Making raw meat into Obama’s War Team.

One cartoon, two versions, about a shocking event in 2009 – President Obama deciding to continue the war. Wow.

I missed the 60 Minutes interview the LA Times is talking about here. (Is that show still on the air?)

Discussing in strikingly personal terms his order to escalate the war in Afghanistan, President Obama said Sunday that sending 30,000 new combat troops was the hardest decision of his presidency so far.

Can you understand now why I get so annoyed with the Times? WTH, “strikingly personal”??? Because he said he felt bad talking to the cadets? Geez, what a revelation.

It goes on:

Critics have said his plan is confusing and contradictory because although it calls for the new deployment, it also sets a July 2011 date to start withdrawing troops.

I don’t know about contradictory, but I’ve found that the best way to broadcast your intentions, leak your war plans, and help out the enemy is to put the details on Twitter, Mr. President.

(another version of the cartoon is after the jump)

CNN says:

In his speech Tuesday, Obama said his strategy had three objectives:

• Deny al Qaeda a safe haven

• Reverse the Taliban’s momentum and deny it the ability to overthrow Afghanistan’s government

• Strengthen Afghanistan’s security forces and government

I hope it works out that way. This is a DayPlanner type strategy, isn’t it.

 Barack Obama, International cartoons

Veteran’s Day cartoon for War Dogs, too.

Veteran's day cartoon with war dog (german shephard?)

The slayings at Fort Hood came very close to Veteran’s Day, so I think some cartoonists broke out their sad pens early. I did a cartoon on something worse than Ft. Hood, which I’ll put up later this week. Meanwhile, tomorrow is Veteran’s Day, so…

Since I just started doing op-ed cartoons in February for Slate, I wasn’t sure how to approach this holiday, and what type of editorial cartoon would be respectful yet also cheerful! What do vets do? I don’t know any, except my father. Surely not all of them are decrepit, as so often they are drawn in cartoons. I hate parades. Do I draw another cemetery? I don’t even know what clothes they wear. read more

Torture in Gitmo, and Tasers in the USA.

Nancy Pelosi seems so far away now, doesn’t she? There was a story that didn’t last long. Or tptb buried it! Yet it was just last month…

I’m sure she did know about the CIA tortures in Guantanamo Bay. Politico says she did. She was probably only given a few details, and didn’t quite understand it: no one is proud of torture, even, or maybe especially, the armed services. Many decision-makers just believe it has to be done. I’ve read that it’s not an efficient way to get confessions,  but I’m quite sure I would squeal about anything in the world after about 1 minute of it. Maybe less.

News reports say only 3 of the Gitmo detainees were actually waterboarded, which everyone agrees is the worst kind of torture. One of these guys claimed responsibility for beheading Daniel Pearl – and nothing is more heinous than beheading someone, in my kingdom. But US News & World Report says:

Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the mastermind of 9/11, has claimed responsibility for beheading Pearl, but it recently came to light that the al Qaeda operative was waterboarded more than 180 times in 30 days. This has left some of Pearl’s colleagues skeptical of the confession.

Um, me, too, now.   This is certainly going overboard. Who’s telling the truth?

I’ve written before that I hate torture more than murder. Still, I do think that as a LAST RESORT it MIGHT be necessary to save many many more lives. Just seems like common telephone marketers and “people persons” like bomb squad talkers, could do a better job at getting people to talk, doesn’t it?

But let’s jump to our legal torture, Tasers. Police in the US have been using Tasers for what, 8 years? Reading the news, it appears that most, if not all major cities use

Navy sonar is like unsolicited sales calls to whales.

I first read about this last fall. From the Christian Science Monitor:

In a 6-3 ruling on Wednesday, the high court criticized a federal judge in California for imposing restrictions that the majority justices said jeopardized national security in an effort to protect the environment.

MFA sonars send intense pulses of noise through the water that can disrupt or injure marine mammals nearby. Scientists say it can trigger fatal mass strandings under certain circumstances.

Joel Reynolds, a senior NRDC attorney, said the high court left in place undisputed portions of the federal judge’s order concerning Navy training. As a result, the Navy must continue to abide by a 12-mile coastal buffer zone and must continue to avoid the Catalina Basin, an area with a high concentration of marine mammals.

Check out this killer whale video to actually see whales in Puget Sound reacting to Navy sonar.  Umm, how much proof are they waiting for?

Well, that’s the point, isn’t it. The Navy has the proof, they’re just making a judgment call (no puns, thanks.) that they have to keep making the same sonar sounds over and over, like 3 year olds playing with their toys.   I’ve noticed some scientists are like this, too, unfortunately; they base science on a hypothesis, with a provable result, and then spend years doing the SAME tests over and over. That sounds like a video game to me.

Anyway, I see very few editorial cartoons about natural history or science or even technology, and I don’t know why. Do they know something I don’t? Maybe. So I do some, because the world outside of the White House is important, too, but I space them out!  C