Archive for November 15th, 2007

Yon: On Patrol with the Iraqi National Police

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

I found this article over on Little Green Footballs. It tells a different story about Iraq than the one you will hear on the nightly news.

Soldiers from 2-2 SCR patrol through what months ago were some of the most dangerous streets of all Iraq: South Baghdad. Months ago this likely would have resulted in a serious firefight. Tonight, 14 November 2007, we patrolled with members of the Iraqi National Police. All along the way people were happy to see us. Stores were opening. Kids were playing soccer or following us block after block. Some adults were playing ping-pong here and there, while others welcomed us to talk, including a couple of older Iraqi women who talked on and on and on, until finally the soldiers had to make an excuse to leave. I’ve seen this in many places in Iraq. When the older women get a chance to tell about their neighborhood, they want to tell about the whole neighborhood – on and on and on. Sometimes the soldiers make fake radio calls so they can leave.

San Francisco Approves ID Cards for Illegals

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

It doesn’t amaze me which city did this, it does amaze me that they apparently have no concept of what the word “illegal” means. From ID card for illegal aliens, to publicly endorsed nudity and perverted sex acts, San Francisco is clearly one of America’s cesspools of evil. I pray for those people who live there who are trying to live Godly lives. It must be very difficult. You have my prayers, my thoughts and my admiration.

SAN FRANCISCO — The city of San Francisco has tentatively approved a program to provide identification cards to illegal immigrants, transgender people and other residents who may be unable or unwilling to get a state-issued driver’s license.

The identification card program was modeled after one launched this summer in New Haven, Connecticut, and is designed to help residents without IDs to access services and feel safe dealing with police, even though they are breaking the law by being in this country illegally.

Government agencies and nonprofit groups that receive city funds would be required to accept the cards as valid identification and proof of residency except for hiring or other areas where doing so conflicts with federal or state laws.

Original Link.

Hamas: Hillary Ticket to Palestinian Victory

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

The Hamas terrorist want us to vote Hillary into the presidency. It should really worry people when terrorist have a favorite presidential candidate.

Hamas believes Sen. Hillary Clinton, if elected president in 2008, will end President Bush’s “unlimited military and diplomatic support for Israel” and adapt a more “evenhanded” approach toward the Palestinians, says the group’s top political adviser.

Speaking yesterday with WND Jerusalem bureau chief Aaron Klein, Ahmed Yousuf, the top aide to Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas leader in Gaza and deposed prime minister of the Hamas-led Palestinian government, said in recorded comments the group heard from “many Americans” that if the Democrats take the White House next year they will implement “drastic changes” to U.S. foreign policy and relations with the Palestinians.

“I do believe Miss Clinton will have a more balanced policy when it comes to how to solve the Arab-Israeli conflict,” Yousuf told Klein. “And I don’t think she is going to give to the Israelis this unlimited military and diplomatic support that they are actually enjoying now; so … the future politics in the region will [see] a very drastic change when it comes to how to handle the Palestinian question.”

Original Link.

Government Investigators Smuggled Bomb Components Past Airport Screeners in Covert Tests

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

What a nightmare!!

WASHINGTON — Government investigators smuggled liquid explosives and detonators past airport security, exposing a dangerous hole in the nation’s ability to keep these forbidden items off of airplanes, according to a report made public Wednesday.

The investigators learned about the components to make an improvised explosive device and an improvised incendiary device on the Internet and purchased the parts at local stores, said the report by the Government Accountability Office. Investigators were able to purchase the components for the two devices for under $150, and they studied the published guidelines for screening to determine how to conceal the prohibited items as they went through checkpoint security.

At the end of the testing, investigators concluded that terrorists could use publicly available information and a few cheaply available supplies to damage an airplane and threaten passenger safety.

“It is possible to bring the components for several IEDs and one IID through TSA checkpoints and onto airline flights without being challenged by transportation security officers,” said the GAO, Congress’ investigative arm.

The covert tests were conducted at Transportation Security Administration checkpoints at 19 airports in March, May and June of this year. The GAO did not identify the airports.

In August 2006, the TSA changed its screening policies after officials foiled a plot to use liquid explosives to blow up commercial airlines headed toward the U.S.

TSA spokeswoman Ellen Howe said the exercise tested only one of the agency’s 19 layers of security and therefore doesn’t mean the overall system is unsafe.

“While people think about us in terms of the checkpoints and they see us as the checkpoints, there’s a lot more layers of security,” she said. In addition to the checkpoints, the TSA uses different technologies and has officials who check the validity of documents and observe people’s behaviors throughout the airport. “Just because somebody gets through one layer doesn’t mean they’re going to get through all of the layers.”

The report released Wednesday is a version of a classified report with sensitive information left out. The report notes that the covert operations were intended to test only security at checkpoints and not all of the TSA’s security layers.

The report listed several instances in which investigators were able to make it through security checkpoints while carrying prohibited items:

— On March 23, a TSA screener would not let one investigator through a checkpoint with a small, unlabeled bottle of shampoo, even though it was a legitimate carry-on item. But the same investigator was able to bring through a liquid component of bomb that would start a fire.

— On May 8, an investigator placed coins in his pockets to ensure he would receive a secondary screening at the checkpoint. But after doing a pat-down and using an electronic hand wand, the screener was not able to catch the prohibited items the investigator brought through the checkpoint.

The TSA agreed with the investigators’ recommendation to introduce “more aggressive, visible and unpredictable security measures,” as well as the recommendation to deploy new detection technologies.

Original Link.

“The Coming U.S. Drought (Is Here)” by Paul Edwards

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Joel Belz, in the current issue of World magazine, compiles a list of “big problems facing our society”—a list, perhaps, not unlike one you and I might compile:

When I asked a group of friends a few days ago what issues came first to their minds in terms of the big problems facing our society, the answers were not surprising. International terrorism; the war in Iraq; the scourge of abortion; the definition and disintegration of the family; genocide in Sudan; the monopoly of secularist, statist education; a dismaying electoral process in the United States—it didn’t take this alert group long to assemble a list of nearly 20 gloomy things to think about.

Interestingly, Belz found the list lacking in at least one major issue of concern:

To all that darkness, I added still one other possible cause for dismay: drought in the United States. And I suggested that just one more year of shortfall in the usual rain patterns in big regions of the country might well lead to social disruptions of a kind that would eclipse our concern for the list we first assembled.

My guess is drought wasn’t on your list of gloomy things to think about, either.

Let’s be clear: we’re not talking about a potential drought, but a very real and present drought in highly populated areas of the United States. The governor of Georgia recently declared a state of emergency in 85 of the state’s 159 counties “where rainfall the last few years has been about half of what is normal.” The state of Georgia has now mandated a 10 percent reduction in water use by force of law with fines levied for non-compliance. And according to Belz, there have been “hints that the National Guard might have to be called out to enforce the conservation measures”—an indication of just how serious this drought has become.

The University of Nebraska at Lincoln monitors the severity of the drought in the country at their U.S. Drought Monitor website. The image map is alarming. Belz observes:

We humans can drill deeper for oil and gas, and we can build higher kilowatt electrical generators, and we can print money to bluff our way through an economic crisis. We can even, when desperation sets in, send a surge of soldiers to Iraq. But no one has figured out a way yet to hook a fleet of 747s to a bank of rain clouds, tow them to Georgia, Arizona, or southern California’s wildfires, and flip a switch to make those clouds drop their rain.

Widespread shortages of water—life sustaining water, which most of us take for granted every day—will quickly demonstrate how utterly dependent we humans are on a sovereign God. Our relative comfort as Americans, resulting from our dependence on our ability to master technology and make it our slave, has lulled us into believing that drought is a Third World problem, inflicted on humans less technologically advanced than us. We confidently think to ourselves, “It could never happen here.”

Our American arrogance is in for a very rude awakening by a God many believe is himself asleep. We will wake up to discover it was not our self-created technology sustaining us after all, but “the giver of every good and perfect gift” (James 1:17). When the One who “upholds all things by the word of his power” (Hebrews 1:3) closes the windows of heaven and restrains the rain, no amount of human ingenuity can reverse His will. “Our God is in the heavens: He hath done whatsoever He hath pleased” (Psalm 115:3).

Only God can make it rain, but you and I can be obedient to God’s command to be faithful stewards of the environmental resources he has put in our care. This is not a liberal or conservative issue. This is a spiritual issue, and nothing reveals the true nature of our spiritual nature better than how we treat that which is at our disposal. Do we care for it or do we abuse it? How we act will be determined by what we are at the very core of our beings. And what we are at the very core of our beings, apart from the grace of God in Christ Jesus, is depraved.

Our core corruption is vividly on display in our American propensity to avarice and wastefulness. Followers of the One of whom it is said, “All things were made by him, and without him was not anything made that was made,” (John 1:3) have a spiritual responsibility to stop wasting His natural resources, especially water.

Original Link.

Quote of the Day (Jerusalem Archeology)

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

“In almost every place where [archaeological] digging is taking place throughout Israel, [archaeologists] are uncovering Jewish artifacts and history. But there is no place in the entire country where Palestinian history is unearthed.”
-Yigal Amitay, a spokesman for Knesset Member Uri Ariel.

That’s because the Palestinians are a made up people who never existed before 1967. Check out this excerpt By Joseph Farah:

The truth is that Palestine is no more real than Never-Never Land. The first time the name was used was in 70 A.D. when the Romans committed genocide against the Jews, smashed the Temple and declared the land of Israel would be no more. From then on, the Romans promised, it would be known as Palestine. The name was derived from the Philistines, a Goliathian people conquered by the Jews centuries earlier. It was a way for the Romans to add insult to injury. They also tried to change the name of Jerusalem to Aelia Capitolina, but that had even less staying power.

Palestine has never existed — before or since — as an autonomous entity. It was ruled alternately by Rome, by Islamic and Christian crusaders, by the Ottoman Empire and, briefly, by the British after World War I. The British agreed to restore at least part of the land to the Jewish people as their homeland.

There is no language known as Palestinian. There is no distinct Palestinian culture. There has never been a land known as Palestine governed by Palestinians. Palestinians are Arabs, indistinguishable from Jordanians (another recent invention), Syrians, Lebanese, Iraqis, etc.
Keep in mind that the Arabs control 99.9 percent of the Middle East lands. Israel represents one-tenth of 1 percent of the landmass.

The division of Jerusalem will not go over well with the people of Israel and Jews the world over.

Jerusalem (CNSNews.com) – Some Israeli lawmakers are seizing on archeology as a way to fight Prime Minister Olmert’s apparent plan to divide the city of Jerusalem.

The Knesset members see archeological digs as the best way to illustrate the link between the Jewish people, Jerusalem and the Land of Israel — and to mobilize public opinion against the division of Jerusalem.

The revival of the archeology lobby in the last few weeks comes ahead of the U.S.-sponsored Israeli-Palestinian summit, which is supposed to take place in Annapolis, Maryland, before the end of the year.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has indicated that he is willing to divide Jerusalem, keeping Jewish neighborhoods under Israeli control and giving Arab neighborhoods to the control of a future Palestinian state.

The archeology lobby wants to steer Israeli citizens against the idea, said Yigal Amitay, a spokesman for Knesset Member Uri Ariel of the rightwing National Union/National Religious Party.

In almost every place where archeological digging is taking place throughout Israel, archeologists are uncovering Jewish artifacts and history. But there is no place in the entire country where Palestinian history is unearthed, Amitay told Cybercast News Service on Wednesday.

The more archeological artifacts that are uncovered, Amitay said, the harder it will be for Olmert to gain Jewish support for making a deal on Jerusalem, he said.

Original Link.

House Passes Anti-War Bill Again

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

And the president is going to veto it again.
Rep. John Boehner says it well:

“By Christmas, some 3,000 American troops will return home from Iraq after achieving remarkable success in our fight against al Qaeda. And how is Congress welcoming them back? By passing yet another politically-motivated measure that cuts off funding for those continuing to serve our nation in Iraq and hamstrings the commanders who are leading them to victory. This measure will never be signed into law, and it represents yet another failure for Democratic leaders intent on putting politics before accomplishment.

“Congress would be better served by sending the President the long-overdue veterans and troops funding bill, which enjoys broad, bipartisan support in both the House and Senate. But the Majority leadership has played politics with this critical legislation, stalling its completion to take up today’s cynical proposal to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in Iraq. Consequently, returning troops and their families will face more hurdles and take more time to get the housing and health care benefits they deserve – all thanks to Congress.

“Under General Petraeus’ strategy, our troops are routing al Qaeda in Iraq, improving security for the Iraqi people, and laying the foundation for critical political reconciliation in that country. Congress should not undermine this success and risk having al Qaeda stand back up. Instead, Members of both parties should recognize that the Petraeus plan is working, continue to solidify our troops’ gains, and work to bring them home after victory, not defeat.”

Of course the media bias is there as usual, as seen in this comment at the end of an article by the New York Times:

The debate over war financing also provided a forum for Republicans to praise recent developments in Iraq, including what they called a decline in violence.

As Michelle Malkin points out:

“…what they called a decline in violence.”
“They” are not the only ones calling it that.

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats pushed through a $50 billion bill for the Iraq war Wednesday night that would require President Bush to start bringing troops home in coming weeks with a goal of ending combat by December 2008.

The legislation, passed 218-203, was largely a symbolic jab at Bush, who already has begun reducing force levels but opposes a congressionally mandated timetable on the war. And while the measure was unlikely to pass in the Senate — let alone overcome a presidential veto — Democrats said they wanted voters to know they weren’t giving up.

“The fact is, we can no longer sustain the military deployment in Iraq,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. “Staying there in the manner that we are there is no longer an option.”

The White House pledged to veto the bill, and Republicans said they would back the president.

“These votes, like the dozens of previous failed votes, put the interests of radical interest groups ahead of the needs of our military and their mission,” an administration statement said.

The bill represents about a quarter of the $196 billion Bush requested for combat operations in the 2008 budget year, which began Oct 1.

It would compel an unspecified number of troops to leave Iraq within 30 days, a requirement Bush is already on track to meet as he begins in coming weeks to reverse the 30,000 troop buildup he ordered earlier this year. It also sets a goal of ending combat by Dec. 15, 2008, and states that money included in the bill should be used to redeploy troops and “not to extend or prolong the war.”

The measure also would set government-wide standards on interrogation, effectively barring the CIA from using such harsh techniques as waterboarding, which simulates drowning.

The bill was on shaky ground this week, after some liberal Democrats said they were concerned it was too soft and would not force Bush to end the war. Conservative Democrats said they thought it went too far and would tie the hands of military commanders.

The bill’s prospects brightened somewhat after three leading anti-war Democrats announced they would support it. California Reps. Lynn Woolsey, Barbara Lee and Maxine Waters said they had agreed to swing behind it because the bill explicitly states the money should be used to bring troops home.

But still uncertain the bill would pass, Pelosi on Wednesday delayed a vote by several hours while she met with supporters and asked them to help her round up votes.

Fifteen Democrats broke ranks and joined 188 Republicans in opposing the measure. Four Republicans joined 214 Democrats in supporting it.

Original Link.