Thursday, June 29, 2006

Guantanimo Swag

I really don't know what to say about this, exept I'm afraid it's not a joke....

The good life at Gitmo: Part I

Luxurous 'Camp 4'
Since the US Supreme Court's recent ruling on Guantanimo Bay may finally signal the flaming bag of human rights poop on the White House door step, I though I'd take a quick virtual government authorized tour of the grounds. Here I offer the opening scene, which seems so thoroughly relaxing I thought we might extend our visit over a few posts.

Hmmm, I wonder if they're selling time shares?

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

A history of terrorism.... .mil style

So the Army has this flashy page about the 'timeline of terrorism'. I'm glad I took a look, since a lot of what I thought I knew about terrorism is wrong (good thing I figured that out before I started writing my dissertation on the subject!). Here are some things that might be news to you too:

*Apparently, terrorism began with the hijacking of a plane in 1961. And here I was thinking that it went as far back as the French Revolution. Silly me.

*There were only four terrorists actions between 1960-1969, 10 in the '70s and increasing numbers after that. Again, glad I looked at that web site since I thought that, gee let me think of an example...say all the thousands of desaparecidos in Argentina or the torture and killing in Chile under Pinochet were terrorism, was I ever wrong or what!

*I thought that the explosions targeting the American Military in Iraq were acts of War, but apparently they're acts of terrorism. This is an important one, since it also helps clear up the status of the current residents of GITMO; if attacking a foreign army engaged in combat against you isn't war, then of course your not a prisoner of war if you get caught doing it, duh!

Anyway, hope this has been as informative for you as it was for me.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Soldiers charged with murder

Reuters is reporting that three US soldiers are being charged with murder for killing three men last month who were among 200 detainees being held near Tikrit. The release notes that the accused also threatened to kill a fellow soldier if he informed anyone and quotes a US military release as saying that the men killed were "of apparent Middle Eastern descent" and that their "names are unknown"...

Connie and Maury: Infotainment gone (even more) horribly, horribly wrong

Picture this: Two reputable journalists, married to each other, get their own weekly news program. In addition to stories about war and politics, they team up to produce a cheesy nightclub style rendition of "Thanks for the Memories", complete with piano playing and piano sitting, spot lighting and soft focus, and new 'humorous' lyrics clearly written by some underpaid intern. A Woody Allen movie, you say? Maybe a new Tom Robbins novel? 'Fraid not. It's Connie Chung and Maury Povich on MSNBC. I warn you, the images are disturbing, but you can take some solace in the fact that the show has already been cancelled.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Measurment for Dummies Brings Success to DOD

A couple of weeks ago I posted one of my personal favorite charts from the DOD reports on progress in Iraq. Well it appears that things have been going 'well' on the media outlet front in Iraq on two counts:

* The DOD have apparently had time to get past Chapter 1 in their "Measurement For Dummies" book and have included a time index in their most recent chart.
* Those pesky 'independent' media outlets have finally gotten the message that, in a real democracy, the people should get their information from the commercial media. Lets not be too hard on them though, since in the "pre-war" period there was no such thing as a media outlet.

May 2006

I guess its true what they say: "The post-dictatorial apple doesn't fall far from the neo-fascist tree."

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Toby Keith Rocks Djibouti

Clearly there is some kind of crooner concoction being cooked up by the DOD. First the Marine singalong and now a whole page on the their site devoted to the relationship between country music and war. The recipe: Mix home grown white guy and acoustic guitar, half bake in Iraqi dessert. The result? I'm not quite sure, lets call it Death By PsyOps-let. The headline 'Toby Keith Rocks Djibouti' is just icing on the cake.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

A whole new reason war is scary....

Here's a link to a BBC story about an apparent US Marine variety show perfomance of a song making light of killing Iraqi civilians. There's also some footage with close captioned lyrics on YouTube.I know that creativity is a good outlet for anger, but this would push the limits of even the most dedicated art therapist. Ironicaly, the song sounds a bit like the Guns n Roses tune "Patience". I think "Six Feet Under" might have been a more appropriate choice.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Metrics of Success

I've been doing some work with the DOD's quarterly reports Measuring Stability and Security in Iraq (a series of documents intended to identify a 'metrics of success' for gauging the military's progress in Iraq. I thought I'd share one of my favorite pieces of 'evidence' of 'progress' in Iraq. I'm not sure they should be counting this one as a sign of stability though; did they learn nothing from the Filipin@ People Power II revolution? Helooooo, text messaging: the medium of the (almost) everyman's revolution. Pwr 2 PPl! democraC 4ever! dn W/USA!

fighting wor(l)ds.
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