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Wednesday, June 21

Catching Up

After being greatly out of touch with the blogosphere for almost half a year I have a lot of catching up to do!

Readers who have been with this blog for a time might remember that Pundita is a huge fan of Dave Schuler’s Samoyeds. For those who share my infatuation there is a beautiful picture of Tally strutting her stuff for a competition.

Also from visiting The Glittering Eye I found that Dymphna at Gates of Vienna decided to take a look at UNICEF’s Day of the African Child. What she sees makes a good companion piece to the Michael Duffy book review of William Easterly’s The White Man’s Burden (See Pundita Monday entry.)

But the reason I visited GE was to catch up on Dave’s views on immigration at the US southern border. He's written a lot since my last visit, so that will be my weekend blog reading. I’ll be starting with Assessing the threat at our border and following the links to other essays on the topic.

Over at another eclectic blog, Riehl World View, I’m learning about the
contradictions surrounding Ron Suskind’s The One Percent Solution, which is getting a lot of media buzz. There’s just something about the way Dan Riehl puts things that often elicits a bitter laugh from me. Dan's look at Suskind is another one of those essays.

After laying out Suskind’s portrayal of Abu Zubaydah as a moron incapable of hatching a terrorist plot, Dan pulls up other sets of data that call into question the portrayal. Suskind’s target, it seems, is not Zubaydah or al Qaeda but the Bush administration.

Speaking of al Qaeda, one of the decisions I made when returning to the blogosphere was that Pundita would no longer file occasional reports on the war. That was a hard decision because I want to show my continued support for GWOT and the Iraq Campaign. But for now, the GWOT blogs/websites I list on blogroll will have to suffice.

Pundita notes that Dan Riehl and Dave Schuler’s blogs are listed on the blogroll under the Eclectic category, but both also do useful analysis on war-related news and Dan snaps up war articles that might not get much play in the MSM.

I should also note that although I’ve listed Gates of Vienna blog under GWOT, the above link shows that the blog deals with other topics as well.

Now for some good news: Moscow-based blogger and UPS reporter Peter Lavelle has become a TV star! Pundita readers will recall that Peter is one of the winners of Pundita’s 2005 Weblog Awards (for Russia analysis). Peter wrote in May about the launching of his new show:
[…]IMHO (In my humble opinion) will start airing this weekend at Russia Today television. It is slated as a weekly program. I hope readers will drop by to catch the show - running Sunday during the second half hour of each hour.

The station's website is being updated [in May], but the web cast can be accessed at: mms://polar.rttv.ru/rttv […]
If you tune in, BE WARNED that Peter has not struck me as a GWOT supporter or a fan of the Bush administration. Yet his reports, analysis, and roundtable discussions about Russian political events are very valuable. The analyses are a counterweight to strongly biased views in the US mainstream media about Putin’s government. And Peter's news reports and panel discussions correct the skewed picture of Russia that American (and often, European!) reporting tends to present.

I think I’ve noted before that the only Russia commentator I trust aside from Peter Lavelle is Dr. Stephen Cohen, who guests regularly on John Batchelor’s radio show. Between listening to Steve’s reports and regular visits to Peter’s Untimely Thoughts blog, Pundita readers can be reasonably well informed about big political issues in Russia and Russia-US relations.

I’d like to catch up with all the blogs on the Pundita blogroll and some that aren’t but that’s as much as I can manage today.
Comments:
Welcome back, Pundita!
 
Thanks for the welcome, Piercello! The team is touched by the number of welcome back notes we've received.
 
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