Iraq update

Iraq update
: I was about to dig into the Iraqi blogs for an update. Doc beat me to it.

There are many new voices:

: Abu Hadi writes a guest blog at Zeyad’s place about returning to Baghdad. The dispatches are rich with detail about the neighborhoods and life of the city.

: Mina is another guestblogger at Zeyad’s, an Iraqi expat who spent 14 years in London and just returned to Baghdad.

: Fiona Katie is in Baghdad from London installing a/v equipment.

: Stan is her colleague, who just got to Baghdad.

: Salam Pax’ friend Raed at long last is blogging again.

: I repeat: What we need is blogging tools and hosts in Arabic. Then free speech will flourish.

: Following the atrocity in Fallujah, Iraqi blogger O says that, sadly, such horrid mutilation is not unknown in Iraqi history:

Since the Falluja incident, I have come across lots of Iraqis who were angry, shocked and surprised at what happened to the 4 Americans who have died. While, I totally understand the first 2 sentiments, I find Iraqis being surprised at what happened a bit bewildering. There are various examples within the recent history of Iraq where dead people had been treated in the same manner. In 1941, with aid of the occupying British forces the prince regent of Iraq managed to orchestrate a coup within the state and in the process ordered the execution of what was alleged to be pro-Germany Iraqi army officers, their bodies were hanged from lampposts in front of the defence ministry for days as an example for others. As fate would have it the prince regent himself died the same way in 1958 when the Iraqi army took over power.

: Zeyad agrees:

However, I believe that this is an exclusive Iraqi trait, and we have examples from our own recent history to prove it…. In the 1958 coup which overthrew the monarchy, the bodies of members of the royal Hashemite family together along with Noori Al-Saeed, prime minister under King Faisal II, were mutilated, dragged around the streets of Baghdad, and then hung to rot for days. Communists committed similar atrocities in Mosul and Kirkuk in 1959, ironically against Pan-Arabs, Ba’athists, and their supporters. Some Ba’athists did the same to Communists during their short lived coup in 1963. And again the Ba’athists after 1968, when they assumed power in Iraq for good, with a long list of atrocities against political adversaries, ‘enemies of the people’, ‘traitors’, ‘Zionist spies’, etc. Now they have resurfaced again it seems.

Zeyad also says:

Iraqis know very well who those ‘pious’ people are. They are gangsters, rapists, murderers, thieves, kidnappers, looters, and criminals. They are only using religion as cover. I can’t even dream of what would happen if those people were left to make trouble on our streets that way without punishment.

: Raed says of Fallujah: