Thursday, August 12, 2004

Friendly militias

Wolfowitz wants to build a "global anti-terrorist network of friendly militias," bypassing insufficiently pliable national militaries in favor of building up warlords and death squads and you’ve got to be fucking kidding. He said this to the House Armed Services Committee, but of the 15 stories on this subject turned up in a news.google search ("friendly militias" or "wolfowitz +militias"), none are from an American source.

Voter registration in Afghanistan, like this year’s opium crop, has surpassed expectations. And by surpassed expectations, I mean they faked so many of them, after such a poor initial showing, that no one can keep a straight face. Except for Secretary of War Rummy Rumsfeld, visiting Afghanistan yesterday, who said "Given the campaign of intimidation and attempts to dissuade people from registering, the surge in registration has to be a very vivid demonstration that the Afghan people are determined to make democracy work." Oh yeah, it just "has to be." Couldn’t be anything else.

The WaPo’s Washington Briefing section finds that since the start of 2003, Bush has only mentioned bin Laden 10 times in public appearances, 6 of those in response to questions. The last time he spoke about him at any length was in March 2003, when he downplayed his importance--"Terror is bigger than one person." Unlike, presumably, the war on terrorism, which his campaign tells us every day is personified by one, oddly chimp-like, person.

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