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Posted at 8:15 AM ET, 12/ 5/2010

Morning Bits

By Jennifer Rubin

In case you doubted Russian perfidy. Eli Lake has gone through the WikiLeaks documents to get the goods on Russian aggression against Georgia. "Russia waged a covert war against Georgia that included missile attacks, arms shipments to anti-government rebels and car bombings since 2004, a newly disclosed U.S. Embassy cable says. Among the secret war operations were a 2007 helicopter gunship attack on the headquarters of a pro-government group in the Georgian province of Abkhazia, and the murder of Georgian police officers in the town of Gory."

In case you doubted that she possessed literary greatness. Christine O'Donnell gets a book deal. Titles? How to Make a Safe Seat Disappear. My Spell in Politics.

In case you doubted that there is a dearth of journalistic ethics. "The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) [on Friday] called on those journalism schools and professional organizations that have recognized journalist Helen Thomas to rescind their honors after she 'clearly, unequivocally revealed herself as a vulgar anti-Semite' in remarks to an Arab American group. In a speech yesterday in Dearborn, Michigan, the former White House correspondent not only defended the earlier anti-Jewish remarks that led to her sudden resignation, but went on to claim that she was made to pay a price for her remarks because of the power of the Jewish lobby in the United States." Even before this incident, why would any school honor her? It's pathetic that the ADL statement is even necessary.

In case you doubted that WikiLeaks would be embarrassing to the "smart" diplomacy crowd. It seems everyone we asked rejected "linkage" and dismissed Iranian engagement. "What is shocking, however, is the extent to which the White House's official policy for the last two years ignored sound counsel from its close allies in the region. Perhaps this was a result of the administration's natural inclinations and impulses. However, if it's not yet abundantly clear, the foreign policy establishment's discredited, grand strategic template needs to be shelved once and for all."

In case you doubted that we're operating under the burden of a number of security myths. John Wohlstetter identifies eight of them and concludes: "Instead of having ill-trained TSA agents search for bad things, have well-trained agents search for bad people. Profile by behavior and circumstance (cash ticket, one-way trip, etc.), and leave most of us alone. Compile accurate no-fly lists. Heed credible warnings. Ignore political correctness."

In case you doubted we are heading for further economic woes. "As bad as Friday's anemic jobs report turned out, it's just the beginning of a further rise in unemployment that will reach double digits, Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's told CNBC.'Friday's numbers are surprising and don't feel right relative to other economic data,' Zandi said. 'But once the economy gets in a groove, we're going to see more unemployment as the labor force grows. We could see 10 percent by the end of this year or early in 2011.'"

In case you doubted whether there are conservatives who care about the AIDS epidemic. Read Peter Wehner's eloquent defense of the Bush AIDS initiative.

In case you doubted that the Senate will be a different place come January. J. Christian Adams writes about the nominee for deputy attorney general and suggests a tough road ahead for the Obama administration.

By Jennifer Rubin  | December 5, 2010; 8:15 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Bits  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Friday Question -- open thread
Next: The tax-cut vote and political realignment


Helen Thomas's anti Semitic and anti Jewish remarks are actually helpful. Her brutal and vulgar expressions of relgious and ethnic hatred should have consigned her to the journalistic wilderness and rendered her persona non grata among decent peopl. Instead her remarks have exposed the deep and abiding Jew hatred still alive and well in the American Moslem and Arab communities since they have actually been welcomed and appalauded by American Moslem and Arab groups. This why I encourage individuals who hate and despise Jews to give full voice to their loathsome feelings. It not only exposes them for the vile people they are, but it also encourages individuals and groups who share their feelings to come forward as well. The Moslem, Arab, and university groups who have honored Helen Thomas, and not rescinded their honors deserve even more censure than Ms. Thomas. Helen Thomas can be excused as a half senile, hate riddled, worn out Arab American hag who has lost what few marbles she may have had, but those who honored her can offer no excuse, they knew exactly what they were doing.

Posted by: Beniyyar | December 5, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

I agree with beniyyar--political correctness should be fought for the simple reason that it makes it much harder to find out who people really are, and there is nothing we need more today than to have people's real thinking exposed as soon as possible.

Posted by: adam62 | December 5, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

""What is shocking, however, is the extent to which the White House's official policy for the last two years ignored sound counsel from its close allies in the region."

Fair enough, why don't you also include the other information about Iran in the cables? Namely, that the Bush administration was warned that by attacking Iraq, they were creating a monster in Iran.

It didn't take a gneius to see that with a majority Shiite population, once you removed the minority Sunni govenment, Iran would become domninant. Not only that but Dick Cheney PROMOTED terrorism in the region by personally authorizing and assisting in the return of Ahmed Chalabi to Iraq. Chalabi has since been proven to be an Iranian double agent who has turned on his handlers. He obtained a key position in the Iraqi government where he nearly brought the most recent Iraqia elections to a stop by disqualifying many Sunnis from running. It was only great arm-twisiting on our part that made the Sunnis stay in the process at all. He has also been linked to large amounts of the missing cash that went to Iraq but was never accounted for.

Dick Cheney, Iran's best friend!

Posted by: 54465446 | December 5, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Presuuming that these are her lifelong views, and not some 90 year old slip into senility, what I'm wondering is this. Where were all her colleagues for the last 50 years?

Did they cover for her all this time? Did she disguise herself in some way, or is this an example of some unspoken brotherhood among reporters? Are there many other reporters right now who privately have the same views among friends but publicly say nothing?

Richard Cohen wrote a column in June in which he stated:

"Thomas, of Lebanese ancestry and almost 90, has never been shy about her anti-Israel views, for which, as far as I'm concerned, she is wrong and to which she is entitled."

Well ok Richard, but wouldn't it have been useful many years ago to write a column inviting Thomas to debate the point in the open?

Posted by: 54465446 | December 5, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

The word is dearth, not dirth! Even spell-check should have caught that.

Posted by: alcross1 | December 5, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Jennifer again in the sake of fairness, shouldn't you explain that what Zandt means is not GROWING unemployment, or new job losses in general but people who are currently unemployed who attempt to return to the work force but find jobs not there yet. He's a good commentator and has made that point on CNBC, as have many others.

Now a really intersting point, if you're wonkish about business is whether that number is an outlier, among generally improving economic indicators this fall OR whether it presages that this is the new normal an improving ecnomy which has learned to permanently do without many workers.

The distinction is REALLY crucial to the actions taken next. If as, I believe, it's the latter, the course the Fed is on will take us to a super hot blast of real inflation while core inflation numbers remain relatively low, sometime in the second half of 2011.

Sorry if I'm going all economic on you!

Posted by: 54465446 | December 5, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

@Beniyyar | December 5, 2010 9:00 AM

Hear, hear!

I would only add that in publicizing such entrenched Jew-hatred for the despicable and ignorant bigotry that it is, it should be couched in unambiguous condemnation, as it clearly was in your comments.

Posted by: HenriLeGrand | December 5, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

"Baghdad (CNN) -- A series of bomb attacks shook Iraq's capital of Baghdad on Saturday morning, killing 14 people and wounding more than 80 others, Baghdad police said.

The attacks, which police say appear to have been coordinated, happened as Iraqi security forces increased their presence to protect Shiites traveling from Iran during Muharram, one of the holiest months in the Muslim calendar."

An attack by Sunnis on Shiites, OR an attack by Shiites on Shiites in an effort to justify greater intervention in the Iraqi government?

Posted by: 54465446 | December 5, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Regarding jobs, I think technology is making many jobs obsolete, so double digit unemployment may be with us until our schools can turn out fewer illiterates.

And, Jennifer, isn't all this 'peace process' bidness utterly absurd as long as Palestinian children are taught to hate and murder Jews?

Shouldn't our newspapers of record record more facts on the routine incitement which is part and parcel of Palestinian life?

Posted by: ZoltanNewberry | December 5, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Friday's anemic jobs report turned out, it's just the beginning of a further rise in unemployment that will reach double digits

Jennifer,it is a fact that anyone who follows our economy closly knows that our true unemployment rate is 17% if you use the criteria that was used throughout the 80s,but the actual rate is 22%+,FACT.
My opinion is that the Tea Party/Conservative/Republicans don't wish to make public the real #s because then,they have to fix the real problem. Ask John Steele Gordon what his opinion is of the accuracy of the unemployment #s,and Remember who is generating those #s. An administration desparate for better #s.

Posted by: rcaruth | December 5, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Jennifer,for the past two years,you have been writing that our unemployment rate is 9.6 or whatever,those are the Obama official #s. When,all you had to do was Google three words,TRUE EMPLOYMENT RATE, and you would get better #s. Here is an article from the beloved NY POST resulting from that search.
Is this about lack of curiosity or lack of interest or what? BTW you can do the same thing for TRUE INFLATION RATE,TRUE GDP,TRUE DEFICITS,TRUE LIES etc.
?????????/I don't get it,obviously.

Posted by: rcaruth | December 5, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

“In case you doubted that WikiLeaks would be embarrassing to the "smart" diplomacy crowd…”

Now would be a good occasion for a RESET, if only there were some way to effect a Creditability Reset.

Posted by: nvjma | December 5, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

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