When I heard about the cult in Miami that was supposedly going to blow up the Sears Tower in Chicago, I immediately assumed Attorney General Alberto Gonzales was hyping the arrest of terrorist wannabes to scare us back into the arms of the Bush administration. The more I read the more I'm convinced that I'm right.
Or as columnist Ellis Hennican says in Newsday:
These wild-eyed wannabes are America's real terror threat? We should be so lucky.Juan Cole presents his usual clear-headed discussion of the situation on Informed Comment. He also points out that these guys aren't Muslims:
It seems pretty obvious that they are just a local African-American cult which mixed Judaism, Christianity and (a little bit of) Islam.As In This Moment's Pamela Taylor points out, Muslims and non-Muslims have "far more in common than is usually perceived." Incorrectly labeling as "Muslim" a group arrested for terrorism doesn't help the general lack of understanding.
Legal blogger Andrew Cohen of The Washington Post reminds us:
The thing to remember as you absorb all of these terror-law announcements is that the government has a sorry record in these cases of overselling what it has just accomplished.Speaking of The Washington Post, there's a detailed report in Sunday's paper on how the Bush administration bought into false intelligence from Iraqi con artist code-named "curveball." This is the kind of detailed investigative reporting the Post does best. Too bad they waited until several years into the Bush administration to start doing it.
Of course, their sources is a recently retired veteran CIA officer, Tyler Drumheller, who is now writing a book. I suspect he didn't start talking until after he retired. I'm glad he's talking now, but I wish he'd gone public back before we went to war in 2003. This country could use more government officials willing to quit their jobs on principle and tell the country what's going on.
It's a hard thing to do; nobody likes a whistleblower. Anybody who does it could be sacrificing a good chunk of pension money in an uncertain economy and might find it very hard to get another job. But in the spirit of "asking what you can do for your country," we need people who are willing to make those kind of sacrifices to help save our country from the incredible damage done by the Bush regime.
Also in Sunday's Post, Richard Perle, one of the architects of the horrendous mess in Iraq, is lambasting the Bush administration for "dithering" on Iran. I gather he'd like -- to use words made famous during another US debacle, Vietnam -- to "bomb them back to the stone age." Here's the best line from his story: "The mullahs don't blink -- they glare."
The good news is that he's advocating this position in the newspaper, instead of behind closed doors at the Pentagon. With luck, enough people in power have learned not to listen to him. I'll keep my fingers crossed.
Last, but certainly not least, here's Juan Cole again, this time providing a translation of a report on the situation of women in Iraq. Women are losing their political representation, at increased risk from violence, and even being targeted for shopping. Yes, indeedy, we're making Iraq a democratic state.