Prone to Violence
FROM THE French Revolution to contemporary Iraq, the beginning phase of democratization in unsettled circumstances has often spurred a rise in militant nationalism. Democracy means rule by the people, but when territorial control and popular loyalties are in flux, a prior question has to be settled: Which people will form the nation? Nationalist politicians vie for popular support to answer that question in a way that suits their purposes. When groups are at loggerheads and the rules guiding domestic politics are unclear, the answer is more often based on a test of force and political manipulation than on democratic procedures.
posted by Postroad
on Jan 7, 2006 -
Grandmas protest the war in Iraq and get the cuffs
Funny, great story.
We tried to ring the bell at the booth, but no one answered," Wile said. "I saw a head poke up from behind the counter every once in a while and then duck back down. I don't know what they were afraid of. Maybe they don't know how to deal with a bunch of grannies."
posted by mountainmambo
on Oct 19, 2005 -
Bush teleconference with troops staged.
Nothing in the article says who
is responsible for organizing the staged question and answer session, The White House, military officials, or others in the defense department. Just that it infact was staged, and that the troops were coached for 45 minutes prior to the actual teleconference. When Bush, in an unscripted move, asked an officer if he had anything to say, he stammered through a sentence, in stark contrast to the well put together responses to all the other questions, thanking the President and saying, "I like you." More PR from the Bush administration.
posted by SirOmega
on Oct 13, 2005 -
Power Cut Shuts Down Iraq Oil Exports
ASRA, Iraq (AP) -- Iraq's oil exports were shut down Monday by a power cut that darkened parts of central and southern Iraq, including the country's only functioning oil export terminals, Iraqi and foreign oil officials said.
posted by celerystick
on Aug 22, 2005 -
Interview with Scott Ritter on Iran June Invasion
What do you think the world's reaction will be if the U.S. invades Iran in June and fails, inciting an invasion of Iraq with well-equipped and trained Iranian troops and equipment, retaliation from Iran with missile attacks against the oil fields in the mid-east and Israel as well as southern Europe and Turkey. How will life in this country change?
posted by mk1gti
on Apr 2, 2005 -
While the proverbial road to hell is paved with good intentions, the internal government memos collected in this publication demonstrate that the path to the purgatory that is Guantanamo Bay, or Abu Ghraib, has been paved with decidedly bad intentions. The policies that resulted in rampant abuse of detainees first in Afghanistan, then at Guantanamo Bay, and later in Iraq, were product of three pernicious purposes designed to facilitate the unilateral and unfettered detention, interrogation, abuse, judgment, and punishment of prisoners: (1) the desire to place the detainees beyond the reach of any court or law; (2) the desire to abrogate the Geneva Convention with respect to the treatment of persons seized in the context of armed hostilities; and (3) the desire to absolve those implementing the policies of any liability for war crimes under U.S. and international law.
Regarding the Torture Papers
, which detail Torture's Paper Trail
, and, then there's Hungry for Air
: Learning The Language Of Torture, and, of course, there's ( more inside)
posted by y2karl
on Mar 14, 2005 -
What if Bush has been right about Iraq all along?
[...]By now, you might have even voted against George Bush -- a second time -- to register your disapproval.
But after watching Sunday's election in Iraq and seeing the first clear sign that freedom really may mean something to the Iraqi people, you have to be asking yourself: What if it turns out Bush was right, and we were wrong?
It's hard to swallow, isn't it?[...]
posted by Postroad
on Feb 2, 2005 -
Mosul attack - heart-warming?
I never figured I'd hear heart-warming in relation to the aftermath of a missile attack, but I heard the quote on the radio yesterday, and it just seems wrong.
"It was a heart-warming experience to see the wounded soldiers caring for those who were more severely wounded." said Brig.-Gen. Ham.
posted by jim-of-oz
on Dec 22, 2004 -
LAWs instructions for starting criminal procedures against Bush
Today in Vancouver, Lawyers Against the War filed torture charges against George W. Bush under the Canadian Criminal Code. The charges were laid by Gail Davidson, co-chair of Lawyers against the War--LAW, under provisions enacted pursuant to the U.N. Torture Convention, ratified by both Canada and the United States. The charges concern the well known abuses of prisoners held by US Armed Forces in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba. The charges were accepted by the Justice of the Peace and referred for a hearing to decide whether Bush should be required to appear for trial. The Attorney General of Canada's consent is required within eight days for proceedings to continue, and the question of Bush's diplomatic immunity will have to be resolved by the court.
posted by sunexplodes
on Dec 1, 2004 -
Confirming the Obvious: "A Knight Ridder review of the administration's Iraq policy and decisions has found that it invaded Iraq without a comprehensive plan in place to secure and rebuild the country... The Bush administration's failure to plan to win the peace in Iraq was the product of many of the same problems that plagued the administration's case for war, including wishful thinking, bad information from Iraqi exiles who said Iraqis would welcome American troops as liberators and contempt for dissenting opinions."
Just in case anyone you know is still pretending this administration had the slightest idea what it was doing after "Mission Accomplished."
posted by jscalzi
on Oct 16, 2004 -
Dear Mike, Iraq sucks.
Michael Moore received a flood of letters and emails from disillusioned and angry American soldiers serving in Iraq. From today's Guardian.
posted by knutmo
on Oct 5, 2004 -
Is there a link between
today's headline: Baghdad Car Bombs Kill 34 Children Receiving Sweets
(from American troops) and this Wall Street Journal front page article
from September 22th?
"Capt. Ayers took lessons from his fellow captains. In April, Capt. Jesse Beaudin convinced a friend from the U.S. to send backpacks, notebooks and pencils for schoolchildren. Kids mobbed troops for the goods whenever they went out on patrol. "The kids provided security. No one attacked us when we were surrounded by children," Capt. Beaudin says. After hearing about this tactic at the dining hall, Capt. Ayers's men also wrote home requesting school supplies."
Non-subscribers can read the WSJ article here
posted by miguelbar
on Sep 30, 2004 -
The grim glory of war.
Hundreds of pictures from the front lines in Iraq. I was very skeptical about posting this link, but I thought it'd be useful to all our sofa warriors here at MeFi, so they'll have some images to relate to whenever they equate "support our troops" with "keep them there for as long as it takes".
posted by acrobat
on Sep 9, 2004 -
US Army to Rebid Halliburton Contracts
Looks like Halliburton's about to lose its sweetheart deal as the US Army looks to rebidthe contracts.
"Pentagon auditors last month "strongly" urged the Army to withhold paying 15 percent of Halliburton's bills in Iraq, saying the company had not provided enough details to support at least $1.82 billion out of $4.3 billion of logistical work."
Insert inappropriate snide political comment here.
posted by fenriq
on Sep 7, 2004 -
Peace breaks out. War surrenders!
Grand Ayatollah Sistani has returned to Iraq, and is leading a nationwide march to the holy city of Najaf to peacefully resolve the conflict. Moqtada al-Sadr's people have called upon their supporters to join the march too. Will Sadr and his Mahdi Army walk away free men? Double secret probation, maybe?!
posted by insomnia_lj
on Aug 25, 2004 -
Federally Funded Science Fiction.
The CIA announced today that next month's final report on Iraq's weapons program under Saddam Hussein will mostly encompass an analysis of what they believe Iraq would be like through 2008 had Bush not invaded the country. Because when you want accurate, detailed analysis of the future of Iraq's weapons, you turn to the group that got it completely wrong
during the present.
posted by XQUZYPHYR
on Aug 20, 2004 -
You Too Can Profit From The War on Terra
"You’d think with both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars well under way and with the war on terrorism being more than two years old that the share price of any bullet proof vest manufacturer would be fully valued. Not so!
The company that manufactures the amazing life saving bullet proof vests that Sgt. Travis L. McKinney wrote to from the Iraq front line is not only undervalued but is a screaming takeover candidate that is poised to enjoy an up to 450% increase in its stock price." Operators are standing by...
posted by owillis
on Jun 16, 2004 -
How to get out of
the quagmire that is
To implement this exit strategy, we will have to practice running quickly. It is further recommended that, while running, the eyes be cast down, to avoid witnessing any last-minute people trying to kill us. We will have to establish excellent communications so that the moment that final person begins dying, we can all begin running quickly at the same time, eyes cast down, quickly, to our vehicles, to get to the airport and get out of the country.
posted by dayvin
on May 25, 2004 -
In policy reversal, US signals possible acceptance of theocracy in Iraq
Bringing democracy to the area...Ladies: do we have some surprises in store for you. Is Iran to be the model? "The United States signaled its readiness to put up with an Islamic theocracy in future sovereign Iraq, with Secretary of State Colin Powell saying the US administration "will have to accept" any government created as a result of free and fair elections there. ..."
posted by Postroad
on May 16, 2004 -
The Wrong Morons.
(from the Army Times
) "Around the halls of the Pentagon, a term of caustic derision has emerged for the enlisted soldiers at the heart of the furor over the Abu Ghraib prison scandal: the six morons who lost the war...But the folks in the Pentagon are talking about the wrong morons."
posted by Ty Webb
on May 11, 2004 -
Implications of a 4-Star Command in Iraq.
In an small press release, it was recently announced that Iraq *may* be getting a 4-star general, but *not* to replace the current 3-star military commander of that nation. So what difference does a single star make?
"...In other words, the Defense Department is putting forward the idea of another regional command because it anticipates the possibility of intensifying combat operations throughout the region.
The war in Iraq might be coming under control, but from the standpoint of the Defense Department, the end of the Iraq campaign is the preface to follow-on campaigns.
posted by kablam
on Jan 20, 2004 -
Senators were told Iraqi weapons could hit U.S. U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson said Monday the Bush administration last year told him and other senators that Iraq not only had weapons of mass destruction, but they had the means to deliver them to East Coast cities.
If this is true, is he in trouble for saying it?
posted by bas67
on Dec 17, 2003 -
Robert "Moose" Cobb's new job
--Under fire for its handling of postwar contracts in Iraq, the Bush administration plans to appoint NASA's inspector general to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad to oversee investigations of any alleged abuses.
Cobb was Associate Presidential Counsel for Bush and before that spent nine years as a career attorney with the Office of Government Ethics. His appointment was seen as a bid by the administration to counter criticism -- mostly from Democrats in Congress -- that oversight of multibillion-dollar contracts has been lax.
So can a guy who worked in the Bush White House actually be trusted to objectively investigate abuses? And if the Pentagon is auditing all of this, why use this guy? (and can the Pentagon objectively investigate this stuff either?)
posted by amberglow
on Dec 15, 2003 -
A little Iraqi girl -- no more than eight years old
-- squatted beside the road with tears of humiliation streaming down her cheeks.
Twenty feet away, three American soldiers had their rifles aimed at her as she was forced to relieve herself in full view of a long line of parked cars. From inside their vehicles, the Iraqi onlookers screamed their rage at the U.S. troops.
Whenever one of the Iraqis ventured to step out of his vehicle, an American officer bellowed, "Get back in the car, a--hole!" and the .50-calibre machinegun mounted on the U.S. Hummer would swing menacingly toward the protester.
posted by tpoh.org
on Sep 28, 2003 -
A soldier's letter home, or clever propaganda?
This "letter" has been making the rounds as an email, supposedly from an officer, stationed in Iraq, named "Mark". He certainly seems to know a lot about what's going on. He loves his job, likes his generals, and admires the Iraqi people, who like him and other Americans; and he hates the press and the foreigners he says are fighting reconstruction.
Sounds a little too good to be true.
posted by kablam
on Jul 23, 2003 -
Operation: Air Conditioner
It's about dropping our differences and getting together to support our troops and keep them cool.
Should I feel terribly guilty about giggling at some of the things on this web page? Like: "Together We Are: An Army of One" (Say what?) and "Here are some of the items that I buy and send besides air conditioners: Baby Wipes, Powder... Liquid Soap (I heard the bar melts)... Tiki Torches
. Check out the Baghdad Weather Report near the bottom, and... wait a minute... "I’ve organized people to begin “Operation Christmas” and we need to start planning that in August." (So we aren't leaving anytime soon?)
And, while they seem to have enough power to run the A/C at the Army camp, electricity for the rest of Iraq is still gonna take some more money
posted by wendell
on Jul 17, 2003 -