Thursday, March 16, 2006

This idea of forming a government is coming across loud and clear in spades today

A correction to my previous post on Operation Swarmer: the aircraft involved were not dropping bombs or firing missiles, they were merely helicopters transporting troops. What’s interesting is that the Pentagon early in the day was doing everything shy of playing “Ride of the Valkyries” to mislead everyone into believing there had been air strikes, and that the whole thing was bigger than it was. Why? And in the Gaggle, Little Scottie made it clear that Bush had not only not given permission for Op Swarmer, but hadn’t been informed of it in advance (“No, this was not something that he needed to authorize.”).

Bush has named the governor of Idaho, one Dirk Kempthorne, as secretary of interior. All of our national parks will now be planted with potatoes, and the Grand Canyon filled with cooking oil, the better to make delicious Freedom Fries.

Consecutive story headlines on the Pentagon website: “Iraqi, Coalition Forces Launch Air Assault” and “Operation Aims to Curb Violence in Iraq.” Isn’t an air assault a little bit, you know, violent? The second “operation” is called Operation Scales of Justice, and is actually intended to provide security for the parliament, which formally met for the first time since it was elected more than 3 months ago, and which then went away after half an hour without having done anything, and then adjourned with no date scheduled for a resumption. Sez Gen. Rick Lynch: “This idea of forming a representative government is coming across loud and clear in spades today”.

After a refrigerator failure, a Frenchman had to cremate the bodies of his parents, who died in 1984 and 2002. His father had recouped the costs by showing off his late wife to paying tourists.

Condi is in Australia. She evidently tried to get Australia to supply uranium to India, but they said no, as long as India did not sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. She went to visit American sailors on the USS Port Royal, where she wore the traditional baseball cap and pearls. What I like most about this Reuters pic is the caption, whose author seemed to think Rice would be hard to pick out of this crowd and so added the words “black cap” in parentheses after her name. At the end of her remarks, she said, “Thank you for welcoming me here and I look forward to saying hello to some of you.”

“Hello, sailor.”

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