The New York Times is reporting on the death of (yet another) African strongman. Foday Sankoh, the warlord from Sierra Leone who made mutilations his signature weapon of war and came to symbolize the face of deranged cruelty, died Tuesday night in the custody of a United Nations-backed war crimes tribunal, officials of the court announced today. Sanokah was trained in Libya alongside of another whack job named Charles Taylor (Liberia). Sanokah had an offensive in 1998 called “”No Living Thing.”” Remember the kid soldiers who hacked off people’s arms? You guess it. Reminds of me of something P.J. O’Rourke once wrote: “”Man developed in Africa. He has not continued to do so there.”” ]]>
This poor polar bear was being treated for a skin condition by vets when the medicine they gave him turned his hair from white to purple. Doctors say it will take about a month but eventually his hair will change back to the normal color.]]>
Moscow Times. Platon Lebedev, arrested three weeks ago on charges arising from a 1994 privatization deal, was arrested as a warning shot to the oligarchs who now own Russia. The head of Yukos oil, Mikhail Khodorkovsky is really the target, as he is a multibillionaire with suspected political ambitions, but by arresting another they can send a message without having to really address an issue. Russia has been doing much better of late, thanks in large part to higher oil prices. In some ways, the whole country has its fortune tied up with oil as there is little else in the Russian economy (besides weapons) that are generating any foreign currency. And speaking of foreign currency, the Moscow Times also talks about a possible currency flight underway in Russia. “”The first week of Lebedev’s imprisonment cost the country $200 million in foreign exchange reserves, and the second week cost it $900 million — the biggest one-week drop in more than a year. The Central Bank posts its reserves for the previous week every Thursday, so the big question economists are asking now is, how much did week three of Lebedev’s arrest cost?”” And people wondered why the Russians wanted a client like Saddam in power in Iraq.]]>
Yahoo is reporting on the death of a British scientist in Antartica from a seal. She was scuba diving when the seal attacked her, apparently. Not sure how you get killed by a seal. In related news, I saw a really big fish that I thought was a seal. I also have still yet to finish the book “”South”” which is about Antartica. Not much else to report.]]>
Iraqwar I have a post today about the diminishing number of units in reserve. We are trying to accomplish a 16-division world with 10-divsions right now. It isn’t working out very well. I also don’t know the status of our carriers right now. I’m kind of wondering if we have that many to deploy, given the rather long duty several had to pull during Iraqi Freedom.
the Moscow Times has some pretty intense photos. Anyway, in looking at the pictures, I realized I’ve been where that bomb was. It’s just a few blocks up from the Mariott Grand hotel in Moscow, and it’s probably at a restaurant frequented by a bunch of expats and New Russians. Kind of scary to know the area of a bomb blast. ]]>