Thursday, January 27, 2005

When Inmates Run the Asylum

Baghdad - out of control:

..Starkly put, Baghdad is not under control, either by the Iraqi interim government or the American military.

On the bright spring day in April 2003 when marines helped topple Mr. Hussein's statue in Firdos Square, Baghdad, more than any other place in Iraq, was the place American commanders hoped to make a showcase for the benefits the invasion would bring.

Instead, daily life here has become a deadly lottery, a place so fraught with danger that one senior American military officer acknowledged at a briefing last month that nowhere in the area assigned to his troops could be considered safe.

... It was on Haifa Street that masked insurgents with drawn pistols ambushed three Iraqi election workers last month, forcing them from their vehicle, making them kneel in the road and shooting them in the head. Dozens of other attacks have made the street synonymous among the people of Baghdad with imminent death.

Every American attempt to root out the insurgents has failed, and their dominion is written loudly in graffiti on freshly painted, and repainted, walls. "Long live the resistance!" they say. "There is no God but Allah and his Prophet!"; "Death to the Americans and their Iraqi lackeys!"...

Just a few more of those deadender's breathing their last gasp...