Thursday, April 24, 2014
Blog

Britain's Prince Harry has been fighting the Taliban--in secrecy, as far as the rest of the world (including the Talbian) was concerned until Matt Drudge broke the story today. The Daily Express reports:

The 23-year-old Household Cavalry officer has spent the past 10 weeks serving in war-ravaged Helmand Province.

The deployment had been cloaked in secrecy under a news blackout deal agreed across the UK media to prevent details reaching the Taliban and endangering Harry and his comrades.

But the arrangement broke down today after news was leaked out on the US website the Drudge Report.

Which was a lousy thing to do.

   



    After William F. Buckley, Jr. died this week, I was asked if I would be writing about him in Friday’s column. No, I replied, realizing I didn’t feel I had much to say about him that wouldn’t be much more vividly expressed by those who had known and worked for him. I never had the pleasure of meeting him; I have never written for National Review. I did attend Yale—and as a student with conservative views—so I feel some loose connection to what I know of the ideas expressed in God and Man at Yale. Still, my first editorial job was working for Irving Kristol at The Public Interest, which placed me on the neoconservative side of opinion journalism, even if that is not where I find myself now.      In reading through some of the commentary on Buckley’s passing, we are all reminded of what a singular presence and force he was. I am also quite struck by the absence of anyone...

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Picked up on Hollywood's latest mass perfidy--Oscar-chic, orange lapel-ribbon solidarity for Gitmo jihadists--at the always-invigorating Atlas Shrugs. The Miami Herald spotted so many stars wearing their terror-sympathies on their Oscar outfits it was able to put together a slide show. It starts with Julie Christie (below).  Time to watch your favorite John Wayne  (Robert Montgomery, Robert Taylor, Jimmy Stewart, Ginger Rogers...) movie.

Will The Washington Times under its new editor John Solomon (late of the Washington Post) remain DC's "conservative" newspaper? Here are some new style rules:

"Hillary" must be called "Clinton" when she merits a headline. (By golly, this is a Serious newspaper, and Hillary, I mean, Clinton is a Serious senator....)

There is to be no further use of stylistic markers indicating political and cultural controversy over same-sex marriage.

And, most indicative of the new PC, the paper has determined that the untold millions of "illegal aliens" flouting this nation's laws (and effectively transforming an English-speaking people into a Spanish one) deserve a  significant euphemistic promotion: From hereon in, such "illegal aliens" are to be reported on as "illegal immigrants." What strikes me about the implication of such a name change, of course, is that only a little red tape separates such "immigrants" from legality.

Here, via Congressional Quarterly's Ground Game blog...

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Today is the birthday of Tex Avery (1908-1980), famous for producing Dat Wabbit (above), among other pop immortals. According to lore (does Wikipedia count as "lore"?), his catch-phrase as a student at North Dallas HIgh School (Class of 1927) was "What's up, doc?" The rest is cartoon history.

 

I've been reading Peter Brock's Media Cleansing--a white-hot excoriation of media malfeasance, laziness, gullibility, and mendaciousness in reporting the civil wars in what we came to know of in the 1990s as "the former Yugoslavia." The elemental, systematic misreporting of these wars that he uncovers at least rivals the misreporting of the Tet Offensive, and seems to have a more indelible quality, still defying revision all these years later.

While wondering what he might have to say about Kosovo--couldn't find anything--I came across this 2006 piece by Julia Gorin  weaving together  (shockingly) related topics including Musharraf, Daniel Pearl, Bill Clinton, MI-6, Serbia, Israel, OBL, being on the wrong side of the war on terror (Balkan front), and Peter Brock's book. She ends by quoting Gregory Copely on the Brock book, who wrote:

...

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Stuart Taylor considers the question in thought-provoking detail, kicking off from Sen. Obama's 2007 statement that his own daughters should be regarded as "folks who are pretty advantaged" by college admissions officers--and not as applicants requiring racial preference. As Taylor explains, if Obama is the Democratic nominee, racial preferences could become a hugely significant issue in the presidential campaign.

Here is an excerpt:

[Taylor hopes] to see Obama at least acknowledge that it's time to start phasing out racial preferences and replacing them with special consideration for promising low-income kids without regard to race. Indeed, Obama might need to go at least that far to win the general election if the Republicans are smart enough to shine a spotlight on the logical implications of his response to Stephanopoulos and of his post-racial campaign posture. The Republican nominee could say during the debates, or Republicans could...

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Andy McCarthy sees through some of the conventional confusion on Pakistan at The Corner: specifically, about Sen. Obama's alleged Bomb Pakistan's Jihadist Regions policy (which McCarthy guesses is completely insincere) and conservative scorn for said policy against "our ally Pakistan," which McCarthy notes is completey inconsistent with anti-jihad doctrine. This is particularly true now that Musharraf is on his way out (thanks to "democracy") and what McCarthy  calls "an amalgam of pro-jihadists and Leftists, united by their mutual legacy of corrupt governance" and willingness to enter into "dialogue" with jihadists is now taking power.

Addressing another Cornerite, McCarthy writes:

What you, Senator McCain, and others who spout this "our ally Pakistan" drivel have to explain is this:  If the rationale for continuing American combat operations in Iraq is, principally, that we cannot allow anti-Western...

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After police in Denmark discovered a plot to assassinate Kurt Westergaard, one of the 12 Danish Mo-toon creators (his is above), he and his wife had to abandon their home last November. Earlier this month, after Danish police arrested his three potential assassins, Westergaard and his wife were asked to leave their police-protected hotel. Now, reports Der Spiegel, they are HOMELESS. That's right. In the heart of Europe, an artist's life is threatened, his home-life destroyed, and now his sanctuary disrupted by what? Islam in the heart of Europe. And why? I'm going to answer by pulling a paragraph out of The Death of the Grown-Up (p. 204):...

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I ask this question after reading a report at Politico.com on her thesis written as a senior at Princeton. What did she write about? Well, not U.S. diplomacy between the World Wars;  Milton's heroic sonnets; or even female artists of the High Middle Ages. Four years at one of the finest liberal arts institutions in the world, and Michelle Obama comes out still examining her navel in an excercise called "Princeton-Educated Blacks and the Black Community."

I suppose it's become required reading (download links available within the Politico story), given its deeply political nature--one that appears to strike a harshly discordant note with her husband's campaign message of post-racial unity. 

From Politico:

 My experiences at Princeton have made me far more aware of my 'blackness' than ever before," the future Mrs. Obama wrote in her thesis introduction. "I have found that at Princeton, no matter how liberal and open-minded...

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At least the Obama campaign actually released Michelle's thesis.

Not only are we all still waiting for Hillary Clinton's White House records, but, as a sharp reader reminds me, her own college thesis has never been released. The late and lamented Barbara Olson writes in Hell to Pay:

The contents of HIllary's thesis, and why she would want it hidden from public view, have long been the subject of intense interest. Most likely, she does not want the American people to know the extent to which she internalized and assimilated the beliefs and methods of [infamous Marxist radical] Saul Alinsky...

Bright college years just ain't what they used to be.

 

 

 

Two pieces on The Surge today, one by Michael Kinsley, one by Charles Krauthammer. Bascially, Kinsley wonders what's so great about the surge if, by next summer we are only able to withdraw to the same troop levels we were at before it started. (Good question.) Krauthammer, on the other hand, sees the surge-wrought improvements in security and indications of what we know as "political progress" in Iraq and wonders why Democrats can't admit the surge is working. Kinsley's bottom line: So the best we can hope for, in terms of American troops risking their lives in Iraq, is that there will be just as many in July -- and probably in January, when time runs out -- as there were a year ago. The surge will have surged in and surged out, leaving us back where we started. Maybe the situation in Baghdad, or the whole country,...

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From Victor Davis Hanson:

Barack Obama may have gone to exclusive private schools. He and his wife may both be lawyers who between them have earned four expensive Ivy League degrees. They may make about a million dollars a year, live in an expensive home and send their kids to prep school. But they are still apparently first-hand witnesses to how the American dream has gone sour. Two other Ivy League lawyers, Hillary and Bill, are multimillionaires who have found America to be a land of riches beyond most people's imaginations. But Hillary also talks of the tragic lost dream of America. In these gloom-and-doom narratives by the well off, we less fortunate Americans are doing almost everything right, but still are not living as well as we deserve to be. And the common culprit is a government that is not doing enough good for us, and corporations that do too much bad to us.

And so, according to the Democratic...

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Patrick Poole provides a perfectly appalling preview of  the kind of answers Rep. Wolf should expect from Georgetown University about exactly what Saudi millions have bought from the school. The extent to which our universities and other institutions have been corrupted by Islamic oil wealth is a national scandal and dire security threat--not that anyone bothers to notice ("hope!" "change!" glug, glug).....

What is the expression...Behind every good man is a good malcontent?

Meanwhile, back at the Obama foreign policy shop, The American Thinker finds reason not to hope" but to shudder.  

Sen. Obama is now playing interpreter for his wife's revealing comments about lacking pride in the USA ... until now.

Here's what she said :

"For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country. And not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change."

When asked about her comments by a Texas radio station, he said:

 "What she meant was, this is the first time that she's been proud of the politics of America," he said. "Because she's pretty cynical about the political process, and with good reason, and she's not alone. But she has seen large numbers of people get involved in the process, and she's encouraged."

Oh, Happy Day! Michelle Obama is "encouraged" by   the "politics of America." And why not? Things have been looking up for her ever  since she was freed from the Gulag--I mean, graduated from Harvard Law School.

Let's just hope Sen. Obama...

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Douglas Farah takes note of a most significant letter from Rep. Frank Wolf (Virginia Republican) to the president of Georgetown University, John DeGioia. Rep. Wolf writes that he was perturbed by a December 2007 Washington Times story that reported on the millions Saudi "Prince" Alwaleed bin Talal--the same Saudi chieftain whose check Rudy turned down after 9/11--has bestowed on American universities. (Talal's oil-y largesse includes $20 million apiece to Harvard and Georgetown.) In the rest of the letter, Rep. Wolf is basically inquiring into whether Talal has gotten his (hush) money's worth from Georgetown.

This is an excellent question--particularly since, as Farah reminds us, the money went to Georgetown's Center For Muslim Christian Understanding "led by Dr. John Esposito,...

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A message to independent Kosovo from the Organization of the Islamic Conference--which, among other things, has brought the world the Cairo Declaration of Human Rights in Islam, a "human rights" document that, according to the theocratic dictates of  sharia (Islamic law), both sanctifies and institutionalizes the inequality of man:

The Islamic Umma wishes them success in their new battle awaiting them which is the building of a strong and prosperous a state capable of satisfying of its people. There is no doubt that the independence of Kosovo will be an asset to the Muslim world and further enhance the joint Islamic action.

No doubt.

   

In an excellent overview of the Kosovo-Serbian situation, Ruth King provides the background necessary to understand the significance of independent Kosovo (not provided by the MSM--naturally).
Implications? Not good. Here's one big fat reason:

Western leaders are blind to the danger to themselves in the principle they are establishing, namely that recent illegal immigrants from another state have the right to declare independence over territory long recognized as part of a different sovereign state whose inhabitants they have ruthlessly forced to flee.

As they say, read it all.

UPDATED:The world is indeed a far, far better place without arch-jihadist Imad Moughniyah, killed in Damascus this past week. Reading about the mourning and outrage his death has caused in the Middle East--a clanging exercise in culture clash for anybody without their PC earplugs on--I came across this:

Even Hizballah's political rivals, including U.S.-backed Sunni Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, Saad Hariri, son of the assassinated former prime minister Rafik Hariri, and the anti-Syrian March 14 group [see update below], offered condolences to Hizballah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah.

How about if we make it a new rule that any group offering "condolences" on account of this mass killer of Americans and Jews (and no doubt some American Jews) doesn't get U.S. support?

Maybe that's another question for...

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Robert Spencer wonders why this story isn't front-page news everywhere.

Here's the gist of it:

Saudi Arabia's rulers threatened to make it easier for terrorists to attack London unless corruption investigations into their arms deals were halted, according to court documents revealed yesterday.

The word "outrageous" is inadequate to describe such foul blackmail.

Now, some details:

Previously secret files describe how investigators were told they faced "another 7/7" and the loss of "British lives on British streets" if they pressed on with their inquiries and the Saudis carried out their threat to cut off intelligence. Prince Bandar, the head of the Saudi national security council, and son of the crown prince, was alleged in court to be the man behind the threats to hold back information about suicide bombers and terrorists. He faces accusations...

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Power Line notes the weird absence of widespread media coverage, let alone curiosity,  concerning why representatives of both the Clinton and Obama campaigns visited Damascus this week. Meanwhile, the campaigns have clammed up about it. Thankfully, the New York Sun asks:

Why are advisers to Senators Clinton and Obama in the Syrian capital at a time like this? Are they pressing for a separate peace with the regime? It is something on which Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton will be challenged in the coming campaign, we have little doubt. Where do they stand in respect of Syria — and why can't they bring themselves to explain what their advisers are doing in the capital of one of the countries most hostile to America and Israel?

To date, presidential campaign foreign policy debate has been nothing short of childish, with Republicans arguing over who supported the surge first and Democrats...

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Who deserves the $5 million reward for bringing down criminal-against-humanity Imad Moughniyah? 

Claudia Rosett  has double-checked with Gordon England's office about whether Hesham Islam has been dismissed. "Heavens, no!" said the office (or something like that). Hmmm. Who is coming to bat for Hesham Islam? Steven Emerson takes a look at one HI defender: Louay Safi, the director of Muslim Brotherhood-linked ISNA, who goes into a lather over the supposed  "McCarthyite" campaign he says is out to smear dear, sweet, minding-his-own-business-ousting-Stephen-Coughlin Hesham Islam.

Then again, didn't Joseph McCarthy say the government was riddled with communists? And wasn't the government riddled with communists? "McCarthyism" has become a buzz word for "shut up," but thanks to books like M. Stanton Evans'  Blacklisted by History,...

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The affront to British dignity caused by the Archbishop of Canterbury when he affirmed the arrival of  sharia into GB in a BBC interview last week  is something to behold. That is, while we hear stentorian tones about "only one law for Britain" and all that, it is still the case that one-law Britain has been vigorously making way for sharia for a long time. Recent news stories tell us, for example, that polygamous marriages are now eligible for welfare assistance (as in multiple wives will recieve benefits) even as polygamy is a crime in GB, while Prime MInister Gordon Brown--he of the one-law-for-Britain comment--has made it his mission to make London the global center of Islamic finance--namely, finance according to sharia. De facto sharia courts exist in every major British city, and the British government recently called off a corruption case involving arms sales and Saudi Arabia, which doesn't exactly sound like a validation of the Magna Carta to me.

Now this.

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Worldnetdaily.com reports:

In a stunning turn of events, a high-level Muslim military aide blamed for costing an intelligence contractor his job will step down from his own Pentagon post, WND has learned. Meanwhile, his rival, Maj. Stephen Coughlin, a leading authority on Islamic war doctrine, may stay in the Pentagon, moving from the office of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to the office of the secretary of defense. However, sources say a former U.S. ambassador to Turkey is trying to block his new contract.

The "high-level Muslim military aide," of course, is Hesham Islam. I heard something similar over the weekend--namely, that HI would "step down" in such a way as to avoid linkage between his departure and his efforts to silence Stephen Coughlin's legal teachings that highlight the failure of the Pentagon to assess, acknowledge or even examine the links between Islamic law and the so-called war on terror....

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I'll be CBC Radio's "Sunday Edition"  today, where host Michael Enright asks "two ultra-conservatives why their cause is on life support." (David Frum is the other.)

The Archbishop of Canterbury says sharia law in England "seems unavoidable."

Read and weep.

ABC's Jake Tapper find liberals who are starting to get creeped-out by Sen. Obama inspirational message. Very interesting.

He writes:

It's as if Tom Daschle descended from on high saying, Be not afraid; for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all the people: for there is born to you this day in the city of CHicago a savior, who is Barack the Democrat.

Obama supporter Kathleen Geier writes that she's "getting increasingly weirded out by some of Obama's supporters. On listservs I'm on, some people who know better--hard-bitten, not-so-young cynics, even--are gushing about Barack ... Excuse me, but this sounds more like a cult than a political campaign. The language used here is the language of evangelical Christianity--the Obama volunteers speak of `coming to Obama' in the same way born-again Christians talk about `coming to Jesus.'"

...

Joe Klein, writing at Time,...

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Defense Secretary Gates has been spending much of his time cajoling NATO allies to please, please send soldiers who can actually shoot to Afghanistan, where 27,000 US troops (who shoot) and 28,000 others (who don't shoot much) from assorted NATO countries  make up the international forces still trying to stabilize the country six-plus years after the initial US invasion. The Washington Post describes the situation this way: "Although coalition forces have defeated the Taliban in many tactical engagements, analysts say NATO remains in a `strategic stalemate' because of lagging reconstruction and governance efforts."

So, if only the coaltion could reconstruct the country and teach Afghans to govern, everything would be ok, right? Sounds like a John McCain special --another 100-year occupation, which he has said may be necessary for to  stabilize Iraq.

I don't think "quagmire"...

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This one totally passed me by:

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., was the most liberal senator in 2007, according to National Journal's 27th annual vote ratings. The insurgent presidential candidate shifted further to the left last year in the run-up to the primaries, after ranking as the 16th- and 10th-most-liberal during his first two years in the Senate. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., the other front-runner in the Democratic presidential race, also shifted to the left last year. She ranked as the 16th-most-liberal senator in the 2007 ratings, a computer-assisted analysis that used 99 key Senate votes, selected by NJ reporters and editors, to place every senator on a liberal-to-conservative scale in each of three issue categories. In 2006, Clinton was the 32nd-most-liberal senator.

,,,

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., the only other senator whose presidential candidacy survived the initial round of primaries and caucuses this year, did...

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Andrew Bostom updates the Stephen Coughlin affair on receipt of a statement by Rep. Sue Myrick, North Carolina Republican, who has been looking into Coughlin's termination.

The good news is that Stephen Coughlin has a new post and will continue lecturing the military on jihad.

The bad news is that Myrick has determined that everybody who's been sounding the alarm over evidence of pro-jihad penetration at the Pentagon--among them Bill Gertz, Claudia Rosett, Steven Emerson, Frank Gaffney, Andrew Bostom and Yours Truly--is wrong. 

Fox News reports:

LONDON —  Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Tuesday she will raise with Afghanistan's U.S.-backed president the case of an Afghan reporter sentenced to death for insulting Islam, a case that has not drawn the same wide U.S. outrage or administration intervention as one involving a Muslim condemned to death for converting to Christianity. "This is a young democracy," Rice said. "It won't surprise you that we are not supportive of everything that comes up through the judicial system in Afghanistan, and I do think that the Afghans understand that there are some international norms that need to be respected."

A sharp-eyed reader writes: "Really? They understand that? Gosh."

I share the skepticism.

Putting citizens to death for "insulting Islam" has nothing to do with being a  "young democracy." (I don't recall the young United States, for example, going through the death-for-blasphemy stage in those early years after the Constitution was ratified.) The fact is,...

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And no, I'm not talking about conservatives.

My good friend Michelle Malkin analyzes Hillary Clinton's Hispanic appeal, reminding us of President Bill Clinton's manipulation of the INS in order to expedite the naturalization of some one million new (Hispanic and Democratic) voters--some of whom were flat-out ineligible due to criminal records and other reasons.

I suspect that this Hispanic edge, along with Hillary's capacity to draw out the womanic vote--women who vote for (liberal) women because they are women--will in the end win her the Democratic nomination.

(Seemingly missing in Democratic minority calculations is the Jewish vote, once of great concern to Democratic candidates  who competed to show concern for Israel's  security. No more. Now concern is for the "peace process"--a disaster for Israel's security.

 

 

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..."Gitmo Lawyers for Obama" and "Radical Muslims for Obama."

Hmmm.  

Steven Emerson fills in some of the blanks about what exactly Pentagon aide Hesham Islam does--besides  trying to put the kybosh on the truth about Islamic jihad--as Deputy Secretary of Defense Gordon England's "personal close confidante." (Basically, a whole lot of Muslim-Brotherhood connected "outreach"--and in direct contravention of stated US policy.)

 

 

Watch Palestinians in Gaza celebrate the double suicide attack in Dimona Monday by passing out flowers and candy, while giving praise to Allah here.

I have been meaning to write about a terrific essay by John David Lewis called " `Gifts from Heaven': The Meaning of the American Victory over Japan, 1945" published by The Objective Standard. I’m glad to see Andrew Bostom has written an excellent appraisal of the piece. An assessment of  both the American victory and, even more illuminating, the American occupation of Japan, Lewis' essay focuses exclusively on our past. But it offers illuminating contrasts to our current travails in the Middle East, particularly given the historic challenges posed by the animating, warlike state religion of Shinto, and its obvious similarities to the animating, warlike state religion of Islam. Back then, the American government was of one mind when it came to assessing the dangerously aggressive creed of state Shintoism....

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Here, via View from the Right, is a transcript of a 2000 telephone interview  Michael Reagan conducted with John McCain. It's a short call: McCain blows up; Reagan hangs up. But it says a lot (too much) about McCain. In past years, we've seen a great deal about "Bush Derangement Syndrome," which describes the anger consuming President Bush's opponents. (Full disclosure: I've felt my share in recent years). With John McCain, I think we would see a new affliction: "McCain Rage Syndrome"--the anger consuming John McCain himself. 

As focused as the media are on Super Tuesday, they--the vast majority of whom, infamously, are Democratic voters--have already determined precisely how Republicans will vote in the primaries: namely, that they will propel McCain to victory. The thrust of the analysis/spin has already turned to whether conservatives will coalesce behind McCain in November.

I would like to remind conservatives that these decisive primaries on Super Tuesday and beyond  haven't taken place; our dear pollsters have been crashingly wrong time and time again (including in this current election cycle); and Mitt Romney, who has emerged as the obvious conservative choice, is on the ballot. Please read Mark Levin's compelling explanation why conservatives should vote for Romney NOW before they consider McCain in November.    

Bill Gertz reports today on Pentagon damage control on Hesham Islam and his dodgy resume, as revealed by Claudia Rosett. The Pentagon is looking into conflicting statements about the background of Hesham Islam, a special assistant to Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England who was the focus of a dispute with a Joint Staff counterterrorism analyst. Mr. Islam faced tough questions about his background posed by veteran journalist Claudia Rosett, a former Wall Street Journal reporter who covered the United Nations oil-for-food scandal with Iraq. Last week, Miss Rosett took the Pentagon to task by uncovering serious discrepancies about the Egyptian-born Islam that no one at the Pentagon seems willing to answer. Writing in National Review Online, Miss Rosett revealed that certain claims about Mr. Islam's background...

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