Current Events and the Psychology of Politics

Featured Posts        





Archive for March, 2009

Summary: Baitullah Mehsud, commander of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility for a deadly assault on a Pakistani police academy and said the group was planning a terrorist attack on the White House that would “amaze” the world.

Mar 30th, 2009

Summary: Pentagon spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and to fight terrorism elsewhere has reached $685.7 billion since 2001, according to a U.S. government watchdog agency. The Government Accountability Office, or GAO, said the Iraq war accounted for $533.5 billion in Defense Department spending obligations through December 2008, while spending on operations in Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa, and the Philippines totaled $124.1 billion. The remaining $28.1 billion was for operations to defend the U.S. mainland, the GAO said in a letter to Congress dated March 30, 2009.

Mar 29th, 2009

Summary: Iraqi authorities arrested the local leader of a Sunni “Awakening Council” group that had broken with al-Qaida, Adil al-Mashhadani, sparking a two-day gunbattle in central Baghdad that killed four people and wounded 21.

Summary: Compilation of reports regarding U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann’s conspiracy theory that the United States will soon be moving to “give up the dollar as our currency and we would just go with a One World currency,” which would mean the U.S. as a country would be “no more.” (Bachmann grabbed the mythical ball and ran with it after China’s central bank governor suggested replacing the weakening dollar as the world’s reserve currency.)

Summary: Calling the situation in the region “increasingly perilous,” President Barack Obama ordered 4,000 more military troops into Afghanistan, vowing to “disrupt, dismantle, and defeat” the terrorist al-Qaida network in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan.

Mar 26th, 2009

Summary: The military is racing to inspect more than 90,000 U.S.-run facilities across Iraq to reduce a deadly threat troops face far off the battlefield: electrocution or shock while showering or using appliances.

Mar 25th, 2009

Summary: Baghdad has been much calmer since sectarian violence peaked in late 2006 and the first half of 2007. However, the calm has been achieved in part because the city is now ethnically divided, with Shiites predominating and Sunnis having largely fled.

Mar 24th, 2009

Summary: On Saturday afternoon, March 21, 2009 Rep. Michele Bachmann said on WWTC 1280 AM radio that she wants people in Minnesota “armed and dangerous” on the issue of an energy tax, “because we need to fight back” and “having a revolution every now and then is a good thing.” Eric Ostermeier reported Bachmann’s remarks on “Smart Politics,” the blog of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance at the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, where it was picked up by other media outlets.

Mar 23rd, 2009

Summary: The al-Qaida-linked terror network, Jaish-e-Mohammed, runs schools for jihadi fighters in the heart of Pakistan, hundreds of miles from the Afghan border, amid reports that insurgent commanders and suicide bombers in the AfPak border region are increasingly coming from Punjab. … A suicide bomber struck a tent filled with Kurdish funeral mourners, unleashing a huge fireball that killed 25 people in the northern Iraq town of Jalawla, where Kurds and Arabs are competing for power.

Mar 22nd, 2009

Summary: According to NBC News chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel, there have been five different wars in Iraq, with the sixth war under way — America’s exit strategy. The first five war phases were Shock and Awe (March-April 2003), Nation-Building (2003-2004), Insurgency (2004-2005), Civil War (2006-2007), and The Surge (2007-2008).