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Steve Gilliard, 1964-2007

It is with tremendous sadness that we must convey the news that Steve Gilliard, editor and publisher of The News Blog, passed away June 2, 2007. He was 42.

To those who have come to trust The News Blog and its insightful, brash and unapologetic editorial tone, we have Steve to thank from the bottom of our hearts. Steve helped lead many discussions that mattered to all of us, and he tackled subjects and interest categories where others feared to tread.

Please keep Steve's friends and family in your thoughts and prayers.

Steve meant so much to us.

We will miss him terribly.

photo by lindsay beyerstein


War Czar

Recently Retired Marine General Sheehan turned down the 'honor' of being named War Czar. Lets gloss over the fact that we already have someone who is supposed to be a Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, but that lazy, awol, coward doesnt have a clue about what to do. So apparently Karl is looking around for another dancing monkey to put on stage as they try to run out the clock.

General Sheehan explains why he declined the offer here in the wapo. I presume he felt guilty as a Marine with 35 years of service refusing his country's call. As he states the new position would require:

The day-to-day work of the White House implementation manager overseeing Iraq and Afghanistan would require a great deal of emotional and intellectual energy resolving critical resource issues in a bureaucracy that, to date, has not functioned well.

"has not functioned well", of course means, doesnt have fucking clue. The General has learned to at least be civilized on the pages of the wapo, pretty impressive restraint for a Marine.

He does make a clear assessment of the Cheney Bush strategy in Iraq : We have never gotten it right in Iraq ... (snip) ... These huge shortcomings are not going to be resolved by the assignment of an additional individual to the White House staff.

The General knows, as do many of the readers here, Bush has no strategy, except stall until January 2009. Thats Bush's only interest here. I dont credit him with understanding that he cant win. He just doesnt know what to do, and equates leaving with losing. The only way out of Iraq is for Congress to step up.

When a guy with these credentials is saying that this war is being run by a small but powerful group that [is constantly repeating] we are going to "win," even as "victory" is not defined or is frequently redefined., Congress should realize just how weak Bush is. All this bluster about congress better shape up and send him a bill he can sign is odd. Why not just veto the thing. Why all the sturm and drang? Is it bluff?