Thursday, March 18, 2004


Purported Al Qaeda Letter Calls Truce in Spain

The statement said it supported President Bush (news - web sites) in his reelection campaign, and would prefer him to win in November rather than the Democratic candidate John Kerry (news - web sites), as it was not possible to find a leader "more foolish than you (Bush), who deals with matters by force rather than with wisdom."

In comments addressed to Bush, the group said:

"Kerry will kill our nation while it sleeps because he and the Democrats have the cunning to embellish blasphemy and present it to the Arab and Muslim nation as civilization."

"Because of this we desire you (Bush) to be elected."

Waxman's New Iraq Lie Searchable Database 

According to this new website:
The Iraq on the Record report, prepared at the request of Rep. Henry A. Waxman, is a comprehensive examination of the statements made by the five Administration officials most responsible for providing public information and shaping public opinion on Iraq: President George W. Bush, Vice President Richard Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Colin Powell, and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice.

This Iraq on the Record database identifies 237 specific misleading statements about the threat posed by Iraq made by these five officials in 125 public appearances in the time leading up to and after the commencement of hostilities in Iraq. The search options on the left can be used to find statements by any combination of speaker, subject, keyword, or date.
Cool, huh? I've added Iraq On The Record to our sidebar under "Useful Information."

How our government worked to keep the Taliban safe and secure right up until 9/11 

Dawkins writes:

This story in the New York Observer is based on an interview with Julie Sirrs, a former Defense Intelligence Agency analyst, who spills the beans on her tireless - and futile - efforts to alert her superiors (or anyone who would listen) to how grave a threat the Taliban, Al Qaeda, and Osama B.L. were leading up to 9/11. Back then, though, folks didn't seem to care.

(See, the Taliban was going to help us out with a nifty oil pipeline through Afghanistan, and we didn't find it prudent at the time to piss them off by, say, putting a stop to their terroristic endeavors…. You know the routine.)

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

A Prayer for Brooks/Happy St. Patrick's Day!! 

speakingcorpse writes:


I hope you watch the News Program which you regularly soil with your filthy comments. If you watched yesterday, you might have seen the refutation of your entire poisonous argument about how the Spaniards are appeasers, and how pro-Kerry Americans ought to vote Bush if Bush's homeland security policy fails to prevent another major U.S. attack. If we are attacked again under the watch of that simulacrum of death, I'll be even more likely to vote for Kerry than before. And the fact that Bush allowed 9/11 to happen is grounds enough to ensure his 2004 defeat.

But anyway, all of this is irrelevant, because your entirely fascist column supposed, wrongly, that Aznar lost because of the attacks. No--he might have lost anyway; and he DID lose, certainly, because, like his turd of a buddy in Washington, he lied about the attacks, for the sake of political gain. So that's why the Spaniards voted against him.

Please note the following:
MARGARET WARNER: Mr. Checa, what is your reading of what was the number one thing behind the outcome? In other words, was it Aznar's support for the war against Bush or those people, or was it this public perception that he was trying to withhold information about who was behind the bombing?

NICOLAS CHECA: Margaret, I really think what the key issue here is the handling or mishandling of public information in the 48 hours after the tragic events of last Thursday. I think it bears mentioning that the election was a statistical dead heat, according to public polls the morning of the tragedy on Thursday morning well within the margin of error, one or two points. And it was really not until Saturday evening, as Keith in your set-up shared with us, that the government decided to come forward with information as to the arrest of these five suspects linked to al-Qaida.

As an example, it took a personal call from Prime Minister Elect Zapatero to the interior minister, the Spanish homeland security secretary, informing him that the Socialist Party was aware of the arrest and that he was prepared to move forward with that information. It took that kind of information to get the current government to come forward and announce to the country at large that in fact it was not the ETA lead that would generate success down the road in the investigation, but rather the al-Qaida route.

MARGARET WARNER: So you're saying it more than just a public suspicion that they were withholding information, in fact the Zapatero campaign had to essentially pressure the government to release this information?

NICOLAS CHECA: Precisely. Yet there was a report earlier in the afternoon on Saturday coming out of Spanish intelligence agency saying that they were 99 percent confident that ETA was not responsible for the attacks and that all the avenues of the investigation pointed into al-Qaida.

In the early afternoon after the arrests had already been made, the director of the Spanish CIA denied those reports and it was after that that the campaign manager for the Zapatero campaign had to come forward and basically inform public opinion that there was information that was not being shared with the population.
Anyway, what really was the point of your toxic emission today? Was it really that Al Qaeda is winning because their victims don't share your incipient fascism? I guess fire-fighters in America are appeasers, too? I don't believe that you believe any of this poison. Do you really believe Bush is "more aggressively anti-terror" than Kerry, even though Bush obviously lost interest in Afghanistan after a couple of weeks of bombing? Do you believe that Americans are less inclined to appeasement than the Spanish, because, after 9/11, we were collectively lobotomized by our brain-damaged, brain damaging media apparatus? Do you think mindlessly supporting filthy criminals who are trying to loot the treasury really amounts to "resolve"? Do you really think it's to America's credit that it has produced an entity like you? Is it to America's credit that a piece of human waste like you can join forces with Al Qaeda to terrify America's citizens into supporting a kleptocratic government that is now in the process of destroying our freedoms and selling off the entire public sector?

America is attacked, and then it goes fucking insane, whipped into a frenzy by its native-born terrorists like you, and you then say that America has shown resolve in facing down terror. Americans who support Bush post-9/11 have shown the resolve of a psychotically deluded mental patient who kills himself in the belief that he is Jesus, and that his own death will sanctify the world. You're the fellow patient at the mental hospital that tells the deluded false Messiah to jump out the window. This is behavior that's certainly not consistent with your ostentatiously professed Judaism.

So that's what you are: a pseudo-Christ pseudo-killer.

The terrorists did not succeed in influencing the Spanish elections. They succeeded in horribly murdering lot of people. If they murder a lot more people in America, then our rejection of the administration that has allowed the murder to happen will not add to Al Qaeda's success. It will show that we have retained the vestiges of sanity. But if we are attacked, and then we are cowed by Reichstag-burners like you into voting for Bush--THEN Al Qaeda will certainly be able to celebrate its success (facilitated by its fascist, New-York-Times-ruining, fifth-columnists) in fucking up America for good.

So, in conclusion, I pray that Jesus will save you.

Stop shitting out of your mouth and die, so you can go to heaven.

I hope you were thinking about your son's Bar Mitzvah when you shit all over the paper of record today.


P.S. Eat shit.

Can He Save Us? (In Any Case, Contribute.) 

"From the Desk of Bill Clinton":
You and I have made history together before. It's time to make some more.

Just a week after they began their multi-million dollar advertising blitz, Republicans have gone negative with the first of what will certainly be a barrage of attack ads. This is a major test for John Kerry's campaign -- and it's a significant opportunity for you and me.

It's our chance to demonstrate that, in 2004, we're not going to yield an inch to the Republican attack machine when it comes to defining what this campaign is all about. It's our chance to give John Kerry the kind of immediate, dramatic support he needs to stand toe-to-toe with the President and force him to debate the real issues in this campaign.

March 16, 2004 -- Let's make today the day that the entire Democratic Party speaks with one voice and launches the most successful 10-day fundraising drive in our Party's history. Here's my challenge to you: Send a donation right now to help me launch a "$10 Million in 10 Days" fundraising drive for John Kerry's campaign. Let's send donations flooding into Kerry headquarters.



Scat-Man passes this along:

Shorter neocons:

The President, Vice President, Secretary of Defense, National Security Advisor and their federal staffs could not have known about, or prevented a terrorist attack. Only a senator from Massachusetts has that kind of power.

End of Story. 

Even after the quotation had been corrected, Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico and Richard C. Holbrooke, President Bill Clinton's delegate to the United Nations, called reporters to offer their response.

"It's so obviously the truth what Kerry said, and the Republicans are just having fun with it - everybody knows it's true," Mr. Holbrooke said, adding that he called after speaking to Ms. Cutter. "In the last six or seven months, I've been in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Europe. I've met with leaders in all of those regions, and they have overwhelmingly - not unanimously but overwhelmingly - said that they hope that there's a change in leadership."
Full story, if you give a shit.

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

"A very curious young man." 

Dawkins writes:

This morning, Manuel Miranda, the Republican judiciary committee documents hacker, was on C-SPAN to talk about the issues surrounding his case. A very charming, straightforward man.

Some highlights from the discussion:

Speaking with a straight face (or whatever you care to call the flap of skin that covers the front part of his skull), Miranda refutes the suggestion that he illegally stole the Democratic committee documents, while acknowledging that the Democrats didn't exactly give them to him:

"These documents were on an open server. A server is a tool that serves users. These were documents that were actually given to us by the server."

Miranda comments on the possible motives that drove his accomplice, Jason Lundell, the young GOP aide who served as Miranda's chief hacker, to download thousands of files from the Democratic server onto his hard drive:

"I think he was just a very curious young man."

Spectacle of Millions of Voters Not Paralyzed with Reverential Fear Sends Brooks into Particularly Alarmed Rage-Out-Of-Puzzlement 

Actual title: Al Qaeda's Wish List.

An opinion column in which David Brooks, moderate conservative journalist, implies that Al Qaeda's "wish" is the installation of democratically elected center-left governments in the countries of Europe and (by extension) the United States. Will Brooks have to answer for the libels he writes here? Does he even "believe" them? Once again, the answer to these questions is no. His sole purpose is to encourage fear and rage in George Bush's opponents and fear and zealotry in George Bush's supporters, all while disseminating insinuatory anti-Kerry libel through a mainstream media organ.

1. "Some significant percentage of the Spanish electorate was mobilized after the massacre to shift the course of the campaign, throw out the old government and replace it with one whose policies are more to Al Qaeda's liking."

Al Qaeda's desired policy outcome being, apparently, the withdrawal of Spanish troops from Iraq. It does seem strange that Brooks has inside knowledge of such a radical shift in Al Qaeda's ideology and objectives. When they attacked the U.S. on 9/11, we didn't even have any troops in Iraq yet! (How could we then have appeased Al Qaeda by withdrawing them?)

2. "What is the Spanish word for appeasement?"

Not sure what Brooks is trying to suggest here.

3. "But I do know that reversing course in the wake of a terrorist attack is inexcusable. I don't care what the policy is. You do not give terrorists the chance to think that their methods work."

So now Brooks is suggesting--and this is really breath-taking--that Al Qaeda (assuming they are indeed found to have perpetrated the Spanish attacks) had the specific objective of causing a "reversal" in the "course" of the Spanish election, resulting in the installation of a Socialist government. Even more enormous is Brooks' suggestion that (even if this ludicrous notion were true) Spaniards who support a particular political party ought to feel accountable when their choice of party happens to coincide with that of Islamic terrorists!

4. "We can be pretty sure now that this will not be the last of the election-eve massacres."

Brooks: "Imagine the horror. It's November 2. Terrorists strike in the U.S. Kerry gets elected." Get it? We must unite to defeat the party that David Brooks believes the terrorists believe is most conducive to their terrorism!

5. "The terrorists sought this because they understand, even if many in Europe do not, that Iraq is a crucial battleground in the war on terror."

"The terrorists" understand "that Iraq is a crucial battleground in the war on terror"? Can Brooks really have been meaning something here?

6. "For Al Qaeda's mission is not about one country or another. It is existential."

Aren't most "missions," when it really comes down to it, "existential"?

7. "Now all European politicians will know that if they side with America on controversial security threats, and terrorists strike their nation, they might be blamed by their own voters."

Bad Spaniards, for letting those terrorists cause you to put such bad notions into the minds of all the impressionable European politicians!

8. "If a terrorist group attacked the U.S. three days before an election, does anyone doubt that the American electorate would rally behind the president or at least the most aggressively antiterror party?"

Does anyone doubt that that is what Brooks wants? Could this column be any more transparent a revelation of what most of us have known all along--that the GOP's only remaining strategy is to scare the living shit out of the American public with terror-bogeyman--and that this spectacle of the citizens of democratic Spain setting a bad example, of the non-desired electoral behavior, scares the crap out of them?

9. "Why hasn't Colin Powell spent the past few years crisscrossing Europe so that voters there would at least know the arguments for the liberation of Iraq, would at least have some accurate picture of Americans, rather than the crude cowboy stereotype propagated by the European media?"

As for the first part of the sentence: After all, where was he? I can just imagine Colin Powell on a kind of whistlestop tour through southern France, hollering about Iraqi liberation from a bunting-hung podium in the sleepy village squares.

The notion that the European media is responsible for the "crude cowboy stereotype" is too absurd to address.

10. "It will change how Al Qaeda thinks about the world."

A genuinely bizarre claim. Hasn't Al Qaeda already kind of pretty much decided how they "think about the world'? Don't they really not even "think about the world" that much? Don't they just kind of go out and blow shit up? Has contemporary Spanish politics replaced the Holy Koran as their guiding and inspiring text? Apparently.

But enough. One only hopes that history will look as kindly upon Brooks' writings as will nature upon his corpse.

Meanwhile, check out this wonderful "briefing" by Luke Mitchell in this month's Harper's magazine. This passage follows Mitchell's startling claim (startling to me, at least) that even a nuclear terror attack on the U.S. would not, as John Ashcroft likes to imagine, "destroy America":
Contrary to the administration's claims, the War on Terror is not "a challenge as formidable as any ever faced by our nation." It is not the Cold War, in which our enemy did in fact have the ability to destroy the Earth. Nor is it the Second World War (405,399 dead Americans), nor the First (116,516). It certainly is not the Civil War, still the deadliest conflict in American history (364,511 dead on the Union side, and an estimated 258,000 dead in the South) and one that specifically threatened to end the American experiment. It is not even a war in the "moral equivalent of war" sense of Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty. Fighting it does not make us a better people. It is much closer to the War on Drugs--a comic-book name for a fantasy crusade. We can no more rid the world of terror than we can rid it of alienation. This may sound like a splitting of linguistic hairs, but we made a similar category error in Vietnam by calling a U.S. invasion a Vietnamese "civil war." That misidentification cost 58,200 American lives.

As opposed to terror, murder, at the hands of Al Qaeda or anyone else, is a very real threat. But it is not a supreme threat, and by calling it what it is we can recognize that it does not require the wholesale reorganization of the American way of life. The prevention of murder does not require the suspension of habeas corpus, nor does it call for the distribution of national identity cards, nor does it require the fingerprinting of Brazilian tourists. Preventing murder certainly does not require war, which of course is quite murderous in and of itself. What preventing murder requires is patient police work.
"Patient police work"--imagine that. Everyone knows that a few well-placed phone calls (and not a global war-crusade) could have prevented 9/11. Will the good politicians say it?

[An aside: It's clear now (if it wasn't before) that "the campaign" is underway, and that John Kerry and the Democrats are going to have to spend the next eight months being called terrorists--at first subtly, then not-so-subtly. Anyone have any ideas for what they should do?]

Monday, March 15, 2004

Pretty much sums it up 

So when the Bush campaign boasts of the president's record in fighting terrorism and accuses John Kerry of being weak on the issue, when Republican congressmen suggest that a vote for Mr. Kerry is a vote for Osama, remember this: the administration's actual record is one of indulgence toward regimes that are strongly implicated in terrorism, and of focusing on actual terrorist threats only when forced to by events.


I don't get it. How did a member of the Spanish Socialist party get into the United States Army?

Bush: He shows up… and on time! 

Dawkins writes:

Whenever I'm weary of reading all that bad news in the newspapers about how President Bush lied about this, or mislead about that, or failed to accomplish the other, I turn to New York Times writer Elisabeth [Ed. note: "Bulimia"] Bumiller's "White House Letter" to remind me that he's just a real guy… and a "reliable" and "vigilant" one too. In fact, he's practically the "mirror opposite of Bill Clinton"!

Remember him? He was our last president, who was really different from our current president. It's always been edifying (and evidently still is), to draw contrasts between Bill Clinton and President Bush.

For example, when you look back at Bill Clinton, you see a guy who "routinely ran late and let meetings turn into seminars."

But "in Mr. Bush's world, if he is not on time, he is a half-hour early; his aides say he does everything fast, including eating meals. To his supporters, Bush Time reflects the president's discipline and focus."

So, it's like:

Clinton = meetings running late and turning into seminars = moral equivocation + indulgent intellectualizing + rampant sexual profligacy


Bush = short meetings, little discussion = moral clarity + strong leadership + discipline and focus + values, commitment, decency

Bumiller quotes "a Republican supporter who meets with Mr. Bush but did not want to be named because White House aides get angry when people talk about their closeness to the president":

(God forbid a New York Times reporter would ever cause Bush's aides to become "angry"…)
"He also knows how to keep others on the topic. When they veer off, he'll move them quickly back to the subject. There's not a lot of intellectual wandering going on, because he's busy."
Get it? The President is busy. One hour with that silly, intellectually wandering 9/11 panel is plenty, and barely as much as our busy President can spare.

(Speaking of intellectual wandering? Doesn't that sound like something that blow-job lover Clinton would be into?)
Out of any given 24 hours in Washington, Mr. Bush will generally spend 11 hours working, 7 hours sleeping and 6 other hours in the White House residence.
11 hours working? The President of the United States? Shoot, most of us regular Americans work 7 or 8 hour days. This guy is busting his tail for us!
He often eats a lunch of salad alone while he channel-surfs in a small dining room off the Oval Office.
Mr. Bush, it should be noted, spent one hour at the Houston rodeo last week. There he patted some cows on the head and said, briefly, "I thought there was a lot of bull in Washington, D.C."
Shucks! How can we stay mad at this guy!

(Incidentally, the headline in the print version of the paper today was "Want a Reliable President? Here's One You Can Set Your Clocks By." I wonder why it was changed on the web to "It's 10 O'Clock. Do You Know Where Your President Is? In Bed." Both are pretty inane.)

AmCops: go see David Mamet's "Spartan," today! 

Dawkins writes:

Lost amid all the political hate speech directed these days at Mel Gibson and his "Passion" movie was the release this weekend of David Mamet's "Spartan."

In all seriousness, go see this movie now.

Skillfully scripted, plotted, and acted, it's a suspense thriller that's deeply political, thought-provoking, and quite incendiary.

The rough outline of the plot's first ten minutes:

In the dead of night, the daughter of a certain very important person is kidnapped from the campus of a Boston university, and various shadowy intelligence services, with help from mercenary commandos like Val Kilmer, are brought together to retrieve the girl.

I'll not reveal more (because I know you'll all see it), but suffice to say the story becomes very complicated, and the United States and its intelligence services come out looking not very good at all, and the film is particularly damning of a faceless - and highly sinister and cutthroat -- coterie of certain high-level executive "handlers."

See it quick before it leaves the theaters.

Interesting as well that a cameo role (as a sultry Boston bartendress) is played by Alexandra Kerry, daughter of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry.

You heard it here first: Look for Kerry's daughter's appearance to become fodder, whether in shouts or whispers, for anti-Kerry slander from forces working toward Bush's re-election. Something like:

"How can Kerry's daughter - and by extension, Kerry himself -- condone such an anti-American, anti-patriotic film…?"

Scant attention's been paid so far to the damning things the film has to say, but the Village Voice has it right when it says of Mamet:
…there's little question that he's aiming this modest shoulder rocket at Bush-Cheney Corp., and that the moral gist of his wild tale is essentially true. By despairing of the military or intelligence communities rather than heroizing them, Mamet is quietly bucking the system-not just Hollywood, but the larger octopus, which will surely engineer the movie's neglect just as congressmen blackmail broadcasting companies into suspending Howard Stern and federal tax dollars pour into faith-based institutions on their way to buying ticket blocks for The Passion of the Christ.
Oh yeah, saw "The Passion of the Christ" too. Will comment soon…

The filtered becomes the filter: "In Washington, I'm George W. Bush reporting." 

Dawkins writes:

I don't understand what the problem is here. The government has merely created and disseminated these "video news releases" to educate members of the public about all the fantabulous benefits they'll receive from President Bush's Medicare reforms!

What's so wrong with the government wanting to do its own "journalism"? Why are journalists so snotty all the time about insisting that they're the only ones who can do real journalism?

From the New York Times today:
Federal investigators are scrutinizing television segments in which the Bush administration paid people to pose as journalists praising the benefits of the new Medicare law, which would be offered to help elderly Americans with the costs of their prescription medicines.

The videos are intended for use in local television news programs. Several include pictures of President Bush receiving a standing ovation from a crowd cheering as he signed the Medicare law on Dec. 8.

The materials were produced by the Department of Health and Human Services, which called them video news releases, but the source is not identified. Two videos end with the voice of a woman who says, "In Washington, I'm Karen Ryan reporting."

But the production company, Home Front Communications, said it had hired her to read a script prepared by the government.

Another video, intended for Hispanic audiences, shows a Bush administration official being interviewed in Spanish by a man who identifies himself as a reporter named Alberto Garcia.

Another segment shows a pharmacist talking to an elderly customer. The pharmacist says the new law "helps you better afford your medications," and the customer says, "It sounds like a good idea." Indeed, the pharmacist says, "A very good idea."

In the videos and advertisements, the government urges beneficiaries to call a toll-free telephone number, 1-800-MEDICARE. People who call that number can obtain recorded information about prescription drug benefits if they recite the words "Medicare improvement."
At least the publicity campaign won't be costing taxpayers anything. It's a "win-win" for seniors and consumers of prescription drugs:
Other documents suggest the scope of the publicity campaign: $12.6 million for advertising this winter, $18.5 million to publicize drug discount cards this spring, about $18.5 million this summer, $30 million for a year of beneficiary education starting this fall and $44 million starting in the fall of 2005.

Federal law prohibits the use of federal money for "publicity or propaganda purposes" not authorized by Congress.
"Federal law"? That sounds to me a little like liberal political hate speech…

In a related story, it has been determined that George W. Bush is himself a journalist, analyzing and critiquing his own policy proposals in a rigorously objective and dispassionate fashion for the benefit of an informed and educated journalism-consuming public:

"In Washington, I'm a corrupt fraud lying to you. "

Giuseppe Abote adds:

Another ridiculous but true news item.

It is almost as though, borrowing from George Saunders, the administration made a list of wrongs that it had not yet committed but which were theoretically possible -- and then did them.

Put this one alongside formerly-plausible-only-in-theory shennagins such as:

1. Stocking the seemingly enthusiastic audience at a Bush campaign speech entirely with non-English speakers;

2. Classifying fast-food burger assembly as a "manufacturing" job;

3. Accusing John Kerry of being a spy for North Korea;

4. Demanding that entire concrete roadways be erected between the helipad and the groundbreaking site of that Long Island 9/11 memorial because (real quote) "the president's feet are not to touch the dirt."

And this is merely from the past two weeks or so.

Blicero adds: Do you think Bush is some kind of 'male witch' who if his shoes touch the dirt he'll melt? Is there some implicit allusion to Mary Magdalene wiping the dirt from Jesus' feet with her hair?

Spain Says No to Terrorism, No to Fascism 

So Spain suffers their September 11. As has been observed, the U.S. media (and in a kind of stunted manifestation, the front pages of local Carolina papers I saw while traveling down the coast this weekend) seemed rather desperate to watch a re-enactment of the patterns of response (scripted by them, incidentally) seen in our own homeland after our terrorist attacks. Well. I'm guessing that many of those newspaper editors (not to mention the wingnuts, squawking and ranting all weekend and no doubt feeling a tad impotent, that they couldn't force the voting Spaniards to listen) were rather surprised to find that their headlines were not inaccurate: Spain did mourn collectively; people did join together by the millions to repudiate terrorism.

So: did they fall prostrate at the feet of their Great Leader as soon as he saw fit to be filmed while visiting the bombing sites? Did they demand a reconfiguration of their criminal justice system? Did they declare themselves ready to "stand shoulder to shoulder" with Aznar, and agree to "watch what they say"? Did they call for an immediate invasion of Morocco? Did they put "Power of Pride" bumper stickers on their cars and start shooting patriotic music videos? Did they call down the End Times and the Apocalypse?

No: they called their president a liar (because he was lying), they blamed him for dragging their country into war (which they seem to have understood from the very beginning would make them less safe, not more--q.v. the bombings), they threw the bum out and elected a new president and a new party that they hope will--will what?--will make life in Spain better.

Confusing, huh? Don't they Stand United? Don't they yearn for Steady Leadership in Times of Indiscriminate Violent Death? Nope.
Following Attacks, Spain's Governing Party Is Beaten

The turnout was higher than expected. More than 77 percent of the country's 35 million eligible voters cast ballots, compared with 55 percent four years ago. In Madrid, the figure was 80 percent.

At El Pozo train station, where one of the attacks occurred, the walls were covered with graffiti that read, "Aznar Killer," and "No to Terrorism." Red candles and bouquets of flowers were haphazardly arranged in tribute to the victims. Just across the street, the polling station was set up in a school, some of whose students had lost parents in the attacks.

"I certainly did not vote for the Popular Party," said a 79-year-old retired carpenter who identified himself only as Julián. "My daughter's hand was cut off, and she almost lost a part of her leg. Aznar should come here to see that, to see these people. But he did nothing for us. He did nothing for the poor. He is one who brought us to war. I went through the civil war, and the postwar. But this is worse."


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