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:: EYE (anatomy), light-sensitive organ of vision in animals.
:: EYE (verb), to look at to look at something or somebody inquisitively.
:: EYE (noun), an ability to recognize and appreciate something; a point of view or way of thinking.

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:: 8.28.2006 ::  

Katrina: a look back


:: Deb 12:56 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

Taking terror seriously: a handy guide by Tom Tomorrow


:: Deb 12:35 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 8.25.2006 ::  

bin Laden's "indispensable ally": US foreign policy

Ex-CIA analyst says US policies in Islamic world have given boost to Al-Qaeda and its leaders.

WASHINGTON - The former head of the CIA unit hunting Osama bin Laden unit said Wednesday that US policy in the Middle East has given a boost to Al-Qaeda and its leader.

"Today, bin Laden, Al-Qaeda and their allies have only one indispensable ally: the US foreign policy towards the Islamic world," said Michael Scheuer, who led the bin Laden unit from 1996-1999.

"Time is not on America's side. We're clearly losing," Scheuer told a government security conference in Washington.

"We're at a point where Al-Qaeda and bin Laden are changing into Al-Qaedism and bin Ladenism - a philosophy and a movement rather than a man and an organization," the former CIA analyst said.

"More than any other factor, the US invasion of Iraq and the prolonged occupation of this country has produced this transformation."

Scheuer said bin Laden has focused on US policies in the Islamic world, such as the US military presence of Iraq and Afghanistan, its economic and military support to Israel and its "decades old support for apostate and tyrannical government across the Islamic world."

"The cumulative impact of several events over the past two years have gone a good ways towards increasing Muslim hatred for Americans simply because they are Americans," he said, pointing to the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal, the treatment of detainees at the Guantanamo prison camp and caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed printed in European and US newspapers.

"Each of these events are unfortunate but not terribly serious for the Western minds. But from the Muslim perspective they are deliberate and vicious attacks against the things that guide their lives and their faiths," he said.

Scheuer, who resigned from the CIA in November 2004, is the author of "Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror," which was published with the approval of the CIA despite its damning conclusion that US actions are inflaming a global Muslim insurgency.
On Middle East Online; link thanks to Jonathan Schwarz on Tom Tomorrow's blog.

:: Deb 10:44 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 8.17.2006 ::  

Heather B. Armstrong is a funny lady

Check out her blog if you don't believe me.

Thanks to Jonathan Schwartz on ThisModernWorld for the link.

And by the way, this a very well-trained dog.

:: Deb 1:50 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 8.07.2006 ::  

SF Connect: serve your city for a day

This sounds cool. I hope it goes well.

Thanks to Toshiyasu for the link.

:: Deb 1:32 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

Bush on Global Warming

Will Farrell returns with his spot-on impression of God's Choice for President of the United States.

:: Deb 11:16 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 8.02.2006 ::  

Images to come

I know it's been a while since I posted any pics; I'll try to do so soon. Most of the stuff I've taken lately has been of my 13-month-old daughter (big surprise there, I know.) I do have some nice photos I took at San Francisco's Conservatory of Flowers last January, as well.

:: Deb 2:59 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

Must-see TV

My current favorites:

The Daily Show, Mon-Thurs. Comedy Central
Rescue Me, Tues. FX
The Office, [unknown]
CSI, Thurs. CBS
30 Days, Wed. FX
Iron Chef, Mon.-Fri. Food
Iron Chef America, Sunday Food
The Sopranos (final season begins in the fall, I believe), Sunday HBO

Hmmm. I need to find TV I like with a female lead.

:: Deb 2:46 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

Howard Dean had it right on Iraq

The below post was lifted wholesale from Tom Tomorrow's blog (can you tell I'm catching up on my political reading?)
Looking backwards

Via Greenwald, here’s what unhinged loonie leftist Howard Dean was saying in February of 2003:

To this day, the President has not made a case that war against Iraq, now, is necessary to defend American territory, our citizens, our allies, or our essential interests.

The Administration has not explained how a lasting peace, and lasting security, will be achieved in Iraq once Saddam Hussein is toppled.

I, for one, am not ready to abandon the search for better answers.

As a doctor, I was trained to treat illness, and to examine a variety of options before deciding which to prescribe. I worried about side effects and took the time to see what else might work before proceeding to high-risk measures. . . .

We have been told over and over again what the risks will be if we do not go to war.

We have been told little about what the risks will be if we do go to war.

If we go to war, I certainly hope the Administration’s assumptions are realized, and the conflict is swift, successful and clean. I certainly hope our armed forces will be welcomed like heroes and liberators in the streets of Baghdad. I certainly hope Iraq emerges from the war stable, united and democratic. I certainly hope terrorists around the world conclude it is a mistake to defy America and cease, thereafter, to be terrorists.

It is possible, however, that events could go differently, and that the Iraqi Republican Guard will not sit out in the desert where they can be destroyed easily from the air.

It is possible that Iraq will try to force our troops to fight house to house in the middle of cities - on its turf, not ours - where precision-guided missiles are of little use. . . .

There are other risks. Iraq is a divided country, with Sunni, Shia and Kurdish factions that share both bitter rivalries and access to large quantities of arms.

Iran and Turkey each have interests in Iraq they will be tempted to protect with or without our approval. . . .

Some people simply brush aside these concerns, saying there were also a lot of dire predictions before the first Gulf War, and that those didn’t come true.

We have learned through experience to have confidence in our armed forces - and that confidence is very well deserved.

But if you talk to military leaders, they will tell you there is a big difference between pushing back the Iraqi armed forces in Kuwait and trying to defeat them on their home ground.

There are limits to what even our military can do. Technology is not the solution to every problem.

And here’s a description of what the very serious thinker Paul Wolfowitz was saying at the same moment in time:

In his testimony, Mr. Wolfowitz ticked off several reasons why he believed a much smaller coalition peacekeeping force than General Shinseki envisioned would be sufficient to police and rebuild postwar Iraq. He said there was no history of ethnic strife in Iraq, as there was in Bosnia or Kosovo. He said Iraqi civilians would welcome an American-led liberation force that “stayed as long as necessary but left as soon as possible,” but would oppose a long-term occupation force. And he said that nations that oppose war with Iraq would likely sign up to help rebuild it. “I would expect that even countries like France will have a strong interest in assisting Iraq in reconstruction,” Mr. Wolfowitz said.

:: Deb 1:14 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

:: 8.01.2006 ::  


Just going thru and renovating the code on this blog.... Blogger has come up with a few new features since I started this site! Hopefully you won't notice any adverse effects...

:: Deb 5:21 PM :: permalink :: [1] comments :: links to this post ::

Sunday, Bloody Sunday

Sing it, George. Awesome.

More from the same artist at thepartyparty.com

Yes, it's Tom Tomorrow time again.

:: Deb 12:45 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

Bagdad dissolves into chaos, while the world watches Beirut

Some 3,149 people were killed in June alone, or more than 100 a day, and the figure is likely to rise higher this month because of tit-for-tat massacres by Sunni and Shia Muslims. Some 120 Shias were killed in two attacks earlier in the week and gunmen yesterday kidnapped 20 employees of a government agency in Baghdad looking after Sunni mosques and shrines.

The death toll has risen every month this year and totalled 5,818 in May and June. This far exceeds the number given by the Iraqi Coalition Casualty Count, a web site that compiles casualty figures based on published accounts, which said that 840 civilians died in June. Overall 14,000 civilians were killed in the first half of the year says the UN.

Ever since the invasion in 2003 the US military and later US-supported Iraqi governments have sought to conceal the number of Iraqi civilians being killed. The US Army for long denied that it counted the number of civilians killed by its soldiers. The Iraqi Ministry of Health also refused to reveal to the UN the civilian casualty figures.

Now, for the first time, the health ministry in Baghdad has told the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, which publishes a bimonthly report on human rights, the exact death toll recorded by hospitals around the country. The central morgue in Baghdad provides figures for unidentified bodies, of which there were 1,595 in June. In the first six months of the year the number of Iraqi civilians dying violently rose by 77 per cent.
But wait, there's more:
"Iraq as a political project is finished," a senior government official was quoted as saying, adding: "The parties have moved to plan B." He said that the Shia, Sunni and Kurdish parties were now looking at ways to divide Iraq between them and to decide the future of Baghdad, where there is a mixed population. "There is serious talk of Baghdad being divided into [Shia] east and [Sunni] west," he said.

Hoshyar Zebari, the Iraqi Foreign Minister, told me in an interview, before joining Mr Maliki to fly to London and then Washington, that in theory the government should be able to solve the crisis because Shia, Kurd and Sunni were elected members of it.

But he painted a picture of a deeply divided administration in which senior Sunni members praised anti-government insurgents as "the heroic resistance".


"The government is all in the Green Zone like the previous one and they have left the streets to the terrorists," said Mahmoud Othman, a veteran Iraqi politician. He said the situation would be made worse by the war in Lebanon because it would intensify the struggle between Iran and the US being staged in Iraq. The Iraqi crisis would now receive much reduced international attention.

The switch of American and British media attention to Lebanon and away from the rapidly deteriorating situation in Baghdad is much to the political benefit of Mr Bush and Mr Blair.

[emphasis addeed]
Read the rest here, while it's still online for free. Link thanks (again) to Tom Tomorrow.

:: Deb 12:37 PM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

Quote of the Day: Brownie speaks out

“Dealing with horses’ asses taught me how to deal with the federal government.”
That's former FEMA chief Michael Brown, who unloaded on his former employers in an August Playboy interview.

Yep, you read that correctly.

Thanks to Tom Tomorrow for the link.

:: Deb 11:30 AM :: permalink :: [0] comments :: links to this post ::

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