"The neighborhood of Bab al Sheik
dates from a time, more than a thousand years ago, when Baghdad ruled the Islamic world... Ten centuries later, Bab al Sheik is less grand, but still extraordinary: it has been spared the sectarian killing that has gutted other neighborhoods, and Sunnis, Shiites, Kurds and Christians live together here with unusual ease." A NY Times
story (by Sabrina Tavernise and Karim Hilmi) about interesting people in an interesting place. (Print version
for them as wants one.)
posted by languagehat
on Nov 13, 2007 -
Seymour Hersh speaks at third Annual Amnesty International Lecture at Trinity College, Dublin, Oct 24/2007. YouTube links 1
posted by dougzilla
on Nov 11, 2007 -
Skip this one if you're sick of posts about Iraq or comment threads containing the word "Heckuva", but what would happen
if Mosul's "Saddam Dam" ("Sadd Saddam" in Arabic) collapsed?
it could lead to as many as 500,000 civilian deaths by drowning Mosul under 65 feet of water and parts of Baghdad under 15 feet
Good, because the US Army Corps of Engineers rates chances of collapse "exceptionally high
". Top that, God
posted by paul_smatatoes
on Nov 10, 2007 -
“Iraq War Memorial: Death of Prince Harry"
features the in fact hale and hearty royal scion
"laid out before the Union Jack with pennies placed over his eyes and head rested on the Bible...Prone with his unfired gun still holstered, Prince Harry is represented clutching a bloodied flag of Wales, and holding to his heart a cameo locket of his late mother, Princess Diana, while a desert vulture perches on his boot...a bronze casting of Prince Harry’s 'severed ears' also set for display at the Trafalgar Hotel will be offered on eBay." Via
posted by Abiezer
on Oct 11, 2007 -
In the U.S., motorists do not pay their way.
The US government spends more on highways and other auto-related expenses than it receives from auto-related taxes, unlike almost every country in Europe. In a recent report [pdf], Mark Delucchi
calculates automobile-related costs and revenues in three different ways and concludes the subsidy is around 20-70 cents per gallon or $24-105 billion in 2002. But what are automobile-related costs, you ask? [more inside]
posted by salvia
on Oct 2, 2007 -
"Last year, I completed my first tour of duty, in Basra, southern Iraq. I kept a video diary. This is the film I made, which details the experiences of both myself, and my colleagues, told in my own words."
posted by Mwongozi
on Sep 29, 2007 -
Billions over Baghdad.
"Between April 2003 and June 2004, $12 billion in U.S. currency—much of it belonging to the Iraqi people—was shipped from the Federal Reserve to Baghdad
, where it was dispensed by the Coalition Provisional Authority. Some of the cash went to pay for projects and keep ministries afloat, but, incredibly, at least $9 billion has gone missing, unaccounted for, in a frenzy of mismanagement and greed. Following a trail that leads from a safe in one of Saddam's palaces to a house near San Diego, to a P.O. box in the Bahamas, the authors
discover just how little anyone cared about how the money was handled."
posted by homunculus
on Sep 27, 2007 -
Bush and Aznar pre-Iraq Invasion--
Transcript of their private conversations in Crawford, Feb 22, 2003: "Quedan dos semanas. En dos semanas estaremos militarmente listos. Estaremos en Bagdad a finales de marzo", le dijo a Aznar.
("2 weeks. In 2 weeks we will be ready militarily. We'll be in Baghdad by the end of March", he told Aznar.) Consider this historical documentation. Full transcript here
, and audio clips in first link. [more inside]
posted by amberglow
on Sep 25, 2007 -
A Kurdish-controlled Iraq?
The goal of human society, ibn Khaldun thought, was the development of culture and the sciences.
For a variety of reasons, namely "geopolitical reality," it'd never work, but a poli-sci friend of mine did call it "philosophically interesting and compelling even."
posted by kliuless
on Sep 24, 2007 -
"Hey look at this shiny trinket, I think I'll pick it up and see what it---OH GOD MY FACE." A Pentagon group has
encouraged some U.S. military snipers in Iraq to target suspected insurgents by scattering pieces of "bait," such as detonation cords, plastic explosives and ammunition, and then killing Iraqis who pick up the items, according to military court documents.
posted by null terminated
on Sep 24, 2007 -
: "Filmmaker Deborah Scranton
talks about and shows clips from her documentary The War Tapes
, which put cameras in the hands of Charlie Company, a unit of the National Guard, for one year in Iraq. The soldiers' raw footage and diary excerpts tell a powerful, unsettling story of modern war.
posted by McLir
on Sep 20, 2007 -
Scott Ritter on Book TV
: "Opposing this war is the easiest thing in the world to do, because it's the right thing to do. And yet, the anti-war movement can't get it's act together. That's why I wrote this book
. The anti-war movement thinks that a strategy is holding a demonstration on a street corner, holding hands, lighting candles and singing Kumbia... No, that's not a strategy. That may qualify as a tactic. But a tactic divorced from strategy is just the 'noise before defeat
.' ...That's why when I say, 'Waging Peace: The Art of War
for the anti-war movement
,' I use that terminology. I know there are some people in the anti-war movement that are against it. They say, 'There's no way we can support something like that.' Well then you will continue to get your butts kicked." [Previously]
posted by McLir
on Sep 7, 2007 -
The killing of Jamie Dean.
"Police in rural Maryland staged a military stakeout and shot a troubled Army vet. As his family plans to sue, they are asking how a soldier being treated for PTSD could be shipped to Iraq."
posted by homunculus
on Sep 4, 2007 -