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Willisms

« The Sixth Mainstream Melee. | WILLisms.com | Pundit Roundtable »

The Seventh Mainstream Melee -- You Mean The Initial Reports Were Incorrect?

mainstreammelee.gif

It's a non-blog adventure.

I.

Chicago Tribune: "Plame's identity, if truly a secret, was thinly veiled"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

So, Valerie Plame wasn't covert? Her identity might have been not only common knowledge inside the beltway, but public knowledge to anyone with internet access? Oh, okay.

Super Succinct Snippet-

The question of whether Valerie Plame's employment by the Central Intelligence Agency was a secret is the key issue in the two-year investigation to determine if someone broke the law by leaking her CIA affiliation to the news media.

Federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald contends that Plame's friends "had no idea she had another life." But Plame's secret life could be easily penetrated with the right computer sleuthing and an understanding of how the CIA's covert employees work.

The CIA needs to revamp its methods to keep up with the information age. This is ridiculous.

---------------------------

II.

The Washington Post: "Army Guard Refilling Its Ranks"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

So, there won't be a draft? Iraq veterans aren't just like the Kerry-esque Vietnam veterans of 3+ decades ago?

Super Succinct Snippet-

The Army Guard said Friday that it signed up more than 26,000 soldiers in the first five months of fiscal 2006, exceeding its target by 7 percent in its best performance in 13 years. At this pace, Guard leaders say they are confident they will reach their goal of boosting manpower from the current 336,000 to the congressionally authorized level of 350,000 by the end of the year.

Without the Kerry campaign and the media establishment constantly running down National Guard service, creating a self-fulfilling left-wing prophesy, and with Iraq veterans returning and telling their friends, neighbors, colleagues, and families about what is actually happening in Iraq, the Guard no longer has to overcome such mighty recruitment hurdles.

---------------------------

III.

Houston Chronicle: "Arrest of former Bush aide surprises friends, colleagues"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

You mean Claude Allen didn't abruptly resign to protest Katrina, or because he thought Bush was not conservative enough for him? Or because he was gay? Or because he became fed up with the GOP? You mean that any number of other anti-Bush theories out there on Allen's resignation were all just plain wrong?

Super Succinct Snippet-

The police accused Allen of going to stores on more than 25 occasions and buying items, taking them to his car and then returning to the store with his receipt.

He would then pick up duplicates of the items he had just bought and return them for a refund, the police said.

So he was basically just one of those messed-up-in-the-head wealthy housewife types who shoplifts lotion and greeting cards and other petty merchandise for the thrill of it. Not a scandal. Not anything. Just (if convicted) a weird dude with some mental instabilities.


---------------------------

IV.

Khaleej Times (UAE): "The ports deal paradox: Give the UAE a break!"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

You mean that cancelling the Dubai port deal might have negative consequences for America's image and American interests in the Middle East? Let's hear it from the source, from a Dubai-based investment banker.

Super Succinct Snippet-

Dubai is home to DP World and 160 nationalities, it is the Arabian Monaco, Geneva and Hong Kong (pre-97 to be sure), a symbol of laissez faire capitalism steeped in its historical affection for Britain and America, an emirate unlike any other on earth. Yet, it is the same Dubai and the UAE that is now being slammed by wolf packs of powerful Arab bashers and assorted Islamophobes all piously wrapped up in the Stars and Stripes, howling Armageddon in the American media and Congress....

If America torpedoes the DP World deal, it will be worse than a crime. It will be a blunder of historic dimensions. It will strip bare our illusion that an Arab, a Muslim, can ever be a friend of America again. That illusion is priceless but, ultimately, valuable to America, not the UAE.

Failing to see the big picture here truly was a blunder of historical proportions. This was not just some minor business deal, it was vital to American national security and progress in the Middle East.


---------------------------

V.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: "Jack Kelly: All bad news, all the time"

Super Succinct Synopsis-

You mean there may not be a civil war in Iraq? And U.S. military personel aren't deserting in droves?

Super Succinct Snippet-

The data show desertions have plunged since 9/11, and are much lower than during the Vietnam war.

The Army, Navy and Air Force reported 7,978 desertions in the 2001 fiscal year, but only 3,456 in 2005, Mr. Nichols noted. In 1971, the Army reported 33,094 desertions, 3.4 percent of its total force. In 2005, desertions represented just 0.24 percent of 1.4 million of active service members....

Exaggeration and misinformation are hallmarks of chaotic situations, and it is hard for journalists who do most of their reporting from the safety of their hotels to sort fact from fiction....

There is no civil war in Iraq, but al-Qaida would dearly love to provoke one. Knowledge of that fact should make journalists more careful about separating rumor from fact. But many apparently have chosen instead to act as the propaganda arm of our enemies.

It's interesting that nearly every attack by terrorists and insurgents in Iraq happens within a small radius of establishment media journalists. The rest of the country is relatively safe and secure.


---------------------------

The previous Mainstream Melee.

WILLisms.com and many other blogs sometimes focus too much on our fellow bloggers, while excluding well-done professional journalism from our posts.

The Mainstream Melee is a quick survey of five non-blog sources, coming atchya at completely random intervals. The stories are either underreported, particularly well-written, interesting, or otherwise important to the big picture. But generally there will be a theme of some kind in the choices.

Posted by Will Franklin · 12 March 2006 12:27 PM

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