News and Not News

October 19th, 2006

NOT NEWS

The Central Criminal Court of Iraq convicted 65 people from September 15 to October 4 for various crimes including possession of illegal weapons; using or forging IDs and weapons permits; heading, leading, and joining armed groups; escaping from prison; attempted use of explosives; threatening another person with commission of felony against his person or property; and illegal border crossing.

NOT NEWS

Soldiers detained 15 suspected insurgents, discovered two vehicles being fitted as suicide vehicle borne improvised explosive devices, and found a significant weapons cache during Operation Dealer, Oct. 12, in the Ta’meen area in western Ramadi.

NEWS

What Iranians Want

October 18th, 2006

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard and Hezbollah are running Shia death squads in Iraq–according to no less a source than Moqtada al-Sadr.

If there are Iranians and Hezbollah terrorists out killing Sunni and other political enemies in Iraq, they are not there just for the shear joy of killing Sunni Arabs.

There is a larger method to the killings.

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More Coup Clucking

October 17th, 2006

For months now, there has been a low level meme in the MSM about a pending coup in Iraq.

No, it will not be a Thai style coup, as much as a voluntary change in form of government.

David Ignatius has the latest iteration of the proposed coup via Realclearpolitics.

Calling any of the options in Ignatius’ column a coup is a disservice to the bananna republic colonels in mirrored sunglasses everywhere.

When the current elected leadership voluntarily steps aside, it is not a coup.

Bringing back Ayad Allawi as a “strongman” is not a coup.

But, I guess coup sounds more menacing than change in government.

More on the Lancet’s “October Surprise”

October 16th, 2006

In  our posting of October 12th, the Daily Digest challenged the 10-11-06 Lancet article titled “Mortality after the 2003 invasion of Iraq: a cross-sectional cluster sample survey.”  The Johns Hopkins authors, led by Gilbert Burnham, purported to prove that the U.S.-led coalition had caused 650,000 deaths in Iraq – a number ten-to-twenty times greater than other researchers had averred.

Our critique focused on two issues:

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Fit To Print

October 13th, 2006

“A Multi-National Division-North Soldier assigned to the 3rd Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division from Fort Bragg, N.C., died Friday, Oct. 6, as a result of enemy action while conducting operations near the city of Bayji.”

Stupid Time at the Lancet

October 12th, 2006

In the current on-line Lancet (10/11/06), a team of Johns Hopkins authors headed by Prof. Gilbert Burnham present a calculation of Iraqi civilian casualties ten times greater than that of the Brooking Institute, and twenty times greater than that of the Pentagon.

“We estimate,” write the authors, “that as of July, 2006, there have been 654,965 excess Iraqi deaths as a consequence of the war.” 

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Not Fit to Print II

October 11th, 2006

“Among the detainees were three high value individuals, including the number nine person on the division’s high-value target list and two others on the squadron’s high-value target list.

“The number nine HVI has allegedly been directly responsible for murders, extra judicial killings, criminal activities and attacks on Iraqi Security Forces and Coalition Forces, said Lt. Col. Brian Winski, commander, 1st Sqdn., 61st Cav. Regt.”

Explaining Success Away

October 10th, 2006

Army tops recruit goal by lowering standards,” screams the headline tacked onto an Associated Press story posted at MSNBC.com

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Not Fit To Print

October 9th, 2006

“Elsewhere in Al Anbar on Wednesday eight enemy were killed in action.  There were no Coalition Forces deaths.

“One insurgent was killed while laying an IED in Ramadi.  Six more insurgents engaged coalition forces in a separate event in Ramadi and were killed.  One armed insurgent was killed before he could attack the government center in Ramadi.”

Would This Leak Get A Headline?

October 9th, 2006

After reading the declassified portions of the National Intelligence Estimate, one has to wonder why only half the story was leaked?

And if the other half was leaked, would it have made headlines?

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