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October 16, 2005

Sunday Fare..

Even the Sunnis voted in large numbers yesterday... even if, as the AP observes, to vote *against* something. Novel idea, that, eh? Not only can you vote (that's happened before in Iraq) but you can vote *against* something. Wonder how many Sunni's, walking away from the polls, had that little epiphany...

Strategy Page covers it better than most, perhaps.

October 16, 2005


IRAQ: Another Election Carried Out Despite Terrorist Threats

October 16, 2005: The government is getting better at running national elections under the threat of terrorist attacks. The legislative elections last January had fewer than ten million people voting (69 percent of those registered), and over 40 people killed by terrorists opposed to the elections. This vote, on the new constitution, brought out over ten million, and left fewer than ten dead. There are several reasons for this progress. First, the government is getting better. There are more police, and more of them are trained and reliable. The government has used its experience well, and the country was basically shut down for yesterday's election, making it difficult for terrorists to move around. And apparently the terrorists did not move much, and attacked even less. But another reason for that was the effort by many Sunni Arab anti-government groups to get Sunni Arabs to vote against the new constitution. If the three mainly Sunni Arab provinces could get two thirds of the
voters to go against the new constitution, the constitution would have to go back for more revisions and a new vote. Many Sunni Arabs decided that they could live with the new constitution, and turned out to vote that way. As a result, it appears that the Sunni Arabs did not stop the constitution.

All of this is another major defeat for the al Qaeda and anti-government forces. These two groups have not been able to stop any elections, and their efforts are weaker with each round of voting. Al Qaeda's efforts to goad the Shia Arabs into a civil war with Sunni Arabs has not worked either, although it has caused a lot of ill-will and violence in areas where Shia and Sunni live close together.

The anti-government forces have little to sustain them. The October 15 election was just another of many major defeats. And every day, there are numerous lesser defeats. But some of the Sunni Arab terrorists will keep at it, and it will be years before this threat is completely gone from Iraq. That's been the pattern in other Arab countries over the past few decades.

SGT Hook is back in the 'sphere. Welcome home, Sergeant Major!

Michael Barone has an interesting take on things political.

On this day a bunch of WWII German leaders reaped what they sowed, discovering that last step was a long one. On this day in 1946 the condemned Nazi war criminals were hanged. Except for Goering, who cheated Sergeant John Woods with a pill. Perhaps not unfittingly, it was the 6th anniversary of the founding of the Warsaw Ghetto. There are those on the web with a dissenting view of the event.

NOTE: The "dissenting view" link isn't an endorsement by anyone here. And unless you think the Nazis were a good idea, and that the Jews are the root of all evil - you aren't going to like the link, nor the ideas expressed therein. Something I should have noted before this. My apologies to anyone who felt ambushed by that link. The 'Net is neutral - the use we put it to, however, is not.

Actually, not a good day for European leaders... Marie Antoinette got to look through the little window on this day in 1793.

It really is a busy day in history. Some other tidbits...

1710 British troops capture Port Royal, Nova Scotia. The utter ingratitude of the locals to this involuntary change of administration will result in them being resettled in Louisiana... and the Acadians become Cajuns.
1775 Portland, Maine, burned by British - you b*st*rds! Mind you, it seems that Portland has been rather flammable over it's history...
1813 Battle at Leipzig: Napoleon loses to Prussia, Austria, and Russia in "The Battle of Nations." The start of a long, and still bloody denouement.
1859 John Brown captures the arsenal at Harper's Ferry, Va
1863 U.S. Grant is named commander of Union forces in the West. First Vicksburg, finally, Petersburg.
1885 Capt Alfred Thayer Mahan becomes Superintendent of the Naval War College
1925 Locarno Pact, European nations agree to accept boundaries as they are
1940 First black American promoted to general: Benjamin Oliver Davis, Sr.
1953 Batista regime sentences Fidel Castro sentenced to 15 years for
rebellion. Oops. Shoulda held on to him longer. eh Fulgencio? Not that you were any great winner yourself.
1962 Missile Crisis: JFK learns of Soviet missiles in Cuba. Even *I* remember this, and I was pretty young. But Dad left with a lot of other soldiers to head to Florida...
1964 China becomes world's fifth nuclear power. Dangit. That sure changed the calculus for Vietnam...
1978 Polish Resistance worker Karol Wojtyla elected pope as John Paul II.

Ry sends along this bit from Defense Tech about making the old new again.

I counter with this:

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Staff Sgt. Matthew Sheppard of A Co, 1st Battalion, 325th AIR, prepares to move out on an improvised donkey convoy near Lwar Kowndalan, Afghanistan, Oct. 3. Sheppard and other paratroopers used donkeys to transport air-dropped supplies off a mountain and back to their patrol base in town.

Love the reins. Pink is your color, Sergeant.

For our Georgia Denizens and visitors, Banter in Atlanter wants to push this: Heat for Heroes.

At Stop The ACLU, Sunday Funnies!

Gulf Coast resident, reader and blogger Seawitch asks that we go read this piece over at Miss M's place and offer what help we are motivated to provide.

More as the Muse seizes me.

I was seized.

SWWBO wants you to know she understands Kosher. And religious sensitivity. She asks that rather than shower her with religious tracts, (she'll return fire with Catholic stuff), why don't you understand free speech and politics. And that, as the Founder of Carnival of the Recipes, she can have "special themes" like Pork Only, or "No Companion Animal Recipes" as a rule. Trust me - if she ever has a "Piscine-Only Carnival," I won't be visiting. Some people's nerves are too close to the surface! Ya don't like this week's theme... ever, don't participate this week. See how easy that is? Amazing that people take a somewhat 'rights-based' view of a volunteer effort on the web...

So - don't gripe at ALa, who is hosting this week's Carnival of the Recipes, PorkOnlyEdition!!!

SWWBO also introduces you to The Empress of Dark, true ruler of Castle Argghhh!

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Heh: Hat tip to Eric, the Straight White Guy:





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