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March 25, 2004
A Handful of Headlines

In Mexico, efforts are still under way to rescue the trapped explorers.

Freedom and democracy. They're wonderful things. I wonder if we're going to succeed in giving them to Afghanistan?

Suicide bombers are one thing, heinous as the idea seems to the civilized mind, but co-opting unwilling or unwitting children takes it to a whole new level. Condemnation of this tactic is spreading.

The 9/11 commission seems to be discovering what I always expected them to discover. There were plenty of warning signs but we can't "blame" anyone in particular. I've always thought (and said) that after the fact, it's easy to say, this and that and that were clear markers what was being planned. Before the attack, these "clues" were just another handful of items in a list of thousands of 'intelligence' items, okay?

Do I believe the Bush Administration took an al Qaeda threat seriously before 9/11? Not really. I do believe they were focused on Bush's open devotion to the idea of removing or killing Saddam Hussein. But did they ignore proof of an immediate, imminent, large-scale threat? No. I think they're idiots, based on our ideological differences, but I don't think they're criminally insane.

Similarly, the Bush Administration's predictable steps in their attempt to discredit Clarke are . . . predictable political maneuvering, not proof of the blackness of their hearts.

These attempts won't succeed, Clarke isn't some partisan hack they can smear with impunity, but a lot of their attempts to make the bad stuff go away are failing these days (What price Medicare reform?) so this is just one more item on the list. Not that I don't have sympathy for Clarke, but after a lifetime in the government, I assume he knew what he was letting himself in for.

(In whose imagination has the Bush Administration been heretofore scandal-free"? It's amazing isn't it? It really is as though people living in D.C. are on a different planet sometimes.)

The Guardian Weblog offers us a roundup of links about the Clarke story.

Of course, they never seem to be able to resist a re-election stunt.

And we seem to be crusaders again, which does not please those of us who don't view the Crusades as admirable chapters in Western history.

Tom DeLay, felon?

Is the Israel-USofA love story coming to an end?

And, speaking of Israel, the world doesn't approve of their latest assassination, but it seems that Israel doesn't care.

John Kerry may have refused to name the "foreign leaders" who were privately supporting his bid to unseat Bush in November, but foreign politicians themselves aren't so shy of publicity.

And it looks like I'm not the only one annoyed and saddened by the removal of NPR's Bob Edwards from Morning Edition.

Posted by AnneZook at 10:30 AM