Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Anonymous Source Watch: Washington Post (Wednesday, September 16)

Mullen: More Troops ‘Probably’Needed (A1)
By Ann Scott Tyson

Anonymous Quote #1
“There's a very big opportunity here to reduce violence by reaching out to some of the lower-level guys, to give them an opportunity to see a life that's better than fighting for the Taliban," said a senior official at the NATO command in Kabul who discussed the program on the condition of anonymity. "What's really important is to get a feel for where the Afghans are" on reintegration, the official said.

No decisions have been made on what the incentives would be, although the official said they could include cash and jobs.

The major challenge is to develop a program the Afghan government accepts and implements from the start -- in contrast to Iraq, where the United States paid former fighters and then struggled to persuade the Iraqi government to integrate them into its security forces and other jobs, the senior official said. "It has to be owned and driven by them."

As Right Jabs Continue, White House Debates a Counterpunching Strategy (A1)
By Anne E. Kornblut

Anonymous Quote #1
"In a world with Fox News and Rush Limbaugh and the Drudge Report and everything else that makes up the right-wing noise machine, nothing is clean and nothing is simple," a senior administration official said. "You don't stomp a story out. You ride the wave and try to steer it to safe water."

Anonymous Quote #2
"There's a broader argument that is the underlying argument to all of these attacks, which is a very fundamental struggle about trying to tear this president down and delegitimize his presidency," said one senior administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity. "That is really the war. And all of these are skirmishes -- some of them flare up into battles -- but the broader war is about the fate of this presidency and the other side's attempts to delegitimize him and to make him into a failure."

White House Seeks Renewal of Surveillance Laws (A3)
By Carrie Johnson and Ellen Nakashima

Anonymous Quote #1
Durbin and Feingold want to tighten standards for obtaining national security letters so that the government must show some "nexus to terrorism," according to a Senate Democratic aide, heightening the current standard of showing "relevance" to a counterterrorism investigation.

Anonymous Quote #2
The bill would also ensure that new powers granted under last year's law would not be used as a pretext to target the communications of Americans in the United States without a warrant, another Senate Democratic aide said.

Diplomat in Kabul Leaves in Dispute (A14)
By Pamela Constable and Karen DeYoung

Anonymous Quote #1
A senior U.N. official here said Galbraith "will be back."

Anonymous Quote #2
In the post-election dispute, sources close to the United Nations said Galbraith represented the view that the fraud probe must be fully carried out, along with a partial recount that the complaints panel ordered, even if this leads to a delayed runoff.

Anonymous Quote #3
Diplomatic sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said U.S. officials here had been frustrated in their efforts to press Karzai to acknowledge the widespread fraud and to accept the possibility of a runoff, or to make a deal in which he would remain as a titular president but be held more accountable for his actions and allow himself to be surrounded by foreign, technocratic advisers.
The sources said Karzai has been privately trying to win over European diplomats, including Eide, suggesting that they not be overly concerned about the fraud problem and give him full support on the grounds that he has won a decisive mandate.

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