War With Iran Planned for April 6?

The War is Coming to Iran – April 6th at 4 am – US has Warned Financial Interests in the Area and the Media Crews are Deployed | Government Dirt:

US Central Command 5th Fleet officers headquartered at Manama spoke of security tension, a hint at an approaching war with Iran. Arab sources report the positioning of a Patriot anti-missile battery in Bahrain this week; they say occupancy at emirate hotels has soared past 90% due mostly to the influx of US military personnel. They also report Western media crews normally employed in military coverage are arriving in packs. Thursday, March 29, General Khaled al-‘Absi, Bahrain’s chief of air defense operations disclosed that new alarm networks had been installed and air defense systems upgraded to handle chemical, biological and radioactive attacks.

Moscow sources have predicting that a US strike against Iranian nuclear installations codenamed Operation Bite has been scheduled for April 6 at 4 AM until 4 PM local time. Friday is a holiday in Iran. In the course of the attack, about 20 targets are marked for bombing; the list includes uranium enrichment facilities, research centers, and laboratories. Missiles and air raids will conduct strikes designed to be devastating enough to set Tehran’s nuclear program back several years. The US attack plan reportedly calls for the Iranian air defense system to be degraded, for numerous Iranian warships to be sunk in the Persian Gulf, and for the most important headquarters of the Iranian armed forces to be wiped out. Massive air attacks with the goal of annihilating Iran’s capacity for military resistance, the centers of administration, the key economic assets, and quite possibly the Iranian political leadership, or at least part of it.

This attack is sanctioned by the Democratic leadership of the House of Representatives because they removed language from the just-passed Iraq supplemental military appropriations bill that would have demanded that Bush come to Congress before launching an attack on Iran.

Uh… I hope this is wrong.

More from Daily Kos.

Hatch Act? What’s the Hatch Act?

Think Progress » Rove’s PowerPoint Presentation Revealed During Oversight Hearing:

Holy crap. As you might hope would be the case, it is illegal for government officials to engage in partisan campaign activities on Federal property (so says the Hatch Act). Thanks to the subpoenaed emails for the attorney-firing scandal, the House is in possession of a powerpoint presentation given by Karl Rove at a national videoconference convened by Lurita Doan, House General Services Administration chief. The presentation reads like a GOP smoke-filled-room planning session, with headings like “2008 House Targets: Top 20” (there follows a listing of vulnerable seats held by Democrats) and “2008 House GOP Defense” and “Battle for the Senate 2008”.

The House Oversight Committee interviewed Doan under oath, and man, that was an uncomfortable interview. It’s like she suddenly contracted a wicked case of Alzheimer’s and couldn’t remember a damn thing.

Recommended watching.

It’s kind of fun seeing America in general and Washington in particular wake up to the sheer evil of the Bush Administration after all these years. Would have been nice if it hadn’t taken this long.

Futz of the Weekend: mouseHole

mouseHole is a spiffy project. It’s a little web proxy that lives on your desktop and can rewrite html that passes through it in arbitrary ways using a powerful html parsing library called Hpricot.

Tres spiff. I had a hard time installing it until I realized the current version depends on libraries which depend on a newer version of Ruby than is shipped with the mac. I eventually found I could install everything I needed with MacPorts and RubyGems.

When I finally got it all working, I discovered there has just been a major, major version jump — the new 2.0 version is supposedly much better than the old — and there are very few scripts written for the new version.

No prob, the fun is making your own, right?

I tried, and while some things worked, I kept hitting errors that looked like this:

Sun Mar 25 23:13:11 -0400 2007: ERROR: execution expired

which hosed things up until I restarted the proxy.

That sort of thing can put a real cramp in your browsing style, so I’m gonna call this one a “keep an eye on it” project for now. It would be really cool to have a greasemonkey-like scripting engine that worked no matter what browser you were using, wouldn’t it? Forget your firefox extensions, you could have mousehole apps which were easier to read, write, and understand (they are), and which you could use with Safari as easily as with Firefox. It’s a beautiful dream.

But right now the dream requires more effort than I can give, despite the screeching of the futzmonkey.

For the record, here’s the easiest way to get mousehole installed and working on OS X:

Install MacPorts.

Install the ports ‘ruby’ and ‘rb-rubygems’ (and any dependencies), to get the latest version of ruby.

sudo gem source -a http://code.whytheluckystiff.net/

sudo gem install mousehole

Say yes to all dependencies and kick back.

Overall though, sadly, the time I’ve spent on this this weekend falls in the what the hell is wrong with me category.

No, That Was a Feature, Not a Bug

Patrick Logan notes in passing that an Object Oriented system without a class hierarchy — using pure delegation between objects — was a radical idea back in 1986. Right now the only really mainstream impact it’s made* is in Javascript. But now:

Javascript is getting “serious” by adding classes and type checking and so on. Bah. Forgive them for they know not…

[* that is, until we all welcome our new Io overlords!]

The War Nerd on 300

eXile – Issue #259 – War Nerd – Triumph Of The Vile – By Gary Brecher:

Athens, the true hero of the war against Persia, gets dissed time and again in this movie. You won’t hear a word in 300 about Salamis, the real decisive battle of the war – because it was Athens, not Sparta, that destroyed the Persian fleet at Salamis. The Spartans wanted to run away from the Persian fleet and wall themselves off in the Peloponnese (you wouldn’t believe how many times I’ve messed up the spelling on that damn word). They didn’t have a clue about combined-arms operations (which the Athenians handled durn well). In fact, the Spartans, who are called “the finest soldiers in history” over and over in this movie, were a mediocre, one-dimensional, inflexible military force.

The War Nerd comes through again.

Only amateur fascists admire Sparta guys like Frank Miller, who are still pissed off because people like me dared to warn them the Iraq war was going to be a disaster. Now Miller and his fellow neocons have gone so over the deep end of delusional thinking that they’ve resorted to fantasizing about Sparta, where nobody ever argued, where everyone yelled and stabbed and otherwise kept their mouths shut.

It’s downright hilarious the way this movie punishes every smart character. Every time someone wants to argue with the war party in this movie, he’s evil. Everybody who talks in a normal tone of voice is evil. Miller shows two scenes where the Spartans murder Persian envoys arriving under a flag of truce. And both times, you’re supposed to cheer.

Since when do Americans cheer when truce parties are murdered? Well, that’s pretty easy to answer, actually: since Iraq. These diehard neocons have gone insane because there’s no way they can argue for an invasion of Iran any more. But they still want it, bad. So they’ve taken a crash course in fascism, jumping all the way to cheering for Sparta and booing for Athens – because Athens stands for brains and flexibility and talking things out. They can’t win the argument, so they want to kill anybody who tries to argue. That’s why Leonidas kicks the Persian envoy down a well.