violated Geneva Convention

We can surely expect the media to denounce this, right?

Nearly 4,000 prisoners of war, most of them German scientists and submariners, were brought in for questioning for days, even weeks, before their presence was reported to the Red Cross, a process that did not comply with the Geneva Conventions. Many of the interrogators were refugees from the Third Reich.

Oh, no, wait, these guys are denouncing the Bush Administration, so they're heroes:

"We got more information out of a German general with a game of chess or Ping-Pong than they do today, with their torture," said Henry Kolm, 90, an MIT physicist who had been assigned to play chess in Germany with Hitler's deputy, Rudolf Hess.

One thing that always annoys me about the anti-"torture" people is that they try to have their cake and eat it too. Not only is torture inhumane, they say, but it doesn't work. Stick with the humane argument; you are not going to convince me that playing a little Ping-Pong with Khalid Sheikh Muhammed is more effective than waterboarding.
Friday, October 05, 2007
Hitchens on a Hero

This is a terrific article on a young man who was inspired by Hitchens' writing to sign up for the military, and who died in Iraq. Keep the Kleenex handy!

I had already guessed that this was no gung-ho Orange County Republican clan. It was pretty clear that they could have done without the war, and would have been happier if their son had not gone anywhere near Iraq. (Mr. Daily told me that as a young man he had wondered about going to Canada if the Vietnam draft ever caught up with him.) But they had been amazed by the warmth of their neighbors' response, and by the solidarity of his former brothers-in-arms—1,600 people had turned out for Mark's memorial service in Irvine. A sergeant's wife had written a letter to Linda and posted it on Janet's MySpace site on Mother's Day, to tell her that her husband had been in the vehicle with which Mark had insisted on changing places. She had seven children who would have lost their father if it had gone the other way, and she felt both awfully guilty and humbly grateful that her husband had been spared by Mark's heroism. Imagine yourself in that position, if you can, and you will perhaps get a hint of the world in which the Dailys now live: a world that alternates very sharply and steeply between grief and pride.

Highly recommended!

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Tuesday, October 02, 2007
McCain: Momentum in New Hampshire?

Is this the Petraeus effect?

"Sen. John McCain attended what was more of a block party than a house party in Hollis Sunday. Dr. Jim and Jan Squires hosted the presidential hopeful and close to 300 people at their Pepperell Road home, wrapping up a busy two days in New Hampshire for McCain." (Joseph G. Cote, "McCain Makes Quick Stop At Hollis Party," Nashua Telegraph, 10/1/07)

New Hampshire Presidential Watch Blog: "McCain Draws Big Crowds At Saturday Events," Including "Standing Room Only" Town Hall In Epping. "I've been told that today McCain was able to draw some big crowds to his events. At an Exeter house party McCain drew about 250 people. While at the American Legion Hall in Epping it was standing room only." (Cosmo, "McCain Draws Big Crowds At Saturday Events," New Hampshire Presidential Watch Blog, 9/29/07)

Note as well that pollsters are starting to pick up McCain's surge, with the latest American Research Group poll showing him tied in New Hampshire with Rudy Giuliani, and only four points behind Mitt Romney (who led McCain by 15 points only last month).

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Monday, October 01, 2007
Woman Strangles Self While In Custody

What a strange (and sad) story this is:

Carol Ann Gotbaum was arrested at the airport Friday for alleged disorderly conduct, said Phoenix Police Department spokesman Sgt. Andy Hill.

Police handcuffed Gotbaum with her hands behind her back and took her a holding cell, where she was later found dead, said Hill.

Police "found her with the handcuffs up by her neck area," Hill said. Gotbaum was unconscious and police and firefighters tried to revive her by CPR and other means, Hill said. "They could not revive her and tragically, she died."

I know, I know, you're wondering how this could have happened. A commenter at Lucianne suggested that she probably managed to get the handcuffs around the front by sliding them down past her rump, and then slipping her legs through. Then she may have put her hands behind her neck to get leverage to try to slip one hand out of the cuffs, but by doing so put pressure on her neck, cutting off the flow of blood to the brain. Sounds odd, I know, but certainly less odd than the alternative, which is that one of the police strangled her.

BTW, I'm going out on a limb here to guess that she was flying US Airways (fka America West), which is consistently and infuriatingly late, to the point where I won't fly them if there is any other option. And, looking later in the story:

A US Airways spokesman told the New York Daily News that Gotbaum's flight to Tucson, Arizona, was preparing to leave when she arrived at the gate.

Traveling alone, Gotbaum rebooked on a following flight, but "she became extremely irate, apparently running up and down the gate area," airline spokesman Derek Hanna told the Daily News.




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