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December 20, 2003

Khaddafi and "Quiet Diplomacy"

Brian Whitaker, writing in the Guardian, acknowledges that the toppling of Saddam Hussein *may* have influenced the months-long efforts to reach the recent agreements with Libya regarding WMDs.

The success of the efforts in Libya is a particular triumph for Tony Blair, but it also raises many questions about the course of action adopted in Iraq, and whether the methods that have worked with Tripoli might not have also succeeded eventually in Baghdad.

It's really hard to let go of a cherished idea, isn't it? Let us leave aside for a moment the fact that the imperatives between Iraq and Libya are different - Libya had already been smacked into a corner, and wasn't engaging in routine, wholesale slaughter of it's citizens, just the occasional retail killing. Libya was in many respects behaving itself already. Mr. Whitaker wants to suggest that the same approach might have worked with Iraq.

It seems obvious to suggest that the military pressures that were applied to Iraq in the run-up to the war may have helped to focus the minds in Colonel Gadafy's tent, but this cannot be the whole explanation.

I can see Mr. Whitaker writing in mid-1944, after the Russians have started to penetrate into Poland and the Allied Expeditionary Force is poised to land in Normandy arguing that we shouldn't continue the attacks into Germany, because after all, weren't the Germans retreating and starting to cooperate?

Leave aside that we still have the Vernichtungslagern, Konzentrationslagern, Aufhaltslagern, Krankenlagern, and Zwangsarbeitslagerrn with names like Auschwitz-Birkenau, Buchenwald, Bergen-Belsen, Theresienstadt, Dachau, Belzec, and Majdanek to name just a few in operation?

"Well, you see," Mr. Whitaker would patiently explain, "Hitler has already shut down Treblinka, Sobibor, and Chelmno and promises to shut down the others, although he *is* being a bit sticky about letting in those pesky inspectors."

There you have it. Right? Makes sense, right? Riiiiight.

Mr. Whitaker goes on in the rest of the article to explain the incentives offered Libya and Libya's response to those incentives. The key piece (to this writer at least) is Libya's response. Substantive. Allowing inspectors in, with very few restrictions, openness about it's programs.

At the end of the article, Whitaker quotes David Mepham, associate director of the Institute for Public Policy Research think-tank.

"Tackling the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction requires a stronger commitment to multinational arms control in the Middle East and elsewhere."
The Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesman, Menzies Campbell, said: "This is a success for diplomacy. It is one gained through multilateral negotiation and doesn't depend on the use of force of arms."

Again, I come back with, "Riiiiggghhhht." Slobodan Milosevic on trial in The Hague, Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar on the run who knows where, and Saddam Hussein in custody, and new governments in place in all three referenced nations had absolutely nothing to do with COL Khaddafi's decisions to change his policies. In a world where the only change in approach has been that someone in the West finally lost patience with the bullshit and backed up the threats with action, the action in fact really had no effect.

Only in the Cloud-Cuckoo-Land of the Guardian.

The whole article is available here.

December 19, 2003

Gratuitious Gun Pic just for kicks.

Take a look at the PIAT, Projector, Infantry, Anti-Tank...

More detail on this to follow this weekend.

by John on Dec 19, 2003 | Artillery

Building on the Septic Tank Story...

We've discovered Saddam's Escape and Evasion Manual that he used to prepare his hidey hole.

December 18, 2003

Bruce Willis' 1 Mil bounty for Saddam

Bruce Willis pledged 1 Million Dollars to the soldier who captured Saddam.

I understand (though I can find no link) that he's waiting to write the check - but recognizes there's some difficulty since it was a 600 soldier operation, NOT counting the supporters like all those intel guys, etc.

I have some suggestions for Bruce as to what he could do with the money.

1. Donate it to the Armed Forces Morale, Welfare and Recreation Funds with the caveat that it be spent in Iraq and Afghanistan.

2. Donate it to the various service relief societies:

Army Emergency Relief

Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society

Air Force Aid Society

Coast Guard Mutual Assistance

Armed Forces Relief Trust

Just some thoughts, Bruce. For the rest of ya, too!

by John on Dec 18, 2003 | Global War on Terror (GWOT)
» Blackfive - The Paratrooper of Love links with: Friday Foray

A little comment on Howard Dean's reaction to the capture of Saddam.

I've not addressed this directly, and the moment is passing (at least until the sound-bite ads start appearing) to do so. But I came across this (forwarded from WorldNet Daily) that sums it up with such nicely tuned invective, that I'll share it here, and just say "What they said!" This refers to Dean's statement that the capture of Saddam does not make America any safer:

...I think Dean may have jumped the shark with this one. And I deeply regret it. No single person better embodies the spirit of the delusional and crank-infected left in this country than Howard Dean. He is the voice of Streisand and all political comics; he is Al Franken with better clothes; he is Congressman McDermott and Sen. Leahy; he is the crowd in front of the A.N.S.W.E.R. rally; and he genuinely represents about 25 percent of the American electorate which is a majority in the Democratic Party.

But not even that 25 percent is that crazy when it comes to Saddam. Howard added megalomania to the witches brew of crazy left thinking, and came down on the side of Saddam's capture not mattering because if Saddam's capture did matter, then Howard's theory of the world would have been flawed.

Howard of the Hague cannot conceive of his view of the world being flawed, so he worked backward to the conclusion that grabbing Saddam doesn't make the United States safer. That is simply and conclusively nuts, and you know it, I know it and most of Dean's people know it.

But Dean doesn't know it. He worked hard on this speech. It is reported that he extensively rewrote it after Sunday's big news. So give him the credit of his own, thought-through conclusions.

Dean isn't fit to be president of the United States because he lacks even a high-school level competency of threat assessment. Period...

To read the whole thing, go to the WorldNet Daily article. I should admit I used to read WND, but I got tired of the news nuggets (good) interspersed with the conspiracy theorys or really (I think, based on info available to me) bad analysis.

Not a good habit, actually. I have a low threshold for that kind of stuff, and the editorial spinning of the news, so I tend to selectively harvest my news from the web (which is not good - you can miss a lot that way unless you are prepared to spend a LOT of time at it) but I'm so emotionally immature that I just couldn't afford to keep replacing the televisions after I put my foot through the screen.

December 17, 2003

After Saddam Gets out of prison...

Since Kofi and Co have decided he can't face the death penalty and probably will only have his license suspended...

Here's Saddam's future. At least until the Mossad finds him.

December 15, 2003

New Gun P0rn™!

Finally got over my funk about messing around with the camera and shootin' irons. I've got several projects in the works, but I've been neglecting my primary customer base. So here's some new Gun P0rn™!

Today for your viewing pleasure... a rifle with some history. My battlefield capture Japanese Type 99 rifle.

Here's something to tide you over while I work on the rest of the post! Yeah, that's my M2 Carl Gustaf holding up the blanket back there. I was doing some work on Carl and was too lazy to move him out of the way...

This particular rifle was brought back from the Battle For Conical Hill by Corporal Frank Huggins of the 383rd Infantry Regiment, 96th Infantry Division. I obtained it, sadly, after his passing, from his widow in Lawton, OK, so I am unable to provide any more detail than that. I wish I had the chance to talk to CPL Huggins!

The rifle came complete, in ways that you usually don't see in Japanese rifles.

Flash Traffic (extended entry) Follows... »

by John on Dec 15, 2003 | Rifles

Eyewitness account of the raid that got Saddam

From: Steve Hite@noneofyourbusiness.saddamistoast Subject: We got Saddam Hussein! Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2003 16:53:20 +0300

As you all know by now, we have captured Saddam Hussein. The 1st
Brigade Combat Team "Raiders", 4th Infantry Division (M)with Special
Ops forces caught HVT#1. [High Value Target. ed.]

I participated in this raid last night which started at about 1900
(7PM) as we quickly rehearsed the plan. This was a joint operation
between 1st Brigade, 4ID and Special Ops Forces. After we rehearsed
the plan at a grain storage facility in Tikrit (that smelled like an
outhouse by the way!), we mounted up and drove about 20km south to Ad
Dawr. We had Humvees and a some armored Bradley Infantry Fighting
Vehicles and the Special Ops guys brought their toys. I won't go into
what they ride around in, but they have got some nice vehicles and
equipment! One vehicle you'd never expect to see over here! Totally
out of place but totally fits the Special Ops "look".

We drove at about 40-50 MPH in total darkness on the highway
across the Tigris River and headed south to the small town of Ad Dawr. We used our Night Vision Goggles as we sped down the road as some of the locals watched this convoy of about 30 vehicles speed by in the moonless night. Wonder what they were thinking? Last night was pitch black with no moon until about 2130hrs (9:30PM).

After we hit the objectives (Wolverine 1 & 2) we set a cordon and
began the search. Initially we didn't find him and the Special Ops soldiers in the house were being led away from his #1's "rat hole" by an Iraqi that was in the house.

Well, the "rat hole" was discovered and the cover moved and sure enough, there he was down in the bottom! Our Special Ops guys whisked him away in a "Little Bird" (small Special Ops Helicopter)off to Tikrit for a quick stop and then off to Baghdad.

We drove all the way back up to Tikrit in disbelief that we had finally found this guy! All the work and intelligence gathering we have done for the past 8 months have paid off! It has been quite amazing watching us narrow the ring around this guy. We have got an amazing "wiring diagram" with Saddam Hussein in the middle working outwards starting with his children, wives, cousins, uncles, nephews, body guards, drivers, etc. Amazing! We just followed up on all the clues we have gathered and here we are. The last two weeks we have really been "cleaning house" on Saddam Husseins most trusted aides. We have had a great working relationship with our Special Ops brothers. We have shared information and worked together for so long on this that it's great to be able to say that "I was part of the unit that caught
Saddam Hussein!"

I have a great photo of him in the house that I'll try to send, but it's a very big file. Over 2 MB! I'll try to send it in another email as an attachment!

Major Steve Hite
Brigade Fire Support Officer
1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized) RAIDERS!

All I got to say is Hoo-ahh!

Note to the Canadian Artists Collective...

I just bought my last piece of music by any of your members. Hint - turning the government into your revenue collector is not a good idea (mind you, I'm not a fan of corporate welfare on this side of the border, either).

If something like this were to be implemented in the US, I would have bought my last bit of music. Or DVD.

Note to artists - adapt to the market and the technology that enables it. Don't just ask the government to hold a gun to citizen's heads. At least the Canadian government didn't allow the Artists Kolkhoz to slap the tax on flash memory cards and hard drives, etc. But they may well try again.


Makes me want to send the cossacks sweeping in, sabers drawn! But I'll settle for dancing.


I realize that pirating costs you guys money. But this isn't going to help as much as you think. You may well find yourselves victims of the Saskatchewan River Pirates!

Canadian blogger David Adkin's article on the subject is here.

For a look at what was proposed (and the Kolkhoz may yet go after) check here.

Meanwhile, over at Chaos Central...

The Chaos Overlord has been chewing the scenery.

He's going to need to call in a cleaning team, if only to clean up all the frothing spittle as the CO vents about liberals and Saddam!

Just start at one end and move to the other. They're all fun.

December 14, 2003

The Animatrix to the Imperial Armorer...

Defines the most nervous man in the world*...


All Hail Pam!

*If he isn't already room temperature in some cave somewhere... we can only hope the rats are feasting on his liquescent carcass.

More about the DHL Attack.

Again, from CAPT H, more on the DHL Airbus SAM Attack. My admiration for the crew increases...

by John on Dec 14, 2003 | Global War on Terror (GWOT)
» Backcountry Conservative links with: More Details on Cargo Plane Attack

Coming soon to a corner near you!

Howard Dean's new endorsement!

From a blogger in Iraq...

The Mesopotamian:

The Ululation of Gunfire again; you should all be here now. What fireworks! You should be here. The Baghdadis are expressing what they really think again. Can you hide this now CNN & others?...Just now the Miserables are beginning to bomb the streets, out of hatred and desperation. They will attack the people. I tell you, there should be no complacency. Unleash the people against them and NOW. ...Before this, I prayed the traditional prayers of thanksgiving. That I, and the Iraqi people should see this day! This, surely, is the mother of all days for us. The heroes of our valiant Pesh Mergas, and the heroes of the U.S. Fourth division have done it. Now is the time to unleash the Iraqi Counter Terror; now is the time to go for the kill. Let us go after them. Don’t lose this moment. They want to recant and live in equality with the people? they have a chance - otherwise they will have to go. I am too overwhelmed with emotion to write coherently; please excuse me. The foul mouths of the enemies of our people everywhere and the neighboring vultures and hyenas be stuffed with dirt; we will come after you; your time will come.

Long live the great alliance of Mesopotamia and the United States of America and her allies. Now is the time, now is the time; Do not delay; unleash the Counter Terror.

God Bless Iraq; God Bless America; God bless the Allies.

You're welcome. Glad to have been of service (speaking for all of us, not just me, people... yes, I CAN be that arrogant!)

Now, can we talk about this shooting guns into the air thing? How about some nice fireworks...? There's this little problem called, "Gravity". I just guessing here, but I'm betting Allah doesn't reach out and catch all the little bits of copper-jacketed lead...

Baldilocks is short and to the point.

The Mother of All Mugshots. Not her line, but that's where I saw it!

Over at Boots and Sabers...

They have two great posts (well more than that, but two worth linking to!)

First there is this commentary on Saddam and his current status in the Baath hierarchy...

And this one that hopefully shows that Saddam was just practicing.

Good job Owen!

Meanwhile, over at Patriot Paradox...

Nick caught something I missed at Day By Day. (Sorry Chris, I'm usually a better reader than that!) Of course today the Media Monkey's have to talk about it. And watch it spin to the left... are those guys in the right hemisphere?

BTW - when did the left shift from the Enemy of Fascism to it's fellow traveler? I missed the memo.

Today in History.

Today in Military History:

1716 Philip Livingston, Signer
1830 Allen Thomas, Brig Gen, C.S.A., d. 1907
1832 Daniel Harris Reynolds, Brig Gen, C.S.A., d. 1902
1837 William Wells, Brig Gen, U.S., d. 1892
1895 King George VI of Great Britain (1936-52), who fought at Jutland
1896 Gen. James H Doolittle, who bombed Tokyo, d. 1992
1901 King Paul I of Greece

1136 King Harald IV of Norway, murdered
1417 John Oldcastle, Lord Cobham, English nobleman, hanged
1754 Sultan Mehemet I of Turkey
1788 Carlo III of Naples (1735-1759)/Carlos III of Spain (1759-1788)
1799 George Washington, at 66
1861 Albert, the Prince Consort, at 42
1945 Josef Kramer, the "Beast of Belsen" and 10 other Nazi war
1947 Stanley Baldwin, English premier, appeaser

1763 Pennsylvania vigilantes massacre Conestoga Indians near Lancaster
1814 Battle of Lake Borgne, La: British overwhelm U.S. gunboats .
1825 Nicholas I becomes Tsar, Decemberist uprising breaks out and fails
1863 Battle of Bean's Station, Tn: Confederates repulse Union troops
1913 Greece formally takes possession of Crete
1924 Chang Kai Shek occupies Hankow
1937 Japanese troops begin "Rape of Nanking"
1939 Soviet Union "defends" itself by attacking Finland
1941 Japanese begin repairing north Luzon airfields for their own use.
1941 Japanese forces in Malaya occupy Gurun & Kroh
1941 Surviving B-17s in the Philippines are ordered to Australia.
1942 Australian reinforcements land at Oro Bay, near Buna.
1942 Japanese destroyers land 800 troops at the Mambare River, near
1943 Chinese New 38th Div involved in heavy fighting around Bhamo.
1943 Soviets launch a winter offensive against the Germans
1943 Sub Grayback sinks Japanese DD Numakaze c. 50 miles east of
1944 Third Fleet begins carrier attacks on Japanese positions on Luzon
2003 Saddam Hussein, The Butcher of Baghdad, captured by the 4th Mech

Hat tip to Strategy Page

Kerry's take on Saddam upset Kathryn Lopez at NRO that she used the "F" word in the Corner!

Now that's a pissed off K-Lo!

BTW - here's a link to the video of the rat's hole and his capture.

I don't speak arabic, but I think they are happy in that room.

As for the Beeb's talking head's concern that this footage humiliates Saddam -

I'm am American expat living in London, and I was listening to BBC London (Radio 5) shortly after the announcement of Saddam's capture. The host of a call-in show was going on about how the Americans unnecessarily subjected Saddam to humiliation by showing the video of him being given a medical exam and being unwashed and unshaven. She termed it "serial humiliation", and asked "what's next, beheading him and parading his head on a pole around Baghdad"? It's absolutely amazing how so many here dredge up hatred for the U.S. no matter what. (via The Corner)

No matter what. All I can say is, anyone who allowed people to be slowly fed feet first into an industrial shredder CAN'T be humiliated.

She Who Will Be Obeyed chimes in with, "In honor of the capture of Saddam, we're having bacon for breakfast! and ham for dinner!" Cosmo, yer invited! Bring Jonah and the rest of the family, too, what the heck!

by John on Dec 14, 2003 | Global War on Terror (GWOT)
» Backcountry Conservative links with: End of the Road for Saddam

Ding Dong, The Witch is Dead Captured!

The 4th Mech (NOT the AIR FORCE!) Captures Saddam!

(courtesy the Armorial Animatrix)

And the saddest part of this all, aside from the cost to the Iraqi people, is that the first thought of the Dwarfs was: "Oh shit, how the hell can we spin this?"

Before we know it - Al Gore will have done this, using a plan put forth by Weasel Clark, using Dean as a diversion, with Kucinich's campaign manager undercover in Tikrit under the guise of negotiating our surrender.

Or at least that whatever they would have done, it would have been done quicker'n this.

Or, perhaps, that President Bush "stole" Saddam from them. If he hadn't been President they would have gotten Saddam. Yeah, that's it.

Oh f*ck the Democrats - WAY TO GO ALL Y'ALL OVER THERE!

No slam at the efforts and sacrifices of the Air Force intended - just a whack at the Air Power Theorists who didn't completely understand the concept of Center of Gravity. It took us ALL to do this.

Now I wonder when the Barking Moonbats at the Democratic Underground will come out? Oh, they have. Here, too. And, I'm sure, all we captured was a 'look-alike".

This being a time of joy and celebration, we Dance at Castle Argghhh!

by John on Dec 14, 2003 | Global War on Terror (GWOT)
» Backcountry Conservative links with: End of the Road for Saddam
» The Truth Laid Bear links with: Saddam Captured Alive: Weblog Reactions