Port Deal Pause Provides 'Chance to Calm Down'

Dubai Ports World yesterday issued a statement that's well worth a read. Here's the basic idea:

with a view to addressing concerns regarding the original review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), DP World has today formally requested to be subject to a further CFIUS review.

DPW also outlined some of the steps it would take to ensure American confidence in its operation of U.S. ports -- including keeping a U.S. citizen in the position of chief security officer -- and reiterated its promise to hold off on taking over the six ports until after the 45-day review. DPW executives are so confident that their company will not be found to pose any security threat that they have actually invited an investigation that CFIUS had previously deemed unnecessary.

The Times of London wrote that "by delaying the implementation of its takeover, DP World has provided Congress with the chance to calm down" -- not to mention removing the urgency from legislation to block the deal. The investigation is set to begin following the formalization of DPW's purchase of British company P&O.

Many Debaters advocated such a delay, although some insist that the extra scrutiny means the takeover of U.S. ports is as good as sunk.

In the meantime, private objections could still stand in the way. Eller & Co. of Miami, a P&O business partner, petitioned the British court not to sanction the sale, citing (among other concerns) uncertainty in the United States. In DPW's initial offer for P&O (see page 21, section 2.1.), DPW stipulated that CFIUS requirements would be met prior to British court approval of the deal. That said, a compelling case can be made that those requirements have been met: Since any further investigation is purely voluntary -- CFIUS already determined that national security was not at risk from the takeover -- those terms have been satisfied.

Writing in the Financial Times (subscription required), Gideon Rose, managing editor at the journal Foreign Affairs, suggests using the 45-day delay to educate Congress and the public about the benefits of globalization and "how wrong it is to lump all Arabs, Muslims and Middle Easterners into a scary, undifferentiated mass." He also appreciates the irony of the role reversal, as Bush's opposition accuses him of being lax on national security:

the Bush administration is reaping what it sowed, having previously played politics with homeland security and the war on terrorism, having blurred distinctions in the Muslim world by conflating the unrelated struggles against al-Qaeda and Saddam Hussein and having squandered its credibility and authority by its incompetent handling of the Iraq occupation and Hurricane Katrina.

Having seized the opportunity presented to them, members of Congress continue to use the ports issue as a political tool. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign Web site just sent out an e-mail with this quote from the senator in bold: "Our port security is too important to place in the hands of foreign governments," Clinton said. If her push to prohibit foreign management of American ports is successful, that could mean disaster for the 80 percent of American port terminals that are managed by foreign operators -- and the U.S. economy could suffer right along with them.

Read the very enlightening New York Times story on the subject, and then decide: Does it really make sense to deny foreign management of our ports? Is it even feasible to do so?

By Emily Messner |  February 27, 2006; 2:15 PM ET  | Category:  U.S. Foreign Policy
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If her push to prohibit foreign management of American ports is successful, that could mean disaster for the 80 percent of American port terminals that are managed by foreign operators -- and the U.S. economy could suffer right along with them. By Emily Messner | February 27, 2006; 02:15 PM ET

So Emily's written 4 blogs now about the port deal, and she STILL can't differentiate between foreign-owned and foreign-state-owned. A private foreign firm and a foreign government are the same thing in her view. I guess that's why she's in the small 17% of Americans that support this deal.
Hilary Clinton's legislation only targets port operations by companies owned by a foreign government. Unless Emily is claiming that foreign governments run the operations of 80% of our ports, she is misrepresenting the facts, either deliberately because she is for the port deal, or mistakenly out of shoddy journalism. Care to clarify, Emily, or would you rather your unfair misrepresentation of the Clinton-Menendez legislation stay as is?

Posted by: ErrinF | February 27, 2006 05:25 PM

Emily also forgets to mention that 'private objections' standing in the way of this port deal include the Port Authority Of New York and New Jersey legally trying to block their ports being involved with the deal. And that's just the tip of the iceberg...
One other thing: While Emily accuses the Democrats of politicking this issue (which I won't deny, as of course politicians will politicize an issue), she fails to take into account that most of the ports that will be effected by this port deal occur in 'blue states'. The backwater 'red states' are not as effected by this as much as the more metropolitan areas (i.e richer) are. So, while I'm sure all politicians are getting an earful from their constituents about this port deal, the Democratic politicians that represent the states and districts most directly effected by this port deal are probably getting the most pressure to quash this way out and wrong port deal. Another thing: If Hilary and the Dems are using this issue to gain political points, so are the GOP politicians that also oppose this.
The simple truth is that Emily wants to discredit her opposition on this port deal, only she's doing so in a way that is blind to many of the realities surrounding all this. Her baseless cries of xenophobia didn't work, so now she's trying a new tact to portray all opposition to the deal as illegitimate. Thing is, a lot of us have very valid reasons to oppose the port deal, and Emily only illegitimizes herself when she tries these cheap tactics.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 27, 2006 05:41 PM

Only a fool or political hack would buy the notion that DPW 'volunteered' to request a 45 day review/delay. It's the only way out between Bush and the Congress GOP after their macho initial stand. Look for other DPW initiated moves if the polls on this issue don't budge or keep going south. Such as calling off the deal due to finiancial backings falling apart. Or failure to acquire adequate insurance. Or the deal becoming a distraction/liability to its daily operations. Etc. Etc. This issue will be decided by Karl Rove based solely on the 2006 election polls.

Posted by: Emily! Emily! | February 27, 2006 06:11 PM

"she fails to take into account that most of the ports that will be effected by this port deal occur in 'blue states'..."


That's just cursory observation. Take the port of New Orleans - these poor folks! What would happen if that port is blown up? What happened after Katrina? Except it would be even bigger and lasts longer this time? What would happen to gas price? What would happen to the entire Midwest/Central Plain commerce if the gulf entrance to the Miss river is blocked for a long period?

Posted by: Blue Port? | February 27, 2006 06:29 PM

Emily, other than the idiotic Patriot Act, the Senate has shown more spine than the House with regards to rushing into lockstep boot-licking legislation. There is not much I trust in our government right now, but I would be greatly surprised to see port legislation come out of the Senate right now that would bring instant death and destruction to our national economy whether Hillary or W or anyone else is President. You're being a bit uncharacteristically hysterical here.

Well, on second thought maybe I'll reserve judgement on that till the making the tax cuts permanent legislation comes around and see whose interests the Senate is serving.

The port operator develops the plan to secure the perimeter and files it with the Coast Guard. The port operator hires and fires the security guards who are responsible for guarding the port area itself, keeping out theives and saboteurs. Customs is responsible for making sure the actual cargo is safe to enter the US - seals intact, no radiation, etc.

So what does the Coast Guard think of this deal? I wish I knew. I read this but in typical BA fashion enough of it is classified to hide the conclusions: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/national/AP-Ports-Security.html?hp&ex=1141102800&en=d2d547c13870c528&ei=5094&partner=homepage

But Collins has been a fairly rational person. I want to hear more of what she, not Hillary or W, has to say.

Posted by: patriot1957 | February 27, 2006 07:01 PM

Bravo Eric Yendall!

"Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public". P.T.Barnum.

Eric - "And all this xenophobic, ignorant, simple-minded, uninformed, racist, paranoid bullshit over a port management company further proves the point.

I cringe."

Posted by: Eric Yendall

=============================
Poor ErrinF, so into her Lefty hysterical Bush-Hitler hatred she hasn't even noticed her fellow hysterics at Moveon.org and Democratic Underground as well as the Kos Kids are changing their Party Line talking points.

=================
Remember how manic ErrinF got with the Cheney hunting "crime"?

Or, more appropriately, other than the jokes, does anyone remember any scandal?

Or any of the other Koran-flushing bogus scandals du jour that only Lefty media and sad Lefty partisans with no life care about??

The Dubai Ports World is just another attempt by desperate Lefties to hyperinflate yet another mundane event into something that they are convinced could bring the Bush-Hitler down as sure as in the pinnacle of the Lefty Glory Days, Watergate took down Nixon.

Of course, Lefties like Errin were joined by a whole bunch of "xenophobic, ignorant, simple-minded, uninformed, racist, paranoid bullshit-happy" dumbass Republicans supplementing the usual stupid America-hating Lefty Democrats.

============================

Emily showed good journalist instinct in thinking this was going to be less of a big deal than the xenophobic, Muslim-hating, and quite ignorant polticians and American public made it out to be.

As Emily said, the DPW press statement is quite important. It says that they will have local American security managers running their terminal's security here, and all hiring and management decisions will be under the control of the DPW Int'l CEO who is a Brit.

Her link to the NYTimes story, which is also ignorance-dispelling, was quite helpful, and I'll add the Chertoff-Snow letter link:

http://washingtontimes.com/op-ed/20060226-092923-9278r.htm

=========================
Of course, we never know what the next "scandal" will be for "Excitable Errin"....Will she and her Lefty ilk at Moveon.org go Arab-hating racist, or do another 180 and return to obsessing over terrorist civil liberties and enemy rights? We just know that it is whatever position the Lefty Party Line believes at the moment is most damaging to the President.

That is what it has all come down to with the Pathetic Left. They now stand for nothing, have no values - just blind Bush hatred - so all their pretended stances and values are just tactical, changing by the day if they imagine partisan advantage can be extracted.

They will gladly become xenophobic bigots and racists if Bush is on the other side of the issue and will gladly become multi-culti, Radical Muslim lovers if Bush in on the other side of another issue...If Bush hated hunting, they would be pro-hunting.

.

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 27, 2006 07:17 PM

Ya, Emily is aware of the political game Hilary Clinton is playing, but is completely blind to the game the Bush administration is playing. Here's an excerpt from Dan Froomkin's recent piece about the controversy:

"The president's national security adviser, Stephen Hadley, said as late as Friday that the administration would not reconsider its approval. . . .
"But behind the scenes, the administration took part in discussions that would give the administration a way to save face. If the company was taking the initiative and would submit to further review, the hope was that congressional critics would be quieted and the president would not have to take on a fight with a well-positioned Congress or appear that he was giving in to their demands."

Emily probably really thinks this 45 day review is a 'chance to cool down'. It is not; It is a chance to backout slowly but surely from a bad political situation. No 45 day review is going to change the most important factor in this port deal as far as politicians are concerned, and that is the political consequences of this port deal going through. The GOP is probably going to lose control of both houses of Congress this election year, but that 'probably' becoms 'definitely' if this port deal goes through.
Where is the veto showdown George Bush threatened only days ago? Non-existant now, as the administration spent this weekend formulating a way to avoid direct confrontation rather than sticking to their guns and fighting it out. What a shock, politicians putting on one face publicly while privately behaving in a completely different way.
Here's the situation: The incompetent White House didn't realize what a controversy they were stepping into with this, and now that they do, they can't just quit, else Bush's lame duck status will be confirmed. Besides, the president flip-flopped on national security with this port issue, and he can't just flip-flop back and oppose it, as he will undoubtedly draw comparisons to John 'I actually voted for it before I voted against it' Kerry. So, the White House is playing the age old political game of putting on a winning face while knowing it will lose if it doesn't break free of this issue.
Actions speak louder than words, especially when dealing with politicians. Taking a politician at face value is the height of stupidity and gullibility. I guess I need to start applying the same tough standard to journalists, as Emily has been a bit of a politician herself with the manipulative, contrarian way she's handled this port affair.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 27, 2006 07:25 PM

Yeah patriot, I like Collins too. She reminds me of that school teacher we all have had as kids who was able to take control of out of control situations.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | February 27, 2006 07:30 PM

Remember how manic ErrinF got with the Cheney hunting "crime"?
Posted by: Chris Ford | Feb 27, 2006 7:17:44 PM

Thanks for the opportunity to expose you as a liar, Chris Ford. I challenge you to put forth a single post of mine concerning the Debate blogs about the Cheney incident that was in anyway 'manic' as you charge (without proof). I barely partook in that debate, and my position was the following from the get-go:

"I think I'll take a pass on mocking the accidental shooting of another human being. For one, the man who was shot was seriously wounded, and could have died; I don't find that humorous. For another, Dick Cheney nearly killed somebody by accident, and one would expect that he is not taking such an incident lightly; I realize he's hardly 'Mr. Sensitivity' but that doesn't excuse callously mocking him or being insensitive to what he's going through. To make light of the situation is unfair to both the vice-president and the 78 year old man he accidentally shot. People and the press who want to behave like superficial children in regards to this matter are going to do just that, but I for one am going to refrain from acting so petty and immature in response to the VP's hunting accident."
Posted by: ErrinF | Feb 13, 2006 10:26:11 PM

Here is the link to both those blogs:

http://blogs.washingtonpost.com/thedebate/2006/02/libby_says_chen.html#comments

http://blogs.washingtonpost.com/thedebate/2006/02/drafting_cheney.html#comments

A rudimentary search (try using the ''Find' function of your browser to search for the word 'ErrinF' on those blog pages) will show that I only posted ONCE, and it was the post I just included here that shows that I clearly took a pass on the Cheney feeding frenzy, not even engaging in Emily's second blog about the matter.
So, tell me again, Chris Ford, how we should all remember my manic behavior during the Cheney debate. One post on my part saying I'll take a pass on going after Cheney hardly constitutes 'manic'; Quite the opposite (Your long, blathering rants about the Phantom Lefty Menace are a much better example of manic behavior).
Like I said before, Chris, you are fupid. Fupid is as fupid does, and you are as fupid as they come. Even your lies are fupid. Have you put two and two together yet to figure out what two words combine to make up 'fupid'? Oh wait, you think 2+2=5, so I better give you a hint: It's kind of the same thing as 'fugly', another word that describes you to a T. As always, thanks for the laughs, loser. I needn't say anything more than that, as anything you post is much more damaging to your legitimacy as a debater than what I point out. I'll just sit back and let your fupidity do the rest. : )

Posted by: ErrinF | February 27, 2006 07:51 PM

But Collins has been a fairly rational person. I want to hear more of what she, not Hillary or W, has to say.
Posted by: patriot1957 | Feb 27, 2006 7:01:53 PM

I believe Senator Collins elaborated on her views on the matter during the recent ports deal briefing to the Senate Armed Forces Committee, which you can see over at www.c-span.org, unless I am mistaken and she was not there during the briefing (she's on the committee, though, so I think she was there). Being that Hilary Clinton is the senator of one of the states effected by the port deal, I think her position is apt and justified, despite what people might think of her personally. I hope the legislation she introduces with Senator Menendez of New Jersey becomes law, and that no foreign GOVERNMENT (got it yet, Emily?) will run our major port operations from now on.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 27, 2006 08:16 PM

I would think the real solution would be to spend the moeny to improve Port Security.

But that would ignore the fact that globalization in its current form (MONEY BEING THE SOLO VALUE IN COMMON) violates the basic tenants of the Nation State BECAUSE all rights afforded to Citizens of free Nations are not afforded to the people (not citizens) of the third world and other worlds like in the UAE. And thus Globalization in its present form takes from the Ciitzens of the free nations and gives to the oppressors. All for money.

In that respect, and what everyone is failing to recognize is that we have properly recognized that man has certain Inalienable Rights (which should apply to all living things?) which include the right to LIFE (war in all its form is wrong, but more that that, you cannot kill me to make your living, you cannot destroy my habitate to just earn money), the right to LIBERTY (I can choice for myself what I want to do, I don't have to be a child soldier or do as I please with my one and only life) and a right to the pursue of happiness (a tolerant society to permit free worship for all peoples regardless of their heritage or believes.)

This should apply to people in Dufar. People on islands. On the Seregety. (You get the idea). All peoples currently on the earth should be granted these rights in situ.

Then we can proceed.

But it should be fair.

The people in the third world get fundamental human rights to treated like people instead of animals and the people in the industrial nations get to keep their jobs and their way of life.

Posted by: Impeach Bush | February 27, 2006 08:22 PM

I think debater Impeach Bush mistakenly mentioned Darfur when s/he meant Dubai.
But that was the only mistake in that post, as the rest of it was totally on the money, especially in that it recognizes this port deal scandal is fundamentally about patriotic American values, not xenophobia. Beyond the politics of fear in recent years, Americans have ALWAYS been against monarchs, dictatorships, and communism. OF COURSE we are going to object to this UAE deal, as it puts us in the hands of Emirs who do not recognize the inalienable rights we do. The one thing I liked about the neocons is that they were supposedly aggressive about spreading freedom throughout the world, allowing others to share in the rights we know they deserve. But now we see that Bush is being selective with who deserves to share in our freedoms. Why exactly do the Iraqis deserve democracy and freedom but the non-royal citizens of the UAE don't? Sure, Saddam offerred an opportunity where others didn't, but that doesn't change the fact that a double standard is being applied here.
Ya know, I think there is room for compromise in this port deal after all. If the emirates of the UAE agree to adopt a constitutional government identical to that of the United States of America, we should let this port deal go through. Otherwise, no dice.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 27, 2006 10:04 PM

Yeap and with a Bill of Rights and all our Amendments to the Constitution as long as Scalia doesn't get a hold of them.

Posted by: Impeach Bush | February 27, 2006 10:14 PM

Ahhhh, I see more downsides to scotching this transfer of lease from one foreign company to another...big downsides.

1. From the inception of civil air international cargo service, the US was signatory to international aviation law permitting lease of air terminal space in foreign companies for storage of cargo until it was transshipped or delivered to a domestic freight forwarder under "cabotage" law. During this approximately 80 year period, most overseas airlines bringing cargo into or over the USA have been state-owned foreign carriers.

US air cargo firms like UPS, Fedex, and the airlines big in the cargo business have benefited from reciprocity in overseas terminals in building their global business. Denial of foreign air firms to bring cargo in would likely result in suspension of US carriers overseas priviledges, and cut the US airports out of transshipment business which would go to Canada, Mexico.

The defiance of international law under the WTO and Civil Air Agreements would cause sanctions.

2. The excuse being offered that this isn't about racism and Muslim xenophobia but HIllary's lipstick on a pig about "state ownership" sounds a little thin when what the politicians are saying in front of the cameras is "Arabs, 9/11, two hijackers were citizens of the UAE, terrorists did things in the UAE....." And the Clintons had no problem leasing to state-owned Chinese, Singaporean, Korean, and part-state owned Japanese operators in the 90s - while Congress never said a peep. And the hijackers were trained in US flight schools, befriended by US citizens, used US banks and phones, and flew practice flights on US carriers..

3. The Times points out another big difficulty in that DPW and P&O concluded a completely legal transaction under British financial law with no existing US securities or federal law barring acquisition of US assets. The transaction was completed and approved by shareholders of both countries. International financial markets expect rules to be honored. If the US changes the rules after the fact, billions in damages may be pursued in WTO litigation, in British courts, and American access to international financial markets may be damaged. (The anti-UAE hysterics are now talking about screwing Chinese asets, Japanese assets, French assets, Singaporean assets to "be consistent" about how dangerous "state-owned" assets of friendly countries are...)

4. The UAE is a member of OPEC. If the other Muslim members conclude this is a case of America spitting in their faces, they may try a 3 to 5 dollar per barrel surcharge that just applies to America for the "loss of honor and reputation". Of course the US can always appeal to our non-Muslim oil exporting friends in OPEC like Venezuela to mollify the Arabs?

5. If we are not satisified pissing those friends off with our xenophobia, we can not only go on to destroy American air carriers global business, and financial market access...we can also look at other critical industries and stick it to other countries that have gas, chemical plants, drug research, pharma production, nuclear business here, many state-owned, like Framatome which does nuclear reactor refuelings here. Or German BASF, a company partially owned by the state of Bavaria and the German civil employees State pension plan.

I suppose the good news is that if all comparable US businesses lose reciprocity and have to abandon overseas biz if ignorance wins out, Halliburton gets all the US airport terminal business, Monsato all the chem plants.

============================
If politicians are looking for new industries where they wish to deter foreign investment and send it to China instead, a list of industries with % foreign-owned:

http://www.economyincrisis.org/congress/foreignownedind.asp

===========================
ErrinF - Your "concern" about Cheney was mainly to express your position "how serious it was". If the guy hadn't publicly blessed Cheney off or he had died, I have no doubt you would be calling for Cheney's resignation or manslaughter/cover-up trial - or both. Your out of control rage at Bush and Cheney is obvious...

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 28, 2006 12:27 AM

An emir is a dictator, and an emirate is a dictatorship. I doubt if our 'greatest generation' fought World War 2 so that some dictator can run our port operations. I doubt if the Founding Fathers fought the Revolutionary War so that a king could once again claim our ports.
This port deal is a business venture for the UAE. They wouldn't spend billions on it if they didn't plan on profitting from it. I'll be damned if some repressive regime profits off of running our ports. Not that this port deal has a snowball's chance in hell of going through, but if it did, the money made from it might be spent in repressive ways back in the UAE. True, the terrorists are murderous bastards and we need to be wary of them most, but that doesn't make these UAE dictators the guys-in-white.
I look forward to the next 45 days of the UAE being put through the ringer. They don't know what's about to hit them... basically, our journalists and media will declare open season on them now, and will go overboard looking for any story that may cause even more controversy or outrage. Trust me, they'll find something that will be a major public relations blow to UAE's already damaged image in America. Also, the UAE doesn't seem to realize that they are a political issue now in America, and will now be part of the political cycle. If you think having a hoard of journalists putting you under the microscope is rough, that's nothing compared to what the politicians and the late night comedians are going to do with the UAE's standing in the US. Mark my words: The UAE is about to get a lesson in American culture and how we do things, and it's going to be a lesson in hard knocks. I'd pity them, that is, if they weren't dictators.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 01:18 AM

After 9-11 the US went on a mad quest to "follow the money". One of the places the hot trail led to was the UAE. Where it stopped dead in its tracks. Because they wouldn't cooperate in tracing the money that flowed through their government and their citizens and their banks into the pockets of Binnie and his friends.

Now, President "Remember 9-11" says we should flush even more American cash into their government coffers, where we suspect (but can't prove, since they block us from doing so), that some of it will be funneled to terrorists. That is state sponsored terrorism. If you are Iran it gets you into the Axis of Evil. If you are in bed with the Bush family it gets your detractors labelled xenophobic.

Remember 9-11! Stop American funding of terrorists!

Posted by: pig in a poke | February 28, 2006 01:18 AM

Chris Ford calling others xenophobic?

ROTFLMAO.

Gotta go just peed my pants.

Posted by: | February 28, 2006 01:32 AM

Chris Ford, you are so damn fupid it's not funny. If my rage against Cheney and Bush is so out of control, then why did it not manifest itself in the Cheney hunting accident debates? Out of control means it gets the better of me, you know, like your Lefty obsession gets the better of you constantly. If you had the ability to see the obvious, Ford, you'd see that I obviously have no rage against Bush or Cheney, certainly not to the level of 'out of control'. But extremists like you can't relate to other people NOT being a twisted extremist like you are. You project your lack of control on to others.
Well, at least Chris Ford admitted that he completely made up me being manic about Cheney's hunting accident. He suddenly shifted from 'remember how manic ErrinF was?' to 'if this and that would have happenned, ErrinF would have done this'. Ya, Chris Ford, and if you weren't so damn fupid you wouldn't make up baseless accusations that you can only back up with 'ifs' instead of real proof. But you're as fupid as can be, Ford; No 'ifs', 'ands', or 'buts' about it.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 01:41 AM

LOL, anonymous pants pee-er! My guess is you were laughing too hard at the fupidity of Chris Ford to type your handle.
One thing that gets a chuckle out of me is that Chris Ford is arguing so vehemently for a STATE-RAN business to run our port operations. That witchhunting blockhead Chris Ford is constantly accusing everybody he can of being subversive Marxists, and yet here he is giving a de facto thumbs-up to a government-ran company. Right wing conservatives are supposed to be for limited government and believe that the less things the state runs, the better. And yet here is commie symp Chris Ford saying just the opposite. The moron hates the left, and yet he is taking a leftist position on this port deal. See what I mean by 'fupid'?

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 02:05 AM

It just gets thicker:

The Clinton Administration approved the leases of 9 terminals to the National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia in 1997. Smarmy Chuck Schumer kept his mouth shut and Hillary was unaware...she was baking cookies.

Oh, NSCSA is owned by the Saudi government and royal family members, with a minority interest by other Saudi companies. Link:

http://www.nscsaamerica.com/profile.htm#NSCSA Value Added Servic es

It has nothing to do with security. It is all about Bush-hatred and raw naked bigotry & xenophobia of certain US allies.

Now a chance for the Dems to try and spit in the face of Saudi Arabia as well as the UAE and see if they dare start an oil embargo or just cut back production and jack oil to 90 a barrel.

And the Lefties in Clinton's day dismissed concern about China taking control of all the Panama Canal Port facilities in 1999 as "silly".

Can't wait to see the shit the racist zenophobic ignorant idiots of the far Left and Right will land us in unless they back off.

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 28, 2006 02:42 AM

Can't wait to see the shit the racist zenophobic ignorant idiots of the far Left and Right will land us in unless they back off.
Posted by: Chris Ford | Feb 28, 2006 2:42:19 AM

Who are you, and what have you done with the real Chris Ford?

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 04:07 AM

Posted by: CHE | February 28, 2006 04:12 AM

Here's a very recent article detailing the political consequences of the Bush Administration supporting this port deal:

"BUSH JOB RATING FALLS TO ALL-TIME LOW IN POLL"

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President George W. Bush's job rating has fallen to an all-time low of 34 percent, amid strong opposition to the Dubai Ports World deal and increasing pessimism over the war in Iraq, according to a CBS News poll released on Monday.
Bush's overall job approval fell eight points from 42 percent last month. Fifty-nine percent of respondents said they disapproved of Bush's performance on the job, the poll found.
Bush's previous low job approval rating of 35 percent came last October, a month after Hurricane Katrina laid waste to the Gulf Coast and shortly after the U.S. death toll in Iraq reached the 2,000 mark, CBS said.
Long among his strongest suits, ratings for Bush's handling of Iraq fell to a new low of 30 percent, down from 37 percent in January, the poll found.
In addition, 62 percent of Americans said they think U.S. efforts to bring stability and order to Iraq were going badly compared with 36 percent who said things were going well.
In recent days, the Bush administration has faced increasing sectarian violence and fears of civil war in Iraq as well as strong bipartisan congressional opposition to a deal allowing an Arab state-owned company to operate six key U.S. ports.
According to the poll, 70 percent believe the Dubai Ports World transaction should not be allowed to go through while only 21 percent did not see the ports deal as a problem.
One surprising bright spot for the administration in the polls was that Americans appeared ready to move on after Vice President Dick Cheney's hunting accident. Seventy-six percent said it was understandable that the accident could happen.
However media coverage of the accident may have made the public's generally negative view of Cheney a bit more so, CBS said. The poll found that 46 percent hold a negative view of Cheney and 18 percent hold a favorable view, down from a 23 percent favorable rating in January.
The telephone poll of 1,018 adults was conducted February 22-26 and had a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 04:21 AM

PLEASE BOOKMARK THE FOLLOWING SITES;
WWW.ONLINEJOURNAL.COM
WWW.TAKINGAIM.INFO
WWW.WSWS.ORG

The gang that couldn't shoot straight

By Jerry Mazza

It's not just Cheney, the Gang Vice-Capo, who can't shoot straight, sweeping his rifle to the right and down, following a covey of quail, and shooting instead his "friend" Harry Whittington with a chest, neck and face full of birdshot.

How straight a shooter was Katherine Armstrong, hostess of the hunting event on her 50,000-acre Texas ranch, who swore the ritual was absolutely alcohol-free, solo Dr. Pepper, while Cheney later confessed he'd had "a beer" for lunch, just one, no more; right, Dick, the check is in the mail.

And how straight-shooting was the White House that tried to ignore the story until hours after it was broken by Ms. Armstrong to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times as opposed to, say, the Washington Post, New York Times, LA Times, Chicago Tribune, or any other of America's major papers? People might want to know if the VP was shooting people.

And how straight a shooter was Scott McClellan when he first told America that President Bush had been notified of the shooting an hour after it happened, at 8 PM that Sunday night, when in fact the event occurred at 5:30 PM that Sunday, according to Ms Armstrong.

But the white and darker lies, the obfuscation, the illegalities, Cheney not having an upland hunting stamp, violating the hunter's code to hold fire in a situation like that, to avoid all alcohol while hunting, are the tip of the iceberg for The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight.

The title in fact is borrowed from Jimmy Breslin's novel about a whacked and whacking Mafia family and their gang that are as stupid and incompetent as they are brutally violent. In the book and movie made from it with Robert DeNiro, it's all darkly funny.

In real life, it's not so funny. It's a roaring pain in the head to know this gang sits at the helm of the not so free world, pointing missiles today at Iran, bunker busters yesterday at Iraq, and an Army at Afghanistan, managing to miss Osama bin Laden, the so-called 9/11 perp, but level what remained of the country.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Enron, #1 Bush Contributor

And speaking of The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight, these past weeks we've been introduced to the Enron trial and fellow Bush gang members, Kenny Boy Lay and Jeffrey Skilling, who couldn't be straight shooters about their earnings, on and off the books, including shell companies used for hiding monies or, when often empty, being declared as assets or liabilities for earnings or tax reasons, as the Cayman Island winds blew.

Their lack of straight-shooting practically bankrupted the state of California with energy price gouging in 2001. Then too, the Enron plunge to bankruptcy took with it, like the Titanic, thousands of innocents, employees, their retirement plans and jobs. This while Kenny and fellow sharks sold off huge amounts of private stock, hyping prices with inflated earnings reports to Wall Street, fully knowing the stock would tank. It would seem Bush's largest campaign contributor was a paradigm of corporate crookedness.

Lastly, Enron's White House meetings with Bush and Cheney in April 2001, discussing the California crisis, have still not been fully explained, in defiance of congressional demands for full disclosure. What are they hiding, still?

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Iraq

Our Capo de Capos, President Bush, Vice-Capo Cheney, Consigliare Rove, Capo of State Rice, Capos Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld and Powell, and Solders and Button Men Feith, Libby, Armitage, et al, definitely could not, would not shoot straight about Iraq and Weapons of Mass Destruction. The lies were pounded like drums that Saddam had tried to buy yellow-cake uranium from Niger; that Saddam was about to use these non-existent weapons, and that we must attack him alone, unilaterally, preemptively, immediately in order to survive.

In fact, how straight a shooter was Scooter Libby, who outed Valerie Plame as a CIA covert agent because her hubby, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, outed the yellow-cake uranium from Niger myth as a complete lie? Though now it seems the word to leak Plame's identity came down from Libby's Capo, Cheney.

And so, after dragging us into the war, and declaring it over on May 1, 2003, could they shoot straight about what it took to really win or bring about a durable peace?

No. Undermanned, under-planned, undermined by a rush to kill, maim and grasp Iraqi's oil, we were brought to the present disaster, Iraq today: thousands of American soldiers killed, untold thousands of Iraqis, mostly civilians, killed, and the conflagration raging, even after a bogus election to simulate a virtual democracy, which is as stable as the levees of New Orleans, another disaster in which no one could shoot straight, talk straight, act straight, to prevent the destruction of a great American city and the copious loss of lives of its citizens, black and white.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About New Orleans or 9/11

Speaking of New Orleans, let us go back to that other domestic disaster of 9/11. It's amazing how no one could shoot straight that day, how hordes of American military fighters were not available to stop the airliner-missiles from smacking the World Trade Center or the Pentagon.

Yet now we can see clearly in DVDs like loosechange.com the Towers' explosions occurring at their tops and moving downwards followed by massive explosions at the bases of Towers One and Two. The combinations of explosions brought each tower down in 10 seconds -- free fall at the speed of gravity.

That's truth, not the myth that redundant steel-frame buildings "melted" from jet fuel fires, which burned away in minutes. The heat and time a melt would take was far beyond the half-an-hour and hour-and-a-half before the South then North Towers fell.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Tower 7

And we are told Tower 7 was "pulled" eight hours later; demolished at the behest of owner, WTC lessee Larry Silverstein. In fact, the-no-straight-shooter Silverstein neglected to mention it takes weeks, sometimes months, to set up a building that size for demolition. So Capo Larry, when are you going to take the billions you made on your Towers' insurance, which benefits you ratcheted up only a month before 9/11, and when are you actually going to build something? C'mon, Larry, try to be a straight-shooter just once.

Couldn't Shoot Straight about the Pentagon Hit

But perhaps that's all history, like the missile that hit the Pentagon, not a 757, because no 757 fuselage was found, no 124-foot wide wings, 40-foot high tail, or massive engines found. Only an 18-foot wide entrance hole, and an eight-foot wide exit hole from ring C. Oh yes, and a rotor from an Allyson Turbofan jet engine, much smaller, used for the Global Hawk craft that carried the missile that exploded on impact right through three rings of the Pentagon. What's more, actual video tapes recordings of the hit from a nearby gas station and hotel, were seized by the FBI and never shown. Shoot straight, guys. Show them.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Flight 93

You've probably heard it all, including the chestnut from that loosechange.com DVD that Flight F 93 did not crash or get blown up over or in the fields of southern Pennsylvania (even as I thought originally) but landed in a Cleveland airport and its passengers were evacuated to a nearby NASA center. So it goes, truth is stranger than fiction.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Superhighways From Mexico To US

Also, let me give you major pieces of new news about The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight and what they're up to. Two NAFTA Corridors Will Be Off-shoring Transportation Jobs to Mexico. This startling info comes from a story by straight-shooter Richard Vogel in the Monthly Review. You have to read this linked tale. Basically, the plan is to build two NAFTA Superhighways with side-by-side rail lines, converging and crossing the international border at Laredo/Nuevo Laredo:

Although I-5 and I-15 originating in Tijuana and serving the western states, I-19 connecting Nogales and Tucson, and I-10 that serves Ciudad Juárez/El Paso and provides an essential east-west link in the system, are all important NAFTA highways --the two priority segments of the NAFTA corridor system in the United States are the I-35 Corridor and the proposed I-69 Corridor both of which will originate in Laredo and carry NAFTA freight all the way to the American Midwest. When the I-35 Corridor is completed it will extend 1,600 miles north to the U.S./Canada border. Along the route it will serve San Antonio, Austin, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Oklahoma City, Wichita, Kansas City, Des Moines, Minneapolis/St. Paul, and Duluth. The proposed I-69 Corridor will also originate in Laredo but will head northeast, serving Houston, Texarkana, Memphis, Evansville, Indianapolis, and Lansing to the U.S./Canada border at Port Huron, a total of approximately 2,100 miles. Promoters of the NAFTA corridors tout the system as the largest engineering project ever undertaken in U.S. history. What they fail to publicize, however, are the economic costs of the system and how the massive project will alter the landscape and environment of America forever. These undeclared consequences, however, will be calamitous . . . [Be patient, read on]

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Land Consumption

The NAFTA corridors will be up to 1,200 feet wide with separate lanes for passenger vehicles (three in each direction) sandwiched between truck lanes (two in each direction). The corridors will also contain six rail lines (three in each direction): two tracks for high-speed passenger rail, two for commuter rail, and two for freight. The third component of the corridor will be a 200-foot-wide utility zone. To accommodate the railways and underground utilities, the corridors will run at grade level and will require extensive bridging at crossovers and intersections. The current estimate is that a typical corridor section will require 146 acres of right-of-way per mile, making the anticipated land consumption for the NAFTA corridors 584,000 acres in Texas alone (For a detailed critique of the Trans Texas Corridor Plan see corridorwatch.org). Total land consumption in the United States for the NAFTA corridors could exceed 1 million acres. Since the corridors are going to be routed through rural areas, this means they will consume a total area of agricultural land and open spaces almost as large as the land area of the state of Vermont.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Outsourcing Transportation Jobs

Also, the two superhighways and rail system are designed to break the back of organized labor in the containerization and trucking industries located in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The idea is to get Mexican drivers, loaders, et al, at the lowest prices in high unemployment areas of Mexico to take the "off-shored" jobs of Americans, delivering the China-and-other-bottom-cost-nations' goods to Wal-Mart, Costco and others' distribution centers in America. So goods would come from the container ports in Mexico to retail outlets across the US.

Not only is the real estate it takes to build these two passages enormous, so too is the enormity of pollution, noise, and general damage to the American as well as Mexican environments. Both cultures will be screwed but the Corporatos will profit. Have you heard any straight talk about this from the Capo de Capos or the Gang? Nada, senores, signoras et senoritas.

Couldn't Shoot Straight About Dubai Managing American Ports

Big capital and the Big Gang are already working on offering up six major US ports to a Dubai management firm with at least two ties to the White House where the City Never Sleeps, Citi-Bank's old theme line.

Reported by Michael McAuliffe in the good old New York Daily News on February 21, the White House links are one to "Treasury Secretary John Snow, whose agency heads the federal panel that signed off on the $6.8 billion sale of an English company to government-owned Dubai Ports World -- giving it control of Manhattan's cruise ship terminal and Newark's container port.

"Snow was chairman of the CSX rail firm that sold its own international port operations to DP World for $1.15 billion in 2004, the year after Snow left for Bush's cabinet.

"The other connection is David Sanborn, who runs DP World's European and Latin American operations and was tapped by Bush last month to head the U.S. Maritime Administration . . .

"The more you look at this deal, the more the deal is called into question," said Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), who said the deal was rubber-stamped in advance -- even before DP World formally agreed to buy London's P&O port company.

Besides operations in New York and Jersey, Dubai would also run port facilities in Philadelphia, New Orleans, Baltimore and Miami . . ."

Okay, so there's no straight-shooting there. They're outsourcing management of five American major ports? Why? Aren't we smart enough to do it ourselves?

Couldn't Shoot Straight About DU Killing US Soldiers

And here's a biggy, folks, that The Gang Who Couldn't Shoot Straight, extending back to Don GHW Bush and fellow mobsters couldn't be straight about . . . From the Free Market News and Rense comes a major bomb about the use of depleted uranium and its effects on our soldiers in the first Gulf War: DU Scandal Explodes - Horrendous US Casualties. Here's just a shocking snippet from it:

But due to the use of depleted uranium in the battlefield, 56 percent of the 580,400 solders that served in the first Gulf War were on Permanent Medical Disability by 2000. 11,000 Gulf War veterans are already dead. Now 518,739 Gulf War Veterans, almost all of them, are currently on medical disability.

And on and on it goes. I guess they figure, what you don't know won't hurt you. And what they make up will be good for you. That's the ethic in a handful of words. From the Gang That Just Couldn't, Wouldn't, Never Ever, Shoot Straight. All the more reason for you to get it straight and shoot straight, from here and at every other site still telling the truth, before they start to disappear, like certain reporters, thanks to certain people. Consider my advice, as Don Corleone would say, "An offer you can't refuse."
Jerry Mazza is a freelance writer living in New York. Reach him at gvmaz@verizon.net.

Copyright © 1998-2006 Online Journal
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Posted by: CHE | February 28, 2006 04:33 AM

> Chris Ford

Other than name calling I have no clue what Chris Ford stands for other than his childish name calling. Who are you and what do you believe in? Not much other than name calling I would hazzard to guess.

Posted by: SpeakoutforDemocracy | February 28, 2006 07:21 AM

The real issue here is crony capitalism at its worst. I don't think anyone should calm down about the President's brother Neil Bush and his involvement. That's the real reason this Administration wanted to circumvent any investigation. Of course the mainstream media would never pursue that.

http://www.intrepidliberaljournal.blogspot.com

Posted by: Intrepid Liberal | February 28, 2006 08:15 AM

So Chris Ford thinks we must give the UAE control of our ports otherwise they would jack up the price of oil? Or stop letting us use their port? Here in this country we call that BLACKMAIL schmuck! Sort of a terrorist's MO no?

Chris Ford is a terrorist weenie. HAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHAH!

BTW let's pull our 'base' from Dubai! Let's see who would love to 'rent' it from the emir? IRAN perhaps?

HAHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHA!

BTW BTW what happened to that in your face threat of veto? A prez at 34% approval shouldn't issue a veto threat yes?

HAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHHAHA!

Posted by: Chis Ford Schmis Ford! | February 28, 2006 08:20 AM

Well, now we are in a sorry pickle.

Bush has two choices.
1, twist arms behind closed doors and put lipstick on the pig and declare victory for democracy - you know, declare it will be secure because an American (one of his cronies) will be appointed by DPW as VP in charge of fleecing Americans, or require them to keep financial records in the country for seven seconds every twenty years so he can say the financing will be made transparent, etc. Hey, its working for the Patriot Act renewal, and domestic spying.
2. Do a Harriet Myers and entice UAE to withdraw the sale. The problem is, what will he be offering them behind closed doors to do this? That he will stand by and smile benevolently for another five years as mileage falls to even lower lows, promise to increase rebates for buying hummers but scotch the ones for buying hybrids, promise to veto any money for public transportation, quell all talk of decreasing oil dependency and increase our imports by another 5%? I fully expect him to sell us out for another 30 million peices of silver.

We'll be screwed if we do and screwed if we don't. How did it come to this?

Posted by: patriot 1957 | February 28, 2006 08:52 AM

Quite likely the primary effect of the extra delay and scrutiny of the U.S. ports component of the deal will be simply more time for domestic politics to turn sour.

Today's Presidential and VP poll numbers (historical lows) have got to be a catalyst for opponents to take this hung-up issue to very Gorey levels, and make the next 45 days the most excruciating in the current administration's experience.

The way to keep score will be to follow public statements of Republican members of Congress. It'll be a howl.

Posted by: On the plantation | February 28, 2006 09:06 AM

What we wonder is causing the Washington Post columnists to be so pro-Muslim using the word Xenophobic to imply that we hate foreigners. We don't hate foreigners we simply don't trust Muslim Fundamentalists who regard us as "Infidels". The issue is not Xenophobia but Islamophobia as it should be. Incidents in Europe clearly demonstrate that our concerns are valid no matter what a few Ivy League "intellectuals" may want us to believe. Perhaps we should look into how much muslim investments there are in the Post Corporation! It may explain a lot!

Posted by: Joe Roy | February 28, 2006 09:22 AM

Joe Roy,

This is the flip side of the mass hysteria these Post and some - not all - NYT columnists accuse the rest of us of. That's why you've got the defenders of our leader at all cost type like David Brooks and the let's be politically correct and be sensitive to Arab feeling type like Richard Cohen rushing headlong to the defense of this deal.

I doubt any of them have a clue of how port operation works in all its facets. Instead of calling for a timeout to conduct a thorough investigation of this deal based on legitimate security concerns they castigate the people for being hysteric or xenophobic.

Gut instincts would tell you regardless of whether DPW would control port security or not there are bound to be myriad security holes that can be exploited by any determined terrorists who want to take advantage of this deal. But these know-it-all experts in this administration and the press blithely dismiss our concerns.

After Iraq and Katrina we the people know better to take these experts at their word.

Trust but verify Reagan once said - who would have thought Ronnie would turn out to be infinitely wise compared to this bunch!

Posted by: Trust but Verify | February 28, 2006 10:00 AM

otherside123.blogspot.com
www.onlinejournal.com
www.takingaim.info
www.wsws.org

http://www.unknownnews.org/0602240223Florida2004.html

Florida voting machine logs show thousands of oddities in 2004 election

by Brian Skoloff, Associated Press

Feb. 23, 2006

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- An examination of Palm Beach County's electronic voting machine records from the 2004 election found possible tampering and tens of thousands of malfunctions and errors, a watchdog group said Thursday.

Bev Harris, founder of BlackBoxVoting.org, said the findings call into question the outcome of the presidential race. But county officials and the maker of the electronic voting machines strongly disputed that and took issue with the findings.

Voting problems would have had to have been widespread across the state to make a difference. President Bush won Florida -- and its 27 electoral votes -- by 381,000 votes in 2004. Overall, he defeated John Kerry by 286 to 252 electoral votes, with 270 needed for victory.

BlackBoxVoting.org, which describes itself as a nonpartisan, nonprofit citizens group, said it found 70,000 instances in Palm Beach County of cards getting stuck in the paperless ATM-like machines and that the computers logged about 100,000 errors, including memory failures.

Also, the hard drives crashed on some of the machines made by Oakland, Calif.-based Sequoia Voting Systems, some machines apparently had to be rebooted over and over, and 1,475 re-calibrations were performed on Election Day on more than 4,300 units, Harris said. Re-calibrations are done when a machine is malfunctioning, she said.

"I actually think there's enough votes in play in Florida that it's anybody's guess who actually won the presidential race," Harris added. "But with that said, there's no way to tell who the votes should have gone to."

Palm Beach County and other parts of the country switched to electronic equipment after the turbulent 2000 presidential election, when the county's butterfly ballot confused some voters and led them to cast their votes for third-party candidate Pat Buchanan instead of Al Gore. The Supreme Court halted a recount after 36 days and handed a 537-vote victory to Bush.

Palm Beach County election officials said the BlackBoxVoting.com findings are flawed, and they blamed most of the errors on voters not following proper procedures.

"Their results are noteworthy for consideration, but in a majority of instances they can be explained," said Arthur Anderson, the county's elections supervisor. "All of these circumstances are valid reasons for concern, but they do not on face value substantiate that the machines are not reliable."

Sequoia spokeswoman Michelle Shafer disputed the findings, saying the company's machines worked properly. Sequoia's machines are used in five Florida counties and in 21 states.

"There was a fine election in November 2004," Shafer said.

She said many of the errors in the computer logs could have resulted from voters improperly inserting their user cards into the machines. The remaining errors would not affect the vote results because each unit has a backup system, she said.

Jenny Nash, a spokeswoman for the Florida Department of State, which oversees elections, said she was not aware of the report and had no comment.

Harris said one machine showed that 112 votes were cast on Oct. 16, two days before the start of early voting, a possible sign of tampering. She said the group found evidence of tampering on more than 30 machines in the county.

However, Harris said it was impossible to determine what information was altered or if votes were shifted among candidates.

As originally published

Someone accessed 40 Palm Beach County voting machines Nov 2004

Press release, BlackBoxVoting,org

Feb. 23, 2006

The internal logs of at least 40 Sequoia touch-screen voting machines reveal that votes were time and date-stamped as cast two weeks before the election, sometimes in the middle of the night.

Black Box Voting successfully sued former Palm Beach County (FL) Supervisor of Elections Theresa LePore to get the audit records for the 2004 presidential election.

After investing over $7,000 and waiting nine months for the records, Black Box Voting discovered that the voting machine logs contained approximately 100,000 errors. According to voting machine assignment logs, Palm Beach County used 4,313 machines in the Nov. 2004 election. During election day, 1,475 voting system calibrations were performed while the polls were open, providing documentation to substantiate reports from citizens indicating the wrong candidate was selected when they tried to vote.

Another disturbing find was several dozen voting machines with votes for the Nov. 2, 2004 election cast on dates like Oct. 16, 15, 19, 13, 25, 28 2004 and one tape dated in 2010. These machines did not contain any votes date-stamped on Nov. 2, 2004.

You can find the complete set of raw voting machine event logs for Palm Beach County here: LINK. Note that some items were not provided to us and are ommitted from the logs.

The logs rule out the possibility that these were Logic & Accuracy (L&A) test results, and verified that these results did appear in the final totals. In addition to the date discrepancies, most had incorrect polling times, with votes appearing throughout the wee hours of the night. These machines were L&A tested, and the L&A test activities appeared in the logs with the correct date and time.

According to the voting machine assignment log, these machines were not assigned to early voting locations. The number of votes on each machine also corresponds with the numbers typical of polling place machines rather than early voting.

Many of these machines showed unexplained log activity after the L&A test but before Election Day. In addition, many more machines without date anomalies showed this log activity, which revealed someone powering up the machine, opening the program, then powering it down again. In one instance, the date discrepancy appeared when someone accessed the machine two minutes after the L&A test was completed.

Voting machines are computers, and computers have batteries that can cause date and time discrepancies, but it does not appear that these particular discrepancies could have been caused by battery problems.

The evidence indicates that someone accessed the computers after the L&A and before the election, and that this access caused a change in the machine's reporting functions, at least for date and time. Such access would take a high degree of inside access. It is not known whether any other changes were introduced into the voting machines at this time. As learned in the Hursti experiments, it is possible for an insider to access the machines and leave no trace, but sometimes a hasty or clumsy access (such as forgetting to enter a correct date/time value when altering a record) will leave telltale tracks.

For another example of time discrepancies, see the Volusia County poll tapes.

Approximately 4,000 votes were cast on these machines. The vote pattern and activity pattern appears to be identical to typical patterns found on Election Day -- All votes on the discrepant machines were spread over a 12-hour period, the length of time the Florida polls are open.

A member of the Palm Beach County electronic voting technical committee asked for the names of the technicians for Palm Beach who had access to the machines during that time, but the IT person, Jeff Darden, remained silent and never answered the question.

The Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections, Arthur Anderson, said that his staff had looked into the problem and that the votes were normal, it's just that the dates somehow changed.

* * *
Other anomalies (Anomaly info)

• "Card Stuck" error:

Occured at least 70,000 times.

The logs show that these cards were placed in the machine (which normally "swallows" the card like old-fashioned ATM machines, holding the card inside until the voting activites are complete, then ejecting it). The logs show that the card was authenticated, indicating that the machine believed the card was valid and had retrieved the appropriate ballot. Just before the vote was cast, the "card stuck" error appeared.

According to Michelle Shafer, who is now the spokesperson for Sequoia Voting Systems, a card stuck error stuck error appears "any time an activation card makes contact with the activator in the electronic voting unit and comes back out. This happens for the following reasons:

• A voter does not push the card all the way in so it comes back out

• A voter inserts the card again after having already used it to vote once...

• A voter inserts the card backwards

• The card actually gets stuck in the machine (not typical)

Previously, a Sequioa rep attributed the card stuck error to jiggling the card while it is inserted, however that doesn't seem to hold up since it would take a pair of tweezers and considerable manual dexterity to jiggle it.

As to putting the card in backwards or upside down, the message that normally appears is probably the "invalid card insertion" message. Because of the high number of these errors, and because no reports were produced indicating that any voters had reported the card popping out while they were trying to vote, Black Box Voting recommended to Palm Beach that testing should be done to replicate the error, making sure that the explanation holds water and that there is no adverse impact on the vote.

A member of the Committee asked whether a testing day could be set up, but Jeff Darden again sat silent, and despite some prodding, no such testing appears to be on the horizon.

• AC Power Off Incidents

Any of us who use computers know that it is not a good idea to yank the power from your machine while you are entering mission-critical data, especially without a backup. (The Palm Beach voting machines lack voter verified paper trails.)

Dozens of voting machines were turned off during the middle of the election while the polls were open. Machine # 6359 in precinct 1036 was powered down 128 times during the election.

Other power-related issues included "Main Battery not charging" and "backup battery too low".

• "Unknown event" messages

A handful of machines showed "unknown event" messages, apparently of different kinds. This is an interesting error message, since the FEC guidelines frown on undefined exceptions. What is the point of having an error message if you don't reveal anything about what the error is?

Machine number 5875 in Precinct 1077 showed two different "unknown errors," listing them as "unknown error 219" and "unknown error 220."

• auto-act election info bad and "auto-act write ver fail" messages

also show up in the logs, with the "election info bad" message appearing hundreds of times.

• Card encryption bad and Card read fail errors

also appeared, with the encryption error message the more frequent of the two.

• Polls closed and results report messages

would be expected to appear on every voting machine at the end of the voting cycle, but these revealed problems with poll worker training and procedures at the administrative/training level. Some logs reported one report printed, some two, three, four or five, and several not only had no results tape printed but showed no closing of the polls. (Closing the polls tells the voting machine not to accept any more votes).

• Simulation not sim task

was a message that offered no ready explanation, and another that left us wondering was the "Maint Official AT Report" error. Call a maintenance official? Maintain an official AT report?

• SyErr 23: RC/AT Verify and Sys Err 31: Vote Not Rec 1

imply a system error of some type, at least one of which would affect the vote.

• EEPROM failure

Now this is a message you don't want to see on a voting machine. It happened a couple dozen times. It is somewhat akin to seeing a "hard disk failure" message on your computer -- not a good thing at all if you are in the process of entering critical time-sensitive data.

The logs indicate that poll workers used significantly different operating procedures from one place to another. One of the least desirable actions some poll workers were taking was to perform multiple calibrations on the machines during the day, every few hours.

Hundreds of records were simply missing, not provided at all, making it impossible to complete a formal audit.

After meeting with the authorities to determine protocols about releasing the detailed report, Black Box Voting plans to publish a detail report giving full log details on the 40 machines accessed by an insider.

Sequoia machines -- locations

Sequoia touch-screens are also used in Pinellas County (FL), Riverside, San Bernardino and Santa Clara countis (CA), New Mexico, New Jersey, and formerly in Snohomish County (WA).

A sampling of Palm Beach precincts with votes appearing on wrong date/time

Precinct 3066 machine #8438
counted Oct. 15
Precinct 3068 machine #8490
counted Oct. 28
Precinct 3086 machine #8316
counted Oct 14
Precinct 2132 machine #7441
counted Oct. 15
Precinct 6006 machine #7914
counted Oct. 14
Precinct 6018 machine #7877
counted Oct. 14
Precinct 4068 machine #8997
counted Oct. 16
Precinct 5142 machine #9724
counted Oct 18
Precinct 2072 machine #6848
counted Oct. 15
Precinct 4140 machine #9289
counted Oct. 17
Precinct 4084 machine #8101
counted Oct. 17

Posted by: che | February 28, 2006 10:54 AM

Look Chris Ford, I do not pretend to have any particular insight into this port controversy but, I do understand the legitimate concerns of the American people given that the UAE has often been criticized for its laxity in oversight of the financial ties of the many of these Emirates to Islamic terrorism in general.

And, I flat out am mystified as to why so many of you on the right have had such an epiphany on such questions. After all, the very same people in the talk industry who are defending Bush on this question were daily raking the skin off Bill Clinton's buttocks back in the 90s when it was revealed that a Chinese company would be managing ports in California.

In the end, I suspect that this is just another indicator in the decline of American economic preeminence in the world as we move to a more globalized system of finance, politics and yes, even government. I can only hope that our role in America will be to ensure that this new global order of affairs is grounded in American Constitutional guarantees of liberty, free expression, self-determination and tolerance of other cultures and beliefs.

One thing seems certain: The direction we seem to be headed in does not bode well for this to be a New American Century. It seems that alas, we are not the only remaining superpower after all.

Posted by: Jaxas | February 28, 2006 11:25 AM

The ports deal is dead, the Repubs have pushed it back in the closet for further study. Still, the damage is done, the Dems can now twit Bush for being soft on terrorism. Look for the ads in October.

Posted by: Turnabout | February 28, 2006 11:52 AM

These joke journalists denouncing all of America as xenophobic have yet to establish how this port deal being approved would in any way diminsh that xenophobia. They point out xenophobia as the key problem, but offer no solutions to the problem. This superfical, johnny-come-lately stance against xenophobia is not genuine, as it only complains about xenophobia in hopes this UAE deal will go through, and offers nothing to address the alleged xenophobia problem we have beyond that.
Xenophobia means nothing to these journalist jokes beyond a talking point to get this port deal approved. After all, the American media was doing quite the opposite only a few weeks ago with the whole Danish cartoon affair. The press was fanning the flames of xenophobia and Islamophobia in America by unfairly (and disproportionally) showing the staged riots of Muslim extremists above and beyond any footage of peaceful protesting. The images of the moderate Muslim peaceful protesters were downplayed by the press while the images of violent, radical rioting Muslims were shown ad nauseum. How else would some silly story about a dozen obscure Danish cartoons become so popular in the US ? The press exploited xenophobia and Islamophobia in America to make the cartoon affair a big story... can anybody deny this?
I invite any one to peruse the Debate blogs concerning the Danish cartoons. You will find a great deal of Islamophobia within that debate's posts; What you won't find is a single word from Emily Messner denouncing all the Islamophobia then. She had plenty of opportunity to, but she took a pass. Real opposition to xenophobia/Islamophobia is not so selective.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 12:27 PM

For the record, here are some of my posts denouncing Islamophobia during the cartoon debate:

"It's become painfully obvious to me that the reason this whole cartoon circus has been so popular in America is because one of it's chief elements is portraying Muslims as violent extremists. We get shots of crowds of Muslim extremists reacting violently to the cartoons, and those shots are used to portray the entire nation of Islam as one that is violent and intolerant. I see nothing but comment after comment here about how every Muslim on the planet is guilty of the murderous sins of a small minority within the Islamic faith. Let's face it; All this focus on something as trivial as cartoons is because of the 'Islamic boogeyman' element it has to it, the press doing it's usual fare of promoting hype and hysteria by exploiting the actions of a handful of extremists. Once again, the media is preying upon the fear and hate that's existed towards Muslims ever since 9/11 ."
Posted by: ErrinF | Feb 9, 2006 3:07:16 PM

"Again, this entire cartoon fracas has been an exercise in the exploitation of Islamophobia within America by our media. It is almost a moot point whether the cartoons should be published here; The cartoons have never been the real focus of all this... showing rioting crowds of violent, intolerant Muslims has. It's the Islamic boogeyman right before our eyes, the barbarian at the gate live on television. Only it's a farce; It's show biz. What we are being shown portrayed as the norm is not reality, but a selectively edited version thereof. Don't believe the hype; Don't buy into the hysteria."
Posted by: ErrinF | Feb 9, 2006 4:48:38 PM

"This cartoon fracas will quickly die away. The American press has hyped it up for all it's worth. Being that the hype's mission has been accomplished (all of Islam has been equated to crowds of violent, intolerant protestors now), and that hype is hard to maintain for very long anyway, this is going to rapidly disappear from the headlines and the national conscience. I remain convinced that for a handful of obscure Danish cartoons to suddenly become such a huge story in America, that there is some sort of agenda behind how this all went down. Rarely has something so trivial become so hyper-inflated by the American media. If it wasn't for the Islamophobic element to the entire affair, this would have never gotten the level of exposure it did in America. At least Charles Krauthammer came out and said deliberately what the rest of his colleagues in the press have been begging as an issue from the get-go with this cartoon story: that the stereotype of Muslims as dangerous radicals is true. Well, it isn't true: Nearly ALL of the violent demonstrations that the US media ridiculously overexposed and hyped-up have now been exposed as falsely orchestrated by the governments of the countries they occurred in. Those governments wanted to incite violence so as to distract from their unpopularity with their own people. Governments such as Iran and Syria provided the pre-fabricated, bogus riots, and the American media bought into it hook, line, and sinker, knowing that such footage could tap into the American public's fear and ignorance of Islam. The Bush administration and the State Department have fortunately done a good job at exposing the fraudulent riots as fake. Too bad the media hasn't been equally forthcoming on this whole matter. The Washington Post certainly hasn't."
Posted by: ErrinF | Feb 13, 2006 6:25:37 PM

"There needs to be a new discussion involving these cartoons. Namely, this whole affair has unleashed a wave of Islamophobia within the U.S., and I would challenge members of the American press to respond to whether they are culpable in hyping the cartoon affair too much, cheifly the violent protests that have now been suspected of being orchestrated by the Iranian and Syrian regimes.
Is this the purpose of the press? To show imagery of violent, intolerant Muslims so as to prey on American fears of the radical element within Islam? To draw cartoons to deliberately offend on religious grounds, whether it be a Dane drawing Mohammed or an Iranian drawing the Holocaust? If the goal of all this cartoon coverage by our press was to depict all of Islam as the radical minority within it, then the American media has succeeded. Equal time has not been given to non-violent Muslim protests against the cartoons. Equal time has not been given to moderate Muslims that have responded to the cartoons with words, not violence. Instead, we have gotten mostly one-sided coverage that focuses almost entirely on riots that depict Muslims as the violent, dangerous stereotype we fear them to be, every bit as inaccurate and unfair as drawing a picture of Mohammed with a bomb in his turban."
Posted by: ErrinF | Feb 9, 2006 10:34:27 PM

So tell me again how I'm Islamophobic for being against this port deal? During the cartoon affair, did Emily Messner or Richard Cohen write anything even remotely similar to the stance I took? No, they did not. The moment they address Islamophobia beyond this port deal is the moment I start taking them seriously. Until then, I see their denouncement of xenophobia over this port deal as little more than crocodile tears.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 01:04 PM

Richard Cohen is a Xenophobicphobe.

Posted by: Will | February 28, 2006 01:04 PM

To be honest, Will, I pulled a 'Richard Cohen' on you during the cartoon debates, only I retracted and apologized then and there the second I realized I was mistaken for unfairly casting you as an Islamophobe. Like me (and unlike Emily), you have remained consistent in both debates, and I commend you for the strong stance you take against women being treated like second class citizens in most of these Islamic regimes. You are absolutely correct that if xenophobia is the problem, xenophobephobia is NOT the solution. Not that Cohen or Messner are really offerring any solutions to deal with xenophobia in a constructive matter...

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 01:20 PM

I think I'm going to puke!

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | February 28, 2006 01:33 PM

[Been away doing web design work, and going to be away after this week for a major computer overhaul (so ErrinF save your breath!) :D :D :D]

Well apparently the port's issue hasn't calmed down. With the release of that Coast Guard assessment on vetting that UAE company, it has, again, inflamed this whole issue.

Personally, I'm glad for the infection, because if any foreigner can waltz in and take over our ports, we might as well hand over the keys to run this country to foreigners (who have zero loyalities to THIS country, and free to trash it). >:(

This isn't xenophobia, this is just plain protecting our homefront. I don't care what foreign country it is --> NONE <-- should have control of vital structures (i.e., ports/shipping/waterways; airlines/aerospace manufacturing/airports). This goes along with my view that dual citizenship should be outlawed as well -- because if there's divided loyalities, a citizen may shortchange this country (at least be a stinking "fifth columnist", or "fellow traveller" of some group/agenda to take down our country/government).

It's one thing to disagree with the government, with partisans, with whatever, it's another to actively undermine this country as a whole. That's where the line is absolutely drawn with citizens. Speak and protest what you like, but the minute you try to change our government to be something else -- Goodbye!

That idealogy said, to give our port control over to foreigners who's country had harbored ***2*** 9/11 terrorists (especially so soon) is a major slap in the face of any US patriot. So I can't support the deal in any shape or form (and it's one of the few times I'll openly disagree with President Carter over an issue too <-- sorry, but my loyality to my country is greater).

Emily, rethink supporting a port takeover by a foreign country -- especially if you like your job and maybe even way of life. Those nationals don't value the freedoms we hold dear in this country, especially for women.

We're truly at the pivot point in our history of losing our national identity, when business is more important than our national customs/values and ideals -- let alone safety.

SandyK
Moderate Traditional Conservative
(one that could've said, "I told you so" about Neo-Cons [i.e., converted communists] destroying this country from the inside out)

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 02:05 PM

Jaxas - "In the end, I suspect that this is just another indicator in the decline of American economic preeminence in the world as we move to a more globalized system of finance, politics and yes, even government."

Agree. Much of the xenophobic reaction is American jingoists slowly realizing that foreigners are mopping the floor with the American worker due to a combination of better education and cheap labor. Add in unchecked immigration, out of control trade and gov't deficits their kids will be enslaved to, approaching failure of SS and medicare, loss of top pay manufacturing jobs and ---the High Anxiety of the American middle class couldn't be quashed any longer. Unfortunately, they in their ignorance have chosen to react on a sale of a foreign-leased asset from one good ally of America to another.

Add in the knee-jerk Lefty and Democrat Bush-bashers who are embracing xenophobia and bigotry purely out of their out of control partisan adversarial antics, and you have a mess.

Wait till the ignorant hysterics and crass partisans realize:

1. Airports have the same deal on leased terminals to foreign carriers.
2. Critical infrastructure in the US is owned by foreign firms in the nuclear, gas, telecomm, and chemical industries.
3. The only reason we have foreigners buying up US assets is we buy more from them than they buy from us. Surplus dollars are fungible.
4. America's obsolete schools and focus on the worst students has made us go from near the top-educated workforce in 1950 to the near-bottom in 2005.
5. That many other foreigners have leased port facilities before the Dubai issue. If Dubai is banned, how are the other countries dealt with to dispell, if possible, the perception of raw Anti-Arab bigotry? Do China, Singapore, Denmark, Japan, UK, France also get booted?
6. The ignorant American will sometime awake from his fat,dumb and happy bliss to realize that the profits generated from America's most lucrative industries are going to a small cadre of "Owner Class" Americans selling their countries assets off and serving as middlemen,and to foreigners.
7. The ignorant American may wake up to the obvious. That 95% of the potential security barriers to terrorism through air and shipping cargo paths lies overseas and in checking and supporting those overseas efforts made by our people and committed allies like Dubai. And near 100% in the case of WMD. It matters little that people with little understanding of shipping security want battalions of thousands of low-skill Federal drones in polyester suits standing at the ready for searching every cargo container arriving by air or ship into the center of a crowded city. At that point, the nuke weapon, nerve gas, bioagent is already positioned at ground zero and just has to be set off.

(The Hollywood fantasy is that the weapon arrives disassembled and has to somehow be smuggled past security to be reassembled with an elaborate timer and internal terrorist gang taking it to another crowded city to set it off. If you were a terorist EO (evil one) does it make sense to disassemble your A-Bomb, or to have it ready to go with an automatic GPS switch or a martyr with a remote trigger ready to set it off as soon as the ship docks in NYC's Brooklyn Port?)

Jaxas - "I can only hope that our role in America will be to ensure that this new global order of affairs is grounded in American Constitutional guarantees of liberty, free expression, self-determination and tolerance of other cultures and beliefs."

Why would the other nations moving ahead want to be put under the Constitutional guarantees of a declining nation much ridiculed for it's slow, clumsy, expensive legal system; failure to provide health care; limited economic mobility; and a Congress corrupted by money and special interests. At best, the rest of the world may select pieces of it. And pieces of what works best in France's Constitution, China's, Indias, etc...

Jaxas - "One thing seems certain: The direction we seem to be headed in does not bode well for this to be a New American Century. It seems that alas, we are not the only remaining superpower after all."

We and the media focus so much on military strength and the entitlement demands of failed American parasites -- that the equally critical factors of economic might and intellectual attainment of the people are overlooked. And reforming our failures in education and the economy are now blocked by powerful special interest groups of the Owner Class elites and the Education lobby of people working in the mostly taxpayer-funded education industry..And Americans are still for the most part fat dumb and happy - being told they are the "best in the world, with systems "2nd to none" in legal systems, productivity, gov't services, benefits, education, etc...

They are starting to realize it isn't quite so, but more decline will have to occur before they realize how serious America's decline in key areas is..

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 28, 2006 02:36 PM

Damn! I was 'this close' to revelling in SandyK's absence. LOL!
I wonder if she's comprehended yet that she and I are on the same page when it comes to this port deal undermining our national sovereignty and security. Regardless, I sincerely wish she gets a lot of design work this year... the bigger her workload, the happier I'll be. : )

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 02:38 PM

Sandyk,
I agree with almost everything you say, which is slightly refreshing =P.

Only thing I take note with is this comment:
"This goes along with my view that dual citizenship should be outlawed as well -- because if there's divided loyalities, a citizen may shortchange this country (at least be a stinking "fifth columnist", or "fellow traveller" of some group/agenda to take down our country/government)."

How would you reconcile the idea of dual citizenship and stop it? I am actually a dual citizen. I was born in PA, but as both my parents were British, I was immeadiately granted British citizenship at birth. In some cases, you can't completely rule out dual citizenship as other countries decide regardless. While I love both countries, my loyalty lies in USA as thats where I've spent the most time and feel is the superior of the two countries. Thats not to say that people cannot be divided. However, this idea seems flawed as I know plenty of single citizenship Americans who feel equal, if not more, patriotism towards their parent's countries, or in some cases, grandparents countries. A child that is raised very culturally based in that of the parents culture may find more sympathy to the other country.

I understand your distrust of the concept, but I do not think it is practical in terms of who the distrust targets.

Posted by: Freedom | February 28, 2006 02:47 PM

The United Arab Emirates and, more specifically, Dubai sound really grand. I really love them. They are my closest ally. I am going to buy King Fahd sheets for my bed.

I'm sure the 25% of Dubai's population that are Iranian Citizens have our best interests in mind.

Posted by: Will | February 28, 2006 02:50 PM

Sandy K - "That idealogy said, to give our port control over to foreigners who's country had harbored ***2*** 9/11 terrorists (especially so soon) is a major slap in the face of any US patriot."

I thought SandyK was talking about America but then realized she was only talking about 2 hijackers vs. the 5 that were "harbored" in America for 1-3 years and who got all their flying lessons here.

Then I realized the poor woman was talking about the country that has the most active and important US Naval port overseas, hosts US air bases, and which has tens of thousands of US soldiers enjoying R&R leave. The ally - who "must be punished" for past transgressions, meaning the British and American employees working the 6 former P&O leased terminals, I guess. Out of SandyK's "patriotic" rage, I guess.

Can't wait to see what she wants to do with the China (rival!), Singapore (terrorists were "hosted" and plotted there!), Denmark (plenty of radical Islamists live there!), the 9 leased ports the Saudis have had since 1997 (The Saudis? Ack!!), or the state-owned French companies making chemicals and doing nuclear reactor refuelings in America (The French...ooooo...my patriotic offense is nearly as vast as my ignorance about port security!!)

Or to the USA out of Sandy's "patriotic" rage for not only stopping our "harboring" of 5 hijackers (inc. Moussaoui) but also "harboring" the 9/11 plot originator and mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. No, worse than harboring, educating him for 4 years in North Carolina in aeronautic and mechanical engineering...

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 28, 2006 03:00 PM

Freedom,

Dual citizenship needs to go the way of the Dodo, because it can cause divided loyalities. This is very telling when they go off to fight wars in their "other country", and perhaps even fight US own troops and interests (consider the "American Taliban" scenerio).

If you live in this country, benefit from it's ways and means, you'll need to pick your allegience (can't be 100% loyal to the USA if you pay allegience to another country). It's all about citizenship and the responsibilities of being a citizen.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 03:20 PM

Apparently, there 42 or so blogs based in Dubai. I found one of them, and here is a link to it's current discussion about this port deal:

http://dubai.metblogs.com/archives/2006/02/dubai_good_for_american.phtml

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 03:42 PM

ErrinF,

Won't be having any web design work for awhile. Got a rig to build and tweak in all geeky goodness (i.e., going to OC'ed the sucker out of it's kazoo!!)...

http://www.overclock.net/intel-cpus/68724-wowzas-2-4a-chip-ocing-result.html

Just so happen to have that processor, and going to give Intel a run for it's $$$ money!

:D

That'll keep me away for at least a week. Don't worry, there's not a computer I can't fix to keep me away f-o-r-e-v-e-r.

;)

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 03:44 PM

My uncle who served in Vietnam is currently applying for dual citizenship in Australia. In no way does that weaken his patriotism just because he wants to be in better touch with his Australian roots.
While SandyK is right in that dual citizenship automatically creates a conflict of interest, it is done so on a personal level so I don't really see any harm in it. I for one am inclined to believe that any such conflict of interest would lead to the American-born dual citizen siding with America in every situation. I can understand her personally objecting to herself having dual citizenship, but to automatically condemn that in others is unfair. However, she is right that there is an inherent conflict of interest within dual citizenship.
Even then, I don't really see the point of debating dual citizenship as it is a reality that is not going to go away. Kind of like debating a port deal that is dead in the water and going to stay permanently retired.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 03:52 PM

Thoroughness is always good, Sandy. Maybe you should take twice as long on your next project to make sure everything goes right. : )

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 03:57 PM

Sandyk,
There are two problems with your comment. First, you assume that there is a global rule for citizenship. As mentioned, I was automatically assigned the dual citizenship without consent from myself, nor my parents. I could renounce it, but it is possible it would never be acknowledged by the country. The key issue here is what the person feels rather than what the person is, by place of birth, marriage, or coincidence of parents birth.

Second, there is no qualitative way of assessing that a person is still loyal to his country. You completely ignore the idea of single citizens having a stronger allegiance to another country. One can be only a US citizen and harbor resentment towards the country or greater sympathy to another. Your fear/claims seem unjustified simply because your approach does not actually address the problem you target.

Also, was the American Taliban actually born into the citizenship? Or was seeking out the culture and later fighting American troops something he sought out, based on what he feels. In that scenario, the second he raised arms against the US, he became a criminal and a traitor.

Posted by: Freedom | February 28, 2006 04:04 PM

Nice primer on Port Security prepared by Princeton U and a West Coast think tank out of Stanford:

http://www.bepress.com/jhsem/vol2/iss4/1/

Provides an overview and evaluation. 411KB Adobe Acrobat file, downloadable.

The 1997 deal that put the National Shipping Company of the Government and royal family investors in under Clinton's CFIUS staff lists the following ports leased by the Saudis:

http://www.nscsaamerica.com/terminals.htm

Don't forget the non sequiter that 15 of the 19 hijackers came from KSA, anymore than you forget the 2 from UAE, the 5 that worked out of Germany, or the 5 that were "harbored" in the USA and did the trial flight runs, purchased weapons, took martial arts courses and flying lessons in the USA! (and taught Khalid Sheikh Mohammed his business!)

"Gol Dang Furrners! Gol Dang Amuurican Harborers!"

Wonder when the MSM will wake up with a start and look at who leases the other sea and air cargo terminals??

This is going to be a long, long, education process of ignorant Americans...

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 28, 2006 04:35 PM

Much ado about what will ultimately be nothing. No one made a stink about UAE CSX rail deal back in 2005, and personally, a trainload of toxic waste derailed on its way through Baltimore should worry our politico's a little bit more than this fantasy of a nuclear weapon being floated into NY Harbor.

This is just politics and its all about the Arab "boogeyman". Its an easy way to score some points with the red meat crowd and anyone looking for that "AHA!!!" moment with the adminstration.

I'd love to have all of our port facilities managed directly by American companies, but for economic, political and basic logistical reasons, ain't never gonna happen.

Investigate the hell out of them, keep security tight and make the best business decision in the end.

Though it has been funny listening to Schumer propose that Haliburton ("run away!!! run away!!!") should run the show 'cause they're "americun"...

Enough to make the liberal head explode, I imagine.

Posted by: D. | February 28, 2006 05:05 PM

Oh man, I'm getting my topics mixed up.

Chris Ford, If you want, take a look at my response to you in the previous topic, then give me your thoughts.

Posted by: DK | February 28, 2006 05:09 PM

D wrote:
===========================================
"No one made a stink about UAE CSX rail deal back in 2005, and personally, a trainload of toxic waste derailed on its way through Baltimore should worry our politico's a little bit more than this fantasy of a nuclear weapon being floated into NY Harbor."
===========================================

Not a subject I would've thought to touch on WP, but locally, after the Graniteville, SC train derailment tragedy that killed 8 people, there's A LOT of concern about CSX's ability to keep trains on their tracks in my locale!!

Nice heads up on who owns that company, though. Folks should investigate that incident for a clue on what can go wrong in an emergency (and how quickly folks can die when a train derails).

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 05:20 PM

Schwarzenegger -- who campaigned for Bush in Ohio during the last presidential election -- even tried to distance himself from the president during an appearance Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press."

Asked if he was a "Bush Republican,'' the governor replied that he was an "Arnold Republican.''

Posted by: Bush Republican, Not! | February 28, 2006 05:37 PM

Public did not know about the CSX sale or I am sure there would have been more discussion/concern.


See the Bush Junta is controlling public access to information and INFORMATION IS POWER.

IF THEY DON'T HAVE ANYTHING TO HIDE WHY ARE THEY HIDING EVERYTHING???

Without a "blue sky" open disclosure requirement on the US Governement, they can do almost anything they want and we, the public, who should have a right to know, since it is our government, BUT we are in the dark.

I think the CSX sale would have raised a stink had everyone known about it.

Posted by: Impeach Bush | February 28, 2006 05:41 PM

Neil just might to have to pay for all the free p*ssy he's been getting if the Dubai port deal does not go through and they sue him. Did not he provide access/influence for the deal?

Is that a violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act? Justice should check that on out.

Posted by: FOO FIGHTER | February 28, 2006 05:46 PM

So far the only justification we are getting for this deal (Post Editorial Page included, with all due respect) is the fact if we don't do this, foreign investment might stop and then we will/might be in big financial trouble because we will not be able to fund our deficit account. I have always said this was Bush's plan, to bankrupt the US Government like so many other endevours he as been involved with.

But, once again, who got us in this deficit account situation?

BUSHIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! With their tax cuts for the rich, unfunded war(s) and failure to support new industry in the US like Stem Cell Research which could have been a great future investment for this country.

So the Bush Administration and all its supports including the Post Editorial Board have "dirty hands" and therefore, I am not convinced of its necessity or the need for foreign investment.

We should be striving to be independent of the world and not the derelict cousin who sleeps drunk on the couch.

Posted by: Impeach Bush | February 28, 2006 05:57 PM

1. Failure to prevent 9/11.
2. Largest running budget deficits in history.
3. Failure to capture Bin Laden 4 and a half years after 9/11.
4. Largest running trade deficits in history.
5. Unwarranted spying on Americans.
6. Trillion dollar Medicare drug mess.
7. Sanctioned torture of prisoners. Abu Ghraib.
8. Terry Schiavo!
9. Katrina!
10. Valerie Plame!
11 Hariet Miers!
12. Helping Iran accomplish what it could not do in a decade of war with Iraq.
13. Failure to adequately train and equip troops before sending them into battles.
14. Rampant cronyism/corruption.
15. Tripled oil price in 5 years.
16. Looming civil war in Iraq and religious war in the Middle East.
17. Politicization of science.
18. Failure to protect US border.
19. Failure to protect US ports with or without DPW.

20. Unprovoked invasion, occupation, and fubarization of Iraq.

Posted by: W | February 28, 2006 06:36 PM

DK - Thanks for the heads up. I had moved past the last thread and wouldn't have read your response or a good post by Cayambe and Will slightly twisting himself into a pretzel explaining why laws made under America are "legal" but laws governing Muslim cultures in their own homelands are "illegal and criminal".

Your post was a long one. I saved it to Word, and will likely retrieve some snippets to comment on in the nest two threads in Emily's Blog w/o derailing it by going off-topic by writing reams.

So a comment on one thing you wrote, then a little story and comment following on another paragraph...for starters:

DK - "The America I believe in doesn't destroy indiscriminately to make an example. I think the rest of the world is well aware of our power . As far as Germany and Japan, that carnage took place as the result of defeating organized armies that were still active and fighting against us after years of war."

No, in the total war that was WWII, Lemay and "Bomber" Harris (RAF) perfected the bombing that was to destroy the enemy Will and ability to sustain the German and Nazi military, basically by blasting and roasting industries and civilians. The lack of precision bombing wasn't the reason, all of it was targeted. If you got a tank barrel manufacturer in Essen bombed out, that was good, but wrecking the baby milk factory nearby was good too. Most of the ordnance dropped by wars end was incendiaries targeting residential neighgborhoods, civilian industry and the residents and civilians therein, for death.

The difference in Iraq this time a strategy to use "velvet glove" precision munitions seeking to spare civilians. The problem we are beginning to see is that there is no downside to the people supporting or acquiescing to radical Muslims since the US military is focused at all costs on avoiding harming insurgent cheerleaders and those that fail to help us root them out.

In WWII, there was plenty of downside to the civilian population supporting or standing by when elements went back on their surrender. We didn't give a crap about hearts and minds - but whacked them. The Soviets dealt with German insurgents that filtered into a surrendered city and attacked them by positioning 1000 artillery tubes and shattering any structure within, then sending tanks and shock troops in to purverize what was left and machinegun anything that moved. Other cities got the message. The US response was carpet bombing insurgent areas to their rear before formal surrender happened, or with Japs, a no prisoner policy or simply bypassing the island, cutting off all supplies, and letting the Jap soldiers and civilians there starve to death.

We may be seeing the strategic failure of "velvet glove" strategy where we can't kill all the insurgents but give no "motivation" to the civilian population to risk going against them - because if they side or acquisece to radical Islamists killing Americans, the Americans show up and beg to rebuild their sewage system and hand out candy to the children of the enemy. But if they side with the Americans, then suddenly risk is introduced...radical Muslims will retaliate against some by killing them. The least-risk option is to be silent or support the insurgents in this war.

The difference is the radical Muslims have not yet shed enough blood to get the public serious and to shut up the friends of terrorists in Muslim neighborhoods, the NYTimes, the ACLU. By the time we entered WWII, the Germans had already killed over 10 million, 6 million butchered by the Inhuman Imperial Jap Killing Machine. It will take more infidel blood being shed before we get serious enough to get past the enemy rights defenders involved in the Sitzkrieg...the False, limited war phase we are in with the limited and tremendously restrained use of force policies America is now engaged in.

================================

DK - "In order for the U.S. to win the struggle for the hearts and minds of people across the world we must know ourselves and be true to ourselves. We must acknowledge our partisan differences on issues, but must reconcile on our shared American ideals and values. In my opinion America stands for freedom, democracy based on separation of powers, each power having checks on the others. We stand for human rights and equal opportunities for all. We place value on ingenuity, hard work, exploration, and entrepreneurial spirit. We also value the rule of law. We have to stick by these values and ideals even under the toughest of circumstances. Even when they seem inconvenient."

Now a story.

You may know that the WWII Jap was just as fanatic and unrestrained in killing as the Islamoid. When Japan surrendered, a group of young fighters announced that they were unable to live with the shame and humiliation and tried gathering up enough pilots and bomb-makers to blast the onshore American troops and more importantly, to sink the Missouri in the midst of Japan's formal surrender ceremony. The men declared they were utterly fearless and knew the Americans would hunt them down and kill them, but the honor was everything.

They were stopped cold and turned in to authorities. Why?

Because other Japanese were utterly convinced that the Americans in their rage over such treachery would A-bomb or firebomb several more cities full of civilians and not accept surrender but invade and end the war with a US boot literally on the neck of the last living Japs in the last burning village.

And it was true. The US was going hell-bent in August 1945 to build more A-Bombs and position warehouses full of HE incendiary bombs to be ready to deal with the contingency of Japanese treachery. There was never a plan to just go after the insurgents, but to deal with the whole population and make them suffer the consequences.

The object in war is to annihilate the enemy, as quickly and brutally as possible. "Hearts and minds" campaigns that seek to avoid repercussions at all costs to US soldiers welfare, on behalf of the civilians the enemy hides within have a big downside. If the only menace the "peaceful, freedom loving Iraqis" face is crossing the local insurgents or Al Qaeda and they have nothing to worry about from Americans or Iraqi forces - it is human nature to sit silently or cheer as 11 Iraqi police or a Western hostage is executed in your village, or as hundreds watch terrorists digging a hole for an IED at the village outskirts for the next American convoy. Risky to warn the Americans, you know...and what's the downside of NOT warning them.

Preserving our values does not mean war must be fought by Boy Scouts or we must extend American constitutional rights to all enemy civilians.

We won by being merciless and savage on both enemy fighters AND civilians in war, then by being merciful and compassionate with enemy that really had surrendered and played ball with us. The Civil War was won when Sherman took it to the civilians. Their hearts and minds came later..

Posted by: Chris Ford | February 28, 2006 07:59 PM

Let's be factual...

1. No one could've prevent 9/11. That summer folks were crying foul with cameras in public places. Even if any administration would have had the "smoking gun" in hand, the public would've considered it a political ploy to make public policy (i.e., get more camera to "spy" on people in public places).

Everything is 20/20 in hindsight, only.

2. A deficit that went uncheck by every branch, and with *both* parties in power (i.e., no one wanted to be thought of being "soft" on terrorism).

3. Look how long it took to capture the FBI's most wanted. Bin Laden is a special fugitive, as he has heck of a lot of untraceable monies; a network of informants and safehouses; and understands if he so much as stands in a doorway anywhere he's dead meat.

But I believe they know where he is (and Pakistan knows as well, but won't give him up due to the perks the US is giving them for "persuing" the sucker). They're not going to spring the trap until they reveal his network more. They want to capture him alive (dead he'll just be replaced with another thug), and milk him of all of the intel they can get, then crush his network.

4. Read #2.

5. Until the next 9/11 occurs, then the cry will be the #1 compliant. Damn if you do, damn if you don't politics. :rolleyes:

6. No comment (my POV on the Medicare Part D is an subject in itself!!).

7. No country is free from torture. No country can prevent it, either (well, until we evolve from being just Homo sapiens). Laws will always be broken, and folks will always justify breaking them.

8. Read #7. Then add the killer/disposible mentality of Homo sapiens.

9. That was a multi-governmental mess. The federal government couldn't do it all wrong by itself, it needed help to make a normal rescue/recovery mission into a disaster. They got that with the help of State and local government too!!

10. Ask WP about leaks and informants. ;)

11. Harriet Meirs was a smoke screen. And by the looks of it deliberate side ploy to keep folks off the scent (and it worked too).

12. Iran was all in Iraq even before 2003. Just like Pakistan helped the Taliban come into power (and stay there).

13. Iraqi or US troops? Can only train combat vets via, well, combat. Can't teach them how to really fight in AIT. You learn the ropes in country.

14. Democrats (let alone any political party/organization) is well versed in croynism and nepotism.

15. Because of the unstability of the region, and nervousness not only of the producers (they're literally sitting on a petrol bomb and terrorists are just waiting to light a BIG match), but investors. Doesn't help that no refineries have been build in 30 years due to the NIMBY syndrome. So the blame can go all around for our dependence on foreign oil (especially when folks demand to drive 10mpg SUVs; power 500+watt PSU computers; their plasma TVs, and use A/C and heating 24/7 without thought).

16. Goes with the NIMBY theme. As long as they're fighting themselves over there, we don't care (yep, we don't care. Do people whine about the South Vietnamese that were victimized after the fall of Saigon today? No. Sad fact).

17. Politicization of science has always been there. Read some on Newton and how he got to fame, let alone a lot of the other egotistical scientists before and after him.

If folks think Science is politically neutral, they don't understand science (nor The Establishment that pushes fudge factors as "facts"), let alone the human condition.

Good case there was with Terry Schiavo (but that's another subject).

18. Neither party will protect the US border. Too much politics in scapegoating.

19. Read #18.

20. It was bound to happen sooner or later. Better today, when the bill is cheaper (imagine trying to finance another WWII in 2003!!).

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 08:03 PM

Chris Ford inflamed:
===========================================
"Because other Japanese were utterly convinced that the Americans in their rage over such treachery would A-bomb or firebomb several more cities full of civilians and not accept surrender but invade and end the war with a US boot literally on the neck of the last living Japs in the last burning village."
===========================================

Actually, the Emperor's word was Law. He surrendered, and if they didn't comply, they'd refuse his direct order.

They were turned in for not obeying.

The days of honor are long gone in warfare. It's each to it's own devices now (we've devolved into but barbarians, like the ones that sacked Rome).

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 08:07 PM

Even before we dropped the Bomb,the Japs were looking for a way to surrender using the Russians as intermediary and just like Stalin, he mislead the Japs as to what was going on to create a delay so he could enter the war and get some islands.

Lets get real here Chris.

Kill my brother, I kill you. Nothing ever stops a blood feud except civil society, justice, fair laws and courts to reduce agression in society.

If just needs to applied internationally now.

NO MORE WAR

Posted by: Impeach Bush | February 28, 2006 09:26 PM

"Impeach Bush," You completely missed Chris' point. Total war changes minds. The losers must submit to victors in total war, or no losers are left.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | February 28, 2006 09:31 PM

But the winners need to abeit by the Law, or they're no better than the losers...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/02/27/AR2006022701320.html

Can't baby terrorists, but turning out to be like them (and justifying the same brutality) makes the "good guys" actually thugs.

BTW, where's the accountability for the brass that allowed such policies? Non existent?

Not much has changed from the mindset in My Lai, huh?

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 10:10 PM

Chris Crass wrote:

"Add in the knee-jerk Lefty and Democrat Bush-bashers who are embracing xenophobia and bigotry purely out of their out of control partisan adversarial antics, and you have a mess."

That's like being called ugly by a toad.

Posted by: Jamal | February 28, 2006 10:32 PM

Emily wrote:

"Does it really make sense to deny foreign management of our ports? Is it even feasible to do so?"

Foreign management is not allowed for certain DOE and DOD operations because of national security risks, so the precedence is there. Is the level of national security risk to our ports high enough or important enough to ban foreign ownership? The president did say he would do everything in his powers to protect the country from terrorists.

It's very difficult to see the port deal be approved if the polls in this article are correct. The port deal will be another Harriet Miers. As for the security risk with approving the deal, I don't see much change. Since to date we have virtually no security at all.

Bush denies Iraq heading toward civil war

By Matt Spetalnick

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -

President George W. Bush, hit by polls showing America's support for the

Iraq war at an all-time low, denied on Tuesday Iraq was sliding into civil war, despite the worst sectarian strife since a U.S. invasion.
The decline in Bush's public approval ratings came as he told Iraqis they faced a choice between "chaos or unity" amid violence that has dented U.S. hopes for the stability needed to pave the way for a U.S. troop withdrawal.
At least 60 people were killed in Baghdad on Tuesday in the latest in a series of deadly attacks following the bombing of a major Shi'ite mosque last week.
Asked what Washington would do if civil war broke out in Iraq, Bush told ABC News: "I don't buy your premise that there's going to be a civil war."
He said he had spoken to leaders of all Iraqi sects and "I heard loud and clear that they understand that they're going to choose unification, and we're going to help them do so."
Despite that, sectarian bloodshed has complicated efforts to forge a new unity government.
At home, pessimism over Iraq, and Bush's support -- despite bipartisan objections -- for letting a state-owned Arab company take over operations at six U.S. ports, appeared to be major factors driving his job performance rating down to 34 percent.
They were the lowest CBS News poll numbers of his presidency, creating a grim picture in a midterm election year.
Bush brushed aside the findings, saying ups and downs in the polls were not worth worrying about.
"I've got ample capital and I'm using it to spread freedom and to protect the American people," he told ABC before leaving on an trip to South Asia that offered a breather from problems and miscues that have recently plagued him in his second term.
U.S. TROOPS WANT OUT
The same CBS poll showed public approval for Bush's handling of the situation in Iraq, once among his strongest suits, falling to 30 percent from 37 percent in January.
Sixty-two percent of Americans said they thought U.S. efforts to bring order to Iraq were going badly, up from 54 percent in January, compared with 36 percent who said things were going well, a drop from 45 percent.
Raising questions about Bush's vow to keep troops in Iraq as long as they are needed, a Le Moyne College/Zogby poll showed 72 percent of U.S troops serving there think the United States should exit within the next year. Nearly one in four said the troops should leave immediately.
A strategy often used by the Bush administration against opponents of the war in Iraq has been to accuse them of being unfair to troops who want to stay until they get the job done.
But Americans' opposition to the war has grown as U.S. casualties have mounted and violence has persisted despite a costly program to train Iraqi police and soldiers. There have been 2,295 U.S. military deaths in Iraq since the start of the war in March 2003.
Before leaving for India and Pakistan, Bush skirted a reporter's question of whether the latest Iraqi violence would affect prospects for beginning a drawdown of the 136,000 U.S. troops now in Iraq.
"The people of Iraq and their leaders must make a choice," Bush said after a White House meeting with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. "The choice is a free society, or a society dictated ... by evil people who will kill innocents."
Administration officials have accused Sunni-led insurgents, including al Qaeda operatives, of trying to foment civil war in Iraq. In Washington, a U.S. military intelligence chief called the situation "very tenuous" but not yet civil war.
Seated with Bush, Berlusconi stood by his plan to withdraw all of Italy's 3,000 troops from Iraq by the end of the year.
"This plan has been agreed upon also together with our allies, and with the Iraqi government," Berlusconi, one of Bush's staunchest allies on Iraq, told reporters.

Posted by: Jamal | February 28, 2006 11:00 PM

So Chris Ford denounces xenophobia, while at the same time referring to Japanese people as 'Japs'. What's even worse is that you don't hear him discussing 'Japs' at all until SandyK, somebody he knows is of Japanese descent, joined the debate.
What a complete and utter joke it is for Chris Ford to denounce xenophobia. Anybody with any rudimentary knowledge of him knows that his past comments are completely opposite his current ones. He's for this port deal because the Democrats are against it; Nothing more, nothing less.
Oh, and if this port deal was going to Israel instead of the UAE, Chris Ford would be flipping the f*ck out over this. As it were, he'd gladly let our ports be operated by a government that doesn't recognize the state of Israel, a country that's been a much better ally than the UAE will ever be.

Posted by: ErrinF | February 28, 2006 11:06 PM

He's for the Ports deal because it's all about party loyality, even at the expense of the nation itself.

It's why I'm not a party member -- a moderate Traditional conservative that's strictly an independent -- because when folks are willing to shortchange the nation itself to prop a party, it's can literally destroy this country.

My loyality is to God and country, in that order. Political parties don't even enter the equation.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | February 28, 2006 11:22 PM

On the lighter side, the following link from the conservative think tank, Red State Update, provides insight to the port deal.

http://www.travisandjonathan.com/redstateupdateports.html

Posted by: Jamal | February 28, 2006 11:41 PM

ErrinF, after your explosion of bigotry and xenophobia towards an Arab ally, don't lecture me on the Left's PC standards. WWII Japanese are "Japs" WWII Germans are "Nazis" in the historical descriptors commonly used. Your analogy to Israel is off. If Israel wanted to be a terminal operator, it would be the same negligable security concern as with DPW. Even STATE-OWNED!!! El Al cargo terminals at several airports are not a concern. Israel's danger is their spying and then selling stuff to the Chinese or Euro buyers. So we keep them at distance from our military plants as untrustworthy, and should do more about Israeli state-owned or private security or telecomm companies here.

As for SandyK, she appears pretty ill-informed. DPW is rated as the top global container ship terminal operator for 2005 and was the first shipping firm to accept the Container Security Initiative. As has been discussed, how many thousands of people await an incoming ship, Federal security or not, Arab-owned Port operator or not, is irrelevant if the concern is WMD. Because the ship is already at Ground Zero in the center of a city before the 1st container is inspected. That is why 90% of the effort is overseas and the Coast Guard said that if more funds are appropriated, they do not want them to go to port inspectors in the USA but to improving intelligence, tracking, and security algorithms employed overseas.

And air cargo is just as important because thousands of TSA drones at an airport dedicated to "search arriving cargo" would not be of much help with an incoming plane with a nuke, nerve gas cargo, or bioagent set to go off or triggered by an Islamoid by remote at optimum air burst height. So most of our efforts on stopping lethal incoming WMD threats are not focused on when a plane would finally land in a big city, but never does...but overseas.

As for the Jap plot to bushwack the arriving Americans and sink the Missouri during the surrender ceremony being deterred because the Emperor said "surrender", the plotters formed in rejection of the Emperor's Address and had already vowed to not listen to the Emperor but salvage his glory and the nation's honor through suicidal attack.

What deterred them was in part the chain of command and the Emperor's speech, but the Jap militarists had bypassed or politely defied him before. What sealed ending the plot was senior Japanese commanders were absolutely convinced there would be no limit of America's fury if they encountered treachery, and Japans remaining cities would burn by carpet bombing and nukes and then a merciless invasion like Saipan would occur. 10 more A-bombs were ready by fall, 1945. Boosted fission bombs in early 1946, and over 60 by the fall of 1946.

SandyK - "But the winners need to abeit by the Law, or they're no better than the losers..."

There is no LAW in accordance with the tight to our Constitution lefties claim Islamoids are due, or "enemy civil liberties" and due process, silly woman! Only an obligation to abide by the Hague and Geneva...if the other side signs the Geneva Protocols.

After war, if they submit as others have done, then we are supposed to be compassionate. But as things stand, the populace and the bad guys dislike America, and have no fear of retribution. Even the civilians sick of the insurgency know that no price will be paid if they openly side with the insurgents and terrorists, but lethal consequences for openly siding with America. Captured enemy have no fear and demand a meal and a Qu'ran and refuse to talk...until Iraqi internal security or police show up.

It is a lesson that we can't be too compassionate in an insurgency or make the average citizen's risk assessment strategy an easy choice to go with the bad guys...

========================

""Impeach Bush," You completely missed Chris' point. Total war changes minds. The losers must submit to victors in total war, or no losers are left.

Posted by: johnnyg"

Precisely. Not enough infidel blood has been shed to warrant total war, nor should we seek it. But if we go there, there will be no significant insurgent population and no worries about IEDs and stone-throwers - because of the greater scale of destruction - nor of when the population truly submits and is peaceable...

Posted by: Chris Ford | March 1, 2006 01:21 AM


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Did 308,000 cancelled Ohio voter registrations put Bush back in the White House?

By Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman

Mar 1, 2006, 00:35

While life goes on during the Bush2 nightmare, so does the research on what really happened here in 2004 to give George W. Bush a second term.

Pundits throughout the state and nation -- many of them alleged Democrats -- continue to tell those of us who question Bush's second coming that we should "get over it," that the election is old news.

But things get curiouser and curiouser.

In our 2005 compendium HOW THE GOP STOLE OHIO'S 2004 ELECTION & IS RIGGING 2008, we list more than a hundred different ways the Republican Party denied the democratic process in the Buckeye State. For a book of documents to be published September 11 by the New Press, entitled WHAT HAPPENED IN OHIO?, we are continuing to dig.

It turns out, we missed more than a few of the dirty tricks Karl Rove, Ken Blackwell and their GOP used to get themselves four more years. In an election won with death by a thousand cuts, some that are still hidden go very deep. Over the next few weeks we will list them as they are verified.

One of them has just surfaced to the staggering tune of 175,000 purged voters in Cuyahoga County (Cleveland), the traditional stronghold of the Ohio Democratic Party. An additional 10,000 that registered to vote there for the 2004 election were lost due to "clerical error."

As we reported more than a year ago, some 133,000 voters were purged from the registration rolls in Hamilton County (Cincinnati) and Lucas County (Toledo) between 2000 and 2004. The 105,000 from Cincinnati and 28,000 from Toledo exceeded Bush's official alleged margin of victory -- just under 119,000 votes out of some 5.6 million the Republican Secretary of State. J. Kenneth Blackwell, deemed worth counting.

Exit polls flashed worldwide on CNN at 12:20 am Wednesday morning, November 3, showed John Kerry winning Ohio by 4.2 percent of the popular vote, probably about 250,000 votes. We believe this is an accurate reflection of what really happened here.

But by morning Bush was being handed the presidency, claiming a 2.5 percent Buckeye victory, as certified by Blackwell. In conjunction with other exit polling, the lead switch from Kerry to Bush is a virtual statistical impossibility. Yet John Kerry conceded with more than 250,000 ballots still uncounted, though Bush at the time was allegedly ahead only by 138,000, a margin that later slipped to less than 119,000 in the official vote count.

At the time, very few people knew about those first 133,000 voters that had been eliminated from the registration rolls in Cincinnati and Toledo. County election boards purged the voting registration lists. Though all Ohio election boards are allegedly bipartisan, in fact they are all controlled by the Republican Party. Each has four seats, filled by law with two Democrats and two Republicans.

But all tie votes are decided by the secretary of state, in this case Blackwell, the extreme right-wing Republican now running for governor. Blackwell served in 2004 not only as the man in charge of the state's vote count, but also a co-chair of the Ohio Bush-Cheney campaign. Many independent observers have deemed this to be a conflict of interest. On election day, Blackwell met personally with Bush, Karl Rove and Matt Damschroder, chair of the Franklin County (Columbus) Board of Elections, formerly the chair of the county's Republican Party.

The Board of Elections in Toledo was chaired by Bernadette Noe, wife of Tom Noe, northwestern Ohio's "Mr. Republican." A close personal confidante of the Bush family, Noe raised more than $100,000 for the GOP presidential campaign in 2004. He is currently under indictment for three felony violations of federal election law, and 53 counts of fraud, theft and other felonies in the "disappearance" of more than $13 million in state funds. Noe was entrusted with investing those funds by Republican Gov. Robert Taft, who recently pleaded guilty to four misdemeanor charges, making him the only convicted criminal ever to serve as governor of Ohio.

The rationale given by Noe and by the Republican-controlled BOE in Lucas and Hamilton Counties was that the voters should be eliminated from the rolls because they had allegedly not voted in the previous two federal elections.

There is no law that requires such voters be eliminated. And there is no public verification that has been offered to confirm that these people had not, in fact, voted in those elections.

Nonetheless, tens of thousands of voters turned up in mostly Democratic wards in Cincinnati and Toledo, only to find they had been mysteriously removed from the voter rolls. In many cases, sworn testimony and affidavits given at hearings after the election confirmed that many of these citizens had in fact voted in the previous two federal elections and had not moved from where they were registered. In some cases, their stability at those addresses stretched back for decades.

The problem was partially confirmed by a doubling of provisional ballots cast during the 2004 election, as opposed to the number cast in 2000. Provisional ballots have been traditionally used in Ohio as a stopgap for people whose voting procedures are somehow compromised at the polls, but who are nonetheless valid registrants.

Prior to the 2004 election, Blackwell made a range of unilateral pronouncements that threw the provisional balloting process into chaos. Among other things, he demanded voters casting provisional ballots provide their birth dates, a requirement that was often not mentioned by poll workers. Eyewitnesses testify that many provisional ballots were merely tossed in the trash at Ohio polling stations.

To this day, more than 16,000 provisional ballots (along with more than 90,000 machine-spoiled ballots) cast in Ohio remain uncounted. The secretary of state refuses to explain why. A third attempt by the Green and Libertarian Parties to obtain a meaningful recount of the Ohio presidential vote has again been denied by the courts, though the parties are appealing.

Soon after the 2004 election, Damschroder announced that Franklin County would eliminate another 170,000 citizens from the voter rolls in Columbus. Furthermore, House Bill 3, recently passed by the GOP-dominated legislature, has imposed a series of restrictions that will make it much harder for citizens to restore themselves to the voter rolls, or to register in the first place.

All this, however, pales before a new revelation just released by the Board of Elections in Cuyahoga County, the heavily Democratic county surrounding Cleveland.

Robert J. Bennett, the Republican chair of the Cuyahoga Board of Elections, and the chair of the Ohio Republican Party, has confirmed that prior to the 2004 election, his BOE eliminated -- with no public notice -- a staggering 175,414 voters from the Cleveland-area registration rolls. He has not explained why the revelation of this massive registration purge has been kept secret for so long. Virtually no Ohio or national media have bothered to report on this story.

Many of the affected precincts in Cuyahoga County went 90 percent and more for John Kerry. The county overall went more than 60 percent for Kerry.

The eliminations have been given credence by repeated sworn testimony and affidavits from long-time Cleveland voters that they came to their usual polling stations only to be told that they were not registered. When they could get them, many were forced to cast provisional ballots which were highly likely to be pitched in the trash, or which remain uncounted.

Ohio election history would indicate that the elimination of 175,000 voters in heavily Democratic Cleveland must almost certainly spell doom for any statewide Democratic campaign. These 175,000 pre-2004 election eliminations must now be added to the 105,000 from Cincinnati and the 28,000 from Toledo.

Therefore, to put it simply: at least 308,000 voters, most of them likely Democrats, were eliminated from the registration rolls prior to an election allegedly won by less than 119,000 votes, where more than 106,000 votes still remain uncounted, and where the Republican secretary of state continues to successfully fight off a meaningful recount.

There are more than 80 other Ohio counties where additional pre-November 2004 mass eliminations by GOP-controlled boards of election may have occurred. Further "anomalies" in the Ohio 2004 vote count continue to surface.

In addition, it seems evident that the Democratic Party will now enter Ohio's 2006 gubernatorial and US Senate races, and its 2008 presidential contest, with close to a half-million voters having been eliminated from the registration rolls, the vast majority of them from traditional Democratic strongholds, and with serious legislative barriers having been erected against new voter registration drives.

Stay tuned.
Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman are co-authors of HOW THE GOP STOLE AMERICA'S 2004 ELECTION & IS RIGGING 2008, available via www.freepress.org. They are co-editors, with Steve Rosenfeld, of WHAT HAPPENED IN OHIO?, coming in September from The New Press. Important research for this piece has been conducted by Dr. Richard Hayes Philips, Dr. Norm Robbins and Dr. Victoria Lovegren.

Copyright © 1998-2006 Online Journal
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Posted by: CHE | March 1, 2006 03:36 AM

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Gulags For American Citizens In Final Planning Stages
Halliburton sex slave trade criminals prepare camps for political dissidents

Paul Joseph Watson & Alex Jones/Prison Planet.com | March 1 2006

Bush administration and US army preparations to target American citizens and intern them in forced labor camps has vastly accelerated in the past month and commentators from all over the political spectrum are sounding the alarm bells that the round-ups may begin soon.

Once the bane of the media's stereotypical 'tin foil hat wearing' caricatures, concentration camps in America are now serious news and no one is laughing.

Following the news first given wide attention by this website, that Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root had been awarded a $385 million dollar contract by Homeland Security to construct detention and processing facilities in the event of a national emergency, the Alternet website put together an alarming report that collated all the latest information on plans to initiate internment of political subversives and Muslims after the next major terror attack in the US.

The article highlighted the disturbing comments of Sen. Lindsey Graham, who encouraged torture supporting Attorney General Alberto Gonzales to target, "Fifth Columnists" Americans who show disloyalty and sympathize with "the enemy," whoever that enemy may be.

It is important to stress that the historical precedent mirrors exactly what the Halliburton camp deal outlines. Oliver North's Reagan era Rex 84 plan proposed rounding up 400,000 refugees, under FEMA, in the event of "uncontrolled population movements" over the Mexican border into the United States.

The real agenda, just as it is with Halliburton's gulags, was to use the cover of rounding up immigrants and illegal aliens as a smokescreen for targeting political dissidents. From 1967 to 1971 the FBI kept a list of persons to be rounded up as subversive, dubbed the "ADEX" list.

The current terrorist suspect list was recently revealed to contain the names of 325,000 people. The government claimed that only a tiny fraction were American citizens living in America but when compared to the potential terrorist list in the UK, which under section 44 of the terrorism act has ensnared at least 119,000 people, most of them innocent protesters, the number is likely to be far higher. Britain's population is only 60 million compared to the US at 295 million.

Halliburton, through their KBR subsidiary, is the same company that built most of the major new detention camps in Iraq and Afghanistan. KBR have been embroiled in a human sex slave trade that their representatives have lobbied to continue.

We have a company that has been handed a contract to build prison camps in America that is engaged in trafficking young girls and women. Can this horror movie get any more frightening?

A much discussed and circulated report, the Pentagon's Civilian Inmate Labor Program, has recently been updated and the revision details a "template for developing agreements" between the Army and corrections facilities for the use of civilian inmate labor on Army installations."

The plan is clearly to swallow up disenfranchised groups likes prisoners and Muslims at first and then extend the policy to include 'Fifth Columnists,' otherwise known as anyone who disagrees with the government or exercises their Constitutional rights.

Respected author Peter Dale Scott speculated that the "detention centers could be used to detain American citizens if the Bush administration were to declare martial law."

Daniel Ellsberg, former Special Assistant to Assistant Secretary of Defense, called the plan, "preparation for a roundup after the next 9/11 for Mid-Easterners, Muslims and possibly dissenters. They've already done this on a smaller scale, with the 'special registration' detentions of immigrant men from Muslim countries, and with Guantanamo."

George Bush has declared himself to be dictator and to have supreme power over and above the limitations of the US Constitution. Bush administration officials like Alberto Gonzales have declared Bush to be "above the law." White House advisors are openly discussing the legality of crushing a child's testicles as part of the war on terror. Preparation for the internment of thousands of Americans who are 'disloyal' in times of emergency are afoot.

The next step is clearer than it has ever been. One more large scale staged terror attack in America and the result will be martial law. When even famous singers like Morrissey are being detained and questioned by the secret service for "speaking out against the American and British governments," we know we are in a lot of trouble.

Posted by: CHE | March 1, 2006 03:45 AM

ErrinF, after your explosion of bigotry and xenophobia towards an Arab ally, don't lecture me on the Left's PC standards. Posted by: Chris Ford | Mar 1, 2006 1:21:42 AM

You're delusional, Chris Ford. Post a single sentence from me concerning this issue that is in any way an 'explosion of bigotry and xenophobia' towards the UAE. First you lied about me being manic over the Cheney hunting accident when I never did such thing; Now you are lying about me being bigotted and xenophobic. Constant lies and delusions. What a loser and a liar you are, Chris Ford. Explain again how you didn't introduce the term 'Jap' into this discussion until SandyK joined it? 3 blogs from Emily concerning the port deal, and you don't start discussing 'Japs' until SandyK, who you know to be of Japanese descent, joins the 4th blog. Who do you think you are fooling?

Posted by: ErrinF | March 1, 2006 08:47 AM

Chris Ford is an out and out racist as anyone can see who reads his writings. He also becomes incredibly happy when he can gang up on someone. He is not here to learn but to practice his racism on others as any good White Supremecist.

Posted by: SpeakoutforDemocracy | March 1, 2006 11:30 AM

get a room, or make a cogent point.

Posted by: chis ford errin f... | March 1, 2006 12:35 PM

Just a little heads up, since ErrinF mentioned Paleo-Conservatism. Seems there's some confusion...

1. Paleo-Conservatives are extremely rare. Even those who like the Constitution party, by and large are not Paleos. Paleo's are right of Facism, and dislike Jews/Foreigners with a passion (Chris Ford appears to be one, but he's not, as he has no reservations about Jews, or Empire building, for example). They're extreme isolationists, and want the USA to return to the pre 1950 way of life. Think a KKK or Neo-Nazi idealogy, and you'll get an idea of Paleo-Conservatism.

2. Traditional Conservatives were conservatism before the Neo-Conservative influx (we still exist, but most aren't in the GOP anymore). They believe in USA traditional values (i.e., speaking American English/none of this hyphenated American junk, etc.) -- "the American way" philosophy. They are not as extreme as Paleos, can tolerate foreigners (if they assimilate and don't try to change 200 years of traditions/customs/values). Think John Wayne and Norman Rockwell views of America. Traditionals believe in small government and even smaller federal military. They also are fond of hard assets (stocks and papered monies are viewed as unsafe), and used to dominate as bankers and brokerage board members. Isolationists at heart (the Japanese model is a good example). Good example of a Traditional conservative president was Esienhower (so don't consider us racists). Traditional conservatism platform also had the first ERA on the GOP plank (in 1940) -- 30 years before Democrats pushed it. So yes, we're also progressive. Ironically, liberals can actually like Traditionals, because of their idealogy is quite similiar, but on different poles. Oh, and we don't wear religion on our sleeve. The Founders had a reason to seperate State religion and government -- it's called what brought the pilgrams over in the first place!!

3. Neo-Conservatives are literally converted Democrats (many can trace their roots to the old Cracker Party and such -- you'd be suprised how many Neo-CONFEDERATES like Neo-Conservatism). They even bring with them their communist tendencies (BIG government; wealth redistribution; fond of spending money they don't have; ultra-secrecy; love for a bigger federal military; destroying the country from the inside out). They are extremely pro-business (and who Esienhower warned about with his military-industrial complex warning). Their love for Israel (because the founders of this movement were in fact communist Jews -- Irving Kristol being a prime example) is second to none, and will bend over backwards to help with their policies. They believe in Empire building (Traditionals and Paleos are more isolationists, and detest foreign control, let alone *us* colonizing other countries. That's a fundemental idealogy: deep from the days of the Boston Tea Party and Valley Forge, that Neo's don't share). Neo-Conservatives also love papered assets (stocks, bonds and quick cash their idols). They will wear religion on their sleeve and even try to force it down your throat (purposely forgetting The Founder's ideal of this country).

Neo-Cons are no more conservative than Ted Kennedy is Pat Buchanan. They spit in The Founder's face, then will try to sell our country to the highest bidder -- with NO SHAME. >:(

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 1, 2006 04:39 PM

Hey! Where did all the "Emily's" posts go? They were hilarious and apt. What, you can use satire in a cartoon, but you can't use it in a post? Or can only Tom Toles use satire at The Post? I didn't originate the running joke, but I joined in for a few. I have no clue who started it, but it seemed appropriate to post mock representations of the stereotype Emily was laying on all those who oppose this port deal as Ugly Americans.
I guess one of the rules of the Debate is that Emily is sacrosanct. Now, I was away for a bit, so I may be mistaken and whomever else was partaking in the satirical postings went overboard in my absence, but in that case just those overboard posts should have been censored and removed, not the whole lot. I don't recall expletives or threats in any of them. No explanation of why they were yanked, so I guess it will remain a mystery.
That they all disappearred showed that they hit home, though, eh? I better watch what I say, else Emira Emily might shut off my freedom of expression. See, 'Emira Emily' is a satirical caricature of words portraying Emily symbolically as an indifferent Washington Post press siding with a repressive emirate, much like Tom Toles cast our embattled troops as a quadrapolegic. If a picture is worth a thousand words, than a thousand words are worth a picture.
Thing is, I don't think Emily made the decision to yank those posts as much as the hapless WaPo ombudsman that is no stranger to ridicule for taking her ridiculously false stance of blaming Democrats equally culpable for Jack Abramoff in the past. Last I knew, Emily had the debating skills to jump in and deal with posts head on if she feels they are out of line, much like she has done in the past. Then again, what can Emily do if the Washington Post's ombudsman has a bad habit of censorship? I thought an ombudsman protected the public's interest in matters with the paper, but she is little more than a censor doing quite the opposite.
I for one don't offer any apologies for the few "Emily's" posts I joined in on, as I don't think you do anybody any favors by pulling punches (guessed that yet?) though it is rare for me to post other than with my handle ErrinF, and I never post anonymously. Would Emily mind explaining what happenned, or would she rather stay anonymous on what went down?

Posted by: Emily's Emily's | March 1, 2006 07:18 PM

I retract my last statement. Sorry for the mistake, but my server switched between port debate blogs when I logged back on after a break, and it looked as though the hilarious Emily's posts had been stricken from the record. My bad. At least I got to admit that I partook in the Emily's thread out of satire, nothing else. Again, no posts were yanked, but a technical snafu put me on the wrong blog page. Guess it's all part of the Bizarro world nature of this port deal debate.

Posted by: ErrinF | March 1, 2006 07:27 PM

Chris Ford,

You brought me down to earth a little bit with your "reality check" response concerning total war. I can see the point you are making and it makes me consider the possible shortcomings of trying to fight a limited war. That being said, I want to point out a few critical aspects that you are leaving out in your comparitive analysis and how those aspects might influence the overall conclusions that people end up developing.

Your story of the Japanese radicals that tried to buck the emperor and blow up the Missouri during the surrender actually illustrates one of the points I want to make.

In the warfare that we are now engaged in, the idea of a surrender of one country to another seems antiquated. Who will surrender to us? We are not fighting a country, we are fighting in countries. The enemy has no alliegance to a country.I say again, the total war that was WWII resulted from countries with operating central control, the Axis countries, continuing to prosecute a war against the Allies. The Axis countries were being held accountable until their governments agreed to unconditional surrender. The central government still maintained control over their citizens and it was they who stopped the young radical Japanese, whether for the reasons you describe, the word of the Emperor being law, as SandyK states, or both.

If, in Iraq, we had followed the WWII-style model that you describe so well, things might have gone more like this:

Instead of smart bombs taking out strategic targets followed by the quick march on Baghdad by our troops, we would have sent the B-52's to carpet bomb Baghdad, Basra, Najaf, Samara, Tikrit, Kirkuk, and all other major cities. To hell with the infrastructure, the oil fields, the refineries, the pipelines (just an aside - do you think certain business interests might have influenced our actual strategy?) , the civilians, the hospitals, the schools, the mosques, the historic relics and archeological sites, etc. We would have carpet bombed until Saddam came crawling out of his mile deep concrete and steel bunker waving a white flag.Then we would have had a big ceremony like we did after the Gulf War where HE, not a few of his generals, signed the surrender papers. Would that utter destruction followed by that symbolic and legal act have short circuited an insurgency? I have to admit, there's a good chance it would have if it had all gone down that way..... BUT the other question is - what would have been the impact on the War on Terror? Please allow me to speculate:

To start I have to put something in context - In an earlier post I asked a question - what is the basis of "patriotism" in the middle east? Country or Islam? The answer I received from one person agreed with what I was thinking - Islam comes first.

Now, the speculation -

1) A mixed reaction of fear, horror, and anger throughout the middle east and the world with widespread protests that would have dwarfed the level of protest we have seen based on the strategy we actually did follow.

2) Widespread suspicision and fear of the US (greater than what there is now) causing other COUNTRIES (the political entities) to be very reluctant and cautious about crossing the U.S. in any public sense.

3) Meanwhile clerics throughout the middle east would have been condemning the actions of the U.S., especially the radical fundamentalist ones and preaching against us, even more than now, and inciting jihad

4) Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups would have gained more sympathizers and willing participants throughout the middle east, Europe, Africa, and other parts of the world.

5) There would have been no reduction in the number of terrorist operations around the world, and in fact the number might have increased from what it has been. The activities would have been varied in levels of organization and competence due to so many new players getting involved.

6) A number of new terrorist organizations may have formed. Our efforts against terrorism would have been diffused over a wider area and through the need to track a larger number of participants.

7) The deadliest of terrorist organizations - Al Qaeda would have survived, as they have under current circumstances and perhaps would have gained in strength.

8) In the years after our total war style assault on Iraq, we would have either had a huge rebuilding project on our hands there (bigger than now) or we would have left it to them and the population would have been decimated by disease, starvation, exposure, etc.
In that acse, Iran probably would have moved in to reform what was left of Iraq as a puppet of theirs.

9) Long term the War on Terror would have been just as large and complex, maybe more so, even though the political entities would have been cowed to a greater extent by the U.S.

If we had taken the carpet bombing approach in Afganistan as well, instead of the smart bomb/Northern Alliance approach we would have killed more civilians, destroyed more infrastructure, as we would have in Iraq, possibly gotten the Taliban to surrender - whether M. Omar or not, who knows? It is likely that even more Al Qaeda would have escaped because there are limits to the area that can be effectively carpet bombed. Carpet bombing is very effective in cities or for troop positions, it is not effective over an area the size of say - the entire Rocky Mountain range, or even a portion of it. I believe they would have disappeared into the mountains, been absorbed into the countless villages and tribal groups, caves, valleys, and other havans where would have cooled their heels until the heat was off. If we had sent in the army to track down the villages and tribes and hold them accountable, forcing them to talk, the "Al Qaedans" (I like that better than your "Islamoids") would have high tailed it for other havans in other countries to continue planning their operations elsewhere.

I stress again, we are not fighting a COUNTRY, we are fighting a loose collection of groups that have no alliegance to a COUNTRY. Their alliegence is to a cause. Using the tactics you describe to win the War on Terror would be like trying to kill a swarm of bees with a machine gun.

Posted by: DK | March 2, 2006 02:38 AM

They best way to kill a swarm of bees to to spray the swarm with a powerful insecticide. In other words you poison their environment.

We have to poison the terrorist's environment. They thrive in environments of upheaval, violence, and polarization. If we can influence the hearts and minds of people throughout the Islamic world we will slowly starve terrorist organizations of sentiment, money, recruits, rhetoric, and purpose. That won't be easy. Its harder and a more complex problem than figuring out the logistics of sending in the B-52's and the army, but ultimately it will prove more effective.

Thanks for listening.

Posted by: DK | March 2, 2006 03:01 AM

ErrinF..."I retract my last statement. Sorry for the mistake,"


Not to worry, I doubt anyone will notice the difference.

Posted by: Cayambe | March 2, 2006 01:25 PM

"Now, the speculation -

1) A mixed reaction of fear, horror, and anger throughout the middle east and the world with widespread protests that would have dwarfed the level of protest we have seen based on the strategy we actually did follow.

2) Widespread suspicision and fear of the US (greater than what there is now) causing other COUNTRIES (the political entities) to be very reluctant and cautious about crossing the U.S. in any public sense.

3) Meanwhile clerics throughout the middle east would have been condemning the actions of the U.S., especially the radical fundamentalist ones and preaching against us, even more than now, and inciting jihad

4) Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups would have gained more sympathizers and willing participants throughout the middle east, Europe, Africa, and other parts of the world.

5) There would have been no reduction in the number of terrorist operations around the world, and in fact the number might have increased from what it has been. The activities would have been varied in levels of organization and competence due to so many new players getting involved.

6) A number of new terrorist organizations may have formed. Our efforts against terrorism would have been diffused over a wider area and through the need to track a larger number of participants.

7) The deadliest of terrorist organizations - Al Qaeda would have survived, as they have under current circumstances and perhaps would have gained in strength.

8) In the years after our total war style assault on Iraq, we would have either had a huge rebuilding project on our hands there (bigger than now) or we would have left it to them and the population would have been decimated by disease, starvation, exposure, etc.
In that acse, Iran probably would have moved in to reform what was left of Iraq as a puppet of theirs.

9) Long term the War on Terror would have been just as large and complex, maybe more so, even though the political entities would have been cowed to a greater extent by the U.S."

and

10) United States embassies burned by angry mobs throughout Islamic Countries of the World.

11)99.9% of the 1.2 billion followers of Islam becoming anti-American.

12)Oil cut off the United States from Islamic countries for fear of Islamic Revolutions.

13)Expanded war in the Middle East as Islamic countries send men, money, and arms to fight the American infidel invaders. War expands into Iran and Syria. Osama bin Ladins dream of an Islamic Empire begins to become a reality as American forces become over extended

14)Innocent American citizens attacked by angry mobs throughout Islamic World. Terrorist attacks on American citizens and property expands to non-Islamic countries. Limited terrorist attacks on American soil, habeas corpus suspended.

15)Oil cut off to any country allied with America.

16)And the worse case scenario. Expanded war in the Middle East, as Islamic countries send men, money, and arms to fight the American infidel invaders. War expands into Iran and Syria. Osama bin Ladins dream of an Islamic Empire begins to become a reality as American forces become over extended and more Islamic countries join in the war, including the nuclear armed Pakistan where the pro-American government was over thrown for supporting the United States.

The invasion of Iraq is a case in point that in the Middle East, more often than not, more problems arise than are resolved.

Posted by: Jamal | March 3, 2006 02:21 PM

Jamal,

Yes I probably am understating things. My purpose with that post was to devlop a logical sequence that would result from Chris Fords's assertion that the way to win the War on Terror, as with any war, is to pull out all the stops and engage in what he calls "total war". I can only suppose that he would respond to the scenario you and I combine to illustrate by saying that then we would initiate a military draft, raise a 2,000,000 man army, and begin applying those same total war tactics all across the middle east. I don't know if you have followed our thread of posts on this subjects across this and the previous of Emily's topics, but if you have you will have seen some of his claims and assertions regarding the prosecution of the War on Terror. One concept he touts is that the only way the War on Terror will be won is for the Islamic world to undergo a major trauma. I sincerely hope his is wrong.

Also in the previous thread of posts between Chris and myself you will find a proposed strategy I have laid out that seeks to win the War on Terror in a different way. It is based on targeting the terrorists as narrowly as possible, while reaching out and supporting viewpoints of those Muslims in the world that subscribe to a more civil form of relations in the world. My approach acknowledges differences in understandings, viewpoints, and values between the western cultures and the muslim cultures, but establishes forums for describing those differences and working on ways for our societies to deal with them constructively. Meanwhile we would be working together with many Muslim countries to hunt down and kill or capture known terrorists and to identify and neutralize the operation and development of terrorist recruitment and training activities.

I would be interested in hearing your comments, proposed improvements, changes, or additions to some of the plans I have set forth, particularly in Emily's topic thread that preceded this one.

DK

Posted by: DK | March 4, 2006 01:51 AM

Jamal,

The previous posts occur on Feb 26th thru the 28th and are on the Port Deal Pros and Cons topic.

Posted by: DK | March 4, 2006 02:16 AM

DK,

From memory I recall comparisons to the Roman Empire in the discussion to prove the point that "clubbing" country's that oppose your agenda will keep those countries under your control and set an example for other countries that might oppose you or simply "not be your friend".

I think our situation compares to the Roman Empire, excluding the Byzantine Empire. Rome was increasingly becoming over extended militarily, an Empire ruled by the iron fist. It was increasingly outsourcing, severely dependent on imports, and cheap labor, mostly slave. Most Romans refused to do menial tasks. The Roman Empire fell to less civilized, technologically inferior cultures. They lost battles on battle fields they were not trained or prepared to fight on. I see a strong comparison between the Roman Empire and the German Tribes to the United States and Islamic Countries. Note how Rome trained German tribesman only to later have the training used against them.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Teutoburg_Forest

We're not building an Empire of Iron rule as the Romans did, but we are building an Empire of influence by military means.

As for us "clubbing" Japan and Germany after WWII, if I recall correctly it was those countries that started WWII by "clubbing" their neighbors. The clubbing strategy only got their countries destroyed.

Posted by: Jamal | March 4, 2006 10:31 AM

this is a terrible decision to put the UAE in charge of the port security...it could ruin our economy and kill thousands

Posted by: Miguel | March 30, 2006 09:15 PM

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