Good morning ! Today MI-5 in Great Britain arrested at least twenty persons who were apparently planning to detonate liquid explosives concealed in hand-luggage aboard trans-Atlantic passenger aircraft. Homeland Security Secretary Chertoff says it looks like Al Qaeda. Ya think ?
In Israel, 140 rockets have been fired at Israel today, so far. The rockets are not aimed, just loosed-off in the general direction of Israel, one of them killing a mother and her five-year old child. Meanwhile, the Israelis, apparently under American pressure (why, for Christ's sake ?), have postponed the further development of their ground offensive.
In Iraq, the Iraqi Army has made another division (the 4th), completely operational. Its area of operations includes Saddam's old stronghold, Tikrit. This is the fifth of a projected ten divisions to become operational. The US Army says that 25 brigades and 85 battalions of Iraqi troops have assumed "operational command and control" -- presumably of particular assigned sectors, to date. US troops, meanwhile are hunting death-squads in Baghdad. Despite all this activity, a suicide-bomber killed 35 people and injured 100 others, besides ending his own miserable life, near the Imam Ali Mosque in Najif. The Prime Minister of Iraq is blaming Sunni extremists.
Meanwhile, the Islamic Republic News Agency (Joseph Goebbels called his similar organization the Ministry of Propaganda) reports that Mr. Ali Larijani, who styles himself the "Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council" of Iran says that Iran will reject both the UN resolution calling on Iran to halt uranium enrichment, not to mention any actual suspension of uranium enrichment. Iran will "not accept talks under duress" says Mr. Larijani. No duress for Iran, oh God forbid, but Israel must be destroyed, Mad Jad has said.
Meanwhile, in other happy talk out of Tehran, the Iranian Prosecutor-General, Mr. Qorbanali Dorri Najafabadi, warns his countrymen that "The vicious triangle of the US, Britain and Israel in continuing hostility to Islam now targets the culture of Jihad and martyrdom. . ." This person says that President Bush and Secretary of State Rice ". . .symbolize neo-Crusaders in hostility toward the world of Islam and Muslims." Mr. Najafabadi can say this becuase he is either (1) delusional and really thinks it, or (2) because he knows that Bush and Rice really aren't neo-Crusaders, because if they were, Tehran would be glowing in the dark. Which is it ? Mr. Najafabadi is the former Minister of Intelligence, so I don't think he's at all delusional, although he is certainly somewhat unsavory. I rather suspect he thinks we are weak sisters. I'm coming round to the view that the Iranians are at back of everything that's going on right now. Hezbollah is not some rag-tag bunch of guerrillas, but appears to have deployed some well-trained formations to oppose the Israelis, that have good equipment. A nation-state is clearly behind them: they appear to me to be more of an Iranian Foreign Legion than anything that's Lebanese. Similarly, our foes in Iran are too well equipped and financed, as are our enemies in Afghanistan. Should we just go to the source and make Tehran glow, before it can do the same to us ?