Sunday, May 01, 2005

Traffic Burst

We've just had a surge of traffic, for once not entirely associated with Viktor Bout. Metafilter linked to a story, from some time ago, regarding Shanaz Rashid, the grateful Iraqi woman who appeared on stage with Blair at the Labour conference. She had every reason to be grateful, because her husband had been named Minister of Waterways by the IGC. He's the new president's brother-in-law. She had also had only limited opportunities to reconsider, having been in London since 1968 and only having returned once for a flying visit to the Green Zone. I flagged this and pointed out the curious similarity of George Bush also appearing with a grateful Iraqi woman who had, ah, other reasons to be grateful.

Interestingly, she has also now appointed herself Permanent Representative of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan in the UK, so I take it she won't be going anywhere near Iraq any time soon.

There's also been extra traffic from Bout googlers. People seem to be searching pretty constantly for Richard Chichakli...not an unusual statement all things considered, but searches include the Bank of America, American Express, HSBC, a lot of people in Texas, the Spanish Ministry of Defence and the US Department of Justice. "Sir, we're sorry, but your card has been, ah, declined. In fact, it's been placed on a trap watchlist lookup table that requires us to cut it up and hold one of your legs as security until the FBI get here.." Yeah, but no doubt he's in the UAE by now, or some hellridden African state where he married the warlord's daughter.

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