Patterico's Pontifications


More Kerry Lies

Filed under: 2004 Election — Patterico @ 10:06 pm

Captain Ed has the latest on Kerry’s apparent lies about spending Christmas in Cambodia. Start here and scroll backwards.

UPDATE: Reading the last three posts, I can see where readers might think: to hell with this blog. I’m going to Captain Ed’s!

But where was Captain Ed when the toe-licking story came around? Answer me that!

UPDATE x2: Instapundit has more. But doesn’t he always? Apparently Kerry’s folks are now admitting that he was wrong to say he was in Cambodia. But the more you learn, the more it looks like a deliberate fabrication rather than an innocent mistake.

More Media Bias

Filed under: Media Bias — Patterico @ 11:49 am

It’s well known that the media suddenly remembers the plight of the homeless the very second a Republican president takes office. Now Captain Ed discusses a similar trick: hand-wringing by the AP over the displacement of the homeless by security procedures for the Republican convention — even though no similar story ran when similar security procedures were employed for the Democratic convention.


Swift Boat Vets Respond to Kerry

Filed under: 2004 Election — Patterico @ 10:28 am

Captain Ed has the full response.

Note that the vets question the legitimacy of more than just one of Kerry’s Purple Hearts.

I still have a hard time understanding why so many people who served on nearby boats think Kerry is a cowardly liar, while [most of] the people on his own boat seem to disagree. Still, the allegations are difficult to simply ignore, though Democrats will no doubt try to do exactly that.

UPDATE: A commenter reminds me that one of the people from Kerry’s boat is a member of the Swift Boat Vets. I have edited the post with a bracketed phrase to make it more accurate. Still, the overwhelming majority of people on his boat stand with him (or at least don’t criticize him). I wonder why.

UPDATE x2: Another commenter clears up the mystery of why the men on Kerry’s boat might support him when other men serving with Kerry don’t.

Stunning News

Filed under: Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 9:47 am

Looks like, alone of all the major papers, the L.A. Times got something right recently. Kudos.

Toe-Licking Ban

Filed under: Humor — Patterico @ 9:45 am

If you read between the lines, ankle-licking is in no danger of being outlawed in the Netherlands.

Thanks to Eric V.

Pakistan Outed the Al Qaeda Mole?

Filed under: Terrorism — Patterico @ 9:03 am

It appears that Pakistan — not the Bush Administration — outed the Al Qaeda mole [actually, this is not crystal clear — see CLARIFICATION below]:

Reuters learned from Pakistani intelligence sources on Friday that computer expert Mohammad Naeem Noor Khan, arrested secretly in July, was working under cover to help the authorities track down al Qaeda militants in Britain and the United States when his name appeared in U.S. newspapers.

The U.S. confirmed the man’s name last Sunday, only after the New York Times already independently had the mole’s name:

Last Sunday, U.S. officials told reporters that someone held secretly by Pakistan was the source of the bulk of the information justifying the alert. The New York Times obtained Khan’s name independently, and U.S. officials confirmed it when it appeared in the paper the next morning.

Was it a mistake to confirm this? It appears it was. But the Bushies don’t appear to have been the first ones to reveal to the press that the guy was under cover. The Pakistanis were.

(Via Ranting Prof.)

CLARIFICATION: Although the “Friday” referred to in the story probably means the Friday after the revelation had hit the papers, the New York Times still had the guy’s name “independently” before the Bush Administration confirmed it. Here’s the point: how would they get it independently, if not from the Pakistanis?

UPDATE: More from Sebastian Holsclaw about how confusing the media reporting on this issue is. I wonder why? Are they trying to cover up their own responsibility in all of this?

Washington Post Prints Blueprint for Terrorists

Filed under: Terrorism — Patterico @ 8:14 am

The Washington Post this morning prints, on page A01, this “how to” primer for would-be terrorists:

But 11 years after Muslim extremists used an explosives-laden van to attack the World Trade Center and nearly three years after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, even senior federal agents acknowledge that the country has virtually no defense against a terrorist barreling down the street with a truck bomb.

Got that, Osama?

“If a person doesn’t care about dying, they can pull right up to a building, push a button and the building would go,” said Michael E. Bouchard, assistant director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. “That’s why we have checkpoints and try to keep large vehicles away from buildings.”

I hope you’re taking notes, Zarqawi.

As one ATF explosives expert said, “The only true defense is to shut the road down so no one can come down there. Sedans, sport-utility vehicles, a Ryder truck, a large flatbed vehicle or a truck — there’s no sure-fire way to look at that vehicle and say, ‘That’s a large vehicle bomb.'” The expert spoke on condition of anonymity because of agency security rules.

Agency security rules? You mean the government has rules against disclosing the weak points in our defenses against terrorism? Good job we have officials who are willing to defy those rules and say these things anonymously. Luckily we have major newspapers who think it’s a good idea to goad these folks into violating those rules — and to put the information they learn on the front page.

The article is replete with other helpful information for potential truck bombers: sales of ammonium nitrate are unregulated; such sales are tracked more closely in Nevada and South Carolina, where it is required by law; the government has asked rental agencies to pay special attention to limousines; hotels, malls, and stadiums are particularly vulnerable; a fingerprint-based background-check program for the issuance of commercial driver’s licenses won’t start until January 1.

The article is a real time-saver for the busy would-be terrorist, who might otherwise have to conduct a lot of research to learn these facts. I hope that any successful truck-bombers will be thoughtful enough to remember to send a thank-you note to the Post for making their job so easy.

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