Monthly Archives: February 2011

Know what? Things are going pretty well in Afghanistan…

The ‘Long War’ May Be Getting Shorter – Afghan Army troop strength has increased remarkably. The sheer scale of the effort at the Kabul Military Training Center has to be seen to be appreciated. Rows of new barracks surround

Posted in Miscellany

Next up after Gaddafi… Sarah Palin?

More Scoop On Palin: Her Reliable Media Mouthpieces – The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan Frank Bailey’s co-authored manuscript, “Blind Allegiance To Sarah Palin,” which leaked out via his agent’s emails to potential publishers, is dynamite. Why? Because Bailey

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Gaddafi goin’ down hard…

Live Blog – Libya | Al Jazeera Blogs     7:56pm: Al Jazeera Arabic is speaking to a political activist in Tripoli, who tells us there are airstrikes “all over Tripoli”. There is death, fear – and women are crying

Posted in Miscellany

Libya clashes spread…

Libya clashes spread to Tripoli – Africa – Al Jazeera English   There were also reports of protesters heading to Gaddafi’s compound in the city of Al-Zawia near Tripoli, with the intention of burning the building down. Meanwhile the head of the Al-Zuwayya tribe

Posted in Miscellany

So much for annihilating the Taliban to the last man along with overly sympathetic journalists…

The Obama Administration and the Taliban : The New Yorker   On August 22, 1998, Mullah Omar, the emir of Taliban-ruled Afghanistan, made a cold call to the State Department. The United States had just lobbed cruise missiles at Al

Posted in Miscellany

Dear Israelis, Get over your phobias, and maybe you can still work things out. Sincerely, Prof Dov

Israel’s Demophobia by Dov Waxman | The Middle East Channel   It is time for Israelis to realize that not all Islamist groups are the same. While they are all deeply and maybe implacably opposed to Israel, they are not

Posted in Miscellany

The accelerating erosion of Western influence in the Middle East

The West’s Middle East Pillars of Sand by Daniel Korski and Ben Judah – Project Syndicate American and Soviet influence was not confined to the battlefield, as both countries made their presence felt high up the military chain of command.

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Hearts and Minds 2010

I happened to catch HBO’s The Battle for Marjah last night.  Here’s the trailer, but be warned that it’s misleading. What’s misleading is that there’s not a lot of “action” in this documentary at all.  That very lack of action,

Posted in Movies, TV Tagged with:

Don’t buy the Shi’a Threat excuse in Bahrain and beyond

The Siege of Bahrain | The Middle East Channel   Unconfirmed rumors swirled throughout the day on the 17th that Saudi riot police had taken part in the early morning attack. It is hard to determine the veracity of these

Posted in Miscellany

Joschka Fischer: Of course Tenet knew that Curveball was unreliable

Curveball doubts were shared with CIA, says ex-German foreign minister | World news |   Reprinting an extract from his autobiography, Tenet claimed he only found out in 2005, two years after the Iraq invasion, that the BND had

Posted in Miscellany