Monday, May 12, 2008

Other Items

Turkish jets bombed on Sunday the Nerwa and Rekan areas in northern Iraq, the website of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) reported.
Turkish jets also bombed mountainous areas in the Zakho district of Duhok province earlier on Sunday, PUK media reported, adding Turkish artillery sporadically shelled the same areas.
Yawar said on Monday the Sunday night strikes occurred in a remote part of Dahuk province near the border with Turkey.

The above is from Hurriyet's "Iraqi Kurds say Turkey resumes bombing PKK targets in N. Iraq." In a story on the price of oil per barrel -- which hit $126.27 on Friday and 'fell' to $125.42 a barrel today -- Reuters notes:

Analysts said recent outages have highlighted the vulnerability of oil supplies from several regions and ongoing violence in the Middle East would continue to fan supply fears.
Turkey said on Sunday it had launched air and artillery attacks against Kurdish separatist rebels in northern Iraq overnight after an insurgent strike on a military base.
Over the past week dozens of Turkish F-16 warplanes have launched bombing raids against suspected PKK positions deep inside northern Iraq.

USA Today explores the issue of women in combat in their editorial "Policy on women in combat bears no relation to reality:"

Smart commanders use women "in all the positions for which they are qualified," as the 1994 policy also envisions. But when it comes to the exclusions, the Army has to tie itself in knots to show that it's complying.
Thus, in talking about Spc. Monica Brown, a medic who won the Silver Star in March after running through gunfire to save injured comrades, the Army is at pains to underscore that Brown wasn't "assigned" to the combat unit where she showed such courage, but was only "attached" to it. That's just silly.
Most of the opponents of women in combat seem to have gotten over their objections. In a USA TODAY/Gallup poll in September, 74% of Americans agreed that women should be allowed to hold combat jobs, up from 36% in an NBC News poll that asked the same question in 1981.
In 2005, when a band of House Republicans tried to limit women's roles in the war, the top brass objected so strenuously the critics were forced to retreat. (When we sought a lawmaker to debate this issue today, several one-time critics of women in combat declined to write an opposing view.)
Even if you accept one of the objections raised by past opponents -- that female POWs could face rape and other abuse -- keeping women from the so-called front lines won't help. Female soldiers are subject to capture at a checkpoint or in a convoy almost anywhere in Iraq.

Isaiah's The World Today Just Nuts "Electable?" went up yesterday.

Alexandra Zavis (Los Angeles Times' Babylon & Beyond) notes: "Government officials had been talking about it for months. But when the offensive finally began Saturday to clear the northern city of Mosul of insurgents, residents were caught off guard." Talking about it? Did someone miss that Barack Obama, April 8th, was praising it in the Senate during The Petraeus & Crocker Variety Hour? Praising it, acting like it had taken place. He doesn't know how many states make up the United States, he thinks his Kenyan father (buried in Kenya) had a US flag draped on his coffin . . . Yeah, he's ready for leadership.

Lynda notes Neera Tanden's "My Daughter Can Dream a Bit Bigger Because of the Path Hillary has Blazed" (

Neera Tanden is the Policy Director on the Hillary Clinton for President campaign.
Campaigns, especially Presidential campaigns, are relentless -- long hours and late night phone calls are par for the course. So parents of young children are often hesitant to join them. As a mother of two fabulous children -- a 5 year old girl and a 2 year old boy -- I had my own concerns when I first started my job on this campaign. I knew that a presidential campaign would, to put it mildly, mean less family time. But I took this job -- and have worked for Hillary for 10 years -- because I believe there is no public official in America more committed to our children's future. Hillary has worked tirelessly for decades to make mothers' (and fathers') jobs easier. During the course of this campaign, I've been lucky to work with her on her policies to help parents balance work and family -- from a national paid leave program, to expanding the Family and Medical Leave Act, to expanding child care. And I have to say, those proposals really hit home for me.
So on Mothers' Day, I'm proud of what Hillary has already done in terms of changing the conversation about women's roles and mothers' roles. I'm honored to be part of this fight, and feel lucky that I was able to do the job. As a mom herself, Hillary has been tremendously understanding and flexible, moving meetings to accommodate my daughter's school plays. While I may sleep a little less than I'd like, I actually have been able to tuck my kids into bed at night most nights on this campaign.
That is a tribute to Hillary's firsthand understanding of what it's like to be a working mom. (But it's also a tribute to my loving, amazing husband who's taken on the role of super dad.)
I will celebrate Mothers Day with my children knowing that Hillary has already made history and that my daughter can dream a bit bigger because of the path Hillary has blazed for her and millions of girls in our country. And I know that as President, Hillary will help ensure that we leave this country better off for both my children.

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