Typical Army recruit
-Headline of the day-
"Sex, lies and basic training."
From what you see in movies, you'd probably believe that Army basic training sucks. And it does -- but in a less metaphorical sense than you might believe. In fact, if you're an instructor, it's pretty awesome. The report lists just a few of the perks you'd enjoy in that duty; "Drinking parties. Sex in the laundry room. Social dates and text messaging. Sex in a truck. In a bathroom. And in the barracks."
According to the report, "Between February 2007 and November 2008, 12 drill sergeants and advanced individual training instructors at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., admitted in court-martial proceedings to having engaged in such forbidden sexual and social relationships with trainees."
“Drill sergeants have a position of trust, and because of that, there cannot be any interaction between cadre and a soldier in training, this includes socializing, riding in personal vehicles, lunch or any fraternization at any level,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Gary Newsome, commandant of the Drill Sergeant School at Fort Jackson.
It turns out that, if you're going to train recruits to be an army of one, you're going to have to be a lonely little army of one yourself. The parties, the laundry room sex -- all done. The power difference between instructor and recruit makes it pretty much impossible for it to be anything other than sexual harassment -- even if it seems consensual. "Army leaders say there is no such thing as consensual sex between a drill sergeant and a trainee," the report reads. "It is against Army regulation."
You still get to call people maggots, though. So there's that. (Army Times)
-Just a victim of circumstance-
George W. Bush is the most misunderstood man on the planet. See, he wasn't a lying sack who led the nation into a completely boneheaded invasion of Iraq. No, he's as much of a victim as anyone else. According to the report, "He and members of his national security brain trust, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, would like to dispel the narrative that they misled the country into war. Instead, both Bush and Rice are trying to characterize the White House as the unwitting recipient of faulty intelligence."
That's right. All that crap they made up about smoking guns and mushroom clouds and significant quantities of uranium from Niger? They fell for it. Hook, line, and sinker. What a bunch of poor saps.
When your only excuse is that you fell for your own propaganda, you're pretty much leaving it up to the observer to decide whether you're lying or stupid. There really aren't any other options.
I say they're both. (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Al-Zaidi charged for throwing shoes in presence of Maliki, not for aiming at Bush."
Hero of the Arab world, Muntader al-Zaidi -- the journalist who chucked his shoes at Bush's head -- has been charged with a crime for his actions. CNN Baghdad correspondent Michael Ware reported that al-Zaidi "is being investigated for possible charges not connected to assaulting President Bush, but for doing it in front of the Iraqi Prime Minister and hurling the shoes in the Prime Minister’s general direction rather than at President Bush’s head."
It's not a huge surprise. I'd imagine it'd be hard to find an Iraqi who doesn't want to throw a hammer at Bush's head, let alone a pair of shoes. I'm surprised he isn't being charged with missing. (Think Progress)