The Talk Show American

THE TALK SHOW AMERICAN: 07/20/2008 - 07/27/2008

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Majority Support Military Tribunals For Terrorists

Most Americans believe suspected terrorists should be tried by military tribunals rather than in U.S. courts, as the first such trial began this week at the Guantanamo Naval Base in Cuba.

Seventy-one percent (71%) say the suspects should not be given the rights U.S. citizens have in court, while only 18% think they should, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national survey.

While some politicians, foreign officials and non-government groups like Amnesty International argue that the Bush administration is acting outside of the law in its treatment of these terrorist suspects, just 30% of Americans believe they should have access to U.S. courts, as opposed to 54% who favor the special military trials.

Nearly six out of 10 Americans (59%) also say the special prison camp for terrorists at Guantanamo, where the United States now detains 280 inmates, should not be closed. Twenty-six percent (26%) believe it should be.

Bin Laden Described Target of United 93 As "The Dome"

In his opening statement in the military commission trial of Osama Bin Laden's former driver, Salim Hamdan, the prosecutor said he would show that Hamdan heard Bin Laden describe the target of United Flight 93.

According to the prosecutor, Bin Laden had said the plane was headed for "the dome," apparently in reference to the U.S. Capitol.

Hamdan, who was detained in November, 2001, is charged with conspiracy and providing material support for terrorism. He faces a potential life term if convicted.

Separately, five men accused of organizing the 9/11 attacks are awaiting trial for the deaths of some 3,000 people.

Hamdan was captured in Afghanistan by the Afghans. He was transferred to Gitmo where he was interrogated by an FBI agent three times.

Each time he was tortured(sac) by the FBI agent by bringing him McDonald's fish sandwiches, (there's a Mickey D's, Pizza Hut and Starbucks in Gitmo) a car magazine, and allowing him to call his wife.

Oh, the horror of it all, that poor man. (sac)

Of course the NYT tries to tarnish the story by noting the differences between civilian trials and those held by the military commission. The NYT pointed out that the FBI agent did not advise Hamdan that he did not have to incriminate himself, because in Gitmo the agent didn't have to.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Majority: US Winning the War on Terror

Over half of American voters (51%) now believe the United States and its allies are winning the war on terror, the highest figure recorded in nearly four years by Rasmussen Reports in a nationwide survey.

Last July, just 36% thought the U.S. and its allies were winning. At that time, an equal number-36%--thought the terrorists were ahead.

Other indicators in the survey also show that Americans have growing confidence that things are looking up in the war on terror.

Forty-two percent (42%) now think the situation in Iraq will improve over the next six months. That's up from 37% a week ago and 23% a year ago.

Only 23% now expect things to get worse in Iraq, down from 49% last July.

The gap also is narrowing dramatically between those who think history will judge the war in Iraq as a success - 36% now - versus those who think it will be viewed as a failure (39%).

Now 35 points separate those who think the U.S. is ahead as opposed to the terrorists.

For the first time in months, more Democrats (35%) also think the U.S. is winning versus the number who credit the terrorists with being ahead (26%), although nearly a third (31%) are undecided. Last week, only 27% of Democrats thought the U.S. was winning.

Still in new polling this week McCain is again trusted by voters more than Obama when it comes to Iraq and the broader issue of national security.

Now 61% of men think the U.S. and its allies are winning the war on terror, up from 54% last week and 49% the week before. The number of women who agree has held steady at 43% for two weeks in a row, up from 37% a week earlier.

The percentage of Republicans who see the U.S. and its allies ahead also stayed roughly the same at 78%. Forty-five percent (45%) of unaffiliated voters, a bloc critical to the upcoming presidential election, agree, up two percentage points from a week earlier and 36% the week before that.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Talk Show America 7/21/2008

What if We Won A War and the Main Stream News Media Didn't Report It ?, We Are Winning the War on Terror !

We're Winning The War On Terror

The evidence is now overwhelming that on all fronts, despite inevitable losses from time to time, it is we who are advancing and the enemy who is in retreat. The current mood on both sides of the Atlantic, in fact, represents a kind of curious inversion of the great French soldier's dictum:
"Success against the Taliban. Enemy giving way in Iraq. Al-Qaeda on the run. Situation dire. Let's retreat!"

Since it is remarkable how pervasive this pessimism is, it's worth recapping what has been achieved in the past few years.

Afghanistan has been a signal success. There has been much focus on the latest counter-offensive by the Taleban in the southeast of the country and it would be churlish to minimise the ferocity with which the terrorists are fighting, but it would be much more foolish to understate the scale of the continuing Nato achievement. Establishing a stable government for the whole nation is painstaking work, years in the making. It might never be completed. But that was not the principal objective of the war there.

Until the US-led invasion in 2001, Afghanistan was the cockpit of ascendant Islamist terrorism. Consider the bigger picture. Between 1998 and 2005 there were five big terrorist attacks against Western targets - the bombings of the US embassies in Africa in 1998, the attack on the USS Cole in 2000, 9/11, and the Madrid and London bombings in 2004 and 2005. All owed their success either exclusively or largely to Afghanistan's status as a training and planning base for al-Qaeda.

In the past three years there has been no attack on anything like that scale. Al-Qaeda has been driven into a state of permanent flight. Its ability to train jihadists has been severely compromised; its financial networks have been ripped apart. Thousands of its activists and enablers have been killed. It's true that Osama bin Laden's forces have been regrouping in the border areas of Pakistan but their ability to orchestrate mass terrorism there is severely attenuated. And there are encouraging signs that Pakistanis are starting to take to the offensive against them.

Next time you hear someone say that the war in Afghanistan is an exercise in futility ask them this:
do they seriously think that if the US and its allies had not ousted the Taleban and sustained an offensive against them for six years that there would have been no more terrorist attacks in the West?
What characterised Islamist terrorism before the Afghan war was increasing sophistication, boldness and terrifying efficiency. What has characterised the terrorist attacks in the past few years has been their crudeness, insignificance and a faintly comical ineptitude (remember Glasgow airport?)

The second great advance in the War on Terror has been in Iraq. There's no need to recapitulate the disasters of the US-led war from the fall of Saddam Hussein in April 2003 to his execution at the end of 2006. We may never fully make up for three and a half lost years of hubris and incompetence but in the last 18 months the change has been startling.

The "surge", despite all the doubts and derision at the time, has been a triumph of US military planning and execution. Political progress was slower in coming but is now evident too. The Iraqi leadership has shown great courage and dispatch in extirpating extremists and a growing willingness even to turn on Shia militias. Basra is more peaceful and safer than it has been since before the British moved in. Despite setbacks such as yesterday's bombings, the streets of Iraq's cities are calmer and safer than they have been in years. Seventy companies have bid for oil contracts from the Iraqi Government. There are signs of a real political reconciliation that may reach fruition in the election later this year.

The third and perhaps most significant advance of all in the War on Terror is the discrediting of the Islamist creed and its appeal.

This was first of all evident in Iraq, where the head-hacking frenzy of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and his associates so alienated the majority of Muslims that it gave rise to the so-called Sunni Awakening that enabled the surge to be so effective.

But it has spread way beyond Iraq. As Lawrence Wright described in an important piece in The New Yorker last month, there is growing disgust not just among moderate Muslims but even among other jihadists at the extremism of the terrorists.

Deeply encouraging has been the widespread revulsion in Muslim communities in Europe - especially in Britain after the 7/7 attacks of three years ago. Some of the biggest intelligence breakthroughs in the past few years have been achieved from former al-Qaeda supporters who have turned against the movement.

There ought to be no surprise here.
It's only their apologists in the Western media who really failed to see the intrinsic evil of Islamists.
Those who have had to live with it have never been in much doubt about what it represents. Ask the people of Iran. Or those who fled the horrors of Afghanistan under the Taleban.

This is why we fight. Primarily, of course, to protect ourselves from the immediate threat of terrorist carnage, but also because we know that extending the embrace of a civilisation that liberates everyone makes us all safer.

Every death is an unspeakable tragedy. It's right that each time a soldier is killed in action we ask why. Was it really worth it?

The right response to the loss of brave souls such as Corporal Sarah Bryant, the first British woman to die in Afghanistan, is not an immediate call for retreat. It is, first of all, pride; a great, deep conviction that it is on such sacrifice that our own freedoms have always rested. Then, defiance. How foolish is the enemy that it might think our grief is really some prelude to their victory? Finally, confidence. We are prevailing in this struggle. We know it. And everywhere: in Afghanistan, in Iraq, and among Muslims around the world, the enemy knows it too.

What If We Won A War and The Media Didn't Report It ?

This editorial was published by Investor's Business Daily in regards to an article published by The London Sunday Times:

Apparently, we have to rely on a British newspaper for the news that we've defeated the last remnants of al-Qaida in Iraq.

London's Sunday Times called it "the culmination of one of the most spectacular victories of the war on terror." A terrorist force that once numbered more than 12,000, with strongholds in the west and central regions of Iraq, has over two years been reduced to a mere 1,200 fighters, backed against the wall in the northern city of Mosul.

The destruction of al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI) is one of the most unlikely and unforeseen events in the long history of American warfare. We can thank President Bush's surge strategy, in which he bucked both Republican and Democratic leaders in Washington by increasing our forces there instead of surrendering.

We can also thank the leadership of the new general he placed in charge there, David Petraeus, who may be the foremost expert in the world on counter-insurgency warfare. And we can thank those serving in our military in Iraq who engaged local Iraqi tribal leaders and convinced them America was their friend and AQI their enemy.

Now, in Operation Lion's Roar the Iraqi army and the U.S. 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment is destroying the fraction of terrorists who are left. More than 1,000 AQI operatives have already been apprehended.

Meanwhile, the State Department reports that Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's government has achieved "satisfactory" progress on 15 of the 18 political benchmarks - a big change for the better from a year ago.

Things are going so well that Maliki has even for the first time floated the idea of a timetable for withdrawal of American forces. He did so while visiting the United Arab Emirates, which over the weekend announced that it was forgiving almost $7 billion of debt owed by Baghdad - an impressive vote of confidence from a fellow Arab state in the future of a free Iraq.

The war in Iraq has been turned around 180 degrees both militarily and politically because the president stuck to his guns. Yet apart from IBD, Fox News Channel and parts of the foreign press, the media don't seem to consider this historic event a big story.