June 08, 2006

Got the Motherfucker

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is dead.

Zarqawi.jpg

UPDATE: A Kurdish Iraqi friend sent me the following email from Erbil.

Yes, Zarqawi was killed and sent to the dustbin of history...

Congratulations to all the Iraqi people...

Congratulations to the families of Zarqawi victims, civilians, children, Iraqi army and police...

Congratulations to the families of the fallen brave American GIs and multinational forces helping transfer Iraq from dictatorship to democracy...

Congratulations to all the gallant Peshmerga forces who are actively participating in hunting down Al-Qaeda and Zarqawi's mercenaries...

Congratulations to all freedom and peace lovers all over the world...

To hell Mr. Zarqawi ...

May Bin Laden be next...Amen...

Posted by Michael J. Totten at June 8, 2006 01:03 AM
Comments

Yesss!

This is the first place I've seen/heard the news!

Congratulations to our military men and women.

Josh Scholar

Posted by: Josh Scholar at June 8, 2006 01:21 AM

Yes indeed, the rat bastard is dead. I caught the news on MSNBC around 3 a.m.

Bravo to our military. Bravo to the Iraqis. Keep knocking down the jihadist scumbags. Keep knockin' em down.

Posted by: Rafique Tucker at June 8, 2006 02:22 AM

I am almost in tears...thank God! This is a huge step in the security of Iraq

Posted by: buzzhead at June 8, 2006 03:17 AM

I am almost in tears...thank God! This is a huge step in the security of Iraq

Posted by: buzzhead at June 8, 2006 03:17 AM

P-tooey.

Good riddance to bad rubbish.

Posted by: GZ Expat at June 8, 2006 03:37 AM

"Goatfucker" would be more appropriate.

Posted by: Mr. K at June 8, 2006 03:47 AM

Wow, what a great news to start the day with...
I wish the same fate for all the terrorists who kill civilians in Iraq and everywhere else in the world.
VIVA USA
Thanks USA
Long Live the USA
Long Live Kurds and Kurdistan

Posted by: Abdulla Dizayee at June 8, 2006 03:49 AM

Allahu Akbar! ;)

I salute our troops, Godspeed men and women.

I now await the howls from the usual suspects: "Zarqawi was bad but .... was he Mirandized before they bombed him?" Har hat har.

Posted by: JoseyWales at June 8, 2006 04:20 AM

Pity that Zarqawi and Abed Al-Rachman (Yeah, we got a two-fer!) went so quick. The Air Force's Mjolnir impersonation was too quick and painless an ending. They should have gone out like Uday & Qusay...

Posted by: Cybrludite at June 8, 2006 04:23 AM

I thought of you as soon as I saw the news. A good thing indeed and a blessing for the people of Iraq.

But I'll have to add him to my daily list of dead enemies to pray for, including Mohammed Atta and Uday and Qusay Hussein; I can't join in the wishes for Hell. Requiem aeternam dona ei, Domine; requiescat in pace.

May God show Zarqawi in death the mercy and compassion that he denied to others in life.

Posted by: Jeff at June 8, 2006 04:31 AM

Hopefully the sufferings of the people of Iraq will lessen.

Posted by: Lira at June 8, 2006 05:07 AM

Hopefully this will help the security situation in Iraq to stabilize. It won't hurt, that's for sure.

But it's also important to remember that Zarqawi is a symptom of a disease, not the disease himself.

Posted by: semite1973 at June 8, 2006 05:55 AM

Hi Guys,

I'm as happy about it as you are, but I'm afraid to say, its probably not that important.

StrategyPage had this to say about it to days ago:

http://www.strategypage.com

.....

Except for his verbal attacks on the U.S. and the Iraqi government, he is almost totally distanced himself from the central leadership. Other al Qaeda leaders have been trying to down play anti-Iranian and anti-Shia rhetoric, and have been strongly discouraging attacks on civilians.

Given that Zarqawi has become a loose cannon and that his actions are handicapping Al Qaeda's efforts, it seems reasonable to expect that an accident may befall him at some point in the near future.

....
He was probably turned in by one of his own. He had become too much of a handicap for Al Qaeda.

James

Posted by: James Becker at June 8, 2006 06:18 AM

While I agree that Zarqawi was a bad man who deserved to answer for his crimes, I think to imagine for even a moment that things will improve in Iraq as a result of his demise is totally naive. The United States has a way of creating poster villains and convincing a population raised on Sylvester Stallone movies that if we can just kill The Bad Guy everything will be ok. Is that our strategy, to just keep killing terrorists until there are none left? Can we not acknowledge that in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the rest of the world our policies and actions are creating more terrorists than they are eradicating? Until we try to identify and deal with the root causes of radical Islam this "War on Terror" will not end.

Posted by: Justin Parmenter at June 8, 2006 06:19 AM

Washington Times: "Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said al-Zarqawi was killed along with seven aides Wednesday evening ... "

Seven turds with one flush. Good job.

Suppose Jimmie Carter will fly over for the funeral?

Posted by: BigMax at June 8, 2006 06:23 AM

Washington Times: "Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said al-Zarqawi was killed along with seven aides Wednesday evening ... "

Seven turds with one flush. Good job.

Do the math, it's 8 turds.

Suppose Jimmie Carter will fly over for the funeral?
Now what's the point of a dumb comment like that? Did Jimmy Carter piss in your pool or something?

Posted by: vanya at June 8, 2006 06:40 AM

Justin, the "Poster Villians" would still be villians regardless of the what the United States has or will do. It's not about US policy, it's about their lust for personal power and glory.
Your idea of killing every last terrorist is one of the sanest solutions I've heard.

Posted by: Paul MacPhail at June 8, 2006 07:01 AM

May he rest without peace.

Posted by: CP at June 8, 2006 07:08 AM

if you're married, do you still get the 77 virgins?

Posted by: tim at June 8, 2006 07:20 AM

May he rest in pieces.

Posted by: Mark H. at June 8, 2006 07:26 AM

At last! A post about Iraq.

Posted by: double-plus-ungood at June 8, 2006 07:31 AM

What else need be said ?

"GOT THE MUTHERFUCKER".

Rot in hell.

Oops, I guess that sentiment falls under multiple examples of political incorrectness.

Oh well. Luckily I have learned to embrace my 'diversity', and accepted the demands of being a fascist warmonger. Allows me to truly ENJOY this excellent news.

And the icing on the cake--- his 'spiritual advisor' is rotting right along with him according to the reports I read.

Posted by: dougf at June 8, 2006 08:57 AM

Perhaps someone someday can explain the lunatic world live in that can somehow explain how Nick Berg's father weeps for Zarquawi... his son was a good guy and friends with Iraqis, well liked at the gym in Iraq he worked out at... and Zarquawi cut his head off while he was screaming in a blood curdling sound... while Zarquawi chanted Allahu Akhbar....

Nick Berg's Father Weeps for Zarqawi

Posted by: Mike Nargizian at June 8, 2006 11:55 AM

I hope we bury the sob wrong.

Posted by: ericm at June 8, 2006 11:57 AM

To paraphrase Jacques Chirac, Hamas missed a perfect opportunity to shut up, when they instead publicly mourned the death of Zarqawi at the hands of the savage crusader campaign aimed at the Arab heartland. And just when everybody was starting to forget the image of the Palestinian fatmas flashing V signs and tossing candies on 9/11. What a bunch of assholes.

Posted by: MarkC at June 8, 2006 12:23 PM

This is a certainly a momentous day in the history of Iraq and the US’ involvement. Please visit my blog for an analysis of al-Zarqawi’s decapitation and the repercussions on Iraq, the US and politics moving forward.

Posted by: The Egyptian Observer at June 8, 2006 12:42 PM

Hamas missed a perfect opportunity to shut up

Isn't that the truth? Sunni Islamist fanatics could really learn a thing or two from their Shia brethren when it comes to playing realpolitik on matters of diplomacy, and putting on a respectable facade for the international community. Hizbollah, the Iranian mullahs, and even Muqtada Al-Sadr are well ahead of Hamas and Al-Qaeda on that count.

Maybe it has something to do with the differences in Shia and Sunni theology, and specifically the Shia belief that their faith isn't destined to reign supreme until the Hidden Imam arrives. Whereas Sunni fanatics believe that it's their place to establish a global caliphate here and now.

Posted by: Eric at June 8, 2006 02:10 PM

Eric,

I think the Shia fanatics really are more moderate than the Sunni fanatics. It's not just PR.

Anyway, the Iranian regime is actually quite terrible at PR, and Hezbollah isn't half as good at it as they're reputed to be.

It's true, though, that Hamas and Al Qaeda don't even try to put on a nice face for the world. The PLO and Fatah were pretty good at it, but they weren't and aren't Islamists.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at June 8, 2006 02:24 PM

Eric mentioned Muqtada Al Sadr. Now there is a piece of head chopping expertise that would be welcome to join Zaqawri any time.
TG

Posted by: TonyGuitar at June 8, 2006 02:39 PM

Michael, I agree that the Iranian regime isn't great at PR, in large part because it doesn't talk with a single voice - old guard clerics like Khameinei say one thing, reformists like Khatami will say another, "pragmatic conservatives" like Larijani will utter something else, and firebrand military/Basij types like Ahmedinejad will say something else still.

But they are pretty good at diplomatic maneuvering, since diplomacy is a space where they can maintain something of a united front. Just look at the way they used the reformist card to reestablish ties with the European powers, and the way in which their gamesmanship has allowed them to get away with their nuclear program for several years now.

Regarding the Shia extremists being more moderate than the Sunni ones, I think that depends on where you look. Hizbollah appears a bit less fanatical than Hamas and Al-Qaeda, and the Iranian clerical leadership has mellowed a bit since Khomeinei's heyday. But Muqtada Al-Sadr's minions are still responsible for plenty of sectarian killings in Iraq, and Ahmedinejad and his hard-core supporters still have some of that old revolutionary zeal. I'd still posit that part of the difference stems from the way their theology drives them to compromise.

Posted by: Eric at June 8, 2006 03:28 PM

I hope it hurt.

Posted by: Todd Grimson at June 8, 2006 03:41 PM

I got an interesting email from Free Muslims Against Terrorism:

Al-Zarqawi is Dead, What is Next?

By Kamal Nawash

Al-Zarqawi, the most-wanted terrorist in Iraq who waged a relentless campaign of beheadings and suicide bombings, was killed when U.S. warplanes dropped bombs on his hiding place in Baqouba, Iraq.

In response to his killing, President Bush stated that the elimination of Zarqawi is "a severe blow to al-Qaida" and that it was a significant victory. Al-Qaida in Iraq on the other hand confirmed al-Zarqawi's death and posted on their website: "The death of our leaders is life for us. It will only increase our persistence.."

So what will be the significance of Zarqawi's death? Will Zarqawi's death cause the insurgency to subside?

The answer to these questions lies in understanding who Zarqawi represents. Of the Iraqi resistance or insurgency, Zarqawi represents a small number of no more than a few hundred people who are often referred to as "jihadist." These people are motivated by an austere, violent and disciplined ideology that is NOT shared by the overwhelming majority of the Iraqi resistance or insurgency. Nevertheless, to operate in Iraq, Zarqawi and his followers needed the protection of the larger Iraqi insurgency who represent approximately seven million Sunni Arabs. The interesting note here is that the overwhelming numbers of Sunni Arabs in Iraq also reject the fanatical ideology of people like Zarqawi and would turn against people like Zarqawi and his followers in an instant if it suited their purpose. In fact, news reports indicate that many of the tips about Zarqawi's whereabouts came from Iraqis who were associated with Zarqawi but probably did not share his fanatical ideaolgy. Thus, the ultimate question is why are the Sunni Muslim Arabs giving sanctuary to "Jihadists" like Zarqawi when most of the Sunni Arabs DON'T share his ideology? The answer to this question is also the solution for Iraq's problems and the roadmap to ending the violence in Iraq.

The Sunni Arabs represent approximately 20% percent of Iraq's population. While many of them did not support Saddam Hussein the toppling of Saddam Hussein affected them in a negative way. Among their grievances is the issue of Debathification. This is a process by which the new Iraqi government targeted those who were members of the former ruling Baath party. This process disproportionately affected Sunni Arabs who either lost their jobs or were not allowed to seek government jobs because of their past membership in the Baath party. Those who were members of the Baath party argue their membership was out of necessity and it is not fair to target them.

A second grievance of the Sunni Arabs is that they want Iraq to remain united and intact. Since the toppling of Saddam Hussein, Iraq has ventured into a lose federation that brings enormous fear to the Sunni Arabs. Iraq is roughly divided into three jurisdictions. The Kurds who live in the oil rich north, the Shias who live in the oil rich South and the Sunnis who live in the center which has no oil. The Sunni Arabs want an equitable distribution of resources so that they do not become impoverished while the others prosper.

Another of many concerns the Sunni Arabs have with post Saddam Iraq is that Kurdish areas are behaving like a separate country. The new government of Iraq has almost no control over the Kurdish areas. Iraqi ministries don't have offices in those areas and the Iraqi military does not venture in the Kurdish areas. The Sunni Arabs fear that Kurdish areas may break off from Iraq and divide the country.

To address their concerns the Sunni Arabs want to amend the new Iraqi constitution which they feel does not represent them. Thus, to answer the initial question, the death of Zarqawi is a great accomplishment and will probably be yet another nail in Al-Qaida coffin. However, the death of Zarqawi will have a marginal impact on the insurgency in Iraq. If the United States wants peace in Iraq then the concerns of the Sunni Arabs must be given serious consideration or the war in Iraq will only get bigger and the Sunni Arabs will continue to harbor criminals like Zarqawi and his deadly followers who are coming from all over the Muslim world to fight a "holy war."

Kamal Nawash is the president of the Free Muslims Coalition Against Terrorism

Please respond to this article by posting your comments in our Free Speech Zone at:
http://www.freemuslims.org/blog/

For more information, visit our website at http://www.freemuslims.org

Posted by: Josh Scholar at June 8, 2006 03:43 PM

So It's interesting to note that Zarqawi's sectarian violence has been forcing Iraq to partition.

If Iraq partitions on sectarian lines, then it's the Sunnis who will be left living in a country without any oil, since it's the Kurdish areas in the north and the Shiite areas in the south that have oil, not the center of the country.

Thus, even by the most narrow definition of self interest, it's in Sunnis best interest to flush out the Jihadis.

Posted by: Josh Scholar at June 8, 2006 03:45 PM

Justin,
The only way to beat them is to force them to recognize that they can't win. As we eliminate their leaders one-by-one, they will realize that theirs is a lost cause, and surrender. We have just administered a teriffic shock to them, and we need to keep up the pressure.

Posted by: A. Nonymous at June 8, 2006 04:47 PM

Praise to God (or G-d/Allah, si vous plait) for this news! One less evil shit in the Near East, and something that most Americans and Iraqis can feel good about together, heh.

Sadly it seems MJT's blog has been hijacked by posters like Josh and Carol who regurgitate things they have just read and almost appear to be having conversations with themselves or noone at all.

When are you going to Persia man??
Have you thought about Yemen, Ethiopia (plus Eritrea/Djibouti - of course), Oman, Morocco, Sudan or the African Sahel.. Central Asia and/or the Caucasus would rock too. Oooo... the Balkans (with the world's newest state!). Sounds like a Kaplan book. You may have addressed this already, if so sorry but your travel writing is superior to all else by far.

Are you planning to post more pictures from your travels that you haven't posted yet? Perhaps Kurdistan?

Posted by: Rommel at June 8, 2006 06:00 PM

Good the rat bastard is dead...What kind of freedom fighter kills the people he is supposed to be fighting for?

Whoever is saying this won't have an impact is wrong. True, the violence will continue, however, you fail to appreciate the power of symbols. Zarqawi was a symbol, and his demise will have an impact on those that commit terrorist acts against civilians in Iraq. However, it won't have an impact on the insurgency that targets U.S. troops.

Posted by: Omega80 at June 8, 2006 06:27 PM

Good. One murderous thug down.

Is it just me, or is my impression that Zarqawi's followers have killed more Iraqis than anyone else (save for Saddam, but that was pre-invasion) accurate?

Posted by: elmondohummus at June 8, 2006 07:25 PM

One hopefully positive development that's been overlooked today is that the Iraqi government appointed a Sunni Arab to be the country's Defense Minister, and someone who appears to be a moderate Shia (he used to be an Iraqi Air Force officer during the Saddam years) to be its Interior Minister.

Given how two of the largest complaints of Sunni Arabs have been a lack of adequate representation in higher-level ministry positions, and the hijacking of the Interior Ministry by Shia extremists (who in turn used it to run death squads and torture chambers targeting Sunnis), this could be as important as the Zarqawi news, depending on how things pan out.

Posted by: Eric at June 8, 2006 07:26 PM

Posted by Omega80 at June 8, 2006 06:27 PM
Zarqawi was a symbol,
======================================

Exactly what i've been saying all day :)

Tse.

Posted by: tsedek at June 8, 2006 08:32 PM

In some ways it's actually too bad that the huge long term issue of appointing new Ministers has to share the news with the huge short term fact that Zarqawi is dead.

If Iraq splits, it will be because Sunnis were unwilling to vote for those who wrote the constitution, to allow Kurdish autonomy, AND because they accept the violence. Without the terrorist murders, supported by the Sunnis, the death squad reaction and possible split wouldn't be on the table as much.

The Sunnis should have been fighting for an Oil Trust so that half of all oil revenue goes directly to citizens, or at least voters. But Sunni leaders betrayed the Sunni people in their willingness to accept anti-Liberation terrorism.

Justin is mostly silly: "Can we not acknowledge that in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the rest of the world our policies and actions are creating more terrorists than they are eradicating? Until we try to identify and deal with the root causes of radical Islam this "War on Terror" will not end."

The root cause of radical Islam is that the Cold War caused the USA & West to support dictators opposed to communism -- and those Arab/ Muslim dictators are mostly terrible. No free speech nor free religion, the two most basic Human Rights, which even the poorest country can easily allow.

Bush's liberations of Afghanistan and Iraq are exactly addressing the root causes, and changing them.

Can the Left not see that changing root causes takes time, like many years, not many TV shows? The 2001 WTC attacks were the result of 8 years of Clinton's policies, which had followed the disastrous Bush Sr. policy, as requested by the UN, of liberating Kuwait without booting Saddam. Can't the Left see that following UN policies means supporting gov'ts that violate rights, supporting peace keepers that require sex for food from 14 year olds, that "talk peace but walk corruption and dictatorship"?

I certainly don't accept the idea that the Bush actions are creating more terrorists than would be there without, or with a non-Iraq war policy. It might be true, but it might be false. It seems more likely that the growth path established since Carter refused to fight the evil takeover of the US embassy, and especially since the US was funding anti-commie Islamists in Afghanistan, that growth path was already set and rapidly increasing the number of terrorists. To show greater or lesser terrorist recruitment, one would have to define the pre-Iraq invasion (or pre-Afghanistan invasion?) growth path, INCLUDING the huge increase based on the successful WTC attack.

I don't see how one can separate the terrorist growth after the huge WTC success with the current Long War--but to assert that after 9/11 terrorist growth is due to Bush fighting, rather than "successful mass murder" publicity, is almost certainly not provable. Thus, it's just a belief which contradicts my own belief that the WTC terrorist success caused many potential terrorists to think ... 'yeah! The USA is a Paper Tiger, weak horse, we can WIN! All we have to do is KILL, and get Publicity, and the West will surrender!'

The root cause of the terrorism is the belief, in the terrorists, that the West is unwilling to fight them. You, Justin, are helping the terrorists have that belief. You should be saying what you think the root cause not being addressed IS, if you have some actual thought on that rather mere PC goosestepping Bush-hate.

[Yes, another boring post/ lecture by Tom Grey -- I DO have my own blog, with many comments cross posted. But Michael certainly won't read me there (too boring!), so I put them here, first. I truly wish I could learn to write as clearly as MJT, and have for over 3 years now...]

Posted by: Tom Grey - Libertay Dad at June 9, 2006 01:04 AM

Right, humor--my Word spell check offers:
goosestep ping

I think that applies to PC folk.

Posted by: Tom Grey - Libertay Dad at June 9, 2006 01:13 AM

Well, Tom Grey, perhaps a growing number of people who resent the growing economic disparity in the world and American economic and political bullying has something to do with it. Perhaps indiscriminate killing of civilians, desecration of mosques by 18 year old soldiers from Nebraska, and a war that has been mismanaged in every way from the very beginning have something to do with it. Perhaps the fact that we support dictators when it fits our current world view (Saddam in the 80s), then put them on trial when they start threatening our economic power (Saddam's invasion of Kuwait and fear he would continue to Saudi Arabia) has something to do with it, as people realize the United States doesn't give a rat fuck about anyone but itself.

Justin Parmenter

ps--Suck my balls.

Posted by: Justin Parmenter at June 9, 2006 09:20 AM

Justin,

As a person who is not an American and as someone whose family has been on the receiving side of what you would call America's "indiscriminate killing of civilians" and all the rest, and as someone who reads Michael's blog now and then and thus hears the voices of many people who would totally disagree with you and at the same time are not Americans either, and who are in fact most directly caught up in the current battle America and its allies fight, and as someone who also knows his share of people around the world and has spent a great deal of time in the places with the people you supposedly feel yourself speaking for, to begin with, I can say this: your-- "America is the cause"-- root causes spiel gives aid and comfort to ideologies and thugs around the world who couldn't give a shit about economic prosperity and justice. You are an enabler, a useful idiot. You believe the hype of those who lord over their citizens, or of those in the West who benefit from having tyrants lord over their citizens, and whose great safety valve is "blame America." It wouldn't work as well as it does of course, but for Americans like you who allow their sleight of hand and rhetoric to have such a prominent place in "thoughtful" society. While I agree, America, in the past has at times not made good choices. Fundamentally. It. Has. And Does. And Is. In WORD and DEED. Admirable. Especially the last few years. The proof. Bush has got all the right people pissed at him. Pissed at him in such a way and manner that no more proof is needed that he is in fact addressing root causes. Brilliantly. Stubbornly. And as an aside, if you think Iraq is a clusterfuck, you have no idea of what war is. From that tyranny to today--brilliant.

Tom Grey--a man of the world. Justin--another typical, pretentious Ugly American.

Posted by: Ito at June 9, 2006 12:26 PM

p.s. No need to suck or lick. I'll get mine elsewhere. Thank you.

Posted by: ito at June 9, 2006 12:47 PM

[Wow, thanks Ito -- and I don't even know you!]

"the United States doesn't give a rat fuck about anyone but itself." -- I'm sure you're speaking for yourself here Justin, but using the kind of potty mouth language that so many Leftists do*.
I know, adolescents talk in F* speech to appear to be grown up.

And Leftists "hated" what the USA was doing to Vietnam -- but didn't care at all what the N. Vietnamese did when they violated the Paris Treaty they signed (and got a Nobel for, with Henry the K.). I'm sure you'll be telling me how your friends are SOOO concerned about the Vietnamese people after 1974?
Or is it the Rwanda people after 1994? I think a good argument can be made that those people who voted for Clinton in 1996, after his "no genocide" policy, really did have the kind of feelings you mention. Of course, the Reps probably didn't care much, either -- nation building is SOOO expensive.

But objectively, in the last 100 years or last 10, no nation on earth has sent more of its men to die in other countries for "more freedom, more democracy." You hate that Americans are human? Unreal Perfection isn't an option ... tell me how the UN or Russia or China or India or the EU or Latin America or Japan is better.

(*and even my favorite blogger does, more often than I like. But seldom enough that a claim of "for REAL emphasis" seems true, unlike most Leftists.)

Posted by: Tom Grey - Libertay Dad at June 9, 2006 03:25 PM

another enemy of humanity eliminated . this will be example for the rest. you can run but you can not hide. god bless america, god bless kurdistan

Posted by: zagros at June 10, 2006 03:12 PM

When they got Pablo Emilio Escobar did it mean the end to America's coke addiction?

Death to America and hopefully some revenge to some 20,000 deaths of Iraqi civilians in the last 4 years.

Posted by: johnny canuck at June 11, 2006 07:58 AM

Johnny Canuck is banned.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten at June 11, 2006 11:32 AM

yeah so the death of one evil cunt has really made lots of progress in Iraq eh?....... really?

Yeah right... :(

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