The Spectacle Blog

We Can Hear You …

By on 8.10.06 | 8:48PM

Lost amid the success by British intelligence and law enforcement in breaking up parts of the airline terror threat is the fact that U.S. intelligence sources were in on the case. How?

Well, let's just say the NSA should come out of this case looking pretty good. And whoever leaked classified information about international eavesdropping on terrorist conversations should be getting very nervous. This British case just became Exhibit A for how important the listening program is.

Questions for Homeland Chief Chertoff:

By on 8.10.06 | 7:30PM

Exactly how many "student" visas are issued annually to those from Islamic States? How many actually go to their stated destinations (thinking of the covey of missing Egyptians who never made it to Bozeman, Montana, but who were not, the FBI assured us long before that little dustup in Britain, "terrorist" suspects) and how many actually meet the terms of their visa and go home? A corollary: how many are missing and unaccounted for right now in the United States?

And while you're at it, Judge Michael, stop entertaining the media's fascination with some connection between the would-be aircraft bombers and Al Qaeda. It makes no difference what other affiliations an Islamic Jihadist happens to have and so long as Osama has king's X in Pafganistan it never will.


It’s Always Bush’s Fault

By on 8.10.06 | 1:08PM

From Harry Reid's statement on the British terror plot:

This latest plot demonstrates the need for the Bush administration and the Congress to change course in Iraq and ensure that we are taking all the steps necessary to protect Americans at home and across the world.

What Voters?

By on 8.10.06 | 12:58PM

The bias begins right at the top: Gwen Ifill's second question to Ned Lamont on yesterday's Lehrer Newshour reads: "So what did last night's victory tell you about what voters in Connecticut want?" The presumption that liberal Democrats (a.k.a. voters) speak for everybody is not one a publicly supported journalist should be sharing.

In the Washington Post's letters section today, the single letter about Lieberman-Lamont trashes Lieberman for his "super-sized ego" and reminds him that "Connecticut voters rejected him." Again, not liberal/Democratic primary voters, but (all) Connecticut voters.

Ifill's interviews with Lamont and then Lieberman had their uses, though. The contrast between the elated Lamont and the deflated Lieberman was striking, suggesting Lieberman will have to summon some new fire and energy if his second-half comeback is to be more than half-time wishful thinking.