Evening Roundup Feb 18, 2008 -- Headchopping lessons from daddy
After the Read More!
A dad shows his son how to behead British soldiers. Serbia recalls its ambassadors from nations which have recognized Kosovo. In Iraq, reconciliation by the Coalition on the one hand and executions by al-Qaeda on the other. Hillary and Obama now neck and neck in Texas. Now the the "human rights officer" who interrogated Ezra Levant has resigned.
Poor little Abrar. His father, who lived on welfare, decided to find meaning in his life by plotting to behead British soldiers who were Muslims. I can't help thinking that Parviz Khan was a sad specimen of man whose ability to intimidate extended only to five year old boys. The Daily Mail tells the story of a man sentenced to jail for conspiring to kill a soldier of the Queen.
"Islamist fanatic" Parviz Khan was secretly taped ordering little Abrar to swear allegiance to Osama Bin Laden under threat of a beating with a stick.
He was also recorded asking his son Abrar: "Who do you love?" The child answered: "Sheik Osama Bin Laden. Sheik Abu Hamza" - a reference to the jailed hook-handed Finsbury Park Mosque cleric. Khan - who was paid £20,000 a year in benefits ... wanted Basiru Gassama, a Gambian national, to find a Muslim soldier who would then be lured to his death with cocaine during a night out in central Birmingham.
'Some damned fool thing in the Balkans.' Serbia withdrew its ambassadors from Washington and other major capitals in protest as the US and other European powers prepared to recognize Kosovo's independence. Reuters has a list of who will and who won't recognize the new country. China's ambassador to the United Nations warned that Kosovo's independence could split the U.N., and repeated his country's "deep concern" over the nascent state's unilateral move.
The Telegraph says the chances Kosovo can join the UN over the objections of Russia and China are small. With the international community split on the legitimacy of Kosovo, the Serbs are talking about encouraging their enclaves in the area to break away.
All in all Kosovo has created a great deal of diplomatic trouble. The EU has staked a great deal of its prestige on the outcome of a shaky deal in the Balkans. What is at stake to make it all worthwhile?
There will be no celebrations for the Serbs at least. Harry de Quetteville who has toured Kosovo says it's easy to spot a Serbian house in the new country. It's the one ringed with razor wire and guarded by KFOR troops. How will the Serbs far under the protection of the EU's 'army in suits' a "a justice and law mission of 2,000 police, judges and administrators" that is now being sent to the area?
Two articles serve as bookends to the situation in Iraq. Fred Barnes describes a series of laws that have been passed by the Iraqi parliament to institutionalize reconciliation and the fruit the Surge. "The most controversial--and the toughest to enact--gives significant power to provincial councils and mandates new provincial elections by October 1. As a result, leaders of the so-called Sunni Awakening who have broken with al Qaeda and insurgents are all but certain to gain power. And Iraq will have a decentralized, federal system of government."
The other bookend is a CNN news story describing the last, desperate attempts by al-Qaeda to keep its death grip on its final strongholds. "Video provided to CNN shows an al Qaeda in Iraq firing squad executing one-time allies -- fellow Sunni extremists -- who were not loyal enough to the terror organization, coalition military analysts said."
Question: is Barack Obama still going to withdraw troops as fast as he can no matter what?
Hot Air reports that Hillary's Texas "must-win is now a may-lose. He’s a 70% favorite for the nomination on InTrade as I write this; after tomorrow’s victory in Wisconsin plus another few weeks of campaigning, it’ll be 80% heading into March 4."
Meanwhile, Roger L. Simon wonders whether Barack Obama is peaking too soon. His experience in Hollywood may have led him to the belief that time is the enemy of fame.
Ezra Levant is unsympathetic to to job loss of a human rights bureaucrat charged with investigating him for publishing the Mohammed cartoons. I guess the bureaucrats thought it was safe enough to begin but the public outrage at the human rights inquisition generated soon made the job like trying to polish a running buzz saw or trying to floss with a razor blade. It can be done but why bother? In the end you've got to wonder what the bureaucrats who decided to make a case out of something like the cartoons in Canada were thinking. I'll bet the bureaucrats have decided by now that they weren't.
In a loosely related development, French police have raided housing estates to arrest youths suspected of inciting some of the recent riots in Paris. "They were suspects in the investigation into violent riots in these suburbs last November, which followed the deaths of two teenagers in a motorbike crash with a police car."
At some point even the worm turns.