micah holmquist's irregular thoughts and links

Welcome to the musings and notes of a Cadillac, Michigan based writer named Micah Holmquist, who is bothered by his own sarcasm.

Please send him email at micahth@chartermi.net.

Holmquist's full archives are listed here.

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Sites Holmquist trys, and often fails, to go no more than a couple of days without visiting (some of which Holmquist regularly swipes links from without attribution)

Aljazeera.Net English
AlterNet (War on Iraq)
Alternative Press Review
Always Low Prices -- Always
Another Irani online
antiwar.com (blog)
Asia Times Online
Axis of Logic
Baghdad Burning (riverbend)
BBC News
blogdex.net ("track this weblog")
The Christian Science Monitor (Daily Update)
Common Dreams
Daily Rotten
Democracy Now
The Drudge Report
Eat the Press (Harry Shearer, The Huffington Post)
Empire Notes (Rahul Mahajan)
frontpagemag.com (HorowitzWatch)
Guardian Unlimited
The Independent
Information Clearing House
Informed Comment (Juan Cole)
Iranians for Peace

Iraq Dispatches (Dahr Jamail)
Iraqi Democrats Against Occupation
Iraq Occupation and Resistance Report (Psychoanalysts for Peace and Justice)
Mr. Show and Other Comedy
The Narco News Bulletin (blog)
The New York Times
Occupation Watch
Political Theory Daily Review
Press Action
Project Syndicate
Raed in the Middle (Raed Jarrar)
The Simpsons Archive
Simpsons Collector Sector
Technorati ("search for mth.blogspot.com")
United States Central Command
U.S. Embassy Baghdad, Iraq
War Report (Project on Defense Alternatives)
The Washington Post
Wildfire (Jo Wilding)
wood s lot
www.mnftiu.cc (David Rees)

Blogs that for one reason or another Holmquist would like to read on at least something of a regular basis (always in development)

Thivai Abhor
As'ad AbuKhalil
Ken Adrian
Christopher Allbritton
Douglas Anders
Mark W. Anderson
Aziz Ansari
Atomic Archive
James Benjamin
Elton Beard
Charlie Bertsch
alister black
Blame India Watch
Blog Left: Critical Interventions Warblog / war blog
Igor Boog
Martin Butler
Chris Campbell
James M. Capozzola
Avedon Carol
Elaine Cassel
cats blog
Jeff Chang
Margaret Cho
Citizens Of Upright Moral Character
Louis CK
Les Dabney
Natalie Davis
Scoobie Davis
The Day Job
Jodi Dean
Dominic Duval
Steve Earle
Daniel Ellsberg
Tom Engelhardt
Lisa English
Barbara Flaska
Brian Flemming
Joe Foster
Yoshie Furuhashi
Al Giordano
Rob Goodspeed
Grand Puba
Guardian Unlimited Weblog
Pete Guither
The Hairy Eyeball
Ray Hanania
Mark Hand
Hector Rottweiller Jr's Web Log Jim Henley Arvin Hill Hit & Run (Reason) Hugo Clark Humphrey Indri The Iraqi Agora Dru Oja Jay Jeff Lynne d Johnson Dallas Jones Julia Kane Blues Benjamin Kepple Ken Layne Phil Leggiere Brian Linse Adam Magazine Majority Report Radio Marc Maron Josh Marshall Jeralyn Merritt J.R. Mooneyham Michael Scott Moore Bob Morris Bob Mould Mr. Show and Tell Muslims For Nader/Camejo David Neiwert NewPages Weblog Aimee Nezhukumatathil Sean O'Brien Patton Oswalt The Panda's Thumb Randy Paul Rodger A. Payne Ian Penman politx Neal Pollack Greg Proops Pro-War.com Pure Polemics Seyed Razavi Rayne Simon Reynolds richardpryor.com Clay Richards Mike Rogers Yuval Rubinstein
Steven Rubio
Saragon Noah Shachtman Court Schuett The Simpsons Archive Amardeep Singh Sam Smith Soundbitten Jack Sparks Ian Spiers Morgan Spurlock Stand Down: The Left-Right Blog Opposing an Invasion of Iraq Aaron Stark Morgaine Swann Tapped (The American Prospect) tex Matthew Tobey Annie Tomlin Tom Tomorrow The University Without Condition Jesse Walker Warblogger Watch Diane Warth The Watchful Babbler The Weblog we have brains Matt Welch
Alex Whalen
Jon Wiener
Lizz Winstead
James Wolcott
Wooster Collective
Mickey Z

Friday, May 30, 2003
Maybe the hunt for WMD is par for the course

Neither the Central Intelligence Agency nor the United States Army have been able to find any trace of the "bunker" that the United States began Operation Iraqi Freedom by bombing, CBS News reported Wednesday.

What the story doesn't get into is what sort of priority was put into locating the site and determining if U.S. intelligence on the site had been accurate. It is possible that this information is just coming out in the press. It is also possible that intelligence agencies and the military only recently reached these conclusions. The latter scenario might possibly explain why the U.S. has not seemed to be in any hurry to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Is there a chance they aren't in a hurry to many of the things that presumably they would want to do as soon as possible?


"A dossier compiled by the government on Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction was rewritten to make it 'sexier' a senior British official has told the BBC," the BBC reported yesterday. The official was not named and according to the story said that the information in the final draft was changed so as to make Iraq's WMD programs seem more menacing. "The classic example was the statement that weapons of mass destruction were ready for use within 45 minutes," the BBC quotes the official as saying. "That information was not in the original draft. It was included in the dossier against our wishes because it wasn't reliable. Most things in the dossier were double source but that was single source and we believe that the source was wrong."

"The idea that we authorized or made our intelligence agencies invent some piece of evidence is completely absurd," British Prime Minister Tony Blair reportedly said today in response to the story.


"U.S. intelligence was 'simply wrong' in leading military commanders to believe their troops were likely to be attacked with chemical weapons in the Iraq war, the top U.S. Marine general there said on Friday," writes Charles Aldinger of Reuters in a story published this afternoon. The general quoted is Lieutenant General James T. Conway, who is currently the Commanding General, I Marine Expeditionary Force. No transcript of his comments is available as of this entry.

UPDATE: Here is the relevant exchange, from the transcript, involving Conway:

Q: It's John McWethy from ABC again, General. Back to the weapons of mass destruction. You had, we were led to believe, fairly credible intelligence indicating that some of the units that you would be encountering had live weapons of mass destruction, probably CW shells, that had been moved forward to deal with your units. At this point, understanding that the exploitation of the sites is still under way and that there are a lot of unanswered questions, do you feel that the intel was just wrong? Do you feel that the enemy may not have ever had any of these things in forward units?

It seems inconceivable that if they had them in the forward units that you have not found something in a forward unit, and not buried away in some storage area. Help us out here.

Conway: John, as Mark [Mazzetti of U.S. News and World Report] could probably tell you, the fact that we were, again, not hit with weapons of mass destruction -- I think we had four triggers that we were prepared to defend ourselves against -- different times when we thought that the regime might try to employ the weapons of mass destruction against us. And we truly thought that they were distributed -- not to everybody, not to the regular army divisions that we saw in the south. But my personal belief was that they probably did reside in the Republican Guard units, and we encountered, arguably, three, maybe four, Republican Guard divisions on the way to Baghdad. But my personal belief was that the Republican Guard corps commander probably had release authority, and that we might well see them when we started to encounter his force or enter his area.

It was a surprise to me then, it remains a surprise to me now, that we have not uncovered weapons, as you say, in some of the forward dispersal sites. Again, believe me, it's not for lack of trying. We've been to virtually every ammunition supply point between the Kuwaiti border and Baghdad, but they're simply not there. Now, what that means in terms of intelligence failure, I think, is too strong a word to use at this point. What the regime was intending to do in terms of its use of the weapons, we thought we understood or we certainly had our best guess, our most dangerous, our most likely courses of action that the intelligence folks were giving us. We were simply wrong. But whether or not we're wrong at the national level, I think, still very much remains to be seen.

Whitman had this to say about securing sites where WMDs may be:
...we continue to contribute our part in the south against SSEs -- sensitive sites, if you will -- that may yield weapons of mass destruction. We've put teams on virtually every one that intelligence or local Iraqis or any other means has pointed out to us as perhaps might be containing weapons of mass destruction, or residuals of those kinds of things or whatever.
I wonder when that started. 5:31 p.m. 05/30/03