Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Top of the mornin'

Here is the best of the best for your lunchtime reading today. A mix of intel, conservative crackup debunking and Pope-remembrance columns.

From the intel side: Ashton Carter, former deputy defense secretary under Clinton, writes out of both sides of his pen in reaction to the Robb-Silberman Commission report. He seeks to create and equivalence between Clinton's help-NorKorea-go-nuclear policy and Bush's attempt to squeeze the NorKors with multilateral diplomacy instead of bombing them forward to the Stone Age. Then, forgetting about Libya's surrender and the Proliferation Security Initiative, he says "Indeed, since Sept. 11 the United States has suffered greater setbacks in counterproliferation than at any time since the 1980s, when Pakistan went nuclear. Until this changes, preventing intelligence failures will not matter." Smarten up -- there are seven words that debunk that claim: Jimmy Carter Agreed Framework North Korea 1994.

Next, more intel but Pope-related. Arnaud de Borchgrave details how the KGB initiated and outsourced the plot to assassinate the Pope in 1981. Recent Stasi files that have become public record confirm this.

More Pope remembrance, this time from Mark Steyn, who celebrates the Pope's adherence to morality in the face of the malleable standards of current progressivism.

From the incomparable and ridiculously-not-winning-a-Pulitzer (winners announced yesterday) Claudia Rosett comes this column thoroughly demolishing Kofi Annan's claim that the investigations into the Cotecna/Oil-for-Food connection exonerated him.

And finally, David Brooks sharpens his pen against the Left (they still let him do that at the NY Times). Here's the best of the lot: "Much as I admire my friends on the left for ingeniously explaining their recent defeats without really considering the possibility that maybe the substance of their ideas is the problem, I have to say that this explanation for conservative success and liberal failure is at odds with reality."

Enjoy your lunch.

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