I put the post below up on Monday, Apr. 3. I believe it contains the first public statement made by any parent of a Duke Men’s lacrosse player.
Since Apr. 3, the public has learned a great deal that the police, DA and media knew then and had known for weeks, but hadn’t told the public. For instance, that the 3 lacrosse players who rented the house where the gang-rape was alleged to have occurred voluntarily gave statements to the police, voluntarily went to Duke Hospital and submitted to “rape tests,” and offered to take lie-detector tests.
I think you may welcome the opportunity to take a second look at the post with the benefit of what we’ve all learned since it was first published.
One other piece of background: On Apr. 2, The N&O published the infamous
“vigilante poster” despite pleas that doing so would only make it more likely that hate groups would target the lacrosse players, something that has come to pass.
Be sure to note the two comments at the end. They were prophetic
DUKE LACROSSE MOTHER SPEAKS OUT
The media attacks on the Duke lacrosse team following an alleged rape at a party hosted by 3 members of team include two news columns by The Raleigh News & Observer’s Ruth Sheehan. ("Team's silence is sickening" and "Lacrosse team out of control")
Among other things Sheehan’s demanded: “Shut down the team.” She wants Duke to “dump” its coach.
Today at Sheehan's new blog a mother of one of the team members responded to her attacks.
I’m publishing the mother’s comment in full. It's a don't miss. I follow it with a response to the mother, which I left at Sheehan's blog.
The mother began:
I don't know if you have any children, I can't imagine that you do.
I'm sure you are aware of the cruelty and profound harm of discrimination against groups of people.
My son is a Freshman student-athlete on the Duke Lacrosse team. He is a young man honored for his integrity, academics and sportsmanship. He is a high school All American. He has worked hard since he was five years old to excel in a sport that he loves.
It is very difficult to put that much time into a sport and maintain excellent grades and an extensive record of community service. There are many other boys on this team who are similarly honored.
There are Christians who have never had a beer.
There are boys who did not go to the party.
There are boys who left the party early and did not have a beer.
And then there are boys who are "vile," "out of control" boys who have been arrested with an open container of beer. Why don't you delve into the arrest records of all Duke athletes, of all Duke students, or of all Duke employees, for that matter?
Can you imagine how proud my son was when he was recruited to Duke to study and play the sport in which he excels?
I went to Duke and his brother and sister graduated from Duke. Our love and respect for the University has been central to our lives.
You are discriminating against one group of people, not because of fact, but because of innuendo.
You are writing harmful generalizations about boys whom you know nothing about.
When these allegations are proven false, will you write about the woman who has victimized these boys? No, you won't because that is not sensationalist news.
These boys have faces. They are individuals with families. To grossly characterize them is slander and libel. You should be "dumped."
To the Duke lacrosse Mom:
Thank you for speaking out.
While many people are eager for the type of reporting/prosecution The N&O has been providing, many of us are keeping an open mind. We don't have lynch mob mentalities. We want things to work out in ways that are as fair and just as possible for all.
I can only imagine the intensity of the fears you and others must have now as you listen and read reports from police of threats of physical violence directed at Duke students in general, and members of the men's lacrosse team in particular.
Given those reports a lot of us thought Sheehan would at least tone down her attacks on the team. I talked to some people this morning who are not admirers of hers or The N&O but who were still surprised, even shocked, that in the current circumstances she and The N&O would run today's column.
We’re very sorry they did.
To your question as to whether Sheehan has children: She does, and sometimes writes about incidents impacting their lives.
I think people would agree that where her own children are concerned, Sheehan is very caring and protective.
I plan to post you're letter at my blog. Since it references Sheehan's columns, I will also link to them. That is seen by bloggers as being fair to readers. They can see both sides and make up their own minds.
Yes, that will give Sheehan a wider audience and inevitably some will cheer her on.
But most people I hear from at my blog are intelligent and fair. I have a pretty strong idea about what they'll think of Sheehan's columns and your letter.
Thank you for writing such a powerful and important letter. I admire you for being able to do so in these circumstances.
I can't help but think of Tawana Brawley. Which may be unfair to the young lady, but something just doesn't fit. Will wait and see.
You can read that woman's letter and guess what kind of son she raised.
More MSM swing-and-a-miss reporting.
Saturday, June 10, 2006
Posted by JWM at 7:35 PM
Here’s part of an email a friend sent :
Let’s start off with today’s N&O (Jun. 9). Their front page, above-the-fold headline:Zarqawi did play the MSM like a drum. And after his death reporter Sly, the Chicago Tribune, and the Raleigh News & Observer teamed up to do a little more drum beating for him.“But Zarqawi’s death was a rare moment of triumph [my emphasis] for the U.S. military, dogged by allegations of misconduct and the relentless pace of insurgent attacks over the past three years.”A “rare moment of triumph?” That’s certainly what the MSM wants you to believe, that the insurgents (terrorists to most of us who don’t live in MSM-land) are winning. […]
The terrorists aren’t winning, either in Iraq or in Afghanistan. And if the recent arrests in Canada, the UK, Switzerland and the US are any indication, they aren’t winning outside of the ummah either.
Zarqawi played the MSM like a drum. If the MSM has its way, Zarqawi will soon be the next Ché Guevara—another sadistic, vicious, cold-blooded, fascist mass murder recently rehabilitated in Robert Redford’s The Motorcycle Diaries. […]
The U. S. military had “a rare moment of triumph” is exactly the message Zarqawi would want the American public to take from his death.
With that message received and believed, Americans are set up to endorse the “cut and run” from Iraq strategy many liberals and all leftists and terrorists want us to adopt.
But it's a false message. Just read blogs such as Mudville Gazette and Blackfive if you doubt that.
It’s terrible that reporter Liz Sly and some of her fellow journalists at the Chicago Tribune and Raleigh N&O would use the occasion of Zarqawi's death to deliver the terrorists' message.
Posted by JWM at 12:22 PM
Friday morning I went to a high school graduation where I knew a number of the graduates.
The graduates lined up and began to process as a school music group played "Pomp and Circumstance."
I got misty. I always do at that point.
In some future year I plan to go to a graduation at a school where I don't know a soul. I'll see if I mist there.
I'm betting I will.
And I'm betting a lot of you would mist with me if you were there, and didn't know a soul either.
And it's good that we mist, even cry, isn't it?
Posted by JWM at 10:12 AM
Friday, June 09, 2006
(One of a series of weekday posts on the life of Winston S. Churchill.)
Churchill had his critics. One was Field Marshal Alan Brooke (later Lord Alanbrooke), Chief of the Imperial General Staff for most of WW II.
Brooke kept a diary during the war. Here are some of historian Christopher Harmon's comments on aspects of it concerning the Churchill-Alanbrooke relationship.
Another reason for (his) criticism of Churchill is high-minded and strategic, if not necessarily correct. Alanbrooke felt that this admittedly-great man had no strategy; as late as December 1941, when Alanbrooke became C.I.G.S., he remained "appalled" by the "lack of a definite policy....Planned strategy was not Winston's strong card. He preferred to work by intuition and impulse."Alanbrooke, by the way, was an avid birder and photographer. Shortly after he returned to England from the Casablanca Conference he called a staff officer into his office. The officer was expecting to hear of war plans; instead he was shown photo of a bird which Alanbrooke said was "quite rare really. I was very lucky."
Proving he does possess a sense of humor, Alanbrooke twice formulates the problem as antithesis: "God knows where we would be without him, but God knows where we shall go with him," says an entry for 1941. Three years hence he writes: "Without him England was lost for a certainty, with him England has been on the verge of disaster time and again." […]
What Alanbrooke never adds to such accounts of conference room combat is that Churchill would never overrule the Chiefs of Staff when they agreed among themselves. Arguing, testing and debating were part of proper civilian oversight. Alanbrooke missed the point. He thought he was saving Britain from wild variants of hare-brained strategies.
Alanbrooke's diaries are remarkably silent about most of the many things these two war horses agreed about. Both believed Germany must be defeated before Japan. Both emphasized Mediterranean operations, where British and Allied troops retook North Africa, Sicily, and southern Italy.
Both felt in 1943 and 1944 that Alexander's army in Italy was neglected and condemned to fighting without real offensive power by various Pacific ventures and the unnecessary plan to invade southern France (Dragoon). Both believed in what is today called "joint warfare," and pushed air power.[…]
Christopher Harmon, "Churchill and Alanbrooke." Finest Hour (No. 112)
We keep hearing how “privileged” the Duke Men’s lacrosse players are.
So what are their privileges?
Well, N. C. Superior Court Judge Ronald Stephens, Durham DA Mike Nifong, the Durham Police Department and an exotic dancer all worked together to make sure the lacrosse players were given DNA testing by the DPD.
And it looks like a lot of “exceptions” were made so the players could get their DNA testing.
I mean, who believes the treatment the players received from police, Nifong and Stephens is the same kind of treatment they give ordinary citizens every day?
You don’t believe that, do you?
The DPD also took mug shot photos of all 46 white players on the team stripped to their waists and with their arms extended.
That’s something I can’t recall the DPD ever doing for any another group, not even the Durham City Council.
But I can tell you this: Many citizens don’t like what they’re hearing about the “privileges” accorded the Duke lacrosse players.
That’s because the “privileges” don’t seem at all like privileges.
They seem to intelligent and fair-minded citizens more like parts of a grave miscarriage of justice in which some people in authority colluded and misled others, including the public.
It will be very interesting to learn what Judge Stephens thinks now that he knows much more than he knew when he issued his order for the players to submit to DNA testing.
Let’s hope Stephens doesn’t keep the public waiting too long.
Meanwhile, has anyone heard anything from DA Nifong lately?
Posted by JWM at 10:29 PM
I'll resume posting about 9 p.m. tonight.
Thank you to a number of you who are linking JinC Duke lacrosse posts to Court TV and other blog sites.
I appreciate the traffic you drive here but what I really appreciate is the affirmation in your passing on JinC posts.
Posted by JWM at 2:22 PM
We’re starting to learn about important evidence suggesting the Duke lacrosse players are innocent. We’re also learning that Durham DA Mike Nifong and the Durham Police withheld much of that evidence from the courts and the public.
With that in mind I hope you’ll take a look at a post by attorney Jonna Spilbor, a legal analyst on Fox News Channel's Weekend Live with Brian Wilson and frequent guest commentator on Court-TV. Spilbor’s a noted criminal defense attorney who’s also served in the San Diego City Attorney's Office, Criminal Division, and the Office of the United States Attorney in the Drug Task Force and Appellate units.
Spilbor commented at Findlaw.com on the Duke lacrosse case, including some statements and actions of Durham DA Mike Nifong.
When you read her comments, keep this in mind: Spilbor made them exactly 8 weeks ago today on April 14. Excerpts:
In the absence of DNA, (Nifong) should, indeed, drop the case - both because the evidence strongly indicates the players' innocence, and because it means he will never be able to prove their guilt.We're learning how Nifong discharged his obligation regarding evidence.
The D.A.'s written request for a court order to obtain those forty-six DNA samples stated that DNA testing would provide "conclusive evidence" as to which three lacrosse players allegedly assaulted the accuser.
This phrasing poses a compelling question: If DNA can be considered convincing evidence of guilt in sex crimes, as the DA himself argues, shouldn't the absence of DNA evidence provide equally convincing proof of innocence?
D.A. Nifong argues, instead, that the lack of DNA "doesn't mean nothing happened. It just means nothing was left behind." He has pointed out, in addition, that rape prosecutions can go forward - and convictions can result - without DNA evidence. According to Nifong, in 75 to 80 percent of all sexual assault cases, there is no DNA to analyze.
But those cases aren't like this one - for several reasons.
Why, In This Case In Particular, the Absence of DNA Indicates Innocence
Often, women do not report sex crimes for days or weeks - washing much, or all, of the DNA evidence down the drain long before police and prosecutors can collect it. But not in this case. Here, the victim submitted to a "rape kit" examination only hours after what she said was the time of the alleged attack.
Often, rape is accomplished by fear, not force. But in this case, the crime alleged was brutal and barbaric. The accuser said, for instance, that her acrylic fingernails were torn off as she tried to defend herself.
And often, an attacker will use a condom precisely to destroy the chance that he will be caught via DNA. But here, the alleged victim made no mention of any of her attackers using a condom. (Also, while a condom might prevent organic DNA from being deposited on or around the accuser, it would have left its own trace evidence, especially if coated with spermicide. Here, it appears that no such evidence was found.)
For all these reasons, it seems very unlikely that if the attack alleged occurred, none of the attackers' DNA would have been collected from the accused's body or clothing - or from underneath her fingernails.
D.A. Nifong has pointed out that the accusers' clothing could have protected them - but their hands, face, and necks likely remained exposed. What is the chance that the accuser would not have made contact with any of their hands, faces or necks if a brutal attack truly occurred? […]
The D.A. Should Look at Exculpatory, Not Just Inculpatory, Evidence
The District Attorney has an obligation, prior to charging anyone with a crime here, to examine all the evidence procured per the investigation, both inculpatory and exculpatory. […]
Spilbor went on to consider the question of whether the accuser has been lying.
In this particular case, it seems that evidence of the accused's innocence equates to evidence of the accuser's lie.When you read the rest of Spilbor’s column, you’ll see she didn’t anticipate everything that’s developed in the past 8 weeks.
If so, one would hope the Durham prosecutor would do an about- face - pursuing charges against this accuser with the same fervor he is exhibiting in his efforts to prove her a victim.
But why would the accuser lie? Bill Thomas, a defense attorney for one of the team captains, has offered one possible reason - he believes she was trying to avoid a charge of public drunkenness. He's stated, "It is my sincere hope that she comes forward and tells the truth in this matter and allows these young men to go on with their lives and for this community to heal."
Let's hope that if he is right, and the accuser is lying, the D.A. recognizes that before the case goes any further.
But Spilbor sure had a lot right, including the most important thing that the rest of us are learning only now: Nifong didn’t have a case on April 14.
Today sensible people in Durham have to ask why Nifong persisted with the case?
And why did Nifong so seriously mislead the courts and the community regarding evidence?
And what should be the consequences for Nifong?
I hope the courts and state bar association address those questions.
I also hope some politically active Durham citizens, including attorneys, look at what’s involved in organizing a campaign to support a write-in candidate for Durham DA in November’s elections.
Who in Durham wants to face 4 years with Nifong as DA?
Posted by JWM at 12:08 PM
(Welcome visitors from Court TV. I post often on the Duke lacrosse case, including media coverage.)
Yesterday was a very bad day for DA Nifong and the Durham Police but it may turn out to be a very important day for people who only want justice to be done in the Duke lacrosse case.
From today's Durham Herald Sun:
Officer's 'omissions' targeted in lacrosse motionThe H-S story begins:
The exotic dancer who has accused three Duke lacrosse players of gang-raping her was drinking while taking medication that night, and had sex with at least four men and a sexual device in the days immediately leading up to the off-campus party, according to court papers filed Thursday.There's more and I'm sure you'll read it all.
And despite what Durham police have contended, a medical examination showed no signs of the sort of sexual or physical attack of which the dancer complained, according to the motion filed by defense attorneys for Reade Seligmann.
Among other previously undisclosed details, the motion says the woman at one point accused her female dance partner of helping the lacrosse players rape her and of stealing her money. [...]
Lawyers Kirk Osborn and Ernest Conner contend in the motion that police Investigator Benjamin Himan and the Police Department illegally and deliberately withheld those and other details that were damaging to their investigation.(bold added)
For example, they say, Himan knew but did not mention in a probable-cause affidavit that two examining physicians said the dancer complained only of vaginal rape, even though some charges in the case are linked to allegations of oral and anal penetration.
Himan also neglected to note that the accuser told one doctor she was not hit and did not complain of any pain, or that she told the sexual assault nurse examiner she was not choked, according to the documents.
That conflicts with statements from police that the woman was kicked, strangled and beaten while being sexually assaulted.
Police officials wouldn't respond Thursday to questions about the documents.
"The Durham Police Department is not commenting on any specifics of the Duke lacrosse case," said police spokeswoman Kammie Michael.
The defense lawyers say the omitted information is critical to the case. Had it been included, they contend, police may not have gotten permission to perform a photo lineup that led to charges against three team members. [...]
What we're learning now fits with many posts you've read here. For example, "Duke lacrosse and bathroom safety," pointed out the impossibility of a gang-rape occurring in a bathroom and an alleged resisting victim and her alleged attackers not being injured in the process. It also asked why the alleged attackers would take a woman they were planning to rape to a bathroom instead of one of the house's three bedrooms.
A lot more questions need to be asked, but first a few words for those who'll be saying "this is coming from a defense attorney and they're supposed to say whatever helps their clients."
Everything in Osborn's filings he secured from Nifong's office. That includes DPD material some or all of which could be wrong.
OK, but if it is, than where's the accuser's case?
And remember this: some of the material most damaging to Nifong's prosecution/persecution comes from Duke Medical Center records.
Why did DA Nifong withhold facts we're just learning now? Is that accepted procedure for a North Carolina District Attorney? What will the court say when it learns Nifong withheld the medical records from it?
The H-S reports:
If Himan had been forthcoming in an affidavit seeking the lineup March 23, (the attorneys say, Superior Court Judge Ron Stephens would have had no legal basis for allowing the photographic identification procedure in the first place.Many weeks ago I said we should be calling this the Mike Nifong case.
It's reasonable today for everyone, especially well-intended people who once thought the players guilty of a gang-rape, to ask Nifong to explain to the community just what he did and why.
And it's reasonable to ask what courts and the North Carolina State Bar Association will say about what Nifong has done.
Yesterday, Nifong had no comment.
But he's a public official and an officer of the court sworn to uphold justice. Nifong needs to tell the public and the courts what he's done. It's the least he owes people who care about justice.
Betsy Newmark has an excellent post on all of this. I'm sure there will be others today and I'll update here this afternoon.
Meanwhile, say a quiet thank you, even a prayer, to our founders who passed to us such wonderful legal standards as presumption of innocence, accusation is not proof of guilt, and it is for that accuser to prove the charges.
The Herald-Sun article is here.
Posted by JWM at 7:32 AM
Thursday, June 08, 2006
At today’s White House press briefing, Tony Snow did a little teaching when a press corps member asked the sort of question that’s brought the corps into such low public esteem.
QUESTION: Let me ask you this, because I suppose another way of looking at this is if somebody hadn't flipped, if somebody hadn't tipped off everybody, Zarqawi would not have been targeted. So a lot of this is dependent on another terrorist, perhaps, wanting to see Zarqawi dead so that they could move into the created vacuum.Nice lesson, Tony. I hope the reporter learned something.
TONY SNOW: That would be a really stupid terrorist, because the life expectancy of people who have been succeeding these guys, and the life expectancy of being Zarqawi's number two has not been very good. So if somebody was trying to tip off Zarqawi in sort of a Machiavellian attempt to re-jigger things, I think they ought to think twice because what is happening -- and we've seen this and we've heard reports of it, but I think this dramatizes it -- the Iraqi people are saying, we've had it with these guys. We've had it. We're not going to take it anymore. And that is an important step. And this is the kind of thing that can reinforce those who want to go ahead and stand up against terror in their midst.
Hat Tip: Greg Sheffield
Posted by JWM at 6:27 PM
One of America's most respected jurists, U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Richard A. Posner is also the author of "Uncertain Shield: The U.S. Intelligence System in the Throes of Reform." He’s looked at the arrests in Toronto and sees a danger to America’s security that needs to be dealt with now :
The terrorist arrests in Toronto this week have revealed a gap in the U.S. intelligence system. The arrests were made by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, but the plot had been discovered by surveillance conducted by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, a different kind of security organization that our media have dubbed Canada's "spy agency." That is true, but misleading.Judge Posner addresses objections that have been raised to proposals to create an American counterpart to CSIS or MI5. He then concludes:
When we think of a spy agency, we think of the CIA, which conducts foreign intelligence. CSIS, however, conducts only domestic intelligence. It corresponds to England's security intelligence agency, commonly known as MI5, and to similar agencies in almost all major countries other than the United States. Such agencies are not in the law enforcement business. They have no powers of arrest or prosecution. Their sole mission is to detect and foil terrorism, sabotage, espionage and other internal threats to national security. […]
In the U.S., domestic intelligence is primarily the responsibility of the FBI. Canada took the same approach until 1984. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Canada's counterpart to the FBI, had a division called the Security Service that dealt with national security threats. But in that year the service was removed from the Mounties and made a separate domestic intelligence agency, CSIS.
Why split domestic intelligence from criminal investigation?
Because these activities differ so profoundly that trying to combine them into one agency causes underperformance of both. A crime has a definite locus in time and space, a characteristic profile (it's a bank robbery, or credit-card fraud, etc.), physical evidence, witnesses and often suspects. These circumstances enable a tightly focused investigation that usually leads in a reasonably short time to an arrest, prosecution, conviction and sentence.
National security intelligence does not operate with such a clear path to success, especially when confronting a terrorist threat. For then the main objective is to discover who and where the terrorists are, what their plans and capabilities are, who finances them and what links they have with other terrorist networks.
Obtaining such information is a laborious, painstaking and frustrating process, full of dead ends and wrong turnings. It is uncongenial activity for an agency, such as the FBI, that is primarily oriented toward conventional criminal investigations.
This is not just a theoretical point. Experience both before and after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, reveals an FBI that has stumbled repeatedly in its efforts, as yet unachieved, at "transformational" change. […]
The Toronto arrests should be a wake-up call to Americans.Immense damage can also be done to America from at least two other sources: 1) Those who in the name of civil liberties would prevent the creation of the type of agency Posner proposes; and 2) Those in such an agency and media who would grant themselves the right to disclose agency operations whenever they felt disclosure was necessary.
We knew from the London transit bombings of last summer that a nation's citizens can be recruited for terrorism, but we were reassured by the fact that England like other European countries has a large, poorly integrated, radicalized Muslim minority, surely unlike the Muslim minorities in Canada or the United States.
We have to rethink this comfortable assumption, at least insofar as Canada is concerned. Canada has approximately 600,000 Muslims, most of whom (like most other Canadians) live very close to Canada's largely unguarded 4,000--mile border with us. The United States has an estimated 2 million Muslims.
The vast majority of North American Muslims are loyal; and even among those who hate our governments and way of life only a tiny minority would ever turn terrorist. But that tiny minority could do immense damage, against which our best protection is a well-designed system of domestic intelligence--something we do not have.
Posner’s article is here.
Posted by JWM at 5:46 PM
The AP reports:
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the most-wanted terrorist in Iraq who waged a bloody campaign of beheadings and suicide bombings, was killed when U.S. warplanes dropped 500-pound bombs on his isolated safehouse, officials said Thursday.It would have been more correct for the AP to report:
“…when U. S. warplanes dropped 500-pound bombs on what al-Zarqawi thought was his isolated safehouse.”Anyway, well done and thanks to everyone who helped take out al-Zarqawi.
I hope Osama watches the news tonight.
Posted by JWM at 12:15 PM
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
(One of a series of weekday posts on the life of Winston S. Churchill.)
Here’s an amusing Churchill anecdote, the authenticity of which I doubt.
It’s 1900 and Churchill, then twenty-six, is in Washington, D.C., where he delivered a lecture and later was guest at a reception where has met a very well-endowed woman.
The woman let Churchill know she was from the South and wished the Confederacy had won the Civil War.
"Mr. Churchill, you see before you a rebel who has not been Reconstructed."”Madam,” he is supposed to have replied, “in your case reconstruction would be blasphemy.”
Now did he say that or something like it?
I’ve looked through Martin Gilbert’s Churchill and America and can’t find it there.
Yes, you find it in many of the Churchill’s “wit” books, but it’s always unsourced.
I’d love to confirm the remark. It sure sounds like Churchill, doesn’t it?
Can anyone help?
If someone can find a confirming source, I'll reconstruct this post.
Most of you know Alex Charns, attorney for one of the unindicted Duke lacrosse players, has requested documents and an investigation regarding the authorization, production and distribution of at least two Durham CrimeStoppers posters/flyers regarding the Duke lacrosse case.
Someone just coming on the story can go here and here for background.
After reading Durham Police Major Lee Russ’ letter responding to Charns’ email, I have a lot of questions about what Russ says.
Below is Russ' letter with some of my questions placed interlinear and in italics.
Attorney Alex Charns
Charns & Charns Attorneys at Law
Post Office Box 59
Durham, NC 27702
Dear Attorney Charns:
I am in receipt of your email sent Thursday, May 18, 2006 to City Manager Patrick Baker and copied to Chief Steven Chalmers.
Pursuant to your request, enclosed are copies of all press releases produced by the City of Durham and the Durham Police Department concerning the crime alleged to have occurred at 610 N. Buchanan Boulevard on or about March 13, 2006.
[If I understood Charns right, he only got one document from Russ. The text of that document is here and identified as Document three.
I plan to contact Russ tomorrow, Thursday, to find out if he sent other CrimeStoppers documents. I’ll let you know what I learn.]
It is our understanding that posters containing allegations by the accuser and photos of members of the Duke lacrosse team were distributed on Duke's campus by a source unknown to us.
[ Those may be what I’ve been calling the “vigilante poster,” a photo of which was published by The N&O, and a photo of which or of a very similar poster appears on the USA Today website.]
In addition, a solicitation for information was produced by the Durham Crimestoppers Coordinator.
[ The Coordinator’s name? Is the “Coordinator” Cpl. David Addison , the Durham Police officer assigned to work full-time with Crimestoppers? Cpl. Addison is listed as the CrimeStoppers contact on the poster and flyers about which Charns is concerned and which is referenced here as Document three.]
Crimestoppers is an independent nonprofit organization that offers cash awards for information leading to arrests in criminal activities alleged to have occurred.
[In that case, who is answering questions for Crimestoppers regarding decisions to produce and distribute what Russ calls a “solicitation of information?”
Russ speaks of “criminal activities alleged to have occurred.” But the “solicitation” speaks of crimes.
Who at Crimestoppers decided crimes of rape, sodomy, etc. had been committed at 610 N Buchanan on the night of Mar. 13/14? And how did they decide? Also, who authorized a cash award in the Duke lacrosse case?
I’ve called CrimeStoppers on four consecutive days, some days more than once, and never got anything but a VM message to leave a message or a referral to Cpl. Addison who didn’t return my calls.
I plan to ask Russ to help me talk to people at CrimeStoppers. My understanding from reading some CrimeStoppers’ minutes on the web is that it has a board of directors. which would make sense for an independent nonprofit organization which solicits funds from the public.]
When the solicitation for information was brought to the attention of the Police Department, given the degree of media coverage, questions, debates and community tensions already surrounding this matter, we felt that a less strongly worded request would he preferable.
[ By “we” I assume Russ means someone (s) acting on behalf of DPD. Who was that?
Has anyone at DPD said what it was in the original “solicitation” that DPD “felt (should be) less strongly worded?”
Again, questions for Russ.]
Therefore, I contacted the Crimestoppers Coordinator and the solicitation for information was immediately amended as evidenced by copies of the enclosed emails.
[ I’d like to find copies and share them with you. ]
We recently became aware that the originally drafted Crimestoppers' request for information was copied by a member of our agency using a Durham Police Department header.
[The “w” questions come to mind. Who? Where? When? Why?]
However, just as this issue was promptly addressed when it first came to our attention almost two months ago, appropriate actions will he taken by the Durham Police Department to ensure that information distributed by or associated with the Department is effective, accurate and sensitive to the community we serve.
[That’s all good to hear but I don’t see anything in Russ’ letter that really explains how Crimestoppers came to produce and distribute the “solicitation” DPD later came to feel should be “less strongly worded.”
Enough for now except for this: I'm told everything the Durham CrimeStoppers does is supposed to be public knowledge, including what the DPD do coordinating with CrimeStoppers.
If that's wrong someone let me know.
Meanwhile, I’ll keep you posted.
Major Lee Russ
Office of the Chief
cc: Patrick Baker, City Manager
Steven Chalmers, Chief of Police
Ronald Hodge, Deputy Chief of Police
A Nationally Accredited Law Enforcement Agency
Posted by JWM at 11:09 PM
Many of you know Alex Charns, attorney for one of the unindicted Duke lacrosse players, has requested documents and an investigation regarding the authorization, production and distribution of at least two Durham CrimeStoppers posters/flyers regarding the Duke lacrosse case.
If you are not familiar with Charns' actions on behalf of his client this post, "Duke lacrosse: What about the posters?" and this one, "Duke lacrosse: CrimeStoppers poster questions," provide background information concerning the document texts which follow.
I'm sorry I can't offer readers photo facsimiles of the documents. Two came in PDF photo form and even with help of tech savvy friends I couldn't produce facsimiles in Word form. As we get to each document, I’ll say something about its form.
First document: Charns' email to Durham City Manager Patrick Baker requesting Durham City and Durham Police Department records and a DPD investigation into the production and distribution of CrimeStoppers posters and flyers regarding the Duke lacrosse case.
Sent: Thursday, May 18, 2006 7:35 AM
Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
Subject: Public Records Request and Request for an Investigation into
DPD Duke lacrosse posters
This is a Public Records Act (N.C.G.S Sec. 132-1 et seq.) request as well as
a call for an Internal Affairs or city manager investigation.
I have been made aware of a Durham Police Department poster offering cash
for “assistance in solving this [Duke lacrosse team] case” that impugned the
entire lacrosse team with its assertion that “The victim was sodomized,
raped, assaulted and robbed. This horrific crime sent shock waves
throughout our community.” It is my understanding that these were posted
around the Duke campus and adjoining neighborhoods.
I request certified copies of all city of Durham and Durham Police
Department press releases or posters concerning the Duke lacrosse alleged
rape investigation. This requests includes all e-mail, drafts, memos and
chain-of-command authorizations, if any, for these posters. The search
locations should include computers and files at the police department, Risk
Management Department, and the Office of the City Manager.
I ask you, as an attorney and as a city leader, how is that our police force
offered to pay money to anonymous witnesses in order to solve a crime that
it claimed to know for a fact had occurred? What happened to investigating
a crime before a blanket accusation of guilt is made? Wasn’t it “Alice in
Wonderland” in which the verdict came before the trial, and the accuser
acted as judge and jury?
I further request that an investigation be conducted into whether the Duke
lacrosse rape allegation posters were in keeping with the General Orders,
Rules and Regulations of the Durham Police Department, and whether they were
authorized by the city and the department.
I appreciate your prompt response to these requests. I make these requests
directly to you (copy to the Chief) as it appeared from press reports that
the Police Chief was not in a position to respond in a timely manner due to
other business, and you had been investigating the police response in this
M. Alexander Charns
Charns & Charns Attorneys at Law
Alexander Charns - D. Tucker Charns
123 Orange Street, P.O. Box 59
Durham, N.C. 27702
Readers Note: To the best of my knowledge and consistent with press reports, Chief of Police Steve Chalmers has not been seen publicly since the Duke lacrosse story broke. Citizens have been told he is attending his mother who is gravely ill.
Second document: The text of a letter DPD Major Lee Russ wrote on behalf of DPD to Charns. The letter was on DPD letterhead.
In his letter Russ states he is enclosing "copies of all press releases produced by the City of Durham and the Durham Police Department concerning the crime alleged to have occurred at 610 N. Buchanan Boulevard on or about March 13, 2006." Charns' tells me he received from Russ only one document, the text of which follows Russ's letter.
The body of Russ' letter was a single paragraph as presented here.
Attorney Alex Charns
Charns & Charns Attorneys at Law
Post Office Box 59
Durham, NC 27702
Dear Attorney Charns:
I am in receipt of your email sent Thursday, May 18, 2006 to City Manager Patrick Baker and copied to Chief Steven Chalmers. Pursuant to your request, enclosed are copies of all press releases produced by the City of Durham and the Durham Police Department concerning the crime alleged to have occurred at 610 N. Buchanan Boulevard on or about March 13, 2006. It is our understanding that posters containing allegations by the accuser and photos of members of the Duke lacrosse team were distributed on Duke's campus by a source unknown to us. In addition, a solicitation for information was produced by the Durham Crimestoppers Coordinator. Crimestoppers is an independent nonprofit organization that offers cash awards for information leading to arrests in criminal activities alleged to have occurred. When the solicitation for information was brought to the attention of the Police Department, given the degree of media coverage, questions, debates and community tensions already surrounding this matter, we felt that a less strongly worded request would he preferable. Therefore, I contacted the Crimestoppers Coordinator and the solicitation for information was immediately amended as evidenced by copies of the enclosed emails. We recently became aware that the originally drafted Crimestoppers' request for information was copied by a member of our agency using a Durham Police Department header. However, just as this issue was promptly addressed when it first came to our attention almost two months ago, appropriate actions will he taken by the Durham Police Department to ensure that information distributed by or associated with the Department is effective, accurate and sensitive to the community we serve.
Major Lee Russ
Office of the Chief
cc: Patrick Baker, City Manager
Steven Chalmers, Chief of Police
Ronald Hodge, Deputy Chief of Police
A Nationally Accredited Law Enforcement Agency
Third document: The text below followed a header with Durham Police Department in large letters superimposed against a background that included a police officer's shield, the Durham skyline, and the Durham City logo.
On Monday, March 13,2006 about 11:00pm, the Duke University Lacrosse Team solicited a local escort service for entertainment. The victim was paid to dance at the residence located at 610 Buchanan. The Duke Lacrosse Team was hosting a party at the residence. The victim was sodomized, raped, assaulted and robbed. This horrific crime sent shock waves throughout our community. Durham Police needs your assistance in solving this case. We are asking anyone who has any information related to this case, please contact lnv. Himan at 560-4582 x229._
Information can also be provided anonymously through Durham CrimeStoppers at 683-1200 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org (Please use an anonymous email account). Durham CrimeStoppers will pay cash for any information which leads to an arrest in this case.
Posted by JWM at 8:39 PM
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
(One of a series of weekday posts on the life of Winston S. Churchill.)
On June 6, 1944 Churchill spoke to the House of Commons. He paid tribute first to those who had just help liberate Rome on June 4/5.
Then he moved on to the D-Day landings. Only in a formal sense were his remarks about the landings an "announcement." The people alread knew. They'd watched 6,000 ships sail from its shoure in the two preceding days. They'd heard thousands of planes fly overhead during the night. They understood why their High Streets and villege parks which only a few days before swarmed with troops were now deserted.
The House should, I think, take formal cognisance of the liberation of Rome by the Allied Armies under the Command of General Alexander, with General Clark of the United States Service and General Oliver Leese in command of the fifth and Eighth Armies respectively.I hope you read Churchill entire address to the Commons which you can find here thanks to The Churchill Centre.
This is a memorable and glorious event, which rewards the intense fighting of the last five months in Italy. The original landing, made on January 22nd at Anzio, has, in the end, borne good fruit. [...]
It would be futile to attempt to estimate our final gains at the present time. It is our duty, however, to pay the warmest tribute of gratitude and admiration to General Alexander for the skill with which he has handled this Army of so many different States and nations, and for the tenacity and fortitude with which he has sustained the long periods when success was denied. [...]
I have also to announce to the House that during the night and the early hours of this morning the first of the series of landings in force upon the European Continent has taken place. In this case the liberating assault fell upon the coast of France.
An immense armada of upwards of 4,000 ships, together with several thousand smaller craft, crossed the Channel. Massed airborne landings have been successfully effected behind the enemy lines, and landings on the beaches are proceeding at various points at the present time. The fire of the shore batteries has been largely quelled. The obstacles that were constructed in the sea have not proved so difficult as was apprehended. [...]
This vast operation is undoubtedly the most complicated and difficult that has ever taken place. It involves tides, wind, waves, visibility, both from the air and the sea standpoint, and the combined employment of land, air and sea forces in the highest degree of intimacy and in contact with conditions which could not and cannot be fully foreseen. [...]
There are already hopes that actual tactical surprise has been attained, and we hope to furnish the enemy with a succession of surprises during the course of the fighting. The battle that has now begun will grow constantly in scale and in intensity for many weeks to come, and I shall not attempt to speculate upon its course. [...]
But all this, although a very valuable first step-a vital and essential first step-gives no indication of what may be the course of the battle in the next days and weeks, because the enemy will now probably endeavour to concentrate on this area, and in that event heavy fighting will soon begin and will continue without end, as we can push troops in and he can bring other troops up.
It is, therefore, a most serious time that we enter upon. Thank God, we enter upon it with our great Allies all in good heart and all in good friendship.
For those of you who are following this story this:
I'm putting together material I've gotten from the exec. asst. to Durham City Manager Patrick Baker; from Alex Charns, attorney for one of the unindicted Duke lacrosse players: and via copy from Charns a letter he received from Major Lee Russ of the Durham City Police Department.
It will take a while to do that/
Look for news tomorrow.
Posted by JWM at 9:56 PM
That's the London Times which headed its editorial:
The wrong targetSorry if my post title led you to wonder even for an instant whether the New York Times expressed such sentiments.
Terrorism, not America, is a real and present threat to our freedoms
Of course, it didn't.
The London Times' editorial begins :
Al-Haditha, a town on the Euphrates northwest of Baghdad, is still a place where fighters blend into the populace and literally use civilians as cover. Coalition forces may shoot only when threatened, ground rules that call for exemplary discipline and courage in conditions where their observance increases the risk of injury or death.Whether you're politically left, center or right, you'd never expect to read anything like what you've just read in a NY Times editorial, would you?
That should be acknowledged in the context of what appears to have been an appalling collapse of US military discipline in al-Haditha, where 24 Iraqi civilians were allegedly murdered by a company of US Marines after a member of their patrol was killed and two were injured by a roadside bomb.
America’s determination to demonstrate zero tolerance of such crimes should also be acknowledged; they in no way reflect US policy, or typify the conduct of American forces. Al-Haditha must not be made the subplot of a spurious morality play whose demon king is not terrorism, but the use and alleged abuse of US power. (bold added)
There's no Bush-bashing, no "Rumsfeld is responsible," nothing about "our out of control military," and certainly no cries of "America's shame."
In fact, the London Times editorial is downright admiring of America, isn't it?
Its editorial continues :
America-bashing is in fashion as it has not been since Ronald Reagan accurately described the Soviet Union as an “evil empire”. Anti-Americanism is not confined to the usual radical chic suspects of the Left; in Britain, it infects the High Tory Establishment, “good Europeans” and little Englanders alike. So why are we all anti-Americans now? [...]The Times overstates it when it asks: "So why are we all anti-Americans now?"
Not all British people are anti-American. In fact, a lot of those I meet in the UK when I visit there about twice a year are outright pro-American. They think Britain’s future is tied closely to America's.
Now, for sure, that's not the way most UK journalists and Church of England deans to say nothing of almost all formally educated academic anti-Semites think.
And such people and others like them may well constitute a majority in the UK.
But it's worth remembering there are many people in the UK who don't bash America and, in fact, admire it.
It will be such people there and elsewhere who will help win the fight for civilization.
The rest of the London Times editorial is here.
If you read it, I'd love to know what you think.
Posted by JWM at 9:09 PM
Scripps Howard war correspondent Ernie Pyle was on Omaha Beach when he wrote the column which follows. He titled it:“A Pure Miracle.” It was published in America on June 12, 1944.
In this column I want to tell you what the opening of the second front in this one sector entailed, so that you can know and appreciate and forever be humbly grateful to those both dead and alive who did it for you.Sixty-two years later Pyle’s column continues to help us “know and appreciate and forever be humbly grateful to those both dead and alive who did it for you.”
Ashore, facing us, were more enemy troops than we had in our assault waves. The advantages were all theirs, the disadvantages all ours. The Germans were dug into positions that they had been working on for months, although these were not yet all complete.
A one-hundred-foot bluff a couple of hundred yards back from the beach had great concrete gun emplacements built right into the hilltop. These opened to the sides instead of to the front, thus making it very hard for naval fire from the sea to reach them. They could shoot parallel with the beach and cover every foot of it for miles with artillery fire.
Then they had hidden machine-gun nests on the forward slopes, with crossfire taking in every inch of the beach. These nests were connected by networks of trenches, so that the German gunners could move about without exposing themselves.
Throughout the length of the beach, running zigzag a couple of hundred yards back from the shoreline, was an immense V-shaped ditch fifteen feet deep. Nothing could cross it, not even men on foot, until fills had been made.
And in other places at the far end of the beach, where the ground is flatter, they had great concrete walls. These were blasted by our naval gunfire or by explosives set by hand after we got ashore.
Our only exits from the beach were several swales or valleys, each about one hundred yards wide. The Germans made the most of these funnel-like traps, sowing them with buried mines. They contained, also, barbed-wire entanglements with mines attached, hidden ditches, and machine guns firing from the slopes.
This is what was on the shore.
But our men had to go through a maze nearly as deadly as this before they even got ashore. Underwater obstacles were terrific. The Germans had whole fields of evil devices under the water to catch our boats.
Even now, several days after the landing, we have cleared only channels through them and cannot yet approach the whole length of the beach with our ships. Even now some ship or boat hits one of these mines every day and is knocked out of commission.
The Germans had masses of those great six-pronged spiders, made of railroad iron and standing shoulder-high, just beneath the surface of the water for our landing craft to run into. They also had huge logs buried in the sand, pointing upward and outward, their tops just below the water. Attached to these logs were mines.
In addition to these obstacles they had floating mines offshore, land mines buried in the sand of the beach, and more mines in checkerboard rows in the tall grass beyond the sand. And the enemy had four men on shore for every three men we had approaching the shore.
And yet we got on.
Pyle would think it appropriate if we honored in memory and with actions not just the men and women of D-Day but all those who’ve defended America in times of war and their loved ones too.
Posted by JWM at 2:58 PM
Monday, June 05, 2006
Sunday, June 04, 2006
Remember the post: “Duke lacrosse letter: So bad it's a good sign for the indicted?”
It concerned a letter the Raleigh N&O published from N. C. NAACP’s Legal Redress Chair, attorney Al McSurely, responding to a column by the NY Times’ David Brooks in which Brooks said in part:
[S]imple decency requires that we return to that scandal, if only to correct the slurs that were uttered by millions of people, including me. …Here's how McSurely responded to that:
[Law journalist] Stuart Taylor has written a devastating couple of essays on the weak case of the prosecutor, Mike Nifong [citing] lack of DNA evidence, the seemingly exculpatory digital photos and the testimony of a taxi driver.
Brooks conceded the team is "mostly white" (46 out of 47). He cited favorably a National Journal essay that estimated "an 85 percent chance" the men are innocent.McSurely’s words no doubt tell us more than he intended.
Brooks speaks at this summer's National Conservative Student Conference. Look for the students at this right-wing Republican recruiting ground to express support for the right's new heroes: "The Duke 3."
Of course, "Brooks conceded the team is 'mostly white,'" just as Brooks would concede the teams at N.C. Central University are “mostly black.”
What’s McSurely doing besides dealing N&O readers a race card?
Does anyone think McSurely’s "mostly white" has anything to do with what he wants us to believe his letter is all about: Justice?
And look at how McSurely treated Brooks’ remarks about Stuart Taylor.
All McSurely said in reference to Taylor is:
[Brooks] cited favorably a National Journal essay that estimated "an 85 percent chance" the men are innocent.But we all know what Brooks actually said is:
Stuart Taylor has written a devastating couple of essays on the weak case of the prosecutor, Mike Nifong [citing] the lack of DNA evidence, the seemingly exculpatory digital photos and the testimony of a taxi driver.Now before anyone says, “McSurely's just like any attorney,” let’s remember a few things.
Some attorneys, like some people, say whatever suits their purposes. And some attorneys, like some people, say what fits the facts.
So what McSurely says tells us about him and not about attorneys.
Finally, let's note this from McSurely’s letter:
Brooks speaks at this summer's National Conservative Student Conference. Look for the students at this right-wing Republican recruiting ground to express support for the right's new heroes: "The Duke 3."What is McSurely telling us when he makes remarks like that instead of asking for the release by Nifong of DNA results, the medical report from Duke that McSurely references in his letter, and detailed information about Durham police lineup ID procedures in the Duke case?
When I first read McSurely’s letter it suggested how weak the prosecutors’ case is.
A second look at his letter only strengthens that suggestion.
Posted by JWM at 10:26 PM
Brendan Loy at Irish Trojan notes Reuters’ initial account of the arrests of the terror suspects in Canada made no mention that all the men involved were Muslims. Reuters later added they were “al-Qaeda inspired” but only after CNN had reported that.
As for the NY Times, Cori Dauber at Ranting Profs reports:
It is not until the 17th paragraph (which is on the second computer screen, if you're reading online) of the Times piece that you find confirmation that yesterday's raid in Toronto had something to do with Muslims or al Qaeda-oriented ideology.Loy and Dauber both make the vital point. Here’s how Dauber puts it:
This isn't about being anti-Muslim, or anti-Islam, this is about the fact that this was motivated by a very specific ideology, and it can't be understood outside of that context.A question for Reuters and the NY Times: How would you have reported if one of those arrested had been a former Duke Men’s lacrosse player?
To attempt to neuter this news requires stripping out that context, and doing so requires leaving the reader so ill-informed as to leave them mis-informed.
Posted by JWM at 4:57 PM
In June 1942, Japanese and American forces fought an epic battle at Midway, an island in the mid-Pacific just large enough for an airfield and a small harbor, where submarines could rearm and refuel.
Midway was one of World War II’s most decisive battles. America's victory at Midway halted the Japanese naval and air offensive in the Pacific.
Begun on June 4, the battle lasted three days. The decisive action took place the first day, so June 4 is observed as the battle’s anniversary. Today is the 64th anniversary of the Battle of Midway.
I don't know of a finer tribute to the skill, valor and sacrifice of the men who won the battle for us than Walter Lord's Foreword to Incredible Victory, his remarkable account of Midway. His foreword follows, after which there are links to 3 Battle of Midway sites.
"By any ordinary standard, they were hopelessly outclassed.You may want to visit these Midway websites:
They had no battleships, the enemy eleven. They had eight cruisers, the enemy twenty-three. They had three carriers (one of them crippled); the enemy had eight. Their shore defenses included guns from the turn of the century.
They knew little of war. None of the Navy pilots on one of their carriers had ever been in combat. Nor had any of the Army fliers. Of the Marines, 17 of 21 new pilots were just out of flight school – some with less than four hours’ flying time since then. Their enemy was brilliant, experienced and all-conquering.
They were tired, dead tired. The patrol plane crews, for instance, had been flying 15 hours a day, servicing their own planes, getting perhaps three hours’ sleep at night.
They had equipment problems. Some of their dive bombers couldn't dive - the fabric came off the wings. Their torpedoes were slow and unreliable; the torpedo planes even worse. Yet they were up against the finest fighting plane in the world.
They took crushing losses - 15 out of 15 in one torpedo squadron ....21 out of 27 in a group of fighters ...many, many more.
They had no right to win. Yet they did, and in doing so they changed the course of a war.
More than that, they added a new name – Midway – to that small list that inspires men by shining example. Like Marathon, the Armada, the Marne, a few others, Midway showed that every once in a while 'what must be' need not be at all.
Even against the greatest of odds, there is something in the human spirit – a magic blend of skill, faith and valor – that can lift men from certain defeat to incredible victory."
Battle of Midway - Department of the Navy-Naval Historical Center staff prepared this excellent print and photo narrative.
The Battle of Midway, 1942 - A brief outline of the battle and the eyewitness account of Japanese pilot, Commander Mitsuo Fuchida, who was lead pilot at Pearl Harbor.
Midway@nationalgeographic.com - This is an extraordinary site. With narrative, photos, and video, it explains how the Navy, National Geographic, and undersea explorer Robert Ballard, who led the scientific team which located RMS Titanic, searched for and finally found on the Pacific's bottom the carrier, USS Yorktown, which was sunk by torpedo fire on June 6 after suffering severe damage earlier in the battle
Posted by JWM at 10:25 AM
When I heard the news yesterday from Canada of the break up of the terrorist group (See "Two letters to Canadian neighbors" ), one of the thoughts that passed through my mind was: "Thank God Jean Chretien is gone and Steve Harper is Prime Minister."
The U.S. and Canada will work more effectively on mutual security measures with Harper than would have been possible with Chretien.
Chretien was sort of North America's Jacques Chirac.
Thinking about the PM change led me to recall a post you might enjoy rereading today. It went up Jan. 24, 2006.
Title: "How did The Washington Post miss all those Canadians?"
Here's part of it:
Yesterday's Canadian election confirmed what polls and pundits had been reporting: Millions of voters strongly favored the Conservatives and were disgusted by the Liberal's stumbling social policies and massive corruption.If you go to the post, take a look at the comment thread. The post was linked by www.nealenews.com, a major Canadian blog. That drew about 20 comments from Canadians. Although the topic was politically charged, their comments are without exception civil and interesting. And a few had some nice humor.
But The Washington Post apparently couldn't locate any of those voters. At least, none were quoted in its post-election story, "Canadians Move Right, Elect New Leadership."
The Post only quoted one person who even claimed to have voted Conservative. And it told its readers said she did so “reluctantly:”"I think we have to give it a try. But I am very afraid that it will be too far right," said Florence Koven, 72, emerging from the polls after voting -- reluctantly, she said -- for the Conservative Party. "The unknown always concerns you. Mr. Harper (the Conservative leader) says he is a changed man; we'll see how much he has changed."Yes indeed, all of us on both sides of the border need to be sooo careful about voting for Conservatives. And if they win, we must always hope they change once in office.
Posted by JWM at 8:10 AM