I’m enjoying a very nice vacation right now, helped by the fact that DQ has been writing such interesting stuff (as I knew he would). I’m anticipating checking in every couple of days, but it really is a relief to know I left things in good hands.
I discovered what will get your baggage searched: a suitcase full of books. Because we’re doing a resort, rather than a sight-seeing, vacation this year, we brought lots of books (I can see more than 30 from where I sit, although many are skinny children’s books). Apparently the suitcase felt too weird because, when I unpacked, there was a polite preprinted note from the TSA telling me they’d checked it out.
I wanted to tip you off to updates about the Scott Thomas story that I blogged about right before I left. It’s beginning to sound more and more like a fake. See here and here. Michael Goldfarb guesses as to why The New Republic, a magazine burned a decade or so ago by false reporting, would get into this morass again:
The important thing to remember here is that this isn’t a story about shoddy fact-checking or a regrettable lapse of journalistic ethics over at TNR, rather this is indicative of how the left views the American warfighter. To them, he’s capable of such savagery that the far-fetched stories related by “Scott Thomas” are not only credible on their face, but “exceptionally mild.”
Obviously American troops are every bit as capable of criminal behavior as their civilian peers, and perhaps more so owing to the stress and violence of daily life in Iraq, but misconduct by U.S. servicemen in Iraq has been the exception, not the rule. If the New Republic and its political kin weren’t predisposed to view American soldiers as barbaric, than the “Scott Thomas” story would have struck them, as it did everyone else who has since commented on it, as implausible at best. (I think it’s worth noting that while the Internet will present two sides to almost any issue, no matter how absurd the opposing view may be–i.e., the charge that it was Bush that brought down the Twin Towers–best I can tell, not a single person has stood up to defend this piece other than Foer, not a singly lefty blog, not a single reader.)
American Thinker also has an update to Ray Robison’s piece speculating about the possible identity of Scott Thomas.
I’m working on one of those computers with a mini-keyboard, and it’s wearing out my wrists. I’ll end by saying that it’s lovely to vacation within the U.S. We enjoy things that are different from home, but still appreciate things that are the same. Pleasure and ease — what could be better?