Posts

Showing posts from December 24, 2006

Iraq, Al-Qaeda and the Tribes

Turning Iraq's Tribes Against Al-Qaeda

The article talks about Tribes in Iraq have mutated over time in Iraq and now most of them are firmly allied against Al-Qaeda. The article notes that tribes are like nations. They don't have friends, they have interests. The Marines also duly note that the political winds can change quickly and it would be best to capitalize on our confluent interests now.

One common thread that seems to gird articles by pro and anti-war articles is how unreliable the Iraqi Police are. It appears that they are overrun by militia members who keep their loyalty to their Imam but wear a different uniform. Theocrats the likes of which are running rampant in Andrew Sullivan's feverish imaginings of the Bush Administration.


Hitchens also notes dryly:


A young Marine officer stationed in one of the toughest parts of a very tough province, a man known to me for his hostility to bullshit, insists that American forces are "kicking the shit out of al-Qaid…

Doomsaying as industry

http://scienceblogs.com/nosenada/2006/12/so_what_happened_at_agu_last_w.php

So what happened at AGU last week?


What I am starting to hear is internal backlash. Sure, science is messy and always full of tension between holders of competing positions, opinions and analyses. That has always been the nature of science, and of course extends to climate science. Tensions come out at meetings, on listservs, on letters pages, and in the press. But these tensions normally surround a particular paper, or a particular question. While much more broadly-based tensions have existed for years on the state of understanding on global warming, they haven't really been tensions internal to the climsci community, but tensions between the climsci community and interested outsiders.

What I am sensing now is something much broader and more diffuse, something that has less to do with particular components of the science in the field and is much more about how the field is composing itself.

What I see is some…

Paragon of journalism

I normally don't enter into the fracas between blogs and the MSM as it seems as pointless as a DVD rewinder. However, I do tire of MSM opinion columnists decrying blogs as pointless blather. Especially when our own paper is running items like this:

Smoking is especially bad around kids
I guess I'm not a professional because I don't address the hard topics that require lots of study.