Jonah Goldberg, you are a God!
I wish, I wish, I wish
I could write like this
Goldberg dissects that silly Berserkely study quite nicely in all the language I was struggling to find, and I am not in the least bit disappointed that this respectable (and published!)journalist beat me to the punch. (After all, who the hell am I? I'm just some unknown conservative pagan mommy sitting out here on a public journal service. This guy is a Respected Journalist.) sigh
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Mr. Goldberg!
This Was a Good Thing to Do
Just about the time I'm ready to throw my hands in the air, and write all reporters off as lying, hysterical little fops, the search for supporting evidence in my assertion that America is a Good Place yields fruit: This Was a Good Thing to Do
by Paul A. Gigot "Most reporting from Iraq suggests that the U.S. "occupation" isn't welcome here. But following Mr. Wolfowitz around the country [Mr. Gigot] found precisely the opposite to be true. The majority aren't worried that we'll stay too long; they're petrified we'll leave too soon. Traumatized by 35 years of Saddam's terror, they fear we'll lose our nerve as casualties mount and leave them once again to the Baath Party's merciless revenge."
Moreover: "That is certainly true in Najaf, which the press predicted in April would be the center of a pro-Iranian Shiite revolt. Only a week ago Sunday, Washington Post reporter Pamela Constable made Section A with a story titled "Rumors Spark Iraqi Protests as Pentagon Official Stops By." Interesting, if true.
But Ms. Constable hung her tale on the rant of a single Shiite cleric who wasn't chosen for the Najaf city council*. Even granting that her details were accurate--there was a protest by this Shiite faction, though not when Mr. Wolfowitz was around--the story still gave a false impression of overall life in Najaf. On the same day, I saw Mr. Wolfowitz's caravan welcomed here and in nearby Karbala with waves and shouts of "Thank you, Bush."
Admittedly, mistakes have been made. President Bush declared that the war was over too soon. I remember shaking my head May 1st, in the face of his triumphant--and premature declaration. President Bush has made other mistakes at home, in regard especially to issues addressed by his Christian morality--especially the Pledge of Allegiance (which I still have no problem reciting, because God is God/dess), and his stance on what defines marriage.
In Iraq, the long-lasting demoralization of the people was underestimated, among other things. As I've stated before, those poor people lived in abject fear. It will take a long time for the scars inflicted by the Baathist party to heal. But we're learning, and they will heal so long as we don't pull out too soon and leave them open for a political coup by another predatory regime.
Yet, despite Bush's shortcomings, I am able to keep a dispassionate view of his presidency. Whatever misgivings I, as a pagan, feel toward his Christian morality, I still respect the man for his convictions. We want someone who has principles, and who can stick to them, in the White House. Since 9/11, we have seen President Bush as a strong leader who has strived to keep his promises. It's just too bad that the rabid, histrionic, "I hate Bush" crowd cannot accept anything positive that his administration has achieved. What's more--rant for another day--there are a lot of people who look at this war as another movie; something that should be over in two hours. harumph
Just shows their naivete, doesn't it?
So, as a result, I've been on media watch. For every spin-doctored, hateful, lying piece of trash put out by Big Media, I will strive to find one fair, impartial, and even reasonable article that quietly states the facts without dramatics and manipulative language. I know I won't always be successful. Frothing sensationalists seem to comprise the majority of journalists today. After all, an emotional byline will get more attention than a drily factual one.
That being neither here or there, let me just close by saying that finding Mr. Gigot's article today felt like taking a long drink of cool water.
So, was it legal?
You bet your sweet ass it was.
Killing Qusay and Uday was not assassination, since they were combatants. Once gunfire is exchanged--and gunfire answered our soldiers' calls for surrender--the situation becomes another battle. Casualties in those scenarios fall under different conventions.
tends to be pretty liberal in its views. (I guess that's way they bill it as "opinion and commentary".) But, there's a post today concerning the legality
of the Insane Boys' deaths.
I'm going to quote a bit: "...But that ban [Executive Order 12333] doesn't apply to combat situations. According to most accounts of the Mosul raid, the American soldiers were fired upon when they entered the house. The moment gunfire was exchanged, the operation became a combat engagement, and anyone involved in the hostilities was legally fair game."
Next paragraph: "...Yet even if the Hussein brothers had not engaged the American forces, their killings still might not have qualified as assassinations. During wartime, it is generally acceptable to attack figures who are involved in military operations, and it is widely believed that Odai and Qusai were helping to coordinate resistance to the American occupation. As long as the brothers weren't killed by treacherous means—say, by luring them to a peace conference, then shooting them—they are legitimate targets..."
Go read it for yourself.
The last paragraph of the article discuses the legality/ethics of posting the pictures of the Dead Hellspawn. All I can say is, "Damned if you do, damned if you don't." Had the American government refused to release the photos, and later video of the deceased, the media would have been up in arms, screaming about "cover ups" and "obfuscation".
So, what should the administration do? Release the photos and footage to reassure the people, or risk becoming targets for the biased media?
Well, Bush isn't as dumb as people like to think. He's shrewd, that one, whether you like it or not. He's used to being a media target. He figured it'd be just fine for the Idiotarians to break their teeth on his facade, while the truth got out and soaked into the minds and souls of the Iraqi people.
There's even been some whinging abut holding the bodies. Islamic burial practices usually put the body in the ground by sunset of the day of death. But
, it doesn't seem to be distressing the Iraqi people too much. Some of the reading I've done has Iraqis calling for things much more brutal than heads on pikes.
"... “We will believe they are dead when Odai and Qusai’s bodies are tied to cars and dragged through the streets so everybody can see them,” said Muhammad, a Baghdad engineer.
"Businessman Khalil Ali said photographs meant nothing.
“They should have been hung up on poles in a square in Baghdad so all Iraqis could see them,” he said. “Then they should have died as people ate them alive.”
This was pulled from a MSNBC article here
. The writer of this particular piece was apparently so hung up in trying to create doubt surrounding the motivations and handling of Hellspawns' deaths, that she or he failed to absorb the real meaning behind those bloodthirsty statements.
The Iraqi people hated the Husseins. They loathed them. They're glad they're gone, and just want some proof that they can go to bed and sleep a little easier tonight.
The calls for postmortem humiliation go on:
"...“We don’t want them to be buried in Iraq because they are not sons of Iraq,” Mr Hassan declared as he shuffled backgammon pieces in the tea shop.
“We would dig up the graves and feed them to the dogs,” the tea shop owner interjected to evident approval. “They should take them to another country to bury them. Anywhere but here. We will never let them rest.”
These excerpts are taken from a Timesonline
article. (Thanks to Imperial Blogmeister Misha I
for the link.)
And Americans are inhumane? We're committing war crimes? For the love of little fishes, we're holding the bastards in cold storage until a family member can come claim them. (Brilliant tactic, that. grins
) We "assassinated" the Hellspawn, did we?
At least our brand of "assassination" was cleaner than the deaths they would have gotten at the hands of their own people! I know
there are some Iraqi daddys out there who would have liked to do a hell of a lot worse than ice two turds cowering in a bathroom, in order to answer the rape, torture, and/or murders of their little girls!
I close: The deaths of Uday and Qusay are legal. I'm even happy to be able to reassure the Iraqi people that they're dead for sure. Heaven knows they deserve that feeling of security.
To the Iraqi people:
Now, you folks get a good night's sleep tonight, and get on with the business of learning how to govern yourselves come morning. We'll be there to help you for as long as you need us. After that, we're going to do what we did in WW II: we'll pack up our toys and go home. Bt before we do that, y'all need to get strong and healthy first, OK? We won't just leave you by the roadside to get scooped up by another predator.
Go on. You can stand up on your own. We know you can.
This Trip to Paradise Courtesy of the US Armed Forces.
Enjoy your brief visit with Allah, you murderers
. I think He has a thing or two to discuss with you regarding your interpretation of the Quran. As I recall, Islam teaches love and tolerance. You murdering Himmleresque pieces of shit screwed that up big time. I remember that Islam has a hell, and I'm pretty sure you're burning in it, right now.
The sons of Saddam Hussein are dead. My faith in Divine Justice is reinforced.
Now, I don't want to hear any quibbling about how they only made a 90% match with Uday's dental records. That's a damn good match. Plus, beyond visual, dental, autopsy, and X-ray identification, DNA testing will be used. Don't ask how we got hold of DNA samples from the Insane boys; all I can say is we can be sure that good spooks took care of that long since.
There will be people moaning about poor Uday; poor Qusay. Those big ol' meanie US Army guys were picking on those poor, misguided men. How dare they kill them? Murderers! Murderers!
I say those people are oxygen bandits, polluting my atmosphere with methane emissions from their mouths. (In other words, they're full of shit.)
Uday and Qusay were in the house, firing on our troops. Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez stated it well: "Our mission was find, kill or capture. We had an enemy that was barricaded and we had to take measures to neutralize the target."
That means that the Hussein boys picked a fight, and our warriors had to protect themselves. I grew up in the military, and came to understand that officers are very good at understating things. Those in the know can read between the lines and know that the enemy was being particularly vicious before our troops decided that Enough Was Enough
Lt. Gen. Sanchez went on to explain that US troops had been fired upon by those in the house. Our fighters decided to wait for backup following one injury. It was a brilliant tactic. Sanchez said, "...There was no reason for us to rush to failure..."
That's good leadership. A good commander knows when it's best to get a little more firepower involved to make sure that the mission is an unmitigated success. As General Patton was credited with saying, "The idea is not to die for your country. The idea is to make the other poor bastard die for his."
So, today, the sun shines a bit brighter for me. We kicked the Ba'athist regime right in their shriveled 'nads. (Ethnically cleanse this, motherfuckers!
I'm not worried about reprisals. Our troops are part of the best damned fighting force ever
fielded; they can take care of it. In fact, they're ready and raring to get to it, as evidenced here
This post may be added to later. Right now, I'm off to do some more research.
Over my lunch break, I hopped out to listen to this morning's newsbriefing
by Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz. He talks about his recent trip to Iraq, and shares his impressions on the state of the country, and the accomplishments achieved since the fall of Saddam's regieme.
- No food crisis. The people have enough food and water.
- The hospitals are open and supplies are running freely.
- Oil production is back up to 100+ million barrels a day.
- Schools have reopened and finals are complete.
- Town councils are functioning on their own.
- There are no refugee crises in neighboring countries.
- Except for telecomm, which had to be specifically targeted, there is no damage to the infrastructure.
- There were no oilfield fires or dam breaks.
Things that were worse than we expected once on-site:
- No Iraqi army units came to our side.
- The police still needs extensive rehabilitation
- The desperate, and rapidly-diminishing, Baathist loyalists are taking out contracts on US servicepeople.
Fear. Pure and simple. Once you read all the accounts of the horror and atrocity perpetrated on the people of Iraq by Saddam and his hellspawn, you get a strong picture of what happened whenever someone tried standing against them. Only now, as Deputy Secretary of Defense Wolfowitz explains, are people getting the picture that Saddam is gone
, and we are there to stay until the reconstruction is complete, and the Iraqi's have their own [free and democratic] form of government.
Also, in terms of the police force, it is assured that Qusay would hire men as sadistic as himself. It'll take work to weed those human shitbags out, but again, our troops--namely the MP's--are up to the challenge.
Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz imparted an interesting anecdote during the course of his speech. It seems there was a problem with butchers throwing scraps and carcasses in the street. Our troops resolved the problem by organizing them into their own association, and making them responsible for their own cleanup.
It seems that this was previoulsy unheard of because, well, anyone who did something wrong would be taken out and shot. But, the association is working well, and sanitary conditions have improved vastly. Secretary Wolfowitz asked the soldier if the idea was something he'd learned at West Point? The answer was, "No".
I think it goes to illustrate not only intelligence and innovation, but underscores the culture that spawned it. This soldier was able to show initiative and come up with a creative solution to a problem because he has always been encouraged to do so. By our culture. The American
culture. Forming a self-policing association is an American thing to do. What a wonderful example of the way we can positively impact and empower the Iraqi people!
As the fear continues to subside, these marvelous people will be able to come more and more out of the woodwork. As Bill Whittle
noted some time back, I will know that our work in Iraq has been successful on the day that they kick our asses
in soccer. Gods bless 'em. They deserve this freedom and security.
In closing, here are some links I followed today, while I simmered and gelled these thoughts: British Labor Party Member of Parliament Ann Clwyd
is chair of INDICT. She has documented many eyewitness accounts of murder, rape, and torture. She asks how the war in Iraq could be opposed, in light of these atrocities against humanity? Excesses
of Hussein's son's.
Sentimental in the typical style of the Washington Post, but this article
outlines more of Qusay and Uday's depravity.
I cannot help but wonder how our own sports celebrities would hold up under this sort of pressure
In interesting asides, two articles from the National Review Online discuss first, the Dems' antiquated methods
of trying to discredit President Bush, and second, how the term "peace"
must be clearly defined, and taken in context. Specifically, Bat Yeor describes the folly of writing jihad off as Islam's way of promoting peace, especially because it creates so much misery. (I'm looking at you
, European Union.) Finally
, Army Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez describes the 101st Airbourne Division's involvement in the deaths of Saddam Insane's ill-begotten spawn.
That's all for today, kids.
Saddam is an evil madman. Yes, EVIL.
One of the best minds on the World Wide Web is Steven Den Beste
. If you visit his site, make sure to visit The Essential Library. Your mind will groan with information when you've finished.
Today, he discussed the finding of yet another mass grave in Iraq. There is indication that it may contain up to 400 bodies. The remains recovered so far are 25 women and children--all with bullet holes in their heads.
Now, I'm a mother, and that positively horrifies me. Let's get something straight: I don't care that WMD haven't been found, yet. I don't give a shit that the CIA let poorly-edited/verified intel pour out of President Bush's mouth.
I don't give a flying fuck about any of that. So get over it.
What I care about is the fact that Saddam Insane has been DEPOSED. He is OUT OF POWER in Iraq. Which means that some mothers can sleep a tiny bit easier, not having to fear murder, pillage, mutilation, or rape upon their children or themselves.
Here's another point: WMD were under development in Iraq. Period. Don't let anyone tell you differently. The problem is that we gave Saddam too much warning that we were coming for him. It's my considered opinion that he'd been slipping the weapons out of Iraq for some time. And where the mobile germ labs haven't been proven to produce biologicals, they have not been DISPROVEN, either. I will continue to believe that were used for nefarious purposes until better intelligence comes in.
Also, I believe that the centrifuges
found a few weeks ago are the firing pin of the smoking gun. What else is hidden under rosebushes and in the desert of Iraq? It will be found; it's only a matter of time.
BOTTOM LINE: Saddam Hussein is evil. We did a good thing by putting him out of power. Mass murder: that's the baliwick of a Nazi. (Before someone out there goes calling me Nazi for these views--go re-read the history of WW II, and look at some concentration camp pictures. Look at the bodies, lined up like cords of wood. Then go find the pictures of the dead Kurdish children in Iraq. Compare. Contrast. Then ask yourself who the "nazi" is.)