Saturday, April 24, 2004

Pat Tillman, R.I.P.

When I saw the news about Pat Tillman yesterday, I was shocked.

This guy was one of the best, if not The Best, of Our Generation. He gave up everything for something he believed in. He died for that belief.

Some of us will raise wonderful families. Some of us will make a lot of money. Some of us will break 80. Very few of us will be Pat Tillman.

I know that I won't.


Tuesday, April 13, 2004

The Family That....

It seems that Genital Mangling has spread from Africa to Asia:

A Vietnamese teenager has been arrested for allegedly helping his mum cut off his father's penis.
The 17-year-old reportedly tied up his dad after his mum accused him of cheating on her.
Police in the central province of Quang Tri said the mother and son tied up the man before using a knife to cut off his genitals.
A police spokesman said: "The eldest child of the man and his wife cut him up before cutting his genitals with a knife.
"Some neighbours heard his screams and took him to hospital."
The 53-year-old man was taken to hospital too late to reattach his penis.
His three younger children were also in the house at the time, but were unable to prevent his alleged attackers.

No word on what happened to the dismembered member.


Monday, April 12, 2004

Why Did The Rabbit Cross The Road?

The Great John Rogers has a seasonal tribute for all of you animal lovers.


Louis Tap Dances Tomorrow

Louis Freeh will defend himself before the 9/11 Commission tomorrow. Freeh is big on excuses so expect some sort of combination of Sgt. Schultz and "I did everything I could."

He's already written in the Wall Street Journal:

"Pre-9/11, the FBI used all the means at its disposal to capture (Osama) bin Laden and to prevent future attacks against America"

That's bullshit.

I just wish that someone would ask this self-righteous asshole about the Phoenix
emo. He should be asked for the name of the Special Agent In Charge that killed it. The FBI had 70 al Qaeda investigations going on. Why wasn't this deemed significant?

The AP has already laid out a list that counter's Freeh's assertion including the Phoenix Memo:

* A July 2001 memo from an FBI agent in Phoenix warned that Islamic extremists might be training at flight schools and urged a nationwide probe.

* The arrest in August 2001 of Zacarias Moussaoui on immigration charges in Minneapolis, where his behavior at a flight training school had aroused suspicions. Moussaoui remains the only person charged in the United States in connection with the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

* Information that al-Qaida members had traveled freely to and from the United States for years and maintained a support network in this country.

* Signs of surveillance directed against federal buildings in New York and information from Ahmed Ressam, awaiting sentencing in a failed 1999 plot to bomb Los Angeles International Airport, that at least one senior al-Qaida lieutenant provided encouragement and support for the plan.

* Information from the CIA in late August 2001 that two of the soon-to-be hijackers had entered the United States and lived for a time in San Diego.

* An FBI conclusion that there were "patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks," and intelligence indicated al-Qaida's interest in using hijackings to free jailed comrades

For those of you who wonder whether the FBI is doing all it can today, remember that Ashcroft is wasting millions of dollars on obscenity cases. They won't be able to use the "lack of resources" excuse next time.

As for those of you more concerned about pictures of naked chicks finding their way into your 13 year-olds bedroom than terrorism, there is this from Clark Staten at

America blissfully flittered away valuable time (and capital) during the contrived prosperity and wide-spread corporate fraud of the 90's...and then ignored or tried to appease those who financed and led the Islamic revolution...first in Iran and later in several other countries While America played and spent their time being amused by "Monica-Gate" and the O.J. Simpson side-shows, the Jihadists concentrated on their goals and grew stronger and more capable. Our enemies organized and their message spread via a sympathetic press who continued to push for greater foreign aid, impotent negotiations, and gaining a better "understanding" of countries like Iran, Iraq, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, N. Korea, and Saudi Arabia...all of whom were probably complicit (at least to some extent) in promoting, financing, and exporting a violent advocacy of militant Islam throughout the world.

So, worry about Janet Jackson's tits, Donald Trump's hair and J.Lo's ass. The Islamo-fascists are preparing to strike again.


Thursday, April 08, 2004

I Can't Remember What I Had For Breakfast This Morning

Condi Rice covered her ass today:

"In hindsight, if anything might have helped stop 9/11, it would have been better information about threats inside the United States -- something made very difficult by structural and legal impediments that prevented the collection and sharing of information by our law enforcement and intelligence agencies."

There was, of course, nothing that could have been done to prevent 9/11.


From Russ Kick's Memory Hole:

Congress' 9/11 report quotes from a CIA document that remains classified to this day. Among the mountains of still-secret material that the investigative staff read was "The 11 September Attacks: A Preliminary Assessment," dated 19 November 2001, and written by the CIA. Here's the clinching sentence from this Agency report:
We do not know the process by which Bin Ladin and his lieutenants decided to hijack planes with the idea of flying them into buildings in the United States, but the idea of hijacking planes for suicide attacks had long been current in jihadist circles.

Russ also has posted the FBI Phoenix Memo which discussed Bin Laden sending followers to study at US aviation schools. This memo, dated 7/10/2001, tells us:

"The purpose of this communication is to advise the Bureau and New York of the possibility of a coordinated effort by Usama Bin Laden (UBL) to send students to the United States to attend civil aviation universities and colleges. Phoenix has observed an inordinate number of individuals of investigative interest who are attending or who have attended civil aviation universities and colleges in the State of Arizona. The inordinate number of these individuals attending these schools and reason to believe that a coordinated effort is underway to establish a cadre of individuals who will on day be working in activity against civil aviation targets.

Phoenix believes that the FBI should accumulate a listing of civil aviation universities/colleges around the country. FBI field offices with these types of schools in their area should establish appropriate liaison...."

So, the intelligence community knew that planes could be hijacked as suicide weapons and the FBI knew that something was up at US aviation schools.

I am posting Rice's testimony with Richard Ben-Veniste because it is particularly telling. Ben Veniste asked "Did you tell the president, at any time prior to August 6th, of the existence of Al Qaeda cells in the United States?" Rice responded "Dick Clarke had told me, I think in a memorandum -- I remember it as being only a line or two -- that there were Al Qaeda cells in the United States. Now, the question is, what did we need to do about that?
And I also understood that that was what the FBI was doing, that the FBI was pursuing these Al Qaeda cells. I believe in the August 6th memorandum it says that there were 70 full field investigations under way of these cells. And so there was no recommendation that we do something about this; the FBI was pursuing it. I really don't remember, Commissioner, whether I discussed this with the president."

"I really don't remember"?????? A fucking Ph.D. and Dean at Stanford doesn't remember if she told the President about 70 simultaneous FBI investigations into al Qaeda cells inside the US. This really fucking stinks.

BEN-VENISTE: Good morning, Dr. Rice.

RICE: Good morning.

BEN-VENISTE: Nice to see you again.

RICE: Nice to see you.

BEN-VENISTE: I want to ask you some questions about the August 6th PDB was prepared and self-generated by a CIA employee. Following Director Tenet's testimony on March 26th before us, the CIA clarified its version of events, saying that questions by the president prompted them to prepare the August 6th PDB.

Now, you have said to us in our meeting together earlier in February, that the president directed the CIA to prepare the August 6th PDB.

The extraordinary high terrorist attack threat level in the summer of 2001 is well-documented. And Richard Clarke's testimony about the possibility of an attack against the United States homeland was repeatedly discussed from May to August within the intelligence community, and that is well-documented.

You acknowledged to us in your interview of February 7, 2004, that Richard Clarke told you that Al Qaeda cells were in the United States.

Did you tell the president, at any time prior to August 6th, of the existence of Al Qaeda cells in the United States?

RICE: First, let me just make certain...

BEN-VENISTE: If you could just answer that question, because I only have a very limited...

RICE: I understand, Commissioner, but it's important...

BEN-VENISTE: Did you tell the president...

RICE: ... that I also address...


It's also important that, Commissioner, that I address the other issues that you have raised. So I will do it quickly, but if you'll just give me a moment.

BEN-VENISTE: Well, my only question to you is whether you...

RICE: I understand, Commissioner, but I will...

BEN-VENISTE: ... told the president.

RICE: If you'll just give me a moment, I will address fully the questions that you've asked.

First of all, yes, the August 6th PDB was in response to questions of the president -- and that since he asked that this be done. It was not a particular threat report. And there was historical information in there about various aspects of Al Qaeda's operations.

Dick Clarke had told me, I think in a memorandum -- I remember it as being only a line or two -- that there were Al Qaeda cells in the United States.

Now, the question is, what did we need to do about that?

And I also understood that that was what the FBI was doing, that the FBI was pursuing these Al Qaeda cells. I believe in the August 6th memorandum it says that there were 70 full field investigations under way of these cells. And so there was no recommendation that we do something about this; the FBI was pursuing it.

I really don't remember, Commissioner, whether I discussed this with the president.

BEN-VENISTE: Thank you.

RICE: I remember very well that the president was aware that there were issues inside the United States. He talked to people about this. But I don't remember the Al Qaeda cells as being something that we were told we needed to do something about.

BEN-VENISTE: Isn't it a fact, Dr. Rice, that the August 6th PDB warned against possible attacks in this country? And I ask you whether you recall the title of that PDB?

RICE: I believe the title was, "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States."

Now, the...

BEN-VENISTE: Thank you.

RICE: No, Mr. Ben-Veniste...

BEN-VENISTE: I will get into the...

RICE: I would like to finish my point here.

BEN-VENISTE: I didn't know there was a point.

RICE: Given that -- you asked me whether or not it warned of attacks.

BEN-VENISTE: I asked you what the title was.

RICE: You said, did it not warn of attacks. It did not warn of attacks inside the United States. It was historical information based on old reporting. There was no new threat information. And it did not, in fact, warn of any coming attacks inside the United States.

BEN-VENISTE: Now, you knew by August 2001 of Al Qaeda involvement in the first World Trade Center bombing, is that correct?

You knew that in 1999, late '99, in the millennium threat period, that we had thwarted an Al Qaeda attempt to blow up Los Angeles International Airport and thwarted cells operating in Brooklyn, New York, and Boston, Massachusetts.

As of the August 6th briefing, you learned that Al Qaeda members have resided or travelled to the United States for years and maintained a support system in the United States.

And you learned that FBI information since the 1998 blind sheikh warning of hijackings to free the blind sheikh indicated a pattern of suspicious activity in the country up until August 6th consistent with preparation for hijackings. Isn't that so?

RICE: Do you have other questions that you want me to answer as a part of the sequence?

BEN-VENISTE: Well, did you not -- you have indicated here that this was some historical document. And I am asking you whether it is not the case that you learned in the PDB memo of August 6th that the FBI was saying that it had information suggesting that preparations -- not historically, but ongoing, along with these numerous full field investigations against Al Qaeda cells, that preparations were being made consistent with hijackings within the United States?

RICE: What the August 6th PDB said, and perhaps I should read to you...

BEN-VENISTE: We would be happy to have it declassified in full at this time, including its title.


RICE: I believe, Mr. Ben-Veniste, that you've had access to this PDB. But let me just...

BEN-VENISTE: But we have not had it declassified so that it can be shown publicly, as you know.

RICE: I believe you've had access to this PDB -- exceptional access. But let me address your question.

BEN-VENISTE: Nor could we, prior to today, reveal the title of that PDB.

RICE: May I address the question, sir?

The fact is that this August 6th PDB was in response to the president's questions about whether or not something might happen or something might be planned by Al Qaeda inside the United States. He asked because all of the threat reporting or the threat reporting that was actionable was about the threats abroad, not about the United States.

This particular PDB had a long section on what bin Laden had wanted to do -- speculative, much of it -- in '97, '98; that he had, in fact, liked the results of the 1993 bombing.

It had a number of discussions of -- it had a discussion of whether or not they might use hijacking to try and free a prisoner who was being held in the United States -- Ressam. It reported that the FBI had full field investigations under way.

And we checked on the issue of whether or not there was something going on with surveillance of buildings, and we were told, I believe, that the issue was the courthouse in which this might take place.

Commissioner, this was not a warning. This was a historic memo -- historical memo prepared by the agency because the president was asking questions about what we knew ...

BEN-VENISTE: If you are willing to declassify that document, then others can make up their minds about it.

Let me ask you a general matter, beyond the fact that this memorandum provided information, not speculative, but based on intelligence information, that bin Laden had threatened to attack the United States and specifically Washington, D.C.

There was nothing reassuring, was there, in that PDB?

RICE: Certainly not. There was nothing reassuring.

But I can also tell you that there was nothing in this memo that suggested that an attack was coming on New York or Washington, D.C. There was nothing in this memo as to time, place, how or where. This was not a threat report to the president or a threat report to me.

BEN-VENISTE: We agree that there were no specifics. Let me move on, if I may.

RICE: There were no specifics, and, in fact, the country had already taken steps through the FAA to warn of potential hijackings. The country had already taken steps through the FBI to task their 56 field offices to increase their activity. The country had taken the steps that it could given that there was no threat reporting about what might happen inside the United States.

BEN-VENISTE: We have explored that and we will continue to with respect to the muscularity and the specifics of those efforts.

The president was in Crawford, Texas, at the time he received the PDB, you were not with him, correct?

RICE: That is correct.

BEN-VENISTE: Now, was the president, in words or substance, alarmed or in any way motivated to take any action, such as meeting with the director of the FBI, meeting with the attorney general, as a result of receiving the information contained in the PDB?

RICE: I want to repeat that when this document was presented, it was presented as, yes, there were some frightening things -- and by the way, I was not at Crawford, but the president and I were in contact and I might have even been, though I can't remember, with him by video link during that time.

The president was told this is historical information. I'm told he was told this is historical information and there was nothing actionable in this. The president knew that the FBI was pursuing this issue. The president knew that the director of central intelligence was pursuing this issue. And there was no new threat information in this document to pursue.

BEN-VENISTE: Final question, because my time has almost expired.

Do you believe that, had the president taken action to issue a directive to the director of CIA to ensure that the FBI had pulsed the agency, to make sure that any information which we know now had been collected was transmitted to the director, that the president might have been able to receive information from CIA with respect to the fact that two Al Qaeda operatives who took part in the 9/11 catastrophe were in the United States -- Al-Hajmi (ph) and Minhar (ph); and that Moussaoui, who Dick Clarke was never even made aware of, who had jihadist connections, who the FBI had arrested, and who had been in a flight school in Minnesota trying to learn the avionics of a commercial jetliner despite the fact that he had no training previously, had no explanation for the funds in his bank account, and no explanation for why he was in the United States -- would that have possibly, in your view, in hindsight, made a difference in the ability to collect this information, shake the trees, as Richard Clarke had said, and possibly, possibly interrupt the plotters?

RICE: My view, Commissioner Ben-Veniste, as I said to Chairman Kean, is that, first of all, the director of central intelligence and the director of the FBI, given the level of threat, were doing what they thought they could do to deal with the threat that we faced.

There was no threat reporting of any substance about an attack coming in the United States.

RICE: And the director of the FBI and the director of the CIA, had they received information, I am quite certain -- given that the director of the CIA met frequently face to face with the president of the United States -- that he would have made that available to the president or to me.

I do not believe that it is a good analysis to go back and assume that somehow maybe we would have gotten lucky by, quote, "shaking the trees." Dick Clarke was shaking the trees, director of central intelligence was shaking the trees, director of the FBI was shaking the trees. We had a structural problem in the United States.

BEN-VENISTE: Did the president meet with the director of the FBI?

RICE: We had a structural problem in the United States, and that structural problem was that we did not share domestic and foreign intelligence in a way to make a product for policymakers, for good reasons -- for legal reasons, for cultural reasons -- a product that people could depend upon.

BEN-VENISTE: Did the president meet with the director of...

KEAN: Commissioner, we got to move on...

BEN-VENISTE: ... the FBI between August 6th and September 11th?

KEAN: ... to Commissioner Fielding.

RICE: I will have to get back to you on that. I am not certain.


Wednesday, April 07, 2004

OOPS! John, Is That A Carrot Up Your Ass?

I thought that I was back. I was just pretty busy and too freakin' tired. Now, I'm fucking pissed.

What the hell is the Attorney General, John "Freedom of All The Speech That Jesus Approve of" Ashcroft, thinking?

Matt Drudge has linked to a Baltimore Sun piece that tells us that there are at least 40 government employees trolling the Internet for porn:

Lam Nguyen's job is to sit for hours in a chilly, quiet room devoid of any color but gray and look at pornography. This job, which Nguyen does earnestly from 9 to 5, surrounded by a half-dozen other "computer forensic specialists" like him, has become the focal point of the Justice Department's operation to rid the world of porn.
In this field office in Washington, 32 prosecutors, investigators and a handful of FBI agents are spending millions of dollars to bring anti-obscenity cases to courthouses across the country for the first time in 10 years. Nothing is off limits, they warn, even soft-core cable programs such as HBO's long-running Real Sex or the adult movies widely offered in guestrooms of major hotel chains.

There's so little going on out there that our dim-witted Attorney General thinks that our greatest threat is the penetration-less fare served to lonely salesmen at Comfort Inns around America. Tom Ridge told us today that the federal government doesn't have enough money to defend our ports, yet Ashcroft has the funds to establish a jerk-off patrol!

In a speech in 2002, Ashcroft made it clear that the Justice Department intends to try. He said pornography "invades our homes persistently though the mail, phone, VCR, cable TV and the Internet," and has "strewn its victims from coast to coast."

This shit is available if you choose to watch it. Doesn't this motherfucking snake handler get it? Freedom is about having choices. This dumb hick has found some common ground with Mullah Omar.

I know of no cable box that tunes in automatically to an uscrambled Playboy Channel when it's turned on. Maybe people shouldn't watch porn or Howard Stern or even The Goddamn View if it offends them.

Jesus, are we that far gone that we need a shitkickin' Ozark hillbilly to defend us from naked people performing very human functions?

Ashcroft, a religious man who does not drink alcohol or caffeine, smoke, gamble or dance... You've got to be fucking kidding me. This goddamn stiff even finds The Twist sinful!

Hey, John, Better keep an eye on that Chubby Checker character.