Streetwise Professor

February 26, 2012

Getting Clear Yet?

Filed under: Military,Politics — The Professor @ 3:49 pm

See how quickly it takes you to call bull on this story (h/t R):

Two United States advisers who were shot dead in Afghanistan’s interior ministry by an Afghan colleague had been mocking anti-US protests over the burning of the Koran, a government source said.

. . . .

Describing the sequence of events that led to the interior ministry shootings, the source said the US advisers were “scolding the protesters and calling them bad names” as they watched videos of protests in Kabul.

“They called the Koran a bad book in the presence of (an Afghan colleague). After all this the guy had verbal arguments with the advisers and was threatened by them. He gets angry and shoots them. Eight rounds were fired at them,” the source added, requesting anonymity.

“He then sneaks out and disappears. No-one knew about the incident for more than an hour because the room is soundproofed,” he said, adding that CCTV cameras had been viewed in the investigation of the shooting.

The source apparently knows what went on in a soundproof room from which shots were not heard.  Look at the odd formulation at the end of the story.  He “adds” that CCTV cameras had been viewed.  But he does not say explicitly, in his earlier description, that what he described was on the CCTV tapes.  He leaves the implication.

I will believe it when-if-these tapes are made public.

Another reason to call bull: why was the driver of an officer who was not present in a secured, soundproof room with 2 US officers? It might have made sense-might-if the officer himself were in the room. Or if the officer had left, momentarily-not for an hour.  But his driver there alone? And would an O-4 and O-5 with obviously very sensitive jobs, who were detailed to work with Afghans and hence almost certain to be careful of what they said about them, be spouting off in front of a driver, for crissakes, given the circumstances then prevailing in Kabul then?

This story is apparently illustrating Mark Twain’s adage that a lie gets around the world while the truth is getting its boots on.

The fact that some Afghan source would be peddling such a story does not surprise me in the least.  It also does not surprise me in the least that he is peddling it primarily through foreign sources.  It further does not surprise me that journalists are credulously repeating the story despite the fact that it is farcical on its face.  The key to getting a lie believed is that the target wants to believe it.

And I wonder. Who is standing up for the two US officers who cannot defend themselves? Why is the US military seemingly way behind the Afghan agitprop OODA loop here?

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  1. I wouldn’t be too surprised if it was true. The US military are hardly Islamophiles.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 26, 2012 @ 4:38 pm

  2. Of course, you wouldn’t S/O. Nobody expects you to.

    Comment by voroBey — February 26, 2012 @ 5:02 pm

  3. Like you effing know anything, S/O. Yeah. You, the expert on US military people. How many do you know, exactly? And in particular, how many field grade officers assigned to work with Afghan/Muslims do you know? Do you know how PC the military is, in fact? Do you know that *especially* for people who are going to be assigned to work alongside Afghans that they the military is highly unlikely to pick Islamaphobes?

    More: do you really think it is plausible that 2 field grade officers would just go off on an anti-Koran rant to a fricking driver? When there are riots going on, protesting American treatment of the Koran? And just why was that “driver” there alone with them?

    Get a grip.

    Interesting too, how you assign homogeneous views to 1.5 million military personnel (active duty-won’t mention the 800K reservists). Do you make similar broad judgments about other groups? (Other than “neoliberals”-I’m familiar with your views on them.)

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 26, 2012 @ 5:04 pm

  4. Re: the OODA loop – I am sure that Washington is trying to figure out what to do, and the administration will respond with the same forceful and timely leadership they have given to say, the budget process, the stimulus, etc. The press is being itself – promoting conflict and turmoil to get ratings. Their reaction to any anti American story is so reflexive that we can’t even call them stooges anymore: a stooge after all is mislead, while the press doesn’t even bother to think at all.

    Comment by sotos — February 26, 2012 @ 5:29 pm

  5. From just the past month or so I’ve read the stories of them pissing on Taliban corpses and posing in front of SS flags. Going on an anti-Islam rant is small beans in comparison.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 26, 2012 @ 7:03 pm

  6. I’m also not sure why you’re so hostile.

    I am not even making any moral judgments here. It is rare for occupying soldiers to like populaces that hate and despise them. What is so wrong with pointing it out?

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 26, 2012 @ 7:10 pm

  7. @S/O-Go ahead, show your ass re the SS flags. Really. God you are beyond ignorant at times. The “SS” means “Scout Sniper”. You really think that’s a Nazi allusion?

    Again-how many Marines do you know?

    Oh. And BTW-15 seconds research will tell you about the affinity between many Muslims (e.g., the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, the SS Handzar Division in the Balkans) and the Nazis. So it is beyond stupid for you to conclude that even if the Marine sniper flag were some sort of Nazi reference that it would imply Islamophobia. (Hint: the affinity has something to do with Jews.)

    Re the corpses-you think that’s an anti-Islamic thing? Really? No. It’s an anti-enemy thing. War is corrosive. Believe me-pissing on one’s dead enemies is nothing.

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 26, 2012 @ 7:11 pm

  8. Except that the flag in the picture…

    Is the exact same as the (explicitly labeled Nazi SS flag) sold by a Nazi memorabilia site:

    “7180. ss double runic flag, a favorite and well know ss flag, 3′ x 5′ $7.50”

    Again-how many Marines do you know?

    Two. Former Marines, anyway.

    Don’t see what it has to do with anything. They are both from ethnic minorities (one is Filipino, one is black) so I doubt they’d be caught posing in front of an SS-we-really-mean-Sniper-Scout flag.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 26, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

  9. S/O. It has everything to do with it. If you knew Marines you would know that flag isn’t Nazi-wink-wink.

    Look. I couldn’t be a Marine in a million years, but I respect the hell out of them. The guys I knew at Navy who went Marine were very different than me. The Marine officers who were company officers, etc., at Navy were from another planet. But I have huge respect for every one of them, and what I know is that Naziism and Naziphilia are not the Marine Corps way. At all.

    In fact, the Marines would disdain doing something that would even suggest that there was a military force might possibly be superior to them. The Marines pay homage to one military force, one military tradition, and one only: The United States Marine Corps. It’s actually kind of annoying. But it’s the way they are. If you think Marines are Nazi wannabes-that says a lot. Marines think everybody else are Marine wannabes.

    And among Marines, Scout Snipers and Force Recon types are the most squared away of the squared away.

    If you had a clue you would crawl under a rock from shame.

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 26, 2012 @ 7:53 pm

  10. Where did I say “the Marines” are Nazi wannabes?

    We’re talking about subgroups, but which may be reflective of more common (if moderated) attitudes. Attitudes which the murdered officers may have feasibly shared or at least sympathized with.

    Why is that so difficult to believe?

    And you still haven’t address the main point: The only place where you can buy a flag like the one used in the Marines photo is from a Nazi memorabilia site.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 26, 2012 @ 8:00 pm

  11. Here’s where you said it: “SS-we-really-mean-Sniper-Scout flag”. Don’t be a weasel.

    And cut the sociology crap with me. Please. That crap goes over in Berkeley. Real world, not so much. And hell, it doesn’t go over even in academia, except in sociology departments-which are the least respected department in most universities, and are typically the department most likely to be axed wholesale (e.g., Washington University).

    Main point? You believe that the Marines can only buy retail? God you are hopeless.

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 26, 2012 @ 8:09 pm

  12. And you are willing to go to the most ridiculous suspensions of logic (not to mention slobbering personal attacks) to avoid the smallest besmirching of the Marines’ reputation.

    I for one consider it a lot more likely that they bought it retail as opposed to manufacturing or custom ordering a flag that is identical to the ones used by the SS down to the exact colors and runic font.

    PS. FYI, I’ve never even taken a single sociology class.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 26, 2012 @ 8:23 pm

  13. The sublim Berkley boy feel he have the upper hand .Shithous Putins propagandist nice try .

    Putin´s “shithouse” programme a total failure
    Vladimir Kara-Murza writes about Putin´s failed anti-terrorist programme in the World Affairs Journal:

    Another year, another terrorist attack in Russia. On January 24, a suspected suicide bomber detonated an explosive device in the arrivals zone at Domodedovo, Moscow’s busiest airport. Thirty-five people were killed and more than a hundred were injured. As Vladimir Putin prepares for this year’s parliamentary “elections” and a possible return to the Kremlin in 2012, his “pacification” of the North Caucasus has once again been proven a failure. Not that more proof was needed after last year’s attack on Lubyanka metro station – literally under the nose of the FSB, Russia’s Federal Security Service.

    A decade ago, the Kremlin rejected a political track in favor of the “shithouse” strategy. Chechen leader Aslan Maskhadov, whom Mr. Putin himself called “the lawfully elected president, whether we like it or not,” was branded a “terrorist” and killed. Any reference to him or his associates still stirs the Kremlin’s wrath, as was shown last week by the Russian Foreign Ministry’s protest over an event in Washington featuring Ilyas Akhmadov, Mr. Maskhadov’s former foreign minister. What had been a classic separatist movement in Chechnya was hijacked by Islamist fundamentalists and spread out to neighboring Ingushetia and Dagestan. For this transformation, Mr. Putin’s heavy-handed and cynical approach to the Caucasus bears a direct responsibility.

    Read the entire article here.’s-caucasus-failure

    Comment by Anders — February 26, 2012 @ 8:27 pm

  14. Funny how SO has brought the “SS flag” story here. Which did not bring much attention in the US but was beaten to death throughout the Russian media last week.

    Comment by LL — February 26, 2012 @ 8:54 pm

  15. S/O. Re sociology-apparently it’s in the water in Berkeley, because that was pitch perfect sociological tripe.

    Suggesting Marines are paying homage to Nazis by “posing in front of an SS flag”–an SS flag–is not a small besmirching. Sorry. Again-stop trying to weasel your way out.

    You know nothing of the Marines. So go ahead. Keep showing your ass.

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 26, 2012 @ 8:59 pm

  16. S/O is a typical Russian, he conveniently ignores the fact that his beloved Russia is home to more than half the nazi population of the planet.

    I remember watching Russian soldiers give the nazi salute as they looted Georgian villages in 2008.

    Along with the raping, torture, and killing of civilians, that shows the Russian army’s love affair with fascism better than anything else.

    Pissing on the enemy’s body, I really don’t see why fag boy S/O is so cut up about it, Russians do a lot worse in Chechnya to civilians remains, and considering what the Taliban do to the bodies of their enemies, well payback is a bitch.

    Comment by Andrew — February 26, 2012 @ 10:31 pm

  17. Folks, we really are feeding the troll here.

    Comment by sotos — February 27, 2012 @ 7:03 am

  18. The SWP Hive has in its usual state of gormless rage, again.

    Good, that means I’ve won the argument. Next.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — February 27, 2012 @ 3:08 pm

  19. @S/O. In your continued delusions, you’re right. Here’s the bio of an obvious Islamophobe. Obvious:

    While assigned to a Provincial Reconstruction Team in 2009, Loftis was said to “have gained so much public praise because he was fluent in Pashto…his ability to engage with the Afghans in their own language and earn their trust was a valuable weapon in the counterinsurgency fight,” in an article by Staff Sgt. David Flaherty, 22nd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment.

    “When the Afghan people see that an American is speaking Pashto, they’re more inclined to open up to him, and that’s the reason why he’s so successful,” said Mohammad Ashraf Nasari, the governor of Zabul province, Afghanistan. “He can go among the local population and get their impression of U.S. forces. He can do this better than any other soldier because he speaks their language and knows their culture.”

    Take my advice. Crawl under a rock. If you had a shred of common sense you would take it. But you persist in embarrassing yourself. Far be it from me to stop you.

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 27, 2012 @ 5:22 pm

  20. S/O. The other victim, the major, was a gym teacher before joining the NG full time. Another obvious candidate for raging Islamophobia.

    Got your rock picked out yet?

    The ProfessorComment by The Professor — February 27, 2012 @ 5:32 pm

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