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Technorati is indexing me again! They had to make a code change to fix the problem with my blog getting stuck in their queue. Kudos to Eric M. and the guys at GetSatisfaction.com where they have "community powered support for Technorati".
Well, they're "sorta, kinda" indexing me anyway. It's on a 24 hour tape delay or something. So I never get picked up by Memeorandum because they pull from Technorati and Technorati has stuff I posted yesterday listed as my latest blog entry. And that's old news to Memeorandum.
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#VRWC Twitter feed:
It was in all his stump speeches. "Al-Qaeda is on the path to defeat and Osama Bin Laden is dead." My liberal friends liked to rub it in too, saying Obama is a better wartime president than Bush was because with Al Qaeda on the run we're safer than ever.
So riddle me this Batman — who are these guys running the show in Mali?
Deep inside caves, in remote desert bases, in the escarpments and cliff faces of northern Mali, Islamic fighters are burrowing into the earth, erecting a formidable set of defenses to protect what has essentially become Al Qaeda's new country.
They have used the bulldozers, earth movers and Caterpillar machines left behind by fleeing construction crews to dig what residents and local officials describe as an elaborate network of tunnels, trenches, shafts and ramparts. In just one case, inside a cave large enough to drive trucks into, they have stored up to 100 drums of gasoline, guaranteeing their fuel supply in the face of a foreign intervention, according to experts.
Northern Mali is now the biggest territory held by Al Qaeda and its allies. And as the world hesitates, delaying a military intervention, the extremists who seized control of the area earlier this year are preparing for a war they boast will be worse than the decade-old struggle in Afghanistan.
"Al-Qaeda never owned Afghanistan," said former United Nations diplomat Robert Fowler, a Canadian kidnapped and held for 130 days by Al Qaeda's local chapter, whose fighters now control the main cities in the north. "They do own northern Mali."
Turbaned fighters now control all the major towns in the north, carrying out amputations in public squares like the Taliban did. Just as in Afghanistan, they are flogging women for not covering up. Since taking control of Timbuktu, they have destroyed seven of the 16 mausoleums listed as world heritage sites.
Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, known as AQIM, operates not just in Mali, but in a corridor along much of the northern Sahel. This 4,300-mile long ribbon of land runs across the widest part of Africa, and includes sections of Mauritania, Niger, Algeria, Libya, Burkina Faso and Chad.
"One could come up with a conceivable containment strategy for the Swat Valley," said Africa expert Peter Pham, an adviser to the U.S. military's African command center, referring to the region of Pakistan where the Pakistan Taliban have been based. "There's no containment strategy for the Sahel, which runs from the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea."
If that's a "defeat," I'd hate to see what happens when Al-Qaeda really gets their act together.
It's too bad that nobody wanted to talk about this kind of stuff before the
election. Because, you know, vaginas.
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