Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Foreign fighters dwindling?
U.S. intelligence sources say they now believe Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's Al Qaeda in Ira q is beginning to run out of foreign fighters who are willing to conduct suicide missions, according to the London Times.
The unnamed intelligence sources tell The Times that Zarqawi is considering changing his terrorist organization into more of a traditional military force, which would launch coordinated guerrilla-style raids on Western targets in Iraq.
What's more, the intelligence sources say the broader Al Qaeda network is sending training and planning experts to Iraq, to help Zarqawi set up the military force, and smuggle Al Qaeda members into Iraq — with additional help from the Iranian government.
Remember Michael Scheuer?
Speaking of Zarqawi: Remember former CIA official Michael Scheuer? He's the one who wrote the book, "Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror," which called the war in Iraq "unprovoked."
Well, he now says U.S. forces had Zarqawi in their sights "almost every day for a year before the invasion" of Iraq, but were told not to kill him because, he tells Australian TV, "the president and the National Security Council decided it was more important not to give the Europeans the impression we were gunslingers."
Scheuer, by the way, once insisted Usama bin Laden was not a terrorist but a "resistance fighter," and once described the Al Qaeda leader as a "brilliant man."
The day after his amendment to require quarterly reports on Iran's weapons capabilities was rejected, Iowa Democrat and House Intelligence Committee member Leonard Boswell went to the House floor last week to decry the "raw display of partisanship" that "dealt a blow to our ability to gather intelligence" on Iran. He insisted: "Congress must become a better consumer of intelligence."
So what did he have to say the next morning, when intelligence officials came to Capitol Hill to brief the House Intelligence Committee on their assessment of Iran's capabilities? Well, nothing. According to Hill sources, Boswell didn't attend. His spokeswoman refused to comment.
Apology Demanded From ABC
Officials in Prince George's County, Maryland, demanded an apology from ABC for last week's installment of the prime-time drama "Commander in Chief."
In that episode, a local news station reports of civil unrest at a protest over the county's high homicide rate. The president — played by Geena Davis — then decides to visit the community, where a restaurant is shown advertising sweet potato pie, pork chops and chitlins. One local politician said of the episode: "They took the largest, wealthiest black county and reduced it to a stereotype of a poor, dangerous black neighborhood."
ABC has since issued an apology, saying, "We ... embellished the reality to enhance the story. Our goal was to create a more compelling drama for our viewers, not to portray the actual community."
— FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report.