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02/24 Morning Report

The North Koreans seem to be continuing their course for settlement of nuclear issues. Earlier this month, they agreed to close their reactor in exchange for fuel aid. Now, they are welcoming inviting the UN nuclear chief Mohamed ElBaradei to talk some more. ElBaradei said “he hoped to discuss the suspension of North Korea’s nuclear activity.”
(…does any one else see shades of Hussein and Ahmadinejad…).

Speaking of the Iranian head of state, as if it’s a big surprise, he’s defying the UN again.

The UN Security Council had given Iran until 21 February to halt uranium enrichment.

But the IAEA concluded in a report on Thursday that Iran was expanding rather than halting its enrichment programme, defying a UN resolution of December 2006.

And, as usual, the UN is choosing to negotiate—while threatening force.
(…isn’t that special!…)

Meanwhile, isn’t it interesting that “detaining at the border” is the same as seizing and then releasing? Well, according to the NY TIMES it’s the same thing. Of course, according to the article, the Iraqis—specifically the Shiites—think so, too.

“They arrested me and my guards in an unsuitable way, and they bound my hands and blindfolded me,” he said. “They took our phones, bags, money, documents and the guards’ weapons, and sent us to an American base.”

If I’m not mistaken, standard procedure when someone is detained is to take them to a facility to determine what to do next. Of course, these should be something of a clue:

(supposedly) Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, a Shiite who depends on Mr. Hakim’s support, intervened to help release the son
(…snip…)
One of Amar al-Hakim’s most prominent public roles of late has been canvassing the Shiite provinces of southern Iraq to build support for his father’s controversial plan to cleave nine Shiite provinces into an autonomous region
(…snip…)
Amar al-Hakim was educated mostly in Iran…

Maliki depends on al-Sadra and Hakim for support? The two don’t like each other’s ideas. But, both are seeking Shiite expansion and control…just like Iran.
(…I don’t see any problems here…do you?…)

The Times is also making a point of showing that President Bush is planning a war against Iran. The idea of protecting US soldiers and interests seems to automatically mean wanting a war. When do we hear the outcry for supplying weapons to those who are murdering Iraqi civilians—along with American troops?
(…wouldn’t that be a switch…)

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