Patterico's Pontifications


Obama’s Teleprompter Fails Again

Filed under: General,Obama — Patterico @ 9:53 pm

I can’t seem to embed the video, so I’ll drive the traffic to Hot Air, where I saw it.

Amusing and pathetic.

Obama’s Folks Set Up Photo-Op Resembling 9/11, Terrorizing Manhattan

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:18 pm

Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane!

It’s Obama’s folks doing a photo op!

. . . without telling the public that a couple of planes were going to be flying low, past some Manhattan skyscrapers. Now what could possibly be the problem with that?

“Everybody panicked,” said Daisy Cooper, a Merrill Lynch worker in Jersey City, who lost a nephew on 9/11. “Everybody was screaming and we all ran downstairs. I’m devastated…Everybody was running, we didn’t know why we were running. We just knew it was a plane, there we go, 9/11 again.”…

Here’s some video:

Just by watching a video, it’s hard to tell how bad this looked from the ground, although the screaming and apparent panic of the onlookers certainly gives you some indication.

P.S. However, back me up on this, L.A. residents: how many times have you seen a jet circling downtown and been unsettled by how amazingly close the plane seemed to the skyscrapers? (Which is not to say that the folks in Manhattan were wrong to be worried. My guess is that the planes in Manhattan were much closer than the planes in L.A. get. It’s more to say that they let the planes in L.A. get waaaay too close to the skyscrapers.)

P. P.S. Recall that Tim Noah, the fact-challenged skeptic of the effectiveness of waterboarding KSM, assured us recently that

attacking buildings by flying planes into them didn’t remain a viable al-Qaida strategy even through Sept. 11, 2001. Thanks to cell phones, passengers on United Flight 93 were able to learn that al-Qaida was using planes as missiles and crashed the plane before it could hit its target. There was no way future passengers on any flight would let a terrorist who killed the pilot and took the controls fly wherever he pleased.

So tell me: why are the people in that video so panicked?

Sympathy for the Company?

Filed under: General — Karl @ 9:23 am

[Posted by Karl]

On Friday, Instapundit Glenn Reynolds sardonically commented:

I’D FEEL SORRIER FOR THE C.I.A. FOLKS, if they hadn’t run a multiyear leak-war against the Bush Administration. Did they really think electing Obama would improve their situation? Once again, they don’t seem to have gamed things out to the end.

In an update, he conceded that there is a difference between the officers of the National Clandestine Service who do the hard work in the field, and the stripey-pants analysts, who second-guess things at langley.  Nevertheless, Prof. Reynolds asserts that if “CIA leadership had wanted to shut down those leaks, I think it probably could have.”  True enough, except that the Bush Administration was undermined by folks at the top of the CIA for years.  It is the entrenched bureaucracy at the CIA that ran the leak war, underwrote Bush’s opponents, and so on.

Thus, it is notable that those protesting the Obama Administration’s release of the interrogation memos include not only former Bush CIA chief Porter Goss — who was successfully resisted by the entrenched CIA bureaucracy — but also by former spies like Michael Scheuer, who was allowed to publish the book Imperial Hubris as part of the bureacracy’s anti-Bush campaign. Indeed, he penned a fairly blistering op-ed on the subject in the Washington Post yesterday.

Scheuer and his Company sponsors may deserve no sympathy.  However, we should not let schadenfreude obscure our national security concerns.  The fact that people like Scheuer are adding their voices to the criticism of these document dumps is an alarm bell, signaling just how much harm that Obama’s Leftist moral posturing is doing to our human intelligence capabilities.


More Swine Flu Cases Stemming from Mexico

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:40 am

The AP reports more swine flu outbreaks stemming from Mexico:

New Zealand reported suspected swine flu cases Monday in a second group of teenage students returning from Mexico, as Asian nations with potent memories of SARS and bird flu outbreaks screened travelers for fever with thermal scanners.

Hong Kong assigned a team of scientists to find a quick test for the latest virus to raise global fears of a pandemic, following confirmed human cases of the disease in Mexico, United States and Canada.

More than 100 people in Mexico are believed to have died from the new flu and more than 1,600 sickened, prompting widespread school closures and other measures.

Lucky thing for us we have our border locked down tight!

L.A. Times: Our Article on the Effectiveness of Waterboarding Leaves Out the Biggest Success of Waterboarding

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,Terrorism — Patterico @ 7:13 am

The L.A. Times had a front page article yesterday titled CIA reportedly declined to closely evaluate harsh interrogations:

The CIA used an arsenal of severe interrogation techniques on imprisoned Al Qaeda suspects for nearly seven years without seeking a rigorous assessment of whether the methods were effective or necessary, according to current and former U.S. officials familiar with the matter.

Not mentioned, anywhere in the article, is the fact that recently declassified memos confirm that waterboarding KSM was key to disrupting a plot to fly airplanes into the tallest skyscraper in Los Angeles.

You might think that would be something that the biggest Los Angeles newspaper would care about.

You’d be wrong. The closest the paper comes to telling readers this fact is to say that in a speech,

Bush said that “alternative” interrogation methods had been crucial to getting Al Qaeda operatives, including Abu Zubaydah and self-professed Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, to talk.

Not good enough. What does it mean to say that we got KSM to “talk”? It means that we got him to “disclose details of massive plots against the United States.” According to the intelligence community, waterboarding KSM saved thousands of lives.

How do you make it though an entire article on the effectiveness of harsh interrogation and not even mention that little tidbit?

Ask the geniuses at the Los Angeles Times.

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