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Cry Me A Riverbend II

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Day In the Life of Iraq at the BBC

The BBC has a new daily log of Iraqis. They tell what they do each day and sometimes answer questions. Here are the contributors (as described on the BBC site):
Yasmin Abdul Aziz is a 29-year-old doctor. She lives in Baghdad and is not married. The main part of her work is for the national inoculation programme run by the Iraqi Health Ministry.

Sarab al-Delaymi is a housewife living in the al-Dorah area of Baghdad. She is in her late 30s, married and a mother.

Dhia Abdulwahab
is a civil servant living in Baghdad. He is in his late 40s, married and a father.

Rana Imad is an Iraqi medical student and researcher, living in Baghdad. She is Shia Muslim. She returned to Iraq after living in Britain for several years following the invasion of Iraq and the fall of Saddam Hussein.

Samir Ali
is 29 and an Iraqi doctor who lives and works in Baghdad. He supports his mother and sister. He is thinking of leaving Iraq for a better life abroad, but his mother does not want him to go.

Stuart Ritchie is a 61-year-old UK citizen and a contractor working for an international company in the International or Green Zone in Baghdad. He has lived and worked outside the UK for more than 30 years.

Lieutenant Bryan Suits
is an officer in the US Army's 1st Battalion, 161st Infantry Regiment currently in Baghdad. His is a National Guard battalion from Washington State attached to the 1st Cavalry Division. When he's not on active duty he is a radio talk show host in Seattle in the United States.

CMAR II says "check it out".

Monday, November 29, 2004

7 Suicide Cars Found in Iraq Mosque

My church organizes Bible studies and soup kitchens for the homeless.
I guess there are churches and then there are churches:

A mosque raided by security forces in southern Baghdad contained a workshop to rig suicide car bombs, with seven vehicles ready for terror attacks, an Iraqi Defense Ministry official said Sunday.

National Guard forces raided the Sunni Muslim Al-Yassen Mosque in the Baghdad area of Abu Dshir on Saturday, said Gen. Saleh Sarhan. In addition to the seven cars, guardsmen found 30 rocket-propelled grenades, high-powered rifles, mortars and remote control detonators, Sarhan said.

Faiza speculates in her latest post

Faiza ruminates:

There is that who decided to make Iraq a burning inferno, for an open period of time, without a limit. No reconstruction, no building, no projects, no new constitution, no new state, and no new Iraq, no life at all… under the slogan: Fight, fight, and fight…..until the occupation forces move out of here.

I do not know whether this is an Iraqi faction who loves Iraq, and want the best for it…or it is a foreign faction, who has other interests…

Faiza? It's your son.

Classic Raed Post

The old Raed has resurfaced. The bizarre self-contradictory logic...the inscrutable P.O.V. The only thing this one lacks is the maniacal laugh.

Raed shows pictures of a neighborhood flooded by crude oil due to terrorists blowing up a pipeline. Raed (self-styled "secular Muslim" ha ha ha), following the lead of the Saudi theocracy, suggests the act was perpetrated by the Jews! He inexplicably ties this act to a governmental failure to provide utilities to residents. And, finally, he asserts that this is not an attack on Iraq and the Iraqis but against DICK CHENEY.

Raed, I don't know who has been writing your posts lately, but we're glad to have you back.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Hmmmm...I thought it seemed awfully quiet around here

I specifically remember setting up the Comments section and the way I set it up. But when I examined them just now, they were all wrong.

My apologies to those who took time to comment only to discover that you couldn't, or that your comments weren't saved. If you notice any problems in the future please let me know via email (crymeariverbendii(at_symbol)yahoo.com) or by Yahoo! Instant Messenger: crymeariverbendii

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Light Posting Warning: Happy Thanksgiving

Can't post and eat turkey at the same time.

Even if you aren't American, go ahead and give thanks to God for what you have.


Slideshow....All the details on Fallujah

Where the slaughter houses were....what they found there.

Where the mosques were that were used as forts and weapons depots...what they found there.

Where the war crimes were committed and what they did.

What the IIG is doing to bring humanitarian relief to Fallujah.

(Hat-tip Ladybird)

Fallujehn Terrorist Song Translated

It was translated by Ladybird and posted by Keld Bach's Press Cutting.

It begs to be fisked.

Disclaimer: Note that I made modest corrections of grammar in LB's translation - but I do recognize that she speaks English a heck of a lot better than I speak Arabic. Also, neither LB or Keld claim to be endorsing the sentiments behind this song, they are just reporting. By the same token, I'm not responding to them, only to the writers of this song.


Long live the people of Fallujha
We will write it in poems
The whole people of Anbar cheers them
With God's support and their effort our city is protected
They hit America where it hurts

Long live the people of Fallujha
Every one is as a wolf
If they locked the enemy, they will never fall with shooting,
All women get pregnant and deliver
But nothing like the mothers of Fallujha:
They deliver heroes

"US and Iraqi troops have discovered kidnappers’ lairs filled with corpses or emaciated prisoners half-mad with fear, and piles of bodies of men who had refused to fight with the insurgents. As the guerrillas run their last sprint from death, sympathy for their cause is running out among

What can you say on the people of the city
Who protected their borders
And painted the “White House” in black-prayers
The people of Fallujha, they don’t need witnesses
All the media talking about their achievement

Hey! Guardian! Le Monde! New York Times!
Al-Jazeerah! MSM! They're talking about you!

The news from Fallujha is joyful
The soil of city became a grave to our enemy
Fire surround the city and the city is just like an oven for them
We will disembowel them [the enemy]

In the south of Fallujah yesterday, US Marines found the armless, legless body of a blonde woman, her throat slashed and her entrails cut out. Benjamin Finnell, a hospital apprentice with the US Navy Corps, said that she had been dead for a while, but at that location for only a day or two. The woman was wearing a blue dress; her face had been disfigured. It was unclear if the remains were the body of the Irish-born [humanitarian] aid worker Margaret Hassan, 59, [...] married [an Iraqi] and held Iraqi citizenship.

Long live the men who offer themselves and their blood
We will write them poems and build memorials to them
The men who stand very firm deserves a statue

Cheers to the men who aren't afraid of death
And walked into the fire e
ach one equal hundred
If they hear the call, the people of Fallujha will be there if you need them

Cheers to the men who always have been followed by vultures.

It's a little too easy to say why those vultures are really following them

I pray for the people who don’t sleep to keep the effort
Of implementing horror and shock in the heart of the enemy
They rise all against the enemy's aggression

"They kidnapped a wounded policeman from the hospital and cut him into pieces and then hung him up..."

They became a fire and a smoke in the eyes of the enemy

Parts of Mosul were set ablaze last week when insurgents ransacked and torched about 10 police stations in coordinated attacks, panicking police who abandoned their posts.
The policemen, discovered in an industrial area not far from the scene of some of the worst clashes in Mosul, appeared to have been killed by a bullet to the head, an AFP correspondent said.

Four of the corpses were also badly burned, the correspondent said. Senior Iraqi and US military sources said they probably belonged to an Iraqi army unit that had joined US troops for a massive onslaught against insurgents in the country's third-largest city. With US attack helicopters and soldiers covering them, Iraqi national guardsmen retrieved the bodies.

"These are not my men. They all have IDs from outside Baghdad. It seems they had been on leave and were returning to their barracks," said Lieutenant Colonel Ammar Abdelhadi.

A witness said he saw gunmen execute some of the men who were found dead.

Their deeds are just like praying and fasting Ramadan
Their deeds make us stand tall their deeds are real Arab courage
Their weapons are part of their souls
They sacrifice their fortune and children because of their land

Repeat chorus:
We will write them a telegram and send a message
"Long live the people of Fallujha, the strongest men”

People still get telegrams? What is this, 1880?

South Baghdad? Meet Fallujeh

The Iraqi Arab Sunnis insist on being taught what the Taliban already learned:

If you harbor terrorists, you will share their fate.

Monday, November 22, 2004

Hammorabi wants states that sponsor terrorism to pay compensation to the victims in Iraq

Nice idea, Hammy.

I would be satisfied with seeing the thieves who accepted stolen money from the Iraqi Oil For Food program (France, Russia, U.N., most of the Middle Eastern nations, a British politician) to

Faiza launches a grand pageant of dim-wits

Mostly Kerryites bemoaning that their candidate lost. (Like Faiza doesn't have enough troubles)

I know Faiza is a whiner but these guys make her look positively staunch.

Get. Over. It.

The BBC on Iraqis Opinions of the Fallujeh Assault

Naturally the BBC gives those critical top billing, but read on. This is actually a quite balanced article.

Say "Hello" to Some Real-Live Bad Asses

(Hat-tip to INDC Journal)

I'm not much of Time reader usually, but I think I'll pick this one up.

[UPDATE] A Marine's account of the attack on Fallujeh. godahmighty.
(Hat-tip Andrew Sullivan)

As the Marines cleared and apartment building, they got to the top floor and the point man kicked in the door. As he did so, an enemy grenade and a burst of gunfire came out. The explosion and enemy fire took off the point man's leg. He was then immediately shot in the arm as he lay in the doorway. Corporal Yeager tossed a grenade in the room and ran into the doorway and into the enemy fire in order to pull his buddy back to cover. As he was dragging the wounded Marine to cover, his own grenade came back through the doorway. Without pausing, he reached down and threw the grenade back through the door while he heaved his buddy to safety. The grenade went off inside the room and Cpl Yeager threw another in. He immediately entered the room following the second explosion. He gunned down three enemy all within three feet of where he stood and then let fly a third grenade as he backed out of the room to complete the evacuation of the wounded Marine. You have to understand that a grenade goes off within 5 seconds of having the pin pulled. Marines usually let them "cook off" for a second or two before tossing them in. Therefore, this entire episode took place in less than 30 seconds.

[UPDATE] 'Nother first hand account

Allawi Orders a Probe Into the Mosque Raid

This seems to be mostly precipitated by Sistani's condemnation of the raid.

I hope this doesn't mean Allawi is backing off his decision to hold clerics that advocate terrorism as in league with the terrorists.

Sistani keeps his mouth shut as terrorists roam the country and shoots it off when someone tries to do anything about it. Yeah, we have clerics like that in the US too.

Is the US going to Force Iraq Farmers to Buy Genetically Modified Seeds From US Corporations Rather Than Saving Seeds From Their Last Harvest?

This is what Ladybird is concerned about over at Baghdad Dweller.

What has her up in arms is an article by GRAIN that claims just that:

A new report by GRAIN and Focus on the Global South has found that new legislation in Iraq has been carefully put in place by the US that prevents farmers from saving their seeds and effectively hands over the seed market to transnational corporations.

What? Iraqi farmers will be forced to use genetically-modified, patented seeds ("frankenfoods) from corporations rather than the organically pure strains they've inherited from their ancestors??

I'm posting below the relevant text of the law in question. I'd like to get a patent attorney's view of this law, but it seems to me this is what GRAIN has done:

What GRAIN has done is to take one phrase the law...

Farmers shall be prohibited from re-using seeds of protected varieties or anyvariety mentioned in items 1 and 2 of paragraph (C) of Article 14 of this Chapter.

...and pretend it says

Farmers shall be prohibited from re-using seeds

That's bunk. There's nothing to prevent farmers from using totally naturally derived seeds. But what many seed providers in developing nations have done is to market patented varieties as their own or to create seed hybrids varieties from patented varieties. Possibly Iraqi farmers have PURCHASED these pirated seeds (note: they did not inherit these varieties from their ancestors).

What's really hypocritical of GRAIN is that they are against ANY genetically modified seeds. This is like saying...

The US is going to FORCE Iraqi businesses to buy bad ol' Microsoft Windows rather than use organically pure PIRATED versions of that product.

So the US wants Iraq to observe reasonable patent law. Boy, that's sure to drag the country into the dark ages.

The following is the relevant text of the law:

1. The varieties which are essentially derived from the protected variety where the protected variety is not itself an essentially derived variety. The variety is considered essentially derived from another variety according to the following criteria;

a) it is predominantly derived from the initial variety, or from a variety that is itself predominantly derived from the initial variety while retaining the expression of the essential characteristics that result from the genotype or combination of genotypes of the initial variety;

b) it is clearly distinguishable from the initial variety; and

c) except for the differences which result from the act of derivation, it conforms to the initial variety in the expression of the essential characteristics that result from the genotype or combination of genotypes of the initial variety. If it is similar to the original variety as for its main properties resulting from the hereditary composite or a group of the hereditary composites for the original variety, except what is related to the differences resulting from the derivation;

2. The varieties which are not clearly distinguishable from the protected variety in accordance with paragraph (B) of Article 4 of this Chapter; and

3. The varieties whose production requires the repeated use of the protected variety.

D. It shall be permissible to obtain the essentially derived varieties as a result of
the selection of a natural or induced mutant, or of a somaclonal variant, the
selection of a variant individual from plants of the initial variety, backcrossing, or transformation by genetic engineering.

E. The third party's performance of the acts provided in paragraphs (A) and (B) of this Article shall be deemed as an infringement of the rights of the breeder and
shall be subject to penalties if the defendant knew, or had reason to know, that the defendant infringed the rights of the breeder.”

66) Chapter Threequater, Article 15 is added to read as follows:

“A. Notwithstanding Article 14 of this Chapter, the breeder's right shall not include the following acts of third parties for personal non-commercial purposes, for purposes of experimentation or education of new varieties.

B. Farmers shall be prohibited from re-using seeds of protected varieties or any variety mentioned in items 1 and 2 of paragraph (C) of Article 14 of this Chapter.”

Kevin Sites Attempts To Explain His Actions

I was already aware of Kevin Sites as a war reporter who attempted to be fair and balanced with the troops. I will attest that and concur with him in that regard.

He seems to be saying "The soldier may have done what he was trained to do (but maybe not). I did what I was trained to do as a reporter - deliver a scoop." (these are my words)

However, still as I maintained here, in another war against evil, the reporters of legend saw things differently. Then again, back then the military heavily censored everything reporters sent back, so knows?

Whatever. What's done is done. We shall see how the tragedy of the killing of this harmless, innocent terrorist plays out for this young Marine.

[UPDATE] American Soldier posts an open letter to Kevin Sites. AS and I seems to think a lot alike. I wonder if he has the other half of this talisman...

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Vannessa Redgrave and brother Corin form a political party devoted to pulling British troops out of Iraq

Great. Just when American celebrities have slinked back into their Beverly Hills holes, the British ones come out of the woodwork:
"I think it's a healthy sign," [Corin Redgrave] said by telephone from the northern city of Newcastle. "If artists, actors, musicians and writers just felt they ought to be celebrities and shut up, then the world would be a pretty awful place to be."

For whom?
Corin says he was discriminated against as an actor in the 1970s and 1980s
because of his Marxist affiliations, while his father, Michael, was temporarily
blacklisted by the British Broadcasting Corporation for his communist

Uh oh. I think I'm starting to tear up. Like there should be a law requiring people to work with freedom-hating Marxists?

Familis have difficulties getting details on the fates of killed and kidnapped Coalition contractor

Apparently its not the military's job to inform families regarding this sort thing...it's the hiring company. That's understandable, but I think Congress should set some rules requiring them to do so.

Civilians killed by Marines When Van Ignores Checkpoint

Every time I read another one of these stories I'm horrified and befuddled. I just don't understand how this happens. Why would anyone ignore demands to stop at a checkpoint?

Zeyad reports on the scene

His neighborhood is overrun by blackhooded terrorists. Shooting, explosions, etc.

Keep your head down, Zeyad. Keep your eyes open.

Oh, yeah. And thanks for the report.

Terrorists Attack a Baghdad Police Station with RPGs

Remember what Professor Pussyfoote says:
The "insurgents" are freedom fighters warring against the occupation of their country. They aren't trying to undermine any legitimate Law and Order in order to have Chaos reign in Iraq. If they were doing that then we might have to think they're criminal beasts trying bring in a dictatorship. But they would never want that.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

There's a moral here if you can just see it...

Okay. In These Times published an article by Rashid Khalidi. It's a story of Fallujah fighting against a western imperialist colonizer (the British) in 1920. The British bombed it indiscriminately. Of course the British were driven out. Moral? The US clearing out of the terrorists from Fallujeh proves that attempt to bring democracy to Iraq is doomed.

But Iraq the Model has pointed out one lil' ol' problem with this fable. It ain't true.

I'll add something else that doesn't fit. The Marines and the ING are not bombing Fallujeh indiscriminately. They're taking out the terrorists house to house, mosque to mosque, school to school, hospital to hospital. When the ghouls wander out into the streets, the Marines are taking them out with snipers -- the most discriminating of methods in the world.

Then there's that small insignificant point that the US isn't an Empire and it isn't a colonizer.

Is Beheading Now Part of Sunni Religious Services?

Hammorabi reports:
Unconfirmed news that the Wahabi terrorists beheaded two ING in front of the worshipers in one of the Sunniah Mosques in Mosel!

Who are the Marines and ING fighting in the Sunni Triangle?

Oh yeah! Now I remember: THE DEVIL!

Marines kill 15 terrorists and arrest 45 more

The Continuing War Against Terrorists In Iraq

  • Ramadi: U.S. troops kill 9 and wound 4 terrorists (if the AP is going to refer to all terrorist casualties as "Iraqis", then I'm going to just count them all as terrorist kills)
  • Mosul: 30 suspected terrorists arrested. 4 decapitated bodies found. 9 ING casually captured and executed by terrorists (7 were also decapitated).
  • Fallujeh: Terrorists waved a white flag of surrender before opening fire on U.S. troops and causing casualties
  • Kirkut: Terrorists blew up an oil well (sixth such attack in last 10 days)
  • In Baqouba: Terrorists murder an Iraqi police colonel and his driver
  • Qaim: Terrorists mortar a U.S. base causing no casualties
  • Baghdad: Terrorists kill 4 employees (one a woman) of the Iraqi Ministry of Public Works (three worked in the office in charge of urban planning.
  • A homocide bomber blew himself up on a busy commercial street, killing 1 civilian and injuring another.
  • Baghdad (Amiriyah): 3 ING killed by roadsides bombs
  • Baghdad: 1 US soldier Killed, 9 wound in ambush
  • Baghdad: 5 US soldiers killed by "car bombing" (homocide bomber?)
  • Baghdad (Tamim): U.S. troops sealed off roads and launched a house-to-house search as loud speakers urge residents to hand over the any terrorists.
  • Germany and the United States announced agreement on a deal forgiving 80 percent of Iraq's foreign debt
  • The United States has been pushing for a generous write-off of as much as 95 percent of Iraq's debt.

Long Live Free Fallujah by Stephen Schwartz

Adopt A Sniper Website

Supporting those who rid the world of terrorists one bullet...and one terrorist...at a time.

Polish Female Hostage Released

German Politician Plans to Introduce Legislation to Require Imams to Only Speak German in Their Sermons

Germany...Let's go over this one more time:

A) Fight the terrorists in the dictatorships where they are grown.


B) Fight them when they come to your own country

Could Kidnapping Be Driving Iraqi Intellgencia Out of Iraq?

So says Saleem A.H. at 'Free Iraq'

Mosul Government Discriminating Against Kurds and Non-Muslims

A few days ago all the Moslem children in the schools were giving school bags containing pens, pencils etc, the Kurdish children were told that they would have to get them from the Kurdish Government. The young girls have been told they have to wear the Hijab, which is the long black dress and the covering of the head and shoulders.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Ali at 'Iraq The Model' Gives Pres. Chirac Both Barrels

Poetry Corner at Big Pharoeh

Khalid Jarrar is not the only one with a muse.

In Sunni Triangle: $3000 Bounty for Killing Americans, $1000 for Killing Shiites

According to Jaber, insurgent leaders in the area offer cash bounties for killing certain kinds of people: $1,000 for a Shiite, $2,000 for a member of the Iraqi National Guard and $3,000 for an American.


Al-Mahdi blames Wahhabis, an extreme sect of Sunni Islam dominant in Saudi Arabia, for encouraging and funding operations aimed at Shiites in Iraq.

Christian Science Monitor Tries To Decide What To Call Terrorists In Iraq

France and Britain at loggerheads over Iraq

Iraqi troops prepare for assault on Mosul

French Insurgents Killed In Iraq

Crack Down On Houses Of Hate

US & Iraqi forces storm a mosque in Baghdad to arrest a cleric who has been exorting worshippers to terrorism. Apparently the worshippers brought more than copies of the Quran because a shoot-out ensued.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

My last word on the innocent harmless terrorist killed by a Marine

The shooting of an unarmed Iraqi was a tragedy. But was it a war crime?
By Owen West and Phillip Carter

The Watchdogs of Fallujah
by Bing West

[Update] Marine Just Doing His Job
by Diana West (Washington Times)

[Update] Power Line Blog posts a message from a Baghdad resident regarding his opinion of the killing of the poor innocent, harmless terrorist:
I just got of the phone with my father in Baghdad. I asked him what is the reaction of the Marine killing the injured Iraqi in the Mosque in Felujah. His first words were "Good riddance."

Incidentally they also post a link to Diana West's article so I guess we're reading the same stuff.

[Update] When the Margaret Hassan video is available on the net, I will post a link to it AND one of the Marine shooting the innocent harmless terrorist. But not until then.

I've said here and here and here that my considered opinion is that that Marine's action was a tragedy for him and and a minor setback in the broad scope of things for our efforts in Fallujeh. But it was not a crime. If you're still unconvinced by me, then you should read the articles above from that leftist rag, Slate.com.

It strikes me as absurd that this Marine might be in any way punished for killing that "innocent" terrorist that had only just before been shooting at them from that mosque (kiss my sphincter, Riverbend and Khalid and all your Saddam-whoring families!) as though a wounded terrorist never killed anyone; as though a wounded terrorist never pulled a grenade when a soldier got close enough to check on him.

Here's what I think of the job performance of Kevin Sites, the photographer who filmed the scene:

If I had been in his shoes, I would have erased the tape and reported the action to the soldier's commanding officer. That would be it. The Marine committed no crime, used instincts that could have saved his unit in similar situations, and certainly did not cost Iraq any thing but a single woman-slaughtering, car-bombing, house-mortaring terrorist.

Kevin Sites has, in his own little way, done the following:

  • Hurt the Marines who may die by pausing a little too long before shooting,
  • Hurt the cause of Iraqi democracy by giving it's enemies something to crow about.
If this post gets read in a newsroom somewhere, I'm sure I'll hear their gasps all the way to my little office. But their legendary reporter heroes of WWII would not have put out this sort of propaganda to help the Nazis.

[Update] Zeyad is unimpressed with arguments like mine. He says:

We also watched with horror the video of the Marine soldier shooting an injured Iraqi inside a Fallujah mosque. Everyone in Baghdad was talking about the incident. The casual manner in which it was done suggests that this was not something out of the ordinary.

I heard all the justifications from the US military; insurgents were placing booby traps on their dead and injured, the soldier was disturbed, he had a bad day, etc. None of them stand the test. This was a vile and despicable act, a crime of war, pure and simple. True, the man might have been a foreign fighter, a potential suicide bomber, a baby killer, whatever, but he might have also been an injured civilian caught in cross fire during the heat of battle crawling to what he perceived a safe area. Such questions are irrelevant in war, though. We can write a whole book about the subject but it would still achieve nothing.

Whatever, Zeyad. It didn't seem to be done "casually" to me. Maybe people are more high-strung in Zeyad's family and seem to be "freaking out" in normal conversation.

I don't think it likely the guy was a non-combatant, but if he were, it is still not a war crime or an atrocity. If one side in a war zone starts using ambulances as troop carriers and bombs (a war crime), and ambulances lose their military targeting exemption because of that which then caused a legitimate ambulance driver with a sick patient to get killed....it's not the fault of the soldier who shot him. It's the fault of the war criminals who used ambulances as troop carriers and the fault of the war criminal terrorists using wounded and dead (and pretended so) as bombs.

Director of Red Crescent Denies They Were Turned Back From Fallujeh by the Marines

Cartoon from Cox & Forkum

Slideshow of the operation in Fallujeh

Note the second slide which shows 40 vials (viles) of Saren gas found in a weapons safehouse.

Gosh! Why couldn't the Marines have waited to invade? Why not send in inspectors firsts?

Captain Ed is tracking this story.

What to do about those Sunni Arabs?

Anthony Shahid reports on the trouble in the Sunni Arab portion of Mosul. The Fallujehn Arab Sunni cleric Abdullah Janabi has vowed to turn Iraq "into one big Fallujeh". He says,

"The Americans have opened the gates of hell".

Yes, and when we did, we found the imp Janabi grinning back at us.

Only a 1000 of the 5000 police force in Mosul have returned to their posts.

Gen. George Casey says,

"Fallujah is no longer a terrorist safe haven. That's a major accomplishment with the Iraqi security forces and for the coalition forces, and it's a major way ahead for Iraq."

Perhaps. But what do to about the haven the Sunni Arabs are making for the terrorists in their hearts? How many Sunni Arabs cities will have to be levelled before they agree to sign on to Iraq's future?

Head of US-funded Iraqi TV resigns

He's quitting in part because the Defense Department is contracting talent and shows from outside the country.
Al-Mashta cited the LBCI's "Al-Mumayazun" Game Show which is costing Al-Iraqiya 28,000 dollars per show, while he estimated that a similar program could be shot in Iraq for around 3,000 dollars.

This seems to reflect a continuing problem in Iraq. Workers could be hired much more cheaply within the country. This would put more people to work, improving the economy and undermining support for the chaos-lovers. But US law seems to require that DoD hire US companies. We need a change in the law in this regard and quickly for the sake of Iraqis and the US taxpayers.

Military Intel Report says Pulling Out From Fallujeh Will Strengthen the Terroists


General John DeFreitas, the senior military intelligence officer in Iraq says,

"We have no intention of creating a vacuum and walking away from Fallujah."

Ansar Al-Sunna threatens to assassinate candidates and voters in upcoming elections

More Iraqi Innocents Killed by Insurgents

Four of them died outside of the city of Samarra and three more near Baiji, a day after 14 people, mostly women and children, were killed and 26 wounded there in clashes and another bomb attack.

Troops Think They've Found Zarqawi's Hideout

The odds of an insurgents' survival against the USMC

Jason at CounterColumn has posted an explanation of why there are so many insurgents killed compared to US Marines.

Baghdad Dweller Blog

This is a great blog.

Here we learn:

  • That the murdered Margret Hassan was the blogger's english teacher
  • We see a playground built by Dutch forces during the crushing of the terrorists in Baghdad
  • A list of hostages executed thus far in Iraq
  • Thoughts on Mosul and Fallujeh and everything Baghdad.
Balanced, reason, informative, enjoyable.

New Email At Cry Me A Riverbend II

I've had to set up a brand new email address. It's on the sidebar to the right -->

If you've sent me an email in the last few months, I haven't seen it. But please send it again to the new address.

New Post at Big Phaeroh

GM is back from his trip and seems to agree with me (and many many others) about the Sunni problem in Iraq:
As for Iraq, it appears that there is a mega problem with the Sunnis. I can roughly assume that Sunnis in Iraq are divided into 2 segments: people who need a leader and people who do not need a leader. Those who do not need a leader are the secularist Sunnis and the educated who will follow their minds and go out to vote next January (provided that they go to the polls alive). In addition, they own the blogs we read everyday. Those who need a leader are leaderless. They are religious and they are upset that now after hundreds upon hundreds of years Shias suddenly became a major force in Iraq. Not all of them are insurgents of course, but support for insurgents is considerable among this group.

Shias have Sistani, Kurds have the 2 major parties, Sunnis who need a leader have a leader in prison. Those who claim to represent the Sunni population are either terrorists, Sunni clerics who sympathize with terrorists, and Islamic parties that felt the crush when Fallujah was attacked. Up until now no Sunni who can have a major influence stood up and said “OK, it’s over, Saddam is over, all out Sunni rule over Iraq is over, if we wanna have a stake in this country, we better drop the gun and pick up the ballot.”

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Response to Last Commie of the West

In the comments section of Raed's site, I told Last Commie Of The West

If that's true, then Germany was a puppet regime until 1989 since it relied on US forces to protect it from the Soviet Union. For that matter, I could say the same for all of Europe.

Last Commie of the West responded:

And to a certain degree I would agree with you, we were on a certain level of foreign policy a pupet of the US - I'm speaking of Germany not for the rest of Europe, I leave that to others.But the Soviet Union, was an exclusively outside threat.I know, the answer from you well be that all (or most of) the insurgence are coming from the outside. If this is the problem, then why aren't you able to close, or at least controll, the broder properly? Instead of blaming the Syrians for not doing enough - and I agree that Syria has not done all it could (presumably because they have an interest in Iraq not getting stabilised), but even if they did, they hardly have the finaces and power to do it anyway.

Oh! I didn't realize when I said that that you yourself were German. And it's nice to see that I can even agree with the Last Commie in the West. I feel so retro! My response is three-fold.

  1. I disagree that Germany was a puppet regime. Was the public influenced in its voting and priorities by having another nation devote so many resources its protection? Probably. But that just means Germans were voting with their own security in mind.

  2. Iraq has a lot of border to patrol. We can't even keep peaceful immigrants from Mexico from crossing our own borders.

  3. I don't believe that most of the insurgency comes from outside. Many of the weapons and finances come from outside...there are some foreign fighters but many of them (like Zarqawi) were invited in by Saddam and hedged his power. I don't consider that outside.

    The problem is that we can't get enough Iraqis (especially the Sunni Arabs) to take the initiative in reporting, let alone crushing, terrorist cells in their own neighborhoods and mosques. I DO believe that the Sunni Arabs and certain other minority communities (like the Palestinians) considered their position in Iraq under Saddam to be better than those of other groups. Many look on that period with nostalgia. To firm up his power, Saddam fed that feeling whenever he could and fed fears of what would happen if the Shiya majority took control. The Sunnis are a minority but there are still millions of them. Its going to be difficult to get them to see that the new Iraq will be a blessing to them, and I don't think we're nearly there yet. I think many of them still believe that after the chaos, another Saddam will rise to treat them specially again.

    At the same time, most (or at least very many) of the Shiya have not yet seen how vital it is for them to take a hand in assuring the new Iraq is a success - and that the Coalition is a valuable tool for them accomplish that. It is not real to them how desperate things will get if the US gives up. They are used to a dictator doing everything for them, and don't see that a Free Country will require that they take personal initiative to put down trouble makers. Also, I suspect the imams are undermining support for the Coalition out of racial and religious prejudice. I've no doubt that Iran is throwing money around as well.

    Only the Kurds (who are mostly Sunnis) who have had the benefit of 12 years of mostly self-rule (thanks to the US and Britain, your welcome) have shown that they - as a group - recognized the stakes involved for them and what they must give to see a new free Iraq for their children. During the uprising in Mosul this weekend, the Kurdish side fought off the terrorists and was pieceful. The police stations on the Sunni Arab side did not. In fact many police helped in the chaos.

    So the road to stablizing Iraq is difficult and expensive which is why the US didn't invade it in 1991, choosing instead to keep Saddam in a box and hoping he would be overthrown. But it is and was necessary, and if anything, came a bit too late.

    But Europe has a lot at stake in seeing Iraq succeed as well, but, in the run up to the Iraq invasion, they seemed more interested in the state of the Kyoto agreement than in a menace who was leading Iraq in to a maelstrom and would soon be free (when they sanctions were dropped as they would be by now) to do the same to his neighbors and the rest of the world. Now it seems to me they would rather the satisfaction of seeing the US fail at something than to avoid having Iraq be divided up by terrorists. Even now, in their words and inactivity, they and many Americans lend support to the neo-Bathists and Islamofacists that their cause is just.

That is a 1000 mile high view of the difficulties in Iraq.

Saddam Paid for Suicide Bombers with Oil-For-Food Money

But of course, Saddam had no connection to terrorists. Oh, no! His was the only country in the Middle East -- in the world in fact-- that had not a single terrorist.

Marine Lance Cpl. Jeramy Ailes, 22

Belmont Club has some information on this Marine who died Monday in Fallujeh.

Iraqi "Civilian" claims that the Marines used chemical weapons in Fallujeh

I've no doubt that ignorant Arabs will believe this crock. But to me it smells of desperation after the Margret Hassan murder.

Incidentally, Al-Jazeera apparently had the Hassan Murder video since last Thursday. I can't imagine why they sat on it (smirk).

Ex-Spy "Anonymous" To be on 60 Minutes and Talk About OBL

French President Not Sure the World Is Safer Without Saddam

Khalid Jarrar writes a poem about the killing of the wounded man inside a mosque

You brought your filth into my masjid.

I've already written ad nausem about the absurdity of suggesting the Marines desecrated a mosque when the monsters inside using it as a fort and weapons depot. Furthermore, if the presence of deliberate pre-meditated kidnappers and murders of truly innocent people (unlike the terrorists themselves) wandering freely inside a mosque do not desecrate it, then I don't know what would.

Finally, I believe the terrorists' use of corpses and wounded (and the pretense of corpses and wounded) as bombs means that if any truely wounded and cooperative terrorist get shot and killed by Marines and ING, it is the TERRORISTS FAULT. Not the Marines, who are only trying to do their duty and not get blown up.

My discussion on Raed's comment page regarding the legality/illegality of shooting wounded soldiers in Fallujeh

You'll need to scroll down.

Letter from a Marine in Baghdad

Iranian Mullahs and Athiest Communist Chinese Get Cozy

I'm really not surprised.

French Bank Is a Focus of Oil Inquiry

A [U.S. House of Representatives] committee and an independent United Nations panel exploring fraud and abuse in the oil-for-food program are focusing on the role of BNP Paribas, a French bank that managed billions of dollars in Iraqi oil revenue for the program, according to investigators.

US Soldier killed in Ambush

The convoy, including a Bradley armored vehicle and two Humvees, was ambushed on its way to meet with a mayor and community leaders near Baghdad.

"Raymond's gun was the only one that was still working. He fought them to a bitter end," Henry White said.

The commander said White helped the convoy escape before being fatally wounded. His was the convoy's only death; two soldiers were wounded, as was an Iraqi interpreter, according to the Department of Defense.

"He always put others first," Henry White said.
Raymond White was last home on furlough in August. Henry White said his son talked then with pride about rebuilding Iraq.

I'm not sorry

Faiza posted an email from a reader directing her to www.sorryeverybody.com.

Here's an even more useful link.

Photos from Iraq

Katrina Kratovac (AP) reports from Baghdad

Why are there bodies rotting in the streets in Fallujeh?
Bullets snapped overhead as Iraqi body-collection workers supervised by the Marines sought cover behind walls and in buildings. After 15 minutes of fighting, three insurgents were dead and one Marine was slightly injured in the hand, officers said.

  • Suicide bomber in Beiji drives car in to US convoy, killing 10 wounding 9.
  • A "handful of small arms attacks" continue in Mosul
  • "In Ramadi, masked men clutching rocket-propelled grenades and Kalashnikov rifles took up positions on several streets and alleys in eastern and southeastern Ramadi"
  • Iraqi truck driver freed from kidnappers during a raid south of Baghdad
  • 3,000 protesters peacefully demanded the release of seven followers of Shiite Ayatollah Mahmoud al-Hassani

James Hider reports from Fallujeh

In the south of Fallujah yesterday, US Marines found the armless, legless body of a blonde woman, her throat slashed and her entrails cut out. Benjamin Finnell, a hospital apprentice with the US Navy Corps, said that she had been dead for a while, but at that location for only a day or two. The woman was wearing a blue dress; her face had been disfigured. It was unclear if the remains were the body of the Irish-born aid worker Margaret Hassan, 59, or of Teresa Borcz, 54, a Pole abducted two weeks ago. Both were married to Iraqis and held Iraqi citizenship; both were kidnapped in Baghdad last month.

US and Iraqi troops have discovered kidnappers’ lairs filled with corpses or emaciated prisoners half-mad with fear, and piles of bodies of men who had refused to fight with the insurgents. As the guerrillas run their last sprint from death, sympathy for their cause is running out among Iraqis.

Should we leave Fallujeh to the tender management of these serial killers?

Contacting me...

I cannot currently get into my email account. If anyone has left me messages and such I apologize for not answering them. If I don't succeed in accessing my account soon, I'll open a new one.

Hammorabi Reports:

At least 18 bodies have been found in Al Latyifyiah (South Baghdad) in an abandoned area. The decomposed bodies belong to the National Iraqi Guards and some of them are still in their uniform. Some were without heads and others killed by shooting.

Note: we know these ING were taken prisoner and executed afterward. One should remember the enemy that the Coalition, ING, and IP are fighting.

He also reports that Zarqawi has declared Sistanti to be the "leader of the Infidels and atheist". Perhaps this will encourage Sistani to finally choose between Allawi's version of Iraq's future or the militants.

Hammorabi's take on the killing of the wounded Iraqi is pragmatic and moral: "that person may have been a good source for more information and above all it is against the Geneva Convention."

I agree that a captive can be more useful than a corpse, but I'm not convinced yet that it was a violation of the Geneva Convention. Attacking a mosque, church, or synagogue is a war crime unless the enemy starts using them as forts or weapons depots. Shooting at ambulances is a war crime unless the enemy starts using them for military purposes. White flags are symbols of surrender and soldiers cannot shoot at someone waving it, unless the enemy has used white flags to arrange ambushes ans suicide bombings. In all these cases it is the enemy that is committing a war crime and any deaths occuring from mosques being attacked or ambulances being shot at or surrending combatants being mistakenly killed is the enemy's fault not the other side's. The neo-Bathists and Islamists have apparently done all these things.

My point (and I do have one) is that in a battle where the enemy is booby-trapping the wounded and dead; where suicide bombers are pretending to be wounded or dead, I'm not convinced that shooting a wounded combatant is a war crime. It strikes me that the fault lies in the bad judgement of the wounded combantant. He should not have joined a side that fights in a way that makes wounded combatants a reasonable military target.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Land HO! There LIES a River Bend!

I really wish I'd been blogging when this came out at Iraq The Model. He calls Riverbend a flat-out liar regarding cry-babying about the lack of electricity (since she bemoaned her state of electricty in her last blog I think it is pertinent). He doesn't say it's wonderful. He says that she lies to make every thing sound worse than it is and better than it was under "uncle Saddam".

For why Riverbend thinks everything was so peachy under Saddam, I recommend you to this.

The Fallujeh Liberation

I haven't blogged for a while. Why? Too dang busy. But I'm back so lets get to it.

A history of Fallujeh at Benador Associates (hattip to GM)

Riverbend is horrified at the killing of a wounded innocent harmless TERRORIST by a Marine in Fallujeh. She doesn't call him a terrorist, I admit. You'd think he was just at that mosque waiting for the bus. As always with Riverbend, there's no consideration of the nature of people the Marines and ING are fighting. People who booby trap dead bodies and suicide bombers who pretend to be dead bodies.

While we're on the subject of killing wounded unarmed people, Riverbend seems to be unaware of the Iraqi policeman in Mosul who was dragged from his bed, dismembered, and his body strung up in the square.

Along the same lines, an AP photographer tells of his harrowing escape from Fallujeh. The thing about this guys "story" is that in reading it, he never seems to meet an insurgent. You'd think the Coalition and ING came to Fallujeh just for the opportunity to shoot at civilians.

NPR reports on the killing too. With remarkable balance (for them), they also report on the the attempts by Marines to help meet the basic needs of the citizens in Fallujeh, but the insurgents are making it difficult. One man they treated was shot in the hand by the insurgents for refusing to store weapons for them. The title of this report is U.S. Military Attempts to Help Fallujah Civilians

Here's some more insurgent tactics (poor things!):

In one of the most dramatic clashes of the day, snipers fired on U.S. and Iraqi troops from the minarets of the Khulafah Al Rashid mosque, the military said. Marines said the insurgents waved a white flag at one stage but then opened fire, BBC's embedded correspondent Paul Wood reported. The troops called in four precision airstrikes that destroyed the minarets but left the mosque standing.

While Riverbend likes to keep it fuzzy just on whose she is on in the Iraqi struggle, it is quite clear whose side American Soldier is on regarding the killing of the wounded man in Fallujeh.

The Times Online reports on the paradise (smirk) that was Fallujeh under the
rule of those poor persecuted insurgents that Riverbend pities so much.

Another poster in the ruins of the souk bears testament to the strict brand of Sunni Islam imposed by the council, fronted by hardline cleric Abdullah Junabi. The decree warns all women that they must cover up from head to toe outdoors, or face execution by the armed militants who controlled the streets.

Two female bodies found yesterday suggest such threats were far from idle. An Arab woman, in a violet nightdress, lay in a post-mortem embrace with a male corpse in the middle of the street. Both bodies had died from bullets to the head.
Just six metres away on the same street lay the decomposing corpse of a blonde-haired white woman, too disfigured for swift identification but presumed to be the body of one of the many foreign hostages kidnapped by the rebels. It was initially thought to be either the body of Margaret Hassan, the Dublin-born aid worker with dual British and Iraqi nationality who was kidnapped last month...

Whether it was her or not, it looks pretty clear now that she is dead. (While we're on the subject of killing unarmed people who never did anyone any harm.) These are the poor souls that Riverbend crys big crocodile tears for.

Meanwhile, the Christian Science Monitor reports on how two blood-thirsty Marines were killed when they held their fire on insurgents because they had taken a family hostage.

Saleem A.H. considers the thinking behind the insurgents.

Zeyad describes how as the insurgent stronghold in Fallujeh was shattered, Iraqis in other parts of Iraq are getting the shards. He also says:
The 'resistance' only started after the de-Ba'athification and thedisbanding of the army and security forces which tells us a lot about the mentality of the 'freedom fighters' who claim to be fighting to end occupation.

Kurdo reports that while insurgents took over the western Arab districts of Mosul, the Eastern Kurdish district was kept insurgent-free by demobilized PUK. He also reports that the Marines have retaken the police stations in Mosul.

Egyptian blogger GM speaks of the importance of getting the Sunnis to see a stake for themselves in Irag.

Kevin Sites offers a pictures of the taking of Fallujeh.

Raed repeats the rumor that that the Coalition is suffering more casualties than it is admitting to.

Buffbabe has returned home from service Iraq.

Abu Khaleel explains the meaning of the expressions Inshallah and Mashallah.