Thursday, September 13, 2007

Almost live-blogging the Edwards response

"Our troops are stuck between a president without a plan to succeed and a Congress without the courage to bring them home."

--John Edwards

Good line from the 2-minute message paid for by the John Edwards presidential campaign. Not sure how I feel about the likes of Edwards -- who, while in the Senate, voted authorize a presidential option to invade Iraq -- chiding his former colleagues in the Senate for lack of courage on the war. Oh, sure, he's since said he made "a mistake" -- something Hillary Clinton still won't concede about her same vote -- but that's easy to say after the fact, after you've left the body.

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Live blogging the president's speech

"Anbar is a good example of how our strategy is working."

--George W. Bush, Sept. 13, 2007

Blast kills top sheik working with U.S. in Iraq
Roadside bomb slays leader
who cooperated in fight against al-Qaida

President George W. Bush greets local leaders of Al Anbar Province before their meeting at Al Asad Airbase, Al Anbar Province, Iraq, Monday, September 3, 2007. White House photo by Eric Draper

BAGHDAD (AP) - The most prominent figure in a U.S.-backed revolt of Sunni sheiks against al-Qaida in Iraq was killed Thursday by a bomb planted near his home in Anbar province, 10 days after he met with President Bush, police and tribal leaders said.

Abdul-Sattar Abu Risha was leader of the Anbar Salvation Council, also known as the Anbar Awakening — an alliance of clans backing the Iraqi government and U.S. forces.

Officials said his assassination would be a huge setback for U.S. efforts in Iraq, because it sends a message to others who are cooperating with coalition forces or thinking about cooperating against al-Qaida.

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Just because you're paranoid...

...doesn't mean they're not lying.

Earlier this week, National Intelligence Director Michael McConnell asserted that the new, extra-Constitutional powers given the administration last month by Congress (with the help of 57 negligent or craven Democrats) to spy on Americans actually helped to foil the terrorism plot uncovered in Germany. Here are Newsweek's Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball:

On Monday, McConnell—-questioned by Sen. Joe Lieberman—claimed the law, intended to remedy what the White House said was an intelligence gap, had helped to "facilitate" the arrest of three suspects believed to be planning massive car bombings against American targets in Germany. Other U.S. intelligence-community officials questioned the accuracy of McConnell's testimony and urged his office to correct it. Four intelligence-community officials, who asked for anonymity discussing sensitive material, said the new law, dubbed the "Protect America Act," played little if any role in the unraveling of the German plot. The U.S. military initially provided information that helped the Germans uncover the plot. But that exchange of information took place months before the new "Protect America" law was passed.
The Protect America [from Americans who oppose Bush administration policies] Act" is scheduled to expire in February, and the administration is already launching an effort to make it permanent.

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