Tuesday, July 24, 2007

All the world's a stage

Among the risks that George Bush has run with today's speech highlighting the US claim that the head of al-Qaeda in Iraq is a fictional character is that al Qaeda in Iraq could simply have Abu Omar al-Baghdadi pop up in person to issue an actual statement. Of course then the US would claim that that person was also an actor. But remember that George Bush's speech was supposed to make it clearer who it is that his troops are fighting.

Another risk with the speech is that more people might wonder how it is that the Iraqi prisoner Khaled Abdul-Fattah Dawoud Mahmoud al-Mashadani who was the source of such talking-point-ready information started talking so quickly once he was in captivity. It couldn't be that the CIA interrogation program is being used in Iraq, now could it?

Another risk is highlighted by Bush's use of the passive voice in explaining how al Qaeda in Iraq got started.

UPDATE: It's particularly bizarre to see the Wall Street Journal editorial page screaming for al-Mashadani to be sent to Gitmo for further interrogation since he's clearly already singing like a canary under the interrogation regimen in Iraq.