Friday, August 11, 2006


Terror, terror everywhere—and not a drop to drink

The latest revelation from the United Kingdom—that explosives come in liquid form and that there are a number of British Muslims who would like to use them aboard an airliner—has left me thankful I didn't invest in that little duty-free shop at the airport.

The arrests, reminiscent of several others where young Muslims have gathered together, were announced without presenting a shred of evidence of a threat. When you consider the length of the investigation (it's been ongoing since at least December 2005), you would think that someone would've considered the PR implications and maybe prepared a little tape of a telephone conversation or a photograph that could be released to the public. But of course PR was the last thing on the minds of the British government at the time of the announcement, I suppose.

The British security services are also to be congratulated on the caution they took this time with their firearms. They didn't wait for anyone to board a plane and then shoot him in the head, as they did with innocent Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes as he boarded a tube train. In fact, they didn't even wound anybody, as they did in the case of innocent suspect Mohammed Abdul Kahar when they invaded the family home at Forest Gate.1

While the absence of details accompanying the news announcement may have been regrettable, what little there was was sufficient to provide America's public television with enough inspiration to devote the entire hour to discussions of the arrests and their implications.

Ray Suarez of The NewsHour began his opening summary by announcing the British announcement of the arrest, then quickly reviewed the effect of the announcement on the price of oil and the stock market. In a spectacular blitz of reporting, over in less than two minutes, Suarez went on to mention the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, the daily suicide bombing in Iraq (35 killed), the displacement last month of 25,000 people from Darfur in Sudan, and the worst typhoon to hit China in 50 years—all so that we could get to the important stuff.

And what was the important stuff?

All in all, it was as fine a day of news coverage as I can remember.

Cynics have questioned the timing of the arrests. Could they have in any way been linked to Ned Lamont's win over Senator Lieberman in the Connecticut primary? That is silly. In fact, the threat was so great that by the end of the day we had pretty much forgotten that the election even took place.

Here's how bad it was—

So you can see that the November elections were the last thing on anybody's mind. In fact, if the Bush administration can't convince the Congress to provide it with "retroactive war crime protection," my guess is that they'll just decide to call the whole thing off—there'll be too much terror about to have time for elections.



1The police were exonerated of wrongdoing in both cases. But in the case of Kahar, child pornography was discovered on his home computer, so he was arrested for that instead of terrorism charges. The shooting would have been justified in any case. [back]

Wednesday, August 09, 2006


Opinion of the Day

The conclusion from the four-week-old war against Lebanon is that the US would have defended the Lebanese had Syria assaulted them, but Israel can create havoc in the country and destroy the nation with full backing from the US. —Duraid Al Baik, Foreign Editor of Gulf News (United Arab Emirates) in "The US cannot lead the world anymore"


Tuesday, August 08, 2006


Cuban Immigration Plan of the Day

The plan would crack down on smugglers and refuse U.S. entry to Cuban government officials who have engaged in human-rights abuses. But it would make it easier for some Cuban doctors to move to the U.S. —Anita Snow in "Leftists' letter asks U.S. not to meddle in Cuban matters"

Yes, boys and girls. There's a doctor shortage looming in your future, created in part by the AMA's desire to boost physician income and in part by the U.S. government's reduction of funds (beginning with Reagan) to train doctors who would serve the "underserved."

Will Cuban doctors save our ass? Or at least treat it?

Related posts
First American graduate from Cuban medical school (8/26/05)
Healthcare costs: The deception continues (4/25/06)
Factlet of the Day (6/3/06)



Back to School!

Kirsten Hyder, 5, undergoes fingerprinting by Junior Auxiliary member Shauna Wiley during the Warren County School System’s back-to-school event held in cooperation with Three Star Mall yesterday. Kirsten will be attending kindergarten at West Elementary.  —Photo with caption from Southern Standard

Related posts
No foul in S.C. state terrorism of high-school students (8/20/04)
Addicting students to fascism (1/10/05)


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