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This is the personal weblog of Aakash Raut, established Sept. 2002. It will cover current affairs, worldwide & national topics, local & university events, and provide insight and commentary on contemporary issues and the news from his perspective. Enjoy!

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    Sunday, February 29, 2004

    Note (3/9/04): The entries dated for Sun., February 29 were actually published shortly after midnight yesterday, Mon., March 8, 2004.

    Note (3/13/04): This morning, I attended the Sean Hannity event that I had discussed in this entry... I posted a short update about this at the bottom of this entry, and I will be posting a new entry with my reaction to this event as well.

    (I did not get "Hannitized" today... ;-)

    Note (3/15/04): Tom Gillespie, someone who I knew from high school, came with us to the event. I found out then that he also has a blog... Here's his entry about the Hannity event.

    Society of Conservative Students

    Please check out the home page of the newest student organization at UIS, the Society of Conservative Students (SCS):

    I am writing this entry on Saturday night, March 6, 2004, even though text was initially posted here (but not published) on Sunday, Feb. 29. On that day, the SCS Poker Tournament took place. The turnout was great, and we raised a good amount of funds for our organization. Photos from the tournament have been posted at our website.

    The following day, SCS co-sponsored a bake sale with the UIS Cooking Club. We didn't make very much from that, but our presence was hopefully noted by those who came. (The Cooking Club had food available for free, and many people came for that - it was an "Atkins-friendly" event... There were chicken and hamburgers there, with sandwich condiments, but no buns or bread. Our club sold some cookies and brownies.)

    On Saturday, March 13th - one week from now - members of SCS, along with a few others, will be taking a trip to Decatur, to see Sean Hannity speak. This might provide me with some blogging material... I had this thought some time after reading this excellent - and somewhat funny - entry by Radley Balko, about his presence at that conservative women's event where Ann Coulter spoke this past summer (I saw part of it on C-Span). No, Radley is certainly not a woman, but a friend of his had an extra ticket, and he decided to go, even though he's not a big fan of Ann. I'm not too big of a fan of Sean, but I think that I will go anyway. I'll get to hang out with the guys (and perhaps at least one female, as well), and it will be interesting to see a famous individual, and perhaps to get some photos, and an autograph as well. Plus, it will provide some "blog fodder" (likely, for a 'fisking' ;-).

    Update (3/9/04): It seems that Mr. Hannity may not be giving an actual speech there, but rather just doing photos, book signings, and autographs. Well, I may not be able to do the 'fisking' then, but at least that might save me some heartburn.

    Update (3/11/04): As I mentioned above, I saw part of that Ann Coulter speech on C-Span. I think I probably didn't like a lot of it, and Radley does a good job in that entry of 'fisking' Ann's points (though Radley's wrong on some things as well, like in concurring with the liberals and the neoconservatives with regard to Nixon's "Southern Strategy"). However, there was at least one thing that Ann said that I do kind of like... Radley includes this statement of Ann's in his entry:
    ... You know, when I tour college campuses, I always find that the prettiest girls in the room are the ones in the College Republicans.

    Joanne McNeil, who along with fellow female libertarian blogger Kate Duree was sitting with Radley at the event, didn't think much of that comment of Ann's, about our CR women... But being a CR officer, I feel otherwise :-)...

    Our friend Sean Hackbarth (who I like much better than the above-mentioned other Sean), commented at that entry of Joanne's:
    From my experience as a CR in the Midwest, I found the conservative women to be more attractive than the liberals. I also noticed it while watching national party conventions...

    I haven't thought much about this... What do you all think? (I hope Sean and Ann are right... :-)

    Update (3/13/04): That Hannity event was this morning, and as it turns out, he did give a speech there after all. As I indicated above, I will be doing the reaction blog entry to this event, but also - on Thursday, I came across this article from last week by Lee Harris at the great Tech Central Station site. Mr. Harris is a conservative columnist who, by the way, also had a book published very recently... :-)

    That article from last week by Mr. Harris is about Sean Hannity, and from that column, I found out that there have been some confrontational situations that've arisen out of the "Hannitization" book tour.

    - Latest news items on Mr. Hannity

    I also wanted to point out, regarding Ann Coulter, who is mentioned in this entry above, that my first blog entry on the issue of war and foreign policy was about her.

    It seems that while they're right on many issues, on some stuff, Sean and Ann just don't get it... especially Sean. He is too apologetic for President Bush, and is also way too supportive of the neoconservative/neoliberal foreign policy agenda. I will post my reaction to this morning's event in a new entry soon.


    A few weeks ago, there was a story circulating in the Blogsphere, and in the news and opinion pages and websites, about an alleged infidelity claim about Senator John Kerry. Many people pointed out that the Drudge Report featured this story on Feb. 12. However, one of the bloggers at the great site WatchBlog was actually the one who scooped this news, in this entry, six days before Drudge posted it.


    Update: I just saw this Feb. 12th entry by Josh Claybourn... He had updated that entry after posting it, saying:

    Just in case I wasn't clear, the Drudge Report broke this story. I noticed a disclaimer on Matt's site that reads "**Must Credit the DRUDGE REPORT**"

    But while Drudge may have "broken" certain aspects of the story (I don't know), it was WatchBlog that first reported this.

    I am happy to be a contributor at WatchBlog (in the Republican column).

    Here are my past WatchBlog entries:

    Jan. 27, 2004: Primary Challenges
    - This summarizes the conservative frustration with the policies of the Bush administration, over social, fiscal, and foreign policy-related issues. It also provides an overview of some of the other Republican presidential candidates.
    Jan. 20, 2004: State of the Union 2004
    - My hopes about what Mr. Bush would say
    Dec. 30, 2003: Christmas Wishes
    - Reflections and thoughts about Christmas, Christmases past, and war
    Dec. 19, 2003: Today in History
    - What happened five years ago, on December 19th?
    Nov. 26, 2003: Happy Thanksgiving!
    - My first entry at WatchBlog... It links to some good material for Thanksgiving

    [entry goes here...]

    I have a lot of entries that I have planned, and/or have jotted down some notes for, but have yet to post. This space is reserved for the future posting of one of those entries, or for something else that I decide to publish here. Please check back soon.

    Black History Month

    While it will be a little past February by the time these entries - the ones dated for Sunday, Feb. 29 - are published, I saved some posts as drafts on that Leap Day, the last day of Black History Month. The entries below contain some links to website about important African-American leaders, columnists, publications, and organizations.

    Also, check out the weblogs of La Shawn Barber, Michael Bowen, and Baldilocks, and even The Black Republican (note: the latter is not what one would think)

    Baldilocks is Juliette Ochieng, a military veteran, and a conservative Republican. I recently saw [via a link from this post of Citizen Smash] what happens when an African-American woman in South-Central L.A. asks for a Republican primary ballot.

    And speaking of the ballot in the 2004 California Republican primary, here are recommendations from the great conservative blogger Rory Miller. I'm here in Illinois, so I didn't vote in that primary, but I like how he recommended the great U.S. Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO) as a write-in candidate for President, rather than Bush. I've been thinking along the same lines.


    Alan Keyes [home page] [column archives]

    Armstrong Williams [home page] [column archives]

    Walter Williams [home page] [column archives]

    Thomas Sowell [home page] [column archives]

    Elizabeth Wright [columns]

    J. J. Johnson [columns]

    Larry Elder [home page] [column archives]

    Deroy Murdock [bio] [column archives]

    Wednesday, February 25, 2004

    The Passion


    On The Passion:

    Discussion thread by Jamie Doe (at 'Deux Ego'): Will you be seeing The Passion? Why or why not?

    Carmon Friedrich: Be Careful, Little Eyes

    Law Shawn Barber's entries: Feb. 18th, Feb. 19th, Feb. 26th.

    Nick Queen: We Crucified Jesus Christ

    Your thoughts on seeing The Passion: At Jen's blog, an open thread where people who've seen the movie can comment.

    Reactions from bloggers who've seen it:

    Craig Tanner, Feb. 21
    Julie Neidlinger, Feb. 25 (found via Bobby A-G)
    Rev. Donald Sensing, Feb. 26
    Christopher S. Johnson: Feb. 27

    Via Josh Claybourn's latest blog entry, I find the latest entry at blogs4God, which contains reviews of the movie by people in the Blogosphere.

    Here is Josh's reaction to the film, although his blog entry has to do more with the events pertinent to the subject of the movie than with the movie itself.

    Updates: More blogger reactions:

    Jared (of 'Thinkings'): Feb. 26: here and here
    Jared Bridges: Feb. 29
    locdog: March 7

    Also, here is famed film critic Roger Ebert's review of The Passion... And here is blogger Jared's review of that review.

    And from Dan Zanoza's excellent column on The Passion, I find Richard Roeper's review.


    - Official Movie Site:
    - Hollywood Jesus:
    - "The Premier International Fan Website" - Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ:
    - Information on The Passion:
    - See the Passion:

    Resources: Mel Gibson's The Passion
    World Net Daily: Coverage of Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ
    Jews for Jesus: Special section on The Passion

    I got one or two hits from this Blogdex page, which lists some weblogs, including mine, which have linked to the home page of this move. Those other sites include Jason Steffens' and Jen's weblogs, both of which I've commented at before. (An entry of Jen's is linked to in this entry - see above.) Also see this recent entry of Josh Claybourn's, and this post of Le Renard Subtil's.

    Note: I have now published the two additional Feb. 15 blog entries that I mentioned in the italicized note below. The 3rd entry currently at this blog is about the anniversary of a tragic event that occurred in 1945. The 5th entry has a few thoughts about Abraham Lincoln, but also notes that, right now, I have an overdue essay that I need to be working on. I'll try to have some more new material up here soon.

    Also: After finding and enjoying "Hey Ya!" (mentioned in that 5th post below), I found a neat parody of it ("Hey Allah!"), featuring, in place of OutKast, everyone's favorite tin-pot dictator (who by the way, also has a blog).

    Sunday, February 15, 2004

    Note: This entry, and the two below, despite their dates, are being published on the afternoon of Friday, Feb. 20, 2004. One thing that I sometimes do is save entries with not much text in them as drafts, and then add to them, and then publish them, while keeping the original date & time stamp from when they were initially saved. Below the previous two entries (the ones on Valentine's Day and the "American Minute"), I will later be publishing two additional ones - one about Lincoln, and one about an anniversary of something that occurred around this time in 1945. Also, several of my already-published entries still need to be updated.

    Today, February 15th, is my brother's birthday... He is now 20. Happy birthday to him!

    Catching Up

    Within the past few days, there have been several holidays and anniversaries. My posts below, which are late, are about the topics relating to those dates.

    I still have several entries below those that need to be updated and amended. I will try to do that soon... Thanks.

    For yesterday...

    Happy Valentine's Day!

    Baldilocks has a neat entry for this day. (We love you too, Juliette!)

    The Patriette has a great entry for Valentine's Day, about remembering our American heroes, many of whom are away from their loved ones at this time. I think I found out about her entry via Frank's entry, but I've been to Kelly's blog before, and my blog is thankfully blogrolled there (and hers is blogrolled here as well).

    Best wishes to Kelly and her husband, and to all those who have family members who are serving overseas right now. God bless you, and Gob bless our soldiers.

    An Unfortunate Anniversary

    In an entry below, I noted that I was a juror in a mock trial that we were having in my class on the Law of Military Conflict. While that trial is over, I did say that I might be doing, in future blog entries, a series of case studies on events that have happened in U.S. and world history, especially occurrences of wartime. There are many controversies that arise during the fog of war, and it can become very difficult to assess the responsibility for acts committed in those incidents, and to discern what exactly happened, and who did what to whom. I can think of some specific wartime controversies to do case examinations for, and will possibily do so some time in the future.

    But regarding the events of the past couple of days, the day before yesterday marks the anniversary of a very controversial and unfortunate event in 1945.
    (via this entry at the blog)

    If I had more time and energy, I might have done this for my first case study on this blog. But that is not the case right now. I will link to some background information and reference material on this case, though.

    Update (2/29/04): I went to Riverbend's blog after seeing it featured in this Feb. 16th post at the blog. (I have been to Riverbend's blog before, though, and it has been blogrolled at the lower section of my sidebar for some time. Riverbend is a 24-year-old Iraqi woman, blogging from Baghdad.) That entry at the blog is about this post of Riverbend's, in which she writes about the anniversary of the bombing of the Amirya shelter in Baghdad during the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

    Riverbend also discussed this incident in an entry from Sept. 3rd: Have you forgotten?
    (Entry found from this page at TomDispatch, while doing a web search)

    People marvel that we're not out in the streets, decking the monstrous, khaki tanks with roses and jasmine. They wonder why we don't crown the hard, ugly helmets of the troops with wreaths of laurel. They question why we mourn our dead instead of gratefully offering them as sacrifices to the Gods of Democracy and Liberty. They wonder why we're bitter...
    [Entry here]

    Despite being a liberal, Riverbend seems to be a good writer, and her insights into the war situation have been prolific and powerful. Someone tried to decrease her effectiveness by putting up an imposter blog; that shows that she must be effective, and is having an impact on people throughout the world.

    Note: Thinking about what I wrote above, I am not sure about the "being a liberal" part... Though River does have liberal sites on her blog's sidebar, perhaps the ideological standards for judging leftishness (if that's a word) are different with respect to the people of a place such as Iraq. Also, perhaps she is not aware of, or doesn't know much about, the many conservative and libertarian anti-war, anti-nation-building websites and organizations. (Though some of them know about her.)

    Here is another perspective on the Amiryah bombing, from the official White House website.

    Here is Iraqi blogger Salam Pax's response (scroll down some in that entry) to that White House web page. (Hat tip to Alan Cook and Rajan)

    Here is John Moore's response to Riverbend's above-mentioned Sept. 3rd entry, in which he rebuts her statements. A couple of months later, Mr. Moore did this entry on Iraqi bloggers (it was at that entry, by the way, that I posted my first comments at his site; we got into a discussion about foreign policy and the Iraq war). In that entry, Mr. Moore criticizes Riverbend, and the famous Iraqi blogger Salam Pax as well. Salam [latest news pieces on him] has long been regarded as a leading Iraqi blogger, and has been liked by supporters of the Iraq war (he supports the war, unlike Riverbend), but more recently, some war supporters have gotten upset due to Salam's views and attitude regarding the occupation. In that entry, Mr. Moore features other Iraqi bloggers, who are more-liked by supporters of our government's Iraq policy. The first 'good' blog that Mr. Moore lists is the widely-read 'Healing Iraq' blog, written by Zeyad, a 24-year-old Iraqi dentist. Zeyad has been well-liked by supporters of our government's Iraq policy; some anti-war folks may not have liked Zeyad's blog that much, though, and some criticized him for a somewhat-controversial post he did in November.

    However, more recently, Zeyad has been facing criticism from some supporters of our government's Iraq policy for his statements about a certain incident that he claims occurred to his family members in Iraq. There are many questionable stories that have been coming out from the ongoing Iraq situation, and some bloggers reacted with surprise and strong skepticism when reading Zeyad's blog posts on this alleged incident; many were surprised, because his blog is one that they had previously trusted, promoted, and supported. Zeyad contacted the prolific Chief Wiggles about the incident, who agreed to look into the matter.

    Here is an excellent entry on Riverbend's recent (February) post, mentioned above, by the excellent blogger Jason Van Steenwyk, a U.S. Army officer in Iraq. I added Jason's blog to my sidebar awhile ago as well; both his and Riverbend's blog are listed at the bottom part of the sidebar, in the section with blogs from Iraq. This is perhaps the first major war (with the possible exception of Afghanistan and Operation Enduring Freedom) in which weblogs from the war zone have become a helpful source of wartime reporting and first-hand insight. Blogging has the potential to change the face of journalism, commentary, and information gathering, and I am happy to be a part of this new phenomenon.

    For last Thursday

    Our state's premier conservative web publication, the Illinois Leader, featured, as their Quote of the Day, the American Minute with Bill Federer for Feb. 12th.

    American Minute with Bill Federer

    Thursday, February 12, 2004

    Can you believe it? Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin were born on the exact same day, February 12, 1809, but their lives had completely different effects.

    Lincoln is best known for freeing the slaves by issuing the Emancipation Proclamation, affirming that all men are equal.

    Darwin is best known for the theory of evolution, arguing that all men are not equal because some are more evolved.

    Darwin's theory has been used by atheists to explain away belief in God, whereas the last act of Congress signed by Lincoln, before he was shot, was to place the phrase "In God We Trust" on all our national coins.

    Note: Hyperlinks within the above "American Minute" were added by me, not by Mr. Federer.

    [Past "American Minutes" are available here.]

    Note: This entry was written around 1:30 AM CST on Wednesday, February 25th.

    Lincoln's Birthday

    There are a lot things that I could say about President Lincoln, as we observe his birthday during this time period. A lot of that will have to wait however... I right now have to do an essay for my history course on the cause of the U.S. Civil War, or perhaps I should say - the War between the States... Or perhaps, the War of Northern Agression. Anyway, some time after I started this blog, I was IMing with a southern blogger, and I think I mentioned that, though I liked the South, I am required - since I live here in Springfield, Illinois - to like Lincoln, at least somewhat.

    But that was then. I think I was already moving away from the standard, pro-Lincoln viewpoint, and into the viewpoint that is shared more by the conservatives in the southern United States, as well as by many paleo-conservatives and paleo-libertarians across the country. The class I took this summer, on The American Presidency, which I blogged about at that time, was also helpful in allowing me to learn more about the man who is so revered... Our professor fortunately did not like Lincoln, and he seemed different from many of the liberal faculty on campus.

    The essay that I have to write now is actually for another history class taught by this same professor. My position, in this essay, will be that the Civil War War of Southern Independence was caused by the desire for freedom and independence, based upon a good vision of states' rights and self-determination. I will argue that the issue of slavery was not a pivotal cause of the Civil War 2nd American Revolutionary War, and that the Confederacy had many legitimate grievances against the federal government. Tomorrow in class, I will be participating in a group debate about this topic. Unfortunately, this paper was due awhile ago, and I should have had it in already. Fortunately, it is not supposed to be too long, and I have some material on the topic. I may need to stay up for awhile, so I should probably replace this Orange Crush with some caffeinated beverage. With regard to the subject of having something to help you when you're feeling tired, I had, in a previous blog entry, thanked fellow student Josh Claybourn for introducing me to Mr. Nice - who is rather inspirational. However, last week, I ended up staying up all night, and in the morning (I am often not up in the morning, so I don't get this opportunity), I watched a very little bit of The Daily Buzz. They did a news item about how OutKast's performance of their hit song on the Grammy's was offensive to some American Indians (as if CBS hasn't been having enough problems with offending people already). Mitch English correctly commented on the unfortunate situation that we have now, in which so many things are now offensive to so many people...

    Anyway, when they showed a clip of OutKast's music video (I think that they showed a clip of the official music video of their hit song, not a clip from his Grammy performance of it, which was the one with the American Indian theme), I thought to myself about that song. I think that that was the same song that I had seen on one of those late night television shows (perhaps the Tonight Show), and I had kind of liked the sound of it. I thought I might like hearing that song, so I went and found it online (I found the music video of it at, where I am assuming it can be legally viewed). And it is excellent... I was playing it all day that day, and have played it many times since. So, while Mr. Nice is nice, for now at least, OutKast is tops. Hey Ya!

    I just got eliminated

    Right now, I am at a pool tournament here at UIS, sponsored by our new organization, The Society of Conservative Students (for which I am the Treasurer). I was, alas, the first one eliminated, but at least I got my money back. There are six prizes for those who are in this tournament (we have ten people in it).

    SCS is a great new organization, and this is possibily the first time that there is a conservative student organization (other than College Republicans) at this university. Both CRs and SCS have many ideas and plans for the future, and it will be exciting to be a part of these events here in the capital city.

    I'll likely post some stuff about our activities in future blog entries.

    Update: Congratulations to Philip Reinhardt for winning first place in the tournament. The UIS Journal will likely be printing the results in the next issue.

    Saturday, February 07, 2004

    Last year, I was two days late. This year, I thought I would cut that in half. So here it is, one day afterwards:

    Happy 93rd, Mr. President!
    Happy Birthday Ronnie!!

    Check out

    So that's why it was "Ronald Reagan Day" yesterday!

    (I found out it was President Reagan's birthday yesterday [latest news & views] from Joe Farah's great column for that day, in which he mentioned this. I had previously seen something about it being Ronald Reagan Day on February 6th, but I didn't make the connection between that, and it being his birthday that day also, until I went to the Reagan Ranch site.)

    As I said last year: A hearty congratulations and best wishes for the greatest president of our time.

    The Feb. 7th World magazine cover image was here, but due to the large size of this web page, I needed to remove it.
    [Link to Image - magazine cover]
    That image linked to the Feb. 7th issue of World, which features Ronald Reagan.

    Send President Reagan birthday wishes...

    A Gift for the Gipper, Lawrence Kudlow
    Illinois: The roots of Ronald Reagan and modern day conservatism, Fran Eaton
    Reagan Museum to reopen: Eureka College rallies after arson to give the ex-president a gift for his 93rd birthday, Chicago Tribune
    Reagan Museum Opens, Bloomington Pantagraph
    Illinois towns abuzz on Reagan's 93rd birthday, Chicago Sun-Times

    Happy Ronald Reagan Day: 25 Governors Issue Proclamation Honoring America's 40th President on His 93rd Birthday

    The Reagan Generation

    I have been communicating with Miss Jennifer Brower over the past couple of years... She is a conservative Illinoisian, and a Reagan Republican. Jennifer has been active in the Illinois Republican Liberty Caucus. She is also an expert web designer, and maintains several websites, including the great

    As Jennifer has pointed out, we are the REAGAN GENERATION...

    I'll add links to some good Reagan sites to this entry soon. Some of the entries that I've saved as drafts are on Reagan-related subjects, and they will be published below this one.

    Updates: ~ The Reagan Information Page ~ Reagan Library and Museum ~ Reagan Foundation ~ Ronald Reagan Legacy Project ~ ~ Christian's Reagan Tribute

    Ronald "Dutch" Reagan and Eureka College

    More Reagan websites...

    Note: This is one of the above-mentioned entries that was saved as a draft. Despite its date, it was published on Saturday, Feb. 14th (Happy Valentine's Day! :-)

    Reagan administration officials and the Iraq war

    When I debated two pro-war bloggers, who questioned my assertion that much of the opposition to the recent Iraq war came from the Right, not just the Left, and I provided a great deal of reference material regarding this, they both responded by pointing out that some of my material was about members of the Bush 41 administration who opposed this war, and George Herbert Walker Bush's administration was regarded as not being conservative. In reality, the material that I provided linked to many groups and individuals from the Right who opposed the war, not just those from the Bush 41 administration.

    Check out the pertinent comment threads, at John Moore's blog (scroll down to my 3rd and 4th comments posted there) and at Pietro's blog.

    I recently started a list of Reagan administration officials who opposed the recent Iraq war, and since I am doing a series of Reagan-related posts, I thought that I could publish here what I have so far. Keep in mind that there might be more than just these people; however, this is what I could list quickly when making that list, based upon my previous research. (Update: Since my original list was made, I added two more individuals to it - Edward Peck and Thomas Gale Moore. I may update this entry if I find more names that would pertain to this listing.)

    [Note: Also, I already have a partial compilation of conservative organizations and conservative columnists who opposed this war. That is available at this past blog entry (scroll down some in it for the relevant info). That is a not a complete enumeration, but listed there are over 75 regularly-published conservative columnists, and more than 20 national conservative organizations, policy institutes, and think tanks, that took a stance against the Iraq war.]

    But aside from that, since the claim was made that much of the opposition came from the Bush 41 administration members (which it did), I am going to list here some of the members of President Reagan's administration who also opposed this war.

    Reagan administration members who opposed the Iraq war

    Colonel James Webb and Morley Safer
    Colonel James Webb []

    Renowned naval hero, military expert, and writer; Served as U.S. Secretary of the Navy and as an Assistant Secretary of Defense

    - War in Iraq Turns Ugly... That's what wars do, March 30, 2003
    - Heading for Trouble... Do we really want to occupy Iraq for the next 30 years?, Sept. 4, 2002 ~ A prescient piece

    - *NEW* ~ Veterans face conundrum: Kerry or Bush?, Feb. 18, 2004 (Hat tip to Micah Holmquist)

    News articles on Colonel Webb:
    - Webb: Don't Attack Iraq - War Hero Urges Restraint, Nov. 8, 2002
    - At Navy School in Monterey, voices of skepticism about Iraq war, Nov. 10, 2002
    - Former Navy Secretary Blasts Bush on Iraq, Aug. 30, 2003 (Hat tip to Ara Rubyan)

    Dr. Lawrence Korb
    Lawrence Korb

    Foreign policy analyst and commentator; Expert on national security and U.S. defense budget; Served as an Assistant Secretary of Defense; Former professor at the U.S. Naval War College and U.S. Coast Guard Academy

    - Six Steps to a Safer America, Jan. 29, 2004
    - A War of Choice or of Necessity?, Dec. 7, 2003

    - Council on Foreign Relations: Lawrence J. Korb
    - Roundtable on Homeland Security (Project directed by Dr. Korb)

    NEW! ~ After a Crisis, Bush is no Reagan, Dr. Lawrence Korb, Feb. 11, 2004 (via

    News articles on Dr. Korb:
    - Stemming Flow of Nuclear Weapons Technology No Easy Task, say Analysts, VOA News, Feb. 12, 2004
    - Rumsfeld to bolster overtasked military, Chicago Tribune, Feb. 5, 2004
    - New research group urges revamped defense spending, Reuters, Jan. 29, 2004

    Ambassador Edward Peck
    Ambassador Edward Peck

    Leading expert on Iraq and foreign policy issues; Former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, under President Carter; Former Foreign Service Officer in Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Egypt; Served as Deputy Director of President Reagan's Terrorism Task Force, and as Deputy Director of Covert Intelligence Programs, as well as Director of the Office of Egyptian Affairs, and as Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Political Affairs (served in both Democratic & Republican administrations).

    - NPR Interview: Edward Peck Discusses The Possible U.S. Involvement In Iraq; Should The U.S. Launch A Pre-Emptive Strike?, Oct. 21, 2002
    - CNN's Crossfire ~ Ambassador Edward Peck vs. Lt. Col. Robert McGinnis, Oct. 8, 2001:
    Excellent show! See transcript here or here.

    News articles on Ambassador Peck:
    - Iraq: Pandora's Box Wide Open?, KSFY, Feb. 2, 2004
    - Military maneuvers into Mideast will cost U.S., former ambassador says, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, April 15, 2003
    - A 'terrible, bloody' miscalculation, OC Register, Apr. 2, 2003
    - Iraq -- Standard Operating Procedure?, L. Reichard White, Oct. 7, 2002
    - Iraqi Phase Debate Continues, UPI, Dec. 10, 2001

    White House Photo: President Reagan and Mr. Buchanan
    Patrick J. Buchanan

    Conservative commentator and movement leader, popular columnist and author; Former presidential candidate; Served as White House Communications Director and senior advisor to the President (Served in the Nixon and Ford administrations as well)

    The American Conservative - the best conservative magazine... Do you subscribe?

    News articles on Mr. Buchanan:
    - Conservatives' Uncivil War Over Iraq, Washington Post, Mar. 23, 2003
    - Conservatives Against the War, R. Cort Kirkwood, Agape Press, Feb. 19, 2003
    - Antiwar Conservatives Bash Hawks on Iraq, Pacific News Service, Feb. 12, 2003
    - Conservative Fissures, Kelley Beaucar Vlahos, Fox News, Sept. 28, 2002
    - Buchanan's new magazine aims to rescue 'highjacked' right, Jennifer Harper, Washington Times, Sept. 25, 2002

    Angela 'Bay' Buchanan
    Angela "Bay" Buchanan

    Conservative leader, popular orator and campus speaker, and television commentator; President of The American Cause; Served as national treasurer for Ronald Reagan's presidential campaigns, including the Reagan-Bush campaign committee, and as the Treasurer of the United States (her signature was on our currency), and then as the Chair of the Commission on Women Business Owners

    Ms. Buchanan's signature

    Jude Wanniski []

    Leading American political economist, renowned conservative leader, and supply side guru; Served as unofficial advisor to the President, and was close ally of Jack Kemp as well. Invited to Camp David in April of 1989 to advise President George Herbert Walker Bush
    [Mr. Wanniski is the founder of Polyconomics.]

    Read Jude Wanniski's Memo on the Margin

    News articles on Mr. Wanniski:
    - Encyclopedia entry: Jude Wanniski
    - Neocons vs. Supply Siders: The coming war over Iraq, Timothy Noah, Slate, Sept. 9, 2003
    - Supply side hero, arguing against war with Iraq, asserts Saddam didn't commit Halabja gassing, Barron's, Sept. 3, 2002
    - Myths Happen, Jack Kemp, May 1, 2000
    - How Reaganomics Made the World Work - We are all supply siders now, Bob Bartley, April 21, 1989
    (Note: I should have included this last article in my entry below, about the recent passing of Mr. Bartley.)

    Update (2/26/04): There are some who are claiming, due to the current WMD controversy, that everybody believed that Iraq had the banned weapons. But this is not true. Aside from Colonel Ritter, Mr. Wanniski also got it right about this issue.

    Prior to the war, the renowned conservative leader and political economist asserted, in his reports and columns, that there were no weapons of mass destruction (WMD), nor any chemical and biological weapons (CBW), in Iraq. (And by the way - Yes, there is a difference between 'WMD' and 'CBW.') Slate columnist Tim Noah mocked Wanniski for saying this, but now writes that Jude's position "...seemed crazy at the time but looks prescient today."

    Mr. Wanniski has contacts in Iraq, and has researched much of this information thoroughly. He has been refuting many of the claims about Iraq and the Iraqi leadership for some time now. Mr. Wanniski was an advisor to Ronald Reagan and George Herbert Walker Bush. If the younger Bush had been communicating with Jude (like his father did), he may not be in the uncertain political situation that he is in right now.

    Dr. Paul Craig Roberts
    Paul Craig Roberts

    Leading American economist and commentator, and nationally-syndicated columnist; Served as an Assistant Secretary of the Treasury.

    - Watching Propaganda Become Truth, Feb. 10, 2004
    - Is Bush Doomed?, Jan. 17, 2004
    - Hold the Neocons Accountable, Nov. 17, 2003
    - Wisdom of the Father; Folly of the Son, Oct. 11, 2003
    - Iraq: The Last Republican Hurrah, Jan. 26, 2003
    - A Leap into the Dark, Nov. 15, 2002
    - Iraq is not the Problem, Sept. 11, 2002

    Doug Bandow

    Conservative columnist and Cato Insitute senior fellow; Served as Special Assistant to the President

    - A Half Century of Military Committment and Counting, Aug. 4, 2003
    - Recasting the Constitution, Jan. 13, 2003
    - National Review Debate: Doug Bandow vs. Jed Babbin on Iraq - Round I, Round II
    - Bring the Troops Home From Korea, CATO Institute Policy Analysis, May 7, 2003
    - Doug Bandow on Pakistan on National Review Online, Jan. 8, 2003
    - Don't Start the Second Gulf War, August 20, 2002
    - Axis of Hubris, March 6, 2002

    William A. Niskanen

    CATO Institute chairman, political theorist, and expert on defense, finance, and trade issues; Served as member of the Council of Economic Advisors, and then as acting chairman of the Council; Served as personal advisor to Ronald Reagan before he became President as well.

    - U.S. Should Refrain from Attacking Iraq, Dec. 13, 2001
    - One Last Time: The Case Against a War with Iraq, Feb. 25, 2003

    News articles on Mr. Niskanen:
    - Iraq Next U.S. Target? Lawmakers, policy analysts, debate Saddam's role in terror war, Jon Dougherty, World Net Daily, Dec. 15, 2001
    - Experts Consider U.S. Attack on Iraq, Judith Latham, VOA News, March 3, 2002
    - Not all Conservatives on Board with Iraq War, Ralph Z. Hallow, Washington Times, Feb. 12, 2003

    Thomas Gale Moore [ ]

    Hoover Institution senior fellow; Competitive Enterprise Institute Board of Directors member; Served as member of the Council of Economic Advisors, and as a member, and then as acting chairman, of the President's National Critical Materials Council and, as a member of the President's National Commission on Superconductivity.

    - How to Reduce Terrorism, June 11, 2002
    - A Humbler Foreign Policy, Feb. 18, 2003
    - Learning from History, June 25, 2003

    William Bradford Reynolds
    William Bradford Reynolds

    Conservative law expert; Served as Counselor to the Attorney General, Assistant Solicitor General, Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights; Nominated to be Associate Attorney General (nomination defeated)

    Clyde Prestowitz

    Economist and foreign policy expert; Prolific book writer; Served as counselor to the Secretary of Commerce

    Update (5/15/04): Here are two more Reagan administration officials who I recently found out about, who opposed this war:

    Lt. General William Odom

    Director of National Security Studies at Hudson Institute; Military analyst and foreign policy expert; Former Director of National Security Agency.

    Interview - Odom: Bush Should Admit Iraq Is a 'Mess' And Make Plans for a U.S. Troop Pullout by Next Year
    PBS NewsHour - Winning and Losing: Experts Analyze Coalition Progress in Iraq War, May 10, 2004
    Stand Down blog - NSA chief under Reagan speaks, Matthew Hogan, May 13, 2004

    News articles on Lt. Gen. Odom:
    - Latest news on Lt. Gen. Odom
    - Former NSA Director: War Weariness Growing, Alan Bock, May 14, 2004
    - Where the U.S. goes after Abu Ghraib, Christian Science Monitor, May 12, 2004

    Stefan Halper

    Senior Fellow at Cambridge University's Centre of International Studies; Served in Nixon, Ford, and Reagan administrations; Former U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State; National Policy Director of George H. W. Bush's 1980 presidential campaign; Director of Policy Coordination for Reagan-Bush 1980; Senior foreign policy advisor to Republican National Committee.

    Note: I think that Dr. Halper may be a supporter of the Iraq war, but recently, he has been very critical of the way that the Bush administration has managed it, and I do not know if he still believes that it was the right thing to do.

    Great article! - What Would Reagan Do?: Reagan's foreign policy not consistant with neoconservatism, May 9, 2004, Stefan Halper & Jonathan Clarke
    - Twilight of the Neocons, March 2004

    News articles on Dr. Halper:
    - Interview: Republican insider admits Administration's diplomacy failure
    - Conservatives rebelling against the war (see pg. 2), The Nation, May 13, 2004
    - Update: Conservative roasts Bush on war, Associated Press, July 12, 2004

    Update (9/15/07): Not long after I published that entry, I became aware of even more members of the Ronald Reagan administration who opposed the war against Iraq. I am not going to go through and list all of them [there are just too many], but here are few other notable ones:

    Adm. William J. Crowe, U.S. Navy, Ret.
    Appointed by President Reagan to be Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1985 [thereby becoming the first person in history to serve in that capacity as the senior ranking member of the U.S. Armed Forces], and served in same position in the George Herbert Walker Bush administration, until his retirement from the U.S. Navy in 1989. Also appointed by President Reagan to serve on the Board of Governors for the American Red Cross.

    Amb. Arthur Hartman, U.S. Air Force, Ret.

    Appointed by President Reagan to be U.S. Ambassador to the U.S.S.R. in 1981, and served in that position again, in the second term, until he retired from public service in 1987 (after nearly 40 years of diplomatic service to the United States government).

    Amb. Jack F. Matlock, Jr.

    After Ambassador Art Hartman's retirement (as noted above), President Reagan appointed Jack Matlock, Jr. to serve as U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union. Ambassador Matlock had been serving in the Reagan administration since its beginning, first as U.S. Ambassador to Czeckoslovakia and a member of the National Security Council, and was then appointed Special Assistance to the President for National Security Affairs.

    Amb. William C. Harrop

    After having served as U.S. Ambassador to Kenya, William Caldwell Harrop was appointed by President Reagan in 1983 to serve as Inspector General of the Department of State and the Foreign Service, a position in which he served until 1986, when he rose to the position of Program Inspector General of that Department. Also appointed in 1987 to be U.S. Ambassador to Zaire.

    President Reagan's successor, President George Herbert Walker Bush, appointed William Harrop to serve as U.S. Ambassador to Israel.

    Amb. H. Allen Holmes, USMC, Capt., Ret.

    Retired U.S. Marine Corps Captain and career diplomat Henry Allen Holmes served as U.S. Ambassador to Portugal from 1982 to 1985, when he was appointed by President Reagan to be Assistant Secretary of State for Politico-Military Affairs. Also appointed to serve as the first Director of President Reagan's United States Nuclear Risk Reduction Center.

    "Not So Fast?"

    Ben Domenech, who used to work in one of the departments in the Bush administration, says that "the paleocons and antiwar folks" in the Blogosphere are now claiming that "every silly caricature" that they drew of the Bush administration before and during the Iraq war was accurate, due to the revelations surrounding David Kay's testimony regarding the weapons of mass destruction issue. By the way, I have pointed out before that much of the opposition to this war has come from the Right (and not just "the paleocons") and from the military community, and current and retired U.S. military leaders. In the Blogosphere, several of the bloggers who are expressing frustration and dismay over the troubling reality regarding the WMD issue have been non-liberals and non-paleocons, including some who supported the Iraq war. But aside from that issue, this entry of Ben's is claiming that the war was still justified, even though it should have had a lower priority than it did.

    At least Ben is now focusing completely on the national security aspect of justifying this war, unlike before.

    Check out the discussion in the comments section at that entry. The first commenter writes that "the media and the Bush-haters" have been "acting like WMDs were the only reason for the war." But some research on the web would show that even supporters of the Iraq war have acknowledged that the Bush administration made clear that this was a conditional war, a war that would not be necessary if the Iraqi regime complied with U.S. and U.N. demands that it disarm. The leading conservative collegiate blogger Josh Claybourn, a supporter of the Iraq war, has done many entries on this matter. Here is a comment post of mine, which I wrote in response to an entry at another blog, which provides resources that show that President Bush, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, and Secretary of State Powell all made clear, in the months prior to the commencement of the war, that the war could be averted if Iraq were to comply with our disarmament demands.

    After some of his commenters at that entry thread criticize his position, Ben posts comments in response. (I just noticed that his first comment at his entry does, unfortunately, revert to a certain type of argument that I've gotten so immensely angry and frustrated about seeing made recently [even by people claiming to be conservatives] to retrospectively justify the war. Fortunately, as you can see here, many war supporters have acknowledged that that type of left-wing, statist, Jesse Jackson-type logic is illegitimate, and a poll taken three months after the major combat was declared over revealed that only about 10% of Americans subscribe to it.)

    A commenter at that entry of Ben's points out that the Iraq war did not correspond to our nation's self-defense, and that the threat from Iraq was not imminent. That commenter also correctly points out that Ben has created a false dichotomy between liberal interventionism and complete isolationism... This, by the way, is the typical tactic used by statists and neoliberals to justify state action, government expansion, and liberal spending - Bill Clinton did this same thing (the Clintonistas and the neoconservatives both did this during his administration), and Al Gore tried to do it against George W. Bush in the 2000 elections. Ironically, Ben seems to be advocating preemptive warfare in cases in which threats are not clearly imminent, and then, in another comment in that thread, links to an item about how John Kerry plans to "return" to Clinton's terrorism policies.

    That piece is about a specific aspect of the Clinton's terrorism policy (his emphasis on treating terrorist acts as law enforcement problems rather than acts of war). But that article that Ben links to, with the purpose of comparing that Clintonian position to the position of his critical commenter, is not directly relevant to this debate. It is ironic however, that Ben seems to be advocating warfare in cases in which threats are not immediate, and then brings up the issue of "returning" to Clinton's policies.

    I did a lengthy blog entry, some posts below (permalink here) about liberals and the doctrine of pre-emptive war. If you follow some of the links within that entry, you can see that even some supporters of the Iraq war (both conservative and liberal) have pointed out that support for pre-emptive war is a liberal, Democratic policy.

    If you haven't already done so, please look through that entry at:

    Especially check out the links provided within it, with respect to the issue of pre-emptive war.

    I will be updating that entry with some additional background material about this topic.

    Wednesday, February 04, 2004

    Jury Duty

    I will be in court today.

    It won't be an actual, legally-binding trial, though - This afternoon, I will be participating in a mock trial, for my class on "The Law of Military Conflict."

    The case that will be tried today is the Malmedy case, which deals with crimes that occurred during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II.


    Studying the events of the past - such as those pertaining to military conflict and warfare, and the controversies that arise from these occurrences - this is a major academic matter. There are methods of examination of these cases, and different aspects of the case that must be studied and delineated.

    When attempting to ascertain the truth about any incident, there are going to be some difficulties. Oftentimes, there are conflicting accounts about what happened, and eyewitness testimony can be tricky to deal with, as anyone familiar with criminal law should know. When dealing with a wartime situation, things can also be very difficult to determine, and to prove. In the fog of war, there are going to be conflicting accounts about what happened, and who did what, and how many people were affected by this, or by that... and things like that. I am not saying that the Malmedy case was like this (I do not know much about this case), but from what we learned in class, there are some uncertainties about the specific aspects of this case.

    I have the role as serving on the panel hearing the case. After both sides present their case today, we will have until Monday to reach a verdict. I am glad that the case chosen for our mock trial in this class is one that I did not already have previous knowledge and information about. I did not know anything about the Malmedy affair before this class... Yesterday, though, I did a little research on the internet. (We are allowed to do that as jurors... While it could create a bias, our professor also said that it could be realistic, since in a trial such as this, the jurors probably knew something about the case before the trial.)

    Case Studies

    One thing that I have been thinking of doing on this blog, is to compose entries with case studies of different controversial events that have occurred in world history - especially events that happened during wartime, and for which there are multiple theories about what actually occurred. Controversies like this arise out of occurrence in most major wars, and some of them are very controversial, because they are later used to justify additional military actions, as preventative or retaliatory actions due to what is believed to have occurred. This is a phenomenon that has been occurring, probably since the beginning of warfare in world history... And studying these matters, and examining the different theories and points of view, is essential to being able to determine the truth about what occurred. In many of these cases, there are several possible theories, and experts are going to disagree as to the facts of the case. Nevertheless, performing case examinations of these occurrences is a good learning experience, and it can be insightful, and can help us better understand the complex issues of history, geography, anthropology, and political science. By learning as much as possible about particular subjects, we are able to form well-substantiated positions and viewpoints about these matters, and about the issues and parties involved. A well-informed public is essential to a successful society and polity, and can help us to better understand what is going on in the present time period in which we live.

    Tuesday, February 03, 2004

    Super Tuesday

    Check out Command Post for the latest...


    Note: I had to remove the image that was previously here, due to the fact that my blog's front page is so large in size. The image source, and the page to which it was linked, are below.

    image for this entry

    link to candidate site
    (Endorsement not necessarily implied)