Patterico's Pontifications


Al Qaeda: Surprisingly, Out of Their Minds — And Alienating Iraqis

Filed under: War — Patterico @ 5:04 pm

If we stick it out in Iraq, we could still win — because radical Islam is so crazy it’s alienating the Iraqis:

At least two major insurgent groups are battling al-Qaeda in provinces outside Baghdad, American military commanders said Friday, an indication of a deepening rift between Sunni guerrilla groups in Iraq.

U.S. officers say a growing number of Sunni tribes are turning against al-Qaeda, repelled by the terror group’s sheer brutality and austere religious extremism.

What religious extremism? I’m so glad you asked:

American commanders cite al-Qaeda’s severe brand of Islam, which is so extreme that in Baqouba, al-Qaeda has warned street vendors not to place tomatoes beside cucumbers because the vegetables are different genders, Col. David Sutherland said.

These people are nuts, and Iraqis are starting to see it.

UPDATE: DRJ points to evidence that the cucumbers and tomatoes thing is nothing new. Funny. I’d never heard it before . . .

Any Times Select Subscribers Out There?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:17 am

I apparently have a link from this New York Times blog, but I don’t know what it says, because it’s behind the TimesSelect paywall. Is there anyone willing to admit that they pay money for TimesSelect who can tell me what it says?

UPDATE: Anyone?

UPDATE x2: Oregonian has come through:

April 20, 2007, 10:53 am
For Gonzales, a Post-Panel Pile-On

Has there ever been a worse-reviewed appearance before a Congressional panel than Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’s testimony yesterday before the Senate Judiciary Committee? By early afternoon, National Review White House correspondent Byron York had given up hope that Gonzales could salvage his reputation. Calling it “a disastrous morning,” York wrote:

The major problem with his testimony is that Gonzales maintains, in essence, that he doesn’t know why he fired at least some of the eight dismissed U.S. attorneys. When, under questioning by Republican Sen. Sam Brownback, Gonzales listed the reasons for each firing, it was clear that in a number of cases, he had reconstructed the reason for the dismissal after the fact. He didn’t know why he fired them at the time, other than the action was recommended by senior Justice Department staff.

Later, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham returned to the subject. “Mr. Attorney General, most of this is a stretch,” Graham told Gonzales. “I think most of them [the U.S. attorneys] had personality disagreements with the White House, and you made up reasons to fire them.” Gonzales disagreed but had nothing to support his position. Throughout the morning, Gonzales insisted that he is the man in charge of the Justice Department, and accepted responsibility for the firings, but his testimony suggests he had little idea what was going on.

Most conservatives found themselves in agreement with York. Patrick Frey, a prosecutor in Los Angeles County who blogs at Patterico’s Pontifications, writes, “It’s clear from Gonzales’s answer that, when he approved these firings, he really didn’t know why he was firing each U.S. Attorney. He just did what other people told him to do.” Frey pleads, “Please resign. Put us out of our misery. Please.”

I had a feeling it would be one of the lefties who responded. Thank you to Oregonian.

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