Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Financial Accountability In Iraq And More Somalia (Tuesday's Second Hour)

Hi guys. We start the hour with a repeat of the Suzanne Malveaux piece and then move into a John Roberts piece about the money situation in Iraq. Right now the militias and insurgency are the best employers in the country. I wonder if they have dental. The US wants to start a jobs program, but it may be too little too late. When it comes to reconstruction money, Iraq is like a black hole. In fact the CPA actually lost $8.8 billion dollars. Yes, that's billion with a 'b'. I remember that actually. It was back when the news media was so atrocious they were basically nonexistent. Bloggers tried desperately to push the story into the media more, but were mostly unsuccessful. That was back when contractors were literally walking around with stacks of cash. They called them 'footballs' because when they got bored they'd toss them around. Check out the photo. That's your money. Anyway, good piece. More of this please.

Moving on now to a Bill Schneider piece on polls. What else? Basically we learn that Americans are losing patience with Iraq. I know, duh, right? After this we have some discussion with Bill, Suzanne, and John and then the Arwa Damon piece is repeated. Next up we have a Barbara Starr piece on the continuing situation in Somalia. The US is going after five Al Qaeda operatives, three of which were allegedly behind the embassy bombings. Apparently the US and African intelligence have been secretly tracking the men for a while. But for how long I wonder. This happened in 1998. To steal from Jon Stewart, I guess in 2010 Bin Laden better watch out. Something else I haven't heard much about is the fact that before the islamists took over, the US was backing warlords who then fought the islamists. So basically we were secretly fighting a proxy war and probably most Americans had no idea. The problem with this is that proxy wars can come back to bite you in the butt. Or are we forgetting that we backed Bin Laden when he fought the Soviets?

To talk about all of this, we're joined by Peter Bergen and Time's Sam Dealey. Peter I've missed you. Peter then talks a bit about the operatives the airstrike was aiming for and I am not tackling those names tonight. Sam tells us that what's ironic is that under the warlords Somalia was in chaos, but islamists brought stability. Unfortunately it was not fun stability. The rules were a bit extreme, but they are extemists, so there you go. Peter thinks it's irrelevant whether islamists are "playing footsie" with Al Qaeda in Somalia because there is no stable government there. Playing footsie? Oh Peter. I think 360 needs to do a Somalia 101 piece because after not covering any of this for so long, it's a lot of information all at once now. I know they've got "Raw Data", but a whole piece that really breaks everything down would be helpful to everyone I think. Next up there is a bunch of Oprah stuff that we saw yesterday. Anderson reads three blog comments regarding her school: two good and one bad.

So what do you think, would a Somalia 101 be helpful?

Photo of CPA officials via The Village Voice.


Anonymous Bev said...

Eliza I would love a 101 on Somalia. I'm just learning your politics and what's going on (I'm Canadian) I've been trying to look things up on the internet as I hear about different problems. I find my head spinning at times as I look up location first on the map then try to understand the problems of that country.

9:44 AM  
Anonymous Sharla Dawn said...

Yes on the Somalia 101. Actually I think they should do a USA 101! Anderson was a PolySci major (I think) so he's perfectly qualified to inform the rest of us morons how it works.

11:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somalia 101 sounds good to me.It seems to me that our news media, here in North America,constantly peppers us with news from the Middle-East.There is very little focus on the African continent. Having just returned from East Africa, I'm so amazed how global their print news media is. It puts our news media to shame.

5:48 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

Where did you go Gissou?

2:51 AM  

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