Iraq Round-Up!

I'm all about efficiency, so I'll just say that if you haven't signed up for my weekly War on Iraq newsletter, you really should.

To the round-up…

The Los Angeles Times takes the Understated Headline of the Week award with this gem:

Maliki, Bush may differ on Iran's role

Gosh, ya think?


While the Iraqi PM was hobnobbing with his Iranian counterpart, McClatchy reports that Dick Cheney has been pushing for airstrikes against Iranian targets in Iraq. Reporters Warren Strobel, John Walcott and Nancy Youssef add:
The debate has been accompanied by a growing drumbeat of allegations about Iranian meddling in Iraq from U.S. military officers, administration officials and administration allies outside government and in the news media.
The most prominent of these voices in the military is Brigadier General Kevin Bergner, now the chief spokesflack for the coalition forces in Iraq. It's a job he got fresh out of the White House, where he served as a special assistant to Bush. His word is like gold.

Judith Miller's old writing partner, Michael Gordon, had a nice bit of stenography on the story, repeating the claim that the "Explosive Formed Penetrators" -- AKA "bombs" -- that have taken the majority of American lives are so super hard to manufacture that they must be coming from Iran. As blogger Duncan Black put it:
Those of us who stayed awake the past couple of years remember the claims that those caveman Iraqis, once so sophisticated that they were going to DESTROY US ALL WITH THEIR DEATH RAYS OF MASS DESTRUCTION, were now such losers that they couldn't possibly build the incredibly advanced EFPs.
Of course, a local, home-grown EFP factory was discovered in Iraq a few weeks after the US started making the claim.

I wonder how anyone could believe that Iraqi insurgents really require much in the way of outside assistance. The country is flooded with guns and explosives and unemployed vets with military training. And, again, a third of the weapons we've sent to Iraq are missing.

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