PAGING STEVEN DEN BESTE….Millionaire car alarm entrepreneur Darrell Issa (R-Qualcomm) knows what Iraq needs: cell phones. And despite the fact that the entire Middle East uses GSM, the European cell phone standard, he thinks Iraq needs American cell phones. Specifically, Qualcomm cell phones:

“If European GSM technology is deployed in Iraq, much of the equipment used to build the cell phone system would be manufactured in France, Germany, and elsewhere in western and northern Europe. Furthermore, royalties paid on the technology would flow to French and European sources, not U.S. patent holders,” Issa said in his letter to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and USAID Administrator, Ambassador Wendy Chamberlain.

Did you get that? France and Germany! French and European sources! Sacre bleu!

Dammit, where is Steven Den Beste on this? He’s the one who first taught me that GSM, far from being a mere technical standard, was actually a morality tale about the fecklessness of Europeans, but now that he has a chance to really gloat about it there’s nothing but silence from the 49th congressional district. Wake up, Steven.