Saturday, July 30, 2005

Aaaaand....we're back

It's been WAY too long since I posted last and seeing as I'm taking my leave from our nation's capital after this weekend, I wanted to put up a quick note to reassure our reader(s) that Exit145 remains a two-man affair. That certainly didn't sound right.

Anyway, regular readers may recall my interest in recent developments in Uzbekistan, particularly Andijon. The story has moved slowly but surely from posts on obscure blogs to (gasp!) the front page of Eric's favorite liberal rag, the NY Times. Check out the article, which summarizes the diplomatic and military situation in the country almost as accurately as Exit145 would have were it not for an extended summer vacation. In brief, pressure from the state department (and to a lesser degree the Pentagon) has forced President Karimov's hand. The Uzbek government has demanded that U.S. forces leave the country within 6 months. Strategically speaking, Uzbekistan has been invaluable as a jumping off point for operations in Afghanistan. As this page has noted before, however, it had come time for Bush's policy to match his rhetoric in dealing with the Uzbek leadership and we're happy to see that it now does. Now that this story has a major following, we will continue to update you on the facts and our opinions on such.

--Frank

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

JAG Memos Declassified

The JAG Memos on Military Interrogation have finally been declassified and they tell quite a story. These memos are written by the JAGs, the military's in-house lawyers, and are a reaction to the infamous John Yoo memo, which essentially justified the legalization of the use of torture. The Yoo memo has still not been declassified, though the policy it lays out has since been repudiated by the administration. These JAG memos are a significant development in the ongoing debate over torture. And they are inspiring and reassuring to those of us who have faith in the professionalism and humanity of the majority of those who direct the course of the United States military.

Please, read the actual memos on your own, or read Marty Lederman's analysis. It's a lot to digest, but more soon.
-- Eric

Monday, July 25, 2005

Response to Anonymous Commenter

A thoughtful commenter writes:

Curious about this:
[W]hether they think The Times and the rest of the media peform an essential service for our country (many conservatives believe they don't)

Many conservatives don't believe that the media perform an essential service for the country?

I'm unaware of a single notable person on the Right who believes that the press isn't a vital institution in a free society. Vital, essential, irreplaceable, et cetera.

Could you perhaps clarify that?

Conservatives are deeply sceptical of government, albeit less so when they're running things. But that goes with the Left too. Recall Clinton's line: "You cannot both love your country and hate your government"?

Perhaps I should have been a bit more clear. I believe a more accurate statement would be that many conservatives don't believe that the media as it is currently constituted performs an essential service. Glenn Reynolds and Powerline, among many others, have instead argued on many occasions that the MSM primarily undermine our war effort. I give you examples of statements like this here, here, here, here, here, and of course here.

Those links are just the result of a quick search, but I know I have seen Instapundit suggest on many occasions that the mainstream media as a whole was being "unhelpful." If any reader can find such a quote, let me know.
-- Eric