Wikileaks – 3 days out

I like to suss these things out over time.

Manning should be in jail, and is.
Assange, hmm, Assange……….Manning should be in jail.

The leaks seem to say (and I am not an avid reader of these) US diplomats think they are better than everyone and that they work to finely tweak relations to “play” the world and bend it to our will which turns out to be peaceful and not overly power hungry.

John Poderhetz notes this:

The cables I’ve read so far show our diplomats trying to make sense of a Bizarro World in which the United States tends to say what it means while almost every other nation is essentially allergic to candor or straight talk.
Arab potentates say exactly the same things the Israelis say about the Iranians and their intentions — but won’t say them out loud in public, nor lift a finger themselves. The Chinese whine about oil and Iran, and we help them with the Saudis.

Which is pretty much what we thought.

Concerning my big subject of last year, Honduras, Wikileaks has a HUGE diplomatic cable (not).
Essentially it says what the news said at the time. The US assumed that Honduras had a “coup”, when it did not.

Richard Cohen seems to think that the Wikileaks proves Bush an inept president and liar. How? Because it shows that the Arab world thinks that Iraq will just become a pawn of Iran if we oust Sadaam.

When, for instance, Bush attempts to justify the Iraq war by saying the world is a better place without Saddam Hussein, Assange could reach into his bag of leaked U.S. government cables and cite Saudi King Abdullah’s private observation that the war had given Iraq to Iran as a “gift on a golden platter.”

I’m pretty certain that Bush knew this was a possibility and if Mr. Cohen could reach into his bag of lefty ideals BB (before Bush) he might note the left really being disgusted with US foreign policy that supported evil dictators in order to keep a “global order” that may or may not be the best be in the best interests of the globe.

And finally……Wikileaks seems to have found one of it’s first actual victims. Prof. Majid Shahriari died in Iran less than 12 hours after the leaks were out. He was heading the ‘combat Stuxnet’ team in Iran.
(ht Maggie’s Farm)

The attacks occurred at 7.45 a.m. Iranian time, less than 12 hours after the WikiLeaks organization uncovered US diplomatic cables attesting to a proposal by Mossad director Meir Dagan to overthrow the Islamic regime as one of the ways of terminating its nuclear program. He proposed enlisting oppressed Iranian minority groups for the task, like the Baluchis and their liberation movement, Jundallah.
Our intelligence sources note that this was the fifth attack in two years on Iranian nuclear scientists in Tehran. None of the perpetrators were ever apprehended. Some sources suggest that the latest double hit may have been the work of Jundallah, which recently began targeting nuclear scientists serving the hated regime and which two months ago reported abducting a scientist employed at the Isfahan nuclear facility.
Tehran played down that incident claiming the kidnapped man was a driver. But last week he appeared on the Saudi TV station Al Arabiya and described his nuclear work.

I don’t think the tweets/cables/emails/letters to Wikileaks begging Assange not to release more will do much. However, if he starts going after the bankers, maybe we’ll see a real powerplay!
Then the “bankers control the world” paradigm will really take off.

UPDATE: This was a good post (ht Instapundit), again showing no surprise in the messages but disappointment that diplomacy will no longer be as honest/open – or perhaps it will be by telephone instead of writings in which case history is at a loss.
Anyway – Pejman Yousefzadeh gets “Quote of the Day” recognition:

The plural of “anecdote” is not “data,”

Love that!
Go read his column. It’s good.

National Opt Out Day

Frankly, if you’re purposefully slowing down the line even though you travel once or twice a year and yet are frightened of the radiation or worried someone might “touch your junk”, I’m going to be annoyed at you and not TSA.

This was a reasonable post on the whole affair and probably the closest proximity to my undigested thoughts on it at this time.

UPDATE: Glen Reynolds makes sense too. I don’t fly enough to have a huge opinion here, but maybe a “frequent flyer” type of ID might be helpful too.

Awaiting Help from China in the DPRK case

Don’t count on it.

Here’s their front page today:

And from the Washington Post:

Our defaults are different. They’re seeing a South Korea escalating relations by firing artillery at the north and we see S. Korea forced into “high alert” while we face “tough choices”.

“The Brutal Afghan Winter”

I do love it when my own biases get squashed.

The title of this post is “the Brutal Afghan Winter” and it alludes to the beginning stages of war when the media was pretty sure that the winter would send us scrambling for home in the first months. That didn’t happen. We’re still there.

Since that time another media paradigm has embedded itself into my psyche. When I think of Afghans I think of “barely literate clerics from the countryside ” [a direct quote from the NYTimes]. In reality I don’t assume the uneducated are idiotic. But in general I think of a simple people engaging in war over there.
My bad.

Apparently one of these simple farmers took it upon himself to pretend he was a leader of the Taliban and negotiate a peace gaining himself a log of money in the process!

For months, the secret talks unfolding between Taliban and Afghan leaders to end the war appeared to be showing promise, if only because of the appearance of a certain insurgent leader at one end of the table: Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour, one of the most senior commanders in the Taliban movement.

But now, it turns out, Mr. Mansour was apparently not Mr. Mansour at all.

Now that is wily.
What’s even more bizarre….here’s the ending to the NYTimes story about this man.

Whatever the Afghan man’s identity, the talks that unfolded between the Americans and the man claiming to be Mr. Mansour seemed substantive, the Afghan leader said. The man claiming to be representing the Taliban laid down several surprisingly moderate conditions for a peace settlement: that the Taliban leadership be allowed to safely return to Afghanistan, that Taliban soldiers be offered jobs, and that prisoners be released.

Why does this matter?? !

UPDATE: Karzai denies being duped.

“I did not see Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour and Mullah Mansour did not come to Afghanistan. Don’t accept this news from the foreign press regarding meetings with the elders of the Taliban because most of them are propaganda,” Karzai said.

Friday Fun

Off to here for the weekend. Here’s hoping that by now the dog realizes he’s with me and can be off leash, because….look…..a dog could have some serious fun here.