Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Rage Containment

The more I hear about the events around Fallujah, Iraq today, the more enraged I become. I don't know if any video or pictures have aired today -- photos and video were taken, according to AP -- but we Americans need to see and hear and understand the ugly truth of this "occupation". This has just become too damned important. Some media outlet needs to exhibit some balls, and let the supporters of the neocon movement see this at suppertime. If you are a sensitive person, may I gently recommend that you read this posting no further. It gets pretty graphic.
FALLUJAH, Iraq (AP) -- Jubilant residents dragged the charred corpses of four foreign contractors - one a woman, at least one an American - through the streets Wednesday and hanged them from the bridge spanning the Euphrates River. Five American soldiers died in a roadside bombing nearby.

The four contract workers for the U.S.-led coalition were killed in a rebel ambush of their SUVs in Fallujah, a Sunni Triangle city about 35 miles west of Baghdad and scene of some of the worst violence on both sides of the conflict since the beginning of the American occupation a year ago.

It was reminiscent of the 1993 scene in Somalia, when a mob dragged the corpse of a U.S. soldier through the streets of Mogadishu, eventually leading to the American withdrawal from the African nation.
The ugly truth is that we are not winning the "hearts and minds" of Iraqis - hell, we're no longer even in charge of the asylum, it appears:
Hours after the attack, the city was quiet. No U.S. troops or Iraqi police were seen in the area.Driving into work this morning, I was also struck almost senseless by an NPR report on the best selling DVD's and tapes in Iraq, glorifying the "resistance" and insurgency. You need to listen to this report.

This is so frustrating. How do we stop irrigating the killing fields with blood? You can not tell me that an Iraqi-led government at the end of June is going to have any positive impact on this mess. If anything, things are going to get a lot worse before they get better.

We're in a classic Catch 22. There's not even anyone we can turn this over to (like we did with the South Vietnamese army), and say, "See ya - this is now your kettle of fish." We're stuck.

My psyche hurts today.

Update: Link to two photos. WARNING - NOT FOR THE SQUEAMISH.

Photo 1
Photo 2

Update 2: I know this post is becoming disjointed, but here's another example of cognitive dissonance (thanks to Billmon for the pointer):
The CPA, responding to a Baghdad City Council request, is allocating $10 million to brighten the city's public parks, squares and playgrounds.

The White House
Iraq Fact of the Day
March 30, 2004
I feel like I've taken a hit of bad acid.