Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 15, 2008

Pentagon Still Uses My 'Make Your Own' Schema

Back in 2005 I came up with this "Make Your Own" schema to generate reports about U.S. successes against 'Al-Qaeda in Iraq'.

[top | important | most wanted | close | key]  al-Zarqawi  [aide | lieutenant | associate | "cell prince" | figure]  [captured | arrested]

(some date)  (some place in Iraq)

[Iraqi | US | US and Iraqi]  forces have  [nabbed | captured | arrested]  [a | one | two] [senior | middle]  [figure | operations chief | terrorist operative]  of  [Jordanian | al-Qaeda-linked | Iraq's most wanted]  terrorist Abu Musab Zarqawi.

(arabic name), also know as (other arabic name), was  [detained | picked up]  on (some date) during an  [Iraqi police | US military | US and Iraqi]  [raid | road block | operation]  in  (some place in Iraq).

[spokesman | US General | Iraqi minister]  said  ["major catch" | "significant impact" | "big step forward"].

The old post included some 20 real life examples of its use. The schema was out of fashion for a while but today it is BACK!!!

American troops acting on a tip killed the No. 2 leader of al-Qaida in Iraq — a Moroccan known for his ability to recruit and motivate foreign fighters — in a raid in the northern city of Mosul, the U.S. military said Wednesday.
U.S. troops killed Abu Qaswarah, also known as Abu Sara, on Oct. 5 after coming under fire during a raid on a building that served as an al-Qaida in Iraq "key command and control location for" in Mosul, the military said.
The insurgent leader became the senior al-Qaida in Iraq emir of northern Iraq in June 2007 and had "historic ties to AQI founder Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and senior al-Qaida leaders in Afghanistan and Pakistan," the military said.
US troops kill No. 2 leader of al-Qaida in Iraq, Oct 15, 2008

Checking the above I should have made a special provisions for 'al-Qaeda's No.2'. That guy seems to be an attractive and regular subject of schema generated success-news. Consider:

The Iraqi Interior Ministry said Abdullah Latif Al Jaburi was arrested in a raid by U.S.-led coalition forces in Duluiya, 90 kilometers north of Baghdad on March 4. Al Jaburi was identified as the No. 2 operative in the Al Qaida-affiliated Islamic State in Iraq.
U.S. captures Iraq's number 2 Al Qaida leader, March 6, 2007


Iraq's national security adviser, Mowaffak al-Rubaie, said Hamed Juma Faris al-Suaidi, al-Qaida's number two commander in the country, told reporters today that he had been arrested last week.
Iraq's al-Qaida number two arrested, Sept 3, 2006


Iraqi and U.S. forces claimed a major blow against one of the country's deadliest insurgent groups Tuesday, saying they killed the No. 2 leader of al-Qaida in Iraq who masterminded a brutal escalation in suicide bombings that claimed nearly 700 lives in Baghdad since April.
Number Two Leader of al-Qaida Killed in Iraq, Sept 30, 2005

I guess McCain will tonight use today's "Make Your Own" generated Pentagon news to make some weird argument about staying in Iraq.

That is likely the reason why this was put out in the first place.

Posted by b on October 15, 2008 at 15:31 UTC | Permalink


you have the best political blog on the US; I'm shocked that you don't live here. keep up the good work.

Posted by: Juan | Oct 15 2008 17:16 utc | 1

you have the best political blog on the US

Thanks Juan - that is a bit exaggerated but nice to hear.

Posted by: b | Oct 15 2008 17:56 utc | 2

Minitrue keeps cranking 'em out.

I s'pose the #2 spot has pretty high turnover. They wouldn't report "[Arabic name aka Arabic name], formerly #4 AQ leader recently promoted to #3 and then #2, [captured/arrested/killed] by [US/Coalition/Iraqi] forces," would they?

Posted by: catlady | Oct 15 2008 18:26 utc | 3

For At Least The Third Time, usa military Take Down A 'No. 2' Leader Of Al Qaeda In Iraq

The Pentagon announced that amerikan Occupation & Oil Stealing troops had killed Abu Qaswarah, the No. 2 leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, in a raid in Mosul. usa military officials hailed the death of Qaswarah, also known as Abu Sara, as "a major disruption to the terror network, particularly in northern Iraq,".

However, this is at least the third time that usa officials have announced the capture / killing of a "No. 2" leader of al Qaeda in Iraq in the past few years. On each occasion — including when they killed the No. 1 leader — they similarly hailed it as a major victory.

Posted by: no - go on !! | Oct 15 2008 18:29 utc | 4

Al Q leaders are thick on the ground from a US pov.

For ex: for the murder of Danny Pearl, was accused some unknown (to the US media) person, in fact an Algerian, that is long ways back, sorry no links, but they were on the right track there;

- then Omar Saheed Sheik, (according to some works for MI6) who was convicted under US pressure by the Pakistani courts for that killing, now in jail in a comfortable position with his death sentence suspended, appeals pending.

The latest accused of the murder is Khalid Sheik Mohammed, he confessed to cutting off Danny’s head, as well as offering other extravagant true confessions.

In some situations the accused need to claim many crimes to save their skin. (imho.)

Khalid is blowing smoke: but if his confession is accepted so should not Omar be released?

A partial transcript, summary (pdf) of the KSM trial at Gitmo can be read here, long, not reco. for the bored skimmer, or non enthusiasts, lists some way through what KSM is confessing to:>defenselink

Catching all these AlQ leaders is a purely media propaganda for the US sheeples. Triumphs and scares mixed in with Britney nude, all of it TV show... They don’t care who killed Danny, don’t even remember him.

His wife, Mariane, wrote a book, A mighty heart.>amazon

the film version, with Angelina Jolie as Mariane Pearl,>link

RIP Daniel.

Posted by: Tangerine | Oct 15 2008 18:35 utc | 5

Look for the "money line" below...the "Defense" Golum
is creating the next front in the War For Your Wallet.


Afghan Leader Assassinated

By Tom Blackwell
National Post

Another senior government official was shot dead in Kandahar city yesterday, fueling a new climate of fear in the troubled area as Taliban assassins increasingly target Afghans linked to the government and foreign organizations.

The murder of Dost Mohammad Arghestani, head of a department that aids widows and other victims of war, came barely two weeks after the almost identical daylight slaying of Kandahar's top female police officer.

The city's war-weary residents figure the victims of bomb blasts are simply unlucky, winding up in the wrong place at the wrong time, said a security expert with an international agency. This is different, he said.

"Assassination cases are having more negative impact than any IED
attack," said the official, who asked not to be named. "People are
really worried ... If targeted killings start, it puts everyone to thinking 'I might be next.' Morale is getting worse"

One local businessman said foreign nations such as Canada - the NATO country responsible for Kandahar province - need to do more to prepare police for combating such dangers.

Mr. Arghestani was leaving for work in his car when two men on a motorcycle opened fire, killing him and his driver and wounding his bodyguard, said Zalmai Ayobi, a spokesman for the provincial governor. Malalai Kakar, the country's most famous policewoman, was murdered in much the same manner on Sept. 28.

As occurred with the death of Ms. Kakar, the Taliban claimed responsibility yesterday for Mr. Arghestani's killing.

"We did this action and we will carry on with more assassination attempts
against officials, against those who work with foreign institutions," said
Yousuf Ahmadi, the insurgents' self-described spokesman. "They are the

Gen. Denis Thompson, who heads the Canadian military mission in Kandahar, and Elissa Golberg, Canada's civilian representative in the province, issued a rare joint statement condemning the attack.

"This reprehensible act clearly demonstrates the insurgents' contempt for the people of Afghanistan," they said. "The brave citizens of
Kandahar province will not be shaken by these futile attempts to undermine the progress (sic) being made toward peace, security and development."

[Ed. - If there's anything more contemptible than CA:UN security forces responsible for AF lives dismissing assassinations with a bogus claim that there is real progress in ensuring security, is not only a non sequitor, an hyperbole, but crass and blatantly dismissive 'kaffirism' by the colonial elitists, ... and that isn't lost on the 'natives', and the Taliban counterinsurgents.]

But some locals see the new campaign as anything but futile on the part of the Taliban, saying it is beginning to breed panic. Mohammad Naseem, a local businessman, called it a calculated attempt to rid Kandahar city of its educated class, leaving behind residents who can be more easily swayed or frightened.

"It not only creates fear within the community, it also brain drains the
area, and that's what the enemy wants," he said in an interview.
"They are scaring those people away and those are the kinds of people the
community needs."

And while the killings of high-profile figures like Mr. Arghestani and Ms.
Kakar make headlines, lower-level officials, teachers and interpreters are
assassinated and go unreported "every single day," said Mr. Mohammad.

Canada does have a team of RCMP officers that helps train and mentor Afghan National Police. But the businessman said NATO should do much more to teach and equip police officers and boost their meager salaries, so they are better able to repel the insurgent threat.

In the meantime, many Kandaharis are asking a tough question, said the security expert: "If the head of a department in a vehicle with a body guard cannot be protected, how can they protect an interpreter or other worker at a lower level?"


"Collectively, we call these groups (and others) "Taliban," but that blanket term is not completely accurate. The Afghanistan/Pakistan insurgency is a complex, distributed and hydra-headed network of different people fighting for different reasons. Sometimes they work together, sometimes they don't. If they "succeed" in kicking us out of Afghanistan, they will probably end up fighting each other.

Some of the people we call Taliban are Al Qaeda-affiliated terrorists. Others are local insurgents fighting for revenge, self-respect, or because they're simple, ornery mountain folk who have traded in their spears and torches for AKs and RPGs. Iraq is a few decades behind the west; Afghanistan is practically on a different planet."


Afghanistan, Pakistan: The Battlespace of the Border"

Posted by: Shah Loam | Oct 15 2008 19:53 utc | 6

William Pfaff has a new essay about the National Defense Strategy document issued in June - he speculates it was published because SecDef Gates was/is angling to stay on in the new regime. He goes into detail, but briefly:

"The noteworthy thing about this National Defense Strategy statement is that it says nothing directly about American national defense. It is a strategy for intervening in other countries, and preventing others from blocking or resisting American interventions."

Posted by: mistah charley, ph.d. | Oct 15 2008 23:35 utc | 7

Surgar Weekly Afghanistan, English Edition

NATO airstrike kills 25 civilians

IHT, Kabul

A NATO airstrike on a village near the embattled provincial capital of Lashkar Gah killed 25 to 30 civilians, according to Afghan officials in the area.

While NATO confirmed that an airstrike had taken place Thursday in the area, where Taliban fighters have been battling NATO forces, it said the reports were being investigated and that the command was "unable to confirm any civilian casualties."

Reliable information on the airstrike - whether it caused the deaths, as local officials and residents reported, and whether the number of civilian deaths was accurate - was elusive. But any substantial civilian death toll would further inflame an Afghan government and public already uneasy over a recent rise in civilian casualties from coalition airstrikes. U.S. commanders have acknowledged that the war has been going badly in recent months as the Taliban and Al Qaeda have stepped up their campaign of bombings and assassinations.

Residents claiming to have witnessed the airstrike said at least 18 bodies, all women and children - including one only 6 months old - were pulled from the rubble and taken to the provincial governor's compound in protest.

At nightfall Thursday in Kabul, the NATO command issued a statement confirming only that an airstrike had taken place in the Nadali District, northwest of Lashkar Gah, capital of Helmand Province in the southwest.

On Friday, a NATO spokesman, Captain Mark Windsor, said the force was seeking more information and declined further comment.

Local officials and residents of Nadali said Thursday that a bomb had hit three houses in a village in the Loy Bagh District where seven families were seeking refuge from fighting elsewhere. Mahboob Khan, the district chief, said in a telephone interview that 18 bodies had been retrieved, and that as many as 12 other bodies remained in the rubble. Khan said the bombing had caused widespread anger among the villagers.

"They're busy burying their family members now," he said. "But tomorrow, they will demand to know why their houses were targeted."

The BBC reported that one of its journalists had seen 18 bodies, all women and children ranging in age from 6 months to 15 years.

Accounts gathered over the telephone by a reporter for The New York Times in Kandahar, about 135 kilometers, or 85 miles, east of Lashkar Gah, were similar.

Muhammad Akram, a shopkeeper in Lashkar Gah, said by telephone that the bodies had been brought into the city in a minibus. "They were badly mangled, and they included men, women and children," he said.


Protesters support Ahmad Wali Karzai

Kandahar Surgar:

On October the 12th, tens of protesters in Kandahar supported the Afghan president's brother and Kandahar provincial head Ahmad Wali Karzai
with different slogans in hand. Not all of these slogans were supportive in nature for Ahmad Wali Karzai, but some were against the foreign press.
Protesters carried Ahmad Wali's photos while accusing a leading newspaper, the New York Times, of setting up political plots within Afghanistan.

In a recent publication, the New York Times charged Ahmad Wali with an alleged involvement in illegal heroin smuggling operations, after national
police uncovered a sealed van filled with heroin, and Karzai allegedly ordered its release. Governmental corruption disclosures like these routinely
appear in the Western press as the norm. Karzai rejected the Times allegations against him, saying it was a plot set up by the political opposition.

According to a female protester, Zainab, foreigners first lobby for certain Afghan leaders to secure major governmental positions, but then after they
are humiliated in office, the foreign press agitates for their removal from the job. Zainab considered this foreign press agitation as one of the reasons
that Afghan leaders are being assassinated, and asked to have their reporters excluded from the country.

"Let Afghans rebuild their country and stop interfering in the country's interior affairs," Zainab asked. If foreigners don't avoid humiliating Afghan leaders,
Zainab cautioned, the foreigners will lose Afghan support.

Protesters asked the United Nations to drag those into court who try to disgrace Afghan leaders. The UNAMA was asked to help them forward their
demands to the main office of United Nations, so they can be taken into serious consideration, however this conflicts with Western free speech rights.


National secret police capture militants

Kandahar Surgar:

Kandahar secret police report capture of three armed men suspected of carrying out terrorist attacks in Loya Weyala area of Kandahar city, and said
that five weapons were seized in the arrest.

According to General Abdul Qayum Katawzai, the suspects were captured based on intelligence service reports, stating that the men were captured
with an RPG, one shaft PK, and three AK-47, along with their getaway car.

According to the general, the suspected terrorists have confessed their involvement in other terrorist attacks as well, saying that police have documents
proving that these men were extorting governmental officials by calling them and demanding money. He added that other insurrectionists are linked to
these captured suspects, and a search is on for them as well.

Loya Weyala is an important part of Kandahar city, the secret police chief said, in assuring civilians that the police will succeed in stopping terrorist
attacks and plots by bringing better police security to the city.


High official assassinated in Kandahar

Kandahar Surgar:

Kandahar Social Affairs Department head, Dost Mohammad Arghistani, was shot dead in Noorzo Shahbraj, second district of Kandahar city by
unidentified gun men October 14th, Tuesday morning.

Kandahar governor spokesman, Zulmai Ayoubi, told Sugar Weekly that Arghistani was on his way to work when armed men on a motorcycle shot
him along with his driver and bodyguards. The driver was also killed, and the bodyguards were wounded in the attack.

Arghistani had been carrying out his office for the last five years. This is the second recent high official to have been killed by unidentified gun men.
Just three weeks ago, Malalai Joya along with her son were shot dead in the early morning while going to work.

The Taliban have claimed that they have carried out both of the assassinations and will continue to murder officials who cooperate with foreigners.

Kandahar security officials said they have started an investigation on both cases, but haven't arrested any suspects. Newly trained security officials
have been deployed in different areas and check-points in Kandahar to increase security following the attacks.


Five security officials 'found guilty'

Kandahar Surgar:

Five security officials detained by the Kandahar district attorney's office were found guilty of carrying out different crimes by the Southern Military Branch Court.

The Kandahar military prosecution attorney's office claimed these five men were captured after prosecutions had revealed they were involved in certain crimes.

The office's chief told Surgar Weekly that Boldak district soldier Mohammad Rahim had murdered a policeman and was sent to prison for 16 years, an Afghan
national Army soldier was given 11 years with similar charges, Takhta Pul district guardian Lalai was captured with illegal weapons and sent to prison for 11
years, and two other officers of different districts were found guilty of causing accidents and received four years of prison each.

The punishment announced for Mohammad Naeem was accepted by the Supreme Court, but the rest of those sentenced sought to appeal to the higher court.

The local attorney general said these convictions set an example, that any officer who misuses his uniform to perform illegal deeds will be caught and punished
severely. He also urged civilians to disclose the names of those police men, soldiers or their commanders who harass people and misuse their authority in public.

According to General Shenwari, from the day he took over the security position, Kandahar security has tightened and security officials have improved in their duty.
In the last two years, the Kandahar military attorney branch has captured tens of policemen and commanders trying to benefit illegally from their authority.


Coalition forces carry out anti-smuggling operations

Kabul Surgar:

In the ongoing year, joint military operations will take place between NATO, coalition forces and the Afghan national secret police against illegal smugglers,
the Counter-Narcotics ministry said.

NATO has pledged to help the National secret police uncover and eradicate drug stores, capture smugglers, and point out their drug transfer export caravans,
Counter-narcotics minister Khudiadad said.

According to Khudaidad, coalition forces are willing to help Afghan police to bring to an end to drug smuggling, but at the same time, they refuse to help them
clear out opium poppy fields for fear of disrupting village populations.

While the Afghan National police will be securing poppy eradication campaigns in their regions, the national secret police, on the other hand will be actively\
destroying poppy crops, the counter narcotics ministry claimed.

This year difficult military campaigns against poppy growing will be undertaken, especially in southern provinces of the country where poppy growth is at its
highest level, Khudaidad added. The minister claimed the International aid society is willing to assist those afghan farmers who can avoid growing poppy.

The counter narcotics ministry states it will do whatever is in their power to eradicate poppy growth, but have steadfastly refused to use herbicide sprays,
out of justifiable concern that the persistent chemicals might permanently poison the fragile and arid soil.

Posted by: Shah Loam | Oct 17 2008 20:06 utc | 8

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