A two-year corruption investigation by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) into a Ã‚Â£60 million "slush fund" that was allegedly set up for members of Saudi Arabia's royal family was discontinued today.
Payments, in the form of lavish holidays, a fleet of luxury cars including a gold Rolls-Royce, rented apartments and other perks, are alleged to have been paid to ensure the Saudis continued to buy from BAE under the so-called Al-Yamamah deal.
Some timely reportage from The Times! Who knew they were still capable of it?
Detainee 200343 was among thousands of people who have been held and released by the American military in Iraq, and his account of his ordeal has provided one of the few detailed views of the Pentagonâ€™s detention operations since the abuse scandals at Abu Ghraib. Yet in many respects his case is unusual.
Larry details a lot of stuff you probably already know; Bush doesn't have a clue about the major players in the Iraq insurgency, the war is a miserable failure, etc. But one part really stood out in his essay. Keep in mind he's probably got plenty of friends in the military and intelligence community, and is likely to know:
Read more about Cowardly Generals at the DoD
Yeah, the passionately evangelical Episcopal congregations in Falls Church, and Truro VA are going to go get themselves a Bishop that hates gays just as much as they do. In fact, they're willing to go all the way to Nigeria! From Political Spaghetti: Read more about Gay haters split the Episcopal Church
It looks like the hamsters that wire the comments together with the posts are turning their cages more slowly than usual, meaning that some past comments are not connected to their posts. They're in the database, however, and the database has not been corrupted. So I need to go, erm, talk to the hamsters. In the meantime, feel free to comment or, if you have an account, to post. Read more about Comments
...and I bet it wouldn't be screened for BSE, either.
This little piece from the Department of Extremely Obvious Things causes me to want to ask a question. I know we've got the occasional Christian and Christianist reader here (although, one less, it seems) and here's what I want you to tell me: upon what does your belief that Jesus Christ was a real person rest? I'm not trying to be snarky here, I'm curious. Read more about Today's Volley in the War on Christmas
I put this under "why can't we do that" because I'm trying to help people understand my one mantra in Iraq: There Is No "Winning" There. Steve asks a really good question about two officers who recently were killed in Iraq:
Read more about A Clear Lack of Intelligence in Iraq, Part 83473
This may very well be nothing but an insignificant bit of urban crime. But look at the players, examine the scenario, and tell me if this shouldn't have gotten just a little more attention perhaps? Albuquerque Tribune:
Read more about An Oddly Underreported Story
Sean-Paul has got the goods. He's the expert when it comes to Iran; I don't claim to know too much about internal Iranian politics, but from what I can tell from his post and links, the results are a "mixed bag." I hope the Iranian people can find what they're looking for in their newest elected officials, and I'm glad that at least some reformers and "progressives" were both allowed to run, and victorious. Read more about Iranian Election Update
Incoming Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Sunday he would support a temporary troop increase in Iraq only if it were part of a broader strategy to bring combat forces home by early 2008.
"If the commanders on the ground said this is just for a short period of time, we'll go along with that," said Reid, D-Nev., citing a time frame such as two months to three months. But a period longer than that, such as 18 months to 24 months, would be unacceptable, he said.