World War IV Daily

2.14.2006

2.14.2006

Sorry for the late posting, I had a lot of catching up to do. She's a lengthy one today....

Where are the WMD? >>> I know, even mentioning WMDs these days brings up the inevitable request to 'cease and desist your continued physical assaults on that deceased equine mammal', or some derivative thereof. However, seeing as we went to war over this issue, I think the horse deserves a few more kicks. Now, we know that Saddam possessed these weapons at some point--he used them during the Iran-Iraq War and at Halabja in 1988--and we know that he refused to cooperate with UN inspectors during the '90s concerning the whereabouts of these weapons. In short, the question we should be asking--because we aren't--is where did these weapons go? Were they all destroyed during Desert Storm and by subsequent UN inspections? Maybe, though no conclusive proof exists. Shipped off to Syria? Quite possibly. Maybe even by Russian Spetsnaz? That would certainly merit a cover-up. Did Saddam even have the weapons he thought he did? Now that would be ironic. Or are they still in Iraq? David Gaubatz thinks so. All of these theories are probable--the Russian Spetsnaz idea is a little far-fetched, but it certainly sounds exciting--and are mutually exclusive. So what gives? Why is nobody else asking this question? Could it be because the answer appears to be non-existent? If you read through the theories above, you'll fit into either of two categories: You're suddenly curious and wondering why this story has been written off so quickly, or you're hopelessly confused by the massive amount of conflicting information and you just don't care anymore. I wouldn't blame you.

The Arabic Gap >>> All I can say is that I hope that these kids taking Arabic in high school and college stick with it; and that we can make do until they graduate.

US Prepares Strike Against Iran >>> At this point, considering the failure of diplomatic measures to elicit a positive response from the Iranians, military action seems inevitable. Somewhat surprisingly, 57% of Americans would support such action. I have predicted in the past that Israel would launch a unilateral strike on Iran near the end of March, especially given the recent Hamas victory in Palestine, which could make Benjamin Netanyahu the resounding victor in Israel's March 28th elections. Netanyahu has already made it clear that he plans to launch a pre-emptive strike on Iran. However, the prevailing wisdom now seems to be that such a strike would be best undertaken by the United States, and not simply for the political wisdom of keeping Jewish Israel out of a war with Muslim Iran. Such an attack would be extremely complicated, as this report from Security Watchtower illustrates. (I love how it puts the Sunday Telegraph's graphic to shame in terms of detail.) Though the US could probably pull off the attack, Israel certainly lacks the resources to do so, and their unique political situation effectively sidelines them. This burden falls upon the United States. Sadly, I feel that this is inevitable. I continue to believe that March-April 2006 will be--as an Israeli defense official described it--the 'point of no return'. Furthermore, it will certainly be costly, but I do think that this is an exaggeration.

Behind the Bomb Makers >>> An excellent article from Defense Technology International--in a cool online magazine format--with some very interesting background on the IED threat in Iraq. In related news, check out the IED Ray Gun. Woo hoo! Lasers!

Jamaat ul-Fuqra: The CP/NIN Report
>>> (Link is in PDF format.) For several months now--almost as long as I've been running this blog--I have covered numerous reports concerning Jamaat ul-Fuqra, a domestic Islamic terrorist organization. These reports stretched over the period of many months, spearheaded largely by Gates of Vienna and The Politics of CP. CP led the way with numerous investigations into individual JF compounds--which I linked to as they were posted--based almost exclusively on open-source information. Now CP has teamed up with the Northeast Intelligence Network in researching and releasing a comprehensive report concerning Jamaat ul-Fuqra. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the NIN, they run an extremely polished and almost unbelievably informative site. In fact, many of the stories they report on take place on such a local level that they are effectively ignored by the rest of the media and the blogosphere. Honestly, the first time I stopped by the NIN, I was skeptical of their reports, at least until I studied their supporting information. Now they are one of my daily reads and they occupy the highest realm of my recommendations. I will be posting a more in-depth analysis of the CP/NIN report this weekend, but until then you can read it here in PDF format. If you have no idea what Jamaat ul-Fuqra is, CP has assembled a digest of coverage spanning back to mid-October 2005 when this whole story was first uncovered. Start there.

Obligatory Dick Cheney Link >>> Sorry, I just had to mention this. Seriously though, whatever happened to gun safety?

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