Morning Report: March 28, 2008

Stupidity from the usual suspects at NYT and TSA; Muslim groups begin to get a clue on Darfur; updates on the Tibet protests; and a voice from Iraq.

Your tax dollars at work. TSA officials thought a nipple ring was a threat to security, according to a complaint by Mindi Hamlin of Texas. MSNBC: 'A Texas woman who said she was forced to remove a nipple ring with pliers in order to board an airplane called Thursday for an apology by federal security agents and a civil rights investigation. ... Hamlin, 37, said she was trying to board a flight from Lubbock to Dallas on Feb. 24 when she was scanned by a Transportation Security Administration agent after passing through a larger metal detector without problems.' According to Hamlin, the female TSA agent who scanned her declined Hamlin's offer to have the female agent examine her pierced breasts in private, and instead called over a male colleague with a pair of pliers. Unbelievable. Hamlin and her lawyer, Gloria Allred, are considering legal action. Read the full story at the link.

Strategy Page: Muslim groups starting to pressure Arab League on Darfur. Strategy Page: 'March 28, 2008: The Arab League is under increasing pressure from Moslem organizations, to pressure Sudan to stop the atrocities in Darfur. The Arab League has defended Sudan to the world, accusing critics of being anti-Moslem. But many Moslems know better, and are appalled at the suffering of the Moslem victims of Sudan's ethnic cleansing program in Sudan.'

Tibet protest detentions estimated at 2,000. International Campaign for Tibet: 'Tibetan protests have continued and spread even in the presence of substantial security forces. As of March 27, the number of counties in which protests have occurred has increased to at least 42. Official Chinese reports have acknowledged more than 1,000 detentions of persons who surrendered to authorities for rioting. In addition, unofficial reports estimate that authorities have detained at least another 1,200 Tibetan protestors.' Full details at the link.

"According to this theory, Iran is supporting Moqtada al-Sadr in order to rein him in." The Belmont Club examines how CNN's Michael Ware attempts to "patch up a theory that is rapidly falling to pieces."
According to this theory, Iran is supporting Moqtada al-Sadr in order to rein him in. If the US would only leave Iran alone then all would be well. But unfortunately Americans are too stupid to understand that people who are firing EFPs, mortars and rockets are you are not your enemy. By acting against Sadr, America has created the real enemy. ...

But if Iran were determined to advance peace by restraining Sadr why would "the most daring attacks on U.S. forces in the country" be "committed by Iranian-backed breakaway elements of Muqtada's militia faction"? If these are two dogs with the same master how can the master be benign in the one case and malign on the other? Inquiring minds want to know.

Commentary. Kathleen Parker writes of her correspondence with Iraqi journalist Mayada al-Askari, who was the subject of Jean Sasson's book Mayada, Daughter of Iraq.
In the course of the war, Mayada sometimes insisted that the U.S. had to leave for the violence to stop. Like many Americans, she was enraged that no plan was in place for the day after:

“All the resistance, insurgents, party militias and other forces that came through . . . all this would not have taken place if the coalition forces had a clear plan for the day after. . . . Your soldiers need to return home, as more fighting and killing will not solve anything.”

At other times, she insisted that a U.S. withdrawal would plunge Iraq into a ceaseless civil war and genocide.

In June 2006, she wrote: “Tell him (Bush) we are ever thankful for his ousting the dictator, but to forget democracy and announce martial laws, and put an end to the blood bath and misery.”

By April 2007, Mayada was critical of the Democrats and their promises to bring the troops home. Should that happen, she wrote, America “will leave Iraq in its current devastated state, and who knows what will happen in the area, and everything inside this red-hot region.” ...

oday she insists that Iraqis who are not Baathist hope that McCain wins the election for one simple reason: “The man knows the job that has to be done in Iraq. If the U.S. pulls out of Iraq now or anytime soon, then that will mean one thing: al-Qaeda won the war.”

Go to the link to read the whole article. In light of my comments the other day, these words from the article jumped out at me:
Says Mayada: “When you ask the young people of Iraq — what are you, a Sunni or a Shiite? — the ready answer is: I am an Iraqi.”