On Tuesday, whistle-blower and Iraq War veteran Bradley Manning was convicted in a military court of 20 of the 22 charges against him. We covered this in Tuesday's snapshot. A few e-mailers, not just visitors but some community members as well, are bothered by what they see as a lack of coverage since. Community members will get a ruling from Beth in next Thursday's gina & krista round-robin because I've forwarded your e-mails on to her. (Beth has acted as our ombudsperson for this site since 2005.) She may or may not agree with you, that's her call. She's the community member who acts as the independent critic of this site. Non-community members do not get any of the newsletters so I'll respond to your general comments here.
Brad was not dropped after Tuesday's snapshot. He is part of these two Wednesday entries (I'd argue he's the focus):
Wednesday, we reported on the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. From Trina 's Friday morning post:
It's a good column [Dave Lindorff's] but what it actually reminded me of was the Wednesday
Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that C.I. reported on "Iraq snapshot," Wally's "THIS JUST IN! RUSS FEINGOLD WHERE ARE YOU NOW!" and Cedric's "Punchline: US Senate," Ava's "Blumenthal disappoints (Ava)," Wally's ""Leahy and Feinstein are disgraces," Ann's "The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing" and Kat's "The Constitution has been shredded."
Read their reports. The Committee didn't want to address how outrageous
it was that spying was going on, they wanted to put a few limits on the
spying so it could continue. It was disgusting.
Sorry but I think we did a better job than anyone in covering that hearing. Even the day after, there were people praising that nonsense hearing. The House Judiciary Committee hearing (as Wally points out) was the real deal. The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing was a fraud. And I can tell you two members of the Committee share my opinion of that.
The issue (spying) was important enough that it was going to be included (and we've covered that issue for some time now). It was also true that Brad and NSA whistle-blower Ed Snowden were going to be mentioned at least in passing (and were) and that's noted as well.
I am not in the military court room. I'm not offering reporting on Brad's trial. Friday night or Saturday morning, I usually get an update (over the phone) of what's taken place that week. I worked some of those details into Tuesday's snapshot. But I'm not reporting on the trial.
There are people who are and you can refer to them. After military judge Colonel Denise Lind made her Tuesday ruling, the case entered the sentencing phase. We noted that on Wednesday and on Friday.
Thursday was August 1st. Violence reached a record high for the year in Iraq for the month of July. That was expected. I always knew that Thursday's snapshot would be about recounting how it got to that point and about working in Kenneth Pollack's analysis. I actually like Pollack's analysis. It's a huge turning point in the US discussion of Iraq. He's actually picked up many points that everyone's ignored for a long time. I'm hopeful that an honest discussion of Iraq may take place before 2016. After the way Michael Gordon and Bernard Trainor's Endgame was ignored, I honestly was expecting the US press and talking heads to dummy up until after Barack was out of office. And maybe that will still happen but Pollack's picked up a number of elements that anyone who speaks truthfully will need to include. I'm not a Pollack fan. I don't treat Brookings as the voice of God. But I will praise this analysis because it offers more honesty than anything I've seen published in the US. He's a centrist, I'm far-left. He offered far more honesty than I ever would have expected.
Did it get coverage though? I don't know. I was working the phones for Brad and Ed all week long. Another week, I would have been able to push Pollack's analysis.
Okay, the only thing I'm finding is the stupidity of Michael Maiello at Esquire. From the title of his piece, I knew I would disagree with Maiello ("Kenneth Pollack: If Only We Could Reinvade Iraq") but I was curious to see how he was going to make this argument.
Maiello can't. He's dishonest. He emphasizes this by Pollack:
In an alternative universe, the United States might re-intervene in
Iraq, redeploying tens of thousands of soldiers to restore everyone's
sense of safety and allowing the political process to heal again. In
this universe, the United States is never going to intervene in Iraq
again, nor will the Maliki government ever request that we do so.
Using that quote, Maiello argues: