Saturday, March 22, 2003

Nation at war: More causalities

Sky news is reporting that 4 US Army soldiers were killed when their reconnaissance vehicles came under propelled grenade attacks.

This oil is getting damn expensive.
British: 14
American: 11

Nation at war: More casulities

The brits suffer more losses Here’s the story

Unrelated: Another US Marine dies in firefight.

Bush’s body count:
British: 14
American: 7

UPDATE: MSNBC is reporting that one soldier in that chopper was a US Navy officer. Count updated.

Nation at War: I thought we were the good guys

If this fight is about illegal weapons, may I suggest this reading: [UPDATE 3/24: Link removed, story has changed.]

Marine Cobra helicopter gunships firing Hellfire missiles swept in low from the south. Then the marine howitzers, with a range of 30 kilometres, opened a sustained barrage over the next eight hours. They were supported by US Navy aircraft which dropped 40,000 pounds of explosives and napalm, a US officer told the Herald.

A legal expert at the International Committee of the Red Cross in Geneva said the use of napalm or fuel air bombs was not illegal "per se" because the US was not a signatory to the 1980 weapons convention which prohibits and restricts certain weapons. "But the US has to apply the basic principles of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and take all precautions to protect civilians. In the case of napalm and fuel air bombs, these are special precautions because these are area weapons, not specific weapons," said Dominique Loye, the committee's adviser on weapons and IHL.

With the way the Iraq army is folding, all they had to do is get David Bloom out there on a donkey and they would surrender to him. Why do we see a need to cover them in fire?

I now officially retract my statement where I commended the armed forces in how they were fighting this war.

Friday, March 21, 2003

Nation at war: Media Whores

Today it happened. Today the media got their promised “shock and awe.” Finally, they can sleep soundly.

If ever there was an example as to why I left journalism, it’s this.

Although I don’t approve of the war, I do approve of how they are fighting this war. The Bush administration decided to try a surgical strike to “decapitate” the leadership of Iraq from the soldiers below. Two days of light bombing, causing little damage and advancing forward with little resistance showed that this could be a somewhat bloodless war. And the media was not happy.

“The white house promised us a bombardment of “shock and awe” said Lester holt on Tuesday. “Still, no sign of Operation: Shock and Awe,” Said a disappointed Wolf Blitzer.

It’s sick, it’s twisted, and it’s America’s news networks. All the networks see this as their chance to have a CNN moment. If you remember from '91, during Gulf War 1.0, CNN was a struggling 24 hour news network. The world events during that time brought the network to be the premier news source with it’s 24 hour coverage, and reporters right beside the targets of the bombs. It made CNN what it is.

The sad fact is that diplomacy is boring. You just don’t get good b-roll showing Hans Blix talking to a table of diplomats. It’s not good imagery to show security council debates. They want action.

And today, action they got. From the foreplay of the B-52’s taking off from bases in England, to the Wargasm of this afternoon’s events, Lester Holt and crew got what they wanted, live feeds of death and chaos.

It doesn’t stop there. MSNBC’s embedded reporter, David Bloom is riding around Iraq on a glorified tow truck. He has learned a buzz word: “Bradley.” If he doesn’t know what the piece of military hardware is, he calls it a Bradley. The sand is covering his hair, he’s wearing fatigues and a flak jacket, and you can almost see the discust his 3rd mech. Inf. “hosts” have for him.

The reporter for the 3rd marine Expeditionary Unit actually came under fire. In his next report, he referred to the marines as his “brothers in arms” and that they have to watch out for each other. Somehow I think I reporter and cameraman isn’t going to do much to cover a marine in a foxhole.

And, just now, on NBC Nightly news, they closed with a “In their own words” piece from the mother of the helicopter pilot that was killed last night. She said that all the new technology is great, but it’s important to remember that there are mothers and wives watching, and it’s killing them to see this. Tom Brokaw, sucking up the Pathos, closed with: “As the marines say, Semper Fi.”

Semper Fi, indeed.

War: Chopper Crash +1

The first casulities have happened. A Sky King crash kills 4 US chopper crewmen, and 8 British Commandos.

The CBC radio is reporting that a marine from the 1st M.E.U. was Killed in action.


Thursday, March 20, 2003

A Sad Day: War begins

Although this will probably be a quick victory for the armed forces, it is an embarrassment to American diplomacy. It shows an absolute failure by the Bush Administration in foreign policy.

We are committed now, and must see it through.

But, as a quiet little protest, this blog will remain black until the fighting is over.

Wednesday, March 19, 2003


I love Bartcop. Click the image for the full issue.

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

US at War: Endgame

There is something fishy going on.

I just finished reading (well, actually listening to) Endgame: Solving the Iraq Problem Once and for All.

It gives a fascinating history of Iraq, and Saddam Hussein. That’s the majority of the book. Along with this is hauntingly familiar phrases, which could be ripped from today’s headline. Read these, knowing that the book was written in 1999

Remote piloted Vehicle program, Al-Sumoot (sp) missile program, Close ties with France.

(I apologize for no credits, as it is an audio book I listened to, I cannot reference pages, or provide exact quotes. You will have to trust me that they are RIGHT ON with what we are hearing today)

But, then he lays out his endgame.

Ritter provides two solutions. The second of these is a political and diplomatic plan. It would involve setting up a committee between us and Iraq, and each side granting concessions to the issue at hand.

The first of these, is military action. Ritter is DEAD ON with how the Bush Administration is handling this solution. Ritter even was correct to the number of troops necessary to complete such an action: 250,000. He laid out the workings with Kurdish forces in the north. Ritter referred to this as the “Arnold Plan”, which he says was shelved as soon as it was created, shortly after the Gulf War.

Ritter is even exact with how the nation will react to a pre-emptive military strike. He predicts accurately that the nation, as well as the world, will be divided. He predicts that this division will come from the United Nations tendencies towards containment.

Apparently, the “Arnold plan” has come off the shelf, and had the dust blown off of it. This book is SO DEAD ON that I had to wonder if Ritter is currently advising the Bush administration.

Off to google I go, only to find this.

Ritter has apparently had a change of heart about Iraq.

“Iraq is not a sponsor of the kind of terror perpetrated against the United States on September 11 and in fact is active in suppressing the sort of fundamental extremism that characterizes those who attacked the United States on that horrible day," Ritter said.

He later denied allegations that Iraq Interfered in the inspection process, a point he illuminates continuously through Endgame.

Ok, now I’m thoroughly confused. Although I stand by my belief that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, I do believe that they are hiding weapons. I now question which is right? The book? Or what he’s saying now?

Continuing on, I find this.

To get to the meat of the matter, it’s this:

We hate to say it, but Scott Ritter has apparently sold out. He received $400,000 from an Iraqi-American businessman with close ties to Saddam for the purpose of producing a documentary called "In Shifting Sands." The Weekly Standard described it as a film that "would chronicle the weapons-inspection process" and quoted Ritter as saying it would "de-demonize" Iraq.

Does this guy suffer from ODD (oppositional defiant disorder) or something?

Dig deeper, and you find this

Ah, so Mr. Ritter is in a sex scandal. Could Iraq be blackmailing him to say the message they want us to hear?

This is messing me up. So, could Endgame be right on, and his current words wrong? Or is it the other way? The book rings far too true to be made up.

Or, is the hawks of this country making up charges to discredit Ritter’s change of heart? He would be a fantastic spokesman for the anti-war movement, as long as he doesn’t have the stigma of pedophile attached to him.

I know, you are saying: "But wait, Craig, America wouldn't do that, would it?" In this article dated JANUARY of this year, Scott alleges the United states of creating false evidence against Iraq. Now we find out he was right.

AHH! My head is going to explode.

There is a puppeteer pulling Scott’s strings. I have little doubt of that. I just have to wonder what flag that puppet master is serving.

Anyone who can help me shed light on this, please put in some comments. I'm really confused by this.

Monday, March 17, 2003

Nation at War: No UN Vote

Is anyone surprised that there shall be no UN vote on the issue of Iraq? After all, this is the same administration that saw to it that your vote did not count in the 2000 elections.

I would also like to remind you, the Meatstack reading audience that in Bush’s “Press Conference” of Bush’s Promise of calling for a vote.

I’ll summarize here:

THE PRESIDENT:Let's see here. Elizabeth.

Elizabeth: Thank you, Mr. President. As you said, the Security Council faces a vote next week on a resolution implicitly authorizing an attack on Iraq. Will you call for a vote on that resolution, even if you aren't sure you have the vote?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, first, I don't think -- it basically says that he's in defiance of 1441. That's what the resolution says. And it's hard to believe anybody is saying he isn't in defiance of 1441, because 1441 said he must disarm. And, yes, we'll call for a vote.

Elizabeth: No matter what?

THE PRESIDENT: No matter what the whip count is, we're calling for the vote. We want to see people stand up and say what their opinion is about Saddam Hussein and the utility of the United Nations Security Council. And so, you bet. It's time for people to show their cards, to let the world know where they stand when it comes to Saddam.

Um….where’s the vote???

Dean in 2004?: First Blogging Prez Candidate

To be honest, I haven’t started looking for a candidate for 2004 yet. I'm been really focusing on the possible war.

That being said, Howard Dean gets points from me to be the first presidential candidate to use a blog in their campaign. This scores a point with me. I'm going to try to do some research on this guy, hopefully have something for the Meatstack by Sunday.

There is a quiz to see what political sterotype you are. Here are my results:

Democrat - You believe that there should be a free
market which is reigned in by a modest state
beaurocracy. You think that capitalism has
some good things, but that those it helps
should be obliged to help out their fellow man
a little. Your historical role model is
Franklin Rosevelt.

Which political sterotype are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

Sunday, March 16, 2003

Sunday Commentary: More terror levels?

There is talk now of a new threat level to be added to the “rainbow of terror”. This level, as reported in CNN may be added “within orange”

Where do I sign up to get a job like Tom Ridge’s? it took him eight months to come up with five colors, later suggesting duct tape and plastic sheets for biological protection, and now the system we have proves to be inadequate.

Because I do care, and because I too want to see our nation safe, may I suggest the following terror levels be added “within Orange.” Colors provided by crayola.

Sunglow – High Terror threat only due to a Def Leppard reunion tour

Bittersweet – High Terror treat but only to the liberal community

Neon Carrot – High Terror threat due to genetically altered bunny rabbits planted in the lettuce fields of California by Al-Queda operatives.

Sunset Orange – It’s really red, but we don’t have the stones to say it.

This is asinine, and quite frankly, for par with Tom Ridge’s work. As Governor of Pennsylvania, Ridge managed to double the amount of municipal waste imported to the state.

Under Ridge’s watchful eye, Pennsylvania was one of only four states to lose population. Pennsylvania’s census count was reduced by 50,000 residents, My wife and I are two of, by the way.

Ridge has allowed small cities like Johnstown and Altoona to flounder, and allowed Cities like Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to develop such a high cost of living that educated people are abandoning the state in search of jobs and a decent standard of living.

Ridge is now applying his management skills for the entire nation. What’s the warning color for that?

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