Since February 2009 , this blog and Huib's 3 other Euroblogs are together at:

- In Europa Zu Hause [DE]
- L'Europe Chez Soi [FR]
- At Home in Europe [EN]
- In Europa Thuis [NL]

Saturday, June 02, 2007

US embassy in Baghdad: We caused "expletives" in the State department and an order to remove the images from the Bechtel-Berger Website!

An AP press release, relayed by CNN today (June 1, 2007):

Web site offers too much detail on new U.S. Embassy

Story Highlights:

• Architectural firm posts detailed plans for U.S. Embassy being built in Baghdad
• State Department says images "detract" from security of new embassy
• Company says they were "conjectural" and you'd learn more from Google Earth
• Images were removed from Web site Thursday at State Department's request
But on this blog, they were published in full! (See yesterday's "Pharaonic US Embassy in Baghdad"). Here is one of them:
[Marine guards US Deputy Ambassador's villa in Baghdad. Computer drawing (design phase) from BTY website.]

We did not intend to do harm to US security. Really! Our post about the "Pharaonic US embassy in Baghdad" (29.5.07) was about its "hybris", its provocative grandeur and aloofness. Not about it's security provisions.
We deemed it a symbol of the new US "isolationism", an aggressive isolationism for export.

Just like the Project for an American Century of the NeoCons imagined it.

But, let us not exaggerate: Very few (too few!) people read "Legal Alien". Some more "At Home in Europe", and, practically nobody "huibslog", the very new comprehensive blog, I publish on another network than "". It is difficult to imagine, that these marginal blogs caused such a "shock and awe" in the State Department...

Sudden nervous visiting from Washington on my blogs...
However... After publication of the drawings of the Kansas BTY Bureau in my blogs, I saw, on my monitoring site 'Motigo', some nervous visitors' movements from Washington and California on my 'blogger'-related websites. But not on "huibslog". I should work at my Technorati and Google ratings for that last blog...

In short, I think, that the main cause of the panic was the blog post by Tom Engelhardt, in the Tomdispatch Blog, a widely read anti-MSM publication, that also served as my link to the BTY drawings.

Tomdispatch blog did not publicize the images. Engelhardt only ridiculed them in a delicious way. I DID look them up and posted them here, with my comments and those of the BTY-Bechtel firm.

So, if I am not mistaken, this blog is now one of the few places in the world, where curious people (people who got curious because of the panicky Washington move), may see, copy and transfer those very dangerous images!

It was not at all my intention, to deliver blueprints for would-be attackers of the buildings! I am a peace-minded, anti-violence person. I loathe the Al Qaeda terrorists as much as I hate the racist protagonists of a "Clash Of Civilizations".

Much ado about nothing
In earnest: I do not think that the computer-generated drawings will learn anything new to evil people. That is also the opinion of US experts. (AP:)

Berger Devine Yaeger's parent company, the giant contractor Louis Berger Group, said the plans had been very preliminary and would not be of help to potential U.S. enemies.

"The actual information that was up there was purely conjectural and conceptual in nature," said Louis Berger spokesman Jeffrey Willis. "Google Earth could give you a better snapshot of what the site looks like on the ground."

But that is not the view of the secretive Washington administration of today:


Some U.S. officials acknowledged that damage may have been done by the postings and used expletives to describe their personal reactions, but downplayed the overall risk posed.

In translation, that means, that self-imposed secretive rules have been broken by stupidity (hence the 'expletives'), but that, the 'officials' personally think, that it is much ado about nothing. Look:

"People are eventually going to figure out where all these places are, but you don't have to draw them a map," said one senior official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak about the embassy project.

The construction site in Baghdad is under heavy guard and treated with extreme secrecy. It is off-limits to all but those with special passes, surrounded by tall, concrete blast walls and impossible to see except from the air.

And, as if to refute this last statement AP and CNN publish this photo of the construction site:

If I am guilty of divulging US State secrets, then I am in excellent company!

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