January 14, 2008

Hold Music

While I’m working on long dispatches from the Middle East, and before they are ready to publish, what kind of "hold music" do you prefer in the meantime?


What kind of "hold music" do you want?
Excerpts from and links to articles written by me in other publications (such as Commentary Magazine)
Excerpts from and links to interesting articles on the same topic written by other people
Excerpts from and links to interesting articles on non-related international topics written by other people
Excerpts from and links to interesting articles about domestic (American) topics written by other people
"B-side" photographs I've taken in Iraq (and other places) that won't be published in dispatches
Random personal crap
All of the above
Other (Please specify in the comments)
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com
Posted by Michael J. Totten at January 14, 2008 1:00 AM
Comments

It's traditional to play "Girl from Ipanema" if this is an elevator...

Posted by: Patrick S Lasswell Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 10:09 AM

•Excerpts from and links to articles written by me in other publications (such as Commentary Magazine)

•Excerpts from and links to interesting articles on the same topic written by other people

•Excerpts from and links to interesting articles on non-related international topics written by other people

•“B-side” photographs I've taken in Iraq (and other places) that won't be published in dispatches
-----

All of the above are good. I would appreciate it if the site stayed light on domestic political content, we're all going to get as much of that as we can stand between now and November. In any case, it's going to creep in as context/background in the comments as we try to decide which candidate has to best approach to the ME, which will be more than enough for me.

Posted by: rosignol Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 10:17 AM

Rosignol: I would appreciate it if the site stayed light on domestic political content

So far, everyone seems to agree. That's good. It liberates me from having to write about it. I hate partisan domestic politics, which is why I hardly ever touch the subject anymore. So that works for me.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 11:03 AM

Pictures of mujeres from Lebanon. That's always enjoyable regardless.

Posted by: Mike_Nargizian Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 11:44 AM

Interesting factoids of the MiddleEast. For example, when you mentioned that Iraqis don't drink coffee, it generated weeks of commenting.

Posted by: Kevin China Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 3:41 PM

Hey Michael, this has nothing to do with your current post. I'm just curious whether you are ever going to Afghanistan? I'm a Canadian reader who's also in the CF so if I could read what's really going on there and see pictures, that would be great!

[It particularly... troubled me when you noted that the Americans are winning in Iraq but not in Afghanistan. So I'd love to see more on this topic.]

Posted by: Melissa Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 4:14 PM

Melissa,

Most likely I will go to Afghanistan in early 2008.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 4:25 PM

A list of observations about daily Iraqi life that Americans would find odd

Posted by: Saint in Exile Author Profile Page at January 14, 2008 5:40 PM

That's awesome! Thanks! I look forward to future posts.

Posted by: Melissa Author Profile Page at January 15, 2008 12:11 AM

I have been looking for sources of information that I can trust. I have come to trust your reporting on the Middle East.

I would like you to choose "all of the above" items that, from your perspective, can help increase my understanding and knowledge of the area.

This would include information on state-side politics. What happens here effects what happens in Iraq.

I am looking forward to your posts.

Regards,

Steamboat Jack

Posted by: Steamboat Jack Author Profile Page at January 15, 2008 8:26 AM

It's gotta be funkay!! -Lou Donaldson

Posted by: AbuNudnik Author Profile Page at January 15, 2008 10:05 AM

Well, I enjoyed the poll you took last week regarding who we'd choose if the election came down to the Iowa caucus winners. And my vote in November will be predicated on our candidates’ views on the ME.

So, chalk one up in favor of domestic-topic hold-music too, please!

Posted by: scottmoshen Author Profile Page at January 15, 2008 10:31 AM

I love the stuff you have written about the Kurds. Having never spent any time in Kurdish areas, I'd be interested on more insights there.

I have known many Kurds and liked them, had some great political debates. Try getting a Kurd going on Yasser Arafat. The results can be spectacular.

Posted by: Marc Author Profile Page at January 15, 2008 12:18 PM

All of the above, but especially factoids and interesting differences or unexpected things.

Tea, not coffee was great. The high fences, too.

With links to other writers, what you think is a highlight or an important idea.

Recently I was thinking -- all Muslim leaders in Iraq will be "pro-life". Does abortion come up in your Iraq/ ME conversations?

Posted by: Tom Grey - Liberty Dad Author Profile Page at January 16, 2008 6:50 PM

Tom: Does abortion come up in your Iraq/ ME conversations?

Only in Israel and Lebanon.

Posted by: Michael J. Totten Author Profile Page at January 16, 2008 7:49 PM

Tom,

It would not be true to say that all Muslim leaders in Iraq will be "pro life" in an American sense.

Abortion is allowed by many scholars historically, although the trend as of late has been more conservative. The rulings that okay abortion usually state that it must be done within 40 days of conception, some other rulings also state 120. Since the issue is not dealt with directly in Shari'a or The Qur'an there can and are differing opinions on the subject. The closest thing in The Qur'an on the issue is a prohibition on killing infants "because of want".

If done within the first 40 days most Muslims would not consider abortion "haram" (meaning forbidden) but they would most certainly consider it "makrooh" (meaning extremely undesireable).

Posted by: Marc Author Profile Page at January 18, 2008 6:37 AM

I wish the poll gave me the ability to multiselect:

Excerpts from and links to articles written by me in other publications (such as Commentary Magazine)

Excerpts from and links to interesting articles on the same topic written by other people

“B-side” photographs I've taken in Iraq (and other places) that won't be published in dispatches

Posted by: Mark Sicignano Author Profile Page at January 19, 2008 6:23 PM

How about some real music??

Posted by: TeachESL Author Profile Page at January 23, 2008 6:17 AM

I like music, it help me to release stress after all day working.

Posted by: Mike Price Author Profile Page at May 13, 2008 7:15 AM
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