Nelson Report Says Freeman Foes Distorting China Memo

It’s quite clear that a major battle has erupted over the appointment of Chas Freeman as chairman of the National Intelligence Council (NIC), which, among other things, is charged with putting together the consensus judgments, called National Intelligence Estimates (NIEs) on key issues of the 16 agencies that make up the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC). Today, in what was described as upping the ante, the seven Republican members of the Senate Intelligence Committee expressed their “surprise” at the appointment in a letter to the man who appointed Freeman, Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Adm. Dennis Blair, and threatening to “devote even more oversight scrutiny to the activities of the NIC under (Freeman’s) leadership.” (The wording — and the fact that the seven didn’t mention the alleged conflict of interest regarding Freeman’s ties to Saudi Arabia, but only his “highly controversial statements about China and Israel” — suggested to me that they believe that Blair has no intention of seeking Freeman’s withdrawal, which is perhaps an overly hopeful interpretation on my part.)

In any event, as readers of this blog know, I am a big fan of Chris Nelson, who puts out the highly regarded insider newsletter, The Nelson Report. Well, Monday’s edition of the Report reports that Freeman’s controversial statement about the repression of the pro-democracy movement in Beijing in 1989 — which was apparently leaked to Freeman’s critics from a subscriber to a private listserv — has been taken completely out of context. Here is what Nelson wrote this evening:

“Unscrupulous opponents have given sections of the memo to gullible commentators with the lie…no other word for it…that it is Freeman talking for himself, with his personal views and analysis of Chinese government actions in 1989.”

Read the rest of Jim’s post and comment on his blog.

Enlisting Homeschoolers

It is disheartening to see that the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is promoting service in the Army National Guard. According to a recent Home School Heartbeat:

More than ever, homeschool graduates are finding that their education has prepared them for open doors in many fields of opportunity. Today on Home School Heartbeat, HSLDA President Mike Smith and Army National Guard recruiter, Chaplain Paul Douglas, explore a door that recently opened a little wider for homeschool graduates.

Mike Smith:
Chaplain Douglas, the Army National Guard adopted a streamlined enlistment policy for homeschoolers this past year. Please tell our listeners about that.

Chaplain Paul Douglas:
Sure thing, Mr. Smith. The Homeschool Path to Honor is a new approach to bringing homeschool enlistees into the Army National Guard. Colonel Mike Jones, a homeschool dad himself, recognized very early on that the process was confusing to a lot of our recruiters. And a lot of times, homeschool families were being penalized—inadvertently—for being homeschoolers. So we looked at the policy. We looked at the way that it was constructed. We came up with a better way of organizing it. So if you go to the website, you can see the Army National Guard Homeschool Path to Honor—really very simply, walks you through the whole process, tells you what the requirements are, helps families get their young people into the Army National Guard, if they so desire. Chaplain Tim Baer, who will be taking my place at the helm of the recruiting effort, he’s the director of that program now. He’s a good man. And we all want homeschoolers to succeed.

Well, Chaplain Douglas, thanks for working to make these policy changes happen! We appreciate your service. And until next time, I’m Mike Smith.

I will never understand why parents who would never allow their children to set foot in a public school would encourage, or at least not discourage, their children to join the U.S. military and not only face government propaganda and immorality on a much greater scale than exists in the public schools, but participate in bringing death and destruction to the latest “enemy” of the U.S. empire.

Is The Baghdad Mosquito Classified?

When I blogged and posted a copy of The Baghdad Mosquito yesterday I had no idea I was spreading classified material.

The Baghdad Mosquito is a daily newsletter produced under the auspices of the Multi-National Forces in Iraq. It is distributed via e-mail to an elite group of military officers and policy planners and is posted on the military’s classified Web server.

The March 5 edition contains a reprint of Scott Horton’s article from, “Finding Ways to Stay in Iraq.” (It is reprinted without the copyright note and The Baghdad Mosquito was not given reprint permission). It was run to show that an Iraq newspaper, Al Nour, had reprinted it in full, to the surprise of the editors of The Mosquito. The Mosquito editors commented:

Summary: A US Political analyst believes that the policies of the Bush administration are being repeated in Iraq; however, the administration is trying to ‘beautify’ the policies in an attempt to fool the world. The analyst claims that Obama is ‘playing with slogans’.

[Mosquito Note: The rest of the article was taken from another website and translated into Arabic. The author at Al Nour removed the names (other than Scott Horton) from the original article. The rest of the content remained the same. The following is the text of the article written by Mr. Scott Horton that was published on It is unusual for Al Nour to publish this type of article. The article is written from a very left-wing liberal point of view. Al Nour is usually a non-biased newspaper that publishes news stories rather than extremely biased editorials.]

The staff at The Baghdad Mosquito have become aware of the fact that we obtained a copy of their publication. They have made the following “request”:

Please delete the copy of the product that you have, and I would appreciate if you would ask Mr. Horton to do the same. Additionally, please do not distribute the product further.

The email is signed: V/R, Baghdad Mosquito Staff.

Since this is only a request, and not an order from any governmental body, we have no intention of removing the post at this time (but you might want to grab a copy of the pdf, just in case…)

The Baghdad Mosquito has been published daily since late 2003. I was unable to find another copy anywhere on the web via a Google search, although copies are clearly distributed to non-military people like Daniel Pipes.

Ron Paul vs. James Baker on Revised War Powers Act

Note the presence of the brilliant Daniel McAdams backing up Dr. Paul and the ungentlemanly belligerence of Baker.

Note also that Baker’s argument rests on the premise that the constitution is dead and that without the War Powers Act, or his new replacement for it, there would be no restriction on presidential war making whatsoever – Article 1, Section 8, Clause 11 of the Constitution, among others, notwithstanding.

Paul is right, as usual. The War Powers Act – which “allows” the president to start wars for 60 days before Congress can assemble to swing their rubber stamp and “support the troops” – should be repealed and replaced with nothing but the perpetual threat of impeachment.

Baker’s plan is no substitute for an actual rule of law. (Ha.)

(Cross-posted at Stress.)