Thursday, May 11, 2006

All of Us Participate in a New Iraq

All of Us Participate in a New Iraq

US

Last Friday I was at the University of Texas, Austin, giving a presentation on Iraq. After dumping an hour's worth of horrible "real news" about Iraq, I was asked the question I have by now learnt to expect: "Is there anything good happening there at all?" I understand why people ask this. There must be some hope, somewhere, right?

I suggested that there are always the military press releases folks can go to, for an "upper" about Iraq. Here I recounted one of these bogus "news" reports. Released during my second stint in Iraq, a report of May 21, 2004, stated: "The Coalition Provisional Authority has recently given out hundreds of soccer balls to Iraqi children in Ramadi, Karbala, and Hilla. Iraqi women from Hilla sewed the soccer balls, which are emblazoned with the phrase, All of Us Participate in a New Iraq."

THEM

That same evening after my presentation, I received an email from a doctor friend in Baghdad. The email pertains to the question I was asked, so I quote it here:

"Dear Mr. Dahr, I am wondering why? Americans and coalition forces were supported by pro-Iranian Militias, like the Badr Organization! The support and help of Iraqi Shiites at first helped to somewhat stabilize and maintain the occupation. Death squads trained by the coalition forces are working day and night under cover of the Ministry of Interior, attacking innocent people: both Sunnis and Shiites!!!! In spite of knowing very well who is doing what, we still see no improvement in the security situation. On the contrary, the situation is getting worse. I have many colleagues, doctors and other professionals, who are now begging for help to get out of Iraq for their lives and for their families' lives! The only losers are the Iraqis. The only Iraqis who are benefiting from this war are those who spend all their life outside Iraq and are now living in their big castle, the green zone!!!!! Everyone now knows that the invasion of Iraq was carried out upon falsified testimonies and lies!!!! What is going on on the ground differs a lot from what the media tells!!!!! I mean that."

As bad as things are in Iraq today, it may come as a surprise to many people in the US, including many who never supported the illegal invasion and occupation to begin with, that Iraq has been a disaster from the first day of the invasion.

Each time I hear this question, several scenes from my time there flash through my mind, and I am left pondering whether anything good has happened in Iraq since the beginning of the US-led invasion.


That's just the first few paragraphs the complete article is here.

markfromireland

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