Iraq updates

Iraq updates
: The uncivilized bastards are still holding three innocent Japanese civilians.

Fromthe bloggers:

: Zeyad has many updates from Baghdad: Sistani finally issues a fatwa calling for calm… Zeyad sees frightening parallels to the uprising against the British in 1920 and “it troubles me because that would mean that Iraqis have not matured as a people for the last hundred years” … more…

: Alaa advises:

I can tell you without any hesitation that you get a much better insight by reading us than all the media reports. Please don

  • Hmmm, do any of those bloggers mention thousands of obvious terrorists carrying food and supplies to break the siege of Fallujah today?
    Of course, as the story in the link mentions, there were people with guns breaking through the checkpoint as well. But it’s obvious from the pictures that the resistance/rebellion/whatever has more popular support than Jeff or the blogs he quotes are willing to admit.
    The hard question to be asked is, if al-Sadr is a gangster (which he is) and the Fallujah fighters are fanatics and/or fascists (which they probably are), then how did we botch things up so badly that the people are supporting them?

  • Faramin

    You never understand how it feels to be occupied by “civilized bastards”. Never.

  • warmi

    I have a feeling that Bush made a mistake going there.
    Seems that French implied policy that the Arabs are incapable of creating a modern democrating society is being confirmed.
    It wasn’t Saddam who created this sort of monster society capable of such cruelty – I think it was the other way around.
    They deserved each other.

  • Ga-ne-sha

    Yeah, Swopa, Lehrer had a report from a NYT reporter in which he claimed the civilians were taking blood in too, to be used in those terrorist hospitals in Fallujah. Then the reporter coincidentally happened onto a “caboose” tanker truck, apparently the end of a long military convoy, the reporter speculated, which had been attacked, set on fire, the attackers then “swarming” over the burning truck and celibrating.
    The reporter and his cameraman were just passing by, after doing a story on how the Shia were cooperating with the Suni, the vast supplies donated being brought to a Mosque, there to be filmed by the cameraman.
    Why is it that I don’t quite believe the report? Nor that people were “breaking through the checkpoint”, as you claim.

  • Ga-ne-sha

    Gettleman, the same guy. Right. NYT – NOT

  • A

    We are doing the right thing. Undoubtedly. The polls show the majority of the population want democracy. But the rest of the population still behaves like the mafia. I know its hard to be occupied but its a darn sight better than civil war.

  • Faramin-
    Better occupation by us “civilized bastards” than to fall to the rule of dictatorial, 20 something, theocrat riding more on his good father’s name than on his own accomplishments.

  • Mustapha

    Ostrich syndrome anyone? Ignoring facts that don’t fit? Quoting only pro-US bloggers (whatever happened to Riverbend, Raed…)
    Jeff, when you Americans get ejected from Iraq and the rest of the middle east will it come as a great surprise?
    4 “civilian” contractors killed is barbaric, but 300+ “uncivilized” Iraqis dead is OK right?
    Pride comes before the fall

  • Buzz

    Your ostrich syndrome cuts both ways. What you don’t understand is that we’re fighting to bring democracy to Iraq. In other words, if a group of Iraqis supported a dictatorship by Al Sadr, and another group supported a constitutional democracy, then we are there to support the democrats. There are many reasons for this position.
    (1) If another dictatorship is allowed to arise in Iraq, even if it has popular support today, it nixes the rights of all future Iraqis to choose their government. How can one guarantee the rights of Iraqis in perpetuity to choose their government without supporting the forces that in Iraq that support it?
    (2) The numbers are favorable. The last scientific poll conducted in Iraq clearly shows that the majority of Iraqis want US forces to stay precisely to help produce the kind of civil society that is not wracked by dictators or theocracies. These are the very forces with which the US marines are engaged today.
    (3) 300+ “uncivilized” Iraqis dead is not OK. It is vastly better than 20,000 Iraqis dead of all walks of life under Saddam and similar conditions sure to come if the Al Sadr mob comes to power. And it is disingenuous to equate those fighting to impose their will on others with four contractors who were there to free others.
    This last point deserves special mention. Your baiting moral equivalence of the four contractors and the hundreds of insurgents fighting for a theocratic dictatorship in Iraq prove you to be a leftist thinker on the level of a Noam Chomsky. It should be considered a reductio ab absurdum of the moral relativism of you and your ilk. Though if the blood of hundreds of millions of people sacrificed to Pol Pot, Stalin, and Mao don’t already do it for you, I am afraid you are beyond help.
    And please spare us all the lecture on pride. It is disingenuous to mention pride in a spirit of mocking those who are fighting against thugs who wrap their faces in towels while videotaping themselves holding a knife to the throat of an innocent sobbing Japanese woman, knowing full well that your side is depending on a lack of said pride to precipitate a pullout. It is laughable to think of the marines being “ejected” from Iraq.
    (But Mustapha, isn’t it great that you can post here for free without registration? Unlike the DailyKos or the Democratic Underground where posters are secure from reason, readers of Buzz machine know that trolls like you can be rebutted soundly and therefore don’t fear you.)

  • Buzz

    A side note: I have been posting here under the “Nom De Blog” of Buzz for some time now. I have no affiliation with BuzzMachine; it was merely a poorly thought out homage on my part.

  • Mustapha

    Fighting to bring democracy to Iraq
    That rather ironic statement basically sums up the contradictions in your words.
    20,000 dead under Saddam. No, actually more like a million killed in the Iran-Iraq war, which YOUR country supported when it was selling arms hand over fist to Saddam. The CIA first started paying Saddam in the 50’s, in an assassination attempt on the then-king. The chemical weapons attack on Halabja? Done while Saddam was a US ally, and brushed under the table. Why didn’t you invade Iraq then? The saving of life would have been far greater then. Are you conflating opposing foreign invasion to supporting Saddam? Don’t. We Muslims detested Saddam, and we detest you even more.
    Beyond that, who gives you the right to spread “democracy” to anybody? If the shoe was on the other foot, if Muslim soldiers were in America to establish what they believe in i.e. the establishment of the Shariah, would you call a good-ole-boy from Mississippi fighting against a foreign army a freedom fighter or a thug? I’m pretty sure I know the answer.
    And tell me: if by some (remote) chance completely free elections were held in Iraq, what would your reaction be to a religious Shia government that came to power? Because simply put, the numbers point to that as the most likely outcome.
    (As for defending left-wing sites, I happen to hate the left and right wing of Western colonialists equally. Although you don’t mention instapundit’s lack of comments; and the 2 sites you mention I unfortunately haven’t visited)

  • onecent

    then how did we botch things up so badly that the people are supporting them?
    Responsibility for lunatic followers?…….please, Jim Jones’s followers drank poison Kool-aid, the Hale Bop nuts committed suicide when the comet came, machete murdering Ruwandans committed tribal genocide……there are plenty of dysfuntional group in history that we have no responsibility for their behavior. Add tribal politics into the mix of religious intolerance and you’ve got what you are looking at now in Iraq. It wasn’t unanticipated.

  • Kat

    Mustapha–we are not responsible for the actions of muslims following the koran–if we were,, we should not be allies of any muslim nation. (Islamism is a power-obsessed ideology. Like other 20th century ”isms” – Communism, fascism, totalitarianism – it is radical, repressive, cruel, contemptuous of human rights, and deeply hostile to outsiders. Countries ruled by Islamists, such as Iran, Afghanistan, and Sudan, are among the most unfree places on earth. They strangle basic freedoms, oppress women, incubate terrorism, and persecute religious minorities.
    Islamist xenophobia and violence has many faces. In Sudan, the regime uses chattel slavery, forcible conversion, and mass murder as weapons in its ”jihad” – holy war – against black Africans in the south. Islamist gangs in Egypt carry out deadly pogroms against Coptic Christians. This summer, Afghanistan’s Taliban demolished ancient Buddhist works of art, then ordered every Hindu in the country to wear yellow identification badges. Terrorist networks like Osama bin Laden’s and Islamic Jihad place a premium on killing and wounding Americans. Death sentences are pronounced against authors – like Salman Rushdie or, more recently, the American Khalid Duran – who write books the Islamists don’t approve of. The litany is grim, the victims are many, and the threat is global. Jeff Jacoby)
    No, I do not want THAT for Iraq.

  • Sydney Carton

    “who gives you the right to spread “democracy” to anybody? If the shoe was on the other foot, if Muslim soldiers were in America to establish what they believe in i.e. the establishment of the Shariah, would you call a good-ole-boy from Mississippi fighting against a foreign army a freedom fighter or a thug? I’m pretty sure I know the answer.”
    As Kat mentioned above, radical Islam is the problem because it is an ideology that seeks to impose its hostility on the outside world with extreme force, and at the same time brutally oppresses its peoples. We are “imposing” democracy on Iraq because it is necessary to reform the Middle East to secure peace in the world. The time of the Dark Ages for Islam must end, if there can ever be any peace for the rest of the world, in America, in the Phillipines, in Israel, and elsewhere.
    In case you haven’t noticed, there is a Global War on Terror right now, because radical Islamists killed 3,000 people in America, are trying to acquire nuclear weapons in Iran, and are trying to prevent the reformation of the Middle East. These people don’t want to play nice, they don’t want to be left alone, they want to destroy western civilization, and they want to kill me and probably would kill you also.
    Democracy, by the way, is not just an election. Democracy involves respect for fundamental individual rights and does not involve persuading fellow citizens with threats of violence. Electing a dictatorship is not an exercise in democracy.
    Calling someone a “freedom fighter” doesn’t depend on which land they’re fighting on, it depends if they are actually fighting for freedom. Fighting for a system of enforced violent theocracy doesn’t make you a freedom fighter at all, it makes you a thug, no matter what land you’re on or whose side you’re on.

  • Buzz

    Here’s a link in the NYT describing what happened to the 4 civilian contractors in Fallujah: They were set up, lured into an ambush, and desecrated for the cameras of the world in a calculated move to embolden criminal gangs in Iraq as well as domestic critics of the war in the US.
    The sentiment “fighting to bring democracy to Iraq” is neither ironic nor false. Rather, you have instead shown that you do not understand democracy at all. Do you expect democracy to fall out of the sky? By democracy, I mean simply the capacity for people to decide for themselves how they are governed.
    What gives us the right? I could take the easy way out and point out that if we don’t have the right to impose our will upon others, the neither does Al Sadr, Saddam Hussein, nor anyone else. I only bring it up because it is the same kind of mealy mouthed weak logic that appeals to leftist louts. But that is the way of relativism whose logical consequence is to do nothing. And that is the philosophical underpinnings of your ilk: do nothing. Because behind the skirts of “do nothing” are hiding the Husseins, Al Sadrs, and other monsters of this world who only want us to do nothing so that they begin the great Islamic Anchluss.
    What gives us the right? If you lived next door to me, Mustapha, and you let your house become so decrepit so as to become an abode of rats and other vermin, and allowed in drug dealers and all manner of lowlife, and if it became a place of violence on top of all that so that it was a threat to me and my family, then I would petition the police and the city council to do something about you, and in the end if they did not do anything about you, then I would take matters into my own hands and chase out the vermin, lowlifes, and maybe even you if you tried to stop me.
    What gives us the right? The decrepit backwards state of the Middle East, with their pathetic religious civil wars spilled over into our backyard in a big way on 9/11. That gives us the right. I don’t know where you are writing from, but in case you are from the MIddle East you had better tell your neighbors to fix up their houses or we’re going to come over there and fix them up to our liking. Democracy is our solution. If they don’t like it, then they should come up with another solution and hop to it double quick.
    Do you get it yet? We’re not fighting for your house. We’re fighting for ours.

  • dick

    Saw a table of military equipment purchased by Iraq dating back to 1979 put out by NEBRS (or some combination of those letters) an international group that tracked shipments of military hardware. The US furnished 1% of what Iraq got. Russia furnished 37%, Franc3 21%, Germany 17%, China 14%. Even Belgium furnished more military hardware than the US did. You need to check your numbers before you talk about the US furnishing all that stuff to Saddam.

  • Buzz

    Apologies for my tone, I got carried away. As an apologist for non-intervention, I am truly interested in how you would convince the people of the US not to intervene when the decadence of the Middle East threatens us all.
    The table you are looking for is graphically displayed at the Dissident Frogman: It comes from data compiled by the Swiss International Peace Research institute (SIPRI).

  • Dal

    Excuse me, but Iraqis are very civilized and polite people and very educated and they are not “bastards”

  • Dal: Well, of course, except the uncivilized, evil slime holding knives to the necks of innocent Japanese civilians.
    The Germans are civilized and wonderful…except for Nazis.
    Jeesh. Let’s not get politically correct about murderous thugs!

  • Kat

    Sure, they are, Dal. Until the US removed Saddam the following were routine in Iraq .Now I call that civilized behaviour–or should it be barbaric?
    * Medical experimentation
    * Beatings
    * Crucifixion
    * Hammering nails into the fingers and hands
    * Amputating sex organs or breasts with an electric carving knife
    * Spraying insecticides into a victim’s eyes
    * Branding with a hot iron
    * Committing rape while the victim’s spouse is forced to watch
    * Pouring boiling water into the victim’s rectum
    * Nailing the tongue to a wooden board
    * Extracting teeth with pliers
    * Using bees and scorpions to sting naked children in front of their parents
    *And the son’s were even worse–they especially loved beating someone’s pregnant wife till she was bloody and then raping her–blood made them horny.

  • PJF

    This comment at LGF makes you wonder just how ‘innocent’ these Japanese civilians are.
    I realise the LGF comments section isn’t the most sane and calm place on the internet, but the poster of the comment provides links elsewhere.
    It casts an interesting light on the issue. If those young people have set this up, they are playing with some very dangerous fire.

  • PJF: Nothing would justify their treatment.

  • Buzz

    If they’re in on it and it’s all a stunt to scare the Japanese out of Iraq, look for them to be released in a few days, with glowing stories of their captors…

  • bob

    JJ: nor would it justify different treatment by the US.
    PJF: We need to treat this problem as if those kids were our own. It might not make any difference politically, but it makes a big difference in who we are.
    After all, many in the anti-war crowd assumed that the US and Britain were ill-intentioned. And that alone was enough for some to deny us their support. So after rejecting that approach by detractors, would it now be fair for us to use it against those kids? To say that since they were on the wrong side politically, we can just let them hang? (Perhaps literally.)
    No way. If it does turn out that this was a fraud, we can worry about that later. And be relieved. And be angry. But until those kids are out, we need to work hard for their safe return.
    We owe it to ourselves and Iraq, if to no one else.

  • Kat
  • M. Simon

    Sydney Carton asks:
    “Who gave you the right to spread democracy?”
    Osama. On 9/11. As soon as we find him we are going to get him to sign the papers and make it official.

  • Not to mention…. Mr. Carton acts as if all political systems were equally valid. We’re doing the evil “spreading democracy” thing because it’s highly preferable to Rule by Strongman. You do think that that is a worthy goal, don’t you, Mr. Carton?

  • PJF

    Jeff Jarvis wrote:
    “Nothing would justify their treatment.”
    I agree. It wasn’t my intention to imply a KOS stylie “screw them” sentiment.
    My real point was that they may not be suffering any “treatment” at all, merely play-acting victimhood with some anti-coalition allies. There was the possibility that their “captors” may have felt inclined to carry out the “threats” anyway, hence my “playing with fire” comment. I would be sad at that outcome, but in the same distant way in which I am saddened by all the waste of young lives on the enemy side. And if this is a propaganda stunt by those Japanese, make no mistake – those young people are the enemy.
    Buzz mentioned that we might expect to see a release instead of murder. A release was indeed announced, but no news yet after several hours.