Thursday, October 28, 2004
And folks, just consider all those outside the U.S. What do they want?
I mean the absolute unanimity of choice of every enemy and hater of the U.S.; the Terrorists, the Salafis, the International rivals, the Envious etc. etc.
Then consider your real friends and allies, those who have stood with you and shed blood with you, and are willing to die for the common cause, whom do they want? Do you have any doubt about their preference?
My apology to the half of America who may disagree; and I address them with respect and fondness, but with pain in the heart. Do you really want to give satisfaction to the be-headers, kidnappers and child murderers; and the perpetrators of 9/11? Do you want to hear their savage shouts of victory? This is no reflection on the merit of your man. He may indeed be a paragon of virtue, but that does not change one little bit anything about the situation.
The most important factor in this struggle at the present time after the Will of God is your choice, your steadfastness and your resolve. Give the enemy the slap in the face and the great disappointment he deserves. You are the leaders; and all the lovers of freedom and enlightenment everywhere will take heart and charge with you with redoubled zeal, as they see your courage and defiance at the helm.
Go for it America, your friends are holding their breath and waiting, in anticipation, and yes, with anxiousness, and so are your enemies.
Just another thought regarding the American elections in so far as our Iraqi business is concerned:
If you think that President Bush has done a good job and is the better man to lead the war on terror, then no more needs to be said.
If you think the President did a bad job and made mistakes and got us all in a mess, then he must not be let off and must stay to clear the mess. Letting him off now will release him from his responsibility to finish the job and tidy up.
If you replace him now with the Senator, then both men will have ready excuses for any future failure. The one will be able to say that he was not allowed to finish his work and the other can say that it was not his fault anyway, because the other made such mistakes as to make any remedy impossible.
Here is an open and shut case. Folks, think logically, and you will find that there is only one answer and one choice, dictated with mathematical precision by simple logic.
Tuesday, October 26, 2004
This piece of news:
“An Iraqi insurgent group, meanwhile, said on a Web site it had taken 11 Iraqi National Guard soldiers hostage.
They were seized on a highway between Baghdad and Hillah, according to the Internet posting by the militant group, the Ansar al-Sunnah Army. The posting included the names of all 11.”
The location mentioned above is also roughly in the area mentioned in my previous post. It is a big mistake that this region is not properly controlled. It seems to me that the military strategy requires drastic revision. This pocket of Latifiya-Yousifiya-Iskandarya, which by the way is connected by a back road to the Falujah area, must be under careful surveillance as a matter of urgency. I know this area very well as I have done much work there. In this particular triangle which is situated just to the south of Baghdad, were concentrated the installations of “War Industrialization”, of Sadam. The previous regime has taken care to populate this region with the “right kind” of demography. For instance, the ammunition and explosive manufacturing complexes of “Al Qaqaa” which is connected with another complex called “Hittin”, which in turn leads to the industrial complex of “Iskandariya Mechanical Industries”, form a vast expanse of manufacturing compounds. From the vicinity of Al-Qaqaa complex there is a road which crosses the river nearby where a strategic bridge was built by “The Military Industrialization Corps” in the late eighties. Crossing that bridge there is a highway which passes through an area called “Jurf Al Sakhar”, where a major project of Petrochemical Industry and a refinery had been planned since long time. In the eighties of the last century the last project was actually a joint venture with a consortium led by “Bechtel”, with American financing, and the work was actually started in the eighties and early nineties, but of course could not continue.
The highway continues to lead to an area called “Amiriyah” which is on the outskirts of Fallujah, and where many of other war industry complexes are located, such as the famous “Saddam Establishment” for the manufacture of artillery and related hardware, built by the Yugoslavs in the seventies. Many other factories were planned and actually started in this area, many of which have much to do with the WMD programs. This entire region is a sparsely populated wilderness, (apart from an ultra modern housing town in Amiriyah, and the housing compounds of Iskandariya) with tribal peasant communities here and there, with the military installations mentioned above largely in ruins, but nevertheless providing excellent hiding places for any subterranean groups, not to mention the important stocks of explosives and other hardware which were extensively looted and hidden by the ex-regime bandits and their ilk in these regions, no doubt with the collusion of many of the local peasants, to whom many of the bandits are related tribally. Thus the latest revelation of the disappearance of about 350 tons of high explosives from Al Qaqaa site does not surprise me or any Iraqi in the least, and I am sure this is but a small sample of the stuff actually in the hands of the peasants and bandits around there and elsewhere in the country. People don’t seem to realize the enormity of the quantities of weaponry and ammunition of all kinds that existed before the fall of the regime. Saddam had at one time a standing army of 2 millions and sufficient armament and ammunition for these as well as the numerous security organizations. Where do you think all this material has gone?
Before building the bridge abovementioned the other side of the river (i.e. the location of the Petrochemical project), was an incredible wilderness. Some of my colleagues swear that they had seen a kind of leopard or tiger when they started work on some civil works there. Reptiles and lizards of all kinds dart rapidly in front of you as walk, this I have witnessed personally many times. I have seen many foxes and I am sure many kinds of wild life used to abound there. Rather pretty palm groves form a kind of narrow band on each side of the river.
Thus armed groups of terrorists and insurgents can move about freely and in small groups throughout this rather large area, and have no problem in finding shelter from a population, either intimidated or actually sympathetic, not to mention the lucrative business of kidnappings and ransoms which is developing into a major industry in these parts, in addition to financial support which is pouring generously from many sources. To pin them down and track them requires considerable effort and skill. Nevertheless, to control these parts is more important in my opinion than even the problem of Fallujah. Another rather similar area is situated near the Iranian border in the east in the Governorate of Diala, where constant harassment by the subversives is going on, including the latest massacre of the poor army recruits. In my humble opinion, neutralizing and controlling these regions should precede any push towards the urban concentrations of the West.
Monday, October 25, 2004
My old friend Lee C. wrote:
“I fail to see the logic of turning against the Interim Government.Why are the Iraqi people not turning on the "foreign fighters", the Jihadi, Sadr and his gang, the Ba'athi remnants and rest of the insurgency?”
Well, Lee, I am not saying that it is logical; however the popular mood is very much incensed because of frustration in the face of the apparent inability of the Government to stem the tide of terrorism that is plaguing our country.
Of course, the worst thing that could happen is the kind of sectarian conflict that seems to be the aim of the terrorist groups. If you remember there was this famous letter of Zarqawi, which I have written about at the time. That letter, which I am convinced of its authenticity was very clear and more or less outlined a complete plan of action. One of the main objectives explicitly stated in that letter was this objective of precipitating a sectarian civil war in Iraq. If you study carefully the pattern of violence and terrorism you will clearly see that there is a definite sectarian orientation to these acts, and most of the victims are from certain religious and ethnic groups (Shiaa, Kurds, Christians – together the vast majority). However to be fair, the Sunni areas have also suffered numerous attacks, the latest of which was the attack on the National Guards posts in Al Baghdadi town in the West of Iraq. Also the victims in the frequent attacks in Mosul and elsewhere were not Shiaa people. We must however, struggle, with all our might to combat this sectarianism, for it is a vile plot to destroy the country.
The people are incensed for many reasons some of which are:
- During the disturbance in Najaf, the Government and the MNF took very decisive action and we all saw the consequences. Similarly, the problem in Sadr City was dealt with resolutely. However, no such firmness is seen in regard to the situation in locations such as Latifiya, Diala and the like.
- Latifiya, is a small town, much smaller than Najaf. This place has become the haven for the most hardened criminal gangs. There is a stretch of highway no longer than 10 km which goes by this town. This road has seen repeated murders, kidnappings, and harassment of quite innocent travelers, mostly in fact in one point on this road. The bandits simply commit these acts and go home in time for dinner and comfortable beds. It is established for instance, that the incarceration and beheading of the American and British Engineers took place in that very town. They have even attacked funeral processions of people taking their dead to nearby Karbala, as is the custom with Shiaa people. The murder of the policemen returning from Jordan took place at precisely the same point on that road. Even my relative who was kidnapped lately was attacked in the same place. The Government claimed several times that it has chastised this area and arrested many individuals, yet the atrocities continue to be perpetrated, in even greater frequency and scale. So people are wondering why is it that the Government and the MNF is so ineffective in this area, when they were so determined in the case of Najaf and Sadr City. Also the fact that one of the important persons responsible for national security in the Government happens to be of the same tribe as the main population of the town is not lost on people.
- The above is only one example of several such similar areas. Some areas of Baghdad are also known to be haven for terrorists.
- It is well known, that the policy of Dr. Ayad Allawi, is to try to rehabilitate some of the elements of the previous regime. Although I personally support this policy, yet there are obvious dangers here. The people suspect that infiltration and covert collaboration with the terrorists is taking place from within the new security formations as has been demonstrated in the latest atrocity of the massacre of the unarmed young volunteers near Mandili. The assailants knew exactly about the movement of these poor guys and were waiting in ambush. They were sent unarmed on a desolate road and at night, completely without any protection. Those responsible in the training camp must be investigated, at least for criminal negligence.
- Why should the soldiers, mainly from the Southern parts, be brought to this dangerous location for training? Wouldn’t it have been safer to train them nearer home in much more secure areas?
- We have yet to see a single public prosecution of any of the perpetrators of these atrocities, although, both the American and Iraqi authorities claim that they have captured many. This is most peculiar and highly suspicious.
- Sadr and his followers are open, public and frank opposition, and every one of their leaders is working in broad daylight. They are not some dark figures working underground and using terrorist car bombings and suicide attacks. This fact must be stated, in fairness, regardless whether we like that movement or not. Therefore it is not correct to class them with the terrorists of Fallujah and Latifiyah etc.
Above are some of the points that are troubling people. For my part I sincerely hope that the Government acts quickly to dispel these misgivings and regain the trust and support of the people which is beginning to wane.
"I must point out that there is a campaign underway to try (among other things) to give comfort to the Iraqi Police and Armed Forces that has not been getting ANY attention for some time now.if you feel that you have something to contribute, or would spare the time to write so much as a short "thank you" to these brave souls, EMAIL ME or go to World Inquiry (also linked on the right of this web page) and drop a line with commments, ideas or contructive feedback. the IP cannot afford to be "summertime patriots" and neither should you.regards-Chris
Chris from NH Email Homepage 10.25.04 - 11:17 am # "
Chris deserves appreciation for his efforts and deserves support. All our friends are requested to support him in any way they can.
Sunday, October 24, 2004
Regarding the escalation of terrorist acts against the Iraqi Army and Security forces, especially the massacre of 50 unarmed youth; the situation is really dangerous. The mood of the people is quite near to boiling point, and they might turn even against the Interim Goverment. Zarqawi and his likes have stated long ago their foul intent to ignite a sectarian civil war. I fear that he has gone a long way towards achieving this. Urgent action is required before a terrible conflagration takes place. If that happens, heavens forbid, the situation will become entirely untennable and uncontrolable.
Shall talk more about it when I have time.
Friday, October 22, 2004
So the Afghan people came to vote, traveling from far away villages on donkeys, on foot, by whatever means of transport available, braving intimidation, defying the terrorists. They came in their thousands, and waited outside polling stations for hours and hours patiently. Women came; old men came; young men came. The women suspended their household work, taking turns to look after the children. I am not inventing all this, all the reporters mentioned this. We saw it on T.V. screens. The poor people came, clad in their simple attires, their poverty itself a great medal of honor and decency. I tell you, I have seldom witnessed such an awesome sight; I have seldom been touched more profoundly by an event. This was the vote of the people, the truth of the people, and the judgment and Word of the people.
Now those who have eyes can see, but the blindness of the heart is blacker than the blindness of the eye. And all those who shed crocodile tears over the “invasion” of an Islamic land, and raised such a din of noise about the injustice perpetrated against “fellow Muslims”, and all that; all those, do they learn from the “message” of the silent lines of thousands of Afghans waiting at polling stations. Can they get it through their sculls? The people have spoken, loud and clear, they have spoken; the silent majority has spoken at last when given the slightest chance. So Karzai, the American puppet; the stooge; the agent appointed by the CIA etc. etc., Karzai gets the overwhelming vote of the Afghan people! What say you, oh pundits and wizards who have talked so much and pontificated so much, you who claimed to know all there is to know about these people, and told us so often of how wrong it was to interfere, how wrong it was to rid them of the Taliban and Al Qaeda etc. etc. Do you have some little decency left in you to eat your words? I guess not. And are all those millions of Afghans not pious Muslims? - But they are; and a thousand times more so than all the terrorists and murderers, the beheaders of the innocent, the kidnappers, the killers of children. The simple millions of the Afghan people understand true religion a million times better than you, and have voted for hope and the future, and are happy to “collaborate” with the “crusading” Americans and their friends. What more justification for the “Great Campaign” do you want? Allah ( Subhanhu Wataala) shall reward America and her allies for the great charitable act that has freed these people from a most terrible tyranny and horror. That was a good deed, no matter what motivation lay behind it. And one day, sooner or later, the “Message” will come also, loud and clear, from the overwhelming majority of the Iraqi people.
Wednesday, October 20, 2004
The American people should realize the full responsibilities and importance of their nation. No one can deny, even those who despise the U.S.A. that this country has an importance and influence transcending by far its borders and encompassing the entire world. This is particularly true at this point in time of the history of human civilization. Indeed the United States of America has reached now a height of power and influence unprecedented hitherto. This is the outcome of all the struggles and violence of the twentieth century which saw the rise of this Great Mega Power after the defeat of many including German Nazism, Fascism of all kinds, and the Communist Empire. The first half of the twentieth century saw this shift of power away from the old European powers to the Emerging Giant in the New World. This shift was not a smooth and easy one, but indeed accompanied by the most violent and bloody struggles and upheavals. There were ups and downs, and sometimes even temporary defeats (for instance Vietnam), but the sum total of the inexorable historical process was the resounding triumph and prevalence of the American Super Power. Very few people could have foreseen this even as late as the eighties of the last century. And of course not all the battles were won by weapons and armies. For instance, the Soviet empire collapsed as a result of the failure of its system and inability to compete with a superior rival; a moral, economic, and political superiority; not to mention a relentless “Cold War” waged for nearly half a century.
But the logic and “dialectic” of historical evolution does seem to conform to the old “Hegelian” concept of thesis and antithesis. That is to say historical forces will inevitably tend towards the emergence of New Poles (not to be confused with the Polish people) and New rival powers. And it is not difficult to guess the powers and countries who are candidates for this new polarization. I believe, this is already happening in front of our eyes. However, “Religious fanaticism”, or if you like this pseudo-Islamic extremism, represented by, for instance, Al-Qaeda or similar groups, do not qualify as serious candidates or serious rivals for the predicted new polarization of the twenty first century. As I see it, this “War on Terror”, important as it may be, is nothing but mop up operations of some the side effects and consequences of the “Cold War”.
You may wonder: why the above preamble? And what bearing does it have on the present situation? Well, I shall answer you very briefly and concisely.
Any concept that there is possibility of a wide alliance that will support U.S. efforts and be amicable to its goals and national interests is a false hope which profoundly misinterprets the logic of historical realism. The battle lines are clearly drawn, and ally, foe, and opportunistic bystander are all quite well defined, and any notion that these can be appreciably changed by diplomacy or otherwise is an illusion.
Monday, October 18, 2004
I wish to express appreciation for the great comments I get from you.
Nevertheless I think perhaps I have not succeeded to convey the sense of real urgency and opportunity in my last post. You see, the situation is such that a great development has taken place. What I am referring to is precisely where we are now vis-à-vis the so-called “Sadrist current” or the movement led by Muqtada Al-Sadr. Now my friends have to broaden their minds and try to understand a complex phenomenon, which if dealt with properly could be put to real use and may well be a powerful instrument of change to the better. The “Sadrist” movement is something quite different from the other “insurrectionst” groups, especially those in the so-called “triangle”. I think my brother “Ziad” of Healing Iraq, has analyzed the situation well in one of his posts about a month ago. What happened in Najaf, Karbala and Now in Sadr City ( Formerly Saddam City and before that Thowrah City), essentially is the failure of the disturbance in the face of determined action by the Government and MNF, to be sure, but not just that. The fact is that the “Sadrists” have failed to arouse the Masses of the Shiaa people despite all their miseries and the terrible hardships that they are enduring in their daily life. They lacked popular base and popular support, and after all the painful events that took place it seems that the leaders of this movement have come to realize this and have been forced to submit to the pulse of Shiaa street.
Now I wish to emphasize one word that seems to have gone unnoticed in my previous post. I said that the real “antidote” to the terrorists, Saddamists et al, are these very same poor Shiaa masses, even those who have raised arms in the face of the authorities in the latest confrontations. Now, for instance, Thowrah City has two million inhabitants who are entirely reclaimable and could be a formidable force confronting the terrorists if they can be rescued and reformed, and that can be done only through employment and active involvement and recruitment in a revitalized and politically targeted and focused economic campaign. I mean, if say 1 billion dollars of the many billions that have been spent in this war is immediately directed and focused to this area, and entrusted to honest hands, and if this sum is “deployed’ with urgency to engage all able bodied men in projects to clean up the area and restore basic services and support small business; I can guarantee that this will be more effective than much military activity in changing the strategic balance in Baghdad. The emboldening of the Saddamists and terrorists has much to do with the apathy and disgruntlement of this tough class of hardened plebeians, who should be the ones most to gain by the liberation and removal of the previous regime. Quite frankly, our middle class is much less qualified to confront the terrorists and murderers than these tough working classes. I know the government is thinking along the same lines, and that considerable sums have already been allocated, but I am writing these lines in the hope that our American friends on the ground should be aware of the importance of the matter and that they might oversee and watch the process carefully, which should be considered as part and parcel of the military campaign.
As I have said long ago, it should be realized, that Baghdad is the key to stability in the country which explains why most of the effort of the enemy is concentrated on this city. But Baghdad has an overwhelming majority (especially if you count Sadr City) who are intrinsically and fundamentally the real “enemies” of this enemy. Any opportunity to reclaim and mobilize this majority should be pounced upon, and that could be a decisive factor in this campaign. If this is clearly understood, great results can be achieved; and you must trust me on this, for we know the situation here on the ground better than anybody else.
Sunday, October 17, 2004
You know for quite some time after that glorious day of the fall of the Idol, very large portions of the country were absolutely quiet, waiting, expecting. The support for the liberation was tangible and quite real in many places of the country. For a brief couple of months, people waived at the U.S. and allied soldiers, and these walked freely about, and a kind of fraternization was really beginning. Then things started to go wrong. Those friends who have been following my blog should know that I have never said that the performance of the Americans and allies was flawless. But I have always resisted the temptation to dwell on mistakes; because the enemies of Iraq do that for quite destructive and vicious reasons; to discourage and demoralize and spread pessimism and despair. Yet mistakes were made, big mistakes. But that is not the point that I wish to make today. What I really want to say is that an opportunity was missed to launch a real campaign of economic improvement, especially in those parts of the country most oppressed and neglected by the deposed regime, especially in the Shiite South. After so many years of depravation, the people were hungry for everything. Very simple things would have made quite an impression. To be fair, much was attempted but the tangible results on the ground made very little actual impression. I could expand on this and give many details and examples and the kind of things that would have been more effective etc. etc., but this is not the point that I want to make.
What I want to say today is that with the latest events in Sadr City and the present quieting of much of the South, another opportunity presents itself. An important economic effort should be launched without delay to really make a difference this time in these areas. Small and medium Projects and schemes with local labor intensive strategy should be rushed into implementation. There are regions where the security situation permits this right now. Complicated and large long term projects may be necessary but what is needed right now is some real tangible short term results that at last might show the populace some definite improvements in their situation. We say better late than never. The strategic planning for the aftermath of the war was not particularly effective, it must be admitted. It is time to rethink and grasp any opportunity to rectify past mistakes. These impoverished masses who were the real victims of the defunct regime are the real antidote to the Terrorists and the Baathi’s, despite all their squalor and ignorance. It is high time that they are served properly that they see the benefit and feel the change. And results if achieved substantially on this front will reverberate throughout the country and make many in the more restive parts rethink their attitude.
Saturday, October 16, 2004
Actually, the American elections are rather more crucial for us at the moment than our own . That is not to belittle the importance of the latter, but taking a really hard look at the present situation, one cannot escape this conclusion. This statement may annoy a lot of people, but we are not particularly concerned about sensitivities at the moment. The thing is that we have to admit that despite the fact that most emphatically, the majority of the Iraqi people are for the new Iraq, and that the “insurrectionists” do not represent but a small minority, nevertheless the balance of forces on the ground would be seriously upset were it not for the support of the American and allied forces and nations. This small minority is dangerous, desperate, ruthless and absolutely prepared to commit any kind of atrocity to further their aims and vent their spleen, as has been clearly demonstrated almost everyday. They are well financed and connected with parties and interests beyond the border who consider it a matter of life and death to thwart all U.S. efforts and abort this attempt at creating a democratic state in the area. There are even larger international forces at work behind the regional players. So with all these foes it cannot be expected that the fledgling new Iraqi state and the largely peaceful and unarmed people can withstand the assault on their own in the present stage of development. It is a foregone conclusion that any abandonment or retreat would result in the most catastrophic consequences both for the Iraqi people as well as within the context of the wider global war on terrorism. Having said that, it is also important, to ease the burden on the Multi National Forces and keep them as much as possible out of harms way and stop the losses altogether. This can be done by transferring as much of the routine tasks to the Iraqis while keeping the MNF in secure bases from which they can be deployed for strategic tasks. For us, they are a most valuable asset and must be shielded and used only with the utmost care and parsimony. I believe it is possible to devise such a strategy and that it can be implemented.
Now, do we have a right, as Iraqis to express our opinion about the U.S. elections, which are of course an entirely internal affair for the American people? Or are they?
It seems to me, that since this matter is going to have a direct impact on our lives and very existence and since the U.S. government and people have seen fit to intervene and initiate this profound revolution in our country; it would not be extravagant nor incorrect for us even to demand to take part in those elections, rhetorically speaking of course.
So, I have been, personally very attentive to the debates and positions of both candidates, and I have some thoughts which I would like to share with you, my American friends. To start with, Senator Kerry may be a very good man and quite patriotic. Also we have to respect the almost 50% of the American people who lean towards the democrats. I don’t know much about domestic issues in the States so naturally, as might be expected, the position of any Iraqi would be mainly influenced by the issue that most concerns him. Thus, regardless of all the arguments of both candidates the main problem is that President Bush now represents a symbol of defiance against the terrorists and it is a fact, that all the enemies of America, with the terrorists foremost, are hoping for him to be deposed in the upcoming elections. That is not to say that they like the democrats, but that they will take such an outcome as retreat by the American people, and will consequently be greatly encouraged to intensify their assault. The outcome here on the ground in Iraq seems to be almost obvious. In case President Bush loses the election there would be a massive upsurge of violence, in the belief, rightly or wrongly, by the enemy, that the new leadership is more likely to “cut and run” to use the phrase frequently used by some of my readers. And they would try to inflict as heavy casualties as possible on the American forces to bring about a retreat and withdrawal. It is crucial for them to remove this insurmountable obstacle which stands in their way. They fully realize that with continued American and allies’ commitment, they have no hope of achieving anything.
On the other hand if President Bush is reelected, this will prove to them that the American people are not intimidated despite all their brutality, and that their cause is quite futile. Yes there is little doubt that an election victory by President Bush would be a severe blow and a great disappointment for all the terrorists in the World and all the enemies of America. I believe that such an outcome would result in despair and demoralization of the “insurgent elements” here in Iraq, and would lead to the pro-democracy forces gaining the upper hand eventually. Note that we are not saying that President Bush is perfect, nor even that he is better than the Senator, just that the present situation is such that a change of leadership at this crucial point is going to send an entirely wrong message to all the enemies. Unfortunately, it seems to me that many in the U.S. don’t quite appreciate how high the stakes are. The challenge is mortal, and you and we are locked in a War, a National Emergency; and in such circumstances partisan considerations must be of secondary importance. If you lose this war, you are no more, and you will have to withdraw within you boundaries cringing and waiting for terror to strike you in your homeland, afraid to move around, afraid to travel, afraid to do business abroad. You will have to see all your friends abroad annihilated and intimidated and nobody will have any confidence or trust in you anymore. And you will have to watch from far with bitterness the forces of darkness and evil taking over in many parts of this earth, with feelings of impotence and inability to do anything about it. In other words you would lose all credibility, and the fiends of terror and obscurantism would go triumphantly dancing the macabre dance of mayhem and death, and darkness would descend and obliterate the light and the hope. You think I am exaggerating, you think I am being paranoid? I just pray that destiny would not prove all these things; I pray that these horrors will not come to pass. And all this for what? For failing to confront few thousands ex-baathists and demented religious fanatics and some common criminals, concentrated in some rural areas of a country of the size of just one of your states; and that for a nation that has defeated Natzism, Imperial Japan and the Soviet Empire!
Well if Senator Kerry is such a good man, and he may well be, then it would be prudent to wait just another four years to elect him, after the job is done. And if this is interference in your national affairs by a foreigner, I am not going to give you any apology for it.
Friday, October 15, 2004
I am glad Ziad ( Healing Iraq) is back. I was getting worried about him. The incident of the murder of the lady pharmacist and the doctor is well known and has shocked people around here. These killers come from the murderous Latifiya, Yusifiya, Mahmoudiya triangle - very well known haven of criminals and thugs of the Baathist regime and various assortments of their fellow travelers, and the center from which much of the kidnapping, murders and beheadings are launched, and precisely where the American and British victims were kept and murdered lately; a security force which is really in control would not have much difficulty in finding the perpetrators in this location, which is not particularly heavily populated. The government is trying to tackle this area. Unfortunately, the defenseless people are still very vulnerable and the murderers are more or less free to terrorize at their will. As I have said before, repeatedly, there is still not the kind of security grip which could tip the balance of intimidation the other way round. Somehow I feel that massive military action is not sufficient alone to tackle the situation, although admittedly, it may be unavoidable at times. I am sure the government is trying its best, though, and is struggling in very difficult circumstances. What is needed is not just simple police but a kind of rapid intervention groups able to deal with kidnappers and terrorists on the spot; also permanent security presence and grip in residential areas both in urban as well as provincial regions; easier said than done, admittedly though. And so in the final analysis, it is clear that the growth and strengthening of Iraqi security forces will be the key to a real change in the situation eventually, and until that happens the support of the MNF is essential to avert real disaster.
Monday, October 11, 2004
A positive development, definitely, that which is happening in Sadr City, or Thowrah City. The first day seems promising and weapons are being surrendered seriously, we are keeping our fingers crossed, as it is said “chez vous”. There is little doubt that the majority of people everywhere, including trouble spots are longing for peace. I have not been in Sadr City lately, but it is said, that the entrance of I.P. and ING was met with “ululation” (remember the word?) from women and general satisfaction. And in all honesty, something has to be said about the so-called “Sadrist Current”. Well, despite all their transgressions and crimes, these people are not the “hardcore” terrorists who are the real danger in Iraq. Anyway let’s hope that these latest developments result in a real appeasement of this important front, and more importantly unify at least all the Shiaa people towards the future political process. And in the final analysis the real solution to the whole problem has to be political, although we must appreciate the effect of American fire power that seems to have certain tranquilizing and sobering effect upon agitated souls.
However we have some worry that the patient may relapse in the absence appropriate doses of the “sedatives” abovementioned.
Sunday, October 10, 2004
A most important development in the media sphere is this new T.V. channel called “Al-Fayhaa” that started recently transmitting from Dubai, U.A.E.; despite its humble financing and capabilities. It is able to beam only 3 hours per day each afternoon with repeats in the evening. Despite that, its popularity is skyrocketing. This station has hardly any programming ability, relying mainly on receiving calls from the public and some voice reports from inside Iraq, where they don’t even have the ability to use cameras or produce serious reports from the ground; so it is more like a televised radio station rather than a proper T.V. channel. The significant thing is the absolute freedom of the callers to say whatever they wish without the slightest attempt by the anchormen to edit or interfere, and also each caller is given ample time to express his views however humble or poorly expressed. In some way it is like the internet, a space of unedited freedom for the ordinary people to express themselves. This is quite revolutionary, since the internet is still out of reach of most people in Iraq.
And you will be astonished of what you hear, tremendous stuff. Secrets and the inner reality of the situation in Iraq are exposed through the witness of people on the ground- ordinary people. A pity that they don’t have English speaking programming, it would create a real stir in the Western world, more than our blogs, I think. It is fast becoming the forum for ordinary Iraqi people of all kinds who may not have access to the internet; the majority, I suppose. Nowadays I find myself riveted to the T.V. screen throughout the three hours evening repeat of the afternoon transmission to the exclusion of all other activities.
In short this modest amateurish effort by a group of Iraqi patriots, with financing from small Iraqi businessmen abroad is infinitely more important than all the other media that have come into being after the liberation.
Saturday, October 09, 2004
I have read your excellent posting "Listen America". I would like to ask my local paper to run it as a "Guest Opinion" editorial. Would you object to your posting being used in this manner. I hope that you will give permission to my local Newspaper to use the article if they are brave enough to do so. Many people in my area need to see the sorts of things you have written.Thank you very much for your Weblog and I look forward to hearing from you as soon as possible.Best regards and wishes,Mikael
Thanks alot, not only I do not object, but I shall be grateful for your efforts to spread the message as widely as possible.
The truth about how the majority of Iraqis feel will become apparent sooner or later. Just look at what is happening in Afghanistan. How many insults and slanders were levelled against Karazai, but now just you wait and see the results of the first free elections in their history. Hats off to the great honorable Afghan people. I was touched to tears by the sight of the tremendous crowds lining up for the vote despite all the threats and hardships.
Friday, October 08, 2004
Just a footnote to the last post. Do you know where this debate in this Arab Network was taking place? - right in your front yard, from one of the U.S. cities, and the arab commentators in question were all U.S. citizen, holders of U.S. passports, and ofcourse, of palestinian or syrian origin. Just thought you might be interested to know.
Kenneth Bigley has been beheaded - Another innocent victim whose sole sin was that he came to our country to build and reconstruct; another atrocity; another monstrosity. And there are those who call these monsters “resistance fighters” or even just “insurgents”. And I have seen his poor old Mum pleading, fainting and suffering. What callous hearts are these? - Before him the American engineers and so many others. And so you see what we are up against, what we have been up against for the last five decades.
One Iraqi T.V. channel interviewed the young mother of two little girls who were murdered in the suicide bombing atrocity in Al-Amil district. The girls were to start school the next day. Their school things were prepared and leaning against the wall. It is something that truly breaks the heart. It is remarkable that the incident received little attention in the world media. This was a deliberate attack against children, not accidental, not collateral, but a premeditated deliberate murder of children. More that thirty children were dismembered and butchered by two suicide cars and the terrorists were most certainly non-Iraqis who came from abroad. Can you imagine the barbarism, can you comprehend the cruelty. But for me the most unbearable sight was those school bags leaning against the wall lovingly prepared by a young mother in fond anticipation of the start of the school year only to have her two beloved young ones brought home bloodied corpses. And what was the crime of the children? – crowding around the soldiers to receive candy!
Now as I am writing these lines, I am watching a debate in one of the Arab channels with usual slanders and twisting of the facts, shedding crocodile tears about the Iraqi people and how cruel and unjust are the Americans etc. etc. We have had enough of these Arabs. Such bigotry and evil have seldom been known in human history: To hell and damnation all of them together with their “insurgent’ brothers from whatever color and nationality they may be. And we are not forgetting the terrible atrocity against tourists in Taba, Sinai, either.
I have been listening to the report about the WMD’s by Mr. David Kay. Now, all of you in the West must know that as far as we, the Iraqis, are concerned, we care very little that stocks of WMD’s existed or not at the time of liberation. For us Saddam and his regime were in themselves, the most lethal WMD that cost our people hundreds of thousands of victims not to mention the destruction of the economy and the very fabric of society in our afflicted country. That regime was a dead end for our people and with its continuation there was no hope whatsoever for the future. Mr. David Kay did mention something about this, and he should know, since he spent so much time in Iraq and has intimate knowledge of the situation. Saddamism is a cancer that we have yet to recover from. Western intervention lead by the U.S.A. was a God send to us, despite all the pain and misery that accompanied the operation and the repercussions that continue to rock the process of recuperation and rebirth of the nation. The U.S. soldiers are bravely standing in the thick of the turmoil and contributing with their blood and sweat not to mention the treasure of their land, towards curing us from the remaining ulcers of the disease after having performed the main surgery which no one else even dared even to think of.
Perhaps, the interests of our people were not the main consideration that led to that action; nevertheless, that does not change anything about the importance and implications for the people of Iraq of this tremendous historical act. Yes there is pain, chaos and loss; yet on the other hand, there is possibility of hope, and a clearly discernible “light at the end of tunnel”, to use this worn out phrase.
Were we better off during Saddam’s time? - A question to which many outsiders are very keen to know our answer. Well, in many respects the streets are much more insecure, yet the security that existed in Saddam’s days was like someone quietly waiting for certain death; like a cancer stricken individual carrying the disease in his guts with no hope or attempt at cure. Yes, the pain and torture may be much more terrible when the surgeon has operated and the disease is tackled; but at least there is hope of recovery and healing, and the prospect of life saving. And this is not allegory, nor a parable; this is coming from someone whose house has been standing in the midst of bombs and explosions for so long now, protected by none but the mercy and grace of the Lord; from someone who has suffered robbery, kidnapping and constant daily danger.
And here we are, trying to organize elections, trying to control the security situation, trying to restart the reconstruction, able to talk, able to think, able to watch satellite T.V., use the internet, the mobile etc. – in short everything that we have been forbidden to do before. And without the slightest hesitation, we hail with Love and Gratitude our giant U.S. friend and his allies, standing with us shoulder to shoulder, braving the elements, braving death, calumny and hatred, shedding blood; to help us heal, to help us reach the shores of safety. And make no mistake, the campaign is winning and will achieve its objectives. Make no mistake; you have already created an allied nation in the very heart of the M.E. despite all appearances, which will produce all the long term benefits and consequences so many times reiterated by President Bush, to the ridicule and insults of the profoundly mistaken, of the profoundly hating.
America, stay the course - God, Decency, Honor, Hope and everything that is virtuous and right is on your side, beside the majority of the Iraqi people. America do not waiver, for you have never waged a more noble and just campaign in your entire history. America, we are winning, God’s willing, and Victory is coming sooner than many might think.
Monday, October 04, 2004
Now that OPERATION IRAQ FREEDOM II has to be launched against essentially the same enemy regrouped and refinanced and thouroughly convinced that terrorism and "nihilism" is the way to confront civilization, The Mesopotamian is still around, unflinching and undying friend of liberation, freedom and enlightenment. Will be back with some more thoughts.
Regards to all my friends.