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Opening The Files: 02/13/07

Penetrating the Propaganda.

On Sunday, the Bushies added to the list of acronyms our troops face in Iraq. In an anonymous PowerPoint presentation (pdf), briefers attempted to lay out their case that Iran was behind the so-called "explosively formed penetrators" or EFP's causing mass causalities amongst coalition forces. To paraphrase one astute blogger, the presentation made Colin Powell's UN speech look credible by comparison.

And credibility is of course a real problem for the Bushies. America is once bitten, twice shy when it comes to believing anything the administration says, especially when it's evidence that could lead to more war. It doesn't exactly help when the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs refuses to endorse assertions that Iran's government is behind the arms shipments. But, hey, not to worry. If this "Iran is the real problem" campaign doesn't work out, there's always the Gulf of Tonkin approach.

Something else to ponder about this whole Iranian EFP's meme: at same we are told about how deadly these devices have been to our forces, we also learn our troops still lack the proper armor to protect against such threats. If, as the PowerPoint alleges, these types of weapons have been around since 2004, why are our troops still unprotected from them? And why are we only hearing about these allegations in earnest now?

Patrick Cockburn says that the administration wishes us to believe that the Iraqi's were so technologically advanced just a few years ago that they could produce WMD but now they lack the skills needed to build a weapon that has been around in some form or another for nearly a century?

Libby Spencer thinks that maybe military planners should read some fantasy fiction. Certainly they want us to buy their fairy tales.

AJ is unconvinced the Bushies will attack Iran. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't still push back against the stupidity.

Tim Grieve notes how stories from "anonymous sources" use to be resigned to the inner folds of printed media.

Josh Marshall on some of the fundamental questions that still aren't being asked.

And finally, Glenn Greenwald, in one of his last posts before moving to his new home, wonders if we are giving Democrats an undue pass on ending the war in Iraq.

Elsewhere in the 'tubes...

Following up on my previous post about the influence that the show "24" is having on our anti-terrorism efforts, some big names in the blogosphere are also weighing in on the controversy. Check out Will Bunch, Digby, Christy, Carpetbagger, Kevin Drum, and Ezra Klein.

(Filed at State of the Day)