Archive for November, 2007



Whichever Comes First

Milblogger Greyhawk at The Mudville Gazette makes this observation about the current opportunity to stabilize Iraq and the history of the insurgency with a soldier’s irony. We may have had a similar opportunity in 2003. Some have made that claim, though I’m not certain it’s accurate. I’m more certain that at the time there were [...]

Tactical Perception Management

Today dramatic footage is often the primary goal, not the byproduct, of combat. The reality created by the media is what determines the outcome in the information war – not the reality on the ground. As Richard Landes of the Augean Stables asserts media really is a theater of war and has been since the [...]

End of an Era

When I arrived in Australia nearly 32 year ago John Howard was a minister in the then Fraser government. Fraser had just taken over in a constitutional crisis that is still controversial from the then Whitlam labor government. A year later he had been promoted to the number two spot and was commonly referred to [...]

An MP3 Player For Books

My sister sent me a link to the Amazon Kindle that sparked my interest. It’s a lightweight $400 ebook reader – a specialized tablet PC with a wireless connection so you can download e-texts from Amazon. It sold out in five and a half hours according to Slashdot. Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos with [...]

Welcome Back Thommo

(Down Wombats – I’m not talking about our beloved pace bowler ) When the NY Times Op Ed columnists disappeared behind the Times Select firewall I missed Thomas Friedman the most. He is the newspaper’s ‘mister inbetween’ – viewed by the right as a screaming liberal and in a British publication called Why Do People [...]

A Return to Pessimism

In a moment of optimism I had hoped that after Musharraf had paved the way for Benazir Bhutto’s return from exile and her narrow escape from a Taliban bomb, Pakistan’s ruling elite were showing signs of uniting against the threat of Islamic radicalism. I was wrong. Whatever plans Musharraf had for a transition back to [...]

A New Form of Civil Society

In response to discussion of this post on the subject of nuclear targeting Richard Fernandez of The Belmont Club is explaining why he is “cautiously optimistic that the War on Terror can be won without recourse to large-scale bloodshed.” On September 12 we were probably not very much weaker in a purely kinetic sense than [...]

Pre-constructing Reality

In a straight faced satire of contemporary reporting, Rob at The Better Part of Valour, pre-constructs a news item spinning away the likely damage to the credibility of the traditional media if the court ordered release of the 27 minutes of rushes of the 2000 al Durrah incident occurs in Paris later today. Here is [...]

Language is a Giveaway

A Breitbart news item entitled Hollywood is casualty of war as movie-goers shun Iraq films has garnered over 500 indignant comments. Their overwhelming message is that the clueless article avoids the obvious – that the public wont go to them because the movies are anti military and anti American. The thread reads like an echo [...]

Softly, Softly Silver Bullet

Richard Fernandez has a post at Pajamas Media about the apparent failure of the British ‘softly softly’ approach in Southern Iraq. It wasn’t long ago the wise and the good where holding up the British example as the right way and the American way as plainly and obviously wrong. I’m not criticizing Fernandez here. What [...]