Saturday, January 12, 2008

Other Voices of Surge Success

The right wing blogosphere is spinning itself into an orgasmic tizzy over the wonderful and brilliant "surge" of US troops in Iraq. We hear the cacophony of wingnuts shouting "shame on you" collectively at war opponents and specifically at liberals for their treasonous lack of faith in the great Bush and even greater General Petraeus. Indeed, the headlines from Iraq show a marked decrease in casualties for Iraqi's and American GI's.

What pro war folks gloss over is the fact that the violence has simply returned to the level before sectarian warfare became so extreme in 2006 and early 2007. They also gloss over the 4 million Iraq's who have left their homes for another country or a safer place inside Iraq-- not to mention the segregated "ethnic and sectarian cleansing" in Baghdad and elsewhere in Iraq.. The city of Baghdad is a walled off maze of Sunni and Shiite civilians huddled together in self-protective enclaves. Here is an article from the Inter-Press Service written from the perspective of residents of the Middle East.
IRAQ: Less Violent But Not Less Hellish
By Ali al-Fadhily and Dahr Jamail*

FALLUJAH, Jan 11 (IPS) - U.S. and Iraqi officials claim that security is improving across al-Anbar province and much of Iraq. Security during the last half of 2007 was indeed better than in the period between February 2006 and mid-2007. But this has brought little solace to many Iraqis, because violence is still worse than in 2005 and early 2006

Violence levels are down, but attacks have not ceased. "Nine U.S. soldiers were killed in 24 hours, U.S. B-1 and F-16 bombers dropped over 40,000 pounds of special munitions on the Arab Juboor villages just south of Baghdad, and Awakening (militia paid for by the U.S.) leaders and senior police officers are being assassinated all over Iraq, yet U.S. army leaders and top officials say Iraq is safe and sound," lawyer and human rights activist Mahmood al-Dulaimy told IPS.

Dulaimy said U.S. President George W. Bush has succeeded in convincing many people in the United States that everything in Iraq is all right. "It is you media people who fool the world by transmitting false news about the situation in Iraq," Dulaimy said. "Look around you and tell me what is good here."

If you believe like I do, that the Iraq invasion was a big con by Bush and his neocon cohorts to run a kind of mad experiment to spread democracy in the Middle East, then Mr. Dulaimy viewpoint is no surprise. The only thing that has really changed is shifting politics in an area that has been in violent turmoil for the past 1400 years since the Shia split from the original base of Islam. The only periods of relative peace has been from iron fisted dictators like Saddam. No foreign power has ever been able to govern with cohesion the peoples of Mesopotamia. I would guess that even the most starry eyed wingnut idealist for American hegemony has had this cold truth penetrate their thick skulls. This is where it comes full circle within our own democracy. The American people have figured out what a huge error was made and want it corrected. By all indications they are set to do that come next November. The ugliness we see are from the neocons and Bush's 30% supporters that must keep the illusion of victory in Iraq alive for their own political survival.
******************************************************Some more of the article
"Is it good that we still cannot go to Baghdad to sell our crops and buy seeds and other necessary things for our farms," said young Jassim from Fallujah. "Is it good that we only plant ten percent of our land because there is not enough electricity and fuel to run our pumps?"

Many people in Fallujah say they simply want the U.S. forces to leave. "If the U.S. generals mean they will hand over security to Iraqis and leave the province, then I will salute them all," retired Iraqi army colonel Salman Ahmed told IPS in Fallujah. "But I know it is just another comedy like that played elsewhere in Iraq, where Iraqis (officials) are just ropes for American dirty laundry. We want our country back for real, not just on paper.

"We want our country back for real, not just on paper". Indeed, Mr. Ahmed, we here in America can only imagine the horrors the Iraqi people have been through. First, from a brutal dictator, then from American idiots sated with delusions of grandeur and utter incompetence. We here in America, want our country back also, Mr Ahmed.

full article

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